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Subject: Elegant Force Displays rss

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Andrew Kluck
United States
Hudson
Wisconsin
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Pushing around stacks of tiny toppling chits is just the nature of the beast in our corner of the gaming hobby. But off map force displays have such a great potential to present information and make the game functionally easier to play. Lots of games have boxes, either on the map or off to put units when some location gets crowded. I'm interested in games that cleverly use off map aids to represent on map units whose condition is modified by placing chits on the aids.

Thanks in advance for any recommendations.
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Pokey 64
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Niagara Falls
New York
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Not sure it qualifies but something like Hitler's War?
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Paul Spak
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Spencer
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Carrier uses force displays a lot.


in the upper right, these are the Japanese task force holding boxes.

lower right has the carrier displays, with aircraft in various states of readiness.

lower left has the search boxes, and U.S. task force displays. Also note that there still are some impressive stacks in play on the map.
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Dean Brown
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Spring City
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I created these to track my U-Boat status for U-Boat Leader.


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Keith Rose
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New Malden
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Legend Begins uses off map Division boxes which not only show what units are in the force (represented by a single HQ counter on the board) but also enforce organisational restrictions on the division (ie: max number of armoured/infantry units etc). I also recall the Winter Storm series has off map divisional organisation charts.
Saves pushing round a load of chits and more importantly makes calculation of attack & defence values for the stack far easier.
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Edmund Hon
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Maple
Ontario
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Two games by Victory Games:

In the Fleet Series, stack of ships which contains 2 or more combat vessels can form a Task Group / Task Force. During a bombing or missile attack against a stack of ships the order of the stack is actually important, as a targeted ship within the stack can be shielded by the one stacking immediately underneath it, and this way not just the targeted ship's close-in anti air value, but also the one under it, can be added to the overall defence value to resolve that attack. Essentially, the ship under the target is riding shotgun for the target.



In Pacific War, all combat units are actually placed off map on force displays, to indicate their activation status. Activated ships forms task forces which have two sections, core and screen. During an air attack 4 ships from the screen or 2 from the core can use their flak, so putting ships with strong AA values in the screen becomes important.

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Paul Procyk
Canada
Ottawa (Orléans)
Ontario
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The best example that I can think of comes from the air combat game Birds of Prey: Air Combat in the Jet Age. Players use the Pitch Heading Attitude Display or PHAD to represent three dimensional travel in the vertical and horizontal planes. This then dictates how aircraft are placed on the 2D map to show relative positions between opposing aircraft. The game also extensively uses nomographs to compute the new energy state of the aircraft each game turn based on the conducted air combat manoeuvring and the characteristics from the aircraft data card.



This image shows a PHAD with counters to represent aircraft state. However the PHADs that come with game are laminated and are meant to be marked by the player using pens.
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