Posts Tagged ‘Paradox Development Studio’

Stellaris launches Utopia expansion and Banks update

Today’s a big day for Stellaris [official site], as developers Paradox have launched its first proper expansion and a big game-changing patch. Headline features for the Utopia expansion include space habitats, dreadful new forms of enslaving and purging species, and ‘ascension perks’ to customise and shape species towards mechanical, biological, or psionic final forms. Update 1.5 (nicknamed Banks), meanwhile, reworks the government system, adds a civics system to make empires more unique, improves AI, fixes bugs, adds technologies, and changes plenty more. Exciting times in space. Read the rest of this entry »

Wot I Think: Crusader Kings 2 – Monks and Mystics

I’ve been hanging around with a bad crowd, staying up all night, attending weird orgies and torturing rivals until they embrace the teachings of Lucifer. Last night I ate my cousin because the Devil told me to do it. Crusader Kings 2 [official site] has always had a bit of a dark side, but with the new Monks and Mystics DLC, it’s been cranked up to 666.

Ostensibly, Monks and Mystics is all about opening up new roleplaying possibilities in regards to faith. You can join a variety of societies, including monastic orders, secret organisations and devilish cults. These sects offer new ways to interact with the religious side of medieval society and for the adventurous can offer strange powers, forbidden knowledge, and the ability to champion heretical religions. Guess which path I followed?

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Cult hit: Crusader Kings 2’s Monks & Mystics DLC is out

Cults and orders of assassins, satananiacs, Hermetics, monks, and more are now roaming the historical simulation of Crusader Kings 2 [official site], if you buy the latest expansion anyway. Paradox today launched Monks and Mystics, which boshes in secret (and not-so secret) orders who reward loyalty with handy abilities, pops in holy relics and masterwork weapons, and more. In short, yes, you can sacrifice people in Lucifer’s name and try to summon a familiar.

As is the Paradox way, also out today is a big new update free for all players. It brings new features, useful changes, welcome fixes, and things that, y’know, sound funny. Sadly, the endless carousing has ended. Read the rest of this entry »

Europa Universalis IV looks east with Mandate Of Heaven

Space is getting grander and more interesting thanks to the Utopia dlc for Stellaris, and Crusader Kings II is receiving a rabble of Monks and Mystics next week, but Europa Universalis IV [official site] hasn’t been left out. A tenth expansion is coming. It’s called Mandate Of Heaven and it adds an objective system based around semi-dynamic ages (from Discovery to Revolutions) to the world while introducing new mechanics for the Empire of China, daimyos and Shogunate of Japan, and Manchu. Read the rest of this entry »

Stellaris: Utopia expansion blasting off on April 6th

The first proper expansion for Stellaris [official site] will launch on April 6th, Paradox announced today. Utopia adds shiny futuristic features like buildable Dyson spheres, ring worlds, and habitat stations (very utopian), psionic, biological, and mechanical ‘Ascension’ paths (also utopian), and a variety of new ways to oppress and enslave other races (very… Omelasian). Well, utopias are always meant to be rhetorical, aren’t they? While Utopia is a paid expansion, the big update ‘Banks’ will launch for free alongside it with a load of handy new features. Read the rest of this entry »

Stellaris’ New Horizons mod is the best Star Trek game

Everything was in place for the Romulan invasion of the United Federation of Planets. Warbirds screeched out of the shipyards of Romulus and Remus on a direct course for the closest Federation worlds, those belonging to the chilly Andorians. The real goal, of course, was neighbouring Vulcan. This was a symbolic war.

As my jade vessels bombarded the frozen Andorian homeworld, the Tal Shiar informed me that yet another Federation ship had been successfully sabotaged. When my Reman shock troops’ boots hit the icy ground, I realised that Star Trek: New Horizons, a Stellaris [official site] mod, was my favourite ever Roddenbery-flavoured game.

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On its fifth anniversary, a toast to the humour and humanity of Crusader Kings 2

Today, on the Big Love Day of Victor Von Valentine, Crusader Kings 2 [official site] celebrates its fifth anniversary. I’m celebrating too because though I love many games, this one has a special place in my heart. I’ve written about its brilliance before but today I wanted to focus on an aspect that deserves more attention, and that’s the way that the game functions as a period piece. With Chaucer and Monty Python as company, I’ve been thinking about the filth, humour and humanity of this grandest of grand strategy games. And the importance of farts.

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Stellaris: Utopia expansion to blast off with Banks update

Having previously launched a few DLCdribs and DLCdrabs into Stellaris [official site], Paradox today announced Utopia, the first “major expansion” for their space strategy game. It will introduce Dyson spheres and ring worlds, let starlords shape their empire’s future form such as going cybernetic or reaching a higher plane of existence, and more.

As is customary with Paradox strategy expansions, Utopia will be accompanied by a free update with important new features of its own. Changes in update 1.5, nicknamed ‘Banks’, will include expanding species rights, reworking ethics, and adding refugees. Read the rest of this entry »

Wot I Think: Hearts Of Iron IV – Together For Victory

Playing any nation in Hearts of Iron IV [official site] beyond the big players, like Great Britain or Germany, is a lot like sitting at the kid’s table. The pace is slow, there are less complex decisions to make, and it never feels like anything that’s going on is nearly as important as what’s happening at the adult’s lavish banquet table. They’re dragging the world into a global war while you’re wondering if you’ve been completely forgotten.

Together for Victory promises to change that, at least for the Commonwealth countries: Canada, Australia, South Africa, India and New Zealand. The expansion gives these five nations a serious makeover, and they now sport unique national focus trees, historical and speculative events, and more freedom even while they remain stuck to Britain.

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Hearts of Iron IV deploys first expansion, big patch

Hearts of Iron IV [official site] has today launched its first expansion, Together for Victory, but just as importantly has released a big patch fixing a lot. While the expansion focuses on the British Dominions and Commonwealth and introduces an autonomy system, while the update in theory does a fair bit to improve the AI. Some players are reporting the game has started crashing for them but, for now, a workaround is helping with that. Read the rest of this entry »

Hearts of Iron 4: Together for Victory invading next week

The first expansion for Hearts of Iron 4 [official site] will hit next Thursday, December 15th, developers Paradox announced today. ‘Together for Victory’ focuses on the British Dominions and Commonwealth states, making them more unique and interesting with new alternate histories, new unique art, new National Focuses and so on. The base game is a bit lacking so it’ll be interesting to see what direction Paradox are taking it in with expansions. Read the rest of this entry »

Crusader Kings II Monks and Mystics: The joy of sects

What is Crusader Kings II [official site] missing? I’ve been playing again recently, drawn back in by The Reaper’s Due and its perfect simulation of the general snotty sickness of an English winter. I’d never have thought of disease as such an important addition, which is a bit silly really considering the historical impact of the Black Death, and the fact that entire military campaigns could be undone by infection and illness. Disease is important.

So too are religious societies and cults, and that’s what the next expansion, Monks and Mystics, will bring. Read the rest of this entry »

Stellaris sends love letter in new story by Alexis Kennedy

“I love you” means different things when said to your cat, your parent, your emperor, someone who’s just sat next to you on the night bus, and a pint mug of foaming warm advocaat. What does love mean when it’s declared by an unknown entity in the depths of space? Ah. Maybe it’s best not to find out. But if you’re spacecurious or a spaceromantic at heart and you play Stellaris [official site], you can now get loved-up with a free new story update written by Failbetter co-founder Alexis Kennedy. Read the rest of this entry »

Together For Victory: Hearts Of Iron IV’s First Expansion

As the remains of the British Empire crumble into the sea, here comes the first Hearts of Iron IV [official site] expansion to, er, in Paradox’s words, “[shine] a bright light on the British dominions and colonies that rallied around the flag in England’s darkest hour.” Hash tag topical. Hash tag good luck with that now pal. Mash tag two veggie sausages and beans, thanks. Paradox don’t say when Together for Victory will come out or how much it’ll cost but hey, they have whipped together a wee trailer to set the mood: Read the rest of this entry »

Wish Upon A Stellaris: Banks, Kennedy, And Beyond

Our Adam had a look at the state of Stellaris [official site] after Paradox released the most-recent update and paid add-on for their space strategy game. He called those “an indication that the studio have ideas as to how the universe can become more lively, without making it more cluttered at the same time, and that makes the future of Stellaris very exciting indeed.” And what of that future? Paradox have shared some of their plans and hopes for the future, which include fleshing out the mid- and late-game, adding a “space UN”, expanding ethics, and making empires more interesting and alive. Read the rest of this entry »

Wot I Think: Stellaris – Leviathans

Space dragons, wars in heaven, awakening gods, secret enclaves and (most delicious of all) user interface improvements. Stellaris: Leviathans [official site] brings some gargantuan beasts and big features to Paradox’s sci-fi strategy game, but is it a small step forward or a great leap into the unknown?

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Get Kraken, Lads: Stellaris Gets V1.3, Leviathans DLC

Today’s a big day for Stellaris [official site] as Paradox’s spacefaring grand strategy game receives both the long-awaited patch codenamed ‘Heinlein’ and its meatiest add-on yet, the Leviathans Story Pack. But wait! If you’re stuck into a game from the last patch, do be aware that update 1.3 will not work with your save file. Paradox do handily have a way to get back that old version, if you desperately want to polish it off before moving on. But if not, coo ‘eck let’s look at all that’s new today. Read the rest of this entry »

Europa Universalis IV Launches New Expansion; Crusader Kings II Rewards Cannibals

A new Europa Universalis IV [official site] expansion, named Rights of Man, is out today. This means that people who pay £15 can play with expanded diplomatic options as a Great Power. As is the traditional Paradox grand strategy way, a big update has launched alongside this expansion with fixes and additions for all.

Look, if I sound half-hearted, it’s because I’m reading the notes for a Crusader Kings II patch Paradox also released today, and that has the lot: cats, fraudulent mystics, and cannibals finding human heads in their beds. EU4 is a let-down on the japery front.

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Stellaris Leviathans DLC & Heinlein Patch Due Oct 20th

Strange and giant space nasties are coming to Stellaris [official site] in the Leviathans paid expansion, which Paradox today announced will launch on October 20th. Players will get to fight a space dragon for its horde, encounter a mysterious sphere, meet something which lives inside a sun, and so on – the usual stuff.

Just as important – perhaps more so? – is the free update hitting the 4X strategy game alongside the expansion. Codenamed Heinlein (after the sci-fi author, as is Paradox’s way), it will add or overhaul features from auto-explore to sector governors.

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Hearts Of Iron IV Drops The Bomb (A New Patch)

Like Fred Durst and the Nazi war machine, Hearts of Iron IV [official site] patches keep rollin’ rollin’ rollin’. Paradox today launched Patch 1.2, codenamed Sunflower, which focuses on improving the WW2 grand strategy game’s AI and user interface but also fiddles with balance and… history? That doesn’t seem safe.

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