Old World, New World: EU IV – El Dorado

Europa Universalis IV’s [official site] fifth expansion will be released on February 26th. It adds automated land and sea exploration, with chained story events involving expeditions to the New World, as well as increased depth for Aztec, Mesoamerican and Incan cultures. Separate to those thematic expansions, there will also be a custom nation building tool, with RPG-style point allocation for national traits, leader stats and territorial possessions. There is also an option to begin with a randomised world, reminiscent of the Shattered World mod for CK II.

I spent an hour playing around with the expansion last week, most of which was spent poking at the nation builder and chortling at the ludicrous scenarios that the randomised world creates. Occasionally there’ll be a huge blob of a country staining Europe, or a mostly united Africa. It seems like an excellent addition for anyone who has played EU IV enough to learn the likely eventualities stemming from the historical starting point.

It’s hard to analyse the automated exploration and added depth in the nations of the Americas after a short burst of play. I tend to stick with the European nations but perhaps the expansion will change that. El Dorado doesn’t seem as extensive as The Art of War, which is fine – there’s room for smaller additions as well as overhauled mechanics – but unless you’re looking for new challenges, this might not be an essential slice of strategy.


  1. toshiro says:

    I really like an added RPG-element. I can’t be bothered with CKII, simply because it overwhelms me in a way I find unsettling, while recognizing that there most likely is a gem there the amount of time it requires of me is just not appealing. EUIV on the other hand, is much more straight forward and from the get-go I was indulged in the nation building. A bit more of CKII in EUIV and maybe it will be the perfect game for me.

  2. Joshua Northey says:

    The automated exploration might get me to pick this up again. I always found the exploring/colonizing ground my games to a slow halt, and I hate to play non-optimally just because playing optimally is boring.

  3. teije says:

    Two best changes in this – automated exploration – exploration has been mind-numbingly boring to date – and custom nations – really creates unlimited replayability for EUIV. Looking forward to this.