Great medieval atmosphere. A minor classic.
This game has a great feel to it, especially in the early part when you're building your strength. Listening to the music, sowing my fields, moving my peasants, I'm totally immersed in an idealized medieval reality.
The scale is more intimate than in most strategy games. You see individual fields and know your exact population. The best part, which I wish was in a lot more games, is that there are seasons, so you see the map frost over in the winter and turn green in spring, and you look forward to the fall harvest.
The gameplay is a hybrid, turn-based for everything except the battles which are real-time. It works!
Maybe unintentionally, the game has an ecological message. You invade counties where the fields are packed with sick cows, and sell or eat them so they're less crowded, and your farms become more efficient. Then you can get even better efficiency by going vegan and getting rid of the cows entirely!
As soon as you go to war, the music changes permanently to a tune that's not as good.
I can't get the game to work on any computer made after 1999.
I like my games easy, but once I figured out the resource management, this one got too easy even for me. I built my big stone castles and they never even got attacked!
The Bottom Line
Excellent fun medieval strategy game.