Command HQ
Rules of Play

Special Functions


Game Aids:


The following commands are all available to help you customize and speed up your game.  Due to the real-time nature of the war, these can be quite useful.

Screen Macros


By pressing Alt/Spacebar, or Click in Monitor 3), you can move quickly to crisis spots, but sometimes that is not enough.  Often, a war is broken up into distinct theaters, and you need to be able to scroll through them on a regular basis.  You can do this with programmable screen macros, which are a method of storing specific zoom locations in memory.


To define a macro, zoom to the area you wish to program.  Center the zoom box in an area you like, size it to your preference, and set up the background the way you wish (such as F4, or click on 'AIR' or F7, or click on 'OWN').  Then press Alt-1 through 9.

This information is saved throughout the game, and between games.  To return to that exact zoom location and window size, simply press the 1 through 9 key corresponding to the ID of the macro you defined.  For example, on IBM systems you would press the ALT key plus the number 1 through 9 to define the macro.  From then on, pressing that number alone would send you to the pre-set window location and size.

The first four macro IDs are already programmed into the game by default, but can be overwritten.   They zoom to Europe, the Middle East, Japan, and North America.


To return to the screen position you had before executing the macro, press 0 (the number, Zero).  To alter the zoom area of a macro, simply redefine it.


I/O Commands


These commands deal with the input devices supported by Command HQ.  They allow you further to fine-tune the play of the game, making it faster and more efficient.


If you use a joystick or mouse, having to let go and use the keyboard can sometimes be frustrating.   Therefore, as many commands as possible have been placed on the menu bar for easy access.  However, there may be a command you use particularly often to which you would like especially free access.  You can get this by programming Right Mouse Button, Joystick Button #2, or Delete.

To do this, press Alt and hold it down as you press Right Mouse Button, Joystick Button #2, or the Delete key.  Then press the key whose function you want Right Mouse Button, Joystick Button #2, or the Delete key Selector #2 to enact.  This "macro" will be saved from game to game and session to session.

By default, Right Mouse Button, Joystick Button #2, or the Delete key is programmed with the Spacebar function.  However, this feature has, caused some confusion.  Most players want Right Mouse Button, Joystick Button #2, or the Delete key to perform the Spacebar function, and they may get confused when suddenly it no longer will do so.  What happened was that they were accidentally holding down Alt when they pressed Right Mouse Button, Joystick Button #2, or the Delete key, and suddenly found that Right Mouse Button, Joystick Button #2, or the Delete key wasn't working as they expected anymore.  If this happens to you, and you want to restore the function of Right Mouse Button, Joystick Button #2, or the Delete key to its original state, press Alt and then Right Mouse Button, Joystick Button #2, or the Delete key at the same time, then press Spacebar.

Throughout this manual, when we reference Right Mouse Button, Joystick Button #2, or the Delete key, we assume it has its default Spacebar function.


These commands allow you to adjust the sensitivity and reactions of the keyboard, joystick, and mouse.

Keyboard: Press Alt-K to change the speed and sensitivity at which the Arrow Keys keys move the cursor.  High sensitivity moves the cursor fairly quickly, and adjusts its position one space for every tap of a Arrow keys key.   Low sensitivity moves the cursor very slowly, even when a Arrow Keys key is held down.

In addition, you can decide if you want the cursor to pop into the center of any windows you create by setting Scroll-Lock or Num-Lock on.  With Scroll-Lock or Num-Lock off, your cursor will not move to these windows upon opening.

To set the sensitivity bar or to toggle Scroll-Lock or Num-Lock using the Mouse, Joystick or Arrow keys, press Alt-K and place the Mouse, Joystick, or Arrow keys over the level of sensitivity you want, or in the "Move Cursor" box, and press Left Mouse Button, Joystick Button #1, or the Enter key.

Mouse: You can do the same thing with the mouse by pressing Alt-M.  Using the mouse selectors, choose your level of sensitivity and whether or not you want the cursor to pop automatically to the middle of any windows you open.

Joystick: The joystick moves at a constant speed; Alt-J should be pressed with the joystick centered.  This command only recalibrates the joystick.

Other Commands


Restart/Quit:   Press Alt-R, or click on 'RESTART' to return to the Main Options menu.  Press Alt-Q to exit Command HQ.

Pause: Press Alt-P, or click on 'PAUSE' or 'RESUME' to halt the game.  In a two-player game, only one player need press Alt-P, or click on 'PAUSE' or 'RESUME' to pause the game.  Both players must "unpause" in order for the game to begin again.  The message "Opponent Waiting" appears if your opponent has unpaused but you have not; "Waiting for Opponent" appears if you have unpaused but he has not.

Volume Control: Press Alt-V, or click on 'VOLUME' to toggle sound on or off.

Speed:  By pressing + (the Plus key) or - (the Minus key), you can alter the game from speed 8 down through speed 0.  Speed 8 moves extremely fast, probably too fast, and is best for watching films and speeding through periods of little activity (which are relatively rare).  Speed 1 moves extremely slowly, and is useful at the beginning of a large battle before all units have received orders.  In a normal two-player game, you and your opponent should agree beforehand as to what speed you wish to stay at.  High speeds put time pressure on you and your opponent, if you wish that to be a factor in the game.  Most competitive Command HQ play, such as in tournaments or ladders on the internet, is usually played at speed 5.

At speed 0, the game-time does not pass at all.  It is similar to a pause, but units can still be given orders, and air strikes can still be carried out.  In competitive Command HQ play, it is customary to reduce the speed to speed 0 before starting the game, so that both players can plan their strategy and place their initial forces on the board before the clock starts running.  When both players say they are ready (using F5), then the speed is cranked up to Speed 5 for the duration of the game.  Speed 0 is also useful if you want to try to play a two-player game at a single machine, but that loses much of the real-time flavor of the game.

Show Who


Command HQ is a game of hidden movement and surprise maneuvering; "can he see me?" is an important part of the strategy and tactics.


During a game, you see your own units, and any enemy units within scanning range.  By pressing = (the Equal sign), or click on 'SHOW = WHO', you can switch to "Show Common" mode, which displays only those units that are within scanning range of an enemy!  Using this, you can sometimes tell if one of your submarines has been spotted, or if your surprise attack is really a surprise.

During a film (replay), you can toggle between four different views: Show Red, Show Blue, Show Common, and Show Both.  Show Red and Show Blue show all the units of the selected side, and those units of the other side that are within scanning range.  Show Common is the same as in the game.  Show Both shows all units of both sides.


In addition to changing who is seen, you can actually switch sides during a game.  To do this, press Ctrl-Alt-W.  Although it is possible to press this key combination to flip sides during a 2-player game, it should be considered an instantaneous resignation by the player who pushed it.  (Claiming it was an accident won't work!)  However, it can be an interesting way to extend a game that has become very lopsided.  Send a message over the chat first.  Something like - "If you're so good, try to win from my side!" before you press the keys.

At One


Switching sides can be especially useful when playing a game with two players at one computer, although that is really not highly recommended.  To do this:

1) Select "Sgt. Stan Still" in the Opponent Options screen.

2) When the game begins, set the speed to 0 before unpausing.

3) The player whose side is showing gives orders to any or all of his units.   Since air strikes are actually resolved at Speed 0, you may wish to limit the number of air strikes (but not air transports) a player is allowed to perform in each "turn" at the computer - a limit of two is fair.

4) Push = (the Equal sign), or click on 'SHOW = WHO' until "Show Common" appears, and press Ctrl-Alt-W.

5) That player leaves the machine, and the other player sits down, agrees to switch sides, and toggles = (the Equal sign), or click on 'SHOW = WHO' to show his side.  Then he gives his orders.

After giving orders, he can toggle back to "Show Common" and speed up the game for an agreed-upon number of rounds (four rounds is fair) so both sides can watch, or he can stay with his own view and speed up for an agreed-upon number of rounds.  At the end of those rounds, repeat steps 2-5.

While this procedure works, it does lose the 'real-time' nature of the game, and is rather cumbersome.  The best way to play a two-player game is with two connected computers.

Kill My

If you want to kill off one of your units, you can do so by selecting the unit and typing Ctrl-Alt-K.

Normally, you would probably never want to do this.  However, if you start getting the "No More Units" error (see Game Limits), you may wish to kill off some of your units in order to make room in the game for you to be able to buy new units.

Give Me

In solo games, you can 'cheat' by asking for more money.  By typing Ctrl-Alt-M, you can add 10 billion to your bank account, up to a maximum of 150 billion.  If you ask for more than 150 billion, then your bank account will go back to 0.

This command will only work when playing against the computer opponent.  It will not work when playing a two-player game.


When a game is over, either because one side resigned, one player captured all of the opponent's capitols, or through the onset of Nuclear Winter, you'll see a short animation declaring the winner and all of the land on the map will flash to the victor's color.  (In the case of Nuclear Winter, there is no victor, and the world flashes white.)  After you press a key, the endgame statistics will be displayed.  This includes the player's names, a declaration of the victor, and all of the units of each type bought and lost during the war by each side, along with the survival ratio.  Press any key to return to the map, showing the positions of all units at the end of the game.

If you resume a saved war, these stats will only include the units bought and lost since the game was resumed.  It also does not include any units on the map at the initial setup, in the 1918, 1942, and 1986 scenarios.

To look at the statistics again after the game, or at anytime during the viewing of a film, press F2, or click on 'WAR'.


Anytime the game statistics screen is displayed, that same information is also stored in the file CHQSTATS.TXT.  That file is deleted when the war or replay begins, and appended to each time the statistics screen is displayed.  Therefore, it will contain the statistics of the last game played or replay viewed.

This feature was provided because during tournaments, some players wanted to be able to quickly cut-and-paste the game statistics into an E-Mail that they could use to demonstrate their victory.  If you play a tournament or ladder game, you may be requested to provide a copy of the statistics.  To do that, open this file using any text editor (such as the 'edit' program in DOS,  the windows notepad, or the 'e' editor under OS/2).  Using one of these programs (among others) you can view the file and 'mark' the text, and 'copy' it to the clipboard.  Then, when you compose your E-Mail announcing victory, you can 'paste' the text into your message.


Saving Games


During the course of a game, you may want to stop and save the game to play at a future time, or you may want to have a record of the game before you continue to play.

To save a game, press Alt-S.  A menu appears for both players, listing the current saved games.  Select the title you wish to overwrite ("Untitled" is a new space for saved games) and use the backspace and letter keys to type a name for your saved game.  Up to 100 games can be saved in a single subdirectory.  When saving a two-player game, both players must save the game, but they don't have to save the game under the same name.

Once saved, to resume the game then or at any other time, select "Resume Saved War" from the Main Options menu, and select the game you wish to resume.  If both players have selected the same game, it restarts at the moment it was saved.

If the communication connection is lost during the middle of gameplay (phone line got disconnected, perhaps), the Save Game Menu will appear automatically after a minute or so.

A Two-
from One

If only one player saves his game (the other player's power suddenly went out, perhaps), it is still possible to resume the game, if you follow the following steps:

1) First find the saved game file.  Normally, it would be in the \HQ\SAVE directory, and it has the name CHQ-nn.SG, where "nn" usually corresponds with the order in which games are listed in the save/resume game directory.  Use this number or the date and time to pick which file seems to be the right one.  For final confirmation, load the file into a text editor and amidst all of the weird characters, the name of the saved game should show up (actually, the name begins at the 6th byte and ends at the 25th).

2) Now transfer the file to the player that lost or didn't save his copy.

3) The receiving player should rename the file to a name that is not the same as any other file in your \HQ\SAVE subdirectory (CHQ-99.SG would probably work).  Copy that renamed file to your \HQ\SAVE subdirectory.

4) Start Command HQ and select RESUME SAVED GAME.  Pick the file received from the opponent.  It will be the "wrong" side, but when the 'Connect Options' are offered, press Ctrl-Alt-W to flip sides, and then resume with the connection normally.



In the 1986 scenarios only, you can create a "custom layout" to pit against the computer opponent, or your friends' custom layouts.  To create a custom layout, select "Lay Out Armies" from the Main Options menu.  This puts you in a special version of the pre-game setup, in which you can move your units freely within friendly territory, give units destinations, and buy new units with your starting funds - but you cannot use intel scans or foreign aid, and you do not accrue money.

Once you have set up your units in a configuration you like, press F2, or Click on 'WAR' and give your setup a name as in "Saved Games" above.  (If you abort the save by pressing Escape, then use Right Mouse Button, Joystick Button #2, or Spacebar to clear the screen.)

To select this setup, play the 1986 scenario.  The game will ask you if you want to use the standard setup, or one of your own.  Choose the second option to access the Saved Layout Menu and select the one you want.  The game will open with your units in your preset configuration.


Game Films

After each game, a special replay (called a "film") is available for viewing.  To see a replay of your game, to to the Main Options menu and select "Watch a Film".   You'll see the previous war replayed.  While watching, you can zoom and get other information, but you cannot "play" the film (but see Films to Games, below).   Studying war films from prior games (especially games you lost) is an excellent way to learn some of the more intricate strategies behind Command HQ play.

Saving a Film: If you like a particular war enough to keep a permanent record of it, go to the Main Options menu and select "Save a Film", then give this film a name as in Saving Games and Layouts, above.  Remember that you can store up to 100 films in a single directory.  If you will be saving more films than that, you should place them in separate directories, perhaps grouped by opponent.  The default directory is the 'SAVE' subdirectory, which can be found in the directory where you installed the game.

Load a Film:  To view one of your saved films, select "Load a Film" from the Main Options menu, and select the film you wish to see.  This film will be loaded into memory.  Then select "Watch a Film" to see the replay.

Films to

During a film, you can bring the computer opponent in at any time and turn the film into a solo game by pressing Ctrl-Alt-G.  This begins the game with the setup currently available for the film.  You'll play the side that was currently being played at that machine. This can be a good way to see where you went wrong.  During a solo game, pressing Ctrl-Alt-G will increase the skill level of the computer opponent.  If the opponent is already Mars, God of War, the opponent will become Sgt. Stan Still.

You can turn this solo game into a two-player game by pressing Ctrl-Alt-H.  You'll have to transfer a saved version of this file to your opponent in order to start the two-player game (although, if your opponent has a saved game of the same era that is longer than yours, he can start that and the synchronization process will default to your game).


Next Chapter: Advice and Hints