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Custom Terrain & Obstacles For Custom terrain, buildings, and other misc. obstacles


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Old May 23rd, 2021, 10:45 PM
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Welcome to the Engineers of Valhalla. Our goal for this project is to bring new Terrain Creations to the world of Heroscape. In this, we will be bringing in new features, to expand map creation opportunities, and create fun new interactions for our beloved heroes.
We will be making depositories of a variety of different types of terrain. As layed out by @Grishnakh , with a big thanks to him for all his work. here is a quick overview of the different categories we hope to expand.



• 4 types of terrain on the battlefield:

1. Terrain Tiles (or just Tiles)
These are the actual tiles that you build the battlefield out of (grass, rock, sand, water, ice, snow, road, lava, lava field, etc.). At the moment I do not have any specific rules regarding these types of tiles other than the normal Heroscape rules associated with those tiles.

2. Objects
These are basically Non-Destructible Objects. They are placed onto the battlefield, but you cannot interact with them, nor destroy them.Some examples would be buildings, trees, large rocks, castle walls, bridges, etc.

3. Interactive Terrain Features (ITFs)
ITFs are terrain that is placed on the battlefield that you can use, or interact with. You can pick up these items and carry them, or use them as weapons. These items are such things as cars, street signs, computer consoles, train cars, equipment "glyphs", etc. (In my system of Interactive Terrain Features they all fit neatly into 1 of 5 categories, or Classes. If you're interested I posted some abbreviated rules recently on my Custom Terrain Thread).

4. Destructible Objects (DOs)
There are only two Destructible Objects (or DOs) associated with the official game, the castle door and the wall section of the ruined warehouse. However, the framework surrounding both of these “destructible parts” (the door and the wall section) are just static “Objects”. I currently do not have any specific rules regarding this type of terrain other than the normal Heroscape rules for them. My group always felt that DOs were way too limiting in what you can actually "do" with them, which is to just destroy them and remove them from play. Why they're called Destructible Objects honestly. Unless they are part of a very specific scenario objective (like destroy mole man's underground earthquake beam before it destroys New York) I do not use Destructible Objects.

Current Members: @Muskie , Trex, @Just_a_Bill , @lefton4ya , @S1R_ART0R1US , @Tornado @Shiftrex , @Flash_19
Current Contributors:
Grishnakh

Last edited by IAmBatman; June 22nd, 2021 at 11:59 AM.
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Old May 23rd, 2021, 10:51 PM
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Re: Welcome to the Engineers of Valhalla

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Old May 23rd, 2021, 11:48 PM
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Re: Welcome to the Engineers of Valhalla

So wonderful to see this! I wish this project the best of luck and I look forward to seeing what you all are cooking up. Some great contributors already so I know you and your team will do great things TREX!
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Old May 23rd, 2021, 11:57 PM
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Re: Welcome to the Engineers of Valhalla

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Originally Posted by SuperSamyon View Post
So wonderful to see this! I wish this project the best of luck and I look forward to seeing what you all are cooking up. Some great contributors already so I know you and your team will do great things TREX!
Thanks. Feel free to join in on the conversation.
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Old May 24th, 2021, 06:51 AM
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Re: Welcome to the Engineers of Valhalla

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Old May 24th, 2021, 07:36 AM
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Re: Welcome to the Engineers of Valhalla

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Old May 24th, 2021, 04:36 PM
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Re: Welcome to the Engineers of Valhalla

Do one of the members want to set up a thread for our rules and processes as discussed in the brainstorming thread? I don’t want to personally manage all of our thread OPs. I believe both @lefton4ya , and @S1R_ART0R1US outlined them well. If we can get a good combination of our rules in there, that would be great. Also, another thread where designers can propose a design to be discussed and passed off before the team on its journey to be its own blueprint. We can call it the EOV drafting table workshop or something to that extent. Where people can present their ideas with an outline of what piece they want to do, along with what it does, how it works, what file will be used, and what it brings to the table. This can also be the place where the piece can be categorized. Later on we will make a thread that has links to all the different Blueprints. A sort of Books of index but with our blueprints. This can be made when we finish at least one design.
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Old May 24th, 2021, 05:48 PM
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Re: Welcome to the Engineers of Valhalla

I would think we would want all of the discussion/development for a particular piece (or set of pieces) in one thread, and then after it's finalized create a brand-new thread for the Blueprint (so it isn't cluttered by endless pages of development details).


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Old May 25th, 2021, 11:47 AM
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Re: Welcome to the Engineers of Valhalla

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Originally Posted by Just_a_Bill View Post
I would think we would want all of the discussion/development for a particular piece (or set of pieces) in one thread, and then after it's finalized create a brand-new thread for the Blueprint (so it isn't cluttered by endless pages of development details).
That sounds fine. We should make a workshop thread for this. It is nice to be able to find all the seriously fleshed out designs in their own place but whichever way works best without cluttering up things would be a good route. We still need an author to put together our rules and procedures thread as well as a thread we can put and discuss our serious ideas for pieces that will be done. I envision it in three steps. Brainstorming thread, workshop thread, individual blueprint thread for each pieces journey. Whether the blueprint thread is the final place or the design place into final place , I don’t mind, as long as the process works well.
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Old June 9th, 2021, 11:59 PM
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Re: Welcome to the Engineers of Valhalla

I owe this group an outline for a structure that we’ll be happy with and will work on that this week. I also look forward to hosting some map competitions/tournaments/other collaborations with the wider community to show the value of expanding the terrain available to HeroScape players casual and competitive alike.
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Old June 10th, 2021, 02:45 AM
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Re: Welcome to the Engineers of Valhalla

Okay, so I stayed up late and put together this fat wall of text to outline the design and review processes for EoV. Let me know what you think and if there are any gaps in my understanding. A key question is whether advancing stages in the Workshop is vote driven or design lead driven. I think votes aren't needed actually, since votes are taken during the ERB, and rejection there can just move things back into the "Blueprint" thread for refining the design.


The Engineers of Valhalla Charter

The Engineers of Valhalla (EoV) has been created to give HeroScape players a source of new terrain objects for map and scenario creation in the spirit of official HeroScape. The EoV works in two different areas - the Workshop and the Engineering Review Board. The Workshop (and the child Blueprint threads for each design) are where new ideas from EoV members are publicly debated and refined. The Engineering Review Board is where designs from the Workshop (or from any community member!) are assessed against a set of standard criteria to obtain the EoV Stamp of Approval.

The Workshop

The “Engineers of Valhalla Workshop Thread” is used to track active projects. Projects start as an “Idea”, are moved into “Design”, then “Public Feedback”, then “Editing and Playtesting”, “Revision”, then finally “Documentation”. More details on these steps is below. Each project is contained in it’s own “Blueprint of Valhalla” thread, where detailed discussion on each item can be documented, details can be hashed out, and playtesting results recorded.

Idea Stage: This is where we maintain a backlog of potential ideas and designs from members. We don’t want to overwork our volunteers, so we limit the number of projects that move out of this stage. Once a design passes “Documentation”, we vote on the next idea to tackle (using ranked choice, see here https://ballotpedia.org/Ranked-choice_voting_(RCV)) and the design lead (the original creator by default) creates the "Blueprint of Valhalla" thread to kick things off.

Design: In this stage, the assigned design lead lays out their vision and takes the feedback of the group (the eventual voters on EoV approval!) to shape the design (either game mechanics or physically - this is terrain after all!).

Public Feedback: In this stage, we solicit feedback from the wider HeroScape community on the design - is it manufacturable, do people like the powers, are a destructible object’s life/attack/defense appropriate, etc. After sufficient time has passed or notice given, the design will be moved into the next stage by the Workshop crew.

Editing and Playtesting: This is an exciting phase! Maps will be created and games played (virtually, in person, solo, whatever!) with the design. As feedback is received, small changes to the design can also be playtested to inform the design space. Think of this stage as repeating a match with a custom figure but with more life, or without their special attack, or in a different army build. This empowers playtesters to find improvements without restarting the design process. The goal for EoV is at least 5 playtests for a given design.

Revision: This stage of development is the culmination of the playtesting and feedback efforts to finalize the design.

Documentation: This is a collaborative effort in the workshop to put together two key items. The first is a “Terrain Effects Description”. This is a way for the EoV to classify types of designs (see ERB section), and ensure that rules are well understood. The second item is a “Creator’s Guide” describing how to make the terrain object in question (whether it’s 3-D printed, or existing terrain repainted like the tundra glaciers and D&D rock outcrops). Once completed to Workshop crew satisfaction with a majority vote, we move to the next stage - the Engineering Review Board!

The Engineering Review Board

The ERB is where community designs and Blueprints from the Workshop are assessed to see if they are worthy of the EoV Stamp. An individual (either as a community member or as a design lead from the Workshop) may only have one design in review at a time.

Designs from the Workshop that pass "Documentation" automatically go into ERB review, and a majority vote from the ERB can be used to review any submission nominated by the community in the "Engineers of Valhalla - Engineering Review Board" thread. This thread will also contain the status of past and present reviews.

Each design will be evaluated based on its terrain type, outlined by Grishnakh and defined by the EoV below.

1. Terrain Tiles (or just Tiles)
These are the actual tiles that you build the battlefield out of (battlements, grass, rock, sand, water, ice, snow, road, lava, lava field, jungle, shadow, ladders, etc.). Note that these tiles may affect movement, dice rolled, LOS, and other aspects of the game. Submissions here must include a title, height (obstacle height, half hex tile, or full height tile) and a name and description for each associated rule (Ex. Desert Tile - Full-hex height - Shifting Sands, Moving onto a desert tile counts as two spaces.)

2. Objects
These are basically Non-Destructible Objects. They are placed onto the battlefield, but you cannot interact with them, nor destroy them. Some examples would be buildings, trees, large rocks, castle walls, bridges, glaciers, rock outcrops, etc. Submissions here must include a title and height.

3. Interactive Terrain Features (ITFs)
ITFs are terrain that is placed on the battlefield that you can use, or interact with. You can pick up these items and carry them, or use them as weapons. These items are such things as cars, street signs, computer consoles, train cars, equipment "glyphs", etc. Submissions here must include a title, height, hex count, and a name and description for each associated rule (Ex. Train Car - Height 8 - Two Hexes - All Aboard - When a small or medium hero moves adjacent to the Train Car, you may remove their figure from the battlefield and place it on this Army Card. - Conductor- When revealing an order marker on a hero whose figure is located on this Army Card, instead of moving normally you may move this Train Car up to 7 spaces in a straight line and place that figure adjacent to the Train Car.)

4. Destructible Objects (DOs)
These are objects placed on the map that can be destroyed through the course of play. We have two examples associated with the official game, the castle door and the wall section of the ruined warehouse. Submissions here must include a title, life, defense, and a name and description for each associated rule. Height may also be needed depending on the design to determine adjacency.

Approving Designs Through the ERB

A majority vote of ERB members is needed for approval. After approval, the EoV will translate the ruleset into a printable “Terrain Effects Card” with the EoV stamp so that any member of the community can print or share to easily teach the use of the new terrain design. Included on the card will be icons or language indicating that the design is suitable for competitive maps, casual play, or both (% or maybe we let the map designers determine this! Castle walls seldom used in competitive maps for balance reasons, but there are some).

The ERB will utilize the below criteria for each design. Each member will document their response to each question, and provide a final yes or no vote for inclusion.

Are the rules coherently written?
Do the rules interfere in a negative way with gameplay?
Is the design fun or offer interesting choices for all players in the game?
Is the design something you would want on the battlefield?
Does the design bring something new to the table?
Does it visually fit into official HeroScape (ie correct scale, feature quality, theme)?
Has the design been adequately playtested?
Are example maps with build instructions provided?
Is the design manufacturable? Note that all submissions to the ERB should have a .stl file accessible to the public. This ensures accessibility and improves the likelihood that the terrain aesthetically fits into HeroScape (no popsicle stick walls please). You may submit additional manufacturing instructions (papercraft, foam carving, etc) if desired.


Administration of the EoV

If a voting member of the EoV has not responded to direct requests for votes on the forums for a period of 1 month, the remaining members may vote to make their vote an abstain. IF a EoV member has been voted into abstainment on three consecutive design review, another vote may be taken to replace their position.

Last edited by S1R_ART0R1US; June 10th, 2021 at 03:03 AM. Reason: Formatting
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Old June 10th, 2021, 10:56 AM
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Re: Welcome to the Engineers of Valhalla

S1R, this is awesome!!! So much great thought.

I am thinking about how you manage movement from stage to stage within the workshop. Should we have a workshop team that is separate from the ERB? I Think if we had a group that works that end and uses the Ranking system to move stuff forward, the ERB can focus on the final stages and eventual approval or rejection. I really like the ranking system for early work since it not a "good or bad" judgement, but a comparison and feedback tool.

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