Conan: the Cimmerian manual
- Conan: the Cimmerian
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
TOPDOWN When outside a building or structure, Conan is seen from an angled
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
To click on an icon, command menu or option box the user can:
Press the left mouse button;
Press the primary joystick button, or;
Hit the ENTER/RETURN/INS key.
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.
PICTURE ON PAGE 7 DID NOT SCAN WORTH BEANS
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
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
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.
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
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
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.
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.
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
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,
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
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.