246BC - Diplomatic / Faction Progression Update
We are 25 full years into the campaign (100 turns) so this seems like a good spot to see what is happening in the world.
My approach to diplomacy is twofold:
1. Diplomacy is totally broken in RTW/EB so we will not engage in any. It is far too easy to exploit and nonsensical for the human player.
2. We will not declare war on another faction. But if they declare war on us, it is a fight til the death.
[NB: although we violated the treaty with Carthage, they declared war on us rather than vice versa. So that doesn't count :p]
Allies: Arverni and Aedui
The Casse are doing ok, in line with what you might expect from the AI at this point in the game. They have 2 or 3 good size stacks in play and should be able to capture the remaining rebel settlements without too much trouble.
Allies: Carthage, Casse and Arverni (!) - the 3 Celtic factions are having an allied love-in.
The Aedui are currently the stronger of the two Gallic factions, controlling most of northern and central Gaul. They took Viennos from the Arverni fairly early on which was a major blow for me - if the Arverni had held on to Viennos, I would not currently have a border with the Aedui and as a result the Gallic factions would still be fighting each other. But since I have a border with both, they made peace, became allies, and are now throwing everything at me.
Allies: Aedui and Casse
The Arverni territory is split in two following their loss of Viennos to the Aedui. They are therefore determined to take Mediolanum to reunite their lands. They have tried and failed to take Emporion many times. Since they have 3 settlements with borders next to me, they are the most persistent in sending troops against me.
I am not quite sure what the Lusotannans are doing. They have a solid base of 5 cities but do not seem to be attacking any other settlements. It seems like they have no stacks in the above screenshot, but it is likely they are all hiding in forests. The Ptolemaioi for one would be quite happy if the Lusotannans got off their butts and put some pressure on Carthage in Spain.
The Sweboz have been content so far in carving out rebel territory in central Europe rather than mixing with other factions (NB: I have turned the Central European Defence mega rebel stacks off in this campaign, in case you were wondering how the AIs had captured settlements like Eburonum). How long this persists remains to be seen. I for one am praying the Sweboz do not capture Veldideno any time soon (they have tried and failed a couple of times already).
The Getai are doing ok in carving out rebel territory in eastern Europe. Surprisingly they not warring with any other faction. In other campaigns I have seen them embroiled in many early wars, whether against Makedonia, Sweboz, Sauromatae or even Rome. Slightly worryingly I do have a border with the Getai (they have Iuvavoaeta) - so war is probably not light years away. My best hope is they fight with the Sweboz instead of coming at me; otherwise Cisalpine Gaul will get even messier.
Allies: Seleucids, Pontos and Sauromatae
War: Koinon Hellenon and Epeiros
The Makedonians are in a handicap match against the other two western Greek factions. They have lost Demetrias and Korinthos to KH but taken Athenai to compensate. They have a large stack attacking Pergamon but the Epeirotes are becoming more persistent in besieging Pella, which is cut off from the rest of the Makedonian settlements. If they can hold on to Pella and take Pergamon, the Makedonians could yet come out on top - but as it is, there is quite a pleasing stalemate in Greece.
Allies: Baktria, Ptolemaioi and Epeiros
War: Makedonia and Sauromatae
The KH have had an interesting time so far. They have been at war with Pontos after Sinope flipped (Pontos has now recaptured and peace has been made). They have been at war with Epeiros after Pyrrhus attacked Thermon (they made peace after Epeiros took the city and are now allied). They have recently become embroiled in war with the Sauromatae after Chersonesos flipped. They have captured Demetrias and Korinthos from Makedonia but somehow lost Athenai. They almost lost Demetrias back to Makedonia and in turn almost captured Pella. They made several unsuccessful attempts to take Thermon before the Epeirotes succeeded. And amid all else, that starting stack in Krete simply will not leave the island, nor attack Kydonia .
Allies: Koinon Hellenon
War: Rome and Makedonia
After being kicked out of Italy the Epeirotes have consolidated their holdings in western Greece, adding Thermon and Dalminion to their starting settlements. Their main focus at present is on Pella, and it seems only a matter of time before they take it. They have made a couple of half-hearted attempts to take Segestica, which would reignite the war vs Rome.
Allies: Seleucids, Saba, Aedui and Lusotannans
War: Rome and Ptolemaioi
Carthage is fast becoming a monster, despite losing its Mediterranean islands to Rome. The Carthaginians have united Africa and are now pushing east. They first went to war with the Seleucids over Kyrene (later making peace and signing an alliance). Now they are tearing into the Ptolemaioi, who seem powerless to resist, surrounded as they are by the Seleucids, Saba and Carthage. Carthage has several stacks on the march and it is only a matter of time before they reach the Nile. The Ptolemaioi's only hope is if another faction can somehow distract Carthage and alleviate the pressure...
Allies: Seleucids and Carthage
The Saba have benefited from the southern Ptolemaioi settlements rebelling to them. They have established a firm grip on Axum. Meroe has twice flipped from the Ptolemaioi to the Saba, but each time the Saba failed to hold on to it, letting it rebel again. It is unlikely they have sufficient troops in the area to benefit from the imminent Ptolemaioi collapse.
Allies: Hayasdan, Pahlava and Koinon Hellenon
War: Seleucids, Saba and Carthage
The Ptolemaioi are close to folding. They lost their Asia Minor settlements very quickly to the Seleucids, which meant the Seleucids could focus their forces in the east and south without worrying about a Ptolemaioi counterattack in the west. They took upper Egypt only to see the settlements flip to the Saba. And now with Carthaginian armies swarming through the desert, it seems only a matter of time before the Nile Delta is lost, and all hope with it.
The Middle East
Allies: Hayasdan, Pahlava and Makedonia
Pontos is doing rather well. They have benefited from not becoming embroiled against the Seleucids or Ptolemaioi, and are instead expanding west. After some initial trouble capturing and holding Sinope, Pontos' territory now extends into Thrace, as far as Macedonia. What will happen next might be interesting - they are running out of rebel settlements to target, so they may have to war against another faction soon.
Allies: Baktria, Pontos, Pahlava, Getai and Ptolemaioi
It seems no matter what you do, you can't keep Hayasdan out of the steppes . Instead of going south against the Seleucids, or west aginst Pontos, Hayasdan is embroiled in its usual pointless steppe conflict against the Sauromatae.
Allies: Makedonia, Saba, Carthage and Sauromatae
War: Pahlava and Ptolemaioi
Thanks to the Ptolemaioi's troubles, the Seleucids have managed to avoid their customary fate of being torn apart from all sides. Instead, they managed to captured the Ptolemaioi Asia Minor settlements easily and could then focus on giving the Pahlava a kicking in the east. None of Baktria, Pontos or Hayasdan has declared war against the Seleucids either, giving them a free hand to consolidate. The Selucids have been trying (and failing) to capture Bostra and Sidon for some time.
The Steppes & Far East
Allies: Seleucids, Makedonia and Saka Rauka
War: Hayasdan, Pahlava and Koinon Hellenon
The Sauromatae territory is vast in size but poor in wealth. The barbarians of the steppe have been rudely interrupted in their customary fight against the Hayasdan by rebellions. First a Pahalva steppe settlement rebelled to them, putting them at war with one of their main allies. And recently Chersonesos flipped away from them to the Koinon Hellenon, putting them at war with the Greeks.
Allies: Baktria, Hayasdan, Pontos and Ptolemaioi
War: Seleucids, Saka Rauka and Sauromatae
After some initial success, where the Pahlava managed to take some Seleucid settlements as well as expand into the steppe, it has all come crashing down for the nomads. They have just 3 settlements left, each split off from the other. They have lost their starting settlements to the Saka Rauka and Seleucids and it seems only a matter of time before the enemies they are surrounded by take their remaining territory.
War: Baktria and Pahlava
The Saka Rauka are not doing particularly well, although the recent capture of Khiva from the Pahlava may help to change their fortunes. In their main war against Baktria, the eastern Greeks have the clear upper hand, taking Gava Haomavarga and Sulek from the Saka Rauka. It remains to be seen whether the nomads can strike back.
Allies: Hayasdan, Pahlava and Koinon Hellenon
War: Saka Rauka
The Baktrians are doing quite well. They have the upper hand in their battle against the Saka Rauka and they have recently beaten the Seleucids and Pahlava to capture Antiocheia-Margiane, after it rebelled from the Seleucids. They have not yet expanded into India - if they can do that while holding on in the north, the Baktrians could become a major force.