TI3 VASSAL module.

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bsmith
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TI3 VASSAL module.

Post by bsmith » Sun Apr 02, 2006 1:40 am

Hey guys. The VASSAL module is located here:

http://lancegatlin.org/TI3_VASSAL/

The VASSAL home page is here:

http://www.vassalengine.org

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TaleSpinner
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Post by TaleSpinner » Thu Aug 10, 2006 11:21 am

Hmm.. do you program with VASSAL, bsmith?

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Post by bsmith » Thu Aug 10, 2006 1:37 pm

Yeah I actually fixed up the zoom feature a couple of years ago. It always bugged me how zooming out in VASL/VASSAL was unusable due to the crappy image quality so I brushed up my Java skills and fixed it. Learned a lot about image processing! I'm quite proud of that. I later added the zoom function to Megamek. You can't have an online boardgame without being able to view the board from different aspects!

Since then I've contributed a few minor fixes to VASSAL and also created the OCS - Tunisia module.

What about you?

Ben

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Post by bsmith » Thu Aug 10, 2006 1:43 pm

Incidentally, I didn't create the TI3 VASSAL module. We tried to get a PBEM game going but as it turned out the card text was not put into the module (FFG disallowed it). This meant those of us not owning the game would not be able to play.


Ben

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Post by TaleSpinner » Thu Aug 10, 2006 2:18 pm

I found out about VASSAL via BBG when I was looking around for game engines that could support card games. Basically, I was trying to create an online version of "Dungeoneer" (yes, I was pretty obsessed over it). I'd just handed over my last project to a bunch of other developers (I'd written an online text-based MMORPG game called Heroes of Ardania. In the end, I passed it over to other fan-developers who are currently maintaining/developing new content).

Eventually, I went with what I knew (ASP) and created Dungeoneer Online where players could create and play with their own decks.

This was a year or two back. Was in contact with the actual game designer for a while (he was interested in creating a pay-to-play Dungeoneer site) but after several play-testing rounds, the project sort of faded because there were several game mechanics that really didn't translate well in an ASP web environment. Right now, it's on the back-burner.

On hindsight, I might have gone with VASSAL, just wasn't keen on re-learning Java. Given what I've seen being achieved with VASSAL over the past year though, I'm beginning to re-consider the value of picking it up. Given that it's open source, the Dungeoneer game designer might not be so keen on distributing his game on it, but hey - I'm just doing stuff because I'm a fan who can. ;)

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Post by bsmith » Thu Aug 10, 2006 2:31 pm

The lesson I've learned is to create and release the module first and ask questions later :) Once it's in the public domain and a few people have distributed it... then there's nothing they can do except sit back and watch. That's the beauty of the Internet!

I wanted to create a Star Fleet Battles VASSAL module ages ago because the SFB Online game is just so crap. So I asked the game developers what they thought and was met with rude replies from a bunch of hardcore trekkies. They told me a team of lawyers from Paramount would come down on me like a ton of bricks. In hindsight I would have been better off creating the module then releasing it on the net anonymously. That way I could actually play SFB over the net with a half-decent interface!


Ben

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Post by TaleSpinner » Thu Aug 10, 2006 2:49 pm

bsmith wrote:The lesson I've learned is to create and release the module first and ask questions later :) Once it's in the public domain and a few people have distributed it... then there's nothing they can do except sit back and watch. That's the beauty of the Internet!
How true. With Heroes of Ardania, I took the game world and graphics from an old PC game called "Majesty: The Fantasy Kingdom Sim". Contacted the Marketing Director of Cyberlore Studios (the game developers) and told him what I was doing. Fortunately, he seemed pretty cool about it given that it was a completely different game (M:TFKS was an RTS, while HOA is an RPG), just using the same graphics, and it was non-profit. Heck, it was free marketing for them, really.

Later, Cyberlore Studios morphed into another company and people in charge like that Marketing Director moved on. The rights to using Majesty graphics/names became a major worry for HoA fans. However, one of them (a lawyer by trade) advised us that in this matter, it was best "not to stir the swamp to see what bubbles come up". i.e. worry about copyright infringements only when someone come knocking, but for now, just keep on developing. Chances are, with Majesty hardly a popular game and HoA being technically a fan-site, no one will bother.

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Post by bsmith » Thu Aug 10, 2006 3:13 pm

Yeah that's a great effort getting the site off the ground. It looks excellent, I'll have to give the game a try someday. The next question I was going to ask was who created the artwork...

The parts of the VASSAL engine which need the most work are those which have not been released as open source. In specific the interface. How nice would it be to go straight from the server browser into a game without having to load the module first? It's a very simple thing to implement, maybe only half a day's work. Just tell people to dump their modules in a standard modules directory. My view is usability should be a priority, but for the creator of VASSAL it doesn't seem to be :(


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Post by TaleSpinner » Thu Aug 10, 2006 3:29 pm

bsmith wrote:Yeah that's a great effort getting the site off the ground. It looks excellent, I'll have to give the game a try someday. The next question I was going to ask was who created the artwork...
HoA started off several years ago with solely Maj graphics. Since then, a number of fans have contributed fan-art for new monsters/items/locations etc. One thing I've learnt from this is never underestimate the fans as a resource.
bsmith wrote:The parts of the VASSAL engine which need the most work are those which have not been released as open source. In specific the interface. How nice would it be to go straight from the server browser into a game without having to load the module first? It's a very simple thing to implement, maybe only half a day's work. Just tell people to dump their modules in a standard modules directory. My view is usability should be a priority, but for the creator of VASSAL it doesn't seem to be
Heh, well I suppose I should take a look at VASSAL some time. I'm really impressed over the number of game modules that have been created using VASSAL.

In my experience, a sole developer tends to concentrate only on things he deems are cool features or big issues. And then he takes a "break" for a couple of weeks before returning to his project. In other words, if you really want that feature, just continue bugging him about it in the VASSAL forums and eventually, he'll think it's a big issue. ;)

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Re: TI3 VASSAL module.

Post by louis » Mon Nov 26, 2007 3:38 pm

Hi Ben,

Could you please tell me where can get I your TI3 module?

Many thanks,
Louis
bsmith wrote:Hey guys. The VASSAL module is located here:

http://lancegatlin.org/TI3_VASSAL/

The VASSAL home page is here:

http://www.vassalengine.org

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