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Primary culture
Javanese (Malay)

Capital province
Surabaya (628)

Despotic MonarchyGovernment monarchy.png

State religion

Technology group
ChineseChinese technology group
Javan ideas
Traditions.png Traditions:
−1% Prestige decay
+2 Tolerance of heathens

Religious unity.png Candi Shrines

+20% Religious unity

Institution spread.png Indianization

+10% Institution spread

Missionary strength.png Dharmasastra

+2% Missionary strength

Merchants.png Pan-Asian Trade

+1 Merchant
+10% Trade steering

Goods produced modifier.png Bi-Yearly Harvest

+10% Goods produced modifier

Ship costs.png Modernized Ship-Building techniques

−10% Ship cost

Trade efficiency.png Terracotta Banking System

+10% Trade efficiency

Idea bonus.png Ambition:

−20% Naval maintenance modifier

Majapahit is a medium-sized nation located in the eastern part of the island of Java, in Indonesia. Historically, the Majapahit Empire, once in control of large parts of Indonesia, was in its final decline by 1444, but, under player control, the empire can be returned once again to prominence.



 Form Malaya

Unify all Malayan provinces in the region under one strong ruler.

Potential requirements

Playing with normal or historical nations

  Malaya does not exist.

The country:

If the country is AI-controlled, then it:


The country:


The country:

  • changes to   Malaya.
  • gains  25 prestige.
  • gets a permanent claim on the areas:
    • Kutai, Brunei, Kalimantan, Aceh, Riau, Batak, Minangkabau, Lampung, Malaya, and Malacca.
  • gets the modifier “Increased Centralization” for 10 years with the following effects:
    •   −0.05 Monthly autonomy change,
    •   +1 National unrest.

If the country:

  • is a member of the Holy Roman Empire but not an elector or the emperor
    • then all its provinces are removed from the HRE.
  • is a duchy
    • then it becomes a   kingdom.


Majapahit begins the game in 1444 as a   Hindu Despotic Monarchy. As one of the few Hindu nations in the Far East, Majapahit provides a unique perspective on the Indonesian starting area. This is supplemented by Majapahit's relatively strong start; Majapahit is, without question, an important regional power in 1444. Additionally, its position allows it to fabricate claims on a number of weaker neighbours. Majapahit's ideas gives them some important benefits, particularly to Trade and Religious Unity.

Majapahit's main competition in the area will likely be the nations of   Ayutthaya,   Malacca and   Pasai. However, many smaller powers such as   Brunei and   Khmer may influence the development of the area, as well.

Opening MovesEdit

Unlike most nations with starting navies, it is recommended that the player retains the initial Cogs provided at game start, as these are essential for continued expansion in the area. The player's initial Merchants cannot be sent to useful nodes at game start, so Collecting in the Moluccas and Steering in the Philippines will have to suffice. A Merchant should be moved from the Moluccas to Canton as soon as the node comes into Trade Range, to steer to the Philippines. Later in the game, moving Majapahit's Trade Port to the Malacca node will likely be the best option.

Most Majapahit players will find that securing their home island of Java is an essential first step. To this end, the nation of   Sunda, who controls the western half of the island, is the best initial target; they also share a culture and religion with Majapahit, and control a Centre of Trade in the Moluccas. Setting Sunda as a rival will likely unlock a mission to conquer their territory, though it is recommended that some claims be fabricated as well. Full annexation of Sunda is recommended as, aside from the previously listed reasons, they control provinces needed to form   Malaya later in the game.

Once Sunda is destroyed, the player's route of progress is quite narrow; unless the player wishes to declare a No CB war, the only provinces that can be claimed by Majapahit are those owned by the micronations of   Makassar and   Luwu. These are the player's natural next targets; Makassar owns the second (and final) Centre of Trade in the Moluccas, and Luwu's province of Palopo (2715) shares a sea zone with provinces belonging to both   Kutai and   Brunei, allowing claims to be forged in these nations as well. The minor nation of   Buton can also be captured at this time and may be made a vassal if the player wishes, as their single province provides no new avenues of expansion. At this point, the player will have control of both Java and Sulawesi.

From this position, the Majapahit player can now conquer the island of Borneo and the nations upon it, Brunei and Kutai. In the case that either nation has obtained an ally (which is unlikely), the player may wish to ally with one Bornean nation in order to defeat the other. Brunei is slightly more difficult to defeat, and Kutai is Hindu, so Kutai is usually the appropriate choice to attack first. In general, neither nation should be particularly difficult to deal with; even annexation of Brunei's   Sunni land is not necessarily problematic due to Majapahit's bonuses to Tolerance of Heathens. If the player wishes they also may annex the small nation of   Sulu that appears in the area around 1450.

Once Borneo is under the player's control, it is now time to consolidate the nation and consider how to proceed.

The Mid-GameEdit

A reasonable mid-game goal for any Majapahit player is to attempt to form Malaya. Though the player will already control the necessary four provinces on Java, total control of two of the other three major regions (Sumatra, Borneo and Malaya Peninsula) is necessary, including several provinces that are currently uncolonized. For this reason, among others, the Exploration idea group is strongly recommended as the player's first choice for idea group. In particular, colonization of at least one province is required in order to fabricate claims on the nations in Sumatra and the Malayan Peninsula, as none of the initial provinces in Java or Borneo share a sea zone with these areas.

Once the player's first Colonist is unlocked, there are two roughly equivalent options for colonization that will provide the most overall benefit. Firstly, the province of Pontianak (640), on Borneo, is 13 development and will allow claims to be forged on   Malacca and   Siak as well as help fulfill the requirements towards officially controlling Borneo. Secondly, the province of Palembang (622), on Sumatra, is 10 development, allows claims on Malacca, Siak and Pasai, and will count towards controlling Sumatra as well as providing a safe province to land troops before invasion.

Before deciding to invade, the player should consider the political situation in Sumatra and Malaya. Malacca, Pasai or even one of the minor nations may have risen to control large sections of this area, and as such may be able to compete with Majapahit militarily. Any alliance with Ayutthaya or other mainland nations may also result in considerable difficulty. If the player feels they can intervene in the area without being defeated, then an attempt should be made to gain naval superiority, as the strait of Malacca can, with proper planning, be successfully blockaded in order to trap enemy armies.

In the case that the player does not feel sufficiently powerful to take on the nations in this area, the player may continue to colonize Indonesia in order to build Majapahit's economy while waiting for an opportunity. Alternatively, the player may choose to colonize the Lesser Sunda Islands area (the islands east of Java), finish controlling Sulawesi, or even start in the Philippines with Manilia (656). Even a colonial nation in Australia can be formed if the player wishes.

When the time is right to invade, it is recommended that of the two remaining regions (Sumatra or Malaya Peninsula) is focused on. This is because forming Malaya will grant permanent claims on the remaining uncontrolled territories.

The Late GameEdit

Majapahit should now own most of Indonesia, perhaps excluding a few remaining Animist island nations such as   Ternate or   Tidore. The player should continue to colonize the local islands, not just for their rich Trade Goods, but also to prevent European colonizers from doing the same.

If and when the Ming dynasty falls, it can be a good idea to launch an invasion into the mainland by first colonizing Taiwan. Not only does this provide Trade Power in upstream Trade Nodes, but southern China is far enough away from Indonesia that the player can acquire Aggressive Expansion in both regions without it leading to a coalition.


Due to colonization being necessary to form Malaya, as well as the number of rich uncolonized islands in the area, the Exploration and Expansion idea groups come very highly recommended for Majapahit players. Once in the late-game, Colonial Nations in Australia or perhaps in a Random New World can be quite profitable for Majapahit as well.

Majapahit's idea set has, somewhat bizarrely, bonuses to both Tolerance/Religious Unity, normally associated with Humanist ideas, as well as Missionary Strength, which is associated with Religious ideas. This makes either idea group an option to deal with religious pressure, which may be severe as Majapahit is largely isolated as a Hindu nation in the Far East.

Quality, Maritime, or Naval Ideas can assist the player in building a strong navy. As well, the three idea groups that offer technology discounts (Administrative, Diplomatic and Aristocratic/Plutocratic) can be valuable.

If the player wishes to play a Majapahit Republic, they can choose Aristocratic and Influence as their third and fourth idea groups, forming an Oligarchic Republic upon taking the associated decision. This can be useful as the player's deity choice from being Hindu can be changed at each election, making it very easy to select a deity depending on circumstance.


Form the nation of Malaya.
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