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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

Pewt

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I really enjoyed this AAR so thank you for that but I find it strange that in the OP's first post he does this "and got a player to cancel all my 1399 vassals to drastically reduce my infamy and save prestige compared to manual cancellation." then ends the session due to other players abusing the vassal system.
Just because both things involved vassals doesn't mean they're at all similar...
 

dcleve

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Just because both things involved vassals doesn't mean they're at all similar...
I would like to thank you as well Pewt. This was eyeopening for me as a SP player.

It can be difficult enough to manage an SP game without pausing -- trying to do a colonial/naval campaign must be a nightmare. The nations that concentrated on Europe tended to do better -- is this common, due to the attention/distraction effect of trying to look at the whole map vs Europe alone?

Since I do SP, the European states are not much of a challenge, so I have not played them much at all.

All the optimizations you did - (religion changes, then back to get various decision options -- selection of NIs to get specific events) are things that clearly matter in MP, but are just piling on in SP.

Are there any advice guides for MP newbies so they would not have to spend months with the game trying to discover these tricks for themselves. If one does not know them, it appears that newbies would be simply non-competitive in MP.

I agree with the comment above though. Friends providing "forced" religion changes, "forced" vassal release, and wartax opportunities in phony wars seems like a very "gamey" misuse of the rules, but seemed to be a key part of the tactics in the game -- objecting to another "gamey" misuse of vassalization as somehow ruining the game strikes me as odd.

Commenting on game history -- Pewt, as an outstanding player starting with the most powerful nation, you were at risk of all the other players ganging up on you at the start, just to remove you as a threat. It looks like you decided to expand only slowly, and do so in the smallest possible provinces, so you looked less threatening on the map, while building your provinces up to the max. This made you much stronger relative to visual dominance than your rivals, and was good psychology. Was that deliberate?

Sweden, Brandenburg, Haansa, Viyanagar, Holland, Chagtai, these are all minor powers, while Burgundy is a major one. Why no Burgundy? This surely helped Pewt tremendously.

Netherlands you made a major blunder in backing France in its early war without securing some ironclad deal. Your only hope for survival in Europe was as the naval arm of a European land power (Austria or France or Prussia). Bitterness over losing your rich euro provinces is sour grapes over poor diplomacy.

Ming, Viyanagar, and Mughals are all pretty powerful non-euro states, and had players, but were eaten without difficulty. It looks like tech catchup is just too difficult in MP.

Italy was well played -- except that they stayed out of France and Austria after their bloodbaths. Pewt demonstrated how easy it was to gut a major power that had bled itself dry, and Italy could easily have done this to him.

Pewt seemed to pay more attention to the land tech step transitions than his opponents, and this ended up being decisive in several sessions.
 
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Pewt

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It can be difficult enough to manage an SP game without pausing -- trying to do a colonial/naval campaign must be a nightmare. The nations that concentrated on Europe tended to do better -- is this common, due to the attention/distraction effect of trying to look at the whole map vs Europe alone?
It's more that europe is more fun so the more experienced players work to stay in, which generally causes the newer players to be forced to go overseas or die.

All the optimizations you did - (religion changes, then back to get various decision options -- selection of NIs to get specific events) are things that clearly matter in MP, but are just piling on in SP.

Are there any advice guides for MP newbies so they would not have to spend months with the game trying to discover these tricks for themselves. If one does not know them, it appears that newbies would be simply non-competitive in MP.
Nope, but most MP players don't know a lot of this kind of thing either, and you'll pick up the more obvious ones (formalized scales, EITC, etc) within a campaign or two.

I agree with the comment above though. Friends providing "forced" religion changes, "forced" vassal release, and wartax opportunities in phony wars seems like a very "gamey" misuse of the rules, but seemed to be a key part of the tactics in the game -- objecting to another "gamey" misuse of vassalization as somehow ruining the game strikes me as odd.
Fake wars to make use of advantageous peace "concessions" are a well established part of multiplayer that everybody does, and don't confer any specific advantage to one player. Forcing vassalization of other players mucks up the game because it prevents you from peacing them and because it's a giant boost of forcelimits, and in doing so it heavily cripples the vassalized player's abilities, meaning you basically force everyone to team up and destroy their own countries if it's allowed in the long run.

Commenting on game history -- Pewt, as an outstanding player starting with the most powerful nation, you were at risk of all the other players ganging up on you at the start, just to remove you as a threat. It looks like you decided to expand only slowly, and do so in the smallest possible provinces, so you looked less threatening on the map, while building your provinces up to the max. This made you much stronger relative to visual dominance than your rivals, and was good psychology. Was that deliberate?
No, it's just that the western European provinces which are best also happen to be small. The stats give everyone a good idea of how strong each nation was, and I was fighting (whether literally or diplomatically) with most of the other players for most of the game as a result.

Sweden, Brandenburg, Haansa, Viyanagar, Holland, Chagtai, these are all minor powers, while Burgundy is a major one. Why no Burgundy? This surely helped Pewt tremendously.
As a rule you rarely see multiple nations in the same area (Burgundy, Poland, Mamluks etc) unless the campaign is very big. In addition, Burgundy vs France tends to be specifically avoided given one kills the other very soon into the game, thus not really adding another player to the campaign and, in the event of burgundy's victory, leaving a ridiculously overpowered nation behind, while not really slowing down France if they win.

Ming, Viyanagar, and Mughals are all pretty powerful non-euro states, and had players, but were eaten without difficulty. It looks like tech catchup is just too difficult in MP.
None of them were very good, but yes, if European really want to kill Asians then Asians will die.

Italy was well played -- except that they stayed out of France and Austria after their bloodbaths. Pewt demonstrated how easy it was to gut a major power that had bled itself dry, and Italy could easily have done this to him.
He was NAPped with me for the better part of the game, so that wasn't an option.

Pewt seemed to pay more attention to the land tech step transitions than his opponents, and this ended up being decisive in several sessions.
It's more that my better income let me actually make use of them. For example, Austria and Prussia were investing just as heavily in Land tech around 18, but I got there a few years first because my income was more than double theirs.
 

unmerged(37198)

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It can be difficult enough to manage an SP game without pausing -- trying to do a colonial/naval campaign must be a nightmare. The nations that concentrated on Europe tended to do better -- is this common, due to the attention/distraction effect of trying to look at the whole map vs Europe alone?
colonial/naval campaigns generally require less micro, and you will not fight as many pvp wars as a european land nation (particularly if the later get stuck in a two front war), concentrating on europe generally just means that you are stronger in the early game, once you start moving into the later half of the game (say 1550 and later), then nations that have relocated start becoming much stronger

Are there any advice guides for MP newbies so they would not have to spend months with the game trying to discover these tricks for themselves. If one does not know them, it appears that newbies would be simply non-competitive in MP.
-most games use the stats page, you can use that as a tool to look at save games and see what others are doing, you can pick up a fair bit of information this way, and maybe it is sort of similar to looking at a recorded game from say starcraft or such
-on top of the mp forum there's a sticky posted by silktrader that deals with the basics (like technical details, checksums, ports forwarding and such)
-the wiki contain a fair bit of helpful info, the part about decisions and NI's (since it lists additional effects of NI's), could be particularly useful

Netherlands you made a major blunder in backing France in its early war without securing some ironclad deal. Your only hope for survival in Europe was as the naval arm of a European land power (Austria or France or Prussia). Bitterness over losing your rich euro provinces is sour grapes over poor diplomacy.
if you are going to aim for survival in europe as NL, then you are probably better of going land like Auqia and Phat have shown in recent games, with your starting sliders your eco will be extremely strong and if you do your dyplo well you have a similar chance of survival on land as burgundy do
 

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a gank can, or player attacking when the ming player start the first cycle of westernization
National defence + mandate of heaven is what, -10 RR ? Combine it with 100 legitimacy and it will take a lot of WE for a Ming player to have any RR.

Imo, only thing that can stop a good Ming player is a good Dutch player who'd invade with LT 18 troops vs puny LT 11 ming/manchu troops.
 

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National defence + mandate of heaven is what, -10 RR ? Combine it with 100 legitimacy and it will take a lot of WE for a Ming player to have any RR.

Imo, only thing that can stop a good Ming player is a good Dutch player who'd invade with LT 18 troops vs puny LT 11 ming/manchu troops.
You lose the Mandate when you start to westernise.
 

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No, you lose the mandate for having low stability (<0) or the modifier Western Influences, so you will lose your -5 rr and gain +5 instead. :)
 

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National defence + mandate of heaven is what, -10 RR ? Combine it with 100 legitimacy and it will take a lot of WE for a Ming player to have any RR.

Imo, only thing that can stop a good Ming player is a good Dutch player who'd invade with LT 18 troops vs puny LT 11 ming/manchu troops.
if you can fit in 3-4 wars while having a sagnificant tech advantage (like say lt 18 vs an lt 10 ming player who have just started to westernize) it really would not mather how good the Ming player is, he would most probably still lose those wars if they are 1vs1's

and even in the late game (post 1600) a well played Ming would struggle badly if ganked 3vs1
 

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a gank can, or player attacking when the ming player start the first cycle of westernization
Who can gang ming 1460?

The asians that ming have already killed?

Europeans cant move enough numbers into asia to make a diffrent untill aprox 1550.

if you can fit in 3-4 wars while having a sagnificant tech advantage (like say lt 18 vs an lt 10 ming player who have just started to westernize) it really would not mather how good the Ming player is, he would most probably still lose those wars if they are 1vs1's

and even in the late game (post 1600) a well played Ming would struggle badly if ganked 3vs1
Ming will always keep up to date in land tech, even in asian tech group they can tech fast enough to be up to date.