itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Important articles, websites, quotes, information etc. that can come in handy when discussing or debating religious or science-related topics

Moderators: Alyrium Denryle, SCRawl, Thanas

User avatar
RedImperator
Roosevelt Republican
Posts: 16465
Joined: 2002-07-11 07:59pm
Location: Delaware
Contact:

itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-26 04:15pm

Hey, this game looks interesting. And it's cheap! OK, I'll download it.

Installation goes fine, hooray.

Game opens right up. Everything seems to work. How about that.

Wow, that's a lot of countries. Hmm.

Now, I played EU I, but that was years ago and I haven't played a Paradox game since. I know that under the best of circumstances, this is going to be a complicated, slider-heavy game with a lot of micromanagement and interlocking decisions. I should pick an easy country to get started, like England or Castille.

I pick the Byzantine Empire, a two-province minor surrounded by the Ottomans. Difficulty normal, let's go.

Oh hey, looks like the Ottomans are having a pretty big problem with the Timurids. Hmm, opportunity. Ally with Trezibond, Wallachia. Hungary is uninterested, Serbia and Bosnia are Ottoman vassals. Macedonia's willing, though. All right, build a few infantry units, wait for my moment. Oh look, the Ottomans have sent all their European forces east.

Let's go!

Trezibond dishonors and Macedonia's 1000 man army is crushed by Serbia immediately, leaving just me and Wallachia. No problem! Start seiging the Ottoman capital at Eridine. Wallachia invades Turkish Bulgaria. Bulgarian nationalist rebels spawn, immediately start fighting the Wallachians. Greek patriots spawn in Macedonia; all right, these guys don't fight my guys, at least. Fight off a Bosnian army sent to relieve Eridine. War's going pretty well.

10,000 man Turkish doomstack crosses the Bosporus and starts seiging Constantinople. Oh shit. Ignore them. Capture Eridine, attack the doomstack. Lose, retreat back to Eridine. Bosnians attack again, lose again. Retreat with tattered remnants into Macedonia. Turks capture Constantinople. Turkish army lands in Morea (Peloponnesia), my only other province, which is undefended. Turkish doomstack drops off a siege force in Eridine and then enters Macedonia where the tattered remnants of the Imperial army and a few thousand rebels defend. In desperation, I send my fleet (which was ejected from Constantinople when the city fell) to attack a Turkish fleet in the Aegean Sea. It's sunk. Turks win in Morea. Army is down to a few hundred. Retreat south. Turks follow and crush me. I have no army or navy. Attempt to build an infantry unit in Morea. It finishes before the Turkish siege, Turkish siege army annihilates it without breaking a sweat. Wallachia's capital is occupied by Serbia. Macedonia has already quit. Trezibond was pretty smart to dishonor this alliance. Turkish doomstack finishes off Bulgarian rebels, returns to Asia Minor, presumably to chase the Timurids off the Anatolian peninsula and beat up on a couple Sunni two-province minors who tried to get in on the fun.

I need a miracle. It doesn't happen. Morea falls. The Byzantine Empire dies 50 years ahead of schedule.

Oops.

Start new game.
Image
Any city gets what it admires, will pay for, and, ultimately, deserves…We want and deserve tin-can architecture in a tinhorn culture. And we will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed.--Ada Louise Huxtable, "Farewell to Penn Station", New York Times editorial, 30 October 1963
X-Ray Blues

User avatar
RedImperator
Roosevelt Republican
Posts: 16465
Joined: 2002-07-11 07:59pm
Location: Delaware
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-26 04:51pm

OK, let's try this again. Same setup as before, except this time, instead of immediately declaring war as soon as the Turks leave Europe, I build a bigger army, a mix of infantry and cavalry. When my manpower runs out, I hire mercenaries. I run out of money almost immediately, but hey, I can take out loans. And hey, look, you can hire generals. I can't afford one, but you can turn your ruler into one, so Manuel II becomes a general. Erm, not a particularly good one, I don't think, but he's better than nothing. Make two armies in Thrace--a mix of infantry and cavalry to go on the offensive, and a stack of infantry to protect Constantinople and prevent the Turks from crossing the Bosporus.

Declare war. This time all three allies honor and the Wallachians invade Serbia immediately. Montenegro sends its army to siege Albania, which saves it from getting destroyed by a Bosnian army twice its size. Bulgarians rise up in the north and Greeks in the south. Combined with my armies, there's about 20,000 or so (relatively) friendly forces in the Balkans versus about 10,000 Turkish vassal armies and no Turks at all. As before, I start sieging Eridine.

Until now. Turns out, I forgot about the Dardanelles. Turks send a doomstack across directly into my main army which...holds! Ha! Turks retreat back to Asia Minor. Eridine falls. Macedonia falls. The province of Bulgaria falls to Bulgarians nationalists. I send my main army south to liberate the two southernmost Turkish provinces. I'm already thinking about how to kick the Venetians out of Athens.

Turks make peace with Timurids. Should I be worried?

Of course I should. A second doomstack crosses the Bosporus and crushes the army defending Constantinople. The original, now back to full strength, crosses the Dardanelles and sieges Eridine, which falls depressingly fast. Macedonia falls and the Bosnians move into Albania, lifting the siege and sending the Macedonian army running. Wallachians are bogged down in Serbia and can't help against the Turks. There's a peasant uprising in Morea, just to add insult to injury. Bulgaria falls to rebels, but the Turks crush the rebel army and start sieging the province back; it, too, falls much faster the rebels took it. Turks crush Greek rebels, which is unfortunate, but buys me enough time to retreat to Morea. Do surprisingly poorly against the peasants, losing thousands of men before finally winning. Try to negotiate with the Turks, but I have nothing to offer them. Try to scrape up a few more mercenaries in Morea.

Macedonian army is annihilated. Trezibond is annexed by the Turks. They were really smart to stay out of this war the last time. Bosnians and Serbs drive Wallachians out of Serbia. I'm cornered in Morea and there's 15,000 Turks headed my way. Venice smells blood in the water, declares war, though at least their 2000 man force in Athens is no match for me. Siege Athens for the hell of it. Turks arrive and I can't retreat in time; sieging force crushed. That was productive. Here comes the Ottoman Army.

At least I made it until 1405 this time.

Start new game.
Image
Any city gets what it admires, will pay for, and, ultimately, deserves…We want and deserve tin-can architecture in a tinhorn culture. And we will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed.--Ada Louise Huxtable, "Farewell to Penn Station", New York Times editorial, 30 October 1963
X-Ray Blues

User avatar
RedImperator
Roosevelt Republican
Posts: 16465
Joined: 2002-07-11 07:59pm
Location: Delaware
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-26 05:50pm

Maybe I should just play as England. No! I'm learning. You learn more by losing than you do by winning.

Right?

Another attempt to raise a big army. Stretch myself to the absolute financial limit doing it. The plan is to overrun the Balkans and knock Turkey's vassals out of the war (they won't make a separate peace, but if you destroy their armies and occupy all their provinces, they can't do dick) as quickly as possible, and then present the Turks with a peace offer before they can settle with the Timurids. For this, it would be very helpful if the Wallachians would focus on the vassals, rather than waste time fighting Bulgarian rebels--who cares about them if they're fighting the Turks? But I don't know of any way to direct your allies (a problem which will rear its head in the future).

Again, wait for the Turks to evacuate the Balkans, declare war. Bad news--Wallachia dishonors. On the other hand, the Serbs wind up fighting the Bulgarian rebels (I wonder if there's some kind of event that fires, since those rebels always seem to show up as soon as I declare war on the Turks), so they're distracted. I learn to use the "detach siege" button, leaving infantry behind in Eridine and Macedonia while the bulk of my army attacks the Serbs and Bosnians. Have some success against 1000 man stacks, but I don't have enough infantry left to siege Kosovo and the Macedonians don't seem interested (they siege Albania instead, which is nice, but isn't exactly a priority).

And now RI learns about attrition. My main army has, by a combination of battlefield losses, detached siege forces, and attrition, withered to fewer than 3000 men. I scrape up a few mercenary infantry regiments, but money is very tight even with war taxes and I've exhausted my credit. The Bosnian AI manages to assemble a 3000 man stack led by a competent general, and they force me out of Serbia and start lifting the sieges I've dropped. I abandon the siege of Eridine so I have that infantry in my main army, attack the Bosnians, and lose badly.

And here come the Turks. No doomstack this time--just a couple of 5000 man stacks, but my army is in tatters and doesn't stand a chance. The whole thing gets caught in Bulgaria and destroyed. As before, negotiation is pointless--I have absolutely nothing to offer. The Turks and their allies wipe out the rebels on the peninsula (more pop up, including 6000 Albanian nationalists but they're not enough to stop anybody). Just for fun, I go bankrupt, though I'm pretty sure my creditors weren't going to get their money back anyway. Turks land in Morea and it's just a countdown to the end, which comes in 1403.

So far, under my leadership, Byzantium has collapsed in a heap in five years or fewer three times. Fourth time's the charm?

No. This one is so much like the other three that it's not worth recounting. Wallachia honors, farts around in Bulgaria fighting rebels, will eventually wind up a one province Turkish vassal. My forces have initial success, then run out of steam.

In desperation, I decide to invade Asia Minor, hoping maybe if I can capture one province there, the Turks will take a white peace. That's when I discover something I probably should have known before I started--you can't cross straits if there's a hostile fleet in the way. Maybe I should have read the manual lol.

You know, Byzantium starts the game with a 5 ship fleet in Thrace...
Image
Any city gets what it admires, will pay for, and, ultimately, deserves…We want and deserve tin-can architecture in a tinhorn culture. And we will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed.--Ada Louise Huxtable, "Farewell to Penn Station", New York Times editorial, 30 October 1963
X-Ray Blues


User avatar
RedImperator
Roosevelt Republican
Posts: 16465
Joined: 2002-07-11 07:59pm
Location: Delaware
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-26 05:58pm

Stark wrote:dear jesus why are you doing this to yourself
I'm actually having fun. Somehow.

For the record, EU III with all the expansions is surprisingly non-broken. So it's not stupid frustrating UI or stupid frustrating bugs or stupid frustrating design decisions (except not being able to control what my AI allies do). It's just me not knowing what I'm doing. I get better eventually.
Image
Any city gets what it admires, will pay for, and, ultimately, deserves…We want and deserve tin-can architecture in a tinhorn culture. And we will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed.--Ada Louise Huxtable, "Farewell to Penn Station", New York Times editorial, 30 October 1963
X-Ray Blues

User avatar
RedImperator
Roosevelt Republican
Posts: 16465
Joined: 2002-07-11 07:59pm
Location: Delaware
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-26 06:07pm

OK, let's try this again. Same setup as before, except this time, I park my fleet (two galleys and three cogs) in the Sea of Marmara. And it works! The Turks have a doomstack sitting in Bythinia, right across the Bosporos from Constantinople, but all they can do is watch while me and the rebels capture all their Balkan provinces. Wallachia behaves non-stupidly and leave the Bulgarian rebels alone, leading to Bulgaria declaring independence as a 3-province Orthodox minor with a respectably sized army. Of course, those three provinces are all Byzantine cores, which means I'll have to deal with Bulgarians somehow later, but one thing at a time.

Then the Ottoman fleet arrives in the Sea of Marmara. 10 galleys. Uh-oh. At this point, my army is a fraction of its former size and I have no manpower to rebuild it nor any money to hire more mercenaries. I'm struggling to deal with the Bosnians when I get a new complication--the Mamluks declare war and land an army in Morea. I sue for peace. Unfortunately, the AI is smart enough to realize that even though I hold all their Balkan provinces and Serbia is knocked flat, my situation is untenable.

Turks win the Battle of Marmara. Here come the doomstacks. Constantinople sieged. Turks invade Bulgaria and while the Bulgarians make a good showing of it, they can't hold out for long. Small Turkish armies unravel all of my conquests. My army is caught in Albania and destroyed. The end is inevitable and I don't bother waiting before quitting back to the main menu.

Still, I held out for longer, and the sea battle took a remarkably long time, even with such bad odds. There's a strategy here, I think.
Image
Any city gets what it admires, will pay for, and, ultimately, deserves…We want and deserve tin-can architecture in a tinhorn culture. And we will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed.--Ada Louise Huxtable, "Farewell to Penn Station", New York Times editorial, 30 October 1963
X-Ray Blues

User avatar
RedImperator
Roosevelt Republican
Posts: 16465
Joined: 2002-07-11 07:59pm
Location: Delaware
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-26 07:30pm

All right, so here's the situation. The Turks control six or so provinces in Asia Minor and eight in the Balkans. Add in Bosnia and Serbia, and that's 10 unfriendly provinces on my side. I hold two, widely separated--Thrace and Morea. They have more money, more ships, and more men than me.

But--they're at war with the Timurid Empire and some 2-province Sunni minors on the Anatolian Peninsula. Their entire army is in the east, fighting the Timurids (when I ally with Trezibond, I can see big Timurid stacks rampaging in eastern Anatolia--in one game, they actually sent a raiding force all the way to Bythinia). Their empire is divided by the Bosporus, the Dardanelles, and the Sea of Marmara. If I close the Sea of Marmara, they'll be stuck with what they can raise locally in the Balkans and whatever they can transport across the Aegean, which will be a neat trick because they don't have any transports.

I've been spending every ducat I can find on armies, but I have no hope of building a force that can stand up to the Turks on equal grounds. Even if I could somehow build it, I'd go broke trying to maintain it. So to hell with that. Let's build a navy instead.

I queue up both my provinces with orders for galleys and, after some thought, one carrack. The Turks have 10 galleys, so I want at least equal ship numbers, not counting my cogs (which are transports and pretty hopeless in battle). This takes a while and costs a lot of money (loans, loans, loans), but I've got 7 combat ships, including the carrack, ready to go when the Ottomans declare war on me. Okay, here goes.

Out goes the fleet, including the cogs because, well, why not. The Turks send 10 ships. I can't afford an admiral to lead the fleet, but they don't have one either, so that's a push. Another galley finished in Morea and I rush it to the battle. Meanwhile, I have a tiny army of two infantry and one cavalry, which I supplement with mercenaries. Wallachia picks today to be stupid and fights Bulgarian rebels while the Serbs beat the snot out of poor Macedonia. I get a Greek uprising in the south, at least.

Success! We win the sea battle. The Bosporus is closed and the Turks can't get any reinforcements to Europe. And I get a bit of good luck--the Timurids clobber a substantial Turk force in the east, giving them something else to think about. The Turks do try to raise a few regiments in Europe, but they spawn in provinces under siege from the rebels and get wiped out immediately. No war dec from the Mamulks this time, either--it looks like they actually declared war on the Turks instead.

That still leaves Serbia and Bosnia, and with my tiny army and Wallachia acting like idiots, they're fairly challenging. Fortunately, they're no smarter about ignoring Bulgarian rebels than Wallachia is, and they split off small stacks to lose to Greek rebels, too. The Turks are in trouble but they refuse peace. I manage to kill isolated Bosnian/Serb stacks after some frustrating back-and-forth, and, with the help of some newly raised regiments, siege their countries, a total of four provinces. I win the sieges, essentially knocking them out of the war. Three Bulgarian provinces break away. Greek patriots control the south. The Turks have lost all their provinces in Europe.

They're willing to talk peace now, but they're not willing to pay for it. With no more enemies in Europe, I gather an army in Thrace and send it across the Bosporus to Bythinia. The Turks no longer appear to have a coherent field army--they have scattered stacks in Asia minor, fighting Sunni minors, Timurids, Mamulks, rebels, and even Trezibond (which takes a separate peace in exchange for one province on the Aegean coast, south of Bythinia). They manage to make peace with their Muslim enemies (somehow without giving up any provinces), but they're broke and out of manpower, and their combined army can't lift the siege of Bythinia.

Unfortunately, I'm not in much better shape. War exhaustion is nearing 10, manpower is drained, and my finances are dire. Much as I'd like to continue to press my advantage, my allies have all quit the war and I'm worried that the Turks (who at this point still have four taxpaying provinces to my two) will be able to reorganize and counterattack. I'm also terrified of another Mamluk intervention. Bythinia falls and I sue for peace.

Now to make some choices. Despite the fact the Turks have been whipped in Europe, my war score isn't actually that great because I only directly hold a few provinces--rebel-held provinces don't count (thanks, Paradox). I could probably get Macedonia, Albania, and the two southern provinces, but they'd keep Serbia and Bosnia as vassals and all their remaining Asian territories. Or I could take Bythinia, Macedonia, and Albana, and detach Serbia from Ottoman orbit.

I decide I can always go to war again. I offer the second deal and they take it. As I expected, they're out of money, so I can't demand any cash--I suspect they bought off the Timurids and Mamluks. The Ottoman Empire is now cut into three pieces--two rebel-held provinces in the southern Balkans, Eridine and a Bulgarian-nationality province bordering Serbia, and their remaining Asia Minor provinces. Critically, I control both sides of the Bosporus and Trezibond holds the Asian side of the Dardanelles. Neither of us are about to offer them military access, so unless they're willing to invest in a decent transport fleet, these three pieces are cut off from each other.

And while I made peace with them, the Greek rebels didn't. Months after the peace, the two rebel-held provinces flip to me.

Holy shit, I won!

Then Manuel II dies, leaving a regency council in charge. And then suddenly I'm forced to be the junior partner in a personal union with Trezibond (touching off a war with Bulgaria).

And then I go bankrupt.

Hrm.
Image
Any city gets what it admires, will pay for, and, ultimately, deserves…We want and deserve tin-can architecture in a tinhorn culture. And we will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed.--Ada Louise Huxtable, "Farewell to Penn Station", New York Times editorial, 30 October 1963
X-Ray Blues

User avatar
RedImperator
Roosevelt Republican
Posts: 16465
Joined: 2002-07-11 07:59pm
Location: Delaware
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-27 03:48am

Going bankrupt has knocked my prestige to -100. This means that my armies start fights with their morale at nearly zero. I discover this by sending a big stack up against a lone Bulgarian regiment and get my ass kicked. Checking the statistics afterwards, it looks like eight of my guys died and that was enough to panic the other 5000. Because that's a totally sensible consequence for bankruptcy. Jesus Christ. I try to make peace with the Bulgarians, only to discover that as the junior member of a personal union, I'm like a vassal--I can't make a separate peace. Wonderful.

Fortunately, both Trebizond and Bulgaria are broke and exhausted from the war with the Turks, and both have bigger neighbors to worry about, so they end the War of Byzantine Succession. I'm at peace finally. For about five minutes. Another consequence of bankruptcy and -100 prestige is that everyone with a funny hat decides to revolt. I get the Pretender revolt, led by some clod named Herkales. Sigh. Send in the army...get my ass kicked despite numbers 2-1 in my favor. This is amazingly fucking lame. The city garrisons surrender almost as soon as they're sieged. I set the speed to max, expecting the game to end once I lose Thrace, my last province.

But no. All that happens is that Georgos II (I didn't even know that was the Emperor's name) gets deposed, along with the useless Regency Council and--ha!--the personal union with Trebizond. All hail Herkales I. Only later will I discover that His Clodness converted the government from Empire to Despotic Monarchy.

Since my army is pretty much useless now, I disband below the force limit and cut my maintenance budget to zero. Same goes for the navy, which is now rotting at anchor in Thrace. God I'm so fucked if I get wardecced, but on the other hand, I'm actually earning money now.

Time to start experimenting with other features. I know I can send merchants to centers of trade. Thrace's center of trade is Venice, so let's see...holy shit, I sent all five merchants and all 5 got in. A new merchant spawns and I send him to Antwerp. Suddenly I'm making decent cash.

Did I mention the mission? At the beginning of the game, I got the mission "Recover the Greek lands". Most of those provinces were in the hands of the Turks, but two remain: Achea, a one-province minor corresponding to the northern half of the Peloponnese, and Athens, in the hands of the Venetians. The Venetians also hold the island of Corfu, west of Greece in the Adriatic. Additionally, the islands of Naxos and Rhodes in the Aegean are one-province minors, as are Crete and Cyprus. I have cores on all of these. If I complete the mission successfully, I get a bucket of goodies, first among these being 10 prestige points, which I desperately need.

Unfortunately, as discussed above, my army is no longer competent, and anyway, all these statelets are enmeshed in a web of alliances and independence guarantees that cover most of Italy. Declaring war on them will be a disaster. But I've got money and....hey, what's the spy button do?

I try Achea first. There's a whole menu of rebellions to sponsor, but the one we're looking for is "patriot", which will create rebels who want to join the Empire. The spy is successful and undetected. Achea has a 1000 man army that goes down like a sack of flour when a 5000 man stack spawns on top of it. In short order, the duchy is restored to its proper rulers. Next up, Athens. Same result. Mission complete! My prestige is up to -90. For an encore, I start revolts in Corfu, Rhodes, Naxos. I get caught in Naxos, but don't suffer any consequences, while I get away with it in Corfu and Rhodes. Unfortunately, I can't sponsor patriot rebels in Crete or Cyprus. Even in my state, I could probably invade and conquer them, but that would be bad for my reputation and probably not worth it for a pair of one province minors far from the mainland. I don't even know if I could defend them.

The Turks appear to have their backs broken. A 2-province Sunni minor wardecs them and fights them to a draw. Elsewhere in the world, Georgia is divided between the Golden Horde and the Timurids and Sicily is absorbed into Naples. Hungary annexes Montenegro and Bosnia, vassalizes Serbia, Bulgaria, and a 1-province rump Wallachia. Shit, this is a problem. I had planned to eventually annex Bulgaria and use the others as buffer states against...Hungary. Hungary is fucking huge--they've been on a tear in central Europe and could stomp me flat.

But I do have good relations with them, so...send gift, royal marriage, guarantee independence, send another gift, offer alliance. Got it! Talk about making lemonade out of lemons there. I now have a 30-province major power covering my entire northern flank, along with his collection of vassals who can get armies into my territory quickly. For the first time since I went bankrupt, I'm not worried about opportunistic wardecs from the likes of the Mamluks, the Golden Horde, or Naples.

So things are looking up. All I need to do is get my prestige back into shape and...oh, dear. It's already decayed to -93. I have a new mission--"Recover the Asia Minor coast", which requires I take a province held by by Trebizond and another one held by the Turks in territory where patriot uprisings won't defect to me. You can win prestige by winning wars, but with my army in shit shape I can't win any wars. I could gain tons of it by conquering Jerusalem, but there's 1000 miles of Mamluks between here and there, and it's not bloody likely they're just going to give it to me, is it? For the time being, my biggest problem is going to be digging out of this hole.
Image
Any city gets what it admires, will pay for, and, ultimately, deserves…We want and deserve tin-can architecture in a tinhorn culture. And we will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed.--Ada Louise Huxtable, "Farewell to Penn Station", New York Times editorial, 30 October 1963
X-Ray Blues

User avatar
Highlord Laan
Jedi Master
Posts: 1102
Joined: 2009-11-08 02:36pm
Location: Christo-fundie Theofascist Dominion of Nebraskistan

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Highlord Laan » 2010-08-27 04:16am

Any way to set yourself up as a Merchant kingdom, to which almost everybody owes you favors?
Never underestimate the ingenuity and cruelty of the Irish.


User avatar
RedImperator
Roosevelt Republican
Posts: 16465
Joined: 2002-07-11 07:59pm
Location: Delaware
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-27 05:03am

Highlord Laan wrote:Any way to set yourself up as a Merchant kingdom, to which almost everybody owes you favors?
Pretty sure there's no way to stop someone from kicking the shit out of you if you're small and he wants to bad enough. Loans come from the "bank", so there's no way to cut off someone's credit and send him into bankruptcy.
Image
Any city gets what it admires, will pay for, and, ultimately, deserves…We want and deserve tin-can architecture in a tinhorn culture. And we will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed.--Ada Louise Huxtable, "Farewell to Penn Station", New York Times editorial, 30 October 1963
X-Ray Blues

User avatar
Thanas
Magister
Magister
Posts: 30205
Joined: 2004-06-26 07:49pm

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Thanas » 2010-08-27 05:16am

How do you find the interface, Red?

Does it work for you?
Whoever says "education does not matter" can try ignorance
------------
A decision must be made in the life of every nation at the very moment when the grasp of the enemy is at its throat. Then, it seems that the only way to survive is to use the means of the enemy, to rest survival upon what is expedient, to look the other way. Well, the answer to that is 'survival as what'? A country isn't a rock. It's not an extension of one's self. It's what it stands for. It's what it stands for when standing for something is the most difficult! - Chief Judge Haywood
------------
My LPs

User avatar
RedImperator
Roosevelt Republican
Posts: 16465
Joined: 2002-07-11 07:59pm
Location: Delaware
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-27 05:45am

Thanas wrote:How do you find the interface, Red?

Does it work for you?
It's more complex than it needs to be and there are some odd organization choices, but it's saved by the amount of useful information provided by mouseover. Just about every figure on any given screen can be exploded by hovering the cursor, which can give you a lot of data. Keeps the main screen from getting too cluttered without resorting to piles of graphs. When things go wrong, it's usually not hard to figure out why.

What's really helpful, and could have easily been made stupid and frustrating (shit, probably was in vanilla) is that for infiltrating spies and missionaries, there's a button right on the province's info box to send them. It's four clicks to select a province, press "spy", pick a mission, and accept. Missionaries are click province, click missionary, click accept.

Another thing I like is that the game's pretty good at telling you if something's going to work before you try it. For example, if I decide I want to ally with, say, Venice, before I actually send a diplomat, I'll get a dialog box that asks if I'm sure and tells me the chances of them accepting before I waste a diplomat. This even applies to the "sue for peace" window. You can open up the peace window, experiment with different offers and demands, and the game tells you in real time if they're likely to accept. Since you have a limited number of diplomats AND there's a cooldown between diplomatic offers to any given country, this is rather helpful. Same goes for spy missions--at the confirmation window, they tell you the chance it will work, the chance you'll get caught, the costs, and--if you mouse over a question mark--what the action actually does (in case you forgot). The only thing it doesn't tell you about is battles, which, okay, fine, but it can get annoying if the 10,000 man stack you thought you were attacking was reinforced with a 15,000 man stack when you weren't looking and you don't get any warning before starting the battle. Unfortunately, there's no way to tell just by looking the size, morale, or composition of an enemy (or friendly) stack. You have to mouse over, which can be annoying if you forget.
Image
Any city gets what it admires, will pay for, and, ultimately, deserves…We want and deserve tin-can architecture in a tinhorn culture. And we will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed.--Ada Louise Huxtable, "Farewell to Penn Station", New York Times editorial, 30 October 1963
X-Ray Blues

User avatar
Ford Prefect
Emperor's Hand
Posts: 8254
Joined: 2005-05-16 04:08am
Location: The real number domain

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Ford Prefect » 2010-08-27 06:09am

RedImperator wrote:And then I go bankrupt.


I cracked up. Yours is an empire of errors, Red. :)
What is Project Zohar?

Here's to a certain mostly harmless nutcase.

User avatar
RedImperator
Roosevelt Republican
Posts: 16465
Joined: 2002-07-11 07:59pm
Location: Delaware
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-27 02:53pm

In which RI finally breaks down and cheats.

How bad is Turkey doing? This bad: Trezibond wardeccs them and overruns their provinces. They're forced to release the province of Smyrna (on the Aegean coast, and one of the provinces I need to complete my current mission) as a 1-province Sunni minor.

Hmm.

My army is in pitiful shape, but it can manage to sit outside a city's walls and wait until the defenders starve. Wardec, march an infantry stack there, wait for the inevitable. Annex. This is actually the first time I've annexed a Sunni country, and the rest of them aren't happy. This is slightly worrisome because at this stage of the game, the biggest powers in the region are Sunni--the Mamluks, based in Egypt but controlling the entire Mediterranean coast up to Syria, the Golden Horde, occupying much of Russia, including the Black Sea coast, and the Timurids, who occupy most of Persia and a slice of the Caucasus constituting most of present-day Armenia and Azerbaijan.

Plus there's Turkey. There's also three small Sunni states holding pieces of the Anatolian peninsula, all allied with one another, and together they might be able to field enough forces to be an annoyance.

Rebels start popping up, and once again my armies are useless for dealing with them, even with maintenance turned back up to full. At this point, I'm completely frustrated with this mechanic. Prestige has fallen below -95 and will be in the basement again soon. The problem is that I have no way at all of raising it or even slowing down the rate of decay. Prestige naturally decays at a low, steady rate, but if you have cores that are held by a non-ally with whom you're at peace, then it can decay much faster. I have 3 held by Bulgaria, 4 by Turkey, 1 each by Crete and Cyprus, and two each by Sunni minors. If I was willing to swallow the hit to my reputation, I could scoop six off the Muslims without much difficulty, and get prestige bonuses in the process, but my army is useless because my prestige is so low. This is the first really irritating game mechanic I've found, and it doesn't even make sense. I mean, how much prestige does Somalia have? That doesn't mean a Somali militia is a bunch of bed-wetting cowards who run for the hills as soon as you kill one of their guys. I'm willing to accept penalties for bankruptcy (if there weren't, there'd be no incentive to manage your finances properly), but this is ridiculous.

So here are my options:

1. Abandon the game. Considering how well I did against Turkey, I'm reluctant to do this.
2. Since the morale hit from low prestige is a fixed value rather than a percentage, wait patiently and hope some future technologies will increase the base value of army morale to the point that even with the penalty, they can still effectively fight.
3. Cheat my prestige back to 0.

Fuck this noise. I take option 3.

Later I feel bad about it, but oh well.

OK, now the army works again. Now the trick is to figure out who to wardec, so the network of alliances brings in the people I want to fight without bringing in too many that I don't. Turkey is guaranteed by the Mamluks and Golden Horde, so that's out. Hmm, what's this? Candar, one of the 2-province minors, is allied with the Turks and the other 2-province minor, but not anyone else. Of course, there's no guarantee some Muslim major won't decide to step in anyway, but if we can get this done fast...

Wardec sent. Turkey and the other minor honor their commitments. So does Hungary and its skirt of vassals. Trebizond decides to sit out the fun. Golden Horde issues an embargo on me, which is probably a prelude to a wardec. Put the fleet in place to block the Marmara Sea, gather up the army, and off we go.

Almost immediately, I've got rebel problems back in Europe, which nearly force me to scrub the war. But the Hungarians make themselves useful and march a stack around the Balkans, wiping out rebels for me. Meanwhile, I start dropping siege stacks all over the peninsula. The enemy is weak, but they are smart enough to avoid getting their armies trapped and wiped out, leading to an annoying cycle of chasing one army in circles while another army lifts sieges. Meanwhile, I forgot to set navy maintenance back to full, so my fleet, still half-rotten and probably missing most of the oars, gets sunk by a much smaller Golden Horde fleet. Oops. Golden Horde makes amphibious landings in Naxos, Rhodes, and Morea. Hungarians deal with them. The Horde doesn't have enough transport capacity to put more than 1000 or 2000 men in an province by sea, so they're easy pickings. I keep watch to the east, but they don't seem to be trying to send an army overland into Asia Minor where it might actually be useful.

Organized opposition in Asia Minor mostly destroyed. Rebel stacks spawn which are actually more formidable than the armies I just killed off. This war is fairly annoying; I should be stomping these guys flat, but there's always something going wrong somewhere. Still, making province. Sunni Minor #2 is completely pacified; I sue for peace. Unfortunately, I can't directly annex him, but I can take one province and vassalize him. The locals celebrate with a peasant revolt. Finally get every Turk province occupied. Turks give up everything except the province of Anatolia (roughly present-day Ankara). Do the same to Candar. Golden Horde accepts a white peace; they've got their own problems up north, so it's not surprising. I start to wonder if I could take and hold Crimea before the proto-Russians do.

Feeling pretty good about myself. Only two little problems: one, I now share a land border with both the Mamluks and the Timurids, and none of my new provinces are generating any income at all and I'm going broke again.
Image
Any city gets what it admires, will pay for, and, ultimately, deserves…We want and deserve tin-can architecture in a tinhorn culture. And we will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed.--Ada Louise Huxtable, "Farewell to Penn Station", New York Times editorial, 30 October 1963
X-Ray Blues

User avatar
Stofsk
Emperor's Hand
Posts: 12924
Joined: 2003-11-10 12:36am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Stofsk » 2010-08-27 03:51pm

we hungarians are useful allies it seems 8)
Image

User avatar
RedImperator
Roosevelt Republican
Posts: 16465
Joined: 2002-07-11 07:59pm
Location: Delaware
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-27 05:04pm

Don't smug it up too much. The Hungarians are going to leave me in a lurch in the next update.
Image
Any city gets what it admires, will pay for, and, ultimately, deserves…We want and deserve tin-can architecture in a tinhorn culture. And we will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed.--Ada Louise Huxtable, "Farewell to Penn Station", New York Times editorial, 30 October 1963
X-Ray Blues

User avatar
Stofsk
Emperor's Hand
Posts: 12924
Joined: 2003-11-10 12:36am
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Stofsk » 2010-08-27 05:08pm

if we left you in the lurch it might be because of a certain Star Trek fanfic that hasn't been updated in awhile because SOMEONE is playing Europa Universalis III

:v
Image

User avatar
Raj Ahten
Jedi Council Member
Posts: 2036
Joined: 2006-04-30 12:49pm
Location: Back in NOVA

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Raj Ahten » 2010-08-28 12:28am

And I thought playing early games as the Turks could be annoying......
Great AAR by the way.

User avatar
RedImperator
Roosevelt Republican
Posts: 16465
Joined: 2002-07-11 07:59pm
Location: Delaware
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-28 02:15am

In this update: saved by the Ming.

Okay, first, the money problems. I now control seven provinces in Asia Minor, and not one of them is paying a dime in taxes. At first I think it's because they're discontinuous with the rest of the Empire, but a quick mouseover shows the real problem: war exhaustion is over 17, and so these provinces--which are already pissed off because they're Sunni and the state religion is Orthodox--have 95% penalties to taxes. My Orthodox provinces are way down in tax revenues, too. Even with minting cranked up to full speed and the army gutted, I need to take out loans just to stay afloat.

Fortunately, His Clodness, Herakles I, has the decency to drop dead and take his pathetic stats with him. In comes Manuel III, whose skills whittle away .08 war exhaustion every month. Being at peace takes off another .08. Once war exhaustion ticks down below 12, my finances start to recover, and I manage to get back in the black before exhausting my credit.

While I sit doing not much, my manpower is steadily regenerating. It tops out at about 20,000, which is bigger than any army I've ever fielded but pretty weaksauce compared to my Sunni neighbors. Worse, I'm falling behind in the tech race because of all the minting I'm doing. This will have long-term consequences.

Just when my war exhaustion drops below 10, the Timurids declare war.

I mutter and curse and put my maintenance up to max. Manuel III goes back to the bank with his hand out, and immediately burns through the loan raising cavalry regiments in Europe. My frontier army is tangling with a 3000 man Timurid stack and doing okay for itself, when suddenly a 12,000 man doomstack led by a competent general shows up.

Urp.

Pause, take stock of the situation. The situation is, I'm boned. I retreat from the battle and order every unit in Asia Minor to make best speed for Thrace, where my two surviving cogs will have to block the straits. I'm so desperate to save what I can that I split the retreating armies into infantry and cavalry forces. The cavalry armies easily race away from the advancing Timurids, crossing through Trebizon's lone province into Bithynia, while the infantry gets overrun and wiped out. Timurids fan out into Asia Minor, dropping siege forces as they go. I move the fleet into the Marmara Sea, figuring at this point that I'm probably going to lose all of Asia Minor.

Oh, and where's Hungary during all this? Safe and snug at home. Not a single one of their units came to help, not even to help defend Thrace. They'd better hope the Timurids don't have a fleet, or else they're going to have someone way worse than the Ottomans to deal with on their southern frontier.

This is what I get for being the shield of Christendom.

And then a miracle happens.

The Timurid doomstack reaches the Aegean coast, stops...and turns around and goes home. So do most of the rest of the Timurid armies, leaving only 2000-man siege forces behind. I check the Timurids' diplomatic status--and somehow, they're at war with the Ming, along with the Golden Horde and the Mamluks. At just about the same time, my new cavalry regiments are ready to go. I combine them with all my other cavalry units and away we go.

For once, I'm the one with the doomstack, and it's...really fun. I lift three Timurid sieges without trying very hard, and then keep moving east. Infantry follows behind to liberate the provinces the Timurids had already taken. I catch about 5000 assorted Timurid stragglers trying to move east and crunch them like bugs.

More good luck! Someone must have had a successful revolt, because there's an independent Sunni minor cutting off the Timurids' westernmost province. I siege that province and win, and suddenly western Asia is clear of the Timurid threat. My war score isn't great, so I can't wring any concessions out of them (like that lonely western province), but they're willing to take a white peace.

Somehow or another, I won a war with a much bigger and tougher power. I suppose I owe the Ming emperor a thank-you note. On the other hand, the war gave me a pretty good lesson on how vulnerable I am to the big Muslim powers, and how useless my allies can be if they don't feel like getting off their asses. My position in Asia Minor is only a little less precarious than my finances. I need to find a way to secure my eastern flank.
Image
Any city gets what it admires, will pay for, and, ultimately, deserves…We want and deserve tin-can architecture in a tinhorn culture. And we will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed.--Ada Louise Huxtable, "Farewell to Penn Station", New York Times editorial, 30 October 1963
X-Ray Blues

User avatar
Highlord Laan
Jedi Master
Posts: 1102
Joined: 2009-11-08 02:36pm
Location: Christo-fundie Theofascist Dominion of Nebraskistan

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Highlord Laan » 2010-08-28 05:05am

Sounds like the Ming Emperor should be getting an offer of his Byzantine counterparts eldest daughter for that one. :lol:
Never underestimate the ingenuity and cruelty of the Irish.

User avatar
Surlethe
HATES GRADING
Posts: 12180
Joined: 2004-12-29 03:41pm
Location: Hiding a pot of gold at the end of the Ricci flow
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Surlethe » 2010-08-28 11:26am

RI wrote:I need to find a way to secure my eastern flank.

Can you fortify passes in the mountains running through Anatolia?
Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp! Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me. I lift my lamp beside the golden door!

User avatar
RedImperator
Roosevelt Republican
Posts: 16465
Joined: 2002-07-11 07:59pm
Location: Delaware
Contact:

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-28 12:43pm

Unfortunately, those mountains are held by the Timurids, for the most part. And they don't help me deal with anyone coming up from Syria, which is where the Mamluks will strike from.

What I'd really like to do is detach some buffer vassals like Georgia and Syria. But forcing the Mamluks to release Syria would entail beating them so badly I could start thinking about retaking the Holy Land, which would be a huge coup (and open up the possibility of the Empire retaking all five of the ancient Christian patriarchal seats). It'd be nice if the Timurids would hurry up and collapse, though if they do, their likely replacement is Persia, so that might not be an improvement.
Image
Any city gets what it admires, will pay for, and, ultimately, deserves…We want and deserve tin-can architecture in a tinhorn culture. And we will probably be judged not by the monuments we build but by those we have destroyed.--Ada Louise Huxtable, "Farewell to Penn Station", New York Times editorial, 30 October 1963
X-Ray Blues

User avatar
StarshipTitanic
Sith Marauder
Posts: 4475
Joined: 2002-07-03 09:41pm
Location: Massachusetts

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby StarshipTitanic » 2010-08-28 07:07pm

If you broke the Ottomans, you've won. There will never be another challenge. The Timurids will disintegrate within decades and Persia will never threaten you. The Mamluks are too poor to be a challenge because all their provinces are the wrong religion.

If you're going to continue, then just conquer enemy provinces unless you're into role-playing (which I doubt since you're cheating). Armenian and Georgian provinces are in your culture group so you should be taking them whenever possible (no culture penalty and most should still be Orthodox). Why are you ignoring the Balkans? I actually don't know if you are because I haven't read your posts very carefully, but if you are then stop. The Greek culture provinces are decently wealthy and both they and the South Slavic provinces should still be Orthodox. The crusader states there are especially easy targets because they're wrong religion and culture and you get a CB against Catholics, I think.
"Man's unfailing capacity to believe what he prefers to be true rather than what the evidence shows to be likely and possible has always astounded me...God has not been proven not to exist, therefore he must exist." -- Academician Prokhor Zakharov

"Hal grabs life by the balls and doesn't let you do that [to] hal."

"I hereby declare myself master of the known world."

User avatar
StarshipTitanic
Sith Marauder
Posts: 4475
Joined: 2002-07-03 09:41pm
Location: Massachusetts

Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby StarshipTitanic » 2010-08-28 07:08pm

You're also getting behind in technology because you're not in the "latin" tech group. You're in the "eastern" group so your research is penalized. See the Westernise decision? Work towards that.
"Man's unfailing capacity to believe what he prefers to be true rather than what the evidence shows to be likely and possible has always astounded me...God has not been proven not to exist, therefore he must exist." -- Academician Prokhor Zakharov

"Hal grabs life by the balls and doesn't let you do that [to] hal."

"I hereby declare myself master of the known world."


Return to “Library”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests