Colossus - Options on client side (MasterBoard window)
This document is a start to describe the meaning/purpose of the
different available options on client side, i.e. what you (every
individual player/client) can select/modify from the Menu bar in the
"MasterBoard" window during the game, and which are more like
activities, as in "do THIS now".
For the various settings which are more like "Preferences", as
in "I like this and that to be displayed like THIS", see the
Preferences Window Settings page.
For the game-global option that can only be set during game setup
see the Get Players startup dialog page.
The menubar provides the following menus:
The different menus are described in detail in the sections below.
These are the usual options you would expect from most applications:
Save game and Save game as will save the current state
of the game to a xml file in a subdirectory "saves" in "the colossus
directory"; this colossus directory is generally speaking, a directory
called ".colossus" in your "home directory". Whatever this home
directory is, depends on your operating system. For Unix and Linux
users this should be clear; under Windows XP this is something
like "C:\Documents and Settings\<your login name>"; other
versions of Microsoft Windows use different directories...
- New game
- Load game
- Save game
- Save game as
Colossus tells you the directory it considers to be your home directory under
Help - About (it shows it in the line
Save game will automatically generate some numeric, for human
not meaningful filename (same as the Autosave option in Settings in
Get Players startup dialog);
with Save game as you are prompted
with a file selection box to provide a name for the file (with XML
Games saved this way can be loaded later using the Load game
menu option or with the Load game button in the Player
Selection menu (on game start).
NOTE: Right now loading games that were saved
during the middle of a phase (in particular when a battle is ongoing),
might cause trouble or not work at all. Thus you should try
to save always at the beginning of a user's turn or at least at the
beginning of a phase.
NOTE: Once you select New Game and click "Yes" in the
following confirmation dialog, your currently running game is
aborted. I.e. even if you then in the upcoming player selection dialog
click "Quit": this does not bring you back to the game (even though it
is still visible in the background!!) - rather it will terminate the
whole Java application. This might be changed in (far ;-) future to
allow a "Cancel" to return back to the ongoing game.
Loading a game that involves network (=remote) players is possible,
but one has to do it "exactly the right way" - see the FAQ in
Networked Colossus (at the bottom of page).
This menu provides some actions affecting your current game phase:
Which of those are at a certain moment available and what they do might
depend on the situation, in which current game phase you are (Split,
Move, Resolve Engagements, Muster Recruits).
This means also, when it is currently not your turn, this menu is
During the muster phase of the individual players, small chits will
appear on the different legions stacks (on top of the legion marker),
indicating which creature that legion did recruit recently. They will
automatically cleared up in the moment when your own mustering phase
starts. Before that, they are all there and might hinder your sight -
for example, you don't see the number indicating the height of your
own or the other player's legions; sometimes this information would be
useful to see when deciding about whether to split. With this menu
item (or just pressing "C") you can make the recruit chits disappear
at nearly any time you want.
There is no way to call them back (right now).
NOTE: above it says "at nearly any time" - because, if you
press "C" while a "do you want to concede?"-dialog is open, this "C"
would be taken as answer to the dialog. There's room for improvement
This will undo the last action you did (split, recruit, or moving a
This undoes all of the done actions of this phase, i.e. it resets you
to the beginning of this phase. There is no way to go back to previous
This will end the current phase, and being done with the "Muster
Recruits" phase will end your turn; thus the next player can start his
This allows to take a Mulligan, i.e. re-rolling the movement
dice. This is only available during the movement phase, and according
to normal Titan rules only once and only in first turn.
(In the Player Selection during the Game startup, the tab
Options, exists an option Unlimited Mulligans - with
this selected the Take Mulligan action will be allowed during
any turn, as many times as one wants. Good for practicing purposes :)
Will remove you cleanly from the game.
As said, the Phase menu is disabled when it's not your turn. Arguably
the Withdraw from Game might be useful to be available at any
time, but current implementation does not allow it... one would need
to check first if withdrawing at whatever other point might cause
problems in the client/server synchronization (to the other, remaining
clients); as long as this is not checked it stays as it is. If you
just close your window in a very unlucky moment the game *might* hang
for the remaining players :-(
There are two types/groups of settings here. The first group are all
some additional, smaller ("satellite") windows, showing certain types
of information. Changing the checkboxes make those windows be displayed or
hidden; closing the window with the small cross in right corner will
unmark the checkbox in the menu as well.
The last two, View Full Recruit Tree and View Web Client, are (technically speaking)
not checkbox items, but "actions" and can be activated also
by just pressing a key ("F" for "Full Recruit Tree"
and "W" for "Web Client).
Additionally in this menu are (only sometimes available)
"Choose Screen For Info Windows", and as last item the
"Preferences..." which brings up the Preferences Window.
Show or hide the Caretaker's stacks - how many of each creature are available, dead, in use, etc.
Show or hide the game status window. This displays how many legions,
free markers, points, etc. every player has.
This game status window
also displays also the current game turn number, and, often
overlooked, in a battle you can see here also the current battle
round and phase!
As name says: the results from every engagement. Which legions did
fight, their contents, who won, how (fled, conceded, battle), how many
points earned. There are prev and next buttons to look through all of them.
There is some special magic builtin to this window - if you press
"Hide" it will disappear and reappear once the next battle finished
you are involved in. (I think this was meant to be like that, so that
it jumps to the "latest" entry in that window only if you are
involved, and does NOT automatically go to the next one e.g. if the
AI's make quickly several battles. That this has also the effect of
only reappearing in some situations ... well. Someone should take a
look at it...)
Note that this window only shows the legions as they "were at
engagement start" and the final state of the winner (just the
surviving creatures). I.e. you can't see here what was killed,
summoned, or acquired. Information in that form (what was added or
removed) can be seen from Event Viewer.
A small satellite window always displaying content based on the
current mouse position. Mostly the content of legions, or on empty
land it shows the recruiting tree of that land.
You can always look at your own legions. Whether or what you are
entitled to see of other player's legions content depends on the
Viewable legion content in Get Players selection dialog.
Event Viewer shows all (most of) the events that reveal some
information or are otherwise interesting or relevant. Mostly this is
needed to follow information which was revealed by recruiting (what
was mustered and and which creatures were "revealed" to proof one is
eligible to do so), teleport, summon, acquire or what survived a
Also things like splitting, taking a mulligan, movement roll are shown
there eventhough one would not classify them as "reveal"ing anything.
A great place to follow what's going on in the game, especially with
many AI players. This Event Viewer is in particularly needed if you
play with "Own legions only" for the setting
Behavior of the Event Viewer (how long back events can be shown)
depends on the setting
Events expire after
before game start in the Get Players selection dialog.
A text log window showing lot of details what's going on in the
game. Most of it not relevant for actual playing, but for trouble
shooting. The unfortunate situation is, that text is only added there
when log window is open. Thus if a problem occurs and you display this
window afterwards there is nothing shown. Room for improvement here...
Show a window with all recruit trees (what can be mustered where).
Here the remaining two:
This option is only available if you use a dual screen setup, i.e. two
displays connected to your computer. [is that correct??]
Then you can use this setting to choose a different screen for the satellite
This brings up the "Preferences" window.
Tells some basic information about your running Colossus application.
This shows the same Variant Readme file that is also displayed in
the Variant Readme pane during the Get Players startup selection.
- Colossus build: The build version/date of the used jar files. Important information in bug reports.
- user.home: Which directory Colossus considers to be your
home directory. Under that directory will be (created if necessary) a
directory ".colossus". In this .colossus directory the saved user
settings (as "Colossus-<playername>.cfg") and the server
settings (global, i.e. server side game options, which are selected in
the Get Players startup dialog, as "Colossus-server.cfg" - of course
only if you run the server); saved games are stored in a subdirectory
"saves" under this .colossus directory.
- java.version: Which java version you are using to run this
game. This also is a very important information when making bug
This Readme describes the variant you are currently playing; like, in
which aspects it differs from the "Default" variant ( = standard Titan
as the original Avalon Hill game); often, it lists up information
like when/how angels (or other summonables in some variants) can be
acquired, and which creatures can be recruited where in an easier to
read form than clicking the recruit trees of the individual lands; often
some credits, who invented that variant, and so on.
The purpose of this is to provide help/documentation for various aspects
of Colossus: the server side options (Get Players dialog),
the client side options (in MasterBoard menu) and Preferences settings
(own window, displayable with Window-menu => Preferences..."),
and some features of the Battle Map Window (what the various elements
of the displayed map mean).
Right now this "Documentation" dialog simply displays in a text area
links (URLs) to the
relevant web pages on the Colossus home page. This might or should
eventually be developed further to become a proper help page browsing
Created July 2007, reflecting the state of Colossus at this time
(directly after rearrangement of the MasterBoard menus).
Last updated thursday, August 27, 2009 by Clemens Katzer