HOI3 AAR: Viva el Socialismo! – #4
It occurs to me that now would be a good time to contemplate the civil war campaign and to draw out some lessons learned. After much scratching of my chin I’ve come to the following conclusions:
- Making big stack divisions is great and all but one then lacks the flexibility of having small divisions (say, 2 brigades) mopping up enemy territory and closing pockets behind the main force. Small divisions would also be able to destroy trapped and out of supply units without taking away the combat strength from the front lines. When the army reorganizes some corps will be ‘light’ and ready to perform mopping-up duties.
- My troops aren’t terribly mobile. It’s time to get armored ad motorized units researched and built ASAP.
- Air power is extremely powerful. The tactical bombers could turn an even fight into an easy victory within a couple of days. We definitely need more of them too!
What do you think? Thoughts welcome! Meanwhile, on with the adventure.
The Year to November 1938
The rest of the year is spent re-organising the military. We’re able to disband an army group HQ (saving us officers) and organise the troops into two Armies. The first is composed of three “heavy” infantry corps and two “scout” corps. The heavy infantry corps are composed of four divisions, each of three infantry brigades and an artillery brigade. The “scout” corps are two or three divisions of cavalry or infantry and are designed to fill the role theorized above.
Industry has remained on a full war footing, but by November cash and resource reserves have dipped low and so it’s time, unfortunately, to slip back to a peace-time economy. Not being able to continue to pad out our military will hurt, but we also can’t afford to go bankrupt, so peacetime economy it is!
All that we need to consider now is a to-do list for the rest of the year::
- Wrap up the industrial tech research and start on the military techs (I’m worried I’ve spent too long on the industrial techs).
- Switch policies back to peace-footing ones.
- Build garrison units for the Canaries and Africa.
- Work out what to do about the fact that the Allies are influencing me away from the Comintern! Arrrg! Can I do anything? I hope so…
A number of industrial technologies wrap up in December and I switch over to working on Cavalry techs. Why cavalry, you ask? Simple, it’s how you get to motorized and then mechanized infantry and I think I’m going to need a few of those in the long-term! Once those are wrapped up it’s time for some armor tech. I wat to at least be able to field capable medium tanks.
Meanwhile, I’ve spent weeks adjusting the trade and production interfaces to try to get all the numbers into the green. I’m probably about there, but I’m having trouble finding trade partners with a surplus in money who also want one of the goods I have in surplus. I will have to keep trying.
In good news, by the start of 1939 the Allies have lost interest in influencing me. This sees me drifting back towards the Comintern! Hurrah! In time we will join the Global Socialist Revolution, Brothers!
Slightly more pressing than the global socialist revolution is the need to appropriately garrison our African holdings. I pop two divisions composed of two brigades of Garrison Infantry to the top of the production queue. Sure, they won’t be tough, but they are probably going to be suitable to keep our bits of Africa ours.
January – March 1939
Production and research stride ahead and in March Germany annexes Czechoslovakia, shortly followed by Italy annexing Albania. This will not end well, I am sure! England responds by guaranteeing Poland’s independence and France starts mobilizing. Hmm. Perhaps war will be coming soon?
It’s time to adjust our intelligence priorities. A few more spies, directed towards Italy sounds like a plan. Also of concern is Portugal, which is leaning heavily towards the fascists.
As expected, on March 30, Italy joins the Axis powers. This will definitely not end well!
April – June 1939
The Danes and Luxembourg join the rush to mobilize. How long until total war in Europe? Not long, I expect. A pleasant distraction is the completion of our Garrison divisions, which are quickly shipped to West and North Africa.
Annoyingly, the French have decided to try to influence me towards the Allies, I’m drifting towards them with a value of 20, which is rather high. Never mind, I hope that I won’t have any distracting Frenchies around soon…
Well, never mind. I’ve added another Garrison division to the order list for the Canary Islands and a number of Armored Car brigades. I plan to use them in my armor divisions in future as I believe their scouting value will aid my armored divisions’ combat effectiveness. Well, that’s the plan.
Throughout June the Cavalry technologies are developed and we continue working on them a little more. I expect we’ll be able to deploy motorized units by the end of the year! Excellent!
July – September 1939
In July I ship the final Garrison Division to the Canary Islands. West Africa forces now comprise two garrison divisions and an HQ (each division composed of two brigades). North Africa has two divisions, one garrison, one infantry, both of two brigades with a local HQ. Sure, it’s not much, but I’m not expecting much to happen in these territories anytime soon.
With the freed up production slots I order two more Interceptor air wings. I’ll need them if I want to keep my Tactical Bombers alive in the long run, and afer the civil war I’m 100% convinced of the usefulness of airpower – even interceptors – in turning the tie in land battles.
On August 22 Germany signs the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact with the Soviet Union and immediately goes to war with Poland. Spain feels very glad not to be Poland right now. I’m guessing This is It and the (new) War to End all Wars will begin now.
By the end of August the US is mobilizing for war, New Zealand, Australia have joined the Allies and Germany is pushing into Poland.
To try to slow my inexorable drift towards the allies I start using our intelligence operatives to make the UK look more threatening. Perhaps our people will be less easily swayed towards the Capitalist system when they hear about English slums!
By late September the three Armored Car brigades are completed and added to the Infantry-based Scout corps. I order a third new Interceptor wing and two more Tactical Bomber wings. In bad news, the Germans have put us under an embargo, for reasons unknown, and Poland is defeated. No response from the rest of the Allies yet. Europe holds its breath.
October – December 1939
In early October Germany declares war on Denmark. War has begun in the west. By November the Danes are defeated. Our technology focus continues towards war preparation with Cavalry techs finishing and armored and motorized techs starting. I am very concerned about a potential showdown with the Axis powers should they see me as easy meat or a friend of the Allies, so I need to make sure I don’t look too easy to take out. I’m considering building some Anti-Tank brigades to add to existing Infantry divisions, but I’ll hold off for now.
In December the first of our three new factory complexes is completed and built in Madrid. The three factories together will boost our current industrial production about 10%, which doesn’t sound like much (and yes, they have taken resources to build I could have perhaps better put into the airforce), but I hope the investment will pay off in due course.
One thing is for sure, 1940 is going to be a very interesting year.
Read on for the next part! HOI3 AAR: Viva el Socialismo! – #5