It has become one of the most popular demos of Steam’s Next Fest, and with good reason. This strategy game surprises with its possibilities and is destined to carve out a niche for itself among the big names in the genre.
If you start playing Manor Lords without knowing much about it, you may be in for a surprise. His approach seems like that of the classic game of city Building Strategy, something similar to what we could find (saving distances) in a Two Point Campus. That is, to make our population grow, in this case in the Middle Ages, fulfill the construction objectives that are indicated to us and, little by little, go deeper into the small decisions and micro-managements that will make us succeed and make our town attractive to more inhabitants. And although this is so, and there is no doubt that it is one of the great bases of Manor Lords, it is not the only one. As if it were a Total War, all this city construction system will be transformed, when the time comes, also into a war strategy game in which we can take our army, and even our villagers with their sickles and pitchforks if we have nothing else, to war. Even creating all kinds of battle formations, skirmishes and flanks as we are used to seeing in the genre.
So Manor Lords is like a two in one. The part that the demo focuses on is managing and building your first villa, starting from the lowest point. With just a handful of men and an ox to carry the trunks of the felled trees, I have begun to build the town with its most basic buildings while at the same time creating the roads for them to move between each other. Little by little, a series of objectives that we will have to comply with, but we are also expected to begin to master many of its details, and the truth is that it is worth it. Whether we want to understand how evolve some buildings, how to engage in the import and export business or the benefits of building markets and churches, it’s a joy to pause the action and peruse each of the game screens.
The first enemy I have dealt with has not been a rival population or another country, but the winter. I have had to survive the harsh weather conditions and the long months of cold temperatures that are expected of us who have worked like little ants and have our barns and warehouses full of food at the risk of the game ending completely.
When all the strategy is set we can go down to the mud and enjoy the show
It’s easy to describe these scenes where you see your workers erecting new buildings, cutting down trees, plowing the fields and hunting animals, because the level of detail in Manor Lords is incredible for this type of game. The camera can get very close, and the game does not suffer at all in terms of Level of detail, seeing all the actions and the work behind each of them.
What’s more: you can take a tour of your own town. The character I represent, just a portrait in a corner of the screen, can go down and walk the paths traveled by the common people while he does his daily work. And it’s not just out of curiosity, since the way our character walks is very elaborate. Even his fancy cape waves better than he ever did Batman’s.
The same will happen in battles. As was customary in Total War, when all the strategy is configured we can go down to the mud and enjoy the show to see the clash of troops with those of the rival and how they fall through the enemy steel. Makes one wonder who he is Slavic Magic and where they have come from, because the realism with which they have imbued their work through motion capture, photogrammetry and physics simulation It is so complete that it has nothing to envy neither the best city builders nor the best war strategy games.
Download the Manor Lord demo on Steam for free
At least, that is the feeling that his demonstration and his first trailers leave me in which everything seems to be at a very high level. His passage through the Next Fest has only confirmed it so that we are attentive to his launch, which for the moment is still not materialized, although it shouldn’t be too far back in time. Be that as it may, the winter of waiting will be just as hard as the winter of the game.