MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

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MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Blorf » Wed Aug 20, 2014 9:24 am

The Commander's Handbook is becoming an official part of the Mobile Frame Zero series.
Please consider supporting its development! https://www.patreon.com/hazardcreative


The information below is from the first release of the Commander's Handbook, which is not an official product.
Please check the page above for details and status of the new version's development.


---------

The MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook is a web app optimized for mobile & tablet but will run on any recent web browser. Major components:

Asset Tracking:
Quickly set up companies by defining the number of frames and systems in use. Randomly generate team names with the thematic name generator, sourced from the MFZ rulebook, Errata, the Hangar, and other Sci-Fi influences. Use the deployment guide to easily step through the setup phase. Get automatic PPA and score calculation at the beginning and whenever assets change hands. Multiple undo/redo states forgive input mistakes. Game data is persistently saved (subject to your browser settings) to be called back up at a later time or if the app is closed or navigated away from. A game log is provided which can be used as an archive or basis for battle reporting. Set up and score a battle, skirmish, demo, or freely define game parameters for a custom game.

System Simulation:
Quickly create a loadout and view its provided dicepool. View a graph of the frame's effectiveness data. Simulate die rolling. Switch between two frame loadouts in order to resolve combat and return to the previous roll result. Simulate damage dice. This could be used for all dice rolling in a game, though you will still need markers to place on the table next to the frame to designate defense/spot values.

Rules of Engagement:
A complete rules reference based on the excellent MFZ:Condensed guide is included. Jump to the section you're interested in via index. A variety of quick reference pages are made available for direct navigation.

Loadout Archetypes:
Review archetypes, sectioned by type. Tactical usage information is included with each. Archetypes originally collected from the Mobile Frame Garage and extended (especially in sections with previously few options). Use as a reference when discussing loadouts, or to improve strategic company creation. Create your own custom loadouts for your own use. View an effectiveness graph for any loadout or add it to a company.

Unit Structure:
Create companies and fill them with frames, storing them indefinitely for later use. View effectiveness graph and data for the entire company. Send companies to the Asset Tracker for use in a game. Push individual frames to the system simulator for rolling.

http://hazardcreative.com/mfz-ch/

Save the app to your home screen to enable its full functionality even while offline. (Or do it just so you can have a Chub icon greet you on your home screen. That's a perfectly good reason.)

A somewhat recent browser/device is required. Pretty much all but the oldest should work fine, but don't use IE8 or anything like that. For a lot of reasons.

I'd really like to hear feedback of any kind: bug reports, feature requests, or just how you use it and whether or not you like it. Enjoy!
Last edited by Blorf on Fri Sep 09, 2016 10:55 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Meaker VI » Wed Aug 20, 2014 12:53 pm

You *might* consider revising some of the random-generation words - Worthless Seals, Newport Nation Slackers (though I'll grant, they sound like thugs), Horrible SWAT Team, and Worthless Slag were some of the interesting ones just now. :lol:

"Standing Tanks," "Dragon-slaying," "Nanking," and "Hutching" seem to come up frequently for some reason. Adding in some more typical labels (Greek letters, Frame types, more traditional unit types like hoplite) and weighting some more legit ones (UMFL, Ijad, TTA, Transit Marines, etc.) and some of the typical labels more heavily might help.

Otherwise, I this is awesome! Great work!
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Blorf » Wed Aug 20, 2014 1:16 pm

Thank you!

Meaker VI wrote:You *might* consider revising some of the random-generation words


I'm happy to expand the list with suggestions! I'll consider anything that isn't vulgar or off-color. The words are not weighted at all now so what you see is just probability at work and the effect would lessen with more options in the lists. I doubt I'll write a weighting algorithm. It's probably within my capability but seems like overkill for something that's just fun. I suppose I could go the route of adding some in the list more than once.

"Slackers" is actually a nod to Xenogears, along with "dragon-slaying". Can't go wrong referencing a classic mecha RPG, right? "Horrible" has potential to sound serious. Worthless is probably only just funny.

I like how some of the names are quite good while others are hilarious. This weekend I played as the "rock delivery service".
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby woodwardiocom » Wed Aug 20, 2014 4:14 pm

Meaker VI wrote: "Standing Tanks," "Dragon-slaying," "Nanking," and "Hutching" seem to come up frequently for some reason. Adding in some more typical labels (Greek letters, Frame types, more traditional unit types like hoplite) and weighting some more legit ones (UMFL, Ijad, TTA, Transit Marines, etc.) and some of the typical labels more heavily might help.


"Nanking" is a little tasteless. (It's comparable to using "Auschwitz".)

-JW
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Blorf » Wed Aug 20, 2014 4:32 pm

woodwardiocom wrote:"Nanking" is a little tasteless. (It's comparable to using "Auschwitz".)

-JW

Per the MFZ book, it's the capital of Earth and the SU. (p. 23)
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby woodwardiocom » Wed Aug 20, 2014 4:44 pm

Blorf wrote:
woodwardiocom wrote:"Nanking" is a little tasteless. (It's comparable to using "Auschwitz".)

Per the MFZ book, it's the capital of Earth and the SU. (p. 23)


I stand corrected. I confess to skimming that part.

-JW
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Meaker VI » Wed Aug 20, 2014 7:42 pm

Blorf wrote:Thank you!

Meaker VI wrote:You *might* consider revising some of the random-generation words


I'm happy to expand the list with suggestions! I'll consider anything that isn't vulgar or off-color. The words are not weighted at all now so what you see is just probability at work and the effect would lessen with more options in the lists. I doubt I'll write a weighting algorithm. It's probably within my capability but seems like overkill for something that's just fun. I suppose I could go the route of adding some in the list more than once.


Adding them on the list more than once is probably fine. For this, three or so times for some of the *most* popular, two for average, and once for the stuff that's supposed to be rare & funny would probably work well. Otherwise, I've given some general suggetions, but some others might be:
Common names (Bob's, Joe's, Jimmy's...)
Animals
Tools (hammer, scythe, axe, shovel, screwdriver, buzzsaw...)
Mythic names (Titan-names, names from pantheons, hero names, etc.)
...

If we knew what was already on your list it'd be easier to add to it; I can take guesses based off of the things I've generated but not make a line-item 'you can copy-paste this in' list without knowing what's in there already.
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Red_Robot » Thu Aug 21, 2014 3:28 am

I haven't had a chance to run this through a real shakedown at the table, but from what I've perused this looks like a great reference tool. Thanks for your time and effort on this.
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Mantisking » Thu Aug 21, 2014 7:38 am

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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Blorf » Thu Aug 21, 2014 9:27 am

woodwardiocom wrote:I stand corrected. I confess to skimming that part.

No worries. I definitely see where you're coming from when you don't have that context.

Meaker VI wrote:If we knew what was already on your list it'd be easier to add to it ...

It's there in the Javascript if you're adept at digging; otherwise don't worry about it. I'll sort out any duplicates myself.

Red_Robot wrote:I haven't had a chance to run this through a real shakedown at the table, but from what I've perused this looks like a great reference tool. Thanks for your time and effort on this.

It should be both a reference (far preferable to browsing the PDF on a phone) and a play aid. It's worked well for me so far, which was my goal. If you do bring it to the table, please let me know if you run into any issues.

Mantisking wrote:Blogged.

Thank you!
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Blorf » Fri Aug 22, 2014 12:08 pm

I've got split systems and auto-saving in testing for the system simulator, and I've roughly doubled the words in the name generator. I'm also adding additional items under the Quick Reference in the rules section. If those all test okay I'll push them out next week.

Anyone try this out on an iOS or Windows phone yet?
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Meaker VI » Fri Aug 22, 2014 1:12 pm

Blorf wrote:I've got split systems and auto-saving in testing for the system simulator, and I've roughly doubled the words in the name generator. I'm also adding additional items under the Quick Reference in the rules section. If those all test okay I'll push them out next week.

Anyone try this out on an iOS or Windows phone yet?


I loaded it onto my ipad mini, seemed to work just fine. Do I need to delete and reload to get the updates or does that happen automatically if I'm connected to wifi?
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Scrape » Fri Aug 22, 2014 3:56 pm

I finally delved into the game setup features and this is awesome! I... uh... kind of feel dumb, but how do I download this as an app so I can use it offline? :oops: Can I use it on an Android device?

Anyway, this is a really useful database of info on its own, but that Asset Tracker is really well done.
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Meaker VI » Fri Aug 22, 2014 5:16 pm

Scrape wrote:I finally delved into the game setup features and this is awesome! I... uh... kind of feel dumb, but how do I download this as an app so I can use it offline? :oops: Can I use it on an Android device?

Anyway, this is a really useful database of info on its own, but that Asset Tracker is really well done.


Load it up in your device's internet browser, then click whatever button you use to save pages to your home screen (ios'/safari's is a square with an arrow pointing up). It *should* work offline once you've done that.
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Blorf » Sun Aug 24, 2014 8:51 pm

Meaker VI wrote:I loaded it onto my ipad mini, seemed to work just fine. Do I need to delete and reload to get the updates or does that happen automatically if I'm connected to wifi?

Thanks! Good to know. I got my hands on a 2nd-gen iPod Touch and it mostly worked there; all the functionality was fine but it was missing out on the dynamic SVG graphics (colored frame/flag icons). So I'm not expecting issues with newer devices but please do let me know.

Updates will be automatic—as long as you open it up while online once in a while. The way web apps work, each time you load it up and you're online, your device will check the resource manifest. If that file has changed, it'll download a fresh copy of the app.

Scrape wrote:... how do I download this as an app so I can use it offline? :oops: Can I use it on an Android device?

I have an Android phone so that's a definite yes. How you add to your home screen depends on the device/OS/Browser. For me, in Chrome, hit the menu button next to the location bar and scroll down until you see the "Add to homescreen" option in that list. Doing that is supposed to save the app to your device and enable it to work offline. Works fine for me.

Thank you for the nice comments. Let me know if it helps you or if there's something it could do better.
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Blorf » Mon Aug 25, 2014 1:37 pm

Everything seemed to check out, so I've launched the updates.
  • Expanded Quick Reference material
  • Expanded name generator
  • Split systems in the simulator
  • Persistent loadouts in the simulator (won't reset simply by changing pages)

You have the updated version if the footer on the home page reads "v2014.08.25".
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Meaker VI » Tue Aug 26, 2014 5:15 pm

Blorf wrote:...You have the updated version if the footer on the home page reads "v2014.08.25".


Brilliant version labeling you've got there :D

I tried to reload it on ipad today and it swapped over to safari to do it. I suspect I need to delete the home-page app and reload it from safari to update. When I've tried it I'll let you know.
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Blorf » Tue Aug 26, 2014 7:41 pm

That shouldn't be necessary, but an iOS user would have to confirm. For me on Android all I do is open it. The very first page load is the previous version as it downloads the update in the background, and all subsequent loads are the new version.
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Luke_BMM » Tue Aug 26, 2014 11:24 pm

Yeah, from what I remember, it's largely an iOS thing. Once you save a web app to the home page, it is... reluctant... to update. It's just made for a different goal (preserving the thing you chose to save, rather than giving you the latest version of what you intended to save).

Just blow away the icon and re-add it and it works great.
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Re: MFZ:RA Commander's Handbook

Postby Blorf » Wed Aug 27, 2014 8:43 am

Luke_BMM wrote:Yeah, from what I remember, it's largely an iOS thing. Once you save a web app to the home page, it is... reluctant... to update.


Thanks for letting me know. I'll be sure to post any updates to this thread and not assume you all get them automatically. I've got a few bug fixes that I'll be pushing out soon.
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