The results of our survey to determine if you preferred splash (hachure) contours or concentric lines to represent elevation on General Staff maps are in: 58.21% voted for concentric contour lines and 41.79% voted for splash or hachure contour lines.
The results of our splash (hachure) contour lines versus concentric contour lines survey. 58.21% for concentric contour lines, 41.79% for splash contours.
However, while waiting for the results of the survey we wound up writing a splash (hachure) contour algorithm anyway:
An example of splash contours.
This isn’t perfect and we’ll continue to optimize it. However, General Staff will now include both methods of displaying elevation on a map: splash (hachure) and concentric elevation lines.
We need your input on how elevation (hills and ridges) will be displayed in General Staff. Originally we had planned on using ‘splash contours’. Splash contours were often used in quick sketch maps on the battlefield and they have an authentic look to them.
An example of a splash contour representing a hill (artwork by Ed Isenberg).
However, recently “Cry Havoc” – a Grognard on Facebook – asked if we were going to include the original Kriegsspiel Meckel map with General Staff. That got us thinking and taking another look at the original Kriegsspiel maps. Below is a map from the original American Kriegsspiel (circa 1892-8):
An original American Kriegsspiel map (circa 1892). Note the elevation contour lines. Click to enlarge.
Obviously, concentric elevation contours were in use in the 19th century so we could be authentic using either method of display.
This leads us to a very simple user survey: