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RPGWatch Forums » Games » General Non-RPG » Europa Universalis IV

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July 12th, 2013, 22:54
Anyone else anticipating to this great looking strategy game, which releases 13 Aug? Looks like they've greatly improved the UI and possibly tutorials too, which should make it more popular. I'm a big fan of their last title Crusader Kings 2. I reckon I could easily make the argument that these games have enough RPG elements to make the Watch news too!
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July 13th, 2013, 01:33
Originally Posted by Roq View Post
Anyone else anticipating to this great looking strategy game, which releases 13 Aug? Looks like they've greatly improved the UI and possibly tutorials too, which should make it more popular. I'm a big fan of their last title Crusader Kings 2. I reckon I could easily make the argument that these games have enough RPG elements to make the Watch news too!
There has been plenty of news from both series. Is anyone else interested in the news? If so I will post it then.

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Last edited by Couchpotato; July 13th, 2013 at 02:37.
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July 13th, 2013, 02:54
I personally think that EU and Crusader Kings would qualify for coverage - they both have "hardcore" (I hate that term sometimes ) PC gaming roots, and the gameplay mechanics are very much aligned with "role-playing." In some ways, an argument could be made that the "role-playing elements" in these two series are stronger than many games that are classified as RPGs.

Debates on classification aside, I wouldn't mind seeing PC strategy games of this nature covered on this site because they generally follow the interests of most RPG and PC gamers.
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July 13th, 2013, 04:43
What role playing elements does EUIV have? It is a grand historical strategy game - I've sunk a good 200-300 hours into EU3 and I can't think of a single element that qualify it as an cRPG.

Favourite RPGs of all time: Wizardry 6, Ultima 7/7.2, Fallout2, Planescape Torment, Baldurs Gate 2+TOB, Jagged Alliance 2, Ravenloft: The stone prophet, Gothic 2, Realms of Arkania:Blade of destiny (not the HD version!!) and Secret of the Silver Blades.
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July 13th, 2013, 05:47
Originally Posted by Couchpotato View Post
Well it's labeled as a strategy/RPG in the developers own words. The RPG part comes from running your country and ruling family. Just like in Crusader Kings 2 but on a different scale.
CK2 has cRPG elements I will give them that but calling EU a cRPG is certainly pushing it. Basically every game in existence is a cRPG i guess At least their own website doesn't call it a cRPG: http://www.paradoxplaza.com/games/europa-universalis-iv

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July 13th, 2013, 05:51
Originally Posted by bjon045 View Post
CK2 has cRPG elements I will give them that but calling EU a cRPG is certainly pushing it. Basically every game in existence is a cRPG i guess At least their own website doesn't call it a cRPG: http://www.paradoxplaza.com/games/europa-universalis-iv
Well not all of us use a chart or outline on what an RPG is either. Frankly I don't feel like getting into this discussion again. Go look at the other one hundred topics for that.

I also see you don't know but they are incorporating some the family aspects of CK2 also. This game is different from the last one. Go ahead and look it up.

I'll be waiting right here. I also deleted my other post as this one says what I wanted to say better.

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Last edited by Couchpotato; July 13th, 2013 at 07:13.
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July 13th, 2013, 06:47
Originally Posted by Couchpotato View Post
they are incorporating some the family aspects of CK2 also.
^ This is what I should have mentioned in my post; previous EU games would be a bit of a stretch. Although there are plenty of choices and consequences in EU, it's not quite as "personal" as a "role-playing" experience, such as the managing of a dynasty in CK.

I'm quite looking forward to EU4. I feel that the combination of EU's scope with CK's more personal approach is going to lead to quite a fantastic experience. I just wonder if this merging of gameplay will spell the end of CK. After all, if both series become too similar, there wouldn't be much point in carrying on with both. As a bigger fan of CK than EU, I hope they can both continue to co-exist.
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July 13th, 2013, 10:24
CK2 has been very successful, so I doubt they will discontinue it any time soon. Also, I recall, they recently committed to supporting it for another 2 years. I'm rather hoping, in fact, that they retro fit CK2 with some of the improvements from EU4 - the new interface, for instance, looks like a big jump in usability.

When I think of RPG features I tend to mostly think of character differentiation and progression, which CK2 has a lot of. But in fact it doesn't much matter to me whether it is characters or something else that is progressing - you can do much the same sort of thing with say cities or stars in 4x games. They can have attributes (defence, garrison, manufacturing power etc.) and analogues to crafting (e.g. you need 10 wood to make a pallisade) and even inventory (e.g. your capital discovers a great philosopher).
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July 13th, 2013, 10:55
EU games are pure strategies(with minor RPG elements in case of CK, Sengoku and Rome) so I don't think they should be covered in news.
As I said before I think EU 4 will be milestone in series like EU 3 was, there are some big changes in series that will affect future games.I don't know if they will stick to new "no sliders" policy for future games because I am not sure how Victoria or Hearts of iron would work without them.
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July 13th, 2013, 11:10
Originally Posted by Nameless one View Post
EU games are pure strategies(with minor RPG elements in case of CK, Sengoku and Rome) so I don't think they should be covered in news.
As I said before I think EU 4 will be milestone in series like EU 3 was, there are some big changes in series that will affect future games.I don't know if they will stick to new "no sliders" policy for future games because I am not sure how Victoria or Hearts of iron would work without them.
I don't think the question is whether Paradox's games would be classified as RPGs by a judge and jury, clearly they wouldn't, but whether a substantial amount of people here might be interested in this type of game.

To my mind the most exciting and vibrant area of PC gaming design right now is this cross over between strategy gaming and role playing games. And it is happening from both sides. We are getting RPGs and RPG tactics games with much deeper strategy elements. Conversely, strategy games are incorporating more and more RPG features, viz Fallen Enchantress Legendary Heroes. I think RPGWatch should be there to view these emerging developments from all sides. And who cares about precise definitions anyway?
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July 13th, 2013, 11:44
Originally Posted by Roq View Post
CK2 has been very successful, so I doubt they will discontinue it any time soon. Also, I recall, they recently committed to supporting it for another 2 years.
I was not aware of that, this is good news! I would really like to see a CK3 that continues to evolve the series.


Originally Posted by Roq View Post
I don't think the question is whether Paradox's games would be classified as RPGs by a judge and jury, clearly they wouldn't, but whether a substantial amount of people here might be interested in this type of game.
I agree. I think there are enough "role-playing" opportunities in the games to justify coverage here, especially since they qualify as a type of game that I imagine many RPG fans on the PC platform would have interest in. Other strategy game probably wouldn't cut it - Rome 2, for example - but if silly classification debates of "what makes an RPG?" are thrown out, Paradox titles offer a lot of similarities to the games that RPGWatch users typically enjoy or show interest in.

Originally Posted by Roq View Post
To my mind the most exciting and vibrant area of PC gaming design right now is this cross over between strategy gaming and role playing games. And it is happening from both sides. We are getting RPGs and RPG tactics games with much deeper strategy elements. Conversely, strategy games are incorporating more and more RPG features, viz Fallen Enchantress Legendary Heroes. I think RPGWatch should be there to view these emerging developments from all sides. And who cares about precise definitions anyway?
This is an exciting development, and it's something that I've wanted to see for a long time. I've long thought that grand strategy games are excellent sandbox/unscripted environments for implementing choice and consequence and the telling of personal "stories" through political manipulation, family dynasties, warfare, espionage, etc. If it were possible to have a grand strategy game with a completely unscripted campaign but with great dialogue and evolving "stories" based on the world's state and the player's choices, I would be in heaven.

And regarding definitions, it really doesn't matter to me - a great game is a great game. But there are certain things that I want out of a gaming experience, and chief among those is player agency. Player involvement and the ability to play an active role in the story or setting is why I gravitate towards certain games, and it's the biggest advantage that this media has over any other. Strategy games and RPGs happen to have the most player agency compared to the other genres, and that is very appealing to someone like me.
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July 13th, 2013, 18:24
Originally Posted by Nerevarine View Post
And regarding definitions, it really doesn't matter to me - a great game is a great game. But there are certain things that I want out of a gaming experience, and chief among those is player agency. Player involvement and the ability to play an active role in the story or setting is why I gravitate towards certain games, and it's the biggest advantage that this media has over any other. Strategy games and RPGs happen to have the most player agency compared to the other genres, and that is very appealing to someone like me.
Agree with your thoughts about player agency, very well put. A lot of mainstream "modern" games are very much constrained by having to align your character throughout the game with particular story steps, cut scenes, voice overs etc. so all you really get to do is waggle your sword, AK47 or whatever a bit between scripted events in which your character is a puppet. It's very hard to incorporate meaningful decisions into this type of game and since they serve everything up to you on a plate, the game world feels rigid & constrained, like early adventure games where if you headed in the "wrong" direction you got instantly terminated.
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July 13th, 2013, 18:28
Latest Civ 5 expansion pretty much nullified my limited interest in EU4.
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July 13th, 2013, 18:54
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
Latest Civ 5 expansion pretty much nullified my limited interest in EU4.
For me traditional 4x games such as Civ 5 can be great fun in the early stages, but suffer very heavily from micromanagement overload as your kingdom size increases. Usually by the time you reach the middle stages of the game it's all over bar the shouting from a competitive point of view, but it's a very drawn out process getting the AI to lie down and die.

Paradox haven't solved this problem entirely yet (we'll have to see in EU4), but it's not nearly so acute, because the economy is much more concentrated and to take CK2 (their most recent game) as an example: As you progress through the game you also (if you play for territory) progress up the county/duchy/kingdom/empire hierarchy. The clever mechanics in the game mean that you can only control the vassals directly beneath you in the hierarchy. And since you also restricted in the size of your "demesne" i.e the territories you can directly control, micromanagement is much reduced.
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July 13th, 2013, 18:54
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
Latest Civ 5 expansion pretty much nullified my limited interest in EU4.
Really? to me it was completely the opposite. I was a huge fan of Civilization from 1 to 4… and then I discovered Paradox games (first Rome, then EU3 and later CK2). When I got Civ 5 I was very excited since I loved the series, but after I started playing it for a bit, it all fell so shallow, like playing Tic tac toe with my nephew after playing Chess.

Can they be considered RPGs? obviously not, but you could argue that taking a country from its humble beginnings, with an army of peasants and not much knowledge of anything, to an empire with gunpowder technology, navy, complex buildings, etc. is sort of like roleplaying a country, and advancing in levels just like in RPGs, with lots of choices & consequences (do you westernize? do you go for the religious reform? do you vassalize or conquer? do you help this country or that?). In this view it's more of an RPG than most so called 'shooter-RPGs' I've seen.

I loved EU3 to death, but I'm not as excited about EU4 as I would be (still preordered it though), basically because they changed their EU3's "anything can happen" approach to a much more deterministic way. As RPGers you would think EU3 approach is obviously better, since it gives you more freedom, but lots of Paradox gamers are 'arm-chair historians' and cry loudly every time something doesn't happen as it should have according to history, and looks like EU4 is catering to this crowd.
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July 13th, 2013, 19:21
Originally Posted by wolfing View Post
Really? to me it was completely the opposite. I was a huge fan of Civilization from 1 to 4… and then I discovered Paradox games (first Rome, then EU3 and later CK2). When I got Civ 5 I was very excited since I loved the series, but after I started playing it for a bit, it all fell so shallow, like playing Tic tac toe with my nephew after playing Chess.
I do think EU games are better than Civ games but more complexity doesn't always mean better game.As I said I like Eu games lot more than Civ 5 but Civ 5 is still fun and bloody addictive game,
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July 14th, 2013, 06:27
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
Latest Civ 5 expansion pretty much nullified my limited interest in EU4.
Is it better or worse than the orginal release? I stopped playing and never came back to the game.

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July 14th, 2013, 07:02
Originally Posted by DArtagnan View Post
Latest Civ 5 expansion pretty much nullified my limited interest in EU4.

I don't understand what you are saying here, as both series are very different from each other, thus offering vastly different experiences. How does one effect the interest in the other?
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July 14th, 2013, 09:47
Originally Posted by Roq View Post
For me traditional 4x games such as Civ 5 can be great fun in the early stages, but suffer very heavily from micromanagement overload as your kingdom size increases. Usually by the time you reach the middle stages of the game it's all over bar the shouting from a competitive point of view, but it's a very drawn out process getting the AI to lie down and die.
I never play these games against the AI, except as practice. I'm only into strategy games for the multiplayer potential. I consider defeating the AI an inevitability in any game you play to any serious degree - so that's boring.

As for the mid-late game, Civ 5 expansions have hugely improved those aspects of the game - and have done a lot to make them interesting. I haven't played BNW much yet - but it's clear to me that the mid-late game problem has been dealt with to a large degree.

It really is the best Civ at this point.

Paradox haven't solved this problem entirely yet (we'll have to see in EU4), but it's not nearly so acute, because the economy is much more concentrated and to take CK2 (their most recent game) as an example: As you progress through the game you also (if you play for territory) progress up the county/duchy/kingdom/empire hierarchy. The clever mechanics in the game mean that you can only control the vassals directly beneath you in the hierarchy. And since you also restricted in the size of your "demesne" i.e the territories you can directly control, micromanagement is much reduced.
I don't have a big problem with micromanagment, as long as there's the potential to automate most of it - which is the case in Civ 5. Also, I definitely prefer some level of micromanagment to the extremely abstract nature of the Paradox games.

I need much more tangible visual feedback than what Paradox give their players. It's like everything I do in those games is about adjusting a slider and imagine what's actually happening as numbers go up and down.

That said, I like the stronger historical flavor of EU and CK. I love that sense of real history unfolding - even if it's very, very abstract.
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July 14th, 2013, 09:49
Originally Posted by wolfing View Post
Really? to me it was completely the opposite. I was a huge fan of Civilization from 1 to 4 and then I discovered Paradox games (first Rome, then EU3 and later CK2). When I got Civ 5 I was very excited since I loved the series, but after I started playing it for a bit, it all fell so shallow, like playing Tic tac toe with my nephew after playing Chess.

Can they be considered RPGs? obviously not, but you could argue that taking a country from its humble beginnings, with an army of peasants and not much knowledge of anything, to an empire with gunpowder technology, navy, complex buildings, etc. is sort of like roleplaying a country, and advancing in levels just like in RPGs, with lots of choices & consequences (do you westernize? do you go for the religious reform? do you vassalize or conquer? do you help this country or that?). In this view it's more of an RPG than most so called 'shooter-RPGs' I've seen.

I loved EU3 to death, but I'm not as excited about EU4 as I would be (still preordered it though), basically because they changed their EU3's "anything can happen" approach to a much more deterministic way. As RPGers you would think EU3 approach is obviously better, since it gives you more freedom, but lots of Paradox gamers are 'arm-chair historians' and cry loudly every time something doesn't happen as it should have according to history, and looks like EU4 is catering to this crowd.
I consider Civ 5 with expansions a very, very complex game. I'm not sure what game you've been playing - but it doesn't sound like Civ.

However, I do concede that vanilla Civ 5 was simplified to a disturbing degree - but most of that has been dealt with.

As I noted above - I largely prefer the tangible nature of Civ to the abstract nature of EU. Obviously, Paradox don't have the resources that Firaxis have - but they're not doing a hell of a lot to evolve their basic design paradigm.
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