Serbia

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Kingdom rankSerbia
Serbia.png
Primary culture
Serbian (South Slavic)

Capital province
Branicevo (4176)

Government
Feudal Monarchy

State religion
OrthodoxOrthodox.png

Technology group
EasternEastern technology group
Serbian ideas
Traditions.png Traditions:
+15% Manpower recovery speed
+15% Reinforce speed

National unrest.png Code of Laws

−1 National unrest

Stability cost modifier.png Bastion of Orthodoxy

−10% Stability cost modifier

Cavalry cost.png Home of the Hussars

−10% Cavalry cost

Cavalry combat ability.png Alemannic Guard

+15% Cavalry combat ability

Production efficiency.png Gold Mines

+10% Production efficiency

Mercenary maintenance.png Mercenary Armies

−15% Mercenary maintenance

Morale of armies.png Balkan Hajduks

+10% Morale of armies

Idea bonus.png Ambition:

+10% Infantry combat ability
For the area, see Serbia (area).

Serbia is a minor power located in the heart of the Balkans. Though it is severely threatened by the Ottomans and Venice, it's a strongest Balkan minor at the game start. It is bordered to the north by Flag of Hungary Hungary, the South by Flag of Albania Albania, to the West by Flag of Bosnia Bosnia and Flag of Ragusa Ragusa, and to the East by the Flag of Ottomans Ottomans. Kosovo is one of the handful gold-producing provinces in Europe.

Decisions[edit]

Execute decision.pngMove Capital to Belgrade


Belgrade occupies a key defensive and economic point in the Balkans and has in the past served as the capital of Serbia. We should make this great city our capital once again and restore it to the glorious city it once was!


 
Potential requirements

The country:

  • is Flag of Serbia Serbia.
  • does not have Nándorfehérvár (4239) as capital.
  • has not enacted this decision before.
Allow

Flag of Serbia Serbia:

  • owns core province Nándorfehérvár (4239).
  • has at least 1 Icon stability.png stability.
  • has at least 50 Administrative power.png administrative power.

Nándorfehérvár (4239) is Orthodox and Serbian-cultured.


Effects

Flag of Serbia Serbia:

  • loses 50 Administrative power.png administrative power.
  • moves its capital to Nándorfehérvár (4239).

Nándorfehérvár (4239):

  • changes its capital name to Beograd.
  • gains Tax Base Icon.png1 base tax.
  • gains Production.png1 base production.

Strategy[edit]

Serbia starts in a precarious position in the Balkans, but can be considered the strongest of the Balkan minors, due to high income from the gold producing province of Kosovo. However, Serbia shares a border with the voracious Ottoman Empire, which holds many provinces of Orthodox faith. Its religion makes it slightly more difficult to ally with Catholic nations

Early moves[edit]

The toughest part in playing Serbia is early game because of its expansion limitations and danger from various and more powerful nations. Attacking Albania and annexing Lezhë (Lješ) might be possible without repercussions, but given Flag of Venice Venice and Ottomans both border and have a core on Lezhë, this will significantly increase the chance of getting declared on by either the Ottomans, or Venice. Additionally, either nation is likely to declare on Albania early on and annex them quickly. Some bordering provinces of interest are Travunia, Bosna, Visoki, Hum (Bosnia), Skopje (Ottomans), and Srem (Hungary), since they already have Serbian culture and Orthodox faith (except for Hum, which is Catholic).

Flag of Ragusa Ragusa would normally be the first thought for expansions due to being the center of Ragusa trade node, but starts guaranteed by the Ottomans, who will also probably send a warning very soon after the start of the game, keeping Serbia from conquering Ragusa directly in early game. Even so, it can help to have a claim on Ragusa so that, in the event the Ottomans get into a very taxing war, they may not honor their guarantee (or get into a war with their allies, and the player may conclude separate peace and annex Ragusa without Ottomans directly interfering).

Bosnia is another excellent target for early expansion and should be fully annexed to prevent other neighbors taking that land, but it would be wise to wait until Serbia can establish protective alliances. The aggressive expansion caused by fully annexing (Catholic) Bosnia would make allying other Catholic countries much more difficult. Due to several of Bosnia's provinces being Catholic, rebels are likely to spawn sooner or later.

The Ottomans are an existential threat to the player in the early game and should be attacked as soon as an opportunity presents itself that has the Ottomans distracted in a war with low manpower and troop numbers, and 2–3 bigger allies willing to join in against them. Due to a slow build-up of favors with its allies, this is likely to be 20–30 years in the game, by which time the Ottomans will often have established themselves in Anatolia, reclaiming all their cores.

If Venice happens to be severely weakened (for example, by a war against the Ottomans), they would also present an excellent early expansion opportunity (Dalmatia and perhaps Durazzo and Corfu), provided that the player can fabricate a claim on them.

First alliances should be sought with the Ottomans' rivals (likely to include Hungary, Flag of Austria Austria, Flag of Poland Poland and Flag of Lithuania Lithuania), to prevent early Ottoman aggression. An alliance with Poland can be great in the long term, especially if they enter in personal union with Lithuania. Allying Austria also gives player some flexibility in dealing with bordering countries and can facilitate joining the HRE (if desired). Hungary, although very helpful against the Ottomans as a third ally, will usually rival with Poland, so the player will have difficulties building alliances with all three great powers. Note that allying just one, or sometimes even two of these powers, will not be enough to take fight to the Ottoman side.

Serbia faces trouble being Orthodox in diplomatic dealings. Improving relations from day one, as well as sending gifts to potential allies and hiring a diplomatic reputation advisor, might be necessary to secure an alliance before the Ottoman invasion. Serbian success after gaining principal allies and the Serbian cultural lands depends highly on the opportunities afforded to it by outside factors. Given the correct opportunity and friendly alliance members, Ottomans, Venice, and Hungary should be broken to ensure the security of the Serbian state. Note that the Ottoman units peak at the early game, and Hungary may fall under personal union with Austria.

Joining the HRE[edit]

Joining the HRE will have benefits as well as drawbacks. It will be possible once Serbia either borders Austria directly or shares a sea tile with them, has high enough relations (which may require an alliance and royal marriage) and has not grown too big. The obvious advantage is having the emperor as a defensive co-belligerent able to call in their own allies, as well as increased aggressive expansion should a war be lost against the Ottomans or Hungary. The disadvantage is that Serbia would not be able to rise beyond the state of Duchy unless leaving the HRE again (which greatly angers the emperor). And as an orthodox nation, the player would not be able to become emperor or even elector unless the Peace of Westphalia happens or the player switches to catholic by falling to religious rebels.

Further expansion[edit]

Once Serbia has established itself by expanding and maintaining powerful alliances, the primary expansion targets should be the remaining Balkans and Anatolia. It is especially important to destroy the Ottomans as completely as possible, in order to prevent a later retaliation when the player and/or their allies are weak. Secondary targets are Italy's rich provinces (especially if Naples finds themselves independent) and Poland (if the player sees no further need for a Polish alliance). Arabia and Africa are within grasp once Anatolia is secured, and the taking of Jerusalem and Mecca can provide more missionaries to speed up conversions.

Choice of ideas[edit]

  • Quality, Quantity, Offensive, Defensive ideas help field a more powerful army. Taking Aristocratic ideas is also good for staying on top with the contemporary military tech.
  • Economic ideas will help battle the inflation from gold mines in Kosovo as well as helping with autonomy reduction.
  • Influence and Diplomatic ideas will help any bid to become the emperor of the HRE.
  • Religious or Humanist will help prevent unrest either through conversion or through acceptance.

Achievements[edit]

Lazarus icon
Lazarus
As Serbia, own the entire Balkans as core provinces.
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