guide to royal marriages, personal unions and claim throne.

guide to royal marriages, personal unions and claim throne.

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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

atwix

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----->This guide is meant to clarify what your options are in the 7 possible situations that can present itself when a country has "disputed succession". I want to note that disputed succession is merely a go-ahead in this game, the rest you got to do and decide for yourself. This guide is accurate and updated as patches come and go.

----->This guide is for any country in the CHRISTIAN religious group. As of 1.8, any other religious group cannot get personal unions anymore! Christianity includes Protestantism, reformed, orthodox, Coptic and of course, catholic. Note that an event introduced in 1.12 can install a Christian personal union involving two neighboring/same culture/same dynasty nations. But its rare.

-----> AIM of this thread is to explain how to get more chances of installing a personal union over a country. A personal union is like making a country a vassal. They will join any wars you get into (defensive and offensive), and help you outside of their own borders as long as you keep liberty desire in check, and you can integrate them after 50 years if you manage to keep the requirements for continuing a PU active. You can make *any* monarchy government nation of your religion into a minor PU slave, even big blobbed FRANCE. How? Read on.

----->At the bottom of this thread is a growing list of tips that all matter in this game of thrones. Even the pope is involved, and converting Mecca to Christianity. Curious? Read on then. Feedback appreciated. Thanks!

-----> I wish to thank @David the Gnome, @Ternega, @Ceilingcat and all other contributors and all the other console testers who backed my theories up, proved them wrong, and helped creating thread. Thanks guys!


I wish to thank @Gtius for making beginner youtube guides that summarize this entire thread. the links are below.

Part 1

Part 2

----->Disclaimer: some explanations in this thread will likely be complex to read first time. Feel free to re-read or ask questions, or to give feedback. Give me PM if you want to use this information in your own forum, wiki or whatever before using it, thank you.

Chapter 1: Basic diplomatic actions

There are two diplomatic actions which can lead to a personal union.

1. Royal marriage: marry the target country. If target country goes into disputed succession, you might get heir of your dynasty on their throne or a succession war IF their ruler dies without an heir.

2. Claim throne: If you have a royal marriage and same dynasty with another country and they have a disputed succession (either no heir or an heir with low legitimacy) you can take the diplomatic action to claim their throne. This will only show as option if your prestige is equal or higher then the target nation. Taking this action will give a -50 relations penalty to all countries you have a royal marriage with, including a -100 penalty with the target nation. The biggest benefit from claiming a throne is that it gives you a claim throne casus belli to force the target country into a personal union for 84% war score, rather than hoping their same dynasty king will die without an heir. Since this casus belli always costs 84% war score, regardless of size, it's one of the best ways to gain large swathes of territory for little cost.

Important side note: claiming throne of any nation will ALWAYS make you defendant in possible succession war. So if a same dynasty partner has no heir and old ruler, and you see that (example) France will be defendant versus England over Spain, then CLAIM that throne of Spain if you are same dynasty. The succession war will now be YOU versus England.

Chapter 2: Teasers for game of thrones



You can declare a 'force union' war if you share dynasty with a nation that has no heir/weak claim heir.



I force Pu'd Poland here, who had The palatinate and Muscovy as PU subjects of their own. If you force PU a nation that has PU subjects of its own, you become the new overlord of all those nations!




---->Doing this game of thrones I got multiple greater powers as my minor PU subject, and I integrated them all.. In theory you can get all greater powers in Europe as your minor PU subject, and integrate them all. But since 1.12, it will cost enormous amounts of diplomacy points, unless you take the right idea groups and unless you have max administrative efficiency .

Of course, you ALSO need *luck* for this. A ton of it. But you'd be surprised how many greater powers go to disputed succession status sooner or later. The idea is to PREY for chances to spread dynasty or to force PU, to "force" getting lucky. Yeah, getting lucky in PU game can be 'forced' by a player who plays this game of thrones. I mean that playing this game actively will increase your chances by a boatload, which gives you more chance to get a PU, and more chance to get 'lucky'.

-----> Player that posted this in the thread. @bbqftw



+ Integrated Scandinavia. Holy crap they are the worst PU slave, they can't fight their way out of a wet paper bag and I had to park 30k troops there just to kill their rebels because of reformation.
Rating this guide 10/10 A+++++ would claim throne again
Chapter 3: General Tips and strategies to use in game of thrones

Before you read the detailed explanation on disputed succession options: some basic tips and things you must consider while doing game of thrones.

----->1. I want to note that the game of thrones in Europe is lot more complex then just disputed succession. This game of thrones is the hidden aspect of this game, that nevertheless can give you the most territory gain for a world conquest attempt with a European country. This game of thrones is so complex, and is influenced by so many game aspects that aren't obvious, that you got to conclude that paradox intended it this way. And many players completely overlook this aspect of the game.

----->2. Playing the claim throne and royal marriage game means keeping prestige at near hundred all the time. You can trade prestige to placate your vassal subjects (lowering their liberty desire) and you need the prestige to claim throne or to keep PU subjects (negative prestige gives PU subjects LD per point in negative!). Tough balance. You *have* to adapt your play style and keep conquest, liberty desire and rebels balanced. Humanism is a great idea group if you don't want rebels on your non accepted culture provinces. If you don't have higher prestige then the country you want to claim throne.. Then forget about it. If you want to claim throne of an ally you won countless wars with, this is of utmost importance! I once claimed throne at +96 prestige and target country (ally) had +90 (since he fought with me).. So watch that prestige. You can ask for 'end rivalry' in peace deals to farm prestige quick.

----->3.
Ever thought that a country got too strong when they gained a personal union with a greater power? Like France getting Spain as minor PU slave? Play this game, and castile could have been *your* slave. What the AI can do, so can you... Hope that's incentive enough

----->4. *important tip*: message settings are crucial for this game of thrones. First and foremost, and this might be the most neglected aspect of eu4. Hidden popup and pause messages that you can enable, that are off by default. I'll use some self made images to explain ;)






In message settings select "all" tab and enable the popup and pause for every herald possible for *every option" in the "to me", "from me", "interesting" and "other" categories.. You can select unpause also for each popup you get. Then you will get the popup, but game won't pause. In many cases, this isn't good idea. Like when battle starts, when army arrives and whatnot.

Then, in the window above the map buttons select your interesting countries. I usually select whole Europe, since you can't get PU over a country that isn't in your religion group. The result is that you can perfectly see when a new king comes to power, or when an event takes place that kills an heir of a country.
If you want to fine-tune the message settings without disabling stuff you don't like:

You can enable certain message types only for interesting category and other types for other. Select your interesting countries, and you will get the messages selected in "interesting" tab for those nations you made "interesting". All the other nations will go under "other" category, and you can enable/disable whatever in that tab.

As for the messages in the message box: if you click "send to log" in the message settings along with popup, you get both. But I never use the message box above minimap, as its WAY to easy to miss stuff there. But if you want to use it, set the according message types to "log". Up to you then if you want popup and pause for that message type as well. This can be handy when you accidentally click a popup away you didn't read. If its important, and if you set important stuff to show in the log as well, it will also be listed there.

You will never miss anything important happening in the world again.

Example: Enable minor and major event popup and pause for interesting countries, for any event they get. Why? *If* that interesting country has 40+ king with a regency heir for example, and the target county gets the event that might kill their heir, you can see the outcome right after. No more AI unions without you having a clue. It netted me, yet again, a pu over a greater power, England... Their king was 40+, their heir got sick, and it left me opening to RM England and install a noble of my throne. King died year after, and I used the cb gain to start force union war. It took me 14 years of loans, looming bankruptcy and sky high war exhaustion when he died, but I won. All because I started eyeing them month after month, waiting for my chance in the game of thrones.

You can then later disable the popup and pause for message types you don't like (like what country gives military access to another etc) by changing it in the popup window (options at right bottom). Some important popup you should enable for popup and pause: when armies arrive at destination, when country gets new king, major and minor events for you, and for interesting countries (prepare to read ton of stuff, you *can* disable this but you might miss out on easy dynasty spread chances when a country' heir dies due to event), diplomats arriving back home, traders arriving back home, what country gets succession war with another, when a country starts integrating a vassal and so on and so forth.

----->5. NOTE that heirs of a country *CAN* die during combat, sieging or just of natural cause AS WELL, and you will *not* receive a herald popup and pause for this. Here comes the disputed succession window in handy, to check if there's any heir dead that you missed (that a country went to disputed succession status without you getting notice from herald, I mean!) If you want to play this game: prepare to look at diplomacy of many countries frequently, or you might miss out on easy RM and dynasty spread partners!!


----->6. General Rules:

a) Player cannot be inherited. Instead, if there are no valid Contestants, then PU (otherwise SW) will happen.
b) Junior leading a PU herself cannot be PUd or get a succession war over her throne. A noble will rise either from the same dynasty (if there is one) or from RM partners; whichever is strongest. I.e. Aragon cannot be PUd while she has Naples under her. (yes, Castile can with the Iberian wedding event, but not otherwise)
Independant nations with only 15 provinces or fewer can be inherited. If they have more, the inheritance will revert to PU/SW
d) For PU or SW the size or the prestige of the Successor and/or the Contestant does not matter.
e) If a PU is contested, it will turn into an SW. An inheritance of independant nations can also switch to succession war if an eglible candidate to contest shows up.
f) If you fight a force union war, and the heirless country with your dynasty member also has minor PU countries... You will *also* get these nations as minor PU slave IF you force their overlord in a PU. As screenshot in the teaser chapter shows, I got Poland, Muscovy and a huge palatinate in one war, just because I force Pu'd the overlord.. For 980 prestige.
g) PU subjects only get liberty desire from their OWN development and army size (not from ALL the subjects combined like with vassals); they also get 1 liberty desire for each point overlord has negative prestige. 100 LD for -100 prestige. so farm prestige folks.

-----> 7
. War rules:

a) If Junior is at war, no PU/Inheritance/SW will happen. A noble will rise either from the same dynasty (if there is one) or from RM partners; whichever is strongest.
b) If Successor is at war with anyone but the Contestant -> instead of inheritance a PU/SW will happen.
c) If Successor is at war with the Contestant -> instead of a SW a PU will happen (the UI will display succession war...it's a bug).
d) If the Contestant is at war with the Successor -> popup will indicate the SW, you can click Go to War, but it won't work, your war will remain the same one you were in already. Thus you cannot enforce the PU under you, and the Junior won't join in the war. (also bug) You can however cancel the PU

-----> 8. I RMed an heirless country! (basics, its explained in more detail in chapter 5)

If you want to spread your dynasty, inherit/PU a country or fight a succession war for their throne, you have to start with an RM.
Pause the game and check the screen, one of these will be displayed:

a) A noble from some other house will succeed to the throne:

That other house is has more development than your country. You need to become stronger than them to install a noble from your dynasty.

b) A noble from your house will succeed to the throne:

You are the strongest/most developed of the RM partners, also the country is in T0. That lasts for 75 years, even though you don't know when that has started, there is a good chance that they will be in it for quite long time. That's fine, a dynasty spread is more than good of a reward!

c) Some other country will inherit them:

That other house is stronger than your country. Get more diplomatic reputation, stability and total development/province count. Also, hope that the monarch won't die just yet so the Tier can shift to T2 (so you can contest in a succession war).

d) You will inherit them:

Fantastic! That's T1, which - sadly - only lasts for 5 years. Also, you don't know when it has started, so you better start praying harder!

e) Personal Union under your country

Awesome! That's T1 or T2, or they share a dynasty with you. T2 lasts for 20 years, chances that they will be in it for 7 or so years. Either way, best of luck to you.

f) Succession War between some other country and some other country:

Get stronger, and do it fast! If they are of your dynasty, claim their throne and you will get to be defendant in the war.

g) Succession War between some other country and your country:

They are either in T1/T2 or they share a dynasty with you or them. Either case, you can contest the PU as the Attacker, so hope for the monarch to die and prepare for the fight.

h) Succession War between your country and some other country:

They are either in T1/T2 or they share a dynasty with you or them. You are the Successor (i.e. the Defender) so it should be an easy fight.
But that state will not stay like that forever, because Tier dates will be recalculated, so you have to be a bit active. Also, RMing a country with your dynasty is not always necessary.

----->9. Okay, what should I do and when?

It's up to you. Some play aggressively, some play conservatively, use your own style I can tell you a few guidelines though. Ofc, any king can die at the age of 25 or live beyond 90, so even with the most efficient strategy, you still won't be able to beat RNG.

PU subjects are best subjects you can ever have. They will field biggest armies, have best economy, and lowest liberty desire for their development.

so you can feed them their entire culture group, and still not see the need to integrate them, providing you grow in EQUAL size. At least feed PU subjects up to their state limit.

staying at war constantly prevents them from declaring independence. Keep a rival slot if you got a rebellious PU subject, and rival whoever is supporting the independence of the PU subject. Then just declare on your new rival with humiliate CB to make PU subject lose independence support.

I'd only integrate PU subjects in age of absolutism on 100% absolutism, and ONLY the ones that you cannot inherit naturally. So, the tiny ones should never be integrated. The only reason to integrate PU subjects earlier, is TRADE. For example.. if you play Savoy and you got Milan in a PU early on.. Then it might be better to integrate Milan ASAP to stop them from leeching trade income away.


Tips for every occasion:

- Pray...constantly
- Check the disputed succession alert often. It is your best friend!
- Check interesting and semi-interesting countries every January at the very least. A new Tier always start on the first of January. If you can catch a change in the rules, you know a new Tier has just started. With T1 lasting for 5 and T2 lasting for 20 years, you can have a nice window of opportunity. These outcomes are hardcoded and not based on luck. However Tier dates are, so always check the age of HRE Emperor and the Pope! If they are old, chances are that they will die. Why is that important?

note: Upon death of the Emperor, and upon a new Curia Controller country, the Tier dates will be recalculated. This can screw you over ... but this can also favor you. It is just coded like this.. Don't ask ME why

- Important: if a new Pope is chosen, but the CC country does not change, then there will be no change in Tier dates.
- Junior gaining/losing provinces also shift the Tier dates, but only by -1/+1 year per province respectively.
- If a Tier is not suitable for your needs, check HRE/CC. If they are old, then the Tier is about the change. You can keep RM or just break it accordingly.
- Always re-check countries after recalculation (in January) or after they won/lost a war, maybe a new possibility has opened up.
- Consider taking Diplomatic Idea Group for the lowered impact on stability from diplomatic actions, so you can break your ROMs without the Stability hit. Note, that the countries will still hate you for doing it.
- Consider taking Espionage for the Sabotage Reputation. I haven't tried it myself, so I cannot say how effective it is, but countries are less likely to RM countries they don't like. The less competition you have, the better. Also, less ROMs, means lower heir chance!!
- Have at least 30 provinces, so you can inherit all eligible countries.
- Do NOT RM countries that already lead a PU themselves! They cannot be PUd in any way (see General Rules). They can be inherited but the chances for that is very slim, and you best use your diploslots somewhere else. That being said, if you see an olds monarch for a country with PU to be inherited by someone else, just toss an RM. Break it though once the opportunity is gone.
- Once an heir appears, consider breaking the RM.
- Rivals of the Junior can contest the PU and force a Succession War. While you cannot make the Junior to rival you, but if you rival them, they might switch to you eventually. So try to chose countries for rivals that do not rival you. The more enemies you have, the more PUs you can contest.
- Keep War Rules in mind.

tips for keeping PU subjects from declaring independence/getting high liberty desire:

Hi, I Need some advice for my current game that screwed up within 2 months. I was able to contest a PU of Russia and England and forced Russia to be my lesser union partner. As Russia is a great power Nation and around same size as mine it is a big addition to my Country. But within two months after I won the war my ally France became also a lesser union partner of me. That is great but France is around double the size of me (most of France, most of Britain, most of Spain and Portuguese provinces plus American colonies) and has a huge army I couldn't defeat if it comes to independence war. So what can I do to secure these two big unions at the same time without getting kicked by them.
slap diplomat improve relations on them. get dip tech up. max diplo reputation with advisors. max legitimacy and spend mil points if needed.

farm prestige, as PU subjects get 1% ld for each point overlord is in negative prestige. -100 prestige is 100 LD in PU subject, so farm that prestige!

be at war constantly, and never be at peace for a day. Unions get -50 malus to declare independence if overlord (and them) are in a war.


If you own Cossacks dlc, you can conquer provinces near them, and then you can grant the conquered provinces with the subject window option. If the conquered provinces border them by land or sea zone, you can grant those provinces to them.
It will lower their liberty desire, and THEY got to attack the rebels that follow. Its a great way to weaken subjects.

And constant warfare (leading their armies around with 1k stack with attach on) will lower their army strength, which will all in all result in docile PU subjects.

If one of them goes above 50+% ld, then enable loyalist faction. You have to prevent PU subjects from allying, which they will do if one goes above 50%.

If someone supports their independence, then rival them and crush them with humiliate rival cb.
That's the best thing to do in 1.17. Keeping free rival slot for nations that support subject independence guarantees a CB to stomp those supporters the minute they support your PU subject independence.

-----> 10. disinheriting an heir can be quite useful. Marry a nation of the dynasty you want to obtain, and then disinherit your heir when your ruler gets old. Go to war then until your ruler dies, and a noble from the desired dynasty will ruler your nation, provided that nation is your biggest development RM partner. Note that you need to go to war until this happens, to avoid succession war over your nation! If you don't, you suddenly might end up as PU subject of France..

Chapter 4: General rule sets for entire in game mechanic

This chapter is dedicated to @Ceilingcat, who did tremendous job of delving into how some formulae in the mechanic get calculated, and how the game used some stuff to simulate some randomness into this 'game of thrones'.

Disclaimer:

If you want info only on what to do in this or that disputed succession, it might be better to skip to chapter 5, as what follows is quite complex!

The mechanics

When a monarch becomes heirless, one of the three rule sets will be activated: Tier0, Tier1 or Tier2. (Upon discovery I called them tiers, but now maybe Era would be a better word for them... for the sake of consistency I will keep calling them Tiers.)

In an unaffected world the
- T0 would start on 01.01.xx00 and it would last till 31.12.xx74 in every century. Active for 75 years.
- T1 would start on 01.01.xx75 and it would last till 31.12.xx79 in every century. Active for 5 years.
- T2 would start on 01.01.xx80 and it would last till 31.12.xx99 in every century. Active for 20 years.

This is a cycle, it never ends. Once T2 is over the next century would start with T0 again.

Something like this:



So if the monarch would die in 1504, the T1 rules would be active, while in 1532 the T0 would be in play.

Now, if you play a game, the above, default values are periodically shifted, so you should never know when have the currently active Tier started, or when will the next one start. You can however know (or guess) the currently active Tier and it's rule sets.

The Tier start dates will shift every time, when:

- a new HRE Emperor is crowned
- a new country is chosen to be the Curia Controller
- the observed country gets a new monarch (even Regency Councils count!)
- the observed country gains/loses provinces
- the observed country moves its capital

So the age of the monarch is not a factor in this. Obviously the best scenario for you, if the observed country is in T1 or T2 when the monarch is old. You have very little to none influence over this

Here be dragons, erm... some advanced stuff

The exact modifiers are:
- ID of the current HRE Emperor (*)
- ID of the current Curia Controller Country
- ID of the Junior's current Monarch (*)
- IDs of the Junior's previous Monarchs (*)
- ID of the Junior's Capital Province
- Junior's Number of Provinces
- Junior's Country ID

The ones marked with an asterix (*) are hidden values, only available in the memory or in the save game!
Even Ironman saves can be decompressed and the values checked. I haven't tried that, nor do I advise doing it.

The calculation:

Add up all the Modifiers, then truncate the result to the last 2 digits. Subtract this value:
- from 00 to get the T0 start date
- from 75 to get the T1 start date
- from 80 to get the T2 start date

If you get a negative value (remember, the century does not matter), just add +100 to it. So if you get a -36 value, then your Tier will start in xx64 every century.
(After calculation - relative to the old values - this reduction can be interpreted as an increase, i.e. pushing back by 80 years can look like a 20 year increase)

Suffice to say, its quite complex to calculate the tier date of the nation at this or that date. Maybe its more practical to just adapt to the succession status at hand.

What happens when a monarch becomes heirless?

Well, that depends on which Tier the monarch died!

Tier 0 (the default case):

a) no RM & no dynasty: local noble succeeds

b) RM & no dynasty:
- strongest RM member spreads her dynasty

c) No RM & dynasty:
- no valid Contestants exist: PU
- valid Contestant exists -> SW between Successor and Contestant) RM & dynasty:
- if other dynasty members are too weak -> strongest RM member spreads her own dynasty (i.e. Ryazan can't contest a dynasty spread from Austria over Muscovy)
- if at least 1 dynasty member is strong enough to block the spread -> SW between Successor and Contestant.

As said before: claiming throne will always make you defendant in succession war over same dynasty nation, even if you are smaller then the RM partners of the heirless same dynasty nation.

Tier 1 (the inherit case):

a) no RM & no dynasty:
- local noble succeeds

b) every other cases (RM & no dynasty / No RM & dynasty / RM & dynasty):
- strongest Successor will inherit if her number of provinces >= Junior's NoP * 2 AND Junior's NoP <= 15
- 2nd strongest Successor will inherit if her number of provinces >= Junior's NoP * 2 AND Junior's NoP <= 15
- succession war between them if neither qualifies for the above (even if there are more RM partners with enough NoP)
- not enough NoP and no valid Contestants exist -> PU
- not enough NoP and valid Contestant exists -> SW between Successor and Contestant

Tier 2 (the instant PU case):

a) no RM & no dynasty: local noble succeeds

b) every other cases (RM & no dynasty / No RM & dynasty / RM & dynasty):
- no valid Contestants exist: PU
- valid Contestant exists -> SW between Successor and Contestant
"Junior" is the junior partner of your future PU
"Successor" is the strongest of: Junior's dynasty members and Junior's RM partners
"Contestant" is the strongest of: Junior's dynasty members and Junior's RM partners and Junior's rivals

Note: Non-Monarchy Rivals and Rivals not following any of the Christian denominations are invalid and they will be disregarded. I.e. catholic Austria can be the Successor for the orthodox Muscovy PU, and while Muscovy's rival the orthodox but republic Novgorod cannot be a Contestant, the rival protestant Prussia can be. That's right, some republics CAN contest a succession. Dutch republic is good example.

The exact calculation for the "strongest" is not clear, but all points to the 3rd page of the Ledger. The higher the Adm./Dip./Mil. Rank & Rating, the stronger your country is. Note that the overall ranking does not seem to matter though, as you can be rank 3 but if your Dip. rank is very low, even the 5th country can get ahead of you for the Succession. Its either this, or military rating of nations. Or a mix of both. Needs some testing still.


Chapter 5: Disputed succession, what to do in each situation


There are 7 possible situations for a country that has disputed succession. All 7 can have different outcome, depending whether or not you decide to step in the game of obtaining personal unions.

A. No dynasty, no heir
B. No dynasty, weak heir / regency
C. Same dynasty, no heir
D. Same dynasty, weak heir / regency
E. succession war as defender/attacker
F. You inherit the throne
G. Interregnum


Check this link to see it in imgur image format:



Here is detailed description of what your options are in the previously given 7 situations.


OPTION A : You do not share a dynasty. They have no heir.

AIM is to put your dynasty on foreign monarchy throne to open up future possibilities, or to get succession wars over countries. Aim of YOUR nation is to gain the highest development possible; it gives your nation lot more chance to get a dynasty spread in other (greater power) nations.

Basic rule of thumb (very important!):If you become highest total EFFECTIVE development nation of all RM partners of a nation, you will deliver a noble of your dynasty to become ruler of that nation, if their old ruler dies heirless.

The total THEORETICAL development of your country is shown in the country tab of the ledger. The total EFFECTIVE development deducts the percentage of local autonomy OFF the total development value of your provinces, and then adds it all up.

I bet you say "eeeeehhh.... what?" now....

I'll elaborate.

The development of a province is the sum of its base tax, base production and base manpower. A country's total THEORETICAL development is the sum of all of its provinces' development values. You can see this value in the Country tab of the ledger.

So, local autonomy deducts a fair part of this number, giving the real TOTAL EFFECTIVE DEVELOPMENT. This total effective development is what determines who supplies the new king for an heirless throne, out of all RM partners. You can see the effective development of your nation if you hover over the cost of embracing an institution in the relevant window.

BUT since the autonomy of provinces is taken into account, the number is just a guideline. Anyhow, the idea is to get more development then other RM Partners of your target heirless nation. If you see another RM partner of them is delivering new noble to their heirless RM partner... Then BLOB more, or develop yourself, or lower autonomy in high development provinces that have high autonomy (in case of an almost tie in development between nations, might not be good idea overall). This will make YOUR nation the one that delivers new noble kings of your dynasty in foreign monarchies you married into.

After this rule of thumb, I'll just refer to total development as the rule, to keep it easy!

1. General advice in step A:

Check if they have an other RM. Check what will happen upon Monarch's death to get the active Tier.

---> if they have no other RM then do RM to test the waters..

---> they are in T0 & you are not allied to them:

if you can beat her alliances, then RM to get a dynasty, claim Throne ASAP and start the war. Force the Union.
if you cannot beat the alliances, still RM them but only if you don't want to expand in their territory later.

---> they are in T0 & you are allied to them:

might as well RM them as well, a dynasty spread is always nice.
Keep in mind that since patch 1.14, breaking an alliance gives 5 years of truce, so for the old 'spread dynasty-claim throne-go war' tactic you would have to break truce.

---> they are in T1 or T2

RM ASAP. Keep in mind that the tier can shift any year, and on HRE/CC change. Revaluate your strategy if needed.

Important note: It is POSSIBLE that you will get a personal Union for free, even with a greater power, if the heirless nation is in Tier 2 and IF no one contests the Union. You need luck to be in tier 2 with heirless nation for this to happen, but it IS possible.

---> they are heirless and hostile (rm not possible): if you can RIVAL the nation with ld ruler and no heir, rivaling them might trigger a succession war, where the player will get popup to contest a succession as AGRESSOR in the succession war. More details further in the guide, in chapter 5 under succession war section.

If you do a marriage with a greater power: If you start as a tiny nation in Europe, you have almost no chance to install a noble of your house on a greater power throne (since you lack high development), UNLESS you are the only RM partner of that greater power. Once you DO blob or develop (play tall), your chances to install a noble on your greater power RM partners ruler death will be lot higher. Develop your nation or expand and check if your development is higher then other RM partners of an heirless nation.


So, try to send royal marriage offers and later on "offer alliance" offers to as many greater powers in 1444 and beyond. Once you become big and have a big development, you will see your chances to install a noble anywhere rise, even in greater power nations.

Example: As Savoy I got alliance with burgundy and Austria in 1445, and with Spain and England after I got positive opinion with them thx to bashing France (their rivals) up. You can even get Muscovy as ally if you obtain a province close enough (examples are: DOW on Genoa or any Black Sea country, or DOW a Baltic Sea country like Riga in 1444).

2. To get succession wars in step A, it is VITAL that you set a powerful country as rival.

Why? Because then they can rival you back also, if they didn't already. Why is this important?

The nations that set YOUR NATION or the HEIRLESS NATION as rival can contest succession, among others( more on that later). Bottom-line is: it is usually a nation that set YOUR nation as rival that eventually contests.

England, France or a blobbed Russia will do. If no big nation set you as rival, its more rare to get succession wars in this stage.

Conclusion: Succession war is the easiest way to get free PU subjects in step A and in general (apart from getting a FREE PU with just RM done, which can happen if heirless nation is in tier 2).. so setting a powerful rival helps, cause they can then rival you back (if they didn't already).
I'll say it again, cause this is quite important: it is entirely possible to get succession wars over a country with no heir -that is NOT of your dynasty but with whom you ONLY got a RM with- IF there is a nation willing to aggressively contest the succession ( a big powerful nation like France, who rivaled you or the heirless nation, for instance) or IF the heirless nation is in tier 2.


Note that rivaling a nation without an heir might make your nation legible to CONTEST their succession in a succession war, as aggressive contestant, with the popup. More on that in succession war part of the guide.

3. Possible outcomes in step a:


a) What can be the result of all of this?:

If a ruler dies heirless in a RM partner, you get chance to get a personal union with a succession war, IF
-------->1). a country with the same dynasty as the target OR nations that rivaled YOU or heirless nation OR your RM partners OR the RM partners of the heirless nation qualify to contest you over the right to have the nation as minor PU subject AND 2). target nation must be at peace.

If no succession war triggers, the default result is that a 20 year old heirless noble, of the dynasty of the largest total development RM partner, will become the king of the target country.

b) requirements for a good outcome for your nation

-------> 1). You have higher total development then the other royal marriage partners of the heirless country and/or 2.) if no bigger greater power can contest the succession in any way, as stated above.

"a xxxxyan noble succeeds to the throne" it will say, if you look at what the outcome of succession will be, in their diplomacy window. If they produce an heir, your chances for this are removed. You may not start a war to create a union, until you are in step C

------>After a noble of your dynasty took throne you are in STEP C with that nation. you are able to claim throne and do force PU war immediately (the new noble king will start as heirless, after all)!
Prepare for that, if you wait too long, the nation might get an heir again.

c) Important notes:

------>The succession status ITSELF can shift from succession war to your dynasty noble becoming king (if you got RM with the nation), or another noble from another RM partner, if the target country goes to war... So warn all countries that can drag them in and the country itself! Usually succession wars of this type involve tiny countries that also had RM with the heirless king nation, or small rivals of the heirless king country. You will seldom see greater powers that step into aggressive wars involving small countries with disputed succession, since they don't care about forcing tiny countries into a minor PU situation with them. Situation changes if country is bigger or if the disputed country is a dynasty partner, or a rival of them. HRE emperor is exception, that nation will meddle in all succession wars inside HRE.


------>if you got 4+ royal marriages (6 total gives +10 bonus % chance of this happening!) you can get the event that places an heir of your dynasty on their throne (event is called "marriage policies pay off" link from eu3 wiki: http://www.paradoxian.org/eu3wiki/Marriage_Policies_Pay_Off and ). I have seen this event trigger for an heirless burgundy. Funny, the comment on the event says: "take that, von Habsburgs!" Very appropriate indeed, if you can stop the Burundian inheritance event this way. Note (thx Thund91) that your heir actually needs to make it to the throne, or you won't get a dynasty spread. If a noble of your house does get their throne, you officially made a dynasty!!! But I'm getting ahead of myself, that is possibility C.

-----> disinheriting an heir can be quite useful. Marry a nation of the dynasty you want to obtain, and then disinherit your heir when your ruler gets old . Go to war then until your ruler dies, and a noble from the desired dynasty will ruler your nation, provided that nation is your biggest development RM partner. Note that you need to go to war until this happens, to avoid succession war over your nation! If you don't, you suddenly might end up as PU subject of France..
but remember: farm prestige, as PU subjects get 1% ld for each point overlord is in negative prestige. -100 prestige is 100 LD in PU subject, so farm that prestige!

4. Consort mechanic strategies (thought up by @Badesumofu)

----->try to marry other countries as a new ruler comes to power. That gives you a 50% chance to get the consort. You can then look at their opinion of you and look for 'consort ties', that indicates you got the consort. Then you need that country to settle on a weak claim heir, and then you need the ruler to die before that weak claim heir is 15 - then you have consort regency of your dynasty and a weak claim heir - since you initiated the PU it will still be in effect allowing you to Claim Throne. Note that it doesn't matter what happens dynastically once you declare the war. You might get a notification that you lost your claim but don't worry, you can still enforce it in the peace.

Note that I'm not suggesting that this is a better use of an RM than simply marrying a country with a old ruler and no heir. It is just another way to possibly get a PU. You need to keep an eye on the target to see if the conditions are on their way to being met - like if they get a weak claim heir with good stats - so you can prepare. Break any alliance you have with them, try to look for how you can strip them of any other allies.

----->The other thing you might think to look for would be a weak claim heir in a country with no consort - that will be rare as any time a country gets an heir without there being a consort, a consort is generated alongside the heir. Of course consorts can die, so it might happen. You would need to establish whether or not they have a consort by looking for that opinion modifier - see if they like some other country because of consort ties. Even then, they might have a domestic consort so this method is not very likely to yield anything. The main issue here is that it is quite difficult to tell if a country has a consort or not. Hence why I aim to send the offer immediately when a new ruler comes to power since new rulers never come to power with a consort.

----->It works in both directions. Basically when the game checks to see what a country's dynasty is, it just checks the name of the current ruler. So if you are in a consort regency, you can claim throne on any nation with the dynasty of your consort. This allows you to PU, for example, Von Habsburgs without actually having that dynasty in a permanent way on your own throne. Or if you are trying for a reverse dynasty swap but you get a new heir with good stats while your ruler is 70 you can just keep them if you have the right consort since that will give you a temporary reverse dynasty swap for the regency. Also useful if you actually want to keep your own dynasty for some reason you can just temporarily borrow another dynasty to PU someone (which does not have to be the person you actually got the consort from, of course).

Conclusion: consorts open up *a lot* of new options alongside disinherit and abdicate. These new mechanics were overall a massive buff to Monarchies both in raw power potential and in how interesting they are to play.

important sidenote: if a consort regency is active in your highest development rm partner, the dynasty of the CONSORT is rigged to spread into YOUR nation or others if your ruler or another rm partner dies heirless. This is really silly, but its the rule.

OPTION B : You do not share a dynasty. They have a weak heir. Basically, do nothing in this situation, unless a consort of YOUR dynasty is regent for any weak claim heir. You can actually claim throne then, and start force PU war!

OPTION C: You share a dynasty (meaning a noble of your country took throne after their king died heirless; or a noble from your dynasty took throne after RM with third country with your dynasty (complex!)).

If a same dynasty country has ruler who dies without heir, then total effective development of dynasty partners determines who gets PU over same dynasty member.. If same dynasty partner is bigger in effective development then the RM partners of the heirless same dynasty nation, then a free PU can occur. If RM partners of the heirless same dynasty nation are BIGGER then you, then a succession war can occur as described in step A. But there is a solution for this, to become defendant in possible SW over any same dynasty nation.. Claim their throne!

Important side note: claiming throne of any nation will ALWAYS make you defendant in possible succession war. So if a same dynasty partner has no heir and old ruler, and you see that (example) France will be defendant versus England over Spain, then CLAIM that throne of Spain if you are same dynasty. The succession war will now be YOU versus England. If a smaller dynasty country has RM, same dynasty AND claims the throne, then it will switch to that country. The AI never seems to do that, but the PLAYER can.

The DEFAULT outcome between same dynasty nations is that small dynasty members become PU subject to a really big same dynasty member IF the big dynasty member has at least twice the development/number of provinces and IF the small dynasty nation sees its ruler dying without heir. More or less.

A succession war can occur too, if someone contests this peaceful transition. Succession war can occur I step A, and in step C.

But there are more options in step C.

1. The player can claim throne and do force personal Union war IF the same dynasty nation is heirless.

---> If you are allied to same dynasty nation and they are heirless:

that's too bad. You would get 5 years truce if you break the alliance, so while you could start the war for the Union, but that would mean a ton of Aggressive Expansion. Consider monarch age and your situation.

---> AE is not an issue and it's worth it: go for it!

---> AE is a problem & you would get them in a PU, or Succession war:

up to your style. Personally I would wait if the monarch is old enough; and break alliance if he/she isn't likely to die soon.

---> AE is a problem & the war for succession would go without you:

oh my... break alliance, prepare for war and claim the throne once the truce runs out. It can't get worse anyway.

---> you are not allied:

I hope you don't have truce either. Claim the Throne, start the war, force the PU. Keep in mind that the claim throne option and the casus belli will go away if they get a proper heir. But once you start the war, an appearance of a new heir becomes irrelevant; you can force the PU even if the CB is gone.


Anyways, I got PM asking me questions about this situation C, so I'll give example on how you can get chance to get succession war or chance to claim throne of an heirless country of your dynasty; a country you (maybe) never had RM with. Yes, it can happen. After all, the heirless king is desperate for an heir, right? *grin*


2. example of a situation between same dynasty nations:

Austria can get the opportunity to install a Habsburg on the throne of Hungary with an event. They did. A Habsburg now rules Hungary.

Lets take the example that you are Byzantium as a human player, you managed to survive vs. Ottomans, because you had alliance and RM with Poland and Hungary. Your king dies heirless. A Habsburg noble succeeds to your throne, since HUNGARY had most development of all your RM partners. Byzantium is now part of the Habsburg DYNASTY. The Habsburg dynasty spread, because you had RM with Hungary, who also had Habsburg ruler. Are you still with me?

..All goes well, you win some wars vs. Ottomans. You rake in the prestige. Meanwhile, Austria gets slaughtered by France, their prestige is dropping fast. Even the position of emperor might go to Bohemia. You now have higher prestige then Austria.

...You don't quite care as Byzantium, you got your own problems versus the infidels...
BUT (and here the plot thickens!!)...

Austria, the *emperor* of the HRE, has a 68 year old king and his 45 year old heir dies to hunting accident. Their king, of your dynasty (this is what its all about, this game of thrones) has NO heir all of sudden. If you are highest total development nation of your dynasty (the patriarch so to speak) then you can get a succession war or an instant PU over the heirless country of your dynasty, without having royal marriage! Or, you may claim the throne of Austria if you manage to secure a quick royal marriage with Austria! (shouldn't be *that* hard). You can claim the throne because you have high prestige and Austria has lot lower prestige.

if the emperor dies heirless, YOU may get chance to get Austria as a minor PU slave (with a force union war, or through a succession war, or by peaceful transition of the heirless nation into PU subject of a dynasty partner), emperor or not, greater power or not. Yeah that's right. Game of thrones!

3. Requirements for a good outcome for your nation

----->If a king dies without an heir, you get a personal union, right of the bat, no war involved, if:

they are really small country with your dynasty and your total development is high enough versus theirs, and no one can or will contest the succession. Note that it is also possible you straight inherit a nation like this then, if your diplomatic reputation is high enough.


4.The only options in step C to get greater powers as minor PU slave are:

a) You got same dynasty as them, you have a lot more total development, and no nation will contest the succession outcome. You don't even need RM or Alliance; it happens automatically IF you are big enough in development versus them.

b) doing a force union war *after* doing royal marriage/claiming the throne of an heirless dynasty country. You have to start this war before they get a strong heir, or the casus belli gets removed. If they get weak claim heir, you keep the casus belli until that weak king ascends and creates strong heir of his own.

c) This can happen in step A and C... You got royal marriage with dynasty partner of anyone, but some powerful nation that qualifies (like Austria vs. England, or France vs. Spain) will wage succession war when your noble ascends to their throne. So, succession war over greater power is possible even without having dynasty (and just a rm done) with them IF your nation or the heirless nation set powerful nations as rival. As said before in option A, but I just repeat it here

d) The diplomacy window for an heirless greater power says you will get a succession war. If you are aggressive claimant (your country is listed RIGHT: XXX vs. you)you can aggressively steal the greater power away from whoever gets the greater power as minor PU subject when the king dies heirless. You will get popup if you want to start a succession war. Think carefully before accepting, as the defending nation who gets the PU can also call in all their allies.

e) The diplomacy window for an heirless greater power says you will be the defensive side (your country is listed LEFT: you vs. XXX) and you get the country as minor PU subject at the start of the succession war. Note that the aggressive claimant can back down if you are more powerful, and you will get PU right off the bat. The AI Always attacks though, even if its suicide..

f) You got same dynasty as heirless country, and you decide to claim throne after a royal marriage. You decide you do NOT want FORCE PU war. IF the ruler of the claimed throne dies heirless, you will get the PU for free. That's right. FREE!

5. side notes regarding claim throne and examples of STEP C situations

----->Claiming throne is not needed *always*; Claim when king is young when you are confident you can do a force Union war. Do it when king is old (see below) if not. Just make sure that you got max diplo relation modifier (+100) with countries before you got RM with before claiming throne of a third country, as you will get -50 relation penalty with anyone you got royal marriage with for claiming a foreign throne with royal marriage mechanic. And -100 relation relation penalty with the country you claim on. But this malus opinion will tick away fast.

Conclusion: you don't need to claim throne whenever you can; rather wait for the best time to do so. CLAIM the throne when your dynasty noble ascends to throne in foreign nation and if you feel confident that you can win a force Union war OR if their king is 50 or 60+ and heirless.

Bottom-line is: Chances to get greater powers as minor PU slave are few , and you don't want someone else getting them under their thumb. So think carefully what the best approach is. If you are in a weak position still, without greater power allies, claim when if their heirless king is 40+ and not lucky nation, or when has few RM. If its lucky nation or if the nation has a LOT of RM, 50-60 years heirless king might be better time to claim. IF you are big and confident, just claim throne when your noble ascends to the throne and start force union war the month after you claimed throne.

Why? Cause the older a ruler is, and the fewer RM their nation has, the fewer chance the nation/ruler has to get an heir the normal way, without event. Even a 70+ heirless king can get heir the normal way....If they produce a strong claim heir after you press claim throne, your claim is removed.
Weak heirs (that usually spawn by dynastic event) will let you keep the force union CB.

You receive casus belli to start a force PU war if you claim throne while they got no heir, and you may force a union by war. If they produce a strong claim heir BEFORE you begin that war, you lose the chance to obtain the casus belli by claiming their throne. IF they produce an heir AFTER you start that force PU war, it will not matter... So *START* the war the minute someone of your dynasty seizes a throne, even if you are NOT prepared and even if it means taking a stab hit. If the target country is a greater power, this is almost obligatory. Just go all out on loans and mercenaries, these wars can be the beginning of a world conquest attempt if done before 1500.


Right. Are you still with me? I know this is heavy stuff.. Some examples now of step C situations.

----->An example of a peaceful transition: country A having dynasty with country B, country B' king dies heirless, and country B has RM with country A. If a dynasty in one country dies out, that country becomes minor PU slave to the dynasty country with highest total development of all other dynasty partners. Usually peaceful transition is done between a big country and a really small country that's close them. Example: Muscovy getting peaceful PU over Ryazan or Yaroslavl. Or god forbid, the other way around.

----->An example of an enemy of the heirless country being able to contest succession without having RM: Poland spread its dynasty to Muscovy. The king of Muscovy dies without an heir. Poland is rightful claimant, due to having RM with dynasty member, but Sweden can contest this, since they are a rival of Poland. Succession war will decide if Muscovy goes under Poland or Sweden as minor PU slave. More on succession war later on.

------>Another important note: You can get Union over another same culture/dynasty neighbor nation now BY EVENT, without a war.
Note that an event introduced in 1.12 can install a Christian personal union again involving two neighboring/same culture/same dynasty nations. But its rare.


# Offer Personal Union
country_event = {
id = dynastic_events.5
title = dynastic_events.5.t
desc = dynastic_events.5.d
picture = DIPLOMACY_eventPicture

trigger = {
has_heir = no
government = monarchy
is_subject = no
ruler_age = 16
NOT = {
ruler_age = 40
}
any_neighbor_country = {
government = monarchy
has_heir = no
ruler_age = 16
NOT = {
ruler_age = 40
}
NOT = {
OR = {
has_opinion_modifier = {
who = ROOT
modifier = opinion_spurned_pu
}
reverse_has_opinion_modifier = {
who = ROOT
modifier = opinion_spurned_pu
}
}
}
OR = {
AND = {
is_female = no
ROOT = {
is_female = yes
}
}
AND = {
is_female = yes
ROOT = {
is_female = no
}
}
}
OR = {
dynasty = ROOT
culture_group = ROOT
}
has_opinion = { who = ROOT value = 75 }
reverse_has_opinion = { who = ROOT value = 75 }
is_subject = no
}
}

mean_time_to_happen = {
months = 500
}

option = {
name = dynastic_events.5.a
random_neighbor_country = {
limit = {
government = monarchy
has_heir = no
ruler_age = 16
NOT = {
ruler_age = 40
}
OR = {
AND = {
is_female = no
ROOT = {
is_female = yes
}
}
AND = {
is_female = yes
ROOT = {
is_female = no
}
}
}
OR = {
dynasty = ROOT
culture_group = ROOT
}
has_opinion = { who = ROOT value = 75 }
reverse_has_opinion = { who = ROOT value = 75 }
is_subject = no
}
country_event = {
id = dynastic_events.6
tooltip = dynastic_events.6.t
}
}
}

option = {
name = dynastic_events.5.b
add_legitimacy = 10
}
}

# Personal Union Offered
country_event = {
id = dynastic_events.6
title = dynastic_events.6.t
desc = dynastic_events.6.d
picture = DIPLOMACY_eventPicture

is_triggered_only = yes

option = {
name = dynastic_events.6.a
add_legitimacy = 20
FROM = {
set_country_flag = dyn_pu_accepted_flag
create_union = ROOT
country_event = {
id = dynastic_events.7
tooltip = dynastic_events.7.t
}
}
}

option = {
name = dynastic_events.6.b
FROM = {
set_country_flag = dyn_pu_refused_flag
add_opinion = {
modifier = opinion_spurned_pu
who = ROOT
}
add_casus_belli = {
target = ROOT
type = cb_insult
months = 12
}
country_event = {
id = dynastic_events.7
tooltip = dynastic_events.7.t
}
}
}
}

# A Political Marriage - Accepted or Not?
country_event = {
id = dynastic_events.7
title = dynastic_events.7.t
desc = dynastic_events.7.d
picture = DIPLOMACY_eventPicture

is_triggered_only = yes

option = {
name = dynastic_events.7.a
trigger = {
has_country_flag = dyn_pu_accepted_flag
}
add_legitimacy = 20
tooltip = {
create_union = FROM
}
}

option = {
name = dynastic_events.7.b
trigger = {
has_country_flag = dyn_pu_refused_flag
}
tooltip = {
add_opinion = {
modifier = opinion_spurned_pu
who = FROM
}
add_casus_belli = {
target = FROM
type = cb_insult
months = 12
Both rulers must be between 16 and 40, the two nations involved must be neighbors, both nations must have no heirs, both rulers have to be of different sex and be either of the same dynasty or in the same culture group. Both nations need to have high enough opinion with each other. The MTTH of the start is 500 months. Portugal can get a UNION over Spain this way, Or Styria can get a Union over Austria.


OPTION D : You share a dynasty. They have a weak heir or a regency council FOR a weak heir.

You may claim the throne. You receive casus belli to start a war when you do a claim, and may force a union. If the king dies and the heir ascends, you will lose the casus belli and the claim to the throne once the heir makes a strong claim heir OR if a consort regency triggers. This seems buggy, but its the way it works.

solution: don't claim their throne until the heir is 15 to avoid losing claim to consort regency.

OPTION E : Succession war..

This is the most complex part of the game of thrones that eluded even the specialists of this forum for months. What comes next is my opinion of how it works, after input of many console testers who backed up or proved my assumptions wrong.

You, and several legible nations are interested in the succession of a target monarchy, with no heir. If the ruler there dies without an heir, you usually see a noble of your house seize their throne, if you have RM with that country and if you have highest development total of all their RM partners.

But if those other nations qualify to contest the outcome of this disputed succession in the heirless monarchy, then you get a succession war.

Military rating of nations or score of nations comes into play here. RULE OF THUMB: Among all possible aggressive claimants in a succession war (meaning your RM partners, the RM partners of the heirless nation, the nations that set YOU or the heirless nation as rival, and other nations with your dynasty): the nation with highest military rating/score gain and/or highest effective development (or a mix of the two combined in some obscure formulae) will get popup if they want to contest a succession aggressively in a succession war. Its not clear how aggressive claimant is chosen among all the possible nations unfortunately. But its likely a mix of the above.

Part 2 of this guide is a couple of posts below this or use link: https://forum.paradoxplaza.com/foru...unions-and-claim-throne.788829/#post-17713470
 

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drake546

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Very interesting write up. I wish paradox was more open about the game mechanics for personal unions.

*important tip*: enable the popup and pause for *every country* that gets new king. Put every country your interested in for personal unions in "interested" category, and no other countries( put all other countries as default for these kinda messages, or you will get event messages of every country across the globe!). Enable minor and major event popup and pause for interesting countries, for any event they get. Why? *If* that interesting country has 40+ king with a regency heir for example, and the target county gets the event that might kill their heir, you can see the outcome right after. No more AI unions without you having a clue. It netted me, yet again, a pu over a greater power, england... I started war after preying for their monarch' death, took me 14 years of loans, looming bankruptcy and sky high war exhaustion, but i won. All because i started eyeing them month after month, waiting for my chance to claim throne.
How do you enable this?
 
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Darkath

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F : You share a dynasty. I don't know the exact conditions, but you inherit the throne, bypassing a personal union completely. You will simply absorb the target country and receive immediate cores on all their provinces and colonial nations (not 100% sure on this) and i think their vassals will be set free (again, not 100% sure). I think this can happen if the target country you got RM with is small enough versus yours. i don't know the exact conditions for inheriting a throne. I always assumed (as the succession tooltip for normal minor PU partners says) that it has to do with your size and your diplomatic reputation. If both are high, you can get inheritances of small countries quicker.

I think it's the same condition that allow you to annex a country in one war. IE if the BT total of the country you get a PU with is small enough, you inherit it directy without going through the PU phase. This happens for instance when France get a PU over Brittany.
 

heliostellar

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Very interesting write up. I wish paradox was more open about the game mechanics for personal unions.



How do you enable this?
It should be under your Message Settings. There are a ton of messages that you can enable that are not by default.
 

TimFisher

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How do you control whether a country is "interesting" or not for the message settings?
 

User4035

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How come no one has commented on this?
I'm reading through it but its hard to follow.
Ideally a utube video would be best to show what your talking about.

OPTION B : You do not share a dynasty. They have a weak heir. You may claim the throne. This is pointless and you will get nothing.
The event that places an heir of your dynasty on their throne can still fire though if their weak claim heir is still in regency, replacing their weak claim heir with a strong one of your dynasty.
This part kinda made me mad. Claiming the throne does nothing. So why is it even there paradox?

Edit: Also I've been mad at paradox ever since the diplomatic reputation change and the overall changes to diplomacy ideas, which totally ruined playing Austria. So while I'm sitll interested in this personal union guide, I've lost the drive.
 
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Thund91

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Good write-up Atwix, but I have a few comments I think you should add. I tested this myself before, especially in my recent Bohemia game.

1. A country who is war leader, will NEVER end up as a junior partner in a personal union. I, as Bohemia, claimed the throne of Hesse, who had an old ruler (53) and no heir. I had Hohenzollern or w/e Dynasty. It changed from a noble from my dynasty to a succession war between me and Brandenburg after I claimed the throne. This was good, HOWEVER, as soon as Hesse got involved in a war, it again switched to "a noble from Hohenzollern succeeds," and this has been true in all the cases where I've claimed the throne or when there was peace and the partner got involved in a war and then it switched again. This also brings me to my next point...

2. In my game, the 53 year old Hesse ruler managed to produce an heir after a couple of years. Idk if you just have godly luck, but 40+ is still very early to spam claim throne, especially with countries who have multiple royal marriages or are lucky nations. I'd recommend upping the age requirement to claiming the throne in your guide.

3. I also don't know if you mentioned this in your guide, but the "marriage policies pay off" event target will NOT have your same dynasty until that heir succeeds. Idk if you mentioned this or not. If so, then nevermind.

I think that's all for now. Good write-up either way.
 
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clownwolf

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I think forcing a union also gives you 1 AE for every base tax of the target country. I force PU'ed the commonwealth near the end of my HRE game and it game me 350 Agressive Expansion. I'm not exaggerating.
 

atwix

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part 2 of the guide:


But what is military rating exactly?

Military rating evaluates the land warfare capabilities of a country.
Modifier Rating

Mil Tech +0.2 per Technology level.
Mil ideas +0.1 per idea + +0.25 per bonus.
Generals +0.025 per pip for each general or conquistador (counting rulers/heirs). Max 5.00.
Military quality +0.15 per +5% combat ability (sum of all types).
Discipline +0.15 per +5%.
Soldiers [Unknown]
Morale of armies +0.5 per point.
War exhaustion -0.2 per point.
So, you might need military ideas filled, big military tech, high discipline, high morale and lot of good tier 3 generals to qualify to contest a succession. Its sounds like only military nations can contest. But nations with HUGE pips on generals have HUGE military rating (can get +5 bonus with generals alone!)


What can you conclude out of this? Nations who pick military ideas get more military rating then nations who don't. A (lucky) nation with military ideas, with full manpower pool, with big manpower pool due to provinces owned and large standing army led by god general pool will usually have the highest military rating. AKA France? England, Austria, Muscovy etc. Note that score might play role too.

Result? Its usually always the same nations that contest successions. In western Europe France, Austria and England contest successions a lot. In eastern Europe Muscovy/Russia contests everything since they have huge force limit army and HUGE manpower pool thanks to national traditions. This changed a bit in 1.10 and beyond. It seems Europe situations can get wonky and you will see more unusual PU situations and succession wars now.

IMPORTANT TIP: So, if you want to provoke succession wars, its good idea to set England, France or a blobbed Muscovy as rivals IF they didn't rival you yet. Nations that set YOU as rival will be part of the contestant pool then, giving you chance for free PU with just a RM done!! As said before, only nations that rivaled YOU or the heirless nation count. Rivaling France won't do, they have to rival YOU if they want to be able to contest.


I'll repeat it once again: a succession war can occur in step A with JUST a royal marriage done, IF a high military rating nation or anyone else qualifies to contest the succession. But it can also happen in step C. Usually a same dynasty partner attacks you then.

Important note: All this may be overruled by factors that make a succession war impossible, such as the target being at war or leading a personal union of its own.

Right.. Once again, are you still with me? I know its all very complex

I just explained HOW a succession war can be caused; now I'll explain how the mechanic of a succession war itself works.

1. HOW does succession war work practically?


----->A succession war can trigger if there are 2 sides who can contest the succession meaning:


1. rightful defensive claimant (rightful meaning as in 1. they got RM and/or same dynasty with heirless country or 2. NO rm with heirless country but they got highest total development of all dynasty partners)

2. unrightfully aggressive claimants (a country with the same dynasty as the target OR nations that set your nation or the heirless nation as rival OR your RM partners OR the RM partners of the heirless nation) that can get involved in a succession war.

If the ruler dies without an heir: then a succession war might begin automatically on the same day IF someone qualifies to contest. The most powerful country (meaning the country with highest military rating of the pool of nations that qualify to contest succession) will get popup if they want to enforce their "unrightfully claim" with a war. Note that this means that if *you* got the RM or dynasty with the contested country, this unrightfully claimant might DOW you to take the minor PU slave away from you.. And there will be NO popup, the succession war will start OUT OF THE BLUE when their heirless king dies and you *cannot* get out of it, no popup asking if you want to deny or something like that. It will ALWAYS be a surprise when this happens.

since 1.19, the AI ACTIVELY goes for the wargoal in succession wars, if they are the attacker in a succession war. If a minor gets a PU through succession war, and a greater power contests it, they will now FIGHT for all the warscore they need to STEAL the union away.


2. Regarding the two nations who will fight in a succession war:

if the tooltip in the diplomacy window of the heirless nation says 'succession war versus X and Y', then X is the defender and Y is the attacker.



a) the DEFENDER (the rightful defensive claimant (who had RM or dynasty share with the country and highest total development) gets the pu after a RM with target country or after their king of your dynasty dies without heir (no rm needed in this situation). The heirless country will become your minor PU slave at start of the war, but you (together) need to fight a rival/other claimant over the right to have the country as a minor PU slave. All your allies get call to war when this aggressive claimant declares war on you.

b) the ATTACKER (the unrightfully aggressive claimant; this can be 1. countries with the same dynasty as the target 2. Nations that set defensive claimant or the heirless nation as rival 3. the claimant's RM partners 4. the RM partners of the heirless nation) needs to fight both the country that had RM/ same dynasty with target country and the country itself (who will be in PU under the war leader), plus all the allies of the rightful claimant, IF this attacker accepts the DOW option of the event. Don't forget this attacker can call in their allies in this situation too!

... I know, this is complex. Hope you can follow it a bit.

Note that I have seen AI succession wars involving three AI countries, with defensive and offensive side calling in all their allies. I have seen some succession wars that involved whole Europe before I stepped into this game, if a greater power went to another as minor PU slave. It can happen (like Spain going under France as minor PU slave); but it shouldn't if you play this game... You will *always* be involved yourself. *grin*


3. Examples of succession war as attacker/defender

------>I got this kind war myself, as defender, and as attacker with a popup..


a) Defensive example YOU versus xxxxx: Tooltip said 'Succession war between Savoy(me) and France' in diplomacy window of Castile. Castile was my ally since 1445, we beat up France good during their hundred years war after a DOW in 1448 or so.. King of castile died in 1460 or so (heirless, Spanish heir *died* during event, hunting accident or so, can't recall), we had RM, and we (Savoy, tiny country compared to castile) got personal union with castile. As a senior. Castile was my slave. Yes, it happened, because I was their highest development Rm partner (higher then Portugal and Aragon). I got castile as minor PU pet without having shared dynasty, with a succession war. As explained above, this *can* happen if another nation qualifies to contest your right to install your noble on their throne. Anyways, Castilian king died and wanted to give his throne to Savoy. France contested that of course (they set ME AND Castile as rival) and declared on me same day as their king died because (as the popup for their DOW says) "the Castilian king was old and lost his mind saying Savoy should get their throne if they die heirless" or something like that, as explained above. Funny enough it happened not long after I made peace with France after the second "beat up France-war", so I just beat 'm again with help of *all* my allies, because France declared on me as aggressor contestant for castile throne. I would do same as AI, really, I was opportunistic country baiting greater powers to help beating down the big blue blob France before 1500.

b) offensive example, xxxxxx versus YOU: Tooltip in Naples diplomacy window aid 'Succession war between Austria and Savoy (me)'.Naples broke free of PU with Aragon. Naples took RM with Austria after that, and Austria had rivaled me, and I had rivaled Austria back. Their king died heirless. Austria got Naples as minor PU slave, because me, the most powerful military nation that qualified to contest the succession, got the popup where you got to decide whether or not you want to contest that succession. If you do, you do an aggressive DOW on the country who took the minor PU slave, and you will face them, their allies, and even the whole coalition if your rival is in coalition against you.. So think CAREFULLY before accepting this popup, as said before.

since 1.19, the AI ACTIVELY goes for the wargoal in succession wars if they are the attacker in a succession war. If a minor gets a PU through succession war, and a greater power contests it, they will now FIGHT for all the warscore they need to STEAL the union away.

Ok, now reread it all until it makes sense ;)

OPTION F : you inherit the throne, bypassing a personal union completely. There is huge difference between random inheritance and PU inheritance though!

1. So HOW does it work exactly (this is theory):

I wish to thank @Ternega to submit this theory in the thread. What follows is his theory on how inheritance works, and it is backed by observations and indirect evidence.

I will refer to a potential inheritor (player or random) as country X, to their existing PUs as PUs and to countries with disputed succession as DS.

You will need knowledge in chapter 4 to understand what is written below, as it involves tiers of nations.

Inheritance consists of 3 steps:

A) Random dice roll for all nations, the INHERITANCE ROLL (IR for short) for nation X

IR is not displayed anywhere in the interface and cannot be influenced by reloading game. Its up for debate when this roll occurs, but indirect evidence and observations leads to conclusion that it is likely rolled when any monarch takes throne in any nation, OR in periodic intervals of few decades. What is certain and backed by numerous observers: save scumming with an old ruler will NOT alter the outcome of inheritance, which leads to the above conclusion it has to happen lot sooner. Inheriting independent nations is special case, see below.

My own theory is that the actual chance for PU (or random inheritance) is calculated when the new (current) ruler takes/took the throne, and NOT when the current ruler dies. After that, this chance gets re-rolled on periodic (long intervals; length of timer unknown but likely 10+ years). Save scumming with a 70+ old king and hoping you will inherit won't work, as the chance is already calculated when he took throne or the SAME for a long period. I think they installed this to avoid players save scumming till they inherit.

Proof enough if you ask me ;)

This roll will be checked if ANY heirless nation or PU subject can be directly inherited.

B) Comparing IR to the individual inheritance threshold chance (IT for short)

this is the % chance you can see in tooltips of PU subjects) of each PU stable for 50 years and for any DS nations that you can legally inherit (heirless (vassal) nations being in inheritance tier).

The full probability to inherit -for PU overlord or strongest successor for inheritance tier heirless (vassal) nations- can be calculated as 5 x Diplomatic Reputation for + Stability (Senior) + 5 if both partners share a culture group -1 per province in the junior partner or inheritance tier heirless nation.

I bet you say "wait what" now :rolleyes:


The rule of thumb is you can start to get % chance to inherit a junior PU or random nation that has dip rep times 5 in amount of provinces. You will get chance even sooner if you share culture, and a bit more if you got +3 stab.

important sidenote: Take into account that stacking these modifiers doesn't mean a guaranteed inheritance; the roll the game does on monarch taking throne has to be good enough. The modifers above just widen the range in which the inheritance roll is successful (which is something that is not very Obvious).


example: Austria has 10 diplo rep, 3 stability. Same culture group 3 province nation is heirless and in inheritance tier and their ruler dies , or Austria 3 province PU subject has been subject for 50+ years and new ruler takes throne in Austria.
Austria would get 50% chance from dip rep, 3% from stability, 5% from same culture group and -3% from 3 provinces in PU/DS for a total of 55% as inheritance treshold chance.

the inheritance chance of PU subject is calculated with diplomatic Reputation, which is 5% per point, and number of provinces owned by the junior, which is -1% per province. Austria would get 70% chance to inherit at 14 dip rep, before counting provinces of junior PU or DS.

so for a 14 diplomatic reputation Austria: if any Austrian PU subject has 70+ provinces, forget an inheritance even at 14 dip rep, barring stability and culture group influence.


The inheritance chance of random nations is calculated the same as above, but is ALSO dependant on them being in the right tier (see chapter 4) -which is EXTREMELY RARE- and on another rule: you can only inherit a nation if you have twice their province number, and IF the nation is smaller then 15 provinces.


IF IR<IT you will inherit nation on step C. It should be noted if multiple PUs have same IT they will be all inherited simultaneously or not at all.

C) Inheritance itself, happens when new ruler takes throne for PUs and when their ruler dies for DS. For PUs if check didn't pass they will stay your PU (assuming positive relations). For DS nations will either be inherited, become your PU, cause succession war or gain your dynasty, depending on the tier they are in. Vassals will never become personal unions, but can be inherited (including, in extreme cases, vassals of other nations o_O).

Only Inheritance threshold can be influenced without use of console.


2. EXAMPLE, because examples are easier to understand:

let us take Burgundy as example, led by a player, past 1500.

All three PU subjects of Burgundy can be inherited. Burgundy also has a chance to 1. to inherit the OPM independent heirless nation of Lorraine , and 2. to inherit their heirless vassal Nevers because both of those nations are in the right TIER to be inherited.

------> Step A:

Burgundy king took the throne decades ago, and the inheritance roll occured that day with a 100 sided dice, d100. The game rolled 10.

------> Step B:

1. Burgundy has three PU subjects. The king in Burgundy dies, or abdicates. The game compares the IR inheritance roll in step a versus the IT inheritance threshold chance of Burgundy' PU subjects (the chances can vary depending on current diplo reputation and stability, see formulae above). The IR inheritance roll is BELOW the IT inheritance threshold chance for all three subjects (meaning that IR 10 was lower then the xx%chance to inherit), which leads to inheritance of all three in step C. If the inheritance threshold roll is only lower then the inheritance chance for only ONE of the PU subjects, then Burgundy will only inherit that PU subject. Or two outta three. Or none.

2. Nevers and Lorraine have an invisible high inheritance threshold chance because they only have a few provinces. Since Nevers is a vassal of Burgundy and cause Lorraine is independent, the check for inheritance happens when *their* ruler dies. The new King of Burgundy was in line to inherit Nevers and Lorraine IF their ruler ever dies heirless while those nations are in the inheritance tier, because the inheritance roll of Burgundy was the lowest of all the possible successors with inheritance chance.

So, if a nation gets really Lucky to be strongest successor while random nation is in inheritance tier and their ruler dies heirless.. You can then inherit nations half your province number with a maximum province number of 15..

example: A player once reported seeing Muscovy inherit entire Denmark, without them sharing dynasty (with just RM done). Muscovy must have had REALLY low inheritance roll to go under the very small inherit threshold chance to inherit Denmark. The default outcome would have been that Muscovy delivers noble to take throne in Denmark.

Are you still with me ;)

Note AGAIN that the inheritance threshold chance to inherit independent nations will be a LOT higher if you stack a load of diplomatic reputation. A 14 dip reputation Austria can inherit eglible random nations easily depending if their ruler dies heirless in in the right tier, or if their PU subjects have lower province number then Austria diplo reputation x 5.



------> Step C:

Burgundy gets cores on ALL the provinces of the nations that get inherited, and all nations inherited by Burgundy vanish from the map, becoming territory of Burgundy. Having negative opinion with legible inheritance subjects WILL prevent the inheritance, and might lead to the normal 'break union'. What happens to vassals/colonial nations of inherited nations needs to be tested still.

3. Important tips:

*if you see in diplomatic window of PU subjects that you will inherit one or even 5 at once, then ABDICATE. You will inherit them all immediatly, if it showed you would.


*for best chances of inheritance you should maximize your diplomatic reputation (and stability for that little extra nudge) when your ruler gets old (40 age or 50 age should be good threshold to do it, depending whether your ruler is general or not), additionally you can use enforce culture (if available) to gain an extra 5% chance.

Can you see now WHY Austria inherits a lot? They got high natural diplomatic reputation as emperor, their stability is usually high, and their culture group consists MANY nations.

*Keep these parameters as high as possible until they are no longer in DS. When trying to inherit nations in DS it is advisable to focus on nations within your own culture group, and to weight benefits of inheritance with risk of gaining them as PU instead.

OPTION G : A dynasty in a nation has died out; this can happen if an heir in regency dies by event. The nation will go in interregnum.

My theory: If you do RM with a nation in interregnum, and if you are highest diplo reputation partner of all RM partners, then you deliver the noble that becomes new king after a few years.

Anyways, You get a free dynasty spread if you deliver noble to become king in a nation with interregnum. Once the nation gets a king of your dynasty, you are in option C with that nation.
Prepare for force PU war: when your noble takes throne, claim the throne, and do force PU war..


Chapter 6: Important side notes for game of thrones

disclaimer: this list is LONG, but all the points in it are relatively important!

1. It is possible to share a dynasty without ever having married a country yourself. Nation A marries nation B, B marries C, A and C can end up sharing a dynasty. And so on. If you were lucky/unlucky to get a Habsburg ruler, you can bypass step A completely!!! Think of the possibilities. With high enough prestige you can claim throne of austria in this situation, if their prestige is lower, and the emperor has no heir... Dynasty is dynasty, there is no "leader" country of a dynasty. A country who got habsburg king due to event of a king dying heirless and getting Habsburg on throne.... can claim throne of the original habsburg country later on.

2. I would never claim a throne unless the ruler is heirless and 40 or 50+ years of age, unless you plan to do a force union war. I'd do 40+ if they got 0 other RM or 1-2 RM partners. I'd do 50+ if target nation is a lucky nation, or has many RM.
Why? If you claim at 30+, target country of my claims somehow miraculously get the event that gives godlike heirs ("born under a star" or something like that, it can give you heir like 6/5/6.. And you can name him Johan!) Man, my herald once brought news of a Johan heir in a Muslim country that turned orthodox due to rebels. I couldn't stop laughing ) I suppose the heirless king goes in overdrive if they hear some country claims their throne. Heck, I'd make sure I'd get an heir no matter what. Maybe there is even higher chance for heir events if your country received claim throne from another. God knows what formulae the AI uses. Anyways, consider carefully when to claim a throne.

3. If you fight a force union war, and the heirless country with your dynasty member also has minor PU countries... You will *also* get these nations as minor PU slave IF you force their overlord in a PU. As screenshot in the teaser chapter shows, I got Poland, Muscovy and a huge palatinate in one war, just because I force Pu'd the overlord.. For 980 prestige.

4. If you get a colonizer as minor PU slave, all the colonial nations they form stay under that PU slave. *If* you integrate them however, they do NOT break free, they become *your* colonial nations, even if you never took expansion/exploration idea groups. Note that colonial nations of minor PU subjects do NOT count towards WC achievement. This means you HAVE to integrate all minor PU nations with colonial nations to get WC achievement. Once you integrate colonizer minor PU subjects, all their CN become YOUR CN. Take this into account when doing a WC run! Integrate PU subjects with colonial nations FIRST!!

5. If you make a greater power like France a minor PU slave (as England can do in HYW) be sure to have some other greater powers as allies, or they will declare independence fast. England or France are good examples, since they feel confident that their navy and/or their army will stop you from obtaining white peace conditions. IF you somehow manage to get white peace able war score, you can end war: the country who declared independence will become your lesser PU partner again, and the 50 year integrate timer *will* be reset.

6. Always keep an eye on successions window. Do it a lot, 4-6 times a year. Sometimes a 70 year old king dies that has heir. Sometimes the 70 year old king gets succeeded by a 64 year old that has no heirs. Check succession outcome for *every* country that gets new king.. If they get another old king with no heir, a quick RM might secure a quick personal union chance by installing a dynasty member on their throne after the old 64 heir dies also. ... only to DOW them for force union the day after your noble took throne PREY for more chances in game of thrones.

7. Whether or not a country will accept a royal marriage with you is determined by the distance towards your nearest (cored?) province, their opinion of you (but bonus isn't same as opinion bonus/malus in diplomacy!), your diplomatic reputation, if you are of same religion or not, if you are neighbors, if your army and navy are bigger/smaller then yours, and their trust of you (positive or negative).It is possible to get a RM with a country that has -200 opinion of you and threatened status (hostile and outraged status give malus making RM impossible!) due them wanting the provinces you conquered from them earlier. It doesn't take this into account. With high enough diplo rep, a diplo rep advisor and some luck you might just pull a RM off with a non-outraged/hostile -200 opinion neighbor of same religion. If you grow very big, you can even RM-200 opinion heretic countries that are reasonably far away from your nearest province.

---> Example of something weird I pulled off: I played Savoy. Conquered Genoa for their black sea base (Azov or Kaffa province). Due to having province very near Muscovy, I could RM Muscovy as Savoy with the help of a diplo rep advisor (just about, with like +26 bonus and -25 malus for acceptance) Their king was 60+ and heirless. Needless to say I was. excited. Possible Muscovy PU slave before 1500! But it didn't work out, my king died before he did (ending the RM with them), and Poland got the dynasty spread. Eventually Poland took Muscovy as minor PU slave (I see Muscovy king die heirless lot now..) and +-50 years later I got chance to force PU Poland, obtaining Muscovy after all! See screenshot above.

8. (thx @Thund91 for bringing this up, forgot about it) "A country who is war leader, will NEVER end up as a junior partner in a personal union. I, as Bohemia, claimed the throne of Hesse, who had an old ruler (53) and no heir. I had Hohenzollern or w/e Dynasty. It changed from a noble from my dynasty to a succession war between me and Brandenburg after I claimed the throne. This was good, HOWEVER, as soon as Hesse got involved in a war, it again switched to "a noble from Hohenzollern succeeds," and this has been true in all the cases where I've claimed the throne or when there was peace and the partner got involved in a war and then it switched again."

Also, a nation who has PU subjects of their own, will never EVER become PU slave to another nation, except if you force PU war them and win.

--->This why warning a country NOT to go to war vs. neighbors helps for stopping this option. The target country might still become war leader in a defensive war of an ally of theirs that gets attacked, so warn *everyone* that has CB on the target country and their allies, and anyone that can drag the heirless country in a war (so, the allies of the heirless country need warning as well, as well as THEIR enemies... I'm not joking. Just warn everyone in Europe if you hate unraveling alliance webs! A warning will usually stop other countries from going to war, if they feel threatened enough by you.

---> this is also the way to go if YOU are threatened to fall in PU under someone. Just stay at war forever, until you get a new noble on your throne from your country or RM partners. If you are at war, you can never *ever* fall in a PU under someone, unless they do force union war.

9. A minor PU slave will END their status and elect their own king in a few situations.

-----> your king could die when your "force PU" minor PU slave still has negative opinion of you, due to the opinion penalty you got by claiming their throne. They will end the union and elect their own king. You will get restore union CB. .

-----> the minor PU slave can declare independence if they feel confident. This depends if on your military rating. If you got low manpower, a small army on low maintenance etc (in general, if you are beat up) they will declare independence real fast.

---> rebels can force their demands, breaking the PU. Kill any rebel types that can force a country into a republic. Also kill all pretender rebels.

10. this point 10 is obsolete, seems they removed almost the entire AE penalty for force PU'ing a country into subject status. So focus on forcing PU when you can! It gives little AE now. Point is, forcing a nation in a PU will net you load less AE then flat out conquering a nation. This is one of the reasons why playing game of thrones can be worthwhile.

11.
---->If *you* take initiative for a RM with a country, it will end when your king dies. So never take initiative if your king is old, and you intend to DOW on that country or do whatever that might damage their re-acceptance of a RM after you get new king.
---->IF *other country* sends RM proposal, it will only end when THEIR king dies. Meaning, accept proposals of young kings, and send proposals when your king is young. It makes renewing the RM lot easier after one of the kings die, especially if you develop bad relations with the country after the rm relation is set up.

12.If succession says "a pretender will rise" (or whatever it says) it means they got a weak claim heir (low legitimacy) and low prestige. Then a pretender will spawn with a stack of rebels inside the country, after the weak claim heir seizes the throne. *if* that rebel stack manages to occupy and hold enough provinces, he will seize the throne. A country of 1-2 provinces can never fight against these pretenders, and you will get heralds saying that "a pretender seized throne of country X". Note that the risk of a pretender goes away if you or a country UPS its legitimacy and their prestige. What has this to do with your game? There is no popup and pause option herald to warn you that pretender rebels (or any rebel type!) spawned in your minor PU slave country, you got to notice this yourself. This can be devastating in the first years of obtaining a minor PU slave after a force union war.. If you don't see those rebels inside the fresh obtained minor PU slave, they can break your PU over that country!!! In theory tax rebels can turn your minor PU slave into a noble republic and pretender rebels just seize your throne in their own country

Note that they so called "fixed" this in recent patches, but I still saw rebels popping up in subjects without I got notified.

A good solution is to enable popup/pause for events happening in interesting nations. Set your (PU) subjects as interesting nation, and you can se when they get a disaster or an event that gives (pretender) rebels within their borders.


---> TIP: Park an unneeded army inside territory of the fresh minor PU subject AND attach them to that country its army (as long as you don't go to war). Then you got a semi-reliable way of eliminating rebels in minor PU subjects. This tip also works for rebels in colonial nations, after you fully annex a country that is bigger then your colonial nation itself...

-----> example: you got a new fresh obtained England as minor PU slave. You go to war right after in Africa, and you forget to check England territory. A few years after you get a herald saying a pretender rose to throne in England, and you get casus belli to restore union. Needless to say I was like 'wait....what...how?" first time that happened. So, until you get good relations with seized minor PU country and until your base revolt risk for that seized country is 0,0%, keep an eye on your seized country. If a PU subject gets pretender rebels or any rebels at all, *KILL THEM*. It will earn you trust, and it prevents this from happening.


13. Another important tip I almost forgot that is *very* important in the European game of thrones. The pope. Yes, the pope....
If you are curia controller (it got a lot harder to become this in 1.8 and later), the pope can allow you to break royal marriages at will. As many as you want, whenever. Bride pregnant or whatnot, so to speak. If a king without heir "produces" an heir, royal marriages with a country that you only married to seize throne, become useless in the game of thrones. Who cares about the +25 relation bonus... If you did RM to a -200 relation non outraged neighbor that wants all your conquered provinces. .... Then you can easily take another -75 (or was it -100) penalty for breaking a royal marriage. They won't get outraged! funny...If you are curia controller, just break royal ties. No stability hit now, and just marry someone else, simple as that. Your nobles don't dare to argue with the pope. This is especially handy once a noble of your throne took throne in a country you got RM with. Just break royal marriage now, and hope for a succession war decades later. If you watched the Tudors series on TV: Henry VIII in England wanted pope to break royal marriage.. Pope refused, Henry VIII became head of church, protestant, declared restraint of appeals and church taxes. That *is* actually in game in EU4, as a possible nation decision... They got their facts straight at paradox.
If you are not curia controller, your nobles will be in an uproar, and it will cost you a -1 stability hit for each marriage broken.

NOTE that getting the full diplomatic idea group removes the -1 stab for breaking royal marriage as well.

...I think I literally broke marriages with a country 100 times in a century total. I think I beat Henry VIII there. All because I got the pope as a friend. All that, because I didn't turn reformed/protestant. The pope is your friend for this game of thrones. Which brings me to point 14.


14. there is one big downside to taking very big countries as minor PU slave. You need to be bigger in province number before you can integrate them. A small country that gets big country as minor PU slave (as I did, Savoy got Spain early on) cannot integrate it until you blob and become bigger then your minor PU slave, and that greater power will take on a diplo slot for decades. But since minor PU subject and alliance partner both take a diplo slot, I prefer a minor PU slave greater power over an alliance with a greater power any day. A minor PU slave will *always* join your wars, just like vassals.


Example: Denmark cannot integrate their minor PU slaves, since they are small at start.

This isn't a bad thing, as a greater power minor PU slave is usually better then spending thousands and thousands of diplo points integrating them.

15. If your country is the target of a succession war (since your king has no heir and you got dynasty partners and enemies who qualify for succession war) you got 2 options.
--->1. break royal marriage. Should work, right? It usually does.
--->2. EVEN BETTER: start a war until you get new king from one of your RM partners. If you are at war, you can never become the target of a succession war (as stated above). Chain wars work wonders in situation like this. If you are at war, you can't become junior PU partner. So chain those wars, and end the first one you started when call for peace kicks in, after you started second. And so on.
Some clarification: You can be at war for decades without "call for peace" being active for more then a month. You only need to end first war you started to get rid of the modifier. Repeat when it pops up again.

Note that this ALSO means its BAD idea to call a monarchy to war that has old ruler and no heir, if you are in line to get them as PU subject peacefully. If you do, a noble will just replace the old heirless king, and your shot at free PU is gone until you finish the war.

16.If you inherit the throne of an elector (usually by them being your dynasty and you are a LOT bigger) you also inherit the elector status in the HRE. You can get the "electable" achievement this way.

17. Just abiding your time after allying many greater power nations is a good start for game of thrones. I do the risky strategy of feeding allies in multiple wars, and then hoping for a PU chance before 1700. What people overlook generally is that feeding allies gives them AE, and it might lead to them being UNABLE to get any RM except yours, because all countries will be outraged towards them, thanks to your feeding. Gamey tactic? I think its valid and WAD.. I just abuse it. This leads to less heir chance for them. It worked out great here. Then you hope for heir dead events. If such events happen after your dynasty spread to allies, its immediate force PU chance. I once got free PU over Austria, after I helped them expand for decades, in the Ryukyu AAR.

18. You can feed allies provinces in a war. This will anger their royal marriage partners; especially if they joined YOUR war versus someone that they like. The ally (who joined your war) will lose its alliances this way, their RM partners will be outraged, and in the end it can lead to your ally having only YOU as feasible RM partner. This leads to LESS heir chance for them, since they only got one RM. This is an advanced tactic to increase your chances in game of thrones. If they got less heir chance, you get more chance at a PU chance with them. This is especially useful to isolate Austria in the HRE, and to get Austria as minor PU subject.. Note that only exact same religion nations will get load of AE with whoever you fed.

19. If you have a chance at installing a noble of your dynasty on a foreign throne (a REAL chance, like a 50+ year old heirless ruler, not some 18 year old heirless king cause he isn't going to die soon), then make sure you don't get involved in a war that includes them. If you are at war with the nation you might install noble on, then the dynasty they pick to get new king from changes from 1st highest base tax partner to the second. Rule of thumb: you can't get dynasty spreads in other nations directly, even with a RM, if you are at war with that nation. If the war ends, it will flip-flop back to your dynasty delivering noble.

20.If your greater power PU subject is hostile, this is due to them being a greater power. Greater powers who become (PU)subject will always be hostile to their overlord, unless overlord manages to get +200 relation with them. This being 'hostile' doesn't mean they will declare independence soon. That depends on their military rating versus yours and their liberty desire. You can lower chance for independence wars by being at war constantly and let your PU armies do the fight. Use 1k army of yourself, set subjects to "supportive, and click attach on that 1k troops on. The PU armies will attach, and you can then move the PU army one province a time to where you want them. If you don't, they might flee a province where they get attrition in. Keep your PU subject manpower pool low and their standing army low, be at war constantly and you will have low chance for independence wars.

21. PU subjects can ally with each other and declare joint independence war versus their overlord.

Its the same mechanic as with vassals, with ONE exception: PU subjects look at their OWN strength versus overlord when evaluating if they can win versus their overlord. Vassals take their combined strength into account.
If you see PU subjects allying, its because their liberty desire is all high. Pu subjects will never ally with vassal subjects.
So if Naples and Aragon are PU subjects of Castile, and one of the two declares on overlord, then the other will join the war. Both will get a new king.
You can avoid such wars usually by being at war constantly, as it gives subjects -50 incentive to declare independence if you are at war.

22 .IF a minor PU subject declares independence war: if you get white peace or better (aka you don't have to offer anything) the country declaring independence will just become a minor PU subject again after they accept the peace deal, and 50 year integration timer is reset.

You can avoid wars like this if you use stacks of minor PU subject to win your wars. If their manpower and current standing army is low, and they are at war constantly, they will almost never declare independence. Even France won't.

23. Another important note: You can get Union over another same culture/dynasty nation now BY EVENT.


Both rulers must be between 16 and 40, the two nations involved must be neighbors, both nations must have no heirs, both rulers have to be of different sex and be either of the same dynasty or in the same culture group. Both nations need to have high enough opinion with each other. The MTTH of the start is 500 months. Portugal can get a UNION over Spain this way, Or Styria can get a Union over Austria.

24. Paradox nerfed force PU war and calling in other nations to help out They added a special malus so no one will join, because I suppose it makes no sense that allies of yours help to give you another (big) subject.
Well no one... I'd have to look it up, but I think its highly unlikely for someone to join. Maybe if they are rivals they might still do it.
But I wouldn't count on it.
Best way to get PU subjects is now setting France, England or whoever is mean and big army as RIVAL, and hope they rival you back. And then hope they give you succession wars. Or just claiming throne of same dynasty heirless nation, and hoping their king dies heirless. That will give the PU for free too in most cases.

25. While fighting the 'Claim throne' war (same dynasty but no heir for example -> Claim throne and start war) it doesn't matter if the target Nation gets a new heir. You can still force the PU when the war score is high enough.

26. you can make (PU) subjects independent again by occupying any small nation 100% and then do 'offer' peace deal on them that cancels 'vassalage' of any unwanted subject. This can be handy if a small PU subject holds land you need to form PLC or Italy for example

27. USE the subject interaction buttons for all your PU subjects! You can ask them to change culture to yours, to switch to your religion, and other subject interactions will lower their liberty desire.

28. Players and Lucky Nations cannot be inherited. Instead, if there are no valid Contestants, then PU (otherwise SW) will happen.

29. Junior leading a PU herself cannot be PUd or get a succession war over her throne. A noble will rise either from the same dynasty (if there is one) or from RM partners; whichever is strongest. I.e. Aragon cannot be PUd while she has Naples under her. These countries, however, can be inherited! (The PUs of the Junior will be let go free, while vassals become the Successor's vassals).

30. An inheritance cannot be contested.

31. For PU or Succession war: the size of the Successor and/or the Contestant does not matter! (I wrote it here because it's a common misconception).

32. If there are no other Contestants otherwise, an in-dynasty PU always will be contested by dynasty members. I.e. Tver will contest Ryazan for Muscovy PU; Navarra will contest Aragon for Castile PU (though they couldn't even stop a dynasty spread from other, slightly bigger Houses)

33. War Rules to know for PU game:

--> If Junior is at war, no PU/Inheritance/SW will happen. A noble will rise either from the same dynasty (if there is one) or from RM partners; whichever is strongest.
--> If Successor is at war with anyone but the Contestant -> instead of inheritance a PU/SW will happen. Already PUs are unaffected by these wars.
-->If Successor is at war with the Contestant -> instead of a SW a PU will happen (the UI will display succession war...it's a bug)


34. Prestige does not seem to matter when the game chooses who will fight succession war. You can be the Successor or Contestant even with -100 prestige.

35. deleted due to problem being bug fixed in 1.18.

36. what to do if you get a large nation as PU subject:
be at war constantly, and never be at peace for a day. Unions get -50 malus to declare independence if overlord (and them) are in a war.

farm prestige, as PU subjects get 1% ld for each point overlord is in negative prestige. -100 prestige is 100 LD in PU subject, so farm that prestige!

If you own Cossacks dlc, you can conquer provinces near them, and then you can grant the conquered provinces with the subject window option. If the conquered provinces border them by land or sea zone, you can grant those provinces to them.
It will lower their liberty desire, and THEY got to attack the rebels that follow. Its a great way to weaken subjects.

And constant warfare (leading their armies around with 1k stack with attach on) will lower their army strength, which will all in all result in docile PU subjects.
If one of them goes above 50+% ld, then enable loyalist faction. You have to preventPU subject from allying other subjects or asking support independence from any greater powers, which they will do if one goes above 50%.

If someone supports their independence, then rival them and crush them with humiliate rival cb. Your subject will LOSE support from said nation, and might go loyal again.

lose the war if you have to, getting LD of big PU subjects below 50% is more important.

That's the best thing to do.. Keeping free rival slot for nations that support subject independence guarantees a CB to stomp those supporters the minute they support your PU subject independence.

37. pretender rebel stacks spawn in subject PU nations if YOUR (overlord) legitimacy is low, or if average/weak claim heir takes throne in overlord nation.

38. Unlike Vassals and Protectorates; subjects under a PU do not suffer from the 'Subject Nation' 50% malus to development.

This actually has a pretty large impact on PU'ing smaller countries:

- Since the small country is not expanding in it's own right; it should have more monarch points to spend on development and technology.
- Multiple countries in an area generates more overall monarch points than one overlord.
- This results in much faster development if you keep your PU's around, leading to a stronger country when they are finally integrated; through inheritance or manually.

39. Inheritance is a possibility; particularly with smaller PU's. This saves you on the diplomatic power for manual integration, and lets them stay around until you roll the integrate; during which time they develop. Economic Ideas is a very common choice for the AI; especially early.

This is particularly noteworthy if your own ruler has higher stats; since PU juniors directly take the stats of your ruler.

Small PUs without feeding could be a good way to go if you're playing a diplomatic reputation stacking game though, as then the chance of inheriting becomes significant and the relative effect of development is larger.

In the HRE, there's also the carrot of inheriting elector status from a PU (Palatinate is the best PU junior for this). Definitely something to consider if you're playing Habsburg-style

40. When in a Succession War, the attacker can now demand Cancel Subject on the Country in question as part of the war goal.

41. All subjects now get reduced AE from your actions, not just vassals & marches. As of 1.18, Pu subjects won't take hideous AE from your conquests.

42. Royal Marriages now have a 50% chance of getting a queen, and a newborn heir is a 100% chance of getting a local noble as a queen. If you have a Queen consort from a country you become kin. You also get events from your family offering or asking favors to/from you. Furthermore, if: if a consort of YOUR dynasty rules a nation with any weak claim heir, you can claim their throne and force PU!

43. 1.18 Added AI for Abandon Personal Union. AI might get rid of PU they don't want.

44. PU Bug fixes 1.18:

--> Gaining PU on a nation that is defending in an independence war against a former lesser partner will drag the new overlord into the war instead of ending it, as of 1.18.
--> Can no longer declare restoration of union war on subjects.
--> The HRE emperor will no longer get automatically called into succession wars inside HRE.
--> No longer possible to contest a country for succession if the countries are already at war.
--> Interregnum death will no longer trigger succession wars.

45. Disinheriting an heir can be quite useful in the game of thrones. Marry a nation of the dynasty you want to obtain, and then disinherit your heir when your ruler gets old. Go to war then until your ruler dies, and a noble from the desired dynasty will ruler your nation, provided that nation is your biggest development RM partner. Note that you need to go to war until this happens, to avoid succession war over your nation! If you don't, you suddenly might end up as PU subject of France.. farm prestige first, as PU subjects get 1% ld for each point overlord is in negative prestige. -100 prestige is 100 LD in PU subject, so farm that prestige!


46.
But my question is this: What happens to the PU on Castille when I switch to a Republic?
IT STAYS pu.

You could go revolutionary Japanese culture Hindu religion HRE emperor and still keep it, so to speak.

47.
You're going to lose your PU if you switch revolutionary IF you still have a RM with your PU.
this is a bug to consider if you want to flip to revolutionary republic while having PU subjects.

48. If a PU subject diplomatic window says 'xxx will be inherited upon monarch death', then abdicating the throne will ensure you inherit the nation. It might be worth to do this, as the inheritance chance might go AWAY if the inheritance roll gets redone after a while.

49. if a consort regency is active in your highest development rm partner, the dynasty of the CONSORT is rigged to spread into YOUR nation or others if your ruler or another rm partner dies heirless. This is really silly, but its the rule.

50. you can cancel any subject for 100% in 'cancel subject' tab on peace deal window, even if said subject is 400+ warscore. trouble is, getting that 100% in a war :(
Cheaper might be supporting rebels of a type that can break a union. Last I checked, these were: Pretenders (in the Junior partner only), Religious, Government type (to a type invalid for a PU). If you declare in support, I *think* you only need to get to about 50% war score.
Unfortunately, this relies on one of those types of rebels being ready to go...

51. farm prestige, as PU subjects get 1% ld for each point overlord is in negative prestige. -100 prestige is 100 LD in PU subject, so farm that prestige!

52. if you vassalise a nation with PU subjects (like Provence at 1444 start), you can STEAL their PU subjects as ANY government type.

the Papal state can get Lorraine as PU subject if you vassalise the overlord.

don't ask, it's likely a bug or an oversight.

53. if you become tributary as a Christian, you will lose disputed succession alert window. You cannot spread your dynasty anymore either. I did not test if you can still get succession wars as a tributary. Likely not.
 
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atwix

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Good write-up Atwix, but I have a few comments I think you should add. I tested this myself before, especially in my recent Bohemia game.

1. A country who is war leader, will NEVER end up as a junior partner in a personal union. I, as Bohemia, claimed the throne of Hesse, who had an old ruler (53) and no heir. I had Hohenzollern or w/e Dynasty. It changed from a noble from my dynasty to a succession war between me and Brandenburg after I claimed the throne. This was good, HOWEVER, as soon as Hesse got involved in a war, it again switched to "a noble from Hohenzollern succeeds," and this has been true in all the cases where I've claimed the throne or when there was peace and the partner got involved in a war and then it switched again. This also brings me to my next point...

2. In my game, the 53 year old Hesse ruler managed to produce an heir after a couple of years. Idk if you just have godly luck, but 40+ is still very early to spam claim throne, especially with countries who have multiple royal marriages or are lucky nations. I'd recommend upping the age requirement to claiming the throne in your guide.

3. I also don't know if you mentioned this in your guide, but the "marriage policies pay off" event target will NOT have your same dynasty until that heir succeeds. Idk if you mentioned this or not. If so, then nevermind.

I think that's all for now. Good write-up either way.
added your comments in the thread, thx
 

atwix

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How do you control whether a country is "interesting" or not for the message settings?
i rewrote that part of the guide, as it was not clear. Hope its bit clearer now what to do.
 

atwix

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I'm reading through it but its hard to follow.
Ideally a utube video would be best to show what your talking about.


added a disclaimer that the thread is very complex if you read it first time. I recommend rereading this when you get opportunity in a disputed succesion situation. If you can see ingame what i talk about, its lot easier to understand.
 

rrw77

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Thanks atwix, this is really useful. I don't make enough use of this part of the game and part of that is cause I've never really engaged with it due to it being messy and confusing.

So using your detailed info above if I was to make a quick idiots guide to keep to hand while playing it would be as follows:

A. No dynasty, no heir - Claim throne (if King over 40) - AIM is to put your dynasty on throne to open up future possibilities.
B. No dynasty, weak heir / regency - Do nothing
C. Same dynasty, no heir - If you can win a war, Claim throne and use Casus belli to force PU. If you can't win a war, check you are the highest prestige same Dynasty RM, if so claim throne and hope they don't get an heir before dying for PU, if neither, work on improving your prestige!
D. Same dynasty, weak heir / regency - If you can win a war, claim throne, use Casus belli to force PU.
E. succession war as defender/attacker - If defender, you're going to war. If attacker, only attack if you can win war against PU'd country, defender and it's allies, otherwise don't press.
F. You inherit the throne - hooray

Is that about right?
 

atwix

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Thanks atwix, this is really useful. I don't make enough use of this part of the game and part of that is cause I've never really engaged with it due to it being messy and confusing.

So using your detailed info above if I was to make a quick idiots guide to keep to hand while playing it would be as follows:

A. No dynasty, no heir - Claim throne (if King over 40 or 50) - AIM is to put your dynasty on throne to open up future possibilities.
B. No dynasty, weak heir / regency - Do nothing
C. Same dynasty, no heir - If you can win a war, Claim throne and use Casus belli to force PU. If you can't win a war, check you are the highest prestige same Dynasty RM, if so claim throne and hope they don't get an heir before dying for PU, if neither, work on improving your prestige!
D. Same dynasty, weak heir / regency - If you can win a war, claim throne, use Casus belli to force PU.
E. succession war as defender/attacker - If defender, you're going to war. If attacker, only attack if you can win war against PU'd country, defender and it's allies, otherwise don't press.
F. You inherit the throne - hooray

Is that about right?
about right. I'll add your idiots guide to original post.. hehe.
 

TimFisher

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Wow, I've never clicked that button and I've been playing this game over 200 hours. Amazing. My "interesting" list had 4 countries on it. Now it has almost 30. Awesome.

Next question: What significance is the "A Pretender Rises" event? Does that mean nobody claimed the throne so the game just picks a noble?
 

crusaderking

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Wow. This is a good guide. Must be stickied or put up on the wiki. IIRC, the whole claim the throne/PU stuff was changed in one of the patches. After that, I just gave up on it. Nice work atwix! :)
 

atwix

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Wow. This is a good guide. Must be stickied or put up on the wiki. IIRC, the whole claim the throne/PU stuff was changed in one of the patches. After that, I just gave up on it. Nice work atwix! :)
good call, i forgot about pretender rebels. If succesion says "a pretender will rise" (or whatever it says) it means they got a weak claim heir and low prestige. Then a pretender will spawn with a stack of rebels inside the country. *if* that rebel stack manages to occupy and hold enough provinces, he will seize the throne. This can be devastating in the first years of obtaining a minor PU slave after a force union war.. If you don't see those rebels inside the fresh obtained minor PU slave, they can break your PU over that country. I'll add it in the guide, point 12 of the tips is dedicated to you.
 
Last edited:

atwix

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i never posted stuff on a wiki, can i manually post a guide on the eu4 wiki?