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VILenin

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Inspired by your efforts as Portugal, I finally started up a game as a small power, something I've been meaning to do. Playing as Greece, which has about the same IC as Portugal. I've already applied many of the lessons you've learned in your game, especially in regards to managing resources (both industrial and leadership).
 

Palmyrene

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Really enjoyed your update, and I loved the writing. I like these narrative sections, they help to set the scene for me and it is always good to put the people into these events - to remember that grand strategy affects even the humblest private and even the humblest private can affect the outcome of the grandest strategy.

I so want to see those beautiful planes fulfil their potential, so really looking forward to the next update!
 

Rensslaer

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In September, we are able to deploy another infantry division (2 brigades), and immediately send it heading toward South Africa for the transit to Macao (I could use the Suez Canal, except that I don’t have a string of bases in that direction, and so my transport doesn’t have the range).

SepInhambane.jpg


Note that my officer situation is doing very well. A little investment goes a long way when I’m only producing a few units every once in a while. It’s better, really, than zeroing it out and moving the sliders back and forth.

Tensions rise, again, in October, as Germany violates its recent treaty with the Allies and seizes the rest of Czechoslovakia. This drives the Allies to bring Poland into their fold. This, ultimately, could be the cause for war.

Oct38Czech.jpg


My Energy situation is drifting lower, again, and so I take steps to remedy that, as well as to improve stockpiles in other important areas. My expectation is that time may be running out for getting resources through overseas trade, and my experience tells me there will not be a lot of resources available for trade on the Continent, since everyone concerned seems to be hoarding what they already have – they, too, expect war.

Oct38Trade.jpg


That energy trade with the US (the above screenshot is after the trade began to operate) must be supplemented with yet another in order to achieve a positive balance in Energy. This way, either can be stopped when my money supply gets too low.

Nov38Trade.jpg


Another cavalry division (2 brigades) is added to our army, and we deploy this one to the island of Sao Tome. This will be a point of departure for when war breaks out. I have no particular interest in defending Sao Tome, except as an initial start point for war.

In November, we get two breaks. The Supply Production will ease our IC cost for producing the Supplies we need (for our own stockpiles and/or for trade). I will not continue researching that, until later perhaps, but this first step is an important 5%. The Small Arms advance will come in very handy for making our infantry divisions (few, but growing in number – 2 or 3 now?) more potent and survivable in combat. Defensiveness is important on defense, and Toughness on offense, but Soft Attack is the more versatile tech, as it matters in either mode. I’ve tended to prefer Defensiveness for Garrison units, as that is their primary role, but infantry is my “multi-role” offense/defense unit, and I’m equipping them accordingly.

Nov38Macao.jpg


Macao is now quite defensible against a minor invasion. With four infantry divisions (4 brigades) and one garrison, plus an HQ. The need for all this will become apparent once war begins.

Thankfully, in December, another Industrial Production advance adds another 1 IC to my total! I lack the IC resources to produce more factories in a timely manner – enough to make a difference – because committing IC to producing factories would mean many of my other critically important items would go unbuilt. So I’m glad for these efficiency increases every several months.

Dec38CapeVerde.jpg


As with Sao Tome, the Cape Verde islands will serve as a base from which to operate once the war starts. I’ve staged a cavalry division (2 brigades – all of my divisions are 2 brigades, unless otherwise stated), two garrison divisions and an HQ at Cape Verde. I’m more concerned with keeping these islands than Sao Tome (which is somewhat redundant, considering I’ve got Angola and Cabinda nearby – Cape Verde has only the lone province of Bissau). I’ve also decided to base my tactical bombers here, because they will be of little use in Portugal, proper, unless someone tries to invade (at which point I could fly them back).

At the end of 1938, you'll see I'm focused more on resource buildup than on production, and much of my IC is devoted to buoying my cash reserves instead. But the FW 200 is my priority for now -- I'm sure it will prove versatile and useful.

Dec38Prod.jpg


I'm not sure if I mentioned that I'd gotten one level of the Macao fort finished. I'm sure it's done by now, and the Macao fort you see there is a second level which is of lower priority than the FW 200.

At this point, I'm really trying to hold to my priority levels for stockpiles, and boost them a little, and so I'm even willing to accept trade deals with my enemies -- I'm a little surprised the British asked, and I'm a little surprised (at myself!) I approved the trade with the evil USSR! It was an offer too good to refuse! Besides, there was a brief warming of the possible relationship about that time...

Jan39AlbaniaPact.jpg


Albania and the Molotov Pact increased tensions sky-high. Italy was now "in the act" too, from the Allied perspective, which I'm sure made them cast a skeptical eye on us, too.

By February, the new lucrative trade deals for supplies allow me to keep the resource purchases going while at the same time shifting the CG spending half to supplies and half to production -- a net overall gain for my economic situation!

FebMar39Prod.jpg


This makes building the FW 200 in reasonable time more possible (71% now).

The Coal Processing may seem silly, but Energy is a key resource, I need alot of it (4x rares), and if I run out, it kills 2 economic categories, not just one.

Mar39Rsch.jpg


Finally, the research priorities in this final stretch before war seems likely are the usual -- Education and Industrial Production still (perhaps the two most important universal priorities for any country), along with Infantry Support Weapons, and Militia Support Weapons (adding defensiveness to their soft attack bonus I recently improved for both). This reflects my conviction that, no matter HOW aggressive I play, defensiveness will be key to my survival.

Also note that I'm studiously avoiding "ahead of time" penalties unless it's for something absolutely critical -- small countries just cannot afford to waste an iota of that leadership allocation.
 

Myth

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A slow build up, but those are sometimes the best--they're harder to detect. Let's hope the Allies don't notice yours too well! ;)
 

Palmyrene

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Is it worth ditching the .10 in Diplomacy at this point in time, either for a short boost in officer training or research time?
 

Enewald

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I'm really crying for your hilariously low leadership. :(
The game is too unfair for small nations.
Why not even allow tech trading?
 

Stuyvesant

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Time's running out. I hope your preparations will be adequate for whatever you're planning (you've been managing to keep very quiet about your actual expectations).

When you talk about the Macao garrison, do you mean four infantry divisions or two infantry divisions of four brigades total? Not quite sure what you mean there...
 

Vann the Red

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Looks like you're on the verge of preparation. I'm eager for the show.

Vann
 

unmerged(87183)

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Yeah, I'm surprised you still only have around 4 leadership....

Other than that, things look to be going at a good pace. It was a smart idea to base those TAC's out at sea, your Airmen can get some practice before flying those Condors!
 

kigrwik

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Hi, I've been lurking for some time, but I can't help wondering how you're going to stay "under the radar". It seems that you are vulnerable to a very small amphibious landing by the UK (who basically own the Atlantic)...

Based on the bugs already reported, they'll have the transports to do it (if not the infantry divisions). ;)
 

TheHippopotamus

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excellent work, so excellent in fact it has prompted me to emerge from lurking in a rare show of support for a great aar. It also has finally convinced me to buy HOI3, as if playing the hell out of 2 wasn't enough to make me need more. Regrettably, I'm studying in Egypt without a decent PC until late December:(

So, in the meantime keep me entertained, and good luck with the impending war!
 

Rensslaer

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excellent work, so excellent in fact it has prompted me to emerge from lurking in a rare show of support for a great aar. It also has finally convinced me to buy HOI3, as if playing the hell out of 2 wasn't enough to make me need more. Regrettably, I'm studying in Egypt without a decent PC until late December:(

So, in the meantime keep me entertained, and good luck with the impending war!
Thank you, TheHippopotamus! And Welcome! Where and what are you studying in Egypt? Once upon a time I seriously considered trying to go to the American University there in Cairo.

Rensslaer
 

TheHippopotamus

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Thank you, TheHippopotamus! And Welcome! Where and what are you studying in Egypt? Once upon a time I seriously considered trying to go to the American University there in Cairo.

Rensslaer

Yeah, I'm currently studying at the AUC. My major is history(focusing on the Ottoman Empire) but, I'm a senior and just about ready to graduate from Ohio State, so I'm mostly taking Arabic here to pad my resume a little(and some Egyptology for fun). Although, the main reason I'm here is to see and experience Egypt and the Middle East, and to go to Europe a couple of times while I'm at it as not surprisingly, its a hell of a lot cheaper to fly there out of Cairo than Ohio!
 

myrmedon

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Been following this AAR from the start - it's a really enjoyable read! I've learnt alot following it and never realized how much fun a small nation could be!

Cheers,
myrm
 

quetzilla

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Love this AAR, and I also really love playing the small nations. Just played as Turkey, and before that as Ethiopia(!!!) and love both. Ethiopia is a bit crazy, as you have to make key (and crazy) decisions within the first 3 days in order to have any chance at all. Turkey is also tough because they start at 55% national unity which takes forever to increase.

I think one of the key things about playing a small power is to take advantage of the distraction in europe to eat up the major powers' colonial possessions which are poorly defended and the majors don't have anything to spare defending them.

Next up though I think I'm going to try playing USA as an unaligned imperial/espionage power of some sort... see how that turns out :).
 

Rensslaer

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Sorry it's been so long since I've done feedback! I'll try to keep up better than this!

Been lurking here a while. Absolutely fascinating aar... . I'm not sure which is harder, sorting out an OOB for the USSR or the intense balancing of multiple requirements facing a minor (got to love the range of problems this game throws at you!). How have you put the graph together, from save data or did you record it?

Plus the FW200 is a beautiful aircraft, and I loved your intro!

Looking forward to the next update.
Already responded to you briefly on the FW200, but Welcome! Yeah, sorting out the USSR OOB is fun and complicated (and kind of fun because it's so complicated) but there's just nothing like trying to run a country by the skin of your teeth, knowing that any errors may cause everything to crash down! :D

*de-lurks*

Sir I have greatly enjoyed your AAR. I do have one question though. Have you seen any limitations on your ability to field an overseas army due to the fact that Portugal only has one port from which to supply its divisions? And if not do you expect to see such a limitation in the future given your expansionist ideas?

Felk

*re-lurks*
Welcome, Felkethar! Yeah, someone else (Potski?) mentioned this already, that it won't matter from your capital port heading outbound. All my supply, obviously, is going through that one port.

Personally I kept coming back to the image from one of my old biology textbooks concerning the early land-walking fish (i.e. the Icthyostega as an example) and thinking that Portugal was neither fish nor amphibian but it was leaving the pond behind and heading for dry land! A very dangerous place to be, and I wonder what your new predators will look like? Will Germany help its Axis Ally? What about Italy and Japan in the Far East? While I agree that going the "trade route" would be far easier I don't think that it's in the spirit of the AAR; nor do I then that is the path you've chosen. Here's hoping that some large pre-historic proto-hawk doesn't swoop down and swallow you whole!
lol Funny analogies! I'll hope to be a successful amphibian.

Of all national symbols, 'lungfish' would have to be among the least glamorous :)
Hey there, Earl! Welcome! Yes, I'll hope to be a sleeker and craftier model!

Nice little story there.:) Wolfram seems like a good teacher.
Thanks! Yes, gotta get through those civilian brains.

Wolfram, sounds like a tough hard teacher with a good mass. :p
Yup! Tough, hard & good!

You're actually building it! You're ACTUALLY building that FW-200 squadron! :D Even though it strikes me as extravagant, your reasoning is sound (not to mention that your storytelling requires it).

It continues to be fascinating to watch you juggle all those priorities and dole out your tiny amounts of IC and resources. It feels like you're putting together a credible force, small as it might be. I can't wait to see how you'll fare during actual hostilities.

Nice scene with Wolfram. :)
I ACTUALLY built it! :D Yup, honestly I would never have thought of using one (maybe, maybe not -- not sure) if I hadn't accidentally stumbled into an opportunity to get one licensed while playing the beta. It just seemed like the perfect aircraft for Portugal to use, from its far-flung colonial and island bases. Juggling is what it is, all right! Thanks for your confidence! And I very much appreciate your appreciation for the fiction scene! I know you to be an able critic!

Subscribed!! I really enjoy such great AARs while waiting for 1.3 to come out before buying the game ;);)
Welcome, Sony Black! I don't think you should listen to the naysayers -- HOI 3 is plenty fun in v1.2. The next patch will just make it better!

Excellent story! I'm hoping your AAR might be peppered by a few more of these. :D You're quite the story teller and I appreciate such intervals.
Thanks! I very much appreciate it. There will definitely be more. Just a matter of finding time to write them, and keep them going in schedule with the gameplay.

The German will be a hard taskmaster, you can tell already. :D
In truth/reality, and metaphorically, alike!

Sophomore in HS it was while blocking on a punt return. Good news though its only a bruised monisscuss:eek:o trainer just had worst case scenario back yesterday. So ya, enough about me nice update take your time thats what that subscribed list thing's for.
Well, recover quickly I hope! We're listening to my son's game on the radio (computer) as I type this. They're getting creamed, but they're in a league higher than they should be. He made a tackle, though! He makes a couple every game, even though he doesn't play much. Not bad for a freshman.

Fantastic, Renss. Back in your element. If any of the readers haven't taken on FWtNL, may I supply a second nomination. Spectacular work.

Vann
Thanks, Vann! Glad you enjoyed it! It's really fun to be writing fiction again. Not long ago I wrote a scene with Einstein, as a part of a proposed sequel to Fire Warms (for publication, not for here), but I've had so many other projects going I just haven't had time for more fiction.

Subscribed immediately on seeing you refer to this in one of your recent posts in another forum, so I'm a little late to the party. As expected, extremely well written. I love the resource juggling act.:)
Thanks, Potski! And Welcome! Glad to have you following along!

Very nice narrative interlude! I imagine the Portuguese air force will be most useful coordinating with the U-boat fleet in the mid-Atlantic but you never know what sort of action might spring up. Dogfights over Gibralter, perhaps?
Thanks, VI! Oh, I wish we could collaborate like that. That would be fun. We might overfly Gibraltar... at some point. :rolleyes: :D

So the Germans have not just sold you airplanes, but sent you instructors as well. I think that will benefit your air force, the Germans might demand a lot, but I think in the end your men will benefit from it. As for this Wolfram, it wouldn’t be a certain cousin of the great flying ace from WWI, the very same Wolfram that in real history destroyed Stalingrad when he was in command of Luftflotte 4?
Actually, Wolfram was named after my brother-in-law. What did Wolfram von Richthofen look like? I just looked up some pictures, and he looks quite different from how I was picturing this instructor. But the possible connection had not even occurred to me! It should have.

Glad to see you'll push for an air force, even if it's modest...
Man, it's though, though, setting aside IC for these things!

:O Like what? USA joins? RUSSIA, even?
Bizarre like.... Well, not THAT bizarre! But unexpected, to be sure.

Inspired by your efforts as Portugal, I finally started up a game as a small power, something I've been meaning to do. Playing as Greece, which has about the same IC as Portugal. I've already applied many of the lessons you've learned in your game, especially in regards to managing resources (both industrial and leadership).
Oh, excellent! Greece should be fun. Interesting location, enough on the periphery of what's going on to be not immediately steamrolled, but near enough to have a certainty of action with Italy, etc. Will you do an AAR, in addition to your USSR one? Not that I'm necessarily recommending multiple simultaneous AAR projects. I know from experience that can be difficult and time consuming. :rolleyes:

Really enjoyed your update, and I loved the writing. I like these narrative sections, they help to set the scene for me and it is always good to put the people into these events - to remember that grand strategy affects even the humblest private and even the humblest private can affect the outcome of the grandest strategy.

I so want to see those beautiful planes fulfill their potential, so really looking forward to the next update!
Thanks! A narrative scene does so much to humanize what's going on, and to connect the reader with the reality of the situation. It's also very useful for showing the nuances of perspective that might be lost looking at a map, and might be not as effectively told directly through the author's narration.

A slow build up, but those are sometimes the best--they're harder to detect. Let's hope the Allies don't notice yours too well! ;)
Well, the answer to this possibility will be in the next update. I'll say up front that they'll notice... But in what way?

Is it worth ditching the .10 in Diplomacy at this point in time, either for a short boost in officer training or research time?
One would think so, but it's my judgment that the little bit of extra toward research doesn't make up for not having the diplo points adding up slowly. Eventually, I'm always going to need diplo -- whether for treaties or for trades. If I don't allocate a small amount as a commitment, there will never be a time when it seems "worth" allocating it, until after I need it.

I'm really crying for your hilariously low leadership.
The game is too unfair for small nations.
Why not even allow tech trading?
Ahh, you have too little faith in HOI 3. Some countries just do not have the ability to play on the world stage without having to overcome major internal obstacles. I think this is realistically done.

Time's running out. I hope your preparations will be adequate for whatever you're planning (you've been managing to keep very quiet about your actual expectations).

When you talk about the Macao garrison, do you mean four infantry divisions or two infantry divisions of four brigades total? Not quite sure what you mean there...
I hope so too! :p Yes, I do stay pretty quiet in order to build suspense... Except for an occasional tease... which ALSO builds suspense! :D

Macao has 4 brigades of infantry, 2 per division.

Looks like you're on the verge of preparation. I'm eager for the show.

Vann
Great! It's about to start.

Wow great AAR and awesome management of a small nation, quite inspiring!
Thank you! Great to hear! Welcome, Sulla!

Yeah, I'm surprised you still only have around 4 leadership....

Other than that, things look to be going at a good pace. It was a smart idea to base those TAC's out at sea, your Airmen can get some practice before flying those Condors!
Well, the leadership doesn't grow by whole numbers because the 2.5% increases given by the tech only provide whole number increases for countries with larger leadership pools to begin with. My leadership may never grow past 5.00. That's just the way it is, with small countries.

Hi, I've been lurking for some time, but I can't help wondering how you're going to stay "under the radar". It seems that you are vulnerable to a very small amphibious landing by the UK (who basically own the Atlantic)...

Based on the bugs already reported, they'll have the transports to do it (if not the infantry divisions). ;)
Welcome, Kigrwik! I think you may see what can happen when they try to invade, which I feel very strongly they will. I'll let you just chew on that for suspense' sake.

If the allies land in Portugal, do you have any hopes on the German or Italian AI helping you out at all?
No, my Axis allies don't have a land connection, and because of that I think it's almost impossible to consider the AI capable of figuring out how to do it. It's just very complicated, and difficult to manipulate the AI to that degree.

Yeah, I'm currently studying at the AUC. My major is history(focusing on the Ottoman Empire) but, I'm a senior and just about ready to graduate from Ohio State, so I'm mostly taking Arabic here to pad my resume a little(and some Egyptology for fun). Although, the main reason I'm here is to see and experience Egypt and the Middle East, and to go to Europe a couple of times while I'm at it as not surprisingly, its a hell of a lot cheaper to fly there out of Cairo than Ohio!
Very cool. I adore Ottoman History! Some of my favorite classes (about 4 of them) were on the Ottomans or their forebears the Abbasids and Seljuks, etc.

Been following this AAR from the start - it's a really enjoyable read! I've learnt alot following it and never realized how much fun a small nation could be!

Cheers,
myrm
Very good! Welcome, myrmedon! Glad to have been able to provide encouragement! Thanks for taking the time to say hello!

All right... I'm about 1/3 of the way to having the next update prepared. Look for it sometime tomorrow, probably.

Remember.... This is the "bizarre" circumstance, which is nevertheless quite realistic and understandable. Fun stuff ahead!

Thanks, everybody!

Rensslaer
 

Rensslaer

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Love this AAR, and I also really love playing the small nations. Just played as Turkey, and before that as Ethiopia(!!!) and love both. Ethiopia is a bit crazy, as you have to make key (and crazy) decisions within the first 3 days in order to have any chance at all. Turkey is also tough because they start at 55% national unity which takes forever to increase.

I think one of the key things about playing a small power is to take advantage of the distraction in europe to eat up the major powers' colonial possessions which are poorly defended and the majors don't have anything to spare defending them.

Next up though I think I'm going to try playing USA as an unaligned imperial/espionage power of some sort... see how that turns out :).
Welcome, Quetzilla! Wow, you have some of the same ideas about games that would be fun to play as I do. I've always wanted to try Turkey, and playing the US as a non-aligned power would be fun, too. You've also made a key observation about how a small country can be so successful! Thanks for stopping in to say hello!

Rensslaer
 

quetzilla

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Welcome, Quetzilla! Wow, you have some of the same ideas about games that would be fun to play as I do. I've always wanted to try Turkey, and playing the US as a non-aligned power would be fun, too. You've also made a key observation about how a small country can be so successful! Thanks for stopping in to say hello!

Rensslaer


So I went crazy with espionage... ~200 foreign spies. I've slowly been converting all the major governments to social democrats. Germany, Italy, Russia, Nat China, even Argentina, Brazil. It's about midway through 1939 so I'm looking forward to seeing those 1940 election results (for the ones that have elections). Would be more fun to make everyone commies but USSR doesn't have much leadership for spies :(. I also went crazy with radar (~4 years ahead of time) and now I can see half the world! I just don't know who to fight yet :p.