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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

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LWE

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This is going to be a relatively short and laconic AAR about my playthrough as Guangdong, with slightly modified NNM mod (it now lasts until 1st September 1939, and the AI is a little bit less aggressive). I haven't played Victoria for a while, so my skills in this game were quite rusty.

The first thing the new governor of Guangdong did was to encourage education in the province ("teachers" is just renamed clergy).

v2_8.jpg


Foreign dogs continue to spread opium all across the Great Qing, including Guandong.

v2_22.jpg


The Qing managed to keep its territorial integrity in the resulting war, but opium trade continued almost unchecked.

v2_36.jpg


The cholera and a peasant rebellion made the 1850'ies a harsh decade in Guandong.

v2_83.jpg


Anti-Qing sentiment was growing in Guandong as more reforms were made, both among the commoners and the elite.

v2_98.jpg


Despite massive peasant rebellions, prompted by poverty and by unpopular, although necessary, reforms, the governor of Guandong refused to close the province's borders.

v2_133.jpg


So the reforms continued, until finances were put in a proper order, the railroads made transportation easier, and the old weaponry replaced by new rifles, untill, finally, the province was considered truly civilized by the West.

v2_161.jpg


The now de-facto independent government of Guandong oversaw the beginnings of light industry, while taking care to ensure that order and traditions are well-maintained.

v2_164.jpg


The end of the sixties saw first post-westernization mass movements in Guandong, forcing the governor to allow mass meeting and institute pensions.

v2_174.jpg


Of course, the Qing could not tolerate such disobedience, sending armies to Guandong, intenting to bring it to heel. But the new Guandong army doctrines and rapid mass mobilization meant that the Qing and their loyal governors suffered severe casualties even from unexperienced Guandong recruits.

v2_199.jpg


Qing armies were pushed away from the capital.

v2_205.jpg


Guandong fleet managed to block hordes of Qing troops in Hainan.

v2_209.jpg


Armed with muzzle-loaded rifles and a new concept of social justice, the Guangdong soldiers were true Social Justice Warriors.

v2_210.jpg


Although the troops often had to retreat under assault, in the end, unorganized Qing loyalist armies were always repealed.

v2_222.jpg


By the end, Qing exhaustion was so high, they were willing to end the war giving some land to Guangdong.

v2_238.jpg
 
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stnylan

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And so Guangdong precipitates the collapse of China, or is it the rise of a new China from the ashes of the old?
 

LWE

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It ended up being both.

-------------------------

The victory resulted in rising Cantonese nationalism.

v2_243.jpg


Guandong heavy industry started with the machinery of death.

v2_248.jpg


Further concessions were made to liberal movements, including the institution of the Parliament.

v2_261.jpg


It didn't take long to integrate the new lands.

v2_302.jpg


The governor of Fujian also attempted rebelling from the Qing, but the new modernized Wing army quickly overran the province. Taiwan notables used the rebellion as a pretext to declare independence.

v2_310.jpg


Taiwan independence didn't last long, after the island was taken over by Guandong.

v2_336.jpg


Controversially, the new Guandong state allied with Japan, united by a common enemy.

v2_346.jpg


Even after a slapdash modernization, Qing troops are still no match for Cantonese soldiers.

v2_352.jpg


Some elements in Guandong protested against the war. The protesters were quickly suppressed as unpatriotic subversives who want Guandong to be ruled by the Manchus again.

v2_369.jpg


The Battle of Nanning was a most bloody one, but at the end of the day, the battlefield was controlled by the Cantonese.

v2_384.jpg


The Qing retreat from another province.

v2_387.jpg


Soon, the Qing were humiliated even further.

v2_404.jpg


Communists were proclaimed to be a danger to the Chinese people.

v2_413.jpg


Social protests of Guandong workers were harshly repressed as harmful to the struggle to liberate China from the Manchus.

v2_415.jpg


The successes in Qing wars allowed Guandong to divert some men to the Vietnamese operation. The Vietnamese remnant was annexed a decate later. Meanwhile, paternalistic Guandong bureaucrats took the workers' side in a union dispute.

v2_39_2.jpg


Soon, the Qing had to give up more land to the rising South Chinese tiger.

v2_65_2.jpg
 
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Guangdong might soon find itself saddled with the whole ungainly mess that is China.
 

LWE

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China is certainly the main theme of this AAR, yes.

-------

The Socialists first entered the government of Guandong in 1892, promising to respect the constitutional order.

v2_71_2.jpg


Education and enlightment spread across Guandong, as its people looked at comets not with the reverent fear of old times, but with the inquisitive minds of educated people.

v2_96_2.jpg


Cantonese troops could now enjoy bananas as they were shooting the poor drafted Qing peasants.

v2_141_2.jpg


More land freed from the Manchus as the North Pole is conquered.

v2_146_2.jpg


This was a rather underwhelming Great War.

v2_188_2.jpg


Rising Chinese nationalism in Guandong started to acquire fascist traits, even as the government tried to diffuse the youthful enthusiasm of the Blackshirt Society.

v2_234_2.jpg


After the latest war, Qing controlled few lands south of Yangtze.

v2_242_2.gif


This string of defeats resulted in Qing collapsing.

v2_273_2.jpg


Some of the minor ex-Qing warlord cliques were quickly mopped up.

v2_305_2.jpg


The continued victories gave the Guandong government enough leverage to suppress the popular discontent with unequal elections.

v2_309_2.jpg
 

stnylan

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How did the not-so Great War stack up nation-wise?
 

LWE

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Germany and USA vs. France and A-H. Great Wars are probably a bit too prominent even with reduced AI aggressiveness, but on the other hand, their effects can be fun sometimes.

------------------------------------

The growing demand for Guandong to free China from the warlords resulted in yet another victorious war.

v2_312_2.jpg


The state combined repression with concessions to the social justice and labor movements.

v2_331_2.jpg


Guandong used the destructive German-Russian Great War raging in Europe to occupy Macao, with the Portuguese being able to do nothing about it. Now only Hong Kong remained as a Western imperialist outpost in China.

v2_338_2.jpg


The new European borders.

v2_339_2.jpg


You don't see Fascist Sweden every day.

v2_347_2.jpg


Another proud European nation falls to - or, depending on your point of view, rises up to - fascism, and another minor warlord clique falls to the Guandong Chinese Liberation Army.

v2_368_2.jpg


The regime in Beijing proclaimed itself to be "nationalist", but the people of Guandong weren't fooled. However, the Japanese wanted Northern China to themselves...

v2_378_2.jpg


The Beijing regime betrayed its own people by surrendering not to Guandong, but to the Japanese puppet clique in Manchuria. This was a massive outrage to all the Chinese people - how could they remain slaves of a foreign power even after the Qing were forced to abdicate?

v2_382_2.jpg


With the development of new infantry equipment, Guandong felt itself ready to strike at Japan and its puppet regime in Beijing.

(Also, there's a Primitive, Fascist Kurdistan, formed from the Iranian Kurds).

v2_466.jpg


Puppet armies melt like butter before Guandong Chinese Liberation forces, but the Japanese imperialists fought stubbornly.

v2_473.jpg


The war was one of the most lethal in Chinese history.

v2_480.jpg


Puppet Chinese armies, despite their bad combat performance, distracted Guandong troops from the Japanese treat.

v2_482.jpg


It seemed like the Japanese would be finally pushed out...

v2_483.jpg


But then, the dishonorable imperialists used poisonous gas on the battlefield, chocking to death almost 50 000 brave Guandong soldiers. Despite the horror of this defeat, the people remained strong, refusing all offers of surrender.

v2_484.jpg


Another battle where Guangong Chinese boys were forced to retreat from the noxious fumes of the Japanese.

v2_493.jpg


Still, the lands south of Yangtze contained many people ready to fight and die for the case of Japan no longer intervening in continental Asia.

v2_495.jpg


One of the largest Japanese armies was surrounded and beaten in February 1926.

v2_499.jpg


A month later, its remnants were scattered.

v2_500.jpg


The Japanese are retreating from numerical Guandong advantage.

v2_502.jpg


Finally, the Guandong Chinese Liberation Army found out the secrets of Japanese gas attacks.

v2_509.jpg


This allowed a brave military operation in Korea.

v2_510.jpg


Remaining Japanese forces in Korea were no match for patriotic Southern Chinese.

v2_522.jpg


In honor of the victories over Japanese (and to prevent massive war-time rebellions) the voting system was reformed and pensions were increased.

v2_528.jpg


The Japanese beast was finally defeated. Northern Chiinese and Koreans were freed. Due to protests from Western powers, Guandong refrained from reuniting China, instead merely overthrowing the Japanese puppet government in Beijing, replacing it with a friendly one.

v2_543.jpg
 

stnylan

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A great victory. And while China may not yet be united, it is surely just a matter of time.
 

LWE

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Unfortunately, the whole China won't be reunited - at least, not before September 1939. The event that gives you a choice to declare war with the reunification casus belli didn't fire in the remaining ten years, so I did something different.

--------

A massive Communist uprising was ruthlessly put down.

v2_552.jpg


The Reactionaries were deal with the same way. Guandong could not be influenced by the rable-rousers of either extreme Left or extreme Right.

(Pop militancy was pretty high from all that war exhaustion)

v2_571.jpg


The pro-Guandong government in Northern China was overthrown in a coup, giving Guandong the pretext to stage an intervention, liberating more Chinese land.

v2_578.jpg


In the West, the fascist British Empire clashed with America and Germany, two forces on the side of democracy, allied, ironically, with Tsarist Russia.

v2_596.jpg


After some deliberation, Guandong decided to ally with Germany.

v2_599.jpg


Guandong participation in war amounted to occupying Hong Kong, British Malaya and some provinces in British India bordering Tibet. The war was really decided in Germany, as the British, after their initial success, overextended and let their ally Belgium fall, leading to the defeat of their troops in Westen Germany and German invasion of the Home Islands (note the far upper-left corner of the map).

v2_610.jpg


At the peace confernce, Guandong representatives were humble, insisting only that they want to limit British power.

v2_622.jpg


Nevertheless, Guangong was given not only Hong Kong, but also some secondary British colonies all over the planet, mostly to prevent conflicts by the victorious powers. Most of these colonies were released as autonomous protectorates. Guandong kept Tanganyika, part of Cyrenaica and Ceylon as direct possessions.

v2_636.jpg


New map of Africa. Russian possessions in Africa make the Russian flag HoD steamboat a reality.

v2_639.jpg


The people of Guangong by the end.

v2_669.jpg


And the world. Russia now controls Delhi, with local powers reclaiming most of India. Guandong liberated Korea and pushed Japan back to their islands, even through it couldn't liberate Beijing, which remained under the control of incompetent North Chinese regimes.

map.jpg
 
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stnylan

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Well that is a beautifully messy map of Africa.
 

LWE

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You can see much worse bordergore in any old EU3 thread...

Interesting read.
Thanks. A better player can probably easily achieve a WC with Guangdong, but I enjoyed my game regardless.