• Crusader Kings III Available Now!

    The realm rejoices as Paradox Interactive announces the launch of Crusader Kings III, the latest entry in the publisher’s grand strategy role-playing game franchise. Advisors may now jockey for positions of influence and adversaries should save their schemes for another day, because on this day Crusader Kings III can be purchased on Steam, the Paradox Store, and other major online retailers.


    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

CollapsingHrungDisaster

Corporal
32 Badges
Feb 6, 2017
47
0
  • Knights of Pen and Paper 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Golden Century
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rule Britannia
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Surviving Mars
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mandate of Heaven
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Magicka
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Third Rome
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II
Hello!
I'm something of a newbie to the forums, but I'm a long-time lurker and AAR fan. After devouring the fantastic work of @volksmarschall and @Groogy some time ago, I experimented with writing a Wales AAR on my Facebook page. That went pretty well, so now I think it's time I gave it a go on the forums.

A few notes on the game and general style before I start off:

  • I adore EUIV's ability to deliver narrative-historical gameplay, and that shall be the focus of this game. I'm not going for a WC or hyper-efficient blobbing, but rather trying to craft a character-centred historical narrative. As such, I will be RPing many of my in-game decisions (though I'm not immune to wanting to play a good game) and the AAR will be focusing less on the grand strategy of my nation, but more on how the significant figures of my nation's history influence its journey. I probably won't be including much artwork in my posts as others have done, partly because of the lack of relevant Mesoamerican artwork and also because I am lazy.
  • I am playing with all the main DLCs except Rule Britannia and Third Rome, and a few scattered content packs. I buy DLC somewhat irregularly :p
  • The game will be Aztecs, starting in 1444. I wanted something a little different from the usual European games I'd been playing recently, whilst still providing an interesting arc for my country to go through, and they fitted the bill. I must acknowledge my debt to the fantastic Kings and Generals YT channel, whose recent series on Mesoamerican history has been of huge inspiration and guidance.
  • To add a little to the flavour and immersion, I will be trying to reflect the language of the Aztec in my posts. I don't speak Nahuatl, so am relying on whatever patchy dictionaries and translators I can find online. It won't be perfect, but it's better than nothing I think. On the subject of which, the title of this thread translates, roughly, to "History of the Mexica" (the Mexica being the tribal people who founded Tenochtitlan and formed the core of the Aztec triple alliance).
  • For general clarity, I shall be sticking to dates in the traditional AD/CE system and English month names rather than the Aztec’s own calendar system. Trying to explain the conversion between “year of the 12th reed” is more effort than I think is necessary.
  • The prologue contained in this post is probably going to be more detailed than the rest of the AAR will be, both to set the context of the rest of the playthrough and to tell the story of the early Aztec rise to power (I don’t claim to be an expert on this, and much of the history is debated, so feel free to challenge me on any of what I write during this bit!). During the early game, I probably won’t go into detail about all the wars I’m fighting, because early Aztec warfare is defined by the kind of near-constant conflict and vassal/tributary relationships that gets complicated and kinda boring rather quickly. We’ll figure it out as we go…
  • Advice and feedback greatly appreciated!

And so, without further ado:


Prologue: Children of Huitzilopochtli (1325-1444)


Lake Texcoco, 1325. Through the morning mist, a host of canoes slip silently across the water. At their head, an older man stops paddling for a moment and surveys the boats behind him. In the boats alongside him sit the priests, almost unrecognisable as such from this close up, without their ceremonial headdresses. The warriors are behind them, scores of young men with obsidian-edged mācuahuitl held tight alongside them. They in particular are restless. The rest follow on behind, carrying whatever possessions they own in their boats. With such a large group, progress is painfully slow.

Just a few days ago it had been so different. The Mexica tribe had been loyal servants to the altepetl of Culhuacan. Their soldiers had won acclaim in battle, their leaders had stood at the right hand of tlatoani Huehue Acamapichtli himself. But the Mexica were destined by the gods for greater things than as some prince’s lackey. When Huehue had sent his sister to govern the affairs of the Mexica, the priests had learned of the Gods displeasure, and Xipe-Totec, the farming god, had demanded her sacrifice. So said the priests, at any rate. When they presented her flayed skin to Xipe-Totec, his favourite form of offering, the omens improved- but Huehue found out. He had sent his men to attack them- the warriors had fought as well as they could, but the tribe had been forced to retreat. Ever since then, they had been travelling northwards. Every day prayers were sent to their patron god, Huītzilōpōchtli, but they had no sacrifices to offer him. The future seems bleak.

The old man sighs, and begins paddling again. He didn’t sleep yesterday, watching the boats; his muscles and brain alike feel slow and exhausted. Then, suddenly, a shape moves through the mist- a dark silhouette, flying across the lake. His eyes catch it, follow it quickly. Off over the water, to the west, he sees it settle on another dark shape, an island of some kind. His eyes strain to make it out, but then the mist clears. The shadowy form of the island, thick with vegetation, seems to rise out of the water in front of him- but then he sees it. On a promontary to the south of the island, a great eagle stands framed against the sky, its feet lost amidst the bulbs of a large, spreading cactus. Silhouetted amidst the yellow hue of the morning, there is something transcendant about its still form. For a moment, time seems to stand still- just the man and the eagle. Then, he sees it raise its wings. Another patch of mist rolls by, and it disappears from view.

“Did you see that?”, he asks. The priest, sat behind him in the canoe, stirs.

“See what?”

“The eagle. That island, over there- an eagle, sat on a cactus.”

Suddenly, the priest is on his feet, eyes blazing. He stares in the direction of the island’s shadowy form, shaded from view once again. He takes up his paddle, and begins to thrust the canoe towards it, propelling it through the water with powerful strokes. In a few minutes, they land on the muddy beach, and the priest stumbles onto it. He turns around to face the bewildered fleet.

“Brothers, sisters! Huītzilōpōchtli has sent us a sign! Here shall be our home! From here shall the Mexica rule!”





Tenochtitlan, 1418. The past century has been a busy one for the Mexica. On that lonely island in Lake Texcoco, they founded their city Tenochtitlan, dedicated to Huītzilōpōchtli. Theirs is one more among hundreds of city-states across the region, from the valleys and highlands of the north to the jungles of Guatemala to the south. But in their swampy home, the Mexica have done great things. They have built their first temples, great pyramids on which to glory the gods and send them their sacrifices. They have built canals, both throughout the city and connecting them to the mainland, through which goods, trade and captives flow. They now have a ruler, their Tlatoani Chimalpopoca, descended from the line of the Culhuacan rulers, and so too have risen the noble class of pipiltzin around him. But more than that, they have redefined what it means to be Mexica. And that means war.

For the Mexica are blessed by Huītzilōpōchtli, a god of war and death. He drives the Mexica in battle, no warriors are fiercer: but in return, his blessing must be used to serve him. All the gods demand sacrifice, be it in blood, animals or executed captives, but Huītzilōpōchtli is thirstier than them all. When the Mexica take the field, they are not so messy as to leave their foes rotting on the battlefield- a true warrior instead acquires captives, hundreds of them, to be laid upon the temple dais and have their still-beating heart offered up to Huītzilōpōchtli. Only by this constant feeding will he ensure that the sun survives each age, and continue to act as patron of the Mexica. So feed him they have, and through his blessings have the Mexica grown strong.

But others are stronger. Like his forefathers before him, Chimalpopoca has to deal with the mightiest altepetl of the Anahuac valley, the nation that first forced their ancestors to seek a home in Culhuacan: the Tepanec city of Azcapotzalco, and their mighty ruler Tezozomoc. Tezozomoc is an imposing man- despite being well into his nineties and travelling frequently in a fur-swaddled litter, his booming voice and powerful figure still demand the attention of all who share a room with him. His rage is legendary, but so too is his ferocity and cunning. And, through diplomacy and war, the shores of Lake Texcoco have become his. Trade and tribute flow through Azcapozalco like water; thousands bend the knee to him. But one altepetl refuses. In the ancient fortress of Texcoco, on the far banks of the lake that shares its name, the Chichimec ruler Ixtlixochitl still holds out defiantly against Tepanec dominion. Tezozomoc will suffer their insolence no longer, and calls his men to war.





The fight proves hard. Texcoco is in an excellent position; nestled against the marshy lake shore, with thick jungle and rugged terrain on all sides. Time after time Tepanec forces throw themselves against its walls and armies, and every time are forced back to lick their wounds. After a summer of besieging the city, Tezozomoc is all but ready to retreat and lick his wounds. But the Mexica have other ideas; the lake is their home, and they know it better than anyone. One night in September, a forest of canoes slip silently away from Tenochtitlan, heading east. They paddle their canoes into the thick swamps west of Texcoco, and unload their men; hundreds of soldiers, their mācuahuitl gleaming in the moonlight. Shortly after midnight, the Texcoco are awoken like a thunderbolt- hundreds of Mexica soldiers running through the streets, laying the torch to building after building and making their way towards the royal palace.

Some Texcoco soldiers attempt to fight the Mexica- but the Mexica reputation proceeds them. From the lowliest mācehualtin commoner to the noblest pipiltzin, every Mexica boy from the age of fifteen has been taught to fight, and their zealous dedication to Huītzilōpōchtli is unwavering. Fighting is how a Mexica proves himself, how he advances socially, how he shoes his dedication to the gods; war is everything to the Mexica. The Texcoco never stand a chance. By dawn, the royal palace has been gutted by flames, and Ixtlilxochitl’s corpse is offered up to Tezozomoc.

Tezozomoc is ecstatic, and lavish in his praise of Chimalpopoca’s warriors. Indeed, he goes so far is to give him a gift; the altepetl of Texcoco will now serve as a tributary of Tenochtitlan rather than Azcapozalco directly. The Mexica star is rising.



Azcapozalco, 1426. Tezozomoc the Great lies dying. Around his bedside stand a few of his closest family and allies. Now over a hundred, few can say he was not favoured by the gods, but it is still a shock for many to see such a legendary figure so close to death. As they watch, a feeble hand rises from the bedding, and reaches out towards his favourite son, Tayatzin. Tayatzin grasps his hand, and leans forward to hear the great man’s dying words:

“Azca… yours. Rule well”

Tayatzin nods, once.

Tayatzin is coronated quickly, and shortly afterwards departs for Tenochtitlan alongside his friend and ally Chimalpopoca. But trouble is browing. Tayatzin’s half-brother, Maxtla, ruler of the altepetl of Coyoacán, is quick to hear of his father’s death, and marches his men to Azcapozaltco to seize the throne. Tayatzin and Chimalpopoca are both publicly furious, and relations rapidly break down between the two cities. Tenochtitlan stops paying tribute, and bitter insults begin crossing the narrow lake straits.

For almost a year, neither side makes a move. But then, on a dark April night in 1427, a single canoe drifts out of the harbour at Azcapozaltco. Quietly it enters the canals of Tenochtitlan, and a single figure emerges near the royal palace. It carries no weapons but a small obsidian knife. When morning breaks, the assassin’s work is done. Tayatzin’s throat has been cut while he slept.

A week later, Chimalpopoca is restless; with the tlatoani dead, his prospects for a continued alliance with Azcapozaltco are drastically thinned. To fight the Azcapozaltco alone is daunting, almost suicidal. Bowing to Maxtla is almost as risky after such public opposition. He has asked the gods for answers, but the priests have yet to provide him with answers.

Chimalpopoca looks up. His uncle, Itzcoatl, one of his closest advisors, stands in the doorway to his chamber. A small group of pipitzlin are with him. Itzcoatl bows, and crosses the room to join Chimalpopoca.

“Have you decided yet? How shall we respond to the Tepanec dogs?”

“Not yet,” replies Chimalpopoca. “Not until the omens have been determined. I cannot make a decision until then.”

Itzcoatl nods sagely. “Maybe not. But I can.”

With that, his arm swings round, his hands clasped around a rope. Before Chimalpopoca can realise what’s happening, Itzcoatl is behind him, pulling the rope tight around his neck. Chimalpopoca falls to his need, scrabbling at his throat, gasping for air as the room slowly fades around him. After a minute, he falls limp. Itzcoatl holds on for another thirty seconds, before letting him drop to the floor. He looks up at the pipitzlin who have now entered the room.

“Another assassin. Tepanec scum. We shall not suffer their kind to rule again.”


Tenochtitlan, 1427. Itzcoatl is tlatoani now, and he is not interested in laying down. He calls a meeting with Nezahualcoyotl, tlatoani of Texcoco and a former ward of Tenochtitlan. He too is a firm enemy of Maxtla and has returned to Tenochtitlan with an idea. Nezahualcoyotl is more than just a king; he is a poet, a philosopher, a theologian, but also a diplomat with a bold vision. The Tepanec rule almost all the cities in the Anahuac valley, and neither Texcoco nor Tenochtitlan can fight them alone; but they are not the only atlepetl dissatisfied with Tepanec dominion. He proposes a grand alliance, a coalition of city-states to overthrow their rule. Itzcoatl agrees, and sends out envoys. The coalition is joined by the cities of Tlacopan and Huexotzinco, as well as some smaller powers: and now the war is on.

Maxtla isn’t unready. No sooner does he hear of an army on the move from Texcoco, he rallies his forces, and marches towards Tenochtitlan. He hopes to be able to cut off the head of the rebellion quickly, before troops from Texcoco arrived, and initially it seems that he had moved well. After facing initially stern resistance, Maxtla’s larger force is eventually able to gain control of the Tenochtitlan supply canals, and he begins moving his troops across. But he has underestimated Itzcoatl’s diplomacy. During the siege, thousands of coalition troops under Nezahualcoyotl rampaged through the lands around Texcoco, and at the crucial hour they arrive to save Tenochtitlan. They surround the Tepanec from the landward side, whilst Mexica warriors face them from Tenochtitlan, and the battle turns into a bloodbath. Thousands are cut down or captured, and Maxtla himself flees with the coalition army hot on his heels. By March, it is all over. Azcapozaltco is sacked, reduced to a shadow of its former self, and Maxtla is taken prisoner. Nezahualcoyotl sacrifices Maxtla himself on the altar of Quetzocoatl.

upload_2018-10-6_18-14-17.png

Let's all just agree to ignore the Spanish writing at the top and pretend this is in-universe...



But the war has got the tlatoani thinking. Through little more than some well-chosen words, they have overthrown the greatest power their world has ever known. Through unity, there clearly lies great strength. Nezahualcoyotl’s mind whirs, and his envoys are dispatched.

Six months later, three men stand in Tenochtitlan: Nezahualcoyotl, Itzcoatl, and the tlatoani of Tlacopan, Totoquihuaztli. Together, they form the Triple Alliance; a promise, that their cities and people shall fight together and divide the spoils of conquest between them. From now on, they will not be Mexica or Tepanec or Acolhua, but united by a tighter bond of friendship and heritage. Together, they are Aztec.



Tenochtitlan, 1444. More than 15 years later, and the Aztec triple alliance remains strong. Nezahualcoyotl has rebuilt his kingdom, and Texcoco is now home to some of the greatest temples, gardens, palaces and libraries in the land- a fitting home for the poet-king. Azcapozaltco has been reduced to a mere tributary of Tlacopan. But the heart of the alliance lies in Tenochtitlan; buoyed by gold pouring in from her tributaries, the city has boomed. Now home to more than 100,000 people, her canals are filled with a constant flow of traders, and great temples dot the skyline. Itzcoatl’s nephew, Moctezuma I, is now the effective ruler of an Aztec state greater even than the old Tepanec empire. Now, the great tlatoani’s mind turns to expansion. Soon, soldiers will once again march across the Anahuac valley…

upload_2018-10-6_18-14-31.jpeg

 
Last edited:

stnylan

Compulsive CommentatAAR
119 Badges
Aug 1, 2002
36.571
2.477
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
  • Rome Gold
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis III: Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Europa Universalis: Rome Collectors Edition
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Darkest Hour
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Cities in Motion
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Deus Vult
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
Welcome to AAR writing (on the forums!)

A nice set of narrative snippets. Well chosen moments.
 

volksmarschall

NE PLVS VLTRA
31 Badges
Nov 29, 2008
5.802
235
littales.com
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Victoria 2
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Darkest Hour
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
This should be fun. I don't nearly play enough as any of the NW powers. And it's great to know that I've played a small part in your coming into AARland! The cycle continues since that is how I came to register after some time of "lurking" too. Carve out a mighty empire and let's see we you go and what you do from there!

So welcome to AARland. May this, your first AAR, be a memorable and successful one. As all firsts should be!
Cheers!
 

Specialist290

Field Marshal
77 Badges
Feb 25, 2006
6.152
1.035
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Stellaris
  • Darkest Hour
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • BATTLETECH
  • Prison Architect
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Supreme Ruler: Cold War
  • Supreme Ruler 2020
  • Sword of the Stars
  • Rome Gold
  • King Arthur II
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Tyranny: Archon Edition
  • 500k Club
Welcome to the forums! :D

I really can't do much more than echo the sentiments of those who have come before -- it's always good to see a new AAR author 'round these parts, especially one with such measures of talent and enthusiasm as yours. I'll most definitely be keeping an eye on this.
 

CollapsingHrungDisaster

Corporal
32 Badges
Feb 6, 2017
47
0
  • Knights of Pen and Paper 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Golden Century
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rule Britannia
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Surviving Mars
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mandate of Heaven
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Magicka
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Third Rome
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II
Welcome to AARland!
This should be fun. I don't nearly play enough as any of the NW powers. And it's great to know that I've played a small part in your coming into AARland! The cycle continues since that is how I came to register after some time of "lurking" too. Carve out a mighty empire and let's see we you go and what you do from there!

So welcome to AARland. May this, your first AAR, be a memorable and successful one. As all firsts should be!
Cheers!
I eagerly look forward to more:)
Welcome to the forums! :D

I really can't do much more than echo the sentiments of those who have come before -- it's always good to see a new AAR author 'round these parts, especially one with such measures of talent and enthusiasm as yours. I'll most definitely be keeping an eye on this.
Thanks to all of you for the kind words. It's been a pretty hectic week for me so far, but I'm hoping to finish writing the first proper installment at the weekend
 

CollapsingHrungDisaster

Corporal
32 Badges
Feb 6, 2017
47
0
  • Knights of Pen and Paper 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Golden Century
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rule Britannia
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Surviving Mars
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mandate of Heaven
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Magicka
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Third Rome
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II
Before I start with this, a couple of apologies. Firstly, images: during the early part of this campaign I was rather lax on taking enough screenshots, so the chapters up to about 1500 will have a lot of text and not many images. It will improve later on. Secondly, length: this particular chapter covers an extremely short timespan of just eight years and one war, and completely violates my previous rule about not focusing too much on early-game wars. I've done this to try and set the scene for the ongoing campaign a little more, particularly in relation to the growing Aztec enthusiasm for human sacrifice during the mid 15th century, and because that first war was a long time coming and rather kickstarted the rest of the campaign. I'll try to follow up with the next chapter rather more quickly so we can get moving properly.
And so, without further ado...

upload_2018-10-14_13-17-57.jpeg

Chapter 1: The Brothers Acamapichtli (1450-58)

Tenochtitlan, 1450. Moctezuma is catapulted to wakefulness like a thunderbolt. The room shudders and shakes around him, bits of stonework cracking and spitting rubble across the floor and furniture. For what seems like an eternity his room is a maelstrom of noise and motion, before the earthquake finally subsides. Moctezuma rises, shakily, to his feet, and walks over to a doorway, shouting for his servants, and looks out over the city. The carnage is everywhere; entire canals are filled with rubble, a yawning crack has split up the side of the great temple, and the screams of terrified macehualtin echo up towards him. Earthquakes are not uncommon here, but this is the first time he has seen one so destructive.

It could not have come at a worse time. The harvest season last year was exceptionally wet, destroying much of the farmland around Lake Texcoco’s perimeter and causing widespread flooding. This year, the lake has run low with drought, and many of the poorer macehualtin are starving. And now, this; the state can scarce afford to repair the damage.

Two hours later, Moctezuma is sat across from his half-brother, Tlacaelel. If Moctezuma is the face of the Aztec, Tlacaelel is the power behind the throne. His negotiations with Nezahualcoyotl were critical in the formation of the triple alliance and ensuring Tenochtitlan’s pre-eminence; and now, as Cihuacoatl, he handles much of the realm’s administration. His face is grave.

“You can’t deny it any more brother. The gods are angry with us. We have grown, but Huitzilopochtli needs feeding to suit.”

Moctezuma rankles. He is no theologian like his brother; to him, the priests are just the whiny men who keep moaning about “omens” rather than solving problems themselves. The gods need sustenance, of course, but…

But Tlacaelel is right. The earthquake is too clear a sign. Moctezuma sighs, and nods. “True. But what can I do? There are few enough beasts left in the breeding pens as it is, what with the macehualtin stealing them.”

“Brother, dogs and eagles can barely sate Huitzilopochtli’s hunger. With his sacrifice he gave us life, we must return in kind. Men, we need men upon the altar.”

Moctezuma grinds his teeth. “Tlaca, you know as well as I do that we cannot gather go to war now. The commoners are starving everywhere- even if we could put together an army, we couldn’t hope to lay a siege. And where could we attack, anyhow?”

This is an old sticking point for Moctezuma. After rapid expansion during the early years of his reign, he has found himself gridlocked by a web of alliances stretching from sea to sea. None are as tight as the Aztec triple alliance, but others are more numerous. The Tlaxcala confederacy in particular have been brazen in their insults towards Tenochtitlan, but could call on quarter of a million men from Tarascan to Zapotec were Moctezuma to respond with force.

Tlacaelel shakes his head. “I never said they needed to be captives. If some men will starve anyway, why not let them sustain life for the rest of us?”

The question hangs in the air. It’s an odd prospect to Moctezuma. Even after the Tepanec war, there were only a few hundred sacrifices; nothing of that scale has been seen since. But every Mexica boy knows that to die on the altar is a noble end for a warrior; redemption for those who have fallen in battle. And surely the gods are pleased by such devotion.

He nods. “Send out the call for volunteers. If there are not enough, send warriors. If the gods are willing, we will survive this year. Then shall we rebuild.”

upload_2018-10-14_13-17-16.jpeg

Tepeacac, 1454. The past four years have been good to the Aztec. Tlacaelel’s reform efforts have whipped the priesthood into a fever pitch; there have been nearly three hundred human sacrifices across this year’s festivals alone, and it is still not yet summer. The city is largely rebuilt, rains have returned to their usual patterns, and Moctezuma has supervised the damming of some of the rivers leaving Lake Texcoco to improve irrigation control. And all the while, Moctezuma has been indulging his real passion for the military. His warriors have been drilled and re-drilled to within an inch of their lives- and now, Moctezuma’s mind turns to his southern border, and the Mixtec Confederacy.

The Mixtec are not a state but a people; a collection of city-states, like the Aztec, united by culture and language. Whilst the Confederacy are not an alliance like the Aztec, or even a true state, the agreement acts as a defensive pact; an effort to repel foreign invaders. Now, Moctezuma will put that to the test. With an army more than 200,000* strong at his back, he marches south towards Coixtlahuaca.

[*No, I’m not exaggerating. Mesoamerican warfare was fought on a huge scale in comparison to contemporary European armies, since pretty much every able man served as a warrior- and the Aztec state was big. When Moctezuma invaded the Mixtec IRL, he did so with an army of around 300,000, including porters. EU4 modulates these numbers for obvious reasons; in game terms, this war was fought with my 8k stack and condottieri from surrounding states].

The Mixtec are not about to roll over easily. All the altepetl of the region send men to swell their army, whilst diplomats and pochtecatl scurry across the land to seek help from the Zapotec and Tlaxcalan territories. But Tlacaelel has not been idle either- whilst his brother marches to war, he is playing politics. The Mixtec altepetl have a long-standing rivalry with the Tlapanec kingdoms to their east, and it doesn’t take much to encourage them to join the fray. Additionally, he is able to persuade the Totonac in the north to aid the Aztec cause, in exchange for a share of the loot and promises of independence. Suddenly the Mixtec are fighting on three fronts, forcing them to tie up their forces on their eastern border and splitting their allies.

Still the war is not easy on the Aztec. The Mixtec and their allies adopt a guerrilla strategy, harrying the fringes of the enormous Aztec army and raiding Aztec territory, just enough to slow their progress. Twice Moctezuma occupies the northern Mixtec altepetl, only to be forced back by news of Zapotec forces approaching Lake Texcoco. The war hangs in the balance

Coixtlahuaca, 1457
. The greatest of the Mixtec cities is under siege. Moctezuma has been here for three months, and the city is just starting to show signs of breaking. But bad news has come. The pochtecatl have sent word that the Zapotec have joined up with Mixtec forces and have marched straight for Tenochtitlan. Moctezuma’s home is besieged, just as he is besieging theirs. As the pochtecatl tells his story, the emperor’s eyes begin to smoulder. The pochtecatl clears his throat, nervously. Moctezuma’s imposing figure is a terrifying enough presence, even without the reputation for his legendary rage. His speech now nervous and harried, the merchant continues with his tale. Moctezuma never breaks eye contact.

At last, the room falls quiet. The pochtecatl glances around, nervously. Moctezuma strokes his chin. He had started this war hoping for a quick conquest, not the bloody, attritional affair it has become. He is so close to victory now, but if Tenochtitlan falls it may all be for nothing.

At last, he speaks, in a rumbling baritone. “Keep the siege. Tenochtitlan will hold”.

It takes months; all through the rainy season, and then some. Coixtlahuaca is in a defensible position, and its defenders are spirited. But in the end, the siege takes its toll, and the local nobility offer terms. Moctezuma accepts the city’s surrender, leaves 50,000 men to keep the locals in line, and begins a rapid march north in search of the tlatoani and his army.

The two forces finally clash in December. The battle is colossal; hundreds of thousands of men engaged in vicious single combat, blood-flecked obsidian flashing in the sunlight. But in the end, Moctezuma has done his work well. He not only outnumbers the Mixtec, but his troops are simply better trained, better equipped and better organised than anything they can muster. Aztec militarisation wins out once again, and the Mixtec are routed in short order. Hundreds of captives begin the trek to the great pyramid at Texcoco.

Moctezuma’s forces have insufficient control of the Mixtec territories to demand their complete surrender. Instead, he merely places his cousins on the thrones of a few altepetl in the wealthy Coyolapan region, and demands tribute from the rest of the Mixtec cities. But not just gold. Tlacaelel was right- the gods demands the blood of men to sustain them. At the feast of Tlaloc in March, the blood of nearly two thousand subjugated captives runs down the steps of Tenochitlan’s pyramids.

upload_2018-10-14_13-16-54.jpeg
 
Last edited:

stnylan

Compulsive CommentatAAR
119 Badges
Aug 1, 2002
36.571
2.477
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
  • Rome Gold
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis III: Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Europa Universalis: Rome Collectors Edition
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Darkest Hour
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Cities in Motion
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Deus Vult
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
The blood has only just began to flow
 

alscon

Magister Inquisitiones
73 Badges
Feb 28, 2013
2.925
811
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury Pre-order
  • Crusader Kings II: Monks and Mystics
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Stellaris
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Stellaris Sign-up
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Tyranny: Archon Edition
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mandate of Heaven
  • BATTLETECH
  • Surviving Mars
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization
  • Age of Wonders: Planetfall Premium edition
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife Pre-Order
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife
  • Age of Wonders: Planetfall Sign Up
  • Age of Wonders: Planetfall Deluxe edition
  • Stellaris: Distant Stars
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • BATTLETECH: Flashpoint
  • Stellaris: Megacorp
  • Imperator: Rome
  • Imperator: Rome Sign Up
  • Age of Wonders: Planetfall
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Age of Wonders: Planetfall - Revelations
  • Age of Wonders: Planetfall Season pass
  • Victoria 2
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Mount & Blade: With Fire and Sword
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
A good start. First sacrifices found - hopefully there will be enough to avert doom from whatever may come from the unknown...
 

CollapsingHrungDisaster

Corporal
32 Badges
Feb 6, 2017
47
0
  • Knights of Pen and Paper 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Golden Century
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rule Britannia
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Surviving Mars
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mandate of Heaven
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Magicka
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Third Rome
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II
upload_2018-10-16_23-23-2.jpeg


Chapter 2: New Moon Rising (1459-68)

Tenochtitlan, 1459. Beneath the morning sun, Tlacaelel stands atop the pyramid to Huitzilopichtli. At the altar stands his brother, alongside a young man named Cacamatzin Quahuatl. The muscular youth kneels before the emperor, his head bowed, as Moctezuma draws an obsidian knife from his belt. The blade swings, and blood sprays across the altar… but it is Moctezuma’s blood. From the new wound on his arm, the emperor sends his life force dripping across Cacamatzin’s back.

Fifteen years before, the priests had prophesied his birth- a child born during a total eclipse of the sun to an unmarried pipiltzin woman, his coming blessed by the gods. Taken from his mother and given the finest martial education possible, he now faces his greatest test- his coming of age blooding. With the Azec at war once again, this time on three fronts against the Zapotec, Tlapanec and Tlaxcala, Cacamatzin must raid his country’s foes with a dozen other youths and return with captives to prove his manhood. Tlacaelel has high hopes for him.

Cacamatzin succeeds more than Tlacaelel could have hoped for, returning with no less than nine men captured by his hand. As the captives are sent to Tlaloc’s pyramid, Cacamatzin is command of twelve divisions in the south, and the results are spectacular. His forces march on Teloloapan and lay siege to it. A few weeks later*, he leads a strike force into the city at midnight by swimming along a narrow river passing through the outer walls. His men open the gates, and the sack begins. The following year Cacamatzin is off campaigning again, his army surprising the Tlapanec army at Tohancapan and winning a crushing victory. With their army broken and thousands taken captive, the Tlapanec sue for peace. Ultimately, they and the Zapotec are made to bend the knee, the Tlaxcalan nobility are forced to flee their home city, and the Aztec take control of the Tlapanec gold mines. Cacamatzin returns home a hero.



Texcoco, 1465. It has been three years since the end of the last war. Altepetl stretching from the northern highlands to the edge of the Yucatan send tribute to the Anahuac valley, and the shores of Lake Texcoco are growing fat and wealthy from it. Tenochtitlan has seen the lions’ share of the spoils, now home to around 180,000 people and sprouting canals at a tremendous rate- and Texcoco, under the enlightened guidance of the now-elderly Nezahuacoyotl, teems with libraries, schools, and zoological gardens. But that is not why the brothers Acamapichtli have come to visit the old Tlatoani. Something is rotten in the state of Aztec.

It is becoming rapidly apparent, at least to Nezahuacoyotl, that the government of the triple alliance is not up to the task of administering such a large empire. Each year, the tributes from subjugated altepetl have been decreasing, and his spies have reported whispers of more organised resistance against Aztec rule to come. Small wonder, especially after the tlatoani of Tlapanec was sacrificed at the last feast of Xilonen.

To Nezahuacoyotl, the answer lies in careful politick and sweeping administrative reform. Moctezuma, however, doesn’t see it that way.

“The cities will rebel only if they sense weakness. Three years of peace may be enough time for them to forget- but if we show our strength, remind them how they were made to send tribute, they will not do so again in a hurry. Our armies are idle- let us fight!”

Nezahuacoyotl smiles, almost wearily. “Dear boy, some day you will learn that not every problem can be solved at the point of a tepoztopili. After the earthquake, did you rebuild the pyramid with a macahuitl? You can fight rebels until the end of days and still find yourself having done nothing more than kept the problem at bay. Do you wish for your legacy to simply be more armies to fight without gain?”

Moctezuma stands and spreads his arms wide, looming over the old man. “Then our children shall be warriors also!” He turns to Tlacaelel. “Isn’t that right? To fight, to win captives, to keep the gods sustained- isn’t that how we keep the world whole? If my legacy is for the sun to rise each morning still, there should be no shame in that!”

Tlacaelel nods with fervent conviction. “Huitzilopichtli shall be our salvation”

“And where, then,” Nezahuacoyotl replies, drily “do you plan on attacking this time? The southern tlatoani already pay tribute, and I have told you before that you cannot hope to fight Michoacán* alone. Or were your promises of peace just empty words to the Totonac?”

[*Michoacán is the Nahuatl name for the state of Tarascan, home to the Purepecha people to the east of the Aztec homelands and their biggest regional rival; the name “Tarascan” is a bit of a kangaroo translation that comes courtesy of the Spanish. I shall refer to them as Tarascan from hereon in, but thought I’d throw this in as a neat little tidbit.]

At this, Tlacaelel steps forward. “I have given this some thought. The Purepecha are strong indeed- but the Maya are fractured. We already have friends among the Itza- they can give us man and safe passage. The K’iche are within our grasp.”

“Within our grasp? Guatemala is a thousand miles away, you might as well declare war on the sea. How on earth will we gain victory

Moctezuma grins. “With fire and obsidian.”



Guatemala, 1466. Cacamatzin pauses for breath amidst the hot, sticky jungle. It is the start of the wet season, and the humidity is murderous, water condensing out of the air onto men’s eyes and fingernails. For a man used to the cooler climate of highlands, it is close to unbearable.

Still, as a purely military endeavour the war has been undeniably successful. Despite his reluctance, Nezahuacoyotl has given Moctezuma an army: and Moctezuma has gone on a rampage through the K’iche’s Xiu allies, slaughtering every army he can find and leaving burned city after burned city in his wake. Meanwhile, Cacamatzin’s journey through Itza territory has been without incident, the Itza themselves have been gleefully raiding K’iche territory; and now, at last, Cacamatzin can see a city through the trees. Q’umarkaj; the jewel in the Guatemalan crown.

Cacamatzin’s forces set up a siege, but are slow in doing so, allowing the K’iche to send word to their main army. Unfortunately, that was exactly what Cacamatzin was hoping for. When the K’iche arrive three days later, their column is set upon from both sides by troops hidden in the trees. It is a massacre. Q’umarkaj falls soon afterwards, and they too bend the knee to Aztec rule.

upload_2018-10-16_23-24-30.jpeg


Tenochtitlan, 1467. Moctezuma stands again atop the pyramid to Huitzilopichtli, in full ceremonial garb. As he is handed the still-twitching heart of the sacrificed K’iche ruler, and raises it above his head, the roar of a hundred thousand Aztec citizens sweeps over him like an ocean of noise. But this ceremony has another climax to follow. At a prearranged signal, Cacamatzin appears to renewed cheers, and stands beside his emperor- clad head to foot in the pelt of a jaguar. He kneels, and Moctezuma’s booming voice proclaims him to all as the First Ocēlōtl [Jaguar Warrior] of the Aztec.

The promotion is more than just symbolic. Cacamatzin’s effect on the army has been clear for all to see; his generalship, his attention to military organisation, and his use of differently-armed divisions in different tactical roles, are all innovations deployed to stunning effect. In particular, Moctezuma has taken note of his use of “special forces” squads, and has given his blessing to expand their use into the new elite Jaguar and Eagle warrior divisions, open to any who prove themselves worthy in battle. The animal skins were Tlacaelel’s idea, to imbue the soldiers with the beasts’ strength and vitality- and to strike terror into the heart of their foes. Moctezuma’s forces seem unstoppable.



Texcoco, 1467. Nezahuacoyotl sits in his chamber, listening to a message from Tenochtitlan. The news is not good. Having pacified their western border, the Cazonci of Tarascan has turned his attention east. His forces are now pillaging into Aztec-controlled territories hunting for loot and captives- and with the Aztec now even more overstretched since the Guatemalan war, the delicate tributary network has broken down. The flow of gold and goods into Tenochtitlan has all but dried up, the metropolis is in danger of famine if the Purepecha forces are not repelled soon, and the army are scattered and disorganised from futile efforts to repel the raiders. War has come again.

Nezahuacoyotl sighs. He will honour the alliance, that goes without saying… but he wishes there had been another way.

upload_2018-10-16_23-24-11.jpeg
 

Attachments

Last edited:

Specialist290

Field Marshal
77 Badges
Feb 25, 2006
6.152
1.035
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Stellaris
  • Darkest Hour
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • BATTLETECH
  • Prison Architect
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Supreme Ruler: Cold War
  • Supreme Ruler 2020
  • Sword of the Stars
  • Rome Gold
  • King Arthur II
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Tyranny: Archon Edition
  • 500k Club
This has been quite a bloody decade for the Aztecs. They have grown in strength and stature, but that newfound position has brought unwanted attention from those jealously guarding their own power as well. This war could well make or break the power of the Triple Alliance over all Mesoamerica.
 

stnylan

Compulsive CommentatAAR
119 Badges
Aug 1, 2002
36.571
2.477
  • 500k Club
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis III Complete
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Europa Universalis: Rome
  • Rome Gold
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Rome: Vae Victis
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis III: Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Europa Universalis: Rome Collectors Edition
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Cities: Skylines - After Dark
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Darkest Hour
  • Arsenal of Democracy
  • Hearts of Iron II: Armageddon
  • Cities in Motion
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Deus Vult
  • Europa Universalis III
  • Europa Universalis III: Chronicles
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • For The Glory
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
Nezahuacoyotl must hate being right, sometimes.

BTW in the Guatemala post you have a typo in the date
 

volksmarschall

NE PLVS VLTRA
31 Badges
Nov 29, 2008
5.802
235
littales.com
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • March of the Eagles
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Victoria 2
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Mount & Blade: Warband
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Darkest Hour
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
Central America needs to be greener! ;)
 

SibCDC

Mayor of Königsberg
24 Badges
Nov 4, 2015
601
22
www.youtube.com
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Cities: Skylines - Snowfall
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife Pre-Order
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Stellaris
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Stellaris: Megacorp
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Hearts of Iron IV: La Resistance
Tenochtitlan, 1467. Moctezuma stands again atop the pyramid to Huitzilopichtli, in full ceremonial garb. As he is handed the still-twitching heart of the sacrificed K’iche ruler, and raises it above his head, the roar of a hundred thousand Aztec citizens sweeps over him like an ocean of noise.
I am currently taking a course at my university about Precolumbian and colonial history of Latin America and it turns out that what you are describing here is a common stereotype about the Mesoamerican people. It is also portrayed in Mel Gibson's Apocalypto where thousands of people watch someone being sacrificed on a temple. In fact it was forbidden for the common people to enter the sacred area around temples. Only priests and nobility (which were often the same people) were allowed inside these areas. For that reason, the Spanish missionaries had trouble convincing the Aztec people to attend church services, because they were used to not being allowed in sacred places.
 

CollapsingHrungDisaster

Corporal
32 Badges
Feb 6, 2017
47
0
  • Knights of Pen and Paper 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Golden Century
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rule Britannia
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Surviving Mars
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mandate of Heaven
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Magicka
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Third Rome
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II
Nezahuacoyotl must hate being right, sometimes.

BTW in the Guatemala post you have a typo in the date
Edited, thanks for the heads up :) Nezahuacoyotl is rapidly turning into my favourite of the real-life characters in this AAR.

It's a shame he's not going to live much longer

I am currently taking a course at my university about Precolumbian and colonial history of Latin America and it turns out that what you are describing here is a common stereotype about the Mesoamerican people. It is also portrayed in Mel Gibson's Apocalypto where thousands of people watch someone being sacrificed on a temple. In fact it was forbidden for the common people to enter the sacred area around temples. Only priests and nobility (which were often the same people) were allowed inside these areas. For that reason, the Spanish missionaries had trouble convincing the Aztec people to attend church services, because they were used to not being allowed in sacred places.
Thank you! I shall remember that for the future; I'm trying to correct my historical misconceptions on this run, learning a lot in doing so (e.g. editing out any mention of a snake in the "eagle on cactus" part of the prologue). Any other pointers you can send going forwards will be greatly appreciated!
 

CollapsingHrungDisaster

Corporal
32 Badges
Feb 6, 2017
47
0
  • Knights of Pen and Paper 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Golden Century
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rule Britannia
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Surviving Mars
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mandate of Heaven
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Stellaris
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Magicka
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Third Rome
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II
Central America needs to be greener! ;)
Give me time, she will be...

On that note, actually, a quick pointer for those who don't play much in this part of the world: the way the Nahuatl game is designed requires you to be constantly acquiring vassals, rather than land, as you need 5 vassals in order to pass reforms and more land increases your doom faster. Each time you pass a reform, you lose all your vassals and have to reconquer them again (which is what has just happened at this point in the playthrough, having passed the "warrior ranks" reform). This is meant to simulate the high autonomy and constant state of tributary warfare present in contemporary Mesoamerica- for gameplay purposes, this means that once you've got started you're perpetually subjugating someone, all your vassals are at 100% liberty desire at all times, and your AE is through the roof. The best way to combat this is to double down on the "always fighting, all the time" policy so that truce timers prevent any kind of coalition or vassal alliance from forming.

Aren't flavour mechanics wonderful? :D