A Look Ahead

I wanted to record a playthrough of this week’s build but it doesn’t look like that will be possible today, so instead I’m going to write a brief outline of my near-term plans for development of Armoured Commander II.

Since I cracked the core gameplay pattern back in May, I’m really pleased with how ArmCom2 has come along. Unfortunately before that I spent a lot of time and effort on game elements that were later abandoned (for good reasons, I think) but even so, much of what I worked on has helped lay the groundwork for the current state of the game. Recently, every time I add a new feature or a new group of units, it really feels like the game is heading in the right direction. The play experience is a little reminiscent of ArmCom1 but also quite different, so hopefully I’ll be able to fulfill my goal of fixing some of the major problems with the original game while moving much further with the scope of the sequel.

There are hundreds of vehicles and weapons and dozens of battlegrounds that could be added to the game, drawing upon the war’s history back as far as 1937 and forward into 1945. Drawing upon on my experience making ArmCom1, however, I am doing my best to be diligent in keeping the scope of the game small and focused while I make sure that its core components are built up properly and that the game, before all else, works and is fun to play.

To that end, my plan for Alpha 1, which will be the first version of the game where all the essential core elements are present (though likely not bug-free!), is fairly limited but it will hopefully be enough to give players a taste of what’s planned for the long term. In Alpha 1 the player will be able to choose to play either a German or a Polish armoured commander starting in September 1939, build a battlegroup made up of their own tank and supporting units such as more tanks, mounted infantry, armoured cards, artillery and air support, and so on. Through a series of scenarios players will build up Victory Points, earn military awards, and acquire experience and skills for themselves, their crew, and their subordinates. The scenario will end in early October 1939 with the fall of Poland. Unfortunately it doesn’t make sense to allow the player’s actions to influence the history of the war, since it would quickly require accounting for a number of speculative historical outcomes. They will, however, be able to contribute as best they can in their corner of the war, even if they can’t turn the tide of the overall conflict. Beyond Alpha 1, players will be able to continue beyond the end of the campaign, on to the Low Countries and France for German characters, and into the Free Polish forces for Polish commanders.

I don’t have a timeline for when Alpha 1 will be ready, but my plan is to continue working steadily and to keep uploading weekly builds when possible as well.

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