PIRATES! GOLD EDITOR
Timothy C. Benner, MIT 88
1. OVERVIEW: This utility allows alterations to saved game files
for the Microprose game "Pirates! Gold," including party status,
personal status, noble titles, ships, towns, and national politics.
It also provides an informational map and color-coded ship's log for
the current game. The interface is designed for convenience and
ease of use. It requires no special installation.
2. REQUIREMENTS: This program requires VGA graphics to operate.
Specifically, it runs in 640 x 480 16-color mode. It will not
function on a computer which will not support this mode. It also
requires a mouse. It uses less than 200K of RAM.
3. GENERAL USE: To activate a button, click on it with the mouse
or press the key corresponding to the underlined letter. To speed
up the introductory and exit screens, press a key or click a mouse
any [EXIT] button.
4. MAIN SCREEN: This screen displays the current path, lists the
saved games in the path and the pirates associated with them, and
offers eight option buttons. The following options are available
from the main screen:
A. Change (P)ath: Change the current directory for loading
and saving games. When entering a directory name, include
the drive specification (e.g. "C:\GAMES\PIRATES"). This
also allows moving games from one directory to another, by
loading a game, changing the path, and saving in the new
directory. For convenience, EPIRATE.EXE should be placed
in your "PIRATES! GOLD" directory with your saved game
files to reduce the need to change directories.
B. (A)lter: Go to the alterations screen to alter the current
game. See 5 below.
C. (T)owns: Go to the town screens to examine and/or alter
any of the towns in the current game. See 6 below.
D. (M)ap: Go to the map screen to examine the map and any of
the towns in the current game. See 7 below.
E. L(O)g: Go to the log screens to look at the ship's log.
See 8 below.
F. (L)oad: Load an existing saved game from the current path.
For this to work, a pirate's name must be highlighted in the
pirate list at the bottom of the screen. To select a pirate,
click on a name with the mouse. Alternately, double click a
pirate's name to load the game immediately. Loading takes a
few seconds, and a "Please Wait" message will appear.
G. (S)ave: Save the currently loaded saved game to disk via the
current path. You will also be offered this option whenever
you attempt to load a new game or exit the program without
first saving the current game file, if it was altered.
H. E(X)it: Exit the program via an information screen.
5. ALTERATIONS SCREEN: This screen allows a variety of alterations
to the pirate and his band. Changes are made by incrementing or
decrementing toggles or number values. To change a toggle or a
number, click on one of the arrows to either side, which act as
buttons. The left arrow decrements; the right arrow increments.
A. General Info: The pirate's name, nationality, time period,
and difficulty level appear in the upper left corner. This
information cannot be altered.
B. Party: Change the number of men (8-700), cannon (0-150),
group gold (5,000-1,000,000), or tons of food, goods, or
hides/tobacco/sugar (0-full cargo hold).
C. Personal: Change the amount of personal gold (5,000-
1,000,000), the number of acres of land (0-12,750), or the
pirate's special skill (Fencing, Navigation, Gunnery, Wit
and Charm, or Medicine).
D. Titles: Change the military/noble titles awarded by each
nation, from None to Duke.
E. Ships: Change the number (1-8), type (None - Galleon), and
damage status (OK - Hull Leaking) of ships in the pirate's
fleet. Only the last listed ship may be changed to None, and
only the first None may be changed to a real ship type. Only
existing ships may have their damage status changed.
F. Cargo Space: The amount of cargo space on all the pirate's
ships (total, in use, and empty) appears below the ship list.
This may not be altered directly, but it changes whenever any
ships, cannon, food, goods, or hides/tobacco/sugar change.
G. Mission: Information on the current mission, if any, appears
next to the cargo information. This includes the mission's
object, its town of origin, and the town where its target
lies. If the object reads "Completed," the mission has been
completed, but the pirate has not returned to get credit for
it. If there is no current mission, this space reads "None."
H. Politics: Change any two nations' relations with each other
by clicking the mouse on either of their two intersections.
These relations may be Peace, Allied, or War.
I. [RESET]: Restore the pirate's previous, unaltered values.
These values go back to the last disk access, either load
J. [EXIT]: Return to the main screen.
6. TOWN SCREENS: These screens display all the towns in the current
game, showing their name, owner, forts (0-4), troops (10-600),
citizens (200-9900), economic status, and gold (0-500,000). Any
item other than the name may be changed by clicking on the
appropriate value with the mouse. The left button decrements,
and the right button increments. The locations of the Treasure
Fleet and the Silver Train appear in the lower left corner. The
Up and Down arrows scroll through the list one town at a time, the
[PgUp] and [PgDn] buttons move to the beginning or the end of the
list, and the [EXIT] button returns to the main screen.
7. MAP SCREEN: This screen displays a map of the Caribbean and all
towns in the current game. Towns are color-coded by nationality.
(Red = Spanish, White = English, Blue = French, Yellow = Dutch)
The town from which the game was saved has a large cross through
it. A town with either the Treasure Fleet or the Silver Train
in it has extra yellow highlights on all four sides. To see the
contents of a town, click on it with the mouse. This will show
the town's name, forts, economic status, gold, nationality,
soldiers, citizens, and other contents, such as the Treasure
Fleet, the Silver Train, a wife, or an informant. The current
time period and the number of men in the pirate's band appear in
the upper right corner for easy reference. The [EXIT] button in
the lower right corner returns to the main screen.
8. LOG SCREENS: These screens display the ship's log fify entries
at a time, beginning with the first fifty. Entries are color-
coded by topic. The years associated with the log entries on a
given screen appear in the lower left corner of that screen.
Note that a game file contains no more than the last 256 entries,
so the log for a long-running game may begin a few years after
the beginning of the game. Button commands are as follows:
A. [Home]: Go to the beginning of the log.
B. [End]: Go to the end of the log.
C. [PgUp]: Page backward in the log.
D. [PgDn]: Page forward in the log.
E. [EXIT]: Return to the main screen.
9. PRINTING: This document is formatted for a three-page printout.