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"Wheeling" - Pivot / Move

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

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"Wheeling" - Pivot / Move

Postby rolinckfan » January 25th, 2010, 11:06 pm

Hi -
i read about using Vassal for "Miniature-Games" and would like to make my own mod for a Game. It would be very useful, if it would be possible to:
1) Combine multiple "Units" together (like snapping them together), to be able to Pivot them "as one" around one of the front-corners.
2) Give a Unit a maximum Movedistance, including this Pivot. This might be a big problem. For example in the "real" game you can wheel your unit up to 2 inch an then move further to a total of 9 inch (or more, depending on the unit).
Even more complicated, no matter how far you wheel, it always counts as 2 inch from your total 9 inch move.
If multiple units are combined, this gets even more complicatet, as the width of all the units come into play - the longer the Line the less "degree" you can pivot with your 2 inches ...

If there are already possibilities to do that in Vassal, please let me know - and it would be awesome, if such features could be seen in a futere release
Thanks,
Arno
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Postby mehrunes » January 27th, 2010, 4:53 pm

There were official RFEs for that two years ago and again last summer.
But I don't know if it is in Vassal yet.

It's a major problem for all who want to make modules for mass battle tabletops. :cry:
Apologize my bad english - I'm not a native speaker. ;)
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Postby rolinckfan » January 28th, 2010, 1:06 am

das besprechen wir dann mal im Tiny-Soldiers weiter ;)...
LG,
Arno
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Postby mehrunes » April 4th, 2010, 1:57 pm

Anything new on this?
Apologize my bad english - I'm not a native speaker. ;)
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Postby danjaman » May 23rd, 2010, 3:18 pm

Hi,

I worked on a system briefly to acheive this effect without 'modification' of code, but rather creative use of existing functions. The key is to get past the mental block that is, each 'miniature' must be represented by an individual piece... in reality, there is no need for it, all you need is an interface and graphical representation of the overall unit and the models it contains.

Although it was a long time ago, and through lack of time was never finished beyond concept, I began work on such a system. Perhaps it could be adapted to your needs, or anybodies 'unit / ranks' needs.

Without getting beyond one piece one model, its highly unlikely that such a thing is possible in real terms, not least in the incredible amount of slowdown you would generate, keeping track of 200+ peices and rotating them in large batches.

For this to work, and work well and be playable, it needs a very different, simpler implimentation. Requiring more initial work for the designer, yet much improved results on completion.

It does depend heavily on the scale, by which i mean skirmish or epic scale for example, 100 models or 1000 models 10 units approx. per side or 100 units per side...

Pivoting en masse is not easy to get right, but is possible.


[Edit] Limiting moves isn't difficult, but what if you make a mistake and have to redo the pivot. ~I mean you can't limit the pivot to 2" , so most things will be on trust to large extent, even if some form of enforced regulation is there, and you need to be able to 'undo', unfortunately the more complicated the combination of actions involved and variables changed requires more than one 'undo' in the Vassal engine and much of which is invisible / unknown to the average user... suddenly they find that they have 1 or 2" less movement than they feel they should... can break games. Not impossible, but you have to remember what the Vassal engine caters for, bard games and the like, as if you were at the board,, not like a computer simulation.
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Postby Skalla » June 14th, 2010, 3:30 am

There was a Flash DBA game that did exactly this, sadly the site is long gone now. There was also Milton Soong's Little Cyber Wars that did this, in Java but it hasn't been updated in ages and the rest of the program was rather lacking. The Virtual Tabletop alpha does this, in 3d no less.
It doesn't seem to be impossible, but since I can't code my way out of a wet 'hello world' I really don't know ;)

Sure would be nice though. I think most of us want something that can wheel/pivot groups of counters or 'stands' not hundreds of individual 'figures' or images.
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"Wheeling" - Pivot / Move

Postby uckelman » June 14th, 2010, 9:35 am

Thus spake "Skalla":
There was a Flash DBA game that did exactly this, sadly the site is long gone
now. There was also Milton Soong's Little Cyber Wars that did this, in Java
but it hasn't been updated in ages and the rest of the program was rather lac
king. The Virtual Tabletop alpha does this, in 3d no less.

It doesn't seem to be impossible, but since I can't code my way out of a wet
'hello world' I really don't know ;)



Sure would be nice though. I think most of us want something that can wheel/p
ivot groups of counters or 'stands' not hundreds of individual 'figures' or i
mages.


VASSAL will eventually have this; it's just a matter of someone getting
around to coding it. (This means that someone should volunteer to code
it, if the usual developers are too slow for your taste.)

--
J.

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Postby Skalla » June 14th, 2010, 7:59 pm

Hey Joel, no worries mate. I know nothing about coding and am certainly not suggesting "the usual developers are too slow" lol! You guys have done great stuff with VASSAL, it's come a long way since the beginning.

Was just saying it should be possible given it has been done in those other programs.
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Postby danjaman » July 16th, 2010, 11:59 am

Well, you would need to wheel from both front corners at least...

But why not just use offset layers for each individual model and then use the usual pivot function?

Again I would suggestthat individual models as a set, is more complicated than necessary... I mean take for example... lets see... Warhammer: do each individual figure need DPs and need to be individually managed, or is it units and characters that are the 'functional component'.

I gather wounds are assigned to units, they move as one (exception being of course skirmish, but they need no mass pivot).

The only problem i forsee is differing unit frontage for the pivot, but you would have the same problem for any new one based on multile peices rather than an individual peice with multiple layers.

There is nothing wrong with the code already in place, it is just a matter of overcoming the assumption thta a model needs to be represented by its own personal peice within Vassal in all situations. It isn't the case.
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Re: "Wheeling" - Pivot / Move

Postby Skalla » December 23rd, 2010, 9:12 pm

Go open the De Bellis Vassalus mod, drag 4 or 5 units out on the map and put them in a line. Now try to wheel the line as a group.
Can't be done. They all pivot individually. So then you spend forever trying to get them all to line up again. And this will happen over and over during the course of a game. DBV is just one example. Any attempt at miniatures style mods outside of skirmish sized, single figure games is going to need this.
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Re: [messages] Edit: [Feature Requests] Re: "Wheeling" - Piv

Postby tar » December 23rd, 2010, 11:32 pm

On Dec 23, 2010, at 1:15 PM, Skalla wrote:

> [This message has been edited.]
>
> Go open the De Bellis Vassalus mod, drag 4 or 5 units out on the map
> and
> put them in a line. Now try to wheel the line as a group.
> Can't be done. They all pivot individually.

As the thread indicates, this is a long-standing request for a new
feature.

I suspect that it is likely to be difficult, since there hasn't been
much in the way of work done on it, and IIRC there isn't a lot that is
done with operations on groups of units.

So, perhaps it would help if you can explain a bit how you might like
to see this work.

Which units perform the pivot?
Is it based on selected units?

How do you know where to pivot from?

What happens if you select units that are not in a line?
Do they pivot? Do you get an error message?
How do we figure out if the units are "in a line" in the first place?

Do we need to have a grouping function implemented first?
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Re: "Wheeling" - Pivot / Move

Postby Skalla » December 24th, 2010, 1:11 am

Well, as I've mentioned, I'm no coder. The way I have seen it done was units that were placed adjacent to each other could be selected as a group, and then you could grab either front corner of the piece on the end and pivot the whole group. In VASSAL I would suppose you could implement it as two separate commands, "wheel right" and "wheel left". Not sure how often people would need/want to mass rotate non adjacent pieces, if so it would require wheel as a separate command I suppose.
It is certainly not necessary nor high priority to VASSAL as it stands, but it would be nice someday ;)
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Re: [messages] Edit: [Feature Requests] Re: "Wheeling" - Piv

Postby jacar » January 2nd, 2011, 1:36 am

tar wrote:On Dec 23, 2010, at 1:15 PM, Skalla wrote:
Do we need to have a grouping function implemented first?


I think you just hit the nail on the head. The hard part is not wheeling per se. That code is already implemented. The hard part is defining the group of units to be wheeled. Essentially, the group that would be wheeled needs to be known as a super unit that VASSAL understands all of the dimensions (length and width). If you could have a group/ungroup function, that would take care of the problem. The grouped set of units could be looked at by VASSAL as a single unit. From there it is a matter of applying the wheel function.

John
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Re: [messages] Edit: [Feature Requests] Re: "Wheeling" - Piv

Postby Tim M » January 2nd, 2011, 3:01 am

jacar wrote:
tar wrote:On Dec 23, 2010, at 1:15 PM, Skalla wrote:
Do we need to have a grouping function implemented first?


I think you just hit the nail on the head. The hard part is not wheeling per se. That code is already implemented. The hard part is defining the group of units to be wheeled. Essentially, the group that would be wheeled needs to be known as a super unit that VASSAL understands all of the dimensions (length and width). If you could have a group/ungroup function, that would take care of the problem. The grouped set of units could be looked at by VASSAL as a single unit. From there it is a matter of applying the wheel function.

John


The idea of a "super unit" or better described as you have here - the ability to group / ungroup different units was discussed before a long time back. I think it's a great idea and worthy of an RFE, but as was noted back in that discussion from long back, one of the vassal dev's pointed out all the traits and features this implicates or could affect so it is not as simple as it might seem at first glance and may be a significant task to implement.
Tim,
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Re: [messages] [Feature Requests] Re: Edit: [Feature Request

Postby uckelman » January 2nd, 2011, 4:25 pm

Thus spake jacar:
>
> "tar" wrote:
> > On Dec 23, 2010, at 1:15 PM, Skalla wrote:
> > Do we need to have a grouping function implemented first?
>
>
> I think you just hit the nail on the head. The hard part is not
> wheeling per se. That code is already implemented. The hard part is
> defining the group of units to be wheeled. Essentially, the group that
> would be wheeled needs to be known as a super unit that VASSAL
> understands all of the dimensions (length and width). If you could have
> a group/ungroup function, that would take care of the problem. The
> grouped set of units could be looked at by VASSAL as a single unit.
> From there it is a matter of applying the wheel function.
>
> John
>

Grouping could possibly be handled as a different sort of Stack
(i.e, a horizontal one).

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