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Version 1.0 beta 6

By Matthew Hershberger
www.macsoftware.net/users/mjh

Introduction:
Stratega is an Internet board game based on the classic Stratego by Milton Bradley. At the beginning of the game you have 40 pieces, of 12 different ranks. You place each of the 40 pieces anywhere in the bottom 4 rows of the board. Your opponent does not know the rank of any piece until it is brought into battle. The object of the game is to capture your opponent's flag before they capture yours. For complete rules see "Rules for Stratega", under the Apple menu in Stratega.

Connecting to other players:
To begin a game, you must connect with another player over the Internet. There are two ways to do this: from within Stratega and with GameRanger, a free online service for Mac gamers to meet and compete, created by Scott Kevill (www.gameranger.com).
In Stratega, there are two players: the host and the guest. The host moves first and decides if either or both of the optional tournament rules are on (see "Rules for Stratega", under the Apple menu in the Stratega application, for more information).

Connecting using Stratega:
To start a game from within Stratega, it helps to have some kind of live chat program, such as AOL Instant Messenger, so you can communicate with your opponent before the game.
First, the host must start a game. You do this by choosing "Host Game..." from the File menu. After you've set the various options for the game, the game window opens and it is time for the guest to join. You join a game be choosing "Join Game" from the File menu, and either adding a new player or selecting a player you have already added to the list. You'll need the host's IP address to connect. The host can get his/her current IP address by selecting "Copy IP Address" from the Edit menu while the game window is open.

Note: IP addresses can change every time you log on to the Internet, depending on your ISP (Internet Service Provider). Some ISPs offer static IP addresses, which will never change, but others, such as AOL, change your IP address every time you sign on. This is why it is helpful to have a live chat program. However, I recommend skipping all this and just using GameRanger, which makes it very easy to find and connect to other players.

Connecting using GameRanger:
From GameRanger, the host must choose "Gather Game" from the Chat menu. After choosing various settings for the game, your game will appear in a list of currently open games, and the guest can join simply by double-clicking the game from the list. It's very simple, and this is how I recommend connecting to other players.

Other features:
Now that you've started a game, you can try some of the other features in Stratega.
Chat:
Stratega has a built-in chat system. Choose "Show Chat" from the File menu, and you can talk with - and taunt - your opponent right from Stratega.
Statistics:
Choose "Game Stats" from the File menu to see information on the current game.
Replaying moves:
If your opponent just took a turn and you missed it, you can replay the move by choosing "Replay Last Move" from the File menu.
Forfeiting:
If you are sure you cannot win the game and wish to surrender, you can choose "Submit Defeat" from the File menu. Your opponent will be declared the winner and the game will end.
Saving and opening games:
Stratega lets you save games in the middle and resume play later. Choose "Save Game..." from the File menu to save the game. Only the host can save games. To prevent cheating, saved games are encrypted with the password set in the guest's Preferences window.
Note: saved games are encrypted with the password the guest has set at the beginning of the game. Changing the password in the middle of a game will have no effect on any saved games.
To open a game, simply double-click it in the Finder. The game window will open in Stratega and you will see a bunch of pieces with "?" on them. This is because the game is encrypted (see above). After the guest connects, you can click the Done button. This will send the saved game to the guest to be decrypted. If the guest still has the same password set in the Preferences window as when the game was saved, Stratega will automatically decrypt it and begin the game. Otherwise, it will prompt the guest to enter the correct password.
Saving and opening setups:
Before the game begins, you can save your setup so you can use it again later. Choose "Save Setup..." from the File menu. Setups do not need to be complete to save them. This is convenient if your opponent is disconnected before the game can begin.
Note: even though you can save and reuse setups, I recommend not using the same setup too often. Experiment with many
different kinds of setups. If you use the same setup a lot, your opponents will learn how to easily beat you.
Revealing your setup:
After a game is over, you can show your remaining pieces to your opponent by choosing "Reveal Setup" from the File menu.

System Requirements:
Mac OS version 7.1 or greater
4 MB free RAM
Open Transport version 1.1 or greater
QuickTime 2.5 or later (only necessary to view the three additional boards)
Note: Stratega may not work properly behind a firewall.

Contact information:
Send any feedback regarding Stratega to mhershberger@mac-addict.com. If you like Stratega, send me some email. If you have any suggestions for new features, I'd love to hear them, too.

Acknowledgements:
Stratega uses the Processes plugin for REALbasic, written by Seth Dillingham.
Special thanks to Dustin Mierau, Alex Hershberger, Rob Hawkins, and the team at REAL Software (www.realsoftware.com).

You can find new versions of Stratega, along with other software I've made, at <http://www.macinsearch.com/users/mjh>.

Disclaimer:
In no event will the author of this software be liable for any special, incidental, or consequential damages resulting from possession, use, or malfunction of this product.


Original file name: Read Me - converted on Thursday, 13 January 2000, 18:32

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