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It's grand strat-a-day: Crusader Kings II and EU IV both expand today

Journeys to the East

With this week's release of Star Wars: Battlecrate 2 marking the end of big, noisy shooter silly season, there's a whole lot more breathing space for a wider variety of games. Case in point, a double-whammy of DLC for Paradox's grand strategy heaviest-hitters, Crusader Kings II and Europa Universalis IV.

Big add-ons for both have landed today, with CK2: Jade Dragon putting China front'n'centre, and EUIV: Cradle of Civilization looking at the state of the Middle East and Asia during the early modern era.

Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon Steam is superficially the more colourful offering, as it's heavily focused on the Chinese empire specifically, including making you worry about the inevitably capricious whims of its Emperor. However, one thing Jade Dragon does not do is actually make China part of the playable map. Instead, they are an external force to manage. I.e. mostly it's new menus, which is a bit of a shame. Then again, depth rather than flash is forever the lure of CK2.

However, one thing that is happening is making Tibet a playable region - and that's true for every CK2 owner, whether they stump up for Jade Dragon or not. Today's 2.8.0 update adds all sorts of new and changed features to the base game, as detailed here.

Here's yon trailer:

Cover image for YouTube video

That's out now, for ">£10.99/14,99€/$14.99.

Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization is also out now, but costing a little more at ">£14.99/19,99€/$19.99. It does seem to a be broader and larger add-on than Jade Dragon, folding all sorts of Middle Eastern and Asian elements into the game, including new types of government, policies and schools.

Even better news is that it's also accompanied by a no-pennies patch for the base game, which includes a new map with a few extra nations along with a glut of tweaks. Full details on the 1.23 'Persia Update' are here.

Arguably less better news is that there is DLC for the DLC for this one, with just over a fiver buying you assorted new cosmetic bits and bobs for Cradle of Civilization.

Anyway, trailer time:

Cover image for YouTube video

Again, both of those are out now. If this is your first time on the Paradox grand strategy merry-go-round and you want to go big or go home, the 'dox also sell a bundle containing both base games and both new expansions, for roughly 10% less than buying them individually.

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Crusader Kings II

PC, Mac

Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon

Video Game

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Alec Meer avatar

Alec Meer


Ancient co-founder of RPS. Long gone. Now mostly writes for rather than about video games.