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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

Mortu

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Nobody messes with Mother Russia and lives to tell about it! ^_^
 

Chris Taylor

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Relations with France still kind of suck (-150), no? You'd better hope for a Russian war, as getting into a brawl with France (or rather, France West, France East, Arabian France and Bolivarian France) would be an epic meatgrinder. :eek:
 

morningSIDEr

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Good stuff. Interesting to see Japan's continued involvement in European affairs. I like the description of the scandal which brought about the Milanese war. I'm also rather surprised that Frace was defeated by Russia. War with either France or a very large and powerful Russia, they must be to have bested France, should prove great. I just hope that neither of those adopt Austria's monster death stack strategy, as that was surprisingly effective, if for only for a while!
 

Dewirix

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How?
How did Russia beat France?
Suvorov in charge?

I suspect they did it with massive numbers. France's territory is split into two more-or-less equal halves, while Russian territory is an unbroken whole.

My guess is that the Russians came down into the Balkans when most of the French were absent.

Nice update! :)

I had thought that, but looking at what happens in Metropolitan France suggests that they must have at least some troops in Asia Minor, just probably nowhere near enough.

Interesting - is there going to be a showdown with the Russians before it's all said and done? :D

Nice work,i too want a russian showdown.

Nobody messes with Mother Russia and lives to tell about it! ^_^

See, I'm going with Mortu on this one. I could fight a war with Russia, but I'm not really sure what I or the Empire would get out of it, aside from bragging rights. If I do convert this to Victoria II I'll want some people left to fight.

Relations with France still kind of suck (-150), no? You'd better hope for a Russian war, as getting into a brawl with France (or rather, France West, France East, Arabian France and Bolivarian France) would be an epic meatgrinder. :eek:

That was the first of many bribes to France - I eventually got relations to +200. As a non-Christian power my relations with just about everyone in Europe, aside from the states I've freed, are -200.

Good stuff. Interesting to see Japan's continued involvement in European affairs. I like the description of the scandal which brought about the Milanese war. I'm also rather surprised that Frace was defeated by Russia. War with either France or a very large and powerful Russia, they must be to have bested France, should prove great. I just hope that neither of those adopt Austria's monster death stack strategy, as that was surprisingly effective, if for only for a while!

Milan will continue to prove to be a thorn in the side of a peace-loving Japan. I've adopted a less confrontational end to this AAR than it seems many of you were hoping as I'm still thinking of this as the mid-point rather than the end of the game.

On that note, does anybody have any tips on how I could convert this to Victoria II? I've had a look at the conversion project that Sid Meier is heading up, but I think I'll need to do something more tailored.
 

Dewirix

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Journey's End: 1808 to 1821

Kashiwabara, November 1797 -

France's defeat at the hands of Russia was a blow to the very foundations of Japan's European policy. With thousands of miles separating the Imperial forces from reinforcements, a strong ally was seen as vital to Japanese interests.

The Russian war had put that strategy in jeopardy. France was weakened from the fighting and was now unable to keep order at home, much less provide assistance to Japan. It was decided that Japanese troops would be sent into France itself to put down the rebellions that were springing up all over the south.

In April 1811 Field Marshal Maeda led a Franco-Japanese army to decisively crush Vittorio Balbo and his pro-Milanese rebels. Milan itself, as a client state of Japan, could only look on as her compatriots were slaughtered by the thousands.

frenchwars.png


The Japanese intervention bolstered the de la Tour regime at the time of its greatest need, strengthening the ties between the two countries immensely. As the nineteenth century wore on France was to show that she was still an important force internationally. The accession of Jean III in 1813 breathed new life into the country.

thrace.png


In October 1818 the French completed their crusade to drive the Ottomans from Europe as Constantiople fell into their hands. Jean III himself rode into the city at the head of an army of 80,000 troops to accept the Ottoman surrender. Japan's hopes for a strong ally in Europe were still very much alive.

However, even as France was regaining her old power, the Empire's enemies - both declared and de facto - were growing stronger still. In April 1814 Russia concluded a humiliating victory over Finland, which was forced to cede five provinces and pay a massive indemnity to Pytor III.

russia.png


Russia was unquestionably one of the great powers of the west, but more worrying to the Empire was its continued expansion eastwards. Eventually it would border Japanese territory directly and the threat of war would cease to be merely a distant concern.

As the Finnish war was drawing to its conclusion so to was the life of Japan's most talented soldier. In February 1814 Field Marshall Maeda died without fulfilling his wish of returning home. Maeda had been the architect of the Empire's victory in the Great Austrian War and had helped to police Europe in its aftermath.

maeda.png


His body was embalmed for its return to Kyoto and a state funeral. Jean III was only the greatest of the many European rulers who were present at Livorno to bid a final farewell to the great general.

The death of Maeda had a subtle but undeniably negative effect on the Japanese command in Europe. Without the great man's energy and experience a lassitude took hold that was to lead to a humiliating reverse for the Empire.

styria.png


In March 1815, less than a year after Maeda's death, Austria reoccupied Styria despite the presence of a Japanese garrison with orders to prevent just such an occurence. No one in the European command had been prepared to take responsiblity for an outbreak of hostilities on such a scale, and the Austrians took full advantage of this fact. Japan now faced the spectre of a resurgent Austria alongside an overmighty Russia.

Closer to home the Empire was afflicted by the headaches that normally beset a regional hegemon. The South Seas were a source of constant warfare between Japanese clients and their enemies, with small wars springing up and being swiftly put down by the superior quality of the Empire's far-flung garrisons.

In 1813 an attempt was made to put a stop to Malacca's expansionist tendencies once and for all, by forcing the state to transfer land to Aceh, one of Japan's regional allies.

aceh.png


While successful in its immediate aim of expanding an ally at the expense of an enemy the strategy did little to pacify a region which continued to see sporadic warfare throughout the period - albeit never on a scale to seriously inconvenience Japan.

Kashiwabara and his advisers and ministers were content to maintain the borders of the Empire without launching ever-bolder enterprises against far-flung foes. It seemed that after the great upheavals of the eighteenth century Japan was content to reap the rewards of her power and stability.

However, in December 1819 the Empire's hand was forced when the new Duke of Milan, Ascanio Maria d'Este, declared war on neighbouring Tuscany in a bid to unite northern Italy. Milan's ambition's were a threat to Modena, whose Dukes also reigned as King of Sicily in the south. Modena and Japan had clashed earlier in the century and the Empire could not allow its Milanese allies to be humbled by a hostile power.

modenanwar.png


The initial stages of the war went very much in the Empire's favour. The opening clash at Mantua was a decisive Japanese victory, although the size of the Modenan force was cause for concern. General Hara, although not as gifted as his predecessor, made the most of his technological and tactical superiority to establish control of the Po valley.

milanesewin.png


Milan concluded the war in just the same way as it had started it - unilaterally. Japan was now left without any clear war goals, but Kashiwabara urged that the fight should be continued to maximise the damage inflicted against Modena.

siegesend.png


The participation of troops from the Palatinate gave Japanese ministers the idea that Modena's grip on northern Italy could be removed through a series of separate and unfavourable peace deals. Thus the war was allowed to continue with Imperial troops providing protection for smaller armies sieges.

In later 1820 disaster struck when an unexpectedly large Modenan force surprised a poorly-led Japanese garrison in Romagna. Despite giving a good account of themselves, the Imperial soldiers were forced to retreat and risked annihilation.

romagna.png


The permanent destruction of 17,000 troops would mean a far greater loss than could be offset by any conceivable gain. General Hara was swift in offering Modena a ceasefire, which eventually became a general peace.

By the dawn of 1821 Japan stood perhaps a little less mighty than she had done at the beginning of the century, but was still reckoned the greatest of the powers. What the rest of the nineteenth century would bring was unknown.
 

PrawnStar

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Excellent stuff, really enjoyed the AAR & it's good you finally got to do the wrap up post!
 

Malurous

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Congrats, good to see this one taken to the end. It's an absolute gem. :) Both the writing and the game.

Hopefully you find a way to take this to Vicky II, the world situation remains very interesting after all.
 

Dewirix

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Nein!
Do not stop!

New AARs coming?

The plan to do a Vicky 2 AAR is in the pipeline. No plans for EU3 yet as I think I'd buy and learn Divine Wind first.

It's the end of good story :)

Thanks, I'm glad you've enjoyed it.

Excellent stuff, really enjoyed the AAR & it's good you finally got to do the wrap up post!

Yeah, I'm relieved to have finally made it. I'm not sure how you manage to do as much as you do with your AARs, but I appreciate them all the more now I've an inkling of the work that goes into them.

Congrats, good to see this one taken to the end. It's an absolute gem. :) Both the writing and the game.

Hopefully you find a way to take this to Vicky II, the world situation remains very interesting after all.

Thanks again for the kind words, especially given the quality of your AAR. The Victoria II conversion is very tempting, but having given the unofficial converter a try last week it's clear I have to learn how to mod the save still further as there are countries alive in my game that don't exist in V2. I'm particuarly keen on keeping Trebizond around in South America. :)
 

Dewirix

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State of the Nation: 1399 to 1821

It's with mixed feelings that I write this, the final update for the Yamato Destiny (conversion to Vicky 2 notwithstanding). On the one hand I'm coming to the end of what's been a far longer journey than I anticipated. On the other, I'm really happy that I've been able to make it to the end at all. As I've said before it took far longer than I first thought it would.

This update is intended to provide an overview of the whole game from Japan's humble beginnings to its eventual emergence as one of the great powers - if not the greatest. As I said when I started out I wanted to keep expansion vaguely historical, in the sense of where an externally-aggressively Japan might go. Arguably I overstepped this in the eighteenth century when I began a colonisation kick, but I don't think the final map looks too outrageous (at least where I'm concerned).


Economy

One of the surprising things about the game is how Japan's economy took off during the seventeenth century. By 1821 Japan's GDP is much larger than even the big European empires. Of note here is how strong the Russians are, although their inflation has reached a staggering 53%.

In addition, note the strong performance of Sind, Madurai and Ceylon. The latter is there as a result of its excellent trading abilities, but the other two have carved out impressive Indian empires.

incomes1821.jpg


The graph below shows how Japan's economy has broadly tracked the increase in the number of provinces, although the comparison can be somewhat misleading as the province count starts from a much higher base.

It can also be noted that after the conquering spree of the seventeenth century Japan has grown at a much more sober pace.

pctmi1821.jpg



Technology

As I said way back in the introduction, I like to be leading a high-tech nation, and by the end of the game that's exactly what Japan has become. I'm facing ahead-of-time penalties in all tech groups, but there's not much else to spend that monthly investment on.

tech1821.jpg


The tech comparison actually shows that I've slowed down in tech speed as compared to the 1799 update when I had a decent lead across all categories. Part of this is down to ahead-of-time penalties being a great leveller, the other part possibly indicating I've let the trade game slide a bit.

techcomp1821.jpg


This graph shows how tech speed has slowed compared to the eighteenth century, which is when I westernised. That, coupled with the rapid increase of monthly income shot my average tech level up by almost 50 in the course of 100 years. In a way it would have been interesting to see what would have happened had I not westernised, but that's probably another game in itself.

atmip1821.jpg



Military

Militarily I've not done much these past 21 years. The graph below shows the huge increases in army and navy sizes were confined to the eighteenth century and Japan's wars with the European powers. Since then, my tech lead has meant that I don't need to field quite as large an army as my rivals.

asns1821.jpg


Speaking of army sizes, in the past two decades the Russians have added over 80,000 new troops to their roster. France, Castille, Austria and even Great Britain field more troops than I do, although in the latter case they don't really have the manpower to sustain operations on that scale. Again, Sind and Madurai aren't doing too badly either. Modena, who caught me on the hop in the last war, field a respectable 63,000 men.

Armed forces comparison: 1799
troopsize1799.jpg


Armed forces comparison: 1821
armies1821.jpg



Home affairs

overview1821.jpg


Unlike the last update, we have a rival and a threat again - Castille. I'm not sure that's entirely justified as we share a single-province border in Siberia and I think I can handle them navally, but there you go: the price of playing in the big leagues.

Also of note is Japan's foreign relations. We're at 193 with France, which should make a Japanese-Spanish war a less appealing prospect in Madrid. The patient European diplomacy seems to have paid off to a degree as Japan has a number of prominent allies on the continent. Furthermore, the Empire has been successful in keeping the European colonisers out of mainland Asia proper - Siberia notwithstanding.


The Court
court1821.jpg


And here's the Emperor himself and his now middle-aged heir. Kashiwabara's been a great and long-lived ruler and has handily allowed me to achieve another of my aims - retaining the same dynasty throughout the game. It would have been unfortunate if the Yamato line had died out given the name of the AAR!

In terms of the advisers, I was running out people I really had a need for, which explains why the Sheriff is there.

Slider-wise I'd have liked to go a little more Free Trade, but apart from that I'm very happy with how things have turned out. My low stability costs and good monthly investment/province ratio have meant I could swap out some of the older NIs and replace them with good new ones. The switch to Constitutional Monarch was more-or-less a flavour thing, but I was thinking of starting Japan as one in Victoria 2. Now I might go for Prussian Constitutionalism instead to give me a little more leeway to evolve throughout the game.

sliders1821.jpg


As the charts show, being religiously tolerant has played havoc with conversions away from the state religion, although the colonisation kick has helped Shinto remain dominant. The same can be said for the cultural situation. I'm pretty sure all the non-core provinces are colonies as I've sold the few I've taken in wars.

charts1821.jpg



World affairs

Finally, here's the overview of Japan's Empire in 1821. Not a great change from 20 years ago, but with the populace reaping the benefits of peace and stability there didn't seem like much reason to hazard it all in acquisitive warfare.

Elsewhere, the Russian Empire has not quite reached the Pacific yet, and Spanish colonisers might make sure it never does. India is looking fairly sensible, partitioned as it is between Sind in the north and Madurai in the south.

Japan in 1821
japan1821.jpg


Asia in 1821
asia1821.jpg


Europe and Africa in 1821

In Europe, the Russian bear has swallowed many of its western neighbours and now borders Bohemia, Austria and France. Spain hasn't managed to control North Africa, but has done much better further south. France is just being silly.

euafrica1821.jpg


The Americas in 1821

The Americas are home to a number of indigenous nations and exiles, the latter of which include Aragon, Great Britain and Trebizond, who've been warring with Colombia over control of that region. Mexico is a new creation of mine having been rested from Britain during the war. Canada is a revolter that has nothing to do with me, as is Argentina in the south.

sa1821.jpg



Conclusion

And that's that! Like I said, it's been a much bigger job than I'd anticipated when I started, but has provided me with a lot of fun. I'd just like to thank everyone for reading and especially those of you who've dropped by to leave comments, observations and suggestions. It's nice to know I'm not just talking to a wall!
 

Enewald

Enewald Enewald Enewald
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What a mighty empire!
You could have destroyed all stronger than thee, would have been bloody interesting. :p
 

morningSIDEr

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A belated congratulations on bringing a wonderful AAR to a close. A bit of a pity that the great Maeda passed away before the game ended, and that the war with Modena finished slightly unsatisfactorily. However Japan is most definetly the world power at the end of the game, which is a cracking achievement. I just hope this will continue on into V2!
 

Chris Taylor

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I like the endgame wrap-up and charts; great way to visualise Japan's progress through the ages. I am impressed with the tech progress in particular; well done considering you had to westernise along the way.

How goes the Vicky II conversion? I presume you are doing it manually and not waiting around for the under-development EU3toVic2 converter?
 

Ashantai

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What a mighty and most spectacular AAR! I am so pleased that you managed to finish it. This was a great AAR, and I enjoyed it a lot! :) Thanks for having the patience to persevere until the end!
 

Dewirix

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Great AAR! I really liked the way you presented the updates! :)

Thanks, although I think I would have benefitted from a little more discipline at the beginning. I veered wildly between gameplay and history-book to begin with!

What a mighty empire!
You could have destroyed all stronger than thee, would have been bloody interesting. :p

Well, it's probably good to leave some challenges for later (of which more info below).

Extremely well done. Congrats on the conclusion of your excellent AAR.

Thanks, it certainly felt good to finish it off.

A belated congratulations on bringing a wonderful AAR to a close. A bit of a pity that the great Maeda passed away before the game ended, and that the war with Modena finished slightly unsatisfactorily. However Japan is most definetly the world power at the end of the game, which is a cracking achievement. I just hope this will continue on into V2!

The war with Modena was certainly a bit of a sobering event. I was really just playing out the endgame, but taking your eye off the ball has good historical precedent and they deserved their white peace.

I like the endgame wrap-up and charts; great way to visualise Japan's progress through the ages. I am impressed with the tech progress in particular; well done considering you had to westernise along the way.

How goes the Vicky II conversion? I presume you are doing it manually and not waiting around for the under-development EU3toVic2 converter?

I did like the charts. Playing around with Excel is always fun, even when the stats involved are purely imaginary. More details on the conversion below.

I hope you conver this myself, it would definitely be interesting.

That's the plan. Hopefully Russia, France, Austria and perhaps even GB still present a decent challenge. The German states should all be able to unify by culture group anyway. Failing that, I might make it my goal to back unifications wherever possible, although India's already halfway there.

What a mighty and most spectacular AAR! I am so pleased that you managed to finish it. This was a great AAR, and I enjoyed it a lot! :) Thanks for having the patience to persevere until the end!

I had hoped I'd managed to hide the fact that running a global empire was becoming a bit of a grind. Was it that obvious? :D


Anyway, since people have asked about the conversion, here're a few screenies - think of this as a BAR.

So far I've managed to get Japan to roughly the same territorial extent as she is at 1821. I'm sure we can write off any slight border changes as the result of better mapping or inter-game arbitration:
japanstart.jpg


As you'll note, Japan's the only country that I've changed (with the exception of Gotland, which I added as a test). The task ahead is pretty massive, as almost every country has to be tweaked and quite a few new ones added. I'll probably end up having to change more than 1,000 provinces by the end of this. I have written a little VBA script to help, but identifying them is what will take ages.
japanesecolonies.jpg


And here we can see that Japan is already the second greatest power. GB won't stay where it is as this is historic 1836 Britain, which owns large chunks of India. I'm not sure what to do about distribution of factories (it strikes me Japan should have some), or prestige, but it looks like I won't have many worries militarily.

For now I've set Japan as a Prussian constitutionalist system. That seemed a bit closer to EU3's meaning of constitutional monarchy than a fully-blown HM Government, and it gives me something to shoot for.
powersjapan.jpg


Anyway, thanks again for all your kind comments. Watch this space!