I’ve been playing a fair amount of EU3 again recently.
For those of you not familiar with it, it is a Grand Strategy game made by Paradox. It’s a giant game of Risk essentially, only much, much more complicated as you have to handle the diplomact, trade and economy of your chosen nation as well as it’s armies. Yes, it may be six years old now, but the developers are still supporting it, in fact the most recent patch was released just last week!
This time around, I’m playing with the Death & Taxes mod that tweaks and changes various gameplay mechanics and adds a much of stuff that makes the game an even richer experience than it already was. It’s great fun and great and teaching your history and geography without you even realising it! 😉
I chose the Byzantine Empire as my nation this time and as the game starts in 1356 the once mighty Empire is in it’s waning years (it’s the three purple provinces shown below).
Being an Empire of the Orthodox Christian persuasion it’s not a good position, to the east is the Ottoman Empire and to the west we have a mostly Catholic Europe… I’m going to attempt to retake our Empire’s former lands!
So, twenty years of war later it’s 1377 and I’ve managed to secure most of the Ottoman Empire.
Another twenty years of bloodshed later, 1396 and the Empire has pushed east until we meet Persia. Not wishing to fight them (yet) we halt the advance. We’ve managed to free the country of Iraq (the light purple, bottom left) as a fellow Orthodox Christian nation and we’ve also taken control of Judea in the south. We’ve had an alliance with Bulgaria (greyish purple) for some time and they’ve, unfortunately, managed to take some of the lands to the north, we may have to do something about that.
A number of Holy Wars later and it’s now 1448. We’ve taken a good portion of land to the south from the Mamluks (thanks to our Ehthiopian allies), including Mecca. No small task. However all this war and rapid expansion is starting to take it’s toll on the Empire’s economy and stability.
And so for the next forty years, until 1487, the Empire turns it attention inwards, working on converting it’s conquered lands to the state religion, building it’s econonmy and, in a few places, tidying it’s borders (notice Bulgaria has been pushed back out of our rightful lands). We’ve been supporting Georgia’s struggle against the Golden Horde and helped Moldovia break free from Lithuania’s control.
What next for the Empire? Whilst we’ve not reclaimed the western part of our lands, the east is looking healthy. The problem with expanding west is well Austria and the rest of the Holy Roman Empire. We’ll need to work on incorporating the likes of Serbia and Wallachia into the Empire, they’re our allies at the moment and might be able to be convinced to be integrated peacefully. Bulgaria’s going to become toast fairly soon. Modern day Greece is still fairly fragmented so we may be able to seize those lands too… The 16th century is almost upon us and that should open up the world to colonisation. Traditionally England and Spain rule the roost there, but England’s not doing too great at the moment, so Spain’s going to have a lot of freedom… and maybe there’s room for the Byzantine Empire in the New World?