Zone of Control

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The ability of game elements to affect the functionality of those adjacent to them.

This pattern is a still a stub.


Being a military concept, it isn't to surprising that Wargames such as Axis & Allies: Battle of the Bulge and World War 3 are the primary users of Zone of Control.

Other games that adopted the use of Zone of Control include several installments of the Civilization series and Bloodbowl, the later which uses Zone of Control to make throwing and catching the ball move difficult if opponents are nearby. It also lets players try to tackle those that try to run pass opponents.

Using the pattern

The two main design choices for creating Zone of Control in a game is what generates them and what their effects are. Zone of Controls typically spread out from Units, and more rarely from Avatars, but letting Territories create them can let them exist independently from these or spread out from Installations and other stationary game elements.

The effects of a Zone of Control is most often linked to either Combat or Movement. For Combat, this is typically providing advantages to friendly Units or disadvantages to hostile ones. A Zone of Control typically affects Movement by imposing Movement Limitations, e.g. forcing Units to stop if they enter a Zone of Control (e.g.

, requiring higher Movement costs, or allowing

Being able to ignore the Zone of Control of some types of Units can be a Privileged Abilities to other types of Units

Can Instantiate

Can Modulate

Area Control Combat, Movement,

Choke Points


Zone of Control is most commonly a way to let Avatars or Units extended agency beyond the exact physical location they have in a Game World. In this, they can be seen as a way to modify Area Control.

As they often affect Combat or Movement, Zones of Control create a need for both Strategic and Tactical Planning; the former for determining which areas are generally good to extend these from and the latter for how to handle or place them in any current situation during gameplay.


Can Instantiate

Movement Limitations

Can Modulate

Area Control, Avatars, Choke Points, Combat, Movement, Units

Can Be Instantiated By


Can Be Modulated By

Privileged Abilities

Possible Closure Effects


Potentially Conflicting With



New pattern created in this wiki.