Why is HOI4 so popular?

Hearts of Iron 4 are one of the most currently popular grand strategy games which are available on Steam now. When you look at stats you could see that in the last months there are like 40k – 50k active players. In this article, we will show you why is HOI4 so popular.

But let’s start with stats…

… HOI4 came to market in 2016 so it’s 6 years and the player base still growing.

Paradox Interactive

The one of best think is the developer of this game. I like how Paradox takes care of their games. Gradually we get new DLCs, where the basic game mechanics are more or less changed. More countries are coming into the game, which has their decision trees.

Since the start, we get 7 big DLC that changes focus trees or which add new mechanics. There is a list:

DLC nameDate of publish
Together for VictoryDecember 15th, 2016
Death or DishonorJune 14th, 2017
Waking the TigerMarch 8th, 2018
Man the GunsFebruary 28th, 2019
La RésistanceFebruary 25th, 2020
Battle For The BosporusOctober 15th, 2020
No Step BackNovember 23rd, 2021
By Blood AloneSeptember 27th, 2022

But the DLC here is not just for paying players. With each DLC a smaller patch comes out with fixes or possibly smaller news for each player. So I think Paradox is doing an excellent job here, and it’s one of the main reasons HOI IV is so popular.

Game design

HOI4 is beautifully balanced in terms of game design. I find that most of the game mechanics are set up well. You gradually learn the game in greater detail until you get your own “hacks”.

If you don’t play as the aggressor from the start and you try to defend for example France, the Czech Republic, or Poland so you will have everything easier because you don’t have to plan attacks. This aspect of the game you gradually add.

Well, I commend HOI4, but I have to say I don’t understand the Navy at all practically even if you find some way to get to it. What I like is that we still have new mechanic updates. For example, the last update changed the supply method drastically and from what I see in the developer diaries, we are going to see some redesign of the planes soon.

One observation I will not allow myself to make is that unlike other Paradox games – here we play for a fairly clearly defined period in history and the game from start to finish can be played in 5 – 8 hours, so it can be played faster and more intensely.

Community, mods

What makes the game significantly better is the community, which is bringing more and more people to the game. We can come across many discord servers, groups, and content creators who are dedicated to HOI4.

My favorite content creators are:

  • FeedBackGaming
  • Alex The Rambler!
  • TommyKay

Following the example of Cities Skylines, I must also highlight the modes that appear in the game, which are available on Steam Workshop. When you get tired of the base game, you can play any alternate history or alternate future.

More content about HOI4 for beginners

Where to play HOI4? | Is HOI4 free? | Is HOI4 turn-based?

I'm Martin, the main creator of this site. I love city builders, transport, and war strategy games. So I create this site to share my love with others! Let's make Tycoon games great again!