previews\ Jun 3, 2009 at 8:00 pm

Hearts of Iron 3 - PC - Preview

E3 2009 PreviewE3 2008 GameZone Previews

Those who love the real-time strategy genre should be getting excited because in early August, Paradox will be releasing a detailed and deep title that continues one of the genre’s best franchises with Hearts of Iron III.

The game should appeal to the hardcore gamer, but the tutorial sections of the game should make it easy for just about anyone to learn the fundamentals of the game – though there is a lot to learn. There are four countries to play as: Japan, the United States, Germany and the Soviet Union. And once you determine who to play as, the game allows players manual control over a variety of systems that embrace diplomacy, politics, technology, production, intelligence, and armies. Of course, should players not wish to go that deeply down the micromanagement trail, the user interface will allow players to toggle the control for those areas over the game’s AI.

Hearts of Iron 3 PC screenshots

Other features, according to the Paradox press release, includes:

  • Control the oceans with aircraft carriers, submarines and battleships and use your air force to defend your skies, support your naval and ground forces, and to bomb your enemies

  • Thousands of historically accurate real-world military commanders and politicians.

  • Realistic military command AI with unprecedented levels of interaction

  • In-depth diplomatic and political system.

  • Historical accuracy combined with an unparalleled level of freedom of choice

  • Customize your divisions in detail with more than 20 types of brigades

  • Government-in-exile makes it possible to continue to struggle from abroad with underground movements and uprisings against the oppressing power.

  • Strategic warfare system makes it more important to defend the skies and oceans against foreign attacks; leaving cities open to enemy bombing will now be devastating.

  • A completely new intelligence system, with several types of intelligence sources, makes it possible to get information about enemy reserves and troop movements.

  • Assign troops to “theaters” on the map to fight two-front wars more successfully.

  • The new AI system and more detailed map will allow for more strategic decisions.

  • Flexible technology system with hundreds of categories, and unlimited research.

  • Highly realistic historical order of battles.

  • The first realistic logistic system ever in a strategy game.

Graphically the game favors serviceable over the track that some RTS games have undertaken with miniature units battling it out. Hearts of Iron III uses counters that represent the units and give detailed information at a glance. Players can zoom in to see sprites, but this is a game that is more about the tactics and strategy than it is about cluttering the screen with tiny units engaged in battle.

You can take control of units and direct them to attack certain areas and even determine the course they will take en route to those areas. There is also a realistic weather system that will affect battles.

Hearts of Iron III is not a game that is to be taken lightly; there is a lot to do and to think about and players will have their hands full.


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