It took more than a decade for Paradox Interactive to announce a follow-up (opens in new tab) to its epic 19th century grand strategy game Victoria 2, but it won't take much more than a year to get from there to release: Paradox dropped a new Victoria 3 (opens in new tab) trailer today showing off some gameplay and—this is the important bit—revealing that it will launch on Steam on October 25.
This is a big deal for Paradox fans, for whom Victoria 3 was a bit like Half-Life 3: A much-demanded sequel that seemed like it would never actually happen. As with so many things online, the long wait took on a life of its own as a meme, which Paradox leaned into with a meme contest (opens in new tab) shortly after Victoria 3 was launched.
That's not the only big bit of society simulator news to arrive today. We've also got our first gameplay preview (opens in new tab) and, while Victoria 3 is still a couple months away from full release, calling our initial impressions "promising" seems like a vast undersell.
"Victoria 3 is a breathtakingly ambitious simulation unlike anything that's come before," our previewer wrote. "There are some places where it becomes cumbersome due to the complexity of all the moving parts, particularly when it comes to the economy. But I could hardly drag myself away to do anything else for the 10 days I got to play it."
And honestly, are you even really playing a Paradox sim if the complexity doesn't get cumbersome now and then?
Victoria 3 is available for pre-purchase now on Steam (opens in new tab) for $50/£42/€50, or a little bit more for the Grand Edition, which includes various bits of additional content including the first expansion. Preordering either edition will also get you a copy of the remastered Victoria 2 soundtrack, which as preorder bonuses go is actually pretty cool.