From: metro Chicago, Illinois, USA
Coder Diary #21 -- Transparent Markers
Something I've always hated about JT 2D graphics (in all of his games): terrain markers (mines, trenches, IPs, etc.) as counters, as in:
Don't the terrain markers look too much like unit counters? At a glance, how does one easily distinguish the actual fighting forces from the terrain markers?
Here's the same screenshot with terrain markers made "transparent":
Isn't it now much easier to discern the actual combat units?
In future games, and eventually too for JTCS updates, we have implemented Transparent Markers like so:
You can still have the old-style markers-as-counters if you want, but you will also have the option to make them transparent.
Note the Ctrl-M hot key assigned to this feature. (Ctrl-M used to toggle the top-level Menu, but was retired when we fixed the top-level Menu in place.)
(In the previous screenshot, the sharp-eyed among you might notice a few new Options listed. We'll have more to say about those in future Coder Diaries.)
Here's an example of Transparent Markers in action:
And here's another, near the end of a particularly brutal meeting engagement:
Look at all of those wreck markers!
You haven't heard much from the Dev Team or me lately. On vacation? Yes, some of us. (The lucky ones, present company excepted. For me, it's nothing but Nose to the Grindstone, and All IT All the Time. ) Hard at work on Middle East, the next game in a lineup of forthcoming JTCS sequels? Yes, all of us, more or less.
If you think we've exhausted the possibilities for this game series, think again. Already, there's a growing list of new features. Don't worry. No radical changes. The more things change, the more the game series remains essentially the same.
We'll have more to say about the new features, and the Middle East game, in the coming months. When do we hope to release Middle East? For now, we're looking at a Q1 2015 release. With still more sequels later that year and in the years to follow.
What about the Campaign Series -- East Front, West Front, Rising Sun? Will there be new updates, will these new features be implemented in those games too? Yes, in part. Where appropriate, some but not all new features will be retrofitted onto those games also. When?
You might know that, soon, we will be releasing a JTCS 2.02 bug-fix update. For various reasons, we are being conservative with the JTCS changes, fixing what really needs fixing, but holding back on the non-essentials and/or the stuff with the potential to break things, hence requiring lots of testing. Which we don't have time for right now. No, we need to focus on new game development now. We can't keep patching, patching, patching endlessly the older games in the series for free. Gotta pay the bills, gotta push out new games for sale. We're sure you understand.
I'd really like to be posting this newest Coder Diary in a new forum devoted to the newer games in the sequel series. But they say it's not time for that just yet. By posting Middle East & beyond stuff here, we don't want you to expect implementation of that stuff in the older JTCS games any time soon. Later rather than sooner. Sorry.
So, when will we release the anticipated JTCS 2.10 mega-update, the update with many if not all the new features, but more importantly a thoroughgoing overhaul of the game data (and possibly some graphics spiff-ups too)? For now, we are looking at sometime in 2016. It's a long time to wait, sure. But we're also sure you'll enjoy the new games released earlier in the meantime. Speaking of time...
Until the next time...
< Message edited by berto -- 7/31/2014 11:21:32 AM >