THE ACE OF HEARTS
Hard Drive Games Menu Program
One problem with all these games that can be run from a hard drive is actually
getting them to run! In our experience, if you've got a HD, then you've also
got an AUTO folder full of utils like UIS and G+PLUS, plus loads of accessories
like TurboST - so on the desktop, programs have a lot less available memory -
and most games get quite upset about that! The solution is to run your games
before all the utils and stuff start filling up the memory, i.e. in the AUTO
folder, and before all the other stuff in there.
So, you stick your loader in there. But what if you don't want to load that
game every time you boot up the HD? But once you've used up Control, Alternate,
and both Shift keys, you've got some problems, haven't you? Plus Alternate
acts to stop many hard drives from booting at all, i.e. ICD Hard Drive
How about a program which will load up only if you hold down Control, and will
then display a list of programs for you to choose? That's a bit more like it!
And that's exactly what ACEGAMER.PRG is. To add a program to the list displayed
when the menu loads, you simply edit the ASCII text file named ACEGAMER.INF
which should be in the root directory of your boot drive (normally C:).
The format of a typical ACEGAMER.INF file is like this...
A CUSTOM MESSAGE AT THE BOTTOM OF THE SCREEN
" Welcome to The Ace of Hearts Games Hard Drive Loader ( Select a Game ). "
n:\Intruder foti.prg Flight of the Intruder
n:\av8b av8b.prg AV8B Harrier Assault
n:\f_15_ii f15_ii.prg F-15 Strike Eagle II
n:\ssii silent_s.prg Silent Service II
n:\j_whites loader.prg Jimmy Whites WW Snooker
n:\deuteros deuteros.prg Deuteros
n:\millenum millenum.prg Millennum 2.2
...the first line containing the message within quotes is entirely optional,
and doesn't have to be the first line even if you do include it. Everything
within the quotes is displayed at the bottom of the menu screen. If you want
to have any part of the message in italics, bold, or inverted text, then use
the following control codes:
~4 Italics on ~5 Italics off
~G Bold on ~H Bold off
~I Inverted on ~J Inverted off
The next two lines are menu options. Each line is divided into three sections;
the PATHNAME, the FILENAME and the MENU TITLE. The pathname is the name of the
folder that the game is located in the above case,Flight of the Intruder is
located on the N:\ drive in 'INTRUDER', so that's 'n:\intruder'.The filename
is the name of the program that you run to load the game, in this case,
The menu tittle is what you want displayed on the menu screen for that option.
You can use the above control codes in the menu title if you wish.
You MUST specify the full drive and folder in the pathname, as popimenu
uses the ':' part of the pathname to recognise it as such. And if you miss
out the filename or menu title, the program is liable to either crash or
go a little wobbly on you... the file can be created using any text editor
or word processor (in ASCII mode).
Hope it's of some use, and if you have any ideas for additions to the program,
let us know, and I'll update it.
To install the menu, just drag it into your hard drive's AUTO folder, and use
a program such as AUTOSORT to move it to the top of the list.
Now create a ACEGAMER.INF file listing all the games you wish to have appear
in the menu and you're away! Remember you have to hold down Control while the
HD is booting to make the menu appear. The menu currently does not work in
high res, future versions will. Also, before loading any file, it sets the
screen to low res, as this will be what most games want.
Ace of Hearts....