Splendid: The Europa Universalis IV Demo Is Here

Cancel all plans. Paradox have just dropped the Europa Universalis IV demo on to Steam. They could have waited until the end of business hours on Friday, leaving it there as a pleasant treat for weary commuters to discover as they crack open the first beer of the weekend, or take the first sip of calm-inducing brewed leaves, but no. They have released the demo on a Thursday afternoon. Enjoy the next few hours, as the office walls close in and dreams of conquest swim through your mind. Enjoy dragging yourself to work tomorrow, leaving a world of possibilities behind. I love pre-release demos, even if the timing is cruel. Check below for demo details.

A good mix of nations are available, allowing EU III players to explore some of the new and updated systems:

In the demo version of Europa Universalis IV, players can take up the flag of one of four available nations, sampling the trade system as Venice, going to war as the Ottoman Empire, founding new colonies as Portugal, or engaging in shrewd diplomacy as Austria. Demo games will last for 28 in-game years and include an extensive tutorial and hint system. The demo will not include multiplayer capabilities, and please note that the abilities to save & load have been disabled.

Paradox also confirmed Steam Workshop support and cross-platform multiplayer.

…the battle for conquest will take shape exactly as players desire, thanks to support for Steam Workshop for game modifications, and cross-platform multiplayer which will allow rulers to clash with the rivals of their choice across Windows, Mac, and Linux. Both Workshop support and cross-platform play will be included at launch.

If you’ve never tried a grand strategy game in its multiplayer guise before, now is the time. I’ll help to set up some communities after launch.


  1. Canisa says:

    Hehe, my ‘weekend’ falls on Thursday and Friday, while I go to work on Saturday and Sunday. So this suits me just fine! Have fun, you regular-weekenders!

  2. Schaulustiger says:

    From the official site:

    Europa Universalis IV demo content
    – The Demo of the empire building game Europa Universalis IV allows you to play as one of the four nations below through 28 years of history.
    – All single player capabilities as well as an extensive tutorial and hint-system are included in this demo.
    – There are no multiplayer capabilities, and please note that the ability to save & load have been disabled.
    – English only and Windows only.

    Venice was a prominent Italian Free City and played an important role in Mediterranean trade. Their fleet was important for gaining dominance over the Mediterranean Sea and securing the spice trade from India. Venice is a good choice for playing the trading game and seizing trade opportunities in the Mediterranean.

    Warfare/The Ottoman Empire
    The Ottoman Empire was a major power up to its fall in 1922. The Ottomans dominated land from the Balkans to the Arabian Peninsula. In Europa Universalis IV they are a strong choice for playing a warmonger game because of their cheaper coring costs and powerful early troops.

    Portugal is a natural choice for exploring the colonization part of the game. The nation was important in the exploration of the coast of Africa and the New World. Portugal lies isolated in the western part of the Iberian Peninsula and lacks natural enemies. As long as they keep good relations with Castile they should be able to peacefully explore and colonize.

    Austria was a major power through the renaissance and up to World War I. The Habsburg family ruled Austria and controlled the Holy Roman Empire for a large part of its existence. Diplomacy is important for keeping the title of Holy Roman Emperor, as it is an elective title. Keeping good relations with the electors will greatly improve your chances of keeping the crown. Austria is a strong choice for a diplomatic game because of their inclination towards holding the title of Emperor.

    • Leb says:

      Saving & Loading? Does paradox not realize I’ll be up all night playing this anyways

      • Anthile says:

        28 years is nothing.

        • pakoito says:

          Betting my socks on a bug allowing to play forever. In CK2s demo you could pick anyone on the map :P

        • darkath says:

          28 years later, an outbreak of rabbid paradox infected citizens slowly gathers at the Paradox Headquarters in Sweden. Strife, survival and conflict ensue.

          • Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

            The slightly pungent assembly of gamers prepares to take over the entire world, but is undone at the last second by not being able to change the laws of succession because they haven’t been in power long enough.

          • bstard says:

            And on the age of 28: died of depression, explosive manure and a battle! (while reigning in some castle).

  3. James Allen says:

    You get Venice, Ottoman Empire, Portugal, or Austria for 28 years, no save/load.

    • varangian says:

      You also don’t get any hints from the look of it. Seems to be a feature of Paradox demos, although there’s a mention of hints at the start nothing actually appears. Had the same problem with a CK2 demo, was totally baffled, never having played a Paradox game before, and gave up on it. Eventually bought the full game (Steam sale) because RPS guys were always raving about it and promptly drowned in a sea of pop up hint panels which got me playing and enjoying it immensely.

      Even though I’m now more familiar with the Clausewitz engine there were things in EU4 I couldn’t figure out in a quick play last night. Diplomats, for instance. Got two of them free, presumably I should be able to send them off to lie to foreigners, but click on them, hover over them or whatever I couldn’t find a way to get them doing anything. A bit more effort making the demo more accessible would probably translate into future sales.

  4. BTAxis says:

    Looks like it’s still got that mechanic where an army can march for days and days, and then 1 day before they arrive you cancel their move order and they teleport back to their point of origin. I always thought that was really strange. Then again, I can’t think of any way I’d rather see it work.

    • Triplanetary says:

      Army movement may be baked in to the Clausewitz engine, given how similar/identical it is from one Clausewitz game to another.

      An alternative seems obvious enough: if you cancel a unit’s movement order, require it to backtrack for the exact amount of time that it was moving toward the other province in the first place. So if a unit’s moving for four days, and then you cancel the order, you have to wait four more days before it’s available in its original province again.

    • darkath says:

      I see how it could works, but that would be unnecessarily complex and won’t really bring anything to the game.
      The Triplanetary proposal has many flaws that need additional designs to make it work : how do you change the course, how do you attack an army in between provinces etc. this could work, but again, the complexity added is really not necessary.

      • razgon says:

        I wan to live in a world, where governments use the phrase “The Triplanetary proposal” – So awesome!

        • darkath says:

          I guess you can give Eve online a spin while waiting for that to happen IRL :p

  5. pakoito says:

    I just did the basic and advanced tutorial and the game just took a big info dump on my chest, I feel overwhelmed.

    Starting with the “training wheels” campaign with my dearest EspaƱa :D

  6. killias2 says:

    I’m tempted, but I know I’ll just be irritated when time runs out. Must.. wait.. until.. game.. released….
    *dies dramatically*

  7. TC-27 says:

    Great news I will be using the Demo to get to grips with the new mechanics and them jump straight into trying to rescure the Roman Empire from extinction on the 13th.

    With this and Rome 2 we are being spoilt.

  8. Triplanetary says:

    Well, I’ve already preordered the game (I know, I fell into their evil trap), so I don’t really need to be convinced.

    • Anders Wrist says:

      Me neither, but I tried the demo anyway, and it’s removed any shadow of doubt that might have lingered still.

    • Sakkura says:

      I still remember how terrible Hearts of Iron 3 was when it launched, so I did wait until after trying the demo. Then threw all my cash at Paradox. :3

  9. Joshua IX says:


  10. infernalmachine says:

    I am going on vacation to Germany and after that visiting family in England. I was really looking forward to playing this, but unfortunately I will be waiting a while before I can.

  11. stjuuv says:

    Can’t download the demo – steam freezes for a few seconds when I click the button, and then it resumes working normally but doesn’t download the demo. Did a quick google, and it seems this can happen with new demos sometimes. Anyone have a fix?

    • Triplanetary says:

      Yeah, the exact same thing happened yesterday when I was trying to download the SR4 demo. I just waited a few hours and tried again and it worked.

    • darkChozo says:

      Same happened to me for the SR4 demo thing. I restarted Steam and it worked, maybe try that?

    • stjuuv says:

      Restarting my computer did the trick. When I first started Steam today, it did a short update, and when I tried restarting Steam several times, then it didn’t seem to need to update any more, but after restarting my computer, it did a 97MB update and now I can download the EUIV demo as well.

  12. grechzoo says:

    Oh god the soundtrack……it’s hugging my soul each time I boot up the demo.

  13. Biaxident says:

    Possible to play any country:

    1) Pick one of playable nations, for example VEN (Venice). (And, for example, MOS (Muscowy) as playable one.)
    2) Go to \Europa Universalis IV Demo\common\countries
    3) Rename “Venice.txt” to “Muscowy.txt” and “Muscowy.txt” to “Venice.txt”
    4) Open \Europa Universalis IV Demo\common\country_tags0_countries.txt
    5) Change tag allocation to VEN = “countries/Muscowy.txt” and MOS = “countries/Venice.txt”

    All credit to smart guy on Russian forums (electromagic) – via DamianGrim on Paradox forums.

  14. utharda says:

    Goddamnit paradox, if I wanted to boot into windows I would.
    Fredrik Wester, I am disappoint.

  15. utharda says:

    Booting into windows, pray for my heathen soul.

  16. tormos says:

    besmirched my sacred honor by pre-ordering this game. Please help me cleanse myself, RPS

  17. BlitzThose says:

    that Europa Universalis IV trailer that was getting spammed to death before all the developer sessions at rezzed was really fucking annoying