Wednesday, December 22, 2010

New turn, and... Over 10,000 visitors!?


The map above represents the campaign situation at the start of turn 6, which is about to begin and will be running from 21st to 27th August 1713. At this point, both playing sides are supposed to write their orders and afterwards it will be rolled a die to know who has won initiative and moves first. A few precisions should be made before starting, however:

First of all, the armies engaged in a battle on the previous turn must spend this complete turn resting and recomposing ranks. This affects the Spanish Army Group North as well as their opponent, Marquis de Poal’s column, who engaged to each other at the Battle of Ponts. On one side, Franco-Spanish troops have to remain in place for the whole turn to recompose ranks, while the Catalan force must move to the closest friendly town –which is Cardona. Unlike their opponents, the Catalans won’t be in the need to stay in place for a whole turn, because they had suffered no casualties or disbanded units -but the retreat towards Cardona is still compulsory. A further column needing a whole resting turn is that one lead by the Military Deputy, defeated days ago at Tivissa Battle and still fleeing for a friendly town. Might it be Vilafranca, if they managed to persuade local authorities to open gates to them...

Once the military situation has been briefly reviewed, let’s also deal a little bit on the current diplomatic environment. As lately perceived through the lack of activity on the northern front, there is some kind of non-declared truce between the Principality and France –this implicitly meaning a French stand-by while negotiations at Rastatt are being effectively unblocked, thanks to the proposal of Marquis de Vilana. Nevertheless, it should be noticed that such situation is far from being stable, largely depending on factors beyond the sole will of Catalans. Therefore, it would be wise having in mind that military actions could be resumed at the most unexpected moment, unless a definitive peace is agreed before.

Last but not least, allow me a few words on random events. We had considered esecially relevant two of these events (death of Queen Anne and French involvement in the campaign), and therefore had them scheduled in our campaign, so that at the end of each turn both must be checked according to a variable probability. However, we're still missing the possibility of actually unexpected events potentially influencing the course of war, while actual inter-actions with other EvE Imagi-Nations have been fewer than expected -albeit those actually happened are extremely valuable. Therefore, we're still experiencing some unsatisfaction degree at this point: how to 'remotely move' the Hispannic diplomacy, their war effort or even relevant events happened in Spain, for example? -either an unexpected death or a cunning alliance, a missing Americas convoy, a setback in the colonies...?

I'm afraid that our only chance to give a life of its own to this campaign facet is getting back to the Mythic GM charts; so that at the end of each turn we would roll a die for every potentially relevant Nation, and try to guess from results what kind of event has happened there subsceptible of influencing war -it sounds to me as trying to read a Tarot, but I can hardly imagine any solution else.

There was something to talk about individual characters too, but let's better leave it for another day, don't you believe?

Oh yes, about the title of this post: it has caught me by surprise, I didn't expect such a regular attendance to this humble weblog. My most sincere gratitude to all those visiting The Defiant Principality from time to time, and a request to all of you: please don't hesitate to leave your comments, opinions or suggestions -for, as you've just read, we not only welcome them, but do actually need them!

9 comments:

abdul666 said...

Regarding the Hispanic affairs and diplomatic attempts..
For the later, the new Bourbon King cannot expect *active* support against the defiant Galatans -*who* in these times felt sympathy enough for both Hispania and the Bourbons to send support? Certainly neither Lusitania nor the United Provinces! The only hope could be a change of attitude in Versailles, but the tension is already perceptible between the Orleans faction and -by reaction to their allegedly 'licentious' inclinations- the Catholic fundamentalists. But nobody forgot that the previous alliances between French Catholic Fundamentalists and Hispania always led to a bloody civil in France, and not so long ago the Prince de Condé himself to betray his King (and been military crushed). Such precedents are well remembered and rather deterring. Louis XIV is still alive and in power, and had nor forgotten the Fronde.


In Hispania itself, what about the 'peaceful' faction supporting the offer of a Principality in Austian Low Countries (French speaking Wallonie?) to influencial Marie Anne de La Trémoille, Princesse des Ursins? (I'm sure Versailles would support it, btw: a one direct Austrian 'threat' / common border removed).
And what about any echo of following the satisfying precedent of Andorra?
As for random 'economical' events i Hispania, yes, a gold convoy could partly sink under a storm, crops can be specially bad (or good), South Galicia can feel Lusitanophile (I ear that on linguistic bases it would not be a silly idea)....

abdul666 said...

Possible 'randoms events' in Hispania...

- The Great Lisbon Earthquake (1755) occurs now, suggesting to the Hispanic King to seize this opportunity to 'take revenge' of the Tratado de Methuen and even more of João V 's active participation to the WSS and the taking of Madrid -Lusitania was not yet officially at peace with Hispania until 1715- so Felipe de Borbón could be tempted to launch now the (1762) invasion while the 'Peace Party' is still in power in Great-Britain.

- The Great Plague of Marseille (1720) strikes earlier and elsewhere: the merchant ship, Le Grand-Saint-Antoine (probably contaminated while porting in Cyprus) is refused entry to *any* European port and out of desperation goes to undersell her cargo on the Barbary Coast. Given the importance of French ships in European trade with the Levant, they (generally) enjoyed a degree of protection from the Dey (for what it was worth), and anyway low-priced goods are more interesting than those captured 'not so for free' after an exchange of broadsides and a bloody boarding. From Oran, smugglers carry the plague to Andalucia...

Salvador said...

In fact the offer you are talking of in your first post is historical, and was into consideration. How much? I don't know to which degree but it was considered.
BTW la Duc d'Orleans was when in Spain the superior to Msr. Villarroel, CiC of the Catalan Army, and was later to be the regent after Louis the XIVth's death. And he was in no good terms with the "spanish" bourbon, who expelled him if IRC.
So It's not outrageous to think that a catalan offer might find grateful ears in France, moreso when the French king was in his last times, being it known to everybody. An even friendly buffer state south of the Pyrenees which could act as a beachhead and constant thorn would surely be no inconvenience to the french. And if by actively acting as warrant to the catalan freedom thios state could be grasped from Austrian or British hands (I mean influence), more the boon... Think for a while that France was to enter war against Spain just five years later, and this situation to be was surely thought about and even anticipated by French diplomats...

Salvador said...

Still more: by intervening in peacemaking and keeping catalan independence, France wouldn't lose anything, and would have an assurance for spanish "loyalty" by taking out a good tenth of its population and one of its (if not directly its one) more dynamic economies...
Eliminating also the claims to the catalan subjects made by the Austrian emperor 'til his own death...
And eliminating too the possible claim by a spanish monarch to the return of the transpyrenean Catalonia (Roussillon, Conflent, Vallespir, the Capcir and Alta Cerdanya), which was ceded by a Habsburg to a Bourbon...

abdul666 said...

As for the offer by the Empire to Marie Anne de La Trémoille, Princesse des Ursins (Camarera mayor and highly influential in the Spanish Court), yet French by birth and an agent of Louis XIV, of a Principality in the Austrian Netherlands in exchange of her support for peace south of the Pyrenees, would be perceived in France as a Godsend. France was living with fear of the Hapsburgs since it was practically surrounded by lands belonging to hostile Charles V: an independent French-speaking Wallony under a French Princess would constitute a buffer state (and a possible acquisition, with time, thanks to a cunning political marriage).

Soldadets said...

Sirs,

There's a lot of key infos in your latest messages, that might highly influence our initial layout.

For example, I was (erroneously, as it seems) that Portugal had abandoned war alongside with England and the Netherlands. It's shocking to me being explained that peace with Spain was not signed by them until 1715!

...so, at the time of our Catalonian campaign, is Portugal still an active ally?

The 1713 Spain was so exhaust to be plainly uncapable of holding two simultaneous fronts -even in the case of a devastating earthquake in Lisbon by that time-, as demonstrated by the fact they historically showed unable to deal by themselves with a single (minor) front, so that by mid-1714 they needed a supplementary 'helping hand' under form of 68 French battalions (as attested by the Marquis de Quincy) to subjugate a lonely Catalonia.

However, the theoretical state of war still existing between Portugal and Spain is a wide open gate for a good deal of plots and concerted plans between Lisbon and Barcelona!

It is easy to imagine, therefore, how strategically prioritary is for Catalans to achieve a separate peace with France -unless a change of mind of Britain was achieved, to be sincere.

There's a hidden reef in an eventual French-Catalan negotiation, an extremely difficult to solve one in my opinion, which I've made allusion to a couple of times before. I'm not explicitly talking about it just now -better leaving it for a formal negotiations table. Let's simply attest to understand French security motivations, and bringing them face to face with Catalans' own fears and aprehension, which come from an almost uninterrupted state of war with their northern neighbour since the Croisade des Albigeois.

This is why I'm plainly anxious to see the results of sitting French and Catalan diplomats at the very same negotiations table. I'd love to see Lady Elisenda being invited to Versailles the sooner the better after her stay in Vienna -but I have no means to accelerate the process...

I understand to be facing a key fact in the actual History of my Nation, and this makes me really thrilling at the results of it all.

Salvador said...

Moreover, as it's obvious that the Portuguese are firmly allied to the British, who are in almost continuous belligerance with France since the XIVth century, France could in turn consider the practicality of having such a grateful ally at the other side of the Iberian Peninsula, having in consideration that Philip had not demonstrated a good will towards the advise given by Louis XIV. Then there's the precedent of franco catalan negotiation in the Separation War in 1640 which ended in Louis XIII being Count of Barcelona and so ruler of the Principality. This, coupled with a friendly state (even if it's a little one) in spanish netherlands, has to be considered...

NOMADIC OLD SCHOOL GAMER. said...

While looking through the histories of the Schwabian Leauge I find that during the War of Austrian Successiion a group of volunteers gained experience in warfare against the French in Catalonia. They numbered 2500 men composing 3x600 Inf BN with 3lb batallion guns and 2x250 horse. I am looking forward to researching their battle reports.

Soldadets said...

NomadicOSG: might I be acknowledged on such a unit? ...would they have already been withdrawn back to Germany by July 1713, or might they stay still in my Galatea's whereabouts? (let's say, Majorca, Sardinia or Naples). I guess whether their WSS-times curriculum is yet to be completed... ;)