"skirmish mode, AI, single-player" and other core bits on their own, some things they can't.
They're referring to "achievements, game invites and gameplay stats" which will be "powered through Steam," which is where the "majority of our players come from." Trading Cards!
The small team feel better about leaving a lot of the "secondary features" in the hands of a proven system like Steam, which happens to tie all those things together nicely.
"As an independent developer our resources are limited. For the majority of the Crusader 2 project we have had two full-time programmers and two artists working on the game… That said we still want Crusader 2 to have all the cool and convenient features players expect from a modern RTS and a true sequel to the original Stronghold Crusader."
"We can handle much of the game just fine on our own, so the game’s skirmish mode, AI, single-player campaigns and other core gameplay systems such as co-op have been tailor made by Firefly,"
"We can handle much of the game just fine on our own, so the game’s skirmish mode, AI, single-player campaigns and other core gameplay systems such as co-op have been tailor made by Firefly,"explained the developer. "However secondary features like achievements, game invites and gameplay stats will be powered through Steam, where the majority of our players come from.”
If only Games for Windows Live were still going then we could... be utterly inconvenienced and prone to save game losses. Love it, like it or hate it; Steam is the strongest PC digital platform around that provides a connected community and makes it easy for smaller developers like Firefly to offer features bigger studios and gamers take for granted.
Stronghold Crusader 2 will support at or post launch:
• Achievements • Voice Chat • Cloud Saving • Workshop Support • Game Invites • Gameplay Stats • Trading Cards
• Voice Chat
• Cloud Saving
• Workshop Support
• Game Invites
• Gameplay Stats
• Trading Cards
“The time required to create our own bespoke tools and systems for such features could end up delaying the game, which is something nobody wants… It sounds clichéd but this is win-win, we get to include the features fans of the genre expect without delaying the game or taking our focus away from core gameplay,” continued the studio.
Stronghold Crusaders 2 releases in Spring 2014 digitally and at retail with Steamworks.