From Hearts of Iron 3 Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

In the late 1930s, Mexico is but a shadow of the great colonial superpower it once was. The Great Depression took away Mexico's main trading partner, the USA, and just a few decades earlier the nation was home to a violent revolution. The population is split along party lines, as the communist minority calls for war while the democrats are occupied at home. They have better production and infrastructure compared to their neighbors, due to a long-standing trade with their allies to the north. Despite this lucrative oil trade and industrial modernization, many Mexicans still hold a grudge over the loss of Texas, Arizona, and the Philippines. With war looming on the horizon, Mexico must make a choice: join their long-time ally and fight for the good of mankind, or strike the forces of the free world when they least expect it, and restore New Spain to its rightful place in history.


Distribution of Leadership

Mexico has little leadership at its disposal, so deciding what to focus on early in the game is important to maximize the effect. Mexico has a large amount of officers, due to its sizeable standing army left over from the revolution. To conserve these officers, one should seek to upgrade the existing units, rather than making more. As for research, 1 project at a time can be pursued, with minimal leadership being left over for other areas.



Historically, in 1942 Mexico joined the Allies after 2 oil tankers were sunk by German submarines. Due to Mexico's proximity to the United States, and ideological similarities, this is by far the easiest route to take. However, it is not impossible to align with the Axis, or even the Comintern, by aligning to these powers early in the game. Be wary of the USA's relations with the Axis, and take measures to keep them neutral if you seek an Axis or Comintern Mexico. However, this peace can only last so long, as almost any expansion will incur Uncle Sam's wrath. An Allied Mexico will not have to deal with this, but this decision should be made early, as a strong navy will be required to contribute to the war overseas.


The only event unique to Mexico occurs in May 1942, when German submarines sink two oil tankers, causing Mexico to automatically get 0 neutrality and join the Allies.



There is not really a need to replace many of Mexico's ministers, and no additional ministers are gained over time. The only thing to do in this area is get someone else elected Presidente, as the starting head of gov't gives a -5% penalty to IC.


Political Parties

Mexico has few ministers from non-democratic factions, and all non-democratic parties have no organization or popularity, save a few Left-Wing Radicals.


Mexico begins the game with a surprisingly large amount of active spies. Despite the nation's low leadership, they have managed to plant spies in most of Central America, parts of the Caribbean, and the USA and Canada. However, to do anything effective with these spies, the player must decide their game plan early in the game. Domestic spies are not an issue if starting late-game, as Mexico automatically gets 0 neutrality in 1942, after joining the Allies. However, if one wishes to take an ahistorical route, such as invading the USA, a wise decision would be to begin in 1936, and invest all of one's intelligence disrupting production or national unity. If invading the USA, there is little need for increasing threat, as the American pre-war military buildup should raise their threat more than enough to take action.



Mexico starts off with a small surplus of crude oil. This is enough to fuel some early armor, but do not consider trading it away until upgrades are made to oil refining. Once you reach at least level 2, you should be producing enough fuel for many Caribbean and European nations to seek a trade for these resources. It is possible to have an Axis Mexico by trading with Germany and Japan early in the game. Be sure to build plenty of escorts prior to the war, as convoys to Wilhelmshaven pass right by many British territories.

Industrial Production

Mexico starts the game with a base Industrial Capacity (IC) of 19, which qualifies the country as a top Minor Power. Because it is a democracy, that number is further reduced by a full civilian economy. To raise your IC fire the anti-neutrality decision and increase production to war industry. If you decide to increase your industry by building IC do not forget that this will take a long time and severely hamper the production of war material. To get the most war material from your low IC, switch as soon as possible to war industry but stay at consumer production goods and voluntary army combined with the lowest unit experience law. It decreases your officer ratio and your manpower severely but speeds up the production of the badly needed war material and troops.



Mexico has one of the largest armies in the Americas, left over from the revolution just a few decades before. This army will be large enough to conquer most of central and South America, but any player seeking to expand into the United States will need to build quantity, while a player travelling the more historical route in the Pacific will need to build quality. Choosing one's playstyle early in the game is vital for establishing a balanced army.

Joining the Allies

The most important technology required for aiding the Allied war effort is the required techs for building Marine Infantry. In order to take the heavily fortified Japanese holdings in the Pacific, one's Marine divisions should carry mostly Marines, with an attachment of Artillery or Anti-Tank, depending on the nature of the defending force. Transport Planes are also a must, which makes allying with the United States vital, due to the leadership freed up by making production runs of these units, in addition to superior armored units for taking Manchuria or Korea. One should also make small amounts of Anti-Air units, as Mexican soldiers in the Pacific are too valuable to be lost to enemy bombers.

Fighting the United States

An ahistorical Mexican campaign should only be taken by experienced players. Joining any faction other than the Allies will immediately cause tension between Mexico and the United States. In addition, the military buildup taken by both nations due to the war will cause mutual threat to skyrocket, making the Second Mexican–American War inevitable. Despite the risks, with a proper army it is indeed possible to weather the USA's invasion, and even retake the lost provinces in Arizona, Texas, and California. Unless one starts buildup in 1936, masses of Militia and Mountain infantry are the best way to go. With some additional time, however, a mixed army could be constructed, with production runs of Light Armor and Rocket Artillery from Germany or the USSR, depending on one's alignment. Brigades of 3Mil+1Art, stationed in Mexico's mountainous regions, can withstand even the most brutal of attacks. In urban areas, a unit of 3Gar+1AT can hold off even the most powerful combined arms assaults one can expect the USA to launch. Fighting in open terrain is suicide, so any vehicles other than Light Armor and Engineers should be avoided.


Although Mexico starts the game with both a Gulf and a Pacific harbor, in Tampico and Acapulco respectively, it has no navy whatsoever and lacks even the most basic naval technology. It also has a mere 11 IC (on normal), so major factory construction will need to be made before building a navy. When you do begin assembling the Fuerza Naval, stick to submarines as your attack vessels. You should at a minimum research Sea Lane Defence, to protect your trade from the war in the Atlantic.

Air Force

Mexico starts the game with a single interceptor, and no technology to make more. The Fuerza Aérea Mexicana should only be researched/built if one intends to invade the USA or expand into South America, as it will be a very long time before you can build carriers. Most Caribbean or South American nations have no planes at all, so you can focus more research into bombers. If you intend to take on the USAF, upgrade your interceptors as much as possible, to give them a fighting chance against the United States' superior technology and manpower.


Mexico's isolated position and proximity to the USA will prove to be a challenge for any player wishing to contribute to Allied forces, or expand into the Pacific. Because of the nation's limited IC and leadership, one must decide which path to take early in the game, and devote almost all research to the specialized units required for such a daunting task as an invasion.

War with X


Although an unaligned Mexico automatically joins the Allies in May 1942, fighting Japan as Mexico will require vast preparation, in addition to the risk of getting in the way of the USA's historical rampage through the Pacific. First and foremost, dedicate all of Mexico's naval research to submarines, as Mexican surface ships will become easy prey for the Imperial Navy. To ferry troops to the Pacific, join the Allies as soon as possible, and stock up on resources to make production runs of transport planes. Alternatively, one could join the actual war later, and make a beeline for Japan's territory in China, with the US navy keeping the sea lanes safe. With most of Japan's forces defending the home islands, Manchuria and Korea should quickly fall to Mexico's marine forces. With democratic governments installed in the Far East, the Cold War could quickly turn in the USA's favor.

Gaming the System

The Second Mexican-American War

Being located right below the USA will prove to be an obstacle any Axis or Comintern Mexico player will have to face. They guarantee the independence of every nation in the Americas, save the Caribbean nations. They also are the first to see your growing power as a threat, and probably the only one to act on it. If the player sees a need to take down Uncle Sam, one should strike mid-war, when the USA in occupied in both Europe and the Pacific. Having some allies could help with production runs, but one should not expect any nation, save the major powers, to invade the US on another front. Before the war begins, the player should upgrade Mexico's infrastructure along the border, in addition to building airbases and land forts as one sees fit. There are two major US armies along Mexico's border, in San Diego and Texas. If Mexico has a navy at this point, keep them in port, as facing the US Navy at sea early on is suicide. Build mountain divisions to push into the sparsely-defended Rockies, and take Denver and Salt Lake City to deny the USAF airbases in the area. If Mexico has any armor, they should be sent to the west coast, as there is little open terrain east of Texas. The US will most likely land 15 to 20 divisions, many of which are Marines, deep into Mexican territory, and make a beeline for the VPs along the coast. Building land forts in Mexico's central mountainous regions will delay the invasion long enough for the player to react accordingly.

The Second Mexican-American War: Plan B

Mexico has the possibility of rushing the USA in the early game, thus rising to a major power. To do this, begin the game with a custom start in 1936. Mexico has very limited resources, so you have to specialize in one branch: cavalry. Sounds cheesy and indeed it is, but it works. After dropping your neutrality as far as possible in the diplomacy screen we check for technology. You have barely any technology points to distribute so use most of them to push Mechanised Offensive and Tactical Command Structure at its limit(without penalties!) and get at least one upgrade for Operational Level Command Structure and Operational Level Organisation. Use any points left to upgrade the four cavalry techs. Next stage is the distribution of the armed forces. Delete everything and get yourself as many cavalry stacks (each three brigades) as you can. You will get about four full (or nearly full) corps of good old Mexican cavalry. You can now start the game. Fire the neutrality decision and organize your OOB. Due to the large area you are going to operate and the fact that you have way too few leaders you should form two army groups (east and west) each with two armies, no corps. Use the tips under the chapter Industrial Production and produce some more cavalry, also military police and garrison brigades and some convoys. The neutrality will be low enough at the end of 1936 or the beginning of 1937 - then its time to advance! The AI of the USA (you can watch it with 10 spies on passive action) will be building IC, convoys, ports and other buildings but no troops until now. All in all the USA navy is overwhelming but the land forces are non existent except some scattered infantry divisions. When the time for the rush has come, operate your army groups. One should strike the east coast and the other the west coast. Do not forget; even with your specialized tech the cavalry has no chance in any terrain against infantry, except when outnumbering or surrounding. But that does not matter, for your cavalry is faster then the infantry and you will be fighting mostly in plains or deserts and most of the time you are outnumbering the enemy troops. Use your fast raiders to surround and outmaneuver the enemy stacks one by one, denying them supplies, thus making it easy to beat them in combat. With this tactic take every VP and city and work your way up to the north. While conquering use the garrison/military police troops to secure important cities and supply routes. You should also invest some spies to lower their national unity because you can not reach the oversea victory points. After the successful rush you will boast about 120 base IC and about 13 leadership, still be factionless and having absolutely no threat twoards the three factions. Even with your tech tree quite screwed you have every possibility afterwards (factions, tech, army, navy, ...).

Building a realistic Mexican OOB

Despite Mexico's backward reputation, the nation has a very well-organized and flexible military. If one seeks realism, replace the Presidential Guard with a division of Infantería de Marina. Historically, in 1942, shortly after joining the Allies, Mexico sent an expeditionary force to defend the Philippines, as the archipelago has similar terrain as Mexico, and so one's military would be most effective there. If possible, edit the code to give Mexico a two-year draft in 1936, if one really wants to go that far. While one is editing, give Veracruz more leadership, to reflect the war college located there. The Infantería de Marina (marines) are known for their skill in amphibious assault, so research the appropriate combat techs to reflect that. Build a unit of paratroopers, dubbed Grupo Aeromóvil de Fuerzas Especiales (Special Forces Air-mobile Group), to quickly respond to any hostile landings or partisan uprisings in the Mexican homeland.

See Also

Country Navigation
Major Powers France · Germany · Italy · Japan · United Kingdom · United States of America · Soviet Union
Regional Powers Argentina · Australia · Belgium · Brazil · Bulgaria · Czechoslovakia · Guangxi Clique · Hungary · Manchukuo · Nationalist China · Nationalist Spain · Netherlands · Poland · Republican Spain · Romania · Sweden · Turkey · Yugoslavia
Minor Powers Austria · Canada · Chile · Colombia · Denmark · Finland · Greece · Ireland · Mexico · Norway · Peru · Portugal · Shanxi · South Africa · Switzerland
Micro Powers Afghanistan · Albania · Bhutan · Bolivia · Communist China · Costa Rica · Cuba · Dominican Republic · Ecuador · El Salvador · Estonia · Ethiopia · Guatemala · Haiti · Honduras · Iraq · Latvia · Liberia · Lithuania · Luxembourg · Mongolia · Nepal · New Zealand · Nicaragua · Oman · Panama · Paraguay · Persia · Philippines · Saudi Arabia · Siam · Sinkiang · Tannu Tuva · Tibet · Uruguay · Venezuela · Xibei San Ma · Yemen · Yunnan