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This article is accurate for the latest versions of EU3, Napoleon’s Ambition, In Nomine, Heir to the Throne and Divine Wind.

Advisors, are figures you can hire to give added benefits to your realm. For instance, some advisors increase the amount of infamy you lose per year (diplomats), while others increase your compete chance for merchants or make additional monthly investments to a technology. Advisors have levels ranging from 1 to 6, with a higher number denoting a more powerful or efficient advisor. In addition, some decisions and events require the presence of some particular type of advisor.

Hiring advisors

When you start a new game, there will be a number of historical advisors to hire to your court. Some may be part of your court already, and others may be available for hire. Up to three advisors may be hired at one time. In Divine Wind and Heir to the Throne, it is possible to use Cultural tradition to recruit an advisor of any type. As the tradition increases, the better the advisors will be.

In Divine Wind, it is not possible to hire multiple advisors of the same type.

It is advisable to check for good advisors at the very beginning of the game, before you unpause. A great advisor can contribute a lot to your country's development.

Cost and Skill

The advisors you can hire to your court are rated on a skill scale from 1 (worst) to 6 (best) stars. The bonuses they provide is scaled linearly, so that an advisor with skill 4 gives twice the bonus of a skill 2 advisor.

Graph of Hiring Cost vs. Age and Stars

The cost to initially hire advisors depends on the number of stars. New advisors (0 years old) cost three times their stars, e.g., a 5-star advisor costs 15 ducats to hire. Hiring cost decreases in a linear way such that at 10 years of age they cost double their star rating, and at 20 years of age they cost their star rating. Their hiring cost will then stay fixed at one times the number of stars, regardless of how much older they are than 20 years. See the inset for a graph.

New advisors cost a one-time fee to recruit, and then a monthly upkeep. The monthly cost is always a tenth of their stars, regardless of age. For example, a 6-star advisor always costs 0.6 ducats/month. Hiring and monthly costs are subject to inflation, but are s not affected by the country you play or game difficulty.

Life expectancy

An analysis of a single savegame at endgame (1791) in v. 1.3 found that that advisors' median age was 23.3 years (average age was 25.7 years), and the oldest was 82 (N=116). This observation can be weighed against changing out a great, but aging, advisor for a young one of less stars that's liable to be snapped up. Although only one savegame was analyzed, it dovetails with the facts that advisors reach their lowest hiring price at age 20, and that new games have a large advisor pool which shrinks sharply circa 20–50 years.

First-year Exclusivity

Many nations begin the game with advisors that are exclusive to them. This means that during the first year, no other nation can hire any of these exclusive advisors. These advisors remain exclusive to their country for the first year even if that country hires and then sacks/replaces them. In fact, unless a nation begins with a few exclusive advisors, it will not be able to hire any advisors until one year from the start date.

Exactly one year after the start of the game, all advisors not hired by any nation will be put in the collective pool. This makes it a very good idea to pause at exactly this date (October 14, 1400, for a Grand Campaign start), before other nations have a chance to pick them up.

Certain decisions require a nation to employ a certain type of advisor. Unfortunately, sometimes the required advisor is not very skilled and/or the nation has no need for his particular specialty. This is where the first-year exclusivity feature becomes valuable. If a nation wants to enact an advisor-dependent decision, it can hire and then replace this advisor with a better one from the advisor pool or sack him altogether without having to worry about any of the advisors in the pool being hired by another nation during that time.

Advisors types

Europa Universalis 3 started with 12 advisor types. In Nomine added many new types, Heir to the Throne added one additional type (the Grand Marshal) and Divine Wind made no additions.

Legend: : not available; : available; : properties changed
Type EU3.gif NA.gif IN.gif HTTT.png DW.png Bonus per level since
Alderman.png Alderman IN.gif: Production efficiency: +1%
Ambassador.png Ambassador IN.gif: Diplomatic skill: +0.5
Army organiser.png Army organiser IN.gif: Land forcelimit: +4%
HTTT.png: Land forcelimit: +6%
Army reformer.png Army reformer EU3.gif: Land technology investment: +3Ducats.png monthly
Artist.png Artist EU3.gif: Stability investment: +3Ducats.png monthly
Banker.png Banker IN.gif: Interest: –1%
Collector.png Collector IN.gif: Trade efficiency: +1%
Colonel.png Colonel IN.gif: Mercenary cost: –5%
HTTT.png: Mercenary cost: –10%
      Mercenary maintenance: –5%
DW.png: Mercenary maintenance: –5%
Colonial governor.png Colonial governor EU3.gif: Colonist chance: +2%
IN.gif: Tariffs: +1%
DW.png: Tariffs: +2%
Commandant.png Commandant IN.gif: Discipline: +2%
Diplomat.png Diplomat EU3.gif: Infamy: –0.05 yearly
Grand admiral.png Grand Admiral IN.gif: Morale of navies: +0.05
Grand captain.png Grand Captain IN.gif: Morale of armies: +0.05
Grand marshal.png Grand marshal HTTT.png: Legitimacy: +1% yearly
High judge.png High judge IN.gif: National revolt risk: –0.5%
DW.png: National revolt risk: –0.3%
Inquisitor.png Inquisitor IN.gif: National spy defense: +2%
HTTT.png: National spy defense: +4%
Lord proprietor.png Lord proprietor IN.gif: Colonial growth: +2%
Master of mint.png Master of mint IN.gif: Inflation: –0.02% yearly
Recruitmaster.png Master recruiter IN.gif: National manpower modifier: +2%
HTTT.png: National manpower modifier: +4%
Fortification expert.png Military engineer IN.gif: Fort defense: +10%
Natural scientist.png Natural scientist EU3.gif: Production technology investment: +3Ducats.png monthly
Naval organiser.png Naval organiser IN.gif: Naval forcelimit: +4%
HTTT.png: Naval forcelimit: +6%
Naval reformer.png Naval reformer EU3.gif: Naval technology investment: +3Ducats.png monthly
Navigator.png Navigator IN.gif: Colonial range: +5%
Philosopher.png Philosopher EU3.gif: Prestige: +0.5 yearly
Pioneer.png Pioneer IN.gif: Colonist chance: +2%
HTTT.png: Colonist chance: +4%
Privateer.png Privateer IN.gif: Blockade efficiency: +10%
HTTT.png: Blockade efficiency: +20%
Quartermaster.png Quartermaster IN.gif: Reinforcement speed: +5%
Rear admiral.png Rear Admiral IN.gif: Navy tradition: +0.2% yearly
DW.png: Navy tradition: +0.1% yearly
Sergeant major general.png Sergeant Major General IN.gif: Army tradition: +0.2% yearly
DW.png: Army tradition: +0.1% yearly
Sheriff.png Sheriff IN.gif: National tax modifier: +1%
Spymaster.png Spymaster EU3.gif: Spy efficiency: +2%
Statesman.png Statesman EU3.gif: Government technology investment: +3Ducats.png monthly
Theologian.png Theologian EU3.gif: Missionary chance: +2.0%
IN.gif: Missionary chance: +1.0%
DW.png: Missionary chance: +0.5%
Trader.png Trader EU3.gif: Merchant compete chance: +2%
Treasurer.png Treasurer EU3.gif: Trade technology investment: +3Ducats.png monthly

Only EU3.gif, NA.gif: Note that having a Colonial Governor prevents nasty Colonial Assemblies from occurring if your stability goes below 0 after there has been a Quest for Independence (which can occur after 1750). For a typical example, see Brazilian Colonial Assembly. There are 10 possible Quests for Independence and concomitant Assemblies, so having a governor or keeping your stability high is important for large world-spanning colonial empires in the end game.

See also