Soundblaster compatibility (or the lack of it) was a problem for Tornado right from its release. Some versions would not work with any soundblaster card, but version 1.0c seemed to fix most problems except for SoundBlaster 16 owners: Firing the cannon could lock your computer when selecting SoundBlaster as the sound device. The only option for SB16 users was to switch to the somewhat less dramatic Adlib sounds. This problem was so bad that some subsequent releases of Tornado had their entire Soundblaster support disabled for good internally. Even if you select the SoundBlaster option, the program will automatically choose the Adlib driver.
For those SB16 owners who still have Soundblaster support in their copy of Tornado and experience the cannon-lockup-problem, I wrote a little patch that seems to fix the lock-up problem on most systems.
Tools, Add-Ons and Patches
TMF 1.06(map printing/snow/night vision)
Tornado Map Fax Machine (TMF)
This allows you to print captured screens of the Tornado Mission Planner (without having to leave Tornado) on most HP laser/inkjet and EPSON or NEC 24 needle printers (and compatible printers) as gray-scale maps (much like a fax, hence the name of the tool). These hardcopies can be used as maps for the planned missions. This will give you better orientation during the flight, and you can use a series of maps to document and analyse the progress of your campaign. Printed maps are especially helpful when you have to attack (say) an NBC factory with LGBs but you forgot which of the factory buildings is the NBC factory. It's also very useful if you have to divert from your pre-planned route and you need to find a safe way home thru the enemy air defences (e.g. when short on fuel or after aborting a mission because of system damage).
Another add-on that comes with TMF is an optional simulation of night vision goggles (NVGs), helmet mounted devices that enhance the ambient light at night. You can switch them off and on during flight.
Included in the TMF package is an unofficial patch of Tornado that will optionally give the impression of a winter landscape in the European warzones, that is the ground and buildings appear to be covered by snow and (optionally) some aircraft are painted in winter camo.
Version 1.07 fixes a bug that was introduced in 1.06 an prevented NVG s to work in the Desert Storm scenario
Soundblaster Cannon patch
Many users of Tornado versions 1.0c - 1.0e have reported problems when using a Soundblaster SB 16 sound card. Frequently, the computer locks up after firing the cannon. The only known cure so known until now was to switch to the ADLIB driver on the PREFERENCES Screen, but this resulted in slightly less realistic sounds. This is a beta test patch to correct the problem. It should work with the following versions of Tornado:
Generic Tornado Patcher (tpatcher.zip)
You'll also have to download this Generic Tornado Patcher to use the cannon patch.
Action 16 Edition SoundBlaster patch
The Action 16 edition (mainly sold in Europe) of Tornado is a budget version that has the Desert Storm extension on it (version 1.0e) and comes on a CD-ROM, either in a box or in a jewel case with an online Adobe PDF manual.
A similar edition was published as a cover-CD-ROM on the German language magazine "Bestseller Games Collection" (issue 12).
The problem with these versions is that Soundblaster sound effects were disabled in these editions with the exception of the Quickstart option where you still can hear digitized sound effects. I've written a patch that will allow you to hear Soundblaster effects in all parts of the simulation. Note that this patch will probably not work with the American Trimark edition that also had it's SB effects disabled.
The Logbook Editor: TLE
The Tornado Logbook Editor (TLE) is a tiny program to edit almost all aspects of the Tornado pilot logbooks. Yes, you can actually promote your pilot!
A Safer Keyboard Layout: TKM
Tornado Keyboard Mapper is a little memory resident program that will change the keyboard layout of Tornado. I wrote it after I had (for the third time) ejected by accident from my Tornado (I wanted to press CTRL-R to switch off the radar, but actually hit CTRL-E: eject).
Soundblaster Autodetect patch
When Tornado was released, a 486-DX-33 was quite a fast machine. Like many other games, Tornado has problems on some fast machines, especially with the routines for Sound Blaster autodetection (the program (at least version 1.0c upwards) ignores the value of the BLASTER environment variable and tries to find out the correct values for IRQ and port address by "experimentation", it always uses DMA channel 1, by the way, and the only IRQ values supported by Tornado are 2,3,5 and 7. If your soundcard is set to use a different IRQ, it won't work with Tornado 1.0c - 1.0e).
On fast machines, this autodetection mechanism sometimes fails. After you select "TAKE OFF" in the Mission Planner, the cockpit fails to show up and you are thrown back into the mission planner with a warning like "soundcard not present".
In this case, the patch T_SBDT.ZIP might be helpful.
The Review feature of Tornado contains a library of nice pictures of the different types of aircraft and other vehicles modelled in the simulation. Those pictures are stored in a file format that seems to be used only by DI. The program ShowPT2 will convert these pictures to the BMP Bitmap format, so you can use those pictures for private purposes like MS Windows wallpaper (and only for private use because those pictures are (c) by DI !!). This version features optional correction of the aspect ratio and clipping of black borders around some pictures.
TCSC (For Windows 3.1/Windows 98)
Tornado Command and Staff College (TCSC) is a tutorial for Tornado Command Campaign gameplay, discussing how to survive and win a virtual campaign in Tornado both from the tactical pilot and the strategic commander perspective. It was written by Eric Joiner, Basil Copeland and Heinz-Bernd Eggenstein (that's me).
Unlike many other strategy guides and FAQ lists, TCSC is not a mere ASCII file, it was written in Windows 3.1 helpfile format, so it has hypertext links, 256-color graphics and even (optionally) some sound bites.
Discussing TCSC is beyond the scope and capacity of this website. To learn all about TCSC (and much more), go to one of the hottest flight sim related sites on the WWW: the TCSC homepage.
TCSC is shareware (US$ 10). In return for the 10 bucks, you'll also get a password which can be used to decrypt additional goodies: several hot Tornado add-on programs.
Tornado Spouse Reminder Tool (TSRT)
Has this ever happened to you?
You fly a really exciting Tornado mission, evading lots of SAMs and bombing the hell out of those orange enemies.
Suddenly, a complete stranger enters the cockpit, and wants to talk to you about some irrelevant things like your children, mortgages, plans for spending weekends together etc. After some time, you realize this person is not really a complete stranger, she looks familiar ... she's your wife! How embarrassing! During all those hours in the cockpit, you forgot what she looks like!
Now, with this incredible new tool, the result of months of scientific work by our team of experts, this can no longer happen to you:
We are proud to introduce the Tornado Spouse Reminder Tool (TSRT). This program allows you to stick a photo of your spouse to Tornado's front cockpit dashboard!
Tornado Ordinance Management
Tornado by DI is supposed to simulate a limited supply of ordnance from which you have to take configure your Tornados. However, this feature does not work correctly, making it impossible to run out of ordnance in even the most costly and long campaign.
But there's nothing that can keep us Tornadoholics from simulating a limited supply of weaponry independently. This can be tedious if you do it all by pencil and paper, e.g. counting all the different bombs and missiles loaded to the up to 8 Tornados in a mission can be a pain.
To assist in this task, I wrote a program ORDNANCE.EXE and a simple Excel 3.0 spreadsheet ORDNANCE.XLS that will help you automate this process a bit. (There's also an identical spreadsheet file ORDNANCE.wk1 in Lotus-1-2-3 file format)
TCSC add-on (registered users only) Desert Storm: Gulf '96 add-on campaign
This is an encrypted file. Unless you are a registered TCSC user and have the registration password, don't download it.
Gulf '96 is an add-on campaign and bug-fix package for the "Operation Desert Storm" part of Tornado (versions 1.0d and 1.0e only). It adds a campaign that is much harder than the original ODS campaign and fixes some bugs in ODS as well. This zip file also includes the TORNADO ODS Enhancement Patch.
Time Compression TSR program
This handy tool allows you to speed up the actual gameplay by N times, thereby allow you to fast-forward past the "boring" parts of the mission, and to quickly go to crucial points of the mission. TTC is a simple TSR that allows time compression during Tornado missions. Time compression makes events happen faster, and is normally used to quickly skip "less interesting" parts of a mission. In Tornado, the outcome of a mission might not always be successful. The mission must be aborted and repeated unless you want your favorite "pilot" to be
forever KIA. If nothing else is changed a repeated mission will closely resemble the original. Often this implies a lot of waiting (in real-time) while the auto-pilot goes from turn-point to turn-point. YOU know that until way-point so-and-so is reached nothing interesting will happen. And you will go and make a cup of cofee. But after several retries you sort of get fed up with making cofee, and you don't really have anything else (short-term) to do. It gets a bit boring (and time-consuming) to wait for the action (sorry DI). TTC will reduce the waiting time by a factor 2-8.
This is an add-on initial campaign situation for the European Warzone no. 2. It's meant to be much harder to win than the other campaigns that come with DI's Tornado, as you start with a disadvantage and because the enemy is less ambitious.
This unofficial patch fixes a slight bug in the way Tornado calculates allied and enemy morale during campaigns.
Terrain Following Realism Patch
This unofficial patch allows you to fly in TF mode at 100ft AGL (real MRCA Tornados can do that)! While this will help you evade missiles and enemy radar, it also has a downside to fly that low: power lines! So be careful.
Default Speed Patch
Another unofficial patch, this one allows you to set the default mission planner waypoint speed to values higher than 420 kts. Usually, you'd like the IDS Tornados to cruise at 500+ kts, which is more fuel efficient than the usual 420 kts for navigation waypoints, as the latter means you have to accelerate fast to get to 500+ kts for the target waypoints.
This tool generates ASCII reports of the debriefing texts after a mission, this is especially useful when doing e-mail campaigns with others
Tornado Mission Exchange Tool
TMX (for short) allows you to refly missions or exchange missions with others (similar to Red Flag missions in Falcon 3.0). It comes with several example missions.
Tornado Joystick Doctor
This unofficial patch can significantly improve the joystick routines in Tornado on most machines, especially fast machines (fast by the standards of Tornado's release time: anything faster than a 486-DX-33 !).
Mission Summary Text Extractor
This is the first revision of a program to extract a mission summary from Tornado's .mis and .dta files, listing mission objectives and waypoints. Copy it to a directory in your path and e.g. tdomiss miss1 >miss1.txt -or- tdomiss \games\tornado\amp\map5\miss1 will extract the info for mission 1, to the screen or to disk as required. Any comments and suggestions gratefully received, particularly any info on the contents of .dta and .mis files so I can improve the output. tdomiss has been tested on the missions supplied with 1.0e Europe. firstname.lastname@example.org
(TCSC Associates) and Kenneth Larsen for the Time Compression utility!
Soundblaster compatibility (or the lack of it) was a problem for Tornado right from its release. Some versions would not work with any soundblaster card, but version 1.0c seemed to fix most problems except for SoundBlaster 16 owners: Firing the cannon could lock your computer when selecting SoundBlaster as the sound device. The only option for SB16 users was to switch to the somewhat less dramatic Adlib sounds. This problem was so bad that some subsequent releases of Tornado had their entire Soundblaster support disabled for good internally. Even if you select the SoundBlaster option, the program will automatically choose the Adlib driver. For those SB16 owners who still have Soundblaster support in their copy of Tornado and experience the cannon-lockup-problem, I wrote a little patch that seems to fix the lock-up problem on most systems.