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EU4 formable nations - a guide to creating new nations in Europa Universalis 4

Here's what you need to know to form a new nation in strategy game EU4

North America in EU4 showing formable colonial nations

So, you want to learn about EU4’s formable nations? Europa Universalis IV is one of Paradox Interactive’s premier grand strategy games. It’s perhaps become a bit clunky in its old age in the face of more modern siblings such as Crusader Kings III or Imperator: Rome, but it’s still one of the leading historical strategy games.

One secret to the game’s success is how you can form other nations during the course of a single playthrough. For example, you may start as England, but then work to form the United Kingdom, or form Russia as one of the early proto-states in the area. Given that the game spans several hundred years of history, it has to account for the emergence of new entities – many historical, although some more fantastical – that arose during this time period.

Given the game has no inherent victory conditions other than a bare-bones scoring system and a simple mandate of ‘not losing’, it can actually be a pretty exciting in-game challenge to try and form one of these emergent nations. But creating these new entities isn’t easy, and there are a few things you’ll need to know first. Credit to the Paradox wiki, which already has a decent resource on this subject.

EU4 formable nations – basics

While many formable nations come with specific requirements, generally speaking most formable nations follow the same rules:

  • The desired formable does not exist already
  • The former (player or AI) is at peace
  • The former’s admin tech level at least 10
  • The former is not a non-tributary subject
  • The former is not a steppe horde

Finally, the former must own and core certain provinces which will be unique to the formable nation. Some of these may also be owned by non-tributary subjects, and when you form the new nation both you and your subject will combine together.

EU4 formable nation Qing, from the formable nations mod

EU4 formable nation types

Apart from the standard formable nations, there are several other types of formable nations as well.

Former colonial nations

There are 26 former colonial nations that can be formed after a colonial nation has achieved independence. This includes nations such as Australia and the United States, but can also include individual US states (such as California), and many South American nations.

A country can only form one of these nations during any given play through, and most of the colonial nations don’t come with their own unique idea trees or events, making this a largely cosmetic change.

Pirate nations

There are six pirate nations that can only be formed via a special event where the player gets to choose to release it as an independent nation, release it as a march, or play the country as a newly released independent nation and carry on your game.

Related: The best pirate games on PC

The pirate nation of Tétouan is the exception, as it has an existing core in the 1444 start.

Federation countries

There are also seven countries that can be formed with the ‘Federal Constitution’ federation advancement, and this largely covers First Nation polities in America. Which country gets formed depends on the player’s primary culture at the time of formation:

  • Creek (Creek)
  • Huron (Huron)
  • Illiniwek (Illini)
  • Iroquois (Iroquois)
  • Potawatomi (Anishinabe)
  • Shawnee (Shawnee)
  • Sioux (Dakota)

If you have any other culture that has access to the Federal Constitution, you can form a custom nation with its own name and flag.

Re-formable countries and end-game tags

There are plenty of nations that exist at the 1444 start date, but that might end up getting destroyed if the game takes an a-historical tangent. These nations can be re-formed though by the player if the right conditions are met. There are 19 re-formable nations, and the list is a bit eclectic although there are some obvious candidates in there.

Related: Five strategy games like Civilization

There are also 29 polities – formable and existing – that are designated as ‘end-game tags’. This means that if you form any of these nations, you are not then allowed to form any other nation even if you meet the prerequisites, with only a handful of exceptions.

This means no forming the Holy Roman Empire as the Roman Empire, or reforming the Papal States should it ever disappear from the map. The full list can be found on the Paradox wiki. There is a similar rule in place for certain German regional tags, where a select group of polities cannot form other German states even if they meet the prerequisites, with the only exception being forming Prussia.

A wide shot of EU4's map, showing several formable nations such as Russia

EU4 formable nations

Here is the full list of the 66 basic formable nations in EU

  • Algiers
  • Andalusia
  • Aotearoa
  • Arabia
  • Armenia
  • Bavaria
  • Bharat
  • Bukhara
  • Commonwealth
  • Dalmatia
  • Deccan
  • Egypt
  • Franconia
  • Germany
  • Golden Horde
  • Great Britain
  • Greece
  • Hanover
  • Hawai’i
  • Hindustan
  • Holy Roman Empire
  • Iceland
  • Ilkhanate
  • Inca
  • Ireland
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Jerusalem
  • Kurland
  • Lanfang
  • Lotharingia
  • Malaya
  • Manchu
  • Marathas
  • Maya
  • Mongol Empire
  • Mughals
  • Nagpur
  • Nepal
  • Netherlands
  • Persia
  • Pomerania
  • Prussia
  • Punjab
  • Qing
  • Rajputana
  • Romania
  • Roman Empire
  • Rûm
  • Russia
  • Ruthenia
  • Sardinia-Piedmont
  • Scandinavia
  • Shan
  • Siam
  • Silesia
  • Sokoto
  • Spain
  • Swabia
  • Tibet
  • Tripoli
  • Tuscan
  • Two Sicilies
  • Viti
  • Westphalia
  • Yuan

Any unique requirements for forming the above can also be found on the Paradox wiki.

EU4 Formable Nations: Reworked Mod

Last but not least, it’s worth pointing out that there’s a mod that completely reworks formable nations, adding in new options and reworking existing ones to work better with the new options. It’s actually an overhaul of a previously popular mod on the same subject – Basic Mods: Formable Nations, but with more depth and new content.

Related: The best EU4 mods

To get the most out of this mod you’ll want to own the Dharma EU4 DLC, but it does work without it. It’s currently compatible up to version 1.30.