Hearts of Iron 4 – Formable Nations

Formable Nations All but one formable nations require DLC to form. Most require the Waking the […]

Formable Nations

All but one formable nations require DLC to form. Most require the Waking the Tiger DLC. Greater Hungary and an alternate formation option for Austria-Hungary require Death or Dishonor, and the Commonwealth of Nations requires Man the Guns. For most of these, formation requires that valid countries control (not own, meaning formation does not require a peace treaty) the proper states, while formation itself simply gives cores on the required states.

Formation also requires that the country be completely independent.
Where relevant, this guide assumes a game with historical AI on.


Arabia can be formed by the starting countries of Iraq, Oman, Saudi Arabia, and Yemen. It can also be formed by Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Palestine, or Syria, should they be released. Formation requires control of all Iraqi and Saudi Arabian states, as well as all British, French,and Italian states in the Middle East and North Africa, plus Spanish Morocco-essentially, everything north of the Sahara and east of Iran. All of these states are cored on formation. Oddly, formation does not require or grant cores on Yemen or Oman.

Actually forming Arabia is quite difficult. Of the starting countries Iraq is the strongest, with the largest population, an extra factory (for a grand total of three), sufficient oil reserves to attract another factory or two from your exports, superior infrastructure, and an airfield. In practice, formation requires taking territory from four much stronger nations (the U.K., France, Italy, and Spain), which are themselves part of two of the three natural powerblocks, leaving only the distant USSR as a potential ally among the great powers.

Austria-Hungary (Death or Dishonor)

Forming Austria-Hungary via Death or Dishonor is one of the two most interesting options for formable nations currently in the game, so this guide will go much more into depth on how to do so.
The player must start as Hungary, then take the Focuses from Balanced Budget through Invite the Habsburg Prince. After this you have two options. The first is Demand a Referendum* which, if the Austrians vote yes, will annex Austria’s territory. If the Austrians vote no you can choose to get a war goal on them anyway. Otherwise, the Focus Take Austria by Force gives you a War Goal as well as claims on all of Austria’s states. Essentially the choice is between a quick boost to manpower and materiel via the referendum, or forcing an early abandonment of the Treaty of Trianon by entering a war. Fighting Austria is harder than it may look; while you do have more divisions and Vienna and Graz are just across the border through easy terrain, your low manpower means your divisions are understrength (though this will improve as soon as the war starts, since you renounce the Treaty of Trianon) and Austria won’t surrender until you take at least one of their more western cities. Encircling a segment of their army near the border is recommended. Once you control Austria, taking Restoration of Austria-Hungary will change your tag to Austria-Hungary and give you cores on all Austrian and Czechoslovakian states.
The next Focus, Protect Czechoslovakia*, may be the most important in this sequence, as the Czechs have a large army, strong fortifications, and good industry and resources. The Focus can result in annexation, puppeting, or an outright refusal. Annexation is obviously the best, as it gives you direct control of all those divisions, and makes regaining the rest of the Empire far easier. Puppeting is also useful, but a complete refusal is a major issue. Not only do you not get all of those Czech divisions, but the losses you take in defeating them will set you back even further. If it comes to war, severing Slovakia from Bohemia is a good place to start, preferably isolating a segment of their army in the process. After that, though, reducing Bohemia is likely to be a lengthy, painful process.
*Taking the Focus Integrate the Railroads (following Industrial Revitilization) gives an opinion boost with Austria and Czechoslovakia and significantly increases the odds of success in the Demand a Referendum and Protect Czechoslovakia events.
The remaining Focuses in the tree give claims, rather than cores. If you have Waking the Tiger you can take the Reintegrate the Empire decision, which requires the states claimed in the Claim Transylvania and March to the Shore Focuses, except for Zara. This gives cores on the required states, plus Zara, Istria, and South Tirol.

Austia-Hungary (Waking the Tiger)

The Waking the Tiger path to reforming Austria-Hungary can be done by the starting nations of Austria and Czechoslovakia, or by Croatia, should it be released. Hungary cannot use this method. Formation requires all Autrian, Czechoslovakian, and Hungarian states, as well as Bosnia, Crisana, Croatia, Dalmatia, North Transylvania, Slovenia, Transylvania, and Vojvodina-essentially, western Romania and northern Yugoslavia. Formation grants cores on all required states, plus Istria, South Tirol, and Zara.

Czechoslovakia is the obvious choice for this path, as it has by far the best industry, resources, starting army, and population, plus a unique Focus tree (if the player has Death or Dishonor).

Baltic Federation

The Baltic Federation can be formed by Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. Formation requires all Estonian, Latvian, and Lithuanian states, and grants cores on those states.

Of these, either Latvia or Lithuania can be considered the most powerful-Lithuania has a marginally larger population, while Latvia starts with a dockyard. Regardless of which country forms it, the Baltic Federation will sit between two much larger countries with designs on it’s territory-Germany, which wants Memel, and the USSR, which wants everything else.

Byzantine Empire

The Byzantine Empire can only be formed by Greece, and requires all Greek, Turkish, and Yugovlavian states, as well as Albania and Banat, Dobrujda, Muntenia, and Oltenia in southern Romania. Formation grants cores on all of these states and moves the capital to Istanbul, which is renamed Constantinople.

Greece also has access to three ‘Triumph’ decisions, which are thematically related but do not actually require forming the Empire.
The Triumph for Italy requires and grants cores on all European Italian states.
The Triumph for the Levant requires and grants cores on Aleppo, Cyprus, Damascus, Dier-Az-Zur, the Dodecanese, Lebanon, Jordan, Palestine, and Sinai-essentially, the British and French Middle East plus the eastern islands of the Mediterranean.
The Triumph for Egypt and Tunisia requires and grants cores on Alexandria, Aswan, Benghasi, Cairo, Cyrenaica, Derna, Eastern Desert, El Agheila, Gabes, Marsa Matruh, Sirte, Tripoli, Tripolitania, and Tunis-essentially eastern North Africa.

Commonwealth of Nations

The Commonwealth of Nations can only be formed by the United Kingdom and requires the Man the Guns DLC. The UK must take the Focuses from Reinforce the Empire to Hold the Imperial Conference, which requires that the Dominions (Canada, South Africa, Australia, and New Zealand, plus India if the Focus Indian Autonomy has been taken) be subjects of and the same ideology as the UK. This Focus will unlock several proposals that can be suggested, one of which is the Imperial Federation. Each Dominion must approve of the Federation or it will be defeated; 50 political power can be spent when the decision is taken to improve the odds of success, which improve further the better relations are with the Dominions. If Federation is accepted, all original subjects will gain the National Spirit Federal Integration, which gives a massive -3 to daily autonomy, which is essentially impossible to overcome. Once all Dominions have been reduced to the level of Integrated Puppet, the Focus Imperial Federation can be taken. This annexes and transfers all leaders from the Dominions and British Malaya, and cores all Canadian, South African, Australian, and New Zealand states and changes the UK’s name to the Commonwealth of Nations.

European Union

The European Union can be formed by the starting countries of Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxemburg, or the Netherlands, or by West Germany, if it is created. Formation requires all Belgian, Dutch, French*, German, and Italian states in Europe, plus Luxemburg, and requires that the forming country be Democratic.

The problem is that it is essentially impossible to gain the required states while Democratic, since Democracies cannot fabricate against countries that have not generated World Tension, and Luxemburg is never going to do so on its own. The only realistic way to form the EU is to conquer the required territory while authoritarian, then flip to Democratic to take the decision, which is a little convoluted and immersion breaking.

This is unfortunate, as the EU has the potential to be the strongest country in the game, with manpower, resources, industry, and research (if formed by Democratic Germany) to rival the United States.

*The decision appears to be bugged, as it neither requires nor cores the French state of Midi Pyrenees.

Franco-British Union

The Franco-British Union can only be formed by the United Kingdom, and is unique in that it can only be formed by event and is the only one formable without DLC. Formation requires that France be in a faction with the U.K., have a surrender progress greater than 70%, be at war with Germany, and not be in a civil war, and that Germany be a faction leader, be at war with the U.K., and control the state Ile de France.
When these requirements are met, France will get an event that determines it’s response to it’s defeat. France is most likely by far to seek an Armistice, becoming Free France and creating Vichy France as a German puppet. However it is possible (7.5% chance) that they will instead offer a union with the U.K. In this case, the United Kingdom will receive an event to either accept or reject the union. Accepting will change the U.K.’s name to the Franco-British Union, annex all states and units still controlled by France, and grant cores on all French cores.

Gran Colombia

Gran Colombia can be formed by Colombia, Panama, Ecuador, Venezuela, or Peru. Formation requires all Colombian, Ecuadorian, Panamanian, and Venezuelan states, plus Loreto and Pastaza-essentially, northern Peru. Formation grants cores on all required states, plus British Guyana, Curacao, and the Panama Canal.

Greater German Reich

The Greater German Reich can only be formed by a Fascist Germany. For the decision to appear, Germany either must be at war with France and France must have capitulated, or Germany must own and control Ile de France. Taking the decision requires Germany fully control the states of Leningrad and Stalingrad, as well as all owned states. Taking the decision will change Germany’s name to Greater German Reich and Berlin’s name to Germania, and turn Germany to a darker shade of grey.

Greater Hungary

Greater Hungary can only be formed by Hungary via the Focus Proclaim Greater Hungary, in the Strengthen Fascists branch, which is only available with Death or Dishonor. This requires Hungary to own (not control) the states of Banat, Carpathian Ruthenia, Crisana, North Transylvania, Southern Slovakia, Transylvania, and Vojvodina. Completing the Focus will change Hungary’s name to Greater Hungary and add 10 Stability.

Greater Indonesian Confederacy

The Greater Indonesian Confederacy can be created by British Malaysia or the Dutch East Indies, and requires all British Malaysian and Dutch East Indies states. Formation cores all required states.

Of these two, the Dutch East Indies is the more powerful (and has a weaker overlord to break free from), making it the easier choice. Once unified, Indonesia will possess a large population and the vast majority of the world’s rubber, and is in a good position to capture Indochina, giving it a near monopoly and thus plentiful factories from trade.

Holy Roman Empire

The Holy Roman Empire is the most complicated formable nation to form, though as of patch 1.6 it seems to be possible to guarantee the proper events fire.
The HRE can only be formed by Germany, and the decision can only be accessed if Victoria, the only daughter of Wilhelm II, the last German emperor, is on the throne.
Getting her there is rather complex. The Focus Oppose Hitler must be taken. After the civil war is won, the Focuses through Return of the Kaiser must be taken. The Netherlands must block the return of Wilhelm II, and they more likely to do so the stronger their army is compared to Germany’s; if they have a strength ratio of 5x Germany they are guaranteed to do so. When they refuse, Germany must take the option instate his son as Wilhelm III.*
The Hindenburg event will fire at some point during this, and the Hindenburg must survive. It has a 30% chance to do so on it’s own, but it’s survival can be assured by taking the decision Sharpen Air Safety Regulations prior to the event firing.

Once Wilhelm III is on the throne, the decision Reinstate Prince Wilhelm’s Right of Succession becomes available. Doing so allows the decision Modernize the Succession Laws, which allows women to inherit; this puts Victoria in the line of succession, though she is still behind her older brothers and her nephew.

The Focuses through Alliance with the Shade must be completed; once Germany is in the Allies the decision Request Restoration of British Titles will be come available. Once taken the British will suggest a ceremony, and Germany must send Victoria ahead to help with the preparations. The Imperial family will fly over in the Hindenburg, but it will crash and kill the rest of the line of succession, making Victoria the Kaiserin. This event should not be affected by Sharpen Air Safety Regulations, though this has not been tested.

Once Victoria is on the throne the decision to reform the HRE will become available. Doing so requires and cores all Austrian and Swiss states, all Belgian and Dutch states in Europe, and the states of Luxembourg, Alsace-Lorraine, Savoy, Lombardy, Tuscany, Emilia Romagna, Piedmont, South Tyrol, Veneto, Istria, Sudetenland, Eastern Sudetenland, Bohemia, and Moravia.

*It may also be possible to take Wilhelm II and wait for him to die, which historically happened June 1941, but this has not been tested.


Mutapa can be formed by the starting country of South Africa, or by Botswana, Mozambique, or Zimbabwe, should they be released. Formation requires all South African states, plus Bechuanaland, Mozambique, and Rhodesia. Formation cores all required states.

Nordic League

The Nordic League can be formed by the starting nations of Denmark, Finland, Norway, and Sweden, as well as by Iceland*, should it be released. Formation requires and cores all Danish, Finnish, Norwegian, and Swedish states.

*Although the game files indicate Iceland should be able to use this decision, it cannot currently see it.

Ottoman Empire

The Ottoman Empire can only be formed by Turkey, and requires all Iraqi and Turkish states, all French states in the Middle East, and Hejaz, Jordan, Kuwait, Palestine, and Yemen. Formation cores all required states, as well as all British states in Egypt, all Italian states in North Africa, Cyprus, the Dodecanese, Gabes and Tunisia.

Persian Empire

The Persian Empire can be formed by Afghanistan and Iran, and requires all Afghan, Iranian, Iraqi, and Turkish states, all French states in the Middle East, all British states in the Middle East and Egypt, and Benghasi, Cyprus, Cyrenaica, Derna, and the Dodecanese. Formation cores all required states and Gibraltar.

Rattanakosin Kingdom

The Rattanakosin Kingdom can only be formed by Siam. Formation requires both Siamese states plus Laos and Cambodia, and cores Laos and Cambodia.

Roman Empire

The Roman Empire can only be formed by Italy. Formation requires and cores all Bulgarian, Greek, Iraqi, Swiss, Turkish, and Yugoslavian states, all Belgian and Portuguese states in Europe, all Italian and Spanish states in Europe and North Africa, all French states in Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East*, and all British states in England, Wales, Egypt, the Middle East, and the Mediterranean*, as well as Albania, Alföld, Banat, Brabant, Crisana, Dobrujda, Holland, Luxemburg, Muntenia, North Transylvania, Oltenia, Transylvania, and Tyrol. Benito Mussolini is also renamed to Augustus Mussolini and gains a laurel wreath, and the idea Victor Emmanuel is removed.

*The decision appears to be bugged, as it neither requires nor cores the French state of Midi Pyrenees or the British state of Gibraltar.


Scandinavia can be formed by Denmark, Norway, and Sweden, and requires and cores all Norwegian and Swedish states, and all Danish states on the mainland.

The Commonwealth

The Commonwealth can be formed by Lithuania and Poland, and requires all Lithuanian and Polish states. Formation grants cores on all required states, as well as Bobruysk, Cherkasy, Chernihiv, Gomel, Khemelnytskyi, Kiev, Kurzeme, Minsk, Mozyr, Ostpreusen, Poltava, Roslavl, Smolensk, Vidzeme, Vinnytsia, Vitebsk, and Zhytomyr.

United Netherlands

The United Netherlands can be formed by Belgium, Luxemburg, and the Netherlands. Formation requires and cores all Belgian and Dutch states in Europe, plus Luxemburg.

United States of Central America

The United States of Central America can be formed by Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua, and requires the states of Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Nicaragua. Formation cores the required states and British Mexico.


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