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     FREQUENTLY       ASKED         QUESTIONS        LIST        PART 1
=-=-=
Unofficial Mechwarrior II FAQ

   Part 1 (of 2): What is the game like???

compiled by Will Day 
Version 2.0  8/9/95

This is a Frequently Asked Questions list compiled for the new
game _Mechwarrior II_ from Activision.  We were lucky to have 
several members of the MW2 programming team posting to the newsgroups 
and answering questions, so many of the answers you see here come 
directly from them.

The FAQ is split into two parts:
    Part 1: a re-hash of the Pre-release FAQ, providing mostly 
            descriptions of the game.  This would be most useful for
            those who haven't bought the game yet, and want to know
            "What is it like???"
    Part 2: addresses specific topics relating to playing the game,
            like cheats, bugs, and general questions of the type "How
            do I do _this_ in the game???"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Revision history

2.0  8/9/95
     - Reorganized Pre-release version into a Post-release version, 
       split into two parts

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Table of Contents

Section 1: Basic Information
1.1 Can you give me a brief description of the game?
1.2 Is the game Clan vs. Clan, or Clan vs Inner Sphere?
1.3 Is the game released on floppies or CD?
1.4 What are the minimum requirements?
1.5 Is the game out yet?  Is it delayed again?
1.6 How much does the game cost?
1.7 How linear is the plot-line in the game?  Is it replayable?
1.8 How many missions are there?
1.9 How much disk space is required?
1.10 Is there a difficulty setting?
1.11 How close is it to FASA's boardgame?
1.12 How big is the manual?
1.13 How much BattleTech historial background is covered in the game?

Section 2: Simulation Details
2.1 What mechs are in the game?
2.2 What weapons do the mechs have?
2.3 Is heat an element in the game?
2.4 Are there jumpjets?
2.5 How is damage taken on my mech?
2.6 Is there indirect fire?
2.7 Is there CASE or MASC?
2.8 Are the Clans' Rules of Engagement (ROE) followed in the game?
2.9 Can I design my own mechs?
2.10 Can I design my own missions?
2.11 Can I torso-twist?
2.12 Does the torso tilt up/down?
2.13 How are the controls set up?
2.14 Is there a damage indicator for enemy mechs?
2.15 Why is there no cockpit shown in the screen shots?
2.16 Can I target and shoot off specific parts of enemy mechs?
2.17 Are Clan targetting computers implemented?
2.18 Is physical combat (DFA, punch, kick) allowed?
2.19 Is there multiplayer support?
2.20 Do I fight missions alone or in a team?
2.21 Is there a VCR recorder/playback feature?
2.22 What features had to be left out of the game?
2.23 Do missile spreads appear as one or many missiles?
2.24 How is fire-control handled?
2.25 Pulse Lasers!  Do I get to-hit modifiers?
2.26 What happens when I eject?
2.27 How fast is the action?

Section 3: Hardware Support
3.1 What sound cards will the game support?
3.2 What kind of joysticks does it support?
3.3 What about 3-D headsets?
3.4 Will MW2 support any of the graphics accelerator cards?
3.5 What speed modem is required?

Section 4: World Elements
4.1 Are there ?
4.2 I heard there were bridges; is that true?
4.3 What kind of terrain is in the game?
4.4 Can I get on the hills and mountains like I could in MW 1?
4.5 Can I cool my mech off in water?
4.6 Is there fire and smoke in the game?
4.7 All these vehicles are nice, but can we drive 'em?

Section 5: Graphics
5.1 What resolutions does the game support?
5.2 What resolution will I be able to reasonably use?
5.3 What kind of graphics does it use?  Is there texture mapping?
5.4 How do the detail of the 'mechs compare to Earthsiege?
5.5 Are the quicktime movies on the web site intro or sim footage?
5.6 Why are the movies not simulator footage?
5.7 Can I reduce the screen-size to improve frame rate?

Section 6: Extras
6.1 Are there cheat codes we can use in the game?
6.2 Will there be a demo/shareware version?
6.3 How big will the demo be?
6.4 What add-ons are planned?
6.5 Will Activision be doing a future Mechwarrior game?
6.6 I'm a CLANNER!  I want to invade the Inner Sphere!

Section 7: Operating Systems
7.1 Does MW2 run under Windows 95?
7.2 Does MW2 run under OS/2?
7.3 Will there be a  port of the game?
7.4 Will there be an upgrade path from the DOS version to Win95/NT?
7.5 Any plans for MW2 on Sony's Playstation?

Section 8: Inside Info
8.1 What machines/configurarations were used for testing?
8.2 What programming platforms did you use to write the game?
8.3 How does MW2 compare to Virtual Worlds' BattleTech Centers?
8.4 What's taken so long?

Section 9: Miscellaneous
9.1 Where can I read about MW2 in the magazine press?
9.2 Can I be a beta tester?
9.3 How do I get a job at Activision as president, CEO, and supreme ruler?
9.4 What about a MW2 movie?

Section 10: Net References
10.1 What Activision people involved with Mechwarrior are on the net?
10.2 Where do Activision-Mechwarrior people usually read and/or post?
10.3 On what ftp sites can I find Mechwarrior II info?
10.4 What web pages are there about Mechwarrior II?

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 1: Basic Information

1.1 Can you give me a brief description of the game?

  From: madcat@cybernetx.net (Phelan Wolf)
  Date: Mon, 19 Jun 95 01:53:15 EDT

   [From promotional material sent to retailers:]
   "At the beginning of Mechwarrior II, a player can choose to join one
   of two Clans, the Wolf Clan or the Jade Falcon Clan.  Featuring
   approximately 50 distinct missions, the game allows the player to
   experience different battle sequences depending upon his choice of
   Clan.  After joining a Clan, the player is transported via full-screen,
   full-motion video sequences to the Clan Hall where he learns about
   the history of his Clan, receives his briefing, debriefing and training
   instructions, custom configures his Mech squadron and custom arms
   his BattleMech.  After receiving his orders, he begins his career as a
   Mechwarrior."

  From: http://www.activision.com/mech/home.html
  Date: now

   The year is 3057. The Clans have suffered a dishonorable defeat
   against the combined forces of the Inner Sphere during the Battle 
   of Tukayyid. The Clans reluctantly agree to honor a cease-fire treaty 
   that prohibits another invasion of Terran space for fifteen years. 
   Remaining true to their word, they retreat to their conquered worlds. 

   But their loss at Tukayyid has changed the Clans forever. Never
   again will they underestimate their Inner Sphere opponents, nor will 
   they look at each other in the same way.  They now blame each other 
   and begin infighting to regain their lost honor. The fierce fighting 
   leads to a series of inter clan battles and an aggressive race to gain 
   supremacy and become the most powerful Clan.

   Inside futuristic two-legged war machines called BattleMechs (R), 
   Clan MechWarriors (R) battle on the terrains of the Inner Sphere. Clan 
   members also compete in arena-style trials of combat to advance in rank
   and Mech weight class. Members of Clan Jade Falcon, the Crusaders,
   want to take Terra by force as is their right according to the 
   Remembrance. Clan Wolf, on the other hand, see things differently. They,
   representing the Warden view, want to protect Terra from the terrible 
   ravages of war. The coveted goal of a 'Mech (R) pilot is to become 
   Khan, or leader of the Clan, through excellence on the battlefield 
   and respect for tradition and honor. 

1.2 Is the game Clan vs. Clan, or Clan vs Inner Sphere?

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 12 Jun 1995 19:35:30 GMT

   The storyline is exclusively clan vs. clan, in the post-invasion
   period.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   The game is based on the Trial of Refusal between Clan Wolf and 
   Clan Jade Falcon, as depicted in the novel "Bred for War" by
   Michael Stackpole.  You can choose to fight on either side.

1.3 Is the game released on floppies or CD?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 23 Jun 1995 19:55:12 GMT

   CD only.

1.4 What are the minimum requirements?

  From: Josh Resnick (jresnick@activision.com) via AOL
        posted by jtilocca@nyc.pipeline.com (John Tilocca)
  Date: 20 May 1995 16:40:09 -0400

   The min. config will be a 486 66, 8MB RAM, 2xsped cd rom, SB16
   or compatible, local bus video, and 25MB HD space available.
   Believe me, we would love to lower the threshold, but in order to 
   enjoy the game to its fullest, we want you to be able to have lots 
   of the bells and whistles, including, most importantly, a decent 
   frame rate.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   486-66, local bus video, 8MB RAM, 2X CD-ROM.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   The minimum system requirements as listed in the manual are:
    - IBM PC or 100% compatible
    - 486DX2/66 MHz processor
    - 8 MB RAM (7 MB of free extended memory)
    - Double-speed CD-ROM drive (300k/sec transfer rate)
    - Hard disk drive with 30MB of uncompress space available
    - VESA local bus (VLB) or PCI video
    - 256 color SVGA (640x480)
    - MS-DOS 6.0
    - 100% Microsoft-compatible mouse and driver
    - 100% Sound Blaster-compatible sound card
      (digital and FM/MIDI audio)
    - Dedicated game card highly recommended for joysticks

1.5 Is the game out yet?  Is it delayed again?

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   The game shipped from Activision's manufacturing plant on Monday, 
   July 24, and began showing up in stores the next day.

1.6 How much does the game cost?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   Suggested retail price is $59.95.

1.7 How linear is the plot-line in the game?  Is it replayable?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 22:59:34 GMT

   Each missions in MechWarrior II does have a plot that is conveyed 
   in its briefing.  Some, but not all, are limited by time.  
   Stratgegy plays a major part in how long the missions take to get 
   through.  If you only pursue your manditory objectives, and run from 
   all mechs that attack you, you can probably get through quickly.  
   Of course your honor points wouldn't be very high...

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 26 Jun 1995 06:21:27 GMT

   There is a carreer mode and an instant action mode.  In carreer
   mode, you gain rank as you progress through missions, and after
   finishing the missions from the point of view of one clan, you
   can go back and play through a whole new set of missions as a
   member of the opposing clan.

   In instant action mode, you just play on a mission by mission
   basis; no rank, no carreer.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 29 Jun 1995 08:38:11 GMT

   The career missions for each clan are linear.  The battle
   progresses regardless of the performance of one MechWarrior...
   (although you wouldn't know it if you are defeated ).

   [Also, you can't choose your missions], they're assigned to you.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 22:20:37 GMT

   In MechWarrior II, there are two ways to play the game.  The
   first is as a member of one of two clans: Jade Falcon or Wolf.
   In this mode, you are assigned missions and progress through a
   carreer path.  Each mission will probably require more than one
   try to succeed.

   Once you have succeeded in one clan, you can go back and play
   through a career in the other (they have completely different
   mission sets).

   There is also an instant action screen that allows you to
   choose from a pool of missions and play at your leisure (sounds
   like this might be more what you're looking for).

   I hope this sounds like it might have some replayability, but
   if you have some suggestions of how to improve the
   replayability in addition to these things, definitely send me
   some e-mail.

   We'd very much like to create a game that keeps you interested.

1.8 How many missions are there?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   Between the carreer missions and the Instant Action missions,
   there are nearly sixty.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 23:10:55 GMT

   58 single player missions, 10-15 head-to-head missions

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   There are 6 training missions, about 16 missions in each clan
   career, ten different terrains for Instant Action missions,
   and 3 terrains for head-to-head play.

1.9 How much disk space is required?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 28 Jun 1995 01:58:38 GMT

   Much of the game uses resources on the CD, but we do copy a
   large resource file to your hard drive.  We expect this to
   consume over 30MB of hard disk space.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   The game offers three sizes of hard-drive installs: 30mb (minimum),
   43 (recommended), 105 (full).

1.10 Is there a difficulty setting?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 1 Jul 1995 08:44:38 GMT

   MechWarrior II has difficulty levels (Easy, Medium, Hard) also.
   These allow you to progress through a carreer, wheras the
   cheats (invulnerability, no heat tracking, unlimited ammo) will
   prevent you from getting enough honor points to finish the
   game.

1.11 How close is it to FASA's boardgame?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 22:12:30 GMT

   We follow the BTech Compendium fairly closely.  The only
   discrepancies come from the inherent differences between a
   turn-based environment and a real-time simulator.

1.12 How big is the manual?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 4 Jul 1995 19:24:20 GMT

   The manual is currently weighing in at 63 pages.  It includes
   descriptions of the mech's system, specs for the mechs included
   in the game, and loads of information on how to pilot them.

1.13 How much BattleTech historial background is covered in the game?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 6 Jul 1995 03:49:01 GMT

   You can definitely play the game without knowing the
   background; it just adds to the experience if you're familiar
   with the universe.  There is a lot of background available in
   the Clan Archives, as well as from an optional button in the
   mission briefing/debriefing.

   MechWarrior II extends the story of the BattleTech universe
   past anything written previously, so it is interesting to know
   the significance of the infighting and the various alliances
   between clans.

   We don't give a huge history, but there is a lot of
   background about what it means to be in a clan and the honor
   codes, etc. that they follow.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 2: Simulation Details

2.1 What mechs are in the game?



  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 30 Jun 1995 17:09:14 GMT

   I am keeping alist of suggested mechs for the add-on.  Mechs
   that will be in the initial release are:

     DireWolf, Firemoth, Gargoyle, HellBringer, Jenner,
     KitFox, MadDog, Marauder, Nova, RifleMan, StormCrow,
     Summoner, TimberWolf, WarHammer, WarHawk

   We'll be soliciting more input on desired mechs and any other
   oversights after we get the first version out the door.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   Additionally, cheat codes allow the use of the BattleMaster,
   Tarantula, and Elemental in instant action play.

2.2 What weapons do the mechs have?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 23 Jun 1995 19:45:49 GMT

   ER PPC
   ER Laser (Large, Medium, Small)
   Pulse Laser (Large, Medium, Small)
   LB 2-X AC, LB 5-X AC, LB 10-X AC, LB 20-X AC
   Ultra AC/2, Ultra AC/5, Ultra AC/10, Ultra AC/20
   LRM5, LRM10, LRM15, LRM20
   SRM2, SRM4, SRM6
   Streak SRM2, Streak SRM4, Streak SRM6
   Machine Gun
   Gauss Rifle

2.3 Is heat an element in the game?

  From: Josh Resnick via email
        posted by eastham@dseg.ti.com
  Date: Date: 9 Jun 1995 18:11:17 GMT

   Heat is an important feature.  Heat will cause the mech to
   commence autoshutdown and could result in the explosion of 
   internal ammo.  Players will have the option of turning this 
   feature off, but at a price....

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 12 Jun 1995 19:45:27 GMT

   The heat system will automatically shutdown once a certain level
   has benn reached, although this can be overriddem.  There is a
   cumulative heat indicator as well as a dh/dt indicator in the
   HUD.

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 13 Jun 1995 03:29:22 GMT

   There is no difference in the calculation used for enemy mechs
   than the calculation we use for the player's mech.  They are
   equally succeptible to heat shut-down.

2.4 Are there jumpjets?

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 16 Apr 1995 01:15:41 GMT

   We're currently adding more controls for a jumping mech, so you can
   thrust left/right/forward/back. Also, the moment you leave the
   ground (via jump jets, stepping off a cliff, building, etc), a 
   small "Down View" window opens on your HUD.

  From: Josh Resnick via email
        posted by eastham@dseg.ti.com
  Date: Date: 9 Jun 1995 18:11:17 GMT

   Jump jets are quite versatile.  Jump jets can be used to initiate
   quick turns on the ground.  Players will be able to change their 
   flight path in mid air to "reverse", "sidestep" left and right, and 
   accelerate forward.  Players can also use jump jets to boost their 
   ground speed.

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 12 Jun 1995 19:45:27 GMT

   Jump jets are totally controllable in mid-air.  You can thrust in
   any direction once airborne.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 20 Jun 1995 04:28:48 GMT

   Jump jets are a major part of MechWarrior II.  You can shoot down at
   angles to the limit of where your targetting reticle reaches the
   edge of your display (no point in shooting if you can't see where you're
   aiming).

2.5 How is damage taken on my mech?

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 10 May 1995 18:04:40 GMT

   At this point, there is no falling down/getting up. Getting slammed
   by a lot of missiles will shake you up and spin you around, but
   you'll stay on your feet. Same with collisions. On that same line,
   if you get a leg blown off, it's game over. No hopping about like
   a Triffid. You can still lose both arms and keep fighting, tho
   (assuming you have weapons in your torso).

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 27 Jun 1995 05:17:09 GMT

   Your eyepoint gets jostled, but your mech does not physically
   get moved back (mechs have an awful lot of weight to hold them
   down).

2.6 Is there indirect fire?

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 12 Jun 1995 19:45:27 GMT

   I'm sorry to say indirect fire is not part of the game.

2.7 Is there CASE or MASC?

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 14 Jun 1995 02:25:00 GMT

   Don't worry, CASE has not been overlooked, nor has MASC.

2.8 Are the Clans' Rules of Engagement (ROE) followed in the game?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 26 Jun 1995 06:49:54 GMT

   Rules of Engagement were a topic of much debate during the
   design of MechWarrior II.  The enemy mechs do obey RoE in
   almost all cases.  As for the player, that's up to you .

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 23:25:02 GMT

   In almost all occasions, enemy mechs stick follow the honor
   code.  This is up to the designer of each mission, but for the
   most part you will find the enemies to follow RoE.

   

   Your honor points are cumulative.

2.9 Can I design my own mechs?

  From: Josh Resnick via email
        posted by eastham@dseg.ti.com
  Date: Date: 9 Jun 1995 18:11:17 GMT

   Players will be able to customize their Mechs in the Design Lab 
   before embarking on missions (ie., swapping engines, adding/subtacting 
   heat sinks, assigning armor/criticals, changing weapon types, etc.)

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 14 Jun 1995 02:25:00 GMT

   MechWarrior II's design plant conforms to the FASA guidelines,
   and does allow different engines and internal armor structure.
   Some of the more esoteric weaponry and equipment will not appear
   until the 'Missions & Technology' add-on disk is released later
   this year.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 20 Jun 1995 23:41:48 GMT

   There is a custom mech plant in the game that allows you to
   configure any of the chassis we've provided as per the rules of 
   the BattleTech compendium (FASA 1690).

  From: hullett@girtab.usc.edu (Aardvark Dreams)
  Date: 30 Jun 1995 05:40:13 -0700

   You can't build mechs from scratch, but you can fully customize the
   mechs in the game.  Pretty much everything is configurable: weapons, 
   armor, jumpjets, heat sinks, engines, etc.  Putting together the right 
   mech is going to be a matter of life in some of these missions!

2.10 Can I design my own missions?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   No.  We are considering making this a part of the 'Missions &
   Technology' add-on disk that will ship later this year.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 26 Jun 1995 06:28:08 GMT

   The main release won't have a level editor, but this is somthing 
   we're considering for the add-on.

2.11 Can I torso-twist?

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 18 Apr 1995 05:37:04 GMT

   Unfortunately, the torso turning in MW2 is limited to 90 degrees,
   same as the board game. I LOVED being able to turn 360 at the Virtual
   World simulators, but I was over-ruled. :(

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 20 Jun 1995 04:28:48 GMT

   Yes. MechWarrior II has 180 degrees of torso turn (not 360 though).
   We found this to be perfect for circular battles, while not as
   disorienting as letting you face backwards while walking forwards.
   You can of course walk in reverse if you want to shoot in one
   direction and walk in another.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 20 Jun 1995 10:32:37 GMT

   Yes.  You can turn 90 degrees in both directions off center.

2.12 Does the torso tilt up/down?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 20 Jun 1995 23:35:43 GMT

   MechWarrior II allows torso tilt in excess of 45 degrees up and
   down.

2.13 How are the controls set up?

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 18 Apr 1995 05:42:07 GMT

   Control systems are currently being completely reworked (this is
   a source of much heated debate on the Mech team). What we are
   trying to come up with is the optimal DEFAULT setup. Whatever we
   settle on, the controls will be about 95% configurable by the user.
   The biggest bone of contention seems to be the proper use of the
   joystick. Should it control your mech or your torso? Should your
   torso lead your turns? Should your targeting reticle be
   free-floating? These are all issues that we'll be settling in the
   next couple of weeks, now that we have a freely configurable
   version of the game to play. We'll all figure out what we like,
   and come up with a system.

2.14 Is there a damage indicator for enemy mechs?

  From: Josh Resnick via email
        posted by eastham@dseg.ti.com
  Date: Date: 9 Jun 1995 18:11:17 GMT

   In the game we have a display in which players can view targeted
   Mechs in either wireframe or texture mapped.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 20 Jun 1995 04:28:48 GMT

   Mech sections are blackened in real-time as they are damaged. Also,
   there is a small display window on the lower left that displays the
   currently targetted object in 3D wireframe (animating).  The
   wireframe is colored according to the damage of each piece.

2.15 Why is there no cockpit shown in the screen shots?

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 18 Jun 1995 23:18:36 GMT

   We upgraded to a fully virtual 3D cockpit.  It is no longer a 2D
   bitmap slapped on top of the screen image.

2.16 Can I target and shoot off specific parts of enemy mechs?

  From: Josh Resnick via email
        posted by eastham@dseg.ti.com
  Date: Date: 9 Jun 1995 18:11:17 GMT

   Arms, legs, head and torso can be individually targeted, but fatal
   blows to any part other than the arms will cause the Mech to explode.
   Arms can be blown off and the Mech will still be able to function

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 18 Jun 1995 23:18:36 GMT

   You can shoot off individual arms or legs.  Damage is tracked by
   location, just as in the pen & paper BattleTech.

2.17 Are Clan targetting computers implemented?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 26 Jun 1995 06:54:58 GMT

   The whole targetting computer concept was a difficult one for
   us.  We opted to have a very good level of targetting that is
   standard in all clan mechs without any price in tonnage and
   weight (beyond that incurred by sensors).

   We will include our interpretation of the clan targetting
   computer as an optional piece of equipment in the add-on.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 29 Jun 1995 09:32:02 GMT

   We discussed having a 'leading' reticle at length.  We may
   include this in our version of the clan targetting computer for
   the add-on, but the current targetting system brackets your
   target and expects you to learn what sort of leading is
   appropriate.

2.18 Is physical combat (DFA, punch, kick) allowed?

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 16 Apr 1995 01:10:43 GMT

   No kicking or punching in MW2. Death From Above jumpjet attacks
   are fair game, as are Japanese battle cries, foul language, and
   dirty looks.

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 16 Apr 1995 01:15:41 GMT

   If you've got a mech with jumpjets, you can do a DFA. EXPERT PILOTS
   ONLY!! Actually hitting a moving mech on the ground is EXTREMELY
   difficult.  We're currently adding more controls for a jumping mech,
   so you can thrust left/right/forward/back. Also, the moment you leave
   the ground (via jump jets, stepping off a cliff, building, etc), a
   small "Down View" window opens on your HUD.

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 18 Jun 1995 22:40:37 GMT

   Although punching and kicking aren't supported per se, damage
   from collision is part of the game, and jump-jetting into people
   is a viable way to cause damage.  DFA is supported.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 26 Jun 1995 06:30:22 GMT

   You can DFA by jumping off cliffs or by using jump-jets.  This
   takes some skill, but it is definitely supported.  Physical
   attacks are supported in that ramming another mech causes
   damage, however there is no specific support for kicking and
   punching.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 7 Jul 1995 09:14:06 GMT

   We'll definitely be debating this as we design the add-on.  It
   adds a little complexity to our animations, but personally, I
   think it would add a lot to gameplay.

2.19 Is there multiplayer support?

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 12 Jun 1995 19:35:30 GMT

   The initial release of MechWarrior II will include a demo of
   modem and network play.  The only limitation of the demo is that
   we're using someone else's modem and network package at the
   moment.  We're not happy with it's quality, and as a result we're
   going to release an inexpensive network/modem add-on pack later
   this year with our own code and a bunch of missions designed
   specifically for multiplayer play.

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 13 Jun 1995 03:32:38 GMT

   The initial version of MechWarrior II will include a demo of our
   modem and net play.  This means both will be one-on-one, and will
   have a limited number of missions.

   Before the end of the year we will be releasing an inexpensive
   add-on that supplements the multiplayer ability to at least 8
   player and has a number of multiplayer missions.

   The primary reason for this decision was to not risk missing our
   ship date because of the multiplayer code.  Likewise, we didn't
   want to ship second-rate communications drivers.

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 14 Jun 1995 02:28:02 GMT

   IPX support for head-to-head play will be in the initial release
   as a demo of the forthcoming network add-on which will expand the
   IPX functionality to at least 8 players, and will add the
   possibility of TCP/IP.

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 18 Jun 1995 22:35:10 GMT

   We are shipping with head to head support for modems and IPX
   networks in the initial release.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 20 Jun 1995 23:16:44 GMT

   The network add-on is scheduled to be out before Christmas (meaning
   in early November).  It is a big priority for us, and actually it's my
   head-to-head all day. 

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 22 Jun 1995 01:39:06 GMT

   

   That will be possible in the netowrk add-on disk later this year.
   The initial release has head-to-head networking.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 22:56:53 GMT

   I fear I've caused some confusion.  Here's the scoop: there are
   three playable version of MechWarrior 2 that are about to be
   released.

   - Downloadable Demo (available as soon as our test
     department says we're done) supports:
       4 single player missions, 4 head-to-head missions, 3 mechs,
       minimal shell.

   - In-store Demo (available July 24th) supports:
       4 single player missions, 4 head-to-head missions, 3 mechs,
       larger shell with some movies.

   - Retail Version (available July 24th) supports:
       58 single player missions, 10-15 head-to-head missions,
       15 mechs, full shell careers, instant action, a mech design
       lab and lots of movies.

   In the past, I have referred to the head-to-head functionality
   in the main release as a demo of our forthcoming 8 player
   add-on.  This is the case, but I think I misled you into
   thinking that it was a seperate from the release.

   The head-to-head in the main release is only a demo in the
   sense that it doesn't allow 8 players and doesn't have
   cooperatvie mode.  These are features that won't be implemented
   until the add-on.

   Sorry for the confusion (I confuse myself sometimes too ).

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 23:10:55 GMT

   The head-to-head in the main release is only a demo in the
   sense that it doesn't allow 8 players and doesn't have
   cooperatvie mode.  These are features that won't be implemented
   until the multiplayer add-on, which is due later this year at a
   very low price point.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 23:34:26 GMT

   After we ship the main release the team will be splitting up to
   work on various projects including:

   Multiplayer add-on
   - Expands the head-to-head play in the initial release to
     accomidate 8 players.
   - Specially designed missions for multiplayer play.
   - Allows for cooperative campaigns.
   - Possible support for TCP/IP.

  From: goffman@rain.org (Scott Goffman)
  Date: 15 Jul 95 05:45:29 GMT

   Just to clarify that: If you buy the game, you get a one-on-one net
   and modem play demo in which you can use ALL the mechs from the full game
   as well as your own designs. If you DON'T buy the game, you can still
   download the public demo, which will have a very limited number of
   mechs.

2.20 Do I fight missions alone or in a team?

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 18 Mar 1995 08:06:32 GMT

   Some missions will have you by yourself, but as you gain experience,
   you will soon start leading one to two other mechs into battle.
   They will be intelligent mechs, able to work on their own, or you
   can direct them. You can order them to attack a selected target,
   disengage, guard a location, retreat, or follow you (probably more
   by the time we ship).

2.21 Is there a VCR recorder/playback feature?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 22 Jun 1995 01:52:45 GMT

   This is in the works for the add-on disk. (And I'll probably be the
   one stuck programming it. )

2.22 What features had to be left out of the game?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 20 Jun 1995 10:32:37 GMT

   Our initial wish list was huge, so it's hard to say what qualifies
   as 'cut', and what things were just too ambitious to begin with.  The
   things we didn't do that I wish we could have are: VCR-mode mission
   play back, partially submerging mechs in water, high polygon forests.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 20 Jun 1995 23:41:48 GMT

   There are a few more esoteric technologies that are not in the mech
   plant (TAG, Artemis, etc), that will likely be available in the
   Missions & Technologies add-on, which is due out before Christmas.

2.23 Do missile spreads appear as one or many missiles?

  From: hullett@alcor.usc.edu (Aardvark Dreams)
  Date: 30 Jun 1995 05:49:41 -0700

   A srm 6 fires six missiles, lrm 20 fires 20 missles, etc.
   We also have streak missles that will lock onto their target.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 4 Jul 1995 19:18:12 GMT

   We actually model geometry for each missile and track it's
   collision in three-space with other objects.  When it strikes a
   mech, there is an impact damage to the part of the mech that it
   struck.  Then there is splash damage from the explosion that is
   applied to any piece in a fixed radius of the explosion [including 
   other mechs].

2.24 How is fire-control handled?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 1 Jul 1995 09:29:55 GMT

   You can group weapons in any combinations you like and
   simultaneously fire them or individually fire each weapon in
   the group.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   There are three firegroups (TICs) that can be fired independently,
   and each weapon can be assigned to any one of the three groups.

2.25 Pulse Lasers!  Do I get to-hit modifiers?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 1 Jul 1995 08:59:33 GMT

   No; aiming is totally up to the player.  Their damage and range
   is according to the FASA guidelines, but since MW2 is a
   simulator, there is no concept of hit-modifiers besides your
   own skill.

2.26 What happens when I eject?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 6 Jul 1995 03:56:25 GMT

   You see the battlefield from ejection-pod perspective, and then
   you are returned to the shell after you top out.

2.27 How fast is the action?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 7 Jul 1995 09:03:23 GMT

   Tough question.  I'd say that once you're in a combat
   situation, things are definitely hectic.  Some mechs (FireMoth
   for instance) have top speeds that are quite fast.
   Additionally, speed is affected by the gravity of the world, so
   on a small moon...

   I think the balance is in how much lead time you have to
   spotting an enemy.  Your radar in MW2 can be zoomed out so that
   you can see an enemy as far away as 4km.  This gives enough
   lead time to plan your defense, and to prepare to dispatch your
   starmates.

   I have to say though; there will be times when you have to act
   without a lot of forethought.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 3: Hardware Support

3.1 What sound cards does the game support?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 20 Jun 1995 23:31:22 GMT

   MechWarrior II has native support for the following soundcards:

   Ensoniq SoundScape
   Creative Labs AWE-32
   Creative Labs Soundblaster Family
   General MIDI via an MPU-401 compatible port
   Gravis UltraSound
   MediaVision Pro Audio Spectrum Family
   ESS 688
   Roland RAP-10
   Roland MT-32 via an MPU-401 compatible port
   Ad Lib Gold
   Ad Lib Music Synthesizer Card
   Any OPL-FM3 based card
   Tandy 3-voice
   IBM speaker (my personal favorite)

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   Ensoniq SoundScape, Gravis UltraSound, Creative Labs AWE-32,
   Creative Labs Soundblaster family, MediaVision ProAudioSpectrum
   family, General MIDI via MPU-401, Roland MT-32 via MPU-401,
   Roland RAP-10, Ad-Lib Gold, Ad-Lib Music Synthesizer Card, ESS 688.

3.2 What kind of joysticks does it support?

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 18 Mar 1995 08:06:32 GMT

   All of our development stations at Activision have full
   Thrustmaster systems: Joystick, throttle, rudder pedals. Torso
   twisting is strongly encouraged for taking out enemy mechs.
   MWII also supports a wide range of other joysticks; pretty
   much anything that's close to standard. It also supports the
   VictorMaxx CyberMaxx Head-Mounted Display, if you're into pounding
   headaches.  :)

  From: madcat@cybernetx.net (Phelan Wolf)
  Date: Mon, 19 Jun 95 01:53:15 EDT

   [On the promotional videotape:]
   Josh [Resnick, producer] also explains to good effect how the game
   will use just about any joystick/control scheme, and the footage
   shows both (what looks like the) Thrustmaster Rudder Pedals
   (being used to control torso twist), a Flightstick Pro, and some
   sort of "virtual" head gear/head-set (being used to "look around"
   the virtual cockpit of a Madcat.  Note:  The virtual cockpit effect,
   left and right "sides" of the canopy, is very impressive, IMO.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 20 Jun 1995 23:21:58 GMT

   You are correct about MechWarrior II supporting ThrustMaster FCS,
   WCS, and RCS.  I have all three connected to my system right now as a
   matter of fact.

   I would also recommend the FlightStick joystick and rudder pedals;
   very smooth.

   And if you're REALLY looking to spend some moeny, we also support
   the Virtual I/O head-mounted display with head tracking in the
   renderred cockpit. 

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   The manual lists Supported Input Devices as:
      Standard two-button joysticks; CH Flightstick and ProPedals;
      Thrustmaster flight, weapons and rudder control systems;
      Thrustmaster F-16 Flightstick; Gravis gamepad and Phoenix
      joystick; Virtual I/O i-glasses; Suncom Technologies SFX
      gamepad; Microsoft Sidewinder joystick

3.3 What about 3-D headsets?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 22 Jun 1995 16:49:32 GMT

   The Virtual I/O headset is a stereo sound, head-tracking, 180,000
   pixel display.  Using its mouse driver, you can look freely around the
   interior of the mech's cockpit as you pilot it.

   I have to say, there are some limitations to head-tracking
   technology that can get frustrating.  The home position, or the
   position where you turn your head to see the center, can get thrown
   off by looking up sharply or down sharply.  I think they are using
   something like a carpenter's level to figure out the angle.  Anyway,
   after playing for a while, you wind up facing another direction than
   when you started.

   That aside, if you learn how to use it, the head mounted display
   REALLY makes you feel like you're in the cockpit.

   I've use Virtual I/O, VFX/1, and CyberMaxx (they all work with
   MechWarrior II, although the CyberMaxx doesn't have a mouse driver
   yet, so I haven't tried its head tracking).  The Virtual I/O is the
   Fries Electronics has it, or you could call Virtual I/O at 206-382-7410.

   A lot of money though .

3.4 Will MW2 support any of the graphics accelerator cards?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 25 Jun 1995 05:15:27 GMT

   With 3D hardware accelerator cards coming out, you might find
   MechWarrior II supporting some of them.  Several boards promise to
   offer hundreds of thousands of perspective-mapped polygons per
   second, as well as fog and spectral highlights in hardware.
   Z-buffering, filtered maps, etc.


3.5 What speed modem is required?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 4 Jul 1995 19:24:20 GMT

   9600bps is required (we send about 9200 bits per second).  This
   is the same throughput we use for the network version, so
   there's no sacrifice playing head-to-head.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 4: World Elements

4.1 Are there ?

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 18 Mar 1995 08:06:32 GMT

   Trucks are in the game now. Some are stationary targets you can
   blow up just for the sheer fun of it; others will be moving in
   convoy, and you'll have to intercept or guard them, depending on
   the mission. Aerotech fighters are still a maybe. Already in the
   game are dropships, helicopters, elementals, gun turrets, and a
   monorail.

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 10 May 1995 18:04:40 GMT

   LOTS of gun turrets. Some on buildings, some in cliff walls, some on
   tanks.

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 10 May 1995 18:04:40 GMT

   There are dropships, primarily used as mission objectives (i.e.,
   make it to the dropship to pull off of a planet, destroy the enemy
   dropship, etc). I don't believe there are any aerospace fighters in
   the game at this point, but there are helicopters.

  From: Josh Resnick via email
        posted by eastham@dseg.ti.com
  Date: Date: 9 Jun 1995 18:11:17 GMT

   In addition to Mechs, players will be able to engage aerial
   gunships, tanks, turrets, personnel carriers and other intelligent
   game things.

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 12 Jun 1995 19:45:27 GMT

   Elementals, tanks, and aero are in select missions.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   There are a variety of tanks, hover vehicles, planes, and
   even dropships in the varios missions.

4.2 I heard there were bridges; is that true?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 19 Jun 1995 00:15:44 GMT

   Yes.

4.3 What kind of terrain is in the game?

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 18 Mar 1995 08:06:32 GMT

   Terrain is a major part of MWII. Hills/mountains that you can hide
   behind, climb up onto, run around, etc. are very useful, both for
   you and your enemies. The AI mechs love to come popping over the top
   of a mountain and raining fire down on your noggin. Some missions
   will be mostly flatlands with a few mountains here and there;
   others will be all rolling terrain; others will be canyon missions.

  From: Josh Resnick via email
        posted by eastham@dseg.ti.com
  Date: Date: 9 Jun 1995 18:11:17 GMT

   In the missions, players will be able to fully interact with (climb
   over, through, under, etc.) buildings in urban settings, rolling
   hills, craters, canyons, mesas, ice chasms  --  basically any type
   of natural terrain EXCEPT water and trees/vegetation.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   Mountains, cities, canyons, ice worlds, craters, tunnels, mesas...
   Due to technical limitations, [water and forests] will not be
   part of the game.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 7 Jul 1995 09:14:06 GMT

   If we do a version of MW2 for a hardware accelerated 3D card
   (not in any way insinuating or otherwise hinting that we might
   do such a thing), we would have the necessary performace boost
   to incorporate [water and forest] environment types. ;)

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   The ten terrains listed in the Instant Action mode are:
   mesa desert, sparse urban, canyon, ice plains, rolling hills, ice desert,
   cratered vacuum, rocky highland, enclosed arena, and enclosed trial area.

4.4 Can I get on the hills and mountains like I could in MW 1?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 19 Jun 1995 00:15:44 GMT

   Yes, all of our terrain can be walked on.  It's not just there to
   look pretty. 

4.5 Can I cool my mech off in water?

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 18 Jun 1995 22:40:37 GMT

   [Graphics algoithm described; see question 5.3]
   For this reason, we are unable to effectively render mechs partially
   submerged in water.  I very much wish we could have done this,
   but it is a technical limitation that can only be gotten around
   at the cost of game performance.

4.6 Is there fire and smoke in the game?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 26 Jun 1995 06:50:55 GMT

   Many buildings do catch fire when they are destroyed, but it
   doesn't spread.  Likewise, explosions cause some smoke, but it
   is not much of a factor in LOS.

4.7 All these vehicles are nice, but can we drive 'em?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 27 Jun 1995 05:52:13 GMT

   With the cheat keys .  Did I mention elementals?

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 5: Graphics

5.1 What resolutions does the game support?

  From: Josh Resnick via email
        posted by eastham@dseg.ti.com
  Date: Date: 9 Jun 1995 18:11:17 GMT

   Low res is 320x200 and hi res is 640x480  --  full screen.  Users
   with 486's might not be able to achieve an acceptable frame rate
   when playing hi res, but hi res on the Pentiums rock!

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 14 Jun 1995 22:02:25 GMT

   The shell is all 640x480 (shots available at www.activision.com).
   The sim can run up to 1280x1024, depending on your CPU.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   Supported resolutions will be: 320x200, 640x480, and 1024x768.
   Higher resolution modes require faster processors.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   The non-simulation shell always runs at 640x480, and the simulation
   can run at 320x200, 640x480, and 1024x768.

5.2 What resolution will I be able to reasonably use?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 21 Jun 1995 08:13:10 GMT

   The game runs very nicely on a 486-100.  The only feature that
   really craves more computing power is the high-resolution mode.
   640x480 plays fine on my Pentium-90, but 1024x768 and 1280x1024
   make me want a faster machine (that's an awful lot of pixels!).

   I think the rule of thumb is: the faster your CPU, the better
   everything runs.  (Except for MechWarrior I... every try running
   that on a Pentium?)

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 26 Jun 1995 06:28:08 GMT

   [on a 486-50] probably best to stick to 320x200; I choose
   frame-rate over resolution any time.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 26 Jun 1995 06:38:46 GMT

   I play 640x480 all the time on my Pentium-90; I don't have
   frame-rate statistics, but it runs quite well.  1024x768 is too
   slow for my liking on my P90.  I'd suggest the faster Pentiums
   or a P6 for that.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 1 Jul 1995 09:09:01 GMT

   I don't have frame-rate statistics, but a 486-80 will run
   320x200 very smoothely.  I would not recommend running 640x480
   on this configuration though; I consider the base for 640x480
   to be a Pentium-90.

5.3 What kind of graphics does it use?  Is there texture mapping?

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 18 Jun 1995 22:40:37 GMT

   MechWarrior II, as with Doom and Descent before it, uses an
   algorithm called 'Painter's algorithm'.  This is a very fast way
   to draw polygons that enables us to bring real-time 3D to PC's.
   This algorithm has the limitation that polygons can not
   inter-penetrate each other and be sorted properly.  For this
   reason, we are unable to effectively render mechs partially
   submerged in water.  I very much wish we could have done this,
   but it is a technical limitation that can only be gotten around
   at the cost of game performance.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 19 Jun 1995 00:15:44 GMT

   Yes.  We alternately texture map, goraud shade, and flat shade our
   terrain geometry for a variety of feels to each planet.

5.4 How do the detail of the 'mechs compare to Earthsiege?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 19 Jun 1995 00:15:44 GMT

   EarthSiege did a very nice job mapping their mechs.  Our mechs also
   have specific face mapping.

5.5 Are the quicktime movies on the web site intro or sim footage?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 21 Jun 1995 04:13:40 GMT

   The movies were all taken from our intro movies.

5.6 Why are the movies not simulator footage?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 21 Jun 1995 08:30:45 GMT

   That's our fine marketting department for you.  They love to show
   the SGI rederred stuff so much, they forget the heart of the game
   is the simulator.  The footage for that video was done for Winter
   CES (last January), so don't go getting disappointed yet.

   I realize there will always be some people who were expecting us to
   pull off film-quality graphics on a PC, but for the most part, I don't
   think we'll disappoint you.  We push around more polygons than any game 
   to date on the PC.

5.7 Can I reduce the screen-size to improve frame rate?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 23:04:28 GMT

   We have a number of performance options, but scaling the image
   is not one of them.  We implemented this, but we found that
   because your HUD (heads-up-display) is blitted around the edges
   of the screen, we had to spend time blanking the black border.
   Thus, we really didn't get an increase in frame-rate.

   If we were willing to shrink the cockpit displays as well, this
   would buy some frame-rate, but the trouble then is that you
   have trouble reading important information.

   We decided that the other detail options were better to focus
   on, and we have implemented a number of these.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 6: Extras

6.1 Are there cheat codes we can use in the game?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 22 Jun 1995 01:48:28 GMT

   There are loads of cheats in MechWarrior II.  I'll be posting some
   after the game is released.  I can't even get through Doom II without
   cheating. 

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 22 Jun 1995 16:42:29 GMT

   

   Aha, you figured one of them out already! 

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 27 Jun 1995 05:52:13 GMT

   

   With the cheat keys .  Did I mention elementals?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 1 Jul 1995 08:44:38 GMT

   The cheats (invulnerability, no heat tracking, unlimited ammo) will 
   prevent you from getting enough honor points to finish the game.

6.2 Will there be a demo/shareware version?

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 18 Mar 1995 08:06:32 GMT

   Yes. Current plans call for releasing a one-on-one version of the
   game as shareware/PD. It will support both modem and network play.
   It will ONLY support one-on-one; no more than that. It probably
   will not be released until just before ship time

  From: Josh Resnick via email
        posted by eastham@dseg.ti.com
  Date: Date: 9 Jun 1995 18:11:17 GMT

   Unfortunately, we don't have much time to focus on a demo.  While
   we have something that would be a lot of fun to play at this point,
   it would still take up too much of our resources (expecially in test)
   to release a proper demo.  We're hopeful we can send something out
   a couple of weeks before ship, but please don't hold me to that.
   Worse case, we'll release a retail and net demo either alongside the
   main SKU or a few weeks afterward.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 18 Jun 1995 23:42:22 GMT

   The shareware version and the demo are exactly the same thing.
   They both conatin the ability to play head-to-head.

   The main release of course also has the ability to go head to head,
   but we won't offer 8 players and specific network missions until the
   add-on.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 20 Jun 1995 10:14:42 GMT

   I just submitted the design document for the demo to the director,
   so we should start putting it together next week.  I expect that it
   will be out before the end of the month.

   It looks like the demo will have a handful of missions and mechs,
   playable both head-to-head and stand-alone.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   The demo that is floating around now is over a year old.  There
   will be a new one available in the next few weeks.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 23:10:55 GMT

   Downloadable Demo (available as soon as our test department says 
   we're done) supports:
    4 single player missions, 4 head-to-head missions, 3 mechs,
    minimal shell.

   In-store Demo (available July 24th) supports:
    4 single player missions, 4 head-to-head missions, 3 mechs,
    larger shell with some movies.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 18 Jul 1995 01:32:59 GMT

   The new demo of MechWarrior II will be available next week.

   We've modified it slightly; it is going to have:

   - 3 head-to-head missions (modem or IPX/Netbios network)
   - 2 single player missions
   - 4 mechs chassis to choose from

   I'll be posting when it is available.

6.3 How big will the demo be?

  From: dkamins@course1.harvard.edu (Daniel Kamins)
  Date: 25 Jun 1995 03:32:42 GMT

   We're trying to squeeze as much game play, as many mechs, and as
   many missions as possible, as well as network and modem head-to-head
   battle onto as few floppies as we can!

   We are shooting for two or three floppies (3MB or so), which should
   be an excellent balance between features and download time, and give a
   good idea of what the full game will be.

6.4 What add-ons are planned?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 23:34:26 GMT

   After we ship the main release the team will be splitting up to
   work on various projects including:

   Missions & Technologies add-on
   - New story, new mechs, new missions, more equipment options.
   - Also, possibly an enhanced mech editor and possibly a level
     editor.

   Multiplayer add-on
   - Expands the head-to-head play in the initial release to
     accomidate 8 players.
   - Specially designed missions for multiplayer play.
   - Allows for cooperative campaigns.
   - Possible support for TCP/IP.

   Windows 95/NT port
   - Support for Windows sound cards and video drivers.
   - Ability to run in a scaleable window.
   - Multi-threading.

   PowerMacintosh port
   - Support for Mac sound cards and video drivers.
   - Ability to run in a scaleable window.

   Foriegn Language versions
   - Translations into several languages

   and who knows where else MW2 will show up.  A game console?  A
   hardware accelerated 3D graphic card?  You just never know...

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 6 Jul 1995 03:56:25 GMT

   Narc beacons are slated for the add-on.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 28 Jul 1995 08:30:38 GMT

   The NetMech version this October will have around 10 new
   missions for multiplayer, and the 'Missions & Technology'
   add-on this Christmas will have around 15 new single player
   missions.

   In the mean time, we'll be releasing a mission editor sometime
   around October.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 07:42:04 GMT

   There will be:

   October:
   - NetMech
   - Level Editor

   November:
   - Win 95 version (discounted upgrade to DOS users)
   - Add-on #1

   Jan/Feb:
   - Add-on #2

6.5 Will Activision be doing a future Mechwarrior game?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 19 Jun 1995 21:07:06 GMT

   I wish we could do MechWarrior III.  I'm afraid the 'Missions &
   Technologies' add-on will be the last BattleTech product from
   Activision.  FASA has teamed up with Spectrum Holobyte.

   I am hopeful that FASA will reconsider and let the MechWarrior II
   team put out a sequel when they hear from people who have played the
   game, but we'll have to wait and see on that one.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 22 Jun 1995 16:39:31 GMT

   I don't have e-mail addresses at FASA, but after people have had a
   chance to play the game, perhaps FASA will let us continue the
   series.  In the mean time, we will do some good add-ons that focus
   on filling out more aspects of the BattleTech universe and fixing
   any problems that people notice.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   I'm sorry to say that FASA has teamed up with another game company
   for future BattleTech products.  I'm hopeful that enough people will
   enjoy MechWarrior II for FASA to consider letting Activision do a
   sequel.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 26 Jun 1995 06:38:46 GMT

   Actually FASA is involved in a lawsuit with Dynamix over
   EarthSiege.  We have a very good relationship with FASA.
   Although we may apply our 3D technology to other games, they
   won't have anything to do with fighting robots.

6.6 I'm a CLANNER!  I want to invade the Inner Sphere!

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 4 Jul 1995 19:14:53 GMT

   Going back in time to the inner sphere invasion has been a
   popular request.  We're considering waays we might work this
   into the add-on.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 6 Jul 1995 03:56:25 GMT

   This seems to be the number one request, so I have a feeling
   that's the way we'll go.  We have to have some design meetings
   next month to kick off the add-on, so we won't be deciding for
   sure until then.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 7: Operating Systems

7.1 Will MW2 run under Windows 95?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 18 Jun 1995 23:48:42 GMT

   We've tested MechWarrior II on Windows 95, and it runs fine in a
   full-screen DOS box.  However, the Windows 95 version will add the
   ability to run in a Window, and also multi-threading.  On a single
   processor machine, performance should be nearly identical to the DOS
   CD-ROM version.

7.2 Will MW2 run under OS/2?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 22 Jun 1995 16:29:36 GMT

   MechWarrior II is a DOS4GW application.  I haven't tried it
   personally
   under OS/2, but this is something our test department will be doing.
   I'll post the results when I know them.

7.3 Will there be a  port of the game?

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 16 Jun 1995 02:06:18 GMT

   You asked about a non-mac PowerPC version.  We will support
   Windows NT, which runs nicely on PowerPC's.  This will be part of
   the Win95/WinNT version of the game that ships later this year.

   OS/2 has a lot of loyal followers, but the regrettable fact is
   that there is not a big enough game market for OS/2 to
   rationalize budgetting a port.  Perhaps this will change over the
   next year, but in the mean time Windows 95/Windows NT is going to
   be our focus.

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 16 Jun 1995 09:34:39 GMT

   There will be a Mac-OS PowerPC version of MechWarrior II
   available later in the year.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 25 Jun 1995 05:15:27 GMT

   We will be releasing a Windows 95/NT port later this year.  My
   personal goal is to get this version running on both SGI/MIPS
   R4x000 machines as well as DEC Alpha machines.  This version would
   be multi-threaded, and therefore capable of utilizing multiple
   processors.  (I spent a summer at Microsoft working on Windows NT,
   so this is a bit of a pet project of mine.)

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 22:28:50 GMT

   It's my understanding that there will be a coupon for a discounted 
   upgrade to the Windows 95/NT version in the box with the DOS version.

   We'd release them simultaneously if we could; we just don't
   have the resources to complete both at the same time.

   Incidentally, multi-threading won't buy you anything unless you
   have multiple processors, so functionality-wise, the only
   difference between the DOS and Win 95/NT version is the host
   operating system.  It's not like you're getting a lesser
   product if buy the initial release.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 23:34:26 GMT

   After we ship the main release the team will be splitting up to
   work on various projects including:

   Windows 95/NT port
   - Support for Windows sound cards and video drivers.
   - Ability to run in a scaleable window.
   - Multi-threading.

   PowerMacintosh port
   - Support for Mac sound cards and video drivers.
   - Ability to run in a scaleable window.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 23:42:55 GMT

   We won't be starting on the PowerMac port until after the
   initial release.  We're hopeful that we can finish before the
   end of the year, but if we hit any technical snags, it could
   take until January or February.

   Sorry to keep you waiting.  I'd rather set a realistic
   timeframe than create disappointment over missed release dates
   (not that the MechWarrior team has had any experience with that
   .)

7.4 Will there be an upgrade path from the DOS version to Win95/NT?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 23 Jun 1995 19:40:11 GMT

   Yes.  People who purchase the original product will not have to pay
   for a completely new copy for Windows. Pricing for the upgrade has
   not yet been determined, but it will be considerably less than the
   full price.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 05:46:02 GMT

   The Win95 version will be discounted to registered
   owners of the DOS version.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 05:55:52 GMT

   MW2 for Win95 (discounted upgrade for registered users of DOS
   version) will definitely take advantage of accelerated
   blitting.  It isn't determined yet whether we'll support 3D
   acceleration, but I hope so .

7.5 Any plans for MW2 on Sony's Playstation?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 4 Jul 1995 20:54:02 GMT

   I'm hopeful that Activision will decide to port MEchWarrior II
   to a console such as the PlayStation.  If this were done, it
   would be modified somewhat to make it more arcade-like.

   One note about the PlayStation though: although it has a very
   good ability to push around flat-shaded polygons, it's texture
   mapping abilities are inferior to what we can do on a
   Pentium-90 with 16 megabytes of RAM.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 8: Inside Info

8.1 What machines/configurarations were used for testing?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 26 Jun 1995 06:28:08 GMT

   The testers have everything from 486-50 computers (not
   officially supported) to Pentium 120's.  We test on as many
   machines as possible, and there are a number of people areound
   the country beta testing as well.
   I have a 486-66 and a Pentium-90.

8.2 What programming platforms did you use to write the game?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 20 Jun 1995 23:41:48 GMT

   Oh no, now you've done it.  Given me an excuse to ramble endlessly
   that is .  We started using Borland's 16-bit real mode compiler,
   but about a year ago myself and another programmer here converted
   the program to use Watcom's 32-bit protected mode compiler (that is
   actually part of the reason we had to delay shipping).  The game is
   written in a mixture of C and assembly for optimum speed.

8.3 How does MW2 compare to Virtual Worlds' BattleTech Centers?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 23:07:04 GMT

   MechWarrior II is a bit more technologically advanced in that we
   texture map, have jump-jet, and have terrain that you can walk on.
   However, Virtual World supports 8 player games, something we will
   not do until later this year in a network add-on pack.

   In defense of Virtual World, they have some new pods coming out that
   take advantage of hardware acceleration that have phenominal graphics.
   They will be pushing the envelope again soon.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 26 Jun 1995 06:28:08 GMT

   I have played a lot of Virtual World BattleTech.  I enjoy the
   competition a great deal.  Their technology is somewhat behind
   ours, but they will soon release new pods that look to have
   fantastic graphics.

8.4 What's taken so long?

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 18 Mar 1995 08:06:32 GMT

   Oof. This is a tough one. There are many factors that have led
   MW2 to this state. Here are a few: a) over-eager PR people hyping
   a game that was not even close to being done. This led to forced
   promises of release dates that were IMPOSSIBLE to make. b) lack of
   a design. There was no clear direction for the first year and a half
   on the game, and no solid style. c) Featuritis: A disease that often
   afflicts game developers, causing them to want to keep adding more
   and more features to a game, rather than debugging and shipping what
   they already have. d) Morale. As they fell further and further
   behind schedule, the programmers and artists felt less and less
   inclined to produce. This led to departures.

   The fact is that not ONE of the original mech team members was ever
   fired by Activision. They all left of their own accord to go to other
   companies.  I'm sure the Activision management has no interest in
   dispelling this particular myth.  :)

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 14 Jun 1995 22:02:25 GMT

   The code for MechWarrior was never 'scrapped.'  It was converted
   to protected mode so we could access more memory.  We have been
   developing non-stop for 3 years (and trust me, I'm tired ).

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   We had to convert the engine to protected mode before we could
   even begin to design missions.  Protected mode allowed us to
   access all available memory in a computer rather than just 640k.
   In the words of that lame wine commoercial: 'We will serve no wine
   before its time.'  On July 24th, it's time.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 9: Miscellaneous

9.1 Where can I read about MW2 in the magazine press?

  From: goffman@rain.org ()
  Date: 17 Jun 1995 06:22:15 GMT

   If you like 'Mech artwork, check out the July issue of Computer 
   Gaming World (cover and article), the July issue of Wired (article), 
   and the August issue of Strategy Plus (cover and article).

  From: Brian Jacobosky 
  Date: 23 Jun 1995 00:55:45 GMT

   The July issue of Computer Gaming World has a feature article on 
   MechWarrior 2. The article is reasonably thorough in explaining the
   story behind the game and does an okay job of describing the game play
   itself.

  From: goffman@rain.org (Scott Goffman)
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 05:42:53 GMT

   For other MW2 related stuff, check out the latest Wired magazine, as
   well as the August issue of Strategy Plus.

9.2 Can I be a beta tester?

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 18 Mar 1995 08:06:32 GMT

   This is the most common question I've gotten. I'm sorry to say
   that, as far as know, we do not need any more beta testers. We have
   an enormous in-house testing department, as well as plenty of
   outside volunteers. So please don't ask.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   Thank you very much for your interest, but unfortunately the
   program has already filled up.

9.3 How do I get a job at Activision as president, CEO, and supreme ruler?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   Send a resume and cover letter to Human Resources, Activision,
   11601 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA, 90025

9.4 What about a MW2 movie?

  From: eastham@dseg.ti.com (Gary Eastham)
  Date: 29 Jun 1995 13:33:19 GMT

   Multiple screen plays have been submitted to New Line Productions.
   Supposedly, the lawyers are now doing their thing (whatever that
   would be...).

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 10: Net References

10.1 What Activision MW2 team members are on the net?

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

  I've seen the following Activision people post to the newsgroups,
  or had their names/addresses mentioned by other Activision posters.

   Josh Resnick (Producer)
   jresnick@activision.com
   (Production: Producer)
   
   Tim Morten, programmer
   tmorten@activision.com
   72623.467@compuserve.com
   (Programming: Simulation Programmers)
   
   Scott Goffman
   3-D Animator
   Activision Studios
   Los Angeles, CA
   goffman@rain.org  OR  sgoffman@activision.com
   (Art: Shell Stills and Animations)
   (Packaging and Promotional Materials: Additional Cover Art)
   
   Ken Maxwell Hullett
   Associate Game Designer
   MechWarrior 2
   hullett@usc.edu
   khullett@activision.com
   (Production: Associate Game Designer)
   
   Sean Vesce, lead designer
   sean_vesce@activision.com
   (Production: Lead Game Designer)
   
   Dan Kamins
   dkamins@course2.harvard.edu
   (Programming: Programming Interns)

   John Keating, enemy logic
   john_keating@activision.com
   (Programming: Simulation Programmers)

   J.J. Franzen, 3D geometry & mech designer
   jfranzen@activision.com
   (Art: 3-D Simulation Models and Animations)

   John Mamais
   On-Line Rep
   actsearch@aol.com

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 28 Jun 1995 02:33:38 GMT

   Several member of the MechWarrior II team have also agreed to
   respond to e-mails from anyone with questions.  We're in the
   last few weeks of production, so be patient with us in terms of
   replies.  We will try to answer every e-mail though.

   game logic - tmorten@activision.com -- THAT'S ME!
   enemy logic - john_keating@activision.com
   movies and still art - sgoffman@activision.com
   level designer - sean_vesce@activision.com
   3D geometry & mech designer - jfranzen@activision.com

10.2 Where do MW2 team members usually read and/or post?

   USENET newsgroups:
     rec.games.mecha
     comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.strategic
     comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.action
     alt.games.mechwarrior2
     alt.mechwarrior2

   CompuServe Game Publishers B Forum, Activision section
   America Online's Activision area

10.3 On what ftp sites can I find Mechwarrior II info?

   Screen shots from the game:
      ftp://ftp.csua.berkeley.edu/pub/btech/incoming/
      Filenames: SIM*.GIF, MW2SIM*.GIF

   Screen shots, quicktime files, and FAQ:
      ftp://rom.oit.gatech.edu/pub/mw2/
   
10.4 What web pages are there about Mechwarrior II?
   
   Activision's Official Mechwarrior II web page
      http://www.activision.com/mech/home.html

   Gamewave's MW2 Pre-release Info
      http://wantree.com.au/gamewave/m2.html

   This FAQ, screen shots, and quicktime movies
      http://rom.oit.gatech.edu/~willday/mw2/

(Part 2 of 2)

The Unofficial, 
                                                                                
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     FREQUENTLY       ASKED         QUESTIONS        LIST        PART 1
=-=-=
Unofficial Mechwarrior II FAQ

   Part 2 (of 2): Playing the game!!!

compiled by Will Day 
Version 2.0  8/9/95

This is a Frequently Asked Questions list compiled for the new
game _Mechwarrior II_ from Activision.  We were lucky to have 
several members of the MW2 programming team posting to the newsgroups 
and answering questions, so many of the answers you see here come 
directly from them.

The FAQ is split into two parts:
    Part 1: a re-hash of the Pre-release FAQ, providing mostly 
            descriptions of the game.  This would be most useful for
            those who haven't bought the game yet, and want to know
            "What is it like???"
    Part 2: addresses specific topics relating to playing the game,
            like cheats, bugs, and general questions of the type "How
            do I do _this_ in the game???"

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Revision history

2.0  8/9/95
     - Reorganized Pre-release version into a Post-release version, 
       split into two parts

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Table of Contents

Section 1: The Game Shell
1.1 Why doesn't Alpha Attack use his PPCs on the 2nd enemy mech in the intro?
1.2 How many cut-scenes are there?
1.3 Can I read the greyed out information in the Archive Holoprojector?
1.4 Can I change the name of my custom mechs from "User variant #X"?
1.5 Nice music; what was used to create it?
1.6 What music in the game is GMIDI, and what is from the CD?
1.7 Can I listen to a different CD during missions?
1.8 Can I play the game without the CD in the drive?

Section 2: Cheats and Codes and Neat Things
2.1 What cheat codes are there?
2.2 I can't get the Enzo cheat to work.
2.3 It won't let me use the BattleMaster.
2.4 How do I modify the cheat mechs (Elemental, Tarantula, Battlemaster)?
2.5 What other easter-eggs are in the game?

Section 3: Control Configuration
3.1 How do I get my 2-joystick setup to work?
3.2 I assigned a key to a function, and now it's performing TWO functions!
3.3 Pressing the "firegroup-2" key also centers my torso.  
    - Or, the FireGroup-2 doesn't work from my Thrustmaster.
3.4 The jumpjet rotate keys don't work on my FLCS.
3.5 I'd really like a key to move to the next weapon group.
3.6 Why does the torso always center itself when controlled with a joystick?  
    - Or, why is it so hard to aim with the joystick?

Section 4: The Simulation
4.1 The mech won't ever come to a complete stop.
4.2 If I have no ammo, do I have to worry about overheating?
4.3 Sometimes my jumpjets don't lift me up at all.
4.4 Why do the enemy mechs pick on me specifically?
4.5 Why is my right torso/arm ALWAYS the first thing to be destroyed?
4.6 Does the enemy AI have a sense of self preservation?
4.7 When I press 'm' to recenter the torso to the legs, why does it jerk?

Section 5: Problems
5.1 I don't get music in the game.
5.2 The CD only works in first slot of my multidisk CD drive.
5.3 The game crashes, and I get page frame errors.
5.4 I get a "critical write error on drive c:"
5.5 The game keeps locking up when I'm calibrating my joysticks.
5.6 How much memory can the game make use of?
5.7 How can I improve the speed of the game?

Section 6: Complaints
6.1 Why do the stars only have 3 mechs?  They're supposed to be _five_.
6.2 I'm limited to only 10 weapons on a mech?
6.3 The mechs don't fall down when they lose a leg.
6.4 Why is the ER PPC shorter range than the ER Large Laser?

Section 7: Network and Multiplayer-Gaming
7.1 Do I need more than one copy of the game to multiplay?
7.2 Will the full network version directly support IPX, rather than
    requiring NetBios?
7.3 Can I netplay between the demo and full version?

Section 8: Extras
8.1 Where's the DEMO?  Is it OUT YET??
8.2 I never saw the canyon wall that was shown in one of the screen shots.
    Did I miss something?
8.3 The computer has a nice voice.
8.4 What machines/configurarations were used for testing?
8.5 What programming platforms did you use to write the game?
8.6 The credits mention"Special thanks to...Tim Morten (for the Second
    Coming)".
8.7 What's taken so long?

Section 9: The Future
9.1 Is there a level editor?  Or, What add-ons are planned?
9.1 Will the M&T disk work with the NetMech add-on?
9.1 I'm a CLANNER!  I want to invade the Inner Sphere!
9.1 Will there be a  port of the game?
9.1 Will there be an upgrade path from the DOS version to Win95/NT?
    Other versions - Win95
9.1 Any plans for MW2 on Sony's Playstation?
9.1 Will Activision be doing a future Mechwarrior game?
9.1 What about a MW2 movie?

Section 10: Net References
10.1 What Activision people involved with Mechwarrior are on the net?
10.2 Where do Activision-Mechwarrior people usually read and/or post?
10.3 On what ftp sites can I find Mechwarrior II info?
10.4 What web pages are there about Mechwarrior II?

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 1: The Game Shell

1.1 Why doesn't Alpha Attack use his PPCs on the 2nd enemy mech in the intro?

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   I dunno.  Maybe, ah, maybe he took splash damage from the
   explosion of his starmate.  Yeah, that's the ticket.  And, ah, it
   took out his PPC's.  Okay, yeah.

1.2 How many cut-scenes are there?

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   There are a total of five cut-scenes: the main intro, the two clan
   intros, and the two clan endings.

1.3 Can I read the greyed out information in the Archive Holoprojector?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 27 Jul 1995 07:00:39 GMT

   I actually didn't notice the greyed out entries until I read a
   post earlier today.  I guess we'll have to fill them out in the
   add-on!

1.4 Can I change the name of my custom mechs from "User variant #X"?

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   You can change the name: (a) when you first create the custom
   mech; (b) by clicking customize again, in which case it'll be save
   _in addition to_ the previously-named mech.

   I also have a little DOS command line utility that'll show or set
   the variant name.  It's at:
      http://rom.oit.gatech.edu/~willday/mw2/mekname.zip
      ftp://rom.oit.gatech.edu/pub/mw2/mekname.zip

1.5 Nice music; what was used to create it?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 05:32:08 GMT

   It was a Roland JV series rack mount.

1.6 What music in the game is GMIDI, and what is from the CD?

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   I've never really made any definite determination, but I believe that
   the mission music is spooled from the CD, whereas music in the shell
   is GMIDI.  At least, the Trials/IA setup screen plays GMIDI music.

1.7 Can I listen to a different CD during missions?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 28 Jul 1995 08:17:54 GMT

   Yes; our testers did this all the time.

1.8 Can I play the game without the CD in the drive?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 27 Jul 1995 03:29:23 GMT

   The game expects to play CD-audio off the CD.  Several
   other assets, including the training instructor's voice, are
   not copied by the full installation.  The game looks to the CD
   to find these things.  It will not run without them.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 28 Jul 1995 09:41:22 GMT

   Even with the full install, much of the art for the shell is
   read explicitly off the CD.  Also, there are 26 tracks of CD
   audio that the game expects to find on the CD.  Sorry; we
   actually meant it when we said 2X CD-ROM required!

   Seriously though, I do apologize for the inconvenience.  The
   CD-audio can't reside on a hard-drive, so we designed on the
   assumption we'd always have access to the CD as a repository
   for art as well.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 06:50:04 GMT

   MechWarrior 2 expects to play CD audio off of your CD drive
   (not MIDI or digitized audio, real CD-audio you can listen to
   in your stereo's CD player).  Also, it expects to play the 40MB
   plus movie sequences from the CD.  Also, it expects to find a
   number of other art resources on the CD.

   In short, no.  Sorry!

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 2: Cheats and Codes and Neat Things

2.1 What cheat codes are there?

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

    These codes work in the simulation, by holding down CTRL-ALT-SHIFT
    and typing:

    blorb       Toggle invulnerability
    cia         Toggle unlimited ammo
    coldmiser   Toggle heat tracking
    hangaround  Toggle mission time-limit
    flygirl     Add jumpjets to mech
    mightymouse Toggle infinite Jumpjet juice
    gankem      Destroy targeted mech
    enolagay    Explode an atom bomb (killing everything?)
    michelin    Toggle bounding spheres on debris and mech parts
    tinkerbell  View battle from free-floating camera.  Turn off with "c".
                ctrl-left to turn left
                ctrl-right to turn right
                ctrl-up to increase altitude
                ctrl-down to decrease altitude
                z to move forward
                shift-z to move backwards
    front       Toggles mini-front-view, shown in place of mini-rear-view
    xray        Enhanced imaging with see-through.  Turn off with "w".
    dorcs       view the MW2 Sim Programmer Dorcs Web pages
    icanthackit End mission successfully
    idkfa       End mission as a failure

    zmak        Toggles Time expansion (?)
    meepmeep    Time compression key enabled (?)
    unmeepmeep  Time compression key disabled (?)
    lairdo      "ATTENTION ENEMIES: Don't mess with the blimp." (?)
    dei         "F E I R".  (?) (Maybe Michael Douglas knows what this does.)
    sh*t        "Freebirth vulgarity will not be tolerated!"
    f*ck        "Freebirth vulgarity will not be tolerated!"

    These codes work in the Trials of Grievance instant-action missions, by
    changing your name in Star Config to:

    Calvin      Adds Elemental between Dire Wolf and Fire Moth (1 of 3)
    Hobbes      Adds Tarantula between Elemental and Fire Moth (2 of 3)
    Enzo        Adds Battlemaster IIC between Tarantula and Fire Moth (3 of 3)

    This code works in the campaigns, by registering with the name:

    FREEBIRTHTOAD    Lets you pick and play any of the 16 missions

2.2 I can't get the Enzo cheat to work.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   It only works in the Trials of Grievance, not in the Wolf or JF
   campaigns.  Be sure the E is capitalized.

2.3 It won't let me use the BattleMaster.

  From: morgan@sneezy.cc.utexas.edu (Matt Morgan)
  From: morgan@ccwf.cc.utexas.edu (Steve Chauvin)
  Date: 8 Aug 1995 20:41:43 -0500

   Someone was in a hurry at ship-time at Activision, and made 2 careless
   mistakes.  To fix the battlemaster problem:

         In file MW2.PRJ -- change byte at offset 3206200 from 0x0B to 0x11
                        and change byte at offset 3206752 from 0x0B to 0x11

   Someone converted to decimal when they shouldn't have ;)

   In file MW2SHELL.EXE -- Search for string "btllmstr"
                            and replace with "bttlmstr"

   That should do it, it did for me.  Please use this mech's powers for good
   and not evil.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   I was able to get the BattleMaster to work with only the string change to
   MW2SHELL.EXE as described above, at offset 537782.

  From: louish@mhv.net (Louis C. Hendricks)
  Date: Thu, 10 Aug 1995 02:30:39 GMT

   I threw together some code I had lying around to patch the right
   bytes in both files that need fixing.  You can get it at my web page:

   http://www.computer.net/~louish/bttlmstr.zip

2.4 How do I modify the cheat mechs (Elemental, Tarantula, Battlemaster)?

  From: Shane Hudson 
  Date: 8 Aug 1995 16:39:26 GMT

   You have to USE an elemental in a ToG/Mission first.  When you return
   to the builder screen, you will be able to modify the elemental.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   It IS possible to get the Customize button on the Elemental,
   Battlemaster, and Tarantula without having to go into a mission.  I
   haven't worked out all the variables, but what appeared to work for me
   was:
      (after applying the Enzo cheat, and going to the IA screen)
      - pick a mech you can customize
      - go to the mech lab (ie click on the mech outline)
      - exit back to the IA screen
      - pick the elemental (or BM or Tar)
      - go to the mech lab again, and you should be able to customize

   Sometimes I had to go down two or three mechs into the list (ie the
   Jenner) because sometimes when I'd just choose the Firemoth, I'd go
   into the mech lab and be unable to customize _it_.

2.5 What other easter-eggs are in the game?

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   In the archive holoprojector, some of the periods after the
   heading numbers are buttons.  Click on them and you'll a few
   interesting screens.  Check both clans.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 3: Control Configuration

3.1 How do I get my 2-joystick setup to work?

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   The "CH Flightstick Pro" joystick input option will allow you to
   assign the rudders (X-axis of joy2) and the throttle (Y-axis of
   joy2) to game functions.  I'd also suggest:

      (1) _DE-SELECT_ "2-button" joystick.  This is very important,
      as the two will conflict with each other and you'll get some
      screwy results.

      (2) Delete all the calibration files (*.cal) in the mech2
      directory.  Then, the next time you enter the simulation it'll ask
      you to recalibrate.  Having old or spurious calibration files
      seemed to cause hanging during calibration on several occasions.

      (3) Remove the FSPro-specific controls from the custom config,
      for instance "hat-right".  I did this just to make sure it
      didn't try to interpret any of my "normal" buttons as those
      special FSPro inputs.

3.2 I assigned a key to a function, and now it's performing TWO functions!

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   The config screen allows you to assign _four_ different
   inputs/keys to the same function.  Click on "Primary Config" to
   cycle through the four pages of assignments.  It could well be
   that the key is assigned to perform that extra function on one of
   the secondary-quartinery config pages.

3.3 Pressing the "firegroup-2" key also centers my torso.  
    - Or, the FireGroup-2 doesn't work from my Thrustmaster.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   I got around this problem by changing the custom config have
   firegroup-2 be (-) on the keypad, rather than (/) on the keypad.
   Then, sending "KP-" from the FLCS worked also.

3.4 The jumpjet rotate keys don't work on my FLCS.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   It seems to have some problem with the concept of the "grey" keys,
   or something.  I redefined the custom config to use j/k/-/= to be
   left/right/down/up.  And of course, deleted - and + from
   controlling the throttle.

  From: aslagle@mindspring.com (Adam Slagle)
  Date: Wed, 9 Aug 1995 16:38:27 -0400

   The solution is to use RAW keyboard scan codes....with the RAW
   codes MW2 can't guess wrong about which INS or PGDown key you're
   pressing. (by the way, the scan codes are all in back of the manual.)

   One line of my .B50 file looks like this:

   BTN H3L /P RAW (#E0 #70) /R RAW (#F0 #E0 #70)   rem  JUMP LATERAL LEFT

   (I think that those are the right scan codes....I don't have my
   new .B50 file on this machine....)

3.5 I'd really like a key to move to the next weapon group.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   Although it doesn't appear to be documented anywhere, the
   apostrophe key (') will move to the first weapon of the next
   group, without firing anything.

3.6 Why does the torso always center itself when controlled with a joystick?  
    - Or, why is it so hard to aim with the joystick?

  From: willday@rom.oit.gatech.edu (Will Day)
  Date: 27 Jul 1995 09:50:38 -0400

   It's tying the torso _directly_ to the stick axis (centering
   the torso when the stick centers), rather than interpreting the
   stick movement as delta-change in movement.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 27 Jul 1995 04:08:14 GMT

   MechWarrior 2 uses the joystick in a unique way.  Rather than
   just reading 'left' or 'right' from the joystick and adding up
   values, MW2 turns your torso to the exact coordinates the
   joystick transmits (much like using a mouse).

   This technique allows for more precise aiming, and lets you
   hold your joystick in position to stay aimed.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 29 Jul 1995 16:41:41 -0400

   See, I read it differently.  To me, this technique requires
   more difficult aiming, because it forces me to hold my joystick
   in position to stay aimed.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 07:14:37 GMT

   Sorry you're unhappy with the joystick autocentering; this is
   not a bug.  I recommend using a mouse if you don't like the
   feel of joystick play.

   I understand that you are very unhappy about this, however many
   users are using joysticks and prefer autocentering.  We also
   had specific requests for autocentering in the design phase.

   I really wish we could make everyone happy; I'll certainly look
   into offering both choices.  However I am familiar enough with
   our joystick code to know that this is not trivial addition.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 11:19:17 -0400

   Not a bug, just a poor design decision.  I tried using the mouse
   for torso control and targeting, and it worked like a dream.  Why
   is wanting the same level of targeting control with the _joystick_
   such a far-fetched concept?!?

   Besides, suggesting I use the mouse rather than the joystick for
   torso/targeting is, at best, an inadequate solution.  My two hands
   are already engaged with the joystick and throttle, and reaching
   for the mouse during battle will get me killed.

   Interpreting the joystick in a delta-change manner isn't a
   non-standard method of control.  (1) The chassis movement is
   done this way. (2) Both EarthSiege and VWE control their torsos in
   this manner, with no forced-centering.

   In any case, now you're getting specific requests for
   non-autocentering.  Providing a choice for the gamer sounds like
   it's in order.

  From: "Tim Morten" 
  Date: 3 Aug 1995 22:59:12 -0800

   We are now actively looking at making the centering optional
   based on yours and others suggestions.

   It pains me to hear frustrated users .

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 7 Aug 1995 00:01:14 -0400

   It pains me to be frustrated, too. :-)

   I hope this does indeed make it to a patch.  I would suggest
   anyone else who would like this fixed to send a note to Tim
   (tmorten@activision.com) to show as much support as possible for
   a patch.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 4: The Simulation

4.1 The mech won't ever come to a complete stop.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 27 Jul 1995 05:29:01 GMT

   If you turn, the mech automatically powers up to
   enable motion (otherwise you could only turn torso while
   standing still).

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   If you're standing still, and cause any left/right movement on the
   joystick, the mech will speed up to about 10kph or so for a couple of
   seconds, and then drop back down to 0, assuming you stop moving the
   stick. :)  Also, if there's noise in your joystick card, it
   could be registering left/right movement to the game, in which case
   you'll always be slightly turning, and moving.

4.2 If I have no ammo, do I have to worry about overheating?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 28 Jul 1995 09:22:44 GMT

   If things get warm enough, you should eventually suffer pilot
   death.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   If you stay overheated for long enough, your mech _will_ explode,
   regardless of ammo.

4.3 Sometimes my jumpjets don't lift me up at all.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 28 Jul 1995 07:50:52 GMT

   Some planets have such high gravity that you can't get off the
   ground.

4.4 Why do the enemy mechs pick on me specifically?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 04:56:31 GMT

   They target the leader of the star.

4.5 Why is my right torso/arm ALWAYS the first thing to be destroyed?

  From: khill@cts.com (Kevin Hill)
  Date: Tue, 8 Aug 1995 17:08:10 GMT

   I sent a message to Tim Morton the other day about the frequent
   (read always) destruction of a mechs right arm.  He said that they
   are working on it and the technical explanation was because there
   was a problem with the random number generator.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   An obvious suggestion to get around this until a patch is released
   is to always use customized mechs that have NO weapons, ammo, or
   critical systems in the right torso/arm.  Place everything in the
   left/center torsos and arm, and anything you can fit in the legs.
   You rarely get hit in the legs. :)

4.6 Does the enemy AI have a sense of self preservation?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 03:35:31 GMT

   Yes; they will either flee or kamikaze if they have lost all
   weapons.

4.7 When I press 'm' to recenter the torso to the legs, why does it jerk?

  From: levram@engin.umich.edu (Michael Hardy)
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 17:14:43 GMT

   The legs are re-centering while your walking, so the legs have to
   turn while the torso re-centers, several times for the full re center.
   Press "C" for external view to see what's going on.  It makes much more
   sense than what you see in the cockpit.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 5: Problems

5.1 I don't get music in the game.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   Most of the game music is spooled directly off the CD, as regular
   (redbook) audio.  You'll only hear the music if you have the CD
   wired to a speaker in some manner.

     (1) With most of the recent sound cards, you can connect the CDROM
     drive to the sound card via an internal cable.

     (2) Or, you might be able to run a cable from the head-phones jack
     on the front of the drive into an input jack on the back of the
     sound card, if your card has one.

     (3) Plug headphones or speakers into the CDROM drive's headphone
     jack.

   Also, if you connect your CDROM audio into your sound card, be
   sure to check any mixer settings on the card, and make sure the
   CD-in is set to a reasonable volume.  For instance, on my SB Pro,
   the CD-in volume defaults to 0, and I have to raise the level at
   bootup time.

5.2 The CD only works in first slot of my multidisk CD drive.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 05:03:56 GMT

   We query the Microsoft CD extensions for the CD-ROM drive.  It
   only reports back one letter, and that's the first drive.
   Sorry; I hope it's not a major inconvenience.

5.3 The game crashes, and I get page frame errors.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   Try booting your machine without an expanded memory manager like
   QEMM or EMM386 loaded.  The game doesn't need one to run, and
   it's also been known to slow the game down a little bit.

5.4 I get a "critical write error on drive c:"

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 06:36:41 GMT

   Turn off SMARTDRV.

5.5 The game keeps locking up when I'm calibrating my joysticks.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   I had problems with calibrate locking up on me many times.  I did
   three things to help alleviate this:
    - Delete all the *.CAL files in the mech2 directory.  When you
      enter the sim next time it'll ask you to recalibrate.
    - Make sure you only have one joystick type defined, as they tend
      to conflict with each other.  For instance don't have "2-button
      joystick" and "Flightstick" both selected.
    - Boot up with a very minimized setup, long enough to calibrate
      the sticks, and then return to your normal boot setup

5.6 How much memory can the game make use of?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 27 Jul 1995 03:58:15 GMT

   RAM will provide a marginal improvement in frame rate, as less
   things will have to be swapped in and out at run time.
   Anything past 12MB has no benefit.

   None of the missions has more than 12MB total, so anything
   above won't really get used.

5.7 How can I improve the speed of the game?

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   Some ideas are:

   In the game:
     (1) Run at a lower resolution
     (2) Turn off details in the Combat Variables screen
     (3) Turn off the enemy damage display
     (4) Use a larger installation on the hard drive, so it doesn't
         have to load as much from the CDROM drive.

   In software:
     (5) Load as little as possible in autoexec.bat and config.sys
     (6) Use smartdrv to cache your HD.
     (7) Use smartdrv to cache your CDROM drive.  Be sure smartdrv
         loads _after_ MSCDEX in your autoexec.
     (8) Don't load an expanded memory manager (EMM) like QEMM and
         EMM386.  Despite what some of the documentation says, the
         game does not require EMM.  You'll often get faster
         performance without it.
     (9) Load UniVBE.  In some cases it includes a newer and better
         VESA driver than what comes on your video card.  You can get
         it from SciTech software (http://www.scitechsoft.com/) at:
            ftp://ftp.scitechsoft.com/uvbe51a.zip
    (10) Get a copy of video benchmark programs like VidTest and
         3D-Bench to see how your system rates.  They're available at:
            http://www.dfw.net/~sdw/3dbench.zip
            ftp://oak.oakland.edu/SimTel/msdos/screen/vidspd40.zip

   In hardware:
    (11) Get a faster processor. :)
    (12) Get a faster video card.  PCI is best, VLB next, with at least
         2meg onboard.  Some good choices might be Matrox Millenium,
         cards based on the ARK2000 chipset like the Hercules Stingray 64,
         cards based on the ET4000/wp32 chipset, and cards based on the
         S3 968 chipset like the Diamond Stealth 64 VRAM (NOT the
         Viper!)  Check out the benchmarks for some of these cards at:
            http://www.dfw.net/~sdw/bench.html
    (13) Get at least 16meg RAM.  Use EDO memory if you can.
    (14) Get a recent PCI motherboard without VLB.  Having the VLB
         slows down the PCI.  In addition, some older VLB-PCI boards
         had the PCI bus wired incorrectly, and were slowed down even
         more.  Early OPTi pentium chipsets also had performance
         problems.
    (15) Optimize settings in your motherboard's BIOS.  Be careful
         not to screw anything up, or put your machine in state where it
         won't even boot. :O  Read comp.sys.ibm.pc.hardware.chips for some
         information.  Also check out:
            http://www.dfw.net/~sdw/bios.html
            http://www.metronet.com/~rcollins/mrbios

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 6: Complaints
6.1 Why do the stars only have 3 mechs?  They're supposed to be _five_.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 28 Jul 1995 09:14:06 GMT

   We wanted to ensure performance on 486 computers.  The add-on
   will allow 5 mech stars.

6.2 I'm limited to only 10 weapons on a mech?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 28 Jul 1995 08:14:09 GMT

   The add-on will address this limitation.

6.3 The mechs don't fall down when they lose a leg.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 04:05:59 GMT

   We may do this in the add-on; it's a bit more complicated since
   we have to worry about falling on hills.

6.4 Why is the ER PPC shorter range than the ER Large Laser?

  From: opus@marconi.ih.att.com (Robin Kim)
  Date: Mon, 7 Aug 1995 16:40:22 GMT

   Despite what the game manual says, the ER PPC in actual play has a
   range of 1.25 km.  You can tell because the retical will turn red as
   a target enters this range.  I have hit and damage targets this far
   away.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 7: Network and Multiplayer-Gaming

7.1 Do I need more than one copy of the game to multiplay?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 03:57:02 GMT

   The current demo (on the game CD) requires two disks.  However,
   the full version of NetMech (coming this October), will support
   up to 8 players with only one CD.

7.2 Will the full network version directly support IPX, rather than
    requiring NetBios?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 04:45:42 GMT

   IPX will be the norm for the full NetMech version.  TCP/IP will
   be available in the Windows 95 version this Christmas.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 07:44:17 GMT

   The current demo require NetBios running on top of IPX.  The
   real NetMech version due this October will support IPX and
   (presumably) Kali.

7.3 Can I netplay between the demo and full version?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 28 Jul 1995 08:14:09 GMT

   No mixing I'm afraid.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 8: Extras

8.1 Where's the DEMO?  Is it OUT YET??

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 25 Jul 1995 05:20:55 GMT

   We are still in the process of trimming down MechWarrior 2's
   hefty 30MB worth of art resources into a reasonable size for
   the downloadable demo.

   Thank you to all those who have taken the time to flame me for
   not having the demo out; trust me: it's not my fault .  I
   want everyone to like my game!

   In any event, the director of the game says we will definitely
   get the demo out this week.  I apologize for the delays, and I
   encourage everyone to go check out the game, WHICH SHIPPED
   TODAY!!!

   I'll be posting here and everywhere else I can think of when
   the demo is available, so hang in there.  In the mean time, see
   if you can't grab a few minutes on your local software store's
   computer.

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   It's not out yet, we're still waiting.

   And no, that "mw2demo2.zip" file you found on an ftp site is not the 
   new demo, it's the one from a year ago - check the file dates.

8.2 I never saw the canyon wall that was shown in one of the screen shots.
   Did I miss something?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 28 Jul 1995 09:38:21 GMT

   The canyon wall got cut because it was too slow on 486 machines.  It
   might show up in the add-on if we do any Pentium specific stuff.

8.3 The computer has a nice voice.

  From: goffman@rain.org (Scott Goffman)
  Date: 5 Aug 95 05:28:00 GMT

   BTW, for those who are wondering about the woman who did the
   computer voice in Mech2:  Yes, she is as good looking as she
   sounds. :)

8.4 What machines/configurarations were used for testing?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 26 Jun 1995 06:28:08 GMT

   The testers have everything from 486-50 computers (not
   officially supported) to Pentium 120's.  We test on as many
   machines as possible, and there are a number of people areound
   the country beta testing as well.
   I have a 486-66 and a Pentium-90.

8.5 What programming platforms did you use to write the game?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 20 Jun 1995 23:41:48 GMT

   Oh no, now you've done it.  Given me an excuse to ramble endlessly
   that is .  We started using Borland's 16-bit real mode compiler,
   but about a year ago myself and another programmer here converted
   the program to use Watcom's 32-bit protected mode compiler (that is
   actually part of the reason we had to delay shipping).  The game is
   written in a mixture of C and assembly for optimum speed.

8.6 The credits mention "Special thanks to...Tim Morten (for the Second
    Coming)".

  From: goffman@rain.org (Scott Goffman)
  Date: 27 Jul 95 17:21:05 GMT

   Tim was instrumental in convincing Activision to NOT cancel the
   project after the first production team fell apart.
   In fact, the game would most likely not exist if he had not stepped
   in at a crucial time.

8.7 What's taken so long?

  From: Scott Goffman c/o umbles@mcl.ucsb.edu (Sergio Martin)
  Date: 18 Mar 1995 08:06:32 GMT

   Oof. This is a tough one. There are many factors that have led
   MW2 to this state. Here are a few: a) over-eager PR people hyping
   a game that was not even close to being done. This led to forced
   promises of release dates that were IMPOSSIBLE to make. b) lack of
   a design. There was no clear direction for the first year and a half
   on the game, and no solid style. c) Featuritis: A disease that often
   afflicts game developers, causing them to want to keep adding more
   and more features to a game, rather than debugging and shipping what
   they already have. d) Morale. As they fell further and further
   behind schedule, the programmers and artists felt less and less
   inclined to produce. This led to departures.

   The fact is that not ONE of the original mech team members was ever
   fired by Activision. They all left of their own accord to go to other
   companies.  I'm sure the Activision management has no interest in
   dispelling this particular myth.  :)

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 14 Jun 1995 22:02:25 GMT

   The code for MechWarrior was never 'scrapped.'  It was converted
   to protected mode so we could access more memory.  We have been
   developing non-stop for 3 years (and trust me, I'm tired ).

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   We had to convert the engine to protected mode before we could
   even begin to design missions.  Protected mode allowed us to
   access all available memory in a computer rather than just 640k.
   In the words of that lame wine commoercial: 'We will serve no wine
   before its time.'  On July 24th, it's time.

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 9: The Future

9.1 Is there a level editor?  Or, What add-ons are planned?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 23:34:26 GMT

   After we ship the main release the team will be splitting up to
   work on various projects including:

   Missions & Technologies add-on
   - New story, new mechs, new missions, more equipment options.
   - Also, possibly an enhanced mech editor and possibly a level
     editor.

   Multiplayer add-on
   - Expands the head-to-head play in the initial release to
     accomidate 8 players.
   - Specially designed missions for multiplayer play.
   - Allows for cooperative campaigns.
   - Possible support for TCP/IP.

   Windows 95/NT port
   - Support for Windows sound cards and video drivers.
   - Ability to run in a scaleable window.
   - Multi-threading.

   PowerMacintosh port
   - Support for Mac sound cards and video drivers.
   - Ability to run in a scaleable window.

   Foriegn Language versions
   - Translations into several languages

   and who knows where else MW2 will show up.  A game console?  A
   hardware accelerated 3D graphic card?  You just never know...

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 6 Jul 1995 03:56:25 GMT

   Narc beacons are slated for the add-on.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 28 Jul 1995 08:30:38 GMT

   The NetMech version this October will have around 10 new
   missions for multiplayer, and the 'Missions & Technology'
   add-on this Christmas will have around 15 new single player
   missions.

   In the mean time, we'll be releasing a mission editor sometime
   around October.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 07:42:04 GMT

   There will be:

   October:
   - NetMech
   - Level Editor

   November:
   - Win 95 version (discounted upgrade to DOS users)
   - Add-on #1

   Jan/Feb:
   - Add-on #2

9.1 Will the M&T disk work with the NetMech add-on?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 05:23:13 GMT

   Undecided as of yet.

9.1 I'm a CLANNER!  I want to invade the Inner Sphere!

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 4 Jul 1995 19:14:53 GMT

   Going back in time to the inner sphere invasion has been a
   popular request.  We're considering waays we might work this
   into the add-on.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 6 Jul 1995 03:56:25 GMT

   This seems to be the number one request, so I have a feeling
   that's the way we'll go.  We have to have some design meetings
   next month to kick off the add-on, so we won't be deciding for
   sure until then.

9.1 Will there be a  port of the game?

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 16 Jun 1995 02:06:18 GMT

   You asked about a non-mac PowerPC version.  We will support
   Windows NT, which runs nicely on PowerPC's.  This will be part of
   the Win95/WinNT version of the game that ships later this year.

   OS/2 has a lot of loyal followers, but the regrettable fact is
   that there is not a big enough game market for OS/2 to
   rationalize budgetting a port.  Perhaps this will change over the
   next year, but in the mean time Windows 95/Windows NT is going to
   be our focus.

  From: Tim Morten <72623.467@CompuServe.COM>
  Date: 16 Jun 1995 09:34:39 GMT

   There will be a Mac-OS PowerPC version of MechWarrior II
   available later in the year.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 25 Jun 1995 05:15:27 GMT

   We will be releasing a Windows 95/NT port later this year.  My
   personal goal is to get this version running on both SGI/MIPS
   R4x000 machines as well as DEC Alpha machines.  This version would
   be multi-threaded, and therefore capable of utilizing multiple
   processors.  (I spent a summer at Microsoft working on Windows NT,
   so this is a bit of a pet project of mine.)

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 22:28:50 GMT

   It's my understanding that there will be a coupon for a discounted
   upgrade to the Windows 95/NT version in the box with the DOS version.

   We'd release them simultaneously if we could; we just don't
   have the resources to complete both at the same time.

   Incidentally, multi-threading won't buy you anything unless you
   have multiple processors, so functionality-wise, the only
   difference between the DOS and Win 95/NT version is the host
   operating system.  It's not like you're getting a lesser
   product if buy the initial release.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 23:34:26 GMT

   After we ship the main release the team will be splitting up to
   work on various projects including:

   Windows 95/NT port
   - Support for Windows sound cards and video drivers.
   - Ability to run in a scaleable window.
   - Multi-threading.

   PowerMacintosh port
   - Support for Mac sound cards and video drivers.
   - Ability to run in a scaleable window.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 2 Jul 1995 23:42:55 GMT

   We won't be starting on the PowerMac port until after the
   initial release.  We're hopeful that we can finish before the
   end of the year, but if we hit any technical snags, it could
   take until January or February.

   Sorry to keep you waiting.  I'd rather set a realistic
   timeframe than create disappointment over missed release dates
   (not that the MechWarrior team has had any experience with that
   .)

9.1 Will there be an upgrade path from the DOS version to Win95/NT?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 23 Jun 1995 19:40:11 GMT

   Yes.  People who purchase the original product will not have to pay
   for a completely new copy for Windows. Pricing for the upgrade has
   not yet been determined, but it will be considerably less than the
   full price.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 05:46:02 GMT

   The Win95 version will be discounted to registered
   owners of the DOS version.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 31 Jul 1995 05:55:52 GMT

   MW2 for Win95 (discounted upgrade for registered users of DOS
   version) will definitely take advantage of accelerated
   blitting.  It isn't determined yet whether we'll support 3D
   acceleration, but I hope so .

9.1 Any plans for MW2 on Sony's Playstation?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 4 Jul 1995 20:54:02 GMT

   I'm hopeful that Activision will decide to port MEchWarrior II
   to a console such as the PlayStation.  If this were done, it
   would be modified somewhat to make it more arcade-like.

   One note about the PlayStation though: although it has a very
   good ability to push around flat-shaded polygons, it's texture
   mapping abilities are inferior to what we can do on a
   Pentium-90 with 16 megabytes of RAM.

9.1 Will Activision be doing a future Mechwarrior game?

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 19 Jun 1995 21:07:06 GMT

   I wish we could do MechWarrior III.  I'm afraid the 'Missions &
   Technologies' add-on will be the last BattleTech product from
   Activision.  FASA has teamed up with Spectrum Holobyte.

   I am hopeful that FASA will reconsider and let the MechWarrior II
   team put out a sequel when they hear from people who have played the
   game, but we'll have to wait and see on that one.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 22 Jun 1995 16:39:31 GMT

   I don't have e-mail addresses at FASA, but after people have had a
   chance to play the game, perhaps FASA will let us continue the
   series.  In the mean time, we will do some good add-ons that focus
   on filling out more aspects of the BattleTech universe and fixing
   any problems that people notice.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 24 Jun 1995 07:23:31 GMT

   I'm sorry to say that FASA has teamed up with another game company
   for future BattleTech products.  I'm hopeful that enough people will
   enjoy MechWarrior II for FASA to consider letting Activision do a
   sequel.

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 26 Jun 1995 06:38:46 GMT

   Actually FASA is involved in a lawsuit with Dynamix over
   EarthSiege.  We have a very good relationship with FASA.
   Although we may apply our 3D technology to other games, they
   won't have anything to do with fighting robots.

9.1 What about a MW2 movie?

  From: eastham@dseg.ti.com (Gary Eastham)
  Date: 29 Jun 1995 13:33:19 GMT

   Multiple screen plays have been submitted to New Line Productions.
   Supposedly, the lawyers are now doing their thing (whatever that
   would be...).

=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

Section 10: Net References
10.1 What Activision people involved with Mechwarrior are on the net?

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

  I've seen the following Activision people post to the newsgroups,
  or had their names/addresses mentioned by other Activision posters.

   Josh Resnick (Producer)
   jresnick@activision.com
   (Production: Producer)

   Tim Morten, programmer
   tmorten@activision.com
   72623.467@compuserve.com
   (Programming: Simulation Programmers)

   Scott Goffman
   3-D Animator
   Activision Studios
   Los Angeles, CA
   goffman@rain.org  OR  sgoffman@activision.com
   (Art: Shell Stills and Animations)
   (Packaging and Promotional Materials: Additional Cover Art)

   Ken Maxwell Hullett
   Associate Game Designer
   MechWarrior 2
   hullett@usc.edu
   khullett@activision.com
   (Production: Associate Game Designers)

   Sean Vesce, lead designer
   sean_vesce@activision.com
   (Production: Lead Game Designer)

   Dan Kamins
   dkamins@course2.harvard.edu
   (Programming: Programming Interns)

   John Keating, enemy logic
   john_keating@activision.com
   (Programming: Simulation Programmers)
   (Audio: Voice-Over Talent)

   J.J. Franzen, 3D geometry & mech designer
   jfranzen@activision.com
   (Art: 3-D Simulation Models and Animations)

   John Mamais
   On-Line Rep
   actsearch@aol.com

  From: Tim Morten 
  Date: 28 Jun 1995 02:33:38 GMT

   Several member of the MechWarrior II team have also agreed to
   respond to e-mails from anyone with questions.  We're in the
   last few weeks of production, so be patient with us in terms of
   replies.  We will try to answer every e-mail though.

   game logic - tmorten@activision.com -- THAT'S ME!
   enemy logic - john_keating@activision.com
   movies and still art - sgoffman@activision.com
   level designer - sean_vesce@activision.com
   3D geometry & mech designer - jfranzen@activision.com

  From: Will Day 
  Date: 9 Aug 1995 10:06:28 -0400

   These members of the team included their email address on the Dorcs 
   Web Pages:

   John A. Clarke
   75022.43@compuserve.com
   (Programming: Simulation Programmers)

   Michael H. Douglas
   mdouglas@activision.com
   (Programming: Simulation Programmers)

   Scott Etherton
   s.etherton@genie.com
   (Programming: Simulation Programmers)

   Sverre H. Huseby
   sverrhu@ifif.uio.no
   Wrote the 'gifsave' routines used in the game

   Dan Kamins
   dkamins@husc.harvard.edu
   (Programming: Programming Interns)
   Wrote the netdemo network shell

   John Keating
   marshall1@aol.com
   (Programming: Simulation Programmers)

   Tim Morten
   tmorten@activision.com
   (Programming: Simulation Programmers)

   David White
   dwhite@activision.com
   (Production: Associate Game Designers)
   (Programming: Additional Programming)

10.2 Where do Activision-Mechwarrior people usually read and/or post?

   USENET newsgroups:
     rec.games.mecha
     comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.strategic
     comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.action
     alt.games.mechwarrior2
     alt.mechwarrior2

   CompuServe Game Publishers B Forum, Activision section
   America Online's Activision area

10.3 On what ftp sites can I find Mechwarrior II info?

   Screen shots from the game:
      ftp://ftp.csua.berkeley.edu/pub/btech/incoming/
      Filenames: SIM*.GIF, MW2SIM*.GIF

   Screen shots, quicktime files, and FAQ:
      ftp://rom.oit.gatech.edu/pub/mw2/

10.4 What web pages are there about Mechwarrior II?

   Activision's Official Mechwarrior II web page
      http://www.activision.com/mech/home.html

   Gamewave's MW2 Pre-release Info
      http://wantree.com.au/gamewave/m2.html

   This FAQ, screen shots, and quicktime movies
      http://rom.oit.gatech.edu/~willday/mw2/

   Lou's Mech Warrior Info Page
      http://www.computer.net/~louish/mech.html

______________________________________________________________________________
Will Day     http://rom.oit.gatech.edu/~willday/
   =->  Mechwarrior 2 FAQ:   http://rom.oit.gatech.edu/~willday/mw2/  <-=
The thunder of their BattleMech's feet, the lightning
- From their weapons, and the blood spilled in their name
Created the Clan Spirit
    - The Remembrance, Passage 98, Verse 24, Lines 13-15

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