CORE, or Community Open Resource Exchange, aims at recreating the period 1936-1952 in the most historically accurate manner possible while still allowing the player as much freedom of choice and direction as is plausible. It contains expanded and more detailed tech trees, corresponding units, tech teams and a large number of events, reflecting both historical actions and possibilities. Both Industrial Capacity („IC‟) and resources for the entire game have been revised to better reflect reality in the late 1930s.
Other features include:
- Reserve divisions instead of militia (a reserve unit is less mobile, and has less heavy weapons - such as artillery. These units form the mainstay of the armies of the minor and semi-industrialized countries);
- Rares scarcity;
- Historical Waffen-SS divisions with varying strength, organization and skill;
- A 1:1 naval ship representation;
- Negative resource production (representing civilian spoilage of energy and oil).
CORE goes into a lot more detail than the vanilla game in terms of technologies, units and events. Nations have techs representing their relative level of development industrially and technologically, tech representing the prevailing military mindset, and so on. There is a representation of both nations producing domestically high technology items like planes and tanks, while also representing nations who had poorly developed or no industry in these areas.
The land, sea and air units have been totally reworked to better fit the actually used units of the era into the model given in HoI2, including such details as differentiation between large and small pattern divisions, first and second class infantry divisions, a substantially expanded and nuanced naval tree and an air tree incorporating not just development of the aircraft themselves but also the underlying industrial base.
Doctrines have also been comprehensively reworked to reflect the changes and again to better fit how the team sees the evolution of doctrine in the period. The land tree, for example, comprises many incremental developments in a wide variety of fairly specialized areas of focus, while the aerial tree charts the development of national air forces from rudimentary air force, incorporating operations focus, into the jet age.
The industrial tree separately charts the nations recovery from the Great Depression, the development over time of heavy and light industry, and the evolution of industrial science, while the secret weapons tree covers the full development history of both nuclear weapons programmes and rocket and jet programmes, plus a few other surprises. The ever-expanding package of events represents major events both within and between nations of the time.
CORE offers a greatly expanded experience, and aims at being the most in-depth representation of the period.
The basic CORE installer, which fully supports moddir, includes generic graphics for techs, tech teams, leaders, ministers and generic models that have been updated to fit the latest release. There are also optional packages to download with an even greater amount of graphics available, such as country-specific model graphics and tech imagery.