This is for all those who have a hard time getting this (kinda luck based) achievement. It may take a couple of restarts to get it (it still has an element of random as the AI needs to choose the proper option during an event) but it won't be much of a hassle as you only need a couple of (in-game) years to get it. Skip to "What to do" if you're not new to Europa Universalis.
Guide to Get Cherrypicking Achievement
How It Works
What you need
- One 3 stars general (not admiral!) from one of your Daimyos. It doesn't matter which one.
How to conscript a Daimyo's general
- "Subjects" menu -> click the subject in question -> choose the "Conscript General" option.
- A Daimyo that has a 3 stars general (d'oh!).
- Being the Shogun in order to have vassals (Daimyos) and the option to conscript a general. Starting as one (Ashikaga) eliminates the need to become one through conquest.
At least one Daimyo needs to have a lot of Army Tradition (AT). Most likely one will blob out before getting enough AT to get a 3 stars general. Once a Daimyo gets too big their liberty desire will get over 50% thus preventing you from being able to get a conscript a general.
Even if you play a tall game and get ideas/tech to keep your Daimyos in check it's very unlikely you'll succeed using this strategy (in my campaign, no Daimyo got a 3 stars general by 1550).
Daimyos get an event called "Foreign Military Expert". More on how it works here: Foreign Military Expert[eu4.paradoxwikis.com]
Long story short, this event gives one a 100 AT general (3 stars) if one is at war and has less than 20 AT. November 11th 1444 is the perfect start as no Daimyo has more than 20 AT. This means ~20 chances to get a 3 stars general (each Daimyo has a chance to get that event).
All that's left is to get yourself in a war. You should do this right away (December 11th 1444) in order to prevent the Daimyos from fighting each other.
What to Do
- Start as Ashikaga. You do this for the achievement, not a proper campaign. Ideas and any long term strategy are irrelevant. You need to be the Shogun to get a general from a Daimyo so it's best to get this out of the way before the game starts (+ it shortens the time to get the achievement as there's no conquering to be done).You may continue playing if you want but I find playing a Daimyo more entertaining than starting as the Shogun.
- Select Ming as your rival in order to get a valid CB on someone.
- On December 11th 1444 (it's a must in order to prevent Daimyos starting their own wars) declare war. You don't need to win it. You don't event need to move your units. Your Daimyos will do something, Ming will probably land a stack on So. No worries, you just need to keep the war going until the above mentioned event kicks in.
- Watch out for "Interesting countries" events (see below, use those filters) and once Foreign Military Expert triggers (and one of the Daimyos gets the general - the luck/random part of this strategy) check your Daimyos/map for a 3 stars general. Conscript him and done!
If Everything Went Well
If the AI chose not to troll you, you should get this:
As you can see, you can get this pretty early (1446 in my case). Just keep the war going for several years. If the Universe hates you simply restart and try again.