How To Form the USA in Europa Universalis IV

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The United States are one of the nations historically formed at the extreme end of the centuries that EU4 spans. The American War of Independence is a bookmarked date in the game, and you can play in it if you so wish!

However, everyone knows that all proper EUIV campaigns begin in 1444.

In this guide we’ll explore all the ways you can easily form the nation of the United States as fast as possible, so you can enjoy playing as them until you are bored.


Requirements To Form the USA

The United States can only be formed by decision. This decision is only visible (and thus clickable) to nations fulfilling the following criteria:

  • Random New World is not enabled
  • Has not enacted a colonial nation formation decision OR is one of the following:
    • Texas
    • Florida
    • California
    • Alaska
    • Louisiana
    • Illinois
    • Vermont
    • Hawai’i
  • Is not an end-game tag
  • Is not a nomad nation
  • Is not the Holy Roman Empire or the Papal States
  • Owns at least a province in Colonial Eastern America region
  • One of the following:
    • Is a colonial nation
    • Is a former colonial nation
    • Capital is in the Colonial Eastern America region and the nation is NOT in an American technology group

After fulfilling all the above, you need the following things to enact the decision:

  • USA does not exist
  • Administrative technology at least 10
  • Is not a subject nation other than a tributary state
  • Is not at war
  • Capital is a core province in the Colonial Eastern America region
  • Own at least 10 cities in the Colonial Eastern America region
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Only requirement left is being independent. This scenario is unlikely, as you will be playing as the overlord and releasing the nation directly.

Method 1: The European Route

Looking at these requirements one concludes that you essentially need to play as a colonial nation or abandon the Old World and set up directly in America.

Abandoning and relocation directly to the New World is not worth it, but it is an option if things change in future patches.

Both methods demand you explore and colonize the northern hemisphere. This means that you need a nation that can colonize from early on and has easy access to north America.

The best choices for this are England and Portugal.

Of course, you can do it as others, but these two have the most advantages. Other decent options are Castile, France, Brittany, and Norway.

Portugal can start colonizing from the moment they hit admin tech 4 and picking exploration ideas. Their Atlantic Island holdings and colonial range bonuses from various sources help them reach north America despite their southern location.

England, despite how it seems on the map, is only slightly closer geographically to the eastern seaboard than Portugal. This still helps them though. Colonizing the thirteen colonies with a British culture will also lead to the eventual formation of an American culture, which makes for some nice roleplaying.

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Starting a colony as England

You will need to wait until diplomatic tech 7 to start properly colonizing in future US territory. This does not stop you from filling up the exploration and expansion idea group as soon as possible. Reaching Canada’s shores is easier, so use it as a steppingstone to reach the USA earlier.


Building Up the Colonies

While still colonizing the Americas, assuming you aim to play as the colonial nation there eventually, make sure to have a decent powerbase at home.

This will ensure you can colonize and build up the colonies faster, so you can play as them the soonest.

Note: Do not neglect your technology levels! Your colonial subject’s tech will be based on yours upon the time of its formation. After the colonial nation forms, you can shift into spending more monarch points on developing your colony’s provinces.

Depending on the patch, the native nations might be extremely aggressive towards your colony. On patch at the time of this writing, natives are so aggressive that it’s impossible for a colonial subject to survive without constant babysitting from its overlord.

Remember that if your subject gets declared on by any natives, you will not be called to defend them.

You need to manually do it by enforcing peace on the aggressor nation. They usually will not accept, dragging you into the war on your colonial subject’s side.

Also make sure that you keep armies around to deal with any rebels your colonial subject might face. Do not forget to influence them if you are a great power and occasionally pay their debts as well!

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The enforce peace screen. The nation will most likely refuse, dragging you into the war as the war leader.

When to Switch to the Colonial Nation

You do not need to choose to play as the colonial nation from the moment it forms. In fact, it’s advisable to keep colonizing and babysitting them for quite some time.

I recommend securing at least 30 provinces for them before switching.

When you feel the colonial nation is in a position where you can comfortably play as them you can do the switch. Step-by-step how to do it:

  1. Click on your nation’s shield on the top left
  2. Got the Subjects tab (second to last)
  3. Click the “release one of your colonial subjects” button on the bottom right
  4. Choose the desired subject to release
  5. Tick the “Play as the released subject” checkbox
  6. Press “Send”
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Make sure to tick the checkbox, otherwise you will keep playing as the initial nation!

Now, being a free colonial nation with enough land in the Eastern America colonial region, you can simply take the decision to become the USA.

Congratulations, you can now manifest destiny and start pushing westwards!

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All requirements for clicking the decision successfully met.

Method 2: The Polynesian Route

If you paid attention to the requirements for forming the United States, you may have noticed that Hawai’i has a special clause giving them access to the decision!

In fact, Hawai’i even has a unique achievement tied to them that requires forming the United States while starting as any of the four Hawaiian minors.

Hawai’i itself is a formable nation, easily formed by any Polynesian nation with its capital in Northern Polynesia.

The hardest part is moving your capital over to the Eastern Seaboard. To do that, you need to first have it in a state where it is the sole province. This can be achieved either by getting rid of the other provinces in that state. (By returning cores or releasing nations for example)

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Moving the capital to America after isolating the Hawai’ian capital.

This way you do not need to release any nation. Simply form the United States when possible and keep playing to your heart’s content!

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Accessing the decision as Hawai’i
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G. Tsechilidis

Born and raised Greek citizen. His love of history, geography, and all things map-related, are certainly a contrast to his pursuit of a master in civil engineering. An avid gamer from a very young age, he found the perfect match in Grand Strategy Games. If not for a good chess match or a round of carambole billiards, you'll certainly catch him firing up EU4 or a Total War game to spend the evening.