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More rockets and tech timeline.

I greatly reduced the rate of fire of the rockets and made them smaller. A single 60mm rocket now takes up the same space as a machine gun. A single vehicle should mount a large number of rockets to take advantage of their power.

I also added a delay after a weapon is successfully fired. This means the rockets will fire in a staggered volley instead of all at once. I tried both styles and this looks better and creates less logic spikes.

I think it needs more smoke and I'll be adding some rocket trails too.

I'm still unsure of where to put the rockets in the tech ladder. In real life the Russians developed their rockets before the German invasion. They were first deployed in 1941.

These early rockets were quite small though larger ones were developed later.
The Germans designed and tested their first rockets as early as 1940 but they were not deployed until 1941. Larger rockets were introduced later.

The rockets weren't mounted on vehicles until 1943, by which time the Americans had started producing their own rocket carrier.
I'm going to make the smaller rockets level 3, which puts them around 1941 levels of technology, while the larger ones will be level 4 which would put them around 1943.

Actually, now is a good time to talk about tech levels. I've set up the vehicle components so they follow a simple schedule based on tech levels from real life:
The current scope of the game is from 1936-1940, the first stage of the Vinland Crusade and the Northern Revolts. This makes equipment from level 0 to level 2 available, with level 3 and 4 equipment available as "prototypes" which can be bought at a much higher price and limited availability.

Each level allows the creation of a vehicle which is superior to those from the previous level. In theory if you had a vehicle which is all level 3, you could easily defeat a level 2 vehicle.

However, levels are split for each kind of technology and differ depending on faction.
For example, Vinland gets access to level 5 engine technology by 1943, but their weapons don't reach that pinnacle until spring 1948. The Europeans start out with level 2 technology almost across the board, but are much slower to adapt because of their long supply lines and entrenched military customs. Later in the war they are suffering a complete breakdown, with war weariness and revolts crippling their wartime economy. They lose their early lead and by 1945 they are only ahead on weapons and infantry.

This should give more interesting design philosophies, where some vehicles are far ahead in one area, but lagging in another.  


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Telling a story; Creating a Compelling Narrative.

Telling a story; Creating a Compelling Narrative. In this blog I will talk about my own recent brush with story telling and go on to talk about how tools from creative wring can help you to better author the narrative in your games, whether they have a traditional linear narrative or a procedurally generated interactive narrative.

Narrative and structure in traditional fiction  last week I started writing a story set in the world I'm developing for my game Vinland: 1936.

I hope the story will help me to flesh out my game world and develop my own expanded universe which will be a good place to set my games in the future.

After about a week of work, on and off I've progressed the story to outline stage. For each character thread I have half a dozen chapters which plot a course through the events of the story. Each thread is told from the perspective of a different character.


Actually I started writing as soon as I had my outline, but I've since gone back and deleted what …

Back to Vinland.

I'm going back to my real time tactics project, Vinland 1936.
While working on the other project I overcame the problems which were stopping me from saving/loading the game and also cleaned up the base code a lot.

After a few weeks I'm getting near the the state I was in before.


Infantry are back to their previous state, and vehicles are running OK.
This time I'm going to push ahead with mocking up the combat system though before I work any more on the vehicle builder or graphical aspects of the game.

Map screen designs

I've been working some more on the map window. Right now you can only see the base, it doesn't show items, enemies or even doors on the map yet. These would be decals.


In the top window you can see the modified result of last night's tile based map. It looks good but there are some visual artifacts related to the problems I encountered yesterday, and as well it takes much more code and time to calculate.

The second window uses a cheap trick to fake an beveled look from a smoothed version of the 32x32 map. It uses black to mask unexplored areas.

Finally the third version is meant to look like a had drawn map. I'm using a cross hatching texture to distort it and unexplored areas are shown as blank map paper.

There's going to be a mechanic in game where you need to use some paper every level in order to activate the map for that level. From there it will fill it in automatically. Paper will be pretty rare so it might be worth keeping it safe for the more complex level…