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"Pointer" tool

Suggestions for additional features for the module editor and Vassal engine.

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"Pointer" tool

Postby Filip » September 13th, 2009, 1:26 am

Our group has been using Vassal pretty extensively as our primary virtual tabletop for over a year now, so I decided to request a few features that seem useful. I'm going to start a separate thread for each one. However, note that this one is the most important for us - the remaining threads cover minor stuff, while we could really use a "pointer" tool in our games.

So, apps such as MapTool or Gametable have this cool feature - when you hold spacebar your mouse cursor changes into an arrow or a hand, labeled with your name, and it appears like that for everyone. The other players can see what you are pointing at and follow your mouse movements. If you do it outside their current view, they get some indication that they should scroll the map in that particular direction.

It's particularly useful in streamlining communication. It makes it much easier to explain which piece or location you are talking about exactly.

I guess it would be best to implement it as an optional feature of each map, with a keystroke defined by a module designer.
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Postby wlk » June 20th, 2010, 5:22 pm

I was thinking about the same feature.

I have figured a workaround using the LOS_Thread class to report locations without actually having to do a real LOS, but yes a visual notification on the map would be more effective.
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Re: "Pointer" tool

Postby TREADHEAD » October 9th, 2015, 9:22 pm

Any movement towards getting this in future releases? I think it would really help with both log file replays, but mostly during live games.
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Re: "Pointer" tool

Postby djsullivan » October 22nd, 2015, 1:56 pm

I wrote a simple map pointer for VASL - nothing as elaborate as what's described here. If you CTR+click on the map it centers the map on the spot and paints a red circle. It would need a bit of clean up by the VASSAL code gurus before integration but would definitely fit the bill. The code is available here: ...
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Re: "Pointer" tool

Postby pecete » March 6th, 2016, 8:55 am

Please add this to standar VASSALENGINE, very usefull
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Re: "Pointer" tool

Postby Dago » October 13th, 2016, 7:37 pm

YES! It is really REALLY something i NEED
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Re: "Pointer" tool

Postby Dago » October 13th, 2016, 7:39 pm

BTW. how to add that pointer that was added here?
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Re: "Pointer" tool

Postby dynaman » July 18th, 2018, 12:17 am

Old thread but I recently wanted to add the VASL pointer tool to Panzer and MBT and managed to do so. It required adding all of the VASL code to the module (about a meg I think) but was easy to do once I figured it out. I have not posted the modules here since I am not the designer or maintenance person of either and I don't know what the license is for using the code outside of VASL.
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Re: "Pointer" tool

Postby pecete » April 19th, 2019, 11:21 pm

This tool is really needed in many wargame modules for pbem, as we need an easy way to point wich unit attacks what unit, its a must please.
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Re: "Pointer" tool

Postby Badger16 » April 23rd, 2019, 12:53 pm

Thanks for the advice, I'll try and see if I can add it to my games. If I manage to do it and if it works normally and not by a fluke, then I'll do a little tutorial for you guys.
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Re: "Pointer" tool

Postby shilinski » May 17th, 2019, 5:47 am

I've created 50 - 100 modules, and in every one I've created a special pointer piece that players can use to point to things. It's an arrow or bullseye image in several colors that a user can cycle through. You can even rotate it as you please. It floats above everything else in a top layer. This requires NO special code. It's a simple piece with clone and delete that I put in a palette so players can grab it as needed. It's especially useful in war games where players must designate many attackers and defenders.

Again, it does not require any special code. It's just a simple arrow piece, and anybody can make one. Am I the only one who does this?
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Re: "Pointer" tool

Postby akulkis00 » December 14th, 2019, 5:13 am

Shilinski, apparently, you're the only one approaching this problem who is clever enough to use the obvious solution rather than begging for special code to duplicate what can be accomplished with the current capabilities of the system.
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