VGA Planets HOST Online Docs

Section 1


Section 1

0 Copyright Notice
1 Bugs fixed
2 Doserrorlevel
3 Auxhost
4 Climate Death Rate
5 UFO Objects
6 Language Files
7 Friendly Codes
8 Minefield Friendly Codes
9 Misc. Friendly Code Rules
10 Missions
11 Hyper drive Ships
12 Engine Tech Shield Bonus
13 Data Warnings
14 Friendly Code Battle Order

Section 2

15 Planets Attacking Ships
16 Disable Torpedo System
17 Cheaters
18 Scan Range
19 No Fuel
20 Warp Wells
21 Ground Attack
22 Sensor Scan Range
23 Dark Sense
24 Cloaking Ships
25 Anti-Ship Mine Fields
26 Mineral Mines
27 Isotope Trans-Uranium Mutation Rate
28 Taxes
29 Natives


Section 3

30 Long Range Sensors and Distress Calls
31 Enemy Planets
32 Host Log File
33 Structure Decay
34 No Money Fighters
35 Cyborg Assimilation Rate
36 Password Disable
37 Science Ships (Climate chargers)
38 Climate
39 Glory Device
40 Super Spy Deluxe
41 Loki Class Destroyer
42 Cobol Class Research Vessel (Fuel Scooper)
43 Bio Scanner
44 Aries Class Transport
45 Lady Royale
46 Super Star Destroyer
47 Advanced Cloak
48 Ion Storm
49 Chunnel
50 Tow Capture
51 Unhappy Natives
52 Cloaked Ships Can Attack
53 Hidden Mine Fields (Ion Storms)
54 No High ASCII Friendly Codes
55 Exploding Tow Ship
56 New Race Names
57 Ship Build Queue
58 Priority Build Points
59 Ionic Pulse
60 Mine Hits May Slowdown Starships
61 Messages Set To Host
62 Misc. Info
63 Hconfig Settings Explained
64 UFO Programming Issues

(0) VGA Planets HOST 3.22

Copyright 1992 -- 1997
By Tim Wisseman

HOST.EXE is protected under the copyright laws of the United States of America and by International Copyright Law.

The HOST.EXE program and support files and file formats are owned by and remains the property
of Tim Wisseman the copyright holder.

All VGA Planets players and hosts are granted the royalty-free use of HOST.EXE. The HOST program may be distributed freely by all possible means.

The VGA Planets server HOST.EXE and It's configuration program HCONFIG.EXE are royalty-free programs. They may be used and given out free of charge. You can download the latest version from the:

The VGA Planets Web Site:

Tim Wisseman's Email address is:

The VGA Planets client program PLANETS.EXE 3.00 is a shareware program. Players are asked to please register PLANETS.EXE.

Tim Wisseman
PO Box 204
North Fork
CA 93643

VGA Planets is a player supported program.My thanks to everyone that registered!

(1) Bugs fixed:

SEE: HOST322.TXT for a complete bug fix list.

This files comes with all new host releases.


Host returns a DOS errorlevel 1 if there is a host crash.


Addon hooks for 3rd party programmers.
These are 3 shells outs that are build into HOST.EXE for 3rd party programmers. These INI files are plain text files that can be edited with a normal text editor. Host runs each line in the INI files as a shell event. The AUXHOST1.INI events take place after all the player commands are assimilated into the host and all cheat checks are done. The AUXBC.INI events take after movement as before combat, these events are used by 3rd party combat programs like TKF and AVCR. The AUXHOST2.INI events take place just before the RST files are made (after all normal host commands are finished). Host will only try to shell if these INI files exist.

(4) Climate Death Rate:

If the "Climate death rate" is greater than 0% then:

Desert worlds now support at least 101 - ( planet_temp ) clans.

Ice worlds now support at least 1 + ( planet_temp ) clans.

Rebels: ice planets can support 9,000,000 rebel colonists on ice planets. An ice planet is any planet with a temp of 19 or less.

All humanoid type races do best on a type 50 planet ( Temperate - warm ).

The Crystalline race does best on temp 100 ( Desert World ). The Siliconoids also like temp 100 worlds. Both races have their maximum growth rate on hot worlds.

The Lizards are unable to regulate their body temp so they to like type 50 planets the best.

Four races are able to withstand desert climates well enough to support a small desert outpost of 6,000 colonists. These races are the Robots, Rebels, Colonists of Man and the Fascists

The Rebels are able to build outposts that support up to 9,000,000 colonists on ice planets.An ice planet is any planet with a temperature of 19 or less.

All other races can only have one clan on a desert or arctic planet.

There are three ship classes that are able to transform a planet's climate just by orbiting it. Each ship will change the climate type by 1 each turn. No special code or mission needs to be set.

Bohemian Class Survey Ship: Will make planets warmer until climate type 50 is reached.

Eros Class Research Vessel: Will make a planet cooler until climate type 50 is reached.

Onyx Class Frigate: Will make any planet turn into a hot boiling pool of rock and desert (temp 100).

Ships which are transforming the climate of a planet will report the temperature of the surface of the planet each turn.

(5) UFO Objects:

This document does not cover UFO objects, UFO objects are only created by 3rd party addon authors. Please see the addon doc of the addon that uses addons. Programs such as JUMPGATE by Dan and Dave produce UFO objects.

(Also See (64) for UFO Programming issues)


Host uses then LANG.PLN language module so that languages other than English can be used by the host program. There are currently Spanish, German and Italian versions of the LANG.PLN file This file is placed in the same directory as HOST.EXE. No other program uses the LANG.PLN file.

The source code to LANG.PLN is public and can be downloaded from the VGA Planets home web page at:


(Most of these codes will only work if you are a registered player)

Codes dealing with deep space mine fields:
These control then number of torpedoes that are
coveted and laid as a mine field:
"mdh" mine drop half your torps
"mdq" mine drop one quarter of your torps
"md1" mine drop 10 torps
"md2" mine drop 20 torps
"md3" mine drop 30 torps
"md4" mine drop 40 torps
"md5" mine drop 50 torps
"md6" mine drop 60 torps
"md7" mine drop 70 torps
"md8" mine drop 80 torps
"md9" mine drop 90 torps
"md0" mine drop 100 torps

"miN" will lay a minefield in an enemies ID, were N is the ID number of the enemy that you want the mines laid as. N = ( 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,a,b) These mines will not effect the enemy race, but they can and will damage you if you fly through the field.

"msc" If you mission is set to mine sweep this code will cause the ship to scoop up the mines and convert them back into torpedoes.

Glory device codes:

"pop" This code will cause the D19 or Saber class starships to EXPLODE after moving, if they have fuel.

"trg" This code will cause the D19 or Saber class starships to EXPLODE after moving, if they have fuel and any cloaked enemy ship is detected.

"HYP" Hyperjump, this will cause a ship that has a hyperjump drive to jump 350 light years and burn 50 KT of fuel. The waypoint of the jumping ship must be greater then 20 LY and the ship must have at least 50 KT of fuel. It is best to set the warp speed to 1 for the jump.

"mkt" Make torpedoes in space. Load your ship up with the items need to build torpedoes and your ship will construct them in space or over a planet. The items needed to build torps include one of each mineral type plus the megacredits required.

Alchemy ship codes:

"ald" Alchemy Duranium. This code will cause an alchemy ship to produce only Duranium.

"alt" Alchemy Tritanium. This code will cause an alchemy ship to produce only tritanium.

"alm" Alchemy Molybdenum. This code will cause an alchemy ship to produce only molybdenum.

Planetary friendly code:

"NUK" causes planet to attack all enemy ships in orbit. (note: some ships are immune to attack)

"ATT" causes planet to attack all enemy ships in orbit that have fuel. (note: some ships are immune to attack)

"bum" beam up megacredits to all ships in ships in orbit (including enemy ships). If more then one ship is in orbit then the megacredits will be split between all the ships.

"con" Configure Message. Have the host send a listing of the current
host configure settings next turn.

"dmp" Dump old parts. If there is a starbase in orbit around this planet then most the parts in the starbases storage bins will be converted back into minerals and dumped to the planets surface. Torpedoes will not be dumped.

Ship to enemy ship transfers:

"btt" Beam Transfer Torps. This code will transfer torpedoes of like type from the ship with this code to all enemy ships at the same point in space that have the same make of torp tube.

"btf" Beam Transfer Fighters. The code will transfer fighters from the ship with this code to all enemy ships at the same point in space that have fighter bays.

"btm" Beam Transfer Megacredits. This code will transfer megacredits from the ship with this code to all enemy ships at the same point in space.

"gsN" Give Ship. This code will give starship to N race, where N is the number/letter code of another race. When the starship has this code the race represented by N will take control of said starship on the next turn. A friendly code of gs1 would give your starship to the Feds on the next turn. The crew becomes crew members of the new controlling race. For this to work there must be an enemy ship belonging to race N with colonists at the same point in space as the ship with the "gsN" friendly. Only registered players can give ships away.

Ship to enemy planet transfers:

"bdm" Beam down Megacredits. This code will dump the megacredits from the ship to the planet that it is in orbit around, no matter who owns the planet.

Other codes:

"lfm" Load fighter minerals. This will load all the minerals and money onboard the ship to build as many fighters as possible and tells the ship to build fighters, regardless of the ships mission. This code will only work for the Robots, Rebels and Colonials.

"cln" Clone. A ship code. This tells the starbase that you own and are in orbit with to make an exact copy of the ship with this code. The starbases' tech levels must be equal to or greater then the ship being cloned. This will in most cases cancel out the normal starship building on the starbase any turn that there is a starship with this code in orbit. The cost of cloning a ship (megacredits) is 200% of the original cost of building the ship. The Privateers and Crystal People can not clone. You can not clone ships that your race can already build. Ships that are being cloned must stay at the starbase. A ship that is being cloned will have its warp speed set to zero.

The money and minerals are beamed directly from the planet to space. The parts stored on the starbase are not used by the cloning process.

"NAL" The alchemy function of a Merlin Class ship can be disabled with a friendly code of "NAL" ( No ALchemy )

"noc" Planet friendly code "noc" disables Config message listing being sent as a message.

"mfX" Universal minefield friendly code setting. A planet with a friendly code beginning with "mf" will cause ALL mine fields belonging to your race to have this code as the mine field friendly code. If you set more than one planet's friendly code first two letters to "mf" the highest ID planet will be used to set the mine field friendly code. The character following "mf" can be any letter or number. Example: If one of your planets friendly code is set to "mfK" then all your mine fields will have the friendly code of "mfK".

"ffX" Locking alliance codes. If a ship sets its friendly code to "ffX" where X is the race code ("123456789ab") that race becomes an ally race. Your mines will not effect them and your ships will not attack theirs. Your ships will never attack their planets. The alliance can be canceled with the ship code "eeX". Once a alliance is set it will stay set until it is canceled. You can see and sweep your friends mines. Web drain will not effect you. The switch ONLY takes place when a ships friendly code is changed. If all your ship friendly codes have been "ff1" for that last few turns and one ship changes its friendly code to "ee1" (Note: it is the only ship changing its code this turn) then race 1 will no longer be considered an ally.

The alliance information will show up in the Priority Build Points message. After the race name, if you see a "!" they have marked you as an ally, if you see a "+" you have marked them as an ally. I.E if you see: Lizards +! : they and you are both friends.

Your mines will not destroy ally mines

"PBx" Which ship is built by PBP's can be ordered by using planet friendly codes "PB1" "PB2" "PB3" "PB4" "PB5" "PB6" "PB7" "PB8" "PB9". A planet with the code "PB1" will build a PBP ship first. (PBP = Priority Build Points)

PBP ignores the normal ship build queue.
PBP does not effect the normal ship build queue.

"PBx" code does not work until there are more than 450 ship in the

(8) Minefield Friendly codes:


Any starship with that friendly code would be able to travel through the mine field and not activate any mines. If the planet's friendly code is changed the mine field's code will change to match it.

The minefield friend code takes effect as soon as the mines are laid and change anytime you change the friendly code of the planet controlling the mine field.

Web mines do not drain fuel from ships with matching friendly codes.

Rule 1:
Minefields have friendly codes. The minefield's friendly code will be the same code as the planet that is owned by the owner of the minefield that is nearest the mines center. So if you laid a minefield at Nixon and you own Nixon and Nixon's friendly code is "Q1m" the minefield would have a code of "Q1m". Any starship with that friendly code would be able to travel through the minefield and not activate any mines. If the planet's friendly code is changed the minefield's code will change to match it. The minefield friendly code takes effect as soon as the mines are dropped. Any ship in a web minefield that has a friendly code that matches the web minefield will not be drained by the web field. A ship will not minesweep a minefield with a matching friendly code and it will not show up on starmaps or in messages.

Rule 2:
A planet with a friendly code beginning with "mf" will cause ALL mine fields belonging to your race to have this code as the mine field universal friendly code. If you set more than one planet's friendly code first two letters to "mf" the highest ID planet will be used to set the mine field universal friendly code. The character following "mf" can be any letter or number. Example: If one of your planets friendly code is set to "mfK" then all your mine fields will have the universal friendly code of "mfK".

Rule 3:
If a Birdman ship sets the friendly code of any enemy planet using the super spy mission to a friendly code beginning with the letters "mf" and the planet has more than 30 defense outposts the planet will use an ion discharge overload to knock the ships out of cloak.

Rule 4:
A ship can use rule 1 or rule 2 to safely pass through a minefield. Both rules are in effect. The ship can use the "local" friendly code or the "universal" friendly code.


If a planet has a friendly code set to "dmp" or "bum" it can not unload cargo from ships belonging to other races using the starbase mission "unload ships".

A Bird Man ship will not try to change a planet's friendly code during a Super Spy mission if it uses a friendly code beginning with the letter "X", case does not matter.

The code "lfm" can be used over a planet that has you set as an ally.

(10) Missions:

Each ship can perform one of eight various missions that include Exploration, Lay Mines, Mine Sweep, Kill, Sensor Sweep, Colonize, Try to Tow and Try to Intercept. Some ships can Cloak.

The Exploration mission orders the ship to spy on planets to see if any enemy colonists are living there and if they have a starbase. All ships always will do this mission, in addition to any other mission they are currently doing.

The Lay Mines mission reprograms all the torpedoes onboard a starship to become deep space mines and lays them in a circle around your current position (if the Host has enabled the minefield option).

The Mine Sweep mission has the ship fire its beam weapons set on wide. The more beam weapons and the higher tech the weapons the greater the number of mines that can be destroyed per turn. The mine sweep mission will not destroy mines that belong to you or mines belonging to your allies, but it will give you the location and size of the nearest minefield that you and your allies own.

The Sensor Sweep mission scans planets within the sensor scan range for any readings that might suggest enemy activities. There must be at least 15 factories or 20 mines on the surface before the sensors can begin to detect the activity. The percentage odds that an enemy planet will show up on a scan are:

(100% - Defense Outposts * 6.66%)

This is done for every enemy planet within the sensor scan range.

Any planets with 15 or more defense outposts cannot be picked up on Sensor Sweeps.

The Kill mission orders the ship to attack all ships of any race other than your own that are located in the same position in space as your ship after movement. Matching friendly codes will override the Kill mission and primary enemy setting.

The Colonize mission orders the ship to disassemble the starship when it reaches a planet. The ship’s parts are used to make supplies for the colonists after unloading any colonists, cargo and fuel on the ship to the planet's surface. Most of the time it is best not to use the Colonize mission.It is usually better to beam the colonists down to an unowned planet using the ship <C>argo command. That way you can use the ship again.

The Try to Tow mission orders the ship to lock a tractor beam on a ship that is at the same position in space. The amount of fuel the towing ship will burn is proportional to the sum of the masses of both ships. If the ship that is the target of the tractor beam has a warp factor greater than the ship using the tractor beam the target ship will break free of the tractor beam if the waypoint setting of the ship trying to break free is set to a range that will take more than 1 month to travel to. If both ships are using tractor beams on each other, the ship with the higher warp factor will tow the ship with the lower warp factor.

The Try to Intercept mission orders the ship to intercept ships by ID number. You can use list and view commands to find the ID number of the ship you wish to intercept. Your ship will follow the intercept target ship until your ship runs out of fuel, the target ship disappears behind a planet, or cloaks. The intercept mission does not order the ship to attack the ship it is intercepting. It will attack the ship if the Primary Enemy is set to the race of the ship that it is intercepting. You may intercept your own ships, if you wish.

You must be within 200 ly of a ship to intercept it.

Intercepts Attack - Under HOST.EXE Version 3.20 (and better) ships with a cloaking device on an intercept mission will attack their intercept target ship first. The highest ID ships on an intercept mission attack before the lower ID ships on intercept missions. Any time a ship on an intercept mission goes into combat it loses its intercept lock. REMEMBER: You must set your primary enemy to the race of the ship you are intercepting if you wish to attack them.

Most races have an extra mission that is all their own. Ships must have fuel to do this extra mission.

No matter which mission a ship is on when it enters a battle, the ship will do its very best to win the fight. Mission in no way affects the way in which a ship will fight.

These are the ships that have cloaking devices.
Reptile Class Destroyer
Lizard Class Cruiser
Saurian Class Light Cruiser
White Falcon Class Cruiser
Swift Heart Class Scout
Fearless Wing Cruiser
Dark Wing Class Battleship
Resolute Class Battlecruiser
Bright Heart Class Destroyer
Deth Specula Class Frigate
BR4 Gun Boat
BR5 Kaye Class Torpedo Boat
Red Wind Class Carrier
Meteor Class Blockade Runner
D3 Thorn Class Destroyer
Dwarfstar Class Transport
D7 Coldpain Class Cruiser

Ships without fuel cannot cloak.



The experimental hyperspace device has been added to 3 ship classes:

Under HOST 3.20 If the player sets a waypoint using winplan to any point that is between 340LY and 360LY the ship will jump to this exact point in space. When a ship performs one of these exact jumps, gravity wells will not affect it.
(Note: PLANETS.EXE can not do exact jumps)

To use the hyperdrive set the ship's waypoint to a point farther then 20 light years and set the friendly code to "HYP". The ship will jump about 350 light-years and burn 50 units of fuel. The ship will come out of hyperspace at speed zero and with no waypoint set. Ships in hyperspace avoid all minefields. The hyperdrive can not be used to escape a tow. This will not work if the ship is on an intercept mission. Hyperjump ships can not tow another during a hyper jump.

The ship must have its speed set to warp 1 or faster for the jump to take place.


A switch in HCONFIG.EXE, The Engine Tech shield bonus. The power from higher tech engines increases the shield power of the ship.

How much? At 100%, a ship with transwarp engines fights like a ship that is 300 kt more massive. The cost of one engine is added to the combat mass of the to ship take in to account of the effect of the higher tech engines powering the shields.

This shield bonus is based on the tech of the engines and not the number of engines on the ship.

The engine tech to not effect the charge rate of the weapons. The tech of weapons does not effect the rate of weapon recharge.

The shield bonus does not apply to ships attacking planets.

Remember if you don't like this turn it off.


Status: ( >>>GREEN<<< and >>>RED<<< )

When host runs it now gives a "Data Status Message"

Green means the data from the player and in the host records are
100% normal.

Yellow status alerts are no longer given.

Red means there is some sort of problem. From one small error from an unknown origin to wholesale cheating. This means that minerals or money has showed up in a player's empire and the host can know where it came from. The host will take action to "correct" the problem during a red data status.


Running METEOR.EXE will cause a >>>RED<<< data status at random. There is nothing that can be done to prevent this. It is best not to run METEOR.EXE when using HOST 3.1x or HOST 3.2X, use the HCONFIG meteor settings instead.


All ships have an attack order. They will fight in an order that depends on the friendly code. The friendly code can give an attack value from 001 to 999. To use attack values your friendly code must have a numerical value. The attack values will NOT affect the way in which a ships fights, it only effects the battle order. Your enemy's attack values will NOT effect your battle order. A attack value of 1 is the lowest possible attack value.

Here are examples of attack values base on some friendly codes
where "x" is any non-number character.

Friendly code Attack values
xxx 1000
001 1
100 100
999 999
123 123

The ship with the lowest attack value will attack first. If two ships have the same attack value the ship with the lowest ID number will attack first.