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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

McGrey

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Better than Shan? Worse than Shan? No matter, it's Oman!
...
Okay, that was terrible.

One Question. As Ming was weak, why haven't you attacked it directly? Forging a claim beforehand maybe or without a CB and grabbing whatever possible.
 

tnick0225

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SE Asia has been nothing but bad luck! Anyways Oman...that almost looks like a worse position. I guess depending on diplomacy could always go after Iraq. But that'd probably put Oman on the Otto or Yemeni hit lists.
 

unmerged(58610)

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I shan't even comment about such an uneventful 5 years. The Shan like revolting - guess that's where the ADM points went.
Ayyuthya in a PU with Delhi. That is just great or was.

Now to Oman. The Ottomans are those light green provinces west of Iraq. Iraq is likely a vassal. Unless the region has gone through a revolution Morocco, Ottomans and Yemen are all allies. This could be a lonely corner of the world.
 

Hiryuu

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Well, anyway "revenge is a dish best served cold", so maybe you still can get a chance in SE Asia... But, look at that Yemen... I'm not with great hopes for Oman...
 

Orlov Kruskayev

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This "Oh" recalled great AARs from EUIII. :D


Well, it can't be worse than Shan.
 

the_evil_one44

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maybe someday you'll get Ming and be able to destroy all of SE Asia.
 

Stuyvesant

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Does Oman have any colonies in East Africa, or is EU too early for that to have happened? If you do have a nice strip of beachside resort near Tanzania, that would give you something to play with. If you don't... Well, in that case you're kinda shafted.

Hey! At least the Mughals are doing well. And looking all intimidating over there in most of Persia. Though not quite as intimidating as the Yemen-on-Steroids you have for a friendly neighbour... Oh, and look! Portugal has a little outpost in Mughalistan. Perhaps they'd like to repeat history and come pay a visit to you?

Pretty rough neighborhood for delicate little Oman.
 

GreatUberGeek

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Nice little corner of Arabia you got there. Perhaps the only viable option is to attach yourself to some nation or another, unless I'm confusing this with CK...or just attack India.
 

TheKaspa

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Amazing AAR!
Finally I catched up. Let's hope Oman will be a short turn and next time Johan will provide you with a better nation, perhaps in the Americas!
 

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bbqftw: As you'll see, I aspire to having the Ottos as a neighbor!

Golladan: Yemen's done everything right. They'd be no match for the Ottos, but they can really make our lives hell.

Asdfezxcas: It was definitely worth a shot! I think trying to play Pagan stacked the odds a bit too much against you I'm afraid.

Saintrl: Let's try for India!

eugene171: When I first loaded the game, I thought I saw Iraq had no allies and was looking forward to a tasty lunch. Not quite.

McGrey: You know, that's a fair question, and perhaps why Johan made me leave Shan. I suppose Ming is intimidating no matter what their manpower, and it would have been easy for them to just build an army in the north of the country and avoid me until they were ready to counterstrike. By the end of my 5 years they were already back around 20-25,000. I also didn't want Ming to have a reason to build and march an army down south to deal with the Shan Patriots.

tnick0225: It's not a great position, and that worries me just a little for our long term game prospects. There are more regional blobs than say the real world - and that's fine. It's preferable even from a game play point of view. It will, however, turn more and more of the smaller countries into roadbumps or simply boring.

Chief Ragusa: Yeah, the Ayutthaya/Orissa PU ruined that turn. (And my appetite.) The good news is Iraq is NOT anyone's vassal. I did some poking around: Iraq was founded by a successful nationalist movement vs. Qara Qoyunlu in 1457. Since then they've been in numerous wars with all their neighbors.

Hiryuu: Oh, revenge in SE Asia is cold enough. Maybe we'll still get our chance if Johan keeps throwing us over there enough.

Orlov Kruskayev: Define 'worse.'

the_evil_one44: That would solve all my problems wouldn't it? (Assuming Ming's done away with that bureaucracy of theirs by the time I get over.)

Stuyvesant: No colonies in East Africa alas. So far Mombasa (ne' Swahili) is still the superpower over there. The Mughals do look nice and impressive, as does Yemen. I'd rather Portugal not attack me, but if they wanted to pound on Yemen for awhile that could be great fun.

GreatUberGeek: Unfortunately attaching is going to take some work, as that means an alliance. India is definitely a growth opportunity though.

Kiddo3: Deal!

TheKaspa: The Americas aren't looking too promising yet: Spanish, Portuguese and a few Dutch colonies. Iroquois borders Spain. Shawnee, Aztecs and Incas have no neighbors at all. Incidentally, the handful of Breton colonies were taken over by Spain when Spain diploannexed them. Sheesh.

jdeska: This is actually your second post here, but I'm very glad you're enjoying it!
 

CatKnight

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CHAPTER XII: OMAN
Part 1: The Valiant Die But Once
(1615-1620)


Good morning, ladies and gentlemen: This is your captain speaking. Today's Sun n Fun flight across the Arab Peninsula will take us through some very rough weather. We expect heavy turbulence and ask that you stay seated with your belts fastened for the duration of the flight. Please do not be alarmed if this plane tips upside down. Our wings are equipped with lift and control surfaces on both sides, and anyway crashing into that mountain in Luxembourg was NOT. MY. FAULT! As always, thank you for flying CatKnight Airlines.


In this Corner...

Oman! In another time and place this would be a great nation to play! Occupied perhaps since Sumerian times, Oman converted to Islam during the seventh century. They played a critical role in the spread of the faith and built a strong trading empire. The Portuguese owned Muscat until 1650 who used it as a base for their own operations. Ultimately rebels drove them out, who were in turn expelled by the current line of ruling sultans.

In this particular reality, Oman has been overshadowed by the Yemeni, who for their part conquered the western Arab peninsula, Ethiopia and southern Egypt. We must be cautious.

I suppose we should take a look around.

161501OmanTerrain_zps2dde317a.jpg


Hm. Not quite what I had in mind.

161501OmanSetup_zpsf235b77e.jpg


That's better.

Ya'rub II is a decent strategist - and not much else. He's not well liked: Not only because he insists on rivalries with nations more powerful than Oman, but because he's trying to balance an Anti-Piracy Act with supporting Privateers. Perhaps they're only pirates if they're not Omanli?

Our diplomatic situation is pretty basic: Yemen, Iraq, Persia and Qara Qoyunlu hate us, and all have gone through the necessary steps to reassure us of that: Rivalries, embargos and so forth. The feeling is mutual since we're embargoing them right back, which if you think about it must make it really fun to be a merchant in this part of the world.

"So, Captain. Shall we land in Basra?"

"No, sire, for the Iraqi hate us with an undying passion and will surely slit our throats."

"Oh. Well, how about Bushehr?"

"The Persians hate us, but not as much as the Iraqi. They will let us dock on Tuesdays, but only if we let them shave the cat."

"Well, damn them and their Shi'ite faith."

"Yes, sire....Wait!"

That's right: There are now three Shi'ite nations in the world, and we hate each other. The Ottomans like us well enough, but not enough to overcome the malus for being infidel. Nor do we have the option to convert, or I would in a second.

Iraq is forging a claim on us, which would be a joke if they weren't best friends with Yemen. The Ottos won't ally with us, but they HAVE warned Iraq, which leads me to believe we're safe.

More to come on that.

We have merchants in Basra, Indus and Ceylon(?). Let's move the one in Ceylon to the Gulf of Aden, and collect from all three nodes. Our army stands at 16K, and we have 34 ships; 1 heavy, 20 light, 10 galleys and 3 transports.

So, plan A (before looking around) was to stomp Iraq, then Persia, then Qara Qoyunlu. If it weren't for Yemen I could manage the first. Persia has a 34K army, and Qara Qoyunlu appears to be an Ottoman protectorate.

Plan B then: Improve relations with the Ottos. Replace our naval reformer with a Diplomat (+30 Better Relations Over Time) to make up for our sultan's poor manners. For our next trick, invade India!

Why India? Well, why not India? Yemen's too big, Iraq has an ally, the Mughals are untouchable and are allied with Baluchistan. Next is Ahmednagar and Marathas, the latter of which is getting the crap kicked out of it by Delhi. The plan? MA through Ahmednagar, transport my army to western India, then rip out Marathas' coastline. Brilliant!

Until April 1615, when Iraq declared war. Yemen joins in. Then, just for fun, since we don't border the Ottoman Empire their 'warning' doesn't go off. We're outnumbered 4:1, and help isn't coming.

Excuse me. I need to lie down.


Operation: Desert Gust of Wind

The news could be worse. For example, the game could have crashed, or the sun could have gone supernova. As it is we have three regiments in the middle of the Indian Ocean, easily recalled. We simply cannot defeat the Yemeni army, so Plan C is to land near Qatar, push northwards and force Iraq (as war leader) to the table. In order to end this as soon as possible we give the army to Ya'rub Khoury (F1 S1 M2 Sg3).

The opening days of the war go well: Our trading fleets chase the Yemeni from the seas capturing four ships and giving our fleet plenty of time to bring the 'Indian' army home. By June we've gathered our entire army on the Iraqi border, and they oblige us by visiting.

The Iraqi have 11K, but we still have 16. It's a bit of a pyrrhic victory, with both sides losing 4-5,000 men, but this kind of exchange favors us. Khoury chases them into Iraq.

Meanwhile, the Yemeni battle fleet and comes upon my other trading fleet, mauling it.

161507OpeningSalvoes_zpsb86699f1.jpg


No matter. We can trade again when the war's done: First, both Iraq and Yemen have impressive fleets, so we merge ours into a doomstack to hunt/blockade. By September 1615, Khoury's hunted down the last of the Iraqi army. The plan now is simple: Siege all of Iraq's provinces. Up until this point, Yemen hasn't sieged one of ours. We'll win.

That's when I notice the Yemeni hunter/killer stack patiently working its way through southern Iraq. They give battle in October, some 27K on my 14K. The results are predictable and we rout towards the Omani capital of Muscat. That's where the Yemeni sieging army (19K) catches Khoury giving him another cruel mauling.

There's hope though! Through the winter of 1615-1616 we locate the Yemeni navy in port! Blockade them in. Move single ship blockaders to invest their other properties, then spare what we can for Iraq's ports in the Persian Gulf. By March 1616 their entire coastline is blockaded. The warscore is heavily in our favor, and while it's too soon to expect them to give up that day will come.

Just to make sure of that, after Khoury finishes running away we buy him two mercenaries and throw him at a smaller siege army.

That's about when the tide turned.


Reverses

161606ItGetsReal_zps328ad913.jpg


In June 1616 the Iraqi fleet broke out. Fortunately they seemed content to patrol the Persian Gulf, but it was a sign: Simply not enough resources. Not enough men. Not enough ships. Later that month Khoury pushed a Yemeni army out of Nizwa, but reinforcements arrived. A second battle, this time with some 26K Yemeni on 13K, shoved him to Bani Yas. This time they pursued, destroying our army entirely in August.

161608ResistanceFutile_zpsa08ffca6.jpg


A lesser man would seek peace at this point. A lesser man would give in to any reasonable demands. A lesser man tried, but since Qatar (the whole point of this war) was still in Omani hands, Iraq had nothing it wanted to negotiate for. Instead I grit my teeth and hoped the blockade would hold. Yemen, at least (and perhaps strangely), seemed to be getting tired of this. A few months, then perhaps they'd see reason and we could focus on giving Iraq the beating it deserved.

In December 1616 the Yemeni fleet broke out.

With both enemy fleets free, single ship blockades weren't going to cut it. Our navy fled first to Muscat, then to Bahrain, an island near the Iraqi border which will soon become very important. The Yemeni fleet caught four of our traders/blockaders during the rout.

This led to a wave of obscurantism where people openly wondered what the hell we were fighting over. I agreed with them for +2 RR. If we can't win conventionally, let's make the land ungovernable.

Meanwhile, we raised six regiments using seven loans to keep up the pressure on the Yemeni advance. The hunter-killer stack ate them in March.

161706EnterPeasants_zps6bea3e49.jpg


In June 1617 the peasants in Muscat, probably upset that we had no army to do something about the invaders, took matters into their own hands. It was hopeless of course, but a welcome diversion for now Plan K came into focus.

K, for Keep Away.


The Sea Wolf

Meet Sayf Jomaa. When I met Jomaa, he was inexplicably in command of one of our trade fleets. His ratings are F3 S0 M6, so I gave him our battle fleet. Jomaa spent the past several months steadily repairing his fleet, while I built my army on Bahrain. Bahrain is an island with no straits, this means the only way the Yemeni are taking away our last province and forcing us to the table is through amphibious assault.

While building our army, Jomaa visited the Iraqi fleet in October, delivering a sound thrashing and capturing two ships. Their fleet began bouncing in and out of port, apparently torn between repairing their ships and keeping the Persian Gulf clear. I added to the confusion by having Jomaa copy his movements, setting up a patrol between the open sea and Bahrain. Finally we blundered into each other again leading to another beating in February 1618. One month later he caught the entire Iraqi fleet, sending them to the bottom of the ocean.

Flush with success, it was time to challenge the Yemeni at the Straits of Hormuz, the narrowest point between the Arab Peninsula and Persia. We should have lost: They had 27 ships to our 26, including 7 carracks, but in the narrow waters our galleasses and superior leadership won out. We took away 5 of their pretty ships.

161806TheSeaLion_zps7cc663c9.jpg


In nine months we've gained 8 ships, and they've lost 21. They haven't been back.

BWAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAAHA!


Is it Over?

Well, no. Even as Jomaa kicked wooden butt, first Muscat then Nizwa fell. This means the tide's turning, and my army in Bahrain can't do anything about it. Indeed, that's not their job.

It's the peasants:

161812TargetSunni_zps68c82320.jpg


It's now January 1620. Suhar, one up from Muscat, has been under siege for over a year and will fall sooner or later.

162001OmanSituation_zpsa9a5b834.jpg



The truth is we can't win. Not in a conventional manner at least. I have no idea why that Iraqi army has just sat there, especially considering Qatar's the objective: Perhaps they fear what I have on Bahrain.

Our only hope is Bahrain. I've queued enough troops to bring that up to 12, and in time I imagine our fleet will wind up stationed there again. Once the rest of the country is occupied, I'm sure our economy will collapse, but time's on our side. We paid off those seven loans, and the Yemeni AI is finally going to realize it has better things to do than try to break past my fleet.

That's when it'll be time to have a chat with Iraq.

This isn't over.


Johan's Dice

Reign: 5 years
Roll Needed: 2+
Roll: 6
Continue: Yes

We're just getting this party started.
 
Last edited:

tnick0225

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Seems the naval strategy has been able to keep you afloat. Hope Yemen gets bored fighting over sand for Iraq.

Seems Iraq is fairly hell-bent on snaking its way down the Arabian Peninsula though. With luck your strategy will pay off though, and bring Iraq to its knees. May even be able to force them into releasing some places or better yet, breaking their alliances with with everyone. Not sure which would be better.

Speaking of which whenever I see Iraq or Baghdad in an AAR I begin remembering the good old days of my 15 months of playing in the sand.

But keep up the great work, you may be able to pull a miracle off with ole Oman :)
 

unmerged(58610)

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That's the spirit! Situation hopeless, attack. You're going to try to take all of Iraq before Yemen completes all its sieges and then just annexes Oman. You may just pull it off, if only because Yemen is only sieging one of your provinces at a time.
 

Nikolai

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That's a LOT of battles!
 

McGrey

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Congratulations for not Rage-Quitting (which is, what I would have done half way down)! But I like your tactic, using Bahrain as a save haven and and waging a naval war of attrition. It's thrilling! I... uhm... I don't know if there is a english equivalent to "Daumen drücken", sooooo.... good luck!
 

Saintrl

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Excellent work commander; I expect a full report next week on your continued progress.

May I recommend rushing MIL tech 16 if possible? Muslim Musketeer Cavalry would greatly benefit your troops.

Bored Tactical Commander, you are dismissed!
 

GreatUberGeek

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Oman, this (bleep) just got real! :D Sorry.
 

Seelmeister

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Wow, what an action packed update. Your line about the three Shi'ite states of the world reminded me of the sketch in Monty Python's The Life of Bryan where the Peoples Front of Judea hate the Romans - but not as much as they hate the Judean Peoples Front or Popular Front of Judea!