Imperator - Development Diary - 19th of November

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Trin Tragula

Design Lead - Crusader Kings 3
Paradox Staff
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Aug 1, 2003
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Hello and welcome back to another Imperator Development Diary!

Today I will be talking about what National Ideas are in the game and also about the starting situation in the Southwestern part of the Mediterranean, the home of the mighty Republic of Carthage.

National Ideas
Much like in its predecessor, Europa Universalis:Rome, in Imperator you can tailor your country to your goals by picking national ideas. How many you can have active is dependent on your government type.

There are 36 different National Ideas that you can choose from (and they will be listed in this diary). Each idea has its own bonus and each belongs to one of four categories corresponding to the power types in the game. Selecting a new National Idea costs 50 Civic Power. Some are available to you at the start, others have to be unlocked by Advances during the course of the game.

As a rule Tribal governments can have two national ideas, while the more advanced government forms, like Republics and Monarchies, can have three (but there are exceptions to this rule).

Each government in the game comes with a base bonus specific to that government. There is also a secondary bonus for each government, that you will get if your country has ideas picked that correspond what is expected by the government form.

As you can see in the screenshot, Carthage is an Oligarchic Republic. This means that they can pick two Civic Ideas and one Oratory Idea, if they want their additional bonus.
For Rome, which starts as an Aristocratic Republic, this means it needs two Military Ideas and one Civic Idea to get the additional bonus.

National Idea Bonuses are of course still subject to change. Currently the National Ideas in the game are:

Military Ideas:

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Martial Ethos

Morale of Armies: +10%
Ensuring that our soldiers and veterans hold a prestigious place in the social hierarchy, is key to their contentment and loyalty.

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(requires Martial Advances 6)
Morale of Navies: +20%
The sea affects the very rise of and fall of empires. Dominance in this theater is vital to our interests.

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Elite Soldiery
(requires Martial Advances 12)
Discipline: +5%
Over-reliance on a reactionary militia leaves a nation at great risk of invasion, coup or collapse. A well trained standing army, is sure to protect against these threats.

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Permanent Shipyards

Trireme Cost: -50%
Establishment of permanent shipyards capable of constructing vessels of war, will ensure that skilled shipwrights are always at our beck and call.

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(requires Martial Advances 6)
National Manpower: +25%
Mandated military service for all those considered mature, is not only a duty - it is a privilege.

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Militarized Society
(requires Martial Advances 12)
Army Maintenance: -33%
Navy Maintenance: -33%
A society which honors its warriors, is one in which the young will grow up proud and eager to serve.

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Ordered Retreat

Unit Reorganization Cost: -50%
Retreat can be far from dishonorable. Ensuring that all our warriors have a plan of action in the event of having to fall back, will result in a much quicker recovery when they do.

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Siege Training
(requires Martial Advances 6)
Assault Ability: +15%
From oppida to forts, to walled cities, the world is full of fortified settlements. Adequately training our warriors to penetrate enemy walls will doubtlessly pay dividends.

Support of the People
(requires Martial Advances 12)
Hold Triumph Cost: -50%
Convincing our citizens of our national prowess is just as important as a victory itself.

Civic Ideas:

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Standardized Construction

Build Cost: -30%
Build Time: -30%
As our nation begins to require more and more civic buildings, it has become apparent that a standardized method of planning and construction would greatly reduce the cost and time invested.

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City Planning
(requires Civic Advances 6)
Build Slots: +1
Fitting buildings within a walled city becomes much more of an issue as population sizes grow. Adopting a grid-based approach to city planning will allow us to better account for available building space.

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Central Urban Spaces
(requires Civic Advances 12)
Province Loyalty: +0.03
Enlargement and renovation of the central forum within our capital will provide for additional civic building opportunities. It is of paramount importance that our subjects are proud of their capital.

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Complex Tariffs

Commerce Income: +33%
Whilst a simple tax on goods passing through our territory may be popular; a complex system will allow us to maximize revenue.

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Patronized Trading Posts
(requires Civic Advances 6)
Capital Import Routes: +3
Keeping a firm financial interest in the various trading outposts within our nation will allow us to exercise greater control over the flow of certain goods we deem valuable.

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Institute Tariff Exceptions
(requires Civic Advances 12)
Province Import Routes: +1
Giving our cities greater leniency in tariff control will enable them to attract better investments.

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Tax Farming

Global Slave Output: +20%
By shifting responsibility for tax collection to third parties, we can make far greater budget calculations, as well as avoid certain unfortunate responsibilities.

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Land Appropriation Reform
(requires Civic Advances 6)
Move Freemen Cost: -50%
Move Slaves Cost: -50%
Private ownership of land is a necessity. However, it is clear that where the state requires the use of certain territories, it must have the power to relocate those inhabiting them.

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Grain Stockpile
(requires Civic Tech 12)
Population Growth: +0.10%
Nobody can predict a bad harvest. We could, however, prepare for it. By always saving a surplus of grain, we would avoid starvation during particularly unfortunate seasons.

Oratory Ideas
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Sanctioned Privileges
Monthly Corruption: -0.1
By agreeing to look the other way from time to time, we can lessen our reliance on using currency as a tool for bribery.

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Strategic Propaganda
(requires Oratory Advances 6)
Wrong Culture Happiness Penalty reduced by 15%
By coordinating lines of communication with key members of the political, religious and civic spheres, we have the perfect tool to manipulate popular opinion.

idea_legislative_reform copy.png
Legislative Reform
(requires Oratory Advances 12)
Wrong Culture Group Happiness Penalty reduced by 15%
The institution of a standardized code of practice, while not necessarily changing the way our government operates, will surely calm the dissenters in our nation.

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Military Administration

Military Tradition Cost: -33%
By merging a clear, ordered bureaucratic framework into our military hierarchy, it becomes far easier to coordinate large military reforms.

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Patronized Scholars
(requires Oratory Advances 6)
Invention Cost: -20%
Embracing a reputation as a nation where scholars are to be lauded as well as patronized, is sure to yield rewards in the future.

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Functional Bureaucracy
(requires Oratory Advances 12)
Enact Law Cost: -33%
We cannot expect our citizens to simply become aware of changes in the way we run our nation - instituting a framework of bureaucrats, representatives and messengers is vital to spread word of our decisions.

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Permanent Ambassadors

Diplomatic Relations: +1
In certain diplomatic circumstances, it may benefit us to have a member of government installed as a permanent representative in the courts of our peers.

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Casus Belli
(requires Oratory Advances 6)
Aggressive Expansion Impact: -33%
Whatever our true intent, foreign tolerance for our wars is always greater if we have a legitimate reason for conquest. Being seen as protectors of liberty is often reason enough.

idea_hospitality copy.png
(requires Oratory Advances 12)
Improve Opinion Maximum: +33%
The duty of the host should be extended to all those who visit our nation. Especially those whom we wish to persuade...

Religious Ideas

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State Religion

Call Omen Cost: -25%
Incorporating our faith as a state entity will have significant political advantages.

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Religious Calendar
(requires Religious Advances 6)
Omen Duration: +100%
Feast days, festivals and holidays can be used to reinforce the importance of certain annual events. Setting these dates strategically, will have a positive effect on our nation.

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Mandated Observance
(requires Religious Advances 12)
Omen Power: +50%
Making religious observance a compulsory activity, will instill a healthy respect for the divine in our populace, from a young age.

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Sacrifice to the Gods Cost -33%
Reading the signs in the entrails of animals has a long history. With a willing haruspex, we could hold festival days at opportune moments, and further manipulate popular opinion at will.

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Tolerance of Pagans
(requires Religious Advances 6)
National Unrest: -2
The number of pagan, hybrid, or purely foreign religions making their way into our territory is vast. Allowing individuals the right to privately practice their own religion is sure to result in a more tolerant society.

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Institutional Proselytism
(requires Religious Advances 12)
Convert Pop Cost -33%
By amending our religious canon to mandate active proselytism, we should find that much of the work in converting pagans is done for us.

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Origin Myth

Ruler Popularity Gain: +50%
It would give our leadership much greater authority, if we were to suddenly discover that the origins of our nation can be traced back to the heroes of old...

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Divine Mandate
(requires Religious Advances 6)
Monthly Tyranny: -20%
Convincing our religious leaders to make a proclamation in support of our nation's divine mandate, will allow us to get away with making some of the more... controversial decisions, more easily.

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Loyalty to the State
(requires Religious Advances 12)
Monthly Loyalty: +0.05
Loyalty to our leader should imply loyalty to the state. Loyalty to the state, by extension, implies loyalty to the Divine.

Northwest Africa:
As in previous diaries we will also take a closer look at one of the geographical regions covered by the game today. This time we will leave the ongoing struggles of the Diadochi to instead inspect the starting situation of what would become Rome’s most famous rival, the Republic of Carthage.


In 304 BCE the Western Mediterranean has for centuries been subject to excursions by Greek and Phoenician traders and colonists. In time many of the cities founded by the latter have grown to form a strong and powerful league, led by the Great city of Carthage.

We have previously discussed the influence of Carthage in the developer diary on Italy. On the African continent this influence is even greater. It is the uncontested ruler of the seas, while relying on its many subject cities and the inland Numidian kingdoms to provide for its armies.

The Sicilian invasion led by Agathocles have, however, made two things apparent.

First: Some of the Carthaginian allies would happily support an invader.

Second: The Carthaginian empire is so thinly spread that it can be hard to respond quickly and adequately to an invasion.

Modern Tunisia, Africa to the Romans, was in some ways a very different place in 304 BCE. This lush agricultural landscape is a great exporter of Grain and agricultural goods, as well as base metals, spices and the famous Tyrian Purple dye that the Phoenicians have become so known for. The inland is in the hands of Carthaginian governors while the coastlines are controlled by the many cities that make up the Carthaginian sphere of influence.


Starting Countries:
  • Carthage: Carthage is not the oldest Phoenician settlement in the region, but over time it has become the richest and most influential. It is the undisputed leader of the Punic world and all other Phoenician self ruling cities are expected to obey and contribute to the common armies and navies. Much like the Roman Republic many of its constituent cities still retain a significant amount of autonomy. As mentioned in a previous diary, in the wake of Agathocles invasion the Carthaginian general Bomilcar tried to proclaim himself Tyrant over the city. With his execution Carthage has formally done away with the monarchy and is now only ruled by the council of elders and its Suffetes. When needed, Carthage has had no problem mustering great armies. Mostly it has been doing so by relying on the many armies of its subject states and by using its strong financial clout to enlist mercenaries from the entire Mediterranean world. A practice that is very different from its future rival in Rome.
  • Utica: Plutocratic Republic just north of Carthage itself. One of the oldest and richest Punic cities, Utica is perhaps more prestigious than Carthage itself in some ways. Over the years it has however been eclipsed by the rise of the great city to its south, relegated to pay the part of a supporting ally. Utica starts as a Feudatory of Carthage.
  • Kerkouane: Ancient Plutocratic Republic just east of Carthage, controls the closest mainland ports to Sicily and Cossyra. Kerkouane is perhaps best known for having been totally destroyed by Rome during the Punic wars. Kerkouane starts as a Feudatory of Carthage.
  • Hadrumetum: Rich trading city, one of the main ports of the Byssatis region, would become the capital of the area after Roman conquest. Hadrumetum and the other cities of Byssatis all joined Agathocles in the recent invasion of Africa. At our start Hadrumetum is a Feudatory of Carthage.
  • Leptis: Later known as Leptis Minor or Leptis Parva. Oligarchic Republic south of Hadrumetum in the Byssatis region. Leptis starts as a Feudatory of Carthage.
  • Thapsus: Another city of Byssatis, built by a natural source of Salt Thapsus is another Phoenician trading colony that has become part of the expansive Carthaginian state. Thapsus starts as a Feudatory of Carthage.
  • Achola: Phoenician Oligarchic Republic in southern Byssatis. Unlike the other cities of Byssatis, Achola did not join Agathocles in the recent Sicilian war in Africa. Achola starts as a Feudatory of Carthage.
Emporia & Tripolitania:
South of the main cities of Carthage lie the regions of Emporia and Tripolitania. Both are groups of cities that send their tribute to Carthage together. While the region isn’t as lush and rich as the Carthiginian heartland these states are still relevant as exporters of Fish Sauce, purple dye and salt. Closer to the Sahara and its oases they are also more subjected to raids from the peoples within it.


Starting Countries:
  • Tripolitania: Named for three cities (tri-poleis) of Sabratha, Oea and Leptis Magna, Tripolitania is an Oligarchic Republic with considerable autonomy and surprising economic muscle for its location. Far from the Carthaginian homeland it has had to care for its own protection against Greeks and Numidians alike. Tripolitania starts as a Feudatory of Carthage.
  • Emporia: Named for what it is, Emporia is a region of cities that provide the Carthaginian lands with goods from the desert peoples as well as from coastal manufacturing centers. Like Tripolitania, and unlike many of the other Punic cities, it has often found the need to defend itself against desert raiders using its own resources. Emporia starts as a Feudatory of Carthage.
  • Musulami: The first of the Numidian Tribal Kingdoms we will mention today. Musalami is the smallest of the tribal states in the Carthaginian sphere. In exchange for protection and trade the Musulami provide Carthage with soldiers and manpower for their wars. Musulami starts as a Tribal Vassal of Carthage.
While the power of Carthage can be felt even here, as the city controls a fair number of the trade ports of the region, Numidia is largely a region controlled by big tribal federations. The Massylians have often entered into arrangements with Carthage, selling their manpower and their cavalry for the right of trade and protection, but their main rival and diplomatic focus is the great Massaesylian tribal constellation further west.

At the northern end of the Sahara this region is also at times subjected to raids from desert peoples.

Should the conflicts between the Numidian kingdoms come to an end, and the region be unified, it may pose a credible threat to other states in the area. Especially Carthage, with its nearby capital and its control of almost all the ports of the Numidian region.


Starting Countries:
  • Massylia: Tribal kingdom in modern Algeria and Tunisia. The Massylians have for a long time provided the Carthaginians with troops and military resources for their wars. In the recent invasion by Agathocles they switched sides however and joined with the Greek invaders. Only when they realized how small the invading army actually was did the Massylians again switch sides, back to their Carthaginian overlords, an incident that Carthage would do much to forget. Massylia starts as a Tribal Vassal of Carthage.
  • Massaesylia: Tribal Kingdom in modern Algeria. Historically a rival of the other Numidian kingdom Massylia, but unlike them the Massaesylians are not aligned with Carthage. Making its capital in a former Carthaginian trade post in Siga the Massaesylians themselves often trade directly with the nearby Iberians and Mauritanians. Massaesylia starts independent and unaligned.
  • Iol: Small Plutocratic Republic in the ancient city of Iol, just west of the northern Carthaginian litoral. Maintaining close ties with the local peoples Iol is the westernmost city of significance at our start date. Iol starts as a Feudatory of Carthage.
Metagonia & Mauretania
The deep forests of the Riff is home to many North African Elephants. A species now extinct but which was famously used as a Carthaginian beast of war. Mauretania and Metagonia are in many ways wild and untamed regions to the Greeks, Romans and Carthaginians.

While Carthaginian trade posts dot the coastlines even here, the main powers are the kings of Mauritania and the Massaesylian federation.

While Carthaginian trade posts dot the coastlines even here, the main powers are the kings of Mauritania and the Massaesylian federation.

Starting Country:
  • Mauretania: Not much is known about this tribal kingdom until much later in our era when it interacts with the newly unified Numidian state. At the start Mauretania occupies the northern parts of what is today Morocco. Expansion without coming into conflict with Carthage will be hard, as they control all ports in this region. Population allowing, there is however a region that is still not settled by any state (even if populated by Mauretanian tribesmen).
That was all for today. I will be back next Monday with another Development Diary. :)
  • 1Like
Looks excellent! Is there gonna be any way to establish a republic from tribal type? Is it possible to some way even to regress in the goverment type? Like if you suffer territory loss or huge economical blows and your republic would be reduced to a tribal type of goverment?
Love these meaty dev diaries!
Looks great!

Also probably a typo, but "Strategic Propaganda" and "Legislative Reform" have the same -15% wrong culture penalty effect.

Also Carthage is the wrong shade of white. :p
Civic ideas a very weak... For example -33% for both naval and army maintenance will give you more spare money then anything you can find in civic ideas. Give something useful for those who can't pick only military ideas please.
Civic ideas a very weak... For example -33% for both naval and army maintenance will give you more spare money then anything you can find in civic ideas. Give something useful for those who can't pick only military ideas please.

Ironically, the civic ideas group has the biggest selection of OP ideas.
Can you switch National Ideas later in the game as you unlock tech or just want different bonuses at different times?

Yes, its just 50 civic power at any time.
Are the idea picks permanent? If they aren't is there a cool down on how long it is before you can switch them? I'm afraid they are going to be like the protestant bonuses in EU4, where it should feel like you're building your own church, but because you can switch them out so easily it doesn't really feel like it's something unique you're creating. Any elaboration on that?
Acragas is a tag in the game!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Ok, you sold it to me. I'm from there and I know how glorious this city was so I couldn't believe that you didn't put it in, but there it is!!!! It starts as a vassal/feudatory of Syracuse, I suppose?
Civic ideas a very weak... For example -33% for both naval and army maintenance will give you more spare money then anything you can find in civic ideas. Give something useful for those who can't pick only military ideas please.
You have no idea about game mechanics so you cannot judge something as "too weak". If anything, the 5% discipline Military idea can be "too weak" because we already know from a previous DD that 15% discipline is not OP
I love these dev diaries which have both information on mechanics and on a region of the map. Game is looking great!

Any chance we get a hint on whats coming in next week's DD? :p
Unless its been mentioned before and i missed it, i wonder what kind of control (direct and indirect) will we have over vassal's troops, given their importance to the overall strength of some of the period's militaries (e.g. Carthage, as was mentioned in this DD).

Maybe the ability to put some of them under the control of a Chartage general (i.e. direct control) depending on the level of feudatory relationship, for example? As opposed to EU IV's vassal stances.