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First official public screenshot of HoI4's map & interface, from the 7th February 'Our Vision' dev diary
The map is where most tactical and many strategic decisions happen, and provides information related to these purposes, such as weather, air combat, land combat, naval combat, and buildings.
Using different mapmodes, you can alter the look of the Map, based on what you want to see.
The Map is divided into provinces as in Hearts of Iron III, each with a Terrain type. Rivers can form borders between provinces, and does not cut through and divide any.