King's Bounty: Armored Princess (and its expansion Crossworlds) is the fantastic followup (more like v1.5 than 2.0) to the RPG King's Bounty: The Legend, with combat almost identical in mechanics to that in the beloved turn-based strategy series Heroes of Might & Magic (which was of course based on the original King's Bounty roughly two decades ago). If you are a newcomer to KB, it's advised you read through this before your first playthrough. Though you won't find spoilers here, some tips might make the journey more smooth.
KB is mostly about minimizing losses in battle. Whether you choose Warrior, Paladin, or Mage, you will very likely lose units (sometimes many) as you engage in battle with wandering armies. Fortunately, the developers have provided an almost limitless array of offensive and defensive abilities and spells to compliment your raw physical power. Armored Princess improves the skill trees, units, spells, and overall balance that was found in KB:tL. Its expansion Crossworlds adds more random factors and a handful of quests in addition to two small campaigns. While this walkthrough provides details for all quests in the game and useful tips in this intro, it will be up to you to manage your skill tree upgrades, makeup of your army, spell selection, and creature special abilities to find out your own preferred style of combat.
Though deep, the mechanics of the game fortunately couldn't be easier to pick up. Please refer back to these tips if ever you become stuck or frustrated, which I doubt will happen - and note that some of the items listed as rewards in the walkthrough are randomized when your game starts (not all just some so if you get something different, that is why):
- If you own King's Bounty: Crossworlds, start directly below on the appropriate campaign. For Orcs on the March, only the new quests are listed in that page as the remainder of the quests are identical to Armored Princess.
- Quests marked with an * on the link navbar are for the main questline. In this game, as opposed to the original KB:tL, there's one major quest and the rest are for story and experience. As there is no set order to the quests, they're laid out according to where the quest giver is. For example, if you started a new quest in Debir, just look under the Debir section for the entire (or sometimes partial) name - some quests have long names.
- There are a couple game mods that can make the game more enjoyable. One in particular I would not live without is the camera mod. These are downloadable at the official site: www.kings-bounty.com. When you enter, head into the Armored Princess forum and then to the mod forum to find it. It allows for a much higher and flexible camera angle and makes scouting and simply enjoying the scenery more accessible. Some mods include several in one file. To install, simply put the mod file in your KB AP directory > data > mods directory. For Crossworlds, the same ones will work if you put them instead in your KB Crossworlds directory > data > sessions > orcs > mods directory. You may need to create the directories.
- As a general unit, you can't go wrong with Paladins once they become available. After you get the first stone from Bolo, check back with the Magic Academy back on Debir for a small supply of them. For no loss fights, Paladins can be invaluable as all you need to do is clear the enemy, then gather your defeated troops around and use the Paladin's ability to resurrect and viola, all your troops are replenished. Doesn't work on some troops but for the most part, try to get to 50 wins without a loss ASAP, as the leadership bonuses are substantial.
- You can also find Paladins in abundant supply in between Verona and Montero on the Endless Bridge (in the Temple of Love). Verona also has a good chance of having supplies of them at various merchants if you're lucky.
- In AP, to get to another island you'll need to uncover "navigational charts" that are scattered on every island, but most often guarded by an army who doesn't move unless you get really close... most often resulting in combat. It is possible to "kite" them away from the chart, even most of the tough ones, but I'd suggest seeing what you can do with your current army before moving on. When the armies become a little overwhelming, then try for the next chart (usually resulting in more losses). When you open up a new island, be sure to be on your boat, then click the ship steering wheel icon above the bottom right compass to open your map. Then click on the island you want to go to.
- In addition to the mods, I found the official forum added a lot to the game for me with rich details about all the mechanics in the game. I'd highly recommend visiting if you like getting into how the game really works.
- The general order of difficulty in the islands are Debir, Scarlet Wind, Bolo, Rusty Anchor, Verona, Montero, Tied (Dersu and Tekron and Umkas), Tied (Uzala and Elon), Tied (Sheterra and Nameless), and finally Reha. If you ever find yourself stuck with regard to enemy difficulty, make sure you explore as much as you can, avoiding all enemies and grabbing all the leadership and treasure you can find before you fight again. Then if you're still having trouble, try and kite the map guards away by getting fairly close and clicking away in short increments until the guard is sufficiently far away from the chart, then dart in and out with the new chart. This sometimes can take many tries and has been made more difficult to do in Crossworlds (though you have access to higher level armies sooner).
- On Rusty Anchor, there is a hero shaman who guards a cave at the back of the island, but you must complete a nearby quest to deliver 50 each of three troop types to the quest giver. Once that's done, you'll get a key to the cave where you can get a free Emerald Dragon. This can help tremendously in the early game.
- In general, in AP the Warrior, not Mage is considered the easiest character to play through the game with due to his raw physical abilities and high leadership. The Mage is said to have a bit tougher time though there are many who can still beat the game with a Mage on Impossible setting with zero losses. Essentially, don't make too much out of the decision and choose what best suits your preferred style.
- Normal difficulty mode is likely plenty challenging for most people. The game is highly replayable, though long (a good thing!), and thus many people seek out higher difficulties after their first play. Hard is definitely hard, and Impossible is even more difficult, but once you figure out some key strategy or spell combinations (those that work well together) and good items, the difficulty dramatically decreases.
- Thoroughly explore each area for collectible pickups on the ground, especially leadership banners, scrolls, altars, and chests. Then replenish your army with newfound leadership.
- With the speed of your horse, it is possible to lure monsters away from loot, run in to grab it, and then run back out stronger than before, which will help minimize your losses when you fight them at your leisure.