Unity of Command is an innovative and refreshing operational-level wargame that covers the entire 1942/43 Stalingrad Campaign on the Eastern Front.
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Very Positive (503) - 80% of the 503 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date:
Oct 17, 2012
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Buy Unity of Command Trilogy Bundle

Includes 3 items: Unity of Command - Black Turn DLC, Unity of Command - Red Turn DLC, Unity of Command: Stalingrad Campaign

 

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December 13, 2018

UoC2 Developer Diary 19 – Details, Details



By now, a lot of the people following this diary must be thinking “so anyway, this game is practically done, right?”

I guess it depends on your definition of “practically”. It is certainly playable, there are very few features that are outright missing, and the scenario count is up to around 20-ish. On the other hand, we’re trying to make a game that’s better than merely playable, so expect more diaries from me until we’re judged release-ready.

As an example, the deformed Union Jack in the picture is not an attempt at cheeky political commentary, it’s actually what we need to do to make the flag readable in its wavy shape. I was not even aware of this process until Goran, our lead artist, showed me how we do this for almost every flag in the game.

It’s a good illustration, I think, of the type of detailing work that we’re doing right now. We take the game to be mechanically solid, and we’re making rule changes only exceptionally. Our current focus is on the (many!) details that make up the flow and feeling of the game. Eventually, the plan is for the final round of scenario and balancing work to be done on a near-finalized, comfortably playable version of the game.

River-hugging Boundaries
Here’s another one of our cheerfully over-engineered™ features: we’ve made all the in-game boundaries (front line, movement range, etc.) tightly follow river banks. The readability improvements from this are indisputable, as you can see in the screenshot below, of an early Allied push to the Rhine.

It gets even better in difficult terrain such as in the Ardennes, which were a real concern to me. A lot of the action happens on that least-readable part of the map, and we were actively looking for solutions. I feel this not only does the trick, but also looks pretty attractive.



(click image for full size)

From a technical standpoint, you can see that the basic idea already existed in Developer Diary 8. Even back then, the front line lies on the near bank, and the movement boundary is set on the far bank. This worked without a hitch in practice, and even the first implementation pass was not so bad.

That was when we hit the edge cases though: river confluences, boundaries hopping from river to river, poorly drawn rivers which confused the algorithm… you know, the works. We ended up throwing an insane amount of computational geometry at this (cheers @Ante) and let no one in the comments tell me it was not worth it. Seriously, I double dare you and all that.

HQ Changes
Neatly contradicting my own words from the top of this very post, we made some important changes to the HQ mechanics. Previously, HQ areas were not allowed to overlap, and we had a map view that showed all HQ areas together. This looked pretty good – similar to a military situation map, and I still think it’s not a bad idea in simulation terms.

Unfortunately, it turned out it was impossible to find an HQ movement mechanic that does not play hell with that neat picture. The scenario setups were great, but the playthrough that followed not so much. Our solution was to remove the no-overlap rule, while at the same time shrinking HQ range. In practice, this removes most of the “unrealistic” overlap and is an OK, though not perfect, solution.

While we were at it, we solved another issue that kept popping up: it was not easy for us to see which units belong to which HQ. To this end, we are now showing subordinated units and the HQ range when it’s selected (screen below). Out-of-range units are shown in red, and actually now as I’m writing this, that red icon looks a bit more screaming than it should be.

Units being out of HQ range are nowhere near as bad as being out of supply. Yes, they can’t get reinforcements, and their HQ can’t help them with e.g. entrenchment, but mostly they can fight alright. Overall, I feel this new system works and feels better than any sort of tedious OOB-accounting we might have put in its place.

Odds and Ends
I haven’t forgotten the people who hate squinting at tiny fonts, and so the UI scaling shakedown continues. Parts of the UI where this works look glorious when zoomed-in, the ones that don’t (yet) keep shrieking at me menacingly. The work continues!

We’ve added core localization support, with an eye to supporting not only our own content, but also community scenarios and mods. A few tests were run to confirm that, at least, cyrillic and chinese scripts work and don’t break anything major.

We’ve added and/or tweaked many of the in-game icons in our perpetual quest for readability: in the main screenshot you can see the new objective markers (red), and an improved version of the road-blocking stragglers icon. Every little thing makes a difference.

The team is quietly winding things down for the year. There’s a good feeling all around, especially when we consider the progress we’ve made – as can be seen simply by comparison our December ’17 dev diary.

We wish you all a Merry Christmas, and to ourselves, a release date in the coming year 😄

Best, Tomislav 🙏

10 comments Read more

December 13, 2018

Unity of Command 2 Development Diaries

Hello and welcome to Unity of Command 2 Development Diaries!

We’ll be posting a brand new Development Diary #19 shortly, here on Steam’s announcement section, but here’s a short recap in case you missed any of the previous entries.

While it’s true that Unity of Command 2 hasn’t been properly announced it’s no secret that we’ve been working on the game and, in fact, have been at it for quite some time.

The sequel is on its way, we confirmed that much in this Anniversary post in the Blogs section on Unity of Command web quite some time ago.

The very first Development Diary (‘No More Wipeouts!') was published just a couple of months later and can give you an idea of what to expect from the upgraded mechanics, while the second diary entry (Objectives) weights the pros and cons of timed objectives in the game (spoiler alert: it looks like we’re keeping those).

Excellent reads, both of those, but Tom, our Project Lead on UoC2, has set a high standard for himself and decided to start from scratch. “I’m restarting the dev diary series” announced Tom and then proceeded to explain the envisioned changes to the losses management system in both a scenario and a campaign. The third diary entry (Are You Experienced?) also hints at tweaks to the familiar veterancy levels and mentions upgrades between scenarios for the very first time!

A brand new feature, headquarters, was announced and explained in Report to HQ, ASAP!, while The Supply Network and Move it, Soldier! shed some light on the refining process of the defining mechanics in Unity of Command; planned changes to supply logistics, fighting and maneuvering are detailed in Dev Diaries 5 to 7.

Campaign drops the bomb with the first ever Art Preview, but the excitement doesn’t stop there as Tom announces the switch to a brand new in-house 3D engine built on Python while staying recognizably Unity of Command. Developer Diary 9 (Map Making) takes the next logical step and explains the process of map building, apparently a tedious task with a very limited room for automation. We use the word ‘shader’ for the very first time, marking a new chapter in the development of Development Diaries.

Performance diary answers the age-old question - will this game run on my age-old PC? - with a resounding ‘probably yes!’ but please don’t tell that to anyone just yet as we’re still tweaking things in hopes of making the game look even better and running on lower spec hardware. Oh, and if you read the comments section in Dev Diary 10, there’s also a brief mention of planned additional content for the game which is a politically correct way of saying yes, there will be DLCs!

A rather novel game development technique was introduced last year in the Summer of Systems: the team decided to ditch any low-level system that wasn’t implemented by the end of August. Good news: team crunched and ended up implementing most of the planned systems. Steam release is casually confirmed.

An open invitation to modders was sent out in So over with Under-The-Hood, a Dev Diary 13 that also publishes a new screenshot, describing an interesting problem: the units were drowning in the terrain, which is kind of a point of military uniforms, but apparently not really good for gameplay. The solution? You’ll have to read to blog, unfortunately.

Alternatively, you could start browsing through Dev Diaries 14 -17 that namely discuss new features like The Fog of War, Intel system or the weather modifiers, but truth be told are just excuses for the team to show off a bunch of new visuals: while the subtleties of screen space ambient occlusion are hard to notice, the Unity of Command 2 is starting to look just plain gorgeous! Case in point - this Trick or Treat screenshot.

TL; DR
Not bad for a game that hasn’t even been properly announced, eh? If you read between the lines, we’ve spilled the beans on pretty much all major improvements to gameplay, explained the reasoning behind new features and even gave a hint to the release date - check out the brand new Dev Diary #19.

The work continues!
1 comments Read more

Reviews

“Wargames this fresh and friendly tend to inspire deep loyalty.”
86/100 – PC Gamer

“A traditional hex-based wargame of unusual elegance, one that is perfect for genre newcomers but equally satisfying to veterans."
9/10 – PC Power Play

“Accessible yet deep, attractive and with an AI which teaches you the core of the game by beating you around the head.”
Rock Paper Shotgun

About This Game

Unity of Command is an innovative and refreshing operational-level wargame that covers the entire 1942/43 Stalingrad Campaign on the Eastern Front. Playable from both the Axis and Soviet perspective, it strives to recreate the strategy, the forces involved and the general tension of that crucial period in World War II.

Experience the highly fluid, enormously large battles of maneuver in a turn-based strategy setting. Take command in this mobile, back-and-forth sort of war where logistics and poor weather are often the decider, and defeat and victory are sometimes just a mile, or a day, apart.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    Minimum:
    • OS:Windows XP
    • Processor:1.6 GHz
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive:150 MB HD space
    Recommended:
    • Processor:2.0 GHz
    • Memory:2 GB RAM
    Minimum:
    • OS:10.6
    • Processor:1.6 GHz
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive:150 MB HD space
    Recommended:
    • Processor:2.0 GHz
    • Memory:2 GB RAM
    • Processor:1.6 GHz
    • Memory:1 GB RAM
    • Hard Drive:150 MB HD space

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