I am moving the work I had onto the Umbra Spherae map. Here I leave a description of how it looks so far. Europe and the Mediterranean are already playable, only that it is all CK2-era, so there are no new early modern ere mechanics and flavour events. However, one new thing in that sense are new trade buildings and there is the protestant religion.
Others I have worked on haven’t been included in this article, like the North African states (including the Barbarossa brothers in Algiers) and the Sahel kingdoms (Songhay, Mali, Jolof, Air), or like the Kalmar Union or Scotland.
The Indian Ocean
As you can see below, Portugal has a number of enclaves on strategic points in the trade routes from the East Indies. It also has control over ports along the African coast, from Cebta and Agadir in Morocco to Mozambique. In the future there will be mechanisms to deliberately block trade, as the Portuguese intended to do in order to divert routes.
The Ottomans and the Safavids are destined to clash over the Caucasus, Mesopotamia and the Arabian peninsula. A fractured Arabia (Medina, Al-Hasa, Al-Muraydis in Nejd and Hil, Nabhanids Oman) is taken advantage of by powerful empires around.
The first Mughal ruler, Babur, is threatened by his nemesis the Shaybanids in the North, the powerful Safavids in the West and the sultanates of Delhi (Lodi), Gujarat (Muzaffarid) and Sindh (Samma) in the South and East.
In East Africa there is a constant back-and-forth between Christian rulers (led by the old Solomonic dynasty in Ethiopia/Abyssinia) and the Muslims, like the Adal sultans in Afar and the newly converted Sultan of Sennar (Nubia).
In the West of the Steppes, the Christian rulers have accumulated royal titles, with the Jagellions uniting Poland and Lithuania on one side and Hungary, Croatia and Bohemia on the other; the Russian Muscovites have also grown significantly in size. The Teutonic Order and the Principality of Ryazan are living their last days.
To their East, they have the successors to the Golden Horde: Kazan, Astrakhan, Nogai and Crimea. The last, on the coast of the Black Sea, has been forced to pay tribute to the Ottomans, as have Wallachia and Moldova. Though weaker than before, the Turks and Mongols who remain in the steppes will profit from raids, especially for slaves, against their surrounding realms. Sunni and Turkish rulers can now raid and sail through rivers.
Carlos I of Spain or Karl V von Habsburg has inherited a multitude of realms from his grandparents. He rules over Spain, with various Viceroys managing the Netherlands, Navarre, Valencia, Aragon, Catalonia, Naples, Sicily, Sardinia and Austria.
François I of France is continuing his predecessor’s advance into Italy. He also knows Spain can’t defend its landlocked enclaves for long, like the Franche Comté. Taking over Calais, the last English possession on continental land, or some of the small, now undefended German states are other opportunities.
The Holy Roman Empire is breaking up. Being the Emperor now means little, so it is best to take as much land as possible for oneself. To make things worse, reformers and protestants are creating alternatives to the Catholic Church, threatening the power of the kings and priests of the time.
Henry VIII Tudor is the king of England. And he will get married a few times before dying. And start up the Anglican Church. But for now there’s just a young king, a cardinal Thomas Wolsey and the Boleyns (maybe I’m forgetting a couple other characters).
Don’t look! There is so much to be done still, especially on the part of the Umbra Spherae Reborn team. However, would like to let you know that Hernan Cortes and Francisco Pizarro are here already.
Literally the only thing done is the dynasty tree of the Zhu, rulers of the Ming Empire. Yes, he’s a drunkard.