Paradox has always worked very close with modders and I'v gotten a lot of help on For the Motherland from many of the betas that have gone above and beyond duty to make this a great project. In fact todays dev diary is written by Devildread (of I.C.E. fame) who is one of our betas, I hope you will enjoy it!
Hi everyone and welcome to a new Dev Diary! This one will focus on something you spend most of your time on when playing Hearts of Iron III: namely, the world map.
Everyone noticed that the first version of HOI3 had a rather gameplay specific map, not really geographically correct but efficient about what it was designed for: grand strategy and multiple provinces tactics. This time now ends because you will play in the incoming For The Motherland expansion on an updated world map, with better accuracy and some nice features I am convinced you will love as much as we do.
Let's discover some part of it. Ladies and gentlemen: the new refined map!
(don't be afraid, you can click)
As a result of a cooperation between Paradox artist Aerie, the preliminary work from the Map Patch Project (from Van Diemen and Frank+Frei, helped by several contributors) and the re-work/merging process by me (Devildread), we are proud to introduce some of the new features you will be able to play with.
Capital relocation (Paris-Berlin-Warsaw are one province south from vanilla), Bruxelles is no longer on the French border.
Relocation/renaming of hundreds of provinces in order to better match reality and new rivers paths.
Poland-Lithuania border historically redrawn (then Lithuania gain back its land after the fall of Poland)
Modders, everything is transparent! This is not like I.C.E. where you had to change all the province IDs history, rework the OOB and such. Paris moved but Paris ID didn't change.
Along with that, a lot of terrain have been reworked to better match geography. More urban, more marshes, more difficult terrain and defense spot. HOI3 map required you to think about what you are doing when you launch an attack. This new map will actually make you plan ahead. What about those engineers you never really used? Let's bridge some rivers guys!
Everyone knows about the bocage and how it was difficult to attack a position on this terrain. Now Normandy features 3 hills-terrain provinces, abstractly representing bocage and giving severe penalties to any attacker. Plan your attack and prepare your defense with the same environnement the leader of WWII had to deal with.
As you can see in the world map linked above, a lot of coastlines have been reworked (if you don't believe me, you can compare with vanilla Semper Fi) so you can expect more realistic feeling from the map in some places such as Norway, USA, China or Japan.
Check all those lakes in Finland and Sweden. What about some Finland bottleneck defense in Winter War?
Nothing much to say, how cool is that?
You read me. Kiel Kanal is in the game now! Only crossable by the controller of Kiel and its allies. Bring some U-Boots and wreak havoc in the Atlantic while retreating your navy in the Baltic!
Check Hamburg inland port by the way.
ACTUAL SEPARATION OF EUROPE AND ASIA IN TURKEY
No more crossing the boshporus under ennemy fire without any penalty. Now this is real, you have a strait to cross and everyone knows how straits are hard to cross (and easy to defend).
And many more changes that I can't list here. You will see that in due time.
We hope this FTM feature will please you as much as we had fun making it and think about all the possibilities it brings on the table.
Thanks to Derkb for hosting the pictures