Game development can be a tricky business. Sometimes an existing technology or tool just doesn’t do quite what you want it to do or it isn’t as efficient as you would hope. This leaves you with a difficult choice to make: change your design or create your own bespoke solution.
In this week’s blog, we discuss how players can interact with their fellow nobles after joining or establishing their own kingdom, looking specifically at the kingdom screen, which is an entirely new addition to the Mount & Blade series.
There is a fine balance that needs to be maintained when presenting information to players. Too little, and players fail to grasp a game mechanic or are forced into making uninformed decisions. Too much, and the information becomes overbearing or confusing. And it isn’t just the volume of information that needs to be taken into consideration. A good user interface (UI) should convey information to players quickly and clearly. It should be as non-invasive as possible, so that it doesn't get in the way of immersion, while still containing all of the information that the player needs, in a way that is functional, yet aesthetically pleasing. It has to be almost transparent, helping you in the experience without reminding you constantly that you are playing a game.
Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord is a huge sandbox that allows you to approach the game and play it in the way that you want to. This means that there isn’t a linear storyline that you have to follow. However, the game does present you with quests that offer you a way to fill your purse while improving your relations with the various notables located around Calradia.
The main advantage of creating your own game engine is that, instead of being a Swiss-army knife (second-best in everything it tries), you can craft it to specialise in what you need it to do. As you know, we created an engine from scratch for Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord. We had many goals when we started working on it, but three of them had top priority: of course it had to do what we needed in order to create a huge sandbox game such as this one, but it also had to be easily moddable, and on top of that, it had to be flexible enough to work on low-end computers. In this week's blog, we talk to Engine Programmer, Burak Dermanlı, one of the people responsible for the engine and its optimisation for all kinds of computers.