Perfecting the Low Countries: Limburg, Groningen and Jülich

Perfecting the Low Countries: Limburg, Groningen and Jülich

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Martynios

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Hello all,

In last week's dev diary many map changes were announced, including to the Low Countries, overjoying me and many others. This greatly improved the historical accuracy of the region, but I believe this can be further improved without creating provinces that are too small.

tufBa5K.png


Take a moment to enjoy this colourful, home-edited map. While this map predates the EU4 start by ~44 years, the only differences are the existence of some small counties/lordships that were later absorbed into bigger ones, making the map reasonably suitable as a reference for this thread.
The changes announced last week amount to the following:
  • Holland has been divided into a northern and a southern province.
  • The province of Oversticht was added, representing the holdings of Utrecht on the other side of Gelre.
  • Friesland has been split in two, giving rise to the province of Groningen
  • The province of Limburg has been removed in favour of a province called Upper Guelders (the southern exclave of Geldern on the map), with slightly different borders.
The first two changes are great, and nothing can be done to improve on them.

Adding Groningen improved the historical accuracy of Frisia, which is equally nice. However, a flaw consists of Groningen being controlled by the Friesland tag. This is historically inaccurate, for the following reasons:
  • Groningen operated as an independent city-state. This is elaborated upon in this thread.
  • According to Wikipedia, Friesland in this era was "ruled" by a mayor, chosen from one of thirty municipalities. None of these municipalities were located in the province of Groningen, implying they were not the same nation.
  • The Groningen province also includes Drenthe, which was never under Frisian rule.
I propose that Groningen becomes an independent nation.

The replacement of Limburg too is a good change in my opinion, as Upper Guelders has a bigger area than Limburg and does justice to Gelre, which was a major regional power during the first quarter of the game's time period and has an interesting history, including for example the Guelders Wars, in which it managed to hold its own against Charles of Habsburg for a remarkably long time.

However, while I prefer the current over the previous situation, I think it is still suboptimal. Limburg not existing has a negative effect on the historical accuracy of the region, as it was an important duchy, containing the important fortress city of Maastricht, in which many battles were fought. Additionally, the lack of Limburg means that Liège is not encircled by the historical Seventeen Provinces, which has implications for gameplay.

A graphical reason for adding Limburg is that the province of Liège currently has a bit of an awkward and angular shape. By carving a Limburg province out of the eastern part of Liège, this province is reduced to a size more similar to other provinces in the area. The newly created Limburg province would be big enough for the game. It would be owned by Brabant.

LzqrH3Y.jpg


The top picture shows how the game map would look with the addition of a historically accurate Limburg province. The bottom pictures are maps of the same region in the mid-15th century, for comparing purposes. It can be seen that my proposed Limburg is bigger than Utrecht and about equal in size to Loon and Calais, three other provinces displayed in the picture.

The last opportunity I see for improving the current depiction of this region of the map concerns the non-existence of the duchy of Jülich. As has been explained before in different threads, Jülich was a significant regional power, at its height enjoying personal unions with Cleves, Berg and Gelre.

I think Jülich should be added as an independent province, in one of the following ways:
  • Replacing Aachen by Jülich. An advantage of this solution is that it wouldn't affect province clickability. As shown in the map on the bottom-left below, the free imperial city of Aachen only owned a fraction of the province, the vast majority consisting of Jülich. Aachen was politically far less relevant than Jülich. There are multiple examples were Paradox already decided not to place a free city on the map in favour of a bigger and more significant neighbour, such as Cologne, which is owned by the archbishopric rather than the city. A downside is the fact that the removal of a free city could be bad for the HRE. However, the addition of Groningen brings with it an extra potential free city.
  • Breaking Aachen in two. As shown below, splitting a Jülich province off Aachen is viable, although bringing the size of Aachen down close to that of Utrecht and Frankfurt is suboptimal. Optionally, the provinces could be expanded slightly into Trier, to make them more sizeable.
The resulting nation of Jülich would also own the province of Berg, unless I missed something in my research.

KjD3VrZ.jpg


The top picture shows again the game map, this time with both the addition of Limburg and the split of Aachen into Aachen and Jülich. The alternative, replacing Aachen with Jülich would not affect any borders, hence why I didn't make a map for that.

I think that if these changes are implemented, the map of the Low Countries will be nearly completely accurate and more or less perfect for game purposes, as the only missing provinces (e.g. Tournaisis) would be undoubtedly too small to implement. It would greatly improve my experience and probably that of others who value historical accuracy of the map.
Thanks for reading.

TL;DR: To even further improve the historical accuracy of the Low Countries region within the limits of the game map I propose the creation of a Groningen tag and the addition of a Limburg province, which will not be too small. Additionally, a Jülich province could be added, which is however a wee bit more arguable in terms of size.

EDIT: For an improved version of my suggestion, see the first threadmark.
 
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Palando

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Hello all,
The last opportunity I see for improving the current depiction of this region of the map concerns the non-existence of the duchy of Jülich. As has been explained before in different threads, Jülich was a significant regional power, at its height enjoying personal unions with Cleves, Berg and Gelre.

I think Jülich should be added as an independent province, in one of the following ways:
  • Replacing Aachen by Jülich. This would be an ideal solution, because it wouldn't affect province clickability. As shown in the map on the bottom-left below, the free imperial city of Aachen only owned a fraction of the province, the vast majority consisting of Jülich. Aachen was politically far less relevant than Jülich. There are multiple examples were Paradox already decided not to place a free city on the map in favour of a bigger and more significant neighbour, such as Cologne, which is owned by the archbishopric rather than the city. A downside is the fact that the removal of a free city could be bad for the HRE. However, the addition of Groningen brings with it an extra potential free city.
  • Breaking Aachen in two. As shown below, splitting a Jülich province off Aachen is viable, although bringing the size of Aachen down close to that of Utrecht and Frankfurt is suboptimal. Optionally, the provinces could be expanded slightly into Trier, to make them more sizeable.
The resulting nation of Jülich would also own the province of Berg, unless I missed something in my research.

KjD3VrZ.jpg
If Jülich was ever added, the province Berg should get split into Mark (to Cleves) and Berg(to Jülich). The new provinces have set a pretty low standard on the size of provinces in that region, so that I don't see any reasonable argument to discard those.
 

bebrst

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I like your suggestions. I am always in favor for more additions, as it makes playing those regions more interesting and dynamic - of course if the implementation is based on good sources, which here clearly is the case :)

One thing I would argue for is keeping Aachen. Even without the greatest influence outside its city walls - what is within has a huge symbolic value to the HRE. As the coronation site for all but three "Roman-German" kings until 1562 (31 all together; not to mix up with the coronation in Rome) and as the favorite imperial residence of Charlemagne it bears a lot of symbolic value (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coronation_of_the_Holy_Roman_Emperor#Locations_for_the_ceremony). Hence, I would argue for keeping it as own tag. As the "Aachener Reich" (https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aachener_Reich) never spanned much further than outside the city walls, it would make sense though to give some of its current lands to a new tag.

For Aachen I would even suggest some events based around the coronation ceremonies in Aachen (prestige or legitimacy boost, as well as a boost in income), and then a modifier to stop it in 1562 (https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Krönung_der_römisch-deutschen_Könige_und_Kaiser#Frühe_Neuzeit).


-Sorry for some of the links being in German. Couldn't find the same info in English.
 

Martynios

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If Jülich was ever added, the province Berg should get split into Mark (to Cleves) and Berg(to Jülich). The new provinces have set a pretty low standard on the size of provinces in that region, so that I don't see any reasonable argument to discard those.
I agree that could be a good idea for the future, but let’s not ask too much.
 

Martynios

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I like your suggestions. I am always in favor for more additions, as it makes playing those regions more interesting and dynamic - of course if the implementation is based on good sources, which here clearly is the case :)
Thanks :)

One thing I would argue for is keeping Aachen. Even without the greatest influence outside its city walls - what is within has a huge symbolic value to the HRE. As the coronation site for all but three "Roman-German" kings until 1562 (31 all together; not to mix up with the coronation in Rome) and as the favorite imperial residence of Charlemagne it bears a lot of symbolic value (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coronation_of_the_Holy_Roman_Emperor#Locations_for_the_ceremony). Hence, I would argue for keeping it as own tag. As the "Aachener Reich" (https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aachener_Reich) never spanned much further than outside the city walls, it would make sense though to give some of its current lands to a new tag.

For Aachen I would even suggest some events based around the coronation ceremonies in Aachen (prestige or legitimacy boost, as well as a boost in income), and then a modifier to stop it in 1562 (https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Krönung_der_römisch-deutschen_Könige_und_Kaiser#Frühe_Neuzeit).


-Sorry for some of the links being in German. Couldn't find the same info in English.
I guess symbolic significance is a reason to keep Aachen, although I’d still much prefer Jülich if only one can be in the game. I will try further improving my map so that both can exist more easily.
 

KD.

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Good points. In addition, I continue to argue in favour of a small change to Gelre's border, to look more like the maps you posted here (especially clear in the first one!).

Currently in-game Gelre still looks very misshaped. And important: the border Gelre had (and should have in-game) with Holland and the fact that Utrecht and Brabant did not border each other, can actually influence gameplay.

For an example of how this can be done quite elegantly in the game (without sacrificing any clickability), see the post of Tinholt you referenced as well.
 
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Martynios

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Good points. In addition, I continue to argue in favour of a small change to Gelre's border, to look more like the maps you posted here (especially clear in the first one!).

Currently in-game Gelre still looks very misshaped. And important: the border Gelre had (and should have in-game) with Holland and the fact that Utrecht and Brabant did not border each other, can actually influence gameplay.

For an example of how this can be done quite elegantly in the game (without sacrificing any clickability), see the post of Tinholt you referenced as well.
I agree, however this issue is pretty minor compared to the others. Would it perhaps be a good idea to tag a dev and ask how much we can expect?
 

orania

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I really like your suggestions.

I am not a big fan of the nothern part of Holland being called Amsterdam and the southern Den Haag. I would opt for "Noorderkwartier" (with Amsterdam as capital) and "Zuiderkwartier" (with either Delft or Den Haag as capital).

link: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noorderkwartier

Howcome Zeeland, Geldre and Friesland are named after the Province but Amsterdam would be named after a city? The same goes for Groningen. I would change that name into Stad en Lande.

Link (only in Dutch): https://nl.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stad_en_Lande
 

KD.

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I agree, however this issue is pretty minor compared to the others. Would it perhaps be a good idea to tag a dev and ask how much we can expect?

Yes indeed, it is pretty minor. But exactly for that reason I hoped that it would be a really simple, quick and uncontroversial thing to do. No need for additional provinces or tags to fix this tiny issue. And in return it will make the map look much better. :) OK, let's tag @Trin Tragula to see if he could shed a light on this.
 

Martynios

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I really like your suggestions.

I am not a big fan of the nothern part of Holland being called Amsterdam and the southern Den Haag. I would opt for "Noorderkwartier" (with Amsterdam as capital) and "Zuiderkwartier" (with either Delft or Den Haag as capital).

link: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Noorderkwartier
I agree that naming these two provinces after a city is an inconsistency. But the Noorderkwartier didn't actually include Amsterdam, so I don't think "Noorderkwartier" and "Zuiderkwartier" would be accurate. I propose naming the provinces "Amstelland" and "Maasland", which is what they were called under the Napoleonic kingdom of Holland.
800px-Map_Kingdom_of_Holland_1807-nl.svg.png

The same goes for Groningen. I would change that name into Stad en Lande.

Link (only in Dutch): https://nl.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stad_en_Lande
I disagree. Not only is "Stad en Lande" a bit of a silly name, considering it means nothing more than "city and surroundings", Groningen is actually a proper region name too, similarly to Utrecht. The Lordship of Groningen was one of the Habsburg Seventeen Provinces, and it included more than just the city.
 
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Dutchman251

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I agree, especially about Drenthe.
I agree that naming these two provinces after a city is an inconsistency. But the Noorderkwartier didn't actually include Amsterdam, so I don't think "Noorderkwartier" and "Zuiderkwartier" would be accurate. I propose naming the provinces "Amstelland" and "Maasland", which is what they were called under the Napoleonic kingdom of Holland.
Using Napoleontic names is really mistaken. Those just lasted for 20 years, and were then removed as soon as possible. Rather, I would call the northern part of Holland "West-Friesland", which is a more specific indication of the region. For the south I couldn't invent so soon an name. I don't believe that it really was that distinct in that time - maybe long ago, but that is way before the era of EU4. I think the split is a bad idea overall, though.
 

Martynios

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I agree, especially about Drenthe.

Using Napoleontic names is really mistaken. Those just lasted for 20 years, and were then removed as soon as possible. Rather, I would call the northern part of Holland "West-Friesland", which is a more specific indication of the region. For the south I couldn't invent so soon an name. I don't believe that it really was that distinct in that time - maybe long ago, but that is way before the era of EU4. I think the split is a bad idea overall, though.
Again, the region of West-Friesland did not include Amsterdam. Normally I would agree with you on Napoleonic names, but in this case I don't think there's a better alternative. And the province of Antwerpen is based on the post-Napoleonic Kingdom of the Netherlands, so there's a precedent.
 

KD.

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I agree with @Martynios on the naming of Groningen. Even though it was referred to as Stad en Lande at the time, that is a strangely generic name. So Groningen is perfectly fine.

As for the two new Holland provinces: I personally don't have a problem with their new names, Amsterdam and Den Haag.

Amsterdam became one of the biggest cities in Europe during the seventeenth century: by 1700, it was the fourth largest city of Europe, after Constantinople, London and Paris. All other cities that were in the top 10 that year, also have their own provinces in EU IV by the way: Naples, Lisbon, Rome, Venice, Palermo and Moscow. So it seems only natural that 'Amsterdam' is visibly included in the game as well. This is not just a 'Dutch' question: in the current version of EU IV, Paris is called Paris and not Ile-de-France, Rome isn't called Lazio, etc.

As for Den Haag: that is a bit more complicated, because it wasn't the biggest city. Since there were many cities of similar size or larger, that could be a reason to just call it 'Holland'. The Brabant province in the Southern Netherlands doesn't include all of Brabant either, after all, so that doesn't seem to be a problem. On the other hand, despite its relatively small size, the political importance of Den Haag could justify the naming as well. So as far as I'm concerned, this is purely a matter of personal preference. The developers' choice is as good as any other.

(by the way, I notice the criticism only concentrates on the new provinces, but 'Breda' is maybe actually the funniest name. I know there was a Lordship or Barony of Breda, but that encompassed only a tiny part of this province.)
 

Martynios

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I agree with @Martynios on the naming of Groningen. Even though it was referred to as Stad en Lande at the time, that is a strangely generic name. So Groningen is perfectly fine.

As for the two new Holland provinces: I personally don't have a problem with their new names, Amsterdam and Den Haag.

Amsterdam became one of the biggest cities in Europe during the seventeenth century: by 1700, it was the fourth largest city of Europe, after Constantinople, London and Paris. All other cities that were in the top 10 that year, also have their own provinces in EU IV by the way: Naples, Lisbon, Rome, Venice, Palermo and Moscow. So it seems only natural that 'Amsterdam' is visibly included in the game as well. This is not just a 'Dutch' question: in the current version of EU IV, Paris is called Paris and not Ile-de-France, Rome isn't called Lazio, etc.

As for Den Haag: that is a bit more complicated, because it wasn't the biggest city. Since there were many cities of similar size or larger, that could be a reason to just call it 'Holland'. The Brabant province in the Southern Netherlands doesn't include all of Brabant either, after all, so that doesn't seem to be a problem. On the other hand, despite its relatively small size, the political importance of Den Haag could justify the naming as well. So as far as I'm concerned, this is purely a matter of personal preference. The developers' choice is as good as any other.

(by the way, I notice the criticism only concentrates on the new provinces, but 'Breda' is maybe actually the funniest name. I know there was a Lordship or Barony of Breda, but that encompassed only a tiny part of this province.)
Arguments accepted. :)
 
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Update I

Martynios

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Anyway, back to topic!

2T6ruuQ.jpg


I have edited Limburg, Aachen and Jülich so that they are now prettier and all bigger than Utrecht & Frankfurt. I've also connected Gelre and Den Haag through Breda, giving them their historical (and in the case of Gelre, better-looking) shapes.
 
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Martynios

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Does anyone actually disagree with these suggestions?
 

Metz

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What about splitting Luxembourg to create the Arlon province?
 

Palando

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What about splitting Luxembourg to create the Arlon province?
This would be a great way to show the cultural split in the Luxembourg province (Walloon <-> Rhenish).

And actually, those were administrative divisions of Luxembourg (though using Arlon + Luxembourg as names would be more suitable than Germany and Walloon quarter):

From 1690:
1690.duchy.jpg


From 1746:
1746.duchy.jpg
 

AirikrStrife

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Essentially everything in this thread has already been discussed before but defnitly worth mentioning again. I think they skip Jülich because it's outside of the low countries, hopefully they add them in a HRE patch. When/if they add Jülich they need to split Berg into a Berg and a Mark province so both cleves and jülich get's two provinces each.

I would also love to see a new province of Limburg aswell as a split Luxemburg.
 

Martynios

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What about splitting Luxembourg to create the Arlon province?

This would be a great way to show the cultural split in the Luxembourg province (Walloon <-> Rhenish).

And actually, those were administrative divisions of Luxembourg (though using Arlon + Luxembourg as names would be more suitable than Germany and Walloon quarter):

From 1690:
1690.duchy.jpg


From 1746:
1746.duchy.jpg
Due to the lack of political divisions within the province of Luxembourg, I feel little for adding it to my suggestions. Feel free to make your own thread, though.