- Jan 16, 2014
It could not have been that the Austro-Prussian War of 1862 was truly unexpected; for years Prussia had been the rising power in the Northern Germanic states, and surely it was have been only a matter of time before they made a bid for hegemony over all the Germanic nations. Italy, too, was on the rise; ever since their unification the previous year, and subsequent forcible annexation of the remnants of the Papal States, it was inevitable they would attempt to complete their Risorgimento by acquiring Venice. Likewise, it is not truly surprising that the wars should be lost, for fighting on two fronts with a poorly-equipped and badly-led force is hardly a recipe for success. Nonetheless, what is surprising is that the war should have been lost so quickly and humiliatingly, as Austrian forces proved unable to stop either the Prussian alliance from occupying parts of Bohemia and Lower Silesia or Italian troops from running almost unhindered around Venetia – and, in the case of the II. Kavalleriekorps, to stop themselves from being utterly destroyed in the crushing rout of Tesin. More surprising, perhaps, is that Austria should have managed to rise from these defeats and the ensuing months of confusion and, under the new Dual Monarchy of Austria-Hungary, succeeded in remaining relevant in a rapidly-changing world.
--- Introduction to the 3rd edition of Indivisibiliter ac Inseparabiliter: A History of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in the 19th and 20th Centuries by Dr. Howard A. Coppenger, Professor of European History at the University of Minnesota.
Hello, and welcome to my first (Paradox) AAR, “Indivisibiliter ac Inseparabiliter: The Emergence of Austria-Hungary” (any similarities between its title and that of that fictional book introduced above are purely coincidental, I assure you). The goal of this is to take you, the reader, through the alt-history of Austria-Hungary from 1862 through to whenever I get bored and stop (though hopefully 1936). I am playing in the 3.04 beta patch, using the appropriate version of the POPs of Darkness mod. I have, however, made some notable alterations to that mod, changing some events and decisions and adding several new ones (mostly focused on imperialism), incorporating aspects of a few PDM mod-mods, slightly adjusting the map, and patching several of the bugs present in the 1861 start.
However, this is not a generic Austro-Hungarian AAR. As a human player, it’s completely possible to keep control of northern Italy and to whack Prussia to ensure your control over the Germanic states, but I felt that that wouldn’t make for a very interesting AAR. So instead I opted to play as badly as possible until a situation could arise for me to lose control over Venetia and the South German states . This was done both to give me a poorer starting position and because I like clean borders (not only does Germany need to form, Italy looks wrong without Venice.) I won’t be too willing to give up any more land, though.
Before we begin, a few additional notes:
First, I’d like to thank Jape, whose “A House United: America in the Civil War and Beyond” I confess to being heavily inspired by, and nerdymidgetkid, whose “From the Ashes: A History of Germany Following the Great Defeat of 1852” demonstrated that a ‘post-loss’ AAR could actually work. Though I had previously considered writing an AAR along these lines last September (and so can’t be entirely accused of ripping off the idea…), having it demonstrated that an AAR starting from a ‘failed’ position can translate to a fun read pretty much gave me the confirmation I needed to finally launch this thing.
Administratively, I should mention that the vast majority of these updates will follow a history-book style (on the off-chance that wasn’t obvious), though I may detour into narrative style if I feel like it. Semi-regularly, I will include an “intermission” examining the world in its entirety, or at least those areas where interesting things have happened. I make no promises as to a standardized update schedule for this AAR, but I’ll do my best to keep it moving along.
I furthermore want to mention that I will be largely roleplaying in this AAR, and thus sub-optimal gameplay will regularly occur. In addition to keeping things plausible in-universe in this manner, I also have set myself a few house rules that I will obey while playing: I will not annex any non-colonial land I don’t have cores on (the exception being Bosnia, which may be annexed by decision); the defeats against Prussia and Italy are final and will not be ’undone’ (Austria has lost the south German states and Venice for good); and any further wars will be fought to the bitter end – no more of this ‘concede the wargoal and get out of the war’ stuff!
 I was actually planning on waiting until the “Schleswig-Holstein Question” event fired and then, following a relatively historical route, declaring on Prussia and getting creamed. However, Prussia declared on me in May of 1862, and figuring it was as good a time as any to start losing I tag-switched to Italy and had them declare war, too. I may as well note here that I have no qualms about utilizing the console from time to time, though with very limited exceptions it will be solely for narrative purposes.
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