Explore one of the defining periods in world history in an experience crafted by the masters of Grand Strategy.
User reviews: Overwhelmingly Positive (7,929 reviews)
Release Date: Feb 14, 2012

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Buy Paradox Grand Strategy Collection

Includes 4 items: Crusader Kings II, Europa Universalis IV, Hearts of Iron III, Victoria II

Buy Crusader Kings II Collection

Includes 43 items: Crusader Kings II, Crusader Kings II: African Portraits , Crusader Kings II: African Unit Pack, Crusader Kings II: Byzantine Unit Pack , Crusader Kings II: Celtic Portraits, Crusader Kings II: Celtic Unit Pack, Crusader Kings II: Customization Pack, Crusader Kings II: Dynasty Shield II, Crusader Kings II: Dynasty Shield III, Crusader Kings II: Dynasty Shields, Crusader Kings II: Europa Universalis IV Converter, Crusader Kings II: Finno-Ugric Unit Pack, Crusader Kings II: Hymns of Abraham, Crusader Kings II: Hymns to the Old Gods, Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome , Crusader Kings II: Mediterranean Portraits, Crusader Kings II: Military Orders Unit Pack, Crusader Kings II: Mongol Faces, Crusader Kings II: Norse Portraits, Crusader Kings II: Norse Unit Pack, Crusader Kings II: Persian Portraits, Crusader Kings II: Persian Unit Pack, Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India, Crusader Kings II: Ruler Designer, Crusader Kings II: Russian Portraits, Crusader Kings II: Russian Unit Pack, Crusader Kings II: Saxon Unit Pack, Crusader Kings II: Songs of Albion, Crusader Kings II: Songs of Byzantium , Crusader Kings II: Songs of Faith, Crusader Kings II: Songs of India, Crusader Kings II: Songs of Prosperity, Crusader Kings II: Songs of the Caliph, Crusader Kings II: Songs of the Holy Land, Crusader Kings II: Songs of the Rus, Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham, Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion, Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam, Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods, Crusader Kings II: The Republic, Crusader Kings II: Turkish Portraits, Crusader Kings II: Turkish Unit Pack, Crusader Kings II: Warriors of Faith Unit Pack

Downloadable Content For This Game


Recommended By Curators

"An unforgettable wander through the bastions, banquet halls and bedchambers of Medieval Europe."
Read the full review here.

Recent updates View all (21)

November 18

Never doubt yourself!

Do you have an idea for a Crusader Kings II inspired motivational post? Then please come on over and post it on our facebook page.

Thank you for playing Crusader Kings II!!!

12 comments Read more

November 18

Crusader Kings II - 2.2.1 PATCH RELEASED - Checksum DPOO

Hi all!

After a thorough open beta phase we are now ready to unleash version 2.2.1 to the world! In fact, we've already done so! Should you not have received the prompt to update your client then just restart Steam to grab the latest update.

We made a whole host of tweaks and changes across the board, so many in fact that it makes Steam's character limit tremble in fear. As such, please click the link below for the full patch notes!


15 comments Read more


“...playing is winning, and there’s something quite satisfying about leading your house to power and glory through whatever means you can, for as long as you can.”
9,5/10 – Strategy Informer

“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.”
90/100 – IncGamers

“It's perfectly possible to have made a few too many enemies, anger the Pope and find most of Europe out for your blood. That's really what makes the game so damn fun.”
9/10 – Destructoid

About This Game

The Dark Ages might be drawing to a close, but Europe is still in turmoil. Petty lords vie against beleaguered kings who struggle to assert control over their fragmented realms. The Pope calls for a Crusade to protect the Christians in the Holy Land even as he refuses to relinquish control over the investiture of bishops - and their riches. Now is the time for greatness. Expand your demesne and secure the future of your dynasty. Fill your coffers, appoint vassals, root out traitors and heretics, introduce laws and interact with hundreds of nobles, each with their own agenda.
A good lord will always need friends to support him. But beware, as loyal vassals can quickly turn to bitter rivals, and some might not be as reliable as they seem... Stand ready, and increase your prestige until the world whispers your name in awe. Do you have what it takes to become a Crusader King?
Crusader Kings II explores one of the defining periods in world history in an experience crafted by the masters of Grand Strategy. Medieval Europe is brought to life in this epic game of knights, schemes, and thrones...

Key features:

  • Start a game at any point between 1066 and 1337 and play until 1453
  • Pick a Christian lord and make sure his dynasty survives as you play a succession of his descendants through the ages
  • Gain Prestige for every successive character you play, furthering the glory of your Dynasty
  • Expand your feudal domain - and keep it from falling apart
  • Unravel the plots of your courtiers and vassals, each with their own opinions and agendas
  • Take up the Cross and fight the Moor, the Heathen and the Heretic.
  • Defend against the onslaught of the Mongol Horde
  • Struggle with the Pope for control of the bishops
  • Relive the Middle Ages with up to 32 other players in a competitive multiplayer mode

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS: XP/Vista/Windows 7
    • Processor: Intel® Pentium® IV 2.4 GHz or AMD 3500+
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Hard Disk Space: 2 GB
    • Video Card: NVIDIA® GeForce 8800 or ATI Radeon® X1900, 512mb graphics memory required.
    • DirectX®: 9.0c
    • Sound: Direct X-compatible sound card
    • Additional: 3-button mouse and keyboard
    • OS: Mac OS X 10.6.8 or later
    • Processor: Intel Core Duo Processor (2GHz or better)
    • Memory: 2 GB RAM
    • Hard Disk Space: 2 GB
    • Video Card: ATI Radeon HD 6750 / NVIDIA GeForce 320 / NVIDIA GeForce
      9600 or higher, 1024MB graphics memory required
    • OS: Ubuntu 12.04 LTS
    • Processor: IntelR PentiumR IV 2.4 GHz or AMD 3500+
    • Memory: 2 GB
    • Hard disk space: 2 Gb
    • Video Card: ATI Radeon HD 6750 / NVIDIA GeForce 320 / NVIDIA GeForce
      > 9600 or higher, 1024MB graphics memory required.
Helpful customer reviews
240 of 269 people (89%) found this review helpful
1,152.7 hrs on record
Posted: October 25
I haven't played this game that much, but it's pretty solid.

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119 of 125 people (95%) found this review helpful
435.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 2
At the age of 16, my character developed a mad crush on a local girl. He crept into her room and banged her, then declared he loved her. 9 months later she gave birth to a child, he decided he didn't like it, smothered this child in its crib, pushed his lover off a balcony and then married a horny Greek princess and did it all over again until he commited suicide at the age of 72 because his son turned gay after coming back from a visit to Constantinople. Brilliant!
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68 of 72 people (94%) found this review helpful
134.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 3
best incest simulator of the decade

10/10 would lannister more
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55 of 65 people (85%) found this review helpful
1.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 15
Click for Gameplay Trailer - Preview
+ pleasant world map
+ pretty menus
- spartan combat animations
- low-detail world

+ authentic and well-researched middle ages
+ building personal relationships is an engrossing endeavor

+ appropriate music pieces
- no voice output
- thin soundscape

+ five levels of difficulty
+ helpful tutorial
- initially much "trial and error"

+ countless noble personalities
+ dynasty family tree
+ conscripts and mercenaries
- few units on the map

Endless Game:
+ surprising events
+ intrigue
+ every time another course of history

Game Size:
+ around 100 hours
+ four campaigns
+ huge replay value
+ multiplayer mode

That's it though: Once be a famous king who defends his power, intrigue spins and defeated rivals! Crusader Kings 2 of Paradox offers exclusive to the medieval job now, where you have to manage your own particular family in real time. Prepares the ruling also joy? Thousands of years of warfare, culture clashes, technological advances, political upheaval and intrigue.

There are no tangible goal, be found in Crusader Kings II. Your task is simply the patchwork of feudal states, Europe and the Mediterranean in the Middle Ages, however you include and expand to take your power desired. After you choose a starting point somewhere 1066-1337 to play, like any head of state long ago absorbed from the ruler of the Holy Roman Empire to the king of a tiny area of a larger nation.
Relationships are really tricky things and in Crusader Kings II, but they are the core of the game. Like other nobles you see both in your own area as well as internationally, affects the actions you can take and how efficient you are as a ruler. You can manipulate others through a variety of methods.
In your own yard can be the people providing titles or honors and landed every character, regardless of which court they are, have their own ambitions that you can help them with. If you want to befriend the widowed King of Poland, you can offer him one of your beautiful daughters.
You will get an alliance (marriage is the only way you can to make such relations), and if they both have the ambition marriage, you're going to make them even happier. If you succeed it makes you as a puppeteer at the highest level to feel.

While you sit tight and play the role of a pacifist, the best way to build your dynasty is about to overtake other areas and expand the boundaries of your kingdom. This task usually requires a careful combination of diplomacy, intrigue and all-out military conflict.
Building an army is an expensive proposition in Crusader Kings II, so you need a robust economy before you spend money on new training structures in your various holdings. Likewise, maintaining an active army that is called up to war adds a big cost to your monthly expenses, making it easy to dip into the red and burn through your gold reserves in a hurry.

The handful of events you can cause through decisions are always the same and after you've held a couple of feasts and tournaments they stop being very memorable, they just become a way for you to potentially augment your stats. They are welcome diversions and thanks to the random nature of the game the outcomes frequently differ even if you've witnessed the event several times before, but I can't help but wish there was more variety.

But don't let that discourage you from giving it a go because even in spite of its learning curve, Crusader Kings II is absolutely worth the time investment. Playing the game against real people adds a lot of excitement, whether coordinating with human allies in a combined war effort or rubbing their noses in a failed assassination attempt.

It is that the scale and potential for an entertaining story after another, the Crusader Kings II make so captivating. There are so many small interactions to allow you to experience for a payout and so much potential, if your planning and scheming finally come to fruition. 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. An intense learning curve, but a unique strategy experience.

Score: 82 / 100

Sorry for my bad english. This is my review account, because the low playtime.
Thanks for reading! If you Like my Review, give me a Thumbs up in Steam.
Your help is greatly appreciated :)

My Curator Page: Sub
My Steam Group: GameTrailers and Reviews
My YouTube Channel: Steam Reviews
Was this review helpful? Yes No
41 of 45 people (91%) found this review helpful
8.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 2
Married my 4 month old son to a 68 year old to improve diplomatic relations.

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27 of 27 people (100%) found this review helpful
138.7 hrs on record
Posted: October 26
Some jealous neighbour pressed a fabricated claim on one of my counties. I had his 4yo only heir killed in a plot and married his daughter to my heir. Take that, sucker. 10/10
Was this review helpful? Yes No
34 of 41 people (83%) found this review helpful
14.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 28
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20 of 21 people (95%) found this review helpful
86.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
Just minding my own business down in the little duchy of Serbia when three royal marriages and two feasts later I get a notification that I have inherited the entire kingdom of Denmark.

This game, with all of its DLCs for its full potential, is absolutely brilliant in that it brings character customisation and character development to a whole new level. Certainly different from the other Paradox Interactive franchises but in the best way possible. Each Paradox Interactive grand strategy has their own unique focus of gameplay which corresponds accurately to the time period and Crusader Kings II has definitely nailed it with their focus on indepth feudal systems and royal relations.

10/10 - IGN
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16 of 18 people (89%) found this review helpful
234.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 26
10/10 Would assassinate someshucks children again.
Was this review helpful? Yes No
16 of 18 people (89%) found this review helpful
28.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 12
They killed my son, the perfect child of a 300 years of eugenics-tier breeding and conditioning...

So I burned their Empire to the GROUND.

10/10 Eugenics Sim. Beautiful.
Was this review helpful? Yes No
13 of 14 people (93%) found this review helpful
338.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 31
killed my wife 10/10
Was this review helpful? Yes No
11 of 11 people (100%) found this review helpful
615.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 13
I was a bit unsure at first, but my friends talked me into buying this to play online. I am now still playing long after they stopped. I just can't get enough of playing this as there are so many people to play as in different time periods. I'm not sure the latest patch has helped or hindered the experience, but the ironman mode makes it a real challenge. Seriously if you haven't tried this game, there are so many different things to keep people interested. It's a shame it stops at 1453 each time, but with the extra DLC starting earlier and earlier there is so much more to do. Serious press buy! :)
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11 of 11 people (100%) found this review helpful
1,302.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 15
I no longer see people. I only see tools that I can use to further my own ends. Friends? Pfah! They will wear a smile on their face as they twist the knife in your back. Family? All envious of my position and willing to eat eachother just for a chance at my crown. Children? More tools in my political war chest to use as I see fiUURRRRRK...

Welp, My pops is dead. Guess that makes me king now.
Sooo... Who wants cake?
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8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
436.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 5
Love this game and it's endless replayability. The DLC's are ok, a couple of really solid ones, but is the mods that really shine. Game of Thrones fan? Mod for that (which I personally believe is better than the base game). Elder Scrolls fan? Mod for that (its decent, not as well developed as the game of thrones one). Want to play in a post-apocalyptic America and pretend its Fallout? You bet your ♥♥♥ there's a mod for that.
Go get this game
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7 of 7 people (100%) found this review helpful
147.4 hrs on record
Posted: October 27
I would totally recommend this game. I picked it up on a weekend sale and have be pleased. I like the way it makes you think and all the little things to watch. Unlilke games like Civ, which I love, you can lose your country to revolt and such.
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7 of 8 people (88%) found this review helpful
717.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 4
I've attempted to review this game multiple times, but each time I do more content is released. So this will be my final review on Crusader Kings 2, which I've now logged over 700 hours into.

While the Civilization series may get all the love, Crusader Kings 2 is a more in depth (and harder to master) "Grand strategy" game. It's also, in my opinion, severely underrated - though that may be due to it's learning curve. It's not really easy to explain just what this game does because it's so unique. It's the Sims mixed with Civilization. You are not controling a nation here, it's all about your dynasty.

I'm going to ask you a serious question right now. Have you ever thought about raising a demonic spawn from an infant and one day seeing said child take the throne of a nation while, the next day, sending an army of pagan witches at her enemies? The same demonic child that killed her nanny when she was 13? How would you like to feed cows to a demonic hole in the ground to satisfy it's hunger? And while those events may be rare (and in text form), they do happen.

That's what makes Crusader Kings 2 unique. At any point during any time period in the game almost anything can happen. And indeed it does. The game likes to find ways to screw with you. Did you just spend 2 hours grooming your heir? Oops he died. Now his half ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ dwarf brother has taken his place and your nation is in all out revolt the second your character dies.

Do you want to built the greatest nation on Earth? Do it. How about restore the Roman Empire? Good luck. How about turn Britian into a muslim empire? Yep. Now you see why I have over 700 hours in this game. And when you're done you can import your save to EU4 and continue on.

So what's the down side? It's going to take a while to learn how to play this game (the right way). It's not something you jump into and know what you're doing. The fact is, you're probably going to be completely confused for a long time. And that's a big negative. But once you grasp it's system you'll never look at games like Civilization the same.

The DLC is another issue. There is simply too much content for this game (and it keeps coming!) and the entry price to obtain it all is rather high. I recommend waiting for a sale and buying it all at once, vanilla Crusader Kings 2 just isn't the same.

If you're at all interested in strategy games, history in general or even the sims you owe it to yourself to give this game a shot. It's not for everyone, but for those who give it the time it needs to grow on you, there's nothing else like it. And that's not even mentioning the mods (like Game of Thrones).

Solid 9/10

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5 of 5 people (100%) found this review helpful
8.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 9
Made my sister the court jester, got invaded by a 3 year old, had almost every human being hate me, poisoned woman's husband and had her fall in love with me.

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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
41.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 9
The genius of this game is that it tackles grand strategy on a personal level, giving real weight to the characters in your game using nothing but numbers and statistics. That is more valuable to me then anything Europa Universalis has to offer.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
112.0 hrs on record
Posted: November 3
A wonderfully rich and immersive historical strategy game. Deep and realistic, if you're into this kind of game, this masterpiece is absolutely a must-buy
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
261.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 26
Just... if you have a life, stay away from this game.

Imagine taking the Sims. Now, make every character in the Sims religious and despising every one else that's not their religion. Then make them ten times more evil. Now, give them an inordinate amount of power and make them kings of lands stretching from Iceland to Bengal. Add a sprinkle of chaos and human interference, and you have Crusader Kings II.

You control a king or doge and guide his actions and rulership. Be a tyrant, be a ruler of a docile disposition. Just keep a hold of your vassals, win the elections, and make sure to kill that kid that has a claim on your title.

Often events pop up that give you options. However, the effects of your decision are neatly laid out for you, meaning there is little sense of randomness of what happens. You pick the thing with the best effect. The events are sometimes repetitive, and you always usually end up choosing one option throughout all your playthroughs.

Although there are characters with traits and personalities, you as a player will, unless you diliberately keep your character's traits in mind, play to your own wants and needs of the game, not what the character you are controlling will want. The game's overall very fun, but lacking in documentation, and for a Strategy/RPG, does little to encourage the RPG side of things.

The game's tone is usually serious and historical, but occasionally tongue-in-cheek. (especially if you get the lunatic trait) Sometimes, especially with DLC, the game can become fantasy or simply ridiculous (e.g., in Sunset Invasion the New World, more specifically the Aztecs, can colonize the old world, instead of the other way around. In The Sons of Abraham you can father or mother the spawn of Satan unknowingly. Unknowingly, that is, until he kills your entire family, leaving him as the only heir, then killing you and taking your throne.)

In some ways this game is "How to be an evil ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ 101". It has a freaking "evil plan" mechanic for crying out loud! In others it's also "How to be a Radical 101". Christians can go on Crusades, Muslims on Jihads and everyone else on Genericly named "Great Holy Wars".

This game is also great if you like Game of Thrones. Murder? Check! Incest? Check! Anyone can die, no matter how important? Double-check.

I'd recommend this game to the following people:
Evil ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥s
Religious Radicals
Strategy Fans
Paradox Interactive Fans
Game-of-Thrones Fans
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