Hussite Wars (9 players)
Diplomacy in the heart of Europe, amidst 15th century religious struggle.
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Variant Parameters (Version: 1.0 / Code: 1.0.14):

Special rules/information:

Fleets can interact only with provinces which have a SC lying directly on a river. Fleets move from one such province to another in one move. Fleets cannot convoy.

A fleet can move from Frankfurt to Magdeburg or Warschau but not from Magdeburg to Warschau via off-map connection to sea. It is not possible to use this off-map connection from Posen, Potsdam or Berlin. These are the only exceptions to the rule that a fleet can freely move to any SC that is directly connected via river to it.

This variant is build anywhere.

Background:

Following the execution of Czech Church reformer John Hus on July 6, 1415 in Constance, a revolutionary resentment grew among the ranks of his followers, Hussites, who demanded a complete overhaul of the deeply corrupted Catholic Church. Hostilities between Hussites and Catholics became an everyday occurence. Without any peacemaking intervention from the top, as the always indecisive and uncommitted Bohemian king Wenceslaus IV took no action, this societal rift was quickly heading towards a violent resolution. The escalation came on July 30, 1419, when radical Hussites led by a priest Jan Želivský stormed the New Town Hall of Prague and threw several Catholic officials from its windows. Upon hearing these shocking news, Wenceslaus IV was hit by a stroke and died. This so-called first Defenestration of Prague therefore kickstarted the Hussite Wars, a decades-long conflict that plunged the mighty Kingdom of Bohemia to chaos and international isolation without achieving a clear victory for any of the sides.

Notes:

The variant starts in 1421, a year after Hussites succesfully repelled the first anti-Hussite crusade and developed a strong position in Bohemia itself. Hussites are already divided into three opposing factions, radical Taborites and Orebites and moderate Praguers, even though these various sects were still largely cooperating in furthering the Hussite goals at that point in time. Catholic Landfrieden represent the anti-Hussite elements in the kingdom which were dominating in the minor Lands of the Bohemian Crown as Moravia, Silesia and Lusatia as well as western and northern Bohemia. Their control of Pilsen at the start simulates its vital strategic importance and shifts the diplomatic and military balance in the region. Hungary is led by king Sigismund, Holy Roman Emperor, brother of late Wenceslaus and the most serious claimant to the vacant Bohemian throne. The Kingdom of Poland supports the Lithuanian Grand Duke Vytautas, a postulated king of Hussites (albeit only from the year 1422) in whose military aid they believe, and his Bohemian regent Sigismund Korybut. The neighbouring German states are represented by the Margraviate of Brandenburg, Saxony and Bavaria, all eager to crush the heretic Hussites.

The province names are all in German to add a little coherent historical feel. Other possible languages like English or Czech don’t translate some names so their usage would result in some disruptive elements.

In order to avoid having multiple countries starting with the same letter, Poland and Brandenburg are called by their full English names.

The usage of fleets is completely ahistorical but the idea of having a unit that can only move through nodes on a grid seemed worth investigating.