Hearts of Iron III is one of the most enjoyable strategy games you’ll ever play. The game had a ton of flaws when it was released, and even after a lot of patches and an expansion pack, it never reached its full potential. Still, the game was undeniably fun. And now, a new expansion pack for the game, titled For the Motherland, has been released. Is it any good? Does it fix the flaws of the original game? Read on to find out.
The answer to those questions is: yes and no. Yes, it is very enjoyable, and worth its price tag. But no, it doesn’t fix all the flaws of HoI3. Some improvements have been made to the original game- the AI is not much better, and the game now supports multi-core processors, so the graphics have been given a much needed boost too. Neutrality has been improved, which fans of the original game would find to be a huge plus.
The biggest improvement of all, though, is the addition of the Partisan system. Via the Partisan system, you can control the population in several ways “behind the scenes” even if you’re not in power. You can undermine their decisions, or undermine a particular ideology. It adds to the depth of the game greatly, and gives you all the more reason to invest more time into the game.
Politics is probably the thing that For the Motherland does best. Internal politics, trying to stay in power for as long as possible, while also building your nation’s strengths, and with the Partisan system to boot, the game gets an unprecedented level of depth and hooks you to itself in more ways than one.
Combat has been improved greatly as well, with the addition of war goals and the Theater mode. War goals are, well, war goals- you set specific goals in terms of political ruling or territorial expansion, and work towards those goals. This gives the game a great focused feel, and it keeps you in the heat of things at all times. With the Theater system, you can make changes to the fronts you or your allies are fighting on. You can make instantaneous decisions, like changing your stance from a peaceful diplomatic deal with one country to helping them in war against another.
However, there are a lot of flaws in For the Motherland. For one, the resource collection is illogical and distribution is a little scattered. The game is, like all Paradox games, full of bugs and glitches. The events in the game are not all historically accurate and the game tends to get a bit boring sometimes. Also, the fact that you cannot play this without having both, Hearts of Iron III and the first expansion pack might turn off some people.
However, the game boasts of a lot of replay value. The depth and complexity of the game make you want to come back for more and the newly added Battle Scenarios, which are like mini campaign which you can hop in to play for short doses of fun, add to that replay value greatly.
All in all, Hearts of Iron III: For the Motherland is a great new expansion pack for an already enjoyable game. The flaws are a little irritating at times, but the new additions are good enough for you to ignore the bugs. Just be ready to spend a lot of money on the original game and the other expansion pack to play this one, if you don’t have them already.
This game was reviewed on the PC.
Deep and addictive; Gives you an unprecedented amount of control over things you can do; Improved AI; New Partisan system adds to the gameplay greatly; Battle Scenarios provide short bursts of fun; Very high replay value
Glitchy and buggy; Resource distribution is illogical; Not historically accurate; Can get a little boring sometimes; Not playable unless you also have the first expansion pack
Hearts of Iron III: For the Motherland is a very enjoyable expansion pack to an already deep strategy experience, although with a few flaws that might turn several people off.