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Thread: Gentlemen in Germany - a Brunswick AAR

  1. #321
    Quote Originally Posted by blsteen View Post
    A weakened Bohemia and a ravanged France. What could be better?
    The Golden Horde not so close to your borders.

    Now you just have to get a core on Lithuania and annex and, next war with Bohemia, you can force release Lithuania.

    Never count out France. They may have extensive colonial territories, which once cored, could spew out troops and ships to restore cosmopolitan France. The only way to be sure France and Austria stay dead is to ram a stake through their heart.

  2. #322
    Historically plausible Dewirix's Avatar
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    Transylvania wrested away from Bohemia and rebels wandering around its territory to boot. Your east flank is looking much more secure.

    Funny to see Styria as a larger state than Austria.
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  3. #323
    Field Marshal Malurous's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blsteen View Post
    A weakened Bohemia and a ravanged France. What could be better?
    Hmm... How about a boundary dispute on Franken for the final German core? I think that would be better. (Note: this may look like foreshadowing for the update, but isn't. )

    Quote Originally Posted by Chief Ragusa View Post
    The Golden Horde not so close to your borders.
    Ah, Chief, good to see you! It's been a while, hasn't it?

    There are fortunately still a few provinces between the Horde and me here, which is good as they have pretty good army numbers. I try not to put too many spoilers in (I'm playing a lot ahead by now) but the AI tries to give PrawnStar a run for his money in the "GH on a rampage while staying tribal" category before it's all said and done.

    Now you just have to get a core on Lithuania and annex and, next war with Bohemia, you can force release Lithuania.
    A good option if I can get there.

    Never count out France. They may have extensive colonial territories, which once cored, could spew out troops and ships to restore cosmopolitan France. The only way to be sure France and Austria stay dead is to ram a stake through their heart.
    True. I'd give that mess of a nation zero chance to get back on its feet, but it's France. It just happens so often with them: it looks like they're down and out, but suddenly there they are sitting in their heartland and fielding massive armies.

    This game's France didn't really get started on colonizing before crashing down however. Only a few North American colonies, and they don't really have the tools to expand right now, so the other usual suspects should grab most of the available land.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dewirix View Post
    Transylvania wrested away from Bohemia and rebels wandering around its territory to boot. Your east flank is looking much more secure.

    Funny to see Styria as a larger state than Austria.
    Yeah, Austria is busy fighting Styria repeatedly without taking anything, so they're stuck at their current size. Being HRE during France's behemoth years really took a toll on Austria.

    It's good to be able to weaken Bohemia more than one province here, another there for once.
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  4. #324
    Field Marshal Malurous's Avatar
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    1552-1556: Divided Loyalties


    The years immediately following the war for Ösel were relatively quiet. Some provinces returning to the Catholic faith was the only news of note until the summer of 1554.

    That's when the British truce ended. Given the opportunity, Rudolf August I was quick to push his Imperial agenda again.

    The British side was the same as in the previous war except for Flanders, which dishonored their alliance this time around.



    British military presence in the Low Countries was once again relatively weak. General Hehn tore through the small British army in Zeeland with ease, while the somewhat harder job of handling Utrecht was decently taken care of by newly promoted Anton Ulrich Ickelrath.

    But it was his cousin Christian that was tasked with the most difficult battle: driving British king George II out of Brabant. George was known as a bright military mind, but C. Ickelrath compensated by bringing a very large force to the battle.



    By the start of 1555, the situation was familiar. All of Utrecht as well as Great Britain's local holdings were occupied by Brunswick, and all British resistance was based on landing forces that weren't large enough to cause serious trouble.



    Even the British navy seemed vulnerable as Brunswick's fleet sank four warships. Sadly, the confidence this created proved to be unfounded as the fleet was later soundly thrashed by a numerically inferior British flotilla. The navy would stay in harbor for the rest of the conflict.



    In a familiar move, Brunswicker forces started advancing towards the British land in northwestern France to force the Brits to the negotiating table. This was interrupted by a shocking message: the Pope had attacked Milan, a member state of the Empire!



    The court was called in for a crisis meeting. The nation had held Pope in the highest authority and worked for, and sometimes with, His Holiness for most of its history, so fighting the Papal State seemed out of the question. Milan, meanwhile, wasn't necessarily an enemy but definitely a rival, and one that had treated Brunswick poorly in the past. Still, the duties of the Holy Roman Emperor could not be neglected, and the Pope was the aggressor here. With a heavy heart, Rudolf August ended up answering Milan's call to arms.

    In a rare diplomatic blunder, the King's explanations for raising his hand against the Pope weren't convincing - probably due to the fact that he didn't fully believe in the virtue of such a fight himself.



    On the bright side, his position as Emperor allowed Rudolf August to take control of any negotiations, and after only a few months of war (in which Milan was giving the Papal troops a beating), peace was reached before too many men or feelings were hurt. The concessions were limited to the Pope promising he wouldn't do it again.

    While the court's attention was turned towards Rome, first because of the war and later to mend relations after it, the generals on the field were advancing. Great Britain's holdings in Brittany and Normandy were occupied by Brunswick, while C. Ickelrath's army had beaten Armagnac's forces, gaining freedom to take over their homeland in July. By September, Armagnac's provinces were also occupied.



    Several more landing forces were defeated in British Brittany, but finally in late November the British, having lost control of all of their mainland possessions, were willing to budge. Zeeland was recovered for the Empire, but this time, that wasn't all.



    In addition to the liberated Dutch province, Scotland, Northumberland and Cornwall were granted their freedom on Great Britain's home island. Rudolf August believed that weakening the British homeland, which Brunswick's troops couldn't reach, might be instrumental in keeping their power in check on the mainland.



    Much like their cousins in Holland, the Dutch people in Zeeland were extremely appreciative of getting released from the British clutches. These people would become valuable members of Brunswicker society.



    The Czechs in Niederlausitz, however, were less happy. The local German people had been so unhappy under Bohemia's endless oppression that Brunswick had had to step in, but the current situation was, in turn, unpleasant for the Czechs. While working with them to correct any perceived faults in their treatment was costly, anything less would have led to unnecessary bloodshed.



    In December, it was time for another Austria-Styria conflict. Unlike most of the previous ones, this one included a relatively powerful opponent: the Palatinate.

    However, the Protestant Defender of the Faith was less of a threat than their decent military numbers and rich lands would have suggested. Weak enemy leadership meant victories for the likes of Opp and Hehn, even in such battles where the Palatinate were able to field more men.



    As such, the generals were again allowed to take care of the conflict without much court intervention. With his focus in the homeland, Rudolf August oversaw an ambitious canal project on the Spree river in Berlin, and later looked into his naval experts' plans for a new strong and stable battleship: the galleon. The ongoing war only caught the King's attention when informed of the death of Christian Ickelrath. The general had perished on the streets of Paris while leading a successful attack on the former French capital.

    The war ended in June, and the peacetime gave Philipp Magnus Opp, the court's long-time Army Reformer, an opportunity he'd been waiting for. Brunswick's cavalry would be revolutionized: the traditional knights were to be phased out, and from now on the mounted forces, too, would be equipped with firearms.

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  5. #325
    Colonel Memento Mori's Avatar
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    Ah, Caracole Cavalry... each time I acquire it before my neighbours, I tend to go on a rampage. Sad that you are too nice for that

    So, two more English-held Empire's provinces left, including a COT which the islanders probably won't give without a fight. Do you think that the Scots will survive, making the provinces worth more on the negotiation table?

  6. #326
    You've made very good use of Imperial Ban. Are there any foreign-held HRE provinces left at this point?

  7. #327
    People's Commissar of the Navy Demi Moderator Avindian's Avatar
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    Are you pushing for any Reforms?
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  8. #328
    You said you wanted to go republican but you wouldn't get to use the Imperial Ban CB anymore if you did. As it is you can eat half the Low Countries...slowly.

    Or will you just wait until that's done before trying for a republic?

    France is still a perma-war mess, I see.

  9. #329
    Historically plausible Dewirix's Avatar
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    Fighting the Pope must make for some interesting moments at confession. It must have been a difficult decision to make, choosing between backing Milan and supporting the Pope in attacking the Empire you're head of. I think you made the right move, but it'll take more than a few Hail Mary's to get back in the Vatican's good books.
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  10. #330
    What about reforms??
    Nothing to say.

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  11. #331
    Field Marshal blsteen's Avatar
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    The Empire seems to be doing well without them so far
    but we'll see what the gentlemen decide.
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  12. #332
    The Guardian of Divergences Athalcor's Avatar
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    Wow, that's a bit of a fail for Britain to lose Scotland etc...
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  13. #333
    Why exactly is a part of Ireland now scottish territory? Can't imagine how they'd have gotten a core on that.
    Anyway, good progress as usual!

  14. #334
    Field Marshal Malurous's Avatar
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    Wow, really happy to see so many comments already in the relatively short time since the update. It's always good to know that the effort is appreciated. I'm out now and won't be back home until either Monday or Wednesday, but I suppose I'll have to make posting an update the first order of business whenever I'm home.

    Quote Originally Posted by Memento Mori View Post
    Ah, Caracole Cavalry... each time I acquire it before my neighbours, I tend to go on a rampage. Sad that you are too nice for that
    Sad indeed, as that's also what I tend to do. This and the first tactics improvement a couple of decades earlier tend to make the mid 16th century one of the prime times to steamroll.

    So, two more English-held Empire's provinces left, including a COT which the islanders probably won't give without a fight. Do you think that the Scots will survive, making the provinces worth more on the negotiation table?
    Actually only one (Brabant) left I believe. Antwerpen isn't an Imperial province here unfortunately.

    I don't know about the Scots in the long term, but in the short to mid term certainly. They are bound to survive until the inevitable war for Brabant, and that alone makes it worth it - as GB has less and less provinces on the mainland, anything that makes fishing for warscore easier is vital. And those releases were added bonuses anyway: I didn't expect them to suddenly give the full warscore+10 peace deal when I previously had to stabhit them even to get the minimum peace, but I guess their ongoing war with Castille made them a bit desperate for peace.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sybot View Post
    You've made very good use of Imperial Ban. Are there any foreign-held HRE provinces left at this point?
    Let's see... Off the top of my head, there's the one province the British have left, Castille has Istria and the Ottomans have Romagna. I think that's all, and Brabant is the only one that's anywhere near me. However, that's only the current situation. The applicable provinces are always changing as some are lost when HRE countries conquer them and others are born when non-HRE nations conquer or break away.

    And even with my refusal to use underhanded methods (so I won't sponsor patriot rebels seeking to return HRE provinces to a non-HRE nation for instance), I can still try to engineer some more. As a relatively obvious example, in addition to the strategic benefit there might have been a secret motive for using the extra warscore to tear the British homelands apart instead of liberating their vassal Utrecht.

    Of course if I'd really wanted to go hardcore at this, I would have tried to keep France intact and defeat them myself instead. That would have been a goldmine.

    Quote Originally Posted by Avindian View Post
    Are you pushing for any Reforms?
    No. As I'm not planning to form HRE or to vassalize it for that matter, taking reforms would only make the situation worse for me when I'm no longer the Emperor.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fronzel View Post
    You said you wanted to go republican but you wouldn't get to use the Imperial Ban CB anymore if you did. As it is you can eat half the Low Countries...slowly.

    Or will you just wait until that's done before trying for a republic?
    Like described earlier there aren't that many applicable provinces currently. So as I'm in no hurry to go for a republic with my nice 8 DIP King, there's plenty of time for the CB to become mostly spent. And even if I lose the CB, I can still take any such province that turns up in the future if I can get into a war with the owner somehow. Even if that means taking the full infamy hit, I think I could live with having 4 BB instead of 0 once every couple of decades.

    France is still a perma-war mess, I see.
    Yup. But don't count her out yet...

    Quote Originally Posted by Dewirix View Post
    Fighting the Pope must make for some interesting moments at confession. It must have been a difficult decision to make, choosing between backing Milan and supporting the Pope in attacking the Empire you're head of. I think you made the right move, but it'll take more than a few Hail Mary's to get back in the Vatican's good books.
    Yeah, that's pretty much how I see it. Another of those "there's no correct answer" things that are an inherent part of any moral dilemma. If it was a normal alliance I might have dishonored if backing my ally meant fighting the Pope, but leading the HRE could also be seen as a sacred duty that cannot be disregarded. I kept gifting the Papal State for a while afterwards and sent a few Papal envoys (? whatever they're called, the religious decision anyway) to boot for RP reasons.

    It's because of situations like this and the Bavarian mess that I don't ally anyone anymore. I don't want any more "no correct answer" decisions if I can avoid them.

    Quote Originally Posted by FinnishFish View Post
    What about reforms??
    See earlier answer to Avindian.

    Quote Originally Posted by blsteen View Post
    The Empire seems to be doing well without them so far
    but we'll see what the gentlemen decide.
    The gentlemen agree.

    Quote Originally Posted by Athalcor View Post
    Wow, that's a bit of a fail for Britain to lose Scotland etc...
    Indeed. I seem to have caught them in a bad spot.

    Quote Originally Posted by no7892142 View Post
    Why exactly is a part of Ireland now scottish territory? Can't imagine how they'd have gotten a core on that.
    Anyway, good progress as usual!
    Thanks! It's actually Castille, they took that Irish province in an earlier war with the Brits.
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  15. #335
    Lost in Time Ashantai's Avatar
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    Just caught up. Fantastic work! Those damn Brits are troublesome with their ships though.
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  16. #336
    You can still force release Wales and England in future wars with Great Britain. With little or no infamy, there's not a nation you need fear inheriting to trigger bad boy wars.

    Istria and Romagna are a little far away from you. Youu've been careful to keep your main part of the country united. You're still disconnected from the Baltic. With a DIP 8 monarch boundary issues will come. As Emperor you can choose which states to attack with Imperial CBs. There are not that many states left in the HRE - thanks to Bohemia and Brunswick.

    I've usually found releasing Scotland is not a good idea. They seem, at least in my games, to challenge for colonies and incite natives wherever possible. Since you're not going after colonies, they may prove to be a good ally. Strangely, if Scotland survives from game start, it tends to be less aggresssive than GB and not so inclined to colonise anything outside Canada. Their brief histrorical foaray to central america never happens.

    Once you have Brabant, you'll probably get a core on Antwerpen.

    The idea that you'd prefer to fight a full stength France yourself is not one gentlemen ought to entertain. Gentlemen aren't masochists.

  17. #337
    Alien Space Bat PrawnStar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Malurous View Post
    I'm out now and won't be back home until either Monday or Wednesday
    My type of party


    Apparently I need to buy some more gravel.


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  18. #338
    Quote Originally Posted by PrawnStar View Post
    My type of party
    Isn't your idea of a party related to lots of rebels and horses? And gravel?

  19. #339
    Field Marshal Malurous's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ashantai View Post
    Just caught up. Fantastic work! Those damn Brits are troublesome with their ships though.
    Thanks! Indeed. And since we all know that, barring huge tech disparity, pretty much the only way to beat large navies in EU III is to build an even larger one, well... one Press Gangs NI coming right up!

    Quote Originally Posted by Chief Ragusa View Post
    You can still force release Wales and England in future wars with Great Britain.
    Yeah, didn't have enough warscore for even Wales there... I'll be looking to correct that if the British are willing to give warscore+10 in any future peace deal, but that might require outside help (like the Castilian war here).

    Istria and Romagna are a little far away from you. Youu've been careful to keep your main part of the country united. You're still disconnected from the Baltic. With a DIP 8 monarch boundary issues will come. As Emperor you can choose which states to attack with Imperial CBs. There are not that many states left in the HRE - thanks to Bohemia and Brunswick.
    My "off the top of my head" list was actually wrong re: Romagna, the Ottomans do indeed have it but it's not a HRE province. And yeah, Istria is a bit remote especially since it's just one province.

    I'm certainly hoping for cores to connect the Baltic provinces, but unfortunately it's quite a distance.

    The decrease in the number of HRE states is alarming - when the Empire gets small enough, I lose an important boundary dispute modifier. Releasing HRE minors will have to become a priority in the near future.

    I've usually found releasing Scotland is not a good idea. They seem, at least in my games, to challenge for colonies and incite natives wherever possible. Since you're not going after colonies, they may prove to be a good ally. Strangely, if Scotland survives from game start, it tends to be less aggresssive than GB and not so inclined to colonise anything outside Canada. Their brief histrorical foaray to central america never happens.

    Once you have Brabant, you'll probably get a core on Antwerpen.
    That's definitely one core that would be very nice, Antwerpen is as rich as usual.

    It's a good point that Scotland is a better bet here as colonies aren't an issue.

    The idea that you'd prefer to fight a full stength France yourself is not one gentlemen ought to entertain. Gentlemen aren't masochists.
    Yeah, that's why the gentlemen don't prefer it. In a different game - a pure "maximize conquests without taking non-cores" attempt without the RP element - it would have been the way to go.

    Quote Originally Posted by PrawnStar View Post
    My type of party
    Sorry to disappoint, but it was a business trip for the most part.

    Quote Originally Posted by no7892142 View Post
    Isn't your idea of a party related to lots of rebels and horses? And gravel?
    Good call on the gravel.
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  20. #340
    Field Marshal Malurous's Avatar
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    1556-1561: Köln and Westfalen Together Again


    Once again, German people struggling under foreign rule contacted Brunswick for help in June. The Prussians of Samogitia were desperate enough that they even offered a sizeable cash incentive for swift help against their Bohemian masters. This was promised to the Prussian population by Rudolf August I personally.



    War preparations were started, and the money was quickly put to good use in building the new galleons. To alleviate the costs of adding a large amount of ships in a short time, many of the new crewmembers were drafted from civilian vessels.



    In May 1557 everything was ready, but before Brunswick could act on the Bohemians, grave news were heard from the west: Great Britain had annexed their vassal, Utrecht, strengthening their presence in the Low Countries again.



    While reacting to this immediately seemed tempting, the King had his promise to the Prussians to uphold. War was declared on Bohemia, bringing their allies Denmark and Finland to the conflict as well.



    To the surprise of many, the war was incredibly short. Hehn's and Opp's new Caracole cavalry regiments cut through the Bohemian ranks like a hot knife through butter, and a joint effort by Brunswick and Austria led to four occupied enemy provinces, including Prague, in less than a month and a half.

    After such domination, the Bohemians were happy to accept Rudolf August's peace offer, ceding Samogitia while giving Mazovia its freedom.





    The war would be the last one for general Opp, who died in January 1558. Army Reformer Opp had now outlived not only his younger brother Julius, but the young nephews as well.

    Brunswick's rise to prominence had begun with the conquest of Paderborn and its surroundings from Köln in 1408. For a long time, Köln had sought the reunion of the two cities under their banner, but had been forced to relinquish those hopes in an earlier war. However, in his speech during some festivities on the 150th anniversary of the conquest, Rudolf August proclaimed that there should indeed be a reunion, but one under his rule. This was probably more rhetoric than anything, but some circles in Köln turned out to be supportive, likely due in part to the two nations' recently improved relations.



    Unfortunately, Köln's archbishop didn't agree and had to be persuaded by force.



    Köln's tiny 2000 man army couldn't put up proper resistance against general Ickelrath's troops, and Köln was added to the realm in August.



    However, Sweden had been just as effective as they annexed Mazovia, Brunswick's ally after gaining their independence the previous year, on the same day.

    This could not be tolerated. First, Ostpreussen was occupied and the Swedish transport fleet sunk. Then in September, general Hehn showed to the new Swedish king, Gustav II Adolf (!), that he wouldn't be any more forgiving to him than he and his late brother had been to his predecessor.



    By December, Sweden's local army had been driven off and Mazovia occupied. The Swedes were then forced to re-release the tiny nation.



    With the country at peace again, Rudolf August I could concentrate on integrating one of his vassals. In recent wars, the King had been forced to face his relatives from Denmark, and Holstein's troops, while often helpful, had proved unable to stand their ground against the Danes on their own. In April 1560 both sides agreed that direct administration by Brunswick would be the safer alternative.



    The administration had sorted the most pressing issues with Holstein's integration by November, and Rudolf August I was again able to focus on his duties as Emperor. Once again this meant tackling the British, who now had a new ally, Bavaria.



    Two completely separate fronts with opponents of notable strength caused the need for more leadership for the army, especially since Anton Ulrich Ickelrath wasn't very competent. In a potentially confusing move, Brunswick's most skilled existing general Karl Wilhelm Hehn met his match in new promotion Karl Wilhelm Hein. Hein was given command of the Bavarian front while Hehn and Ickelrath took care of the British theater.

    The two more experienced men performed admirably as all of British Low Countries was under Brunswicker occupation by December 17th, less than a month into the war.



    Hein's debut was less convincing as casualties mounted. However, his older colleagues had met no resistance at all, while he had to face a large army led by the Bavarian king and in great defensive position. The battle was indeed bloody, but Hein triumphed in the end.



    Subsequent action went more smoothly for the young general. The bulk of Brunswick's forces were sent after the Bavarian king, while some troops stayed behind in order to take over Bavarian fortifications. With the Low Countries apparently under control, general Ickelrath was transfered to take command of these operations, set to arrive some time in January 1561.

    In retrospect, it might have been risky to leave Hehn as the only able leader facing the main opponent. While certainly a talented man, he was long in the tooth - he had served as a general for an awe-inspiring 30 years - and his age, which had never caught up with him in his life, finally did so in his death. He passed away in his sleep on February 3rd, shocking those who had spent the seemingly ageless man's last days with him.

    This caused a mad scramble for someone to lead the forces fighting the British; with the main army pushing towards Normandy and none of the obvious candidates anywhere near the border let alone the army's current location, a promotion from the ranks was inevitable. Of the available officers, Joachim Eickenroth stood out with his talent, and was indeed a better man for the job than anyone who the ordinary bureaucracy might have come up with.

    By early spring, most of Bavaria was occupied by either Brunswick or Austria. The Bavarians were begging for peace, but Rudolf August simply told the Bavarians to ask their British allies to end the war. Despite their nagging allies and restless subjects, the British wouldn't do such a thing.

    Before a solution could be found, the Emperor got more work: Siena had to be protected against Naples' aggression.



    Siena certainly wasn't a match for Naples, but Milan was fortunately on Brunswick's side again. Like with the Pope earlier, the war was a short one as Naples was eager to accept peace after hammerings from Milan.

    In June, British Brittany and all of Bavaria were controlled by Brunswick's alliance. Rudolf August could now force a peace on the British, recovering the Imperial territory of Brabant.



    Read my Cuzco MEIOU AAR Children of the Sun! (ongoing)
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