What campaign idea you like best?
- Bassarab & Bogdan
- Stephen the Great
The Romanians/Vlachs, if they are to be added, already have the Dracula campaign. However, there is an issue with that. You will have a DLC civ play a non-DLC campaign. Maybe this is a good thing allowing players to try the new Romanian civ before they decide to buy it, or maybe the devs want to leave the Dracula campaign as it is not to add playable DLC civs in non-DLC campaigns.
With that in mind, in the event that Dracula isn’t turned into a Romanian campaign, and a Slavic/Balkan DLC comes out, there are 2 others less popular but equally interesting campaigns:
This is mostly a concept, more focused on the story of the events, than the map itself.
- Bassarab & Bogdan. → Founders of Wallachia & Moldavia, 3 missions each, total 6 missions.
- Stephen the Great → Best ruler of Moldavia, he ruled for 47 years in the game of thrones that was Moldavia, he fought a total of 48 battles during his lifetime and won 46 of them. Defeating: Ottomans, Poles, Hungarians, Wallachians and Tattars. Only losing to the Ottomans twice. The Pope named him “Champion of Christ” despite being Orthodox. For every victory he had, he would shoot an arrow in the sky and later build a Church at the place it landed to thank God for victory. He sent letters to all European powers asking them to start a new Crusade against the Ottomans, but none accepted because they were too busy fighting each other. Helped Vlad the Impaler to gain the throne of Wallachia in 1456. In return, Vlad the Impaler helped Stephen the Great take his father throne in the same year.
1. Bassarab & Bogdan
In Wallachia: Basarab became ruler of Wallachia in 1310, he revolted against the Kingdom of Hungary in 1325 and took the Banate of Severin from Hungary (de facto independent). The independence was still unrecognized by Hungary. When Michael Asen III attacked Serbia he supported the Bulgarians but were defeated at the Battle of Velbazhd in 1330. The same year, with the Wallachian army defeated, Charles I of Hungary invaded Wallachia with 30.000 men, he was allowed to take Targoviste and plunder Wallachia with no ressistance, but when he was returning home the Wallachian army of 10.000 men awaited him at the Transylvanian passes, where the Wallachians ambushed and almost annihilated the royal troops in the Battle of Posada. But the Kingdom of Hungary wouldn’t recognise Wallachia as independent until 1344.
According to a contemporary account: The Wallachian army, led by Basarab himself, probably numbered less than 10,000 men and consisted of cavalry, infantry archers, and some locally recruited peasants. When Charles saw his best knights being killed, without being able to fight back, while the escape routes were blocked by the Wallachian cavalry, he gave his royal robes and insignia to one of his captains, who died under a hail of arrows and stones, and, with a few loyal subjects, made a difficult escape to Visegrád clad in dirty civilian clothes.
In Moldavia: Dragos was made ruler of Moldavia by the Hungarians in 1345 (one year after Hungary recognised Wallachia’s independence). He was succeded by his son Sas in 1353, who was then succeded by his son Balc in 1359. But around the same time, another Romanian, Bogdan, who has been the Duke of Maramures (inside Hungary, Transylvania) since at least 1342 (first mention of him). He fell into conflict with King Louis I of Hungary and requested the support of a Romanian knez (Count) below him in 1349. Giula refused, and Bogdan invaded and took his lands. King Louis I of Hungary demanded Bogdan restore Giula’s lands but he refused. Bogdan stood in disgrace with the King of Hungary, but none of them were able to make a move against the other.
Learning that the Romanians in Moldavia were opposed to King Louis I’s authority, when Sas died in 1359, Bogdan left Maramures and went to Moldavia where he took command of the already existing Moldavian revolt and defeated Balc, who fled for Hungary. In retaliation, Louis I of Hungary confiscated Bogdan’s domain in Maramureş and donated it to Balc. In retaliation, Bogdan declared Moldavia independent from the Kingdom of Hungary.
ACTUAL MISSIONS & STORY - An actual Moldavian that existed narrates to King Władysław IV of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth the story of how his people became independent to help him in his campaigns:
The cutscenes start in year 1633 (don’t worry, the actual campaigns don’t take place in 1633), it is the start of the Polish-Ottoman War of 1633-1634. Knowing he will have to face the Wallachian and Moldavain troops who are loyal to the Ottomans, King Władysław IV of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth sends for one of his advisors, a native Moldavian named Grigore Ureche (real person, really served Władysław IV, this is why I chose 1633) in hopes of finding if there is a way to make the Moldavians and Wallachians switch sides, Grigore Ureche, starts telling him about the story of his people, how they became a free people centuries ago.
PLAYING AS BASSARAB.
Mission 1 Intro → Our Disloyal Subject: (possible co-op partner Nicolae Alexandru, Bassarab’s son and general)
Władysław IV: Grigore.
Grigore: Yes, my lord?
Władysław IV: The war with the Turks is about to begin, in order to reach the Ottoman territory I will have to cross Moldavia and Wallachia, you were born there, weren’t you? Tell me about these vlachs, maybe I can convince them to side with me against the Ottomans.
Grigore: Yes, my lord. But my people do not call themselves, vlachs, that what they are called by others, it comes from an old germanic word for “stranger”, my people call themselves “romanians” from the latin ######### meaning “citizen of the Roman Empire”, we still consider ourselves of Rome. And our country that you call “Wallachia”, we call it “Țeara Rumânească” meaning “the Romanian land”.
Władysław IV: Enough with these pointless details, I want to know if there is a way to make the romanians switch sides.
Grigore: My people have a way with wars for independence, you see, before we were under the Ottomans we were under the Hungarians, it all began when the Hungarians drove out the Mongols, in order to secure their eastern border, they organized the native population in a client state, but that would only last until 1310 when Basarab revolted and attacked Severin. Basarab would not be the first romanian to revolt against the Hungarians, Litovoi revolted in 1277 only to be killed and replaced by his brother, Bărbat, but Basarab would be the first to succeed.
→ In the actual mission, you could begin with an army and some villages, and your goal is to capture a heavily fortified town (Severin).
Mission 1 Outro:
Grigore: And so Basarab captured Severin. The Hungarians would not let this treason go lightly. They prepared their forces, but bid their time, waiting for the perfect time to attack.
Władysław IV: Hmm, so they can’t be trusted as a vassal state.
Mission 2 Intro → Arrogance: (possible co-op partner: Bulgarians)
Władysław IV: What then? He got his independence but the Hungarians would not forget this.
Grigore: Then, Bassarab became arrogant, he saw himself independent and started dwelling into international politics, he supported the Michael III of Bulgaria agains the Serbs, it was almost his undoing.
→ In the actual mission, your troops have an ally, and you have to defeat the Serbs with the help of the Bulgarians, afterwards, reinforcements arrive and you have to retreat with Bassarab (at least he should escape) before you are found and killed. (it becames an escape mission at the end)
Mission 2 Outro:
Władysław IV: This was the perfect time for Hungary to attack, when Wallachia is weak. With his army scattered he would stand no chance against the full Hungarian army.
Grigore: The Hungarians were just as sure my lord.
Mission 3 Intro → Battle of Poasda: (possible co-op partner Nicolae Alexandru, Bassarab’s son and general)
Władysław IV: So, what happened then?
Grigore: Rather than facting the enemy army directly, and you will see this is a running theme among our people, Bassarab picked his battles, he knew he could not face the Hungarian army head on, so he had to improvise, avoid them until he found an advantageous terrain and the Hungarian army unaware. His army of conscripted peasants could not compete with the Hungarian knights, at least not head on.
→ In the actual mission, you being in Wallachia, with various towns: Poenari, Campulung, Argesi, Targoviste (the capital), the Hungarian army invades with Paladins and Champions, you cannot beat them, you have mainly Pikemen and Archers. You have to avoid the Hungarian army on the map (they will go and destroy each town, you can try and ressist or slow them down to buy time but won’t be able to do much), while recruiting troops for your main army. And hopefully upgrade to Halebardier and Arbaletist. Then there is a narrow passage at Posada, you will have to prepare your forces and hold your army there, when the Hungarian army with vast superior numbers retreats, you will have to fight there. With your Halebariers on Paladins and Arbaletist on Champions.
Mission 3 Outro:
Grigore: When King Charles saw his best knights being killed, without being able to fight back, while the escape routes were blocked by the Wallachian cavalry, he gave his royal robes and insignia to one of his captains, who died under a hail of arrows and stones, and, with a few loyal subjects, made a difficult escape to Visegrád in dirty civilian clothes.
Władysław IV: And that was the end of the Hungarian dominance over Wallachia?
Grigore: No, my lord. The Hungarians would not recognize Wallachia’s independence until 1344, they left Wallachia alone to create another Vlach vassal state between themselves and the Golden Horde, where history repetead itself.
PLAYING AS BOGDAN I:
Mission 4 Intro → A Game of Thrones:
Władysław IV: That is Moldavia, correct?
Grigore: Yes, my lord. Dragos was made ruler of Moldavia by the Hungarians in 1345, with the same purpose as Bassarab, to serve as a buffer state between the Golden Horde and Hungary, but unlike Bassarab, he was loyal, his son Sas and grandson Balc were equally loyal.
Władysław IV: Didn’t you tell me that Moldavia was founded by Bogdan? How is this like Bassarabia if Moldavia was founded by Dragos who is loyal?
Grigore: Well my lord, history doesn’t exactly repeat itself, but it rhymes, while Moldavia was founded, Duke Bogdan of Maramures, who was not even in Moldavia but in Transylvania, fell into conflict with King Louis I of Hungary, but none could make a move against the other, they had to save face and not be the ones who started it. In order to have a strong and loyal army, Bogdan seeked first to secure the loyality of those below him, and so he came into conflict with another Romanian, count Giula, who refused to support Bogdan reaffirming his loyality to the crown of Hungary.
→ In this mission you play as Duke Bogdan and have to defeat Count Giula, also a Romanian civ.
Mission 4 Outro:
Władysław IV: Wouldn’t King Louis I punish this violation?
Grigore: He demanded Bogdan restore Giula’s lands but he refused, using whatever pretext he thought best to avoid open rebellion and bide his time.
Mission 5 Intro → To Greener Lands:
Władysław IV: It seems the king and duke were locked in a stalemate.
Grigore: Yes, my lord, each of them waiting for the perfect opportunity to strike against the other. The perfect time for Bogdan to strike was in 1359 when Dragos’ grandson, Balc, was crowned prince of Moldavia. There was already an existing revolt in Moldavia, against the ######### dynasty. The king of Hungary would not be concerned as he knew the new prince would be loyal to him. Little did the king know, taking advantage of this instability, Bogdan set his eyes to become the new prince of Moldavia, crossing the Carpathians with an army and taking the command of the revolt.
→ You play as Bogadan, cross the Carpathians into Moldavia and try to convince various nobles to support you instead. When you have enough support you march on the city of Suceava and capture it. Balc flees to Hungary.
Mission 5 Outro:
Władysław IV: An ambitious man this Bogdan was. So this is how Moldavia became independend?
Grigore: Not yet my liege, he still needed a legitimate reason. When Balc fled for Hungary, Louis I confiscated Bogdan’s domain in Maramureş and donated it to Balc, this was the justification Bogdan needed to declare Moldavia independent from the Kingdom of Hungary, each of them could accuse the other of not respecting their oath of vassalage without losing face.
Mission 6 Intro → The New Dynasty:
Władysław IV: Now the story begins to be similar to that of Wallachia, what happened next?
Grigore: The Hungarians sent three armies, unlike Bassarab’s recently defeated army in Wallachia, Bogdan’s army was more than ready to fight the Hungarians attacks. And Bogdan pushed back the Hungarian army, again, and again.
→ You play as Bogadan, now prince of Moldavia, 3 waves of Hungarian armies come from the Carpathians, you have to protect your cities (Suceava, Baia, Siret, Iasi) and defeat the Hungarian armies.
Mission 6 Outro:
Władysław IV: Let me guess, after that the Hungarians retreated and sued for peace.
Grigore: Yes my lord, and that is how we became independent, my lord, with stubbornness to exist. We would enjoy roughly a century of independence until the Ottomans came from the south, we weren’t incorporated into the Ottoman Empire without a fight, and due to our stubbornness remained vassal states who would have to pay yearly tribute to the Sultan, but were in practice independent. Although we had certain rulers that rose above and successfully resisted the Ottomans, like Mircea or Vlad or Stefan or the more recent Mihai, we could not compete with the might of the Ottomans, and we soon found ourselves under the claw of the Ottomans again. David does not always beat Goliath. But times will change my lord, in time, it will.
2. Stephen the Great
I believe I already made a Stephen the Great summary at the start of this topic. But here is a video summary:
ACTUAL MISSIONS & STORY - While treating him, a Venetian doctor treating Stephen on his deathbed to asks him about his cousin, Dracula, that he fought with:
Mission 1 Intro → Throne of Wallachia: (possible co-op partner: Vlad the Impaler)
Doctor: So, you fought with the famous Vlad the Impaler, Dracula?
Stephen: More than you know.
Doctor: Sounds like an interesting story, how did you both met?
Stephen: We’ve known each other since childhood, we were cousins, he was the heir of Wallachia and I of Moldavia. But tragedy struck both of us. He lost his father and with the help of the Ottomans became ruler of Wallachia as a puppet king, but was defeated and took refugee in Transylvania. Me? my father was killed by my uncle and he tried to kill me too, so I also took refugee in Transylvania. That’s when we first met after all these years, and I helped him take back his throne.
→ In the actual mission, you and Vlad start in Transylvania, your goal is to march into Wallachia and take Tagoviste to depose Vladislav II who took Vlad’s throne.
Mission 1 Outro:
Doctor: So you helped the dragon.
Stephen: Yes, I helped my cousin, but it wouldn’t be long until he repayed his debt.
Mission 2 Intro → Throne of Moldavia: (possible co-op partner: Vlad the Impaler)
Stephen: With Wallachia’s resources, Vlad helped me master an army and together we deposed Petru Arron, my uncle, who killed my father for the throne.
Doctor: Very honorable of such a dishonorable man.
Stephen: His methods were cruel, but necessary, Wallachia and Moldavia are but mere pawns in a game of the great powers, we cannot afford such luxury as morality.
Doctor: And they say you are a religious man.
→ In the actual mission, you and Vlad start in Wallachia, your goal is to march into Moldavia and take Suceava to depose Petru Arron who took Stephen’s throne.
Mission 2 Outro:
Doctor: You helped each other become rulers, impressive.
Stephen: But that was only the beginning of our troubles, Hungary and the Ottomans were still there.
Mission 3 Intro → Battle of Baia:
Doctor: What happened next?
Stephen: I became a Polish vassal for protection, this was not taken lightly by King Matthias Corvinus of Hungary, he saw it as a personal offense, so he invaded Moldavia hoping to put an end to my rule.
→ In the actual mission, King Matthias Corvinus leads the Black Army of Hungary into Moldavia, you are outnumbered, your goal is to defeat them before they reach Suceva, preferably at the city of Baia.
Mission 3 Outro:
Doctor: What happened next?
Stephen: He did what he did best, propaganda, making a big parade that he has won and the ruler of Moldavia has been pacified, while I was in Transylvania ravaging his lands, doing the same thing that he tried to do me. But at least his ambitions in Moldavia ended. Fool, why are we fighting each other? we should be fighting the turks.
Mission 4 Intro → A Brother Betrayed:
Doctor: This was the beginning of a peaceful reign, but it never is, isn’t it?
Stephen: Of course not, I’ve been in war more than I’ve been at peace in my lifetime, Vlad lost his throne to his younger brother, Radu the Handsome, who betrayed him to the Ottomans. Vlad went to the Hungarians for help, they betrayed him and imprisoned him. I went after Radu and the Ottomans sent the Tattars after me.
→ In the actual mission, you start Moldavia, your goal is to march into Wallachia and take Targoviste (again) to depose Radu the Handsome who took Vlad the Impaler’s throne. You put Laiota Basarab on the throne since Vlad is imprisoned by the Hungarians. The Tatars also attack you in the east.
Mission 4 Outro:
Doctor: You had the throne of Wallachia, but you didn’t have Vlad.
Stephen: Indeed, for all his excesses, he was a formidable fighter against the Ottomans.
Mission 5 Intro → Battle of Vaslui:
Doctor: So you came into conflict with the Ottomans.
Stephen: As I always knew I would have, I only wished I would have stacked the deck in my favor before this would happen. Vlad was in prison, Laiota Basarab who I put on the throne betrayed me, the Hungarian and the Polish Kings wouldn’t help me, where I failed diplomatically, I can more than make up for it militarily.
→ In the actual mission, this is how the battle played out, maybe someone can do it justice with a good campaign map:
Mission 5 Outro:
Doctor: Your cousin failed, but you, God seems to smile on you, Stephen.
Stephen: And I smile to him, for every victory I pledged myself to shoot an arrow to the sky and build a church where it lands, as a token of my gratitude.
Doctor: Ah, yes, the Champion of Christ, didn’t you try to launch another crusade afterwards but nobody joined?
Stephen: The words of an unimportant principality, even with my successes, are of no concern to the great powers, I wonder if half of the princes even read the letters I sent them.
Mission 6 Intro → Battle of Cosmin Forest:
Doctor: It seems nothing could stop you.
Stephen: Nothing can stop you until it does.
Doctor: How so?
Stephen: Nobody joined the crusade against the Ottomans, I was defeated at Valea Alba, but Mehmed the Conqueror failed to take Suceava, so he sued for peace, giving me favorable terms but I remained an Ottoman vassal. My former suzerain, the Polish King John Albert, who did not help me at all, finally came with an army with Moldavia, to take Chilia and Cetatea Alba from the Turks.
Doctor: Finally fate turns in your favor, maybe you’ll be able to break free from Ottoman suzerainity.
Stephen: So I thought, but John Albert suddently attacked Moldavia’s capital, Suceava, his real aims were to replace me with Sigismund, his younger brother. But was unable to take Suceava and eventually retreated. I knew I could not let this unpunished, that’s when I made my strike.
→ In the actual mission, ambush the Polish army led by John Albert at the Cosmin Forest, heavily crippling the Polish army.
Mission 6 Outro:
Doctor: What happened next?
Stephen: You happened, I joined the Venetian - Ottoman war together with Hungary and Wallachia, I defeated the Ottoman army again, I had hope, but as soon as they started the war, they made peace. I am old now, and I don’t think the Christians will ever have a chance against the Ottomans.
Doctor: Those are hard words, your whole life was about driving the Ottomans out of Europe in the name of God.
Stephen: I urged my son Bogdan to not follow in my footsteps and continue to pay tribute to the Ottomans. All I tried has been for nothing, and not because of the Turks, because of the Christians.
Doctor: I am sorry you lost hope, the Champion of Christ gave up on the cause.
Stephen: On my death bed, I am disillusioned, we fight each other more than we fight the Turks, this is why we are where we are.