[DEV] Ahistorical Scenarios

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HexCode
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[DEV] Ahistorical Scenarios

Post by HexCode » 2022-07-16 21:00, Saturday

STRICTLY PRIVATELY AVAILABLE CONTENT: FINAL VERSION

Due to the unmistakably vindictive behavior of certain video wargamers who have gone to great lengths to lodge a copyright complaint with MediaFire, I've decided to remove the "offending" content. In the future, the content this topic is dedicated to will only be potentially accessible (absolutely NO guarantees) via private arrangements to be explored in the context of PMs specifically addressed to me.

IF YOU'RE WONDERING...

In a nutshell:

--- I'm a board wargamer.
--- I invariably engage in all-human wargame play.
--- I'm an "SSI-heterodox" designer of content playable under PGF.

If you're still curious...

[EPH] MY "Hobby"...
viewtopic.php?f=95&t=174&start=250#p14742

TECHNICAL SETUP

The ZIP archive's size is about 20.3 MB. Following its "procurement", just UNZIP (i.e., decompress) the archive and place the revealed folder structure onto your preferred storage medium (e.g., hard disk / drive). All files exhibit date / time stamp "2022-10-02 23:00".

If you happen to have a prior version of this content, PITCH IT ! Do NOT mix and match files !

PLAY ACTIVATION

--- Double-click executable file CDP.EXE. A square pop-up screen will present you with two blue colored rectangles and two red colored ones. Same color rectangles are indistinguishable in their play activation consequences.

--- Single-click on either one of the two different colored rectangles. Unique play activation consequences will follow.

THE BIG, BIG PICTURE

a) All content supports scenarios playable in Standalone Mode. There're NO campaigns here.

b) All scenarios are intended for play strictly against the engine's AI Module at its ENHANCED (skill) setting.

c) Human players always lead the fortunes of Side 0.

DESIGN HIGHLIGHTS

1) PGF's technical interface (e.g., UI & executable) has been subjected to extensive, content-sensitive edits.

2) The content's inspiration can be traced back to Avalon Hill's "Blitzkrieg" board wargame.

The AH Blitzkrieg Connection
viewtopic.php?f=10&t=605

describes that good ol' wargame in great detail.

Among other things, the content demonstrates that video wargaming's technical machinery can be fruitfully employed to acknowledge and even strengthen the Hobby's "retro" connection with yesteryear's board wargames.

3) The maps have been "borrowed" from SSI's PG1 / AG. Nevertheless, they have also been subjected to alterations principally involving Fortifications and Impassable Desert / Ridge terrain.

4) Unit Iconic Representations (UIRs) largely adhere to NATO symbology.

5) Each scenario displays victory conditions adhering to the following, common format:

v = Iv ONLY @ MaxT = xx

to be understood as

Side 0 wins if and only if it scores an Instantaneous Victory before the end of Turn xx

The content entails 40 battles (i.e., scenarios), evenly split between Blue and Red (human) "attackers".

INTENDED BATTLE PLAY MODE

The practical meaningfulness of stated Victory Conditions is inextricably intertwined and ultimately depends on the following, consciously aimed at battle realities and ways:

Optional Features

WEATHER: ON
SUPPLY: ON
HIDDEN UNITs: ON

Both Sides

New Unit Purchases: NONE

Unit Strength Factor Ceiling: TEN (10)

Unit Accumulated
Quality Point Ceiling: 299

AI Side

Play Difficulty Setting: ENHANCED

Battlefield Posture: DEFENSIVE

Support: FIFTY (50) POINTS PER TURN

Unit Transports: NONE WHATSOEVER

Anchored Unit /
Static Inf(antry) /
OH_Garrison
Utilization: ENTRENCHMENT LEVEL NINE (9)

OH_Garrison: TWENTY (20) STRENGTH FACTORS

Human Side

Victory Conditions: INSTANTANEOUS

Support: NONE SPECIFIED WHATSOEVER

Elite Replacements: NONE

Regular Replacements: NONE WHEN UNIT STRENGTH IS GREATER THAN SIX (6) FACTORS (Self-Policed)

Unit Disbandments: NONE

WARNING

The intended play experience is VERY DIFFERENT from SSI's video wargaming ways and preferences.
Last edited by HexCode on 2022-10-04 10:21, Tuesday, edited 12 times in total.

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Re: [DEV] Ahistorical Scenarios

Post by Jorge44 » 2022-07-18 03:35, Monday

Hello HexCode: :howdy

I just tried your work and I have to say it's just great :notworthy :notworthy :notworthy :notworthy :notworthy :notworthy . He had never played anything like it, at least on PC. I do not have enough words of thanks, I am amazed. Please continue to unleash your creativity. I honestly think something like his work was missing in PGF. Just great :clap :clap :clap :clap :clap :clap . Take care of yourself and do not hesitate to write to me: Your friend Jorge :howdy

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[DEV] Many Thanks

Post by HexCode » 2022-07-18 08:58, Monday

:howdy Jorge,

Thank you very much for your words of appreciation. To tell you the truth, I debated with myself quite a bit before taking the... brave :) step to "publicly" release these scenarios to the Hobby at Large. Let's see what happens next, if anything... :evil :)

Take care my friend.

HC
Last edited by HexCode on 2022-10-03 03:23, Monday, edited 3 times in total.

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Re: [DEV] Ahistorical Scenarios

Post by Cat Leon » 2022-07-18 10:11, Monday

:howdy BTW. If you maked new EXE you could eliminate one of PG1 & PGF shortcomings and to add small icon of aircraft-carrier for RED side in STACKICN.BMP... :huh
Leon, the friendly cat who walks by himself, plays PGF, PG2 & OG and bores busy people!

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[DEV] Subroutine Not Identified Yet

Post by HexCode » 2022-07-18 17:55, Monday

Cat Leon wrote:
2022-07-18 10:11, Monday
BTW. If you made a new EXE you could eliminate one of PG1 & PGF shortcomings and add small icon of aircraft-carrier for RED side in STACKICN.BMP...
Unfortunately ! :( PGF's executable hasn't been re-programmed from scratch.
Last edited by HexCode on 2022-07-27 23:02, Wednesday, edited 1 time in total.

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[DEV] A "House" Rule: Self-Policing It

Post by HexCode » 2022-07-27 05:34, Wednesday

"House" Rules

By way of background...

House Rules: Basic Concept
viewtopic.php?f=95&t=503#p8285

House Rules: Scenario Uniqueness Enhancements
viewtopic.php?f=95&t=503#p8286

House Rules: FoW Examples
viewtopic.php?f=95&t=503#p8287

Self-Policing Regular Replacements

A human player trying the content this topic is dedicated to has been asked to voluntarily adhere to the following restriction during play:

Regular Replacements: NONE WHEN UNIT STRENGTH IS GREATER THAN SIX (6) FACTORS (Self-Policed)

Clearly, self-policing adherence to the above restriction amounts to introducing a "house" rule into play.

Do You Find It Hard ?

Is there anyone who wishes the restriction mentioned above to have been "hardcoded" into the User Interface ? I mean, players who, for whatever reason(s), find it hard to reliably police themselves in the thick of battle... Well, only... Merlin knows how to do that ! :)

"Accidental" Elite Replacements ?

The Scenario Panel button which controls unit Elite Replacements has been disabled, of course. However, a human player may still procure such replacements by invoking the keystroke combo "Shift+R". If so, such gotten replacements would hardly come across as genuinely... "accidental"; me thinks ! :)
Last edited by HexCode on 2022-09-28 08:38, Wednesday, edited 2 times in total.

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[DEV] Vindictive Behavior

Post by HexCode » 2022-07-27 22:51, Wednesday

To repeat:

Due to the unmistakably vindictive behavior of certain video wargamers who have gone to great lengths to lodge a copyright complaint with MediaFire, I've decided to remove the "offending" content. In the future, the content this topic is dedicated to will only be potentially accessible (absolutely NO guarantees) via private arrangements to be explored in the context of PMs specifically addressed to me.

By the way, this has been my approach to the "hobby" for something like 25 years now... :bonk In some way, the copyright complaint is a clear indication of the fundamental incompatibility, even... hostility, existing between my PGF-CDP ventures and the SSI-like ventures which have long characterized SSI's 5 Star General Hobby at Large ! :2cents

To summarize: Unknown content downloaders will be getting ABSOLUTELY NOTHING out of me if I can help it. EVER !!

Prior to the removal of the "offending" content, the said content had been downloaded 30 times. Big deal ! The only feedback I'm interested in is one expressed in writing ! Too bad for the functionally illiterate... :lol
Last edited by HexCode on 2022-10-04 10:24, Tuesday, edited 1 time in total.

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[DEV] Extreme Emotional States...

Post by HexCode » 2022-08-06 01:40, Saturday

Prescient !

Courtesy of Father Time's Jurassic Archives...
Let's start with an example of extreme hobbyist precaution:

a) The very niche nature of H2H-AC wouldn't have made its hobbyists targets of legal action provided one, of course, was dealing with a rational, profit-maximizing entity and not some... vengeful, even psychotic, Developer !!

b) Almost all H2H-AC scenarios were privately available and certainly NOT downloadable. Yeah, that's a good, private defense too...

c) All H2H-AC PBEM play was, well, private, what else ?

Such were the ways of "hobby"... heresies and heretics !

There's some interesting context as well as subtext to the above. Clearly, the H2H-AC crowd didn't stop at and rely on the "not-for-profit", usually resorted to, "defense". They went all the way past "fair use" arguments and adopted a "behind the curtains personal use" ultimate "defense". Why this... paranoia ?

Well, here's the context. As far as I know, SSI / Mindscape / The Learning Company / Ubisoft have NEVER bothered or, even, contacted anyone involved with PG1 World hobbyist affairs in regards to copyright concerns...

BUT,

the hostility the SSI's "Living Battlefield" customer crowd has repeatedly shown and directed at the good ol' "Research Centre" convinced us that it was better to go "off the Web". In other words, "out of virtual... visibility, out of... annoyances or, even, vindictive (?) legal threats"...

The preceding example splendidly illustrates the fact that, for the most part, commercial entities tend to behave rationally. On the other hand, their customers may have their own... ideological (?) or strictly personal (?) axes to grind; NOT for money, of course... :bonk
Last edited by HexCode on 2022-10-04 10:26, Tuesday, edited 1 time in total.

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[DEV] This Ahistorical Mod Is Finished

Post by HexCode » 2022-10-03 03:52, Monday

Hey unknown reader,

It's extremely unlikely my Mod's final version would be of any interest to you. However, if it so happens you're truly interested, just go here

viewtopic.php?f=95&t=814#p14684

and start reading. That's it ! That's all !

By the way, as far as I'm concerned, unknown / silent readers and downloaders are completely irrelevant to MY "hobby" ! :|

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[DEV] What Happened to my Unit ?

Post by HexCode » 2022-11-27 22:05, Sunday

On numerous occasions, I've posted in THESE OG forums that PGF is a "canned" wargame emulating two earlier wargames which were "canned" as well: SSI's PG1 and AG. To this effect, when a content designer deviates from the... canon set by SSI's "flagship" PG1/AG content, well, all bets are off ! :bonk

My mod features Transport Class Unit Types universally assigned a Spotting Range value of ZERO (0). Once in a blue moon, the following... offbeat phenomenon is encountered. A Transport Class unit attempts to move to its designated hex but the intended move is cut short; reason being, the unit suddenly finds itself adjacent to a hidden enemy unit which STILL remains hidden. Now, if it so happens that the hex is already occupied by yet another friendly Transport Class unit, that unit is rendered visually suppressed. Nevertheless, PGF's programming DOES accommodate the actual collocation of BOTH friendly Transport Class units (i.e., no unit gets eliminated) in that one hex. How does a player visually recover the mysteriously :) disappeared friendly Transport Class unit ?

1) One has to move the friendly Transport Class unit which visually occupies the unit collocation hex FIRST.

2) Next, one activates the Units Panel and selects the mysteriously disappeared friendly Transport Class unit; yeah, the unit is "in there" alright ! :yes

3) Upon unit selection, the map displays all possible destination hexes (including the collocation hex itself) associated with the STILL "invisible" unit.

4) Upon selection of the desired destination hex and following the move execution, the hitherto "invisible" unit suddenly reappears at the destination hex in all its former glory. :)

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[DEV] Unexpected But Welcome Observations

Post by HexCode » 2023-10-26 00:18, Thursday

Prologue

I'm currently taking a rather prolonged "Leave of Absence" from the PGF hobby. However, I was pleasantly surprised to come across an encouraging PM focusing on my Mod.

a) Clearly, there're hobby manifestations which sidestep the "public" face of these Forums. :cool

b) I'm deriving great satisfaction to empirically ascertain that, irrespective of certain wargamers' opinions and actions regarding this Mod and / or its Designer, where there's a will, there's a way. :clap

Observations -- Part I
1) The logical disadvantage of single scenario combat is that the player doesn't care at all whether he has an army with STR=1 or STR=10 by the time he wins.
Agreed. The Mod is definitely "retro" here (i.e., mid-1960s).
2) I miss the visualization. For me, I will replace the squares with icons. Otherwise I think about what the square means instead of the game and make mistakes.
Yes, this is a... generational issue. :) The Mod emulates the looks of AH's "Blitzkrieg".
3) Overall balance. It's not easy to win! I won on the last turn.
Yes, this is right. This isn't SSI-like fare. The underlying assumption here is that human players are reasonably sophisticated and, most importantly, don't mind losing from time to time. :ihope
4) Lack of unit EXP & Purchases
That's "Blitzkrieg" territory. However, this isn't just about "retro" nostalgia. The human player must utilize whatever units he commands at the start of the Battle (Scenario) to pursue victory. Although not impossible, it's quite hard for units to achieve Quality (Experience) Levels 1, let alone, 2. As for the AI not being allowed to purchase swarms of ill-fated units, well, the units it's being granted at the Battle's very start should be enough to credibly resist... :2cents
5) Well thought out Spotting
That's where "retro" emulation couldn't be pursued. "Blitzkrieg" is a tabletop wargame. :bonk Yeah, I zeroed in onto all those Spotting Ranges after much trial-and-error play.

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[DEV] Observations -- Part II

Post by HexCode » 2023-10-26 21:44, Thursday

Observations -- Part II
A) Level Bombers are too well protected from AD fire.
Yes, it's intentional. Their main purpose is to suppress the powerful AD Class fire which extends 3-hexes outward. Secondary purposes are to suppress SPATs, Garrisons and Structures. Mind you, effective use of Level Bombers must definitely await winning the air war.
B) Tactical Bombers are not very effective at attacking Ground targets.
I consciously avoided turning them into dive-bomber killers. After all, I did put Level Bombers on a... pedestal. However, Tactical Bombers can still do a job on weakened armor. More generally, they do play their modest part via combined arms attacks directed at a single Ground Target.
C) Infantry is only needed to kill Garrison with AMMO=0. I couldn't find any other tasks for it, as it doesn't handle anything else.
Depends on terrain features. But, yes, given the overall importance of subduing Objective Hex Garrison resistance, Infantry Class units do their part.
D) SPARTY is ... a unit killer of everything.
The main purpose of SPARTY is to reduce enemy Strength Points in and around surrounded Garrisoned Objective Hexes; secondarily, to protect otherwise vulnerable units (e.g., Infantry Class) from AI counterattacks.
Last edited by HexCode on 2023-11-11 00:58, Saturday, edited 2 times in total.

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[DEV] Observations -- Part III

Post by HexCode » 2023-10-28 01:52, Saturday

Observations -- Part III
1) Heavy tanks are Uber-units. They do the winning. Heavy Tanks in CDP have too many targets in the sense of both destroying Garrisons, attacking Forts, SPAT/ATG, and SPARTY.
Yes, without such units, BzK Battles would take forever to be concluded. Mind you, the human player must be careful not to lose a single one of them. Remember, one must wait until severe loss of Strength Factors (at least four) materializes before "allowing himself" to procure Replacements. Also, these units are quite vulnerable to attack while being en route, mounted on Naval Transports.
2) Medium (Tanks) are essentially "light" and of little use. They take huge losses and get huge amounts of Replacements (prestige allows this).
There're Battles in which the AI fields quite a few mobile units (Partisans, Medium Tanks / SPATs). Medium Tanks can be very effective in challenging them especially within the context of combined arms tactics.
3) Too much PP on the player
The Support (Prestige) situation is quite nuanced. The human player is not granted any Support Points (SPs) outright. Instead, he has to rely on the Support he gains by rendering urban centers / airfields / ports friendly and by being tactically successful on the battlefield. Oftentimes, the human player is faced with severe lack of adequate SPs in the early phase of the Battle. Later on, the situation improves. However, with one rather important exception, a lot of the additional SPs available are practically useless to him. He cannot purchase new units or over-strengthen existing ones. BUT, he CAN Upgrade units. Even then, the latter stages of a Battle are about the rapidity of successively subduing Objective Hex resistance. Replacement procurement and unit Upgrades take precious time... In any case, Battle maximum duration specifications attempt to factor in such capabilities.

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Re: [DEV] Observations -- Part II

Post by Lettos » 2023-11-03 18:05, Friday

A) Level Bombers are too well protected from AD fire.
Yes, it's intentional. Their main purpose is to suppress the powerful AD Class fire which extends 3-hexes long. Secondary purposes are to suppress SPATs, Garrisons and Structures. Mind you, effective use of Level Bombers must definitely await winning the air war.
B) Tactical Bombers are not very effective at attacking Ground targets.
I consciously avoided turning them into dive-bomber killers. After all, I did put Level Bombers on a... pedestal. However, Tactical Bombers can still do a job on weakened armor. More generally, they do play their modest part via combined arms attacks directed at a single Ground Target.
Answered here: viewtopic.php?f=95&t=467&p=17414#p17414

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