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Strategy/2D Real-Time Strategy
TEEN, Blood, Violence
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Creative city management meets the strategies of real-time warfare in Stronghold. Beginning on a remote piece of land with only a small grove and minor fortifications, players must develop their castles to become centers of cultural and economic prosperity, always balancing additions and advancements with the maintenance of a stable, productive foundation. The player must also build an able military, to defend the castle walls and seek out new conquests.
Some aspects of play may seem similar to those of games like Dungeon Keeper or Majesty, in that desired results are effected by adding new buildings and city features that encourage new units and technologies. Other aspects of Stronghold are more similar to those of conventional strategy games like WarCraft or Age of Empires, coordinating the attacks and defenses of a diverse army in real-time. Management decisions can have interdependent consequences. Displaying the decapitated heads of fallen enemies on wooden spires may frighten off invading armies and enhance defense, but it may also be disturbing to the hardworking peasant citizens of the city and lower production.
Through thoughtful and just rule, the player's castle attracts new workers, which allow for new developments and enhancements, which in turn strengthen the base and further bolster its population. By carefully tending to individual projects and adjusting to meet the changing needs of the current population, all while maintaining a strong defense and exploiting tactical advantages, the player progresses towards the overall goal of developing a great stronghold powerful enough to inspire the reunification of a war-torn land. ~ T.J. Deci, All Game Guide