• Crusader Kings III Available Now!

    The realm rejoices as Paradox Interactive announces the launch of Crusader Kings III, the latest entry in the publisher’s grand strategy role-playing game franchise. Advisors may now jockey for positions of influence and adversaries should save their schemes for another day, because on this day Crusader Kings III can be purchased on Steam, the Paradox Store, and other major online retailers.


    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

Paragonfilmgoat

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All seems to moving right along however the about the intrigue I've been giving some thought to it and might suggest that we invent a system of retainers as well to do stuff in and around the city. The system should focus on just a simple cost and profit model like 1 Spy = 1 intrigue action and if the person effected has the opposing retainer say Eunuch to defend against this then this action fails and the other player loses the spy and the defender keeps his retainer. Gaining a retainer could be tied to political action (say voting, offering spectacle for the senate, or providing political favors) or it could be tied to attendance and time. To keep it simple I suggest a rock, paper, and scissors method to keep things relatively balanced. Also I think it would be wise for us to standardize the "Secrets" category of our house so that instead of false accusation and making up of other's stories we'll put down our senators secrets so that we can RP appropriately. One thing that hasn't been really clarified is how the senate, the dynastoi, the council, the emperor, and all the eunuchs work lore wise and gameplay (both in forum and game) wise with each other and conflicts going on between them. So if you have any ideas on that that would be great.


NO! Kingjerkera no spy system :ninja: I can barley keep all the rules and everything straight as it is man :wacko:

Also to the new senators welcome to the party, and it looks like we have even more merchants !yay! the navigators(blues) grow stronger by the day.
 

KingJerkera

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We're going to need some form of system dealing with intrigue. I don't practically care how sophisticated it is as long as it allows blackmail, assignation, and corruption so that we can perform politics.;) However it could be made more simple by a system of points that one could spend. Honestly I also think that the faction meetings should happen on reddit so that this AAR won't go into the thousands. Which it probably will despite our scheming.
 

Andre Massena

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NO! Kingjerkera no spy system :ninja: I can barley keep all the rules and everything straight as it is man :wacko:

Also to the new senators welcome to the party, and it looks like we have even more merchants !yay! the navigators(blues) grow stronger by the day.
Enough of the merchants and explorers! We're surrounded by an unstoppable and evil empire and these fools think they'll never attack us and will be content to trade with us!
 

sermokala

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I was wondering what you were planning with the handeling of releaseable nations? Releasing tunnis and lesser Egypt as marches and growing them would probably be highly effective with the art of war changes.
 

LordSolar

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How many cores of releasable nations are left in the xenos empire and in the horde?
 

McGrey

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Enough of the merchants and explorers! We're surrounded by an unstoppable and evil empire and these fools think they'll never attack us and will be content to trade with us!
Ah, with free trade and capitalism the cold war was won (amongst other things we don't want to mention because it weakens my argument considerably)! So don't fear the merchants!

And welcome to the new Senators!
 

CzokletMuss

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We're going to need some form of system dealing with intrigue. I don't practically care how sophisticated it is as long as it allows blackmail, assignation, and corruption so that we can perform politics.;) However it could be made more simple by a system of points that one could spend. Honestly I also think that the faction meetings should happen on reddit so that this AAR won't go into the thousands. Which it probably will despite our scheming.
NO! Kingjerkera no spy system :ninja: I can barley keep all the rules and everything straight as it is man :wacko:
Also to the new senators welcome to the party, and it looks like we have even more merchants !yay! the navigators(blues) grow stronger by the day.
All seems to moving right along however the about the intrigue I've been giving some thought to it and might suggest that we invent a system of retainers as well to do stuff in and around the city. The system should focus on just a simple cost and profit model like 1 Spy = 1 intrigue action and if the person effected has the opposing retainer say Eunuch to defend against this then this action fails and the other player loses the spy and the defender keeps his retainer. Gaining a retainer could be tied to political action (say voting, offering spectacle for the senate, or providing political favors) or it could be tied to attendance and time. To keep it simple I suggest a rock, paper, and scissors method to keep things relatively balanced. Also I think it would be wise for us to standardize the "Secrets" category of our house so that instead of false accusation and making up of other's stories we'll put down our senators secrets so that we can RP appropriately. One thing that hasn't been really clarified is how the senate, the dynastoi, the council, the emperor, and all the eunuchs work lore wise and gameplay (both in forum and game) wise with each other and conflicts going on between them. So if you have any ideas on that that would be great.
I can say that - for now - there is zero chance for such system to be introduced. This is interactive AAR, not Dungeons&Dragons, so let's not make things too complicated. Besides, good legislation (and every set of rules basically) should be an answer to a real problem or challenge. I didn't want to introduce faction from the start in the first place but after seeing how they were de facto created either way I changed my mind. What I mean by this is that it's better to regulate what's already there than to create complicated system on paper and force everyone to use it. Plus beetwen modding exported save, preparing next Dev Diary and writing next "Pro Fide" chapter I don't have that much free time left, so I don't want to spend it on preparing rules concerning schemes and plots.

So to sum it up: there won't be any system like this in this year. Perhaps in January I'll introduce something somewhat related to this but this depends on whether it's gonna be needed in the first place. We really don't need more rules than absolutely necessary.
As seen in the preview session, there's already consensus for Exploration quickly, if not the very first idea group, and the new people are certainly not going to change that dynamic. I really don't see much point in having it at all, unless you want it as the very first idea. Otherwise pointless.

I would exchange it for something regarding production or trade, probably +10% efficiency for one of them.

Alternatively, I think it would be good to have something like -5 years of nationalism, which would be a powerful, rewarding finisher. It would also come at the point at which large chunks of land can be taken with the ADM efficiency boosts kicking in.

I like that idea the best actually.
This is indeed a fine idea :) Unless someone else has a better idea, I may change Roman Ambition to what you suggested.
I would however prefer to keep the "can hire explorers..." bonus just in case. And BTW taking Exploration as the first idea would be a huge, huge mistake IMHO.

I was wondering what you were planning with the handeling of releaseable nations? Releasing tunnis and lesser Egypt as marches and growing them would probably be highly effective with the art of war changes.
No plans so far but yes, some nations could be used as marches effectively.
How many cores of releasable nations are left in the xenos empire and in the horde?
Basically none. Converter works like this (I'm using province nr 94 - Luxemburg - as an example):

Code:
owner = AZT
controller = AZT
add_core = AZT
culture = aztek
religion = aztec_reformed
citysize = 2000
discovered_by = eastern
discovered_by = western
discovered_by = muslim
discovered_by = ottoman
discovered_by = LIT
discovered_by = HUN
discovered_by = Z22
discovered_by = Z30
1444.11.11 = {
	hre = no
	remove_core = SCA
	remove_core = SWE
	remove_core = DAN
	remove_core = NOR
	remove_core = FIN
	remove_core = FIN
	remove_core = FIN
	remove_core = SHL
	remove_core = SHL
	remove_core = GOT
	remove_core = GOT
	remove_core = BYZ
	remove_core = BUL
	remove_core = CRO
	remove_core = CRO
	remove_core = GRE
	remove_core = SER
	remove_core = HUN
	remove_core = TUR
	remove_core = ACH
	remove_core = ATH
	remove_core = ATH
	remove_core = BOS
	remove_core = BOS
	remove_core = CRT
	remove_core = CYP
	remove_core = CYP
	remove_core = EPI
	remove_core = EPI
	remove_core = KNI
	remove_core = TRA
	remove_core = WAL
	remove_core = NAX
	remove_core = RAG
	remove_core = GBR
	remove_core = ENG
	remove_core = IRE
	remove_core = SCO
	remove_core = WLS
	remove_core = CRN
	remove_core = CRN
	remove_core = LAN
	remove_core = LAN
	remove_core = YOR
	remove_core = YOR
	remove_core = NOL
	remove_core = NOL
	remove_core = CNN
	remove_core = LEI
	remove_core = MNS
	remove_core = TYR
	remove_core = CNN
	remove_core = LEI
	remove_core = LIT
	remove_core = POL
	remove_core = KRA
	remove_core = KRA
	remove_core = MAZ
	remove_core = PRU
	remove_core = KUR
	remove_core = TEU
	remove_core = DNZ
	remove_core = RIG
	remove_core = FRA
	remove_core = FRA
	remove_core = BRI
	remove_core = BRI
	remove_core = ALS
	remove_core = AMG
	remove_core = AUV
	remove_core = AUV
	remove_core = BUR
	remove_core = BUR
	remove_core = CHP
	remove_core = COR
	remove_core = DAU
	remove_core = FOI
	remove_core = NEV
	remove_core = NRM
	remove_core = ORL
	remove_core = ORL
	remove_core = PRO
	remove_core = PRO
	remove_core = TOU
	remove_core = TOU
	remove_core = BER
	remove_core = AVI
	remove_core = ANH
	remove_core = BAD
	remove_core = BAD
	remove_core = BAV
	remove_core = BAV
	remove_core = BOH
	remove_core = BOH
	remove_core = BRA
	remove_core = BRA
	remove_core = BRE
	remove_core = BRU
	remove_core = GER
	remove_core = HAB
	remove_core = HAM
	remove_core = HLR
	remove_core = LOR
	remove_core = LUN
	remove_core = MAI
	remove_core = MEI
	remove_core = MEI
	remove_core = MKL
	remove_core = MUN
	remove_core = OLD
	remove_core = POM
	remove_core = POM
	remove_core = SAX
	remove_core = SIL
	remove_core = SLZ
	remove_core = THU
	remove_core = THU
	remove_core = TIR
	remove_core = TIR
	remove_core = TRI
	remove_core = ULM
	remove_core = WBG
	remove_core = WUR
	remove_core = ARA
	remove_core = ARA
	remove_core = CAS
	remove_core = CAS
	remove_core = GRA
	remove_core = GRA
	remove_core = NAV
	remove_core = NAV
	remove_core = NAV
	remove_core = POR
	remove_core = SPA
	remove_core = GAL
	remove_core = GAL
	remove_core = AQU
	remove_core = FER
	remove_core = FER
	remove_core = GEN
	remove_core = GEN
	remove_core = ITA
	remove_core = ITA
	remove_core = MAN
	remove_core = MOD
	remove_core = MOD
	remove_core = NAP
	remove_core = PAP
	remove_core = PAR
	remove_core = PIS
	remove_core = PIS
	remove_core = PIS
	remove_core = SAR
	remove_core = SAV
	remove_core = SIC
	remove_core = SIC
	remove_core = SIE
	remove_core = TUS
	remove_core = URB
	remove_core = VEN
	remove_core = VEN
	remove_core = VEN
	remove_core = BRB
	remove_core = BRB
	remove_core = FLA
	remove_core = GEL
	remove_core = GEL
	remove_core = HAI
	remove_core = HOL
	remove_core = HOL
	remove_core = LIE
	remove_core = LUX
	remove_core = LUX
	remove_core = FRI
	remove_core = ARM
	remove_core = ARM
	remove_core = CRI
	remove_core = CRI
	remove_core = GEO
	remove_core = GOL
	remove_core = MOS
	remove_core = MOS
	remove_core = NOV
	remove_core = NOV
	remove_core = PSK
	remove_core = RUS
	remove_core = RYA
	remove_core = RYA
	remove_core = TVE
	remove_core = TVE
	remove_core = YAR
	remove_core = YAR
	remove_core = PLT
	remove_core = PLT
	remove_core = PRM
	remove_core = PRM
	remove_core = PRM
	remove_core = OMA
	remove_core = HED
	remove_core = AYD
	remove_core = CND
	remove_core = IRQ
	remove_core = IRQ
	remove_core = IRQ
	remove_core = KAR
	remove_core = SYR
	remove_core = SYR
	remove_core = SYR
	remove_core = TRE
	remove_core = TRE
	remove_core = SRU
	remove_core = MEN
	remove_core = MAM
	remove_core = FEZ
	remove_core = FEZ
	remove_core = TRP
	remove_core = TRP
	remove_core = ALG
	remove_core = MOR
	remove_core = KHI
	remove_core = KHI
	remove_core = KHO
	remove_core = KHO
	remove_core = PER
	remove_core = PER
	remove_core = TIM
	remove_core = MAL
	remove_core = MAL
	remove_core = MAL
	remove_core = MAL
	remove_core = KHA
	remove_core = BAL
	remove_core = HSA
	remove_core = BAR
	remove_core = SMO
	remove_core = SMO
	remove_core = NZH
	remove_core = KOJ
	remove_core = KOJ
	remove_core = KOJ
	remove_core = JOM
	remove_core = HAH
	remove_core = ROM
	remove_core = ISR
	remove_core = TEM
	remove_core = SWI
	remove_core = GUY
	remove_core = ALE
	remove_core = UTR
	remove_core = EFR
	remove_core = HES
	remove_core = KOL
	remove_core = KLE
	remove_core = AAC
	remove_core = PAL
	remove_core = ANS
	remove_core = MAG
	remove_core = LAU
	remove_core = STY
	remove_core = MLO
	remove_core = MOE
	remove_core = NOG
	remove_core = AST
	remove_core = KAZ
	remove_core = KZH
	remove_core = MUG
}
1444.11.11 = {
	owner = AZT
	controller = AZT
	culture = aztek
	religion = aztec_reformed
}
Also, I like the idea of specific characters getting titles and positions. Who better to be an explorer than Christoforo Columbo himself?
Coupled with Conquistador Hernan Cortez, the Aztecs won't stand a chance!
Explorer Columbo, conquistador Cortez and general Smallpox - the Genocidal Trio!

I will join the blues and
You may join factions during the First Session and not earlier.


Also it seems that Timurids Ideas are going to be changed in "Art of War":
They both shared one ideagroup previously, now they have two separate.

Timurids
Traditions
Income from Vassals: +25.0% Years of Nationalism: -5
  1. Timurid Architecture: Prestige Decay: -2.0%
  2. The Mantle of the Great Khan: Cavalry Combat Ability: +20.0%
  3. Unleash the Tiger: Cost of Reducing War Exhaustion: -10.0%
  4. Chagatai Literature: Yearly Legitimacy: +1.00
  5. Timurid Renaissance: Technology Cost: -5.0%
  6. Control of the Silk Road: Domestic Trade Power: +25.0%
  7. Build the Largest Mosque in the world: Yearly Prestige: +1.00
Ambition
Discipline: +5.0%



Mughals
Traditions
Cavalry Combat Ability: +20.0% & Core-Creation Cost: -25.0%
  1. An Indian Padishah: Tolerance of Heathens: +3.00 & Religious Unity: +35.0%
  2. The Jagir and Mansabdari Systems: Discipline: +5.0%
  3. Control over the Clergy: Cost of Reducing War Exhaustion: -10.0%
  4. Ibadat Khana - House of Worship: Idea Cost: -10.0%
  5. Zabt System: National Tax Modifier: +10.0%
  6. Mughal Architecture: Yearly Prestige: +1.00
  7. Fatawa-i-Alamgiri: Stability Cost Modifier: -10.0%
Ambition
Technology Cost: -5.0%
 
Last edited:

LordSolar

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The loss of their religious unity idea will really hurt the Timurids here I think
 

CzokletMuss

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Indeed - I think I'll give them +20% religious unity instead of vassal income bonus. After all Timur and his sons managed to keep the realm together for decades, it would be very silly to see it collapse out of nowhere before 1450.

***

I also decided that there won't be more than 24 Senators. Twenty four is a lot and it easily divides in two, three, four, six, eight and twelve parts so it seems like a perfect number.

[size=+2]This means there are only 8 seats in the Imperial Senate left.
[/size]
 

alamking

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I really don't think the Timurids will fall apart. I recently played a timurids game and had only minor trouble During ruler death. I think the hardest part for the timurids will be reforming there government
 

Undead Martyr

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I would however prefer to keep the "can hire explorers..." bonus just in case. And BTW taking Exploration as the first idea would be a huge, huge mistake IMHO.
Well it's the only diplo-group acceptable to the militarists. Dirty merchants are a fifth column!
I'd recommend replacing the morale penalty for the religious group with a slight discipline malus; if anything they should get a bonus to morale/manpower recovery, fanatics make good cannon fodder.:p
 

Attalus

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Even as the strongest supporter of exploration, I understand it's not good to choose it at first :p
So militaries could have my vote, if they promise to support exploration when the time comes ;)
 

KingJerkera

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Okay about that. So how will the lore be handled? Also can we expect rules concerning titles for next session or will we see that at some later time?
 

ParrotGuy

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Even as the strongest supporter of exploration, I understand it's not good to choose it at first :p
So militaries could have my vote, if they promise to support exploration when the time comes ;)
Yep, Anastasios may come along.
I suggest that in the next Senate session there will be voting on the specific ideas (not groups)- it seems like we may get a consensus. If there will be no majority for any idea, maby the idea with the biggest amount of cotes will be a recommendation to the Emperor, just like in the tutorial session?
 

CzokletMuss

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DEV DIARY 4
IMPERIUM ROMANUM



Salve, citizens. There are only seven days before the release of „Art of War” and – hopefully – less than ten days before this After Action Report can finally begin, so it's about time for another Dev Diary. Today at last we shall take a closer look at the protagonist of the EU4 campaign, the Imperium Romanum itself!

[size=+2]
IN THE GRIM DARKNESS OF THE DYING CHRISTENDOM
THERE IS ONLY WAR[/size]

[video=youtube_share;a-ox70P3LZw]http://youtu.be/a-ox70P3LZw[/video]​

It is the end of the 7th millennium since the creation of the world. For more than a thousand years the Imperium Romanum has stood, ruled from the Sacred Palace in Konstantinoupolis. Since the days of Saint Markos Isapostolos the Angeloi have sat on the Throne, preserving his everlasting legacy. His descendant Markos III Angelos is Basileus Basileon by the Grace of God, Caesar Augustus of the Romaioi and all Men, Autokrator of the Holy Church and Protector of the Christendom. He is the lord of the innumerable lands by the will of Iesus Kristos and the might of his Imperial Army.

Mighty fleets cross the wide seas and uncounted Roman soldiers give battle in Emperor's name on far lands. Greatest among his warriors are the Kataphraktoi, elite heavy cavalry unmatched on the battlefield. Their comrads in arms are legion: the professional soldiers of Tagmata and brave levies and conscripts of Themata, the ever-vigilant Athanatoi and battle-hardened Auxilia from Christian Kingdoms to name only a few. But for all their multitudes, they are barely enough to defend the Imperium from endless hordes of xenoi, barbarians and heretics.

To live in these times is to be one amongst millions, it is to live in a collapsing, warring continent filled with violence and hatred. These are the tales of these times. Forget the promise of progress and understanding for much is forgotten, never to be relearned. Soulless xenoi have conquered countless lands, rivaled in size only by those controlled by the Horde and sons of Timur, bringing untold destruction upon the Christendom. In the ashes of the old world the Imperium still stands, its ever-expanding borders barely outpacing the rate of decay of its immense body. Unimaginable horrors hidden in the mists of the Far West are waiting to be discovered and unleashed upon surviving Christians.

But what lies beyond the uncharted seas may be the only salvation of the Imperium exhausted by centuries of never-ending war – or it may be its undoing. For there is no peace amongst Men nor hope for victory, only an eternity of carnage and slaughter, and the laughter of dark gods.
Apart from this (well-known to you I imagine) introduction we won't concentrate on flavor and history this time and we shall jump straight to my situation at the start of the game on 11 November 1444. Let's not waste any time than – sit comfortable, play the theme of the Imperium appropriately called „The Angeloi Protect” and behold, for the Christendom is in dire straits.


As you can see, the Imperium is surrounded by enemies who absolutely hate my guts. By this I mean relations capped at -200 because that's when the scale ends. The patches of yellow on the ocean of red hate are either Horde's vassals, isolationist Mali or British heretics. Only Poland has a distinct tint of green thanks to alliance and royal marriage with me. Clearly there won't be much use of diplomacy here – unless I create someone with whom I can have positive relationship (I'm looking at you, vassals and client states).


On the other hand, being in the very center of the known world has its benefits – I can expand in every direction. Here on a diplomatic map you can see that the Imperium has lots and lots of cores, mainly in Aegyptus (conquered by Timurids), Syria (conquered by Timurids) and Africa (conquered by Xenoi). Why? I created all possible kingdom-tier titles in CK2 which were not in de jure Byzantium Roman Empire and converter gives cores from de jure provinces to the owner of the title. But expansion is not the only option – perhaps it would be wise to abandon Caucasus to give both the Horde and the Timurids steppe horde CB on each other...


Conquest however would certainly increase disorder within the Imperium seeing how practically all provinces are dominated by heretics or worse. Be it worshippers of the Dark Xenoi Powers, Sky-Father Tengri or false god Allah and his false prophet, the Imperium must find a way to „deal” with masses of heathens before expanding.


On top of religious tensions there is also issue of tolerated cultures. Despite my best efforts in CK2 there are still dozens of provinces where commoners practice foreign customs and use foreign lenguages instead of a proper Greek or Latin. This also should be dealt with in one way or another. Considering all of this it shouldn't be surprising that even at the very start of the campaign on 11 November 1444 there are pretty big problems with revolt risk across the Imperium.


Situation may seem to be under control but may no mistake – loss of stability combined with war exhaustion can cause rebellions to pop out everywhere. And if you think it's not a big problem since Orthodoxy give me lower stability cost I have a bad news for you: with all the triggered modifiers Imperium has (more on this below) going from 0 stability to 1 stability can cost almost 300 ADM. Ouch.


Economically Imperium is pretty strong – I would even dare to call it an economical powerhouse if not for the fact that Xenoi Xolal has more than twice as much basetax as I do. Still, thanks to the geographical position of the Imperium revenue from trade may easily surpass this from taxes and production. As you can see, the southern provinces are all in red: that's because of a nasty Distant Overseas penalty which triggered because I don't have a land connection to them.

That's about it – overall, starting position of the Imperium is challenging but it's not desperate. You will have the chance to learn about all the details in Prologue when the AAR finally begins and later in special State Of The World updates.

State Of The World updates
These updates are going to be unique for several reasons. First of all, there will be only a couple of them – I plan to release five of them to be more precise. Each of them will be dedicated to describe the state of the (known) world on 1st January of the following years: 1450, 1520, 1620, 1720 and finally 1820. Second of all, I will include information from ledger in them. Normally I won't give you the ledger data concerning other states than the Imperium Romanum at all, but these updates are going to be exception. Even the Senators will be limited in this case, despite the Senate hearings and (planned) access to various reports concerning religion, trade, budget etc.

Speaking of which, let's take a closer look at the interface (all data from 11th November 1444 before the first monthly „tick”, with armies and navy spawned by converter and with no intervention from me, like moving merchants around etc.):




What EU4 players probably already noticed, you may see that the government type of the Imperium is nothing like the vanilla „Empire”. That's because it's a modified version of Dominate Empire from Purple Phoenix Arises (PPA) and it provides me with nice +10% land morale and +1 yearly legitimacy bonuses. The government of the Imperium can be changed but only using special decisions from PPA modified by me. By the way, I won't explain everything to you in these dev diaries because – even if I wanted – it's simply not possible due to huge amount of changes introduced by PPA and my own modifications. Plus I don't want to spoil your surprise when you find out about some things.


But the imperial government can't be described by two words - „Dominate Empire” is just a name and what hides behind it is a vast and complex bureaucracy. How complex? Since (like in the real world) the Imperium is more than a thousand years old there is no clear and easily comprehensible system like the ones introduced by modern constitutions. Instead this is a chaotic mess of various institutions, offices, titles and honors, with countless officials occupied by plotting and scheming against each other. Turf wars and competition for power, resources and Emperor's favor are a daily bread for Roman administration. The most important among imperial instutions are:
  • Sacrum Palatium (Sacred Palace also known as the Great Palace);
  • Imperial Council;
  • Scrinium Barbarorum (Bureau of Barbarians);
  • Aerarium (The Imperial Treasury);
  • Imperial Senate;
  • The Holy Church;
  • Great Pandidakterion;
  • Eparchate of Konstantinoupolis;
  • Imperial Army and its Themata;
  • Imperial Navy and its Themata;
  • Tagmata;
and countless others logothesia and sekreta (departaments) or organizations like agentes in rebus, not to mention administrative themata, provinces, separate fleets, mercenary units, courts of law etc. Luckily not all of this is going to be represtented in game. As I already annouced, the Factions in the Imperial Senate are the exception.


As per my first draft, they are going to provide various modifiers to the Imperium:

1. modified MIL faction (name - „The Eagles” aka the Red Demes; close ties with Imperial Army)
Good modifiers:
  • big bonus: +1 yearly army tradition
  • medium bonuses: -5% core creation cost, -0,01 monthly war exhaustion, +10% land morale, +10% siege ability
Bad modifiers:
  • worst malus: -1 colonist (anti-DIP)
  • medium maluses: -15% navy morale (anti-DIP), +15% stability cost (anti-ADM)
  • cost malus: +15% land maintanance

2. modified ADM faction: (name - „The Faithful” aka the White Demes; close ties with Sacred Palace)
Good modifiers:
  • big bonus: -20% stability cost
  • medium bonuses: +2% missionary strength, +10% tax income, +10% defensivness, +2 possible advisor
Bad modifiers:
  • worst maluses: -15% land morale (anti-MIL), -30 global colonist growth (anti-DIP)
  • medium malus: +10% tech cost (general)
  • cost malus: +25% advisor cost

3. modified DIP faction: (name - „The Navigators” aka the Blue Demes; close ties with Imperial Navy)
Good modifiers:
  • best bonus: -10% idea cost
  • medium bonuses: +25 global colonist growth, +1 diplomatic relations, + 10% trade efficiency, +10% navy morale
Bad modifiers:
  • worst malus: -5% discipline (anti-MIL)
  • medium maluses: +2% army tradition decay (anti-MIL,), -3% missionary strength (anti-ADM)
  • cost malus: +15% navy maintanance
There are more however – after all, the Senate is just one of the most powerful instutions in the Imperium. And among them arguably the most important is the Imperial Council which serves as a quasi-cabinet of the whole government. It consists of the top leaders of the executive branch (if this term can be used at all in this context) like Megas Domestikos (commander-in-chief of the Imperial Army), Megas Droungarios (commander-in-chief of the Imperial Navy) or Megas Logothetes (head of all other logothetes and their departaments, kinda like Prime Minister in modern democracies) as its permanent members. The Emperor however may nominate officials to the Imperial Council as he pleases:


Code:
# PALACE OFFICIALS

# Parakoimomenos - ADM FACTION
byz_parakoimomenos = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]diplomatic_annexation_cost = -0.05[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]stability_cost_modifier = 0.05[/COLOR]
}

# Protovestiarios - ADM FACTION
byz_protovestiarios = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]prestige = 1[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]stability_cost_modifier = 0.05[/COLOR]
}

# Pinkernes - DIP FACTION
byz_pinkernes = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]global_spy_defence = 0.10[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]stability_cost_modifier = 0.05[/COLOR]
}

# Kanikleios - DIP FACTION
byz_kanikleios = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]relations_decay_of_me = 0.10[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]stability_cost_modifier = 0.05[/COLOR]
}

# Protospatharios - MIL FACTION
byz_trapezes = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]unjustified_demands = -0.10[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]stability_cost_modifier = 0.05[/COLOR]
}

Code:
# MILITARY OFFICIALS

# Domestikos - MIL FACTION
byz_domestikos = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]discipline = 0.025[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]global_tax_modifier = -0.03[/COLOR]
}

# Strategos - MIL FACTION
byz_strategos = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]land_morale = 0.05[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]global_tax_modifier = -0.03[/COLOR]
}

# Protostrator - MIL FACTION
byz_protostrator = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]cavalry_power = 0.05[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]global_tax_modifier = -0.03[/COLOR]
}

# Droungarious - DIP FACTION
byz_megasdoux = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]naval_morale = 0.05[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]global_tax_modifier = -0.03[/COLOR]
}

# Ethnarches - ADM FACTION
byz_ethnarches = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]merc_maintenance_modifier = -0.10[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]global_tax_modifier = -0.03[/COLOR]
}

Code:
# FINANCIAL OFFICIALS

# Protasekretis - DIP FACTION
byz_protasekretis = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]global_colonial_growth = 10[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]global_trade_goods_size = -0.05[/COLOR]
}

# Logothetes tou Genikou - ADM FACTION
byz_genikou = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]global_tax_modifier = 0.07[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]global_trade_goods_size = -0.05[/COLOR]
}

# Logothetes tou Dromou - DIP FACTION
byz_dromou = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]envoy_travel_time = -0.15[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]global_trade_goods_size = -0.05[/COLOR]
}

# Logothetes tou Stratiotikou - MIL FACTION
byz_stratiotikou = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]recover_army_morale_speed = 0.05[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]global_trade_goods_size = -0.05[/COLOR]
}

# Sakellarios - ADM FACTION
byz_sakellarios = {
	[COLOR="#00FF00"]interest = -1[/COLOR]
	[COLOR="#FF0000"]global_trade_goods_size = -0.05[/COLOR]
}
As you can see, every official is assigned to one of the Factions but not because the Senate can influence who gets nominated by the Emperor. Quite the contrary: the Emperor may nominate the officials freely or he may made a deal with, for instance, Military Faction leader – vote for what I want this time and I'll nominate to the Imperial Council the official who is going to represent your interests. This is introduced to allow the Emperor (me) to meddle in Senate affair and try to bribe influence the Factions. Of course the Emperor may just ignore the Senate and nominate whoever he wants but this will depend on the Emperor. It'll be worth to get official supported by your Faction to the Council though – bonuses which they provide will last as long as the Emperor lives, which means you may mitigate the obviously wrong policies introduced by, say, Administrative Faction by having protasekretis in the Council who provides +10 global colonist growth bonus.

But there is more.


PPA provides me with a bunch of triggered modifiers as an addition to the vanilla ones. I had to tweak all of them, some in such a way that I basically created my own but still what dorimi did was a basis of my changes.


Some of this modifiers are based on what happend in the first part of this AAR (that is, in „This Is Madness” during CK2 campaign) and are mostly for flavor. On the other hand, other modifiers are more down to earth (BTW can you say „down to earth” in Englsh in this context?).


But most importantly, majority of this modifiers are, well, not nice. I want to have a challenge during the campaign after all and – as you probably know – the greatest threat to every empire was not lurking beyond its borders. It was above all else internal instability.


Of course in case of this setting there are blasphemous horrors hiding in the darkness surrounding the Imperium. Soulless and daemon-worshipping xenoi, innumerable hordes of Mongol barbarians, bloodthirsty ghazis fighting in the name of Islam, greedy and corrupt Pisans – indeed there are a lot of enemies of the Imperium. But there is still chance, however small, to make the grand vision of Saint Markos come true. If the xenoi and barbarians could be defeated... If the ancient limes of the Imperium can be restored... If it can be done perhaps not all is lost.

Perhaps in the end this is the greatest gift Saint Markos gave to his children. The first bitter taste of that terrible illusion: hope.


***

Next time: finishing touches to the converted game and changes made to two gameplay-changing mods I'm going to use, Purple Phoenix Arises (by dorimi) and Feudal Factions (by Alex). Since next weekend is after the release date of „Art of War” we shall also find out whether my exported save is going to be compatible with it in the first place.
 
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TheAnguishedOne

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You do love giving yourself a handicap. Still, I have faith you can succeed. If you do succeed in retaking those missing cities, you'll have a much easier time. Of course, reaching a place like London will take some work. I focus on London because then you would be near Western societies, providing an excellent opportunity...