FAQ - Open Play

1. What does "random seed" mean?
Quote from Gobi Bear (one of the developers) on the Sierra forums:

A "seed" is a set of data used to set the initial values used by a random number generator. In Open Play, you can type in anything you like as the "seed". The character string you typed is then treated as binary data and if, you change the string each time, each time you will get a different set of initial game data (i.e. the city map, other cities in the empire, commodities available will all be reset). If you keep the string (and all the other Open Play settings) the same, you will get the same initial setup.

However, the actual string of characters typed in is not associated with the actual results in game terms at all. So when you type "rice", that is just a series of numeric values used to set the random number generator ... it has nothing to do with that crop appearing in the game.

2. How can I win an Open Play mission?
As the name says, open play is, well, open: you don't have any goals to meet, so you can't "win" an open play mission: just build until you think your city is 'done'.