Metascore
82

Generally favorable reviews - based on 31 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 31
  2. Negative: 0 out of 31
  1. Mar 13, 2012
    95
    The best Paradox Interactive game to date. No game has ever explored feudalism so deeply.
  2. Feb 13, 2012
    95
    Whilst the subject matter and the set-up may not be to everyone's liking, Crusader Kings II is definitely the most impressive Paradox game to date. The game mechanics are an interesting twist on a well-known genre, the code itself is highly polished, and it's just a really fun and interesting game to play.
  3. Feb 29, 2012
    91
    This is a brilliant game, a masterful work by the people at Paradox. Perhaps the biggest praise I can give it is that I plan on playing it on a regular basis far beyond the time it takes to review it. It's rare when a game captures my imagination to this degree, but Crusader Kings II still has its hooks in me.
  4. 90
    One of the best strategies we have ever got from Paradox Interactive – Crusader Kings II offers a huge amount of sophisticated entertainment in the rich and living medieval world. [March 2012]
  5. Mar 1, 2012
    90
    This highly-developed mediaeval strategic game with an enhanced classic system made by Paradox offers a thrilling and absorbing experience of the uncompromising politics - or more precisely - of the European mediaeval life of nobility in the 11th to the 15th century. It doesn't matter if you build great dynasty of yours or not - there are always goals you want to fight for. Crusader Kings II lets you to recreate the history - don't miss this unique opportunity.
  6. Feb 29, 2012
    90
    Crusader Kings II is probably the best game Paradox has ever made. The nordic studio is getting more and more experienced in the strategy genre after years making excellent titles, and the depth of Crusader Kings II is simply overwhelming. Thanks to its good AI, the game gets challenging and realistic. Its only flaws are the limitations in the military part.
  7. Feb 24, 2012
    90
    So deep, so intensive, a great challenge, Cruasder Kings II is the best strategic game of the last years and the mature child of Paradox's evolution.
  8. Feb 21, 2012
    90
    Crusader Kings II is an engaging game. Grand stratedy fans will be pleased by all its features, while other people may also enjoy it. Simply a must for all the people who loved previous Paradox games.
  9. Feb 21, 2012
    90
    Few games have captured the essence of the feudal society so faithfully. A complete simulation of dynasties and a medieval strategy game that no one should miss.
  10. Feb 20, 2012
    90
    In short, Crusader Kings II is a majestic feudal sandbox, the greatest generator of hilarious medieval soap opera ever created and Paradox Interactive's best title to date.
  11. Feb 17, 2012
    90
    It's an incredibly dynamic game that seems to perfectly simulate the state of flux that Europe and the Middle East were in during the Middle Ages.
  12. Mar 21, 2012
    87
    With unconventional subtleties like plotting, matchmaking and title distribution, CK2 never cramps your creativity with mundane victory conditions. [May 2012, p.67]
  13. Feb 14, 2012
    86
    The bottom line is that Paradox Interactive knows its audience, and the developer hand-crafted Crusader Kings II to fit the needs of its dedicated fan base. This is not an accessible game, and it does not pretend to be. If you want an update to the original Crusader Kings, or if you want to play Sengoku in the context of a different culture, Crusader Kings II is a must-buy. If not, stay away.
  14. Feb 20, 2012
    82
    Playing as a lower level character is almost even more fun than starting out as the King, I mean sure, it's good to be king….but it's nice to see the designers of the game took not only their fan base into consideration with this one…no even someone new to this type of gaming would do well to have this as their first experience. After running those tutorials off you go… and players will have all the courtly intrigue, army gathering and conquests and world running they can handle.
  15. Jan 24, 2013
    80
    It might look like a daunting game to dive into, but stick with it and you'll find one of the most engaging and addictive strategy experiences available.
  16. Oct 27, 2012
    80
    Crusader Kings II is quite unique. It's focus on dynasties and family leads to original and entertaining gameplay with great depth and variation. If not for a steep learning curve, it would be close to perfect.
  17. Oct 17, 2012
    80
    Crusader Kings 2 isn't a traditional RTS. The countless intrigues, relationships and family issues that you have to deal with, might make it seem more like a relationship-manager than an actual game. Still, it's quite refreshing and thanks to the countless choices it makes for a great political playground. Every play session is different and opens up a new story, but in return it requires a lot of insight and empathy.
  18. Mar 5, 2012
    80
    One of the surprising things about Crusader Kings II is that, for a Paradox title, it's actually relatively easy to pick up.
  19. Feb 27, 2012
    80
    For us it was a slow burn; the more we understood, the more fun we had. Once you start getting past the learning curve you'll find yourself more and more absorbed by all the complex little dramas that swirl around your nobles; you'll know you're getting there once you start feeling the urge to fill in other people on your crazy, possibly immoral medieval exploits.
  20. Feb 23, 2012
    80
    This vast, churning sea of information is Crusader Kings II's greatest strength, but it is also the reason the game is as niche as niche gets. You need to bring patience, discipline, and probably a notebook to even scratch its surface, but Crusader Kings II is massively rewarding in its own unique way if you're willing to put in the time and effort it demands.
  21. Feb 22, 2012
    80
    Probably the best game in its class. It's the usual strategic made by Paradox: deep and realistic but unable to catch if you're not into this kind of game.
  22. Feb 22, 2012
    80
    Whoever wants to dive deep into the Dark Ages will find a complex strategic simulation.
  23. Feb 22, 2012
    80
    The historical accuracy of Crusader Kings II leaves a little bit to be desired, and the restriction of only being able to play Christian dynasties is frustrating given the dynamism of the Middle East in that era. Yet when actually playing the game, there's always something to keep me motivated to keep going. There's always a plot that can be instigated, or a war with victory just out of reach, or an heir to find a suitable wife for. That's what makes a great strategy game, albeit one that tantalizingly feels like it could be even greater if it'd cut out some of the barriers to entry.
  24. Feb 17, 2012
    80
    Quotation forthcoming.
  25. Feb 16, 2012
    80
    Through a complex system of diplomacy and backstabbing, Crusader Kings II makes every power struggle an engrossing one.
  26. Feb 15, 2012
    80
    Crusader Kings 2 explores one of the most important periods of human history with accuracy and passion. A must-have for all fans of Paradox strategy games, but a bit too complex for other players.
  27. Mar 12, 2012
    79
    Its presentation is poor compared to similar titles, but it's what is required. But in the most important element, gameplay, Crusader Kings 2 has no match. It offers a cornucopia of options that grant us the ability to organize our strategy plan in extreme detail. [April 2012]
  28. May 10, 2012
    70
    People who spent dozens or even hundreds of hours with Crusader Kings and the Europa Universalis series will like Crusader Kings II and appreciate the fact that this is the most polished game by Paradox Interactive. Others will probably quickly get bored. [June 2012, p.82]
  29. Apr 27, 2012
    70
    A brilliant treatment of feudalism in terms of strategy and story, but requires major investment to overcome information overload. [May 2012, p.52]
  30. Apr 2, 2012
    65
    Perhaps this game would have been a blockbuster back in the days when all games required you to use your imagination to fill in the gaps where graphics and processing power weren't up to the task yet. And indeed, for those "gamers" who still pine for their Commodore 64's, Crusader Kings 2 may provide everything they would ever need. For those of us gaming in the year 2012, however, there just isn't enough here.
  31. Mar 1, 2012
    60
    But there's something mildly sadistic about Crusader Kings II's complexity and reach. Maybe even passively aggressively sadistic. I'm not saying it's not accessible, becuase it is, to an extent.
User Score
8.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 535 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 14 out of 161
  1. Jun 14, 2012
    10
    The best and the brightest paradox title: difficult, exciting and very satisfying in every part. the main goal is to help your name to survive to you, to write a story about your family. It is strange for a strategic game but every character lives...your wife, your sons, your ancestors, your enemies. This is a tale engine about a family. Your family. The blood is thicker than water, and playing this game you will discover it. Full Review »
  2. Feb 7, 2012
    10
    At the first glance very complex, but after 1h of tutorials you can get into the game. Amazing graphics, great sound, runs smooth, very complex political system, absolutely perfect! Full Review »
  3. Feb 9, 2012
    9
    After a string of (frankly) stinkers (SotS2 being the stinkiest and saddest stinker) we finally get a game worthy of the "old" Paradox name. I loved the original CK. It is a totally different sort of strategy. It is to Medieval strategy what Football manager is to the soccer genre. While Total War does the "Fifa 012" bit "Football Manager" is all about the people, their abilities and their relationships. Well same here.
    Crusader Kings 2 is a VERY sold and attractive game, it even co0mes with a decent tutorial (saints preserve us - Paradox realising that MAYBE some gamers don't want to spend 2-3 days working out what everything does - the challenge should be in PLAYING THE GAME...not WORKING OUT HOW TO PLAY THE GAME)..Anyway CK II sorts this out. The relationships are fantastic, the character traits very believable, the bloodlines mingle in ways that seem entirely realistic (you don't always get what you want - but you always understand why you end up with what you have) Pity it's almost Spring, this game could have kept me going all Winter. An excellent game - the best I've played in 2012 so far
    Full Review »