Manor Lords Players Can’t Get Families To Stop Being Homeless

As its name suggests, Manor Lords is a city builder about managing a medieval village. You help it grow, fight off bandits, and eventually take part in larger military campaigns. But none of it amounts to a hill of beans if you can’t get families to move in and help your society grow, and some players seem to be struggling on that front. “I have houses, the homeless people won’t take them,” one player wrote in the Discord. “Approval is NOT the issue here. I was at 90% before the homeless people arrived.”

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The most-wishlisted game on Steam ahead of its Early Access launch today, Manor Lords has exploded to over 150,000 concurrent players without even including all of those playing through Game Pass PC. That pushed it ahead of Helldivers 2 in terms of total current players and made it the top seller on Steam in front of Counter-Strike 2. All good news for the developers at Slavic Magic and their publisher, Hooded Horse, and all of it apparently contributing to a record number of unhoused peasants.

Villagers refuse to get in the house.

Screenshot: Slavic Magic / Hooded Horse

Players start off with just a few groups of villagers, some basic resources, and a single ox. At first they work in camps to harvest resources and make lumber. Eventually they are supposed to move from the camps into homes players have built with them, leading to a virtuous cycle of industrious workers, expanding villages, and satisfied populaces. Except that some players can’t seem to get their serfs to oblige. It sounds frustrating, but also hilarious.

“So I’ve build my first couple of houses but families don’t move in,” wrote one player on Steam. “Instead, I still get the homeless warnings…” Some are wondering if it’s a bug. “I ALWAYS have 5 people who are constantly homeless, despite me having more than enough burgage plots I can’t do anything about it,” wrote a player on the Manor Lords subreddit. “I swear to god I encountered some bug, my 5 original families do not move into the built burgage’s, but any new family that comes to town has moved in, so now I have 4 families moved in and 5 homeless, even though I HAVE enough burgage and half is empty,” a third wrote on Discord.

Screenshot shows players talking about homelessness on Discord and Reddit

Screenshot: Reddit / Discord / Kotaku

So what’s going on here? Are there gremlins in the Manor Lords Early Access code, or do players just need a few days to figure out the nuances of the realism-driven management sim? “We’ve seen the same reports,” Hooded Horse spokesperson Joe Robinson told Kotaku in an email. “While on the surface they can appear to be the same top-level issue, there are a few things that could be going on. Some are by design, but others are connected to known bugs that are already being addressed.”

One current cause of homelessness is a known bug that prevents burnt-down homes from being rebuilt. Another more devilish glitch is that upgrading the starting family camps will cause them to never move to nearby burgage plots until you demolish the camps. Finally, even if you solve the homelessness issue, the corresponding negative modifier can keep hanging around for a bit. “We’re investigating a possible bug where the malus outstays its welcome, so we’re not sure on that one,” Robinson said.

This is just the first day of Manor Lords’ Early Access journey as player feedback helps Slavic Magic deliver on the ambitious promise of its medieval strategy game. I’m sure players will discover even weirder bugs and idiosyncrasies as they try to unravel what makes Manor Lords tick and I can’t wait to find out what they are.


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