HOI4 Dev Diary - 1.5.2 Update #2 and Modding Goodies

HOI4 Dev Diary - 1.5.2 Update #2 and Modding Goodies

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podcat

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Hi everyone welcome back to another update on our post-release work on Cornflakes and Waking the Tiger.

1.5.2 Patch
The path has now been in beta for a bit and also updated. If you are brave and want to try it early to help us find problems you can go here for how to do so. Go there to check out the current changelog, but I am going to cover some stuff here too. Note that all these things are not yet in the patch, but will appear later today when the beta gets updated.

Air Balance and Changes
Based on feedback, primarily from the MP community we decided to do several changes related to the air war.
  • Planes on missions now have to gain efficiency over time. Strategic bombers are slower than smaller planes when it comes to this. This was done to avoid ping-ponging and terrible microing in multiplayer where players would keep switching their bombers around to stop them from being caught. It also simply makes sense that it takes some time after a move to get organized.
upload_2018-3-28_15-28-28.png

  • Division anti air now reduces damage to the division caused by close air support attacks, in proportion to the AA's ability to shoot down planes. This should now make divisional AA more helpful against direct attacks as well:
upload_2018-3-28_14-14-28.png

  • We now allow a bigger bonus from close air support supporting a combat, while the penalty to defense to the enemy from pure air superiority has been reduced. The speed penalty from enemy air superiority has also been reduced as it was a little excessive. We hope these things together will incentivize CAS over fighter spam a bit.
  • Strategic Bombers now only give 0.01 air superiority to make it clear thats not really their job ;)
  • The last 3 levels of radar tech will now improve hit chance for static AA guns while unlocking new AA equipment will increase their damage and all their intermediary techs will increase the protection from AA on buildings in the area. We hope this will make the techs nicer to get and help in late game defense vs bombers.
Nukes and Surrender
We have fixed a couple of things with nukes. They should now work more reliably and hurt the targets war support depending on target. The target selection is now a bit more flexible, before you had to hit specifically the VP province, but now the state is enough for things to work out as expected. In addition a nations surrender limit will be lowered when at low war support (below 50%). It scales from 0 to -30%. That means nuking will again make nations more likely to surrender, but also have other negative effects before that point.

Manchukuo
We felt the Manchukuo independence path was a little heavy handed with bonuses so it has been reworked. We basically removed most of the factories you get from focuses. Instead you get a decision after taking over the railroads to build up to 4 civilian factories. You can also solve the bandit problem by recruiting them but that means you have to endure raids for a while until you get the focus to bolster nationalism. In the Manchu branch you get to create underground gun shops which make infantry equipment massively cheaper but also reduce its reliability by a huge amount. In the 5 people branch you can raise the Manchu banners, which are large divisions with artillery support. Finally, purging the General Affairs Council lets you spend CP to prepare to seize Japanese arms depots which gives you guns and the Japanese a negative modifier for fighting against your troops.

upload_2018-3-28_14-18-20.png


Game start speedup
Nobody likes to wait around, particularly not devs who have to start the game many many times during a day so to help with this we now do some caching during startup that should help speed up the process after the first time you run it.

Other stuff
We are still going to add some more things before the patch is done. MEFO bills for example are currently undergoing balancing work.

We also have a really cool thing for modders, but I'll let @shultays show it off for you:

Hello everyone, shultays here. I am a programmer in HoI4 team. Today I will be introducing some new cool features/tools that we introduced with our newest patch.

Scripted GUIs

That is a feature we solely developed for our modders. This new tool will enable modders to create their own GUIs (or attach their GUIs to existing ones) and attach scripts/triggers to GUI elements in those GUIs. Here are some gifs that show what you can mod in to game now.

1.gif

2.gif

3.gif

4.gif

5.gif


Everything on that gifs are modded in to the game. Here are some features that this example mod adds:

Code:
- Fuhrer Mana, a new resource for Germany
- A spell system that uses Fuhrer mana as a resource
    - You can use spells targeted on your country by clicking Fuhrer mana resource
    - You can use targeted spells on enemy countries by clicking them
    - You can use targeted spells on your own states by clicking them
- A psuedo-focus system works independent of existing one that can boost your Fuhrer mana production
- A way to boost your research by consuming Fuhrer mana
- A basic AI that can make use of Fuhrer mana
If you want to try this mod, you can download it from Steam Workshop using this link or just download the mod attached in this post and extract it to your mod folder (under \Documents\Paradox Interactive\Hearts of Iron IV\mod). I also added a small cheat, right clicking on Fuhrer mana resource will give you free Fuhrer mana.

Here is a list of things you can do using scripted GUIs

Code:
- Create GUIs that will be visible when a certain trigger is true (for example in first gif, the player clicks on resource to pop up a new GUI) and/or when player selects a country/state (second and third gifs shows an example to this)
- By default this GUIs are not attached to an existing GUI (like first three gifs) but you can also attach them to existing GUI elements (5th gif has a scripted GUI attached to national focus tree)
- Attach effects to buttons in scripted GUIs, which will be called when player clicks, right clicks on them. You can also attach different effects while user is holding ctrl/alt/shift while left or right clicking
- Attach triggers to buttons that will disable them (for example spells are disabled when you are out of mana)
- Attach triggers to buttons/icons/texts to make them visible/hidden with certain conditions (disable research button is only visible when you actually enabled it)
- Use scripted localization in your texts, tooltips, button texts etc. You can also display description of effects you attached in tooltips
- A score based AI system that will evaluate your scripted GUIs on an interval you chose and on targets that you have filtered (for targeted scripted GUIs, like 'meteor swarm' spell GUI) and simulate clicking on buttons on the order of scores you have given to them.
- It will be available on multiplayer as well!
I created a tutorial on how to use this new system, which can be found on our modding forum following this link. It gives you a much more indepth on how you you can implement this features.

If you have question, please tag @shultays and ask away!

Reloadable databases
This feature was always there, but it was hard to use for our modders. In our development branch, most commonly databases (some folders under common, gui files, yml files etc) are reloadable and automatically reloads when you make an edit on them. After 1.5.2., you can also enable same functionality on our release builds by adding following launch command

-debug

After that game will auto reload the database that contains the files you edited. Here is the list of all reloadable stuff:

Code:
- events
- decisions
- traits
- ai_strategy
- ai_strategy_plans
- on_actions
- scripted_effects
- scripted_triggers
- scripted_localisation
- scripted_guis
- defines
- some gui files
- yml files
Some of them have limitations, so if you are encountering some weird issues I suggest closing and relaunching the game, but otherwise they should work just fine. We are constantly trying to improve this list.

If you want to disable this feature for some reason but keep the other -debug features, you can add -nofilewatcher to launch options.

So that is all from me for now. From now on I will try to be more active at modding forums and write a couple more tutorials. So see you there!

While we are on the topic of modding we need to talk about dependencies. Sometimes you will want your mod to depend on other mods, and also require a certain loading order. Mods will usually load in alphabetical order of their file names (so the mod last in the list will overwrite the earlier). But some things may affect this so if you need a certain load order and be clear that you have dependencies this needs to be specified by including its full name in the .mod file under "dependencies". There have been bug reports etc about this, probably because we didn't explain properly how it works. The wiki page has been updated, here but essentially this is how to do it:
Code:
name="testmodB"
path="mod/testmodb/"

# this guarantees we load testmodA first before our testmodB is loaded
dependencies= {
   "testmodA"
}
supported_version="1.5.2"
See you next week!
 

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Mar 21, 2018
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great news, but not sure even more CAS bonuses are needed, i think they are already overpowered
 

Denkt

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What about fighters vs heavy fighters. There have been quite a discussion about this subject lately.

Strategic Bombers now only give 0.01 air superiority to make it clear thats not really their job ;)
Pretty fun while it lasted as you could use them to get airsuperiority in the eastern front as the allies;)

Division anti air now reduces damage to the division caused by close air support attacks, in proportion to the AA's ability to shoot down planes. This should now make divisional AA more helpful against direct attacks as well:
Any plans to do something similar to naval battles?
 
Mar 21, 2018
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hey @podcat good about nukes but can you also see about making rockets better too, they don't do enough infra damage to warrant the investment really

also i don't think female aces are referred to as women, unless that was changed recently? not a big thing but maybe something to add to your list, i think they are worded the same as men
 

Alex_brunius

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great news, but not sure even more CAS bonuses are needed, i think they are already overpowered
I'm not sure I would say it's overall a bonus to CAS seeing how the AA now can reduce the damage they do ( and by the looks of the screenshot by quite a significant margin ).

But it should be an overall bonus to what CAS historically could do, which is work as a force multiplier to support your divisions in combat indirectly instead of doing massive direct damage.
 

bitmode

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Strategic Bombers now only give 0.01 air superiority to make it clear thats not really their job ;)
"Not really their job" equals 99% penalty? Ok.

we now do some caching during startup
First drag and drop and now this! ;)

Edit: seems people don't like sarcasm around here
 
Last edited:

Liquid Ghost

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Division anti air now reduces damage to the division caused by close air support attacks, in proportion to the AA's ability to shoot down planes. This should now make divisional AA more helpful against direct attacks as well
Nice.
 

Zarathustra_the

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OMG
you gave me everythingI have begged for for years!
 

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Game start speedup
Nobody likes to wait around, particularly not devs who have to start the game many many times during a day so to help with this we now do some caching during startup that should help speed up the process after the first time you run it.
I don't understand how this is meant.
Could you please explain what is cached?
Every Button, that is clicked by the player and on which date until 1939?
 
Mar 21, 2018
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also i think you over-nerfed grand battle plan doctrine and artillery
 

Macke11

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This scripted GUI looks like it could be gold for modders. I'm certainly looking forward to its implementation! Thanks a lot to the HoI IV team!:)
 

Constans

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All for extra (intuitive) layers to the air war. Making AA more useful and reducing the effect of Air Superiority is nice, as well as the benefits of making wings take time to build efficiency.

I wonder though if it would be smart to add another layer to air superiority based off the real life definitions:

Air Supremacy big bonus (similar to old) when you have > 85% of superiority in the zone.

Air Superiority smaller bonus when you have > 55% of superiority in a zone.

Air Parity no bonus when you have between 45-55% superiority in a zone.

This would make it so nations that can't quite compete in the air war still have an impetus to fly their planes, as keeping the enemy to only "Superiority" rather than "Supremacy" could be a big help. As it is there's no reason to fly if you can't get that 51% superiority
 

Meglok

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Excellent improvements, keep on chugging them out!
 

podcat

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Any plans to do something similar to naval battles?
yes, but not for 1.5.2 its a much larger change needed there

I don't understand how this is meant.
Could you please explain what is cached?
Every Button, that is clicked by the player and on which date until 1939?
No, its calculations that are basically always the same during startup for creating the map etc
 
Mar 21, 2018
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is it intended that normal arty is 24 > 12 but rocket arty is still 24?
 

safe-keeper

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I can't wait to put that sweet, sweet Führer mana into use come 1.5.2 :D .

s7-8e9dbbfd8f3528e831bcd58b9da99754.jpg


Actually, my biggest "PDX dream" is that they one day make a fantasy game combining for example Dominions' approach with their Clausewitz grand strategy concept :p .
 

General Apocalypse

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"Not really their job" equals 99% penalty? Ok.
Strategic bombers are incapable of hunting down any type of targets. A B - 25 has strong frontal armaments but it would take an elite crew , tons of luck and unlimited fuel to get it behind a transport plant to shoot that down. It would be far more efficient to tow AAA with horses than to use strategic bombers to rule the sky.

Not to mention that the newer jet versions were completely devoid of any AA offensive capabilities.