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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

Bosparan

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aka: How I got into a real world war ^^

Playing as Spain, trying to test out this new Civil War thing.
Decided to play as Anarchist (Coring everything seemed rather fun).
Early on, I focused on espionage ("Shiny new toys!!!" ... besides, I hadn't looked up which territories I'd get to keep so building industry seemed risky).
Then the civil war kicked in, which was a really, really new experience (awesome job with that!).

War concluded, then spread the flame of anarchy to our fellow Iberian people, good times.

So much for the prologue ... context if you will.

In the meantime, elsewhere ...
  • Germany did all those things Germans tend to do in those years: Rhineland, Anschluss, Sudetenland, Memel, then demand Danzig and don't react well to being told "No". Italy joins the game.
  • Poland had signed its suicide pact (aka: Create own faction over joining Allies), but does surprisingly well in the early stages, taking Königsberg and all that
  • Britain decolonizes and is playing nice neighbour
  • USA is being historically passive and watches
  • France switches over to Communism
  • Japan invades China, China (Communist and regular) join Komintern. The front stalls, the warloards stay separate.
  • Mexico goes communist and has its civil war with the fascist Junta
That leaves our faction constellation:
  • Axis vs. Polish Faction (please don't ask me to spell it)
  • Asian Coprosperity Sphere vs. Komintern
  • Allies enjoying peace
So much for the rest of the world.

Now, we are the anarchist, staying calmly on the sidelines would be boring, right? So after some gearing up for war with a mix of Light Tanks for maneuvering and Infantry for holding the line, I spread the flame of anarchy to my dear neighbors. France joins Komintern, in the first few days I'm at war with the Soviet Union, Mongolia (whatever), and both Chinas. I'll admit I saw that coming.

Not burdened by the Maginot Line - and the French troops mostly on their fascist neighbors borders - I literally managed to overrun France in a few days, prompting their surrender (my light tanks were at the doors of Paris before the French troops made it). With the fall of mainland France, I went about cleaning up their provincial holdings, expanding my light naval units to protect supply lines and ... well, gear up for the war in Asia. Definitely didn't want to take on the Axis yet and they looked to be a while.

What happened next was a rapid escalation of lesser countries in the Americas picking sides, lots of logistics, more production, handling the Iberian coring to help with manpower ... the usual things.
Until I was ready to do the China what I did to France (worked just as well too, even if the drive was a bit longer, given the bad streets and ... well, a lot more country to cross).

Meanwhile in Berlin ...

Germany declares war on Yugoslavia. Yugoslavia joins Komintern, gets dragged into its war with me and starts steamrolling through northern Italy and Austria.
Fortunately, I was just about to reorganize my Infantry Corps in Northern Africa (after cleaning up French holdouts). A quick naval invasion later, Yugoslavia collapses in a few days with me cutting off their front from supply, then rolling them up quickly.
That got me looking into the war screen and the war ledger showed Spain, the Axis and the Co-Prosperity Sphere on one side of things. The people hate being grouped with the fascist bastards, but that trip to France and Yugoslavia had really done wonders for my War Participation. What got me fascinated though:

Mexican Junta had more War participation than Germany!
In fact, they were second after me.
How the heck do they get that ranking (which they still retain!) when all they do is lose a few thousand people and squat on their territory (that civil war wasn't going anywhere)?

Anyway, that curiosity aside, the war in China pretty much settled itself with the Chinese losing their industrial areas to my Blitzkrieg tactics and, when turning their back to the Japanese to deal with me, get hit from the north by the Japanese forces. The overall process to surrender took a while longer to play out - that's one heck of a lot of mobilized manpower, even if the quality sucks - but was mostly nasty details.

At which point Germany declares war on Luxembourg. Luxembourg joins Allies, two Chinese warlords join the allies. One of the warlords is at war with me without a declaration of war! Just turned hostile from one day to another. Drags in UK (They previously rather liked me, as I had made sure). UK drags in the swarm.

The United States of America join the Allies.
Great Britain calls The United States of America into their war with the Anarchist Collective.

That investment into Naval Bomber tech is really paying itself right about now ...

############

Really though:
  • What's with the War Score calculation? Some of the minors got pretty good percentages for doing nothing. 13% War participation for fighting the Mexican Civil war when the rest of the war listed in the ledger included taking down France, Poland, Romania, Chine, Communist China, <Some Chinese Warlord the name of which I forget>, <Some other Chinese Warlord the name of which I forget>, three years of a bloody, stalled Asian front and all the French colonies.
  • Why do I get included into the "same" war ledger as the fascist factions, when we have like zero political associations?!
  • What's with that sudden state of war with the Allies?
Hell, I love a good challenge, but this is going to be one "fun" game to salvage ^^
At least given that the war system appears to be focused on avoiding multilateral war-fronts, it's unlikely the fascist factions will turn on me until after the peace conference.
Which means there's no one else left to declare war upon me, makes diplomacy somewhat easier I suppose ...
 

Bosparan

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A short post-script on the fate of Mexico:

After an interesting war with Komintern the forces of liberty, individualism and selfrule (and their fascist neighbors, disliked though they be) proved to be victorious.
Suffice to say, that using light vehicles with high speed and low supply requirements to split the Mongolian hinterlands had unfortunate consequences to the east front's supply situation, while preventing reinforcing the newly opened west front.

Meanwhile, the Mexican Junta lost their civil war, communist Mexico ascendant.
As the last undefeated minor in the defeated faction, I was curious how that would play out at the peace conference.
I needn't have worried:

The discussion was never even on the table:
Without any option to acquire anything, the Mexican Junta fully owned all of Mexico, no trace of the communists remain (and all citizens are faithful fascists, of course).

Can anybody explain to me how that came to be?
I mean, lets face it:
  • There is no way we can magically spirit away the communists of Mexico
  • Given the current state of war with the Allies, the winning factions (and myself) have absolutely no way to enforce the switch. We couldn't possibly reach them and the US Navy would be rather impolite if we tried. Never mind what the British navy would have to say on the topic.
In reality, we would have little choice but to accept the accomplished facts.
In this particular game? Well, I guess the civil war mechanics did unfortunate things to me here ...
 

Bosparan

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It was a hard struggle, but finally the Allies have been crushed, after a lengthy naval arms race, blitzing Great Britain while the Italians were stalling their navy, then the grand naval invasion of the Americas from three directions that clinched the war.

So ... Mexico still gets a postscript after all.

Early into the phase of building a navy to enable the US invasion the Americans crushed fascist Mexico (let's be honest here: Not much of a competition).
With the grand war over, at the peace conference we get to split the spoils.
Including Mexico, which now counts as Communist Mexico.

wtf?!

Anyway, the Global Defense Council takes most of the US, Italy puppets the remaining (isolated inland) state. Somebody gifts some PC points to the puppet so they can claim two province in Mexico.

I still don't really see the point behind either, but am honestly glad that at least the mystery of Mexico is over ... for this game.
Let's see what happens next time to Spain when I'll give the French focus trees a spin ^^
 

FrancescoT

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Moved to AAR Sub-forum.
 

SibCDC

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Interesting playthrough, I have yet to give the new DLC a try but I'm eager to see what Spain has in store.
 

Bosparan

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Admittedly, this was really meant as a rant on Mexico Weirdness and the war system, rather than an AAR but ... well, why not ^^

It's rather fun playing as the new Spain, imo.
I found the debuff to attacking during the civil war to be rather annoying but it makes sense, as it gives the time to see the various flavors to play out.

My key take-aways from playing Anarchists:
Espionage is an incredibly powerful investment, even if it takes some time to fully play out.
There was a part I didn't really mention that pretty much proved to be a game-breaker, transforming the endgame:
- Use your spies to bring in collaborators in India
- Take India
- Core India
- Drown in manpower
So while other major players were bleeding manpower, I enjoyed a 16.5% Manpower modifier (Human Wave ftw) over most of the Indian population (with none of the limiting modifiers India itself has to contend with).