[Abandoned] Research & Conquer

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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby -=- Tanarri -=- on Fri Feb 22, 2013 11:26 pm

No problem at all for the comments, I'm just happy that someone's still working on the map. I likely would have taken it over myself and worked on it bit by bit if I had the ability, but I'm just not anywhere near skilled enough with Photoshop to make a map. Thanks for all your work on the map, I for one really appreciate it and I hope this map gets the serious gameplay it deserves once it gets to Beta.

Here are some thoughts that pop out right away. If I can dig up some more time over the next week I'll give it another look over and see what else I can find, unless you've already got the next version out by then.

- The knobs look a lot better, great work! :)

- "Only the Most Advanced Shall Triumph" is touching, or really really close to touching, the screw on the right. It looks like maybe the right screw is a couple pixels further in than the left from the border, so moving it over to match may fix the problem.

- For the colours of the techs, I think what you have there looks good then if there's colour blind test issues. It's also admittedly a lot easier to tell the difference at a glance even without colour blindness.

- I like how the bridges look now, they have always looked a bit big for how the rest of the map texture looks. Good work :)

- It's nice to see the 888's are fitting well. If you've kept the same size of map, then they'll fit perfectly well there as well... they get a bit cramped, but they're all clear from what I recall of previous versions of the map.

- Mining's bonus explanation seems to be have changed to +3 instead of +2 per mine

- The sigs looks nicer and you can read them now, which is great. Thanks!

I think that covers it for now. Keep up the good work Isaiah :)
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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby -=- Tanarri -=- on Mon Mar 18, 2013 2:32 pm

Hey Isaiah, just wondering how the progress on this is going? I noticed it's been almost a month since the last update and just wanted to provide some glimmer of interest in the map for encouragement :)
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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby ender516 on Mon Mar 18, 2013 8:56 pm

Echoing the glimmer...
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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby isaiah40 on Mon Mar 18, 2013 10:54 pm

I am still working on this. I should have an update by Friday! :D
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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby -=- Tanarri -=- on Wed Mar 20, 2013 5:15 am

Yay! Good to hear :)

Do we have anyone who's willing to work on the XML once the graphics are done? I don't know if anyone has access to the old XML that Oliver did. I tried PMing him a couple weeks back for it but haven't heard back from him. I know he doesn't visit CC very much anymore, so it may be quite a while before he returns the PM.
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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby ender516 on Wed Mar 20, 2013 11:46 am

I might be persuaded to look at the XML, especially if the old stuff is available. Even if it isn't, we might be able to find it via the Wayback Machine.
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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby -=- Tanarri -=- on Thu Mar 21, 2013 12:56 pm

That's good to hear, ender :)

I tried looking back through the thread, but the account Oliver was using to host the XML was closed, so it's no longer available through the link that was posted in the thread. I thought I had a copy of the XML myself, but when I went looking for it, I found never downloaded a copy for myself and only ever looked at it through the link Oliver posted. If there's some other way to get a copy of the old XML, that would be great. Most of it was completed already, with a few modifications being needed. I had noted a few of the required modifications a few times in the thread and can easily find the list again if needed. Some recent changes to code have also made some other changes necessary and will greatly help reduce the bulk of the code.

Anyway, it's good to hear that someone may be willing to take a look into it. I may be able to help a bit with it myself if a worst case scenario ends up happening, but my time is very limited these days and for me to even do a portion of the code would end up taking months at best. I'm also limited in my understanding of the coding system.
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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby ender516 on Thu Mar 21, 2013 9:25 pm

Well, sadly, the XML didn't get picked up by the Wayback Machine. So unless someone else downloaded it and still has it, I guess we are starting over.
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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby isaiah40 on Thu Mar 21, 2013 9:57 pm

If either one of you ender and Tanarri want to do the XML that will be great!!

On another note, I'm a little behind this week, so an update will be forthcoming this weekend, not tomorrow like I was wanting. :(
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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby -=- Tanarri -=- on Fri Mar 22, 2013 11:21 am

Well, I took a look into my own little "Wayback Machine" on the really off chance that I would have thought to save some contact info for Oliver when I left CC and it turns out I did. Hopefully the contact info is good and he still has the XML :)
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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby ender516 on Fri Mar 22, 2013 11:31 am

-=- Tanarri -=- wrote:Well, I took a look into my own little "Wayback Machine" on the really off chance that I would have thought to save some contact info for Oliver when I left CC and it turns out I did. Hopefully the contact info is good and he still has the XML :)

=D> [-o<
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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby isaiah40 on Mon Mar 25, 2013 12:55 pm

I'm still working on the update! I had to go in a slightly different direction for the region borders as it was looking rather cramped with the symbols - and I only had the mine symbol on - 888's and region names. I should be able to post something here shortly. [-o<
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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby koontz1973 on Mon Mar 25, 2013 1:04 pm

How about just a post. Anything really would be nice just to see what direction you are taking this in.
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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby -=- Tanarri -=- on Mon Mar 25, 2013 1:06 pm

koontz1973 wrote:How about just a post. Anything really would be nice just to see what direction you are taking this in.


Yeah, something today would be great just to see how things are progressing.
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Re: Research & Conquer [22 Feb 2013] v25 Pg 86

Postby isaiah40 on Mon Mar 25, 2013 1:37 pm

Here is the update. I am trying hexagons for the regions as to keep the map clear and easy to read. This means that there will be a reduction of regions, but for gameplay and graphical clarity I believe this is somewhat the direction I need to go in. As you can see the mining symbols (which I have changed) are easy to see with the region name and 888. I have included the small map for now.

I may have to make the small 80% of the large to make sure the 888's fit in the gauges. The 888's on the selector knobs on the small can be placed around the outside of the plates, so I'm not too concerned about those. So what do you think??

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Small
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Re: Research & Conquer [25 Mar 2013] v26 Pg 87

Postby -=- Tanarri -=- on Mon Mar 25, 2013 4:42 pm

I don't agree with the direction you're going with for the borders. The 888's were all fit in for the previous map design, albeit a bit cramped. The main concern I have is the reduction in number of territories. During gameplay the land territories were very intentionally kept high in number to allow for longer contact times and for the conscription techs to have more significance. Also, the reduction in the number of homeland territories will also affect the gameplay, since it will be easier to take the homeland bonuses. I'm guessing the mining regions were also reduced, which also would affect the gameplay.

I like the way the hexes look though, as they do look a lot cleaner. I also like the mining icons and think you've done a good job on them. I can't remember if they're still approving supersized maps, but if they are, do you think super sizing the map in exchange for more hexes would be a viable option? As another option, it looks like there's quite a bit of open area with the current hex size. Do you think the hexes could be shrunk and the mining icons moved to beside the 888's or the territory name? I think the old territory count was 174 for land territories and by rough estimate, it looks like the current design has around 120. I just think that's too significant of a drop and it would affect the gameplay of the map negatively.

Overall, visually it's look quite nice, I'm just really concerned about the gameplay ramifications of such a large drop in territory count.
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Re: Research & Conquer [25 Mar 2013] v26 Pg 87

Postby isaiah40 on Mon Mar 25, 2013 6:11 pm

Thanks Tanarri! I'll continue to play around with the hex's and work at getting the region count back up along with all the Homeland regions. I may request to go larger and use this current large - maybe go a tad smaller - and then go about 10% larger.
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Re: Research & Conquer [25 Mar 2013] v26 Pg 87

Postby ender516 on Mon Mar 25, 2013 7:54 pm

The Hive makes good use of space by using hexagons that are squashed vertically. Could that help here?
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Re: Research & Conquer [25 Mar 2013] v26 Pg 87

Postby -=- Tanarri -=- on Tue Mar 26, 2013 11:05 am

Taking a look at the Hive and the current version of this map, I think it may work if the 888 is put slightly to the left and the mining icon is put to the right of the 888. This is presuming the numbers are either center or right aligned. If they're left aligned, then the mining icon should go on the left. The idea being that if there's ever 1000+ troops on a spot it won't cover the icon.

A few other random thoughts I just caught as well:

* Whenever a symbol is figured out for the capitals, it should be added to the legend
* I think the current symbol could use some work as I don't think it fits very well with the asthetics of the map. I'm not sure exactly what it is, possibly the pastel colour or possibly the size of the star. I think more likely the size of te star, though it certainly makes it much easier to identify the capitals.
* Depending on how easy/blatantly obvious we care to make the map, we may want to add an example of a highlighted homeland territory to the legend.
* Should the conscription researches specify "+x for y terr.", or instead of terr, maybe terrs, territs, etc? I know space is a consideration here and this is again a question of how easy/obvious we want to make things. This taking into consideration that this map is not likely to be a map many newbs will play on.
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Re: Research & Conquer [25 Mar 2013] v26 Pg 87

Postby ender516 on Tue Mar 26, 2013 12:10 pm

IIRC, the centering of troop numbers goes like this: one to three characters are centered on the given coordinates, while longer strings start from the three-character position and stretch to the right as far as necessary. The color code if present counts as one character. So put the mining icon on the left, because long strings hang out to the right.

For a capital icon, many real world maps use a star with a circle in the center, or more properly, a circle with a star peeking out from behind. (Sometimes there is an enclosing circle as well.)
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Re: Research & Conquer [25 Mar 2013] v26 Pg 87

Postby isaiah40 on Sun Mar 31, 2013 3:34 pm

I finally got a major update this time round.

- Redid the hex's, made the regions use 2 hex's. I think this makes it much cleaner and I am only missing 3 regions from the original, which I believe is permissable.
- Added in the mining icons to the map, they fit in the hex's with the 888's and region name, plus they are easy to see.
- Expanded the plate and included the game-play instructions on it, and applied the engraved look to the instructions as well to keep consistancy.
- Changed the "mining +3" on the selector knob to read "Mining +2 per (Mining icon)
- Redid the landscape as I had to move the eastern river up to maintain basically the same region count to the homeland as the original.

Over all I believe this is a much cleaner look and easy to read.

Large:
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image


And the Small so you can see how it will look like with the 888's (only applied to the homeland regions, the rest of the map will look similar):
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Re: Research & Conquer [31 Mar 2013] v27 Pg 88

Postby OliverFA on Sun Mar 31, 2013 4:49 pm

I want to thank Isaiah for continuing the work on this map. I really, really appreciate your effort making this map a reality. You deserve a big thank you for all your effort :)

I have been asked if I can redo the XML for the new image or at least provide the old code. I will make the new versión. It will be a pleasure to see this map finally reaching the final stage after.. how many? I think 3 and a half years. Seeing it finally happening will make me so happy :)

And thanks to everybody who has believed in this map for all this time, with their support, their comments, their criticisms, and any other way of contributing. Without your interest this map would have just died. Thank you so much.
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Re: Research & Conquer [31 Mar 2013] v27 Pg 88

Postby ender516 on Sun Mar 31, 2013 8:27 pm

Glad to see you back at this, OliverFA. I was willing to attempt the XML, but it would have been a lot of work to get back to where you left off.
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Re: Research & Conquer [31 Mar 2013] v27 Pg 88

Postby -=- Tanarri -=- on Sun Mar 31, 2013 10:53 pm

OliverFA wrote:I want to thank Isaiah for continuing the work on this map. I really, really appreciate your effort making this map a reality. You deserve a big thank you for all your effort :)

I have been asked if I can redo the XML for the new image or at least provide the old code. I will make the new versión. It will be a pleasure to see this map finally reaching the final stage after.. how many? I think 3 and a half years. Seeing it finally happening will make me so happy :)

And thanks to everybody who has believed in this map for all this time, with their support, their comments, their criticisms, and any other way of contributing. Without your interest this map would have just died. Thank you so much.


Welcome back Oliver, I'm glad I was able to get back in contact with you :) A big thank you from me to Isaiah, as well as you Oliver for coming back to the project. I'm really looking forward to being able to play on this map after providing feedback on it for more than 3 years. Just out of curiousity I just checked and this map has been in development since September 2008, more than 4 1/2 years ago. It's been really great to see this map starting to get regular updates again and looking quite close to being finished graphically.

Anyway, onwards to commenting on the latest update... :)
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Re: Research & Conquer [25 Mar 2013] v26 Pg 87

Postby -=- Tanarri -=- on Mon Apr 01, 2013 12:01 am

isaiah40 wrote:I finally got a major update this time round.

- Redid the hex's, made the regions use 2 hex's. I think this makes it much cleaner and I am only missing 3 regions from the original, which I believe is permissable.
- Added in the mining icons to the map, they fit in the hex's with the 888's and region name, plus they are easy to see.
- Expanded the plate and included the game-play instructions on it, and applied the engraved look to the instructions as well to keep consistancy.
- Changed the "mining +3" on the selector knob to read "Mining +2 per (Mining icon)
- Redid the landscape as I had to move the eastern river up to maintain basically the same region count to the homeland as the original.

Over all I believe this is a much cleaner look and easy to read.


I have to say, this version is looking a lot more polished, great work on a major update to the graphics Isaiah! :) =D>

Here are my thoughts:

* The current hex system looks great and I agree it's a much better use of the space. The 888s look nicely centered with enough space and I don't see any problems getting the rest of them in there with the icons.
* Good catch on the mining bonus, I totally didn't notice it had switched to +3.
* "Hold a capital" bonus in the legend should be reworded to something like "Per capital held" or "For each capital held", since holding multiple capitals will give you multiple bonuses.
* I'm still wondering if we should figure out some better way of wording the conscription bonuses and, now that I look at it, possibly the Deep Mining bonus as well, even if it's reworded to 'Doubles Mining Bonus'. For the conscriptions, I've always wondered if the current description is unclear as to whether Open Conscription overrides Secret Conscription. Also as previously mentioned, I also wonder if adding 'terr.', 'territ.', or some other abbreviation of territory/territories at the end of the descriptions would help add some clarity for newbs.
* I realized there were no mentions of what's impassable on the map. I know it's pretty standard to consider rivers and mountains impassable on the site, but perhaps these should be added to the legend? I liked how it was divided previously, where the bonus structure was on the left side (perhaps this is where the impassables could go?) and the various what-attacks-what rules are on the right. I think that divide makes it easier to read the instructions.
* Somewhere along the way "West" got turned from green to blue. Now both "West" and "North" are the same colour. The "West" should be changed back to a green highlight/glow.
* "Sabatoge" should be spelled "Sabotage"
* Looking back one version at the small map at how the 888's fit onto the dials (particularly the blue 888 for East), I'm wondering if it would look better if the dials were placed on rectangular plates instead of the current rounded ones.

I think that covers it for now. The only other thing I've been wondering, which I'm having serious doubts of being a good idea at this stage of development, is whether it would be good to intentionally specialize the various homelands towards different research lines making more sense. For me, I see there being three different main types of research strategies. The first is to own your homeland and sit there researching the different permanent bonuses while stacking and going for Doomsday. The second is to go the mining bonus route and to research mining as soon as possible and take as many mines as possible. The third is to go the conscription route and try to take as many land spaces as possible while researching the conscription techs.

We could pick two homelands and give them some easier nearby land to take for the conscription tech route and reduce the number of mines in the area; pick another two homelands which have less land ("SouthWest" and either "West" or "East" seem to lend themselves well) and give them a higher concentration of mines for the mining route; and then the remaining two homelands we could have an average number of mines in their area, however make the neutrals a bit higher in their area so it's more difficult to take the territories, which will encourage players to sit and stack, especially since the extra neutrals would provide them with extra protection.

The problem with making these sorts of changes at this point is it could arguably send the map back to Gameplay stage, depending on how the cartographers feel about the changes and how major they appear. The benefit is it could offer another dimension to the gameplay, particularly for those players who play the map more often.

Anyway, looking forward to hearing what you guys think of all the above, time for me to head for bed :)
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Major -=- Tanarri -=-
 
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