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Hearts of Iron 4 By Blood Alone DLC hits the Italian front

Italy is the focus of Hearts of Iron 4: By Blood Alone, the new HOI4 expansion from Paradox, which also allows players to design their own airplanes

Italy is the focus of the new Hearts of Iron 4 expansion By Blood Alone

Prepare to head to the front once more, as Paradox confirms the latest expansion for its popular strategy game is Hearts of Iron IV: By Blood Alone. The new HOI4 expansion focuses on rewriting history for Italy, Ethiopia, and Switzerland, and will even allow players to design their own airplanes.

While we’re probably still a long way off from Hearts of Iron V, the previous game remains one of the best grand strategy games on PC and Paradox has just announced the latest expansion for release sometime in 2022 – the next major expansion for Hearts of Iron IV after November’s No Step Back.

Hearts of Iron IV: By Blood Alone will include new focus trees for Italy, Ethiopia, and Switzerland, with – as the teaser trailer below suggests – the Italian side seemingly being the major one. Players can follow the real-world path of Mussolini’s Axis power or take Italy down an alternate historical route, such as restoring the monarchy, promoting democracy, or even having a Communist revolution.

Ethiopia will have to resist an invasion by Italy, and the usually-neutral Switzerland will have to walk a delicate balancing act to stay that way. Players will have access to new Peace Conference options, such as demilitarization zones, claiming reparations, or making a grab for the capital ships of defeated countries. You can even embargo enemies to prevent them from trading with you until they reach the correct level of world tension.

Possibly the most interesting addition to By Blood Alone is the airplane designer, which allows players to, well, design their own aircraft – everything from tiny but nimble interceptors to slow but devastating bombers. There are 67 new plane models in the expansion too, so there should be plenty of options for new designs – as well as new units and medals.

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Hearts of Iron IV: By Blood Alone releases in 2022. Will it make the list of the best Hearts of Iron IV DLC? We’ll have to wait and see.