- +10% National tax modifier
- +10% Light ship combat ability
- +15% Global trade power
- +0.3 Yearly republican tradition
- +25% Fort defense
- −1 National unrest
- −10% Idea cost
- +10% Production efficiency
- −0.5 Interest per annum
- −10% Ship cost
- +25% Naval force limit modifier
Form German Nation
Germany does not exist.
If the country is AI-controlled then it:
If the country does not have custom ideas
The emperor of the HRE:
Hamburg has many advantages that allow the potential for it to become a major power; including its trading bonuses as a Hanseatic Trade port, naval ideas, its position near the edge of the Holy Roman Empire and its access to the New World.
It is one of the 8 starting free cities in the Holy Roman Empire. This means the Emperor will normally defend it from attack by other empire members, as well as those from outside. Free cities also have a development bonus that allows it to grow rapidly. The City of Cities achievement is quite doable with a Free City. Free City status is lost if the nation grows to more than one province. In the early game, it is usually best to maintain these benefits and grow the city significantly before expanding. If this is done after the Renaissance triggers, growth can also be used to greatly accelerate adaptation long before it makes its way there from Italy. Since the Austria Expansion, it is important to keep an eye on Burgher Estate influence. It will be high to start due to the estate's high land share, Free City status, and high trade power. Growing past 30 development will bump it 10 points higher still, and it can easily surpass 100 and initiate an estate disaster if one grants too many privileges and diets, and/or does not confiscate some Burgher land.
As a Free City with both an estuary and an entrepot, Hamburg starts with considerable trade power. Unfortunately, as a member of Lubeck's trade league it shares half of this. Unless the emperor is weak, it is advisable to immediately leave the league as it is not needed for protection and seriously hampers your trade income.
Free City status can be maintained if the player vassalizes a neighbor in a war and then grows the vassal by making claims, transferring them to the vassal, and pressing claims in wars. Just be sure to only use one vassal, as it will be difficult for Hamburg's single province to maintain the loyalty of two expanding vassals. Care must always be taken to not expand within the empire too quickly, especially by annexing nations (eliminating a prince usually draws the Emperor's ire and brings penalties). Expanding up into Denmark is a good play, supporting Sweden's independence to weaken it and gain an ally. Note that this alliance is not likely to last once Sjælland is taken by Hamburg (or its vassal), as Sweden will covet it and is likely to become a rival.
By this time Hamburg will likely have to expand itself and lose Free City status, and can diplomatically annex its vassal.
Hamburg can use it's naval and trade strengths and ocean access to become a Colonial power using the exploration ideas. It first needs trade node access to the New World. The easiest is through the North Sea trade node and its access to Canada. Taking Norway's Bergenhus should be a priority if this is the desired strategy. The first New World provinces to come within colonizing range are in the Amazon Delta. There is typically enough time to set up colonial nations from there to the Caribbean, Eastern America and finally Canada before anyone cuts you off. The player can then try for a trade port or two in the Ivory Coast node and on to Asia. In this way, Hamburg is a good pick to get the Market Control achievement. An extensive trade network is also necessary to get the Bunte Kuh achievement.