While this Kingdoms and Castles update isn't the one to include rival kingdoms (it's coming), it does lay-out some of the groundwork towards that.
The Infrastructure II update was released a few days ago, which adds in a big rework of map generation. It makes distinct landmasses further apart, which will make a lot more sense when there's AI players in the game to content with. It also makes it a little more interesting, as now shallow water rivers will spawn too as well as more interesting island shapes and all maps are 20-30% bigger overall.
There's new stuff to build too including wooden gates, stone bridges, a Fire Brigade building, Twitch integration, more fine-grained adjustments can be done to tax rates and other small tweaks. Full list is here.
Even with all these changes including the bigger maps, it still performs rather nicely. I was actually surprised when I realised how many hours I've ended up spending in it, time really does go quickly.
What started off as a rather basic city-builder (but still quite good) has expanded repeatedly into something much bigger and more interesting. The dedication from developer Lion Shield, is really quite impressive.
After release in 2017, they still manage a few hundred people playing every day and that's also quite impressive considering how hot the competition is. I imagine that will get a decent boost when the AI faction update is out, which I will have some thoughts up on eventually as I'm quite excited by it.
Great to see another success story come out of the Fig crowdfunding platform!