Game paused - offer Alliance with France - French accept - exit diplomacy start game @ 0.5 - re-enter diplomacy and France are Neutral - but I have a "mail" saying France have broken their Alliance with Britain. Not even one month has passed. - Always fickle the French, but that is "FICKLE".
Reloaded same save game and tried Alliance with France again – same offer - Accepted Alliance – Alliance made and lasted the next 6 months played through quickly.
Same game – with the same test, with Denmark and then Empire, Alliance made and showed in diplomacy lasted 6 months.
Reload same saved game and tried Portuguese - Accepted Alliance - but still showing PACT in diplomacy - went in to diplomacy again and proposed an Alliance with Portugal a second time and they accepted. Still allied 4 years later.
This looks “buggy” – different outcomes with same starting parameters.
Why would you want an Alliance or Pact? None will ever attack unless you attack them first.
Because it makes sure you won't be attacked by the other countries when you decide to kick one back home across the ocean.
And don't be too sure you won't get attacked.
In my current game (hard settings) I was attacked by England because I was a split second earlier in colonizing Kingston.
I managed to defeat them and never went into a full war with them, but since that day they remain hostile to me. Which again makes an alliance or a pact with the other countries useful.
Consider it as some form of security.
ah, have not played hard mode in quite some time. In my current game (normal mode) I am at war with all 4 of the remaining countries. Though I fight all the sea battles. Autoresolve makes war very expensive. Fighting usually makes war a lucrative endeavor.
Hard mode isn't much fun anymore. At least, not in de Pirates Treasure Chest DLC.
You get a "building assignment" every time you manage to get 100K in gold and your prestige with your "advisors" drops the moment you can't fullfill it.
Add to it that all buildings and ships are about 1.25 x more expensive while goods are giving less proffit and it's bloody hard to earn enough money to build a decent fleet.
One of the few ways you have is to pray for pirate ships. Cutters offer 9,6K, Carracks offer 18K.
You're even able to capture some ships from the AI if you play it smart; but you need to be very careful with it. One attack and capturing one ship usually drops your standing to Neutral. Another capture of same country drops your standing to Hostile and a third capture turns it into war. However, when you're lucky and are able to capture a few good filled Carracks you got some breathing space for a while.
The only "luck" you're having are the notorious pirates showing up once in a while. The ships you get as "bounty" can be sold or used, while the reward ships offer better stats as their common counterparts, even if they're upgraded. Giving you the opportunity to sell the "common" ones thus reducing your expenses and earning some extra money.
I don't have the pirates DLC, and have yet to try hard mode. You have to be careful selling ships. If it is a fleet I plan to sell I make sure to turn off the Auto Repair option. Otherwise the cost of repair can easily erase any profit earned by selling. Even fully repaired ships only sell for a fraction of their new price.