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Thread: How to Learn Victoria II?

  1. #1

    How to Learn Victoria II?

    Firstly, I would like to say that this is not only my first Victoria game, or even Paradox game, but grand strategy game in general!

    So far, I've "played" Belgium, Netherlands, Britain, and Japan. By that, I mean I've tested them a few years before getting a bit fatigued. I got my butt conquered by Belgium, and had a horrible defeat when I tried Netherlands (as revenge), so I said "screw it" and did Britain. (Yeah right, Belgium's an easy country to learn! They have a great starting point if NETHERLANDS doesn't eat you.)

    Britain was okay. I had en epic failure counting my infamy or something, because I got two containment wars declared on me; I started by eating 2/3rds of the Netherlands homeland (screw you Dutch!), and set short term goals of unifying South Africa, long term goals of polishing off Netherlands. Well, I annexed Oranje, at the cost of suffering horrible defeats in my land battle against France and China getting beaten down by Russia (Russia built up 8 War Score just by fighting China. WORTHLESS ALLY.)

    So, I ended up giving in, and watched with horror as my entire military disintegrated.

    Now, I'm playing Japan. It should be okay, if a bit slow. They have no major threats, but nor do they have a clear path of expansion or the ability to do so.

    Here's what I'm looking for: a good learner's nation. Here's the requirements:
    1. It must have a government in which I can build factories.
    2. It must be sort of safe, so as I don't have a second Belgium on my hands.
    3. I'd prefer Western....
    4. I'd prefer one with a good road for expansion. Belgium fails 1 and 2. Japan fails 1 and 3. I hear Sweden's pretty good.... Heck, I might just do the US.
    Lemont Elwood
    Founder of the Liberal International
    Founder of the Imperial Congress
    Founder of the New Crusader Army
    Knight and Fifth Seneschal of the Order of Southern Paradoxians
    Founder of the Order of the Anglos

  2. #2
    Field Marshal naggy's Avatar
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    US, France, Prussia.

  3. #3
    I'm so stupid. I forgot that HM Governments can just APPOINT a new political party if they don't like the old one....

    Well, I've been playing as France, now being capable of navigating menus competently. I've actually had an engrossing game, despite most of it being watching Infrastructure maps. I know that in Victoria II, you can only get things done if you set yourself goals, so I set goals of dusting off certain uncivs with an overall objective of seizing control of Northern Africa; my long-term goals are to try and take the Indian minors before Britain eats them, and build a great colonial empire something like the Roman one in shape.

    I've made protectorates out of Tunis and Algeria, which gave me so much infamy I really can't do much for a long time. Once I finish, I don't know what to do. I WANT Morocco, or to take that ugly strip of Spanish territory out of Algeria, but the Indian territories are probably more valuable, since I never have enough soldiers for my current brigade levels. I also have ambitions to reconquer Madagascar, but it will be troublesome shipping the soldiers over....

    I invested much time constructing naval bases in my colonies, and have, as I always do, developed a huge navy. I've consistently remained number 2, but not by any large margin, and hit a rough patch when I fell all the way down to number 4.

    In the area of great powers, Austria is actually doing pretty good. The Ottomans and Spanish fell to the Belgians (who not only smacked down the Netherlands but also took Gelderland with it) and Two Sicilies. I am allied with all of Italia. I sphered China, but I have realized just how tiresome dealing with spheres of influence is. Constant competition with Russia left a bad taste in my mouth (and delayed me), and then Britain jumps in. Ah well, at least I can take chunks out of it if it's not a sphereling.

    1836-1845: Conquered Tunis, Algeria, developing infrastructure.
    1840s Goals: Conquer Morocco or Spanish Africa. Or both.
    1850s Goals: Continue African expansion.
    1860s Goals: Begin Asian expansion.
    Lemont Elwood
    Founder of the Liberal International
    Founder of the Imperial Congress
    Founder of the New Crusader Army
    Knight and Fifth Seneschal of the Order of Southern Paradoxians
    Founder of the Order of the Anglos

  4. #4
    Mwahahahahaha s1234567890m's Avatar
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    Play Two siccilies
    NF Beurocrats first (until ~1.2% per state-you can check in population menu)
    NF clergy (until around 3% per state, over two boosts literacy gain)
    Research the culture techs that boost RP production
    Machine guns(1870) medicine (start) and one of the NF boosting ones around 1860 get them to start colonising.
    With medicine/the NF one you can colonise some provinces near ethiopia before 1870
    Max taxes(efficiency is only 20% early game)
    There is a lot of FF'ing to kill Badboy
    Military tactics(last column of the army tech screen) are super important for war

    i think that is the important stuff to get started
    Ignored: Nuril, videonfan, Pandi

  5. #5
    I've heard a lot of praise for Two Sicilies....

    I have an idea on how to ferry my troops around Africa easily. The importance of the Suez Canal becomes pretty obvious in this game, where canals prevent you from having to go through the pain of going all the way around an entire continent.

    Well, I can't build the canal for decades, due to the fact that the technologies required can't be researched for decades. But I can seize the canal in a war, build a Naval Base there, construct a new navy to station on the other side, and use it as a trade-off point to quickly transport my major armies (Northern France, Southern France, Algeria) into India, and vice versa.
    Lemont Elwood
    Founder of the Liberal International
    Founder of the Imperial Congress
    Founder of the New Crusader Army
    Knight and Fifth Seneschal of the Order of Southern Paradoxians
    Founder of the Order of the Anglos

  6. #6
    Minister of Everything Station's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lemont Elwood View Post
    Well, I can't build the canal for decades, due to the fact that the technologies required can't be researched for decades. But I can seize the canal in a war, build a Naval Base there, construct a new navy to station on the other side, and use it as a trade-off point to quickly transport my major armies (Northern France, Southern France, Algeria) into India, and vice versa.
    I believe that is the Dumyat region of Egypt. Invade them fairly early in the game before anyone else can get there and demand that as your concession, leave a few troops in case another power wants to attempt to take it and build a naval base on the Red Sea. Build some transports, wait for your infamy to go down and then get some profitable concessions (Yemen and Oman have some VERY profitable uh.... poppies).

  7. #7
    Recruit choomgng's Avatar
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    The United States definitely fits two, three, and four, but most likely will not fit your first condition in the first few decades unless you're able to get the Southern Democrats elected, and keep them there. The US starts out with such an advantage compared to other nations in North America that you'll outmatch anyone in the hemisphere, and be able to defend very well against those on the opposite ends of the Atlantic/Pacific. The UK can potentially pose a threat, but they're pretty easy to handle in a defensive war, and I imagine this would also help you understand attrition, the terrain modifiers, and things of that nature. You'll also have a lot of safe expansion opportunities in many different parts of the world.

    The Two Siciles would fit all four, although they aren't as potentially safe as the US would be. If another nation ends up uniting Italy, you could find yourself in a rather difficult situation; although this will also get you more familiar with the mechanics of diplomacy than a US game would. Prussia and Russia would also be safe choices to familiarize yourself with the mechanics of Victoria 2, although Russia's size has the potential to overwhelm a new player.
    Last edited by choomgng; 18-11-2011 at 00:51. Reason: accidentally said Germany instead of Prussia

  8. #8
    I recommend starting with a smaller nation, so you can really get a handle on the economy, which is the most important part of the game and not particularly intuitive. Spain and Sweden are both good choices (State Capitalism, so you can build factories, and decent natural resources). Spain will let you explore the colonial game, but Sweden has much better literary and therefore tech/promotion.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Station View Post
    I believe that is the Dumyat region of Egypt. Invade them fairly early in the game before anyone else can get there and demand that as your concession, leave a few troops in case another power wants to attempt to take it and build a naval base on the Red Sea. Build some transports, wait for your infamy to go down and then get some profitable concessions (Yemen and Oman have some VERY profitable uh.... poppies).
    Yep. Panama isn't very exciting, but Suez offers great potential.

    I. Do Not. Have Soldiers. I've maxed out military spending (my economy is a beast) and encouraged Soldier POPs, but beyond that, I don't have much else I can do. I know that Soldiers are what happens when your people get really poor and demote from Laborers and Farmers, but I'm not particularly interested in screwing with population statistics.... this is why I really want India, it's close and weak enough to take on, unlike that monster China, and it should swell my ranks.

    Both when I played as Netherlands and Britain, I noticed how so many soldiers come from the Asian colonies.

    I started out with huge room for expansion, but after building a gigantic army, my Soldier numbers fells like nothing, and natural death and POP Promotion withered it down to nothing! Oh, my three major armies can beat the crap out of any unciv, and a good number of Europeans, but if I go toe-to-toe with a Great Power, I stand a great chance of losing.

    My navy is huge, I always make huge navies (it's easy to afford as France, with my massive economy).

    I actually haven't done a single thing despite my State Capitalist appointed Legitimistes. I CAN build Factories, but haven't done so; my Capitalists are handling better than I could....

    What is an "FF"? I don't know how to speed up my Infamy decline, -0.1 per MONTH is nonsense....
    Lemont Elwood
    Founder of the Liberal International
    Founder of the Imperial Congress
    Founder of the New Crusader Army
    Knight and Fifth Seneschal of the Order of Southern Paradoxians
    Founder of the Order of the Anglos

  10. #10
    Lt. General Meanmanturbo's Avatar
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    Sweden really is nice and safe. They have huge (80%) literacy and decent RGOs, lots of lumber which tends to run out in late game for example. To get good promotion you need administrative efficiency. Early on industry is not that important, so you can spend the early part of the game using NFs on bureaucrats and clergy. 2% clergy gives you the maximum reaserch point gain from clergy. Just remember to put your administration slider down to 19% or so when you have 100% admin in your states or you will have an uncontrollable bloat of bureaucrats. State admin efficiency and literacy are really important for promotions.

    Also, the tech Nationalism and Imperialism will allow you establish protectorate on uncivs with 5 states or fewer instead of 1 state. That eases the BB penalty for grabing Uncivs at least.
    Last edited by Meanmanturbo; 18-11-2011 at 18:52.
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  11. #11
    Brazil is a good starting nation. You're a big fish in a small pond, so none of your neighbors will pose a threat to you (just be sure to keep France and the UK in good relations). You have an HM Govt so you can switch to the reactionary party that features state capitalism. You also have a lot of rich RGOs. The downsides is that you have a very small and uneducated populace for such a large nation, and all the jungle terrain makes it difficult to move troops through if you decide to be aggressive with your neighbors.

  12. #12
    Crap. I was doing so well, and then UK came to screw with my invasion of China. Then at least two other wars (one containment, one Prussian) throw everything to hell.
    Lemont Elwood
    Founder of the Liberal International
    Founder of the Imperial Congress
    Founder of the New Crusader Army
    Knight and Fifth Seneschal of the Order of Southern Paradoxians
    Founder of the Order of the Anglos

  13. #13
    Scandinavian scoundrel Alexanderband's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lemont Elwood View Post
    Crap. I was doing so well, and then UK came to screw with my invasion of China. Then at least two other wars (one containment, one Prussian) throw everything to hell.
    Be careful when invading countries with 'Friendly' relations to other Great Powers. You need to be prepared for the possible intervention. Similarly, don't break the infamy limit if you're not ready to take on the armies of the world.

    Sorry for being Captain Hindsight here, but it's pretty darn important.

  14. #14
    Lt. General Meanmanturbo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alexanderband View Post
    Be careful when invading countries with 'Friendly' relations to other Great Powers. You need to be prepared for the possible intervention. Similarly, don't break the infamy limit if you're not ready to take on the armies of the world.

    Sorry for being Captain Hindsight here, but it's pretty darn important.
    Yes, you need to use influence offensively. If another great power is friendly they always get a free cb. So make sure that you lower the influence of other in your intendend target. Note that you can not gain influence when you are at war with a country, so you might need a buffer so that another great power wont suddenly become firendly during a war.
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  15. #15
    Here's the thing: Britain was at war with China at the same time as me! That EVIL Victoria just wanted to mess with my plans. Russia ended up getting involved because of relations with China, but I don't know exactly how that worked out.

    Actually, I had China sphered and was waiting for Britain to take them out. I was doing competently until Britain tried messing with me. And I handled Britain! There was no way to defend Sindh, given that the UK Deathstacks are Indian, but they didn't try to touch Africa. In France, I beat them down and managed to ferry my troops across the strait before their navy pounded mine (which surprised me. I had a huge navy of heavy ships.) I was elated to occupy London, and initially held my ground, but eventually they drove me back.

    I started off demanding just Guangxi (there is no "Annex China" wargoal?), then expanded it to include Guangdong, and then Chouzhou. I was originally just doing Guangxi, since that was all I could afford infamy-wise, but after British intervention, I thought "screw this, I'm basically fighting a containment war already". In hindsight, I should have remembered that going over the containment war gets you gangbanged by EVERYBODY. And the funny thing is, I was too greedy. I knew I could take what I wanted, but I didn't consider could I take it under intense conditions. No, I couldn't. The British offered me Guangxi and later Guangdong, but every time a peace offer came in that looked attractive, I had already added another war goal that they didn't offer. It was a shame that I didn't just accept a failed war goal and take what they offered.

    On the European Front, I accept something like a single province (out of three that I wanted) and started fighting the Prussians and every little Germany trickling across my border. Then they brought in a deathstack. With low morale in le emperor, I just gave up for the night.

    MY WARS BY 1864
    Two Colonial Wars (Tunis, Algeria)
    The Great Egyptian War (Egypt - Dumyat, Palestine)
    The Sindh Expedition (Sindh)
    The Moroccan War (Morocco)
    World War I (EVERYBODY - Guangxi)

    MY MAJOR FRIENDS
    The Italies.
    The CSA.
    Ethiopia.
    Prussia.

    MY SPHERE OF INFLUENCE
    Ethiopia - Because I thought their invasion of Egypt was really cute.
    China - Because I wanted to win.
    Papal States - Like hell Two Sicilies is touching them!
    Travancore - I want to invade it, so I've got to get it out from under the British SoI.
    CSA - I'm going to work on them because I like them. I subsidized their independence war.
    Lemont Elwood
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  16. #16
    Lt. General Meanmanturbo's Avatar
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    There is a conquest cb for all uncivs, even above 5 states and Nationalism and Imperialism, including China...but it costs 20 infamy
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  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Meanmanturbo View Post
    Note that you can not gain influence when you are at war with a country, so you might need a buffer so that another great power wont suddenly become firendly during a war.
    Incorrect. You can gain influence with a country you're at war with, but you cannot take diplomatic actions on them that cost influence. The opposite is true for nations that you have a truce with - you can increase their opinion of you or add them to your sphere as long as you have influence, but you can't gain influence on them until the truce is cancelled.

  18. #18
    Lt. General Meanmanturbo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by docfrance View Post
    Incorrect. You can gain influence with a country you're at war with, but you cannot take diplomatic actions on them that cost influence. The opposite is true for nations that you have a truce with - you can increase their opinion of you or add them to your sphere as long as you have influence, but you can't gain influence on them until the truce is cancelled.
    Ah, well, the end result is still the same. You cant do anything about other nations becoming friendly and joining in during the war_D
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  19. #19
    Field Marshal naggy's Avatar
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    You can use influence to drop their relations, then ban their embassy to keep them down for a full year.

  20. #20
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    Two Sicilies is the perfect nation with which to learn Vic2 (after going through the tutorials). It's a safe and comfortable secondary power with a state capitalism party in power and respectable literacy to start with. As long as you don't exceed your infamy limit or SP doesn't form Italy, you should be free to experiment to your heart's content. Just don't expect to be able to go toe to toe with the great powers.

    But I see you're already trying France. Just remember to go easy on the conquests. It takes about a year to burn off an infamy point, and that's if you're at peace...
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