HISTORY TIME! If there are two figures that stand out as the most condottiero-ish of the condottieri, the first is Francesco I Sforza, the captain who leveraged his mercenary band to install himself as the Duke of Milan in 1447. The dude made it into Machiavelli’s The Prince as an example of bad employment decisions, which seems like pretty high praise to me. The second is Giovanni dalle Bande Nere, the great-grandson of Francesco, who became the last of the great condottieri when a cannon killed him in 1526, proving just how obsolete armored condottiero knights had become.
History, man. It’s cool stuff.
Anyway, Condottiere is about all of that: romantic and duplicitous mercenary captains doing what they do, conquering Italian city-states and strutting around like it’s nobody’s business but the Pope. And bluffing all the while, desperately hoping their rivals never figure out exactly how vulnerable they are.