Medieval 2: Total War Kingdoms - Teutonic Wars
Designer Diary

By Brendan Rogers

Part One
Hi, my name is Brendan Rogers, AKA ‘Caliban’ to the Total War community. I do various jobs here at CA such as artwork, design and also modding support for the community. In this diary I’m going to talk a bit about the different ideas, features and history of the Teutonic Wars campaign, one of four campaigns included in the Kingdoms expansion for Medieval II.

The Teutonic Wars campaign recreates the conflict in Northern Europe between Christendom and Paganism, fuelled by the desires of the dreaded Teutonic Order. The Teutonic Order was very appealing to us for the focus of a campaign because of their controversial and influential impact on Medieval Europe. The Order was formed in Palestine during the Eastern Crusades, which was then later recognized by the papacy as a military order. Their influence on Medieval Europe stretched hundreds of years and played a large part in the conversion of pagans to Christianity. Recreating the Order as a faction in the expansion allowed us to create something completely different to the factions available in Medieval II.

The campaign takes place on a brand new custom map, the boundary of which covers the northern area around the Baltic Sea from Abo down to Kiev and from Hanover through to Novgorod. The playable factions included are The Teutonic Order, Lithuania (pagan), Denmark, Novgorod, and Poland with the Holy Roman Empire included as an unlockable faction. As I’ve mentioned, The Teutonic Order is the most unique faction to play, because of their religious foundation; they play quite differently to the other factions in Medieval II. First of all, there is no family tree. The faction leader is the Grandmaster of the Order known as the “Hochmeister”. Faction members can’t marry or have children nor is there a faction ‘heir’. A suitable leader for the faction is selected only when the Hochmeister dies. Secondly, and more significantly when it comes to gameplay in the campaign, the Teutonic Order’s method of unit recruitment is driven by religion; Teutonic Knights will only be available from regions with high levels of Catholic belief. This means that the Order will need to utilize mercenaries if they are to expand quickly, while the use of priests is crucial in order to ensure that any newly taken lands convert to Catholicism as soon as possible.

When it comes to settlements, the Order can only construct castles so they will need to utilise captured cities wisely or alternatively convert them if they are able to. We’ve given The Teutonic Order new Castle architecture and texture sets. This is unique to the Teutonic Order and helps differentiate their castles from other Northern European settlements.

During the campaign the player will experience a host of new missions including the arrival of Adventure Crusaders. These European nobles arrive on the map seeking to fight alongside the Order for papal favour. Large cash rewards will be awarded to the Order if they can show them a good time. On the flipside of this, the Lithuanian Council of Nobles is understandably distressed at their arrival and is eager for the Adventuring Crusaders to suffer a gruesome death, so you get a completely different perspective if you’re playing as the Lithuanian faction.

In the second part of my diary on the Teutonic Wars campaign, I’ll take a closer look at the Lithuanians, another faction that plays very differently to any included in Medieval II. I’ll also describe the role played by alliances and guilds and touch on some of the new units and battlefield weapons that are included in the campaign.

Part Two

Hi, my name is Brendan Rogers, AKA ‘Caliban’ to the Total War community. I do various jobs here at CA such as artwork, design and also modding support for the community and I’m currently working on Kingdoms, the expansion pack for Medieval II. You may remember that in the first part of my diary, I focused on the Teutonic Campaign, one of four campaigns featured in the Kingdoms, and in particular the Teutonic Order faction. In this second part I’m going to be looking at another new faction, the Lithuanians, and describing the role that certain alliances and guilds play in the campaign. I’ll also be touching on some of the new units and battlefield weapons that players will have at their disposal.

Like the Teutonic Order, the Lithuanian faction also offers a significant change from the standard Medieval II faction. The Lithuanians utilise a new pagan religion game mechanic based on numerous temple chains that when built, unlock recruitment of elite religious warriors. The Pagan religion can move along one of three temple chains. Each chain provides unique benefits such as increased trade and better farming. Each chain has three levels, with each level providing units of greater strength, culminating with a special pagan unit unique to that temple chain. These elite units will help the Lithuanians withstand the relentless aggression from the Teutonic Order but if Lithuania starts to buckle, they will be given the opportunity to convert to Catholicism. This conversion will unlock opportunities to construct larger cities and new building types. This will come at the cost of losing the benefits associated with pagan temple chains and their unique pagan units so when the player reaches this crossroads in the campaign, they have a significant decision to make.

Alliances and guilds play an important part in the campaign. If you’re playing as Denmark, you will be given the opportunity to form the powerful and permanent alliance with their Norwegian neighbours known as the “Union of Kalmar”. This event will trigger when Denmark occupies certain regions on the campaign map. When the Union is formed, Norwegian cities and armies are turned over to Denmark, and Norway is effectively destroyed. The Danish faction additionally gains access to recruit three of Norway’s most powerful units for themselves.

In terms of guilds, all factions will be provided the opportunity to construct the Hanseatic League Headquarters provided they are not followers of the Pagan religion. The League Headquarters is a unique building, and only one can exist in the campaign game at any one time. To be offered the chance to construct the Hanseatic League Headquarters building, a faction must hold at least one of a number of historically important Hanseatic League cities. The more of these cities a faction can control at the same time, the sooner they will be provided with the construction offer. The Hanseatic League Headquarters building provides a power trade bonus increase to all settlements of the faction which controls it. To a faction like the Teutonic Order, who must fund their vast armies through captured cities, this is certainly an attraction proposition.

There are a heap of new units in Teutonic wars from the feared Teutonic Ritterbruder to the Lithuanian pagan followers of Perkunas. We have selected a wide range of new units to capture the diversity of the era and to bring these sometimes forgotten warriors to the screen. The campaign also features new weapons such as the fearsome Mangonel with its devastating exploding barrels and burning oil that can be poured through murder holes by siege defenders. Cannons also receive an overhaul, allowing them to shoot a deadly ‘grapeshot’ of mixed shrapnel that is sure to send the infantry running. This campaign certainly has no shortage of spectacular battlefield moments.

That’s all for now, I hope I’ve given you some insight into what you can expect from the Teutonic Wars campaign and the factions, weapons and the gameplay mechanics you’ll be able to explore in this fascinating setting in Medieval history.