World tension

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World Tension at 100%

World Tension represents the overall level of fear and anxiety that exists among the nations of the World. The number displayed can be between 0% and 100%. Total World Tension can be higher than 100%, but there are no additional effects beyond the 100% limit—the overflow instead acts as a "buffer" against events that decrease Tension.

The level of World Tension has several impacts on gameplay, in particular allowing or limiting political decisions, national focuses, and more. It is shown as an icon depicting Earth, with flames engulfing it more fully the higher current World Tension is. Generally, the higher the World Tension, the more popular support nations have for taking belligerent actions.

Impacts on World Tension

Increase in World Tension

The following increases the level of World Tension:

Decrease in World Tension

The following can cause a decrease in World Tension:

Decay over time

World Tension is the sum of every positive and negative event that has occurred to date reduced by their decay. Each completed individual event will gradually decay toward 0 at .1 per month. Note that this also affects events which reduce World Tension, e.g. peace treaties reduce World Tension, but their effects decay just like aggressive events. World Tension events from countries at war do not decay.

For example, if your current World Tension list has:

  • 2% Germany Demanded Sudetenland
  • 16.7% Treaty of Valencia ending Spanish Civil War
  • -1.4% Italian Peace Treaty w/ Ethiopia
  • 0.6% Militarization of Rhineland
  • Total: 17.9%

The next month, World Tension will change to:

  • 1.9% Germany Demanded Sudetenland
  • 16.6% Treaty of Valencia ending Spanish Civil War
  • -1.3% Italian Peace Treaty w/ Ethiopia
  • 0.5% Militarization of Rhineland
  • Total: 17.7%

Effects

World Tension reduces the time (and cost) of justifying of wargoals by up to 50% at 100% World Tension.

Ideological effects

Different ideologies have different effects on World Tension—both in terms of generation and in terms of how much World Tension is needed to take certain actions.

Tension required

Some national focuses can lower the threshold. Below you find the base threshold without any modifiers.

Action Ideology
Communism icon.
Communist
Democracy icon.
Democratic
Fascism icon.
Fascist
Non-aligned icon.
Non-aligned
Guarantee independence - 25% - 40%
Send volunteers - 50% - 40%
Join faction - 80% - 40%
Justify war goal - - - 50%
Declare War - 100% - 25%
Lend-Lease - 50% - 40%

Communism.png
Communism

World Tension threshold:

  • Comintern impact on tension threshold: -50%

Communist countries are not limited by World Tension.

Democracy.png
Democracy

Democracies cannot justify wargoals against other democracies.

Democracies have the most restrictive tension thresholds:

  • Allies impact on tension thresholds: −10%
  • Guarantee independence: 25%
  • Send volunteers: 50%
  • Join faction: 80%
  • Declare war: 100%
  • Send Lend-Lease: 50%

Fascism.png
Fascism

World Tension thresholds:

  • None.

Fascist countries are not limited by World Tension.

Neutrality.png
Non-Aligned

World Tension threshold:

  • Neutral faction impact on tension threshold: +10%
  • Guarantee independence: 40%
  • Send volunteers: 40%
  • Join faction: 40%
  • Justify war goal: 50%
  • Declare war: 25%
  • Send Lend-Lease: 40%

National Focus that impact World Tension by country

Germany

  • RhinelandRhineland +5
  • Anti-Comintern PactAnti-Comintern Pact +2
  • Anschluss +10
  • Reassert Eastern Claims +3
  • Demand Sudetenland +3
  • Fate of Czechoslovakia +5
  • Danzig or War +5
  • War with France +5
  • Demand Slovenia +2
  • Second Ljubljana Award +2

Japan

  • Chinese Border Incident +1
  • Reinforce the Soviet Border +1

Italy

  • Claims on Yugoslavia +4

Soviet Union

  • Claim Sinkiang +2
  • Claim the Straits +2
  • The Comintern +1
  • Claims in Baltic +1
  • Baltic Security +1
  • Claims on Poland +3
  • Claim on Bessarabia +1

United Kingdom

  • Benelux Intervention +1
  • Scandinavian Intervention +1

USA

  • Black Chamber Operation +1
  • Preemptive Intervention +1

World Tension needed for National Focus

Some National Focuses can't be chosen unless world tension is above a certain limit. Most of them are also possible if the country is at war.

United Kingdom

5% 10% 20% 50%
General Rearmament Issue Gasmasks Military Training

United States

25% 30% 40% 75% 80%
Prepare Intervention Military Construction The Giant Wakes Limited Intervention USACE Projects