Tacticular Cancer: We'll have your balls

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Decline Hearts of Iron 4 - The Ultimate WWII Strategy Game

Discussion in 'Strategy Gaming' started by GarfunkeL, Jan 23, 2014.

  1. I'm With Her Vaarna_Aarnegender: ⚧ for prison Notorious Internet Vandal Patron

    Vaarna_Aarne
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    The unit compositions are probably the way they are just so players can derp about with theirs more, I guess. Anyone can get someone to calculate the mathematically most optimal combinations, after all, but if one inputs those as the AI defaults you end up making them the only genuinely viable ones. The compositions aren't a real AI problem anyway, just a matter of templates.

    I think the shuffling is based around the plan front system sometimes acting in strange ways (usually when a front changes dramatically because of, say, a lake) or what appears to be the AI being extremely picky about the supply limits but also commanding multiple units at once to relocate because of that. When you have a front without supply issues, it does that considerably less. Haven't seen the AI actually abandon a front though, and there's one thing the AI actually finally knows how to do properly for the first time in the series history: Actually defend the British Isles in the event of invasion. Japan's AI still sucks at defending against invasions tho. Given that recently I've only been playing Kaiserreich, I suppose a big factor in this MIGHT be that the Union of Britain only has a single island to focus on so it's much less neurotic.

    Speaking of the "hot code" thing, I think it might have something to do with unit AI not executing plans following certain map changes inbetween the original creation of the plan and current situation. Seen that happen quite a bit with my own units when blitzing and events collide. That or its just some new bollocks for 1.4 situations.
     
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  2. Make America Great Again WhiskeyWolfgender: ⚧ RPG Codex Polish Car Thief Patron

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  3. Varvarggender: ⚧ Educated

    Varvarg
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    not to mention how bad the germs are at defending france. If you rely on germany, you better send 15 divisions to the ports, because hitler will just derp around with Eva in his bunker.

    Those damn british naval invasions. Should tone them down a bit in frequency, and instead make the A.I invest more divions into more decisive landings.
     
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  4. Make America Great Again Average Manateegender: ⚧ Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    Tried a game to see if AI improved, and holy fuck how is it still so shit? The AI will still rabidly attack into horrible battles, not even utilizing all available troops in the province and surrounding provinces. Have 3 provinces available to launch an attack from with 10 divisions each? Just start a bunch of attacks with 2 divisions at a time vs. the enemy's 6, when you could overrun it all by attacking with 16. Your divisions are at 15% equipment strength? Who gives a shit if they have 4 soft attack and the enemy has 400, anything that is fully ORGed is apparently a valid offensive unit. You could literally improve the game 100% with a single line of code that disables attacking with any division that has less than 90% strength and by forcing the AI to include all available units in the province and nearby provinces with the initial attack (up to the battle width). This is incredibly simple stuff that anyone writing an AI should not be able to fuck up. Until this happens you'll be able to win any war on any difficulty by literally doing nothing while the AI suffers millions of casualties per year.

    Funny enough, when you want want to attack the smartest way to do it is not to use the artificial "intelligence", but just to drag-select your entire army and right click on a province. This way your units intelligently choose the path that has the shortest travel time, meaning they tend to stick to high infra/good terrain and stack up to overwhelm the enemy. Then you get amazing encirclements everywhere from all the AI divisions in poor areas that never react and you clean up a third of their army. All the great minds at work trying to make an AI to handle war and its beaten by the HoI equivalent of 1a-2a-3a.

    Also the new Air UI is still a clusterfuck and annoying as hell. Germany is attacking Britain with 1000 fighters and 1000 bombers? Put your 1500 fighters on air superiority/interception over London. Wait, the next day they decided the bomb in the airzone of whogivesafuck that is 10 Miles north, so you need to reorder your planes there. Wait, now they switched to bombing the channel and you need to send your shit there so your fleet doesn't evaporate. Can't just split up your fighters in groups of 300 because they'll be obliterated due to being outmatched in numbers, so you need to go back every week to watch this shit even while trying to fight in the Med/Africa/Asia. Funny how HoI4 streamlined the ground combat to the point of absurdity yet literally nothing about the Air is automatable or works in a way that doesn't make you tear your hair out.

    Kaiserreich is pretty cool though. Had a game as nationalist France and had to fight a CoF that had a puppet Germany.
     
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  5. I'm With Her Vaarna_Aarnegender: ⚧ for prison Notorious Internet Vandal Patron

    Vaarna_Aarne
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    Kaiserreich's new version is p sweet, included updates for Austria like the two previously missing paths alternative to Greater Austrian Empire, reforming the Dual Monarchy or creating United States of Greater Austria.
     
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  6. Anthedongender: ⚧ Arcane Patron

    Anthedon
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    I'm currently playing Kaiserreich as the glorious CSA AUS. The AI seems to have gotten a wee bit better since launch, I haven't witnessed any total fuckups so far. Interface and graphics are still hilariously bad, but mods will not fix that I fear.

    Going to crush the remaining hippies on the west coast next and then maybe export some proper southern manners to other parts of the world.

    [​IMG]

    Just look at the focus tree, it's three screens big and that's just for one of the USA factions. Makes vanilla look reallly bad.

    [​IMG]
     
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  7. I'm With Her Vaarna_Aarnegender: ⚧ for prison Notorious Internet Vandal Patron

    Vaarna_Aarne
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    Biggest benefit to things is that Kaiserreich's scenario is, errrr... More balanced than real history. This results in a greater level of action all over the globe and a lot of wildcard countries.

    EDIT: It should also be noted that more countries have unique huge branching focus trees than have a generic focus tree at this point.
     
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  8. Raghargender: ⚧ Arcane

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  9. I'm With Her Vaarna_Aarnegender: ⚧ for prison Notorious Internet Vandal Patron

    Vaarna_Aarne
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    It's Road to '56, which is sort of like the Magna Mundi without all the irredeemably stupid shit of Magna Mundi mods for EU3, though in this case it's more closer to a compilation mod like a more closer to vanilla BlackICE (though BlackICE in HoI4 is more troubled by regular feature bloat, rather than just being filled with retardation like Magna Mundi's bloat).

    Pretty fun mod, definately my go-to if I want to play standard WW2 scenarios.
     
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  10. IHaveHugeNickgender: ⚧ Arcane

    IHaveHugeNick
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    Is that really a good thing?

    Don't get me wrong here, I would love this game to be a sandbox where anything goes, but even in vanilla I usually find myself playing with historical focus on. Otherwise you build up into 1939 as Axis only for AI Hitler to trigger war with 500 countries and you just wasted 3 hours of your life with nothing to show for it.
     
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  11. I'm With Her Vaarna_Aarnegender: ⚧ for prison Notorious Internet Vandal Patron

    Vaarna_Aarne
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    Well I think that's the reason the Kaiserreich scenario is more fun. The world there isn't as focused around a single country (Germany) as in regular WW2 scenarios, and between two factions. In vanilla you sort of have to leave historical focus on because otherwise things just sort of fall apart in terms of cohesion since everything is too interlinked with the standard WW2 so you can only really afford for the player's deviation from the focus paths.

    In Kaiserreich, the big thing is that the entire globe has been by and large designed around local crises and Mexican standoffs, while factions can only be joined via decision and event (or by being released as a puppet). This not only leads to a larger number of small wars, but there is also a much much larger number of top-dog countries rather than just Germany and USA overshadowing everyone else with possible exception of Soviet Union. The Mexican standoff approach plays by far the best for HoI4, since so many important wars (civil wars and Weltkrieg 2 itself) have multiple sides fighting in them and then have consequences for the larger scale (most obvious being question of who wins the Second American Civil War and Spanish Civil War). Wars and alliances are more local, and that's a very good thing overall, with the general framework of the Weltkrieg 2 remaining intact to tie things together when local goes global.

    Another benefit that the HoI4 version has I'd say is that the focus trees make it much more manageable for the game to herd the cats of its complex scenario and for the player to keep track of what's going on this time, and the HoI4 manpower system and other differences to HoI2 make it easier to make a more nuanced presentation of (almost) each country's strengths and weaknesses. And as usual, a result of this balance is that the number of interesting countries to play in Kaiserreich is bigger than ever (this is because original Kaiserreich already boasted enormous increase in this category).

    Also a thing I think is noteworthy is that Germany and USA start off getting a mountain of shit dropped on top of them, which makes things rather more interesting (USA campaign with current version is probably my favourite Kaiserreich experience ever, considering how desperate the fight at the start of the civil war was), particularly since one of my dislikes in original Kaiserreich was that Germany's position was too well off which usually made them beat Commune of France with relative ease. By contrast in HoI4 version, I have *never* seen AI Germany beat France on its own, which is the way it should be because *I* am the one who is supposed to stop these insane commies from conquering the world.
     
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  12. Anthedongender: ⚧ Arcane Patron

    Anthedon
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    Finished my AUS run from above by retaking the West Coast and liberating Canada. The biggest issues still is the AI using shitty division templates. My infantry was so superior to the Canadians that I didn't lose a single engagement.

    I'll check in again in another six months. But at this point I won't get my hopes up that Paradox can fix this game (mods can't touch the AI IIRC).
     
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  13. Space Satangender: ⚧ Arcane

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    Try ExpertAI+. You'll soon go to PRX forums whining about AI using OP templates and how it is nearlly impossible to win. Was priceless to see people facing classic Space Marine template against them and cannot do shit about it.
     
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  14. Make America Great Again Average Manateegender: ⚧ Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    Doesn't matter much if the AI is still so braindead that you can get Germany to suicide its entire population on the Maginot line. You can get the AI to use proper divisions on a general basis but its still completely unable to realize that attacking across rivers into forts or bad terrain is a bad idea without specialized divisions.
     
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  15. IHaveHugeNickgender: ⚧ Arcane

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    Expert AI 2.0 makes the game pretty hard tbh.
     
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  16. Space Satangender: ⚧ Arcane

    Space Satan
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    DD about future plans
    Show Spoiler

    Hi everyone, this week I'm going to take some time and talk future plans with you all.

    Right now
    With the "Oak" 1.4.2 patch out the door and the team back from vacation its time to start looking at the future. This week we started work on the next DLC which is going to be a full-sized expansion. A lot of people have been asking for more mechanics and larger changes, and this will be it. As normal the expansion will arrive together with a free update we've dubbed 1.5 "Cornflakes".

    As for exactly what these will contain you will need to bear with us a bit. As I said with us getting started on it now we need some time to actually make and test stuff before we start showing it off to you. This will mean that the next two diaries (if all goes according to plan) are going to be covering other stuff while we get ready. My plan there is to get some guest writing in from people who can talk about the business and process side of the company and team.

    The five year plan
    Not actually a five year plan, but I want to share with you some form of roadmap on what to expect in the future. Some of you may have seen me talk about some of this in my PdxCon talk earlier this year.

    Just to be super clear, this is not any form of exhaustive or final list and unless we have already done it we can't promise anythings. Priorities change etc. The point of this is to give you an idea of things we would like to do. The order of things is also not in any kind of priority order, or order we would do them.

    • Improve flavor and immersion with naming of things in the game. No more Infantry Division Type 1 etc.
    • More player control over naval warfare and fleet battle behaviour
    • A Chain of Command system allowing field marshals to command generals
    • A logistics system with more actual player involvement (now you only care once stuff has gone very badly)
    • Improved naval combat interfaces with good transparency to underlying mechanics (give it the 1.4 air treatment)
    • Improve balance, feedback and mechanics for submarine warfare
    • Long term goals and strategies to guide ai rather than random vs historical focus lists, visible to players
    • Every starting nation has a custom portrait for historical leaders
    • A way for players to take dynamic decisions, quickly. Somethign that fits between events and national focuses.
    • Spies and espionage
    • Changing National Unity to something that matters during most of the game rather than when you are losing only
    • Improving peace conferences
    • Update core national focus trees with alt-history paths and more options (Germany, Italy, USA, United Kingdom, Soviet, France, Japan)
    • Wunderwaffen projects
    • Properly represent fuel in some way in the game
    • Add the ability to clean up your equipment stockpile from old stuff
    • Rework how wars work with respect to merging etc as its a big source of problems
    • More differences between sub-ideologies and government forms
    • More National Focus trees. (Among most interesting: China, South America, Scandinavia, Spain, Turkey, Iran, Greece)
    • An occupation system that isnt tied only to wars and where core vs non-core isn't so binary for access to things.
    • Make defensive warfare more fun
    • Adding mechanics to limit the size of your standing army, particularly post-war etc
    • Allow greater access to resources through improving infrastructure
    • Have doctrines more strongly affect division designing to get away from cookie cutter solutions and too ahistorical gamey setups

    You'll notice that some of these are small and some of them are huge. I can't really talk too much details about this stuff though. That is stuff we will do once/if it makes it to dev diaries with feature highlights and has been implemented. Oh yeah, and before someone goes "why isn't improving AI on this list" the answer is that its not really something you can ever check off as done. We'll keep working on that in parallel with other stuff as we have since release.

    There is no World War Wednesday stream today since the channel is all streaming from Gamescom today, but you can now check out last weeks episode on youtube to see me run the dev team as generals in a massive co-op.
     
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  17. Stavrophoregender: ⚧ Learned

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    Devs of kaiserreich are the only thing that keeps this game afloat. Sadly when you've played couple of times you already know all events. Vanilla events and their amount is just a fucking joke compared to KR. HoI4 was too simple to begin with, more like a mobile game.
     
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  18. I'm With Her Vaarna_Aarnegender: ⚧ for prison Notorious Internet Vandal Patron

    Vaarna_Aarne
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    Cold War here we come!
     
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  19. Make America Great Again Average Manateegender: ⚧ Prestigious Gentleman Arcane

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    Paradox: Over a year past initial release and just now considering adding Chinese events/NFs
    KR: Something like 80 NF trees for various countries, most of them way better than vanilla.

    :negative:
     
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  20. I'm With Her Vaarna_Aarnegender: ⚧ for prison Notorious Internet Vandal Patron

    Vaarna_Aarne
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    On the subject of Kaiserreich, next version will have new focus trees for Fengtian, Japan, and Legation Cities, along with a reworked mechanic for Japanese control and influence in Fengtian. Along with this, Ethiopia and Somalia are getting extensive Focus Trees, which I think (still needs expanded South Africa and Mittelafrika/smaller colonies NF trees for proper rumble in the jungle) is neat because Africa largely existed as "the place the Kaiser flees to if he loses" on the map, so a little less conversation and a little more action to that continent is welcome too. That means that the only place without guaranteed action is 'straya.
     
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  21. Space Satangender: ⚧ Arcane

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    DD/ Chain of Command
    Show Spoiler

    Hi everyone and welcome back to regular dev diaries. This and upcoming diaries will be covering stuff happening in the 1.5 "Cornflakes" update as well as the unannounced expansion that will come out together with it. One of the main focuses of those can be summarized as "making players care more about armies, leaders and troops" (our DLCs tend to have 1-3 main focuses or missions). The first feature that touches on this, and the topic of today's dev diary is adding a military chain of command to the game.

    After Hearts of Iron III, where something like organizing the soviet chain of command could take about an hour of the players time we decided that we wanted something that was a lot less effort to work with for HOI4. We basically settled on a flat level with field marshals with no restriction on commanded divisions, and generals with a limit on division count but with a different set of traits. Over time we felt that we lost a bit too much of the WW2 military flavor with this abstraction, so we started thinking about how to do it in a more interesting way.

    [​IMG]
    What we have done now for 1.5 is that field marshals are now leading an Army Group, which is a certain number of Armies (what we had before) led by Generals. There are then places in theaters as before. Theaters are like before just a geographical organizational tool for the player and don't have a commander or the like to keep them as flexible as possible. This means that we have a Theaters->Army Groups->Armies->Divisions structure now.
    While the Generals still come with a soft cap for how many divisions they can efficiently command, the field marshals will now have a number of armies they can efficiently command.

    I also want to make sure to point out that this is still very early on in development, so stuff is very likely to change, and some stuff aren't completely working as it should yet. So we are showing you this in progress rather than showing a completely finished feature, and as always any numbers you see are extremely subject to change ;) Also I very sneekily hid the topbar for now ;)
    [​IMG]

    When it comes to controlling your troops the new system introduces some changes to the battle planner. You can either do a plan for each army in the army group, or have a central plan for the whole Army Group where each army has a part of the frontline assigned as its responsibility. You can also do a mix, in which case an Army will finish its plan and then fall back to executing the Army Group's plan. We are still iteration on this stuff though but I figured you all wanted to know how it would work in practice.

    [​IMG]

    Something that does not really come across in the images is that we are working on ways to streamline the process for setting up fronts using the new army groups. This should make at least the basic cases feel smooth to set up, even with one more command level and more armies without a ton of extra clicking.

    [​IMG]

    The sharp eyed reader will also notice that we have removed the skill level for generals. This is now replaced with separate skills of different kinds. Attack, Defense, Planning and Logistics. Attack and Defense do what you expect while Planning improves planning speed and Logistics lowers supply consumption. Field marshal stats apply together with army general stats at a reduced capacity, so you will always want to have a chain of command for best efficiency.

    The chain of command feature is going to be part of the free update, although there is some cool DLC features that tie into it we will be revealing in later diaries. Also expect to read more details about the system itself like how things in combat are affected etc.

    See you next week when we will be taking a look at national unity...

    Also some Q&A
    Q: Would the new "skill point" of commander increase over time? Or it is permanently fixed?
    Will the leaders skills in attack, defence, planning and logistics change (up or down) with game play?

    A:Yes
    Q: The two questions that occur to me are (1) will we still be able to have "independent armies" and (2) would it be possible for a General to command a army group, albeit with a lower number of armies he is able to oversee then a Field Marshall*.
    A: they have to be field marshals to do it. independent armies still work, but generally you will want to have a full chain for the bonuses
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2017
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  22. Anthedongender: ⚧ Arcane Patron

    Anthedon
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    15 months after release this is the first dev diary that looks like it's going in the right direction.
     
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  23. I'm With Her Vaarna_Aarnegender: ⚧ for prison Notorious Internet Vandal Patron

    Vaarna_Aarne
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    Kaiserreich team is detailing new additions to Liberia and the upcoming and sweeping changes to Mittelafriika:

    https://forum.paradoxplaza.com/forum/index.php?threads/progress-report-29.1044230/

    As I've said before, I strongly welcome there being rumble in the jungle as well from now on. Best part in Kaiserreich scenario, destruction and mayhem all over the world, is improved greatly. I also really dig the reworking of the Portuguese colonies and Mittelafrika shenanigans and the map rework. Hopefully overall this really does make so that Africa is no longer just the place the Kaiser goes to hide in order to creater perpetual war, and the place where panzers go to die (as in Elephants' graveyard sort of deal, I really welcome Africa being a deathtrap for mechanized armies too).
     
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  24. Deflowerergender: ⚧ Savant

    Deflowerer
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    So as a newfag to Hearts of Iron series, can anyone tell me if HoI4 is the best of the series as it is now (or will be, mods or otherwise)? Are there any major design differences that would make one prefer HoI2 or HoI3 instead?
     
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  25. Risogender: ⚧ Arcane

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    Hoi4 takes concepts introduced in Hoi3 and makes them actually work while jettisoning all the weird stuff that didn't work.

    You can choose between hoi2/Darkest Hour for scripted events and individual unit control or a more hands off strategic approach in Hoi4.
     
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