I have designed a Wargame, the rules are reasonably simple but I am very unskilled at programming. I am normally able to brute force myself through this sort of problem, but the game is sufficiently unusual that this has proven to be problematic.
Much of the game revolves around the concept of ‘squads’, but squads are not the same as in many games like warhammer. They are automatically formed when units of the same type (identical units) are adjacent to each-other. Squads can be created and taken apart freely, but always attack together and are attacked together. Likewise, attacks are generally based on the number of units in the attacking squad (it is a % of attacking units that hit).
How realistic is this to do, or should I just give up on the program. I no longer have absurd amounts of time to dump into a project like this and just brute-force the problem.
First of all you have to realize what Vassal tries to do and what it
Vassal if fundamentally an electronic substitute for a physical board
and game components. Although there is some provision for
automation, it is not designed to execute major game mechanics, it
does not enforce game rules, and it does not provide a computer
So that means you shouldn’t have to do any “programming”.
On Jan 7, 2010, at 9:08 PM, RysanMarquise wrote:
Well, you shouldn’t need to program anything. You should be able to
assemble your game components using the interface.
Fine. This should not be a problem. All you need to provide is a
board (there are existing hex and square grids available) and images
for the unit counters. Everything else that you mention is something
that the user of the game does by following the rules of the game.
So you don’t need to do anything in Vassal about them.
Create your map and counters.
The only thing that is somewhat programming like is the use of
prototypes for your counters. Since you will have a number of
counters that are similar, it is a good idea to base them off a
common prototype. That way if you decide to add additional traits or
features to the counters, you only have to modify the single
prototype instead of editing every one of the units.
Well, there are different design philosophies about that. There have
been some threads about that in the past.
One thing to be aware of is that you don’t want the automation to go
to the point where it is hard for players to undo mistakes. If that
happens you end up with perplexed and unhappy users. So rather than
the logical extreme, it is perhaps best to strive for a practical
balance. And try to make the automated parts happen under user
control as much as possible.
Sounds like a good plan.
Once you have the basics you can always add reasonable automation later.