HoI4 DevDiary - Tank Designer

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pro.gamer.69

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Will the research time will be reduced for the technologies ?

As i understand, we will have to research more things such as AT canon to make Heavy tanks , which is never reaearched in my germany game for example, because i don't use them.
I think that since we won't have to research doctrine anymore it shouldn't be too much of a challenge to do.
 

goodcigar

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Will this system have zimmerite, snorkel, side shirt, night vision systems, external fuel tanks and guided missiles that we can add to our tank designs?
I hope so. But 4 slots isn't enough to make historical Tanks. Just like 5 Support Companies isn't enough to make historical Divisions.
 

wagnerleung0079

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Hope the dev would read this thread, find something useful from the players' suggestions, and implant it to the tank designer.
 

emperorgomer

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Yeah sorry but I really don't see the point in a tank designer, I'm 98% certain that this will break the game and require six months of patching to rebalance. So now the AI will fumble around with designs and the players will cheese it.
 

Harin

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Yeah sorry but I really don't see the point in a tank designer, I'm 98% certain that this will break the game and require six months of patching to rebalance. So now the AI will fumble around with designs and the players will cheese it.
Your concern is warranted, of course, but it is probably an issue the developers are well aware of and are working to avoid. Since this is not their first designer, the chance of pulling it off is better than with the ship designer.
 

Takao_01

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It is likely that with the experience of the first designer in MtG, this one will be at least balanced on start.
 

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It is likely that with the experience of the first designer in MtG, this one will be at least balanced on start.

I do wonder what "balanced" will look like.

When players say that it will/will not be balanced, do they just mean whether the AI can use it effectively? Or are they wanting to see historical designs be more effective than non-historical designs? Or do they want something else.

I'll give an example from MtG.

After it was patched (the speed zero BBs were finally gone), some players complained that the game wasn't balanced properly for Germany because you couldn't get the Bismark out in time for its historical actions. I think proceeded to show that you could get a Bismark out in the water in time with 1940 techs across the board by choosing NFs at the right time and putting some real effort into research.

The players then complained that my strategy still didn't answer their objections because you had to take Plan Z in 1936 and spend a ton of time burning research slots to get the techs. In other words, even though I could put the Bismark into the water with high tech equipment in time for its historical commissioning, it still wasn't good enough for some players because the trade offs to get that to happen were too much.

So, what does balanced look like? Historical date for historical commissioning of a historical ship? Historical stats and layout? Or a ship that can fulfill the historical function of the ship within the context of game mechanics? Hell, I don't know. And whatever answer I give will be different than another person's answer.
 
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I do wonder what "balanced" will look like.

When players say that it will/will not be balanced, do they just mean whether the AI can use it effectively? Or are they wanting to see historical designs be more effective than non-historical designs? Or do they want something else.

I'll give an example from MtG.

After it was patched (the speed zero BBs were finally gone), some players complained that the game wasn't balanced properly for Germany because you couldn't get the Bismark out in time for its historical actions. I think proceeded to show that you could get a Bismark out in the water in time with 1940 techs across the board by choosing NFs at the right time and putting some real effort into research.

The players then complained that my strategy still didn't answer their objections because you had to take Plan Z in 1936 and spend a ton of time burning research slots to get the techs. In other words, even though I could put the Bismark into the water with high tech equipment in time for its historical commissioning, it still wasn't good enough for some players because the trade offs to get that to happen were too much.

So, what does balanced look like? Historical date for historical commissioning of a historical ship? Historical stats and layout? Or a ship that can fulfill the historical function of the ship within the context of game mechanics? Hell, I don't know. And whatever answer I give will be different than another person's answer.

Honestly I kind of agree with their criticisms there. If you have to play a completely ahistorical Germany and compromise the rest of your military in order to build a ship that Germany historically built in the way/time they historically built it then something has gone wrong.

However personally I think that that has more to do with the lack of balancing in the research system, which desperately needs an overhaul, that means it's essentially impossible to perform the same amount of research as most majors did in real life and certainly not in the right timeframes. Given though that most players prioritise army and tank techs already and the devs have said the total number of techs should be around the same I don't think that the tank designer will suffer those same problems. If there are issues with balancing I suspect it will be something like heavy armour being too powerful and certain builds of tanks just being undefeatable.
 
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Louella

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the Bismarck

Insert 90-post largely circular argument about whether the Bismarck & Tirpitz were really modern ships at their time of launch, as opposed to oversized obsolescent designs due to the lack of data available to German shipbuilders such as the trials conducted by the US and UK on obsolete vessels and how this is not modelled within the game mechanics of HOI4 to the satisfaction of people who really know a lot about naval architecture of the early 20th century... :D
 
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Takao_01

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To be honest, I dismiss claims that the Bismarck is an overgrown Bayern design. To quote Cem Arslan from Quora:

Why is the Bismarck considered the best German naval ship when it was just a glorified dreadnought?
"If I were being a pedant, I’d start by stating that of course Bismarck is a dreadnought- as is every World War Two battleship ever built or conceived. They were all warships that had an uniform-caliber, all-big-gun armament: the only reason they were not called ‘dreadnoughts’ any more is that pretty much all battleships in the world were dreadnoughts, so keeping the term once used to help distinguish dreadnoughts and older mixed-caliber ‘pre-dreadnoughts’ in use didn’t have an awful lot of point to it.

But I’m going to assume you simply use the word to refer to World War One and early interwar warships, and answer accordingly.

There is a persistent and entirely baseless myth in amateur naval circles that Bismarck was basically an enlarged Bayern-class dreadnought: a ship that was twenty years obsolete in design, riddled with crippling weaknesses, and only presented a threat by way of being really, really big.

These people don’t appear to understand the simple concept of evolution of design.

The very proportions of the ships are grossly different. Bayern’s traditionally dreadnought inverted bow is gone, replaced with a sharply angled clipper bow on the Bismarck. With a beam %20 wider than Bayern, Bismarck is almost %40 longer, making her proportionally drastically narrower. Coupled with the lack of Bayern’s distinctive forecastle(a property inherited from their predecessor the Königs) this means that the mechanical and hydrodynamic properties of the Bismarck’s hull are drastically different.

However, it’s not the proportions that are the primary point of contention for the ‘Bismarck the overgrown Bayern’ argument. Armor scheme is usually the point that is most often raised to argue the role of Bismarck as oversized Bayerns and glorified dreadnoughts- and even that argument does not hold much water.



Bismarck’s armor scheme is quite visibly derived from Bayern, yet substantially improved. The upper belt is thinner, while the heavy slabs of 150–200mm extended belts reaching out towards the nose, a trademark feature of dreadnoughts’ armor schemes, are gone- Bismarck has a narrower 80mm extended belt towards the nose, and while she’s still quite heavily armored on the extremities for a late 1930’s battleship(which was a quite deliberate design choice) she is noticeably evolved over her predecessor.

She also has the traditionally German excellent compartmentalization, with the extensive double bottom and a rise to 22 in the number of watertight compartments from Bayern’s 17- properties also present in the Scharnhorst-class with a fairly extensive double bottom and 21 watertight compartments.

Indeed, there were three major differences between Bismarck’s armor scheme and those of most her counterparts. The triple deck arrangement, the thick upper belt, and the so-called ‘turtleback’.

It is not necessarily the triple deck arrangement or even the upper belt that receives flak from critics calling Bismarck an overgrown dreadnought. The primary point of contention is the dreadnought-esque ‘turtleback’: the main armored deck which tapers into two thick, heavily sloped plates(110mm thick, in the above schema of Bismarck) that eventually reach the main belt below the waterline. This was an old favorite of German battleship design, dating back to the Nassau, that protected the ship’s vitals especially at relatively closer ranges. The sloped decks were found not only in German battleships and battlecruisers, but were even put on cruisers of the Admiral Hipper-class. It was quite clearly present on the Bismarcks’ predecessors the Scharnhorst-class as well as the Imperial German Derfflinger-class of battlecruisers, neither of which were obviously dreadnoughts: which marks this trait not as evidence of a rehashing of Bayern’s armor scheme but as a preferred design choice of German warship designers.

Likewise, the heavy upper belt, another ‘dreadnought-esque’ trait, is clearly there because of a quite deliberate design choice. Given the significantly reduced extremity armor and a thinned upper belt, it’s difficult to argue that German designers were copying Bayern. Given that they could and did quite noticeably alter the armor scheme, the only reason they have kept the ‘dreadnought-esque’ upper belt is because they deliberately thought it a choice worth it. Now, we could argue that whether they were right in doing so- but what is quite clear is that having the beloved internal deck slope or the heavy upper belt doesn’t make Bismarck’s armor scheme that of a World War One dreadnought- just as having an all-big-gun main armament doesn’t make her(or for that matter USS Iowa) a glorified dreadnought either.

The aforementioned point is critical.

There is no denying that there are noticeable similarities between Bismarck and the Imperial German dreadnoughts of a generation past. But the majority of those similarities aren’t because one derived them directly from the latter, or because one was heavily based on the latter and many unwanted similarities were left behind as relics. These two were ships built for the same country, for the same purpose, with the same main operating area. For them to not have similarities would be impossible- but those similarities existed because they were design choices that were known to have worked, and were already favored by German design teams. And those similarities in two warships that were so noticeably different in most their qualities is quite clear proof that one isn’t a derivative of the other, but at best that Bismarck is the successor of the older design.

Why is Bismarck considered the best German ship? Because she was a bloody good ship, and it was no more a dreadnought than any of her contemporaries."

(Removed some pictures to see if I can post it now. What the fuck Paradox - why can't I use perfectly normal pictures of Bismack, Bayern, and their armor schemes?)
 
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do they just mean whether... historical designs {are} more effective than non-historical designs?
A common forum mistake is the assumption that whatever happened historically was in fact the best and most optimal choice that could have been made, whether that's a division template, production allocations, force mix, deployment of particular technologies. Real-world generals and politicians probably had _less_ effective choice than the players do, compelled by historical accident, mental inertia, groupthink, what can be "sold" politically, even before you get to just plain errors. By comparison, we're pretty free to take all sorts of paths. There's no reason to think that a completely accurate ground-up simulation would necessarily compel a reproduction of historical decisions as the optimal path. There may well have been other strategies and choices that would have worked out better.

(That approach to "what if?" analysis is one of the reasons wargames were invented by real-world militaries to investigate real concerns in the first place.)
 
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I thought wargames were instituted to confirm the prejudices of real-world generals until some genius came along and blew a cold wind up their skirts. :D

But I've never assumed that what happened historically was the "optimal" choice. I just like to take wargames and see if I can replicate historical results. If I can, then I start trying to do better than the historical results. If not, then I become obsessed with replicating the historical results. It's a sickness, sure. But it keeps me off the streets at night.

Also, why is the HMG unlocked by infantry equipment and not Support Weapons 1?
Never ask me why! You are, however, allowed to ask me how but in this case you appear to have that locked down. ;)
 
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I kind of agree that the tank designer feels a bit superfluos, it just feels like its too granular to actually mean much on the strategic sense.

For ships the problem is time lag nd the way the game plays out (where you usually win the naval war with whatever navy you strted with, with little opportunity to adapt) whcih is kinda-sorta problem of the era, but that should be less of a thing for the tank designer.
 

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Yeah sorry but I really don't see the point in a tank designer, I'm 98% certain that this will break the game and require six months of patching to rebalance. So now the AI will fumble around with designs and the players will cheese it.
To be honest, I'm not convinced either. The ship designer was nice because it allowed us to make ships for various purposes -- a destroyer hull could become an ASW ship, a minelayer or minesweeper, a close-range torpedo ship for use in fjords and archipelagos, and so on. Likewise with an air designer, you could take an empty light bomber fuselage and design an ASW plane (heck, maybe you could even have flying boats, stationed at ports, not airfields), a level bomber, a gunship, or a long-range recon aircraft.

Most of the components we can put on tanks so far seem to just boil down to different stats, which we could already do with the variants designer. I will probably tinker around with the tank designer when Barbarossa comes out, but I'm not super-enthusiastic.
 
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I guess it depends on how widely you define "tank", if the "tank designer", lets you design all sorts of land vehicles from trucks to armoured cars to tanks to SPGs then it might have enough vriety to be useful. But just for tanks/TDs/SPAA It feels a bit meh.
 
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Ethereld

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I kind of agree that the tank designer feels a bit superfluos, it just feels like its too granular to actually mean much on the strategic sense.
I kinda disagree, take for example France. It will likely start mostly with a few CHAR B1 for the DCR and SOMUA S35/Hotchkiss H35 developed but not yet produced for the DLM.

These models have all wielded armor (which has been stated by the developers to be the most expensive variant) and will probably have the maximum thickness allowed by the initial armor technology. This means that given their limited industry the French will have a small number of these tanks by 1939 as they are quite expensive.

Japan on the other hand also has a very limited industry, but given their opponents they could use cheap light tanks with riveted armour and armed with a fixed howitzer gun that would give maximum soft attack against the Chinese infantry spam.

So in the end IMO your tank desing philosophy can have an important impact on the performance of your army.
 
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Most of the components we can put on tanks so far seem to just boil down to different stats, which we could already do with the variants designer.
Correct. But having to research the various techs (in the existing trees) to get those components makes a more logical approach. Instead of researching a completed tank, you have to research the components that allow you to make that tank. Which means you can have tanks of the same class (light/medium/heavy etc) with national differences. You can do that now, but only in reverse (build the complete tank, then make a variant of it). Just a design evolution.

The key, for players who don't want to be bothered, and for the AI, is to have those completed designs (call them historical designs) drop when techs are completed. Something the Waltzing Matilda mod already does.
 
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The key, for players who don't want to be bothered, and for the AI, is to have those completed designs (call them historical designs) drop when techs are completed. Something the Waltzing Matilda mod already does.
In theory there should not be a need for that with the new system as it will autodesing models following historical desing philosophies for each major.

So I understand that if playing as USA you research the 1940 medium chassis and have the right components (guns, engine, armor and such) the system would offer an M4 Sherman model for you to produce or something close to it.

Now, that it works as the devs intend is another matter.
 
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I kinda disagree, take for example France. It will likely start mostly with a few CHAR B1 for the DCR and SOMUA S35/Hotchkiss H35 developed but not yet produced for the DLM.

These models have all wielded armor (which has been stated by the developers to be the most expensive variant) and will probably have the maximum thickness allowed by the initial armor technology. This means that given their limited industry the French will have a small number of these tanks by 1939 as they are quite expensive.

Japan on the other hand also has a very limited industry, but given their opponents they could use cheap light tanks with riveted armour and armed with a fixed howitzer gun that would give maximum soft attack against the Chinese infantry spam.

So in the end IMO your tank desing philosophy can have an important impact on the performance of your army.
These had casted armor, not wielded. But yes, developers had it wrong too, hopefully they fix it