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  #1  
Old February 22nd, 2021, 11:25 AM

Anton Anton is offline
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Default Interface improvement for area fire

In the current version, you have to press Z and click on the target hex to make each indirect shot, which is inconvenient when you want to fire at the same hex repeatedly. Would it be possible to cause the unit to fire at the last-indicated indirect-fire hex by pressing F (similar to direct fire), thus saving the indication of the target hex for each shot?
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Old February 22nd, 2021, 03:30 PM
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Default Re: Interface improvement for area fire

from the version 12 release notes:

Quote:
A code quirk, some might call it a bug, that allowed players, particularly PBEM players, the ability to Z-Fire or X- Smoke into a hex with on map artillery then go to the bombardment menu and get a 0.1 delay for a full bombardment has been eliminated. It is no longer possible to do that and a side benefit for some players, but perhaps not to the players who loved to do "recon by Z-fire", is that it is no longer possible to Z-fire into a hex then repeat, repeat, repeat using the F key. Every Z fire now needs to be done individually because after a Z-fire the process is now reset to zero after each Z-Fire so that hex cannot be used to circumvent the artillery bombardment routine delay.
So no, the indirect fire hex for the unit is deliberately nullified per Z or X fire shot in order that it cannot be used for the above.
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Old February 22nd, 2021, 06:06 PM

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Default Re: Interface improvement for area fire

Thank you for the explanation, Mobhack. That code quirk is indeed a bug that had to be fixed, but the current solution has the negative side effect of the general inconvenience of Z-fire, including situations where one is not abusing it, for example—firing from MMG through smoke at an enemy unit visible by other friendly units.

I wish you would fix it without introducing an artificial inconvenience into the interface. The correct fix would be simply to exclude from the bombardment screen artillery units that have Z-fired, as you already do those that have direct-fired or moved.
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Old February 22nd, 2021, 06:30 PM
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Default Re: Interface improvement for area fire

The game has no knowledge of who fired Z-fire or X fire. Adding such flags would be exactly the same as the following (new core data).

Adding a new x,y just for Z fire is a fundamental core data change that cannot be easily done without changing all the saved data for every scenario, user saved game, campaigns etc. - In other words, it would have had to have been designed in from the game start back in the 90s.

And it is not just adding 2 bytes - we would then have to go through thousands of lines of combat code adding in tests for the right x.y and sorting out the interactions between it and the old x,y locations. Then go through the AI code checking it is now using the correct x,y pair. (The AI does fire smoke in MBT using the X procedure in response to ATGM, no idea if it fires Z - but it might!).

What is will therefore remain.
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Old February 22nd, 2021, 06:34 PM

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Default Re: Interface improvement for area fire

As one who knows how difficult it may be to introduce a seemingly tiny modification to a large and complicated program, I have no further comments.
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Old February 22nd, 2021, 07:45 PM
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Default Re: Interface improvement for area fire

Quote:
Originally Posted by Anton View Post
In the current version, you have to press Z and click on the target hex to make each indirect shot, which is inconvenient when you want to fire at the same hex repeatedly.
Seriously.... How "inconvenient" is it to press Z+ use the mouse to hold the cursor on the target hex and click the left button to fire?

Z+Left click-Z+Left click-Z+Left click-

Seriously.... that can be done just as quickly as pressing one button repeatedly. Even if it wasn't a PITA to code it's a trivial issue but that is what the game is down to after 20+ years of development
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Old February 23rd, 2021, 06:51 AM

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Default Re: Interface improvement for area fire

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Originally Posted by DRG View Post
Seriously.... How "inconvenient" is it to press Z+ use the mouse to hold the cursor on the target hex and click the left button to fire?

Z+Left click-Z+Left click-Z+Left click-

Seriously.... that can be done just as quickly as pressing one button repeatedly.
Yes, I am serious. Yes, it is very inconvenient, especially when the firer and target are more than a screen away, so that you have to scroll from firer to target hex again and again. After all, WinSPWW2 still supports resolutions from as low as 640x480, where much scrolling around is necessary.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DRG View Post
Even if it wasn't a PITA to code it's a trivial issue but that is what the game is down to after 20+ years of development
Well, details make perfection, and whether anything is hard to do or not—is the problem of the programmer, not of the user. I will cite an example from my own contribution to free software—I am implementing a trivial and obvious function in an MS-DOS emulator—pixel-perfect magnification without either the jaggedness of nearest-neighbor interpolation nor the blur of the bilinear, because low-res pixel-art must be shown in sharp regular pixels.

Now, this upscaling of the emulated display with integer horizontal and vertical scales was very easy to do, but I found it requires that the emulator application be high-DPI aware in order to avoid unwanted zooming by the OS, and when I made it so, the cursor and UI elements became very small of high DPI displays, so I had to implement programmatic generation of the cursor bitmap of a suitable size and an upscaling of the emulator's raster UI. Then I found that different OSes have different limitations on cursor size, which the program has to know about, too. Furthermore, whereas display scale is easy to estimate by querying the desktop dimensions, it is not so with cursor size, which requires analysis of several factors: desktop dimensions, system DPI, and window-specific DPI. The algorithm is further complicated by the need to use OS-specific APIs and unavailability of some of the values on some of the supported OSes.

This shows how difficult it may be to implement such trivial detail as integer magnification, but it is certainly worth it, and it is my headache, not that of my users.
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Old February 23rd, 2021, 07:27 AM
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Default Re: Interface improvement for area fire

It is so rare as to be beyond my experience that I would Z fire "a screen away". That's what zoom out allows you to do....see a larger area of map or is doing that "very inconvenient" as well?

pressing Z puts you into the Z fire mode. Moving the cursor to the target hex is how you aim and pressing the left mouse button is how you fire....it's the way it is and if that is "very inconvenient" ...... well...... then I guess for you it is. For me it's not even in the slightest.
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Old February 24th, 2021, 12:02 AM
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Default Re: Interface improvement for area fire

Quote:
After all, WinSPWW2 still supports resolutions from as low as 640x480, where much scrolling around is necessary.
And who is silly enough to play the game at that resolution its supported because that is the demo.
I would never Z fire at 40 hexes (max machine gun range) but can fit that easily on one screen & its a nice crisp image.
I could zoom out more to over 150 hexes across, the picture is clear enough for me to Z fire on that screen no problem though I just use it for overview & finding puffs of enemy artillery smoke.

My guess its more a case of you get what you pay for - or don't
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Old March 17th, 2021, 06:39 AM
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Default Re: Interface improvement for area fire

Yeah really, are you playing this game on a 15" monitor?
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