Spartakus is an upcoming alternate history modification for the popular strategy game Hearts of Iron IV. It is set in a universe where multiple post-Great War communist revolutions in Europe succeed, most notably in Germany.
The Great War was a time of death and suffering, but also set the right conditions for what philosophers such as Karl Marx could've only dreamed of: World Revolution. Within only five years, two of the worlds major powers had been swept up in the red revolutionary tide.
Now, the world stands deeply divided along ideological lines. The British Empire, seeing themselves a "bulwark" against the revolution, have expended much of their interwar resources on preventing additional revolutions across the globe. However, in 1929, the already struggling post-war economy had enough. In the infamous London Market Crash, whatever was left of the prosperity of Britain has withered away. Now, its Empire is threatened with collapse as its allies continue to distance themselves. In Burma, disgruntled socialists and monarchists have risen up in a full scale revolt against the crown, and it seems likely that the British reign in India will collapse in the coming years.
In the Soviet Union, the party continues to struggle after the sudden death of Vladimir Lenin in 1931. Divided among various internal cliques, revolutionary politician Lev Kamenev has taken the reigns of the Soviet Union for the moment. How long his shaky reign over the party will last is up for question, but nonetheless an end to this power struggle is necessary for the Soviet Union to ever recover from the Russian Civil War.
In Germany, the destruction of both the Great War and the Civil War is still quite visible. The Rhineland remains occupied under a French collaborationist regime, and Baden-Württemberg is under the local monarchy where the former Kaiser Wilhelm has taken refuge. Red Germany, or the FSRD, continues to dedicated most of its resources towards building Germany back to its former glory under the reign of revolutionary leader Rosa Luxemburg. This extended plan, however, has generated much discontent among the various represented groups, including the Bolshevik faction within the KPD, as well as the anarcho-syndicalist FAUD and the democratic socialist USPD.
It is now New Years Day, 1932. With communist and socialist regimes rooted in the Soviet Union, Germany, Bavaria, Hungary, Slovakia, Poland and Mongolia, it is becoming quite clear that Marx was correct to say:
"A spectre is haunting Europe — the spectre of communism."
With the Russian Revolution in 1917 ending Russian involvement in the Great War, a red tide across Europe seemed inevitable. Under the guidance of revolutionary Vladimir Lenin, the Red Army clashed with the opposing White Army in what would become known as the Russian Civil War. This started a wave of revolutions from Germany, to Hungary, to Italy, to Persia, to Spain, to Portugal and beyond.
In 1918, a battered German Empire signed an armistice with the Entente following the intervention of the United States in the previous year. With this, their fate was sealed. On the 9th of November, Emperor Wilhelm II abdicated, and the Weimar Republic was declared. This was not, however, the end. In the January 1919 elections, the Communist Party of Germany (KPD) emerged with over 24% of the vote. On May 1st 1919, a bloody year long Civil War would erupt, with the communists initially on the losing side.
However, 1920 brought new hope, for the Red Army had emerged victorious in the war with Poland. With the Russian Civil War coming to a close, the Red Army swept into Germany, turning the tide rapidly. The unprepared western allies, economically battered with a war weary population, were unable to intervene until the very last moment, upon which a treaty was the only option. On the 19th of November, the final remnants of the "White Army" in Germany were defeated, and victory was declared by the KPD.
Germany would now be known as the Free Socialist Republic of Germany.
The reason 1932 was chosen was to give a relatively long "prelude" time of roughly four years, where most of the events that will shape the eventual meat of the game occur. This means that Civil War's will occur, power struggles will ensue, coups and revolutions will topple seemingly stable governments and colonies will rebel. Each and every event will ultimately shape the politics of every nation on the map one way or another. The goal is to include content lasting until at least 1945-1950, and the AI will be modified accordingly so it does not throw out mass amounts of divisions and slow down the game before the actual conflicts break out. With that said, you should not be expecting major conflicts to take until 1939 to break out, as many will break out much earlier.
Since Spartakus is heavily inspired by narrative driven modifications such as Kaiserreich, it will host similar government systems, such as the Darkest Hour style cabinet. However, with the latest inclusion of a built in stability system, systems such as economic stability will be put in the place of the standard political power stability system and the party popularity system will receiving different effects and capabilities including a coalition mechanic between various parties of different ideologies. Spartakus will also extensively use the new decisions system to add on to the national focus system in order to make it more interesting during peace time.
Applications for developers are currently open and to apply you must only fill out this short form: Goo.gl
If you bothered to read that all, thanks! I appreciate it. There is plenty more to check out related to the mod, however. Please look at some of the links below to find some extra information and to talk with the devs:
Welcome to the fourth Progress Report. We are going to be trying something new with this PR with covering the overall development of an area on the map. In this case it is Persia. Please provide feedback on this format!
There has been a few small changes since the regional teaser a few days ago, but this is (for the most part) the final map of the Persia and the surrounding region.
Persia and the surrounding region has also received a major province and state rework to better fit the concept.
The Fars government, officially known as the Sublime State of Persia, is the largest and most widely recognized government in Persia.
It is ruled, de jure, by the Qajar dynasty, though the power of the dynasty over Persian politics has gradually been diminished since the Persian Constitutional Revolution in 1906, and even more so since the implementation of the Franco-British-White Russian regime following the Great War. In 1932, the power of the Shah, Mahmoud Mirza, is purely rubber stamp, and the unpopularity of the Qajar dynasty has left the Fars government as a republic all but in name.
Qajar Persia is primarily known as the Fars government because much of the politics of the government revolves around the southern portion of the country, mainly in the Fars Province. Although Tehran is still under the control of the Fars government, all governance is done from Shiraz, the capital of Fars Province. This is due to a combination of primarily safety based factors, such as the proximity of the Gilan Soviet to Tehran as well as the ongoing nationalist revolt in Khorasan.
Though the Fars government is the largest, it faces multiple threats internal and external.
In our timeline, the Gilan Soviet was crushed when support from the RSFSR and aligned states was unable to continue due to pressure from imperialist powers at home. However, in Spartakus, the diversion of allied efforts to combat the German Red Army meant less pressure on the Russians, allowing the support for the workers in Gilan to continue. With the end of the Russian Civil War in 1922 the Fars government, recognising they would not be able to combat the Gilan Soviet any longer, signed an armistice ending combat with the region, though still claiming it as part of Iran. Despite this, during the fighting preceding the armistice, some of the Anglo-French forces assigned to protect the Ottoman Autonomous Region of Kurdistan moved in to seize the city of Tabriz from Gilan's control. The Premier of the Gilan Soviet is Ja’far Pishevari, an Azeri communist.
The Gilan Soviet remains keen on establishing itself as the legitimate government of Persia, with the ultimate goal of declaring the Persian Soviet Republic.
The ongoing instability in Fars could enable Gilan to move and seize Tehran. One such opportunity may arise in the event of a possible British invasion of Fars in order to bring it under full British control and combat both Gilani and Soviet interests in the area.
Backed by the Comintern with strong support from the Soviet Union, Gilan offers the primary long term threat to Fars, though the lack of development and population in regions under their control gives Fars a fighting chance.
The Iranian Nationalist government of Khorasan is the other main opposition to the central government of Fars. Unrest due to the domination of Farsi politics by the British and White Russian remnants lead to the declaration of a new government, representing the Persian people rather than foreign interests. Having long outstayed its welcome following the failed reformist coup of 1931, it continues to sway the more “radical” reformist elements within Persia. It is widely believed to be held in much higher regards among the populace of Persia than the Fars government, but its popularity is spited by the lack of manpower and resources in the largely desertous area it is based in.
The formerly autonomous region of Khuzestan, the domain of Iranian Arabs, broke away from the Fars government, declaring independence in 1922. Though it is a tribal federation, it is dominated primarily by Arabs. It is unrecognized by Persia who still claims the oil rich region. Some have suggested a union between Iraq and Khuzestan to combat the threat of Persian invasion, though this is opposed by Britain who controls the Iraqi foreign policy. Though Khuzestan is currently backed by the British government, the relationship is fragile and Khuzestan will have to keep an eye on where British favoritism lies if it wants to survive.
In July 1918 a Menshevik-Socialist Revolutionary coalition was set up by the Railway workers of the Trans-Caspian Railway, forming the Transcaspian Government.
General Wilfrid Malleson had been dispatched by the British Government to resist the Bolshevik forces, and assisted the Transcaspian Government by sending them a machine gun team across the border from India. This team stopped the Transcaspian forces being completely overrun by the Bolsheviks. The Transcaspian Government was largely in a weak position. It had no economy, and was existing on the money it had gained from the soviets when it took over. The main economy was based on cotton, however it had no means to export this, and so by December 1918 was on the brink of collapse, appealing to the British to send troops stabilising the area. While this worked for a time, when the British withdrew in 1919, the government crumbled instantly.
Yet with their much more pressing matters to attend to in Europe, the Bolshevik government in Moscow was unable to spare the attention to retake the area, leaving a power vacuum which by 1920 was filled by the Transcaspian Army, a military administration lead by influential general Oraz Sirdar. The bandits of Transcaspia harass the Caspian coastal regions of Persia, and amidst the crisis in Khorasan the provinces of Golestan and Northern Khorasan have effectively come under the control of the Sirdar regime. With multiple other more pressing issues, Fars is hardly capable of ending this banditry, though some have suggested the possibility of cooperation between the Farsi and the Transcaspians in an effort to bring down the rebellious opposition in Khorasan and legitimize Sirdar’s government, which aims to claim the entire Turkestan region.
The British, French and Ottoman backed Kurdistan has occupied much of the Persian ethnically Kurdish lands. Anglo-French troops also occupied the Tabriz area and land around Lake Urmia to deny the region to the Gilan Soviet, ultimately assigning it as an autonomous zone of Kurdistan due to the small Kurdish minority. This hasn’t been without a cost, as Gilan backed insurgents regularly harass the residing Anglo-Kurdish forces. Additionally, Kurdistan is claimed by the Kingdom of Iraq, a British satellite, and these competing spheres could mean these lands falling back into the hands of Fars or even the Gilan Soviet.
Bukhara is a small but populated Emirate in southern Central Asia, bordering Afghanistan. It was established in 1747 by the current Manghit dynasty, which is descended from the Mongols. After losing a war to the Russian Empire in 1868, it was turned into a protectorate and lost much of its territory in 1873. However, the Russian Civil War in 1917 radically changed the situation, and Bukhara found itself without an overlord again.
Despite this, reformists calling themselves the “Young Bukharans” nonetheless attempted to overthrow the Emir, Mohammed Alim Khan, in favor of incorporation as a Soviet Republic. However, with the commencement of the German Civil War, late civil war efforts from the Red Army became almost exclusively focused on aiding Germany and containing Japan and as a result Bukhara was spared from invasion.
An attempt by the Young Bukharans to overthrow the Emir failed disastrously in 1922 with the help of Turkish nationalist Enver Pasha, who had moved to Bukhara after the Great War to promote the pan-Turkic Basmachi movement. Pasha still leads that bloc alongside tribal leaders like Ibrahim Bek, and this has resulted in significant pressure on the Emir to claim the entirety of Turkestan. The Young Bukharans were sent into exile into the USSR and have engaged only in banditry and low level sabotage in recent years.
In the south and southeast, Persia’s oil rich regions are exploited by the United Kingdom, who has fully occupied the Sīstān province under the puppet government of British Baluchistan, as well as directly seizing the strategic islands of Qeshm and Hormuz. These exploits have brought Anglo-Persian relations to an all time low and some speak of war.
Thanks for reading! As asked earlier, please provide feedback on this new PR model so we know whether we should do more like these in the future.
Remember to join the Discord, as many teasers are posted on there daily. Feel free to ask questions on there as well. Discord.gg
Also, if you are interested in joining the Dev Team, please remember all you need to do is fill out this form: Goo.gl
Dev Report 16: Bulgarian Lore, Economics in Norway & the Estonian Betrayal.
Dev Report 15: Indian Leaders 2: Mountainous Boogaloo, Baltic Victory Points & Swedish Vikings.
Dev Report 14: A Junta in Italy, Yugoslavism and Anarchists in Portugal.
Dev Report 13: Crisis in Argentina, a Blind King in Albania, Southern Rhodesia and Gajda's Affair.
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