A new AAR. What a surprise. Unlike my previous ones this one will not be played with my mod (for obvious reasons) but with Magna Terra. For you who don't know Magna Terra is a mod that greatly expands the map, so that not only may you play with the old countries around the mediterranean but with countries as far east as Wa. Considered one with an Indian country (at a later start, after the Maurya Empire is gone and India is filled with many different countries of varying strength) but in the end decided to start at 474 with Zhao, one of the Warring States in China.
War in the East. The Rise of Zhao
May be Decline and Fall but let us hope not, for the sake of the accuracy of the Title anyway
We begin with an overview of Zhao and the other Warring States, as well as some of our neighbours. Be aware that some provinces will always display red borders, a side effect of the fact that Magna Terra uses many, many more provinces then any other mod. They have no effect but to potentially annoying the player slightly.
Zhao is the grey country (though as I have written the name on the map I doubt anyone failed to figure that out). We are reasonably strong, our Wang, Zhao Huiwen is a capable man ruling from Handan in the southern part of our proud country. One advantage we have over the other states is our cavalry, we have good access to horses and start with a fairly large number of cavalry, the rest of our army is made up of militia. The other states mostly field militia and maybe archers depending on what resources they have access to, though none have iron at start, it can be gained in some nearby provinces meaning heavy infantry will eventually get fielded.
Qin is probably the strongest state at this time though Chu are also quite powerful. Qi may be smaller but can field large armies as well and are maybe as powerful as we are. Wei and Han comes next in power. Yan, the last of the seven major states have as can be seen a fairly secure position. Lu and Zou are weak minors unlikely to make it far without the aid of a stronger power (in other words, for them to prosper they would need my protection as the ai is unlikely to help them).
The other countries are not that interesting at the moment, though we can note that the Xiongnu have a border with us, they are a powerful bunch of savage barbarians and able to cause trouble.
First I try to find allies, it can be unhealthy to end up in a war against all of the other states. Qi refuses but Wei agrees. As Qi invades Lu I decide to offer an alliance with Lu in the hope that they can ask me to fight Qi before Lu is overrun. My plan is a success and my army marches into Qi. I get a bit worried when Qi manages to get Qin to join their side. And is even more worried by a declaration of war by the Xiongnu. I ask Chu for an alliance which is agreed so I ask them to join us in our war, but not before they ask us to join them in their ongoin war against Han (that have conquered Zou) and Minyue. Qi decides to end the war and cedes Guangyang. Lu is saved and a province is gained.
Unfortunately we are still at war with Qin, who we could defeat if could focus on them, but unfortunately the Xiongnu Horde after a long time manages to arrive and we have to face them instead. Two years of devastating war follow but in the end we manage to get by without losses (although our manpower is depleted). Our Chu allies suffer worse though losing territory. The year after that the last wars end and all the Warring States are at peace.
Yan and Qin have strengthened their positions and as both are allied there is some cause for concern. However there are a few years of peace until Yan invades Qi. Qi is unable to find allies while Chu, Wei and me join the war, as well as Lu. As Chu leads the alliance we make a quick strike against Puyang and immediately force Qi to cede it.
Unsurprisingly Qi does not fare well against the superior forces arrayed against it.
We try to see if Qi is interested in an alliance but no such luck. But we are getting stronger and stronger and we must plan our next move. Qin remains our main opponent, and with Yan as their allies we must be very cautious. In the end here is the state of the world at the end of this first update.