At GDC this year Paradox was promising strategy for players no matter what they were interested in. For the player who wanted to fine tune realistic Second World War combat, or wished to groom a race of cyborgs for alien domination to those that wanted to see Eastern dynasties rise on the stage of history or name the streets and roads they’ve built, Paradox had something for everyone.
The Mass Transit DLC for Cities: Skylines will please the hobby civic planner, giving players the opportunity to direct traffic and create easier means for their citizens to go about their days in their digital cities. This expansion will let players create cable cars, boats, monorails, and blimps, constructing travel means that will get their city-dwellers through different types of terrain and environments. Not only this, but players will be given capabilities to direct car traffic for those who don’t want to use the wonderful public transit systems they’ve just built.
Those who aren’t quite ready to make the leap to creating transit throughout their cities will be getting a free update near to its release, though, one that will let players customize the names of their streets.
For those more interested in a little history as opposed to city-building, the newly-announced Steel Division: Normandy 44 should offer some complex lessons in vehicles, weapons, and locations from the Second World War. Steel Division is an RTS game with a focus on historically accurate units, taking intense research on vehicles, artillery, troops, locations, and more and putting it to work in a tactical setting.
History buffs will be able to strut their stuff in combat, watching as the front shifts in real time through a blanket of colour, showing exactly how the player’s meticulously-placed units and planned attacks are changing ownership of the battlefield. Players will need to take care to know that battlefield well, using buildings, fields, and even hedges to their advantage, as well as implementing the real strengths and weaknesses of these historical units to their advantage in matches that could pit up to twenty players against one another.
Should players prefer their history to be a little older, Paradox’s Mandate of Heaven DLC for Europa Universalis IV will take them to the age of Bushido, granting them some new mechanics in the East Asian areas of Japan and China.
In this expansion, players work to unite fractured countries through various means. In China, players will be able to bolster their rule using tributaries, which call upon neighbouring countries to pay tribute with gold, warriors, or monarchy points.
Japan can create some other nice benefits to themselves as well as they draw the various Daimyos together, with players able to call for some minor rivals to commit seppuku to restore their honour. However, holding onto all these different areas, each with their own ruling classes, may prove to be quite a challenge itself.
Players can also cast their strategic talents into the far future with Stellaris: Utopia. Stellaris: Utopia will offer players some new places to build amongst the stars, letting them spend a few decades creating huge structures that can turn an entire star into a new world to live on. However, turning a star into a world to live on, as well as gaining the power boost it offers, tends to draw the attention of neighbouring worlds that might not appreciate the player’s advancements.
Players can also do some work closer to home to keep their people happy, or simply impose happiness on them. They can try out a new hive mind build, eliminating the troubles that free will brings, or switch their chosen race into cyborgs, eventually shifting them over to complete machines should they wish to get rid of biological issues that may be causing them trouble. Players can also experiment with being extremely xenophobic with a new trait, one that will grant huge benefits in combat while cutting off any connection to other races.
Whether the player is looking to explore the past with precision, the future with an iron fist, or help some people get to work on time, Paradox hopes to grant them the ability to exercise their strategic will at GDC.