EU4 - Art of War- Dev Diary 8 - Sorties, Terrain and the Maghreb

Wizzington

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We’re back with the end of week Europa Universalis IV: Art of War dev diary with a bit more information on how we are tweaking war fighting, some big changes to big ideas and a look at Africa’s Maghreb region and how redrawing that map remakes the politics of the region.

Sorties
A new feature in Art of War is the ability to sortie the garrison of a province that is under siege. If a small, isolated army is besieging one of your high level fortresses, you can now attempt to break that siege by clicking the ‘Sortie’ button. This will create a new army out of the garrison of the fort, which will engage the enemy army besieging the province. At the end of the battle - win or lose - the sortieing army will return to their garrison duty, unless you misjudged badly and they were wiped out to the last man in which case the enemy gains control of the province as there is nobody left to defend it!

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Abandon Idea Group
Sometimes you want to be able to change your mind. Maybe you picked the Offensive idea group and then your military genius monarch died and was replaced by the reincarnation of Henry VI. Maybe you started colonizing, only to realize that all the good land was already taken and you were left with only Greenland and Madagascar - safe from the coming pandemic, but otherwise almost worthless. There are lots of reasons that a nation’s priorities might change over the course of three hundred years and you’ve been chained to those early game choices even if they don’t fit.

Until now.

Art of War now lets you do exactly that by allowing you to abandon idea groups that you have already picked. Doing so will immediately clear that idea group slot and refund 10% of the points you had invested in that idea group (usually 40 points, but may differ depending on active modifiers).

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Abandon Core
Art of War doesn’t just let you abandon your ideas, it also lets you abandon your dreams, specifically your dreams of reconquering core territory lost to other states. Sometimes territorial ambitions must be forgotten for the sake of foreign policy, and Art of War lets you do that by allowing you to remove cores you have on provinces that you do not own by simply clicking the ‘Abandon Core’ button in the province that you’re giving up on. Of course, giving up on your rightful territory like that makes you look a bit weak to others, so this action costs you 10 prestige. You do, however, get rid of an irritant to harmonious relations between neighbors.

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One Province - One Terrain
We’ve decided that the terrain system in EU4, while interesting, was difficult for the player to understand and plan their battles around. In the free patch accompanying Art of War, each province has one dominant terrain type that will always be the one used for battles as opposed to having a percentage breakdown of possible terrain types. We’ve also improved the terrain information overall by fleshing out terrain tooltips and adding river indicators & tooltips that will show you which provinces have rivers flowing between them.

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New Price Mechanic
Another new thing in the free patch accompanying Art of War is an overhaul of the trade goods price mechanics. The old, confusing and unwieldy system of supply and demand is now gone, replaced with a system of fixed prices that are influenced by important events. For example, the base price of slaves may be fairly low, but when the Europeans start colonizing the New World in earnest, the ‘Triangle Trade’ event will fire and greatly increase the value of the slave trade... at least until the abolitionists get going a few centuries later.

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New Mapmodes
As usual, the patch also comes with a number of new mapmodes.

The Simple Terrain Mapmode will color all provinces according to their terrain type, allowing you to quickly see which areas are the most suited for reckless cavalry charges.

The Local Autonomy Mapmode shows you the level of local autonomy (explained in dev diary 1) in your provinces.

The Fort Level Mapmode shows you the current level of fortifications in all provinces.


Maghreb

The Maghreb, which previously consisted mostly of Morocco, Algiers, Tunisia and Tripoli, has undergone significant changes to both provinces and countries. The wastelands have shifted, and there is now a eastern way through the Sahara Desert, across the Djado Plateau, connecting the Maghreb countries to West and North Central Africa through two paths.

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The Kingdom of Tlemcen, one of the successors to the Almohad Caliphate, has taken the place of much of Algiers in the 1444 start date. Along with several smaller countries and tribes such as Touggourt and M'zab, they have the potential to form Algiers if they gain control of key cities in the region. M'zab is of special interest as the only Ibadi nation in the area and the only Ibadi theocracy at the start of the game.

Looking further east, Tunisia's borders have been expanded to better reflect their historical area of influence, and the tribes in Djerid and Fezzan are now represented as countries in their own right. Tripoli, similar to Algiers, is now gone from the 1444 start date, but can be formed by these tribes if they manage to take it from Tunisia. In addition, if Morocco and Tunisia should cease to exist, they can be recreated by tribes and nations with similar culture who retake their respective homelands.

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Many smaller nations which do not exist at the start of the game, such as Sus, Tafilalt and Kabylia, make appearances later in the historical starts and have cores from the start of the game on their key regions, meaning that they, along with Fez, can be released or break free in any game. To make room for these additions, the province setup of the entire Maghreb region is now much more fine-grained, allowing for more interesting conflicts and power shifts in the region.

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Jorlem

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Abandon Idea Group
Will there be a confirmation window, to ensure that we are certain that we want to abandon the idea group? I don't relish the thought of accidentally loosing an entire idea group to a single misclick. Same for abandoning cores.
 

Frossa

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Hmm, does the new terrain system decrease the usefulness of high Maneuver Generals?
 

Fishman786

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Getting rid of some of the excessive randomness that plagues this game. Noice.
 

klingonadmiral

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Will the refund be equal to the actual amount that was spent on the group, or on the cost the game assumes? Assumed if switch to Protestant, but have completed an idea group beforehand, will I recieve 400 MP or 360 MP?
 

Gemberkoekje

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Good question, it seems the change makes high maneuver in a land leader somewhat useless.

Unless they're adding some other benefit, the only benefit after these changes is the increase in speed a high Manouver General can give. This could be useful in it's own right, but maybe not as useful as they were.
 

klingonadmiral

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Unless they're adding some other benefit, the only benefit after these changes is the increase in speed a high Manouver General can give. This could be useful in it's own right, but maybe not as useful as they were.

Doesn't maneuver also reduce the supply weight of an army? I found high maneuver generals quite useful when traversing vast regions of desolate terrain.