Fortunately, Paradox Interactive has given a chance to justify running through another campaign of Europa Universalis Rome with the release of their first expansion pack, Vae Victis. So not only do we get to play one of our favorite strategy games from the year, but we also get to justify it as "work. The series simulates a wide range of political, military and economic interactions in real time on a truly global stage. The original games focused more on the Early Modern period of history, but the concept has been translated to the Middle Ages, the Age of Napoloen, World War II and a number of other eras. Earlier this year, the developers finally adapted the design to let players play through all of Roman history, from the first tentative steps of the Republic to the crises of the Empire. Vae Victis expands on this already gigantic premise with a few new ideas.
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Paradox has a pretty good track record regarding expansions with meaningful features, so how does Vae Victis stack up? Moving on… No, seriously, keep going ET AL.
In fact, the tutorial still uses indicators for the old interface pointing at the wrong icons at times!
I actually had to approach the Paradox PR rep and ask for a features list to make sure I saw all of the new stuff. No matter how small in terms of size or content an expansion or a patch may be, it should always be accompanied by appropriate documentation. End of rant. Despite the fact that Vae Victis is secretive about the new content, it does make some significant improvements to the original game, all of which seem to be positive.
Countries are now organized into larger regions that a governor will run, instead of having one governor for each province. While this is a great feature for the Roman Empire you quickly ran out of candidates if you expanded enough , this makes running the smaller alternative nations much less interesting and a lot of people out of work.
It would be nice if the availability of multi-province governors was dependent on the size of your empire, or give you the option to combine provinces yourself.
Another area of minor overhaul is the monarchy system and ruler succession. There are now three types of succession eldest male child, senior male family member, and alternating between male and female like the Egyptians and each member of your council also new will have a preferred heir, which may not be the proper heir and might lead to some conflicts down the line. There can also be some shenanigans where successors can buy their way to the top which is pretty much how it works in real life.
As for republics, they get a senate that can also lead to some internal strife: members can dislike actions like espionage or declaring war. In additions to struggles between families, you also have factions like political parties that can add another layer of conflict. Who knew running a country was so difficult? The party that is in power might adapt laws without your consent: nice.
Characters within the game are also more complete, with ambitions and the ability to be put into jail or even executed that tends to anger some people.
One of the aspects of Rome that I found intriguing was the character and family dynamics something that EU3 lacked and the Vae Victis expansion for Rome makes this aspect of the game more interesting. There are additional icons on the interface for the new aspects of Vae Victis, although, as I ranted about earlier, they are not explained. They do maintain the easy-to-use nature of Rome, though at least compared to other Paradox grand strategy games.
The expansion provides meaningful, albeit a bit subtle, enhancements to the basic game that make it a more complete product. The changes also highlight the unique aspect of Rome: the characters. Running a monarchy or republic is more complex and ultimately more rewarding thanks to additional levels of conflict with ruler succession, senate laws, political parties, and other assorted nonsense meant to make your life more difficult.
While I would like the ability to remove multi-province governors, the rest of the improvements seem to be for the better. Oh well. Posted by.
Europa Universalis: Rome Wiki
Experience one of the most defining periods in world history in an experience crafted by the masters of Grand Strategy. The greatest cultural and military civilizations are brought to life through this epic title rife with great strategic and tactical depth. Set during the golden age of the Roman Republic when the Senate ruled the Empire, Vae Victis features a massive number of additions and improvements to Europa Universalis: Rome, a game that was already one of the most prominent to depict that era in the widest scope. An overview of these key changes begins with government, which has received a lot of attention for the expansion in order to produce more fluid and balanced gameplay. The cast of historical characters of the ancient world have also had a significant overhaul across a variety of areas and with the addition of missions, decisions and laws, Vae Victis is an expansion packed with a huge amount of new content. Choose between 10 different cultures, including the Roman, Celtic, Greek and Egyptian civilizations, with more than 53 playable factions on a map spanning hundreds of provinces.
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