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Posted on Jul 22, 2009 in Electronic Games

Making History II – Game Developer’s Notes

By Armchair General

Making History II features individual unit properties and a new operating system for supplies.

The expectation is that the players will enjoy the process of building up and improving their units and army group’s effectiveness over the course of the game.

Making History II: The War of the World, developed by Muzzy Lane Software in partnership with economic historian Niall Ferguson, is a sequel to Making History: The Calm & the Storm. Both are turn-based grand strategy PC games about the Second World War, although the new edition features a broader timeline than the first did. Making History II is scheduled for a Fall 2009 release. In this "Developer’s Diary," Muzzy Lane tells gamers what updates and new features they can expect.

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The military gameplay in Making History II: The War of the World will be dramatically different from the first Making History. With MHII we’ve moved away from units being more like traditional board game pieces to a system where each unit has its own set of properties. All military forces can now take damage, be reinforced or repaired. By giving units the ability to survive a battle despite being hit, it makes a lot more sense to include other standard unit properties like experience and morale. Units gain experience by engaging in combat. Morale is affected by battlefield results and possibly domestic conditions.

The military forces will still be organized by army groups, naval groups and air groups as container sets for the individual units. The units themselves represent an abstraction of a division, squadron or ship. At the group level we’ve added a command bonus that acts as a leadership modifier for all units under that group. At this point we do not plan to assign historical figures as in generals and admirals to specific groups although this will be possible for the player since all groups and units can have a custom name. All the new unit properties have a tactical as well as game management impact, and they will ultimately modify the way MHII is played. The expectation is that the players will enjoy the process of building up and improving their units and army group’s effectiveness over the course of the game.

We’ve also changed the way the military supply operates. Arms are required to maintain your military’s combat strength. Regions will now have a supply rate based on logistical restraints. This limits the amount of Arms a unit can receive when located in a specific region. While the supply rate will improve over time, blitzkrieg-like invasions that probe deep into an enemy’s territory should experience negative combat affects due to extended lines of supply.

Making History II is played on a broader timeline and offers a number of new military units for nations to build. Special units like Engineers, Mountain Infantry and Paratroopers, plus vintage forces like Bi-planes, Horse Artillery and Zeppelins are all planned for the release. In addition to all the military technologies, tactical oriented projects will be available by researching through Military Academies. Other distinctions will be tied to recruitment manpower. Infantry made in a colonial region might be owned by a colonial master but the soldiers will retain a local identity.

Many of these new features, in addition to others not mentioned here, will increase the level of detail for the MHII player who enjoys more depth. The tactical potential is notably expanded with the addition of reinforcements and supply logistics – retreating may become a reasonable option. For those who prefer simplicity, we feel very strongly about designing a UI that does not overwhelm the player with too much information all at once. When taken as a whole and combined with the economic game, MHII should be a more challenging and engaging experience for gamers.

1 Comment

  1. what is the operating sytem on making history 2, also will making history 2 be like making history 1 and each nation will have a color and in the pictures u have in this column umm what ever it is the cities dont look all that good and there is no coolo which i like

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