Assaulting Malta (or any other small island with a resident army)
Perhaps this is a stupid question, but I seem to be completely unable to assault Malta to fulfil Britain's victory conditions. The Knights of St. John army resident in the settlement prevents me from landing a beachhead on the nearby coast (and the entire Maltese coastline is "nearby"), and the small navy inside the port hasn't moved for dozens of turns (since long before I sailed an invasion fleet in that direction, in fact), so I cannot test to see whether I can unload via the port.
I've tried a few tricks using saved games, such as trying to gift them another territory next to one of their enemies to encourage them to move, or leaving a lone 6th Rate apparently undefended not so very far from the port, and in the opposite direction from my actual invasion fleet, but cannot find a real solution. As this makes it impossible to complete Britain's campaign, and I am sure other people have managed to complete this campaign, people must have found a solution! What is it?
Re: Assaulting Malta (or any other small island with a resident army)
Hmm, that makes sense. I have to admit I always scuttle anything under a 6th rate at the beginning of the game; the maintenance cost just doesn't seem worth it relative to the combat performance.
Sadly, I seem to have lost my saves from my old campaign where I got stuck with this problem, so it's not really practical to test it. In my new British campaign, I'm a long way from invading anything in the European sphere of operations. I am curious, doesn't the AI just move the fleet back into the harbour after the battle?