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-- Habsburg Europe --

The year is 1773. The Habsburg shepherds of the Holy Roman Empire withstood pressures from within and without, using diplomacy to gradually centralize authority in Germany and push back invaders that would otherwise overwhelm the collection of fiefdoms.

As a reward for defending the cause of counter-reformation, pushing the Ottomans back across the Bosporus, and establishing the Catholic Empire, the Pope, with the backing of the electors, blessed the House of Austria with the exclusive right to the thrones of Europe and inheritance of the empire.

It was only a matter of time before the withering cadet branches of the Habsburg dynasty, for so long intermarried for political gain, would result in the personal union of the continent, but with each additional throne came a weighting of authority in favor of the estates whom struck a deal with the emperor when his only heir was one Maria Theresa.

In exchange for accepting the pragmatic sanction, the emperor agreed to form a modern parliament, accept the reformed faith of Dutch Republic, and vow to support a crusade for the Holy Land as well as the commercial endeavors of Asian trading companies.

This breaking of Salic Law, as well as the Pope's sanctioning of the union of the West and the Tsardom of Russia lead to Tuscany, a former member of the empire and fierce rival, to set up an anti-pope in Rome and build a coalition to support them in dethroning the Habsburgs and abolishing the parliament that increasingly proposes liberal reforms, the kind that have recently lead to the independence of former English colonies and the economic empowerment of the burghers.

Only time will tell if the various realms will one day find a Habsburg Europe to be a worthy shepherd, a figurehead like the emperor of Japan, or a withering branch of history from which the seeds of secular liberty will look to the example of the rising stars in the Americas.


Political Map - Europe:

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Dynasty Map - Europe:

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Player World Map:

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Political World Map:

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Religious World Map:

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Got tired of blobbing, so I went for a modest, colonialist Utrecht->Netherlands run. It's still fairly early and it's by no means an empire, but I just had to share this.
As a rather weak nation earlier on, I had allied Austria and France - who, for some reason, were best buds instead of rivals. Well, whatever, works for me.
Then France went on to beat up the Iberians, taking quite a bit of their land, no less. Nice, murder those colonials!
Then France got Hungary in a PU. Uh, okay?
Then France...
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NEIN NEIN NEIN NEIN NEIN NEIN NEIN NEIN

To add insult to injury, my heir died with no one to replace him, and upon ruler death - you guessed it - France would've gotten me into a PU. Yeah, that's where I drew the line. Forceclosed the game prior to the ironman save. I feel slightly dirty for doing it, but not nearly as dirty as I would be if I was playing France in this situation.


Oh, also, a couple of obligatory RNW province naming screenies.
This one's self-explanatory :)
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Now, this... If there is one province I won't give to the filthy AI Portuguese map painter, it's Sword Coast, and no d20 roll is going to change my mind. There will be war.
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Is it just me or does France appear to be invading Iberia a lot in recent patches?
I think it all starts when it vassalizes Navarra. Then, well, in for an inch, in for a mile.
 
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Inherited my initial PU's in 1498, directly inherited Naples in 1521, gained a PU over Hungary in 1553 and inherited them (at a 6% or some such) in 1612. Current vassals is Gerle (peacefully vassalized to gain the last bit of Low Countries), Cornwall (probably going to annex them quite soon as they never got around claiming anything), and Sweden (who have cores on most of scandinavia).

My initial campaign target is Burgundian Conquest (France and Austria is both 3PM by now, merely waiting for a good time to vassalize them), but given that i'm the Emperor (and have been such since 1479) and have 4 reforms done already i'm probably also going to grab 'Kaiser not only in name', and then switch tag to France for 'Ruina Imperii' and whatever else i can find of interesting archivements that should be within my reach. (Guarantor of Peace should be easily doable, as soon as Ottomans drop beneath my ability to have them rivaled,All your trade are belong to us only needs a bigger income to finish etc)
 
This practically the end of my campaign as Austria with the mod Lex Talionis II: it is 1814 and these are "The United States of Greater Austria".



The United States of Greater Austria have these titles too:
  1. Holy Roman Emperor
  2. High King of Scandinavia (Personal Union)
  3. High King of Yugoslavia
  4. King of France (Personal Union)
  5. King of Portugal (ruled by a Viceroy)
  6. King of Bohemia
  7. King of Hungary
  8. King of Croatia
  9. King of Serbia
  10. King of the Americas and of all the Seas
  11. Protector of the Holy See
These despared ensemble of lands are called "The Holy Roman Empire and Territories":



The last thing I'd like to do is to expel definitively the Ottomans from Europe... I hope 7 year will be sufficient!
 
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Switzerlake 1.15:
Screenshot at achievement. Hamburg and Papal State are my vassal/march. Only ever had a port twice, and given back to the Pope (Pisa), and Hamburg (Danzig) immediately after the end of the war.
Slow HRE start. France PU over Austria about 1490, then I got a French alliance, and then France became HRE Emperor about 1540, so no more unlawful nonsense. France, Venice and Hungary all allies with trust over 80
Now the plan is to integrate the vassals, and build up my diplo score, as the highest Switzerland score on the leaderboards is currently only about 16k!

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Finished my first 1.15 game as Swedish Scandinavia:
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Ryssland, Vitryssland, Polska Fristat, Tyskland, Stora Frisien and Rhenlandet are my client states and Great Britain is in an union with me. I decided to stop here because I ended up in a regency that would've lasted till the end of the game and most of my client states had almost 100% liberty desire at this point (that's what you get when you're not conquering tyrant :().

World map:
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A rather boring new world. You can also see a very successful Air and Hindustan (and Austria in the Caucasus).
 
Europe at the tag switch to Germany for my Teutonic knights; Baltic crusader > fine goose-step > early Reich. Also picked up grand duchy, factionalism and city of cites.
what really impressed me this game was ai Austria. I was allied to them for the first couple of hundred years but that was mostly them scaring off Poland or Muscovy from attacking me and using them as a beat stick every 30 years or so. Austria got lucky with an early PU on hungry and a full Burgundian inheritance but after that they managed to beat down france and the ottomans on their own. Austria hasn't expanded for the last hundred years or so since i started beating them down for conquests in the HRE if I hadn't had to fight them i would have been interested to see how big they got. This was the first game for a long time where i havent seen austria just eat opms in the HRE and attrition their own armies to death so i guess the changes that the devs made in 1.15 have paid off.
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That's one damn ugly Europe...
 
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Yeah should have put a border gore warning at the start. My particular favourite is Lithuanian avignon. There was a lot of back and forth throughout this game. saw a bunch of tags that i don't normally see without player intervention was actually quiet interesting to watch.
 
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behold the Revolutionary and not Germanic at all Holy Roman Empire

it was one of my best games so far. revoked in 1569, got bohemia, brandenburg and hungary in PU (hence the Pen is mightier achievement). also got Guarantor of peace, One family to rule them all, Georgia on my mind, Colonial Management. then I went full HRE to get Revolutionary just for the lulz, and I got a decent reserve and All your trade belongs to us as well
 
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Frustrating Sweden game. :) Teutonic Order won out against Poland and made it a pain to make my move on the southern Baltic, and then as i'm about to ally Austria and move into the HRE, this happens. :(

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I stick with it and keep growing slowly due to lousy monarchs, just pumping out Swedish super soldiers, not going to blob much this game.

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My buddy Lithuania decides to pull a reversal on Poland. Plus I fed them chunks of Russia to make them a nice decoy in my wars against France :p

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Australia wasn't Australian enough apparently...

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The final smackdown on France.

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My update on my Commonwealth game. Made a fair few balls ups for achievements purposes and locked myself out of the Sjem achievement....also overfed Lithuania so couldn't integrate them via decision until I gave away 8 of her provinces in a phoney war. But we are where we are.

My overall aim is to have nice borders, as normally for achievments I border gore. Also to have all land as accepted cultures. Tver and that OPM purple chap next to Ryzan are my vassals. France, Hungary and Sweden are allies.

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So I did my first game from start to end, Let me introduce to you the Empire of Byzantium.
First of European map:
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World map:
( the bright blue in east africa, and purple in arabia are my pets)
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Finished in the year of 1767
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This is my third game and by far the most fun one I'll done.
Started out with ally Wallencia, and funny enough Poland accepted my call for allience before Hungary.
However First war with the Ottomans did not go easy. Poland was fighting against the Teutonic Order, when they attacked and did not step in until two years into the ottoman conquest of Constantinople, but i managed to hold them off and claim almost all the byzantine cores in the first war, and pushed them out of europe with two more wars.
Hungary was from 1444--> 1550. The baddest bitch in Europe, forcing me to claim the balkans before the swallowed them. I slowly pushed first the Ottomans, then the marmeluks out of the old Eastern Roman Empire. With control of the Sinai, before the Colonial Powers reached the indian Ocean, I could reach the Aden and slowly build up to dominate the trade of the indian ocean.

After year 1700 i got bored so i decided to see if i could manage to build the suez channel. At year 1708 i calculated that by using half my income I would afford it on 50 years. I could properly have done it earlier, however it was boring just to save up so i expanded into the western part of India, the philipines, some islands in indonesia, Arabian peninsula and ofc. Siberia :D

Scandinavia started out with the independence war, but Super-Denmark ate 2/3rds of Sweden and finland while norway took the other. But then Norway attacked and forced Denmark to realise Sweden, and was for a century the biggest and went colonising canada and Florida. Newly released Sweden eventually formed scandinavia, left Denmark to Bornholm, and a close to exodus Norway.

Western Europe was in general funny.
An unholy alliance of burgundy/Provance/GB /portugal and Spain hold until year 1700 France to a mere shadow of itself. Portugal was this game big coloniser, with the westafrican coast, Caraibien, Australia, and big cuncks of Meso-America.
Between 1600 and 1700 Spain lead a PU with Burgundy and GB, although it formed the biggest empire ever seen it seriously weakened GB and Spain, in a century they fought 3 independence wars, also resulting in a series of independence wars of former British: Mexico, La plata and Colombia & Spanish Brazil. The endless wars made room for a France re-claming french cores and turned into westerneurope biggest military force.

Acualia was released from Venice as an OPM, and came to dominate Italy until i showed up.

Ming was exploded before i got to see it, and quite funny quing formed and came to dominate northern china/ Korea and Japan.

Bharat was close to unite India until close to 1730ish until i showed up with superior forces and claimed the west, causing Bharat to destabilise and explode anyway.

I tried as much as possible to avoid europe.
From 1450-1530 i was allied to Poland but decided to cancel the alliance due to fear of us becoming a mayor power bloc

Hungary ended up getting a PU over Austria, and dominated central europe 1500-1600
I Supported Austrian Independence and they became my sole 1st power ally, and between 1650 and 1750 we formed the triple alliance of France/Austria/Byzantine.

The last 30-40 years or France and I went military states against each other. I was a little a head in tech but had to much caverlery compared to the western powers but won on superior manpower and discipline.
2nd Imperial war from 1806-1811: Austria, Hungary, Acuelia(Italy) Navarra, the german minors Vs. Byzantine/french alliance.

Sorry for long post. but i really enjoyed this game :Dinto two great wars:
1st Imperial war from 1791-1798: Commonwealth/Austria/acuelia(italy) Coalition Vs. Byzantine/French alliance.
it was the funniest war i ever had . the top 4
 
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