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Any Malay nation can form Malaya after uniting most of the eponymous region. The region itself is religiously diverse. Most are either Sunni or Hindu, with a few being Animist or Theravada.
This matters when forming Malaya, as Muslims have a variation of the requirements:
If playing as a Muslim nation, you must have these provinces as cores:
For other faiths, these are the mandatory cores instead:
And regardless of religion, you must also own at least 40 provinces in the Malaya and Indonesia regions before you can form Malaya.
Among the starting Malay nations, Majapahit (Hindu) and Malacca (Sunni) are the best at getting these targets fast.
They have their unique “Majapahit/Malaccan Campaign” casus belli (CB). It allows you to quickly vassalize all other Malay nations — regardless of their distance.
Majapahit’s more fun than Malacca in this regard. Their CB’s “range” can be escalated as you go through their missions. In fact, they’re a dark horse in the race for World Conquest.
A typical Majapahit playthrough will usually go like this:
- Majapahit vs. the Malays
- Majapahit vs. the Chinese
- Majapahit vs. the World
On top of that, Majapahit has colonial ideas and missions too. These can help you get the 40 provinces needed for forming Malaya.
The Spice Must Flow
|Form the nation of Malaya|
- Strategy: The Fall of Majapahit
- Step 1: Set Sunda and Brunei as your rivals
- Step 2: Set Shakti as your Hindu personal deity
- Step 3: Marry your starting tributaries and improve your relations with them
- Step 4: Spy on Makassar and fabricate claims on their two provinces
- Step 5: Do your estates and set your national focus to Admin
- Step 6: Unpause, wait for the disaster, then boost your stability
- Step 7: Wait for the hero to emerge
- Step 8: Declare war on Sunda using the “Humiliate Rival” CB
- Step 9: Conquer Makassar
- Step 10: Diplomatically subjugate Bone and Luwu
- Step 11: Stabilize your nation
- Subjugating Malaya
Strategy: The Fall of Majapahit
As Majapahit, you’ll get hit with “The Fall of Majapahit” disaster one month into the game. It’s a scripted disaster that you can’t prevent.
It comes with several immediate effects and ongoing maluses that persist until the disaster ends:
|Immediate Loss||Ongoing Modifiers|
-50 Claim strength for your heir
|+15% All power costs
+15% Liberty desire in subjects
-50% Average monarch lifespan
To end the disaster, you must complete your “Prevent Collapse” mission.
It’s also preceded by three other missions that concern your stability and relations with your subjects.
Each completed mission will prevent certain bad events of the disaster from popping up. So it’s in your best interest to finish them as soon as possible.
|Demand Loyalty||Have at least 5 loyal subjects||-10% Subject liberty desire for 20 years
Prevents the “Disloyalty to Majapahit” event from occuring
|Restore Order||Have at least +2 stability
Have at least 90 legitimacy
Have no ongoing rebellions
|+1 Yearly legitimacy for 20 years
Prevents the following events:
|Protect the Faith||Have at least 80% Religious unity
All owned provinces have less than 2 unrest
At least 10 years have passed since “The Fall of Majapahit” disaster broke out
|-33% Missionary maintenance cost for 20 years
Prevents the “Pretender Challenges the Throne” event from occuring
|Prevent Collapse||Have completed the three previous missions
Own the following provinces:
Note: Majapahit already owns these provinces. Just make sure you don’t lose them as you do the other missions.
|Ends “The Fall of Majapahit” disaster
+1 Diplomatic relation (permanent)
These may all sound daunting, but there’s an easy formula to resolve them.
Majapahit has two unique events about the hero Damarwulan. His actions will add a bit of stability to your country. He can also potentially become your heir.
So the following steps to resolving the disaster will also revolve around his hero’s journey.
Step 1: Set Sunda and Brunei as your rivals
They’re your only options for rivals at the start. Brunei’s on another island, but Sunda’s right next to you.
Your bigger army can easily walk over to them and pick a fight.
This option will be useful in raising your stability. More on that later in Step 6.
Step 2: Set Shakti as your Hindu personal deity
As a Hindu, you can set a personal deity for your ruler. To help you deal with the disaster, you’ll want to select Shakti as your deity.
You’re going to be on the warpath later to help Damarwulan with his goals. Shakti’s modifiers will aid him well in his quest.
Later, when you’ve secured more vassals, you can switch to Ganesha for the diplomatic modifiers. They’ll make your diplomatic annexations progress faster.
Step 3: Marry your starting tributaries and improve your relations with them
Bali, Banjar, Blambagan, and Palembang — these four are your tributaries at the start.
They’re somewhat loyal to you.
But most will turn disloyal after the disaster hits you with the liberty desire malus.
Propose royal marriages with your tributaries so each of them gets -5% liberty desire.
This will mitigate the disaster’s malus. But you’ll still want to improve your relations with them. Max out their opinion to completely erase their liberty desire.
Step 4: Spy on Makassar and fabricate claims on their two provinces
Aside from Sunda and your tributaries, Makassar is your only other neighbor.
Conquering them puts you beside Bone and Luwu, who can become your tributaries later. But first, you need to claim their provinces so you can declare war on them.
Step 5: Do your estates and set your national focus to Admin
You’re going to need lots of admin power to boost your stability to +2.
As such, you’ll want to set your national focus to Administrative.
You may also hire an Artist as your admin advisor if one’s available. They give you a -10% stability cost modifier for as long as they’re employed.
You should also grant the basic privileges to your estates. The important ones are those that increase your monthly monarch power income.
Step 6: Unpause, wait for the disaster, then boost your stability
With all previous steps done (or initiated), unpause the game and wait for December.
At that time, the disaster will trigger on its own. It’ll reduce your stability to -3. This level prevents you from declaring any wars.
To fix that, you just have to boost it up to -2. Then you’ll be able to go to war at any time.
You also want to boost stability every time you have enough admin power. You need to be at +2 stability for one of your missions.
Step 7: Wait for the hero to emerge
The “A Hero Emerges” event will appear sometime around 12 months after the breakout of the disaster.
In this event, you’re given a choice of either making Damarwulan a general or banishing him.
Go for the first choice, then assign him to lead your army.
You must have him win 5 battles to trigger his next event. He’s a competent general, so you just need to give him some enemies to fight.
You’ll be doing that in the following steps below.
But before that, there’s one other thing you should know about this event series.
After Damarwulan’s 5th win, an event will appear which will give you the following rewards:
- +1 Stability
- +25 Legitimacy
- +10 Prestige
However, this follow-up event also has two hidden options.
The first one can make Damarwulan your consort, but that’s not really useful.
The better choice is to make Damarwulan your heir.
To get that option, you must disinherit your current heir before Damarwulan wins his 5th battle.
Your heir has 0/1/1 stats, while Damarwulan will have 4/4/5 as an heir. The massive difference in their talent justifies the former’s
Step 8: Declare war on Sunda using the “Humiliate Rival” CB
Go ahead and declare war on Sunda using the “Humiliate Rival” CB.
The main purpose of this war is to give your hero some battles to fight. But you should also aim to attain either of these peace terms:
|Peace Term||War Score Cost||Victor’s Gains|
|Humiliate||40%||+30 Power projection|
|Show Strength||100%||+30 Power projection
+100 to each type of monarch power
“Show Strength” gives you power that you can use to further stabilize your country.
However, a 100% war score might be impossible to attain.
Sunda can often ally with a nation on another island.
While they usually won’t transport their army to help Sunda, their navy will reinforce Sunda’s fleets. Together, they can sink your ships, which means you won’t be able to attack them on their island.
In that case you can settle for the “Humiliate” peace term.
Sure it’s not as rewarding. But it’s also one of the Age objectives. It’ll still help you accrue Splendor to unlock Age abilities.
Step 9: Conquer Makassar
After your fight with Sunda, your next target is Makassar.
This time, you’ll want to completely annex them.
But before you declare war, ferry your troops over to Mamuju. It’s an uncolonized province that’s next to Makassar’s border.
Doing this lets you avoid fighting Makassar’s navy. It’s also safer for your army.
Tip: You can also march Damarwulan’s army in circles in the uncolonized provinces. There’s a chance they’ll encounter the natives who’ll engage them in battle. Winning against those natives also counts towards your hero’s win goal.
Like with Sunda, Makassar may be allied to someone on another island. As you may have learned, naval battles should be avoided.
Your navy’s not that strong to take on an allied armada.
If Makassar does have allies, then you can’t fully annex Makassar in one war. But that’s okay.
You can settle with annexing Soppeng province from them. The purpose of this war is to gain a land border with Bone and Luwu. Taking Soppeng satisfies that objective.
Step 10: Diplomatically subjugate Bone and Luwu
Now that you’re neighbors with Bone and Luwu, you’ll be able to make them your tributaries.
You’ll need to improve relations with them first though. Once their opinion becomes positive, they’ll accept your tributary offer.
After doing this, you’ll have 6 subjects in total.
This means you can complete your “Demand Loyalty” mission.
It’ll also be important for your “Enforce Loyalty” mission that you’ll do after ending your disaster. That’s the mission that unlocks the “Majapahit Campaign” CB.
Step 11: Stabilize your nation
With your initial wars over and your subjects pacified, you can now focus on your other two missions.
Both need you to hit these numbers:
- +2 Stability
- At least 90 Legitimacy
- No rebels
- At least 80% Religious unity
- All provinces have less than 2 unrest
- “The Fall of Majapahit” disaster has been active for at least 10 years
That last goal means the earliest date you can end the disaster is in December 1454. So there’s no rush in fixing your country.
That said, here are some tips on getting the other requirements:
- Legitimacy will go up naturally every year, but you can spend military power to instantly gain 10 legitimacy. You do this by pressing the “Strengthen Government” button in the Government screen.
- You shouldn’t have any problems with religious unity if you only took Soppeng. But if you did manage to fully annex Makassar, then send a missionary to convert both of their provinces. The conversion will take around 2 years to finish.
- Provincial unrest (and rebellions) scales with the other three goals listed above. Unrest will go down as your country stabilizes. If there’s only a couple of provinces left with high unrest, you can station an army in those provinces. They’ll lower the unrest value while they’re there.
After completing these missions, you’ll be able to end the “Fall of Majapahit”.
Go ahead and do that by claiming the reward for the “Prevent Collapse” mission. The disaster will end, and all of its ongoing modifiers will go away.
Enforce Loyalty (Vassal Swarm)
Your next order of business is to do the “Enforce Loyalty” mission.
This requires you to have 6 subjects with less than 20% liberty desire.
You should already have 6 subjects if you’ve followed the previous section of this guide.
The end of the disaster also removes a significant amount of your subject’s liberty desire. If you still have subjects that don’t meet the criteria, keep improving relations with them or use the “Bestow Gifts” action.
Completing the mission will turn your tributaries into vassals.
They’ll also get -100% liberty desire for 15 years.
In short, you’ll have your very own “vassal swarm”.
It’s a community term for having a lot of vassals that you can unleash upon your enemies.
Aside from that, you’ll also gain access to the “Majapahit Campaign” CB. This is the CB which you’ll use to conquer/subjugate the target provinces needed to form Malaya.
From here on out, you can freely wage your Majapahit Campaigns on any Malay nation.
With your vassal swarm, expanding in the region isn’t really a challenge anymore.
So you can keep going on the offensive ‘til you get the 40 provinces and the cores needed for Malaya.