Mount & Blade II: Bannerlord

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About this mod

This mod adds lore-friendly religions into the game. They are all inspired from Bannerlord's lore (in-game and cut-content) and real-life religions. This work of fiction was designed, developed, and produced by a multicultural team of various religious faiths and beliefs.

Permissions and credits
  • Russian
  • Mandarin
Before we start, let me warn you, I'm not planning to push updates to this mod. I'm actually quitting modding for Bannerlord. But I'm releasing this only because I didn't want the efforts of those people who come up with the stories to go in vain and also because of the fact mod was working fine and needed some polishing. It might also serve as a Proof-of-Concept for certain people and they can create their own with better code.

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Image: @KleiosCanvas - Depiction of the Battle of Pendraic

This mod adds 9 different and unique religions to the game. I will explain their effects in detail below. We scanned everything we can find about the game's lore which is almost nonexistent and has a lot of gaps. Although one thing is clear that they do believe in something in general. Hence this was our starting point and from there, we adjusted the religions and names with respect to lore. Some of them are heavily based on real religions that existed throughout that era and some still probably around in one way or another. But understand one thing, these are fan-fiction religions based on the real world. They are not depicting any real religion directly and we do not intend to start a religious war here. So keep it civil while playing and/or discussing. 

How does it work?
It works out of the box. You don't need to take any specific action. If you are starting a new game, consider that your culture will also decide your starting religion. Religions affect both towns and characters. Also, your interactions will have consequences. 

For Characters
Each character starts with a default religion. This religion is decided by the system based on their cultures. Their devotion will be random at the start and will increase/decrease throughout the day-night cycle. AI Characters cannot change their religion although they can be atheists if they lose enough devotion. Devotion has three levels.
  • More than 90 devotion = Fanatic
  • Between 90 and 50 = Faithful
  • Less than 50 = Believer
Player characters can change their religion but it will reset their existing devotion. Players can increase their devotion by doing religious actions. AI also checks every week to see if he/she is associated with anyone from a different religion or not. And based on some random value, this can decrease their relationship. This is also applied to AI Companions too. If you are not devoted enough, this won't cause any issue even if you are from different religions. But if you are a fanatic, it might decrease your relationship.

For Towns
Each town starts with a random amount of religious population. A summation of all the numbers approximately should give the total prosperity in the city. Hence this value is tied to prosperity. You can see these values if you hover over the religion icon on the left top ( yellow sun icon - same icon with loyalty but colored )
You can see temples in towns and these "availability" is based on the most popular religion in that town and the religion(s) of that main religion tolerates. Which religion tolerates to which can be seen in the encyclopedia or in here. You can do certain stuff in temples, which I will explain below.
Towns' loyalty can be affected by its main religion and owner clan leader's religion. This means, if Aserai takes a Northern Empire city, it's harder for them to hold it in their hands. This decreases the snowballing in my small playtest - but it can also increase the chances of rebellions as well. Although, it's not hitting town loyalty too drastically. It's still slightly subtle to break the balance. 

Actions And Functionality
- You can bring up Religion Menu by pressing R on the campaign map. It will freeze the time so that you can do your actions. Each religion will have some particular sacrifice actions that you can do to boost your army morale. Each sacrifice from that menu gives +10 morale bonus ( immediate ) and another +10 for the future ( bonus that goes away each daily ) and this also adds +15 devotion to your religion. 
- If you have more than 50 devotion to your religion, once you meet with a new lord, you can start your introduction with a religious sentence. This will give you a nice +5 bonus if the person is from the same religion and that person has +20 devotion. If you are not sharing religions but his religion tolerates you, you will get +1 relationship point. However, if the person is not from your religion and doesn't tolerate your religion, you will get -4 relationship point.
- You can do several actions in temples. Temples will appear based on the main religion and tolerated religion. Each of the actions is specific to that particular religion. Usually, there are three actions to do. Either you can donate gold to that temple, or you can sacrifice animals or offer items for blessing.
  • Donation randomly set each day - doesn't differ religion. If you donate gold, you will earn 12 party morale, 15 devotion right off the bat. If you donated to main temple, people with same belief in that town will notice that and you will gain +7 relationship with them. And anyone you have met with same religion will get news of your generous offer and you will gain +2 relationship points. 
  • Item offer will give 20 parties morale and 15 devotion. And as with the same donation, you will gain +7 relationship if you do this in main temple. You won't get extra relationship with people that you have met though.
  • Sacrifice is also similar to Item offer however it gives different bonuses. Sacrifice gives 10 party morale, 15 devotion and +10 with the local notables and people in that town.
Using this feature can come in handy if you want to recruit troops from notables. Since currently in-game it's hard to do. As well as ramping your relationship with lords and keeping morale up in your army ( since low morale indeed causes soldiers to rout quickly. )



Faction: Main Religion, Imperial, Vlandian Nobles, Sturgian Burghers
Lore: Calrism is a 1,000-year-old belief system revolving around one god, called 'The Creator’, and is named after Calros, their martyred prophet. Calric monks teach that Calros the Wise was a holy man and peacemaker in the Warring Families Period of the Lycaran Republic who was burned at the stake by enemies of peace. They teach that this murder so angered the Creator that he sent a dragon to torment the Families; after which they ceased fighting, formed the Senate and elected the first Emperor. They believe the constrained violence of the Arena is a sanctified alternative to the horrors of war and that loyalty to the Creator’s chosen Emperor - a true son of Calradia - is the only true path to peace.
Temple: Sacellum
Priest: Episcopos
Tolerated Religion: Ayuhaz

Faction: Aserai
Lore: Ahuyazists are not animistic fire-worshippers, as some Imperials wrongly believe. Their religion is, in fact, the ancient monotheistic worship of Ayuhaz the All-Father - whose rules over the world from his golden palace, the Sun. Most Aserai scholars believe that Ayuhaz and the Calric Creator god are one in the same, but that the truth of the Ayuhaz religion was corrupted and warped in Calradia by the influence of the Imperial state. Ahuyaz worship is not prescriptive and their religious law is based on largely-voluntary submission to the opinions of priest-scholars with no central hierarchy. Ahuyazists place less emphasis on ritual worship, instead focusing on the central ethics of “Good Words, Good Thoughts and Good Deeds”; they value mercy, wisdom and practical good works. While faithful Ayuhazists are permitted to take and keep slaves, they believe there is no greater act of mercy than granting freedom to slaves.
Followers can choose whether they wish to pray and how, but communal worship is usually centred around seasonal festivals. Ither opportunities for worshipers to gather include the Jaqu'l, the initiation ceremony where a child is accepted into the Ahuyaz fellowship.
Temple: Fiery Cavern
Priest: Sahab
Tolerated Religion: Calros

Faction: Sturgian Nobles, Rural Sturgian Commoners
Lore: The traditional religion of Sturgia is the worship of Ratvoz, the Many-Handed God who sends spirits into the world and safeguards the spirits of ancestors. Each of his hands is a god in their own right and they are also worshipped separately; the three greatest of these gods are Xakhun of the Sun, Simbog of the Earth and Matisty of the Waters. The knowledge of arcane rituals to correctly sacrifice to these gods and invoke their favor is known as Ratvozhd. Offerings of grain are given to each of the lesser gods, but Sturgians believe that Ratvoz himself manifests as a sacred oak tree, so he is honored with ritual purification of timber boughs. The arch-enemy of Ratvoz is Kagiv of the Void, by whom spirits will be taken unless Ratvoz is offered weapons to fight him with - these offerings traditionally take place in peat bogs.
Temple: Sacred Oak Grove
Priest: Magus
Tolerated Religions: Calros, Ca fál

Faction: Khergit
Lore: Iltangrism centers around the deity Iltangri and incorporates elements of animism, totemism and ancestor-worship. They believe Iltangri, the Golden Eagle, created the universe out of the Endless Sky and gave life to humanity with his wife Gergi, the goddess of earth and home. Subordinate to Iltangri are a number of lesser deities: including Tumai, the divine wind who breathes life into every creature, Erlik god of the underworld, and many others. Iltengrists believe prosperity and well-being of the individual and the nation depend on maintaining reverence and respect for these deities, in harmony with the universe. They also believe that the gods forged the land by hammering life into a barren mountain, which worshippers pay tribute to through the act of celebrational forging. To pay tribute to great heroes of the past who united the tribes and overcame adversity, Iltengrists also engage in ritual seclusion and fasting in the wild.
Temple: Yurt
Priest: Gokhri
Tolerated Religions: All

Ca fál
: Battania
Lore: Ca fál is an age-old religion with two main gods - Mother Cràiurach of the earth and Father Tarbnaofach of the lake, who rule as Queen and King over a multitude of minor gods in the Otherworld but often meddle in the affairs of mortals. One can please Tarbnaofa by sacrificing hogs to fuel his insatiable virility which fertilizes the fields; but Cràiurach may only be appeased with human sacrifice, which she considers just repayment for giving life to all beings. Lesser spirits such as fairies and elves may grant good fortune in exchange for offerings of cheese at fairy rings. Most Ca fál religious symbols are represented in the form of wood carvings, rings and bracelets. Being an age-old decentralized religion, Ca fál has split into several different variations and, as such, practitioners are generally tolerant of other polytheistic faiths.
Temple: Standing stone Circle
Priest: Druid
Tolerated Religions: Ratvozdh, Iltangri
Faction: Nords/Sea Raiders
Lore: The people of Jumne, also known as the Nordlands, hold the raven in high regard, believing it to possess a hidden wisdom which it will impart to humans if they simply feed it a battlefield full of flesh, and partake in the drinking of strong spirits afterwards. Those who claim to have witnessed the raven’s revelations then go on to practice future-telling.
Sub Religion: Player can’t be part of this religion / No temple

Faction: Beni Zilal
Lore: Once devout adherents of the Ahuyaz religion, the Beni Zilal split off after a failed attempt to establish a unified high priesthood over all Ayuhazists that provoked widespread rebellion. They insist that the mainstream Ahuyazists have corrupted religious law and falsified the sacred texts. The Zilal preach that true salvation under Ayuhaz can only be achieved through knowledge of holy secrets that they alone hold. Their rites are shrouded in mystery.
Sub Religion: Player can’t be part of this religion / No temple

Faction: Jawwal
Lore: Jawwal believes in spirits they call Jinn, which Imperial citizens garble as “genies”. Both good and evil Jinn inhabit many aspects of nature. The evil ones must be warded off with accurate knowledge of magical binding rituals, which the sorcerers of the Na’as have dedicated their lives to studying.
Sub Religion: Player can’t be part of this religion / No temple
Faction: Embers of the Flame
Lore: The Emperor Darusos, who ruled Calradia in the late 900s, was a devout Calrist who won the love of the people through many official acts of charity and attempts to enact popular reforms to the Empire, but antagonized powerful members of the Senate in doing so. Darusos was driven from the palace by assassination attempts and, in response, raised a army of peasants he called the Holy Flame. Darusos’ army was promptly slaughtered, but the remnants became the Embers of the Flame: a cult who believe that Darusos was the physical incarnation of the Creator sent to bring salvation to a fallen world. Technically Calrists, Embers preach that there are actually two gods - the Creator and the Destroyer - and that the Senate corrupted the message of Calros by creating the Empire in service of the Destroyer. The claims that there is an evil god equal in stature to the Creator and that the Calradian Empire is in service of it is an unthinkable heresy to most Calrists, so Embers are ruthlessly persecuted by the Church.
Sub Religion: Player can’t be part of this religion / No temple

Other Ideas
I was planning more complex dialogues and more complex consequences. However, because of the reason that I stated at the start, I won't do this. But I'm adding these since they are possible to achieve for other modders if they want. 
- Effects of Battle Results over Devotion Morale Effect ( i.e. losing war against another religion will generate negative religious effect etc )
- Temple building/destroying by the player and AI
- Religion-based traditions for armies 
- Heretic Executions and it's effects 
- Religion-based perks & effects 
- Religion-based units
- Declaring faction religion and enforcing that and expelling clans based on that - both for AI and Player
- More actions in both temple and normal religion menus. 

Special Thanks
Special thanks to bonerstorm and five bucks for providing the backstories for each religion, by scanning all the lore and XML files. 
Thanks to Piconi for discussing some details with me

Things To Consider
- You should be able to plug and play this anytime. It won't corrupt your save game since it's not adding anything. 
- If a mod is changing the Settlement view, you won't see religion icon. But overall functionality should  be working 
- Might or might not work with mods that are adding new settlements and/or cultures. Calradia Expanded is one of them. Let other people know in posts if it's working fine. But even if it works, it won't be as good as you think since this mod is obviously created only for Native gameplay.