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PBEM - 5/17/2009 9:17:11 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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I am going through the Play-By-Email design in more detail and building the forms for the standing orders. Here are the first 3 forms for PEBM. Two of these I have shown before (earlier versions) but I wanted to start a new thread that doesn't include all the old discussions. If you are interested in those, they are somewhere in this forum().
===
My focus for these 2 posts is on the first 3 emails and the first 4 Standing Orders. I have decided to number them, as you can see in the screenshot. That makes references to them much easier.

The accompanying text is from my design document for coding the PBEM. Since I first wrote that document in the fall of 2005, I have learned a lot more about the rules (duh!). In fact everyone who has been playnig IWF has learned more, since Harry Rowland has answered a lot of questions about the rules since then.

The first 'official' email in the game (I assume this is the Global War scenario herein) is S1. The Axis player creates and sends this email, which includes all of his decisions for Italy. The stuff on reinforcements is not part of set up, but will be part of S1 at the start of each new turn thereafter.

S2 is the Allied player going through all the same steps for all of his major powers.

S3 is the Axis player going through the same steps for Japan and Germany.




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RE: PBEM - 5/17/2009 9:32:54 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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Second and last in the series.

The previous post listed all 25 standing orders. If you click on the buttons for SO 1/2/3, you'll see the form on the left. The form on the right appears when you click on the SO 4 button.

SO 1 and 3 are pretty obvious. If you have checked the box, then that event takes place during the other player's 'turn'. For example, if the USSR, while the Allied player is deciding, demands Bessarabia, then the AI Assistant (AIA) looks at the Aixs player's SO 3 settings to determine whether to grant or deny the claim. This way the Allied player can continue making decisions without have to wait for an email repsonse.

SO 2 is simply a list of all the neutral minor countries in the game and which major power on your side you want to have control the minor if the other side declares war on the minor. For example, if Germany declares war on Belgium, the AIA checks to see to which major power the minor is aligned.

SO 4 is much more complex. This SO define where you want you units to be placed. For example, when the Commonwealth and France declare war on Germany in impulse 2, where should the AIA lpace the German reserve units?

To implement this standing order two capabilities are necessary:
1 - to 'place' the units on the map.
2 - to review those placements.

The form shown solves the second problem (Review).
a - You click on a country from the list (which may include a major power setting up its reserves (e.g., Germany).
b - The units to be placed on the map appear in the list of units at the bottom of the form.
c - The insert map shows the units and you can click on a unit to see where it is placed.

For the first problem (Placement), the standard setup tray will be used. What happens is you place the units on the map but as soon as you close the form, the units disappear from the map and go back in the reserve pool (or force pool). Your opponent will not know what you have decided. However, if he does declare war, then the AIA will look up your dispositions and implement them for you.

There is one exception to the use of SO 4. It will not be used for setting up the Polish units. The Allied player needs to see the Axis fores arrayed against him to make those decisions. For setting up other minor countries, he will have had an opportunity to examine the enemy's threats in advance.




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RE: PBEM - 5/17/2009 9:44:59 PM   
paulderynck


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Will you be able to edit SO4 as time goes by and conditions change? FREX as the Russian player anticipating Barbarosa, I might want to change my planned Reserve placement every impulse.

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RE: PBEM - 5/17/2009 10:55:43 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: paulderynck

Will you be able to edit SO4 as time goes by and conditions change? FREX as the Russian player anticipating Barbarosa, I might want to change my planned Reserve placement every impulse.

Of course. That is why I have included the map insert and unit list on that form.

You will be able to click through all the minor countries and the reserves for your major powers and review them without having to go to the primary detailed map. The button Set Up Units is for both original placement of the units and for changing unit locations later.

Perhaps is isn't obvious but this form can be used to review all the minor countries and what units they have available to set up at any point in time. Every year (Jan/Feb) you will need to modify some of these setups, for the minor countries that have additional units available.

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Steve

Perfection is an elusive goal.

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Post #: 4
RE: PBEM - 5/18/2009 12:32:44 AM   
paulderynck


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shannon V. OKeets


quote:

ORIGINAL: paulderynck

Will you be able to edit SO4 as time goes by and conditions change? FREX as the Russian player anticipating Barbarosa, I might want to change my planned Reserve placement every impulse.

Of course. That is why I have included the map insert and unit list on that form.

You will be able to click through all the minor countries and the reserves for your major powers and review them without having to go to the primary detailed map. The button Set Up Units is for both original placement of the units and for changing unit locations later.

Perhaps is isn't obvious but this form can be used to review all the minor countries and what units they have available to set up at any point in time. Every year (Jan/Feb) you will need to modify some of these setups, for the minor countries that have additional units available.

Awesome.

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RE: PBEM - 5/18/2009 7:07:05 PM   
praem


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Is it required to do this for every country? If not - what happens if there are no standing orders for the DoW?

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RE: PBEM - 5/18/2009 7:14:58 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: praem

Is it required to do this for every country? If not - what happens if there are no standing orders for the DoW?

I expect that the beta testers will provide me with default setups. After all, Peter has already done them all for the AIO.

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Perfection is an elusive goal.

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Post #: 7
RE: PBEM - 5/18/2009 7:44:53 PM   
paulderynck


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Why not have an optional or even default setting of "Use AI Set-up".

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Post #: 8
RE: PBEM - 5/18/2009 8:14:04 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

Posts: 17934
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quote:

ORIGINAL: paulderynck

Why not have an optional or even default setting of "Use AI Set-up".

No. The purpose of the AI Opponent code/scripts is not to play the game on behalf of the player. I think having an experienced player make suggestions for how to play the game is fine, but I do not want to have the 'logic' that goes into the AIO's decisions available to the player at the press of a button.

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Perfection is an elusive goal.

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Post #: 9
RE: PBEM - 5/18/2009 8:43:44 PM   
Mike Parker

 

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Steve,

Will there be an option to save/load your Standing Orders.  By that I mean, if I go through and set the Standing Orders for a nation for the beginning of the campaign game (or a scenario) I would like to be able to save that, so next time I play the same scenario/nation I can just load the file.

This would I think be useful, since setting all these initially will be more time consumptive than the changes each turn.  So the first time I ever play, I will go through and make a Standing Order file, then next time I would just load up what I already have done, make the adjustments to the opponent (and his/her setup), and I am ready to go. 

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Post #: 10
RE: PBEM - 5/18/2009 9:46:33 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Mike Parker

Steve,

Will there be an option to save/load your Standing Orders.  By that I mean, if I go through and set the Standing Orders for a nation for the beginning of the campaign game (or a scenario) I would like to be able to save that, so next time I play the same scenario/nation I can just load the file.

This would I think be useful, since setting all these initially will be more time consumptive than the changes each turn.  So the first time I ever play, I will go through and make a Standing Order file, then next time I would just load up what I already have done, make the adjustments to the opponent (and his/her setup), and I am ready to go. 

Good point. I hadn't thought of that and it needs to be included.

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Steve

Perfection is an elusive goal.

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Post #: 11
RE: PBEM - 5/20/2009 1:04:15 AM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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Here is another new page for PBEM's Standing Orders - my first pass at this.

The purpose of the form is to let you enter when, who and where to fly CAP missions. That won't be very often but the next standing order is for fighter interception missions whcih will be used a lot. So, I started with the simpler task.

CAP assignments are possible for each major power for each of the 8 air missions. You select a major power and then select an air mission. If you want a major power to never fly CAP, then the check box handles that.

But if you do want to fly CAP in the upcoming impulse (where you are the non-phasing player), selecting an air mission will do several things:

1 - All threatened hexes will be identified for port attacks, strategic bombing, and ground support. For the other air missions there are far too many potential destination hexes to list them all. I might do something like list the enemy ATRs that could fly for paradrops, air transport, and air reorganization. I have to think about that some more. Along the same line, I could list all the enemy units that could fly carpet bombing and ground strike missions. Opinions?

2 - The Threat column will show the total enemy bombing factors that could reach the hex as well as the best air-to-air number the enemy could achieve over the hex.

3 - All air units that could fly CAP will be listed at the bottom of the form.

4 - Clicking on a threatened hex (under Hex Location or using the insert map) will reduce the list of air units in the bottom list to those that can reach the threatened hex.

5 - Clicking on one of your units in the list at the bottom will assign that unit to fly CAP to the destination hex. That will be an On/Off toggle.

6 - After a unit is assigned to fly CAP, the Assigned column will show a count of units committed and their best air-to-air strength.

===
I do not expect the primary detailed map to be used here, just the insert map.

How I think this will work, is that you will go through all your major powers, and all the upcoming air missions between your current email and your next email. I doubt that you will need to review all 8 air missions at once, and you will want to delay making those decisions until you have the best info available. I provide more specifics on this exchange of emails in future posts.

So, for example, you look at all the threats from strategic bombing and decide if you want to fly CAP over one of the threatened hexes. Clicking on the hex shows the air units you have available and you select one or more. This should go rather quickly.

Fighter interceptions will be harder, but for now, please limit your discussion to CAP. I have other ideas for doing the interceptions and will present them (probably) later this week.






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Perfection is an elusive goal.

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RE: PBEM - 5/20/2009 7:04:57 AM   
Zorachus99


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I fear these forms.

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RE: PBEM - 5/20/2009 3:17:20 PM   
micheljq


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shannon V. OKeets

Here is another new page for PBEM's Standing Orders - my first pass at this.

CAP assignments are possible for each major power for each of the 8 air missions. You select a major power and then select an air mission. If you want a major power to never fly CAP, then the check box handles that.



I guess we should have the option of not using CAP each impulse because most of the time we don't use it. I think players try to have fighters that can intercept instead of doing CAP, using CAP only when you don't have the range on interceptions.

quote:



But if you do want to fly CAP in the upcoming impulse (where you are the non-phasing player), selecting an air mission will do several things:

1 - All threatened hexes will be identified for port attacks, strategic bombing, and ground support. For the other air missions there are far too many potential destination hexes to list them all. I might do something like list the enemy ATRs that could fly for paradrops, air transport, and air reorganization. I have to think about that some more. Along the same line, I could list all the enemy units that could fly carpet bombing and ground strike missions. Opinions?



That can be helpful, is it complicated to code?

quote:



4 - Clicking on a threatened hex (under Hex Location or using the insert map) will reduce the list of air units in the bottom list to those that can reach the threatened hex.



That can be helpful too.

quote:


===
I do not expect the primary detailed map to be used here, just the insert map.



Fine with me.

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Post #: 14
RE: PBEM - 5/20/2009 5:18:33 PM   
Froonp


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quote:

ORIGINAL: micheljq


quote:

ORIGINAL: Shannon V. OKeets

Here is another new page for PBEM's Standing Orders - my first pass at this.

CAP assignments are possible for each major power for each of the 8 air missions. You select a major power and then select an air mission. If you want a major power to never fly CAP, then the check box handles that.



I guess we should have the option of not using CAP each impulse because most of the time we don't use it. I think players try to have fighters that can intercept instead of doing CAP, using CAP only when you don't have the range on interceptions.

There is an option in MWiF, major power per major power, to ignore the CAP step for each given air mission. for example, you can say that China will never do any CAP, you can also say that the CW will never do CAP versus Carpet bombing.

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Post #: 15
RE: PBEM - 5/20/2009 6:47:13 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Froonp

quote:

ORIGINAL: micheljq


quote:

ORIGINAL: Shannon V. OKeets

Here is another new page for PBEM's Standing Orders - my first pass at this.

CAP assignments are possible for each major power for each of the 8 air missions. You select a major power and then select an air mission. If you want a major power to never fly CAP, then the check box handles that.



I guess we should have the option of not using CAP each impulse because most of the time we don't use it. I think players try to have fighters that can intercept instead of doing CAP, using CAP only when you don't have the range on interceptions.

There is an option in MWiF, major power per major power, to ignore the CAP step for each given air mission. for example, you can say that China will never do any CAP, you can also say that the CW will never do CAP versus Carpet bombing.


That option will not be used for PBEM. All CAP decisions will come from processing the Standing Orders.

In a PBEM game any decision that is listed as a Standing Order, will be made by the AI Assistant on behalf of the (usually) non-phasing player. The effect of this is that the phasing player will be able to continue making his own decisions (while the AIA intersperses them with SO decisions made on behalf of the non-phasing player) and send a large 'batch' of decisions in each email.

More decisions per email means fewer emails. Besides, it is boring to only make one or two decisions and then send off an email. I would like to have each email take from 1 to 2 hours of time for a player. He has to 'read' his opponent's email so he understands what new stuff has happened, then he makes his own decisions. Sometimes there will be little to do, or easy decisions to make, but on average I would like each 'session' to be in the 1-2 hour range.

I am basing this on the hundreds of chess games I have played by mail. In chess they option existed of saying: if you do X I will do Y. That doesn't really apply to MWIF. Nonetheless, the time duration seems about right to me.

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Perfection is an elusive goal.

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Post #: 16
RE: PBEM - 5/20/2009 6:58:26 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: micheljq

quote:



But if you do want to fly CAP in the upcoming impulse (where you are the non-phasing player), selecting an air mission will do several things:

1 - All threatened hexes will be identified for port attacks, strategic bombing, and ground support. For the other air missions there are far too many potential destination hexes to list them all. I might do something like list the enemy ATRs that could fly for paradrops, air transport, and air reorganization. I have to think about that some more. Along the same line, I could list all the enemy units that could fly carpet bombing and ground strike missions. Opinions?



That can be helpful, is it complicated to code?

quote:


===
I do not expect the primary detailed map to be used here, just the insert map.



Fine with me.


The difficulty of coding depends on what level of detail is shown. For example, paradrops are pretty easy to do, but air transport is not. That's because the transported unit does not have to be stacked with the transport at the start of the phase. A large transport (capable of carrying a corps/army) could have dozens of potential 'passengers' and showing that would be complex. The same is true for air reorganization.

Listing bombers that might fly in a carpet bombing or ground strike mission wouldn't be hard, but throwing in fighter escorts would be much more difficult. Perhaps I could just list all the escorts. The complexity derives from some fighters being able to support some bombers to some destination hexes, but not all bombers to all hexes.

As I said, I am still trying to figure this out. So I am open to any and all ideas about this.

What information would you like to have available (other than scanning the entire map on your own) when entering Standing Orders for CAP? Remember that this design decision will form the foundation for the SO for fighter interception (next in my list of things to figure out for PBEM).


_____________________________

Steve

Perfection is an elusive goal.

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Post #: 17
RE: PBEM - 5/20/2009 7:24:30 PM   
Mike Parker

 

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Steve,

Honestly for CAP I think the VAST majority of times it will be used is when there is a sensetive target that is beyond intercept range of your fighters (or at least some fighters).  I think the use of CAP will occur when folks think "I have this unit that is vulnerable and I really need to have air cover" and when you evaluate you say "I do not have any(enough) fighters within Intercept range, so I need to fly one or more birds in CAP".

In short then for CAP I wouldn't be too exhaustive in options of they are difficult to code, as I think CAP will be used sparingly, and when it is the hexes for CAP consideration will be few.

(in reply to Shannon V. OKeets)
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RE: PBEM - 5/20/2009 7:27:42 PM   
micheljq


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shannon V. OKeets

Listing bombers that might fly in a carpet bombing or ground strike mission wouldn't be hard, but throwing in fighter escorts would be much more difficult. Perhaps I could just list all the escorts. The complexity derives from some fighters being able to support some bombers to some destination hexes, but not all bombers to all hexes.

As I said, I am still trying to figure this out. So I am open to any and all ideas about this.

What information would you like to have available (other than scanning the entire map on your own) when entering Standing Orders for CAP? Remember that this design decision will form the foundation for the SO for fighter interception (next in my list of things to figure out for PBEM).



I don't know, showing potential hexes for Carpet bombing and ground strike is a beginning and can surely help. CAP can also be used against Port Attack, ground support, strategic bombing, air transport, reorganization by ATRs if I am not mistaken, but it's begins to be a lot more of potential work. As for the fighters maybe the player would have to figure out by himself what the opponent can bring in terms of fighters escorts, at least for now. That's what we do with the boardgame anyway.

It's difficult for me to say, haven't played WiF by email by myself, others who did could have better ideas.

I think I said PBEM 0% in the review because I tried Cyberboard and was discouraged by the complexity of playing a game PBEM. But now with the screenshots of MWiF on PBEM I begin to see it can be made more doable. I hope it helps.

(in reply to Shannon V. OKeets)
Post #: 19
RE: PBEM - 5/20/2009 9:34:42 PM   
paulderynck


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shannon V. OKeets


quote:

ORIGINAL: micheljq

quote:



But if you do want to fly CAP in the upcoming impulse (where you are the non-phasing player), selecting an air mission will do several things:

1 - All threatened hexes will be identified for port attacks, strategic bombing, and ground support. For the other air missions there are far too many potential destination hexes to list them all. I might do something like list the enemy ATRs that could fly for paradrops, air transport, and air reorganization. I have to think about that some more. Along the same line, I could list all the enemy units that could fly carpet bombing and ground strike missions. Opinions?



That can be helpful, is it complicated to code?

quote:


===
I do not expect the primary detailed map to be used here, just the insert map.



Fine with me.


The difficulty of coding depends on what level of detail is shown. For example, paradrops are pretty easy to do, but air transport is not. That's because the transported unit does not have to be stacked with the transport at the start of the phase. A large transport (capable of carrying a corps/army) could have dozens of potential 'passengers' and showing that would be complex. The same is true for air reorganization.

Listing bombers that might fly in a carpet bombing or ground strike mission wouldn't be hard, but throwing in fighter escorts would be much more difficult. Perhaps I could just list all the escorts. The complexity derives from some fighters being able to support some bombers to some destination hexes, but not all bombers to all hexes.

As I said, I am still trying to figure this out. So I am open to any and all ideas about this.

What information would you like to have available (other than scanning the entire map on your own) when entering Standing Orders for CAP? Remember that this design decision will form the foundation for the SO for fighter interception (next in my list of things to figure out for PBEM).


Well of course it would be wonderful to see all the targets and escorts and such. But I'd say all or nothing. Don't do Strat and Carpet Bombing if escorts and ATR missions are too formidable to undertake.


quote:

ORIGINAL: Mike Parker

Steve,

Honestly for CAP I think the VAST majority of times it will be used is when there is a sensetive target that is beyond intercept range of your fighters (or at least some fighters). I think the use of CAP will occur when folks think "I have this unit that is vulnerable and I really need to have air cover" and when you evaluate you say "I do not have any(enough) fighters within Intercept range, so I need to fly one or more birds in CAP".

In short then for CAP I wouldn't be too exhaustive in options of they are difficult to code, as I think CAP will be used sparingly, and when it is the hexes for CAP consideration will be few.

I agree entirely.

_____________________________

Paul

(in reply to Shannon V. OKeets)
Post #: 20
RE: PBEM - 5/20/2009 9:44:54 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

Posts: 17934
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From: Honolulu, Hawaii
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quote:

ORIGINAL: paulderynck


quote:

ORIGINAL: Shannon V. OKeets


quote:

ORIGINAL: micheljq

quote:



But if you do want to fly CAP in the upcoming impulse (where you are the non-phasing player), selecting an air mission will do several things:

1 - All threatened hexes will be identified for port attacks, strategic bombing, and ground support. For the other air missions there are far too many potential destination hexes to list them all. I might do something like list the enemy ATRs that could fly for paradrops, air transport, and air reorganization. I have to think about that some more. Along the same line, I could list all the enemy units that could fly carpet bombing and ground strike missions. Opinions?



That can be helpful, is it complicated to code?

quote:


===
I do not expect the primary detailed map to be used here, just the insert map.



Fine with me.


The difficulty of coding depends on what level of detail is shown. For example, paradrops are pretty easy to do, but air transport is not. That's because the transported unit does not have to be stacked with the transport at the start of the phase. A large transport (capable of carrying a corps/army) could have dozens of potential 'passengers' and showing that would be complex. The same is true for air reorganization.

Listing bombers that might fly in a carpet bombing or ground strike mission wouldn't be hard, but throwing in fighter escorts would be much more difficult. Perhaps I could just list all the escorts. The complexity derives from some fighters being able to support some bombers to some destination hexes, but not all bombers to all hexes.

As I said, I am still trying to figure this out. So I am open to any and all ideas about this.

What information would you like to have available (other than scanning the entire map on your own) when entering Standing Orders for CAP? Remember that this design decision will form the foundation for the SO for fighter interception (next in my list of things to figure out for PBEM).


Well of course it would be wonderful to see all the targets and escorts and such. But I'd say all or nothing. Don't do Strat and Carpet Bombing if escorts and ATR missions are too formidable to undertake.


quote:

ORIGINAL: Mike Parker

Steve,

Honestly for CAP I think the VAST majority of times it will be used is when there is a sensetive target that is beyond intercept range of your fighters (or at least some fighters). I think the use of CAP will occur when folks think "I have this unit that is vulnerable and I really need to have air cover" and when you evaluate you say "I do not have any(enough) fighters within Intercept range, so I need to fly one or more birds in CAP".

In short then for CAP I wouldn't be too exhaustive in options of they are difficult to code, as I think CAP will be used sparingly, and when it is the hexes for CAP consideration will be few.

I agree entirely.

Ok.

Here is where I stand on CAP presently:

1 - For port attacks, strategic bombing, and ground support, I will show the table I presented of threatened hexes (i.e., destination hexes). The player has to figure out what enemy air units might fly to those hexes, though he will guaranteed that at least 1 bomber is capable of attacking the hex.

2 - For paradrops, air transport, and air reorganization, I will show the ATRs and possible fighters/escorts (i.e., enemy air units). The player will have to figure out possible destination hexes to protect with CAP.

3 - For carpet bombing/ground strikes, I will show the tactical/strategic bombers and possible fighters/escorts. Again, the player will have to figure out possible destination hexes.

I will mock up the form for #2 and #3 and post it here when I get a chance.

_____________________________

Steve

Perfection is an elusive goal.

(in reply to paulderynck)
Post #: 21
RE: PBEM - 5/21/2009 3:18:45 PM   
Mike Parker

 

Posts: 581
Joined: 12/30/2008
From: Houston TX
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Shannon V. OKeets
Ok.

Here is where I stand on CAP presently:

1 - For port attacks, strategic bombing, and ground support, I will show the table I presented of threatened hexes (i.e., destination hexes). The player has to figure out what enemy air units might fly to those hexes, though he will guaranteed that at least 1 bomber is capable of attacking the hex.

2 - For paradrops, air transport, and air reorganization, I will show the ATRs and possible fighters/escorts (i.e., enemy air units). The player will have to figure out possible destination hexes to protect with CAP.

3 - For carpet bombing/ground strikes, I will show the tactical/strategic bombers and possible fighters/escorts. Again, the player will have to figure out possible destination hexes.

I will mock up the form for #2 and #3 and post it here when I get a chance.

I think this is more than sufficient for CAP. In the rare occasions its thought to be needed one can use the information to know which/how many CAP fighters to fly. Hopefully some of this code will be able to be used elsewhere too!

(in reply to Shannon V. OKeets)
Post #: 22
RE: PBEM - 5/21/2009 6:35:56 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

Posts: 17934
Joined: 5/19/2005
From: Honolulu, Hawaii
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Mike Parker


quote:

ORIGINAL: Shannon V. OKeets
Ok.

Here is where I stand on CAP presently:

1 - For port attacks, strategic bombing, and ground support, I will show the table I presented of threatened hexes (i.e., destination hexes). The player has to figure out what enemy air units might fly to those hexes, though he will guaranteed that at least 1 bomber is capable of attacking the hex.

2 - For paradrops, air transport, and air reorganization, I will show the ATRs and possible fighters/escorts (i.e., enemy air units). The player will have to figure out possible destination hexes to protect with CAP.

3 - For carpet bombing/ground strikes, I will show the tactical/strategic bombers and possible fighters/escorts. Again, the player will have to figure out possible destination hexes.

I will mock up the form for #2 and #3 and post it here when I get a chance.

I think this is more than sufficient for CAP. In the rare occasions its thought to be needed one can use the information to know which/how many CAP fighters to fly. Hopefully some of this code will be able to be used elsewhere too!

Yes.

I always try to do the easiest stuff first and then build on that. As I work I get a better understanding of not only what should be done but how to do it (i.e., code it).

_____________________________

Steve

Perfection is an elusive goal.

(in reply to Mike Parker)
Post #: 23
RE: PBEM - 5/21/2009 7:47:54 PM   
Lützow


Posts: 1476
Joined: 7/22/2008
From: Germany
Status: offline
I got a question about PBEM and a general concern about WiF.

How to break down a global scenario to a point where can it be managed by merely two players and still keep a sufficient level of depth and detail?
I haven't seen a wargame or boardgame adaption yet which could arrange this.

(in reply to Shannon V. OKeets)
Post #: 24
RE: PBEM - 5/21/2009 8:08:54 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

Posts: 17934
Joined: 5/19/2005
From: Honolulu, Hawaii
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Lützow

I got a question about PBEM and a general concern about WiF.

How to break down a global scenario to a point where can it be managed by merely two players and still keep a sufficient level of depth and detail?
I haven't seen a wargame or boardgame adaption yet which could arrange this.

I can think of several ways to interpret your question. Rather than having me make a guess, perhaps you could provide more specifics?

By "global scenario" I take it you mean a game that uses the entire world.

But what do you mean by 'managed'?

_____________________________

Steve

Perfection is an elusive goal.

(in reply to Lützow)
Post #: 25
RE: PBEM - 5/21/2009 8:52:12 PM   
Lützow


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Joined: 7/22/2008
From: Germany
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Yes, I meant the entire world. In Hearts of Iron the scenario got split between several AI opponents (or human players), in order to keep it still playable without sacrifying too much details, while turnbased boardgame adapations (thinking about Axies & Allies or A World at War) never found the right balance.

(in reply to Shannon V. OKeets)
Post #: 26
RE: PBEM - 5/21/2009 9:22:40 PM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

Posts: 17934
Joined: 5/19/2005
From: Honolulu, Hawaii
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Lützow

Yes, I meant the entire world. In Hearts of Iron the scenario got split between several AI opponents (or human players), in order to keep it still playable without sacrifying too much details, while turnbased boardgame adapations (thinking about Axies & Allies or A World at War) never found the right balance.

Hmmm, I think your question is more about player interface design than it is about PBEM.

There is a thread on Design of the Player Interface - it is long. I have written about this concern several times in that thread, though I do not know exactly which post(s).

You might also look at the posts I have made for the Players Manual. Here is an except (below).

HOWEVER, if you want to continue this discussion, please take it to one of those two threads, rather than this one.
===

8.0 Player Interface
8.1 Introduction to the Player Interface


The Matrix Games World in Flames player interface has many elements that are common to other computer war games. It has drop down menus, popup menus, detailed maps, global maps, units within hexagons, dozens of short cut keys defined, and it uses the cursor as a tool for examining and moving units. One of the things that make this player interface unusual is the vast number of forms used during game play with which players make decisions and/or review information on current game status.

The complexity of MWIF is clearly manifest in the number of: hexes in the world map (70,200), hex terrain types (12), units (~4000), unit types (72), optional rules (80), and phases(60) and subphases (92) in the sequence of play . Enabling players to access the information they need to make decisions and to understand the diverse aspects of the phases/subphases of the game necessitated a sophisticated player interface.

There are over 90 forms in the game, which are described in this section of the Players Manual. Most of the sections contain screen shots of the forms they describe. Equally useful, during game play you can click on any form’s help button to display context sensitive help for that form. What is then presented is the same text that is contained in this section.

Unique to MWIF are: map views (see section 8.4.3) and screen layouts (see section 8.6). Also MWIF uses Flyouts (see section 8.4.5) rather aggressively for selecting and manipulating units. Another form that I haven’t seen in other computer war games is the Selectable Units form (see section 8.7.1.20). Altogether, these 4 forms make viewing the map and units and selecting units for movement and combat fairly easy to do, despite the massive size of the game. You might also want to explore the Naval Review Details and Naval Review Summary forms (see sections 8.7.1.11 and 8.7.1.12 respectively), which simplify evaluating the disposition of naval forces and the movement of naval task forces.


_____________________________

Steve

Perfection is an elusive goal.

(in reply to Lützow)
Post #: 27
RE: PBEM - 5/21/2009 10:55:51 PM   
Lützow


Posts: 1476
Joined: 7/22/2008
From: Germany
Status: offline
Shannon, my concern is rather about the right balance of micromanagement and how to handle it in an entire world scenario which get split between two players. This is something which none of the boardgame adaptions I played so far got accomplished well. Sorry, if my question was ambiguous.

(in reply to Shannon V. OKeets)
Post #: 28
RE: PBEM - 5/22/2009 8:23:34 AM   
paulderynck


Posts: 3706
Joined: 3/24/2007
From: Canada
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Lützow

Shannon, my concern is rather about the right balance of micromanagement and how to handle it in an entire world scenario which get split between two players. This is something which none of the boardgame adaptions I played so far got accomplished well. Sorry, if my question was ambiguous.

It should be no harder to play this game PBEM 2-player as it is FTF 2-player. Yes there is a LOT to remember and it seems you always forget something (or maybe you can never make the "perfect" move) - but that's WiF. From what I 've seen of the game and the PBEM forms, it will all be there - your problem will be in finding sufficient time to achieve perfection.

_____________________________

Paul

(in reply to Lützow)
Post #: 29
RE: PBEM - 5/22/2009 8:37:29 AM   
Shannon V. OKeets

 

Posts: 17934
Joined: 5/19/2005
From: Honolulu, Hawaii
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Lützow

Shannon, my concern is rather about the right balance of micromanagement and how to handle it in an entire world scenario which get split between two players. This is something which none of the boardgame adaptions I played so far got accomplished well. Sorry, if my question was ambiguous.

MWIF (and WIF in general) addresses the vastness of the conflict in several ways:

1 - while land and air moves are hex based, naval movement is area based. You can move a naval unit from the east coast of the US to Europe using 4 "movement points" to traverse ~100 hexes.

2 - the basic scale of the game is corps/army for land units; using divisions is optional.

3 - adding all the light cruisers is optional.

4 - adding separate carrier air units is optional.

5 - the complexities of the rules can be reduced by not using the 80 optional rules.

The end result is that not using the optional rules cuts the number of units in half. That means much less micro-management.

But then not again, if you want to micro-manage, you can.



_____________________________

Steve

Perfection is an elusive goal.

(in reply to Lützow)
Post #: 30
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