Dynasties and Empires - Gameplay Thread (End of 1521) (user search)
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  Dynasties and Empires - Gameplay Thread (End of 1521) (search mode)
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Author Topic: Dynasties and Empires - Gameplay Thread (End of 1521)  (Read 10674 times)
Lumine
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« on: October 31, 2018, 12:03:16 PM »
« edited: December 11, 2018, 10:41:38 PM by Lumine »


The Cast:

In Western Europe:
Kingdom of France: King Francis I Valois (Windjammer)
Kingdom of England and Ireland: King Henry VIII Tudor (Dkrol)
Kingdom of Portugal: King Manuel I Aviz (HenryWallace)
Kingdom of Castile and Aragon: King Charles I Hapsburg (Spamage)
Kingdom of Scotland: Lord Protector John Stewart, Duke of Albany (Garlan Gunter)
Republic of Venice: Doge Leonardo Loredan (GoTfan)
Papal States: Pope Leo X Medici (Kalwejt)

The Rulers in the East:
Kingdom of Denmark and Norway: King Christian II Oldenburg (JacksonHitchcock)
Kingdom of Hungary and Bohemia: King Louis II Jagiellon (YPestis25)
Kingdom of Poland and Lithuania: King Sigismund I Jagiellon (Kingpoleon)
Teutonic Knights: Grand Master Albrecht von Hohenzollern (NewTennesseanPolitician)
Grand Duchy of Moscow: Grand Duke Vasily III Rurik (King Saul)

The Sultan and the Shah:
Ottoman Empire: Sultan Selim I Osman (Dereich)
Safavid Empire: Shah Ismail I Safavid (Tim Turner)
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Lumine
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« Reply #1 on: October 31, 2018, 12:51:11 PM »
« Edited: November 02, 2018, 10:53:37 PM by Lumine »

Warfare:


War Units:

Drawing from the BoP/SoD tradition Dynasties and Empires will be abandoning the use of precise troop numbers due to the historical context, which didn't feature professional and standing armies (other than elite units), was limited in its army sizes due to logistics, and happened to have wars being excessively costly for monarchs to maintain for long. Whilst retaining my old dice system granted bonuses and penalties depending on the context, players will wage war with the use of Field Armies of their own national troops, and Mercenary Regiments recruitable from three different manpower pools.

Three things to have in mind:

1.- It is assumed your national territories have garrisons. Overseas territories - such as colonies - are likely not to be garrisoned during this era due to the sheer cost, unless noted otherwise by the player or should the area be a war zone - such as most of 1519's Spanish America or the Asian Portuguese colonies -. That means national territories will be defended in case of war, but in order to be able to attack you need to assign extra troops.

2.- Logistics matter. A general rule of thumb for Christian rulers is that while one Field Army in a given region can reasonably be supplied and remain well equipped, combining two or three in a single place might bring serious supply issues unless careful planning is used or the territory invaded could supply those forces. In the case of the Safavids and Ottomans, it is generally believed up to four or five armies could be supplied in a single theater, but at a very large cost.

3.- In this age, armies are VERY expensive. If you're not careful a long war could easily drain your treasury and lead to desertions, economic and internal strife and other such problems. Be careful when deciding not only when, but how to go to war.

Now, regarding units:

Field Armies: It is assumed each field army is comprised of roughly 10,000 to 15,000 men, including infantry, cavalry and artillery when that last one is available. Since these armies are made up of recruits rather than professional forces, they recieve no special bonuses on training. As a final note, countries that cannot mobilize more than a single army are still able to send troops to colonize, particularly in the Portuguese case.

Mercenary Regiments: A mercenary regiment is considered to be comprised of 4,000 men, more expensive than the regular troops but equipped with training and fighting bonuses so long as you can continue to pay their salaries. You can choose to recruit from the ultra-expensive Swiss mercenaries to the mid-priced Germans, to the cheaper but less efective "Europeans" (meaning non-Swiss or German mercenaries, such as Italian, Irish, Scottish, from the Balkans, etc).

Navy Units: For simplicity's sake we will treat navies as a single "ship" unit, with the understanding that the specific navies of each country are indeed different (an Ottoman ship would not be the same as a Venetian one).

Current Armies and Navies:

Kingdom of France:
Can mobilize up to four field armies.
20 ships.

Kingdom of England and Ireland:
Can mobilize up to two field armies.
30 ships.

Kingdom of Portugal:
Can mobilize up to one field army.
60 ships.

Kingdom of Castile and Aragon:
Can mobilize up to six field armies.
25 ships.

Kingdom of Scotland:
Can mobilize up to one field army.
6 ships.

Republic of Venice:
Can mobilize up to one field army.
120 ships.

Papal States:
Can mobilize up to one field army.
No navy.

Kingdom of Denmark and Norway:
Can mobilize up to one field army.
30 ships.

Kingdom of Hungary and Bohemia:
Can mobilize up to two field armies.
No navy.

Kingdom of Poland and Lithuania:
Can mobilize up to three field armies.
5 ships.

Teutonic Knights:
Can mobilize up to one field army.
5 ships.

Grand Duchy of Moscow:
Can mobilize up to two field armies.
No navy.

Ottoman Empire:
Can mobilize up to eight field armies.
100 ships.

Safavid Empire:
Can mobilize up to four field armies.
No navy.
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Lumine
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« Reply #2 on: October 31, 2018, 10:28:31 PM »
« Edited: October 31, 2018, 11:21:56 PM by Lumine »

Turn One: 1519


The Cast:
In Western Europe:
Kingdom of France: King Francis I Valois (Windjammer)
Kingdom of England and Ireland: King Henry VIII Tudor (Dkrol)
Kingdom of Portugal: King Manuel I Aviz (HenryWallace)
Kingdom of Castile and Aragon: King Charles I Hapsburg (Spamage)
Kingdom of Scotland: Lord Protector John Stewart, Duke of Albany (Garlan Gunter)
Republic of Venice: Doge Leonardo Loredan (GoTfan)

The Rulers in the East:
Kingdom of Denmark and Norway: King Christian II Oldenburg (JacksonHitchcock)
Kingdom of Hungary and Bohemia: King Louis II Jagiellon (YPestis25)
Kingdom of Poland and Lithuania: King Sigismund I Jagiellon (Kingpoleon)
Teutonic Knights: Grand Master Albrecht von Hohenzollern (NewTennesseanPolitician)
Grand Duchy of Moscow: Grand Duke Vasily III Rurik (King Saul)
Kingdom of Sweden: Lord Regent Sten Sture the Younger (Kalwejt)

The Sultan and the Shah:
Ottoman Empire: Sultan Selim I Osman (Dereich)
Safavid Empire: Shah Ismail I Safavid (Tim Turner)


Player Crisis:

Francis I Valois:
-Popularity: High
-Legitimacy: Very High
-Economy: Medium

Your Majesty,

-With the death of your rival Emperor Maximilian the Holy Roman Empire is now up for grabs, and for the first time in decades the election promises to be heavily competitive. Indeed, you're seen as one of the two strongest candidates, but the election itself poses quite a dilemma. On one hand, victory for Charles I and the Hapsburg would mean consolidation for a realm which already poses a threat and would be a bitter blow to your prestige, and on the other, reaching the Imperial Crown would in all probability require almost outrageous amounts of bribes and it might weaken your economic standing too much. What will you do?

-Even as the Treaty of London was signed last year it becomes clear that the goal of "eternal peace" across Europe is unlikely to last very long. Over the past few years France has benefited from a productive set of alliances with Venice, Scotland and the Pope, although the rise of Charles I and the potential for Henry VIII joining an European alliance are a cause for concern. What course should French diplomacy follow?

-A message from Metz has arrived for you, bearing the signature of the Richard de la Pole (the "White Rose"), the surviving Yorkist claimant to the crown of England and once an ally of King Louis XII. De la Pole writes in humble request of your support for his claim to the throne, arguing not only that the Tudor dynasty has no right to the English throne but that France would undoubtedly benefit from his friendship should he be victorious. Will you respond to the White Rose?

Henry VIII Tudor:
-Popularity: High
-Legitimacy: High
-Economy: Medium

Your Majesty,

-With the last pregnancy of Queen Catherine having resulted in the premature death of a daughter, you are still left with the ongoing problem of having no male heir to the throne and only Princess Mary as a legitimate offspring. On the other hand, Bessie Blount has just given birth to your bastard Henry, decisively proving that you can indeed father a healthy son. How will you address the complex matter of the succession, and what is to be done about little Henry FitzRoy?

-As Charles and Francis are set to fight each other for the Imperial Crown there are some who wonder on whether it might be possible for a different candidate to win. Indeed, there are many who have openly expressed their wish that you should enter the race for Emperor and that, while an outsider, it would be possible to win as the more experienced alternative compared to the still very young Francis and Charles. While entering the Imperial election would probably mean an enormous amount of expenditure it could also bring you an unexpected seat of power in Europe. Will you do it?

-Even as Cardinal Wolsey has pushed for the Treaty of London and constantly encouraged the role of England as an arbiter for peace in Europe, the Cardinal is also fully aware of the importance for England not to be isolated from what appears to be an upcoming conflict between France and Spain. Indeed, he is already encouraging you to explore the possibilities of an alliance and see which power could offer you the most. Will you seek alliances with one of the main powers? Or will you seek friends elsewhere?

Manuel I Aviz:
-Popularity: Medium
-Legitimacy: Very High
-Economy: High

-Distressing news come from Spain as it is confirmed that the traitor Magellan will indeed lead a Spanish expedition to try and find the "Spice Islands" and potentially lead to the entry of a colonial rival on Asia, currently a region in which Portugal strongly benefits from not having competition. There are many who advocate deploying a fleet or a naval squadron to hunt down Magellan and put an end to his expedition, even at the cost of a major diplomatic incident with the Hapsburgs. What will you do?

-One of the dreams of your life has always been the prospect of a Crusade to drive the Turks out of Europe, particularly given the stunning victories of Sultan Selim against the Safavids and the Mamluks and the rise of his military power. Alas, past attempts at a crusade have resulted in nothing as funding assigned by the Church ends up wasted or spent elsewhere. Will you try to revive these dreams on your own and perhaps bring other monarchs on board?

-While Portuguese garrisons and settlements in Africa and Asia begin to grow despite the natural limits imposed by logistics and population, the land claimed in Brazil remains unpopulated and ungarrisoned, creating the potential danger of another power aiming for the region. On the other hand, it isn't entirely clear whether the cost of settlement or garrison would be advisable against the much greater wealth to be won in the East. What should the Portuguese policy on Brazil be?

Charles I Hapsburg:
-Popularity: Low
-Legitimacy: High
-Economy: Medium

-Your grandfather Maxmilian is dead, and the Holy Roman Empire is now up fo grabs in the upcoming election. While it is felt among your circle and family that the throne belongs to you and only you, the German princes and ambitious monarchs such as Francis and Henry (even the Pope) might think differently. On the other hand, even with the still mixed state of your economy Spain can be a reliable, major sourced of income if exploited, and it could give you the edge on the election. How will you fight for the imperial crown?

-While there is still plenty of time to think about marriage, there are those in the Court who wonder if - as Ferdinand is the sole male heir at this point - it wouldn't be advisable to start searching for a proper bride to start a family early and before events take an unexpected turn. A marriage would certainly bring the benefits of a dowry and a potential alliance with another European kingdom (at a time in which Francis retains strong allies of his own), although it might tie you down for future obligations depending on the match itself. Will you search for a bride?

-As Spanish domination begins to take hold in most the Caribbean and Panama it becomes clear that the Americas are far, far larger that what was previously believed. Up to now the exploration and conquest has been based on a mostly "private" model, in which conquistadors fund their own expeditions with royal permission. While this has dramatically reduced the expenses of colonization, it has also meant a lack of control regarding where expansion takes place, and some have warned of the dangers of conquistadors eventually waging an aggressive war on their own. Will you seek to alter the current system?

Duke of Albany:
-Popularity: Low
-Legitimacy: Medium
-Economy: Low

-Over the past couple of years you've thoroughly enjoyed your time residing in France as a guest of King Francis, the Regency being protected and held by your allies and lieutenants back in Scotland. There is, however, a relevant question to be asked on whether it is wise to continue residing so far away from home, or to simply stay in France despite the current alliance between both nations. Among your entourage there are those who urge caution and a return to Scotland, and a bolder group actually advocates further travel to Rome to meet the Pope and gain potential support for your Regency, an act which would decisively bolster your legitimacy. Where will you go?

-The past six years following the disaster at Flodden have featured a most distressing and complicated situation in the Scottish-English border, with Tudor soldiers constantly pursuing raids north of their border and contributing to a sense of chaos and disarray with their constant sackings of anything of value that can be found. The situation is grave enough to pose a danger to the stability of the Kingdom, although putting a stop to the raids by force could invoke the wrath of the mercurial Henry. What will you do?

-One of the main provisions of the renewal of the alliance with France two years ago was the promise of a French bride for your young ward King James once he comes to age, a match that could cement the good relationship between France and Scotland for good. There are some who wonder if it might not be a good idea to cement this promise by actually arranging a formal betrothal of the young King with someone like Francis's daughter, although at the risk of further enraging your exiled enemy the Queen Dowager. Will you pursue this avenue?

Leonardo Loredan:
-Popularity: High
-Legitimacy: High
-Economy: Very High

-The rise of Selim I and the Ottoman Empire has caused much fear and tension within Venice, particularly as the increase naval and military power of the Ottomans places your eastern holdings in Crete, Cyprus and the Aegean at serious risk. The loss of such islands would certainly be a disaster for Venice, and something to be avoided at all cost. Just how will you deal with Selim's rising ambitions and might?

-Over the past few years Venice has been allied to France, a relationship which yielded some benefits in the last war despite substantial losses. As the political situation in Europe begins to shift once again and with a new Emperor to be elected, there are those who wonder whether Venice should stay the course in support of Francis or seek different alliances in light of the current French domination of Milan.

-The ongoing weakness shown by the Kingdom of Hungary and Bohemia has been the source of much speculation and gossip within the Republic, particularly given the youth and apparent lack of power of Louis II. While on one hand Hungary is a relevant bulwark when it comes to Ottoman expansion in the Balkans, it could also be argued that their weakness presents an opportunity on by itself for further expansion. So what should the Venetian policy on Hungary be?

Christian II Oldenburg:
-Popularity: Low
-Legitimacy: Medium
-Economy: High

-Ever since you executed the powerful Torben Oxe the nobility of the Kingdom has become very hostile to you and your centralized rule, wasting few opportunities to criticize the present policies, the promotion of the commoners instead of the nobles, and particularly, the fact that you continue to have a woman like Sigbrit Willoms as one of your chief advisers. With the sustained demands from the nobility to dismiss Willoms - unofficially slandered as a witch -, will you yield to them to seek reconciliation?

-Two attempts to recapture Sweden in the past decade have failed and yielded significant damage to the reputation of the Kingdom, and the longer the anti-unionists and the Regent maintain the Swedish autonomy the larger the danger of unilateral and permanent independence becomes. Some of your military advisers urge a new invasion even at the cost of hiring mercenaries, although a third defeat could open up dramatic problems of its own. How will you deal with Sweden?

-The newly opened Imperial Election has brought up a curious opportunity for your kingdom, if properly exploited. Through your sister Elizabeth you are the brother-in-law of the Elector of Brandenburg, and due to the harmonious marriage between Elizabeth and Joachim Nestor it is not impossible to think that the Elector could be swayed to voting for your chosen candidate if you're persuasive enough. Will you try to meddle on the election and influence Brandenburg?

Louis II Jagiellon:
-Popularity: Low
-Legitimacy: High
-Economy: Very Low

-While only thirteen years old you have finally reached an age in which you can being to assert yourself and take control of your vast domains, and at a time in which Hungary and Bohemia require strong leadership. The regents who have disastrously led the Kingdoms for the past few years remain in place and the powerful but ailing Cardinal Bakócz is still the leading voice at court, promoting friendship with Venice and the Hapsburgs. How will you assert your rule?

-Despite the enormous internal troubles faced by your realms the main threat may very well be an external one. Selim I has risen to an almost overwhelming amount of power, and with whispers in the air about a new Ottoman campaign Hungary could very well be next in line for the expansion of the Turks. With a disastrous financial state and a need for allies and support, how will you keep Hungary safe from the Ottoman Empire?

-As the Imperial Election approaches you're called to fulfill a crucial role as one of the Electors, and your vote could very well prove decisive in the election. While most believe your vote will necessarily be an automatic vote for Charles given the marriage ties, some wonder if this might be a decent opportunity for Hungary to receive something in return. One issue that has been discussed at court is how despite the marriage by proxy Mary von Hapsburg resides in Austria and is still being educated there, and that the betrothal of your sister Anne to Ferdinand von Hapsburg hasn't yet become a formal marriage. How should this opportunity be exploited?
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Lumine
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« Reply #3 on: October 31, 2018, 11:21:11 PM »
« Edited: November 02, 2018, 11:34:29 PM by Lumine »

Leo X Medici:
-Popularity: Medium
-Legitimacy: Very High
-Economy: Low

-With the death of the Emperor the new election poses quite a challenge, and will require some degree of skill to navigate without harming the Papacy. While Papal support on by itself could not sway the election it could be a decisive edge to some of the contenders, or even turn unlikely candidates into credible challengers for the crown. As having a friendly Emperor would be a decisive factor in bolstering the strategic situation of the Papacy, how will you intervene in the Election?

-While the calls for a Crusade over the past two years were serious from your end, the effort appears to have dissipated once again as a substantial amount of the funds (particularly those entrusted to Hungary and Cardinal Bakócz) ended up wasted. With the Ottoman Empire seemingly stronger than ever and Sultan Selim believed to be preparing for further warfare, should the calls for a Crusade be renewed once again?

-The ongoing debates in Germany over the need for reform with the Church continue to grow in intensity while the popularity of the reformers increases, even when a handful of able men like Johann Eck try to fight and contest the arguments of the reformers. Following Cardinal Cajetan's failure to get the friar to recant (and not having dared to arrest him due to the legal protection of the Elector of Saxony), the situation is currently at a complex standstill. Men like Eck and Cajetan stress the importance of fighting the ideas of Luther and his followers at every turn, the Papal nuncio von Miltitz (disagreeing with Cajetan) believes compromise is still possible, and others believe Luther should be made to suffer the punishment for heretics, regardless of the political cost. How will you react?

Sigismund I Jagiellon:
-Popularity: Medium
-Legitimacy: High
-Economy: Low

-Following several years of ruling over Poland and Lithuania it remains a source for concern that your are still to sire a male heir, opening up a dangerous situation with the young Louis II of Hungary and Bohemia being the closest male relative. On the other hand, Queen Bona is very young and just gave birth to her first daughter, meaning that a male heir could come soon. Will you take action on the matter of the succession or wait for a male heir which the nobility would elect as King once the time comes?

-The war with the Grand Duchy of Moscow has dragged for years, and following a smashing defeat of the Moscow forces four years ago their latest attempt to siege Polotsk also resulted in failure. With Vasily III still standing somewhat strong, will you seek peace with Moscow or try to seize the initiative in this long, bitter and bloody war?

-Even as the Moscow Prince takes much of your attention, there is also a complex matter to solve when it comes to the troublesome Teutonic Orders. For years the Grand Master has refused to submit as a vassal of the Kingdom of Poland, and has taken his resistance to the outrageous extent of calmly allowing Teutonic raids on Polish territory. How will you deal with Albert's persistent insolence?

Albrecht von Hohenzollern:
-Popularity: Medium
-Legitimacy: Very High
-Economy: Medium

-For years you've managed to resist the outrageous demands from Sigismund and Poland to submit to their rule, but after years of war there is a growing sense of exhaustion within the lands of the Order. The current raids may also be a source for a renewed war, one which the order would need to fight with great efficiency in order to successfully fend off. Just how will you handle the ambitious Polish King?

-One of the main sources of trouble for the Teutonic Order is the current lack of appropiate allies, even accounting for your family ties in Germany and the mostly symbolic Papal support (further reduced following conflicts with Rome). Should you try and ally yourself to Moscow, even when they remain unrepentant and refuse to return to the Catholic fold? Denmark, despite their current problems handling Sweden? Sweden itself, even at the cost of angering the Danish King?

-Even if your authority is strong and unchallenged in Prussia itself, the decentralization in the Baltic has led the "Livonian Order" to become significantly autonomous in many aspects, particularly given the brilliance of Master Wolter von Plettenberg. There is certainly a debate to be had on whether it would be advisable or desirable to increase the level of control over that area, particularly as war appears to be likely. How will you handle the matter of the Livonians?

Vasily III Rurik:
-Popularity: Medium
-Legitimacy: High
-Economy: Medium

-Much like a few other European monarchs, you face a major problem within your family over the lack of an heir. Fifteen years of marriage have simply failed to produce a single pregnancy, leading to strong rumours of your wife being barren and unable to produce children. Even more worrying is the fact that should you die the throne will fall to one of your unmarried brothers - so far forbidden to marry -, a fate which you have long considered a potential disaster for Moscow. With your wife remaining strongly supported by the Clergy, just how will you solve this matter?

-The last campaign against Lithuania resulted in another disappointing failure upon defeat the siege of Polotsk, opening further questions about the constant warfare between both realms. Now that the latest battles have resulted in defeat but the Poles could face another enemy in the face of the Teutonic Knights, how should the war proceed? Should peace be sought out? A new offensive launched? Or... something else?

-Even if the Poles and Lithuanians are your biggest enemy, the Crimean Khan Mehmed I Giray is a foe not to be underestimated, and his latest moves suggest an intention to start a new campaign against a yet undetermined target. Will you try to deal with Mehmed or with his Ottoman overlords in anyway, or will you take no action in hopes that their goal is to sack a different nation?

Selim I Osman:
-Popularity: High
-Legitimacy: Very High
-Economy: High

-Congratulations, Mighty Sultan, on your latest and resounding victory over the Mamluks. After a period of rest in Istanbul there are many who believe the time is ripe for the next military campaign, and there is much discussion as to who should be the next target for invasion. Some point out to the Safavids and the continued survival of Ismail despite the heavy defeat of a few years ago, some to Hungary and the known weakness of the present government, others to Venice and the constant trouble posed by their navy and Aegean positions, and others to the Knights of St. John and the thorn that Rhodes continues to represent. Should the Ottoman armies move to war once again?

-For the past few years the Safavid Empire has been punished through a most severe embargo, which has meant constant vigilance and even the execution of any merchants coming from Persia or trying to cross into Persia. While this has significantly damaged the Safavid economy and cut many of their ties to Europe it has also heavily hurt the Silk industry and other economic areas, hurting increasing numbers of citizens and threatening to become an economic drain sooner rather than later. Will you alter present border policy with the Safavids?

-One of the most concerning developments in the South now that you hold the Mamluk territories in Egypt and Arabia is the rise of the Portuguese Empire across the Indian Ocean, expansion which if left unchecked could mean the Empire being cut off from India and other territories, a complex prospect to face. Do you have any plans to contain Portuguese influence in Asia?

Ismail I Safavid:
-Popularity: Medium
-Legitimacy: High
-Economy: Medium

-Following defeat at the hands of Selim I you have managed to regain much of what was lost and re-stabilized your Empire, but a high personal cost. Indeed, it is believed the strain of past defeats has led you into an unhealthy life increasingly away from governing affars as Vizier Mirza Shah Hossein (who continues to proclaim his strong friendship and unyielding loyalty to you) grows much stronger. While some would argue the Vizier has proved his loyalty, others believe him becoming too powerful could become a serious problem. How will you handle the Vizier?

-The continued trade embargo by the Ottoman Empire remains a source for much trouble within your dominions, having damaged industries and commerce and pushed the Safavid economy into a complex spot, some advisers believing it might not take long before the effects become truly disastrous. On the other hand, the embargo on goods like silk is also damaging for regions of Europe such as Italy and continues to drive some prices up, which could open an opportunity for alliances with European powers. Just how will you deal with this embargo?

-Over the past few years the Portuguese have expanded more and more into Asia and the Indian Ocean, and even fought you on a limited basis from time to time. The situation has created quite a rift within the court, as some consider the Portuguese a mortal thread that ought to be expelled from the seas while others either consider Selim the greater danger or point out that the lack of a navy would make it difficult to fight the Portuguese. How will you handle the relationship with Portugal from now on?
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Lumine
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« Reply #4 on: October 31, 2018, 11:29:45 PM »

Special Event: 1519 Imperial Election


Preview: With the death of Emperor Maximilian I, a new election to choose the next Holy Roman Emperor has been scheduled. While the strongest contenders appear to be Francis I of France and Charles I of Castile-Aragon, there is talk and speculation concerning Henry VIII of England and perhaps even a darkhorse German candidate. What appears to be certain is that whoever wins the Imperial crown will be forced to spend large sums in bribes given the reputation of a majority of the electors. Right now, the fate of the Empire is on the hands of Louis II of Hungary (Bohemia), Louis V of the Palatine (Palatinate), Frederick III of Saxony (Saxony), Joachim I Nestor (Brandenburg), Albert of Brandenburg (Mainz), Richard von Greiffenklau zu Vollrads (Trier) and Hermann of Wied (Cologne).

Rules: The deadline for this Special Event is Tuesday afternoon. Until then players will be able to fight this election through intrigue, bribery, negotiations and other moves (creativity will be rewarded), and Louis II of Hungary (YPestis) will have to PM his vote for Emperor to me. Feel free to fight it in public or in private, and once the deadline is crossed I shall announce the election of the new Holy Roman Emperor. Have fun!
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Lumine
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« Reply #5 on: November 06, 2018, 11:02:39 PM »

Henry VIII elected Holy Roman Emperor!
Days long deadlock finally broken with a narrow victory for the Tudor candidate


When the Electors of the Empire - or their representatives - gathered in Frankfurt after a struggle of several months and a grueling election campaign, they were not exactly clear on just what would happen. What was originally seen as a titanic, competitive contest between Charles von Hapsburg and Francois of Valois descended into chaos once the field expanded into four candidates, none of them the original favorites. While both Francis and Charles found separate candidates to support (with France forming part of the pro-Tudor alliance and Charles promoting his brother Ferdinand) any resemblance of clarity regarding the outcome was lost as the Electors were up of grabs, an unique opportunity which also led to the unlikely bids of Christian II of Denmark and Sigismund I of Poland, neither of which had been expected to stand.

Particularly complex was the fact that the Electors virtually refused to state their public support before the election, some of out decorum and a majority due to their vote being undecided almost all the way to the end. And while rumours remain unconfirmed, it is believed the Election may have been even more expensive than was experts predicted, most Electors under heavy pressure by virtue of marriage pledges, increasing and almost obscene financial bids, and various attempts at propaganda which met a mixed response - and may have backfired in a couple of cases -. Still, by the time the Electors or their representatives met to vote, it was generally believed King Henry (displaying the largest financial support) and Prince Ferdinand (bolstered by propaganda and offers) entered as the strongest challengers, the Danish King following closely behind on account of strong financial efforts. The Jagiellon candidate was generally believed to have been somewhat less successful than Christian II, most of his bids surpassed by other candidates and his propaganda efforts proving insufficient.

While, of course, most details were to remain in secret - including several and somewhat vicious efforts behind the scenes -, a curious fact that reached the public was that it took several days and what was believed to be several rounds of balloting to elect a new Emperor. Despite a strong base of pro-Hapsburg support rumour has it a slim anti-Hapsburg majority did emerge, if not focused on a single candidate. Following prolonged deadlock and what has been rumored to be no less than two unsuccessful different attempts to elect one of the Electors, it appears the anti-Hapsburg Electors finally chose to coalesce behind a single candidate before greater uncertainty took place. By the evening of the fifth day, it was announced that Henry Tudor had achieved the required majority.

By sheer coincidence, King Henry VIII of England had now become Emperor Henry VIII.
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« Reply #6 on: November 08, 2018, 10:52:24 PM »
« Edited: November 16, 2018, 11:43:11 PM by Lumine »

End of 1519


Having long planned for an expedition into Mexico following several minor advances into the region in the past day, the relationship between governor Velázquez and Hernan Cortés was all but broken when Velázquez's attempts to pull the plug on the venture were ignored by Cortés, who in direct defiance of the Governor - and technically the law - took the prepared expedition and landed on the coast, founding the new settlement of Veracruz. A resourceful men aided by key individuals who could (crucially) translate for him, Cortés set about his task and met with early success when travelling across the lands of vassals or enemies of the mighty Aztec Empire.

Aided by what seemed to be the belief of many that Cortés and his men were gods as they happened to almost perfectly coincide with a key prophecy, the explorer managed to reach an early alliance with the native Totonacs following the initial failure of the Aztecs to engage his forces, but failed to bring the powerful Tlaxcaltec forces into his side in what became a costly advance through enemy territory and a series of setbacks against the powerful Xicotencatl, ruler of Tlaxcala. Cortés's struggles were nonetheless eased by a surprising message from the Crown arrived asserting full support and funding for Cortés's expedition - to the shock of Governor Velázquez and those who viewed the expedition as illegal -, the Conquistador felt certain that he could push ahead a find himself in Tenochtitlan as it became clear just how rich the region was.

And yet a decisive obstacle presented itself on the form of Emperor Moctezuma, whose persistent doubts on the foreigners soon turned into certainty as he learned of the struggles with Tlaxcala. Determined not to allow Cortés into his capital Moctezuma warned him to turn away, and when he did not he commanded his forces to strike. Already weakened through constant warfare with the Tlaxcaltecs, the Aztec intervention led to a resounding and bitter defeat for Cortés at the Battle of Huexotzinco, Cortés himself being captured after the battle as the remnants of his expedition fought their back into a successful retreat. The survivors reached Veracruz as the news of war spread, setting the Mexica-based Aztec Empire and various Aztec tribes against the Castilians and the allied tribes Cortés managed to bring on board, and with Governor Velázquez somewhat vindicated on his criticism of his rival conqueror.

Only rumours from Tenochtitlan had reached Veracruz at the end of the year, but if they are to be believed the hapless Cortés and others were sacrificed at the Great Temple of Tenochtitlan... and quite a few natives in the vicinity of Veracruz have shown grave signs of disease.

Christian II invades Sweden!
Regent Sture killed in battle, Danish armies triumph at Vastena, Christian II rises in prominence


Despite the unexpected nature of his candidacy to the Holy Roman Empire and the enormous sums of money spent without being elected, Christian II of Denmark could nonetheless celebrate the fact that he had managed to be taken seriously as a contender for the throne and struck positive relationships with several of the Electors, a decisive factor for any monarch wishing to gain more prestige.  This apparent success was then confirmed by the King's intent to defeat the Swedish rebels and re-establish Oldenburg rule over the region once and for all in what would constitute the reunification of the Kalmar Union.

Hiring mercenaries to wage war alongside his own forces, the Danes entered the Kingdom from Sweden from Skane and inflicted several minor defeats to the Swedish forces, pushing them back at every turn. Regent Sture's attempt at rallying his forces to resist the invasion soon turned into a disaster as the outnumbered Swedish army was engaged, encircled and destroyed at the Battle of Vastena, very few survivors escaping from a field in which the Regent himself found death in battle. The aftermath of the Danish victory and the renewed support from Archbishop Trolle seemed to cement the Danish position, but Stockholm and a majority of the Kingdom is yet to surrender, and Sture's widow Christina is believed to be working to rally the Swedes into further resistance.

The World at the End of 1519

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Lumine
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« Reply #7 on: November 11, 2018, 08:05:59 PM »
« Edited: November 11, 2018, 08:11:05 PM by Lumine »

Turn Two: 1520


The Cast:
In Western Europe:
Kingdom of France: King Francis I Valois (Windjammer)
Kingdom of England and Ireland: Emperor Henry VIII Tudor (Dkrol)
Kingdom of Portugal: King Manuel I Aviz (HenryWallace)
Kingdom of Castile and Aragon: King Charles I Hapsburg (Spamage)
Kingdom of Scotland: Lord Protector John Stewart, Duke of Albany (Garlan Gunter)
Republic of Venice: Doge Leonardo Loredan (GoTfan)
Papal States: Pope Leo X Medici (Kalwejt)

The Rulers in the East:
Kingdom of Denmark and Norway: King Christian II Oldenburg (JacksonHitchcock)
Kingdom of Hungary and Bohemia: King Louis II Jagiellon (YPestis25)
Kingdom of Poland and Lithuania: King Sigismund I Jagiellon (Kingpoleon)
Teutonic Knights: Grand Master Albrecht von Hohenzollern (NewTennesseanPolitician)
Grand Duchy of Moscow: Grand Duke Vasily III Rurik (King Saul)

The Sultan and the Shah:
Ottoman Empire: Sultan Selim I Osman (Dereich)
Safavid Empire: Shah Ismail I Safavid (Tim Turner)


Player Crisis:

Francis I Valois:
-Popularity: High
-Prestige: Medium
-Economy: Medium

Your Majesty,

-While your latest domestic policies have started to be implemented to some limited success (it may take years for full implementation), there’s been remarkable resistance on two different front: on one side, growing hostility from several prominent nobles regarding financial centralization and suspicions regarding your increased powers; and on the other the decision to repeal the Jewish ban, leading to several conflictive situations in Paris, Lyon and other cities as many treat the newcomers with great hostility. How will you address this?

-The sudden moves of several European powers to undermine the Hapsburg colonial empire has come as a surprise, but also as an opportunity. Indeed, there are some at court who continuously suggest that France could very well start playing the colonial game and gain new territories to hold, and there’s also the complex matter of the Venetian colony of St. Mark- your ally – to consider. How will you conduct yourself in the colonial game?

-For the time being the Imperial Crown has been wrestled by the Tudors and taken away by the Hapsburgs, eliminating a potential danger. While the refusal to enter the Imperial race proved a significant loss of prestige, the handover of Calais has assuaged public criticism of your actions. And now that the Hapsburgs are left without the Empire, how will you deal with the vast domains of Charles I?

Henry VIII Tudor:
-Popularity: Low
-Prestige: High
-Economy: Low

Your Majesty,

-Victory at the Imperial Election has been enormously costly in all senses, but it has also empowered you abroad with an enormous amount of prestige and turned you into the official face of the anti-Hapsburg block within the Empire. And yet not only is the Empire rocked by the demands of Church Reform and the Saxon support for Luther, you must also decide how will you attempt to govern an Empire despite having no lands of your own in it.

-Despite the foreign triumph the domestic situation is a grave crisis, as Cardinal Wolsey warns after his return from Germany. Political factions have formed to defend the rights of either Princess Mary or the Duke of Richmond, there’s widespread hostility and even outrage among the public at the loss of Berwick and Calais, and even worse, rumor has it the powerful Duke of Buckingham may be undertaking intense efforts within the Court and consulting with other nobles, even if he still professes his public loyalty. How will you deal with this situation?

-An unexpected series of developments within the Kingdom of Scotland have dramatically altered the situation of your weaker neighbor, Lord Protector Albany having strengthened his authority enough to send troops to instill order in the Scottish border – to the anger of the English lords at the Scottish Marches – and being on the verge of joining your family through a planned marriage to your sister Margaret. Should Albany be treated as an ally and his success welcomed, or should he be considered more of a threat to England despite the Treaty of Berwick?

Manuel I Aviz:
-Popularity: Medium
-Prestige: High
-Economy: High

-While the intervention in Aden was conceived as a different affair than what it become, the Battle of the Gulf of Aden places your forces in Yemen at war with the Ottoman armies of Suleiman and opens a decisive question on whether Portugal can afford waging war against the Ottoman Empire, or what the cost would be from giving the Ottomans free reign to hold Yemen and particularly the port of Aden. With your commanders requesting urgent instructions, what will you do?

-Efforts to begin the fortification of key positions in Brazil have been successful up to this point, establishing enough minor forts to hold both the northern and southern areas of the region in which your men have settled. Still, the biggest question to be answered – particularly in light of the new Aztec War – is how the natives ought to be treated and handled. How should colonial policy in Brazil develop in this area?

-Despite your best attempts to stop Magellan the extra support from the Hapsburg Crown was enough to allow the traitorous captain to escape south, racing with an English expedition to reach the islands in what would constitute quite a blow to Portuguese aspirations if either captain is successful. Will you take further steps on this matter? And how will you deal with the fact that the English have also sent an expedition?

Charles I Hapsburg:
-Popularity: Medium
-Prestige: Low
-Economy: Medium

-The Empire has been dramatically lost to the Tudors, and while it remains to be seen for how long there is some significant solace in knowing that due to the vast holdings you possess within the Empire you can still counter the authority of an Emperor with no lands in Germany proper, and who  is already facing significant problems of his own at home. How will you deal with the new Holy Roman Emperor?

-Unfortunate news from the Americas, Your Majesty. Not only have the upstart English and Portuguese attempted to sink the Magellan fleet and reach the Spice Islands as well, the defeat of the Cortés expedition leaves you with a complex war against the Aztec Empire and with a powerful Governor of Cuba still puzzled by your sudden embrace of Cortés’s technically illegal expedition. And even further, the Venetians have dared to breach the Treaty of Tordesillas and settle north of Florida. How will you react to these stunning colonial developments?

-Your new domestic agenda and personal efforts have begun to show early signs of success as the hold on Aragon strengthens, parts of the Castilian nobility start showing less hostility to the Crown, and attempts to ease up the complex matter of Queen Joanna prove helpful. Still, not only is the city of Seville and its merchant-aristocratic class furious at the loss of their privileges within a decade, the gathered Cortes have put forward several demands of their own before accepting your requests for further tax concessions and revenue, including decentralization in Castile, support for the organized local communities and reserving high positions to Castilians and not foreigners. How will you handle the Cortes?  

Duke of Albany:
-Popularity: Medium
-Prestige: Medium
-Economy: Low

-After substantial efforts you have made a triumphal return back into a relatively more stable Scotland, and with a curious opportunity ahead of you. Following the Pope’s controversial decision to grant several marriage annulments – which a few young priests have already criticized within the Kingdom – Queen Dowager Margaret Tudor stands very much attainable, a marriage which would mark your entry in the English Royal Family as well. Will you take the decisive step and marry the ambitious Margaret?

-Temporary reconciliation has been achieved with the Earl of Angus and his supporters, but at the cost of inflicting a grave offense on Clan Hamilton and earning the declared enmity of the Earl of Arran following his dismissal from the Privy Council. With the internal situation still complex despite Angus’s current war against the raiders on the border, how will you handle the Hamiltons? Can you stop them from taking hostile actions against one of your supporters or your regency?

-Following a brief exploration trip to the New World new lands have been found up in the north, and seemingly far away from Spanish influence. Will you follow the lead of the English and the Venetians and seek to have Scotland enter the colonial game despite the inevitable breach of the Treaty of Tordesillas?

Leonardo Loredan:
-Popularity: High
-Prestige: High
-Economy: Very High

-Amidst much ceremony and fanfare the first professional units of a Venetian Army are being trained and armed, leading to some degree of patriotic fervor within the city. Still, it soon becomes clear that growth into a sufficiently large force will become very difficult due to the lack of manpower, a direct effect of the limited population of Venice compared to other powers. How will you deal with this?

-After your promises of a reward a group of businessmen have founded St. Mark in the Americas, and have returned to both collect their prize and request assistance. If St. Mark is to grow and thrive beyond the few current settlers it will need a steady flow of resources, which will either have to go through the Hapsburg controlled Strait of Gibraltar or be shipped by an ally. Will you risk action by the Castilians by suppling St. Mark and promoting a Venetian colonial empire?

-The strong declaration on privacy has seemingly had something of an effect in deterring some minor pirates, but the more brazen ones remain a problem and continue to plague the Mediterranean from their bases in Northern Africa. With places like Algiers, Tunis and Morocco proving a persistent source of piracy, will you take bolder action on this issue?

Christian II Oldenburg:
-Popularity: Medium
-Prestige: High
-Economy: Medium

-Avoiding the ongoing standoff with the Danish nobility has not helped ease up their discontent, only the war with Sweden stopping some of your critics to step up with their rhetoric. With continuously louder calls to dismiss Willoms as one of your advisers and criticisms of the pro-commoner politics becoming the norm, will you take actions or further deflect the issue?

-Victory at Vastena leaves the vast Kingdom of Sweden open for invasion and your hated rival Sture dead at last. Still, even with Archbishop Trolle on your side there’s still a strong push for resistance among surviving opponents to Danish rule and Sture’s widow, and there’s a general belief that a lot will depend on your policies towards the defeated. How will you handle the Swedish matter after this significant victory?

-Although victory at the Imperial Election could not be found, it should be noted that your relatively successful campaign has increased your international prestige, and particularly your standing among several German Electors. With a new Emperor, will you seek to play a role in the internal politics of the Empire or take advantage of this newfound prestige in some way?

Louis II Jagiellon:
-Popularity: Low
-Prestige: Very Low
-Economy: Very Low

-As your fourteenth year begins there are still lingering questions on when will you seek to implement personal rule and dismiss the current Regents, or whether Hungary will continue to be governed by Cardinal Bakócz and the other leading figures chosen by your late father. Is the time ripe for action?

-So far your domains in Hungary and Bohemia have avoided foreign aggression, the Venetians seemingly focusing their energies elsewhere and Sultan Selim busy fighting a war in Yemen and dealing with the Knights of St. John. Still, the state of the Hungarian military remains poor and highly decentralized due to the private armies of the nobility. Can you find a way to keep both your Kingdoms safe during these troublesome times?

-During the past year the marriage issue has only become more prominent as many wonder whether your marriage with the Queen will stop being a match solely by proxy, or whether your sister will indeed get to the marry Ferdinand von Hapsburg despite his defeat at the Imperial Election. As other rulers appear interested in marriage alliances with your family, what will it be?
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« Reply #8 on: November 11, 2018, 08:10:25 PM »

Leo X Medici:
-Popularity: Medium
-Prestige: Low
-Economy: Low

-The death of your nephew Lorenzo and his wife last year has meant the partial end of a dream given his rising status as Lord of Florence and Urbino, and opened up questions both on the future of his infant daughter Catherine and specially the fate of both dominions. With Urbino permanently endangered by the pretensions of the excommunicated Francesco Maria della Rovere, and Florence still possessing strong Republican elements hidden in the shadows, what should be done to address the problems left by Lorenzo’s untimely demise?

-Despite initial success at a compromise regarding indulgences the entire Reform question has entered into a critical face as the Church faces both attacks over the latest marriage annulments and the Brandenburg-led critique of the indulgency suspension; and the ongoing trouble posed by Luther, whose provocation by Eck has led to an infamous renunciation of Papal infallibility which has the more conservative and fanatical cardinals howling for Luther’s arrest and punishment as a heretic to set an example. With an increasingly complex process at hand, what will you do?

-After Petrucci’s conspiracy and execution and the naming of over thirty cardinals the Medici faction of the College of Cardinals has appeared to be rather predominant for the past couple of years, but concerning reports from some Papal agents and diplomats suggest that at least one foreign power may be spending sums to create a faction of Cardinals of their own. On the other hand, such rumors don’t appear to have supporting facts yet, as some Cardinals have even started being more vocal in your support. How will you react to those rumors?

Sigismund I Jagiellon:
-Popularity: Medium
-Prestige: High
-Economy: Low

-Your decisions on the succession matter while giving you more heirs on the basis of legitimization have led to an internal conflict within your family – particularly from the furious Queen - and to substantial criticism from those who fear that you have opened up the door for future succession conflicts. In the meantime, Queen Bona has just given birth to your son and possible heir, significantly bolstering her prestige and popularity amidst her resentment at your factions. How will you handle family matters from now on?

-The aftermath of the Treaties of Kiev and Konigsberg has left you with an increased diplomatic standing and looking strong, the treaties themselves being popular among the Polish and Lithuanian citizenships due to the perceived humiliation of the Teutons and the Muscovites, but there are still significant foreign matters to address. With Moscow divided in civil war – as you must also decide what to do with your prisoner Glinksi -, Sweden hoping to survive a Danish invasion and the Crimean Khan getting stronger, will you take direct intervention on these matters?

-With the recent treaties affording you cover from the Imperial defeat and the succession troubles, some courtiers have begun speculating as to whether your relationship with the Sejm merits some changes. Dramatically empowered thanks to the Nihil Novi laws, the Polish Sejm prevents you from enacting laws without their consent – a far different outlook than the more autocratic Lithuania -, and while you have sought compromise so far some of your advisers are pushing you for a stronger stand on empowering the Crown. Will you do it?

Albrecht von Hohenzollern:
-Popularity: Low
-Prestige: Low
-Economy: Low

-Far from a success, the outcome of the Treaty of Konigsberg appears to have significantly undermined not only the financial situation of the Order, but your standing in it. Indeed, several prominent knights have criticized what they see as submission to Poland and dismissal of their loyalty to the Papacy, and while none has uttered the words in public there’s suspicion that in private you may be a victim of accusations of cowardice. What will you do?

-Your proclamation concerning the Livonian Order may have had a different effect than intended, as Master von Plettenberg has angrily expelled your officers and rejected centralization by dismissing it as “improper tyranny” coming from the head of the Order. With the expelled brothers furious and many considering it an insult to your authority, how will you react?

-The ongoing crisis within the Church and the new leadership of the Empire both pose significant challenges and opportunities, particularly as the Teutonic Order technically depends on Pope Leo and the new Emperor Henry when it comes to the continued legality of their rule over Prussia. Will you seek to alter the current relationship with the Pope, or strike different sorts of ties with the new Emperor?

Vasily III Rurik:
-Popularity: Very Low
-Prestige: Low
-Economy: Low

-Following the uprising of the Boyars you have been forced to flee Moscow and take residence up north with the forces that remain loyal to you, a still significant force which if well led could still win the war. How will you fight this civil war and regain your seat in Moscow?

-With the perceived humiliation of Kiev weighing heavily on your prestige it would appear unlikely for Moscow to receive immediate assistance from a neighbor, but there are options to be considered even with the Teutonic Knights or the Polish King. Will you seek foreign support to crush the rebels to your rule?

-The mysterious death of your wife and the strong refusal of your planned match have left you single, and still devoid of heirs. Will you seek a new bride elsewhere?

Selim I Osman:
-Popularity: High
-Prestige: Very High
-Economy: High

-Despite being planned as a brief campaign to seize Yemen, the expedition against the Mamluks has become open warfare not only with the Mamluk survivors, but with the Portuguese expedition deployed against Aden. While the Crown Prince is confident that he can achieve victory against the enemy there’s still the matter of prolonged warfare to be considered, and what would mean to wage war against Portugal for the Indian Ocean. How will you conduct this conflict?

-In the aftermath of the fall of Rhodes and the crucial improvement of the strategic situation in the Aegean a series of issues are still to be resolved. On one side there’s the matter of the few hundred surviving Knights of St. John, forced to surrender after the siege and whose fate is still to be decided. On the other, the fact that the Venetians have begun militarization efforts and are significantly improving the fortifications in Crete and Cyprus, something which could be interpreted as an act of defiance. What will you do?

-A disturbing report reaches your main camp coming from Anatolia, reporting that what seems like a small revolt in rural areas is in progress. From what can be ascertained bands of bandits and deserting soldiers have gathered under the leadership of the charismatic preacher Celal, who appears to be battling your local officials and taking advantage of the growing availability of firearms within the empire to wage this revolt. What instructions will you give to deal with this matter?

Ismail I Safavid:
-Popularity: Low
-Prestige: Medium
-Economy: Low

-The general lack of activity at court is proving to be a persistent problem as the prestige of the House of Safavid continues to drop, and the Vizier continues to centralize power in apparent reaction of what many describe as a lack of leadership. How will you turn things around?

-After the recent battles in Yemen the Ottoman Empire and the Portuguese find themselves at war with each other, a conflict which promises to have consecuences for supremacy across the seas. While it is uncertain whether each of the contenders – past foes of yours – will approach you, will you seek to intervene in the Yemen conflict and pick a side?

-The Ottoman decision to continue the embargo has brought further economic problems for the Empire as the silk industry starts to face enormous troubles to remain afloat, its merchandise virtually barred from European markets. Will you take action to drop the embargo or address the economic situation before it’s too late?
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« Reply #9 on: November 11, 2018, 11:53:22 PM »

The Royal Families of Europe, 1520


The Aviz:

Monarch: Manuel I of Portugal (b. 1469), married to Eleanor of Austria (b. 1498)
Issue:
1.   Joao (b. 1502), Crown Prince
2.   Isabel (b. 1503)
3.   Beatriz (b. 1504)
4.   Luis (b. 1506)
5.   Fernando (b. 1507)
6.   Alfonso (b. 1509)
7.   Henrique (b. 1512)
8.   Duarte (b. 1515)
9.     Son (b. 1520)
Important Relatives:
10.   Eleanor (b. 1458) and Isabel (b. 1459), the King’s surviving widowed sisters

The Osmans:
Monarch: Sultan Selim I (b. 1470), married to Hafsa Sultan (b. 1475)
Issue:
1.   Suleiman (b. 1494), Crown Prince, married to Mahidevran (b. 1500)
2.     Hatice (b. 1496), Beyhan (b. 1497), Hafize (b. 1499), Fatma (b. 1500), Hafsa (b. 1500) and Sah (b. 1507), the Sultan's daughters
Important Relatives:
3.   Mahmud (b. 1512) and Mustafa (b. 1515), Suleiman’s sons
4.   Üveys Pasha (b. 1498), the Sultan’s stepson

The Tudors:
Monarch: Henry VII of England (b. 1491), married to Catherine of Aragon (b. 1485)
Issue:
1.   Mary (b. 1516), betrothed to Joachim Hector of Brandenburg (b. 1505)
2.     Henry, Duke of Richmond (b. 1518), betrothed to Maria of Saxony (b. 1515)
Important Relatives:
3.   Margaret, Queen Dowager of Scotland (b. 1489), the King’s elder sister
4.   James V, King of Scotland (b. 1512), Margaret’s son and Margaret Douglas (b. 1515), Margaret’s daughter
5.   Mary, former Queen of France (b. 1496), the King’s younger sister, married to Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk (b. 1484)
6.   Henry Brandon (b. 1516), Frances Brandon (b. 1517), Eleanor Brandon (1519), Suffolk and Mary’s children
7.   Edward Stafford, Duke of Buckingham (b. 1478), distant relative of the King
8.   Richard de la Pole, the White Rose, Earl of Suffolk (b. 1480), Yorkist claimant

The Valois:
Monarch: Francis I of France (b. 1494), married to Claude, Duchess of Britanny (b. 1499)
Issue:
1.   Charlotte (b. 1516)
2.   Francis (b. 1518), Dauphin of France
3.     Henry (b. 1519)
4.     Daughter (b. 1520)
Important Relatives:
5.   Louise of Savoy (b. 1476), the King’s mother
6.   Marguerite de Valois  (b. 1492), the King’s sister
7.   Charles, Duke of Alencon (b. 1489), Marguerite’s husband and prince du sang
8.   Charles, Duke of Bourbon (b. 1490), prince du sang
9.   Charles, Duke of Vendome (b. 1489), prince du sang

The Hapsburgs:
Monarch: Charles I of Castile and Aragon (b. 1500)
Issue: None.
Important Relatives:
1.   Joanna I, Queen of Castile (b. 1479), the King’s mother
2.   Ferdinand (b. 1501), the King’s brother and heir, betrothed to Anne of Hungary
3.   Eleanor, Queen of Portugal (b. 1498), the King’s sister, married to Manuel I of Portugal
4.   Isabella, Queen of Denmark (b. 1501), the King’s sister, married to Christian II of Denmark
5.   Mary, Queen of Hungary (b. 1505), the King’s sister, married to Louis II of Hungary
6.   Catherine (b. 1507)
7.   Margaret of Austria (b. 1480), the King’s aunt, widowed
8.   Catherine of Aragon (b. 1485), the King’s aunt, married to Henry VIII of England

The Stewarts:
Monarch: James V of Scotland (b. 1512)
Issue: None
Important Relatives:
1.   Margaret, Queen Dowager of Scotland (b. 1489), the King’s mother
2.   Margaret Douglas (b. 1515), The King's half sister
3.   John Stewart, Duke of Albany (b. 1481), Regent of Scotland and heir presumptive

The Jagiellons of Hungary:
Monarch: Louis II of Hungary and Bohemia (b. 1506), married to Mary of Hapsburg (b. 1505)
Issue: None.
Important Relatives:
1.   Anne of Hungary (b. 1503), the King's sister, betrothed to Ferdinand of Hapsburg (b. 1501)
2.   Sigismund I (b. 1467), King of Poland, the King's uncle

The Jagiellons of Poland-Lithuania:
Monarch: Sigismund I of Poland and Lithuania (b. 1467), married to Bona Sforza (b. 1494)
Issue:
1.     Jan (b. 1499)
2.     Regina (b. 1501)
3.     Katarzyna (b. 1503)
4.   Hedwig (b. 1513)
5.   Anna (b. 1515)
6.     Isabella (b. 1519)
7.     Nikolas (b. 1520), Crown Prince
Important Relatives:
8.     Louis II of Hungary and Bohemia (b. 1506), the King's nephew
9.   Barbara (b. 1478), the King's surviving sister, Duchess Consort of Saxony

The Oldenburgs:
Monarch: Christian II of Denmark and Norway (b. 1481), married to Isabella of Austria (b. 1501)
Issue:
1.   John (b. 1518), Crown Prince
2.   Daughter (b. 1520)
Important Relatives:
3.   Francis (b. 1497), the King’s brother
4.   Elizabeth  (b. 1485), the King’s sister, married to Joachim Nestor, Elector of Brandenburg
5.   Frederick (b. 1471), the King's uncle, married to Sophie of Pomerania (b. 1498)
6.     Christian (b. 1503) and Dorothea (b. 1504), Frederick's son and daughter

The Safavids:
Monarch: Ismail I of the Safavid Empire (b. 1487), married to several wives
Issue:
1.   Tahmasp (b. 1514), Crown Prince
2.   Alqas (b. 1515)
3.     Sam (b. 1518)
4.     Bahram (b. 1518)
5.     Gunish (b. 1507), Pari (b. 1508), Zainab (b. 1519), Farangis (b. 1519), Mahin (b. 1519), the Shah's daughters

The Ruriks:
Monarch: Vasily III of Moscow (b. 1479)
Issue: None.
Important Relatives:
1.   Yury (b. 1480), Dimitry (b. 1481) and Andrey (b. 1490), the Grand Duke's unmarried brothers
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« Reply #10 on: November 12, 2018, 12:07:23 AM »


Current Armies and Navies:

Kingdom of France:
Can mobilize up to four field armies.
20 ships.

Kingdom of England and Ireland:
Can mobilize up to two field armies.
30 ships.

Kingdom of Portugal:
Currently has limited forces in Yemen and Brazil.
Can mobilize up to half a field army.
57 ships (17 in Yemen)

Kingdom of Castile and Aragon:
Can mobilize up to six field armies.
25 ships.

Kingdom of Scotland:
Currently has limited forces in the Scottish border.
Can mobilize up to half a field army.
6 ships.

Republic of Venice:
Currently building a standing army in Venice.
Can mobilize up to one field army.
120 ships.

Papal States:
Can mobilize up to one field army.
No navy.

Kingdom of Denmark and Norway:
Currently has an entire field army (plus mercenary forces) in Sweden.
Cannot mobilize more men.
30 ships (10 in Sweden).

Kingdom of Hungary and Bohemia:
Can mobilize up to two field armies.
No navy.

Kingdom of Poland and Lithuania:
Can mobilize up to three field armies.
5 ships.

Teutonic Knights:
Can mobilize up to one field army.
5 ships.

Grand Duchy of Moscow:
Currently has a partial field army north of Moscow.
Cannot mobilize more men.
No navy.

Ottoman Empire:
Currently fields two field armies in Yemen.
Can mobilize up to eight field armies.
93 ships (13 in Yemen).

Safavid Empire:
Can mobilize up to four field armies.
No navy.
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« Reply #11 on: November 12, 2018, 12:29:59 AM »

Frisian Revolt at a critical moment!
Duke of Guelders considering withdrawing support, Hapsburg Netherlands standing strong, will Emperor Henry intervene?


Although Hapsburg control over their portion of the Burgundian inheritance in the Netherlands had been successfully ruled and organized over the past few years - particularly through the stellar work of Governor Margaret of Austria, recently re-confirmed on her role -, the continued resistance and hostility of the Duke of Guelders had proven a persistent problem that not even Margaret had managed to put down. A partial consequence of those struggles for power had been the ignition of a powerful revolt in Frisia of peasants, mercenaries and even a handful of petty noblemen (the so-called Arumer Zwarte Hoop) led by the charismatic, almost larger-than-life Pier Gerlofs Donia, a former soldier and peasant who had been wronged in the past.

Financed and supported by the Duke of Guelders, Donia and his forces - numbering as many as 4,000 men - have fought Hapsburg rule for almost five years in a constant struggle, sacking tows, capturing castles and sinking as many as 30 ships from Holland and the neighboring provinces through daring acts of piracy. Despite this relatively successful revolt there are dark clouds in the horizon for Grutte Pier ("Great Pier") and his men, as not only they've proved unable to overthrow Hapsburg rule thanks to the efficient administration of Margaret, they're also facing serious financial issues and the potential loss of support from the Duke of Guelders due to the sheer cost of supporting the revolt.

With the Hapsburgs looking towards potential victory as the revolt faces its critical point the new developments within the Empire have observers in the region wondering whether the tide may not turn again should other nations break what has been their neutrality so far. Will the Emperor Henry intervene on this serious disturbance within the nominal boundaries of his Empire? Can Charles I and Margaret smash the rebels once and for all and bring Friesland into the fold? And will other monarchs risk the wrath of Castile-Aragon or earn their gratitude through intervention?
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« Reply #12 on: November 16, 2018, 10:07:46 PM »
« Edited: November 17, 2018, 12:28:10 AM by Lumine »

Anglo-Scottish War explodes!
Carnage at Berwick as Margaret Tudor is captured, Buckingham and the White Rose rise against the Emperor, British Islands in disarray


Following relatively small hints of tension between the Kingdoms of Scotland and England following the rise in authority of Lord Regent Albany the conflict between him and Emperor Henry seemed to dramatically escalate to unexpected heights. The announcement of the marriage between Queen Dowager Margaret and Lord Albany and the Crusader intentions of the latter came as extremely unpleasant developments for Henry, and this in a context in which English and Scottish troops converged on the border on the apparent pretext of bringing order to the unstable region. Hopes that the tension would be defused became further dashed on account of an explosive declaration by Henry in which he declared himself Regent of Scotland, a statement which sparked severe outrage across the northern kingdom and particularly within the Scottish nobility.

The next few weeks would prove incredibly eventful:

The Battle of Berwick:

Intending to bring Albany to his knees in a swift, decisive stroke, Henry commanded his brother-in-law the Duke of Suffolk to storm Berwick-Upon-Tweed with the main English army right in the middle of the controversial wedding between the Lord Protector and the Queen Dowager, in what was an apparent attempt at capturing the couple. The assault on the yet unfinished wedding soon turned into carnage as several guests were slain and the Scottish army itself - brought by Albany as a precaution - joined the fray to rescue the Regent and his would-be bride, and Berwick-Upon-Tweed itself turned into a battlefield as feriocious and confusing as the Battle of Flodden had been seven years ago. By all accounts both Suffolk and Angus (the main commanders) fought with bravery and distinction, the Scottish host initially halting the English advance with use of the existing fortifications.

After several hours of constant and confusing struggle a group of knights extracted the gravely injured Lord Protector from his holdout, the Queen Dowager and her daughter having been captured by the English vanguard and taken to Sulffok. Soon afterwards the Scottish army was finally forced to yield the battlefield and retreat in relatively good order back to Edinburgh, if in a confirmed defeat which was combined by the defeat of Admiral Barton and the Scottish fleet by a small English naval squadron after Barton attempted to intercept the ships directed to blockade Edinburgh. Still, Suffolk had lost more men than Angus during the battle, and Barton's sacrfice - the Admiral barely surviving the naval encounter - had prevented a blockade. At Edinburgh itself the Scottish nobility closed ranks alongside the Lord Regent, and swore revenge against the "Demon Emperor" Henry.


The Buckingham Revolt and the Irish Uprising:

Suspicious of the Duke of Buckingham's latest moves within the English court and perhaps conscious of the popularity hit caused by the loss of Berwick and Calais, King Henry resolved to put order on his court by ordering the arrest of the Duke in the Tower and a full investigation led by Cardinal Wolsey, a move which nearly succeeded before Buckingham escaped arrest - allegedly with the help of other courtiers - and withdrew to his vast domains in Wales, where he decided his only chance at survival was to raise his banners. Soon Buckingham raised a sizable host among his vassals and supporters, and further expanded his influence by gaining the support of a group of influential anti-Henry lords (the powerful Earls of Northumberland, Derby and Wiltshire), thus becoming a credible threat to London despite it being unknown what cause is Buckingham to espouse.

Yet another conflict for the Tudors was created when the exiled Richard de la Pole, the so called White Rose made his dramatic landing in the north of Ireland alongside a full regiment of mercenaries and with the visible support of the Earl of Arran, after which the Yorkist claimant declared his intention to regain the crown for his House and depose "the Tudor usurper". The end result has been the eruption of another civil conflict across Ireland, the Earls of Kildare and Desmond and other old Irish lords rising to support Richard and pro-Tudor lords such as the Earl of Ormond standing for Henry, a civil war which De la Pole begins at an advantage because of his battle-hardened mercenary contingent.  

With Scotland threatened by Suffolk's army at the border, Ireland and Wales experience the rise of two dangerous and potential claimants to the English throne and with King Henry still unpopular despite attempts to portray the Spice Islands expedition as a great success it is unknown what outcome to expect. However, there's already significant speculation as to what noble families linked by family and marriage to Buckingham or De la Pole will do, particularly as those families have struck a sincere and lasting friendship with Queen Catherine of Aragon - who as of yet remains voluntarily isolated from Henry following the legitimation of the Duke of Richmond -, just as there is speculation on whether Albany's marriage to Margaret Tudor will be considered legitimate due to the interruption of the ceremony.
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« Reply #13 on: November 17, 2018, 12:06:32 AM »

Mixed start to the new Crusade:
Pope survives assassination attempt, Portuguese forces in Yemen crushed, Luther proposes a Council


The Reform Debate:

In the dramatic aftermath of the Leipzig Debate there were many who believed the Papacy would put an end to Luther and his push for Church Reform following the explosive renunciation of Papal infallibility, and it was certainly a fiery demand by the more conservative elements within the Church that the friar be tried as a heretic. It was therefore a surprise - a shock even - when Pope Leo X threatened von Eck with excommunication lest he confine himself to a monastery, a stunning order von Eck complied with out of loyalty. This move has brought on further and increasingly passionate reactions as popular sentiment in Germany has seemingly rejoiced at von Eck's punishment, believing it to be a vindication of Luther's push for reform and helping greatly to reduce anti-papal sentiment.

Indeed, Luther himself appeared almost bewildered, writing a public missive in support of the Pope's apparent support for conciliation and reform and arguing for Pope Leo to call on a general Council of the Church to discuss necessary reforms. The other side of the issue has been the outrage of several conservative cardinals and princes - and the pro-indulgency German Electors - at what they see as an unacceptable surrender to the demands of heretics, an anger that was even felt in some corners of Rome as the Pope made good on his past promises for a Crusade and declared one against the Ottoman Empire. It was soon after that when the Pope was attacked by a deranged monk while making a public appearance, being slain by the guards before he could reach His Holiness.

The discovery that the monk was carrying anti-Luther pamphlets and documents suggesting a hardline conspiracy to eliminate the Pope has pushed tensions to the limit as crowds take to the streets either in support or in opposition to Pope Leo.


The Beginnings of the Crusade

Following the papal announcement of the Crusade it became clear both the Kingdom of Scotland and the Kingdom of Portugal would be among their most visible supporters, but the Battle of Berwick-Upon-Tweed and recent chaos within the British Islands has come as an early blow as both the Scottish Regent and the Emperor are now locked in a deadly struggle. This has left King Manuel of Portugal as the most visible "Crusader King" so far, and both the King and the Ottoman Sultan wasted no time in taking action. On the Portuguese side envoys finally established formal links with the christian Ethiopian Empire (one of many states deeply concerned about Ottoman expansion) and began work towards what could be an extremely productive relationship, but at the same time found themselves pre-empted by Sultan Selim on the battlefields of Yemen.

Indeed, the Sultan - via his Crown Prince - made friends of his own with a generous offer to the Mamluk governor (who was also believed to be rather displeased with the news of a christian Crusade), leading to most of the Mamluk forces switching sides to the Ottoman forces and ending the struggle among non-christian forces. What followed was an Ottoman supported offensive against the Portuguese forces trying to siege Aden, a combination of armies which vastly outnumbered the European forces. At the Battle of Aden the Portuguese forces were soundly beaten back to the sea and only spared by the timely intervention of the fleet, which rescued most of the invading forces as Yemen seemingly became the newest conquest of Selim.

With an early defeat in Yemen and with the Kingdom of Scotland in no apparent shape to enter a Crusade, attention is likely to shift towards King Francis and King Charles as the most important monarchs whose support would make such an ambitious effort against the Ottoman Empire possible.
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« Reply #14 on: November 17, 2018, 12:22:44 AM »

The Wars on the East:
Christian II at the brink of victory in Sweden, Pro-Vasily coalition faces a grueling siege of Moscow


The Siege of Stockholm

With the Battle of Vastrena putting an end to Regent Sture and his more veteran forces, the Kingdom of Sweden fell into disarray and panic. King Christian II was quick to seize the moment, ordering further advances by his armies and taking a series of steps to attempt to secure Oldenburg rule over the region. While the decision to appoint Archbishop Trolle the new Swedish Regent was unpopular with the public and the pro-independence hardliners it provided a somewhat credible support to promises of semi-autonomy, which combined with various offers of leniency allowed Finland and a majority of the resisting lands to desist in the hopes of being spared.

Alas, Stockholm itself and several key cities refused to yield to Christian and became hotbeds for a popular reaction against surrender led by Lady Christina Gyllenstierna - Sture's widow, allowing hundreds of citizens to rise as volunteers to fight the Danish armies. Although most of the cities still defying the King can only defend themselves through limited garrisons the bulk of resistance forces have focused on the city of Stockholm under Christina as the Danish armies and navy have besieged the city and closed it off from the rest of the world, the last messages to get through being pleas of help from Lady Christina towards any monarch or prince willing to save Sweden. Should the city fall, it is believed King Christian will be able to claim victory over the rebellious Swedes.


The Siege of Moscow

Meanwhile, the civil war across the Grand Duchy of Moscow had taken on a whole new dimension. Grand Duke Vasily chose to regain his throne by appealing to his new allies and calling for an intervention by the Teutonic Knights and the Polish King, both sending armies to march on Moscow and crush the Boyar revolt once and for all. Although the projected combination of armies would allow Vasily to lead over 40,000 men against his enemies the popular reaction to the news surpassed expectations, as the notion of the Grand Duke invading his own lands with a Polish army - particularly given the unpopularity of Sigismund across the Grand Duchy - sparked an even stronger will to resist than what was seen in Sweden.

Over a third of Vasily's personal forces melted down as men deserted and further cities and nobles revolted against his authority, all while hundreds (if not thousands) of Moscow citizens rose as militias to defend their city against the combined intervention forces. Finally it was time for the three armies to gather and commence their siege, a series of brutal, bloody battles which saw the Teutonic Knights bear the hardest part and all assaults upon the city rejected by the passionate defenders. After several weeks of siege the coalition armies have proven unable to break the stalemate as of yet, and there's rumors of similar uprisings in some areas away from Moscow.
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« Reply #15 on: November 22, 2018, 12:41:29 AM »
« Edited: November 22, 2018, 10:29:03 AM by Lumine »

End of 1520


Anglo-Scottish War:
Henry VIII increases his support from the nobility, Albany stops Suffolk's advance at Edinburgh, Allied fleet smashes the English at sea


English invasion of Scotland:

Following the costly victory at Berwick-Upon-Tweed the English army led by the Duke of Suffolk was ordered to march all the way to Edinburgh to end the Regency of Lord Albany once and for all, and aided on this task by naval reinforcements Suffolk set upon his task. Albany, exerting himself despite his wound took on a very active role to drive back the English invasion, casting the invaders in a highly negative light through the effective use of propaganda, rallying the nobility not to allow another disaster like Flodden and preparing raiding parties to harass and slow his opponent. More controversially, he also took substantial funds from the Scottish Church to pay for thousands of mercenaries, an act which drew moderate outrage in Scotland and quite a debate among the Cardinals in Rome.

Despite being slowed down due to the constant attacks on his supply line Suffolk made it to the outer defenses of Edinburgh in good order, and his supporting naval squadron destroyed the remnants of the Scottish fleet before it could join its new allies and then established a naval blockade of the city. With the population in a state of panic the Lord Protector and the Scottish lords nonetheless held the advantage in numbers due to the use of mercenaries, and resolved to stand strong on their fortifications. For three days Lord Suffolk launched attack after attack and met defeat after not being able to break the enemy defenses, eventually withdrawing back to occupied territory once it became clear his losses were once again higher than those of his foes and having successfully sent Margaret Tudor back to England despite a rescure attempt.

Cheering for their victory, the Scottish lords were soon reinforced by the arrival of French reinforcements led by the Duke of Alencon.

Tudors and Plantagenets:

Reacting to the latest round of rebellions against the Crown Emperor Henry resolved to bolster his support amongst his own subjects, and succeeded up to a reasonable point. The removal of the Duke of Richmond from the succession, while ruining his prestige with the Saxon Elector - who angrily broke the betrothal pact with England - cemented the resolve of Queen Catherine of Aragon, who at once rallied to Henry and crucially bolstered his support among the high nobility by preventing their defection to Buckingham or the White Rose. And once the hated French chose to intervene in what eventually became the Battle of Dover and the landings in Scotland the Emperor could at least have the consolation that much of the crowd was at least outwardly hostile to a foreign invasion.

Assembling another army to put down the biggest domestic danger, Henry set the Earl of Essex on the task of crushing Buckingham, and after rallying support and volunteers from the Tudor loyalist areas of Wales Essex met Buckingham at Gloucester with the numbers on his side. Following a brief but intense battle Buckingham's army was outmatched by their enemies and forced to withdraw, although the Duke was able to escape with a significant fraction of his forces into Devon. Despite the inability to capture Buckingham Essex did took a high profile prisoner in the person of the Earl of Moray, James IV's illegitimate son (and Ambassador to England) who had escaped from London into the Buckingham camp.

Whilst Essex was soon forced to return to England once the news of the Battle of Dover became known and with Buckingham unable to continue fighting for the time being Ireland also featured its own share of carnage. Having grown overtly confident the White Rose and his allies descended upon Ormond to smash the pro-Tudor lords and take a bold step towards claiming the throne, only to be met by a force of German mercenaries recruited by Henry before the seas ended up closed for the English. At the Battle of Limerick the Plantagenets and Tudors waged battle, and despite the brave efforts of the White Rose it was the Ormonds who narrowly carried the day. As a result Ireland remains deeply divided, without either side having the advantage.

The Foreign Intervention:

Although the domestic situation had shown signs of improvement for Henry, the war was about to explode into something much larger due to a vast foreign intervention agreed upon by the many allies of Lord Albany: one by one King Manuel of Portugal, King Francis of France and King Christian of Denmark all joined the pro-Scottish coalition and set upon the task of fighting Henry, assembling a powerful joint fleet in the Channel and forcing the divided and outnumbered English fleet into battle. The resulting Battle of Dover was a disaster for the English, much of their vaunted fleet sunk or damaged as the coastline suddenly became available.

The one Monarch who had chosen to take the gamble of invasion was Christian of Denmark, who by virtue of hiring an even larger mercenary corps - despite the risk of bankruptcy - and by bringing in veterans of the Swedish campaign had over 15,000 men landing in Sussex and marching in full speed towards London for a quick storming of the capital. Alas, the combined news of the foreign intervention, the Battle of Gloucester and the decision by Queen Catherine to stand besides her husband had galvanized the population of London to resist the Danish invaders. As the Earl of Essex raced to return to London and the Court was evacuated at the last moment the Danish army was forced to lay siege to the city due to the bitter resistance of its inhabitants.

Death of a Pope:
Leo X found dead in Rome, College of Cardinals braces for a competitive conclave, Church divided among Reformers and Conservatives


It had been a troubled period for the Papacy as the demands for Church Reform and the strong push of others to cast the reformers as heretics continued to tension and divide the Church, and despite the work of Pope Leo X to find a compromise the Papacy found itself under fire as well. The strong rebuke of von Eck instead of Luther, the calls for the Crusade unraveled by the Berwick ambush, the sense of conspiracies in the air after the Pope was almost attacked by a fanatical monk, all factors which continued to fuel the tension even as the Pope found success in renegotiating the Treaty of Tordesillas, managed to receive tentative support from Luther instead of harsh criticism.

It was on this environment that at a morning at the end of December the Pope's servants called for the guard and set the alarms: Pope Leo X was dead. Having led the Church through seven years of papacy and only 45 years old his sudden death undoubtedly shocked Rome as his opponents and supporters once again took to the streets to assert their strong opinions on the Pope, and the Papal troops could only barely contain what could have been a riot. Although the College of Cardinals has been quick to rebuke rumours that contradict the official version, there's constant talk in Rome of a series of events which cast further suspicions on the situation, ranging from the persistent claim that the marriage blessing for the Duke of Albany was manufactured and the Pope possibly manipulated to the whispers that assert that one or more foreign ambassadors were heard to be consulting with other Cardinals on various matters.

While it is not yet known how other monarchs will react to the news some reactions have already taken place within Germany itself, where Luther - rapidly growing in popularity and legitimacy - and his reformers have mourned the death of the Pope and spoken favorably of him, and the ultra-radical reformers have hinted that the Pope could very well have been murdered by the ultra-conservatives on account of the past attempt on his life. As to the Cardinals in Rome, it is up to them - and the foreign Cardinals who can reach the city in time - to choose a new Pope in what promises to be a controversial and highly competitive Conclave.

The Colonization Boom:
Denmark and France enter the colonial game, Portugal reaches the Spice Islands, Military Orders fight the Aztecs


If the past year had begun a large scramble for the New World and for unexplored lands, it was in 1520 that such a drive among European nations became a permanent reality. Although the modifications to the Treaty of Tordesillas only allowed the English to start settling in North America, it was the Danes who once again sought to undermine the Tudors by sending their own large expedition to reach the recently discovered Newfoundland, three different colonies being established despite the harsh conditions and the so far significant cost to the Danish treasury. Although choosing not to send an expedition to America the French took a surprising step as well, having their own expedition land at southernmost corners of Africa and establish a trade port in the Cape of Good Hope. While the port has been established despite the enormous distance, native remain remarkably hostile to the Frenchmen.

The Portuguese, having decided that no further gains could be obtain through usage of their naval power against the Ottomans, resolved to upstage the still missing Howard and Magellan expeditions by sending Sequeira and the Asian fleet to the east in hopes of finding the Islands first. For weeks and months Sequeira fought after leaving Malacca - thus unaware of the Ottoman offensive - and navigated across countless islands and tribes before finally reaching the much hoped objective at the end of the year: several islands that could reasonably be identified as the "Spice Islands" were discovered. Sequeira himself struck a decent relationship with some local tribes, and returned to Malacca with his battered ships filled to the brim with rich spices. Neither the Haspburg or Tudor expeditions are anywhere to be seen as of yet.

In the meantime, King Charles took immediate actions to correct the course of his efforts in the New World following the Cortés fiasco, successfully assuaging the Governor of Cuba and defusing the tension and taking a historic step to continue the new war against the Aztec Empire: the successful signing of an arrangement with the old Military Orders of the Iberian Peninsula (Calatrava, Santiago, Montesa and Alcantara), all of which agreed to travel towards Veracruz and take up the fight against the Aztec heretics in the name of the Lord. Despite the sheer ambition of the enterprise the necessary arrangements and the travels of the vanguard force took up most of the year, the new Crusaders landing in a Veracruz besieged by the Tlaxcaltec forces of Xicotencatl.

By the end of 1520 the Iberian Crusaders had broken up the siege of Veracruz and expanded across the coast by building forts of striking alliances with a handful of minor tribes, although the Aztec Empire and several hostile tribes remained strong or almost unscathed. While reports of growing disease are reaching the Crusaders, it appears the new plague for the natives is yet to reach Tenochtitlan and the Empire itself.

The Wars on the East:
Sweden falls to Denmark, Crimean Khan raids Lithuania, Siege of Moscow ends in failure


The Fall of Sweden:

Despite the popular reaction sparked at Stockholm and other important cities by Lady Christina and supporters of independence, it remained a fact that the Danes had more experienced and larger forces, and could enjoy from a much calmer Sweden after the initial effects of a policy of leniency towards former rebels. With Eric Trolle the new Swedish Regent - and despite the unpopularity of his son - the Swedish rebels could not muster enough forces to break out of their present sieges, and with no help forthcoming from any European monarch (something Christina bitterly lamented and denounced), the cites were soon running low on supplies and realized resistance could no longer be maintained. City after city and noble atfer noble stood down and swore loyalty to Regent Trolle, and by the end of the year Christina herself and her supporters yielded Stockholm.

Although Christian II has finally found victory in Sweden it remains to be seen what he will do with his former opponents, and whether the rebel strength in the country was truly spent.

The Crimean Raid:

Having seriously considered the possibility of raids against Moscow in 1519 or against the Boyar rebels in the first months of 1520, Khan Mehmed I Giray had finally settled on a proper target after being encouraged by many at his court: Lithuania. Reasoning that he had a unique chance and being given a free hand by his Ottoman overlords Khan Mehmed threw himself and thousands of cavalry forces into a series of raids into southern Lithuania and across the border with the Khanate, pillaging and burning entire towns and seizing hundreds - if not thousands of inhabitants - as slaves to be sold. The raid itself has thus far been a substantial blow against Poland-Lithuania and a critical factor in the Boyar success at Moscow, although the Khan's forces have no advanced enough yet to threaten the main cities of Sigismund's domains.

Defeat at Moscow:

The first few weeks of the siege of Moscow had resulted in a stalemate for the Allied forces intending to seize the capital, despite the continuation of the heavy bombardment strategy (which at one point almost forced the surrender of the city) the siege dragged on for months as factor upon factor weakened the pro-Vasily forces remaining on the area. On one hand by the uprising of large parts of the Grand Duchy as more and more nobles and peasants rejected what they saw as the "Polish yoke" and formed their own units to support the rebels at Moscow, and on the other by the negative effects of the Crimean raid on the Polish supply lines. Eventually reinforced by a large Rebel force the Pro-Vasily forces were forced to withdraw from the siege into close positions, and the Moscow Boyars reasserted their defiance by proclaiming Prince Yury Ivanovich as Grand Duke Yury II.

Frisian Revolt crushed:
Hapsburg victory in Frisia, Charles I consolidates his domains, outrage after deposition of the Duke of Guelders


Significantly bolstered by successes such as the canonization of his grandmother Isabella, Charles I continued his work to increase his authority over the separate Hapsburg domains, finding both success and controversy in said process. Efforts to win over the Cortes in Castile met with a mixed reaction as while the concession regarding local officers proved popular - and may have defused a potentially dangerous situation -, the Cortes refused conceding the required tax concessions for the King as decentralization for Castile was denied. The King left soon afterwards for Naples and Austria at a curious stalemate, having failed to obtain the desired resources but with his new Viceroy the Duke of Frias being able to govern without major disturbances thus far.

The King's own tour of both Naples and Austria won him new supporters and increased his popularity and authority in such regions, putting him at an excellent position to enter what seemed like highly productive talks with the Palatinate and Brandenburg to obtain marriages for himself and for Prince Ferdinand. As this took place a Hapsburg field army entered Frisia to put down the revolt for good, and found its task significantly eased by the English blockade of the Rebels and the lack of support for the Frisians from any foreign monarch. Despite the bitter resistance of Grutte Pier and his hardened veterans at the Battle of Hindeloopen the Frisians were outmatched and crushed on the battlefield, Pier dying in battle as his captains became prisoners.

Said victory allowed the Hapsburg to reestablish direct rule over Friesland and thus seemingly secure their standing in the Hapsburg Netherlands, although that particular success would not stop the war. Indeed, the Hapsburg forces left several of the Princes-Electors stunned as their fought their way into Guelders in a shock intervention, smashing the enemy forces and overthrowing the ruling Duke as temporary Hapsburg rule was established over the very uneasy and hostle province. Despite the general support among the Electors for the end of the Frisian revolt the overthrow of the Duke of Guelders has been badly received within the Empire, the marriage negotiations for the Hapsburgs suspended as some of the Electors discuss the matter and whether the Emperor will involve himself on the matter.

The Crusade goes on:
Ottomans raid Portuguese India, Venetians fight piracy in the Mediterranean, Shah Ismail I passes away


Ottoman-Portuguese War:

Fresh from victory at Aden and with Yemen virtually established as an Ottoman possession, Crown Prince Suleiman was allowed to return closer to home to put down the recent revolts in Anatolia, finding success at crushing the rebellion on the battlefield despite the ongoing tension and resentment in the region on his methods. As Sequeira and his fleet left for the Spice Islands, the Ottomans transported a number of ships into the sea and followed through with an offensive against the Portuguese possessions in India, a brutal yet effective campaign which supported by the lack of Portuguese naval power led to the destruction of several Portuguese trading posts and, more importantly, the fall of the key outpost of Goa to the Portuguese, temporarily interrupting the flow of trade.

Raids across the Mediterranean:

The first months of the Crusade were followed by the sudden rise of pirate activity across the Western Mediterranean from the semi-autonomous states in Algiers and Tunis, they respective Sultans seemingly taking the opportunity to launch a series of profitable and bloody raids on several Christian ships which initially proved quite a blow to Western trade. Alas, the Venetians had taken the precaution of intensifying their own patrols across the sea to combat piracy, with the end result of the various pirate fleets meeting reasonably strong Venetian naval squadrons and losing the vast majority of the early naval encounters. By the end of the year the Algiers and Tunis pirate efforts have been left with a bloody nose by the Venetian fleet, but the struggle is far from over.

The death of the Shah:

Across the sea and into the East it seemed as if the relationship between the Ottoman Empire and the Safavid Empire could be improved after years of struggle, the Ottoman economic pressure being finally eased up as both nations began to enjoy a renewed flow of trade. And yet the Safavid Empire continued to struggle over the continued isolation of the Shah, thought to be a broken man following the trauma he experienced during his last war with the Ottomans. Indeed, it appeared to many that it was the Vizier Mirza Shah Hossein who was essentially running the Empire through the vacuum of power, all while the Shaw grew more depressed and uninterested in daily affairs. Despite his legendary accomplishments and his incredibly young age (33), the Shah was found dead by his servants in Tabriz of natural causes, although some have referred to the Shah as having died of a "broken spirit." This leaves the Safavid Empire at a complex spot as Vizier Mirza Shah Hossein will probably take up the Regency for the new young Shah, Prince Tahmasp.

The World at the End of 1520

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« Reply #16 on: November 25, 2018, 02:08:52 AM »
« Edited: November 26, 2018, 02:52:23 AM by Lumine »

Turn Three: 1521


The Cast:
In Western Europe:
Kingdom of France: King Francis I Valois (Windjammer)
Kingdom of England and Ireland: Emperor Henry VIII Tudor (Dkrol)
Kingdom of Portugal: King Manuel I Aviz (HenryWallace)
Kingdom of Castile and Aragon: King Charles I Hapsburg (Spamage)
Kingdom of Scotland: Lord Protector John Stewart, Duke of Albany (Garlan Gunter)
Republic of Venice: Doge Leonardo Loredan (GoTfan)

The Sultan and the Vizier:
Ottoman Empire: Sultan Selim I Osman (Dereich)
Safavid Empire: Vizier Mirza Shah Hossein (Dr_Novella)

The Rulers in the East:
Kingdom of Denmark and Norway: King Christian II Oldenburg (JacksonHitchcock)
Kingdom of Hungary and Bohemia: King Louis II Jagiellon (YPestis25)
Kingdom of Poland and Lithuania: King Sigismund I Jagiellon (Kingpoleon)
Teutonic Knights: Grand Master Albrecht von Hohenzollern (NewTennesseanPolitician)
Grand Duchy of Moscow: Grand Duke Vasily III Rurik (King Saul)


Player Crisis:

Francis I Valois:
-Popularity: High
-Prestige: High
-Economy: Medium

Your Majesty,

-Victory at the sea has smashed the English fleet and limited use of troops has prevented major economic damage, but the Tudors are still standing in what promises to be a long war for the British Islands. To that it must be added that the recently landed colonists in the Cape are facing hard times due to the sheer hostility of the natives, and will probably require a steady and expense flow of resources to maintain the first French colony. How deeply will you commit to the war to your colonial efforts?

-After the sudden death of Leo X a new Papal Conclave is about to begin, and one in which French influence may very well prove decisive on account of the French cardinals and those who have held pro-French views thus far. Both the French-born cardinals and your Ambassador to Rome await with great interest your strategy – or whether you’ll involve yourself at all – on the coming election.

-Due to ill health Suzanne, Duchess of Bourbon has died at last, leaving the powerful Constable of Bourbon a widow without sons to carry the claims of Suzanne to a vast portion of the lands and titles held by Bourbon. While the Constable has proclaimed his right to hold that inheritance as outlined on his wife’s will, Queen Mother Louise has wasted no time pushing her own claim and effectively undermine the Constable with some influential groups, leaving both sides with plenty of supporters for their claims. How is the coming dispute to be handled?

Henry VIII Tudor:
-Popularity: Low
-Prestige: Medium
-Economy: Very Low

Your Majesty,

-Although your actions on the succession have brought back support from Queen Catherine and many in the high nobility, the situation in the British Islands is dire. With the fleet lost and a Danish army besieging London England is now under attack from a vast French-Scottish-Portuguese-Danish coalition which does not only outnumber your forces, but that is in control of more resources as well. Can you turn things around and gain the upper hand against the odds?

-Due to the invasion of England and the high cost of the war the treasury is almost empty, making it hard to pay for extra investments such as the mercenary forces in Ireland. With new sources of funding being decisive to keep your rule over the islands afloat your advisors have gathered to discuss how to obtain the necessary resources. Do you have any plans to replenish the treasury?

-Although your energies are bound to be spent on the Anglo-Scottish War, there are also issues to be resolved as Holy Roman Emperor following a series of concerning missives from your Imperial Chancellor. Luther and his followers continue to be on the rise and growing in numbers after they were seen to have the implicit tolerance of the Papacy, Saxony has apparently cut ties with England following the removal of the Duke of Richmond from the succession, and more importantly, the Hapsburg removal of the Duke of Guelders has been widely seen as unlawful and or dangerous. What will you do?

 Manuel I Aviz:
-Popularity: Medium
-Prestige: High
-Economy: Medium

-So far the first year of the crusade against the Ottoman Empire has not gone well for the Kingdom, having lost both the Yemen campaign and Goa following the crippling Ottoman raid against your holdings in India. On the other hand, the discovery of much of the Spice Islands by Sequeira promises incredible wealth should the trade routes be reopened and the Ottomans fought back before they take control over the seas. How will you go from here?

-Encouraging but not fully positive news arrived back from Brazil following the latest efforts toward expansion, noting that on the bright side new – but initially costly - settlements are being built and that the first shipments of Brazilwood have turned a nice profit, even if it will take some time to establish a vast, steady route. On the more negative side, there’s been a heavily negative reaction from natives both towards missionaries and to efforts to enslave them upon rejecting to aid the colonists, leading to the first raids against Portuguese settlements. What will be your instructions to the colonial forces?

-Despite the current losses to the Ottomans your advisers have been quick to point out there are other opportunities to be found in terms of finding new allies in the war, ranging from the promising links established with the Ethiopian Empire to the change in leadership inside the Safavid Empire to the still vassal Kingdom of Ormus, although Ormus itself has to contend with its own disputes with their nominal vassals in Bahrain. Will you seek to form a coalition against the Ottomans with local realms, even if most of them are not Christian?

Charles I Hapsburg:
-Popularity: Medium
-Prestige: Medium
-Economy: Medium

-There are mixed news to be found on your latest campaign in Frisia, which has same time raised your prestige and re-established Hapsburg order in the region and yet invoked the distrust and or wrath of several of the Princes Electors after the Guelders matter, leading to the temporary suspension of your marriage negotiations with Brandenburg and the Palatinate – particularly as both realms will be looking with interest at the Emperor’s reaction – and provoking sustained unrest in Guelders due to the popularity of the deposed Duke. How will you react to this and will you approach the Emperor?

-Your aunt Queen Catherine of England writes a personal missive to you following her decision to rally behind Henry, making a passionate plea for you to save England after the attack of the foreign coalition and arguing that their removal from the throne will cost your realms a relevant and potential ally. Intervention could mean a prolonged, bloody war with the French and all that such a conflict would entail, and yet, can the Hapsburg kingdoms afford the danger of a French dominated England?

-The Pope is dead, and with such an event comes a pivotal moment for the Church. Whilst the Hapsburg cardinals native to your realms are few they are prestigious, and could command additional votes depending on how you side on the reform debate. Will you involve yourself in the Conclave struggle with a candidate of your own and seek the decisive advantage of a pro-Hapsburg pope? And furthermore, should Cardinals serving in high office such as Adrian of Utrecht attend the Conclave?

Duke of Albany:
-Popularity: High
-Prestige: Medium
-Economy: Very Low

-Edinburgh has been saved and with it your Regency, the Scottish nobility and most of the Kingdom rallying under your banner to keep the hated English out and take revenge for Flodden and Berwick. Still, even with the French reinforcements the English still have an able commander and decent forces, the strain placed on your wounds has severely compromised your health and there is no way to predict how successful an invasion of England proper would be. Will you go on the offensive to seize the moment or play a more cautious game?

-While the use of Church funding has allowed you to recruit vast mercenary forces the sheer amount of troops, the cost of mobilizing the Scottish army and the Edinburgh blockade have all hit the Scottish economy hard, making it dubious such investments like the mercenaries can be kept for long unless additional measures are taken. How will you ensure you can continue to support the war without bankrupting Scotland?

-A most concerning rumor has spread from Rome since around the death of the Pope – and now repeated by handful of influential figures of the Church -, arguing that the blessing of your marriage with Margaret Tudor was either falsified or brought upon by dubious means. So far it doesn’t appear to have harmed your position, but with several bishops displeased at your requisitions and an environment of deep distrust within Rome it could pose a problem moving forward. What will you do about it?

Leonardo Loredan:
-Popularity: High
-Prestige: High
-Economy: High

-The decision to dispatch Venetian patrols across the Mediterreanean has proven wise, if also fateful following the so far successful naval battles against the pirate raids of Algiers and Tunis. With both realms seemingly set on continuing the naval campaign it will be important for the Republic to decide whether a more extensive intervention needs to be undertaken to ensure the seas remain free, even thought it might invoke the wrath of the Ottoman Empire. What should be done?

-So far the St. Mark colony has been significantly fortified, as have Cyprus and Crete, and the Venetian Army of professionals begins to take form. The downside of these successes is that the economic cost is steady and high, and has already begun to eat away at the treasury despite it being extensive enough to afford some time for preparations. How will you address the rising cost of keeping St. Marks, the army and these extensive new fortifications?

-With the Pope dead and the Conclave upon us it will also fall to Venice to play a potentially significant role in it, as the three Venetian cardinals on the Vatican are both wealthy and willing to listen to your thoughts as to who should become the new Pope. With your Cardinals having the potential to play kingmaker at some point, how will you handle the matter?

Christian II Oldenburg:
-Popularity: High
-Prestige: Very High
-Economy: Very Low

-Victory has been found in Sweden at last with the surrender of Stockholm and Lady Christina, allowing Regent Eric Trolle to once again claim the Kingdom of Sweden as part of the Kalmar Union as your humble – if supposedly semi-autonomous – vassal. Still, with the war over and your prestige and popularity in Denmark proper at an all-time high it is now necessary to decide what to do with the defeated rebels and their leadership (Christina included), particularly as figures such as Archbishop Trolle demand harsh punishments and warn leniency could just as easily bring another rebellion. What should be done?

-The downside to your many enterprises in Sweden, England and the expansion of colonies in Newfoundland has been the utter collapse of the Danish treasury due to the combined cost of the wars and colonial efforts, making it even doubtful your vast mercenary forces in England can be payed should new sources of revenue and funding not be found. Can you ensure the treasury finds some respite before debts start to accumulate?

-As per your desires Danish settlers currently build several new settlements in Newfoundland and mark the foundations of a potential colonial empire, with the downside that the terrible weather and apparent lack of economic opportunities makes the colonization efforts hard and highly expensive. Will you seek to make the Newfoundland settlements profitable through alternate means, and continue their expansion despite the large cost?

Louis II Jagiellon:
-Popularity: Low
-Prestige: Low
-Economy: Very Low

-The appointment of Istvan Werboczy has allowed you some respite and earned you a thus far capable and loyal servant, if one under constant attack and criticisms from both the Cardinal and the Voivodes of Transylvania. Now fifteen years of age it is believed your personal actions become more and more credible, although it will take quite an achievement or dramatic event for Hungary and Bohemia to fully recognize you as in control of the Kingdoms. Additionally, despite the ill health of the Cardinal the new Papal Election affords an interesting opportunity to be exploited. How will you navigate court politics and the Conclave?

-Following much debate and deadlock the council of nobles in Buda has made slow progress, but at the very least it has had some effectiveness in bringing some nobles on side and raising the prestige of the Crown. So far some agreements have been reached in terms of the Tripartitum regarding the nobility’s privileges (and serfdom), and despite much opposition some limited census efforts have been reluctantly approved. Alas, the nobles remain opposed to the new proposals for a militia system and display their distrust at empowering the crown with new military forces, a significant political roadblock. How will you address it?

-It appears to the eyes of many observers that the Hapsburgs have either committed an insult of sorts or shown their displeasure by seeking a different marriage arrangement for Ferdinand von Hapsburg than your sister, match that would have taken place already were it not for the Guelders controversy. The court appears divided as some call to break ties with the Hapsburgs and take a hostile view of the proxy Queen still in Austria, while others would prefer to mend the relationship and ensure Ferdinand does marry Mary. What should be done?

Sigismund I Jagiellon:
-Popularity: High
-Prestige: High
-Economy: Very Low

-After a prolonged struggle the attempt to siege Moscow and place Vasily back on the throne has failed, resulting in a significant cost despite the Polish forces falling back in good order. Even worse has been the large-scale raid of the Crimean Khan across the south of Lithuania, costing you several vassals to slavery and delivering a harsh blow to the economy at a time in which the treasury is approaching critical levels. How will you repel the Khan and wage the coming campaign in Moscow?

-Due to the costs of waging war on Moscow, the losses sustained because of the Khan and the latest royal expenses the Polish treasury – much like other European kingdoms – it at very low levels and in need of extra revenue, leading Signor Machiavelli and the new advisers to suggest that it is finally time to face the Sejm and find way to the crown better funded to pursue your various projects, although of course it will always be difficult to change an status quo currently beneficial to the nobility. What should be done?

-In the aftermath of the fall of Sweden to Christian of Denmark a few groups of Swedish rebels – including nobles – have entered Polish-Lithuanian territory in hopes of asylum, petitioning the Crown to take them in and grant them protection from what they swear will be a harsh revenge on behalf of Christian after his victory. Will you grant refuge to the Swedish rebels at the risk of entering into a controversy with the Danish King?

Albrecht von Hohenzollern:
-Popularity: Very Low
-Prestige: Low
-Economy: Low

-Following a brutal campaign in Moscow the main army of the Order stands damaged and somewhat exhausted, having suffered the most punishment due to the Vasily loyalists melting away and the Polish forces often leaving the offensives to the Knights. While a continuation of the campaign is certainly possible there are some clear signs of dissent between the Knights, and with the Crimeans attacking your allies it is uncertain whether your ally will continue to support the Moscow intervention. Will the Knights continue to fight?

-Seemingly unpunished after his act of defiance Master von Plettenberg and the Livonian Knights have started to make more steps concerning their autonomy, making constant efforts to free themselves from the influence of the Teutonic Order while the lack of response to the concerns of your own Knights over the treaty with Poland has seemingly added more fire into the concerns at home. What should be done about this?

-Although the Teutonic Order has no direct influence on the Papal Election per se through Cardinals – other than the potential case of the Mainz Elector -, the next Pope and his vision of the Order’s future could very well prove decisive to you. Will you seek to influence the Papal Election in any way?

Vasily III Rurik:
-Popularity: Very Low
-Prestige: Low
-Economy: Low

-Despite a long siege defeat has been found at the gates of Moscow, and your brother crowned as roughly half the duchy has risen to his tentative manner. However, your closest supporters remain adamant that the war is not yet lost, and that it can always be possible to raise another army or take the fight to Yury once again with the proper support and planning. Finding yourself at the most critical moment of your reign as Grand Duke, what will you do?

-Although it could be quite a risk in terms of a reaction, some have seen in the defeat of the Swedes an opportunity, arguing volunteers could be found among the Swedish exiles or by encouraging those residing in regions such as Finland to escape Danish rule. While it could certainly be a temporary solution to the loss of your more experienced troops, it might also mean invoking the wrath of Christian II. What will you do?

-After the negative impact of the Teutonic-Polish intervention within the Grand Duchy a curious divide has begun to emerge within your camp, as a still small number of nobles wonders if given the dire situation it might not be wiser for different and new – even if temporary – allies, even as the majority insist the support of the Knights and the Polish King is required for eventual victory. Will you seek a different set of alliances?

Selim I Osman:
-Popularity: Very High
-Prestige: Very High
-Economy: High

-So far the early part of the Crusade called by the Pope and other European monarchs has been contained successfully, Yemen being claimed for the Empire and Goa and such other Portuguese Indian settlements having been at least temporarily captured. Still, other potential rivals such as the Venetians or the Poles could still be drawn into the war by areas of tension such piracy and the Crimean raids. How will the efforts to defeat the Crusade proceed?

-It has become a persistent rumor that efforts by the Kingdom of Hungary to increase its security at the border are underway, something which the local Governor has found both insulting and a source of concern. Indeed, a missive from that Governor argues the Empire should demand the return of the annual tribute it was once received from the Hungarians to keep young King Louis on his place, even at the risk of increasing tensions. Will you make such a demand?

-Following up the easing up on trade with Persia new caravans has slowly started to enter the roads once again, so far helping to cover a significant part of the cost of current military operations and returning some important materials back into the Empire, if at a slow pace. Should the process of economic re-integration be accelerated despite the complex political situation of the Safavids, or left as it currently is?
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« Reply #17 on: November 26, 2018, 02:04:14 AM »

The Royal Families of Europe, 1521


The Aviz:

Monarch: Manuel I of Portugal (b. 1469), married to Eleanor of Austria (b. 1498)
Issue:
1.   Joao (b. 1502), Crown Prince
2.   Isabel (b. 1503)
3.   Beatriz (b. 1504)
4.   Luis (b. 1506)
5.   Fernando (b. 1507)
6.   Alfonso (b. 1509)
7.   Henrique (b. 1512)
8.   Duarte (b. 1515)
9.     Pedro (b. 1520)
Important Relatives:
10.   Eleanor (b. 1458), the King’s surviving widowed sister

The Osmans:
Monarch: Sultan Selim I (b. 1470), married to Hafsa Sultan (b. 1475)
Issue:
1.   Suleiman (b. 1494), Crown Prince, married to Mahidevran (b. 1500)
2.     Hatice (b. 1496), Beyhan (b. 1497), Hafize (b. 1499), Fatma (b. 1500), Hafsa (b. 1500) and Sah (b. 1507), the Sultan's daughters
Important Relatives:
3.   Mahmud (b. 1512), Mustafa (b. 1515) and Mehmed (b. 1521), Suleiman’s sons
4.   Üveys Pasha (b. 1498), the Sultan’s stepson

The Tudors:
Monarch: Henry VII of England (b. 1491), married to Catherine of Aragon (b. 1485)
Issue:
1.   Mary (b. 1516), betrothed to Joachim Hector of Brandenburg (b. 1505)
2.     Henry, Duke of Richmond (b. 1518)
Important Relatives:
3.   Margaret, Queen Dowager of Scotland (b. 1489), the King’s elder sister
4.   James V, King of Scotland (b. 1512), Margaret’s son and Margaret Douglas (b. 1515), Margaret’s daughter
5.   Mary, former Queen of France (b. 1496), the King’s younger sister, married to Charles Brandon, Duke of Suffolk (b. 1484)
6.   Henry Brandon (b. 1516), Frances Brandon (b. 1517), Eleanor Brandon (1519), Suffolk and Mary’s children
7.   Edward Stafford, Duke of Buckingham (b. 1478), distant relative of the King
8.   Richard de la Pole, the White Rose, Earl of Suffolk (b. 1480), Yorkist claimant

The Valois:
Monarch: Francis I of France (b. 1494), married to Claude, Duchess of Britanny (b. 1499)
Issue:
1.   Charlotte (b. 1516)
2.   Francis (b. 1518), Dauphin of France
3.     Henry (b. 1519)
4.     Madeleine (b. 1520)
Important Relatives:
5.   Louise of Savoy (b. 1476), the King’s mother
6.   Marguerite de Valois  (b. 1492), the King’s sister
7.   Charles, Duke of Alencon (b. 1489), Marguerite’s husband and prince du sang
8.   Charles, Duke of Bourbon (b. 1490), prince du sang
9.   Charles, Duke of Vendome (b. 1489), prince du sang

The Hapsburgs:
Monarch: Charles I of Castile and Aragon (b. 1500)
Issue: None.
Important Relatives:
1.   Joanna I, Queen of Castile (b. 1479), the King’s mother
2.   Ferdinand (b. 1501), the King’s brother and heir, betrothed to Anne of Hungary
3.   Eleanor, Queen of Portugal (b. 1498), the King’s sister, married to Manuel I of Portugal
4.   Isabella, Queen of Denmark (b. 1501), the King’s sister, married to Christian II of Denmark
5.   Mary, Queen of Hungary (b. 1505), the King’s sister, married to Louis II of Hungary
6.   Catherine (b. 1507)
7.   Margaret of Austria (b. 1480), the King’s aunt, widowed
8.   Catherine of Aragon (b. 1485), the King’s aunt, married to Henry VIII of England

The Stewarts:
Monarch: James V of Scotland (b. 1512)
Issue: None
Important Relatives:
1.   Margaret, Queen Dowager of Scotland (b. 1489), the King’s mother
2.   Margaret Douglas (b. 1515), The King's half sister
3.   John Stewart, Duke of Albany (b. 1481), Regent of Scotland and heir presumptive

The Jagiellons of Hungary:
Monarch: Louis II of Hungary and Bohemia (b. 1506), married to Mary of Hapsburg (b. 1505)
Issue: None.
Important Relatives:
1.   Anne of Hungary (b. 1503), the King's sister (b. 1501)
2.   Sigismund I (b. 1467), King of Poland, the King's uncle

The Jagiellons of Poland-Lithuania:
Monarch: Sigismund I of Poland and Lithuania (b. 1467), married to Bona Sforza (b. 1494)
Issue:
1.     Jan (b. 1499)
2.     Regina (b. 1501)
3.     Katarzyna (b. 1503)
4.   Hedwig (b. 1513)
5.   Anna (b. 1515)
6.     Isabella (b. 1519)
7.     Nikolas (b. 1520), Crown Prince
Important Relatives:
8.     Louis II of Hungary and Bohemia (b. 1506), the King's nephew
9.   Barbara (b. 1478), the King's surviving sister, Duchess Consort of Saxony

The Oldenburgs:
Monarch: Christian II of Denmark and Norway (b. 1481), married to Isabella of Austria (b. 1501)
Issue:
1.   John (b. 1518), Crown Prince
2.   Dorothea (b. 1520)
Important Relatives:
3.   Francis (b. 1497), the King’s brother
4.   Elizabeth  (b. 1485), the King’s sister, married to Joachim Nestor, Elector of Brandenburg
5.   Frederick (b. 1471), the King's uncle, married to Sophie of Pomerania (b. 1498)
6.     Christian (b. 1503) and Dorothea (b. 1504), Frederick's son and daughter

The Safavids:
Monarch: Tahmasp I of the Safavid Empire (b. 1514)
Issue: None.
Important Relatives:
1.     Tajlu Khanum (b. 1485), the Shah's mother
2.   Alqas (b. 1515), Sam (b. 1518) and Bahram (b. 1518), the Shah's brothers
3.     Gunish (b. 1507), Pari (b. 1508), Zainab (b. 1519), Farangis (b. 1519), Mahin (b. 1519), the Shah's sisters

The Ruriks:
Monarch: Vasily III of Moscow (b. 1479)
Issue: None.
Important Relatives:
1.   Yury II of Moscow (b. 1480), Dimitry (b. 1481) and Andrey (b. 1490), the Grand Duke's unmarried brothers
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« Reply #18 on: November 26, 2018, 02:10:59 AM »

Current Armies and Navies:

Kingdom of France:
Currently has limited forces in Scotland.
Can mobilize up to three and a half field armies.
18 ships.

Kingdom of England and Ireland:
Currently has a field army in Scotland and another in England, plus mercenaries in Ireland.
Cannot mobilize more armies.
13 ships.

Kingdom of Portugal:
Currently has limited forces in Brazil and the Spice Islands.
Can mobilize up to half a field army.
54 ships.

Kingdom of Castile and Aragon:
Currently has a field army in Guelders, and Military Orders in America.
Can mobilize up to five field armies.
25 ships.

Kingdom of Scotland:
Currently has a field army plus mercenaries in Scotland, plus mercenaries in Ireland.
Cannot mobilize more armies.
No navy.

Republic of Venice:
Currently has a partial standing army in Venice.
Can mobilize up to one field army.
118 ships.

Kingdom of Denmark and Norway:
Currently has half a field army in Sweden, plus half a field army and mercenary forces in England.
Cannot mobilize more armies.
29 ships.

Kingdom of Hungary and Bohemia:
Can mobilize up to two field armies.
No navy.

Kingdom of Poland and Lithuania:
Currently has a field army in the Moscow area.
Can mobilize up to two field armies.
5 ships.

Teutonic Knights:
Currently has a field army in the Moscow area.
Cannot mobilize more armies.
5 ships.

Grand Duchy of Moscow:
Currently has a partial field army in the Moscow area.
Cannot mobilize more armies.
No navy.

Ottoman Empire:
Currently fields one field army in Yemen.
Can mobilize up to seven field armies.
95 ships.

Safavid Empire:
Can mobilize up to four field armies.
No navy.
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« Reply #19 on: November 26, 2018, 02:51:18 AM »
« Edited: November 26, 2018, 11:14:13 PM by Lumine »

Special Event: 1521 Conclave


Preview: Following the sudden and suspicious death of Pope Leo X (Medici), the College of Cardinals is summoned to Rome to choose a new Pope at a time in which the Catholic Church faces strong dissent over the Reform debate within Germany and controversy over the so far unsuccessful crusade against Selim I and the Ottoman Empire. With the Medici family weakened yet desperate to keep their hold on the Papacy and enemy factions such as the Colonna preparing to challenge their supremacy, and with several prominent kings with Cardinals to their name at war with each other, there are no guarantees as to who might seize the Chair of St. Peter.

Rules: The deadline for this Special Event is Friday afternoon. Until then players will be able to fight this election through intrigue, bribery, negotiations and other moves (creativity will be rewarded), and will have the added benefit of having Cardinals who may follow their voting orders in the case of France, Hungary, Venice, Spain and England. A Pope can only be elected with a 2/3 vote, the number depending on how many Cardinals get to the Conclave.

The College of Cardinals:

The Medici Faction: Led by the respected Cardinal Giulio de Medici and boasting the largest numbers with thirteen relatively solid votes (Cardinals de Medici, Armellini de Medici, Cibo, Salviati, Ridolfi, Pucci, Passerini, Rangoni, Cesi, Numai, Gonzaga, Petrucci and Campeggio), the Medici Faction is generally percieved to be politically moderate on questions of reform and the political struggle between monarchs, having tried to keep the Papacy stable and navigate the crisis under Leo X and seen as keen to retain its current privileges rather than willing to accept many changes. While Giulio de Medici is their natural candidate, the fact that the faction is fully Italian means several possible compromise candidates are part of it.

The Colonna Faction: Led by the ambitious Cardinal Pompeo Colonna, the Colonna-aligned Cardinals are the second strongest faction by virtue of numbers with ten supporters (Colonna, Piccolomini, Giacobazzi, Ciocchi del Monte, de Grassis, Dominico de Cupis, Accolti, Ponzetti, Fieschi and Pallavicini), and are generally the rivals of the Medici through their own Papal ambitions and the generally conservative nature of their Cardinals. Whilst Colonna himself has been known for his past support for the Hapsburgs, the Cardinal and his supporters are nearly as pragmatic as the Medici, and can also boast candidates that extend beyond Colonna.

The Orsini-Farnese Faction: Less organized as a group than the Medicis and the Colonnas, the supporters of Cardinal Franciotto Orsini (including Orsini and Corneto) and Cardinal Alessandro Farnese (Farnese, Ferrero, Viterbo and della Valle) have loosely banded together at the start of the Conclave as a six-vote group, intending to play kingmaker depending on how the Conclave goes. Due to the variety of the group both Orsini and Farnese are seen as possible candidates and in the case of Farnese even a strong challenger, although they face the problem of disunity given Orsini's anti-Medici and pro-French views and Farnese's more open minded views.

The French Faction: Years of efforts by Louis XII have been undone by the deaths in recent years of several key French cardinals, but the faction can still command six votes with the combination of French cardinals de Castelnau Clermont de Lodčve, de Bourbon de Vendome and de Lorraine and the strongly pro-French Italians Cardinals Soderini, Scaramuzzia Trivulsio and Agostino Trivulzio. While the three Italians will not blindly follow every command of King Francis, they're believed to be a reliable block for their master's intentions, the Trivulsios seen as the more plausible candidates.

The Hapsburg Faction: Standing at the same number than the French - six -, the Cardinals seen to be close to Charles I are a varied group in terms of nationality, combining both reformist (Utrecht) and conservative (Cajetan) views. They include the Spaniards de Vich and de Carvajal, the Dutch Adrian of Utrecht, the German Matthias Lang and the Italians Cajetan and Cesarini, all of which combine into a group which despite its numbers has at least three plausible candidates in Carvajal, Cajetan and Utrecht.

The Venetian Faction: The smallest organized faction, the Doge of Venice can command the respect and tentative support of the three Venetian cardinals (Grimani, Cornaro and Pisano), all of them linked to the wealthy merchant and noble families of Venice. Having taken a relatively pro-French view due to the alliance, they have nonetheless not lost their capacity for pragmatism and a keen interest for advancement.

The Other Cardinals: Closing up the list are the remaining six Cardinals, all of them non italians: Brandenburg, the pro-indulgence Elector of Mainz; de La Marck, the moderate from Liege; Schinner, the fiery anti French Swiss; Bakocz, the powerful but ailing Hungarian; Wolsey, Emperor Henry's Chancellor and the young Cardinal Infante Alfonso of Portugal, not allowed to vote until turning 18 years of age in 1527. Out of them both Wolsey and Bakocz are thought to have serious Papal aspirations, but will require the support of several Italians or several monarchs to stand a chance.

With a total of 50 Cardinals and 49 eligible to vote, the highest possible number of Cardinals to be elected is 33.

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« Reply #20 on: November 26, 2018, 03:02:10 AM »
« Edited: November 26, 2018, 10:34:08 AM by Lumine »

Mirza Shah Hossein:
-Popularity: Low
-Prestige: Medium
-Economy: Medium

-Following seven years as the Vizier of the Empire, you are now in command after the sudden death of your friend the Shah, leaving the seven years old Tahmasp as the nominal ruler of the Empire in need of a regency. Still, much work remains ahead if you wish for your regency to be consolidated, having not only to contend with the Shah's mother Tajlu Khanum but with the divided Qizilbash tribes, their disdain for the native Iranians and their own desire for power. How will you cement your rule?

-The end of the embargo on the Empire due to Selim's orders has averted a crisis for now, and the renewed flow of trade is significantly aiding the economy to recover despite its limited size for the time being. How should the relationship with the Ottomans be handled now? Should the opportunity be seized while they're busy with the Crusader? Should stronger ties be sought and reconciliation enacted?

-The reopening of trade means products such as silk will soon reach European markets again - particularly in the Italian cities -, opening the door to renewed diplomatic and economic relationships with Europe beyond the Portuguese enclave at Ormus. Indeed, many wonder whether you will take a posture of isolation or seek to engage with the Westerners despite the potential risks. What will you do?
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« Reply #21 on: December 05, 2018, 02:22:49 AM »

Bernardino de Carvajal elected Pope Martin VI!
Cardinals reject Reformist trend following six weeks of Conclave,
Pope vows to fight for the Faith in America, Germany and against the Turks


The aftermath of the sudden death of Leo X had left Rome in a very tense situation, the Cardinals gathering after a couple of weeks once those foreign cardinals who could attend managed to reach the city. Originally conceived as an internal affair of sorts in which the Medici would attempt hold the line against alternate candidates and possibly win by sheer force of numbers of attrition, the Conclave was soon to turn in an unexpected direction following the arrival of declarations released both by Emperor Henry and King Francis, the one condemning Luther for his views on indulgences and the Papacy, the other actually siding with the reforming priest, stating that the Pope had been murdered and promising an investigation.

Leaving aside the dramatic effects within the Holy Roman Empire and the Kingdom of France and with the Conclave allegedly not featuring financial attempts by monarchs to sway the Cardinals, only the first couple of ballots featured the expected dynamic as it became clear the Medici faction lacked the influence to overcome the Colonnas on their own and had been weakened by the rising prominence of the reform debate within the Conclave due to the perceived stances of Leo X in the matter. Indeed, although Henry's proclaims hurt his standing with reformers and Wolsey's candidacy only survived the third and fourth ballots before collapsing his prestige had been dramatically bolstered with the conservatives and even the moderate italians, many of which had been hoping for a defense of the Church by a foreign monarch.

It was ironically the statement by King Francis which drew ire and condemnation from most of the College of Cardinals - and particularly the Italian cardinals -, as the King's support for Luther was considered both dangerous for the Church and seemingly agreeing with the controversial renunciation of papal infallibility. Following low support for Cardinal de Lorraine as the would-be French candidate, attempts to then support the Medici faction may have backfired as their apparent reformist ties (which Cardinal Giulio de Medici repeatedly denied) became played upon by others. Still, even with the Medici weakened by the reform debate and the Conclave outraged enough to turn into a conservative direction no candidate could be elected for several successive days, an attempt to elect Cardinal Cajetan sabotaged by the Medici and  the Colonnas doing the same with the Venetians and with the prospective Hapsburg candidacy of the absent Adrian of Utrecht, seen as too reformist given the climate.

The final two weeks of the Conclave were mostly spent on a repeated deadlock as several attempts at compromise Italian candidates were sabotaged by either side, the Medici and allies sinking pro-Colonna candidates and viceversa, and while an attempt to elect Alessandro Farnese was speculated to have come within two votes of victory failure to gain additional votes severely hurt Farnese's standing. As news of further developments started to come and instill pressure on the Cardinals to elect a Pope soon, the unlikely choice that re-emerged as a papal candidate was Spanish cardinal Bernardino de Carvajal, the brilliant and ambitious diplomat who had both served as the Ambassador of the Catholic Monarchs (of which one of them was now Saint Isabella) and almost became pope in 1503, only to fall into temporary disgrace under Julius II.

With the Hapsburg cardinals standing in a much stronger position with the Italians than the French due to Carvajal's conservatism, the Tudor condemnation of Luther and the French reformist push, the Spanish candidate took off at the final series of votes, accessus taking place once the penultimate ballot showed him as three votes short of the two-thirds, almost as well as Farnese had done. Despite the vote being secret, ambassadors were quick to report that the Hapsburgs, Colonnas, Farnese and most of the non-italians probably were the ones to stand behind Carvajal at that penultimate vote, the last one giving him a clear majority caused either by considerable Italian defections or a possible arrangement with Cardinal Medici.

Either way, following six weeks of intense infighting and with most of the Cardinals seemingly determined to "protect the Church", the 65 years old Carvajal - his age encouraging some swing votes that the papacy might be short - became the third Spanish pope, taking on the name "Martin VI" in apparent honor of the Pope who had reunified the Church and fought back against heresy. Much remains to be seen on how this dramatic shift of power in Rome will influence the political situation in Europe, but Pope Martin has started his reign by declaring the need to convert the savages in America - thus seemingly legitimizing the Hapsburg war against the Aztecs -, fight the heretics in Germany - thus condemning Luther - and speaking in favorable terms of the Crusade against the Turks despite its early setbacks.
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« Reply #22 on: December 11, 2018, 10:41:02 PM »

End of 1521


Anglo-Scottish War:
Hapsburgs invade Portugal and Milan, Henry VIII loses Ireland but cements hold over England, Constable of Bourbon revolts


The Battle for England

Facing a critical situation and the potential loss of his throne, Henry VIII decided the time was ripe to strike back at his enemies, and despite significant setbacks elsewhere managed to prevent a Tudor collapse in England itself. Although the institution of further taxes by the remnants of Parliament sparked riots in several regions and allowed the Duke of Buckingham to revive his rebellion across Cornwall, it temporarily prevented collapse despite the sheer unwillingness of several to pay the required sums. Taking command of his forces and recalling Suffolk from the North the English forces coalesced around the besieged London as Buckingham and his rebels joined the Danish camp, and with a failure by the Hapsburgs to ferry an army to England – due to the superiority of the French and Danish navy – the stage was set.

With Henry still possessing the advantage of numbers and the support of the besieged population of London it was left to the Danes and to Buckingham to attempt a defensive stand, and despite a brave effort it was the English who decisively carried the day. Thus the Battle of London seemed to temporarily spare the Tudors who what seemed like imminent collapse, the further revolt of some cities offset by Henry being granted the title of “Defender of the Faith” by the Pope, by the capture of Buckingham after victory and by the melting away of much of the Danish mercenary forces – with the unintended effect of creating large groups of independents raiders -, leaving the survivors to take refuge at Dover.

The Scottish-Irish Campaigns

Despite the weakened state of Lord Albany preventing him from being personally active – although he had the joy of his mistress giving birth to a healthy illegitimate son -, the Scottish Regent spared no effort to continue the war and weaken the Tudors, even as the remnants of the Tudor Fleet stormed into Edinburgh, blockaded the city and dealt harsh blows to Scottish trade and the merchant class. With the superior Allied naval forces – particularly the French fleet - eventually confronting and sinking most of the English remnants at the Naval Battle of Edinburgh (thus consolidating Allied domination of the seas), the Scottish armies marched into lost territory after Suffolk’s withdrawal, recovering virtually all lost ground and then successfully sieging and storming Carlisle, thus opening the way into England despite Berwick remaining on Tudor hands.

The Lord Protector was also more successful than other monarchs at keeping his military efforts funded – if barely so – through various measures such as the sale of knighthoods or titles, although further planned expenditures could simply not be enacted. More controversial was a renewed effort to seize Church tithes to fund the war, this time drawing the explicit condemnation of large parts of the Scottish clergy and provoking outrage in Rome as well. Although rumors have suggested Pope Martin to be struggling with a ruling on the Albany-Margaret Tudor match, it is believed by some these efforts may have pushed the Pope into being close to declare the marriage null.

In the meantime and across the sea, it was time for the Yorkists to strike back. Already enjoying superiority in numbers following defections in the English mercenary force and a decision to focus on raids rather than meeting de la Pole in battle, further reinforcements by a Portuguese landing and rising support among Irish clans bolstered the ranks of the Yorkist claimant, allowing him to overrun the pro-Tudor clans and claim victory across most of the island – even if most of the surviving enemy mercenaries have turned to banditry -. His personal prestige raised and no longer having to compete with the imprisoned Buckingham, De la Pole’s supporters gathered at Tara and proclaimed him both High King of Ireland and, again, King Richard IV of England.

Charles I enters the War

Following constant pleas by Queen Catherine of England and seemingly resolved to support his would-be ally, Charles I made the fateful decision to enter the Anglo-Scottish War on the side of the English, a much needed-reinforcement to the challenged cause of Emperor Henry. Even though diplomatic efforts in Germany stalled amidst increasing opposition by the Imperial Princes and the naval blockade preventing a Spanish landing in England, King Charles I took the field from Austria and led one of his armies into Italy, taking the French forces in Milan by surprise. Following a tough but successful battle against the French garrisons forces Charles entered Milan and seized most of the Duchy, a critical blow to Valois aspirations in Northern Italy.

More decisive was the decision to follow through with an invasion of Portugal from his Castilian domains, the Portuguese armies mobilized and fighting in Ireland or in Asia. Launching two separate armies into Braganza and the Algarve the Hapsburg forces dashed into Portugal despite a brave attempts at a resistance, one of their armies – even though several isolated areas refused to surrender – reaching Lisbon and placing the city under siege after an initial assault met with failure. With the Portuguese Empire seemingly suffering a crippling blow and with its domestic resources fueling the Spanish war effort, the situation was pushed further by the death of King Manuel I of wounds sustained during the unsuccessful assault, young Prince John being crowned King John III as courtiers debated on whether to abandon the city and sail into exile.

A Revolt in France

Having taken on a surprisingly pro-Church reform course of action and with policies aimed at tolerance, King Francis’s already controversial efforts were brought into further conflict upon a public statement for support of Luther, which while making Francis remarkably popular on pro-reform areas of Germany and even Switzerland – and among humanistic thinkers – drew both the ire of Rome (leading to the Spanish victory at the Conclave) and significant dissent in France as well, many resenting both the support for the “heretical” reformer and past decisions such as the inclusion of Jewish people into the Kingdom. This controversy was given a further voice when the King chose to side with the Queen Mother on the matter of the Bourbon succession, leading the outraged Constable of Bourbon to decide his time to strike was ripe. As several cities saw attacks against pro-reformers or the Jewish ghettoes the Constable raised his army and revolted against the Crown, denouncing Francis as supporting heresy just as the religious conflict appears to heat up.

Chaos in the Empire:
Pope threatens Luther with excommunication, Princes rally against Tudors and Hapsburgs, violence is on the rise


While not the scenario of battles in the Anglo-Scottish War thus far, it was across the Holy Roman Empire – and Germany itself – that some of the most dramatic conflicts of the year took place. With Emperor Henry Tudor busy waging war in England the Empire has faced significant trouble over a lack of direction, the Imperial Chancellor allegedly unsatisfied with the Emperor’s lack of input and his support for the Hapsburg seizure of Guelders, a decision which was met with condemnation by several princes and led to heated discussion in the Imperial Diet itself, just as Guelders and the Frisian region itself show increased instance of violence against Hapsburg troops. So far attempts to defuse the situation had failed – and it is rumored a foreign power may be rallying the princes against the Hapsburgs -, denying King Charles’s marriage attempts for another year.

The religious controversy has also taken on a dramatic tone as the election of Pope Martin VI cemented a more conservative direction by the Church. Strongly backed by most of the College of Cardinals to bring the heretics to heel and despite acknowledging potential avenues for reform, Martin denounced the statements of reformers such as Luther regarding papal infallibility in a harsh tone, ending for now the conciliatory policies of Leo X. The publishing of a series of detailed papal bulls outlining Luther’s “mistakes” or “heretical statements” seemingly galvanized the anti-Lutheran side, while at the same time receiving condemnation in large regions of Germany – and particularly by the Saxon Elector -. Luther himself felt compelled to reverse his past statements regarding conciliation, this time redoubling attacks on the papacy and earning himself a direct command from Rome: either to retract himself or face immediate excommunication of himself and his followers.

This series of developments has increased the level of violence across the Empire itself, the Teutonic pledge to Poland, the religious conflict and the controversy over Guelders all creating their own controversies and violent instances. Indeed, reports have already begun to talk of university students attacking pro-papal monks or speakers, of conservative authorities arresting outspoken reformists, and even more disconcerting, isolated riots by peasants in some areas of the south of Germany.

Colonial Expansion:
Military Orders advance against Aztecs, France holds out in the Cape, Portugal decentralizes efforts


Even though the growing war in Europe has forced most rulers to place their full attention into the conflict and how to react to it, further colonial efforts continue to be undertaken by several nations to both expand and consolidate their holdings. The besieged and threatened colonists in the Cape have received renewed support from France that has allowed them to hold onto the settlement and expand it in a limited fashion in what promises to be a bloody struggle with the native tribes. Despite the growing financial crisis threatening to collapse the new Danish colonies in Newfoundland, further explorations have created new settlements even as serious question arise on how to feed them. Portugal – before the disastrous invasion of the homeland – both redoubled efforts to bring the natives in Brazil to heel (in what continues to be a brutal conflict) and shifted policies towards decentralization by introduction of a Brazil Company, although the Hapsburg invasion has led to fears that the Brazilian colonies may collapse if not properly supplied from the homeland.

Finally, the Hapsburg attempts at expansion beyond Cuba have continued as the Military Orders have won a series of skirmishes and battles with neighboring hostile tribes, and finally won their first important victory against an Aztec army in the mountains through the use of firepower. While rumors that the mysterious plague may be extending further and that it has reached the Aztec capital – with an increased death toll observed by the knights - efforts at finding allies remain relatively slow, and the campaign promises to be a long one on account of terrain and logistics.

The Wars on the East:
Vasily III strengthens position, Poland and Denmark face financial collapse, Pope rebukes King Sigismund


The Polish Ambitions

Deciding to both crush the invading Crimean hordes following their sack of Southern Lithuania and to bolster his own power within the region, King Sigismund of Poland decided to be bold in his efforts for the year of 1521, bringing both important successes and failures on account of his decision. Abandoning the cause of Vasily to bring his own men back into Polish territory, the Polish King had the Grand Master of the Teutonic Knights made good on a past promise, folding the Teutonic Order into the Kingdom of Poland as a Polish vassal. And despite the weak financial situation of the Kingdom Sigismund ordered no less than five field armies to enter the campaign against the Crimeans – including the Knights who remained loyal to Duke Albrecht -, a supreme effort in which Polish forces regained lost territory following a brief series of skirmishes.

Indeed, the Crimean Khan seemed to have deliberately offered little resistance as his men withdrew back into Crimean territory mostly unscathed, Polish forces meeting with serious trouble upon entering enemy territory.  Even if separate efforts by the Polish crown had raised additional revenue to support the invasion the deployment of the entire military was just too crippling for the royal treasury, rapidly burning through financial reserves until the invading force – which won its first serious battles against the Khan – was left with a problem to find resources. As the massive Polish-Lithuanian force began to suffer from desertions so did other problems appear for Sigismund as well, with the Livonian Order and a faction of the Teutonic Knights renouncing the Grand Master’s decision and declaring themselves free from Polish vassalage.

Equally distressing has been the reaction from Rome to the loss of what is supposed to be an Imperial-Papal vassal, an outraged Pope Martin and the College of Cardinals suspending plans to appoint one or two Polish cardinals and demanding an immediate explanation from the Polish Court.

The Moscow Civil War

Seemingly left without allies upon the departure of the Poles and the Teutonic Knights, it was a grim situation for Vasily III and one which appeared to be soon to resolve itself in favor of his brother. Alas, even though 1521 saw little to no fighting between pro-Vasily and pro-Boyar forces, two decisive factors appear to have dramatically altered the balance of power at the onset of 1522: on one side, Vasily’s gamble to appeal to Swedish rebels and exiles payed off – and was seemingly eased by Christian II’s decisions -, leading the exiled Lady Christina Gyllenstierna and thousands of her followers to join the Moscowite ranks to support the Grand Duke. On the other, the decision by the Crimean Khan as his forces withdrew from Lithuania to send several raiding parties and forces into Boyar territory. Already weakened by the Siege of Moscow, the Boyar forces met significant defeats and saw their new volunteer units damaged, leading to speculation that both Vasily and Yury may be evenly matched for the next campaign.

Trouble at Copenhagen

Seemingly at the top of his successes only a few months ago, Christian II had to experience a significantly challenging year as threats to his royal authority became fueled by a series of significant factors. While a decision to mix leniency and exile in Sweden temporarily stabilized Danish hold over the region – despite significant internal or passive resistance -, Christian’s critical financial difficulties following significant expenditures met with increased trouble as the redoubling of colonial efforts has failed to yield significant profits thus far, and the decision to levy taxes among burghers – while staving off financial collapse in Denmark itself – has delivering a harsh blow to the King’s popularity among the group he drew the strongest support from. That such news was complimented by the decisive English victory at London and the melting of the Danish mercenaries only made the situation more complex, and there has been speculation on the King needing a new triumph to turn the domestic situation around.

The Portuguese Crusade:
New allies join the Portuguese, friction at the Balkans, Surrey and Magellan expeditions reappear


The Portuguese Counteroffensive

Following a series of defeats in Yemen and in India, the Portuguese Empire set up its own series of efforts to strike back at the Ottoman Empire and seemingly regain the initiative, seeing the support of various potential allies outside of the squabbling European realms. Among efforts at courtship the most successful were the overtures to Emperor Krishnadevaraya of the Vijayanagara Empire, who was swayed into assaulting Goa and overrunning the forts and cites captured by the Ottomans on their previous India offensive – this while the Ottoman navy continued to wreak havoc and several Indian princes were persuaded to turn their trade towards Istanbul -; and young Emperor Dawit II (and fellow Christian) was likewise persuaded on attempting a daring invasion of Ottoman Egypt upon reception of significant logistical support. Leading a large expedition alongside his Funj vassals, the Emperor was able to overrun much of southern Egypt partly thanks to being supplied with western firearms, threatening Cairo and the Ottoman Viceroy by the end of the year and throwing the recent Ottoman conquest into chaos.

Naval Struggles

Despite the relative success of the opening stages of the Egypt campaign, attempts by the Portuguese to retain superiority at sea met with failure even with the deployment of naval reinforcements from Brazil, the Ottoman navy taking advantage of superior numbers to inflict a moderate defeat on the Portuguese Navy at the Second Battle of the Gulf of Aden and resume its constant raids on the remnants of Portuguese trade, thus temporarily closing off access to Malacca. Having prepared for a possible Ottoman raid into the newly discovered Spice Islands, Sequeira’s naval squadron met with a stunning discovery: European ships had been seen far up North, on a seemingly new archipelago of undiscovered islands.

A scouting ship sent by Sequeira soon returned in a poor state, having been on the receiving end of offensive fire. As the Portuguese captain explained to his bewildered admiral, the so-called “St. Lazarus’s lands” had been claimed in the name of King Charles I by Admiral Magellan. Reports from merchants and travelers in Southern China soon confirmed Magellan had not been the only one to claim some degree of victory: the Earl of Surrey had landed on a large island and promptly named it “St. George”, claimed as a dominion of Henry VIII.

Conflict at the Balkans?

As the Portuguese and their allies continued the Crusade on their own a potential new front may be close to being started following a stunning series of developments in the Balkans. With continued talks and negotiations with the Hungarian nobility on the defense of the realm remaining at a stalemate as the Crown sought alternate measures, a series of arrests have taken place across the border by Ottoman officials, who in the attempt to capture potential rebels or sources of trouble have captured several would-be Hungarian agents, which are claimed to have been setting up efforts to attempt to undermine Ottoman rule. On the other hand, credible reports of substantial military preparations from the Ottoman side have also reached Buda, leading to mutual accusations by ambassadors of one side attempting to strike first against the other.

The World at the End of 1521

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