I'm starting to appreciate EU4's simplicity

I'm starting to appreciate EU4's simplicity

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Jarvin

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EU4 is a simple game. At the same time though, it's not simple to get to a point where you'd start considering EU4 a simple game subjectively.
Other "hard" strategy games like AoE2, SC2, among many others base their difficulty around adaptiveness, ie. your ability to intuitively respond to what the game or your opponent throws at you, and the way these games are structured that adaptiveness is similarly difficult for both newcomers and pro players alike.
EU4 has that aspect of responding to the game too, but it's based more on game knowledge than any particular 'skills'. It's significantly less circumstantial.


To this day I see tons of people who are probably struggling with the game because they have a wrong understanding of how a particular mechanic works, or they've been straight up misled by other members of the community(that ridiculous "Ideal army compositions" sheet is one of the worst perpetrators), and I get that from their perspective this game is difficult and very complex.
Once you get through that initial entry barrier you realize that far too many mechanics in EU4 are actually rather irrelevant or easily ommitable, and far too many decisions have an easy, objective answer that you just have to memorize.
That's not really the case with other "complex" strategy games. In EU4 the more you play the less complex the game becomes, in other games often the opposite applies.
 
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Deliberus

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Oof, that's some crappy army comps.

No cannons before tech 16? 8 Cav in late game? Infantry doesn't even match combat width sometimes? That's a pretty terrible document in that part
 

Jarvin

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Oof, that's some crappy army comps.

No cannons before tech 16? 8 Cav in late game? Infantry doesn't even match combat width sometimes? That's a pretty terrible document in that part
And note that no matter the day or the hour it has at least like 40 people viewing it at the same time
it's INSANELY popular
 
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Deliberus

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And note that no matter the day or the hour it has at least like 40 people viewing it at the same time
it's INSANELY popular
I don't blame the document but more so google pushing that thread to the top of search results. Admittedly I remember seeing something similar in a forum post but I was informed enough to discount it as outdated because of comments from others pointing out why. If only documents had comment sections :(
 
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Jorlaan

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Jarvin

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5000 hours later "Ah Finally, I can see the simplicity of eu4!"
It doesn't have to be 5000 hours. For most it takes thousand hours+ specifically because they lack any direction in how they "learn" the game.
Given a guided way of playing, and especially if you were to have someone you could ask questions, EU4 could easily require no more than 100-300 hours to get very good at.

This doesn't apply to other "hard" things in life. You wouldn't be able to easily "learn" to run a marathon in under 3 hours just by having a decent mindset and a good teacher.

The difficulty in EU4 doesn't come from the game itself being difficult, but from the obufscation of information.
 
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Ruian

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I kind of understand where OP is coming from. Once you get to a reasonable competency level the game is easy. Many players could click random nation and turn it into a WC no matter the result. But that's only because you don't push the boundaries further and stop developing skill and adaptation beyond the basic requirements of the game. There are a couple of achievements that can push you out of your comfort zone, like True Heir of Timur, Eat Your Greens or the Dahomey one. People have done THoT before 1500. You can't just autopilot your way to victory and every game will have different conditions that you need to adapt to.

I spent some hours working with someone else on how to get a -80% war score cost Qing horde to do a WC before 1550 on very hard. Then someone finished a WC by 1532 so I gave up on it. After that there was a Timurids formation strategy that would have put the finish date in the 1520s and I decided it was time to exit because the amount of variables to contend with was getting to be too much.

The game becomes a lot more complex when every single day of the calendar year is a day you pause on and reassess your entire country, a hundred different units, optimal build orders, optimal peace deals with 7 wars sitting on 100% all while having 500% overextension. The ultimate meta became pain tolerance to me. When you're losing 200 ducats per month by being 100 over force limit in 1480 on the edge of oblivion the game isn't simple or lacking strategy. You just aren't exploring what the game has to offer.

Performing actions that give stab hits aren't rules you can't break, they're suggestions.

But I know this thread is about playing some random nation on autopilot. I agree, it's easy, and if you follow the "rules" the game has taught you, you don't even need to pay attention.




The most complicated strategy game I've played is from 1994 using a mod that was just released as DLC in 2020. It's like civ on crack and makes my head hurt every time I play it. I can still only win on the 5th of 7 difficulties using what I would consider cheesy strategies.
 
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Lord Lorkan

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It doesn't have to be 5000 hours. For most it takes thousand hours+ specifically because they lack any direction in how they "learn" the game.
Given a guided way of playing, and especially if you were to have someone you could ask questions, EU4 could easily require no more than 100-300 hours to get very good at.

This doesn't apply to other "hard" things in life. You wouldn't be able to easily "learn" to run a marathon in under 3 hours just by having a decent mindset and a good teacher.

The difficulty in EU4 doesn't come from the game itself being difficult, but from the obufscation of information.
Yet other strategy games like civ,anno,total war,etc the majority of people learn the basics in 5 to 10 hours playing those game but eu4? Even with tutorials and guides people struggle to learn the basics in 100 to 200 hours for paradox games
 
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LWE

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But I know this thread is about playing some random nation on autopilot. I agree, it's easy, and if you follow the "rules" the game has taught you, you don't even need to pay attention.

The most complicated strategy game I've played is from 1994 using a mod that was just released as DLC in 2020. It's like civ on crack and makes my head hurt every time I play it. I can still only win on the 5th of 7 difficulties using what I would consider cheesy strategies.
Caster of Magic?

As for extreme challenges like Ryuku One Tag One Faith by 1445, yeah, that’s a different approach to the game. Although I don’t think there are many people capable of winning Civ4 Deity Always War on a random map, either. Probably a bit more.

I don’t think that EU basics are hard to learn, I did it in hours (granted, it was EU3 IN). I think it’s simply the seeming abundance of modifiers and things that seems daunting.
 
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coldbreeze

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I understand where you're coming from, OP.

EU4, in SP at least, is not so much a strategy game as a strategy sandbox, and the difficulty primarily comes from the goals that you set for yourself. If your goal is just becoming the most powerful country in the world, you can generally achieve that quite quickly depending on your EU4 experience, starting conditions and tolerance for tedium. To challenge themselves further players, player with very high tedium tolerance can try for more ambitious goals, but since the game does not have an actual win condition to try for and the tedium increases proportionally to the size of your nation, it often feels like there's very little reason to bother.
 
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blobdomp

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i.e. a very specific situation. But I'm honeslty curious about it. Could you elaborate?
netherlands and england when not rivals might embargo eachother since they share trade node. i agree it is rare since usually you will just rival them
 

Ololorium

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I wouldn't say that EU4 is simple. It's simple and relaxing for people like you or me, who have 1000+ hours invested in it, and it's simple if you don't try to minmax, because you don't have to have a deep understanding of all mechanics you can (ab)use to your advantage. EU4 is static, like a board game, but board games are not by themselves simple (chess, for example) if you want to be really good at them.
That said, some mechanics are really unclear and look very complex for no good reason (like trade), so they might give the impression "oh wow, this is so hard, how can I ever learn to juggle all these cool modifiers like trade efficiency and trade power and a dozen more", but when you realise it's mostly fire-and-forget system you can start thinking "oh, the trade might as well not exist, it's useless and not engaging at all!", while the fact is it's neither too hard nor too simple (but could be implemented much better).
 
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