HOI4 Dev Diary - 1.8 Patch (wut?!) & Focus Tree Navigation

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podcat

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As Wednesday is upon us so is a new dev diary! Next week we will be back with more espionage, but today is about a small surprise patch as well as improved Focus tree navigation.

1.8 ‘Fork’
Fork you say? I thought you said 1.8 was going to be Husky? Due to technical requirements having to do with updating to the new paradox launcher we had to jump a big number other than going to 1.7.2 like we had planned. This means that 1.9 will instead be Husky which is the big update coming together with La Resistance.

Lets jump straight into the changelog (I know you all skipped straight to here anyway, you can read the stuff above later):
Code:
################################################################
########               Patch 1.8.0 "Fork"               ########
################################################################

##################################
# Feature & General
##################################
- Added new Launcher
- Added "/mute <user name>" and "/unmute <user name>" chat commands


##################################
# Balance
##################################
- Reduced number of destroyers needed to cover convoy routes from 1 destroyer per 5 convoys to 1 destroyer per 10 convoys
- Convoys can no longer detect convoys as that just drags down the average detection when escorted
- The amount of convoys in a sub battle is now based on the length of the route, so longer = fewer in a battle
- Reduced total possible torpedo reveal chance reduction to 60% from 70% by reducing wolfpack by 5% and commander trait by 5%
- Slightly reduced sub reveal chance when firing torpedos to account for convoys no longer contributing to detection averages
- Slightly reduced passive sub reveal chance in combat to account for convoys no longer contributing to detection averages
- Added 2 sub detection to radar 4 to make t4 subs not so hard to detect when matched up against modern destroyers
- Aluminium Company of Canada focus now gets an additional 14 Aluminium
- upgraded t4 radar to have sub detection from 10 to 14
- upgraded t3 radar to have sub detection from 5 to 6
- increased IC cost for t3 sub hull from 270 to 320
- increased IC cost for t4 sub hull from 300 to 450
- increased IC cost for cruiser sub hull from 370 to 390
- increased number of convoys covered by each destroyer on escort from 10 to 12
- Lowered t3 and t4 submarine torpedo damage from 23 to 22 and 30 to 28 respectively
- slightly increased the speed penalty on depth charges


##################################
# Bugfix
##################################
- Fixed a civil war revolter not getting correct focus tree
- Fixed escaping or sunk convoys from inadvertently affecting damage calculations for the remaining convoys.
- Fixed Diminishing Returns now applying to party popularity changes.
- Fixed lend-lease sender having its convoy sunk instead of the receiver in naval combats
- Prevented subjects from giving units to their overlord as part of a request for expeditionary forces if those units are volunteers or expeditionaries from another country.


##################################
# UI & Database
##################################
- The open music player button in settings now has proper size
- Music Player now has proper spelling in tooltip/settings button
- Fixes for Japanese various names (ships, divisions etc).
- Fixed full name for Canadian general Percival John Montague.


##################################
# Modding
##################################
- Added define to allow scaling of ship part of sub detection inside combats
- Enabled some console commands that had previously been developer-only but which did not really need to be locked.
    - add_mines
    - release (country)
    - debug (toggle miscellaneous in-game debug utilities)
    - debug_smooth (toggle within-game-tick frame rendering)
    - instant_prepare (division preparation)
    - reload_textures
    - tag_color (set country color)


##################################
# Stability & Performance
##################################
- Fixed a crash when removing certain unit leader traits.
- Added checks to prevent CTD in cases where AI had sent invalid expeditionary forces
- Optimized game rule checks by finding the game rule in the game rule database more efficiently.
- Prevented a crash if a script tries to make a non-existing country declare war on another country.
- Fixed CTD on invalid set_politics usage by failing to set ruling_party, made it write an error instead.
- Fixed pointer truncation in 64bits in ProtectedMemoryAllocate
- Fixed crash reporter to correctly indicate if the program is built for a 64-bit architecture.
- Fixed a CTD related to expeditionary forces that could lock in saves
- Fixed game crashing in weird ways if a mod tries reusing an id

To summarize, the big points here are: Stability, submarine balance and a new launcher

Submarine balance
Later tier 3 and 4 subs were simply too good compared to destroyers designed to hunt them. They have been nerfed a bit and increased in cost and destroyer upgrades improved. Large empires should now also have a bit easier time as we better control the amount of convoys in each battle and have fixed a bug where convoys would actively hurt the sub detection abilities of their escorts making it really tough in big battles.

upload_2019-11-13_11-48-15.png


New launcher
We, much like Imperator, EU4 and Stellaris have now also moved to the new launcher.
Since wargamers are a traditional bunch you might be asking why a new launcher is happening. There are several reasons:
  • Platform independence. We want to be able to exist on multiple platforms eventually and the current one is limited and not really capable of doing it very well.
  • The old one is really limited in how we can communicate with you. Now we can link to multiple news post for example.
  • It frees up the dev team (us). We never really had the time to work on the launcher and as the place setting up mods and such there have been a ton of requests for features (such as mod groupings and presets) that we just never have the time to do. With a dedicated team working on a unified launcher across pdx games they will have more time for stuff like this and we can worry about the game itself. I have great hopes for lots of cool improvements in the future and make sure to let them know in comments what kind of features you would like to see.
  • We got a neat continue button now directly in launcher so you can save time getting back on your previous session ;)
image (35).png


Go here to read details about the launcher changes and what the mean for modders and player.
The tl;dr for players though is that you need to start the game, run it to the main menu and then quit and restart. Without this your mods wont show up. This will clean up old mod configuration and prep everything. Mods will still show out of date until modders have updated the supported version, but we haven't made any changes that will break them so 1.7.1 mods should still be ok, despite them saying they arent - so no panic ;) If you do have issues please post about them in the above linked thread about the launcher rather in here (its still cool to discuss the launcher here though).

If you are interested in more details and plans for the launcher you can read all about it here in a post from the launcher team .

The patch itself releases later today (late afternoon). That is all about the patch, lets move on to highlight some neat stuff coming in 1.9 'Husky'...

Focus Tree Navigation
As our focus trees have gotten larger finding things in them or simply exploring them has gotten harder. To solve this we are adding several things to the national focus screen (btw UI here is still a bit WIP and may change)
  • Zoom - You can now zoom in and out to the mouse pointer much like on the map. Its a nice way to get around on big trees (*squints at the spanish focus tree*)
  • Filters - toggling various filters can let you easily spot where industry is located, or things related to particular national spirits you are trying to get rid of or modify. These are tagged manually on focuses so its something modders will be able to use also.
  • Free Search - on top of filters we also have full free search. It goes through tooltips automatically and picks out focuses. This is a more advanced and powerful version of Filters and quite nice for finding specific things fast when you know what you are looking for.
upload_2019-11-13_11-42-58.png

This is me searching for industry related stuff in the Chinese tree. It also shows some of our default filters on the right. Several nations have special filters to help highlight specific mechanics. So China has "Inflation" as a filter, the commonwealth nations have a filter to help spot affecting independence etc. We hope this is going to make getting into new focus trees a lot easier!
Here is an example of zooming out about half way on China:
upload_2019-11-13_11-45-35.png

If I place my mouse pointer somewhere I can still see tooltips and zooming will zoom to the cursor.


See you all next week for another diary!
 
Last edited:

podcat

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I found the changes to the focus tree amazing and the new launcher was wonderful. Congratulations, you did a great job <3

Anyway, sorry for the question, but when will you show the Portuguese focus tree?

Its going to be a while, we are still putting it together.


We have done some stuff with ahead of time fixes but it is comign in 1.9. If stuff isnt in the list we havent fixed it for this build. The goal was a small patch.

Fix air vols stopping naval combat please.
Whats an air vole? some form of flighty rodent?
 

podcat

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Make a historical filter!
Just a filter is doable but not very useful as it doesnt show order etc so we decided to leave it until we have support for that kind of stuff. Its on our radar tho, just not sure exactly when

Not sure if you are joking, in case you are not: air vole = air volunteers

First I hear of this bug, if you can point me to a report with more info that would be cool

Looking forward to seeing how the new balance with submarines works out. Please correct me if I'm wrong, but I always get the sense that these 'smaller' patches are few and far in between and I can't help but wonder why that is. Could you maybe shed some light on that for someone like me who has little to no knowledge of/experience with producing and patching games? I always find it peculiar that we often have to wait until the 'big' patch for balance changes etcetera whereas those changes may have very little to do (on the face of it) with the theme of that patch/DLC. Again, please correct me if I'm wrong about this. I might just have gotten it into my head that these smaller patches are few and far in between for some unknown reason.

The main reason is that its a fairly involved process to do a patch involving a lot of people, and we dont have time to balance multiple games at once. In our internal dev version everything is really different because of resistance and garrison changes, so this kind of stuff needs to be done in isolation. HOI4 is a different animal than a lot of the other paradox games where doing balance changes will actually potentially break the flow of the game completely so we cant just toss things in on feel and see how it goes. I think there are ways we can have more patches but its tricky. We are usually fully focused on the DLC + big update we are doing after we release post-release patches that even doing something like this is quite disruptive. So it basically comes down to priorities on the stuff that needs to be fixed. In this case we took some time to pick safe fixes and balance stuff because we already needed to do a launcher update, and thus needed to go through all the processes anyways. We just dont have the infrastructure and manpower to keep on top of 2 versions of a game as complex as HOI at the same time. So I think what we got is a decent compromise. Perhaps we can try other stuff and rely more on open betas, but even there its tricky to deal with multiple versions.
 
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podcat

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What was exactly the rationale for updating the launcher in isolation like this?
Seems rather odd that it couldn't wait for Husky, was it a requirement from above?

Given that when 1.9 comes modders are going to have to do a bunch of stuff to make their mods up to date we didnt want to complicate stuff by also have launcher changes happen then, especially since mods will be backwards compatible right now technically, despite saying they are old, while for 1.9 they will need actual updates. So this should ensure things overall go much smoother
 

Archangel85

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On this topic, I already asked the CEO in the quarterly Interim Report, but she said this would be solely the teams decisions:
Why don't you have more manpower?

On PDXcon you where quite happy with the 2 Millions copies sold, and with the really high player count, DLCs also prorably sell quite well.

How is it, that you team is still quite small? It seems you would need double the teamsize in every department (Contentdesigner, coder, internal QA).

Is it so hard to find competant staff who wants to move to Stockholm? Maybe rise the pay to make it more attractive then. ;)

The team is actually growing at the moment, so we are bulking up. But just doubling the teamsize wouldn't by itself solve this problem. We would have to completely restructure our development and release process. It's not impossible to do, but it requires some measure of planning and thought rather than just hiring a bunch of people.

Personally I think having a permanent open beta like we do after major releases would help a lot actually, but @podcat makes that call.
 

podcat

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Could you clarify this change? I'm not sure I'm getting it. Also, what is the basis for it?
so before generally the longer a route the more convoys would be needed. But just because you hit a specific part of that line shouldnt mean that you get all of them in a big battle. So the idea is that on a long route they would spread out, so we limit size of each combat by route length so you dont magically catch all the US convoys headign to UK in one go etc just because its a long route
 

podcat

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Will filters be done automatically or will modders have to set each focus's tag manually?
you need to script in specific stuff, but the free search will autoamtically pick from tooltips. this is for 1.9 tho not today
 

podcat

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Air volunteers, stop naval combat after 1 hour if they are set on naval strike (cas, tacticals, naval bombers)
so the mission turns off? or they dont do anything measurable after an hour?
 

podcat

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Could there be a 'known of' bugs list.
That would be the Bug Reports sub forum. If a thread has a comment it definitly is in our internal DB. We dont check it at all times though. More around releases.
 

podcat

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And EAI doesn't cheat
The last times I have checked it for integrating stuff there have been a bunch of cheating things in it and its tricky to separate out fixes from it to integrate for this reason unfortunately
 

podcat

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Still no Fix for Naval Fighters on CVs beeing useless and dont protect your ships good enough, even when having absolute fighter overweight in the naval batte.Current Meta is full Naval Bombers on CVs without any fighters.
Possible Fix: Give Naval Fighters more interruption value or fix the interruption mechanic, as the values in the files seems okayish and high.

Last I looked at this in detail was around MTG release and then a 50/50 split always beat pure NAV. Perhaps something changed. Could you do a proper bug report in the bug report forum, ping me and include some save where you set things up so its easy to verify that its this way and I will take a look.