Bear in mind, the things we NEED to convey:
1. Team color (icon color, typically)
2. What is this ship? (icon shape, typically -- and maybe shading?)
3. What is its action style? (FRD, attack-move, group move, and maybe a few others)
--That's the little icon in the upper left of these examples.
--In the first game, it was a border color, but that has limited attractiveness and clarity.
4. What is the mark level of this ship?
--Here it has two examples, one with it under them (as with the first game), and one at the right of the health bar.
5. What is the health of the squad?
--The health bar is shown here in kind of a rainbow gradient, but really it would be all one color that changes to those colors as it ticks down from full to almost-dead.
6. Is this squad selected?
--That's not really represented here. I was thinking that this could be done in a fashion where there is a white outline stroke around them to denote that.
7. Is this under a shield?
-- I've suggested the little "shield" words above the health bar, for this one, but not sure if that's the best.
-- In Classic, that worked as a bubble around the icon. It was clear, but not my favorite thing.
8. Is this cloaked?
-- Again, the small text above the health bar here.
-- That was a purple bubble in Classic IIRC.
-- If something is shielded and cloaked, then just stacking the text vertically would be the idea here.
9. This needs to show well at very small scale.
-- So that you can see the icon in the right-hand side of the screen (the ship list GUI, like in the first side of the game).
-- And so that we don't take up so much screen space as we presently do with these in the game.
10. But showing up with a nice smooth vector outline or similar when large would also be nice.
-- Because the icons being TOO small when you're zoomed way in but still seeing the icons is probably not going to feel right.
-- And the little markers showing "this icon refers to the squad under it" is not a bad idea here, as you notice in the first row.
-- But at the same time, whether these should hover over the action or simply be closer down as little icons (almost like targeting brackets) more directly centered on the squads is a question.
11. OPTIONAL: Since icons now represent squads with multiple ships, we COULD have it show the ship count in there.
-- In the first row, that's what the little number in the bottom right of the icons is meant to be.
-- I think that gets too cluttered fast, though.
So, right, this is easy! ...
If we just want to fall back on exactly what the first game did, then sure, it's pretty easy. But I don't think that was all that attractive, and both Blue and I think something better can be done here. So let's take some time to consider a few alternative ways to organize information.