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Well, I decided to start this. Just last Christmas I bought Crusader Kings II, and pretty much almost all of its DLC. So, like with the cancelled Victoria II LP before it, I figured, why not narrate a playthrough? This shall be fun. On the time this thread was made, I owned almost all of the DLC that has been released at the time (Monk and Mystics was still as TBR), but I figured better to start now than to wait. Only DLC I was missing was a few music packs and the ebooks, so nothing that changed the gameplay.

For this playthrough, I'm starting with the earliest start date (769AD), and choosing the Kingdom of Asturias. My main goals are these:

  • Reenact the Reconquista, and expell the Muslims from Iberia.
  • Form the Empire of Hispania.

I'll also try to aim for some optional secondary goals in mind:

  • Expand into North Africa.
  • Obtain a high enough end score to beat the highest in-game records.

And a wild goal unlikely to really be reached (maybe):

  • Reform the Roman Empire.

I'm starting right away with my next post being the first update. So anyone reading this before that happens, please refrain from posting until that first update is made. Thank you.

So, when creating a new game, there are many settings to establish. I'm mostly with the "Historical" and "Default" options. And avoiding Ironman mode, since I want to manually save, thank you very much. And, oh yes, one main thing: No Sunset Invasion! Seriously, I'm all for going ahistorical in these kind of games... but an Aztec/Nahua invasion of Medieval Europe? Nope, the line must be drawn here! This far, no further!

The game has a lots of mechanics, and I'll try my best to explain in the narrative as they become relevant. For anything I miss or don't explain right away, feel free to look it up or ask me and I'll explain.

Anyway, this initial post will also host a table of contents with links to the respective posts. So without delay... let's begin, shall we?

Table of Contents

Edited by Acacia Sgt

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The Early Middle Ages started with the fall of the Western Roman Empire in the early 5th Century. The earlier part of this era saw the great Germanic and Slavic migrations across Europe, with peoples such as the Goths and Lombards settling in Southern Europe, the Franks settling in Gaul and Saxons crossing the sea and settling in Britain. The Eastern Roman Empire was violently shaken by the pressure from the Goths and Avars, and fought bitterly with the ancient Persian enemy. The rise of Islam saw the Arabs conquering immense amounts of territory in the Middle East and North Africa, and in India several great dynasties vied for dominance, with the Rashtrakutas rising towards the end of the 8th century. In the steppes, the Khazars grew in power, and in Scandinavia things were about to change in a way that was to affect the entire continent…

Prologue - Of Humble Beginnings

January 1, 769AD - January 18, 769AD

Spoiler

January 1

The year is 769AD, and our story starts in the Iberian Peninsula. Barely a little over fifty years ago, the land saw an invasion from the Umayyad Caliphate. It advanced across the peninsula, and north across the Pyrenes before being stopped by Charles Martel.

But not all of Iberia fell under their grasp. The northwest had established itself as the Kingdom of Asturias in 718AD under Pelagius of Asturias, and scored the first victory against the Umayyad in the Battle of Covadonga. It was the first battle under what would be later called, the Reconquista.

CKII%200-1.png

Asturias in the 769AD start date isn’t in a very ideal starting position. The Umayyad Sultanate at the south is more powerful, and very often they will try to finish the job of conquering Iberia. Don’t expect things to be pleasant at the beginning. As such, we’ll need allies to even survive. While religious wars in this game means that other nations can go to the defender’s aid without any other reason, that doesn’t mean we can expect them to do so. Not the big players, at least. So, what can we do? Well, give those big players more incentive to help us when defending, and more importantly, when we go into the offensive.

CKII%200-2.png

Oh, hi there, big players. These two can be a big help, but granted, there’s no guarantee even if alliances are formed. Karl, aka Charlie, being right next to the Umayyad means he can send troops quickly enough. The downside is that he’ll have his hands tied most of the time. Right now, it would be dealing with his brother, King Karloman of Middle Francia. And then, if he wins that, he may be getting in wars over yonder in Central Europe. At the very least, his brother can be a good substitute if he wins over Karl.

Konstantinos, compared to Karl, has more troops at his command and is less likely to be tied down in lengthy wars, making your chances of defeating the Umayyad much higher. The problem is, well, being on the other side of Europe. Especially in the early game, when he’s more likely to send his troops around the Mediterranean due to no ships to ferry them across. But for the moment, it doesn’t matter, because we can’t secure an alliance right now.

Meet the King:

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King Aurelio of Asturias, Count of Asturias de Oviedo, Count of Burgos, Count of León. From my understanding, some of his stats (and that of mostly everybody’s) are randomized at game start. At least, I think they do. It may not apply to historical characters. Anyway, it seems he got blessed in the Diplomacy Attribute (scroll icon with the 11 at the right), with all but the leftmost Trait (icons in the lower right) increasing it in some way. Unmarried and fifty-four years old, it seems his cousin, Prince Mauregato of Asturias, Count of Astorga, has his path set to inherit the throne. Right? Well, not quite.

You see, if we want to secure an alliance, we must do it through the old-fashioned way of alliance through marriage. Well, in these times, it would not be old. Yeah, king is already in his fifties, but hey, better late than never. But you see, to have closer ties with Francia or the Byzantine Empire, then that means betrothals.

CKII%200-4.png

Actual marriages can’t happen until both groom and bride are at least sixteen years old. For the record, they’re both twelve. I know, I know, a man in his mid-fifties marrying someone forty-two years younger than them. Well, get used to stuff like this, don’t expect much sugar-coating. Not even going to bring up the whole “it’s the 8th century” thing. Just look up about the widows of the American Civil War veterans, and my case rests.

Anyway, both choices will be a four year wait. Aurelio, already old, already is likely to kick the bucket in the next decade. We’ll see to that in a moment. Gisela is Karl and Karloman’s sister, hence my comment above about getting cooperation from either Francia. In comparison, Anthousa is Konstantinos’s daughter, but has plenty of brothers to inherit the empire in case Konstantinos also dies. At first glance, Anthousa may seem like the lesser option of the two. Less prestige gain, and she’s an Iconoclast, which might not sit well with the rest of Catholic Europe. And once again, no guarantees of Byzantine troops coming over across the Mediterranean as reliable help. It would be a gamble. But one I’m willing to take. Let’s see where that will lead us.

So how can we help ensure Aurelio will live long enough to get married and have at least one son? Through Character Focuses. These can have certain effects, which can overlap in some cases. Another way is to have a Court Physician. It’s a Minor Title that can be assigned (more on that later), and how effective would be depends on their Traits. If current vassals don’t have the appropriate ones, we can call for one through a Decision.

CKII%200-5.png

The Hunting focus. You know, fresh air, exercise, killing stuff. It’s mainly for the Health bonus, but the Martial one is nice as well, considering Aurelio has some to begin with. The Focus can’t be changed for a few years, but it won’t be a problem since it will be mostly through the waiting of the betrothal period where I can switch to a more helpful Focus. And as noted, searching for a physician is not a guarantee we’ll get a good one… but well, that’s up to the RNG to decide.

A more intensive focus on how I’ll deal with the Umayyad will be for later, because right now it will be more about working on Asturias itself. Starting with the Council:

CKII%200-6.png

The council can be both a boon and a headache, but it depends on how the balance of power and relations between them and the king are, and how power-hungry they are as well. In any case, just how good they are at their job will depend on their attributes, as each position relies on each of the five attributes. Just like how the king above, for example, his attributes could make him a very good Chancellor for his 11 in Diplomacy, but a pathetic Spymaster for his 0 in Intrigue (no, he can’t join the council anyway). Right now, everyone is around the 8-10 range for their position’s required Attribute, which is considered decent, except Adelfonso at 15, which is considered already a mastery. Not sure what the max number is. I could replace them with better suited members, but they can improve at their jobs. At least, from my understanding.

To start developing the realm, first, we must set the Crown Focus. I’m placing it in the county capital, Asturias de Oviedo:

CKII%200-7.png

I do this mainly because of the way researching technologies work. Technologies, or Advances, are divided into three categories: Military, Economy, and Culture. They can advance through two ways: using Technology Points, or through Technology Spread. Technology points are gained in various ways, like from advances themselves, construction bonuses, through the Learning and Martial/Stewardship/Diplomacy (depends on the category) attributes, and via Council actions. Characters can only use their points in their own capital counties (so for our King, he can only use them in Asturias de Oviedo).

Technology spread is as it says, progress on advancements trickles down from more advanced counties to the lesser ones that are adjacent, starting from the overall ruler’s capital. The speed can be increased through most of the same means as gaining points. Spreading advances can help to reduce the amount of points needed to speed up things when needed. As such, since I’m playing as the King, it’s best to quickly develop our capital county and increase the speed of spread, and let it trickle down across the realm. One important thing is to never have the country’s capital in a border county, since the spread also applies to adjacent foreign counties. And right now, only bordering the Umayyad, it’s something we must avoid at all costs.

The thing is, though, that every county in Asturias starts with the same technology advances. So, for the moment we won’t need to increase the spread until our own capital county advances. And this is where our Spymaster comes in. One of the Spymaster’s jobs that can be assigned is to go to a foreign county and research their technological advancements. This makes the technology spread to apply to the target county and my capital one, despite not being close to each other.

CKII%200-8.png

As such, I have Luitfredo go over yonder to Constantinople. To know which advancements will spread, you can check those gear icons. If they’re yellow and moving, it means the target county is move advanced in those areas, and advancements will trickle down until they catch up. Gray and unmoving means they won’t. As you can see, I chose Constantinople because they’re more advanced in pretty much everything. You can also note possible events that can be triggered. The chances depend on how good they are at their jobs. For now, it seems he is safe, as the bad outcome event only has 2.7% to trigger per year.

Another important aspect is Wealth. You know, gold and stuff. For now, I must focus in hoarding it, at least until I have a solid base to avoid falling below it. This early in the game, I’ll have to mostly rely on hiring mercenaries to fight Umayyad forces, and you know how that goes: Hiring cost + monthly payments. It’s time for the Steward to collect taxes.

CKII%200-9.png

And in the subject of gathering wealth, might as well give the King an Ambition centered on it. Ambitions are like self-imposed objectives, with a reward if it’s accomplished. Like Focuses, ambitions can’t be cancelled or changed for a while, and unlike focuses, some ambitions can fail. The War Chest isn’t one of those, but it obviously can’t be completed until the necessary wealth has been gathered. For a King, that’s 700 gold. We start at 88.

Another important aspect is our law structure. As the King, we can enact them, but depending on how much power the Council wields, they can veto it. Even if it doesn’t pass, you still wait years before being able to propose another law. For now, though, we wield UNLIMITED POWER. Well, just in the sense we can pass laws without the Council’s saying on the matter.

CKII%200-10.png

Revoking titles will be very useful. It’s a good way to remove unruly vassals. We can even go full tyrant and remove them all, which can be good for avoiding coups. After all, you can’t have angry vassals if you have none to begin with, aye? But… yeah, we’re not doing that here. Maybe.

One last thing to do before now focusing fully on dealing with the Umayyad, is to assign a job to the Court Chaplain.

CKII%200-11.png

Might as well, we must ensure to have good relations with the Pope, Stephanus III. Admittedly, this is mostly so Adelfonso has something to do. The other jobs don’t really do much, at least at this point in the game.

Now, let’s focus on the Umayyad. Currently, they control the rest of Iberia. Sometimes, they might try to expand back into North Africa. Others, they might retry intruding into Aquitaine. But often Asturias will be their prime target, which is bad for us. So, if we are to survive we need to scheme, prepare, and pray. But mostly pray.

Muslim nations have a unique mechanic to them: Decadence. The larger their decadence is (which increases with rulers with bad traits, large number of sons, and being over their demesne limit, and if the character has the Decadent trait), higher the penalties are. Penalties which include less army morale and less demesne income. Once it gets high enough, they can even get uprisings and rebellions. Unusually, 25% Decadence is the sweet spot with no penalties or benefits. Lower than that and morale and income is positive instead. Unfortunately, decadence is unreliable with the latest game version and the DLC I’m using, so we must employ a different method.

CKII%200-12.png

The good old “discreetly kill their leader” method. As mentioned in the description, higher Plot Power means higher chances for events to pop. This number can go over 100%, so I’m not entirely sure what’s the exact formula. In any case, killing the sultan has a starting Plot Power of about 10% with a decimal, so… yeah, this might take a while. On the other hand, the number can be increased by inviting people to the plot. Some will, some won’t, and some require incentive, usually gifting them gold, aka a bribe. For now, not many will. There are a few that need some bribing, but I want to conserve my gold for other more important stuff.

Another thing that can (maybe, since it’s also unreliable) help is revolts. The Umayyad are basically Muslim Bedouins governing Catholic Visigoths… and the latter aren’t happy about that. Catholic uprisings will happen, though the Umayyad have the soldiers to crush their revolts. In-fighting can also happen between the Muslims, but for now most vassals are content enough with the Sultan to really think of revolting. Well, let’s do something about that, shall we?

CKII%200-13.png

The good old sabotage. It’s going to take a while before it bears fruit, but it will be worth it in the end. In addition, I also raise my levies. Every boost counts considering our neighbors.

And so, let the game begin!

Nothing of note happens the first two weeks of January. After, however…

January 15

CKII%200-14.png

And it’s done, the betrothal was accepted. Now to see if both live long enough.

January 16

CKII%200-15.png

The only person that would accept to join the plot to kill the Sultan without needing a bribe. It only bumps the Plot Power to 14% and a decimal. Well, that’s better than 10%, if only slightly.

CKII%200-16.png

And it has happened, a Council member has started a Faction. Told ya they could be power hungry. Well, let’s wait and see if this goes somewhere.

But more importantly, I just noticed the Umayyad Sultan has chosen an ambition that can help me. If he truly wants to avoid going to war for five years, this means I don’t have to face the full horde of the Umayyad. Sure, his vassals can still declare war on me, but now I only must face a fraction of their forces, which is much more manageable. Well, if the Sultan is willing to follow his ambition. Or if he’s not deposed or killed (speaking of, that plot to kill him… well, it could still take a big while for something related to that to trigger anyway).

January 18

CKII%200-17.png

This was the physician that heeded our summons. His stats are… well, he has the Renowned Physician trait, and the rest of his traits don’t impact negatively his Learning attribute, which for a Court Physician it’s something we want. Is there anything of real note to say about him character-wise? Well, he has a pet parrot… and only one leg. Not sure if he can’t get more stereotypical for a seaman… no, I’m sure he’s not a pirate. Hiring him cost me 14 gold, but no big deal, considering his skill. And thus, we now have a Court Physician.

Speaking of, characters can obtain Honorary Titles we can assign them. Usually it’s just for flavor, though the characters do receive a monthly pay and prestige gain, and helps to slightly increase their opinion to their liege, so it does have its use. Not sure if there are other things, but I know some do. Like Commanders, to lead our armies, and the Court Physician, which is self-explanatory. There’s also the Regent, who will rule in case an heir ascends to the throne while still being a child. The first two do rely on an Attribute (Martial for Commanders, Learning for Court Physician) for performance. So, meet the crew I assembled:

CKII%200-18.png

Notice the three spots left open. I don’t have anyone eligible for Court Eunuch or Court Dwarf, and as for Court Jester I’m deliberating leaving that spot open. Unlike the other spots, a Court Jester loses prestige over time, and decreases slightly their opinion of their liege. I’m not bothering with that for so little gain, even if the penalties are also small. Anyway, other Honorary Titles exist, but those apply for other types of governments and stuff.

And this is it. We have almost 700 years ahead of us, and first deal of business will be dealing with the inevitable Umayyad invasions. May God have mercy on our souls…

Until next time.

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Ah man, I feel bad about killing such an awesome historical figure as Abd al-Rahman, but whatever. In my experience the Umayyads usually don't last a century before they can be destroyed piecemeal.

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I don't know, I've searched up, and lots of people complain they are unstoppable. Or at least so blessed in avoiding imploding.

Chapter I - The Hunt of the White Stag

January 18, 769AD - October 11, 770AD

Spoiler

Okay, time to march forward through the river of time. For now, there’s not much course of actual action. I’m simply letting things take their course. This is bound to change soon enough.

January 26

Another faction forms. This time, Prince Mauregato lays a claim on the throne. Apparently being the heir is not enough for him. Then again, the King’s betrothal is a menace to his inheritance ranking.

February 14

Veremondo, Count of Asturias de Santinalla and King Aurelio’s half-brother, has joined the faction to increase the council’s power. Both cousin and half-brother now, ain’t family relations nice?

CKII%201-1.png

The factions are still not strong enough to really start pressuring us, though. That may chance…

July 14

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Ah, a chance to establish better relations with a vassal. Refusing will cause relations to drop, so we don’t want that. Accepting doesn’t cause anything… yet.

August 29

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Better relations with His Sanctity never hurts.

September 9

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Oh, Silo, you wound me. After your invitation? Was that your plan all along, to seek the strengthening of the council through a pretense of friendship? Was it all a lie?

September 17

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So much for wanting peace for five years. At least he’s going for North Africa first. On the other hand, that can’t be good since it means he can get stronger. Also, note it says Holy War, but he’s attacking fellow Muslims. The thing is, Sheikh Kamal is an Ibadi. I guess for the Sunni, at least, they’re also fair game.

This could be a prime time to attack them… except that I don’t have the levies or wealth enough to do so reliably. Hmm… or maybe… ah well, I’ll see how the situation develops.

It also comes to my attention that Abd-Al-Rahman has married. And said wife is… my coconspirator…

CKII%201-6.png

Dammit! She was the only one willing to join without having to bribe people! Seems weird of the Sultan to marry a Catholic Visigoth, though, maybe. Anyway, I guess it’s back to square one for now.

November 4

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Oh yea, the gathering. This certainly took months. Well, the prestige boost is nice, but don’t think I’ve forgotten your ambitions within the council!

November 14

It is a great tragedy to inform… that Count Veremondo has passed away. Apparently from something he ate that didn’t agreed with him.

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So much for the King’s brother. He had no heir to his holdings, so now the county passes to the King. In addition, he was the Chancellor and Designated Regent… yeah, those positions have now opened.

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Mauregato, Baron of Castrobarte. As you can see, the necessary Attribute is much higher than Veremondo’s, which can be noted in the difference of the Outcome %’s, despite being assigned the same job Veremondo had. As a side note, Mauregato (the King’s cousin, not the one I appointed as Chancellor) is now the Designated Regent, if only for being the only eligible family member left. Oh sure, I can appoint someone else not from the family, but perhaps this can quell his ambitions of taking the throne.

November 19

CKII%201-10.png

Either the King hasn’t gotten the news… or he’s good at hiding his, well, I’ll let you decide if it’s happiness or sadness (truth be told, I forgot to check what was the opinion score between them). Either way, at least it seems the gathering is going without hitch.

December 3

CKII%201-11.png

But all good things must come to an end. Fortunately, things went well enough that King Aurelio can now enjoy a decent gain to his prestige.

December 28

Silo has seen the error of his ways, and most likely helped by all the partying, for he has now left the Faction to increase Council power. The power of friendship. Between that and Veremondo’s death, there’s no longer supporters for the faction, leaving it back to square one. But the faction still exists, so we must be watchful of it gaining other council members to its cause.

And thus, 769AD soon reaches its end without much hitch, and 770AD begins.

The year begins with a smallpox outbreak in Aquitaine. This could be bad, depending on where it spreads. Oh, sure, the Umayyad will suffer from it first, but it could still reach me.

January 13

CKII%201-12.png

For the record, I did start the game with supernatural events turned on. Because what’s life without that magical touch? One may think it breaks realism… but then again, wasn’t it all the rage during this era to believe in such things? Alas, mythical or not, a stag is a stag. The hunt begins…! Once we know for sure about the stag.

March 7 – April 5

Surprisingly, Silo and Aurelio had another gathering. They’re tight like that now, those two. Well, a gain of 20 prestige is good, but even better when obtained twice.

June 30

It has happened, the Karling brothers have come to war, for dominance of Francia! Will Karl win? Will Karloman? Who knows… place your bets!

July 1

CKII%201-13.png

As I feared, the smallpox has entered Iberia through Navarra and into Viscaya. This is bad. Characters gain the option to seclude themselves with their courts, to avoid getting infected. While secluded, people like the Council stop doing their jobs. Hopefully it won’t last long.

July 14

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Aha, there it is. We hunt!

September 12

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Or… we could’ve taken two months of preparations. Really? Anyway… for real, we hunt!

October 3

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The county of León. Still unaffected by smallpox, it offers the King some respite from the day to day affairs, for his focus now is that stag. Perhaps an actual benefit to his health can be achieved?

Alas, 20% is still too low. The RNG has dictated he won’t get Brawny. Which is a shame, because it had lots of positive parameters. But not is all lost, because all the practice so far has benefited his Martial attribute, if only slightly.

October 8

CKII%201-17.png

Alas, the stag proved to be the winner for now. But the adventure has not been for naught, for the experience it has given us. Someday, another opportunity will present itself in the future…

October 11

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The Ibadi coalition against the Umayyad isn’t doing so well. Alger is already under siege, as indicated by the smoke and catapults. Hmm, at this moment the Umayyad would have their forces over in North Africa. Maybe…

CKII%201-19.png

It’s a big gamble… but one I’m willing to take! Let’s go! Push the Umayyad out of Iberia! One piece at a time.

And that’s it for now. Will we be victorious in our first war? Will the Umayyad crush us? Well, the answer is…

Edited by Acacia Sgt

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Wasn't expecting to see a CK2 lp here! I'll be intersted in seeing how you fare against the inevitable coalition of Muslim nations you'll have to deal with in your war.

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Chapter II – Holy War for Navarra

October 11, 770AD – January 4, 773AD

Spoiler

CKII%202-1.png

The Warscore makes or breaks a conflict. Right off the bat either Attacker or Defender can choose the option of Surrender. As seen in the previous update, we certainly don’t want those penalties. Once one side reaches 50%, they can Offer White Peace, aka Status Quo Ante Bellum. Naturally, since the Attacker is the only one with War Goals (the Defender can’t add, far as I know), the White Peace penalties (also seen last update) apply and thus it’s only a good outcome for the Defender. 100% is the sweet spot to Enforce Demands (effects, as always, seen last update), which even the Defender can enforce if they are the ones to reach 100% Warscore. It will be an uphill road. So first, we must raise our levies!

 

CKII%202-2.png

For now, I’m only raising the King’s personal levies. The plan for now is to lay siege on Nájera, then into Navarra. I’ll gain warscore capturing them, and since they’re the war goal, warscore will start to rise on its own as I hold them. Opposite applies as well, the longer they spend uncaptured, I start to lose warscore.

Also, you may notice, the smallpox has broken into Asturias de Santillana. I don’t really fear much for the King if it reaches Asturias de Oviedo, because he is leading the troops into Nájera. Then again, the smallpox could spread there too.

October 31 – November 22

The four armies arrive to Nájera, the siege begins! I also merge into a single group.

CKII%202-3.png

The green bars are the morale of the armies. A siege ends once one of them is depleted. Events may happen that favor each side, and the Attacker also has the option to launch a more aggressive assault (upper right button), but it is risky. I can’t use it right now, in any case. Also, that icon with the bubbles just above the 1033 means smallpox has already broken into the area. This could be bad… or good, depending who is affected the most.

And thus, the siege lasts through the remainder of 770AD and into 771AD…

January 20

CKII%202-4.png

Smallpox has reached Burgos, and now my Chancellor is secluding himself. Well, no big loss. His work was in Navarra, where I am invading anyway.

January 28

CKII%202-5.png

Karloman died from natural causes (which exactly? Don’t know, game doesn’t state). Doesn’t look like it was because of the war between the Karling brothers. The Francias have united under Karl. Not the most… aesthetically pleasing borders, I’d think… oh well…

 

February 28

CKII%202-6.png

Wait, dude, you’re in the middle of conducting a siege! Or more like… what’s she doing there!? Anyway, no, refusing. Not just for that small Piety gain, but I’m not gonna have anything disrupting securing an alliance with a foreign power.

March 26

Alger has fallen. The Umayyad now have a foothold in North Africa. Which means… their armies are coming…

Thus, the other Ibadi realms have formed a Muslim Defensive Pact against… Andalusia. Yeah, it happens.

April 1

The King’s half-sister, Ermenisinda de Cantabria, has succumbed to smallpox. Geez, that’s all the siblings who are dead now. Could our King be next? God forbid! Speaking of, the smallpox has now reached Asturias de Oviedo, but the silver lining is that it is spreading through the Sultanate as well, east into Saraqusta and the Alto Aragón.

In another subject, Ermenisinda’s death means that her husband, Obeko de Álava no longer has a Non-Aggression Pact with King Aurelio. Yes, such things do apply even between the King and his vassals.

April 3

CKII%202-7.png

But in another note, months of being besieged have finally made their toll on Nájera, which has finally run out of supplies, weakening greatly their defenses. We’re so close for the siege to break through!

April 22

Most likely due to the above about the pact dissolving, Obeko has joined the Increase Council Power faction. Ah well, the previous people who joined either died or left.

April 27

CKII%202-8.png

Well, this is dire. The Umayyad’s army is already vast, but now I must deal with these guys too!

May 6

Munia Obekez, the King’s niece, daughter of the late Ermenisinda, has died from smallpox. With her gone, Aurelio is the only one left alive from his branch of the dynasty. This could be good or bad, depending on how you see things.

June 1

Catholics rise in revolt in Alto Aragón. Well well well, this could be good. I’d like to think they were inspired by our own attack. But for a very bizarre reason, despite being fellow Catholics, they are programmed as hostile, just because they’re still technically considered Umayyad. Great logic there, game. Anyway, as long I avoid crossing paths with them, it should be fine. The only worry is that the Umayyad troops may go after me first.

June 4

The siege is over! We’ve taken over the Wilayah of Nájera!

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Wait a minute... zero casualties!? I mean, that’s great and all but… really, zero? What’s this, Phoenix Mode? Like, what, the “siege” was simply that they isolate the place and stand there for months until everyone inside died since supplies ran out?

Anyway, this victory bumps the warscore in our favor to a grand total of… 4%. Yeah, not much. Still, more may come, for the army is ready to siege again. We may have gotten the capital hold, but Nájera still has other places to take over. And still no sign of the Umayyad army… I’m getting anxious…

Also, it seems the smallpox has finally reached León. Its spread is slowing down, it seems. It did hit Soria and Valladolid with the Umayyad, though. I think I don’t have to worry to my westernmost counties to get hit, maybe.

July 18

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Ah, finally some word from Constantinople. For the record, the RNG decided on Cultural Technology Points.

July 23

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The City of Logroño has been taken, bringing my warscore to 11%. And… zero again? But I clearly see there are less soldiers! But if there are no casualties… did they just, like, walked away? I don’t get it.

September 8

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AHHH, they’re here! Break the siege, run away!

It seems the time has come. I must resort to my backup plan…

September 10

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The Extort Subjects Decision is only available when having the War Chest Ambition. I choose to obtain from the peasants, since the clergy only gives 50 gold.

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Yeah… Fortunately, the RNG doesn’t screw me over, and we avoid the King getting Stressed. Doesn’t give good modifiers, naturally.

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The Borrow 300 Gold from Jewish Merchants Decision is… well, as the name says. Far as I know, the amount to repay will remain at 350 gold. But who knows.

It’s a shame to have only gathered 670 gold, just 30 below the 700 needed to fulfill the ambition. Since now, all that wealth is going to go to hiring Mercenary Bands. Mercenaries have an initial hiring cost, then the monthly pay. Pretty much always, hiring mercs will drain your coffers dry. Once you hit the red, the mercs will quit. Best case scenario, they just leave. Worst case? They outright attack you.

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These two are the ones I’m hiring. Mercs always start position in the capital county of the people who hired them. So, for me, that’s Oviedo. Time for a long trek.

September 16

The levies in Nájera made it to Navarra. Depending if the Umayyad follow suit or start to retake my gains in Nájera, I might have to move them out from Navarra as well.

September 17

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The Umayyad start to besiege my captured holdings. Well, at least that means I can keep my units in Navarra for a while. The mercs are still in Oviedo making their way to Nájera. Also, note the other hostile army. Those are the Catholics in revolt. I still don’t get why they must be hostile to me, but oh well…

September 28

Suneario, the Baron of Noreña (castle holding in Oviedo) has succumbed from smallpox. His son, Liuva, has inherited the title.

November 3

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Oh damn, more troops have reinforced the Umayyad, and have abandoned their siege to now actively fight me. Fortunately, they go after the mercs. As you can see, in response I’ve moved my levies in Navarra to reinforce the mercs.

November 13

The Umayyad intrude into Burgos and start to fight the mercs near the Barony of Castrobarte! Our first actual battle! If the personal levies can reinforce in time, we might win this.

November 24

The Asturian Army arrives to reinforce the mercs.

December 21

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Success! We won our first very battle. Our warscore gets boosted to 45%. As you can tell, winning battles is the fastest way to increase warscore, since the bigger the army, the higher the gain. Unfortunately, one of the merc commanders died in the battle.

And the end of 771AD brings hope we may win, and perhaps it would be great if it can be done in 772AD. Both soldiers and mercenaries now march into Nájera to finish what the soldiers began.

January 18

The whole group resumes sieging the last hold of Nájera. Meanwhile, the Catholics have taken over the capital holding of Alto Aragón. As a side note, Andjogli Raiders have showed up in Navarra and move deep into Umayyad territory. This could be also a good distraction for the Muslims.

March 14

The Umayyad’s African allies have finally reached northern Iberia. For now, they’re not much of a threat, but I must not get confident. The retreating Umayyads will regroup and come back to reinforce them.

In the meantime, Karl has declared war on Saxony. I think that will keep him busy for quite some time, or so.

April 1

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The Mosque of Calahorra is the last to fall. Nájera is fully under our control! Warscore reaches 51%. Now to move into Navarra. However, I split up my forces to intercept the enemy. Also, the smallpox is finally gone from southwest Aquitaine and Navarra.

April 1

 

Both the enemy and my forces clash near the Castle of Irún in Viscaya. I send a small splinter force from my other unit to reinforce them.

April 22

The small group reinforce the main unit at Irún.

April 26

My other unit reach Navarra and begin to siege.

May 10

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Another victory, my warscore is now 60%. Notice how the gain wasn’t as high as the other battle. This is because the enemy force was smaller and not as many casualties were inflicted. Oh well…

Meanwhile, the main Umayyad force is now routing the Cathoclis revolt in Alto Aragón. I don’t think they can be saved at this point.

An enemy unit going into Viscaya to reinforce has now stopped and started to siege the Castle of Palencia. I split my unit at Viscaya, sending the majority to Navarra and the smaller force into Burgos.

May 22

The siege at Navarra is reinforced. Also, the Umayyad have wiped out the Catholic revolt and are sieging back what they took.

May 27

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And now my Court Chaplain is… wait, he was in Roma! Yeah, they go into seclusion if their home county is afflicted, not the one they have a job in. Oh well…

June 3

The small unit clashes with the Muslisms near the City of Burgos. Also, the main Umayyad force has retaken Alto Aragón and is heading to Navarra!

June 20

The Umayyad enter Navarra and clash with my main forces near the City of Tudela.

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This is bad. The more join this war, the harder it will become.

July 4

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Haha! We killed an enemy commander! Also, the siege of Palencia breaks down, making us the victors (but those forces are fighting at Burgos, who was still besieging the castle?). No casualties on each side, so no warscore.

July 10

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And the battle of Burgos ends. Not much of a battle, so warscore only goes up 1% to a total of 61%. Time to move them back to help at Navarra.

July 14

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Seems the battle has been to the benefit of the King. That Defense boost is especially nice. For the record, in regards to that Opposite Trait Opinion thing, it refers to, well, any character who has the opposite trait. All seven Virtues and all seven Deadly Sins are present in the game as character traits, and naturally, they are opposites to each other.

July 22

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The battle of Tudela has ended, bringing the warscore to 79%. And as a bonus, we’ve captured the enemy commander!

There’s many things I can do with imprisoned people. For now, I’m going to offer a ransom. Yes, a ransom. My gold reserves at this point are now below 200 due to paying the mercenaries. Even if I don’t gain much gold, every coin counts at this point. Sure, I can Extort Subjects again, since the option can be done after a time, but I don’t want to go lowering the opinion of vassals all around the place too much.

July 28

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At least the Sultan is willing to accept.

October 20

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The Wilayah of Pamplona has been taken, warscore is now 84%. The lowered number of survivors despite the zero casualties is, naturally, due to the battle at Tudela.

October 27

The Umayyad army has begun to siege Nájera, with the intent to retake their holdings. My army numbers have gone low enough that now I resort to call on my vassals’ levies. They’re not much, just around 255 they’re willing to give, but it should be enough. They start scattered around the place, so I quickly send them to Navarra and hopefully the Umayyad won’t try to go after them. They will be arriving through the following weeks.

December 8

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The Mosque of Leyre is next to fall. Warscore is now 90%! Man, so close!

December 20

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Good, my Chancellor is ready to work again.

December 30

As mentioned above, he will now go to Zamora, since at this point Navarra will now be mine. Looks like the war won’t end in 772AD, but now ending in 773AD is inevitable. Assuming we are fast enough for one more siege before the Umayyad start retaking things, and therefore, lowering my warscore.

January 2

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The City of Tudela is ours. Warscore is 100%! Quickly, must enforce my demands! Just in time too, because one consequence of having the vassal levies raised for too long is that the vassals themselves start to get discontent about it.

January 4

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It is done.

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Our first war is over… and we were the victors. King Aurelio has gained the titles of both counties. We are no longer cut-off from the rest of Europe, since having Navarra means we now have a border with West Francia (you’d think they would ditch the West part since they’re now the only Francia) through the west edge of the Pyrenees. I quickly dismiss the army. Personal levies, realm levies, the mercenaries… all so I can have wealth gain in the green again. Also, you may notice the smallpox is mostly gone now from Asturias, except in León and Oviedo, since they were the last counties to be infected.

And thus, we are at peace again. Our focus for the time being will shift back to the realm itself again. What further consequences and developments, will happen thanks to the war?

Well… find out next time

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Gee, that Sieges with zero casualties was so evenly-matched...NOT! What does your Siege army consists of? Corrin, Marx, and the entire Nohrian Army with their 3DS games set to "Phoenix Mode"?!

As for the reduced numbers at the Siege of Logrono, I noticed that the reduction seems more or less the same as the units left in garrison at Najera, so it could be those that stayed behind.

Edited by henrymidfields

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1 hour ago, henrymidfields said:

Gee, that Sieges with zero casualties was so evenly-matched...NOT! What does your Siege army consists of? Corrin, Marx, and the entire Nohrian Army with their 3DS games set to "Phoenix Mode"?!

As for the reduced numbers at the Siege of Logrono, I noticed that the reduction seems more or less the same as the units left in garrison at Najera, so it could be those that stayed behind.

And then most likely sending the ones with capped Def and Res just for good measure, haha.

Really? *checks* Ahaha, I can't believe I didn't made that connection! Well, I suppose it makes sense. Would be so silly to take over the place... and then leave. Kinda like that island where Canada and Denmark once took turns planting flags.

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Congrats on surviving! Hopefully the rest of your wars go this smoothly, although it'll be tough if you encounter large coalitions 

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On 27/1/2017 at 10:38 AM, Excellen Browning said:

If you don't aim to become Karling, I will not recognize this LP as legitimate. *cross arms*

 

On 29/1/2017 at 4:18 AM, blah the Prussian said:

So alliance with Charlemagne now?

Maybe, maybe not. Might still take a decade or two either way.

Chapter III – King of Games

January 4, 773AD – January 24, 776AD

Spoiler

First order of business is to deal with the fact that we’ve inherited all the titles of Nájera and Navarra. My demesne has gone way over the limit, at 11/6. Going over our demesne limit means that anything we manage (tax, levies, etc) won’t be at 100% efficiency. So, I must give away the minor titles. I can keep the counties themselves for an exact 6/6 demesne, but the rest will be given away.

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Princess Anthousa is finally of age, so now she and King Aurelio can wed. That moment when you contemplate the fact the father-in-law is younger than the groom. Now, I must focus to ensure an heir can be born as soon as possible. First, I’ll have to cancel the War Chest ambition.

But before doing that, I’ll enact the Extort Subjects decision again to get some extra coin. This time the target county was Asturias de Santillana, and once again I choose the peasants instead of taxing the clergy, due to the Piety loss from the latter.

CKII%203-2.png

The Groom an Heir ambition is my choice. Since the requirement is for a suitable heir to come of age, then you can expect this one will take a while. At the very least, around 17 years. There are other ways to increase Fertility, one of which is through the Character Focus, but I still can’t change it, for now.

And now, let’s move forward!

January 6

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Ah, weddings… not a fan of them, personally. I’ve had enough of seeing marriages come crashing down in flames to really feel that excited with the idea of romantic love.

But well, enough about me. The top choice gives you gold, while the bottom one some extra prestige. I choose the gold, since the wedding itself is already giving Aurelio 116 prestige. I take the 23.56 gold over 50 prestige. Especially since…

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Who said you can’t put a price on love? The better relations with the spouse, the higher events centered on childbirth can trigger. Also, I increase relations as well with one of the in-laws. The oldest prince and heir, specifically. Konstantinos himself doesn’t have high enough relations to accept an alliance, so better work with the heir now. I can’t increase relations with Konstantinos himself because I’d need more than 400 gold! For the record, Prince Leon will need as much once he becomes Basileus, so yeah, better do it when he’s still a prince.

Notice that the gift itself seems to be the gold, not that the gold is the cost of a gift. Ah, the cold, hard, practicality. Gotta love it. Also, the fact that the increase is higher with Leon than with Anthousa. Hmm…

By the way, opinions are only one-way. Just because they got an increase towards Aurelio, doesn’t mean Aurelio himself had his opinions of them increase in turn. Yes, you have to work with two numbers when it comes to character relations.

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Let’s look at Anthousa. She’s got quite the good traits, even four of the seven Virtues. She seems to be specialized in Martial. The only negative thing about her is the Arbitrary trait. And… oh yeah, she’s an Iconoclast, no? Tsk tsk tsk, that won’t do. Constantinople this ain’t, dear, so off you go to convert. Fun fact, she wasn’t willing to before the “gift” of gold. The more you know…

January 24

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Much better. Even comes with a change of wardrobe, heh. Can’t have that two-way opinion decrease due to different faiths.

February 4

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Karl conquers Saxony. Dude, you’re already at the Elbe. How far will you go?

March 1

As seen above, Lombardy took Tripolitania. That’s another hit into Islam’s control of the Mediterranean.

May 16

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As you can see, one of the Umayyad princes is willing to join (without gifting him gold) my plot to assassinate his father. Even if we don’t see eye to eye, as you can also see.

May 18

I just noticed, but a small skirmish is happening between two Umayyad vassals. Something about increasing Council Power, but I doubt it’s for the Umayyad in general if it’s just these two vassals fighting each other. Ah well, if it keeps them busy…

June 3

Early June sees the smallpox finally being gone from Asturias. There’s still some in the bordering Umayyad sheikhdoms, but at this point they no longer affect me.

June 17

The Umayyad declared another war on the Ibadi Muslims, this time for the rest of Alger. Considering those two Umayyad vassals are still fighting each other, if the rest of the African Ibadi join in the defense of their brethren, they might now have a fighting chance.

July 23

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A fortunate day! We can soon have an heir… well, if the baby is male.

July 27

Our Court Chaplain, Adelfonso, is finally back from seclusion (took him quite a while, huh, considering the smallpox was gone almost two months ago). He’s being sent back to Roma to keep good relations with His Sanctity.

August 3

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Our Spymaster has discovered this (impressive feat considering he’s over yonder at Constantinople). I’m not worried. Best case scenario it’s just the guy. Worst case it gets the support of the Umayyad Sultan, who already has a valid Casus Belli through Holy Wars anyway.

August 19

I get a notification of some people arriving at my court. It’s a couple with a son from the county of Rosello in West Francia, though the husband is currently imprisoned in the Castle of Toulouse. My first guess is that the wife and son fled to my court, but why? Hmm…

September 3

King Aurelio now gets an invitation from Count Luitfredo to go carousing. Well, why waste this opportunity to have better relations with our Spymaster? Specially since it means less chances for him to backstab me.

September 14

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The Duke of Toulouse wants a ransom for the imprisoned dude. Well, I accept. Who knows who’s paying, because I’m not losing the 10 gold myself. Might as well, Rodericho has a claim on the county of Rosello. It might come in handy… maybe…

November 14

With not much happening, I try to focus on certain aspects, like increasing my wealth. Vassals pay taxes, but how much they pay depend on what is their opinion of me and the max amount set by the crown laws. For now, I try to simply raise their opinion of me through, that’s right, gifting them gold. Starting with Mayor Rodericho of the City of Santander. It really makes a difference, keeping vassals happy.

December 19

A Saxon revolt has happened in West Francia. Karl can field like about 7K levies now. Man, that’s insane, the revolt has little chance…

December 25

Seems the gathering with Luitfredo was scheduled for Christmas. Not a bad choice, to be honest.

What a merry way to end 773AD and welcome 774AD.

January 5

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Prince Mauregato has gone into hiding. Hmm, wonder why. In any case, he can’t fulfill his regent duty because of this, so I appoint Mayor Petro of the City of Gijón to replace him. This is mainly to increase Petro’s opinion of the King, therefore more money to receive from his taxes.

January 9

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Ah, looks like Aurelio and Luitfredo have decided to play Fire Emblem: The Board Game strategy. I approve. Aurelio has proved himself the winner. He Warp-Skipped his Lord to Sieze Luitfredo’s Castle, clearly. More Diplomacy… well, that’s always good.

January 21

Prince Mauregato is back from hiding, though it seems his son had gone into hiding with him as well, and he still is. Anyway, I decide to gift him some gold in compensation for no longer being the regent. Family and all that, huh.

January 24

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The gathering is over. I could gain the 20 Prestige… but instead I choose the bottom option. Which removes the Apprentice Boardgamer trait to gain the Game Master one. His first DnD campaign starts soon folks, sign ups open!

February 21

The white stag has been sighted in Nájera! A second chance to hunt down the beast has been given. Perhaps this could have more success?

February 24

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Time of rejoice, a boy!

Alright, crash course on offspring. Babies are, for the most past, blank slates. Attributes at zero, no Traits, nothing. They do start with a few things. A small amount of prestige, opinions, yes, even as newborns they’ve already judged their parents, little Froila here already has a disapproval for the Elective Monarchy Succession method the kingdom currently has, religion, culture, and a few select Traits. These traits are mostly tied with heritage and genetics. Froila starts with none since none of his parents had one that could be passed down (and even then, it’s not guaranteed, I think).

Children can have focuses like the adults, but it comes with two stages. First is the Childhood Focus, which they’ll have until they turn twelve. Then the Education Focus from then until they become adults at sixteen. As you could see, I choose the Pride childhood focus for Froila. Through all this, children will have Tutors, which depending on their stats, it depends how the children fare on. Childhood Focuses can’t be changed once selected, and if ignored, one will be assigned at random. Another thing you can do with children is to arrange betrothals, or marriages when old enough. This can be useful especially when wanting to get hold to titles to claim.

By the way, this isn’t exclusive to one’s own dynasty. You can do this stuff with the children of courtiers. Arranging betrothals and marriages applies even with non-children, though only for other people within your court, unlike children where options go beyond our borders, though still limited by stuff like, say, religion.

February 25

So as a start, let’s take Irmeltrud and Rodericho, the couple who came from Rosello into our court. They came with one son, Wimarano, currently one year old. But, shortly after they arrived, Irmeltrud gave birth to a daughter, Agnes (but mind you, Rodericho is not the father). Both are Catholics, but Rodericho is Visigothic while Irmeltrud is German. Wimarano and Agnes mirror this situation. Wimarano already has a focus selected from before coming here, so what I’ll do is give Agnes the same one her half-brother has.

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The Heritage Childhood Focus. Among them all, it’s the only one that doesn’t increase the chances to obtain a Childhood Trait. This is because it focuses more in assimilation. Since Agnes is already Catholic, my goal with this is for her to become Visigothic. Mind you, what Religion and/or Culture children end up assimilating into depends on the ones from their Tutors, but I think it’s fine, since almost all my court is Visigothic. Just very few of them are Suebi or Basque.

On the matter of focuses, the time has come when I can change King Aurelio’s focus. Now that he is a father it’s time to, in the words of Guile, go home and be a family man. By the way, this will put a stop to the events related to the white stag (you need the Hunting Focus for them). Oh well, the price to be paid to ensure securing a future for the dynasty.

Next order of business is arranging betrothals. This is the bread and butter of gaining claims outside your land. And with some luck and strategic plotting, we can expand our borders this way. The only one I won’t do this is for Froila, since I’m waiting for a more suitable choice *cough*Karling*cough* to show up. There is a huge selection, but they’re mostly limited to just the Catholics, with an Iconoclast here and there.

CKII%203-17.png

Thus, were the choices. Wimarano has been betrothed with a member of the Caliu Clan, from the Faroya aka Faroe. They’re Pictish, and the place is… well, there was no real reason to choose this place other than Uluen is in a direct line of succession, and that they’re close in age. Although, Uluen isn’t even in the top 5 of the succession ranking, I doubt we’ll inherit the islands… but it’s there, just in case.

Agnes was betrothed with Ragnachar Australdling, from the county of Mortain. Frankish, at the channel’s coast, just west of the Breton lands. Once again, my hopes aren’t high this will get anywhere without some more direct action. But then again, for low-ranking courtiers, this is already quite a lot done for them.

One last thing to do is more opinion increase to increase my income. This time, it will be with my Bishops. Bishops, at least the Catholic ones I think, won’t give you anything, neither taxes nor levies, if their opinion of the Pope is higher than yours. That’s the rules. For now, I’ll increase the opinion of Bishop Silo of Cangas de Onís, and Bishop Gonҫalo the Wicked of Silos. This will make them like me better than the Pope.

March 2

Both betrothal offers are accepted. Also, it comes to my attention that Anthousa reverted to her previous portrait. She’s still Catholic… hmm, oh well…

I also just noticed that the Emir of Seville has declared war of conquest on the Chief of Tangier. Just the Emir, without full support of the rest of the Umayyad. The Emir is the same Prince that joined my plot to murder his father.

April 26 – May 26

Another carousing with Luitfredo has started, and now Aurelio and he are friends. Thus, May 16 saw Luitfredo leave his own faction to increase Council Power, so now it’s in the hands of Obeko de Viscaya, the only other vassal supporting it. As an aside, it’s really something that the King can spend weeks partying and getting drunk. Ah well, 20 prestige and all that. In the meantime, May 19 saw the Chief of Massat declaring war on the Chief of Tangier as well. A Holy War, as the Chief of Massat is an Ibadi and the Chief of Tangier is Sunni.

June 2

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This happened. Admittedly, he does have a very good Intrigue stat to make an excellent Spymaster. He’s an Ashkenazi Jew, by the way.

July 25

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An intriguing plot discovered by our Spymaster. Airmanagildo is the son of cousin Mauregato. The intention is clear, she wants the competition out of the way. A little surprising considering the traits she has, but then again…

Anyway, I gain the option to imprison her, but… do I want to? Eh…

August 2

Count Obeko died of smallpox. Man, and long after the outbreak had ended. Must’ve been an isolated case or so. His county is inherited by his grandson, Adelfonso. It also opens the Marshall position, which I replace with Rodericho, the Mayor of Santander. He’s currently secluded, so I can’t assign him a job yet.

August 24

The Chief of Anti-Atlas has declared Holy War on… that’s right, the Chief of Tangier. Poor guy, he’s being attacked by a fellow Sunni, an Ibadi, and now a Shia Muslim. He must be feeling that Allah has forsaken him or something.

Also, by this point Rodericho has finally come out of seclusion, so he’s off to Train Troops are Asturias de Oviedo. He’s only slightly better at the job than Obeko was, but that’s still something.

October 14

Silo of Coruña sends another invitation to Aurelio for another gathering. Well, why say no?

It won’t happen until 775AD, though.

February 4 – March 5

Another excellent gathering. February 19 was more Fire Emblem Board Game strategy board games, in which the King showed once more his GM skills to emerge victorious.

May 4

Another invitation from Luitfredo. 775AD is the year of parties, it seems.

May 26

Ravya Benveniste, the Jew who had arrived at our court, died from poor health. Huh, poor guy. Oh well, he won’t be my future Spymaster.

June 7 – July 6

Another carousing with Silo. It went mostly without hitch, except for that thing in June 22…

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Apparently, there is a tolerance to drinking after all. Who would’ve thought. Ah well, that -5 is quite acceptable to take, even if it lasts years. That’s quite the long-lasting grudge.

August 25 – September 24

And now for Luitfredo’s party. September 9 was the strategy game rematch, but Aurelio held the title. I knew he could do it!

November 21

Eudokia Laloudios, King Aurelio’s mother in law, has died from the Flu. And she was only 40. Yikes. Poor Anthousa, it will be days of grief…

November 24

CKII%203-21.png

Or that. Distracting herself with sex. Well… it happens…? So much for her being Chaste. For the record, I don’t know why the icon for the Lustful trait is there. The option is tied to the trait, but Anthousa is Chaste and Aurelio is… well, neither Chaste nor Lustful. Anyway, thankfully 10% is low enough the King dodged a bullet. Still, it would’ve certainly been quite the way to go.

December 25 – January 24

Another Christmas gathering with Luitfredo. More games on January 9.

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Alas, he finally got me. Third time’s the charm, huh. Damn, need a better strategy than warp-skipping the Lord now.

In the middle of the party, during January 13, this happened:

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Ah, that moment when you contemplate just how many lives there are whose fates are determined by your judgement. Now, despite what the text says, imprisoning him is the one that gives you the prestige increase. Pardoning him makes you lose prestige. On the flip side, you gain the courtier, and he owes you a favor. More on this once it becomes relevant, because for this time I choose the bottom option, for the prestige. Still… how weird that it’s worded that way. Or perhaps, weird that the prestige reward/penalty doesn’t match the description. Oh well…

So, what does the rest of 776AD holds for us? Well, you didn’t hear it from me, but the word is out something happened on 776 in the northern country of a peninsula on the south of the continent.

 

So, until next time!

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Just now, blah the Prussian said:

Unfortunately, the images appear to not work.

Really? They load for me just fine. What do you see exactly?

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31 minutes ago, Acacia Sgt said:

Really? They load for me just fine. What do you see exactly?

It's fine, I see them now, it must have been a problem on my end.

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Chapter IV – Iberia 776

January 24, 776AD – June 18, 777AD

Remember that time, in the year 776, when a rebellion movement rose to overthrow the current rulers of the northern country in a southern peninsula? A rebellion led by one who held rightful claims to the country itself, no less. It was an epic tale that lasted months, well into the next year…

 

Well, sit tight folks, because we’re off to see that fateful event unfold!
Spoiler

January 25

 

CKII%204-1.png

The Pope has died. The Conclave has elected his successor.

February 26

Petro, the Mayor of Gijón, has died from the Great Pox. Since he was the regent, I now designate Gundemar, the Mayor of Burgos, as the new regent.

Also, I take note another in-fighting has sprouted within the Umayyad. This time over control of the Sheikhdom of Almeria. This is because Almeria is part of the attacker’s De Jure claims. Well, this might be the start of an Umayyad decline… but let’s see what else happens first.

May 1

A second Catholic uprising has rose in northeast Iberia against the Umayyad. With the situation that they are in, if it wasn’t for the BIG prestige penalty for violating the truce, I would be declaring war right now. I must wait 10 years whenever a war ends. The only way a truce can end earlier is if the defender now declares war. This clears out the truce so once that fight ends, I can declare war in turn again without penalties.

And perhaps because of the above, though it seems unlikely, is that someone arrived at my court. Algaҫi Qaysid, a Sunni Visigoth. He has a 14 in Martial, which could make him a great Marshall. Hopefully nothing bad will happen to him unlike Ravya. For the time being, I put him as a Commander.

June 22

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Becoming friends with the Council members is pretty much a must, so I must take any chance possible. By the way, the other option not only is a -5 opinion hit from both Silo and Adelfonso, but also makes Aurelio lose his Gregarious trait. And we certainly don’t want that, considering it increases Diplomacy and Vassal Opinions.

June 26

Our Spymaster discovers another plot. This one also seeks to kill the son of Prince Mauregato, and it comes from Fafinia d’Asturias, who also happens to be the Spymaster’s wife. Who is in turn his Spymaster in the county of Santiago. Hmm, two plots now... poor kid.

July 17

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Alas, they couldn’t become friends. And sheesh, for five years?

July 25

The Chief of Massat has won against the Chief of Tangier.

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But the thing is, the Emir of Seville and Chief of Anti-Atlas are still in wars to get Tangier. So now the dude must defend its recently conquered territory right off the bat.

August 21

Time to give gold to some more vassals. My course of action here is that any time after obtaining 100 gold, I wait and gather some more, enough to gift two vassals and not fall below the X00 mark. This time, it was Mayors Johan of Gijón, and Gundemar of Burgos.

August 28

CKII%204-5.png

So, the Baron wants that, huh. Allowing it is a +15 change in Opinion, but the Prima Noctae causes a rise in the Revolt Risk that lasts for 10 years. Yeah… no, I better not take my chances. I prefer that -10 Opinion instead. Not a huge hit to the income tax.

September 3

Luitfredo asks for another gathering. I’ve lost count, to be honest. XD

September 5

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Oh-uh, seems Prince Mauregato has had enough, and wants to commit Regicide! 26% isn’t that much. If we don’t capture him, at best he flees, at worst he fights. Hmm…

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Well, that’s that.

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My personal levies have rose to crush this uprising. I wouldn’t worry much about Mauregato. He probably is going to be distracted fighting bandits or something. Then imprisoned and escaping from the castle, then try to flee south into the neighboring country... wait a minute…

September 18

First fight begins at the castle of Ponferrada.

September 20 – October 13

More troops arrive to reinforce the battle.

October 18

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Total rout. Since that was the entirety of Mauregato’s levies, Warscore jumps to 57% even if they were only 251 soldiers.

Mauregato has probably fled south as we start to lay siege on the castle, in the meantime he’ll head across the Umayyad border, then back into Asturias and through the mountains of Astorga to relocate in a city or something…

October 20

CKII%204-10.png

An interesting proposition. I could get 10 prestige from turning him down. But I decide to accept. And then I see I made the right choice, since he as 20 in Martial! For now, I make him a Commander like with Algaҫi.

October 22 – November 2

The last troops arrive at Astorga to help in the siege.

December 25 – January 24

Luitfredo’s party starts once more during Christmas. I would like to think the game is deliberately doing this, but I don’t know. Three times could still be just a coincidence.

Well, Santiago is not far from Astorga… the King could easily slip away from overseeing the siege to go carousing, heh. And thus, 777AD begins.

January 9 saw some more board games, but Luitfredo proved himself the victor twice now. Can’t say I’ve kept track of the score but I think they’re tied now…? Ah, who knows…

Just at the very last day of the party we receive grave news! Rodericho, our Marshall and the Mayor of Santader, has died from Great Pox. It’s a prime time to promote Suneario and put that 20 Martial to use. However, since he’s on the field leading troops, I can’t assign him a job, yet.

January 31

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Oh man, the siege isn’t doing well.

April 26 – May 26

Aurelio goes to another gathering with Luitfredo.

April 29 saw the siege on Ponferrada over.

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Hold it! 14.41!? What, did the limbless Black Knight was part of the defenders or something? So much for his NONE SHALL PASS…

Warscore is now 88%, a big jump again because there’s only one county to siege. Onward to the next siege…

May 11 sees Luitfredo winning again at game time. Tsk, Aurelio, seems you can’t outsmart your own Spymaster. Who would’ve thought.

May 18 has the Emir of Seville triumph and take Tangier.

CKII%204-13.png

Just the one area, apparently. But as you can see, the Chief of Anti-Atlas is still waging war for his piece. The Chief of Mussat must be regretting it already…

Also, I should bring up the two Umayyad vassals in northeast Iberia have finally stopped fighting. Hmm, no good if the Sultanate starts to stabilize.

May 30

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Well, that didn’t take long. Also, the Catholic revolt got crushed. And considering I just got two Catholics arriving at my court, I take it they’re refugees.

June 17

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The City of Tahra Bembibre falls. Warscore is now 100%. Now I can force Prince Leif Mauregato to surrender.

June 18

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And thus, the rebellion got crushed. What? What do you mean that’s not how the uprising of 776 ended?

Now, this is a good time as any. Our score is finally over 1000. The game has a scoreboard, of sorts, where it grabs many historical dynasties and assigns them a score. Now that we’re over 1000…

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You can check the list and the game itself gives you these messages any time you Quit or Resign. This is just the first step. There’s a whole ladder to climb… and we’ll make it as close to the top as we can! We still have some centuries years left, after all…

I know, I know, but the moment I saw what was happening, the state of Iberia, and when it was happening… I couldn’t resist, hehehe.

 

Well, until next time.

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Chapter V – Divide and Conquer

June 18, 777AD – August 15, 781AD

Spoiler

So, first order of business is what to do with imprisoned Prince Mauregato. Strip him of his titles? Execute him? Throw him in an oubliette? Combination of the before?

 

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Nah, I’m going to be merciful. For comparison, being imprisoned means the Diplomacy penalty is -10, and a -1 to Health.

Now, let’s get on to business.

Looking at my Plot to kill the Umayyad sultan, I see I can invite the guy who staged the failed Catholic uprisings. Well, makes sense.

July 4

The guy, Aloito, accepts.

It is only months later in October when I realize the guy has left the Plot. He probably died. Maybe I just don’t know how to do it better, but it’s hard to check up on dead people if they aren’t part of the family lineage of people currently alive.

November 7

An Umayyad Emir has declared independence!

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The Saadid Emirate. Composed of five sheikhdoms: Calatayud, Salaqusta, Albarracin, Larida, and Turtusha. It’s not fully independent yet, they need to win an independence war against the Umayyad first. But, they already are considered independent when it comes to stuff like casus bellis, so we can declare Holy War on them. The issue is…

November 8

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Being hostile with others means, best to my knowledge, that fights will happen if levies from both sides meet, even if they’re not at war. In any case, the Umayyad’s war with the Ibadi Muslims is still going on, so I can count on that as a distraction. Also, only three of the five sheikhdoms are De Jure Aragón, so if I do win, I won’t take the whole of Saadid. Aragón, de jure, is composed of four counties/sheikhdoms, but the Umayyad vassal that holds the last one (Alto Aragón) remained loyal to the Sultan. We’re probably going to have to take it in a separate war later.

CKII%205-4.png

The Saadid only have about 500-600 levies. My concern here is not if I can beat them, but rather, if I can beat them fast enough before the Umayyad can reconquer them.

November 20

First battle at Saraqusta. The rest of the army arrives to reinforce throughout December.

December 27

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The battle at the Mosque of Caspe ends. Warscore is now 6%. At this point I don’t stop to siege. The rest of the Saadid forces are gathering in Larida. I’m moving my forces to fight them there.

And then, we…

CKII%205-6.png

 

 

What.

 

Karl, you’re… why are you defending an…

Oh, I get it. You know I’m attacking them, so you want to ensure I can continue to attacking them by ensuring their independence from the Umayyad. Ah, good old scheme

 

No, I have no real clue why Karl is defending the guy. Maybe I am right and the above is what Karl’s AI is doing. Or Karl was going to declare war on them himself but needs them independent. Who knows! The important thing is that this is helpful to me. Karl is not hostile to me, since he’s only defending the Saadid from the Umayyad, not from me. I know, I know, but it’s happening and I’m not letting this chance pass by.

Peculiar situation to enter 778AD…

January 19

Clash of forces at Larida. Reinforcements come through until February 2.

February 15

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The fight at the Mosque of Solsona ends. They certainly barely dent our forces, aye? Warscore is now 23%.

April 23

Rodericho and Ilmeltrud got a daughter. You know the drill. Assign a childhood focus and a betrothal.

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The Leodwalding are Anglo-Saxons over yonder in Carrick, found just south of the Scottish lands. The betrothal gets accepted on May 2.

May 30

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Well, can’t let friends down. The top option lowered his opinion, while the middle one does increase it, but not as much as the bottom one, which was my choice.

July 23

Anthousa gets pregnant again.

August 15

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The Wilayah of Larida falls. Warscore is now 27%. Seems the defenders had someone missing a limb or something, to have 0.86 of a man with them.

In the meantime, …

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Karl’s forces are already at work. At this point I know I’ll succeed if only because everybody will be busy with each other to pay attention to me.

September 21

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Zero-casualties rout, woot! 33% now for the warscore for the capture of the City of Cervera. Also, I don’t want to know what exactly counts as 0.34 of a man… or how can he be fighting. Maybe it’s just the old tactic of flinging a corpse with a catapult to spread disease or something.

December 6

Another in-fighting with the Umayyad sprouts, in the west. This time an Emir fighting against one of the Sheikhs. The Emir most likely wants the sheikhdom since its part of its De Jure Emirate.

I also notice the battle in the south ended. The lone sheikhdom got absorbed into the larger emirate. Considering things, the situation above is likely to end the same.

December 25

Luitfredo is so generous that for Christmas he’s giving me more technology points from Constantinople. RNG decided them to be more cultural points.

Also, since enough time has happened without conquering the sheikhdoms of Aragon, my warscore has started to drop. At this moment, it only went from 33% to 32%, but it will be dropping further if I don’t start to fulfill the war goal.

December 27

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The Mosque of Solsona is the last to fall, giving me full control of Larida. Warscore rises to 38%, but I know it will start to drop again. For this, I move to Catalayud to start fulfilling the war goal.

And thus, 779AD begins.

January 30

We begin to lay siege on Catalayud.

CKII%205-14.png

Take note that the Umayyad forces are labeled as hostile, even if we’re not at war with them. This is due to being at war with Saadid, which they also are at war with, and our war goals conflict with theirs. Thankfully, they’ve not declared war on me over this. Considering Karl, I doubt they will.

Also, now that ten years have passed since the last time I passed a law, I can enact another.

CKII%205-15.png

Increase the taxes on the burghers. Tax and Levy obligations start balanced. Shifting to focus on either changes the modifiers. So, for example, see the percentages got changed to 35/20/-60. Before that, at Balanced, they were 30/30/-50. Now, here’s my reasoning: On average, Mayors have higher incomes than Barons and Bishops. So, making them pay higher taxes means more money for me than if I taxed higher the Barons, for example. Eventually, I will have Barons supply more levies than tax, since on average they have higher levies. With my Bishops… well, I’ll also have them focus on paying taxes, eventually.

The thing is, though, that Mayors prefer supplying troops and Barons to pay taxes. Bishops, for their part, prefer the balanced option. So, at this moment, my Mayors won’t like that I’ve raised their taxes. Thankfully, their discontent only lasts a few years, so I don’t have to deal with their drop of opinion for long.

February 13

I receive a notification that supplies were smuggled into Catalayud. This has increased their morale, which means the siege will last longer. Oh man…

February 24

A second son has been born, Agila.

CKII%205-16.png

And this will be his focus. By the way, even though Karl has non-betrothed offsprings, I can’t arrange one with them. They don’t show on the list. Don’t know why, but for now it seems my plans to secure marriage ties with the Karlings aren’t possible. Hmm, I’ll have to arrange betrothals for the Asturian Princes with others, then. But that will be for later.

February 27

Time to gift gold to vassals. Mayors Lupo of Santander and Suneario of Villablino. The rise of opinion through stuff like gifting gold is only temporary. At some point, I’ll have to gift them again, which was already the case with Lupo and Suneario here. At least, I’m sure with Lupo I had already gifted him before.

March 2

Adelfonso has increased relations between us and the Pope.

March 16

CKII%205-17.png

Uh oh, my Chancellor got caught. Thankfully, the only consequences were losing fifteen prestige (five due to the Mayor, ten due to the Emir). Also, despite this, my Chancellor is still there in Zamora doing his job as if nothing happened. Um… okay…?

September 21 – November 9

My warscore has already dropped to 27%, but fortunately…

CKII%205-18.png

We started making progress sieging Calatayud. With both the Wilayah of Calatayud (September 21) and the City of Alhama de Aragón (November 9) falling. Warscore is now 58% thanks to these two captures. Also… 0.256… I don’t know why the game even deals with decimals when it comes to the number of soldiers. But it does make for some… interesting or weird images…

And the siege continues into 780AD.

March 4

More gifts. This time to Mayors Assur of Logroño and Airmanagildo of Tudela.

March 7

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It was a long fight, but the Ibadi coalition couldn’t press on anymore, and now the Umayyad got more of Alger.

March 11

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The Mosque of Piedra is the last to fall. Warscore is now 68%. Onwards to siege another sheikhdom! Which begins on March 24 at Saraqusta.

April 23

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Apparently, the King found time to go shopping despite conducting a siege. Anyway, hmm, a finger of John the Baptist, huh. Doubting its authenticity is a 20% chance of gaining the Cynical trait. Buying it, as you can see, helps with our Piety. Sure, lets buy that finger. Hopefully there won’t be any sort of negative consequence for this down the road…

May 1

Adelfonso makes the Pope’s opinion to rise again. I’m not sure if they stack. This boost only lasts like about 2 years or so, after all.

May 23

Anthousa gets pregnant again. Maybe it will be a daughter now…? We’ll have to wait and see.

June 26

Unfortunately, Court Chaplain Adelfonso died from Camp Fever. His replacement will be Bishop Friednand of Leyre. And as before, he’ll be sent to Roma.

June 27

Misery loves company, they say. Now Spymaster Luitfredo succumbed to Great Pox. His daughter Vistravara has inherited the County of Santiago. New Spymaster will be Mayor Gundemar of Burgos, and will now travel to Constantinople to continue studying the technology there.

September 15

Thanks to a combination of advance progress through our Spymaster, and technological points gathered, we can now invest into a Military Advance.

CKII%205-22.png

Because the composition of my levies has the majority as Heavy Infantry, I choose to improve their performance. So, their performance has effectively doubled into a +7.5% bonus (they start with +3.7%, or at least that’s the overall starting bonus). It also affects Pikemen, but I don’t have those. Oh well…

September 24

Another fight between Umayyad Emirs has started over the control of De Jure sheikhdoms, this one northwest just south of us. Good, good, too much infighting. This can be good on the long-term.

October 2

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Another Conclave.

October 17 – October 21

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Oh man, raiders. They’re quite a nuisance. Fortunately, after four days they simply leave, sparing me from having to raise vassal levies to counter them.

December 24

Well, a third son, Theodoricho. As with the other Princes, just the childhood focus for now.

CKII%205-25.png

December 26

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Progress! The Wilayah of Saraqusta is the first to fall. Warscore is now 76%. 781AD will be the year this is finally over!

January 7

One of the Umayyad in-fighting has ended.

January 12

Another faction has formed. Count Adelfonso of Viscaya wants the throne. He has legitimate claims on the throne, being the son of the late King Foila, another of Aurelio’s cousins. Hopefully this won’t end like with Prince Mauregato.

February 8

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Yikes, this is bad. The only real threat is the rise in the Local Revolt Risk. The opinion drop wasn’t that big, and I can, and did, gift gold to Silo and Liuva to amend that. Silo himself is still in position to continue his job, so hopefully next time he’ll fate better.

February 24

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The City of Alagón is captured. Warscore is now 87%.

May 2

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I think it’s time to let bygones be bygones, and give Mauregato his freedom back. Mind you, Mauregato will be punished beyond just four years under house arrest. And that is…

CKII%205-30.png

Select our primogenitor as the new heir. The perk of being an Elective Absolute Monarchy with an Agnatic-Cognatic Elective succession method is that the King’s word is law,so his nomination passes without anyone else having a say on the matter. But I still chose the first born, anyway.

May 29

Although, therefore, Prince Mauregato starts the faction for Seniority Succession, since he is the current oldest relative of King Aurelio. Let’s see if this goes somewhere…

June 13

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Adelfonso does have a good Martial stat, so I take the offer. Had I refused, Suneario would’ve lost 20 prestige.

June 25

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The Mosque of Caspe is the last to fall for us to take full control of Saraqusta. But the warscore only reached 98%! At this point, I decide to go after the Saadid forces right next door at Urgell, since sieging another sheikhdom would take much longer.

July 21

My forces and theirs clash at Urgell. Much as I’d want to not disrupt their independence war, considering my ambitions, I must do this. Besides, they have Karl’s help. Which I still can’t believe it’s happening.

July 23

Anthousa is pregnant, again. Well, it shall be a big family, then.

August 15

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And with their defeat at the City of Pallars, warscore reaches 100% and I force them to surrender their portion of Aragón.

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Too bad about Alto Aragón still being in Umayyad hands. Oh well, until the chance opens.

Now, one last detail before wrapping up, since I only noticed it after the war over. Culture assimilation has an interesting detail. Not only do locations can change which culture is the majority, but cultures themselves can evolve depending on culture and location. For example, the Bedouin here in Iberia eventually become Andalusians. For us Visigoths, it’s one of the many Spanish cultures, like Castilians, or Aragonese (well, not sure if Aragonese is one of them). I bring this up now because I noticed the County of Santiago now has a Portuguese majority. Santiago starts with Suebi majority, but I don’t know if the Suebi themselves turned Portuguese, or the Visigoths gained majority, and they were the ones to turn Portuguese. Ah well…

And so, this was it. What future opportunities can present themselves to us? Well, that’s for another time.

 

Until next time.

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Suebi change to Portugese, Catalans (which are the Aragonese you mention :P ) come from Visigothic. 

Also good to see you're not needing the vassals to get these wars won, though I must admit I don't know how much of a negative impact that'd have on this version of the game. And is there any hint as to why Charlemagne helped the Ibadi like if they had high opinion of one another?

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14 minutes ago, Dayni said:

Suebi change to Portugese, Catalans (which are the Aragonese you mention :P ) come from Visigothic. 

Also good to see you're not needing the vassals to get these wars won, though I must admit I don't know how much of a negative impact that'd have on this version of the game. And is there any hint as to why Charlemagne helped the Ibadi like if they had high opinion of one another?

Oh, I see. Well, there are already some places with Catalan majority at 769AD start. Heh, I guess I was partly wrong about Aragonese.

Well, there may be times I may need the help of the vassals. Eventually I will enact the laws to increase their levies, even if they dislike that over paying taxes. And about Karl... well, I never checked when he joined the battle. There's the fact that depending on the war, you can only join the attacker or the defender under certain circumstances. Like how you can only join a Holy War on the defender's side, which means you have to be of the same faith as the defender. And stuff like that. Actually, the Saadid Emir is not Ibadi, he's Sunni, like the rest of the Umayyad.

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Chapter VI – Little by Little

August 15, 781AD – May 7, 786AD

Spoiler

Before we properly start, I want to show a neat feature CKII has. It’s one of the pre-game toggleable things. Anyway, it’s possible to enable that names of places depend on who controls them. So, for example, remember how last time I took the Saraqusta Sheikhdom among others? Well, now that it’s mine, it’s now…

CKII%206-1.png

The County of Zaragoza! Yeah, it’s a minor thing, but I like it.

So, to begin with, I assign the new titles for the minor holdings. But also, I assign courtiers to the new counties, since I want to stay within my Demesne limit. When courtiers become vassals, it comes with a few things. Or more like, leave with a few things. I can no longer arrange them marriages/betrothals, they leave any Honorary Title if they had one, leave their tax-free time behind, etc. No big deal, although any courtier with a betrothal, it gets undone. So, I give people the titles that opened.

 

One last thing, now that Suneario is back from the war I assign him to Train Troops at Oviedo. Gotta keep on my toes on the lookout for any possible threat. *emphasis south*

So, now we can properly begin!

First things first. A dire situation has come up. Calatayud spent too much time in Umayyad hands that they became a Sunni majority! That won’t do.

CKII%206-2.png

Court Chaplain Friednand, you got a new job. Odds are quite good there. Though to be honest, I don’t know if the Heretic Noble event is good or bad.

September 17

Probably since we made him a Commander, Prince Adelfonso has decided to disband his faction for taking the throne. See, Mauregato? He is content with less.

November 17

More gifts. To Mayors Gundemar of Burgos and Johan of Gijón.

November 29

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An unusual combination of options. Well, I do love a good book, so let’s see if we have any luck with that, since it’s pretty much a coin-flip here. By the way, the bird option is basically falconry, which also has a 50/50 split for being successful or not.

December 5

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Hm, seems her guardian was still a Suebi. Though going from Suebi to Portuguese to back to Suebi… that’s a step back, basically.

December 13

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So much for the book. The top option gives the Depressed trait, and we don’t want that. So, seems it’s time to give falconry a try after all.

And thus, King Aurelios has a new hobby as we move into 782AD…

February 15

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Well, seems we got more success here. The bottom option only gives 15 prestige, but the top one… well, you can see there, which is the one we’ll go for.

Also, I notice Vistravara is back to being Portuguese. Seems going back to Suebi didn’t took well.

February 22

Count Silo once again tries to have Aurelio become friends with another of his. This time with Count Rodericho, one of the new trio I assigned to the Aragón counties (and the one who fled from Ruscino, by the way, he has come a long way now). Well, hopefully this may go better than with the late Court Chaplain Adelfonso.

February 24

Aurelio and Anthousa finally have a daughter. This will be her childhood focus:

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March 13

Like with the late Adelfonso, seems Aurelio and Rodericho couldn’t become friends.

March 17

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Good, good, someone converted. But it seems the county itself won’t get its turn just yet.

Late March sees the end of that Umayyad in-fighting just south of Asturias.

May 13

Silo seems to want to try again in having Aurelio and Rodericho become friends. Well, might as well. Since these “friend of my friend” events always have the peril of removing the Gregarious trait (a least, when a character has it).

May 31

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But things just went from bad to worse. Being rivals with other characters is a flat -100 to Opinion. Fortunately, Rodericho still has the +40 from his recently granted County, and I can gift him gold, which I do right now, granting +66. This counters the -100, but the bad thing is that both positive modifiers have timers, and while I can renew the gold one, the other I can’t. Oh well, you can’t win them all.

July 13

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The bottom option comes with a small loss of prestige and a small drop in Anthousa’s opinion of Aurelio. The top two are varying losses or gold but gains of Anthousa’s opinion. The second to last is the most expensive (if you can consider 15 gold expensive depending on monthly gain), but grants the best outcome when it comes to Anthousa’s opinion. As mentioned way back, you can put a price on love.

Through these months, it seems the war between the Umayyad and Saadid has turned back to the former’s favor. Karl withdrew his 7k stack, and now the Umayyad are sieging the Saadid. The more I think about it, the more it looks like Karl indeed only bothered just so I could take land form the Saadid. Because really, can anything prove me wrong at this point?

September 30

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Ah, a traveling merchant. Yes, yes, let’s invite him in.

October 3

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Of course, being on the western fringes of Europe back in the day, everything beyond Mesopotamia can be considered mythical. And the reverse is true. After all, the original version of Aladdin, where he lives in China or at least near it, the Maghreb is considered the faraway and mythical place.

October 6

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A Eunuch, huh. Sure, why not. He’s a Catholic Ethiopian with a respectable Diplomacy stat. He can also fill up the Court Eunuch Honorary Title, which I give to him since there’s no penalty for doing so.

October 24

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Ah, seems the childhood focus has finally bear fruit. We are the Visigoths, you will be assimilated!

November 19

I receive my notification that my truce with the Umayyad is only 46 days from expiring. Ah, good, good. We can soon wage another offensive war without fearing prestige loss. Had the Sultan died, the truce would’ve ended sooner. But he’s a stubborn one. Despite suffering from heavy wounds and the loss of one leg due to all the wars the Umayyad has done for the past decade, he still clings to life.

And thus, the countdown proceeds to end shortly into 783AD. I still need a prime situation to attack them, though.

February 22

Anthousa is pregnant again. Because you can never have enough backups offspring.

February 26

The Saadid finally could no more, and got reconquered. Well, what a shame.

April 4

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But fortunately, another revolt is happening. This one’s different, though. It’s a rise against the Sultan’s tyranny, and while technically independent I could declare Holy War on him, he’s still part of the Umayyad. He can easily surrender if I declare war. Hmm, a tough decision. Well, I’ll see first what happens.

April 12

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Not the most desirable outcome. The best one is sowing distrust between the Emir and the Sultan. Oh well, as long he can trigger that later.

June 22

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Ah, just waive a finger around, and you calm them down. Refusing gives Aurelio the Cynical trait… which I avoid.

August 14

Count Silo wants to schedule another gathering. Sure, why not.

September 24

A second daughter is born, Sisenanda. I give her the Pride childhood focus, like her eldest brother.

October 8

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This is good, once I get to war.

October 9

Chancellor Mauregato sowed more dissent, but it was again between the Wâli and the Emir. Maybe third time’s the charm…

November 4

A third Catholic revolt has happened in northeast Umayyad. I think the time has come to take more land. However, I decide to keep it small. I’m going after Alto Aragón, the last De Jure Aragón area still in Umayyad hands.

I don’t hold back. I raise personal levies, vassal levies, and hire the Saxon Band again.

November 22

Asturian troops begin to arrive into Alto Aragón. We won’t actually start to siege, since sieges only begin if you have more soldiers than the defenders, which the first unit to arrive don’t have.

December 5 – January 3

Carousing with Silo lasted until 784AD. Though in December 20 Silo got overboard with drinking again. Tsk, he should control himself.

February 26

The last of the troops arrive at Alto Aragón. The Umayyad are still busy with the revolt in the west, so both me and the Catholic uprising currently have it easy. This may change.

April 6 – May 5

More carousing with Silo. This time, there was games April 21, which Aurelio won. Well, Silo ain’t the late Luitfredo. Also, April 25 sees Anthousa getting pregnant again.

July 14

CKII%206-19.png

The Wilayah of Jaca is the first to fall. Warscore is 4%. Also, we got a total of 14 prisoners! Mostly the daughters and wives of the Emir. But I also captured the three daughters of Wâli Abu-Bakr of Loarre, Marshall of the Hakamid Emirate. He currently has the job of Training Troops at Alto Aragón. And this is therefore why “Bring your son/daughter to work” Day is not always a good idea, folks.

No one’s willing to pay ransoms for them, though.

August 30

Once more, the Chancellor sows distrust between the Wâli and the Emir. *Sigh*

September 1

CKII%206-20.png

Next was the city of Huesca, bringing warscore to 11%.

September 6

The next siege is Barbastro, but the defenders managed to raid our camps. Also, I see the Umayyad force has stopped attacking the revolt in the west and is heading this way!

September 13

Marshall Suneario wants me to promote to Commander another person. This time Mayor Gundemar of Burgos. I accept, as Gundemar has decent Martial stat.

CKII%206-21.png

They’re after the Catholics. I must stop the siege and intercept them!

October 18

They change their minds and now proceed to intercept us. Our armies clash at Albarracin.

November 1

CKII%206-22.png

It speaks for itself to either the King or society if enforcing discipline gives Aurelio the Cruel trait. So, I go with the bottom one. Yes, Froila is the heir, so that prestige loss isn’t good for him long-term.

November 16

CKII%206-23.png

We won the fight at the City of Teruel, giving a big boost to warscore, now at 50%. I can resume my siege on Alto Aragón.

November 18

I need to have a word with my Chancellor. It’s the fourth time now sowing distrust between the Emir and the same person instead of the one I want!

November 24

And the newest member of the family, Johan, is born. And the assigned childhood focus is:

CKII%206-24.png

December 8

We return to continue the siege of Alto Aragón. However, I also see the Umayyad are coming back. Hmm…

December 27

Marshall Suneario grants another Levy Reinforcement bonus. Nice.

December 28

Our Chancellor, however… it’s the fifth time now…

And now we begin with 785AD.

January 26

I finally move my army to intercept the Umayyad.

March 3

And we clash again at Castellon, near the Mosque of Nules.

April 2

CKII%206-25.png

Warscore at 67% and we even captured an Emir! Alright!

I proceed to offer a ransom to… well, he’s paying himself, apparently. I obtain 145 out of it! This easily pays back the drain the mercenaries are doing to my coffers. He accepts on April 16.

May 1

CKII%206-26.png

Woah! Really, the Iconoclasts have eclipsed the Orthodoxies? Wow…

May 13

My army returns to Alto Aragón to resume the siege.

July 14

I can enact the following Cultural Advance, which I do.

CKII%206-27.png

This only applies for Barons and the like, but regardless, it’s an unremovable flat increase to all of them. Noble Customs I was only +3, so now I’ve doubled it to +6 with Noble Customs II.

July 23

Anthousa gets pregnant again. King Aurelio still has it going despite being 70 now.

August 17

CKII%206-28.png

The Mosque of Barbastro is next to fall, brining warscore to 73%. I also capture the three sisters of Wâli Ghalib. He is willing to pay ransoms, so off they go, even if at 10 gold each.

Also, I see the Umayyad are coming again. But this time directly to Alto Aragón!

August 26 – September 13

It must be one by one, but all three are released and I gained 30 gold out of it.

October 13

CKII%206-29.png

Ah, it’s such a good thing when things are working out… within our borders, of course.

October 18

The Umayyad finally reach Alto Aragón and a clash breaks out. They’ve recovered in numbers, but…

CKII%206-30.png

As the defender, I have the higher ground.

October 22

CKII%206-31.png

At this point I just choose what benefits me most at this moment. Due to his age and Martial stat, I am considering to have Aurelio, if not sit out from battle entirely, to not have him as a leading Commander anymore. 7 Martial is already low for my tastes.

November 24

CKII%206-32.png

But it did seem to do the trick, granting me victory near the Wilayah of Loarre, and warscore to 92%. So close!

December 19

Our Spymaster (Mayor Gundemar of Burgos) brings an early Christmas from Constantinople with technology points that the RNG decides for them to be Economic.

786AD is the year for this to end, I’d say.

January 19

Count Rodericho joins the Faction for Seniority Succession. His animosity towards Aurelio is probably the reason, I’d guess.

February 1

The Umayyad Sultan calls for help to Sultan Umar of Africa. Pft, too late for that, I’ll win before they even reach Gibraltar! Maybe…

February 10

CKII%206-33.png

One of the child prisoners has turned sixteen. You see, when you have child prisoners, you basically take over their education. I’m not completely sure, but I think you can assign them focuses, but it seems I can’t do that for the ones I have. Well, they’re not my courtiers, so…

Although, as a little fact, King Aurelio is also an Indulgent Wastrel. The one thing he has that lowers Diplomacy. Thankfully, he has a LOT of other traits that increase it.

In any case, her father is now willing to pay ransom for her and her sisters, which I do.

February 24

The newest member of House de Cantabria is born, Silo. This one makes me think he got named after Count Silo. By the way, newborns are assigned a default name, but you can change it. But only at that moment. For my part, I don’t really rename them and just go with the default first choice the RNG picks. Anyway, his focus will be Pride.

Unfortunately, Silo was born with the Sickly trait, which is a -2.5 Health penalty. Oh uh.

March 2

 

The first of Wâli Abu-Bakr’s daughters is returned. Like the other trio of sisters, I’m also only getting 10 gold for each.

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Finally, the first big task for the Court Physician. This is for what I paid to hire you Liuvericho, all those years ago, you understand?

Also, by this point Froila has turned twelve. This means it’s time to give him now a proper Education Focus. His highest stats are Diplomacy and Learning at six (after already factoring traits and stuff), and he gained the traits Affectionate (Diplomacy +1), Rowdy (Martial +1), and Curious (Learning +1). Childhood traits can affect how children fare with certain Education Focuses.

CKII%206-35.png

So, I sent him on the Diplomatic path as his father. He has both of Diplomatic Education’s positive traits while none of the negative ones. As it is, it’s the most optimal one he can take.

Also, I had put it off, but now I can’t ignore it. Brunechildis is Countess of both Mallorca and Menorca, aka the Balearic Islands. She is a Catholic Catalan. Most likely through assimilation, since her siblings are Greek (Iconoclast sister and Orthodox brother). You see, she’s countess, but her heir to the counties is the Strategos to the Theme of Mallorca, since she herself still has no offspring (currently fifteen, so close to coming of age, and apparently, her siblings can’t or won’t inherit).

So, my plan is to have Froila marry her, so I can secure the islands as part of my De Jure claims. I may need to enact a plot to kill the Strategos. You may notice that due to ranks, Froila takes a big prestige hit. But it’s okay, he can weather it and gaining claims to the Balearic Islands makes up for it, I’d say. I waited until Brunechildis was fifteen since I was still waiting to see if I could have Froila betroth a Karling. Oh well…

March 14

And betrothal accepted. Still need to wait for Froila to become of age, but at least I can secure the future marriage now.

March 18

The next daughter of Wâli Abu-Bakr is ransomed for 10 more gold.

March 22

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Dammit! Now Silo’s survival hangs in the balance. But on more positive news…

CKII%206-37.png

The Wilayah of Loarre is last to fall, giving me full control of Alto Aragón and warscore at 97%. Almost there! But I also see Umayyad forces again coming over towards the Catholic revolt. I can’t save them now due to location (annoying mechanics make them hostile to me so I can’t reinforce them), I can only finish my own war now. So, I move over to siege Urgell. Although, now that I fulfilled my war goal, warscore will now increase on its now. Let’s see what’s faster…

 

March 30

The last daughter of Wâli Abu-Bakr is returned.

April 13

We begin to siege Urgell.

The Catholic revolt is crushed by early May. We failed them! And now the Umayyad will go after me! Their forces are too great now (it’s one of the annoying things about the Umayyad, they seem to have unlimited soldiers no matter how many we kill, and they have the wealth gain to pay and sustain the higher tiered mercenaries) for me to fight. I must do this… I must launch an Assault to speed things up.

May 7

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The warscore probably could’ve made it to 100% on its own without problem… but oh well, I took the Wilayah of Urgell and force the Umayyad to surrender.

CKII%206-39.png

Ah, look at that. The entirety of Aragón is mine now. Although I’ll have to give the count and minor holdings away, due to demesne. But that’s for another time.

So, to wrap things up…

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Karl took Bavaria while we weren’t looking. And now Karl has the dubious honor of having a Muslim Defensive Pact, a Pagan Defensive Pact, and a Christian Defensive Pact… all against him. What a guy.

Not much gains this chapter, but it’s okay. Next time it may be more fruitful…

 

So, until next time.

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