Is Manor Lords multiplayer?

 Manor Lords raised sword and red flag. .
Manor Lords raised sword and red flag. .

Over the last few months, the strategic city-builder, Manor Lords, from developer Hooded Horse has maintained the position as the top-most wishlisted game on Steam. But now, the indie game is finally launching into early access for PC, Xbox and Xbox Game Pass on April 26, 2024. Hooded Horse's simulation game seems to have a lot in common with Age of Empires at first glance, but it's also wildly different. One of the ways it differs is in regards to multiplayer.

BTW, Manor Lords is currently on sale for PC at CDKeys.

Is Manor Lords multiplayer?

No. As of right now, it is only a single-player game. It's possible that the developers could add multiplayer as time goes on, but last we heard through a Reddit response in 2020, the devs want to "polish the single player element first before considering multi."

Specifically, back in 2020 Reddit user, @Willaguy, asked in the Manor Lords subreddit if there were "any plans for multiplayer?" To which, Slavic Magic dev, @gstyczen, responded, "Thanks! I want to polish the single player element first before considering multi." So it sounds like multiplayer isn't out of the question, it's just definitely not here at early access launch.

What is Manor Lords gameplay like?

Since the focus is on single-player, city-building simulation, Manor Lords gameplay is all about managing specific buildings, human NPCs, and even animal NPCs. Your goal is to create a thriving location where the economy booms and the people are protected from external threats such as attacking invaders or challenges brought on by the seasons.

Your civilization can run like a well-oiled machine, but only if you have all of the working parts necessary to keep it running smoothly. This requires you to have roads for smooth transport, families with specific village roles, and plenty of facilities to... facilitate certain services. Plan things accordingly as a medieval lord so that your city will evolve and continue on successfully.

How does Manor Lords differ from Age of Empires?

Manor Lords village road.
Manor Lords village road.

Whenever a medieval city builder with strategic elements releases it inevitably gets compared to Age of Empires — arguably the best Real-time Strategy (RTS) game of all time. However, Manor Lords is quite a bit different from AoE. One of the key differences is that in AoE your kind of this omnipotent, nebulous being who controls everyone whereas in Manor Lords you're literally a lord trying to keep your people happy while making your lands more successful.

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Both games rely on you as a player to assign villager or family jobs and plan the best locations for various buildings. Additionally, both games allow you to evolve facility functions or buildings so you can grow more powerful over time. However, Manor Lords gives more minute control over certain aspects of the game that AoE doesn't.

There's a Manor Lords Development skill tree that unlocks additional perks, but there's also a Policies tab on the skill tree menu where you lay down rules people follow. For instance, policies might influence how much food your villagers consume or how fast animals breed. However, there might be a cost for implementing certain rules such as making it so your people aren't as happy with how you're running things, which could lead to other problems down the line. As such, you need strike a balance between creating an efficient city without upsetting everyone.

As seasons change, the challenges you face also change. You will need to adapt and prepare for the inevitable difficulties brought on by weather or various times of the year.

Dive in and experience the fun yourself

One thing is for certain. Given how many people have wishlisted Manor Lords on Steam this game from Slavic Magic and Hooded Horse is likely going to sell very well when it releases in early access on April 26, 2024. Thankfully, it's launching on both Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Xbox Game Pass, and PC so you can access it from your preferred platform.

While the game currently doesn't offer co-op or competitive multiplayer it's very possible that additional modes and options could be added to the game as time goes on. This is more likely to happen if the game proves to play well and sits well with fans. The more money a game earns, the more the developer and publisher can work on it.

From what I've seen so far, Manor Lords looks like it could be a fantastic city builder sim. It seems to provide familiar mechanics we'd expect from this genre while also adding a new spin on them to keep strategic thinkers happy. Sure, multiplayer could add to the fun, but a solo adventure I can play on my own without feeling like I'm missing out on playing with friends is also very appealing. If you're interested, you'll have to check the game out when it launches into early access.

Manor Lords launches in Early Access on April 26, 2024, on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, and Steam for Windows PCs. You can currently purchase Manor Lords for PC on sale at CDKeys.

Manor Lords (PC)

Plan out your medieval village and evolve it into a bustling city. You'll need to prepare against potential attacks from enemy forces and plan your economy carefully in order to thrive. Don't forget to keep your people happy along the way.

Buy at: CDKeys (Steam) | GOG (Steam)View Deal