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Hearts of Iron IV battles the width meta with new changes

Published: 02:16, 30 September 2021
Paradox Interactive
If you're playing with a lot of mods, your invades will now be less choppy, that's for sure

Battling the meta sometimes gives the battles on the Eastern Front a run for their money. That is the case with the width meta as well, and developers continue to implement fixes to abusing the width mechanic.

In their guest appearance, "podcat" brought us news about the combat changes coming with Barbarossa. Back in the Combat and Stats Changes diary, Paradox outlined their quest to break down the 40 width meta and try to combat an “overall best division”.In there they outlined several changes such as varying terrain width without easy multipliers to exploit, meaning you can still make optimums for particular terrains but not all, as well as reduced penalties to going over widths.

To expand on this they have now changed how targeting and damage spreading works. One way 40 widths, and also larger, divisions were stronger than smaller ones was how they could concentrate all of their damage into one target overpowering defense more easily. Targeting is now changed so that divisions will select targets up to their own width, so a 40w can fire on two 20w, but doing so spreads the damage over them relative to their width, and to make matters clear, it’s not just for 40w. This applies to any widths that match up mathematically.

With these changes, no one can really say what the best meta is anymore. There are likely some optimums depending on your opponent and location, when balancing Org versus cost and piercing, for example. However, it doesn't mean that there is no meta, and it is up to fans to find one.

Paradox Interactive Reinforcing will be a piece of cake from now on, at least WPM-wise Reinforcing will be a piece of cake from now on, at least WPM-wise

Another small change, comparatively, will have a large impact. When deciding if a division can reinforce to the battle line inside combat, the game no longer checks in order of the order they joined combat, but instead, it will now pick randomly among all waiting divisions with their chance weighted by their reinforce chance.

This means that to optimize reinforcing you no longer need to pull micro feats to get the right divisions in order, and can much more safely toss in your newly designed tanks to save the day in ongoing combat. Also, don’t forget your signal companies, they should be more impactful now.

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