Firefly Studios has recently announced that when Stronghold Crusader 2 launches this spring, gamers will be required to use Steam to play it. The reason behind the decision is that since they're an independent developer their resources are limited. For most of the game they've had two full-time programmers and two artists working on it. I'm not really an artist, but two programmers working on one game definitely takes a lot of time. They still want the game to have all of the features that players expect from a modern RTS and they can handle much of the game on their own, but secondary features such as achievements and gameplay stats will be powered through Steam where most of their players come from.
For those who wish to purchase a boxed version of the game, not to worry as there will be retail copies available in various regions, but will still require Steam to install and play.
London, UK– 16th January 2014 – Firefly Studios has announced that Valve’s Steam platform will be required to install and play Stronghold Crusader 2 at launch. Ahead of the game’s planned release in Spring 2014, Marketing Manager Nick Tannahill revealed the news in a blog post on the game’s official website at www.strongholdcrusader2.com. Here he explains the developer’s reasons behind their decision:
“As an independent developer our resources are limited. For the majority of the Crusader 2 project we have had two full-time programmers and two artists working on the game… That said we still want Crusader 2 to have all the cool and convenient features players expect from a modern RTS and a true sequel to the original Stronghold Crusader. We can handle much of the game just fine on our own, so the game’s skirmish mode, AI, single-player campaigns and other core gameplay systems such as co-op have been tailor made by Firefly. However secondary features like achievements, game invites and gameplay stats will be powered through Steam, where the majority of our players come from.”
Listing the benefits of releasing on Steam, both for the development team and players, Nick goes on to confirm a list of Steam features intended for inclusion in the game either at launch or through free post-release updates:
The main motivation behind Firefly’s decision is keeping development of the game on time, which has been a priority for all Stronghold titles since the company was founded in 1999. “The time required to create our own bespoke tools and systems for such features could end up delaying the game, which is something nobody wants… It sounds clichéd but this is win-win, we get to include the features fans of the genre expect without delaying the game or taking our focus away from core gameplay.”
Despite plans to integrate Crusader 2 with Steamworks, fans hoping to purchase a physical boxed version of Crusader 2 at launch can rest easy. Boxed copies of Stronghold Crusader 2 will be available at retail in a number of different regions, although they will require Steam to install and play.
The full news post can be found at www.strongholdcrusader2.com.
About Firefly Studios
Firefly Studios is an independent PC game developer specialising in real-time strategy and MMO titles. Formed in 1999 by Simon Bradbury and Eric Ouellette, the company has brought to market a number of high profile and commercially successful strategy games, including the Stronghold series with lifetime sales of over six million. Firefly has offices in the UK and US. For more information please visit their website at www.fireflyworlds.com or follow @fireflyworlds on Twitter.