Good news for Comanche Gold fans who care: We should hopefully soon have full -- or near-full -- support over triggers!
For those who are wondering what this means, custom maps have just had a new door opened to them. We can make custom missions that have multiple ways to win or lose, depending on what conditions are fulfilled. For example, we can make a mission in which you win either by protecting a friendly unit from attack, or, if you fail to save him, by racing over to the enemy's heavily guarded HQ and bombing it to pieces in revenge. We might be able make missions with a time limit, so you only have to hold out from a major attack for so long before you win, pretending for a moment that the enemy is low on fuel and only has a brief moment to overrun your base. We can also change AI groupings to patrol different areas if enemy radar stations are destroyed or not, or even if you're spotted by certain units, making penetration easier or more difficult, depending on the circumstances.
This isn't even counting some of the other things we can do like adding our own sounds, music, and text instructions to our missions.
Now triggers have always apparently been able to be added manually, but the issue with which I've been fighting currently is how to group objects. This is what you'd need in order to distinguish, for example, your teammate from an enemy hokum in a particular trigger. I've finally discovered how to do this, but it's a laborious, long, manual, and ugly process. I've had to write a rather crude tool to speed up the process, and this appears
to be working for me (although I'm not sure it's bug free). It's not certain that everything will work, but tests have been very promising.
If people are interested in this, let me know, and I'll continue posting more information on this. Be forewarned -- it's not all that easy to get into right away. It requires you to do some extra work to get right, but it should be easier once you get used to it. For example, the first thing to know is that you'll have to learn how to pack and unpack .MRF files. Sounds difficult perhaps, until you realize that if you've unpacked a .PFF file, it's the same thing.
I can write tutorials or some other form of assistance in creating maps to work with triggers. I at least want to create a demo map and release that as an example. I think a number of us should consider making some actual campaigns. If all goes well, I'll be trying to release my own campaign(s) in the near future -- maybe even playable in multiplayer.