I still remember that sinking feeling when I watched Fatshark’s War of the Vikings and noticed a serious absence of ships. As it turned out, War of the Vikings did end up having ships, but they were all stuck in beaches or impossible to reach, and while the game proved to be lots of violent fun, I never quite got over not being able to see everyone’s favourite hirsute coastal raiders faffing around on ships.
This is why I continue to be very excited about Viking Conquest, a Mount & Blade: Warband expansion being developed by the lovely brains behind the wonderful Brytenwalda mod. It was announced last month, and it looks like we’ll be seeing it in Early Access next month. Taleworlds and the Brytenwalda team have put together a gameplay trailer, so direct your eyes towards the action, some of it in the sea, below.
Mount & Blade is one of those games where my imagination overrides what I’m actually seeing as I play. It always surprises me when I watch a video, and I’m reminded that it does look a bit messy and ugly when you’re not in the middle of it. Warband didn’t even look very good when it launched four years ago, and time hasn’t been kind, either.
Still, the battles look big and chaotic, which is probably how they should look, and jumping between ships, spear in hand, dodging projectiles and flailing swords is exactly what I want from Viking brawls.
Viking Conquest will add new multiplayer modes to Mount & Blade: Warband, along with a new single-player storyline and a sandbox mode - so pretty much everything. You’ll be able pretend to be an itinerant Viking in December.