Sunday, April 21, 2024

Campaign Setting: The Phocaean League

Alexander the Great died in 323 BC. That same year, Rome was destroyed forever by an alliance of Samnites, Etrurians, Umbrians, and Gauls. The fate of the Mediterranean now hangs in the balance.

The Carthaginian Empire. The Tyrants of Syracuse and their subjects. The mighty Diadochi. The Phocaean League.


The year is 304 BC. I write in the city of Massilia, sitting on my porch looking south across the Sardinian Sea. Our allies and outposts run west along the Spanish coast, and each year we do brisk trade and battle in turn with the Allobrogians, the Edetani, and the Punics. We are not subjects of the Medes or the Macedonians, we hazard the free life of the far western Hellenes. Yet the freshness of the sea is marred by a dark horizon. The largest empire the world has ever known, the empire of Alexander, has broken apart, and its thrashing limbs may come to crush us all. 

Herodotus of Halikarnassos tells us of Cyrus the Great, his archers and his emissaries, his Achamaenid Empire. They laid waste to Assyria, united all Asia, and then crashed against the bulwark of Greece. 

With their retreat there followed an Athenian Empire and then a Spartan Empire. Syracuse drank the lifeblood of Athens; Sparta and the Medes preyed upon her corpse. Sparta took the hegemony, but was in turn brought low by the ravening wolves she had sought to collar.

When Sparta lay supine at the foot of Macedon, Phillip the warrior king descended to make war upon the Greeks, Thracians, and Illyrians. He trod Sparta underfoot, but did not chain her. Instead, he lashed the other Greek states to his hegemony and formed a new Hellenic League to drive the Persian lords from their courts in Asia Minor. Philip forged an army, a thing of pikes, lances, and skirmishing axemen.

He was not to witness the vindication of his design. In 336 BC, Philip met the dagger of his close companion, Pausanius, who gave no reason for his regicide and was killed in his escape. 

It is said that the Epirote virago Olympias, the fourth wife of King Phillip, had a dream on the eve of losing her maidenhead that a thunderbolt had struck her womb and sent an inferno cascading across the lands. Her son, Alexander, was born on a day of great violence and given over to the hellacious highland cavalry of Macedon for his upbringing. When he came of age, Aristotle was his tutor.

(Philip had destroyed Aristotle's hometown, but in payment for this scholarship he rebuilt it and purchased its citizens out of slavery).

Alexander grew up with boys who would become his generals and Persians who would become satraps and mistresses. He fought the Thracians, Greeks, and Illyrians while Philip was still king, sometimes by his father's side.

Alexander was born to the warrior king of Macedon, educated personally by Aristotle, slept with the Iliad underneath his pillow, and had Achilles for his hero. When Philip died, Alexander became king at the age of 20.

He and his mother murdered their rivals. They stood down a rebellion of Greek states through sheer intimidation. He harrowed the tribes of the north and then turned south to crush Thebes, selling its citizens into slavery. These were the portents of things to come.

Alexander fell upon Asia Minor like a thunderbolt. Olympias's dream was fulfilled. What followed is the legend of our time. Alexander conquered all the lands from Sardis to the Punjab. 

His impenetrable walls of pikes were screened by skilled skirmishers and flanked by lancers led by the King himself. Alexander placed his generals at the heads of his army’s wings while he personally led his lancers to scatter the enemy’s cavalry, then diving into their army at the weakest point. His warriors would not become cowards while their king fought hand to hand. Alexander personally struck down several enemy leaders and was wounded many times. 

Treasuries were broken open before him. His men carried away shields heaped with coins from the battlefields. Blood flowed down the mountainsides, gold flowed to the Mediterranean, and Hellenes flowed into the lands which Alexander had conquered.

An image of his satrapies at their height would be most illustrative.

Today it is remarkable that such a realm could stand for even a moment, but the King of the World had his ways. Those who surrendered before battle were made Alexander’s partisan hunters. Several Persian lords became his satraps and subsequently destroyed neighbors who rose up in rebellion. 

The majority of his satraps, however, were Hellenistic officers who had served as his generals and bodyguards.

Alexander’s design to smelt his empire into a lasting edifice was to be carried out by means of mass marriage. He and his officers would take wives from the aristocracies of their conquered foes. This was far from unprecedented in the Macedonian court; Philip had married an Illyrian, the first of seven wives, though only later did he crush her people. Alexander married the Bactrian noblewoman Roxana. She became pregnant with his son, but in 323BC Alexander died at the Babylonian palace of Nebuchadnezzar. His family and generals immediately commenced intriguing over the succession of his empire, and his wife and children were murdered.

323, the year of Alexander's death, is when this world deviates from the one you know. Nothing is as it would be, for in the year of 323, far from Greece and far from Asia, the city of Rome was destroyed by the Samnites and their allies. Rome was razed and its population enslaved. Only a very few officers escaped to the Nile. The unstoppable force of the ancient world is not to be, and all will be in flux. 

It is now 304 BC. The Alexandrian Argead Empire has torn itself apart and its ripples can be felt across the Mediterranean. The vast lands from Apollonia to Samarkand have been divided between Alexander's generals and companions, and for over twenty years they have fought over the spoils. Many generals have been slain, many lands consolidated. There were once many successors to Alexander's Empire; now, five great and terrible realms remain.

The ANTIGONID EMPIRE of Syria and Asia Minor, suzerain of many Hellenes. Its king is ANTIGONOS I MONOPTHALMUS, "the One-Eyed", the ancient.

The SELEUCID EMPIRE of Persia, Bactria, and Babylon. Its king is SELEUKOS I NICATOR, "the Victorious."

The PTOLEMAIC EMPIRE of Egypt. Its king is PTOLEMAIOS I SOTER, Ptolemy, "the Savior."

The KINGDOM OF THRACE, a nation of wildmen led by Hellenes. Its king is LYSIMACHOS I, a slayer of generals. He is a Thessalian, not a Macedonian; none of the latter have ever let him forget it.

The KINGDOM OF MACEDON is in dominion of its traditional highlands. Its king is mere Kassandros, formerly regent, who usurped it after the murder of Alexander IV.

All of these men were courtiers and companions of Alexander the Great.

The fate of the Mediterranean now hangs in the balance. The Successors clash; their iron armies are ground to powder, and they rely more and more on their levies every day. New lands will be needed, new blood. Quantity must replace quality.

The Imperial Successors fight to a near-stalemate in the East and place Hellenic city-states under heavy subjugation in the West. Athens, Megara, the Cyclades, Ephesos, Miletos, Halikarnassos, and many others are now tributaries of ancient Antigonos. Phoenicia bleeds beneath his whip, as does Judea.

Ptolemy looks north to Crete and Cyprus, and the Cyrenaicans call him Lord, though not yet Master.

Seleukos musters forces for a drive west that may shatter the stalemate and lay all of mainland Greece under his dominion. They have come for our cousins on mainland Greece; our colonies are pearls on the necks of lllyria, Italy, Gaul, and Spain, nor will the rich Punics be spared. Greed and necessity will compel the Diadochi to our shores; in whom can we place our trust?

Syracuse and Carthage fight interminable wars. Cyrenaica has practically bent the knee to Ptolemy. The inland tribes look on us with hunger, and only trade where they cannot plunder. The budding state of Rome has been plowed under by the banditti of the Latin spine.

There is no one who could stop the Successor Empires, should they stretch west across the ocean. No one standing alone.

We once fled our motherland, rather than give homage to the Medes. We call ourselves the Phocaean League, for we are Phocaea's colonies. We settled on the coast of Gaul, while others of our blood settled Emporion at the neck of Iberia, and Hemeroskopeion by the Balearics. We are rich in iron, in foundries, and in expertise. Our armies fight with iron pikes, our marines wear shirts of mail, and our siege weapons are tipped with iron, yet we would be gnats in the face of Antigonos, Seleukos, or Ptolemy. We are too few; too few in cities, too few in men.

There is one more colony of Phocaea, though she is not with the Phocaean League. Elea, on the southwest coast of Italy, was once foremost of the colonial Phocaeans, but she has fallen under the dominion of the Lucanians, brutal Latins who aided Umbria, Samnium, and Etruria in destroying Rome. Elea calls to us for aid, for Phocaean ships and warriors to win Elea's freedom.

There are many such Hellenic cities under the heel of Latins, Illyrians, or Macedonians. If they are not united in a League, they will be burnt by chieftains, subjugated by the Successors, or bled dry by their own internecine wars.

Yet if we expand this Phocaean League, then the Successors, the Diadochi, will surely notice our power rising in the Western Mediterranean. Eventually, their galleys will set sail for our cities, and their gold will flow into the coffers of our enemies. But they will come anyways, eventually. The only thing that can be done is to prepare.


The Mediterranean, 304 BC
The Phocaean League
Elea's Siren Call
The Etymology of the Western Hellenes
Campaign: Navarchs
Campaign: Epilektoi
The Hellenic Cities
Italiote Greek Polities
Illyriote Greek Polities
Sikeliotai Greek Polities
Greece, Crete and the Aegean
Attica, Euboea, Boeotia, and the Peloponnese
Rhodes and The Nesiotic League
The Punic Colonies
The Italian Tribes
Major Pirate Havens
The Antigonid Kingdom
The Seleucid Empire
The Ptolemaic Kingdom
The Diadochi as of 304 BC
The Metastasization of the Empires
National Symbology and Naval Patterns

The Mediterranean, 304 BC

Non-Italicized Name: City
Italicized Name: Notable Small Settlement
2-3 Letter Designation: Part of larger state or league
Underlined Designation: Direct Administration
Non-Underlined Designation: Subject
No Designation: Independent polity
PL: Phocaean League
Car: Carthaginian Empire
PC: Punic Colonies
Etr: Etruria
Syr: Syracusan Hegemony
Sam: Samnites
Luc: Lucanians
TL: League of Tarentum
IL: Illyriote League
Cyr: Cyrenaica
Mac: Macedon
Nes: Nesiotic League
Ant: Antigonid Empire
Pto: Ptolemaic Empire
Thr: Thracian Kingdom
Bos: Bosphoran Kingdom
Scy: Scythians
Col: Colchis
Arm: Armenia
Atr: Atropane
Sel: Seleucid Empire
Jud: Judea
Kus: Kush

        The Phocaean League
The League consists of the descendants of the Ionian city of Phocaea, whose residents fled west rather than fall under Persian domination. This spirit of independence continues to this day, and the body politics of the following cities could be easily roused for a campaign to liberate Elea. Easily roused to open Pandora's Box.

    The Polities of the Phocaean League
Massilia: The most populous city of the Phocaean League, she is politically united with her sisters Agathe and Antipolis. It has the settlement of Tauroention adjacent to it, and Antipolis lays amongst the Ligurians, a Hellenic tribe of pirates. The Massilians hate Persia, as they left their homes in the east rather than submit to Persian rule, but the rise of Parthia is still generations away. Emporion: The Merchant City, and also a major ironworker, along with her twin city of Rode and settlement of Kallipolis. Hemeroskopeion: Iron mining center, sends iron to Emporion

The armies and warriors of the Phocaean League start with a special advantage:
The iron of Hemeroskopeion, the ironworking of Emporion, and Gallic expertise from Massilia mean that the Phocaean League has an unusual capacity to produce mail armor.

This means that Phocaean League marines and hoplites can fight as thorakites in chainmail far earlier than the warriors of most states.

Expert caetrati and Iberian slingers serve the Phocaean League as mercenaries. The Caetrati receive iron Celtic longswords and the slingers are provisioned with iron shot.

        Elea's Siren Call
    To recap, In the beginning, the rich Hellenic city of Elea (a Phocaean colony on the west coast of Italy) calls for the aid of the Phocaean League, as its oppression by the Lucanians and their Samnite allies grows more and more crushing every day

The Etymology of the Western Hellenes
Italiote: Greek colonists on the Italian Mainland
Illyriote: Greek colonists along the Balkan Peninsula
Siciliotes: Greek colonists on the isle of Sicily.

The Elean campaign is an attractive strategic prospect to a nautical league; the Eleans are master mariners and the Lucanians have large quantities of high-quality wood (as do the Umbrians, incidentally), crucial for building a powerful fleet of galleys.

Should the Phocaean League integrate the Eleans, other Italiote cities subjugated by Latin and Illyrian tribes will call for aid.

Bringing cities into the League will bring new markets, as well as contributions of ships and marines. Each full city and provide one field army capable of attacking a city; marine forces that are integral to ships are not capable of presenting credible threats to walled cities.
Forcibly subjugating foreigners will get you additional large land armies, but it reduces the League's ethos, as it's supposed to be a trade and mutual defense league, not a thalassocratic empire. Cities that join willingly will still provide armies.

There are two styles of Campaign: Navarchs and Epilektoi.

        Campaign: Navarchs
By default, the PCs of this campaign will be Phocaean Navarchs, elected naval officials of the League.

This can be a temporary or long-term position to account for people’s changeable availability for games.

Phocaean Navarchs are entitled to command ships and deputations of marines, acting on their own initiative for the benefit of the Phocaean League. They are entrusted with broad leeway in diplomacy when making contact with foreign peoples and powers, but:
-Must consult with a Convocation of the League before any treaties that Navarchs have proposed can be ratified.
-Cannot unilaterally command armies out of their garrisons; before being entrusted with a field army, Navarchs must (A) consult with a Convocation of the League, or (B) convince the leadership of a city that is party to the League to send its own field army.

Convocations occur every three months; delegates meet in a League city, and it cannot be the same League city until all have hosted a Convocation. Arguments are heard for courses of action; if a majority of delegates agree, the League is bound to a course of action.

The mission of the Navarchs is threefold:
-Create a situation where the Phocaean League cannot be subjugated by hostile powers, whether Carthaginian, Syracusan, Epirote, Antigonid, Seleucid, or Ptolemaic. This can be accomplished by establishing new alliances, bringing new cities into the fold (generally by aiding them against their current enemies), or by forcibly subjugating states, though doing the latter will erode the social trust that holds between members. If wars scale up sufficiently, however, the League may find that it must conquer vast enemies or perish.
-Establish order on the Western Mediterranean, capturing pirate ships and burning out pirate holds.
-Speculate on trade, selling captured goods and bringing imports to Phocaean cities.

    Navarch Strategy
Playing the Diadochi off of one another will be very important. Major powers cannot immediately be faced head-to-head, but each of them has unintegrated vassals who can be pried away to cause massive disruption to the beast: Carthage: The Punic Colonies, the Iberians, the Numidians Syracuse: The Syracusan subjects of Locri, Rhegion and Lokroi Epizephyrioi Macedon: The Euboean and Boeotian cities Antigonids: The Nesiotic League, the Ionian and Aeolian cities, the southern Anatolian cities and Cilicians Seleucids: Their primary vulnerability is their empire's sheer vastness, and (eventually) its position between the Antigonids and Ptolemaics
Ptolemy: The Cyrenaicans, the Judeans and Phoenicians once Ptolemy gets that far north
Thrace: The Thracians

Threats to the Nearby States Who Are Likely to Join the Phocaean League Eleans <- Lucanians Neapolis <- Samnites Thourioi and Hipponion <- Bruttians Sipious and Taras <- The Illyrians who have settled in southern Greece Ankon <- Umbria and Picenum Many Sicilian cities <- the Syracusans and Carthaginians The Ilyriote cities <- The Illyrians, and eventually Apollonia and Korkyra Taras <- Eventually Epirus

Opponents to Integrating Other Hellenes into the Phocaean League
Bringing the Siciliotes into the fold: Against the Carthaginians, the Latin Sicilians, and possibly the Syracusan hegemony.
Bringing the Italiotes into the fold: Against the Latins, the Messapians, and potentially some Gauls
Bringing the Illyriotes into the fold: Against the Illyrians and potentially the Epirotes
Bringing the mainland Greeks into the fold: Against Macedon (though Macedon is not yet full suzerain of most of them)
Bringing the Nesiotic LeagueAsia Minor, and Cyprus into the fold: Against Antigonos
Bringing Crete and Cyrenaica into the fold: Against the palatial pirates and Ptolemy
Bringing the Bosporan Hellenes into the fold: Against the Scythians

Winning battles is profitable, both from taking the coins of defeated foes, and by selling survivors into slavery, and may become addictive. This could become a problem when running up against the vast empires of the Eastern Mediterranean, who cannot be defeated in a single decisive battle away from their heartland.

Navarch Campaign Foci:
Grand Strategy
Naval Battles

        Campaign: Epilektoi
The League has a corps of elite peltast skirmishers called the 'epilektoi'. The mission of these men is to close with and destroy enemy skirmishers, often in rough terrain while armies fight below.

In special cases, members of the epilektoi may be tasked to carry out missions abroad, such as espionage, assassination, arson, and the theft of key artifacts (e.g. tabulations from counting houses or sacred relics from temples).

When not on campaign or assignment abroad, the epilektoi controversially engage in cattle raiding against whichever neighbors are currently hostile to the League; in 301 BC, these could be Gauls, Iberians, Latins, or Carthaginians, though the League often trades with these peoples as well.

Members may originate as Phocaean citizens or foreign mercenaries, but the latter must swear off mercenary service and take Phocaean citizenship to serve in the corps.

    Common Backgrounds
Member-State Hellenes
Phocaean marine
Hellenic aristocrat
Olympic athlete
Former Mercenaries
Gallic scout
Iberian slinger
Iberian caetrati
Balearic slinger
Cretan archer
Freed Etruscan funerary gladiator
Numidian javelinman

Epilektoi Campaign Foci:
Close Combat

The Hellenic World, 304 BC

            The Hellenic Cities

        The Western Greeks
    Italiote Greek Polities
The city of Neapolis is under Samnite dominion after siding with Rome in the war
The city of Elea in Southern Italy is under the dominion of the Lucanians, another Italian hill tribe
Sipontum, around the city of Sipious, in southern east coast Italy is free but surrounded by the Samnites
Tarentum, city of Taras, is allied with Apulia and Messapia, Illyrian tribes inhabiitng SE Italy
Metapontum, city of Metapontion, south coast of Italy, is in a defensive pact with Herakleia (to it's SW) and Kroton, further down the coast
Herakleia: City SE of Metapontum (but independent)
Kroton: Surrounded by the Bruttians. Produced and then chased out Pythagoras and his school, revolutionaries afraid of his impious (and growing) influence
Thuria: City of Thourioi, under the dominion of the Bruttians
Alalia: Massalian city on east Corsica, now under the dominion of the Etrurians, via which they rule Corsica's east coast. The Corsicans worship the Caananite gods.
Hipponion: North along the southern tip of Italy, under Bruttian dominion
Ancona: City of Ankon, Italian east coast. Independent but surrounded by the Picentian and Umbrian tribes to south and east, and the warlike Senone Gauls to the north. Produces the precious Tyrian purple dye

    Illyriote Greek Polities
Greek polities along the Illyrian coast, in a defensive pact, the Illyriote League
Chersos: Settlement on an isle off the coast of Illyria
Issa: City of Issa on an island a good distance off the coast of Illyria, guarded by the twin isles of the settlement of Pharos, and the promontory settlement of Korkyra Melaina, all under its control
Epidaurum: City of Epidauros Illyrias
Southern Illyriote polities
Apollonia: Italiote Greek city in west Greece proper (Illyria Graeca). Defensive pact with Korkyra. Rules over core Illyrian population. Uninterested in participation in the Phocaean League. Apollonia and Korkyra wish to share hegemony of Illyria
Korkyra: City on isle off the coast of Epirus. Defensive pact with Apollonia; similar disposition as Apollonia

    Sikeliotai Greek Polities
Syracuse: Cities under its direct control are Messana and Katane
Tyndaria, city of Tyndaris, isles of Siculia (settlement Lipara to the north)
Acragas, independent and alone, second major Hellenic power on Sicily vying with Syracuse. Its temples are the most numerous in the Greek world, as are its tyrants and demagogues
Gelas, Sicilian settlement under Syracusan dominion (but not a direct part of its territory)
Herakleia Minoa: Under Carthagenian domination
Selinous: Forest city under Carthagenian domination
Locri: City of Lokroi Epizphyrioi near tip of southern Italy, under Syrakusan dominion
Rhegium, city of Rhegion, under Syrakusan dominion

The tyrant of Syracuse vies with Carthage for Sicily. The Phocaean League may swallow the poison pill of the Syracusan tyranny to drive Carthage from Sicily, but what then? Agathokles will never accept merely being part of a league of Western Hellenes... eventually, his eye will turn to a Syracusan Empire. In Italy, the Hellenic cities are surrounded by (and often under the overlordship of) Latin, Illyrian, and Gallic tribes. Their future is dim if they cannot be reinforced, but they find themselves in a supine position, with the threat of invasion and razing by their inland neighbors should they be seen to be collaborating with powerful outsiders. The Illyriote colonies live in a dance of death with the Illyrians. 

        The Eastern Greeks
    Greece, Crete and the Aegean contain many, many polities. They are mostly focused on each other (and the Successors); they are a source of immigrants and mercenaries in the west.
The most populous cities around the Aegean are:
Passaron (Epirus)
Pella, Thessalonike, Kassandreia (projecting out of central coastal Macedon)
Larisa, region of Thessaly, within the Macedonian empire

Amphipolis, east of Pella et al
Sparta: Maintains the tradition of a dual monarchy. Enemy of Macedonia and Epirus. Still quite insular and militaristic, though Areus I Agiad is attempting to bring in more Hellenic culture, such as artists and the theater, and he has claimed shared Jewish ancestry in order to recruit Jewish mercenaries; this has been a successful initiative 
Messene: Over the mountains east of Sparta, city of former helots once under Sparta
Lysimacheia, coastal Thrace (which is, indeed, mostly inhabited by Thracians away from the coast, specifically Odrysians, who look north to the Odrysian kingdom)
Chersonesos, independent democracy on Crimea (no nobles)
Pantikapaion and Theodosia, Bosporan Kingdom
Phasis: Graeco-Pontic city on the coast of Colchis, with its isolated settlements of Gyenos and Dioskourias north up the coast; Colchis proper, which surrounds but does not rule Phasis, is Armazic
Mallos and Adanos, region of Cilicia Pedias, the corner of Anatolia nearest Phoenicia, Antigonid Empire. Side is a good ways west up the coast. Salamis Kyprias and Paphos on Cyprus are also under Antigonos. Pergamon and Sardeis are under Antigonos on west Anatolia. Antigoneia in Syria is most populous of them all.
Ephesos is a subject of Antigonos on western Anatolia. This is a huge city, and the Temple of Artemis is a wonder of the world
Knossos and Gortyna on Crete, of many states there
Naxos, highly populous Aegean island, of the Nesiotic League of islands, under Antigonos
Byzantion: Controls the Bosporous from their (Greek) tip of a forested promotory; across the way are Chalcedon (city of Chalkedon, subjects of Antigonos), and beyond them the relatively rural Dacian monarchy of Bithynia, also an Antigonid subject
There is a defensive alliance of Pontic Hellenes just east of Bithynia: Heraclea Pontica (Herakleia Pontike), the largest, as well as the settlement of Tieion and the city of Sesamos.
Sinope, independent Graeco-Pontic autocratic monarchy with a pair of subject settlements up the coast. Zoroastrian Pontus to SE and Cybelene Paphlagonia to SW, both large
Trapezous and its outlying territories, north of Armenia, west along the coast from Colchis
Olbia and Tyras, independent Bosporan-Greek democracies west of Crimea
Kallatis, a subject of Thrace, has a Greek city and settlement on the west coast of the Black Sea. Most other "Greek" states here merely have a small population of Hellenes ruling Dacians
Orgame, Istros, Tomis, Krounoi, Odessos, Mesembria, Apollonica Pontica: all rule Dacians on behalf of Thrace
Athens and its island city of Hephaistaia and other island settlement of Imbros are Antigonid subjects

    Notes on Mainland Greece: Attica, Euboea, Boeotia, and the Peloponnese
The Arcadian League is an alliance of small Peloponnesian city-states, from which cities may frequently come and go. Messene is the largest; other major independent Peloponnesian city-states depicted on the map (Sparta, Argos, Thespia, Thebes) are not members. The Arcadian League’s city-states are primarily focused on matters inside of Greece, and mainland Greece is too near to the mighty Diadochi for the Phocaean League to immediately become involved in matters there without triggering a Macedonian, Antigonid, or Ptolemaic intervention.
Full list: Messene, Mantinea, Stymphalos, Megalopolis, Azania, Heraia, Tegea; they are basically basically Messene + a ring of small cities around the Peloponnesian interior
The other small cities of Greece are a patchwork of Ptolemaic, Macedonian, and Antigonid dominion, as well as a few minor independent cities.

        Notes on Select States That Would Make For Strong Allies

    Rhodes and The Nesiotic League
Nesiotic League: Rhodes' faction (the Nesiotic league historically passed around under the control of various Diadochi, starting off under the Antigonids, and eventually became the Second Nesiotic League with Rhodes as leader). Major grain traders and anti-pirates. Members have isopolity in one another's states, and can unilaterally grant citizenship in all cities and settlements to foreign benefactors. Currently leashed to Antigonus.

Experts in medicine and architecture are attracted to Pergamon, making it a worthwhile partner or addition. Currently leashed to Antigonus.

The Phocaean League can free Cyrene (and its associated federated polities, forming Cyrenaica) for the League; both Ptolemy and the desert nomads are big problems for them. Their lands are a fertile coast surrounded by desert. Cyrenaica is already functionally independent, but might face invasion by Egypt if they give the lie to this.

        Notes on Select Western Powers

    The Punic Colonies
These cities resent Carthaginian overlordship but share a greater social trust with Greater Phoenician colonies than with the Hellenes. Could they somehow be made to declare for the Phocaeans?

    The Italian Tribes
Etruria has conquered Rome, sacking and razing it while the Tarquinian pretenders perished in the war. The Italian tribes remain moribund banditti kingdoms raiding each other for livestock and extracting tributes from the Greek cities of the Italian coast. Etruria is a relatively sophisticated civilization, while Samnium et al are wilder.

The Veneti are the main naval people among the Gauls, dominating trade with Britain, but they are far to the north.

            Hosti Humani Generis - Pirates and Raiders

Major Pirate Havens
Pirates storm towns and plunder them, take important people for large ransoms, and feed slaves into all major economies. Their raids on cultivated coasts can cause mass starvation. They raid sacred and inviolable sanctuaries; historically, they even sailed into the capital Roman port of Ostia and burned the consular war fleet.
Without powerful states patrolling the seas, piracy blooms to epidemic proportions.
Cilicia Trachea: The Crags of Cilicia (especially the promontory of Coracesium). Rugged area difficult to access by land with excellent natural harbors; the Seleucids waver between abortive attempts to stamp them out, and supporting them. Pontus fosters piracy against the larger powers.
Crete: People turn to piracy in the wake of devastating civil wars; not controlled by any major power
Illyria: The coast is very suited to it, though it's less of a melting pot than Cilicia
Delos: Center of the international slave trade; Rhodes and Alexandria are also important
Pretty much every urban people can also be raided from their backcountry at any time. 
The Carthaginian colonies can be raided by Spaniards, Numidians or islanders depending on where they are.
The Siciliotes and Italiotes can be raided by Latins, Gauls and Illyrians depending on where they are.
The Illyrians can be raided by Dacians and Thracians.
The Mediterranean Greeks can be raided by Thracians, Galatians, Phrygians, and in particular by pirates, which is why most big cities are set a few miles inland with an expendable port settlement connected to the city proper. The Thracian Greeks are subject to raiding by the Dacians, the northern Black Sea colonies by Scythians, the eastern Black Sea colonies by Caucasians, and the Cyrene by the Garamantes.
Of course, all of these malefactors (including the pirates) have a sizeable portion among them who would be willing to serve as mercenaries 


The Antigonid Kingdom
Historically, Antigonos would fight a massive battle in 301BC against Lysimachos of Thrace, Seleucus Nicator, and Macedon, and would be killed. His lands would be divided among the victors, with Lysimachos getting western Anatolia, Seleucus getting the northern Holy Land, Judea (embedded in Ptolemaic territory), and Cilicia.

On the death of Antigonos, Seleucus annexes Syria, Judea, and the Antigonid territories of inland Anatolia.

By that time Ptolemy holds the allegiance of the western coastal Anatolian Greek states, and Crete is his giant naval base. 

        The Seleucid Empire
Currently cut off from the Mediterranean, but likely to take Syria once Antigonos passes (as Antigonos is 78 years old)
Historically, Seleucus defeated and killed Lysimachos in 281BC, annexing all of Macedonia and Thrace, but was assassinated shortly thereafter. The Seleucid throne would lose Macedonia and Thrace again but retain most of Anatolia, though restive Greek states would fall in with the Ptolemaic Empire, while the northern Anatolians, Galatians, and Armenians would remain outside Seleucid domination. At this point the Seleucids rule from Persia and Babylon to Tarsos and Pella; if Seleucus Nikator is not assassinated, he could very well be a major villain, the northern thrust of the Diadochi with the Ptolemies to the south.

The Seleucids are likely to push through central and southern Anatolia, conquering Armenia as well, encircling Pergamon. Graeco-Bactria and Parthia emerge from Seleucid lands

        The Ptolemaic Kingdom
In this era, Ptolemy rules with great foresight, though not with military genius; he is, however, likely to be a prime beneficiary of the strife of the Diadochi should the Seleucids be worsted in any war. And should he secure the islands of the Eastern Mediterranean, it may be his tesserakonteres that loom on the Phocaean horizon.

Lysimachos is famed to have been thrown to a lion as capital punishment by Alexander the Great, but slew the beast and was subsequently added to the conqueror’s companions. 
Lysimachos got a part of the Argead empire with bad land and badass Thracian troops to back up his portion of the Alexandrian army. He has subjects in the Odrysian Kingdom and all up the Black Sea Coast, providing him with dangerous light infantry to screen his phalangites.

Overlord of several small neighboring Illyrian and Greek states, but a shadow of its dynamism under Philip and Alexander.

Allied with the large Taulantian tribe of Illyrians to the north; tendency to alliance with Macedonia. They seek to expand west, away from the empires.

Major Hellenic polities within the Empires
Egypt: Alexandreia, Naukratis, Memphis (Momemphis), Serapieion, Dionysias, Philoteris
Antigonid Kingdom: Antigoneia, Antiocheia, Apollonia Palaistinas, Samaria, Pella Orontou, Nisibyn, Doura Europos (along the Euphrates)
Seleukid Empire: Seleukeia Megale, Artemita, Sittake, Apameia, Kelonai, Nikaia Nialia, Antiocheia Persidos, Apameia Rhagiane, Hekatompylos, Zranka, Alexandreia Drangiane, Alexandreia Opiane, Alexandreia Areiois, Alexandreia Kaukasou, Seleukeia Hedyphonte, Paraitakene,  Apologos, Alexandreia Sousiane (the last two on the Persian Gulf)

Bactria: Alexandreia Oxou, Oskobara, Alexandreia Margiane, Alexandreia Eschate 
Maurya: Alexandrou Limen (on the coast), Alexandreia en Indos, Alexandreia Nikaia and adjacent city of Boukephalia

Hellenism is a noteworthy characteristic because the Phocaean League will find it easier to integrate polities with the following characteristics: Independent (or recently-independent) city-state, Hellenic core population (not Hellenic domination of foreign population, as in the Thracian kingdom and many Diadochi cities), coastal, republic. Participation of other types of polities is highly-conditional and to be regarded as temporary unless there is some exceptional bonding experience between the League and the polity in question.

The Diadochi as of 304 BC
Titles from Wikipedia.
Laomedon governing Syria and Phoenicia
Argead general. Conquered by Ptolemy.
Philotas looking after Cilicia
Argead general. Ruined by the Argead regent Perdiccas, distributor of the regions; Antigonos ends up annexing his realm. 
Peithon taking Media
Alexandrian companion. Tricked into coming to Antigonos’s court and executed. Much of his land ended up in Seleucid hands.
Antigonus gaining the governorship of Pamphylia and Lycia
Argead general. Seized many realms; currently 78 years old. Historically, killed fighting other Diadochi a few years after game start; outcome is up to GM.
Leonnatus with Phrygia
Alexandrian companion. Killed in battle against Athenians. Realm is currently broken up into Bithynian, Thracian, and Median factions, as well as Antigonid territory, both directly-ruled and subjugated Greek city-states
Neoptolemus with Armenia
Argead Royal Guardsman. Extremely able warrior, less so leader and statesman, wrought havoc in Armenia. Slain in single combat by fellow successor Eumenes of Cardia during battle. Armenia became independent under the Orontid dynasty. 
Ptolemy as governor of Egypt
Argead general; held many realms. Eventually held Cyprus, Cyrenaica, Crete, and the western Greek cities of Anatolia.
Eumenes of Cardia as governor of Cappadocia and Paphlagonia
Alexandrian secretary and commander. Fought many battles, eventually defeated and executed by Antigonos. Cappadocia ends up Antigonid vassal, Paphlagonia becomes independent.
Lysimachus becomes governor of Thrace
Currently a contender; eventually killed in battle against Seleucus, who annexed his realm until his own assassination

The more remote provinces were generally left with whoever was ruling them at the time of Alexander’s death.
Taxiles and Porus are to rule over their kingdoms in India
Taxiles was a Punjabi ruler co-opted by Alexander and left in charge of his realm until it was conquered by Chandragupta
Porus was a Punjabi warrior conquered by Alexander but subsequently retained as a satrap until he was murdered by Eudemus; his realm met the same fate as Taxiles.
Oxyartes rules Gandhara
Sogdian or Bactrian nobleman, father-in-law of Alexander (Roxana was his daughter). His realm eventually became part of the Mauryan Empire.
Sibyrtius governs Arachosia and Gedrosia;
Alexandrian officer, his realm eventually became part of the Seleucid Empire and was traded to the Mauryans.
Stasanor rules in Aria and Drangiana;
Argead officer, eventually conquered by Seleucus; Aria became part of the Seleucid Empire, and long after that, of the Parthian
Philip controls Bactria and Sogdiana;
Conquered by Peithon and put to death, annexed by Seleucids
Phrataphernes rules Parthia and Hyrcania;
Persian ruler who surrendered to Alexander and retained satrapy of his realm and served as a subject, defeating other regional rebels and powers on Alexander’s behalf. His satrapy went to Philip on his death and became part of the Seleucid empire
Peucestas governs Persis;
Argead officer, great warrior but poor commander, defeated alongside Eumenes and captured; fell into Antigonid hands, then Seleucid
Tlepolemus is left in charge of Carmania;
Alexandrian companion, eventually conquered by Seleucus
Atropates governs northern Media;
Persian nobleman, fought at Gaugamela, thereafter surrendered to Alexander, retained satrapy, his family would rule Media Atropatene (between Armenia and the Seleucid realm) for centuries, and he is in power at game start. His realm will pass in and out of Seleucid vassalage.
Archon of Pella controls Babylonia;
Argead officer, killed in battle against the regent Perdiccas’ forces, Babylonia ends up in Seleucid hands
Arcesilas rules northern Mesopotamia
His realm eventually became a part of the Seleucid empire.

        The Metastasization of the Empires
Rome will play no role in the future. As such, the Diadochi will continue to consolidate and expand. Even if the Phocaean League defeats Carthage or binds her in iron chains of trade, the eyes of the Hellenic despots of the east will eventually turn upon Phocaean waters.

Here are likely and threatening developments among Carthage the Diadochi:

Carthage securing footholds all over Spain, eventually boxing in the core Phocaean cities by creating fastnesses in Cisalpine Gaul, overthrowing Syracuse with aid of Iberian, Gallic, and Nuragic mercenary armies, delivering ultimatums to the Phocaean League that it must cease the use of Balearic, Iberian, and Gallic mercenaries, and trade in Carthaginian-aligned ports upon terms that the Carthaginians will dictate.

Carthage and Syracuse are the only imperial powers who could realistically be negotiated with to rally against the Diadochi; neither will ever give up the dream of being the primary power in the Western Mediterranean without being totally defeated, however.

Antigonus will likely die of old age or battle, with the Seleucids conquering Syria and the Ptolemies taking possession of Cyprus, Crete, and the Cyclades.

Macedon subjugating Greece and the Illyrian, Thracian, and Dacian highlands, gaining massive auxiliary forces of skilled pirates and raiders, before subjugating the Illyriote Greeks and marching into Italy.

The Seleucids completing their domination of Anatolia, seizing Armenia and taking the Caucuses, securing allowing them to properly fortify their borders.

The Ptolemies taking the Phoenicia, Judea, Nabatea, Kush, Cyprus, the Cyclades, and Crete, eventually becoming the uncontested naval power of the Eastern Mediterranean and striking forth by land and sea, fully subjugating Cyrenaica and eventually contending with Carthage and Syracuse for Sicily.

Epirus either subjugated by Macedon, or being made a loose vassal before invading southern Italy

If the Thracian Kingdom of Lysimachus survives, it is likely to march north to encompass much of the Black Sea, taking the Bosporan Kingdom and enrolling Scythian hordes against the phalanxes of its enemies.

Pontus rising up and seizing Antigonus's shattered kingdom, subjugating Colchis and possibly the Thracian Kingdom, throwing enemies into chaos through mass-poisonings carried out by Hellenized operatives nevertheless loyal to the Pontic throne, assuming control of Armenia by poisoning the ruling family and claiming Persian successor legitimacy. The Pontic kingdom proper will be proclaimed in 281BC; if left unchecked, it may go on to seize Colchis, Atropane, and beyond.

National Symbology and Naval Patterns

Uniformity is often low among the armies of Classical Antiquity; the following symbols can be used on a unit's image to indicate its allegiance. They may also optionally be used to mark a city or settlement's allegiance.
Aesthetics are stylized a la Caligula.
Some symbols have red and black variants which differ from the underlying color scheme; these are intended for use under Antigonid domination, but might be retained at the preference of locals once the Antigonid Empire contracts.
The ships convey the most common paint and sail color schemes of the faction or nation.

The Phocaean League

The Carthaginian Empire



The Illyrians






Antigonid Empire


Rhodes and the Nesiotic League

Pontus and the Mithridatic Kingdom

Ptolemaic Kingdom

Seleucid Empire

Select Additional Symbols

Art - First Run