HoI4 Dev Diary - The Imperial Japanese Navy (AAR)

HoI4 Dev Diary - The Imperial Japanese Navy (AAR)

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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

minimouse007

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With the loss of 4/6 of your fleet carriers, it seems a forgone conclusion that, while you might be able to take out Dutch Indonesia, there will shortly be a point where American production overpowers you and your 2 fleet and 4 light carriers face around 8-10 US Fleet Carriers, which will destroy any other offensive naval power you have.

That was a complete defeat, comparable to Midway. Also, as Japan, 100% of all of my naval xp before war with the Allies gets saved and then used for the Shokaku class carriers in 1940. I understand things are different now that you have to use naval xp now to design all of your ships. I don't know, I think this puts you in an even more precarious situation, but to win the war means to win at sea, and that means carrier power. Nothing else even comes close to it. I would have started designing those cruisers and destroyers with the war xp, not the xp leading up to it. You also used to get chunks of xp from focuses. I am not sure how much that has changed with WtT though.

Anyhow, my last paragraph is all moot because this was basically a DD describing what you can do now with MtG, and I fully get that. I'm just pointing out my strategy to win with the Japanese navy. Putting 120+ aircraft on my Shokaku fleet carriers is, or was my main strategy when it comes to Japanese fleet designs.
you actually described how ww2 went for the ijn, quite accurately.
 

Meglok

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Lots to like here, if you read carefully. I especially like the downtime for repairs that require NIC. Do you keep up naval production, or do you devote a lot of your NIC to dry docks to get your ships out of the body and fender shop?

Early Italy, England, and Japan are going to be an interesting juggle between construction and training. Hopefully the ai will manage that decently.
 

krios41

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Alright, wich suit do i have to hold hostage/bribe in order to get a release date?
This expansion looks like its going to be tremendous amounts of fun and the game just looks bland AF without this.

Please gib
 

Riekopo

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Can you tell your fleet to retreat if the situation looks bad?
 

Jamey

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Hello, and welcome back to another Dev Diary from the frozen wasteland that is Sweden in January. Today, we will have another short AAR of a naval warfare scenario, similar to the one we did earlier about raiding and submarine warfare.
Thanks for this DD. It's a great way to show off how all of the features are working together. :)
 

Radu

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That they chose a MP session to showcase says a lot about the level of AI competency to expect. You'd think the debacle with Stellaris would have resulted in lessons learned.
 

Star Foth

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Tanks will require fuel?

At long last Big Bob spam might be balanced.
 

DeusBellum

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are there going to be any changes made to naval bombers or they stay the same as they are now?
 

llib

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Hm, on the first sight, I don't se fire range in the stats... or was that changed and covered in earlier dev diaries? I browsed back to some of them but can't find anything quickly...
 

REDDQ

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Hello, and welcome back to another Dev Diary from the frozen wasteland that is Sweden in January. Today, we will have another short AAR of a naval warfare scenario, similar to the one we did earlier about raiding and submarine warfare.


This was played as an MP game between me and Niall (@Ceebie), with me defending the Empire of Japan’s honor against Niall’s filthy American imperialists.


Starting as Japan, I immediately face a number of issues that should sound very familiar: I have very limited resources, particularly in terms of oil. This is now a much bigger issue as I can still happily build ships and airplanes and tanks, but I won’t be able to run them for free. However, if I want to upgrade my ships (and knowing Niall, I absolutely do), I will need naval experience, and China is unlikely to provide me with a lot of it. So I need to run training missions for my fleet, which gobbles up fuel at a rapid pace (I could only take out my main fleet units for a few brief weeks before the fuel situation became critical).


View attachment 446333


At the same time, while I could trade for more oil, it will cost civilian factories which I desperately need to build up my own industry or to trade for steel to continue my military buildup. I decided to keep the trading for oil to a minimum in order to more quickly build up my industry and increase the size of my fleet.


View attachment 446334

My first target is, of course, China, and we start the war with them in the middle of 1937. It quickly becomes apparent that I underestimate the Chinese. Fighting rages hard along the border for several weeks, and a number of naval landings that attempt to force the AI to draw troops away from the main front are quickly contained by local garrisons, but at least not pushed back into the sea. Part of the problem is that the fleets tasked with invasion support contain some of my battleships, which eat up absurd amounts of fuel, and my attempts to turn the tide through prolific use of air support eat into my fuel supplies even more.


By early 1938, we are slowly grinding forward and have managed to inflict serious casualties on the Chinese, but my fuel stockpile has shrunken to just 30 days of current use. I curtail air support to only support my main thrust and send the naval forces providing shore bombardment back to port. Progress slows, but eventually we link up with the landing forces, at least saving me from an embarrassing early defeat. The massive amounts of Land XP also allow me to run through the doctrine tree quite a bit faster than Niall could ever hope to. Sadly the war in the Pacific will not be fought on land.


View attachment 446335


It would take until early 1941 for the Chinese to fall, even though the writing is on the wall by the middle of 1940. I blame the poor infrastructure and awful terrain in China - my leadership is, after all, beyond any reasonable doubt.


In the meantime, Niall has been quietly modernizing his fleet and has started his rearmament. While a good amount of his effort is spent on helping out the British in Europe, I have no doubt that he has something in store for me. While I was deeply engaged in managing the war in China, I received some out-of-game intelligence (Niall bragging in the kitchen that his destroyer swarms would annihilate me) that makes me realize that my fleet lacks some key capabilities. The starting Japanese light cruisers are fairly mediocre, most have been built during the 20ies and are not up to the task of winning a firefight against the likes of a Brooklyn Class cruiser with no less than 3 light cruiser battery modules. What I do have is a lot of torpedoes, and I invest a little into researching upgraded torpedoes and better launchers. The Japanese Long Lance national spirit gives me another perk, as it negates the enemy screening to an extend, which means that my torpedoes can hit his capitals even through 100% screening.


View attachment 446336


So while I was slowly grinding my way across China, I also decided on my buildup strategy:


  • No new battleships, since they eat up a lot of fuel and I have enough to cover my carriers. However, I did later decide to build at least one Yamato-class as an insurance against Niall developing modern battleships.

  • A force of 4 light carriers. Japan starts with two (Ryujo and returning fan favourite Hosho), with two Zuhio class building. While these only carry 40 planes each, they will be used to provide cover for operations in and around the Dutch East Indies.

  • A force of 4 fleet carriers, with another force of 4 joining later. Akagi and Kaga will be joined by 2 more Soryu class carriers and form the main strike force in the Central Pacific.

  • A heavy emphasis on air defense and torpedoes. After researching dual purpose main armaments, I design a new destroyer class with improved AA and better torpedo armament. These are joined by a quartet of light torpedo cruisers from the Japanese focus.

  • Lots and lots of Naval Bombers to damage the enemy during the approach and pick off stragglers. Once the battle is fought, his damaged ships would likely try and find a close naval base for repairs, so having naval bombers ready to attack them in port would let me finish them off.

  • Once I identified the fleet’s weakness in defense against destroyers, I also designed a version of the Mogami Class heavy cruisers dedicated to light gun support. I built another 4 of these.

View attachment 446337
The fleet’s main objective, however, is to provide support for landings to seize resource rich areas in the Dutch East Indies. To protect the sea lanes to and from these islands, I will need to secure the Philippines, and that is where things get a little dicey.


While I have little doubt that my forces can take over Sumatra, Java and Borneo, Malaya might be a tough nut to crack, and I know that Niall has already started to fortify the Philippines. I have researched amphibious armor well in advance and with China now pacified, I start to turn up production in an attempt to give my marines a bit more punch and hopefully allow me to seize a foothold even against heavy opposition.

View attachment 446339
Thinking ahead, I also research improved naval bombers and the next generation of carrier planes. Once my main objectives are secured, I will use swarms of naval bombers to hold them down while I move my fleets to stage two and take on Australia.


To give myself some more time to buildup, I delay my attack on the US until early 1942. This allows me to form a second strike force of two fleet carriers (Shokaku and Zuikaku, both repeat Soryus as I was unable to scrape together enough XP to design an upgraded carrier).


The first battles are very encouraging. Whenever my patrols find one of his scouting units, my strike fleets sortie and make short work of them, Niall’s vaunted Destroyer swarms being no match for my upgraded cruisers and destroyers. I am somewhat confident that I can attrit his screening forces faster than he can replace them, which would eventually force his fleet to remain in port or eat absurd numbers of torpedoes.

View attachment 446340

Things quickly turn a little chaotic as my strike fleets and patrols intercept a number of troop convoys. While I first thought that these were going to the Philippines, they instead turn out to be trying to seize islands in the Central Pacific. Things don’t go well for him, as he has decided to keep his battleships and carriers on strike duty instead of covering his invasion convoys. Several divisions are effectively destroyed at sea, and the remains fail to gain any footholds.


At the same time, my invasions in the DEI, supported by the old battleships Ise and Hyuga, have run into stiff opposition while attempting to land in Borneo. I shift some tactical bombers into the theater to help break the stalemate, and we are starting to make progress. The two-pronged assault succeeds in establishing a foothold, but it is a reminder that Niall has not been idle and is ready to fight for every inch of ground in this vital area.

View attachment 446341

While my marines still struggle to make landfall in the Philippines, a bigger drama unfolds in the Bismarck Sea. Niall has finally unleashed his main strike force, after one of his patrols found my carrier fleet.


The Battle of the Bismarck Sea does not go particularly well for the Imperial Navy. With several battleships detached for minor repairs, the US Navy breaks through my screening units and manages to do an end run on my carriers, sinking all four for no capital ship loses on their side. The survivors straggle home, many ships badly damaged during the ferocious engagement as my battle line attempted to screen against the full might of the US battlefleet.

View attachment 446342
However, Niall’s victory has come at a steep cost. Most of his battlefleet is badly damaged, and he has nothing to follow his success up with. More than that, I still have 6 carriers in reserve (2 fleet, 4 light), and several hundred naval bombers scouring the Bismarck Sea means that he has to risk his battleships again to sail them to safer harbours for repairs. Several of them take further damage as they retreat, many of them out of the battle for almost a year.

View attachment 446344
While Niall has blunted my offensive power quite severely, he has nothing to interfere with in my operations in the DEI, which were the main objective. Trying to use the Philippines as an unsinkable aircraft carrier has become next to impossible as trying to supply it with fuel would cost him too many convoys and tank his war support. The Japanese conquest of the southern resource area won’t quite be the lightning strike it was in history, but it is as inevitable as the rising of the sun.

View attachment 446345
With hindsight, my performance in the naval war thus far comes down to:

  • Lack of radar allowing Niall to get the drop on me in a critical moment

  • Lack of training due to fuel concerns

  • Insufficient coverage of the seazones with naval bombers failing to disrupt the enemy on the approach

  • Not enough screening vessels to protect my carriers against his battle fleet. Although Yamato sunk several ships and survived to fight another day, spending the same amount of 3 heavy cruisers would likely have yielded better results

  • Good performance of my light forces when engaged on equal terms

That is all for today. Tune in at 1600 CET for another stream with an indepth look at fuel.
And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how you build hype!
 

Indyclone77

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Awesome Diary, It proved the superiority of Japanese Strategy and that nothing ever went wrong at all...
 

C1 Ariete

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  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • Hearts of Iron IV: La Resistance
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Crusader Kings II: Monks and Mystics
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Stellaris Sign-up
  • Hearts of Iron IV Sign-up
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Stellaris
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
And that's how, dear kids, I sold HOI 3 again only by adding some visual flavour to it :D
 

Idle America

First Lieutenant
29 Badges
May 27, 2013
217
73
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
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  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
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  • Prison Architect: Psych Ward
  • Prison Architect
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Europa Universalis IV: Golden Century
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  • Europa Universalis IV: Rule Britannia
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization
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  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mare Nostrum
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Europa Universalis IV: Third Rome
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
Well heck, looks like Naval Combat is actually going to be worth paying attention to, instead of just being there!

Also, I would be fine with AARs like this instead of dev diaries, if they were released more frequently; gives me something to tie me over while I wait.
 

Telenil

Lt. General
38 Badges
May 10, 2015
1.311
674
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Imperator: Rome Sign Up
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
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  • Crusader Kings II
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
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  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
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  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Europa Universalis IV: Mandate of Heaven
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rule Britannia
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: Third Rome
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Steel Division: Normand 44 Sign-up
  • Hearts of Iron IV Sign-up
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Field Marshal
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Hearts of Iron IV: La Resistance
Great DD, a pleasure to read!
 

EltharionDrax

Captain
56 Badges
Jul 12, 2014
323
1
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Hearts of Iron IV Sign-up
  • Stellaris: Distant Stars
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Colonel
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Tyranny: Archon Edition
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Crusader Kings II: Monks and Mystics
  • Steel Division: Normandy 44
  • BATTLETECH
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Crusader Kings III
  • Tyranny - Bastards Wound
  • Age of Wonders III
  • Imperator: Rome Sign Up
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Stellaris: Humanoids Species Pack
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife Pre-Order
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife
  • Stellaris
  • Victoria 2
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Pillars of Eternity
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Stellaris - Path to Destruction bundle
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Knights of Pen and Paper 2
Let's just say someone's gonna eat their shoe.

In seriousness, we are in the final stages of nailing down a release date. It is not just up to the team.
Is it safe to say that if we are still talking about MtG at PDXCon, something has gone very, very wrong? ;)
 

Lord Cuddlesworth

Second Lieutenant
59 Badges
Aug 2, 2015
129
35
  • Crusader Kings III
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  • Crusader Kings II: Horse Lords
  • Crusader Kings II: Conclave
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Cadet
  • Crusader Kings II: Reapers Due
  • Cities: Skylines - Natural Disasters
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Together for Victory
  • Crusader Kings II: Monks and Mystics
  • Prison Architect
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Stellaris: Synthetic Dawn
  • Crusader Kings II: Jade Dragon
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Stellaris: Apocalypse
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife Pre-Order
  • Cities: Skylines - Parklife
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Stellaris: Distant Stars
  • Crusader Kings II: Holy Fury
  • Imperator: Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: Way of Life
  • Mount & Blade: With Fire and Sword
  • Cities: Skylines
  • Victoria 2
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Crusader Kings II: Sunset Invasion
  • Crusader Kings II: Sons of Abraham
  • Crusader Kings II: The Republic
  • Crusader Kings II: Rajas of India
  • Crusader Kings II: The Old Gods
  • Crusader Kings II: Legacy of Rome
  • Crusader Kings II: Charlemagne
  • Crusader Kings II
  • Cities in Motion 2
  • Crusader Kings II: Sword of Islam
  • Knights of Pen and Paper +1 Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • For the Motherland
  • Semper Fi
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Magicka
I gotta say, I absolutely cannot wait to try my own hand at managing the glory of the Japanese Empire once this comes out.