Europa Universalis: Rome Q&A - First Details

Get the first details on the next Europa Universalis grand strategy game.

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Grand strategy games that model centuries of history across multiple continents can often be complex and intimidating, but the Europa Universalis series has always attempted to bridge the gap between hardcore, high-level strategy, and accessible, dynamic real-time gameplay. The series is now turning its sights to the ancient Roman Empire, with a brand-new setting, new armies, and many more new features. Producer Johan Andersson explains.

The next Europa Universalis game will take place in ancient Rome.

GameSpot: Give us an overview of Europa Universalis: Rome.

Johan Andersson: A detailed strategy game with great scope. The entire game is centered on the characters featured in the game, and diplomacy is completely character-driven. People have learnt to expect a game rich in warfare from us, and they will not be disappointed this time around either. Religion also plays a big part, as [religion was] much more [important] back then.

GS: After creating games that modeled world history from the classical and revolutionary eras, why did you decide to turn to the times of the Roman Empire? JA: The Roman era depicts some of the greatest cultural and military civilizations that have ever existed. We felt there was so much more of this era to explore, and that the time period lends itself perfectly to the type of deep and challenging strategy we have specialized in. In addition, we are all fans of the era, which helps immensely, since we will be well familiar with every inch of it after finalizing this project.

GS: We understand that the game will encompass the years 280 BC through 27 BC. What sorts of real-world historical events will we see unfold in the game, and how will they affect it?

JA: There are no historical events as such, but players will be able to experience the creation of empires and the rise of Rome. Players will be able to start at any date, and at the beginning of each game, [conditions] will closely replicate history, but once the game evolves, characters develop and the game will develop with them.

GS: Tell us about the nations that will be available for play in the new game. How will they differ from each other? What will be the greatest strengths available to a nation in a Europa Universalis game set in ancient times?

JA: There will be more than 50 playable nations ranging from Rome itself to smaller Gallic tribes. Of course, we have nations like Carthage, Egypt, and Macedonia as well. We chose 280 BC as our starting point because there was a type of balance between several major nations at that time, and essentially any of those major nations could have created an empire similar to that of Rome. Players will have different resources, geographical locations, characters, and governments at their disposal, which will define their strengths and the capabilities of the nations.

GS: How will players be able to customize their nations' abilities and strengths to their liking?

JA: Players can set up trade routes to get access to other resources, appoint characters to various positions in their nation, elect different national ideas depending on their government type...and [they'll have] many more options. The outcome of Europa Universalis: Rome will completely depend on players' strategic and tactical choices.

GS: Obviously, the new game's time period won't allow for cannons or musketeers, as previous games did. Tell us about the sort of forces players will command in the game.

JA: There are six different units available in the game: militia (standard peasant levy); heavy infantry (such as the legionary); archers (missile troops, such as slingers); cavalry; horse archers (Parthians); and elephant cavalry.

GS: Tell us about the game's fully 3D map and terrain. How will they figure into the gameplay? Will we see Hannibal crossing the Alps, for instance?

You'll conquer the ancient world, one province at a time.

JA: The 3D map and improved terrain adds substantially to the look and feel of the game, and in some instances it will play into [certain] strategies. It's more difficult to open trade routes if your nations are separated by mountains, or to wage war over sea, unless you have a strong fleet. What will be visible to players will depend greatly on the strategies applied.

GS: What specific lessons have you taken away from previous games in the series that you're applying to the development of the new game?

JA: We've found what we believe is the perfect balance between a game with great strategic depth and scope, as well as a certain degree of complexity type, and a game that is easier for players to get into. We've also seen the importance of an intuitive interface, as that means gameplay can be kept intelligent and challenging at the same time as it can be welcoming to new players.

GS: Finally, is there anything else you'd like to add about Europa Universalis: Rome?

JA: "Ceterum censeo Carthaginem esse delendam."

GS: Yes. Thank you for that.

Discussion

37 comments
godiba
godiba

A EU with the diplomacy and the heritage of Crusader Kings... i like the idea

Stryker521
Stryker521

I'm still playing Rome: Total War :P

alnors
alnors

woooooow its look coooool

Philo350
Philo350

I love these type of games and cant wait to this comes out. Kinder reminds me RTW. But this game looks more diplomacy, colonization. The one thing that stuffed RTW up was when u got a big population the cities would stuff up i found.

King_Wii
King_Wii

You know I'm still playing EU3 to this very day (and on a regular basis), I realy can't wait for EUR to come out, I'm sure if its anything like EU3 (which it looks that way) it'll be great, and even then some of the new concepts sound great.

wsshell
wsshell

you cant compare rtw and Europa Universalis, i love rtw but to be honest it is very very innacurate at times , without mods at least.

jil223
jil223

Why easier??? EU3 was easy, so easy that it got boring. Plus anyone that says its like TW is wrong. TW is like build troops and fight everyone. While EU3 is much more than that, it is diplomany, colonization, almost everything a empire would do in real life.

Aikman95
Aikman95

I am thrilled that they are working on this game, but leaving out historical events is the WRONG move. They add flavor to the game, as well as something to look forward to. The 280 to 27 BC era is about what I expected for starters; remember that this company is fond of putting out expansions that will extend the time period for their games. One covering the Germanic Invasions (as did RTW's expansion) will almost certainly be forthcoming. I hope they realize that they will need MORE UNITS than simply SIX. I realize we won't see battles as in RTW, but there is a big BIG difference between a unit of Hastati, a Gaulic Warrior, and phalanx. Anyway, I'm thrilled that this is in the works. Its about time this company get around to the Roman Era.

Kubilius
Kubilius

I'm a big fan of strategy games for more than 10 years now. I've tried a couple of Europa Universalis games, but I just couldn't dig into it - the graphics is horrible, i don't understand what's going on and game gets boring soo fast. And I LOVE long, deep strategy games! Still this is either too deep or too un-user-friendly, dunno.

SimuLord
SimuLord

I love the EU engine---it can be adapted to do just about anything. Nicer still would be a Roman campaign, a game about the Dark Ages, and updated versions of Crusader Kings, Vicky, and HoI2: Doomsday, all using the new 3D engine and all equipped with savegame portability (like the one used for CK/EU2/Vicky/HoI). That would be epic.

darklink91
darklink91

Second quarter 2008 folks, people, more content to come probably.

Lonelynight
Lonelynight

I suck at the demo of EU3 :( I really want to get into it but I am too stupid :cry:

johnchandos
johnchandos

andytech, what you're saying is like "sid meier's civilization is not a strategy game, it only has a single roman special unit! civilization is a total RTW rip-off!" In other words, you couldn't have made it sound dumber.

andytech
andytech

If you want to play a strategy game based around ancient Rome, all you need is RTW with the Europa Barbarorum mod or Rome Total Realism mod. This game is junk compared to either of those. Six total Roman units for EU: Rome? I hope thats a joke. In EB you get over 50 unique, historically-accurate units for Rome alone, such as Cohors Evocata, Camillan Triarii, Cohors Praetoria and Antesignani to name a few. RTW:EB/RTR already have a fantastic campaign along with THE best real-time battles. And hundreds of historically-accurate units. And historical events. And an incredibly deep trait system for family members. Theres no reason for this game to be released unless MAJOR changes are made.

Spacehusky
Spacehusky

Anyone who claims that Europa Universalis is anything like RTW has no idea what they are talking about. RTW's real time battles are amazing in their own way, but the strategy aspects of RTW are NOTHING compared to anything Paradox makes.

Termite551
Termite551

Botatronix, The original EU was released years before rome total war. Furthermore Europa universalis has a real time map, and no battlemap thing. I've never been good at europa, but its fun and much deeper than Rome total war, which just lightly dabbles in economy and government. So, really, the large world map in rome total war, is actually a rip off of europa, and other games like it. The games are COMPLETELY different. Rome total war, who even cares about the world thing on that? I dont, I like the battles, and thats where it shines. Europa, no real time battles and such, but it just anihilates Romes non battle parts

Botatronix
Botatronix

Bread07 I agree with you on''Awesome, finally all my complaints about how much Rome: Total War would benefit from Europa Universalis'' but it still dont chage my mind.daf269 i dont agree with on the fact ''Yeah, 2 completely different games'' because they are not they are just like eachother. i leave this chat now.Cya.

ntnimara
ntnimara

nice to hear... I am a great friend of this game.. but that 280BC to 27BC seems a bit tight for me.. anyway, I'm still interested

modman
modman

i like the addition of latin at the end! :D "and furthermore, it is my opinion that carthage is to be (read: must be) destroyed." it does look a little RTW-ish though. and to be fair, if it only goes as far as 27 BC, i'll stick with RTW - i want my segmentata legionaires (i.e. dudes with armour like the ones in gladiator).

Botatronix
Botatronix

i agree with kingritchus this is such a copy i played rome total war all the time and this is it copied. EU is a rip off of Rome Total War you are a n00b mwa so stfu. This game is uber rip-off of Rome Total war. mwa have you even played Rome Total War.

mwa
mwa

i'm sorry kingritchus but if you think EU is a rip off of Rome Total War you are a n00b and have never played the game before.

Ahurigaan
Ahurigaan

this is very excellent news, needs Historical events though. kingritchus you are very Ignorant.

ghasek
ghasek

yes! best. news. ever.

kingritchus
kingritchus

oh great a Rome total war rip-off.....LET'S BUY IT!

PB-DK
PB-DK

Vae Victis!!! ohhhhhhh this makes me so happy! time to conquer the world again!

mwa
mwa

oh...my...god this is gonna pwn so hard. like, seriously, i can't even begin to describe how exciting this is. EUROPA UNIVERSALIS GOES TO ANCIENT ROME!!!!!!!!! i mean, this is the greatest grand strategy series of all time, and they're taking it to one of the most amazing periods in history. AHHHHH!!!!! there are tears streaming down my face right now :cry:

Przem0
Przem0

Great we have the Roman era in EU, shame it is on this new engine. Really EU lost its charm and it is hard to figure anything out on this map. It just looks silly IMHO.

arctan84
arctan84

Wow! Well thank you guys for clearing that up for me, now i'm really looking forward to it! Thanks!

master_blue
master_blue

Carthage must be destroyed! Thank you paradox been waiting for a title based on Rome, would have liked a complete history all the way to 476 ad with multiple starting points in the campaign (to be fair this is done in EU3) However WHY ARE THERE NOT ANY HISTORICAL EVENTS! this was a big beef alot of EU fans have with EU3!

bread07
bread07

Awesome, finally all my complaints about how much Rome: Total War would benefit from Europa Universalis features has been answered...I can't wait....Krauklis, Carthage was probably Rome's greatest enemy, the venom between them were immense. As it is starting in 280BC Rome won't be much of a powerhouse, I would expect as of the open ended nature of EU that the focus won't be overly on Rome itself as there were heaps of different nations which could have done the same as what Rome did from this point on....the Rome label used to market the product.... On a final note, Carthage will be the victor!

Krauklis
Krauklis

For the rest, it is my opinion that Carthage has to be destroyed? What has that to do with Europa Universalis: Rome? Besides the Roman Carthagenise war?

Jevulen
Jevulen

Im sure this game will be alot more fun to me than Rome: Total War ever was. It's not even in the same genre as Rome: Total War features a crappy campaign-mode with a good RTS-bit into it., EU-games have always been excellent campaign-mode. Which I think is far more enticing than watching AI scurry around the battlefield the same way over and over. And yes. Carthage must be destroyed as Cato used to say.

daf269
daf269

Yeah, 2 completely different games. But anyways this great news, I loved all his previous games.

jil223
jil223

Trust me, its about 2,000,000 times more indepth.

arctan84
arctan84

Ummm are they going to try to rip off the Total War franchise? Looks pretty crappy, but I've learned to wait and play it to really see!