Medieval II: Total War is played on the huge map of Europeand partially in the Middle East, Africa, and even the New World. The map is divided into provinces that can be conquered. Each province can have either a city or a castle built in it. Cities are the primary source of income, while castles are used mainly for military purposes, such as recruiting an experienced army and providing a solid defense against enemy troops.
While on this map, players take turns to build new structures, recruit an army and agents and order them to move or declare attacks. Declared battles are then resolved in real-time, where you are able to command your units and order them to march forward, flank the enemy army, or hide in the forest, for example. Attacking the castle can turn into a siege battle, where siege equipment should be used to breach the walls.
Religion plays a huge role in the game with Christians fighting against Muslims over the holy land of Jerusalem. The Pope can call crusades against hostile provinces, while Muslim imams can declare jihads. Failing to answer the Pope’s call may result in excommunication.
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