We have some extremely exciting news today. HCl has helped us reach a goal we've been looking forward to for more than ten years. He managed to get Armada Proving Grounds running over the internet earlier this year, but the actual Armada game was a much more difficult process. HCl managed to add joystick support to Armada a few months back, and we've been eagerly anticipating today's announcement ever since. With his modified DOSBox exe, Armada can now be played over the internet against a fellow Wing Commander fan. One-on-one battles, two player cooperative missions and sector-wide strategic campaigns are now available. Here's how to do it.
More than eight years ago, people were eagerly setting up squadrons and tournaments in anticipation of playing Prophecy or Armada online. You can read about one such league in July 1997 here. Unfortunately, Prophecy's multiplayer component was removed and Armada was ahead of its time. Armada was developed before the modern world wide web existed and more than a year before the launch of Windows 95. LOAF and I had to confront ambitious fans with the bad news about playing Armada in Windows or on the internet many times. Fortunately the circumstances have changed, so now it's time for some long overdue fun!
- Download DOSBox and configure it with our walkthrough. To play Armada, expanded memory must be set to ems=false in the dosbox.conf file. ipx=false must also be changed to ipx=true before playing online. Installation varies depending on the version of Armada and specific configuration. Visit our Tech Support Forum if you need further assistance.
- Download the joystick/ipx patch and unzip it into your Armada directory. This will change the execution command from Armada to Armadadb. You should test the game to see if it loads and you can play. DOSBox will probably need to be increased to around 6000 cycles (Control+F12) in order for the game to run smoothly. Calibrate the joystick by pressing ALT+O.
- Download the DOSBox netbios patch and unzip it to the DOSBox directory. Back up the old dosbox.exe file, and rename HCL's executable to dosbox.exe. You will use this new file when running DOSBox.
- If you have a router, you will probably need to forward port 213 to the computer you'll be playing on. Check the instruction manual or manufacturer's website if you've never done something like this before. The process varies depending on the router's brand. Make sure UDP data is being forwarded.
- Find someone else to play from the Forums or #Wingnut. One player will have to type "ipxnet startserver" in DOSBox. The player types "ipxnet connect IP" with the IP address of the other player in place of IP. Both players start Armadadb, go to Multiplayer and select Net Play. After inputting callsigns, the players should see each other in the username pane. Use the in-game buttons and commands to select your game type and play!
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