Crusader Kings 3 was just announced only a short while ago, and already fans are questioning various things about the state the game is in and what it will be like on release. So to assuage some concerns, the development team has posted some updates on their progress with the game, as well as some justifications for changes being made.
Henrik Fåhraeus led the discussion on the topic, releasing both a video version, as well as a developer diary aimed at talking through the changes. The biggest changes are all pretty great, adding in new features and changing existing ones to improve both the feel of the gameplay and ease-of-use. There are four main pillars of design in the sequel, with each one affecting a different area of the project.
Players stories will direct the flow of information and the path the game takes, with a hyper-focus on the choices the players make. After all, what’s a good story without it being engaging. Paradox also want to focus on player freedom and take the idea to a new degree. In previous franchise entries, there has been some restriction to what kind of characters you could create and pathways gameplay could go down. By expanding both the character creation and the scripting system, Paradox will be removing those roadblocks. This also leads into the character-focused revamp being put into Crusader Kings 3, with a ton of new skills and traits forming just one element of the massively expanded character design system.
The game will also include some changes that don’t directly affect gameplay, but will no doubt have an impact on players. Paradox Interactive has said that one thing they lament is the alt-right hijacking some of the historical symbolism for their nonsense, so Paradox has already axed mentions of “Deus Vult” from the sequel. But on the less overt side, the developers are also stripping out some elements from the older games to streamline the experience. While keeping up with the historical relevance and mechanical depth, Paradox also want an approachable experience for this game, that’s the last major design pillar by the way..
This removal of features from a beloved franchise will always be met with some skepticism, so some users were quick to ask a pretty good question.
Why buy Crusader Kings 3 if it doesn’t have all of the mechanics of Crusader Kings 2?
Lead designer Henrik Fåhraeus had a pretty solid answer too, “There are likely other features and content that will be missed by some players… [but] we believe that everyone will find the core gameplay far more fun and rewarding… CK3 is a vastly bigger game than CK2 was on release.”
Crusader Kings 3 was revealed last month at PDX and will release in 2020.