Metascore
65

Mixed or average reviews - based on 30 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 30
  2. Negative: 3 out of 30
Buy On
  1. Sep 26, 2014
    90
    Stronghold Crusader 2 was a rare game that I got lost in. I started playing and before I knew it, it was six hours later. Who can resist a game about castle building, economy raising, and taking on large castles full of troops and hazards?. Especially when you can soften up the numbers by launching diseased animals over castle walls.
  2. Sep 23, 2014
    88
    Does a good job walking the thin line between economy-sim and RTS. Gives a good “build it and then knock it down” feeling with varied and colorful units.
  3. Sep 29, 2014
    85
    A very good product. The difference between this game and Firefly's previous game is devastating. Crusader II is basically Crusader wearing Stronghold 3, and that's not a bad thing. To be honest, the campaign could have been better, the interface clearer and the graphics prettier, but all in all the end result is worthy of praise from the fans.
  4. Oct 9, 2014
    80
    I would not recommend it as a single-player game. It simply doesn’t have enough flesh on the bones to be played that way for more than a few days. Fortunately, Crusader was never meant to be played alone.
  5. After 7 years of waiting, the new Crusader game is released. Stronghold Crusader II contains all the cool features from the original Stronghold Crusader game with some new and fun gameplay.
  6. Sep 25, 2014
    80
    Stronghold Crusader II is a great RTS game with a solid combat system and robust micromanagement. We love the freedom that we have to create our dreamed bastion and its addictive multiplayer options.
  7. Sep 23, 2014
    80
    Firefly Studios hasn't quite made a new classic RTS game here, but they were extremely close.
  8. Sep 22, 2014
    80
    For old, war-tested Stronghold players Crusader 2 is a triumphant evolution of the game that they've held dear for the last twelve years. For the rest of us though, there is perhaps no better time to see what all the fuss is about.
  9. Oct 10, 2014
    72
    As long as you don’t mind that the game doesn’t really have a campaign and instead relies on skirmishes, then it can provide you with a worthwhile gaming experience. I’d just recommend that you wait for the price to drop down to well under the $50 mark where it is now.
  10. Oct 12, 2014
    70
    Stronghold Crusader 2 is a product made for those fans who, after twelve years, still want to play the original game without any really new addition to the formula.
  11. Oct 12, 2014
    70
    There are some issues that prevent it from becoming a better game, but still it delivers a good feeling that fans of the original game will enjoy.
  12. Oct 10, 2014
    70
    Combat is the traditional RTS “smash into each other experience” but it works well (despite the questionable unit AI), and building your castle is incredibly pleasing despite the dodgy interaction with terrain. Irritating moments such as the enemy Lord fights and generally high difficulty detract significantly from the game, but it’s still an enjoyable romp for any RTS fan.
  13. Oct 3, 2014
    70
    Stronghold Crusader 2 goes back to the roots of the series, taking us almost 15 years back in time. This can be good news for someone, but we expected something more and for the rebirth of the franchise we’ll have to wait for the next episode, hoping for a braver approach.
  14. Sep 23, 2014
    70
    Stronghold Crusaders II follows the lead of its (old) predecessor. It's a nice strategy game coming from an ancient golden age.
  15. Sep 25, 2014
    69
    Stronghold Crusader II can surely elicit nostalgia feelings in the most old-school fans, but it seems to lack the virtues to truly compete in the modern world.
  16. Sep 24, 2014
    64
    The Stronghold series isn't like Total War, doing a hundred different things; it just needs to get the castles and combat right. On the evidence of Stronghold Crusader 2, Firefly is moving in the right direction, but it still has a way to go.
  17. Games Master UK
    Oct 23, 2014
    62
    It isn't broken, and it has moments of mild glory, but lacks personality. [Dec 2014, p.81]
  18. Sep 24, 2014
    61
    It's still fun as long as you don't care about a single player campaign and up to date visuals.
  19. Dec 3, 2014
    60
    Blast from the past when real-time strategies used to dominate the world. The creators took the concept of the first part almost completely and besides the updated visuals there is no extra value added to differentiate the sequel from the original.
  20. Oct 19, 2014
    60
    Stronghold Crusader 2 is hardly the worst representative of its niche sub-genre, but Firefly Studios is too stuck in the past to freshen the aging concept.
  21. Oct 18, 2014
    60
    A particularly repetitive gameplay that fails to innovate and remains very similar to that of the first chapter will be appreciated by fans of the historical series, but it will definitely be frowned upon by those who have not particularly loved the first Crusader.
  22. Oct 10, 2014
    60
    Stronghold Crusader 2 is not what we’ve hoped: right now the game doesn’t come close to its great predecessor. Still, there are some original ideas to be found here, but thanks to all the bugs it feels like this game has been released too soon.
  23. Oct 7, 2014
    60
    Stronghold Crusader 2 delivers exciting RTS battles and is a fun castle-building simulation, which challenges the player every single match. Despite this, the game is disappointing in many other areas, and because of that we yearned numerous times for its predecessor.
  24. Oct 3, 2014
    60
    Stronghold Crusader 2 is a good strategy game, effective and addictive. Still, pity he did not further revolutionizes the series, and we would like a true modern graphics engine have been developed for the occasion.
  25. Oct 1, 2014
    60
    Stronghold Crusader 2 understands the art of the troop blob, but that alone doesn't make it a good game. Its lack of interesting units, underdeveloped castle-building options, and terrible tutorials hold the game back. Blob warfare is still fun, and directing an army never gets old. But man cannot live on blob alone.
  26. Sep 26, 2014
    59
    This is no catastrophe, but it is far from being a good game as well.
  27. Oct 1, 2014
    50
    FireFly lives up to its promise of producing a better-looking version of its first games, but that’s all they live up to.
  28. Game World Navigator Magazine
    Oct 25, 2014
    46
    When it comes to the fight the game remains as clueless as before. An attack resembles a mob hit on the madhouse watchman's post: confused fighters run toward the target and drop dead on the way. All three formations are designed to provide a semblance of order, but after right click on the enemy such order immediately thrown into chaos. And, just as before, two dozen archers on the wall solve most of the issues of defense. The visual part of the game just aggravates the impression that ... Oops, there is no impression actually. Nobody creates games in this way anymore. [Nov 2014, p.99]
  29. CD-Action
    Dec 13, 2014
    40
    When I read that Crusader is slowly becoming the game the developers wanted it to be, I can’t hold back laughter. What are they going to do in Crusader III? Strip the visuals of distinctiveness even more? Simplify the economy further? Remove some more units? [Dec 2014, p.81]
  30. Oct 8, 2014
    40
    The game is an anachronism, proving that transposing ideas from the past (without thinking critically about how they should be represented in the present) doesn’t always work.
User Score
6.1

Mixed or average reviews- based on 214 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 96 out of 214
  2. Negative: 68 out of 214
  1. Sep 24, 2014
    4
    A big disappointment. In my first review, I stated that AI has been improved a lot. Several hours passed, I realize that I was wrong. In termsA big disappointment. In my first review, I stated that AI has been improved a lot. Several hours passed, I realize that I was wrong. In terms of unit management, AI does an excellent job, you won't have a chance if AI has a similar army size of your army. However, the reason why AI can rush so quickly is just because AI cheat for resources and units. Just try to destroy more and more AI's buildings, you will finally find out that opponent AI can still spawn any units they want even they don't have the necessary buildings and resource.

    The game has cut out a lot of content from the Stronghold Crusader I, you have less buildings in this game. Also, the details, animation, actions, voice and description of units are either absent or greatly reduced. Graphics becomes 3D now but it looks even worse than the 2.5D HD graphic in SC I.

    Single player campaign just look like a in-game tutorial, so your main game modes are the skirmish and sandbox mode. However, due to the reduction of details, there is no fun in sandbox mode compared to SC I. There are still various glitches or bugs leftover (e.g. units getting stuck, missing voice or sound, unresponsive mouse pointer, etc.), just take a look in the steam forum.

    Overall, the game doesn't worth $50 as there are not much innovation. Choosing the SC I instead may be a better purchase option.
    Full Review »
  2. Sep 23, 2014
    10
    Exactly what I wanted out of the game. If you enjoy the original stronghold crusader this should be equally as addictive. I have put about 6Exactly what I wanted out of the game. If you enjoy the original stronghold crusader this should be equally as addictive. I have put about 6 hours into the game so far. At first I was hesitant but after I progressed through the campaigns I found that this game possesses everything that made the original fun and more. Full Review »
  3. Sep 23, 2014
    5
    For the reviews that say Crusaders II "possesses everything that made you love the first game" they are 100% correct. It's 2002 again and ifFor the reviews that say Crusaders II "possesses everything that made you love the first game" they are 100% correct. It's 2002 again and if you bought this game you are the proud owner of a $50 copy of Crusaders 1. Break out your Sony Walkman, crank the Limp Bizkit, and grab yourself a can of Surge (which they're also re-releasing this year).

    Your walls are made out of chalk and disintegrate into powder at the first sign of trouble. The big battles you see in previews? Those don't happen... instead your mob of cheap units crashes into their mob of cheap units. Formations and all that stuff are meaningless. You can build a big city in the sandbox game and play around a little and that's alright but then you're just putzing around collecting resources and decorating a screen.

    I don't typically care about graphics but the only thing I can point to that is different from the 2002 release from this series is a barely perceptible bump in graphics quality. Everything else is pretty much the same dated game with bland mechanics. I really wanted this to be a good castle sim but it isn't.. small maps, ho hum AI, dated everything... and I fell for it again.

    And for $50?!?!?!. I'd give it a 6 or 7 for a price tag of $15 but this game is priced in the same neighborhood along with really good new releases.. save the $50 and get Age of Empires II HD or buy the HD version of one of the old Stronghold games (because that's essentially what this is). Unless you just love Stronghold Crusaders and want to play it with a couple new NPC lords (which changes almost nothing really). In which case, go for it.
    Full Review »