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In order to form Scandinavia, you must fulfill the following requirements:
- Be a Great Power
- Own or sphere the owner of all Scandinavian cores (At the start of the game, it is all of the territory of Denmark and Sweden minus their colonies)
- Have at least 45 prestige
- Be at peace
The easiest and quickest way to form Scandinavia is to become a great power first, and then sphere the rest of the cores.
The other way is through conquest, which won’t be easy and will cost infamy, and you’ll still have to become a great power somehow in order to take the decision.
Great Power by Prestige
One of the great advantages of Nordic nations are their extremely high literacy rate in the 1836 start date at 80%.
This gives them a tech advantage over most over nations, and you should absolutely be rushing prestige techs like Romanticism and Realism.
Plus this dovetails nicely with the 45 prestige requirement.
Idealism will help increase your research points in between, and give you extra prestige if you save up RP for it and snag those inventions.
And Ideological thought will increase pluralism which is a great RP boost.
Spend all your money on education to get more clergy so you can research faster.
Sweden is already close to being a great power in 1836. A few extra points of prestige will carry you into a great power, and you can then move onto the next phase if you act fast.
Beware, however, that the longer that time goes on, the harder it will get to become a great power by prestige – as other scores like Industry and Military start to take off for the other nations.
You should be researching nothing else (except perhaps Experimental Railroads).
You cannot afford any delays, so once you achieve great power status, you must move quickly onto the next phase.
Invest, Influence, Sphere
You may notice that it’s difficult to sphere Denmark while the other great powers are sabotaging your every effort.
If you had any spare cash ten years ago, you should’ve invested it into Denmark. This will almost destroy the ability of other great powers to gain influence in your closest neighbor.
In fact, even after they’re sphered by other Great Powers, if you invest more than them (which can mean as little as spending 2k on a railroad) then the AI will just give up (though they’re not above spiting you if they’ve stored influence).
So as soon as you become a great power, you should quickly be able to convince your neighbor to join your sphere of influence.
If Austria declares war and liberates parts of Denmark, do not fear – act quickly and you can easily sphere Schleswig with the same strategy.
För Brödrafolkens Väl!
And congratulations, you’ve just formed Scandinavia!
We’ve formed it in 1845, but it can be done earlier with a bit of luck (for example, if Spain gets humiliated in some war, you can quickly take their place) and with earlier foreign investment in Denmark.
Any cores from your last country also carries over.
For example, Finland from Sweden.
What To Do Afterwards
It’s not all smooth sailing, since the real work has just begun.
Scandinavia is barely the largest country in the world.
And from now on, she’ll have to fight to keep her great power status.
You’re not a military power, and Russia and Germany glance threatening at Finland and Schlesweig.
Seek alliances where possible, but you may have to concede defeat within Europe.
From now, you’re a great power – which means you can go abroad and do unto others.
You can try influencing Egypt and building the Suez Canal in order to rush colonization in Africa, or fabricate a claim on a primitive nation.
For now, it’s just a standard great power strategy, but with the unity of all brotherly Nordic peoples.