With limitless possibilities to designing your divisions in Hearts of Iron IV, it is easy to be overwhelmed when you open the division designer. Luckily, I’m here to walk you through the most optimal division templates in the game, discussing their purpose and when to use them.
Due to the Barbarossa update and the No Steps Back DLC, designing the “perfect” division in Hearts of Iron IV is nearly impossible. Below you will find some strong generalized templates, but the absolute best division depends heavily on your circumstances in game. Some factors you will have to take into account if you modify these divisions are your industrial capacity, location, who you are fighting, and your fuel.
That said, these templates will serve you well as either a starting point to create your own, or as an easy way to have a strong military without worrying about min-maxing in the division designer.
If you aren’t familiar with the division designer, be sure to check out our guide on it to acclimate yourself with the interface.
There is no single best combat width now, instead there are several effective combat widths to choose from. The best widths are usually considered 10, 15, 18, 27, and 41-45. Some variance exists depending on your starting region, but most players won’t have to worry about this.
Pros of smaller templates are that they have very high organization for their combat width. Organization is vital in combat, so this is a significant benefit. However, they are expensive for support companies, require more generals, and will need more micro-play.
Larger templates on the other hand, require fewer generals, support companies are cheaper, and they take fewer losses in combat.
Infantry templates will be the largest part of most armies and are great to use if you have limited industrial capacity. While they have limited offensive capabilities compared to some other types of divisions, they are excellent for plugging in gaps and holding lines.
Infantry and Artillery
Pairing infantry and artillery has been a classic combination since the creation of cannons. Adding artillery to infantry divisions is great because it gives the high HP infantry a strong soft attack boost. With our infantry, we want to emphasize HP, Armor, and Soft Attack. While the combat width of your infantry divisions will vary, the basic principle will stay the same.
The width of your division will be up to preference, but it is best to stick close to widths of 18, 27, and somewhere in the range of 40-45 for larger divisions. The closer you are to those widths, the better, but it can sometimes be better to squeeze in an extra battalion instead of worrying about the optimal width.
For the flamethrower tank support company, you want to use a very cheap tank design. For the medium tanks, use a design that focuses on armor. Feel free to substitute the medium tanks for heavy tanks if you have the industrial capacity. Some example designs can be found under the Tank Templates section.
Pure infantry can be useful because it is cheap to produce and uses minimal fuel. Using only infantry allows you to stay at 10 combat width, which offers the best organization for the combat width. Adding support artillery and an engineer to your support companies make this division very effective at holding ground.
One of the most powerful forces on the battlefield in Hearts of Iron IV are the tanks. They can completely change a frontline with devastating offensive power.
In order for the divisions below to work, you will need to design some cheap, niche tanks. These are a flamethrower tank, a tank destroyer, and a cheap high-armor tank. The designs for those are simple, but important for the divisions to work. General tank designs can be found at our Tank Designs guide.
This flamethrower design is exclusively for support companies, so the individual design has minimal effect on combat. For those reasons we go for the cheapest medium design possible, only attaching a flamethrower weapon to a basic chassis.
The sole purpose of this tank is to provide a piercing bonus to infantry divisions. Similar to the flamethrower design, we go for the cheapest way to create a tank destroyer. Set the turret to a fixed superstructure and change the main weapon to a heavy cannon.
The goal for this tank is to support infantry divisions with armor. We upgrade the armor type to welded and add sloped armor as a special module. Choose the cheapest option for everything else, and we have a budget-friendly armored vehicle. You can also choose to change the tank type to heavy and add more armor if your industry can support it.
Tank Division Designs
Armored divisions are indispensable when it comes to breaking through front lines. Armored divisions have excellent attack values and are usually more mobile. Medium tanks will be used because of how good they are all-around, but players can swap them out for light or heavy tanks depending on personal preference.
The templates below will be 30 and 42 width, since you usually want armored divisions to be larger. Still, feel free to adjust the combat width based on starting circumstances and industrial capacity.
By using these templates you will be dominate on the battlefield in Hearts of Iron IV. While there are other divisions with some niche uses, these will be the basis of your army throughout your campaigns.
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Strategy game enthusiast, especially Paradox titles and the Civilization series. Whenever he's not writing he spends his time watching sports, enjoying coffee, or studying history.