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Total War Heaven » Forums » Mongolphobia Mod » Mongolphobia Swap Game--Venice, Milan.
Topic Subject:Mongolphobia Swap Game--Venice, Milan.
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posted 21 October 2008 21:48 EDT (US)         
Well, after a few bumps, finally we got this show on the road, Eoj and I. Lets see who will triumph in the end(I for one, have no doubt about the ultimate victor).

Turn one of Venice and Milan was nothing spectacular. The Milanses hurried to catch the Venetian diplomat for alliance with military access and both rushed south to lick the Pope's bum. Milan was clear in its early moves, for the rich provence of Florence was nearby, but Venice's move was not so clear. To get Zagreb will establish a nice frontier to the north yet it means getting uncomfortably close to those half-barbarian Magyars of EoJ. Expanding southwards against the Byzantines means lots of fighting, and my economy currently can't support a large scale war. Hmmm, could there be a rich picking not too far away?

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 10-21-2008 @ 10:30 PM).]

posted 21 October 2008 21:57 EDT (US)     1 / 62       
Turn 2. Venice.

The Milanese offered me a lucrative alliance proposal, which I eagerly accepted. With the two most powerful Italian city states allied together, why even the recreation of the Western and the Eastern Roman Empire is entirely possible, MUAHAHAHA!

Having no worries on my one flank I threw the dice and my Doge Domenico besieged the Imperial grand city of Bologna, in which the emperor resided. Naturally the Imperials were pissed but since they have low papal favor I'm sure the blessed one will turn a blind eye to my incursion.

"Dude, WTF..." was all that HRE emperor Heinrich commented.

Turn 2. Milan.

After the Venetians eagerly accepted my worthy treaty, I ordered my faction heir, Count Bernardo to besiege Florence. With some luck, it will fall swiftly, and my treasury will swell.

Just when I thought the wheels are moving my way, some rebels appeared next to Milan and threw down their gauntlets for a challenge. Hmm their appearance might not be a bad thing actually. My governer need some entertainment and flexing of muscles, but all that is for the next turn. I also sent out some spies to look out for man hunting princesses although I doubt they can arrive that fast.

Comments on my moves are most welcome.

I must admit, EoJ's choice of Denmark and Hungary puzzled me but come to think of it, the Danes got the best early game infantry and the Magyars got the best early game cavalry of all Catholic factions. Together, they are formidable indeed. Let us hope the Mongols will devour both, or atleast Hungary, alive. Having said that, I am entirely receptive to the marriage proposal of EoJ, as long as I receive a sizable dowry which must come with the alliance.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 10-21-2008 @ 10:33 PM).]

posted 22 October 2008 11:11 EDT (US)     2 / 62       
After all, princesses don't come cheap. Especially not with this credit crunch and whatnot...
posted 22 October 2008 17:42 EDT (US)     3 / 62       
Heh. Depends what kind of woman she is. Check her stats bandito. You don't want her to have a lover, do you?

Vini, Vidi, Vici-Julias Caesar

Slavery is Freedom
War is Peace
Ignorance is Strength
Quantity and Quality are the same.
posted 25 October 2008 04:43 EDT (US)     4 / 62       
Turn 3. Venice.

The turn began with a bloody start. The seige of Bologna commenced and the exalted emperor of all Romans, Heinrich the Chivalrous led its defense. He have sizable combat experience and a mix of melee and missile units under him but they are child's play against the prowess of the Italian Spear Militas. Not to mention the Doge's forces outnumber them.

True to his name, the chivalrous emperor charged out as soon as the gate was breached. He hoped to block the doorway with his bodyguards while his archers can unload their arrows. Alas, he simply did not understand the meaning of "cavalry_bonus_8". Although he fought valiantly, the HRE lost their emperor in a gruesome way that day.

The rest fled to the town plaza to make their stand but my own bodyguards cut them down before they can regroup.

Victory was sweet, although costly in terms of man power. Still, with Bologna in my grasp I now have the ability to train endless numbers of men for my next target of conquest.

There was one surprise waiting for me though. Apparently the HRE wasn't that much of a pain in the Pope's side and he actually dared to excommunicate the Replublic of Venice! No matter, at this stage of the game florins count more than religious favor.
"I cast thee out!"

Turn 3. Milan.

Having enough build points for just one ram, I went ahead with the assault on Florence anyway.

The defenders tried their best to block my way inside but through some brilliant feints and quick move on the part of my bodyguards and mailed knights, I surrounded the defenders and began a massacre.

The casualties were much lighter than expected, maybe due to the competence of dear Count Bernardo, my heir.

It seems my impudent ally, Venice acted out of rashness and got its arse excommunicated. We Milanese on the otherhand are much more subtle and more refined to the art of diplomacy. The alliance with the Pope was easily obtained.

Although the ruler of the Milanese, Duke Giorgio is nearing 50's he won't sit idle and let rebel scum have their way in the countryside. Milanese garrison quickly intercepted the lawless brigands and crossed blades.

This is the true meaning of the proverb "Getting the wrong end of the stick". Or lance in this case.

A piece of cake. Three cheers for the commander and his elite milanese militias!

With the newfound papal alliance, the city states of Milan and Genoa began it's oversea conquest, with crusade as an excuse. Honestly, what use is "good standing" with the Pope if you don't declare a Crusade now and then? The target is Tunis and my governer of Genoa, Cristiforo Rossi scrambled to get there before the filthy Sicilians grab it first. How will it turn up I wonder.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 10-25-2008 @ 05:12 AM).]

posted 26 October 2008 05:31 EDT (US)     5 / 62       
Turn 4. Venice

I must say, the swift taking of Zagreb by EoJ's Hungary comes as uneasy surprise for the Republic of Venice. Messages were sent between the two nations in a fast pace, and in the end, the republic acknowledges Hungary's right to the settlement, but with certain conditions.

The Imperials meanwhile were attempting to get revenge and covertly sending some pitiful forces into my lands; which was spotted by my priest. They will pay.

Turn 4. Milan.

The crusading force under Cristiforo Rossi arrived near the shore of Tunis thanks to the expert Italian sailors and will shortly disembark for glory in God's name.

Meanwhile, the spy I sent to the rich town of Dijon found out the place was already weakened by repelling a French assault. This could mean another ripe fruit to be plucked by the great Milanese. After all, we deserve it.

With my short term goals set in motion, I now have the luxury of puzzling out EoJ's mind. I believe he will strike East and grab more Rebel territories around the northern edge of the Black sea before the others do the same. There is very slim chance he will actually attack the Byzantines...well I will know more when his diplomat comes along.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 10-26-2008 @ 05:43 AM).]

posted 31 October 2008 02:19 EDT (US)     6 / 62       

Turn 5. Venice.

It seems the cowardly pig eating Imperial scums have stomach full of beer, and little else. They sent one of their precious princesses to beg for a cease-fire. Lenient as I am, I agreed to cease further hostilities; on the condition that they should give me their map intelligence, in which they had no choice but to agree.

Turn five already now and it was time for me too see how my brave Italian nations were faring against that of EoJ's. According to this, I'm constructing far more or expensive buildings than him. Not surprising, since those northern half-barbarians are still stuck with their dark age mentality.

When comes to the finance, EoJ has hardly spent his initial starting money. Me on the other had, teeters on near bankrupcy every turn.

Turn5. Milan

I sent a small force against Dijon in hopes of capturing it before the French. Luckily, France hasn't expanded yet as you can see from here.

EoJ is upholding his part of the bargain well and moved most of his forces away from Zagreb. With the HRE in disarray after my Venetian ally gave them a drubbing, could it be the next target of EoJ's Hungary/Denmark?

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 10-31-2008 @ 02:24 AM).]

posted 02 November 2008 23:09 EDT (US)     7 / 62       
It isn't economicly viable to attack me for several reasons- 1) it is unlikely I will go for his territories this early, as I'd of killed the swap game quickly if I crush him, 2) I am a buffer for the Mongols, polish, russians, byzantines, etc, 3) the balkan territories except for the black sea aren't the best in generating income (except Vienna, but don't tell him that), and I'll get to Constantinople far too quickly for him to catch up, 4) A trading partner will boost his revinue and 5) Horse archers.
--This is the assesment of EoJ regarding my threat to him. I must contest this.

Number one is a pure bluff or gross underestimation--What can yer Slav Levies do to me at this stage huh, EoJ?

Numbers two to four can be passed as thoughful explanations. I will be honorable in my conduct. Also, EoJ will benefit more from the trade than I.

Regarding number five--I have crushed the elite Mongol stacks in the Holy Land two years back with little more than Italian Spear Militias as the Venetians as you know from my AAR. Furthermore, compared with the Mongols in the mod that we are playing(which I can still destroy), your Hungarian Nobles will look like children with toy bows. Not to mention your shaky economy will go down the drain if you are forced try to spam them early on.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 11-02-2008 @ 11:12 PM).]

M2TW Ladder Leader
posted 03 November 2008 05:19 EDT (US)     8 / 62       
Err, weren't you two meant to be not looking at the trade secrets being discussed in each other's threads?
I quite like following this game even if it's not very far in, so thanks for doing it - but if you're looking at each other's threads does that mean that viewers like me will be spared the detail and strategy? :0(

Something else to bear in mind is that any battles between the two of you will always be autoresolved so being able to use forces well on the battle field doesn't matter (except against the ai). Obviously practice and knowing what the autoresolve likes would help - personally it mostly seems random, although cavalry is less powerful I think than in actual battles so that may favour you over the Hungarians.

Anyway, I'm looking forward to future instalments, good luck and whatnot.
posted 03 November 2008 20:34 EDT (US)     9 / 62       
You are absolutely right Swampy. I won't do "that kinda spying" ever again. EoJ is after all, an "honorable" fellow leader, and I trust our mutual secrecy will continue from now on.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 11-03-2008 @ 08:40 PM).]

posted 04 November 2008 23:56 EDT (US)     10 / 62       

Turn 6. Venice.

From this turn on, The Republic of Venice will begin the lock out. All roads leading to Venice will be closed. It will certainly hamper any epsionage attempts by all who wishes the Italians harm. Out of kindness, I will allow the Hungarian Princess a chance to get into North Italy before I complete the lock out. I'm sure EoJ will be grateful.

One of my fleets heads for Durazzo while another heads for North Africa, to completely seal off Sicilian expansion from all sides with the help of my Milanese ally. I have special plan for Constantinople as well.

Turn 6. Milan.

Tunis was besieged a turn ago by our gallant crusading forces, and now comes the time to breech their defenses and claim the settlement rightfully mine.

The fight was mercifully short and victory came with relatively small loss of life.

With such an amount of donation from the Pope, I can finally build a mine in Florence. Too bad my ex-crusaders will have upkeeps again.

My northern army is one turn away from Dijon and luckily both the French and the Imperials are having their dibs on Metz. Dijon will be MINE! Muahahaha! Milan's future seems most secure ATM.

My southern forces meanwhile, didn't waste time and swiftly besieged Cagliari while leaving a token force to garrison Tunis. Sicily will have no place to expand to the west now.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 11-05-2008 @ 00:10 AM).]

posted 06 November 2008 18:07 EDT (US)     11 / 62       
Are you going to invade the Papal states at any time?

Vini, Vidi, Vici-Julias Caesar

Slavery is Freedom
War is Peace
Ignorance is Strength
Quantity and Quality are the same.
posted 07 November 2008 01:34 EDT (US)     12 / 62       
The thought have crossed my mind as the Venetians, yes. Since we are excommunicated, taking Rome can have no more damaging consequences on the political front as the Venetians (Milan on the other hand, will have to back Venice thus breaking alliance with the Papacy, thus losing reputaion if it comes to that).

What Im most worried about is the Papal army. The Retainers of Death will cleave my otherwise-competent Italian militias spearmen a new one in a blink of an eye. I need mass cavalry to have any chance against those brutes. Then the is the super spearmen--The Papal Guards. If the Papacy build a Cathedral then I will lose all missile superiority. Those banana chucking Retianers of Famine will tear up my ranks like old parched paper.

So Papacy is safe from my forces for now...but not safe from my assassin's blade. GAHAHAHAHAHA!

Michael Jackson
posted 07 November 2008 22:57 EDT (US)     13 / 62       
EoJ seems to be busy ATM cause I haven't gotten any save games from him from the 4th, hmmmm. I guess I will take this time to finish my guide to horse archers.

Michael Jackson
posted 07 November 2008 23:21 EDT (US)     14 / 62       
What you could do if you are a nation with a preferati is attack and kill the pope and put your man on there.

Vini, Vidi, Vici-Julias Caesar

Slavery is Freedom
War is Peace
Ignorance is Strength
Quantity and Quality are the same.
posted 08 November 2008 01:14 EDT (US)     15 / 62       
bandito u and eoj may have a fight in a future. Take over Zagreb cut his economic

not again...
posted 09 November 2008 02:34 EDT (US)     16 / 62       
Zagreb is strategically important settlement, yes. However, its economy is not great at the moment. If I actually attack Zagreb, it will be when it is a nice fat rich town. It is a "hot" spot between me and EoJ, among many such as Constantinople, and Vienna.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 11-09-2008 @ 03:55 AM).]

posted 10 November 2008 01:31 EDT (US)     17 / 62       

Turn 7. Venice

With the closure of the Northern Adriatic by the construction of a Fort, I am now relatively safe from any blitz attack by the HRE, should they foolishly try.

The governor of Ragusa, Alessandro Selvo(nice name BTW) decided to flex his muscle a bit and besieged Durazzo. I didn't mind the Byzantines take Durazzo since I'm more interested in rushing Constantinople, but since they didn't take it, I will make Durazzo mine.

A fitting Speech.

And an easy Victory. Long live Venice!

Turn 7. Milan.

Christiforo Rossi, honored as "The Crusader". began the assault on Cagliari. He had fewer men than the defending forces but he had wit and cunning, and that was enough.

There was not enough time to build rams so our gallant host constructed 3 ladders instead. With those in place on three different locations, we spread the enemy thin and taking advantage of it, an archer unit managed to open the gates for the General and the Mailed Knights to charge through.

Slaughter ensues.

With minimal casualties, another victory for Milan, and even tighter choke on Sicilian attempt at expansion. MUAHAHAHA!

On the Northern front, Count Bernardo finally reached Dijon--a prized target, with his small host of town militias. With a dash of luck my wily spy managed to open the gates!

It is always fitting to give a good speech before a good melee.

The defenders had a quality unit for once, and the Rebel Mailed Knights tried their best to stop us getting into the town plaza, in vain.

Casualties were a surprisingly light, considering the poor quality of my force. With Dijon at my thrall, the Duchy of Milan now have the chance of rivalling France in the region.

According to the latest intel, the HRE is still busy besieging Metz and they basically have very thin defense around the region. The Duchy of Milan might take advantage of this and Take Staufen away from them, or at least take Bern. The thought of fighting the brave Swiss doesn't sit well with my current army though.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 11-10-2008 @ 01:58 AM).]

posted 13 November 2008 04:45 EDT (US)     18 / 62       

Turn 8. Venice.

The Hungarian princess finally managed to get her cute lil bun next to Venice. The Hungarians offered an alliance which I granted. Both Venice and Hungary benefits from such alliance, perhaps Hungarians a bit more so.

The small band of Venetian host travelling by land encountered a large troop of Byzantines near Thessalonica. This could seriously delay the converged attack on Constantinople. In any rate, I will use my navy and transport them direct to the target.

My southern forces by this time had reached Tripoli, with no Sicilians in sight. We will take the settlement in the next turn.

Although the Republic is still excommunicated, we are gradually earning the Papal favor. Bribes will get you anywhere, hehehe.

Turn 8. Milan.

Busy person as he is, Cristirforo Rossi wasted no time to get to Ajacco, the last rebel stronghold in this side of Mediterranean. Siege will commence on the next turn.

My good spy Chimenti Bossi who played vital role in (weird name, yeah...) spotted another tasty morsel. Metz, which survived a HRE onslaught, is now virtually defenseless.

The spy successfully sneaked in as a dead body.

Count Bernardo immediately charged out of Dijon to surround Metz. he recruited a mercenary band of Frankish Axemen, which will double as the garrison of the settlement after its fall.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 11-15-2008 @ 00:47 AM).]

posted 14 November 2008 04:59 EDT (US)     19 / 62       
Now u and thouse hungarian are alliance. Mayb u should have some Catapult or Balista. Because f hungary beat you. And surround constaintinople first. You should attack the city. And took it as your with hungarian help^^

not again...
M2TW Ladder Leader
posted 14 November 2008 14:41 EDT (US)     20 / 62       
A cunning plan with constanstinople there.

Bandito, how are you feeling about your economy? you mentioned having very little spare each turn a few turns ago.
Oh and do you have much on that Venitian island thats just below the greeks? From there can't you sail straight up to Constanstinople, or do you not have enough down there?
posted 15 November 2008 00:46 EDT (US)     21 / 62       
Now u and thouse hungarian are alliance. Mayb u should have some Catapult or Balista. Because f hungary beat you. And surround constaintinople first. You should attack the city. And took it as your with hungarian help^^

Very nice plan Patpat, but I dont have any buildings to train ballistaes yet. 1600 florins is a big sum on Venetian economy right now.
A cunning plan with constanstinople there.

Oh and do you have much on that Venitian island thats just below the greeks? From there can't you sail straight up to Constanstinople, or do you not have enough down there?

I wouldn't call it cunning as much as desperate. I need to take Constantinople simply because it will help me to completely block off the Hungarian expansion through the Aegean sea. The nice economy and the Swordsmith's Guild in Constantinople will no doubt be a plus.
However, I just realized there is a signinficant amount of troops surrounding Constantinople, easily outnumbers the forces I levied on Crete plus the forces from Ragusa. A swift taking doesn't seem like a possibility in a few turns. EoJ just might have better chance to get the city than me. If he takes Constantinople, then my grand plan of reestablishing true ERE will suffer a big setback.

Bandito, how are you feeling about your economy? you mentioned having very little spare each turn a few turns ago.

The economy is a big problem as the Venetians. I'm barely earning enough to pay for my troops and maybe construct a cheap building each turn. My so-far unmatched fleet is one big source of drainage. The Milanese which I also control agreed to give us 400 florins per turn but that doesn't help much either. I am hoping Constantinople will be the answer to my problem. If not, there are other ways of getting cash--from EoJ, muahahaha. You will see when the time comes.

The Milanese on the other hand is filthy rich. They are earning over 7000 florins per turn ever since the conquest of Dijon. Milan is currently overall ranked 6th in the world and fears noone. With such amount of cash, taking settlements using purely mercenary army is entirely possible from now on.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 11-15-2008 @ 00:52 AM).]

posted 16 November 2008 05:25 EDT (US)     22 / 62       
mayb you should change from 400 to 2000or 1000 that may help your venice economic a lot i quess

not again...
posted 16 November 2008 21:22 EDT (US)     23 / 62       

Turn 9. Venice

Two turns away from all hell breaking loose.

What my fleet discovered as it got next to COnstantinople wasn't pretty. The accursed Byzantines were waiting for us and they have 2 armies of half stacks nearby to reinforce the tightly held city of Constantinople.

Cristiano Selvo besieged Tripoli but it will be some turn until the ram is built.

Turn 9. Milan.

The Hungarians offered an alliance, in wich I agreed, for a total sum of 1200 florins. Lets see if they are willing to part with even such a small sum. It will give me a better picture for their economy.

Cristoforo Rossi besiged Ajacco but as with his Venetian counterpart, the ram will not be ready soon.

Count Bernardo left the besiging forces of Metz and begab scouting ahead to Bruges, up north. Note the French forces hiding in the nearby woods. If we can successfully take Bruges, then France will be isolated from the East. Currently French lands is my number one target as Milan as soon as turn 11 comes up and the AI goes rampant.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 11-16-2008 @ 09:32 PM).]

posted 17 November 2008 21:45 EDT (US)     24 / 62       

Turn 10. Venice.

One turn away from mayhem.

The Hungarians asked for my help to beseige Sofia. I agreed, seeing it was an excellent way to express my good will. Alessandro Selvo was dispatched from the vicinity of Thessalonica to lend the Hungarian King a hand.

My fleet has blocked the way on the northern and southern part of the Dardanelles, thus making it impossible for the Byzantines to summon any additional troops from Anatolia. EoJ will have easier time to take Constantinople now. I keep hoping that such generosity on my part will persuade him to sell the settlement of Zagreb to me. I offered him 6000 florins up front. I am open to negotiations.

Turn 10. Milan

The puny rebels of Metz thought their wooden walls could keep our fierce mercenaries out. They were dead wrong.

After a bit of slaughter, the settlement fell with miniscule casualties from our side.

My faction heir, Count Bernardo is still doing his conquering spree and besieged the town of Antwerp. Bruges will be next. With the wealth of Milan, mercenaries greatly speed up the territory grabbing.

My Duke, although old, has still some kicks in him and he began a journey to attack Bern, the only rebel stronghold that borders Milanese territories. No doubt the Swiss will offer strong resistance but Milanese are even tougher.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 11-17-2008 @ 09:59 PM).]

posted 18 November 2008 01:21 EDT (US)     25 / 62       
In EOJ topic it seem like he wont sell you Zagreb.
Will you going to take it by force0.0?
it seem you have block Denmark by taking Antweap that may cause EOJ denmark trouble. watch out for the french.

not again...

[This message has been edited by patpat (edited 11-18-2008 @ 01:22 AM).]

posted 18 November 2008 20:38 EDT (US)     26 / 62       
Thans for the tip Patpat, but please do not leak information like this again. We want to play this fair and square.

I have my Faction leader sitting next to Zagreb since turn 10, and if EoJ refuses to sell, then I have the necessary force to take it. He should accept it, since my offer was very generous, and considering we Venetians have started war for less.

The French will attack us but not soon. They will probably send a diplomat first and threaten us.

I like coastal settlements as Milan. I didn't really mean to block EoJ. He has the Baltic settlements to play with anyway.

BTW Patpat, do you favor war with the Hungarians at this stage?

What do you think Swampy?

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 11-18-2008 @ 09:22 PM).]

posted 24 November 2008 21:26 EDT (US)     27 / 62       

Turn 11. Venice. Allies--Hungary. Enemies--Byzantines.

The AI is loose!

The governer of Iraklion, Cristiano Selvo began the assault on Tripoli. The defender had numerical advantage but I had quality on my side.

Easy Victory. Now the Sicilians will have no Rebel place to expand to. Im pretty sure they will attack Durazzo or even Ragusa since we are excommunicated and that alone will make the Sicilians salivate like dogs on hunger strike. Perfect excuse to let them start war with me.

Meanwhile Antonio Selvo, son of Count Bernardo is a new kid on the block but he will prove himself if he takes Corinth, thus bringing me one step closer to total domination ( how I love the word ) of the Aegean sea.
Alessandro Selvo, still fresh from helping the inept Hungarian King to take Sofia, has been reinforced with Bulgarian mercenaries and will attack Thessalonica on the next turn. Too bad large portion of the Byzantine army is locked in battle with EoJ's Hungary. Easy as pie.

The Doge, after unsuccessfully threatened King Lazslo of Hungary to relinquish Zagreb to Venice, was persuaded to avoid conflict with the Hungarians and instead he left to vent his anger on the Imperial city of Vienna.
Coucillor Bartolomeou, supporting his father, also began a march toward Staufen. Excommunication never felt so free, so good.

One great thing about Retrofit is that you can change the name of your faction. Here is the righteous name for my mighty city state.

Turn 11. Milan. Allies--Papal States, Hungary. Enemies--None so far.

After the Rebel scums repulsed my initial forces under Count Bernardo, reinforcements under young Puccio Rossi, who had came out of age were sent to Antwerp. This time the rebels will fall.

Duke Giorgio, now 69 years old, doesnt like to sit idle and took some troops to the near vicinity of Bern. Should he besiege Bern or reinforce the thin Milanese corridor between France and the HRE?

The duchy of Milan, owning to their vast territories, is now known as the Grand Duchy of Milan. May all who conspire against our cause tremble! BTW, here is the top 5 nations of the world. Milan is ranked 4th, not surprisingly, but surprisingly Hungary is on the list as well, as the 5th.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 11-26-2008 @ 08:58 PM).]

M2TW Ladder Leader
posted 25 November 2008 15:49 EDT (US)     28 / 62       
Thans for the tip Patpat, but please do not leak information like this again. We want to play this fair and square.
I was quite tempted to make up some events in one or other of these threads to see if any more distrust could be built up - but it seemed cruel. I think comments like "he'll never sell X" are reasonable as long as they aren't too frequent and there's not any way for you (Bandito) to know that they're in any way true...

Attacking Hungry could be interesting - the other human factions are clearly the most threatening in the game so it may actually be possible to have a brief conflict followed by an uneasy peace once you've achieved your goals - if you can put down suitable threats / compensation. Diving straight into a war without notice could make things horrible on the negotiating table, but if there is an ultimatum and limits set on the fighting (e.g. "sell me X province within 5 turns, if not then I'll take it but not fight any further than that") it could be almost excusable.

Do you have any long term plans for the campaign (such as taking X to Z by turn # then moving to blah etc) or in fact have you told us this and I've just forgotten? Diagrams would be nice even if you don't trust us and give us mis-information
posted 26 November 2008 20:55 EDT (US)     29 / 62       
I am afraid I have been quiet about my long term plans from the beginning. My ultimate goal is to defeat EoJ, pure and simple as that.

I was (and still is) inches from capturing Zagreb AND Budapest when his Hungary ignored my latest threat from Venice in regards to Zagreb,(there is no way he could respond to my attacks for atleast 4 turns) but my sister, who is studying Buddhism persuaded me not to act in such a demonic way.(we are allies for god's sake). Moreover, such a balant back-stabbing while EoJ is completely defenseless will probably make him lose interest in the game, something I cannot afford. It also won't be as challenging to me, and challenge is what I relish.

I can say for sure, if he doesn't relinquish Zagreb after the Blakans is subdued, the Republic of Venice will cancel the alliance with Hungary. That will make the game more suspenseful. Mind you, even if EoJ gets Constantinople, I have the gateway to the Aegean sea. He may own the bottle, but I own the cork.

Milan is currently grabbing up as many Rebel territories as it can and Antwerp and Bruges are my immediate goal. After the taking of those two cities, I'm planning to expand to the Moorish Iberia, and British Isles. EoJ's Denmark will no doubt race me for this colonization game but since we are not allied, who knows what the crazy Italians will do? :P More so, we have the Papal blessings, something Denmark lacks.

Finally, it is fine if you or Patpat spread some misinformation just to keep the game tense, as long as you do to both side. This is where my uber Italian spy network shines.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 11-26-2008 @ 08:57 PM).]

posted 29 November 2008 23:05 EDT (US)     30 / 62       

Turn 12. Venice. Allies--Hungary. Enemies--Byzantines, HRE.

The Hungarians finally had taken Constantinople. Well, right now I can’t do squat about it. Let EoJ bask in his fleeting glory, for eventually all of his possessions will be mine.

I had my share of conquest to plan out. Thessalonica still had tight garrison but I have a good chance of taking Corinth, now my siege ladders were built. The odds were shown clearly against me, but pure greed can motivate men more than impending death.

Still, young Antonio Selvo is leading his first battle, thus an encouraging speech was needed to gird his men into battle.

My fine Italian Spear Militia and the Peasant Archers climbed the ladders from two opposite sides and the beleaguered Byzantine defenders could only defend one part of the wall.

The Byzantine Spearmen were better equipped than my spearmen but they did not have their steely resolution and after few moments of fighting, the Byzantines fled, leaving the gate firmly in my hands.

My archers were already at the walls and encountering no resistance, save for the arrows shot by the Sythikons, they unleashed their own arrows at the foe.

Once my general charged through the gate, his valiant guards caught the Sythikons and dispatched them easily. Only the Byzantine Spearmen were left defending the plaza.

With full knowledge of their deadliness against cavalry, I lured the Byzantine Spearmen with a few flights of arrows. In chasing my archers, they were ambushed by my own spearmen, at a crossroad.
Victory came soon after that, and the first Byzantine holding came under the rightful protection of the Most Serene Republic.

Councilor Bartholomeou, at the behest of Doge Domenico, besieged the lightly defended Imperial city of Vienna. The Hungarians highly annoyed his person with the sleazy acquisition of Zagreb, thus it was only fitting for the Doge to repay them in-kind. EoJ proposed that should I successfully take it, he might consider an exchange of the two settlements. Fat chance that. Vienna is worth three Zagrebs. I could ask him for additional florins to even out the differences…we will see how this unfolds.

The old Doge wasn’t sitting idly meanwhile. He besieged Inssbruck, another lightly defend Imperial settlement. The HRE ruler was a fool to snap up, and indulge himself with the brief peace the Doge had graciously thrown at him. He and his subjects will pay.

I also began to reinforce Durazzo for the Sicilian ruffians will no doubt have plans for it, and Ragusa, now they have no place to expand. This will give Venice AND Milan a good excuse to go to war with them.

Turn 12. Milan Allies--Hungary, Papal States. Enemies--None.

My diplomat finally reached Toledo with an offer of Aliiance, which the Spanish king was only too eager to agree upon. It is my hope that the Spanish will be a good thorn on the side of the French—people I don’t want to have trouble yet while I take Antwerp and Bruges.

Cristoforo the Crusader’s small army was repelled by the stubborn rebels of Ajacco, when they sallied. Thanks to the superior navy of the Grand Duchy of Milan, he was reinforced with more troops from the mainland and besieged the small settlement in the very same turn. The Milanese are not known to be quitters.

As the Rebel setlements dwindles, I have to seriously think about my long term alliance commitments with EoJ. There is plently of time to evaluate the ups and downs of the alliance...hopefully all to my advantage.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 11-29-2008 @ 11:15 PM).]

Lasting men
posted 02 December 2008 01:32 EDT (US)     31 / 62       
Venice should make a foot hold in hungury and move into constantinople and battle back hungry as venice is incredibly thin line and will be attacked soon at the look of it right know.

“We call Japanese soldiers fanatics when they die rather than surrender, whereas American soldiers who do the same thing are called heroes” - Robert Maynard Hutchins

“The notion that human life is sacred just because it is human life is medieval.” - Peter Singer
posted 04 December 2008 22:04 EDT (US)     32 / 62       
Good advice Lasting men, I will keep that in mind. And now...

Turn 13. Most Serene Republic of Venice.
Allies--Grand Duchy of Milan, Hungary.
Enemies--Byzantines, HRE.

With the Viennese defenders cowering behind the walls, it was up to my brave faction heir Councillor Bartolomeo to storm the settlement.

He had recruited some wild mercenaries, and did his best to control them.

The Mercenaries rushed with the ladders and the Imperials could defend only one wall.

Soon the Mercenary Spearmen climbed the undefended part of the wall and rushed to catch the enemy general, the Emperor Elect, Leopold.

Frightened, the Imperial bodyguards summoned the town militias from the walls to bolster them, and this allowed my Frankish Swordsmen to climb up and and fall on the flanks of the town militias.

The gate was opened and Bartolomeo charged inside. This decided the battle at once and Vienna fell with minimal casualties.

I sacked the settlements for some cash, which I desperately needed.

Doge Domenico also began his assault of Innsbruck. The Imperials had pure cavalry garrison inside but he had enough Spearmen to do the job.

As usual, my men rushed with ladders, but this time the Germans had no footmen to man the walls. Easy cake.

First to get on the walls was my archer militias, who used their elevated position to shoot at the partly visible general's bodyguards.

The arrows were some what effective, but still large amount of Germans remained. It was time to get down and dirty.

Victory! In 1 turn I took two settlements from the HRE and put the Imperial defenses in disarray. Should I push onwards and take Nuremburg or should I rest for I while....Hmm, decisions, decisions.

Alas, the euphoria of my victories were short lived when I spotted the largest number of Imperial force just a couple of turn away from Innsbruck. I need to think of something fast. I was lucky I had a spy around.

Alessandro Selvo, who still had no victory under his name finally beseiged Thessalonica. There is a danger that the enemy might sally before the seige engines were complete, but I'm betting on the number of spearmen who will give me the edge in such auto resolves.

Meanwhile I continued to pay tribute to the Papacy, just to put up a good face. I cannot offord to fight them at this point should they decide to punish me. I can't!

Turn 13. Grand Duchy of Milan.
Allies--Papal States, Most Serene Republic of Venice, Hungary.
Enemies--None so far.

Well, it seems the two Italian factions which I control are all lovey dovey with each other. Lets hope it stays that way. Milan is doing a good job of supporting Venetian economy and in return Venice promised to cede one of its settlements. Quid pro quo.

The attack on the rebel settlement of Ajacco begins!

Cristoforo Rossi, who was repulsed in his first attack, was in a bad mood, and he personally wowed death to the rebels, down to their last fleas. Every soldier was terrified of him.

After a nasty battle, the rebeles were finally all dead and Cristoforo's bloodlust was sated. Where will he direct his wrath next?

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 12-04-2008 @ 10:49 PM).]

posted 06 December 2008 02:56 EDT (US)     33 / 62       
How high do you usually keep the public order in your settlements?
posted 07 December 2008 21:04 EDT (US)     34 / 62       
Venice keeps its population around 100-120% happiness. It is forces are quite streched among the verious settlements and they are also excommunicated, which cuts off 20% happiness.

Milan, whose forces are also streched from the Tyrrhenean Sea to the North Sea, keeps its population around 130%-150% since they are not excommunicated.

Michael Jackson
posted 14 December 2008 20:58 EDT (US)     35 / 62       
Blast it all, some no good Internet Center PC swallowed my turn 14 screenshots when it suddenly restarted. Bugger had Norton GoBack. ARRRRRRRGH!
I will just summarise what happened but damn I had some good screenies.

All in all turn 14 was fruitful. Venice took Thessalonica (led by general Antonio Selvo and Alessandro Selvo), defeating the Byzantine garrison plus their reinforcements. I am thinking either to attack Nuremburg to finish off the HRE, or to attack EoJ's holdings should he declines my offer of buying Zagreb.

Milan had even better harvest. With the help of a spy, Count Bernardo and Piccio Rossi took Antwerp in one turn with only 16 casualties. Bruges will naturally be my next target.

I managed to find a copy of the description of the events I planned to post. Even without screenies, this should give you a good idea of what happened in turn 14.

Turn 14.

Most Serene Republic of Venice

Allies—Grand Duchy of Milan, Holy Crown of Hungary.

Enemies—Byzantines, HRE.

1. The 14th turn offered me a prospective foster son, one Rizardo Martinella. He does not have much combat experience but he is loyal, at trait which is hard to find among men. Besides, he is only 23. A whole life of fame is awaiting him, if he does well.

2. Alessandro Selvo, who has yet to win any fame for himself, couldn’t be trusted to lead the attack on cities as important as Thessalonica so I sent Antonio Selvo, the conqueror of Corinth to lead the army in his stead. The Byzantine garrison, led by a soon-to-be-dead general Theotokios Olaskos was further reinforced by 3 units of Sythikons. Horse archers might be deadly in the open, but in a siege, they are useless—a lesson Antonio was willing to teach them.

3. Antonio is a man of action and few words. Kill them all!

4. I used my standard multi ladder strategies here since the enemy had less number of foot units to defend the walls. To the walls, men!

5. The two Bulgarian Brigand units I recruited back in Sofia climbed near the east and the west gates, respectably. The reinforcing Sythikons were coming from the West and they soon pepper the backs of the Bulgarians who were climbing up the ladder.

6. The Bulgarians on the east side successfully climbed on top of the walls with little harassment and began firing at the enemy cavalry below. They will open the west gate for Alessandro Selvo’s bodyguards, who were stationed just outside

7. The gate soon fell under the battering ram. Valuing the lives of Italian men under his command Antonio threw the Slav Mercenaries toward the town center where they engaged the main body of the Byzantines. Slavs’ lives are worth nothing.

8. Seeing the troops inside the city aren’t doing well, the Byzantine Sythikons rushed inside but were intercepted by Antonio’s bodyguards before they could reach the plaza. Light horse archers were no match against the fierce Italian cavalrymen.

9. With their cavalry in disarray, the Byzantines sent their Spear Militias into the fray. The Slavs were shaken by this event and were on the verge of running away. Antonio anticipated that. The Slavs were merely fodder after all.

10. After few blows, the Slavs routed. The enemy general then began to pursue the running cowards but was caught by the real Italian warriors who were itching to enter the fray. I bet he couldn’t spell Uh-Oh.

11. The enemy general’s head was swiftly taken by the valorous Italian Spear Militiamen. Only few enemies are left by now.

12. The Byzantines were determined to fight until the end so Antonio obliged them by sending the rest of the arrows at them. Naturally the arrows were ignited to show the population of Thessalonica, any man who defies us will be so dealt with.

13. Victory. The price was right and was paid mostly by the mercenaries. I just love it.

Grand Duchy of Milan.

Allies—Most Serene Republic of Venice, Papal States, Holy Crown of Hungary.


14. The council was most impressed by the expansion of Milan into a grand duchy. They offered 1000 florins to show their appreciation.

15. The relationship between my ally Spain and me is going up nicely. France should be targeted by the Spaniards should the French crown decides to attack my domain in Western Europe.

16. Count Bernardo, with the aid of Puccio Rossi, is about to crack the toughest Rebel nut in Northern Europe—Antwerp. He was beaten off once by the insolent rebels and is in a murderous mood. My spy Bossi has managed to open the gates in this turn and the assault began.

17. The Count knew he was sending their men to accomplish a difficult task, and he gave a wonderful speech to lift their morale. Mercenaries though they are, these northerners are still human being.

18. He did not forget to mention his anger at the persistent rebels who had held out for more than 4 turns. Slaughter, is in Bernardo’s mind.

19. Knowing the gates are open for him, Count Bernardo planned a 3-way attack dubbed “Trident”. All the forces were divided up and allocated evenly on the 3 gates with the south gate having more men. This strategy will stretch the defenders thin, thus unable to contain our breakthrough. Only way to counter such a move will be gather in the town center for a fight to death.

20. The rebels, as expected, began to move towards the central plaza. But the Vikings who were fast moving, burst through the south gate and caught a unit of Flemish Pikemen still in marching formation. The pikemen were slaughtered, but there are still 2 more units of Flemish Pikemen, 2 units of Crossbowmen, 2 units of Armored Sergeants and Mailed Knights.

21. The rebel Mailed Knights tried a flanking move and caught the assaulting forces of the west gate from the rear but the hardy mercenaries under Bernardo’s employ fought back and killed them all. The rebel general perished in this exchange

22. Another unit of marching Flemish Pikemen near the east gate was caught by the Milanese generals’ bodyguards and was unable to offer much resistance before they collapsed.

23. With the Vikings holding the south gate, my Mercenary Spearmen dashed towards the town center, where they caught the crossbowmen, just as they were aiming to shoot.

24. The Vikings along with Frankish Axemen routed the pikemen and the crossbowmen at the south gate but there was the third Flemish Pikemen coming out from behind.

25. The last pikemen unit thought they were making a sneak attack but little did they know my Frankish swordsmen were on their tail. Assaulted from two sides, this pikemen unit routed easily too.

26. Those who managed to flee to the town center were intercepted and butchered gleefully by the general himself. No mercy to those who defy the Count!

27. Only 1 unit of Armored Sergeants left. They tried to get into the plaza but were blocked by the Mercenary Spearmen and the Frankish Axemen.

28. Denied a sanctuary, the rebels soon broke and I had a most wonderful victory. I have taken Antwerp with the loss of just 16 men! With such an accomplishment, taking Bruges will require no delays. Once the twin cities are mine…

29. The good news weren’t finished. My princess Fiora Rossi has successfully wrested away the French governor of Paris and ushered him into the Milanese fold.

30. Raoulet Poitevin, my newest son-in-law is an aged man, but he does have some good traits. Besides, he is an educated Frenchmen, not like those half-barbarian Danes or the Hungarians.

31. The town of Marseille is a very promising economic settlement. A pity it is in French hands. My spy discovered that it is lightly defended so I might take a crack at it. However, France is a strong nation and I do not wish to attack them alone. Perhaps the Grand Duchy of Milan should point their swords at far easier pickings, like the undeveloped Danes. They are suspecting nothing at this stage thus a sneak attack on their lands is entirely possible, with the help of Venice.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 12-15-2008 @ 09:44 PM).]

M2TW Ladder Leader
posted 18 December 2008 15:25 EDT (US)     36 / 62       
Have you considered trying to encourage any of Denmark/Hungary's neighbours to have a pop at them? If France has expanded into Belgium (you never know if AI sides will bother doing that quickly), getting them involved would be very handy if you can afford the amount it'd probably cost you to arrange it.

Not meaning to suggest that a fight with EoJ wouldn't be easy for you, but just that getting him to knock the fight out of someone else could work well if you can wangle it.

edit: crumbs, I hadn't realised you'd gotten that far North and grabbed Antwerp etc for yourself. cheeky

[This message has been edited by SwampRat (edited 12-18-2008 @ 03:28 PM).]

posted 18 December 2008 21:06 EDT (US)     37 / 62       
Have you considered trying to encourage any of Denmark/Hungary's neighbours to have a pop at them? If France has expanded into Belgium (you never know if AI sides will bother doing that quickly), getting them involved would be very handy if you can afford the amount it'd probably cost you to arrange it.
I thought about that but EoJ seems to have one step ahead of me. His immediate neighbour of Poland is allied with both Hungary and Denmark. HRE is almost finished. Mongols, who have Kiev, will fight with Russia first. Byzantines will still offer some resistance to him but with Constantinople gone, they won't be too much of a problem now. Only option for me is to entice the English or the Scots to attack the Danes. I have my diplomat rushing towards Antwerp region just for that purpose.
edit: crumbs, I hadn't realised you'd gotten that far North and grabbed Antwerp etc for yourself. cheeky
Yeah, I had to make my moves in the north as discreet as possible in order not to tip off EoJ. Right after I took Metz, I sent Count Bernardo to beseige Antwerp (the French really didn't like us trespassing near Paris but they can eat their socks) but he was repulsed the next turn, losing half his men. For about 4 turns, he patiently recruited mercenaries in the forests just south of Antwerp and when Puccio Rossi arrived from Genoa with reinforcements, they were finally able to outnumber the defenders. The spy played big role in opening the gates, otherwise it woulda been hard for me to take the defenders without major casualties.

I'm waiting on the EoJ's response in regards to Zagreb before I decide to attack him. Honestly, the continuation of our Alliance will benefit us both immensely. We both can expand at will if we faithfully keep our flanks secure; and trade will bring tons of benefits as well.
EoJ doesn't seem to understand this and wants to ruin his nation's economy and military just for a small town. (Milan WILL back Venice in a war and he WILL lose, can he not see that?) I even upped my buying offer to 14000 florins. I just wish someone can persuade him to sell Zagreb.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 12-18-2008 @ 09:10 PM).]

M2TW Ladder Leader
posted 19 December 2008 08:53 EDT (US)     38 / 62       
Would he lose quickly enough that the pope wouldn't be rather angry with you for attacking him? I suppose you have a good relationship with the pope (for the non-excommunicated one of your countries) then you'd last long enough, plus there's no guarantee that the pope could actually be drawn into battle...

Personally, if I were EoJ, I'd accept the offer - by the time you'd built it back up the purchase money could be used to build a nice army to take it back again... I suppose that'd only be if war with you was utterly unavoidable by not selling it.

Do you seriously plan to attack him over the place, or are you just frustrated?
posted 22 December 2008 02:28 EDT (US)     39 / 62       
I don't have the screenies for turn 15 posted yet but...

"ALLIANCE IN TATTERS!" will sum it up. Yup, Venice finally cancelled the alliance with Hungary.

Would I attack him? Definitely.

Right away? Maybe.

All I now know is that he flatly refused to sell Zagreb after all the delays. Enough is enough. He is not wrthy to be my ally.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 12-22-2008 @ 02:29 AM).]

posted 22 December 2008 22:26 EDT (US)     40 / 62       
Here are the Screenies.

Turn 15. Most Serene Republic of Venice.
Allies--Grand Duchy of Milan.
Enemies--HRE, Byzantines.

My economy is nicely going up, partly because of the aquisition of Thessalonica and partly due to the Milanese generaous donations.

ALLIANCE IN TATTERS! Enough of EoJ's whining. If he doesn't want to deal with me the soft way, then there is another way of dealing with him. Still, as a man of "honor" I cannot backstab an ally so first I will need to get rid of the alliance.

A relatively moderate naval battle ensued just to the west of Nicaea, where my superior navy trounced the Byzantines. Bosporus channel is mine, MINE.

My newly adopted general Rizardo Martinella is a couple of turns away from Nuremburg. The city itself is lightly defended but there are some HRE scouts in the field.

Cristiano Selvo meanwhile besieges Rhodes. It is a good base of operations for the [CLASSIFIED].

Turn 15. Grand Duchy of Milan.

Allies--Most Serene Republic of Venice, Holy Crown of Hungary, Papal States.

It seems EoJ never really trusted me. He is now allied with nations such as Sicily and France, immediate neighbours of Venice and Milan. As if those allies can help him. Bah!

Bruges is tightly defended, I already slipped two of my spies inside. Hopefully, they will open the door for me in the next turn for another easy victory.

Got 2000 florins from the Pope for getting rid of the Rebel heathens. 2000 florins is not much but Ill take whatever is given freely.

Used a single ship to block off the passageway between Palermo and Naples. This way those Sicilians cannot reinforce each other should they go to war with Venice.

Portugal took Zaragossa, to my dismay. The Milanese were wanted expand to Iberia and that town was suppose to be my stepping stone. Oh well, you gain some, you lose some.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 12-22-2008 @ 10:37 PM).]

posted 27 December 2008 07:54 EDT (US)     41 / 62       
Now I actually have this game, I've realised how strong the Italians are. I am dabbling with Venice now. I had been dubious of mainly militia armies, but then I saw Italian Spear Militia are actually better than Sergeant Spearmen, and as for Pavise Crossbow Militia...

But anyway, it will be interesting to see which of you and EoJ comes out on top.

I will download Mongolphobia eventually, but right now I'm busy getting to grips with the original game.
posted 27 December 2008 08:48 EDT (US)     42 / 62       
but italians are cowards... use a danish or scottish dreadlord with highlanderd/dismounted huscarls.

Yep, it's true, having no sig is boring. But so is this one. Which makes my point... relatively pointless.
Can a point be a point when it is pointless?
posted 29 December 2008 23:22 EDT (US)     43 / 62       

Turn 16. Most Serene Republic of Venice.
Enemies--Byzantines, HRE, Hungary.

Cristiano Selvo began to assault on Rhodes. He had two militias as well as a Balkan Archer mercenary unit.

Fitting speech for a person named after our deliverer.

The usual divide and ladder-up tactic.

The Balkan Archers scaled the wall first and began doing what they are paid for.

Rebel archers retaliate immediately. It's a duel with us having height advantage.

Cristiano charged inside soon after the first Italian Militia opened the front door. He immediately set off after the enemy archer unit. The Rebel Town Militias tried to stop him but were blocked by the brave Venetian foot soldiers.

Cristiano reached the archers. It was a massacre.

His deed done, Cristiano charged down on to the left side to the exposed left side of the enemy militias who were busy fighting. They were caught off guard and the ir morale plummeted.

A well earned victory. A small settlement gained but it is a very important place for my political design.

Rhodes is actually my gift to the Milanese Duke for helping us out through the economic hard times. If now for the Milanese, Venice would have gone bankrupt a long time ago.

Having a great victory in the south, I turned my attention north. Ricky Martin (Rizardo Martinella) was marching on to Nuremburg--one of the last imperial holdings. In the previous turn, my spy slipped inside nicely and thank the Lord he managed to open the gates! Attack!

The defender was only one young general--Maximilian Mandorff. Tough luck being you Max!

A fitting speech, but even lions use all their strength to go after even the weakest of prey.

Ricky Martin charged inside first and veered to the left with the intent of encircling the enemy general.

The Venetian peasants, armed with bows and crossbows, unleashed a powerful volley to goad the enemy general into attacking.

Maxy, being a youngster he is, charged right into my Mercenary Spearmen. He fought better than most Germans but was slain soon after.

Ricky Martin attacked the remaining Germans from behind after his wide encirclement and the battle was decided.

Though Nuremburg fell without much fuss, there is a serious trouble brewing just south of it. The Imperials have a total of a full stack worth of troops stationed there (with siege artillery I might add). If they attack, my newly won town will fall for certain.

Ricky immediately recruited lots of mercenaries available in the region. Atleast now we have a fighting chance.

However, all these fights were nothing compared with the biggest bulls-eye I spotted. The Hungarians, who are not allies anymore, have arrogantly placed their faction heir, along with most of their field armies, on a ship within Venetian controlled waters! Clearly they are a hostile force and must be destroyed.

Admiral Zusto, who has the overall command of the Aegean Sea and the Dardanelles, commenced the attack and within minutes, the Hungarian faction heir Istvan (along with his numerous host) swam with the fishes. First blood!

WAR!!! Yeah yeah. It's the Hungarians' fault.

Wishing to take further actions before EoJ retaliates, I sent one of my spies, Rimbaldo de Niro (call him Robert DeNiro) into Zagreb, where he infiltrates successfully.

Zagreb is developing nicely, but its defense is weak. Perhaps I can send my available men from Thessalonica to take it. Alessandro needs a combat experience in leading.

Turn 16. Grand Duchy of Milan.
Allies--Venice, Papal States, Spain, Portugal.

I must say, the Milanese woke up with a headache in this turn. Allies declaring war on each other? Just what it needs. Well, since Venice is controlled by me as well, I chose to stay with it over Hungary. EoJ better patch up the relationship though, cause Milan might get involved with this fight as well.

Boom goes our alliance.

Duke Giorgio unfortunately passed away and Count Bernardo succeeded him. From the look of his stats, Milan is in good hands in this turbulent times.

Hmmm, a Danish diplomat with an unpronounceable name wandering in my territory? UNFORGIVABLE!

Fear the Royal Analing! otherwise known as the Italian Bridge Molestation.

Even though I had two spies inside Bruges, they couldn't open the door to the settlement this turn. Good old ladder building ensues.

The Venetians donated Rhodes to us. At least they owe us this much, after all the baby sitting we did for its economy.

The Portuguese seems like an honest bunch so I extended my invitation of Alliance with them. Portugal, with my backing might assault the French and I needed another ally after losing Hungary. Win-win situation, for Milan.

By this time, you guys might have lost touch with the rankings etc... well here is the overall ranking of Venice, Milan, Denmark, and Hungary. I included Venice and Milan's diplomatic relationship as well.

Here is the military ranking. All of us, except the Danes are strong. Hungary's military rank will fall I imagine. Crusade is available!

Here is the production rankings. Venice seems truly revitalized after a couple ups and downs.
Here are some of the Crusade targets. Venetian settlements were on half the list but we cannot allow that, can we? Where should I direct the Pope?

And the winner is...Jerusalem! Still rebel held but not for long.

Now what are the meddling French doing here I wonder? Don't they understand the words "First come, first serve"? Guess not, judging from their womanizing behaviors.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 12-30-2008 @ 01:05 AM).]

posted 01 January 2009 21:18 EDT (US)     44 / 62       
After EoJ finally got over the shock of losing half his Hungarian field forces, he wrote a blasphmous letter to me. It follows:

The King of Hungary sends this message to the Doge-
Words fail me. I had written a page to you in order to try and turn you from this course based on honour and trust, but I realise now what I am talking to. You know you had no rights there, or provokation, and I feel sorry for your puppet duke of milan not knowing the truth. For you are a person to which truth, loyalty and honour means nothing, and I have no doubts that if Sofia was reversed the Italian would be laughing over the Hungarian corpse. May God save your soul.

To the Duke of Milan-
Fare thee well, Duke. I feel there is little point in continuing this charade- Venice seems to be swaying your every turn. May we never fight.

Denmark's message as follows-
Milan, where is my Diplomat? I have no doubts your hands are behind this. You seem to be spoiling for a fight.

What does this mean? The Hungarians were at fault in the first place but they seek to blame their incompetence as our fault.

Deny all allegations all the while doing what you deny--the first rule of a super power. So I sent him this.

From the eminent Doge of the Most Serene Republic of Venice, Domenico. To the King of Ungheria, Lazslo.

Before I send your toy soldiers to their dooms and crush your undeveloped nation into dust, I do hope the last letter of yours were written as a friendly prank. This messy situation, which is mostly due to the fault by your so called navy, has nothing to do with my plans or designs. You know fully well how sensitive we Venetians are about the safety of our borders, and serenity of our nation, yet you defiantly crossed the line (with an army to boot) as if we were still allied. Your arrogance is your downfall. The Republic offered you a chance to peaceful resolution, something we rarely do when insulted to this degree, yet you continue your madness. Most unworthy of a monarch.

From the Duke of the Grand Duchy of Milan, Bernardo. To Lazslo, ruler of Ungheria.

Buon Giorno, fellow ruler. It seems you do not quite understand about the situation. We, the Milanese are motivated only by one thing, money. Now, only reason I chose to stay allied with Venice over Hungary is the fact that we and the Republic share a great deal of our borders together thus enjoy a good deal of mutual trading, which is godly for the economy. Add to the fact that our borders are loosely defended while most of our forces are in Northern Europe means we have little choice but to stay allied with Venice. If you wish to take back the childish insult of how we, the proud Milanese are but a hand puppet of the Republic, and offer us a lucrative deal (I'm talking about five digit deal here), there is nothing holding us back from striking at Venice within 5 turns and gutting it from the inside. After all, those rabid dogs are excommunicated.

To the King of Danimarca. Knud the Second

Hello there, honorable neighbour. The Duchy have no recollection of seeing your eminent representative on any place we treaded. If you wish to make more political arrangements, then we certainly welcome your emissaries. There can be no talk of spoiling for a fight, since we know how fierce your army is.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 01-01-2009 @ 09:20 PM).]

posted 05 January 2009 21:44 EDT (US)     45 / 62       

Turn 17. Most Serene Republic of Venice.
Allies--Grand Duchy of Milan.
Enemies--Byzantines, HRE, Holy Crown of Hungary.

Congratulations! Ricky Martin (Rizardo Martinella) is married! May their children grow up to be strong men, worthy of the Republic.

Admiral Zusto, spotted another intruder inside the Republic’s water, this time Byzantines. Sink now, ask questions later is the naval policy of the day.

The Imperials lost Nuremburg without much resistance, but that means there are plenty of field forces (three in fact) to worry me. It is time to clear up the board.

First of all, the large force just south of Nuremburg. This Imperial force is commanded by a captain, and is composed mostly of Archer and Spear Militias. Should be a one sided fight.

Ricky Martin, who had to put his honeymoon on hold to lead their men, gave a wonderful speech.

The fight was, as expected, one sided. A simple flanking maneuver gave me an easy victory.

With a victory in his belt, Ricky immediately set off against the Imperial forces further south, this one led by a general named Siegfried Ermolt.

The enemy was camped on a hill, which unfortunately for the cavalry heavy Germans, was crowded by trees. My men began climbing, vary of the Imperial Ballistaes.

A nasty close quarter brawl ensues. The enemy held on to their position tenaciously but our superior numbers eventually prevailed.

VITTORIA! (victory) The Imperials are of no threat now.

Turn 17. Grand Duchy of Milan.
Allies--Most Serene Republic of Venice, Papal States, Spain, Portugal, Mongols.

Pietro de Mantua was adopted into the Rossi family. He is loyal to the bone, a trait that is hard to find among us Italians.

The Council ordered a diplomatic relation to be established with the heathen Mongols. Well, not that we fuss over religious differences anyway. It is all about how we can benefit from such a meeting.

Meanwhile, the hardest nut to be cracked still awaited us—Bruges. Its garrison was formidable, but just like Antwerp, I had grasped its Achilles’ heel. I had two spies already inside the settlement and as soon as the opportunity presented itself, they opened the gates.

To Battle! Duke Bernardo has TEN command points when attacking; a fact undoubtedly raised the morale of the men.

Just like Antwerp, a three pronged attack. Duke Bernardo and Mercenary Spearmen assault the east gate. South gate was the target of a unit of Viking Raiders, and two units of Frankish Axemen. Count Puccio led the west gate assault with the support of Frankish Swordsmen and Mercenary Spearmen.

“Who’s you Duke!” Bernardo yelled as he laid the smack down on the unfortunate defending crossbowmen.

On the west gate, a unit of enemy Armored Sergeants were forced into combat by the Frankish Swordsmen as the rest of the forces headed deeper.

At the south gate, our axemen mercenaries caught the Rebel pikemen with their pants down and hacked at their manhood with glee.

Leaving the crossbowmen at the east gate in the tender care of the Mercenary Spearmen, Bernardo lunged forward and caught another unit of Crossbowmen a block away as it was running towards the plaza. Butchery ensues.

Puccio Rossi wasn’t idle either. He and his guards intercepted a unit of Mailed Knights and took em one-on-one.

The other mailed knights were already in the town center, and I sent the Mercenary Spearmen from the west gate squad to attack them.

The Rebel Mailed Knights tried to hold but then Bernardo came from behind and soon there were no Rebels left alive.

So it has come to be known that the town of Bruges was taken by the crafty Milanese with less than 40 casualties.

Now the whole of Belgica, which was lost to the barbarians, is once again in Italian hands, after 700 years. Perhaps the time has come to reclaim the rest of the empire. Bernardo sacked the settlement, for money was in need.

With the HRE in a brink of defeat, the council of Milan decided that the Grand Duchy will aid Venice in their war with HRE. The Castle of Staufen, for its strategic position became an immediate victim of a siege. Assault will commence in the next turn.

With all the invasions running smoothly, I have only defense to worry about. Sure enough, the Moors have landed a large party of mixed force next to Cagliari. Blasted Sicilians also have a token force nearby. A concern than needs an aggressive resolution.

It so happens a diplomat of the Mongols was seen close by and I opened talks with them. The Mongols eagerly accepted trades as well as an Alliance. Although Mongols are too distant to be useful to my designs, later on it will be useful to deal with Poland and Hungary, both detrimental to my expansionist policy.

Since I attacked a Catholic nation, some palm-greasing to the Pope never hurts.

Oh, one of my naval captain has a name Baldassare. Bald-Ass? HAHAHA!

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 01-05-2009 @ 10:09 PM).]

posted 06 January 2009 04:45 EDT (US)     46 / 62       
I once fought a Venetian called Captain Maria.
The Mongols have only 'respectable' power? You must have gone wrong somewhere, bandito.
posted 06 January 2009 21:56 EDT (US)     47 / 62       
Yeah, I nerfed the Mongols back in v.2 so Russia will have a bit more of a fighting chance. Just wait until their reinforcements arrive.

Michael Jackson
posted 13 January 2009 00:12 EDT (US)     48 / 62       
The war with EoJ escalates!

Turn 18. Most Serene Republic of Venice.

Enemies--Byzantines, HRE, Hungary

This blasphemy immediately caught my eyes. The Hungarians dared to fort up next to me! The eyes sores must be eliminated. EoJ will be taught a lesson. As if losing one Prince to my navy isn't enough, he sent another to be butchered by my land forces!

With the help of Antonio Selvo with his troops in the port of Thessalonica and the Ballista I managed to train in this turn, EoJ's not-so-safe-now forces were assaulted immediately.

To the speech! Down with the Hungarians!

Antonio divided his men to assault from two sides. Those Hungarian Nobles are not going anywhere.

Soon, the Bulgarian Brigands, owing to their superior range, attacked the huddled horsemen like shooting fish in a barrel. The Hungarians do have good enough armor to take some punishment though.

The Hungarian prince Kalman, finally snapped and came out of the fort to attack my archers. Naturally I was prepared and sent Alessandro Selvo to block him.

The Slav Levies and the Italian Spears also arrived to surround the now isolated general.

Kalman was felled and his head taken. A bloody good trophy to the Doge.

The victorious Venetian spearmen then rushed towards the still open gate and caught one unit of Hungarian Nobles with their breeches down.

The horse archers were no match against the very pointy ends of the stick. Onwards to the plaza!

Victory in Doge's name! In the first land battle between Hungary in Venice, my forces demolished that of EoJ's.

As if any of them will survive. Thanks for the fort EoJ!

Zagreb--the settlement which was the cause of all--was infiltrated by my spy DeNiro two turns ago as you remember. Well he did an admirable job of opening the gates. MUAHAHAHAHA!

Resistance is light, but I cannot afford to be careless.

To the speech.

I love witty humor as it puts my men at ease. Success is assured.

Archers to goad the defenders into attacking...

Surround the oncoming defenders...

The epic battle at the square...

And victory, which came at bit heavier then expected. Oh, well I can find solace in the fact that EoJ's forces fared far worse.

The day of celebration is at hand, for the town of Zagreb, which EoJ kindly developed for me, is in my hand. I offered EoJ a letter of peace for I don't wish to go fight further than this. Will he accpet though? My terms were lenient enough.
The Sicilians are clearly unhappy with me fighting the Hungarians. I must prepare for their sneak attacks soon.

It seems EoJ is gathering huge amount of forces in Constantinople. I wonder where will he attack? I'm betting on Thessalonica. Can't be Nicaea, not after the drubbing my navy gave to him.

Turn 18. Grand Duchy of Milan.

Allies--Venice, Papal States, Spain, Portugal, Mongols

Another adopted general, one Giovanni Settignano. I'll just call him Nano. Welcome to the Familia.

Only worthwhile thing happened this turn for the Milanese was the assault on Stauffen. It was defended by the emperor of HRE, a-soon-to-be-dead-so-shall-not-be-named guy.

Climb the walls men, and surround the wurst-gobbler!

Death by my hands was always their fate.

Easy (and I mean easy) victory for the Milanese. This castle will bring me one step closer to the northern holdings of my ally Venice.

As a last note, the Moors are still around Cagliari. Hmm I do not wish to fight them yet. My ally Spain is already at war with them though. Perhaps I should make a try against Corduba or Granada.

Michael Jackson

[This message has been edited by el_bandito (edited 01-13-2009 @ 00:58 AM).]

posted 13 January 2009 10:23 EDT (US)     49 / 62       
wasn't there an only-autoresolve rule when fighting eachother?

Yep, it's true, having no sig is boring. But so is this one. Which makes my point... relatively pointless.
Can a point be a point when it is pointless?
M2TW Ladder Leader
posted 14 January 2009 14:09 EDT (US)     50 / 62       
I think it was agreed that they could fight each other's armies - the major downside is the advantage it gives to the attacker - it'd be a rare day if the ai won a battle in which it didn't have a good level of superiority
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