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First attempt at Hindughals:

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Campaign was ruined by me deciding to not integrate Transoxiana and me being ruled by absolute imbeciles.

Vassals are Haasa, Iraq, Ardalan, Shirvan, Transoxiana, Junagarh, Baglana and Andhra.
Looks like a good start to me, how is it “ruined”?

What are you trying to do?

Just integrate Transoxiana and keep going.

You’re barely 150 years into the game, plenty of time to still get a decent ruler or two. And with your probable economy, you should be able to get at least one or two +5 advisors which should help.
 
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Looks like a good start to me, how is it “ruined”?

My economy sucks, I haven't even fully finished my third idea group, and the Ottomans are breathing down my neck. My fortline in the west is outdated and all my troops are in India, so I will not be able to hold them in the mountains. Vij also proves to be a tough nut to crack as they are 13% discipline ahead of me.

Just integrate Transoxiana and keep going.

I don't have the 20 years that it would take me to integrate them.
 
I don't have the 20 years that it would take me to integrate them.
Are you going for a particular timed achievement, or something? Because the only relevant one I can think of is "True Heir of Timur" (form Mughals and conquer India by 1550) and, I hate to break it to you, but you've already missed that by 30 years...

Besides, Hinduism is one of the most fun religions in EU4. (If you mod in the ability to take the Buddha deity.) Honestly, I'm surprised I hadn't thought of doing a Hindu Mughal run myself...
 
My economy sucks, I haven't even fully finished my third idea group, and the Ottomans are breathing down my neck. My fortline in the west is outdated and all my troops are in India, so I will not be able to hold them in the mountains. Vij also proves to be a tough nut to crack as they are 13% discipline ahead of me.



I don't have the 20 years that it would take me to integrate them.
All of those issues are solvable.

I don’t see your game displays, so all I can offer is general advice.

Forget your ideas, how are you on institutions and tech? Ideas are nice, but if you only get around to filling them out later no biggie. If you fall behind on tech you’re in trouble, and if you’re behind by several institutions, you’re really in trouble.

The Ottomans don’t have missions for much, if any, of your territory. They’re not going to prioritize attacking you. They also have a huge Russia to contend with along with Europe. They have their own problems, which means if you need it, you have options. Russia may also be an issue for you too, so a three-way standoff might be in the future if you continue.

You only need 3-4 forts to bottle the Ottomans up in Persia for awhile, so you don’t need a big line of forts. And unless you’re preparing for a war, you can mothball them to save money.

Finish consolidating India. The control of trade you’ll get from that will help with your economy, and trade and production income starts exploding around the 1600’s. Vij having 13% discipline over you will make the battles bloody, but they don't have much room left. Drilling may help reduce your losses somewhat, and once you fight a battle or two you can stack wipe their army after they retreat.

Once you have some cash flow, upgrade your advisors to mitigate your ruler’s lack of stats.

You got this.
 
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Fun start to my Irish game so far. Last war put me in a dominant position on the British Isles, so decided to take a quick screenshot to commemorate the occasion.

Started as Tyrone and kept the ideas after Ireland formation for roleplay reasons. I hope to finish the English off in two more wars and complete the achievement. My first war victory was due to a grand alliance of France and Denmark with Sweden and Norway as their subjects. Believe it or not, the English actually annexed Scotland this game so I had to battle the English when they had most of the British isles already conquered. Luckily they moved 20k troops over to France so I was able to let France take care of that stack and that allowed me to win the war and take over Scotland. Since that war England hasn't quite been able to recover and their decline has been steady since then.

This last war I took Wales and North England. It was France and I vs an alliance of England, Portugal, Venice, the Pope, and Urech. I smashed England and let France take care of everything else. And while I made mistakes such as not taking the 10% war reparations for every nation defeated, this game has been a lot of fun and an enjoyable detour to my Victoria 3 struggles. Don't think I'm gonna go back.
 
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Hindughals attempt #2

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Much, much better campaign this time, integrating Transoxiana paid of nicely.

Switched to Hindu later this time, mostly in order to abuse the reduced warscore cost vs other religions against a rather massive Vijayanagar. On the other hand that made me unable to TC Persia as I need to own no muslim provinces in order to the take the Anti-Muslim Edict, but with only 3 missionaries and 9.5% missionary strength this will take a long while. My first war against the Ottomans was sadly a wash since my troops absolutely suck compared to theirs (Ottos have full Quality and I fought them at the weakest point of Indian units), but still I was able to at least take Bengkulu which allowed me to vassalize Indrapura and once I've built a fleet will begin my expansion into Indonesia.

As I was waiting to embrace Global Trade I used my massive excess admin points to simply state all of India, while tactically directing my conversion of Persia to states I could then de-state and add to trade companies in order to not only get extra traders, but also give those provinces some sweet goods produced modifier. All my provinces in the Persia node get +64.5% good produced, whereas my provinces in the Lahore node get +55.7% goods produced. Bengal gets +13.3% from Chittagong alone (Mrauk U is Sunni and thus not yet added to a TC).

This rapidly allowed my to balloon my trade income, from ~40 in the 1590s to ~130 currently. If I had to be able to TC Persia sooner I probably could've spawned Global Trade myself, as Persia is now the strongest trade node in the world.

The only thing that limits me currently is expansion routes. I don't want to go into the Ottomans yet because that will only give me more Sunni provinces. Russia's south likewise is Sunni. Yarkand is Sunni. I just threatened war on Tibet so I can't exactly fight them either. Which leaves going into Indochina.

Also just to compare, this was my position at the exact same time I abandoned my previous run:

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Hindughals attempt #2
...
The only thing that limits me currently is expansion routes. I don't want to go into the Ottomans yet because that will only give me more Sunni provinces. Russia's south likewise is Sunni. Yarkand is Sunni. I just threatened war on Tibet so I can't exactly fight them either. Which leaves going into Indochina.
This reminded me that I have a mod which allows all Hindu nations to unlock the Buddha deity, which makes the game a bit more fun IMO. It's been stable for several game versions now, so I finally uploaded it to the workshop as a result of your posts. If you're not going for achievements, it might be worth a look so you can use the Buddhist monuments, some of which give missionaries and missionary strength.
 
If you're not going for achievements, it might be worth a look so you can use the Buddhist monuments, some of which give missionaries and missionary strength.

I don't own any DLC after Emperor, so no monuments for me. W/ monuments I'd already have an additional diplomat, maxed out CCR, an additional merchant, and massively improved tolerance of everyone.
 
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I don't own any DLC after Emperor, so no monuments for me. W/ monuments I'd already have an additional diplomat, maxed out CCR, an additional merchant, and massively improved tolerance of everyone.
Ah.

I thought maybe you could lean into tolerance instead of converting everything, but I ran the numbers and you can only get +2 tolerance of heathens ("ToHn") without monuments or Buddha: -3 base +1 hindu +2 humanist +1 legitimacy +1 "Brahmin legitimacy to rule" estate privilege = +2 ToHn. (There are a couple of erratic ways to get another +1, but you obviously can't rely on these, and a bare +2 ToHn which relies on 100 legitimacy is not good enough.)

However, if you do take Humanist ideas and choose the Buddha deity (via my mod) for the rest of the game, you can run at +3-4 ToHn (depending on legitimacy), which is perfectly acceptable, and might be a lot less annoying than sloooowly converting all of the non-Hindu provinces. But this means giving up all of the other deities for the rest of the game, and I'm not sure that sacrifice is worthwhile if you're not also gaining the Buddhist monuments.
 
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My 87th EUIV run: Ulm.

While I just had played Berg, a fellow HRE member just recently, I got inspired to do another run in HRE with the release of the Utiopia music pack. I didn't want to play with anything important, like Austria, Aachen-> Holy Roman Empire or Brandenburg-> Prussia -> Germany, because of the potential Minor Power DLC, so I picked a meme country and formed the mighty Empire of Ulm.

This was the first time I started as a Free City. I didn't rush with expansion, I spent my first 30 years with just my starting province by developing it (-20 dev cost) and constructing buildings. While I did forcevassalise Augsburg, I still didn't integrate it until I had taken most of Swabia.

I was trying to secure an alliance with Austria, but to no success, even though Poland agreed to become my ally. Suddenly, Austria lost its Emperorship and Baden, a hostile country, became the Emperor. I had to change all my plans, because I didn't want to get unlawful territory and totally ruin my relations with other HRE members. The only option was to annex Baden itself and hope for someone better. After a while, when an opportunity arose, I annexed them and Hesse got elected. That's great, they immediately agreed to alliance and didn't give me unlawful territory. But Austria losing its Emperorship didn't go without consequences. Poland and France used the opportunity to grab big chunks of HRE territory for themselves. Luckily, I wasn't caught much in the action because France made Hesse cancel all its treaties with me. Poland also broke the alliance because of all the unlawful territory they had. In the meantime, I had managed to become an Electorate myself by vassalising Palatinate and then requesting it from Hesse.

When the Reformation came, I became Protestant and made new alliances with other Electorates, so I could be elected myself in the future. The League War was hard, I wanted to start it immediately, but I had forgotten that I was guaranteeing Hesse, so I had to wait 5 more years. In the meantime, the Ottomans joined the Catholic side of course and we had to fight a long, bloody war for almost 10 years with most of the time us having -60 warscore. But once we kicked out the Ottomans and fully occupied France, Hesse unconditionally surrendered. This way I managed to restore most of the French held HRE territories and I was elected as the Emperor. But it was still long way to the top, It took me almost 200 years to pass all the Reforms (except the last Centralisation one) and get the desired borders.

01. Ulmer Empire.png
02. World map.png
03. Score.png

04. Ulmer Empire.png


My vassals: All HRE states.
My allies: Gascony, the Commonwealth, Greece, Karaman, Mamluks, Tunis.
 
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My 87th EUIV run: Ulm.

While I just had played Berg, a fellow HRE member just recently, I got inspired to do another run in HRE with the release of the Utiopia music pack. I didn't want to play with anything important, like Austria, Aachen-> Holy Roman Empire or Brandenburg-> Prussia -> Germany, because of the potential Minor Power DLC, so I picked a meme country and formed the mighty Empire of Ulm.

This was the first time I started as a Free City. I didn't rush with expansion, I spent my first 30 years with just my starting province by developing it (-20 dev cost) and constructing buildings. While I did forcevassalise Augsburg, I still didn't integrate it until I had taken most of Swabia.

I was trying to secure an alliance with Austria, but to no success, even though Poland agreed to become my ally. Suddenly, Austria lost its Emperorship and Baden, a hostile country, became the Emperor. I had to change all my plans, because I didn't want to get unlawful territory and totally ruin my relations with other HRE members. The only option was to annex Baden itself and hope for someone better. After a while, when an opportunity arose, I annexed them and Hesse got elected. That's great, they immediately agreed to alliance and didn't give me unlawful territory. But Austria losing its Emperorship didn't go without consequences. Poland and France used the opportunity to grab big chunks of HRE territory for themselves. Luckily, I wasn't caught much in the action because France made Hesse cancel all its treaties with me. Poland also broke the alliance because of all the unlawful territory they had. In the meantime, I had managed to become an Electorate myself by vassalising Palatinate and then requesting it from Hesse.

When the Reformation came, I became Protestant and made new alliances with other Electorates, so I could be elected myself in the future. The League War was hard, I wanted to start it immediately, but I had forgotten that I was guaranteeing Hesse, so I had to wait 5 more years. In the meantime, the Ottomans joined the Catholic side of course and we had to fight a long, bloody war for almost 10 years with most of the time us having -60 warscore. But once we kicked out the Ottomans and fully occupied France, Hesse unconditionally surrendered. This way I managed to restore most of the French held HRE territories and I was elected as the Emperor. But it was still long way to the top, It took me almost 200 years to pass all the Reforms (except the last Centralisation one) and get the desired borders.

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My vassals: All HRE states.
My allies: Gascony, the Commonwealth, Greece, Karaman, Mamluks, Tunis.
Ulm is definitely overpowered
 
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My best Castile/Spain run ever. Gained Imperio espanol and At Every Continent along the way.
 
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Just waiting for the Ottos to ruin it, but so far, so good...
 
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Had a lot of good RNG which sets up a very strong start, was a very fun run i've been trying out running with Espionage given it helps with a huge drop in AE and lets you vassalize easily.

Allies: France, Russia, Denmark, Kilwa

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Best HRE run.
 
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My 88th EUIV run: Maravi.

Since I've been lately playing mostly in the Middle East and HRE, I decided to take a break and do a rather relaxing run in Africa instead. While Maravi, sadly, didn't receive any content with the Origins, it's still an interesting country with rich history.

While I'm one of the main players in East Africa, Mutapa and Kilwa are still stronger, especially the latter since it already starts with Feudalism and tech advantage. While I could have attacked Tumbuka and Makua, both were allied to Mutapa and each other. I wanted to wait until Kilwa decides to attack either them, but to no luck. In 1451 I decided to attack Mutua, hoping that Kilwa would declare war, too. It happened, but I still had to fight all their armies, barely lifting off sieges from myself and my vassal. In the end I managed to annex both Mutua and Tumbuka, while Kilwa took like half of Mutapa and made them break their vassalage of Butua.

I knew that time wasn't on my side, I needed Feudalism badly to tech up, there were 2 options: Waste tons of points devving up Kalonga or attack much stronger Kilwa. I chose the latter, I recruited 2 merc companies and went all in, when the weakened army of Kilwa just defeated peasant rebels in a nearby province. After defeating their army and destroying Sofala's, I went straight to their capital, while my vassal sieged down Sofala. I ended up annexing their vassal and taking 2 of their coastal provinces. This way I cut off their conquered provinces from Mutapa and eventually they revolted and they couldn't do anything about it.

From now on, I was the number 1 power of East Africa, eventually finishing off both Kilwa and Mutapa and becoming an Economical hegemon in the early 1700s.

01. Maravi Empire.png
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My vassals: Yemen, Mogadishu, Malindi, Rwanda, Chokwe, Zulu Imerina.
My allies: The Commonwealth.

I wish Khoisan was a tag, too. Zulu colour is way too similar to mine.
 
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I decided to go with an aggressive Burgundy campaign, the more passive diplomatic approach was incredibly boring this way was more fun for me at least. I used the Burgundian Entrance CBs you get for being rejected entrance into the HRE to force my way in by PUing Saxony and Bohemia and subjugating Trier, I decided to vassalize the Palatinate and stole the electorate from them. I got an event that brought Poland into the HRE who then somehow managed to be my PU almost right away.

Allies: Spain, Venice, Portugal, Ottomans

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