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Which layout for a standard 18 hex (6x3) chicago style city block works best on the hex.

North South.  Full sightlines run through the 17 hex long map, and moving east/west requires a lot of turning
7 (33.3%)
NE SW.  Full sightlines run sideways up the hex at a slant.  You dont need to turn to run along a city block, but the blocks are all slanted cause of hex grid.
14 (66.7%)

Total Members Voted: 21

Author Topic: City Blocks on hex grid  (Read 1533 times)

DevianID

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City Blocks on hex grid
« on: 26 November 2021, 04:53:53 »
Not sure how to best set up my city board, since square city blocks are hard to replicate on hexes.  Thoughts?
« Last Edit: 05 December 2021, 23:50:57 by DevianID »

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #1 on: 26 November 2021, 05:06:57 »
Just blame futuristic city planning for the lack of right angles. Go with the flow - it gives the most realistic 'feel' of roads that way, if not the look.
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Sartris

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #2 on: 26 November 2021, 10:24:10 »
I’ve used the city street grids from map set 4 and they were decent. You could use them as a template (or avoid that design completely if you don’t like it)

https://www.sarna.net/wiki/File:MapCityStreetGridPark1.jpg
https://www.sarna.net/wiki/File:MapCityStreetGridPark2.jpg



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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #3 on: 26 November 2021, 10:58:35 »
For me, keeping the straight sprints down each block is more important than keeping the 90 degree turns.   My city grids are N/S crossed by lines 60 degrees (on hex face), giving me rhomboid shaped blocks.

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #4 on: 26 November 2021, 11:28:34 »
I've always treated hexagonal city blocks as an abstraction of square blocks.  So much else of BattleTech is abstracted already :)

Why are hexes a thing and not octagons?
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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #5 on: 26 November 2021, 11:58:58 »
For me, keeping the straight sprints down each block is more important than keeping the 90 degree turns.   My city grids are N/S crossed by lines 60 degrees (on hex face), giving me rhomboid shaped blocks.

This.

Just pick a direction for your "Main" streets to run & then 1 pick one other direction for your "Cross" streets & nothing runs in the 3rd direction & you still have plenty of 2-way crossings.
Don't put in lots of them because most big cities have a couple buildings to a block unless then are skyscrapers.  Even then sometimes its more than one.
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Sartris

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #6 on: 26 November 2021, 12:24:14 »
If you make all rhomboid blocks, they create the illusion of an isometric view like in SimCity

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #7 on: 26 November 2021, 14:43:34 »
Why are hexes a thing and not octagons?

Octagons don't nest perfectly with one another like squares and hexagons do. Octagons leave square spaces between them which would be awkward to account for.
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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #8 on: 26 November 2021, 16:44:49 »
Hexagons are bestagons

I also would go with the N/S main road and another set at 60.  If you wanted to throw in one road on the other 60 degree, go ahead, but I wouldn't go full out where you start having triangular blocks.  That's too much road

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #9 on: 26 November 2021, 17:17:33 »
Hexagons are bestagons

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #10 on: 27 November 2021, 10:28:56 »
All of the 32x32 MM boards I build for cities are done as grids considering a lot of the 'new' cities that cropped up were built on grids if terrain features did not interfere.  But I DO sprinkle in city parks, special government buildings, bridges, and embankments to keep it from being 100+ hex sight line.  The maps are built to work with each other to the extent I can build a city of whatever size, fighting from the downtown to the edge where the suburbs start.

On a 32x32 map- which is why I settled on that size- you get N/S roads and then the block 'ends' after 3 hexes with the '2/5' facings being the other road.  As Sartis said, it works well with the MM isometric view.
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DevianID

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #11 on: 27 November 2021, 21:52:13 »
Sounds like the majority prefer oblong blocks instead of wiggling trying to make true east west.  I liked the idea of 3d perspective.

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #12 on: 28 November 2021, 22:14:03 »
Rhombus IIRC . . . they still fit as 'blocks' I will have to see about getting Java worked out so I can link them.
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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #13 on: 29 November 2021, 13:25:36 »
Rhombus IIRC . . . they still fit as 'blocks' I will have to see about getting Java worked out so I can link them.

a hexagon contains 3 rhombuses (rhombi?)

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #14 on: 29 November 2021, 14:30:00 »
A lot of shapes contain others, lol . . . but the 3 hex by 3 hex 'blocks' can deliver that sort of thing as long as you realize it 'leans' one way or the other.
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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #15 on: 29 November 2021, 16:55:40 »
For me, keeping the straight sprints down each block is more important than keeping the 90 degree turns.   My city grids are N/S crossed by lines 60 degrees (on hex face), giving me rhomboid shaped blocks.

Concur: to me, being able to scurry down the streets quickly is more important for both the vibe and the essence of a city fight than actually seeing the blocks as squares.  :)

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #16 on: 29 November 2021, 23:54:25 »
The chicago style block including roads is 100m by 200m.  So 6 hexes tall by 3 wide gets us to 180x90, plus half the road that surrounds each block, makes for 105m x 195m blocks (counting the roads inbetween as half a hex for each block).  This works out really nicely for a pretty standard city block, but while north south roads are simple, the east west were tricky.

So im going with the 6x3 rhombus per the poll results.  The east west rhombus grid will block clear LOS from east to west due to the angle, giving some time to maneuver on your side of a 1x2 map for east west deployments, which is an added bonus from going with rhombus designs.

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #17 on: 30 November 2021, 11:14:11 »
Make square "blocks", but allow traffic along the horizontal roads to sidestep diagonally at no additional movement cost (or 1 MP for every TWO sidesteps.  Line of sight would NOT be blocked by the buildings in the half-hexes that intervene into the lanes, since they're only abstractions to make it work on a hex grid, and only the other HALF of the hex would contain buildings.

As said, squares and hexes produce a solid array of spaces, but octagons leave gaps.  You then have to account for diagonal movement being almost 50% farther than horizontal or vertical movement, so you end up needing half-movement-points or something like that to account for the differences.  It opens up a big 55 gallon drum of worms that you don't need to deal with on a hex grid.

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #18 on: 30 November 2021, 14:24:05 »
The chicago style block including roads is 100m by 200m.  So 6 hexes tall by 3 wide gets us to 180x90, plus half the road that surrounds each block, makes for 105m x 195m blocks (counting the roads inbetween as half a hex for each block).  This works out really nicely for a pretty standard city block, but while north south roads are simple, the east west were tricky.

So im going with the 6x3 rhombus per the poll results.  The east west rhombus grid will block clear LOS from east to west due to the angle, giving some time to maneuver on your side of a 1x2 map for east west deployments, which is an added bonus from going with rhombus designs.

Is this for a table or a MM map?
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glitterboy2098

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #19 on: 30 November 2021, 16:06:44 »
I’ve used the city street grids from map set 4 and they were decent. You could use them as a template (or avoid that design completely if you don’t like it)

https://www.sarna.net/wiki/File:MapCityStreetGridPark1.jpg
https://www.sarna.net/wiki/File:MapCityStreetGridPark2.jpg
some of the later ones would work as examples as well
https://www.sarna.net/wiki/File:MapCityResidential.jpg
https://www.sarna.net/wiki/File:MapCitySuburbs.jpg
https://www.sarna.net/wiki/File:MapCitySkyscraper.jpg
https://www.sarna.net/wiki/File:MapCityDowntown.jpg

https://www.sarna.net/wiki/File:MapSeaport.jpg

generally, go for rhombus or diamond shapes, with a few triangles where needed

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #20 on: 30 November 2021, 17:03:16 »
One thing also to remember about making a 'city' map.

A lot of the US Western and I assume late 1800s and early 1900s for places that were colonies have actual square grids when located on plains or other large flat spaces.  When a city is crammed in next to mountains, river, ocean, or around harbors with hills or a more primitive start up are more likely to have twisting streets following/avoiding terrain features.

IMO one of the better examples might be to compare Richmond, VA which is built on a river with hills and back in the horse-y days to Denver, CO . . . a city built at the foot of the mountains on the high plains.  More than Richmond, compare Seattle area to Denver- both are up against mountains.

So, are you in a city squeezed between mountains and ocean/lake/rapid river?  or is your city built on the plains next a moderate river & a hub in the transport network?


Hmm, might have to make a barge harbor map for canals, rivers and lake traffic . . . by what I can find, the docks should mostly be depth 1.  It would be interesting to fight mechs through a barge harbor with docks using 'bridge' rules, hovercraft zipping about, maybe some wheeled security vehicles driving down embankments and docks to engage enemy forces.  Get some Mauna Kea and other 'monitor' type small ships . . .

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #21 on: 30 November 2021, 17:19:06 »
Hexagons are bestagons

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #22 on: 30 November 2021, 18:41:38 »
I've always treated hexagonal city blocks as an abstraction of square blocks.  So much else of BattleTech is abstracted already :)

Why are hexes a thing and not octagons?
One word tessellation
Squares, Triangles and Hexagons Tessellate, Octagons don't.
That is they would leave unused spaces on a gaming board.
« Last Edit: 30 November 2021, 18:43:51 by Nebfer »

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #23 on: 01 December 2021, 00:14:06 »
Quote
Is this for a table or a MM map?
This is for a table for me personally.  I ordered a bunch of buildings this past black friday, but when looking at city maps other people have done they didnt have a 'lived in block' feel, and often it was just each 1-2 hex building surrounded by its own street.  So I wanted to build city blocks that I lay down, instead of just buildings--laying down a dozen blocks will also be way faster to set up than 100 various terrain tiles. 

Quote
So, are you in a city squeezed between mountains and ocean/lake/rapid river?  or is your city built on the plains next a moderate river & a hub in the transport network?
I looked at denver, per your suggestion.  They do about a 200x100 rectangular block, but some areas have a 100x100 block structure.  So some of my 200x100 blocks should have a decent alley in the middle if im going by the denver standard.  Then, by the river, denver rotates its blocks to follow the river, and on the hill just zones whatever curvy shapes nature provides.  Thus, if I place a random river on my map, the blocks close to the river I should rotate, and if I place some hills on the map I should put whatever freestanding buildings will lay flat where they lay flat for 'highland park'
Edit: Looked at Seattle.  Seattle also does n/s grid, BUT again near the water aligns that part of the grid to run along the water, making some interesting shapes where the angled 'waterfront' blocks meet the traditional 'n/s' blocks.  If nothing else, rotating some blocks to border a river or port gives some character to an otherwise boring n/s layout, which I really like for making a 'lived in' city.
« Last Edit: 01 December 2021, 00:20:34 by DevianID »

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #24 on: 01 December 2021, 00:36:33 »
A quirk of building my city was noticing then reconciling map hex size versus mech height.  1 inch is about 6 meters for mech height, but 1 inch is 24 meters on the map.  So buildings in map scale of about 1/944 are short next to a mech, which is in 1/256 right?  Hence why I settled on collections of buildings in mech scale.  The buildings are still not in map scale, but collections of buildings hide some of the width/height disconnect for me.
I did find some cool map scale buildings, but a 4 story home was less than an inch tall despite being the right width on the map, and made the mechs look more like Godzilla than they are supposed to.

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #25 on: 01 December 2021, 03:09:47 »
Huh?  This got pinned?

One of the things with Seattle is while they do have grids when they are able, since a lot of it is built on the side of a steep hill and down to the water you can also end up with a more 'terrace' approach where the streets will have different elevations.  When you get down near the water, some of those are really curvy if they follow the Sound's coast.  Some places have bridges crossing the inlets so you do not have to drive all around the shoreline.

Anyway, one of the main points was that a lot of the 'colony' (read anywhere but Terra) are going to have a grid set up to the streets simply b/c they will be planned as a whole rather than the more organic approach as seen in a lot of Old World cities.

Then again, you can also have fun- one of the rather eccentric planetary rulers of yore gave a decree that straight roads were outlawed, and thus new roads must be curving masterpieces of design not going straight for any further than 100 meters.
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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #26 on: 01 December 2021, 13:29:12 »
The core of the non-Terra cities is likely to be planned, but given all of the periods of interstellar darkness and disorganisation in the BT timeline, areas outside the core, or newer settlements, could be either planned or terrain-directed. So make something that makes sense to you (and looks like it'll be fun to fight across).
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DevianID

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Re: City Blocks on hex gird
« Reply #27 on: 05 December 2021, 19:28:24 »
I built several city blocks so far.  For a 2 mapsheet city battle, I need 8 'blocks' of 3x6 hexes with 1 hex border of road all around per mapsheet.  I have a few smaller irregular building clusters glued up where the rhomboid blocks dont perfectly fit, but ran out of buildings after making 12 city blocks.  After starting this city project, it made me really appreciate just how many buildings go into just a simple 1x2 map realistic city.  I ordered some more mdf buildings to finish the project, probably not going to arrive till January though.

EDIT: as a follow up, I laid out the tiles on a 2 mapsheet board in megamek.  The rhombus pattern made a southwest-northeast running 2 hex wide 'main road' for east/west, at 31 hexes long, presenting interesting sniping down the main thruway.  The west north road and east south secondary roads end before crossing the whole map, but allow for some back alley fighting through the north/south roads when trying to avoid the 31x2 hex 'sniper' highway, as the 2 center city blocks must be fought over as they strategically control east/west passage across the city besides the 'sniper' highway.  This 2 map sheet layout looks really good for balanced city play, with no easy route for recon/objective grabbing but opportunities for all kinds of back and forth gameplay, and 2 actually important center map city blocks that need to be fought over.  With a 3 wide block, you also need 8 jump if you want to cross more than 1 block at a time without using one of the main or secondary throughways, meaning you cant cheese the map with jump jets unless you are packing a LOT of them--so spiders and Ostscouts benefit, but not necessarily assassins or phoenix hawks.
« Last Edit: 05 December 2021, 23:49:19 by DevianID »