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"To Twilight it's numbers in the paper, to Cadance it's the letters from her husband, to Luna it's guns and tanks. But to me, it's my little ponies"
Princess Celestia, Equestria At War

Equestria at War is a Game Mod for Paradox Interactive's Grand Strategy Game Hearts of Iron IV and a Fan Game of My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic that blends the detailed World War II and political simulation of Hearts of Iron IV with a modified, grimmer version of the My Little Pony setting and storyline.

Released in July 2017, Equestria at War has grown to be one of the most comprehensive mods for HOI4. With a custom-made map, 60+ countries with 30+ unique focus trees, racial tech trees and units, a huge variety of complex interweaving events, and more custom icons and portraits than the entire base game, it shouldn't exist, but it somehow does.

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It can be downloaded on the Steam Workshop and has a detailed wiki


It is 7 years since Princess Luna was saved and the Elements of Harmony restored by Princess Twilight and her friends. The world is changing. The peaceful isolation of the village and farm under a distant monarch is giving way to a new world, with radical ideas, terrifying weapons, centralised nation states and industrialised cities.

Already Equestria has suffered invasions, coup attempts, a rogue demigod, and even near annihilation at the hands of stolen time travel magic. A long awaited commission has released a scathing report condemning the Canterlot administration of gross unpreparedness for military, magical and internal threats.

Everywhere Equestria finds new challenges. To the west, Queen Chrysalis has abandoned her attempts at infiltration and instead mobilised the Changeling Hives for industry and war, planning her revenge on Equestria. To the north, the Crystal Empire, returned after centuries in limbo, considers its future in this strange world even as the threat of Sombra's return remains ever present. Communists spread radical ideas in Stalliongrad to the east, and the griffons of the north are thrown into chaos by the assassination of their governor.

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Across the sea, things are even worse. The Griffonian Empire has collapsed after centuries of stability, and millions lie dead as lords, kings and revolutionaries rush to fight over the spoils. The vulnerable ponies of the colony of New Mareland find Equestria more distant than ever. In the cursed north, the Necromancers of the Dread League stir to battle the Holy Knights of the Arcturian Order. And in the far east the ponies of the disparate nations of the River Coalition face this dangerous world with no alicorns, no harmony, no advanced technology, wielding only the grim determination of those who fight to protect their home and lives.

In this modern world of danger and impending war, the Magic of Friendship can seem very distant indeed...


Equestria at War contains examples of:

  • Action Politician: As a military game, many potential country leaders are also Field Marshals or Generals. This is particularly common with the Fascist paths.
  • Adaptational Personality Change:
    • Blueblood is a powerful, skilled general who does what other ponies hesitate to do.
    • Celestia may be played as a more ruthless ruler, especially as the war overwhelms her ability to protect her ponies. Should she fall far enough, she will transform into Daybreaker.
  • A.K.A.-47: Many of the game's infantry weapons are based on their real life counterpart with their names changed somewhat, some to compensate the year number difference in the game, but some for other purpose (MS 36, Garcano, etc). Oddly averted with Changelings, who uses German weapons with names unchanged.
  • All Elections Are Serious Business:
    • Usually played straight – national elections are already serious in real life, but in game elections go beyond this, consistently leading to dramatic differences in ideology, war, policy, and even the very culture of the nation itself.
    • Ironically Averted in the formation of an Equestrian Republic or the first election of the Griffonian Republic. Both are the end result of a long, bloody transformation to democracy, and the choice of candidate barely matters at all except for stat purposes.
  • The Alliance: As this is HOI4...
    • The Entente: The alliance created by Aquileia to protect against the Griffonian Empire, which usually includes The Griffonian Republic and Skyfall Trade Federation
    • United Ponies Front: formed by Equestria to defend against the Changelings, bringing together horses, commie horses, sparkling horses and Australian horses.
    • The River Coalition: An alliance of nations located in Eastern Griffonia, created over a hundred years ago to protect against invasions by griffon armies.
  • Adapted Out:
    • The reformed, multicoloured changelings are gone. Although some Changelings discover that genuine friendship and harmony feeds their hunger, this does not come with any transformation and the changelings remain their dark selves.
    • Discord is present, but really can't be bothered to help.
    • The Tree of Harmony and Pillars of Equestria are not depicted – these story elements appeared in the show after the mod was already well developed.
  • Anarchy Is Chaos: Anarchism can flourish in the Country of Greifwald if the appropriate focus path is taken.
  • Antagonistic Governor: Inverted with Governor Teafeather, the well liked leader of the colonies holding everything together.
  • Ascended Fridge Horror: For a world of singing candy coloured ponies, MLP is full of little dark moments. The canon includes warring Griffons that care only for money and power, armies of insects that will cocoon you and drain your love and Equestria in a state of Total War over the invasion of Sombra. The mod has taken the canon and followed it to its natural conclusion.
  • Adaptation Inspiration: Adapting to HOI4 has foregrounded the industrialising, modernising aspects of the show, which were always in the background. The result has been a dramatic tone and theme shift away from adventure to more complex stories about ideas, diplomacy and national changes.
  • A.I. Roulette: The HOI4 AI returns to its usual shenanigans. Historical AI? This is a fictional setting!
  • Artificial Stupidity: The AI often keep troops on the border almost equally, even with that of neighbours who they have good relations with instead of putting most of them on one which is next to a major threat. This even continue once the said threat already commenced their hostility. For example the Gryphonian Republic often keep most of their troops on their northern borders despite the Empire is already invading them from the south.
  • Bald of Evil: Rozenkamp, the National Bolshevik of EAW
  • Balkanize Me:
    • The Griffonian Empire at game start. Its entire southern half were lost to Aquilea and Wingbardy, along with multitudes of independent petty kingdoms and city states. Meanwhile much of its core territory is held only in name, and its vassals will secede if too upset.
    • Equestria breaks up into many states with the outbreak of civil war.
    • If the Changelings succeed in their conquest of Equestria, they have the option to partition the country, turning the south and the east into protectorate states.
  • Bee People: Played straight for the standard changelings, but with some free will and their own personal motivations for following their queen, alternative paths are possible.
  • Being Tortured Makes You Evil:
    • Eriviar of the Sunstriker Clan
    • After the ascension of Daybreaker Twilight can be "re-educated" into Grand Inquisitor Sunrise Sparkle
  • Cain and Abel: Either of the Equestrian Princesses Celestia or Luna can become the Cain, or the Abel, with multiple ways to kick off a sisterly rivalry so devastating it tears a thousand year empire in two.
  • Chummy Commies:
    • Stalliongrad and Prywhen, the starting communists, are both portrayed positively, and Stalliongrad can help rival Equestria against the changelings. It probably helps that ponies are just too nice to easily replicate many of the failures of historical communism.
    • The ponies of the Socialist Republic of Longsword, on overthrowing their griffon oppressors, show tolerance, acceptance and egalitarianism to the griffons despite centuries of oppression and even attempted genocide.
  • Church Militant: The Council of Three in the Griffonian Empire and Jurva's Olenia.
  • Cincinnatus:
    • In the more idealistic route, President-Marshal Kemerskai of the Griffonian Republic can spend years reforming the Republic and defeating the Empire, to pass away just as the first elections chart a new direction for Griffonia.
    • Equestria's rapid and centralised war reforms can be wound back after the war, and in the post war reforms, even the Magic of Friendship and decentralised administration can be restored.
  • Comeback Mechanic: Equestrian players will find they can pull in conscripts and often call other nations for help when things get bad.
  • Commie Land: Several factions, most notably Stalliongrad.
  • Commie Nazis: Reconstructed. Two nations can pursue Nationalist Communism, combining national supremacist ideology and totalitarian militarism with communist economics and "ideals".
  • Corrupt Politician:
    • Johan of Olenia seizes the throne from the rightful heir Velvet, maintaining his tenous grip on power through kickbacks, bribes and an army of corrupt cronies willing to put advancement before ethics.
  • The Coup: With so many focuses around changing governments, there are plenty of examples.
    • The Woodpecker Society in Skyfall
    • Daybreaker dissolving the diarchy in Equestria
    • Highill seizes power after the assasination of Governor Teafeather in Nova Griffonia.
    • Thorax can challenge Chrysalis for leadership of the hive.
    • Beakolini in Wingbardy seizes power via his march.
    • Andreia, a young Nimbusian general, will attempt to overthrow their nation’s direct democracy should things not go their way.
    • Merchant Captain Honoria wins the throne through the support of the nobles, who are using her merely as a tool to depose the progressive Queen White Star. However, she launches what amounts to a coup, executing powerful members of the nobility before they can depose her.
    • Lake City begins with a coup attempt against the government, as supporters of an heir to an ancient line of Emperors attempt to reinstitute the monarchy. However, recruiting Westerly Leeward and his paramilitary to fight off this coup can instead allow Westerly to launch a coup of his own!
  • Creator Cameo:
    • Cyrus is in the Lunar Empire
    • Psody is in the Changeling Lands
    • Scroup is an Equestrian fighter ace
    • Sponsors of the game’s patreon get portraits commissioned that are then used as characters in game. Naturally many of the volunteer dev team are such sponsors, and various members of the dev team are scattered through the game.
  • Crutch Character: Some countries give you high level generals and field marshals at the start of the game, but will soon enough get removed, which makes some focuses which give you generals and marshals to be Suspicious Video Game Generosity because chances are you are going to need them despite apparently you don't.
    • Albert Berthelot is a level 6 Marshal in Aquilea, but he dies shortly before you can even make use of him.
    • Also from Aquilea, Léonard Rodier will stick with you even if you are going Harmonic path. However, he will leave you later once you have pacified the royalists unless you are going the Fascist path that is.
    • President-Marshal Kemerskai will probably see you through almost the whole Griffonian Republic storyline until right at the end when he passes away. Chances are you already have some generals powerful enough to replace him.
  • The Cuckoolander Was Right: In the Arcturian Order, events reveal that the former Headmaster of the Order was concerned about some other dark force manipulating many events throughout history — and as the renewed investigation into his assassination draws to a close, he's revealed to have been right, at least in regards to the Dread League, for with the Order on the trail of the Windigos, they reveal themselves, take control of the Dread Peninsula and launch a second war.
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: Changelings vs Olenia a battle so one sided, that the non-historical option deliberately holds back the Changelings to give players a chance to play around with the rich Olenian content that would be otherwise wasted.
  • Cut-and-Paste Environments: Despite an incredible number of portraits, icons, and art, the Griffons, being a rather minor part of the MLP canon, don't have much environmental art, and it tends to show in many of the event pictures.
  • Darker and Edgier: Does it even need to be said?
  • Dark Horse Victory:
    • Very literal, when Dark Wing, a rather unassuming candidate during the massive ideological battle between Vasily and Altidiya, can beat both candidates. Alternatively, if Altidiya wins, she will retire shortly after, effectively electing Dark Wing.
    • Also very literal, when Equestria is in the middle of a referendum on batpony rights, and Nightmare Moon returns, throwing both sides into chaos and starting a civil war, going on to possibly win despite few wishing her victory.
    • Blackrock's Bandits can enter the Prywhen Civil War by declaring war on both sides, and with all the mercenaries they can hire, emerge victorious by conquering both the monarchists and the communists.
    • The Reformisten, one of three factions in Longswordian civil war. Despite starting with the most populous and industrial state under the control, the Black Cloaks are usually the first faction to fold.
    • The monarchists of Lake City revere the heir of a barely remembered ancient emperor. Meanwhile Lake City faces an election riddled with military interference, prepared to assassinate candidates who don’t do their bidding. The distracted nation is taken completely by surprise when the monarchists launch a coup attempt.
  • Decadent Court: The nobles of Griffonian Empire are generally hated because their unbridled ambition and bickering among each other were one of the main reasons the once great empire is now a shadow of its former self.
  • Dirty Communists: While most Communists in the game are Chummy Commies, Victor Allard from Aquilea is one notable exception.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The dark god Maar.
  • Emergency Authority:
    • In the more pragmatic route, President-Marshal Kemerskai of the Griffonian Republic will indefinitely postpone the democratic reforms, a bold choice for a nation defined entirely by it’s Republican opposition to the Griffonian Empire.
    • Equestria can be permanently transformed by its emergency war reforms, abolishing the Magic of Friendship, and even leading to a Tyrant Takes the Helm if Celestia is allowed to lose herself.
    • The government of the River Republic can invoke emergency powers in order to prevent socialists from democratically winning the elections and becoming the ruling party. These powers can rapidly become permanent.
  • Everything's Better with Princesses: Four princesses, commanding some of the most powerful militaries on the planet.
  • Evil vs. Evil:
    • It is entirely possible for both Luna and Celestia to turn to the path of evil. This changes the Equestrian civil war into a clash of the tyrants between Daybreaker and Nightmare Moon.
    • With so many potentially evil nations and so much war, evil vs evil is a very common occurrence.
  • Expy:
    • Queen Velvet, Queen of the Deer, is lovingly borrowed / shamelessly stolen of her character in Them's Fightin' Herds
    • The Kingfisher, the charismatic politician of New Mareland, bears a suspicious similarity to a certain Huey Long, who was a real person, but has attained such status as an alt history meme that it is essentially an expy of a fictional character.
    • The city of Skyfall and Alaric Dawnbreaker, ruler of Rumare are originally from Dusk Quill's A Soldier's Memoirs
    • Idol Hooves, fortification engineer for the Crystal Empire, is taken from The Changeling of the Guard
    • Dierdre Skye, a Mayoral candidate for Lake City, is a nod to the character of the same name from Sid Meier’s Alpha Centuari
  • Face–Heel Turn: Three major examples, all of them permanent if they happen (Heel Face Revolving Doors are not allowed, mostly to not over-complicate events and focus trees):
    • If Princess Celestia lets the burdens of war take too high a toll on her sanity, she could transform into Daybreaker and turn Equestria into a totalitarian, warlike country.
    • If Princess Luna is let to deal with the reforms to incorporate the thestrals/batponies into Equestrian society, Nightmare Moon will attempt to take over.
    • If Twilight Sparkle fails to escape Equestria during the rise of Daybreaker, she will be brainwashed and turned into Daybreakers top enforcer.
  • Fantastic Racism: Griffons and ponies. Enemies for life.
  • Fantasy Conflict Counterpart: Changelings vs Equestria and Germany vs the Allies, with the changelings being obviously German themed revanchist militarists, who surprise the sleepy allies (despite having swallowed up nations previously)
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: As a crossover between WW2 and ponies, many of the counterparts are very deliberate, borrowing language, names, industrial firms, famous politicians, ministers, scientists and generals from real life in this era.
    • Equestria: United States
    • Changelings: Germany
    • Olenian deer: Scandanavia (espeically Finnish and Norse influences)
    • Feathisia: Netherlands
    • Griffonian Empire: Holy Roman Empire
    • New Mareland: Australia
    • Stalliongrad: USSR / Russia
    • Aquileia: France
    • Wingbardy: Italy
    • River Republic: Croatia
      • The River Socialist Union they can form in turn is akin to Socialist Yugoslavia
    • Lake City: Japan and Weimar Germany
    • Nimbusia: Ancient Athens and Ancient Sparta.
    • Ponaidhean: Scotland and Ireland
    • Gryphian Host: Ukraine (specifically, the old Cossacks)
    • Gryphonian Republic: A mix of Austria, Spain, and Nationalist China
  • The Federation: As the name implies, the River Federation is this if formed — although its membership can be a bit nasty and depending on who takes the lead even a harmonic Federation can be iffy on pony rights.
  • Fictional Political Party: With at least four parties per country, and over 60 countries.
  • The Generalissimo: Featuring both far-left variants such as Caramel Haze in The River Republic and far-right variants that dominate Lake City. Even features an "Admiralissimo" in the form of the Vanhoover Commune's Dust Hoover.
  • Ignored Epiphany: At the very last moment before Celestia becomes Daybreaker, you have a final chance to dial back the extremism some notches. However, if an invisible Karma Meter is low enough, you won't even be given that privilege, and Celestia will turn into Daybreaker no matter your choice.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: The Cannibals of the Frontier are rather fond of Long Pork.
    • They're all griffons though, so it’s basically just eating chicken....
  • Game Within a Game: As the Crystal Empire, attempting to bring back Sombra will start a small choose your adventure as you play a regular citizen of the Crystal Empire.
    • A similar choose your own adventure game is present in Longsword if the socialist path is picked. Your goal during it is to lead a group of partisans into Hellquil in order to contact allies there.
  • Gimmick Level: The Dread League relies on raising the dead, giving it a near endless stream of bodies and absurd numbers. But its tech is incredibly poor.
  • Gondor Calls for Aid:
    • Stalliongrad can come to the aid of Equestria, either via Equestria requesting help via a focus, or when losing badly. This can especially be a surprise to an unprepared Lunar Empire player
    • Should Equestria be defeated by the Changelings (all but spelling doom to anyone but the most powerful nations of Griffonia), New Mareland can harbour the Equestrian government, and call for aid not only from the Hippogriffs, but all pony and Harmonic factions into the game, forming The Alliance.
    • Harmonic Olenia can call Equestria to their defence, which early enough in the game is usually a Awakening the Sleeping Giant moment.
  • Good Republic, Evil Empire: Griffonian Republic vs Griffonian Empire
  • Government in Exile: If Equestria falls it can flee to New Mareland.
  • Hammer and Sickle: Played with. Say hello to the Hammer and Horseshoe
  • Happiness Is Mandatory: No one could make happiness more terrifying than ponies, and the Equalists, former disciples of Starlight Glimmer, deliver
  • Hard-Coded Hostility: Dread League auto declares on any neighbouring country once the crusade starts
  • Heel–Face Turn: There are multiple cases of evil characters becoming good. If they happen, all of them stick. No Heel Face Revolving Doors. This is mostly for the sake of not making event chains and focus trees excessively complicated.
    • You can try to coax Rosa Maledicta to do one if you play as the Arcturian Order and manage to defeat the Dread League. If you make the right choices, she can make that turn for good genuine! A surprising spark of idealism in a mostly cynical universe.
    • If Thorax' rebellion goes off, his rebel faction has a focus to convince his brother Pharynx to join his side.
    • In Diamond Mountain, one possible way for Princess Molly's Harmonists to take over and disband the slave system is for her father, the fascist King Rover Diamondshield to decide to hand over power to Molly and let her do her reforms.
  • Heel–Faith Turn: Eriviar Sunstriker.
  • Hegemonic Empire: Griffonian Empire.
  • Hero Unit: Averted. In the world of HOI4 you'll need more than a few alicorns to win.
    • There is one exception to this, involving a lot of burning.
  • Home Field Advantage: Olenia, which faces an almost unwinnable fight, gains focuses to build mass forts, has a border with poor infrastructure, has racial tech specialised in fighting in cold and mountains, and is generally designed to make Changeling life as miserable as possible on the defense.
  • King on His Deathbed: Emperor Grover V, whose death throws the Griffonian Empire into chaos.
  • La Résistance: Many nations have this at game start, and others like Equestria can have it if Chrysalis wins or Daybreaker/Nightmare Moon come to power.
  • Luck-Based Mission:
    • A lot of nations surrounding Equestria depends heavily on Equestria being unstable to succeed. Fascist Buffalo state for example, relies entirely on Equestria being in a war with the Changelings or being in a civil war to have any chance in expanding.
  • Lunacy: With a character named Luna, how could it not be present. Nightmare Moon's Lunar Empire calls upon the power of the night and the oppressed batponies, her forces having general bonuses to night combat. Luna also provides similar powers when serving as a Field Marshal.
  • The Magocracy:
    • The Barrad Magocracy, a nation of dark spellcasters who fled Wittenland to continue their magics unhindered.
    • The Kingdom of Wittenland: a nation of unicorns, a challenger may usurp the monarch via magical duel, if they have the support of enough nobles. In practice the duel is often a formality, and many Wittenland monarchs have simply stepped down and handed over the throne upon seeing the support their challenger had gathered.
  • Medieval European Fantasy: Griffonian Empire is heavily inspired by the Holy Roman Empire, and many areas in Griffonia are still stuck in this era.
  • Multiple Government Polity: The River Federation. The River Coalition starts out as The Alliance, but on the path to becoming the River Federation moves in the direction of this trope.
  • The Necrocracy: The Dread League is a half-and-half example even before Rosa Maledicta turns into a lich or vampire queen. The league is governed by a cabal of necromancers (most of them liches) and a coven of vampire lords. The mooks are hordes of ghouls, zombies, skeletons and vampire thralls.
  • Neutrality Backlash: if you don’t help Equestria as Stalliongrad when they’re under attack by changelings, you might end up regretting it.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed:
    • Gladmane, the populist politician promising to make New Mareland great again.
  • No Fair Cheating: Trying to get rid of all your country's stuff and delete all their templates just before a civil war? Think again.
  • No Historical Figures Were Harmed: Many. Especially many of the Fantasy Counterpart Culture nations are full of ministers, leaders, generals and scientists inspired by their real life Equivalent
    • Wingbardy (Italy): Beakolini (Mussolini)
    • Changelings (German): Trimmel (Rommel)
    • Feathisia (Netherlands)
    • Lake City (Japan): Grand Prince Heavenly Snow (Emperor Hirohito)
    • Baltimare Commune (Soviet Union)
      • Their leader is based on Nikita Khrushchev. You can tell by his strangely realistic portrait.
      • Secret police chief Larry Barry is based off Soviet secret police chief Lavrentiy Beria.
    • Lake City's Westerly Leeward is a fascist fanatic in a failing democracy dominated by the military. His Beard of Evil and mane leave no doubt who it is.
    • Abba Povner is clearly based on a certain Jewish partisan.
    • President-Marshal Kemerskai is a Composite Character of Sun Yat-Sen and Chiang Kai-Shek.
  • No Mere Windmill:
    • Deconstructed: The Knights of the Arcturian Order continue their ancient vigil against the cunning necromancers of the Dread League, all but forgotten by the world, underresourced and alone. Their grim predictions come true, as the Dread League unleashes a tide of zombies across the world, likely overwhelming the Order. They decend upon the helpless nations of Griffonia, only to find Reality Ensues as they wiped out with ease by modern militaries equipped with machine guns, artillery and air support.
    • Double Subverted: The Knights of the Arcturian Order Discover an even greater threat behind the Dread League, responsible for much of the war and suffering on the continent. This is then promptly triple subverted as they fall just as easily as the Dread League
  • Normal Fish in a Tiny Pond:
    • In comparison to other countries in the continent, the Griffon Liberation Army/Prywhen is a poor and backward state, however in comparison to their even poorer neighbours, they're practically a military and economic powerhouse that can easily steamroll their neighbours early game. Without proper buildup, they easily fell apart when faced with the actual heavy hitters of the continent: Wingbardy and Griffonian Empire. Played well, they just keep rolling.
  • Off with His Head!: Aquileian Revolution.
  • Omnicidal Maniac: Rosa Maledicta, Leader of the Dread League, plans to unite the council of necromancers on a mission to exterminate all life and make the undead rule the entire world, after which they also will be extinguished.
  • The Order: Griffonian Knightly Orders.
    • The Arcturian Order, founded to keep the undead up the North of Griffonia under control.
    • County of Longsword and Knightly Order of Hellquill, both founded as crusader states against the Riverponies.
  • Politically Active Princess:
    • Princess Celestia, naturally
    • Princess Luna not only becomes politically active, but accidentally finds herself declaring a democratic referendum, the campaign for which she must lead
  • Police State: Numerous nations, especially on the fascist path, have this.
    • Even before Celestia turns into Daybreaker, Equestria can be under martial law, or even have all-out militarized law, with total control of the press by the government and no freedom of speech.
  • Power of the Sun: Celestia's evil form, Daybreaker, creates the Solar Empire, who is a terrifying, burning field marshal, and her very existence dramatically boosts heat attrition for other nations.
  • Plot Tumour: The Griffons, a minor side race in the show, now have a whole continent which has consumed more work, events and code than the ponies.
  • Press X to Die: A lot of political choices will get you annexed or puppeted.
  • Proud Warrior Race: Griffons and their gallant knights best embody this.
  • Red and Black and Evil All Over: Vampire Rosa of the Dread League.
  • Reign of Terror: Inverted in Aquileia. The counter-revolutionaries had a Reign of Terror and can have a second one during the game.
  • Religion of Evil: Followers of the dark god Maar, whose worship is banned.
  • Right-Wing Militia Fanatic: As a World War II era setting, many fascist nations have right wing paramilitaries.
    • Aquileia: The fascist path can lead to paramilitary attacks on minorities clearly inspired by the German Night of Broken Glass.
    • Feathisia: Bronze Sentinels
    • Reformisten in the County of Longsword.
  • The Remnant:
    • The Griffonian Republic is a remnant of a failed republican revolution in the Griffonian Empire.
    • If they are beaten during the civil war, the Lunar Empire will continue fighting in the south as the Disciples of Nightmare Moon.
    • If Equestria is beaten then they will went into exile at (loyal) New Mareland.
  • The Republic
    • Griffonian Republic
    • A possible choice for Equestria should it decide to abolish the monarchy.
  • Repressive, but Efficient: Several fascist paths, especially Wingbardy, which, as fantasy Italy, makes the trains run on time.
  • Secret Circle of Secrets:
    • Cult of Sombra, which seek to return Sombra to the Crystal Throne.
    • The Nightmare Cult, who seek to bring back Nightmare Moon.
    • The Masons of Brodfeld.
    • The Woodpecker Society of Skyfall is a shadowy cabal of rich griffons that wants to turn the country into a paradise for the wealthy and unscrupulous.
  • Shoutout:
    • The Griffonian Frontier and bandit leader Virgil are a reference to Someguy2000's New Vegas Bounties.
    • The Three Archons are an indirect shoutout to the Three Pashas
    • Streamer Conquering History Games is a general in Stalliongrad
    • One of the loading screen quotes is Apple Bloom saying "Buy some war bonds!"
    • One of the hireable government officials is the Nuclear Scientist, that gives a boost to researching nukes. In the case of Equestria, this role is filled by Fluttershy!
    • The Barrad Magocracy is ruled over by a group of five ammoral reasearchers, carving up the land with their often pointless experiments, and who lobotomize people to build their army. The only difference between them and the Think Tank is they haven't put their brains in jars.
    • Under General Secretary Dark Wing Stalliongrad becomes the terror that flaps in the night. And the new focus tree they get when Dark Wing turns on Equestria reveals that this Dark Wing is just as much of an egomaniac, if not more so.
    • Several names and concepts are borrowed from Warhammer 40,000, ranging from the Changeling city of Vraks to the Solar Empire going full Imperial Cult under the God Empress path. There are also shoutouts to the original Warhammer in the form of multiple Griffon Knightly Orders, who name themselves things like the Order of the Panther, the Order of the Blazing Sun, and more.
  • Shocking Defeat Legacy: Changelings are very bitter after their defeat at Canterlot
  • Shown Their Work: Several nations are very detailed mirrors of real world nations in the 1900s - Feathisia for example
  • Slap-on-the-Wrist Nuke: Downplayed. Nukes have been made significantly more powerful than vanilla.
  • Solar and Lunar: This trope, already strong in the original show, is taken further in Luna's attempt to welcome batponies to Equestria. If she succeeds, it is implied that Equestria's long stagnation has been a result of Luna's absence and inability to live up to her role, to bring change where Celestia brings constancy.
  • Sore Loser: Queen Chrysalis, and the changeling species in general, is resentful from losing against Equestria right when it was almost in their hooves. She will have no qualms about going into open war to take her revenge on Princess Celestia.
  • Sugar Apocalypse: Complete with magical nuclear bombs.
  • The Revolution Will Not Be Civilized: Many of the more fascist or extreme variants of the revolutionary paths are this.
  • The Theocracy: Multiple examples, with the most common one being Griffonian Empire ruled by the Archons
  • The Usurper: At the beginning of the game, the deer Kingdom of Olenia is ruled by Johan, bastard son of the late King Aldar II, and the true heir, Velvet, is hiding in Equestria. Things can remain that way or change in multiple different ways.
  • Tyrant Takes the Helm:
    • Daybreaker with Equestria.
    • Nightmare Moon, though she has the option of being a benevolent dictator.
    • There are several different tyrants that can take the helm of Nova Griffonia. First Highhill can take over, then can potentially get taken out by either Falcon leader Reyhard Ironclaw, or industrialist Skeiron Goldfeather.
  • Unexpectedly Realistic Gameplay: Ponies are not gung ho fighters, and you will be militarily incompetent until a panicked series of emergency government reforms is implemented to change things up.
  • Vestigial Empire: Griffonian Empire, which has lost a large amount of territory in the past, and even its heartlands are ruled by other major noble houses that might break away at the first opportunity.
  • Video Game Time: Despite HOI4 being better at this than most games, the production spike that even primitive nations can achieve over the decade is still present, and many of the nations start with crippling, civilisation collapsing maluses that can be reformed away with a year.
  • Wacky Wayside Tribe: While the most of the game's setting is modelled after the political and military atmosphere of World War 2, the Arcturian Order and Dread League feel like something out of a high fantasy setting.
  • We Have Become Complacent: Equestria is this. Its military path opens with a long awaited report damning the government for its inactivity in the face of rising threats, but even this is not enough - Equestria cannot shake off its complacency until war is nearly upon them, bringing in emergency reforms
  • Weird Crossover: Its My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic meets World War II. The weirdest thing is how well it works.
  • Wild West / Deep South: The Equestrian region of Appleloosa, similar to the show. If the Equestrian civil war goes on long enough, they would secede as an independent "Southern Confederacy".
  • Wutai: Averted. The Developers have ruled out a Japanese nation, despite a large amount of other nations inspired by South East Asia.
    • Japan was actually snuck in as Lake City – it has an emperor inspired by Hirihito.
  • You Cannot Kill An Idea: Zigzagged. Despite the destruction of the Aquileian Republic the republican dream still burns in its citizens. However, it is possible for the Kingdom to eventually stamp out this belief, with one of the focuses along this route literally being called "To Kill an Idea"
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