Thursday, July 14, 2005

Origins 2005 New Features

July monthly total ~17 hours; yearly total ~185 hours.

Here are some of the new features that we put in the game during Origins 2005 itself (click on the pictures for full size images).

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The first new feature is the Game Messages window. This is a
dockable, resizeable window that shows messages output by the game.
If any of you have seen earlier versions of the game, you'll remember
that turn execution resulted in many annoying dialog windows popping
up to display messages. After Origins 2004, I took the opportunity to
centralize the code that displayed those dialogs. During Origins
2005, I wrote the code for the Game Messages window.

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The Find Locate Leader option draws a line from the currently selected unit to its leader. The line is green if the unit is in command; red otherwise.

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The Show Command Radius feature draws hexes highlighted in yellow with a "C" around the selected leader unit to indicate the command radius.

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When active, the Show Current Command Units mode hides all combat units except those commanded by the currently selected leader.

vive L'E!
Meanwhile, here's how my day went...

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Click on the image for full size.

Actually, it wasn't that bad a day. Write a schema, transcribe to the database. Use CodeSmith to rip out the stored procedures, business objects, and data access layer support, and code up the UI for a .Net app. I didn't quite make it to the UI part, but that'll make for a fun Friday.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Origins Days 3 and 4 Update

July monthly total 14 hours; yearly total 182.5 hours.

Another year, another Origins! We had a very good convention. We showed the game to a couple of Clash of Arms demo gents (Frank Hakstege and Richard Kane), and Chris played a game of Quatre Bras (a translation of the Origins 2003/2004 Eylau demo software for that battle) with Ed Wimble.

Ed liked it. He suggested we update the map and counter art, and then perhaps market the game without the AI, or with a limited AI, while we continued to bring the AI up to speed. Frank provided some valuable input, and Richard Kane made a number of suggestions regarding human factors issues.

Right now the big question on our minds is whether Clash of Arms will release an early version of Eylau without the full AI. We're waiting to get the official word from Charlie.

In the meantime, we're forging ahead.

vive L'E!

Day 3 Changes:

Fixed bug 050623-1:
Skip unused steps in the Setup Wizard. We have not implemented full
multi-player hotseat or PBEM support, but the Setup Wizard had several pages supporting multi-player setup. We now skip those (currently irrelevant) steps.

Implemented enhancement 050702+2:
Add a "Show command radii" toggle to the Map/Display menu. This feature shows yellow color overlays with a "C" in each hex for the currently selected leader.

Day 4 Changes:

Implemented enhancement 050702+13:
Add labels for Movement Points and Increments to the Unit Info dialog.

Implemented enhancement 050702+4:
Add a "Locate Leader" feature to the game. This toggles on via the Map/Display menu, a toolbar button, or the "Ctrl-L" hotkey. This draws a line from the currently selected unit to that unit's leader, and highlights the leader hex.

Implemented enhancement 050702+18:
Show all Unit Info accelerators in menu (F11). Just added "F11" to the menu item for the Unit Info option in the View menu.

Implemented enhancement 050702+3:
Add a "Show current command units only" feature to the Map/Display menu. When activated, this feature only displays leader units plus combat units commanded by the currently selected leader.