So I promised you guys this, so I'll give ya it
So, right, Sweden. Glorious land of meatballs and people who say BORK BORK BORK a lot. At the start, nothing really special, aside from being under a personal union. In 1444, and hence at the start of the game, Sweden was under the Kalmar Union AKA Denmark holding Norway and Sweden with an iron fist and being dicks. The union will end if I rebel, there's no heir to Denmark's throne, or Denmark has negative prestige. I take a mission to convert Lappland (easy enough) and start preparing myself to -
Wait hold on:
I forgot Denmark was having some troubles with pretender rebels. I cross my fingers for them to succeed, as it'll tank Denmark's prestige.
No such luck. They go out with a wimper. Ah well. It bought me a little more time and cost Denmark some cash and men. Plus I need to wait for Lithuania to get PU'd with Poland - otherwise their alliance with Denmark would spell DISASTER for any attempted independence war.
It happens. I've lucked out. Time to exploit the fuck out of how independence wars work.
First thing I did: ditch nearly every ship for a galley. Then parked my schoolbus of oars in the Kattergat and cut Denmark's armies in half. It takes a while - a long while - but I'm finally able to enforce the demands I actually wanted: All my god damn cores you son of a bitch. Independence now would doom me to an assreaming from the Kalmar union and Muscovy later on.
This looks better, don't you agree? Novogrod got fucked the hell up by Muscovy. Worrying, but I can deal with it.
By 'deal with it' I mean of course, Taking some delicious clay from the Republic, after a short and successful independance war from our masters in Denmark. This (including a laughably failed attempt to take Danzig from the Teutonic Order) is enough to tank the prestige of Denmark enough to let the Kalmar Union self destruct on the death of Christopher von Wittlesbach the Third, or better known as the 'Swedish whipping boy' for how badly we kicked his ass twice in a row. We welcome our newfound free Scandinavian brethren with a collar, and a short war later, Norway is a vassal of Sweden. I'm in control of 2/3 of the Kalmar 'Union' now with this, and about to fucking bring the pain to whoever the fuck I want.
An alliance with Poland later, and I'm starting to show why Russia will never be formed to Muscovy - because I'm breathing down their necks with a desire for land/hot russian bitches. Or more accurately, to take Russia down a peg and force them into a secondary power in the Baltic. This should teach them to ally with Denmark. (Also yes I did occupy Moscow. I like to think my god tier general walked in and installed Ikea furniture everywhere, to teach the Muscovites who's their new fucking impossible to put together overlord. I just steal a province from them to seal their access to the Baltic off, then force them to pay me monies for wasting my time killing 90% of their peasants, plus force them to release the Kingdom of Perm to cut their domain in half. They'll still be able to colonize to Siberia, but this will make them far more likely to get fucked by the Hordes because the majority of their troops are in the west.
And here's where I stopped. It's only 1509, and shit is already getting real. The Protestant Reformation has overtaken several nations, the power of the Holy Roman Empire fading as the Danes take on the Hanseatic League - and keep annoyingly fucking winning. Burgundy still exists, having survived past its risk of the Burgundian Inheritance event firing and splitting them between Austria and France. Which sadly has let France expand like a motherfucker into the Low Countries. The Big Blue Blob is starting to form, and god help us all if they manage to make inroads into Germany.