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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

jez9999

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Chimu - the gutsy natives!

Click here for take two if you want... the first time round did not end well.

OK, having played EU3 for a while now I've decided to try pretty much the ultimate challenge: Chimu, the Native American OPM surrounded by Inca. The game pretty much gives these guys every disadvantage to the point where if you don't get lucky, it's basically impossible to survive as them, so I will be doing a bit of saving and re-loading from time to time. However apart from that, it's vanilla EU3: DW.

On the first day, I move the slider one notch towards centralization (reducing stability by 1, no problem); the country starts out fully decentralized and narrowminded. This is going to be a very, very long journey. The first order of business is obviously to take out the Inca. Allying with them will get you nowhere, so we convert our leader to a general (0 fire, 3 shock, 3 manouver, 1 siege) and declare on them on a tribal feud CB. We lose 1 stability as we have good relations but who cares? We'll get that back in a month. While my leader might convert into a half-decent general, he's no good long-term as we'll see later and we hope he dies as soon as possible.

Beating the Inca here requires some luck, basically. What makes it even possible is the fact that it seems you can seize native American provinces like you can colonies! Normally you'd have to get them as part of a peace deal. I send one regiment straight for their capital, another to get Cajamarca, and another to get Tumbes. I seize each province I land upon, so I end up with Tumbes, Cajamarca, Huanuco, Tarma, and Lima. It's at this point that I see the 10,000 Inca troops bearing down on me. They march onto Lima and occupy it with sights on my capital, so I desperately sue for peace. I "cede" Lima and they accept the deal! This is the bare minimum needed to get Chimu into the game.


Tarma is a gold-producing province so it provides me with about as much monthly income as the yearly income for the whole empire. So far, only a small amount of extra inflation from gold production.

Nearly 5 years go by and not much happens apart from me slowly replacing my mercenaries with regular troops. This is a slow process as my manpower builds up slowly and maxes out at about 2500. I check the Inca mission and it's to reconquer one of the provinces I took. Predicting that they would DoW on me shortly after the ceasefire ended (they had built up 11000 troops), I kept building more and more troops over my force limit. Sure enough, a few days after the ceasefire ended, they DoW'd on me. I was ready with 7000 regular troops and I quickly bought about 4000 more mercenaries. Their 11000 clashed with my 11000, but as they walked along to attack me I had a huge terrain advantage as well as a better leader. We won and annihilated all of their army! Quickly I moved mine forward and seized most of their remaining provinces, then agreeing to a peace:


I'll have some money please, and they can drop their cores on a bunch of provinces. It's at this point that at the end of the month, I discovered something truly sadistic that Paradox had added. Native American tribes aren't nerfed enough, apparently, so they have yet another penalty - the "Incapable Ruler" penalty, which gives you a horrible revolt risk increase, a horrible reduction in yearly tax, and a horrlbe max infamy limit reduction. This applies if you have more than 9 provinces, a tribal government, and a leader whose admin skill is below 7. For now, I give away a couple of provinces to the Inca to get my province count down to 9. Long-term, this is going to be one of those things where we need to keep reloading to ensure we're the luckiest native American tribe ever. Every leader we have from now on must have at least 7 admin skill. Anything less is game over for a native American tribe. Not to mention that we need high admin for Westernization as well, anyway.

In anticipation of being able to get more provinces, I want to get a colonist or two (that's another area where we'll do the reload-until-lucky thing - colonization must always succeed!). As we're literally hundreds of years off our first national idea, pretty much the only way we can get a colonist is with a coastal centre of trade. Luckily, the inland Incan one stagnates and dies, and a new one opens up in our coastal capital:


This gives us one colonist every 10 years... as long as it doesn't stagnate and die. Which it will. Yay.

More waiting for revolt risk to go down and every captured province to core, and then this happens:


For a poor country that needs to lose money annually to keep inflation down, this is sweeeeet.

More waiting, and after the latest ceasefire with the Incas ends, I decide which 3 provinces I want them to keep - one gold province (to help reduce my inflation), and two poor grain provinces. I also vassallize them:


Now I have a 6-star master of the mint and a 6-star sheriff, too. Not much else to do with the magistrates except commission paintings, and the religious stuff you can do as Animists helps raise cultural tradition too.

Then my coastal centre of trade stagnates and dies, and another one pops up in the Incans inland capital province of Huanuco. I tried reloading this several times, but it always happens. I guess the game finds a capital of a neighbour to open a new CoT in and as the Incans are my only neighbours, it puts one there. I'm now stuck on 0.74 colonists. However, as my leader isn't dead yet and I need to wait for an admin level 7 leader, we can't use the colonists yet anyway - it would increase my province count beyond 9 and screw me over. When I get a decent leader, I can diplo-annex the Incans and start colonizing (hopefully when I deconstruct that CoT, a new one will pop up in one of my coastal provinces; perhaps my capital?)

Upon loading my game one time, I notice that England has been rather successful...


Castille, Portugal, Aragon, Naples, Brittany, France, and Burgandy look like they're fine too. This game could end rather quickly and brutally when they start to arrive. Oh well...

More to come next time!
 
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AsdfeZxcas

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Will follow. I hope your AAR with Paganism goes better than my ill-fated Pagan Tectonic Order one. Anyway, MAY THE PIGMAN BE WITH YOU!
 

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When are you expecting the Europeans to arrive? Would it be faster to go a little crazy and explore North to find the Mexican natives and conquer them/ 1province to give you an earlier Westernisation window? Since smaller nations can change sliders faster have you considered selling more provinces to your vassal to speed up your research/moves?
 
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1anrs

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Saw the questions on the other thread, this looks interesting. Definitely subbed!
 

yequr

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Very nice so far. The CoT will probably move back inland and stay there just when you have 0.99 colonists though, I've been there myself. :p
I'm a bit surprised Rebellions have apparantly not been a problem so far though, it always takes me years to get rid of one moderately-sized stack as an American or African country, and with all these mountains...
 

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We attacked and vassalized the Inca. We can't diplo-annex the Inca for 10 years, but that's how we want to finish them off because we have a mission that gives us a core on Huamanga if we diplo-annex them.

10 years pass and we diplo-annex them.

At this point, I discover I hadn't been paying attention: the "Incapable Ruler" penalty is actually threefold, applying different penalties if ANY of your leader's skills are less than 7. What sadistic *!"&£!! thought this up??? Oh look. We got an appropriate new leader:


Wonder how we got him? I had to roll the dice quite a few times for that.

The diplo-annex of Inca happens, and we don't get Incapable Ruler penalties now:


The long and short of it is: the only way to get anywhere as the Chimu is to get leaders with 7+ diplomacy, admin, and military - every time. In other words, impossible without cheating. Then, replace the Inca as the big nation in South America. So there we have it. February 1430 and we've basically replaced the Inca as the only power in South America, but we're totally stuck for a long time because we can't get a coastal CoT.

Eventually the old CoT stagnated and died, and this happened:


By the coast again. We're gonna get a colonist. We use him to expand north to Guayaquil. Because it's next to the national focus, it expands quite quickly. The revolt risk is also low and dropping, although considering how centralized you have to go to get Westernized, the situation seems dire because it will eventually go up to a bare minimum of +4 across the country (+11 policy restriction, -3 stability, -3 tolerance, and -1 divination). Our tribal democracy government type is abysmal, and to switch to Noble Republic we need to get to government level 10 which is approximately 50 billion years away.


Guayaquil becomes self-sustaining with a population of about 1500. The natives never rose up against us. A couple of months later, we core on the first Inca province we captured, Cajamarca. Then Tumbes.

The CoT in Chanchan is about to stagnate and disappear. I purposely demolish it early in the hope that it will appear in our newly-cored coastal province and... it does! This probably gives us another 10 years of 0.1 colonists/year:


I'm playing the game on max speed now, which I almost never do because it usually throws interesting stuff at you all the time. It was so not designed to be played as the native Americans. Quito is discovered to the north. We go for further colonization north with the 1 colonist we now have. Success. Set Quito as national focus and wait. Zzzzzzzz...


By 1458, it appears that the Maya and Zapotec have discovered us because we get alliance offers from both of them (which we accept), yet we still can't see any of their territory. Later, their capitals appear on the map when they war with each other, but that's it.

Quito develops into a self-sustaining province, and shortly after, Cauca is discovered:


We colonize that with our 1 colonist and wait.

In 1471, our centre of trade stagnates and disappears, and isn't replaced by another one because we now know about Mexico and trade through that. No more colonists. Although later for some reason, one does appear in Puno, an inland province. Even if I demolish it, it always comes back in Puno. We don't even have the tech to send merchants there. Most useless CoT ever.

Cauca develops into a self-sustaining province and Choco is discovered to the north. Most of our provinces are now cored. However, we now have no prospect of expanding any further, no colonists, no tech, no conquistadors, no ships, and no neighbours. I played the game on for another 50 years until 1516. Nothing happened. You're just totally screwed. I mean I thought maybe some event would help out, or there would be some way to expand, but nope. Apparently the native Americans were incapable of any exploration. Makes you wonder how they ever got to the Americas. Castille are the only European power colonizing, and they're colonizing South America. I'm going to stop playing now because unless you just cheat and Westernize through the console, they're going to land next to you and destroy you. Continuing the game feels like being on death row.

Playing this game as Chimu has been the most boring and depressing game of EU3 I've ever done. I wouldn't recommend it. I don't think they should've even made the native Americans playable, to be honest. They are nerfed beyond all hope. The same would apply to the Inca by the way; they have the same government type and everything, we just replaced them as the hopeless nation of South America.
 
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1anrs

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...I'm going to stop playing now because unless you just cheat and Westernize through the console, they're going to land next to you and destroy you. Continuing the game feels like being on death row.

Playing this game as Chimu has been the most boring and depressing game of EU3 I've ever done. I wouldn't recommend it. I don't think they should've even made the native Americans playable, to be honest. They are nerfed beyond all hope. The same would apply to the Inca by the way; they have the same government type and everything, we just replaced them as the hopeless nation of South America.
That's a damn shame, I was quite enjoying this and thought you were doing really well. I do understand though, you actually have to play the damn thing, we just see the highlights.
 

AsdfeZxcas

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The History and Empires mod really boosts the Native American nations.
 

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Oh there's a new mod? ;)
that's sad you're ending it so fast , but the first 150 years are pretty boring as you won't have anyone to discover you ...
 

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It can be done without cheating although you do need luck so some saving can be permitted I gess, prawnstar showed in his Inca AAR how.

As Chimu, you take the 9 wealthiest provinces from the inca and keep the remaining Inca provinces as a vassal (since this gives you gold.) If you don't want to cheat you do not expand beyond 9 provinces and just start saving gold gold and more gold at this point while you do slider moves. Advisor wise I don't remember anymore if it really helps to go for the gov tech guy, you would have to check that.

In in case here is the part were you must get lucky you need an admin 7 ruler: you want a border with the europeans as fast as possible. preferably the portugese as they are less agressive then castille, sometimes. People sometimes force this border by selling a province too them as soon as they make contact. If you manage to westernize quickly enough you get a fighting chance with better units when the inevatible war happens. if you are really lucky you managed to sink your gold stack into forts as soon as mil tech cathes up to that. If you survive the initial war it becomes a game of cathing up.

I think prawn even did it before you were able to westernize the militairy so he needed cannon stacks with escort to prevent a stack wipe to stay on even ground later game. These days you can just modernize and stand on even ground.

Can imagine it is a frustrating affair though.
 

jez9999

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It can be done without cheating although you do need luck so some saving can be permitted I gess, prawnstar showed in his Inca AAR how.

As Chimu, you take the 9 wealthiest provinces from the inca and keep the remaining Inca provinces as a vassal (since this gives you gold.) If you don't want to cheat you do not expand beyond 9 provinces and just start saving gold gold and more gold at this point while you do slider moves. Advisor wise I don't remember anymore if it really helps to go for the gov tech guy, you would have to check that.

In in case here is the part were you must get lucky you need an admin 7 ruler: you want a border with the europeans as fast as possible. preferably the portugese as they are less agressive then castille, sometimes. People sometimes force this border by selling a province too them as soon as they make contact.
I've looked over world map animations of several games I've played, and Inca/Chimu usually get European contact between 1590 - 1630; if it's a neighbouring colony, they get 30 to 35 years until the Europeans terminate them. Trouble is, sometimes it's just the Europeans declaring war with no neighbouring colony, which is game over territory. Definitely looks like I went about things the wrong way by trying to expand north, though. If anything, expanding south seems a better idea for survival, and you almost never seem to bump into Castille that way (at least not until you're strong enough to handle them). Perhaps Tumbes should be the most northern province until you're really in control of South America.
 
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jez9999

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Chimu - the gutsy natives!(take two)

First time round, I tried expanding north as Chimu, and the result was disastrous. I even tried again in a later game where I kept coastal CoT's in my territory so I could actually colonize all the way up to the Aztec, and Castille just declared war and fully annexed us. That seems like a recipe for disaster.

So the only tactic really left that might work is to rely on southern expansion, at least for the first half of the game. I'll try that in take two, which I'm doing because I now have a sadistic desire to overcome the massive penalties imposed on Chimu! I'll be focusing research on land tech instead of government tech, because I think that's the more important one to go for to get to land tech 3 by the time the Westerners arrive - we can have fort 1's built everywhere. Government tech 10, allowing the switch out from tribal government to Noble Republic, will come very quickly once Westernization is started.

I pick up from an early savegame from take 1 - what I call "Chimu survival" which is where we grab a few territories from the Inca in the first few months of the game, then "cede" one of them which fools the AI into thinking they've somehow won the war when in fact we gained territories, including importantly the gold-producing Tarma.

After a few years, we obviously attack Inca again and take a bunch more of their territory. We're going to try to cheat as little as possible this time, so we're keeping to 9 provinces to avoid the incapable ruler penalty. As we're planning on colonizing one extra province to expand the "surface area" for Western powers to colonize next-door to us, we want to leave ourselves with 8 provinces and the Inca with 4. I think we can just about handle the inflation caused by 3 of Inca's 4 gold mines, so we take 3 of them and leave Inca with the 1 gold mine province that is their capital. In a later war, we then get them to drop their cores on all but the 4 provinces we want them to have so we stay at 9:


Note that the regional CoT has popped up in Chanchan, so for now we have 0.1 colonists per year.

Shortly after, we give Huanuco to the Inca. All of Inca's cores are removed except the 3 provinces they now own, and Cajamarca. Later, we'll give them Cajamarca just before we create our colony, to stick within the 9 province limit. Also, another war and vassalization of the Inca is on the cards.


A little later... it's 1418 and we have now indeed vassalized the Inca. We're just about keeping inflation stable with our 6-star master of the mint countering about 0.11 inflation from reliance on gold mines (with minting at zero), and we're set to get to land tech 1 in 1456. It's a steady march from now for the next 150 years or so, to centralization -2, and innovative -3. I'm going to do centralization first, and then innovative.

I notice that in Europe, Castille has taken quite a beating by Aragon and been forced to release Galicia as a sovereign state. Ironically, we probably want Castille to actually do well and attack the French as we're expanding south; the French are likely to come into contact with us and may have a very high manpower! Still, I'm sure Castille will get their territory back on a reconquest CB pretty quickly:


I also finally remember to take the religious decision "Religious Sacrifices" (I always forget this!), lowering stability cost and increasing yearly cultural tradition. We avoid the other religious decisions though, because they increase stability cost and we'll want that as low as possible for Westernization and switching to a Noble Republic (though, we should probably take these decisions immediately after we've carried all that out):


In July 1428, we get a "Bourgeoisie Request Privileges" event - exactly the kind of thing we need to move towards plutocracy for free! Our tribal government type doesn't want us to go beyond -1 aristocracy but we start out at -5, giving a nasty increased revolt risk. We don't have time to move this slider obviously, being focused on centralization and innovation, so these events are great.

By July 1438, the CoT had already stagnated and moved inland, and now it has stagnated and moved back to Chanchan again. We currently have 0.7 colonists, so we're going to get a colonist this time round.

In April 1441, we get a colonist, give Cajamarca to the Inca, and colonize Chuquiabo. This gives us more "surface area" to get Western colonies next to us, and still allows them to colonize Arica, which for some reason seems to be one they colonize quite often, when I check back to what happened in some of my other games (this prediction turned out to be amazingly accurate, as we'll see later). Not sure why the AI likes Arica so much.


Eeeeeeeeexcellent. Another event in August 1442 gives us the win-win of free money and free movement towards plutocracy again:

We now only get a +2 increased revolt risk because of the aristocracy policy restriction.

We discover in May 1443 that Chuquiabo is to give us coffee. Not bad!

A couple of events, including a "Sale of Titles" event in August 1444, gives us yet more free plutocracy gains - seriously lucky. We now have no policy restriction revolt risk because of too much aristocracy (the slider is at -1 aristocracy); it will only come from too much centralization, which is unavoidable given that we're doing Westernization.


By April 1452, we're coring on some provinces, and our colony in Chuquiabo is now self-sustaining. That's the only expansion we'll be doing until the Westerners arrive.


At the start of November 1456 - we get to land tech 1!


Only took 57 years... by New World standards, that's pretty quick... and by June 1477, we're at land tech 2. Current estimate is that it'll probably take another 45 years until land tech 3, unless we get a lucky land tech event. However, that should get closer as we get more innovative - we're now at centralization -2 and it's time to start on the innovative slider moves. only 8 to go until Westernization is possible. :)

I'd give a more detailed description of the next ~50 years of game time, but it can be summed up with "do nothing except innovative slider changes, commissioning the odd painting, and hiring the odd adviser."

Come January 1514, land tech 3 arrives... let the fort building begin! If we multiplied our abysmal manpower (4,418) by ten, we'd still be far too weak to hold out against France, which has now conquered most of Burgandy. Oh well...

We've started to discover some terra incognita, and by July 1534 - now that we can see Castille - we can try to give them military access... and surprisingly they accept! Will this stop them DoWing on us? Well, it's worth a try, anyway.


So we're finally getting close to the slider levels we need to Westernize; just 1 innovative to go. We've gone pretty quickly, but this took me by surprise!


Arghh, Britain have actually founded a colony in Arica about 9 years too early for me to Westernize! This 1549 colony is way earlier than I've seen the AI found a colony in Arica before. Britain must have some cored provinces on the eastern side of South America. I knew the AI liked Arica, but man... At least it's not Castille. They do accept military access, but it's still unnerving having them on the doorstep. The sooner we can get Westernized now, the better.

Finally, in Feb 1558, we're able to move to innovative -3. I do have to kill off my current leader from the console because I need one with admin of 7 or higher - we've had 4 in a row with admin lower than 7. Pretty unlucky. Now we get one with admin 8, it's time to Westernize. Britain don't want to play ball. This is happening a lot:


Come on Britain... you know you want military access. We keep persisting in giving them military access, but over time they will stop accepting it. Makes it a lot easier for them to declare war on us.

A bit of luck in January 1559 - a 7-year-old regent now rules Britain. They can't DoW on us for 8 years, still probably not long enough but better than nothing.

By November 1561, we're now fully Westernized in tech, but it will be a few decades before we can get the centralization to do military modernization! We Westernized tech quite quickly, over the course of about 4 years. One of the few things Chimu have going for them is that the whole territory is the same Animist religion, and the same culture group. This keeps stability cost pretty low, even without temples. Also, all of our provinces are cored as we haven't yet annexed the Inca. We no longer need (or want) a Western neighbour, and I have an idea...


Woohoo for the natives! We incited them a few times and after a few lucky successes, they have eradicated the British colony on our doorstep. Britain may still DoW on us (they've cancelled military access now and won't accept it again), but at least they won't be able to mass troops on the border. We might even be able to stop them landing if we quickly build a bunch of carracks at naval tech 3.

By April 1563, we've reached government tech 10 and stability +2. The baptism of fire continues as we reform the government and escape the terrible clutches of Tribal Democracy! A very respectable Noble Republic awaits us. No more incapable leader penalties means that we now annex the Inca ASAP, and colonize, colonize, colonize. We want a manpower of 40k to match the British manpower, ideally. Getting 20k would be an achievement.


July 1564 comes around, and we've now incorporated the Inca and founded 4 colonies in Arica, Caracara, Caranga, and Moxos. Here's the current situation:


We are losing about 80 ducats a year because of colonial maintenance, even on low military maintenance, so I don't know what we're gonna do about that. Maybe I'll need to go back and found fewer colonies. Once we've gotten back to stability +3 and a level 6 master of the mint, though, we can probably mint enough money to break even, and not increase inflation by much. 10 years of this and the colonies will become self-sustaining, easing the financial burden a lot. Building a fleet is out right now, though. It's far too expensive and I'm spending all my my money on forts, constables, docks, etc.


Maya call us to war in May 1570 as they've DoW'd against Aztec. We might as well accept the call, to earn a bit more cash with war taxes. Meanwhile, we've managed to get rid of France's colony from Banda Oriental by inciting the natives a few times, so hopefully their interest in South America is reduced. A couple of the former Incan provinces have a revolt risk above zero because they weren't cored by us (we gained a core on one of their provinces when we diplo-annexed them because we had a mission to annex them, and I think we had another core because of a boundary dispute event).


We're struggling financially but that's hardly unexpected; it should be easier once our 4 colonies become self-sustaining and we can get round to building a fleet of carracks. The colonies' goods are coffee, copper, gold, and naval supplies, which is a nice range. We still have about 20 years to go until we can get to full centralization, and military Westernization, but we've done about as well as can be expected given our starting position.
Will we survive til the end of the game? Maybe, but one thing's for sure: this definitely seems like a much better strategy than expanding north. If we had gone north, Castille would probably have annexed us by now.

That's it for this instalment!
 
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It lives! :p Anyway, you're doing great.
 

yequr

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Another 20 years of not getting DoWed and you should be fine. Maybe. Hopefully. So how likely is it?
 

1anrs

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Fantastic, glad to see this revived. And I would never have thought of inciting natives to revolt, what a good idea.
 

Modernaire

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Thanks for keeping the dream alive.

I noticed in my Taungu playthrough that Aragon beat Castile back to a 3PM and France was completely crushed by an alliance of Burgundy and Portugal (Portugal inherited Bohemia, and yes, the BBB simply does not exist. France is wiped from the map). Seriously, it's like I took one break from the European theater of war and everything went crazy. I'm wondering if Aragon has more of a chance in general thanks to the 5.2 manpower nerf, but I haven't played a solid campaign in Europe to watch yet.
 

unmerged(145182)

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Well done!
If I were you, I would not bother too much about gaining some inflation if that helps you grow strong enough. I usually don't fear going up to 9-10% inflation in the begining for building up the country. Off course things become more expensive but a strong navy when needed (and against England or Great Britain no matter how strong my navy is, even surclassing them in naval tech, big ship quality and quantity, I always loose the naval battles!!! Looks like the game is bugged sometimes) can change a lot.
Usually after mid-17th century early 18th, the country is so well developped you are loosing inflation quickly (going free subject if lucky helps also! -2 inflation sometimes happens on slider move). I usually ends up outclassing everybody on tech, earning more money than I can build thing with 0 inflation... well I've never tried South American countries, just Southern Asia ones.

Nice AAR anyway.