Saturday, August 24, 2013

Alpha Strike Card Maker Update!

Version 1.2, download here.
Changes, that I can remember:

  • Completely rewrote all card drawing code
  • Added embedded fonts, so there is just 1 EXE to deal with now
  • Updated the cards to provide a bit more room for the move attribute, there simply wasn't enough room for something like 16"/12"j/4"u in the space provided
  • Redid the code that draws the outlined text, its much sharper now
  • Changed sizes of various strings.  Some, like the TP/SZ/MV/Skill are no longer bold and may be too hard to read.  Let me know if that is the case.  It just gave more room when not using bold.
  • Added support for a color card with a white box area, so you can use TRO graphics without having to edit them in paint first (it has no effect with B&W cards)
  • Embedded the default test file, and added the 9 additional cards from the ad-hoc card pack.  However some stats may be off, please let me know if they are as I don't have it :(
  • I added a listbox on the right, this listbox uses cached data I got from the canon on 07 AUG.  I'll update it periodically.  Clicking on units in this list immediately creates the card for them.  They are alphabetical.  *ALL* of the data in this list is 100% canon as of 7 AUG, I made zero changes to any of the data itself, so it is *QUICK STRIKE* data, as the site has not yet been updated with the Alpha Strike data.
  • There is now support for some larger craft, that have Front/Side/Rear attacks.  Basically you can have a "10/10/10" for each SR/MR/LR and it'll fit.  I had data for a few dropships and LAMs in there when tinkering with a Wolf's Dragoons quick strike card pack.  I'll attach some images at the end.
  • I made the circles for armor/structure fit better.  As wacky as it sounds, some units get *REALLY* small circles, but keeping the circles the same height and making them ovals makes them far more usable.  See for yourself with 30 armor or so.
  • Still a few minor things that need fixing, keep an eye out and let me know what you find
  • All sorts of other things
Some pics of Wolf's Dragoons 3025 units.  I made all 1216 of them, but wasn't sure people really wanted them.  If folks do, comment enough and I'll throw a PDF (200 pages, with 6 cards per page) together with all of them in it.  Unindexed because, well, its time consuming

And lastly on this topic.  Though I love the cards, they are beautiful and whoever designed them should get a cookie, I don't think they are so easy to use in game.  Maybe, but they seem a bit hard to read.  I may try to go game tomorrow somewhere, dunno if I can find anything in the area, but if I do I'll take my cards along and see how they do.  If anybody think they can do better, shoot me a template and I'll implement it if I like it too.  It'd be cool to have faction specific ones as well.

Off to update my forum with new links, hopefully another update tonight!

EDIT:  There is an updated version on my forums.


  1. Thanks for the updated Alpha Strike Card Maker, I for one would love the Wolf Dragoons card / images if you would be so kind. And Thank you for all your Hard Work !!.



    1. I zipped it up, with 32 cores and a triple SSD raid 0, it took like 5 seconds, I started to copy it over and it was 2.4GB! May be easier if I sent you the text file and just made your own cards locally. I'll see what I can do, but it may wait until after the errata is posted so I can create the units with more accuracy.

  2. This is freakin' awesome!!!!! Thanks for putting it together. You always make such wonderful toys.

  3. Good stuff. I like the trick moving the circles to ovals -- for my 'Mech record sheet printer I found that changing an ammo track from a straight line of circles to a zigzag line made it (a) take up less space and (b) easier to use, especially with UACs and RACs.

    1. I like the idea of things like hexagons instead of circles. I used them on my original record sheets, but folks didn't like them as much as me apparently. The Alpha Strike cards *really* need redesigned anyway, there simply isn't enough room for stuff, especially once you throw in things like large support vehicles, mobile structures, and dropships/warships.

  4. I downloaded the Card Maker program. Pretty slick, although I don't understand why the Movement category isn't in inches. And there seem to be extra abilities leftover from Battleforce that aren't in Alpha Strike. Thoughts?

    1. It is because those stats are pulled from, which has not been updated with the new conversion data yet. I would consider those the current, canon, *battleforce* cards. Quick Strike or Alpha Strike the movement would be doubled, and Alpha Strike has new abilities and different stats.

      Totally outside my area to fix though, but the CGL folks are getting a big update ready, unknown ETA.

  5. Thanks for this great tool.

    On my computer the unit type (TP) is always displayed as BM (Battlemech) no matter what kind of unit I select. This is also displayed as BM if a save the card as .png to my HD.
    But all the other functions I've checked so far seem to work.

    1. I wasn't able to duplicate this, nor find anywhere in code that would have been set. Sure you have the latest version? Click the question mark and make sure its v1.2. I've created thousands of cards of all types and haven't seen that behavior :(

    2. V1.20 of 23rd August.
      Strange... but that's supposed to happen when I test a System ;-)
      I don't find bugs... they find me.

      I am using an older version of Firefox. Maybe this could be the reason.

    3. Well the browser doesn't matter at all, however the .NET version might. Make sure you have all your windows updates run. I can't duplicate it though, and don't even have the string "BM" anywhere in the code. If you start it up, change the "BM" to "CV", then click create, it still says at "BM"???
      Or was this issue when you did a batch import?

    4. When I change the Type (TP) of an unit manually it works just fine. Somehow it seems to import the data from the MUL with BM set for every unit.

    5. Ah HA! Ok, got it... the MUL doesn't support a "TP" yet, but it does have a longer type. I updated my code to work with it and show proper types. It'll be version 1.21, and I'll release it later today on the forum. Thanks for the bug report!

  6. I'm new to alpha strike and I'm trying to get the cards, is there a way to get the program from you?
    Please let me know.

    1. Oh gosh, the latest update on the blog has the link, just click on the top battletech engineer link.

      Or here is the URL for ya: