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Thread: The Eternal Exile: A Nation Hopping AAR

  1. #1
    Lost in Time Ashantai's Avatar
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    The Eternal Exile: A Narrative Nation Hopping AAR

    The Eternal Exile, A Narrative Country Changing AAR.

    The Outline and Objectives: To create a story stretching from 1399 to 1821 which follows a character changing between countries, observing them, getting involved, and then moving on. By changing countries I can present an interesting contrast in rulers and countries, varying each part of the story to deal with each new nation. Above all, it is the story that is important, so losses in war are both possible and desirable, as are increasing hardships. This is not an attempt to conquer the world, but an attempt to create a rational story with community input.

    INDEX

    LOUIS THE CONQUEROR (8/5/5)
    France - Louis XI Part 1 | France - Louis XI Part 2 | France - Louis XI Part 3

    FELIPE THE MAD (4/3/6)
    Castille - Felipe I Part 1 | Castille - Felipe I Part 2 | Castille - Felipe I Part 3 | Castille - Felipe I Part 4

    Intermission #1 - Castille to The Papal States

    POPE CLEMENS THE PASSIVE (7/7/3)
    The Papal States - Clemens VII Part 1 |The Papal States - Clemens VII Part 2 |The Papal States - Clemens VII Part 3

    Intermission #2 - The Papal States to Byzantium

    IONNES THE UNFORTUNATE (5/5/5)
    Byzantium - Ionnes VIII Part 1

    ZOň THE MARTYR (8/7/6)
    Byzantium - ZoŽ II Part 1 | Byzantium - ZoŽ II Part 2 | Byzantium - ZoŽ II Part 3 | Byzantium - ZoŽ II Part 4 | Byzantium - ZoŽ II Part 5

    Intermission #3 - Byzantium to the Ottomans

    BAYEZID THE TRIUMPHANT (4/5/8)
    Ottomans - Bayezid II Part 1 | Ottomans - Bayezid II Part 2 | Ottomans - Bayezid II Part 3 | Ottomans - Bayezid II Part 4

    Intermission #4 Ottomans to Persia

    ISMA'IL THE PIOUS (5/7/8)
    Persia - Isma'il I Part 1 | Persia - Isma'il I Part 2 | Persia - Isma'il I Part 3 | Persia - Isma'il I Part 4

    Intermission #5 - Persia to Vijayanagar

    RAMA THE GOLDEN (6/8/5)
    Vijayanagar - Rama I Part 1 | Vijayanagar - Rama I Part 2 | Vijayanagar - Rama I Part 3 | Vijayanagar - Rama I Part 4 | Vijayanagar - Rama I Part 5 | Vijayanagar - Rama I Part 6 | Vijayanagar - Rama I Part 7

    Intermission #6 - Vijayanagar to Pegu

    COUNTRY CHECK - 1500

    MAWDAW THE RECKLESS (6/3/8)
    Pegu - Mawdaw I Part 1 | Pegu - Mawdaw I Part 2 | Pegu - Mawdaw I Part 3

    Flashback - The Battle

    Pegu - Mawdaw I Part 4

    Intermission - Pegu to Ming

    TIANSHUN THE TYRANT (8/8/6)
    Ming - Tianshun II Part 1 | Ming - Tianshun II Part 2 | Ming - Tianshun II Part 3 | Ming - Tianshun II Part 4 | Ming - Tianshun II Part 5 | Ming - Tianshun II Part 6 | Ming - Tianshun II Part 7 | Ming - Tianshun II Part 8 | Ming - Tianshun II Part 9

    GAOZHI THE USURPER (3/3/5)
    Ming - Gaozhi I Part 1 | Ming - Gaozhi I Part 2

    HOULONG THE RESTORER (9/9/9!)
    Ming - Houlong I Part 1 | Ming - Houlong I Part 2 | Ming - Houlong I Part 3 | Ming - Houlong I Part 4

    FINALE - END OF PART ONE

    The Credits and Thanking of Readers

    Part 1.5 - What Might Have Been(Unused HTTT Gameplay) Section 1a - Aztec and England | Section 1b England | Section 2a Austria | Section 2b Austria

    PART 2

    (Gameplay rules for DW)

    Section 1 - The Americas
    Chapter 1 - The New World | Chapter 2 - The Conquistador | Chapter 3 - The Revelation | Chapter 4 - The Truth Revealed | Chapter 5 - The Call to Arms | Chapter 6 - The Ruined City | Chapter 7 - The Ambush | Chapter 8 - Breaking Point | Chapter 9 - The Retreat | Chapter 10 - A Paradox Revealed

    Section 2 - Shifting Allegiances
    Chapter 11 - Rivalry | Chapter 12 - Accusations | Chapter 13 - A Paradoxical Rescue | Chapter 14 - Return to France | Chapter 15 - Brigands of the Road | Chapter 16 - The Court of King Francois | A New Dawn for France (Gameplay Starts Here) | Chapter 18 - The Boy Who Would Be King | Chapter 19 - Best Laid Plans

    Section 3 - Duelling Kings
    Chapter 20 - The Glittering Host | Chapter 21 - The Prince's Battle | Chapter 22 - Pavia Avenged | Chapter 23 - The Home Front | Chapter 24 - The Sad Tidings | Chapter 25 - An Important Lesson | Chapter 26 - The Telling Blow | Chapter 27 - In the Nick of Time

    Section 4: Intrigues and Plots

    Chapter 28 - A New Age | Chapter 29 - A New Player | Chapter 30 - The Issue of Issue | Chapter 31 - The Murder Plot | Chapter 32 - Echoes of a Lost Time | Chapter 33 - The Ducal Conspiracy | Chapter 34 - A Question of Faith
    Last edited by Ashantai; 12-04-2011 at 13:17.
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  2. #2
    AARficionado & Storyteller Demi Moderator Eber's Avatar
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    Very interesting idea, I like it. How will you proceed to choose which country you go to after France? Also what happens if you choose a country, load into that country and the leader dies in only a month or so? Would you just move on or maybe stay in the country for a while longer since death came so quickly to the ruler?
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  4. #4
    In Hiding dinofs's Avatar
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  5. #5
    Lost in Time Ashantai's Avatar
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    Good questions Eber!

    I will choose a neighbouring country, with input from readers. Basically, it has to be a nation the character could reasonably get to.

    I will stay with a country at least 5 years, and then until the ruler dies, even if it's in the middle of a war.

    And thanks Boris!

    And Dinofs too! I promise I will get further with this one. LOL. :-P
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  6. #6
    Lost in Time Ashantai's Avatar
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    KING LOUIS XI OF FRANCE PART 1

    (Voice log of Captain Talena Mazari, 27170802.)
    One of the many problems with dealing with supernatural or unusual situations was that you could sometimes end up the creek without a paddle. And this...now happened to me. Iíll start at the beginning, just in case I ever forget...fat chance.
    My unit was called in to investigate a possible disturbance on space station Alpha-132 orbiting Titan. Colonel Hauritz had said a survey team had experienced some weird feedback and energy emissions from the station. I was in charge of the group thatíd go in, find out what was going on, and take action if necessary.
    Problem was that we had no idea what we were getting ourselves into. As soon as we landed we came under fire from mercenaries. It was all a bit of a blur until we got to the central area of the station. There, I found something really odd. Iíd been expecting aliens like last time, or even psionics, but what we got was even worse. Someone had built a bloody massive rift machine for whatever reason.
    Professor Channing got the drop on us, but I got him through the chest. Unfortunately, as I went over to arrest he hit the big red button, or whatever the hell it was, and everything went dark. That's when things got really weird!


    Talena came to eventually, with no idea how much time had passed since she had blacked out until the present. Captain Talena Mazari was a pretty formidable sight in her armour and with her pistol at her side. Her carbine was gone somewhere, as was most of her kit, but as she got up that didnít immediately worry her.
    What was far more worrying was that she appeared to be in a rough stone room at night-time. A cold wind was blowing into her back from an open window, while a fire burned in a hearth at the other end of the chamber. A bed, table and chair were laid out, all of them made of wood, with no hint of synthetic materials anywhere.
    Of course, the most worrying thought of all was that she was glowing. Holding up one hand she took off her glove, and her skin was lit from within by a golden light. That was unusual.

    It was only when he made a gasp of surprise that Talena noticed the man. He was wearing very old fashioned, but good quality robes and clothes, and he had a crown.
    ďAh...hello?Ē Talena said, waving vaguely. She was still a little confused about things, starting with her name upwards. If sheíd been thinking a bit clearer sheíd have realised that the view out the window was not some celestial vista, but a castleís bailey and the fields beyond.
    The man muttered something that sounded like a prayer and made a gasping sound. He slowly toppled forward onto the table, upsetting the water jug so it smashed on the floor.

    Immediately there were shouts, and the door burst open. Talena might not have been thinking clearly, but she had been a soldier for nearly twelve years, and instinct was a wonderful thing. She turned and dived out the window, landed on a thatched roof and dropped down to the ground. A primitive arrow from the room above hit her armour and bounced off. Then, she was out over the wall and into the grass.

    In his room the last Valois King of France, Charles VI, died.

    (Voice log of Captain Talena Mazari, Unknown Date.)
    Where am I? One moment I was in orbit above Titan, the next Iím here. Iím sure this is Earth, but no place Iíve been before. I walked down to the local settlement near where that royal castle was and watched it. Itís seriously ancient tech. Horses, ploughs, no industry, no manufacturing. What the hell happened? The rift generators Iíve dealt with in the past moves objects, but unless this was some sort of time machine...no, those are impossible. Yeah, keep telling yourself that, ĎLena. Luckily, I had my universal translator with me in case we ran into more of those aliens. So at least I can understand what people are saying, though the only person I got near ran away. Looks like wherever I am Iíll have to ditch the uniform. If I have gone back in time it looks like the middle ages. Thirteen hundred years ago...just great. Why couldnít I end up somewhere nice?


    Talena was forced to hide her uniform after she acquired some replacement clothes. To make sure it wasnít found by accident she hid it deep in a cave, where it would later terminally confuse an archaeologist in eighteen hundred yearís time!
    With some replacement clothes stolen from the local town, and with no real direction she headed north. She didnít have any money, but she had one thing that no one else would have for over a thousand years Ė a stealth generator.




    (Voice log of Captain Talena Mazari, 13991016.)
    I should have realised this before, but Iím in France! Never been there before, and this is seriously a long time ago. I was always pretty good at history, but not in depth or anything. Anyway, I found out the year and date from someone. Iím in Paris...Paris! Looks dirty, run down and backward. I guess I am in the Dark Ages. Anyway, I heard that it was the King who died...who I killed...of a heart attack. I seriously hope I didnít just change history. I didnít mean to kill him! Not my fault he keeled over.


    King Charles VI had left no clear heir, and none of his family were either available or suitable for the role. The solution was found in a distant relative, a second cousin of the King from Foix in the south of France. His name was Louis, and his father had been an important figure in two previous reigns. His son was appointed unanimously by the Regency as King Louis XI of France.



    Louis was thirty years old when he was crowned in Notre Dame Cathederal. He brought to the kingship an amazing attention to detail and head for administration. He was a passible soldier, and a charismatic enough man. His mother Isabelle was the Duchess of Foix, and thus had an interest in maintaining the power of the French crown.
    However, almost at once there were problems. A pretender to the crown named Augustin Rieu convinced several thousand of those in the south-east that he was a descendent from the Valois line. King Louis acted with speed.



    (Voice log of Captain Talena Mazari, 13991204.)
    ĎLiving historyí is a phrase I never want to think about ever again. War is hell Iíve always said, but my kind of war is...different. This is so primitive, so brutal. Iíd hitched on a cart following the army down into the south. No one noticed me, and I didnít even need the stealth unit, which was just as well, as I wanted to keep that for emergencies. I got myself a knife and made a living in the camp by chopping wood or carrying gear. I had to get some trousers, but my hairís short anyway, and some loose clothes and a wide hat covers all sins. Weird, I noticed this morning that my hairís not growing. Fingernails are, but only to a point and no further. Itís weird.
    Anyway, I saw the battle against this ĎPretenderí they were talking about. It was brutal. Thereís something...detached about using a gun. I dunno, but hacking people apart face to face...itís weird. The Kingís men won pretty easily in the end. They found the Pretender though and dragged him into a forest and hung him slowly. It was horrible.... Even the Dominionís crackdown after the Tokyo riots werenít this bad. I better get some sleep and try and think of a way to get home...if I even can. Lucky this voice recorder has a fifty year battery. One way or another Iím not going to be here that long!


    Meanwhile in Paris, the King settled into his role. Louis was a man of great passions. For him there was no middle ground, everything was black and white. This made him a decisive leader, but not a good diplomat. Furthermore he had inherited his fatherís temper, and his hatred of Provence in particular. Some ancient feud had occurred, and ever since the Dukes of Foix had clashed with the lords of Provence. This was never more properly demonstrated when the house of Valois came to rule over there from Naples. Now he was King, Louis was determined to extinguish Provenceís power...even though it meant war with the Emperor.

    Of course, being from Foix it was his dearest ambition to reconquer Aquitaine from England. However, without the lands held by Provence he felt that France was not strong enough to fight the English, even with Scottish help.



    Despite being at best a mediocre general, the King was determined to demonstrate his power by leading his army from the front. In this he was aided by the general Jean, who was a cavalryman by inclination and knew better than his liege how wars had to be fought and won.



    (Voice log of Captain Talena Mazari, 14000601.)
    Something weird is going on. I want this to record whatís going on so I can come back to it later. Last night when I was walking back from the tavern I slipped on the mud and cut my hand. I washed it and bandaged it too. When I woke up this morning the cut was not just healed, but gone entirely. There was no trace of it. I know it happened because my bandage was stained in blood. This added to the otherwise oddness Iíd experienced earlier this week. I cut my hair, because a couple of strands kept falling over my ears, but when I woke up the next morning it was back. Could the rift generator have done more than move me in time?
    I saw the new King today, riding a horse dressed in armour. He looked very...martial. No oneís caught on that Iím a woman...I guess if you donít expect to see a woman disguised as a man then you wonít see one! The general state of readiness tells me theyíll be war with Provence soon. Theyíre a little state just across the river from here. I wish I could remember more of my history!


    Three and a half weeks later, on June 26th 1400, the King begun his invasion of Provence. To the north his marshal Jean invaded Maine and Anjou, while the King led 15,000 men into the battle.
    Against France and Scotland was ranged the powers of Milan, Naples and the Bohemian Emperor himself....

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  7. #7
    Historically plausible Dewirix's Avatar
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    A good start. Let's see what a human player makes of the traditional HTTT France vs Provence and the World early war.

    Assuming the average lifespan of a ruler is 15 years you'll get through 29 countries by the end of the game. Do you have an idea of which direction you want to go?

    To avoid things getting samey I'd suggest through the Empire to Russia, down through central Asia to India then Indochina then China proper. That should take you a while.

    Let's hope Talena's translator can keep up!
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  8. #8
    Lost in Time Ashantai's Avatar
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    Good idea! I plan to take in as many varied types as I can!
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  9. #9
    AARficionado & Storyteller Demi Moderator Eber's Avatar
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    Wow...I wasn't expecting our narrator to be from the future! I love it. I was just expecting a traveling bard to tell of the tales in Europe. Great work!
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  10. #10
    Lost in Time Ashantai's Avatar
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    Eber: Yes...that was the other choice, but I wanted one person's perspective throughout history. And of course, I wanted to be unique - there are hundreds of AARs, but not many have a protagonist from the 28th century! I might even end up with a Queen Talena eventually. We'll see!

    KING LOUIS XI OF FRANCE PART 2



    The south-east of France became, in the first decade of the 15th Century, the scene of a half dozen major battles, two sieges, and countless battles. What started as a struggle for Provence became a wider war between France and Scotland on one side, and Bohemia, Naples and Milan on the other. The result was a great French victory...but at a cost of many thousands of lives.

    However, when King Louis led his army into Provence he knew only that he was fighting to settle a grudge, and this may have blinded him to reason. Of course, the Provence army itself, raised by the local duke, was no threat to the vastly larger French force. At the battle near the village of Mallemort, the Provence forces were routed and dispersed, and the struggle to subdue the region begun. However, victory on the battlefield did not necessarily mean that there was no danger.



    In his first battle as King Louis had proven to be excitable and rather reckless. However, the force blocking the way to Aix-au-Provence was so small that it barely mattered. As raiding and sieging parties were sent out, the King and a small force of warriors was travelling back towards camp when a force of Provence and mercenary soldiers ambushed them.



    (Voice log of Captain Talena Mazari, 14000709.)
    This record will be rather...scattered. It all started as I was fetching more bloody firewood. I get reasonable money from one of the Knights, but it’s boring as hell. Anyway, I decided to walk a bit further, and was nearly run off the road by a bolting horse, trailed by several others trying to slow it. I recognised the King himself. I followed, and saw that they were in trouble. Using hooks and ropes a bunch of dirty looking soldiers were pulling the riders off their horses and attacking them. More were coming from behind.
    The King stood with just two others while the others pressed in. I knew I should have just stood back, but...well...I’m a soldier dammit! For the last...God...almost a year...I’ve been hiding and waiting and doing nothing. Now was a chance to show what I could do! I still had my pistol. Ten shots in the clip, and that had to last me. Better make it count.
    So one of the King’s men goes down, and this guy comes behind the king and is about to cut him down, and I fired. No one heard the shot – silenced pistol, but I hit right through the head. Killed him.
    I could hear more horses coming, and reckoned the King was probably going to be rescued. But...I dunno what came over me. I charged forward, gun hidden, knife out. I know how to fight melee, and this was no different. It...well it was a blur really. I know I killed men. I remember picking up an axe and hacking a man down. I reckon I’m gonna see that in my sleep for a long time.
    I sort of woke up once the threat was gone. I’d downed four enemies, and the others had run. More French had arrived, and the King was just looking at me. I thought I was toast for sure...probably some sort of chivalry rule against killing the King’s enemies.
    And he just looked at me. I realised a bit late that one of the merc swords had cut my tunic and...well...yeah. Now I thought I was really dead. I mean, didn’t they kill Joan of Arc for being a woman or something? But no, he just said, standing in front of the others, “Thank you, young man, a great service you have done me. Here, take this surcoat from my fallen page.”
    He could see I was a woman, and he was ignoring it. Why? King or not, I’m not sleeping with him!




    Talena sat rather anxiously in the royal pavilion. She couldn’t help but worry that something bad was going to happen real soon. She knew just enough history to know that women warriors before the 20th century usually boiled down to Amazons and Goddesses – myths in other words.
    The flap was pushed aside, and King Louis entered. He was alone. He nodded his head to her, and she stood and bowed a little awkwardly.
    “Sit, please,” he offered politely.
    Talena subsided gratefully. She tried to pull herself together, and also not to get tongue tied. Her translator could make her understand what he was saying, but it didn’t magically make her able to speak the language. She had been practicing all this time, pretending to be from Norway, which was sufficiently far away that no one questioned her.
    “Thank you, sire.” She’d learned to make her voice deeper, but the problem was she was reverting back to normal, and without a hat he had to see she was a woman.
    “What is your name, my lady?” Louis asked. He raised a hand. “You don’t need to pretend, girl. I know what you are. In all honesty I do not care much who you are. You saved my life, and the life of the King of France is something which is valuable,” he added rather pompously.
    “Talena, sire. And...well...I couldn’t let them kill you. That’d be wrong,” she added virtuously.
    “It would indeed. And where did a woman learn to fight like that? Two of those men you killed were knights, trained from squire.”
    Talena had rather hoped to avoid this question. There wasn’t really a good answer. “My brother taught me,” she said lamely. It was true in a way, but she’d been far better than Rainer.
    Louis nodded, as if he believed her. “Well, you have my thanks. And what reward would you ask from the King of France?”
    She considered for a moment, and finally decided to go for broke. “I want to have something more martial to do then sitting around collecting logs. As a man of course.”
    “You ask a lot, Talena. Even were you a man, it would not be for me to raise you above your station. However, you shall ride with me. If it comes to it one day perhaps you will save my life again, yes?”
    “As you wish, sire.”
    “Good. And for your trouble.” The King produced a golden Franc and tossed it to her.
    As he left Talena wasn’t sure whether she’d done the right thing. After all, now she was dependent on him for support.


    xxx

    Bohemia, under the Emperor, had been keen to show their authority by defending Provence, a part of the Empire, if only just. To this end the Emperor sent large forces through Germany to invade France. It was an unprecedented effort by an Emperor, but by the time they reached French soil the forces were so disorganised and spent that they could be defeated in detail.
    In several battles during 1401 and 1402 the Bohemian forces, far from home, were broken by superior French numbers, especially in the cavalry.



    Reports from northern France were also good. Raiders into the eastern areas were defeated, and Marshal Jean proved a capable and reliable leader, defeating several Bohemian forces.



    (Voice log of Captain Talena Mazari, 14010814.)
    I was in my first medieval battle today. I mean, properly. I’ve seen the others in this campaign, but I watched from the sidelines. In this one I was actually a part. The bloody horse almost threw me off as we pursued them into Burgundian territory. The King of Burgundy came to terms allowing us to do that. Anyway, lots of horse riding, but weirdly, even though I’m sore just after, it’s gone by the next morning. Same with everything else. And then weird stuff happened today.
    The Bohemians were pretty much trapped by the Marshal from the north and the King from the south. It was over pretty quickly. I still find it amazing that both sides stand in the open and shoot each other. No one uses cover!
    Anyway, the battle was pretty much over, and the King rode forward, but as he did, a last few bowmen fired at us. One arrow bounced off the King’s armour, while another cut me across the arm quite badly.
    So, I went back to the tent after the battle, and the Bohemians had surrendered or been killed. I found the wound was gone! It had been throbbing a bit, but that’s to be expected. This is weird shit, and it’s taking less and less time for the injuries to heal. I wonder what’s happening.




    In just over a year three Bohemian armies were destroyed or dispersed, and France was triumphant. In one of these battles the Emperor himself was nearly killed, and died soon after, leaving his infant son to be Emperor. Further problems beset Bohemia though, as Poland and Austria soon fought against them. The threat of Imperial intervention died, and Provence would soon be forced to submit.

    Good news reached Louis on campaign – his wife Isabelle had produced an heir named Charles. He was a strong baby, and after a few minor scares he grew quickly and healthily. Louis’ crown and posterity was assured with his son.




    In 1403, with the King of Naples dead, their lands occupied, and Bohemia virtually out of the war, Provence came to terms. They renounced all rights to Main and Anjou, legally ceding them to the French King. The region of Provence itself remained its own state, but firmly under the power of the French crown. Victory solidified Louis and the de Foix dynasty, and made France a power to watch.


    Bohemia, despite being wracked by strife, sent one final army into battle. This force was engaged and defeated in April 1403.



    The King accepted the surrender of the Bohemian duke in person, and soon the war ended.



    When Naples refused to surrender, a raiding force of 5000 was sent under the Marshal to raid their lands until at last peace reigned.

    (Voice log of Captain Talena Mazari, 14040511.)
    So, I heard there was finally peace today. I’ve not been out of the capital in months. After the battle ended the King came back here, and I followed. I think he’s trying to figure out what to do with me. Wait, no, that sounded bad. I just think he’s unsure. I’ve been hanging around the palace, staying out of sight mostly, but at least I’ve got a nice bed and decent food. It’s a shame fried chicken and chips won’t exist for another five hundred years. All this raw meat and porridge is getting dull. Still, I feel great. I wonder if this is because of the other odd things that have been happening, or something else. I mean, it’s almost been five years, and I’ve not really changed at all. I guess I’ll find out eventually. Might as well stay in with the King and hope for the best.


    With more of France under his control than any King had for generations, Louis turned his attentions now towards Aquitaine....
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  11. #11
    Historically plausible Dewirix's Avatar
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    Good stuff. Let's hope that you don't turn France into too much of a monster before it's time for Talena to move on.
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  12. #12
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    Very good. I agree with Dewirix, don't make the BBB too powerful before you switch countries!
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  13. #13
    Lost in Time Ashantai's Avatar
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    Good point! Of course, it might always be fun to come back eventually as an enemy and defeat the BBB later on!

    Thanks for reading!

    Depending on the country the chapters and sections will be longer or shorter.
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  14. #14
    Lost in Time Ashantai's Avatar
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    OK, I've got an update coming today.

    Is there any suggestions or comments? I've played ahead to 1450, but not written too far ahead, so there's time to implement changes necessary!

    EDIT:

    Also, I'd like views on where to take this as far as style goes. I can either keep going with equal narrative and gameplay, or do updates mainly in gameplay, with just narrative bookends.
    The advantage of the balanced is that the posts will be longer and different from a normal AAR.
    The advantage of a more gameplay one is that it'd be quicker updates.

    Also, is it possible to edit the title of the thread?
    Last edited by Ashantai; 13-09-2010 at 02:06.
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  15. #15
    I approve of this AAR

    I'd recommend making large jumps in terms of distance between countries. Maybe an Italian nation, then someone in Asia Minor, India, South East Asia, Japan or Ming, then swing back through Russia. You might even manage two full rotations!

  16. #16
    Lost in Time Ashantai's Avatar
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    Yup, that's the plan. So far (Up to 1453) I've gone France -> Castile -> Papal States -> Byzantium -> Ottomans -> Persia. Vijay is likely next since they own 75% of India.
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  17. #17
    Field Marshal blsteen's Avatar
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    Interesting, I like the balance of narrative and gameplay
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  18. #18
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    This is very interesting! subbed.

  19. #19
    Lost in Time Ashantai's Avatar
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    King Louis XI Part 3/3

    LOUIS XI OF FRANCE PART 3

    King Louis of France stood tall after only five years in power. The power and wealth of the French state had enabled him to quickly defeat his scattered enemies, and reconquer two vital regions of France for the crown.
    Now however he turned his attention to Aquitaine, the domains of the English King Henry IV (and later V). As a native of Foix, Louis wanted nothing more than to expel the English once and for all.
    He was helped by the fact that the English were engaged in a bitter war alongside their Portuguese allies against Morocco for the possession of Tangiers. Throughout the war the majority of the English navy and army were dispatched to Africa or against Scotland, where the war devastated both sides of the border.



    On the 8th of February 1405 King Louis’ army crossed into Gascoyne. Scotland honoured the auld alliance, but Portugal and Aragon were too overcommitted to help. This freed up French troops from the Toulouse area.



    (Voice log of Captain Talena Mazari, 14050302.)
    It seems so long ago...like a dream. I only have a few things left that remind me of that time long...ahead. Ha...I’m going to start keeping these more to remind me what’s happened. I guess I’m going to die here, centuries from home. What can I do? I don’t suppose anyone from the future ever time travels back here. Maybe I should write a message somewhere it can be found?
    I saw the battle today. The English army was a quarter the French army in size. It didn’t take long. For once the King didn’t charge in. I guess that’s a good thing. He’s been nicer to me recently. I wonder what he wants from me. I know he’s still curious. The rest of the court don’t like me, I can tell. They can tell I’m a woman – it’s not that hard – but the King has declared I am under his protection. Great.




    The war went on, but as it turned out there was only one land battle to be fought during the war. The rest of the campaign devolved into a number of sieges, leading to the occupation of Aquitaine and Calais by the end of 1405.
    To the north though, Scotland suffered from invasion and attack, fighting a bloody war against the English. Louis could do little to help his ally because of the English fleet. An attempt to use the distraction of the Moroccan campaign and send a fleet with 5,000 French troops came to grief in St George’s Channel at the hands of an English fleet. All the ships and most of the men were lost, and France lost the chance to aid the Scots.



    The war descended into a stalemate, with the French unable to help their Scottish allies, and unable to force peace on England.
    However, as part of his plan to expand the power of the crown, King Louis fought to centralise the vassal dukes in France under his control. It was in February 1407 that an incident with Avergne brought matters to a head and led to a war during a war.

    (Voice log of Captain Talena Mazari, 14070214.)
    Oh God...that was not a good party. Valentine’s Day, though they don’t know about it. Worst V. Day ever, except that one where Marco stood me up in the rain. So anyway, I got invited to this ball to celebrate something. So I go in a dress, the King asked me to, so I had no choice. The reaction was pretty bad. Suddenly they’re all looking at me and whispering. So I guess they were fine with me pretending to be a man badly so long as I didn’t try to be a woman again. And that was just the start.
    So greasy Duke started trying to pick me up. Oh, he was lovely, right up until I tried to leave and said no. Then he got insistent and tried to grab me. For his sake it was just as well the King turned up, as I’d have kicked his balls out of his mouth if he hadn’t.
    But what happened was astonishing. The King seemed really angry, not at me, but at the Duke of Auvergne. But I think he was playing up the whole thing a bit too. Basically, the King demanded that he abdicate or his lands would be taken by force. Next thing I knew the Duke was being dragged out and the King was calling a council of war. I mean...what the hell? He clearly hates the guy, but why did it have to be me who was the cause? Ah well.


    xxx

    Talena set down her recorder on the table thoughtfully. She’d stopped using it every day, all the better to preserve the batteries. She’d noticed that her translator was running low on power too. Almost eight years since she’d...travelled...back in time. Or maybe it was sideways? She wasn’t a medieval historian, but she was pretty sure that the Hundred Years War had gone on for...well, century. Was she changing history, or was this an alternate version?
    There was a knock at the door, and Talena quickly stowed the recorder out of sight before calling for the visitor to enter.
    It was the King himself. He dismissed his two guards and ordered them to wait outside. He walked over to her and smiled a little.
    “Talena, thank you for coming to the ball. My wife is ill, so I thought you should go.”
    Left in an awkward position, Talena changed subjects. “I hope I didn’t cause trouble with that Duke. He did-“
    “You don’t have to worry about Duke Albert now. I have sent riders to our forces to occupy and annex the Duke’s lands.”
    Talena didn’t really know what to say. “I suppose you had this planned,” she said lamely.
    “His grandfather betrayed my father. I have never forgotten. But you...you looked beautiful in that dress.”
    “Really? I’ve never really worn them much,” Talena replied, flattered despite herself.
    “And all these years since that day in the glade, I have never asked you more about yourself. Where do you come from? What place has women fight like you – you know war. You do not flinch under fire and you are braver than many men-at-arms who answer my call.”
    There was really no way around it. In this cold room facing this elegant King she’d have to say something. There was no possibility of a flat refusal. She amused and intrigued him, but if she stopped then there would be trouble.
    “Well, sire, I come from a place far away from here. Very different from here.” She didn’t know what to say. She settled on the truth. “I come from the future,” she admitted.
    Oddly it didn’t seem to worry the King much. Presumably he was a good Christian who believed in heaven, angels and saints. He did seem slightly disappointed though.
    “You were not sent by God?” he asked. “While you have been with me the victories have never stopped. You saved my life, and France is now the strongest of all God’s nations.”
    “Perhaps I was, sire...but if so His will has not been made clear to me,” Talena said meekly. It was a good line.
    “God’s will is not always revealed to us. But, you must have come here for a purpose...and that purpose is in part to aid France.”
    Talena didn’t argue. She’d never been especially religious, but there had to be some reason why she was here.
    “Thank you, sire.”
    Louis smiled. “I shall leave you, Lady Talena. Tomorrow we ride to Duke Albert’s defeat!”

    xxx





    Victory followed victory, and Avergne was annexed in 1407, the lands returned to the French crown and the Duke and his family exiled. A year later England, beset by economic and financial problems, and with the inconclusive war with Scotland still happening, concluded peace. Under the terms Aquitaine, but not Calais, was returned to the crown’s control. It was a staggering triumph, only bolstered a year later when the Duke of Orleans died and his lands passed to the French King. By Autumn 1409 France was triumphant and controlled thirty thousand soldiers under arms. It was in this light that a rebellion begun in Bayonne....



    (Voice log of Captain Talena Mazari, 14091123.)
    I hope to God that this is the last time I have to see such an uneven battle. The Basque people in this area of France had enjoyed concessions under English rule, but now they had French power reimposed. They rebelled and drove out the King’s men. The King came with fifteen thousand soldiers, and I was at his side. They tried to fight, but with pitchforks and blunt axes they were no match. In an hour it was over. They were scattered to the wind before the charge. It was terrible.
    And I just remembered...how could I forget...that it has been over ten years since I cam here. Everything is so...it’s like a dream. The future with all the people, the machines, the stars...and I have only a few things, like this, to cling onto it. To know I am not delusional. I’m forty, and yet nothing has changed. Will this go on forever? How long can I keep on like this without going crazy? I guess I’m halfway there already, talking to a recorder....




    With the rebels defeated and peace imposed Louis now looked on Burgundy, who held French territory claimed since the 12th century. Burgundy, as well as having the support of the Bohemian Emperor, had also been expanding their territory throughout the Dutch lands. Any war with them would be hard and brutal. The King requested maps and extra information on Burgundy, and moved his armies into camp positions near the border. His own army was headed for Toulouse to train when the King stopped to make his final plans. However, at the age of just forty, King Louis XI, named the ‘Conqueror’ or the ‘Unifier’, died. He had contracted a lung condition on his last campaign, and though it improved it never recovered, and after a short illness he died, leaving his infant son in the hands of a regent council. The plans to invade Burgundy were shelved.
    In just eleven years he had accomplished great things, with the result that his family would be the dominant family in French politics for decades to come.




    (Voice log of Captain Talena Mazari, 14100723.)
    The King is dead. I don’t know...I’ve seen lots of people die, but this hit me somehow. I just stood there as he got sick, and there wasn’t a damn thing I could do! I have no medicine with me, no pills. He was the same age as me and then...dead. But I’m still alive...just. The Council didn’t take a shine to me, bastards. They accused me of witchcraft, even regicide. I had to run to escape getting arrested. They’re just sore that I’m a woman who doesn’t just sit around in a dress all day and arrange flowers.
    I’ve got to get out of France...Spain is close, and I can get over the mountains easily enough. I liked France...I hope to come back some day....


    (As a random note this game has some odd papal controllers. This is Tyrone, but also Brunswick, Tuscany and Bremen have had it at times!)


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  20. #20
    Field Marshal blsteen's Avatar
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    Modern Caligula...
    That's not exactly what you want to see on a business card
    I was Sir blsteen, Knight of the Eastern West... in :One Last HurRAAh: A Milanese Empire Interactive AAR:

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