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Armored Brigade II - Dev Diary #4: Motorized Infantry and Waypoint Editor

Published on March 27, 2024

Greetings Commanders!

Following up on the infantry improvements highlighted in our previous developer diary, the roar of engines heralds the arrival of motorized infantry as a novel force in Armored Brigade II. Motorized units combine the rapid mobility of mechanized transports with the adaptability of foot soldiers, enabling commanders to swiftly shift their forces to where they are most needed, be it for a surprise attack or to bolster a faltering defense. This category of unit was underrepresented in the original game, and their appearance not only facilitates more dynamic gameplay but also enriches the database with a greater variety of combat formations and support units. They exemplify a tactical trade-off between protection and mobility, balanced with affordability. These units enable rapid troop movement across the battlefield, presenting a cost-effective alternative to traditional APCs and IFVs, which are more heavily protected or equipped with greater firepower.

However, the real enabler is the new option to separate dismounts as a distinct formation from their organic transports, a feature highly anticipated by our community. The separation mechanic allows for nuanced tactical play; transports can be directed to safer locations once their precious cargo has disembarked, minimizing losses while maximizing offensive and defensive potentials. This feature not only facilitates the appropriate use of unarmored transports, such as trucks or jeeps, but also enables the recreation of tactics like the Soviet bronegrupa or experimentation with the motorized experience of the US 9th Infantry Division in the late Cold War. However, I would like to take this opportunity to highlight a mechanic often overlooked even by seasoned Armored Brigade players: using the Advance command while dismounts are disembarked enables infantrymen to move ahead, with their vehicles following in support. To make this effective, simply allow them time to reorganize.

Next, we want to introduce the Waypoint Editor, a game-changing tool designed to give you more control over the movement and behavior of your units. This feature allows commanders to meticulously plan the path of their units, editing waypoints and orders along a route where units can adjust their standard operating procedures, formations, and even engage in predefined actions like disembarking and separating from their transports. The editor is designed to be intuitive, making it easy for both veterans and newcomers to plan their strategies down to the smallest detail.

To complement the waypoint editor, we have also implemented waypoint synchronization. This feature enables formations to coordinate their movements, ensuring that they arrive at their objectives simultaneously. This is crucial for executing complex strategies that rely on timing, such as coordinated attacks from multiple directions or simultaneous strikes on different enemy positions. Synchronization ensures that no unit goes in alone unless specifically intended, bolstering the effectiveness of combined arms tactics.

This level of control empowers commanders to execute complex maneuvers that were previously difficult to manage, bringing a new dimension of planning to Armored Brigade II. By synchronizing the actions of diverse formations, players can create synergies on the battlefield, exploiting timing and coordination to outmaneuver their opponent. Moreover, this is part of a broader development plan, as these features serve as enablers for AI scripting. This will eventually allow for greater control over scenario creation, and enable the development of predictable tutorials. We will delve deeper into this aspect in one of our future developer diary installments.

Both of these features stem from our commitment to providing a deep, strategic experience that mirrors the complexities of real-world military operations. The waypoint editor offers the flexibility to navigate the battlefield with precision, while waypoint synchronization brings a new layer of tactical coordination, allowing for more deliberate and impactful engagements. We believe these updates will significantly enhance the gameplay experience in Armored Brigade II, offering players more tools to craft their approach to each mission.

It should also be mentioned that alongside these substantial improvements, a series of changes, perhaps superficially irrelevant at first glance, have been implemented to enhance the overall gameplay experience. A notable improvement is the overhaul of our road march formation and pathfinding algorithms, designed to facilitate smoother unit movements across the battlefield. Additionally, new parameters have been introduced into the database, such as mobility and acceleration, which further refine the behavior and performance of units. Each change, no matter the scale, is aimed at providing a richer, more detailed simulation of warfare. As always, we are eager to hear your feedback on these new features. Your input is invaluable in our ongoing efforts to improve and expand the game.

Stay tuned for more updates and developments in our next DevDiary. Until then, let the engines roar and your strategies unfold on the digital battleground

Target Games
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