Since a German friend (Oerg866, if anyone knows him from Retro) built me a kickass new computer a few weeks ago, I dug up an Europa Universalis III: Divine Wind campaign I had started long ago but then abandoned since my laptop runs the game at a pace of several seconds per day even on the highest speed setting, and since I would need to wait 50 more years until I would gain cores on some regions I had conquered from my neighbours via complicated schemes of dragging them into impossible wars so as to give me a casus belli on them when they declined my call to arms and was being A Formal Request‐bombed for by the Holy Roman Emperor, the prospect just seemed too boring back then.
Now that I can run the game at full speed however, decades seem to pass in the blink of an eye, and I finally resumed my old campaign, whose save I had copied over. This was roughly the extent of my realm at that point: http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/59695 ... EE6229066/
(I originally started out as a 2‐province‐minor with just Köln and Westfalen)
A few centuries of expanding deep into France, colonising North America, swallowing neighbouring German minors, conquering parts of South‐East Asia, and trying to stay out of major conflicts by ensuring that there were enough small buffer states between me and any other power, and by only expanding in the HRE if the Emperor elected came from a weaker country (i.e. Savoy and not Bohemia), it now looks like this: http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/59695 ... 3EED9E140/
(Plus overseas possessions:http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/59695 ... F751B541C/http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/59695 ... 537ADF3EF/http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/59695 ... F46645696/ http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/59695 ... 22284B65E/
Most recently, I manned up and finally confronted Bohemia, the only country in Europe I considered to be a serious threat to me. Having seized a bit of land in the Caucasus to be able to attack from both size, for the Czech lands extended, frighteningly, all the way from the Baltic Sea to the edge of Anatolia, I declared war on one of its vassals, and thus launched the offensive. However, though mighty in size, I won most battles with ease, and my armies soon had overrun almost the entire realm, and those of Bohemia's allies—I did not bother to summon mine.http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/59695 ... BC50F7F77/
In the peace treaty, I demanded a handful of provinces for myself, I shattered its empire into bits, demanding the release of several nations, robbing it of a good third of its territory and cutting the rest into two. I now proudly consider myself the sole hegemon of Europe; the only other larger (but militarily vastly inferior) country that could pose some threat is Castille, but they are allied with me so I have nothing to fear from them. Especially not if they already demand my aid if they are merely waging war against the single‐province leftover of the Cherokee nation in their colonies.http://cloud.steampowered.com/ugc/59695 ... 6F0EADF7D/
I now plan to spend the rest of my campaign rounding the edges of my empire and cleaning up a few of the smaller states on my borders, most of which I had left alone in order to have a buffer against Bohemia, which is now no longer necessary, although, just to be sure, I will start another war against them once the armistice has expired so as to completely scatter its remains.
I won't form the German nation though, as I did in my previous session. (Not that I could, since it's already 1791 and there's not enough time left any more to gain cores on the few regions not in my possession already.) When I did this the last time, my care for my empire diminished. Playing as my anachronistic homeland the Electorate & Archbishopric of Cologne is something probably only I always do, and I am emotionally invested in my little realm. Germany, however, can be formed by any German nation in the game; it is, if you will, generic, it's no longer something I can relate to, it no longer felt like it was my very own empire. Furthermore, most of the regions you need to own as a requirement for forming Germany lie in Central Germany (or, after WW2, Eastern Germany). Still thinking that the reunification 1990 was a mistake, I am somewhat offended by this. For me, the heart of Germany is in the West, on the banks of the Rhine. But if this motherland of mine is, by the game's definition, irrelevant to Germany, what point is there in submitting my Rhenish empire to such a Berlin‐centric, east‐leaning construct? (Yeah, I understand that this is probably the way it is to give Brandenburg an advantage when it comes to forming Germany, but I still consider it a bit insulting.)
For a detailed visual history on the growth of my Cologne, see the screenshot gallery here: http://steamcommunity.com/id/ppachao/sc ... =app_25800