Stronghold Crusader has a built-in multiplayer mode besides the single player modes. It allows 2 to 8 players to play, supports additional use of computer lords and many more options specialized to human gameplay.
Four modes are available for connection for various broadband speeds, but Crusader does not seem to work with them. A 56k-modem is minimum requirement for network games.
It is possible to play between 2 modems, where the number of the service host is needed. This is an outdated method of playing since the widespread availability of broadband Internet.
A LAN-game is possible using TCP/IP connection. Clients need the IPv4 address of the host to join in the game, while the host has nothing to do with configuration.
The most used (and seems to be the only working) way of online play is used via a third-party client:
- the GameRanger service, which allows to create game rooms for various games and many more options. Registration is required.
- LogMeIn provides a public tunneling service via their servers through the Hamachi program, which allows to join and use their network with no cost. Hamachi can be configurated with a username and a password for games.
Skirmish lobby Edit
The Skirmish user screen closely resembles the custom mode of the single player. It has several new options tuned specially to online play. Below the differences are shown between the two modes:
- Game can only be started when everyone indicates that they are ready to play. This is shown with a silver crest containing a tick or a cross. In the bottom of the panel, the crest can be clicked on to change ready status. Every player can look at the players' list to see other players' conditions with mini-crests next to each player. Computer lords appear with a Crusader/Saracen crest instead.
- Online games can be saved periodically or manually. These games can be loaded later by clicking the crest with a green key.
- In the bottom right of the gold balancing panel, there is a small question mark, which reveals further options:
- Strong Walls: walls cannot be demolished by foot soldiers, only by siege engines.
- No Carcasses: cow corpses may not be launched from catapults and trebuchets.
- No Dogs: war hound cages cannot be sited.
- No Rush (aka Peace Time, 'pt' in short): players cannot recruit troops until a given time limit has passed. They can build an economy and manufacture/buy weapons, however. 5 min intervals or turn off.
- Game Speed: predefines the default game speed. 40 is the optimal, can be set between 20-90.
- Save Game: Crusader periodically creates an autosave file. 5 min intervals or turn off.
Players can interact with each other in three ways:
- The alliance screen: it works exactly the same as in the single player. Players can request and send goods, request help or utilize an attack on a target. Notifications appear on the ally's screen, but it entirely depends on him whether the command/request will be fulfilled or not.
- Chat panel: pressing Enter brings up a panel. Here a short message can be typed and sent globally or to specific players by highlighting their name above the input area. Escape quits the chat panel.
- Taunts: pressing F1-F10 or Ctrl+(F1-F10) plays a taunt. They are also available from the general chat interface marked with numbers 1-20. AI lords will not taunt back like they do in single player skirmish games. Use with maturity.
Killing a player will result in crumbling his castle and all units dying. Deceased players can still watch the remaining match and chat.
When a player leaves, he is immediately treated as killed. If the host leaves, the host's role will be transferred to another player. Rejoining a game already in progress is not possible.
|Units||Military • Civilian • Characters|
|Buildings||Castle • Military • Defenses • Civilian|
|Single Player||Crusader (Skirmish) • Campaigns • Castle Builder • Custom Scenarios • AI mechanics|
|Multiplayer||Connections • Skirmish|