From: Colorado Springs
I've tried to lower the learning curve. This works especially well with a touch screen if you're doing basic play. It works through an iPad, but the remote desktop software adds in an extra layer of complexity, although it DOES allow you to very quickly zoom in. I can now see a couple of people on a couch passing an iPad back and forth, playing Waterloo, Arracourt, or some other game with a small map. I can also play games Solo against Elmer and expect a better fight. I can also allow Elmer to move some of the units for me with me giving broad direction, so I can play larger scenarios, I'm playing Red Thunder 1988 as the Russians right now using my iPad. I suspect that if Matrix puts a touch screen running TOAW up at the next board games conference, it's got the potential to sell quite a few copies.
With TOAW 3.4, I've tried to let you swallow the elephant one bite at a time. One mode allows you to just drag the counters around the screen, and they do the 'right' thing, they either move or attack. You can then bring up the combat planner and walk through the combats and add artillery if needed, and fine tune your attacks. You can ignore the air game, and 'Elmer' will do a reasonable job of handling it. The 'ToolTips' add in information about how the terrain will effect your units. Supply now 'makes sense.' It decreases similar to the way that trucks traveling over the terrain would, instead of the arcane step rules of the original.
I hope I've lessened the learning curve to where you could teach TOAW to a 10 year old without them getting tangled up in the details like I did when I started, I tried to learn the entire manual before playing, which took a lot of the fun out of the game.
Of course, the veteran players can ignore all the new features, and play without tooltips, with right click popping up a menu, etc. If you're playing a PBEM game against another human, that interface makes more sense since you need more control.
TOAW IV Programmer
My comments are my own, and do not represent the views of any other person or entity. Nothing that I say should be construed in any way as a promise of anything.