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I am planning to play Europa Universalis IV as Austria, which starts off as the HRE Emperor.

The Prince-Electors at the start of the game are Bohemia, Burgundy, Cologne, Mainz, Saxony, Trier, and The Palatinate.

Austria has five diplomacy slots available at the start of the game, and I'm thinking of allying & royal marrying Bohemia, Castille, Hungary, and Poland. That leaves one slot for a Prince-Elector (probably The Palatinate?).

Moving forward, how do I keep the Prince-Electors pleased to keep me on as Emperor?

Is it advisable early on to use more than the five "free" diplomacy slots to ally Prince-Electors, and then get the Diplomacy idea group?

Also – if a member state within the HRE is fully-annexed by a neighbour and I issue "Demand Unlawful Territory", is IA (Imperial Authority) awarded if the demand is accepted? Or do I have to release the member state through war?

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You can get alliances with Hungary, Bohemia and three of the electors, which makes re-election pretty much certain. Your problem is getting the IA you need to get the reforms passed. This requires a very active participation in internal Empire politics, especially during the reformation.

I'm playing as Austria myself at the moment and I managed to get alliances with Trier, Pfalz, Bohemia, Wurzburg and Hungary right at the start. An important point to consider here is that you want to ally the Archbishopries, since they are the most likely to stay catholic during the reformation.

Dulkan is correct that if you make sure to always be close to +100 improved relation the elections will go your way.

Dimplomatic ideas can be helpful later on, but I find that you first need to fix your dreadful economy. I ALWAYS go for trade ideas first to scure a high income and get the ability to deny income to important rivals. I'd say the five diplomatic relations are enough and going above the limit early on is unwise.

As far as unlawful territory is concerned: keep in mind that you cab only demand 1 province at a time and given the hit your relations take you will get only 1 acceptance. It is in your interest to keep the total number of member states as high as possible to grow your IA, so make sure to demand the province that will result in a state being released and not a province that will simply revert back to state that still exists.

On your original question though: you do not get IA for getting that request granted. In fact, you don't even get IA for liberating provinces through Imperial Ban wars. The mechanism of playing the emperor has become a lot more challenging in the latest releases. Still fun though!

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The same way, you keep everybody happy. Raise opinion, make alliances, royal marriages. Also protect the empire, when it's member states are attacked an don't vassalize the electors, this incurs a massive penalty with all other electors and laso costs you IA every month. PU is fine though.

Ususally it simply is a bidding war between which elector likes which nation best and with Austria you are in a prime position.

Yes, diplomacy ideas are usually a good choice, when playing within the empire.

Demand unalwful teritory: You shouldn't let it even come to that as this would imply you lost a war or refused a defensive call. In any case, it doesn't award IA, as a province you can demand unlawful territory on is already part of the empire, the current owner simply doesn't have a core on it and IA is only awared for adding new provinces to the empire.

If the demand is accepted the province returns to the original owner or to you rule, if the original owner doesn't exist anymore, but it's very unlikely to happen. ON refusal you'll get a CB and incur siginifcant penalties on the province making it fairly useless, but you also lose 1 IA.

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  • In my early testrun, Alsace fully conquered Baden (it's a OPM) and I was then given the option to Demand unlawful territory. I wasn't called to a defensive war – maybe it was already ongoing when the game started. They accepted and Baden was reinstated.
    – P A N
    Commented May 29, 2016 at 14:35
  • Ah, well, those are internal wars, You aren't called into those and member states are likely to accept demand unlawful + reinstate the original owner. What I wrote in my answer referred to outside forces, e.g. France annexing a member state.
    – Dulkan
    Commented May 29, 2016 at 15:43

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