‘Crusader Kings 3’ Rumors: When Will Paradox Make A Sequel To ‘Crusader Kings II’?

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Crusader Kings 2: Conclave is available now. Paradox Interactive

Paradox Development Studio has had a pretty phenomenal first half of 2016. The company has launched its two most successful games ever right on top of each other. Both Stellaris and Hearts of Iron IV broke new records for the sophisticated strategy developer and have a long runway of support ahead of them. But what’s next for Paradox? Could it be—could we dare to hope—that it’s Crusader Kings 3?

Crusader Kings 3: It Is Destiny

Stellaris Photo: Photo: Paradox Interactive

Crusader Kings 2 was a milestone for Paradox Development Studio. Its games had always been successful with a niche audience, but CK2’s extremely compelling mix of strategy, role-playing and sheer over-the-top medieval ridiculousness—not to mention a very compelling fan-made Game of Thrones mod and a more modern interface and engine than previous Paradox games—brought the game a huge amount of coverage in the games media and propelled it to a higher level of success. Since then, Paradox’s games have been trending dramatically upward in terms of popularity and overall success. Niche strategy is a little less niche. Europa Universalis IV, Stellaris, Hearts of Iron—it’s been a good few years.

So when does Paradox revisit the game that transformed the company? In our exclusive interview with Crusader Kings II lead developer Henrik Fåhraeus earlier this year, on the release of Crusader Kings II: Conclave, he noted that Conclave was the last “major” DLC for the game after four years of active development. A few smaller updates and DLCs are planned, but the game is basically finished.

Sooner or later, Paradox will definitely revisit Crusader Kings with a new iteration. The question, of course, is when. Hearts of Iron III and IV were separated by seven years; six years separated Europa Universalis IV from its predecessors. And there’s one other game in Paradox’s historical line that still hasn’t been updated to the “new generation” that started with CK2: Victoria. The series, which covers the gap between Europa Universalis and Hearts of Iron—namely the nineteenth century and the golden age of imperialism—saw its last iteration, Victoria 2, in 2010. Since then, the devs have been busier with other games. That’s the upside and downside to Paradox having extraordinarily long lifecycles for their games: the lead devs are tied up on the previous game for a long time, making new DLC.

We know that Victoria 3 and Crusader Kings 3 are both very likely eventually. But for the moment, Stellaris—headed by Fåhraeus—and Hearts of Iron are both freshly released and will be enjoying Paradox’s TLC and DLC for a long time. Don’t be surprised if Crusader Kings 3 secretly goes into development not that long from now. But don’t expect to hear anything about it for a few more years yet. But hey. There’s still so much else to do in the other games—Crusader Kings 2, Europa Universalis IV, Hearts of Iron IV and Stellaris.

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