I've had enough of reading about AAR's where you play versus the computer with little or none challenge at all.
When you start playing against human players, the playing field is actually much more even. No more land-trade, no more diplomatic miracles, no more annexation of China. In multiplayer games, the playing field is rough and tough. There is no reload if you suddenly fail a battle. There is no neville for those peaces you think you deserve.
The Gathering Storm is a MP Vicky Gaming group that have been going on for 2 sessions now with a pretty stable core of players. All games have so far been completed and to much delight and enjoyment for those involved. It is a group which plays on US time saturday evenings.
We are playing with 1.03c vanilla Vicky, some MP mods decreasing the growth of Russia to the growth that Germany have and increasing the growth of France and Austria to normal 1.0 growth are implemented.
I have gotten UK this game.
I'll list the roster of human players here:
Current Game Year:
2nd April 1881 (last update in 1st June 1872, not updated after session of 1877)
Wars since last session
England vs Russia, Germany (England gets Denmark as satellite, Germany gets to claim Senegal and then returns English claims. England gets rest of German and Russian claims overseas)
England vs Johore (Johore annexed)
France vs Thailand (Thailand annexed)
France vs Burma (Burma annexed)
France vs Egypt (Egypt annexed)
Spain vs Persia (Eastern part of Persia taken)
USA vs Mexico (Mexico satellited, Yucatan peninsula taken)
USA vs Texas (Texas sattelited)
Russia vs Kokand (Kokand annexed)
Russia vs Afghanistan (Afghanistan annexed)
Italy (AI) vs Austria (AI) (still in progress)
Rank, Prestige, Military, Industry
(numbers in columns are standings for last update)
(percentage for increase/decrease since last update)
1, 2476, 293, 7625 (1, 2343, 271, 5086)(5.7%, 8.1%, 49.9%)
2, 345, 360, 6380 (3, 429, 491, 3730)(-19.6%, -26.7%, 71%)
3, 1880, 288, 3588 (2, 1785, 452, 4777)(5.3%, -36.3%, -24.9%)
4, 1502, 281, 1000 (4, 806, 259, 647)(86.4%, 8.5%, 54.7%)
5, 2031, 71, 487 (5, 1640, 67, 315)(23.8%, 6%, 54.5%)
6, 212, 99, 1215 (6, 270, 124, 1003)(-21.5%, -20.2%, 21.3%)
7, 687, 117, 493 (8, 551, 15, 367)(24.7%, 680%, 34.3%)
8, 920, 99, 179 (7, 1004, 102, 79)(-8.4%, -2.9%, 126.6%)
9, 166, 96, 387 (9, 222, 128, 470)(-25%, -25%, -17.7%)
Roster current (and number of sessions played)
UK - clampen (8)
Russia - dunklerkaiser (8)
Austria - AI (4 1/2), CCbasin(3), Beezneez (1/2)
France - Raul (7), AI (1)
Germany - Husayn (8)
OE - wilcox (7), AI (1)
Italy - fj44 (3), Gabe(1), AI(1), Revo (1), AI (2)
USA - Revo (3), AI (5)
Spain - Germax (3), AI(4), CCbasin (1)
I am not sure if those are their nicks on the paradox forums however it is their nicks on the blood and iron forums from where these MP games are arranged.
This AAR will be told with the UK perspective on things. I am going to follow a young English journalist, Alexander Whitman, in his very early 20's. Note that of course I have only the slightest idea of the customs and traditions nor the etiquette and mentality of the 1830's however I will try still try to write this with this young journalist's perspective. The audience of this journalist will be noone as this is a diary he will be writing.
By writing this AAR, I will of course limit my strategical surprise to my fellow gamers. However playing with the UK I don't really feel that this is too that great a hindrance as UK initially starts with the best position in the game.
The situation in 1836
The foreign policies of UK are to maintain status quo. The slowly emerging Pax Britannia must not be jeopardized. England have signed a joint alliance with Russia, Prussia and the Ottoman Empire. Together they pose a formidable force that can dictate the world order for good and for worse. So far status quo is maintained. England have promised the independency and territorial integrity of all Asian countries of noteworth (OOC: this is to prevent a land-grabbing policy of China/Korea/Japan mainly)
France and Spain have also signed an alliance.
Austria and USA have no alliances.
The only trouble at the moment for England is the question of the Netherlands. Right now Belgium is a sovereign country. France have argued for a French annexation of the lower parts of Belgium. England have so far been keeping a hands-off policy on the potent gunpowder keg. Will the new state of Belgium be divided and left as a rump state by France? Will Netherlands get to re-annex some or perhaps whole of it? Or will Belgium remain free?
It is in this situation that our dear Alexander finds himself in.