It takes place between 1595 - 1601 so right at the end of Age of Empires 2 timeline. The oldest campaign is from 1604 so I think it fits.
Here is the whole story:
TL;DV - The 3 Romanian principalities of Wallachia, Moldavia and Transylvania were sandwiched between the great powers of Austria, Poland and the Ottomans who would fight for influence over them. Often a great power would sponsor a pretender, he would invade the principality he had a claim in with an army, take the throne and become vassal to the great power that sponsored him, repeat ad nauseam.
When the Long War began, Transylvania, Wallachia and Moldavia (all 3 were Ottoman vassals at that point) signed an alliance. Michael the Brave was the ruler of Wallacha. He attacked the Ottomans in his own territory and ravaged present-day Bulgaria, at the end of his campaign he was in marching distance of Constantinople.
He applied this very efficent tactic of: Attack Ottomans in their own territory, loot villages for food, defeat Ottoman armies who attack you, use Christians in the Ottoman Empire & Mercenaries as new recruts. Works 10/10, would recommend.
He eventually retreated to Wallachia due to problems at home. And then the Ottoman Sultan stopped the war on the Austrian front to deal with Michael the Brave. The main army agains the Austrians moved to fight Michael the Brave (This is where he had the excellent victory at Calugareni), eventually the Transylvanians and Moldavians joined him. And together the 3 armies of Wallachia, Moldavia and Transylvania beat the crap out of the Ottomans in Wallachia, completely liberating it.
After the Ottomans were driven out of Wallachia, Michael the Brave signed an advantageous peace.
But then the Moldavian ruler who helped Michael the Brave clear Wallachia was dethroned. (See TL;DV on how a great power would sponsor a pretender with an army in exchange for loyality) Great Power - Austrians. Pretender - Aaron the Tyrant. Principalitiy - Moldavia. And shortly after, the same but this time Great Power - Poland.
And Transylvania wanted to conquer Wallachia. But Michael pulled a NO U and conquered Transylvania instead. Then Moldavia was mad, because both Transylvania and Moldavia were backed by Poland at this point. Michael the Brave pulled an “no, I’m mad” and conquered Moldavia instead.
He wanted to create a new kingdom that would encomphasis all 3 Romanian principalities in order to counter the influence of the 3 great powers. Despite Transylvania having a romanian majority they were mostly peasants and Michael the Brave did not grant them rights out of fear of alienating the Hungarian nobility (which proved futile by the way as they would soon ‘betray’ him, ‘betray’ is a bit of a harsh word as they have never really been on his side).
He tried to economically integrate all 3 principalities into 1 system and moved the nobles around but 3 months later (after his union) the Austrians sent George Basta and he was defeated with a feigned retreat.
Being defeated in Transylvania, Poland quickly attacked Moldavia and Wallachia. His union ended in 3 months as quickly as it has began.
So he went to the Austrian Emperor and asked for support. Given that the Hungarians revolted against the Austrians just like they revolted against Michael the Brave, the Emperor accepted his support. The together with his old enemy, George Basta attacked Transylvania and defeated the Hungarians. Then, he tried to make a move for Alba Iulia to become ruler of Transylvania again. George Basta assassinated him.
Mission No / Timestamp in the video / Title / Description.
- 8:20 - “Raid Into Bulgaria” - A mission about how he was raiding Bulgaria. (endign with the retreat in Wallachia)
- 13:00 - “Battle of Calugareni” - A mission about the battle of Calugareni. 20.000 vs 100.000 (ending with the forceful retreat to the Carpathian mountains)
- 30:50 - “Wallachia Strikes Back” - The combined arms of Wallachia, Transylvania and Moldavia streamrolling the Ottomans out of Wallachia. (ending with the Battle of Giurgiu)
- 49:20 - “A Move on Transylvania” - Michael the Brave defeats the Transylvanian ruler and becomes prince of Transylvania. (ends with him being crowned prince in Alba Iulia)
- 58:20 - “A Move on Moldavia” - Michael the Breave defeats the Moldavian ruler and becomes prince of Moldavia. (ends with him being crowned prince in Iasi; the campaign story intro could start with him being crowned prince in Wallachia)
- 1:10:00 - “The Beginning of the End” - 3 Months Later. The Austrians attack under general Basta, Michael tries to defend his newly created kingdom. Initially defeats the enemy, but is fooled by a feign retreat and defeated. (After his defeat, he is driven out of Transylvania, sensing weakness, the Polish attack Moldavia and Wallachia to install their own puppet rulers on the throne, Michael’s short-lived union has ended).
“Never in Romanian history was a moment of such highness and glory so closely followed by bitter failure.” - historian Constantin C. Giurescu
EDIT: Found a shorter version of the video, this one only has 20 minutes.
As the video says at the end, the most significant long-term impact was that this was the beginning of a Romanian national idea. From now on, Romanian Wallachians, Moldavians and Transylvanians would begin writing of a would-be “unified Romanian state”. Michael the Brave was the foundation around which true independence and lasting union would be fought for and won in the centuries to follow. In spite of his life, his greatest achievement was probably one he didn’t even think of, one that would be greater than his life, he became an inspiration.