The Black Death, Now In A Video Game

Illustration for article titled The Black Death, Now In A Video Game

The Black Death, an outbreak of the bubonic plague which swept through Europe in the 14th century (killing anywhere from 30-60% of its population!), does not seem a good setting for a video game. Oh, unless it’s Crusader Kings II we’re talking about. Which, hey, we are.


The medieval murder/sex/papacy simulation is about to add disease management to its list of player options, with the upcoming release of The Reaper’s Due, an expansion which introduces stuff like hospitals, proper epidemics which spread across sea and trade lanes (the game technically already has disease, including bubonic plague, but it was more of an “event” than something you could actually manage) and the option for your royal house to lock the castle gates and wait it out, which guarantees your survival but wipes out the countryside.

Here’s my favourite addition, though: the chance for more story weirdness.

New Event Chains: Is the new epidemic the End of Days? Is there someone else to blame for these horrors? Are there supernatural origins or solutions to the world’s problems?


Should be a hoot.

Luke Plunkett is a Senior Editor based in Canberra, Australia. He has written a book on cosplay, designed a game about airplanes, and also runs

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Great, more things outside of my control that upsets my centuries long plans!

I recently started playing the game since I wanted to play more aGoT after jonesing post-Season 6, and then started trying to get achievements in Ironman.

It’s so frustrating not being able to reload, but it’s amazing. I’m trying to restore the Roman Empire right now and I’ve restarted about six times, but I’ve learned how to deal with factions and rebels now.