Wargamer Weekly: Tag Team, Graviteams and Dev Teams21 Apr 2017 0
Today's Wargamer Weekly is brought to you by the combined might of two people. How many wargamers does it take to write a news round-up? The answer may surprise you... (ED: It's one, but I got a bit swamped today so asked Marcello to help out.)
Hearts of Iron IV Dev Diary Catch-up
After a few weeks break where they had nothing to talk about, Paradox's weekly dev diaries for Hearts of Iron IV are back, this time covering the 1.4 “Oak” update and accompanying DLC due to release soon.
According to the developers, Together for Victory's feedback was mixed; a lot of people liked them, and others felt the new trees weren't adding anything new. Looking into telemetry data, Paradox discovered about 40% of players play Germany, with other major nations falling quite behind. Since Together for Victory had few German storylines, a good portion of the playerbase didn't got to see the new content. Therefore, Paradox decided to focus on the Axis side of the conflict with their new update: the Kingdom of Romania. I'll let the devs explain:
Romania is a very curious country in the context of WWII, since they were - technically - on all three sides of the war at some point (and had the war gone on long enough, I have little doubt that they would have somehow ended up in the Chinese United Front). During the interwar years, Romania had made an alliance with Poland, and had historically been closely aligned to France. In the event, the Poles decided not to activate their alliance with Romania, in order to use the neutral state on their borders to ship in Allied troops and supplies. This strategy did not fully work to Poland’s advantage. Afterwards, Romania had to come to terms with German supremacy on the continent. This grew even more pronounced when France, a nation the Romanians had always considered as a model for their own country, fell to the Wehrmacht in just 6 weeks (claims that the French AI was broken have not been confirmed by historians). King Carol II approached the Germans for an alliance, bringing Romania into the Axis - but not after the Soviet Union, Hungary and Bulgaria had forced their territorial demands on Romania.
In HoIIV, Romania starts out in a secure position, surrounded by weak or allied states and without reason to worry the bleeding Soviet Union. But with weak and outdated industry and army, she must maintain her territory. The new tree allows Romania to negotiate freely to get new technologies and equipment from the major powers, as long as you aren’t part of a faction.
The latest dev diary, shines some light on the main points of the Oak patch, including big difficult changes to the AI, making air warfare a much more pleasurable experience, and license production. The first two were not touched upon, but the latter will give nations a new way of acquiring the equipment they need. If a nation lacks the required technology to produce something, they can request a license to produce foreign equipment, such as tanks, airplanes or guns, in local factories. This is elementary historical. Elementary, the license to produce the foreign equipment and the types of tech a nation is willing to license out hinges on their diplomatic relations. Germany, for example, may not be willing to license out their latest tank or fighter designs to other nations, but would be happy to provide Panzer IIs to friendly or neutral nations. Lastly, the terrain was also changed to be more clear, with hills, mountains, and forests more easily discernible, like so:
Matrix Games / Slitherine Updates
Matrix have been pretty busy bees this week, beginning with the 2.0.12 update of Flashpoint Campaign: Red Storm. Numerous bugs affecting the map editor, waypoints, radio traffic, and more have been fixed, and you can read the whole change log here.
Next up, we got one of the most successful wargames recently released, Strategic Command WWII: War in Europe. With a lot of lovely support from the player community voer the past few months, came a wave of great mods for the game, and this week the developers choose a few of them to feature on a special post. "653H Mod", "Another counter mod", "Battlefield Europe - Elite Forces", and "Evolutionary counters mod" can all be found here, and well done, mod makers! You guys are awesome.
And speaking of awesome people, why don't you enlist to check out The Operational Art of War IV beta and test out all the kinks before it launches? Help make the game better, while playing it for free -- it's a win-win! You can sign-up here!
After a game finishes beta, it goes 'gold' and heads straight for the shelves. Order of Battle: Kriegsmarine did just that, and is available right now! Get ready to brave heavy enemy fire while leading powerful battleships and cruisers, or command silent predators and hunt Allies' convoys with the fearful German U-Boats. If you rather avoid the creatively named underwater boats, you can instead build and deploy massive new Carriers, launching new aircraft and devastating your enemies. The choice is yours, although Jeff's review might help there.
Speaking of DLC, we've got a a new expansion for the expansion god with "Legacy of the Weirdboy", the first DLC for Warhammer 40,000: Sanctus Reach. You will play as Big Redd, a ferocious weirdboy, who leads a mighty Ork horde bent on wiping out Imperial defences and taking over the whole Sanctus Reach sector. Adding new units, new abilities, and plenty of new tactical options, the developers revamped the Ork faction and they now have full unit progression in their own campaign. They listened to feedback from players following the release of Sanctus Reach, and assure us they worked on it.
New Game Announcement
We're overdue an update of our Wargamer's Guide to 2017, which is made all the more apparent because we actually have a new game that needs looking at. Graviteam, the makers of Graviteam Tactics has partnered once again with veteran publisher Strategy First to bring a new game to grogs - Tank Warfare: Tunisia 1943'.
Offering both turn-based and real-time modes/options, this game will feature an "unparalleled" level of realism, along with:
...adaptive soldier behaviour and complex vehicle damage for more than 50 detailed vehicles created between Germany, U.S and the U.K. Players can choose between the Allied and Axis soldiers to relive the Tunisian Campaign and experience this ambitious and historically accurate tank warfare game.
This game is due to drop May 2017 on Steam, so keep an eye out on the site for future coverage.
As a final note, myself (Joe) and Marcello are mobilising to go to Salute tomorrow at the London ExCel centre. I'll be wearing a slightly dusty polo shirt with the old wargamer logo on it, and Marcello will be wearing a bag or something. I don't actually know if he even wears clothes. If we're not roaming the halls looking for cool & interesting games to play, we'll probably be at the Matrix/Slitherine booth, so you can always ask for us there. If we don't see you, have a good weekend!
This article discusses games published and/or developed my members of the Slitherine Group. For more information, please see the About Us page.