AoE 2 DE Campaigns suggestions - Feedback DLC: Return of Rome

Romans actually live in Italy, speak latin, and descend from Rome.
Byzantines live in Greece/Anatolia, speak greek, and descend from Rome.

Both are heirs of the Roman Empire, but one is significantly more Roman than the other.

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Exactly! To me it feels like a case of confounding the political apparatus with people in flesh and bone… It’s like thinking that a nation or a culture is its head of state or its kings, consuls etc.

I think you are underestimating the role of Greek culture, especially the Greek language, in Ancient Rome. It was basically the second language of the Empire, and in many parts of the Empire it was de facto the official language over Latin.
When the Eastern Empire stopped using Latin it was just because the Empire had been reduced to the Greek-speaking provinces, not because of any profound political or cultural change.

The Byzantines called themselves Romaioi, and even as late as the 19th century Greeks typically referred to the Greek language as Romaiika. The name Byzantine was pushed by the HRE as propaganda to discredit their claim to the title of Rome.

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Yes, the Byzantines are in fact Eastern Romans (Eastern Roman Empire)… the Byzantines ARE Romans, only their capital is Byzantium, but Justianian could have moved his capital to Rome and they would still be Romans…

The Byzantine Empire,[note 1] also referred to as the Eastern Roman Empire or Byzantium, was the continuation of the Roman Empire primarily in its eastern provinces during Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, when its capital city was Constantinople. It survived the fragmentation and fall of the Western Roman Empire in the 5th century AD and continued to exist for an additional thousand years until the fall of Constantinople to the Ottoman Empire in 1453. During most of its existence, the empire remained the most powerful economic, cultural, and military force in Europe. The terms “Byzantine Empire” and “Eastern Roman Empire” were coined after the end of the realm; its citizens continued to refer to their empire as the Roman Empire and to themselves as Romans[note 2]—a term which Greeks continued to use for themselves into Ottoman times. Although the Roman state continued, modern historians distinguish the Byzantine Empire from the earlier Roman Empire due to the imperial seat moving from Rome to Byzantium, the Empire’s integration of Christianity, and the predominance of Greek instead of Latin.[5]

During the high period of the Roman Empire known as the Pax Romana, the western parts of the empire went through Latinization, while the eastern parts of the empire maintained to a large degree their Hellenistic culture. Several events from the 4th to 6th centuries mark the period of transition during which the Roman Empire’s Greek East and Latin West diverged. Constantine I (r. 324–337) reorganised the empire, made Constantinople the capital, and legalised Christianity. Under Theodosius I (r. 379–395), Christianity became the state religion, and other religious practices were proscribed. In the reign of Heraclius (r. 610–641), the empire’s military and administration were restructured, and Greek was gradually adopted for official use in place of Latin.

The empire in 555 under Justinian the Great, at its greatest extent since the fall of the Western Roman Empire (its v422412 in pink)

The territorial evolution of the Eastern Roman Empire under each imperial dynasty until its fall in 1453.

The territorial evolution of the Eastern Roman Empire under each imperial dynasty until its fall in 1453.

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You’re right, indeed being reduced to the sole greek area is in itself what lead to a profound cultural change. Before Muslims to me the eastern Roman empire could still be called more or less Roman, after that it was a Christian Greek empire speaking greek and living enclosed in a Greek area of influence. It’s very singular that I need to specify why byzantines are greek and not Romans when all cultural, linguistic and geographical evidences point to that lol.

I’m with pirenne in this that the Roman world in the sense of the cultural basin of the ancient world ceased to exist when the Mediterranean area ceased to be the center of the empire. This is a process that started with the foundation of Constantinople and ended with the Muslims having seized what once was the Latin world in middle east, Africa and southern Europe. Europe as a concept (which I think was first mentioned in the battle of tours, coincidentally?) was not what the Roman ancient world was, the balance of Europe moved north and east in middle ages.

And religion played a big role in this. The two major monotheistic religions of late antiquity, Christianity and Islam ended the ancient way of thinking and both came from the East. The Byzantine empire has never been culturally pagan so it’s really singular to consider it part of Rome (even ignoring geography). Yeah the neoplatonic academy of Athens… But it was not the cultural elite anymore by the time it was close by Justinian (and I consider Justinian still Roman anyway).

Anyway I’m not trying to convince anyone and I’m sorry for these long posts. Just pointing out that we’re talking about two different plans, one is political, the other is cultural. I think people are their culture, not their leaders, so even if the holy Roman emperor call himself like that, that doesn’t make him and his people Roman at all (was Barbarossa more or less Roman than Constantine IX? It’s like which cat is more brown, a white one or a black one idk what example to make lol). I just don’t see why this isn’t true for a greek Basileus and his people too.

Rome, as a cultural propeller, was gone already by the time of Constantine but as an identity didn’t disappeared until the 7th or 8ty century and this period is what is known as late antiquity. During this time Rome was being transformed from a culture to a myth, from something real to an ideal to present yourself in front of the people and legitimise yourself. It was ok to fall for the trick 1000 years ago and I understand being romantic about being Romans but Constantine IX was culturally Roman? Come on… Even ottomans and Russians squabbled for who had to be called Caesar after Constantinople fell… Does that make them Romans too? Lol

Obviously not, much like the HRE, but the Byzantines were inderd a directly and smooth evolution of Ancient Rome. The only najor cultural change, adopting Christianity, had already happened in Antiquity. But the point is that we, centuries later, have decided on our own (and by “we” I mean only the Western world) that the Eastern Roman empire stopped being Roman, even if everyone else, including themselves still consiered them Romans. Yes, the were different to Ancient Romans, but does that make them not Romans? Richard Lionheart and Churchil were born 8 centuries apart, would you say any of them is not English, despite all the religious, linguistic and cultural changes England has had.

And consider this hypothetical case, if Switzerland loses it German-speaking part of the country and it’s reduced to only the French-speaking part, would the remainder part of the country stop being Switzerland?

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Of course you make a good point that it’s hard to tell when byzantines stopped being Romans, no one can give you a precise date (I’d agree with you that it’s mostly when they were confined to Constantinople because the point of Rome among many was to be a universal power which they were not, but this is only one point of many in why they were not culturally Roman anymore, they became an ethnicity while being Roman was never about an homogeneous ethnic group). But that doesn’t mean it didn’t happen at one point.

About the examples you made I’m a lot more ignorant of British history but I guess Churchill and Richard lionheart have way more in common than let’s say Marcus atilius regulus and Alexios komnenos. And about Switzerland I really wouldn’t know how to answer honestly ahah. Those are things you need a lot of specific knowledge to say something meaningful.

Let me put it this way. If Constantinople fell in 626 because of the avar and Persian siege while the mauro Roman kingdom survived in Africa would you call it Roman? I mean it would probably make more sense than calling byzantines Romans because in Mauritania Latin was still very in vogue in 626, Africa was deeply romanised, institutions were still the ones of late western Rome etc but still it was a survival rump state of Rome. Or like if at the same time in Britannia a romano-briton dux proclaimed himself western emperor (and it happened in Italy, a guy called eleutherius who was exarch of Ravenna tried to proclaim himself western emperor at the beginning of the VII century, a sign that not even Italian byzantines really believed in eastern Roman authority anymore) would you have taken him seriously? That’s how I see the Byzantine empire after Heraclius in a way, a land that was conquered by Romans time before and now sort of lived out of vestiges but with no authentic connection to the ideology and culture driving ancient Rome, not even the political institutions at a certain point (the office of consul was the last being abolished by Leo the wise and it was arguably the last vestige of Rome but it was completely meaningless being appointed consul since the times of gallienus at the very least if not before).

I don’t think that’s exactly the same thing, since that kingdom was created by a claimant, not sanctioned by the empire itself. And as the name says, it was a state that amalgated two different cultures, Roman and Berber, i.e. Berbers, unlike Greeks, were not considered Romans.

This is different from the Byzantine Empire, which is just the Roman Empire, but confined to its Greek provinces.

And I also think it’s crucial to point out that both them and the other civilizations they interacted with, considered them fully Romans. It’s only the Western World that refuses to consider them Romans. Obviously their culture is not the same as Ancient Romans, but they were still Romans, just Medieval Romans, a different stage in their culture, much like modern English are not the same thing thing as medieval English, but both are equally English. So for me, Byzantines are not Ancient Romans, they are simply Medieval Romans. This entire separation has been created by the Western World to justify entities like the HRE and the Holy See. It’s hard to accept the Holy Roman Emperor’s authority for Catholic subjects when there’s still an actual Roman Emperor in Constantinople, so they had to delegitimise it at any cost .
Even when the Crusader took Constantinople, they were basically forced to stop using Roman for the name of the empire so they wouldn’t enrage the Pope

No, but they did it because in the case of the Ottomans they conquered Constantinople and because in the case of the Russians, they are Orthodox and Ivan IV was half Paleologo on his grandmother Sofia’s side…

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That’s fair, only thing I would add it’s that western Romans were already quite cold towards Byzantium since after the gothic war when Justinian practically destroyed Italy and Rome in an attempt to reconquer it.
So the invention of the holy Roman empire was more of a necessity being any semblance of authority in the west long gone (Theodoric was probably the last).

And about the mauro Roman kingdom it was really just a continuation of the province of Mauritania tingentis after vandals came (their kings even called themselves emperors but were eventually defeated by byzantines during the VI century). And many Berbers were Romans at all effects, think of Saint Augustine or even after the fall of the west, poet flavius cresconius corippus.

Thank you for this input.

I just wanted to point out that the Byzantians were at least not Latin speaking Romans, they consisted mainly of Koine Greeks whereby these were subordinate to the Eastern Roman Empire.

Which is ironically the result of another ancient piece of propaganda, that Western Rome fell in 476, and the Eastern Romans had to liberate Italy from the chaos and barbarism, when the average citizens actually didn’t care who was rulling (it didn’t affect them that much) and the Goths respected many of the Roman institutions, they saw themselves like foederati. As you pointed out, it was the Roman reconquest what actually ravaged Italy, and not the “tragic fall of Western Rome” in 476.
It’s actually amazing how much propaganda from many many centuries ago has conditioned our thinking. Fortunately, historians are now starting to reconsider many thing we had taken for granted to try to find the truth.

Yes, that’s true as well, however since that kingdom didn’t last that much, we can’t really say much about the evolution of its culture, as it stands, it was a kingdom of Romans and Berbers, which is literally what their monarchs said to refer to their domain.

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Justinian did some goofy imperialism, at times it feels like the first centuries of Byzantium were a parody of Roman imperialism (sculpture had something caricatural in late antiquity). If you’re interested in the topic I made a campaign about this period called “Constantinople - the end of the ancient world” ranging from Constantine to Heraclius so going through Justinian as well.

Mauro Roman kingdoms lasted between vandals and Islam so almost 300 years in what was late antiquity, after which African Roman identity disappeared. Probably lot of stuff happened in the meanwhile but we have very few info left unfortunately. Even here I’m making a campaign about the lasts of these kingdoms, altava and the Aures, but it’s not finished yet.

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I finished almsot all three new campaigns.

I like them! The bad is that we only have 3 of them. Also the limited civ roster and build sets limit the diversity of enemies that you’re facing.

I hope that new DLCs will come for RoR, plenty room to explore and stories to be told.

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Sure, yes. I hope that the campaign overview maps will finally be improved. An improved campaign overview would also give more room for new stories.

I tried playing the Sargon campaign.

The tiny pop limit and difficult-to-counter Scythe Chariots means that I couldn’t even get past the first scenario.

In my opinion Sargon in one of the hardest campaigns in the entire game. After beating it, Trajan and Pyrrhus were a piece of cake.
The official difficulty (2 swords) is completely off for these campaigns

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Most of the Sargon campaign is actually very easy, the fourth level on the other hand…

Well the third level is kind of a pain now that I remember. 11

The other two campaigns aren’t that bad. Sargon is probably the hardest campaign.

Now they will put 4 more campaigns on June 2: Rise of Egypt (Egyptians) (which is the tutorial campaign), The First Punic War (Carthaginians) (which was a demo campaign in Rise of Rome) and 2 campaigns of the rest that the community…

You can take them down with melee units…

I’m going to spend them in July to see if they are as difficult as you say…I like challenges xd…

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