Abandonware DOS title

Conan: the Cimmerian manual

                         CONAN THE CIMMERIAN

                  TABLE OF CONTENTS               PAGE

                  I. CREDITS                         1
                  II. INTRODUCTION                   2
                  III. GETTING STARTED               4
                  IV. THE CONTROL SYSTEM             4
                  V. GENERAL INSTRUCTIONS            6
                  VI. GAME LEVELS                   11
                  VII. INTERACTION                  12
                  VIII. SCREEN ICONS                14
                  IX. STATUS SCREEN                 15
                  X. THE WORLD OF HYBOREA           16
                  XI. HINTS FOR HYBOREANS           18
                  XII. THE WORLD OF ROBERT E.HOWARD 21


As our adventure begins, Akado the Wizard is seated by a campfire, relating
the story of Conan the Barbarian.  Bear in mind that the Wizard is very old
and  he  may  occasionally  gets  events  confused.  But don't worry, he'll
eventually back up and retell any part of the story he gets wrong.

Go,  then,  and  take  Conan  on his quest for vengeance.  A bit of advice:
talk  to  anyone you can in Shadizar!  You can never tell who might aid you
in  your  quest.   The  fortune  tellers  and  wise  sages  of the city are
particularly helpful in their words of advice.

III.  Getting Started: Insert disk 1 into drive 0

IV. The Control System

Once you have loaded the game, three options will be offered:

NEW GAME Allows players to begin a new adventure

RESTORE GAME Allows players to reload a previously saved game

QUIT Ends game and returns user to DOS

Once a new game has been selected or a previous scenario restored, a series
of  introductory  text  windows  will  establish  the  game's storyline and
characters.   To  read the entire introduction, continue to select the MORE
command.   To end the introduction, select the CONTINUE command.  Next, use
the  ACTION  icon  (the  clenched  first) to give Conan a movement command.
After  clicking  on  the  ACTION  icon, click on the city of Shadizar (just
south of Conan's current position) and Conan will travel to that city.

CONAN  THE  CIMMERIAN  begins in the streets of Shadizar.  The game has two
visual perspectives:

TOPDOWN  When outside a building or structure, Conan is seen from an angled
topdown perspective.

SIDE  VIEW  When inside a building or engaged in combat, Conan is seen from
side perspective.  (see "Game Levels")


At  any  time  during  the game, the player can access the Control Panel by
moving  the  cursor to either the Blue jewel at the top to the screen or by
pressing  the  F1  key.   Invoking the Control Panel presents the following

NEW GAME - Allows the player to begin a new adventure

RESTORE GAME - Allows player to reload a previously-saved adventure.

SAVE  GAME - Conan uses an auto-save feature that allows a game to be saved
and restored at any time.

TOGGLE SOUND - Turns music on/off

QUIT - Returns user to DOS

PAUSE - move the cursor to the Red Jewel at the top of the screen and click.

V. General Instructions

The instructions in this section deal with overall game play.


The  on-screen  sword  cursor  can  be  manipulated  by the user via mouse,
joystick  or  keyboard.  To move the cursor through the keyboard, press and
hold  down  the  control  key while simultaneously pressing the appropriate
direction key.

To click on an icon, command menu or option box the user can:

Press the left mouse button;

Press the primary joystick button, or;


Selections  can  be  made from option menus by hitting the key representing
the  first character of any word in that menu.  If there is only one option
that starts with that letter, it will be selected.

If  more  than one available option begins with the same letter, the cursor
will  cycle  through each possible command as long as the user continues to
hit  the  same  key.   When  the  cursor  reaches the desired option, press

This  technique  may take a little getting used to, but it is an invaluable
help once mastered.





Conan can be moved in three ways:

MOUSE  -  Move  the  cursor to the location you want Conan to walk to, then
press  and  hold  the  right  mouse  button  and Conan will walk to the new
position.   If  you  want to enter a building, move as close to the door as
possible  using  the right mouse button and then click on the door with the
left  mouse button (This move is not as simple as they say, some doors were
very picky and required several attempts from different positions - BB).

JOYSTICK  - Move the joystick in the direction you want Conan to travel to.
If  you want to enter a building, move as close to the door as possible and
then click on the door with the FIRE button.

KEYBOARD  -  Press the arrow key that corresponds to the direction you want
Conan to walk in.

7- Up left     8- Up     9- Up Right

4- Left        6- Right

1- Down left   2- Down   3- Down Right


There are three styles of combat which Conan must master:

1) Overhand    A chopping downward swing

2) Side Swipe  A swinging, across the body blow

3) Thrust A forward lunge

Before  each  combat, the player must choose Conan to fight in one of these
three  styles.   To do this, select the "Swing" option, which will bring up
the  Select  Attack  menu.   Life meters appear at the bottom of the screen
representing the vitality of each combatant.  When a life meter drains down
to  zero,  that  character  dies.   The  player  may change fighting styles
anytime during combat.

Each of the three fighting techniques can be improved by having Conan visit
Master  Quan  Yo  in  the  Thieves'  Quarter  (see  "Hints for Hyboreans").
Different  styles  of  fighting  are  required  to vanquish a wide range of
enemies,  but  it  remains  for  the  player to learn which moves work best
against various opponents.


Fighting can be conducted via keyboard, joystick or mouse:


Down Arrow Unsheaths and sheaths Conan's sword, signalling the beginning or
end of combat

Up Arrow  Swing sword in manner determined by the player

Left Arrow  Moves Conan left

Right Arrow  Moves Conan right

Keyboard  users  can  press  1(overhand),  2(swing) or 3 (thrust) for quick
changes of fighting style.


Down  Unsheaths  and sheaths Conan's sword, signalling the beginning or end
of combat

Up  Swings sword in manner determined by the player

Left  Moves Conan left

Right Moves Conan right


Hmmm...more trash.....nice picture, like out of the comic books



Left Hold down the right mouse button while moving the mouse left

Right Hold down the right mouse button while moving the mouse right

Strike To strike an opponent, position the cursor on the opponent and press
the left mouse button

Sheath/Unsheath Sword  Press down arrow key.

Exit  Click  on  a door or the edge of a scene (only in the direction Conan
came  from  if the fight is going on).  Conan cannot exit when fighting, so
be sure to sheath his sword first.

Use the menus (click on Conan or the command icons) to change swords, use a
potion, or alter Conan's fighting style.

Objects  cannot  be  clicked  on while a fight is in progress; the opponent
must be defeated before the room can be searched.


Any  command  sequence can be aborted by pressing the ESC key.  This key is
also  used  to  eliminate information or dialog windows once they have been

VI.  Game Levels

There are three types of screen displays;

a) World Level

The World Level allows movement among the various cities of Hyborea.  It is
a  detailed,  topdown  display  of the cities and areas of special interest
known  to  Conan.   Conan  can  only travel to locations shown on the World
Level  screen.   As  Conan learns of new locations, they will appear on the
Hyborean Map.


Leaving  one  of the game area (Shadizar, Larsha, etc.) automatically takes
Conan to this screen.

b) City Level

The City Level offers an angled topdown display of a city or other location
(such  as  an  underground  tunnel system or jungle).  Conan explores these
locations by walking the streets or paths.  He can enter doors (if they are
unlocked)  by simply walking into them.  Conan can also interact with other
characters by walking up to them.  (See "Interaction")

c) Scene Level

The  Scene  Level  is the action-animation screen, with all combat, trading
and  information-gathering  occurring  here.   The  Scene  Level  offers  a
detailed side view of a single location -- store, building, home, etc.

VII. Interaction

Conan  interacts  with  characters  and  objects  differently  depending on
whether the game is in the topdown or side view.


In  the  topdown  sequences,  Conan  can  simply walk up to a character and
automatically  invoke  an  appropriate  menu.  Conan cannot drop objects in
this mode, though he can "Examine" objects such as maps or "Use" his sword.
Here are his options when engaging another character:

* Converse  Allows  Conan  to  speak  to  the character through a series of
menu-driven  interactions.   Invoking  this  command  brings  up  a menu of
possible topics for discussion as well as the Done command to terminate the

* Attack Initiates Combat (see "Combat")

Done   Ends interaction


In  scene view sequences, the player can have Conan interact with people or
objects  by  simply  placing  the sword cursor on that person or object and
clicking on them or it.  This will invoke the appropriate menus.  CONAN THE
CIMMERIAN uses a "smart menu" system in which the parameters of each


Nice  picture  of  Conan  making  it  with three babes while a lion and two
tigers  keep  watch.  The heck with those beer ads, this is what it doesn't
get  better than.  Unfortunately, it scans like garbage with this software.
I'll  be acquiring a new scanning system that might improve on this but for
now I just delete all these graphics.  Brumus Bear


menu are determined by the person or object it is relating to.  If Conan is
in a building with a merchant, for example, his options are defined by what
Conan  can  do  with  a  merchant:  Buy (purchase an object), Sell (sell an
object)  or  Done  (end interaction).  If Conan meets a fortune teller, she
may  offer to read his future, in which case his only options are to accept
or leave.

Not  all  objects  are  significant,  and  Conan will simply not be able to
interact  with  these.  Sometimes, objects are hidden inside other objects.
To  search  any  object  in a scene, simply select it with a cursor.  Conan
will walk to it and search it.  Whatever he finds will be revealed.  He may
then  click  on  that  previously  hidden  object and interact with it.  To
interact  with  an  object, simply click on it and a dialog box will appear
with  choices  to TAKE the object, take ALL objects that are visible in the
room, or DONE.


It  is  occasionally possible to bribe a character, usually an armed guard.
The  opportunity  is  signalled  by  the appearance of Bribery as a command
option.  Invoking this command brings up a special menu consisting of:

* The amount of the bribe Conan is offering

*  A pair of arrows which increase or decrease the amount of the bribe.  In
mouse and joystick versions, players can click on the appropriate icon.  To
raise the ante via keyboard, hit the "+" key; to lower it, hit the "-" key.

* A Cancel command

* An "OK" command which initiates the bribe

VII.  Screen Icons

On the right side of the game screen, etched into the stone border, are the
Command icons, representing the actions available to Conan at that time.

The  Clenched  Fist
The  top  icon  shows  a  clenched  fist.  This first icon serves different
purposes  on  different  levels.   Clicking on this icon while on the WORLD
LEVEL  creates  a  "TRAVEL  TO"  cursor which can be moved to any available
location  on  the  map.   Clicking on that area commands Conan to travel to
that location.


When  playing  at the CITY LEVEL or SCENE LEVEL, however, the Clenched fist
invokes  a  menu  of  possible actions (Use, Examine, Drop, etc.) which are
available  to  Conan.  As with TAKE an object, when dropping, you will have
the option to drop all objects that Conan is carrying.

Status Screen
The  next  icon  shows  Conan's snarling countenance and invokes the Status
Screen, which reflect Conan's current status.  (See "Status Screen")

The  final  icon  displays  Conan's  pouch  and  gives the player access to
Conan's inventory.  A window appears containing a list of the objects Conan
is carrying plus his wealth in Bezants (Hyborean currency).

Listed below are the KEYBOARD EQUIVALENTS to the icons mentioned above:

A - Action (see Clenched Fist above)
I - Inventory (see Inventory above)
S - Status (see Status above)
P - Pause
F1 - Control Panel

IX. Status Screen

The Status Screen displays ratings in the following areas:

* Stamina This represents Conan's number of Hit Points, or points of damage
he  can sustain before succumbing.  The game begins with Conan at 30 out of
30.   The  first  value  represents Conan's current status while the second
represents  the  maximum  amount  of damage he can withstand at that point.
The current value goes down each time Conan takes damage and it goes up (to
the  maximum  possible)  so long as he travels without fighting or if he is
revived  with a drink of White Lotus.  With the completion of each episode,
Conan's maximum Stamina increases until it ultimately reaches 100.

*  Swing  Conan starts the game with a 50 rating in Swing and in all combat
before he has learned alternate styles, this is the default selection.


*  Thrust  Conan  starts the game with 0 Thrust points.  He must pay Master
Quan to learn it.

*  Chop  Conan starts the game with 0 points in the Chop style of fighting.
He must pay Master Quan to learn it.

* Defense The higher Conan's Defense rating, the smaller the chances of his
being hit.  This rating rises with each episode.

*  Stealth  This rating affects the probability of Conan being caught while
attempting  to steal.  This rating increases with the successful completion
of  each theft.  Conan starts off with a 60% Stealth rating, which means he
will  successfully  pull  off  a  theft  60%  of  the time.  Eventually his
successes  will  establish him as a sufficiently skilled thief that he will
almost never be caught.  If Conan is unsuccessful at attempting a theft, he
is carted off to jail where all his money is confiscated.

*  Damage  This deals with the additional damage of +(0- 100%) that will be
done  by  the  specific  sword  Conan is carrying at the time.  The initial
sword  does  zero  extra  damage  while an Enchanted Sword does the maximum
amount  of  extra damage.  More powerful swords are the Steel Sword, King's
Sword and the Enchanted Sword.

X. The World of Hyborea

Locations available to Conan in this game are:

A  large  metropolis  in  central  Zamora,  it is a haven for all manner of
thieves, mercenaries, pickpockets and cut-throats.  Conan must solicit help
and  gain  information from these ruffians in order to fulfill his ultimate
quest of destroying Thoth Amon.

Shadizar Underground
There  are  numerous  underground tunnels connecting various districts with
the walled city.  These catacombs are feared and avoided by local citizens,
and  with  good  reason, but Conan must nonetheless scour these tunnels for
valuable artifacts which he will need to vanquish future adversaries.


Another nice picture, black and white comic book


The Jungle Ruins
On the River Styx, in the kingdom of Shem, sit the ruins of a once-glorious
and  now  long-forgotten  city.   The jungle has long since folded over and
reclaimed  it,  and  the  local population shun it because of rumors of the
atrocities  performed  there  by its last occupants.  Somewhere within this
ruined city squats a huge monolith, which contains the final secret of this
lost metropolis.

Zamboula  probably  doesn't boast about it in its tourist brochures, but it
is  generally  known  as  the  "City  of Skulls".  An ancient ghetto in the
kingdom  of  Shem,  it  is  ruled  by  powerful  sorcerers partial to human
sacrifice.   The  city is redolent with evil legends, many of them at odds,
but  all  outsiders  agree on one thing:  Zamboula is evil; always has been
and  probably always will be.  It is also part of Thoth Amon's dominion, as
he  controls  the  city  through  the  priests  of the Temple of Set, whose
worship thrives in this urban hellhole.

Larsha  is  said  to  be  populated by demons and other non-human creatures
since  its  defeat  at the hands of Thoth Amon more than a century earlier.
Located  in  the kingdom of Koth, it is said that Larsha was given by Thoth
Amon  to  his  minions,  the  Lizard  People.   Nonetheless,  it is full of
valuable  relics and treasures --especially a magical scroll -- which Conan
will need to advance to the Palace of Thoth Amon.

The  capital  of  Aquilonia,  greatest  of  Hyborean  kingdoms.   Alas, the
once-proud  city  has  fallen  before  the dark might of Thoth Amon and now
serves  as  his  headquarters.  It is here Conan will finally encounter the
monster  who  destroyed  his life, in Amon's own palace, surrounded by evil
armies and protected by black magic.

XI.  Hints for Hyboreans

*  Conan  automatically  receives  information as he enters each game area.
Read these messages carefully!

*  Visit Master Quen, the Fighting Instructor, as soon as possible.  Paying
the wizened martial arts instructor can elevate Conan's skill in any of the
three  fighting  styles.  When starting out with no ability in a particular


paying  Quan  improves  that rating by 50 points.  On each following visit,
however,  fewer  and  fewer  points are awarded at an ever-increasing cost.
(In  the  THG version, where money was no problem because you could sell an
item  indefinitely  and  still  retain it, Master Quan was not cheap, about
1400  bezants  for  the first three lessons so don't visit him if you ain't
loaded with dough - Brumus Bear).

*  In  order  to  find  Master  Quan,  talk  to  the  people  of  the city.
Eventually, you will find someone who can direct you to him.

* Read the messages from Akado after Conan dies; they always contain a hint
as  to  what the player did wrong (ex.; "Conan would have known better that
to attack a thief with other than a swing fighting style.").

*  Some  enemies  can  only  be  defeated by a specific type of weapon.  If
traditional  weapons  yield no results against a specific type of opponent,
seek out an appropriate weapon.

*  In  Shadizar,  comparison shop.  See which merchants pay the best prices
and patronize them.

* Taverns are great places to gather information.

*  Between  his backpack and that skimpy loincloth, Conan can hold up to 20
items plus his gold.  There are many more than 20 useful items in the game,
so  you must choose carefully what you wish to keep.  Anything you dump may
well  disappear unless it is dropped in a remote, deserted location or in a
city  temple.   Goods  left  there  will remain untouched and unmolested by
others.   Elsewhere  in  Shadizar,  the  thieves  have no compunction about
"borrowing" unattended possessions.

* Conan can rebuild his health by a brief rest at the nearest inn.  It cost
a bit, but may save time in recovering from damage.

*  Conan will periodically receive maps.  Maps should be examined only when
you  are  in  the  area which they refer to.  For instance, a map of Larsha
should  only  be  examined  in Larsha itself.  They cannot be used in other
locations.   The  location  that  Conan  is  interested  in  will always be
centered  on  the  map and marked with a white square.  Conan's location is
marked  by  a  yellow square.  Small arrows in the upper left corner of the
map indicate which direction to travel to reach the destination.


Another   pic...looks   like  Conan  under  attack  by  either  monkeys  or


XII.  The World of Robert E. Howard

Robert  E.   Howard  is  one  of  those authors whose famous creations have
almost  completely  obscured any public perception of the man himself.  The
prime  mover in the birth of a literary genre known as "Sword and Sorcery,"
Howard's  life  story  is  so nondescript, with the exception of it's final
chapter,  that  most  people  fasten,  instead,  o  n  the  world of brawny
barbarians and sinister wizards he brought to sweating, lusty life.

The Hyborean age is a literary gumbo comprising medieval romanticism, Norse
mythology,  Edgar  Rice  Burroughs  jungle  lore  and  en  endless  army of
sorcerous  bad  guys,  who  practice of magic seems irrevocably tied to the
forces  of  evil.   Howard  covered  all  the bases by creating a series of
varied  lands  for  his  Cimmerian  protagonist to have adventures in.  The
jungles  of  Bamula  provided  Conan  with  native  tribes  to  battle, the
Brarachan  Isles  were  the location of the Cimmerian's sea-going exploits,
sailing  on  the  pirate  ships  of the Red Brotherhood; the border Kingdom
harbored  strange monsters and sinister swamps; Corinthia was a deep, thick
forest  while  Aquilonia  was  the land where Conan became King and married
Zenobia  near the end of his recorded life.  Howard never killed Conan off;
instead,  after  the death of his Queen Zenobia he eventually abdicated the
throne  of  Aquilonia  and  headed  to  the Western Ocean on some ultimate,
unknown adventure.

Conan  is  far  from  Howard's  only creation, though he is easily his most
fullbodied.   Kull,  who ultimately became King Kull, was a more idealistic
and  somewhat  less rough- hewn version of Conan.  Kull walked the Earth in
the  Pre-  Hyborean  days before Atlantis down.  Another of Howard's heroes
was the Solomon Kane, an early American vampire hunter.

But  Conan  is  the  character we remember, thanks largely to the paperback
boom  of the 50s, and, later, the successful Marvel Comics translations and
several  exciting  films starring Arnold Schwarzenegger.  In fact, the next
best  known of Howard's creations is probably Red Sonja, a minor figure who
appears  in  but a single Conan short story, but whose role was expanded by
comics  writer  Roy  Thomas  and  whose visual presentation was cemented by
Artist Franke Thorne.

Conan  has  now  outlived his creator by more than half a century, and he's
still  thieving,  reaving and slaying like a youngster.  Robert E.  Howard,
the  shy  and awkward doctor's son from rural Cross Plains, Texas, was much
more fragile.


Born  in  Peaster, Texas, in 1906, he was dead by 1936, barely thirty years
old.   His first published story, "Spear and Fang", appeared in Weird Tales
magazine  in 1925, the same publication where the first Conan the Barbarian
tale  was  published  seven  years  later.  His eleven year output included
twenty-one  Conan  stories, several of which were completed, after Howard's
death,  by  authors  L.   Sprague  de Camp, and Lin Carter.  Devoted to his
mother,  Howard was devastated by her death in 1936 and, unable to face the
prospect  of a future without her, he committed suicide.  The Conan stories
were  first  collected  in  book  form  in  the  fifties,  which  led  to a
rediscovery  of Howard by the general public.  What would Robert E.  Howard
think  if  he returned today and saw comic books movies and even a computer
game based on the adventures of his Cimmerian rowdy?  He might think it was
sorcery, but, Conan to the contrary, we think he'd approve.


The  End.   There  is also a map of Shadizar in the actual game but it only
shows  about  a dozen locations.  To get you started, the Red Dog Inn is in
the  Northwestern  part  of  town, just in front of the long wall and has a
green  curtain  in  one  window.   Other than that you might as well map it
yourself.  Brumus Bear 9/9/91.