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Dev Diary #143 - The Next Chapter

Greetings!

I’m @rageair, the Game Director for Crusader Kings III, and today I’m excited to present to you Chapter III - in this Dev Diary we’ll briefly go over the themes of each of the expansions that will make up the full package and take sneak a peek at their features!

Chapter III is definitely our most ambitious chapter yet, with a Core Expansion, Major Expansion, and an Event Pack (as well as an instant chapter unlock!) New ways of playing the game, and big, sweeping systems is the name of the game this year. Let's have a look, shall we!




Core Expansion - Legends of the Dead

Legends of the Dead is all about the map - specifically that which spreads throughout it! Core Expansions will, as mentioned in previous Dev Diaries, focus on broad systemic changes to the core gameplay loop, or high-impact systems that affect large parts of the game world. As this is our first Core Expansion, we wanted systems that were big and all-encompassing, affecting all rulers on the map in one way or another! With that said, here’s a high-level list of what you will see in the Expansion and its accompanying update:

Legends
Tales of your or your ancestors' epic deeds will travel across the map, spreading news of your glory across borders into foreign realms. Embellished tales of heroism or piety were a massive and common part of medieval life, and here we’re allowing you to write your own saga - quite literally! As your legend spreads, a book will be updated with your story - and events you get along the way may allow you to… alter certain aspects to suit you better, after all perhaps it was a dragon that your grandfather slew rather than a bear! The more your legend spreads across the map, and the more rulers that propagate it, the more famed it will become.

Plagues
Plagues are the second thing that spreads across the map, but unlike legends they are destructive and nefarious - with a promise to shake up the game! Deadly diseases can sweep across your lands, spawned by either random chance or the activity of armies, and they will destroy development and kill characters with a vengeance. All plagues are different, with varying effects - such as consumption ending the lives of elders with haste, measles shortening the lives of children, and Holy Fire (aka the Dancing Plague) making rulers… move erratically. Of course, there will be ways to combat and recover your lands from these terrible maladies!

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[Image - One of the ways plagues are visualized]

The Black Death
A looming threat that appears towards the later eras - there is no escape from the Black Death, no matter how much you prepare, the end is nigh!

Legitimacy
This is a new measurement of your right to rule and affects a whole host of other systems from factions, vassalization, and even title creation. Of course, this new value will heavily tie into both Legends and Plagues, but also a myriad of other systems. A legitimate ruler will have a much easier time running a realm… but some very tempting actions, such as unrightful title revocation, will decrease legitimacy - making it a precarious balancing act!


Major Expansion - Roads to Power

Climbing your way up from Count to Emperor is a challenge - but to claw your way up the treacherous political ladder of the Byzantine bureaucracy or claiming a new realm as a destitute Adventurer are more challenging yet! This Major Expansion introduces two brand new ways of playing the game, one focused on the Administrative governance of Eastern Rome, and the other on traveling the map in search of fame and fortune. These features have been oft-requested since the early days of Crusader Kings, and we thought it high time to do them - we're pulling out all the stops!

Imperial Administration
Take the reins of a powerful Noble Family within Byzantium and lobby for powerful governorships. Use your influence to improve your standing, improve your estate, and ultimately convince the other families that you should rule as emperor!

Adventurers
Set out across the world as a historical adventurer, one of your own making, or keep playing your beloved character after being unfortunately deposed from your lands! Travel to distant realms, take on contracts, gather friends, wealth, and fame - do mercenary work, or settle in new lands.

Everything Byzantium
I’m not exaggerating when I say that this expansion will be dripping with Byzantine flavor. From imperial fashion to new buildings, historical flavor, beautiful mosaics, and much more - the game will immerse you in the setting with a passion.

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[Image - Everyone likes grapes]


Event Pack - Wandering Nobles

Travel is a mechanic that really connects your characters to the map, and in this Event Pack we want to flesh the mechanic out with even more reasons to travel, and things that can happen on the road - new sights to see, new paths to take, and new stories to weave together into an immersive narrative!

Is it about the journey, or the destination? Your characters can decide for themselves as they engage with a new Traveler Lifestyle!

Instant Unlock - Couture of the Capets

The French were a fancy lot, and with this Instant Unlock you can admire their splendor during the high medieval period. As always we’ve put a lot of effort into research to make sure that the clothes are not only glorious, but as historical as we can make them!



That’s it for now! Next week we’ll begin posting Dev Diaries for Legends of the Dead, so keep your eyes out! Also, a reminder that Chapter III is available right now, and if you purchase it now you will immediately get access to the Couture of the Capets (as well as the expansions as soon as they are released, of course!)

We’re very excited to show off the work we’ve done, this really is the biggest chapter we’ve ever done! Until next time!
 
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Q3. So yeah, that would be around July, August and September.
Hopefully september, so they aren't releasing right before the office headcount is below 50% of normal for several weeks.
 
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Will there be mechanics for unlanded characters to act as Missionaries? Given the importance of missionaries to Christianizing Scandinavia, I think it would be both warranted and a very interesting way that playing an unlanded character could effect the world.
 
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The adventurers alone changes everything.
Can't even play CK3 anymore without overthinking how much rags to riches games I'm gonna be playing.
 
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Cool, but I'm wondering: why there is still no mechanics for tension between the HRE emperor-the pope? The relation between those two was super important for the whole Europe; and changes for Byz might be interesting but are of no importance.
 
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Playing as Adventurer is huge. This just might open up playable Holy Orders as well. Join one and get yourself trough merit or intrigue the leader of it.
 
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Will there be mechanics for unlanded characters to act as Missionaries? Given the importance of missionaries to Christianizing Scandinavia, I think it would be both warranted and a very interesting way that playing an unlanded character could effect the world.
The missionaries were an important part of CK2. It was very strange when I found out that in CK3 they are missing...
 
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The Administration should be without dukes and counts, you get an entire governorate as a kingdom and can develop provinces directly, get income from it and be taxed on it, all without middlemen
 
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changes for Byz might be interesting but are of no importance.
Learning from the Romans and denying the Romans were the Romans were both an important part of medieval politics. There is a reason the King of the Germans decided to call himself "Emperor of the Romans", after all.
 
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Seems all great and wonderfull ... only problem is that you still haven't fixed the console version, and after i moved to playing on mac you also broke that .... are there any plans on ever fixing those, or are you just going to keep ignoring these platforms?
 
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Will there be mechanics for unlanded characters to act as Missionaries? Given the importance of missionaries to Christianizing Scandinavia, I think it would be both warranted and a very interesting way that playing an unlanded character could effect the world.
This might need a future religion/Crusade expansion pack in the next few chapters. I think mods to provide event packs and flavor will be important until a few expansions from now. It will take that long to fully realize the vast potential of the landless character mechanic.
 
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I think that's actually good, the start game should be harder. I always found it weird how so many times i could marry a lowborn and no one says anything about it. Slight change of topic but I think legitimacy may even help things like England, usually when you take England as William you almost never have the north rebel against you unless you force them to.
Depends on Paradox balances it. If Legitimacy is as easy to game as every other game currency/system, having fewer appropriate females for heirs or characters to marry in early game is "ok".

I say OK because it is a better game if Paradox makes Legitimacy harder to game and there were more appropriate mating partners in the early game. This current restriction in partners is only a secondary balancing factor for Legitimacy. It causes other problems in the game.
 
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Only thing that would be worse is getting stuck inside the city as it quarantines.

No wait it could be worse. You could be in the city where the Black Death starts.
Sir, that's a very modern concept of quarantines. The medieval quarantine would literally keep you away from entering the city for 40 days (hence the name) on your arrival. No one would ever stop you from leaving a city even if you were sick since you would just be someone else's problem

speaking of quarantines Dubrovnik was one of the first European cities if not the first to introduce a 30 day quarantine on nearby islands during the Plague periods so I hope that gets an honorable mention in the DLC considering the area is really lacking in immersion. The devs decision start it with Serbian culture in 867 start still baffles me and we are yet to get any unique buildings that have been requested since day 1 which is pretty sad considering they have so many to choose from
 
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I think the key thing here is increasing difficulty through mechanics. Things like epidemics or legitimacy crises can potentially make the game more difficult, but you should be able to mitigate this damage by preparing properly and understanding gameplay mechanics. This should make it more popular than random harm events were, where a lot of players felt like they were just being arbitrarily kneecapped by random chance.
My emperor character suddenly getting lunatic through a random event always pissed me off.
 
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My emperor character suddenly getting lunatic through a random event always pissed me off.
Yeah, I thought that harm events could be an interesting addition, but when I tried to get the achievement and after just three years Matilda drowned in the lake without having any control over it, I realised that these events could be an interesting addition if they were implemented in the game properly, but they are not. They're just random "LOL, you're dead" announcements. Well thank you very much.
 
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I wonder will there be unique skill trees for landless players as currently they are restricted to landed characters.

Would really depend on whether the landless characters will just be adventurers or courtiers but skill trees could be linked to the current professional, traits like poet, physician, gardener, military skill traits like reaver or siege engineer. Perhaps the skills experience you build could be linked to the yoe of court you reside in.
 
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Will the "ancestor worship" and "reincarnation" tenets play into the legends and legitimacy mechanics? Because they are rather lackluster in their current state. And moving on to traditions, will "storytellers", "refined poetry", "northern stories/runestone raisers", "chanson de geste", and "mystical ancestors" affect story spread/embellishment?
 
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