The German Reich was instituted in 1933 and by led Adolf Hitler. It was the primary Axis Power in the European Theatre. Historically, the German Reich precipitated the Second World War by attacking Poland on 1 September 1939, and the German Reich closed the European Theatre of the Second World War by its surrender between 4 May and 8 May 1945.
- Main article: German events
- Main article: German national focus tree
As one of the seven Major powers, German Reich has a unique National Focus tree. The National Focus tree includes both historical and counterfactual options for the player, and the AI is strongly weighted to follow the historical path when playing a "Historical Focus" game. Notable alliance opportunities are with the USSR, Poland, and the Scandinavian countries. Most of the Focuses for Germany are ultimatums for states/provinces, which may result in: acquiring territory, acquiring a war goal to obtain territory, or immediate war. The additional research tech is quite deep, requiring Industrial Effort II, Air Innovations II, and then Rocketry (among others). An Extra Research Slot becomes available should Rocketry be completed.
Should the German Reich pursue the Anschluss, the German National Focus tree provides levers for reordering Central and Northern Europe. The German Reich may make peace with or make territorial demands of Czechoslovakia, Lithuania and Poland, Yugoslavia and Greece, and Scandinavia. The possible levers reach from Norway and Denmark in the north to the Soviet Union in east, around through Turkey, Greece, Italy and Spain in the south, around up through France to the low countries.
Whether controlled by the player or the AI, Germany will be dictating the course of many events in Hearts of Iron IV.
|Army Technology||Naval Technology||Air Technology||Electronics & Industry|
As a Fascist country, the German Reich begins with slightly negative relationships with most of the world. In Europe, only Hungary and Italy, countries with Fascist majorities, have positive relations with the German Reich. The Treaty of Versailles demilitarized Germany's border with Belgium, Luxembourg, and part of the Netherlands and France. The German Reich is the leader of the Axis at the start of the game but has no allies yet at the beginning of the grand campaign.
Staff and Designers
These are choices of ministers and design companies for the German Reich.
In 1936, the German Reich is one of the largest countries in Europe, spanning parts of both Western and Central Europe from the Rhine to Silesia, and from the North and Baltic Seas to the Alps. Clockwise from the north, Germany borders Denmark, Poland, Czechoslovakia, Austria, Switzerland, France, Luxembourg, Belgium and the Netherlands. Additionally, the exclave of East Prussia runs from the Baltic Sea to the north to Lithuania to the northeast and has Poland to the east, south, and west. The border states of Rhineland and Moselland are demilitarised in 1936, and the German Reich cannot move forces into the area until it completes the Rhineland national focus.
The coastline consists mostly of flat, arable land and the East Frisian marshes, which together form part of the North European Plain. Much of the German interior is heavily forested, most prominent being the Black Forest region near the Alsatian border. Foothills dominate the Czechoslovakian border. The southern border with Switzerland and Austria is somewhat mountainous, although very little Alpine territory actually resides within prewar German borders; Lake Constance (the Bodensee) forms part of this southern border with Switzerland and Austria. The Rhine and Danube rivers both run partially through Germany towards the North Sea and Black Sea respectively, whilst the Elbe, Oder and Weser all run to the German coastline and the major ports of Hamburg, Stettin and Bremen. The Kiel Canal traverses the German state of Schleswig-Holstein to connect the North and Baltic seas, allowing German and allied vessels to bypass the Danish straits.
There are many large urban areas in Germany, and most German states host at least one major city. The capital, Berlin, and the regional hubs Frankfurt and Munich, are the most important cities from a strategic point of view, and the large Rhine-Ruhr conurbation in the northwest is also a vital, highly industrialised region. Germany's largest naval bases are situated at Wilhelmshaven and Kiel, and the nation has a generally high infrastructure level.
|Conscription Law||Economy Law||Trade Law|
| Limited Conscription
|| Partial Mobilization
|| Limited Exports
40 Military Factories
10 Naval Dockyard
32 Civilian Factories
The German industrial capacity is formidable. Germany possesses the largest military production capacity out of all European countries and its civilian industry is on par with the other European major countries. The only thing Germany lacks is a sizable naval production capacity, something that eventually needs to be addressed in order to challenge the navies of other countries.
These numbers represent the available resources, depending on trade law a certain amount may be traded away. As far as resources are concerned, Germany falls a little short compared to the United Kingdom and France. While Germany has access to a large amount of steel and a good amount of aluminium, they have a severe shortage of everything else and can easily become dependent of foreign import to fuel their military apparatus. Luckily, the Rubber and Oil shortage can be at least partially mitigated with synthetic resource refineries while metals (Tungsten and Chromium) can be secured throughout Europe.
|24 Infantry Divisions||1 Motorized Division||1 Mountain Divisions||1 Cavalry Division||3 Light Tank Divisions|
In 1936, German Reich's Wehrmacht is relatively small compared to the armies of the other major powers. However, quality is its strength, the Wehrmacht is well trained, with all divisions being regulars and thus receiving 25% bonuses in combat. The Wehrmacht is also well equipped, with no equipment shortages, large infantry divisions (a width of 18), and support artillery and engineers. Most importantly, it has a highly elite mobile segment, with 3 light tank Panzer divisions and one motorised SS division. The Panzers are mostly light tank 1, but light tank 2 is already researched and in production for upgrades. This 4 division unit can be dangerous if deployed effectively to punching through enemy lines on plains and then aggressively encircling enemies.
Thus, there is no need to wait for a slow rearmament in single player. the player can easily crush the UK (through a surprise invasion) or France with its starting army with the right strategy. Even in peacetime, the elite mobile divisions can be sent as volunteers to Spain or Japan for extremely decisive impacts. Neither Republican Spain nor China will usually have countermeasures against aggressive encirclement by Panzers, that being said, ending the wars too quickly may have negative strategic effects due to rocketing world tension.
Examples of alternative division template names for German Reich include:
- Mountaineers - Gebirgs-Division
- Marines - Marine-Division or Marine-Korps
- Paratroopers - Flieger-Division or Fallschirmjäger-Division (after 1943)
- Motorized - Motorisierte-Division
- Mechanized - Panzergrenadier-Division
- Armor - Panzer-Division
The Kriegsmarine ("War Navy") is small and outdated in 1936, and without serious rearmament efforts it won't stand a chance against the Royal Navy due to a lack of modern capital ships and air power. However, it can be rebuilt in the time available into an effective fighting force, especially if operating under the protection of the Luftwaffe.
Historically, the Third Reich had begun to implement a massive shipbuilding programme known as Plan Z that called for no fewer than ten modern battleships (including the Scharnhorst and Bismarck classes), four aircraft carriers (including the unfinished Graf Zeppelin) and three battlecruisers (the planned O-class) to lead a large fighting force of surface raiders capable of both operating far out into the Atlantic against convoys and fighting pitched fleet battles in the North Sea against the Royal Navy, but efforts stalled as resources and yards were diverted to more critical materiel following the outbreak of war.
Production shifted almost entirely to U-boats in a bid to cut Britain off from the resources of the Commonwealth and USA through unrestricted submarine warfare, and by the end of the war the Kriegsmarine was overwhelmingly comprised of U-boats, many of very advanced design that heavily influenced post-War Allied submarines after the fall of the Third Reich. The player can choose either of these directions through the small naval branch of Germany's national focus tree, although Plan Z will take some more time to execute than the construction of a submarine raiding fleet.
Germany starts with some technological advantages in naval design, including 1936 designs for light cruisers, destroyers and submarines, and in 1936 has eight Type IIA U-boats and four Type 1934-class destroyers under construction, as well as the famous Admiral Graf Spee "pocket battleship" (heavy cruiser) about to leave the drydock. It has two manufacturers to choose from - Germaniawerft and Blohm & Voss - which respectively confer bonuses for capital ships and raiding fleets.
80 Close Air Support
72 Naval Bombers
480 Tactical Bombers
4 Transport Planes
The Luftwaffe in 1936 is smaller than the RAF, which is usually its main adversary, and the small fighter force is outdated. However, the German Reich does start with 1936 designs for all aircraft except carrier variants and heavy fighters, meaning that modern aircraft production can begin right away and research efforts can be diverted elsewhere.
Historically, Germany focused on flexible medium bombers such as the He 111 that could provide tactical support, and also pioneered close-in air support with dive bombers such as the Ju 87 operating in concert with ground troops on the offensive. Germany's default air doctrine and unique advisors allow for the execution of very effective ground support operations.
The Luftwaffe was rapidly built into a modern air force in the late 1930s, playing a key role in German offensives in Poland, the Benelux and France. After losing to the RAF in the Battle of Britain, the Luftwaffe would go on to play a vital role in early German victories on the Eastern Front, although the lack of strategic bombers to destroy Russian industry beyond the Urals ultimately contributed to the failure of Operation Barbarossa. German aerial innovation continued throughout the war, even after the tide had turned against the Axis, leading to the development of both the first operational jet fighter, the Me 262, and the V-2 rocket, the first long-range guided ballistic missile.