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Game Director - Hearts of Iron
Paradox Staff
Feb 13, 2018
Greetings all, Arheo here!

For my first HoI dev diary, I’m here to introduce the Officer Corps: a collection of new features that will be included as part of No Step Back and the Barbarossa update.

For quite a while, we’ve wanted to allow for more direct specialization of military branches, as well as tying together various disparate systems such as the high command, generals, military-focused national spirits, and doctrines. To achieve step one of this process, we’re giving the Officer Corps and associated mechanics a unique national interface:
pasted image 0.png

(WIP, as usual)

Here, the empty advisor portraits at the top of the window are where you can now find your High Command and Military Theorist, and the advisor portraits below this are related to each branch Chief - they have been moved out of the political sub-window accordingly.

As well as UI location, there are further changes coming to all military advisors. Where previously, the theorist was the only advisor type that granted daily experience gain, all high command and branch chief will now generate experience appropriate to the branch they represent.

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The Advisor rank (e.g. Expert) indicates both the magnitude of their modifier bonus, and the daily experience you will receive.

We’re also experimenting with a split political/command power costs to gate the experience ramp-up somewhat, along with some other minor changes to command power.

Behind the scenes, we’ve made a host of changes to the advisor, spirits, and commander systems. Where previously, if we wanted to create a national spirit related to having a certain character in your government, it would be entirely unrelated to having an advisor with the same name, masquerading as the same person - likewise for commanders and advisors masquerading as the same person. This has changed. These are (for the most part) now controlled by ‘characters’. This has pretty sweeping connotations for our internal content designers, as well as modders, but importantly also allows us to bring the following new system to the No Step Back release:

Advisor Promotion

The introduction of a more connected Officer Corps felt like the perfect time to bring more of a connection to the Generals and Field Marshals that oversee your active forces, and the various military offices that advise your government.

In No Step Back, Generals, Admirals or Field Marshals can be assigned an advisory desk duty in addition to their status as a field commander. This will effectively add the character as a new advisor to your roster.

The type of advisor available to you is dependent on the skill level and traits of the commander you’re ‘promoting’ (not everyone likes desk duty ;) ), as you can see in the highly WIP interface below:

pasted image 0 (1).png

Here, Herr Hell can be converted to an Entrenchment specialist as he possesses the Engineer trait, and has skill level 5. Currently, both Military High Command and branch Chief roles are available.


Experience generation in general has been weighted and balanced in order to achieve a more gradual switch from peacetime generation (a strong cadre of advisors, and unit training), through to wartime. Experience generation from combat and battles has been reduced fairly significantly to account for this, as well as capped (separately from other sources). Overall, experience generation will be consistently higher than in previous versions - this was done both to mitigate the introduction of the tank designer (and thereby increased costs), and to account for the other new ways in which you are now able to spend experience, which we shall cover below.

The eagle-eyed amongst you noticed in a previous diary that the doctrine branches had been removed from the technology window - they can now be accessed from the officer corps interface, and will function somewhat differently to before. Doctrines will be unlocked directly by spending branch experience, which can still be affected by instanced cost modifiers often found in focus trees and events.

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(There have been no major structural changes to doctrine layouts)

There are, in addition to the above, several new and exciting things that branch experience will be used for in NSB, some of which are handily teased in the first screenshot of this diary. Alas, we will be covering what those are and how they might affect your gameplay in a future DD.

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So the "appointing field commanders as advisors" part is the only thing of this that is DLC exclusive?
Its a bit more than that. It will get clearer when we present the whole thing :)

Will doctrines themselves be changed? Can we expect a rebalancing of some doctrines in order to make them more viable? As part of shaking the meta which is one of the goals of this DLC, some doctrines and branches remain not really good and you almost never pick them.
We currently dont have any plans for a big change to doctrine balance, which doesnt mean we might not tweak a few numbers if we think its needed.

Is there a way to read the Dev Diaries in the old format or is this "Dev Diary Post" now the only way to see them?
What do you dislike about the new format?
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So correct me if I’m wrong, but doctrine research will be instant as far as I can see from the last screenshot?
enabling will be, but of course it takes time to accumulate the XP needed for doing the changes

I think 100 CP is a tad too high, maybe 75 or 60 would be more fitting imho?
remember that there is generally more XP now and more ways to set up to get more
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Why are some of the (supposedly) pictures shown as some gibberish text?
ENIGMA ENCRYPTED to divide true fans from regular people (true fans can do rotary cyphers subconsiously) ;D

should be fixed now for everyone, sorry for the muckup
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Great work, I'm looking forward to playing these changes. But I didn't understand the part I quote, can you elaborate more, please? A national spirit related to a character in the government?
its "dev talk" a bit. Advisors were previously basically the same as a spirit under the hood
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Do you mean there are more ways to gain command power? Because that is what's shown in the screen as a cost for advisors. Most countries have a max of 100cp and an advisor costs all of that. You will also be unable to get advisors while having an active attaché, which is most of the time. Either in Spain or China or one of my allies during the great war.

Uh, he meant by Command Power.

Yeah, i like the new system already but it would be taxing to get the advisors since Germany and almost all of minor nations IIRC didn't have bonus amount of CP like Netherlands, USA, UK, Nationalist China, and a few more nations did.
Yeah sorry cant brain today ;D

numbers are always subject to change. Often when we show stuff like this its just random stuff pulled from thin air altho these have had some testing
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Will there be changes to doctrine balance at all? Will any of the individual doctrine choinces get number tweaks or changes?

We may be looking into some general balance tweaks.

Do you mean there are more ways to gain command power? Because that is what's shown in the screen as a cost for advisors. Most countries have a max of 100cp and an advisor costs all of that. You will also be unable to get advisors while having an active attaché, which is most of the time. Either in Spain or China or one of my allies during the great war.

There are indeed. The CP cap is now also increased to 200 by default, and the gain is now flat, rather than related to the current maximum.
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Will Field Commanders being assigned to desk duty have a harder time doing both jobs? Or will it still be abstracted that they can do both at the same time?
Currently the latter. This is subject to change.
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Is Wojtek any good in a desk job?

Try giving a bear a mountain of paperwork and let me know how it goes.

How come air has 2 slots instead of 3?

We haven't covered what these are for yet :)

This is so cool... I’ve wanted this for some time. You can roleplay the key generals and admirals in your forces.

1. If they are not skill level 5, what can they be assigned as?

2. Is it possible to skill a general up pre war for a desk job or are you stuck using the default ranks at game start?

3. Not sure about those big icons on the officers tab but the rest is great. I like the boons and bonuses shown clear.

1. Nothing

2. No, you'll still have access to the predefined advisors as before tho. The conversion system is intended to represent the utilization of contemporary field learnings, not ability at pushing papers. It feels more relevant to tie this directly to levels gained in active duty.
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You forgot to mention it is also the most casualty producing weapon system when compared to say small arms, tanks, or any other weapon system.

That is surely true, and I mention it all the time in connection with all warfare since the 19th century. There are other doctrines further down the tree that simulate this reality as well. I was referring to the notion that casualties alone do not generally force an enemy to cede ground nor produce victory. America learned this in Vietnam, among other places. Fire combined with shock, and offensive maneuver putting you astride the enemy's lines of communication, though...
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