Prepping For Knights of Honor II: Sovereign

To celebrate the coming of Knights of Honor II: Sovereign, we’ve decided to dust off some memories and play KoH again to sharpen our swords for the countless battles to come.

By RON, Posted 30 Jun 2021

Knights of Honor II: Sovereign will be released this year, and the game is undoubtedly one of the most anticipated titles for grand strategy fanatics. Personally speaking, I have been a big fan of Knights of Honor and being playing it since its first release in 2004. If I squeeze down my list of most favorite games of all time, Knights of Honor would still be number one in it. KoH might not be equipped with tons of tools that most strategy games have, but in terms of gameplay, KoH surpasses every limit. Recently launched Crusader King III has been quoted that somewhat details down what Knights of Honor could use in terms of gameplay tools, but the framework of both game's play is almost the same. You play with a small country and make your way to become the ultimate leader of Europe.

Anyway, to celebrate the coming of Knights of Honor II: Sovereign I've decided to dust off some memories and play the game again to sharpen my sword for the countless battles to come under Sovereign. While doing it, I thought of doing a detailed playthrough for grand strategy enthusiasts who aren’t vastly familiar with this game. This article isn't just any article about Knights of Honor, but at the same time, provides valuable tips and guides the newcomers who wish to learn this game. This includes some old-timers too, who had been struggling to enjoy the major aspect of the game other than skirmishes and quick network battles.

Knights of Honor II: Sovereign, KoH 2, Black Sea Games, Grand Strategy, Gameplay, Streaming, Tips

I mostly play KoH with Tuscany since this state is located in the middle of Europe, and easy to influence the play in both land and sea. But for this playthrough, I decided to play with Palatinat; a feudal state located in the center of Europe’s most influential countries back in 1360 A.D like France, Germany, Austria, etc. Palatinat is the only second state besides France where the templars are trained. Templars are a well-armored infantry unit. Even though they are the most expensive unit but they are very effective in battling continuous wars with a low casualty rate. If you’re familiar with the Kingdom Advantages of Knights of Honor game, then you should look for a country where you can find resources in nearby provinces (some considered to be captured later during the play), and achieving all the Kingdom Advantages will grant you a quick victory. But I’d rather enjoy a more complex scenario where the victory comes after much diplomacy, warfare, and espionage. So, let’s get along with the play in the hardest mode available –

The state of Palatinat starts with only a young King (King Daniel) and two provinces Franconia and Pfalz. Usually, it’s not easy to start with two provinces especially when you’re surrounded by large countries that are battling for expanding their borders. At the very initial stage, however, I always try to set up a decent trade relationship with a state who has higher trade potential and use my King as the Marchant. Then immediately concentrate on building structures such as the Inn that costs 300 golds for bringing workers into the provinces. By the time the Inn is constructed, you can start constructing the Training Ground or Swordsmith for somewhat low-ranked ground local military units. The game hires a Knight by default for your state when the game starts, and he remains loyal to the court until death, or you sack him. But if your King has two sons, I’d suggest sacking the Knight because each hired court member costs 10 golds per month. At the beginning of the game, each gold is significant and needed for the construction or military units. Anyway, as soon as the initial setup completes, the first thing to do is get your King (was the case for this gameplay) or your sons and daughters to find wives and husbands. Marriage ceremonies will momentarily increase the happiness of provinces. But most importantly you get states to aid you with the gold, military, or even provide higher trade potential. Remember that marriages can also become a curse later on if the state where your King or his children are married asks you to declare war with a nearby state. Development of the provinces gets very slow if you get involved in warfare at the very early stage of the game. Therefore, I always recommend finding states in distance areas and whose political activities won’t affect yours. Sometimes states won’t accept marriage proposals due to your low Kingdom Power (which needs to be bought with gold and piety) but in most cases, they simply agree when you gift them some gold. I’ll leave you to watch the below video and see if you have the patience to understand the best way to get a solid start.


Now that you have the essential buildings constructed, trade routes are secured, and most importantly, have the most trained military units with two to three Knights, you should decide the plot basing on the provinces you want to capture and the states you wish to have as vassals. I try to capture nearby provinces immediately when they go under rebel’s control or a single province state whose disappearance won’t politically affect. During the time of plotting, several other things to be taken into consideration such as the states that are much likely to declare war with you. You can sign a pact of non-aggression with some states, and some won’t sign if you offer. But remember, everything can be bought with enough gold. The problem is at this stage of the game you won’t have that much amount of gold to spare. Your provinces will require a huge amount of investment for constructing different types of buildings, and their upgrades are expensive too. Anyway, if you plot to expand your borders, don’t sign trade agreements with states close to your borders. Because canceling trade agreements with states who are in good relation with you will cost Kingdom Power and also when declaring war against them. And at this early mid-stage of the game, every unwanted expense will delay your progress.

You should also hire court members such as Spy, Builder, Marchant, etc based on your activities. I avoid espionage with hired spies to avoid getting being spied on by other states. If you’re at war with others, one or two of your hired count members will likely turn out to be a spy. A hired spy who’s spying on you can kill your King or the prince next in line. The worst is a hired Knight who is spying on you and can turn your army into rebelling against you. Imagine being in a war, and all your knights have turned into rebels. It’s simply disastrous! You’ll notice in the gameplay that I hire several count members of the same type at a time and keep only one. Usually, I don’t keep the first one that shows up, or sometimes I just stick to the good-looking ones. Anyway, watch the video below and see how I plotted the expansion plan and arranged my military accordingly.


It gets busy when you start to expand your borders. You have to simultaneously take part in battles, reinforce your Knights, conduct development and adopt or convert the population of the captured provinces using Cleric. During the war, you can either lead the battles by yourself by switching to the skirmish mode or let the game AI do the fights for you. I stick to letting the AI do the battles since it’s time-consuming doing so many battles by yourself. Only the very special siege or one-two battle when you don’t have many activities going can be played in this mode. Your Knights will earn points from each battle and when the point bar is full, you can assign a special skill to them. Each Knight can have six skills max. So based on their units and your way to warfare, assign the skills accordingly. Troops under each Knight also get experience points. So, try not to lose experienced troops battling against two enemy Knights in a single fight. To avoid losing troops, I try to bring in two Knights against the opposition Knight whether they are single or supported by another Knight. Sometimes I prefer losing a battle or two or let the enemy plunder my village for the cost of winning the war. This mostly happens when you have only one or two Knights, and the attacking state sends three or more Knights to invade yours. I try to bring them down by attaching each unit or two with both my Knights at a time. Because when opposition Knights start plundering your village, they don’t retreat to join other battles to aid their fellow Knights. Something you can do, but AI opposition doesn’t. So why not take advantage of the situation? The video below will show how efficiently you can conduct warfare without losing any single unit, even against a large number of oppositions.


Now that the initial warfare is complete, the trickiest part arrives. During the battle, your Knights will capture enemy Knights and sometimes Kings and Princes too. You can either ask for a ransom or release them. Releasing them will make that state like you vastly, and in return, you can simply offer them a peace treaty by demanding them to be a vassal of your state. Vassals pay a monthly fee, and in the long run, this amount plays a vital role in your economy. The more vassal states you bring under your control, the larger your gold income gets. Diplomacy becomes much easier when the golds start to pour in like that, and you can plot for a more ambitious move.

At this stage of the game, among the few things to fear is your King not having an heir. Alternatively, you can have your armies rebelled against you, or your King having an heir is assassinated by a Spy, and the spy becomes the new King. When a Spy becomes the King, he hands over your state to his King, leaving you to send back to the main menu. However, during my gameplay, my King died without an heir, and the AI picked a Knight who seemed the most reliable candidate from the Royal Court. The problem is that when the game picks a Knight, you need to spend time to train a new Knight and improve their skills and his troop's rank. I try to utilize such a situation by training two Knights if I have room at the Royal Court. The fastest way to improve their skills is by invading/plundering enemy villages and eventually capture a new enemy province. Sometimes it becomes difficult to find a state to attack because your vassals might be allied or having a good relationship with them. So, a war against them might make your vassal unhappy, and they might end up claiming independence. Vassals who claim independence will directly go to war against you, and you also lose Kingdom Power. When your state is at much developed at this state, Kingdom Power gets costlier too. Watch the below video and see how I’ve managed to overcome this situation.


If you’ve watched the video, you can see that the game took a diverse turn, and I had to take different strategies for the victory. My plot became thinner, and I had to capture as many provinces as possible and break the powerful states was the only visible choice. Now that there’s plenty of gold to spare, you can easily finance other states who are at war against your competitors. At the same time maintaining a good relationship with the vassals by financing them will eventually take you to towards the win. Another way could the what I’ve mentioned at the beginning, Kingdom Advantages. When you’ve plenty of provinces under control, you inevitably have all the Kingdom Advantages sooner or later. 

There are few more chapters to watch. I’ll simply link them down here for your convenience. Part VI [New Strategy]Part VII [Extending Borders], and Part VIII [Patience Time].

Enjoy the final part of the gameplay, and let me know your feedback in the comment. I’m sorry for rushing towards the win for a bit since the situation with Papacy got a bit complicated, and I made a mistake signing a peace treaty with them instead of converting them to a vassal. It would take me another few hours to go to war against them along with all the Christianity following states. So, to shorten the load on this article, I decided to achieve the Kingdom Advantages.


If you have questions or ideas to share, feel free to. One thing for sure that you are going to hear a lot more from me when the Knights of Honor II: Sovereign is released. Until then, farewell!

Also posted this article at GamesCreed.

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General Information

Platform(s): PC
Publisher(s): THQ Nordic
Developer(s): Black Sea Games
Genres: Real-Time Strategy
Themes: Medieval, Simulation, War, Diplomacy
Release Date: 2022-12-06

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