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Hopes for a China book 
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Corporal

Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2012 5:49 am
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Now that Japan is finally in the picture, I can start hoping BF does a serious China book. While China itself only has a small FoW community (I think I've met most of them by now), tabletop gaming is growing and growing over here. A good book for the War of Resistence would surely help.

And let's face it: not a lot of people will collect Japan just so they can lose Khalkin Gol over and over again.

So here are some things I hope to see in the China book. What sorts of things are you all hoping for?

Forces:
Guomindang* (Nationalist) Army. The bulk of China's fighting forces, one way or another. Want to see a CC Infantry list, a CT German-trained Infantry list, and a tank list (Pz I and T-26, mostly).
Should be able to take Warlord allies, esp. the Ma Clique. Should also have access to American air support (my grandfather's unit!).
Some level of "vengeance" morale special rules may be appropriate, as the Rape of Nanjing (the national capital at the time) was surely never far from their minds.

*Abbreviated KMT using old-style romanization.

People's Liberation Army. Small and terribly weakened, the PLA remained committed to fighting the Japanese before all other enemies. This was a stark contrast to Chiang Kai-Shek's hopes of eradicating the Communists while holding off the Japanese at the same time. Though ill-equipped, the Communists fought hard against the Japanese at every opportunity, and cultivated the support of the peasants everywhere they went.
Ought to have an FC/FT Infantry company with support using Soviet equipment.
One note: though the PLA in many ways invented the guerilla tactics depicted by Resistence Teams in the Vietnam rules, these rules cannot just be pasted onto China. While the US and allied forces in Vietnam made a significant effort to avoid killing civilians, the Japanese did not hesitate to murder people for any or no reason. Alternate guerilla rules would make more sense. The Soviet infiltration rules would probably be a good fit as well.

Warlord forces
Most of the Warlords were eradicated in the Northern Expedition, but the Ma Clique of the Muslim Northwest remained as notable Nationalist allies and anti-Japanese fighters. Ma Clique probably CT, as they fought constantly for decades. Some armored-car support, and perhaps CV White Russian mercenaries. Cavalry still likely.

Manchukuo Puppet State
The Manchukuo forces would be infantry able to take Japanese support, including a little armor. There are lots of good reason to class the puppet forces among the worst in all of FoW: RC, and their Japanese support counts as allies: suspect a Japanese private would sooner have spit on a Chinese general than obey him. Also have wide access to cavalry, just for those masochists who want to run an army of RC Cavalry. Should NOT get quality-of-quantity: mass surrender and desertion was an ever-present issue.

Note that Manchukuo would entirely use figures for either Warlord or Japanese armies, somewhat mitigating the financial risk of making such a punishingly awful army list.

Other thoughts? Any other interest in China at all?


Tue Oct 15, 2013 1:52 am
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I would love to see China, if just for the history. That said, I don't know if it would make for a fun game with the FoW rules. CoC might be more appropriate.

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Tue Oct 15, 2013 3:21 am
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The problem with the Chinese is really establishing their identity for this game and infantry blobs don't really get it done in this game unless they have good rule support.


Tue Oct 15, 2013 4:45 am
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Well China was a divided nation and far from peaceful, they however put diffrences aside to fight agains't a common foe (Japan).

So expect to see weird battalion lists, poor ratings and huge collection of guns, tanks and maybe some air support.

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Tue Oct 15, 2013 7:57 am
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Be good to see the Chinese get some wargaming love.

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Tue Oct 15, 2013 8:55 am
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I think it would be cool, but I think it would probably all behind the island campaigns in terms of pure sales/demand.

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Tue Oct 15, 2013 2:51 pm
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I am in favor of it, although I could see the special rules getting even wackier than the Japanese.


Tue Oct 15, 2013 6:47 pm
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Once the Pacific moves past EW, I'm really interested in the "Y-Force" - Chinese divisions in Burma trained & equipped by the US.

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Thu Oct 17, 2013 1:38 pm
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I admit I don't know much about China prior to WWII. I always thought it was one (mostly) stable country until the Japanese attacked. Once that happened, the various fragments occured and factions such as the Commies appeared. Is that not the case? Were they already around when the Japanese invaded?

Don't forget the British and Gurkas in SE Asia in Early War. Or is that Mid?


Thu Oct 17, 2013 4:41 pm
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heychadwick wrote:
I admit I don't know much about China prior to WWII. I always thought it was one (mostly) stable country until the Japanese attacked. Once that happened, the various fragments occured and factions such as the Commies appeared. Is that not the case? Were they already around when the Japanese invaded?

Don't forget the British and Gurkas in SE Asia in Early War. Or is that Mid?


From 1916 on, China had what is known as the "Warlord Era" - think Somalia pre-Al-Shabab. Very fragmented and unstable, with high levels of localized violence and brigandry. Lots of little states warring with each other with an overall lack of general security. The communist movement developed mainly as a response to this instability.

In terms of SE Asia, the battles in Malaya would qualify for EW, but most of the action would be Mid and Late War. Burma would probably be a lot of fun, provided you didn't mix it with the other theaters. You'd see a lot of infantry companies with a few light tanks to back them up. The Japanese and Allied tanks would be pretty equivalent in strength: Stuarts vs. Ha-Gos.

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Thu Oct 17, 2013 6:04 pm
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I'm down for more Pacific in general, though the second Sino-Japanese war would be great. Would be nice to see the environment where the Japanese were the top dogs.

Plus I could dig some German trained and equipped Chinese.

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Thu Oct 17, 2013 8:32 pm
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Meh. A Chinese list does nothing for me.

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Fri Oct 18, 2013 1:05 am
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Why wait just do your own.


Sun Oct 20, 2013 7:27 am
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I love books with weird side theater army lists, so I would be all over it. I doubt I collect an army from it, but I'd love to read it.


Mon Oct 21, 2013 1:01 am
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Stable???????????

Elaborating on the chaos in China before the war:
(From memory, dates may be sligthly off)

c. 1900: Weakened by the Opium Wars, the Taiping Rebellion (among the bloodiest in world history), the Boxer Rebellion, the Japanese invasion and subsequent loss of Dalian and Taiwan, and others too numerous to count, the Qing Dynasty (ethnic-Manchu monarchs ruling China) finally and grudgingly tries to modernize. Most efforts are limited and useless, but the Self-Strengthening Movement does begin to create a modernized military, led by a trained officer corps, as opposed to the local and ethnic Manchu Banner Forces of the previous 3 centuries.

1911: Han (what most people think of as ethnic-"Chinese") nationalists led by Sun Yatsen overthrow the Qing Dynasty, expanding from their rebel statelet in the south. The Republic of China is created, with Sun as president. Chiang Kai-Shek is a powerful figure already: both as the republic's most important general and key figure in the Shanghai criminal underworld.

1912: The former Prime Minister of the empire, Yuan Shikai, challenges Sun for control of the government. Yuan has the backing of the largest and most modern forces created in the Self Strengthening Movement. Rather than risk renewed civil war, Sun resigns and Yuan becomes the president.

1915 (16?): Yuan confirms the worst-kept secret in China: that he wants to be Emperor, not president. He openly styles himself Emperor, angering almost all the generals in the various local factions of the army. The units of the modern army follow modern command structures, and are more loyal to their generals than to any particular government. Most of the regional warlords openly reject Yuan, who quickly backtracks.

1916: Yuan was a clever and powerful leader, and may yet have united the post-revolutionary country. But he died of disease in 1916. The government collapsed, and the officers of the army became warlords over their own base regions.

1915: Japan renews aggression against China, and seizes the German colony of Qingdao under pretense of WWI.

1918: Widescale protests against the Treaty of Versailles, which allowed Japan to keep Qingdao, rock the country, and lead to the "New Culture Movement", very much the predecessor to communism and both modern Chinese states.

1920s: The warlords wage bloody, disorganized campaigns against one another. The country is in absolute chaos.

1921: The Communist Party is founded in Shanghai, concerned primarily with China's fledgling urban working class. They follow the Soviet party line closely. Mao is not yet important.

1925: Chiang Kai Shek takes over Sun's Guomindang (Kuomintang = KMT) party, the closest thing to a legitimate government in the Warlord Era.

1926: KMT and Communists briefly cooperate in the Northern Expedition, defeating most warlords and unifying the country.

1927: KMT turns to open warfare against the Communists.

1931: Japan invades and conquers Manchuria. They establish a puppet state with the deposed child emperor Puyi in nominal control.

1933: The KMT's 5th attempt to trap and eliminate the Communists achieves partial success. Communist forces spend two years fleeing in the desperate, bloody Long March. They are decimated, but the survivors establish a new power base among the peasants of inland China. Mao achieves a stable position leading the party, and breaks with Soviet orthodoxy by focusing their revolutionary efforts entirely on the peasants (a more useful idea, as there WEREN'T ANY urban workers in most of China).

1937: Japan begins a full-scale invasion of China. Beginning of WWII.


Wed Oct 23, 2013 6:31 am
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What it really needs is an expanded version of AK47 '15 days to war' so that each faction has various special events and your victory conditions might even end up asymmetric, with various political, economic and military VPs to be earned. Add a campaign mechanism and you can have an awesome free-for-all!

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Wed Oct 23, 2013 7:08 pm
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Would love to see more Pacific books, including one with China vs. Japan, but personally I'm really looking forward to the USMC and US Army in the Pacific, from Early through Late War, along with the Commonwealth troops and more Japanese.

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Sun Oct 27, 2013 5:39 am
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