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Forward Over the Horizon (Alt: The Republic of the Morning Star) Options · View
Posted: Sunday, September 17, 2017 10:40:00 AM

Joined: 4/11/2013
Posts: 251
For this first post, I won't be doing it incharacter, mostly because I don't really have a good way to explain the 400 year time skip ICly (if we even plan to). SO ON WITH THE GAMEPLAY AAR (from which I crib a bunch of ideas off KoM's newest post cause I actually liked its structure a fair bit.)

First the big change, namely the conversion of Saarland to a Peasant Republic. I actually do have an explanation for this, but I don't have the mental spirit to write it at the moment. It will likely come in the next sessions AAR which will hopefully be a story one. The general gist is that the Saars are still around, indeed, a Saar is leading at the moment, but they are more stepping back from government as I never really had an intricate court in CK2. As it was by the end I had a republic and a single count in my empire with everything else absorbed by the King. Retiring to a symbolic position while mayors and other peasantry step up to do the ruling (being the big difference compared to say, an English Monarchy in that the governors are not of noble or rich blood)

Now, onto the map of the world.

The situation at the start of EU4, Consul Mielitty Saar takes up the position of the first consul of the new Peasants Republic, working to transfer power for after his death. Saarlands 152 development to start is not the best...indeed, its actually the worst of the human nations, outside of Poitou. This is more because I never built wide in CK2, as the Saarish capital of Abo is actually one of the most developed places in the Old World (I believe, third, behind Mordor's Capital and I think KoMs by a single point.) Unfortunately, it does not count as part of Europe (somehow), which unfortunately came back to bite me in the ass when the Renaissance hit and I had no natural growth in Abo. Regardless though the map is looking a mix of good and bad for Saarland.

The good is that I am in a long time alliance with KoM's Ynglinga Rike which secures much of my borders. Between us we have more or less total hegemony over Scandinavia, as Norway is not exactly in a position to say otherwise at the moment. To my immediate east is Golle's Great Novgorod. The only other nation sharing a direct land border with me, Golle and I have worked together in CK2 (more specifically, he spun off Karelia to help me) and while neither of us have ever been formally allied, we've never actually had a hostile border and even during this session when due to KoM triggering a coalition against himself by the central Europe AIs that pulled Golle in on the other side, we just sat there and did nothing. As such, for the moment I think I can consider my land borders more or less safe. Much of the rest of Continental Europe is of little interest to Saarland, as similar to Mordor, due to my position geographically and politically I can more or less play isolated from much of the world. The only real aims I had in Europe was the reclamation of Borneholme (island off the south coast of Sweden), which was achieved as part of the Second Baltic Crusade. Outside of that, during the conversion I somehow gained control of Oland, the island between Lithuania and Great Novgorod. So far it's proven of little use and is Catholic but well, it helps make the Saarish Island Empire look a bit more interesting.

Still a general run down.

Hadogai's Leon has quite a fair bit of scattered territory, and has the potential to PU England and a few other places due to shared Dynasties. As it is the only points he has that might be of tangential interest are the Leonese Netherlands, but as its part of Continental Europe I could really care less. I fear we may come into eventual conflict over colonization. Though I think he's been delayed along these lines by a disastrous war with Aquitaine that spiraled into something worse when Andalusia joined in in a different war, heavily cutting down Leon's territory and potential to unite Spain.

Dragoon's Varingia is admittedly a state I'm wary about if only again, tangentially. I more fear an eventual Novgorod-Varingia 'Russian Brothers' War that drastically shifts the political situation in the east. It seems that Dragoon is heading more into the South/South East then North so I hope that war on that front can be avoided.

Mark's HRE in the screen above looks like it's in alot of trouble. It has rebels out the wazzo at the game start, but it's also massive. Easily many times larger then any other nations in terms of development. He's rather far out of my zone of any interaction, but I worry that part of Portugal may be leveraged into colonial states eventually which would be bad news, as I highly doubt unless Mark gets into some serious trouble that I'll ever be able to really match him in combat.

Outside of those three, I really don't have much to say on the continental players. Moravia is way out of the way, same with the African and Asian players. The other big swinger in my ballpark though is James' Eire. His eventually advanced Infantry along with being nearly double my size in development if not more means that direct conflict is more or less a no go. Tensions that were very heavily inflamed toward the end of CK2 have cooled quite a fair bit with the transition to EU4 and a bit of conversation, so I'm no longer fearing imminent invasion and indeed depending on how things go, I'm hoping the North Sea powers can eventually come to some sort of Treaty of Tordesillas esq agreement over colonization instead of the three of us brawling over the Eastern Seaboard but as colonization has till at least 1490 or the third session before we can engage in it, the situation could, but hopefully won't, change drastically.

Now, onto Saarland itself.


As anyone who has read KoM's most recent AAR post, or was at the auction, or read the auction thread, knows, I took the Pirate idea set. I actually traded KoM for this set, giving him the Viking set he is currently using, in exchange for some extra mana for myself that helped me get a tech lead.

Now many are probably wondering what sort of insanity I'm involved in giving away what is to many a stronger idea set. The reason is quite simple, it was very much against my gameplay style. I will be the first to admit I am not an aggressive player. Anyone who watched me in CK2 would know that, I prefer to focus on crafting a narrative and having fun over winning. The Viking set at its core felt like one meant for conquest, which is something I'm hoping to not do much of in this game. I quite like European Saarland as it is and I'm hoping I can realize my later game ambitions without serious conflict. Instead I selected the Pirate set because it is a much more defensive playstyle. It comes with bonuses to defenses, including an attrition bonus and hostile core creation cost, two big things to make myself as unappealing a target as possible. It also comes with traditions that give a bonus to light ships and allow raiding one of which is quite useful as it makes my trade stronger by proxy, and one which would be useful if I wasn't neighbouring a much less inhibited Viking state. So far I've only managed to launch a very short raid against Lithuania and other then that I don't have much use of it. Later on the infantry combat power boost and eventually, privateer efficiency, are ones I'm hoping to make use of once naval range extends and I can go screw over some more AI with pirate swarm.

As for my leader, Meilitty is not bad

Not great but I could do with alot worse. That terrible mil tech definitely isn't helpful, but he's got fairly respectable Admin and Diplomacy. Unfortunately due to a bug, I started with 0 republican tradition, so he immediatly turned into a dictator. This had the unfortunate side effect of robbing me of a bunch of Mana, but in the end I kinda made up for it by taking some republican tradition loss in exchange for mana to set it on even ground when the bug got fixed. Either way, I should be back to normal next session, odds are Meilitty probably won't live through it but ehh, a new guy could be useful.

As for the session itself, not much major happened. The Second Balkan Crusade ended easily enough after the players backed out, and I've been building up my trade and the economic strength of Saarland, so far I'm happy with the results. I could have done without KoM dragging me into the Coalition war, which is still ongoing as of the end of the session. It unfortunately cost me most of my standing army, my fleet is in good health though, and my budgets doing okay so it's not really an issue. My hope is that we can bring the war to an end sooner then later so I can make focuses in other departments. Technologically I've got a pretty solid start. I'm behind what I'm guessing is probably Korea or some other far east nations, but I'm one of the most teched nations in Europe.

I'm hoping to also have Renaissance by next session, as its slowly spreading out of Stockholme through Aland and into Abo. From there it should catch on fairly quick.

King of Men
Posted: Monday, September 18, 2017 7:35:47 AM
 Legatus legionis

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Joined: 11/23/2007
Posts: 8,216
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could have done without KoM dragging me into the Coalition war

Sorry about that, they DOWed me so my allies got auto-called. You could have sep-peaced. Indeed in my SP testing, the Saarland AI would reliably peace out, cancel the alliance, and attack me. Big Grin

Could you cross-post to Paradox? An active AAR thread is a fine recruiting tool for when the player attrition hits.

Read my blog.
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Posted: Friday, September 22, 2017 9:49:46 AM

Joined: 4/11/2013
Posts: 251
"Haaah, the world continues to turn." Mielitty Saar said with a weary sigh, the dusty pages of his ancestor's book, proof a round earth that spun around the sun, sitting on his desk. At the time many had taken issue with the tome but the Saarish family trusted their own, and so did the people of Saarland. The consul had made sure of that, spreading his ancestor's teachings through the rudimentary system of learning for those of wealth in the land. The council was looking to try to expand the program to the general public, but given the scattered nature of Saarland, they didn't hold out much hope for such to be really implemented.

Meilitty had spent decades as the Consul, he had once intended to give up his position in his fifties, then the counsel at the time had convinced him to remain in power and give the country his guiding hand. He had been worried of his grand experiment potentially reverting back to the monarchy of yesteryear, but he had accepted. Now he was seventy one, and he knew he did not have much life left in him. Near skeletal hands, worn down from years of work keeping his country guided forward, would rest across the books pages as he leaned back in his chair. Beside it was records from his explorer Kuuti Kauro, the man had taken three boats from his fleet and gone to explore for what he said was a route to China. To say the least given the large groups of barbarians to the east that blocked travel between the far east many a time and to say the least Meilitty had wanted to enter his own name into the annals of history like his ancestor who had penned the book before him. He had many tasks of his own yes, he had colonized islands far from Saarish lands, he had reclaimed Borneholm from the invaders, he had lead his country into a near golden age of technological process. It still wasn't enough though, they were things of interest, but they would be but footnotes in a tale, no he needed something greater, and he had found it.

The thought brought a smile to his face, for he had found something even better. The sailors didn't find the far east, but instead Kuuti, having arrived back in Shetland just a few months ago, had found something even greater. A new land, empty of much of humanity. His explorations along the coastlines had found forest and beaches, from snow and tree covered coasts much like their home, to empty islands that were warm even in the winter. Truly his name would go into the history books now, the man who had sponsored the mission to find a new world. With this he could finally rest, and as he closed his eyes he felt his body fading as a light came to his eyes.

When his attendant came to bring the aging consul his dinner they found the old man had passed away. A smile on his withered face, his hand still laying over the Saarish tome, while the other clutched onto Kuuti's reports.

The last session was interesting, and quite fun even if little major changes happened. Mielitty lived for much of the session to the ripe age of 71, literally just long enough for the mission to explore the North American Coastline to complete. This did make Saarland the first nation to discover North America, and shortly there after I mapped much of the North and South American coastlines. Due to how the colonial rules work, for the moment I don't see much point in sending conquistadors as it will take me some time before exploring and colonizing inland really becomes important. Outside of this Mielitty has presided over a mini-golden age for Saarland. Under his command not only am I the tech leader in the world (not that it matters so much this early on) with 7/7/7 tech, but I've also nearly maxed out Exploration ideas ontop of that. The renaissance has spread to Saarland and all its holdings and I colonized both Madeira and Cape Verde to extend Saarish colonial range down much of Africa and to more or less the entire American coastline, though colonization hasn't begun yet due to the rules.

While Saarland still isn't a great power by any means, I've held a rather consistent spot as anywhere from #2 to #4 diplomatically as its a relatively close race at the top. My strong naval presence and technology doing much of the lifting there. Unfortunately just due to limited size I can't even hope to compete militarily on the great power front. Other major things include the return of Finnish troops to Western Europe, this time landing and invading France right at the tale end of KoM's coalition defense war, and eventually, the death of Mielitty.

With Mielitty dead, the Peasant's Republic has begun in earnest, the title of Consul having passed on to Urho Jalo, unlike Mielitty who had been mostly an Admin and Diplo man, Urho is a Military Leader, mainly with the intention that now that my navy is comfortably in the lead over most people, I should focus to buffing my land forces even further. Though more specifically it's to help fill out my newest Idea Group, which is Plutocratic because damn being a republic is good sometimes and to be honest, I don't really plan to do much warfare so its a good use of my mil points.

Other then that though that's about the session. Saarish colonists are just waiting for the next session to begin to start the colonization of the new world and I'm hoping to continue the Saarish growth for a while longer yet. Now onto some screens!

Saarish troops in France, laying siege to the coastal capital of the country.

Saarish colonies, I don't plan to touch the actual African coast if I can, as Mali scares me.

Urho and his advisers. I hope Urho will grow into his role in the future. Though I may end up cycling military leaders for an election or two to boost up my republican tradition.

Big Bright Green Saarish Tech

I wasn't kidding when I said this is more or less a Saarish Golden Age, I'm rolling in the Splendor.
Posted: Saturday, September 30, 2017 10:54:23 PM

Joined: 4/11/2013
Posts: 251
Last session things happened. One of the bigger points was the breaking of the Scandinavian alliance in the face of the overwhelming coalition that was Novgorod-Varignia-HRE-Eire. Following that incident both KoM and I unleashed a number of raids on eachother until at least toward the end of last session, we seemed to have come to a settling on that issue. Mostly because neither of us wanted the devestation raids bring.

As it was though, the session started off for Saarland pretty well on the colonial front. Saarish explorers managed to reach all the way down the African coast to encounter the Kongolese while the first startings of Far Saarland began in Newfoundland.

Eventually the local area would be renamed into suitably Saarish names.

Due to Saarish policies toward the natives, namely burn their homes and send them scattering like the Saars had done to the Karelian Barbarians long ago, the natives proved to be rather contentious. As such Far Saarland began to get an ever increasing garrison. The origional 1,000 men stepping up to 3,000, and eventually at its peak to 15,000 as the Saarish colonists moved to secure the Into Estuary (St. Lawrence.) A good number natives needed to be knocked around for that one. Unfortunately for the Natives, they were anywhere from mil tech 1 to mil tech 3 (there was a federation of them battling me.) As a result the battles tended to look like this

This was their most successful battle, I somehow missed taking a screen of it but the end casualties were about 2-4,000 for me, and 50,000-80,000 natives were killed as they kept throwing 30k stacks at me and getting the wiped. Other then that I continued my slow colonization of the area. With the age of Reformation seemingly quite some distance away I was able to make full use of the developed colonies bonus to get Far Saarland to quickly grow. It's already at about 50 dev and with two more colonies on the way it should be up to 60 or 70. I'm mildly worried about it eventually eclipsing me in development but I'll deal with that when it happens. For now due to continued exploration, I have a few other places to target once my colonists are finished up where they are.

On the homefront though things weren't quite going as well. Due to a succession of short lived leaders to try to build up my republican tradition and colonialism somehow firing in Poitou, I ended up falling behind in technology as I force spawned Colonialism in Abo.

This did end up having the advantage of letting me embrace the institution before most of Europe, and thanks to my spawning it's spreading to most of Eastern Europe already.

I've actually mostly caught up in tech by this point, but with the advantage of embracing colonialism I'm hoping to get a good tech lead again next session, or continue to pull far ahead of most people on national ideas. As it was the session wasn't terribly interesting, mostly just me slowly growing and working on the colonial game. We'll see if next session brings anything more interesting.
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