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Not the last Czar - Romanov's Forever!

Sun May 01, 2016 7:19 am

A group of Serbian nationalists hatched a plan to kill Archduke Francis Ferdinand, who was in favor of changing the Dual Monarchy of the Austro-Hungarian Empire to Trialism, or triple re-ogranization of the empire with Slavs having an equal place with the German and Hungarian peoples. The people of Serbia viewed this as a threat to all they coveted - a Greater Serbia and these Bosnian Serbs had to paint the Archduke as the most vile of villains. After the assassination took place, the world reacted like it wasn't a huge matter. All that changed when the Empire gave Serbia a demand, which included that they forgo their sovereignty and allow officials from the Empire to be involved in the capture and trial of these criminals. The world was aghast at this betrayal of international decorum and the world turned against the Austro-Hungarian Empire (except for their ally, the German Empire). Russia has seen itself as the protector of all Slavs and through a series of unfortunate events and failed diplomacy from all nations of Europe, Russia declared full mobilization. At this time in history, Mobilization meant War. This story follows what happened after that fateful day from the viewpoint of Czar Nicholas II of the Romanov Family.

Some people may have thought that Nicholas II was the last Czar of Russia. But was he really?

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Fri May 06, 2016 8:38 am

After much diplomatic maneuvering, this is the result:


Mobilization means war, and war has fallen upon my beloved Imperial Russian Empire. For our concerns, we have three theaters of war at the moment: the Eastern Theater, the Balkan Theater and the Caucasus Theater. Let's meet the Commanders-In-Chief (CIC) of each theater.

[color="#008000"]Eastern Front Theater[/color]

The Grand Duke Nicholas Nikolaevich Romanov, my first cousin once removed, and affectionately nicknamed Nikolasha by the Imperial Family so as not to confuse the two of us (I am almost 12 years his junior), is not only CIC of the Eastern Front Theater, but also CIC of the entire Russian Imperial Army. Nikolasha distinguished himself in the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78 despite his youth (21 y.o.) and serving under his father, who was CIC. From then on, Nikolasha had a reputation as a tough commander, yet respected by his troops and his experience was really as a trainer of soldiers rather than in battle. During the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-05, I kept Nikolasha out of the war because I needed a loyal general in command at home culminating in the Russian Revolution of 1905 (fomented mainly by newly-emancipated peasants, ethnic minorities (especially Jews, since I am an anti-Semite!), the educated classes after a relaxation of discipline in the schools and lastly by a nascent industrial-working class. A coup was imminent and the Grand Duke was the only man in Russia with enough prestige to keep the loyalty of the army. When I asked him to assume the role of military dictator he refused, drew his pistol and threatened to kill himself if I did not accept the reforms offered by Count Sergei Witte and I relented. Nikolasha also had a reputation for being a very pious man and appointing men of humble origins to positions of authority.


Nicholas Nikolaevich (3-1-1 - Strategic, Offensive & Defensive Ratings, seniority 57, politics 10, no experience and 80 maximum cohesion) is a By the Book Strategist and as CIC provides +4 CP and +1 Troop Quality when active, to all commanders of land forces. He is also an Admired Commander and provides 25% increase in the fatigue recovery rate of units under his command. Nikolasha is also Diplomatic and provides +1 CP and +1 additional CP per ability level above 1, to any stack he commands. He is fixed in Minsk for 4 turns.

[color="#8B4513"]Balkan Front Theater[/color]

Radomir Putnik, the first Field Marshall and Chief of the General Staff in the Balkan Wars of 1912 & 1913 had spectacular success against the Ottomans and was, in fact, involved in all the wars Serbia had participated in since 1876.


Radomir Putnik (5-3-4, seniority 999, politics 10, 1 star 10/30 experience and 85 max cohesion) is by far the most talented general in the Eastern Entente (EE). Unfortunately, he is located in Serbia and cannot be strategically redeployed to Russia. Evidently, he cannot hop on a plane to Minsk. I am not confident we can establish a rail line to Serbia so he will have to fend for himself at least for the beginning of the war. As a Strategic Genius, this CIC provides +1 Strategic, +1 Initiative and +5 Frontage Bonus when active, to all commanders of land forces. As a level 2 Gifted Commander, he provides +2 CP and +1 additional CP per ability level to any stack he commands. Radomir is also a level 2 Surpriser, providing a 20% chance of surprising the enemy (first fire) for the stack he commands. He is activated in Belgrade this turn.

[color="#800080"]Caucasus Front Theater[/color]

Count Illarion Ivanovich Vorontsov-Dashkov, 76 y.o, has been the Governor General of the Caucasus Viceroyalty since 1905. He also took part of the conquest of Central Asia back in the 1860's.


Illarion Vorontsov-Dashkov (2-2-1, seniority 94, politics 10, no experience and 80 max cohesion) is a By the Book Strategist and as CIC provides +4 CP and +1 Troop Quality if active, to all commanders of land forces. As a Master Logistician, he provides a 25% reduction on supply consumption to his entire stack. He is locked in Kars until attacked.

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Fri May 06, 2016 5:16 pm

Our ancient nemesis, the Ottoman Empire, unbeknownst to the rest of the world, signed a secret treaty with the German government on August 2 (I cannot divulge how I found this out, whether it be from friends inside Turkey or through a mystic, I will not say). This move imperils our already fragile economy; if the Ottoman's close the Dardenelles to Russian shipping we will not be able to sell our produce abroad nor receive vital supplies that are already all too scarce. I cannot trust the gangland rabble, now led by Talaat Pasha, the last of the Young Turks who came out of Macedonia and deposed the bloody butcher Sultan Abdul Hamid. This was supposed to be a democratic cleansing, but this turned into a government of bloody debauchery where murder, torture and terror consolidated their gains.

As of right now, we have plenty of conscripts (2080) but are short of everything else. We have but 200 State Funds and will need to greatly increase inflation and reduce national morale (NM) by printing state funds on a regular basis. We have only 10 War Supply (WS) and produce but 86 per month from our various cities. Battles will be extremely important as we cannot afford to lose any and must pick up as much as we can; this means picking our battles capriciously will lead to certain defeat. We currently have 31 ammunition and only produce 31 from a meager 9 cities. As ammo is only needed for medium, heavy and fort artillery as well as naval vessels we will be concentrating on acquiring field artillery when possible which means quick assaults of fortresses will not occur. However, we will need to build munitions factories when our funds allow. This is an expensive proposition as it requires 200 State Funds and 100 WS and each munitions factory produces only 5 ammo every half month. Lastly, our rail capacity is 600 (as compared to the 1500 rail points the CP enjoy each turn) but we currently start with none. We will recover 100 every turn in August and 200 both turns in September so moving vast armies across the nation quickly during this war cannot happen.

Our Grand Headquarters (GHQ) is composed of only the CIC, Nicholas Nikoaevich's Rossya Armiya which currently has no men under him and stationed in Minsk and 4 subordinate generals: Alexsei Brusilov's (5-4-1) 8-ya Armiya stationed in Kaminiets, Nikolai Ruzski's (3-1-1) 3-ya Armiya stationed in Dubno, Anton Salza's (3-2-0) 4-ya Armiya stationed in Lublin and Pavel Plehve's (3-3-1) 5-ya Armiya stationed in Kowel. The Rossya Armiya will not be activated for 4 turns while the 4 subordinate armiya's will be activated after one turn.

All the participating nations in this war have gone with historical war plans (my favorite to use when playing a side for the first time so I can gauge my progress). So, for us, our objectives during the turns of August and September 1914 will be (in order of our plan of attack): Czernowitz, Tannenberg, Lemberg, Koenigsberg and Przemysl.

This will require two main prongs of attack. In the north, Pavel Rennenkampf's (2-3-0) 1-ya Armeskii will attack from Wladislavov and take Gumbinnen and Wehlau. In the south, Aleksandr Samsanov's (2-3-0) 2-ya Armeskii will attack from Mlawa and take Allenstein, Tannenberg and Braunsberg. The two armiya's will then attack Koenigsberg from two directions. Hopefully, these two leaders will get along better than they have since the Battle of Mukden in the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-05 where Samsanov accused Rennenkampf of failing to assist him in the fighting, even though it was Rennenkampf replacing Mikhail Alekseyev in command of the left flank that stabilized the situation. Since this time, the two have been lifelong antagonists.

The other attack will be on Austria-Hungary (AH). It will start with our best leader, Aleksei Brusilov's (5-4-1) 8-ya Armiya leaving Kaminiets and taking Czernowitz via Chotin Fort. Meanwhile, Nikolai Ruzski's (3-1-1) 3-ya Armiya will leave Dubno and take Zloczow and be adjacent to Lemberg and Pavel Plehve's (3-3-1) 5-ya Armiya will leave Kowel and take Rawa Ruska then march to Busk and be adjacent to Lemberg. Brusilov will need to back track and take Tarnopol and then meet up with Ruzski in Zloczow when the three armiya's will collide on Lemberg. This will require a side force to take the rails leading from Kaminiets to Tarnopol to hasten Brusilov's arrival in Zloczow. Time permitting (we only have 2 months) the three armiya's will then march to Przemysl from Lemberg and possibly meet up with Anton Salza's (3-2-0) 4-ya Armiya who will rail from Lublin to Kielce, cross the river and attack Tarnow (by-passing Krakau) then move on to take Jaroslaw and then join the attack on Przemysl if all goes according to plan. This armiya may be needed to defend any AH ideas of taking their objectives of Ivangorad, Lublin, Dubno, Kowel (or Belgrade, which they won't be able to help) while Platon Lechitski's (3-3-0) 9-ya Armiya will most likely defend Warsaw or react accordingly depending on circumstances.

I have no idea what meeting the objectives will do other than gaining the cities and the corresponding VP's and NM, but we'll see.

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Fri May 06, 2016 8:28 pm

And so the war begins. On 9 August 1914, Bohm-Ermolli's Armiya of 73k men attacked Belgrade and was defended by Radomir Putnik and 117k brave Serbians. Immediately, the cowardly AH commander prepared to retreat and was soundly beaten. They then tried to counter march and were again beaten, losing an entire Hungarian Reserve Division. The third round continued and the battle tightened up a bit and by the fourth round the enemy managed to single out Stepa Stepanovic's 3rd Corps in battle but the Serbians still well outperformed the AH soldiers and destroyed an Austrian Infantry Division. The fifth round continued to see the 3rd Corps outperform the attackers and finally the battle ended when Zvojin Misic's 1st Corps rejoined the fight and helped to destroy a Cavalry Division and Nadas' 12th Army Corps. Both forces remain in Belgrade and very depleted of men. All told, the Serbians lost less than 14k men while killing over 57k of the enemy, taking 5700 prisoners, 8 WS and 4 NM. A glorious start of the war for the EE!

For his staunch defense, Stepanovic's (5-3-4) seniority improved from 28 to 23 and will be promoted to a 3-star leader.

Not to be outdone by our Serbian allies, the Battle of Tannenberg commenced on 15 August where Fedor Marston (2-2-1) led our Russian forces of 104k men against the very dangerous Otto von Below (6-3-2) and 52k German soldiers. It was a tough battle and we lost a Cavalry Division but managed a victory. We lost over 11k men and the German defenders lost almost 8k. Both forces remain in Tannenberg while the German Mackensen's Army Corps is sitting in Allenstein and in the direct path of Mlawa.

Aleksandr Samsanov had marched to Wilna and received his HQ's command and will rail back to command his 2-ya Armeskii. His rival, Rennenkampf had only made it to Koschedair and will rail to Wilna to get his HQ command next turn. Crowing could be heard in Wilna all night long.

[color="#008000"]Eastern Front[/color]: Rennenkampf's forces did take Gumbinnen unopposed and now will march to Wehlau. One Armeiskii Korpus is staying in Gumbinnen to protect the rail line. From Lublin, Saltza's 4-ya Armiya will march to Rawa Ruska while a Cavalry Division will ride on to Busk to establish the rail link. From Dubno, Ruzski's 3-ya Armiya will march to Zloczow with an Armeiskii Korpus while a Cavalry Division will ride on to Tarnopol to help establish the rail link. Plehve's 5-ya Armiya is inactive so will march slowly towards Rawa Ruska but will not arrive this turn. From Kaminiets, Brusilov's 8-ya Armiya will attack Czernowitz along with an Armeiskii Korpus while another Armeiskii Korpus will march to Zbrucz to establish the rail link.

[color="#8B4513"]Balkan Front[/color]: Although victorious, the Serbians took a lot of hits and will seek safety inside the fort in Belgrade to recover. Stepanovic's 2nd Serbian Armiya will take the long road to Belgrade to avoid being the first unit to arrive since they too took a lot of hits and will arrive in Belgrade one day after Pavle Juric-Sturm's healthy 3rd Serbian Armiya. The Montenegrin Armiya will move up to Shavnik.

[color="#0000FF"]Western Front[/color]: Germany made successful attacks in Belgium but haven't taken Antwerp or Bruxelles yet. They also took Sedan in France. The Japanese have joined the WE.

The Overall Situation: A good start as we lead in NM and have the fewest losses. Let's hope we can hold onto Tannenberg as Below is a dangerous opponent. We are purchasing an Engineer Brigade and Field Hospital in Minsk and continuing to purchase replacement chits in needed areas.

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Sun May 22, 2016 12:54 am

I've been hoping for an update? How's the Tsar????

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Sat Jun 04, 2016 2:10 am

I started this too close to ending my CP campaign and haven't been able to be motivated to play again. I am getting close (even with HOI4 coming out in a few days). My pal Hillary reminded me that Imperial families like ours are allowed to do resets with Russia so I'll press the reset button very soon and do this campaign in earnest.

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Mon Jun 27, 2016 9:55 pm

Looking forward to the new edition.

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