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How To Run a Minor Nation Into The Ground: A Series In Three Parts​
Part One: The Epic Tale of Moldavia

Hello everyone. This is about my fifth or so EU3 game, and so far I've managed to lead Munster to ruin, Castille to religious rebellion, Modena to death within a year of my assuming control, and Brandenburg from mediumi/minor faction to major player in German politics, and back to ruin at the hands of her neighbors. If I were an ingame advisor, I'd probably come with negative modifiers for every tech upgrade and lower military morale, with at best a minor bonus directed at lowering inflation. I imagine kings would attempt to trick their rivals into hiring me, knowing that would cause their ruin faster than any war.

Although I have a moderately successful Castillian game going on now, I still have an urge to give a smaller nation a try. Better yet, I decided to write an AAR in the hopes of at least amusing others with my inevitable downfall. I had first planned on doing one on Modena, but several failed starts later I set my eye on ruining the relatively inoffensive eastern european single province minor Moldavia.

This AAR will fcus more on gameplay than narrative. I'm hoping that by writing everything out like this I'll learn more about my mistakes, and hopefully amuse some of the far better players on these forums.

Here it goes:

The Epic Tale of Moldavia​


The year is 1453 nd I've taken control of Moldavia, a poor single faction province surrounded entirely by A. much more powerful factions and B. Factions that are vassals of those powerful factions. The starting king is Petra II Aron, with a mediocre score of Admin 6,Diplomacy 5,and Military 5.

Taking a look at the available advisors and finding none of interest, I Set my tech slides to mostly govt. and second Production, mint as little as possible, and send all my diplomats off to fail to arrange alliances with neighboring Poland and Hungary. I also turn the king into a surprisingly good general, just on the off chance I see an opportunity to expand.

I set myself for a long time waiting to be conquered by a greedy neighbor when that opportunity knocks. Poland/Lithuania have gone to war with Crimea cutting off Crimea's province Cherson from the rest of their territory. Within month, the mighty nation of Moldvia sends a declaration of war to the Crimea and marches to Cherson.




After a few scary battles in which the army of Moldavia fights off a force three times it's size(kindly lowered in morale from skirmishes with Lithuanian forces), Crimea accepts a ceasefire and cedes Cherson.

An alliance is arranged with Cyprus, and royal marriages with Poland, Bosnia, Montenegro, and Tver.

Moldavia is now a two province nation, but the quest for glory has just begun.


I'm not quite sure where to go from here. My BB rating is still low. I'm thinking of trying to grab a one nation island faction, like Naxos. I'll also have to think about NI to get.
 
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You might want to get into an alliance with one of your powerful neighbors. ;)

Joe
 

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Still trying, but it's been hard getting only about half to diplomats I'm used to(only 2.61 per year or so). Every alliance attempt was maybe at the beginning of the game, and impossible now.

I am proud of getting that royal marriage with Poland, though(took 3 tries). Hoping for one with Hungary, and have granted the OE military access(I remember the stab hit being pretty bad for attacking someone that had granted me military access, so hopefully it'll keep them at bay).
 

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Things appeared to be going well for Moldavia. Peace reigned throughout the land, and King Petru commissioned a National Bank, ending inflation while still allowing the state to mint enough money to stay afloat without using up the yearly census tax funds. When King Petru died, he was succeeded by King Iancu, known throughout the land to be intelligent, fierce, and to possess a tongue of silver (Admin 7, Mil 8, Dip 6). King Iancu promised to make Moldavia a mighty nation, and set about working to gain their ally Bosnia as a vassal.

However,the Time of Troubles would begin during his reign. Some said that it was a curse of God, that the brilliant young new king had angered Him through arrogance. After a few drinks others whispered that he brought God's wrath by engaging in mysterious rituals in his castle. Whatever the cause, it brought about Moldavia's destruction.

On the eve of a great achievement of Iancu's, an alliance with Hungary, a peasant revolt, 5,000 strong, sprang up in a neighboring province controlled by Poland. After storming the Polish castle, they set their eyes on Chersov, destroying the king's army and taking the province. Mercenaries were hired to take the province back, but they failed, fleeing after an opening exchange of fire. Worse yet, paying the mercenaries robbed the nation of it's treasury and a loan had to be taken. Even minting all of their gold, the interest payments were higher than the national income. THe whole army was disbanded to save money.

Stability lowered in Moldavia as further peasant revolts continued (the peasant revolt events, anyway). Then Moldavia's alliance with Bosnia brought them into wars with faraway powers the Moldavians had never even hard them. One nation, Candar, fighting under a banner with a Jewish star but claiming to be Muslims, marched a army all the way to Chersov, taking the province from the rebels.

In the end the nation was destroyed, electing to become a vassal of Hungary rather than be subjected to Muslim rule. The days of the free nation of Moldavia were over.

:( That was sad. Eveything went fairly well until that giant rebellion occurred n a neighboring province.

Ah, well. Time to find a new minor nation to drive into the ground. Does anyone have any preferences? My wife votes for Switzerland(they have a Rheinlander culture, wonder if they can unite Germany). I was thinking an Italian or German minor.
 

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Zimfan said:
Things appeared to be going well for Moldavia. Peace reigned throughout the land, and King Petru commissioned a National Bank, ending inflation while still allowing the state to mint enough money to stay afloat without using up the yearly census tax funds. When King Petru died, he was succeeded by King Iancu, known throughout the land to be intelligent, fierce, and to possess a tongue of silver (Admin 7, Mil 8, Dip 6). King Iancu promised to make Moldavia a mighty nation, and set about working to gain their ally Bosnia as a vassal.

However,the Time of Troubles would begin during his reign. Some said that it was a curse of God, that the brilliant young new king had angered Him through arrogance. After a few drinks others whispered that he brought God's wrath by engaging in mysterious rituals in his castle. Whatever the cause, it brought about Moldavia's destruction.

On the eve of a great achievement of Iancu's, an alliance with Hungary, a peasant revolt, 5,000 strong, sprang up in a neighboring province controlled by Poland. After storming the Polish castle, they set their eyes on Chersov, destroying the king's army and taking the province. Mercenaries were hired to take the province back, but they failed, fleeing after an opening exchange of fire. Worse yet, paying the mercenaries robbed the nation of it's treasury and a loan had to be taken. Even minting all of their gold, the interest payments were higher than the national income. THe whole army was disbanded to save money.

Stability lowered in Moldavia as further peasant revolts continued (the peasant revolt events, anyway). Then Moldavia's alliance with Bosnia brought them into wars with faraway powers the Moldavians had never even hard them. One nation, Candar, fighting under a banner with a Jewish star but claiming to be Muslims, marched a army all the way to Chersov, taking the province from the rebels.

In the end the nation was destroyed, electing to become a vassal of Hungary rather than be subjected to Muslim rule. The days of the free nation of Moldavia were over.

:( That was sad. Eveything went fairly well until that giant rebellion occurred n a neighboring province.

Ah, well. Time to find a new minor nation to drive into the ground. Does anyone have any preferences? My wife votes for Switzerland(they have a Rheinlander culture, wonder if they can unite Germany). I was thinking an Italian or German minor.
i say......onto urbino!
 

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Steal the Italian universities!
 

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Well, another game ended, and short enough I think I'll just tack it on to this aar as a sort of miniseries of Zimfan's failures.

Started off well, making allies and grabbing the newly formed nation of Corsica(rebelled from Genoa a few years into the game). Then I was taunted with seemingly endless opportunities to grab provinces less pathetic than Ancona(several times in the case of Romagna). Every time either the target would ally with some very nearby powerful nation, the leader of my alliance would sign a peace deal and I had an auto ceasefire(one time while still sieging Romagna!), or all the other factions would make separate peaces, leaving me to deal with a 6,000 strong Papal army with my pathetic army of 1,000 men with sticks.

Then suddenly, in an orgy of bloodshed, nearly every country around me downed(actually, only two did, but they brought whole alliances with them).
The mighty army of Urbino fought valiantly against the Sicilio-Papal-Genoese-Venetian horde, but to no avail.

If I had it to do over again, I think I'd turn my king into a general right away and bumrush Siena before they have a chance to ally with his funny hattedness the Pope. It's a good city, with an income some 3x or so that of Ancona(which is very nearly the crappiest city in Italy, starting income wise).

I'll try to get a proper story up in the thread tomorrow.

Now the question is, who shall Zimfan bring to ruin next? Another small Italian city-state, perhaps Sienna, or maybe a one or two province German state, or somewhere a bit further away, like Trebizond? Maybe he can even ruin a country with a half decent starting position, like Switzerland, or Saxony.If anyone has any suggestions, I'll be happy to try them.

P.S. I'm beginning to notice that every time I accept an alliance offer with Cyprus, I lose. Coincidence, or Cypriot(Cyprese?) plot?
 

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I've always wanted to play as Urbino, but now I'm too scared to play as that nation...

I have a suggestion. Start on 1 January 1454, and select Oldenburg. Don't accept alliance offers from Cyprus, and you might do all right. ;)
 

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Zimfan said:
P.S. I'm beginning to notice that every time I accept an alliance offer with Cyprus, I lose. Coincidence, or Cypriot(Cyprese?) plot?


Or just play as Cyprus, that way you don't have to worry about their alliance offers. :)
 

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I'm not sure Trebizond is for you - in the far far away lands of the EU2 forums there are no less than two Trebizond World Conquest before 1650 AARs, it's a lot to live up to ;)

What about Navarre?
 

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Well, so far in my Oldenburg campaign I've managed to conquer Bremen, make Luneburg a vassal only to lose it to Brandenburg, get involved in a number of wars with larger nations in which I miraculously survive but gain nothing but inflation, Then became a vassal of Cologne. I'll try to get the story up tonight. Guess I'll keep playing, although I'm not sure I'll be getting anywhere. :p

Edit: Kept playing, and ended up in a spiraling cycle of loans, bankruptcy and inflation.

I'll put up stories (in this thread) for both my Urbino and Oldenburg campaigns tonight. The latter actually lasted a while, and a lot happened.

I think the next nation run into the ground should start out with more than 3 ducats, lest all my stories end up incredibly short. Would anyone have any objection to Wurtemburg or Brunswick? Neither has an aar in the library, and both have more respectable incomes, but still start out very small.
 
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Trondheim said:
I've always wanted to play as Urbino, but now I'm too scared to play as that nation...

I have a suggestion. Start on 1 January 1454, and select Oldenburg. Don't accept alliance offers from Cyprus, and you might do all right. ;)

I wouldn't take my failure as a reason not to play them. I haven't gotten past the point where I can do well with a minor nation. The tough thing about them is that not only do they have only one province, but they're poor for an Italian nation(Census tax: 3 or so Ducats). Bum rushing Siena early on might help with that, and if you got an opportunity to pick up Romagna or one of Tuscany's rich provinces, you'd be ok.
 

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Part Two: The Mighty Nation of Urbino


The mighty nation of Urbino is a small country in central-eastern Italy, on the coast of the Adriatic Sea. Unlike many of its neighbors it is not a rich country, and makes little in taxes. It has no university, but since the construction of its cathedral it's been among the most stable and happy of provinces.

It might have remained so forever, but for the ambition of one of its kings, Federigo. He was a king of modest abilities, known neither for brilliance or incompetence (stats=5/5/5). He had ascended to the throne in 1544, and the first nine years of his reign were quiet, but into his ninth year, in 1553, he began to grow concerned about the legacy he would leave after departing from this world. He decided that he would make Urbino great before his death.

That very year he began to set the stage for a greater Urbino. Alliances and royal marriages were exchanged with neighboring countries, including Sicily and Mantua. He invested much funding into scientific advances, and on occasion would mumble something about establishing a "Scientific Revolution" as a National Idea for Urbino, although what he meant by that is unkown.

Federigo prepared an army to attack Siena, but to his dismay they allied with the pope. Not willing to invoke the wrath of his funnyhattedness, and surrounded by larger nations, it looked as if his plans for expansion would be for naught. then in 1456 opportunity struck. The kingdom of Corsica rebeled from it's lord Genoa, but foolishly had no army and made no alliances. Federigo DOWed the nascent country and a fleet of cogs transported Urbino's army to the island.



After a year long siege the garrison of Corsica surrendered, and the nation was annexed. Urbino had doubled its territory. Over the next 6 years Federigo made many more attempts to expand his kingdom. In 1458 the Sicilo-Venetian-Urbino alliance declared war on the pope. Federigo marched an army to Romagna, a rich Papal province, but peace was made with the pope by alliance leader Sicily before he could take it.

A temporary peace fell over Italy for the next couple years, but it turned out to be the calm before the storm. Federigo was distracted by internal problems, such as uppity peasants and inefficient handling of problems by local nobles. Then in 1461 Urbino's ally Modena requested aid against the pope. Again a rush was made to Romagna, this time in a race with Modena's army. Federigo force marched his army, and beat the Modenans by a scant few days.

Perhaps envious of Federigo's good fortune, the Modenans convinced alliance leader Sicily to make peace with the pope. Undeterred, Federigo DOWed the pope again and continued to besige Romagna, when a wholely unexpected event occured. Little Siena, which had abandoned their alliance with the pope the first time Sicily attacked, declared war on his holiness and made the pope a vassal. Again the siege of Romagna was interrupted, and Siena's army was far too large for Urbino to take on.



A year later Sicly made a claim on Federigo's throne and attacked. Soon all the powers of Italy were embroiled in the war, with most coming against Urbino, a nation too weak to stand up to any of them. Before long both Genoa and Ancona were taken, and the kingdom of Urbino was divided up amongst the more powerful nations.

Well, there's part two of my series. :) Part three, The Demise of Oldenburg, should come within a day or two. Any comments on the new format(all narrative, without the gameplay stuff) are welcome. I had planned to just do a gameplay aar, but it didn't seem entertaining enough for an aar, especially as weak as my playing ability is. I think just writing a story turned out better.

Now I need to pick a new faction to ruin, er, run. I'm thinking a faction with a little more chance than an Oldenburg or Urbino. Wurtenburg comes to mind, with two provinces, one with a decent income, but I'd be happy to take suggestions. I'm kind of interested in Eastern Europe, but minors there look to be on the road to certain annexation. Hopefully this next game lasts long enough to get it's own thread, and not become a fourth part for this series.

Any suggestions?
 

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Zimfan said:
I wouldn't take my failure as a reason not to play them. I haven't gotten past the point where I can do well with a minor nation. The tough thing about them is that not only do they have only one province, but they're poor for an Italian nation(Census tax: 3 or so Ducats). Bum rushing Siena early on might help with that, and if you got an opportunity to pick up Romagna or one of Tuscany's rich provinces, you'd be ok.

I said that mainly because of the alliance. When I've played Italian minors before (The only ones I've played being Genice, Venoa, and Milan), one of the small OPM nations would DOW me and use their mind-controlling powers to bring the entire peninsula (or the white blob Austria) into the war.

Thank you for the advice, though. That should help whenever I get around to playing Urbino. :)

Anyway, good story about Urbino, can't wait to see Oldenburg. Württemberg seems like a good choice. Or you could try playing Serbia, as they start out with being at war with the Ottomans. :eek:
 

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I'm enjoying this a lot - it reminds me of why I play big muslim powers that can actually afford an army LOL

Good luck with your next attempt.

Other suicidal minors include Liege and Ashanti and you might have fun with one of the smaller Russian countries. You could also try the Golden Horde, 4 provinces, 1 COT, no forts.
 

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Very interesting. It is a shame so many games are going down the toilet, but goodness knows we've all had our fair share of defeat in EUIII. Might I suggest you choosing National Bank as your first NI so it can help you control inflation. Further, you should probably find a powerful benefactor to ally with as you navigate the early portions of the game.

Finally, Lorraine might be amusing. I think they start with two provinces in EUIII so you might have a better chance of maintaining. Regardless, good luck with any and all nations you choose next. This is a fine way to do a multi country AAR even if they all seem to lose out in the end. :(
 

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coz1 said:
Finally, Lorraine might be amusing. I think they start with two provinces in EUIII so you might have a better chance of maintaining. (

3-Lorraine, Barrois, Metz. And if you manage to get allied with Burgundy or France you can perfectly do what Lorraine AI does all the time - lead your big brother in an aggressive war every 3 years. Latest :).

Regards

Thorsten