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Drone
Aug 22, 2003

How can you have a yellow alert in Spacedock?



Game Released: 6. June 2016


What is this game?

Hearts of Iron IV is the latest installment of Paradox Interactive’s Hearts of Iron series of grand strategy games, covering the rough time period surrounding World War 2 (1936-1948, though previous games have bumped the cap all the way up to 1964). Prior to Europa Universalis III, the Hearts of Iron series was Paradox’s best-selling product, allowing the player to take control of an country in the world during the conflict, from the great powers of the Allies and Axis, all the way down to tiny little Bhutan. The Hearts of Iron series (mainly HOI2) have been showcased in almost all of the major goon mega-LP’s that span the entire timeline of Paradox games.

I thought Hearts of Iron 3 was a poo poo game? What’s different now?

Hearts of Iron 3 is sortof a sad story. It was broken at launch in ways that are pretty much unthinkable for modern Paradox games, and suffered a lot from questionable design, bad AI, overcomplexity, and piss-poor optimization. As with most Paradox games it gradually got better over time (and with expansions), but it remains a mediocre game. Still, it has a small but dedicated base of people who somehow insist that it's great.

With Hearts of Iron 4, Paradox has spent several years in what has generally been a quite long development cycle to re-examine the holy cows of the Hearts of Iron series and to make sure they hit this nail on the head. A short bulleted summary of the major changes:

  • Historical railroading is now less of a thing. There are two game modes to choose from at start: one where things will tend to follow more of a historical path that leads to WW2 starting in August of 1939, and another where things are slightly more open-ended in a vein similar to CK2 or EU4.
  • Micromanagement of your armies is now supposed to be much less of a thing. In HOI3 you had the very basic option of letting the AI control your armies, setting simple goals for them (“take Warsaw”), that they would then attempt to carry out. Unfortunately this never quite worked in HOI3, and Paradox has re-examined it and made the system much more robust. You can now create your own overall grand strategy for each army to carry out, drawing fun little arrows on the map to plan your corridors of invasion, timings, etc. It seems to aim for a replication of a “war room” experience, where general staff would plan the top-level operational strategy of the war. However, direct control of all units is still in, for players who want the classic experience.
  • While HOI4 is still very much a wargame, the reduced focus on micromanagement means the scope of the game has changed somewhat. In previous titles, pretty much the sole focus of play was on fighting and winning wars via direct control of everything. In HOI4, that focus remains to a degree, but you are now very much managing a country at war.
  • Production has changed greatly. Instead of building individual units, which cost IC points, as in previous titles, you are now setting up production lines and assigning priorities to them. For example, if you know you’re going to be fighting a massive air war, you may decide to set up a production line to spit out Hawker Hurricanes. Over time, you will get more and more efficient at producing Hawker Hurricanes. At some point they will become outdated, and the player is then faced with the choice of continuing to pump out this workhorse plane, or switch to a shiny new Spitfire, at the cost of losing some efficiency.
  • Control of your country’s politics is also enhanced, and the player is now able to determine which of the three ideologies to side with, regardless of which country you play. As the USA, you can choose to appoint Communist or Fascist advisors, which will gradually increase the power of those factions and lead to them taking power -- though probably not without fighting a Second American Civil War first!

Aren’t Paradox games just one big DLC-fest?

Yes and no. Paradox has a fairly unique continuous development cycle for all of their internally-developed titles, with games continuing to be supported with regular new content for years after their release. Crusader Kings 2 was released in like 2011 and is still getting regular expansions. Also unique to Paradox is the release of huge free patches with each expansion, providing all players with some of the content of the expansions for nothing. The DLC model is meant to be a la carte based on what the player wants in their game (“want to play Vikings in CK2? Buy The Old Gods,” etc.). The same is likely to be true for Hearts of Iron 4.

Also there’s a bunch of cosmetic DLC that is purely optional. The music DLC’s tend to be very good though, and Andreas Waldetoft is probably one of the best composers that nobody has heard of in the business. Also, Paradox DLC and their games in general go on sale really often.

What about multiplayer?

In the past few years, Paradox has placed a much greater focus on their multiplayer development. Paradox multiplayer games now have pretty good netcode, and are known for being a lot of fun. There is currently a long-standing group of goons who play weekly Paradox multiplayer, MapGoons. It’s fun, there’s diplomacy and backstabbing, and shooting the poo poo with goons for 3 hours at a time while politicking and warring is pretty great.

For HOI4, Paradox has also added the option of co-op country management. If it’s just you and a buddy, the both of you can control the same country, dividing the duties up between yourselves. This could potentially result in some hilarious Japan games where one player takes over the IJA and another the IJN, simulating the infamous real-world rivalry between army and navy in the Japanese Empire.

Expansions/DLC

  • Together for Victory: The first post-release expansion, which offers unique focus trees for the Commonwealth countries, plus new subject interaction/production/annexation mechanics, autonomy system for subjects, Lend-Lease changes, technology sharing, and spearhead battleplans. Release: 15 Dec 2016
  • Death or Dishonor: Unique focus trees and ahistorical options for Hungary, Romania, Czechoslovakia, and Yugoslavia; conversion of outdated equipment; new diplomacy including ability to purchase equipment production licenses from other nations; new puppet interactions for Axis. Release: 14 Jun 2017
  • Waking the Tiger: Upcoming Asia-focused DLC. Includes long-awaited focus trees for Nat. China and the PRC, as well as tweaked focus trees for Germany and Japan that allow them to do more ahistorical stuff (bring back the Kaiser as Germany, go Democratic, make August von Mackensen your leader, etc.). Also some stuff about assigning air wings to ground commanders, and bringing back a slightly more HOI3-reminiscent system of assigning generals to field marshals. Release: TBD.

Mods

  • Kaiserreich: the much-loved Darkest Hour total conversion mod is coming to HOI4! Development is still in very early days and is only pre-release, but keep an eye on it. Currently infamous for bloated focus trees, a fanatic community, and weird design choices. Kaiserreich mod team are also VERY visible at Paradox events.
  • Après Moi, Le Déluge: an alternate history mod by our very own Enjoy, based on how the world might have unfolded if Napoleon had won.
  • The Great War: a really popular World War 1 conversion mod. Overall good.
  • Millennium Dawn: a really popular but also really bad modern-day conversion mod that lets you conquer the world as ISIS, institute monarchy in the US, bring back the Nazis in Germany, or unite the EU into a game-breaking powerhouse. It has some background ideas that are mildly interesting, but overall suffers from the fact that HOI4 can't simulate modern warfare at all.
  • The Road to '56: a kitchen sink mod that contains a ton of little adjustments. It seems to be pretty popular, but it's got some issues (namely that the AI has absolutely no clue what to do with all the new focus trees, which leads to WW2 never happening as it did IRL). Still fun to play around with for a bit.

What's up with the thread title?

Paradox released an eBook about life in the RAF as part of the pre-order bonuses. It's quite bad.

Are there a lot of wehraboos in this community?

Boy howdy.

Useful links:

Official HOI4 wiki
All HOI4 dev diaries
Official Paradox Twitch channel (tune in for World War Wednesdays)

Drone fucked around with this message at Nov 17, 2017 around 11:23

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Drone
Aug 22, 2003

How can you have a yellow alert in Spacedock?


Reserved for future use sometime maybe.

Apoplexy
Mar 9, 2003


They picked a nice picture to use for Adolf Hitler, at least!

Stairmaster
Jun 8, 2012



I think it's cool that the major nations have unique tank tech trees.

THE BAR
Oct 20, 2011

You know what might look better on your nose?


Apoplexy posted:

They picked a nice picture to use for Adolf Hitler, at least!

What's up with the blue eyes, though, or am I blind?

ExtraNoise
Apr 11, 2007



Reposting for posterity.

Agean90 posted:

We were somewhere around Berlin when the drugs began to take hold

dublish
Oct 31, 2011


Wooper
Oct 16, 2006

Champion draGoon horse slayer. Making Lancers weep for their horsies since 2011. Viva Dickbutt.


Apoplexy posted:

They made their artist create a majestic picture of Adolf Hitler, at least!

Koesj
Aug 3, 2003


It's me, I'm the stupid fucker who put hundreds of hours into HoI3

Verviticus
Mar 13, 2006

Security? Please escort the fan in section 106, row 16, seat 1 out of the building right now and bar him from coming here again!


this game i assume fixes the thing where id tell bombers to hit, say, london, and they'd go off and indefinitely bomb some shithole province that shared its territory, right

"bomb uh, generally, in this area, sort of" *blasts the poo poo out of the same field for 3 years*

ThaumPenguin
Oct 9, 2013



Drone posted:

Crusader Kings 2 was released in like 2011

Crusader Kings 2 actually came out on February 14th, 2012

Which is basically 2011 so yeah.

Stairmaster
Jun 8, 2012



2012 was a better year than 2011.

Gort
Aug 18, 2003


Stairmaster posted:

I think it's cool that the major nations have unique tank tech trees.

There isn't any difference statwise - it's just a picture and some text, same as every HoI game.

The interesting new bit is armament companies that modify every vehicle researched in some way.

Gort
Aug 18, 2003


Verviticus posted:

this game i assume fixes the thing where id tell bombers to hit, say, london, and they'd go off and indefinitely bomb some shithole province that shared its territory, right

"bomb uh, generally, in this area, sort of" *blasts the poo poo out of the same field for 3 years*

No

mackintosh
Aug 18, 2007


Semper Fidelis Poloniae


Verviticus posted:

this game i assume fixes the thing where id tell bombers to hit, say, london, and they'd go off and indefinitely bomb some shithole province that shared its territory, right

"bomb uh, generally, in this area, sort of" *blasts the poo poo out of the same field for 3 years*

I wouldn't hold my breath on that one.

Verviticus
Mar 13, 2006

Security? Please escort the fan in section 106, row 16, seat 1 out of the building right now and bar him from coming here again!


god loving damnit

Ghost of Mussolini
Jun 26, 2011


It's a realistic depiction of how strategic bombing worked in ww2 however!

Enjoy
Apr 18, 2009

The very sight of him was enough to make Bush, who had already had one drink from the well, feel consumed with thirst all over again.


Get in the HoI4 mood by watching this vid about wartime industrial design

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q_0z1kvM6ns

ArchangeI
Jul 15, 2010


Apoplexy posted:

They picked a nice picture to use for Adolf Hitler, at least!

The paradox forums are currently having a complete meltdown about that (or more specifically, the lack of it in the German version).

Drone
Aug 22, 2003

How can you have a yellow alert in Spacedock?


Didn't they say they were going to use the blacked-out portrait as the default for all countries, but those who aren't in Germany would get it "activated" by a DLC that everyone automatically gets at launch (except Germans)? Or was that just a silly rumor?

We have reached the age of Hitler DLC.

While I love all of the leader portraits their artists have done for this game, I really honestly think they should have done Hitler's up in a Looney Tunes caricature style instead of going for full-on glorious Nazi propaganda of blue-eyed, Iron Cross-wearing Hitler.

CommunistPancake
Mar 4, 2013

you belong in the bog of eternal stench



Sniper Elite V2 already had Hitler DLC.

Mantis42
Jul 26, 2010

Spinning Sufis on their heads
Are hearing tones of wisdom
Devilish women warning
Men of their actions,
Now bring them
To you and me


CommunistPancake posted:

Sniper Elite V2 already had Hitler DLC.

To be fair, it was DLC about shooting Hitler in his Nazi balls.

ArchangeI
Jul 15, 2010


Drone posted:

Didn't they say they were going to use the blacked-out portrait as the default for all countries, but those who aren't in Germany would get it "activated" by a DLC that everyone automatically gets at launch (except Germans)? Or was that just a silly rumor?

Yeah, but you see, the German version is geolocked and that's basically the holocaust all over again. People are literally unironically canceling preorders over it.

Really the only thing I care about is whether my German version plays nice with mods and MP, and if it means that I have to use the no doubt terrible German translation.

Drone
Aug 22, 2003

How can you have a yellow alert in Spacedock?


ArchangeI posted:

Yeah, but you see, the German version is geolocked and that's basically the holocaust all over again. People are literally unironically canceling preorders over it.

Really the only thing I care about is whether my German version plays nice with mods and MP, and if it means that I have to use the no doubt terrible German translation.

For what it's worth, I live in Germany too and I'm nearly positive that you can play the German version in the English language. No Hitler portrait for us though.

It's not like this is exactly a new thing for Paradox, and it is German law. In previous Hearts of Iron incarnations, the German versions even went so far as to completely rename Hitler (to Alois Hiller or something like that)

ExtraNoise
Apr 11, 2007



Even if they release Hitler DLC™ geo-locked, I'm confident that within 48 hours someone will have an unofficial patch in the form of a mod that contains the unlocked graphic file. And the type of people bitching are also probably the kind that can figure out how to install a mod. It's really no big deal and people need to chill the hell out.

ThaumPenguin
Oct 9, 2013



ExtraNoise posted:

Even if they release Hitler DLC™ geo-locked, I'm confident that within 48 hours someone will have an unofficial patch in the form of a mod that contains the unlocked graphic file. And the type of people bitching are also probably the kind that can figure out how to install a mod. It's really no big deal and people need to chill the hell out.

Germans using mods the Hitler portrait cannot get achievements in Ironman.

It's gonna happen.

Shark Sandwich
Sep 6, 2010

The review you had on "Shark Sandwich", which was merely a two word review, just said "Shit Sandwich".



They should just make it clear it's actually Mr. Hilter and the National Bocialist party

ZearothK
Aug 25, 2008

The only mystery left,
is what I put in your tea.


Does this game represent tank destroyers accurately? Asking for a friend.

Ghost of Mussolini
Jun 26, 2011


ExtraNoise posted:

Even if they release Hitler DLC™ geo-locked, I'm confident that within 48 hours someone will have an unofficial patch in the form of a mod that contains the unlocked graphic file. And the type of people bitching are also probably the kind that can figure out how to install a mod. It's really no big deal and people need to chill the hell out.
I think you misunderstand how paradox interactive are violating my human rights.


By the way does anyone want to help me with my mod to accurately represent the OOB of every SS division ?

Hallucinogenic Toreador
Nov 21, 2000

Whoooooahh I'd be
Nothin' without you
Baaaaaa-by

ZearothK posted:

Does this game represent tank destroyers accurately? Asking for a friend.

If your friend cares enough to ask the answer is no. This applies to all issues of accuracy in the game.

ExtraNoise
Apr 11, 2007



ThaumPenguin posted:

Germans using mods the Hitler portrait cannot get achievements in Ironman.

It's gonna happen.

Couldn't they just get the Hitler portrait .DDS file from the international version from a friend/associate and replace it with the one in the game's base files, then? I don't know if this would alter the checksum and/or if this is what disabling achievements checks.

ZearothK
Aug 25, 2008

The only mystery left,
is what I put in your tea.


Graphic mods usually don't change the checksum.

Crash74
May 11, 2009


O cool is this the new dating sim from paradox?

Takanago
Jun 2, 2007

You'll see...


Can't wait to play HoI4 Kaiserreich

Alikchi
Aug 18, 2010

Thumbs up I agree


Takanago posted:

Can't wait to play HoI4 Kaiserreich

Seconding this. Aren't there one or two KR dev goons?

PleasingFungus
Oct 10, 2012



ZearothK posted:

Graphic mods usually don't change the checksum.

Does changing country map colours in EU4 still invalidate achievements?

Airfoil
Sep 10, 2013

I'm a rocket man


ExtraNoise posted:

Reposting for posterity.




Berlin Manila

1337JiveTurkey
Feb 17, 2005



College Slice

Don't forget that they completely redid logistics in a way that's less resource intensive to simulate, easier for the computer to make decisions based on and making everybody freak the gently caress out because why couldn't Hitler build some Speer-sized pseudo-neoclassical monstrosity of a gas tank and fill it with enough fuel in 1936 to last him for the whole war?

Star
Jul 15, 2005

Guerilla war struggle is a new entertainment.


I can't really put my finger on why but the UI bothers me somehow. The colors and the size of buttons and stuff feels way too bloaty or something.

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az
Dec 2, 2005



ZearothK posted:

Does this game represent tank destroyers accurately? Asking for a friend.

It's got a little bit more to it than hoi2 at least, every tank design has a researchable Spaa, Spag and Spat version.

1337JiveTurkey posted:

Don't forget that they completely redid logistics in a way that's less resource intensive to simulate, easier for the computer to make decisions based on and making everybody freak the gently caress out because why couldn't Hitler build some Speer-sized pseudo-neoclassical monstrosity of a gas tank and fill it with enough fuel in 1936 to last him for the whole war?

Tbh stockpiling was a large part of the pre war game in hoi2. Yes Stalin, I vant to buy all your oil and rare metals. Vat for you ask, oh nothing really, just vorking on my Lebensraum.

But the new system looks good and if the paradox forums are mad about it it has to be good.

az fucked around with this message at May 19, 2016 around 20:45

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