In this release we are introducing a new scenario called The Balkan Wars. The scenario covers the five critical conflicts that dominated the WW1 era. It begins in March of 1912 with the Italo-Turkish War over Libya where a weakened and unstable Ottoman Empire struggles against the expansionist minded Italians. Then the Balkan nations begin the first of two wars over the remnants of the Ottoman domains in Europe. These actions all lead up to the events surrounding the July Crisis. The assasination of the Austrian Archduke, followed by the outbreak of a cataclysmic conflict involving the world's great powers. And finally, war exposes a growing discontent in the Russian Empire causing a government collapse and a bloody civil war.
As with all Making History games, The First World War does not seek to maintain a restrictive historical timeline. The AI is provided incentives to follow a historical path but oftentimes game actions alter AI decisions as the scenario progresses. Most playthroughs of The Balkan Wars should see the regional wars that precede WW1 and the rise of Soviet Russia. But there will be times that an early conflict might arise or maybe a delay in the start of the Great War due to the confrontation in the Balkans.
We’ve added some code to counteract a common financial exploit of maxing out the Tax Rate slider. Previously the consequences of putting your taxes up to 100% was almost nonexistent in many nations. Now when the Tax Rate is too high, there’s an elevated chance of increased Corruption. The threshold for triggering the penalties is different based on Government Ideologies and the harshness of the penalties goes up with the rise of taxation. In general, Socialist nations tolerate higher taxes than others.
There’s a similar modifier tied to Government Support. Now the national populations will gain radicalism if Government Support becomes too low. Again, the point at which the penalties kick in are different according to Government Ideologies. Authoritarian and Democratic governments are more susceptible to low Government Support. Both of these policy penalties should encourage players to be better government managers to avoid chronic instability.
There are a few game balancing changes for this release. For one, we’ve added some build restrictions to hardware units like Artillery, Aircraft and Ships. This means some units are only available when a prerequisite Factory is present in the city where you are recruiting. For instance, if you recruit a Ship that requires a Level 3 Shipyard, you can build that unit in any city that has one. Even if you order the Ship in a Level 1 Shipyard, as long as there’s a Level 3 in the same city, the option to build will be available.
Since the major part of this update is the new scenario, we’ve put most of our focus toward preparing The Balkan Wars for release. Still there are some of the bugs and suggestions from our Early Access users addressed here. We thank everyone for pointing out the misspelling, content errors and general critiques. For a small team like ours, community feedback is a critical part of making the game better.