Over the past few weeks, I’ve tried various techniques and approaches to make the planned grid map work, but it’s just not turning out how I had hoped. I suspect that there’s simply too much information that would need to be displayed on the map for an ascii grid to work. In any case, I’m not able to make it work with my programming and design skills, such as they are.
So I’m restarting the ArmCom 2 project, returning to the model of ArmCom 1 with an aim toward improving some of its shortcomings and greatly expanding the scope of the game beyond what was possible then. The major change in plans is returning to a player tank-centered view, with the player’s tank in the middle of the viewport and the terrain scrolling around it, which I think works extremely well in a game where the focus is on your tank and your crew. The mockup image below is what I have planned, and I have a work in progress that has implemented the hex map as shown. The big difference in ArmCom 2 is that the map is less abstract than the encounter map in ArmCom: each hex represents an area terrain 200m. wide, and your battlegroup moves through the map rather than enemies and terrain being represented more abstractly at a rough range and direction from your tank. You are only able to see 5 hexes in any direction, but the rest of the hex map exists beyond this and is persistent if you leave and later return. Red arrows will indicate known or suspected enemies beyond the visible part of the map, and the light blue arrow will show the direction toward an objective.
Additionally, both cross-country travel and battle encounters will take place on this same map, so most of the game will take place in a single interface, rather than switching between a larger campaign day map and a battle map. Friendly units will be represented more precisely, with the option of sending them out to other hexes to scout, attack, ambush, etc. Initially I still plan to start with the early war, Eastern Europe 1939-1940, and to later expand to later periods and theatres of the war.