Paradox Studio Thread -

Favorite Paradox Game?


  • Total voters
    29
  • Poll closed .

shartshooter

kiwifarms.net
It's flashy, makes big promises and has the company that made EU4 and CK2 behind it. By the time you realize it's an unspired, shallow mess you already played 100 hours and bought all the DLC. But it still has enough potential to keep you trapped in a state of "maybe this DLC/big overhaul patch will finally fix everything" and you just get strung along. Fuck, I typed all this and I'm still hopeful for the 2.2 overhaul and consider getting Megacorp.
Stellaris is popular because it's in the vein of simplified 4x instead of a complicated sim, and thematically sci-fi has wider appeal than non-WW2 history.

Here's some :autism:- I've had this sense for awhile whenever I'd look at the Paradox subreddit or whatever, the way people talked about these games made me feel they didn't actually play them. Especially when it came to CK2, always repeating the same memes. It goes beyond tired jokes. People have nothing other to say. Looking at Steam statistics today, I think I'm right. CK2 has an average total playtime is 33 hours... and the median total playtime is 4.5 hours. So you've got some people who do play it a ton and skews the average, while most finish the tutorial and try to take over Ireland. Vic2 is very similar.

Stellaris is surprisingly ahead though. Average total playtime is 76 hours, while the median total is 27.4 (and remember this is total and CK2 is four years older). HOI4 comes in at 136.7 total average, 43.8 median. EU4 has a respectable 200 total average, and median of 23.5. CIV 5, as a mainstream point of reference, has 95.2 average total playtime and 33.5 hour median.

I'm not arguing Stellaris is good, just that people like this type of bad and Paradox knows it.
 

KiwiLedian

Making Poke and praying for a Mega
kiwifarms.net
I think one of the big wow factors of Stellaris that isn't looked at is multiplayer.
For CK2 and EU4, it's a bit of a slog, CK2 especially, and you have to know quite a lot to really play the game well with other people. I've played both multiplayer and while both can be fun, much of the experience is better laid in single player in both these games.

Vic2 is a little different since, while the economy is the most insane thing to be witness of, the games aren't as much a slog and funnier shit can happen. Yes you can map paint in CK2 and EU4 but only to an extent. CK2 you're constantly balancing your power and dynasty from internal struggle and in EU4, you're dealing with tangles of alliances all the time.
In Vic2 the wars go quicker, you don't have to micro as much, and diplomacy is a stronger focus. Still, in the end it can be a bit of an annoying game to play and it's not an easy game to get a handle on.

HOI4 is really fucking different. Much faster paced, simpler, and easy learning curve. Multiplayer games I've played can and will get insane very quickly but in that vein, the fun starts and lasts. At least until you have Romanians para-dropping into your fucking capital and key capture points then the arguing starts.

But then you have Stellaris. Functionally different than the last 4 I've described, it's more like a Grand Strategy and a 4X had a baby. And that's the crux of it really: it's easy to play with friends.

Look at how Paradox promotes the game through the multiplayer series. There's a reason they do that: to highlight the multiplayer aspect of the game. To sell the multiplayer Stellaris to the casual crowd of people who play 4X.
Single-player can be boring after awhile since you see the same things and go through the same motions but in multiplayer, anything goes. You're not fighting the same AI alone anymore and now you have to play smart and diplomatically.
And when anything can happen, more "meme" moments and fun can be found. I find playing multiplayer Stellaris to be quite fun and relaxing with the added challenge of dealing with others eventually still there.

Basically, Stellaris plays well as a multiplayer game and that is probably a big part of its staying power.
 

CrunkLord420

True & Honest Fan
kiwifarms.net
Playing the new MegaCorps DLC for Stellaris, they changed everything about how planets and the economics system works. It vaguely reminds me of Victoria II with population management and jobs. Just doing a small map with the new corporate races, so far I haven't been able to get a corporate branch with any other race.
 

NeverHappened

That's the sound of books
kiwifarms.net
The AI is dead again. I spent a lot of time balancing my economy and then was the most powerful player by a fair margin(not counting the Fallen Empire) when I stopped having shortages. At least in the last version, an Enemy's Pacifist ally could throw a surprise 8K fleet my way.

The complexity isn't good for the depth. Now you can spend vespene gas on shields and fuel, but you just have to remember to click all the edicts to augment your fleets before battle. That's not depth.

Playing the new MegaCorps DLC for Stellaris, they changed everything about how planets and the economics system works. It vaguely reminds me of Victoria II with population management and jobs. Just doing a small map with the new corporate races, so far I haven't been able to get a corporate branch with any other race.
Yes. I got an alien "Consumer Products" as the only early game empire I interacted with. No deals whatsoever.
 
Reactions: Apoth42 and millais

Guardian G.I.

СНГ scum
kiwifarms.net
For me, the game got way harder. I can't get ahead of the AI on standard difficulty even when cheating like crazy.

Most bugs I've noticed so far are related to UI: the growth slider for pops is too big, factions with custom names still appear with their preset name in the ledger, etc.
 
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Reactions: Apoth42
I'm still annoyed that stellaris was apparently early access but they didn't bother to say that. It's not even close to the same game it started as. And the changes just shuffle the problems around and generally make everything worse.

Maybe it's partly because I'm playing vanilla stellaris, so they know they already have my money, and if I haven't bought DLC by now I probably won't, so fuck me. That's fine, fuck them too.
 
Reactions: Apoth42 and millais

AmpleApricots

kiwifarms.net
Paradox used to be celebrated for delivering an unfinished project and then keeping on patching it, and that was way before early access (hell way before steam itself) was really a thing. Now people get mad at them for keeping working on the product. I myself am not a fan of it either but basically rewriting the game is pretty nice. Selling the fixes as DLC isn't and this they also didn't use to do.

So is it worth the money? Does it make the game a bit more alive? Do you actually feel like having a living, breathing population?
 
Reactions: Apoth42 and millais

Intelligent Calcium

kiwifarms.net
The economy changes are interesting so far but as expected the AI and performance both got fucked. I guess I'll just try out Victoria 2 until/if they fix those.
 

Just Some Other Guy

kiwifarms.net
As usual it seems to come down to the AI. I love playing Patadox games, but they always seem to turn into big steamroll fests with the late game consisting of mop up. I remember playing HoI4 and beating Russia as Romania because the AI insisted on sending millions to die against mountain inf...in mountains with max land def. Like who the fuck would ever do that? Is decent AI that hard? Modders seem to make vastly better AI than a lot of game devs.
 

AmpleApricots

kiwifarms.net
A lot of games like this would be better if somebody at the company would just sit down (preferably somebody with a math or at least business background) and make a spreadsheet in their program of choice and just check if the numbers in the system even add up. It's kind of mind-boggling that this doesn't seem to happen in most games that are basically number games at all. A lot of things feel very poorly planned and balance seems to be feel-based, not math-based. You do have to strike a balance there (heh) because if you make systems tooo balanced, as for example economies in business sims, the game will get boring as it will be very hard to advance. (just like irl) My guess exactly this is what modders do, as they probably also spend indefinitely more time on balancing the systems than the devs ever did. Not only paradox is guilty of this, mind you.

I remember tons of though-as-nails economy sims by german publishers in the 90s. Some of them never even reached the international market. You could basically only play them with pen&paper and a calculator by your side.

Also I looked at the new planet interface in some videos. What a clusterfuck. How are you supposed to gather anything off them? Most of the information seems to be squirreled away in the popups, but in a very confusing way. Also all the pop types only seem to affect the same numbers and feel like filler. That's what I gathered by not reading any dev diaries and just looking at what other people show, mind you. I feel I'm not too far of. Yeah, they won't get my money.
 
Reactions: millais

Apoth42

Hehe xd
kiwifarms.net
As usual it seems to come down to the AI. I love playing Patadox games, but they always seem to turn into big steamroll fests with the late game consisting of mop up. I remember playing HoI4 and beating Russia as Romania because the AI insisted on sending millions to die against mountain inf...in mountains with max land def. Like who the fuck would ever do that? Is decent AI that hard? Modders seem to make vastly better AI than a lot of game devs.
The issue is that they refuse to make being big a challenge. A great example is retinues and succession bonuses killing Ck2s challenge. A king dying used to mean chaos unless you planned things carefully but now it's nothing because your retinues are loyal no matter what and get rid of all vassal dissent and your heir starts with a chunky +rep bonus even if they're an inbred bastard.

The AI is not the problem, its bad game design.
 

Stoneheart

kiwifarms.net
The issue is that they refuse to make being big a challenge. A great example is retinues and succession bonuses killing Ck2s challenge. A king dying used to mean chaos unless you planned things carefully but now it's nothing because your retinues are loyal no matter what and get rid of all vassal dissent and your heir starts with a chunky +rep bonus even if they're an inbred bastard.

The AI is not the problem, its bad game design.
If they try tomake beeing big a problem you get the BS they did with the last EU4 patches. they made it into a money sink, but not not enough to realy hurt.
 
Reactions: Apoth42

Just Some Other Guy

kiwifarms.net
Eh that might be true for CK2, but my example was from HoI4. Somehow I don't think the AI should be willing to drain it's entire manpower reserves against a mountain defense line without making a single gain.
 
Reactions: Apoth42

Splendid Meat Sticks

Castigat ridendo mores
True & Honest Fan
kiwifarms.net
I love playing Patadox games, but they always seem to turn into big steamroll fests with the late game consisting of mop up. I remember playing HoI4 and beating Russia as Romania because the AI insisted on sending millions to die against mountain inf...in mountains with max land def. Like who the fuck would ever do that?
The USSR literally did that in that era against Finland. Twice. Look up the Winter War and the Continuation War.
 

Just Some Other Guy

kiwifarms.net
The USSR literally did that in that era against Finland. Twice. Look up the Winter War and the Continuation War.
I know about the Winter War, still nowhere near the 100:1 casualties and millions dead the HoI4 ai will commit to.

EDIT: Max land forts is pretty much the Maginot Line, except this was in mountanious terrain with no way to go around it. Without a lot of bombers and fire support (which early ussr doesn't have), the ai should say fuck that and back off those land claims.
 

Apoth42

Hehe xd
kiwifarms.net


They know some of their audience.

If they try tomake beeing big a problem you get the BS they did with the last EU4 patches. they made it into a money sink, but not not enough to realy hurt.
It should be built into the core game mechanics instead of just being tacked on nonsense.

Eu3 does this best with its MTTH, long time integration, lack of colonial nations (you have to guard your colonies yourself), sliders and longer travel times.
 

Syaoran Li

Vampire Superstar
kiwifarms.net
I want to get into Paradox games badly but first I need to know if my laptop can run the game and then I need to know how much to save up for the DLC's.

Also, I'm torn between buying Crusader Kings 2 or Hearts of Iron 4.for my first Paradox experience.
 

GentlemanFaggot

I got in...
kiwifarms.net
Which is better: Europa Universalis 3 or 4?
4. EU3 was great but it feels a little dated now. Some people swear by the old mechanics in EU3 over the "Mana Pool" point system that effects pretty much anything in EU4, though.

I want to get into Paradox games badly but first I need to know if my laptop can run the game and then I need to know how much to save up for the DLC's.

Also, I'm torn between buying Crusader Kings 2 or Hearts of Iron 4.for my first Paradox experience.
Depends on what kind of gamer you are. HOI4 is better in terms of combat and actual gameplay while CK2 is more fun from playing a character and the fun events that occur.

HOI4 has every nation playble in Vanilla and I believe you can play the most popular mods without any expansions such as Kaiserreich.

CK2 has a lot of unplayables in Vanilla (Can only play Christian Feudal leaders) but Vanilla is a good place to start. DLC priority starts with buying religious groups or governments you would want to play as, followed by particularly great DLC (Old Gods, Reaper's Due, Holy Fury). Old Gods happens to be both of these (Makes Pagans playable, allows you to raid for wealth without declaring war, adds a rape button, etc) so that one is often considered to be a good purchase.
 
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Reactions: Syaoran Li

Zaragoza

Love Saw It
True & Honest Fan
kiwifarms.net
I want to get into Paradox games badly but first I need to know if my laptop can run the game and then I need to know how much to save up for the DLC's.

Also, I'm torn between buying Crusader Kings 2 or Hearts of Iron 4.for my first Paradox experience.
Crusader Kings II
 
Reactions: Syaoran Li
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