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

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

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-29 04:29pm

Erm, yeah. My entire opening strategy was to block the Bosporus and overrun the Balkans unmolested. Three of the four Bulgarian provinces broke away as Bulgaria and then became a Hungarian vassal before I could deal with them, but everything south of Thrace is in my hands, including Rhodes, Naxos, and Corfu. I captured a few provinces from the Turks directly and then the rest fell to patriot revolutions.

Anyway, back to the show.

The victory celebrations are necessarily muted. War exhaustion is back up and my financial situation is catastrophic. I'm up to my ears in debt, the Asia Minor provinces are paying very little, and I have to keep minting to avoid bankruptcy, which is a bit of a problem because inflation is already over 25 and still climbing. This is why I'm falling behind--even the Muslims are ahead of me, so it's not because I'm in the wrong tech group. Unfortunately, I took "Bureaucracy" as my national idea when I hit Gov 4 instead of national bank, so there's very little I can do to mitigate it. Even with minting, I'm just barely in the black year to year. I can't afford to send merchants to centers of trade, I can't afford temples, and I can't afford missionaries, so there's not much I can do to improve my finances.

So fuck it. I check to see when the loans are coming due. If I can clear them, that's three ducats a month I'm not throwing down a hole, which is the difference between a sensible budget and minting until the coins have less actual gold in them than an equivalent mass of seawater. To do it, I'll have to crank minting to max for a few months as each loan comes due, but fuck it.

Three game years pass and I clear the loans. Inflation hits 28, but at the end of it, I can turn minting all the way back down. War exhaustion is falling and stability is going up, which increases tax revenues and allows me to disband army units since I'm not constantly dealing with revolts.

Elsewhere in the world: Castille has reduced Portugal to one province and Aragon to three, with only one on the Iberian mainland. England is in the process of swallowing Scotland and Ireland. France is coalescing--Burgundy is a few discontiguous provinces and the Netherlands have been swallowed by a blue tide coming from the other direction. Lithuania is a big maroon blob that extends from the Baltic to the Ukraine and deep into present-day Belorussia. The proto-Russians are having a rough time of it--Sweden has carved off big chunks of Novgorod and Muscovy only holds Moscow. Germany and Italy are still jumbled messes. Hungary is a blob in southeastern Europe stretching from the Adriatic to the Black Sea and north all the way to Poland--Serbia and Wallachia have disappeared. The Mamluks are moving an awful lot of troops into Syria.

1453 comes and goes. Nothing of interest happens.

The peace, unfortunately, can't last. The Mamluks declare war and bring their entire network of alliances into it on their side--the Timurids, the Golden Horde, Morocco, Algeria, Oman, Yemen, and the surviving Turkish states. The enemy has, combined, about 100,000 men under arms, and while some of them will never make it to Asia Minor, the Mamluks alone have 40,000 poised to invade Anatolia. On my side is Hungary and Trebizon, and Hungary, I notice, doesn't seem to be mobilizing.

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

Postby The Vortex Empire » 2010-08-29 05:05pm

Only intervention by the Almighty Lord, or a military genius, can bring you victory from this disgrace!

You're fucked.

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

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-29 06:14pm

I actually make a decent show of it for a while. As I did against the Timurids, I retreat to Thrace and start cranking out units in Europe. Military maintenance back up to max, minting back to full speed, war taxes, loans. I take a chance on hiring a general and get a Shock 6 (!).

Organize the army into two parts. The first is a 20,000 man cavalry stack led by the shock 6 general. The second is a stack of infantry I plan to use to siege captured and, possibly, enemy provinces. The Mamluks help by spreading out their army. Their main stack is 25,000 men, led by the Mamluk sultan himself, about half cavalry and half infantry, with smaller 2000-5000 man stacks roaming around sieging provinces. The main stack marches straight across the central Anatolian plateau. Rather than wait for a siege to complete, they assault and capture cities almost immediately. However, this costs them a lot of men and morale, and this deep into enemy territory, they can't recover their numbers that quickly...

By the time they reach Bithynia, the stack's depleted down to about 12,000. Their first assault fails and now's my chance. I cross the Dardanalles and hit the Mamluks from the landward side with 20,000 fresh cavalry. Success! The Mamluks retreat back to central Anatolia. I follow, repeatedly hitting the stack--in fact, I often outrun it and force them onto the offensive where I have a terrain advantage. The infantry crosses over and starts laying sieges. This is the advantage of an all-cavalry stack. If I can just corner it and kill it, or wear it down to nothing, and maybe kill the Sultan himself...

No such luck; the remains of the Mamluk army fall back to Syria, and now I've got the Golden Horde entering the peninsula. Just small stacks that I can kill easily, but they're just the advance guard. Hungary shares a border with the Golden Horde in the eastern Ukraine, but they refuse to attack. My own cav stack is down under 10,000 with all the attrition and battlefield losses. Infantry is in better shape. I try to rest the cavalry to rebuilt its numbers, but I can never let it sit for more than a month before there's some crisis to attend to. War exhaustion is building rapidly and I'm getting revolts back in Europe.

White peace? No. How about if I offered the Mamluks a few provinces in eastern Anatolia? No to that. Just as an experiment, offer to release the Ottoman Empire, a peace offering worth 102 war score. No.

Hungary continues to sit on its ass. Fuck those guys. Seriously.

If I stay on the defensive, I'm going to get ground to nothing. My manpower pool is depleted; I can't replace any more losses. My only hope is to get the warscore high enough in my favor that the Mamluks will quit for a reasonable tribute on my part. Invade Syria, wiping out isolated Mamluk stacks. Infantry follows, begins sieging Aleppo, Damascus, and Beiruit. Send the cavalry into Judea to hit a small pile of damaged Mamluk armies.

I'm winning the battle, but Mamluk numbers keep rising. Fresh troops from Egypt are entering the fight until the Sultan is sitting at the head of a 15,000 man force against 5000 exhausted Byzantine cavalry. Out, out, out! Cavalry retreats back to Anatolia; infantry stacks follow as best they can, but most of it doesn't make it out of Syria; the Mamluks are overrunning the siege forces so fast that the next one in line can't get away even with a head start.

Rebels start capturing provinces. Naxos, Athens, Achea. Nationalist revolt in Albania. Big Golden Horde stack smashes through 1000 Trebizonians defending their capital and enters the Anatolian plain. Everything I've got makes a beeline to Thrace.

Hungary takes white peace with the Mamluks. Thanks for nothing, you fuckfaces.

Macedonia falls. The rebels are mostly just peasant mobs, but fuck me there's a lot of them. Even with minting at max I'm losing money. Inflation over 30 and climbing one full point a year.

Anatolian provinces all fall. Mamluks still refuse peace offers. Golden Horde fleet clears my navy out of the Sea of Marmara. 20,000 Mamluks cross the Bosporus. My army folds up like a cheap card table.

Time to take stock. I figure I can probably eventually settle for the loss of all of Asia Minor, Albania (given I have no way to stop the rebels, Albania's almost certainly lost anyway), maybe Morea. I think I can recover from that--I would still hold Thrace and the best Greek provinces, and with another round of bankruptcy, I'll clear the loans. My prestige is already so low that dropping all the way to -100 won't hurt much, and anyway, it's probably inevitable. I might have to scale back my ambitions, but time doesn't favor the Muslims--the Timurids are already coming apart, the Golden Horde is one dead Khan from collapsing into revolt, and the Mamluks and going to look awfully tempting to Castille and France before too long. I could recover my reputation, and with a competent emperor, maybe make some alliances with the big western powers. There's always a chance (probably a good one, actually), that the Hungarians will decide Greece and the Balkans are too tempting to pass up and finish me off, but who knows--if I can ally with Poland or Lithuania (or both), they probably wouldn't risk it. If I can hang around for long enough and stay friendly with the west, maybe I could get into the colonization game. Not as a great power, obviously, but maybe I could snag a Caribbean island or a little piece of Africa. Wouldn't that be something? A Byzantine colony in the New World. It wasn't what I had in mind when I started, but it's a lot better than Byzantium's real history.

Inflation is at 35.

That's the killer stat right there. It's a 35% tax on everything--armies, buildings, spies, and most importantly, technology. Even converting to Latin tech (which requires four slider moves before I can even attempt it), I'll just keep falling further and further behind. If the Byzantine Empire has a future, it's as Europe's sick man, in a time period where sick men were put out of their misery by their neighbors.

Fuck it. Reload.

And this is where I discover that I'm in a cul-de-sac. No matter what I do, I can't avoid the war with the Mamluks and I can't win it. Somewhere or another, I blundered into a no-win scenario. Most outcomes, in fact, are worse--in more than one, Hungary dishonors the alliance and then, midwar, wardec me and scoop up all my European provinces. This game has become my Kobayashi Maru.

This just isn't going to work, but I'm not willing to totally abandon this timeline. Fortunately, I make a lot of saves. All I have to do is figure out where I fucked up, go back to that the closest save to that point, and change history.

That's right. Byzantine time travel.
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Thanas » 2010-08-30 01:20am

I would advise you to start in 1402. Byz get an extra province right from the start and it is relatively easy to pick off the minors, so that you can take on the Ottomans with five or six provinces.
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-30 01:25am

Thanas wrote:I would advise you to start in 1402. Byz get an extra province right from the start and it is relatively easy to pick off the minors, so that you can take on the Ottomans with five or six provinces.
That's what I did (actually 1399). The next starting point is 30 May 2153, so that--for obvious reasons--doesn't work for a Byzantine campaign.

I identified my mistake and did better with the reload. But I'll save that update for later.
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Thanas » 2010-08-30 01:31am

RedImperator wrote:
Thanas wrote:I would advise you to start in 1402. Byz get an extra province right from the start and it is relatively easy to pick off the minors, so that you can take on the Ottomans with five or six provinces.
That's what I did (actually 1399). The next starting point is 30 May 2153, so that--for obvious reasons--doesn't work for a Byzantine campaign./quote]


No, if use the slider to change the year to 1402 (or 3) then you also get Larissa right off the start.

Not the case in 1399.
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RogueIce » 2010-08-30 02:18am

RedImperator wrote:The next starting point is 30 May 2153

:?:

Yeah not trying to be a smartass, but I'm curious. The best way I can rationalize that is 1532-ish?
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-08-30 04:29am

RogueIce wrote:
RedImperator wrote:The next starting point is 30 May 2153

:?:

Yeah not trying to be a smartass, but I'm curious. The best way I can rationalize that is 1532-ish?
1453. I have no idea why I added 700 years to that.

No, if use the slider to change the year to 1402 (or 3) then you also get Larissa right off the start.

Not the case in 1399.
Huh, didn't know that. Anyway, it's not a big deal right now--I figured out where I went wrong last game and I'm doing substantially better.
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Nieztchean Uber-Amoeba » 2010-08-30 04:34am

RedImperator wrote:
RogueIce wrote:
RedImperator wrote:The next starting point is 30 May 2153

:?:

Yeah not trying to be a smartass, but I'm curious. The best way I can rationalize that is 1532-ish?
1453. I have no idea why I added 700 years to that.

You're both a history man and a futurist, and gained a momentary insight into the fact that within 140 years the Byzantine Empire will be reborn?

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

Postby Ford Prefect » 2010-08-30 05:18am

Nieztchean Uber-Amoeba wrote:You're both a history man and a futurist, and gained a momentary insight into the fact that within 140 years the Byzantine Empire will be reborn?


I bet you there is a novel with this very premise.

RedImperator wrote:That's right. Byzantine time travel.


I bet it's related to this novel too.
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Nieztchean Uber-Amoeba » 2010-08-30 05:35am

but red is a novelist too so will he also be the nostradauthor of the return of the house of komnenos

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

Postby Thanas » 2010-08-30 08:11am

Nieztchean Uber-Amoeba wrote:but red is a novelist too so will he also be the nostradauthor of the return of the house of komnenos


Seeing as how the House of Komnenos got extinct, no chance.

You have better chance with the Palaiologoi, but then you'd either have to support the Habspurgs or the House of Monaco as they are the only nobility left with Palaiologoi blood.
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby atg » 2010-08-30 08:38am

Thanas wrote:Seeing as how the House of Komnenos got extinct, no chance.

RedImperator wrote:That's right. Byzantine time travel.

The Doctor will come to restore the glory of the Byzantines.

dum-dum-dum-dum, dum-dum-dum-dum, wooooOOOOOooooooo
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Tritio » 2010-08-30 09:49am

I tried the same thing over the weekend. Try starting in 1405 when Byz has 4 provinces and a weakened Ottoman Empire. Declare war on Achaea, Epirus and Athens before you unpause. That will also lead you to war with Venice and Naples because of guarantees. Which is great, because it also allows you to grab Corfu, Crete, and Southern Italy. After that, you should have a decent base from which to expand. Here's my situation 40 years later.

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

Postby Nieztchean Uber-Amoeba » 2010-08-30 04:36pm

Thanas wrote:
Nieztchean Uber-Amoeba wrote:but red is a novelist too so will he also be the nostradauthor of the return of the house of komnenos


Seeing as how the House of Komnenos got extinct, no chance.

says you

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

Postby Thanas » 2010-08-30 08:12pm

Is that a challenge? :P
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RogueIce » 2010-08-30 11:44pm

Ford Prefect wrote:
Nieztchean Uber-Amoeba wrote:You're both a history man and a futurist, and gained a momentary insight into the fact that within 140 years the Byzantine Empire will be reborn?


I bet you there is a novel with this very premise.

Does the Imperium of Man Byzantine Empire IN SPACE over in SDNW4 count?
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby The Yosemite Bear » 2010-08-31 12:06am

Or Drake+Stirling's Forge series
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Darth Fanboy » 2010-08-31 03:57pm

In this Alternate Universe Red defends Constantinople from the Turks.

In this Alternate Universe They Might Be Giants still get to write that song.
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Nieztchean Uber-Amoeba » 2010-08-31 06:06pm

tmbg only covered that song

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

Postby Thanas » 2010-08-31 06:13pm

I find that after a certain period of time, countries just gang up on you in EU III. There is literally no long peace period as countries will just wardec you over and over again.
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby RedImperator » 2010-09-01 10:50am

Yeah, I discover that later on.

OK, to the wayback machine. Where did I go wrong? Two main problems, I think: first, by mismanaging my finances early, I get into an inflation hole I can never escape. Second, by overrunning the Ottomans in the 1420s, it leaves me with a land border with the Mamluks when I'm still weak and recovering from two solid decades of war.

So let's roll back to the end of the first war, when I'm holding all of the Balkans and Bithynia. The Ottomans are furious, but there's nothing they can do--they're war-exhausted, broke, and without their most valuable provinces, including their former capital. Critically, I still have my fleet and, hence, the ability to close the Bosporus and the Dardanelles at will. I can raid Asia Minor freely while my own core territories are safe from attack, barring the occasional amphibious landing. Hungary and I are still brosefs, so my northern flank is secure. Crete manages to break away from the Venetians, saving me the trouble of starting a war with them to get it back. I send a mere 2000-man stack to take the island and annex it. Now the Aegean flank is secure, too. If nothing else, at least I can see incoming enemy fleets from the south and west.

The AI hyenas descend on the still-twitching corpse of the Ottoman Empire. Mamluks, Timurids, Golden Horde, and a grab-bag of smaller Muslim states. Morocco (!) is the big winner, taking control of the Turks' eastern provinces from the Gulf of Cyprus to the Black Sea. Smyrna, the last Turkish province on the Aegean coast breaks away as an independent state (I control Bithyina and Trezibon controls Bursa). By the end of it, the Turks are a one-province minor who only hold the province of Anatolia. South of them is another OPM, Karaman, and to their north is the two-province minor Candar. Aquilea, who I forgot I was even allied to, snagged the province of Antalya in the previous war.

I sit out that war and instead sink time and effort into making good friends with Trezibon. Get relations to +200 with an alliance and royal marriage and they accept diplo vassalization. Start the countdown to diplo annexation.

Morocco declares war on the Ottomans, along with Candar and Smyrna. Karaman and the Mamluks are their allies. If I don't get in on this action, the Ottomans will be annexed and I'll lose my chance to snag Anatolia for myself. Declare war on Karaman, in order to get the Ottomans to wardec me without dragging the Mamluks into it. Doesn't work--Mamluks add me to their shit list, but they have to fight their way through the Moroccans to get to me. Hungary and Trezibon honor their commitments and Hungary actually sends forces to Asia Minor. Beat everyone to Anatolia and siege the province. Race another force to Karaman and siege that, too.

Both OPMs are conquered and annexed in short order. Mamluks fight through Moroccan holdings but run into combined Byzantine-Hungarian forces and get nowhere. Mamluks get bored and quit.

Victoly! As a bonus, since I now have a border with a Latin tech country, westernization appears on my list of national decisions. I need a bunch of slider moves to open it, though.

Karamanese nationalists immediately try to spoil the victory party. I kick them out of Karaman itself and they invade Antalya instead. Works for me. Stand down most of the army. Finish Gov 4 and take National Bank as my national idea. Inflation is actually going down.

Antalya falls to rebels. Aquilea doesn't seem interested in keeping it. Antalya declares independence, resurrecting Karaman for about a month until I wardec them and annex it. Smyrna has no allies, which is a bad idea for a OPM; wardec and annex them, too. Trebizon refuses to be diplo-annexed.

Nationalist uprising in Smyrna. Chase them into Bursa; don't lift a finger to help Trezibon kick them out. Bursa declares independence, Bursa gets annexed by Byzantium. At this point, my reputation is pretty bad, but the only country in a position to do anything about it, Morocco, is too busy elsewhere to wardec me.

Timurids wardec Trebizon, overrun it, annex it. Serves them right.

I notice that without that Acquilean province in Asia Minor, I no longer share a border with a Latin tech country. This disturbs me, because I really want to westernize. Hmm. Naples is looking pretty weak and pathetic...

Naples also has a 30-ship fleet, so a sea invasion would be tricky. Get military access from half the Italian states and march overland through Hungary and down the peninsula. Stage the army in Abbruzzi (my ancestral homeland!), wardec Naples (Hungary dishonors, ending the alliance), overrun them. Their thirty ship fleet never leaves port, so I cross the Straits of Mussina and overrun Sicily, too. Take four of their five provinces, leaving only Napoli itself, which is promptly annexed by Genoa. "Westernization" reappears as a national decision, though it'll be decades before I can actually take it. Fortunately, the slider moves I need--towards centralization and free subjects--are ones I want to make anyway.

Italians sure are pissy about being conquered by their rightful rulers. Many fun-filled decades of putting down revolts in Sicily and the bootheel of Italy await.

Missionaries have success in Asia Minor; I'm rolling Islam back out of the peninsula, making it much easier to govern. The Timurids wardec me for some reason. Morocco gives me military access and I capture Trebizon and Erserum. Fucking Mongols won't part with either in a peace deal, but Erserum breaks away and joins me anyhow. Finally settle, figuring I'll grab Trebizon later.

Settle in for a few years of peace and building--temples in every province. With the exception of the Italian rebellions, things are going pretty well. Mamluks finally get their revenge on Morocco, kicking the shit out of them in Asia Minor and grabbing most of their possession--and finally giving me a land border.

Hungary is starting to stack up troops along the border in the Balkans. Out of nowhere, Bohemia offers an alliance and I take it. They're on Hungary's north and I have a feeling I'm going to need the help soon.

Yep. Hungary, with Bavaria as their ally, declares war. Now shit gets interesting.
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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
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Surlethe
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Surlethe » 2010-09-01 11:54pm

Why is this sitting so low in Testing? There's no fucking way I'm letting this die. This is a golden thread.
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!

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

Postby The Yosemite Bear » 2010-09-02 12:09am

off to games someone, oooohhh the second thread to graduate this week
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Re: itt RI plays Europa Universalis III (Heir to the Throne)

Postby Stofsk » 2010-09-02 12:29am

Thanas wrote:I find that after a certain period of time, countries just gang up on you in EU III.

doesn't that happen in like every tbs ever made
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