Developer Diary Number 1 – Why?

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King

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Well this is it, the first developer diary for Victoria 2. You’ll be seeing a lot more of these over the coming weeks; we aim for one a week but we know now that this won’t always happen. Either there will be things like holidays (I know what you are thinking: ‘but this is communist Sweden and we do get those kinds of things here’) or major games shows will interrupt this weekly schedule. However, most weeks until gold you’ll see a diary from me.

Well first up, those of you with a keen eye for detail will have seen that this is not Johan posting, so who the hell am I? I am Chris King and I am the designer for Victoria 2. I joined Paradox three and half years ago and my first project was Victoria Revolutions. Victoria has always had a special place in my heart because of that. In a fit of honesty I must say that although I am credited designer, it does not logically follow that everything you see in the game is my idea. Game design is very much a collaborative work and the whole team pitches in at various points. Still the joy of the credit for game design means you end up being the poor guy who has to write everything down. So that’s why it has fallen to me to write the developer diaries.

So the first question you must all be wondering, why Victoria 2? It is probably no secret that Victoria was not Paradox’s most commercially successful title. Which did make it less likely to become a sequel that some of our more popular titles. However, here we are doing a sequel.

There are two main reasons for this, first up was Victoria Revolutions. Now it itself it wasn’t a blockbuster, those of you who follow game sales charts will notice it wasn’t quite able to shift games like World of Warcraft or the Sims of the top of the charts, but as an expansion it had its following. So one idea bounced around was a second expansion to Victoria and ideas were generated. All this came to nought because as a company we decided to not work with the old engine again, but the ideas remained.

Meanwhile the new engine is cranking out games and the code base for the new engine is steadily expanding. With this foundation projects that we did not consider possible a few years ago suddenly became doable. So when it came to decide which game to do after Hearts of Iron 3, there were these ideas sitting around for an expansion to Victoria. These ideas looked pretty cool but more was going to be needed. However, here was the kernel of what we believe is a great game. The rest is history.

Traditionally dev diaries usually include screenshots, but this one sadly doesn’t. For those of you who can’t be bothered to read long developer ego stroking posts and just want to look at the pictures here are some sprites. These are just a small selection of the final in game sprites; we will unveil more as we go through development.
 

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King

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I am not moved by your motivations. I want more. I demand more. And after 600 years of Swedish rule over Finland I am entitled to more. Next development diary better be about the game mechanics, or I WILL taunt you!

Well if we had known that we wouldn't of bothered with Dev Diaries this early.
 

King

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Poor King. Finally caved to the demands for a DD and brought the wrath of the Paradoxians upon himself :(

You got designer, King? Gratz :)

Co- with Johan or what?

Yeh, it is the same design team that brought you HoI3.
 

King

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King, how many DD's you expect to release? if you can say

All in about 25 or so, but we may think of other topics for Dev Diaries as we go along.
 

King

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King, given how you are designer on this one rather than Johan, can we expect a realistically-powered Sweden and a seccesionist Scotland that razes York, unifies the Celtic states with Glasgow as capital and develops time-travel within the timeframe of the game?

No, Glasgow will never be the Capital of Scotland.
 

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I take it from that post the rest is in though. Only fair given Sweden in the other games. Heaven forbid PI ever get a Polish lead designer ;)

pretty sure we still got time left to overpower Sweden with the current schedule.
 

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I take it from that post the rest is in though. Only fair given Sweden in the other games. Heaven forbid PI ever get a Polish lead designer ;)

Sweden will be powered correctly in Victoria.. not as in the EU-series where it was insanely underpowered.
 

King

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I had a bizarre dream last night in which I was a beta tester for Vicky2, and to my horror it was identical to vicky1 with a few tiny graphical changes... then doubly to my horror I got an email from PI saying I owed them €11.95... that, along with my postcount on this forum tells me I may be a tad obsessed with this game.

Oh no, we've been found out.

I am sad to announce that Victoria 2 has been cancelled, however Crusader Kings 2 is out next week.
 

King

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Did the "why" of Vicky 2 have anything to do with the pre-Mayhem announcement (wish) polls?

Thanks for this one, BTW!

it did help its case. However it didn't matter how many poles Victoria 2 won, we needed a good game we felt we could make to achieve this.
 

King

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So will all nations have custom sprites? or only the big nations and the rest will have generic regional ones, or something?

Lippe-Detmold is not going to have a custom sprite. For all you Lippe-Detmold fans out there I know you are going to be upset but hopefully there will still be something in the game for you. So short answer big countries get custom sprites then there will generic ones for various regions.
 

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Well good, I voted for HoI3 anyway. But I am looking forward to the game in a big way. Until then, your no doubt fabulous DDs will have to do.

As far as the sprites, will they perhaps change over time? Multi-level? I cannot imagine using them in the 1930s.

We are just going for single level sprites.
 

King

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Oh, nice sprites. I especially love the Swedish sprite, wearing the beautiful m/ä-uniform.

However, I think the uniform depicted is the m/1845. ?

The trousers should be blue. (White trousers were only used during the summer, so for most of the year trousers were blue)

The yellow "passepoil" around the edges of the jacket should be removed.

Could you pass this along to the Armé Museum here it Stockholm, as their uniforms are wrong too?
 

King

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Since my guess would be that they are much more provinces on this map then it is in Eu3 would that result in more german minors?

Next week we'll talk a bit about the Map.
 

King

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Well apparently you must've used an officer uniform as model for the sprite. A private's uniform doesn't not have passepoil. As you can see this is how a m/1845-coat for a private looks like:

BigImageContent.do


And officers uniforms don't have passepoil on the "bottom part" of the coat.

And concerning the trousers, I didn't say they were wrong, I said why it'd be better to use dark blue trousers instead.

I'll tell our 3D artist to only use private's uniforms in future.
 

King

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O goodie, because I know it sounds lame but I wouldn't have bought it until it was removed. I have serious OCD and seeing 999 instead of 1000 would have driven me bonkers.

I do love the sprites though, they look good. I assume with the ease of "fixing" the Clauswitz engine us fans of the small countries will be able to quickly add historical sprites to our liking?

yeh once you get the sprite in it is just simple task of editiing a few plain text files.
 

King

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King, is the sprite setup the same as EU3, i.e. every unit represented by the same sprite or will artillery, cavalry etc have separate sprites?

It is going to be like EU3 in that regard.
 

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Not that I even use them, but won't the old INF sprites look awkward in WW1 with new tech tank, airplane and BB sprites? Is it possible to revert the old INF sprites to perhaps HoI3 INF sprites in the 20th century?

It's not quite that simple. I have actually asked a programmer exactly this question and I got a lot technical stuff about shaders back.
 

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It's not quite that simple. I have actually asked a programmer exactly this question and I got a lot technical stuff about shaders back.

I havent checked in detail, but I think it might be quite doable with some texture changes by the modders.