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Mars Attacks: The Miniatures Game» Forums » General

Subject: Movement conversion to inches. rss

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Chris
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Does anyone have experience converting movement to inches instead of the grid? Was kind of hoping to use some of my other game mats for this game. I really don't like the paper one that is provided with the base box. Is my only option really to just look for the neoprene on eBay?

I haven't fully read the rules yet, maybe this is a stupid question. If it is I apologize.
 
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Wulf Corbett
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By no means stupid, I have tried it, but I admit not often. Just convert each movement point or range to 3" or 8cm, and area effects to circles of the appropriate diameter.

It does become a bit of an issue with randomised events, but they're easily sorted out if you take a bit of time to work out the table width & depth divided by 8, then use a circular area of effect if appropriate. You only need do it once per table, assuming you remember or write it down... Still makes some events, like the burning cattle stampede, look odd when a relatively small & clearly visible mini affects a figure clearly an inch or more away, but that's common to many minis games.
 
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Barry Miller
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I would THINK that it's more hassle than it's worth. For a few reasons:

- The grid system regulates movement by number of spaces, not distance. So let's say you move 1". That might be zero spaces or it might be one space. For instance, you could be on the edge of a square (i.e., space)... if you move 1" to the left, you've gone into the next square. But if you move 1" to the right, you're still in the same square. Without the grid, how would you know which it is?

The same applies to range. In that same situation, a target 1" to your left would be at range "1". A target 1" to your right OTOH, would be at range "0". (Not that you'd ever find a target only 1" away)! Without the grid to regulate the number of spaces that the minis are from each other (or in the same space), then I don't see how using a measuring stick would work well.

Also consider diagonal vs orthogonal measuring. As an example, given that each space is a 3" x 3" square, if you're (supposed to be) in the bottom left corner of a space, you could move 4" diagonally to your upper right and still be in the same space, thus a "Move 0" action. But if you move 4" to your right instead, you'll have moved into another space, and thus a "Move 1" action.

 
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Chris
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Yeah, I'm mainly thinking about world war and don't want to cough up for the mats. Sounds like more trouble than it's worth though. Is 2 mats enough for most of the battles?
 
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Barry Miller
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I've never been able to get a World War scenario to the table. So all of my games have been played on one mat only. And that's been fine (for me).

I know you said that you don't want to cough up for the mats, but there is one on eBay which is selling for only a dollar more than what the mats cost during the Kickstarter:

http://rover.ebay.com/rover/1/711-53200-19255-0/1?type=4&cam...gPUQAAOSwk5tcoq0n&frcectupt=true

Also, I may know someone who's willing to sell two mats. If interested, GM me.

Edit: After viewing my post, it looks like the BGG text editor is mangling the URL to that eBay listing. So you'd have to quote my post in order to see the full text of the URL.
 
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Reverend Uncle Bastard
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To be honest I have never even used two mats. One is plenty for even a high model count game.

There are a couple of solutions:

1 - You can use any map, but just mark the lines around the exterior of the map using tokens/cubes/etc. The grid spaces are large enough that you can eyeball where they are, this is not a game of tiny distances mattering.

Like this:



2 - Mantic's Deadzone uses the same grids on their maps. You can occasionally find their mats on sale for really cheap, it seems like the game may be going out of production.

There are a couple of the Deadzone neoprene mats on ebay for $20-30 right now. There is an urban one and a desert/mars one. Just like Mars Attacks they are 2'x2' and have the same exact grid pattern. You will recognize the desert style one from some of my session reports.

https://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_from=R40&_trksid=p2322090.m...

I picked up the Infestation - Exham IV expansion on sale for $20, it has the desert/mars style neoprene mat with the same grid as Mars Attacks, plus a bunch of Industrial terrain with the same "clip" system as the urban stuff in Mars Attacks.



If you can find it at discount it is well worth it, the industrial terrain is great and the mats are high quality. I used the industrial terrain in my latest "water pumping station" session of Fallout.
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Wulf Corbett
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bgm1961 wrote:
I would THINK that it's more hassle than it's worth. For a few reasons:

- The grid system regulates movement by number of spaces, not distance.
Irrelevant. We're not using spaces.
Quote:
The same applies to range.
Likewise, irrelevant.
Quote:
Also consider diagonal vs orthogonal measuring.
Equally irrelevant.

You're still thinking boardgame, not gridless miniatures game. If you convert to inches, these are entirely irrelevant issues. We cannot create a literal duplicate of a space-regulated game without spaces, but we certainly can play the same game with measured distances instead of spaces. The only substantial change to the game (apart from freedom of movement and from a limited board setup) would be the need to measure distances instead of eyeballing them. A more difficult game would not permit pre-measurement, an easier game, more in line with the boardgame, would. The 'problems' you list are all actually useful examples of why a gridded system is less fair and less 'realistic'. They're playing the rules, not playing the game.

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Chris
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That mat for mars attacks looks folded. Is it going to end up coming with creases?
 
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Barry Miller
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Wulf Corbett wrote:
bgm1961 wrote:
I would THINK that it's more hassle than it's worth. For a few reasons:

- The grid system regulates movement by number of spaces, not distance.
Irrelevant. We're not using spaces.
Quote:
The same applies to range.
Likewise, irrelevant.
Quote:
Also consider diagonal vs orthogonal measuring.
Equally irrelevant.

You're still thinking boardgame, not gridless miniatures game.

Then you and I are answering two totally different questions. I'm not sure how you got out of his OP, the question you're addressing. He never said that he's looking to convert the game to a gridless miniatures game (i.e., meaning a change to most of the rules).

What I read is someone who wants to play the game as designed, but doesn't want to use the paper mat, and instead wants to use a neoprene mat. But the neoprene mats he has to use don't have the grids. Thus he's looking for a way to play the game [as designed] without the grids. It's important to note that 'Mars Attacks' is a hybrid boardgame/miniatures game. That's what makes it such a great game. If you take away the "boardgame" element (and its rules), then it becomes just another minis game. I never got at all, that that's what he was wanting.

Thus my replies were entirely relevant.

 
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Wulf Corbett
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bgm1961 wrote:
Then you and I are answering two totally different questions. I'm not sure how you got out of his OP, the question you're addressing. He never said that he's looking to convert the game to a gridless miniatures game (i.e., meaning a change to most of the rules).
He stated "Does anyone have experience converting movement to inches instead of the grid? "

That's what I answered. You want to answer the question 'How can I play with a grid when there's none on the mat?' But that's a question you invented.
 
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Barry Miller
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Fair enough. But regarding your ascertation that I "invented" the question I answered. From his post, this is what I was answering:
ogoctopus wrote:
Was kind of hoping to use some of my other game mats for this game. I really don't like the paper one that is provided with the base box. Is my only option really to just look for the neoprene on eBay?

The fact that he was looking at the [Mars Attacks] mats on eBay informed me that he was looking for a way to play Mars Attacks, except without a grid. And if that couldn't work, then he'd buy the mat on eBay [so that he could play the game]. Without the Grid, then the game is no longer Mars Attacks. It's something different.

But we'll (hopefully) just agree to disagree.

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bgm1961 wrote:

But we'll (hopefully) just agree to disagree.



And if you guys can't agree, I would respectfully suggest you start your own thread about this disagreement, or take it to geekmail.
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Idea: set up pins or similar around the outside of your mat (like in the rev's tokens illustration) and then run contrasting thread across the surface of the mat to create a grid before you place terrain etc down. Removable lines.

If it doesn't work out to exactly the inches you want, think of it as "arbitrary unit" instead of "inch" and if it is close enough to satisfy you in terms of visual scale 's all good.
 
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Wulf Corbett
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I remembered one anomaly we found using measured distances - area weapons like the freeze ray. Measuring squares, if your maximum range is 4 (I can't remember what it was really), the ray affects everyone in that square, 4 spaces away, no further. 4 squares would be 12". But if you say it has a range of 12", that would be the centre of an area of effect, thereby theoretically increasing the effect range by 1.5".

However, that assumes the firer is at the edge of his own square nearest the target, so no range is used just to get to the next square. Centre to centre, it's the same. The actual range is more consistent when using measured distances.

Again, no problem simply applying a 1 space = 3" rule.
 
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Barry Miller
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reverendunclebastard wrote:
And if you guys can't agree, I would respectfully suggest you start your own thread about this disagreement, or take it to geekmail.

Thanks for looking out for us, Reverend.

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Chris
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Good to know I have some options for World War. Thanks all for the replies. I did grab a mat for playing the base game scenarios, though. I believe the same desert one Rev linked. I am going to experiment with using 3" per move as well!
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Kevin Riddle

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for the record, Deadzone is definitely NOT dead
they completely sold out of 2 print runs for last years book and having another faction book come out this summer
It's a superb game
my favorite
 
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scout13 wrote:
for the record, Deadzone is definitely NOT dead
they completely sold out of 2 print runs for last years book and having another faction book come out this summer
It's a superb game
my favorite


Thanks for the clarification. I have just seen so much of it on discount recently, and all of the Deadzone links on the Mantic home page are dead links. You can understand why I thought it might be out of production. Mantic really needs to fix the homepage links or I won't be the only one with this impression.
 
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