The need to conceal information in some way has come up for map development. I'm starting this thread to brainstorm ideas for how to do so. Ease of coding is a priority for this, though being complete and flexible are also desirable.
Here are some ideas from other places around the forum, and a couple I thought of
-protect savegames with a password. In order to open a save game as a certain nation, you must enter a password
-create XML option to disable history mode during gameplay
-cause saves to show up in history mode. Currently, loading a game appears but the act of saving does not
What are the issues with the above? What other ways are out there?
Wouldn't that allow the host of a game to view information that is supposed to be limited to his opponent? He could save the game, open another tripleA window, start the game locally, and view his opponents' secrets.
I feel like it would be best to encrypt savegames and require a password to unlock your turn. That way we wouldn't be throwing PBEM/PBF out the window. Only simple encryption methods would be necessary. If you're a world class hacker, then you'd get in anyways
"The aggressive spirit, the offensive, is the chief thing everywhere in war, and the air is no exception." - Manfred von Richthofen
Would be more like a "bot-only" option (because the hoster would know stuff, otherwise), but I think it may work, because currently TA has a good number of bots (tx to Frankie). Of course, a more refined way would be having some specific place to save and store the info (they should be very light, so you could store basically infinite), working for live, forum and mail games alike.
I don't think we would have to throw PBEM/PBF out the window. I'm thinking of ways to improve those, having those game be more similar to lobby games perhaps could be really good. Encrypting the game files does not seem very appealing. It is very nice to be able to open maps offline to study the board positions, so I would not want to take that away. IMO for now that is more important even than enabling PBEM/PBF if it comes down to choosing between the two.
Part of the idea at least for Conquest is the games will be faster, PBEM/PBF will be much less useful.
For conquest, I think found a decent solution. Unplaced units can be given by trigger, and the condition for the trigger could destroying X amount of TUV that turn. This would allow us to give a random unit (which could be similar to a card) to a player on the condition that they killed at least 1 enemy unit. As far as I can tell, an unplaced unit can only be found out by looking in the history mode, or opening that players turn. So, if we can put some sort of restriction on those, we can start hiding information.
So before we even code new features to use with this, I think the following needs to be done
-change history mode, possibly totally disable. Option to re-enable if the game is won?
-change edit mode, possibly totally disable (because your opponent can't check the history for edits)
-something must be done to handle savegames. What solutions would work/ would not work for the various ways to play? (Forum, Email, and hotseat. Are there any others?)
For savegames, we must prevent one player from opening the view from another players point of view. lafayette has pointed out that is desirable to be able to open the game to study board positions. Perhaps we can create two types of save games. One is just a view of the board, with all publicly available information. The other is a true savegame, this version would be password protected. Perhaps in order to create a true savegame, both players must agree to its creation?