To complete The Great Khan achievement the player must own or have a subject own the Russian, Persian and China Proper regions while playing as either the 金帐汗国 or 蒙古. Protectorates are valid subjects for this achievement.
Horsemen of the Apocalypse
In 1444 the remnants of the Mongol Empire are fragmented and waning in power. Hordes do not begin with Feudalism and have a 10% penalty to institution spread.
Hordes also have some advantages over their neighbors that come with the steppe nomad government type.
- +25%/+50%/+75% National manpower modifier (depending on rank)
- +25%/+50%/+75% Land force limit modifier (depending on rank)
- +50% Looting speed
- 50% cost for reinforcing armies
- Always have Casus Belli on neighbors. See Tribal Feud and Tribal Conquest.
- 25% Bonus shock damage on flat terrain (Steppe, Desert, Drylands, etc). Note this becomes a -25% penalty in non flatland provinces, such as mountains and forests.
- With The Cossacks DLC, use Horde Unity instead of Legitimacy, and may raze non-core owned provinces for monarch power and loot.
As can be seen above, these bonuses aid well towards completing the achievement, as they allow the player expand rapidly. The horde ideas also tie in very well to this achievement, especially the -25% core cost which allows for an even faster expansion rate. The nomadic tech group also allows for armies with 100% cavalry ratio.
Steppe Hordes can be reformed after either Administrative, Innovative or Economic ideas have been completed. Reforming is often not necessary given the military nature of the achievement and the addition of insitutions, as the reinforcement cost reduction and looting speed aid rapid expansion and the player can make a concerted effort to remain on par, or even ahead, of the western powers in terms of technology.
Mongolia starts as a vassal of 卫拉特 in 1444 and since it is far from Europe with lacklustre administrative capabilities will have to develop provinces if it wants to comptete technologically. In comparison, the Golden Horde starts much closer to Eastern Europe and can fight 莫斯科 and 立陶宛 earlier before moving east. Compared with the fact that the Golden Horde starts as an independent nation, this makes them a more favourable choice than Mongolia if the player wants the easiest possible game. In terms of enjoyment both campaigns are fairly action packed, but the Golden Horde hits the ground running.
Since you will need to control all Urals and China, don't forget to colonize unoccupied areas, the three areas in north of starting position of Uzbeks and the three areas composing the island of Taïwan.
For the Golden Horde, Lithuania and Muscovy are the first and greatest obstacles that the player will face, and should be dealt with early while the player still has the advantage of superior units. If Muscovy and Lithuania/Poland are allowed to grow too big they will form a very hard foe to beat.
Allying one or two of the nearby hordes will provide with enough military to not be an easy target for any of the hostile neighbouring nations. The first priority for the player is to rival and deal with 克里米亚 and 热那亚 as quickly as possible. The 奥斯曼 will very likely seek an alliance with Crimea and also have mission to conquer Kaffa from Genoa. If handled early enough a confrontation with the Ottomans can be prevented. Crimea is small enough to fully annex in the first war if you set their highest development province as the wargoal. This is a must, because the Ottomans are the best ally possible and do not have any interest in provinces which are required for the achievement. Their immense military power easily make a match for Lithuania and Muscovy, or any other hostile nations.
Key to completion of the achievement is a fast and early expansion. The nations surrounding the Golden Horde are easy prey. Expanding eastward, into the other hordes and ultimately the Chinese region, or southward, to the Persian region also required for the achievement, are both very viable directions. At the start of the game, the alliances are not yet strong enough to fight the player. Remember the flat terrain shock bonus as this is crucial to early victories. Expansion should be a mixture of annexing lands and vassalizing nations. This will give the player enough monarch power to keep expanding. Vassals also provide more military power than annexing provinces directly, making them a more defensive option if needed.
The first wars against Muscovy and Lithuania will most likely be the hardest. The player should wait with attacking until Lithuania or Muscovy are occupied in another war. Combined with the superior early game units and the help of any allies, these nations can be dismantled early and not form a problem later on in the game.
After the first years of expansion, the player will be powerful enough to expand eastward in a rapid pace and not face any major problems along the way. If 大明 collapsed under rebels, which happens very often, conquering the China Proper region will not be too hard as well.
Since the addition of institutions reforming is by no means necessary, or even necessarily beneficial, though admin ideas will probably want to be taken for the additional -25% core creation cost. The player can wait for the institutions to spread from Europe, or they can use the extra monarch power from razing to develop provinces in order to spawn the institution faster (the latter is probably the best option).
Mongolia is by far the more difficult choice to pursue this achievement, but is a potentially rewarding game. They start Tengri with Vajrayana as their syncretic religion, and are subject to 卫拉特. Before unpausing the player should set their focus to military, preferably for the minimum time, as well as using estate interactions to replace their infantry with cavalry in order to make the most of Horde cavalry ratios. This interaction will also provide a general, but it might be worth turning you heir/ruler into a general if it did not provide at least a two shock general. 乌兹别克 and 察合台 will often rival Oirat and will help in an independence war. It is not necessary to receive any support however, if these nations independently declare war on Oirat. In the starting years, Oirat will get involved in a war either by starting one themselves, getting called in by an ally, or being declared upon. The player should aim to declare a war for independence either when Oirat is in war, or when the player has at least Uzbek supporting their independence. When won, as many provinces as possible should be taken, ideally getting provinces next to as many nations as possible, as this will provide the player with multiple expansion routes. Alliances are not necessary, though 日本 is a nice option for deterrence as the player will likely not have any conflict of interest with them until late into the game.
Opening moves should be opportunistic expansions into the neighbouring lands of Central Asia and Manchuria, preferably as fast as possible. One move the player might consider is full annexing Yarkand out from underneath Chagatai (if they haven't developed very much), and then releasing them as a vassal. This avoids rebels too early into the game, and provides a nicely sized horde vassal. The player should also be aware of infighting to the east, and should expand as far as possible before Korea can become too aggressive. A mixture of vassalizing and annexing is advised to spread the cost of monarch points, though it is often not advisable to feed horde vassals. Given the capabilities of hordes, and the limited impact of AE due to the varied nature of the expansion routes, it is possible to expand very quickly.
The player must also be aware of 大明's heirs. If at any point Ming has an Average or Weak heir the player should prepare for war. As soon as Ming looses the Mandate of Heaven the player should seek to enter a war with them. If the player is allied with Japan they should consider declaring war on Korea to get Japan involved, as this will limit the impact of enemy occupations in terms of war score. The goal should be for the player to destroy Ming's manpower pool, and any weak mercenary armies they might send up to Mongolia, in order ensure the success of Ming's subsequent rebellions. If the player has full cavalry armies the weak Chinese stacks will be easily ripped apart. This will strain the player's manpower pool, but the destruction of Ming is well worth the delay. Additionally, if the player is strong enough, they can try and tie up Ming's armies during the actual rebellion, ensuring Ming's total destruction. If the war was declared on Korea, the player can seperate peace Ming out and continue the fight against the infantry armies of Korea, or simply end the war once enough damage has been done.
When the player reaches the borders of Russia, or any other nations that owns the regions needed for the achievement, they should be powerful enough to take them head on. If this is not the case, there are still enough opportunities to expand.
The player should always raze provinces unless they are developed enough to be worth making into hyper development states for the economic boosts, such as late game in South China or Northern India/Persia. The overflow of diplomatic and military monarch points from razing can be used to develop cities in order to ensure the player can keep up to date on institutions. With this in mind the player should be wary of spending money, as their large nation will impact their ability to tech up, and as such large sums will be needed to adopt institutions.