It's still unclear what will happen. If a TacOps5 gets released it is also a possibility that it will have multiple elevations (instead of 2). A TacOps 5 would not have an autonomous AI like CMx1 has, what would be added is the capability that the user (or rather, the scenario designer) can add plans to a scenario. Right now those plans are in the C code.
He has stated on the mailing list that he has purchased development tools to aid in work on TacOps5. As Gary said, the weather is warming and MajorH is mostly retired so he is enjoying life. The possibility remains open.
That said. Hopefully he gets a burst of creative energy and gets some work cranked out. We could do a rain dance to drive the Major indoors this summer but that would likely drive in varmints too and be counterproductive to dedicated code work
I have not idea what the Major's plans are for TacOps. But if there is only going to one last edition of TacOps (TacOps 5), then it would be cool if this last version included a unit editor. That would go a long way toward giving the game additional life and give players who own previous version a solid reason to purchase TacOps 5. Of course, a real scenario editor that included the ability to script the AI would be a must.
Perhaps there will be many more versions of TacOps in the future. But if there is to be just one more, I hope it is "TacOps Ultimate" or something like that.
I haven't seen the Major being open to that idea, unfortunately. XML file formats with their integration of external validation tools and parsers for your application's use would make user-edited data files much safer than anything that came before. But I don't think it's gonna happen.