HoI4 Dev Diary - Poland Focus Tree Rework Part 2/2

Hello folks and welcome back to the Poland dev-diary extravaganza! This week, I am going to continue covering the changes coming to Poland in 1.11 Barbarossa and the unannounced DLC.Today we’ll be covering the DLC content.
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So, I’m going to start here with something a bunch of you predicted last week; you can indeed play as the Peasants’ Strike! A Poland with ambitions to restore democracy or embrace the communist revolution must first build an organized peasant militia from the rabble of disorganized farmers!
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No matter how many or few states join you in the strike, the rebellious state will be in a delicate balancing act between democrats and socialists. Your first step towards revolution is to sway the Front Morges to take up the peasant’s cause, the Morges being an alliance of political parties supported by a select few Polish generals including Sikorski.
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Each focus you do in this initial block will add 5 support to either communism or democracy, with a total of 50% or more being needed for one to assert dominance over the other and take control of the government.
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Similar to the Spanish Civil War, the Peasants’ Strike will be on a tight schedule, taking up to a year before the revolution happens. Poland will at first be able to add agricultural states to the strike, but by expanding the strike to factory workers, Poland will also be able to bring states from Poland’s industrial heartland into the revolution.
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Along with contesting for popular support, gaining military support will be vital for the movement. Using decisions, certain field marshals and generals will be swayed to your cause and gain the “Peasant Sympathiser” trait, ensuring that they will join your side when the war begins.
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Poland will begin with socialist politician Stanisław Mikołajczyk as country leader, but those who wish to see the return of Wincenty Witos will be able to bring him back to leadership via event.
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Once the civil war is won, Poland will be in a vulnerable state. Recuperating manpower and resources after a civil war will place Poland in a precarious position, so some concessions and outreach for foreign assistance may be needed.
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A communist Poland will have two options: they may be bold and elect an anti-Stalinist candidate as Chairman, or they may elect the Soviet-aligned Władysław Gomułka. However, aligning with the Soviets will come at the cost of ceding Eastern Poland, but will unlock a few focuses for dealing with the USSR.

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With democracy, Poland may take advantage of the Front Morges’ ambitions for closer relations with the French and create the Morges Pact, a sort-of Poland-led Little Entente. Going down this route will allow Poland access to the Between the Seas branch we talked about last week.

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Anti-Soviet communists will be able to denounce both Capitalism and Fascism, diplomatically isolating this people’s republic, but allowing for new expansion options and military bonuses against the empires of this world. In doing so, they will gain a powerful attack and defence bonus against major powers.
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Both democrats and anti-Soviet communists will also be able to declare the destruction of fascism a greater cause than the spread of socialism and align themselves with the British Empire. Doing so will allow Poland to renew her interests in colonialism and attempt to purchase colonies from Allied powers. By officially recognising the Maritime and Colonial League, Poland can purchase Madagascar, Palestine, and more. If any of your purchases are successful, Poland will have somewhere to build their forces in exile, should the front back home fail.

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No matter which option you pick, either conquering or building alliances with the Baltic States will allow you to create a new kind of Commonwealth: the Commonwealth of Socialist Republics.

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Moving on to the next branch, we have the Regency Council: Poland’s attempt to “restore” the monarchy. The Act of the Fifth of November was the promise of the Central Powers to release a Kingdom of Poland from the occupied territories of the Russian Empire, but the Regency Council of the newly formed Kingdom of Poland failed to crown a King before Józef Piłsudski declared the Second Polish Republic.

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With the Regency Council assembled, Poland will be able to choose from one of three claimants, each with their own complete political path. There were countless claimants and candidates for the Polish throne so it was impossible for me to make content for them all, so we have: The Hohenzollern, The Commonwealth Claimant, and the Cossack-King to choose from!

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The Commonwealth Claimant is perhaps the most obvious: Poland’s preferred candidate for King was Friedrich Christian. Christian was preferred due to Poland’s long connection with the houses of Saxony, and with a claimant so supported by the Poles, you are able to claim the throne of Lithuania without the need for warfare.

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Through decisions, Poland can trend monarchist sentiment up in Lithuania, and when it reaches high enough, they may either enter a civil war or peacefully take over the government. When either case has happened, Poland can annex the Lithuanian Kingdom and begin integrating the industries of their two nations and preparing for war with the Soviets and Germans: restoring the old borders of the Commonwealth and then some!

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Poland and Romania enjoyed close relations at the start of HoI’s timeframe, and with the throne of Poland empty, Poland may throw herself into the complex mess of Romanian politics by electing a Romanian King.

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With King Michael on the throne of Poland, the Kingdoms will be able to unite under the right circumstances. Either by Polish interference or by Romania completing “King Michael’s Coup”, Romania and Poland will be united, bringing their armies together and becoming a powerful wall between the Axis and the Comintern.

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This Intermarium nation may seek Balkan Domination and a restoration of Poland-Hungary, or (as with the Commonwealth) it may seek to maintain its alignment with the Allies.

Finally, we have the most unlikely candidate for the throne: Pavel Bermondt-Avalov.
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A warlord, a cossack, and a Georgian Prince, Pavel led an interesting life of conquest and warfare. In the interwar period, Pavel and his Bermontian host invaded Lithuania and Latvia for reasons historians are still unsure of, but his ambition for Baltic domination makes him the ideal candidate for militarizing the Polish state into action and dominating the Baltics and Czechoslovakia.
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When done conquering the Baltics, Pavel will be able to either turn his militarized Polish Kingdom against the Germans and asser Poland’s claims in Silesia and Pomerania or, as a National Socialist, Pavel may wish to seek alignment with the Germans, which brings us on to the fascist branch.
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Poland was home to a multitude of fascist and nationalist movements: the most notable of which are the Endecja (or National Democracy) and the Falanga. The Sanation historically made dealings with both of these groups, and as such, if you want either Endecja or Falanga to take control, you must collaborate with the Sanation until you are able to supplant them.

When either Endecja or Falanga have taken over the government, they will have a choice to either stand firm with Polish nationalism or make concessions to the Germans and attempt to seek an alliance.
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Aligning with the Germans will not place you on equal grounds, and it is not as easy as it once was. Germany will refuse to ally with Poland unless Danzig and Poznan are surrendered and Poland becomes a German subject. Unlike Czechoslovakia though, the Poles will be able to break their shackles and tear the Reich apart from within.

With either Pavel, Piasecki, or Dmowski in control, Poland will be presented with a ladder of focuses enabling them to either gain powerful bonuses from the Germans or plot with the Underground State to overthrow their current masters.
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Going for independence will allow Poland to switch sides and stab Germany in the back, whereas remaining loyal will enable Poland to gain some cores in the USSR in a sort-of reverse Yalta Conference.
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However, a Falanga or Endecja that does not bow to the Germans will be able to lean into the Polish Catholic identity and form the Falangist International: a faction devoted to the perseverance of Falangist ideals.
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Once the Spanish Civil War is done with, if either the Carlists, Nationalists, or Falangists come out on top, Poland will be able to bring them into their own faction and from there, they will be able to expand that faction to other nations where Falangism was present such as: Mexico, the Netherlands, and much of Latin America.

They will have access to decisions to boost fascism in those nations, and with a certain percentage achieved, those nations will be invited to join the Falangist International. These focuses invite multiple nations at once, so the faction can grow very large very quickly.
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Similar to the Sanation path, the Polish fascists must choose between allying with Lithuania or attempting to reclaim the legacy of the Commonwealth, but choose wisely. Without allying Lithuania, this Poland will be unable to progress down the Between the Seas path, severely limiting their faction’s ability to expand.

That’s about it for the political paths, so I’ll wrap this one up by talking about a feature we haven’t touched in quite some time: Governments in Exile.
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Unlike France and the Netherlands, Poland does not by default have a vast colonial empire to which they may retreat when things fall apart back home, so Poland will be entirely reliant on the support and goodwill of their allies and the network of resistance fighters in the Polish Underground State.
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In exile, the Polish government went through a number of Prime Ministers and Presidents before landing on something the Allies were satisfied with. If Poland is following a historical route and is exiled in a Democratic nation like Britain or France, they will demand the resignation of the Sanation leaders, and from there, Poland may pick from one of three new leaders, each with a unique personality enabling them to gain manpower while in exile.

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On top of that, they will gain access to Irena Anders as a political adviser, granting more legitimacy, stability, and exiled manpower.

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In the exile focus tree, Poland can gain a number of offmap factories and dockyards, and bonuses to their ace generation and an increase in special forces cap. Poland will never muster a major army while exiled, but with these bonuses, Poland will still be able to keep fighting on with a small but specialised force.

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Owners of La Resistance will gain access to a slew of agency bonuses including an increase to their spy capacity, free agency upgrades via focus, and the new Warsaw Uprising operation.

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Completing the operation will trigger the Warsaw Uprising sooner than the game mechanics usually allow. With 50% resistance or higher in Polish states, the uprising can be started, but time this well as you can only complete this operation once. A well-timed uprising can shatter the German army and leave them short on supply as they attempt Operation Barbarossa.

Poland was also vital to assisting in decrypting the enigma machine, so they also gain access to the Mastermind Codebreaker advisor: Marian Rejewski.

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The old Cyclometer and Bombe focuses have been moved into the espionage branch, but I noted that without any territory left, a bonus to atomic research was fairly useless to Poland. So, when the Atomic Research focus is done, Poland gains an offmap nuclear reactor that will give roughly one nuke per year... Try not to think too hard about it.

There were a lot of interesting alternate-history scenarios for Poland to explore and new possibilities came up during my research and implementation. Though I didn’t represent everything in game (such as the proposed Japan-Polish alliance), Poland is a treasure-trove of alternate history scenarios if only you can find a way to survive.

That’s all for this week, and that wraps up the two week Poland extravaganza!
 
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Jedo

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Looks very promising! So many paths to explore. The only thing i'd suggest to change is this cossack king. Unlike other options this one just looks weird and out of place here, considering other options. I'm very suprised not to see ie Archduke Karl Albrecht, which unlike Pavel considered himself pole, volunteered and fought in polish-soviet war of 1919-1921 and during german occupation refused to sign Deutsche Volksliste. Also his father, Archduke Charles Stephen, was considered as a candidate to be regent and eventually king of Poland (this idea failed even before collapse of central powers tho :p) I'm usually just reading your posts guys, but this time i felt i could help in some way :)
Cheers and keep up the good work
 
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Kosaki MacTavish

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The Soviets should not have alternate ideology paths, they should be like Red China where you pick between flavors of communism.
Well, i mean about China:

If you want to go democratic, either complete the National China focus tree, or go as the nonaligned warlords and pray Japan goes democratic.

If you want to go communist, play as Mao or Sheng Shicai

If you want to go non-aligned, keep Chiang or play as the nonaligned warlords.

If you want to go fascist, Manchukuo is there.

I believe the devs back then in 2017 already said that, which explains why Manchukuo didn't have a communist branch, or Communist China can't go nonaligned, or Nationalists can't go communist, etc.

Also, if the devs decides to create an entirely new tag (RUS) so that we can play as non-communist Russia, i can accept that too.
 
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Matihood1

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I don’t think I will be too nitpicky here but Endecja was at least by 1936 very much fascist.
Endecja was nationalist (which is nowhere near the same as fascist) and in strict opposition to Germany. Although I think I saw meka commenting that the Endecja route isn't actually fascist.
 
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At first look, it seems like free atom bombs.
However, it's not that powerful. It's just a reactor. It still requires 1945 nuke tech to actually turn it into a bomb. (slowly) Meanwhile, as an exile government, you lost the entire homeland. You are sitting in London (which I heard is a terrible place to live. :p) can do very few things at that moment.

Personally, if I play Poland historically, I will still try to defend Poland as long as possible instead of actively go exile to get a "free" reactor and hoping some "smart" Allies AI can actually make sure I can have enough air superiority to actually throw the bomb. ( I also need to consider where to get fuel and a strategic bomb to begin with.)

In addition to that, the nuke in HOI4 is really not that OP, to begin with, it's not the real horrible weapon in real life, it's mostly just something to break enemy frontline, wiping out their organize. It's just a big firework that takes a whole year to make from that reactor.

Thus, it's not really as an overpowered focus as it looks like.

I consider it is paying respect to Joseph Rotblat, Stanislaw Ulam, and all those other Poland scientists who helped the Allies to develop nuclear weapons when their homeland is occupied by Axis.

If you are the "good guys" as the UK or the US, your ally helped you to develop nuclear weapons, will you think it's a redicious idea to donate a reactor to them while knowing they will certainly put it to good use?
Hmm, interesting.

@Rachidelson already propose to @Meka66 to turn the bonus from the Exiled Polish nuclear foci, from 1 offmap nuclear reactor into an event.

You can then use the event to either choose:
A. Give a national spirit to boost UK and USA nuclear development
B. A 1x100% tech bonus for Polish and Allied nuclear research
C. Proposal to USA to maintain its own nuclear reactor

This way, everyone can be satisfied. The historical one is obviously option A, whilst a more challenging player can either pick B or C.
 
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really I've got four major issues I think should be fixed bar the nuke thing:

  • The Pavel and Mihai ideas should be removed and replaced with Archduke Karl Albrecht like people suggested since the dude was left crippled and half-blind by the Gestapo over his love of Poland; the reasons for Pavel and Mihai not being in it have already been stated enough so I don't feel it needs repeating.
  • Put all the colonization stuff onto the right-wing or fascist trees considering the fact that stuff like the Polish Madagascar plan was designed to kick out the Jews, unless you're going to confront that this is a really terrible thing I don't think it should be in
  • Should be a decision to form Zapadoslavia, Sikorski wanted to do something similar IRL and I think it'd be a really fun counter to Poland-Romania which doesn't make any sense
  • Why is the 5th of November Act in? That was a German and Austrian treaty that Germany was planning to use as part of an ethnic cleansing scheme against Poles and Jews?
1. Keep Mihail in for the memes, and make his Polish-Romanian-Hungarian blob into a sort of confederation with Poland as the princep (Romanian and Hungarian integrated puppets for TFV owners)
2. Keep the "buying UK's colonies" stuffs in Dmowski's Poland, Falangist Poland, or Democratic UK-allied Poland. Definitely not Communist Poland for sure.
3. Wholeheartedly agree with that
4. The Poles did not know about the secret intentions back then, for all they know, 5th of November Act was a legitimate attempt to reestablish Polish Monarchy
 
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The King Mihail path has diplomatic plausibility in the game. The ''Cossack king'' one is completely out of nowhere, without any sort of rhyme or reason.

I like these so called ''meme paths'' and I like when the game goes ''insane''... but up until now they were still connected to the country and had ''some'' sort of ''plausible basis'' in history... the ''Cossack king'' makes absolutely no sense. It's a guy that was never in Poland... would never have been considered for any sort of position in Poland, it makes no sense, it needs to be scrapped! Preferably replaced with some sort of more sensible Hapsburg path.

I can't speak to the validity of the other paths, as I don't know the innerworkings of Polish politics... but there are things that just ''seem off''... and the ''Cossack king'' is the worst offense in my opinion.

EDIT: Part of me really wants to know how the idea for the ''Cossack king'' path even came about... as it really is... out of nowhere...
 
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Roundup of common suggestions:
  1. Get rid of the Russian Cossack Nazi Russian Warlord
  2. Change the off-map reactor to bonuses to major allies
  3. Add the Habsburg
  4. Other people up in arms about the intricacies of the communist / socialist organizations
I mean, these are all valid points (especially the nuclear reactor), but really, the amount of outrage here is uncalled for. Some ideas for those upset about Pavel: don't buy it, set the game to historical, or pick a polish path at game setup.

At the end of the day, this is one tree in a large DLC, with lots of trees and a large rework of land combat. If you want to nitpick about this, do that, but like, it's a couple of paths out of a large DLC.

@Meka66 great work on this tree, thanks!
 
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Right. The choice does not really exist in a single-player game.
The hero of the story is the player, it's you.
The hero bravely defended the homeland but unfortunately lost because of overwhelming enemies.

Don't consider the reactor is something for Poland. But, consider it as an Allies reactor that allowed you to use.
It's just like a spy master of the faction or the air controller in a multiplayer game.

It's only right to give the hero of the story the control of a reactor that actually can do something very meaningful instead of sending it to random NPCs in the factions and who knows where and when they will use it.
It's your story as playing Poland.

If Poland is played by AI, it does not matter either. It's just like the US built another reactor somewhere.

Thus, personally, I still consider the offmap reactor is not a bad design.
 
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henryk5pio

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The closest to the Polish crown was Karol Stefan Habsburg, archduke from the Habsburg line of Żywiec. He had several strengths that spoke in favor of him. Firstly, he knew the Polish language, secondly he considered himself a Pole, thirdly he had a property in Żywiec located within the former Polish borders, fourthly he was supported by the elites of Galicia and the Kingdom of Poland. This support was expressed, among others, by agitation campaign on his behalf. Leaflets were distributed, posters were hung. It was argued that his veins were the blood of the Piasts and Jagiellons. Months passed and the emperors of Germany and Austria-Hungary could not come to an agreement with the candidate. Although Charles Stefan Habsburg was seriously debated, imperial unanimity was lacking. The candidate himself was undoubtedly interested in the crown. Nevertheless, Charles Stefan Habsburg put forward conditions that delayed the Central Powers' decision. The Habsburg first of all demanded the dismissal of Governor-General Beseler. It was he who actually exercised power in Warsaw, so his remaining in office would only make Karol Stefan a decoration. In the end, he was not elected king, time was certainly short. The failure of the Triple Alliance and the United States' support for the creation of an independent Polish state, and finally the handover of power to Józef Piłsudski by the Regency Council, finally completed the plan to make Poland a monarchy. On November 14, 1918, Józef Piłsudski issued a decree that spoke of the Republic of Poland and the Seym as the sole creator of the rights of the nation: “By the nature of Poland's position, the government is provisional until the Legislative Seym is convened and does not allow for deep social changes that can only be passed by the Legislative Seym. Convinced that only the Seym can be the creator of the rights of the nation, I demanded that it be convened in the shortest possible time, several months. Taking into account the legally exceptional situation of the nation, I called on the President of Ministers to submit to me the project of establishing the highest representative authority of the Republic of Poland, until the Legislative Seym, including all three partitions, is convened. " Probably, if the occupiers could reach an agreement sooner and offered more than illusions, perhaps during the Second Polish Republic, a monarch would reign in Poland. It is difficult to judge whether he would ultimately be recognized by the society and whether his role would not be reduced to the notary of the republic, but the time and determination of Berlin and Vienna were not to be verified in practice.

Apart from him, the following were mentioned as candidates: Joachim Hohenzollern, son of the German emperor; Jan Henryk XV Hochberg, the prince of Pszczyna; Ludwik III Wittelsbach, King of Saxony; Leopold of Bavaria, son-in-law of the Austro-Hungarian emperor; Frederic Krystian Wettin; William Charles, Prince von Urach; Cyril, son of the Tsar of Bulgaria. There were also Polish candidates put forward or discussed, among them: Zdzisław Lubomirski, Janusz Radziwiłł, and even Józef Piłsudski.

And what we see? King of Romania, crazy Cossack warlord and only one from candidates: Frederic Krystian Wettin.

Shame

SHAME

S H A M E!

I do not require a sci-fi type of Empire of Lechia, which in Poland is a flat-earth style meme. But I am a Pole and a client of the Paradox, who was also buying EU II and HoI 1, I require historicity - if you want to give other kings, give someone from the real candidates. If you want to give us a fascist path, give the National Party, led by Roman Dmowski, remained the main formation of the National Democracy. In the Supreme Court there was a struggle between the national-liberal wing of the "old" and the "young" leaning towards authoritarianism. After the influence of the "old" was eliminated, the "young" were divided into the extremist faction of Jędrzej Giertych and the group of Tadeusz Bielecki, more willing to compromise with the Sanation.
 
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ZeDoctor1918

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While it wouldn't satiate everyone, perhaps if the devs, especially with the more meme oriented paths, shared their sources and research, people could at least maybe understand why one path was chosen over another? Even just a quick glance at a wikipedia article, the Cossack guy's page doesn't even have a single mention of Poland in it. So maybe it would do the devs some good to share the thought-process on how the decision to include this person, over the much more agreed upon Habsburg, was reached. It's been claimed they try to avoid too memey of content to avoid super silly situations, so I would be very interested to hear the reasoning for this inclusion, and how he was brought up in the first place.

Another small bother, avoiding the nuclear reactor controversy, is how is something like the uniform colors gotten wrong in the first place? Finding information on such details is not difficult, so I question how it isn't gotten correct the first time. More annoyingly, instead of responding that the issue, which should be rather simple, will be fixed, that it is merely noted and will be "looked into". Small a nitpick as it may be, it shouldn't have been wrong at all. Similar to the odd decision for Pierre Laval, well known for his practically exclusive use of white ties, was instead given some drab green suit and tie. Creative liberty, I guess? But it seems like more work to do it wrong. To my initial point, sharing the historical research that took place would maybe help lower the temperature in the room a bit.

I doubt anything in the actual tree going change, which is a shame. The negative reactions on the original post has comfortably out numbered the positive ones. I see it unlikely Paradox will admit they made a poor decision, and will probably double down on it.
 
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PurpulaPhoenixum53

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calling it now, polish tree is going to be larger than soviets

While I may have my doubts, I don't think the devs want to let us down on the USSR tree. I think the Soviet tree may be one of the largest, if not the largest, tree after its rework here. I have high hopes for it.
 
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kimidf

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Also, one more question:

Will the Arab Revolt in Palestine (1936-1939) be covered in the game? It could be a series of events or a negative modifier, for example...
I believe the Palestinian revolt will be touched or implemented in another dlc setting in the Middle East where we will surely have the subject of the British and French proctetorates in that area
 

Matihood1

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The King Mihail path has diplomatic plausibility in the game. The ''Cossack king'' one is completely out of nowhere, without any sort of rhyme or reason.

I like these so called ''meme paths'' and I like when the game goes ''insane''... but up until now they were still connected to the country and had ''some'' sort of ''plausible basis'' in history... the ''Cossack king'' makes absolutely no sense. It's a guy that was never in Poland... would never have been considered for any sort of position in Poland, it makes no sense, it needs to be scrapped! Preferably replaced with some sort of more sensible Hapsburg path.

I can't speak to the validity of the other paths, as I don't know the innerworkings of Polish politics... but there are things that just ''seem off''... and the ''Cossack king'' is the worst offense in my opinion.

EDIT: Part of me really wants to know how the idea for the ''Cossack king'' path even came about... as it really is... out of nowhere...
Please explain to me this "diplomatic plausibility". At which point in history did Hohenzollerns rule Poland? Or Poland had a personal union with Romania? By what right would he become the king of Poland? Just because Poland and Romania had good relations and a military aliance? That is nowhere near enough imho. If Poland wanted to gain control over Romania, it should work on it the good old-fashioned way and not just receive it for free because "yes".
 
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Seeing as this comes in the exile branch, an offmap nuclear production is the only way you have any hope of producing a nuke. With the research coming so late and one reactor producing such few nukes, you'll maybe get to drop one or maybe two per game. It's far from overpowered.
Honestly make it like the Bulgarian focus and give a research bonus to your faction leader for nuclear research, way less overpowered and would actually make sense.
 
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Agen1234

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Please explain to me this "diplomatic plausibility". At which point in the game did Hohenzollerns rule Poland? Or Poland had a personal union with Romania? By what right would he become the king of Poland? Just because Poland and Romania had good relations and a military aliance? That is nowhere near enough imho. If Poland wanted to gain control over Romania, it should work on it the good old-fashioned way and not just receive it for free because "yes".
Because by the games logic a regency council is electing a king and the Poland-Romania relationship has been established. And if this were the ''worst'' path of plausibility, I would still find it acceptable.
And there's enough mechanics at work in the game that it WON'T ''just receive it for free'' and I expect there will need to be at least some time and expense put into achieving that in the game as there has been with other similar things.

EDIT: I also expect there will be options for Poland and Romania to remain separate in the ''King Michael'' scenario.

My main point was aimed at the ''Cossack king'' path which makes no such sense even ''in-game'' terms.
 
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Matihood1

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Because by the games logic a regency council is electing a king and the Poland-Romania relationship has been established.
That is still nowhere near enough for him to be just elected king, especially with much more legitimate candidates. It's just pure fantasy at this point. And just because there are even worse options currently proposed, it doesn't mean this one is any more acceptable. That's the thing.
 
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