News Archives: 2012
Happy New Year!
Here, we find ourselves again in that period of the year. In the battle with Time, we never win, so all we can do, is enjoy every second of our life. Some of you may have had a great time in 2012, while for some, it may have been a though year. Either way, we should always enjoy our time as much as we can and smile where possible. Learn from the past, live in the present, and think in the future!
On behalf of the Stronghold Heaven Staff I would like to wish everyone a Happy New Year, and may 2013 bring everyone the best moments of your life yet.
Stronghold HD and Stronghold Crusader HD released!
Stronghold HD and Stronghold Crusader HD are now available for purchase at GOG, Amazon, GetGames and DotEmu and to celebrate Firefly Studios has launched two new websites showcasing the titles. If you already have the original games, you can download the HD patches for free!
The new websites showcase the games’ HD battlefield view, which allows players to zoom out and play in real-time with the entire map on one screen. Players can advance on the castle gates while flanking the enemy from behind, feign retreat and lead their foes into a deadly trap or just sit back and watch the destruction unfold.
More information on the games can be found at
www.strongholdhd.com and www.strongholdcrusaderhd.com.
Also, Darren from Firefly Studios has opened a thread about the games in our forums HERE
Firefly Studios to Launch Space Colony HD in November
Firefly Studios, creators of the Stronghold series, has just announced that sci-fi strategy sim Space Colony is being re-released next month in the form of Space Colony HD.
Described by PC Gamer as “A fun, refreshingly light-hearted and deviously challenging sim”, Space Colony was released in 2003 to a warm critical reception from publications such as GameSpy, GamePro and G4 TV.
Space Colony HD has players build a base on different planets throughout the galaxy, defending it from hostile alien threats while also keeping their ragtag crew of colonists alive and content. Your colourful crew includes the amicable Venus Jones, Scandinavian biker Stig Svensson, cybernetics expert Mr. Zhang and even former chicken farmer Billy-Bob Perkins. Each character has a unique personality with specific skills and needs, as well as different interactions. While keeping the crew happy is important, players must also keep them alive, maintaining oxygen levels, work productivity and defending against hostile alien threats.
Space Colony is not your run of the mill life simulator. The game features a wealth of different structures, weapons, aliens and real-time strategy mechanics befitting of a base builder. Establishing mining operations, colonist facilities and perimeter defences is up to the player, as is deciding which planets to colonise. As a throwback to the Stronghold games, players can choose to take a “Military” or “Civilian” path through the game, battling indigenous life or building intergalactic golf courses instead.
Space Colony HD updates the original strategy sim with high definition graphics and a greater field of view, often allowing players to see attacks on their base and points of interest at a glance, without the need to scroll around the map. The game has been remastered to support resolutions up to 2560×1600, up from the previous cap of 1280×1024.
Space Colony HD is set for digital release on GOG, Amazon, GetGames and other notable online retailers on 8th November 2012.
Stronghold and Stronghold Crusader – Reborn in HD
Unexpected and thrilling news from Firefly Studios! It has been announced that the first 2 Stronghold games will feature an amazing change in the coming month. As the title suggests, Stronghold HD and Stronghold Crusader HD will come up to meet the fans with a new redesigned look, having high-quality graphics and buildings.
And that’s not all. More basic features are:
– Game ability to support resolutions up to 2560×1600
– HD battlefield view;
– Zooming in and out on the battlefield in realtime
That will give the players more strategy opportunities while improving the gameplay feeling.
Stronghold HD version will also come up with 21 missions and 4 renegate lords to defeat, all over different strategical tasks, with the goal to reunite the medieval England
Stronghold Crusader HD shifts from Europe to Middle East with missions from the First, Second and Third Crusades. In addition, it will include new fiendish AI opponents, new units, new characters, 4 historical campaigns and over 100 unique skirmish missions. Stronghold Crusader HD comes packaged with content from both the Stronghold Warchest and Stronghold Crusader Extreme, including an increased unit cap of 10,000, new missions and special Tactical Powers.
Stronghold Kingdoms Goes Gold
Stronghold Kingdoms Goes Gold
London, UK – October, 2012 – Firefly Studios, creators of the second most popular free to play game on Steam, has just announced that their popular Castle MMO has now gone gold, with a release date set for Wednesday 17th October 2012.
Firefly Studios has just announced that Stronghold Kingdoms will be leaving its open beta phase next week. Following on from the addition of Quests, the new Coat of Arms Designer, graphical updates and a milestone of one million registered players, Stronghold Kingdoms will be released with a new update that adds all-new sound effects to the game.
New sound effects have been one of the most frequently requested features for Stronghold Kingdoms, adding a layer of immersion to the game that appeals to players new and old. Battles now rumble with the marching and clash of armies, scouts can be heard galloping to their next target and traders carting off to the parish capital with their goods. There are also a number of sounds added to the user interface, providing better feedback for players.
Nick Tannahill, Marketing Manager at Firefly Studios, had the following to say concerning the new release. “In the current free to play climate it’s not uncommon for games to stay in beta for more than a year before seeing release. In the case of Kingdoms we wanted to wait until the game felt complete before leaving beta and with the new sound effects we feel we’ve achieved that. This is really a celebration of all the tweaking, balancing and feature building the team has been doing over the past year and a half. We feel it’s a milestone worthy of a full release.”
The release of Stronghold Kingdoms makes no change to the free to play model on which the game was built. Players will still be able to download and play Kingdoms for free at www.strongholdkingdoms.com.
More information on Stronghold Kingdoms and Firefly Studios can be found at www.strongholdkingdoms.com and www.fireflyworlds.com. Kingdoms can be found on Facebook at www.facebook.com/StrongholdKingdoms and on Twitter @SHKingdoms.
Stonghold Crusader II Announced!
London, UK – 30th August 2012 Strategy fans around the world rejoice, Firefly Studios has just announced the next entry in the legendary Stronghold series with Stronghold Crusader 2. Set to march across digital battlefields in late 2013, Stronghold Crusader 2 will take legions of Stronghold fans back to the ancient deserts of the Middle East for more real-time mayhem between brutal knights and fiery Caliphs.
Firefly Studios will raise the stakes and build upon the trademark gameplay of the original Stronghold Crusader with stunning new visuals, a sleek new battle interface, and engine enhancements including effects, animations, and real-time physics. Stronghold Crusader 2 promises epic fast-paced skirmishes against fiendish AI opponents will breakout on all-new maps with new unit classes, new traps, and new castle designs unlike any seen before in the series.
“Stronghold Crusader is our favorite game, it’s our fans’ favorite game and it’s the game we have been waiting to put into production for several long years now. Now Firefly Studios finally has that chance and we will not disappoint,” said Simon Bradbury, CEO of Firefly Studios and Designer of Stronghold Crusader 2.
Over the past decade, the Stronghold series has sold over 6 million games under the Stronghold, Stronghold Crusader, and Stronghold Kingdom banners.
“The original Stronghold Crusader has been a huge success since its launch ten years ago, selling over 2.5 million units and still going strong and we get constant requests for more,” said Eric Ouellette, President of Firefly Studios.
Stronghold Crusader 2 is in development and funded by Firefly Studios themselves and the team will seek additional funds through game-focused crowd sourcing service Gambitious. Additional funding provided by Stronghold and Firefly Studios fans will go towards polish, additional content, and self-publishing the game.
“Crowd funding is a revolution for small, independent developers like ourselves and through Gambitious we hope to supplement the development of Stronghold Crusader 2,” said Eric. “With the support of our fans we can release Stronghold Crusader 2 when it’s absolutely perfect and push the game to new heights.”
More news and information on Stronghold Crusader 2 can be found at StrongholdCrusader2.com and fans can help fund the latest crusade at Gambitious.com. Follow @SHCrusaderTwo and @gambitiousinc for updates on the crowd funding campaign and updates on pre-production of Stronghold Crusader 2.
And the winner is…
Games Group I: 2 Judges, 3 possible Stronghold games, 4 months given to finish the work, 10 competitors and 10 scenarios. One winner.
Lords and Ladies, winner of Games Group I, which is part of the 2nd Stronghold Heaven Fantasy Contest, is… Duc Volpe a.k.a Leto with his incredible fantasy scenario DAO – Ostagar!
There was a real challenge to pick a single winner since most maps had an impressive quality, each bringing out different features and highly original ideas. We, the judges, have also decided upon the 2nd and 3rd place, even though only the 1st place will get the prize.
Being quite close to winning, WL_D Arthus and his The Devil’s Elbow gets 2nd place!
The honorable 3rd place goes to La LUmiere a.k.a. Lord Falkord and his scenario callled The City of Falkions
Reviews to each scenario will follow in the near future as the maps get published on the Stronghold Heaven Downloads section. Make sure you congratulate the winner and comment on the competition thread!
The 2nd SHH Fantasy Contest – Winners Decided.
It’s been a while since the Contest has closed its doors. Back then, one of the two possible winners have already been announced – Sir_Vet for Games Group II (SH2/SHL)
Games Group I was left with 10 entries and a long battle to be taken by the judges, in order to figure out what is the best out of all the scenarios. We had a few issues to go over, which was the cause of all the delay. Unfortunately one of the issues consisted in a judge – Peter2008 – who turned inactive and couldn’t judge anymore.
The decision, winner of Games Group I, was taken by DeSteff2222 and I (Lord_of_Hell). It was a tremendous task: Most of the entries had an impressive quality while others had shined through different gameplay aspects. To remind everyone, the competitors were as follows: PaultheDubious (SH-K), Korsfarer Mogens, LordBlackadder, Duc Volpe (SH-K), Charles of Tours (SH-K), Fayez2010, Sir_Vet, WL_D Arthus, La LUmiere (SFH) and Heroesflorian
The judges decision regarding who is the winner will be made public on 8th August, over few days! Untill then, make sure you keep an eye on Stronghold Heaven and the forums!
Stronghold 3: Gold Edition – Coming soon.
Firefly has announced the release of Stronghold 3: Gold Edition for PC and MAC on 25 May 2012. It bundles a new “Blackstaff” single player campaign and it will unlock all 12 historical sieges, previously only available through special editions of the game.
Set during the events of Stronghold 3’s main story, the Blackstaff Campaign follows Thomas Blackstaff as he hunts down the three escaped sons of The Rat. Your journey will take you across the sea to your former home on Greyshore Island and pit you against the evil Brotherhood, who in your youth forced you into exile.
Stronghold 3: Gold Edition features all the extra content and tweaks added to Stronghold 3 since release. This includes 3 core campaigns (including the new Blackstaff Campaign), 4 multiplayer modes (including the new Coronation mode), a free build sandbox mode and 12 historical sieges.
Anyone that purchased Stronghold 3 before the launch of the Gold Edition on 25 May will have their copy of the game automatically upgraded to Stronghold 3: Gold Edition through Steam. Those who purchase the standard edition of Stronghold 3 after this date will have the option to purchase the Blackstaff Campaign (including access to all 12 historical sieges) as downloadable content.
New Stronghold 3 Patch announced by Firefly
Firefly Studios has announced the next patch for Stronghold 3. Patch version 1.10.27781 is expected to be released next Friday, 11 May 2012. According to Firefly, the patch features major changes to the core game including faster peasants, increased immigration rates, increased farm output, terrain height advantage for ranged units and a new Market. In addition the new Coronation multiplayer mode will be added, featuring upgradable keeps with their own defences and extra housing for workers and troops.
A full list of changes and fixes will be released along with the patch publication on Steam next week.
Stronghold Heaven – Week Map 12
It’s been a while since we last spotlighted a recently created user scenario and what better way to start the month than by reviving the Week Map news?
And not any map, but here’s a special one. LegionHero is the author of Week Map 12 called Rise of an Empire – chapter 1. The gameplay starts in a small-scaled battleground style, thrilling and forcing the player to test his fighting skills right from the very start. The economical part is also highly entertaining, as the beautiful surroundings of the map doesn’t let anyone get bored.
All in all it’s a great map, more than worth playing.
Be sure to Download & Play It and check the Week Maps thread.
The 2nd Stronghold Heaven Fantasy Contest has closed.
The time has come for the Stronghold Heaven mapmaking contest to close its doors as the 1st April deadline has been reached. However it is not the end, but only the beginning! During three exciting months plenty people have come to compete with each other in creating the best Fantasy Scenario. For the competitors it has been a quite challenging event as most of them pushed their mapmaking skills above their usual level, improving in the same time. Yet for the judges the challenge has only recently started. In the next week or two, each map will go through a very close analysis in order to decide which of them truly deserves to win.
On behalf of the Stronghold Heaven Staff I’d like to thank to all the people who showed interest in the competition, even if some of them could not find the time to finish the scenario in time. The competitors are as follows:
PaultheDubious (SH-K), Korsfarer Mogens, LordBlackadder, Duc Volpe (SH-K), Charles of Tours (SH-K*), Fayez2010, Sir_Vet, WL_D Arthus, La LUmiere (SFH**) and Heroesflorian
– and they are all competing in Games Group I. Only one user has also sent an entry for Games Group II making him already a straight winner! The scenario has been analyzed by GGII Judges (Doomsword & Stratego) and Sir_Vet is now declared a winner for Games Group II!
Games Group I (SH1/SHC/SHC:E) is judged by Peter2008, DeSteff2222 and I (Lord_of_Hell) . Analyzing and comparing all the maps will certainly be a hard task but the winner will be more than worth of winning.
The competitors are now free to submit their scenarios to the Stronghold Heaven Downloads Section. After the other winner will have been announced, each scenario that was a part of the contest will receive a review by one of the judges. The winner map will get 3 reviews, each written by one of the 3 judges.
I hope everyone had fun in the competition and rest assured it’s just one of the many that will follow!
Small Update: La LUmiere and Heroesflorian have recently submitted 2 delayed entries. We decided to accept them since they’ve contacted us before 1st April asking for a few more hours. They are the last submissions we accept though.
*SH-K stands for Stronghold-Knights fansite.
**SFH stands for Stronghold French Heaven fansite.
Stronghold Kingdoms expands to the Moon!
Firefly Studios will launch the first Moon server on 1st April, coinciding with the anniversary of the birth of Scottish singer Susan Boyle. Also the Moon-based map is not all – the new server will feature new gameplay elements like attacks that can drift off into space, rocket-powered Scouts and Moon Wolves.
Firefly hopes Moon 1 won’t be the last “frontier” in 2012. For a representative picture click here.
Stronghold Kingdoms on the wave!
With Stronghold Kingdoms on the wave and because even more players are joining the MMO game, Firefly Studios has launched English World 5 to support the heavy load from World 3 and 4 which are also recently set up.
Stronghold Kingdoms has, according to Firefly Studios, over 500.000 registered players now, an impressive number which has been reached on 8th March at 13:06 GMT by user �zkimal�.
Stronghold Kingdoms Voted “Best Strategy Download MMO”
Stronghold Kingdoms has won the player-voted award or “Audience Award” for “Best Strategy Download MMO” in MMO Facts‘ MMO of the Year awards. The full list of winners can be viewed here.
In addition, Stronghold Kingdoms now features another English world – World 4 – to support the new generation of MMO gamers.
Stronghold 3 Patch 1.9.26498 released
Firefly Studios released patch version 1.9.26498. It includes many improvements but most of all it is based on multiplayer fixes. View the list of fixes here at SHH or here at firefly
To download the patch, simply run your Steam client and the patch will download automatically.
Stronghold Kingdoms – World 3 Is Now Live!
Firefly Studios added a new server to Stronghold Kingdoms. The third English-language world or more known as ‘World 3’ was launched yesterday evening in response to the many new Kingdoms gamers.
With that said, have fun on the new territory!
Firefly Studios Interviewed by Trendy Gamers
Website Trendy Gamers decides to have an interview with Firefly Studios discussing various gaming matters. Simon Bradbury, Lead Designer and CEO of Firefly Studios talks about most of the Stronghold games and also CivCity: Rome and Dungeon: Hero.
Read the entire interview here.
Stronghold Heaven – Week Map 11
Obviously it was just a matter of time before skilled mapmaker Stratego would create a scenario worth of the Week Map spotlighting. It also happens it is one of the few Stronghold 3 quality scenarios and the second one to be newsed.
Stratego weighs in on SH3 with his well crafted Economic Scenario “Hate out of Jealousy”. Build your resources and prosper in a wild landscape from Statego’s experienced mapmaking intellect!
Download the map from here and check the Week Maps thread.
Stronghol Kingdoms nominated for “MMO of the Year”
As announced by Firefly Studios, Stronghold Kingdoms has been nominated in MMO Facts’ player poll for “MMO of the Year”.
In a public poll presented by MMO Facts Stronghold Kingdoms has been nominated for award in the category of “Best Strategy Download MMO”. The competition covers in-browser, download and mobile platforms and features well over 50 different free-to-play and pay-to-play MMO games. MMO Facts have been running similar awards for browser games since 2005 and have, with this year’s competition, decided to include download and mobile categories. Tens of thousands of players are expected to cast their vote, which can be given to Kingdoms by following this link.
Voting ends on 03/01/2012. For more on the competition visit this website.
Stronghold Heaven – Week Map 10
After another short break of Week Maps we’re back on track and starting next week we are also going to spotlight some great old maps that did’t get the attention they deserved.
This week’s map is Wadi l-Kbir by Korsfarer Mogens and what makes it original is the tricky gameplay that the author has created within a short and simple scripting. The design features a poor desert with few rocky formations. It is definitely a special and fun scenario which is worth playing through.
Next SH3 patch announced by Firefly Studios
Yesterday Firefly Studios announced they are working on the next patch for Stronghold 3 which “will focus on improving multiplayer stability, including a system for automatically re-syncing multiplayer games (similar to the system in Stronghold 1 and Crusader)”
The patch is expected to be released in late February/early March
Stronghold Kingdoms Event!
Good news for Stronghold Kingdoms players!
Starting today, 9th February 2012 Stronghold Kingdoms is offering players up to $80 worth of Crowns, the game’s virtual currency, for each friend invited into the game through the new “Invite a Friend” feature under the “My Account” drop-down menu in the top bar.
You can invite as many of your friends as you like, up to 30 at a time. The reward, up to $80 worth of Crowns, depends on the size of your first Crowns purchase.
Firefly Studios SH3 competition on Twitter!
Firefly Studios gives you the chance to win a copy of Stronghold 3 by simply telling in a couple of words why you consider yourself a Stronghold fan. Check out Twitter to try your luck!
— Firefly Studios (@fireflyworlds) February 1, 2012
Stronghold Heaven Contest – Update!
One month has passed by since the competition has started. So far most of the people interested have announced their participation already and they are now working on the maps. Among our users, people from other gaming fansites like Stronghold-Knights and Stronghold French Heaven joined the fun to compete against some of the well-known and very good mapmakers from SHH: AZ ViTrAzhAs, Warlord_Designs (Arthus) and TheDragonheart. Besides them, Stronghold Heaven comes with several more good mapmakers. The competitors from Stronghold-Knights are Aleks S I, Charles of Tours, Duc Volpe, PaultheDubious while the competitors from Stronghold French Heaven are La LUmiere, Gryfon and Sir Killer CDL.
This is an update with people who have announced their participation so far but of course one can just submit an entry without announcing. On another hand, there is still plenty of time for mapmaking for anyone interested in the contest – entries are closing on 1st April 2012. The custom forum title that we are giving the winners might not seem much but competitors should keep in mind that only one active user has currently a custom title and that is WLD_Arthus. Winning the contest and having an account title would automatically gain anyone respect and a more known nickname giving his achievement. There is a chance for everybody but most of all the feeling and fun of designing a contest map is different than creating a “normal” scenario.
With that said, we wish everyone to have fun designing and good luck competing! The Fantasy Scenario Competition can be found here.
Stronghold Week Maps, YouTube videos and Competitions are all new activities in the recent times. Now Stronghold Heaven prepares for a new periodical project which will have the premiere in a couple of days. Stay ready for interesting info and be sure to check SHH periodically!
Fans Rewarded for Lego SH:K Stop Motion Animation
At the end of 2010 Firefly asked fans to send in Stronghold or Christmas themed images for the chance to win in-game prizes. Winners were revealed daily in an advent calendar style competition. In 2011 Firefly reached out to these same people, asking them to send in any and all fan-made Stronghold videos.
All developers have the occasional fan video sent in, but nothing makes a one smile quite like seeing their game recreated in glorious Lego stop motion. Over Christmas a few players, who are now officially Firefly’s biggest fans, sent such a video. They have been contacted for a reward and had their work immortalized on the Firefly website.
Follow the link below to see a bustling Lego village built around one very drunk, sleepy bumpkin. See resource gathering, weapon making, castle building and cow catapulting all rendered in wonderful bricky animation: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lucYbUd08Pw
Stronghold 3: Firefly Studios Interview with Hooked Gamers
Simon Bradbury from Firefly Studios talked with Hooked Gamers in an interview about Stronghold 3.
Stronghold 3 Lead Designer Simon Bradbury recently sat down with the fine folks at Hooked Gamers for an interview discussing all things Stronghold 3 post release.
Entitled as “Stronghold 3: losing a battle, winning the war”, Simon talks about the Game’s past issues, present actions and future goals.
You can read the interview on Hooked Gamers website.
Patch 1.8.25866 for SH3 released
Firefly has released patch 1.8.25866 for Stronghold 3. There are plenty of fixes, including for multiplayer.
We have released a patch (1.8.25866) for Stronghold 3 on Steam. To download the patch, simply run your Steam client and the patch will download automatically.
-Patrol added – Troops can now be set to patrol between 2 patrol points (see below for more information).
-Barracks Assembly Points added – Individual troop types can now form up at designated assembly points (see below for more information).
-Reworked wall system to prevent small sections of wall remaining after deleting walls (This is fixed for newly placed walls, some pre-placed walls will still have occasional issues).
Stronghold Heaven – Week Map 9
So here it is, the first Stronghold 3 Week Map. User gruso has taken the time to create the first SH3 scenario that gets spotlighted. Recommended by Doomsword, The Old Mountain Fortress is a Military Mission that promises to be challenging and has also a decent landscape and a good use of the editor’s tools.
Next Stronghold 3 Patch Announced
Firefly Studios announced the next patch for Stronghold 3, which is expected to be released before the end of the week:
UPDATE – Jan 19:
The latest Stronghold 3 Patch will now be released mid-next week. The extra time will however allow us to implement barracks assembly points.
A new Patch for Stronghold 3 will be released before the end of the week
We are currently finishing up work on a new patch for Stronghold 3 that includes fixes relating to walls in both single and multiplayer, stuck woodcutters and crashes with the ATI x1950 video card. We’ve also fixed a number of crashes from savegames sent in by players and sync issues in multiplayer.
A full list of additions, tweaks and bug fixes will be provided in the patch notes once the patch goes live toward the end of this week.
Stronghold 3 Video Walkthroughs
Do you have trouble beating the Stronghold 3 military missions? Nowadays it’s easy to look for a video on YouTube that solves your gaming problems but not all professional gamers can do a good walkthrough. With years of experience on creating video walkthroughs, Barbarius, the Admin of a French Stronghold fansite known as the Stronghold French Heaven created videos for some of the military missions and economical mission #6.
Stronghold Heaven – Week Map 8
Meadows by Fayez2010 is the first map to be spotlighted in the Week Map News this year and the author is also the first mapmaker who brings two maps to our periodical news event. In this very special map he used plenty of tricks that not only look excellent but also gives a great feeling while playing. In addition, fayez made sure the balance and tasks are just as memorable, bringing challenges in beautiful surroundings. Make sure you download, play it and comment Week Map News in this thread.
Due to the Fantasy Mapmaking Contest we are holding, which plenty mapmakers already announced their participation, the Week Map news might change its periodicity from weekly to every two weeks. On another hand we may choose to spotlight older worthy maps in between the Week Map News. Make sure you keep an eye on the Stronghold Heaven news for memorable scenarios and events!
Next Stronghold 3 Patch – v1.7.25411
Firefly Studios announced the patch v1.7.25411 yesterday.
Happy New Year everyone. We will be releasing a small patch later today to fix a few issues reported over the holidays, including a fix for the missions not unlocking bug. Check out the patch notes below. We are currently working on the next (more substantial) patch to be released soon.
The 2nd Fantasy Scenario Competition!
Lords and Ladies, this year brings contests! On behalf of the Stronghold Heaven Staff I would like to invite everyone to compete in The 2nd Fantasy Scenario Competition. As the title suggests, we are looking for fantasy/ficticious scenarios that can be set in any of the 6 games: SH1, SHC, SH2, SH:L, SHC:E or SH3. The scenario content is entirely up to you. The competition is designed to allow you all to let your imaginations run riot!
The closing date for entries is 1st April 2012. The judging time will depend on the number of entries. Afterwards, the winners and their maps will be spotlighted in a news post. What is the prize? The winners will get a Custom Title in the forums.
Make sure you view the contest thread for guidelines and details regarding the contest!