Started palying Medieval 2

This game is undeniably addictive, but it's also so goddamn complicated! I'm playing as Venice on Easy and I'm encountering trouble (Milan seems to be strong as a motherfuck, and noone likes me diplomatically except some muslim factions, my standing with the Pope is low). I've realized I will probably have to start again.

Any experienced M2TW players here? I'd sure appreciate some advice.

i'm experienced... first make sure you upgraded to 1.2.

I actually find the game ridiculously easy, I play hard/hard, haven't lost a fight in my current campaign and have just defeated the turks and byzantine's. My current campaign is egypt, my first was england.

I really didn't play the game to my full capacity, so some of the advice will involve things I didn't actually do. I tended to find the diplomatic side of the game unfulfilling, so I avoided it for the most part. Venice's challenge is you're surrounded my other catholic nations. As a catholic you really should not engage in combat with other catholic's as that is what will bring down the pope's favour.. but the diplomatic side of the game is so buggy it's hard to give advice. For instance in my game I had an awful reputation despite never doing any diplomatic actions beyond trade rights, and having never once attacked another nation first. Since you're playing easy, then maybe the AI will be more forgiving...

I'll tell you what I'd probably do as venice. First thing you're focusing on is taking the rebel towns, you can search around with spies & diplomats, and you'll sometimes get assignments. Unless you see some real good trade goods, i wouldn't bother with merchants to start. Make sure that when you do go to take these towns, you're taking those adjacent to you. If you start wandering around on others territory you'll piss them off, and try not to pick fights. Produce like 3 diplomats and send them in opposite directions and go around to the factions and get trade rights. As I mentioned before, messing with other catholics is bad, so you'll probably wanna do 2 things. First is establish alliances with the other catholics, secondly put yourself in a position where you can fight the muslims.

You start with a town on an island, NE of there on the mainland there's some rebel towns. From there you can put yourself right beside the turks and engage in some ass whipping, beat them and go south to egypt, and then west to the moors. Anyways just some ideas, you may find fighting the other catholic nations more enjoyable.

Few other notes, I have way more towns then castles. I really only have a castle if I need it since it brings in less income. So for instance I'd say have one castle by my starting towns, all my islands are towns typically for the trade, and the computer sucks at naval invasions anyways. And then as I expand I would guesstimate I have one castle for every 4 towns typically. If I take over a castle from the enemy and I already have a castle right beside it or whatever, i'll typically convert the lesser castle.

Combat is rather simple most of the time, every so often you can be creative... but typically horses at flanks, archers at front... since you might go into muslim nations I suggest light calvary, and your own archers to negate there abundance of horse archers, especially when the mongols come...

ive played the medieval series pretty regularly for many years, if you have any specific area you want advice in just ask. as whambo mentioned, you should make upgrading to 1.2 a priority.

venice is a pretty decent faction for a beginner, they have an awkward starting position but venice itself is well-situated and they have access to quite a few top-tier units. venice is actually a powerful enough faction that when i play them i tend to gift my beginning provinces to the pope and start a new kindgom in the holy lands, but thats kind of an advanced tactic

since you mention weak relations with the pope, if i were you i'd see just how fast i can get a diplomat over there. i usually juice him up a little, give him several gifts of 1k to 2k florin over a few turns and his opinion of you will increase dramatically. if possible get him to agree to an alliance, that way when milan or the hre attacks you the pope will likely excommunicate them, and with a good rep he'll be more likely to ok the crusades you request.

i was just thinking about starting a new campaign tonight, if you want i can try to throw together some screenshots of the early game along with some explanations of what i do and why

hey guys, thanks for the input

Fei, screenshots would be awesome, thanks

I have played Rome Total War and Barbarian Invasion, but never got M2YW. It sounds pretty sweet with the whole Pope diplomacy stuff.

Check out the Lands to Conquer mod, it makes combat seem a lot more like it did in MTW1 (slower paced, less chaotic), and rebalances pretty much all of the units. Archers are especially viable in this mod.

I just can't play anymore without being disappointed in the game. There's no excuse for the AI to be pulling the same stupid shit it's pulled since Shogun. Just an example: it's not really that hard to put half your army completely behind the enemy's army, without him even reacting.

I challenge anyone to the original Rome Total War online, my cohort will chop you to pieces.