Open General
by Luis Guzman

GAME FEATURES

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Game features summary (most of them optionally defined at design time )

Design features:

  • More Victory Conditions, can be defined. See Victory Conditions
  • More campaigns options. See Campaigns options
  • Campaigns can include specific choice-scenario types. See Choice Scenarios
  • Weather can be defined with custom climate zones. Ground condition can be set to change according weather. Ground can be Dry, Frozen or Mud. See Weather
  • Can define up to 32 fronts and 32 factions. See Fronts/Factions
  • New Score system. See Score
  • Automatic autosave at the end of player turn and after scenario finished
  • Scenario can be saved/reloaded after finished or while in HQ
  • All battle actions can be saved to a special .xlog file in order to replay later.
  • Base year can be defined in equipment file
  • Option to set a cap to number of units in scenarios for each player.

Units features:

  • More leader types. See Leaders
  • More equipment special attributes for units. See EfileSpecials
  • Units can hire/drop 2 attachments in scenarios. See Attachments
  • Some guns can fire to enemy guns in support of friend units. See Counter Battery fire (CBF)
  • New "Containers" concept, allowing to define true "carriers" as well as ground and air contrainers. See Containers
  • Transports/Containers and units can be assigned "weights" to isolate units using some Transports/Containers. See Weights
  • Planes can be intercepted while moving by enemy fighters and optinally also by ground units. See Interception
  • Some units can convert some terrain types to Port, Bridge, Airfield or Fortification (build feature).
    Bridges, Airfields, Ports and Cities, can be blown up by some units. Blown hexes can be repaired too. See Blow/Repair/Build
  • Some units can fire to empty hexes. See Barrage/Bombardment
  • Reinforces can be defined to arrive at start of turn (default) or at start of player turn (this way is always set for PBEM).
  • Units can be configured to be a reinforce or to retreat from map at a given turn (disband)
  • New rail, movement method, allowing units to be transported by train transport class, using railways. See Railways
  • Units can be transported by helicopter using new helo transport class
  • Replacement can be defined as "Greens" or "Elite". See Green/Elite replacements
  • There is an alternative Air System based on "missions". See Air System
  • Planes can be defined to use fuel, crashing if running out of it. See Fuel for planes
  • Air units can be defined to extend a zone of control on surrounding hexes.
  • Some units can give additional turn prestige while deployed. Also some hexes can give additional turn prestige
  • Some units can act as a depot (resupply) for same side units
  • Up to 254 countries for equipment files
  • Can define Spot and Range set to zero, to be truly zero (is converted to 1 by default for legacy)
  • Can define if airborne units can drop in a different hex than selected. See Airbore units

Map fatures:

  • Missing maps are now downloaded automatially. See Checking and downloading missing maps
  • Minefields that can be set at design or dropped/cleared by some units. See Minefields
  • Map can include "triggers" hexes. See "trigger" hexes
  • Roads can be defined to also work on impassable hexes.
  • Line Of Sight (LOS) and Line of Fire (LOF) can be configured different than PG2. See LOS/LOF
  • Customizable prestige award for capturing hexes
  • Dialog showing the active turn, can show customizd messages for every turn
Remember to check equipment special attributes and $Vars for config files (.CFG)

Victory Conditions OpenGen will end the scenario as soon as any of these contions is fulfilled:
  1. Killing all enemy units
    This is condition is always enabled
  2. Taking all Victory Hexes (VH) within specific turns (BV,V,TV,LS)
    This condition has no effect if the next one (Holding...) is enabled
  3. Holding a number of VH after last turn.
    Result depends on how many VH the player holds
    This victory condition should be enabled on scenario file.
  4. Retreating a given number of units through EH (escape hexes) for BV, V or TV
    This victory condition should be enabled in scenario file, and at least one EH should be defined
  5. Killing all enemy unit marked as "Must Survive Units" (MSU)
    This should also be enabled in scenario and at least 1 unit should be marked as MSU.

Note. Victory conditions 2 and 3 are alternative, so if VH to hold is enabled, taking all VH won't finish the scenario

Choice scenarios

This is a special scenario type using .xsch as suffix, to be added to campaign path in any slot designer wants to run choices.
.xsch files define a map to show in game and a list of choices (no hard coded limited).

Choice scenarios do not define any cap nor date, the only options are:

  • Can increase/reduce prestige additional to the one awarded in previous scenario.
  • Can define any choice to be played only once

For each option to pick, a flag will be painted in map to click and pop a dialog showing some info about the choice.

You can close the dialog to open another option and once you click on OK button, choice will be close and scenario slot for that choice will start as if it had followed in the campaign path - that is prototypes are not checked in the .xsch scenario but in the one you selected to go on.

Campaign's options

Campaign can define up to 4 players, and AI can use up to 3 players

Can also define units to become core on any scenario of a campaign, not only in deployed hexes in first scenario

At design time, these options can be defined for any scenario in the campaign

  • Can define to reset all core units on any scenario, as it first scenario will be replayed
  • Normally, units will be refit at start of next scenario, but this can be disabled f
  • Normally, units will be resupplied at start of next scenario, but this can be disabled f
  • Can allow to upgrade and overstrength in Supply Heses (SH) after initial HQ is closed
  • Can define to change country of core units
  • can define to don't score. Usually because it is a "Choice" scnenario to choose a campaign path(
  • Can disable the possibility to upgrade units
  • Can disable the possibility to purchase new units
  • Can disable the possibiliy to sell prototypes

Blow/Repair/Build

Each option requires to be enabled on scenario file, so some scenarios could be designed to allow blow and repair but not enabled for building, or could be enabled to build but not to repair. Any of these actions require the unit being in the hex to blow, repair or build.

Units having equipment file's special "Can Blow" special attribute can blow up Bridges, Airports, Cities and Ports.

Units having "Build/Repair" special attribute can either repair blown hexes or convert terrain to be Bridge, Airports, Ports or Fortification (build). Building require to spend prestige, whcih can be customized by using .CFG files (see Minefields

Mines are  implemented as a new terrain attribute. Can be defined in scenarios at design time, but can also be dropped by certain units.

Mines can be dropped by:

Units that can drop minesDrFor Land mines:

Any land unit (not naval) having "DropMine" attribute and at least 1 ammo, can drop land mines
Any naval unit having "DropMine" attribute and at least 1 ammo, can drop sea mines
Any air unit having "DropMine" and "AirDropMine" attributes and at least 1 ammo, can drop sea mines
Any air unit having "DropMine" and "AirDropMine" attributes and at least 1 ammo, can drop land mines if CFG define SVar: air_landmines>0
To drop mines, the unit must be in the minefield. This action can be taken after move, but not after combat or reinforce/resupply

Mines can be removed by:

Any land unit (not naval) having "ClearMine" attribute can try to remove land mines
Naval units having special atribute "ClearMine" can remove sea mines
To remove mines, the unit must be in the minefield, but not always will success and if no success, unit can suffer some loses.

Minefields have no side, so they can damage any unit regardless which side dropped it

Minefields have these effects in game:

  • Entering spotted minefields (ground/sea) require spend full movement (cost 254, like rivers)
  • Entering un-spotted minefield can cause some losses - up to 3 strength points - depending on unit experience and engineer attribute
  • When any unit is on a minefields its movement is limited to 1 and gets reduced its defense by 3.
This action can be taken after move, but not after combat or reinforce/resupply.

Barrage Fire (Bombard)

Scenario must enable this optional feature.
Then, artillery units and capital ships, having non zero "bomber size" value (same than level bombers), can fire to empty hexes in order to blow up bridges, towns, airfields,... on that hex.
Also when bombarding an enemy VH or SH, barrage can stole some prestige to enemy.

If the hex had any unspotted enemy unit, then:

  • Unit's entrenchment is reduced by 2
  • Unit strength can suffer up to 1 strength point - although cannot be destroyed by this action
  • Unit can suffer some lasting suppression
  • Unit can get reduced ammo and fuel
Interception

Planes can be intercepted while moving by enemy Fighter class units (Out of the Sun) when moving adjacent to unspotted enemy fighter

But when scenario option: "Air units can be intercepted while movin" is enabled, planes can be also intercepted by ground units while moving. Only these units can intercept planes when moving:

  • Air Defense(AD) class units
  • FlaK class units
  • Ground units having "Can AIR attack" special attribute
  • Ground units having "AD Support" special attribute
  • Destroyer, Carrier and Cruisers class units, when scenario option "DD,CV. and LC can fire as Flaks"

As default planes can be intercepted by units above when:

If ground unit is hidden and plane enters any surrounding hex. Plane can go on flying after fired.
If ground was spotted and plane stops upon the ground unit or on any surrounding hex.
But $Var: g2a_intercept_mode can modify this default behavior. See Config Files

LOS and LOF

For compatibility with existing scenarios made for PG2, Mountains, Cities and Forest blocks LOS (line of fire) at range 2 only, and don't block LOS (line of sight).

But scenarios can enable to allow Mountains, Cities and Forest to block LOF to any hex behind at any range

Also scenarios can enable blocking LOS:

  • Mountain, Hills, Cities and Units having equipment special attribute "Cut LOS", cut spotting behind to ground units
  • Forest cannot be spotted by ground units into from distance>1
  • Forest and Cities cannot be spotted by air units from distance >2

Alternative Air Missions

Scenarios must enable this alternative air system. Planes don't use fuel to move in this alternative system, instead planes must be assigned an air-base to return and resupply.

Air base can be any of these:

  • Air Supply Hexes (owned airfields and surrounding hexes when no dirt-airfield
  • Dirt airfields
  • Carriers
At start of scenario or whenever a plane can't get an air-base, any deployed plane not located in a valid "air-base" is moved to HQ.

When player selects a plane, a floating menu pops up showing possible mission choices (similar to blow/build/repair menu).
The possible missions are:

Mission Description
None Plane will refit at the end of player turn
Change Base
(move to another free ASH)
This would allow to fly, within full movement range, to another free air-base.
Normal Move/Attack/Bombard Almost the same than normal system, except plane will return automatically to its air-base at the end of enemy turn
Recon fly Plane will fly to spot some hex. Plane will not be attacked or intercepted from spotted enemies, but can be intercepted by hidden fighters and AD/Flak if interception option is enabled. If intercepted they will abort the mission flying back to air-base. Once fly is completed they will return immediately to air-base.
Planes require an special attribute to be defined in efile for this mission type
Wild-Weasel PPlane will fly to attack ground AD/Flaks. Plane will not be attacked or intercepted from spotted enemies, but can be intercepted by hidden fighters and AD/Flak if interception option is enabled. If intercepted they will abort the mission flying back to air-base.
No Air Defense nor interceptors will support defender during the attack and once attack is completed they will return immediately to air-base.
Planes require an special attribute to be defined in efile for this mission type
Supply ground units Plane will fly to supply the friend ground unit under plane.At the end of enemy player turn, it would fly back to air-base
Planes require an special attribute to be defined in efile for this mission type.

Supply of planes will only happen when it has not played any mission (not moved) at the end of player turn or manually like you do now.

When unit is embarked in Air Transport, player should move and disembark it (option to disembark keeps enabled after movement), otherwise unit will be carried back to the air-base and disembarked there. If unit is not airborne, only airfield terrain will be selected to move, so player should check carefully the map as some hexes can be hardly noticed.

Planes will return to their base automatically, and will find an alternative one if their air-base is not available. If found any out of range they will fly anyway but with some loses and if no one is found, they will withdraw from map, although will be available for next scenario if core units.

Railways

Railways is done as a map layer similar than roads, so they can be defined on any terrain and any hex can define both roads and rails

Map can define also rail stations (stations for short) as main bases for embark / disembark in trains. This is also a map layer, so it can be set on any terrain having railways. Stations can be also built by sappers during game if building is enabled

Units must load/unload using stations although efile designers can use a new special attribute "No Station needed" to make units able to load/unload on any railway hex

Unit can carry their organic transport when loading/unloading at stations, but cannot carry when loading out of stations unless transport has also the "No Station needed" special attribute. So if unit has "No Station needed" attribute and transport has not, then embarking/disembarking out of Station would mean losing the transport, but if transport also have "No Station needed" attribute unit could carry it.

Same than for roads, cost to enter each terrain using rails can be defined using TerrainEx.txt file.

Trains is a non-organic transport and so it requires to be configured at design time how many trains can be used at any time (trains pool) similar to air and naval transport

Trigger hexes

New scenario map data can define any hex as be a "trigger" so any ground unit entering that hex will trigger the action defined

These are the current trigger types available:

Trigger type Action
Replacements Replenish strength, fuel and ammo
Gain prestige Player increase prestige according designer setting
Gain experience Unit gets random experience or defined by parameter
Raise leader Unit can get a random leader if available
Prototype Units available from next month to current scenario date with a 9 months time frame, or defined by parameter
Change AI stance Parameter not meaningful, just toggles AI stance
Extra spot Reveals to the player for one turn (spy info on enemy ) a random or defined by designer radio of map hexes
Raise aux unit A new unit is raised adhacent to hex, according designer settings
Raise core unit A new core unit is raised adhacent to hex, according designer settings

When player's unit enters a trigger-hex, a pop up message will inform on what happened, but not when AI does

Counter Battery fire (CBF)

It works this way:

  1. When any artillery or surface-ship fires to enemy unit, counter battery fire (CBF) is checked
  2. First enemy unit having CBF attribute able to fire to attacker, will fire using half of its strength, as far as it has not made another CBF in that turn yet
Thus:
  • Only 1 unit can fire as CBF each combat.
  • Any unit can fire as CBF only once per turn.
  • Only artillery can do CBF to another artillery
  • Only ships can do CBF to other ships.

Containers

Container is any unit having at least one hangar/dock. Equipment file can define up to 6 hangars for containers.

Containers can host only planes (air units) by default and can be configured as land, naval or air units
By using $Var: ground_carrier also ground units an be hosted in land/naval containers (see Config files

When a carrier has define any number of hangars, planes ending movement over the carrier, land on it, being moved into a free hangar, so another plane can land on it too.

Planes in hangar will be resuplied automatically at the end of turn as if they were upon an airfiled or normal carrier.

By right-clicking in the carrier, planes can be checked and selected to be renamed, resupplied or reinforced manually (as if they were on anormal carrier) and also can be lanched to the air again (takeoff the carrier) using a menu-button.

If a carrier is sunken, any plane inside any of the hangars will be killed too.

In campaign mode any plane inside a carrier, will be unlinked and put in HQ, even if both the carrier and plane are core units being carried over next scenario. Also if campaign define "Overstrength and Upgrade units at SH" planes inside carrier's hangar can upgrade/overstrength as far as new unit is also able to deploy in carriers.

These carriers can be use with Air Missions also, serving as base for as many planes as hangars they have.

Green/Elite replacements

This is an optional feature allowing to use "green" (cheaper but less experienced) or "elite" (more expensive but experienced) replacements.

Settings must be enabled and configured using .cfg files by defining certain $Vars to modify default behaviors.

  • Cost for green replacements, default=25%
  • Cost for elite replacements, default=100% (so you could set as 150% for elite and 100% for green).
  • The percentaje of green replacements that will come with same experience that unit. Default 0.
  • Limit for unit experience. Here default could be 599 or 65535.
  • Factor for bars reducing experience gained in combat, default 0 (no decrease)
    but can set as 10 (50% for 5 bars) or even 20 making no experience increasing once unit gets 5 bars
  • If Leaders must be removed when unit loses all bars, default=0.
  • If automatic refit on next scenario should use greens, default=0 (use elite)
    ... as far as campaign option to "disable autorefit" is not enabled.

Fuel for planes

There is no scenario nor EFile option to enable this, it is enough that equipment has any value. Besides not every plane need to work the same,  efiles could define fuel for only a few planes.
When a plane is defined to use fule, it must spend fuel to move or to stand out of an airfield/carrier.

This is how it works:

  • Planes with fuel assigned in the EFile will get their movement limited as any other unit, (PG2 did this already) as it needs fuelto move and stay flying.
  • When a plane needs fuel to move, it will spend a minimum of 1/3 of it's movement allowance per turn.
  • When a plane needs fuel to move, it will crash at the end of player's turn if it is at zero fuel and is not on, or adjacent to, an Airfield or Aircraft carrier.
  • "Fuel warning" marker will appear on the map, when a plane starts getting low on fuel, and will indicate all positions where plane won't be able to fly back from to refuel before crashing.

Fronts / Factions (F/F)

This is a mechanism to check if a unit can mount/embark/park in a given transport/container.

Any unit having front=zero is compatible with any other front, and same for faction, thus any unit having zero for both F/F is compatible with any other unit.

Fronts and Factons are assigned by Efile designers to units,and by scenario designers to countries and then inherited by units in the scenario. Then game uses Front/Factions as a filter (like date, or country) to allow/deny: purchases, upgrades, embarking in pool transports, landing in carriers/dirt-airfields, entering container's hangars, either while moving or deploying.

Visit topic: Fronts and Factions to read more detailed how they work and how to set up.

Scores

To score player perfomance, Open General includes a formula to score perfomance, which is saved in two score files:

* OpenHigh.scr will keep 5 best scores played.
* OpenLast.scr will keep last 5 scores played.

Can reset these scores by removing any of the files.

The formula use these factors, assigning bonus/penalties to score:

  • According Scenario Result:
    Result Bunus/penalty
    BV +50
    V +30
    TV +19
    LS -10
  • According Prestige modifier:
    Modifier for Player for AI
    300 -16 +16
    275 -14 +14
    250 -12 +12
    225 -10 +10
    200 -8 +8
    175 -6 +6
    150 -4 +4
    125 -2 +2
    100 - -
    75 +10 -10
    50 +20 -20
    25 +30 -30
    0 +40 -40
  • According number of turns before limit: +2 points per turn before limit
  • According killed units pondered with Army cost:
    • Killed enemy units give a bonus = Total cost of enemy killed / Player's Army cost
    • Killed Aux units give a penalty = Total cost of Aux killed / Player's Army cost
    • Number of core units gives a penalty = Number of core units /10

Scenario score is optionally included in AAR and dossier window.

Checking and downloading missing maps.

By default every time you start a campaign, Open General will check mapfiles and map pictures to be sure you have none missing. if any is missing it will try to download and install from a map repository on web-server using HTTP. This is done by a background process and it will log any file downloaded or any file missing. Maybe you need to configure your firewall and/or proxy to allow it to work.  his automatic check can be disabled by mean of a check-box available on "Pick Campaign" dialog. On this dialog there are also two useful buttons to check for the campaign you have highlighted missing files. One button just check and report files, and the second, will also check but will try to download any missing map too.

Efile folder now can include a MAP private folder for no official maps. Only png/jpg are allowed though.

Weights

Units can be assigned a "weight" to isolate which units can use a given transport or container. Weigths are implemented as bit-type data. Thus only certain planes can land in some carriers, but not in every carrier.

Enhanced Naval rules

There is an scenario option to make:

  • Destroyers protect naval transports
  • Submarines cannot be attacked from range>1
  • Submarines need direct line of fire)
Airborne units

When this option is enabled, airborne units dropping on not airfield hex, have a chance to actually drop in a different hex than the one player select. Probability for normal drop is affected by:

  • weather:
    • 70% if weather is good
    • 40% if overcast
    • 30 if raining
    • 20% if snowing
  • Unit's bars, +5% for each bar
  • if unit has leader adds +5%

If unit fails to drop on desired position, it can finish on any of the six surrounding hexes the unit can enter (so no impassable rivers or escarpments) randomly selected. When this result in the unit being dropped into an hex occupied by an unspotted enemy unit, airborne fights a surprise combat against that enemy

Weather

Weather is set according the climate-zone set in the scenario. There are 7 climate zones that can be configured by using external file: Weather.txt

Each climate zone defines 4 parameters which drive the weather in Open General:

  • Average clear period (AvgClearPeriod), in turns
  • Average overcast period (AvgOvercastPeriod), in turns
  • Probability of snow (ProbOfSnow), in percent
  • Probability of precipitation (ProbOfPrecip), in percent

Parameters work together to determine the weather for each particular turn.

1.
Clear and overcast periods occur one after another: [Clear][Overcast][Clear][Overcast] etc. Initial period (clear or overcast) is specified in scenario file.
Duration of each period (in turns) is determined using this formula:  Period = ((r1+r2+r3+r4)+2)/2, but always between AvgPeriod/2 and 3*AvgPeriod/2
Here AvgPeriod means AvgClearPeriod for clear period or AvgOvercastPeriod for overcast period. r1, r2, r3 and r4 are random numbers between 0 and AvgPeriod-1.
In other words, game rolls dice 4 times and sum the results.

2.
Each overcast period is assigned a certain precipitation type (PrecipType) - rain or snow. Probability of snow is ProbOfSnow and  hence probability of rain is 100%-ProbOfSnow.
Once assigned, precipitation type never changes. This means that it is not possible to have both rain and snow during the same overcast period.

3.
On each turn during an overcast period the game determines if rain or snow actually falls. Probability of rain or snow is specified by the last weather parameter - ProbOfPrecip.

4.
When scenario option "Weather can change ground condition" is set, the game uses a internal - WaterLevel to check if to "State" of the ground:

  • WaterLevel starts as 0 and is adjusted every turn:
  • WaterLevel = WaterLevel + 2, but never >5 (if rain or snow)
  • WaterLevel = WaterLevel - 2, but never <0 (if clear)
  • WaterLevel = WaterLevel - 1, but never <0 (if overcast and PrecipType is rain)
  • WaterLevel not changed (if overcast and PrecipType is snow)
  • When WaterLevel gets above 2, the ground becomes mud or frozen (depending on PrecipType selected for the current overcast period).
  • When WaterLevel gets below 3, the ground becomes dry. This means that the ground can never be mud/frozen on the first turn.
    Even if there is rain or snow, one turn will pass before WaterLevel gets above 2.