Who thinks, that HOI 4 could be a much better game, if it wasn't based around WW2?

Who thinks, that HOI 4 could be a much better game, if it wasn't based around WW2?

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dicklionell

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Basically the title, but context in which I came with question is very important in my opinion. I will try to give it in terms of some promises, that game gives and a certain problem, that it encounters along the way of fulfilling those promises.

Promises:
1) Actual application of strategy; long duration of each individual game and complexity of the mechanics should in theory provide rich opportunity for theory crafting, team-play, replayability, etc., etc., everyone, who likes the game, knows what I'm talking about.

2) Historical setting with alt-history possibility, which should be as substantial as the default one.

Problems:
1) AI is absolutely abhorrent. it can't play the game it is supposed to play.

There is no real reason to mention any other problems, because it immediately negates both promises at once. You can't play real grand-strategy with AI, because it is incapable of doing so and you can't play real alt-history with AI, because game becomes a clown-fiesta almost immediately, losing all notion of believability. Even worse, problems with AI leak into all aspects of the game, because Paradox still needs to make the game enjoyable and fun, and in order to so, they need to make compromises with, essentially, a dysfunctional system.

All of this came to my attention, because recently, after a year of not playing HOI 4, having played 150 hours of SP previously and getting tired of interacting with AI, I decided to give the game a chance and prepare myself for MP in the summer, thinking, that it could improve the general experience. But upon reading some threads on this forum and reddit it seems, that MP is power-gaming absolute as it was a year ago.

My theory is that reason for this is a rigid historical setting, allowing for efficient optimization, converging to a near optimal strategy. Paradox wanted to honestly represent the time period at the same time creating mechanics, that would organically lead to all signature things of the said time period: blitzkrieg, deep battle, the way in which war in the Pacific was fought, ect., but in the end, historical accuracy came into conflict with the actual gameplay.

So is it possible, that by dropping the WW2 setting, game could be made in such a way, that it would accomplish at least the promise 1) by using the received freedom to resolve the problem with the AI? The core can still be the same, but you no longer need to account for thousand alt-history possibilities and instead focus on the fundamental army/navy/air interactions and how to make them in such a way, that current AI technology used in Paradox can actually be competent at a game created. Maybe this would additionally resolve MP problems, because with agents, that are competent at playing SP version of the game, balance problems of SP and MP are closer to each other. Maybe this could free endless man-hours, that are now spent on checking whether new dozen of country focuses are consistent with hundred of the old ones and instead those man-hours can be spent on polishing the basic interactions, which, is, apparently, still a problem, 2.5 years after release.

What do you guys think?

Also I'm sorry for any strange sentences above, I'm a bit tired right now, english is not my primary language, etc, ect., but I couldn't go to sleep without asking this question. If something seems unclear, just ask, I will try my best to amend the situation.
 

IlPopa

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i'd unironically love to play mp where every country starts with the same factories/army/navy

this really has been the promise of the arcadey streamlining from the start

an rts where you can sit down and play a competitive game from start to finish in 3-4 hours
 

Alspego

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The AI of HOI4 is, in the context of AIs in many strategy games, not bad. If you are a new player, the AI provides a solid challenge for at least 100-200 hours, maybe more, without giving the AI massive advantages. This is basically then in almost all games (especially in consideration of the complexity of the game). Since many strategy games are struggling with this problem (e.g. the Total War Games have a bad AI even after decades of different games, similar for the CIV games), it suggests that the base problem is much deeper and does not depend on the historical setting.

With that said: I would like to see a Civ-style HOI4 with the same combat mechanics etc, but on a randomized map, where you can choose some starting nation with different focus trees etc.
 

grandad1982

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As it stands with a little reworking it would probably make a decent (if not better) ww1 game.
 

hillcf

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Lets merge it with CK2 and EU4 - then we can fight the 100 years war, Napoleon etc. in detail. ;):confused:







Or, of course, just buy Total War Medieval 2, Empire and Napoleon. :D
 

Nis Baggesen

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While I can follow the argument that it might make for a game that it would be mechanically easier to balance, I would have little interest in a game without a historical foundation.
 

Aaronomus

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Suggesting that the game would be better it were a completely different game is such a bad argument that it's not even wrong.
 

Reman

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I wish HoI4 would fully embrace its destiny as a "strategy game set in the WW2 era", rather than try to be "a WW2 strategy game". Alt history is really the only thing that gives this game any replayability, because there's only so many times you can play as one of the great powers before the game becomes stale.

Playing as a smaller power like Hungary as it would have been historically would not be fun, as essentially being at the mercy of an AI Germany on one side and an AI USSR on the other side would make the player's end result little more than RNG. Going alt-history and restoring the Austro-Hungarian Empire, on the other hand, is quite fun because you can become powerful enough to compete with the great powers and meaningfully contribute to one side winning or losing. Yet, when I try to play as nations like Austria-Hungary I keep getting bogged down in things like janky faction mechanics, ridiculous peace conferences, Norwegian guarantee trolling, etc. that greatly harm the overall experience. The devs have gone on record and said the reason they don't prioritize fixing these mechanics is because "they work OK for a WW2 game". Given that these mechanics ruin entire campaigns with a high frequency, this explanation sounds more like an abdication of responsibility than a coherent design philosophy.
 

Bismark776

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I would like to see the game developed to provide ww2 using "soft power" approaches instead of railroading. More mechanics that allow for divergence but logically encourage the tactics, decisions, and outcomes that occurred historically. If it didn't have ww2, however, I definitely wouldn't be interested.
 

Ruanek

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With that said: I would like to see a Civ-style HOI4 with the same combat mechanics etc, but on a randomized map, where you can choose some starting nation with different focus trees etc.
That would be awesome. I'd love to see something like CK2's random world generator or EU4's random new world added to HOI4. I think it'd be a lot harder to do in some ways, though, because for those games they're just replacing the starting gamestate with something different while HOI4's focus system would be hard to randomly generate in a way that provided some sort of history and some plausible paths forward. You could leave everything generic, I suppose, but that removes a lot of the flavor of the game.
 

GAGA Extrem

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It would obviously better if it was 1836-1948.
*cough cough*

...but, seriously: Imagine the HOI4 equipment system in Vicky. It would be amazing.
"Oh hell yeah, new Steel Artillery! Now I just need to produce it for 10 years to actually equip my army and... err... China, would you like some really cool Iron Cannons, only shot once or twice?"
 

Fulmen

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I think HoI4 would be a better game, if it was truly based on WW2.
 

freespace2

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HOI IV could have been a much better game as is only if they had not Developed it on a Outdated and outclassed engine. This engine is utter failure for Multiplayer match making!.
It is the same basic engine they have used for most of their game if not all of them. But WW2 scenario is very fun though and Modding community is doing a fantastic job with alt history.
 
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Elite1138

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  • Hearts of Iron IV: Field Marshal
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rights of Man
  • Stellaris: Digital Anniversary Edition
  • Stellaris: Leviathans Story Pack
  • Stellaris
  • Steel Division: Normandy 44 Deluxe Edition
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Death or Dishonor
  • Steel Division: Normand 44 - Second Wave
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cradle of Civilization
  • Europa Universalis IV: Rule Britannia
  • Europa Universalis IV: Dharma
  • Imperator: Rome Deluxe Edition
  • Imperator: Rome
  • Hearts of Iron IV: La Resistance
  • Europa Universalis IV: Common Sense
  • Europa Universalis IV: Cossacks
  • Europa Universalis IV: El Dorado
  • Victoria 2
  • Darkest Hour
  • Europa Universalis IV: Art of War
  • Europa Universalis IV: Conquest of Paradise
  • Europa Universalis IV: Wealth of Nations
  • Hearts of Iron IV: Expansion Pass
  • Europa Universalis IV: Call to arms event
  • For the Motherland
  • Hearts of Iron III
  • Europa Universalis IV: Third Rome
  • Hearts of Iron III: Their Finest Hour
  • Hearts of Iron III Collection
  • Europa Universalis IV: Res Publica
  • Victoria: Revolutions
  • Semper Fi
  • Victoria 2: A House Divided
  • Victoria 2: Heart of Darkness
  • Stellaris: Galaxy Edition
  • Europa Universalis IV: Pre-order
  • Crusader Kings II
I've always thought that a game with a larger time frame would be better suited to the more outlandish alt-history scenarios. A larger time frame would give more options for more plausible alt-history and make dramatic political shifts more believable. A game that is more of a general 20th Century simulator. Similar to Victoria but adapted to the 20th century.
 
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