Chapter 12: Making Money Without Resorting to Indulgences
No standing ovations for the brilliant victory over the French? Oh well... I'll need to find more difficult enemies for today's update...
As mentioned in the status update, our income is good, but not overwhelming. Lucky for us, our universities have improved our government technology for us: we have reached level 12, one of the most important techlevels, income-wise. We can now build constables!
For the cheap investment of 50 ducats (base costs), this wonderful building increases the direct tax income by 50%. I have the feeling that it is very worthwhile to mint money for these little fellows. A 50% increase in tax revenue also means a 50% increase in the yearly (inflation-free) census tax. Once you have constables in all your provinces, you'll get a noticeable increase in income, just try it out! It's well worth the 2% revolt risk, the only downside of the constable.
Now, more income. The constables will increase our yearly income, let's see if we can increase our monthly income as well. Trade is still out of the question, given our badboy rating. Gold! Our advisors tell us, the New World is full of gold! We set our Papal Eye on central America, containing the fabled Aztec gold mines...
So, we declare war on the Aztecs. First, some preparations. Use a conquistador to explore every single province you can reach -- this way the war will be easier, as you don't have to do this while actually attacking those pagans. Move a few armies into position. I used a large cavalry army to attack the Aztecs from the North, 2 small infantry armies to keep the gains (the routed Aztec armies will move everywhere and regain their territory). I also landed two smaller cavalry armies on the East coast. The AI tends to perform poorly against simultaneous two-front attacks. The EU3 AI is not too bad in that respect, as I noticed. Two conquistadors and 2 generals lead our troops, to be able to fight well and explore the remaining terra incognita.
The war is going well, we are driving the combined enemy armies south. Notice our fine general, Aldo Erizzo, his shock 6 rating killed literally thousands of enemies! Another gameplay tip: Always chose "raise taxes even higher" in the Agricultural Revolution event. The manpower increase is only temporary and you can never have enough money! +2 base tax is a godsend, it will also increase your supportable amount of troops!
After some intense fighting, the war is over and we have occupied all of the provinces. Time to annex the pagans! Now, remember this: if the alliance partners you are fighting are more or less of equal power, the one you attacked will be alliance leader. You can't annex him, or that will count as a peace deal with the whole alliance! I made this mistake at first and had to reload an autosave. We annex the two other Indian tribes (as can be seen in the screenshot) and only then the Aztecs.
Our new Central American holdings. Our first order is to build level one forts all over the newly acquired provinces. Rebels spawn so easily and you never know who will attack you. A level 1 fort is the most important province improvement you can build. Also note from the outliner that we are building constables like there is no tomorrow. My usual building queue in new provinces is a level one fort to be on the safe side, then a constable for the increase in taxes and only then a workshop. The Teutonic Order, our allies, arrived a little late on the the battlefield to get a share of the spoils. Tough for them, but I salute the AI that it actually manages overseas invasions to help an alliance partner!
With our overseas adventures continuing, we need to remedy a slight aesthetically unpleasing dent in our border: Sicily. They are our vassals and we thought that diploannexing the country would be the easiest. Unfortunately, given our continuously high badboy rating, this is impossible. We do have a little leeway in reputation, so we cancel the vassalisation of Sicily.
Immediately, every country decided it's a good idea to declare war on Sicily, given that the pope no longer protects the country. Gangbanging AI... well, we decide to join the crew! Sicily is Protestant, so we don't lose stability with the declaration of war.
Sicily is annexed in 1529. Our Italian borders look much nicer now. Take a look at France: the new country is Auvergne. It was force-released by the Mamluks in a peace deal. Bother, we had our eyes set to that particular province. And many other particular French provinces... Also see from the outliner that we are still building all those level one forts in central America and more constables!
There are a few strategically and economically important places you would want to colonise. I'll skip the obvious Sugar islands of the Caribbean and the Brasilian sugar provinces. A previous update already pointed out that the Argentinian provinces have a base tax value of 8. This time we'll have a look at what islands are good for colonising. Grab Fernando Po and St Helena in the Atlantic, they are strategically important. Islands have the advantages that they are next to (mostly) 2 sea provinces. Colonising that island will turn the adjacent sea provinces into home waters -- where you will never suffer naval attrition! This is the main reason why you should colonise these islands. No naval attrition and a base of operations where you can repair ships and stack armies.
Another rich island are the Bourbon islands east of Madagascar. Grab these two islands (and Mahe, the island just north of them, just visible in the screenshot)! They are rich (base tax 5), have either no or few natives with no aggressiveness and produce sugar! Guaranteed money-makers, these islands.
Another strategically important island are the Falklands. Britain went to war over these "worthless" pieces of rock even in the 20th century! Also note from this screenshot that our land technology is about to increase to level 9, giving us another nice morale boost. What to do with that? Our newly acquired gold provinces are generating over 20 ducats a month! To think that we started off with a monthly income of 4 ducats in total...
Well, there is this matter of a truce that is about to expire... And our Creek holdings are considered our cores, more money for us! Take a close look at Portugal. We have stationed troops there (we still have the military access in Portugal from our first exploring days). Just in case Castille honours its alliance with France. Better safe than sorry!
Chapter 13: The Third Papal-French War: The War Arrives in Castille
After our far too early armistice with the French in the Second Papal-French War, Papal generals were itching to invade France once again. The latest training of the troops started to show promising pay-offs:
Initial battles were numerous, but only small enemy forces could be attacked. This, however, allowed the generals to annihilate entire armies, such as in Gascogne.
Our diplomats secure the right of passage through Aragonese territory. This will help us get to Castillian lands quicker. Navarra is the only province in Castille we had access to, so all our troops had to march trough there. No longer! The war in France is going exceedingly well. We are chasing a few loose French armies around northern France, while our troops lay siege to all southern French provinces.
Aragon decided that the time was ripe to attack Castille on their own. Well, after we did all the work destroying the French and Castillian armies... The AI is very good at finding weak opponents! The war is still going well, the rich province of Andalucia just fell, giving us access to the Centre of Trade. France isn't even offering a token resistance.
Soon, French emissaries accepted a peace deal, forcing them to cede a single province and Castille two, including the rich Centre of Trade in Andalucia. Hm, the French were overeager to accept this... the AI seems to be very willing to give up allied territories in a war...
We took Gibraltar for strategical reasons. We can now bottle up the entire Castillian North African armies and now control the entrance to the Mediterranean. Andalucia is a very rich province and has a high support limit. We can station many armies there, just waiting for our next attack and no longer need to rely on our military access in Portugal for this. All in all, a good peace deal. Only later in the game did I realise, that by signing separate peace deals with France and Castille, would I be able to gain more territories. At that time I wasn't confident enough to expect a 99% warscore against a separated France and Castille.
Treasury ducats are invested into the navy, neglected for too long. Soon after, we have learnt the secret of building a new type of big ship: the Caravel.
A massive shipbuilding program is started in Italy. Every shipyard in Italy is ordered to produce the new type of ship.
Aragon gained the province of Madrid from its war with Castille. It seems we have a contestor for the control over the Iberian Peninsula...
I likes it. Reminds me that priest i got for a religion subject teacher i don't really like. I bet if he was ruling the papal states he would be doing something similar to you.
and on a side note. Whenever you fight a bigger opponent, to get more provinces simply take their capital. It was possible from your point and you didnt seem to have done it. And it would have gained you 1-3 more provinces.
You might very well think that ; I couldn't possibly comment
Just caught up reading ; what an interesting AAR you've got here ! The Papal States is definitely a fun country to play considering its importance in the office it is associated with and what not . Although I'm not a big fan of caesaropapism , this has been a fun ride ! I hope you turn back the tide of Protestantism !
kfijatass: None taken! I'm glad you like the aar, and please accept my apologies that it brings up not-so-pleasant school memories...
canonized: Thanks for your support! I am of course honoured to have such a prominent aarland figure reading my aar! Turning back the tide of Protestantism will be difficult, as basically all of Germany is blue, as a future update will show.
I've played the game up to a certain point and don't really know what to do from then onwards. Once this aar catches up, I'll let you, kind readers, decide on the future of the Papal States. It's about 20 or 30 years of game time in the future, so 5-8 updates. Stay tuned!
After the European theatre took all of the pope's attention, we can now focus on the American theatre again. Our best conquistador (shock 5 and manoeuvre 5!) is sent to explore the remaining terra incognita of central America and proceed south. The pope has heard rumors of a large tribe in the Andes, apparently humans that feed on gold!
A side note: I am terrible in finances. By now, the income of the Papal States is so high, that taking a loan shouldn't be necessary. Well, it isn't, if you keep an eye on your budget! Drat. Nevermind, the Papal States will survive the five years of interest payment.
Note that we are colonising our way towards the Incas. If (should) we want to attack them, we'll need a base of operations. Take a look at the outliner: I have started to rename a few divisions, to keep track of the, by now, scattered and numerous armies. There are two cavalry divisions set up in America, just that Great Britain doesn't get any funny ideas...
Fortification Effort. A handy event. Before, I chose "it's too expensive", as this gives you 40 ducats (inflation-free). Now, I always go with "it's of the utmost importance", and let me explain here why. First, you get a level 2 fort for 30 ducats. Given the opportunity costs (the other choice gives you 40 ducats), the cost of a fort is then 70 ducats, still cheaper than the fort itself (100d base cost). Additionally, you get free manpower! Given the Ai aggressiveness and army sizes, my advice for the medium term would be to have level 2 forts in all of your provinces. At the very least in all of your main provinces. This event can speed up the construction (the fort is instant), and you save money and get manpower for free! So, it's always option two for me.
Habemus Papam: Pope Paulus II dies a natural death and is succeeded by Pius III. Again, a wonderful and blessed ruler. His high diplomacy rating will allow us to burn our badboy even quicker.
His "high-spirited" ambitions in all things military prompt him to call the Tenth Crusade: All Christians should attack the Mamluks and free Jerusalem. No-one listens to the ramblings of a pope these days, it seems. Well, Pope Pius III decides to go ahead anyway and declare war on the Mamluks.
As with most of the crusades, Jerusalem was merely a pretext. Our eyes are set on the two provinces of Navarra and Auvergne in France, both states that were wrested from France in a peace treaty with the Mamluks and thus allied to them.
Venice honours our aliiance and attacks the Mamluks, but the Teutonic Order refuses to do so. What are they thinking? And they call themselves an order of knights? Immediately, the pope disbands his Papal Teutonic Guard. We don't want the Papal Swiss Guard events duplicated!
Papal troops in France overrun the two sates of Navarra and Auvergne. First, Auvergne is annexed.
Then, Navarra. The Papal Enclave of Avignon is expanding!
A stroke of luck in the meantime: some (bribed) cartographers painted the province of Algarve in papal minty-greenish-white in one of their almanacs. We'll see if we can turn that into a self-fulfilling prophecy!
Well, this has exactly nothing to do with the ongoing war, so I'll put this in a separate post (this, and the fact that I can only post 10 pictures per update, silly rule). Right after the Teutonic Order dishonoured our alliance, they came groveling back and asked to join our club again. Naturally, we refused. But Brittany also called for help and I thought, well, what can go wrong?
Well, much, apparently. Only four, yes, four days after the pope had signed the alliance treaty, Brittany went and attacked Burgundy. Oh yes, a bloody perfect idea, Brittany! Couldn't you at least ask us what we thought of that?
So, what happened? It was late and I decided to save the game and sleep over it. Next day, I loaded the game and was ready to accept the call to arms, but it was nowhere to be found. These things seem to get lost loading a savegame. Well, Brittany was in a war against Burgundy alone, and I couldn't help out. But I was still allied to them, funny business.
You might very well think that ; I couldn't possibly comment
Sur la pont d'avignon , l'on y danse , l'on y danse ! Hooray for reconnecting Avignon ! As for that saved game thing with Brittany ; try going back to the autosave and seeing if you can't duplicate what occured . I've never tried saving in the middle of an event so I'm not quite sure how that works out anyway .
canonized: The autosave is long gone... But that's worth a try the next time.
The Legend: Thanks -- again
BBBD316: Well, it's easy if your playing a German state, as most of the German lands are Protestant. It's not as easy being the Papal States, as we only have two Protestant provinces: Napoli and Schwyz. But let's see what I can do with regards to your expectations... A few more updates to go!
Chapter 15: The Tenth Crusade at the Gates of Jerusalem
Meanwhile, our armies move towards the main targets. The battle of Cairo is won, Alexandria is besieged. The goal is to fight the Mamluks in their home terrain (centered around Cairo, the capital) and siege provinces there to rack up the warscore. These provinces are richer, and can thus support more troops -- our troops. Then, move towards Jerusalem and siege that province.
Whoops, we spoke too soon and underestimated the tenacity of the Moors... A retreat to Alexandria was need to face the combined Mamluk armies there. We won the battle -- but barely. We can't survive any more counterattacks.
As our infantry armies in combat have low morale after the battle of Alexandria, we decide to upgrade them to new equipment. We recently discovered a new battle formation, called Maurician Infantry. Orders are sent to all infantry soldiers to follow this formation.
A note on this. Upgrading a unit type will set the morale of all of your units of this type to zero. So, it's usually better to wait till peacetime (or a pause in war) to upgrade to a new technology level. Our only army fighting was at near-zero morale anyway to we can upgrade the infantry type without large effects.
Alexandria falls and our armies sweep out to fight the Mamluks. Reinforcements have arrived and our navy has smashed the Mamluk navy to pieces. Even Venice is helping out! I'm very impressed with the Venetian AI capable of amphibious landings and supporting my wars.
Brittany asks for our help in a war against France. Ah, this was the reason we accepted the alliance in the first place! Naturally, we accept. We still get a -1 stability hit, as France shares our Catholic faith. The last fight against France was easy, so we don't expect too much trouble here.
A problem exists, though. Somehow the world community is not pleased with our Crusade and recent expansions. Badbox rating is 32.44, so we cannot afford to be greedy in this war. Aragon is again attacking Castille. Bloody free-riders... Also note that our sieges in France are going well.
The war therefore is quick and decisive. We still have good generals and many troops and cavalry along the French and Castillian borders. We propose a peace treaty for just three provinces, for nicer borders all around. France accepts.
Our badboy rating is over 35 after this peace deal. Dear me, that's uncomfortably high: A new pope with a Diplomacy rating of 5 or less will send us into badboy wars! We need to shift down a gear and wait with our peace offering for the Mamluks. And you, kind reader, will have to wait for the next update to witness this decisive turning-point in Papal history: Check back tomorrow!
Chapter 16: The Tenth Crusade and the Fall of Jerusalem
Papal spies are sent to Gaza to secretly bury a worn-out Papal flag somewhere. This will allow the pope to claim the province as rightfully his, should someone (accidently, of course) stumble upon the flag in the next... oh 2 or three days As you can see, our troops have been successful in driving the Mamluk armies away from the Nile regions.
Aside from the income benefits, having a claim on a land that is overseas from your actual holdings has one strategically very important advantage: you can build troops of your own techgroup. This way, we can build reinforcements locally and do not have to use inferior muslim infantry or cavalry.
Soon after the discovery of the buried flag, the Mamluks sign a peace treaty, ceding Jerusalem, and more provinces on the road to Mekka. This constellation of provinces also has the additional advantage of splitting the Mamluk empire into two parts. And the AI is terrible at managing overseas provinces: additionally to the overseas penalty the majority of all Mamluk provinces will get, the AI somehow cannot manage rebellions and troop movement well in those isolated parts of their empire.
And this was the reason we went into all this trouble:
Let me finish this update with an income overview and a map of the spread of the Reformation in 1540. Our income looks better than before, Burgundy has fallen behind. England/Great Britain is now in second place. Their colonies are finally paying off. The Reformation is still spreading like a wildfire.