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    Real Strategy Requires Cunning
Jan 27, 2005
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Hearts of Iron II is a game that lends itself very well to modding, primarily through being rather easily able to make and alter events, scenarios and even graphics. Paradox did a great job with the pictures of hundreds, if not thousands of leaders, ministers, tech-teams and unit portraits. The community continues with the job, and we now have several contributions that raise the quality. Leaders can now come in colors, unit icons can convey the differences in units more thematically and backgrouns can instill the feel of a nation. The aim of this thread is to shine a light at the possibilities that are out there for enhancing the graphics, or rather artwork really, in HoI2.

Examples
(Click images to enlarge)
Default Graphics


The Graphics I use


First things first
Get the Generic Mod Swap Utility. Put it into your HoI2 folder and run it once. It will create a folder named "mods". Inside that you can create additional folders (which will be the names of your mods) and put the different mods into order. Activating any mod with the utility will copy over all the files from the respective mods folder, and take a backup of the original data. Very usefull. Over to the mods then...

GIP or DMP?
There are two major distinct "complete overhaul" mods out there. The Graphical Improvement Project and Design Mod Project . Both of these will replace much of the default black-and-white photos of ministers, leaders, tech-teams and more. I personally prefer GIP (which uses real-life photos for everything) over DMP (which has drawings for tech-teams, combat events, unit pictures and etc, but real ones for leaders/ministers). DMP comes in many packages which also changes map-colors, unit icons and more. What I do is to only use the pictures of leaders and ministers from DMP (by downloading only the packs with those pictures and taking them out from gfx/interface/pics), and everything else from GIP. This gives me color photos of pretty much every leader of the major powers (where DMP has a more complete coverage), but also the IMO higher quality of GIP (but which has not gotten to as many leaders).

I have also started doing some colorizing myself (it`s actually quite easy I found out). I hope they can be included in GIP in the future, but until the next official release of GIP, I provide you with my addition as an add-on. This first release includes a couple of chinese leaders, and a few norwegian ones. Get it here: Kinseeks GIP add-on 0.2

Preview of some of my work:


Improving Map Colors
I didn`t really notice the slight shortcoming at first; but Atruejedi showed that by editing some palette settings or somesuch, the colors can be more vivid and pleasing to the eye. His Sexxicolors mod will do just that. But as much as I feel the Soviet Union has to be red, the US has to be blue. In Sexxicolors Atruejedi opted for the US to be green, which I didn`t fancy. So I changed it to blue. Get my edited version here.

Changing unit icons
It is possible for each division, flotilla and air unit in the game to have its own icon, varying between country and model. Modders out there have greatly added these icons; so now the icon of a chinese militia will differ from a us marine. I think there are two "packs" that stand out here Cpack's Icons and Scytth & Kristoff`s. Both are very high quality. They differ in that Cpack is portrayed from the side in 2d you could say, and describes just the unit while also adding a nice flag, while Scytth & Kristoff`s puts them in a dramatic setting. I personally use Cpacks, but a coin toss could easily convince me to use Scytth & Kristoff`s. I will also give honorable mention to Ostheims German Icons though. These, while sadly being limited only to the Germans, are of extremely high quality. They should go well with Scytth & Kristoff`s. So again; combining stuff is perfectly recommendable to do.

Examples
Cpack______________Scytth & Kristoff_____Ostheim
 
Last edited:
Jan 27, 2005
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What about the top-bar, sidebar and background?
GIP does alter these, but long time ago I discovered the works of Erich. Sadly both he and his works seems to have vanished to depths of the internet. But I managed to store some of his stash. What I like is his thematic approach. Every background for instance is of a map, and the national flag imposed over it. This gives unique color compositions for each nation, and also give me a great nationalistic feeling, a key point in the experience of HoI2 :). Download the pack here.

Examples



New Sprites?
DMP gives you several new ones, but they don`t quite fit my personal tastes, I`ll do recommend the ones made by Bebro.

Bebro`s Land units
Bebro`s Naval Units
Bebro`s Air Units
Bebro`s Minor Axis Units

Example


You also have the HoI2 Sprites Compendium by Rodico Stak, combining the aforementioned sprites with others, such as ones from HoI1 and other custom made ones.

New Air Mission Icons
Until it was pointed out to me, I thought there was only one icon for all the Air Missions, basically an explosion with "something" in it. ZykloNuk made a very nice mod which you can download here.


0.1 is the Vanilla, while the rest you can choose from. I like #3.

Any "finishing touches"?
Yes. The icons for supply, HQ-presence and stuff could use some color. Don`t remember where I got this, but thanks to who made them anyways. Get it here

I hope this thread can continue with more suggestions on what to use; which I am open to. I will also suggest the Graphics and Sprites section over at www.Stonyroad.de as a great resource for finding new stuff.
 
Last edited:

Lord Finnish

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Really nice..!

Really enlightning!
 

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Well, I would like to suggest the humbly kept secret of BeBro's of his excellent DD Interface Mod. I use it and have modified it, and it's as excellent as ever. BeBro, you shouldn't keep it a secret! :p

EDIT: Oops, I actually see it in your sig! :D
 

Lord Finnish

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I really like that Japanese fullscreen and German sidebar, and that China leaderpack made my China more beautiful:)
 

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Kinseek, you are god.

EDIT:
In addition, I reccomend this thread be stickied.
 
Last edited:

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TheCrimsonMajor said:
Kinseek, you are god.

EDIT:
In addition, I reccomend this thread be stickied.


I would agree!
 

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So how do I go about installing GIP, Scythe & Kristoff and Ostheims' mods?

DO I unpack it in the MODS folder of the JSGME and activate the mod that way?
 
Jan 27, 2005
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That is what I do at least. To elaborate: under HoI2/Mods you create another folder called say GIP. Under that you place the folder as if you had simply unzipped it to HoI2. You might for instance have noticed a folder called "GFX" and "DB" on the first level of the HoI2 folder. Then simply make sure the same is true for the HoI2/Mods/GIP folder.

And of course take a small note in what order you are activating it in. Ostheim should of course be activated after Scytth & Kristoff lest it be overwritten. JSGME will notify you when overwriting other mods.
 

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Not to toot my own horn, but those wanting hi-quality, black-and-white replacement leaders for Germany should check the links in my footer. Retains the feel of the original game and fixes all issues with aspect ratios, inaccurate identifications, etc. And I worked my ass off on it too. :D

Also, second link is better tech pics for both Germany and Italy.
 

Hagar

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jbunnelle said:
Not to toot my own horn, but those wanting hi-quality, black-and-white replacement leaders for Germany should check the links in my footer. Retains the feel of the original game and fixes all issues with aspect ratios, inaccurate identifications, etc. And I worked my ass off on it too. :D

Also, second link is better tech pics for both Germany and Italy.
Damn you for inluding that Rheinmetall-Börsig tech team image... There goes my originality! :mad:

But I have to confess they look pretty good, and it seems we're on the same level regarding tech team images. Ah well, at least mine will mostly be in color. :D