Hearts of Iron IV is a grand strategy wargame developed by Paradox Development Studio and we’ll review this latest edition of the game. It was released on June 6, 2016, and is the sequel to Hearts of Iron III.
The game is set in the World War II era, and players can choose to play as any nation that existed during that time period. Basically, this includes the major powers such as the United States, Germany, and the Soviet Union, as well as smaller nations such as Costa Rica and Luxembourg. Players are responsible for managing the economy, military, diplomacy, and politics of their chosen nation, with the ultimate goal of achieving victory in the war.
Single Player versus Multiplayer Mode
The game has single-player and multiplayer modes. I generally prefer to play the single-player mode because multi-player tends to be more complicated. The complication in multi-player mode is from the variety of strategies.
When you play multi-player mode each nation has its own specific goal. For example, Romania tends to produce anti-tank artillery and Hungary produces airplanes. If you don’t fulfill your goals for each country, the multi-player community can get a bit toxic. So, for me, the single-player mode offers more freedom of choice.
However, there are quite a number of players who completely enjoy the multiplayer mode. The single-player mode can get a bit stale after a great many playthroughs. In contrast, the multiplayer mode can mix things up quite rapidly during gameplay.
Excellent Detail and Historical Accuracy
One of the most impressive aspects of Hearts of Iron IV is the level of detail and historical accuracy. The developers have done a great job of capturing the nuances of each nation and their respective political ideologies.
In addition, they have accurately captured the use of military technology and tactics used during the war. Players utilize tanks, aircraft, and ships to engage in realistic warfare.
Furthermore, the game includes several historical events and decisions that players can choose to follow or deviate from. This allows for a great deal of replayability and the ability to explore “what if” scenarios.
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Military Strategy and Diplomacy
One of the key features of the game is the ability to micromanage your military units and strategy. For example, players can choose to either let the AI handle their military strategy, or take control themselves. In addition, players can specify the exact movements and tactics of each unit. This level of control allows players to tailor their military strategy to their strengths and the specific situations they find themselves in.
The diplomacy system in Hearts of Iron IV is also well-developed. Essentially, diplomacy allows players to negotiate with other nations, form alliances, and declare war. Moreover, the game’s political system is also quite complex, with players able to choose from a variety of political ideologies and policies. These policies can impact the direction and success of their nation.
The game’s interface is relatively easy to navigate, but it can be a bit overwhelming for new players. Specifically, this is due to the sheer amount of information and options available. There is a steep learning curve, but the game does include a comprehensive tutorial. Fortunately, there is also an in-game encyclopedia to help players get up to speed.
Hearts of Iron IV Review of AI and Bugs
One of the weaknesses of Hearts of Iron IV is that the AI can sometimes make questionable decisions, particularly regarding the military. It is not uncommon to see the AI make seemingly irrational or poorly thought-out moves, which can be frustrating for players.
The game also has a number of bugs and issues, which have been addressed to some extent through patches and updates. However, as with any game bugs, these issues can still be a source of frustration for players.
Hearts of Iron VI Review: Our Verdict
Overall, Hearts of Iron IV (or HOI 4 as it is commonly referred to) is a deep and engaging grand strategy game that offers a great deal of replayability and the ability to explore histories. It is not for the faint of heart, as the learning curve can be steep and the AI can be frustrating at times. However, for those willing to put in the time and effort, it is a rewarding and enjoyable game. For me, the game is pretty addictive – so beware and have fun!
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