Games · Strategy Games

Europa Universalis IV: Hungary’s Reformed Frenzy

It has been too long since I did an EU4 post, but not because I’ve stopped playing. I’ve got a couple of campaigns to catch up on, the current one being an Ottoman one where I’ve nearly got the entire world for the first time, but prior to that, back when 1.21 was released (and indeed I’m still playing on that as I finish up the world conquest), I ran a Hungary game, seeing as that was how the patch was named. And as the title suggests, it was a largely religious game, where I shoved my Reformed faith in the face of anyone who bordered me and forced them to convert… often not peacefully.

My opening strategy was to immediately release Croatia as a vassal. Partly because I think that’s more historically accurate than the default setup (although technically it was a personal union that was just a bit too close for Paradox to have in 1444), and partly because this gave me a vassal who’d have an easier time eating the Balkans than I would. I immediately annexed Wallachia, as that was my culture group, but I gave large chunks of Bosnia and Serbia to Croatia and by 1460, I was the dominant power facing off against the Ottomans. An independent Moldavia was quickly snapped up, as was a push to the east against Crimea, taking some provinces on the Black Sea and also rescuing a beleaguered but still alive Theodoro to have as another vassal. Which didn’t make too much strategic sense but I like befriending rare tags, I’m sure people understand. At this point, I won a substantial war against Poland to the north, who I believe had made the fatal error of appointing a local noble, so this campaign was already destined to go badly for them, luckily for me. The Teutons would follow and eat Poland’s northern half in short order.

Meanwhile Croatia’s lovely colour now had all of what is in the modern day the former Yugoslavia save those bits that start under Austrian, Ottoman and Venetian domination and though I loved their beautiful purple colour, I felt I needed those bits in my empire, so I integrated them and popped out Montenegro instead. I had taken Matias Hunyadi and used him to his full potential so I was also taking potshots and provinces out of the empire to the West, I was already powerful enough to beat Austria mano a mano and it wasn’t even 1500. As my full goal for this campaign was the Hungarian specific achievement, that was fine by me. I felt, with the name of the achievement, that I should definitely go the Hunyadi route and shun all Habsburgs. Meanwhile, Poland was reduced to the single province of Lwow, which I annexed in the year 1500. The worst campaign I can ever recall seeing for them, and I wasn’t even THAT much of a part of it.
I took aristocratic ideas early and combined with Hungarian traditions, that meant I was relying on some absurdly powerful cavalry. This meant that eventually, with that and the Cossacks estate, I would complete Winged Hussars without even meaning to, I had been thinking I’d do that in a Poland campaign. I’ll probably do it again whenever I do that game, but it was fun seeing my cavalry destroy everything, I’m used to them not being that much of a part of my plans.

Next up was eliminating the much weakened Lithuanians as my allies Muscovy tore into them from the other side. Once this was completed, we naturally stopped being allies as he became Russia and rivalries emerged. I still hadn’t had a war against the Ottomans, for over 100 years we stood, daring each other to attack, but then I struck.

And took a couple of provinces off of them, Bessarabia and the one below it. But first war won, the rest would get easier from here.

I then conquered loads of Austria, nearly wiping them out, but then the Leagues started and I didn’t conquer anything from them for nearly a century, so I ended up having quite a delay on that achievement because I just didn’t want to trigger the Catholic League. But I did end up getting a PU over Tuscany, who by now had most of Italy, which made me very happy. I also released Smolensk (who are a fantastic vassal to pick up and make into a march for their ludicrously strong cannons), vassalised Nogai to the east, and picked up Livonian Order (who turned into Kurland) to the North. I integrated Montenegro once I was done with the Ottomans, rescued Byzantium briefly before integrating them later (by that I mean pushed them out through Turkey and back to merely Arabia) and eventually released Armenia to get Full House. And then I got Trier as a vassal in the HRE. At one point I also went on a huge war spree and picked up Bleed Them Dry.

At this point I realised this was the perfect opportunity to get Guarantor of Peace, I’m sure that’s meant to be gotten by either Austria, Hungary or Poland for most players given you’ll be between all three named powers and so won’t have destroyed them but can outmatch them enough to guarantee, so I worked towards that. Russia and the Ottomans were easy at this point but France, the second placer to my first in Great Power rankings was a little harder. I outpaced them enough to guarantee them by the end of the 17th century and picked that achievement up. Finally, I annexed Austria once the Leagues disbanded and gained my goal for the campaign, Take That, Von Habsburgs, by owning all former Austrian territories. As I couldn’t do a WC at this point (I might have been able if I really tried but I didn’t want to really try) and had gained all achievements I thought were possible, I finished it. And then didn’t write a post about it for a couple of months. Next, my Ottoman campaign. My successful one.

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