A blog post from developer TaleWorlds Entertainment late last week revealed a plethora of details regarding the Aserai, Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord‘s latest faction.
Named after the legendary patriarch Asera, whom all Aserai claim as an ancestor, the new faction is based within the Nahasa, the Bronze desert—a place subject to the unrelenting onslaught of the sun. Divided into dozens of clans and sub-clans, the Aserai are based on the historical Arab tribes just before the great Islamic conquests of the seventh century.
While many associate middle-eastern armies with mounted archers, the Arab cultures that influenced the creation of the Aserai fought with short sword, long spear, and foot bow, while mounted warriors made use of lances. In addition, the Aserai use javelins, a weapon favored by the Berbers that appeared in Islamic armies fairly early in history. The Aserai are proud of their horses, and each of the faction’s equine breeds has been given unique characteristics.
As with all Bannerlord cultures, the Aserai have several minor factions such as the nomadic Jawwal and a brotherhood of slave-warriors known as the Ghilman, who represent the forerunners to the Mamluks. Drawing inspiration from tales such as The Thousand and One Nights, Aserai towns will be controlled by back-alley organized crime. As said in the blog post, “the desert of the south will be hard to rule and dangerous to traverse, but the other realms ignore it at their peril, lest it suddenly throw forth a host capable of bringing empires to their knees.”
No release date for Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord has been announced as of yet, though interested readers can check out Dylan Warman’s July preview of the game here, and view some gameplay trailers here.
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