Stronghold Crusader 2 News: Releases On Steam Today: Crusades-Era Title Promises To Be A Test For Veteran Strategy Players [VIDEO]

By Steve Buja , Updated Sep 23, 2014 11:51 AM EDT

It has been a long road to the Holy Land, but at last the twelve year journey is over: Stronghold Crusader 2 has launched today on Steam.

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The original title, Stronghold Crusader, arrived on PC back in 2002 and fans of the Crusades-era strategy title have been clambering for a sequel ever since. The release today is a culmination of 2 years of work from the team at Firefly Studios, some of whom worked on the original game.

"Thank you for supporting us and making Stronghold Crusader 2 possible." says the game's development team, "This is our first ever independently developed and funded Stronghold game, built with your encouragement, feedback and support over the past two years. It is far from the end for Crusader 2, with content updates, DLC and patches all planned to follow in the weeks and months after launch, but it gives us great pleasure to say that the game is now available on Steam!"

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The strategy title puts you in the middle of the Third Crusade for Jerusalem as either Richard the Lionheart or an Arabian monarch (Saladin, presumably) in two historic single-player campaigns, with dynamic events such as tornados and locust swarms. A new co-op mode allows you to go into business with your friends with the vain hope that they know what they're doing. Support for eight-player on-line games is included, where you can mix between human and AI opponents.

And those AI opponents will be out for blood. Utilizing the Havok engine, even seasoned strategy gamers will find themselves scrambling against the various enemy AI, such as The Wolf, who will absolutely destroy you if you give him half a chance.

You can also create your own maps and castles in the Map Editor and Free Build modes. For those who want to create without those pesky enemies coming in and ruining everything.

The game is now available on Steam for $49.99, with a Special Edition that includes Stronghold Crusader HD, 'The Art of Stronghold Crusader 2' digital art book, and a full soundtrack composed by Robert Euvino. The special edition costs $59.99.

Watch the launch trailer, which features the dev team laying waste to one another, below!

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