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Thread: Rome AARisen - a Byzantine AAR

  1. #3121
    Lt. General humancalculator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by General_BT View Post
    Sometime down the line (maybe when we reach some milestone), I'll be really evil and post the current version of the prospective EU3 map I have made.
    This thing might be going to EU3!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    I think i just fainted.
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  2. #3122
    Lt. General humancalculator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Avalanchemike View Post
    How is the conquest of Persia not a milestone? You already have Italy, Egypt and the Empire Proper, what more do you need?
    The world.
    Si Vis Pacem, Para Bellum (If you want peace, prepare for war) - Pvblivs Flavivs Vegetivs Renatvs

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  3. #3123
    Basileus Romaion Nikolai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by humancalculator View Post
    This thing might be going to EU3!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


    I think i just fainted.
    You didn't know?
    Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. -Isa 41:10

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  4. #3124
    Lt. General humancalculator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nikolai View Post
    You didn't know?
    Nope.

    I do know though.
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  5. #3125
    Basileus Romaion Nikolai's Avatar
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    He revealed that a looong time ago. I look forward to it.
    Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. -Isa 41:10

    For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. -John 3:16
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  6. #3126
    The Avatar of Time 4th Dimension's Avatar
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    How many more years to EU?
    160?
    And we are some 170? years in CK? So we are half way trough?
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  7. #3127
    Blasted Conniving Roman General_BT's Avatar
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    Yes, it's my intention to try to get this thing all the way to EU3, and then start an AAR there (probably titled Rome AsundAAR, or something of that ilk ). My original plan was to go to 1399 then straight to IN, but I'm now debating ending things in 1379 (death of Isaakios II, ascension of Anastasios II), and using the reign of Anastasios as a "prelude" in the EU3 version to the chaotic, messed up world of 15th century Romanion.

    And for those of you who can't wait, I have a special treat--the current version of the EU3 map!




    It's no where near complete, and I'm purposefully leaving countries unlabeled so you all have something to puzzle over. I've also left the wider world outside of Romanion, some of her children, and Africa blank--I have yet to decide, for example, what's going to happen with the Mongols. I will say this--not every country on there is a Roman successor state, and states that are shown are prone to some... shall we say... "interesting" events I've got in my head for the 15th century to make this even more topsy turvy...
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  8. #3128
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    Assuming that we all still are alive by the time you reach it, what would you say to going through Vicky with this?
    And the Lord spake, saying, "First shalt thou take out the Holy Pin, then shalt thou count to three, no more, no less. Three shall be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the counting shall be three. Four shalt thou not count, neither count thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the third number, be reached, then lobbest thou thy Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch towards thy foe, who being naughty in my sight, shall snuff it." Amen.

  9. #3129
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    Independent Egypt, strong Persian League, great Steppe-Danish Empire, loose Italian federation dominated by the Capatinate?
    Weakened Central Empire, and a strong Western Empire still holding Iberia and also Aquitania?
    Malian Empire is pushing northwards, Islamic Reconquista?

    Fall of the Komnenoi?

  10. #3130
    Blasted Conniving Roman General_BT's Avatar
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    “Who was Gog and Magog? Who sent these serpents to chastise us? We had the world at our fingertips, and squeezed luxury, sin, and hedonism out of it all. And what is our reward? These new Persians, led by a new Nebuchadnezzar, took it from us. They are not Gog and Magog. They are the chastisers, the punishers meant to drive us out of decadence and into a godly mind!” – Ibn Tamiyya, 1289.




    Konstantinopolis
    December 12th, 1237


    Simon Akropolites, Patriarch of Constantinople, was normally not one for chess games. They were far too slow paced for his taste—he preferred contemplation, teaching, and the joys of writing sermons for the Hagia Sophia.

    Yet, when the man across from him had sent in a humble request to place chess, the Patriarch of the most powerful segment of Christendom felt compelled to agree to a game.

    “Bishop to rook,” the old man muttered. “Really a wise move?”

    The man across from him was playing aggressively, even recklessly—something that didn’t surprise Simon, considering the man’s actions in life. Yet the Patriarch, who favored simple, well considered, and thoughtful moves to be best, found himself on the defensive. The man’s recklessness was in fact calculated…

    “It left your queen exposed for me in two rounds,” the man smiled, his chains of office jingling softly in the quiet of the Patriarch’s palace. “A wise move indeed, I would say.”

    “Hmmm,” Simon grunted.

    “You can clearly see it, Holiness. You don’t need to put on your senile act, not in front of a friend,” the man said quietly, before sipping on a cup of wine.

    Simon frowned, desperately trying to move his rook away. “What do you mean?”

    “I know,” the man said, sliding his rook over to block the Patriarch’s move, “that you, like I, are more capable than you seem.”

    “My…”

    “Do not try to cover it up with simperings of inability, Holiness,” the man cut him off and held up a jeweled hand. “You are Patriarch, which in my eyes, means you know how to play the games of this city and Church far better than any lord who was merely born to hits station. Your father was a butcher, was he not?”

    Simon’ frown deepened.

    “What do you want of me?” The Patriarch leaned back. The chess game was done. The game of politics took precedence. “You compliment my abilities, but it’s been my experience that anyone that offers me kind words usually wants some kind actions in return.”

    The man smiled. “Oh, nothing much. Some… events of great import…” the man dragged out the words in Greek, his finger toying idly with his king, “will shortly come to pass. When the time comes, I might need you to perform one of your most solemn religious duties quickly… and efficiently.”




    The Patriarch nodded slowly. “And if this…duty…” he said slowly, mind wrapping around what the man was asking, “was performed to your satisfaction, what will I, and especially the Holy Church, receive in return?”

    “I can promise the Saracen-lover will not be Emperor.”

    “…and?” Simon leaned back, folding his gnarled fingers behind his head. “A convenient bout of the pox could accomplish that. Tell me again… why should the Holy Church work to the… convenience… of your ends?” When the man merely smiled, Akropolites leaned forward. “That ‘Saracen-lover’ is respected by the Patriarchs of Alexandria and Jerusalem. Why should Konstantinopolis trouble the unity of the Church over him when God could move against him for us?”

    “God often moves through the actions of men,” the man replied, smile still gracing his lips. “Imperial restrictions on converting the Muslims of Persia, Arabia and Mesopotamia will be lifted,” the man echoed the Patriarch’s move. “It is a sad day when ambition and power disrupt the work of saving souls. Mind you, I am no Andreas Kaukadenos,” the man added with a smile. The Patriarch chuckled darkly as well. “However, if done properly, I think God’s Work in these heathen lands could be accomplished.”

    “A crusade, then?” the Patriarch said, rolling the word around in his mouth. In Greek, it had a distasteful tone, a reminder of the days of old when Latins tromped through the Mediterranean, spreading chaos and destruction in “the name of God.” It brought a slight shiver to Simon’s spine.

    “No,” the man said quickly. “We Greeks have more subtlety than that. I would leave the details to you and your compatriots…wise understanding of the situation on the ground.”

    Simon smiled grimly. So the man and his accomplices would shunt responsibility off onto the Church for that most desired yet most delicate of goals.

    “…and what else?” the Patriarch leaned forward, and started idling pushing around one of his own pawns, trying to decide if he was the pawn, or the man who he was talking to. “We have ways of converting the heathen now, even without state support.”

    The man’s face darkened, a sharp look haunting his features for a moment, before an echoing grim smile came to his lips. “I see my assessment of you was accurate, Holiness. Fine,” he sighed, leaning forward himself. “Baghdad, Esfahan, and the Hejaz would be turned into Metropolitanates, with Church legal as well as spiritual authority. Add to this,” the smile changed from grim to something sinister, “we would begin the process of pruning this damn family’s tree. Considering the dearth of dynatoi about these days, which loyal servant of Christ’s Vice Regent would receive lands to watch in the name of the Empire?”

    Simon smiled now as well, and with a flick, knocked over his king.



    ==========*==========


    Outside of Mecca, Hejaz

    December 17th, 1237


    Thomas II Komnenos was not a happy man.

    It had little to do with the sand and dirt that blew into his armor, chafing his skin, nor the endless stretches of mountainous nothing he had seen for the past few weeks. Simply, the Emperor of the Romans was no longer the cheerful, laughing young general of old. The greybeards said he reminded them in some ways of Clemente Kosaca—on the battlefield, he was brutally methodical, painstakingly decimating enemy formations, before always leading the coup de grace in person. Even though the Emperor was in his late 40s, looked older, and walked with a limp earned at Neapolis, Thomas would not have things any other way. Neither would Acheron, for that matter.

    That little thing is the source of the Muslim madness? Acheron sneered in Thomas’ mind as he looked out across the plains below the camps of the Roman army.

    Indeed, for all the tales the Romans had heard of a city of demons where the vile pits of hell bathed the desert in unholy light, Mecca was decidedly unimpressive. One could hardly describe it a city, even in comparison to Roman Acre. It was more a small town, its unremarkable brick buildings the dusty brown of the Arabian sands, dominated by the whitewashed form of the Masjid al-Haram, its white marble and graceful minarets in contrast to the otherwise sundry look of a desert town. All around its flanks lay an overly impressive wall for such a small town…


    Despite its high and revered status, Mecca in the medieval period was little more than a large town.


    Sandstone, brick… still burnable, Acheron pronounced happily. Oh, if your grandfather could see you now! Standing at the gates of Mecca, readying to burn the city…

    He’d say you don’t know enough about the city defenses yet, Memnon complained. You need accurate and complete information before you go in.

    Eh, if you’re off a few men, you can fix the math with your sword, Acheron coolly replied.

    “So that is Mecca,” a voice said, and Thomas turned to see his middle son, Gabriel, reining up behind him. The Crown Prince dismounted, and soon was by his father’s side. Theodora crooned that she wondered what was under Gabriel’s armor, but Thomas paid no attention—Acheron and Memnon were saying for more useful things.

    “Indeed it is,” another voice said, and the Emperor glanced at the one person amongst the small troop of strategoi and officers that wasn’t clad in armor. Young, energetic, with a smile as wide as the Bosphorus, Eleutherios Skleros was a rather husky man, who, for someone supposedly raised in Italy, spoke Greek with a decidedly Konstantinopolis dialect. The logothetes represented Bardas’ contribution to the war—the Emperor’s cousin had deferred on sending men, saying it was his job to watch “the perfidious Germans,” but he could send intellect. Eleutherios had held up to the high praise, some even saying the last time they faced someone who thought so logically, cruelly, and methodically, was when they had faced the late Mehtar Lainez.


    Eleutherios Skleros


    “What’s their strength?” Thomas asked testily. On second look, the walls around the city were shoddy at best—someone had built them in a hurry. They had stonework yes, but they weren’t all that high. A ladder could easily scale them…

    “Majesty, Highness,” Eleutherios bowed quickly, “my people have spent the last month amongst the desert tribes. We’ve determined that while many of the city’s organic defenders marched north to Beersheba, the city’s defense, led by one Is’mail abu-Majhid, has been bolstered by fighters from local desert tribes.”

    No discipline, but fierce fighters, Acheron chimed in coldly. Fighting them on the battlements should be fun.

    “Additionally,” Eleutherios gestured towards the decidedly modest walls, “there are many Muslims from around the world that come to Mecca to study.”

    Priests? Intellectuals? What do we have to worry from them? Acheron scoffed.

    “How well could they fight?” Gabriel murmured, kicking the dirt underfoot.

    “No idea how well trained or disciplined they might be,” Eleutherios shrugged, “but they likely will fight with great fervor and devotion.”

    “Maybe we should haul wood across the Red Sea, and build some catapults,” Thomas voiced Acheron’s loud opinion. “Burning tar and pitch would solve all of that.” The Emperor gave an audible growl. “It’d certainly be faster than starving out the bastards, like Donauri’s doing up north.”

    Idiot… Acheron hissed. He’s your friend, he’s trustworthy, but he’s a complete idiot. Why starve them when you could slice them with your sword?

    You’d need lemon juice to clear the stench, either way.

    “Father,” Gabriel started to say, before stopping in mid-sentence. Thomas watched as his second-eldest son, the only one that Acheron even remotely appreciated (He might wear Saracen rags, but by God, he knows how to kill), looked down. Acheron chuckled, wondering if the boy’s Saracen leanings would come out. Memnon guessed they would not. Theodoroa openly muttered she wanted to see what was between Eleutherios’ legs.

    “Father, that’d be…devastating!” Gabriel finally found his voice.

    Ach…

    Weakling fool! Thomas heard his voice snap the same time as Acheron’s in his mind. “Devastating? How is putting our enemies to the torch devastating to us?!” The Emperor turned, and glared at Eleutherios and the other officers. Before he even had a chance to bellow, they were scurrying away—all of them were well aware of what the imperial temper looked like, and none of them wanted any part in it.

    “Weak? Weak?!” Gabriel’s voice ticked up a notch in pitch. Alone amongst all the plumes and lamellar shirts, Gabriel glared at his father.

    Hmm, maybe the boy has some anger in him after all? I think you could kill him if swords were drawn. Shall we find out?

    He’s more useful killing enemies alongside us on the walls. Leave him be.

    “Father, to remind you,” Gabriel put a hand to his temple, sarcasm rippling in his voice, “wasn’t I the one that single-handedly defeated Algiers, conquered northern Persia, planned the sneak attack at Beersheba and defeated the Mongol khan at Rayy?” Gabriel snorted in derision. “Hardly what I’d call weak!”

    He has a backbone! Acheron laughed. Now he is a threat!

    You said that last week, and two weeks before that…

    I don’t care, Gabriel! I’m going to storm those walls! Thomas exploded. “You heard the man! The city is weak! It has a bunch of desert tribesmen and scholars guarding it, for Christ’s sake! It’s open! It can be destroyed! It should be destroyed, and my sword is going to reduce it to ash!



    “Father, you’re out of your mind!” Gabriel snapped back, stepping an inch closer, eyeball to eyeball with Thomas.

    He has courage, Thomas! Memnon muttered with no small amount of pride.

    That’s not courage, that’s insubordination! Acheron screeched, anger palpable. He’s clearly just trying to take your power! Kill him![/color]

    “You’ll destroy the empire!” Gabriel snapped.

    Acheron screamed, and the Emperor only saw red. Instantly, he was only a few inches from his son’s face, his eyes wide. He felt his hands rising up, his fingers curled, ready to snake around Gabriel’s insolent neck. Memnon cried as well, and for a moment, the Emperor hung in the balance, as Gabriel stood proud and defiant, nostrils flaring, daring his father to do anything.

    “You are confined to your quarters, until the city is taken!” Thomas finally hissed. “Guards!” the Emperor snapped. Acheron cackled, while Memnon merely shrugged and began whispering numbers, plans, plots. As Gabriel sullenly was taken away, the Emperor was already bellowing orders for ladders. It would take a week for the army to fully invest the city, but that next day.

    Mecca would be taken by storm.
    Last edited by General_BT; 23-10-2009 at 23:19.
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  11. #3131
    Human Enewald's Avatar
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    No Miracle for the Muslims, and Gabriel has to sit alone guarded in his own camp.

    Is Theodora/Thomas harvesting lustful thoughts about his own son?
    His own flesh?

    Where is the wife of Thomas btw? Didn't she have a calming effect upon Thomas?

    Tea Mecca apart, destroy every stone of it and sell the locals into slavery, let it burn in an storm of fire like Sodoma and Gomorrah, let it be remembered that thus happeneth to the enemies of one true God.
    For 600 years there has been a everlasting struggle between Islam and Christianity. Let it be ended now.

  12. #3132
    Basileus Romaion Nikolai's Avatar
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    I actually doubt Paradox would like that. It's their site, and they haven't been fond of potential trouble in aars before...
    Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. -Isa 41:10

    For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. -John 3:16
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  13. #3133
    Strategos ton Exkoubitores Fulcrumvale's Avatar
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    I assume that Bardas (or an agent of his) was the unidentified man with the Patriarch in the first part. If Thomas II burns Mecca as his father burned Rome, and if the ensuing fallout is every bit as disastrous as Gabriel and every other sane person suggests that it will be, then I can see a serious scenario in which Bardas' coup will be successful. Perhaps this will be how Thomas III will come to power--as a puppet and prisoner after the deaths of his father and brothers.

    I don't think that Thomas the Youngest would even be too displeased at the idea of someone else governing for him while he can concern himself with his architecture. (Of course, he'd have to not know how his family members died, but as Manuel taught us all those years ago, that can be arranged quite easily.)
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  14. #3134
    First Lieutenant Kirsch27's Avatar
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    If he burns the city, and the people rise up, Thomas will just kill the people. Were the Emperor sane, he would probably abdicate, or at least stop his rampage. But, he is not, and he would merely put every rebellious muslim to the sword. His armies must be at least half a million strong, with huge manpower reserves. Even two million rag tag muslim recruits would have difficulties destroying 500,000 well-trained Thematakoi and Tagmata troops.

  15. #3135
    Lt. General von Sachsen's Avatar
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    Que tide of blood and a light blue trianglular flag flying above the Hagia Sophia.
    And the Lord spake, saying, "First shalt thou take out the Holy Pin, then shalt thou count to three, no more, no less. Three shall be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the counting shall be three. Four shalt thou not count, neither count thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the third number, be reached, then lobbest thou thy Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch towards thy foe, who being naughty in my sight, shall snuff it." Amen.

  16. #3136
    Zardishar Calipah's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Enewald View Post
    Tea Mecca apart, destroy every stone of it and sell the locals into slavery, let it burn in an storm of fire like Sodoma and Gomorrah, let it be remembered that thus happeneth to the enemies of one true God.
    For 600 years there has been a everlasting struggle between Islam and Christianity. Let it be ended now.

    Whilst I know you mean it in good spirit and your more or less joking, remember that there are readers who have deep reverance to this site (albeit depicted in a fictional world) and it would be nice if you toned it down a bit.
    "Praise be to God who ordained that he who
    speaks with pride about Al-Andalus may do
    so without fear and as boldly as he likes
    nor meet any person, who may contradict him"


    Al-Shunduqi "Risala fi fadl al-Andalus"

  17. #3137
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    Quote Originally Posted by Calipah View Post
    Whilst I know you mean it in good spirit and your more or less joking, remember that there are readers who have deep reverance to this site (albeit depicted in a fictional world) and it would be nice if you toned it down a bit.
    Well, it is more or less mean as a joke.
    Vae victis.

  18. #3138
    NOP-field present Moderator Qorten's Avatar
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    Ah, well, it'll be destruction then... And a lot of interesting rebellions!


    When I use this color I am speaking as a Moderator.

  19. #3139
    Romanorum Imperator Augustus asd21593's Avatar
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    Bad idea...
    My AAR Library
    -not writing at the moment-

  20. #3140
    Imperator General Ksim3000's Avatar

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    Well BT, I must say, I've been reading the recent updates with utter fascination and amazement at what is happening to Romanion. As I've said to you previously, it is so incredible at how characters will used to praise and boo have become but distant memories, pages behind as the future continues to unfold.

    I think what struck me once again was when you mentioned Thomas I's ransacking of Rome an update back. Thomas I...a man everyone despised, now nothing more than a faint whisper. Its almost as if the characters presently know nothing much about the former emperor albeit Thomas II - the only remaining character to have had any 'personal' contact with the man. Once he is gone, any memory of Thomas I will disappear slowly.

    I'm rambling on, my apologies. I'm just commenting how it feels your words have turned this into a true living, breathing timeline. Its like Chrono Trigger - with different characters living in different time periods, attending their own business whilst the future moves on.

    Anyway, looking forward to the next update as usual. You know, it would be good maybe sometime if a future Chronicler (ala similar to Von Franken) studies the history of former emperors and tries to envision what life must have been like back then. Certainly would be fascinating how that would take place.

    Its funny too but I'm sure a future William Shakespere would make a good play or two out of the Byzantines.

    Keep writing!

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