Hearts of Iron IV – 47th Development Diary – 4th of March 2016

China is always a rather difficult beast for Hearts of Iron games, still we have put on our thinking cap and seen what we can do to at least make things better. So as the game opens we have the Chinas at peace but hostile to each other. (Seb: China is fun to play. And fun to invade too! Also the borders are different from the HoI3 ones. Pretty hard to get a proper historical picture of that time since even Wikipedia throws you an Unified China map. Yay.)
The Kuomintang government will get the option to launch an offensive against the communist insurgents, which will eventually end up in the possibility of a border war between Mao and Chiang. There will be no actual fighting, but units in border states will start to suffer attrition.

Maybe not 100% accurate but we are much more interested in what happens when Japan attacks and the peace afterwards. Should a Nationalist player chose to go for a real war, we’ve given Mao the ‘Cornered Fox’ trait which will help him defend.
Sometime during the hostilities, the Xi’an incident occurs and pressures Chiang to accept a temporary truce with Mao. This is the first step towards the Chinas looking outwards to the imminent threat of Japan that looms to the east.
When Japan attacks China the Nationalists get an event that allows them to set up the Chinese United Front faction against Japan. Communist China will get the option to join this faction. If they do then there is a follow up event where they annex Shanxi (a player Shanxi can refuse this). The other warlord states (except Sinkiang) will get the option to join with the Nationalist Chinese. Sinkiang will continue to be the odd man out until a war between the USSR and Germany breaks out. At that point they will throw their lot in the Chiang because the USSR is now a little too busy.
Our united China has proven a much more effective road block to Japan (more balancing to be done there but we are pleased with our progress). If Japan gets defeated the Chinese United Front will end, this was always an alliance of convenience for the two sides. Sneaky Mao will take advantage of the confusion to seize northern China and Manchuria. This is part a reflection of communist strength in those areas but also to give the PRC a better territorial base from which to get the civil war rolling.
Before we kick off the civil war we first give the PRC some free troops (supplied from unspecified communists somewhere in the world). With the PRC armies now nicely reinforced with their new territorial base, we fire an event to kick of the war between the two sides, to help the communists along we also hit the KMT forces with a morale penalty for the opening stages of the war. China is far more finely balanced than before.