@Argothair said in Grand Plans, 3rd Edition?:
Honestly, I think the best starting map to promote with A&A software would be the version of Pact of Steel that includes Italy and China. If we have to go with an officially published map, I’d pick AA50. If we have to go with an officially published map with no bid, I’d pick Revised.
Haha memory lane. Yeah the pact of steel variant we made is a cool example of what could be accomplished if an editor includes things like an option to add a new player nation. To do that you need custom art assets, but people have a lot of enthusiasm for stuff like that if there is a standardized format for it.
The ability to create actual maps is pretty involved, but that’s like the goose that lays the golden egg if we had tools for that. This is one area where A&Aonline could really pull ahead of what is available within TripleA, since there are real limits to what you can do especially with scaling when you still need that raster graphics baseline map to build off. If A&AOnline gets to the point where they can open things up on that end, with ways to actually draw new maps or adjust the geometry of the tiles, it would be totally killer. But I think that’s probably more for the master wishlist of where it could go in the end.
For a basic editor on the map level, you can really do a lot with the 5 man game just with an option to adjust territory production values or adding in new Victory Cities. At the scenario level would be nice to adjust income totals and starting units position. For anyone who doesn’t know what it is, Pact of Steel was a 6 man mod of Revised that included Italy, which came out before AA50. Pact of Steel 2 which Veq modded includes other features introduce with AA50 like objectives and China rules, as well as some stuff from other A&A games like sz convoys and various new units. But anyhow those games just show what can be created depending on what kind of tools there are to mod in more complexity once you have a core map/scenario like Revised or AA50.
I think the most basic thing to make 42 serviceable is a way to adjust starting incomes, since a lot of complex balance issues can be solved that way, even if its not the most refined tool. Given enough money to the Soviets or the Anglo-Americans, you could get a scenario that handles any disparity in player skill or any perceived advantage between team Axis and team Allies. There’s still stuff in the overall play pattern that can’t be really dealt with that way, but least it gives you a tool to work with on the most basic level. Otherwise like I say, the only thing I can think of right now is skipping movement in the first round, but I’m not sure if that would work cause I’ve never really tried it. You’d get some of the features of the Zero Turn for USA that we tried (where you shift the turn order back one turn), but I don’t know how everything holds up if everyone got a purchase round. I guess it would come down to Sea Lion/India Crush, if UK purchase and Russian first combat move could cover an Axis mass transport buy.
ps. adjusting starting income is also probably the only way to make the AI truly competitive once the player gets to a certain level of familiarity. Its really hard for example to teach skynet how to manage the airblitz or stuff like multi-nation attack/defense. But with starting income you can handicap in a solo game vs the machine just like you would in PvP, with more cash up front to even things out.