Crusader Kings II Is Getting A Poxy, Plaguey Expansion

We all get sick every once in a while. When certain unnameable stars are ascendant and the pollen count is high, the writers of RPS are stricken with a variety of ailments ranging from the mildly irritating Wheezing Calamities to the truly dreadful Kneecaps-A-Shudder that causes the sound of grinding bones to echo around our word-cubicles, day and night. We have a proud record of ‘zero plagues’ in 2016 though and that’s something to celebrate.

Crusader Kings II [official site] is set in more sickly times though and the next expansion to the bestest of all historical strategy games will explore illness, death and all that other good stuff.

I feel a little bit ill just having listened to that.

Here’s what to expect from The Reaper’s Due:

Epidemics: Diseases may spread from province to province along trade and sea lanes, lowering your income and available soldiers

Prosperity and Royal Focus: Well managed provinces in peaceful kingdoms will pay huge dividends in gold and manpower

Hospitals and Royal Physicians: Prevent the outbreak of disease in your kingdom, and make sure your courtiers have access to the latest in Dark Ages Medical Science

Royal Seclusion: Shield yourself from the diseases tearing your kingdom apart, even if it means ignoring the plight of your people

New Event Chains: Is the new epidemic the End of Days? Is there someone else to blame for these horrors? Are there supernatural origins or solutions to the world’s problems?

I may be wrong but it sounds like I might be able to recreate the Masque of the Red Death by locking my family away inside a safe place and then discovering that some supernatural agency is going to drag my soul out of the lesions on my royal sceptre anyhow. Jolly good.


  1. int says:

    Die! Die! Die!

  2. Captain Narol says:

    Good moment to mention the recent release of an interesting mod for CKII :

    “A.D. 633 : Rise of Islam”

    link to

    It’s giving us an interesting new start date, with a still fully zoroastrian Persia, an islamic faith still only present in Arabia yet but ready to grow to empire level, some germanic pagan kingdoms in england and a few remnant of the hellenic religion here and there…

    Haven’t had the time to give it a try yet but looks well done and promising !

  3. anHorse says:

    Well Conclave kinda ruined the game, so I hope they rectify that

    • yusefsmith says:

      Conclave didn’t ‘kind of ruin the game’. That’s an awfully big claim to make.

      • thetruegentleman says:

        Yes, it really did: Coalitions were an incredibly bad idea, an EU4 feature forced into CR2 with little thought or planning, because the game already HAD a coalition system. It was called the @#$^&%* CRUSADES! The thing with the name on the bloody box! Why the hell are the Muslim, Christian, and Pagan kingdoms all allying together, something with no precedent from the time period?

        Oh yes, and I’m also happy about spending even MORE time fighting my vassals for contrived reasons. That’s really just lovely, exactly what the game needed: to be more bogged down.

        • Captain Narol says:

          No it didn’t, it just ruined YOUR way to play the game.

          That was a mistake from the devs anyway as people were used to play CKII the way they liked and they kinda admitted it as they plan to introduce with the free update coming with the extension a full menu of parameters allowing you to allow/disable a lot of the unpopular features added in conclave or before, including coalitions and shattered retreats !

          So rejoice, the game will be “un-ruined” for you !

          • Captain Narol says:

            In case I am unclear, this incoming “fix” has been explained in this dev diary (rightly titled “The rules of the game”) :

            link to

          • thetruegentleman says:

            Disabling achievements for disabling coalitions is incredibly petty: they know it was a bad, poorly implemented idea, but they refuse to concede the point.

            And it didn’t just ruin “my” way of playing the game: if it were, Paradox wouldn’t have felt the need to lock the thread they posted to defend coalitions.

          • Premium User Badge

            Malarious says:

            Oh god, are you the guy from the ParadoxPlaza subreddit that posts this same thing about coalitions ruining the game on every CK2 post?

            I have literally never seen anyone get so upset over a balance change before. Coalitions make sense, they work well, and Conclave made CK2 more interesting.

        • Admiral Snackbar says:

          I think blobbing was too easy prior to Conclave, do you think it was too easy?

      • Cropduster says:

        I wouldn’t say ‘ruined’, but it’s definitely a little ott. I can see why they want to limit (or at least systemise) expansion, but the current threat system is so punishing, and also a little immersion breaking.

        It feels very silly when the entire continent gangs up on you, very gamey (and very un-ck2).

        Still having fun with it though, I love the new council/law stuff.

  4. darkath says:

    Worth noting that the devs told us on the forums there will be only 2 or 3 expansions left for CK2, as the engine/code is getting pretty old and it’s becoming tougher balance between optimization and new features. They also won’t try to expand the map further, focusing on Roleplaying/immersion features and Quality of life improvement.

    • Baines says:

      It’s about time. The longer they delayed creating a Crusader Kings 3, the harder they made it to make that jump, and the worse they’ve made the reception it will receive. (Because CK3 will launch with only a tiny fraction of the content that CK2 currently has.)

      Now if only they’ll spend plenty of time planning out a CK3.

      • darkath says:

        They might do for CK3 what they did with EU4.
        They launched EU4 with all the content of EU3 and more, and overhauled the engine, added new features and the like. From day 1 EU4 was vastly superior to EU3, recycled all the work that had been put into it, and shipped almost bug free. That was quite a achievement for PDX and a key to the success of the title.

        I don’t think in the future CK3 will ship with 100% of the CK2 content, as it’s gigantic, they might cut india for instance, as it’s a ressource hog that add very little to the game.
        But they will almost certainly not reboot the game and its features. That would be wasting years of work, and unparadoxical.

  5. Grizzly says:

    Okay, this is the weirdest choice for trailer music.

  6. wombat191 says:

    curiously my house sounds like that trailer video at the moment with everyone sick.

    sounds like a good expansion, im always after more stuff for this deep game

  7. DavishBliff says:

    I haven’t played nearly as much CKII as I have EUIV so maybe this is just how some of the expansions have gone, but it seems like an thing for an expansion to revolve around. From a gameplay standpoint, I don’t think there would be that many interesting choices to make in response to a disease outbreak. The bubonic/pneumonic plague just sort of spread all across Europe, with very few pockets unaffected, regardless of most efforts to contain it. Some areas were hit harder than others but that didn’t really have anything to do with decisions made by leaders. It had profound economic and social and cultural effects but CKII is really more focused on the political and dynastic plotting, no?

    • Cropduster says:

      It looks like they’re just adding a bit more depth to managing your provinces. CK2 is pretty shallow in that respect compared to EU4.

      Illness and epidemics are also a thing already it’s basicaly just overhaul time. Sounds decent to me, more stuff to tinker with in peace time can’t be bad (especially while waiting for threat to decrease lololol)

      • WaytoomanyUIDs says:

        And they can’t really do anything larger scale without causing the engine to implode. Still, as you say, more stuff for peacetime is overdue.

  8. Catchcart says:

    “The Reaper’s Due”. Jeez. No points for guessing what type of music these guys are into.