The Second Sino-Japanese War

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The Second Sino-Japanese War (SJW) was historically started by Japan under pretense of the Marco Polo bridge incident on the 7th of July 1937, which led to 8 years of war in China until Japan's capitulation on September 9th, 1945. In Hearts of Iron 4, the SJW is represented by a number of mechanics designed to allow for the slow paced warfare that historically took place. This is a feature of the Waking the TigerWaking the Tiger DLC. To start the SJW, due to Japan's reluctance to justify war goals under Emperor Hirohito, Japan needs to take the Marco Polo Bridge Incident national focus. Alternatively, Japan can wait until World Tensionworld tension hits the 75% mark to justify a war goal or until any Chinese faction nation takes the Pick a Fight With Japan or Provoke Japan national focus and starts a war. In the latter two cases, Japan will bypass the Marco Polo Bridge Incident national focus and enter the conflict without the according debuffs.

National Spirits in the SJW[edit]

Japan - Marco Polo Bridge Incident[edit]

The Marco Polo Bridge Incident icon
The Marco Polo Bridge Incident
Flag of China China, Flag of Communist China Communist China, Flag of Shanxi Shanxi, Flag of Xibei San Ma Xibei San Ma, Flag of Yunnan Yunnan, Flag of Guangxi Clique Guangxi Clique and Flag of Sinkiang Sinkiang:
  • Attack Bonus against Country: -50.0%
  • Defense Bonus against Country: -25.0%
Japan is poor in resources, but our neighbours are not. We must take from them what we lack, and only require an excuse to begin doing so. Such an excuse could be provided by a few enterprising soldiers, after which the Emperor will have no choice but to assent to a war, no matter how ill-prepared…

This Japanese national focus serves to debuff Japan's army in the beginning of the SJW. The debuffs can be undone in five steps by repeatedly taking the escalate the war in China decision. Taking the Secure China focus removes the Marco Polo debuffs entirely and allows the Ichi Go decision to be taken.


Nationalist China and Warlords - Army Corruption[edit]

Army Corruption icon
Army Corruption
  • Division Attack: −50%
  • Division Defense: −50%
  • Mobilization speed: −30%
Our armed force are rife with corruption and nepotism. If we want to turn them into a potent fighting force, we will have to engage in a lengthy and expensive program of army reform.

The Chinese starting national spirit gives the chinese factions in the SJW debuffs similar, but worse than the Japanese. It can be removed by taking the Army reform decisions.

Japanese Decisions[edit]

Escalate the War in China[edit]

Escalate the war in China icon
Escalate the war in China
Change national spirit Marco Polo Bridge Incident:

The decision to Escalate the war in China costs 25Political Power and can be repeated every 30 days. After 5 times, the effects of the Marco Polo Bridge Incident national spirit are gone.

Ichi Go[edit]

Ichi Go icon
Ichi Go
Flag of United States United States gain +10% base War Support

Flag of China China, Flag of Communist China Communist China, Flag of Shanxi Shanxi, Flag of Xibei San Ma Xibei San Ma, Flag of Yunnan Yunnan, Flag of Guangxi Clique Guangxi Clique and Flag of Sinkiang Sinkiang:

  • Attack Bonus against Country: +20.0%
  • Defense Bonus against Country: +5.0%
  • Activate Mission: Conquer China
The end of the war is in sight. With a final push and determined effort we can bring the conflict to a swift conclusion. However, should we not be able to grasp victory within the next year, we may suffer internal instability as public opinion rises against the increased war effort...

The Ichi Go decision gives a buff to Japanese forces vs Chinese factions for the 365 days duration of the Conquer China mission, which on succesful completion gives +5% Stability and +10% War support, or the reverse effects if failed. The mission is accomplished by capitulating Flag of China China. It costs 50 Political Power PP to take it.

Nationalist China and Warlords Decisions[edit]

Army Reform[edit]

Army Reform icon
Army Reform
  • Change national spirit Army Corruption:
  • Army experience Army Experience Cost: 100
  • Division Attack: +16,7%
  • Division Defense: +16,7%
  • Mobilization Speed: +10%

The decision requires the Army Reform national focus, takes 90 days to complete and costs 100 army XP. Taking it three times removes the army related debuffs for China.

Scorched Earth Tactics[edit]

Scorched Earth Tactics icon
Scorched Earth Tactics
  • Damage the Infrastructure Infrastructure of any states adjacent to occupied states by 3 levels at the cost of 25 Political Power Political Power
  • Re-enactable once every 30 days
In a struggle for national survival, nothing is unthinkable and every option must be considered.

Industrial Evacuations[edit]

Industrial Evacuations icon
Industrial Evacuations
A modern war is won in the factories. An army without guns is nothing but a group of people with silly hats.

Border Clashes[edit]

During the SJW, China, Chinese warlord factions and Communist China may engage in Decision category border conflicts.pngBorder Clashes against each other.