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Thread: Beginner needs strategic advice.

  1. #1
    Corporal Laoch's Avatar
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    Beginner needs strategic advice.

    Hello all,

    I've recently purchased EU3 Complete. Loved it so much I bought HTTT and DW the next day. I'm not doing too badly overall in my second ever game. It's a multiplayer with my friend where I am playing Holland and he Brandenburg. I've managed to follow the Holland guide on the wiki. It is tough going, but I've managed to beat Burgendy without a single battle as France destroyed their army in a war. I swooped in and declared war to steal Antwerpen and Vlaanderen. I've managed to diplo-annex Utrect and defeated/annexed Barbrant's territory and the same with Friesland. It's now 1491, I have all the main routes and essential islands prepared for Colonisation. Maderia, Greenland, Canaries, Cape Verde, The Azores all under my control. They become Cores in 1495.

    So far it's mostly going to plan, but since it's only my second game I'm actually very confused about where I go from here and I'm facing a few problems.

    1.) I want to be a colonial power with strong trade. When I get my core in the Azores in 1495 should I go out land grabbing here, there and everywhere? The wiki seems to suggest vast expansion. Is this the right approach or should I only colonise certain areas? I read that the more provinces you have the longer it takes to research.

    2.) I was a bit of a badboy and took Friesland and Utrect without a core. The Emperor demanded Utrect get released, but since I diplo-annexed it and that took ages I told him get stuffed. Now Utrect has suffered the penalties for that being unlawful territory. It has been like that for 20 years. Does that go away when I gain it as a core?

    3.) France has the mission to gain a core in Vlaanderen. There is no way I can stand up to them. They have 60k on the field and 160k in reserve. I have 20k on the field and 36k in reserve. How can I stop them? Just play nice? Every time I get them anywhere near 0 it suddenly drops to -150 or something like that. My friend has become Holy Roman Emperor so maybe some joint effort to take France on, defeat them and with a war score of 100% force them to release most of the nations they have engulfed? Will colonies provide me extra manpower?

    4.) Portugal and myself are the only nation with QFTNW. They are in range of the Caribbean and Brazil. They have been in range of Africa for a while, but sent nobody. Will the rapidly expand soon? Do I have time to wait for the reformation and colonise after that? Lead me to my next question...

    5.) How quickly can I trigger the reformation? I want to become reformed for obvious reasons, but can't wait for too long otherwise Portugal will grab key territory in South America. Is it worth waiting for the reformation before colonising? I assume it's a headache to convert with a lot of territory abroad. I'm also very innovative which could harm my attempts to convert.

    6.) France has massive inflation and Portugal has debts/loans it will not be able to repay. Will this have an impact on the game? I know in nearly all other strategies the AI is given a helping hand. Will Portugal go bankrupt? France's inflation hurt them? What happens if a major nation does go bankrupt?

    7.) I was reading in another thread (been lurking the forum and wiki for a few weeks) about battles. He was losing battles he ought to be winning and one suggestion was the land he was fighting in could not support his large force. What was meant by this and how can I find out how much a province can support.

    8.) In my game Granada is an established nation on the Iberian Peninsula. Loved to know how that happened. Castille was wiped out in 30 years. Not a question, but thought I'd share.


    Thanks for taking the time to read this. Look forward to your advice. I'm playing DW 5.1 with everything on normal. I may update this thread again as I'm sure my friend has many questions as well.

  2. #2
    I think you should restart, but your choice.

    When I play Holland/Netherlands I usually am in Asia by around 1416-18 (getting a core there early is good).

    You will want to seize the important centers of trade and make vassals (or keep the land if you prefer that...what's good anyway)

    Getting Kutch, Malacca etc is good, Chinas cot as well. Raze Bihar and Kutch and create new coastal cots. If their value is over 800 when you are growing, create new cots is places like Macau, Taiwan and Okinawa. Places you can easily control (Unless you want to keep all those chinaware, spice etc provinces to yourself...could be good if you have a good national trade income modifier)

  3. #3
    Major Ryasyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Laoch View Post
    Hello all,

    So far it's mostly going to plan, but since it's only my second game I'm actually very confused about where I go from here and I'm facing a few problems.

    1.) I want to be a colonial power with strong trade. When I get my core in the Azores in 1495 should I go out land grabbing here, there and everywhere? The wiki seems to suggest vast expansion. Is this the right approach or should I only colonise certain areas? I read that the more provinces you have the longer it takes to research.

    2.) I was a bit of a badboy and took Friesland and Utrect without a core. The Emperor demanded Utrect get released, but since I diplo-annexed it and that took ages I told him get stuffed. Now Utrect has suffered the penalties for that being unlawful territory. It has been like that for 20 years. Does that go away when I gain it as a core?

    3.) France has the mission to gain a core in Vlaanderen. There is no way I can stand up to them. They have 60k on the field and 160k in reserve. I have 20k on the field and 36k in reserve. How can I stop them? Just play nice? Every time I get them anywhere near 0 it suddenly drops to -150 or something like that. My friend has become Holy Roman Emperor so maybe some joint effort to take France on, defeat them and with a war score of 100% force them to release most of the nations they have engulfed? Will colonies provide me extra manpower?

    4.) Portugal and myself are the only nation with QFTNW. They are in range of the Caribbean and Brazil. They have been in range of Africa for a while, but sent nobody. Will the rapidly expand soon? Do I have time to wait for the reformation and colonise after that? Lead me to my next question...

    5.) How quickly can I trigger the reformation? I want to become reformed for obvious reasons, but can't wait for too long otherwise Portugal will grab key territory in South America. Is it worth waiting for the reformation before colonising? I assume it's a headache to convert with a lot of territory abroad. I'm also very innovative which could harm my attempts to convert.

    6.) France has massive inflation and Portugal has debts/loans it will not be able to repay. Will this have an impact on the game? I know in nearly all other strategies the AI is given a helping hand. Will Portugal go bankrupt? France's inflation hurt them? What happens if a major nation does go bankrupt?

    7.) I was reading in another thread (been lurking the forum and wiki for a few weeks) about battles. He was losing battles he ought to be winning and one suggestion was the land he was fighting in could not support his large force. What was meant by this and how can I find out how much a province can support.

    8.) In my game Granada is an established nation on the Iberian Peninsula. Loved to know how that happened. Castille was wiped out in 30 years. Not a question, but thought I'd share.


    Thanks for taking the time to read this. Look forward to your advice. I'm playing DW 5.1 with everything on normal. I may update this thread again as I'm sure my friend has many questions as well.
    1: if you wanna go colonial hit all of north america and south america. Its worth it.

    2: yes it will. Just sit on it

    3: How far ahead of france are you in tech? Try to get to land 16 or 17 (I forget which) that will make frances doomstax of Cav almost useless.

    4: It depends. I would make sure they are busy elsewhere. Or even better just take thier colonial possesions when you can

    5: it will happen sometimes after 1500, you needa theologian. then you will have a good chance to be Protestant or Reformed

    6: Its going bankrupt soon. Let it. This means it will implode like a Large star. As Holland/Netherlands you want this.

    7: all land suffers attriton. Mountains are the worst, followed by hills, then rivered provences. Winters also affect the Attrition valu. See term Russian Winter.

    8: It happens. Granada sometimes allies up with Portugal and Aragon, and Castille day 1 DOW's it. So it gets raped and Granada expands


    Hope this helped

  4. #4
    I don't think Granada can actually ally Portugal/Aragon, but sometimes they just coordinate a gank by coincidence. In addition, Granada frequently is released if Castille collapses from mass revolts.

  5. #5
    I have a screenshot somewhere where Granada ate Castille. I was like "Dubbya tee eff?" And they was like "Yeah, that just happened. Come at me bro!"

  6. #6
    Major Ryasyr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pewt View Post
    I don't think Granada can actually ally Portugal/Aragon, but sometimes they just coordinate a gank by coincidence. In addition, Granada frequently is released if Castille collapses from mass revolts.
    Ive seen the AI granada do it a few times. Ive personally pulled it off a few times

  7. #7
    Grand Prolonger of Autumn 大長秋 Lord Canterbury's Avatar
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    One of the tricks you can use to try to handle France is to use attrition to your advantage. If he has large stacks (20Kish) they'll start to have troops die (of illness etc) if they are in your territory. You can try to use that to weaken him and then pick your battles.

    The other thing that can topple large nations is instability, as they take ages to recover it (just as they take ages to research new tech). If France gets into a long war keep an eye on thier stability and on the revolt risk in provinces. You can pick a time to enter a war against them which can extend their war exhaustion and potentially cuase rebels to pop up all over the place (which you could help out with a few spies).... cue the aforementioned starlike implosion.
    "Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd." - Voltaire.
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  8. #8
    Lt. General The Blood Eagle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ryasyr View Post

    3: How far ahead of france are you in tech? Try to get to land 16 or 17 (I forget which) that will make frances doomstax of Cav almost useless.
    18, you want 18. 18 over 17 is a humongous disparity from the tactics bonus.
    “My own view is that this planet is used as a penal colony, lunatic asylum and dumping ground by a superior civilization, to get rid of the undesirable and unfit. I can't prove it, but you can't disprove it either.” - Christopher Hitchens

  9. #9
    Another thing you can do to hold off France, or at least give a warning that they are on the way, is to give them military access. If they accept and then attack without breaking it they take -5 stability which the ai will almost never do. When they break the agreement you can try to do it again (unlikely) or at least know you have a matter of weeks to ramp everything up because they are coming for you. Also, as long as the emperor is strong and unoccupied and you are an HRE member France will be reluctant to attack just for a mission.

    As for colonization, there are different approaches you can take. Some recommend grabbing as much of the Caribbean as you can grab because of the relatively good tax values plus excellent trade goods. The down side is it is much harder to defend without a top-notch navy plus a number of transports. Alternatively you can grab swathes of North and/or South America (or India/China if you'd rather head that direction) and have an easier to defend territory that includes some less valuable provinces. The NA/SA approaches have the benefit of allowing for an inland CoT instead of coastal which is much easier to dominate trade in, particularly if you have province spreading slowed down.

    As long as an ai nation is at war they are unlikely to send colonists. Being at war and nearly bankrupt will reduce that chance near 0. The Protestant reformation can start any time after 1495, since you DON'T want this to happen in your land you want to avoid theologians. 10 years after the Protestant reform event the Reformation branches out event is enabled. Since you want this one you need to hire a theologian, not have divine supremacy, and not have unam sanctum. Lowering relations with the Papal States increases your likelyhood of triggering it (<-150 for maximum effect), also innovative sliders (-4/-5 to maximize), humanist tolerance NI, and an active revolt. Being a heretic government as well gives a substantial boost to the chance of triggering it.

  10. #10
    Captain cotwell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Chronicler View Post
    I think you should restart, but your choice.

    When I play Holland/Netherlands I usually am in Asia by around 1416-18 (getting a core there early is good).

    You will want to seize the important centers of trade and make vassals (or keep the land if you prefer that...what's good anyway)

    Getting Kutch, Malacca etc is good, Chinas cot as well. Raze Bihar and Kutch and create new coastal cots. If their value is over 800 when you are growing, create new cots is places like Macau, Taiwan and Okinawa. Places you can easily control (Unless you want to keep all those chinaware, spice etc provinces to yourself...could be good if you have a good national trade income modifier)
    How are you managing that so early? Do you put everything into Naval tech? How do you get the range? And the explorer?

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by cotwell View Post
    How are you managing that so early? Do you put everything into Naval tech? How do you get the range? And the explorer?
    No, I meant I am there seizing provinces that early, then 50 years later they core and I can colonize in the 1465-70s (ofc I colonize in americas etc first anyhow...but I meant seizing important ground)

    And it's very easy as Holland early to make enough gold (+18 trade tech advisor) to get trade 7 early. Think the earliest I ever done it is 1412 (and I never sold Zeeland to reduce my tech cost, which would probably enable someone to do it even earlier).

  12. #12
    Banned Iwanow's Avatar
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    How to get trade tech early :
    Hire trade tech advisor(treasuer) - it is obvious - give much to trade tech investment and can even get an event to double it.
    Hire trade chance advisor(trader) - increse your trade chances, and give +500 to trade investment thru event. A thing worth to take.
    Hire trade effenciency advisor(collector i think) - increase your trade effenciency by 5-6% and can give an event to increase it even by next 5%. This increase your income by great part. 11% TE added to ussualy about 20-30 TE means increase by 1/3 or 1/4 the income which is quite big. Of course you should also take national trade policy, to get another 10%, so you get faster investment. Then, when you reach trade tech 7 you just swap NI to QFTNW, and colonize like crazy. Best would be if you would be admin republic(+10 TE... oh yeah!)

  13. #13
    Captain cotwell's Avatar
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    I didn't realize you had that much of tech advantage as a small nation - very cool.

    @Chronicler: What I was really wondering: don't you need naval range (or something) so your ships don't die on the way East? How do you manage that part of it? I'd love to play a Holland RP game.
    Last edited by cotwell; 04-02-2012 at 19:46.

  14. #14
    Banned Iwanow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cotwell View Post
    I didn't realize you had that much of tech advantage as a small nation - very cool.

    @Chronicler: What I was really wondering: don't you need naval range (or something) so your ships don't die on the way East? How do you manage that part of it? I'd love to play a Holland RP game.
    Well i think just you need to have good naval tradition + good cultural tradition, and then, you should be able to hire good naval reformer, and investing in naval until you reach 9th naval tech. I dunno if other advisors give thing such as trader does, but you can check eu3 wiki.

  15. #15
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    Colonize the Carribbean. Never colonize Canada, except the far south unless for RP.
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  16. #16
    Banned Iwanow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gallenstein View Post
    Colonize the Carribbean. Never colonize Canada, except the far south unless for RP.
    LOL, furs LOL. LOL Iron LOL. LOL cooper LOL...

    EDIT : Other than that - naval supplies, cause they price can grow high if you got big fleet. Those are reason to colonize canada.

    EDIT#2: I also add here : Military reform Event, which needs your leader, to have military at least 8(and have at least -3 innovate, but anyway if you got small country it pays to be so innovate). It helps if you got naval and land reformer, so after you reach trade 7, you should take both. Also then, you can take navigator, to increase your colonial range.
    Last edited by Iwanow; 04-02-2012 at 21:11.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by cotwell View Post
    I didn't realize you had that much of tech advantage as a small nation - very cool.

    @Chronicler: What I was really wondering: don't you need naval range (or something) so your ships don't die on the way East? How do you manage that part of it? I'd love to play a Holland RP game.
    It's very easy to get military access from nations along the way, like Kongo, Mutapa etc. I just hide in their ports and let my ships repair (I send 1 ship at the time, and a fleet to follow, and then I exchange the ships and go with another one when the last one used repairs itself.).
    Last edited by Chronicler; 05-02-2012 at 01:10.

  18. #18
    Captain cotwell's Avatar
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    Ahhh, of course. D'ohh.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Iwanow View Post
    LOL cooper LOL....
    ...hey, I'm a cooper's apprentice.

    Edit - you NEED to change your picture back, it doesn't seem like you without the mustache and long hair.
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  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Blood Eagle View Post
    ...hey, I'm a cooper's apprentice.

    Edit - you NEED to change your picture back, it doesn't seem like you without the mustache and long hair.
    My aim is to be gandalf, but there is no gandalf, avatar here... Some time ago it was to be elf(when i was very young and very stiupid), but decided that istari is more awesome.

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