Welcome to another developer diary for Europa Universalis IV - the 25th one, in which we discuss the intricacies of the works of Lev Nikolajevitj Tolstoy.
Two concepts that have worked well in our recent games have been setting war goals and the ticking war score. The combination of the two has created a system where what you have to do to win a war is clear and easy to understand.
For newcomers, these systems work like this: war goals, introduced in Victoria II, are the targets you set for a war. These are tightly connected to the casus belli, so your war goal may be to take the core province that you are squabbling over. The “ticking war score”, which we introduced in Crusader Kings II, adds points to your war score as long as you have fulfilled the goals you have set. So if your goal is to take Berlin, your war score increases each day you occupy it.
However one of things that makes Europa Universalis peace system stand out, and that really shines in multiplayer, is its free flowing nature. How much you try to take and claim at the peace table depends very much on how the war is going at this current time. We wanted to preserve this fluid conception of war while still using elements of the war goal/ticking war score systems.
So we have introduced a compromise system. We continue the system of declaring war with a reason (the casus belli) and we add in a twist that the war goal gives you a target to start the war score ticking. This can be either province control or winning battles, depending on the casus belli you have chosen. When you meet your goal, your war score slowly starts to tick up to another 20%. On top of this, peace options require different amount of war score, depending to the war goal. So demanding the province that the war is about is much cheaper than any other province you might want to claim. This gives us a hybrid between the Europa Universalis peace system that you all know and the Crusader Kings II system.
New Peace Options.
We have added in a number of cool new peace options into the system.
One of the most interesting is you can ask for a core province of a third country that might not even be involved in the war to be transferred to them. This way you can weaken a country without having to take worthless indefensible province for yourself. You can, effectively, partition a neighbor that has been giving you trouble and build up credit with other states nearby.
You also have the option to demand that they pass some of their trade power to you for the duration of the peace, instead of just asking for hard cash. In some instances this will be a better way to earn money and will greatly weaken an opponent’s financial situation for as long as the truce holds.
As we mentioned earlier, the emperor also has the option to revoke the electorship from unruly electors through a peacetreaty.
Perhaps the most interesting is the change we have made to rolling back Imperial reforms in the Holy Roman Empire. Now you can do it for as many times are there are reforms, demanding that things be rolled back as far as you need to in order to defend the ancient liberties and freedoms of the Imperial Princes. The HRE is no longer a ticking time bomb in the centre of Europe. This, coupled with the changes to the HRE we talked about a few weeks ago should make central Europe a place where many interesting goals and demands can negotiated at the point of a pike.
One of our stated goals with Europa Universalis IV was to improve all our interfaces, and the peace interface is no exception. The first task was to include all the new information you would need to get the most value out of these new systems we’ve introduced. Then we took a good look at the old systems to see what we could do to improve them.
We have already iterated on developing the peace interface several times, and, if time allows, we plan further improvements based on our internal testing. We now have a new single peace screen with tabs for offering and demanding. Now before you ask! NO you cannot both offer and demand something. But this does mean that if you accidentally had selected “offer tribute” instead of “demand tribute” (and who among us hasn’t done that?), you no longer have to click cancel and go back and start over. You can simply click on a tab and focus on the important things – bullying your neighbors. This is a seemingly small change, but it does prevent unnecessary do-overs.
Although perhaps my favorite change is that the peace screen now remembers your last offer. So if you are just biding time trying to get your enemy to see reason and accept a perfectly fair deal, you don’t have to click your choices over and over again to put together the offer you want.
+ Bonus: Europa Universalis: The Musical – Our April Fools spoof!
+ Download the songs Empire Borders, Prestige & Casus Belli here!
+ Bonus: High-lights from the Europa Universalis IV live stream!
A Paradox Development Studio Feature - Europa Universalis IV - Part 1
A Paradox Development Studio Feature - Europa Universalis IV - Part 2