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Thread: The Forgotten Ones - A Livonian Order AAR (SRI for DW)

  1. #41
    Major kepler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Memento Mori View Post
    These circuts are an interesting idea. I vaguely remember hearing a similar term used as a sub-division of some country (Austria-Hungary methinks) when studying "the history of administration", but I didn't know they originated in the HRE

    Anyway, how are they calculated if the Empire gains more land via decisions of adding a province in the HRE?
    Mmm, they are regions so they won't change I suppose.
    But maybe unrelated to this there is a mechanic called Demesne which allows the Emperor to give one of his conquests to the Empire instead of keeping it for himself. That province will change hands when the Emperor changes. One of the advantage is that the province has its revolt-risk basically lowered to zero so in some ways it behaves like a core but never becomes one.

    PS yay, 100 posts!

    PPS my latest update is at the bottom of the previous page ;-)
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  2. #42
    The knights must be dying from exhaustion and not from fighting, but from managing the newly built empire. Considering that there were around a 100 knights at the height of the historial Livonian Order's power and they had trouble ruling the thinly populated Livonia, then now there is probably a single desparate knight for every 30 000 angry russians :P

    How's your administrative efficiency?

  3. #43
    Editor-in-Chief AllmyJames's Avatar
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    Well, this makes for an interesting change - the first time I've encountered a Livonia AAR and the first time for the SRI mod (although it looks like MM has integrated some of its ideas). Nice work so far!

    I have a question though - it looks like the penalites for granting integrated vassals autonomy are rather high - especailly the -50% tax rate. Does that modifier really remain for the rest of the game? It hardly seems worth it for the sake of a core...
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  4. #44
    General gabor's Avatar
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    The English in Olonets, the Ottomans in Galicia - there are some oddities in your timeframe.

    Quote Originally Posted by kepler View Post
    I get to Land Tech 11 and I can upgrade my infantry to Galloglaigh Infantry.
    Are they better than pikemen? I seem to always go for pikes.

    Quote Originally Posted by kepler View Post
    Danzig is a sort of (quite wealthy) Free City
    Well, it was semi-independent under Polish rule. Of course I root for it now. If/when it joins the Empire it gets a chance to survive. How is Hansa represented in SRI? Asking because, as part of MMP, it was also Helius's creation, ingenueous and detailed, and my Danzig aar actually revolved around it. Also, your Riga appetite might be curbed by strong Hansa.

    Quote Originally Posted by kepler View Post
    Our generals don't like our Defensive focus but they will have to live with that
    I like it: full defensiveness represents the castles scattered all around LIV, quality the knights being the elite force.

    Quote Originally Posted by kepler View Post
    Muscowy seems to have big problems in the war with Kazan, their armies are losing men to attrition in some Tartar province. The time to strike is close…
    oh, the deviousness!

    Quote Originally Posted by Ar7 View Post
    The knights must be dying from exhaustion and not from fighting, but from managing the newly built empire. Considering that there were around a 100 knights at the height of the historial Livonian Order's power and they had trouble ruling the thinly populated Livonia, then now there is probably a single desparate knight for every 30 000 angry russians :P
    Very true. Same for TO. Actually that was one of the reasons (+ alienation between the knights and their more and more numerous and independently-minded subjects) that weakened TO. That's why kepler at some point, rather sooner than later, might want/need to abandon theocracy.

  5. #45
    There was something Byzantine about your takedown of Muscovy. They'll be be back looking to redeem their lands. Your alliance with Lithuania looks like a life-saver, though the more of Muscovy you take, the less likely they'll be to support you. No doubt your -50% tax for local autonomy will disappear once you form Russia. A theocratic Catholic Russia would be interesting. The Imperial Circles came in a little in advance of OTL, but it's close enough. I'd laugh, if the Reformation started in the Order's lands.

    The Teutonic Knights only took Germans, which didn't endear them to local Catholics.. The Knights Hospitallers were the main recruiters. The Livonian Order was an amalgamation of two Orders -The Brethren of the Sword in Livonia and Knights of the Sword in Estonia, which was a daughter foundation of the Templars. Both tended to recruiit locally, because they couldn't really ccompete with the other military Orders, but couldn't afford to maintain that many knights due to the low tax income and the low population meant there weren't that many suitable recruits in the first place.

    Pagan Finland ought to be a red rag to a bull - in and take and convert.

  6. #46
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    Nice developments. You played your cards really well, but I hope that the Russians, or Poland-Lithuania, will get a good chance against you soon. (It would be too embarrassing for them otherwise.)
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  7. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ar7 View Post
    How's your administrative efficiency?
    I don't have much time to play these days (probably be updating during the weekend), but last time I was still at Competent Gov, probably very close to the lower tier…

    Quote Originally Posted by AllmyJames View Post
    Well, this makes for an interesting change - the first time I've encountered a Livonia AAR and the first time for the SRI mod (although it looks like MM has integrated some of its ideas). Nice work so far!

    I have a question though - it looks like the penalites for granting integrated vassals autonomy are rather high - especailly the -50% tax rate. Does that modifier really remain for the rest of the game? It hardly seems worth it for the sake of a core...
    Thx! According to the latest version notes by Helius, I need to wait 25 years + 25 for each province belonging to the Estates. So it would be 50 years for Pskov and 75 years for Tver. I haven't looked at the decision in the game files, but IIRC will cost me Stability and lower Administrative Efficiency for a while.
    From now on I think I can do without Houses, but the first House (Pskov) was essential to get Russian as an accepted culture and the second one (Tver) was very useful in avoiding revolts while I was battling the Russians. If I were less lucky in the war, a single Rebel stack could have made the difference.

    Quote Originally Posted by gabor View Post
    The English in Olonets, the Ottomans in Galicia - there are some oddities in your timeframe.
    Yes, but I think Ottoman Galicia and a Pagan Finnish Kingdom are by far the strangest things. Olonets is not too bad as a province and England is conducting a policty of expansion in Northern Europe (alliance with Denmark, annexing Prussia). However, the Ottomans releasing Granada (still Muslim) was cool.

    Quote Originally Posted by gabor View Post
    Are they better than pikemen? I seem to always go for pikes.
    You mean men-at-arms? I normally go for the units with more pips in total and in DW there is even a tooltip which suggests you to upgrade IIRC.

    Quote Originally Posted by gabor View Post
    Well, it was semi-independent under Polish rule. Of course I root for it now. If/when it joins the Empire it gets a chance to survive. How is Hansa represented in SRI? Asking because, as part of MMP, it was also Helius's creation, ingenueous and detailed, and my Danzig aar actually revolved around it. Also, your Riga appetite might be curbed by strong Hansa.
    Yeah, I read that AAR (not post by post TBH), it was very good. But I believe the Hansa in SRI is simply another trade league based in Lubeck. I haven't seen specific events fire yet.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ar7 View Post
    The knights must be dying from exhaustion and not from fighting, but from managing the newly built empire. Considering that there were around a 100 knights at the height of the historial Livonian Order's power and they had trouble ruling the thinly populated Livonia, then now there is probably a single desparate knight for every 30 000 angry russians :P
    Quote Originally Posted by gabor View Post
    Very true. Same for TO. Actually that was one of the reasons (+ alienation between the knights and their more and more numerous and independently-minded subjects) that weakened TO. That's why kepler at some point, rather sooner than later, might want/need to abandon theocracy.
    Quote Originally Posted by Chief Ragusa View Post
    The Teutonic Knights only took Germans, which didn't endear them to local Catholics.. The Knights Hospitallers were the main recruiters. The Livonian Order was an amalgamation of two Orders -The Brethren of the Sword in Livonia and Knights of the Sword in Estonia, which was a daughter foundation of the Templars. Both tended to recruiit locally, because they couldn't really ccompete with the other military Orders, but couldn't afford to maintain that many knights due to the low tax income and the low population meant there weren't that many suitable recruits in the first place.
    You're right. If this AAR were more like an history book or I wasn't so lazy about narrative parts, I would take some time to explain the help given by the converted Russian Houses in managing the land. And the true richness of the country will be soon concentrated around Novgorod (or Moskva). Eventually this would lead to the Russians actually becoming the predominant force in the country (either in the form of nobles or middle class), allowing them to replace the Order.
    Because the AAR is so far going well, I think forming Russia is a realistic goal. But I can't do a culture shift in SRI under a Theocracy, so I need to change my government first and that will be possibile only around 1640 I think.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chief Ragusa View Post
    There was something Byzantine about your takedown of Muscovy. They'll be be back looking to redeem their lands. Your alliance with Lithuania looks like a life-saver, though the more of Muscovy you take, the less likely they'll be to support you.
    Quote Originally Posted by Urza View Post
    Nice developments. You played your cards really well, but I hope that the Russians, or Poland-Lithuania, will get a good chance against you soon. (It would be too embarrassing for them otherwise.)
    Yes, I would say now it's us or Muscowy. I believe they can still field a larger army, and with their Shock 6 General they are a deadly opponent. Plus truces with Hordes last 25 years in SRI so no help from the Tartars for a while…
    During my games in HTTT, Poland used to be a loyal ally. Lithuania used to get aggressive after the end of the PU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chief Ragusa View Post
    A theocratic Catholic Russia would be interesting. The Imperial Circles came in a little in advance of OTL, but it's close enough. I'd laugh, if the Reformation started in the Order's lands.

    Pagan Finland ought to be a red rag to a bull - in and take and convert.
    As I said, we won't see a theocratic Russia… Will my Theologian increase the chance of having Protestantism born in my lands? That would be horrible LOL Under no circumstance the Livonian Order will abandon Catholicism!
    Yeah, Finland is annoying… I'd love to convert their country at least, but I can't do that with Pagans, right? Would I be able to get just Neva in a peace treaty even if it's their capital? I don't think a coastal province can be truly isolated... Grrrr.

    Anyway thanks for the feedback!
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  8. #48
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    An update is in the making and it will cover the Protestant Reformation (where surprising things happen), but in the meantime I wanted to correct something I told Gabor about the Hansa in SRI. At the beginning of the game it is indeed a simple trade league based in Lubeck, however, by meddling around the game, I discovered that the hanseatic cities have also the options of creating the Hansa as a country. You must have a COT in your capital worth 1000 or more and be a merchant republic, plus you must include in your League all the main Hanseatic cities (Hamburg, Riga, Utrecht, Bremen, Lubeck, Danzig and I don't know what else). Alternatively they must not exist as countries. The reward is to instantly annex some of them and get a core on the others, thus forming the country of the Hansa. Lubeck has obviously the initial advantage in enacting this decision.
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  9. #49
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    This is a great AAR. Keep up the good work!

  10. #50
    General gabor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kepler View Post
    An update is in the making and it will cover the Protestant Reformation (where surprising things happen), but in the meantime I wanted to correct something I told Gabor about the Hansa in SRI.
    Can't wait to read 'bout those 'surprising things'. Will the demands for reform reach as far as the lands of the Rus?

    As for Hansa I believe you described the vanilla mechanics. I strongly disagree with the concept of Hansa as a state. Helius's pre-HttT SRI and MM version was imo much more appealing and ...plausible Glad in my Danzig aar I got a chance to give him his due credit for his excellent work.

  11. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by TonyJoe View Post
    This is a great AAR. Keep up the good work!
    Thanks! I am about to post the next update.

    Quote Originally Posted by gabor View Post
    As for Hansa I believe you described the vanilla mechanics. I strongly disagree with the concept of Hansa as a state. Helius's pre-HttT SRI and MM version was imo much more appealing and ...plausible Glad in my Danzig aar I got a chance to give him his due credit for his excellent work.
    I suppose things got a bit more uniform with the introduction of Trade Leagues. I understand what you say in the sense that, from my scarce historical notions, Genoa and Venice were more like great traders with a lot of partners, instead the Hansa was more like a proper league and could be treated differently. So one would expect more twists like we saw in your AAR.
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    Chapter IX: Ninety-five Nails



    (Part of) the Ninety-five Theses.


    In the end I had too much material to fit in a single update… So this one will be mainly about our internal policy and, of course, the Protestant reformation in Europe. More action in the next update.
    To begin with, a quick recap or our economic situation:



    During the next years we will be converting our provinces (to Catholicism of course!) and each active Missionary requires some administrative efficiency to spare. Also depending on our Prestige our administrative level will change quite often, but, overall, we shall spend most of our time in the following situation:



    Not a very good one as you can see… But things will improve as we get cores and conversions.


    1502

    I add Riga to my sphere of influence; IIRC this should grant me +0.25 Diplomatic Skill and +0.1 Magistrates/year.
    My current mission is to have more ships than Denmark (37 while my naval force-limit is something like 10): I quickly cancel it and get a better one which is to establish a trade in Novgorod (5 placed Merchants). I soon complete it getting as a reward 5 new Merchants (useless as I don't plan to trade abroad) and 50 gold, which is good. My new mission is to convert Smolensk; I plan to change it ASAP because the reward is little (2 Prestige) and better missions could really drive the game forward.
    I get to a new Land Tech level which allows me to upgrade my Infantry to Landsknechte. I will get to Land 15 before switching to Government and aim for Gov Tech level 17 (new Idea).
    I get a Production Research Flawed event which costs me around 370 gold in investments (my cost to recover one Stab would be more than 800).
    But 1502 will be remembered for the day our old Grandmaster Johann Wolthuss died, allowing a new Knight to take his place:



    An average ruler but a good general with his Fire 4 and Shock 3.
    I get a foreign interference in Yaroslav by Muscowy (+1 BB, + 4 RR), as expected…
    In the rest of the world, the PU between Bohemia and Hungary has ended; Bohemia is free again, although with this historical start still pretty weak.


    1503-1504



    Big news in the Empire: because of a female ruler, Austria loses the Throne in favour of its rival Bavaria. This is bound to happen at some point, but it never happened to me so early. In normal conditions, Austria would be again Emperor at the next Election provided they have a male ruler. In normal conditions (spoiler intended)…
    I also think Aragon deserves a screen-cap for what it accomplished in these years:



    Defeating the Ottomans, they get Gibraltar, while Portugal frees and obtains Galicia. I wonder how Castille will react because their neighbours are sitting on two of their cores, but they seem very busy colonising at the moment. The Ottomans are also forced by England to free Wallachia from vassalage and release Albania as an independent state. It seems the Turks have been stopped for now.
    On our side, we are called to arms by Poland to fight against Crimea a war of tribal conquest. As usual, we send some war subsidies and sign a White Peace as soon as possible to preserve our cultural tradition.
    And this is how the war will end a few months later:



    But a more important news is that our old "friends" get released by Poland from vassalage:



    AI will accept a demand of independence if it has problems managing its empire. As you can see, the Teutons refuse our quick offer of an alliance (made for RP sake to be honest); relations are not too good after a couple Support for Dissidents Abroad events… Always on topic England offers us again an alliance (they are now busy fighting France BTW) but I refuse.
    On another subject, a new Theologian arrives in our country (Level 2). I employ him to replace the previous (and older) one.
    I have started to convert my non-core provinces, beginning with Kholm where the conversion chance is around 8% (but will go up). The idea is not to have more than 2 Missionaries active at the same time and enact the Concerted Missionary Effort province decision when I am close to 5 stored Missionaries. It will give +5% Conversion chance, but -0.1 Missionary/year and costs 1 Missionary to begin with. In this way I can keep having Missionaries available while speeding up the process and not going bankrupt. I remind you that Missionaries are scarce in SRI and conversion is basically impossible when Loyalty to the Old Regime is too high.
    Of course we have to face rebels but with our about 15k troops it's not a problem when we are at peace.


    1505

    We get to Land Tech 15 and start investing in Government as planned.
    In the Empire, Bohemia becomes Convener of its Circuit and I notice Austria did too, probably while it was Emperor. Later Wurttemberg becomes Convener of the Swabian Circuit.


    1506-1508

    Denmark DOWs Finland and quickly annexes it: bye bye Pagans! However, we now share a land border with Denmark so I decide to accept the next alliance offer from England, just in case… Poland is allied with Denmark and I am not sure they would come to my defence if I am under attack… Our old enemy, and now friend, England asks us immediately for help in the war against France… Not that they need it. They control the sea and will win the war just thanks to embargoes. However we accept, we send as usual some war subsidies and sign a White Peace when France offers it. As expected, France loses the conflict and releases Champagne. Later they DOWs and annex Bourbonnais. In this timeline France is struggling to become a true superpower.
    We get another foreign interference in Vyazma, again by Muscowy and that's if for our recent conquests. BB are now 13.1 and will be going down for a while.


    1509

    I cancel the mission to convert Smolensk and get a "new" one: Naval Race versus Denmark…
    Muscowy enters a war against Crimea to protect their useless ally of Georgia. The funny thing is: Muscowy is winning the war, but Georgia is war leader, gets beaten and signs peace with Crimea, offering them a Russian province, Khasimov!




    1510

    Kholm is converted! While Novgorod (with its 25% chance) is not yet.
    And here we go with first "bomb" of this update:



    Yes, turbo-Scandinavia! By granting them Statutes of Autonomy, Denmark got cores on Norway and Sweden, thus allowing them to form Scandinavia. Now, because of the Estates those provinces will be quite poor, still this new Kingdom commands an impressive territory and certainly doesn't love us (Relations -80). I suppose allying with England wasn't a bad idea. As a funny note, the game considers accomplished my mission to have more ships than Denmark. Yay! (?) And the new mission is… Attack Scandinavia! The reward is a core on Neva… I believe I will pass on this one too when I get the chance…


    1511

    Nothing new on our side (except fear and terror of the new power in the North) but, in the rest of the world, Castille DOWs Inca a bit ahead of schedule (which means their colonisation is going well) while Portugal is establishing trade outposts along the coast of Africa.


    1512

    During this year, we move a step towards Centralization (now Decentralization 3). We also get a new Theologian (Karl Koskull) in our country: this time a Level 6 one! I shuffle a bit my court, firing the old Government Tech advisor and the old Theologian, to employ the new one and a Diplomat I recruit from my cultural tradition. It costs me around 35% (leaving me with 45%) and I get a Level 4 advisor (Gotthard Koskull). A Diplomat will be good in reducing my BB and in speeding up the coring process. So this is the current situation:


    Rise of the Koskull brothers?


    But THIS will make 1512 a very bad year:


    I normally don't go for big screenshots but... AAAARRRGGGHHH!!!


    I find ironic that the place where I live has become the source of all evil in my game… The Emperor will get notified of each new Heretic Prince, quickly plunging Imperial Power to zero. Now, the map shows the conversion to Protestantism in the first month: fortunately the situation will become stable after that. The secret of this (heretic) success is in the new SRI decision to convert to Protestantism, which gives you lot of advantages and will instantly convert all of your non-autonomous cores to the new (blasphemous) faith.
    I was aware that the Reformation got a boost in SRI for DW, but I didn't know it was so big. I believe the decision is OK for AI in the sense it makes for a more challenging Reformation, but should be changed for the player, giving him more disadvantages. But enough of this wishful chitchatting. We have more pressing matters at hand. FOUR out of seven Electors have become Protestant. Power is shifting in the Empire… And in the wrong direction! Obviously I am not even considering converting!
    Oh, the Cleansing of Heresy CB is disabled within the Empire, so I can't just plan punitive expedition… In the next months the Livonian Order manages only this weak answer:



    I don't think this will actually stop the Reformation… But, if you think 1512 was the worst, keep reading and realise you are wrong…


    1513

    Something good to distract us:



    Also, the PU between Muscowy and Ryazan breaks as planned when the new Ivan becomes Duke of Moskva.
    But happyness is only an illusion as we soon realise:



    Shameful! Those who were Heretics will stay Heretics apparently… Actually having a Core in Rzhev will allow me to attempt a Conversion at about 8% chance even with this penalty.
    However, I wasn't referring to this when I was talking about bad news… I was more thinking about this:


    Epic fails (by Catholics) deserve big screenshots.


    The answer of the Emperor is to proclaim universal toleration, a word not even on the dictionary of the Livonian Order! This means the Emperor instantly converts to Protestantism and declares all of the Christian interpretations are legal within the Empire. This in turn will prompt a new wave of conversions, this time the ones who were scared of doing it earlier. And with Hesse it's five Protestant Electors.
    This is actually well-played by Bavaria. Things standing as they were, Austria would have won the next Elections, but now Bavaria has the support of the Protestant faction, which is the majority!
    Exactly as this picture shows:



    And the Heretic Emperor has already recovered a lot of the lost Power, plus he will be benefiting from the institutions Austria created…
    During the rest of year, a Catholic and angry Brandenburg DOWs heretic Pommerania (conquest).
    The Livonian Knights find some solace in the words of their Theologian:



    We also get the Fortification Effort event in Osel (+50% defensiveness x 10 years) which will fire from time to time thanks to our Defensive slider. Not as good as getting an extra Fort in HTTT, but better than nothing…
    After the massive betrayals within the HRE the Pope sees fit to show some respect towards his devout followers:



    I never got this before so I don't know how I can lose it or what other events might trigger, guess we'll see… The modifier in itself is pretty good anyway.


    1514

    A ray of hope… Word begins to circulate within the Empire of a League of Catholic Princes… Each country can choose whether to give it full support, indirect one or refuse. We are given a choice too:



    But that is not a real choice, right? We can only go for complete in-toleration. Among the others Catholic Princes, Austria and Bohemia are quick to give their full support.
    Is war going to be unavoidable? Stay tuned to find out!
    "The path to knighthood is paved with strength and nobility not LSD and sideburns." - Black Knight

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    Now you have 95 reasons to turn your attention to the south. The Great Schism? Bah, it's so cliché!

    I just fear the day the Calvinist movement will start... in your experience, do the Catholics or Protestants convert go reformed in a greater extent?

    And what is the situation outside the empire - does any Great Power starts having second thoughts about the True Faith?

  14. #54
    Editor-in-Chief AllmyJames's Avatar
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    Oh dear - a Scandanavian powerhouse to the North, an angry Moscow to the East and an heretical Emperor to the South-West. War seems inevitable in the next update - the question is...where?
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    That's a very ugly Reformation, at least if one is planning on staying Catholic. It's interesting to see this outcome since in my vanilla DW games it seems like the Catholics always end up dominating Europe with only a couple small states going Protestant or Reformed.

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    The drama! But that was a lightning fast reformation, taking less than two years from the publishing of the theses to the conversion of such a great number of monarchs AND provinces. It seems like everyone was just waiting for the chance.
    Anyway, I think you have some work on your hands.
    Current AAR (EU3 MMP2) : Bohemia
    Earlier AAR (EU3 MMP2) (Incomplete) : Pommerania

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    General gabor's Avatar
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    It seems the war of religion is going to start. The Livonian Knights are bound to participate, aren't they? Did the bigger European powers turn reformed? As long as it's only HRE affair, the reformation is manageable i think.

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    Major kepler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Memento Mori View Post
    Now you have 95 reasons to turn your attention to the south. The Great Schism? Bah, it's so cliché!

    I just fear the day the Calvinist movement will start... in your experience, do the Catholics or Protestants convert go reformed in a greater extent?

    And what is the situation outside the empire - does any Great Power starts having second thoughts about the True Faith?
    Quote Originally Posted by Urza View Post
    The drama! But that was a lightning fast reformation, taking less than two years from the publishing of the theses to the conversion of such a great number of monarchs AND provinces. It seems like everyone was just waiting for the chance.
    Anyway, I think you have some work on your hands.
    It's my first game on SRI for DW and the dynamics have been reworked compared to HTTT, so I don't know what will happen with Calvinism! We'll see.
    I re-played the reformation because I was curious and that time only two Electors converted within the HRE, while outside the empire Scotland joined the reformation immediatley.
    I think the decision to convert outright has a better chance to be taken by the AI if the country is small, so I guess we will have to wait to see if any of the great powers will convert, based on the actual spread of new faiths in their countries.
    I am playing a few years in the future and only France and Poland have got some relevant Protestant presence on their lands.

    Quote Originally Posted by TonyJoe View Post
    That's a very ugly Reformation, at least if one is planning on staying Catholic. It's interesting to see this outcome since in my vanilla DW games it seems like the Catholics always end up dominating Europe with only a couple small states going Protestant or Reformed.
    I like it this way, but FIVE Protestant Electors is really a hard blow...

    Quote Originally Posted by AllmyJames View Post
    Oh dear - a Scandanavian powerhouse to the North, an angry Moscow to the East and an heretical Emperor to the South-West. War seems inevitable in the next update - the question is...where?
    Quote Originally Posted by gabor View Post
    It seems the war of religion is going to start. The Livonian Knights are bound to participate, aren't they? Did the bigger European powers turn reformed? As long as it's only HRE affair, the reformation is manageable i think.
    I wish I could start the religious war, but first a Catholic leader has to be chosen and he must be willing to fight…
    In the next update (a shorter than usual one, possibly this evening), war breaks out, but in an unexpected way ;-)
    "The path to knighthood is paved with strength and nobility not LSD and sideburns." - Black Knight

  19. #59
    Major kepler's Avatar
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    Chapter X: War of the Crosses


    Battle of Tannenberg, A.D. 1410


    Historians debate on the main cause of the so-called War of the Crosses, which involved all the three main Knightly Orders. Some writers put the greatest emphasis on the personal grudges of the two most important advisors of Grandmaster Ludwig, Gotthard and Karl Koskull, against their older brother. Obviously the story of their banishment from Prussia for challenging the Hochmeister's decision and their arrival in Livonia where they rose to positions of respect and authority, one as High Chaplain, and called in secret by the small-folk the "Pope in the North", the other as Commander and first diplomat, has a wide basis of truth. However this analysis is partial as it ignores the rift which continuously grew wider between the two Orders, once friends, after the autonomy achieved by the Livonian Branch, and another rift within the very Teutonic Order, where many officials supported the idea of an union with their Livonian Brothers, against the Hochmeister's wishes.
    Eventually Grandmaster Ludwig was forced to make a hard decision for the good of the Order and all Livonia, as his predecessor Grandmaster Johann did when he granted autonomy to the newly converted Houses of Pskov and Tver, whose help proved essential in ruling and converting the rest of the Russian lands.
    What's funny, from a purely historical point of view of course, is that everybody was expecting the next major conflict in Europe to break out between Bavaria and Austria, who fought for spiritual and temporal supremacy in an Empire torn by the blasphemous reformation of the mad Italian monk, Agostino Rovigo.
    And, like often happens, everybody was wrong…

    - By an anonymous Chronicler of the Livonian Order



    1515-1516:

    The Pope decides to do something about these Heretics, DOWs Urbino with the Cleansing of Heresy CB (he has got Unam Sanctam as a NI), then convert and vassalize it. Well done!
    We manage to convert Vyazma and then Yaroslav. As conversions are achieved, we begin to spend most of the time in Competent Government, but the line is thin…
    We also get a new core in Yaroslav:


    I guess the Diplomat did help.


    I put Ryazan as well in my SoI, although at moment it feels a bit useless.
    I cancel the crazy mission to attack Scandinavia and I get a new mission to conquer Memel, a Teutonic province!



    I am going to go for this core; basically after two Supports for Dissidents Abroad events and a refused alliance, the union between the two Orders unfortunately must be enforced. The province in itself is not too valuable, but tax efficiency is secondary to survival against our powerful neighbours.
    The problem is that the Teutonic Order is allied with Poland and their chance of joining my war is very low, so I have to wait.


    1517

    We get to Trade Tech 15 and we can get a monopoly in Novgorod. With more than 5 placed merchants our trade modifier meant to help little traders has changed:



    Not a big deal for us, but it's of importance for real trading nations..
    Our ally England is dragged in yet another war against the Ottomans who are trying to reconquer Albania and they ask for our help. As usual: accept and send war subsidies. We wait for a white peace offer who is not coming, in the meantime we enjoy the Crusade bonus.


    1518-1520

    Beloozero embraces the True Faith as well.
    In the Empire, Brandenburg annexes Mecklenburg who entered the war to protect Pommerania. When one of the Imperial Princes is annexed, the Emperor gets a CB for a limited period of time: if he doesn't use it, like in this case, Imperial Power will suffer.
    I get some news from the colonisation front:



    The AI should be more likely to go for historical colonisation (although not deterministically)… But poor Incas!


    1521

    After running one of my routine checks, I find out that now I have a good chance of having Poland's help in unifying the Order. I think this might be due to the fact that Polish cores disappeared in the Teutonic lands and their King doesn't see them anymore as his "property".
    So this is the situation of the Teutonic Order:



    I DOW them in April with Conquest CB (3 BB for Memel) asking for my allies to join me. The chance for England to help us is Very Likely while the Polish one is Likely… I am taking some risk, but I am lucky, they both accept.
    About the Teutons friends, obviously they accept the defensive CTA, and I finally witness the true extent of the cascading alliances in DW…
    It goes as follow (I could have made a nice screenshots collage but I did not think about it): Scotland and Bohemia join the Teutons, Bohemia is War Leader, calls for Silesia and Venice, they agree, Venice is War Leader, calls for Hungary, they agree, Hungary is War Leader, calls for Castille, they agree, Castille is War Leader, they call for the Knights. The chain end.
    So, to recap:
    Livonian Alliance: Livonian Order*, Poland, Lithuania, England
    Teutonic Alliance: Castille*, Teutonic Order, Scotland, Bohemia, Silesia, Hungary, Venice, The Knights
    All the three Knightly Orders are involved in the war (hence the name of the chapter).
    Our navy is by far the greatest (courtesy of England, 44 Big Ships) so we are in a net position of advantage.
    On the other hand, I expect only to gain Memel out of this mess, so my main duty is to quickly get that province and then secure a peace with Castille to end the conflict.
    So, while Poland-Lithuania engages Hungary and Bohemia and while England attacks Scotland, we move south:



    While 2k soldiers begin the siege of Memel, the rest of our forces engage the Hochmeister in Warmia. I expect this war to be easy on me, so I left the other 8k soldiers in my homeland to put down revolts and (unlikely) landings on my western shores.
    Everything goes according to plans:



    After winning the Battle of Warmia, enemy forces surrender while retreating to Plock.
    At this time Ostpreussen is already under siege by Lithuanian forces, I leave there my Knights to see what's going on and the Grandmaster goes back to Memel to speed up the Siege with his Siege 2 value.
    I then realise I can withdraw my support to the Knights of Saint John:



    And it seems very appropriate to do that. It used to cost us some taxes, manpower and forcelimit; but no more Spies from now on. Anyway I have 2 of them at the moment which might come handy in future. I also repair my relations with the Pope.
    In November Crimea tries to take advantage of the situation and DOWs Poland to retake Zaporozhie. We enter the war to defend Poland and a new front is open: we didn't want that because Bohemia and especially Hungary are enough of a challenge. Fortunately Scandinavia decides to help Poland as well, although, well before they can send reinforcements, Poland is forced to Institute Liberum Veto… And now only Lithuania's Veto is left…

    At the end of 1521 this is the situation on the southern and western fronts:



    Situation uncertain in the struggle versus Hungary, while Scotland is basically defeated. You can see in the bottom-right corner some Castillian troops landed in Calais, but they shouldn't make any real damage over there.


    1522

    Memel falls and I decide to sign peace with the Teutons. Ostpreussen is a Level 3 Fort and the siege is still at 0%… It might take ages for that city to surrender, plus it's unimportant in our strategy.



    I get Memel as planned and I also force the Teutons to break their treaties with some Heretics (certainly made out of convenience).
    I then get a core in Memel (but not a BB reduction) and a new mission: to have a proper fleet (13 ships). I think I can manage to do that (but not now).
    Having a look at my diplomatic options, I succeed in signing peace with Hungary by conceding defeat. Now we can raise our warscore by crushing Bohemia and Poland can deal with Crimea.
    In march we engage what's left of the enemy in Ratibor, Silesia:



    And after these series of defeats, this is Castille's answer:



    Which we gladly accept. So hopefully this shows you can defeat cascading alliances with your own set of allies!
    During the rest of the year we can withdraw and replenish our forces. This war was far from long, anyway it was good we did not accrue any inflation at all during that period. We can then sign a White Peace with Crimea (Poland can now deal with them quite easily) and the Ottomans, to start building up again our Cultural Tradition.
    However, 1522 will be remembered as another bad year. The Catholic Princes have assembled in Wien choosing Austria as their leader… The only problem is that our leader doesn't have any will to fight!



    This hits us a rock… Basically in SRI a religious war will break out within the Empire if a Catholic Emperor doesn't go for Toleration (which in my experience in HTTT is the most likely outcome) or if a Protestant Emperor comes into a power. However in this last case the League must be willing to fight. I had a look at the Event which fires for the League Leader (the strongest Catholic country in the League) and several factors are taken into account to decide whether or not to go to war. A bit anti-climatic perhaps but realistic as the Emperor has the backing of several Princes and he's not actually trying to suppress Catholicism (although I am sure he would like the idea).
    I was planning to get military access to the Empire during the war and try to convert as many Electors as possible back to Catholicism but this will have to wait. Basically the religious war follows its course and at the end of the fighting a real, lasting peace can be signed via Event or the two sides can just prepare themselves for another round. Eventually the Reichstag will enforce a peace but it's perfectly possible to have two or more wars which actually will concur to determine the final outcome of the religious war.
    Among the possible finals for the war, the most likely is an indecisive victory for one side or a draw: Toleration is the reward for a Protestant victory, re-conversion of the Heretic Bishoprics to Catholicism for a Catholic victory, both results as a compromise in case of a draw. Actual warscore, taken provinces and converted enemies are among the factors which will determine the final outcome.
    Unfortunately describing this mechanism doesn't pay enough honours to Helius who designed it and, I assure you, it's a very funny part of this mod. Hopefully in one of my future AARs I will get a chance to talk better about it.
    Back on track, before the end of the year we receive an alliance offer from Brandenburg which I accept to have a Catholic friend in the heart of the Empire. If war breaks out and I am alliance leader I plan on using Brandenburg and convert some of the Heretic Princes, but maybe this is just some wishful thinking…
    In December I am guaranteed by Austria… Trying to apologise, are we? Not sure how much this will help, but it's nice to see the Catholic powers in the HRE sticking together (and I believe we could have kicked the Emperor's royal bottom if we were given a chance).


    1523

    We get to Government Tech 17 and we pick Guild Privileges as 4th NI:



    Many of our provinces have got good production value and Guild Privileges is one of the few NIs which will improve our AE. We will stabilise around Competent Government thanks to this.
    I also show you some of the other NI in DW, with some differences from Vanilla. Church Attendance Duty is nice, it could be my 6th NI, before moving capital and culture-shifting. The next NI I am pretty sure will be Bureaucracy instead.
    I can now go back to research Land Tech aiming for the new significant levels.
    The war between Ottomans and England ends with Albania more or less intact and Serbia release from Turkish dominance. However Wallachia, who foolishly challenged the Ottomans, lost Oltenia to them.
    Poland signs peace as well, with Crimea:



    Food for the Kazan Horde I am afraid… Because Scandinavia became War Leader against Crimea, fighting still continues on the Lithuanian border.
    In Rome, recent events took their toll on Pope Iulius II who dies leaving behind him a church divided. The new Pope, Gregorius XIII, continues the policy of his predecessor and DOWs heretic Siena. War breaks out in Italy as all the Italian powers choose sides, with the important note that the Emperor joins the battle in protection of the HRE against the Pope…
    Too bad we can't do anything. Certainly I am considering leaving the HRE, but the Grandmaster still needs the recognition which comes with belonging to the Empire. Plus for this AAR purposes it can be more interesting to stick with the HRE for now.
    Anyway in March we get our hands full. England for some reason DOWs Novgorod using the Liberation CB (thanks to their Bill of Rights) and calls us to arms. I prefer to conduct my own war against the infidels and I DOW Novgorod as well:



    Poland and Brandenburg would be happy to come but I don't call them outright. Soon I realise I am fighting Ryazan and Lubeck, so I guess Brandenburg's help will actually come at hand!
    I can tell you I will use this occasion to fight Muscowy as well, so I postpone this third Russian campaign to next update.
    Until next time!
    "The path to knighthood is paved with strength and nobility not LSD and sideburns." - Black Knight

  20. #60
    General gabor's Avatar
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    You seem to be trying to perform an impossible split. On one hand you keep an eye on the religious upheavels in the Empire (and I demand the the Knights get involved!); on the other the Russian East is where you're planning to expand! Understandable as you accept their culture and these provinces will provide you with the means to shape the things in the HRE the way you want.

    What's not to love about those core-giving missions!

    The cascade alliance is odd. I wonder how does it play with the alliance leader thing then. One of my pet hates was that e.g. Denmark to conquer Holstein had to ultimately peace out the Swiss.

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