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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

Le Jones

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Both Master Darius and Robert seemed surprised, but Martin had more experience in this game. “Lady Parr?” At her nod he continued. “I suppose his house is still usable, and might make a reasonable base on the Island. There will need to be a proper story, otherwise we may have too many nosy neighbours. I believe Bartholemew had put about Robert and his family being attacked due to a smuggling gang.”
I've quoted from this as I had two notions / question floating around as I read this. 1), the meeting read like a cross between a Godfather style conflab and a military briefing (and as ever well-depicted) and 2), I was wondering how on Earth they'd hide their 'predilections' from the 'oomans'.
 

Bullfilter

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An Italian connection: Fascist or Mafia vampires? They need to get Oliver Stone going on the conspiracy analysis. Who stands to benefit from whatever it is the enemy are trying to do? Of course, it could be a smokescreen for some internal plot or power play. Even Lady Parr herself, running a deep and double game. I trust her even less than the rest of this rum crew.
 

stnylan

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I think Martin’s right: everything seems far too up in the air for it to quite be a plan. But it does at least like we are drawing close to …something.
Martin, to be fair, has experience on trying to turn the intentions of his Masters into workable plans on the ground.

I've quoted from this as I had two notions / question floating around as I read this. 1), the meeting read like a cross between a Godfather style conflab and a military briefing (and as ever well-depicted) and 2), I was wondering how on Earth they'd hide their 'predilections' from the 'oomans'.
Certainly there is a sense of a semi-formal planning meeting, which is quite intentional.

As to your second point, do you mean generally or this specific group as they go about their business? For if this specific group the ones out in the open will largely be Martin and Robert, who have a much easier time. For the others .. they are ways and methods. But the greatest aid to remaining hidden is the human ability not to see, aided by the judicious use of violence, coercion, money, and so on. In the source material though the threat of discovery becomes increasingly more urgent from the 80s and onward. Though the arrival fo the internet offers its own myriad possibilities to create skepticism and doubt of any uncomfortable claims.

But ... should the secret truly get out it will not be pretty. There is a reason these rules exist, after all.

An Italian connection: Fascist or Mafia vampires? They need to get Oliver Stone going on the conspiracy analysis. Who stands to benefit from whatever it is the enemy are trying to do? Of course, it could be a smokescreen for some internal plot or power play. Even Lady Parr herself, running a deep and double game. I trust her even less than the rest of this rum crew.
Well, maybe not mafia or fascist vampires - but let us be honest, a shadow famiilial governing structure with its fingers in all the pies of legimitate governance ... there is considerable overlap. Fascist movement might be a little recent for older creatures to take advantage of. Younger ones, possibilty. Mafia families though might be the perfect vehicle for some.

Otherwise, yes yes and yes. That is one of the signatures of this setting as I envision it - there is next to no real trust, these are creatures who can play a very long game, and the fact everyone operates in a very partial infomation situation.

I am glad you "like" Lady Parr.


All
So this update is probably the one I am overall least happy with thus far. Partly that is because it feels very procedural. I did seriously try to stuff the necessary information into the preceeding Martin update somehow, or into the next one ... but for differnet reasons I could not make either work to my satisfaction. And I wanted to have an update with Lady Parr more present than she has been thus far. I find her quiet difficult to write in a way that does not feel to me like caricature.

I also have a decision to make. Today the next country pack for HoI4 has been announced, which will add Greece, Bulgaria, and Turkey to the countries with unique Focus Trees (@Bullfilter I think you will find the Turkish tree to be 'of interest' as it were). It is due out on October 15th.

Thing is, I don't know whether to restart the game I am playing which this is AAR is being based on. We are, of course, currently a year or so before gamestart, though here and there a game items are being referenced. If I were to restart I could probably replicate that by use of game rules to force the AI to select the focus path they chose in this run through (I played with Historical Focus off). On the other hand ... I would lose over 3½ years of meticulously recorded gameplay which would be a bit of a bugger. Though I suppose I could view it as a massive trial run, as I have gotten quite determined about what information I do and do not wish to record. Restarting would allow the use of these three new focus trees by the AI, which would complete the more important Balkan nations (sorry Albania, you don't count), plus Turkey - all of which might make the region and Eastern Med a more intriguing place.

Alternatively I can continue with my current save, by continuing to play on the older version (presuming the new versoin is not save game compatible). The particular detail that has me seroiusly considering this option - other than my time investment thus far - is given my writing pace the game will inevitably overtake whatever versoin I am basing it on.

So I am going ot make a cup of tea and decide what to do.
 
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Specialist290

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While I'm personally an advocate of going with the decision that you're personally most comfortable with as an author, my personal preference (and the way I believe you're leaning anyway by my own interpretation, if I'm totally honest) is to keep rolling with what work you've already done. As you've said, it's likely that future updates will overtake your writing anyway, and the advantage of a heavily narrative-based AAR like yours is that you don't necessarily have to stick strictly to the events of the game per se -- if you choose to take a few liberties here or there, I doubt that any but the most eagle-eyed of readers who have an intimate familiarity with the mechanics (which does not include me) will even notice.

Either way, though, I will obviously continue to follow and support whatever decision you make :)
 
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TheButterflyComposer

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Since it's so...not game focused at all (I understand this might change a little when you reach the start date), I'm not sure it makes much difference, and you obviously can't tell us much more without spoilers (not that I personally mind spoilers but as this is a sort of mystery as well as horror, best not to have them), I would suggest going with whatever makes sense. If the Balkans are central to the plot, and would benefit from being more interesting (or rather, play test the scenario first and compare your two games)...otherwise, I don't see much use in getting rid of meticulous notes and images.
 
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DensleyBlair

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If you are looking for input, stnylan, I’ll add my voice to the emerging consensus. My own views on the subject, predictably, are to do whatever you feel most helps in telling the story you want to tell – whether that means decades of meticulously noted gameplay, or a vague idea sparked by a few months of crisis. Either way, I’m sure the end product will be just as compelling as it has been thus far. :)
 
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Le Jones

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This probably won't help but I'll offer it anyway...

I have a similar conundrum but have played, in ARP, to early '42 with a major (and, thank God, almost plausible) war now virtually done and an intriguing postwar settlement looming. Like you, I suspect, I waited for LaR to spice up the gameplay (it does) but I have to accept that for both us there are aspects of our AARs that would change, potentially, with new Focus Trees. I have decided to keep going - the Focus Trees are as often a hindrance as they are helpful. With your skill and flair you don't need them.
 
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El Pip

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An Italian connection: Fascist or Mafia vampires? They need to get Oliver Stone going on the conspiracy analysis. Who stands to benefit from whatever it is the enemy are trying to do? Of course, it could be a smokescreen for some internal plot or power play. Even Lady Parr herself, running a deep and double game. I trust her even less than the rest of this rum crew.
It does appear you could go a very long way in the Vampire world just by being direct and blatant. Everyone would spend their entire time trying to double guess deep misdirections that aren't there and have no time left over to actually do anything.

But it passes the time I suppose, and is that not the main thing?


On the question of DLCs I can only suggest update the game, wipe the screenshots, burn the notes and laugh manically as all around you is destroyed and then re-made in the new game. I don't really think that's a good idea, but someone had to play devil's advocate and suggest it.
 
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