It Came from the Desert manual
- It Came from the Desert
IT CAME FROM THE DESERT
SAVING YOUR GAME
To save games while playing IT CAME FROM THE DESERT, you must initialize a
disk before playing. The disk must be named DSAVE. See the owner's manual
for your computer for instructions on initializing and naming disks. Each
save game disk will hold one saved game. To save a game in progress, go to
the location map. You may save your game by clicking on the SAVE GAME icon
in the map's upper left hand corner. You will be prompted to insert your
DSAVE disk into a drive. After your game has been saved, follow the
onscreen prompt to insert your game disk into a drive.
LOADING A SAVED GAME
From the LOAD GAME screen (which follows the game's opening sequence),
choose the LOAD SAVED GAME option. Follow the prompts to insert your DSAVE
disk into a drive. After your saved game has loaded, follow the onscreen
prompts to insert your game disk into a drive.
PAUSING A GAME
Press the left mouse button to pause the game. Press the left mouse button
again to resume play. You may pause at any point in the game, even during
AFTER THE GAME ENDS
If the game ends and you wish to play again, you must insert Reel 1 into
the internal disk drive, then reboot your computer by pressing
Control-Amiga-Amiga (CTRL-A-A, or CTRL-C=-A on some Amiga 500's)
simultaneously. After playing IT CAME FOR THE DESERT, you should turn your
computer off and wait about 30 seconds before attempting to boot another
A spin-off of the "giant bug" sci-fi films of the 50's and 60's, It Came From
the Desert takes place in the desert town of Lizard Breath, California, a
Community populated with the typical mixture of town folks mired in the
backwater of cultural development. As the story evolves, you will become
acquainted with characters like the sheriff, the garage mechanic, the hard
boiled newspaper reporter, and an eerie gypsy fortune teller. All these
people have one thing in common - they can panic with the best of them when
the creatures show up.
You, Dr. Greg Bradley, are a relative newcomer in town, a geologist who has
come to study the mineral content of meteorite fragments in the surrounding
desert. However, more than rock collections await in the desert as your
wildest nightmares become scientific realities - giant ants who must be
discovered and destroyed.
The story begins at your small ranch house. You are being assisted in your
studies by a local college student named Biff. You have also enlisted the
help of a local prospector in gathering of meteorite samples.
Recently back from a much needed vacation, you are anxious to survey the
remains of a large meteor that crashed into a remote section of the nearby
mountains the week before. The town folks are abuzz with speculation about
OBJECT OF THE GAME
Your goal is to stop the ants before they destroy the town. You accomplish
your mission by visiting locations, talking with people, obtaining
information, collecting physical evidence, and surviving direct
confrontations with the creatures while trying to develop a strategy for
the town's survival. Ultimately, you must destroy the queen ant and the
nest to bring rest to...
Life in Lizard Breath is like that of any dusty little desert town of the
fifties. The townsfolk rise early, labor hard until the sun sets, and
retire to bed early in the evening. Most places of business are closed
after dark, so you must conduct your business during normal working hours.
You are most likely to encounter townspeople at their workplaces, although
it is not unusual to run into folks running around town conduction other
matters of business. As in real life, you can interact with people by
direct conversation or by telephone. You are also free to travel anywhere
in town you wish.
Your life will be affected by the actions of others as the story builds.
Choose your allies carefully; it's not easy knowing who to trust.
You are susceptible to all mortal weaknesses, such as injury and the need
to sleep. Get plenty of rest each day, and always be on the alert for
The story begins on June 1, 1951. With only 15 days remaining before
disaster strikes, you must utilize every second available to prove the
existence of the creatures to the townspeople, locate their nest and
destroy the queen.
Since the story takes place in a time-based environment, the clock starts
ticking as soon as you begin the game. Approximately one minute of game
time passes for each second of real time. To keep from losing precious
time, plan each day's schedule carefully, making long trips only when
necessary. Avoid travelling aimlessly from one end of town to another.
The story uses a text-based character interface which allows you to think,
act and react to a situations as if you are the leading man in a motion
picture. The other characters in the story also act and react to their
surroundings, and each character has his or her own human dilemmas to
resolve as the plot thickens.
As you character reacts to the situations taking place, his thoughts are
displayed in a thought box. If a decision needs to be made, your available
choices appear on a menu box. To make a decision, use the joystick to
highlight the desired selection and press the button.
Sometimes one of your choices will flash on screen. A flashing choice is a
temporary situation that can be acted quickly. Examples of temporary
situations include: phone calls, people knocking on your door, etc.
Conversations takes place each time you encounter one of the game's
characters. Your thoughts are displayed in the thought box. The other
character's dialogue is displayed in a black conversation box at the
bottom of the screen. Click the button as you finish reading the text
displayed to move through conversations.
Select GO TO MAP from the menu to see a large overhead map of Lizard
Breath. All locations you can travel to are located on this map. You can
scroll the map horizontally and vertically with the joystick to locate the
place you wish to go. As you scan the map you see icon windows depicting
each locale and the amount of time it takes to travel there from your
current position. Once the desired location is highlighted, simply press
the button to travel there. The clock automatically skips forward to
reflect your travel time.
If you are in a location where a telephone is available, you can make phone
calls by selecting MAKE A CALL from the menu. After you select this
choice, a directory of phone numbers appears. Move the arrow using your
joystick to the desired number and press the button to select it. The
operator appears and tells you if she can connect your call. (Note: The
operator is also an excellent source of gossip!) If a person can be reached
at that number, his or her face replaces that of the operator in the upper
Everybody needs sleep - even you! In fact, you must sleep a minimum of 7
hours for each 24 hour period in the game to have full control of your
senses. To get some sleep, return to your home. Select the SLEEP option
from the menu. To choose the number of hours you wish to sleep, move the
joystick left or right until the desired number appears and press the
button. You may sleep up to 24 hours at a time; however, choosing to sleep
that much is unadvisable unless you intentionally want to advance time.
In the event you fail to get your required amount of sleep, the chances of
misfortune (falling asleep at the wheel, etc.) greatly increase.
Lizard Breath has become increasingly edgy ever since the meteor hit just
outside of town. Tempers flare more easily than usual, and paranoia runs
at a fever pitch. With all this tension in the air there is a great chance
you will encounter peril along the way. Luckily, there's a good hospital
in town. If you should lose consciousness due to injury, one of Lizard
Breath's Good Samaritans will drop you off at the local hospital.
Unfortunately, while you're lying on your back you're not getting any
closer to saving the town from monster-sized damnation. Which leads us to...
Your stay in this hospital depends on the extent of your injuries.
However, time is of the essence, and even minor wounds can put you out of
commission for at least a day. Nevertheless, there is a way out. If you
are stealthy and fleet of foot, you may be able to escape the hospital
unnoticed (or at least unscathed).
Your room is on the second floor of the hospital. To get out of bed, press
the button. Use the joystick to move your character throughout the
labyrinthine corridors of the hospital. Don't let anyone capture you - if
you are grabbed by the hospital personnel or have your exit from a room
blocked, you are strapped to your hospital bed and forced to accept
treatment (jello for lunch, jello for dinner) for the duration of your
stay. Avoid on-duty candystripers, doctors, and security personnel by
walking out of their view. Duck into rooms when you see hospital staff
approaching. If you've in a jam, hide under desks or operating tables by
walking up to the hiding place. If you enter a room with an unoccupied
bed, walk up to the bed and press the button. When the coast is clear,
press the button to get out of bed and continue your escape.
You may get to the ground floor by using either the elevator or the stairs.
To open the elevator, approach the doors and wait for the elevator bell to
ring. The elevator automatically drops you off on the first floor.
To use the stairs, simply walk down them (there is no wait...just a little
extra strain on the calf muscles).
The action gets more intense on the first floor, as more hospital
personnel learn of your escape plans and attempt to stop you. Look for the
main entrance - it's your only way out of this medical madhouse.
If you choose not to escape, but want to get out of the hospital, choose
ACCEPT TREATMENT from the menu and the game will advance to the appropriate
Wheelchairs allow you to move through the hospital corridors at a much
faster rate than by foot. Locate a wheelchair by searching the hospital
corridors during escape. There's bound to be one somewhere. To sit down
in the wheelchair, simply touch it. Press the fire button to resume
standing. Remember, you cannot go down the stairs while in the wheelchair,
your health insurance policy doesn't cover suicide attempts.
Beware of security personnel blocking exits to the hospital. You must use
quickness and a little finesse to edge your way past these surly security
CREATURE STOPPING - PART 1: COLLECTING EVIDENCE
To succeed in gaining support from the townspeople, the mayor, and the
national guard, you must collect evidence in order to establish the nature
of the creatures and their whereabouts. This information can be broken
down into Background Information/Sightings and Direct Evidence. With
enough information, you may be able to track down a creature part and get
Initially, the evidence you collect comes by second-hand accounts of
strange occurrences or unusual sightings. This information can be
classified in three ways:
1. Sightings. Gather information from townspeople's stories of contact
with the creatures.
2. Information on people with whom you come into contact. Learn the
reputations of those you meet. Discover who is trustworthy and who
3. Information concerning natural events, weather conditions, etc.
To convince the mayor into calling out the national guard, you must collect
all four samples of direct evidence, Samples include:
1. A creature's track(s); example Plaster Cast
2. A recording of creature sounds
3. Creature fluids
4. A creature part
If you are at a site where direct evidence is present, you will be prompted
to decide whether you wish to collect the evidence. If you respond YES you
automatically acquire that piece of evidence. After acquiring direct
evidence, take it to the University Lab for analysis. Analysis procedures
usually take one day, after which time the results can be received.
Analysis results can be used to convince the mayor of the necessity to bring
Some events you hear about are real - others are imagined or fabricated.
It is your job to sift through the evidence and decide which leads to
follow. Some sightings could be staged events by those with ulterior
motives. Other happenings may be coincidental or dead ends with logical
If the evidence you collect is conclusive, you will convice the mayor to
call a general alert. Based on your expertise in creature tracking (and
his fear for his life), the mayor will appoint you in charge of a local
task force designed to clear the community of the huger-crazed creatures.
Using the police station as your headquarters, you must plan how to use your
human resources (army, police, construction workers and townspeople) to
fend off the attacking insects. The actual locations where you will send
forces is depicted on a situation map you keep in the police station.
THE SITUATION MAP
Go to the police station and select SITUATION MAP from the menu (available
only during general alert). An overhead map appears which shows each
location in town. Ant icons appear at each location where the creatures
are attacking. A red "X" marks appears at each locations where the ants
have destroyed. A menu bar at the bottom of the screen displays your human
resources. Move across the map using the joystick until you see the window
for the desired location. Press the button down and move the joystick left
or right across the bottom menu to select which category of forces you wish
to utilize. Once on the desired icon, move the joystick up or down to
transfer troops to and from the location. Icons representing army troops,
policemen, construction workers and ordinary townsfolk appear at the
location on the map, and the number of units sent is displayed in the
location window. In order to commit tanks to a location you must assign at
least two units of troops to the site. To exit the situation map and
return to the police station, highlight the EXIT icon, release the button
and press it once.
If you choose to let your forces fight the ants without being present, the
computer will determine who wins the battle based on how may ants were
there and how many and what kind of forces you sent to the site. The
computer tallies your gains and losses at the end of each day and displays
the results the next day.
CREATURE STOPPING - Part 2: Confrontation!
Sooner or later you must meet the creatures face-to-face. In case of
surprise attack, you always carry a loaded hand gun. However, with
adequate preparation and support of the community, you may acquire
additional weaponry and military support to assist you in the enemy's
If you encounter a lone creature face-to-face, prove your prowess at
sharpshooting. You are equipped with a specially designed .45-caliber
USING YOUR SIDEARM - Move the joystick horizontally or vertically to aim
your trusty peacemaker, and press the button to fire.
1. Watch where the bullets strikes and adjust your aim accordingly.
2. Attack the creature where it is most vulnerable. Remember - all
monsters have an Achilles heel!
3. Learn to become a good marksman. Your ammo supply goes down with each
If you engage in battle and are successful at killing the first creature,
the scene cuts from point-of-view to an aerial map view of that location.
The map view presents the features of the location, including mountains,
building and vegetation. Various weapons may be available based on the
current state of community alert. Press and hold down the joystick button
to view your available resources for the battle. A resource menu appears
at the bottom of the screen.
THE OVERHEAD BATTLE RESOURCE MENU
A number of icons are represented on the resource menu, including hand
grenades, dynamite, tanks, and jets. Listed next to each icon is the
number of units of that resource available. For example: If the box to
the right of hand grenades show 10, you have 10 usable hand grenades.
To select an item, move the joystick left or right until the desired
selections is highlighted.
HAND GRENADES/DYNAMITE - To throw a hand grenade or stick of dynamite, face
the creature by moving the joystick and press the button. Time your throws
right and you can destroy more than one creature at a time.
TANKS - (available only during general alert) To enter a tank, move your
character next to the desired tank and touch it. Ounce you have entered
the tank, drive by pushing the joystick in the desired direction. Press
the button to fire. Your shots will go in the direction your turret is
facing. Rotate the turret by pressing the button down and push the
joystick forward or back. Tanks have unlimited firepower, and are
functional until they are either destroyed or the tank get overrun. Tanks
not under your control will autofire at the creatures. Be careful not to
run into a tank's field of fire. Shell shock is a sure way to win a trip
to the hospital.
Turret Fire Turret
Left <-----Button-----> Right
JETS - (available only during general alert) When the jet icon is
selected, a crosshair cursor will appear at the left side of the screen.
Use the joystick to move the cursor around the edge of the screen to
position the jets' flight pattern. Jets will fly a straight pattern from
the point you place the cursor to the opposite side of the screen.
However, if you place the cursor in an upper or lower corner, the jets will
fly a diagonal pattern from that corner to the corner opposite side of the
screen. When the jets appear onscreen, press the button to drop bombs.
You have unlimited firepower as long as the jets remain on screen. Since
you have a limited number of strafing runs allowed to you jet squadron (as
listed in the window next to the jet icon), you will want to use this
resource only extreme circumstances. Be careful when calling an airstrike
that you are not in the jets line of fire - it's hard to fight a war from
your hospital bed.
FLIGHT GAME (The Airborne Exterminator)
It may be necessary to get a bird's eye view of the surrounding countryside
in order to locate the creatures and their center of activity. To track
the creatures by plane, select TAKE A FLIGHT when offered at Hilbers
Airfield. An overhead aerial map view appears. Move your character (the
little guy with arms) into the plane.
TAKE OFF - Push forward on the stick until the plane start to move. Use
the joystick to maneuver your aircraft, being careful to stay on the
runway. Accelerate down the runway by pushing forward on the joystick and
your aircraft will lift off when sufficient speed has been reached.
FLYING - Once you are airborne, move the joystick forward to increase
altitude and accelerate. Pull back on the joystick to lower altitude and
FUEL GAGE - A bar gauge on screen displays your fuel consumption. Although
you fly faster at higher altitudes, you consumer fuel at a faster rate as
well. Monitor you aircraft's fuel usage and fly back to the airport when
fuel runs low. If you stay airborn too long and cannot make it back to the
airport on remaining fuel, you must try to crash land the plane elsewhere.
LANDING - Before landing, decrease the altitude of your aircraft by pulling
back on the joystick. Look for a smooth landing surface (preferably the
airport runway) and ease the plane down gently by slowly pulling back on
the joystick until the aircraft touches down. Once the plane has come to a
complete stop, push the button to climb out. Failure to safely land the
plane (crash! bang!) can get you an all-expense paid trip (courtesy of your
insurance company) to the local hospital or a long walk back to town.
CHEMICAL SPRAY - There is a strong possibility of sighting the deadly
creatures from the air. Fortunately, your plane has a limited supply of a
lethal chemical spray which may be used as a weapon against certain giant
creatures (namely, the ones in this game!). Press the button while flying
over the targeted creature to release a short burst of poisonous gas. Be
frugal with your use of the spray, however, for the chemical tanks are
CREATURE STOPPING - PART 3: ELIMINATION!
To stop the creatures from overtaking the city, you must locate and destroy
the queen ant, who is responsible for the reproducing these crawling
creatures of doom. Using information you have gathered on the whereabouts
of the creatures nest, find its hidden entrance and prepare to engage in a
battle-to-the-death with the ferocious beasts below.
INTO THE MONSTERS LAIR (The Nest Game)
Once you have located the nest opening, you may proceed down into its murky
depths. Equipped with a single load of timed explosives, a rope, and a
flame thrower, you must defend yourself against giant guardian ants as you
explore the netherdepths of the nest. Proceed carefully, as the nest is a
labyrinth of twists and turns. If you lose your way, you will become ant
food, and nobody will hear your screams as they echo through the deep and
deadly tunnels far below the earth's surface.
The queen ant rests in the deepest level of the underground nest. Once you
have sighted the queen in her chamber, the timed explosives are
automatically set and the countdown begins. Time is of the essence, and
you must quickly escape the nest once the timer on the bomb starts ticking.
If you fail to find the exit from the queen ant's level before the bomb
explodes, you get to see fireworks as your body becomes a cascade of
colorful flying parts (Yuck!). Unfortunately, they do not reassemble body
parts at the hospital, so if the nest blows up while you're inside you're
history. Game Over.
THE LAST DAY
If you haven't killed the queen ant before June 15, you must defend Main
Street from an all-out ant attack. If you choose not to defend the town,
the ants will destroy it and the game is over. If you succeed in
destroying the first wave of ants it buys you more time to try and reach
the nest and exterminate the queen. You must hurry, for eventually another
wave of ants will attack Main Street. If you have not killed the queen by
midnight on June 15, the game is over.
TROUBLE IN TOWN
The creatures are just part of the chaos in this crazy desert town. More
trouble than you can shake a stick at awaits at every turn, and each new
day promises added danger.
FIREFIGHTING (or "How Not to Get a Permanent, Deep, Dark Tan")
Sometimes the desert heat gets out of control. In case of fire, do not
call 911 - Lizard Breath doesn't have a fire department. To cool things
down, use your all-purpose fire extinguisher - excellent for quenching
overcooked pot roasts, cooling overworked feet and drowning small apartment
fires. Move the joystick to position the nozzle horizontally and
vertically over the flames. Press the fire button to send a stream of
water shooting at the rising flames. Attack the largest fires first,
working your way down to smaller fires as time permits. If the fire gets
out of control, you pass out (from smoke inhalation) and must recuperate at
the local hospital.
Extinguish one fire at a time. Rather than trying to spray the entire
room, concentrate on isolated areas, completely quenching the fire in one
area before moving on to the next.
If you spray an area and see no reduction in the flames, adjust your spray
by moving the joystick and try again. If you are on target, you should see
positive results with each spray of the fire extinguisher.
KNIFE FIGHT (The Way of the Old West - and small forgotten desert towns)
Some of the characters you encounter are easily angered, and may resort to
violence with little or no provocation. In case of such incidents, you
should know how to put your multi-purpose pocket knife to use.
Duck Fire Duck
Left <--- Button ---> Right
Fake <--- Button ---> Swipe
THE GAME OF CHICKEN (Hellraising on the Highway)
If you get caught in the right place at the wrong time, you may be provoked
into a game of "Chicken" by the Hellcats, a trio of psychopathic roughnecks
who rule the local roads. A modern descendant of the joust (made famous in
medieval tournaments), "Chicken" pits two cars in a classic confrontation
of speed and courage. At a given signal, the cars (strategically placed on
opposite ends of a stretch of highway) accelerate towards each other at top
speed until one car "chickens out" (thus the name Chicken) and leaves the
DRIVERS - Push the joystick forward to accelerate. Move the joystick left
or right to steer. Once you start forward, there's no slowing down or
CHICKENS - You may press the button and steer right or left to maneuver
your truck off the road if you sense the Hellcats aren't turning off.
You'll save yourself a fortune in body repair (both yours and the truck's),
but your vehicle will still be undriveable due to the ditches and rocks
off-road (it's not a dune buggy!). It's a long walk to town, but it's
better than being dragged to town in a body bag.
BRAVE IDIOTS - If neither you nor your opponent leaves the road, you're in
for one heck of a headache. The gut wrenching sound of metal on metal will
fill the desert canyon as bodies of steel collide. Needless to say,
meeting your opponents in this fashion ensures you a long stay in the
There is a way to scare the Hellcats off of the road. If you successfully
do so, you will be able to continue to your original destination.