pan069 wrote on 2021-03-13, 08:52:
If I'm not mistaken, and remember correctly (sorry, it's been almost 30 years), but you can use TheDraw to draw those ANSI graphics and export them in various formats. One of them should be that can be used to "type"/output from/within DOS.
Yes, this is correct. This is how I did it too, except you need to load ANSI.SYS (or equivalent) as Azarien mentioned. TheDraw can load and save in various file formats, and lets you design coloured text without having to know the escape sequences. If you save in "Ansi" format as say MENU.ANS, then you can run this simple DOS command that pano69 mentioned to display that file with the colour, so long as ANSI.SYS is loaded:
I don't remember TheDraw all that well but I just had a play with it and forgot it even supported layers, it was certainly a lot easier than creating those ANSI sequences by hand.
Another alternative: there are also various utilities out there which are less flexible but simply let you do plain windows, e.g. Norton Utilities includes Batch Enhancer (BE.EXE) with a few relevant commands such as:
There are probably lots of shareware alternatives from the '90s out there too.
You can make things look a lot more fancy in TheDraw or by making raw ANSI sequences, e.g. you can make a gradient from the characters weedeewee posted, whereas BE will always draw fairly plain boxes, but something like BE can be useful if you want to be more interactive, e.g. move the cursor to a particular point and output some string from a variable in your batch file rather than always outputting the same text.