Cybercon III manual
CYBERCON III GAME CONTROLS INTRODUCTION This booklet provides a basic guide on how to play Cybercon III. More information can be discovered by reading the Mission Briefing section, which expands the Game Control instructions. SAVING A GAME To save a game you must first enter a save game room - these can easily be identified by the code wheel logo on the door. Once in the room you will see a communications console - walk up to this console and it will self activate requesting a disk on which to save the game. (This disk need not be formatted as this is done automatically). Once you have inserted the disk, use the sonic key to interrogate and then operate the console - this will actually save the game. (Only one saved game per disk). RESTORING A SAVED GAME There are two ways to restore a saved game: After you boot the game, or hit ESC during the game, a menu will appear allowing the user to either start a fresh game, continue the game (if relevant) or restore a saved game. Before selecting the restore option make sure your saved game disk is in the drive. If you die during play and a saved game disk is in the drive, you will automatically be restored to the position of that saved game. CONTROLLING THE POWER ARMOUR Movement of the Power Armour (PA) is controlled by the joystick. Push forward to move forward, pull back to move back. Pushing the joystick left or right turns the PA clockwise or Anticlockwise. By pressing the FIRE button and moving the joystick left or right simultaneously, the PA can be made to `shuffle' to the side. Finally, simultaneously press the FIRE button and operate the joystick to tilt the PA's head. Press forward to look down, pull back to look up. If the PA's sensors are on-line, the Pitch indicator shows the altitude of the helmet, and the compass shows the orientation of the Armour. Pressing F10 (or a sustained press of the FIRE button whilst moving) causes the PA to Jump (if Power-assist is on-line). The longer F10 is held down, the more power is transferred to the Jump (the maximum depends on the number of Energy Banks on-line and other systems energised). The Ring Indicator shows the power build-up. Some lateral movement (using the joystick) is possible through automatic manoeuvring jets. Note: the Power-Assisted Landing function is used automatically if the PA `falls', provided that Power-Assist is on-line. ENERGY BANK INDICATORS/CONTROL The Energy Bank indicators show the current reserves in the PA's integral matrix and any supplemental Energy Banks. If the bar is red, the Bank has a finite energy reserve, drained from Fuel Cells. If green, the Bank is powered by a small fusion reactor which has effectively limitless power, although it takes time to recharge. If you discover an Energy Bank in the Complex (they look like rectangular columns), you can use it as a supplemental power plant by placing it in the backpack. It automatically fills one of the vacant Energy Bank slots. Toggle the four supplemental Banks on/off-line by using F1-F4 (but remember they need to be `fuelled' from captured Energy Cells, just like the integral Matrix). The more Banks on-line, the more power is available for the PA, Shield, Weapons Systems, etc. Power is always shared equally between on-line PA systems. Energy can be drawn from or supplied to certain apparatus within the complex via the Energy Transfer Probe (ETP). PRIMARY MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS (PMS) The PMS controls the PA's main functions. The LEFT/RIGHT cursor keys select the system; UP toggles the selected system on/off-line. The first system is the PA's Power-Assist. On-line, this gives the player better control over the Armour, and access to the Powered Jump function and Power-Assisted Landing. The second system is the PA's Defence Field, which can absorb damage from hostile fire. The third system actually controls the status of a variety of Secondary Systems, including the ETP, Weapons, and the Sonic Key. The fourth system is the Auto-Repair which, if placed on-line repairs damaged systems. The status of individual systems can be ascertained through the status bars beneath the systems icons. Again, use the LEFT/RIGHT cursor keys to select the system, plus DOWN cursor to place that system in the Auto- Repair net. Power allocated to the Auto-Repair is shared equally between selected damaged systems. The fifth PMS controls the Sensors. If placed on-line (this system's power consumption is minimal), the Ring Indicator acts as a Doppler Detector with a 360 degree sweep. Targets are indicated by a green light. The Sensor system also controls the Pitch indicator, the Compass and the Cameras. SECONDARY SYSTEMS (SS) Secondary Systems are placed on-line by selecting PMS switch 3 and pressing UP cursor. They are controlled through the SS Display. The SS Display operates in three Modes. The 9 and 3 keys on the numeric keypad scroll through the three Modes, and the lights on the right of the display show which is currently active. WEAPONS Mode One allows the player to select one of four different systems to be active. The 7 and 1 keys on the numeric keypad scroll through the four items, with the currently selected item both appearing in the PMS display, and being highlighted in the Secondary Systems Display. The first unit is the Plasma Projector. This is mounted on a pod beside the helmet visor, and fires directly forward. Press FIRE to operate the weapon. The second unit is vacant at the beginning of the game, but could be used for a second weapon or for another device. The first applicable device picked up will be loaded into this slot automatically; should you wish to change devices, drop both, and pick up the actively required device first (the other will be stored in the backpack). The third unit is the Energy Transfer Probe (ETP). If the ETP is selected and on-line, it flashes when brought into the proximity of a system with which it can interact. The ETP can drain power from Fuel Cells to on-line Energy Banks. It can also provide power to start-up Field Generators and other systems. The fourth unit is the Sonic Key. If this is selected and brought on-line, it alters the Icon Strip Display to show the sonic codes known to that Key. To operate, first select 1-3 icons from the Strip by scrolling the icons with the < and > keys and using SPACE to select. Selected codes are transferred to the Key Display to the right (loading a fourth code clears the display). Press FIRE or RETURN to activate ("play") the Sonic Key. If the correct code(s) are played, the Key can operate almost any device in the Complex. If the Key is played without any codes loaded (or if F9 is pressed), it will Interrogate a system within the Complex, seeking to discover the right combination. This can be attempted more then once. An Interrogable system within range of the Key causes its on-line indicator to flash red/green. If the Interrogation is successful, the Key will draw the code from the system, and this can then be played back to operate that system. Should the PA's Key not know the relevant Code, Interrogate will be unsuccessful. However, some systems can give the Volunteer extra codes, which can then be used from then on. SECONDARY SYSTEMS - CAMERAS The other two Modes for the Secondary Systems Display refer to the operation of Remote Cameras. Mode Two is Reception Mode. If the Sensory Array PMS is on-line, pictures from a camera which has been placed and activated can be viewed. Up to four cameras can be monitored, and the active camera is selected using the 7 and 1 keys on the keypad. Mode Three operates in much the same way, but allows the joystick to be used to control the camera (in Mode Two, it still controls the PA). Standard cameras can pan left or right and can be zoomed in or out using the joystick. By pressing FIRE simultaneously moving the joystick up or down, the Camera tilts up or down, in the same way as the PA. The special `Parrot' camera (Camera 1) is mobile and, therefore, the joystick actually controls its movement through space as the PA is moved. It cannot be Zoomed in and out; however it can fly closer to its target, which has the same effect. Note that by pressing 5 on the keypad, you can have the Parrot return to you, provided that you are in the same room. TAKING/DROPPING OBJECTS The Cellular Backpack carried by the PA can carry up to 16 items. Except when used with the Sonic Key, the Icon Strip shows those items which are carried in the backpack. To drop/place an item, select it by using the < and > keys to scroll through the items, and SPACE to select. Certain items require a Sonic Key sequence to be activated. These can be Interrogated to obtain the code, using the normal procedure. Items can be picked up throughout the Complex by reversing the procedure. First, make sure the Icon Strip window is over a vacant space, then approach the object. When it flashes in the window, it can be picked up by pressing SPACE. MISSION ABSTRACT THIS DOCUMENT IS CLASSIFIED UPMOST SECRET This document, and the enclose holo-stills from classified vid-cube footage, contains all the information the War Council of the Democratic Union possesses about Cybercon III, its central Brain Stem, and the Defence Complex at Mount Adam. Thanks to intelligence gathered at enormous cost, the WCDU has discovered the previously-unknown location Brain Stem of the Cybercon III system. The Defence Complex was constructed alongside the development of Cybercon to provide a sterile, hermetically-sealed environment for the Brain Stem, which is the core Command Centre for all Cybercon's activities. Sensory and reconnaissance data indicate that the Defence Complex was designed to provide access to technicians and inspectors through a heavily guarded entrance on the west side of the mountain. This was sealed by Cybercon at the beginning of the current emergency. However, it seems that a second entrance on the south side was also constructed, and was left as a deliberate blind spot or fail-safe by Cybercon's creators. This entrance will admit a single operative, after which it places an energy seal across the portal until the operative returns, or the Complex's sensors register no life signs. It is proposed that a single Volunteer enter the Defence Complex, with a view to achieving one of two favourable outcomes. The first is the complete neutralisation of the Brain Stem, which would effectively bring to an immediate halt all Cybercon's activities worldwide. Failing that, the operative should seek to dismantle the force wall that shields the Complex, so that additional forces can be admitted to achieve the primary objective. MISSION PARAMETERS; OBJECTIVES AND RESOURCES The Volunteer will enter the Complex by the southern entrance at the earliest opportunity, in co-ordination with a diversionary show of force at the main entrance by WCDU forces. The Defence Complex is a multi-layered, tri-dimensional combat environment, designed to provide a graduated response to any attack on Cybercon III's Brain Stem. It must be stressed that, like Cybercon III, the Defence Complex has an auto-diagnostic defence capability, which uses its resource to complete its function, free from human agency or control. However, there are two key advantages for the success of the mission. First, although self-contained, the Complex was not designed to completely deny all human interface. Before the Cataclysm, accredited human agents were admitted to carry out construction, logistic and maintenance missions. This means it is not a function of the Defence Complex to isolate itself and the Brain Stem, and there exist within it control centres, equipment and facilities designed for human operation. Second, to the best of our knowledge, Cybercon III is not controlling the Defence Complex; the two systems remain largely independent of one another, as they were designed to be. Cybercon appears to have raised the Defence Condition of the Complex to its highest rating, hence the force wall. It is also sensible to suppose that Cybercon can dispose of its own resources within the complex. However, it seems that the Complex is not operating in a way to deny all human access. Once he has gained admittance, the Complex should be user-friendly to the Volunteer at a basic level. That is to say, there will be heat and light, no unshielded radiation sources, and all interfaces - such as doors and lists - operate normally. The Volunteer should, therefore, be able to move around relatively freely, within the normal design constraints of the Complex. To further enhance the prospect of a successful mission, the Volunteer will be equipped with a Maintenance Exo-Skeleton (MES), which used to the common protective equipment for technicians and programmers working with Cybercon. The MES was discovered at a military airbase abandoned as surplus by Cybercon, and has been fully upgraded and reclassified as PA. The armour's value is that it shares common systems with all Cybercon-originated equipment - including the Defence Complex. The Volunteer should be able to use the PA in the Complex environment, and should find additional systems and internal interfaces will be compatible with the PA. To augment the utility of the PA, as much ancillary equipment as has been possible to configure to its interface has been added. Defensive equipment has been taken from a disabled Cyber-wheel robot, providing the Volunteer with a 25mm Plasma Generator and full Stasis Field generation. Additionally, a Sonic Key, the basic interface tool for communicating with the Defence Complex, has been equipped. It is important to recognise that - due to the extreme urgency of the mission - evaluation tests in the equipment has been limited. However, its ancestry with the Cybercon system should mean it provides adequate resources for the job. THE HISTORY OF CYBERCON The following information is provided as background. The WCDU cannot be sure that the information is wholly correct, nor does it surmise that it provides any intelligence directly relevant to the mission. Cybercon's origins lie in the power struggle between the Confederate Democratic Union of States and the Alliance of Holy States, latterly known as the Southern Alliance. The residual weaponry of totalitarian regimes overthrown by the mass revolutionary movements which pre-figured the Alliance gave it an immediate advantage in the initial phases of the war with the Union. The Union's technological advantage was partially offset by these weapons, and by the sheer weight of numbers on the Alliance side. During the first phase of the war, when parts of Europe were overrun, the Union was unable to cope with the command and control of its diverse weapons systems. Control foundered at the interface between human policy-makers and electronic `minds' of the advanced weaponry. At this point, amidst great secrecy, Union scientists provided an answer:- Cybercon, a cybernetic artificial intelligence which did not need human guidance for individual commands, but which operated within the set parameters of the Union's requirements. Only Cybercon, it was argued, could operate the military resources of the Union swiftly enough to meet the multiple threats in each theatre. The overwhelming nature of the threat to Union security was the simple justification for the enormous expense of the project. When Cybercon came on-line, people throughout the Union breathed a sigh of relief. As it took control of the Union arsenal, as it developed new defensive weapons, and as it utilised those weapons with incredible response rates across the globe, the threat from the Alliance began to recede. But ultimate peace could not be obtained by holding the enemy at bay. Though the Alliance's primitive defence capability had been neutralised, the potential of billions of people might still be exploited; the Alliance might still overwhelm Cybercon. With this in mind, the Union continued to pour money into development, and the finest cybernetic scientists of their generation were co-opted into the project to conduct advanced research. Cybercon evolved into a second entity, now given the power to make offensive war against the enemy. The resulting collapse of the Alliance was rapid. Cybercon II's processing was now even more intricate, yet still incredibly fast, allowing it to plan and control its offensive campaign to a degree unimaginable to any human commander. Within three months, the final outcome of the war was no longer in doubt, although it took six years to quell the last bastions of the Alliance. During that time, Cybercon passed into the third stage of its evolution, and the cloak of secrecy which had veiled its activities became an impenetrable wall. Although outward signs of Cybercon's activities remained - at the airbases and missile sites it maintained and utilised, and through its communications with its human `masters' - the location of its key centres became the subject of almost mythical conjecture. Cybercon was hidden away even from the natural curiosity of its political overlords in the Union; increasingly, it also reduced its dependence on humanity for any of its vital functions. Powerful armoured robots conducted its war operations, others ran factories producing vital equipment and stores. Slowly, the number of human beings directly interfacing with the various sub-systems dwindled. Cybercon III was independent, self-sufficient - and answerable only to its own logic programs. Almost inevitably, there came the disastrous price to be paid for such folly. Like a thunderclap from a clear sky, Cybercon released the full range of its advanced robotic and cybernetic weaponry against the world. Simultaneously, every great city in the world was vaporised by nuclear weapons, fired from bases which were themselves rendered inoperative by auto- destruct mechanisms. Within hours, all human agencies of government and policing were destroyed. The survivors, abandoned and helpless, asked "Who did this to us? Which of our enemies has Cybercon failed to defeat?" The answer became clear only slowly - Cybercon itself was the culprit. Humanity had made the mistake of divesting too much responsibility to a soul-less machine. Cybercon interpreted its prime directive - the preservation of the Union and saw the greatest danger to the Union as its own people; had it not destroyed all other threats? Following such remorseless logic; Cybercon preserved the Union by destroying all within it. Even the destruction of its bases and outward sub-systems was deliberate; with no viable target for them to be used against, they were destroyed to prevent any part of their technology entering human hands. Human survivors, in rural areas, wastelands and sheltered country, were easily herded and culled by Cybercon's advanced Cyber-wheel robots. But a few were capable of resistance. The revived WCDU has fought Cybercon for several years, with some small success against lone Cyber-wheels or isolated sub- systems. But those success have merely focused the mind of the machine back on the human problem. Once more Cyber-wheels are rolling across the land, seeking out survivors and nests of resistance. This time, Cybercon will not rest until all human life has been eradicated. THE DEFENCE COMPLEX The WCDU discovered the whereabouts of Cybercon's Brain Stem through good fortune and painstaking research. An exploding Cyber-wheel broke upon a vestigal underground command facility dating from the late 21st century. Within, the WCDU discovered theoretical documents about a self-supporting command centre, with access to all necessities within its perimeter, and yet which would be small enough to be practically invisible. The ideal location, the document theorised, would be beneath a mountain which had both rich mineral resources and flowing ground water sufficient for industrial power and cooling purposes. The Brain Stem - Cybercon's central command facility - remained undiscovered at that time, despite all efforts. Cybercon's communications systems were deliberately intricate and arcane, to make tracing signals back to their source impossible. However, the original belief had been that the site could be tracked by monitoring all the activity of Cybercon's robots. Sooner or later, it was theorised, equipment, fuel, replacement parts or other items would have to be delivered there. The document showed this might not be the case - Cybercon's Brain Stem could be completely isolated. The WCDU's resources were switched at once to a major search to find a site with the requisite resources. That site is Mount Adam. Surviving geological data records showed Mount Adam to be a site with great potential. It is undistinguished and lies some distance away from pre- Cataclysm urban centre or geological `hot' zone. Reconnaissance then discovered two heavily-camouflaged entrances, both shielded by an impenetrable force wall. These entrances must date from an early incarnation of the Cybercon, when human agents had access to the facility. Cybercon appears to have attempted to further conceal the main entrance by means of triggered land-slides. Our knowledge of what lies beyond the Force Wall is extremely limited, but we do have some intelligence from early vid-film taken inside the complex during Cybercon's earlier incarnations. The Defence Complex's sole function is to provide security for Cybercon's Brain Stem, although the facility also manufactures and recycles robots, and operates mineral mines, power plants and other stations. The Force Wall and Mount Adam itself provide proofing against thermo-nuclear blast or conventional externally-supplied high explosive. The Defence Complex is designed to provide proofing against infiltration by commando, terrorist or special forces - a sign that the design of the Complex was supposed to permit more general human access. Captured vid-film shows the bulk of the complex consists of inter-connecting passageways, rooms, shafts and trenches. In theory, the Complex could have several thousand such units, although the likely limit is about 500. Further, the Complex is divided into a number of discrete sectors, which connect only at a limited number of points. The Sectors have extremely variable designs, aimed at disrupting intruders' learning patterns, and to test their capabilities against a number of different defence environments. Passive defence plays a considerable part in the Complex's design. Approved human agents were equipped and trained to access only those parts of the Complex required by whatever mission profile they had. Low-grade security was provided through a Sonic Key, which would be issued to the operative before he entered the Complex. These keys exist for all manner of Cybercon's facilities, and operate by playing audible tones to a sensory instrument. By issuing a key containing a limited number of tones, the Complex effectively restricted the equipment any operative could use, and complicated the approach routes to the Brain Stem. Although some doors within the complex operate sensing the approach of a human or robot, others require a Sonic Key code. The Union has obtained such a Key, which gives the Volunteer low-grade access to most levels of the Complex. The operation of the Key is the same whatever the end device may be. In some cases, the required code will be displayed on or near the instrument; in others, the operative would normally have been expected to know the required code. Note that elevators carry two displays. The first shows which floor you are on, and which others the elevator serves. The second shows if the elevator is on your floor, and if it is ascending/descending. Inside the elevator car, the Sonic Key sequence for each floor is indicated on the rear wall. One important refinement has been added to the Sonic Key supplied to the Volunteer. This is an interrogate function. By activating the Key with no tones entered, the Volunteer can interrogate the device's sensor to obtain the code the device requires. This should be an invaluable aid to moving around the Complex. It is extremely likely that other key codes are hidden within the complex, which give access to the most sensitive parts of the Complex. The Volunteer should make every effort to locate these codes. Communication will be virtually impossible once the operative is inside the Complex. The Complex is so tightly sealed that normal communications are impossible. However, the historical record shows it is equipped with a number of visi-cubes which provide external agencies with views of the Complex (we have included captured stills with this briefing) through a number of transmission interfaces. Any useful information which would be of benefit to a reserve mission should be communicated through this device. Other Cybercon installations are known to have used toroidal (magnetic plasma bottle) fusion reactors, and it is likely this is the case at Mount Adam. It should be possible to tap into power sources at certain points in the mission to replenish supplies. It may also be possible to remove power from the complex by shutting down or disabling these reactors. It seems unlikely that this will be sufficient to complete the mission, and it will certainly shut off all power to elevators and doors. Given that it is wholly isolated as a system, Cybercon's Brain Stem and the Defence Complex must have internal means for the appropriation, utilisation and processing of local resources. Central manufacturing and repair facilities will break down and rebuild robots on a regular schedule, and disabled equipment will be brought to such facilities by drones for recycling. Intelligence suggests that a red/green chevron marker is a symbol for doors and robots servicing this facility; blocking such doors may have a beneficial effect on the mission. We have no idea of the location or description of the Force Wall's controls. Clearly, however, the dismantling of this Wall would be a useful success in the event of the primary mission's failure. ROBOTS AND FIXED DEFENCES Though separate to the main Cybercon system, the Defence Complex provides a self-contained environment for the Brain Stem and acts as a cellular, multi- threat neutralising defence shield. It is programmed to provide a graduated, variable response to hostile intrusion through both fixed and passive means. Each Sector of the Complex is designed to make different demands on the aptitudes, resources and capabilities of the aggressor. Furthermore, its defence programme algorithms will be tuned to `learn' from the actions of the intruder, and to alter the composition of its counter-attacks. Many of its defences are designed to disorientate, alarm and confuse opponents unfamiliar with the layout of the complex. False or transparent floors, disguised equipment and twisting, random access routes slow down and dull an aggressors progress. There are also fixed Plasma Projectors guarding key doorways, trenches and walkways. These are extremely hazardous, and the WCDU knows of no way in which they can be deactivated short of finding a shut-down Sonic Key code, if such exists. However, the greatest threat to the Volunteer comes from the robots within the Complex, particularly since there is a very real possibility that Cybercon has acquired some control over key robots and defence systems. The WCDU has no indication of the scale or complexity of these, but we must expect certain design constants to be followed. This allows us to make several generalised comments about what to expect, even though a small number of Cybercons robots have been properly studied. The most important of these is that all Cybercon robots are modular and utilise the same components. Though they may preform different functions, and have very different external appearances, they are all essentially similar. This follows on from the importance of the robot `factories'; these break down robots to their constituent parts, recycling parts which pass various tests into new robots. This same design criteria explains also why it is that critically-damaged robots throw out undamaged systems and parts for recovery and recycling. This may be of considerable benefit to the Volunteer, since the robots usually discard Fuel Cells as a priority, to avoid these rupturing and corrupting the other equipment. POWER PLANT: Most are powered by electro-magnetic derives fed from internal energy cells. These are heavily armoured, and are usually centrally-located to distribute the weight. The Fuel Cells lock in through access ports, and can be explosively jettisoned if the robot is endangered. SENSORY APPARATUS: According to function, the Robots are given on of three or four sensory arrays, normally masked behind a dome or screen high on its surface. Cybercon robots are given sensory arrays appropriate to their function. The most basic will have Doppler Detectors of variable resolution levels, capable of detecting movement. Others have simple EM Scanners, capable of detecting electro-magnetic radiation, such as would be caused by equipment use. Finally, the most advanced systems carry optical sensing systems, including infra-red or image-intensifying enhancements, along with a CPU capable of shape/pattern analysis. All systems are then linked to a targeting computer, which controls the on-board weapons systems. WEAPONS SYSTEMS: Cybercon robots carry various high-yield Plasma Projector systems. Their weapons are controlled by an extremely sophisticated Targeting Module, which has a fast learning curve, and can predict enemy movements from a number of constants. In the Cyber-wheels, the weapon is mounted through the hub or axle, although some have forward-firing hub weapon. The more advanced systems have a high-angle, multi-directional weapon mounting. The Cyber-wheel is the standard type, consisting of a simple wheel, or pair of wheels connected by an axle. The tread of the wheel, which is made of some inert substance, contains small sensory devices which read directional information from small wires buried in the floor. The main casing is made of a highly-reflective (to nullify laser fire) poly-carbonised metal alloy, shielding the main drive unit, power plant and logic systems. Manipulation, interface and weapons systems are housed in the hub or axle. The second type is the Nemesis, a floating robot which uses power magnetic field generators to rise above the surface and control movement. These robots have the more advanced sensory and control systems, usually housed in the `head', or in high mountings on the body. Most have advanced Field Generators, capable of providing shielding in addition to the poly-carbonised reactive armour. Weapons systems are interior mounted, usually from a high vantage point, although some of these robots have them placed behind the chest armour. THE POWER ARMOUR Before the Cataclysm, Cybercon's interface with humanity was at a very high level. Human technicians constructed and serviced plant, oversaw equipment and software installation and monitored all Cybercon's activities. Some of this work was extremely hazardous. For the more dangerous tasks, operatives were equipped with suites of powered armour, manufactured by the same factories as Cybercon's robots. The Maintenance Exo-Skeleton (MES) the WCDU has adapted for this mission is the only known suit to have survived the post-Cataclysm era. Cybercon's destruction of its bases may have been necessitated by its desire to prevent humans gaining access to such equipment. The Armour is designed to the same exacting specifications as Cybercon's own equipment, and shares a number of unique design characteristics with those systems. The Power Armour is manufactured from 9mm Multi-Phase Reactive Bio- Ceramic/Titanium plate. It weighs just over 4 tonnes and stands three metres high. It has a joint at the waist, allowing the operative to gain access, which is locked with a Bio-Ceramic seal. It is otherwise seamless. The suit is capable of operating in radiation-hot areas, and provides full Environmental Isolation and Recycling, with on-board filters capable of resisting all known nerve, chemical or biological agents. The Volunteer controls servo-assisted movement through sensory apparatus attached to the operative's leg and foot muscles. Muscle output is magnified ten-fold, allowing the suit to be `walked' with minimum effort though with little capacity for inertia damping. Maximum speeds of 45kph can be attained in this mode. However, the suit's power source can be circuited into the leg hydraulics, providing pico-second reaction tomes, and speeds of up to 90kph. With Power-Assist on-line, three other benefits are conferred on the Armour. The servo-assisted walk generates considerable momentum and this makes movement relatively clumsy, especially for an untrained operative. With Power-Assist, inertia-damping systems are coupled to the hydraulics, considerably enhancing control, particularly when the suit is running at full power. Second, with the suit powered-up, the hydraulics can be expanded rapidly to provide a Power Jump, capable of lifting the Armour up to 20 metres. Some lateral guidance can also be gained by small ram-jets at the armour's waist. Thirdly, the hydraulics provide extremely powerful suspension, allowing the Armour to drop from some considerable height without sustaining damage. The power supply comes from a high density Energy Matrix, which can be `idled' safely, with no radiation threat to the user. Moreover, because it uses the same fuel system as the Defence Complex, it is assumed ample energy resources will be available. The Energy Transfer Probe (ETP) can tap into (or feed) various Defence Complex systems. If the Probe is selected and on-line, the indicator flashes in the presence of a system which can interface with the ETP. Power Cells can be drained of energy to top up Energy Banks, or power can be provided to Field Generators or other equipment. Energy is a primary concern on the Mission, since the Armour's integral Energy Matrix has a limited capacity, which is quickly drained if all of the suits systems are on. The Power Armour has the capacity to place on-line up to four Energy Banks. Not only will such additional energy sources provide a longer mission profile, but virtually ever one of the Primary Management Systems works more efficiently with more power on-line. In particular, the Power-Assist, Energy Shield, Plasma Blaster and Auto Repair functions all operate on an enhanced gradient with greater supplies of energy. As already mentioned, Fuel Cells, such as those ejected by damaged robots, can be tapped to replenish the Energy Matrix or supplemental Banks (note: their ballistic shape has lead to suggestions they may also be used as ammunition for some kind of missile launcher). The Cells, however, have a finite capacity. It may be possible to recover small fusion reactors from disabled robots or other systems in the Complex. A Fusion reactor plugged into an Energy Bank would provide infinite energy within the mission context, though time must be allowed for the Bank to recharge after heavy use. Finally, the Volunteer should look out for actual Energy Banks, which may be discarded by robots, and which can be fueled by Cells as mentioned above. Energy Banks, along with ancillary equipment, can be locked into the Power Armour through the Cellular EM Backpack. This contains 16 storage bays, accessed through the remote magnetic `arm' (actually a magnetic field tractor system) on the right shoulder, which can pick up or set down objects. With the Icon Strip Display functioning, any object which can be picked up and held in the Backpack flashes in the window when within tractor range. Items can be discarded at any time. The Pilot sits in a harness within the body of the armour. Controls are handled in various ways, designed to make the best use of the various areas of his or her brain. A Cerebral Scan helmet, capable of detecting and decoding electro-chemical and brainwave signals, acts as an override management system, attuning to the `instincts' and decision-making parts of the brain. As seen above, movement of the Power Armour is controlled and powered by a low-energy `walking' movement by the pilot. Finally, small micro-switch controls in the `arm' recesses allow the pilot to manually control functions such as camera operation, weapons guidance and the orientation of the armour. The Primary Management Systems can be switched on or off at the operative's command, allowing him to control energy output. The first is Power-Assist. The second is the integral Energy Shield, the third controls the Secondary Systems, the fourth the Auto-Repair, and the fifth the Remote Surveillance equipment. Although the basic MES unit was discovered unarmed at an airbase (shielded from destruction, incidently, through being buried under rubble by a freak accident moments before a Cybercon strike), the common systems it shares with all Cybercon units means that WCDU have been able to provide a Plasma Projector taken from a disabled robot and mounted on the Power Armour's helmet. Cybercon's Plasma Projectors generate super-heated `balls' of energy, and firing these over ranges of up to 500 metres. The projector draws on the Armour's power supply, and recharges in seconds, particularly when more then one Energy Bank is on-line. Plasma weapons remain the ultimate short-range battlefield weapon. No material has been developed which can withstand them, nor can the energy be reflected or dissipated as is the case with conventional projectile or laser weapons. However, Cybercon does have a defence, in the form of Energy Stasis Fields. These fields have the capacity to dissipate plasma energy, greatly reducing their impact. The Power Armour's Shield generates such a Field, interacting with the active armour systems. The power drain is considerable, and it is not recommended that the Shield be powered-up except in confrontational situations. Note that Cybercon's most advanced robot designs have integral shields. Certain types are equipped with Field Generators, which, properly aligned, create an energy-field `skin' over the robot to protect it from blast or radiation. Once removed from a robot, however, the same Generators can be used to create cube-shaped `walls' of energy. Obtaining such items would be extremely beneficial to the mission. The fourth PMS is the Auto-Repair function. This is a sophisticated monitoring and recycling unit, which can provide replacement parts or bypass systems for virtually all the Power Armour's many functions - including itself. The operative can immediately gauge the status through the Helmet Display. By putting the AR system on-line, and selecting those systems to be repaired, the operative can maintain systems integrity following any misadventure. Obviously, if the AR unit is itself damaged, priority should be given to its repair. The AR system also works best with more power on-line, and with the other PMS systems shut down. The final PMS controls the Sensory arrays. With this on-line, several sub- systems are activated. First the Doppler Detection operates through the Ring Indicator; moving objects show up as green lights on the display. This takes no account of the distance or altitude of the object. Second, the Ring Indicator functions as a Jump Gauge during powered leaps, and as an impact Gauge at the end of a fall. Third, the Pitch and Compass Indicators come on- line. Finally, the Sensors can receive incoming data from remote cameras. We have obtained two standard cameras and placed them in the Power Armour's Cellular Backpack. The Volunteer can operate four cameras altogether, of either type. Clearly, if one could be found, a Parrot would be extremely useful. The standard cameras (plus any others discovered in the Complex) are best placed at a junction or other point from which an attack might be launched. Alternatively, the status of certain rooms within the Complex - such as power plants - could be monitored from afar. Other equipment, such as alternative weapons or specialised security devices, can be either operated directly with the PA system or remotely. The ballistic shape of the Fuel Cells suggest that these could be fired from some kind of Missile Launcher, if such could be discovered. More advanced control devices similar to the Sonic Key may also exist. Such items can be affixed to the left shoulder port on the backpack, and operated through the Secondary Systems Display. Other equipment, such as a captured Field Generator would have to be placed on the floor before activation. The Sonic Key will operate such devices as they will most other systems within the Complex. Most require the correct Key sequences to be played. The Interrogate function will trick certain of these systems to divulge their codes, and additional codes for more advanced equipment must be sought. FINAL INSTRUCTIONS (1) Fuel is your lifeline. You must find additional sources of energy quickly, to provide more power for the PA. The most readily-available source are the robots; these will eject Fuel Cells or Energy Banks if critically damaged (and some of the larger robots have self-sustaining nuclear power, which would reduce your dependance). For that reason alone, it is important not to waste firepower in destroying robots - use the minimum amount of force. Create stores of cells in safe parts of the Complex. It is also conceivable that the central energy sources of the Complex itself might be tapped. (2) You can husband your limited power supply through switching Primary systems off. However, it is not recommended that the Shield or Sensors be left off when entering a potentially `hot' area. Finding a safe place to hide allows you to turn off all other systems while repairs take place. Always repair the Auto-Repair first; it will then service the other systems more efficiently. (3) Field Generators in their unattached (cuboid) form have a variety of potential uses. Certainly, they can provide a shield from hostile fire, or to block a doorway. Think creatively. Your PA's Jump capability means you could shelter behind a field, and pop up to fire at hostile forces. Remember to keep the Field Generator replenished with fuel for as long as it is useful to you, and turn it off (with the Sonic Key) when it is not. (4) The Parrot camera is an invaluable tool. If used carefully, it makes an excellent scout (although it has no means to open locked doors or to operate elevators). It can also provide a remote means to plan an ambush, or to keep watch while your power down the shield and weapons to make repairs. (5) Observation is the key! The Complex's original makers and the technicians who served it were only human - there are many places where they left mnemonics and other memory-jogging devices to remind them how to activate systems or bypass destructive equipment. There may even be a schematic map of the Complex somewhere. You must also keep searching for additional Sonic Key codes; for every obstacle, there is a solution, somewhere. (6) Communications Rooms are your only means of contact with the outside world. Use them whenever you can - you never know when you might run into something lethal round the next corner. Treat them just like a Save Game option in one of those 20th Century computer games - we might just be able to pick up from where you left off. (7) Watch out for blast damage from explosions. Watch out for your own weapons if you fire them in an enclosed space. Watch out for fixed Plasma Generators. Watch out for any energy-carrying devices. In fact, just watch out for everything! The top half of the Power Armour is winched down, and locked in place. The scurrying technicians make their last adjustments, then you are unceremoniously wheeled out towards the Defence Complex. The suit comes alive as you activate the Internal Energy Matrix. A voice crackles over the ear implant. "Time to go son. We've just got time to pass on a few last-minute enhancements the back room boys added in the last few minutes." "First, you can get a more detailed look at what the cameras pick up. Press F5 while a camera is active, and the view will go to full screen. Press F5 again to return to the normal view." "You can record the Power Armour's PMS settings at any time by pressing SHIFT + FUNCTION KEY. This allows you to set up configurations for Combat, Auto-Repair, Jump etc. You can access stored configurations by pressing CONTROL + FUNCTION KEY. Its up to you which configurations you store where." "Finally, though its pretty hard to map the inside of the Complex, you might be able to make some sort of Topographic plan. We've worked out as much as we can of the Complex, and that information is now in your possession. Each time you pause the game by pressing F8m you can get the ID NUMBER for the room you are in. That might make it easier to keep a record of the Complex. The rest is up to you." "Thats all we can do to help, boy. Now, all we can do is wish you luck... and watch and wait. You come back now... y'hear!" KEY SUMMARY MAIN KEYBOARD F1-F4 Energy bank on/off toggle for each of the four banks (if fitted). F9 Interrogate (activate Sonic Key in interrogate mode). F10 Jump. Hold down to build up jump power to max dependant on power available to PA. Release to jump. <> Slide icon strip left/right to select backpack item or Sonic Key item. SPACE Pick up/drop an object (depending on weather item selected) or load icon into Sonic Key for playback. RETURN Play the Keycode loaded into the Sonic Key. S+FKEY Save current PA setup onto function key. C+FKEY Restore PA setup from that function key. NUMERIC PAD 9 & 3 Move the multi-function display between its three modes 7 & 1 Weapon/camera select, depending upon mode. CURSOR KEYS LEFT/RIGHT Select PA system for control. UP Toggle selected PA system on/off. DOWN Toggle selected PA system repair status on/off.
Back to the game