Crusader Kings 2’s Game Of Thrones Mod Hits 1.0

Crusader Kings 2 [official site] is a grand strategy game about human beings instead of armies, and it spins gripping Shakespearean yarns about medieval social climbing, full of murder, betrayal and bastards. It’s brilliant, but you might be a little intimidated by its setting. That’s just one of the reasons why the Game of Thrones mod is so good – and it’s just hit version 1.0.

The Game of Thrones mod switches the game’s real world setting for Westeros, and switches out its nobles and royals for the nobles and royals of the Song of Ice and Fire novels. That means you can take control of Ned Stark and try to survive, or any of the more minor characters in any of the series’ houses of assholes.

It’s been a great, polished mod for a while, but version 1.0 brings finishes “integration of World of Ice and Fire” material, improves the White Walkers and otherwise rounds off the package. It doesn’t necessarily mean the end of development, but it’s everything the developers wanted to have in for a 1.0 release. There’s a full changelog at that link above.

Thanks, PC Gamer.

16 Comments

  1. McCool says:

    I can’t really think of a worse reason to play this as opposed to “vanilla” CK II than “I find real history intimidating and prefer fantasy dragon worlds”. One of the best things about CK II (and other Grand Strategy games is how it teaches you geography and (basic) history as you go along!

    The best reason to play this mod may in fact the huge amount of new gameplay features and nuances the team have added in, it’s actually a much more varied and complex game than what Paradox offer in CK II proper. Even if you are not a big fan of GRRM’s silliness, there is a lot to love in this mod.

    I haven’t had much time to play it, but Elder Kings, the Elder Scrolls equivalent to this mod, recently hit a new landmark version release as well, another lovingly crafted total conversion mod.

    • Mortomes says:

      Finally a new Elder Kings? Why was I not informed of this? *downloads*

    • WhatAShamefulDisplay says:

      Absolutely agree 100%, both about the history and The Elder Kings, which is surprisingly excellent, especially in Morrowind and High Rock (although that might just be because those are the settings of my two favourite TES games!)

      Incidentally, for anyone looking to learn about history via Crusader Kings, England, France and the Christian parts of the Iberian peninsula circa 1066 are the places to be. The rest of the map really does abstract how feudalism works a stage too far to be credible, imho, and the earlier start dates are frankly a load of rushed guff, especially the one for Charlemagne.

    • mouton says:

      Additionally, it is the similarity to actual history and as well as faithfulness to its brutality that is one of the Song of Ice and Fire’s greatest strengths.

      • Captain Joyless says:

        Actually, I think that one of the worst elements of both SOIAF and CK2 are a reliance upon and perpetuation of false notions of “feudalism”, “vassalage”, “fealty”, etc, – none of which ever existed in any uniformed or idealized way, and certainly not across half the world (or even seven kingdoms).

        Both CK2 and ASOIAF take a 17th century view of 11-14th century English/French feudalism and then mash all 4 centuries together and apply it across all of Europe/”Westeros”. ASOIAF does make a single interesting notation of regional difference – Dorne has absolute cognatic succession (birth order determines inheritance regardless of gender) when in reality, variances were the rule, not the exception.

        CK2 makes this even worse by applying these rules to 9th and 10th century Europe. For example, the 9th century Frankish Empire under Charlemagne operates under “feudalism.” Despite the fact that counties weren’t hereditary under Charlemagne (or for hundreds of years later) and “count” wasn’t even a title associated with a large plot of land.

        CK2 boils down a lot of fascinating political struggles into fighting over rigidly defined “titles” and “de jure” areas, most of which never existed (the vast majority of CK2’s duchies never existed, for example).

        I could go on and on but suffice it to say that CK2 or ASOIAF are great as examples of how warped and limited people’s view of medieval history is.

        • TheOx129 says:

          Well, I distinctly recall Paradox at one point in a post-mortem for the vanilla release that they tried to implement more complex succession mechanics – notably the rota system of the Rus – but they ended up scrapping it for reasons I can’t recall off the top of my head.

          I do agree that it’d be nice to see more unique mechanics based on culture and religion and such (it doesn’t make much sense that explicitly anti-feudal heresies like the Paulicians and Bogomils would rule feudal states, for example), which is probably why it’s no coincidence that certain overhaul mods and total conversions make a point to focus on such issues. I do think that the introduction of “government types” with Horse Lords might open up the possibilities to abstract, for example, the very different ways an Anglo-Saxon England would be ruled when compared to a Norman one.

          While I love CK2, a part of me can’t wait until CK3, which would hopefully better be able to capture some of these nuances.

        • Shadow says:

          I suppose EU4 has similar issues, probably for the same reason. Paradox comes up with an array of game systems and then applies that same set of mechanics across the whole expanse of the game. Since the same systems are also largely applied across the whole world, they start developing expansions which flesh out more specific aspects of certain regions or periods.

          I can’t blame them for being unable to cover everything. Considering it were possible at all, it’d take dozens of expansions to cover the local nuances of every chunk of the planet and their variations across the centuries the game covers. It’d be somewhat easier to do in CK2’s context due to its reduced geographic scope, but still, merely down to immensely daunting from nigh-impossible.

    • TheOx129 says:

      Agreed. On that note, for those seeking an expanded vanilla experience, I recommend checking out CK2+ and Historical Immersion Project. They’re both general overhauls that have very different overall design goals, so I recommend playing both to see what fits better.

      Some highlights of the features of each:

      CK2+

      -Complete faction overhaul that, IMO, is what vanilla should have (essentially, there are a few permanent factions that represent certain interests in the state with moods that shift depending on your actions)
      -Greatly expanded religions and heresies, with associated mechanics (a recent update now has pre-Great Schism start dates with a unified “Chalcedonian” Christianity, with an event chain to represent the build up to the Schism, which you can avoid entirely if certain conditions are met; Manichaeism is sensibly a separate religion rather than a Zoroastrian heresy; Miaphysites were separated into Coptic Africans and Apostolic Armenians; etc.)
      -Coronation system, adventurers now venture from court to court petitioning rulers for support to press their claim, etc.

      HIP

      -Completely modular, so you can decide which parts of the overhaul you want
      -SWMH module is a complete map overhaul that some love, others hate. In any event, it is incredibly detailed (by default all titles are in their native languages)
      -Some very pretty (IMO) aesthetic modules

      Overall, I enjoy both, but I would generally describe HIP as more of a “Vanilla+” mod (without SWMH, at least), whereas CK2+ is a lot more open to significantly overhauling game mechanics.

  2. Cropduster says:

    I love how detailed and well realized this mod is, but I don’t find it a very interesting map to play on.

    In almost all start dates its a handful of similarly sized, giant states, lacking the diversity and asymmetry of the historical map. A limitation of the fiction I guess.

    Definitely an amazing project though and I’m glad to see it’s still kicking and updated.

    • Shadow says:

      Last time I played this mod, which was admittedly several months ago, I selected a little lord within one of the big blobs, and the world lacked plenty of life. Years could go by without anything interesting happening.

      Has that significantly changed by 1.0? CK2 is most interesting for the smaller rulers, the counts who need to scale up to a proper royal crown. They have a lot to lose but a lot to gain as well. Is it fun to play that kind of ascent in the GoT mod or is it simply recommended to stick to the high lords? CK2 gets flatter the more powerful you are and the more resources you have at your disposal…

      • HopeHubris says:

        I usually start off as a minor lord and try to work my way up to a Lord Paramount, before making a play for the throne.
        Enjoyable enough for me

  3. jgf1123 says:

    Byan’s low Diplomacy is going to cause him trouble down the road.

  4. Arglebargle says:

    Playing a GoT Mod game right now. My Tragaeryon is in deep trouble.

    But my favorite mod of them all is Lux Invicta, which is an alternate history setting of wild variance. It is designed to have every famous family and religious splinter group be still in existence, somewhere. It also sports small initial holdings, so it is quite possible to weld together a new Empire.

    My last foray led to a major Kushite Empire controlling all of Egypt, Arabia, the Levant, and Crete; along with the reform and restoration of proper Ancient Egyptian religious practices.

  5. NephilimNexus says:

    This mod is what made me buy CK2 in the first place.

  6. celticdr says:

    But do mods ever reach version 1.0?

    Wow, I just blew my own mind.