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Kingdom rankOttomans
Primary culture
Turkish (Levantine)

Capital province
Edirne (149)

Ottoman GovernmentGovernment monarchy.png

State religion

Technology group
AnatolianAnatolian technology group
Ottoman ideas
Traditions.png Traditions:
+5% Discipline
+3 Tolerance of heathens

Core-creation cost.png Millets

−33% Core-creation cost
+1 Max promoted cultures

Manpower recovery speed.png Ghazi

+20% Manpower recovery speed

Cavalry combat ability.png Timariot System

+15% Cavalry combat ability

Cost of reducing war exhaustion.png Autonomous Pashas

−10% Cost of reducing war exhaustion

National tax modifier.png The Law code of Suleiman

+10% National tax modifier

Trade efficiency.png Tulip Period

+10% Trade efficiency

Ship costs.png Found the Imperial School of Naval Engineering

−10% Ship costs

Idea bonus.png Ambitions:

+33% Land force limit modifier

Europa Universalis IV starts on November 11th 1444, the day after the Ottomans Ottomans victory over the Christian alliance at Varna. They begin owning most of Anatolia and the southern Balkans. For new players the early game will likely be focused on consolidating the country's position in those regions. Internally the country is divided between Orthodoxy Orthodox Christians and Sunni Islam Sunni Muslims. Economically they hold the majority of the Constantinople node trade power with very easy access to the rest.

In the Balkans, the important trade center of Constantinople and the region of Morea are held by the declining nation of Byzantium Byzantium. Its vassal Athens Athens, and Albania Albania hold Turkish lands. The Aegean Sea is controlled by Venice Venice, Naxos Naxos, Genoa Genoa, and The Knights The Knights, hindering control of the Constantinople trade node. In the Anatolia region, several Beyliks (Candar Candar, Dulkadir Dulkadir, Ramazan Ramazan and Karaman Karaman) control cored Ottoman territory. Further east, in the Taurus and Caucasus mountains, the hordes of Aq Qoyunlu Aq Qoyunlu and Qara Qoyunlu Qara Qoyunlu control some outlying Ottoman territory, and shield the Ottomans Ottomans from their historical rival the Timurids Timurids. To the south, historical and trade rival the Mamluks Mamluks control a sprawling trade empire that extends into Africa, while the Hedjaz Hedjaz control the holy cities of Medina and Mecca. To the west, the Balkan nations of Wallachia Wallachia, Serbia Serbia, and Bosnia Bosnia are ripe for the taking. Moldavia Moldavia is the only safe nation due to it being a march of Poland Poland which blocks expansion. Further expansion west is also halted by the Austria Austria and Hungary Hungary.

The Ottomans have a unique government type named the Ottoman Sultanate.This government is in many ways synonymous with the royal household, but with a harem feature that ensures that there will never be a lack of heirs for the Ottoman Ruler.

Ottoman government[edit]

The Ottoman Government is a unique government type for the Ottomans that ensures that there will never be a lack of heirs for the Ottoman Ruler, an event that triggers when the current ruler is 30 years and 6 months old let the player choose which heir he wants for the throne, being able to view their monarch stats prior to the choice.

The Ottoman Government has the following benefits:

  • Legitimacy.png +0.25/+0.5/+0.5 Yearly legitimacy
  • Unjustified demands.png -10% Unjustified demands
  • Number of states.png +8 States
  • Autonomy.png 0/0/-0.05 Monthly autonomy change


Main article: Ottoman missions

Practically all of the Ottomans missions revolve around expanding their borders. In the early stages of the game, many of the missions revolve around reclaiming the lands of Anatolia, as well as the iconic mission to conquer the City of the World's Desire: Constantinople or Conquer the Crusader's Last Bastion (Rhodes). Further missions will request the Ottoman Empire to expand and conquer the regions of Balkans, North Africa, Syria, Egypt, Iraq, as well as individual provinces - all to increase trading power in the spice trade and to unite Sunni Islam lands against Christendom.


Main article: Ottoman events

Since the Ottoman Empire spanned over a huge area for many years, and experienced intense reforms and changes in governing an empire never seen before in history, it is no wonder that the Ottomans have many dynamic historical events. Many of those historical events are the aftermath from the expansion and government reforms of the Ottoman Empire - such events can revolve around the relationship between the Ottoman Empire and the trade states of Venice Venice and Genoa Genoa, the left-over Greek OrthodoxyOrthodox Patriarchate, enacting reforms that might not be popular with everyone, or suppressing nationalistic rebels. The dynamic historical events of the Ottomans show that an impressive empire requires impressive decisions be made.


Execute decision.pngAdopt the Devshirme System

By adopting the Devshirme System we have increased the efficiency of our recruitment process considerably.

Potential Requirements
  • Ottomans have not enacted this decision before
  • Ruler's military skill is at least 4
  • Has at least 100 military power

  • LoseMilitary power.png-100 military power
  • Ottomans gain the modifier "Devshirme System" for the rest of the campaign:
    • National manpower modifier.png+10% National manpower modifier

Execute decision.pngAdopt the Provincial Government System

Appointing provincial governors, or 'Beys' can certainly improve administration of taxes and such but with less direct control over our provinces there is also the possibility of ambitious governors spending most of their time caught up in intrigues and internal feuds.

Potential Requirements
  • Ottomans have not enacted this decision before
  • Administrative technology is at least 5
  • Ruler's administrative skill is at least 4
  • Has at least 50 administrative power

  • LoseAdministrative power.png-50 administrative power
  • Ottomans gain the modifier "Provincial Government System" for the rest of the campaign:
    • National tax modifier.png+10% National tax modifier
    • National unrest.png+1 National unrest

Execute decision.pngDisband the Janissaries

In 1622, the 17-year-old Sultan Osman II, decided to curb the Janissary excesses. The year before he had been defeated by the Poles during the 'Moldavian Magnate Wars', which he mainly blamed the cowardice of the Janissaries for. He was also outraged over being 'subject to his own slaves.' Rumors about the Sultan preparing to disband them soon reached the Janissaries who revolted and imprisoned Osman. Shortly after he was strangled to death.

Potential Requirements
  • Has the country modifier "The Janissaries"
  • Has the disaster "Janissary Decadence"

  • Removes the country modifier "The Janissaries"
  • Ends the disaster "Janissary Decadence"

Execute decision.pngMake Constantinople Capital

The glorious city we have recently conquered will make a splendid capital for our nation. Constantinople is the greatest city on earth, and our government would make it so much stronger.

Potential Requirements
  • Ottomans:
    • Own Constantinople (151)
    • Capital is not Constantinople
    • Have not enacted this decision before
  • Is not at war
  • Primary culture is Turkish
  • Follows the Sunni Islam Sunni religion
  • Ruler's administrative skill is at least 3
  • Controls the province Constantinople
  • Owns Edirne (149), Kocaeli (316), Hüdavendigar (317) and Burgas (1764)

  • Gain +1 stability
  • Constantinople:
    • Becomes core
    • Becomes capital
    • Changes culture to Turkish
    • Changes religion to Sunni
    • Changes province capital name to Kostantiniyye
  • If does not have the global flag Constantinople_restored
    • Constantinople:
      • GainsTax Base Icon.png+4 base tax
      • GainsProduction.png+4 production
      • GainsManpower.png+3 province base manpower
    • Sets the global flag constantinople_restored
  • Government rank of Ottomans becomes Empire


The early targets should be Albania Albania (before Venice Venice takes its core here), Byzantium Byzantium (taking Constantinople) and small Turkish beyliks in Anatolia (before Mamluks Mamluks or Qara Qoyunlu Qara Qoyunlu conquer them). These steps do not require coring.

Aq Qoyunlu Aq Qoyunlu owns 1 Ottoman core too and one Syria Syria province which can be released, easily diplomatically vassalized and later feed by Syrian cores from Mamluks (with significantly reduced aggressive expansion). Qara Qoyunlu owns one Ottoman and one Syrian core and should be taken as soon as possible (best if QQ is in some exhaustive war e.g. with Timurids Timurids or Mamluks).

Another early war targets are Trebizond Trebizond before Qara Qoyunlu will vassalize it (Ottomans has mission for it) and Theodoro Theodoro before Crimea Crimea or Genoa Genoa takes it.

After getting these possessions, the major Asian neighboring powers should be already crippled and do not represent a threat. Ottomans can then conquer Serbia Serbia, Bosnia Bosnia, The Knights The Knights, finish Southern Greece and vassalize Wallachia Wallachia (missions for all of them). There is an seductive mission for conquering Caffa but it is advised to pick it only after the Shadow kingdom event happens, otherwise the Emperor will protect Genoa.

A single successful war with Hungary Hungary ending by releasing Croatia Croatia, Transylvania Transylvania or Nitra Nitra may cripple this neighboring power and be a stepping stone to conquer Wien or Prague necessary for Western focus decision. However a strong European ally would be probably required for this war.

Another exhaustive war would be probably with Venice to take its and its vassals Balkan possessions - these are essential otherwise Venice will steal the trade income from Constantinople and Alexandria. Player should be careful and have bigger navy than Venice and its allies together.

Orthodoxy Convert to Orthodox[edit]

Ottomans can convert to Orthodox in several ways:

  • The quickest way occurs prior to annexing any territory by sending a missionary to an Orthodoxy province triggers enough unrest to create a possible rebellion. Ottomans are sufficiently Orthodox to be able to convert by accepting the rebels demands. However, if this is done the Ottomans lose out on the decision to make Constantinople the capital missing 11 development points. The upside is that Constantinople will not need to be converted.
  • A second way to convert and securing the extra 11 development from the make Constantinople the capital decision is by conquering Byzantium Byzantium and at least two of the four nations of Athens Athens and Albania Albania, Theodoro Theodoro, or Trebizond Trebizond. After Constantinople is secured and the decision clicked sending a missionary to any Orthodoxy province with unrest below 0 will create a rebellion that will allow accepting demands to convert to Orthodox. Religious rebels generated in the province of Trebizond have the advantage of being able to force convert Anatolia while completing sieges on provinces. A rebel generated in Edirne or Kirkkilise are the closest to Constantinople and can force convert that province - which otherwise can not be converted until a combination of Patriarch authority.png patriarch authority, an inquisitor and Religious ideas are taken.
  • both methods should be done prior to the annexation of the Anatolian Beyliks as the extra provinces will reduce the percentage of Orthodox.

Note, there are two handicaps to this as reduced Religious unity.pngreligious unity incurs a Corruption.png corruption penalty and initially Orthodox are unable to convert Sunni IslamSunni provinces.

If the Dhimmi estate have low loyalty, revoking the heathen provinces granted to them will spawn zealots of the province's religion. As soon as the game starts, Impose New Religious Tax interaction from the Estate tab can be taken, reducing Dhimmi loyalty to 35. Many Orthodox provinces start out as belonging to the Dhimmi estate, and can be revoked after a year has passed. The Zealots spawned will convert every non-Orthodox province they occupy to OrthodoxyOrthodox if the occupied province is not within a fort's Zone of Control, including Konstantiniyye after Make Constantinople the Capital decision has been taken, if the fort in Edirne is destroyed.. Zealots will not be able to cross the strait to Anatolia as there are almost always AI ships in the Sea of Marmara. They instead will march all the way around the Black Sea until they are defeated in battle by a nation along the way, or arrive back into Ottoman lands. The player can annex Trebizond Trebizond and send a missionary to the province (as outlined above) after granting it to the Dhimmi Estate, then revoke the estate ownership after a year if they wish to force convert Sunni IslamSunni Anatolia prior to switching to Orthodox

Coptic.png Convert to Coptic[edit]

Conversion to Coptic is done fastest by taking the 3 Coptic provinces Van, Yerevan and Nakhchivan from Qara Qoyunlu Qara Qoyunlu. Converting to Coptic removes the unique government type from Ottomans.

However, all Coptic holy sites are easily conquered, so the Ottomans will get the benefit of the five Coptic blessings very early on.

Give those provinces to the Dhimmi estate, and spawn 3 Coptic rebel stacks by revoking those provices a year later after asking making the Dhimmi illoyal first by asking for gold.

Catholicism Convert to Catholic[edit]

  • Conversion to Catholic is possible as the Ottomans. This can be done in an many ways however, the easier ways include securing either a Catholicism province from Bosnia Bosnia, Ragusa Ragusa or waiting for Athens Athens to convert its province and then securing it. However, as the amount of Catholic is small relative to the empire it will take a several years of waiting as a rebel stack forcibly converts provinces.

Note, there are two handicaps to this as reduced Religious unity.pngreligious unity incurs a Corruption.png corruption penalty and initially Catholics are unable to convert Sunni IslamSunni provinces.


Main article: Technology

The Ottomans begin the game in 1444 in the Anatolian technology group Anatolian technology group at level 3 for Administration, Diplomacy and Military with Feudalism embraced. This is the same starting technology level as Western nations. Overview:

  • 0% penalty to technology cost until renaissance appears.
  • Cavalry.png50% Ratio. Cavalry numbers may be up to 50% of a total army size, excluding Artillery.png artillery, before the Insufficient Support penalty is incurred. Same as Western, less than Eastern technology group60%Cavalry.png Eastern or Muslim technology group80%Cavalry.png Muslim.
  • Anatolian technology group Anatolian units: see Anatolian land units. Early game Anatolian technology group Anatolian units (up to military tech 15) are superior to Western by 1 pip. Notably, Janissaries (infantry at military tech 9) have 1 offensive fire pip; the only other tech groups to get fire pips this early are Indian technology groupIndian and Chinese technology groupChinese. Conversely, Anatolian cavalry has no fire pips until tech 18, compared to 10 for Western.

Goals After Early Moves[edit]

As of 1.16 the Muslim Ottomans future goals revolve around 2 decisions: Western Focus and Unify Islam.

Post Decision Goals[edit]

If the Ottomans have completed the 3 listed decisions they are likely the physically largest and most developed nation on 3 continents. At this stage the question becomes how big can the Ottomans grow. Rivals may include Commonwealth Commonwealth, Russia Russia, Great Britain Great Britain, France France, Ming Ming and Spain Spain.

Suggested Early Ideas[edit]

The needs of the Ottomans are fairly diverse and can be approached in a number of ways. The Western Focus achievement can be aided by the judicious use of Offensive for the military bonuses and Influence with Aggressive expansion impact.png aggressive expansion reduction can prevent aggressive expansion points and Coalition.png coalition formation or Diplomatic can be taken to more effectively reduce aggressive expansion by reducing the province war score cost Province warscore cost.png-20%.

Administrative may be recommended as the combination of Core-creation cost.png-25% core reduction cost and Millets Core-creation cost.png-33%.

If the Ottomans choose to go Orthodoxy Orthodox, Coptic.png Coptic, or Catholicism Catholic, Religious ideas may be a good choice as Deus Vult yields the Holy War casus belli making the acquisition of territories east or south of the Ottomans free from the use of diplomatic points. This is especially strong with the Coptic.png Coptic faith as it will yield even more coring cost reduction, and a Casus Belli with nearly all neighbors (among other bonuses). Administrative ideas may be required to defray the administrative point impact so much coring requires. The bonus missionary Missionaries.png+1, missionary strength Missionary strength.png+3 and Missionary strength vs heretics.png+2 will be of great help in maintaining Ottomans Religious unity.png religious unity.


Definitely the Sultan of Rum icon
Definitely the Sultan of Rum
Own and have cores on Rome, Moscow and Constantinople as Ottomans.
Country guides

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East African technology group East African.png Kilwa.png Kilwa
Muslim technology group Muslim.png The Mamluks.png MamluksTunis.png Tunis
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Mesoamerican technology group Mesoamerican.png Maya.png Maya
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