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Video Game / Making History

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"International trade, religious and cultural strife, military campaigns, diplomatic negotiations... here, you control it all."
Official page of Making History II

Making History is a series of Turn-Based Strategy games, set in and around the World War II period. Current instalments in the series are:

  • Making History: The Calm and the Storm (2007)
  • Making History II: The War of the World (2010)
  • Making History: The Great War (2015, WWI)
  • Making History: The Second World War (2017)

These games allow you to take control of any of the nations of the era and rule as you see fit. While the main purpose of the game is to prepare your country and fight in WWII (WWI in case of the third game), the series is heavily open to Alternate History, and as such, each game can vary wildly. While many nations will do what they historically did without your interference, timelines of games can range from very historical to Stupid Jetpack Hitler. Of course, there's nothing stopping you from continuing a game for as long as you want past the usual end.

What if Those Wacky Nazis had acquired nuclear weapons? What if the Soviets had started the war? What if Cuba became a major empire? All of these and many more can be explored by the player.

Unrelated to the 1996 novel (although their premises do overlap) and the 2017 comedy series of the same name.

This series contains examples of the following tropes:

  • After-Action Report: There are subforums for MHII and MHI/Gold, where players tell their stories in this format.
  • Airstrike Impossible: Just how does a strategic bomber hit a target in the mountains?
  • Artificial Brilliance: Every so often, the AI does something genuinely unexpected and clever.
  • Artificial Stupidity: Many players complain that even on high difficulties, the AI makes some dumb decisions.
  • Attack! Attack! Attack!: The enemy will sometimes send one-division suicide charges into your armies, which cause way more damage than they should, if it happens several times. This was eventually patched to become a less frequent occurance.
  • Civil War: If a dissenting Ideology is powerful enough, it can stage an uprising to change the country's ideology.
    • Furthermore, if a conquering country establishes a puppet state in the country it is conquering, the puppet will be the one conquering further territories in that country instead of the conqueror.
  • Cool Boat: Quite a few examples, but supercarriers are the most obvious one.
  • Cosmetically Different Sides:
    • Each country gets all the same units, with no differences in playstyle besides geography and infrastructure. No country gets any faction-specific buffs or debuffs.
    • Each of the four in-game Ideologies are completely identical gameplay-wise, with no unique buffs or debuffs. Ideology basically only exists in-game to justify a victory condition where the ideology with the highest ranking wins.
  • Death from Above: Bombers, in sufficient numbers, can be used to deadly affect.
  • Defeat Means Friendship: It's often a good idea to create a new government in a conquered country, making an ally out of your former enemy.
  • Easy Logistics: Averted in II. You have to pay close attention to supply lines or risk running out of supplies.
  • Enemy Civil War: Can easily happen, especially if you fund political opposition against said enemy nation.
  • Enemy Mine: Having a common enemy makes even nations that hate you much more likely to accept an alliance.
  • Friends with Benefits: Even if another nation isn't willing to accept an alliance, if relations are high enough they may allow you to use their ports and airfields, or move through their territory.
  • Glass Cannon: Nuclear missiles, and nukes in general. They can cripple a nation, but are a one-shot deal.
  • Government in Exile: Even if its mainland is captured, a country will continue to exist as long as it has land.
  • Invaded States of America: One of the more difficult things to achieve, but it happens sometimes.
  • La Résistance: People who are unhappy with their nation may revolt and start a civil war.
  • Les Collaborateurs: Both the player and the AI can install a puppet government in a vanquished country, changing the ideology of that country to the conqueror's own.
  • Level Editor: One of the main features of the series is the inclusion of a scenario editor.
  • Mordor: A nation becomes this when it focuses only on its military, and neglects its economy.
  • Red Shirt Army: The Militias.
  • "Risk"-Style Map: Where the entire process takes place.
  • Slap-on-the-Wrist Nuke: Getting nuked multiple times doesn't really seem to bother countries all that much.
  • Stupid Jetpack Hitler: This happens frequently and literally, if Germany survives long enough.
  • Tank Goodness: Sending thousands of Heavy Tanks across an enemy border: Priceless.
  • Why Won't You Die?: So you're at war with a country. Captured their homeland? Destroyed their military? They're out of supplies and starving to death? At the time of this writing, countries in MHII almost never surrender.
  • You Nuke 'Em: If you successfully research nuclear weapons, you can do this.