Mount & Blade: Warband will be on store shelves tomorrow, but that hasn't stopped Diehard GameFAN from clocking in with a last-minute preview of the multiplayer expansion pack.
Creating characters is just like it was in the original game, with you selecting your gender and background to determine your stats. Unlike in the original, one of the things it mentions after your character is created is that it pays to be both male and of high birth to succeed in medieval society; therefore, picking a lower class or God forbid, a female is equivalent to Hard Mode because no one will take you seriously. There are no new options, and the game begins the same as it would otherwise, but it's not until you get farther into the game that you will start to see the new touches to the game.
The first major change for the single player campaign is the ability to become a king. Before, you could only become a vassal of a king and do his biding, but here, through means I haven't been able to determine yet, you can not only become a king, but enable lords to serve under you as vassals. This is a HUGE change, and adds even more depth to what was already an extremely deep game.