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Root of Place.
(Figure root of People, and Equipment root of Thing, <sings> "so we unpacked... our adjectives")
Okay, a TFT Hex is given as one and a third meters across, side to side (sts).
That's 130cm or a tad over 4.265 feet.
As can be seen with a tape measure, this is well under the span of an average humans outstretched arms, much less prone body.
Considered as height, this is around armpit level or about the top of the strike zone.
I reach 5ft from wrist to wrist, with an additional 6.5in per hand, meaning the palms of my outstretched hands can reach from vertice to vertice.
A standard stride for me is a bit over two feet per step.
That's basically 2 steps from Hex-center to Hex-center with the first step landing right on the hex-side.
I also find that I can take a step from one Hex-center toward another and easily reach its center with my outstretched hand, (about 5ft, think a fencing thrust.)
When I run, I cover right around 4.3 feet per stride.
This is one step from Hex-center to Hex-center at full stride.
The average Thoroughbred is about 8.5ft long, 1450lbs, and can sustain over 40mph speeds with strides upwards of 28ft.
At 4.3ft per hex this sets an average Thoroughbred at two full hexes in length, covering 6.5 hexes per stride and completing two strides per second or ten per melee round.
So there's that.
Probably the main advantage is that 6 of them surround a center one, and that sets a one to one correspondence with the 6 sided dice, allowing simple randomization for all sorts of situations.
Anything, from which hex a long fly ball lands in, to which direction the lost party is really moving, can be objectively decided with a die roll.
A close second in how much easier it is to get a spherical grid with mega- hexes.
Stuff from Explosions to Orbits get a much better "common visual" with the mega-hex method I think.
Then there are all sorts of little advantages.
Things like the average separation between trees is a little less than 4.5ft, so hexes make a pretty good forest grid.
You can even play Life with hexes as cells and make large areas "grow" or change over time via objective rules.
I find it hard to "think" in hexes when it comes to area.
Does anyone BUT gamers make regular use of hex-paper?
Even among us gamers, do we have any standard for how we use the stuff?
I have observed the chess equivalent of ignoring the white square to the right board orientation, with hexes being placed any which way, north passing through the Hex sts this encounter, then from vertices to vertices the next.
If one is going from arena fight to arena fight, (and I'm not knocking Death Test) then Hex orientation isn't that important.
But at some scales it becomes advantageous to set a standard.
Here's an example of what I mean by advantage.
I'm assuming using a standard sized 8 1/2 x 11 inch page.
Funny sized pages, like legal, cause a lot of headaches for a few extra Hexes IMO.
I'm assuming using a hex that is one real-world inch sts.
I find this size okay for reaching and moving chits, also I draw my hexes on quarter inch graph paper which allows some advantages I'll mention further on down.
Using the standard orientation, like an open notebook page ready to write on, the top of the page is north and the bottom south.
I use a grid 10 Hexes n/s by 8 Hexes e/w.
I align the grid such that the Hexes on the left and right edges of the page are half-Hexes.
This makes every other column on the top and bottom edges of the page end in half-Hexes, I put a column without half-Hexes in the middle position, which places a single Hex-center more or less in the middle of this Battle Map.
As this config is geomorphic I could stop there, but I've got one more layer to add.
Battle Maps are tiled in the same manner as Hexes.
North to South they just stack up into columns, but I stagger two Battle Maps on the left and right sides, overlapping 5 hexes for each Battle Map to get a mega-Battle Map that I use just like a mega-Hex.
So this lets me describe a Baseball field in Battle Maps (7BM n/s x 8BM e/w).
That's minimum for an old school pro field.
The Track and Field track I use for an example is (5BM n/s x 17BM e/w)
A Football field fits in (9BM n/s x 5BM e/w)
Knowing how the field is laid out relative to north, a GM could lay out the entire field if they had the room and want.
Laying the BMs out like hexes lets me keep larger scale maps on the same Hexes I use for BMs.
In more cramped conditions, this allows me to draw an "overview" map for the players on a few BMs and then only have to lay out the BMs that are "involved" in the action, be it an arrow shot, or a home run, etc. al la how Car Wars lays out the maps in front and picks up the maps behind for a running battle.
As described so far, a given field or track or pitch or what-have-you would have to "snap" to the north orientation I describe to "fit".
That's what the grid is for.
I solved the problem of Hex paper acquisition by drawing my Hexes on quarter inch graph paper.
There are a lot of advantages to this.
The simplest is that quarter inch graph is commonly available, ergo it's used for a ton of different applications.
By drawing my hexes on common graph, I can use all those programs, magazines, and books that use measured drawings.
This saves a ton of time in creating maps, as I can translate what's out there in the public domain straight into Hexes.
I can even set buildings in alignments that don't require the walls to line-up with the sides of the grid I'm using for the conveniences of measurement, al la Squad Leader, or using a transparency type hex-grid to lay over google maps at specific altitudes.
(Yes, I got around to the math. I also have some things to say on breaking things. Thanks for the inspiration. You know who you are Mr. B.)
Using the alignment described above where two sides of the Hex are always opposite north to south, and two vertices are always opposite east to west, I draw the two north/south sides as parallel lines 3 squares in length, separated by 4 squares.
I complete the Hex by drawing an angle from the end-point of each n/s line to the mid-point of...
Lord this stuff is hard to put into words.
Does it help if I say the Hex I'm describing is 5 squares wide from vertices to vertices?
It should be obvious if you actually break out the graph paper and draw a few lines.
The reason I'm jazzed about this particular config is that this one can be expanded decimally and it never yealds a worse fraction than a half a hex, and it's equal in area to a 4 x 4 square, i.e. I can figure the area of the map linearly, even if it's in hexes.
Then there's the little things, like I can draw one of these hexes on a chess board (geomorphicly by the by) and I can represent slightly over a square foot (13" x 13") per square, significant if were asking just where in the hex did Frodo drop the ring...
I'll stop here and see what confusion this creates.
Part of my purpose here is to argue a belief of mine that I can sum up with the following sentence.
The point of a rule is to keep all the members of the Story on the "same sheet of music" as far as the shared visual goes.
Or something to that effect, anyway we can't have foot-races without agreeing on how we're measuring the space.
This is how I do it, if I'm missing something, or there's a better way then that's why I'm here.
Tell me now or else what follows will be in the rough notation I've described above.
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- RE: (TFT) Hexes
- From: David Michael Grouchy II <firstname.lastname@example.org>