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Reveilled
Apr 19, 2007

Take up your rifles


The New DLC, Horse Lords, has been announced!





Crusader Kings 2 is a grand strategy game set in Europe, North Africa, and Asia from 769 to 1453. You take the role of a noble dynasty and lead them plagues, war, and intrigue to power and fortune. It's developed by Paradox Interactive and was the first of their grand strategy games to break the "expansions required to be fun" cycle, having had what nowadays seems to be the remarkable distinction of actually being a good game at release.



If you enjoy burning heretics, crushing the peasantry, and murdering your children, CK2 is the game for you!



Almost every ruler in the game is playable, from Count Loser of Nowhereville to the Holy Roman Emperor. At release (and therefore, without DLC) only Christian Nobles were playable as they were the only ones with actual game mechanics, other groups acting mostly as AI filler, but the ability to play as other groups (Pagans, Muslims, Republics) has been added through DLC as the features to make them interesting were developed. There are a number of start dates bookmarked at various significant events in medieval history but you can start from literally any day between 1066 and 1453 that you want, with two additional start dates, 769 and 867 being available through DLC. Once you have your character and your start date, you are dropped into the game and are now up against hundreds of other dynasties that all want what you want: power. You will need to manage scheming vassals, foreign invasions, religion, marriages, and the inevitable disappointing glutton your heir will be. There is no way to “win” CK2. The only goals that exist are the ones the player makes for themselves. You can choose to reform the Roman Empire and reunite Christendom or just putter away in Iceland. Whatever you want to do in medieval Europe, you can do.



This is what battles look like in CK2:



It usually comes down to whoever has more soldiers and the only real effect you can have on a battle is picking which people lead it. War is not the point of the CK2, its the result of diplomacy and intrigue. Unlike games like Civilization, where the greatest threat is from other players, the greatest threat in CK2 is frequently from internal forces tearing your realm apart through title claims and plots and rebellion. You can absolutely declare war on people and its one of the fastest and easiest ways to expand your land, but its significantly more satisfying to assassinate your brother before he pops out a kid so all of his lands fall to you.



You can kill your wife when the Pope refuses to grant you a divorce. You can murder your firstborn son because he's awful while his brother is amazing. You can forge vast empires. You can convince dukes to rebel against their liege and then conquer them while they're rebelling. You can win tournaments, throw feasts, imprison that jerk who was plotting to kill you, get conquered by Mongols, get conquered by Aztecs, you can throw babies into sinkholes, you can have sex with and impregnate your own daughter because this game gets a little hosed up some times. There are hundreds of special events that play off your character stats and traits to produce some incredibly awesome and/or hilarious stories.





Have sitcom-style comical misunderstandings with your psychotic parents!



Rulers can get nicknames. They get a little dumb sometimes.



Sleep with your sister.




You can die from having sex in this game.



From escalator dropdown's LP of the Game of Thrones mod. Break canon.



From the CK2+ mod. Get laughed at.



This will not last.



Yes, but its buggy and kind of weird and not really the focus. Some goons set games up on occasion.




This mod wasn't completed unfortunately.

The latest patch is 2.3.4. You can get it off Steam automatically obviously and if you bought retail I don't know how you still exist. I don't know, I'm just copying the last OP's banners (including this very sentence) and he felt it important to copy in this section from the OP previous to his, who in turn felt it important to talk about the latest patch for some reason.

Its worth noting that, unlike a lot of previous Paradox games, CK2 is stable and quite fun right out of the box. You don't need any mods to make the game functional. But, if you been playing it for a while and want to mix things up, these are some of your best options. Most of these are available via the Steam Workshop, or by registering an account on The Paradox Interactive Forums and registering your game to get access to the Mod forums.

Base Game Overhauls

-CK2+ was originally developed by our very own Wiz (who now works for Paradox) and is still commonly used around here. After the Old Gods, it was taken over by a new team, and has expanded significantly from a few small but significant systems bolted on to the main vanilla experience into the typical "shitton of changes of widely varying quality" megamod that each Paradox game gets eventually. Here's the devs pitch:

quote:

As the name implies, CK2+ exists to give you more—more content, more choices, more fun. The goal is to offer a deeper and more challenging CK2 experience without straying too far from the original game mechanics or adding overly deterministic events. The purpose of this mod is not historical accuracy (although we try to preserve it whenever it’s not detrimental to gameplay), but rather to enrich the medieval sandbox that CK2 offers.

In short, there's a billion new things, most of the stuff that made CK2+ the great mod it was pre-Old Gods is still in there, but subsequent changes are not to everyone's taste. But if you've played previous Paradox games and liked megamods like Victoria's Pop Demand Mod or Europa Universallis 3's Magna Mundi, that's basically what you're getting now.

-Historical Immersion Project is the other big porject, being not a single mod in itself but a collaborative effort between a few modders to keep their mods cross-compatible with one another and available as a single modpack if desired. It consists of: Vanilla Immersion, Events, and Traits (VIET), a large event package to make the game livelier; Project Balance, which has similar goals to the original CK2+ mod of making small but significant changes to the game to improve it, such as reworking technology spread and reducing the speed at which the major inter-faith conflicts (Iberia, Byzantium, Jerusalem) get resolved in the game; Somewhat More Historical (SWMH), a modified map for the game; New Borders, Rivers, and Terrain+ (NBRT+), ARKOpack, and Cultures and Portraits Revamped (CPR), which together overhaul pretty much everything graphical in the game; and Extended Mechanics and Flavour (EMF), only available through the HIP modpack, which appears to exist mostly to keep the usual "modder decides to put massive dilapidated oblivion gates in their unrelated mod about removing zone transitions" poo poo to a minimum by requiring that stuff goes into EMF and gets clearance from the other HIP modders.

Alternative Scenarios - Old World

There are two major alternative scenarios covering the same area as the base game available, both ridiculous in their own way:

-Lux Invicta is an alternative history scenario which covers the same time period as CK2, but works from the premise that a monotheistic solar religion outcompeted Christianity to become the state religion of the Roman Empire. Consequently no religion ever entirely gained the authority and power to forcibly convert everyone else, creating a world in which every possible religion, and every syncretic fusion of those religions still exists. Open up Lux Invicta and look at the religion map and you get positively assaulted by an incoherent mess of faiths. It is designed around small realms, with cultural and religious conversion being difficult, therefore making expansion a challenge as you inevitably end up ruling large areas where your faith is not popular and your language not spoken. The religions are themselves ridiculously complex, with every single one being unique in its combination of traits.

-When the World Stopped Making Sense is a mod covering the migrational period as the Western Roman Empire collapsed and new kingdoms rose in its place. It is still in its early stages, but it is playable and has most of the features you'd expect of a map mod with some additional provinces and new realms to play as. As for being ridiculous, of particular note is the realm of the Garamantes, a tribal oasis-dwelling confederation in the northern Sahara whom the modmakers are entirely too enamoured with and have seen fit to grant a province for every single oasis in the Sahara and more troops than the entire Eastern Roman Empire.

Alternative Scenarios - Other Places, Fiction

-Game of Thrones. If you've heard of any CK2 mod before getting the game, you've heard of this It adds tons of new events, traits, and options to fit with the GoT universe. The latest bookmarked start date, A Feast For Crows, has some spoilers so maybe you could just read a goddamn book but completely avoidable and the rest of the scenarios are quite fun.

-Elder Kings is an overhaul for the game much like Game of Thrones is, but as the name suggests, this time the setting is Tamriel, the world of the Elder Scrolls games. Be a lusty argonian maid, or the real Barenziah, cast spells, steal souls, become immortal!

-After the End is a goon-made project creating a post-post-apocalyptic feudal nightmare that takes place right in your back yard, North American thread reader! It is still a work in progress as more provinces and realms are added with virtually every release, but overall it's amazing fun and richly detailed.

DEV-MADE PAID MODS

There's a lot of DLC for the game. Much of the DLC has added or tweaked already existing systems, but anything that affects the entire game is automatically patched in for free (with a few small exceptions). You need the DLCs to play as certain characters and unlock some features, but nothing here is required and you can pick and choose what interests you. CK2 is regularly on sale, and most of the DLC goes on at 75% off at the same time, so wait for a sale if you can, you won't wait long. These are the major DLCs:

-The Sword of Islam lets you play as Muslim characters. Muslims have a much heavier focus on religion and piety and must manage a special decadence statistic that can destabilize their realm if left unchecked.

-The Legacy of Rome focuses on the Byzantine Empire, giving new traits and options for members of the Eastern Roman Empire. This DLC also adds retinues, special military units that function slightly different from regular military. You must buy this DLC to get access to retinues.

-The Republic lets you play as merchant republics like Venice. Republics are focused on making money through trade posts built across the coasts of Europe and scheming against other merchant families.

-Sunset Invasion is an alt-history DLC where the Aztecs invade Europe. Its somewhat tongue-in-cheek and serves as a Mongol Invasion for the west (i.e. hundreds of thousands of angry Aztecs land in Spain and wreck everyone's day).

-The Old Gods reworks the many pagan faiths of medieval Europe. It also lets you move the start date back to 867 and play as the Vikings.

-Sons of Abraham adds mechanics and events for the abrahamic religions, chiefly Catholicism and its college of Cardinals mechanic, but it also enables Jews as playable characters. If you're having trouble finding them, that's Khazaria in southern Russia and Beta Isreal in Ethiopia and they're both only available on some start dates.

-Rajas of India lets you play as characters of indian faiths, and was accompanied by a free map expansion to cover the subcontinent. Indian faiths are more tolerant of one another, and rulers in India get indian-flavoured versions of the events, hunting tigers instead of deer and the like.

-Charlemagne turns the clock back to 769 and lets you play as none other than Big Chuck himself. Grapple with a massive and dangerous Abbasid empire, spend a few centuries dragging some backwater tribe into modernity, or play as the political leader of Western Christendom and be treated to an event-driven story campaign. Be aware that the start date in question is very prone to the development of massive unassailable empires, as the Franks, Ummayads, Abbasids and Byzantines between them cover most of the map not under the sway of petty tribes, so you have a different sort of world than you do in other start dates which may or may not be fun for you.

-Way of Life introduced the focus system which allows you to dedicate your life to study, good governance, parties, or loving everything that moves. Characters who focus on a goal get additional bonuses and events related to that goal. Overall the game is more vibrant with Way of Life installed.

-Horse Lords is the next DLC to be announced and is slated for release soon. It will expand the map into Central asia, add clan and nomad mechanics into the game and finally make the Mongol Invasions work a bit more like they did historically. It will also add complaints in this thread about map expansions making the game run slower, as well as posts from the devs assuring us that the game will run faster and pointing out that current slowdown in the game is due to an issue unrelated to the last map expansion and will be fixed in the next patch. This feature of the DLC is being added for free!

There are also a lot of cosmetic packs that add different unit graphics, music, and portraits. Generally people agree that these are worth the money at 75% off when on sale (if for no other reason than that mods tend to use them), people differ in opinion as to the actual quality of the packs and whether they are worth full price. Some people say the unit graphics slow down the game. That might be true but people say lots of things.



Try the Tutorial LPs, a thread full of instructional LPs on how to handle various aspects of the game. Some of the mechanics of the game have changed in the last few espansions, however, so not everything in the thread is fully up to date.

Kersch did an excellent LP. Its a bit outdated now, but will still get you up to speed on the basics.

Thanqol also did a LP. While not instructive, it gives you an idea of the crazy-hilarious stories this game can produce.

To better understand how inheritance and succession works, read this big-rear end wall of text: Click.

Reveilled fucked around with this message at Jun 6, 2015 around 18:02

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Reveilled
Apr 19, 2007

Take up your rifles


Reserved, I guess, cause that's what people do when they post threads. Maybe I'll put something here some day

(I won't)

Knuc U Kinte
Aug 17, 2004



First post.

Larry Parrish
Jul 9, 2012


I don;t understand the point of making new threads. Well, peace.

Pimpmust
Oct 1, 2008



There's a big rear end Warhammer overhaul mod too, although so far I've only managed to get my rear end handed to me.

ninjahedgehog
Feb 17, 2011

It's time to kick the tires and light the fires, Big Bird.


Aw man, I was sort of hoping that the old thread would be closed at 1,066 pages.

Good OP though. Horse Lords is going to own.

ThaumPenguin
Oct 9, 2013



Should we add something about interesting starts or newbie-friendly start locations and stuff like that?

I think new players could benefit from knowing what would be a good start location and such, so they don't end up in Ireland in 867, or in southern England anno 1066 or literally anywhere near the Seljuks.

Groogy
Jun 12, 2014

Tanks are kinda wasted on invading the USSR

Aw I was too late to the name suggestion party. My suggestion would have been:

Crusader Kings II: Beware of the Kira-Kithan, they are without honor!

The Moon Monster
Dec 30, 2005
THIS CUSTOM TITLE WILL COME IN HANDY WHILE LURKING


Larry Parrish posted:

I don;t understand the point of making new threads. Well, peace.

I saw a new thread and thought "an expansion must be coming out, maybe I should pick it the game up again" so it works as a PSA for CKII fans who don't really follow the game.

evilmiera
Dec 14, 2009

Status:Perpetually fearful

I can never go back to CK2. Not because it is bad but because I can never just be happy doing a quick scenario or idea, I have to go full world conquest all the time. And now they've expanded the map again I'd feel even worse about failing.

Torrannor
Apr 27, 2013

---FAGNER---
TEAM-MATE


evilmiera posted:

I can never go back to CK2. Not because it is bad but because I can never just be happy doing a quick scenario or idea, I have to go full world conquest all the time. And now they've expanded the map again I'd feel even worse about failing.

The newest Mongol DLC will probably make it very tempting to do world conquest, so it's fine.

Walton Simons
May 16, 2010


ThaumPenguin posted:

Should we add something about interesting starts or newbie-friendly start locations and stuff like that?

I think new players could benefit from knowing what would be a good start location and such, so they don't end up in Ireland in 867, or in southern England anno 1066 or literally anywhere near the Seljuks.

I don't have The Old Gods, what's so bad about Ireland in 867? Vikings?

ThaumPenguin
Oct 9, 2013



Walton Simons posted:

I don't have The Old Gods, what's so bad about Ireland in 867? Vikings?

Yeah, you get swarmed with vikings who'll pillage your village, steal your gold, and run off with your wife and daughters. There are also Norsemen in Dublin and in the Hebrides who are all too eager to expand.

The same is true for the Charlemagne start, though the vikings won't show up right away.

ThaumPenguin fucked around with this message at Jun 6, 2015 around 12:27

BravestOfTheLamps
Oct 12, 2012
Probation
Can't post for 6 days!


Charlemagne is not listed among the DLC. Is OP insinuating something?

grate deceiver
Jul 10, 2009


Can't wait to horse some lords

Reveilled
Apr 19, 2007

Take up your rifles


BravestOfTheLamps posted:

Charlemagne is not listed among the DLC. Is OP insinuating something?

Oops

I'll fix it later, phoneposting

Bloodly
Nov 3, 2008

Not as strong as you'd expect.

Groogy posted:

Aw I was too late to the name suggestion party. My suggestion would have been:

Crusader Kings II: Beware of the Kira-Kithan, they are without honor!

Kara-Khitai. I remember my AOE2 strongly.

Fizzil
Aug 24, 2005

There are five fucks at the edge of a cliff...



I liked the gameplay of the huns in Total War: Atilla so introducing a similar mechanic in Crusader Kings but with more role playing elements included will be sweet as hell.

Facebook Aunt
Oct 4, 2008



Ham Wrangler

Reveilled posted:

-Sunset Invasion is an alt-history DLC where the Aztecs invade Europe. Its somewhat tongue-in-cheek and serves as a Mongol Invasion for the west (i.e. hundreds of thousands of angry Aztecs land in Spain and wreck everyone's day).

I'm pretty sure that the most important thing about Sunset Invasion is that it made people lose their god damned minds. Where's that quote about never being able to trust again or whatever?

YouTuber
Jul 31, 2004


Why make a new thread with an op that is entirely out of date? Nothing on there is current at all.

Average Bear
Apr 4, 2010


NEW loving THREAD!!

MMM Whatchya Say
Aug 10, 2011

This doesn't taste like anything you've licked before


YouTuber posted:

Why make a new thread with an op that is entirely out of date? Nothing on there is current at all.

They mention horse lords

E: looks like mods are better explained too.

MMM Whatchya Say fucked around with this message at Jun 6, 2015 around 15:51

Torrannor
Apr 27, 2013

---FAGNER---
TEAM-MATE


ThaumPenguin posted:

Should we add something about interesting starts or newbie-friendly start locations and stuff like that?

I think new players could benefit from knowing what would be a good start location and such, so they don't end up in Ireland in 867, or in southern England anno 1066 or literally anywhere near the Seljuks.

The Crusader Kings 2 tutorial LP is great in that regard, and should definitely be added to the OP.

http://forums.somethingawful.com/sh...hreadid=3559664

Reveilled
Apr 19, 2007

Take up your rifles


YouTuber posted:

Why make a new thread with an op that is entirely out of date? Nothing on there is current at all.

What specifically do you mean?

Torrannor posted:

The Crusader Kings 2 tutorial LP is great in that regard, and should definitely be added to the OP.

http://forums.somethingawful.com/sh...hreadid=3559664

Good point, added. In terms of beginner starts, I'm not really sure what's easy any more, now that the go-to suggestion of "just start in Ireland" doesn't hold true any more.

ThaumPenguin
Oct 9, 2013



Reveilled posted:

What specifically do you mean?


Good point, added. In terms of beginner starts, I'm not really sure what's easy any more, now that the go-to suggestion of "just start in Ireland" doesn't hold true any more.

"just start in Ireland" works as long as you add "in 1066".

Personally I'd say the good Irish starts are:

1. Munster/Mumu (of course), as the player starts off strong and can quickly get introduced to the concept of "de-jure" right out of the gate.

2. Dublin for introducing the player to inheritance.

3. Connacht for being a slightly more challenging version of Munster which also introduces the player to how useful good councillors can be, via the genius Michael Ryan, which Connacht always starts off with:

ThaumPenguin fucked around with this message at Jun 6, 2015 around 19:06

Facebook Aunt
Oct 4, 2008



Ham Wrangler

Reveilled posted:

Good point, added. In terms of beginner starts, I'm not really sure what's easy any more, now that the go-to suggestion of "just start in Ireland" doesn't hold true any more.

If you want a basic catholic start to learn the foundations of the game, 1066 Leon is pretty good. You have claims on Castile and Galicia. Muslims to the south for easy casus belli. A long term goal of forming the empire of hispania. No chance of the mongols reaching you and messing things up while you are trying to learn the game.

Top Hats Monthly
Jun 22, 2011


People are people so why should it be, that you and I should get along so awfully blink blink recall STOP IT YOU POSH LITTLE SHIT


Thank god for the new thread

Saith
Oct 10, 2010

Asahina...
Regular Penguins look just the same!


Top Hats Monthly posted:

Thank god for the new thread

Gain 5.00 piety
5% chance Thread gains Wroth

Groogy
Jun 12, 2014

Tanks are kinda wasted on invading the USSR

Top Hats Monthly posted:

Thank god for the new thread

Wrong Deity.
You shall suffer the Wrath of Zun! INTO THE PIT WITH HIM!

SERPUS
Mar 20, 2004


Crusader Kings 2: Duggaring through History

Deific Presence
May 7, 2007


ThaumPenguin posted:

"just start in Ireland" works as long as you add "in 1066".

Personally I'd say the good Irish starts are:

1. Munster/Mumu (of course), as the player starts off strong and can quickly get introduced to the concept of "de-jure" right out of the gate.

2. Dublin for introducing the player to inheritance.

3. Connacht for being a slightly more challenging version of Munster which also introduces the player to how useful good councillors can be, via the genius Michael Ryan, which Connacht always starts off with:



This is good information. I wish there was a list of starting characters by what awesome traits they start with.

Chelb
Oct 24, 2010

I'm gonna show SA-kun my shitposting!


What do people think about Monotheism Rising? I just started it and apparently Chalcedonians have enough land to immediately mend its schism by event.

Chelb fucked around with this message at Jun 6, 2015 around 21:04

Deific Presence
May 7, 2007


Rollofthedice posted:

What do people think about Monotheism Rising?

It has potential but as it stands it makes Byzantium extremely overpowered, starts at 769 with the Schism mended, and I didn't really explore any further than that because it was so ridiculous from the get-go.

Chelb
Oct 24, 2010

I'm gonna show SA-kun my shitposting!


In that case, are there any other, more sane mods that just add detail/variety to the vanilla (and optionally pagan) religions?

Mr.Morgenstern
Sep 14, 2012



There's Heretic Pride, which adds stuff to the various heresies. Haven't tried it out yet.

TTBF
Sep 14, 2005

Staying healthy due to sheer coincidence.

Larry Parrish posted:

I don;t understand the point of making new threads. Well, peace.

After a while people forget entirely about updating the OP so it's a good way to make things stay up to date for new people trying to get into a game. There are other threads I definitely wished had made a new thread when major DLCs, sequels, or remakes came out.

Torrannor
Apr 27, 2013

---FAGNER---
TEAM-MATE


The last thread was made when The Old Gods came out. We had Sons of Abraham, Rajas of India, Charlemagne and Way of Life after that. It was time for a new thread with up to date OP.

Beamed
Nov 26, 2010

FAAAATHEEER
THE SLEEEEEEPER HAS *snooze*


Larry Parrish posted:

I don;t understand the point of making new threads. Well, peace.

K, don't worry about coming back.

Eric the Mauve
May 8, 2012

Making you happy for a buck since 199X


Copying this quote from the old thread:

Spakstik posted:

I'd kill for something that automated guardianship to some degree, like an option to have the computer automatically find guardians for anyone whose relation to you is kinsman. Merchant republics would benefit a lot from it too; my case is probably an edge case, but the entire point of republics is to make your dynasty as large as possible so you can build more trade posts and have a larger pool of potential heirs to choose from.

I'm usually most concerned with making sure the heirs to my vassals are educated by someone Content, wherever possible. Keeping up with them and periodically checking who's educating them is the main thing I use my character bookmarks list for.

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Communist Walrus
Aug 31, 2001


Eric the Mauve posted:

Copying this quote from the old thread:


I'm usually most concerned with making sure the heirs to my vassals are educated by someone Content, wherever possible. Keeping up with them and periodically checking who's educating them is the main thing I use my character bookmarks list for.

In this case I'm only concerned about the people in my court. I have ~700 people in my court and they won't stop generating kids in some fashion; again, this is in reference to the system where the immediate families of dead exarchs and people who leave other courts end up in with me (I assume because they're all of my dynasty, but it may also have something to do with me technically being the heir to the exarchs' titles since it's imperial administration). The men often come pre-married or the widow has several young children in tow and marrying her off still leaves the kids in my court. Coupled with guardians dying, it's to the point where I get a notification about a child needing a guardian maybe every 10-15 game days.

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