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Thread: Making Of: The Empire of Brazil

  1. #1
    Unique Username #66563 Planck's Avatar
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    Making Of: The Empire of Brazil



    Brazil: a land of great potential. Nowadays it’s considered one of the possible future economic powers in the world scene. But what if its industrialization began on the XIX Century? What if it was a true… dare I say… “Empire”? Would this whole scenery be possible, or is it just delusions of grandeur from a South American nation?

    In this AAR, Brazil is going to try achieving this Imperial status. But… What the heck is an Empire? That’s the question.

    This is the first AAR I write, so please bear with me if it some things don’t make sense, and please make suggestions if I need to improve something! I’m not playing to ‘win’ (that is, no gamey “first thing travel to Johore and get some gold mines”). Things are going to flow according to the development of the back-story, so it could be that the characters make stupid decisions (or was it me making them? ), and decisions that don’t make any sense at all (such is the human nature sometimes). However, the consequences will also come along accordingly. I’m not a “power-player”, rather a newbie, so my objective is just to have a (hopefully) interesting and fun story. I hope you enjoy it

    INDEX

    - Prologue
    - Chapter 1: The Regency
    - Chapter 2: Rise and Fall... and Rise
    - Chapter 3a: Introductory Addendum
    - Chapter 3b: The New Emperor
    - Chapter 4: The Great War
    - Chapter 5: Brazilian Imperial Ambitions
    Last edited by Planck; 05-11-2010 at 22:21.

  2. #2
    Unique Username #66563 Planck's Avatar
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    Prologue


    Brazil was not a colony of Portugal anymore. That was a fact. Not through a bloody rebellion, not through the loss of many lives, unlike its neighbours - Brazil was now an independent country. Independent… and leaderless.


    Independence or Death!


    Dom Pedro I, who himself unsheathed his sword and famously declared “Independence or Death!” less than a decade before, abdicated after a long political intrigue and left the newly established ‘Empire of Brazil’ in the hands of his young son. Named after his father, Dom Pedro II was 5 years old at the time. [Fun fact: His full name was “Pedro de Alcântara João Carlos Leopoldo Salvador Bibiano Francisco Xavier de Paula Leocádio Miguel Gabriel Rafael Gonzaga” – quite long, if you ask me]


    The young Pedro II of Brazil


    Our journey begins in January 1836, 14 years after the independence, as the young monarch just turned 10 years old. Pedro II was not yet of age, so the daily affairs of the country are delegated to an elected regency.

    In this alternate timeline anything can happen. The future of the Brazil - this large land with enormous potential - is going to be unveiled and leave its mark on the world’s history. If Fate smiles upon this people and this land, the entire world will recognize the true worth of its name:

    The Empire of Brazil
    Last edited by Planck; 18-10-2010 at 16:38.

  3. #3
    Unique Username #66563 Planck's Avatar
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    Chapter I

    Chapter I: The Regency


    In 1836 Brazil was a backwards country. Such was the legacy from its history as a colony for more than 300 years. Agrarian economy, dismal literacy rates (8.7%) and slavery not yet abolished. At least Brazil is known for its best export: coffee… ahh, Brazilian coffee!

    After conducting the census of 1836, it was established that most of the population of Brazil was concentrated in the states of Bahia and Rio de Janeiro. Other important states were the southeastern states of São Paulo, Rio Grande do Sul and Paraná, with more or less similar population compositions.




    The Regency Council (in the form of a triumvirate) saw their freedom as a means to further their personal goals and political agenda. Unfortunately, each faction that was supposed to form this council had different plans. This caused much instability. The political decisions made by the Brazilian government were aimless, as parties struggled to impose their own views in what course the nation should take during the next vital years.

    There were mainly 3 parties at the time: The Liberals, the Conservatives and the Reactionaries. Their intended policies seemed similar, but the fine details of their ideologies caused much discord.




    The Reaction



    In 1836 through a lucky streak, the Partido Caramuru had taken the upper hand in the politics as a ruling party, although a majority of the population was conservative. This was the reactionary faction, who liked to name themselves “The Restorer Party” instead and was in favour of giving the monarch as much power as possible. Their leader, a certain Teófilo dos Reis, had used the troubled times since the abdication of D. Pedro I in 1831 as a reason to spread propaganda. One of his famous speeches heard in the capital, Rio de Janeiro, was:

    “Hear, all Brazilian citizens proud of our fatherland. Liberals and all those with free republican ideas want to destroy and weaken our country, seeking their own mischievous goals. Only the return to the good old days is the solution to our problems, when the firm hand of the Emperor of Brazil once again will direct its people!”


    ... and according to him, the Partido Caramuru would of course be the best representative of the people while D. Pedro II was not of age.


    Teófilo dos Reis


    The newly established party saw fit to raise the taxes of all classes to the maximum, in order to finance the construction of factories in the capital state of Rio de Janeiro [Cement] and São Paulo [Wine]. In the long term, it’s doubtful that this could be considered a wise move.

    Teófilo dos Reis later argued in his memoirs: “It was a hard time, and with hard times come hard measures. The people must understand sometimes they must toil now, to receive benefits that outweigh their previous hardships in the future. For the children and grandchildren.”



    Incentives in form of land grants for the church and salary raises for educators began to be issued by the reactionary government in the region around the capital. Teófilo dos Reis, being a notable former student of the University of Coimbra in Portugal, favoured this policy heavily. New ideas regarding Freedom of Trade were also being developed in the country.



    To enlarge the Brazilian Army, 3 new regiments (two infantry, one artillery) began to be trained in the capital. Question is: What for?

    On war and its demise…

    Only 8 years early after a bitter war against Argentina (the Argentine-Brazilian War) and through intervention by the UK, Brazil unwillingly signed the Treaty of Montevideo, officially releasing Uruguay as an independent state. The treaty had flaws and points open to dispute however, and in the view of the Brazilian regency advisors there was room for twisting (or in their view, reinterpretation) of its legitimacy in the details.

    A local defense pact was made with Venezuela and Ecuador, as a gesture of goodwill to the northern neighbours.

    But the population was restless, mainly the educated upper classes. Incited by the different parties, all of those who were at least pro-military, there were debates as to whether Brazil’s loss of Uruguay could be recovered.



    On December 1836, a book entitled “Um Diário da Fronteira e a Perda do Sul” (A Journal of the Frontier and The Loss of the South) was published in Brazil by a liberal author. It told the story of a young Brazilian officer as he fought the Argentine-Brazilian War and all the hardships of his regiment during the most horrible battles, only to discover they had been betrayed by their own monarchic government, and all the deaths of his comrades were for nothing… as Uruguay was simply given away.

    The spread of this book, mostly incited by liberals who wanted to gain popular support, generated clamors of “revanchism” from even some of the most conservative parts of the upper Brazilian society. Uruguay had a negligible Brazilian population, but it was still part of Brazil – or so they said.

    Although Brazil had a sizeable standing army, risking a premature war just to quiet the rumours could be suicide. A series of nasty things could happen: Argentina could come to Uruguay’s aid. Other South American countries could perceive Brazil as being too aggressive and ally with Uruguay. Worst of all: the UK or some other Great Power could intervene! But on the other hand, ignoring the population could give the liberals a great advantage in the long-term.

    Teófilo dos Reis and his ruling Reactionary party saw this as a threat to their own political superiority, and realized they must do something…

    Tensions Escalate

    Then among the political debate, the most important event of the year occurred. On the 2nd of April 1837, Brazil’s foreign minister Adolfo Alves Tieres in a frenetic speech declared to the general public in a political gathering:

    The Rio da Prata (Rio de la Plata – River Plate) is Brazil’s “natural southern border”


    The news caused public uproar, more overseas than at home. Upon hearing the news, the governments of Argentina and Uruguay condemned this declaration and demanded an official letter of explanation. None came.

    The regency did not affirm it as correct, but did not deny it either. No liberal, conservative or reactionary dared to say something against it.

    Regardless, the relations between Argentina/Uruguay and Brazil steadily decreased throughout the next months.




    There was talk in the diplomatic representations of Brazil in Argentina, that Uruguay would seek an alliance with Argentina. After many months, however, this rumour still had not been proven correct. Maybe Argentina feared the Brazilian army? The only ally of Uruguay was Paraguay.

    Nothing was obvious, but behind doors, it was decided. Brazil would reannex Uruguay… the only thing missing was the right time.

    Mid-1837, the Foreign office sought then to have an alliance with France, seeing them as the most likely to side with Brazil after the British intervention 8 years before. Securing France’s support would most likely dissuade the British from intervening once more, should a conflict arise. The Brazilian armies are ordered to move south. Military spending was increased.



    Liberals were aware of these clear moves. The upper strata were favoring more and more the pro-military ideas. However, the mostly conservative farmers and labourers were still a force to be considered, and the liberals knew that. As a last chance in order to undermine the Reactionaries popularity, a discussion comes up in the state assembly in Rio de Janeiro. Should only the Wealth vote?



    Teófilo dos Reis, being a hard-line reactionary, obviously leaves the discussion to die. The militancy of the poor in the capital rises sharply however… There are rumours of liberals inciting rebels, influencing the poor, lobbying the middle strata and promising them more power.

    The Infamous War of Brazilian Conquest

    And so Teófilo decides this is the right moment to strike, hoping the planned reacquisition of Uruguay will divert the attention of the public. War is declared!



    The reasons were justified in the eyes of the Brazilian people, but not in the eyes of the world. Brazil acquires a high amount of infamy from this declaration, made ultimately only to safeguard a party’s position.

    “Due to illegal terms and irregularities in the Treaty of Montevideo and thus in order to restore the territories Cisplatine Province to the rightful Brazilian ownership, by the grace of God and acted through the interim regency of the Brazilian Imperial House representing the infant Emperor Dom Pedro II, on this day 4th of August 1837, let it be declared a state of war exists between the Empire of Brazil and the established independent government of the State of Uruguay. The Empire of Brazil will not accept any other terms as victory.”


    The same day, Brazilian troops march to reoccupy the Uruguayan provinces. Paraguay comes to help Uruguay in their defensive war. According to military reports (who could have been wrong), Paraguay supposedly possess a sizeable army which would perhaps cause problems to the Brazilians.

    2 Armies were dedicated to deal with Uruguay (to fight the Uruguayan army in Montevideo) and the biggest one, the 1st Army [3 INF, 3 CAV], was directed north to border defense, in case Paraguay decided to attack preemptively.




    The 2nd Army [3 INF, 1 ART] under the command of the extremely talented General Joaquim Marques de Sousa - former pupil of the great teachers in the Parisian Military Academy and Napoleonic Wars enthusiast - defeated the Uruguayan garrison and the remaining survivors were scattered.





    The occupation of Uruguay began.

    Almost 6 months had passed, and no sign of the Paraguayan army. What were they doing there? Hmm. The regency began to get tired of this state of “drôle de guerre” (phoney war) and launched a reconnaissance attack into Paraguayan territory.

    And there it was, the full 9000 Paraguayan standing army, guarding the capital with their lives. When the messenger arrived at the Army command camp in Guarapuava, the generals were celebrating rather enthusiastically the occupation of entire Uruguay, drinking the best liquor available. Many were literally drunk, and upon reading the recon report, they laughed out loud. As a written account from a witness, one of them, the especially inebriated General Francisco Xavier Bras (nicknamed “Perverso Padre Chico” – The perverse priest Chico (??)) remarked:



    Everyone was baffled. No one really understood what “POPs” he was talking about (it was assumed it was nonsense, a side-effect of his drunkenness), but one thing they realized: Brazil could kill 2 birds with one stone, and acquire contested stretches of land along the Paraguayan frontier. And so it succeeded. The war was extended to Paraguay.



    The 1st Army commanded by the “Perverse Priest Chico” alone moved to engage the enemies in Asunción. After a first battle in the capital, the enemy army retreated to the south in order to reorganize. The Brazilian army was split to occupy the territories efficiently, while the other 2 armies from Uruguay began moving north in case anything unexpected happened.

    All went well. No chance had been given for the enemies to regroup after a detachment from the 1st army attacked them in the southern province of Pilar. The Paraguayans were also easily defeated, and on the 6th of July 1838 Paraguay made peace. Two days later, Uruguay was completely annexed by the Brazilians.



    All hail the valiant Brazilian Army! All hair the Emperor and the regency!


    Teófilo dos Reis was pleased. Despite his stern face, his stoic attitude, rarely showing genuine joy… Deep inside he was very pleased.

    Research on Mechanical Production was on its way. The population was happy with the outcome of the war. Argentina was humbled because of its cowardice in leaving Uruguay alone. Common folk were praising him on the streets of Rio de Janeiro, showing how proud they were of having such efficient regency. Songs were composed in honour of Teófilo and Dom Pedro II. 6 years more, and the young monarch would be of age. And he would certainly favour Teófilo, a hero in his own time.

    That, of course… providing nothing bad happened in the mean time…



    Brazil in 1838


    Despite the war, the liberals managed to gain around 3% more seats in the upper house. The reactionaries gained around 4%. 49.52K Male population, mostly Platineans, were gained with the annexation of Uruguay.
    Last edited by Planck; 20-10-2010 at 18:36.

  4. #4
    Argentina Delenda Est Tanzhang (譚張)'s Avatar
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    A perverse Catholic priest?! why did he leave the priesthood and become a General? maybe it was because of the uniforms?...

    Good start so far, i love it when the Reactionaries get in power and start rolling back reforms. Unfortunately it will be a little harder to get Slavery outlawed, consider the liberals in the Upper House a good thing until then.
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    Art - Games - History Alexspeed's Avatar
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    Thank you for taking part in the contest and good luck!
    I linked your thread in the contest list and will follow your AAR

    Also, thank you for the first chapter, looks awesome, i think you will do well
    But please try to aim with the picture count more to 10 than to 20 to better fit
    in the contest guidelines with upcoming chapters, besides that i have no complains
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  6. #6
    Great start . . . whats next industrialization? politics? cant wait

  7. #7
    Unique Username #66563 Planck's Avatar
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    @ Tanzhang (譚張): He was a die-hard fan of the Pope's Swiss Guard when he was a kid. Not having the swiss citizenship, he felt a bit upset when a teenager and decided to try the next possible thing

    @ Alexspeed: Thanks and ok! Sorry about that. I guess I like pictures too much

    @Danking: Glad you like! Keep tuned.

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    The 45 Tommy4ever's Avatar
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    This looks great. Brazil is an interesting choice, your graphics are very good, your update was well written and the little bit with the General was actually pretty funny.

    Well done. Please continue.

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  10. #10
    Serves Uruguay right and to think they ever wanted to leave the empire
    Also a perverted priest turned general

  11. #11
    Unique Username #66563 Planck's Avatar
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    Thanks everyone for the comments I'll be posting a new chapter soon.

  12. #12
    Unique Username #66563 Planck's Avatar
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    Chapter II

    Chapter 2: Rise and Fall… and Rise.


    The next year after the ‘Cisplatinean War’ was rather uneventful. The Liberal Revolution was raging in Europe. But in Brazil, where people did not seem yet to be conscious of their own rights, all seemed quiet. Much help for that was a result from the rights given to the clergy by Teófilo dos Reis and his Reactionaries.

    To paraphrase a political opponent of the time: “They teach and make the masses literate so long as they remain ignorant.”

    After many soldiers were killed during the war, incentives in form of better pay were given, so the Brazilian Army could have new recruits.



    Teófilo felt as if the country was steering itself. Brazil was above all South America. Maybe not as a true regional power yet, but at least as a country to be feared.

    Money Matters

    However this silence was broken on the 19th of December 1838 when a letter was received in Rio de Janeiro and immediately directed to the regency council. It was from a group of Uruguayan capitalists and read in part:

    “We the Platinean entrepreneurs and businessmen from former Uruguay understand the nature of political actions that occurred in the nation which we are now part of. Much pain was brought to both sides from this war. Platineans and Brazilians alike tragically died and even more deplorable (for us) was the total destruction of manufactories which were being built in the city of Montevideo (with our money) and the surrounding infrastructure (also our money). We certainly understand the annexation as something done and over and we do not write protesting against it. But we do not consider rightful and just, that because of this same war, the economic interests of the South are continuously impaired and restrained! Such neglect is surely prejudicial not only to this newly incorporated land, but also to the whole national economic state of affairs of the Brazilian nation.”


    This letter was promptly ignored. Who do these Uruguayans think they are to demand equal rights??

    Such letter would remain unknown to history, if it wasn’t made public by a local Uruguayan underground press. It did not take long for copies of this “letter of demand” to spread north through the biggest towns along the coast and reach the capital and the ears of the common folk. Gossip: Food for nasty Liberals!

    Military Police was sent to investigate its origin and the hidden printing operations were swiftly shut down. But it was too late. On the next meeting in the Brazilian Assembly in Rio de Janeiro, the question was raised:

    How could Uruguay have so many rich entrepreneurs, while in all core Brazilian territories, there were only a handful? Where are the factories and the so expected industrialization?



    Over 95% of the capitalists in Brazil were Platinean. Granted, Brazil did have factories built by the reactionary government. But they were empty, undermanned and barely breaking even.

    And worst of all: the Taxes which were raised to the max 2 years early to supposedly help the industry were still as high as ever, and no clear result had been seen, except that poor and rich had to give money to the state - money which later “disappeared” - as perceived by the people.

    Instead, the government seemed to be happier funneling this money to pay and promote clergy. And even that was not having much effect, as the literacy rate effectively increased only 0.1% in over 2 years. Many priests were using this taxpayer money instead to fill their pockets and then seek adventures of even better-paid state jobs as officers and generals (hmm… General Priests...).



    Capitalists in the new Cisplatinean Province (Uruguay) were ready to invest if only they had the green light from the control-freakish government. Just as everything seemed to be good, the reactionaries under pressure had to give in to demands. Many things were needed: More rich entrepreneurs, a better incentive for craftsmen to work in factories and… more profitable factories!

    Factories, but resources?

    Construction of Glass factories began in Uruguay and Cloth factories in the state of Bahia.


    Constructions starts


    Unfortunately for most factories, the majority of raw materials had to be imported into Brazil, as no sizeable source of industrial Coal could be found in national territory. Brazil produced wood, but there was no technology yet for mass timber production.
    The government grants for the church stopped and instead, Jobs for factory workers were advertised in the towns and villages of the countryside.



    "Are you looking for new challenges in life? An exciting job where everyday is different? A job where you can show your true capabilities and have opportunities for career advancement? Then this job might be for you!"


    The industrialization of Brazil was slowly commencing.



    But even among all the criticism, Teófilo dos Reis did not authorize a lowering of the taxes. His excuse was always the same: the state needs it.

    The Sabinada

    Teófilo dos Reis was once more (albeit grudgingly) trying to appease the population. He had to hold things together until his position as a future advisor of the King was secured.



    But among the political instability, to make matters worse, in August 1839 a slave rebellion happened in the state of Bahia, fostered by a certain “Francisco Sabino”. A group of soldiers and abolitionists barricaded themselves in the city of Salvador, and incited the slaves to revolt. Slaves ran free and pillaged the nearby farms!


    Rebellion – The Return of the Perverse Priest


    The revolt was not strong enough to warrant attention of the whole Brazilian military and was eventually crushed, but it was one more weight to tip the scales in favour of the enemies of the Reactionary cause.

    The Election

    “The people are an ungrateful bunch… Give them a massive military victory one day, and the next day they complain about something stupid.”

    By the end of 1839, the Partido Caramuru had the construction of factories on the way. And the elections were in progress. Teófilo knew that the majority of the population was Conservative they would vote accordingly. A coalition with the conservatives would be the wisest outcome. The only thing he expected was a chance to continue as the leader of the ruling party for at least the next 4 years.

    However, after the capitalist scandal and the slave revolt, he saw his and his party’s popularity stall. Liberalism was slowly but surely gaining ground, as capitalists inherently became more and more liberal.



    A Great Scandal

    Despite all odds, Teófilo and his reactionaries held onto power, barely. But the final mercy shot, which would change the scenery was once more an economic problem.



    Corruption? Was the problem that bad? While the Reactionaries said it was not a reason to worry, the Conservatives and the Liberals undertook an independent investigation. A reform in the administration was made, to pick out the bad apples.

    Many officials confessed and were arrested or had their political rights annulled. But most importantly, a higher official of the government called “Carlos Costa e Silva” was arrested and a huge underground corruption scheme of tax embezzlement was discovered. The involved culprits, one after the other, were found by the committee and confessed. Ultimately everything led to one very prominent person, one who many held in high regard: The leader of the regency, the famous reactionary and hero of the people - Teófilo dos Reis!

    It was discovered that taxes were being kept high in order for him to artificially divert some of this cash to private accounts and convey it overseas. And absolutely no one suspected of it. After all, he was the hero of the Cisplatinean War!

    Before he could be judged, Teófilo escapes to Portugal. Brazil asks for his extradition, but it is denied. Relations between both countries decrease.


    Portugal does not want to release Teófilo dos Reis, who stays exiled in Lisboa. A great hostility among the two nations with a long-lasting impact begins.


    Chaos ensues. The Conservatives were disgusted by the news and broke all political connections with the Reactionaries. The Reactionaries who were not part of the corruption scheme declared themselves innocent and stood alone, trying to salvage the remaining political power they still had. The liberals sought an alliance with the conservatives, but diverging points of view prevented that from happening. The country was practically in a state of political and administrative anarchy.

    Because the proportion of seats both in the Lower House and in the Upper was roughly evenly divided among the 3 ideologies, there was no consensus.

    No proposed laws could be passed without quarrel in the Upper and Lower Houses. As the days passed, violent acts were committed by and against the opposing parties. It was among this confusion that something had to be done. Who could have the power to stop the fight? Who would have the authority to impose terms to stop the escalation of violence?

    None other than Dom Pedro II.



    The Young Emperor

    But he was young, inexperienced. Was he even aware of the happenings in the country? He seemed to be of a reclusive character, quiet, timid… rarely made public appearances. It was assumed that it was due to his young age, so one did not anticipate he would be of much help until he was old enough to be coronated.

    However, the most unexpected event happened on the 2nd of March 1841. At the age of 15, the young monarch stepped in the Upper House chamber on of his own will during a heated debate, and declared:

    “ALL HEAR! From the jungles of the North to the southern Plains, from the Rio Oiapoque to the Rio da Prata… The Emperor of vast lands, numerous peoples, countless riches. The Emperor of Brazil. This Emperor I would be. Not anymore. For this Emperor I now am.”


    The announcement was stunning and subdued everyone present. Everyone stood still. The chamber suddenly turned silent and a moment of shock ensued. And then… slowly… every person present turned to the conveyor of this strong message, some even kneeled down, and with one voice proclaimed:

    “Hail our Emperor, Dom Pedro de Alcântara!”

    Last edited by Planck; 28-10-2010 at 20:54.

  13. #13

  14. #14
    Argentina Delenda Est Tanzhang (譚張)'s Avatar
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    Great update! When are you planning on abolishing slavery (if ever)?
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  15. #15
    Unique Username #66563 Planck's Avatar
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    @ Tommy4ever: The turbulent regency period was a problem for the economy. Next step is getting more craftsmen and kick those rich coffee and tobacco farmers out of their jobs somehow. Now if that will work, I don't know... even with max taxes they seem to be doing well enough.

    @ Tanzhang (譚張): Abolishing slavery is my next step as political reform. I want some more social mobility and increase in CON, so I've been thinking that Ideological Thought (the tech for plurality increase) would be a good next choice.

  16. #16
    That slave revolt was funny I feel bad for that poor slave who couldnt join in on the fun

  17. #17
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    Great Update, thank you Planck!

    I really enjoyed reading it and your humour and pictures made it a pleasure, keep up the good work
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  18. #18
    Oh its the emperadorcito gonna invade Portugal ? or one of its colonies ? :P

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Danking View Post
    Oh its the emperadorcito gonna invade Portugal ? or one of its colonies ? :P
    No, Catalonia.
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    Really liked this. An interesting mix of humour & role-play.

    I think Dom Pedro should start building ships. South America doesn't seem big enough for him.

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