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Operational Level Game Announcement


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Chromecast is certainly something to consider...of course we are still just slowly plugging away at getting a pc demo first! At the moment things are progressing quite slowly on the development front. I was hoping to have it ready by April, but clearly that didn't happen. When we get a demo ready we will be ready to attempt a kickstarter campaign to obtain the funds for full-time programming. It will be the same programmers, but it will allow them to dedicate themselves full-time without other distractions. Feel free to stop by the forum and check out what has been happening at: http://dogsofwarvu.com/forum/index.php/board,36.0.html At the moment we are in a holding pattern to start an AAR for a battle. This could change any day now....

 

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Hello, my name is Matt and I have a concept designed for an operational level WWII war game that can use tactical games (like CM) to resolve tactical battles that develop in my game called Combat Oper

As promised I have some information to share: the time has come to pitch the idea to the general public via Kickstarter to produce this game. The TENTATIVE date is Sept 1 for the Kickstarter. In a few

For those that are interested I wanted to mention that I am currently doing the AAR. It focuses on the US 29th Infantry Division trying to take St. Lo. The AAR is being executed manually (i.e. I act as the computer using various spreadsheets to evaluate results, create visuals, and explain what is happening) until we get an alpha version prepared, but it still highlights the various capabilities and concepts involved. For instance there are 2 players taking the role of the Americans plus a German player. Of particular interest to you may be the ability to play out interesting battles using your favorite tactical system (e.g. Combat Mission).Currently we have a volunteer who wants to fight one of the tactical battles with Advanced Squad Leader! If you are interested in helping to play out a battle with Combat Mission or a different game system, come over and let me know! Feel free to stop over and take a look at: http://dogsofwarvu.com/forum/index.php/board,36.0.html 

Edited by choppinlt
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For those interested, my ASL battle has finished (with an American victory), and we have learned A LOT about the process of translating a separate lower-level game system like ASL to Theater of Operations.  Here are the links to my AAR (for those really interested in a blow by blow solo ASL game by an inexperienced player, lol), the lessons learned from the playtest, and a good discussion regarding how to integrate the two systems.  All of the above are on the Gamesquad ASL forum, btw. 

Of course those here are likely far more interested in porting CM to Theater of Operations, but keep in mind that the more systems we can concretely mesh with Theater of Operations, the broader the appeal.  The broader the appeal, the more prospective customers, and the more customers, the greater the chance that Battlefront will make a system to automatically inject force levels and extract battle results to/from Theater of Operations.  Just think what we could do with that!

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CK, you truly get it! :D You are exactly right, the more support we gain the more attractive an automated interface between Theater of Operations and CM becomes to BFC. The public who is interested doesn't have to agree with the process, or like the process, but this is the only way an automated campaign layer is going to happen (according to BFC). CK, thanks again for your support thus far and being brave enough to help play test with converting to ASL! You have been more help than you know. For the rest of you, feel free to check out our forum and keep tabs on how the project is evolving.

-Matt

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It’s been awhile since I have updated this forum, and a lot has happened. We have formed a company called BBG with 3 programmers (2 part time and 1 full time lead programmer) along with various other volunteers, and we have been working on a small project for a publisher to cut our teeth before fully getting in to Theater of Operations. Indie projects are a house of cards, and this is no different. Our lead programmer left due to other obligations and we are basically in a holding pattern until we find a new lead programmer(s). If you or someone you know would be interested in helping out then please send me a message through this forum or email me at choppinlt@gmail.com Experience with Unity is a big plus.

Quick refresher on what this project is about: Theater of Operations (ToO) will be an operational level game designed to allow players to play out battles using Combat Mission. Call it a battle generator, operational layer, a campaign system, or whatever you like. Come over to our forum to learn lots more about this project: http://dogsofwarvu.com/forum/index.php/board,36.0.html  

Matt

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Hi Matt,

I am very interested in participating.  I have not read all of the previous posts but a few years back (several actually) a number of us played in what was called "CMMC" or Combat Mission Meta Campaign.  This allowed us to play an operational-level campaign using the original CM to fight individual battles.  There ere quite a few people involved as either players or umpires.  There may be some useful information to mine  out of that experience if you intend for your idea to be multiplayer online.

 

 

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@Artkin and @socalgiven, thanks for the messages. Keep in mind that Theater of Operations (ToO) will be designed as a standalone operational level game. It will NOT simply be a campaign layer for CM like CMC was, but that really is a good thing for a number of reasons. It just so happens that I am designing ToO with CM in mind. ;) I also agree that ToO can totally transform the CM experience, hence my motivation for doing this. It will remove the all or nothing feel of CM battles. While that is certainly A LOT of fun, having a bigger picture will transform the battlefield calculus.

@socalgiven, help is always appreciated! The help this project needs most is getting a lead programmer! We lost our lead programmer a few months ago right when we were looking to make some real progress. We can use a number of different types of game development disciplines for those that may be interested.

Thanks,

Matt

 

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On 9/25/2018 at 3:55 AM, choppinlt said:

It will remove the all or nothing feel of CM battles. While that is certainly A LOT of fun, having a bigger picture will transform the battlefield calculus.

That's what we are all hoping for. But looking at your forum, it seems you're in scope creep right now, with more and more features you want to put into the game:

Quote

Every participating ground unit will have the following evaluated:
Leadership
Experience Level
Cohesion
Morale
Fatigue
Ammo Level
Current posture
Equipment Available
How many engagements it is participating in (primarily for defenders)
Battlefield position (defenders only)
Terrain it occupies
Direction of attack (units that are flanked suffer a penalty)
Obstacles (attackers only, which primarily includes streams, rivers and beaches)
Special abilities (right now this is primarily engineers when attacking prepared or fortified positions)

Other variables:
Battlefield Terrain
Weather conditions
Time of Day
Air situation
Season

Have you considered just making a more simple first version that just lets us push some counters around on a map, and importing/exporting lists of units to and from CM when two units end up in the same hex?

That's basically what the community is doing manually right now, and just getting a version that could help automate that process would be a BIG thing.

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Hi Bulletpoint! If you are referring to the attached list in terms of scope creep, then no I don't believe that is the case. Most things on that list is a unit characteristic that impacts game algorithms in different ways. While game mechanics have evolved, the core scope of the game has been the same since I made this announcement. Much of what is seen on the forum are deep explanations on many of the different game concepts and characteristics.

You ask if I have considered a simple version to push units around? No that is not under consideration for a variety of different reasons. I am using Vassal to create the mock-up images for the test scenario, but I have not set it up to have any deeper functionality than to generate pictures. Vassal may be of some use to you, and do some or all of what you are talking about. BFC has long told me that their market analysis tells them that the demand for a campaign layer to their CM games is not high enough to justify the risk and the cost of producing one. My recent experience backs up what they were telling me, so it is best to create something that can reach a wider market in hopes of making something close to sustainable. That is why my goal has been to create a standalone operational level game that has features built in to allow flexibility for playing out tactical battles. In other words if I can appeal to multiple niche markets then we have a chance.
Edited by choppinlt
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Hello snarre! Is the project dead? No... I am actively trying to get the programming help I need to make it happen. We had a programmer and on the eve of full development a couple years ago he had to back out for personal reasons. So I have been trying to find a developer, but funding is the primary limiting factor. So while this project is not dead, I must add that we haven't gone far with development in the last few years. The game mechanics are ready, we just need a programmer (or a war chest to hire one) to make this happen.

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I tried a Kickstarter in 2015 and it failed. Perhaps my biggest takeaway was that people needed to see the game in action before they would consider funding it....but a lack of initial funding prevents development of a tangible prototype. Though I am having various conversations on contracting for a prototype, so I may revisit crowdsourcing before this is all over.

I will add that while this project has been in limbo, it feels like I am only a step or two away from development. I have met and talked to a lot of names in the war gaming  business who have been quite helpful, to include the guys here at BFC. So all of this will be helpful once the dam breaks on getting a developer. 

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Thanks, i hope we find someone too! I will clarify that I have found several developers willing to do this. But the key is to find the right developer, at the right price, at the right time. So it is that combination that has been difficult thus far. Feel free to check in at any time, as you can see I do monitor this thread.

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I think you need to have a programmer on board who will work on this project as a hobby - at least until you can present something tangible. Look at how the mod teams for many games are putting in a lot of hours just out of love for the game.

Not very helpful, I know :)

Edited by Bulletpoint
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Yes, but do you know where I can find one of those? 😀 I had a local dedicated programmer for this project....and then life get's in the way! I have been doing a lot of searching lately in particular. I have gotten plenty of interest, but finding the person with the right skills, motivation and perhaps most importantly price has been elusive. But the search goes on.

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