Japan's economy blog post

Might be of interest to some:


Removing debt from Japan will be pretty cool.

You could go ultracapitalist and reduce most expensive policies.
At least military spending will be close to none (it can’t have strong military)

1 Like

Actually its surprising. Technically they only have a defence force, and cannot actually initiate combat etc… but Japans military budget is quite high. The equivalent of $51 billion, or 0.9% of GDP. Lower than the UK and much lower than the US, but not amazingly so.


As it stands right now, Japan is unplayable. Right out of the starting gate, Debt Crisis fires even with the modifier to reduce it. Any attempt to cut spending or increase taxes only compounds the problems and further worsens the economy, sending me into a spiral I can’t recover from.

Since Japan isn’t in a debt crisis IRL, as you noted, I think the modifier keeping it from starting needs to be strengthened some more. Just getting the situation crashes the economy and puts paying the debt back out of reach simply because debt interest takes up the bulk of expenditures once the economy contracts no matter how much I cut.


Hmmmm, are you playing with the Economic Cycle being 0%?

Myself, I got rid of debts with Economic Cycle being 200% and getting rid of taxes.

Oh, I don’t change any of the sliders when I start the game. Though IMO I shouldn’t have to.

1 Like

I just tried playing with economic cycle at 100% (it doesn’t go to 200%). Debt Crisis fired on the second turn, and the economy crashed and could not recover. Had to eliminate most public spending since 40% of expenditures were debt interest.

I say again, Japan is unplayable without messing with the code or reducing the starting debt.

1 Like

I’m sure I have managed to turn japan around with the default setting. It might just be very dependent on play style. I’ll take a look at play stats and see if everyone is finding japan impossible or not.
It might be that japan is one country where you just have to see that a debt crisis is inevitable and work within it. (this can be done!).

Arguably Japan has been in a debt crisis for decades now. The economy has not collapsed but its definitely having an impact.


Okay, I’m trying to play as Japan right now. Difficulty = 100% (…) (Economic Cycle = 100%), (Starting Debt = 1,328,000 B)

There’s 2 ways to play here:

  1. Remove all taxes and use the debt to your advantage.
  2. Get rid of debt and use that to your advantage.

I’ve used the second one and I got Debt Interest on my third turn, the productivity here is down to the ground, so increasing the GDP might be harder because there’s also uncompetitive economy and corporate exodus. You can indeed have more income than expenditure but the debt there doesn’t appear that you can get rid of it, but I really believe is playable either way.

1 Like

its probably good for us to have at least one country thats SERIOUSLY hard.


Gettind rid of Japan debt sounds like a big achievement but I wonder if it s fun to extort the citizens to get rid of it.

1 Like

Japan ruined me on my first try, as was the case with France (a welfare state with the expenditure of a more developed economy on the brink of collapse). After you understand how critical it is to cut spending for all but GDP/productivity boosting programs and slam all the taxes you can, it’s “winnable”. Eventually I even got to a AAA credit rating by slamming through my turns after utopianising the country in the late game.

It does take an experienced grasp of the mechanics though. Perhaps countries ought to be labelled for their difficulty. I could imagine a new player trying out Japan and being scared away by going into Emergency Powers on turn 3.

1 Like

the difficulty slider exists for a reason, cliff should make more use of it

A whole bunch of events will start being nudged into being more/less likely by the difficulty slider starting with the next game update!