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angryclown

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Welcome to my 2nd AAR.

While deciding what country to play, I discovered this thread about the Obodrittes. Congratulations to Semi-Lobster, Veldmaarschalk and to all the people who contributed to this fascinating dicsussion. After reading this thread, it was clear who I should play. From pagan warlord to Christian convert to fallen power, the story of the Nakonid family was too good to pass up.

Once a line of Grand Princes of a mighty pagan principlaity, the Nakonid dynasty finds itself in 1066 expelled from their own domain after a reactionary uprising against the new Christian faith and their territory reduced to the lands around Lübeck. Wedged between the Kingdom of Denmark and the Holy Roman Empire, with the threat of their old nation wishing to extinguish the Christian threat, this should be interesting.

At this early stage, I have no ultimate goals except for survival. I think the goals will present themselves during the course of the game.

So here goes: County of Lübeck, v1.05 + SMACK v3.

First post coming soon. Hope you enjoy it!
 

Lurken

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This will be interresting AAR. I hope you will complete it.
 

angryclown

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Prologue

[SIZE=+2]Against the Tide: Prologue
The Obodrittes
[/SIZE]​

In the 6th century, the Slavic people known as the Obodrittes settled on the Baltic coast in a region that would, over the next five centuries, span parts of modern-day Holstein and Mecklenburg in northern Germany. For centuries, the militaristic Obodrittes succeeded in holding back the armies and Christian ideologies of the neighbouring Danish and Germanic kingdoms.

1066_map2.jpg

[SIZE=-1]The Christian and Pagan lands of the Baltic coast, mid-11th Century[/SIZE]​


Early 11th Century: A Question of Faith
At the beginning of the 11th century, Udo Nakonid came to power as Prince of the Obodrittes. Unlike his pagan predecessors, Udo had embraced the Christian faith and even sent his son Gottschalk to St. Michael’s monastery in Lenzen.

Gottschalk’s studies were cut short in 1020 when Udo was slain by a Christian Saxon, apparently as punishment for an act of extreme cruelty. Furious with this news, Gottschalk abandoned the monastery and the new religion, gathered all the men that he could and crossed the Elbe into Saxony in retaliation for his father’s death. Thousands of Saxons were slaughtered by Gottschalk before he was defeated by Bernard Duke of Saxony and imprisoned. In 1029 Gottschalk was released and he exiled himself to Denmark while the Obodrittes were ruled by Ratibor, a puppet of Duke Bernard.

1029 - 1043: An Exile in King Canute's Court
While Gottschalk was in exile, he entered the services of King Canute of Denmark and distinguished himself in the Danish wars in Norway and Scotland. During his exile, he regained his faith in Christianity and had two sons, Budivoj and Henrik.

1043 - 1066: Gottschalk's Mission
In 1043, Ratibor’s line ended. Gottschalk returned home with his sons and regained his princely title. For the next two decades, Gottschalk strove to reunite the Slavic tribes and convert them to Christianity. By the mid-11th century, Gottschalk’s power extended from the Elbe river to the Oder, and he founded the town of Lübeck as his capital. With the support of the Archbishop of Hamburg, Gottschalk founded monasteries and introduced missionaries, sometimes accompanying them personally through his domain.

1066: The Pagan Uprising
It appeared that Gottschalk would succeed in converting the pagans. But it was not to be. An uprising was instigated by locals who did not want to abandon their old ways and on 3 June 1066, Gottschalk was killed in Lenzen, the same town where he had been a student half a century ago before his father’s death. The pagan uprising led to rebel leader Krutoj taking rule of the principality and putting an end to the Christian movement.

1066_krut.jpg

[SIZE=-1]The rebel leader[/SIZE]​

Krutoj wasted no time in allying with the neighbouring pagan High Chief of Pommerania. It seemed like only a matter of time before all the work of Gottschalk would be undone.

Lübeck: A Capital Without a People
Gottschalk’s son and heir Budivoj only managed to hang on to the lands around Lübeck, while Budivoj's younger brother Henrik fled back to Denmark. Hopelessly outnumbered after the rebellion, the small county of Lübeck was in trouble. But if it could survive and hold back the revolt, Lübeck could prosper. The land itself was fertile and it had the potential to become a great centre of power and commerce on the Baltic. It was with good reason that Gottschalk established his capital there. The future of Lübeck and that of Christianity on the Baltic coast now rested in the hands of one man: Budivoj the new Count of Lübeck.

1066_map.jpg

[SIZE=-1]The Baltic coast after the death of Gottschalk. Lübeck (grey), Rebel Obodrittes (tan), Pommerania (dark blue)[/SIZE]

1066_me.jpg

[SIZE=-1]Gottschalk's son and heir, now here's where the story really starts[/SIZE]​

 

unmerged(7269)

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Interesting start! If you get through this first bit, you should have lots of potential for expansion.
 

Veldmaarschalk

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I have to follow this one off course :)
 

coz1

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Very interesting so far. I have not read one for the northern pagans yet, so this should be both educational and enjoyable. I'll be following. Good luck.
 

stnylan

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The one and only time I played Lubeck I got stomped on from an early stage - it will be interesting to see what you do.
 

unmerged(29007)

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Lübeck certainly presents its own challenges early in the game with considerably stronger and hostile neighbouring pagans. I had somewhat of a fixation to make it as Lübeck a while ago and managed to do it after a few trial runs by pledging loyalty to the king of Denmark (and later bashing his feeble dynasty :)).
This story will be most interesting and hopefully you'll manage it without unnecessary kneeling ;)

I'll definitely be following this one.
 

angryclown

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Lurken, siekel, MacRaith, Veldmaarschalk, coz1 - Thanks for the support. Good to have you on board!

stnylan - In my first few attempts as Lübeck, I also got absolutely thumped by the pagans very early in the game. The early years do require a certain amount of luck to survive, but I will do my best to change the circumstances to my favour

isovasara - There will be no unnecessary kow-towing to other powers. Every diplomatic action should have its own hidden motives ;)
 

angryclown

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Chapter 1

[SIZE=+2]Against the Tide: Chapter 1
The Long Road Back
[/SIZE]​

1066 – 1068: Regrouping and rebuilding
As much as he wanted to charge back into Mecklemburg, Budivoj had to admit that open conflict against the rebel Krutoj would be suicide. Rebel forces outnumbered those loyal to Budivoj by three to one, and Krutoj was a fearsome warrior whose abilities on the battlefield far outstripped those of Budivoj. In combination with Krutoj’s ally in Pommerania, open conflict simply didn’t bear thinking about. Budivoj would avenge his father, but this would require planning and careful preparation.

Budivoj immediately set to work on safeguarding what little power he had left, and that meant keeping his people happy and safe. He ordered his armourers to develop better armour for his soldiers. He also insisted that the conversion of the people of Lübeck to Christianity be allowed to continue, but he encouraged the missionaries to instil of a sense of popular duty to the One True God that should make the people more accepting of the new ways.

Budivoj then returned to his birthplace-in-exile Denmark for an audience with King Svend II to ask for the hand of his youngest daughter Gro Svendsdottir in marriage. In the spring of 1067, they were married in Lübeck in the first Christian wedding ceremony held in the town and by the end of 1067, Budivoj became a father.

1067_birth.jpg

The year 1068 was a good year to the court in Lübeck. Wife Gro was establishing herself as a wise chancellor and a fine mother, with son Havel in good health and another child on the way. The local village of Segeberg had responded to the Christian conversions so well that Budivoj rewarded the village noble with the honour of being marshal of the fledgling Lübeck army.

Budivoj also wanted to set a personal example in following Christian ways by staying true to his wife and not fraternising with court wenches. In late 1068, Budivoj discovered an old Slavic document that stated that he had a rightful claim on the Bohemian territory of Ostrava. While Ostrava was too far away to be immediately important, Budivoj felt assured that he was destined to bring the rebels and the Slavic people under his rule

1069: Trial by Fire
On June 2 1069, the rebel chieftains had gathered in Lenzen in preparation for celebrations to mark the third anniversary of their uprising and the death of Gottschalk at the hands of Krutoj. As was customary, there was a huge feast on this night, which would be followed by an even bigger feast on the following night. On this night, the rebel chieftain Krutoj was late and so the festivities started without him. After the feast, the great bonfire was lit and there was much drinking and raucous behaviour. Until they heard a terrible scream from within the bonfire. The pagans tore down the bonfire as quickly as they could, to make a terrible discovery. Krutoj had been tied, gagged and buried under the pile of bonfire wood. As the fire grew, his gag was burnt away, allowing him to scream. But by the time he had been unearthed it was too late.

Krutoj was dead, and with him the alliance with Pommerania. The Pommeranian chiefs immediately made to depart for home. As the left Lenzen, High Chief Swietopelk of the Pommeranians spotted a figure fleeing the scene. He dispatched his fastest rider to track him down. Krutoj’s assassin was caught.

1069_event1.jpg

But Swietopelk did not kill the assassin. Instead, he gave him an important message to take back to Lübeck.

1069_event2.jpg

Budivoj could not have been happier with these developments. He was not even worried that his involvement in Krutoj’s death was known. In fact, he was proud of it. The strength of Krutoj and his alliance with the Pommeranians was constantly hanging over the people of Lübeck since the uprising. And with one stroke, Budivoj had succeeded in drastically reducing the rebels’ power. More importantly, he had avenged his father.

He held no hopes for the Pommeraninans actually coming to his aid in the event of a conflict, but so long as that aid was not available to the rebels, Budivoj was satisfied. The shift in Pommerania’s loyalties combined with the internal chaos within the rebel camp ensured that Lübeck was a little safer. But only a little.

One month after the death of Krutoj, there was more reason to celebrate in Lübeck. Budivoj’s first daughter Gertruda was born. One year later another daughter by the name of Kamila followed. The peasants of Lübeck were clearly warming to Budivoj, with more and more pledges of loyalty to their liege.

1070 – 1074: The Way Forward
On December 5, 1070, the labours of Gottscalk were finally starting to show. The people of Lübeck had finally accepted the Christian faith!

1070_event.jpg

[SIZE=-1]The first step[/SIZE]​

With the people of Lübeck casting aside their pagan ways, it was time to improve their security and well-being. The rebel threat was still present and, even though the new rebel leader was a mere shadow of a warrior compared to Krutoj, they could still easily sweep Lübeck aside by their numbers. Budivoj spent the next few years organising a new forestry system and improving Lübeck’s military facilities. He also sent his people to neighbouring regions to collect new ideas in construction, archery and farming

While son Havel entered military training at the age of 5, all was not well in the Nakonid family. Daughter Gertrude died of poor health in 1071. After overcoming this tragedy, Budivoj and Gro were blessed with a daughter Markéta in 1073 and another son Milosz in early 1075.

Chief Swietopelk of Pommerania died of pneumonia in 1074. His successor soon travelled to Lübeck seeking a new alliance, which Budivoj readily accepted. Still not a reliable ally, but better than an enemy.
 

stnylan

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A little bit of a luck, but a very fruitful assassination. Appears the Pommeranians are worried their neighbours might get too uppity.
 

unmerged(29007)

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Nicely done, didn't really think an assassination could yield such a power shift in the area. The immediate danger is certainly eased but you still have a few pagan provinces to conquer. Good work, keep it up :)
 

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lubeck always goes under pretty quick in my games, so good luck

thinking about becoming anyone's vassal? or gonna go conquer some pagan's poor ass
 

coz1

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The conversion is so far successful. The people accept the faith as your neighbors grow to fear you. Potential for stong growth, though still a great deal of threat to worry about. Keep gaining those claims and allies.
 

unmerged(20462)

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I like it very much so far. For instance, the way how you made a bridge between the discovered assassination and the new alliance...

You are still in a difficult position... It's clear that as a one province county you will have always less manpower than the rebels will. Maybe if some neigbouring German county rebelled. That would be an easy target for you.
 

Jestor

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Interesting start thus far.

I've noticed people have a tendency to raid Denmark and Sweden for princess wives often as an opening game move. :D
 

angryclown

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Thanks for the comments, everyone.

stnylan, isovasara - I was surprised at how quickly the Pommeranians offered an alliance. They asked me before I even had the chance to ask them :) But now both the rebel leader and the Pommeranian chief are hopeless, so if i go to war now you can be pretty sure that Pommerania would not help and i would lose simply by numbers. That will have to wait.

cuchulain - perhaps (but only if necessary, or convenient), and hell yes!

coz1, siekel - You are right, having the right claims, allies, neighbours (or any combination of the three) can be incredibly effective. When used together, the results can be quite devestating...

Jestor - Even though it might be common to go wife-hunting in Scandinavia at the beginning, I thought that this time (given the known history of this family) it would be fitting to have a Danish bride

phargle - :) no bastard children yet, but anything is still possible

the_hdk - thanks. Unfortunately, this AAR cannot move at the same speed as many of the other fine AARs out there, but it should run for some time