Stronghold: Crusader Extreme

a game by FireFly Studios Ltd.
Platform: PC
User Rating: 9.0/10 - 8 votes
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See also: RTS Games
Stronghold: Crusader Extreme
Stronghold: Crusader Extreme
Stronghold: Crusader Extreme

Hold On a minute, haven't we been here before? Yes, it's slowly coming back to me. In 2002 Firefly's Stronghold Crusader was heralded as one of the finest RTS castle-building games in the business. Now we have Stronghold Crusader Extreme, the same game again, only with an ultra-hardcore campaign and some extreme skirmish levels thrown in for good measure. Who said innovation was dead?

Let's start with the graphics engine, which has clearly been left untouched since the game's original release. As a result, units once considered charming and charismatic can now be dismissed as blurred, twitching splodges on a monitor. However, while Old Father Time may not have been kind to the game's appearance, his withering effects haven't been quite as debilitating to Stronghold Crusader's gameplay, which still possesses some beauty.

Build Them Up

If you've never played a Stronghold game, the premise is simple. Build a castle, a community and a big army, then set out to knock down your enemies' fortresses while safeguarding your own. A deep, yet intuitive, settlement management system ensures that building up your fortress, economy and troop numbers is simplicity squared. Farms, hunting lodges and wells must be constructed to feed your citizens, while stone, wood and ore must be mined and stockpiled before expansion can commence.

The array of fortifications that you can tack onto your castle is solid if hardly spectacular, with walls, towers, gates, defensive weapon emplacements and lookout posts comprising the majority of options.

Knock'em Down

Speaking of virtually impossible, let's nove swiftly onto the new Extreme nissions, which, if nothing else, at least ive up to their billing.

Rarely have I come across a set of RTS missions as mercilessly unforgiving is these. Missions start sedately enough is you begin to build up your settlement, but within minutes, you're attacked by nassed enemy forces that often wipe pu out in the blink of an eye.

Unless you're the kind of person who joes to bed clutching their Stronghold lack catalogue in moist adoration, you'll robably find yourself completely and itterly overwhelmed by these battles and tempted to strap the DVD onto a irework out of sheer frustration.

Sure, here's fun to be had here, but if pu don't consider yourself to be in the top 10 percent of Stronghold players on the planet, chances are you'll find little or no enjoyment from the new Extreme content. And while the original game may still provide some entertainment, it's simply too dated to ever truly feel like money well spent.

Download Stronghold: Crusader Extreme


System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

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