Paradox Development Studio has announced ambitious DLC for Crusader Kings II which will convert your saves from the medieval, Eurocentric sandbox into a playable mod for the upcoming, globe-spanning Renaissance simulator, Europa Universalis IV . Yes, this means that you could potentially play the same faction through over 950 years of alternate history, from CK2: The Old Gods' start date in 867 A.D. to the end point of EU4 in 1821 A.D. I had a chance to grill Henrik Hansson, a programmer who worked on the DLC, on the specifics.
For a broad overview of the converter, you can check out Paradox's livestream demo from yesterday .
PCG: What are some Crusader Kings II realms that will have interesting Idea Tracks when you import them into in Europa Universalis IV?
Henrik Hansson, programmer: Some of them can be counted as secret, as we want the player to explore the game and find out But you can expect that major special nations like the Roman Empire will get their unique ideas. Crusader Kings II also have some special nations that also get some personal unique ideas like the Jomsvikings. It's up to the player to find them all.
Can you tell us a little about the unique Idea Tracks for the Jomsvikings and the Roman Empire?
The ideas are tied into the nations history mostly. Now, the Jomsvikings and the Roman Empire did not survive to 1444, so we had to get a bit creative when making them. So if we take the Jomsvikings for an example, their ideas are very much centered on the honor of being part of the brotherhood and how they are the best of the best soldiers the North can give. The names of their ideas are: The Jomsvikings Code, Legend of Jomsborg, For Glory of the Allfather, In the Name of Thor, Adopt Feudal System, and Implement the Högting.
You mentioned that reformed pagan religions from The Old Gods will transfer over to EU4, while unreformed will just be lumped in with the generic Animist/Shamanist. Are the imported religions cookie-cutter, or do they have variance? Zoroastrian versus reformed Norse, for example.
The religions do have variance between them with having different modifiers, icons and such. The converter also treats rulers differently based on their religion. They are not as well-fleshed out as the original religions in Europa Universalis IV with their own events, their own mechanics and such. They will though be able to put up a fight against the major religions if they have managed to survive to Europa Universalis IV.
What kind of bonuses does the Reformed Norse religion get? What about the other reformed pagans?
The Norse Reformed Faith gets increased force limits to represent how they are in the Crusader Kings II game. All other religions get something similar that will represent something from the Crusader Kings II game.
The Norse Fylkirate as a title—how does it convert to EUIV?
At the moment it is not converted, but I am trying to come up with a good way to do this so the player is rewarded for his achievement.
Are there any unique cultural units for the importable CK2 cultures that don't exist in vanilla EUIV?
At the moment, no, that isn't planned.
Can you form the Holy Roman Empire in an imported game of Europa Universalis IV if it didn't exist in the exported Cruader Kings II game?
There is no way to form the empire in Europa Universalis IV, it will have to be done in Crusader Kings II first.
How does the converter decide which Europa Universalis IV tech group to stick you in?
Various factors decide what tech group you are in. For instance Muslims get the Muslim tech group, but if they conquer large parts of Europe they will become the Ottoman tech group. If you are Ottoman in Crusader Kings II, then of course you will get the Ottoman tech group. Then you have the pagans. They will become Eastern unless you manage to do large technological advancements before the game is converted.
How does the converter decide what government type to give you?
It is kind of the same as with the tech groups, various factors. Most of the time they will get Feudal Monarchy, but Merchant Republics will become Merchant Republics, the Mongol horde will stay a Mongol horde, the Empires will be Empires and Holy Orders will be Theocracies.
How is the world outside of Crusader Kings II's boundaries generated? Does it default to the standard EU4 1444 set-up?
It depends. Most of the time, yes, it will probably be the default. But there are some special events in Crusader Kings II that changes this...
Other than the Mongols, what stuff from Crusader Kings II "spills out" onto the larger EU4 map? Is there a hard boundary to how far it can spill?
There are the Timurids who can start to invade [in CK2's late game]. They start with some provinces outside of visible Europe. These two will be joined together. The same for the Golden Horde.
Are heresies for each Crusader Kings II religion converted over? If my entire Persian empire was Manichean, or I had an Iconoclast ERE, does that transfer?
The religion system in Europa Universalis IV is totally different from Crusader Kings II, where each heresy is its own proper religion. Europa Universalis IV doesn't support that, so unfortunately, you will get the parent religion after conversion.
Do converted cultures and religions get any unique CBs in EUIV?
Does Muslim decadence carry over in any way?
Do claims transfer over?
Some of the claims do transfer over, yes.
Can West/East Francia ever become France and Germany, or are they stuck with those names if they exist at the time the Crusader Kings II save was exported?
They will be stuck as West/East Francia in Europa Universalis IV.
You mentioned that if a realm has Minimum Crown Authority in CK2, the direct vassals will spawn as independent relams with vassalage contracts to their liege in EU4. How is multi-tiered vassalage handled? Is only the first level of vassals under each ruler relevant?
Only the direct vassals of the ruler are considered. But for Holy Roman Empire, every level of vassals is considered to take full advantage of the HRE mechanics in Europa Universalis IV.
You mentioned that importing a game with the CK2 Sunset Invasion DLC will spawn a huge Aztec Empire in North America. What flags a Crusader Kings II save as a "Sunset Invasion universe" game? Is it just having the mod checked when you export the save, or does the event actually have to fire?
Just have to have the DLC loaded when exporting!
How far ahead is the Aztec/Inca alternate history tech group in an imported Sunset Invasion game? Do they get new ideas separate from the historical Inca/Aztecs?
This is one of the things we want people to play and find out.
Do the other fictional North American states mentioned in Sunset Invasion exist in an imported game? Like, could I play as the Aztecs, and have a rebellion to restore the Shoshone/Iriquois free states? Would they then be part of the super Aztec/Inca tech group?
Are there any plans to port Europa Universalis IV saves forward to Paradox Development Studio games set later down the timeline?
Not at the moment. One step at a time.
Thanks to Henrik for clearing up these details for us. Watch for more on Europa Universalis IV and the save game converter in the coming weeks.