Hi PaulG! S!
Welcome to the wonderful world of EAW and the wacky world of the EAW Forum!
Here's the direct link to the thread that Gen Savage mentioned: Sorry I'll Try Again, Recommended Downloads?.
But first (quickly):
[...I need the 1.2 patch right?]
Yes. This will let you do a number of things. First, if you wish to play online, it'a s necessity (i.e. you can't play without it on the Zone!.........I mean you REALLY are required to have it because the Zone software doesn't support EAW 1.0 or 1.1! Come to think of it, I'm not sure, but I don't think you can play online ANYWHERE with ANYBODY who has 1.2 unless you have the same due to the EAW 1.2 file checker, which makes sure all the online players in a game have the same flight data. This file checker is designed to make sure you don't have CFS-style online cheating-----where apparently you could run into a plane that turns like a Spit 1, zooms around like an Me262, etc. Anyway I don't think you'll find very many people online without 1.2!). Online or offline, 1.2 let's you change resolutions and seems to have improved AI levels as well (especially in some of their maneuvers). There are other changes, all of which are found in the Readme File that comes with the 1.2 patch.
Yes, there are several different terrains now available. You will find more information in the message thread listed above. But briefly, here are some of your terrain choices:
Redrawn Stock EAW Terrain
1) "Enhanced" Terrrain (darker, richer than the standard----a.k.a. Terrain 2)
2) "Winter" Terrain (snow!)
3) "Autumn" Terrain (more reddish and brown hues)
4) "Mediterranean" Terrrain (sparse vegetation, almost desertlike?)
"Imported Terrain"(from CFS)
1) "Regular" Imported Terrain
2) "Autumn" Imported Terrain (more reds and browns-----this may only be at beta stage)
3) "Winter" Imported Terrain (snow)
Mostly blue water with small islands! (small bugs that cannot be dealt with yet such as inter-island railroads!.......these I think, are 3D objects and Microprose is keeping the code for 3D objects secret!)
For more info on Terrain usage, try the following thread Swimming In The Add-On Sea, there is a reply in that thread which has some explanations.
[Can you run it at 1024x768?]
Yes. IF you have the EAW 1.2 patch. And of course, your monitor and system must support higher resolutions. For more info, try this link: Screen Res!
[...make the fonts larger at the higher resolutions?]
Well, unfortunately that's the bad news about the higher resolutions! The answer is no. At least, AFAIK, nobody has figured out how to do it. Or if they have, they haven't shared it with me!
[...let me know of all the tweaks and downloads I need...]
Well the Recommended Downloads list in the thread mentioned does a pretty good job of it! (if you wonder just how many great add-ons there are for EAW, as you read the list remember that there are MORE that I didn't list because they weren't "essential" to the sim, but would still be desirable!) But I would say that it may well be better to start off with no add-ons at first. Then just slowly install one at a time. That way you avoid feeling "inundated" by add-ons, as well as gaining both an appreciation for and an understanding of how each one improves the sim. If I was going to suggest a minimum number of add-ons and things, I would go with these:
1) the EAW 1.2 patch, of course
2) MeatWater Soundpack
3) extra skins
4) new gunsight
5) either ECA 1.4/Control Panel 2.0 or ECA Online. These are beneficial because of the revised flight models and even better, the revised gun muzzle velocities. I would recommend staying away from the B-26, Stuka, He111 etc. for the time being if you have ECA/Control Panel, since you might find the mission structure a little confusing (EAW is not really set up for bomber missions-----you will still get assigned fighter-style missions like sweeps and escorts, even in the He111 or the Stuka!).
[This message has been edited by JWC (edited 01-29-2000).]