Crusader Kings 3 is a grand strategy game that makes other Civilization type games look like they’re for stinky babies. You will forget your job, you will forget your family, and your legs will atrophy to the consistency of a gingersnap cookie.

At its core, CK3 is an endless game about relationships, culture, and war. You really don’t even have to win. You just do whatever you want. There are a SHIT TON of pre-set campaign scenarios or you can create your own character with your own starting conditions. It is a game of infinite possibilities. Do you want to use your spies to assassinate your enemies like a little bitch? Do you want to create a society of homosexual women that use their male concubines to further their bloodline? Do you want to keep your bloodline pure and lead your armies into battle with a legion of your physically and mentally disabled inbred descendants? I guess you can, but that’s pretty fucked.

What at first seems like an overwhelming level of complexity, gradually turns into a game that is simply about how others perceive you, and how you use your relationships and your people to further your story. If you love stories like A Song of Ice and Fire or Dune, there is no better sandbox to create one of a kind stories and have a shit ton of fun doing it.

For all of the stinky babies out there who “don’t like turn based games, they’re so boring,” this is not a turn based game. Time passes the same way for everyone, and time also passes for your playable character. And death comes for us all. When it does, you get the privilege of continuing your dynasty with your heir who is granted new perks based on their genes, how and who educated them, and luck. These may include ‘lazy,’ ‘wheezing’, ‘opium addled,’ or my favourite ‘witch’.

In my current playthrough, my military dynasty is secretly a coven of witches who indoctrinate their children and spouses into the practice of witchcraft before they come of age. Some asshole in my court found out and told everyone in the kingdom, and now they all hate me.

Not everything is a child executing, adulterating good time though. Some things in this game are a little annoying. Learning the differences between Baronies, Counties, Kingdoms and etcetera can be a pain if you are not familiar already and that knowledge is necessary to play the game. Luckily the game gives actually helpful and unobtrusive hints for every action in the game before you take them, and time can be paused for you to get your bearings while you’re still learning. The process of declaring war and managing your armies seems simple at first, but without the knowledge of the rules of warfare it can be a clunky process. Even when you think you have a grasp on it, army management just simply isn’t as intuitive as the competition. Trying to decipher when an army is under your control, or how to effectively split armies and assign new commanders wasn’t really a fun process for me. I also really wish I could quickly and accurately gauge the opinions of people towards characters other than myself. As it stands I can really only tell what other people think of me directly. Whether that is just really not obvious or it’s just not a visible part of the simulation, I’m not sure, either way it was information I occasionally wish I had.

SO if you like good games, this is a good game, and I recommend it. Just because you don’t like Civilization does not mean you will not like this game, though be warned that it’s still not for everyone..

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