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Legends of Crusader Kings 3 aims to make grand strategy approachable

Paradox has launched a new initiative to introduce players to a few of the colorful rulers who make up Crusader Kings 3's complex political web.

There’s a good chance you’ve heard about Crusader Kings 3, and that’s probably because players who love it (like me) rarely stop talking about it. However, like the rest of Paradox Development Studio’s grand strategy catalog, it can feel overwhelming at first – there’s just so much to take in that starting out can be daunting. Well, good news: Paradox has launched a new effort to introduce some of the notable leaders featured in the game in a way that makes picking up their stories feel a bit more manageable – and maybe even exciting.

Legends of Crusader Kings III highlights five of the most popular starting characters in the massive grand strategy game, providing some biographical information as context for a particular playstyle. For example, there’s Robert, Duke of Apulia. He began his career as a brigand, and his path to power is one of conquest and consolidation, potentially allowing him to form the kingdom of Sicily. This new tool provides some pointers on the martial lifestyle and how to approach the game if you begin with this character.

Crusader Kings 3 isn’t all about war though – many characters are better suited to lives of political intrigue and subterfuge. That’s more the style of Emir Yahya, the Duke of Toledo. Starting with this character means taking on the Iberian kings who have supplanted Yahya’s family, using skullduggery and the intrigue lifestyle to even the playing field.

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This is a terrific little intro for anyone who’s ever considered themselves Crusader Kings-curious but has balked at the gigantic map covered with shifting borders and marching armies. It’s true there’s a lot of information flying around in Crusader Kings 3, but the key to understanding it is in realizing that you only have to make decisions for one particular person at a time. At its heart, it’s a role-playing game, and Legends of Crusader Kings 3 helps bring that aspect into sharper focus.

In addition to Duke Robert and Emir Yahya, Legends of Crusader Kings 3 also introduces new players to Petty King Murchad of Munster, Duchess Matilda of Tuscany, and Duke Vratislav of Bohemia. All of them make excellent starts for beginning players, and these capsule introductions can help shape your initial goals with a new campaign.

We have a few recommendations of our own when it comes to the best Crusader Kings 3 starting characters – although some of these are more suitable for players who’ve gotten some experience under their belts. We’ve also made a list of some of the best Crusader Kings 3 mods, if you want to get extra creative.

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