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Question about forest tiles in master maps


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I see in several (all?) of the master maps, the map maker has chosen to make a ring of heavy wood tiles around most forest areas while the inner area is filled with light forest tiles and grass. What is the purpose of this? Is it to help pathfinding for the ai? 

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I can't remember if I used that technique extensively for mine (Stavelot, Noville, Noville Winter, and all of the Aachen maps). If so, it would be to simulate the thicker brush and young tree growth at the forest edge. I made sure to leave openings for pathing. The inner areas are a mix due to the variance in tree density, and for areas that have a bit more brush, etc..  I actually spoke to some of the faculty from the Forestry school in the university that I teach at about general forest patterns. They agreed that depicting a forest as such with the tools I had was most realistic.

The forests in these areas were cultivated through centuries. There are lots of rows of trees, and a decent amount of order to the woods in the areas depicted. So "Light Woods" seems a better choice than dense for the inner forests. That said- it is a wild area, so it should be varied.

Also- aesthetic consideration and gameplay factor into this. I don't use huge blocks of any tile, because it gets visually repetitive to my eye, and I like the thought that there is going to be combat in these areas- it should be varied in interesting as well.

 

Edited by benpark
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And- in general, vehicles should have a hard time in these areas, so heavy forest blocks their entering the tile. As well as heavy rocks, which I have placed among the woods (and other rocky tiles). Bogging, immobilization will be distinct possibilities in the woods.

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I was just reading into this for a mission ... 

In "Riviera to the Rhine" the authors describe the Parroy Forest as unlike most western European forests in that it displayed thick undergrowth over topped by secondary forest of hard wood and a few pines. So the outer ring you are seeing in the maps might simulate early growth and brush that can be quite thick. But in most cases in Europe it gives way to tree trunks from much older trees and lighter undergrowth since less light filters to older forest floors. So those maps appear to accurately reflect the common terrain. Light and heavy forest tiles are meant to be thick ground cover/undergrowth to be placed under trees or border other items like walls and fences. Heavy forest tiles under trees also helps the designer limit LOS/LOF through stands of woods if that turns out to be a design goal. 

Kevin

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For the Stoumont map, on which used this ring of heavy forest my reasoning was very simple - I didn't want armour, either AI or player controlled roaming deep inside the large forested areas on the map.

Secondary benefits were that of representing the denser belt of undergrowth often seen at the edges of wooded areas and to degrade LOS to/from units further inside the wood.

 

P

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