Home Forums General PC and Console Gaming Computer moderated miniatures games

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    Avatar photovtsaogames

    Not sure this is the right board, but:

    I recently played in a game of Carnage & Glory. Each player had to give pertinent data to the GM who entered it into his laptop and reported results. As the game went on, players’ attention wandered. Some couldn’t recall if they had already fired this turn. The GM had to check, etc.
    The single point of data entry slowed the game down.

    I read something about a guy working on a system of linked tablets, so each player could enter data called Electronic Brigadier. It is on Facebook, which I avoid for various reasons. Also, the last post there was in 2015.

    Victrix is working on a platoon level WWII game that runs on an iPhone. I have an Android.

    Anyone else know of commercially available computer moderated systems? Hopefully that don’t require advanced study to operate?

    It's never too late to have a happy childhood

    Avatar photoWright R/C

    I’m the author and programmer of Electronic Brigadier. The Facebook group for the game is https://www.facebook.com/groups/1170239550488615  and it is active. I post there regularly including hosting two games this past month-ish at local New England conventions. Whatever other Facebook content you found may have been cross linked to other groups.

    As far as the rules go, I originally created them for personal use, but recently I’ve been making great progress towards making them available publicly. I still have a ways to go on that effort, but I have started with some local gamers as my beta testers.  Making this available to people other than myself necessitated moving it to the Amazon cloud, and also hitching it up to Google authentication (log in with your Gmail account).

    Currently I only have American War of Independence fully play tested and perfected, but I am in progress on completing American Civil War and also Napoleonics with the latter having the furthest to go to be perfected.



    Avatar photoWright R/C

    Oh, I also have a YouTube channel with a playlist dedicated to Electronic Brigadier, if you want to see some clips of people playing the game: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4TZcqmVztLI&list=PLhV0euZTTol4bOBjD7EtE6fu0fwax2UXZ



    The thing about computer moderation in wargames is that they are damned hard to tinker with if you dislike or disagree with something rather subjective that the designer may or may not have done or included as a mechanic for simulation purposes.  Things like the probability of forming a hasty square before the cavalry reach you if you are only militia infantry, or even the effective range of musketry or skirmish troops effectiveness are often just black boxes.  No easy way to pencil in a new house rule or change to suit your taste.

    Mick Hayman
    Margate and New Orleans

    Avatar photoJohn D Salt

    The thing about computer moderation in wargames is that they are damned hard to tinker with


    I suspect a lot of people are already more familiar than they want to be with my attitude to game assistance programs (GAPs). Even so I hope they might be mildly amused by an outburst I directed a while ago at an old university friend now residing in Western Australia (he was one of my University Challenge team at Exeter in 1983). He used to play naval wargames using a GAP on a DOS machine, and he and some friends had played a whole bunch of battleship engagements from alternate history wars of the 1920s. They now wanted to get into an alternate WW2 starting in 1932 and including hypothetical battleship designs not limited by Washington Treaty provisions. As he had a copy of the compiled program, he hoped that, if he sent it to me, I might be able to crack the copy protection, de-compile the program, and revise it to meet his new desiderata. He asked me “any chance you can break, enter, and update?”

    This is the reply I sent him:

    Absolutely none whatever. Evidently you believe in that wonderful Hollywood world where the computer nerd in a gang of chippy little teenagers is asked to “hack into the mainframe”, and after frowning and filling in a couple of text boxes and clicking a couple of keys trumphantly announces “We’re in!” Unfortunately real life doesn’t work like that; I can’t even get into my own bank account that easily.

    What you ask is quite impossible, for a number of excellent reasons any one of which would be sufficient on its own:

    1. I am off work on sick leave. I cannot do paid work for myself; I’m certainly not doing unpaid work for someone else.

    2. The IPR still seem to belong to A*** D****** and/or his clown successor, so what you ask appears to be illegal and immoral.

    3. I have no knowledge, skill, or interest in decompiling programs, least of all DOS programs in an unspecified language. I’m a Unix wizard, dammit.

    4. Even if the program were successfully decompiled, you have given me no documentation that would give any clue how it is designed.

    5. I do not wish to encourage the existence or use of GAPs. Put the representation on a computer or put it on the tabletop, don’t split it across the two. It just creates a lot of work for the players translating between the two representations. Having the humans do such menial work while the computer does the interesting part reverses the natural order of things and encourages the “clever machines, stupid people” approach that wrecks everything.

    6. I do not wish to encourage what I regard as fantasy power gaming with never-built superships that had excellent reasons for never being built. People who indulge in such things I too often find have an absurdly inflated regard for day-tripper navies like the Kriegsmarine and an endless list of reasons why the Royal Navy was always vastly inferior to every navy it has ever beaten for the last three hundred years.

    Damned hard to tinker with, indeed.

    All the best,


    Avatar photoMartinR

    Ah, that reminds me of the good old days of patching binary files. I did actually have a DOS binary editor, but it was much easier on Unix.

    Personally I never saw the point of GAP, just a lot of extra work, but if it floats your boat…

    "Mistakes in the initial deployment cannot be rectified" - Helmuth von Moltke

    Avatar photovtsaogames

    ‘Evidently you believe in that wonderful Hollywood world where the computer nerd in a gang of chippy little teenagers is asked to “hack into the mainframe”, and after frowning and filling in a couple of text boxes and clicking a couple of keys triumphantly announces “We’re in!” ‘

    On this side of the pond it stems from Star Trek, where Captain Kirk says “computer, what is the secret of the universe?” and gets an immediate answer. Speaking of mainframes, back in days of yore, folks would be amazed when I was able to make changes to headings on their reports in short order. Next they would ask for analysis of information that wasn’t entered in the system and wonder why it wasn’t done immediately.

    It's never too late to have a happy childhood

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