Hearts of Iron Preliminary Preview #3

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The cynical Paradoxian looks at Hearts of Iron 3 and asks himself "Okay, it’s out in a couple of months. But when are they going to release the expansion to make it playable?" It’s not so cynical as it seems, especially for those of us with memories of how sub-par EU3 was on release, and how older Paradox titles (CK, Vicky) only reached classic status after a series of giant patches and a solid expansion. Continuing the theme of the previous blog post, though, I can also say that here Paradox has learned a great deal from their experiences on other titles. As you might expect, the team being as hard-working and fan-accountable as they are. 

HOI3 is, even right now, way more polished than I remember EU3 being at release. I’ve had some serious crashes, some events are messed up/nonexistent, and the AI isn’t quite all the way there yet- but it is pretty fun and engrossing and I predict that the few weeks of development they have remaining will see most of those bugs squashed. Which doesn’t mean there won’t be patches and expansions. Let’s speculate what form some of them might take. Feel free to join me in the comments. 

  • Timeline: The most obvious expansion is the one that extends the gametime. Right now I think things come to a stop somewhere in the late forties (haven’t gotten that far yet with my Soviet Union playthrough). With some some new events we could be gaming the Korean War by Christmas. The more interesting expansion, of course, would be backwards, before 1936. Maybe even right up to the end of World War I. Think of all the sweet campaigns: the Russian Civil War (western interventions too), the Polish-Bolshevik war and other attempts by the new state to ‘export the revolution,’ the ongoing conflicts in China, U.S. imperialism in Central America, etc. Of course an expansion of this type is unlikely, because WW2 is obviously the focus here. A man can dream though.
  • TechnologyThe tech tree in HOI3 peters out right around the time that jet engines and modern assault weapons arrive. Unfortunately that’s more or less where things really start to heat up, technologically. Maybe for the expansion the way in which technology diffuses could change too. The ‘buy production liscense’ works for larger countries trading amicably with other large countries, but what about the wars that took place in that expanded timeline out to 1960? Algeria, Vietnam, Korea, China, Kenya, etc? They were major military challenges to the powers of prewar Europe and the hardware their opponents acquired wasn’t bought so much as stolen outright. Maybe a country can upgrade its military simply by capturing the equipment of a more ‘advanced’ nation? This is unlikely too because of the focus being on The Big War and less on what happened after it.

And of course there’s the modding potential as well. In a development diary Johan unveiled the mod system, which from the looks of it is very similar to EU3’s- they share an engine, after all. So even if none of my predictions are realized officially there’s always hope in the modding forums. 

 

2 Responses to Hearts of Iron Preliminary Preview #3

  1. Evan says:

    You're absolutely right about equipment, and among minor countries there was a lot of purchasing arms from the major powers and using captured equipment from opponents before and during WWII. HoI2 didn't capture that at all, and I'm afraid HoI3 won't either.

  2. Evan says:

    You're absolutely right about equipment, and among minor countries there was a lot of purchasing arms from the major powers and using captured equipment from opponents before and during WWII. HoI2 didn't capture that at all, and I'm afraid HoI3 won't either.

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