How to become king in Mount & Blade: Warband

Everything you need to know about creating your own kingdom: how to get the first lands, castle, city, found a faction, lure lords, manage vassals and conquer all of Calradia

Many gamers are wondering how to become a king in Mount & Blade: Warband, what needs to be done to found a kingdom, at what point it can be said that someone has reached the very heights and has nothing more to strive for.

Notably, in the original Mount & Blade, when attempting to conquer any lands without contacting a leader, you would receive a lengthy message stating that you were a commoner who had no right to call himself king.

To make this guide true, be sure to download the Diplomacy mod from the Steam workshop. If you have one of the Total Conversion mods installed, like Floris or Clash of Kings, you don’t need to worry about it: all these mods include diplomacy by default. Since the guide was created for the original version with the Diplomacy mod, you can immediately skip the “Factions” section when using Total Conversion.

Which faction to choose to start with?

So, you’ve fired up Warband and discovered a lot of quirky factions scattered around the world. How to become a king? First, you cannot become king alone. Each faction has its own characteristics.

The Nordic kingdom (blue) tends to focus on close combat, especially if it’s housecarls. If you are moving on foot and see a Nordic Huscarl running towards you, run. This is the best way to survive. The disadvantage of the Nords is that they do not have mounted troops. Their archers are not so good, but you can’t even call them mediocre.

The Kingdom of Swadia (red) has heavy cavalry. And the main emphasis should be placed on the word “heavy”. These are real monsters on horseback, which are simply impossible to kill. In an open and spacious field, with the right tactics, with their help, you can defeat any opponent, even if they are 5-10 times larger in number. Everything else is the shortcomings of the Swadians. Their infantry is useless, and their archers even miss a huge wall.

Kingdom of Vegirs (white). Think of them like the “rangers” from Warband. This nimble faction certainly has the best offensive archers in the game. Yes, they are not very resistant, they withstand a minimum of damage, but they are able to shoot off the wings of a fly from 50 meters. Although in all other aspects they are very weak. In enclosed spaces, they are cannon fodder, but once you can place them on some kind of hill, at one point you will catch yourself thinking that they are almost invincible.

The Khergit Khanate (purple) is perhaps the most annoying faction in the game. In the Middle Ages, their best units were called “pursuers.” In fact, these are horse archers / spearmen. They don’t do much damage, they die pretty quickly if the enemy manages to catch up with them… But even in this case, before you kill them, they will have time to fray their nerves. If you are attacked by a horde of such mercenaries, your warriors are waiting for literally “death by a thousand cuts.” Each hit deals minor damage, but there are a hell of a lot of them, so they are able to crush virtually any army. Like the Swadians, they are virtually invulnerable in the open field.

The Rhodok (green) kingdom is best known for its crossbowmen. They are the exact opposite of the Vegirs. The Rhodok Crossbowman doesn’t deal that much damage, but nothing (literally NOTHING) will break through his shields. He will stand firmly on his feet and hold the line of defense until his last breath. These are the warriors that you want to have on your side during the defense of enemy sieges. I saw a detachment of 30 well-trained Rhodok crossbowmen repulse an attack by an army of 400 Swadians. I’m not kidding. But if instead of high walls you put them in an open and spacious field, they will immediately fall there. Like the rest of the Rodok units.

Sarranid Sultanate (yellow). These Arab warriors are an army of “ordinary people”. Their horsemen are as good as Swadians, their archers are Vegir’s, and their infantry can compete with the Nordic Huscarls. Disadvantages of the Sarranids? They are so “balanced” that it will be quite difficult to collect any specific army from them. They are not as efficient. Yes, they will staunchly defend themselves against similar warriors from other factions, but in a 1v1 battle they will still lose to their opponents. Masters of all trades, but they will be able to take their own only with a significant numerical superiority.

How to make friends with the chosen faction

Did you understand the factions? Have you decided which one is best for you? Now you need to confront their king. In a conversation with him, you can offer your services, say that you want to become his faithful mercenary. But that probably won’t help.

Go to all the main lords of the faction and complete their tasks. Help them when they attack someone or act as defenders themselves. Make them love you by any means. Find out who your chosen faction is at war with and attack the enemy yourself. In the end, if you make friends with one or two lords, you will be offered to become a “mercenary” of the faction. Agree and continue to show yourself to the king. After a while, you will be able to contact him again, and this time he will agree to raise you from a mercenary to a vassal. You will even be given a small settlement.

The next task is to find the marshal. Every faction has it. This is a vassal, whom the king appointed the executor of all military duties and tasks – protecting the lands and attacking enemies. If you wish, you can become a marshal, but this is not the purpose of this guide. Find the marshal and help him. Follow him everywhere and do whatever he needs.

In the end, he will offer to go on a raid on enemy borders together in order to capture a castle or city. Do it. Make sure you keep in touch with other lords. You want as many high-ranking people as possible to speak well of you.

This, by the way, also applies to enemy lords. To hell with your current faction. You want to start your own! Do not capture the enemy unless it is necessary for the assignment. From this there is no benefit, only harm. He will simply get angry at you, and for this you will receive from 1 to 3000 coins. In the long run, it’s not worth it.

After helping to capture a city or castle, go to each lord and ask: “Who, in their opinion, is worthy of owning it.” Most likely, most of them will name another lord, or maybe even a king. Try to convince the lords to hand over the castle to you. Most kings listen to the opinions of their lords.

Separate from a faction

So, the castle has been received, and the time has come to decide how you will part with your current owner (king) – peacefully or not quite …

There are two ways to refuse the king’s service – resign or start a rebellion. First, let’s talk about resignation. If you contact the king, you can ask him to resign. You will keep your men/equipment, but all cities/settlements/castles given to you by your faction will be taken away. What did you expect? You will still be friends with the king, you will not become an enemy to anyone, but you will not even have the usual settlement that the king allowed at the very beginning to call his home.

Therefore, if you want to start a rebellion, you need to capture a castle or city, and then wait for the king to hand it over to someone else (not you). It will take some time, but when it happens, you will have the opportunity to protest to the king. Thanks to this, you will save EVERYTHING you have, but automatically declare war on the faction you just rebelled against.

The “best” moment to leave is to make sure you have at least 3-4 castles and 2-3 cities. Also make sure your followers are high level and adored in your current faction. When you start a rebellion against the king, retreat to the capital and turn your followers into vassals. Send a few of them with messages to your friends from other factions. You can even bribe them. That is why, as mentioned above, you need to free as many lords as possible. Everywhere you need people who adore you. Not only in your old faction.

Convincing someone to betray their king is very difficult, but if you manage to do so, you will get the cities/castles they own and their main army, which by this point will be quite numerous and strong. Keep in mind that the relationship the lords have with their current king also plays a very important role. If they love their king, it doesn’t matter if you are best friends or not, they are unlikely to betray him and renege on their oath. Be careful who you take as allies, because you need to place the most powerful vassals near you as soon as possible.

If your friendship with the king you just rebelled against is high enough, you can ask for a truce. It is unlikely that he will agree immediately. The war is to last for several months. Or he will agree, but on the condition that you return all the castles and cities to him. So by now you should have enough followers promoted to vassals, your own marshal and capital to support an army and loyal citizens.

It is not recommended to create your own kingdom until you have several hundred lords and mountains of gold. Being king is expensive and definitely not for the faint of heart. But that’s exactly what makes Warband so exciting in the long run.

How to Rule a Kingdom and Conquer All of Calradia

Before founding your kingdom, make sure you have enough Glory, Honor or Infamy points (depending on preferences and desired relationships). Also, you should have as many rights to rule as possible. After starting the game, it is desirable to be a vassal of another kingdom for a while, and when you become powerful, rise up and justify your kingdom. During this time, you can make friends who will later become your vassals. In addition, when you become a king, you will be able to confront other monarchs. Also, a level 5 king will not be as popular or effective as a level 20 monarch.

The first requirement for ascending the throne is that you cannot be tied to another ruler. In other words, you must not be a member of the rebellion or a vassal of one of the current factions. Otherwise, there are three options:

  • ask to be released from the oath;
  • be denied ownership of the castle/city you requested and challenge the decision by force;
  • ask your husband to join you during the uprising (only for female characters).

You can also convince the ruler to abandon the rebellion for all the territory that you won for him at the cost of honor (you will get the opportunity to rename the faction and give fiefs to your heroes).

If you have not managed to separate from the overlord with the lands and you do not have any possessions, then all that is required is to start the conquest. You need a negative relationship with a faction in order to conquer its holdings. Start a rebellion by challenging the decision of who gets the conquered lands in order to start a war with the faction you belong to. If you are not currently at war or not a member of any faction, you can attack the lord or monarch to start a war with the faction; keep in mind that in this case you will lose a lot of relationship points with the monarch and make him enemy number one.

Instead, demand money from factions to move caravans. This will reduce relations with that faction by only “1” points, avoid unnecessary penalties for relations with lords/settlements, and be able to attack the fiefs of this faction as soon as you reach a negative relationship value. As soon as you have a castle or city, you will be given the opportunity to name a new faction and start ruling.

A good tactic might be to wait until someone captures a castle or town and then lay siege to it, since the garrison will be at most 50-60 soldiers in the case of a castle, or 80-90 soldiers if it is a large one. city. This is important as the first siege will take place without any allied troops.

Note : You cannot attack castles or cities of a faction with which you have a neutral or positive relationship. If you attack a lord, a village, a peasant, or demand payment from a caravan, then worsen your relationship with their faction. Wait until the total score is negative, and then you can besiege the castles and cities of this faction.

royal court

When you justify your kingdom, you will be informed that a royal court has been created in the capital of the kingdom. The capital automatically becomes the first city or castle that you received and still own. If you don’t have cities, a court will spawn in the first castle you capture. It can be moved at any time, although it requires certain materials (tools and velvet).

The royal court is where you conduct your main business, where the minister stays, where feasts are held, and where vassals go if they want to join your kingdom. At the court, all decisions are made – from the transfer of feudal lords to vassals to the selection of a new marshal to conquer foreign lands.

Minister and government options

As a ruler, you will get many new features. Your first task is to appoint a minister to oversee the lands; it could be a hero, a wife, or even a prominent local (randomly generated NPC). However, the latter option is highly discouraged, since you will not be able to take full advantage of the minister’s capabilities. After talking with the minister, you can conduct various government affairs.

In the yard you can solve various problems. Diplomats can be sent to other factions to declare war or try to get other monarchs to recognize your legitimacy. Fiefs can be distributed among your vassals, and the current marshal and minister can be replaced. But if you appoint a well-known local resident as minister, you will only have the opportunity to change the marshal and minister.

If you choose one of your heroes as a minister, you can return him back to the squad at any time. It is customary among players to appoint a hero who does not get along well with the group as a minister so that he does not quarrel with the rest of the characters in the squad. You can also hire a brand new hero in the tavern and make them a minister, since the level of the character does not affect how he will be in the role of minister. This is useful if you want to keep all current heroes.

Vassals joining a kingdom

Over time, some lords will want to join your faction. Pay attention to changing the lord’s prefix before you allow him to enter the kingdom.

As a ruler, you will often encounter landless lords from other kingdoms in your court, hoping to become your vassals. For the most part, this happens randomly, but it can also depend on their personality, experience of ruling in their last kingdom, your renown, and the amount of unallocated fiefdoms available to you.

You can try to get the other nobles to come over to your side by talking to them in private and asking them how they feel about their overlord, but don’t expect much success; while lords may not like their current ruler, most are wary of being labeled a traitor. Similar to recruiting lords, trying to get other lords to join your kingdom is highly dependent on renown, the number and location of fiefs, your kingdom’s total troop strength, loyalty to you and the current ruler, your charisma, persuasion level, and sheer luck. The notable exception is the husband if you are playing as a female character. When talking to him, an option appears that instantly makes him join your faction, regardless of the relationship with him.

You can also gift one of your heroes a fief, automatically making them one of your vassals. In this case, he will leave the squad. Although heroes can become one of the most loyal lords, in doing so you exclude a powerful character from the squad. On the other hand, the hero will not go anywhere, and on the battlefield he will lead another allied army. Be careful when assigning heroes as lords. If two heroes don’t get along when they become lords, they can take their conflict to the battlefield, so one of them can go to another kingdom. Additionally, designating a commoner hero as a vassal will result in a heavy retroactive penalty to most current and future vassals. A character with noble roots should become a vassal.

Relations with vassals

As the ruler of a newly founded kingdom, you will feel that the game has become much more multifaceted and complex. If a lord from another kingdom comes over to your side and becomes a vassal, you can claim his former lands (or seize them). You need to keep track of the “relationship” of the vassals to their overlord (open the “notes”, go to the characters and select the lord). You cannot make all the lords happy, as honor is important to some, while others easily live in dishonor. Choose wisely. Even former heroes can move to another kingdom, and in doing so, you will lose the possessions that were transferred to them earlier.

On the other hand, if you decide to preemptively remove a vassal from his position before he betrays you, this will surely anger the other lords of the kingdom, so the more lords you have, the more difficult it is to manage the kingdom. Toward the end of the game, when one or two kingdoms remain to conquer, the number of vassals of the rival kingdom(s) will be incredibly large compared to the early stages. You have to be prepared to face armies of over 4,000, but if done right, you can easily muster a force of over 6,000 depending on how many of your vassals you have.

Capturing other lords is still not recommended, as it will worsen relations with them and make it more difficult to try to convert them to your side. Not all lords like this idea, but most will appreciate it, and once you get past +50 relationship with them, it will be much easier to get them to join your side. However, whether they agree or not depends more on the relationship with their current vassals.

The more vassals you have, the more your vassals will fight among themselves, weakening the state from the inside. Try to resolve conflicts between vassals and arrange feasts regularly to improve relations with the lords of your kingdom. Listen to current lords when issuing new fiefs to vassals. Each time you do this, your relationship with all lords who disagree with the decision will drop by 1-3 points, and in the long run this can be devastating by causing your vassals to defect to the opponents. Since the size of a lord’s army is directly proportional to the number and wealth of his fiefs, it may be advantageous to have only a few lords, but give a few fiefs to each.

Managing relationships with lords is difficult, but if you act wisely, then everything will work out easily for you. Giving a lord (non-hero) a fief will increase relations by 10 and slightly improve relations with that lord’s friends (by 1-2 points), but decrease relations with most other lords by 1-3 points depending on their relationship to who you are these lands were transferred. If the lord is defeated in battle, you will also lose 1-2 relationship points with him. If you take the lands for yourself, there will be no penalties or bonuses in relations with the lords.


by Abdullah Sam
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