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Introducing CK3 #01 - Characters. In this first video One Proud Bavarian will help us understand the gallery of characters that we will play and what they are made of!

A character refers to any person, historical or generated, that is represented personally in Crusader Kings III. Every single character is an individual, living entity that will act individually and has the potential to change history. Characters can be either noble or lowborn, and landed or unlanded.

  • Noble characters are members of a dynasty.
  • Lowborn characters are not members of a dynasty. If they are landed with a playable government title they will become noble and found a dynasty.
  • Landed characters own at least one holding.
  • Unlanded characters do not own any holdings; a character who Leases holdings (e.g. a Realm Priest) is considered an unlanded character.

If you're looking for recommendations regarding whom to play, check out Interesting characters.

Appearance[edit | edit source]

Characters are depicted using a 3D portrait system. Every character's physical appearance is internally determined by a DNA system, which defines how they look: facial features, skin pigmentation, height, and hair color are all stored as DNA. This DNA is dynamically generated for courtiers, and can be directly edited with the Ruler Designer. DNA is stored as dominant and recessive genes and passed on to a character's children, affecting their appearance.

As Crusader Kings III covers a large portion of Eurasia and North Africa in its setting, characters can be from a diverse number of ethnicities: West/Central European, Northern European, Slavic, Arctic, Mediterranean, West African, East African, Arabic, Asian, North Indian, or South Indian.

Their appearance is further determined by age, weight, and certain congenital traits. Characters will age as years pass by, eventually growing old and withering away. Their appearance can also be adversely affected by illness or injury; battle wounds may scar their face, while disease can leave a ghastly impact on their visage.

Barbershop[edit | edit source]

Players can adjust the appearance of their ruler or ruler's family members via the Barbershop window. This allows hair and clothing to be changed, overriding the character's default appearance.

Sexual Orientation[edit | edit source]

Male icon Female icon Preference Can form lover relations and have attraction opinion with
Heterosexual.png Heterosexual.png Heterosexual Characters of the opposite sex
Homosexual male.png Homosexual female.png Homosexual Characters of the same sex
Bisexual male.png Bisexual female.png Bisexual Everyone
Asexual.png Asexual.png Asexual No one

A character's sexual orientation determines with which gender they will gain attraction opinion and can form lover relations. It is decided when the character is around 10 years old and cannot be changed. AI characters will never try to form a relation with characters that do not match their sexual orientation. Both the initial distribution of sexual orientation and the chance for children to gain a certain sexual orientation is determined by the sexuality distribution game rule.

If the child is played by a player, there is a 20% chance that the player will get to pick the gender preference.

Opinion[edit | edit source]

Each character has an opinion of every other character. The  opinion the player character holds influences the success rate of certain actions that target another character while the  opinion of AI characters also determines their behavior towards other characters.

When a character dies, their primary heir will temporarily inherit part of the  opinion of vassals towards the late liege, shown as Opinion of Predecessor.

  • Positive opinion towards predecessor: 25% of  opinion is inherited.
  • Negative opinion towards predecessor: 50% of  opinion is inherited.

As a liege, vassals' opinions are important; vassals with negative opinion are more willing to take hostile actions against their liege.

  • Clan vassals contribute levies and taxes based on their opinion of their liege.
  • For Faiths with the Theocracy clerical tradition doctrine), the realm priest contribute levies and taxes based on their opinion of their liege (maximum of 50% taxes and 100% levies at 50 opinion).

Attraction[edit | edit source]

Attraction is an  opinion modifier that can only be held towards characters one's sexual preference allows. Male characters aged above 65 years and female character above 50 years are not affected by attraction.

Relations[edit | edit source]

When certain requirements are met, two characters can have one of three types of relations, with each type having three levels. Relations have a great impact on how two characters act towards each other.

  • Childhood relations can only be held between two child characters and might evolve into their corresponding adulthood relations when the characters reach adulthood
  • Adulthood relations can be gained and lost as a result of events
  • Lifelong relations can only be obtained towards characters with an existing adulthood relation and each character can have only one of each lifelong relation
Relation Childhood Adulthood Lifelong
Friendship Friend
  • +60 opinion
  • +60 opinion
  • +10 stress when character dies
Best Friend
  • +120 opinion
  • +10 stress when character dies
Love Crush
  • +60 opinion
  • +60 opinion
  • +25% fertility
  • +10 stress when character dies
  • +120 opinion
  • +25% fertility
  • +10 stress when character dies
Conflict Bully-Victim
  • -20 opinion
  • -60 opinion
  • -35 stress when character dies
  • -120 opinion
  • -35 stress when character dies

Tyranny[edit | edit source]

Tyranny is negative opinion gained by rulers who take unjust actions. It is felt by vassals and courtiers towards a liege. The maximum tyranny a character can have is 1000. Tyranny is not gained if the liege has a valid reason.

Action Tyranny
Successfully imprisoning a character +20 tyranny
Increasing feudal obligations +20 tyranny per obligation without concession or hooks
Revoking title without title revocation reason +20 tyranny
Retracting a vassal +5 tyranny
Banishing a vassal +5 tyranny
Executing a vassal +10 tyranny
Events Varies

Tyranny is reduced over time. This amount can be increased by Action can choose lifestyle.png perks, legacies and more. Tyranny gained through actions can also be reduced.

With the Torturer lifestyle perk Malice Implicit, characters gain +0.5 dread per tyranny.

Personal diplomacy[edit | edit source]

All characters have an opinion modifier, Personal Diplomacy, which is based on a character's skill. It is calculated by taking the character's  Diplomacy skill and subtracting 8.

Diplomatic range[edit | edit source]

The diplomatic range is the distance within which two characters can interact with each other. Neighboring realms are always within diplomatic range of each other, as well as realms separated by no more than three sea zones.

  • The first Dynasty Legacy from the Adventure Legacy Tree from Northern Lords DLC increases Diplomatic Range by 30%.
  • The Rock of Gibraltar increases Diplomatic Range by 20%.

Names[edit | edit source]

Each character has a name.

  • Their first name is chosen at birth (or, for generated characters, when they are created) and it is based on their culture.
  • Some cultures may have patronymics (names based on one's father) which act as a middle name.
  • Their last name is decided by their  dynasty.

Nicknames[edit | edit source]

Main article: Nickname

Nicknames are epithets granted to characters and are displayed either before or after a character's name. They are mainly gained through decisions and events.

AI Personality[edit | edit source]

AI characters will use  decisions and character interactions based on the following attributes:

  • Boldness: determines how much the character is affected by  dread.
  • Compassion: determines how the character will treat its prisoners.
  • Energy: determines how often the character will consider a  decision.
  • Greed: determines how easily the character will spend  gold.
  • Honor: determines how often the character will honor relationships and alliances as well as how often they will become agents.
  • Rationality: determines how strong a character's army has to be before declaring war.
  • Sociability: determines how often the character will consider a character interaction.
  • Vengefulness: determines how much the character will seek to punish transgressions.
  • Zeal: determines how often the character will join holy wars.

Each attribute is capped at -100 and +100.

Each AI character will have its personality described with an adjective and a noun based on the highest amount of the value of two attributes:

Attribute Very Negative (-76 to -100) Negative (-1 to -75) Positive (+1 to +75) Very Positive (+76 to +100)
Adjective Noun Adjective Noun Adjective Noun Adjective Noun
Boldness Spineless Craven Cowardly Coward Bold Gambler Fearless Adventurer
Compassion Evil Villain Callous Brute Compassionate Altruist Gracious Empath
Greed Content Lackey Content Follower Covetous Grasper Rapacious Ravener
Honor Treacherous Blackguard Dishonorable Knave Honorable Gentleman / Gentlewoman Righteous Paragon
Rationality Insane Maniac Irrational Fool Rational Thinker Analytic Planner
Vengefulness Magnanimous Absolver Forgiving Conciliator Resentful Quarreler Vindictive Antagonist
Zeal Godless Atheist Cynical Unbeliever Religious Believer Zealous Zealot
Characters CharactersAttributesTraitsResourcesLifestyleDynastyCultureInnovationsModifiers
Realm & Governance VassalsCouncilCourtSchemesGovernmentLawsDecisionsTitlesBaronyCounty
Warfare WarfareCasus belliAllianceArmyHired forces
Faith ReligionFaithDoctrinesTenets
Meta ModdingPatchesDownloadable contentDeveloper diariesAchievementsJargon