The Iberian nations of Spain and Portugal remained neutral during the Second World War, but repeated German aggression after the war (in the form of their seizure of Portuguese Africa and the creation of Atlantropa) quickly antagonized the two nations against Germany. The strongmen rulers of Iberia, Francisco Franco and Antonio de Oliveira Salazar, decided to sign a defensive pact to form the Iberian Union, which quickly evolved and eventually united the two nations into a single one.
Iberia went on to form the Triumvirate with the Italy and Turkey, who all saw Germany as a threat. However, with Germany's fall, the threat of Germany was greatly diminished, and the Triumvirate began to divide. Far worse than that however, Iberia's own divisions began to surface. The union of the twin Caudillos resulted not in unity, but disunity. Ethnic tensions intensified, political divisions worsened, and nearly every aspect of the Union's politics, military, and society became increasingly fractured by the day. It remains to see whether the Union comes out of the crisis united, or divided.
- Balkanize Me: Iberia can break up in several ways. The simplest is for Spain and Portugal to simply divorce peacefully. However, Iberia can also collapse into civil war, with multiple Spanish and Portuguese states popping up, as well as several minorities breaking free as well. If things get crazy enough, even the splinter states can break up and fight each other! The Iberian Civil War also isn't fought to the death, so it's possible for multiple Spains or Portugals to end up on the map once the war ends.
- Barrier Maiden: As the managers of the Gibraltar Dam after the German withdrawal, Iberia is responsible for the fate of millions of lives across the Mediterranean.
- Civil War: One can happen to Iberia if the player isn't careful. Depending on how badly the civil war goes, Iberia can break up so catastrophically that even the splinter states collapse into their own civil wars.
- The Federation: With much effort and a bit of luck, the dysfunctional Iberian Union can be reformed into the Iberian Congress, a relatively democratic federation that represents Spain, Portugal and minorities equally.
- Government in Exile: Once the Iberian Wars begin and the Iberian government completely loses control over mainland Iberia, they can escape to North Africa or the Iberian Admiralty on the Balearic Islands.
- Loads and Loads of Characters: The Iberian Wars have a lot of factions.
- Iberian breakaway states: Galician Republic, Asturian Workers' Battalions (or Asturian Republic), Basque Republic, and Republic of Catalunya. The Basque Republic and Catalunya can also have their own civil wars with socialists, creating the Basque Socialist Republic and the Catalan Popular Front respectively.
- (Second) Spanish Civil War: The Spanish State, Spanish Authority, and Spanish Republic. The National Redemption Front also stems from the civil war in Spain. A slightly different second Spanish civil war sees Falangist Spain and Spanish Provisional Government◊ as its two factions, the latter apparently evolving into the Kingdom of Spain◊ after it wins the civil war.
- Portuguese Civil War: Portugal, State of Portugal, Portuguese Provisional Republic, Portuguese Peoples Republic, and Government of National Salvation.
- The Balearic Islands becomes an independent Iberian Admiralty. The Gibraltar Dam also becomes the Gibraltar Protectorate (or the Gibraltar Dam Zone).
- North African breakaway states: Moroccan Governate (or the Kingdom of Morocco), West African Islamic Republic, the Rif Republic, and even Mauritania.
- Mêlée à Trois: The balkanization and civil war aspects of the Iberian Wars can stack together to make a truly ridiculous amount of factions, all trying to kill each other.
- "Rashomon"-Style: Franco and Salazar's conflicts manifests itself by conflicting descriptions in each leader's bios: Franco's bio says that Salazar approached him to create the Iberian Union, while Salazar's bio says it was Franco who reached out to create the union. Salazar's bio also attests to Franco passing a "Law of Succession" that would reinstall a monarchy and absorb Portugal into Spain after both of them died, while Franco's bio says that Salazar made up the law.
- Right Hand vs. Left Hand: While the twin Caudillos Franco and Salazar are officially equals who share power with each other, in reality both men want more influence than the other. This leads to lots of infighting, worsening the internal divisions in Iberia.
- Villain Team-Up: Franco and Salazar, dictators of Spain and Portugal respectively, joined together in the face of German aggression to form the Iberian Union, and ruled as its twin Caudillos.
- We ARE Struggling Together: The Iberian Union was formed in response to a potential German invasion, which never happened. Without an external threat to unite against, the Spanish and Portuguese, not to mention the unruly minorities, have a very hard time cooperating.
- Western Terrorists: Iberia is filled to the brim with separatist forces like the Basque ETA or the Portuguese FSLP. If the government takes one bad turn, the ethnic tensions will literally and figuratively explode, causing large amounts of terrorist attacks that further increase ethnic tensions in the country.
Spanish Civil War
The democratic faction in the Spanish Civil War.
The hardline falangist faction in the Spanish Civil War.
A Catholic extremist faction that can emerge from the Civil War in Spain. The NRF is extremely brutal and follow their own fundamentalist brand of Catholicism. Their ultimate goal is the creation of a theocratic Kingdom of God on Iberia.
- Church Militant: The NRF are a group of radical Catholics that emerge out of the Iberian War, desiring to bring about a Kingdom of God on Earth.
- Crushing the Populace: The NRF brutally cleanses their territory to fully realize their their fundamentalist Catholic Kingdom.
- Culture Police: As a part of their "sanitation" campaign, the NRF seeks to prohibit any secular music.
- Dark Is Evil: The National Redemption Front are by far the most evil of the Iberian War factions, and their flag comes with a pitch black background.
- Eviler Than Thou: The Front hates other far-right groups just as much as (if not more than) the other groups in Iberia and will purge the Carlists as soon as they achieve power.
- The Fundamentalist: The NRF is made up of the most extreme Catholics in Iberia. They enforce their extreme branch of Catholicism through brutal repression and terror. They wage war with everybody as they do not believe in nations, only God and his servants.
- Kick the Son of a Bitch: One of the first actions the NRF does is to execute the Carlists and destroy monuments to the Francoist and other reactionary regimes for their part in the Thousand Years betrayal that turned Iberia away from God's light.
- Monumental Damage: The NRF is more than eager to burn down the Iberian palaces to completely eradicate the memory of secular regimes.
- Names to Run Away from Really Fast: The name "National Redemption Front" sounds far scarier than the regional-political names of other Iberian War factions like "Spanish State" or "Free Catalunya", while putting the word "Redemption" in your name is an easy hint that you are a very radical faction.
- Pretentious Latin Motto: The phrase written on their flag, Miserere Nobis, literally means "have mercy upon us", a phrase from Agnus Dei.
- The Purge: The whole "Enforce Sanitation" tree is dedicated to the purge of the old regime servants, the remnants of secular culture and any semblances of an actual state.
Carlos Arias Navarro
- Historical Villain Upgrade: Carlos Navarro in real life was a hardline Francoist who sentenced thousands to death as a part of the Francoist White Terror. However, here he straight up becomes an insane Catholic fundamentalist, becoming a holy regent for the extremely brutal National Redemption Front.
- Go Mad from the Revelation: Once, he was a simple Francoist statseman. However, after seeing the never-ending horror of the Iberian Wars, he loses all his faith in the old order and turns into a completely different person, seeking the answers from no one but God himself.
Portuguese Civil War
The democratic faction in the Portuguese Civil War.
The socialist faction in the Portuguese Civil War.
The fascist faction in the Portuguese Civil War.
A stratocratic Portugal ruled entirely by the military, led by the hardline nationalist general Kaúlza de Arriaga.
- Armies Are Evil: The GNS is the most militaristic faction among the Portuguese breakaways during the Iberian Wars, and is very much evil.
- Deadly Gas: Unlike the rest of Iberia, the GNS is not hesitant to use chemical weapons.
- Renegade Splinter Faction: The Government of National Salvation appears during the Iberian Wars as a reaction towards the more sensible politicians of Portugal, who, in Arriaga's eye, turned their back on Portugal and allowed its 500-years empire to be extinguished.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: The GNS wants every nation that wronged Portugal to pay back in blood.
- Secret Police: One GNS focus mentions the creation of the Flechas, the special forces unit for Estado Novo's secret police PIDE in real life. Considering the fully militarized nature of the GNS, the Flechas will likely be even more brutal than in real life, possibly even becoming a fully fledged State Sec.
- Warhawk: The GNS, as a whole, consists of disgruntled radical Portuguese generals who wish militaristic vengeance on the enemies of Portugal- both those who tore away its colonial empire, and Spain, for forcing it into the Iberian Union.
Kaúlza de Arriaga
- Elite Army: Arriaga advocates for a new kind of elite army, whose members are trained to the max, equipped with the best, and fully dedicated to combat in both body and mind. He created the Commando Regiment as a test lab for his ideas.
- The Generalissimo: Arriaga is the hardline militarist leader of GNS's Portugal.
- General Ripper: Being an unrepentant and unrestrained warmonger towards the fellow Portuguese, Iberians and former colonial subjects alike, who was infamous in real life for war crimes committed by his men during the Portuguese colonial wars, far-right beliefs and fierce opposition to post-Salazar governments , Kaúlza is a very repulsive person to fight alongside with.
- Military Coup: Arriaga is displeased by the collapse of the Portuguese Colonial Empire and later the collapse of the Spanish/Iberian colonies. As such, he and his Commando Regiment marches on Lisbon and coups the Portuguese government, in order to create a new one that in his eyes can save Portugal.
- Tyrant Takes the Helm: Arriaga's hypermilitaristic stratocracy makes Salazar's corporatist state look like a pleasant liberal republic.
Spanish Breakaway States
- Western Terrorists: The Basque separatist group ETA is a very significant driving force behind the ethnic tensions in Iberia, and caused a lot of trouble for the Iberian government. They can fight in the Iberian Wars as the Basque Liberation Army and create the Basque Socialist Republic if they're victorious.
During the breakup of Iberia, Catalonia declares independence in the form of the Republic of Catalunya. The Republic has to manage its relations with the Catalan left-wing. Managed poorly, the left-wing will rise up and form the Catalan Popular Front to resist against the Republic of Catalunya, which can later evolve into the CNT-FAI-controlled Free Territory of Catalunya, or the PCI-controlled Free Catalunya.
- Civil War: Independent Catalonia can quickly get swept up in a socialist revolution if the government fails to settle the left-wingers in the region.
- Out of the Frying Pan: The Catalan Popular Front might collapse again if nobody has real control over the country. While the outcome is said to be bad, the exact outcomes are currently not revealed.
- Unfriendly Fire: It's implied that the power struggle between the CNT-FAI and PCI will occur with one faction gunning down most members of the side during the chaos of the Civil War, as the Dev Diary says "The best time to ensure one or the other faction is triumphant is during the fighting, when nobody will notice just another dead body."
- We ARE Struggling Together: Catalan Popular Front strives towards expanding its socialist revolution, but is internally divided between the CNT-FAI and the PCI. And then if the CNT-FAI beat out the PCI, the moderate CNT and the radical FAI will argue with each other (although only in political debates instead of with purges).
- Bomb-Throwing Anarchists: While the FAI aren't quite the "we're burning down all of society so we can piss on the ashes" variety of anarchists, they are highly radical in their positions. At best, this can lead to somewhat impractical moves, such as going fully anarchist in the government and economy while they're surrounded by Nazis and fascists, and at worst, purging all of the Catholic Church and former members of the old government. Of course, if the hint that the CNT being lenient to certain groups will end up with their betrayal, such as the AAS, the former secret police of the Franco regime, this may justify the FAI's more radical policies in that regard.
- Chummy Commies: The CNT-FAI is significantly more democratic than the PCI.
- Dry Crusader: Both the CNT and FAI are against drugs and alcohol, with the FAI in particular viewing both as "a result of despair induced by capitalism and fascism". Downplayed in that neither side institutes a full-on ban of substances, with the most aggressive thing the FAI does being to strong-arm producers and consumers of alcohol - a "prohibition-without-law"- while the CNT will be more laissez-faire on the issue, believing that, with the alienating influence of fascism and capitalism already removed from society, the people who were driven to drink won't need it anymore, so there's no need to waste effort in ensuring what will be inevitable.
- Illegal Religion: FAI wants to dismantle the Catholic Church in Catalunya completely. The CNT has a more realpolitik approach and instead simply restrains them to avoid alienating the religious workers.
- People's Republic of Tyranny: While they certainly aren't as bad as Carrillo's "Free" Catalunya, some decisions that the FAI can take cross into this territory, such as completely outlawing the Catholic Church or purging former members of Franco's government.
- Reasonable Authority Figure: The CNT is more moderate and tolerant the FAI, as it doesn't outright eliminate all enemies of the revolution so much as it restrains their political power, or even try turning them over to their side. Of course, in at least one case, the CNT's mercy may wind up biting them later on, specifically when it comes to the remnants of the Francoist AAS...
- Wide-Eyed Idealist: Both the CNT and FAI have this outlook, but in diametrically opposing ways. The FAI believe that a full-fledged anarchist society can be formed almost straight away, but doing so will, at best, lead to radical changes that aren't wholly practical, while at worst lead to entire groups being purged from society as "counter-revolutionary", from the Catholic church to former members of Franco's government. The CNT, whilst more moderate with structural changes, believe that most enemies of anarchism can be turned to their ideology (or at least have their influence stripped without wholesale purging them). While this method will prevent their revolution from becoming too bloody, there are hints such mercy will sometimes cause powerful political enemies left unchecked to strike back, such as Franco's AAS...
The leader of the PCI (Iberian Communist Party).
- Allohistorical Allusion: Free Catalunya led by Carrillo's PCI can develop the ideology of Autosuficiència (self-sustainability). This is an allusion to Juche of North Korean infamy.
- Dirty Commies: Compared to the CNT and the FAI, Carrillo believes in a socialist democracy of One Man, One Vote - Carrillo is that man, and whatever he says is that vote.
- Emergency Authority: The PCI can permanently rule with emergency powers by saying it's always a national emergency when capitalism and fascism still exists.
- Historical Villain Upgrade: Although Carrillo was the OTL leader of the Communist Party Of Spain, and did take controversial actions during the original Spanish Civil War (such as being highly suspected of involvement in the Paracuellos Massacres), he would later distance himself from Stalinism and the USSR, and would even help Spain transfer peacefully to a democratic system in the 1970s. Here, the very best he can do is offer some token reforms (such as elections with the PCI as the only legal party), and more often he simply makes a run-of-the-mill totalitarian regime under his absolute control, and he can go so far as to basically implement Spanish Juche.
- A Lighter Shade of Grey: Carrillo can open some limited elections, although only members of the PCI are allowed on the ballot. He may also reduce the re-education levels to "A Merciful Hand◊" (compared to "Truth Above All" or "The Conceptual Level") and instead of wholly nationalizing the industry, he may allow the worker unions to continue existing (although with heavy surveillance and strong-arming).
- Newspeak: One of Free Catalunya's radical re-education options◊ is called The Conceptual Level◊, which involves eradicating right-wing thought by altering the language itself.
- People's Republic of Tyranny: Free Catalunya isnt free; its ruling party, the PCI, consists of authoritarian socialists. Free Catalunya is authoritarian socialist at best, and Autosuficiència at worst.
The authority over the Gibraltar Dam during the Iberian Wars, headed by Portuguese admiral Fernando de Quintanilha e Mendonça Dias.
Lord Protector of the Gibraltar Dam, The Most Serene Admiral Fernando
- First-Name Basis: The admiral has a rather impressive name (Fernando de Quintanilha e Mendonça Dias), so he is referred solely by his first name.
- Try to Fit THAT on a Business Card!: Admiral Fernando's real name is Fernando de Quintanilha e Mendonça Dias, and the admiral apparently gave himself a bunch of long titles after splitting the Gibraltar Dam away from the Iberian Union.