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Nation in Europa:  Kingdom of Rhodellia

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Factbook link:

Newsroom link:   

Culture: The base "Rhodellian Culture" is a mix between American, German, British, and Native American cultures. Besides that, there are also influences from Cadia (from Warhammer 40k), Sparta, Australia, and the Collectivistic cultures of East Asia. There are other Eurth cultures present as ethnic minorities, such as Derthaler, Kirvinska, Lysian (from Shffahkia), and Fulgistani. Rhodellia is a very diverse and cosmopolitan society.

Climate: Climate is generally mild and temperate.

Preferred Location: Aurelia

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Key

  • Red Line - Rough suggestion for national boundaries
  • Red Dot - Capital City (Gottesberg)
  • Orange Dot - Port City
  • Yellow Dot - Major City

Timeline of Important events (W.I.P):

As Derthalen's Rhodellian Colonies

  • 1482 - Martin Waldseemüller, a Derthaler explorer, sets sail to find an alternative westward route to Thalassa and the Orient (which does not involve going through the Keelpijp, Ygros Sea, Verde Sea, or Argic Ocean). He never finds this rumoured passage. Instead, he "discovers" some "unclaimed" land overseas. He thinks that Derthalen should colonise it before another country does. He calls the land "Rhodellia" after his expedition's main sponsors: the House of Rödel.
  • 1483 - Waldseemüller's contacts in Derthalen begin a large colonisation drive. They promote Rhodellia as a "Working Man's Paradise" and a "Land of Opportunity", free from the corruption, nepotism, and monopolies of Derthalen's established orders. Thousands of Derthaler colonists - almost all of them being freemen, urban burghers, and modest minor nobles - are shipped in from Argis. The original four "Coastal Colonies" of Friedrichstadt, Janbourg, Rabesheim, and Grauhagen are founded by members of the House of Rödel.
  • 1483 to 1500 - Colonists encounter Native Rhodellian tribes for the first time. Many are friendly, and are willing to trade and make alliances. Others identify the colonists as "pale demons", ancient monsters that will bring war and plague upon the land. With the help of their allies, the Colonies engage in numerous skirmishes and wars against their neighbours. The Colonies militarise, and expand deeper inland; thousands of natives are displaced in the process.
    • Derthaler victories in King Penrod's War (1483 - 1489), The Raven Forest War (1484 - 1487), and The Final Stand of the Greyhawks (1483 - 1486) establish a firm Derthaler hegemony over the coastal regions surrounding the Colonies. 
    • In the process, the colonists adopt the "Skulking Way of War" (essentially asymmetric warfare) from their native allies and enemies. It becomes a pillar for colonial military doctrine.
  • 1484 - The first gunsmiths and water-powered powdermills are set up. The knowledge and expertise to manufacture rifled arquebuses is imported from Derthalen. Rifles would quickly become one of the Colonies' most popular and lucrative exports to other countries besides Derthalen. However, their fragility and prohibitive costs prevented rifles from catching on among ordinary colonists of modest means.  
  • 1485 - Derthaler colonists are surprised to discover the existence of developed Native Rhodellian civilisations. These natives had cities, paved roads, calendars, horses, metallurgy, and even gunpowder. However, the Colonies were still decades ahead in technology. The Colonies made a point of maintaining strong communications and trade relations with them. This was facilitated by two large rivers dubbed the "Westfluss" (Western River) and "Ostfluss" (Eastern River), allowing for cheap and easy transit of goods and people.
  • 16th century - Derthaler pioneers move away from the coastal colonies to settle "unclaimed" territories far away from the coast. They primarily use the Westfluss and Ostfluss to transport people, equipment, and supplies deeper inland.
    • The pioneers would discover greater sources of fur pelts, expanding the Rhodellian fur trade by several magnitudes.
    • The Derthaler and their allies would end up displacing tens of thousands of Native Rhodellian people in even more conflicts.  At the very least, they now dominated the fur trade. Now that they had more goods to sell than just weapons and armour, the Colonies would start engaging in more international trade. Derthaler merchants operated in the Yellow Empire and in a few Thalassan states up to the mid-15th century. Unfortunately for them, the Yellow Empire imploded, and the aforementioned Thalassan states adopted isolationist policies.
  • 1542 to 1571 - Derthaler pioneers eventually win the Great Plains War (1542 - 1550) and Lajos' Rebellion (1563 - 1571). The local regional hegemon, the Great Plains Confederacy, collapsed in the process; its lands and resources were quickly scooped up by opportunistic pioneers. A new Derthaler hegemony would asserted over this flat area pioneers dubbed "The Great Plains".
  • 1600s - High-circulation gazettes, newspapers, and magazines start appearing across the Colonies.
  • 1608 - Derthaler colonists run out of "unclaimed" land to settle. They are now surrounded on all sides (bar the ocean) by Native Rhodellian countries with established borders. Inland settlements break off from the Coast to become the "Inland Colonies" of Westfalen and Ostmarken.
  • 1610 - The New Rhodellian Army is created to combat the threat of Kimsantinsuyu. The original Bank of Rhodellia is founded to help fund it. Today, May 5 is celebrated as "Armed Forces Today"
  • 1611 - The Rhodellian Military Academy is founded.
  • 1616 to 1617 - The "First Valley War" against Kimsantinsuyu ends in a decisive Derthaler victory. Kimsantinsuyu - which originally consisted of the Westfluss and Ostfluss river valleys - is thrust into a (most likely Derthaler-engineered) civil war for many years.
    • The Battle of the Bottleneck (1617) sees Rhodellian troops experiment with trenches, landmines, and early flamethrowers.
    • The new Colonies of Grünthal and Oberthal are founded in annexed Kimsantinsuyu territories. 
    • The Kirvinska troops that fought alongside the Derthaler (approximately 14,000 of which survived the entire war) were allowed to settle in the Colony of Grünthal. As of 2019, the Kirvinska community in Rhodellia numbers at roughly 500,000 individuals.
  • 1620s - Rhodellia's own Agricultural Revolution begins.

As the Rhodellian Commonwealth

  • 1643 - The Colonies formalise their political and economic union as the "Rhodellian Commonwealth". Today, Rhodellians celebrate February 11 as "Commonwealth Day".
  • 1644 - The Rhodellian Naval Academy is founded.
  • 1650 to 1654 - The fall of Kimsantinsuyu - a major power in the Rhodellia region - rings alarm bells. During the "First Coalition War", several Native Rhodellian countries band together to destroy the Commonwealth before it reaches critical mass. The Commonwealth wins, seizing more land, and cementing its position.
  • Mid-17th century - International trade is on the rise again. Clear trade relations are established with the Sultanate of Fulgiyan. Meanwhile, more attempts are made to trade with the Empire of the Setting Sun and Kipan. Both attempts end in failure. The Empire of Setting Sun is still isolationist. Variota is the only foreign countries allowed to trade with Kipan. 
  • 1671 - The Rhodellian Army and Navy adopt the plug bayonet. Today, Rhodellians celebrate July 2 as "Bayonet Day". 
  • 1676 to 1681 - The "Second Coalition War" (First Coalition War 2: Electric Boogaloo) is fought. The Commonwealth wins again, seizing even more land.
  • 1692 to 1699 - The "Samosetian Deluge" is fought between The Commonwealth and a neighbouring empire led by Samoset The Conqueror. Samoset actually almost succeeds where earlier Native Rhodellian coalitions failed. However, he (along with most of his soldiers) die when his camp is ravaged by disease. As Winter approached, the Derthaler sent a Fulgiyan merchant to distribute smallpox-infected blankets to the invading army. The Commonwealth launches a counter-offensive the following Spring, conquering more land from Samoset's decapitated and crumbling empire.
  • 1694 - The Rhodellian military martial art of "Bajonettkampf" (bayonet-fighting) is born. In its original manifestation, it mixed techniques from Derthaler martial arts, Native Rhodellian martial arts, Yellow Empire "kung fu", and some Thalassan Bujutsu. The invention of Bajonettkampf would kickstart the Rhodellian "Golden Age of Martial Arts", which would last until the late 19th century.
  • 1700s - The Enlightenment spreads to the Commonwealth.
  • 1701 - The Rhodellian Military University and Rhodellian Naval University are founded. Meanwhile, socket bayonets are introduced to both the Rhodellian Army and Navy.
  • 1702  - The Rhodellian Army establishes its first "Jäger" units.
  • 1706 - Rhodellian Army Jägers see widespread action in the "Fifth Valley War". Rhodellian historians credit them with employing "early ghillie suits" to evade detection from enemy forces.
  • 1725 to 1727 - The Commonwealth wins the "Third Coalition War", grabbing some more land.
  • 1736 - The Commonwealth finally ends Kimsantinsuyu in a coup de grâce called the "Seventh Valley War". Almost all of Kimsantinsuyu's former lands in 1617 have been swallowed by the Colonies of Grünthal and Oberthal.
  • 1750 to 1753 - The "Fourth Coalition War" results in the Commonwealth getting some more land. They've now reached a third major river, which is dubbed the "Nordfluss" (Northern River). 
  • 1760s - Rhodellia starts its own Industrial Revolution 
  • 1770 - The "Workers' Revolution" succeeds, resulting in far-reaching government reforms. Property ownership was abolished as a requirement for voting in Parliamentary elections. All male Commonwealth citizens that were at least 18 years of age were granted the right to vote. This angered female citizens, who began their own "Suffragette" movement.
  • 1775 - All female citizens of the Commonwealth aged 18 and over were granted the right to vote, so long as they become eligible for the draft.
  • 1775 to 1786 - The "Victory Canal" is constructed, creating a large, artificial waterway connecting the Westfluss and Ostfluss rivers. 
  • 1794 to 1799 - The "War of The Grand Alliance" is fought between the Commonwealth and a "Grand Alliance" of Native Rhodellian nations. Commonwealth troops hold the line in a massive "turtling" strategy. The Alliance throws wave after wave of troops at Commonwealth star forts situated along the Nordfluss river, bankrupting itself in the process. Commonwealth troops later cross the river in a large counter-offensive, winning the war (along with lots of land). Rhodellian troops also began using rocket artillery for the first time. The Commonwealth now owns the entire "Rhodellia" region that was originally outlined in the 15th century. Citizens of the Commonwealth begin referring to themselves as "Rhodellian" instead of "Derthaler" or "Native Rhodellian".
  • First half of the 19th century - The Commonwealth intervenes in the "Eustacian Wars", joining Shffahkia in battle against Kirvina. Against Derthalen's expectations, the Commonwealth is defeated. It is then forced to withdraw from the conflict.
  • 1828 - The first Rhodellian railroad opens for business.
  • 1833 - The electrical telegraph starts catching on in the Commonwealth.
  • 1859 - A large oil well is discovered under the lowlands of Grünthal, sparking an "Oil Rush" across the Commonwealth.

As the (first) Kingdom of Rhodellia

  • 1871 - The Rhodellian Commonwealth unites into the "Kingdom of Rhodellia." It remains a member state of The Holy Empire of Derthalen.
  • 1901 to 1903 - The "Nordwalde Revolutionary War" teaches Rhodellian troops what happens when you mix trench warfare with barbed wire and machine guns. Rhodellia won, getting a bloody nose in the process.
    • The Rhodellian military used the conflict as an opportunity to pioneer modern stormtrooper and sniper tactics. However, they would not fully blossom until the First Anéantic War.
    • The conflict also saw the widespread use of the modern "Flammenwerfer" (flamethrower) by Rhodellian combat engineers. 
  • 1914 to 1919 - The Kingdom and its allies fight the "First Anéantic War" against a second "Grand Alliance" consisting of nearly all of their neighbours. Millions would die on either side.
    • 1919 - Rhodellia loses, signing an armistice with the Grand Alliance. The "Accursed Treaty" would punish Rhodellia for everything it ever did since the 15th century. It resulted in the abolition of the Rhodellian monarchy, forced independence from Derthalen, near-total Demilitarisation, and heavy war reparations for every "Derthaler war of colonial conquest" since 1483. To add insult to injury, Rhodellia would be reverted to its approximate borders as of the Seventh Valley War in 1736. The 1920s are considered to be the "lowest" point in Rhodellian history. 

As the Republic of Rhodellia

  • 1919 - The Kingdom of Rhodellia is abolished, becoming a Republic instead. A Socialist uprising takes place in the capital city of Gottesberg, intent on overthrowing the weak government. However, Rhodellian troops and "Frei Korps" intervene just in time to crush the rebellion.
  • 1920s - Rhodellia clandestinely begins a process of "Remilitarisation", using "every trick in the book" to circumvent the Accursed Treaty.
  • 1927 - An economic crash hits Rhodellia.
  • 1928 - The Rhodellian royal family secretly returns from exile.
  • 1930 -  Crown Prince Frederick von Rödel is elected Chancellor of Rhodellia under an alias. Under the platform of "Making Rhodellia Great Again", his political party secures an overwhelming majority in Parliament. He begins a series of programmes, public works, and financial reforms to facilitate economic recovery following the 1927 Market Crash.
  • 1931 - Construction begins on the Autobahn.
  • 1933 - Rhodellia opens its first high-speed rail network.
  • 1934 - Construction begins on underground metro systems in several major cities.
  • 1935 - Frederick is re-elected as Chancellor. In his inauguration speech, he speaks out against the former Grand Alliance, calling them "inhuman" for the draconian terms imposed by the Accursed Treaty. He called the Treaty was unfair; it held the current generations of Rhodellians responsible for the sins of their distant ancestors.
  • 1936 - In clear violation of the Accursed Treaty, Frederick starts accelerating Remilitarisation. Rhodellian factories begin pumping out ammunition, weapons, tanks, aircraft, and warships in record numbers.
  • 1936 to 1939 - Rhodellia re-integrates its "stolen" territories under "Anschluß" and "Appeasement". 
  • 1937 - The Heer establishes its first Fallschirmjäger (paratrooper) units.
  • 1939 to 1948 - People begin to realise that "Appeasement" isn't working. The Grand Alliance renews itself. Its members collectively begin declaring war on the Kingdom of Rhodellia and its allies (including Shffahkia), starting the "Second Anéantic War". It would become the largest conflict Rhodellia would ever fight, and also its most important.
  • 1948 - Rhodellia and its allies win. They begin occupying enemy countries.

As the (second) Kingdom of Rhodellia

  • 1948 - Frederick unveils his true identity during a victory speech. He states that his emergency powers will end, and that - in keeping up Rhodellian traditions of democracy - he will stand down in time for the 1950 Election Season. As he exits the podium, the crowd starts singing the old national anthem of the kingdom (which has been banned since 1919).
  • 1950 - General Elections begin. The Kingdom of Rhodellia is restored. Frederick resigns as Chancellor to reign as King of Rhodellia. 
  • 1951 - Rhodellia begins the "Frederick Plan", injecting money into war-torn countries to hasten reconstruction efforts. Friendships are forged with what used to be bitter enemies. Sprawling metropolises rise from piles of rubble. Rhodellian occupations end as the countries recover to the point of self-sufficiency.
  • 1950s to 1970s - A "Cold War" begins against Shffahkia. Rhodellia isn't in any state to fight a Third Anéantic War, so it wages proxy wars instead. However, Rhodellian troops are called to deploy into one of these wars. They get their first experience of jungle warfare (and it isn't pretty). The conflict sees the copious use of napalm, helicopters, Wagner, and Creedence Clearwater Revival.
  • 1960s to Ongoing - The "Nordwalde Troubles" begins as a draft riot, but - due to the Rhodellian government's mishandling of the situation - gradually escalates into a full-blown Separatist insurgency.
  • Late 1960s to 1970s - The "Kung Fu Craze" hits Rhodellia. Wuxia flicks from the Madrian area of Fulgistan’s Wulumuqi region started flood Rhodellian cinemas, reviving nationwide interest in martial arts.
  • 1975 - The "Spartan Protocol" is founded to increase the number of Rhodellian adults that are qualified for conscription should the draft be reactivated in the future, succeeding previous government programmes oriented towards the same the goal.
  • 1978 to 1981 - Rhodellian troops are deployed to help repel the First South Mark Invasion of Derthalen.
  • 1978 to 2001 - The "Physical Readiness Protocol" is established to encourage fitness and physical activity in the Rhodellian youth.
  • 1979 - Rhodellia opens its first Maglev line.
  • 1980 - Nordwalde Separatists storm a Rhodellian government building, capturing it before the majority of the staff could fetch their rifles from the locker room. The terrorists threaten to start executing hostages if certain political prisoners are not released within the next 24 hours. The Heer responds "We don't negotiate with terrorists", deploying special forces to storm the building and eliminate every terrorist inside. They succeed without a hitch. The siege was broadcasted on national television, bringing "Spezialkräfte" into Rhodellia's popular imagination.
  • 1990s - The Rhodellian anime community is born.
  • 1981 to 2011 - Rhodellian troops are deployed to help Derthalen in the Third Pacification Crusade.
  • 2002 - The Physical Readiness Protocol is renamed the "Citizen Athlete Initiative" and put under the Spartan Protocol. The combat-oriented department of the Spartan Protocol is reorganised as the "Citizen Warrior Initiative".
  • 2004 - The Murder Cube materialises in the mortal realm.
  • 2000s - Social media, console gaming, and PC gaming are catching like a wildfire. Broadband internet has already practically replaced Dial-up internet.
  • Late 2000s - Smartphones begin rising in popularity. Anime is starting to find a mainstream audience. It helps a lot that fibre optic broadband is being introduced to most areas.
  • Early 2010s to Ongoing - Historians are beginning to identify a "The Meme Revolution". Rhodellia's youth are becoming increasingly globalised through the internet. Pop culture is now also being influenced by happenings across the globe. Another side effect of this is that more Rhodellians are becoming fluent in foreign languages to better-communicate with international communities on the internet. Meanwhile, VR is becoming more than just a "gimmick" as more gamers (and even the Military) are buying into it.
  • 2012 - Rhodellia is now one of the world's biggest consumers of anime.
  • 2013 to 2016 - Rhodellian troops are deployed to help Derthalen in the Great Barbarian Invasion of Meinitzmark.
  • 2018 - “Thank You” - a charity concert organised by the Rhodellian Veterans’ Association to raise funds for veterans with amputations, mental trauma, and other complications that came as a result of their service to the kingdom - raises over $118,000,000 in donations.
Edited by Rhodellia
14/02/2019 - Removed most examples of techwanking at other players' requests. Stroheim will have to wait.
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In regards to location:

Instead of Aurelia, I would highly suggest eastern Argis. German and British-inspired culture fits there better, with nations such as Seylos and Great Burlington nearby and with Derthalen being closer, it makes more sense history-wise and universe-wise. Portugal, which is presumably from which you drew inspiration, was arguably in a better position than Derthalen in our universe, at the very least due to the fractured nature of the world. This is also one of the reasons why we strongly advise people not to build history and such attached to specific places, as it might require you to rewrite it when you're finally placed. That being said, I would imagine that it's quite easy to change 'find a Southern route to Thalassa to finding a Northern route to Thalassa around Argis or a Northern route to Europa or some such' without it having too much influence on the rest of the story.

American culture, in so far as you can call them having one pre-relatively modern times (sorry Americans!), could fit anywhere and Native American culture somewhat the same, natives tend to exist everywhere after all. This might mean changing up how certain foreign groups ended up in your nation but that shouldn't be too hard to do. Might have to scrap the Lysians but in my opinion, there are worse things than that. The area above Astriedan, for example, would carry the same climate as the section you aimed at, so climate wouldn't be an issue.

In regards to technology and history:

Here's where we run into major issues. Not entirely sure who or if you planned these things out with someone but there are a bunch of issues. Like with industrialization, the relatively divided nature of the universe means that technology tends to come slower, not earlier. 

1485: The whole second civilisation existing there at a level that would mean atleast some form of self-exploration and attempts to trade seems weird. With the natives having the advantage of local supply and a better situation (presumably) than natives IRL, it seems odd that there's thousands of people being imported, setting up places, disturbing areas without them noticing and just putting a stop to it, as a civilization at that level would certainly understand the 'need for greed', so to say, to keep advancing, developing, expanding. This isn't a real big deal, to be honest, as there's still a chance of it happening (no one is everywhere, after all) but like I said, it seemed a bit weird.

The Battle of the Bottleneck (1617): I would love a clarification on the use of trenches. Are we talking about an early form of trench warfare here, were they merely intended to slow down the enemy, etc. Genuine flamethrowers only come into existence in 1901 IRL as far as I could find. Before that, unwieldy machines by the Chinese and the lost-to-time Greek Fire existed but would have, as far as I see it, not a lot of practical use and/or edges on the verge of alternate tech (seeing as historians and such cannot agree on a definitive formula). If you wanted, you could have machines such as those the Chinese made but other than that, you won't be able to have the modern type of flamethrower.

1620s: Same with the trenches, I'd like some clarification on how far the Agricultural Revolution went. Depending on how far it goes, it might be a bit too early.

1694: What is the so-called 'Bajonettkampff' based on? Does it involve actual bayonets or is it merely called that?

1700s: I'm going to be honest and say that I have very little idea of when the Enlightenment came into existence on Eurth and if one could specify one particular date on it. I'm going to recommend keeping it in the late 1700s.

1701: I would push back on the introduction of socket bayonets. Rhodellia, like many other places on Eurth and keeping in mind that the flow of time is a bit slower here, isn't going to be a center of military advancement at the same rate of real life.

1760: The industrial revolution. As I said on Discord, the circumstances surrounding the industrial revolution IRL mostly evolves around nations with extensive empires in a world where most of civilisation was centered in one place. That's not the case on Eurth, hence there's going to be severe difficulties with calling anything an industrial revolution that early. That's not to say that you can't have small industries industrialize or have a revolution later on as you catch up to the rest of the world, but it's not going to happen at the same rate or magnitude on Eurth.

1775 to 1786: Could you show an image about where the Victory Canal would be? Depending on the location, it could basically be a 50 kilometer canal or a 250 kilometer canal.

1794 to 1799:  I see the mention of rocket artillery. Again, Eurth moves slower, etc. Pushing back the date is the smart thing to do. That or design some great story on how it came to be, which will be difficult in my opinion as there's very little that would make your circumstances somewhat the same to, say, the Indians who first used them in modern times.

1841: Again, recurring theme, a bit too much on the early side of things. I get it, we all want the newest thing the fastest but fractured Eurth, no single power, etc. simply slows things down. One or two things may be acceptable, but it's becoming a bit of a list. And just like pretty much 90% of all nations, including myself, we're not superpowers or some such that are able to claim everything right away.

To be honest (and I'm going to probably sound like a dick for it), at this point I sort of stopped in regards to writing this stuff down. Essentially, there are many glaring points where you're becoming close to or are tech wanking. Things like military technology, military tactics and really most of 'modern' technology came about at a different pace under different circumstances than real life. I think you should pretty much rewrite almost everything after the Rhodellian Commonwealth bit with atleast one RP mod judging over it. Because as it stands, I can't see your nation fit into the universe as it now stands. I clarified RP mod because unlike the RP mentors, we can enforce toning down or removing things that go too far in case you refuse to do so (and trust me, we've had people like that) and at the same time, give you more protection in the end when it has all been turned/changed into something that is acceptable within the canon of the region.

 

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Cheers for the feedback! I'll be happy to answer any questions you might have over the next few days. I'll also give some justifications for stuff, like technological advancements and their chronology.

On 2/10/2019 at 12:57 PM, Variota said:

1485: The whole second civilisation existing there at a level that would mean atleast some form of self-exploration and attempts to trade seems weird. With the natives having the advantage of local supply and a better situation (presumably) than natives IRL, it seems odd that there's thousands of people being imported, setting up places, disturbing areas without them noticing and just putting a stop to it

Many native tribes specifically set out to destroy the Colonies very early on. Their warriors attacked hunters, shepherds, and farmers . They also launched raids on settlements. What stopped them from succeeding was that:

  1. Natives also had other natives to deal with. Just because someone new showed up on the block, doesn't mean that everyone will immediately forget their rivalries and unite together. Quite a few native tribes aligned themselves with the Derthaler. Rather than threats, these tribes saw the Derthaler as an opportunity to rise in power over bigger, more established tribes. Attacking a Colony also meant going to war with all of that Colony's allies. That might weaken your tribe enough for a rival to finish it off. "Divide and rule" was used by European colonists to great effect in the Americas and in Africa. Derthaler colonial governments consciously practised the same political strategy.
  2. This above was also the case for larger native civilisations. They had a balance of power to maintain with other large civilisations. Going to war with the Colonies not only entailed going to war with Derthalen, but also with whatever local rival lends support to the Colonies just to shaft you. Either ignoring or trading with the Derthhaler would have looked like the best option at the time.
  3. The colonists had copious amounts of weapons. Most colonists carried weapons. Most people armed themselves with axes, spears, crossbows, and guns; compared to swords and self-bows, they were easier to use with less training. Just like with the European colonisation of North America (according to Blackwater founder Erik Prince), there were mercenaries around as stand-ins for Derthalen's Imperial Army. There were also some knights (nigh-unkillable murder machines when in full plate armour) among the colonists.

 

On 2/10/2019 at 12:57 PM, Variota said:

The Battle of the Bottleneck (1617): I would love a clarification on the use of trenches.

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The primary inspiration for the Battle of the Bottleneck is Japan's Battle of Nagashino (1575), which pitched the combined forces of Oda Nobunaga and Tokugawa Ieyasu against Takeda Katsuyori. It saw the devastating use of stockades and rotating volleys of gunfire by Oda-Tokugawa arquebusiers against repeated Takeda assaults. In the Battle of the Bottleneck, the New Rhodellian Army's musketeers used a similar tactic against the army of Kimsantinsuyu.

The Derthaler defensive line consisted of multiple layers. Each was filled with a block of pikemen or rank of musketeers, depending on the situation. The first few layers consisted of trenches that Derthaler musketeers could shoot from. Behind them would be more ranks of musketeers standing above-ground, firing over the first few ranks' heads. This arrangement also allowed the New Rhodellian Army's direct-fire artillery to shoot at the enemy as well.

The trenches also served other purposes.

The colonists knew what cover was and how to use it. In this Age of Gunpowder and Military Revolution (as described by historians Michael Roberts and Geoffrey Parker), the Derthaler built "trace italienne" bastion forts back home. Colonists built their own forts in the same style. The best way to get troops within assaulting distance to these forts without getting mauled by defensive artillery was to dig parallel and zigzag trenches towards the fortifications. By this point, the concept of using trenches as cover wasn't all that groundbreaking. At the Battle of the Bottleneck, the terrain was relatively flat farmland with only a few groves of trees to use for lumber. For cover, they got out shovels and dug trenches. The soil was used to fill gabions that above-ground musketeers and artillery crews could use as their own cover. The trenches protected the troops from incoming artillery in the battle's opening stage; cannonballs bounced over trenches. During the skirmishing stage of the battle, they could duck for cover when an enemy volley was incoming, and pop out to return fire while the enemy was reloading. This would minimise damage received while maximising damage dealt in return.

In the melee stage of the battle, the trenches also benefited the Derthaler. They served as chokepoints, funnelling numerically-superior enemy troops into better-armed and better-armoured Derthaler pikemen and halberdiers. The confines of the trenches meant that there was no way to manoeuvre around the reach of these weapons; the only option for infiltrating enemies was to walk into pointy sticks and get stabbed to death. Enemy troops exhausted themselves running gauntlets of obstacles (including ditches) before reaching the Derthaler lines. This made knocking down or hacking through sturdy, deeply-rooted stockades very hard to do. Throughout all of this, there are always plenty of Derthaler musketeers shooting at them. The best way of not getting shot by Derthaler musketeers (who were very precise in their marksmanship and quick to reload) was jumping into a trench through an existing breach in the stockades. This created very favourable meatgrinders for the Derthaler.

The Derthaler colonists were no strangers to concealment either. The enemy commander was confident that his numerical superiority would make up for any technological disparities. The Derthaler commander knew this. The trenches helped to hide the true number of soldiers the New Rhodellian Army brought with it, giving a false impression of weakness. Lacking the telescopes of the Derthaler, the Kimsantinsuyu commander could only see a weak force compensating with field fortifications. This coaxed the enemy commander into underestimating his opposition and acting far less cautiously than he ought to have.  And so, the Kimsantinsuyu army essentially went all-in, and lost the battle because of that blunder.

On 2/10/2019 at 12:57 PM, Variota said:

If you wanted, you could have machines such as those the Chinese made but other than that, you won't be able to have the modern type of flamethrower.

The flamethrowers used in the Battle of the Bottleneck were of the Chinese variety. It's stated in Rhodellia's main history factbook that they were originally picked up either from the former Yellow Empire or the Orient. Because the Colonies were still trying to reverse-engineer the weapons and their ammunition as of 1617, it's also stated that the Colonies had issues manufacturing them; it wasn't economical at the time. That's why the New Rhodellian Army only had a handful of experimental flamethrowers available for field-testing. On their own, the few flamethrowers present wouldn't have caused more than a hundred or so casualties before their limited supply of fuel ran out. Their biggest contribution to the battle was the terrifying psychological effect it had on Kimsantinsuyu troops who had never seen someone spit literal fire before; it demoralised them into a large-scale rout. The enemy commander surrendered shortly after.

The Commonwealth's decisive victory at the battle would have presented a powerful case for colonial engineers and scientists to continue developing flamethrower technology. The cylindrical containers, bellows, and hoses were easy enough to make. The primary issue facing development was figuring how to economically produce large quantities of flamethrower fuel. The lack of petroleum was problematic. By 1617, colonial farmers in Rhodellia had already encountered small oil wells by accident. However, the Commonwealth wouldn't discover petroleum in any sizeable quantities until the 1860s Oil Rush. Before that, the Rhodellian military mostly depended on small quantities of imported oil originating from what is now the Greater Fulgistan area.

Flamethrowers would have seen limited military use until the second half of the 19th century. I can see the Army using them defensively in sieges. They'd have no place in naval warfare in the Age of Sail; they're too much of a fire hazard. The facilities developing and manufacturing flamethrowers and flamethrower fuel would have been state-run.

On 2/10/2019 at 12:57 PM, Variota said:

1620s: Same with the trenches, I'd like some clarification on how far the Agricultural Revolution went.

The Agricultural Revolution was a long, gradual process lasting from the 1620s to the late 19th century. 

Across most of Europe during the Middle Ages, land was either owned by The Church, feudal lords, yeomen, or by the village community. In that last case, it was called "common land" because everyone was free to use it however they please. In the Early Modern Era, that began to change. Church land was starting to be confiscated; this happened in England, with King Henry VIII's Dissolution of the Monasteries. Feudalism was dying as countries became increasingly centralised. Common land was being fenced off by landowners in a process known as "Enclosure", which allowed them to more efficiently cultivate the land. Enclosure was fiercely resisted by peasants in many areas, as they depended on Common land for grazing and firewood.

In the Colonies' case... the colonial branch of the Ecclesiarchy never managed to grow into a large landowner; it never could exert the same power it did back in Derthalen. The colonial nobility mostly lived modest lives, usually owning no more than a humble manor home with a few servants. No powerful nobles were allowed to rise to prominence through land ownership. "Enclosure" was a thing since the very start of Derthaler colonisaton; peasants were not allowed by Derthalen's Imperial law to migrate to the Colonies. Just like during the British colonisation of Australia, there was a lot of "first-come-first-served" land-grabbing involved, with colonists and pioneers rushing to fence off unclaimed (by Derthaler) land before others could beat them to it.

By the 1620s, almost all of the arable land in the Colonies was enclosed and under private ownership (though there were exceptions). Around this time, a large "internal market" was growing around Rhodellia. Great Britain had to invest lots of money in roads and canals to facilitate the transit of goods, due to the undeveloped state of its road networks at the time. Meanwhile, the foundations for Rhodellia's road networks were laid as early as the Mid-16th century; the Colonies had their own standardised system of military roads and highways, explicitly stealing the idea from the Kimsantinsuyu and the Aroman Empire. These roads were still maintained by the time of the First Valley War (1616 - 1617), and were commonly used by travelling merchants. The Colonies also didn't have to invest loads of money into building new canals either, because it already had two massive river networks running through them: The Westfluss and Ostfluss connected the Coastal Colonies to the Inland Colonies, and their tributary and distributary rivers offered access to even more inland settlements. It was a lot cheaper to transport goods over long distances via water than it was via land. This greatly benefited the United States of America, which had natural waterways like the Mississippi river network connecting agricultural areas to almost every part of the country. It also helped that each Colony had education laws like the American Pilgrims: the common person was supposed to be literate in order to understand and facilitate the Imperial Truth. They also had access to vocational schools, apprenticeships, and universities; ideas like four-course crop rotation, composting, and new windmills could be spread and understood very quickly. And so, farmers were very inclined to innovate in order to stay competitive.

From the 18th century onwards, the Rhodellian Agricultural Revolution roughly follows the British Agricultural Revolution as far as technology (like seed drills and artificial fertilisers) is concerned, except with more corn and potatoes as staple crops. A lot of Native Rhodellian farming techniques were also adopted by farmers. This includes terraced farming, which was picked up from Kimsantinsuyu (based on the RL Inca Empire) after the First Valley War; terraced farming allowed farmers to cultivate hills and highland.

Rhodellia's agricultural revolution essentially had a big head start thanks to the local geography, the logistical needs of military campaigns, Derthaler culture, and native peoples who already had their own sophisticated means of agriculture. It was arguably in a better position to have an Agricultural Revolution than real-life Britain.

On 2/10/2019 at 12:57 PM, Variota said:

 1694: What is the so-called 'Bajonettkampff' based on? Does it involve actual bayonets or is it merely called that?

I'll be explaining it in better detail in an upcoming Culture factbook, but here's what I have so far:

Just like the name implies, Bajonettkampf specialises in the use of bayonets. It's heavily inspired by Krav Maga: it pick-and-mixes moves and techniques from fighting styles across the world to form an efficient, practical martial art for realistic scenarios. Techniques and philosophies rise and fall out of favour depending on a lot of factors; this leads to a constant state of evolution.

Within the Kingdom, there are thousands of dojo-like martial arts schools solely dedicated to teaching bayonet-fighting, with hundreds of distinct "schools" or "styles" to choose from. Rhodellia's martial arts culture primarily evolved from its historical cultural exchanges with the Yellow Empire (and its successor states) and the Thalassan continent. It also evolved from historical Derthaler (HEMA) and Native Rhodellian martial arts, which did not die out in the Age of Gunpowder; historical martial arts instructors made sure to write everything down and publish their work, just to carry on their legacies.

Rhodellian bayonet-fighting is split into two main categories: "Military" and "Non-Military".

The first and original category is "Military" Bajonettkampf. Following the philosophy of real-life Krav Maga, it designed to be extremely efficient: practical in real-world combat scenarios and focused entirely on killing the enemy. Though it has many off-shoots, the government only recognises two official style of Military Bajonettkampf, and both of them are developed and regulated by the Wehrmacht's "Bayonet-fighting Commission". The first style is taught to conscripts when they enter National Service and volunteers when they re-enlist. The second style (which incorporates more advanced techniques that can't be mastered in a matter of months) is taught to special forces operators.

The second and most diverse category is "Non-Military" Bajonettkampf. Only a minority of "Non-Military" bayonet-fighting styles are optimised to kill. Most Non-Military styles deliberately miss the entire point of the martial art: their purposes range from self-defence to competition sports. Different fighters have their own preferred ways of doing things, so here you will find a lot of variation in philosophy and technique. All Rhodellian schools from Primary to Secondary are required to teach Bajonettkampf to their students, but exactly how and what they're taught is dependent on the instructors they choose to hire. Students' fighting abilities are examined and graded each year by a panel of judges working for the Department of Defence. This affects a school's overall rating, same as any academic subject.

Rhodellian bayonet-fighting would have evolved a lot over time. Before the age of machine guns, Military Bajonettkampf would have been oriented either towards winning skirmishes or clashes between massed infantry formations. In the age of trench warfare, Military Bajonettkampf would have been oriented towards knife-fighting in the tight confines of trenches and bunkers. After the Kung Fu Craze of the 1970s, loads of Non-Military Bajonettkampf schools would cash in the craze by incorporating philosophies and techniques we'd associate with RL East Asian martial arts (particularly those from China and Japan). 

On 2/10/2019 at 12:57 PM, Variota said:

1700s: I'm going to be honest and say that I have very little idea of when the Enlightenment came into existence on Eurth and if one could specify one particular date on it. I'm going to recommend keeping it in the late 1700s.

According to my University lecturers, the real-life Enlightenment began in the early 17th century (during the Scientific Revolution) and ended in 1789 (the start of the French Revolution). The 17th century is when you had philosophers like John Locke, whose ideas of liberty would go on to influence American Revolutionary thinking in the 1770s.  

According to the "Timeline of major events on Eurth"  ... Eurth's Age of Renaissance takes place between 1300 and 1600. Eurth's Age of Political Revolutions takes place between 1750 and 1850. It follows practically the same timeframe as real-life Earth. From this, it can be inferred that Eurth's Age of Enlightenment occurred roughly at the same time as Eurth's.

Like most Rhodellians today, Derthaler colonists followed the ambitious, rational, and scientific-minded Imperial Truth. Just like how the ancient Jews had to be literate in order to comprehend the Torah and Judaism, the Derthaler had to be educated and literate in order to understand and facilitate the Imperial Truth. By the time the Colonies were founded in 1483, the Imperial Truth was practically as old as Christianity itself. Rationality, scientific thought, and progress were already deeply-ingrained in Derthaler culture. Native Rhodellians assimilating into the Colonies were gradually converted by the Ecclesiarchy to embody the same ideals. A "Scientific Revolution" like the one Europe had in real life would have been "business as normal" for the colonists, who were already naturally inclined towards innovation and science. Scientific practice would already have been professionalised and institutionalised for a long time. By the 17th century, the Colonies would already have been in a good position to embrace the Enlightenment.

I put the start of Rhodellia's embracement of Enlightenment in the 1700s century for a reason. The Enlightenment was born from newer interpretations of Christian theology, which were of course thought up by Christian philosophers. Those ideas would have had to make their way to the Rhodellian Commonwealth, be translated into Derthaler language, and finally undergo a secular rethinking to be compatible with Derthaler atheism. Overall, this process should have been completed by the 1710s or 1720s. Rebooted Enlightenment ideas of liberty, freedom, and democracy would have resonated very well with colonists. The Enlightenment should have been fully embraced the entire Commonwealth by the 1740s or 1750s, just in time for the designated Age of Political Revolutions.

Edited by Rhodellia

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