5 of the Crusader Kings II devs were asked about their favorite feature in the game. Here is what they answered:
Doomdark - Henrik Fåhraeus – Project Leader & Lead Designer.
"I love the opinion system in Crusader Kings II. In the first game, you had a whole slew of overlapping concepts: stability, loyalty, "badboy", friends, rivals, and relations between countries. When you think about it, these are all basically the same thing: the views that characters have of each other, i.e. opinions. The new system unifies all of these concepts very nicely. You can see exactly why characters feel the way they do about each other, and it has a clear effect on the gameplay. It is unilateral, meaning your character can love another character, while that character still hates your guts. Needless to say, I am pushing for a similar system in our future games... "
Captain Gars – Niklas Strid – Historical Researcher & Content Scripter
"One of the game mechanics I like the most is plots. To be able to secretly plan for the demise of a hated enemy, or presenting your liege with a demand when you know you have the military power behind you to back it up is very enjoyable. Plots also help making AI characters come to life, as it gives them personal goals which they will pursue rather ruthlessly. Plots were introduced in Sengoku and was my favourite feature there as well, but with CKII I think we have managed to take them to another level. It's definitely a game mechanic I hope to see in more of our games from now on."
Johan Lerström - Programmer
"I love it when I notice that some random character in the periphery does something interesting or has something interesting happen to him or her. I sometimes keep track of what characters do their entire lives, following them around as they marry their hunchback niece and murder their brothers in an effort to reach their goals. Keeping an eye on your neighbors is not only an interesting distraction but also a great way to figure out who is vulnerable and who might become vulnerable with some nudging in the right direction."
Kallocain – Linda Kiby – Associate Producer
"Walking around in the office and hearing what people discuss during playing sessions. The situations can become so bizarre and weird. "I have too many sons, I can't give them all land! I'll need to marry them off or kill them I guess." Gives a certain flair to the conversations nowadays."
Tegus – Fredrik Zetterman – Programmer
"My favorite feature about CK2 is the succession wars. There you are, running your kingdom, everything is going great. Then BOOM - your ruler dies, half of your kingdom rises in rebellion when the evil twin brother tries to wrest the crown from your heir. It makes the game really interesting, because you really need to think about which titles you give to whom. You can't really overpower your heir too much either, since he might actually try to take the crown _before_ the current king dies "
Picture of everyone working on CKII in one way or another: