The next entry in Paradox Interactive's grand strategy series, Europa Universalis IV, has been announced and is set for release in the second half of 2013. The franchise is famous for its obtuse play mechanics and loosely defined objectives, but those who have invested the required time and effort are sure to be rewarded with a very satisfying experience. Unlike another recent announcement teaser, this one actually carries some information about the game with it. The video showcases the new graphical prowess of the game, featuring a beautifully rendered world map complete with new climate effects. A statement from Paradox also lists some new Europa Universalis IV features. A new monarch mechanic will push your faction towards a certain style of strategic decisions. This feature will utilize a background of over 4000 historical monarchs in order to provide a authentic feeling experience. New trade and diplomacy systems promise to add depth to the game. Relationships between nations can now be unilateral - a country may dislike you, but you can be neutral towards them. The game also features 32-person online play, accompanied by a new co-op mode that allows multiple players to help manage a single nation. I've played some EU3, but I never got hooked on it as so many players have. I think that the mechanics were just a bit too overwhelming for me. I know it's often a complaint when strategy games bend over backwards to pander to novice players, but I wouldn't mind a starting experience that is a bit more welcoming to newbies like me.