CK3: Is it *really* a complete failure, though?

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grommile

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If you don't understand what I mean, enjoy this very well written semi-AAR.
I read about five paragraphs of that AAR before deciding that it wasn't worth my time.

It had an audience in mind, and it wasn't "people who like the game".
 
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johnty5

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Sure, there were some that couldn't be turned off. And there were plenty of references that couldn't be removed either. But the two examples in the post I quoted -- bear-heir and Viking Cthulhu -- could both definitely be turned off.
Absolutely. Was just pointing out that @mrstevehazzard's point - that CK2 was no less silly than CK3 - isn't incorrect just because the two specific examples he gave could be turned off in the settings.
 
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Haze340

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I guess it's a question of success condition. If the success condition is "be a good game that's fun to play", presumably CK3 succeeds for most people. Critical reception would certainly suggest that's the case. If the success condition is "be an across-the-board upgrade on CK2", presumably it's a failure; with CK2's development history and long, long tail of support, that's probably an impossible standard. And if the success condition is "retain CK2's successes, improve on that game's weak points and provide a base for future improvements and developments" -- I feel pretty comfortable judging that as a partial success. But unless a standard is agreed on, I don't know how much value there is in arguing over Failure: Y/N?.
The only value I see in the discussion of whether or not this game is a failure, at least in the case of this thread, is for those who are looking for their opinions to be affirmed by others, which is to say I don't see any value at all. There has been a lot of "I don't like this game and it's a problem if you do" and conversely "I like this game and it's a problem if you don't" posts.
 
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johnty5

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It had an audience in mind, and it wasn't "people who like the game".
This is a key problem around here at the moment.

Too often, discussions on the forum aren't good-faith discussions between people who like the game but disagree about specific things - they're discussions between people who like the game and want it to improve vs people who dislike that game and want to "hold Paradox accountable" for making it that way. The fact that the latter pretend they're here to make good faith contributions on how that game can be improved simply adds to the confusion.
 
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BrokenSky

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This is a key problem around here at the moment.

Too often, discussions on the forum aren't good-faith discussions between people who like the game but disagree about specific things - they're discussions between people who like the game and want it to improve vs people who dislike that game and want to "hold Paradox accountable" for making it that way. The fact that the former pretend they're here to make good faith contributions on how that game can be improved simply adds to the confusion.

That's entirely untrue and comes of as genuinely insulting. The fact that you're broadly dismissing anyone who disagrees as being the same and explicitly disregard the reasons they themselves give for their positions seems to be more than a little in bad faith.

If you actually (were to) read the whole of this AAR / review, you would see pretty clearly that the OP (of that thread) does genuinely seem to like the game as much as he dislikes it's problems - the point of the thread is that it clearly highlights which problems come up most often and shows in context how they make the game worse. I've seen plenty of threads which comment on various issues, ranging from vague comments like "characters feel dead and un-interactive" to very specific "why is my honest, just, kind son murdering a random peasant in the woods and then trying to cover it up?". Unlike the vague threads, it gives concrete examples of issues. Unlike the hyper specific threads, it gives more than one example. Unlike basically all the threads, it highlights problems with the frequency that they come up - and frankly in doing so it gave me a better idea of what was wrong with the game than I had after over 300hrs of playing it, because while I could see that something was wrong, I was tending to ignore the problems whenever they came up so I could keep having fun, which meant that I couldn't see the wood for the trees as it were.

(For reference, the main issues it ended up highlighting were that events tended not to care about the state of the mechanics-side of the game, were often one-off and didn't care about each other and often had wildly different values of resources assigned to actions, which combined with scaling costs in places where they often don't make thematic sense, leads to a general feeling of incoherence. The wildly different values the game places on actions relative to each other in particular is a key problem, hence the running joke of comparing every prestige cost against the baseline of what it costs to fire an antiquarian, or highlighting how imprisoning a presumed member of the clergy during one event costs four times the piety of executing your realm priest in another.)

If you genuinely feel that it has nothing of value comes out of analysis like this, I can only assume that you haven't yet spent the time to engage with it in good faith - in which case I would recommend it? It's a good read (though I think the voice you use for the OP 'in character' in your head may matter to your enjoyment?)
 
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Gwydden

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It's certainly not my intent to invalidate the opinions of those who have played the game longer. But I do question the assertion that playing the game for longer (or if you played CK2) makes you more qualified to rule if the game is a complete failure or not.
I wanted to address OP directly, so here goes: saying that CK3 is a "complete failure" is, at best, extreme hyperbole. I struggle to think of any notable game release that could be described that way, and it is clear plenty of people like CK3, and that it has succeeded in growing PDS' audience.

It is also the case that, had I played CK3 without prior experience with CK2, I would probably like the former more and be less critical of it, and that then I would likely have had a harder time getting into CK2 seeing as the sequel is far more accessible and much better looking. A lot of the discontent in these forums is bound to come from CK2 fans, particularly since newcomers to CK3 who dislike it are unlikely to be invested enough in the franchise to come here and complain.

Even so, I'll reiterate that originally I was optimistic about CK3 and thought the base game showed promise. I felt positive or at least neutral about most changes and innovations from the previous game, except the religion system, and even there I could see what they were going for even if I disagreed. No, my issue with CK3 at the moment is that I've found both DLC thus far mostly disappointing. I could forgive flaws in the base game with the expectation that most would be addressed in time, but now I worry the devs ideas for future content won't be anything I find worthwhile or meaningful.

CK2 expansions could be hit and miss, too, and not all of them added content I was interested in—I never bothered with Sunset Invasion and Monks and Mystics was rather dreadful overall—but these are two misses in a row for a new game, in my book.

But I don't want to be a negative nancy either, and I certainly don't begrudge anyone else's enjoyment, so why don't I link an actual historian's praise for Royal Court.
 
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Flockingbird

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I suspect the onslaught of angry posts immediately after RC’s release may have left a lingering impression on the minds of many of the posters who are enjoying RC. Some of those early posts did constitute trolling/flaming. However, it’s important to note that most of those who were trolling not only were new to the forum, but also were quickly banned. At any rate, this group of posters has left the forum.

It would be a pity to continue to taint these discussions with the impressions left over from a wave of posters who are no longer participating the conversation.

I am enjoying RC, and I agree with many of the criticisms, even if I don’t always enjoy how some of those criticisms are expressed. (Tiax’s AAR was a delight, though!—and sure, some of the other posters’ comments were snarky, but that’s to be expected when a long-awaited expansion disappoints so many.).

How about a clean slate for remaining discussions about RC and the state of the game? There’s no need for dividing into warring camps. We all love or loved the game at some point, and we all want it to get better.
 
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Kurt Pat

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Ck3 dont go in the direction I would have like it goes, but it dont make it a bad game. For RC there is probably a lot of bad faith. I saw lot of peoples spit on the DLC because it was not a dlc about war or [ insert what you want ]. Roughly they buy a bicycle then complain because it is not a truck.
 

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My main issue is, and i am obviously generalizing but this is just my honest perception, that most newcommers to CK3 are seemingly not really interested in history all that much and just want a "le funny game of thrones pagan nudist cult simulator". And it seems the devs aren't either.

I am perfectly fine with the games having a more rpg-ish focus, however i for the love of God can't agree with the direction on offering maximum freedom for players to fiddle with religions and cultures however they want, without any resistance from the church or similar, and in stark contrast to their historical importance at the time polishing pagan cults with attention and mechanics while the groups that actually had and gained influence during the games timeframe, like Catholicism, Orthodoxy and even Islam, lack mechanics, lack events and lack attention. Where is a proper crusade? Where is the College of Cardinals? Where is the focus on different forms of government/vassal-liege relations?

It's one thing to demand absolute historical railroading, i am not doing that. I like many of the more outlandish additions to CK2, however they rightfully felt as an addition, not a core gameplay element. I instead am asking whether the game will be in an authentic historical setting, or merely a general simulator of society with a medievalsitic aesthetic? If it is the latter than CK3 is practically a GoT skinned Civilization game.
 
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Baron Bratwurst

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a "le funny game of thrones pagan nudist cult simulator"
Catholicism, Orthodoxy and even Islam, lack mechanics, lack events and lack attention. Where is a proper crusade? Where is the College of Cardinals?
Yes, but instead you can vassalize the Pope and make him your court jester!
 
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Gwydden

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My main issue is, and i am obviously generalizing but this is just my honest perception, that most newcommers to CK3 are seemingly not really interested in history all that much and just want a "le funny game of thrones pagan nudist cult simulator". And it seems the devs aren't either.
That's my impression as well, unfortunately. I remember a gaming journalist, presumably a newcomer to the franchise, basically saying that she was having a blast with CK3 but didn't care for the historical setting, so why not check out these fantasy total conversion mods...

Honestly, I would have been fine with PDS making a fantasy GSG that was character- and dynasty-driven a la CK. That way they get to do all the wacky stuff they want and don't have to worry about historical authenticity. There would have been a lot less comparisons to CK2, and I've no doubt it'd have been way more popular with newcomers.

Maybe this is a grass is greener kind of deal, but I've always gotten the impression that the other PDS franchises treat their historical periods somewhat more seriously. If so, that is probably a combination of CK's own popularity, drawing in folks who like the premise even if they don't care for the setting, and the maligned status of medieval history in general.
 
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CK3 was/is a critical and commercial success. No negativity on this forum changes that.
Paradox also said EU: Rome and Victoria 2 sold well in the beginning.
 
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Ashantai

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Please keep your posts on topic and productive.
 

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Paradox also said EU: Rome and Victoria 2 sold well in the beginning.
C'mon, the numbers of players on Steam over more than a week look strong indeed. So, in the sales front I don't believe PDX is suffering after the great numbers of the title at release.

I feel between the Royal Edition pre order and those who bought Royal Court separately the sales numbers are high. I have so much certainty in this as in the fact that PDX fumbled with the subject of the expansion being a useless 3D court that to add insult to injury looks like a scene from early 2000's games - subjects recurrently mentioned in lots of different Steam reviews - thus only a 48% (as of today) of positive reviews by the Steam users.

All in all and despite the very good cultural system devised, the expansion doesn't match the price asked neither in its main theme nor in its full content. There were 20€ CK2 expansions that offered more gameplay content than RC at 30€.
 
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@RynGM To be fair, I can see what you are saying. This forum is pretty heavy with criticism, but I do not think that it is toxic. I also think that the criticism is warranted, for PDX is not doing a great job at the moment. The player numbers reflects that as well.

I'm flicking through thread after thread. There's post after post about how "x has been a failure" or "y is a catastrophe." It's a malicious act by Paradox, who are either fools, or actively conspiring to make the player suffer.

The common solution offered is that the developers need to sit in a corner, think about all the terrible things they've done, then gut the game until it's good again. Sometimes this involves pulling the game from the shelf, or releasing a new DLC to fix it.

What you should look at is the quality of comments that are leveled here. It is extremely high. The PDX player base goes to great lengths to describe their perceived problems and shortfalls, of which there are many.
Do not confuse this with nostalgia for CK2 though. CK2 had its own limitations and problems, and CK3 was the promised successor that could improve on all the good of CK2, redesign where needed and trash what didn't work. Instead, CK3 is feels like 10 steps backwards in all but visuals. We don't even have proper realm laws.. I mean, come on.

Sure, CK3 is much more visually appealing, which is something I like. But visuals in a 4x game is simply not enough to carry it through. CK3 promise to be a grand strategy game which links character stories to the world in which they live. It neither has any amount of strategy nor does it connect the stories of the characters. It's just a thoroughly shallow experience.
 
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I think there’s a pretty simple explanation for the divergent opinions about the game. The things that are really good about it don’t really apply to those of us who loved ck2.
I don't feel like you really speak for all (or perhaps even most) CK2 players, though. I have hundreds of hours in CK2; I enjoyed playing it a lot, I own all the DLCs and have played both with and without various mods. But I have no reason to go back to it now that CK3 is here, because it's better in every way that I care about. Which is (this list is not exhaustive) that everything is more customizable, there are fewer arbitrary hard-blocks giving me more freedom to do what I want to do, there are fewer gratuitous and repetitive pop-ups, the mechanics are easier to understand at a glance (and yes, even someone with hundreds of CK2 can appreciate that), traits change less randomly so characters are more engaging, and I especially appreciate how Royal Court is moving us away from the map and towards something else, even if just for a time.
 
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I don't feel like you really speak for all (or perhaps even most) CK2 players, though. I have hundreds of hours in CK2; I enjoyed playing it a lot, I own all the DLCs and have played both with and without various mods. But I have no reason to go back to it now that CK3 is here, because it's better in every way that I care about. Which is (this list is not exhaustive) that everything is more customizable, there are fewer arbitrary hard-blocks giving me more freedom to do what I want to do, there are fewer gratuitous and repetitive pop-ups, the mechanics are easier to understand at a glance (and yes, even someone with hundreds of CK2 can appreciate that), traits change less randomly so characters are more engaging, and I especially appreciate how Royal Court is moving us away from the map and towards something else, even if just for a time.
That’s fair. I certainly can’t claim to speak for every ck2 player, and my claim of most is obviously a guess from what I’ve seen on the forums, which is far from an exact science. Your list of high points is not that different from mine, and of course whether we each find those things valuable is subjective.
 
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That’s fair. I certainly can’t claim to speak for every ck2 player, and my claim of most is obviously a guess from what I’ve seen on the forums, which is far from an exact science. Your list of high points is not that different from mine, and of course whether we each find those things valuable is subjective.
The opinion of the product here in the forums or statistically more relevant in the opinions given on steam does not reflect in the least the preference of CK2 over CK3. After all, if that was the case, CK3 at release wouldn't receive "Very Positive" reviews while the expansion receives "Mixed" reviews with 52% of the users that rated it giving it a "Thumbs Down". As a casuistic example I am a great fan of CK2 who loved the game that was quick to recognize the potentital of CK3 giving it a heartfelt "Thumbs Up" at release and quicker still to recognize the misguided approach to this big DLC giving it a "Thumbs Down".

Thus, I feel the problem doesn't linger on how much the veterans enjoyed CK2 more but the value for expectations and money of Royal Court. For me, in spite of a very good new culture system and a needed but unbalanced artifact implementation (my first character aquired a great total of 9 items without trying really hard!), Royal Court falls short on the subjects that should add to the game: deeper mechanics, instead of an incipient 3D court taken out of Morrowind or at most Oblivion 3D quality and that by itself, adds nothing to the game, only very significant resources better spent elsewhere.
 
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