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The Settlers II

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This article is about the 1996 video game. For the 2006 remake, see The Settlers II 10th Anniversary.
The Settlers II: Veni, Vidi, Vici
Settlers 2 cover.jpg
Developer(s) Blue Byte Software
Publisher(s) Blue Byte Software
Producer(s) Thomas Hertzler
Designer(s) Thomas Häuser
Programmer(s)
  • Thomas Häuser
  • Peter Ohlmann
Writer(s) Wolfgang Walk
Composer(s) Haiko Ruttmann
Series The Settlers
Platform(s) MS-DOS
Release date(s) August 31, 1996 (1996-08-31)[1]
Gold Edition
February 4, 1997 (1997-02-04)[2]
Genre(s) Real-time strategy
Mode(s) Single-player, multiplayer

The Settlers II: Veni, Vidi, Vici (German: Die Siedler II: Veni, Vidi, Vici) is a 1996 real-time strategy video game developed and published by Blue Byte Software for MS-DOS. It is the second game in The Settlers series, and a sequel to The Settlers. Shortly after its release, Blue Byte released an expansion pack, The Settlers II Mission CD, containing additional maps, a new single-player campaign and a level editor. In 1997, they released The Settlers II: Gold Edition, containing the original game, plus the Mission CD expansion. In 2006, a remake, The Settlers II 10th Anniversary, was released for Windows and Nintendo DS. In 2009, the Gold Edition was released on GOG.com.[3]

The game can be played in either single-player campaign mode or in "Free game" mode; individual scenarios with predetermined rules set by the player, which can be played with either another player, with the computer, or with both another player and the computer. In the single-player campaign, the player controls a group of Romans who are shipwrecked. Led by their captain, Octavius, they must use a series of magical portals to try to find their way back to the Empire. During their travels, they come into conflict with Nubians, Vikings and Japanese. In the single-player campaign included with the Mission CD, the player controls Octavius' great-grandson as he attempts to conquer the entire world.

The game received generally positive reviews, with critics praising the complex economic system, the graphics and the sound effects. Common criticisms included a lack of control during combat, and a sense of repetitiveness after playing for a while.

Gameplay

The Settlers II is a real-time strategy game in which the primary goal in each level is to construct a settlement with a functioning economy and produce military units so as to conquer rival territories, ultimately gaining control of either the entire map, or a certain predetermined section of it. To achieve this end, the player must engage in economic micromanagement, construct buildings, and generate enough resources to build up their army to the point where they can attack and defeat their opponent or opponents.[4] The game is controlled via a point and click interface, and features a HUD navigated primarily through "windows" modeled on Windows 95.[5]

The game can be played in one of two modes; "Campaign" or "Free Game". In Campaign mode, the player must complete ten missions of increasing difficulty, the goal of each of which is to defeat the computer controlled opponents, and gain possession of the territory in which the mission objective is found. In Campaign mode, the player can only control the Romans, with the ten missions forming a linear narrative. However, once each mission has been unlocked, the player is free to return and play that mission again whenever they wish.[6]

In "Free Game" mode, the player can choose from eighteen different maps, and refine the type of game to be played in various ways. For example, the player can select how many races will compete in the game (a minimum of two, a maximum of four), which race they will control (Romans, Nubians, Vikings or Japanese), and which commander they will use. A second player can also control one of the other races, with the main player selecting from three different types of alliance ("Every man for himself", "Human vs. Computer" and "People vs. People"). This allows for a variety of different game types, including, but not limited to, two human controlled races against one computer controlled race (and vice versa), two human controlled races against two computer controlled races, two human and two computer controlled races all fighting one another, one human and two computer controlled races fighting one another, and two human controlled races competing against one another. The player must also select the objective of the game, choosing between "Total domination" and "Conquer ¾ of the map". Other conditions the player must set include "Merchandise in the HQ" (dictates how many resources are in the players' warehouses at the start of the game), "Exploration" (if set to "off", each player can see only their section of the map; if set to "on", the player (or players) can see all of the map, including enemy territory) and "Start position" (determines if each race begins the game in a predetermined spot, or is instead placed randomly).[6] Games involving two human players are played in split screen, with the second player using a mouse on the same PC.[6]

Settlement

Whether playing in Campaign or Free Game mode, every game begins the same way; the player has one building, a warehouse, in which are a set amount of raw materials and tools.[7] To expand their settlement, the player must gather and process additional raw materials such as granite, lumber, iron ore, gold and coal, as well as produce food such as bread and meat.[8] The basic gameplay revolves around serfs (the titular "settlers") who transport materials, tools and produce, populate the various buildings, and perform the requisite task of each particular building.[9] At no point in the game does the player directly control any individual settler - instead, the player issues general orders to the settlers as a group (such as ordering the construction of a building), with the AI handling the delegation of orders to specific settlers.[9]

Screenshot of Settlers II, showing the "Activity window", which allows players to construct buildings. The HUD also shows part of the player's settlement, with the various buildings linked by roads. The roads are demarcated by waypoints (blue flags), which function as hubs for transporting goods.

A vital element in the game is the layout of the road network so as to allow for an efficient transportation system. Any settlers transporting goods must use roads; the only settlers not bound by roads are soldiers during battle and workers situated in buildings whose jobs take them outside (woodcutters and stonemasons, for example).[10] To build a road, the player must place a flag in the ground (a flag is automatically placed when the player selects to construct a building). The player must then click on the "build road" option, and select another flag. The computer will automatically find the shortest route between the two flags and build the road, although the player is also free to manually build the road in any manner they wish.[10] To maximize distribution via the road network, the player must set as many flags on each road as possible. Flags can be set on existing roads at a certain distance apart from one another, and serve as transport hubs; a settler will carry an item to a flag and set it down, at which point the next settler on the road will pick up the item and continue, freeing the first settler to return and pick up another item at the previous flag. As such, the more flags the player has, the more settlers will operate on a given road. This cuts down the distance each settler must travel between flags, and hence reduces the time it takes them to transport one item and return for the next, thus avoiding items building up at each flag, which leads to congestion and slows down the distribution network.[11] When more than one item is left at a flag, the game has a priority system, which determines which item the settler will transport first. This system is adjustable, allowing the player to dictate the order in which items are transported.[12]

Just as important as a good road network to efficient distribution is the geographical placement of buildings. This can manifest itself relatively straightforwardly. For example, sawmills should be placed near to woodcutters, but placing an iron smelter far away from the metalworks or armory will increase transport time.[13] However, deciding how to organise buildings can be more complicated. For example, miners need food, so the player should build either a bakery or a slaughterhouse near the mining area. However, a bakery needs flour and water, so it should be placed near a mill and a well, whilst a slaughterhouse needs pigs, so it should be placed near a pig farm. Furthermore, a mill needs grain, so it should be placed near a farm, and a pig farm needs both grain and water, meaning it needs to be placed near a farm and a well. Placing all of these buildings close beside one another may not be possible, meaning the player must make informed decisions about what building to place where and how best to connect those buildings via roads.[11]

Players also have the ability to build harbors and shipyards.[9] Shipyards can build boats, which can transport goods over small stretches of water, and ships, which can transport people and goods across oceans. Once a fully loaded ship has reached its new destination, the player can drop anchor, and a new harbor will be built. This harbour will then be considered connected to the main settlement as if there were a road leading to it, with the ship transporting whatever materials are required for the new settlement, and returning anything produced back to the main settlement.[14]

Economy

The economy of the settlement is under the player's control throughout the game.[8] For example, the player can control the distribution of goods, determining what resource is transported where first, under six headings; foodstuff, grain, iron, coal, boards and water. Under the foodstuff heading, the player can select which mining operation gets the majority of food. Under the grain heading, the player can adjust the priority between the mill, the pig farm, the donkey breeder and the brewery. Under the iron heading, the player can adjust the priority between the armory and the metalworks. Under the coal heading, the player can adjust the priority between the iron smelter, the armory and the mint. Under the boards heading, the player can adjust the priority between construction, the shipyard and the metalworks. Under the water heading, the player can adjust the priority between the pig farm, the donkey breeder, the bakery and the brewery. The game has a default setting for all six headings, but the player is free to manipulate each one as they see fit.[15]

In a similar manner, the player can select the priority with which tools are built; by increasing the significance of a particular tool, that tool will be produced before others.[16] Tool production is important in the game's economy insofar as all buildings require certain raw materials and a worker with the right tool. The player can access an inventory which lists the total amount of every item currently in the stockpile, allowing the player to check if the necessary tool for a particular building is available.[17] For example, if the player has built a bakery, and it is fully stocked with raw materials, but is not occupied, the inventory may show there are no rolling pins available for a settler to become a baker. As such, the player will need to prioritise the production of rolling pins so as to have the building occupied as quickly as possible.[18]

Military

At the start of each level, the player has access to limited territory, which can only be expanded by creating one of four military complexes (barracks, guardhouse, watchtower and fortress) near the territory border.[4] Each complex must have at least one soldier garrisoned for the player's territory to expand.[4] The different buildings hold varying numbers of soldiers; barracks can hold two, guardhouses three, watchtowers six, and fortresses nine. The player can also build a lookout tower, which can see for great distances, but does not grant new territory.[19] Soldiers are automatically created from the pool of existing settlers, with each soldier requiring a sword, shield, and one unit of beer. Once soldiers are stationed in a building, gold coins can be transported to the building to increase their rank.[19]

In order for the player to attack an enemy building, they must click on that building, select the number of units they wish to carry out the attack, select whether to use high or low ranked units, and then click the "attack" button.[20] If the player sends in low ranked units and they capture an enemy building, they increase in rank, without the need for a gold coin.[20] If the player's units defeat all soldiers stationed in the enemy building, they will occupy it, with the player's territory increasing according to the building's radius.[20] The player can also build catapults, which attack enemy military buildings. Catapults are immobile, but as long as stones are supplied, they will fire automatically at enemy buildings within their range. Each successful hit kills one occupying soldier, and if all soldiers are killed, the building burns down, and the enemy loses the territory controlled by that building.[21] Defense of the player's military buildings is automatic; as enemies attack, the player's soldiers emerge and engage in combat with the enemy, with victory determined by both the numbers on each side, and the rank which each soldier has reached.[22]

The player has control over the structure of their military in much the same manner as they do over distribution and manufacture of tools; the player is free to change the amount of settlers who become soldiers, the rank of first-line defence soldiers, how many soldiers from each hut are available for the player to attack with and how many remain behind, how many soldiers counter the enemy if the player is attacked, and how many soldiers take up positions in military buildings in the centre of the settlement, further out in the settlement and on the borders of the settlement.[23]

Plot

The game begins with Octavius, a captain in the Roman navy, aboard his ship, the Tortius. It is the fourth year of the reign of Emperor Travianus Augustus Caesar, and the Tortius is sailing through the dangerous "Sea of Storms" to the "Latonic Provinces".[24] However, the ship is hit by a sudden storm and thrown off-course. After several days being tossed around the ocean, the waves drive the ship into the rocky coastline of an island. The Tortius is destroyed, and the crew are marooned. From the position of the stars, Octavius recognises the island is not one known to the Romans, and as such, rescue is unlikely.[25] Seeing a plentiful supply of food, the crew decide to settle on the island.[26]

After establishing a base, they set out to explore, and soon discover a structure shaped like a gateway, with a Latin inscription, "Consiste ut procederas," meaning "Settle down in order to make progress." Perplexed at the seemingly contradictory nature of this message, Octavius and his crew continue to build up their settlement.[27] Thirteen months after being shipwrecked, a portal opens in the gateway. Octavius concludes the inscription means that for the portal to open, they must first construct a functioning settlement.[28]

They enter the portal and are transported to another island. Several months later, they find evidence of Nubians nearby.[29] The Nubians greet the Romans peacefully, telling them about their "holy relic", which Octavius realises is another portal. He asks for access to it, but the Nubians refuse, and Octavius determines to take it by force.[30] After five months of fighting, the Romans defeat the Nubians, and open the portal.[31] They are transported to a new island where they meet a lone Roman who tells them it is inhabited by a dangerous Nubian tribe.[32] After several months, they encounter the tribe, who are unfriendly, but not openly aggressive.[33] They learn that once again, the Nubians worship the portal as a relic, and once again refuse to allow them access.[34] Again, the Romans fight their way to the gate, travelling to another island.

Now four years into their journey, on the new island they meet a lone Viking of whom they are initially suspicious, but, nevertheless, they welcome him into their group.[35] He reveals his name is Erik, and he is the only survivor from a group that lived on an island not far east from the present location, who were conquered by a "hostile tribe."[36] After fighting and defeating two Nubian tribes, they open another portal, which leads to a barren underground cavern filled with lava.[37] In the caverns they encounter two Japanese tribes in alliance with one another.[38][39] Again, the Romans go to war to reach the portal, which transports them to another new island.

They quickly learn this island is occupied by Vikings, who are openly hostile and attack the Romans immediately. Using intelligence extracted from prisoners of war, the Romans are able to locate the portal.[40][41] After several months of conflict, coming towards the end of the sixth year since their shipwreck, they are able to access the portal and transport. However, landing on a peninsula, they find themselves caught between two more hostile Viking tribes.[42] Fighting their way to the portal, they transport, and emerge near an erupting volcano, which is poisoning the air in the vicinity.[43] They fight their way through two hostile Japanese tribes, and emerge on what they believe to be the final island of their journey.[44]

Ten years after being shipwrecked, they find the final portal, but are shocked to find it guarded by hostile Romans, who refuse to allow them to use it.[45] However, they are able to fight their way through, finally returning to the Empire.[46]

Development

Blue Byte Software always intended to make a sequel if the first game proved successful.[47] When it was a commercial success, selling over 215,000 units,[48] they immediately began work on a second game,[47] with a total of twelve people working on the project.[49] As well as exploiting new technology to improve the graphics, sound effects and basic gameplay, there were certain aspects of the original with which Blue Byte had been unhappy, and which they addressed in the sequel.[47] The team also sought feedback from fans of the first game, and worked to address anything they disliked or felt could be improved upon.[49]

It was this desire to improve on the original which led to Thomas Häuser becoming project manager. When the first game was in development, Häuser was newly employed by Blue Byte, and did quality assurance work on it. As part of his work, he made a list of aspects which he felt could be improved, and brought them to the developers, who told him there was no time to implement his changes, as the game was almost ready for release. However, they were impressed with his ideas, and, as such, suggested he apply them to a new game, a sequel to the original. This ultimately led to Häuser, who was a programmer by trade, working as the lead designer on the sequel.[50]

Elements of the first game which were improved in The Settlers II include more on-screen movement and more animations for the settlers themselves. There are also four visually different races, and a more strategic battle system, which allows players to send out scouts and utilise a stationary weapon in the catapult. Additionally, there is a story-driven single-player campaign, replacing the narratively-unconnected missions from the first game, which simply got harder as the player progressed, with no plot developing.[47] Initially, the team took the concept of having a storyline too far, designing levels which placed tight limits on what the player could and couldn't do. However, they quickly realized this went against the principles of the first game, and changed the level design accordingly. According to Häuser, "in the beginning, we had conceived of the game differently. It was much more story-driven, but we scaled that back. Everyone plays differently - if you begin by building two sawmills instead of a stonemason, the game is already completely different. Therefore, there can't be rigidly fixed paths and, for example, a certain event happening after twenty minutes."[49]

Despite the efforts to make The Settlers II as good as they possibly could, however, speaking in 2006, Häuser comments that, as with the original game, there were elements with which he was unhappy; "Things like the help system. There was none, to be honest. The player had to work really hard to get into the game, and there's lots of details in the game you have to learn the hard way. It would have been a great help to a new gamer if we had some put in."[50] He also agreed with many fans of the game that the shipping system didn't work very well, even after it was patched in the Gold Edition; "it didn't work as we wanted it to work. I remember the ships did not transport the things you wanted to other islands, we couldn't solve this problem at the time. Because at this time, the development systems were much more difficult to use and we didn't have the ability to debug code as we do today. It was just not working as we wanted it to work."[50]

Mission CD

The Settlers II Mission CD expansion pack, released shortly after the main game went on sale, contains nine new single-player campaign missions in which the player again controls the Romans, this time under the command of Octavius' great-grandchild, as he attempts to conquer the entire world. It also features twelve new maps for Free Game mode, now renamed "Limitless Play", and a level editor to allow players to build their own custom maps, which can then be used in Limitless Play.[51]

Gold Edition

Released in 1997, The Settlers II: Gold Edition features the original game and all of the content from the Mission CD expansion pack. However, in the Gold Edition, the single-player campaign from the original release has been dubbed "Roman Campaign", and the Mission CD single-player campaign has been dubbed "World Campaign". The Gold Edition also features some minor graphical enhancements, support for higher resolutions and minor gameplay improvements.[52]

Reception

Reception
Aggregate score
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 84%[53]
Review scores
Publication Score
GameSpot 7.3/10[54]
Coming Soon Magazine 86%[55]
PC Player 4/5 stars[48]

The Settlers II received generally positive reviews, with an aggregate score of 84% on GameRankings.[53]

GameSpot's Trent Ward scored the original release 7.3 out of 10, arguing "despite very pleasing economic models and visual delivery, there really isn't enough to do to make long-term world-building very satisfying." He was also critical of the combat system. However, he praised the economic system, citing the complex relationship between the different buildings necessary for the economy to run smoothly. He concluded, "For those who are into strategy games that require linear thinking and specific problem solving, the game probably will provide multiple hours of engrossing play. But those who are looking for a more open-ended game may find that Settlers II's low number of construction options and snore-inducing combat keep the game well within the bounds of strategy game mediocrity."[54] Stephen Poole, also of GameSpot, scored the Gold Edition 6.6 out of 10. He too praised the economic system, citing "the complex balancing act" required for things to run smoothly. However, like Ward, he was critical of the combat system, and concluded "This game is definitely not for everyone, but for those who think they're up to the challenge of lording over a sprawling empire, the Gold Edition is an excellent deal."[52]

Coming Soon Magazine's Glenn Soucy scored it 86%, calling it "infinitely complex and variable." He also praised the graphics ("this is one of the more visually captivating games that I've seen in a long time") and the sound effects. He concluded "For those who've enjoyed playing God from time to time, The Settlers II is well worth the price to own [...] The makers of this game have created a simple but never simplistic world where every action has a reaction. Blue Byte has woven a rich tapestry of elements together into something truly amazing."[55]

Jörg Langer of Germany's PC Player scored it 4 out of 5. He praised the graphical improvements over the original game, citing the varied animations of the settlers, such as inactive settlers reading a newspaper, or the ability to zoom in on a building and see the settler inside performing his task. He also praised the complexity of the economic system, and the necessity for planning ahead. He was also impressed with the story-driven single player campaign. Although he was critical of the "indirect control" over combat and felt that "diplomacy has not been implemented in the slightest," he concluded "Settlers 2 is just as suitable for the patient casual player as for strategy experts - there is no more constructive, more relaxing strategy game. A feast for fans of the city-building genre." In a mini-review, Henrik Fisch, also of PC Player, also scored it 4 out of 5. He was somewhat critical of the transport system, especially the tendency for items to get congested at flags, however, he concluded "if you give yourself the necessary acclimatization time, Settlers 2 is a great game."[48]

Remake

In 2006, a remake, The Settlers II 10th Anniversary, was released for Windows and Nintendo DS.[56][57] Thomas Häuser, lead designer of the original Settlers II chose to remake that particular game as it seemed to be the favourite of fans of the Settlers series.[50] The biggest decision regarding the remake was to renovate the game rather than reinvent it;

The very big issue is that if you talk to people about Settlers 2, a lot of people have a lot of ideas how to improve it. This leads to a very big problem. You can add a lot of features to the game, but it instantly defocuses what the game is all about. For example, if you allow direct control of the military or give more detailed control about what is transported from where or asking an individual woodcutter to chop down a tree because it's in the way because you want to build a farm, it completely changes the game. We decided not to change any of these game mechanics at all. It wasn't easy to tell people that.[50]

References

  1. ^ "The Settlers II". GameSpot. Retrieved May 21, 2016. 
  2. ^ "The Settlers 2 (PC)". GameSpy. Retrieved May 21, 2016. 
  3. ^ "New release: The Settlers 2: Gold Edition". Facebook. August 20, 2009. Retrieved June 1, 2016. 
  4. ^ a b c Dreher, Michael (1996). "Military". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 12. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  5. ^ Dreher, Michael (1996). "Windows". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 14. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  6. ^ a b c Dreher, Michael (1996). "Main Menu". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 7. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  7. ^ Dreher, Michael (1996). "Starting the game". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 8. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  8. ^ a b Dreher, Michael (1996). "Economy". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 10. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  9. ^ a b c Dreher, Michael (1996). "Who are the Settlers?". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 9. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  10. ^ a b Dreher, Michael (1996). "How do I build a road?". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 10. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  11. ^ a b Dreher, Michael (1996). "Set out as many flags as possible". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 11. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  12. ^ Dreher, Michael (1996). "The "Transport" window". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 20. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  13. ^ Dreher, Michael (1996). "What do I have to watch out for when building roads and houses?". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 11. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  14. ^ Dreher, Michael (1996). "Ships". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 37. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  15. ^ Dreher, Michael (1996). "Distribution of Goods". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 20. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  16. ^ Dreher, Michael (1996). "The "Tools" window". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 20. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  17. ^ Dreher, Michael (1996). "The "Inventory" window". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 15. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  18. ^ Dreher, Michael (1996). "Windows". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 16. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  19. ^ a b Dreher, Michael (1996). "How do I best prepare myself for an attack?". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 12. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  20. ^ a b c Dreher, Michael (1996). "And how do I start my offensive?". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 13. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  21. ^ Dreher, Michael (1996). "What do I need a catapult for?". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 12. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  22. ^ Dreher, Michael (1996). "And if I do get attacked?". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 13. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  23. ^ Dreher, Michael (1996). "The "Military" window". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 22. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  24. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Octavius: Boardlog of Octavius, captain of the Tortius. The morning entry for the 12th day in the month of Mars in the fourth year of the god-like Emperor Travianus Augustus Caesar. The Tortius is on course, driven by a wind from the southwest. Tomorrow we will have crossed the treacherous Sea of Storms. If all goes well, we will have reached the Latonic Provinces in four days. 
  25. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Octavius: The morning entry for the 18th day in the month of Mars. The storm pounced upon us like a predator in the night, and I had to throw out the drag anchor. For four terrible nights the wind drove us deep into the darkness. The lookout was the first to notice the danger, when a lightning bolt illuminated the fatally close rocks. The Tortius no longer exists. What remains of my trusty ship is now driftwood on the sandy coastal beach of this unknown island. The stars tell me that we are nowhere near the familiar Trading Rocks. We cannot hope to be found soon, but let the gods be thanked we are still alive, and the island appears to be fruitful. We still do not know if we are the only people here. 
  26. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: Off we go. Octavius: Diary of Octavius, Fourth Day after Shipwreck. Yesterday all the survivors met in order to discuss the situation. Because there is no prospect of an early rescue, we decided to settle on this foreign island. 
  27. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: Off we go. Octavius: Our scouts have discovered a strange object. It looks like a gateway. We are obviously not the first humans on this island. They have even found an inscription on the gateway in Latin. It is bizarre and contradictory, perhaps it is a riddle: "Consiste ut procederas!" - "Settle down in order to make progress." What can this mean? 
  28. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: Off we go. Octavius: Diary of Octavius, Second Day of the Thirteenth Month after coming ashore. The second year began yesterday and we seem to have succeeded in settling this island. The scouts report strange goings on near the gateway. It appears that a path has opened up that can lead us from this island. This seems to be the meaning of the riddle: we must settle in order to move on. 
  29. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: Initial contact. Octavius: Diary of Octavius, 26th Day of the Third Month of the Second Year. My fears have been given further confirmation. My men found a rag doll and two spear tips of the type customarily associated with the Nubian tribes. These artifacts do not appear very old. 
  30. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: Initial contact. Octavius: Diary of Octavius, Fourth Day of the Fourth Month of the Second Year. It was only to be expected: we came across the Nubians. At first everything was friendly. They even told us about their relic and it quickly became obvious that it was one of the gateways. They denied us access to their holy relic, we shall have to fight to obtain access. 
  31. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: Initial contact. Octavius: Diary of Octavius, 27th Day of the Ninth Month. We were victorious in battle and the island is ours. The gateway has become active again. I am excited by the prospect of where our journey will take us now. 
  32. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: The pass. Octavius: Diary of Octavius, 17th Day of the Third Month of the 3rd Year. We came across another castaway. He warned us against hostile Nubian tribes in the east of the island. 
  33. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: The pass. Octavius: Diary of Octavius, 23rd Day of the 12th Month of the 3rd Year. We came into contact with the Nubians. Their behavior is very threatening but not openly aggressive. Their behavior will probably change before long. 
  34. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: The pass. Octavius: Diary of Octavius, First Day of the Second Month of the 4th Year. The tribe in the north is blocking our path to another gateway. They also regard it as their holy relic. We have no alternative but to fight. 
  35. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: On the high seas. Octavius: Diary of Octavius, 9th Day of the Ninth Month of the Fourth Year. Yesterday we met a stranger of truly frightening appearance. He is huge in size, has light blue eyes and glowing golden hair. Long ago in a Roman harbor tavern I once heard stories of such people who live in the far north. How did he get here? He is suspicious and refuses to talk to us. We shall treat him as our guest for a few days (the poor fellow appears to be starving). Perhaps then he will change his attitude. 
  36. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: On the high seas. Octavius: Diary of Octavius, 16th Day of the Ninth Month of the Fourth Year. Well, what wonders a little generosity can achieve. The blond giant told us that he is a member of a race that calls itself the "Vikings". He says that they lived on a large island not far to the east but they were conquered by a hostile tribe. His name is Erik. 
  37. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: In the wasteland. Octavius: We are surrounded by nothing but barren wilderness. The edges of this world seem to be either impenetrable mountains or lava flows. It is impossible to keep track of time here. A dim, perpetual twilight hangs over everything and there is neither sunlight nor starlight. 
  38. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: In the wasteland. Octavius: We have met humans of much stranger appearance than our Viking shipwright. They call themselves "Sons of Nippon". They are short and thin but obviously skilled and tenacious. Their strangest feature is their skin color. It is yellow ochre and their eyes are just small slits. 
  39. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: In the wasteland. Octavius: The "Sons of Nippon" in the south have relatives in the north. Their relationship with each other appears very friendly. War with one race means war with the other. 
  40. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: Divided country. Octavius: The Vikings have a settlement behind the large mountain range on the east of our island. From the peaks of the mountains, one can see another very large land mass in the northeast. We have not yet found any trace of a gateway and the prisoners of war claim they know of no such thing, but they are poor liars. 
  41. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: Divided country. Octavius: We have captured the small area of land beyond the mountain chain from the Vikings. We took further prisoners who told us where the gateway is. As we already suspected, it is in the far northeast. Apart from a small area in the south of the land mass, it is entirely in the hands of the Vikings. 
  42. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: The snake. Octavius: Diary of Octavius, The Fourth Day of the 11th Month of the Sixth Year. It appears that our peninsula is linked to the rest of the continent only by two narrow valleys. Tracks suggest there is a barbarian race of Vikings in the south. A captured Viking told us that another extremely wealthy tribe lives on the peninsula to the west of us. They have large stocks of Gold. Access to their region to the west of the large bay is heavily fortified. More precise details could not be obtained. 
  43. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: The Grey Island. Octavius: Once again we find ourselves in a world that consists of ash and lava. The atmosphere carries the putrid smell of sulphur. It all originates from the nearby volcano which bellows out its vile contents across the land. My men are insisting we leave soon; I can only hope that the gods will guide our steps. 
  44. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: The Last Gate. Octavius: The air is filled with anticipation and even a little reluctance, as we prepare to embark on the final and most dangerous chapter of our long journey home. Will we ever see Rome again? We must summon all our strength because this island seems to be our best chance. 
  45. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: The Last Gate. Octavius: Diary of Octavius, The 17th Day of the Sixth Month of the 10th Year. Romans are actually standing in front of the tenth gateway. They are not at all friendly. Perhaps they are the other side of the coin, the enemy brother Remus. Maybe their gateway is the one that will take us back to our beloved Rome. As the old legend says: "For the sake of Rome, brother shall fight against brother." For almost ten years we have been constantly dreaming of our homeland. We shall not give up now. 
  46. ^ Blue Byte Software. The Settlers II. Blue Byte Software. Level/area: The Last Gate. Octavius: Diary of Octavius, Last Day of the 10th Year. Last entry of Octavius in this Diary. We have succeeded. Tomorrow we shall return to Rome exactly ten years after becoming castaways on this island. Ten years during which we traveled in the footsteps of our forefathers. Ten years during which we learned what made Rome so great. We shall offer a great feast of thanks to the gods and will see our families and friends again. I can hardly wait. 
  47. ^ a b c d Dreher, Michael (1996). "Introduction". The Settlers II Instruction Manual. Blue Byte Software. p. 3. Retrieved May 24, 2016. 
  48. ^ a b c Langer, Jörg (June 1996). "Die Siedler 2". PC Player (in German) (6): 54–57. Retrieved June 1, 2016. 
  49. ^ a b c Langer, Jörg (June 1996). "Interview Mit Einem Siedler". PC Player (in German) (6): 58–59. Retrieved June 1, 2016. 
  50. ^ a b c d e Gillen, Kieron (October 12, 2007). "Making Of: Settlers II: Veni, Vidi, Vici". Rock, Paper, Shotgun. Retrieved May 31, 2016. 
  51. ^ "Settlers II - Mission CD". Amazon.co.uk. Retrieved June 1, 2016. 
  52. ^ a b Poole, Stephen (May 23, 1997). "The Settlers II: Gold Edition Review". GameSpot. Retrieved May 31, 2016. 
  53. ^ a b "The Settlers II". GameRankings. Retrieved May 31, 2016. 
  54. ^ a b Ward, Trent (September 6, 1996). "The Settlers II Review". GameSpot. Retrieved May 31, 2016. 
  55. ^ a b Soucy, Glenn. "The Settlers II Review". Coming Soon Magazine. Retrieved June 1, 2016. 
  56. ^ "The Settlers II: 10th Anniversary Edition (PC)". GameSpy. Retrieved June 2, 2016. 
  57. ^ "The Settlers (DS)". IGN. Retrieved June 2, 2016.