Crusader Kings II—one of the best video games ever made—has had a ton of great expansions and post-release content over the years. But none of it has been quite as exciting, at least to me, as this.

Ever since CKII launched, one of the most defining features of the game has been the slow, inevitable encroachment from the east by the Mongol hordes. They’d overrun entire empires, and were such an issue in terms of game design that Paradox had to invent a fictional western invasion (where the Aztecs land in Britain) just to balance things up.

Thing is, despite all that power and all that upheaval, the Mongols were never playable. Until now. Paradox just announced Horse Lords, a major new expansion for the game that not only gives you command of the Khans, but makes the map bigger (to accommodate Central Asia), adds new types of rule and introduces the Silk Road.

Meaning, yes, you can take control of the Hordes and roll them all the way to the Spanish coast. Should make for one hell of a game.

It’s “coming soon”.

Here’s the full list of changes/additions:

Nomadic rule: Distinct from the tribal governments already in game, nomads need lots of space and resist the trappings of settlement

Clan politics: Rule a clan within a nomadic tribe, split clans that get too large, fight for dominance, and proclaim feuds and blood oaths

Muster Hordes: Raise vast armies of horsemen and archers, mobilizing your entire population to ride forth and conquer

Silk Road: This rich trade network can bring great wealth to whomever controls the cities along the route – but it’s especially ripe for pillaging.

Larger Map: The Central Asian plains have been expanded

Tributaries: New diplomatic relationship for nomad states forces defeated enemies to keep the Khan’s coffers filled.

Forts: build temporary fortifications to hold a province under your sway for just long enough for you to finish the war.

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