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Thread: Last Tango in 1.3 - An Argentine AAR

  1. #1
    Ask how many Divisions I have! InnocentIII's Avatar
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    Last Tango in 1.3 - An Argentine AAR

    I love gameplay AARs (badger_ken and naggy, among others), and I've played through five games of Vicky 2 in the last couple weeks, and I wanted to do an AAR. Why Argentina? Because I drew the ten of diamonds, duh! I made a chart of nations I hadn't played much or had never played, and wanted to, and assigned a country to each card. After doing so-so as Greece (15th) and the OE (5th, but made GP late and 5th was from spamming dreadnoughts), and Persia (only 14th), but 5th as Haiti of all places, Argentina came up next.

    So what can we tell from the intro? First, that I'm not that good. Second, that I tend to play quick games (could these two be related? nah). And third, that a Western Hemisphere minor can go gangbusters if you get lucky. My Haiti was far more powerful than my OE (which was SOIed by, and never fought, Russia). So let us see what an Argentine tango will do to the world.

    Goals:
    - an interesting gameplay AAR from a guy who isn't that good;
    - bite off more than I can chew! No fun to read a safe AAR.
    - democratize! My Haiti democratized late because I did not understand the rules, but ended up with five or six NFs from an obscure primary culture which started at ~100k. I want a democracy sooner.
    - build a decent starting base from which to work on the rest of the world. Yes, I wanna bite off more than I can chew, but not from the get go. We got that from Johan's first-ever Texas AAR. Short but bitter? Um, no.
    - try not to do the same thing everybody else does. I've played to 1850ish and I didn't follow this too well. Meh.
    - Colonize. Haiti hit 16 too late to join the fun. Very frustrating.
    - Figure out how to add photos to a post. Now there is a worthy goal.
    - Figure out how to link chapters, which I assume is easy.

    CHAPTERS

    Chapter One: A New Hope
    Chapter Two: Fighting in Mountains, Badly
    Chapter Three: Fighting In Mountains, Better
    Chapter Four: R&R, Rest and Research
    Chapter Five: Johore or Mine?
    Chapter Six: Dumb and Dumber
    Chapter Seven: How Will it End?
    Chapter Eight: That Could Have Gone ... Better
    Chapter Nine: Into Africa
    Chapter Ten: Fighting A Great Power
    Chapter Eleven: Great Power Games
    Chapter Twelve: Playing in Traffic
    Chapter Thirteen: Is It Me, Or Is It Chile In Here?
    Chapter Fourteen: Aftermath
    Chapter Fifteen: Into Europe
    Chapter Sixteen: Argentina Outnumbered
    Chapter Seventeen: Two Million Screaming Russians
    Chapter Eighteen: War In Russia
    Chapter Nineteen: A Couple More Wars
    Chapter Twenty: Fighting Sauron
    Chapter Twenty-One: The Argentine Invasion
    Chapter Twenty-Two: To The Eternal Glory of the Infantry
    Chapter Twenty-Three: The End of the War
    Chapter Twenty-Four: Into Germany!
    Chapter Twenty-Five: To Berlin!
    Chapter Twenty-Six: Caution - Genius At Work!
    Chapter Twenty-Seven: The Third Russian War
    Chapter Twenty-Eight: Will Poland Breath Free?
    Chapter Twenty-Nine: The Second German War
    Chapter Thirty: Another European War
    Chapter Thirty-One: At the Gates of Vienna
    Chapter Thirty-Two: The Fourth Russian War
    Chapter Thirty-Three: A Wider War
    Chapter Thirty-Four: The World is Changing
    Chapter Thirty-Five: At World At War
    Chapter Thirty-Six: Freedom of the Seas
    Chapter Thirty Seven: The Third German War
    Chapter Thirty Eight: The End
    Last edited by InnocentIII; 22-10-2011 at 23:44. Reason: Updated Chapter List
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  2. #2
    Ask how many Divisions I have! InnocentIII's Avatar
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    Chapter One: A New Hope

    Argentinos! Argentinos! We are all shirtless now. Well, boatless in any event. So we begin to form a navy of three clipper transports. I have low prestige, so this takes longer than I'd like. Freedom of Trade is mandatory as a first tech, if you don't have it, so that's what I start with.

    In my Haiti game, I learned that even a puny military power could conquer Zulu right from the start, and for 8 BB/Infamy, it's worth it. Decent population for soldiers and out of the way location, so taking it won't attract other powers. If I can get the tech and level 16 quick enough, I can colonize from the interior if I take Transvaal as well. So when my boats are done, we load up and head for the African coast.



    The combat doesn't take long, I probably could have done with one brigade and not three, but with three provinces I wanted three brigades to finish the occupations sooner. Even after I drop stockpile spending, and even with 100% taxes and 100% tarrifs and middling spending elsewhere, my finances suck. I keep some stockpile in the hopes that rebellion or a frisky Brazil won't find me with 0.0 Org. Not sure 15-20% spending helps enough to be worth the cost, but I hope so.



    The occupation of Zulu proceeds apace, and in due course, my first conquest is complete. All Argentina does the tango in celebration, even little babies and old women who should really be sitting down.



    Did I mention that I'm not that good? The little unemployment symbol is regrettably not a sign that I'd filled a 10,000 seat factory, but that in July of 1837 I finally remembered that as a State Capitalist I can build my own factories, and a few would be Craftsmen jump the gun. Oops. Cement, I think it was. Not as good as liquor, but Liquor factories often suffer from lack of inputs early, and I figure there's coal everywhere. By the way, I left my 9,000 man army in Zulu because I could not recruit there right away. That proves to be a mistake.

    One thing I have learned is that 25 Infamy is more of a guideline than a rule. Even for minor states. It's risky, but if you need to, you can go a fraction over 25 and get away with it sometimes. So I do. Can't really remember why, I think I was in a hurry. Anyway, I DoW Uraguay for the full 20 BB which comes from Conquest, which puts me around 0.50 over the limit. The war is quick, my remaining army was 18,000 men, half cavalry, and Uraguay had 3k. So the only hard parts were paying to get my Org up before the war, and waiting for the occupations to finish.



    I'm up to Rank 22, though I've bounced around. November 1939 and zero industry points. Low population, low literacy, low industry. I've been NFing Clergy in Buenos Aires, my only big state at 65k. As you can see below, my taxes are still maxxed, my income is still way too low. I get +9 a day with stockpiles at zero. Don't quint, just trust me when I say I'm up to rank 18 here.



    Here are my states. As you can see, my Zulu addition is far and away my biggest state, more than 1/3 of my nation, though as a colony, not a state, the Zulu will have to fight, not make stuff. Uraguay, while much smaller, at least had many of the right culture pops.



    And to finish things out, yes, I did go for my cores, eventually. However, I notice that Bolivia had grabbed the nicest (non-capitol) state from Chile when I get a border incident granting me a free Bolivian state. Thanks! The war, however, goes not so well for two reasons. One, I left 9,000 valuable troops in Zulu. Two, I'm not that good. Here's a glimpse of the war when things were going pretty well, considering.



    [NOTE ON PHOTOS - I'm working on getting better at making these show enough to be worth doing. Flikr might limit me too much in screen size. Or it might be me. Sorry for the smaller images, it's the overall situation and not the top bar I mean for people to see] EDIT - I replaced them!
    Last edited by InnocentIII; 29-09-2011 at 01:36. Reason: Replaced Images
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  3. #3
    Historically plausible Dewirix's Avatar
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    Learning AARs are always fun and it seems you have good taste with the authors you've already cited.

    Argentina's a good country to start with. As you say, it's not a guaranteed GP, but it's got good potential.

    Not sure I'd have gone for Uruguay like that: 20 infamy's a steep price for a single state when you can pick up two others for the same cost.

    On the photos, I think they're generally fine, but it's nice to see the top bar sometimes. Maybe you could just show us it at the beginning or end of an update?
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  4. #4
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    If the Bolivian war starts getting too bad try white peace to get out of it. Usually AI's will grant it if they don't have any war goals of their own.

    After gobbling up Uruguay I think your best strategy is to expand in South America while lowering your Infamy is through free CB events. So reduce your relations between you and your neighbors, then fight your wars as fast as your truces expire with Brazil, Bolivia and Chile. Don't go beyond the free state CBs till your infamy goes down, you'll need the infamy room for expanding more overseas.

    I'd either start first with Brazil early for the first war if you can arrange it, or leave it alone if you don't get a CB on them in the next decade. This is because Brazil gets placed into a French or British sphere a lot because of their proximity to the European colonies to its North. So unless you're a GP with the ability to mess with those Euro GP nations, you'd just be committing suicide if Brazil is friendly with any of them.

    Once you get your infamy down, go grab Brunai and Johore for resources (future rubber and oil for Brunai and Gold from Jahore). Then grab a slice of Africa off Oman for future colonial expansion there. Another play is Dubai, since late game it's worth the oil.

    Lastly, try to get the US or UK to sphere you so that you have umbrella protection from other GPs. Soon as you get to GP status that US sphere will drop and you can spread your wings as you come out of your sphere cocoon.
    Last edited by brycef; 16-09-2011 at 21:06.
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  5. #5
    First Lieutenant Vaya con Queso's Avatar
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    Interesting choice going for Zulu. I've never tried Argentina myself, but I would have started by waiting for Brazil to smash Bolivia's army when they go for Amazonas, and then go after my cores, as well as Potosi and La Paz (which has ~220k pop). Either that, or I'd take one extra region from Bolivia (probably La Paz, if Brazil didn't take it, too), and the Los Rios region from Chile (which has two iron-producing provinces and attracts a lot of immigrants).

    But that's just me. You do things your own way. It's always good to see a South American AAR!

  6. #6
    East vs West developer Leonaru's Avatar
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    Nice AAR, but I'd like to see bigger pictures.
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  7. #7
    Ask how many Divisions I have! InnocentIII's Avatar
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    Chapter Two: Fighting in Mountains, Badly

    Dewirix - On Uraguay, my thinking was that I wanted the Plantinean pops, and it was gonna cost me 20 whenever I took it, so conquer it early. I will always be giving up juicier targets if I take it, later they will be much juicier. Also, 20BB slowing me down is a desirable effect. I'm not looking to maxx out Argentina really. On photos, I have realized how easy it is to edit in Paint, so you'll be seeing no more full screen captures, and definitely some top bars.

    brycef - The Bolivian war was never quite that bad. As for the rest, I think you'll be happy.

    Vaya con Queso - I really liked Zulu in my Haiti game. I'll have to look at the other Chilean State.

    Leonaru - Not sure if they'll be bigger, but the pictures are now cropped to show the information better!

    It’s 1841 and I got a free CB to acquire a state which Bolivia owns. Since Bolivia had just taken Potosi from Chile, I not only had a nice state, but an opponent who I hoped had not fully recovered from the prior war. So I DoW Bolivia with the Wargoal of acquiring Potosi. Chile has three states I believe, its capitol, something down south, and Potosi. So my war with Bolivia will give me what might be the second best state I could have gotten from Chile.

    My army still has 18,000 men in Argentina (half cavalry half infantry), and 9,000 safely in Africa. I split my force into three for attrition reasons, one brigade of cavalry and infantry each, and I pounce. Well, pounce-ish. Unfortunately, the thing I see looking over my screenshots is that I worry about conducting my occupation before the enemy army is dead. Yeah, you can do that if you outclass your enemy, but when forces are pretty even, you have to kill the army to take the land, not the other way around. Fortunately, my initial pounce had me defending while in Bolivian mountains.



    Of course, I went in with my better attack generals, and Senior Jove is not great shakes on the defensive. To be fair, he’s better than the bunch of stuffed cuckoos resting back in Buenos Aires, whose stat pages look like Christmas trees with their mingling of red and green. Also, how did backward, once-and-future-landlocked Bolivia get advanced cannon when all I get is rifles? I suppose I should have built artillery. On the other hand, by this point in the fight it looks like the artillery is all I am fighting. They’d have been better off with more rifles.



    The result is no great victory, however. Bolivia outnumbered me by around 500 men at the start, and I outnumbered them by 500 at the end, but my 2800 losses to their 4000 losses was not a good sign. If I’d paid more attention to that, I’d have done better thereafter.

    Okay, here’s where a veteran AAR writer would have been preferable. An experienced writer, suffering a humiliating defeat due to poor play (I lost an army because I divided my forces), would have thought “I need to take a screenshot of that”. All I could think was “holy &@^&, I better bring the guys from Africa". I did take screenshot, showing the army which barely survived. Fortunately, I had allied with Peru among my many local suitors in the 1830, thinking that it would be a long time before I considered attacking them. This gave my surviving army a place to retreat to, and a safe one at that, since Bolivia appears not to have access.



    In the meantime, I learn another lesson. I ship my army from Africa in the same, unrepaired, Clipper Transports they went to Africa in. The ones which sat off the coast waiting for Zulu to be occupied. One of my transports sinks on the way back, the other two limp into Peru at 2% and 3%. Still, what counts is that my men are safely ready to be added to combat, and that I won’t have to pay naval upkeep for a long time. In my defense, one problem with playing many fast games of Vicky2 in quick succession is that it’s tough to keep track of how damaging Atlantic crossings can be for early ships, and how annoying it is not to have naval bases. Plus, I would have had to look at my navy at some point, and I generally don't.

    My occupy-land-then-kill-soldiers strategy did get me some land, including Bolivia’s capitol, which Bolivia then tried to take back. Both sides fed armies into the battle, and pretty soon Bolivia and Argentina join in shouting “I’m All In!”



    While this epic battle rages, and starts going my way, we get a huge RGO boost.



    In a battle which would make Phyrrus proud, I lost 9500 while I killed 7000. I eliminated the numeric advantage we had when the battle started so that the next battle would be even. What a guy!



    At then end of the battle I see the flag indicating that Bolivia is spamming WP offers at me, but apparently they were impressed with our willingness to take losses.



    Here is where we stand after the Bolivian war. We’ve doubled our 1836 population, and our rank has plummeted (this is mostly prestige events, I think, and my lack of industry).



    We added Potosi, now my most populous state. You can see from this why I wanted Uraguay (which I think is what’s showing on the right), 85% is my primary culture, and even with Potosi it’s my third largest state.



    Here is a look at my finances. I'll lay off the finances later, but my point is that it's rough playing a country which has constant financial problems.



    30,000 in debt, and the +50 a day is unsustainable, since it requires 100% taxes across the board and 100% tariffs. My loans cost me 20/d. Fortunately, my bureaucrats have fled in such large numbers that it’s cheap to pay them. That’s something I don’t get. I assume middle class taxes cost me here, but I’m not sure.

    So Argentina continues to expand, but my BB is still high, and I'm almost out of CBs. Almost.
    Last edited by InnocentIII; 17-09-2011 at 03:20. Reason: switched to bigger images
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  8. #8
    First Lieutenant Vaya con Queso's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by InnocentIII View Post

    I really liked Zulu in my Haiti game. I'll have to look at the other Chilean State.
    Yes, now that I think about it, zulu is a good early choice. It may have ~70k less pop than La Paz, but it also has only three provinces compared to La Paz's 6 or 7, so RGOs fill up faster and more soldiers pops can be created created. Not bad for 8 infamy. (Edit: I may have thought of a better option; Sindh. It has one state, 3 provinces, uncivilized, like Zulu, but almost 500k pop! I should try that when I get around to playing Argentina...)

    And yes, South American wars can be pretty close-cut in the beginning. Regarding the artillery, the supplies needed to build it are easily available at the start of the game. Recruiting one or two brigades of artillery at the beginning can make a big difference in wars involving such small numbers of troops. Too bad you couldn't hold out long enough to get your cores, though.

    Also, beware Chile; if you leave them alone, they'll have twice your population and a large army before you even know what happened.

    Keep up the fight!
    Last edited by Vaya con Queso; 17-09-2011 at 10:46.

  9. #9
    Ask how many Divisions I have! InnocentIII's Avatar
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    Chapter Three: Fighting In Mountains, Better

    Vaya con Queso - Good points, and you're right about Chile, even reduced they're my only real danger other than Brazil.

    I have a BB in the 20s, with a five year truce with the country I have cores on, so I settle in to absorb my recent acquisitions, and try to get Argentina moving in some way other than conquest. In November 1942 I take a screenshot of my industry. You can see the cement factory in BA, the glass factory in Uraguay, and the Liquor factory I built in Potosi. The wine factory was built by my Capis. My daughter knows that when she hears the game spam building sounds that Im about to turn to her and ask whats that sound? And shell say your free railroads. If she was younger shed be thrilled that she got it right, but now that shes looking at colleges her answer comes with a free rolling of the eyes. The right side of the image shows that Argentines are accustomed to getting advance copies of not-yet-published books. Pretty good for literacy of thirteen.



    "They like me, they really like me!" The UK, that is. We must join with Sauron. badger_ken was right to liken the UK to the Eye of Sauron: all you can do is hope to avoid its gaze. I suspect that UK spendng influence on me is another benefit of the taking Zulu a land border with the UK. It made me boost our relations, of course, out of fear. It also made any attempt by the UK to influence me more effective, and I think the AI values that highly. What really matters is that we are adored, we are loved!



    Lord knows I do not need another NF, it will be ages to get to 2 million Platineans, but I need the plurality which comes from Ideological Thought. My clergy and literacy wont be enough to give me the RPs I need, and I want to democratize, which in the long run will be helped by Con, I hope. My research pays immediate dividends, especially the 10% boost to Political Reform desires. I was at 110% already.



    My five years of peace with Bolivia is coming to an end. They have land which is rightfully mine, the Ledger shows Bolivia with two brigades, so I move into position. Heres a display of my cores. Note that Im still stuck at Rank 27. Not impressive, but I think Im getting to the foundation I wanted to have before I do anything particularly stupid. Note that Im finishing up Idealism, which will give me a big RP boost, Im already over 9RP from 6-something not long ago. Bolivia doesnt have much an army, so this looks to be a better war than the last one. My best army will rest up in Zulu. I'm sure the world market will spare me some clippers some day. In the meantime, I have no navy.



    Attacking into mountains doesnt give me the kill ratio Id like, but I do trundle the enemy out of their capitol.



    My two mobilized divisions move to occupy territory, while I chase down the enemy army before it can recover.



    To celebrate a nearby victory (unimpressive, and I think those were recent conscripts at that), we finish our research into conducting research.



    Finally outnumbering the enemy by a good margin, I mop up the Bolivians.



    We spread out and take over the country, and in mid-December 1847 Bolivia bows to the inevitable. After a few victories I had added my second core to my wargoals. Yes, it costs me an easy CB later, but whats the benefit of saving a CB, really, if it means letting your foe keep the state five more years? Better to take what I can as soon as I can. Sauron seems to agree, since six weeks after my victory he offers me a formal alliance, beyond simply being in the UKs SOI. This is not the impenetrable shield Ive been tempted to think it was. I learned that the hard way as Greece when the Ottomans DoWed me and the UK said I wonder wholl win when I was Allied and Sphered. I could have told them.

    Sorry, this next image is a bit busy. Top bar and left are end of war, December 1847. Right hand side is the alliance offer, and the bar below it is from that same date. Huh. My literacy dropped by taking my cores, and my RP went down. Finally, I found people more ignorant than my own, good thing I annexed them!



    Heres where we stand financially. Exciting, isn't it? Well, at least this looks like a normal screen, finally. Except my Bureaucrats are even more non-existant than usual. You know what? I'll get some new bureaucrats, for a bit, when I import them from abroad, along with other people who can read. My debt has been halved, anyway.



    Next Chapter will be mostly domestic. Hint: if your people are happy with something you don't like, make them unhappy!
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  10. #10
    First Lieutenant Vaya con Queso's Avatar
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    I tried out Argentina earlier today; I really underestimated just how poor they are in the beginning. So forget what I said about getting artillery right away, or going after Sindh.

    I managed to become a Democracy by 1853; let's see if you can do better.

    Also, is that an alliance proposal from the UK? Lucky you.

  11. #11
    Historically plausible Dewirix's Avatar
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    Things look to be going well. I completely agree with your reasoning on CBs. You still take the 10 infamy hit when you add a non-core state as a wargoal, so it doesn't really matter when you take your cores back. The sooner the better in my book.

    You started the update at #27 and finished at #18, so you seem to be going in the right direction fairly quickly. Having your industry up and running will definitely help.
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  12. #12
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    Big pictures.
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  13. #13
    Ask how many Divisions I have! InnocentIII's Avatar
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    Chapter Four: R&R, Rest and Research

    Vaya con Queso We'll soon see if I met your challenge. And yes, the UK made life easier for me, sort of.

    Dewirix I probably could have had the cores in the first war, but I felt lucky to get what I did. My rank bounces around quite a bit. I need industry.

    Leonaru Glad to oblige, my original full-screen shots were a bad idea.

    Here's a nice map of where I'm starting from. Doesn't look much different from Argentina's start, and doesn't show Zulu, but I have grown a bit, four new states.



    My domestic goals, since industrializing isn't something I can go for directly with a small, illiterate populace, are twofold. First, jack up MIL when I get the chance. I need political reforms, and with many conservatives in the upper house, they need to be afraid. They fear MIL. Second, work on literacy. To that end, I discover Malthusian Thought, with +10% to literacy increases. I have left much of my industrial research undone, but as you can see, the first-tier techs take only nine months now, so I work on them.



    Here's a look at a typical pair of decisions. On the left, I have a chance to enrage my illiterate farmers, striking fear into conservatives in the House of Lords, and pushing them to give me what I want politically. Frankly, with my budget, it was worth doing for the $3000 [editor - they're not dollars; me - shut up]. On the right, Mechanical Production is a cornucopia of inventions.



    Arggg! Another shot at building support for political reform leaves me 0.06% short in the upper house. 49.94%!? How many people are in the Upper House that I can be 6% of 1% short? Can't we just vote when someone on their side goes to use the necessary?



    Granted, the MIL from building restrictions comes over time, not immediately, and Assimilation is what I wanted. Meanwhile, research continues, and I solve the World Supply of Clippers Conundrum. It turns out that from my vast genius-like arsenal of brilliant moves, I pulled the trick of setting clipper purchases to zero, so that I could starve my navy and still move the stockpile slider to allow my army to prepare for wars, all while not going bankrupt. I switch to the trick of not doing that anymore, and build four transports. Mechanical Production is also discovered.



    Hmm, it turns out that if I kill 1% of the Pops in Formosa, their MIL increases by 4. I accept their proposal, and wonder what happens if I kill 3%? In other news, Mechanised Production ftw



    Mass murder pays off! Come January 1851, a combination of Liberals and frightened Conservatives permit me to enact the political reform of my choice.



    On the theory that people with land will always want to vote, and demand the vote later, I say "Let there be Harassment!"



    As I understand the rules (I searched within the Vicky2 files, found "Thaw" which is what happened in my Haiti game, signifying the move to Democracy; that was in "Localization" and pointed to a Political Event #), to change from Presidential Dictatorship to Democracy, I need an Appointed Upper House (i.e. not Ruling Party Only), which I started the game with. I need Harassment or better in political parties, i.e alternate parties must not be outlawed. Finally, and this will come soon, I hope, I need at least the Landed to vote. Then, with a mean-time-to-happen of one month, I turn into a Democracy. This is important because Western Hemisphere Democracies are Pop magnets, and I want to flood Argentina with literate immigrants so my illiterate peasants have someone to look up to. I promise next chapter I'll attack someone, though I'm not yet strong enough to do something stupid.

    Good news though, in the next chapter it turns out that I'm not the only one in this game with the option of doing stupid things!
    I follow Paradox on Twitter and have Johan's photo on my phone for Twitter messages. I also follow the Pope. When the Pontiff tweets, I see the picture and lately I wonder "yes, but is Johan speaking ex cathedra?"
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  14. #14
    First Lieutenant Vaya con Queso's Avatar
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    It looks like you may beat me by one year; I had bad luck with the militancy-boosting events, and my militancy was rather low (about 0.5) until I took Araucania from Chile. That gave me enough militancy to enact 'Harassment' in 1851 and 'Only Landed' the next year.

    But enough about me; what are your long-term goals? South American unification? Colonial empire? Communist uprising? :P

  15. #15
    People's Commissar of the Navy Demi Moderator Avindian's Avatar
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    Neat stuff!
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  16. #16
    This looks cool. Good luck expanding!

  17. #17
    Ask how many Divisions I have! InnocentIII's Avatar
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    Chapter Five: Johore or Mine?

    Vaya con Queso I think we're going to see that Democracy isn't all I was hoping it would be.

    Avindian and Omen Thanks, hope you enjoy it.

    Clearly, Johore is mine. I must have Johore. If I haven't mentioned it before, Argentina has money problems. I decide to arrange for direct deposit from the World's Local Bank. Johore is almost entirely composed of precious metal, with one province producing wood (for treasure chests). Plus, the UK has conveniently located ports along the way, and a place for my troops to pull into port so they can freshen up and walk to battle on dry land instead of having to wade ashore.



    The Johore invasion consists of one insta-win battle and a bit of waiting. Here's the top strip and the inevitable end to my war.



    Now that my finances are on a sound footing, I can wait for events to unfold. They don't take long. Another January, another Political Reform!



    Now I need only wait until MTTH=1month turns me into a Democracy. It took a fair amount of time, so long that I double checked the facts, but in June



    Argentina is now a Democracy, open for all the disgruntled, well-read, well trained Europeans to come on down and make a new home for themselves. I watch my population figures, and sigh. I try an NF for immigrants in Buenos Aires for a bit, and while I see a few 100s pop up in my national daily PopChange, I barely move from 65.30k to 65.31 while I'm watching it. I know that in the long run this will be a key to my fortunes, but apparently I needn't have rushed.

    The following year, I get another big RGO boost. Note that Argentina's population increased about 2k in the last 18 months or so. Not a grounbreaking change. We'll have to wait for a potato famine I suppose.



    I've been promising to do something stupid. While it's not coming for a while yet, I am working hard to think of something seriously unwise, yet not suicidal. Suddenly, I hear the unwelcome sound of a Declaration of War being issued against me. Portugal? No. Someone local (Chile's army outnumbers me yet, and probably has equal or better techs)? No. It's Netherlands! Peru breaks our alliance, but more importantly, I see no sign of the UK. Because the game pauses when I get DoWed (I play fast, but I'm not grotesquely stupid [ed - we'll see!]), I check to make sure I am sphered and allied, and think "guys, guys, this isn't funny anymore". I unpause and the UK keeps its promise to defend me. I'm safe. Even if the Dutch crush me, they can't score high enough vs the UK to get a good offer. They have 28 brigades and cannot match Sauron's fleet. I look for what the Dutch Wargoal is, and it's Santa Fe, an Argentine state just north of my capitol. What?



    Santa Fe is the green state. Not the green state mostly covered up on the bottom. No, not the other green state mostly covered up in the north. It's the green state mostly not covered up. I check out the Netherlands' homeland, wondering if they annexed Belgium and need more space. No. In fact, Belgium has taken chunks of Holland.



    Not only is the Netherlands a shadow of her former self, the map is a reminder that she is, what is the military term for it? Right next door to the UK! Helping me a bit is that I took 18 months in 1854-5 to research Army Professionalism. I won't be the equal of the Dutch, and they have 28 brigades, but I'll be better than I was before. So it's war with Holland. I really have no idea what's in store. I saved the game and then wrote this. I can't think I'm in much danger, though I might have provinces occupied, temporarily. The trouble with fighting an alliance with any major power is not so much losing battles or territory, though that happens, or even blockades, and that happens a lot. It's that your conquests count against some monster land mass. You cannot take bits of Egypt if the USA intervenes, not because the USA beats you, but because your 98% warscore vis a vis Egypt counts as 0.98% vis a vis the USA. Well, I avoid those fights these days, so it's been a while since I had to test my theory, but that's how I remember it.

    Had the Dutch demanded Johore, well, that would have been potential trouble. Johore has only four provinces (that I own, two are Siamese). It's on a peninsula so not much room for maneuver. I have two Cavalry brigades defending, and the Dutch could have massed their fleet in the Pacific, where a dinghy with a slingshot is a respected naval force until 1900. If they had done that, I'd be stuck praying the AI UK doesn't make peace at my expense solely because war is annoying. That's what I'd do. But mainland Argentina? I half expect that I will never see a Dutchman anywhere the entire war, except where British forces remove the fog of war. But I do not know. So tune in next time. Oh, I do promise to do something stupid, eventually, but I do not promise to DoW a British ally with a wargoal of taking a state I probably can't even reach. I'm shooting for stupid and interesting, not stupid and pointless.

    Stupid and pointless I could do right now.
    I follow Paradox on Twitter and have Johan's photo on my phone for Twitter messages. I also follow the Pope. When the Pontiff tweets, I see the picture and lately I wonder "yes, but is Johan speaking ex cathedra?"
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  18. #18
    Historically plausible Dewirix's Avatar
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    I think you'd be very unlucky to see a single Dutch ship or soldier in Argentina, although they may make a move on Johore. The Royal Navy will sweep them from the seas elsewhere - it ain't the seventeenth century any more.
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  19. #19
    Major brycef's Avatar
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    They'll come on down from Surinam thru Brazil if they can. If they don't have Military Access from Brazil, then they'll land from a fleet near BA. I'd station my troops around there. Mass and decide what to defend when they arrive. Best to keep out of a battle and just move in behind them to reoccupy what they took behind their armies.

    You are right in that if you don't give them the ability to walk over you the UK will force a "Status Quo" peace in no time.
    Brycef
    Fighting battles one game at a time.

  20. #20
    Ask how many Divisions I have! InnocentIII's Avatar
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    Chapter Six: Dumb and Dumber

    Dewrix Lucky guess! Yeah, the Dutch were never a major concern in South America.

    brycef They don't appear to have access, and never had much in South America. I'd forgotten they had anything.

    Previously on "Last Tango" - the Dutch, hereinafter "Dumb", attacked me, hereinafter "Dumber", demanding a mid-Argentina state which they could not get to, due to the navy of the UK, hereinafter "Sauron". This war was stupid-on-stilts. Here we see the Dutch sailing a yacht and being chased by the UK sailing an armada.



    It was a short battle, netting the good guys the traditional 0.1 naval battle warscore and inspiring the classic film "Bambi vs Godzilla". And the UK went on to blockade the Dutch harbors, right? No. I'm not going to drag this war out for you. The UK left the Netherlands' home harbors alone the entire war. Apparently the British sailors fear Dutch Light. The British home army sat home and drank tea. The UK did occupy Dutch South America, and bits of Indonesia, and the war ended in a WP after eighteen months, costing me about 1.5 Infamy (because my infamy decreased hardly at all while at war), and a bunch of money, because I foolishly gave my men rations and real bullets for six months. Granted, I did far less than the UK, i.e. nothing whatsoever, but I'm not the 800lb gorilla here. I'm Argentina. To me the Dutch are large and far away.

    In the meantime, I developed a tentative plan to hit Rank 16 through Prestige, grab as much of Sokoto as I could (near the Life Rating 35 areas), and become a colonial power. So I switched to the prestige tree in Culture, grabbing Romanticism in June 1857 and setting Realism on a two year timer. At the time I was 20 points from Rank #16, so this seemed reasonable enough. However, when the war with the Dutch ended, I noticed that Chile had three Brigades, where they previously were more powerful than me, something like 15 to 11. So I move my armies into position. Just before I DoW I notice that Chile has recruited a fourth brigade. So I have 33,000 troops against 12,000, some of whom are fresh recruits. Please recall the title of this chapter, however. I think first of your amusement, dear reader, so I had to make this interesting.

    I DoW Chile, demanding Los Rios, as Vaya con Queso recommended. Why Chile? I can't fight Brazil (French Sphere and Ally), Peru is weak, Bolivia and Paraguay barely exist. So I want to knock Chile down to its capitol and one artic state before it presents a bigger threat. Plus, even with the 10 infamy this costs, it'll only be a few years before I can afford 8BB to snap up an unciv, and less than that to spend 4 on an unciv's state.

    Peru mobilized, and I think that is what threw me. My plan was to occupy Talca and then defend in mountains, as I could see the main Chilean armies arriving just a few days after me. However, what I either missed, or what popped in via mobilization, was that there were 3000 conscripts in Talca, so unless I defeated them in under a week, I would be attacking into mountains. I would also be assigning troops to occupy Chile before I killed their armies. This seemed okay when it was 33,000 to 9,000, but was in fact dumber even then. So, here is how the battles went. Attacking into mountains ftl



    Maybe it's not so bad? (2/25)



    Nah, it's bad (2/27)



    Well, I wasn't defending Talca, but I was committed (already took the screenshot!), and I did outnumber my foe. When things started to go south (I suspected that I lagged behind Chile in tech), I "retreated" a fairly useless part of my army into Chile's capitol.



    Nine days later, my crappy play in this game earns me an award for Realism. Thanks, guys!



    Ten days after that, March 22, I "won" the battle. Note that my losses were nearly double my enemy's. I gain 0.75 prestige, proving that world opinion is based on nonsense.



    I did win in Valparaiso, from the look of things vaporizing a small Chilean force.



    I then lost in Cauquenos to the army I had "defeated" barely a month before. See those 2000 men in Chillan? Don't get attached to them. Apparently I don't read my own AAR about what a mistake it is to worry about occupying enemy territory before the enemy troops are all dead.



    On May 29 my troops in Chillan bite the dust, as I choose to fight for Valparaiso instead. On June 4 I won in Valparaiso (the army I sent there had not arrived, but would have been too late to Chillan anyway). I set a new record, losing 4000 men in my victory while killing 1750 enemy. I race to Cauquenes, figuring that I'd won, I must be in better shape, and I'll win the next fight, right?



    On June 17, I won control of Copapio, a huge warscore boost (20). I won Cauquenes, losing 2300 while killing 2000. Let it ride? No, I settled in. On July 3 I took control of the Chilean capitol, on August 20 I added Valparaiso. I now had a warscore of 32 (needing 88), Copapio 20; Santiago 7.5; Valparaiso 5. I was net -0.2 from battles. Here is the status on October 4.



    As you can see, my troops have recovered, and the enemy is content to occupy two provinces which cannot be worth much. I lost control of San Rafael on October 31, and Nuquein the next day. The Chilean occupying forces then moved against me. Unfortunately, they had also recovered, and Chile had lost fewer men than I had. I fed troops into Santiago against what I thought (still think) were conscripts, now back up to 7500 men. Worse yet, the Chileans had recruited 3000 more infantry, and now 15,000 fresh Professional Army troops moved against me in Chillan.



    I completed the occupation of Vin Del Mar and fed those troops into the battle in Santiago.



    You know, you can see here why it's so tempting to occupy provinces during the fighting. I take Talca, and on the map it looks like I'm doing pretty well. The truth is that if I'd killed the enemy, I'd just speed up the game clock and the war would be over in under a minute. The battle for Santiago begins to look not so good. Chile's general's +3 to Attack more overcomes my +2 bonus for defending in mountains, and my General is better suited to attack, and adds nothing.



    And then I lost.



    Impressive defeat, too. I lost 4000 men, Chile lost 800. I lost nearly all my cavalry. I did not notice it then, but I think this shows that I am meaningfully behind Chile in military tech. I had more troops, some cavalry, and even with their superior general, Chile should have been only roughly equal to me. I have all first tier techs and the second tech in Tactics. Everything now hinges on the battle in Chillan, which looks remarkably like the battle in Santiago. The Chilean general with +3 Attack overcomes my defensive bonus, and my general is + to Attack but has +0 Defense.



    Ideally at this point I'd be able extricate some low-Org armies and surround my foe, forcing surrender if I win. I know that this force is Chile's professional army. If I could eliminate that, I could handle the three remaining brigades of farmers. If the main Chilean Army escapes, and I have to keep chasing them down, and if they refresh in their home territory more quickly than I do chasing them in enemy territory, I could still lose this war. As I write this I do not know how it ends.
    I follow Paradox on Twitter and have Johan's photo on my phone for Twitter messages. I also follow the Pope. When the Pontiff tweets, I see the picture and lately I wonder "yes, but is Johan speaking ex cathedra?"
    Check out my Vicky2 AAR: Last Tango in 1.3 - An Argentine AAR Favorite Gameplay AAR, Vicky1/2 2011 (Round 3) - Completed
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