2. I'm not sure how you would do it either. This will probably get easier once more bugs are fixed but at this rate it could be awhile. I guess the "smart" choice the users would be to play with the last "official" release, but at this point in the fixes that would mean playing with an inferior patch.
It's worse than that: If everybody who is playing a PBEM game were all running 1.01, nobody would exist who could test the beta versions.
Marshall, to solve this, we need the ability to load a second copy of the game. But, there are a couple of potential problems with this:
First, it can't violate the license agreement to do so.
Second, there has to be discreet locations on the disk AND in the registry, such that one copy won't interfere with the other (if installed on one system). If located on two systems, beta testers would have to be made "official", so they can have two copies on two systems. Yes, I know that the copy protection against that is weak, but it doesn't matter: I don't want to be illegal or unethical.
Third (and related to #2), if one had two copies, one could much more easily cheat (by simply loading the save files on two computers -- you take it from there). So, the user's serial number AND instance would have to be loaded into saved game files and battle files. Alternately, a second (beta?) serial number should be used.
At LAST! The greatest campaign board game of all time is finally available for the PC. Can my old heart stand the strain?