The Let's Play Archive

Europa Universalis III: Divine Wind

by Kersch

Part 20: Austria Part 3: Becoming Emperor 1441-1469

Austria Part 3: Becoming Emperor 1441-1469

We've got a mission that grants us a subjugation CB for the purpose of vassalizing Ulm. More vassals are always welcome when playing in the HRE, because since the vassal relationship greatly impacts the chance they will vote for your reforms. We need to keep our infamy down to secure out votes for becoming Emperor, but with our modified diplomacy score so high, we should be fine as long we don't get above about 20 infamy.

Our primary army stationed in Vienna is commanded by our king, Ferdinand I. His 6 shock and 3 maneuver basically make him a superstar at this point in the game.

A second core army stationed in Sopron is lead by a general named Otto Buseck. We recruited Otto with all of the military tradition gained during the long war with Burgundy. He is quite good as well.

A Venetian alliance bloc comes to the aid of the city state of Ulm. This is actually a good thing, because there are a couple of tempting provinces we could take from Venice.

Ulm is quickly overrun by Ferdinand's army and is forced to become a vassal. With the subjugation CB and the mission reward, we actually end up with less infamy than we started with.

With the subjugation of Ulm over, our sights are set on claiming the throne of the Empire.

Meanwhile, Otto wins against the Venetian forces in the south and conquers Treviso and Parma for us. Since Parma is an Imperial province and Venice isn't in the Empire, we gain an immediate core there for reclaiming it. Treviso isn't an Imperial city, so we need to core it naturally. Its the perfect place for an Embassy for now. The extra infamy reduction will be helpful.

Portugal is having success with their own royal marriages. They inherit Pommerania, putting 3 imperial provinces in the hands of a kingdom outside of the Empire. A savvy emperor would reclaim these provinces as soon as possible to gain cores on them as well as a good amount of imperial authority.

England, Portugal, and Aragon all wage war on Granada at once. Their future doesn't look bright.

Bohemia wages war against Poland along with Hungary, who by chance fell into a personal union under Bohemia after the death of the prior Hungarian king. Our infamy has fallen to a relatively low point by now, so it may be a good time to wage war against the two of them again.

Forming a quick alliance with Poland gives us proper CBs to declare a legitimate war against Hungary. Bohemia enters the war in order to protect them.

Otto leads our second army through Hungary and occupies all of their provinces, but unfortunately he dies during a siege. Ferdinand takes our primary army north into Bohemia and begins to occupy land along with the help of Poland and Aquileia.

We demand more Hungarian territory as well as 2 Bohemian provinces in the peace treaty. The Bohemian provinces will penalize us for holding unlawful imperial territory, but our monthly infamy reduction is high enough absorb that and still give us a decent amount of reduction per month. We may get a demand from the emperor to return those provinces too, but we'd just ignore any demand like that. Any penalties associated with refusing to return a province to the emperor are temporary and will go away shortly after coring the offending province.

Ferdinand I passes away in the late 1450s before he has the chance to become Emperor. The Bohemian Emperor who was inaugurated in 1414 is still alive and well. If he would ever have the decency to die, one of our kings would take his place. Leopold is an exceptional ruler, but he is already in his 40s and his heir is aged as well.

Leopold has the necessary attributes to enact this unique Austrian decision. This creates a sophisticated banking and finance system that gives Austria a permanent monthly reduction to inflation as well as cheaper bank loans.

Enacting this decision takes some of the weight off of our master of the mint's shoulders. Once our centralization slider is maxed out, we may not need him at all.

The large alliance against Granada is victorious and forces the release of what remains of Castille. Granada is reduced to Andalucia and its African holdings.

Finally, the king of Bohemia and Emperor of the HRE dies. The electors are united behind Austria and crown Leopold as the new Emperor.

The Emperor receives a special casus belli against all non-imperial nations that are holding imperial territory. This CB lets us grab those provinces for next to no infamy cost, and then since they are reclaimed imperial territory we are granted cores on them. We'll be making use of these.

We also gain CBs against Imperial nations that have conquered other imperial states. This CB reduces the infamy for taking those provinces to the point that you can demand them in a peace settlement and then release them as a vassal afterwards for a net reduction in your infamy.

Finally, the Emperor loses the Imperial Integrity triggered modifier that all HRE member states receive. The Emperor receives other added benefits from passed reforms instead.

Imperial Authority is a number that matters to us now. The Emperor currently has 45 authority, but it costs 50 to bring a vote on a proposed reform. The methods of gaining imperial authority are listed by hovering over it. It'll be in our best interests to do whatever we can to gain imperial authority. One of the first things we can do is go to war with Venice over illegally held territory.

Venice has grown strong by picking off pieces of the Ottomans. They even finished off Byzantium and conquered Constantinople. Fighting against Venice is strange for us, because we can only support about 4 ships and the Venetians have over 40. This means that we're practically never able to march into Venice. The land path into Venice is considered a strait, so if its defender places their navy in the adjacent sea zone it blocks our movement there. I'm not currently interested in the city of Venice itself, though.

The war ends with us seizing the Italian province of Siena from Venice. Imperial territory is reclaimed, and for winning a war against a foreign power our Imperial Authority rises. Let's take a look at what we can do with that authority now.

With over 50 authority we'll be able to try passing a reform. We have pretty broad support across the Empire right now, but there are still places where our diplomatic relations could be much better. The electors are united behind us, at least. One reform has already been passed by Bohemia, so both we are Emperor and all of the member states receive the benefits of that reform. The remaining reforms are in the top right and must be passed in order.

This is the second Imperial reform, and the first one that we can attempt to pass personally. The first reform is completely beneficial to both member states and the Emperor. This one appears to have some drawbacks for members, but is much better for the emperor.

As we look down the list at later reforms, this trend continues. As you pass each successive reform, the Emperor is centralizing more and more power and authority in his own office while diminishing the powers of the member states.

Let's try voting on the Reichsregiment reform.

The first message tells us that the vote is occuring and what benefits it would offer, and the second window tells us that the motion passes at a conference in Savoy. If you don't see the second window proclaiming "The Diet in (random HRE city)", then the vote didn't pass.

Our authority is reduced by 50 and is now down to 5. We can see the icon for the second passed reform here on the HRE screen now and hovering over it will tell us how exactly it effects us.

You can open up the message window at the bottom to see how each member state cast their votes. Scrolling through this shows me that it was close. We only barely passed this reform. I have a feeling that many of the no votes were due to our sizable infamy that I really need to let decay. It will also help for us to keep our diplomats busy with handing out more gifts and marriages to every single HRE state until our relations are high with them. Maximize your relations with each HRE state before every vote. What exactly determines how a member will vote for you?

Things that will increase the chance that an HRE member will vote YES on your proposed reforms
Things that will increase the chance that they will vote NO on your proposed reforms
Now that we're the Emperor, we'll be spending the next update building up Authority wherever possible and passing reforms when its diplomatically feasible. The Reformation has the potential to make this easy, because we can force religious conversions to gain imperial authority. The question is, do we stay Catholic and crush the Reformation, or switch to Protestant and really stick it to the Pope by converting all of Central Europe?