Crusader Kings II Spirit-all

The new King was without children, and his wife had died ten years ago. He instead took three of his prisoners as concubines, all relatives of the rebels who rose against Mingaila. One of them gave him a son, Rimvydas.

Shortly after Mingaila's death, the north of Lithuania was raided by forces from Finland.

King Gedigaudas immediately raised his levies, and sent them to defend his realm. Without informing his councilors, he rode northward with his army. His forces were defeated despite a slight numerical advantage, and the King himself was captured. He died shortly thereafter in a prison in Finland.

His successor was Antanas, High Chief of Curonia and oldest surviving son of King Mingaila. He is not particularly talented, and is known for being duplicitous.

769-777: High Chief Cirulis
777-814: King Rimgaila 'the Lion'
814-818: King Lutuveras 'the Lionheart'
818-832: King Skirgaila
832-833: King Tarvydas 'the Ill-Ruler'
833-866: King Minigaila 'the Wicked'
866-870: King Gedigaudas

As of 895, Astanas had been successful in keeping his realm intact, dealing with a few internal squabbles and a few changes amongst his vassals.

Around this time, my vassal the new High Chief of Latgale declared a subjugation war against Sweden. I didn't pay much attention to this, as Sweden would not be able to actually take any of his (and my) territory.

What I didn't count upon was that my vassal would actually win the war against Sweden. He therefore became the King of Sweden in 896, and took his High Chiefdom (with 5 counties) from Lithuania and made it a part of Sweden.

IMAGE(https://steamuserimages-a.akamaihd.net/ugc/800989528963592404/C29FC129872A274B22429B34A265B0C803588DD3/)

Antanas now has a goal to restore his kingdom's integrity. He'll need to perform some diplomacy first, so that he can face down Sweden. Until recently he had an ally, as the powerful High Chief of Chernigov was married to his sister and Antanas explanded the non-aggression pact into an alliance. Unfortunately, that fell apart as the High Chief arranged for the murder of his wife.

I jumped back into Crusader Kings 2 this week. I've been realizing how much of a newb I am at this, even though I'm closing in on 200 hours in Steam.

Has anyone tried out a Shattered World start yet, where everyone is a count? I gave it a shot, and it's quite different. Getting a second county quickly seems to be key. I managed to get off to a great start but after a few hours I realized that I had some settings in the game I didn't like, and that I really wanted to play something more historical. So I decided to go back to core CK2: Ireland. I've never played Ireland far enough to control all of the British Isles and figured that might be a good goal.

For as many times as I've played CK2, I don't think I've ever gotten more than 100 years in a game before wandering off. This time I hope to make it further!

Go, go, Godzilla(Blitz)!

quasiChaos wrote:

Go, go, Godzilla(Blitz)! :sing:

Thanks! I might post some updates along the way.

Brittania or bust!

King Donn Cothaid of Connachta (769-782)

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/XGm5oN7.jpg)
King Donn Cothaid of Connachta, at his coronation in 769

In the year 769, the illiterate yet kindly King Donn Cothaid of the Petty Kingdom of Connachta took the throne as a 48-year-old man with a remarkable lack of skill. His "petty kingdom," if you could even call it that, consisted of two tiny counties on the western coast of what is now modern Ireland. But Cothaid's dreams were bigger than his meager holdings, and his confidence vastly outstripped his abilities. He dreamed of ruling the entirety of Brittania, and although he had little belief that he could accomplish this dream during his reign, he certainly could start his family on the road to such greatness.

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/ghY3Dug.jpg)
The Petty Kingdom of Connachta in 769.

Unfortunately, Cothaid's reign accomplished next to nothing on this road to greatness. He made the right moves, sending his chancellor, a man of incredible skill, to try to fabricate a claim against a neighboring county to the north. He borrowed a large sum of funds from Jewish moneylenders, to have ready to fund a mercenary army that could bolster his meager forces and lead them to victory. And then he waited, patiently, for his chancellor to trigger the legal lever to launch their attack. Nine years later he was still waiting.

Not the brightest bulb on the tree, poor Cothaid didn't even realize that he was ruling a tribal nation, which gave him the means to raise looters and go raiding. Sitting in his little hillfort in his home county of Muaidhe, Cothaid was convinced that his kingdom was feudal. So instead of filling his coffers with gold from raids, he sat around, biding his time, waiting for good things to happen.

By the time Cothaid's chancellor successfully fabricated the long sought claim, Cothaid was sick and on his death bed. His last action in life might have been his single action of note, as shortly after he declared war on the county to his north, Cothaid slipped into a coma and died at age 61. In 13 years, his kingdom had gone nowhere.

As the Petty Kingdom of Connachta launched itself into war, Cothaid's sole surviving son, 40-year-old Cathmug, stepped to the throne.

County Total: 2

I have dipped back in, going for a shattered world start in 780 or whatever in Spain. It feels very different to the 1066 start since the Church has no authority at all so it's heresy city. I had firmly installed the concept that you don't mess with the pope but I have no idea how to deal with it this other than by joining whichever heresy appears - some very scary stacks appear every so often if I try to stay Catholic when the Cathar heresy keeps popping up everywhere.

I also really like being able to choose gender equality as a starting option - other than dynasties going down the male line I think it makes it more interesting without having to panic about having a male heir all the time.

Ditto Gavelkind, which I can get rid of my forcing primogeniture as a shattered world option. I always found that a painful thing I tried to get rid of ASAP, but then I hate it when people take away my stuff.

DudleySmith wrote:

I have dipped back in, going for a shattered world start in 780 or whatever in Spain. It feels very different to the 1066 start since the Church has no authority at all so it's heresy city. I had firmly installed the concept that you don't mess with the pope but I have no idea how to deal with it this other than by joining whichever heresy appears - some very scary stacks appear every so often if I try to stay Catholic when the Cathar heresy keeps popping up everywhere.

I also really like being able to choose gender equality as a starting option - other than dynasties going down the male line I think it makes it more interesting without having to panic about having a male heir all the time.

Ditto Gavelkind, which I can get rid of my forcing primogeniture as a shattered world option. I always found that a painful thing I tried to get rid of ASAP, but then I hate it when people take away my stuff.

Yes, I like the options available in both the shattered world and random world starts. You can customize your game to an amazing degree. I have a sense it’ll probably take me a few starts before I get everything the way I’d like it; I think some of the seemingly unimportant choices might actually impact the game in significant ways.

In the shattered world game that I abandoned, for example, I selected the option “each county has only one holding slot” and “no dukes, all counts.” Those choices seem to have a lot of consequences, as there weren’t any churches in my game, every county was too similar, and no one had enough power to grab another county. After 25 years of play, the whole game map was pretty much still shattered. I was able to just pick off county after county.

I have *finally* found a patient soul who is taking me through the intricacies of CK2 via Discord. He seems to relish unpacking the design and sub-sub-menus for me, but a lot of other players would be bored, so I'm very lucky.

Anyone have any current mods they'd recommend? I got rid of my old ones because Discord + CK2 kept shutting down my Mac, and I'd like to start over with the mods.

Natus wrote:

I have *finally* found a patient soul who is taking me through the intricacies of CK2 via Discord. He seems to relish unpacking the design and sub-sub-menus for me, but a lot of other players would be bored, so I'm very lucky.

Anyone have any current mods they'd recommend? I got rid of my old ones because Discord + CK2 kept shutting down my Mac, and I'd like to start over with the mods.

Good luck! Feel free to post questions here too. I know just enough to lead you terribly astray.

I confess I haven't considered mods yet. I'm hoping to pick up some of the achievements, and I have it in my head that most mods disable achievements, right?

I'll admit that I've never even looked into mods for Paradox games. Is that a thing? I guess I read at some point about a Game of Thrones mod for CK2, but who knows if that's still going. The game is more than 7 years old at this point.

GoT mod is still a thing. I think there's also a Elder Scrolls mod for CK2 as well.

I use UI and font mods. Despite Pdox doing some work over the years, it is still not a great out of the box widescreen experience. Also, I want the game to look pretty, so fog of war mods, border mods, map name font mods, shield mods, and face mods get used.

The map and font mods seem most popular in my experience. Just tweaks the visual experience.

Humm. Interesting. Do the map and font mods break achievements?

Yes. Unless you add another mod to unbreak them.

tanstaafl wrote:

Yes. Unless you add another mod to unbreak them.

Thanks!

I might give some UI mods a look-see then.

Funny, I remember saying that exact thing while playing Skyrim. 150 mods later, I was back at the game.

King Cathmug of Connachta (782-790)

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/J55Zgt7.jpg)
King Cathmug, after returning from conquering Breifne in 783

Upon his father's untimely death, 40-year-old King Cathmug arose to the throne of Connachta. In every way imaginable, he was more gifted than his father. This isn't saying much, and in no ways means that Cathmug was a man of great influence. Matter of fact, he was decidedly below average at most things. He had some skill with finances and was a decent scholar, but that's about it. A lot of his lack of accomplishment might stem from the fact that he spent his first 20 years of adulthood doing pretty much nothing else except hanging about and procreating with his wife. They had five kids. Problematically, three of them were sons.

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/1sjfbE1.jpg)
The Kingdom of Connachta in 783

But sparked by unexpected responsibility, Cathmug wore the crown with an energy that few suspected he had. He took command of his forces laying siege to their enemies, and within a year had captured the castle and ended the war. Cathmug confidently built off that success to launch raids across the waters, in what is now modern day Wales. The funds from these raids allowed Connachta to start expanding their main castle. He married off a daughter to the King of Mercia, which allowed Connachta to forge an alliance with the powerful nation sitting handily just a short boat ride away. And it didn't take long before Cathmug leveraged that alliance to successfully navigate a surprisingly difficult pair of wars that resulted in Connachta adding a fourth county to their realm.

Cathmug's undoing, however, came from a distinct lack of willingness to recognize his weaknesses. He stubbornly led his forces in battle despite being a below average swordsman. Luck shined on him in his early years as king, but ultimately Fate came calling. Pushing an advantage in a battle to add a fifth county to the realm, Cathmug lost an ill-advised duel against a superior combatant and died fighting in 790. He had ruled for only eight years, but had managed to double the realm and jump start his family's bid for power.

Unfortunately, Cathmug's wild libido created an immediate problem on his death. He left his kingdom to be split among five living sons. His oldest son Reggie inherited the Petty Kingdom and one county, but the other two counties went to other sons, to serve as vassals to the eldest. And two sons got nothing at all. The kingdom was still together, but cracks in the foundation were easy to spot. And with that, 19-year-old Reggie took up leadership of the realm.

County Total: 4

King Reggie “The Traitor” of Connachta, Part I (790-802)

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/dCMMqTn.jpg)
King Reggie, still friendless after seven years of ruling

19-year-old King Reggie, the oldest of five brothers and two sisters, took the throne after his father’s death in battle. Reggie had one strength, and one strength only: he was good with a sword. In particular, Reggie was impossible to defeat. His defensive mastery of weapons was unparalleled, and this defensive toughness would be a hallmark of the forces he led into battle.

But God works in funny ways, as it was clear from the start that Reggie was good at nothing but fighting. He was anti-social, stubborn, and belligerent. It wasn’t like he didn’t work at these things, though. Upon taking the throne, Reggie looked around and saw how much his brothers envied him, how much his vassals despised him, and realized that he probably should make some friends. “I will have a friend,” proclaimed Reggie to his wife (who also disliked him).

Twelve years later Reggie was still trying to make that first friend. It partly wasn’t his fault, as his brothers hated him for being the oldest. The clergy hated him because his nation still had a massive debt to the Jewish moneylenders. A lot of other people hated him because he was ambitious. Unknown enemies spread vicious rumors about him, and that piled on the hatred. But a good part of it really was Reggie’s fault, due to one cowardly decision in battle early in his reign. Pinned and injured in a duel gone sour, Reggie sacrificed a fellow commander in battle to save his own life. With this, Reggie got dubbed “The Traitor” and was soundly denounced by all.

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/TBacS7a.jpg)
The Kingdom of Connachta in 802

In the first twelve years of his reign, however, Reggie used the hatred against him to fuel his drive for success. And successful he was. Alternating raids with wars, Reggie conquered three more Irish counties, including the shining prize of Ireland: the county of Dubhlinn. His battlefield success was remarkable in particular for how few casualties his troops would take. A typical battle would see a hundred or more enemy dead, and less than ten of Reggie’s men down. He rolled to victory in raids and battles, and no one could beat him.

On the political front, the simmering dislike for King Reggie led to several plots, which he methodically snuffed out one after another. His brother Dragon was the leader of one such assination plot, and Reggie tossed him in the oubliette for his efforts.

As a result of this frenzied war and growth, Connachta became the strongest petty kingdom in Ireland, and it was in 802 that Reggie made three momentous decisions.

First, inspired by the geographic potential of the eastern seaboard of Ireland, he moved the capital from the west of Ireland to Dubhlinn, the Irish county with the greatest potential for growth. It would mean starting from scratch again with his castle, and helping the local townsfolk learn technologies that the western capital had learned decades earlier. But Reggie knew that in the end it would be worth it, and that Dubhlinn could grow far beyond any other Irish county.

Second, Reggie had become so disenchanted with human beings that he decided to try giving himself to God. He joined the Domincan Order as an acolyte, and started spending days in prayer and devotion.

Last but not least, Reggie gave up trying to make a friend and shifted his life ambition to becoming the King of Ireland.

Reggie was now just past 30 years old, and the next stage in his reign was set to unfold.

County Total: 7

Nice!

King Reggie “The Traitor” of Connachta, Part II (802-818)

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/CxrXdL0.jpg)
King Reggie at age 46, shortly before his son murdered him

Shortly after declaring his intent to unite Ireland as one kingdom, diplomatic futility stalled out the momentum King Reggie had gained. Once again Connachta struggled to fabricate claims on neighboring counties. But Reggie used this span of years to raid and infuse the new capital Dubhlinn with massive investment. The country prospered and Dubhlinn grew. Pillaging all around him, Reggie also brought in enough gold to easily pay off the Jewish moneylenders.

And at first Reggie’s newfound devotion to the Dominican Order quelled his belligerence. He meditated and sought Jesus with a passion equal to his desire for power. With the kingdom prospering, Reggie’s popularity started to nudge up. A happier and brighter Connachta was not out of the question.

But on a frosty winter evening, Reggie’s ardent passion twisted badly as he prayed to Jesus above. Instead of Jesus, the devil came calling and possessed Reggie’s soul. In that instant, Reggie’s innate malevolence spiraled out of control. From that point on, Reggie’s reign would be a frightening exhibition of evil masked by a thin veil of Christian devotion. Reggie would extol the virtues of Saint Augustine during the day, and then sneak into the dungeon to torture prisoners at night. (He accidentally killed one of his imprisoned brothers in one of these episodes.) He showed no mercy to his enemies. He executed anyone bold enough to start plotting against him and anyone foolish enough to duel him. As things went from bad to worse, plots against Reggie became a monthly occurrence, and the deaths mounted. Reggie even executed his eldest son’s wife for plotting against him.

IMAGE(https://i.imgur.com/51j4R7D.jpg)
The Petty Kingdom of Connachta in 818, as Arnold ascends to the throne.

And then things got really crazy. Reggie got cancer, was given months to live, opted to have his leg amputated as extreme treatment, and survived the cancer. The spirit of Jesus anointed him, which was downright nuts, but that was quickly followed by Reggie spending full moon nights romping through the castle on his one good leg, convinced his was a werewolf and eating live dogs.

All the executions and death and devil possession and werewolfing were sending Reggie’s detractors into a frenzy, even as the diplomatic logjam finally broke. As the homefront collapsed in the insanity of his rule, Reggie was able to instigate wars and capture two more Irish counties.

The capture of the counties meant that Reggie only needed one more county to create the Kingdom of Ireland. If he could just hold his internal enemies at bay for a couple more years, he could unite Ireland, avoid some nasty inheritance issues due to having three sons, and solidify personal control of the best duchy in Ireland.

But the mounting pressures on the homefront were too much. One evening as Reggie was leaning against a rail high up in his wooden castle, the rail “accidentally” snapped and Reggie plummeted to his death. Standing just a few feet away when it happened, Reggie’s eldest son Arnold was rumored to have whispered “Gotcha!” and smile as the king tumbled to his death. The Petty Kingdom of Connachta would long remember King Reggie’s 36-year tumultuous ride of evil prosperity, but Arnold wasted no time in claiming the crown. He was up next. Connachta was on the cusp on creating Ireland, if Arnold could seal the deal.

County Total: 9

Robear wrote:

Nice!

Thanks! It's been a super fun game so far. I'm not sure I've played a more bizarre character than Reggie. His life was just over the top crazy. I'm sure everyone who has played CK2 quite a bit has had some memorable characters, and Reggie is one of mine so far.

Godzilla Biltz, your chronicles are fantastic.

They've gotten me to boot up the game (after getting some interface mods and upping the UI scale slightly). I didn't think I'd play CK2 again.

I'll miss Reggie. Hopefully Arnold will keep his momentum going.

Roke wrote:

Godzilla Biltz, your chronicles are fantastic.

They've gotten me to boot up the game (after getting some interface mods and upping the UI scale slightly). I didn't think I'd play CK2 again.

Thanks! I’m glad you’re enjoying them.

What kind of a start are you playing?

Hrdina wrote:

I'll miss Reggie. Hopefully Arnold will keep his momentum going.

Me too. Things are set up nicely for Arnold, except for those two younger brothers and a slight, um... complication with his wife. Arnold looks pretty talented too. I hope to play more later today.

Are you playing now, Hrdina?

Godzilla Blitz wrote:
Roke wrote:

Godzilla Biltz, your chronicles are fantastic.

They've gotten me to boot up the game (after getting some interface mods and upping the UI scale slightly). I didn't think I'd play CK2 again.

Thanks! I’m glad you’re enjoying them.

What kind of a start are you playing?

Just a short game in Ireland to remember how to play and see if the interface will work for me. I think I'm going to try to do a King of Scotland game.

Godzilla Blitz wrote:

Are you playing now, Hrdina?

I have taken a bit of a hiatus lately, as I got back into Elite and have had a few minor crises at work.

I do plan to return to my Lithuania game sometime soon.

For now, I'll content myself to live vicariously through the Uí Fiachrach dynasty.