Hardwar – Upgrade 3

This section documents Hardwar Upgrade 3. On this page:

9.1 History

9.1.1 What happened to U3?

The U3 patch entered beta testing at the start of April 2002. There were a total of five U3 beta patches, released to a small number of testers, myself (timski) included. They introduced a lot of new features, many of which were never fully added. All of the betas have fundamental problems, such as joysticks not working, AI getting stuck, plot stalling, and a broken economy. Development appeared to stop during Summer 2002, and testers heard nothing more from the Software Refinery. Also see Where did the Software Refinery go?.

9.1.2 Why was U3 released?

U3 was not officially released. Instead the beta patches were made available by certain former testers. This was primarily in response to certain people offering to sell them, and the disappearance of the developer. The patches have not been released with the consent of their authors. Once the patches had been released, it became important to document them – hence this section. The patches are beta-quality work in progress only. None of the patches can be regarded as release quality, and many players may find U2.04 (the last official patch) to be more playable.

9.1.3 Where can I get U3?

Patches are being made available at http://zedo.hardwar.org.uk/patch.htm and http://www.downloads.hardwar.info/ . Patches require the password “psychobobs2”. After applying patches you may need to reset the video settings from the launcher. Further modifications may be required, particularly if using beta 5 – I strongly recommend you read through the Technical Issues and Modifications section below to familiarise yourself with common problems and solutions. Also consider downloading and applying fan-made patches and fixes for U3 beta, see Are there any patches for the U3 betas? What is Hardwar E? below.

9.1.4 What differences are there between U3 versions?

These are based on Software Refinery’s notes to testers.

  • Beta 1: Added Terminal Interface (activated using “o”) with commands LOOK, L, CASH, GOODS, EXITS, X, OUT, BAYS, BOARD, BOARDPASS, LAUNCH, TARGET, AUTOPILOT, HANGAR, RECRUIT, ORDER, EXEC, STAFF, BLAG, PLANS, PERMISSIONS, HIDE, HELP; Added require passwords option; Added restrict god hangar option; Added manufacturing including Central Industrial, Added Shears Yard (makes pods and engines).
  • Beta 2: Bug fixes to stock and manufacturing interface; Boardpass terminal command no longer works for a moth without a passenger seat; DEPOSIT and WITHDRAW terminal commands added; CASH terminal command now also shows cash held in your hangar; Bay numbers made consistent between terminal and hangar bay browser; Radar now shows your staff in Green; Fixed terminal crash when AUTOPILOT entered with no parameters; Maximum fog distance increased for 3DFX, and 3DFX bug fixes; BLAG can now blag moths; HUD now displays autopilot status.
  • Beta 3: Fixed AUTOPILOT command; Syntax of TARGET command changed, for example to “target downtown moths”; Added THRUST, TELL, SAY, WHO; Fixed bug which caused in-game terminal interface not to work on a network version; Added Terminal Server; Added mini-MUD rooms and links between buildings (limited network); Added ability to run command scripts on startup.
  • Beta 4: Notes missing. Around this time Admin and online setup options improved. Many bug fixes, particularly addressing terminal server/interface crashes. Manufacturing functions in beta 4, except that AI pilots will not sell goods to your hangar. I believe some of the non-economy commands and features shown as implemented in beta 5, were in fact added to beta 4.
  • Beta 5: Fixed crashes with pilot related commands such as GREET and WAVE; ‘Debriefing Zone’ restored; Added a ‘create’ command to create buildings (limited use); Added subcommands for HANGAR – LOGO, TYPE and SOFTWARE – for builders only; Fixed problems with missing linebreaks in PLANS and ORDER REPORT commands; Added HANGAR STOCK; Improvements to link connection (slow/fast) modes; Terminal server disabled when joining as a network client; Added Fumbler, Disabler and Blaster weapons (and added Smart Weapons Corp to make them); Complete reworking of the way the economy and traders work; Fixed crashes due to movement in the terminal interface; Downtown-Reservoir tunnel opened (it was always in the game, just hidden).

9.1.5 Which version is best?

It is hard to answer this question because it varies by users’ machine and what features they are expecting. Later betas are the most feature rich, generally the most stable, and tend to have solved many of the minor bugs and crashes that can become annoying in earlier versions. Later versions have variable joystick (throttle) support – beta 3 and 4 tend to support serial based joysticks, beta 5 USB based joysticks. Beta 5 has serious problem related to the economy and reloading games. Beta 4 or 5 seem to be the most popular. Consider trying multiple beta versions, although you may still de-patch to the stable U2.04 in the end.

9.2 Terminal Commands and Scripting

9.2.1 What does the Terminal Interface do?

The Terminal Interface (TI) allowed greater control and new features to be added quickly. It also introduced the Terminal Server – see What does the Terminal Server do? below. The TI is a command line driven interface. It may be access by pressing “o”, and hidden by typing “hide” or pressing Esc in later beta versions. For a list of commands, see What terminal commands are there? below.

9.2.2 What does the Terminal Server do?

The Terminal Server (TS) was introduced in beta 3. It allows the TI (Terminal Interface) to be accessed through telnet style clients (essentially any text based client that supports TCP/IP connections), and hence allows any TI command to be executed from a remote machine with no Hardwar client. TS is primarily aimed at long-term online games, but can be tested by connecting to a game hosted on the same machine ( TS must be enabled in the launcher’s network tab, by specifying a terminal port. The default, 0, disables the TS. 23 (standard telnet port) or 9001 are commonly used. The terminal server allows everything from basic remote game administration to playing whilst away from a gaming machine… See How do I connect a telnet client to the Terminal Server? below for a step-by-step guide to connecting via telnet. Characters can be created via the Terminal Server (type NEW when prompted after entering the name), but such characters will start without a moth. You do not need to log out of the TS – just disconnect from the server via the telnet client. The same pilot may be both logged in via telnet and a game client at the same time. The TS is potentially a powerful tool – see Can I script events and ‘bots? below.

9.2.3 How do I connect a telnet client to the Terminal Server?

These instructions assume the use of HyperTerminal. This telnet client is available on most Windows machines, and has a reasonable user interface, making it straightforward for those unfamiliar with telnet.

  • On the Hardwar launcher Network tab, select a port for the terminal server to use. “9001” is suggested, although others can be used if your machine is already using 9001. Port “0” will disable to the terminal server. Start a game (a dedicated network server game is the easiest to experiment with on a low-specification machine).
  • In HyperTerminal, select File-New Connection, name the connection to continue, then select TCP/IP from the “Connect using” box, then in “Host name” type “”, and in “Port number” type “9001” (or whatever). If you are connecting to another machine, replace “” with the IP address of the other machine.
  • Log yourself in, or create a character by typing the pilot name and then typing NEW at the following prompt.
  • The terminal will now function as if you are using the Terminal Interface within the game. To see what you are typing in HyperTerminal, select File-Properties-Settings, then ASCII Setup, then tick “Echo typed characters locally”.

If you are sending scripts, this can be done in HyperTerminal using Transfer-Send Text File. Before you send a script file you may need to change your telnet client’s setup so that it sends a delay between lines. If no delay is set, the Hardwar client/server won’t be able to process and respond to each line before the next arrives, and you’ll get a screen full of errors and most of the script will fail to run. I recommend at least a 100 millisecond delay between lines, although if you have problems consider increasing this. To do this in HyperTerminal, select File-Properties-Settings, then ASCII Setup. Now change the “Line delay” to “100”.

9.2.4 What terminal commands are there?

Here is a list, with a short summary of features and usage where usage isn’t obvious. The list is based on beta 5. Earlier versions may miss certain commands (noted in the list). A few had their syntax changed from earlier versions (take care if using an earlier beta). I’ve written commands in capitals for clarity, but unless noted, they may be typed in any case. Note that where parameters/arguments are used, typically they take the form command (space) subcommand (comma) value, with subsequent values or subcommands separated by commas, for example “hangar stock,Swarm,sell,100”:

  • AUTOPILOT: Engages autopilot to fly towards a targeted item. Target must be set before engaging autopilot. Off disengages the autopilot. Usage: AUTOPILOT [TARGET or OFF]. Note that the SALVAGE option isn’t implemented, and may crash the game.
  • BAYS: Reports the moths parked in the current hangar, with pilots.
  • BLAG: Allows you to get free cash or moths (restricted by PERMISSIONS). Usage: BLAG [CASH or MOTH],[value] where value is the amount of cash, or the moth type: 1 = Moon Moth, 2 = Silver Y, 3 = Neo Tiger, 4 = Hawk, 5 = Deaths Head, 6 = Police, 7 = Alien, 8 = Swallow.
  • BOARD: Board a moth parked in a specific bay in the current hangar as the pilot. Usage: BOARD [Bay number].
  • BOARDPASS: As BOARD, but to board as a passenger (requires Moon Moth). Usage: BOARDPASS [Bay number].
  • BUILD: Allows rooms to be constructed (restricted by PERMISSIONS, beta 3+, may have other unknown uses). Usage: BUILD [movement direction (see bottom of this list)],[short name]. When interfacing with an existing hangar, OUT is used to leave, and HLINK to enter. Also see How do I build rooms?.
  • CASH: Reports current cash total. From beta 2, this includes cash in your hangar if you are in your hangar.
  • CREATE: Related to building construction – not fully implemented (restricted by PERMISSIONS, beta 4). Known functionality: CREATE 0,n,[name] creates a god hangar style building called [name], which you can TELEPORT into, but which doesn’t physically exist on the map (also note that you can BUILD out of it, so, for example, you can create two god hangars with a godly walk link between them). CREATE AAGB,N,[name] (arguments here ARE CASE SENSITIVE) reopens the location of Vacant 0008 as a hangar (not a hangar one can buy, but it can be customized using various other Admin commands). CREATE AAGB,P,[name] makes the same hangar a private hangar (like Colony HQ). It seems that CREATE can only be used with hangar shapes that exist in the game by default, but are not assigned as hangars to start with – there are very few of these – the others are mostly buried half underground. In case you are wondering, the four character codes that make up the first argument can be worked out by logging the start of the game, and reading through the world creation part of startup (thanks to Wez for completing the puzzle).
  • DESCRIBE: Change the description of the current location (restricted by PERMISSIONS, beta 4+). Usage: DESCRIBE [description].
  • DEPOSIT: Transfers cash to the current hangar (beta 2+). You do not need to own the hangar. Usage: DEPOSIT [amount]. A bug allows depositing negative values, which results in withdrawal of cash. This works at any hangar with cash. It will deprive the hangar of cash, and so will tend to lead the economy to slowdown or stall because the hangar can no longer buy anything it needs.
  • EXEC: Executes a command as another pilot (restricted by PERMISSIONS unless a staff member). Usage: EXEC [Pilot name],[Command,subcommand,value,etc]. For example, “EXEC Fred,BAYS” will get Fred to report the moths parked in the hangar he is in.
  • EXITS or X: List available walk routes – if you are in a moth, the only option will be “out”, as in get out of moth.
  • GOODS: Reports current hangar inventory.
  • GREET: Sends a greeting πŸ™‚ (beta 3+).
  • GRIN: Grins πŸ˜‰ (beta 3+).
  • HANGAR: Sets custom hangar information. Relates to the hangar you are in at the moment. Usage: HANGAR [setting,value]. Basic settings are:
    • ACCESS – Sets access to PUBLIC or PRIVATE. Possibly bugged.
    • NAME – Renames hangar.
    • STATUS – With no settings, reports building statistics.
    • STOCK – Beta 4+: STOCK,ALL to list. STOCK,[Item name] to list stock for specific item. STOCK,[Item name],[BUY or SELL or MAXBUY],[Amount] to set the pricing for a specific item – for example “HANGAR STOCK,Swarm,SELL,100” to set the sale price of Swarm to 100.
      Admin settings (beta 4+, restricted by PERMISSIONS) are:
    • DAMAGE – With no value reports current damage. With value sets hangar damage to an amount between 0 and 16384.
    • LOGO – With no value report current logo. With value 0 to 16 sets logo icon. Values are: 1 = Warp, 2 = MonoRail, 3 = Lazarus, 4 = Klamp-G, 5 = Toxic, 6 = Skinners, 7 = Hardwar, 8 = Alpha, 9 = Mines, 10 = Port, 11 = Riverside, 12 = Highrise, 13 = Gamma, 14 = Downtown, 15 = Reservoir, 16 = Scrubbers.
    • SOFTWARE – With no value, lists software installed. With values, adds one or more options, for example “hangar software,cdfr”. Prefixing the options with ‘-‘ deinstalls them, for example “hangar software,-ps” removes sales and purchasing. Known options are: c = collect (player hangar or allow cabs), d = deliver (player hangar or allow cabs), f = fit, g = god menu, n = no player trade, m = moth sales, o = moth software changes, p = business will purchase, u = repair, r = remove, s = business will sell, t = trade list, x = no monorail (non-functional?), y = sell buildings (like an estate agent), z = buy buildings. Note that there is a limit on software options of about 7 and installing more will lead to the game crashing when you access the hangar menu – take care.
    • TYPE – Changes the internal design of the hangar. Values 0 to 5.
  • HELP: List commands.
  • HIDE: Hides terminal. On later betas Esc does this instead.
  • LAUGH: Like “SAY lol”… (beta 3+).
  • LAUNCH: Launches moth from hangar. Note that launch doesn’t propel you out of the airlock, so if you launch and do nothing else, eventually your ship will be destroyed in the airlock.
  • LOOK or L: Reports what you can see, MUD style.
  • MANFIND: Reports hangars manufacturing the specified item (restricted by PERMISSIONS, beta 5). Usage: MANFIND [item name]. Also see How are items cited in the economy commands?.
  • ORDER: Sends commands to your staff. Usage: ORDER [Staff name],[Subcommand],[Value]. For example, “ORDER Hitson,GO,Freds Builders”. Subcommands are:
    • BOARD,[Bay number] – Board moth at bay specified.
    • BUZZ,[building] – Fly around, but not dock at, the building specified in the value.
    • CLEAR – Cancel last order.
    • DISEMBARK – Get out of moth.
    • GO,[Building] – Fly to building specified in the value.
    • KILL,[pilot name] – Attack another pilot.
    • REPORT – Reports current plan (unlikely to be much use at the moment).
    • SELLALL,[Building] – Sell all cargo at the building specified.
    • STATUS – Report where they are.
  • OUT: Get out of moth or leave hangar.
  • PERMISSIONS: Transfers permissions between pilots. Permissions transfer from the Admin pilot. Usage: PERMISSIONS [Pilot name],[options]. Multiple options may be set at once, but are not comma separated, for example “PERMISSIONS Fred,bot”. Options are: s = set permissions, o = ORDER and EXEC any pilot, b = use BLAG, p = interact with plans, h = hijack moths and hangars, c = build, t = teleport, e = economy commands. Full list: “sobphcte”.
  • PLANS: Lists pilot plans, the instructions to pilots. Primarily useful in conjunction with EXEC, to see what other pilots are planning.
  • PRICEINFO: Lists average price, minimum price, stock, and number required (restricted by PERMISSIONS, beta 5). List currently exceeds terminal window size, so only useful via the Terminal Server.
  • PRODUCEINFO: Reports production requirements to make the specified item (restricted by PERMISSIONS, beta 5). Usage: PRODUCEINFO [item name]. Also see How are items cited in the economy commands?.
  • PURCHASEFIND: Reports hangars demanding the specified item (restricted by PERMISSIONS, beta 5). Usage: PURCHASEFIND [item name]. Also see How are items cited in the economy commands?.
  • RECRUIT: Hires a member of staff. You must be at the same location as the staff member to hire them. Usage: RECRUIT [Staff name].
  • SALEFIND: Reports hangars selling a specific item with prices (restricted by PERMISSIONS, beta 5). Usage: SALEFIND [item name]. Also see How are items cited in the economy commands?.
  • SAY: Talks to everyone in your current location (beta 3+). Usage: SAY [message].
  • STAFF: Lists current your staff by name.
  • TARGET: Sets target to the building or ship named. Usage: TARGET [Name of pilot or building].
  • TELEPORT: Jumps to a new location (restricted by PERMISSIONS, beta 4). Must be on foot. Usage: TELEPORT [hangar name].
  • TELL: Whisper to a specific player in a different location (beta 3+). Usage: TELL [pilot name],[message].
  • THRUST: Sets the thrust of your moth, by a specific value, full speed ahead, or no thrust (beta 3+). Usage: THRUST [value (-16384 to 16384) or MAX or STOP].
  • WAVE: Waves at pilots at your location (beta 3+).
  • WITHDRAW: Transfers cash from a hangar you own to your personal cash (beta 2+). Usage: WITHDRAW [amount].
  • WHO: Lists players (beta 3+). The letter after the name indicates the type of connection – “H” for Hardwar client, “T” for terminal.
  • Movement commands are mostly compass based, restricted by tunnels and rooms available: N/NE/E/SE/S/SW/W/NW, IN (enter a hangar), OUT (leave a hangar or moth), U (up a level), D (down a level) (beta 3+).

9.2.5 How do Admin permissions work?

The first character called “Admin” will automatically be assigned all permissions to run any command, including commands restricted by PERMISSIONS. Admin is designed like a root user for a computer: They may copy some or all of their privileges to other pilots using PERMISSIONS. There can only be one Admin pilot per game, so don’t get it killed πŸ˜‰ . Both the Admin and the target character must be logged in to exchange permissions. This can be done on higher specification machines by enabling HardLuck (see What is HardLuck.exe and how do I use it? above), enabling multiple instances from the Misc tab on the launcher, and then running two or more instances on the same machine. In later betas, the Admin may join the game via the Terminal Server (see What does the Terminal Server do? above), and exchange permissions with only one instance of Hardwar open. Beta 3 and earlier Admin must be the name of the first character created in order for Admin restricted permissions to exist in the game. Beta 4 and 5 allow Admin to join the game at a later stage. In beta 5, Admin can log into a single player game via the Terminal Server, which can be useful when running scripts. Mun has written a utility that allows admin privileges to be initially assigned to a player not called Admin – download it here, http://www.aqum35.dsl.pipex.com/hardwar/downloads.html .

Spitfire writes: “There’s a trick you can use to give your human pilot permanent admin permissions. Load up your SP [single-player] save game in the MP [multi-player] server, fire up Hardwar, create a new player called Admin and use the permissions-command to give your player all admin powers. Now, as the MP server saves the game, you can load that save in the SP game and continue playing like nothing happened.”

9.2.6 Can I script events and ‘bots? Can I redesign the game world?

In theory yes. Any command lines that may be typed into the TI (Terminal Interface) may be scripted. There are two methods.

  1. Add lines to worldinit.txt, which are run when the game starts. This seems to be restricted by a bug to 200 lines, over which it will crash at startup (although your mileage may vary). (Comments can be added here, by starting lines with “// “.)
  2. Send lines or text files, or run ‘bots via the TS (Terminal Server).

Imagine you are the admin typing commands. Each line in the script is like typing a new command. If you want to do something at a particular location, you must first TELEPORT to it as one command, then do things there on subsequent lines. At the time SR suggested third party utilities like ZMud ( http://www.zuggsoft.com/ ) might be used, although the list of programming possibilities here is almost unlimited. Unfortunately, key commands are missing from the betas, which currently limit the usefulness of such scripting.

When sending text files as scripts you need to setup the telnet client (or similar) to put a delay in between sending lines of a few hundred milliseconds, since the Hardwar server needs time to process the command and send back a confirmation before receiving the next command. Sending with no delay, even to a Hardwar server on the same machine, normally fails. Also, ensure you are running scripts from a character with the appropriate PERMISSIONS – I’d strongly advise running scripts as the Admin. Lastly, before running scripts that involve TELEPORTing, make sure you are not in a moth – placing OUT at the top of such a script will achieve this. Also see How do I build rooms? below.

This works well in single player mode with beta 4 and 5, it just seems to take a little longer for the Hardwar client to respond to commands than it does when acting as a server. With beta 3, the player has to be called Admin in order for admin privileges to exist in the game. Once the game has started, get the player out of the moth and onto foot. Then log into the terminal server as Admin, using the password “admin”. The terminal screen may lag a little behind for a while, but should work again after you’ve typed in a few random commands. In beta 4 and 5, the admin can log on after a non-admin player character has started the game.

9.2.7 How do I build rooms?

Beta 3+, rooms can be built by the Admin using the BUILD command. Typically scripts start with an OUT command (to ensure you are on foot), followed by a TELEPORT command, to take you to an existing hangar. Room building scripts then build OUT from the starting hangar to create a new room. The next command typically moves the admin into that room. From there they can describe the room, or create other rooms or walk routes. For example, you will see this quite a lot:

build n,Some Place -- builds Some Place to the north
n -- moves north, to Some Place
describe This is SOME place. -- adds description to Some Place

The important thing to note is that you aren’t moved to the newly created location automatically. Once “Some Place” is created, you can TELEPORT back to it. Ensure all places you might want to TELEPORT back to have unique sounding names. Not all rooms need to be uniquely named, just those that you need to refer back to later in the script. Subsequent rooms may be added using compass points or “u”/”d” to go up or down. When trying to enter an existing building from a custom room, BUILD HLINK,[hangar name] is used. Note that you must have at least two rooms between each existing hangar. I am not aware of any way to ‘un-build’ a room without starting a new game. Further notes on scripting can be found here, http://www.capsu.org/hardwar/scripts/ , along with a sample script to create rooms and links around Reservoir crater.

9.2.8 How do I get market/economy information?

Beta 5 introduces several commands that make understanding the economy relatively easy. Use SALEFIND, PURCHASEFIND, MANFIND, PRODUCEINFO and PRICEINFO (see What terminal commands are there? for details). Note that these are restricted by the PERMISSION ‘e’.

9.2.9 What are framesy, newmothsw, and similar?

These refer to moths that are under construction or ready for sale. The final two characters relate to the moth type – sy for Silver Y, mm for Moon Moth, nt for Neo Tiger, hk for Hawk, dh for Deaths Head, pl for Police and sw for Swallow. The frame part is a component part required to build a moth. The newmoth part is a finished moth awaiting sale.

9.2.10 How are items cited in the economy commands?

Commands such as MANFIND, use the name of the item without spaces in lowercase, so an Engine 1, becomes simply engine1. Manufacturing machinery is referred to as manweapons, mancomp, manoreproc, manbooze and mannarcotics. Moths are described above under What are framesy, newmothsw, and similar?.

9.3 Setup

9.3.1 What does the Persistent Game option do?

From Software Refinery’s notes: “This option is intended to be enabled when you are running a long-term persistent network game. Currently, not much changes when it is enabled. The main difference is that the startup options change, so that new players cannot come into the world highly equipped. The cheats allowing specially equipped moths (‘scunthorpe’ etc), are also disabled.”

9.3.2 What is Phil’s Ending?

This is now an option on the launcher’s Misc tab. It was available in earlier versions by editing the registry key HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Refinery\hardman\Config\PhilsEnding. The option means that every ship on Titan tries to attack you during the final plot run.

9.3.3 What’s the difference between high and low speed links?

Later betas, when connecting to online games you will have a choice between high and low speed links. High speed removes the frame rate clamp, and corrects many graphical oddities, like half-open hangar doors. High speed is suited internal networks, and possibly broadband internet. Low speed is suited to 56k modem and similar.

9.3.4 Can I unpatch U3 betas? Do I have to patch each of them one at a time?

You can revert to an older version by applying the patch for that version. For example, applying the U3 beta 4 patch to a beta 5 installation will change it to beta 4. Before applying any U3 beta patches it is recommended that you patch to U2.04, simply because the U3 betas do not include moth skin files. There is no need to apply patches sequentially – you can patch straight from U2.04 to U3 beta 5 if you wish. Save games from one version may not be valid in another, and any fan-made patches or fixes will need to be re-applied. Mun’s version switcher can be used to rapidly change version. It can be downloaded here, http://www.aqum35.dsl.pipex.com/hardwar/downloads.html .

9.4 Gameplay

9.4.1 How do I manufacture things?

You will need your own hangar in which to install manufacturing equipment. You then need to buy the appropriate machinery from Central Industrial. Five types of machinery are available (so only certain aspects of the economy can currently be taken in-house): Munitions (missiles and similar – not guns), Components (MachParts, CompComp, drones and cells), Ore (Sheet Metal and ExMetal), Distiller (alcohol) and Narcotron (Narcotics). You may need to supply Central Industrial quite heavily before the desired machinery appears for sale: They don’t produce in volume, particularly early in the game. You then take the machinery to your hangar and install it (note installation must be done from your pod, not your stock). Now under Owner Controls – Stock – Manufacture, you’ll be able to set a production level. Next feed the appropriate raw materials onto your hangar market – see the Non-Moth Production Requirements and Locations Table appendix for details. Either deliver them yourself, or set the purchasing options to attract other traders to deliver them (but see Why don’t AI pilots sell to my hangar? below – it can only be made to work in beta 5). When the raw materials are available, items will slowly be manufactured. When setting purchasing options, the default increment values may be annoyingly small – this can be hacked using Max’s Xup patch – see Are there any patches for the U3 betas? What is Hardwar E? below.

9.4.2 Why doesn’t Central Industrial make a Narcotron?

It will eventually. Unfortunately, it will make at least three of every other type of machinery first. You will need to supply it very heavily, and probably buy several other items of machinery to prevent it running out of cash.

9.4.3 How do I find and hire staff?

You need to be on foot in the same location as unhired staff. Unhired staff are revealed by LOOKing at the location – they typically use 6 letter names, and will be standing around (not in moths). Try trading posts, conurbations and similar housing, Hardwarp FM or Flyers Retreat. Once you have found an unhired “thug”, type RECRUIT [name] in the terminal to hire them. Each hiring costs you $1000. Once you have hired staff you can start ORDERing them about. Note that every staff member comes with $10,000 cash by default, so if you want easy cash, hire all the staff you can find, and have them DEPOSIT their cash in your hangar. There is a fixed number of thugs in each game.

9.4.4 Can I give staff multiple orders?

No. It would be useful if staff could be given several orders at once, for example, fly to one hangar, buy something, fly to another hangar, and sell. Staff ordering was never fully implemented, and consequently a lot of logical features relating to them are missing.

9.4.5 If I can order my staff to sell, why can’t I order them to buy?

The ‘buy’ feature was never implemented as an order. Two_steping writes: “You basically have your guys fly to a hangar that you are going to buy from, tell them to get out and then you get in and do the buying for your self. Then have them get back in and then tell them to fly wherever you want them to sell all.”

9.4.6 How do I walk around?

In every hangar you can get out of your moth using OUT. Beta 3 and later, in a few hangars you will then be given further options to walk around. Use LOOK to look around and movement commands to move – N/NE/E/SE/S/SW/W/NW, IN (enter a hangar), OUT (leave a hangar or moth), U (up a level), D (down a level). There are no visuals, only text. The experience can feel very MUD-like. Known walk routes are Alpha Trading Post – Alpha Construction – Craven Components – Flight Academy; and Trade Central – Software Shack 2/Sentinel 1/Vacant 0037/Psycho Bobs 2 – Downtown Estates. Others may be created – see How do I build rooms? above.

9.4.7 What are Air Filters, Pleasure Cubes, and Servant Droids, and where can I get them?

These seem to be items that were never released, but are still lurking in the game’s code. Like Death Rays (see How do I get a Death Ray? above) they can’t be purchased in the game. They appear on PRICEINFO lists, and in your hangar’s purchasing/sales menus.

9.4.8 How do I get Fumblers, Disablers and Blasters?

Beta 5 only. They are produced by Smart Weapons Corp, when appropriately supplied. Blasters can be used to damage buildings. The repair functions were never completed, but appear to involve a Builder’s moth flying to your hangar and conducting repairs. However, if you don’t pay them their moth becomes trapped in your hangar.

9.4.9 Where did the Debriefing Zone/Vacant 0006/0007/0008/0038 go?

Vacant 0006 became Shears Yard, a pod and engine production facility. The Debriefing Zone was first replaced by Central Industrial. In beta 5, the Debriefing Zone was re-introduced in the hangar formerly occupied by Vacant 0007. Vacant 0038 became the Smart Weapons Corp, a manufacturer of new weapon types. In beta 5, Vacant 0008 was removed for some form of internal testing – the hangar itself can be reintroduced using CREATE (see What terminal commands are there? above), but not as a purchasable hangar.

9.4.10 Who is Brother Kahuna?

In beta 5, Brother Kahuna will launch from the Monastery, fit Blasters, and then head towards General Industrial and attack it. It seems he does not approve of Narcotics production πŸ˜‰ . This is one of those wonderful little details that was only partly implemented within beta 5.

9.5 Bugs and Modifications

9.5.1 Are there any patches for the U3 betas? What is Hardwar E?

The later betas generally fixed graphical problems and common crashes related to the use of the Terminal Interface. They also improve online performance. Beta 5, in particular, introduced a lot of new features, many of which were very buggy. Overall, the later betas are the most stable, but still have fundamental problems.

Fortunately several dedicated fans have picked up where the Software Refinery left off. Max initially produced patches which attempted to address some of the worst issues in beta 4 and 5. A compendium of Max’s patches is available at http://www.hardwar.info/download.htm (in particular, look for max030610.zip). This includes:

  • Fix for joystick throttles.
  • Fix to allow beta 5 games to be reloaded.
  • Partial fix for the beta 5 economy.

Some of Max’s patches must be setup using command line parameters. If you are likely to need to apply the patch frequently (for example, if you wish to switch between different upgrade versions), consider writing a small batch (.bat) file.

During the later half of 2003, various patches were developed for the game. These variously fixed problems or tweaked existing features. To avoid downloading and applying patches separately, Hardwar E (Enhanced) was developed. Hardwar E contains both beta 5 fixes and changes to gameplay, most notably an enhanced economy. Hardwar E can be found here – http://www.downloads.hardwar.info/ and http://smurphsworld.150m.com/ . Note that Hardwar E is still in development – it has known bugs and issues of its own. Hardwar E subsequently evolved into UIM Enhanced – see What is UIM Enhanced? below.

The ultimate patch for U3 is now Upgrade IM – see below.

9.5.2 How can I stop beta 5 games crashing after reloading?

Don’t save them πŸ˜‰ . This was a viable solution for some server/network based games, but was not ideal. The problem related to the occurrence of an error called “FixBgID”, which would appear in log files shortly after the start of a game, and lead to savegame files being incorrectly read upon reloading. Max writes: “Pilot data was being loaded out of sync (for pilots in hangars). Eventually some function would receive an index pointing outside its address space and crash. The patch basically uses beta4 data to keep ‘beta5 FixBgID’ in sync.” Max’s patch fixes this – see Are there any patches for the U3 betas? What is Hardwar E? above.

9.5.3 I logged a beta 5 game and I’m running out of disk space. Why?

U3 beta 5 games create a lot of errors, the most infamous of which are “[pilot] had invalid GoCrater target” (AI pilot forgot what they were doing) and “[pilot] didn’t find enough goods. Reducing requirement” (AI pilot expected to buy 10,000+ of something, and will reduce requirements one at a time until the 3 available for sale are found). In essence, large chunks of the software are continually logging errors, which will create half a MegaByte of extra log each minute. A full log can ultimately exhaust your machine’s hard drive capacity and crash it. The easiest solution is to disable logging on the Misc tab. If you do genuinely want to read some of the error messages, try Doc Beeblebrox’s Downtown Log Processing utility, which removes the most common rubbish, allowing more unusual errors to be found. It is available here: http://zedo.hardwar.org.uk/logproc.zip .

9.5.4 Why won’t my joystick throttle work?

U3 beta 3 and 4 support non-USB joystick throttles, beta 5 supports USB joystick throttles. Only U3 betas 1 and 2 support both. Max has produced a patch to fix this – see Are there any patches for the U3 betas? What is Hardwar E? above.

9.5.5 What is wrong with the beta 5 economy?

Beta 5 attempted to introduce a new economy that placed far greater emphasis on demand and supply – inflating prices when items were in shortage. The function of trading posts as middlemen was removed (I believe Software Refinery were testing some alternative trading post code using Vacant 0008 – see Where did the Debriefing Zone/Vacant 0006/0007/0008/0038 go? above), including the needs list (which tend just to show a demand for food). Unfortunately, the economy started empty, and initial shortages inflated prices; so much so that some prices ‘wrapped’ and became negatives. AI pilots did not respond well to this change. Initially they chased after the most profitable item, leading to certain goods becoming over-stocked. Once over-stocked, businesses stopped buying. With no trading posts to dump unwanted goods, AI pilots got stuck with unwanted cargo nobody could buy. The least profitable items, such as Sheet Metal, are also the most important for production. Consequently businesses were unable to produce much early in the game, because all the AI traders were trying to satisfy 1 unit demands for Gems, rather than 50 unit demands for Sheet Metal. (The AI sought to maximise profit per unit, rather than overall profit per trip.) This was complicated further by the AI attempting to make unrealistic purchases (trying to buy thousands of one good, with several minutes of extra processing before anything was actually purchased), and the AI forgetting what they were planning to do.

In essence, the beta 5 economy is a complete mess after a few days. I wrote some scripts which stabilised the economy by placing draconian restrictions on businesses during the first 30 days of play – see http://www.capsu.org/hardwar/scripts/ . Max produced a patch to force AI pilots to buy goods immediately, and cap prices to prevent negatives appearing – see Are there any patches for the U3 betas? What is Hardwar E? above. The patch is appropriate for use in all games. Neither of these are perfect solutions, but they should make the game playable. Firefox and Smurph modified the original economy script to run alongside Max’s patch – a version of this script is available from the previous URL. There are many pricing and production oddities in the beta 5 economy, some of which can be corrected by scripting (either via the Terminal Server or by placing lines in worldinit.txt). For example, Wez suggests these additions to get General Industrial buying water:

teleport general industrial
hangar stock,water,maxbuy,25
hangar stock,water,buy,340

Further enhancements to the economy are being developed as part of Hardwar E – see Are there any patches for the U3 betas? What is Hardwar E? above.

9.5.6 Why won’t Downtown Moths sell moths? Why won’t Shears Yard fit pods?

In beta 5, add to the top of worldinit.txt (may require lines to be placed immediately below the first commented (//…) section for some reason, also take care not to leave trailing spaces in) or execute as Admin, these lines:

teleport downtown moths
hangar software,spm
teleport shears yard
hangar software,fr

9.5.7 How can I get my staff out of limbo?

This may happen when they die. It may be possible to extract them, but it is very easy to accidentally crash the game in the attempt (this varies by beta version). With Admin permissions, TELEPORT to limbo!, then BUILD a link out to another location (see How do I build rooms? above), then ORDER them to walk out along the path created (from Wez). Note that in some versions, your dead character can be resurrected in a similar way if logging in via the Terminal Server. In some beta games (notably beta 4), TELEPORTing to limbo! via the Terminal Interface may crash the game – use God Hangar to get there instead and then access the Terminal Interface to build a path out. In beta 4 it is possible to build a link out of limbo!, but care must be taken or the game will crash, as Violet sky writes: “Do not:

  • give the look command while in the limbo, either as yourself or as a thug, or the game will crash.
  • go back in the limbo (typing “in” while in limboout [a room just outside limbo!]) either as yourself or as a thug, or the game will crash.
  • go in directions you aren’t supposed to go, or the game may or may not crash.”

9.5.8 Are my thugs supposed to do _that_?

Hired staff occasionally do some interesting things. They are prone to most of the same glitches associated with regular AI pilots – notably getting stuck in odd locations. They may be freed again by using the THRUST commands, but sometimes you physically need to fly out and bump them. When used in combat they tend to get involved in friendly fire incidents, which can make you new enemies. Your employees can also end up fighting one another, as Wez comments: “Don’t order 2 thugs to kill the same target… most likely they’ll wind up hitting each other and then turning on each other. I find it best to order one thug to kill a target: If it gets into a losing situation, I fire a few careful shots at the target myself to give my thug a little assistance.” Thugs can hijack moths (without specifically having the hijack PERMISSION) – for example boarding new moths at Downtown Moths. Moths hijacked in this way can only be piloted by your thugs. Lucifer writes: “Running beta 4, get a thug in a moon moth’s passenger seat, and no-one should attack you. You’ll still be targeted, CPU pilots will still fly as if they were attacking, but they won’t fire a single shot.”

9.5.9 Why don’t custom hangar names display?

They should work in beta 5. In beta 4 the name affects ORDERs, but does not display visually outside the hangar.

9.5.10 Why don’t AI pilots sell to my hangar?

You can only get AI pilots to sell goods to your hangar in beta 5 – this feature does not work in beta 4. In beta 5, you must issue the command “hangar software,p” as Admin. Max’s economy patch also fixes this. Wez adds: “Also you need to set your purchase price higher than your competitors or you’ll only get deliveries if they stop buying.”

9.5.11 There is a stack of AI moths waiting to enter a hangar. How can I get rid of them?

This quirk is particularly common in beta 4, although has been observed in other beta versions. It is possible for almost all the AI moths to become stuck in a queue for a hangar.

Spitfire writes: “If moths start to stack outside any hangar, you should first try to ram the first ship off the queue, so that he’ll try to enter the queue again. Sometimes doing this the whole queue starts moving and the next waiting moth will enter the hangar normally. … You must stay there and wait for the next moth to enter and kill it at the instant it gets stuck. Hang there until the first moth successfully enters the hangar. … But if nothing happens after several tries, this approach will not work: even if you destroy the first moth on the line, the rest of the queue still remains stuck.” Check that no moth is stuck inside the hangar airlock. If it is, when the doors open push the moth fully inside so that the doors shut and the moth in the airlock is destroyed. Sometimes AI moths simply become stuck in the airlock doors, but not ‘stuck enough’ for the weaponry inside the airlock to destroy them.

Spitfire continues: “There is one option which has worked for me 100% of the cases: Load up devastators (as many as there are moths in the queue) and start destroying the queue one moth at the time. You will have to clear up the whole queue in order to get queuing working again – if another moth enters the queue while you are destroying the moths, you will have to kill that one too. When the whole queue is clear of moths, new moths coming in should be able to enter the hangar normally. If not, continue destroying them as long as a moth is able to enter successfully. It will happen eventually.”

From smurph: “Use the debug keys (F11, F12) to look for a pilot that is stuck somewhere in titan that has current orders to go to Downtown Moths and sell cargo. When you find him either go and kill him, or if you have admin permissions simply clear his orders.” Ouch comments: “Unfortunately Downtown Moths needs your business to survive as no factions seem to want to buy from it because it’s too far away from them. … If you see that they are trying to sell stuff, but the hangar doesn’t seem to let them, then the hangar is probably out of money.” Money can be edited into the hangar, or you can TELEPORT there and buy some moths yourself.

Smurph, citing Max: “The other major cause of queues is stuck moths. Say pilot A decides to go hangar B, and then gets stuck onto the crater wall or something, all pilots that subsequently decide to go to building B will form an orderly queue, patiently waiting for pilot A to get there and dock. Even though pilot A has not got a queue at order, it will be listed in the hangar index as first in the queue. Action – kill pilot A or clear pilot A’s orders or use some code or misopians to shuffle the queue order around. HardwarE currently has some code that shuffles any big queues around and seems to do the trick except in rare occasions where the stuck moth is trapped on the doors of hangar B, itself.”

9.5.12 Why do AI pilots get stuck in the Alpha-Downtown tunnel?

The ‘nodes’ used to determine the flight paths seem to have been mixed up in some of the later betas. This causes AI pilots to start heading down the tunnel in one direction, then decide it will be quicker to go the other way, return and decide the opposite, and so on. This problem can be fixed by editing hardwar.wld, and swapping the following hangars: EGG6 — AAE5 (midway pirate and mines air purifier in mines); EGG5 — AAHK (midway pirate and prison oubliette); EGG5 — AA1L (midway pirate and alpha air purifier); EGG3 — AA1Q (shanty inn and flight academy). Mun’s Building Swapping Util can be used to swap buildings about (see http://www.aqum35.dsl.pipex.com/hardwar/downloads.html ). Wez has produced a replacement hardwar.wld which does this – simply place it in the main hardwar directory. It is contained in hardwarseasawfix.zip (see http://www.downloads.hardwar.info/ ).

9.5.13 Can faction moths be made to respawn?

Yes. Issue the command “hangar software,cd” at both Lazarus and Klamp-G moth factories (from smurph). Collect (c) and Deliver (d) should allow cabs to start ferrying pilots to moth factories, where they board new moths, launch, and start fighting.

9.5.14 Why won’t the plot advance? How do I get Trigger, Matter or Fusion Parts?

In some of the earlier betas minor plot related problems were created by the removal of the Debriefing Zone (which is where many plot related moths go after their plot events – certain plot moths may get stuck with orders “GoBg Limbo!” – just ignore them).

In beta 5, alien-related goods (Trigger, Matter, Fusion Parts) do not appear. There are no gang transports, hence no trading with the aliens, hence no Trigger, Matter or Fusion Parts. Smurph writes: “In beta 5 when a gang transport is killed the gang HQ spawns a trader. In my test log ‘Darius Sith replaces Skinner Trans 00’. So no more gang transports after the first two are killed… Even if you plot jump a beta 5 game to attacks, where the transports should be doing their bodyparts thing, the gang transports still act like regular traders.” Setting the Research Facility to allow purchases does not work, so you cannot replace the gang transport directly yourself. This makes it impossible to advance beyond the mid-part of the plot without hacking.

There are solutions to this problem: Use Wez’s Beta Hangar Editor (see Are there any editors or Software Development Kits for Hardwar? above) to add Trigger/Matter/Fusion Parts to your hangar. An alternative hack is offered by smurph (don’t try this unless you are confident about hex editing): “This one allows you to unload bodyparts in a hanger that you own and get them immediately converted to matter, trigger and fusion parts. Open up a hangar that you own, or any purchasable hanger with a hex editor – you will see something like this (this is for downtown 05)”:

44 6f 77 6e 74 6f 77 6e 20 30 35 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 10 1c 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 12 00 00 00 01 00 00 00 78 bc d5 02 01 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00

Change it to:

44 6f 77 6e 74 6f 77 6e 20 30 35 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 10 1c 00 00 *0d* 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 12 00 00 00 01 00 00 00 78 bc d5 02 01 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00 00

Another option is to restart using Max’s Dealer mod, which creates an alternative Dealer startup career (available from http://www.downloads.hardwar.info/ ). It is a hard start, but will give you access to alien-related goods.

9.5.15 Can I remove the beta 4/5 negative deposit cheat?

This bug allows negative amounts to be deposited at a hangar, thus creating credits (from Wez). Max’s Economy patch fixes this for beta 5 – see Are there any patches for the U3 betas? What is Hardwar E? above. A fix is also available as a separate file for beta 4 – download 304DepositStop.exe from http://www.downloads.hardwar.info/ .

9.5.16 I am experiencing video related crashes. Any hints?

Later beta versions tend to solve many of the early graphics-related glitches and crashes. 3DFX Voodoo 4/5 support may be broken in all versions, as Lyx comments: “On betas 1 and 2 an error window pops up: ‘TPage failed to fit a sprite’. Also, Hardman detects different drivers on the (working) 2.04 version than the U3-betas: In 2.04 you can even choose between ‘Glide 2’ or ‘Glide 3’-Support… in the U3-betas there just one ‘3dfx glide’-driver.” Software rendering is buggy in places, notably when accessing the navigation screen. Switching to Direct 3D mode may solve this issue. Another fix worth trying is to set your desktop resolution/size to that of the game.

9.5.17 Can I change the password?

Download and use Mun’s password changer, available from http://www.downloads.hardwar.info/ and http://www.aqum35.dsl.pipex.com/hardwar/downloads.html . This only allows passwords to be changed, not recovered when they are forgotten.

9.5.18 What should I _not_ do in a U3 beta 4 online game?

Here is Lord_Solarix’s list of actions guaranteed to crash a U3 beta 4 server (slightly abridged). This complements Is there an online etiquette? Can I kill other players? above. Do not:

  • Click rapidly on ANY onscreen buttons, when using in-game menu screens such as Navigation screen scroll buttons, Messages (reading them AND deleting them), Hangar management, Enemies Lists, selling or buying cargo, Trading Posts’ Needs and Sales Lists… the list goes on.
  • Cab Pilots: Do not kill them. [Taxis do not re-spawn, but certain aspects of the game rely on them.]
  • Issue ORDERs to dead hired thugs.
  • Use the EXEC command on your dead hired thugs.
  • Target someone with the TI Interface while simultaneously viewing your Navigation Screen.
  • Set Sales System ON in your hangar full of booty… but your Hangar Access to Private. [Traps AI pilots in a queue outside your hangar.]
  • Set Sales System ON in your hangar full of booty, then selling your hangar to the nearest Estates Agent. [As above, but worse because the hangar may not be possible to purchase immediately.]”

9.5.19 Why don’t construction companies/builders work?

Ouch writes: “The entire construction loop is messed up. If you nuke a building it gets repaired to 2048 damage and stays there. This means the construction pilots never stop delivering constmat to the damaged hangar. On top of that the pilots never stock the construction companies they work for.”

9.5.20 Why can I overload my pod with my own production?

TheSpaceMan writes: “If you produce your own stuff [in your hangar], you can load the cargo with no limit at all.” This allows very large profit to be made quickly…

Index: Hardwar FAQ Β·