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- Yearly army tradition
- Aggressive expansion impact
- National tax modifier
- Stability cost modifier
- Morale of armies
- Yearly army tradition decay
- Infantry combat ability
National manpower modifier
- Recruitment time
- Tolerance of heretics
Brandenburg starts with only three provinces, and they aren’t especially awesome ones – landlocked, lots of borders to protect, many potential enemies. Eventually, Brandenburg can become Prussia – that mighty German state that dominated northern Europe for the last half of EU4’s time frame. It will take some work to get there, but remember that most of Brandenburg’s neighbors have all the same weaknesses and few of its strengths.
Brandenburg starts with both a casus belli on the Teutonic Order (over control of Neumark) and an available mission to form an alliance with them. The choice of which opening to take can lead to varied play-throughs; the land grab will make Brandenburg immediately stronger, but the Teutonic Order can be a powerful ally against Poland or Pommerania.
- Main article: Prussian missions
Brandenburg shares many of its missions with Prussia.
- Main article: Brandenburg-Prussian events
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Brandenburg starts in a unique situation early on. It is surrounded by many nations, including Bohemia, Saxony, Pomerania, Altmark, Mecklenburg, Anhalt, Thuringia-(Vassal of Saxony), Luneburg, and the Teutonic Order. Early on, Brandenburg needs a strong alliance to survive and to expand. There are 4 choices,
- Austria: Austria starts as the leader of the HRE, has a large army, and thus is very powerful. However, it gets into many wars with France, and refusing the join Austria's war effort means a loss of 25 prestige points. Also, you will be forced to return conquered lands to their owners should you take over a HRE member state.
- Bohemia: As an elector of the HRE, joining Bohemia can grant a chance for Brandenburg to claim the throne of the HRE. But Bohemia tends to vote for itself, so don't ally with Bohemia if all you want is a pocket vote. But Bohemia has a large army, and you can easily get them to join in wars against Poland and Lithuania should you decide to expand eastward.
- Poland: An odd choice, but a useful one. If you decide to wage war for Neumark, then Poland can conquer the Teutonic Order quickly and allow you to nab your land back. It also provides a large army that your nation will need to conquer many of Brandenburg's enemies. If you just need men to assist in war, Poland isn't too bad early on.
- Teutonic Order: While the Order has Neumark, they can be very useful as their military is quite competent and able to hold its own ground. Also, the Teutonic Order has the lands needed to form Prussia, something a player should take note of. If you aren't interested in forming Prussia and want strong soldiers to fight weaker HRE states, the Teutonic Order can help once both nations are linked up.
Alternatively, you can go for an extremely aggressive expansionism. Ally with Bohemia and whichever minor German states that you can (don't bother with the penalty in Diplomatic Power). Next step is forging a claim on Pomerania, which you will use to wage a war on them as soon as they find themselves on a weak alliance. DOW them, beat them and vassalize them. Annex some 20 years later for sea access and better economy.
Another way to become a European Power in the Middle Game is to Ally with a large nation, Forge claims on small states in which Brandenburg shares a border with (Such as Altmark, Anhalt, Luneburg, & Mecklenburg) & Vassalize a few, Or just simply conquer a few. While waiting around 10–20 years every time this happens, you can effectively start taking small states that can't defend themselves. After you become powerful enough you can secure some land southwards to try to form Germany, or go Eastward into Teutonic Order & Poland to form Prussia. After becoming a pretty big power, You should focus on either: 1.Economy 2.Relations 3.Army 4.Navy 1. Economy: If you focus on Economy you can increase your nation's Wealth, giving your nation More Armies, navies, Advisors, & More options. 2. Relations: If you look around you will probably see a nation you would have trouble with such as Austria, Try to find nations who could help you. 3. Armies: A Strong Army = Dominance over Europe. Always keep a stronger Army than your opponent. 4. Navies: If you play strategically, you will have a chance to Colonize the Americas, If you seek Colonization, Go for Diplomacy Tech & Ideas, & Have a good Navy to get you across the Atlantic.
As you see the Brandenburgian lands in 1444, you can notice you have 'Reconquest' Casus Belli upon Teoutonic Order. Quickly ally with Austria, Poland, and Bohemia. Then declare a war on Teutonic Order. Take Neumark. After that, select the 'Pommeranian Succession' mission. Declare a war against Pommerania.(Make sure that you call all of your allies.) Move your army to Hinterpommern, and while your allies are crushing enemy forces, split army into half and move it to Stettin.(If you only take one out of three Pommern provinces, you may not be able to vassalize them.) In the peace offer, take Hinterpommern, and vassalize them. Fabricate a claim on Danzig, then sell Hinterpommern to Pommerania. Take Danzig from the Teutonic Order. Fabricate claim on Warmia, or Ostpreussen. Once again, sell Danzig to Pommerania. As you take Danzig, Poland will become hostile toward you, and break alliance. Take Warmia, then eventually vassalize Teutonic Order. (Don't core the Teotonic Provinces you took.) Return the lands to Teutonic Order. Then, focus on your relationship with your allies. Annex Teutonic Order, and now you have every lands required for Prussia. As you get into 1500s, Protestant will spread through Europe. Change your religion into Protestant(or Reformed).