Results 1 to 3 of 3

Thread: Establishing poleis along the Indian Ocean trade as Ptolemies [2.35a R3]

  1. #1

    Default Establishing poleis along the Indian Ocean trade as Ptolemies [2.35a R3]

    Here's a fun idea for a campaign that has some historical basis: the Ptolemiac Dynasty realizes in this alternate timeline the full potential of the untapped (and untaxed!) Red Sea - Indian Ocean trade in 272BC. The untested leader Ptolemy Philadephos hatched a scheme to colonize key regions along the Red Sea, eastern Arabia, and finally India in the hopes that a friendly hellenistic population guarded by military colonists would faciliate trade and boost the prestige of the Ptolemaic Empire.

    Unlike my two other hare-brained campaigns, I won't dictate the reader into performing the exact steps necessary to achieve these campaign objectives, but rather give general advice. The fun lies in not just the campaign objective, but the player's unique strategy in achieving them!

    Anyways, controlling the Red Sea - Indian Ocean trade requires that you actually maintain your hold over coastal settlements supporting this trade. This is a monumental task - these settlements are hundreds if not thousands of miles away from the Ptolemaic capital of Alexandreia, have natives of vastly different cultures who do not appreciate these strange money-obsessed hellenes taxing their hard-earned wealth, and finally border multiple expansionist powers - the Nabataeans, Sabai, Seleucids, and Taksashilans. This is not to mention that you still have the Syrian Wars to finish, as well as facing invaders from every angle.

    As a result, besides your historical objectives of simply containing the Seleucids (and funding proxy wars against the permanently hostile Antigonids until Antigonus finally dies), there's also your little side hustle of colonizing the Red Sea - Indian Ocean region. You need plentiful colonists. You need high-quality governors. You need spare troops.

    In order to achieve these goals, here are a list of steps you can take. I won't tell you exactly what to do, but I will say this: recruit a unit of Lithiboloi in Alexandreia on turn 1. You know, just for funsies. Don't do anything stupid like blitzing unguarded settlements with them, okay? You promise? Good.

    Anyways, here's the objectives

    - Eliminate the Nabataeans completely. The maniacal 2.35a R3 campaign AI will gladly betray you just to snatch up a frontier province or two. You can't pour resources into sending Greeks where no Greek has ever gone before with a thorn in your backyard.

    - Win the Syrian Wars. Abandon Ptolemais-Akko, and the Seleucids will then not only secure Salamis as well, but also directly border Alexandreia. Don't do anything stupid though like using those Lithiboloi to snatch up Damascus and Antiochea.

    - Subjugate all of Hellas. The 7 mainland greek cities (Sparta, Korinthos, Athenai, Demetrias, Thermon, Ambrakia, and Pella) as well as the great island state of Rhodos either start as a level 3 poleis or can be upgraded into one within about 75 turns. Combined with the heavily hellenized provinces of Alexandreia, Thebes, Antiochea, and Salamis, controlling these will yield you an absolute exodus of colonists every 16 turns.

    - Purge all low-influence or Selfish/Uncharismatic or disloyal FMs. Influence is the key here. Selfish/Uncharismatic FMs will catch a slew of bad traits which tank influence, disloyal FMs will eventually acquire a Royal Spy ancillary which also sinks their influence, and FMs that simply have low influence anyways are useless.

    - Develop good governors. Alexandreia starts with a wondrous level 2 school, and is a prime candidate for your surviving FMs to not just learn how to govern, but also build valuable connections with ancillaries like Philosophers, Librarians, Garum Chefs, and even historical figures like that one dude who performs surgeries on fully awake victims (he grants you +15 battle surgery, so his crimes against humanity are excused).

    - Finally, conquer the Red Sea and Indian Ocean, build hellenistic military colonies ASAP, station governors in the most rebellious provinces, establish a minor poleis, upgrade the military colony, and finally upgrade to a normal poleis.

    What do you get when you've conquered, culturally imperialized, stabilized, and fortified those regions? Well besides "a feeling on accomplishment", you now have a VERY interesting geopolitical situation in the late game. You have a string of settlements in Arabia and India with huge recruitment potential. Post-thorakitai reforms your level 2 military colonies yield 1 thorakitai and 1 aspidotai hippeis, while your level 2 poleis will provide hoplites, thureophoroi, euzonoi, and thureopherontes hippeis. In India, things are even spicier. You can recruit Indohellenic medium infantry, hoplites, and cavalry everywhere in India, and in the Indian provinces close to Baktria, Baktrian Horse Archers.

    From these power bases, you can wage a final war against the Seleucids from literally all sides (save from the north). From Hellas you can D-Day Anatolia, from Syria you strike into Mesopotamia, from eastern Arabia you eat up into Persian heartlands, and from India you sweep into the upper satrapies. All along the ways you encounter vastly different cultures and factions, make friends, share joy and sorrow, learn something about yourself, and commit a few war crimes here and there. But that's just my experience both so far and planned. You can spice it up with your own personal twist!

  2. #2

    Default Re: Establishing poleis along the Indian Ocean trade as Ptolemies [2.35a R3]

    Ok, I messed up. Colonizing Ethiopia and the southern tip of Arabia does almost NOTHING on the recruitment side. You get no troops whatsoever from hellenistic colonies and you can only establish level 1 poleis there. Thankfully though the level 1 poleis still offers the same basic recruitment as everywhere else, and the hellenistic colony still offers conversion up to 49% if built up to level 2. The rationale, as explained by an EBII team member in another thread, is that a hellenistic colony would offer recruitment and a poleis can be further upgraded only in areas that Hellenes historically sought to colonize. This means you can fully colonize with level 3 hellenistic colonies and poleis in areas such as the former Achaemenid Empire, Italy, and Carthage. Meanwhile areas off the radar of contemporary Hellenes such as the southern tip of Arabia, Ethiopia, and possibly Germania could be colonized to some degree but offers little to no recruitment.

    The exception is India. While only a level 1 poleis could be established in India, you can upgrade a hellenistic colony all the way to level 3 or reformed and obtain excellent quantities of Indo-Hellenic and Baktrian troops. So establishing an isolated foothold in India is sustainable, while doing the same for the southern tip of Arabia would be a money and attention sink. If a rival faction controls the Arabian settlement across the Persian Gulf from Alexandreia Karmania, they WILL launch hare-brained expeditions from there to the easternmost settlement in the southern tip of Arabia. Assault after assault and your Arabian garrison will have to rely on reinforcement to come from all the way up to the Nile Delta. I've see AI Seleukids establish a foothold on southern Arabia before against AI Saba.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Establishing poleis along the Indian Ocean trade as Ptolemies [2.35a R3]

    Love these guides. Fun stuff! (I'm noticing a trend where they all involve blitzing Greece though )

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts