TradeWars 1000 v9 (Davenport) Sysop Instructions

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This is a QuickBBS door! I offer support MAINLY to QuickBBS sysops. This is
because that is the bulletin board software that I am most familiar with.
Anyone contacting me for help on a problem should completely list all
problems in detail, INCLUDING system configuration. I have recieved too many
requests for help where so little imformation was given to me that that I was
forced to reply "I don't know what's wrong!" PLEASE, if you call my system
and request help, be complete in your descriptions of the problem and your
configuration!

Help WILL be made to sysops of other BBS programs IF they are complete with
the description of their problem. Now I dont mind helping BUT the number of
messages I have recieved with a description like "I am running xxxyyyzzz BBS
v99.123 and I cant get it to run. What's Wrong?" is simply amazing! How on
EARTH am I supposed to respond to that other than "read the docs" or simply
ignoring the question altogether?! I many cases, the questions have already
been answered. BEFORE asking, READ my Trade Wars message base FIRST!

BE complete and concise and friendly and polite in your requests for help,
and I will be pleased to help you. Be abusive and incomplete and impolite and
RUDE in your DEMANDS for help and you will get the response you deserve.
(Silence!)


With that out of the way, on to the good stuff!


Welcome to Trade Wars 1000, a unique version of the game that is compatible
with QuickBBS!


To do this, I have taken much of the parameters that most doors take from the
BBS's data files, and placed them into a data file used by TW1K. This data
file is created when you run TWINT1K.EXE and is an ASCII file that you can
edit to change operating parameters of the game at will. (More on this later!)


To start, you MUST run TWINT1K.EXE. This is the game initialization program
that sets up all the data files needed by TW1K. To keep your BBS directory
uncluttered with the game's files, I have re-written the game so that it can
be run from its OWN directory. I STRONGLY suggest that you do this! Once you
run the initialization program ONCE, you should NEVER have to run it again,
since it will erase all current players in the game and ALL respective data
files! The only exception to this rule would be the result of a catestrophic
error, such as a power outage while the game was updating its file causing
corruption of the file(s) OR if you just want a change of universe.


When you run the initialization program, it will set up a small data file
called TWDAT.DAT. This is used by BOTH the editor (TWEDIT) and the game
(TWQ.EXE) so be SURE to run the init program first! Here is an example of
that file with descriptions of what the various variables are for.


c:\bbs\Bullet50  ;Name of scoreboard file, NUL if you dont want one.
3  ;Number of minutes with no keystrokes before hanging up.
1  ;Alias's allowed flag. 0 = OFF, 1 = ON (I suggest ON!)
0  ;DEBUG flag, 0 = OFF, 1 = ON (I SUGGEST OFF!)
3  ;Number of times a day user is allowed to play.
ALAN  ;Sysop First Name.
DAVENPORT  ;Sysop's LAST name.
COM1  ;COM port used. (0-2 only) 0 is for local only! UPPER CASE!
Al's Cabin QBBS  ;Name of your system as you want it to appear in the game.
-1  ;Default screen mode with remote callers -1 is on, 0 is off

To run TW1K, you have to pass it the user's parameters from QBBS. I have
included a sample menu from my QuickBBS to show you how to do this. It is
called "TWARS.MNU" and is packed with this document.

For those of you writing convert programs for other BBS programs other than
QuickBBS, I have listed the parameters passed on the command line below:

TWQ.EXE P1 P2 P3 P4 P5 P6

P1 = Baud Rate of caller (0 = LOCAL MODE)
P2 = Time left in user session (In minutes)
P3 = User's record number. (NOT currently used but DON'T leave it out!)
P4 = User's FIRST name
P5 = User's LAST name
P6 = Graphics mode 0=OFF, 1=ON


To run the game in the LOCAL mode, do it this way:

TWQ.EXE /L
or
TWQ.EXE 0 99 0 Alan Davenport 1

If you start the game with the "/L" switch, it will ask for a first and last
name. So if you use method 2, (Perhaps called from a batch file.) it will put
your name for you and you will not be prompted for a name.


When you run init, the game's main data file will be created. This will turn
out to be over 126K in size [!]. Init will generate RANDOM paths between
sectors and will place all ports (Except for the "Union" and Cabal HQ) in
RANDOM locations. The advantage of this is everyone will start out on equal
footing in YOUR game. Experienced players who have the standard map memorized
will NOT have an unfair advantage over beginners in your game and you can
periodically re-start the game to keep interest up. HOWEVER, though Init will
NOT generate one-way paths (except for short-cuts back to sector 1) it can
and probably WILL generate a few pairs of sectors or groups of sectors that
are ISOLATED from the rest of galaxy! You will see an entry in the game's
message log (TWMESG.DAT) like this;

*** ERROR. Sector path not found between 123 and 456!

After initialization, run FIXWARPS.EXE which willl find and fix any bad warps
in the new universe. Read FIXWARPS.DOC for more information.


You MUST run TWMAINT.EXE after initializing the game and before playing for
the FIRST time AND AT LEAST ONCE A DAY EVERY DAY THERE AFTER! Read
TWMAINT.DOC for details on this program! DO READ IT!

I Cannot stress this enough;

TWMAINT.EXE IS AN IMPORTANT PART OF THE GAME AND IT TRADE WARS WILL NOT RUN
PROPERLY IF YOU DO NOT RUN IT DAILY ON SCHEDULE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


The TWMESG.DAT file USED to be a message file to YOU, the Sysop but I have
changed it to the "Galactic Newspaper" (Computer option 8) for the players to
read. It USED to be compressed by a program called TWMSG.EXE but now IT IS
COMPRESSED BY TWMAINT.EXE DAILY! "TWMSG.EXE" is obsolete and should be THROWN
OUT if you are running an older version of the game! Remove if from your
game's batch file also!

You should provide a way for your users to read the news file out of the
game. To see how to do it, examine the sample batch file for the game below:


c:
cd c:\board\tw1000
Echo Trade Wars 1000 now loading! >COM1
TWQ.EXE %1 %2 %3 %4 %5 %6
copy twmesg.dat c:\board\bullet50
echo And another day of peace (?!) has passed in the galaxy! >COM1
cd c:\board
loadbbs.bat


To run TWEDIT (The Trade Wars 1000 Data Editor) in the local mode, simply
invoke it with no parameters.

TWEDIT.EXE


There are 4 FUNCTION keys active in the game. F10 will put you in Chat mode
with online users. (ESCAPE termintes CHAT.) F9 toggles screen mode from on to
off when REMOTE callers are online. (In LOCAL mode, it is ALWAYS on!) F8 will
allow you to adjust the amount of time left for a caller in the game. (Either
UP or DOWN.) F5 is TERMINATE NOW. That is, if you hit F5 the game will close
all files and exit immediately.



Remember, though I have greatly enhanced this game, Chris Sherrick originally
wrote it and holds the COPYRIGHT to it. I could not have come up with such a
fine, orignal idea. My programming skills work best at improving already fine
software. Remember to give thanks to Chris for the ORIGINAL idea each time
your users play and enjoy this fine game! I do not want and WILL NOT accept
money for the game. All I ask is that you ENJOY it!


Last but not least, be SURE that you use the copy of the instructions that I
have provided for your users. (TWINSTR.DOC) They are constantly updated to
reflect all the changes, modifications and enhancements that I make to the
game.

If you have any problems, questions, suggestions, or just want to chat
with me about the game, you can call my BBS at (201)-827-xxxx. 8-N-1
At any baud rate up to 2400. ("Unlisted" PCP access exchange!)

In any case, you can always get the latest version of the game on my system.

Happy Gaming!

Alan Davenport 07/28/88 01:13 AM

PS: Thanks are due to my friend Dale Ott of Pearl City, Hawaii who calls
almost daily <!!> to play my version of TW. His suggestions, ideas and
critique of my ideas have been invaluable help to me in my work on the game.
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