Is Victoria III The New Half Life 3? When Will It Be Released?
Over at the recently concluded PDXCON 2018, there was a question that consistently popped up during QA session with Paradox Interactive developers. So when is Victoria III releasing? Paradox kept joking that they put all their lead devs on the Victoria III project... but seriously... when is it releasing.
To understand why people clamour for Victoria III (or maybe it's just the Paradox fans... like me), we need to understand what made Victoria II so special. It wasn't a best-selling title for Paradox... by a far margin. It wasn't the best-reviewed Paradox game.
It was, however, Paradox Interactive's most ambitious title... perhaps to date. The first Victoria game was recognised as the most complex strategy game created by the studio. Victoria II sought to extend that complexity but also streamline the User Interface to make it a lot more manageable and reduced the steep learning curve.
Beginning in 1834, right at the cusp of the industrial revolution, the world witnesses massive changes in technology and the quality of life of its people (at least some of them). New ideas spread and a new sense of optimism flourished during the Victorian era.
Unlike other Paradox grand strategy titles, Victoria II was centred around the population of the countries and politics. The movement of your population, geographically and across class as they get educated and enlightened. And as you guessed, this can lead to revolutions and revolts to the old ways.
Imagine for a nation like England, simulating over 30 million people across the continents and its colonies. A staggering fact considering each population has their own beliefs, needs and ideologies.
As the needs of your pops were fulfilled and they got wealthier, pops would move up the hierarchy of class. And as they moved up, became wealthier, they became more conscious politically and became a lot more troublesome.
It wasn't just the simulation of the world's population that was immense. Victoria II had an insanely complex simulation of a world market. All the goods produced in all the countries had a global price that was calculated by the supply and demand.
This system is connected to your army as certain goods produced was required for your armies' supply. Running out of supplies would be bad news for your army and economy.
Victoria II challenged you to manage its complex economy and set the policies of the government. Do you placate the masses and anger the capitalist and aristocrats? Or do you continue a policy of favouring the rich? How do you approach turning an agrarian society into an industrialised one? These questions require some real long-term thinking and deliberation.
This is why Paradox fans want Victoria III. We want the same complexities of economics and societal movements. We want to see Paradox attempt to give the Victoria series the Europa Universalis IV treatment.
Improve upon the previous mechanics, streamline the user interface and make it easier to pick up and play. In essence, continuing to have the strategic depth while allowing more people to understand, play and enjoy it.
I don't know if Paradox is actually working on Victoria III or has a release date in mind for this elusive title. But considering the recently announced Imperator Rome which seems to be introducing some rather interesting ideas itself, I'm going to assume we won't be hearing about a Victoria III for another year at least. Please prove me wrong on this Paradox!
Paradox are doing a lot of cool new things with the engine in Imperator Rome and it's visual fidelity is getting closer to the Total War games... rather than the stylistic map like look (which is still there when zoomed out). Imperator could be the new improved engine that all newer Paradox games will be based on.
Which is why Victoria III might take a while. I know it will be out eventually (I wish I got a dollar every time someone said the same about Half Life 3), but till then, we can merely talk about the perfect Victoria III that we would all love.
So have you played Victoria II? What do you think of it?
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