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Europa Universalis IV

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Europa Universalis IV Box Art.

Europa Universalis IV (abbreviated EU4 or EUIV) is a grand strategy computer game created by Paradox Development Studio and published by Paradox Interactive. It was released for the PC on Windows, OS X, and Linux on 13 August, 2013.

Much of the game's setting is based in the historical era of initial European exploration and colonization of the New World. The game opens at the tail end of the Hundred Years' War and the decline of the Byzantine Empire and continues through to the revolutionary periods of the United States and France, and concludes a few years after the end of the Napoleonic Wars. Players assume control of a nation, seeking glory through exploration, trade, warfare and diplomacy, dramatically altering the course of history in the process.

The 4X genre

EU4 is within the "4X" genre of games, because it permits a player to 'explore,' 'expand,' 'exploit' and 'exterminate.' Players can choose to play single-player mode versus the AI, or multiplayer over a LAN or the Internet against a mix of human and AI opponents.

  • Exploration is dealt with by the use of terra incognita covering much of the world at game start. Players must hire explorers and conquistadors to travel into the unknown parts of the world. Or, after sufficient time has past, world geography may be revealed as common knowledge through events.
  • Expansion is dealt with through a few different mechanics. Players may diplomatically gain territory, which can lead to the inheritance of an entire country. They may also militarily conquer territory through warfare. Revolts of nearby provinces can also add territory to your nation if you share a common cause, such as having the same culture as the revolutionaries. Lastly, territory can also be gained as part of a program of colonization.
  • Exploitation of the world is accomplished mostly through the management of your national economy and the control of international trade. Players can also make exploits through the use of espionage.
  • Extermination, a euphemism for warfare, can be conducted on both land and sea. Land armies and naval fleets can engage in battles, led by generals and admirals. The successful conduct of a war is measured through war score. Upon reaching a certain threshold in war score, the loser can sue for peace or the winner may be able to impose their own peace terms, which may include outright conquest and annexation.

Game features

  • Take your own decisions: Nation building is flexible: decide your own form of government, the structure of your society, trade politics and more. The possibilities are endless.
  • Use your Monarch Power: Experience the new system of monarch power where your spread of choices is influence by the caliber of the man you have at the top. Do you have a warrior King? Then it is time to make war.
  • Experience history coming to life: The great people and personalities of the past are on hand to support you. Thousands of historical events guide you, with unique different flavor depending on the country you play. Have more than a thousand historical leaders and over 4000 historical Monarchs at your disposal.
  • The world is now your playground: Players can enjoy over 300 years of gameplay in a lush topographic map in full 3D. Lead any one of more than 250 countries that originally existed during the game’s extensive time span.
  • Experience the all new trade system: The trade system adds a new dimension to the great trade empires of the period. Seize control of key ports to expand your trade, support it with your powerful fleet and the wealth of the world will flow to you.
  • Bring out your diplomatic skills: Deeper diplomatic gameplay, with coalitions, threats, fleet basing rights and detailed support for rebels. Introducing unilateral opinions, a country may dislike you, but you can be neutral towards them.
  • Engage in Multiplayer: Battle against your friends or try co-operative multiplayer mode that allows several players to work together to control a single nation for up to 32 players. Featuring hotjoin, improved chat, new matchmaking server and support for a standalone server.
  • Create your own history & customize your game: Europa Universalis IV gives you the chance to customize and mod practically anything your heart may desire.


Paradox chose 11 important dates in history as starting points (called "scenarios" or "bookmarks") for campaigns. However, players are free to chose any date in the historical period covered as their own launching point for a game.

Technical information

The game was developed on the Clausewitz 2.5 Engine, which it shares in common with Crusader Kings II. It is available for both Microsoft Windows PCs, Macintosh OS X and Linux operating systems.

System requirements

As taken from the EU4 manual. In most cases, the "minimum system requirements" are the same as the "recommended system requirements" except as noted below.

Microsoft Windows

  • Versions: XP/Vista/Windows 7/Windows 8
  • Processor: Intel® Pentium® IV 2.4 GHz or AMD 3500+
  • Memory: 2 GB RAM
  • Hard disk space: 2 GB HD Space
  • Graphics: NVIDIA® GeForce 8800 or ATI Radeon® X1900, 1024mb video memory recommended (512mb video memory required minimum)
  • Sound Card: Direct X-compatible soundcard
  • DirectX®: 9.0c
  • Controller support: 3-button mouse, keyboard and speakers
  • Special multiplayer requirements: Internet Connection or LAN for multiplayer
  • Multiplayer: Up to 32 other players in multiplayer mode

Macintosh OS X

  • Versions: 10.6.8 or better
  • Processor: Intel Core Duo Processor (2 GHz 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.
  • Additional: GLSL 1.3, OpenGL 2.1
  • Controller support: "3-button mouse," keyboard and speakers
  • Special multiplayer requirements: Internet Connection or LAN for multiplayer
  • Multiplayer: Up to 32 other players in multiplayer mode


  • Versions: Ubuntu 12.04 LTS
  • Processor: Intel Core Duo Processor (2 GHz 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.
  • Additional: GLSL 1.3, OpenGL 2.1
  • Controller support: 3-button mouse, keyboard and speakers
  • Special multiplayer requirements: Internet Connection or LAN for multiplayer
  • Multiplayer: Up to 32 other players in multiplayer mode

Developer diaries

Developer Diaries are articles, often accompanied by videos, published by Paradox to describe the game design in detail.

Base Game developer diaries

No. Title and Link Description Date
Developer Diary Archive List of all developer diaries
0 Our Vision Design goals 31-08-2012
1 The world is at your feet Map of the world: interface consideration for province shapes, projection, colors, terrain, seasons, etc. 07-09-2012
2 The purge & all cards on the table Purging outdated systems and new design ideas 14-09-2012
3 Your envoys are awaiting your orders! Envoys: diplomats, missionaries, merchants and colonists 21-09-2012
4 Your Economy is about to change Income, Expenses, Stability, no "Minting" (as in EUIII), Loans 28-09-2012
5 The Return of the Kings Rulers, Monarchs and power, Heirs, Advisors 04-10-2012
6 Do you have any idea about it? Idea Groups, National Ideas, and Ideas Interface 12-10-2012
7 And did those feet in ancient time.... England and Dynamic Historical Events: War of the Roses and English Civil War, War of Captain Jenkin's Ear and The Muscovy Trade Company; plus national ideas, missions and decisions 19-10-2012
8 With God on Your Side? Religion: unique abilities for Catholic, Orthodox, Sunni & Shia, religious unity now visible, and new religion interface 26-10-2012
9 It's a rich man's world... Trade system: trade nodes, merchants, trade power, trade mission, supply and demand, trade efficiency, trade range, trade steering, trade income, and mercantilism 02-11-2012
10 It all belongs to Mother Russia... Russia: strategic possibilities, dynamic historical events (Time of Troubles, Grand Embassy for Westernization), missions and decisions, national ideas; army tradition and navy tradition changes 09-11-2012
11 The Cost & Reward for Technology Technology investment and cost, Administrative, Diplomatic and Military technologies defined. Plus a related video developer diary. 16-11-2012
12 Dominium Maris Baltici Sweden: strategic possibilities, dynamic historical events (The Dacke Feud and The Age of Liberty), missions, decisions, national ideas; plus stability changes from EUIII 23-11-2012
13 FREEEDOM! Rebels, their causes and mitigation: stability, government types, war exhaustion, and overextension 30-11-2012
14 Nobody expects the... Spain: strategic possibilities, events, missions, decisions, and national ideas; plus details on cultural conversion. 07-12-2012
15 Et tu Brute? Milan: strategic possibilities, dynamic historical events (Ambrosian Republic, national ideas, and republican tradition as an analogous mechanism for legitimacy for monarchies 14-12-2012
16 Vive la France! France: strategic possibilities, national Missions, Decisions and Ideas; also brief notes on Harsh treatment to curtail revolts and army morale recovery. 11-01-2013
17 Honey, don't you want to talk about it? Diplomacy: new diplomatic interface, opinions and rivals 18-01-2013
18 Sail away with me! Portugal: Events, Missions, Decisions, Ideas, and a detail on Colonization 25-01-2013
18 Part II - Colonisation Clarification Colonization 26-01-2013
19 War has never been so much fun... Shattering armies, disorganization, combat interface, combat width, flanking, supply limits, attrition, manpower, reinforcement changes, maintenance cost increases. Plus a video: the World Map Trailer. 08-02-2013
20 A Tale of Two Cities The republics of Venice, Genoa, and a link to a video interview of Thomas "Besuchov" Johansson, project lead at Europa Universalis IV. 15-02-2013
21 Leaders & Mercenaries Land units, Naval units, Leaders, Mercenaries; plus a link to an article at Strategy Informer: Paradox Hands-On Special: Master Class 01-03-2013
22 A.E.I.O.U Austria: strategic possibilities, dynamic historical events (The Italian Wars, Privilegium Maius), missions, decisions and national ideas; plus Holy Roman Empire improvements (diplomacy, reforms, elections and wars within the empire) 08-03-2013
23 Tell me sweet little lies... Coalitions, relations (improve relations and insults, overextension and coring provinces. 15-03-2013
24 Heir of Rome Ottoman Empire: strategic possibilities, events (including a series of events for the provincial system and the Janissaries), national ideas; plus a feature on Westernization 22-03-2013
25 Anna Karenina Wargoals, Peace Options, Peace Interface; plus April Fool's: "EUIV, The Musical!" (songs to download and a video) 05-04-2013
26 A smoke and a pancake? A look at Burgundy and the Low Countries 11-04-2013
27 An offer you can't refuse Spy Ideas and diplomatic covert actions: Fabricate Claim, Infiltrate Administration, Sow Discontent, Sabotage Reputation, Support Rebels, and changes to rebels. 18-04-2013
28 A Kinderegg! Three in one! Scotland, The Hansa, and the Reformation 26-04-2013
29 For the Horde! Province interface and the Hordes of Central Asia: Steppe Nomad government type, separate technology group, automatic casus belli against neighbors, 50% damage modifier for fighting on plains and grasslands terrain and, aside from the Timurids, a set of national ideas; video link to the call to arms 03-05-2013
30 Four more countries and even more... The Mamelukes, Persia, The Timurids, Oman; video link to the call to arms. 10-05-2013
31 A Point of Honor Japan: Daimyos and the Shogunate, unification, events, ideas; plus a discussion of the new scoring system. Plus links to the call to arms and to download the songs of the EUIV musical. 17-05-2013
32 The more the merrier! Multiplayer changes, including new networking code, hotjoining, matchmaking, standalone servers, improved chat, and AI takeover (of players who drop out). There is also a video link to the "EUIV musical" "Casus Belli". 24-05-2013
33 Go East! Ming China: Mandate of Heaven, faction system, national events and ideas; plus debts and loans. Link to the Casus Belli music video. 31-05-2013
34 Unit interfaces and more Changes to Unitview, and the need for military power (MP) for special actions. Also a note on force march and Berber culture national ideas. 07-06-2013
35 Alt for Norge! Denmark, Norway, and a brief look at sieges 14-06-2013
36 Hot States in the Holy Roman Empire quick look at the start positions and national ideas of Brandenburg, Bavaria, and Bohemia. 20-06-2013
37 Aragon, Naples and Korea National ideas for Aragon, Naples and Korea 28-06-2013
38 Ayutthaya, Viyanagar & Muslim Sultanates A look at the national ideas major powers in the Indian subcontinent: Ayutthaya, Viyanagar and the Indian sultanates. 05-07-2013
39 Divine Tactics Fleet basing rights, Enforce peace, and Christian Theocracies 12-07-2013
40 What is our mission? Missions, Decisions, Achievements and Ironman mode. Plus links to the initial videos of an England game play-through by Quill18. 19-07-2013
41 What we all waited for! National ideas of central Europe: Poland, Lithuania, Hungary 26-07-2013
42 The Crusader Kings II Converter Article and video developer diary of how the Crusader Kings II-to-EUIV converter DLC will work. Saved games will be brought in as a mod. 31-07-2013
43 Artificially Improved changes to the Artificial Intelligence (AI), detailing how it makes decisions based on its attitudes for alliances and coalitions, and how it handles its armies in wartime. There is also a brief look at how AI difficulty and handicapping can be set. 01-08-2013
44 Newbie Friendly describes changes to the Ledger, Hint system, Production interface, Tutorial 01-08-2013
45 A very small development diary Demo will be released by the end of the week (10 August 2013); the game will be released on 13 August 2013 at 9 AM Eastern Standard Time (3 PM Swedish time). 05-08-2013

Conquest of Paradise developer diaries

No. Title and Link Description Date
Dev Diary Archive List of CoP developer diaries
1 Developer diary 1 Introduction & design goals 04-11-2013
2 Exploring a new world American continent randomization 08-11-2013
3 The Tribes New North American native countries 15-11-2013
4 American Progression New tech system for Native Americans 22-11-2013
5 A new way of playing Migrations & federations 29-11-2013
6 Colonial nations Semi-independent colonies 6-12-2013
7 Colonial Diplomacy Colonial diplomatic rules 13-12-2013
8 Liberty! Colonial independence mechanics 20-12-2013
9 Random free stuff! Features included with patch 1.4 10-01-2014
10 Post Mortem dev diary Post-release thoughts on CoP 03-03-2014

Wealth of Nations developer diaries

No. Title and Link Description Date
Dev Diary Archive List of WoN developer diaries
1 General Information Introduction & design goals 20-03-2014
2 Trade Improvements New trade mechanics 27-03-2014
3 Naval Improvement New naval mechanics 03-04-2014
4 Companies and Canals Trade company mechanics & buildable canals 10-04-2014
5 Religion New religion mechanics 17-04-2014
6 Improved Diplomacy New rival system & trade related CBs 24-04-2014
7 Free Features #1 Lots of features expanded in the 1.6 patch 06-05-2014
8 Free Features #2 Interface improvements (esp. Macro Build Interface) 08-05-2014
9 Policies & Ideas & More Policies added & expanded climate mechanics 15-05-2014
10 Balance Changes Changes and improvements to mechanics and balance in 1.6 patch 22-05-2014

Res Publica developer diaries

No. Title and Link Description Date
1 Merchant Republics/National Focus New governmental mechanics 26-06-2014
2 Dutch Republic & Ideas Dutch factions added & 3 new ideagroups 03-07-2014
3 Elective Monarchy & Rivals Elective Monarchy explained & changes to rival mechanics 10-07-2014

Art of War developer diaries

No. Title and Link Description Date
1 Fleets, Autonomy & India A detailed dev diary of the third major expansion 22-08-2014
2 Marches, Unrest & Persia Second dev diary about vassals, revolts, and Persian map 29-08-2014
3 Military Cooperation, Tradegoods & West Africa Third dev diary about directing allies in war, new trade goods, and West African map changes 05-09-2014
4 Army Builder, Rebel Relocation and China Fourth dev diary about army management, rebels on islands, and East Asian map changes 12-09-2014
5 Diplomacy, Catholics and Southeast Asia & Indonesia Fifth dev diary about diplomacy, revamping the Curia, and map changes to Indochina and Indonesia 19-09-2014

Video developer diaries

Title and Link Description Date
Developer Walkthrough Thomas Johansson, project lead for Europa Universalis IV shows off this new game from Paradox Interactive. 09-11-2012
Technology Technology changes shown off. 13-02-2013
With God on your side Religion delved into in detail 01-07-2013
A Guide to Crushing Freedom, Video Dev Diary: Exploration Video developer diary from Thomas Johansson about how to colonize as an option for more nimble powers. 15-07-2013
A Guide to Conquering Nations the Old-fashioned Way Project Lead Thomas Johansson describes the nuances of war strategy. 25-07-2013
Converter Tool Highlights How the Crusader Kings II-to-EUIV converter DLC will work. Saved games will be brought in as a mod. 31-07-2013
Conquest of Paradise Livestream Highlights Project Lead Thomas sits down with Matt to discus the first expansion for Europa Universalis IV. 8-11-2013
Conquest of Paradise - Native Americans Studio Manager Johan Andersson speaks about the new features in the upcoming expansion, Conquest of Paradise. This DD focuses on the expanded gameplay and mechanics for the Native American tribes, including new nations, unique buildings, and nomadic peoples 12-12-2013
The History of Historical Strategy Highlighting the studio's humble beginnings with its adaptation of Europa Universalis from the tabletop to the desktop, this short film goes on to examine the team responsible for such titles as the Hearts of Iron and Crusader Kings series. Games both old and new are shared from the designers' perspective, including a look at what's next for Paradox Development Studio -- their first RPG, Runemaster. 30-04-2014
Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations Video Developer Diary #1 Project Lead Thomas Johansson talk about the features of the upcoming Europa Universalis IV-expansion "Wealth of Nations", which focuses on trade and how to make the wealth of the world flow into your coffers. 16-05-2014
Paradox Live 0010 - The Art of War Europa Universalis IV, The Art of War is coming, lets sit down with Martin and talk about it. 13-09-2014

Other developer articles

Title and Link Description Date
The 3 tiers... Discussion of the different tiers of countries, and a listing of which countries fall into each tier; the tier of the country determines the amount of developer focus on national events, features and mechanics. 03-10-2012


Free publications

Europa Universalis IV Strategy Guide

One Land, One Faith, One Queen: The Europa Universalis IV Strategy Guide (by Jason Pitruzzello) was published by Paradox Books on 26 September 2013.

"Follow the story of young Isabella and the entire Trastámara dynasty as they struggle to make Spain the grandest of all countries. Will they succeed in finally defeating their hated rivals, the French? Or will history march on, leaving Isabella and her dynasty as little more than footnotes in the annals of other, greater countries?"

See also

External links