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Auto Promotion


As we all know, the autompromote-function allows a human player to increase a leader's command-capacity without sacrificing one of his skill-points. Autopromotion will, of course, need tome criteria by which it chooses which candidates to promote. AFAIK not much is known about that procedure.

In a recent thread about autopromotion Darkrenown mentioned a feature that I had not previously noted before (more on that later). I decided that I had to approach the subject from a more scientific angle and should not rely on episodical evidence gathered during various of my games. I set up several 'experiments' to shed some light on the questions at hand. And yes I am pompous, and yes I do take myself too seriously and yes I have nothing better to do at the moment

I hope that it'll help a bit. I know most of this will already have been dealt with in various posts.

I will try to find out (a) under what circumstances autopromotion takes place at all, and (b) which candidates have the highest chance of promotion when autopromotion does take place.

Item 1 - The number of available leader-slots is dependent on total size of land-, air- and naval-forces.


In earlier posts I had mentioned that in my experience the number of Leaders that got autopromoted to General and Fieldmarshal was directly related to land-army size. That had been a subjective observation, I wanted to quantify it in a controlled environment. It has been established that autopromotion takes place for BOTH leaders in the pool and leaders in the field (data not shown). I will not investigate the Lt.Gens simply because there are too many of them to keep track of.

Materials & Methods

Hearts of Iron 2 v1.2 (with manpower fix) (checksum: UBHQ)

Playing Germany, 1936, Grandcampaign, very hard/furious, start: 01-01-1936

Experiment 1.1 - Army Size and Land-Leader-Slots


04-01-1936 Reoccupation of the Rhineland

05-01-1936 delete all land-, air- and naval-units

15-01-1936 kill all starting Generals and Fieldmarshals and Old Guards by Hallsten's event (modified)

16-01-1936 check that no autopromotions took place while autopromotion was switched on

20-01-1936 start several staggered serial builds of militia, one build every 3 days, militia will arrive in batches of 1 or 2

(due to unforseen effects of gearing bonus)

note down number of divisions and any promotions + date


Date/Number of Divisions/Promotion/Historical Year

21-08-36 / 33 / G Hausser / 1944 (*) 08-10-36 / 51 / FM Hausser / 1946 (*) 09-10-36 / 51 / G von Kuechler / 1939 17-11-36 / 65 / G von Kluge / 1939 30-01-37 / 97 / G Gruen / 1937 10-02-37 / 101 / FM von Kuechler / 1942 11-02-37 / 101 / G Gercke / 1937 05-05-37 / 130 / G Ulex / 1937 24-06-37 / 151 / FM von Kluge / 1940 25-06-37 / 151 / G Heinrici / 1943 (*) 22-07-37 / 163 / G von Kiesling / 1990 (*) 22-10-37 / 194 / G von Manstein / 1939 08-11-37 / 201 / FM von Kiesling / 1990 (*) 09-11-37 / 201 / G Guderian / 1940 15-01-38 / 227 / G von Bock / 1938 17-03-38 / 251 / FM von Manstein / 1942 18-03-38 / 251 / G von Brauchitsch / 1938 30-03-38 Anschluss of Austria 01-04-38 / 276 / G von Leeb / 1938 ??-04-38 / ??? / G von Wietersheim / 1938 (**) 04-06-38 / 301 / FM Heinrici / 1990 05-06-38 / 301 / G Keitel / 1938 04-08-36 / 324 / G Student / 1944 (*) was in command of a stack that exceeded his command limits at the time of promotion (**) due to a mistake and Anschluss no precise data is available Click to expand...


* For ca. every 32.5 units the autopromote-function will promote a Lt.General to full General

* A new General will appear for the 33rd, 65th, 97th, 130th, 163rd, 194th, 227th etc. unit

* For ca. every 50 units the autopromote-function will promote a General to Field Marshal

* A new Fieldmarshal will appear for the 51st, 101st, 151st, 201st, 251st, etc. unit

* By analogy a new Lt.Gen should in theory appear for the 3rd, 5th, 7th, 10th, etc. unit

* The historical year is of no importance

* It seems that a leader who exceeds his command limit will get preferential treatment for the next promotion, more data will be collected in a future experiment (this was what Darkrenown pointed me to).

* It seems some sort of random element is involved during the selection of a candidate.

* It seems that leaders with high skill and/or many traits get special treatment (note: Gercke is an exception) during the selection

* For every General that gets promoted to Fieldmarshal, a Lt.Gen will be promoted to fill the empty position

* Promotions take place at 00:00 the day after the army-size criteria creates a new slot

* These numbers correspond to the leader_ratio numbers found in the German AI-files.

* These numbers are not the same I got from my current game (more on that later)


I did not check whether different units types have different impact on army-size (I believe they do not)

These numbers have only been checked for Germany and only for very hard/furious

I believe slider-positions, number of HQs etc. do not influence autopromotion

Experiment 1.2 - Follow up experiments

1.2.1 Influence of air-units


04-01-1936 Reoccupation of the Rhineland

05-01-1936 delete all air- and naval-units, delete 10 land-units (leaving 30 divisions)

15-01-1936 kill all starting Generals and Fieldmarshals and Old Guards by Hallsten's event (modified)

16-01-1936 check that no autopromotions took place while autopromotion was switched on

20-01-1936 build 3 parallel builds of interceptors (Level 1)


The day after the 3rd interceptor is deployed the first (land) General appears.

1.2.2 Influence of naval-units

Procedure: same as with air-units, but building Submarines (Level 2) instead

Results: same as with air-units

1.2.3 Influence of Miscellaneous


Number of deployed HQs, the year, the state-of-war have no influence on the number of Leader-slots

Conclusions: All units (air, land & sea) count towards the available slots for land-leader auto-promotion. Total size of all armed-forces seems to be the only contributor to autopromotion.

I will take a closer look at what candidates receive preferential treatment in another post ...

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