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Thread: Battle Board Size

  1. #1

    Battle Board Size

    I wanted to get some feedback about this as it's something the team is currently discussing.

    How big should the battle board be?

    I mean in tiles obviously. 10x10, 30x30, what would you guys like to see. Keep in mind the more tiles we have the smaller the units are going to be. (Think about how small they were in MoM.) I'm not saying this is a bad thing, I'm just saying it's a fact. The larger the board the more tactical moves you can make. The smaller the better the units look.

    Thoughts?

  2. #2
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    You can always let us zoom in if it's that important, right? The MoM board was a bit small, the Elemental board was too big. Somewhere in between?

  3. #3
    Moderator Asmodai's Avatar
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    Honestly to speak intelligently about board size we'd need to know range and movement rates... fortunately not being able to speak intelligently on a topic has never stopped me before. :-)
    I however am going to make a few assumptions, namely D20 movement rates and weapon ranges (assuming a 10' tile size)
    With that in mind for battles where units aren't fighting to defend a structure (such as a city), on the water, etc. ("normal" battles) I think a map with 16 tiles between the front rank of both armies is sufficient. This makes the units start outside the range of the longest ranged thrown weapon (javelin - 15 tile range) yet well within the range of the shortest ranged projectile weapon (sling - 16-20 is the 3rd of 10 range increments (-4 to hit)). This also puts both sides just out of range of the faster charge rates (light warhorse move is 6 tiles so a double move is 12 tiles). I do think it would be a bad idea to make the map SO large that ranged weapons start out of range (50+ tiles between armies) or so it would take a ton of turns for foot soldiers to reach each other. Foot soldiers often have 2 or 3 move rates (4 or 6 if they use a double move) so it will take about 3 turns for them to get to each other if both sides are moving toward each other). This is offset by the fact that again, projectile weapons are in range from the start and mounted units would easily reach each other or even foot units if both sides are moving toward each other. Likewise thrown weapons would be in range with just one or two moves. Having a few objects on the map to hide behind from projectile weapons would be good too. Not a ton, just a few spaced out objects depending on the tile type... rocks in mountains, trees in woods, etc.

  4. #4
    I suppose I should have given you guys a bit more information before I asked the question.

    So, information:
    There are two display modes for the battle board. Isometric and perspective view. In isometric view the zoom factor is set (in the current build). In perspective mode you can zoom in and out.

    The tiles are 10x10 (feet) and we are basically using the D20 movement rules. Each unit has two full actions per turn (as per MoM, not D20). A full action will allow a double move, but there will be no "run". A charge will allow a double move and attack, but that will end the unit's turn. We are also using the D20 range increments. Right now we are considering a 20x20 grid, but that may be too big.

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    Scrolling?
    Sorry, signature is under construction.

  6. #6
    Abecedarian Mage Trudd's Avatar
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    Maybe the size should differ with the location of the battle.
    For exemple, in a dungeon or a cave, 10x10, in forest 15x15 and in open area 20x20.
    I don't really know if the scale of size is good but that's the idea.
    In fact, another point is important: how many units can fight in a single battle?

  7. #7
    Moderator Asmodai's Avatar
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    First let me say I'm not a dev I case that's not clear. I will try to provide some information though that may help people decide on board size. The tile size it said to be 10'x10' and the ranges and movement rates D20 based... what does that mean?

    Movement rates:
    Humans, elves, and most "normal" sized creatures in no or light armor would move 3 tiles per move (double moves per turn are possible so that means up to 6 tiles per turn)
    Humans, elves, etc. in medium or heavy armor and dwarves in any armor move 2 tiles per move (total move per turn of 4 tiles)
    Heavy warhorses move 5 per move (10 total)
    Light warhorses move 6 per move (12 total)

    Ranges:
    Thrown weapons go 5 range increments and all standard thrown weapons have either a 1, 2, or 3 range (so 5, 10, or 15 total range)
    weapons with 1 tile throwing range (5 total) = dagger, club, throwing axe, trident
    weapons with 2 tile throwing range (10 total) = shortspear (one handed), spear, dart, light hammer
    weapon with 3 tile throwing range (15 total) = javelin

    Projectile weapons go 10 range increments and have long ranges so unless the board is HUGE everything on it will be in range.
    For example...
    The shortest range projectile weapon of them all is a hand crossbow (drow like this) at 3 tiles... (similar to the javelin but again, double the range increments so a total range of 30 tiles)
    That's unlikely to be a weapon people use though unless they add dark elves as it's an exotic weapon, the more typical shortest ranged weapon is the sling with a range of 5 tiles (50 total)
    More commonly a shortbow has a 6 tile range increment (total 60 tiles) and a longbow has a 10 tile range increment (100 tile max range), the composite version have 1 tile longer ranges than their "normal" versions (so 7 and 11 tiles/increment)
    A light crossbow has a 8 tile range (total 80) and a heavy crossbow has a 12 tile range (total 120).

    Some things to keep in mind then...
    If the distance between starting units is 12 or less then a cavalry unit on a light warhorse who wins initiative will be able to charge and hit your front rank on the first turn before you've been able to do ANYTHING. Similarly javelins will be in range and depending on how many less than 12 it is so may most thrown weapons (total range 10). Personally I'd like to at least get a chance to shift who is in front and stuff before I starting getting hit by charges and thrown weapons but it's not like nothing is going to happen combat wise the first turn because...
    Projectile weapons are going to start in range unless the board is HUGE (which would be a bad idea).

    ---------- Post added at 08:35 AM ---------- Previous post was at 08:33 AM ----------

    How many units can fight in a single battle (max stack size) is an excellent question though!

  8. #8
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    Didn't this D20 rules and scales (10x10 feet per title) are made for 1 person per unit (or title) combat?
    Last edited by John Madlock; 02-26-2013 at 02:45 PM.
    Sorry, signature is under construction.

  9. #9
    There is no "scrolling" on the battle map as of now. We could add it, obviously, but I'm not really a fan. I feel like we need to try to fit the entire battle on a single "screen".

    We haven't made a firm decision yet about army size or the number of units allowed in a battle. I'm playing around with a "reinforcements" system that would allow you to bring more units into a battle than you could put on the field at one time. We'll talk about that later, however.

    Asmodai, thank you for explaining the D20 movement rules. I am constantly forgetting that when I say "D20" this or that it doesn't mean anything to some people, lol. Plus I've been busy here the past couple of days

    Either way, what you said was right on the money. So, for the moment I would say imagine a battle with those movement rules and say 9 units per side. How big should the board be?

    I also agree that we may want different sizes for different features. Smaller boards could make for some interesting challenges.

  10. #10
    Moderator Asmodai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Madlock View Post
    Didn't this D20 rules and scales (10x10 feet per title) are made for 1 person per unit (or title) combat?
    D20 rules and scales are made for 5'x5' tiles. "reach" weapons go 10' but not 5 and so the movement and ranges (in tiles) would be double. For example the 20' move of a dwarf would be 4 tiles (8 for a double move).
    This means STRICTLY speaking a 10'x10' tile would allow for a 2x2 arrangement of medium sized creatures (such as humans). That said I don't think WoM needs to do a strict interpretation but that does give a nice starting point of 4 person per unit. Maybe small creatures do like 6 per unit and large would actually fit in a tile (in D20 larger creatures take multiple tiles)

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