Crusader Kings 2: a new high! (Part 1)

I recently concluded another campaign in Crusader Kings 2 and this time I did better than my previous best score and my previous campaign with the largest realm.

CK2 25Mar17_1

CK2 25Mar17_2

CK2 25Mar17_3

With a score of 178,253, it easily beat the highest benchmark of 100,000 by the House of Capet. There were 24 rulers, all male (easily explained by choice of succession laws) with King Mernix II the Magnaminous having the longest rule (50 years) and Emperor Somerled the Great having the highest individual score (18,037).

At the end of it, I was Emperor of Alba, Emperor of Hispania, King of Scotland and King of Mauretania. There were many more kingdoms I could have created but chose not to (e.g. Wales, Ireland, Portucale, Arabia, Greece, Anatolia, Cyprus) to avoid adverse consequences emanating from succession laws. I was liege to King of Andalusia, Castille, England, Galacia, Leon, Lithuania, Syria and 20+ dukes!

As soon as I could affect the succession law, I switched to Tanistry. From the outset, I had been grooming all dynasty members in Diplomacy so that it didn't matter much who had the highest number of votes. Of course that meant the rulers' Stewardship was not great and so I tried to get spouses that were great in that trait and sometimes I had to seek divorce to do that. This problem mostly disappeared the moment I became an emperor and much less so when holding 2 emperor titles.

Tanistry works very well as long as there is no secondary title of the same rank as the primary title e.g. the highest rank is King and all other titles are below that rank. This succession law ensures that your dynasty is always in control of your realm and thus greatly increases the chance of the game not ending (unless you are completely swept away by rebellion or foreign powers).

However, once there are titles that are of equal rank to your primary title, then there is a high chance of your realm splitting because, from my experience, the electors tend to nominate different heirs for these titles. So either you then switch to another succession law or make sure your primary title is the only highest ranked title by not creating equally ranked titles or destroying them.

For example, I created Kingdom of Ireland just to vassalise all independent earls within my de jure realm and then destroyed the title immediately after vassalisation so that I was king of only 1 realm i.e. Scotland. Yes, I suffered a penalty of -40 in relationship to all vassals within that de jure realm for 10 years (or until my death. whichever earlier) but this was partially negated by high diplomacy and Noble Custom technology. It also helped that vassals like Tanistry succession law.

Incidentally, in terms of technology, I prioritised Military Organisation, Castle, Improved Keep, Legalism (just enough to get max centralisation) and Noble Custom. The last one was super useful to substantially offset the penalty of high crown authority. In addition, most vassals also liked Tanistry (and Elective Monarchy).

However, once I decided to hold 2 empire titles (Alba and Hispania), I switched to Elective Monarchy to prevent the realm from splitting. One thing that I should had done earlier was to actively seek opportunities to replace my vassals with my kinsman so to increase the chance of a dynasty member elected as heir. "Gifts" were sometimes needed to sway electors to my choice and once a while I created new dukes to increase the votes for my chosen heir. Diplomatic skills of the nominee and my ruler greatly affected the votes.

I usually sent away kinsman without specialisation in diplomacy trait. Initially, I married them off to faraway kingdoms. Later, I married them off with most powerful female rulers available.
2 Responses
  1. Ban Says:

    Congrats! But you didn't tell them your threat level!


  2. Jaded Jeremy Says:

    Ban,
    This is only Part 1 :)