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The fleets of India, The Great Game campaigns, new loading screens, huge sound and graphical improvements and more.

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Foothold in India: The Great Game

The Great Game was a rivalry between the 19th century British and Russian Empires over influence in Asia, primarily in Afghanistan, Persia, and later Tibet. The two colonial empires used military interventions and diplomatic negotiations to acquire and redefine territories in Central and South Asia. By the early 20th century, a line of independent states, tribes, and monarchies from the shore of the Caspian Sea to the Eastern Himalayas were made into protectorates and territories of the two empires.

Foothold in India is a light overhaul modification, addressing the problems of vanilla Empire while staying true to its spirit.

It is a modular project, with all '.pack' files acting as independent modules that can be applied in any combination with each other or as standalone modifications.

Check out the previous article about Caucasian troop roster, Pirates with grenades and other small mods.

Check out the next article about Linux migration and a surprise attack on ETW community..

The Fleets of India

Mahratta pirates attacking the sloop 'Aurora', of the Bombay Marine, 1812; beginning of the action

All Indian factions and Persia received a complete early navy redesign. The factions now start with Barbary-style fleets, which evolve into proper European fleets with technological progress.

The main device of early naval warfare in the Indian Ocean is now a Light Gallivat - a small, armed boat with sails and oars, used on the Malabar Coast in the 18th and 19th centuries. Further onwards, they are complemented by Medium Gallivats and Grabs - native Arab-Persian and Indian cargo, pirate, and war vessels, comparable to Mediterranean Xebecs.

Historically, Maratha navy was among the strongest in the region, successfully competing with the British and Portuguese. Another ship type used was the Pal (Maratha Man-of-war), which was a cannon-armed, three-masted vessel. The grabs had broadsides of 6- and 9-pounder guns, and carried two 9- or 12-pounders on their main decks. These guns pointed forward through port-holes cut in the bulkheads. The gallivats were mostly armed with light swivel guns, but some also mounted six or eight cannons, either 2- or 4-pounders. These boats were propelled by forty to fifty oars.

The Great Game Campaign

Tinted lithograph from 'Sketches in Afghanistan', 1838-1842, by Louis and Charles Haghe after James Atkinson, published by Henry Graves and Company and J W Allen and Company, 1 July 1842.  As they travelled along the narrow passes between the high ridges of Baluchistan, the British and Indian troops of the Army of the Indus were vulnerable to ambush by the Baluchis, who hid in dens in the ravines. Skirmishes and sniping attacks were common events.

Foothold in India includes 6 startpos files to choose from. Currently, the most ambitious one is 1700 The Great Game campaign. Not all implemented changes are completely historical: the focus is on the gameplay, improving the playing experience and strategical impact of minor and Eastern factions (which makes my mod related to the glorious Minor Factions Revenge), but remaining faithful to vanilla Empire, without going over the edge. Some of the changes are:

  • Giving Admiralties to Denmark and Barbary States.
  • Introducing emergent Bohemia (replaces Hessen).
  • Replacing Caucasian and Crimean starting armies with units from the Caucasus unit pack.
  • Moving Ottoman capital to Ankara (for gameplay concerns: the AI tends to defend the capital better, and Anatolia is a more important place than Rum, since it has a school and is a vast major province).
  • Making Carlos II 99 year old (so that the Spanish Succession War starts faster).
  • Readjusting the AI, making all factions fully functional (in vanilla, minor factions are almost inactive).
  • And last, but not least, readjusting diplomatic relationships, primarily between Eastern factions, to make them more dynamic.

Aesthetical improvements

Unit descriptions

Some of the units received proper historical descriptions, and with time, I plan to add these to all the new units in my unit packs. My goal is to make Foothold in India feel almost like a DLC, with aesthetically uniform descriptions and designs.


Ultima Ratio

The new package comes alongside Media Add-on 1.1. It includes adopted fonts, sounds, effects and graphics packages from the splendid Ultima Ratio: Black Label compilation.

And as a bonus, it includes one package of my own design...

The Orientalist Loading Screens


This is not simply a compilation of loading screens: this is a small collection of 19 pieces of fine art in the style of Orientalism. The works of world famous painters - such as Franz Roubaud, Adolf Schreyer, Vasily Vereshchagin, and, of course, Jean-Léon Gérôme - are there to make your playing experience ever more special.


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