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Lofman

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Between A Rock and a Hard Place
Probably not the most original title, but it sure beats something like CyrenaicAAR

Greetings to you all. It has been some time but I felt it might be time for a new AAR. And I will be playing as the grand and mighty country of Cyrenaica. No mods. Starting in 490 AUC. Not with the latest beta patch but the one before it. So no cascading alliances nor CTDs everytime a councillor need to be replaced, but we do get everyone looking dead in events and such. Do I have any goals? Well survival and hopefully, some day, expansion.


Well, let us take a look at Cyrenaica. Mighty might have been overstating its power earlier. Three provinces. Decent ones admittedly, but my neighbours are slightly more powerful to say the least. To the east we have mighty Egypt, allied with Sparta (not the most impressive ally) and currently at war with Macedonia. To the west we have Carthage, currently fighting Rome. This does somewhat limit our ability to expand. The fact that we don't have any wood doesn't really help either, but that is what trade is for. We do have spices in our coastal provinces and iron in the inland, so at the very least we will have heavy infantry.

Our king is Magas, halfbrother to king Ptolemy of Egypt and married to Apama, daughter to king Antiochus of the Seleucid Empire. The Seleucids are our allies, which is good as Ptolemy isn't very fond of the fact we are independent. Egypt does in fact quickly get a mission to conquer us, truly great. The Seleucids quickly attacks Pergamon, and we have no reason to abandon our allies. It is a poorly fought war by the Seleucids, and since we have no navy there isn't really anything we can do about it.

As Magas only have a daughter (Berenice) the councillors can't really agree on who should be the heir, but that is sorted out by slowly replacing some of the less competent councillors, as well as the current heir as he is very much unsuited for the job and no one likes him anyway. Quickly the risk of civil war decrease as there is a decent candidate most are happy with. Egypt wins their war against Macedonia conquering Euboea (and then promptly guarantees our independence, too bad it won't affect their ability to attack us), while the Seleucids still struggle against Pergamon, although in the end they manage to turn things around and after almost four years of war Pergamon is conquered by the Seleucids. I am truly impressed by our allies.

I start to plan what buildings to construct first, walls or irrigation, while better defense is good, I decide that irrigation is probably a better choice. Can note that Magas decided (in an event) to build a temple in Barca which is nice. But before we have enough money, the Egyptians declare war.


The Seleucids decide to join the war on my side and for the duration of the war I put Damasias, the Royal Treasurer, in charge of the army as while he isn't particularly good at that job (though better than the alternatives) he is a very good general. The Egyptians send their vast armies against the Seleucids so I decide to invade Egypt with my brave 10,000 men (heavy infantry and archers). As my army marches into Marmarica there is word that the war between Rome and Carthage has ended with Carthage ceding Panormus. However they did earlier in the war annex Massilia so it didn't end too badly for them.

But let us focus on the war we fight in right? I occupy Marmarica and marches to Alexandria and start the siege of the Ptolemaic capitol. However as a vast Egyptian army approaches and there is no time to get away, I do sign peace with the Egyptians. I pay tribute.


While the Seleucids were doing reasonably well, the Egyptians still had the upper hand, and would probably have won in the end, so not too terrible, though I do wonder wether a better peace could have been achieved. Anyway Magas is put back in charge of the army (as his popularity has plummeted I do want the army to remain loyal if there is a civil war) and marches home. A son is born named Ephron helping a bit since the succession is now a bit clearer.

Irrigation is constructed and completed in Barca. However trouble is brewing and one Aesillas is proclaimed king in Cyrene by some disloyal councillors and we find ourselves in civil war.


However the weak rebel army (3,000 militia) stands no chance as Magas crushes it and lays siege to Cyrene. After a few months the rebels are defeated and peace is returned. Well after the first ten years, how does the known world look?


Well there is civil war in Macedonia. The Seleucids are growing stronger and there are a few other countries like Pontus and Armenia that has also expanded. The Romans and Carthaginians look like they may end up fighting each other again some time in the future, but who knows.
 
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Probably not the most original title, but it sure beats something like CyrenaicAAR
Very true. :)

It's nice to see a new Rome AAR, and one from Lofman, too! You've picked an interesting country and I'm looking forward to seeing things unfold. I must admit that Cyrenaica's life expectancy strikes me as rather short, but whether you succeed triumphantly or get crushed ruthlessly, it should make for entertaining reading.
 
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Lofman

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Very true. :)

It's nice to see a new Rome AAR, and one from Lofman, too! You've picked an interesting country and I'm looking forward to seeing things unfold. I must admit that Cyrenaica's life expectancy strikes me as rather short, but whether you succeed triumphantly or get crushed ruthlessly, it should make for entertaining reading.
Noticed that there is an AAR for one of them HoIs (Darkest Hour I think) with almost the same name, luckily I don't think people will be confused.

Can already say I survived longer then historical (which would be to 508 AUC IIRC), hope this spoiler won't detract from the following update ;)
 

Lofman

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Between A Rock and a Hard Place
In which we will see another war against Egypt. They don't seem to like me for some reason

The civil war in Macedonia swiftly ends and king Antigonus remains on the throne, good for him. The Carthaginians are however unable to deal with the rebellion in Corniclanum, and the fairly unimpressive province defects to us. It does not provide much income and it does mean that the Carthaginians now have a casus belli to use against us. The grain producing province does however have a forum so it does increase our income somewhat more then it otherwise would thanks to the extra traderoute. And as it is within the Cyrenaica region it is not needed to name any governor so that is also nice.


I spend my time improving my lands by constructing irrigation around Cyrene and is satisfied as the Romans attack the Carthaginians ending any immediate threat from that direction. Further buildings are constructed, Magas himself pays for a temple in Corniclanum (would have been better in Cyrene, but can't really complain about free buildings) and starts constructing a forum in Barca. However then the Egyptians decide that now in 505 AUC, that there is time for a new year, nine years after the last one ended and they begin by no longer accepting our tribute.


The Seleucids eagerly reform our alliance and when the Egyptians as expected declare war the next month king Antiochus nobly join the war on our side. As in the previous war the Egyptians throw their massive armies against the greater threat (that being the Seleucids) leaving us free to invade the useless desert between us and Egypt proper (and eventually reach the Nile valley itself as the Ptolemaic armies are of fighting in Syria and Anatolia). The Seleucids fight well managing to hold off the Egyptians, but it is clear that if it drags out Egypt will have the advantage. The Armenians take this as an oppurtunity to invade, but luckily the brave Cyrenaican armies (12,000 in the main army walking along the coast and 2,000 mercenaries taking the interior provinces) manage to occupy Alexandria which is enough to convince the Egyptians that a white peace would be a good idea.


Would have preferred forcing the Egyptians to give upp their claims on Cyrenaica, Cyrene and Barca (would not prevent them from getting the mission to attack me but anything to reduce their incentive to do so would be nice) but at least we are not forced to pay tribute, or even worse cede provinces. Some money was stocked up during the war so not only is a forum constructed in Cyrene, but the time has also come to improve the fortifications of our important cities starting with Barca.


Anyway a look at our economy shows that it is good and that trade now makes up about half of our income (it is all external giving much more money then internal trade would). Cyrenaica is the only province with an open trade route but as the only option is with Egyptian provinces it does look like it may remain unused for some time. Looking good. As can be seen most trade is with Rome, with a some going to our Seleucid allies, Rhodes and the Bosporan kingdom. It may be time to start looking more closely at the possibilities to import horses as the economy seem strong enough to afford some cavalry. And as for the rest of the world in 510 AUC here it is.


Appearantly the Parthians have arrived, just noticed them. The Seleucids are still fighting the Armenians, and the war between Rome and Carthage continues. I think Colchis is a vassal to Pontus.
 

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Ah, another Lofman AAR for Rome! Let's see if I still remember how this whole "following an AAR" thing works. ;)

Seems like a hazardous enough neighborhood to play in, should be interesting.
 

Stuyvesant

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Uh-oh. I hope the Parthians won't weaken the Seleucids too much: you clearly need them to stand up against the Egyptians.

Nicely done fighting the Egyptians to a standstill. And woohoo! on surviving two years after the historical end of Cyrenaica. Everything else will be just bonus, right? ;)
 

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Wow. Of all the countries to play in Rome, I would never have thought to choose Cyrenaica, but you seem to be doing pretty well with them! :)

Good luck! Looking forward to seeing how this goes. Should be exciting, in any case! :D

Rensslaer
 

loki100

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good to see another Lofman AAR ... and not exactly a frequently chosen country. Well done on surviving the first attempt at ensuring your demise

do you have any designs on grabbing an island? That may just give you the room to survive any future onslaughts.
 

Lofman

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Ah, another Lofman AAR for Rome! Let's see if I still remember how this whole "following an AAR" thing works. ;)

Seems like a hazardous enough neighborhood to play in, should be interesting.
Still safer then Judeas neighborhood :)

Uh-oh. I hope the Parthians won't weaken the Seleucids too much: you clearly need them to stand up against the Egyptians.

Nicely done fighting the Egyptians to a standstill. And woohoo! on surviving two years after the historical end of Cyrenaica. Everything else will be just bonus, right? ;)
Indeed, luckily those provinces the Parthians get aren't that good, but it is still unfortunate.

Wow. Of all the countries to play in Rome, I would never have thought to choose Cyrenaica, but you seem to be doing pretty well with them! :)

Good luck! Looking forward to seeing how this goes. Should be exciting, in any case! :D

Rensslaer
I wonder what is the least played country in Rome. My guess would be Corduene.

good to see another Lofman AAR ... and not exactly a frequently chosen country. Well done on surviving the first attempt at ensuring your demise

do you have any designs on grabbing an island? That may just give you the room to survive any future onslaughts.
Grabbing an island does seem like the best choice for expansion, and more or less what I initially planned. Unfortunately a navy does cost money, and while Cyrenaica is reasonably wealthy for its size there isn't much that can be spared for building a navy, not yet atleast but as the basic buildings are constructed there will hopefully be enough money around to afford some ships.
 

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Between A Rock and a Hard Place
War with Egypt. Again.

Our fortification efforts continue as construction commences at Cyrene. The Seleucid-Armenian war is worrying, mostly because the Seleucids aren't doing too well. Yes they do manage to exhaust Armenian manpower, but it is not like the Seleucids are in any real shape to fight either. In the end the Seleucids pay a modest sum for peace after several years of inconclusive fighting. Luckily we find one more ally to help us, Crete. Surprisingly enough Crete has done well for itself, actually conquering Aetolia (as can be noted since the last update, if one looks at what colour "Aetolia" actually have on the worldmap of that update one can see it, didn't look closely enough so failed to notice it).


The inland is fortified and then, just as the truce ends, Egypt declares war. I am not surprised. Well we have two allies now and both join the fight. The strategy is the same as before, our main army marches along the coast while some mercenaries secure the libyan inland while the Egyptian hordes are busy with beating up the poor Seleucids. Due to Cretes involvement there is also naval battles and the Cretans eventually manages to occupy Euboea. Unfortunately the Seleucids are in a really bad shape, not helped by the Parthians trying to expand in the east, and after most of the Seleucid military (basically everything not fighting the Parthians) have been annihilated they leave the war by ceding the provinces of Cappadocia and Syria.


The Egyptian hordes begin marching to Egypt and outside Alexandria we face them in battle. Well we face one of their armies. The battle is fierce with many dead on both sides, but the brave men of Cyrenaica prevailed!


We can't fight much longer (especially as more Egyptian armies are marching home along the Syrian coast), but luckily the Egyptians are willing to accept a white peace. Which is the best we could hope for really. There is not many more buildings to be built, Magas personally constructed a temple in Cyrene and as I thought it may be time to finally construct it, he constructs irrigation in Corniclanum by himself, all that is left (until we get better tech of course) is a temple (not important) and a forum (considering the province, useless) in the Cyrenaica province. An alliance is formed with Pontus and Corniclanum is fortified. Worrying development in the west as Carthage gets Rome to pay a miniscule tribute, but as Carthage have no stability they are probably not coming for some time. Barbarians invade though from Nassamones and are promptly beaten. So the world as we enter the year 520 AUC looks like this.


Egypt is powerful and the truce is about to end, the only positive is that their current mission isn't to attack us (it is to get access to horses), they still have their cores though. The Seleucids while in a really bad shape did manage to eventually win against Parthia, forcing them to pay a monthly tribute. Pontus is reasonably strong, as is Macedonia (who is unfortunately not willing to ally with us, yet). Rome and Carthage is at peace but who knows how long that will last.
 

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Yikes. That war was a close call - too close for comfort. Hopefully the Seleucids can recover (and maybe Armenia will be bellicose enough to attack Egypt? Oh well, one can hope) before the Egyptians come knocking again. You were fortunate with a white peace: one or two more of your 'victories' and you would've been defeated...

I see that Rhodes seems to be the only island for grabs that isn't controlled by a major power. If I'm even correct about that, then any idea how long until you could try to capture it, giving yourself a safe haven?
 

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Yikes. That war was a close call - too close for comfort. Hopefully the Seleucids can recover (and maybe Armenia will be bellicose enough to attack Egypt? Oh well, one can hope) before the Egyptians come knocking again. You were fortunate with a white peace: one or two more of your 'victories' and you would've been defeated...

I see that Rhodes seems to be the only island for grabs that isn't controlled by a major power. If I'm even correct about that, then any idea how long until you could try to capture it, giving yourself a safe haven?
Indeed. Managed to get a look and Rhodes only seem to have 4k defending them, so the army (and therefore navy that has to transport them) doesn't need to be that huge. So maybe five years or so to construct the navy and pile up enough money to quickly restore stability if necesssary. Unfortunately it would not be that much of a safe haven as the Egyptians have atleast 64 ships, possibly more.
 

Lofman

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Between A Rock and a Hard Place
So this is peace. It is overrated.

Well, the truce with Egypt runs out and while they don't have their mission to attack me, they still consider most of my provinces rightfully theirs. But as it turns out the Egyptians decide not to attack me but instead starts a war against Armenia. Poor Armenia.


It starts well for the Armenians, the first Egyptian army sent against them is completely annihilated but the Egyptians have more armies to throw into the fight. Meanwhile in the west the Carthaginians suffer through a populist civil war which the Numidians use to invade and actually managing to force Carthage to cede Ikosim. But before those good news, there came some bad news. The Armenians suffered several defeats and were forced to sign peace with the Egyptians ceding Sophene and Commagene and becoming a tributary.


Luckily the Egyptians still don't attack us, it is possible that our alliances with both the Seleucids and Pontus have something to do with it as those countries are those Egypt feels threatened by. Anyway as soon as it becomes possible to do so a mine is constructed in the Cyrenaica province. And Corniclanum, just two months after it became a core, adopts Greek culture! Yay, slightly more income and the province now provides some manpower!


Admittedly it is still not a very wealthy province so the income and manpower is not that great, but it helps. And the next year we fight off another group of barbarians from Nassamones, these ones having destroyed the Carthaginian colony in that province (the could do that as Rome had attacked Carthage again, big surprise, so the Carthaginians were too busy to deal with those barbarians) meaning we got a reasonably big pile of cash for defeating them. Infact it is time to start construct a navy. And late in the year 529 Magas dies at the age of 76. His son Ephron becomes the new king and he is an arrogant 33 year old that don't really trust others and have a tendency to be sarcastic. He is also a pretty rightous fellow and have okay stats (Magas though started out slightly better), only really bad at finesse (3, military and charisma is at 5). So as we enter the year 530 AUC this is the world.


The Egyptian expansion is worrying to say the least. Pontus started a war against Colchis and for some inexplicable reason they called in all their allies (including us) rather then just quickly crushing Colchis by themselves so now Coraxi is occupied by the Bosporans (who sent a mighty 5,000 man strong army) and Phasis by Pontus and the Seleucid Empire is in charge of the war so it may last some time. Tylis was conquered by Crete and Macedonia (who still is not interested in an alliance). Rome and Carthage still fights.
 

Stuyvesant

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Good to have Corniclanum assimilated. Overall, the strategic situation seems to be the same, or even worse - Egypt is stronger than ever and you're kinda stuck with little room to expand. While I don't see how you're going to radically change your position (unless Egypt has a helpful civil war or two), it's still interesting to see how well (or long) you can delay the inevitable: a crushing invasion by the Egyptians. :)
 

Malurous

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Funny how the often behemoth Seleucids seem to be failing the one time you'd be happy to see them do pretty well. The way they're going, I'm guessing that Pontus alliance was a life saver.

Crete seems to be dominating. ;)
 

Lofman

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Good to have Corniclanum assimilated. Overall, the strategic situation seems to be the same, or even worse - Egypt is stronger than ever and you're kinda stuck with little room to expand. While I don't see how you're going to radically change your position (unless Egypt has a helpful civil war or two), it's still interesting to see how well (or long) you can delay the inevitable: a crushing invasion by the Egyptians. :)
Indeed.

Funny how the often behemoth Seleucids seem to be failing the one time you'd be happy to see them do pretty well. The way they're going, I'm guessing that Pontus alliance was a life saver.

Crete seems to be dominating. ;)
The main reason I expect is that the advantage the Seleucids have is their potential and that ai-Egypt generally leaves them alone to do whatever they like. Egypt starts stronger but if left alone the Seleucids will surpass them. It is just that the Seleucids haven't had time to recover between the wars this time. Hopefully it will change (at least enough to keep either of them from dominating).

And yes, Crete does seem to be doing quite well, much better then expected.
 

Lofman

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Between A Rock and a Hard Place
Shameless landgrabs in this update.

The war between Rome and Carthage ends with the Carthaginians paying a modest sum and renouncing their claims on Sicily. The Cretans meanwhile conquers Illyria, they are doing much better then I think anyone expected. Then a most interesting oppurtunity arise. The Carthaginians are thrown into a civil war and while most of the populist rebels are in the west, they also have Leptis Magna.


It is time for an oppurtunistic landgrab, after all Carthage already have a claim on Corniclanum so if they want to attack us they already have a reason so there is no need to bother about that. War is declared before the end of the month and king Ephron leads the army against Leptis and before two months have passed the city is occupied and the Carthaginian rebels agree to cede the province.


The province already have a temple and a forum, but is lacking in fortifications and irrigation so those are constructed and in that order. And our victory seem to have impressed the Macedonians who come offering an alliance. Obviously the offer is accepted. For the rest of the decade Rome attacks Carthage and conquers Massilia and the Carthaginian civil war eventually ends with the defeat of the populists, but as their civil war ends a new one erupts in Macedonia. So let us look at the known world in 540 AUC.


The war between Pontus & Allies against Colchis still rages (I am not involved anymore, signed a white peace). The Romans are expanding and have recently started attacking the Gauls. A little colonization here and there by some countries. Egypt have not done much except inreasing the size of their already vast armies.
 

Stuyvesant

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That's the way to do it! If I were feeling particularly pompous, I'd say you were using your enemy's strength against himself: they were big enough to get a serious civil war and you were able to pounce.

Anyway, you had a great opportunity and you made full use of it. You now have strategic depth, i.e. the ability to run away just a little bit further if the Egyptians come calling. :)
 

loki100

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indeed, great siezure of a passing opportunity. As Stuyvesant says, Carthage was just big enough to spin off a large enough revolt for there to be some provinces you could grab.

Agree with Malurous' comment above, this is probably the one time you'd want the Seleucids to be doing some serious blobbing and they are instead as much use as marmite.
 

Stuyvesant

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Agree with Malurous' comment above, this is probably the one time you'd want the Seleucids to be doing some serious blobbing and they are instead as much use as marmite.
But a little bit of Marmite goes an incredibly long way (ask my sister - when she was a wee lass, the baby sitter mistook the Marmite for apple syrup and slathered it on thickly for a nice lunch sandwich), and clearly a pretty decent amount of Seleucids is not doing any good whatsoever. I think your simile is a bit off here. :)