I've been mostly away from EUIII for a while, partly for lack of time and partly because I was frankly a bit burned out on IN 3.1. Every game in Europe seemed to turn into me versus France, every game in East Asia turned into me versus Ming and most games in the middle turned into me versus Timurids. When you've fought the same superpower two or three times it can start to get a bit old. But the final appearance of 3.2 and the promise of HttT tempted me back. I played a few games in 3.2 and got the idea of writing a (fairly) quick AAR to pass the time while waiting for HttT (and the patch, because let's face it, Paradox's record with their v.0 versions is less than outstanding).
<An elephant enters stage left, to remind the author to stop meandering and get to the point>
But which country? I don't want to fight France, so not Europe. I don't want to fight Ming, so not East Asia. That leaves the Muslim world or India, and I couldn't think of a suitable country in the Middle East (they're all really small and difficult, or too big to be a challenge once you've got out of Tribal). India, on the other hand... I've always liked playing Indian countries, and the set up in India, with the Hindu/Muslim split and lots of medium-sized countries, means plenty of action from the start and the chance for almost any country to do well. And there haven't been too many Indian AARs. India it was, then – but which country and what objective. Indian games, in my experience tend to peter out when you unify the subcontinent and all that's left is a long slow grind against the superpowers to the left and right of you.
<The elephant re-enters, carrying a banner saying “We Apologise For the Delay”>
So I was looking through India, trying to pick a country. Vijayanagar – done that, Deccan – someone's done that, Delhi – too easy, Khandesh – too hard, Rajputana – too random (it all depends if the Timurids break nicely, or stay together and stomp you), Bihar – a possibility, Orissa – could be, Gondwana – cool flag. What do I know about Gondwana?
Pretty much nothing, as it turns out, apart from it being a smallish Hindu state that usually dies quickly and having a really cool flag that several people use as a forum avatar. I'd never played it, and no-one seems to have done a Gondwana AAR. That omission needed fixing, but what could I try to do with Gondwana? And then a bumper sticker hit me.
(For those of you not in on the joke, Gondwanaland is – or rather was – the Mesozoic-era supercontinent including (left-to-right) South America, Africa, Arabia, Indian, Antarctica and Australia.)
I have a mission! Re-unite Gondwanaland with Gondwana!
And now the boring pseudo-legal disclaimers <Elephant looks depressed>
Since including Antarctica guarantees failure (like I need a guarantee), I will count it as a success if I control merely South America, Africa, Arabia, India and Australia (I will also count it a minor miracle, but that's another post).
Game will be 3.2 final, Normal difficulty and standard settings.
AAR style will be mostly gameplay with random attempts at humour.
I will update at least once a week, hopefully more often.
I promise not to quit on the AAR, unless it's met with complete indifference. I make no promises not to get crushed in ten or twenty years, in which case you can all have a good laugh.
Please don't expect wild expansion too soon. After all, before I even reach the sea, I must first turn a weak Indian minor in a stronger Indian ... minor.
Onward Elephants! To Battle! <Elephant wakes up and tries to look optimistic>
QUick P.S: First post is hopefully tomorrow. Screenies may be delayed as the ancient webhost I've been using since 2003 has developed ... issues ... that its new owners seem in no hurry to fix. Or I may resort to Photobucket.