I wonder if we'll get a reasonably fleshed out timeline for WW2. I study a lot of WW2 history and do a lot of alt-WW2 discussions, so the idea behind the game is pretty darn fascinating to me.
At any rate, what are your theories about Wellington Wells and its role in (and after) World War 2?
I've been trying to guess the narrative/lore that will come out, so here is my best guess:
I believe that its been stated that the POD is no earlier than 1933. This would be telling, as it gives some possible core divergences to explain the world of WHF. In the game, there's no mention of a Nazi Germany, only an "Imperial Germany". This may be due to marketing/PR concerns of the game focusing on Nazis, or may be telling as to the lore of the game.
If its the latter, then it would suggest that there's a POD involving Hindenburg and Hitler. One could surmise that Paper or Schleicher were able to out-maneuver Hitler and the Nazis politically, re-instanting a more conservative, but less democratic government, as both were attempting to do in Weirmar Germany during their crises in the early 30s.
If true, this would change the course of Germany. Maybe Hitler becomes part of, but not the figurehead of the government, and is only a minor cog in what became of the Alt-WW2.
From there, its kind of hard to logically figure out how Germany invades and destroys Britain in a war by 1944, IMO. You could have a few different PODs, like America having a political revolution in the early 30s, turning communist and supporting someone like Robert Lafollette in the wake of the Great Depression. This would possibly explain Britian's collapse (without Lend Lease), as well as the USSR making a desperate stand into the late 1940s in a much more grueling Eastern Front.
If a crazed guy like Hitler isn't ruling Germany, its possible that a similar war is prosecuted in France as we had OTL, but if Dunkirk happened differently - if the British lose - and the Germans approach the Luftwaffe different (more tactical/strategic bombers), then its possible that their tactical situation is much improved over what was in our timeline. With a focus on beating the British, Barbarossa never happens while the Germans continue to pound at the British aerially, while slowly working to defeat the Royal Navy in preparation for a land invasion.
Conversely, we know that in our history, Stalin was probably winding up the Soviet military for a confrontation with Germany by 1943, or 1942 at the earliest. There's no mention of German occupation of any other nation (that I know of?), but the game does seem to suggest France is taken over. Assuming a Soviet strike in 1943, this would explain the propaganda/news concerning Von Stauffen getting as much material into Germany in 1944 as the Eastern War rages on.
Assuming that Germany is on the defensive initially, its plausible that they could hold out quite well against the Soviets for quite some time in a war of attrition. However, like in our time line, German manpower would be greatly sapped, as the Soviets had about a 3:1 manpower advantage at the start of the war (in 1941), and increased it to 5:1 after blunders like Stalingrad, which robbed the Germans of soldiers during operatings after Kursk. Its plausible, then, by 1946 or 947 that they'd need as many soldiers as possible, thus leading to whatever lore is involved in 1947 when the Germans start taking kids under the age of 1947. I am unsure if the reason the Germans took the kids was legitimately due to a draft against the Soviets (if so, why not take the older military-aged men instead?), or if it was some offshoot of Liebensborn, or something else entirely.
Either way, its much suggested that a huge number of kids were taken starting in 1947, leading to the breeder riots in 1952, which seems to be a main part of the conflict that requires Joy. When Arthur finds the initial article that turns him away from Joy, it involves his brother being taken away (at least from the audio played) by the trains due to the draft.
So there you go, those are my thoughts on what would may of (plausibly) happened in 1933-1947 or whereabouts. What are your theories behind the way the world is?