I have been testing various starting settings to see how it affects the politics/treaties/wars etc.
My current setting, World Volatility at High, no Merchant Marine, 2017 Trump Rising start.
I decided I would play the USA as Trump, a business man. At game start many old time European allies dislike me. If memory serves Poland was the only country that had a favorable opinion of us in Europe. Japan, S. Korea, Philippines and Taiwan all liked us.
I keep all units reserved and traded with any Democracy/benevolent Monarchy which asked to trade. Our goal was paying off $7,000,000m in debt we had. We maxed Infrastructure, Research and Military Pay/Training. We moved all others to recommended, with the exception of welfare, we did not touch it.
I was paying more attention to the various trade offers, type of government and what effect, numerous trades had, if any, on diplo stances.
Germany DOW'd Denmark - We condemned
Russia DOW'd Finland - We condemned
China DOW'd S. Korea - We condemned
I was mildly concerned about S. Korea, but since N. Korea was not involved and they were not allied with China I surmised it would be a Naval war to start.
In due time Russia DOW'd S. Korea.
It seemed what little friends we had in the world were getting hammered, Trump asked Japan, Taiwan and the Philippines for an alliance. They all agreed. Keep in mind an alliance is not an agreement to defend each other, that is a separate agreement. I did not ask S. Korea as they were actively involved in a war and were still so far unscathed, land wise.
Taiwan was trading with my every few days, we had a healthy trade status. We felt they were a good trading partner and historically, the real leaders of China. (keep in mind this is in game "role play", and Taiwan was founded after the communist overthrew the legitimate government of China and forced Chiang Kai-shek to flee to Taiwan island, formally known as Formosa.)
Denmark falls rather quickly, Finland soon after. Russia now takes Sweden, and the Baltic's, Germany DOW's Poland and defeats them. Now Russia and Germany have a border, they declare war on each other. France DOW's Spain, which it eliminates quickly. Germany is pushing into Russia, who I assume has forces in the former Sweden and Finland, as well now Republic of Georgia as they DOW it and take them out.
Next, Russia DOW's Turkey, I condemn of course, but Turkey is cold towards us. With Germany pushing into Russia and the majority of their forces on the eastern front, France, encouraged by its new Spanish holdings DOW's Germany. They pour into the soft backside of German forces and force a two front war.
With German troops wheeling to face France, Russia pushes into the former Poland and takes it from Germany. They next conquer Czech Republic. France is tearing into Germany proper and captures all territory up to the former Denmark in the north and Berlin in the east. Switzerland, seeing an opportunity, DOW's Germany and pushes up to just south of Freiburg in the west and Leipzig in the east, holding essentially a continuous line.
China DOW's Taiwan. This does not overly concern me as I figure we can send some air units and some subs. It is an island after all. We deploy 56 Subs, and send them to a rally point just off the eastern coast of Taiwan. I continue handling the numerous trade deals which flock in from around the world. The whole time trying to notice any effects of my condemning wars left and right.
I hear land combat, check Taiwan. China has landed a couple of land units. I am surprised, but it is a normal ai landing with 2 or 3 units. However, there are about 30 Chinese naval vessels supporting the landing and the Chinese Air Force is helping. Despite all this, I still feel no sense of urgency. The 56 subs are still en route. We deploy the 1 Gerald R. Ford Carrier we have, load 5 squadrons of F-35C CV Lightning IIs, deploy another 7 subs and 14 DDG-51 Arleigh Burke as escorts. On a whim, we rally 18 M2A4 Bradley's, load them in an Algol and rendezvous with the CV task force off San Francisco.
At this time, our 56 subs have all arrived east of Taiwan, we order them to deploy into the eastern shores of the island. As I am doing that I look at Taiwan again, it is full of Chinese land forces. they have landed what appears to be around 50 land units, with arty, tanks, AA and supply trucks. I am stunned. We now have a great sense of urgency, Taiwan might fall! Immediately we ask for a Mutual Defense treaty, they accept. I order the subs in to position, north east and south west of the island to steam the Chinese shipping.
At the same time, the Ford Battle group, with the Algol, is ordered to Taiwan. I hear sound of naval combat, look over back at Taiwan and my subs are taking a beating. As soon as they were detected, Chines naval forces swarmed the area. I had to recall the subs back to the east side of the island. We lost 17 subs. China was landing more units on Taiwan, now that I was paying attention, Taiwan was in serious jeopardy. I had no choice but to send in the subs again, all in one group this time. I was certain they would clear out the Chinese ships. 41 subs should wreak havoc. I lost every last sub.
As I am contemplating this, I deploy more subs, and baby sit the Ford battle group which is almost to Taiwan. We call up 7 squadrons of F-16 C interceptors, they have the range to reach Taiwan, by way of Hawaii, Guam and the Philippines. We also order 2 squadrons of B-2s to Naha, Okinawa.
All right, Taiwan is reeling, in dire straights, but we have forces on hand which should be able to help. 1 CV battle group including 14 DDG-51s, 14 more subs, 5 F-35C CV Lightning IIs, 7 squadrons of F-15C and 2 squadrons of B-2s. Let the dance begin...
To make a long story short, I am now out 5 squadrons of F-15cs, 5 squadrons of F-35 CVs, 15 DDG-51s, 14 more sub flotilla's, and Algol with all Bradleys lost and one sunk Gerald R. Ford carrier. The 2 B-2s limped back to Hawaii to repair.
Taiwan... no longer exits.