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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

Kapt Torbjorn

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Epic warupdate with epic music.
Absolutely brilliant.

This is one of the best AAR's that I am currently reading, and that ought to mean something. ;)

Good gameplay also. :cool:

That is indeed quite the praise, coming from one such as yourself Enewald :)

-begins writing next chapter-
 

cthulhu

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You seem to be a very skilled EU-player Kapt Torbjörn. I reallt enjoy your AAR. Please update soon. I want to know where Transylvania is expanding next... :cool:
 

Kapt Torbjorn

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Part 1 - Chapter 10 – The Emperor has no Cores

Emissaries from foreign courts flooded into Transylvania after peace was signed with the Ottomans, praising King István for his total victory over the Turks. He also received a personal letter from the Pope (this time a real one), congratulating him in his triumph over the enemies of Christendom.

It was a bittersweet victory for Transylvania, however. The Turks had been beaten back, their expansion checked, but it came at a great cost. Thousands of families all across Transylvania had dwindled in numbers, as sons and fathers rode to war against the Turks. King István himself had not escaped the war unharmed; a wound he had taken along his ribs refused to heal, and would re-open intermittently. Physcians arrived from all across Christendom, some even coming from the heathen lands to the East, all of them trying every possible way to heal the battle wound. The wound would not close, and secretly King István admitted to his wife that he knew it would be the death of him.

Administration of the state did not halt for the King, and certainly not the progression of the world. Rebels still needed to be squashed, funding for the army found, and research into new technology pursued. And there was still the ever present elephant in the room of Europe, the Golden Horde. The Horde had declared multiple Jihads against the Russian principalities, crushing Muscowy, and beating back the Princes of Novgorod. The Rus could no longer stand alone against such a giant, and a number of countries in Europe began discussing a unified push by the nations of Christendom to expel the Golden Horde from the lands of the Rus. Deliberations and discussions continued for years, until it was finally decided that the alliance would strike when the Horde was at its weakest, caught in the grip of a succession war, with their lands over-run with rebels. Even still, it would be a very hard war.

BsCIf.gif

The Western borders of the Golden Horde, September, 1445

The crusade against the Moors was still active, called for by Castille some 20 years ago. Christendom had not truly responded, as it was simply seen as a Castillian war. However, King István knew that declaring war on the Moors would bring a boost to the economy, and so in June of 1446 the declaration of war was sent. Transylvania’s allies all answered the call, but everyone simply sat at home. Messages were received from the Pope again, calling for a swift destruction of Morroco, but King István simply responded with a letter stating that it would happen in due time. The Pope was not pleased.

The Bohemians, still standing as the Holy Roman Emperor, decided that now was the time to strike again at the Austrians. The Austrians had fed the Bohemian king false information, stating that the main Austrian army had left the homeland to go fight in North Africa against the Moors, and so Bohemia declared war against the Austrians in June of 1446, bringing with them quite a long list of allies to the fight.

o669M.png

The Call to Arms from Austria, June, 1446

Transylvania naturally answered the call, the memory of Austria’s noble sacrifice in the crusade against the Turks still fresh in King István’s mind. The Transylvanian army was mobilized, and began moving towards Mazovia. The plan was relatively simple; Transylvania would deal with Mazovia, Austria with Bohemia. Brandenburg, which came to Austria’s aid, drew the short straw. Their goal was to distract the Bohemians so that a quick peace could be resolved, as a drawn out war against the Bohemians would end in disaster, due to the massive manpower reserves and armies that the Holy Roman Emperor could draw upon.

B7oco.png

The Austrian-Bohemian war of 1446

Everything went off as planned. The Transylvanian army crossed the border at Ersekujvar into Mazovia, and engaged the Mazovian army. King István led the army, even in his weakened state, giving the soldiers a huge boost to their morale. István was fast becoming a legend in Transylvania, having catapulted the small country to international fame. Here was the man who had led the armies of Tranyslvania to victory in a war that had seemed doomed to failure at the start. The Mazovians couldn’t stand against such an army, and were decimated. They lost over 7,000 men in the first engagement of the war, and fled to their capital of Warszawa, where the Transylvanians pursued them and destroyed them.

The Austrians were faring better than expected to the West as well. A number of the smaller Bohemian armies had been knocked out of the war, and the armies of Austria were steadily advancing into the Emperor’s lands. Brandenburg was slowly being destroyed to the North though, as the Bohemian juggernaut swept across their lands, razing cities and destroying what meager resistance the Germans could muster against them. Brandenburg was forced to sue for peace with the Bohemians in February of 1447, signing the humiliating Treaty of Berlin. The Bohemian army began moving south to deal with the Austrians, and for a moment in time it seemed that the war would turn against Transylvania and its ally.

1s6xu.png

The Treaty of Berlin, February, 1447

The Bohemian armies were marching south post haste, now that their northern frontier was secured. However, a diplomat within the court of Bohemia had sent peace feelers to the Austrians during this time. Normally, such a move would be meaningless unless it was from the Crown, however this move began a wave of uncertainty among the peasantry in Bohemia. All they knew was that their kingdom was seeking peace with the Austrians, and why would they want peace if the war could be won? The state of affairs within Bohemia rapidly crumbled because of this tiny move, and was compounded by the total Austrian victory at the Battle of Ostmarch, where a 12,000 strong Austrian army had broken a Bohemian army nearly twice its size. Facing rising dissent and the possibility of other regional powers attacking the homeland, the king of Bohemia, Oldřich I, was forced to sue for peace with the Austrians, and signed the Treaty of Breslau on May 26th, 1447.

AoU7c.jpg

The Battle of Ostmarch, March, 1447

aGogg.png

The Treaty of Breslau, May, 1447

The Transylvanian army returned home from Mazovia, but King István received a call to arms from their ally Greece, who was under attack from the Ottomans. István could not respond, however. The Transylvanian army was still recovering from the war with Bohemia, and the people were exhausted with the constant warfare. Transylvania had no choice but to decline, and watch Greece get absorbed again into Turkish hands.

5tuNH.png

Greece is annexed by the Ottomans, July, 1448

Messengers were received by István, notifying him of new developments in the west. Bohemia had annexed their vassal, Mazovia, growing their holdings in Europe by a sizeable amount. Farther west, the Kingdom of Castille took control of the Crown of Aragon, inter-twining the kingdoms, to be ruled as one.

luEgR.gif

The Bohemian annexation of Mazovia, November, 1449

dLqOJ.gif

The Iberian Peninsula, November, 1449
 
Last edited:

JDMS

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I assume Erz was ceded to the Austrians? Another war where Transylvania gains nothing. :(
Great work.
 

cthulhu

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Transylvania better get back into shape soon. The Sublime Porte will soon try subjugate them, now that Greece is once again under the Ottoman yoke. :mad:
 

Kapt Torbjorn

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I assume Erz was ceded to the Austrians? Another war where Transylvania gains nothing. :(
Great work.
Aye. However, considering Transylvania took 1/3rd of the Ottomans territory during the Crusade, I'd reckon it's a fair deal :rofl:

Ugh, the Otto's are still feisty while the Christians war.
Quite the opportunistic buggers, eh? They'll be dealt with, that I promise!

Transylvania better get back into shape soon. The Sublime Porte will soon try subjugate them, now that Greece is once again under the Ottoman yoke. :mad:

We shall have to see! :D
 

Enewald

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Well, it's quite realistic that not every member of the alliance gains some land in every war...
If that be so, Europe would look quite different today. :p

I say ally with the Horde... ;)
 

Kapt Torbjorn

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Well, it's quite realistic that not every member of the alliance gains some land in every war...
If that be so, Europe would look quite different today. :p

I say ally with the Horde... ;)

Aye, Hitler might have been stopped by the mighty armies of Flanders and Britanny!

And an alliance with the Horde, eh? Hmmm
 

NGAC

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What about Novgorod? Are they in a position to be made as allies? They could provide a second front to the Horde, albeit probably a temporary one. And don't let the Ottomans rest! Drive them into the Aegean at your first good opportunity!
 

JDMS

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Is the OE allied with the Horde? They seem to be in most of my games. In that case, attacking the Turk might not be such a great idea. ;)
 

Kapt Torbjorn

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What about Novgorod? Are they in a position to be made as allies? They could provide a second front to the Horde, albeit probably a temporary one. And don't let the Ottomans rest! Drive them into the Aegean at your first good opportunity!
I wouldn't really want to ally with Novgorod, because it seems every 5 years like clockwork the Horde will declare a jihad against them and rush through, sometimes bringing in the Ottomans with them.

Also, that way Austria wouldn't be at my side, and Transylvania vs Golden Horde & Ottomans would be a very short war indeed.


Crush the Turk!

That enthusiasm is echoed in Transylvania as well!

Is the OE allied with the Horde? They seem to be in most of my games. In that case, attacking the Turk might not be such a great idea. ;)

It seems sporadic. They'll be allied one week, then the next they won't. I think the Ottomans kept declining call to arms because their war exhaustion had skyrocketed (thanks in no small part to King Istvan).

--

Also, I'm a bit sad to announce that it is crunch time for my courses, and I'm farther behind in some than I'd like, so updates will be sporadic and somewhat far between in time, but I give you all my word that it will pick right back up again once everything is sorted out with school. I'll probably end up writing a little bit each day, as I'm around 40 years ahead in the game of where the last chapter left off, so there's no lack of material.

I may also re-write or change around some of the earlier chapters, because they are admittedly fairly sloppy works.
 
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Kapt Torbjorn

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Enewald

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Any means necessary.
I am happy as long as I know that one day new update shall be written. :p
 

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Very cool AAR:)
 

Kapt Torbjorn

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Part 1 - Chapter 11 - The Death of a Giant
King István was slowly decaying. He was old now, for the time period. At nearly 40 years old, he was one of the longest standing monarchs of Transylvania, having guided it through one of its most turbulent times. Statues had already been built in his honour all across the kingdom, but the greatest of honours bestowed upon the King was the re-naming of Transylvania’s capital to Kolozsvár, the King’s last name. The dynasty would die with István, but he would never be forgotten to the people of Transylvania.

The old King would not be given peace is his waning years however. The Austrians, fresh from their victory against Bohemia, sought to press their claims to the lands of Northern Italy, and to that end declared war against the Aquileans, a long forgotten ally of Transylvania, on the 1st of December, 1449. The war brought some of Italy’s largest powers against the Austrians and their allies, including the merchant republic of Venice and Genoa. King István was hardly deterred by the possibility of an Italian sea-borne invasion of his lands, and knew that Transylvania still held a great debt to the Austrians for their help in the crusade against the Turks. The call was answered, and though the people undoubtedly grew weary, the sons of Transylvania marched to war once more.

Transylvania’s main focus during the war was the Genoese province of Kaffa, located on the Black Sea. There were two possibilities of reaching the city, either by boat, utilizing Transylvania’s tiny navy, and hoping the Italians did not think to send some of their own navy to destroy it, or by land through Horde controlled territory. Oddly enough, the Horde allowed the armies of Transylvania access through their lands, and King István set upon the province like a feral dog sensing easy prey. With nowhere for the Genoese army to retreat to, it fought gallantly to its death. The field before the city was littered with the dead, and the garrison, knowing full well they fought a battle they couldn’t possibly win, opened the gates on May of 1450.

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The Battle of Kaffa, February, 1449

For the rest of the war Transylvania’s army camped near the capital, as the Austrians were handling the Italian armies admirably, smashing aside all opposition and toppling cities as if they were made of straw. The war came to a close in 1450, rather abruptly as Austria found itself again in a war with the Bohemians, honouring their guarantees of independence. The Treaty of Aquilee was signed in November, and brought the Aquilean provinces of Görz and Istria under Austrian ownership.

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The Treaty of Aquilee, July, 1450

The Horde continued its advance into Russian lands. Muscowy was now a divided kingdom, standing as a pitiful reminder to the dreams of the Rus. The merchant republic of Novgorod did not escape the Horde’s eyes either, and was crippled and brought down to half their size by the Tartars. It was grim news for Transylvania, who shared a border with the Beast of the East, as it was referred to during the time. Transylvania’s armies were being maintained primarily from the taxes raised from Banat and Transylvania proper, but that was beginning to change. As the newly conquered territory of Transylvania began to integrate more fully to the state, taxes began flowing into the treasury, and for the first time in decades Transylvania’s economic situation did not seem so dire (Oltenia cores, Culture Accepted: Romanian). But as this shimmer of good news for Transylvania was seen, the church bells rang somber tones across the country; King István Kolozsvár was dead at the age of 42.

The country was thrown into turmoil for a few short weeks, as István had not left an heir, his battle wounds preventing him from siring a child long ago. Eventually the lineage of his family was traced to a noble family in Lithuania, and a man who had never ventured to Transylvania before in his life became king. He was not a kind man, but the blood of conquerors ran in his veins, and his tale would shape Transylvania for years to come. The King is dead, long live the King!

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The Coronation of King Mihály I Plater, May, 1433

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I. King Mihály ‘The Bear’ Plater, May, 1433

I. Portrait of Henry II (Henryk Pobozny) the Pious of Silesia. More information can be found here.
 
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