Daybreak:Kingdom of Weichsel
|System||Centralized Military Aristocracy|
After the rising Dawn Imperium in Eastern Eos defeated the Maldani Confederation, they absorbed some of the clans while driving the others west. Those who left journeyed to the plateaus of Wester Eos (present day Shadom of Chorasmia) and claimed the land to rebuild their nation, which in turn chased out the inhabitants of the region and forced them further west. While historians are not certain where exactly the Amudarian tribes originated from, it is recognized that they traveled to Eastern Hyperion around 150:Imperial as a result of this domino effect, seeking fertile land to rebuild the realm they lost.
Approaching the height of its power, the Imperium of the Inner Sea offered the Amudarian tribes a strip of land along the southern coast of the North Sea in exchange for their fealty. The Amudarians agreed, setting down as a protectorate of the Imperium, paying reasonable yearly tributes to the Emperors in Arcadia in exchange for military aid whenever the barbaric Northmen invaded. It was a win-win arrangement. The influx of Amudarians brought people friendly to the Imperium into a sparse region once allied with Frost Giants and granted the Emperor a buffer state against Northmen raids and invasions. Meanwhile the Amudarians received rich lands to claim as their own and a powerful ally to back them up.
The realm of Amudari was reborn.
Over the course of the next millennium, the Amudarians gradually forsook their past to embrace their new life. Nomadic culture was abandoned as agriculture, its output aided by the Imperium's technique of four-stage crop rotation, replaced herding as the primary source of food. The introduction of new production technologies and goods also brought Imperial language and culture, and by 1167:Imperial Amudari formally abandoned its traditional language in exchange for Imperial. Meanwhile, Amudarian culture became a melting pot between their traditional ways, lingering lifestyles of the locals they absorbed, and influences from Imperium of the Inner Sea, the expanding Grand Republic of Samara, and the Lotharins that dominated northwestern Hyperion.
After Emperor Aurelian I converted to Trinitian and forced the rest of the Imperium to follow, tensions between the pagan Amudari and the Holy Imperium began. As the Cataliyan Rebellion began in the south and drew the Holy Imperium's attend away, the Northmen decided it was time for a new invasion of the continental coast. With their legions spread thin attempting to pacify the south while suppressing religious unrest across the realm, the Holy Imperium sent only token forces to Amudari's aid. Unable to resist the onslaught, King Bazyli died during the Siege of Odra when his citadel was breached, sacked, and burned to the ground.
When all hope seemed lost, House von Drachenlanzen stood up to rally the defenders of the coast. With a military tradition that dates back to the Thousand Days Offensive during the Dragon-Demon War, the contingent of Drachenlanzen cavalry were the only to breakout from and survive the Siege of Odra. By binding nobles and commoners alike into an equal agreement to protect their homeland through the Writ of Universal Conscription, Ferdinand von Drachenlanzen crushed the invading Northmen army during the Battle of Konigsfeld in 61:Faith. It was there, during the victory celebration, when Ferdinand proclaimed the beginning of a new nation. The Kingdom of Weichsel was born, with a promised new capital city of Konigsfeld planned upon the site of glory that renewed their people.
A converted Trinitian, Ferdinand requested Pope Alexander I to bless the new realm. The Pope responded to his piety by traveling north and personally crowning the new king. Ferdinand then took advantage of the situation by carefully maneuvering the Pope into making a denunciation of the Holy Emperor for failing to uphold past promises, and thus voiding previously agreed obligation in return.
The new Kingdom of Weichsel would no longer be a protectorate and tributary of the Holy Imperium of the Inner Sea.
King Ferdinand I's tremendous popularity and his policy of 'faith-hugging' allowed him to slowly convert Weichsel into a predominantly Trinitian nation. By established Trinitian as the official religion of the realm, he discouraged any military expeditions from the Imperium through papal displeasure. After the religious unrest that initially plagued the Imperium began to die down in their core provinces and the threat of invasion renewed itself, the elderly Ferdinand I requested the martial Pope Saint Peters to launch the first Holy War against Cataliya Caliphate in 149:Faith.
Ferdinand I was declared a martyr after his army was brutally crushed by Cataliyan forces that outnumbered him 5:1 during the Battle of Trian Pass, but the bloody war he began would draw Imperial attention south for over a century to come. After two successive Holy Wars not only failed to make gains but lost land to the Caliphate, the Holy Imperium was forced to turn their attention towards the northwest as the Lotharin Rebellion began in 298:Faith.
With the Imperium distracted, Weichsel busied fortifying itself against both the south while driving off periodic invasions from the north. As the Lotharin Rebellion grew into the Rhin-Lotharingie Independence War, Weichsel aligned itself by supplying arms to the rebels, thus establishing the one-time protectorate as a strategic foe of the Holy Imperium. This was further exemplified during the War of Imperial Succession, when Weichsel joined the Holy Imperium's other neighbors in seizing border territories during the chaos. A conflict of interests initially brought Weichsel into de-facto war with the Empire of Rhin-Lotharingie, but negotiations between accomplished statesmen between the two powers yielded a Defensive Military Alliance would dominate Hyperion politics.
(just regional notes for now...)
- Landgraviate of Nordkreuz: Pascal von Moltewitz family's realm on the northwest border.
- Landgraviate of Kostradan
- Landgraviate of Altsteier
- Duchy of Polarstern: Realm of Neithard Mittemeyer von Manteuffel, leader of the Manteuffel clan.
- Duchy of Starigard
- Margraviate of Saale-Holzland: Ariadne von Zimmer-Manteuffel family's realm on the northeastern border.
- Margraviate of Saale-Osteroder
Although the people of Weichsel have long abandoned their nomadic lifestyle, the revival of the military by House von Drachenlanzen gave rebirth to predominance of cavalry. Since then, all Weichsel nobles are legally required to be schooled in horsemanship and the basics of magical combat, as all were eligible for drafting under the Writ of Universal Conscription. Under the threat of yearly raids and periodic invasions from the north, many aristocratic houses even embraced their duty and began dynastic military families. Although tiny compared to its massive neighbors, this military aristocracy tradition allow the Kingdom of Weichsel to easily field the largest percentile of nobles -- and therefore mages -- among its forces.
Weichsel army tactics rely on the Mobility Doctrine, using the superior speed, maneuverability, organization, and logistics of its smaller armies to engage enemies on advantageous grounds. Due to its emphasis on mounted mages supplemented by missile troops, Weichsel prefers to whittle down and destroy its enemies at range while maneuvering over open fields.
The predominant weapon in Weichsel is the swordstaff, created as a compromise between needs against the Northmen who prefer a chaotic, close-quarters melee and the formation-fighting styles of Imperials. Balancing the need between maneuverability and protection, Weichsel troops rely on the "partial plate" armor, a suit of hardened leather reinforced by plate cuirass, spaulders, bracers, skirting, and greaves.
Advantages: highly-mobile multipurpose cavalry, including the fearsome Knights Phantom
Disadvantages: lacks reliable heavy infantry; poor navy
Weichsel Army Units
- Black Eagles (Elite): The King's personal guard battalion, with an extended intelligence network that serve as the Kingdom's primary espionage and counter-espionage organization.
- Knights Phantom (Elite): Elite aerial cavalry established prior to the War of Imperial Succession, organized in six independent companies -- Schwarz Lanzenreiters (gryphon). These mage-knights are equipped with varying weapons and partial plate. They ride conjured Phantom Steeds into battle, although many wrap the spell around their armored gryphon or fast pegasi mounts instead.
- Noble Reiters (Feudal): Drafted nobles led by professional officers, these light cavalry are mages who serve as mobile artillery and lack martial training for close combat.
- Weichsel Cavalry (Feudal): Noble spellswords supplemented by thrice their number in mounted professional landsknecht. These cavalry wear partial plate and are equipped with both polearms and missile weapons (predominantly swordstaves and composite bows), wearing down enemies with mixed volleys of arrows and spellfire before charging in.
- Swordstaff Infantry (Militia): Line infantry equipped with swordstaff polearms, heavy shields, and partial plate. Founded upon a core of professional Landsknecht soldiers augmented by mage officers, these units multiple fourfold during war times by absorbing thrice their number in militia recruits.
- Arbalest Infantry (Militia): Missile infantry equipped with the powerful arbalest crossbow, pavise shields, sharpened entrenching tools, and partial plate. These units utilize the same organization as swordstaff infantry.
Weichsel naval doctrine is exactly the opposite of their army. With its inferior continental ships, Weichsel maritimes forces could ill afford to engage the Northmen's superior Iceskimmers. Instead it practices the defensive Fleet-in-Being doctrine, reinforcing coastal fortifications as needed.
- Timberclad Galley: A flat-bottomed, slow, river ship. The timberclad galley is more of a barge armored with thick wooden planks to serve as floating battery. Mostly used to defend river mouths.
- Seaskimmer: Light galley reliant on its mage crew and magically-assisted propulsion.