Victoria 3’s Civil War can begin with the North seceding

Union soldiers with bayonets fixed on their rifles charge a Confederate line on a hilltop in artwork created for Victoria 3.

The American Civil War ran from 1861-1865, putting it squarely inside upcoming grand strategy game Victoria 3’s timeframe. This time around, Paradox Interactive is addressing the pivotal conflict head on, with some thoughtful new mechanics and events that deal with the history of the Civil War as it happened, while letting players decide how they want to handle affairs.

The latest Victoria 3 dev diary lays it all out rather elegantly. Because of the attention that’s been paid to systems like interest groups and economics, it seems Victoria 3 will be able to simulate the circumstances leading up to the Civil War without bending the already existing rules. The issue begins with slavery, which Paradox has already discussed in an earlier diary. Slave labour benefits specific pops in your nation, like Aristocrats, and these folks will be interested in seeing it persist.

However, if you begin a game as the United States, you’ll have a journal entry for the Slavery Debate active from the start. This will track your progress in managing the conflict between pro-slavery groups and the growing abolitionist movement in the country.

Through the journal entry events and your own decisions as leader, you’ll be choosing which national interest groups to support and which to suppress. Depending on your decisions, tensions between abolitionists and pro-slavery groups could escalate faster or slower, leading to a different start date for the war. If the US winds up being too supportive of slavery, it’s even possible for an abolitionist bloc of northern states to secede from a “union” of slave-owning southern states, creating a wholly alternate Civil War.

We’re still not sure when the Victoria 3 release date is going to be, but we’re looking forward to getting our hands on this multi-layered historical sandbox when it arrives.