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Sethanon

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Welcome to my Death and Taxes Brabant AAR!

This is my first AAR I'm ever going to write so I hope it's going to be any good! Before we get started with the fun stuff I'd like to explain some things. This AAR is going to be a mix narrative/gameplay with other elements as I deem fit. I will obviously focus on the Low Countries but if something interesting happens somewhere in the world I will cover it.

For the game I'm using the Death and Taxes 4.0 MOD, which I hope doesn't contain too many bugs since it only came out about a couple of days ago. The mod however is so fantastic that I just had to start my AAR in this version. The mod itself is quite different from the vanilla game, but I won't explain too many differences mainly because I can't remember the vanilla game good enough. I also want to thank Lukew for making this mod in the first place!

Then a little warning before we get started, as you may or may not have guessed I am Dutch myself. Which means that my English can sometimes be full of mistakes or weirdly formed sentences, please forgive me for doing this! I hope word's spelling check helps me enough!

My goals:
- Form the beautiful nation of the Netherlands
- Colonize North-America, South-Africa and Indonesia
- Become a major trading power
- Become a major naval power (no guarantees, I don't like navies)
- Expand into Europe in a peaceful way

Rules:
- No cheating
- Infamy can't go above 15
- No DoW's without a CB

If anyone has tips/comments/opinions please leave a comment! I'm always hoping to get better!


The world in 1356 AD

The Duchy of Brabant was one of the many Dutch states trying to rise to power in the area we would now call the Netherlands. Little did they know that they would be the one nation to succeed. Let's start at the beginning though, in the year 1356 AD the Duchy owned the rich provinces of Brabant, Breda and Limburg. To the south the Kingdom of Burgundy was expanding northwards, it wouldn't be long before they turned their eyes to the Dutch lands. Just across the English Channel was the mighty seafarer nation of England, as usually occupied in one of their many wars with their eternal enemies, the French. And in the east the Bohemia held the crown of the Holy Roman Empire. It was in this setting that Queen Jeanne de Reginar had enough of squabbling with her neighbors, she wanted to unite them all under one banner. This is her story.
 

Sethanon

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Rifal

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The Dutch nations are always fun, Ill be watching this. Just be careful as I believe Burgundy gets a mission to conquer you in the early game.
 

UnitRico

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As Holland, I always got stomped on by Burgundy. I then tried as Brabant. It was a great decision, as it turned out to be one of my successful games I've ever played! I'll be looking forward as to how the world shapes itself!
 

Timmie0307

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Good luck...as a Dutchy myself I really wish you the best of luck in forming our beautiful nation :)

Tim
 

Sethanon

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Rifal: Thanks for the first reaction! Im well aware of Burgundy's tread. So I played ahead a little to make sure this AAR doesnt die after update 1!
UnitRico: Burgundy is quite annoying, however it wasn't them who stomped Holland here. See the update!
Tim: Thank you very much, hope I wont fail! Although Ive done it before.
Derahan: Thanks, senator!



Onwards, to the sea!


The Duchy of Brabant and the surrounding nations

'S Hertogenbosch, Royal Palace, 10-01-1356

Queen Jeanne sat in her throne room. Although the so-called royal palace wasn't nearly as royal as the name suggested, she liked the chambers. She considered herself lucky for the fact that one of her ancestors liked big windows. For the time of the year, it was actually quite warm outsides and she briefly considered going out for a morning walk in the palace gardens. But there was a lot of work to do still. The door opened and the Royal Advisor entered the room, Orland Debruyne. Although he had studied production efficiency in one of the more famous Italian universities he mainly had the task to help her govern the Duchy and more.

''There you are, Orland.'' Jeanne spoke. She jumped on her feet and gave him a kiss on the cheek.

''Goodmorning, your royal highness!'' he said with a smile. ''I'm sorry if I kept you waiting but I had to finish the payrolls first.'' He produced a map of the Duchy from his pocket and spread it out on the table.

''I had our finest artist draw this map for us. Here are our lands, surrounded by squabbling Dutch and German city states, all wanting a piece of our nation. Actually they probably want a piece of any nation that surrounds them.'' he explained.

The queen nodded in assessment. ''We shouldn't fight amongst ourselves like this. The Burgundians can strike any moment and once the English and French are done they might both turn their eyes to us. ''

Orland stared at the map for a moment and then pointed towards the bishopric of Utrecht. ''Utrecht is a wealthy city, but more importantly it has access to naval trade routes. In recent years a lot of our merchants already settled there for that exact reason. If we were to incorporate the city into our realm they will make sure that civil unrest will stay at a minimum.''

The queen smiled, maybe her idea of a united Low Countries wasn't that unrealistic after all. ''We will have to use diplomacy though, our armies aren't strong enough yet.'' she said.

''Don't worry, dear. I've already given orders to the captain of the guard to start recruiting more men.'' he once again produced a number of papers from his other pocket this time and spread them out on the table. ''Take a look''


Overview of the Royal family and their advisors


Sliders and movement to Free Trade


Current mission from the Court, the conquest of the Archbishopric Utrecht

Jeanne looked over the data. '' Excellent, this will give us a legitimate cause to declare war on Utrecht. We will need support though.''

''Consider it done, your majesty.'' Orland grinned.

Maybe I should consider myself lucky with him, the queen thought. ''Come walk with me'' she spoke after looking outside again. He quickly fetched some coats to protect against the cold and proceeded to open the door. One of the guardsman followed the pair when they stepped outside to enjoy the wintery sun.


Alliance offers from Cologne and Trier (not shown), offering alliance to Friesland


The Army of Brabant getting some practice against Friesian rebels.

S-Hertogenbosch, Royal Palace, 31-07-1356

''Our army was competent in dispatching the rebels raiding our Friesian allies.'' Orland spoke to the queen.

''A young captain named Guy de Bruxelles proved himself, although rounding up peasants might not be the most difficult task he showed promise.'' he continued.

Jeanne nodded. ''Excellent, once our armies are complete and our allies are ready we can start. Although I am a little worried about the Luxembourg and Liege signing an alliance with Utrecht, the Germans agreed on taking them out.''

She felt a little excited. What if she could actually succeed? Even the city of Utrecht alone would expand her little duchy considerably. Once the new army regiments would be done their standing army would have doubled from before. However with the Frisian insurgents running rampant across their countryside it would take at least a year before they were ready for war.

Jeanne then looked up at Orland, it was a public secret now that they were seeing each other and the young queen couldn't help but smile. Soon, she thought. When Orland noticed her smiling like that she felt a little stupid but kept smiling nonetheless. ''Come here,'' she whispered as she grabbed his hand. She briefly noticed the guards politely turning their backs towards the pair before her mind got occupied with something else.


War with Utrecht and its allies!

Army Barracks, outside 'S-Hertogenbosch, 25-06-1357
One year later

Queen Jeanne de Reginar and her husband emerged from a carriage that just stopped in front of the troops. Captain Guy de Bruxelles saluted the royal pair.

''Your majesty, I present you the Army of Brabant!'' he spoke proudly.

The queen inspected the troops briefly and then walked over to a small stage which had been built for her visit. With a powerful voice she then addressed the men.

''Soldiers! Today is the day we have been preparing for one and a half year! Today we begin uniting the Low countries under our banner! We will we start with our Utrechtian neighbours! We will start small. But we will not stop there! Maybe it won't be us, maybe it won't be our children but one day our descendants will rule over Europe!'' The queen had to pause there because the men had erupted into wild cheering.

Guy had to admit that the queen spoke powerful words. Words that could potentially include lots of wealth.

''Let's go forth and claim what is rightfully ours! Under the capable command of Captain de Bruxelles go and bring home the city of Utrecht!''


Ten days into the conquest of Utrecht the Scots annexed Brabant's neighbor Holland in a stunning move, everyone expected the lands to go to Burgundy

The Dutch state of Holland surrendered to the Scottish and Burgundian troops besieging their cities. They were directly incorporated into Scotland. The armies of Brabant and Utrecht are still fighting outside the city. Meanwhile rumors of Burgundian troops marching near Brabant's border reached the court.


An overview of the warring alliances, Gelre joined later and Aachen would join Luxembourg near the end of the war


The local population in occupied territories is getting upset

Ten months into the war the Liegian armies had occupied Brussels and moved on to besieging Maastricht. The local population did not take this occupation kindly and regulary rioted againt the occupiers. However not all protests were directed against the enemy. Peasant mobs wanted to end the war and also rose up in Breda. Other fronts were more successful though. The Friesian army was occupying Gelre and Utrecht was about to fall. The Luxembourgian army was soundly beaten and their country was occupied by Trier, but the cities kept stubbornly resisting. The Liegian capital of Liege was being besieged by Cologne's army.


May, 1358, The city of Utrecht has fallen, direct annexation was demanded.

s-Hertogenbosch, Royal Palace, 15-05-1358

A messenger stormed into the Throne Room. ''Your majesty! The city has fallen! Utrecht is ours!'' he shouted.
The queen, now more than eight months pregnant jumped on her feet the best she could. ''Finally! Demand their annexation at once. '' she ordered the messenger.

The messenger nodded once and immediately left for the stables, with a fresh horse he could be back in Utrecht within two days. The queen sent a servant to bring Orland the good news. What could go wrong now? They would order the army to march for Maastricht, finally relieving the city. Within a month the Duchy would have a new heir and she could already feel the income increase with the new sea routes.


The Royal pair's first child.

s-Hertogenbosch, Royal Palace, 25-06-1358

Queen Jeanne and Orland Debruyne already got married back in October 1357. It wasn't the most opportune time maybe, with Brabant occupied and Limburg besieged. But sometimes one has to do what one has to do. Nine months later followed to birth of Guillaume. Finally the Duchy had an heir. However from the start it was painfully obvious that the baby didn't have good health. The royal surgeon couldn't do much but to ease the suffering. Their only hope was praying, praying that fortune would keep favoring them.


Guillaume dies of a fever.

Ten days later Guillaume died. Quenne Jeanne was heartbroken and locked herself into the royal bedroom, refusing to speak to anyone but her husband. However more dark tidings were yet to come. In a stunning move the army of Liege had destroyed Brabant's troops which were sent to Maastricht in a series of attacks. Captain Guy de Bruxelles managed to escape the onslaught and fled to Den Bosch a couple of days later. Brabant was without an army now. Hope was not lost completely though. Cologne and Trier occupied Luxembourg and Friesian troops finally conquered Gelre. A messenger from the German forces reached Den Bosch soon after. The city of Luxembourg was about the fall, would that happen the enemy's coalition would surely agree to a white peace.


The end of the war

In December word reached both fronts that Luxembourg had finally fallen. The Luxembourgians, now without army and land quickly dispatched a messenger to s-Hertogenbosch. Debruyne signed white peace on behalf of the queen immediately. Their first goal had finally been accomplished. However the costs had been greater than anyone could have thought. Their army would need rebuilding to protect against larger nations and the queen... Debruyne hoped time would both heal her wounds and give her back her spirit.


The Duchy of Brabant three years after Jeanne's plan
 
Last edited:

Sethanon

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ahh soy you sized utrecth, i dont like those people, they are always so annoying :D
Yup, they are the first to fall to our mighty nation. Giving us access to the sea for obvious reasons.

I actually live in Brabant :) So i am following this
Welcome aboard! Always good to have some fellow countrymen to cheer us along.
I actually played ahead until about 1375 by now and we're still alive and kicking. Probably because Burgundy got trashed, as will be shown in the next update.
The next update is planned for release tomorrow!

Thanks for the comments!
 

Malurous

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Quality start, I like your format. And the long term plans you state are intriguing as well. Looking forward for more!
 

Ruwaard

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Great to see a Brabant AAR :). One nitpick, though Brabant did have some capitals Brussel, Leuven, Antwerpen and 's-Hertogenbosch, however the ducal court most likely was in Brussel or Leuven.
This brings me to a request, reconquer (the margraviate) of Antwerpen on Burgundy.

Furthermore the duke of Brabant also is duke of Limburg and duke of Lothryk/Lothier. The ducal title of Lothryk is, what was left of the duchy of Lower Lotharingia and as such Brabant was one of the heirs of Lotharingia.
 

Sethanon

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Great to see a Brabant AAR :). One nitpick, though Brabant did have some capitals Brussel, Leuven, Antwerpen and 's-Hertogenbosch, however the ducal court most likely was in Brussel or Leuven.
This brings me to a request, reconquer (the margraviate) of Antwerpen on Burgundy.

Furthermore the duke of Brabant also is duke of Limburg and duke of Lothryk/Lothier. The ducal title of Lothryk is, what was left of the duchy of Lower Lotharingia and as such Brabant was one of the heirs of Lotharingia.

I was aware that the actual court was in Brussel/Leuven depending on the time. The game however put the capital in Den Bosch, so instead of complicating things I decided to just follow that. The Low Countries were a lot more fractured than the game actually shows unfortunately. To keep it easy though I wont bother trying to add that all into the AAR! :D

As for your request, once I form the Netherlands I think I get cores on Anvers, Flandres, Gand. Maybe then I can actually handle Burgundy, for now they're still the scary nation in the south. Brabant also has the possibility the form the Nation of Lotharingia in game, I decided against that though.

Thanks for your comment, update coming tonight!
 

Avindian

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I was aware that the actual court was in Brussel/Leuven depending on the time. The game however put the capital in Den Bosch, so instead of complicating things I decided to just follow that. The Low Countries were a lot more fractured than the game actually shows unfortunately. To keep it easy though I wont bother trying to add that all into the AAR! :D

As for your request, once I form the Netherlands I think I get cores on Anvers, Flandres, Gand. Maybe then I can actually handle Burgundy, for now they're still the scary nation in the south. Brabant also has the possibility the form the Nation of Lotharingia in game, I decided against that though.

Thanks for your comment, update coming tonight!

What, exactly, is Lotharingia? It sounds similar to the German name for Lorraine; are they related?
 

Sethanon

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What, exactly, is Lotharingia? It sounds similar to the German name for Lorraine; are they related?

Yes, Derahan is right. Its however different from the OPM(or2) called Lorraine despite the similarity in name. The region roughly corresponds to the middle-Frankish kingdom after carving up Charlemagne's realm. In game you need atleast 25 cities in the The Netherlands/Belgium/Burgundy/Switzerland/Lorraine/Alzas region to form the nation. So its a pretty powerful nation once it forms.

Update coming in an hour or two!
 

Ruwaard

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I was aware that the actual court was in Brussel/Leuven depending on the time. The game however put the capital in Den Bosch, so instead of complicating things I decided to just follow that. The Low Countries were a lot more fractured than the game actually shows unfortunately. To keep it easy though I wont bother trying to add that all into the AAR! :D

As for your request, once I form the Netherlands I think I get cores on Anvers, Flandres, Gand. Maybe then I can actually handle Burgundy, for now they're still the scary nation in the south. Brabant also has the possibility the form the Nation of Lotharingia in game, I decided against that though.

Thanks for your comment, update coming tonight!

Brabant should already have a core on Antwerpen (Antwerp):mad:; I'm from the Western part of North Brabant, which until the Dutch revolt was a part of the Quarter of Antwerpen in the duchy of Brabant. Cores on Gent (Ghent)and Vlaanderen (Flanders) are always useful too.

Personally I have a sweetspot for Lotharingia, but then again I do like CK, furthermore Brabant is the heir of Lower Lotharingia. I do like a United Netherlands, however as I Brabantian the RL end result of the Dutch Revolt wasn't good Brabant at all, since it ended up divided between the Republic of the Netherlands (as a Generality Land, not a full member) and the Spanish Netherlands. OTOH Brabant as the center of the United 17 Netherlands....
Lotharingia was the Middle-Frankish kingdom under Lothar I if i'm not misstaken. :)

Lotharingia was the Northern part of Middle Francia (middle Frankish kingdom, other parts were Burgundy and Italy), which went to the second son of emperor Lothar I, king Lothar II.
The German name for the duchy of Lorraine, originally the duchy of Upper Lotharingia (aka duchy of the Moselle) is Lothringen (in French Lorraine); whereas the German name for the kingdom of Lotharingia is Lotharingien (French Lotharingie).
 

Derahan

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Lotharingia was the Northern part of Middle Francia (middle Frankish kingdom, other parts were Burgundy and Italy), which went to the second son of emperor Lothar I, king Lothar II.
The German name for the duchy of Lorraine, originally the duchy of Upper Lotharingia (aka duchy of the Moselle) is Lothringen (in French Lorraine); whereas the German name for the kingdom of Lotharingia is Lotharingien (French Lotharingie).

Ah well, not my area of history or expertise :D