In most respects, 1866 plays like the original Mount&Blade. The player can join one of several factions, take quests from NPCs (including many custom ones, though they are unfinished), and try to grow both in wealth and renown. The game is in a sandbox format as in the original game, allowing the player to decide his or her path in the world.
1866 does have adult content. Foul language is used in the dialogue, and players can solicit prostitutes to raise their party's morale. Although no graphic depictions of sexual activity are ever displayed in game, there are occasional paintings of nude women.
1866 features four major factions and several minor ones that the player can associate themselves. The major factions are the United States, Mexico, Comanche, and Apache. The player is unable to recruit party members from towns unless they have aligned themselves with one of the major factions, though they can still hire gunman or other help from saloons.
Bandit gangs, lawmen, and Confederate renegades make up some of the minor factions in 1866, and the player can gain positive or negative reputations with all of them. One change in 1866 from the standard renown and relations system in Mount&Blade is that each week, if a player has not worked to maintain or approve (or damage) his or her relationship with a faction, then their relations move a little closer to neutral. Thus, it's possible that if a player has angered a faction by his actions, those relations will eventually cool given time in-game.
Quest giver NPCs within the factions are often drawn from actual historical figures of the time period, such as military leaders from the Civil War or the Apache leader Geronimo.
Upon character creation, players in 1866 can choose to be American, Mexican, or Native American. Then they answer a series of questions related to their character's background, including their father's background and whether they took a side in the Civil War. These choices, as usual, affect a character's starting attributes and equipment.
When distributing attributes and skill points, players of 1866 will notice a few changes from standard Mount&Blade. A "stockpiling" skill is included, which allows the player to hold larger amounts of ammunition with more ranks in the skill. This replaces the "Shield" skill from the standard game.
A unique feature of 1866 for Indian characters is the ability to customize the player's war paint. This feature is made available through the camp menu in game, and the war paint can be displayed on the character by equipping an inventory item.
Items and EquipmentEdit
A number of historically accurate items and weapons are available in game, from Derringer or Smith & Wesson firearms to Union soldier uniforms to feathered headgear for Native Americans.
Horse breeds are also updated to the Western setting, and some can be purchased with Indian war paint.
- Rifles & "Long Guns":
- Confederate Enfield Rifle
- Cavalry Musket
- Henry Repeating Rifle
- North Navy
- Colt Peacemaker
- Double Barrel Pistol
- Swords and Bladed Weapons:
The wild west setting is detailed on the overland map and in in-game scenes. Old western saloons, banks, and barbershops can be seen along the streets of cities and settlements, the heads of buffalo adorn the walls of commanding officers' quarters, and Indian camps are filled with tents.
Many towns have smaller locations nestled within them, such as hotels or banks. The hotels are often bases for gangs of bandits or lawmen.
Currency in 1866 is rendered in dollars and cents. Though vendors list their items only in cents (thus, a pistol might cost 2200 cents, or $22), in the player's inventory the game converts currency to include dollars and cents.
1866 also offers some unique custom elements add authenticity to the western setting. Players can gamble at blackjack in a minigame simulation available in the saloons.
Players can also hunt deer or buffalo by finding herds of the creatures on the overland map, then entering a battle scene. Players must be quick to kill the animals before the herds scatter. Successfully hunting a deer or buffalo rewards the player with meat (a food item) and skins which can be sold for cash.
1866 has tended to receive high reviews from players. It has received a composite score of 4.7/5 in voting on the Mount&Blade Unofficial File Repository.