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Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler
http://ulthuan.net/forum/viewtopic.php?f=76&t=37809
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Author:  Curu Olannon [ Wed Dec 28, 2011 3:26 pm ]
Post subject:  Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

Stickied. ~Eldacar

On these forums you will find a great many battle reports that are thoroughly made, with diagrams and lots of detail. Naturally, this makes for way better reports which in turn allows the author to get better feedback.

Many people have also said that they do not fully grasp how Battle Chronicler works. Because of this I decided to make a guide so we can all improve the level of the battle reports.

:: Getting Started ::

Battle Chronicler is essentially a tailor-made battle reports program for games like Warhammer. It's based on the .NET framework from Microsoft, and I believe it only works with Windows computers. The download link can be found here: click

Once you've downloaded Battle Chronicler, you can install it and start it. The following window should appear:

Image

Congratulations - you're now ready to start using the program :)

:: Battle Chronicler Basics - Setting Up Armies and Game Info ::

Once you've opened the program, click 'File' in the upper-left corner and select 'New'. The following window should appear:

Image

Let's discuss this picture for a second. The default values here are as follows: the game lasts for 6 turns, the table is 6x4 feet, Army A starts on the North side and gets first turn. The table colour is green, Army A is red, Army B is blue. Please note that all these values can easily be changed and often times, we forget to do so. Because of this I advice that you take a couple of seconds now to make sure everything is correct.

After you're done with the basics of the game, it's time to define the armies. Both Army A and Army B has an option called 'Define', next to 'Import'. Now, if this is your first time using Battle Chronicler, you have nothing to import! Let's take a look at what happens when you select 'Define':

Image

The main thing you need to understand here is how an army is created. The 'New' button in the lower-left corner creates a new unit. You can then fill out the unit's size, name, base size etc. When you're done, I suggest you click 'Create Template'. This allows you to import this file later on, so that you don't need to define the army every single time you're making a battle report. Handy indeed!

Once you've done this for both armies, you're ready to start making the actual diagrams which you'll be (hopefully) posting online to complement your notes.

:: Using Battle Chronicler To Simulate Deployment and Game Turns ::

Having completed the armies and filled out the game information, you're ready to click 'ok'. The following screen appears:

Image

Now, you select the terrain you want from the menu on your left. When you're done, do NOT start placing the armies. Do you notice the bar beneath the white 'Terrain' header? This bar controls which part of the game you're in (e.g. terrain, deployment etc). As such, simply hit the arrow to the right of this bar when you're done with terrain and you'll get to deployment.

When you're done with deployment, it should look roughly like this (but the word 'Locked' should not appear: this word appears when you go back so that any changes won't affect future turns):

Image

Now if you've gotten this far, the rest is a piece of cake: hit the right arrow on the bar to advance to the next game turn. Moving units is easy and self-explanatory, simply drag'n'drop them to where they moved etc. Also note that you have a plethora of options on your left-hand side: such as decreasing the unit's size, marking a unit as charging, placing a blast marker etc.

:: Closing Notes ::

I advice that you save the game in battle chronicler regularly (so that you don't lose any work if you accidentally lose power/exit the program or whatever). This can be done by clicking 'File' and 'Save'. Now, to export all these diagrams, simply hit 'File' and 'Export to Image File'. I find that in order to get diagrams that convey enough information while not being too large for most laptops, 900x600 pixels is a good size. To get the images on this forum, you need to host them online. Personally, I use photobucket. It does what it's supposed to but there might be better ones out there. For me, photobucket provides everything I need.

Author:  Ptolemy [ Wed Dec 28, 2011 8:31 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

A super useful post!

Thanks Curu!

Author:  Malossar [ Wed Dec 28, 2011 9:37 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

After all my whining and complaining about not getting battle chronicler to work, then spending an entire weekend with it and finally getting a barely satisfactory report up.... you THEN choose to write a guide!!!! ;)

Hehe joking aside its a great wrrite up, BC makes a report worth reading!


Quick Question:

I've been having problems by accidentally advancing the Turn to far foward, thus leaving my units in place and not advancing... any idea on how to solve this? Or is there a way to shrink or minimize the Turn Scroller so i don't keep clicking it? >.<


thanks again!

Author:  Curu Olannon [ Thu Dec 29, 2011 12:44 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

Indeed lordcal, you were one of the reasons I decided to put this up ;) I did decide to write it before you had posted your first report. However, due to exams I didn't have any motivation to do stuff like that. Sorry! You may have noticed an increase in my activity since Dec 19th ;)

As for your accidental hitting of 'next' - there's an easy fix here: the menu has a section called 'Game'. Here, you have the option to unlock the current turn as well as resetting this (and sub-sequent) turns. As such, if you accidentally hit next, just go back, click 'Game' and then de-select 'Lock Turn'.

Oh by the way if there's anything you think should be added (e.g. FAQ section), let me know! I've become so used to Battle Chronicler that I no longer remember what I struggled with when I first started, and as such it's hard for me to make sure I've covered all the bases alone. So, please fill me in :)

Author:  Elessehta of Yvresse [ Thu Dec 29, 2011 3:38 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

I love that I can import my Army Builder lists into this, it'll do points and all!

Author:  Malossar [ Thu Dec 29, 2011 4:44 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

Could we come up with a template to represent certain events happening, sorta like a general guide to markers on the field.

Ok that was a really poor way of saying lets establish certain marker guidelines that happen in the game.

Such as explosion template represents xyz... same with the grey arrow etc.

Anyone found a good way to show vanguard moves?

Author:  Elessehta of Yvresse [ Thu Dec 29, 2011 6:56 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

I'm going to show it in the deployment with a grey arrow from now I on. I was playing around with my last report earlier this week.

Author:  Brewmaster_D [ Thu Dec 29, 2011 7:32 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

One thing that really deserves to be mentioned is that the "Game Details" can be edited after the initial list generation. So for example, during deployment if you realize you forgot to include a unit in your list, you can simply go to Edit --> Game Details, and after you add it, that unit will become available to you immediately.

Saves the whole "I forgot to include X unit" syndrome.

D

Author:  Curu Olannon [ Thu Dec 29, 2011 10:07 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

The army builder and editing game details on a later stage are good points! Looks like a FAQ is a good idea.

As for establishing certain general principles, here's what I usually do:
- on multi-wound models, each skull is 1 wound. On units I don't bother too much, for example when 20 Spears die I don't put 20 skulls there
- a big skull always means a unit died
- severe damage from shooting/magic is modelled by explosions
- grey arrow displays unusual stuff, e.g. vanguard move, direction of vortex etc

Author:  Elessehta of Yvresse [ Thu Dec 29, 2011 10:25 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

How is the best way to indicate shooting?

Author:  Tethlis [ Thu Dec 29, 2011 7:26 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

Tiralya wrote:
How is the best way to indicate shooting?


I use the small explosion markers (or sometimes the big explosion marker) to indicate how many wounds a unit suffered from shooting or magic. If a unit is standing alone and not in combat, it's pretty clear that the unit took damage from ranged attacks. I use the round fiery blast marker to represent magical vortexes, as well as miscast-related explosions that happen to my own army. Like Curu, I also use the Big Skull to indicate when a unit has died.

Author:  Curu Olannon [ Fri Dec 30, 2011 1:50 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

I use the blue marker for an augment, the red marker for a hex and the black marker for a miscast. If the miscast is a template, I usually add an explosion as well.

Author:  KarsaOrlong [ Mon Jan 02, 2012 4:19 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

Curu Olannon wrote:
I use the blue marker for an augment, the red marker for a hex and the black marker for a miscast. If the miscast is a template, I usually add an explosion as well.


This is kind of cool. If we all followed similar modus operandi on our reports it would increase comprehension of what happened each turn. Thanks again for a great intro tutorial Curu. I had no idea where to start when I first opened BC.

Author:  Curu Olannon [ Mon Jan 02, 2012 9:47 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

I agree that having a common usage of symbols would increase readability. Is there anything important we haven't covered so far?

Author:  Jimmy [ Mon Jan 02, 2012 11:34 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

Nice work Curu, great guide, the only thing I would touch on is if an error is made how to go back, unlock the turn and change it or alternatively hit edit and reset the unit.

=D>

Author:  Curu Olannon [ Tue Jan 03, 2012 3:17 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

Yeah I will get around to an FAQ at the end of the post. For now, I am lost in list analysis as all my opponent's lists have now been posted ;)

Author:  ehegert [ Tue Jan 03, 2012 8:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

Downloaded and played with it yesterday based on your post. One question I had was what is the best way to show characters in a unit? I had just made single model units that I moved along on top of the unit they were in.

Author:  Curu Olannon [ Tue Jan 03, 2012 9:15 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

ehegert wrote:
Downloaded and played with it yesterday based on your post. One question I had was what is the best way to show characters in a unit? I had just made single model units that I moved along on top of the unit they were in.


Yes, this is how I do it as well. Will include this in the FAQ!

Author:  Mentheus of Caledor [ Thu Jan 05, 2012 3:43 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

Hey, thanks a heap for this guide Curu, I just did my first BR with battle chronicler, and this helped a whole lot.

Thanks!!

Author:  Curu Olannon [ Thu Jan 05, 2012 11:53 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

Cython wrote:
Hey, thanks a heap for this guide Curu, I just did my first BR with battle chronicler, and this helped a whole lot.

Thanks!!


No worries :) Did you have any questions which you felt the original post in this topic didn't answer? I'd like to know for the FAQ

Author:  Mentheus of Caledor [ Thu Jan 05, 2012 12:05 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

No, nothing stuck out at me. Everything went pretty smoothly once I got the gist of stuff. So no, sorry, I have no contribution for your FAQ :(

All of the questions I would have had were already asked, so basically everything that had already been asked covered everything I was trying to do...

Author:  HERO [ Mon Jan 09, 2012 12:59 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

I really like this tool too.... too bad it takes me forever to do :(

Author:  Elessehta of Yvresse [ Mon Jan 09, 2012 10:37 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

My last report took as long to do up as it did to play, and I cheated by importing the lists from army builder ^_^'

Author:  Silvarus [ Wed Jan 11, 2012 1:47 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

awsome il get to making my army blog! =]

Author:  AsurPrince [ Thu Jan 26, 2012 5:49 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

Tiralya wrote:
I love that I can import my Army Builder lists into this, it'll do points and all!

What army builder program do you use???

Author:  Elessehta of Yvresse [ Thu Jan 26, 2012 8:58 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

The Lone Wolf Development one.

Author:  Bolt Thrower [ Sat Feb 04, 2012 4:45 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

Battle Chronicler users, I'm struggling making a unit appear as skirmishers. When I click the formation view icons in the top right it shows the individual models of every unit which is not what I want. Any suggestions so I can make 2 units of chameleon skinks? Thanks!

Author:  The Silly Dragon [ Sat Feb 11, 2012 3:36 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

I got this and things just aren't working for me. Need help!

The only thing that isn't right is that the windows for making your army cuts off before the last part (so i cannot press ok as it is unreachable). It wont scroll and have tried minimizing and maximizing doing diferent resolutions for TV and different pictures. Is there anyway for me to fix this as it makes it unuseable.

Basically take Curu's first post here, his got the picture up for defining your army and cut off the bottom part where it says Game Played as this is the part that i cannot get to. So no Ok button to press when finished...which bloody annoyed me! :x

Author:  Bolt Thrower [ Sat Feb 11, 2012 8:33 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

The Silly Dragon wrote:
I got this and things just aren't working for me. Need help!

The only thing that isn't right is that the windows for making your army cuts off before the last part (so i cannot press ok as it is unreachable). It wont scroll and have tried minimizing and maximizing doing diferent resolutions for TV and different pictures. Is there anyway for me to fix this as it makes it unuseable.

Basically take Curu's first post here, his got the picture up for defining your army and cut off the bottom part where it says Game Played as this is the part that i cannot get to. So no Ok button to press when finished...which bloody annoyed me! :x

Have you tried using the Tab key to select it and then just hit enter? It would require an educated guess as to where the tab selection is, but might be possible. Judging from the pic in this thread of that window, once the "Define" button is highlighted as selected using the tab key, it might take 4 more tabs to highlight the "OK" button. 1 for Import, 2 for Date Played, 3 for Location and 4 for OK.

Author:  The Silly Dragon [ Sun Feb 12, 2012 9:24 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Olannon's Guide to Battle Chronicler

I forgot about the tab function.

It worked, alittle annoying as i have to remember the amount of clicks to get certain buttons but if i write them down should be ok. Thanks alot Bolt Thrower! :D

I should be having a couple of games versus Vampire Counts today (weather permitting its really hard snowing here) so will try to write up a battle report tonight. Wish me luck!

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