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Grand Strategy Where is Victoria III?

Discussion in 'Strategy and Simulation' started by IDtenT, Feb 2, 2021.

  1. IDtenT Contact me for a good time Patron

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    Why does a mercantilist and republic simulator scare Paradox so much, that they don't even want to touch it?
     
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  2. Hóngwèibīng Arcane Vatnik Wumao

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    Not as accessible to normies ergo less money to be made.
     
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  3. Higher Game Arcane

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    Hanging out with Half Life 3, Freespace 3, and No One Lives Forever 3. :negative:
     
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  4. Xamenos Magister Patron

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    You do NOT want current Paradox to make a Victoria 3. It'll only break your heart.
     
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  5. Raghar Arcane

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    Not enough buyers.
     
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  6. mondblut Arcane

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    You want a colonialism simulator in 2021?

    Be glad you can still play as Germany in latest HoI. I expect the next one to crack down on this white supremacy.
     
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  7. The Brazilian Slaughter Arcane

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    And Megaman Legends 3
     
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  8. Why would you want them to? The first sequel was already decline and Paradox is hitting new lows all the time these days. I'd much rather see a GSG offering from another dev set within the same time period.
     
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  9. Pegultagol Erudite

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    It is already completed sitting in a vault in Stockholm somewhere. It just is waiting its turn to be examined and carefully divvied up as multi-installment DLCs to last as long as Victoria's reign.
     
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  10. Zed Duke of Banville Zo Kath Ra Patron

    Zed Duke of Banville
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    [​IMG]

    I concur that Paradox is currently incapable of recreating the design (though lamentably not commercial) success of the first two Victoria games.
     
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  11. Sranchammer Arcane

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    I'm Ridin' with Biden I'm Ridin' with Biden
    Politically incorrect. Argue all you want but it comes down to this.
     
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  12. Delterius Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    its happening rn
     
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  13. Mortmal Arcane

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    Nothing else to say... just have to look at cK3, it will be pretty and fun but not deep enough for multiple playthroughs ,you will never launch it again.
     
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  14. LizardWizard Arbiter

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    Considering people actually think V2 was good, I'm fine.

    Ricky was the last actual good paradox Victoria game.
     
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  15. FreeKaner Prophet of the Dumpsterfire

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    Victoria II is already a great game with HPM. Don't see how current Paradox can make anything better.
     
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  16. Herzog Self-Ejected

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    Three is an unlucky number in video game industry.
    Better and more numerous game mechanics, more depth, better UI, etc. Having a clear idea on the maths behind the game would be especially beneficial (ideally found in the game itself in an accessible way). I'm almost certain that even the original Victoria II devs have no idea how some of the things are calcualted and the best we have is an approximation by dedicated fans.
    Idiotic take. The lack of casual appeal, as others have already pointed out, is what it comes down to. Especially if you imagine the theoretical third installment to be a proper successor, and not an over-casualized mess (not that Victoria II is a particularly difficult game on it's own).
     
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  17. FreeKaner Prophet of the Dumpsterfire

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    That's great in word detail, but how did you come to conclusion that Paradox can do this? Moreover, have you considered a certain degree of complexity leads also naturally to obscurity of the systems? What does "better and more numerous" game mechanics with more depth entail in case of Victoria?

    Only advancement I can see modern Paradox making for Victoria is just better UI and better in-game descriptions. However Victoria II is built on fundamentals with relatively fewer abstractions compared to games like EU or HOI already. Just saying "make Victoria but better" is meaningless.

    A Victoria 3 would likely not end up in a Victoria 2 but better, but rather a game buried under abstractions, derivations and mana factories.
     
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  18. Herzog Self-Ejected

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    Assuming the conversation is strictly theoretical at this point is only sane. They won't ever release a proper Victoria III. This is mental masturbation. EDIT: to clarify, no, they can't. If I ever go around claiming Paradox can do this, remind me to sign in a mental institution. :lol:
    Yes, but if we compare the most complex video game systems to the most complex real-world examples, such as philosophy or complex engineering, they are children's toys in comparison. There is no reason for them to be obscure. If the game was programmed it had specific parameters, calculations and programming done, ergo it can be documented properly and in a reasonably clear manner.
    I am not going to give you an extensive list of things I wished this theoretical game had, for I have already pointed out it is theoretical, and as such nothing but mental masturbation, but to give you a few:
    • Population mechanics being more complex. With more motivations and parameters to become a specific subset of population. More population subsets to reflect real world examples more clearly, such as different clades of lower, middle and upper classes.
    • More economic depth. A larger variety of resources. An economy that has more complexity. Complexity expressed perhaps in different motivations for demand, supply and economic growth, i.e. larger variety of population sub-clades having an enormous range of needs. This is already expressed in the game; I just want you to imagine more of the same and with more realism. Realism is a silly word because you probably need to study economics for at least as much as a PhD to even have a competent grasp of the complexity of real world economics. No game is anywhere near to expressing that for a long time.
    • More mechanics for war. Warfare is fairly drab in Victoria. There's plethora of good games with better warfare without me ever needing to give you examples on how that could be improved.
    • More choices for government, more complexity and more consequence for political reforms, changes and internal political decisions. The game as it is is what an arcade is to a simulation in that aspect.
    I agree that it is meaningless. But it isn't particularly difficult to envision a better game in itself. I'm in agreement that Paradox doesn't have it in them to release a good game that would be superior to its predecesor. HOI3, VIC2 and EU3 are peak Paradox. They added some nice things afterwards, like some mechanics, graphical improvements and quality of life additions, but fundamentally nothing they've released after has been a better game overall.
     
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  19. FreeKaner Prophet of the Dumpsterfire

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    There are two issues here, and one I consider a fundamental misunderstanding of the genre and indeed why Paradox is failing to make good games now. First one is the misunderstanding that complexity for complexity sake is a desirable goal, second is that addition of abstractions makes a game more "realistic".

    I would go right ahead and say that EU4 is a more complex game than Victoria 2 in the outright. It has a lot more mechanics and derivative mechanics, just layers and layers of abstraction on top of each other, lots of regional fluff, cosmetic or mechanic. Is it a more realistic game compared to Victoria 2, in either for simulation of a game as such in the vacuum, or representing the dynamics of the era it is representing? The answer is no in both cases. EU4 is a static, and stagnant, game that goes little beyond being risk with (bad) trade despite all the abstractions and complexity they have add over the years, it has became a game that's just a pile of mechanics and abstractions that made it only more divorced from the era it is trying to represent or coherent as a game. Victoria 2 meanwhile is actually a simple game, it has certain complexities in the coding sense, but as for game mechanics it is built on large amount of fundamentals and very few abstractions. Victoria 2 is a game that is more simulationist (though by design just an arcade game) and also more able to represent dynamics of the era it is representing (in regards of shifting situation of politics, demographics and economic development).

    Victoria 2 uses a few obscure sleights of hands that are essentially abstractions that tie to each other, and these are generally the areas that people complain about most. Such as how sphere mechanics duplicates production or how excess unsold production is destroyed at the end of the day. However these are done in such ways that abstraction is only done when it is necessary because of technical or practical limitations. Representing an exact way how a country that's in political and economic sphere is actually subservient and beneficial to its great power would be a monumental task that would require a simulation that is not even agreed upon academically in the first place or having the CPU power required to calculate all unsold productions and economic effects of this on supply and demand. Nevertheless because it is a game built on fundamentals and not abstractions, these few abstractions just pick up the slack and synergize together. I.E duplication of production "compensates" for lack of non-state stockpile, the abstracted percentage bonuses to production in regions that already have a relevant RGO or factory represents the logistics costs in areas that do not have these bonuses. The result is a simple and coherent game, that also is capable of representing a natural demographic shift and industrial growth.

    Ultimately, the game is flawed in few areas (especially in terms of warfare and AI's inability to even get that right), as well as certain aspects of diplomacy and research. However, just plugging in whatever consumer commodity or industrial good one can imagine into the game wouldn't improve it, nor would just diversifying classes to represent every half-step milestone between how a clerk in a small factory producing something cheap versus a clerk that's in a cornershop actually have different disposable income. It would be bloat for bloat's sake and in such case elegance should be preferred. Because at that point you can take fundamental representation to be exactly that, a fundamental category. You don't need 7 types of liquor for every distinct economic class, or division of clothing and furniture that open up "regular" and "luxury" into a spectrum to represent purchasing power of every class in a gradient. It is just complexity for complexity's sake and is just a bloat fetishism.

    Victoria 2, probably because of technical and practical limitations rather than design goals, managed to hit a nice spot. It works on fundamentals that are categories, it uses abstractions only when it is practical to do so and not to add complexity for complexity's sake. Which means that in a usual session, the world of the game organically evolves between 1836 and 1936, representing how the politics, demographics and the economic development of the world has shifted. In 1836 only few regions are industrialized, few technologies researched and political systems are autocracy of one form or another. In the end of the session, a large portion of world is industrialized to one degree or another, the politics shifted towards what the demographics demand one way or another. It is capable of doing this because it is built on simple building blocks that represent fundamentals. While a game like EU4 where abstraction upon abstractions are piled together is static from start to finish, because a game with so much mechanical complexities and abstractions cannot be made to coherently represent anything whatsoever.

    Best case scenario would be paradox doing another Victoria 2 DLC that adds some more bugfixes, balance passes, AI improvements and some fluff for events. Otherwise they'll end up doing another Imperator where the game is abstracted to hell and back for sake of complexity that it represents nothing but complexity itself.
     
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  20. whydoibother Magister

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    expand (open)

    [​IMG]
     
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  21. Herzog Self-Ejected

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    It is not for "for complexity sake". And more complexity on it's own is desirable either way. That is, unless you prefer to have the game dragged down to absolute minimum of abstract representation of needs (more on abstraction later), broken down to broad category of food, resources and money.
    I don't know much about EUIV. It has never appealed to me particularly. I have played it only a little.
    First: you keep speaking of "abstractions". Either of the games are entirely about abstractions. Everything in the game is about abstractions of real life examples, i.e. steel is produced in one region (where it only produces that sole, raw resource, so almost entiretity of working population is engaged in extraction of one resource, nevermind food or any other commodity that it needs and would produce locally IRL) and then a factory (which itself only produces ammunition: by now you should be seeing how absurd and "abstract" this is) produces a blanket commodity called "ammunition", which in itself is an abstraction for different shells, calibers, explosives, and so on ad nauseum. So why are you using "abstraction" in a derogatory way?
    So from what I am understanding you are saying that EUIV is an inferior game because it doesn't simulate its time period accurately because of over-complex mechanics. Which I don't think is nowhere near to being accurate. If I had to take a semi-blind guess why I think it doesn't get it right, I would say it is solely for the enormous time-frame the game involves. Victoria II only operates for a century, most games lasting MUCH less. EUIV is of a broader time, from the fall of Constantinople to Napleonic wars.This is an insanely long and varied period of history. One century would be difficult enough, nevermind 4. If anything the game doesn't nearly have enough mechanics to represent all the historical changes and whatever areas they affect, be it economics, society, religion, government, culture and so on. And just because the game has plenty of mechanics which are badly implemented, it in itself isn't any argument against having dense mechanics in any game. Maybe I am misunderstanding you. To add, only mechanics which are meaningful in any way really add to complexity. Adding a customiser for family portraits doesn't really make the game any more complex, but adding in a realistic way to stimulate inflation does. Adding in mechanics that govern trade won't necessarily make the game any more complex if their execution is poor, even if in their intentions they are quite noble and correct. On this:
    You make a fair point, however it seems you assume that either you have a flawed, simplistic system like that of Victoria II (any Paradox game really) or a real world simulation that isn't currently possible. There are increments, steps and shades inbetween those two. A game can be better in small steps. You don't generally get big leaps in games like that. I think that fundamentally it is possible for Paradox to create a game that is even slighly better. Will they? Probably not. Could they? Absolutely. I'd love to get a real world simulation where I could economize over shoe-strings, but alas I have some sense of realistic expectation in me.
    I already spoke about this in the sense that additions should be meaningful. I do think it is a prerequesite to have a larger amount of economic resources, even if you think it is bloat, if you want an interesting and complex game about economic simulation. Adding in 7, hell, even 20 types of booze is desirable if you can stimulate, for example, crazes for a specific type of alcohol, as has happened historically, and the market responding to that by producing more of that, while some other types of alcohol sell less, with that snowballing in factory closures, unemployment, depression because of that, thus more drinking, until you reach a point where you can simulate a game where you can create a nation of alcoholics. With that said you are entirely correct that it would be pointless you have 7 types of booze in Victoria 2 as is.
    You're entirely wrong here. The entire game is only an abstraction. There are no fundamentals.
     
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  22. FreeKaner Prophet of the Dumpsterfire

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    Of course as a game and as a quite arcade game at that, the whole thing is an abstraction. However what I mean by abstraction here is usage of result-oriented abstractions that don't try to represent fundamentals but rather abstract the whole of the process without chain of cause and effect. When I mean fundamental, I mean a direct, tangible relation between the various (obviously) abstracted game mechanics. It is about how many degrees of removal there exists between what the game tries to represent and how it represents it. In such an example, it is the fact that in EU4 the army maintenance costs ducats, which is extremely abstracted. While in Victoria 2 the maintenance is actually providing the soldiers with various supplies. The supplies themselves are abstracted as ammunition or canned food but overall it creates a direct cause and effect. While both the soldiers and their supplies are abstracted, the relation is a fundamental one. Here key is adding tangible fundamental categories that matter so they can interact which each other in a direct and coherent matter, rather than adding complex layers of abstractions that don't. This fluid interaction is a function of simplicity, not complexity. Here Victoria 2 uses fundamental categories, which represent a meaningful distinction. Could you add all sorts of ammunitions, food types, clothing types that a soldier needs? Surely you could, but adding them as such wouldn't be meaningful. Goal shouldn't be adding everything conceivable, but removing what is unnecessary. Elegant design is achieved by having these fundamental categories interact with each other, rather than creating layers of abstractions that are all variables in entangled algebra that represent nothing.

    Less change happened in the time period EU4 covers than that of Victoria 2. Especially for what EU4 is simulating, I.E war, diplomacy and trade. It is not that EU4 covers the period inadequately for real or imagined reasons, it is that it doesn't cover it whatsoever. Because the game has very few fundamentals and a lot of abstractions. Victoria 2 sees more change in 100 years than EU4 does in 377. EU4 has plenty of mechanics to address some of the changes but they are not genuine interaction between fundamentals but layers of abstractions that do not interact with each other. If I were to put it another way, Victoria 2 uses simple building blocks and lets them interact with each other, where it abstracts what is necessary and reasonable, adding detail when it would create an interaction. EU4 simply has bunch of superficial interactions that are result-oriented. This would be more clear perhaps if you were familiar with EU4, especially its mechanics in terms of trade and warfare.

    Here the issue is one of goals and ambitions. If you are trying to make an endlessly complex system, you could make one. Paradox is very capable of this hence Stellaris and Imperator. However neither game is as organic as Victoria 2 is. Because they are working with distinct abstractions and little fundamentals (Stellaris is their best game for this after Victoria 2 and notoriously unstable and runs terribly). Complexity shouldn't be a goal, but a result. One shouldn't start by saying how could make this more complicated? Rather it should be, how to represent this fundamental category that was relevant to era (real or fictional) without making it too complicated? An abstraction in Victoria 2 is an abstraction because it would be too complicated otherwise, it is an abstraction in EU4 because they tried to represent something in the abstract. That's why start and end of Victoria 2 are completely different worlds, where world gets more populous, industrious, changed politically and demographically. While in EU4 there is little difference between 1444 and 1821 except where the borders are.

    Additions should be meaningful goes without saying, but the issue is what is a meaningful addition? I would say that a meaningful addition is one that represents a fundamental element that has impact. In this sense you start adding the most fundamental and important elements, and add elements until it becames either unreasonable or pointless then use abstractions as a cut off point. Victoria 2 works on simple fundamentals of population, resources and goods, it adds details to these in very fundamental categories to represent its area then abstracts when it becomes unreasonable or unnecessary to complicate it further. A lot of other games, especially paradox ones like EU4 and Imperator don't do this. They are just abstracted fluff, it's all self-contained abstractions that exists in parallel, with very little fundamental. Result is as I said because Victoria 2 works from fundamentals and basic building blocks it represents the changes that happened in real world between 1836 and 1936 sensibly and realistically (as far as an arcade game goes) because the causes and effects are similar. While EU4/Imperator does not because they are result-focused abstractions.
     
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  23. Herzog Self-Ejected

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    ... yet switching over from paying for your armies with ducats, and presumably with those ducats for supplies like ammunitions, canned food, etc., to directly supplying them with these is meaningful? Why is it meaningful now, but in your own example, which is by adding more types of supplies and demands, it suddenly isn't?
    You're not adding layers of abstraction (well, maybe strictly speaking, as would be adding anything to a video game) by complexifying variety of the needs and supplies your military needs, in fact it is the entire opposite. You speak in one sense as if adding in is adding more abstraction, yet in the same tone you speak of it as less abstract: you're merely adding more algebra by adding resources rather than substituting with ducats after all. I might be wrong, but at the end of the day regardless of the type of supply your military lacks, you only lose combat readiness (or was it morale?). Same with inadequate amount of ducats to pay. Both are equally abstracted. Only difference is that you are supposed to either produce those specific goods or to buy them from the market, as opposed to acquiring ducats in EUIV through trade and whatever revenues. Yet you praise one as fundamental and then dismiss the other as abstract.
    You could have a broad category of medicine as a supply category. If you can't provide it adequately, your field casualties go up to represent injuries sustained in fighting and inability to house field hospitals. You could have various categories of substances optionally requested as supplies purely for morale, with time and living conditions improving adding more and more demands as the population grows more accustomed to high standard of living, both in and out of warfare. This is what Victoria 2 does to a degree with new produce appearing towards late game that actually has a demand by the civ pops IIRC.
    Absolutely not.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Renaissance
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reformation
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Counter-Reformation
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_Discovery
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_Enlightenment
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Revolution
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Early_modern_period
    ... and so on. Nevermind EUIV seems to cover non-European nations more than VIC2 ever does, as is expected, for in the time-frame of VIC2 most non-European nations were basically dogfood for colonials and thus have fairly bare-bones gameplay, bar a few exceptions.
    In what sense? Both feel railroaded, VIC2 probably more so, at least from what I've seen. You start the game and more or less the expected historical thing happens for a while. Nevermind in VIC2, especially the mod you name-dropped, you are railroaded hard and have very minimal difficulty playing specific nations, i.e. most major and minor powers. Forming Italy feels hardly a monumental task when you just have to sit and wait until a specific time comes. Then suddenly things happen and you become a unified country without having done much. Trying to play this more organically, without the game hand-holding and railroading, it is extremely difficult to do the same with regular alliances and warfare. This is my biggest gripe with Victoria that to play well, you must be hand held to do specific things, otherwise you lose out on lots of things necessary to be competitive. You're playing a quasi simulation which tries too hard to enact things that happened IRL, rather than how they could have happened. It's always the same old boring game, rarely does the AI do anything unexpected, and the game itself severely punishes you for expanding in ways the events and decisions don't want you to by having too much infamy and other penalties.
    There definitely are, but to insist that there is little difference is to completely dismiss whatever tech advances, economical and military advances the game has. And to use industrialization as an example is unfair because the game doesn't try to stimulate it at all. What the game focuses is early modern Europe (largely, but my impression of non-European nations was at least decent compared to Vicky) with it's colonial expansionism, religious wars and the change from medieval insitutions to more modern ones in several different ways. Maybe it isn't as apparent as Vic2, but then again it really does suffer from the vast time span it has. It's a gargantuan task to represent four centuries in that specific time.
    Refer to what I said above. Your argument doesn't make a lot of sense, because you selectively decide what is fundamental (like changing ducats for supplies), but at other points you arbitarily brush off any possible improvements as abstract bloat(like adding even more supplies which could have impact on the gameplay, but Victoria 2 is the perfect game already).

    P.S.
    Excuse me if some of the things I've said read like I've had a stroke.
     
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  24. FreeKaner Prophet of the Dumpsterfire

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    I am speaking of two things and not singular thing. You are conflating them though in hindsight I could have also been more clear but I did state this from start. One is adding complexity for complexity's sake which is what I am talking about in regards to adding more types of something, the other is adding abstractions for realism sake which is about adding mechanics layers.

    See above, the problem here isn't existence of ducats or it is interaction with armies, which is actually a fundamental interaction, but to what degree they have been abstracted, which is basically absolutely.

    Medical supplies could be added, though they are represented instead in technologies. Here it is because they wanted to represent technological advancements rather than production capabilities.

    Absolutely yes, all of you have quoted except "Age of Discovery" are broadly political and cultural trends. Industrialization, colonialism (in political and economic sense, not just conquest) and democratization are more radical changes because they fundamentally alter demographic and material conditions, Victoria 2 represents this well in demographic shifts and industrialisation. However it doesn't matter how many things happen in EU4 time period as political or cultural because EU4 represents exactly none, except age of discovery but even that is not well represented because it changes nothing fundamentally.

    I think you are mistaking HPM with HFM. There is very little railroading in base game except absolutely pivotal events, and HPM just adds a few more. HFM is very railroaded but I am not talking about that. Aside from that EU4 has a lot more events and mission-trees (focus trees) that pre-empt what will take place. Overall what will happen is that people will expand their borders and thus numbers. In case of Victoria 2 and EU4 there are certain technological gates to formation of certain states, though in Victoria 2 it makes more sense because they are tied to ideologies in particular (often times just nationalism). I am not sure how much of EU4 you played (or Victoria 2) but EU4 is a lot more railroaded. What Victoria 2 is, it is more structured and it is harder to shake the boat that is by design as Victoria 2 represents demographic and resource limitations.

    Technology differences are very abstracted and hardcoded, those also exist in Victoria 2 but it is a different addition to main fundamentals, which is as I said population, resources and goods. Religion and culture etc. are just simply abstracted, they don't represent anything, fundamentally it doesn't matter except result in another abstract.

    I am not selectively deciding what is fundamental and what's abstract. I have given very clear description of what they are. The result is quite evident, there is a reason why the whole of Victoria 2 starts and ends differently, while world of EU4 remains unchanged through all the supposed monumental effects. EU4 simply doesn't represent any of the changes that happened in its time period, regardless of whether there had been more or less. Except expansion of borders.

    EU4 can't even properly represent what's supposed to be two fundamental factors of the era, the struggle of states to centralize and maritime trade routes. Because it doesn't have many fundamentals that interact with each other. Its two fundamentals are ducats and mana, rest are just layers and layers upon abstractions, a lot of which were piled up in iteration.
     
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