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Spain - 11/28/2020 12:30:02 AM   
Chernobyl

 

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I was doing some hotseat playtesting and experimented with declaring war on Spain as Entente.

It's extremely easy to get Spain to surrender. They only have a couple understrength corps, no HQ, little ability to reinforce due to low supply. There are some partisan hexes but just park a few detachments and you're done.

Holy cow you get a ton of MPP. I think it's about +200 mpp each turn without any industry tech. Basically a +40-60% economy boost for France.

There doesn't seem to be much downside to this besides Portugal gets annoyed. Perhaps declaring war on Spain ought to anger the USA?

Diplomacy to get Spain in the war seems to be a very strong option also. The central powers don't have as many diplo chits and also the ottomans have trouble sparing cash early.

IMO it doesn't seem like Spain should be such a gigantic economic prize and it doesn't really fit the history very well. What do you guys think?

< Message edited by Chernobyl -- 11/28/2020 12:31:34 AM >
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RE: Spain - 11/28/2020 1:19:43 AM   
Platoonist


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Chernobyl

I was doing some hotseat playtesting and experimented with declaring war on Spain as Entente.


I be curious to see how it would go against the AI or a human player. Would France have enough corps to fight a two-front war or would the British have to do all the heavy lifting?

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RE: Spain - 11/28/2020 1:45:05 AM   
OldCrowBalthazor


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I would surmise that an Entente attack on Spain could only be pulled off if the Germans botched a France first move or didn't bother with Belgium..but did a Russia first. (the latter strategy which is inherently flawed for a variety of reasons imho).

If I was the Central Powers, and my Entente opponent tried a gambit like that...I would be most pleased, as would my U-boat captains and any other raiders that I got out in the Atlantic or Mediterranean. The Entente player better take Spain down quick, with as minimal a force as possible.

Of course, I could be wrong about this assessment of this stratagem, and would welcome anyone to try it against me.

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RE: Spain - 11/28/2020 1:52:07 AM   
Ktonos

 

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Is it really that easy to surrender? We talk about 2 turns easy?
Because if it takes more than this, Germany (I assume Spain goes as a German minor) would easily max out the corps, maybe even upgrade them, and entrench them in key positions in the mountains. From there all the CP player has to do is stall and he himself enjoy the 200 mpp boost to his economy.

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RE: Spain - 11/28/2020 2:00:06 AM   
OldCrowBalthazor


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Ktonos

Is it really that easy to surrender? We talk about 2 turns easy?
Because if it takes more than this, Germany (I assume Spain goes as a German minor) would easily max out the corps, maybe even upgrade them, and entrench them in key positions in the mountains. From there all the CP player has to do is stall and he himself enjoy the 200 mpp boost to his economy.


Yep, that's for sure.
Also, I wonder what the diplomatic repercussions would be if the Entente did this. Its certainly 'thinking out of the box' and warrants a hot seat test or two.

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RE: Spain - 11/28/2020 3:54:50 AM   
ThisEndUp

 

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No diplomatic repercussions it seems. Spain gives roughly 170 MPPs per turn and 480 MPPs in plunder during my test.

As far as I can tell Spain is doomed to fall in 3 turns if attacked with sufficient force. I tried it with 5 corps; 4 inf 1 cav. I don't think this much is necessary. They only have 2 half strength corps and a handful of detachments. 1 of those corps and 2 of those detachments are within striking range on turn 1. If you move quickly, you should be at the gates of Madrid by the end of turn 2. Since Spain has no HQ, Madrid's defender will have atrocious supply, morale, and readiness, especially if placed on siege. Additionally, since the CP has only 2 turns to react, the best they could do is entrench a strength 8 corps in Madrid, with perhaps 2-3 detachments in the vicinity. Trivial to remove even with 3/4 entrenchment.

The main issue with this option is not the assault itself but the opportunity cost involved. Sufficient units and a HQ have to be railed in for the attack. If Germany is pushing hard in France, then it may be difficult to set these aside for an attack. Otherwise this may be something to seriously consider. Another strike against an eastern strategy for Germany.

I'm beginning to wonder if a similar gambit against Persia may be worth considering.

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RE: Spain - 11/28/2020 5:04:30 AM   
OldCrowBalthazor


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ThisEndUp

Interesting analysis...I was just fooling around with this too.

Spain Gambit:
The Entente doing an unprovoked attack on neutral Spain seems highly ahistorical..but then again, an aggressor can always come up with a reason to do such a thing. This would certainly secure the the convoy routes off its Atlantic coast and the Western Mediterranean...on top of an extra MMP stream that won't get taken away.
I would think an extreme diplomatic hit should be warranted though. Norway, Sweden, and more than likely the USA would probably be hesitant to cozy up to such mendacity.
This might have to be considered by the devs if this gets popular.

Persia Gambit:
Persia is interesting..and there were Russians and Ottomans fighting over Tabriz. Its definitely a path for the Russians with cavalry to get to Mosul by violating Persia's territory.

(in reply to ThisEndUp)
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RE: Spain - 11/28/2020 5:12:08 PM   
Ktonos

 

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I don't know. If this is the situation maybe mobilization events and spawns are needed at least for "major" minors like Spain and maybe Sweden in case they are dowed upon. A turn 2 spawn of an HQ along with a full corps and a turn 3 spawn of a couple more corps might do the trick.

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RE: Spain - 11/28/2020 6:44:56 PM   
FOARP

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Ktonos

Is it really that easy to surrender? We talk about 2 turns easy?
Because if it takes more than this, Germany (I assume Spain goes as a German minor) would easily max out the corps, maybe even upgrade them, and entrench them in key positions in the mountains. From there all the CP player has to do is stall and he himself enjoy the 200 mpp boost to his economy.


It's crazy that the Germans get this boost without any connection to Spain and Spain should probably be a major for this reason only.

Additionally, Spanish MPP should be 150, tops.

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RE: Spain - 11/29/2020 1:49:43 AM   
Chernobyl

 

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Yeah I do feel Spain has too many MPP. It has a high number of both cities and towns.
I also agree it could use a HQ for defense. And perhaps an alternate capital or two as well. Although really the entente have enough spare units by 1916 and Spain has too many areas to defend so it only delays the inevitable.
Also perhaps increase the diplo cost for Spain from 50 to 75 or 100.

Most historical of all would probably be just not allow Entente to declare war on Spain USA or Romania. Ideally with a game option "ahistorical war declarations on/off"

< Message edited by Chernobyl -- 11/29/2020 1:50:59 AM >

(in reply to FOARP)
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RE: Spain - 11/29/2020 4:53:19 AM   
OldCrowBalthazor


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Chernobyl

Yeah I do feel Spain has too many MPP. It has a high number of both cities and towns.
I also agree it could use a HQ for defense. And perhaps an alternate capital or two as well. Although really the entente have enough spare units by 1916 and Spain has too many areas to defend so it only delays the inevitable.
Also perhaps increase the diplo cost for Spain from 50 to 75 or 100.

Most historical of all would probably be just not allow Entente to declare war on Spain USA or Romania. Ideally with a game option "ahistorical war declarations on/off"


Well Chernobyl, you certainly opened Pandora's box illuminating this 'Spain Gambit' issue. Hope your happy about that

All kidding aside..this is a great topic that needs to be explored further. Ktonos's idea is interesting, as yours and all the others. ThisEndUp's hotseat test mirrors what I saw and did after reading this post. Your question about Spain is quite interesting, and I hope the Devs take a look at this.

(in reply to Chernobyl)
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RE: Spain - 11/29/2020 7:26:21 PM   
BillRunacre

 

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In addition to Portugal reacting, if the Entente declare war on Spain then the USA will swing 11-20% towards the Central Powers.

Of course, if the US's mobilization level is already low then this won't matter much to the Entente player, but otherwise it might be more bothersome.

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(in reply to OldCrowBalthazor)
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RE: Spain - 11/30/2020 10:22:13 AM   
hottegetthoff

 

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Spain has a dreadnought in their navy, its honestly pretty worth it to sink diplomatic chits as the CP into them, if they join at the right time, alot can change in the course of war. Gibraltar is easy to take, and the french need to extend their forces heavily. North africa is easy to take, and austrian subs will have additional bases. Also, french harbours in meditarenean are valuable because not many entente harbours here allow for 10 hp reinforcement. It seems a double edged sword to me.

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RE: Spain - 11/30/2020 3:45:38 PM   
Chernobyl

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: hottegetthoff
as the CP


Spain isn't really defend-able against the Entente unless you already have them on their heels. Any competent Entente player will see the diplo % ticking up and set up an invasion which cannot be stopped. The dreadnought will be lost when Spain surrenders or be sunk for a NM bonus if it ventures out.

I'm sure it works against the ai though.

(in reply to hottegetthoff)
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RE: Spain - 11/30/2020 4:57:49 PM   
Chernobyl

 

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There is an event if the Entente declares war on Netherlands that reduces NM in Britain+France due to the "public being shocked"

Perhaps there should also be an event which severely reduces NM in England/France if you declare war on Spain.

(in reply to Chernobyl)
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RE: Spain - 11/30/2020 5:27:27 PM   
mdsmall

 

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quote:

It's crazy that the Germans get this boost without any connection to Spain and Spain should probably be a major for this reason only.


I like the idea of making Spain a neutral Major that only enters the war if attacked or through diplomacy. That way, its MPPs only accrue to Spain itself - not its controlling Major. However, if it does enter the war, there should be a way of allies sending resources to it through a convoy overland via France (if it is attacked by the CP) or by sea from one of the Central Powers, if attacked by the Entente. There should also be more military and diplomatic repercussions to a DOW against Spain, along the lines suggested by others. It is not something that should be undertaken lightly.

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RE: Spain - 12/2/2020 9:01:30 PM   
Tendraline

 

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Speaking from experience, I have to disagree with the assertion that France would necessarily have enough troops to actually execute the conquest of Spain.

In one of my AI games, the AI managed to botch Schlieffen, leaving the corps in Brussels quite healthy (I left, though) and just barely managing to take Reims. However, the pressure intensified, and by mid-1915 most of my troops were half-health, there were gaps in the Champagne sector, and I almost lost Verdun and Nancy for good. I also had the Italians, who reached Lyon, on my back and sent, yes, five corps to deal with them. I was saved by Russia, which managed to take Oppeln and secure every town in Galicia except for Tarnow, and Romania.

In a human game, the pressure would be even more intense because there's no way Schlieffen would be botched like that and, as a result, everything up to Amiens would be indefensible and France would be even more mauled. Italy's neutrality would allow you to send troops elsewhere, but you would have less to send. Not the five as planned.

That said, Spain has three major problems: its army is terrible, its troops are dispersed, and strikes. Indeed, Spain's army being terrible is historical, but it knew about it; during the war it increased its army to 180,000, an increase of 40,000, or two in-game half-strength corps. And meanwhile, if Spain is to join the war, it would also move its armies to the borders, not the weird in-game distribution with a third of the army in Madrid. The equivalent is moving three corps from Lorraine to Orleans or from Galicia to Hungary, which is ludicrous at best. And, apparently, there is no one leading all of these forces or planning the war. But it gets worse, as every time Spain is attacked the UGT and CGT cast their vote for French domination by devastating supply along Spain's most defensible feature, the Pyrenees.

So yeah, Spain needs buffing, but it would be amazing to see France pull a proper defense during a historical-esque playthrough. The idea of Spain being a neutral major is good, but it would also need to go to war in a semi-ready state and a certain amount of tech just to survive. And if Spain favors one side initially and goes to the other, it might result in one player spending MPPs for their opponent.

< Message edited by Tendraline -- 12/2/2020 9:03:29 PM >

(in reply to mdsmall)
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RE: Spain - 12/3/2020 4:56:13 AM   
OldCrowBalthazor


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Tendraline

Speaking from experience, I have to disagree with the assertion that France would necessarily have enough troops to actually execute the conquest of Spain.

In one of my AI games, the AI managed to botch Schlieffen, leaving the corps in Brussels quite healthy (I left, though) and just barely managing to take Reims. However, the pressure intensified, and by mid-1915 most of my troops were half-health, there were gaps in the Champagne sector, and I almost lost Verdun and Nancy for good. I also had the Italians, who reached Lyon, on my back and sent, yes, five corps to deal with them. I was saved by Russia, which managed to take Oppeln and secure every town in Galicia except for Tarnow, and Romania.

In a human game, the pressure would be even more intense because there's no way Schlieffen would be botched like that and, as a result, everything up to Amiens would be indefensible and France would be even more mauled. Italy's neutrality would allow you to send troops elsewhere, but you would have less to send. Not the five as planned.

That said, Spain has three major problems: its army is terrible, its troops are dispersed, and strikes. Indeed, Spain's army being terrible is historical, but it knew about it; during the war it increased its army to 180,000, an increase of 40,000, or two in-game half-strength corps. And meanwhile, if Spain is to join the war, it would also move its armies to the borders, not the weird in-game distribution with a third of the army in Madrid. The equivalent is moving three corps from Lorraine to Orleans or from Galicia to Hungary, which is ludicrous at best. And, apparently, there is no one leading all of these forces or planning the war. But it gets worse, as every time Spain is attacked the UGT and CGT cast their vote for French domination by devastating supply along Spain's most defensible feature, the Pyrenees.

So yeah, Spain needs buffing, but it would be amazing to see France pull a proper defense during a historical-esque playthrough. The idea of Spain being a neutral major is good, but it would also need to go to war in a semi-ready state and a certain amount of tech just to survive. And if Spain favors one side initially and goes to the other, it might result in one player spending MPPs for their opponent.


These are all good points. This 'Question of Spain' has turned into a really interesting discussion.

One thing that came to my mind was that there is a precedent of Spain being attacked from a "to be' great power, and that is the USA in 1898. The Spanish-American War was according to some views, a naked aggression. What ever view is held in this matter, the result was that major strategic and monetary gains were made by the USA.

Now that event is recent history in the timeline of this war, so I'm beginning to think an Entente attack on Spain isn't such a far fetched idea after all...which leads to a possible 'buffering' or 'beefing up' of this country's OOB and or other factors to mitigate a fast rollover of this state.

Leave it to the players of this great game to push the envelope to see what gives.

(in reply to Tendraline)
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RE: Spain - 12/6/2020 10:51:17 PM   
Chernobyl

 

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The 1898 war would be termed a "colonial war" in Europa Universalis or Victoria. Viewed much differently from conquering and annexing the homeland of a european power.

I don't really see any historical reason anyone would have attacked Spain in WWI except possibly to use it as a base to (re)conquer France or Gibraltar. Conquering Spain also wouldn't have provided much economic or manpower benefit, too. It wasn't nearly as industrialized as compared to how many MPP per turn you get in game, and Spanish manpower wouldn't have willingly fought in the trenches for a country which conquered Spain.

It should probably have its MPP cut in half and only give a reduced output (50%) if conquered. Reduce the number of towns (it has almost as many towns as France), change a few cities (Cordoba, Granada) into towns, possibly delete one of the mines.

USA should swing 25% towards Central Powers if Entente attacks Spain. Probably all of Europe should be disgusted too. Switzerland as a neutral power should be highly alarmed and swing sharply. The other small countries like Netherlands Denmark Sweden Norway Bulgaria and Romania should give a mild diplomatic (10%) reaction.

As far as diplo-annexing Spain, the cost of diplomacy chits should probably be higher (75? 100?) for Spain instead of 50.



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RE: Spain - 12/7/2020 1:48:22 AM   
OldCrowBalthazor


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Chernobyl

The 1898 war would be termed a "colonial war" in Europa Universalis or Victoria. Viewed much differently from conquering and annexing the homeland of a european power.

I don't really see any historical reason anyone would have attacked Spain in WWI except possibly to use it as a base to (re)conquer France or Gibraltar. Conquering Spain also wouldn't have provided much economic or manpower benefit, too. It wasn't nearly as industrialized as compared to how many MPP per turn you get in game, and Spanish manpower wouldn't have willingly fought in the trenches for a country which conquered Spain.

It should probably have its MPP cut in half and only give a reduced output (50%) if conquered. Reduce the number of towns (it has almost as many towns as France), change a few cities (Cordoba, Granada) into towns, possibly delete one of the mines.

USA should swing 25% towards Central Powers if Entente attacks Spain. Probably all of Europe should be disgusted too. Switzerland as a neutral power should be highly alarmed and swing sharply. The other small countries like Netherlands Denmark Sweden Norway Bulgaria and Romania should give a mild diplomatic (10%) reaction.

As far as diplo-annexing Spain, the cost of diplomacy chits should probably be higher (75? 100?) for Spain instead of 50.



quote:

The 1898 war would be termed a "colonial war" in Europa Universalis or Victoria. Viewed much differently from conquering and annexing the homeland of a european power.


Yeah, I agree with this distinction between a grabbing of colonies and the conquering of a state. I was illustrating that Spain was weak, and that a causa belli for the flimsiest reasons could be engineered.

I like your suggestion that Switzerland in particular would be even more suggestive to the Central Powers cause if Spain was attacked by the Entente plus diplo hits to the other smaller powers. A minimum hit of 25% to the USA seems reasonable also..at this time its range is 11%-20% as pointed out by Bill. During my hotseat test last week, I didn't notice that hit...but I didn't preform the necessary rigor by writing down the previous USA turn's belligerency and assumed it didn't budge. I tried it again and it went back pro-CP %16.

(in reply to Chernobyl)
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