Total War: Medieval 2 mobile review - back in the saddle (2024)

Our Verdict

Total War: Medieval 2 mobile review - back in the saddle (1)

Total War: Medieval 2 holds up, there's no doubt about it. It's still one of the best strategy titles ever made. But the concessions to fit this fiddly thing onto a small screen are clear, and anyone who's thinking of jumping in needs to ask themselves whether they just want to play the game again, or if they actually need it on their mobile phone. If it's the latter, then go for it. It's a good enough port.

Total War: Medieval 2 came out in 2006. I was eight years old. My parents ran their own business at the time, and my sister and I would use their computers to play games. We had them both set up right next to each other. I remember us playing a lot of The Sims together, talking about each other’s design choices. I remember playing Lemmings a lot too. But most of all, I remember playing Total War games.

I start like this because, well, of course, I love this game. It’s second only to Rome: Total War (the biggest influence on me choosing to do a degree in Classics, probably). I remember the famous quotes on the loading screens. I remember every line of dialogue said by your army, a general before a battle, or the silly accent that the French diplomats have. It’s mixed into the rivulets of my being. So I love it.

But, as any grand strategy fan knows, they can be a bit fiddly. Whether you’re playing a Total War game or Civilization, it’s always best played on a computer. Or at least, that was the case. Crusader Kings III, a new all-timer in the genre, just made quite a successful transfer over to consoles. And Civilization VI has lived on console and mobile very successfully for a while now. Heck, I have loads of hours in the mobile version. It’s great!

So, what I’m getting at, albeit slowly, is that big fiddly strategy titles don’t need to be stuck on PC. But they do need to be transferred to touch screen devices quite carefully. I love the mobile port of Rome: Total War that Feral Interactive did a few years back, mainly because it’s one of the best games ever made, but it wasn’t as slick as I would like. That’s because, unlike almost every other game in the genre, Total War games have a battle system that requires quite a bit of real-time strategy.

Total War: Medieval 2 presents you with a map, as you’d expect, and shows the areas you control. If you choose England as your starting faction, then you have control over London, Nottingham, and Caen. In this overworld map, you control your finances, diplomacy, barracks, and cities. Build new buildings for better defence or higher income, train some soldiers for an upcoming war, and try your best to stay on everybody’s good side.

But, eventually, it’s time to fight. It doesn’t take long, to be honest. The first mission is to take a nearby, rebel-controlled city – York, in the case of England. That’s when you get down to business, zooming into a small map, with the city walls in the distance. Here, you have to position your troops for battle, and then direct their movement. Use pincer movements or flanking to get the best chance at victory, destroy the walls or bring ladders to help with the siege, and hopefully you win.

It all looks really good throughout. The overworld map is crisp, and moving around it is quick and responsive. In battles, zooming in to see your soldiers slashing away is as thrilling as it ever was. I’m surprised that the game holds up so well, visually. It did make my iPhone 11 get very hot, mind you, and suck away thebattery, but that’s to be expected with big games like this.

From there, these various mechanics – both overworld diplomacy and conquest, and large-scale battles – are your method for conquering the world. Various events can take place, and certain factions have different goals in order for the conquest to be complete. As England, for example, you have to control Jerusalem, along with a set number of other settlements. The thrill of painting the whole map your faction’s colour is still there, even on the small screen.

There have been some UI tweaks for Medieval 2 that make it a lot slicker than you’d imagine. While it can still be finicky while trying to pull off a quick manoeuvre at a crunch point mid-battle, the experience is smooth for the most part. The first battle I played, taking the city of York, gave me the same thrill the original game did. It can be nail-biting stuff, and it’s been translated well enough.

On the overworld map, everything is much better than the Rome mobile port. It’s easier to manage notifications and settlements. Micromanaging is reduced with a new auto-management system for your militia only. Pretty much every issue I have with the previous port has been improved. There’s still a lot of information to fit on a tiny screen, but it’s definitely more legible.

There are some nice quality of life enhancements, too. Once you’ve got a game save, if you quit out and come back, rather than going through the menus again, a pop-up lets you go straight back into the game. That’s ace. I know it’s to be expected with mobile games, but it’s not with ports of 20-year-old strategy titles. So, yeah, nice one.

The main issue with Medieval 2 on a mobile phone is the hardware. I’m playing on an iPhone 11, and the screen is just a bit too small for me to feel comfortable. Dragging a path for units always feels inaccurate, as my thumb is in the way of the screen. Navigating menus can also be tricky, and I often hit buttons I don’t want to.

There are, of course, inevitable drawbacks to porting a game like this to a phone, and who am I to say if there’s a better way to do it? Either way, it’s not perfect. And that’s the main discussion for anyone who wants this game. Did you play it next to your sister when you were eight years old? And do you just want to play it again, or do you specifically want to play it on your phone?

When I was at university, I worked in the student union merchandise shop. This job was wallpaper-dull. Like most university students, I didn’t go to class much, but when I did, I made sure to have my computer and a strategy game to play for the bone-dry lecture about St. Agustine’s Confessions or whatever. I mean, I loved my degree, but I didn’t love St. Augustine, lemme tell ya.

So, I had two very boring things to do in my life: work and lectures. One of them I could have a computer in front of me, one of them I couldn’t. But I could have a phone out, discreetly, when a computer was off the table. So I bought Civilization VI on my iPhone (my third purchase of that game). It’s the worst way to play that game, but I played it for dozens if not more than a hundred hours just because it fit exactly what I needed. If I was in a Total War phase, maybe it would have been that Rome: Total War port.

So, what is there to say? If the above scenario or a similar scenario applies to you, then yes, jump in on this. It’s the best way to play the game on your phone, but it’s the worst way to play the game. If you have an iPad I’m certain the experience would be better. But then, at that point, why not just use a laptop? See, it’s all quite hard to reconcile. This is an exceptionally good strategy game, so there’s no sense in giving it a low score. You just have to decide if you can accept the concessions made to get it onto a mobile phone. Can you?

Total War: Medieval 2 mobile review - back in the saddle (2024)


How to enter cheat codes in Medieval Total War 2 Android? ›

Cheats are entered via the in-game console, which is accessed by tapping and holding both upper corners of the screen. Give the ancillary with the specified ID to the character with the specified name. Use quotation marks for characters with spaces in their names.

Is Total War Medieval 2 mobile good? ›

Hands down one of the best of its kind. With huge replayability, you've got one of the most fun gameplays you will find anywhere coupled with the most epic and beautifully composed music in the genre. Who doesn't like a good medieval setting, anyway?

Is Medieval Total War 2 mobile multiplayer? ›

Multiplayer is not supported.

Are there cheats for Medieval Total War 2? ›

Total War: Medieval 2 cheats – ancillaries and traits

You can use the following commands to add/remove traits and ancillaries: give_ancillary [character name] [ancillary id] remove_ancillary [character name] [ancillary id] give_trait [character name] [trait id] [level]

What is the auto win cheat in Medieval 2? ›

Then, when you get the choice to either fight the battle on the map, or automatically resolve the battle, bring down the console, type auto_win attacker and hit enter. Clear away the console and click on the automatically resolve battle button and you will win every time, even when you are hopelessly outnumbered.

Is Medieval 2 better than Rome Total War? ›

Rome's wasn't horrible, but Medieval 2 definitely was superior in this facet. Troop Recruitment and Management: Medieval 2, easily. Armies function the same way, but Medieval 2 has a much better recruitment system. In Rome, once you built a higher tier unit, there was little reason to build the lower tier one.

What year does Medieval Total War 2 end? ›

The campaign is set between the years 1080 and 1530. Players assume control of a medieval state, referred to in the game as a faction, and control its government, economy, military, diplomacy, and religion on a map spanning most of Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East.

How do you play Mongols in Medieval 2 mobile? ›

For mongols, you need to turn on hotseat for the grand campaign, start off as england (ensure cheats are on), then type "control mongols" into the console. After, put in "control england" and wait for a couple hours as the turns go by. You will ultimately have a couple mongol armies sitting around.

How long to beat total war medieval 2? ›

Main Story1226h 39m
Main + Extras4124h 56m
Completionist3175h 13m
All PlayStyles1970h 48m

How do you unlock all in Medieval 2 Total War? ›

  1. Go to C:\Program Files\SEGA\Medieval II Total War\data\world\maps\campaign\imperial_campaign.
  2. Open descr_strat. txt with notepad.
  3. Copy the unlockable factions to playable. Save the file and close it. Make sure you delete the factions in the unlockable when you copy and paste it or it will not work.
Apr 20, 2014

Can you add AI to Medieval 2 multiplayer? ›

It's not multiplayer if it's A/I - it's single player. You can play SP for OLB format in Custom Battles, Quick Battles and Historical Battles. Yeah, we can do that in RTW, but for some reason, not in M2TW, as far as I know. Just create factions in customised battles as 'CPU player' - that's A/I.

How do you get married in Medieval 2? ›

Diplomats and Princesses can arrange marriages to single family members of any faction to form alliances or bring Generals over to your faction. You can't marry Islamic factions from a Christian perspective.

How do you unlock Russia in Medieval 2? ›

Russia is a faction in Medieval II: Total War. It is unlocked if the players completes the campaign as one of the starting factions.

How old are the princesses in Medieval 2 Total War? ›

The Princess is an agent type and family member in Medieval II: Total War. Princesses is only agent for players who are not recruited, but comes into service as daughters of ruling family reaches age 16.

How to open cheat menu in medieval total war 2? ›

The cheat console is summoned by pressing the ~,` button while on the campaign map. If you do not have an english keyboard, the console button is most likely the button under ESC, and left of 1. -> on scandinavian keyboards the console key is ö.

How to unlock all factions in Medieval 2 Android? ›

Additional factions are unlocked through play in two ways. You may unlock individual factions by capturing all of their settlements in a Grand Campaign. Completing the victory conditions for any faction's Grand Campaign will unlock all playable factions at once.

How to use create unit cheat in medieval 2 total war? ›

Create_unit Syntax

The name of the settlement, or the name of the character, that you wish to create the units within/for. The ID of the unit that you wish to create. Optional - if you do not specify an amount here, the amount of units created will be 1. Specify the amount of units you wish to create here.


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