Hearts of Iron 4 (HOI4) – How to Change Country Name and Capital

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We know from other Paradox Interactive grand strategy games that we can generally customize everything we want about a historical country in one of their games. Crusader Kings 2 and 3 allowed players to change the names of provinces, countries, and castles.

In Europa Universalis 4, you could change your capital almost at any time, as long as you had the necessary “mana” points.

Recommended Read: How to Increase Organization in Hearts of Iron 4

However, Hearts of Iron 4 is very different from these games, and it is, in many ways, a lot less friendly when it comes to customization. Though you explore extremely different alternate history scenarios for each country, can you really just change the name of, for example, Germany?

In this guide, we will tell you if it is possible to move your capital and change your country name in HOI4, as well as how to do it.

Table of Contents

Can You Change a Country Name in HOI4?

In HOI4, you can change the name of your country by changing the political party in power or by going down interesting focus tree paths.

However, there is no way in vanilla HOI4 to press a button, for example, and give the country whatever name you want.

Here are the common ways you can change the name of your country in HOI4 into other preexisting names:

  • Change Ruling Party
  • National Focus
  • Decision
  • Events

Usually, when you change the name of your country due to decisions or events, you are actually forming a “new” country.

The ones you can pursue through the National Focus are a bit different since they can change the name of your country even though the borders are the same (e.g. the Papal States).

Here is a list of all the formable countries in HOI4:

  • African Union
  • Alpine Confederation
  • Anarcho-communist Union of Africa
  • Andalusia
  • Arabia
  • Austria-Hungary
  • Axumite Empire
  • Baltic Federation
  • Byzantium
  • Chinese Empire
  • Confederated States of America
  • Dominion of North America
  • East Africa
  • Empire of Finno-Ugra
  • Empire of Solomon
  • Empire of Zion
  • Estonia-Belarus
  • Estonia-Finland
  • European Union
  • Franco-British Union
  • Global Defense Council
  • Gojjam
  • Gran Colombia
  • Greater German Reich
  • Greater Hungary
  • Greater Indonesian Confederacy
  • Greater Italy
  • Greater Lithuania
  • Hellas
  • Holy Roman Empire
  • Horn of Africa
  • Iberia
  • Idel-Ural
  • Imperial Federation
  • Jimma
  • Kingdom of Franco-Spain
  • Kingdom of Livonia
  • Kingdom of Poland-Romania
  • Latvia-Belarus
  • Lithuania-Belarus
  • Macedonian Empire
  • Mountainous Republic of the Northern Caucasus
  • Mutapa
  • Nordic League
  • Ostland
  • Ottoman Sultanate/Empire
  • Pan-Slavic Union
  • Papal State
  • People’s Republic of China
  • Persian Empire
  • Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth
  • Polynesia
  • Rattanakosin Kingdom
  • Regnum Bospori
  • République Hélvetique
  • Roman Empire
  • Scandinavia
  • Siberia
  • Third Bulgarian Empire
  • Third Rome
  • Transcaucasia
  • Turan
  • Turkestan
  • United Balkan Federation
  • United Kingdom of America
  • United Kingdom of Portugal and Brazil
  • United Netherlands
  • United States of Central America

How to Change Country Name in HOI4 Editing Files and Using Mods

The only way you can change the name of a country in HOI4 into whatever you want is with the help of mods or by changing things in the main files of the game.

The easiest way to do it is to just go into the game files and personally change it to whatever you want. Here is how to change the country name in HOI4 to whatever you want by editing the game files:

  1. Install Notepad++.
  2. Open your Hearts of Iron 4 installation folder.
  3. Open the “localisation” folder and then open the “english” folder, if you are playing the game in English. If you are playing in a different language, select the folder for your language.
  4. Open the “countries_l_english.yml” file with Notepad++.
  5. Press Ctrl+F and write the name of the country you want to change the name of.
  6. Change the name that appears between the quotation marks.
  7. Save the file and open HOI4.

The name of the country should now be different and the whole process shouldn’t take more than a few minutes.

If you don’t want to mess with the game files and have HOI4 purchased on Steam, you can use the Nation Renaming – REVISITED mod to change the name of your country into another country that exists in the game using decisions.

Unfortunately, there isn’t as much freedom as with the first option we recommended, but at least you know this way that you won’t mess up the game’s files in any way.

Can You Change the Country Capital in HOI4?

Unfortunately, there is no way to change your capital in HOI4 without messing with the game files or using mods.

There are only two countries that can change their capitals under normal circumstances, and those are Lithuania and Ethiopia.

Your capital also changes while at war if someone conquers it, but it will be reverted back the moment you manage to recapture it.

How to Change Country Capital in HOI4 Editing Files and Using Mods

It is extremely easy to change the capital of a country in HOI4 by editing the game files.

To do this, you will just need to know where you installed the game. Here is how to change the capital of a country in HOI4 by editing the game files:

  1. Open the installation folder for HOI4.
  2. Go into history > countries folders, and find the txt file for your chosen country.
  3. Open the file with Notepad and the first thing you will see is “capital = “ and a number. The number represents the state’s ID.
  4. Don’t close the txt file. Go back into the “history” folder and open “states”. In here, search for the name of the state you want to use as capital (for example: the capital of the UK is 126-Greater London Area.txt).
  5. Change the number in the countries folder txt file for the capital into the number you found in the states folder.
  6. Save and open HOI4.

If there are more Victory Points in that state, the game will select the city with the most points. Otherwise, it will be random.

If that wasn’t clear enough, here is an example of how to change the capital of the UK to Liverpool from London:

  1. Open the ENG – Britain.txt file.
  2. Change the number 126 to 132.
  3. Save and exit.

Of course, some players won’t want to personally mess with the game files, so here is the Move Your Capital mod which should allow you to move your capital by pressing a button in-game.

That’s everything you need to know about how to change the country name and capital in Hearts of Iron 4!

Have any input or suggestions for this guide? Let us know in the comment section below.

Adrian Oprea

Based in London, United Kingdom, Adrian Oprea is a Guides Writer. As a professional single-player RPG player, Adrian has often been stigmatized. He has decided to pour his frustration into writing guides!

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