Faction Overview: Milan by Awesome Eagle
Ciao e benvenuto generale! We are extremely glad for your presence General as we have been waiting for you for many years. However with you at the helm, we may now rise to glory! However before we begin signore, I shall give you an overview of our lands, military and current position so that you may better be prepared for our journey.
Comments? Questions? Leave your thoughts in this thread.
We Milanese are Italian born and bred, and thus we claim a sizeable portion for ourselves. However at this time we are confined to the two cities of Milan and Genoa. The capital of our small empire resides in Milan. Milan is situated on near the Alps, the natural separation of Italy and the lands of the uncivilised nations. Our other city is Genoa which Is located near the Mediterranean and thus has a port, machining it important for us to maintain our sea power and trade. Both of our municipalities have been developed as cities and we currently hold no castle.
Unfortunately, this is our current empire but it can quickly be expanded to make it very powerful, not just in Italy, but in Europe. There are several nearby settlements that, if we make haste, we will be able to catch before another nation steals them. However, there are also several threats to our emergence as a regional power. Firstly, there is a threat form our Italian cousins, namely the Venetians, Sicilians and the Papal States. These nations are willing to declare war over land in Italy so it will be beneficial to be prepared for such a move. Another threat also comes from the uncivilised peoples who lie just over the alps and look hungrily for spoils into Italy. We should keep watch on the passages through the alps and be wary for they are cunning.
A nation cannot survive without armed forces. Through many centurys of war we Milanese have developed a formidable army which we may use to conquer our foes and banish them from this world. We Milanese are famous for our crossbowmen and our neighbours rightly fear our proficiency and skill in its use. Our best units can be recruited from castles so the acquisition of one early is important.
Although knowledgeable in its use, our nation hasnít taken to much infantry development and thus we have some basic types that will still hold our battle line well. From our castles we can produce:
- Peasants: Mere peasants armed with simple weapons, are excellent cannon fodder.
- Sergeant Spearmen: Professional warriors drawn from the lower classes. Carry a large shield and a spear and form a solid defensive unit. Useful in defending the flanks from enemy cavalry attacks.
- Armoured Sergeants: Professional warriors drawn from the lower classes and armed with a large shield, a spear and wear mail armour. Very solid defensive unit able to withstand attacks from both cavalry and foot soldiers.
- Dismounted Feudal Knights: Knights that have dismounted and fight on foot. Make excellent heavy infantry.
- Dismounted Men at Arms: Nobility and commoners well equipped in plate armour, swords and shields. These men are tough fighters and are very capable of holding any line and are the elite of Milanese infantry forces.
- Carroccio Standard: The Carroccio is a wagon holding the cityís standard and is defended by an elite group of infantry. The standard acts as a centre point for the army and increases the morale of units nearby. This unit can only be recruited by the addition of Council Chambers to a city.
Whilst not having the skill of our French neighbours in cavalry and horsemanship, we can still field a selection that will be able to protect our flank and attack our opponentsí. Our basic cavalry choices can also be augmented by the addition of a Knights Templar and Hospitaller Knights guilds, which will allow the recruitment of each ones cavalry unit. From our castles we can produce:
- Mounted Sergeants: lesser armed cavalry that ride in the company of the knights. Although not comparable to real knights, they can still perform well against a lesser armed or routed enemy, and unlike elsewhere in Europe use lances.
- Mailed Knights: Basic heavy cavalry, heavy armour and a good charge, able to be used in a close combat role.
- Feudal Knights: Knights that dominate the battle field. Trained as warriors from birth, these men are armed with a heavy lance, strong armour and have a powerful charge.
- Men at Arms: nobility and commoners who band together to produce a powerful unit of heavy cavalry. These men are well protected and have good weapons, have a powerful charge and are difficult to kill.
- Broken Lances: Mercenaries recruitable from city walls, these men are encased in plate armour, and pack a heavy charge. However, they're not as reliable as feudal knights, as they're more concerned about their payday rather than losing their lives for you.
We Milanese have obtained much skill and prowess when it comes to missile troops. We are famed for our ability as crossbowmen and thus have created some units that pack quite a punch. Our missiles are our advantage and they should be used to destroy the enemy from afar with little of our own casualties. From our castles we can produce:
- Peasant Archers: Peasants that have been levied into the army and armed with a hunting bow and a knife. These men should be kept out of hand to hand combat at all costs.
- Peasant Crossbowmen: Peasants equipped with a crossbow and a knife to provide mass missile fire. Unarmoured and should be kept out of hand to hand combat at all times.
- Genoese Crossbowmen: Men equipped in brigandine armour and a large Pavise shield on their back, these men rain death onto the enemy and can be devastating. Although equipped with good armour and swords it is recommended that these men be kept out of hand to hand combat with superior units.
- Mounted Crossbowmen: First used to combat the more proficient mobile missile units of the east, the mounted crossbowmen units use smaller crossbows than the infantry so they pack less of a punch. However their mobility will allow them to flank an enemy unit and fain fire on their unprotected rear thus causing the enemy great casualties. These horsemen are not suited to be used as melee cavalry but may be useful in chasing down routed enemy units.
The Milanese can recruit some able militias to help them keep order and defence in cities around the soon to be expanded empire. They can also be very useful in battle in a supporting role and can be recruited by building a barracks in a city. From our cities we can produce:
- Italian Militia: Armed with a short spear and shield and can be useful in a supporting role.
- Italian Spear Militia: Spear Militias are comprised of experienced troops with some armor and long spears, making them a good defensive unit able to go toe to toe with more expensive units on the battlefield.
- Genoese Crossbow Militia: Militia comprised of wealthy men and equipped with brigandine armour, a Pavise shield and a sword. These men are useful to kill the enemyís troops from afar but shouldn't be used in a melee fight.
- Pike Militia: Modestly trained, these pikemen can hold a defensive position very well. However these men lack armour and will be very vulnerable to enemy missile fire unless accordingly upgraded.
Siege weapons can be built when you construct a Ballista maker in a castle or city. These weapons allow armies with them to immediately assault a settlement without having to wait the regular 2 years to build siege equipment.
- Ballista: A giant crossbow that hurls huge javelins that can take down small walls and piece any armor.
- Catapult: A catapult throws large rocks at walls and troops, does a lot of damage to both.
- Trebuchet Result of the evolution of siege machines, very powerful machine that hurls huge boulders and even throw rotting cows.
Our Current Situation
Whilst we are only a very small nation currently, we may expand quickly to occupy several rebel settlements that claim independence. There are four such targets and if we make haste and act with boldness we may conquer all of them and greatly increase our power, wealth and strength. The first rebel target lies to the north in the Castle stronghold of Bern. Bern will be key in pre-empting any invasion into Italy from the Holy Roman Empire or the French and must be captured as quickly as possible. The castle is well defended so a large army will be required. Several mercenary troops are available in the region that could be of great use in capturing the castle.
The next target is to the East south East of Genoa and is Florence. Whilst only a town currently, there is great potential in Florence for trade and capturing it will net a handsome profit every turn with some development. However we must be quick in this enterprise and capture it before the Holy Roman Empire or the pope takes hold of it. The third target of opportunity lays in the island of Corsica and the castle of Ajaccio. This territory will give us more power over the waters in the Mediterranean and once a port is built will give great profits. The last and final early opportunity for us lays on the Isle of Sardinia and the castle of Cagliari. The acquisition of this territory will generate much trade and will be a very good buffer against any possible Moorish invasion. However Cagliari is also a main target of the Sicilians and we must move very quickly if we are to conquer this valuable prize.
To accomplish our early goals we only have a small army. However we have the funds necessary for a large expansion and this will be essential if we are to capture our goals and survive as a nation. Firstly, in our capital of Milan rests our faction leader Duke Giorgio and his bodyguard, 2 battalions of Italian Spear Militia, 1 battalion of Peasant archers and a squadron of Mailed Knights. In our other city of Genoa rests Count Bernado and his bodyguard, a battalion of Italian Spear Militia and a battalion of Peasant Archers. The final part of our army is acting as a sentry and is watching for a possible invasion over the Alps by the French. This army consists of Cristoforo Rossi and his bodyguard, 2 battalions of Italian Spear Militia and 1 battalion of Peasant Archers. This constitutes our current army and they should be divided up according to their intended targets.
Our naval forces however are quite strong with approximately 4 units of Galleys at sea near Genoa. This fleet allows us to control the seas and protect our trade vital trade lanes. After a couple years however we will need to increase our naval forces as our influence spreads.
Unfortunately, our nation is surrounded by potential enemies and we should prepare for the eventuality of a war on multiple fronts. To prepare, we suggests a dual approach to the problem. Aggressive expansion should be used to increase our power both military and financially in our empire, whilst we should explore the option of an alliance with another major power in the region. A temporary alliance with neighbouring France or the Holy Roman Empire might give us an edge during the early period of our empire building. Eliminating enemy factions one by one is the most prudent option for us and we should aim to avoid a multiple front war that we may not be able to successfully fight.
For our mission to gain a great empire, we will be aided by several loyal agents who have pledged their alligence to our cause. These agents include the Spy Chimenti Bossi, The merchant Lerino Matarrese, the diplomat Frolio Carcano and the Cardinal Evio the Peaceful. Each of these men is willing to die for our cause and will help the expansion of our nation in their each individual way. This is our current situation and some options for very beneficial expansion however in the end it is up to you to decide our path.
We Holy Christians
Since the spreading of Christianity through the late Roman Empire, we Italians and our ancestors have been devout Christians. Since we are Christians we are able to build churches and chapels in our settlements. Not only are do these give a bonus to public order but they also slowly turn the populace of a region to Christianity. Being Christians allows us to take part in a crusade. These are massively beneficial to us as this may allow us to acquire a foothold in the rich Middle East, allowing us unlimited expansion against the Muslim foe. However, with our position in Italy comes conflict with the Pope. The pope is the leader of our faith but it isnít he who should be telling us what our empire should do. As our leader, you may decide as to what to do with him but if war is declared between us and the Papal states, then we may be excommunicated and suffer the wrath of the rest of Christendom.
Milan features greatly in many Mods. The most famous two are the Retrofit Mod and the Mongolphobia Mod. These mods change small aspects of the French by modifying some unit statistics and balancing the campaign.
Thus nobile generale, you have been briefed on our lands, our armies and our current situation. All this information shall come in handy whilst you lead our nation on to Victory!