One-Year Anniversary Post

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Hello everyone! Today’s post is a special post, because two weeks ago (tomorrow) was the one-year anniversary of the very first post on ButISawItOnTv! On this occasion (the special qualities of which are up for debate) I would like to thank all of those who have read the approximately 50 posts which have made their way onto this site, or nearly one a week, in the past year. I would also like to say that I look forward to another exciting year of posts, and already have some ideas for topics: however, if any of you have ideas of your own or would like me to continue reviewing a television show I have already begun, it would be wonderful if you sent them in via the comments or social media.

If you truly love history, I cannot recommend enough that you enjoy some form of historical media during the following year. Whether this includes reading history books, listening to historical podcasts (during lunch is a good time, I have found), watching movies or television shows, or playing video games, it will enrich your life, I assure you. On that topic, I firmly hope that ButISawItOnTv has enriched yours during its year of existence thus far. Thank you all for reading as always, and I hope you have a wonderful day.

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How Accurate Is: Renowned Explorers: International Society (Game, 2015)

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Hello everyone! Today’s post is on the accuracy of Renowned Explorers: International Society, by Abbey Games. This game is an interesting case. While it does have its roots in history, it makes no pretense to be genuinely historical; however, I found the way in which it interprets history sufficiently interesting to justify a post regardless.

The background for this game is the age of exploration, in the seventeenth or eighteenth century. The Americas and most of the African coastline, as well as Asia, have been charted by Europeans, but besides the coastline mystery abounds. The game therefore makes liberal use of pop culture and historical references to populate its world with a variety of historical and semi-historical events and characters. One treasure which can be found in the game, for example, is King Kong (or an equivalent), who can then be brought back to Europe to be displayed. On a more historical note, the locales visited by the band of intrepid explorers controlled by the player include islands in the Caribbean (populated by smugglers) abandoned forts in Hungary, and the coast of West Africa, presenting an interesting mix of global locations.

For more, continue past the link.

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Video Game Recommendation: Europa Universalis IV (Video Game, 2013)

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Hello everyone! Today, I am going to do a video game recommendation post for Europa Universalis IV, by Paradox Interactive. Released in 2013, the game allows you to guide a nation through the four hundred years of history between 1444 (the end of the failed Crusade of Varma) to 1821 (the year Napoleon died on St. Helena). Essentially any political entity that was present, almost anywhere in the world, during this time can be chosen. The level of detail present in the game is extremely impressive, and most nations on the map do feel true to themselves, although this becomes less true the further from the traditional centers of historical study (i.e., Europe, China, Japan, etc.) one travels.

The one downside of the game is the large number of expansions- I would recommend waiting until there is a sale on Steam to purchase this game, because otherwise the game can be rather expensive. Not all the expansions are required, but they all add important features to the game and none are definitely not worth purchasing.

The amount of features in the game is impressive. There is a detailed religion system, depicting which provinces (the principal division of the map, as in Crusader Kings II) belong to which religion. There is also colonization, an trade and technology system, and cultures present. The topographic map is quite beautiful as far as I am concerned, although I know that not everyone is in agreement on that topic. That said, this game does not have wonderful graphics; the game never leaves the aforementioned topographic map, and there are no cutscenes or anything of that variety.

All in all, I would definitely recommend this game. It has essentially infinite replayability, and allows you to relive history like few games before it, save for the other games by Paradox. I hope you enjoyed this post, and I will see you soon, this time with a full post.

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Video Game Recommendation: Crusader Kings II

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For today’s post, I will be doing another recommendation. This time, the recommendation is for one of my favourite games of all time: Crusader Kings II. Released by Paradox Interactive in 2012, many expansions now exist for the game, which explains the relatively cheap price tag for the full game- never fear, however, as most of the features are not unique to the expansions. Mostly, the expansions only unlock new characters, with the features they brought with them into the game also available in the basic version (to which I linked). Perhaps I should explain. In the game, you can play as any landed character in Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, and India (subject to expansions ownership) between the years 1066 and 1337 or in the years 867 and 769 (those last also subject to expansion ownership).

What does the game mean by landed characters? For the purposes of the game, it is any count or above (which I know is a little bit of an misnomer for many cultures at the time, but that is why I recommend a mod- see below). So, you could either begin a game as the King of France or as the count of Champagne, or any of hundreds of other characters. From the moment you begin, the game is about preserving your dynasty, the feature which has earned it its reputation as a medieval soap opera. You can marry, have children, and then play as those children once your character dies, meaning a single game can span approximately 600 years if you play for the maximum possible time. For someone who is interested in history and/or strategy games, this is the perfect game, in my opinion, at least. Furthermore, the depth of the game is quite impressive; the differences between various religions are modeled mostly accurately, and no group of people is demonized, as the name could suggest. True, odd results sometimes come out of the game, like England being invaded by the Mongols, but this is all part of the charm.

Furthermore, if you are really into history, I would suggest the Historical Immersion Project, which is an impressive mod for the game that redoes the map (at the cost of India and the 769 date, but you can forego the map portion of the mod if you wish) and gives many of the characters in the game more cultural events and localized titles. Tired of seeing your German dukes called dukes? Now they can be called Herzogs instead! This mod enhances the historical feel of the game, making an already brilliant game that much better.

This game receives my highest recommendation- true, the price tag is a little steep for the full game, but thanks to Steam games are often on sale (as Crusader Kings II is while I write this post), and so I would recommend picking up the base game and then waiting for a sale to purchase the expansions. I have over four hundred and fifty hours in this game, and I see no reason to stop any time soon. Endless replay value and historical immersion are, for me, the perfect combination, and if you feel the same, don’t hesitate.

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ButISawItOnTV: Introduction

Hello everyone! This website/blog, www.ButISawItOnTV.com, will be measuring the historical accuracy of pop culture- think television shows, books, movies, video games, and potentially even more. Keep an eye on this space for new content, which should begin uploading shortly.

You can also follow us on Twitter at https://twitter.com/ButISawItOnTv, and on Tumblr at https://www.tumblr.com/blog/butisawitontvblog. Neither of these have any content yet, but they will soon.  Both of these links are also present in the side menu and at the bottom of the page, so you don’t need to keep track of this post.

You may notice a link to an About Us page at the bottom of the page- this contains essentially the same information as this post, so feel free to refer to it at any time. Please feel free to leave a comment on the About Us page suggesting a piece of media you would like to see reviewed- there is no guarantee it will be seen, but we will do our best. Thank you for visiting, and please enjoy.

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