Todays diary is about that agglomeration of states which Voltaire thought was neither Holy, nor Roman, nor an Empire. As a Swede I am of course bound to concur. Cum Deo et victribus armis! Even so, the HRE wielded a lot of power, and in another world, full of little eagles, crowns and, indeed, Krauts, it might eventually have coalesced into a proper nation. And that's what we're all about here at Paradox; alternate history! Well, that and authority, but more on that later.
In Heir to the Throne, we are adding more features to the HRE than it had members. Well, maybe not, but still quite a few. First off, a new concept called Imperial Authority. Imperial Authority represents the amount of control the Emperor exerts over the princes of the empire. It can be gained or lost in many ways, for example by answering the call of members under attack by foreign powers, or by liberating an annexed HRE member. The main reason for having Imperial Authority is to execute the special decisions that will allow skilled Holy Roman Emperors to tighten the reins on the member princes and eventually unite the disparate fiefdoms under one banner.
We are also adding at least two new diplomatic actions: "Bestow Imperial Grace" and "Enforce Religious Unity". The first works like "Send Gift", except it costs Imperial Authority rather than gold and gives a greater boost to relations. The second is a demand for conversion. If the errant princeling accepts, the religion changes and the Emperor gains more authority. If he refuses, the Emperor gains a special Casus Belli. (Speaking of which, in line with the new CB system, princes of the HRE are now allowed to fight each other without incurring the wrath of the Emperor, provided they have a valid Casus Belli.)
Finally, we have the "Imperial Ban" Casus Belli, which the emperor can employ against any non-member country with provinces that are part of the Empire. This only becomes available after a certain reform decision has been taken at the cost of Imperial Authority. (You will have noticed I've mentioned authority a lot. That's because at Paradox, we like authority; especially Johan.)
Now, while the above system is essentially done, the HRE window is unfortunately not, so I cannot provide you with a screenshot of the altered interface. Instead, I will let you feast your eyes on another new feature, cruelly allowing your imaginations to run wild until the next diary entry.