Hearts of Iron 4: Waking the Tiger – Add-on Review

A small overview of new products and gameplay improvements for hardcore strategy from Paradox


On March 9, another global expansion for Heart of Iron IV called Waking the Tiger was released in Russia . As you might guess, it is dedicated to the Eastern theater of the Second World War, which was a little deprived in terms of elaboration. Countries such as China and Japan, which played a rather significant role, received their additional branches of national focuses. Plus, various features were added and the gameplay was rebalanced, which we will now tell you about. The format is limited, so we will only touch on the main points.

National focuses

All Chinese warlord factions, with the exception of Menjiang, have received new focuses. While the Kuomintang is fighting for reforms and waging a war with Japan, the Communists are plotting a revolution and the overthrow of Chiang Kai-shek. Warlords can conquer China through political tactics or through a new system of border wars. Even the puppet emperor Pu Yi must make a choice – to remain loyal to the Japanese or to win the throne for himself. Nationalists, communists and Manchukuo can enlist the support of outside forces to obtain technology and weapons.

The focus tree of Japan has been completely revised and brought to the standard of the great powers for four main branches: two historical (“northern” and “southern” expansion plans) and two alternative, with a change in ideology. Hirohito now has the Imperial Sanction trait, which prevents him from getting involved in overly adventurous wars and conflicts.

Germany has also received an expansion and improvement of its focuses. The uncontested Hitler can now be exchanged for the Kaiser and replay the results of WWI, or return the Weimar Republic and unite with the Entente countries to resist the threat of the Comintern on the continent. The focus for the fleet has also been added, the focus of naval bombers has been reworked, and the focus of long-range fighters has been improved.

Yes, yes, he is the Kaiser Wilhelm! Resurrect grandfather from oblivion

Diplomacy and governance

For the game variety, special events were introduced in the form of solutions and missions: scorched earth tactics for the USSR, restoration of the Suez Canal, development of resource deposits, a new system of crises, a change in ideology, the creation of new nations, etc. They are included both in a scripted and random way.

Tired of some of the members of the union? Drive out, just consult with the rest of the members. National unity was eliminated and replaced with Stability and War Support. The first parameter is responsible for the support of the government (the ruling party), and the second is for the willingness to fight and make sacrifices. There was also a capitulation limit – the number of points after which the country surrenders completely (usually 80%), but this depends on the political regime.

You can send your attaché to belligerent countries, spending command points or political influence on it. In return, you will receive a portion of the acquired military experience, and the country will acquire a war support bonus and a planning bonus. True, she can at any time demand the recall of the attaché, and if you refuse, troubles will begin on the diplomatic front.

Raising Warlords is now as fun as Pokémon


All field marshals can now command army groups commanded by generals. They have the same skill cap as generals in a division. For commanders, personalization features were added through the following skills: attack, defense, logistics, planning. Generals will have their own separate new screen, where you can issue traits at your discretion and distribute command skill points (new resource).


Synthetic refining technologies are split into two branches that improve the production of oil and rubber. They do not increase the number of processing factories available for construction – each region can accommodate no more than three such factories. Improving infrastructure, as in the second part, now increases the amount of produced resources.

Troops are fully prepared for mother winter


In addition, you can create volunteer connections. For example, the appointment of Himmler as minister will make it possible to form historically existing SS divisions in the occupied territories. In a number of decisions (the Spanish Civil War), whole volunteer air wings are created, the links of which will be based at the air bases of the receiving side and work as usual.

Weakened divisions can now be united in situations where several full-blooded units are more needed than many weak ones. Introduced historical names for division formation templates to maintain historical authenticity. Spetsnaz units are added to the formation no more than a certain limit, it is now impossible to create whole armies of them.

Maintenance units remove a certain percentage of damaged enemy equipment and ammunition from the battlefield (base parameter 5%). A commander with the Gatherer perk increases this parameter. The captured equipment can also be sent under Lend-Lease or simply destroyed.

When transferring divisions to different climatic zones, they now need to be acclimatized. Over time, fines for being in an unfamiliar climate will decrease, and the appearance will undergo changes.

A very useful feature is to supply the encircled people in the cauldrons


Strategic bombers were now able to focus on priority targets for strike. Air formations can be attached to armies directly, automatically moving to the nearest airfields, avoiding crowding. They returned the ability to deliver supplies to encircled troops and into difficult terrain by transport workers, but it will cost command points.


Introduced a new type of combat operations – border conflicts. In fact, these are local clashes over disputed territories, without being involved in an all-out war. They only occur within the same region with a fixed set of troops. The winner receives provinces, as well as various bonuses. This mechanic very well reflects the permanent civil war in China and the Soviet-Japanese conflicts of 1938-39. on the Khasan lake and the Khalkhin-Gol river.


In fact, there are a lot of changes and they significantly change the gameplay, but they will be of interest only to dedicated fans of the series, who will figure it out on their own. This guide is intended rather for beginners, or for those players who are thinking of returning. Strategies from Paradoxes become fully playable after several major updates, and you obviously won’t go wrong with this add-on.

by Abdullah Sam
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