towerbooks3192

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I just saw a documentary on BBC knowledge about the history of Christianity or something about that and I was inspired to play as Byzantine. I know I only have 2 starting provinces ( I think it was Thrace and Moera or something like that). Byzantine would be my second country to be played since I only played as Castille since the beginning. I know that as a beginner it would be hard for me to adjust as Byzantine because it is harder compared to playing as Castille.

Any advice on what I could do in the beginning as Byzantine? more importantly I want someone to teach me about moving the sliders in favor of my situation because I am still confused about the sliders.
 

delra

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1. Declare war on Achea right away and annex it as well as reclaiming all your cores from Venice (Venetians have a weaker fleet than you on day one and it stays that way only for a short while). Make them release Naxos and Corfu so you can annex them too.
2. Build your own fleet, either handful of Carracks or a horde of Galleys, both work. Carracks are a bit harder to pull off - but also more long-term.
3. Wait for all the evil Turks to be in Turkey and block Bosphorus with your fleet.
4. Declare war on Ottomans and quickly remove Serbia and Bosnia out of the picture by occupying their territories and killing their army.
5. Either use nationalist rebels to get everything on your side back, or besiege it yourself.
6. When Ottos collapse financially go to the other side of Bosphorus, kill their army and take all provinces. Or grab Liberum Veto, train up 40 000 troops, get a good general and beat them in a fair fight if you are in a hurry.
7. In peace deal demand as much land in Asia Minor as you possibly can.
8. Repeat 5 and 10 years later until you have all your cores back from Ottos. Train superior Muslim units there.
9. Take all other cores of yours, including Cyprus, Rhodos and such. Take all "Turkish provinces" you can find.
10. Convert everything back to Orthodox and let it flip back to Greek culture. Become the most powerful country in the world.
11. Build a CoT in Thrace, take Unam Sanctam or whatever and conquer Italy before Italians skyrocket in tech and outpace you.
12. Follow missions if you still have any to grab Venice, Sicily and Italy.
13. Conquer Egypt and Persia.
14. To India - or whatever.
 

towerbooks3192

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1. Declare war on Achea right away and annex it as well as reclaiming all your cores from Venice (Venetians have a weaker fleet than you on day one and it stays that way only for a short while). Make them release Naxos and Corfu so you can annex them too.
2. Build your own fleet, either handful of Carracks or a horde of Galleys, both work. Carracks are a bit harder to pull off - but also more long-term.
3. Wait for all the evil Turks to be in Turkey and block Bosphorus with your fleet.
4. Declare war on Ottomans and quickly remove Serbia and Bosnia out of the picture by occupying their territories and killing their army.
5. Either use nationalist rebels to get everything on your side back, or besiege it yourself.
6. When Ottos collapse financially go to the other side of Bosphorus, kill their army and take all provinces. Or grab Liberum Veto, train up 40 000 troops, get a good general and beat them in a fair fight if you are in a hurry.
7. In peace deal demand as much land in Asia Minor as you possibly can.
8. Repeat 5 and 10 years later until you have all your cores back from Ottos. Train superior Muslim units there.
9. Take all other cores of yours, including Cyprus, Rhodos and such. Take all "Turkish provinces" you can find.
10. Convert everything back to Orthodox and let it flip back to Greek culture. Become the most powerful country in the world.
11. Build a CoT in Thrace, take Unam Sanctam or whatever and conquer Italy before Italians skyrocket in tech and outpace you.
12. Follow missions if you still have any to grab Venice, Sicily and Italy.
13. Conquer Egypt and Persia.
14. To India - or whatever.

Whoa, thats a handful. Could you guide me step by step,lets say I start with Achaea. Venice guarantees them. I could crush the Venetians on land but when reinforcements comes from Venezia. How will I let them release Corfu and Naxos?
 

DominusNovus

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Whoa, thats a handful. Could you guide me step by step,lets say I start with Achaea. Venice guarantees them. I could crush the Venetians on land but when reinforcements comes from Venezia. How will I let them release Corfu and Naxos?

Basically, there's 3 rules to the early byzantine game:
1) Blockade the straits and don't lose your navy
2) Pick your fights wisely, only attack those you think you can beat quickly
3) accept that you'll have to restart a few times to get the hang of it.

Once you've kicked the Ottomans out of Europe, you've got one of the easiest countries to play.
 

DanubianCossak

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Corfu and Naxos start as their vassals, Venice will start annexing them every 10 years. U can either let them do that (at a risk that Ottomans might beat u to it) or u can take some of their land, like Crete (irrc) and any other Venetian held land. Once u have enough war score u can make them "cancel" vassalisation of Corfu and Naxos and then u can grab both urself, or cause patriot rebelions etc.
 

A_Dane

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Yes, as Delra said, you're in a good position to take on Venice early game. Use it, as it will not remain as such. Attack Achea and bum rush the venetian positions in greece, take keep building fleet, and mint a little if you have to, you'll be able to deal with it later. Occupy as much land as possible and kill as many soldiers/ships as possible, as long as you're risking your army/fleet too much, as Delra also pointed out you need it later. Once you've gotten sufficient war score to demand Venices provinces & the relase of vassals.
This should be somewhat straight forward, and manageble, although a couple of retrys will probably be in order, and don't let the minting go too overboard.

Now the tricky part is beating the ottomans, so I urge you to make a save once you're satisfied with your war vs Venice. Now build up your army and fleet, and wait as Delra said til the ottomans are over in Asia Minor, and declare war. Fight it out, and reload from your earlier save if things go ugly and try again :)
Once the ottomans are dealt with, it's pretty much up to you, I'd advice you to stop minting though :p
 

towerbooks3192

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Basically, there's 3 rules to the early byzantine game:
1) Blockade the straits and don't lose your navy
2) Pick your fights wisely, only attack those you think you can beat quickly
3) accept that you'll have to restart a few times to get the hang of it.

Once you've kicked the Ottomans out of Europe, you've got one of the easiest countries to play.

How do I do a blockade?blockade or patrol?should I dettach my cogs away from my galleys? Is my 3000 starting units enough to do that?
 

Fishman786

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There are two ways to play Byzantines. One is, as mentioned above, to take out the Greek minors and the Venetians first, and then go for the Ottomans.

The other way is to set your siders to full mint, build a fleet of galleys (have 12 at least, ignore forcelimits), recruit a few more regiments of soldiers (ignore forcelimits again), block the straits and take the fight to the Ottomans right away. This is my preferred way of doing things, since the Ottomans are unlikely to remain distracted by the Timurids long enough for you to conquer Greece, and all the guarantees on the Greek minors can bring dangerous enemies like Castille, England or France in against you. You should be able to take all of the Ottoman European provinces except for their capital in this way, provided that you occupy Bosnia and Serbia too. The Ottomans will refuse peace for quite a while, so send as many stab-hitting peace offers as you can in order to break them. If you can, carry on even past -3 stability, since any hit past that will increase their revolt risk directly (I think). Whatever you do, don't accept any deals until the Ottomans are willing to give you all their European lands.
 

delra

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Going into more detail would be wrong, it all depends on luck and situation. If you don't grab Venice too early (I march there by land with my entire army), Ottomans will mass armies on the Greek side and attack you, that's when you are screwed. If Ottomans annex Moldavia, Golden Horde, likely ally of Ottos will just stroll in with 60k to your lands and you are screwed too. If you don't build Carracks you need to be very careful snatching Rhodos cause Castille, Aragon and Portugal will come and sink your Galleys. Dangers are many, but the game on its own is fun - Byzantines can convert all Turks to Greek (switch to culture map mode, makes Greek area huge), have a ton of cores, great missions (core on Venice, cores on Sicily and Naples, pentarchy dismantling Papacy) and wonderful position.

I think you should conquer Italy and then the Balkans (if you even want them, I prefer to make a big Orthodox ally there like Serbia and sell them everything so they protect me on that flank, it's poor land in general and you only need it to prevent someone hostile from having it) before you go east, while Europe will be getting better in tech, Muslims will fall behind you quite fast. I the long run you can do them in either order - but it's definitely easier to send Azabs and Charge Cavalry to Italy against Man at Arms than send Eastern Hussar against Culverin and such.

In general, if you made a poll in here, I'd say Byzantines are the single favourite campaign of majority of players and I bet are also the most replayed campaign. Everyone does it slightly different but what I wrote worked for me dozens of times unless I was really unlucky somewhere on the way.

My last game after uniting my cores (which is fast and easy, no infamy, easy CBs, easy targets too besides Ottos), converting them to Orthodox and flipping to Greek culture, I annexed everything Lombard, then used missions to grab Sicily, Naples and Rome too. I used a mission to vassalize Serbia, then took whole Hungary and everything else in the Balkans and sold to them. Gave me a powerful ally with a horde of cavalry guarding my flank there from Germans, Poles and everyone else. Then I used Georgia as a vassal to protect me from GH flanking me in the north and pushed for Egypt and Persia. Through Persia I reached India, the promised land. :) Through Egypt I reached Marocco. I finished by taking Spain and France and ended my game in the 16th century with united Roman and Alexander's empires. It was all pretty much Holy War with a bit of Imperialism in the end. I slowed down at some point and didn't really colonize or hit colonials so WC was out of picture. But I could have Asia, Africa and Europe if I wanted for 1820.
 

towerbooks3192

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I am still planning on how I am going to proceed. Byzantine is really interesting. My last "experiment game" I followed your tips. Moved my troops and declared war while blockading and managed to reinforce my starting fleet with some carracks enough to hold the venetians but my problem is their troops on the main territories of Venice. Aquilea already had peace with me and I managed to annex Achaea.

I tried once to wage war against Candar and Trezbond(or something). I really need help!!
 

delra

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I just pull all my armies together, get access from Epirus -> Zeta/Ragusa/Serbia/whatever -> Hungary -> Aquilea/Austria and reach them by land with a much bigger stack led by my current emperor. I beat them in Venice when my fleet is blockading their possibility of retreat and their whole army disappears. One assault later and I get Athens, Crete and possibly Albania too back from them, and can come home plot Ottoman downfall.

This is the quick way. And you really need to be quick, Ottos are really breathing down your neck at this stage. It's race pretty much to kill Venice in the short window of time it takes Ottomans to beat Timurids and move on to beating you.
 

elbasto

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Before you unpause the game, set your minting to 100%, start building a galley in Thrace and an army in Greece (1 cav 2 inf.) and move towards centralization. If you get a revolt in stead of a stability hit, restart.

Once you achieve this, keep on a galley in the build queue in Thrace and keep a look of the Ottoman forces in Greece. As soon as the cross the strait to fight the Timurids and your new 3 regiments army is in Thrace, declare Reconquest war on the Ottomans. If Wallachia does not honour the call, restart/reload.

Once you achieve this, you should have around 9 galleys and 3 cogs. Leave them on port. Start moving your armies to Ottoman held Greece and start sieging two or three provinces a time. Send one infantry regiment to the province to your north in order to deprive Wallachia from that siege. Do not set siege the Ottoman capital, that's where their fleet, if you siege it, their fleet will sail out, giving their army enough time to leave Asia.

Always keep a galley in the build queue until you reach three or four above the Ottoman fleet.

Keep an eye for Bosnian/Serbian armies. Wallachia should take care of them. Your aims should be to siege the Ottoman, Bosnian and Serbian lands and at the same time, destroy the remaining/new armies in Europe.

Take a look at the Ottoman armies trying to move from Asia to Europe. When they are about to cross over, order your entire fleet to sail towards the Bosporus strait and then back into the port immediately (use SHIFT+Click to place this orders). You may order them to patrol, but your fleet risks getting intercepted.

Once you have around above 13 galleys, stop building them and set them to patrol the straits (Bosporus/Thrace). At this stage, you can already siege the Ottoman capital.

Eventually you should have occupied all of Ottoman Greece, Bosnia and Serbia. If Wallachia occupied any province, place one regiment of infantry in this province since they will eventually bail out signing a white peace.

You should also be able to sink their fleet eventually.

Once you did that wait a little bit. You have three cogs and two 3k armies. While they have all of their armies trying to cross the straits, you can sail an army to their rear and start sieging. If they come after you, load your armies to your cogs and get the hell out of there.

The Ottomans will eventually go bankrupt. At this stage, make a couple of raids assaulting their forts. Once you've taken a couple of province in Asia, you should be able to sue for peace and take all of Greece (except for their capital) and one province in Asia.

Build up your armies and navy to match your capacity.

After you've done this, take a look at the Christian holders of your core provinces (Achea, Corfu, Rhodes, Cyprus and Trezibond). If you can, you should be able to take at least one of them.

After your truce with the Ottos is over, Dow them again. If you are playing Heir to the Throne, make sure to DoW to reconquer them at the same time that you DoW other muslim countries that are allied to/guarantee them. If you are using the latest patch, you should be able to annex them.

Once you've reconquered all the muslim held territories that you had a core on, you'll be one of the most powerful countries around with no infamy at all. Invade Venice and take the provinces in which you don't have a core on, in order to use some infamy. After you've destroyed their armies, try funding patriots in the remaining areas of Greece that are still held by Venice and in which you have cores on. They will defect to you, eventually. If you can, ask Hugary and Aquilea for military access in order to occupy Terviso and "persuade" them.

Focus your budget sliders to get +3 stability and government tech 4. At first, at least, take the National Bank Idea in order to get rid of your the inflation you got building your navy and supporting your army.

Mid term goals (before 1500) should be:
- Build a Centre of Trade in Thrace
- Take over Judea
- Take over southern Italy and up to Rome taking advantage of some GREAT missions that Byzantium has
- Take over Mecca
- Trigger the "pentarchy" (own Judea, Rome, Thrace, Aleppo and Alexandria and convert them to the orthodox faith)

Before 1550 you should be westernized. After you do this, go east as much as you can before 1650. In 1650 you'll lose the "Holy war" causus beli, making conquering non Christian lands very cheap. By that time, once market places have been built in most of western Europe, your spice provinces in Arabia will yield a lot of money and you will probably be technologically on par with most OPM western European nations.

Let us know how did it work.

Good luck!



EDIT: Here's an example of a game I had by 1604 (notice the Italian Peninsula). By 1650 India was also conquered as well as South Africa. A realistic goal would be to keep every European power west of South Africa, colonizing by yourself the Dutch East Indies, Australia, Taiwan, the Indian Ocean islands (including Madagascar) and the Philippines. These would be you only "overseas" provinces as the rest of your empire (including South African territories) should be connected to your capital by land.

EU3_MAP_BYZ_1604.2.1_1.jpg
 
Last edited:

delra

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Before you unpause the game, set your minting to 100%

Don't do this. :)
 

Blastaz

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Delra's strategy is an advanced gambit, for the Byzantines who are already a fairly tricky start. If you are not that confident at the game it is probably better to square up to the Ottomans first with a 14 galley fleet and help the Timurids crush them during the starting war. If you can build a bigger fleet than the ottos and leave it in the sea of marmara they can't send any troops across the straits. Just build infantry for your army, they are cheaper and allow you to siege more provinces. If you can catch their army on the eastern side fighting Timur then you can occupy everything on the western side. hold on to it for a few years and war exaustion and lack of money should force the ottomans to the negotiating table. It is possible to get every single ottoman province in the balkans, bar their capital, in one war for 0 infamy.

Ultimatly it is situational based on how well that first war with the Timurids goes, how many allies the greek minors get and a few other things.

For slider moves you should set them up to Westernise. Go Centralised first, all the way to the limit for empire -3, then go Innovative later on again to -3. When you have westernised you need to westernise your military this requires going to -5 centralisation. This is your priority and all moves should be in this direction for the first hundred years or so.

For the other sliders you want to go Free subjects as much as possible. I find aristocracy is good to as if you max it out all your generals get an extra point of shock. After that go full quality. It may be worth going land for cheaper troops or naval if you go colonial for extra tarrif income. i leave offensive/defensive in the middle as offensive causes you to have nasty fort busting events. Ignore the trade slider as trade won't be too big a priority as the Byzzies, mercantlism may be better as you will probably have high infamy and capture quite a lot of your own cots.

The Byzantines are quite hard to get going, but once you get your lucky break you snowball pretty fast into a powerful game due to all those cores and the holy war CB. Basically play a few games, make a few mistakes and eventually you should get lucky, and get better!

Tech wise you should put all your research into one thing at a time. Gov 4 (NI), Land 6(new cav unit), Production 9 (workshops this is where you start making money) It may be worth skipping out land 6 and going straight for production 9.

For your national idea take Church attendance duty, then take the cultural decision Guilded Iconography which requires it (this gives you presteige and Cultural Tradition at the cost of a tax penalty, the CT allows you to hire lots of 5-6 star advisors and is more than worth the tax penalty). Once you have taken that Decision switch your NI for military drill, as this is the best early combat idea you can get and you will be fighting a lot.

About minting, I would recomend about 0.15% minting untill you can afford not to. By the time you have workshops you really shouldn't be minting at all. 5% inflation is good. 10% just about acceptable. 3% is entirely possible. But you should hire a good master of mint to bring it down as quickly as possible. The only time you should ever mint 100% of your income is when you have just researched a new building that you really want to build everywhere (workshops, constables are both worth doing this for if necessary)

for later game play see http://forum.paradoxplaza.com/forum...1399-start&p=11837745&viewfull=1#post11837745

I really should copy and save this for the number of times it comes up :)
 
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Fishman786

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Maginor

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There is no reason to mint with the Byzantines at all, but you have to play very technically. I usually take all the non-turkish provinces in Greece before I take on the ottomans. You can actually out-fleet the venetians pretty easily in the early game if you only build galleys. Then you can trap their main army in Venice, kill all their other (almost always small) garrisons in their other provinces and siege them. You will get most provinces in Greece this way. France and Castille may join one of the wars, but they will usually not be able to send too much against you, especially France, who are dealing with the British at that time, and have a tiny fleet. Just avoid the Castilean fleet and pick off the tiny sieging armies they unload at you. They will usually agree to a peace deal for a small sum of money after a while. When you finally deal with the Ottomans, you should use the strategy of blocking the Bosphorus as said above. Their European vassals may prove to be a problem, so if you can get an alliance with Hungary and get them to join the war, that will help a lot in keeping those busy.

Attached is a picture of my end state. Followed pretty much the same idea as ebasto, but I should probably have got land connection to India.

Edit: I didn't read delras post before mine, but I see it says basically the same thing. Well, I agree. I find this strategy much more sophisticated, and it pays off better in the long run. You should try to beat your enemies with as few soldiers as possible, and avoid any engagement where you may lose a significant amount of soldiers.
 

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Last edited:

delra

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My strategy is a gambit all right - but at least it doesn't require you to spend 100 years afterwards fighting down inflation while you could spend them minting at a huge scale and for much more net profit in gold (1% inflation early on is a few hundred gold, 1% inflation after you reunite is a few thousand). What you grab from Venice (along with Naxos, Epirus, Corfu and maybe Albania) turns out to be exactly what you need to beat Ottos without minting. I did that more than a dozen times by now.

I know you can do it with inflation just like with any other minor, but you don't need to, Byzantines aren't Yaroslav, they have enough cores to be able to beat Venice and Ottos without going too hard into inflation. ;-) I still mint some, 0.1, 0.15-0.20 a year sometimes if Serbia and Bosnia are giving me a hard time. But not 100%, 100% is Ryukyu strategy, not Byzantine.

Just be swift and fast with Venice and you will be all right. Play it risky, save yourself a lot of cash later on. Try it. 100% minting is simply too desperate.

Tech wise you should put all your research into one thing at a time. Gov 4 (NI), Land 6(new cav unit), Production 9 (workshops this is where you start making money) It may be worth skipping out land 6 and going straight for production 9.

Don't do this either. Go Gov 4 for the first NI and straight to Production 9 for Workshops (this is when Byzantines get scary even for GH and HRE). Then Gov 11 for second and third NI (and further towards Universities if you chose to conquer Egypt and Persia before conquering Italy - which I think is a mistake, but you are free to make it if you prefer it that way...), then go all Land to build Weapon Manufactories in all the Steel and Copper provinces and modernize your armies. It's another gambit. :) But you can do with Muslim starting units until then, in east and west.

You don't need that new eastern cavalry unit because you can train whatever lvl6 Muslim cavalry Ottos picked for themselves now that they are so far ahead in tech (as of the last patch for HttT). Use their cores! Musellem Cavalry is better than Eastern Swarm. And if you conquer Tunisia you can train their Charge Cavalry which is even better than both of those....
 
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lordkestrel

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Full minting is useful for the early years, but you do need to watch out for the inflation. You don't have enough income to get much benefit out of a loan, although I've used the max loan -> navy -> bankrupt cycle to get 'free' ships too. It's a tricky thing to pull off when you're first starting, so full minting is probably the better way to get the funds needed at the start.