Metascore
91

Universal acclaim - based on 46 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 46 out of 46
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 46
  3. Negative: 0 out of 46
  1. Sep 9, 2020
    100
    In all aspects, this is the best version of a Grand Strategy game, far exceeding the second installment and, as controversial as it sounds, becoming the best candidate for strategy GOTY this year. A large number of mods (more than 100) and the fact that the game is never the same, no matter the starting options we choose, plus a community that is constantly active, all of this makes this a game that I would recommend to any fan of strategy games and RPGs.
  2. Aug 31, 2020
    100
    If there is one title that has the potential to absolutely trash your sleeping schedule, it’s Crusader Kings 3...As I finish this review, I’m massively sleep-deprived, and I blame you, Paradox.
  3. Aug 31, 2020
    100
    CK3 is a worthy successor that delivers a powerful mix of grand strategy and RPG gameplay. This is possibly the most polished a mainline Paradox title has ever been at launch.
  4. Aug 31, 2020
    100
    Crusader Kings 3 is my Game of the Year so far. If you’re looking for a new strategy title with some RPG flair that will suck you in for 500 hours or more during this endless lockdown, then it should be on your wishlist already. Better still, future support is already assured – there’s one expansion already in the works plus a few flavour packs coming soon if the huge base game isn’t enough for you.
  5. Aug 31, 2020
    100
    Crusader Kings 3 is so complex that even after hours of playing, you can still discover new features or uncover intricate systems you've not needed before. For those who want full control of a domain and dynasty, you won't be disappointed. Just be prepared to put a chunk of time into learning the ropes.
  6. Aug 31, 2020
    100
    Every detail of Crusader Kings III feels like the perfect evolution of the series. The refined systems and better UI don’t take away from the complexities of a campaign; they just make it easier to have fun. Every worry I had of this being a watered-down Crusader Kings II experience faded away with the sheer amount of content available. With a larger world, more refined systems, gorgeous visuals and deep character mechanics, Crusader Kings III is everything fans of the series could have hoped for – and more.
  7. Aug 31, 2020
    100
    Crusader Kings 3 is a superb strategy game, a great RPG, and a master class in how to take the best parts of existing systems and make them deeper and better. I have thousands of hours in the previous game, and I expect to spend at least that many in this third installment. All of the engrossingly flawed characters and stories of love, war, triumph, and loss that have already dynamically emerged from my playthroughs feel like just the beginning of something legendary. In fact, if I had to pick only one game to play for the rest of my life, the decision wouldn’t be that difficult. A new king of historical strategy has been crowned. Long live the king.
  8. Sep 9, 2020
    95
    Crusader Kings III is a title in almost all its aspects and it immediately Becomes one of the benchmarks of its genre. Its balance between the number of options and accessibility to these is superb, and if we add to this the emerging narrative that seems an inexhaustible source of continuous plots, stories and conspiracies, we have a title that borders on perfection. And the best thing is that it is not only for the most experienced in this genre, but for anyone who wants to start in it. For all these reasons, Crusader Kings III is an indispensable game for all lovers of palace stories beyond its perfect management and strategy.
  9. Sep 7, 2020
    95
    Crusader Kings 3 is one of the best strategy titles in recent years, hands down. The gameplay is extremely deep and the relationship between the characters and some neat RPG elements really help the game shine. The game is not flawless though, as the game's UI may be too complicated for some players and there is a slight lack of content, but nevertheless it's a solid strategy experience that can entertain you for many, many hours.
  10. Aug 31, 2020
    95
    Crusader Kings 3 is at the start of its own story - I'm estimating we're going to see around 300 DLCs for this beast before it's all said and done - and already through its clarity of interface and intelligent design decisions I can see years of amazing "OH MY GOD, you'll never guess what happened in CK3" moments clogging up Felix's email inbox as I continue on my own journey with this wonderful, wonderful game.
  11. Aug 31, 2020
    94
    Crusader Kings 3 is incredible. It's an irrepressible story engine that spits out a constant stream of compelling alt-histories, delightfully infuriating characters and social puzzles that I've become obsessed with unravelling. I can't imagine being done with it. I just subsist on digital drama now. Will Alfred finally leave the torture chamber and make a friend? What's Bjorn going to do now that he knows his wife is in love with his chancellor? And who's going to be committing patricide next? I need to spend less time writing reviews and more time with my dynasties.
  12. Aug 31, 2020
    92
    It’s clear that Crusader Kings is not a game for everyone. It’s dense, complex, at times slow, at other times overwhelming. But there’s a magic here, a storytelling generator that you won’t find anywhere else. It’s a series that already has a lot of fans, and I think those fans are going to agree with me when I declare Crusader Kings 3 the best Crusader Kings yet. There are also a lot of people who may become fans, and to them, I declare this game as easily the most accessible Crusader Kings. Not only is it a strange and wonderful experience, but it also promises to grow more exciting with future updates. You can’t get your Crusader Kings fix anywhere else, and Crusader Kings 3 takes the series to new heights.
  13. Aug 31, 2020
    91
    Crusader Kings III is an ideal sequel, which expands and modernizes the series' core gameplay without diluting its unique and addictive Grand Strategy character.
  14. Aug 31, 2020
    91
    Graphically beautiful, fun to play, intelligently designed, Crusader Kings III is one of the best entries in the long list of Paradox's grand strategy games.
  15. Sep 4, 2020
    90
    Crusader Kings III is a one-of-a-kind experience that mixes intrigue, the ambrosia of victory, and the devastating bitters of defeat.
  16. Sep 4, 2020
    90
    An excellent start for a beginner, and a great delve into the medieval period for history fanatics to boot.
  17. Sep 2, 2020
    90
    This is a much more accessible successor to the legendary medieval strategy, and still as deep as its forefather. There is certainly space for future expansions, but Crusader Kings 3, as it is now, is already capable of writing the most stunning stories imaginable under cruel feudalism.
  18. Sep 2, 2020
    90
    While Crusader Kings III has shortcomings and flaws, these are overshadowed by the sheer number of options and content thanks to its gigantic map and features. Greater emphasis is placed on a character's or dynasty's growth, a level of detail not seen in any previous grand strategy title, allowing you to experience trials and tribulations like never before.
  19. Sep 2, 2020
    90
    Crusader Kings III is the best Paradox Interactive grand strategy games to date and probably one of best strategy games ever made.
  20. Sep 1, 2020
    90
    This is the best Crusader Kings game we've had to date and is a must-have for any strategy or RPG fan.
  21. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    Crusader Kings III is a massive step up in all regards featuring many QoL changes and improvements. While some features, such as the character designer, are sorely missed, the major improvements, refinements, and the like, ensure that fans of the series will almost certainly enjoy the new title. While it is more welcoming to newcomers than prior entries, it may still be too dense for those not interested in the heavy political focus of the franchise.
  22. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    Crusader Kings 3 is the best looking and most accessible the series has ever been.
  23. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    Crusader Kings 3 is a smart sequel to one of the best grand strategy game ever made.
  24. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    Crusader Kings 3 is the perfect sequel to the masterpiece that CK2 was. Better interface, deeper mechanics, astounding production values make this title the best grand strategy game in the market.
  25. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    Without many words, Crusader Kings III is one of the best Paradox Interactive grand strategy games to date.
  26. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    Crusader Kings 3 is a compelling strategy game that deserves to be played. Paradox Development Studios outdid themselves on this one.
  27. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    Crusader Kings 3 is a fantastic entry in Paradox's historically-rooted strategy series. New RPG elements help to create a more engrossing character-driven experience, while lots of quality-of-life improvements make it more accessible and digestible to both Crusader Kings veterans and newcomers. There are still a couple of issues, such as as inconsistent AI-controlled allied armies, but this is still nonetheless one of the absolute best strategy games you can currently buy.
  28. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    The best way to think of Crusader Kings 3 as a sequel is in terms of its own dynastic gameplay. Sure, Paradox have started from scratch with a new game, but it's still full of scheming, warring amidst an impressive breadth of cultures and religions. Crusader Kings 3 is an heir that has been born from Crusader Kings 2 and its many expansions, including and improving on so much of what made that game great, but it can still grow and improve in its own right.
  29. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    Paradox has done it again. Once again they have created a brilliant grand strategy game. From murdering a child for their empire to forging your own religion, Crusader Kings III offers nearly limitless possibilities to define your dynasty. Truly a masterpiece.
  30. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    This review only skims a bit of what the game offers, as it’s incredibly complex. However, I feel like CK3 introduces its various systems in a much easier-to-grasp way than CK2 did. So, if you’ve been intimidated about Paradox’s grand strategy games, CK3 makes a new beginning that continues to provide all the fun of medieval intrigue, drama, and history, while making it a lot easier to pick up and play.
  31. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    Successfully modernises the medieval strategy series, preserving much of what's good and adding some interesting new ideas. While it still needs to iron out a few details, it's a worthy successor to the series' august crown.
  32. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    Crusader Kings III is an excellent kingdom management game, more intimate but no less intricate than the likes of Civilisation VI, it’s as unforgiving a simulation as you’re going to find while still being more fun than you’d expect it to be.
  33. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    As much as it remains a numbers-driven grand strategy game, Crusader Kings III masterfully paints a complex medieval world teeming with living characters that have desires and ambitions. Its mixture of familiar and evolved systems enhances its roleplaying and emergent storytelling potential. The actions that you perform always feel like they’re the result of a process or skill your characters have naturally gained and there’s always something to grab your attention. And so it did, as for 70+ hours we were completely absorbed by warfare, realm management and court intrigue, which, it turns out, we haven’t had enough of just yet.
  34. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    Crusader Kings 3 is not only a return to its franchise's grand range of gameplay, strategy, and storytelling, but also a massive and meaningful evolution with little to hold players back from exploration and discovery throughout an intricate web of rulers, dynasties, and statecraft.
  35. Aug 31, 2020
    90
    Crusader Kings III pulls off a difficult dual victory, bringing a new level of depth, charm, and polish to the franchise, while also making it far more approachable than before. Some aspects of Crusader Kings III still aren’t as user-friendly as they could be, but overall, this is a worthy heir to the throne.
  36. 90
    Crusader Kings III's near perfect marriage of robust grand strategy with compelling roleplaying means both tactical fans and storytelling aficionados will find something to love in its medieval world of politics and intrigue, whether that's crunching numbers to efficiently conquer the known world, or rolling with the punches as they scheme their way into the annals of history.
  37. Aug 31, 2020
    88
    Crusader Kings III is one of the best Paradox Development Studio’s games to date. Deep and compelling, this grand strategy can entertain you for dozens, if not hundreds of hours between its intrigues, holy wars, and dynasties in the making.
  38. Sep 9, 2020
    85
    Maybe it's not yet a masterpiece: in the future, who knows?
  39. Sep 4, 2020
    85
    Crusader Kings III is a great and very complex game that won't get boring anytime soon and has already become a staple of the genre. Despite that, Crusader Kings III requires more content (including the things cut out for future DLCs - not cool) and some fixes to be called a complete game.
  40. Aug 31, 2020
    83
    At its core, it's still the same game as Crusader Kings 2, for better and for worse. It's still highly complex and tells great stories. And despite the context system, it can still be incomprehensible and frustrating. It's a bit like the Holy Grail. It gives you eternal youth, but it does not make you another person.
  41. Sep 14, 2020
    82
    This is a complex Game of Patience: The global strategy slows the pace pleasently down, leading to royal roleplaying. This is downright good entertainment, even with the wars being a tad too static and some wishes unfulfilled.
  42. Aug 31, 2020
    80
    Crusader Kings III is the new noble management's king. Every little piece matters on the board, impressive and huge, but merciless with the newbie.
  43. Aug 31, 2020
    80
    In a sense, Crusader Kings 3 is all over the place. It doesn't always work perfectly, and at times it really makes you work for it, but there's something amazing in that any of it works at all. Strategy games can tell interesting stories as their empires rise and fall, but their procedural narratives are rarely as affecting and poignant as they are here.
  44. Aug 31, 2020
    80
    Crusader Kings III is a massively engaging grand strategy game, delivering beautiful visuals and a UI which is much more pleasing to the eyes when compared to the previous title.
  45. Aug 31, 2020
    80
    While not perfect, long-time fans of the series and newcomers previously intimidated by its complicated gameplay will be able to enjoy expanding their dynasties in Crusader Kings III for years to come.
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  1. Aug 31, 2020
    If I were to score it now, I’d give it a 5/5. But I’m not quite ready to do that. I need to try out a few more realms — especially one that sets my ruler up for an uphill challenge among fierce rivals. At this point, I do feel confident in saying this is the best Crusader Kings release yet. And I hope it just gets better over time.
  2. Aug 31, 2020
    I would recommend Crusader Kings III to Crusader Kings II fans, obviously. But also to Civilization and Total War fans. To people who play The Sims. Or visual novels. Or Bioware RPGS. That’s testament to how wild and untamed this game’s scope it, but also how successful it is in delivering on the promise of wrapping it all up into a single cohesive offering. Crusader Kings III may begin in what we used to call the Dark Ages, but it’s a Renaissance for strategy gaming in 2020.
  3. Sep 1, 2020
    After more than 40 hours with Crusader Kings 3, I still find myself learning more and more about its systems with every passing moment. I’ve restarted my playthrough of the Canossa line three different times now, and each time it feels more and more like I’m coming to grips with how Matilda — and the game as a whole — needs to be played. As with any great RPG, I can feel my grip on the storyline tightening over time. I’m looking forward to the dozens, if not hundreds, of more hours yet to come.
  4. I think I’ll need another year of playing it to work out exactly what I think of it, but that’s another way of saying I want to play it for a year, so it must be pretty good.
  5. Aug 31, 2020
    Crusader Kings III is massively, powerfully alive. You can almost feel it pulsing when you play it. Often, deep into the third, fourth, fifth hour of play, I'd realize I wasn't so much playing it as watching it develop.
User Score
8.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 220 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 29 out of 220
  1. Sep 2, 2020
    10
    Wonderfully crafted game that will only get better with age and DLC :) Some annoying things from CK2 are gone but they have managed to notWonderfully crafted game that will only get better with age and DLC :) Some annoying things from CK2 are gone but they have managed to not dumb it down which is great! New Menu and tooltip layout will take some getting used to but overall its a huge step forward. Characters are wonderful and you definitely feel more involved controlling their destiny. Full Review »
  2. Sep 2, 2020
    8
    Probably the best "base" game Paradox has released. It's still not near CK2, but has a really solid foundation to build on.
  3. Sep 2, 2020
    2
    One of the most disappointing games for me, after dumping in 1.6k hours in Ck2, 600 hours in EUIV and 300 hours in Vicky 2, this and imperatorOne of the most disappointing games for me, after dumping in 1.6k hours in Ck2, 600 hours in EUIV and 300 hours in Vicky 2, this and imperator really left a bitter taste in my mouth. The game is dumbed down to an unbelievable extent. There are not enugh map modes, no economic mapmode or no direct vassals mapmode, what the hell were they thinking, character finder doesn't have a would join court option, can't wait for these to be added in later as DLCs. Armies are a joke, they weren't that complex in ck2 either, but they did the trick, here they're a complete joke, no more left flank,center and right flank commander based on their traits as such you just put one dude with high martial and you're good to go, yet another proof of them dumbing down the game to make it more and more casual to try and appeal to the mythical wider audience. Navies are gone, that's right. We're back to the absolute whack system in CK1, where the army of a large landlocked empire can just pull a fleet out of their asses, sure the CK2 system had some flaws regarding fleets, but atleast there was some plannign around it in early game.This feels like a massive opportunity for them to throw in row men row dlc. Remember when paradox used to throw shade at civilization and Rome 2 total war for having soldiers that turn into ships, oh how the mighty have fallen. Actually speaking of which this feels like a really bad rip off of civilization merged with sims and a bit of previous titles from paradox, literally the worst of all them. I found the music extremly boring and generic and got tired of it really fast (2 hours of playtime to be more exact). The interface looks boring and bland and it's a complete pain in the ass to navigate through, with subemenus hidden inside submenus and such as opposed to CK2, where you just had all the menus displayed on the main screen. The keybindings for map modes, yet another thing that you can't change it's annoying as hell, in CK2 they were all keybound to q,w,e,r,t,y in the order they were displayed, now it's an absolute **** there, and you will have an easier time just clicking on them. All in all terrible experience for any veteran player of grand strategies around here. Avoid this all together, get the original CK2 for free and spend the rest of your money on dlcs, it's a much better deal.
    Also another, note: This piece of **** shouldn't have been made in the first place, when the original ck2 was still perfectly functional and up to date, how about that god damn victoria 3, paradox? But unfortunately, paradox seems to follow ea's bussiness model with sims. Milk the hell out of a game for years and years, then release a new game that's only a minor graphical upgrade while being barebones in any other category.
    Terrible experience once again, worse than march of the eagles or imperator. Everythign that made the predecessor fun has been sacrificed on the alter of accessibility for the casual player, who'll buy this, play for 6 or 8 hours or so and then quit never to touch it again
    Full Review »