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Installing and running MechCommander / Desperate Measures / DH / another sets

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Last update 30.08.20. Part 1.

Tested on Windows 10 x64.

1. Download the disc with the original game here Disk is needed only in order to formally launch this or that campaign.
2. To run the game in the process, mount it in Daemon Tools Lite
3. Download the campaign that interests you

*. You can also install the russian language if you want - It's partially compatible with other non-original campaigns. Replace 4 files ART.FST, MISC.FST, MISSION.FST, SHAPES.FST. .EXE does not need to be replaced.

4. In the Control Panel -> select the Category -> Programs -> Turn Windows features on or off -> Legacy Components -> enable DirectPlay. If you don't want to mess with it, but as a result you will end up with crumpled titles (at least), find b DirectDraw = TRUE in PREFS.CFG and replace TRUE with FALSE. Set the read-only option in the file properties.

* (optional) 5. An important point. If you are experiencing any of the 3 problems below. Otherwise, you can skip it.

5.1. Fixes a bug with a mess mouse lag at resolutions below 1024x768.
5.2. Problems with 640x480 / 800x600 resolution if you want to play in full screen mode without small interface elements.
5.3. Makes the zoom option work fine in the game - without the .dll it is often impossible to use the mouse in this mode.

Download DDrawCompat from here and put it in the folder with the selected campaign. Or take it from the official site - The latest suitable version at the moment is 0.2.1. The test version from 14.07.20 is not compatible with the game.

* (optional) 6. To run all packages I recommend using MCXOriginal.exe or, in case of MCX Original, MCX.exe. Press Esc once at startup.

Returning to point 5. On the individual specifics of separate packages in combination with .dll. The problem as a whole lies in what kind of campaign this or that set of maps uses at its core. tileset from the original Port Arthur campaign or Desperate Measures. The problems are related to the original one.

MCG Exodus & Turncoat.

1. In the case of MCG Exodus & Turncoat there may be some twitching of the picture when starting the original campaign. If this moment is annoying, then in this case delete / do not put the .dll in the folder and use it to launch MCX800x600.EXE. The menu and control area will occupy 2/3 of the screen in 1920x1080. The warzone will function normally in full screen mode.

2. When launching the Expansion campaign, the .dll will be required.

MCX Original.

1. In case of original campaign .dll is needed.
2. In the case of Expansion, on the contrary, it will interfere and create an analog of problems in the spirit of 1 point of Exodus & Turncoat. The recommendation is the same - go to 800x600.

MCG Xenocide & BengalLancers.

1. In case of original campaign .dll is needed.
2. In the case of Expansion, on the contrary, it will interfere and create an analog of problems in the spirit of 1 point of Exodus & Turncoat. The recommendation is the same - go to 800x600.

MCG X-ray & DSCRaid.

.dll will be required in both. At the same time, some screen twitching may remain in campaigns, but there is no other way out - both in 640x480 and 800x600 without .dll, mouse lags and zoom not working are possible.

The Repulse.

.dll is not required.

Darkest Hours 4.2.

The situation is similar to MCG X-ray & DSCRaid - .dll is required in both. In the original, minor screen twitching is possible. In Expansion, they are more visible. Otherwise, unfortunately, in the same 800x600 in Expansion, problems with the mouse are possible.

Ammo pack add-on, aka "Lostech". Part #1.

Modification "Lostech" has been updated to version 0.31. 24 new types of weapons, also carries out a significant rebalancing of both equipment in general and the weapons of opponents in particular. Currently only compatible with Darkest Hours 4.2. Will not work with standalone campaigns or the original game.

Known bugs - the mini-map is displayed fully explored, when the mission just started.

After was an update.


--- Quote ---try this prototype

or better this, more chances of working if not extracted last one

that should work on other campaign versions besides Darkest Hours, if anyone tries it, report here

specially should work on the original one since its tested with its loadouts
--- End quote ---

Version 0.4 has been released. Checked Prototype B. Raw at the moment. Other campaigns, remember, can be found here:

Several bugs were found.

1. Menu glitch.
2. Restarting any pack results in an error.
3. When launching packs other than MCX Original, the tabs for mechs, pilots, weapons and vehicles will be empty and virtually unavailable for interaction.

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Ammo pack add-on, aka "Lostech". Part #2.

The mod has been updated to version 0.4C and is now fully compatible with MCX Original, Xenocide & BengalLancers. Details in v04.txt. Other assemblies are still being tested. The mod is not compatible with the russian version, as well as with DH 4.2. For that purpose use the previous version.

Known bugs.

Xenocide & BengalLancers:

1. Some of the vehicle pictures can be displayed on the right, although the vehicle is not yet available.
2. The Gauss Rifle may display as if it ran out of ammo. To fix it remove it from the mech and put it back on again. This should help. The bug is planned to be fixed in the next version.

--- Quote ---That happens because I changed C gauss rifle to use same ammo as IS one, however the campaign start file still has the shadowcat with the now-unused clan ammo.- I will fix that but it tkes away the slot for one future weapon...
--- End quote ---

3. If the path to the game directory is too long an error may occur and the game will crash.

*. In the case of launching a series of solo missions the game can theoretically crash. 50/50. However, the problem here may not lie in the modification itself, but in the fact that, by definition, they are not working in one or another pack, including DH.

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Ammo pack add-on, aka "Lostech". Part #3. / Launcher plans.

Q1. 0.5 will work with each pack, right?
Q2. 0.6 will have also possibility to load, for example, MW3 campaign from DH? Not only current separate packs?


--- Quote ---A1. Darkest Hours release is my priority, after Darkest Hours is confirmed to work, I will see how much work is making others work. If not they will be playable as savegames in 0.6.
A2. Maybe. Depends on how good I am at reordering campaigns.
--- End quote ---

In version 0.5-0.6 it is planned to add support for the rest of the campaigns, but the primary priority is Darkest Hours 4.2. In 0.6 it is also possible that campaigns will be highlighted that are currently not presented as separate "standalone packs", for example, a campaign that is dedicated to the events of MechWarrior 3.

Because a separate launcher for setting up and launching campaigns, in particular, does not exist while it is planned to implement a crutch solution - to load a particular campaign through a pre-configured  savegame. From the side disadvantages of such a decision - the specific campaign may not have a clear end, i.e. at some point it can go to another.

--- Quote ---"ARES" part of original campaign, try that.

"New Life" mission, also try this one.
--- End quote ---
You can test two attached files for now.

RizZen by other hand is looking for people to help create a launcher. Basically, it needs the following options:

1. Choosing which campaign to start, Original, Expansion, Darkest Hours, Bengal, Repulse, ...
2. It is possible to select one particular solo mission or campaign that was part of DH, such as the MW3 events.
3. Enable / disable the add-on for ammunition from Nemo.
4. Enable / disable the addition to the view area.
5. Change the screen resolution in different proportions.

--- Quote ---What I need is files to work on. So when anyone can create a simple game launcher with the intended functions I although need the complete source and maybe software for further development. I need not just the exe file then. But all the DLL files, plaintext and basic code.

It must be editable and update able and I need those functions:

- renaming game files
- doing some edits in plaintext files
- switching files in subfolders as a plus maybe
- starting the game execution with the resolution players desire
- offering options for all changes that can be done in PREFS.Cfg.

Before I have something like that for mechcommander I simply can not activate the full potential darkest hours could offer.

There are more than 500 missions in it. You can play just 130 campaign missions... 370 only available as solo missions. Even whole campaigns that where never released like Mechwarrior 3 campaign or 'the first offense.

When you asked for specs. I need the exe launcher with source code.
--- End quote ---

The last paragraph means, as an option, the transition of the source code to assembler, and from it to C ++.

Perhaps somebody can use the old mcshell as a core for these purposes.

--- Quote ---What I need is the exe with prototype functions and a simple user interface.

With source code and possibilities for me to develop it further.
--- End quote ---

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Some other links and information.

About the keys in the original MechCommander, which, incl. seasoned veterans of the series, they rarely use.

1. To save ammo you can press A - then only energy weapons will be used.
2. Pressing 1/3 on the numpad - shoot in the leg.
3. Pressing 8 on the numpad - shoot the head.
4. In order for the minelayer to lay mines, press F.

Read more about aiming at certain parts of the Mech and myths related to this issue:
About mines:

5. Walkthrough and useful hints. Original MechCommander & Desperate Measures. At the moment on russian only.
*. Mirror of this topic on russian -


1. MCG Mission Viewer in Unity -
2. Optional visual sight & weapon range. Build 0.1 alpha -
3. Other utilities, including mcshell -
4. Different source codes:


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