Hi everyone and welcome back to regular weekly dev diaries (if you don't count the april fools one last week). I know you are all super excited to hear what we have been up to since Battle for the Bosporus. The answers to that are going to take a few dev diaries to cover, so I figured I would start with a timeline for you:
  • We recently released 1.10.4 to fix various multiplayer exploits going on, but seems an important case was not detected at the time so we are working on a 1.10.5 to address that soon.
  • Pdxcon is coming up in May so expect to hear some more details there.
  • The yearly anniversary is coming in June so expect some cool stuff and a patch.
  • We are however spending most of our time on the 1.11 Barbarossa update as well as the unannounced expansion that will be released together with it. That's what we will spend most of our diaries on, as well as today!

‘Barbarossa’ and the unannounced DLC will focus on the Eastern Front and the core of Hearts of Iron, which is warfare - particularly land warfare. Historically the Eastern Front was without doubt the most important front for World War II. It was the largest confrontation in history and
is where Hitler’s expansion was first stopped and pushed back signaling the eventual doom of the axis powers. There are several areas we want to improve here. Weather does not feel impactful enough, while historically it had a massive impact. Logistics currently doesn’t have much player interaction and is mostly something you have to deal with only when problems appear, and finally the combat and division meta has been stable (with an emphasis on large divisions) for a long time - something we hope we can shake up. As you can imagine, these are all things that affect the game on a deeper level and take a lot of work to get right.

Today, I’ll give you guys a bit of an overview on the supply aspect, but fair warning: it’s early days and stuff may still change here before we’re done. I’ll probably spend 3+ diaries on supply over the course of the development to cover everything, but I figured it would be nice to hear about the overarching ideas.

The old system worked by having discrete supply areas pathing back to the players capital and keeping track of the bottlenecks. To simplify a bit ;) - those bottlenecks then decided how many units could fit into areas near the front without penalties. The areas themselves were unintuitive to players and required you to check multiple mapmodes to see if you stepped over an edge etc. I do like bottleneck systems though, because feedback is usually immediate, but it suffered from not having much scaling cost as distances increased, so it was hard to use it to limit snowballing. As I mentioned it was also a system you didn't care too much about until you had problems, while historically, logistics was a vital part of planning a campaign. This led to combining the issue with another gripe of ours - that the way fronts moved in WW2 often followed important railroads, but don't really in HOI4. We came to the conclusion that we should try and make a system focused on railways and with a truck based component as a way to get more out of it when away from the rails.

1617799554638.png


In our new system, supply flows from the capital (the total amount available depends on your total industrial base) through railways, where the level of the railway acts as a bottleneck. To transport more, you need a higher level railway (or a bigger port if it goes over water) so the railways are the current bottlenecks in a way. Depending on how much supply is transported you need a certain amount of trains for the rails to perform. Trains are a new equipment type that we will dig into in a future diary (well actually, several types ;P)

An important part of railways is that they are capturable, so as you push into enemy territory you will want to make sure to hold vital railways and capture railway hubs to supply your troops. There is a conversion time here to model the fact that there was usually some repair or re-gauging that needed to happen for attackers.

1617798271066.png

1617799689604.png

Mapmodes are still quite WIP ;)

Rivers also had a huge importance on the eastern front for transport and supply so they will work essentially like basic railroads now, where you need to control both sides of their banks to use them to ship supplies around.

1617798407335.png


Supply is drawn from what we call Supply Hubs now, which are either cities, naval bases, or manually constructed stations along the rails, which have to be linked into the network. Air supply works a bit differently but we will talk about this in the future along with some other supply additions...

The flow of supply from a Hub to a division depends on the terrain/weather etc, and ideally you want to have available trucks here (which is to say, motorized equipment) to increase the amount of supply you get as well as range. Cost of trucks and trains and losses to attrition and bad weather will be a limiting factor on your logistics.

1617798787102.png


Overall, this creates a system where it's strategically sound to fight over railways, prepare for large offensives, to try and bleed each other's logistics capability and to force care when advancing in bad terrain and weather. The result is a much more fun, historical and immersive Eastern Front as well as adding a new layer of invasion planning in the rest of the world.

See you all next week for the next diary!
 
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ITA67

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I don`t think Italy is coming in this DLC. Given that 1.11 and the next DLC is focused on the Eastern Front I would assume that the countries getting a Focus tree rework will be the Soviets, Poland and Finland.
Yes, but Italy was a nation wich they take part on the Eastern Front, and the ARMIR lead by the General Messe and Itali Gariboldi.
So if Italy has a new focus tree and new generals, would be better and more realistic the Eastern Front
 
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DilberDD

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I’m very disappointed that Italy is still not getting reworked, but on the positive side this makes it more likely that Austria will be included in the Italy rework (also hoping for a Belgium rework as the other “lost” European country without a focus tree).
 
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Metz

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On a side note, what would Denmark, Sweden, and Norway be able to offer to the game if they had their own trees? Regarding populations, Denmark had around 3.5M, Sweden 6M, and Norway 2.5M. There industries are not that heavy and they don't have strong armies, air forces, or navies. Denmark also does not have much of a useful geography when it comes to defenses and Norway is too big to defend or fortify realistically. To be relevant, any of them would need to annex all of the Scandinavia as one country before Germany invades westwards in 1940. This would not be realistic to do since all three countries embrace democratic values and any swap to fascism or communism would trigger a response from powers on the opposite ideological spectrum.
 
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Spelaren

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On a side note, what would Denmark, Sweden, and Norway be able to offer to the game if they had their own trees? Regarding populations, Denmark had around 3.5M, Sweden 6M, and Norway 2.5M. There industries are not that heavy and they don't have strong armies, air forces, or navies. Denmark also does not have much of a useful geography when it comes to defenses and Norway is too big to defend or fortify realistically. To be relevant, any of them would need to annex all of the Scandinavia as one country before Germany invades westwards in 1940. This would not be realistic to do since all three countries embrace democratic values and any swap to fascism or communism would trigger a response from powers on the opposite ideological spectrum.
Denmark and Norway have sizeable weapons industries. Sweden even more so, Sweden ends up with a lot of industry (almost as much as a small major) when WW2 kicks off.
 
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Reinner

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Yes, but Italy was a nation wich they take part on the Eastern Front, and the ARMIR lead by the General Messe and Itali Gariboldi.
So if Italy has a new focus tree and new generals, would be better and more realistic the Eastern Front
You need to look at the bigger picture, almost every single Axis country fought on the Eastern Front: Germany, Italy, Hungary, Romania, Slovakia, Croatia etc.
Vichy France and Spain were sending volunteers. Finland who officialy never joined the Axis also attacked Soviet Union to reclaim the land they lost during the winter war.

PDX already stated that they want to do countries that share borders and can have much interactions with their neighbours as possible. Poland and Finland are definitely on the list along with Russia, i also expect Germany to get tweaked a bit.
 
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uleslaw

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Can we somehow lend-lease supplies? historically, that was a thing
 
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Pzt_Kami

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yes. its quite expensive because we generally want you to use cities and ports and fight for those. you also have new construction options for railways that you can draw etc
then what happened to old (actually current) infrastructure type building? I hope if infrastructures gonna still remian ,then at least their cost decreased so to make them still viable option to invest IC on them
 

General Ricot

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Yes, but Italy was a nation wich they take part on the Eastern Front, and the ARMIR lead by the General Messe and Itali Gariboldi.
So if Italy has a new focus tree and new generals, would be better and more realistic the Eastern Front
Indeed I was wrong when I said italy doesn't fit in the barbarossa theme: Italy played a very important part in the advance and in the defence of southern ucraine, and sent more than 250 000 active soldiers + more than 40 000 support personnel and 300 aircrafts, togheter with our best general Giovanni Messe; and probably influenced the war more than finland, that just sat on the leningrad line for 3 years.
 

D.Knight

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Did anyone notice the absence of the XP counters next to the Command Power? Appears to have been moved.

am i the oly one who has noticed the new button and that xp is totally gone
View attachment 701726View attachment 701727
As someone pointed out, it has been moved, but the movement and possible changes to the XP system put the recruitment screen's changes into additional context.
D38FE63B-B010-4D9B-BB1D-448B64C88862.png
You are right, Italy doesn't really fit in a barbarossa themed expansion. But if we think it on the other side of the coin, we have a supply themed dlc incoming, and in that case italy completely fits in, especially regarding the war in africa and the battles to defend supply's convoys in the mediterranean. In northern africa the main issue, that also stopped Rommel advance, was the lack of supply. In my opinion it would fit, but probably this dlc is already too fat.
Hopefully it will come in a little dlc at the end of the year like battle of the bosphorus
I presume an Italy DLC will be coming with an Air Warfare rework. It kinda fits too as the Regina Aeronautica was one of Italy's greater strengths in warfare.
 
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Hoi Neuling

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Nice, because I build up every time the Railroads (not only for Supply) for the Economy-Effects etc. too as well as the Harbors. If the Airports come too in this System, then it will be very very interessting and an Point to upgrade the Airports too.
 

andrew96

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This looks promising, always thought that weather in particular was way too overlooked in hoi4, up to this point I haven't even cared about invading Russia in winter, it barely makes a difference.
Meta change is also a potentially good thing especially in multiplayer games, but PLEASE don't just change the meta for the sake of changing the meta, if it's gonna be changed then it needs to be interesting changes, making more builds viable as opposed to basic infantry spam with 40w tanks just dominating everything else. Don't just swap out one dominant meta for another one. I think the key to this is making soft attack more viable to build around - against the AI it works fine but in multiplayer you will just get de-orgd and die.
Is it possible we will see weapons such as railway guns in this update? Most likely they'd be a sideshow more than anything, maybe giving something similar to the naval bombardment bonus on adjacent tiles, just an idea for something cool to add.
Also could we maybe get a fix for the launcher so that it doesn't take five times longer to load than the actual game if you're subscribed to a lot of steam mods?
 
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