Translations for our friends around the world.

Click on banner for Theater of Operations website

Save

Author Topic: Unit Design  (Read 5077 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline choppinlt

  • Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 312
  • T.O.O. Developer
    • Buckeye Battle Group
Unit Design
« on: September 11, 2015, 04:02:50 AM »
OK, so here is something meaty to chew on...Unit Design
Below are a couple of concept pics, so please review and give describe likes and dislikes of each. The first picture you can quickly identify it is American (olive drab), 2d AD (unit patch), Tank (armor symbol), battalion (symbol on top of unit) it has a combat effectiveness between 70-85% (bottom black), primarily due to equipment issues (bottom right quadrant black).

The second pic has all the same info, visually displayed differently. It does have some extra info to include battalion number and regiment (1/66), and the number in the light blue area indicates the unit's Relative Strength Factor. This gives a player some context to the strength of a unit relative to other units.

The RSF does NOT tell a player how a unit will perform in a given situation. For instance, we can agree that a tank battalion is a stronger unit than a regular infantry unit. Which unit are you going to assign to attack in a marsh? The infantry because the tanks would be damn near worthless inside the marsh.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2015, 04:06:24 AM by choppinlt »

Offline 76mm

  • New member
  • *
  • Posts: 21
Re: Unit Design
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2015, 10:05:40 AM »
Hate to sound like a broken record, but I still think that both of these counters are really busy and unattractive.

Personally I'd much prefer simple, crisp, counters with:
1)  Nato symbol;
2)  Unit size;
3)  abbreviated unit name/designation; and
4)  one or more color-coded status indicatosr in a small box or corner which can show various unit parameters:  supply, manpower, fatigue, whatever.

For some examples from another indie wargame currently under development, see post #266 in this thread:
http://old.wargamer.com/forums/posts.asp?t=585142&pg=11#
« Last Edit: September 11, 2015, 10:10:24 AM by 76mm »

Offline choppinlt

  • Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 312
  • T.O.O. Developer
    • Buckeye Battle Group
Re: Unit Design
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2015, 03:54:43 PM »
76mm, no issues! :) When I posted this I assumed you were going to make similar comments, and that is fine because we have broached the topic in a new venue!

So the 2 pics are only a starting point and are meant for discussion purposes so that you can provide input for the design to evolve. Furthermore, as discussed earlier I plan to allow modding of the counters. In fact, I am considering having 2 different choices provided with the game: a NATO symbol version, and a more stylised version.

I like the unit patch because I think it adds authentic character to the unit...it taps in to some of the esprit du corp. From a UI perspective, you can quickly identify units from the same division. Additionally, players could use it as a button to instantly bring up the full Unit Info menu for that unit. I will play with some more layouts and solicit more commentary!

Offline Cougar11

  • HAVOC
  • *
  • Posts: 1191
Re: Unit Design
« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2015, 05:46:11 PM »
Could you possibly make a configuration box for the units? The config menu would allow you to add or take away parts of the icon. This way you would not have to worry about those that do not like all the busy.

I personally like classic US/NATO icons, but for game or software purposes I understand that you need to have more info displayed easily.

Could you also make a hover pop up box, or a side menu that would give you more detailed info without covering the map too much, or closing the map view? This also would allow for less clutter on the icons, but would then require more time in looking at units, and making decisions.

Offline choppinlt

  • Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 312
  • T.O.O. Developer
    • Buckeye Battle Group
Re: Unit Design
« Reply #4 on: September 11, 2015, 08:41:08 PM »
Here are a couple more concepts combining some suggestions. Let me know further thoughts...

Offline 76mm

  • New member
  • *
  • Posts: 21
Re: Unit Design
« Reply #5 on: September 12, 2015, 05:49:14 AM »
I like the tabs idea.  And while I know that your current counters are only rough drafts, I would also:
1)  make the background for the unit name the same color as the counter rather than while; and
2)  put the unit size marker on the counter, rather than sticking up above it. 

Another question:  will counter size vary with the size of the unit (ie, will a battalion counter be larger than a platoon counter)?  Usually this isn't necessary but since the footprint of a large unit will be much larger than that of a subordinate unit, it might make sense, I think command ops does this to some extent.  Of course the main indicator for a unit footprint should be some kind of semi-transparent footprint marker.

Offline choppinlt

  • Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 312
  • T.O.O. Developer
    • Buckeye Battle Group
Re: Unit Design
« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2015, 07:28:52 PM »
I will experiment with the unit size marker, but I like the tab on top because I can ID the unit size even though I am focusing on the main counter. I borrowed some of my counter concepts from FM 101-5-1, and the tab on top was one.

I like a different back ground color for the nameplate because I think it is more quickly identified, and easier to read.

I have toyed with the idea of varying counter size, and I think it has a lot of merit. So I am leaning toward different sized units. Regarding the footprint, yes the plan is to have a semitransparent marker showing it and the zone of control as a toggle option.

Offline choppinlt

  • Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 312
  • T.O.O. Developer
    • Buckeye Battle Group
Re: Unit Design
« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2015, 03:30:41 AM »
After re-reading my response i will add that while I am expressing my opinions, I am definitely wanting as much feedback as I can get. I havn't been able to play with any counters this weekend, but I will throw out some more examples soon.

Offline choppinlt

  • Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 312
  • T.O.O. Developer
    • Buckeye Battle Group
Re: Unit Design
« Reply #8 on: September 14, 2015, 08:07:16 PM »
OK, based on your feedback here are few more examples. Notice that each example is slightly different. Feel free to comment on the different arrangements, and recommend what you like or dislike about each. I can continue to mix and match features till we settle on something...
« Last Edit: September 14, 2015, 08:20:39 PM by choppinlt »

Offline choppinlt

  • Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 312
  • T.O.O. Developer
    • Buckeye Battle Group
Re: Unit Design
« Reply #9 on: September 18, 2015, 06:57:48 PM »
OK here are some more prototypes with the same general scheme, HOWEVER these are my concepts for the Soviets. Guard units will have the designator and the division number will be in the top left. Feel free to comment, especially since I have not received any comments recently on the units. I am kind of settling on the basic unit design of the Soviet unit on the right:


Offline Asid

  • HAVOC
  • *
  • Posts: 20938
Re: Unit Design
« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2015, 08:32:18 PM »
I like the look of the counters you posted today. They look "clean" and the info is at hand. The concern is when there are many units in close proximity.

What about stacking?

Regards

I stand against Racism, Bigotry and Bullying

Offline choppinlt

  • Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 312
  • T.O.O. Developer
    • Buckeye Battle Group
Re: Unit Design
« Reply #11 on: September 20, 2015, 08:25:26 PM »
I answered this in another thread, but there will be limited stacking...definitely no more than 2 infantry co's in the same tile...but I will want to playtest this out.

Offline choppinlt

  • Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 312
  • T.O.O. Developer
    • Buckeye Battle Group
Re: Unit Design
« Reply #12 on: September 21, 2015, 03:26:15 PM »
@Cougar11, wow I just happened to notice your post and I completely neglected to answer you directly...sorry about that!

Config Box-that is an interesting suggestion, however I'm not certain what unintended complications that may cause. Hopefully your concerns are mitigated to some degree with my follow-on designs concepts and the "basic info tab" that is able to be toggled. In this way players can quickly review lots of units and get a rough assessment.

I like the NATO icons as well, but I like the silhouettes too. Based on the feedback from the KS campaign I think the silhouettes may be "sexier", and clearly sexy sells! I fully intend to allow that to be a player preference and provide both the symbol and silhouette for each unit type. I have always felt this would be an area ripe for modding.

pop-up box/side menu-I hope to have some sort of game map UI available to show some time soon. I have a basic sketch, but want to share something a little better looking. So the basic concept for the game map UI. The game will be menu driven for the most part, meaning appropriate menus will come up when prompted, and some can be persistent till you close them out. However the basic game map UI will basically be a frame around the map with some info and buttons layed out at the bottom. There will be a section at the bottom that provides more detail on the selected unit only. Finally, if you want lots of detail on a unit, you can choose "unit info" for a particular unit. This unit info can be brought up in the "command menu" (which pops up by rt clking a unit), OR the unit patch.

Offline choppinlt

  • Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 312
  • T.O.O. Developer
    • Buckeye Battle Group
Re: Unit Design
« Reply #13 on: September 24, 2015, 05:37:22 PM »
OK, here are some more visuals to throw your way. While it may not appear significant at first glance, there are a number of things going on with this pic. First off, thanks to a certain Canadian Cat  ;) who altered the map visuals to try to make units stand out, and hopefully make the map less distracting.

Next, in the bottom left corner of the pic you will notice a couple of Soviet units. These are concept designs for battle groups (BG). Since BG's are ad hoc formations, I wanted to capture this with how they appear. Yes the icons are tiny, but it gives some indication to the unit makeup, and players will know immediately that this is NOT an organic unit and is a BG. Detailed unit info can always be brought up to find out more specifics. The unit name will reflect who the lead unit is (which establishes the chain of command). Let me know your thoughts, and let me know if you like the symbols or the silhouettes better. Personally I like the symbols because I think they will be clearer since they will be smaller.

Lastly, you are seeing the pop up menu when a unit is rt clicked. I think it is pretty self-explanatory, but feel free to ask! I will mention that the Follow command is a simple way to create a marching order of units without having a click-fest. The Fire Plan option will only be available to arty units to establish a fire plan. For instance you can designate specific times for particular missions to occur and be available to engage targets of opportunity the rest of the time.


Offline choppinlt

  • Moderator
  • *****
  • Posts: 312
  • T.O.O. Developer
    • Buckeye Battle Group
Re: Unit Design
« Reply #14 on: September 28, 2015, 06:30:58 PM »
So let me introduce another member of BBG, @Vladmiris! He recently joined the group and was instrumental in helping to infuse BBG with lots of new talent. Even though Vladmiris is NOT a programmer, he is savvy in many tech areas. Plus he has several professional techie friends wanting to help out with the project. Vladmiris was a former Army intel guy who is helping out BBG as a jack-of-all trades. He has primarily handled our social media so far, but as an avid gamer he as given thoughts and opinions to the overall project.

Vladmiris as you review this thread and knowing where we were, what are your thoughts on the latest visual layouts for unit design and the game map? Feel free to share anything else about yourself too.

 

Command: Modern Air Naval Ops 'experience levels' per unit

Started by YassyBoard Games Discussion

Replies: 0
Views: 10258
Last post December 17, 2014, 12:41:14 PM
by Yassy
(AGPT) training unit combat simulator Panzertruppe Leopard 2 battle tank A5/6

Started by AsidBoard General Discussion

Replies: 0
Views: 1635
Last post July 21, 2015, 09:17:31 PM
by Asid
VBS3 Features: Unit Path Recording

Started by AsidBoard Virtual Battlespace (V.B.S.)

Replies: 0
Views: 1534
Last post September 22, 2015, 06:02:13 PM
by Asid
Unit Counters

Started by choppinltBoard Theater of Operations: World at War

Replies: 0
Views: 1601
Last post October 08, 2015, 03:51:06 PM
by choppinlt
Unit Info Screen

Started by choppinltBoard Theater of Operations: World at War

Replies: 3
Views: 2002
Last post October 09, 2015, 03:16:49 PM
by A Canadian Cat