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Wednesday, March 04, 2015

EU4 Manchu Empire campaign AAR

Post 1 - Originally published on Google+ on 2015-01-20 07:23:33 UTC

Manchu Emperor of China, Part 01: 1399-1405

Shattered Europe (with tons of fixes over currently released version) + Fun and Balance, starting as Khan Bakuri Yongson of Manchu tribe of Jianzhou, the goal is to establishing myself as ruling dynasty in China, and fully control Greater China, directly or via vassal states. How big is Greater China? Somewhere between Chinese culture group borders and everything east of Afghanistan, it's not time to worry about definitions.

Did I just say I'm trying to conquer India for the third time after my CK2 Ili tribal and EU4 Extended Timeline British Empire campaigns derailed? Yes I did. Shattered Europe start mostly for hilarity, to see what kind of crazy stuff will happen in Europe - but it helps Muslims in India somewhat. Lucky nations random for the lulz.

The long term plan is to ally Ming and wait for them to naturally implode, then move it and clean up. Or if they refuse to implode for too long, I might help them with it instead.

The first problem I can see is that I know of lands as far away as Finland, but I don't know of Japan... Seriously? I guess these are default horde maps, and maps are generally per tech group. Not a big deal, let's marry Ming and Korchin, and try to get allied with them, rival all non-Ming neighbours. I don't need any fabrications, as a horde I have tons of free CBs. (fabrications might still save some admin points on coring)

Ming isn't terribly enthusiastic about an alliance due to my weakness, but Korchin is happy once I marry them, so we can 2-vs-1 Haixi almost right away.

Meanwhile Yeren attacks Haixi too - this is pretty neat, as I force vassalize Haixi dragging me into defensive war against Yeren, and this means I can call Korchin into arms, no matter how old the war is... Sweet. Korchin got itself into Oirats vs Mongolia war, so it wouldn't accept any offensive call to arms.

Weirdly Ming would accept our alliance now, even though I was still at war - I guess Yeren is too far for them to care - and they even joined our little war here. So much win. And Ming sent me massive 1.84/month war subsidies.

So Yeren is pretty much rekt (see pic). Anyway, Yeren was not relevant, Korea is relevant, and their damn alliance with Ming. I can't even finish war against Yeren, since by new rules this would mean Ming joining Korea against me.

So I beat up Korea with Haixi's help, up to 70% warscore (a lot from battles as hordes vs nonhordes have some sweet CB), but I had to stop a bit earlier than I'd like because Ming white peaced Yeren so they could join Korea at any time - and I had call for peace going on as well.

I annexed and released Yeren to switch then from Shamanism to Confucianism

I ended up with 6.35 war exhaustion, army 9k short of design strength, and definitely dominant local power North side of Ming. Korea was forced to give me cash and reparation, lose 6 provinces (still considerably over vassalizable size), and most important of all - break relations with Ming.

Sadly Korchin set me as a rival, so I rivaled them back, as well as Oirats (higher rival range is so awesome, coming to you in next Fun and Balance version).

Plans for the next few years are coring North Korea, integrating Haixi, recovering manpower, dealing with hostile attitude Yeren has towards me, and getting exploration ideas so I can discover and conquer Japan before it unites.

Post 2 - Originally published on Google+ on 2015-01-20 12:39:19 UTC

Manchu Emperor of China, Part 02: 1405-1423

I took some break from fighting, helped Yeren siege back their provinces from rebels (peasants and pretenders) for some relations bonus, I only got into one small war with Korea (and some Japanese allies they had who never showed) for 2 provinces, as I couldn't take more, saving admin points for idea group.

Ming decided to rival me as well, so I was out of allies, and being in corner of the map and with small religion (well, big provincewise, but almost all of these provinces are Ming), allies are hard to get.

I got exploration ideas, sent some colonists to Siberian coast, got explorer, and discovered "faraway" islands of Japan.

I got alliance there with Ouchi clan (I hope to diplovassalize them at some point), fabricated some claims, sent 20k troops over by boat, and I'm ready to strike!

Target is OPM daimyo Yamana, allied with 3 clans in the east - OPM Date, 2-province Uesugi, and 3-province Takeda. Date got away with some reparations and religion change, but the other three clans became my vassals, two smaller ones also becoming Confucian. So 6/30 Japanese provinces done. (counting Ainu and Ryukyu as Japan too)

And so many vassal claims to push now! Time for the Second Japanese War, against 8-province Otomo clan and their OPM ally Date again. Ouchi accepted vassalization mid-war as well. Spoils of war got divided between vassal clans, leaving Otomo with their capital and new religion. 14/30 provinces conquered.

The Third Japanese War overlapped with the second, with attack on OPM clan Imagawa, and then at 7-province Shogunate, allied with OPM clan Shimazu and what was left of Korea.

Korea was really awkward, as I had no troops left on the mainland, and Yeren would be of no help, fighting endless war against pretenders. In the end I only got 4/6 Japanese provinces out of it.

After the war, I reestablished alliance with Ming. My four vassal daimyos now control 21/30 of Japanese provinces.

Pushing vassal claims apparently sometimes costs massive amount of diplo points, and sometimes it doesn't. The tooltip lies about it, but then it always lied about diplo point cost of peace deals.

I might be able to win against Ming, especially with help of AI stupidity, but I'm still hoping they'll fall apart on their own. The next target is Ainu - one of my clans fabricated claims to half of Hokkaido. Then I'll need to clean up Japan, and maybe this time crush Korea as well.

If that's done, and Yeren is annexed, I'll try expanding West as well towards steppes. Basically every direction that's not Ming. If Ming is still not fallen apart by the time I run out of targets, I'll move against them.

I'm playing much more casually than I normally do here. Just look at this manpower.

After Japanese Wars

Before Japanese Wars

Post 3 - Originally published on Google+ on 2015-01-20 15:46:19 UTC

Manchu Emperor of China, Part 03: 1423-1431

First, a quick war, I got half of Ainu for Uesugi.

Then I waited a bit, and got into war against Buryatia, Oirats, Mongolia, and Kara Del. The CB was not really important, and neither was the whole war really. Getting Ming on my side so I can finish off Korea was important.

I discovered that AI now cheats with land attrition. Fuck's sake Paradox, attrition mechanic is frustrating, but at least it used to be fair, now cheating is ridiculous. Basically AI armies are not added, each country's is counted independently. So AI had 3 stacks of 9k each (one Oirat, one Buryatian, one Mongolian) in 10k supply limit province, and as a result zero attrition. Paradox, seriously... And as far as I can tell, only AI gets to cheat that way, human player still follows old rules when in same province as vassals' stacks... This wins the biggest bullshit of the patch award.

Anyway, I sent half the army north to Buryatia, declared war on Korea naming Japan as cobeligerent and sent the other half south to Korea. Then I also declared one more war on Shimazu, remaining Japanese daimyo, leaving it up to my vassals to do all the island fighting.

Ming tried to help against the Oirats, but they were so bad at it. Maybe I shouldn't be trying to ally them, just fight them right away.

The war resulted in Buryatia and (South remaining half of) Korea becoming my new vassals, and my daimyos getting 2 more provinces in Japan (I could get more, but that would bleed me tons of diplo points, I already lost way a few hundreds by trusting the tooltip during my conquest of Japan) - and then in strategic realignment. Instead of old Oirat/Buryatia/Korchin and Ming/Korea/Japan alliances, now it's just Ming/Korchin, with me and Ming being rivals, very understandably.

What really sucks is how ridiculously tiny is "eclipsed rival" bonus, just +4. That while losing maybe +10 from long term rival. I really need to redo those bonuses one day.

Anyway, unfortunately I can't really attack Ming/Korchin alliance, as I have marriages with both. I can't annex any of my 6 subjects due to "Annexed Subjects, -3 diplomatic reputation" penalty, currently impossible to overcome other than by waiting it out (even +1 from max legitimacy, no OE penalty, and +2 advisor would still only get it to 0) - I'd need to get new idea group I guess, not sure if there's anything else I could do to get diplomatic reputation bonus.

So I basically ran out of good opportunities for expansion.

I'll be getting second colonist in a few years, Siberia might be poor, but it's huge, and by luck my first colony had gold. On the other hand both colonies got event that made them lose half their population, so it wasn't all that lucky.

For quick size comparison:

• Ming + Korchin: 101 provinces, 458 base tax (Ming has some allies in Indochina as well, doubtful they'll be of much use)
• Me + vassals: 68 provinces, 216 base tax
• Oirat + vassals: 19 provinces, 41 base tax

And Oirats were beating Ming anyway.

Post 4 - Originally published on Google+ on 2015-01-22 03:42:21 UTC

Manchu Emperor of China, Part 04: 1431: Planning time

Time for some planning. For Western hordes reforming the government makes a lot of sense, as it goes from +75% cost increase down to Muslim +40%, 35% is a huge difference. Sadly I only go to Chinese group at +60%, and 15% is not as impressive, especially considering that I'm currently benefiting from nice neighbour bonus from being in same tech group as all the European hordes, so actual bonus is even less.

There are following decisions to take:

• Unite Jurchen Tribes: gain cores in all of Manchuria (4 in Korchin, 4 in Ming), go Chinese tech and despotic monarchy
• Qing Dynasty: change tag, gain claims on all of China (must be Manchu), Beijing changes culture and becomes capital - must own 3 provinces currently in Ming and 1 currently in Mongolia
• Partial Westernization (Reform The Government): -250 each point type, -5 stab, 10 years of unrest, go Muslim tech - must neighbour Muslim or higher tech country

There's also normal Stop Being Horde decision (Reform The Government): -200 adm, -5 stab, go Chinese tech and despotic monarchy - no reason to take this one ever, for Eastern religion countries it goes Chinese tech, for everyone else it goes Muslim tech and is actually good.

Now the best case scenario would be going all the way Manchu, Qing, partial westernization in one go, but I'm not even close to prerequisites, and first decision costs me half the force limits and manpower, and doubling my army costs (or worse if it gets me over force limit).

Real options are:

• stay horde until much further, when I can go all the way, in the meantime core everything the hard way (or setup tons of Chinese minors as vassals) - I can get border with a Muslim country either going through steppes to the Uzbeks (who already reformed), or colonizing around through Taiwan, Indonesia, conquer some OPMs in India etc. (or maybe faster colonizing through Siberia to Uzbeks, silly as this might seem)
• one war against China to take all my free cores (and maybe Beijing as well) so it doesn't hurt that much, reform day before peace, then go West fighting Oirats until I get border with Muslim country (I don't even need to conquer Oirats, just take 1 province), partially westernize, fight Ming once that's done

Another thing is that I don't care about teching until I can get two more ideas (so I get my nationa idea for -10% tech cost discount), and for that matter until I can get straight to adm 7 for second idea group.

I think the temptation to get free cores is strong, but that's only 22 base tax, or 352 points without claims, or 242 with full claims. Would I pay that much for amazing CB, 2x manpower, 2x force limit, and tons of gold? Of course I would.

Eventually, 25% autonomy minimum and tech penalties will be too much, but that's quite some time away. By the way my average autonomy is currently at 41%, not that much better than Ming's 50%, and 13th highest in the world out of 340 coutries.

Incorporating the Shamanist mess that was Yeren into the country really screwed things up, and even the good parts of my country have 25% autonomy minimum.

Post 5 - Originally published on Google+ on 2015-01-22 17:00:17 UTC

Manchu Emperor of China, Part 05: 1431-1440

I waited for WE to go away, fabricated a bunch of claims, had my marriages with Ming and Korchin expired by death of my khan, and went for the First Ming War.

Ming got ridiculous number of 38k mercs (at peak), having barely any manpower on its own. Sadly it had total control of the seas, with total of 61 ships vs my 12, so that means all my daimyo vassals were stuck in Japan.

Ming's armies looked respectable in theory, but they were poorly managed, and much worse soldier-for-soldier than mine, so the got crushed. As a result Korchin became my vassal (I would prefer to just take their provinces directly, but I would need to pay massive diplo costs for each of Korchin's province as they were only cobeligerent, not war target). Then I was left with 53% warscore against Ming - 40% from battles, 10% from ticking warscore (for winning battles), and 3% from occupations (minus blockades). Yeah, that's not worth it. I took war reparations, 4 provinces including Beijing, and some minor gold.

This is going to take a very long time.

I finished off Shimazu and Japan, causing Yamana to change tag to Japan. I annexed smallest and most hostile of 4 daimyos, got alliance with Dai Viet (fairly futile, as they also allied Ming later).

Then a series of silly disasters happened - ruler died, heir was 0/0/1 child, so I chose "no child can be khan" option replacing him with low legitimacy 3/3/3 guy, and a minor pretender. Then I got hit by random -1 stability -10 legitimacy event.

So the country is not in the best shape - however my truce with the Ming just expired, so it's not the time to worry about that, it's time to kick some ass. It would take at least 9 100% wars to take over all of Ming, or more like 20 wars of the king I'm waging.

The only direction for expansion is into Ming territory

Post 6 - Originally published on Google+ on 2015-01-23 15:10:19 UTC

Manchu Emperor of China, Part 06: 1440-1448: The Second Ming War

And so the second Ming War begun! Naval balance of power was less one sided 54 to 25 ships, but Ming got a lot of naval battles against daimyo fleets, harming my warscore, which never got to ticking range from 80% battles won.

During the war my theologian died, increasing unrest greatly, so I had to deal with 38k peasant troops at the same time as I had to deal with the Ming, as well as 26k Yan and 5k Ainu troops. These numbers are all entirely unreasonable.

In the end I got 10 provinces out of Ming, setting up Jin in 7 of them, and used temporary border with Oirats to declare tribal war against them.

Sagir Yogir, Kham, Lan Xang, Taungu, Sukhothai, and Mong Yang all decided to join the pileup against the Ming in 3 separate wars, so hopefully they won't recoved by the time our truce expires. Only Sagir Yorig's war was successful, getting them 3 fairly poor provinces (7 base tax total).

Anyway, the Oirats. Buryatia got 3 provinces, Jin got 3, and Korchin got 6, leaving Oirats with just 6, but since we no longer share a border they might keep them for a while.

After that it was just fighting rebels (ridiculously many) and waiting for truce with Ming to expire. As soon as it happens, it's time to expand Jin, setup Liang as new vassal, or take some coastal land for myself (high warscore will allow for 2 out of these 3, there's no realistic way to do all 3 in one war).

Post 7 - Originally published on Google+ on 2015-01-23 20:09:17 UTC

Manchu Emperor of China, Part 07: 1448-1456: The Third Ming War

There's probably going to be like 15 of those..

The Ming came up with really brilliant strategy this time - since I'd get +40 from defeating their army, they decided to not have any serious army, so battle score topped at +31 (and even that after long carpet siege, from their 3rd or 4th wave of armies after they got totally wiped out a few times), and my stupid daimyos lost enough naval battles to disable ticking warscore.

Oh well, I got to the point where carpet sieging Ming is viable strategy, and my vassals helped somewhat as well. I pushed this war until they gave me 100% (instead of planned just getting 40% from battles and a bit extra for maybe 60%-70%), so Jin got 4 provinces of tehir accepted cultures (Jin and Mongol), Liang got all its 5 cores, and there were even 2 provinces for me, reducing Ming from 815% to 712% total warscore cost.

I like abusing the fact that having temporarily massive OE pretty often gets me "reduce OE" mission, which is basically free stability, as I get rid of OE by releasing a vassal.

I got 3 provinces from some pagans while waiting for truce with Ming to expire.

And now it's time for big decision:

• attack Ming as soon as truce expires (May 1456), or wait for when I can start annexing Jin (December 1456)
• expand Liang, setup new Chinese vassal, or take territory for myself? Korea is fabricating like crazy too, maybe they should get some territory?
• perhaps declare Dai Viet, Ayutthaya, and/or Pegu as cobeligerent and force vassalize them? I want to do that at some point, but perhaps it's still too early - getting involved in Indochina early would give me tons of sweet CBs to push claims of my vassals there, but then I don't have that many free vassal slots
• or just screw that, and as soon as I annex Jin go against Oirats and Sagir Yogir?
• maybe challenge Ming on sea? My navy used to be a joke, but it keeps growing and now it's up to 25 barques and 11 cogs, vs theirs 4 early carracks, 12 barques, and 11 cogs - that's somewhat behind, but not crazy behind
• I could stop bothering with Siberia and go colonize Alaska instead - it's currently out of range, but probably will be in range once I colonize Kamchatka

Post 8 - Originally published on Google+ on 2015-01-24 12:26:54 UTC

Manchu Emperor of China, Part 08: 1456-1463: The Fourth Ming War

I figured out the dilemma if I want to annex Jin as soon as possible (December) and wait with the war, or start war as soon as possible (May) and wait with annexation - I'll send a diplomat to Jin right away and he just won't get anything done for half a year, will start making progress as soon as possible.

For second dilemma, I'll name Dai Viet as cobelligerent even though I probably won't vassalize them this time (I'll have 2 free slots after annexing Jin) - it gives me more options depending on how the war goes, and in the worst case it ensures I'll have enough armies to fight to get +40% warscore from battles, making everything go more smoothly.

And for the naval question, Ming fleets got separated in two groups, with 8 light ships fighting 1 Ouchi ship, so I joined that battle with everything I got, and then what the hell, I attacked the rest of Ming fleet as well. Losses were heavy, but I won, and I just bought a bunch of replacement ships.

By the way, I misunderstood annexation mechanic - it's not just diploreputation, there's also +1 base, +1 same culture group, +1 same religion, so it's actually not as hard as I thought.

And this time I did a lot better job at looting - something I almost forgot about in previous wars.

I divided my army into 4 groups, 1 sent to Dai Viet, the other 3 first to fight enemy stacks, and then carpet siege North-East parts of Ming I wanted to take in the war. It was somewhat risky, as Dai Viet stack was isolated, but AI can't coordinate.

Somehow I managed to get perfect 100% battles won, land or sea, even my vassals managed not to lose any. For all that I took Dai Viet as vassal, gave Liang 5 provinces they fabricated claims on, 3 claimed to Korea, and 1 for myself as I had mission for it. Both Liang and Korea had somewhat dangerous 88% OE - Korea even had one more province claimed, but that would get their OE over 100% so I left that for the next war.

I took advantage of the truce to clean up remaining pagan tribes in Siberia, then I planned to strike west - sadly Oirats and Lan Xang decided to coalition - and Lan Xang would be a huge pain to transport troops to and occupy right now - most likely they'd just beat up Dai Viet.

Fortunately there's still backup plan of attacking Sagir Yogir, with Oirats as cobeligerent, which wouldn't trigger coalition. And it was probably a mistake, as horde vs horde is apparently really shitty CB which only lets me take provinces I border directly (not even bordered by vassals) without paying 50 diplo points each. So I took 2 provinces I could for Korchin, and got Kham as a vassal. There was a slight problem that they were completely disconnected from my territory, with some armies trapped (neither Ming nor Sagir Yogir were likely to let them back).

Meanwhile at home I had 45k Jin nationalists, which makes some sense, and 22k Chavchuvenian nationalists, which is just retarded.

The truce with Ming expires in November, but I might have wait a bit to deal with rebels. Goal of this war is connecting Kham with my lands, and expading Korea / Liang a little. I don't think I'll be able to connect Dai Viet too just yet, completely encircling the Ming, but that's definitely a plan at some point.

Post 9 - Originally published on Google+ on 2015-01-24 15:21:50 UTC

Manchu Emperor of China, Part 09: 1463-1469: The Fifth Ming War

This is going to be the first war featuring artillery, even if not very numerous yet. I've been avoiding teching up too fast as Nomad tech group is so painful, but I'm at 6/5/7, and the most advanced country is at 9/8/8 already.

I manage to connect all my vassals with very weirdly shaped conquest - Kham and Dai Viet getting 5 provinces each, and me, Korea, and Liang just 1 each.

And after that I stopped all the wars other than against rebels. Korchin and Ouchi got annexed, so I have 2 free vassal slots, and on top of that embassy seems to be giving +1 diplomatic relations in addition to +1 diplomat these days (when did that change?), so I'll have 3rd free slot soon. Truce with Ming expires January 1471.

I took Ouchi because they were fairly unfriendly Shinto minor, as well as not very useful being overseas to my wars. And Korchin because they hold some provinces I needed to form Qing - and because they interfered with nice display of my name on the map.

Who would be the best new vassals? I'm thinking Yue (Chinese coastal minor around Canton), what's left of Ayutthaya, Pegu and/or U-Tsang. I don't have good access to Central Asia or India, but Indochina is extremely relevant to my interests.

I'll get border with Uzbeks is about a decade by colonization.

I took humanist ideas as second group because I'm suffering from rebels everywhere - I can't realistically form Manchu into Qing and go Muslim tech in my current state, rebels would completely overwhelm me.

Korea spawned rebels (Jianhuai Patriots) which are for some reason friendly to me. Are they planning to defect to me or is it just a bug?

Post 10 - Originally published on Google+ on 2015-01-24 22:04:05 UTC

Manchu Emperor of China, Part 10: 1469-1477: The Sixth Ming War

I divided my about 102k army (excluding 2x 1k colonial militia) into 5 about even stacks - one assigned to policing the home front, one in Dai Viet, one at Liang/Kham border, and two really close to Ming's capital.

I DoWed Ming as soon as truce expired, getting into the war:

• Pegu as cobeligerent
• Lan Xang as cobeligerent
• U-Tsang with its vassals Guge and Ladakh as ally of Pegu
• Taungu as ally of Lan Xang

Sadly missing from this list were Ayutthaya (allied to Pegu and Lan Xang) and Oirats (allied to Ming). As result of the war Pegu got vassalized, Dai Viet and Korea got 2 provinces each, and Liang and Kham got 3 each. Not for any deep strategic reasons, mostly to make sure I always get 100% warscore out of Ming.

That's all nice territory in China, but my vassal acquisition plans did not work yet, and Pegu itself was made of 3 disconnected parts, one completely surrounded by enemy countries.

So during truce time I kept looking for good opening to strike against Indochina minors, but there simply wasn't any that didn't bring Ming into the war as well, which would be silly.

Even worse, Oirats got vassalized by Chagatai, so I don't have any more ways of growing Buryatia that don't involve war with Uzbek/Timurids/Ottomans/Qasim, or Chagatai/Timurids/Nogai/Golden Horde.

So instead, I annexed Liang and Korea, and I'll try to involve as many minors as possible during he next Ming war - with only 5/9 diplo slots taken, I don't need to be too picky.

I hope to get Arakan and Mong Yang - both have really nice claims and cores on Bengal. Ayutthaya would be even nicer, as it's currently OPM but it used to be big, but I don't see how to pull it into this. It would be nice if my existing vassals started fabricating, but only Korea and Liang ever showed any real enthusiasm for it, and these were the least useful claims (except Korea's first overseas claim let me get them provinces on the other side of Korea Bay, once first was done, the rest wasn't very relevant).

Regardless of any vassals acquired during the next war, I might need to take territory from one of Ming's allies instead of Ming directly (in negotiations with Ming as war leader, so they cost 0 dip) - all 3 fragments of Pegu are disconnected from my mainland.

Post 11 - Originally published on Google+ on 2015-01-25 14:48:26 UTC

Manchu Emperor of China, Part 11: 1477-1483: The Seventh Ming War

How many generations will fight over emperorship of China?

Anyway, Timurids settled down, my khan died leaving another child in place, which got usurped by a nice 4/3/5 khan with entirely reasonable 74 starting legitimacy for an usurper.

So another Ming war, pulling almost all Indochina into it. Taungu gave me some war reparations as did Mong Yang, Arakan that and switch religion to a more sensible one.

Then I got 5 provinces from Ming to setup Yue (67% warscore), 2 provinces from Sukhothai (one for Pegu, one temporary for myself), and 1 in Lan Xang (also for Pegu). I don't really have any good CBs over there, so wasting potential 33% warscore worth of provinces is fine.

Using temporary province for free CBs, I declared wars on Ayutthaya (with Taungu as non-cobeligerent) and Ligor (with Malacca and Kedah as cobeligerent, and Pagarruyung, Bengal, Brunei, and Pattani as non-cobeligerents), and then since I had some armies free DoWed Ryukyu too (using CB from exploration idean).

The plan was to vassalize Ayutthaya, make them join the war, and return them their cores. But halfway through the war I figured out that makes no sense - I can just give all that land to Pegu instead. That had an awkward side effect of giving Pegu 128% OE (and me 12% as I couldn't offload Ayutthaya's core without Ayutthaya existing), but I planned to keep my armies parked there anyway, so I can help them with rebels.

After that it was just waiting for truces to expire and dealing with endless rebellions. By the way you could probably avoid most of the rebels I'm facing by avoiding "decrease autonomy" button, but to hell with them!

I still have tons of vassal slots, so I have a trick planned for the next war.

Post 12 - Originally published on Google+ on 2015-01-25 20:07:09 UTC

Manchu Emperor of China, Part 12: 1483-1490: The Eighth Ming War

This time I did a small trick - instead of DoWing Ming directly, I DoWed Sukhothai, with Ming (obviously), Mong Yang, Sarig Yogir, and Arakan all as cobeligerents.

The war was joined by Assam and Lan Xang. Quite a few countries could have joined but didn't.

Arakan and Mong Yang got vassalized - I'm not sure why I can't get them to rejoin current war - it makes sense why they shouldn't be able to, but I don't know what's the mechanic preventing it.

Lan Xang got to return one core to Mong Yang. Lanzhou defected to me by event. Assam got forced to Confucianism.

Then I did serious border cleanup - Khan got 3 Ming's and 1 Sarig Yogir's province. Dai Viet got 2 provinces from Ming, and Yue got 6, including that annoying island.

All these assignments by the way are carefully planned - Buryatya and Japan are out of range, Pegu is still seriously overextended, Lan Xang's land would cost 2x, Mong Yang and Arakan can't join, and what I could get is carefully balanced to get 100% warscore cost while assigning provinces to countries where they'll be accepted and if possible looking pretty, and as much as possible being immediately coreable, and keeping OE manageable. Not every criterion can be fulfilled simultaneously, but I think about peace deals a lot and early - something I've noticed nobody on youtube gives a shit about.

The good thing about this is that I have a lot of new directions to expand now, and still one free vassal slot. Did I promise conquest of India? Assam is in India, and some first fighting already happened there, it's only a matter of time until all of India falls.

Let's start a few more wars:

• Horde CB against Ligor (cobeligerent Pasai and Pagarruyung; joined by Brunei and Sulu)
• Arakan's claims against Taungu (joined by Lan Xang)
• Mong Yang's core reconquest against Bengal (joined by Multan, Gujarat, Delhi, Pattani)
• Mong Yang's core reconquest against Manipur

Conquest of Indochina, West Indonesia, and Bengal region need to proceed faster. In all the wars I got a total of 14 provinces for my vassals, plus some reparations and other minor concessions, creating a fairly dubious but continuous connection linking all my vassals, all the way to Sumatra.

I was not done yet - Khmer conquered what was left of Ligor, volunteering for border with me. I had one free vassal slot, and I was just about to annex Dai Viet and Japan, freeing 2 more. If they're asking for it so hard...

And there was also annoying OPM Dali I needed to clean up.

All that was extremely busy waiting for truce to expire, and there's still half a year to go.

Technically 3 of my vassals' provinces are already in India. I'm not sure if I actually want to conquer all of India, or just enough to make my borders pretty. Forming Qing might very well be the last thing I'll do, giving up horde CB without something to replace them (either religious ideas CB or imperialism CB, but that's ridiculously late) just seems so awful.

I sort of won already - even if it would take 4 more wars to fully annex Ming, even assuming I do maximum Ming province annexation every time - and I did less than that for many reasons in the past so perhaps it will actually be 5-7 more wars.

Post 13 - Originally published on Google+ on 2015-01-26 20:21:43 UTC

Manchu Emperor of China, Part 13: 1490-1503: The New Emperor of China (and the end)

I appiled some modest horde nerfs which will get into next Fun and Balance version, increasing army cost from 18.41 to 24.58 (-50% to -40%, but stacking with -20% bonus from Manchu ideas), decreasing my force limit 259 to 227 (+100% to +75% bonus), and manpower proportionally as well. I overdid them by a bit.

It's weird that I didn't mod anything yet this campaign... Oh wait, actually I did, Shattered Europe was corrupting save games, so I setup a bunch of province history cleanup scripts and fixed that all, including fixing live save files. I wonder why I never mentioned that, this kind of straight bug fixing just seemed unrelated to all the Manchu operations.

The Ninth Ming War was ridiculously one-sided - almost no fighting, just endless stream of popups that this or that siege finished. I took 3 provinces in India (all of Assam), 4 provinces in Indochina (2 from Sukhathai, 2 returned Khmer cores from non-cobeligerent Lan Xang), and 4 in China (1 for Kham, 3 for Yue).

Time to end this. Manchu decision. Qing decision. Get stability up to +3, go Muslim tech (for -5 satbility), pay to get it back to +1, get down from 165 to 132 units. Weirdly my force limit soon went up to 144 - is that because of autonomy which was secretly 0% in many provinces but counted as 25%? (minimum autonomy is actually minimum _effective_ autonomy; actual autonomy is secretly recorded in save file, even if not used or displayed anywhere). Well, now that I no longer suffered from 25% minimum autonomy, I decided to press "decrease autonomy" button a bit more - getting up to 150 force limit. I guess I had no reason to disband all those troops.

The only remaining thing was to ensure the country doesn't fall apart during reforms. I got into quickie war agauinst OPM Manipur for Mong Yang's core.

Other than that, I spent the next 10 years fighting rebels until Western Influences and Increased Centralization both expired, and my inquisitor got replaced by a theologian, resulting in 0 unrest in all provinces. Well, not really, most of that is due to "recent uprising" modifier, as pretty much every rebel group which could rebel did.

As I didn't attack them the day truce ended, Ming, Lan Xang, and Malacca setup a coaliton against me, but that's easy to break in one war.

And that concludes the campaign. China, India, and everything else in Asia east of Timurids is just a matter of trivial cleanup, not worth actually executing. Thanks to -10% tech cost as Manchu, I'm just a couple techs behind Ottomans, so nobody in Asia could even be a threat by outteching me. If I really wanted, Badajoz colonized Cape, so I could send some colonists there instead of to Siberia, and fully westernize by 1550.

It was an OK quick campaign, but I've played better.

Some random modding and strategy points:

• trade system is infuriating - I had just 2 merchants so I had no choice but to let trade value leak all over the place - it either needs reversible trade links (not gonna happen), or nations automatically steering towards their capital even without merchants (in one node I had 100% trade power, it still leaked 1/3 of trade value wrong way), or some ways to get free merchants, let's say if you have >75% of trade power (needs some care to avoid stacking that with trade company bonuses).
• Ming didn't get even close to collapsing ever, CK2 style assassinations would be so nice. I hoped for them to crush into countless pieces and interesting political alliances between Chinese minors struggling for dominance, what I got instead was a series of one sided stack wipes.
• Horde bonuses were too big, so small nerf will be applied to next release (to about halfway between vanilla and current levels)
• For pure power level reasons I should have stayed horde until I got all of India, vassal claims/cores CBs are better than nothing, but really weak in practice
• I honestly don't recall losing any battles ever, except one to rebels during westernization (which was a bit risky, but I preferred to take the chance to avoid their siege succeeding). My vassals lost a few, especially on sea, but over last half of campaign I don't even recall a single loss by my vassals. I'm pretty damn good at microing troops, but that's fairly extreme.
• Korean and Japanese are no longer in Chinese group, but with huminist ideas they are big enough to keep accepted. Other unaccepted cultures I tried to diploconvert, but that's slow due to religious problems and nationalism blocking it. Beijing got converted by forming Qing.
• No idea why some neighbouring Buddhist vassals had -40 heretic (like Buryatia), and others had -10 heretic (like Kham). Anybody has any guesses?

Time to try some other game now.

Maps below are countries, diplomatic, religion, cultures, accepted cultures.

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