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After doing the usual research about patches and DRM, reading a few reviews and checking forums for potential pitfalls, I bought Mount&Blade from Steam.

The game was sold for the ridiculously low price of USD7.50 in January (a price so low Valve temporarily ran out of CD keys as demand ramped up) but I opted not to get the game then because I didn’t want to fall into the trap of constantly buying discounted games I never play — I’ve yet to launch Disciples II and I bought that game last August — so I ended up paying USD29.99. I’ve put a lot of time into the game since I bought it and I’m delighted to report it’s been worth every single cent.

The download is very small for a 2008 game, a mere 600MB or so, and since Steam finally allows users to choose their download server, I got the game pretty quickly from the Singapore servers. Take note that the retail version and the version downloadable from the developers’ site include Thermida DRM; the Steam version thankfully doesn’t.

The game is pretty much Sid Meier’s Pirates! It’s set on land, set in a fictitious land, has knights instead of frigates and swords instead of cannons, but it is essentially the Pirates! experience. I loved Pirates! on the Atari ST and played the hell out of it so this was an easy purchasing decision.

At least it is now.

I had been aware of the game for over three years having followed various gaming board threads about it but as always, I was leery of buying a work-in-progress. I don’t even buy retail games until two patches have been released.

The Steam version was recently updated with the most recent patch, 1.0.11, and that was the version I got when I bought it. The game runs faultlessly. I’ve yet to experience a single crash which is amazing for a 2008 game and the low system requirements mean I can run it at 1680×1050 with most of the eyecandy turned on and still get great framerates.

The game isn’t completely problem-free, however. Gamers who updated Mount&Blade through Steam were nonplussed to discover their 1.0.10 savegames weren’t 100%-compatible with 1.0.11. I just hope the next update (if there is one) doesn’t cause a similar problem.

“One thousand humble apologies, my lord and liege, I fear I must forsake you and turn my back on the people of Swadia in their hour of need, because the goddamned savegame isn’t compatible.”


Posted in Games.

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