Scorched Earth manual
- Scorched Earth
Scorched Earth 1.5
- The Mother of All Games -
Copyright (c) 1991-1995 Wendell Hicken
Scorched Earth page 2
Table of Contents
Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Scorch Quick Start . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4
Choosing Players . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
Human-Controlled Players . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
Computer-Controlled Players . . . . . . . . . . 7
Tank Icon Selection . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
Playing the Game . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
Tank Control Panel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
Controls available: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
Moving your Tank . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
Inventory Panel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
Buying Equipment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18
Selling Items . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20
Equipment List . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
Available Weapons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
Standard Weapons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24
Earth Destroying Weapons . . . . . . . . . . . . 26
Earth Producing Weapons . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
Energy Weapons . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27
Available Accessories . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28
Guidance Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29
Defense Systems . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31
Miscellaneous Extras . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32
System Menu . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33
Reassigning Players . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
Reassigning Teams . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
Saved Games . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
Customizing Scorch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36
Brief Summary of On-screen Controls . . . . . . 37
Main Menu . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38
Sound Menu . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39
Hardware Menu . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40
Economics Menu . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42
Physics Menu . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44
Landscape Menu . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
Play Options Menu . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47
Changing the Talking Tanks . . . . . . . . . . . 48
Weapons Menu . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49
Archaic Options . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50
Simultaneous Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51
Synchronous Mode . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52
Being a Team Player . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52
Registering Scorch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53
Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55
Scorched Earth page 3
Scorched Earth is a simple, yet exciting artillery combat game, based on an
auspicous history of artillery games. Most of the options are very
intuitive, and you can begin playing with only a little bit of information.
Then, when you are interested, you can poke in the dimmer recesses of the
manual for more information and options (or just ignore it altogether!)
If you want to get started right away (and don't we all?), skip to the next
section for a Quick Start. Note that Scorched Earth uses the full 256
colors available on a VGA monitor, and will not run on anything less (i.e.
Hercules, MDA, CGA, EGA, PGA, etc.) If you don't have a VGA, you'll have
to find a friend who does.
The following is a list of files that are distributed/created by Scorch. If
you are missing any of these files (except SCORCH.MKT), then you have an
incomplete copy of Scorch!
FIX.BAT Utility to remove bad .cfg files
ORDER.FRM Registration form
README Last minutes changes and updates
SCORCH.CFG Scorched Earth Configuration File
SCORCH.DOC Scorched Earth Documentation
SCORCH.EXE Scorched Earth, The Game
SCORCH.ICO Scorched Earth Icon for Microsoft Windows
SCORCH.MKT Market Price Database (automatically created)
SCORCH.PIF "Program Information File" for starting
Scorched Earth from Microsoft Windows 3.1
TALKXX.CFG Comment Files used for Talking Tanks
*.MTN Scanned mountain ranges
Scorched Earth page 4
Scorch Quick Start
So, you want to play Scorched Earth...OK, here's whatcha gotta do:
Start Scorched Earth by copying everything into a subdirectory of your
harddisk, like c:\games\scorch, or by putting it all on a floppy disk. Now
type SCORCH (and then hit for all you novices. :-) )
You are now looking at a Shareware message. Take the time to read it and
let it bother your conscience just a little bit. Don't worry, there's
nothing subliminal in the message. (Trust me!) Hit any key, and you will be
looking at the opening screen. For the first game, we'd like to make a
couple of changes to Scorched Earth's normal default settings. Here's how
ya do it:
With the mouse, click on Sound, or press O. Then press F for Flight Sound
2 times. (or click twice) so that it says POS. If you go past it, just
click a couple extra times, till it comes back. Now press ESC, or click
anywhere outside the dialog box.
Now click on Physics, or press Y. Then press W 2 or 3 times till it says
Random. Now press ESC, or click anywhere outside the dialog box.
Now click on Play Options, or press T. Then press T again (or click on
Talking Tanks) until there is a check mark in the box. This means ON.
Now click on Economics, or press E. Then press C (or click on Computers
Buy) to turn this option off. This will give you a little advantage while
you're learning. Now press ESC, or click anywhere outside the dialog box.
If you have a slow system, you might want to go to the hardware menu and
set the firing delay to a smaller number. The best thing is to play it
once, and see how fast it is, then adjust it to suit your system. If the
system seems to be going too slow, just decrease this number.
If you want, save these defaults by selecting "Save Changes". You can
always retype them later, or get rid or them later, at your discretion.
Now, click on Start, or press S, and start the game.
The screen will turn red (every player has his or her own color). The
computer will display a window which says "Player 1". Type your name and
press ENTER. For now, ignore the tank icons across the bottom. Click on
the Done button or press 'D'. (A second ENTER will also work here).
Next the screen will turn green, and display a new window. If you have a
friend, type in his or her name like you did for yourself. Otherwise,
you'll want to select a computer foe. To do this, click on the picture of
a computer in the lower left, or press TAB (you might need to press ESCAPE
first, to let the computer know you won't be typing in a name). The screen
will change to list the different types of Computers available. The
opponent types are all explained later in this manual. For now, choose
Moron by pressing M or clicking on the word "Moron.' That should give you
a chance to learn the ropes. Then press the Done button, or ENTER. (The
computer will choose its own name.)
Scorched Earth page 5
Scorch Quick Start cont...
Now the computer will generate a random Scorched Earth background. A player
will be chosen at random to go first, and then play will proceed from left
to right. If the computer went first, you have already been fired upon.
To fire, select fire-power, by using the up and down arrows, or putting the
mouse over it (at the top left of screen) and pressing the left or right
button to increase or decrease power. Do the same with angle, using the
left and right arrows, or putting the cursor on it and using the mouse
buttons. Now press space bar, or both mouse buttons at once! Boom!
That's basically how it goes. You can keep shooting till you get the other
tank(s). If you're having trouble, start over, and set the Trace option to
ON, so that all your missiles leave a colored track. The screen will get
messy, but it's much easier to figure out where you shot.
After you kill a tank, you have the option to buy weapons, based on how
much money you made. Money you don't spend will be saved until later. Try
buying a Baby Nuke. Then, before you fire the next time, press TAB, or
select your weapon by clicking the left or right mouse button on the top
right corner of the screen. Sit back and watch the fun. The tank control
panel is activated by pressing T or left-clicking on a player's name. Here
you can work the guidance and defense systems.
At any time, hit Alt-S or F1 for the system menu, which will let you exit
the game, switch players, or kill everyone! Most of all, just experiment,
and ... have fun!
Scorched Earth page 6
Once you have chosen START from the main menu, you will be allowed to
choose settings unique to each player. All of these choices can be changed
while playing the game by using the system menu (See Using the System
Menu). The following procedure will repeat for each player in the game:
1) The background will change to several shades of a particular color. This
color will represent the player being configured, and may not be changed.
2) The Tank Initialization Panel will appear. This identifies the current
tank by number, and gives access to all the settings you can control. The
contents of the Tank Initialization Panel vary depending on what kind of
player you are choosing: Computer-controlled, or human-controlled. To
switch between the types of players, press the TAB key or select the
appropriate icon. The various choices are described below. When you are
satisfied with your choices, press "Done" or ENTER.
That's all there is to it. If you are starting with initial cash, then
each player will have a chance to buy things (see Buying Equipment).
Otherwise, you will proceed directly to the game (see Playing the Game).
For human controlled players, you must at least enter your name. You do
this by typing into the box labelled "Name" at the top of the
initialization panel. If there is not a blinking vertical line (a
"caret"), you will need to press 'N' first to select this field. After you
have entered your name, press ENTER.
If you have selected simultaneous mode you must decide which keys the
players will use to control their tank, as every player will use the
keyboard simultaneously (Computer players don't need keys, so this
selection applies only to non-computer players). You must choose six keys,
for six different actions, as shown on the initialization panel by icons.
The icons, in order, stand for:
clockwise rotation of the turret
counter-clockwise rotation of the turret
increasing firing power
decreasing firing power
the fire button
a button to change weapons
Simply press the key you want, one for each box. Be careful to make sure
that no key is used for more than one thing (if you don't, you will hear a
beep, and must enter a new key). For more information, see Simultaneous Mode.
Scorched Earth page 7
If you chose to play the Computer, you will be prompted for information on
how the computer should play the tank. Choices and their meanings are
listed below. In any case, the computer will choose a name for its player
which will not conflict with any name used by a human (or otherwise) player.
Available Computer Opponents
Category Methods of Operation
Moron Well, you can't get much stupider than
this. Morons just pick an angle and
power, and shoot. Definitely for
Shooter Shooters can be significantly deadlier
than Morons, but only if they have a
straight line of fire.
Poolshark Poolsharks act like Shooters unless you
are using rebounding walls. Then they
try to rebound shots off of the walls
and ceilings to shoot you.
Tosser Tossers start out like Morons, but
they'll refine their aim to get closer
and closer, until they hit. If their
initial shot isn't too close, you have
some time to kill them.
Chooser Choosers have all the above methods
available to them, and decide which one
will be most effective.
Spoiler Spoilers are decidedly dangerous.
Taking into account the wind factor and
gravity, they will get a perfect shot
almost every time, assuming nothing is
in the way. Luckily, they aren't able
to compensate for viscous air.
Cyborg Cyborgs use methods similar to the
Spoilers, but are much nastier about
choosing targets. They will tend to
attack tanks who are weakened, winning,
or have attacked them in the past.
Unknown If you choose this option, one of the
above will be chosen randomly to control
the tank, but you will not be notified
of what the selection was!
Scorched Earth page 8
Tank Icon Selection
Whether you are choosing a human or a computer player, you will need to
select an icon, or graphical image, that will represent the tank. For the
most part, this is just a matter of taste.
If you choose an icon that doesn't have wheels or treads, you are
selecting a fixed emplacement rather than a tank, and that player will not
be able to buy (or use) fuel. Thus, they will be immobile for the duration
of each round (except for falling, of course!).
One of the icons may only be selected for Computer players. This icon is
the largest one to the right, and will appear grayed while you are choosing
human players (unless youre lucky enough to have the registered version!).
The icon represents the deadly "Triple-turreted tank", which allows the
tank to fire three shots at a time if it is using Missiles or Baby
Missiles. This gives particularly good players a run for their money!
Scorched Earth page 9
Playing the Game
When the game starts, you will see a background drawn, with tanks scattered
more or less evenly across the landscape. Most of the action is controlled
from the thin horizontal control bar across the top, but there are a few
extra options which use other parts of the screen. The top bar might be
arranged like this:
[Power: 345 Angle: 35 Sprig o 3 Dirt Clod]
Power is the amount of power you wish to fire your weapon with. It may be
anywhere between zero and the maximum available power for your tank (1000
if you're at full strength) Your current maximum may be found on the Tank
Control Panel, which you access by pressing 't' (explained in just a
moment), or will be listed on the next line if you have enable the Status Bar.
Angle is the angle at which you will be firing. It will always be between
0 and 90. You must look at you tank to know which direction you will be
firing. 0 is horizontally level, and 90 degrees is straight up.
Sprig is the current players name.
Dirt Clod is the currently selected weapon. On the far right, there will
always be an icon, a weapon name, and a number indicating how many of that
weapon you have left. This number will always be greater than zero, as you
can't select a weapon you don't own.
In the upper right corner of the sky, there will be the word Wind written
in a light blue, with either an arrow pointing left or right, and a number.
This represents the speed and direction of the wind, which will affect your
shot. You can control the wind somewhat before you start the game by
changing options on the Weather menu (see Main Menu). If there is no wind,
the words No Wind will be written there.
If you have enabled the Status Bar (from the Play Options menu), there will
be a second line of information. (Beginners should probably skip this
section on first reading. Go to section title "Controls Available." If,
on the other hand, you are a compulsive reader, feel free to continue... no
Scorched Earth page 10
[Max: 1000 0 [batt] 0 [para] 0 [shlds] 0% 0 [guid] 0 [trig] 0 [fuel]
The status bar takes some getting used to, but is a fast way to control
your tank. The leftmost entry shows your current maximum firing power.
This will be 10 times your tank's remaining power. If this number reaches
zero, you are dead.
The first icon is a battery, and the number to the left is how many
batteries you have in stock. If your energy is not at full, the icon of
the battery will be black, indicating you can use batteries to recharge
your power. If you have no batteries, or no need to use them, this icon
will be grayed.
The second icon is a parachute. This lets you toggle the current state of
your parachutes, if you own any. For example, if you have 5 parachutes
which are in the "passive" state, the 5 will be dark and the parachute icon
will be gray. If the parachutes are "deployed," then the parachute will
also be dark. If you have no parachutes, both the number and the icon will
be gray. (Parachutes are fully further on!)
Next is the shield control. If the shield icon is dark, that mean the icon
showing represents whatever shields are currently active. The percentage
indicates how much of the active shield remains, while the number to the
left of the shield indicates how many of that type of shield you have in
inventory. When you energize your shields, the shield represented by the
icon will be activated, decrementing the count on the left by one, and
increasing the percentage to one-hundred. The icon of a small person
indicates "no shields." When shields are enabled, the "no shields" icon
will be a downward-pointing arrow. You can use this icon can be used to
turn off your shields entirely.
Next are guidance systems. If there is a guidance system icon displayed,
that guidance system will be used when you fire (unless it does not apply,
explained later). The small icon of a person means "No guidance, I can hit
that tank by myself!" The number to the left indicates how many of the
selected guidance system you currently own.
Continuing across the status bar, you will find a contact trigger icon, The
trigger icon will be gray if triggers are not active, and dark otherwise.
The number indicates how many triggers you currently own.
Finally, there is a fuel icon (but not in 320x200 mode... no space!). The
fuel icon will be dark if you have any fuel at all, in which case clicking
on this icon will send you directly to the Tank Movement Panel, so you can
move your tank from side to side.
Scorched Earth page 11
F1 or Alt-S (which pops-up the System Menu) is available at any time. In
addition, there are several controls you can use at this point in the game
(facing the playing field with no other controls).
UP ARROW: Increase the power with which you want to fire.
This can be done with the mouse by clicking on the word
Power with the right mouse button. As long as you hold the
key or button, the number will continue to increase (up to
PAGE UP: Rapidly increase the power with which you want to
fire. This is similar to using the UP ARROW, except the
numbers will change much faster.
DOWN ARROW: Decrease the power with which you want to fire.
This can be done with the mouse by clicking on the word
Power with the left mouse button.
PAGE DOWN: Rapidly decrease the power with which you want
to fire. This is similar to using the DOWN ARROW, except
the numbers will change much faster.
LEFT ARROW: Rotate your turret counter-clockwise. This can
be done with the mouse by clicking on the word Angle with
the left mouse button.
SHIFT: If you hold down the SHIFT key while using any of
the arrow keys, the power/angle will increase/decrease more
slowly. This is useful for making small adjustments to your
current power and angle.
ALT: If you hold down the ALT key while using any of the
arrow keys, the power/angle will increase/decrease by only
one for each press of the arrow key. This is useful for
making very fine adjustments to your current power and angle.
TAB: Change weapons. This can be done with the mouse by
clicking on the weapon name with the right mouse button.
When you change weapons, each weapon you own appears in
turn. To change weapons in the other direction of the
weapons list, use SHIFT-TAB, or click on the weapon name
with the left mouse button.
SPACEBAR or ENTER:Fire your currently selected weapon.
This can be done with the mouse by clicking both buttons
simultaneously while positioned over the playing area. You
will then see your shot on screen, along with any effects,
and the next player will have a turn.
If you are using guidance systems, you may need to provide
additional information after firing your missile, so it
knows what destination it is headed for. See Guidance Systems.
Scorched Earth page 12
Controls available: cont...
t: This selects the Tank Control Panel. This may be done
with the mouse by clicking on the player name with the left
mouse button. For more information about this panel, see
the Tank Control Panel below.
i: This brings up an icon inventory of all the items you
have in stock. You can do this with the mouse by clicking
on your name with the right button. If you have a mouse,
you can click on any weapon icon, and that will become the
currently selected weapon. There is no keyboard equivalent
to this shortcut. To exit from this panel, click anywhere
outside the inventory box, or press the ESCAPE key.
k: Display a box which reads "No kibitzing, please." This
is a not so subtle clue to tell people to shut up when you
are trying to aim! Press any button or key to remove the box.
r: Retreat from the playing field. There is no way to do
this with the mouse. You will gain no points for this
action, but may prevent an enemy from getting points for
killing you. This is sometimes a wise action if you know
you are going to die. If you kill yourself, you will
actually lose cash! After you press 'r', you will be asked
if you really want to retreat before this action takes
effect. You will escape in an emergency helicopter (model
G.N.A.T.), and your tank will blow up behind you.
u: Display an update of the game status, i.e. what state are
the walls in, and how many rounds are left. Click anywhere
outside the box, or press any key to get out.
0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9:Display information about the tank
which corresponds to the number. The leftmost tank will be
numbered one, the next numbered two, and so on. If there
are ten tanks, the last one will be numbered 10, represented
here by a 0. Note that when tanks die, their representative
order will change. This information can be gotten more
easily by clicking on the tank you are interested in with
the left button. To get rid of the information box, click
anywhere outside it or press ESCAPE.
If you have the Status Bar enabled, another set of keys will be active
which allow you to control the options listed there. The options
correspond to those found on the Tank Control Panel, and are explained in
more detail there. There is currently no way to set the parachute safety
threshold from the Status Bar.
Scorched Earth page 13
Controls available: cont...
b: Activate one battery. This increases your power by 10
units. You can do this with the mouse by clicking on the
battery icon on the status bar.
p: Toggle the state of your parachutes. Deployed parachutes
will become passive, and passive parachutes will deploy.
You can do this with the mouse by clicking on the parachute
icon on the status bar.
s: Select shield type. This selects the current shield
type. This is useful for changing your shields or
recharging them. You must select a shield type before
energizing a shield. Note that the small stick figure
indicates no shields, and can be used to deactivate shields.
You control this option with the mouse by clicking on the
shield icon on the status bar.
e: Engage current shield type. This engages the current
shield type, or deactivates the current shield if you have
selected "nothing" as your current shield. This option will
not work if you try to charge a fully charged shield of the
same type, but will work to switch shield types. You can do
this with the mouse by clicking on the % energized number to
the right of the shield icon on the status bar.
g: Select guidance system. This selects your current
guidance system. The stick figure indicates no guidance
system. You can do this with the mouse by clicking on the
guidance icon on the status bar.
f: Use fuel. This enables you to move your tank back and
forth, as described in the section Moving Your Tank. You
can enable this with the mouse by clicking on the fuel
canister icon on the status bar.
-: Enable/disable contact triggers. This option is not
available in 320x200 mode. This controls whether your shot
will tunnel or not. You can do this with the mouse by
clicking on the contact trigger icon to the far right of the
status bar. Note that the equivalent key from the Tank
Control Panel is 't'.
Scorched Earth page 14
Tank Control Panel
When the Tank Control Panel is displayed, the above commands are disabled
and replaced by a new set of commands. For more information on some of the
items described here, see the extensive descriptions in the Equipment List.
Most of the hotkeys will be highlighted. If any entry is gray, that means
that the option is not currently available (for example, you may not
control parachutes unless you have at least 1 parachute in your inventory).
If you have the status bar enabled, you will be able to access most of
these options without using the Tank Control Panel. Some people find the
Tank Control Panel easier, while others prefer the status bar. In either
case, the actions performed are identical.
b: Discharge one battery in order to increase your remaining
power. If your remaining power is 100 (the maximum), or you
have no batteries, then you cannot use this option. Each
battery will increase your power by ten, unless doing so
would give you more than 100 power. In this case your
power will simply be put to 100. This can be done with the
mouse by clicking on the word Batteries.
p: Change the active state of parachutes. Parachutes may
either be passive, or deployed. Each time you press p, the
state will change back and forth. This may be done with the
mouse by clicking on the word Parachute. Note that if you
have no parachutes, you may not change the state of them.
For more information on what the state of a parachute means,
consult the Equipment List.
v: Change the safety threshold of the parachute. This may
be done with the mouse by clicking on the tiny dial to the
right of the word Parachutes. When you select this, the
number to the right of the dial will disappear, and a large
box will appear. You may type any number between 1 and 100,
then press enter to register your change. If you decide not
to change the value, you can press ESCAPE. This number can
only be entered from the keyboard. For more information on
what the safety threshold is, see the Equipment List under
Scorched Earth page 15
Controls available: cont...
e: This option will engage the currently selected shield.
This can be done with the mouse by clicking on the words
Energy Left, or by clicking on the power bar to the right.
The currently selected shield is the one pointed to by the
slide bar directly underneath the words Energy Left. If any
shields are engaged, the percentage of protection remaining
will be indicated by how much of the power bar is lit.
Engage shields will remove whatever shields were present, if
any, and put the currently selected shields to full. If the
currently selected shields are None, then energizing them
will put your shields down all the way. If you put down
your shields, or energize a shield when a shield was already
present, there is no way to regain that shield. For more
on shields, see the Equipment List under Shields and
s: This option lets you change the currently selected
shield. This has no effect on the game unless you energize
the shield, as described on the command above. You may do
this with the mouse by clicking on the slide bar. Note that
each type of shield will say how many of that type you have
left. If you have a shield currently in place, the name of
the shield will be highlighted here. The currently selected
shield need not be the same as the currently energized
shield. For more on shields, see the Equipment List under
Shields, and the paragraph above on Energizing Shields.
t: This lets you use triggers. You may do this with the
mouse by clicking on the box next to the word Triggers. You
may only do this if you have more than zero triggers. If
you select triggers, your weapon will be equipped with a
trigger when you fire. No triggers will actually be used
until you fire, so until that point you may reselect
Triggers to turn them off. For more information on
triggers, consult the Equipment List.
g: This lets you choose a weapons guidance system. You do
this with the mouse by clicking on the slide bar beneath the
word Guidance. When you fire a weapon, the guidance system
which you have chosen, if any, will take charge and do
whatever it is that it does. No guidance system will
actually be used until you fire. After firing, the guidance
system will be set back to None, so you don't accidentally
waste some expensive electronics. For more info on Guidance
Systems, consult the Equipment List.
f: This lets you move your tank, assuming that you have some
amount of fuel which is not zero. You can do this with the
mouse by clicking on the words Fuel Remaining. For
information on how to move your tank, see Moving your Tank.
Scorched Earth page 16
Moving your Tank
When you choose f from the Tank Control Panel, that panel will disappear,
to be replaced by the Moving Control Panel. The Moving Control Panel has
two arrows, one pointing left, and one pointing right, and a button between
them which says how much fuel you have left. To move in a direction, click
on the arrow in that direction, or press the LEFT ARROW or RIGHT ARROW
keys. Moving one pixel requires one unit of fuel, unless you are going
uphill, in which case it depends on how steep the hill is.
If a hill is too steep, you will be unable to climb it. If you really want
to go that direction, you'll have to blow the hill up! If a hill which you
are descending becomes too steep, your tank will slip and fall, possibly
taking severe damage. If this happens, control will return to the main
area of the game. If you want to move further, you'll have to reselect f
from the Tank Control Panel.
When you have no fuel left, you can move no farther. In any case, when you
decide you have finished moving, you may press ESCAPE, or click on the
button which indicates how much fuel you have left. This will return you
to the main part of the game, not the Tank Control Panel.
LEFT ARROW: Move your tank left one pixel. Naturally, you
can only do this if you have fuel. This is done with the
mouse by clicking on the left arrow of the Moving Control
RIGHT ARROW: Move your tank right one pixel. Naturally, you
can only do this if you have fuel. This is done with the
mouse by clicking on the right arrow of the Moving Control
ESCAPE: Finish moving your tank. This is done with the
mouse by clicking on the "Fuel Left" indicator.
Scorched Earth page 17
When you press 'i' during your turn, or right-click on your name, the
Inventory Panel will pop-up. This panel displays an icon for each type of
item you currently own. This panel gives you short-cut access to many of
the features of Scorch. When you are done looking at/using the Inventory
Panel, press ESCAPE or click outside the panel. Beginners should probably
skip the rest of this section on their first reading.
When you select an icon, you will either hear a beep, or the icon will
"flash." If the icon flashes, that means it has taken the "obvious"
action. The "obvious" actions are described briefly below:
Weapons will be selected, so that you don't have to TAB through a list to
get to them. This is often a convenient way of choosing a weapon.
Shields will be energized. Unlike other methods of energizing a shield,
this method both chooses and energizes the shield, so one click gets you
the whole shooting match.
Parachutes and triggers will be toggled from an "active" state to a
Guidance systems will be selected. Note that there is no way to de-select
a guidance system from the Inventory Panel... you will need to use the Tank
Control Panel or the status bar.
Batteries will be discharged to recharge your energy.
Clicking on the fuel icon will send you directly to the Moving Control Panel.
Generally speaking, the Inventory Panel shortcuts become easier and more
convenient the more you use them, but if you don't like them, feel free to
ignore them. As an aside, remember that the Inventory Panel serves a
completely different purpose when selected from the Buying Menu... at that
point, you click on an item to see how much the computer will buy it back
for. This is described further in another section.
Scorched Earth page 18
Between rounds, players who have extra cash will be given the opportunity
to buy more equipment. For a list of available equipment, see the
Equipment List. This section explains the commands available for selecting
and purchasing equipment.
Along the left hand side of the buying screen, there is a large column of
rectangles, each of which displays an icon, a name of an item that can be
bought, and the cost per bundle of that item. Some items can be bought
singly, while others may only be bought in groups of three, five, or
another number. To buy an item, click on the name representing that item.
You will see the count increase, and your money decrease. When you have no
money left, you must select Done, or press ESCAPE, so that the game may
Note that you can never have more than ninety nine of any item. If you try
to buy more than ninety nine of a particular item, you will only pay for
the fraction that you can buy, but they will be marked up. That sentence
is confusing enough to warrant an example: Suppose you have 94 Death
Widgets that cost $10,000/10. Because of the ninety nine limit, you can
only have five more (until you use some, of course.) The computer will
only sell you 5 Death Widgets, but instead of $5,000/5, you must pay
$6,000/5, because the bundle size changed. The markup is about 20%.
Note also that each player has an unlimited supply of Baby Missiles.
They're listed on the menu so that you don't forget them, but you will
always have 99.
PAGE DOWN: Go to the next screen, if any, of the current
group of items. This is equivalent to clicking on the down
arrow. If the down arrow is grayed, this will do nothing.
Note that the list wraps around, i.e., if you are on page 2
of 2, then pressing page down will put you back on page 1.
PAGE UP: Go to the previous screen, if any, of the current
group of items. This is equivalent to clicking on the up
arrow. If the up arrow is grayed, this will do nothing.
Note that the list wraps around, i.e., if you are on page 1
of 2, then pressing page up will put you on page 2.
i: This will display an icon inventory of what items you
currently have it stock. You can do this with the mouse by
clicking on the "Inventory" button. This inventory will
tell you how many you have of each item that you own. To
get rid of the inventory and return to buying things, click
anywhere outside the box, or press ESCAPE. If you click on
any item of your inventory except Baby Missiles, you will
have a chance to sell that item, as explained below.
Scorched Earth page 19
Buying Equipment cont...
u: This will display an update of the game status. You can
get this with the mouse by pressing the "Update" button. A
small, pop-up window will describe how many rounds are left,
and how much interest you have earned since the start of the
game. To get rid of the update panel, click anywhere
outside the panel, or press ESCAPE.
UP ARROW: This will move the triangular marker for the
currently selected item up one. This wraps around, i.e., if
you are at the top of the list, it will put you at the
bottom. It will not, however, change between pages of a
list. You cannot move the marker in this fashion with the
DOWN ARROW: This will move the triangular marker for the
currently selected item down one. This wraps around, i.e.,
if you are at the bottom of the list, it will put you at the
top. It will not, however, change between pages of a list.
You cannot move the marker in this fashion with the mouse.
HOME: This will move the triangular marker to the top of the
list. It will not change pages.
END: This will move the triangular marker to the bottom of
the list. It will not change pages.
TAB: This can be used to select different groups of items to
look at. This is equivalent to clicking on the slide bar.
The gun icon represents the Weapons group, and the box icon
represents the Miscellaneous group. Note that the name of
the current group is displayed at the top of the item list.
SPACE BAR: This will purchase one bundle of the item
pointed to by the triangular marker. This can be done with
the mouse just by clicking on the item you want to buy (the
marker will jump there). Note that you can buy anything you
can see, because items that are too expensive never appear
until you can afford them. If making this purchase
decreases your free cash to the point where you can't afford
something, that item will disappear from the list of items.
(It will return when you can afford it again).
ESCAPE: This finishes the buying menu. Do this when you
have finished buying items. This will let the next player
buy items, or if everyone is finished, it will begin the
next round. You can do this with the mouse by clicking on
the DONE button.
Scorched Earth page 20
When you select an icon from your inventory while on the buying screen, you
will be given a chance to sell that item back. Another panel will appear
that names the item and how many you have in stock. There will be a
counter (as used in the configuration menus) that lets you choose how many
you want to sell by pressing 'q' (for "Quantity" to sell), or left and
right clicking to decrease and increase the amount. At each amount the
computer will make you an offer. The price per item may vary depending on
how many you are willing to sell.
After you have reached a decision, press 'a' to accept the computer's
offer, or 'r' to reject it (or simply press the appropriate button). If
you accept the offer, your account will be credited, and the number in your
inventory will be decremented. You may spend the money immediately, if you
wish, or keep it in the bank to earn interest. You may go back and forth
to the Selling Panel as often as you wish, but the computer will not change
its offer until the next round (and possibly not even then).
Although you must usually accept a loss when you sell something back, if
you are playing with the Free Market switch on, it is possible to
accumulate money if you buy low and sell high... this sort of creative
financing is risky, but potentially lucrative! Be aware that the Scorched
Earth free market simulates a supply and demand economy. In general, this
means that the more something is bought, the greater the demand for that
item, and thus the price increases. However, you will notice the market
prices "bouncing" up and down a little bit. This is a natural consequence
of the free market, and isn't a bug. I mention it here as a warning: just
because you buy something, it doesn't mean the price will immediately
jump... it may take some time for the market to reach a new equilibrium.
The best way to understand the free market is to use it, and get a feel for
how it works.
q: This changes the quantity that you want to sell. For
each quantity, the computer will make a different offer.
Pressing Q will increase the amount to sell by one, and
ALT-Q will decrease that amount by one. You can do this
with the mouse by right and left-clicking the word "Quantity."
UP ARROW: This increases the quantity you want to sell by
one (or sets it back to zero if it was at the maximum
already). You do this with the mouse by left-clicking on
the word "Quantity." This is a short-cut for pressing Q.
DOWN ARROW: This decreases the quantity you want to sell by
one (or sets it to the maximum if it was at one). You do
this with the mouse by right-clicking on the word
"Quantity." This is a short-cut for pressing Alt-Q.
Scorched Earth page 21
Selling Items cont...
a: Accept the computer's offer. This sells the quantity of
the item selected and credits your account immediately. You
can do this with the mouse by clicking on the "Accept" button.
r: Reject the computer's offer. This quits the Selling
Panel and puts you back at your inventory. Nothing is sold,
and your account remains unchanged. You can do this with
the mouse by clicking on the "Reject" button.
ESCAPE: This is equivalent, in every way, to pressing the
Scorched Earth page 22
The current equipment list is grouped into two categories: weapons and
accessories. These are the same categories which appear on the buying
screen, except that the accessories category is labelled "Miscellaneous."
The name of the item is the name which you will see on the screen. The
cost is given in dollars per bundle, e.g. $400 for a bundle size of 10
means that you get 10 items for $400 ($40 each, but you have to buy in
multiples of 10). For weapons, a blast radius is given, which is an
estimate of how large the area of damage for that particular weapon is
(this can be effect by the current scale being used). The arms level shows
where the cut-offs are between different categories (see Configuring
Scorch, Weapons Menu, for a description of how to use arms levels).
Each category has a table describing the available items, and then lists
descriptions of the items and how to use them, along with pictures of the
icons which help you recognize the items. To further help you group
similar items, there are some subcategories within the weapons and accessories.
Some of the equipment is rendered useless when certain options are enabled
(for example Smoke Tracers are redundant if Traces are enabled anyway). By
default, such weapons will not appear on the buying menu. You can make
them appear anyway if you set the Useless Weapons option to ON when
Scorched Earth page 23
Name Cost Bundle Size Blast Radius Arms Level
Baby Missile $400 10 10 0
Missile $1,875 5 20 0
Baby Nuke $10,000 3 40 0
Nuke $12,000 1 75 1
Leap Frog $10,000 2 20,25,30 3
Funky Bomb $7,000 2 80 4
MIRV $10,000 3 20 2
Death's Head $20,000 1 35 4
Napalm $10,000 10 N/A 2
Hot Napalm $20,000 2 N/A 4
Tracer $10 20 0 0
Smoke Tracer $500 10 0 1
Baby Roller $5,000 10 10 2
Roller $6,000 5 20 2
Heavy Roller $6,750 2 45 3
Riot Charge $2,000 10 36 2
Riot Blast $5,000 5 60 3
Riot Bomb $5,000 5 30 3
Heavy Riot Bomb $4,750 2 45 3
Baby Digger $3,000 10 N/A 0
Digger $2,500 5 N/A 0
Heavy Digger $6,750 2 N/A 1
Baby Sandhog $10,000 10 N/A 0
Sandhog $16,750 5 N/A 0
Heavy Sandhog $25,000 2 N/A 1
Dirt Clod $5,000 10 20 0
Dirt Ball $5,000 5 35 0
Ton of Dirt $6,750 2 70 1
Liquid Dirt $5,000 10 N/A 2
Dirt Charge $5,000 5 N/A 1
Earth Disrupter $5,000 10 N/A 0
Plasma Blast $9,000 5 10-75 3
Laser $5,000 5 N/A 2
Scorched Earth page 24
The standard weapons are straightforward destructive devices. You launch
them and they cause damage. How much simpler can it get?
Baby Missile The Baby Missile is the earliest developed weapon,
and performs as such. Every player has an
UNLIMITED supply of them.
Missile The Missile is an enhancement of the baby missile,
increasing both the blast radius and the damage delivered.
Baby Nuke The Baby Nuke is a nuclear explosive capable of
destroying a large region.
Nuke The Nuke is a large-scale nuclear weapons capable
of mass destruction.
Leapfrog The Leapfrog has three warheads which launch one
after another. This is often very effective for
Funky Bomb The Funky Bomb explodes in a multi-colored toxic
chain reaction. Sometimes they don't explode
exactly where you want them to, but they are
generally confined to the area where they hit.
MIRV The MIRV contains five Missile warheads, which
split apart when the original missile reaches
apogee. If the warhead hits something before
reaching apogee, it will not explode.
Death's Head The Death's Head is the most destructive weapon
created to date. Functionally equivalent to
MIRVs, it contains nine large scale explosive warheads.
Napalm Napalm splashes around wherever it hits and then
bursts into hot flame. It creates more heat (and
is thus more destructive!) if it forms deep pools.
If Napalm tunnels into the dirt, it may not get a
chance to spread out. Try contact triggers if you
are having problems with fizzling Napalm.
Hot Napalm Hot Napalm is a deadly form of Napalm... much
hotter and more powerful. Otherwise, it functions
pretty much like Napalm.
Tracers Tracers have no destructive capability, but are
useful for targeting someone without causing
Scorched Earth page 25
Standard Weapons cont...
Smoke Tracers Smoke Tracers function as Tracers, except they
leave a brilliantly colored smoke trail behind
them. This makes targeting even easier. The
trails created may be erased using the System Menu.
Baby Rollers Baby Rollers are the smallest of the roller
family. When they hit ground, they roll downhill
until reaching a valley or a tank. They then
explode with the force of a baby missile. If a
roller hits a shield, it will just roll off!
Rollers Rollers are functionally the same as baby rollers,
but contain a warhead equivalent to a standard missile.
Heavy Rollers Heavy Rollers are non-nuclear, but deliver a
payload more explosive than a baby nuke.
Scorched Earth page 26
Earth Destroying Weapons
Earth destroying weapons are weapons which cause large (or small) amounts
of dirt to be destroyed. Most of these weapons cannot directly harm a
tank, though they can cause them to fall and take damage that way. Earth
destroying weapons are also good for removing mountains that are in your
way, or even removing dirt beneath yourself so that your tank is
repositioned (perhaps away from an enemy tank!)
Riot Charges Riot Charges destroy a wedge-shaped section of
dirt from around your turret. This weapon's
primary use is to unbury yourself when you get
covered with dirt.
Riot Blasts Riot Blasts are a larger version of the Riot
Charge. The destroy a wider angle of dirt, and
the thickness of the wedge destroyed is also greater.
Riot Bombs Riot Bombs destroy a spherical section of dirt
wherever the detonate. They do no damage to
tanks. Unlike Riot Charges and Riot Blasts, the
Riot Bomb is a projectile weapon.
Heavy Riot Bombs Heavy Riot Bombs are scaled up versions of Riot Bombs.
Baby Diggers Baby Diggers are useful for removing small amounts
of dirt. They tunnel when they hit ground. If
they hit a tank, they fizzle.
Diggers Diggers are more powerful versions of Baby Diggers.
Heavy Diggers Heavy Diggers are the largest Digger-weapon
available, but often fail to reach their full potential.
Baby Sandhogs Baby Sandhogs employ an alternate technology to
achieve an effect similar to the Diggers. In
addition, each tunneling warhead contains a small
but powerful charge, which can destroy an enemy
tank from beneath. Sandhogs are often useful for
burrowing beneath enemy shields, and attacking an
enemy tank directly.
Sandhogs Sandhogs contain more warheads than the Baby Sandhogs.
Heavy Sandhogs Heavy Sandhogs can potentially destroy the world,
and should be used with caution...
Scorched Earth page 27
Earth Producing Weapons
The category of Earth Producing Weapons includes weapons which take some
form of compacted earth that explodes into a much larger amount of dirt.
These weapons can be used to build fortifications, or bury enemy tanks.
There are other clever uses which can also be discovered... be creative!
The Earth Disrupter is not technically an Earth Producing weapon, but is
grouped with this category because it often has a similar tactical effect.
Dirt Clods Dirt Clods are small warheads which explode into a
sphere of dirt when hitting something.
Dirt Balls Dirt Balls are a larger form of Dirt Clods.
Ton A Ton of Dirt is a very large Dirt Ball, easily
capable of burying someone alive.
Liquid Dirt Liquid Dirt oozes out wherever it lands, filling
holes and smoothing the terrain. It is often
useful to clear the way for a Roller.
Dirt Charge A Dirt Charge expels a cloud of dirt into the air
in a wedge shape.
Earth Disrupters Earth Disrupters force all dirt to settle to the
ground if dirt is being suspended in the air.
This weapon is only useful if you are playing with
the Suspend Dirt probability set to something
greater that 0%.
Energy weapons launch attacks using power stored in batteries... without
batteries, they are not very effective. With many batteries, they can be
very effective indeed. After you fire such a weapon, you will be asked how
many batteries you want to use in the attack. Naturally, you cannot use
more batteries than you have. Select the number of batteries you want to
use by clicking on the appropriate box (the number of highlighted boxes
indicates how many batteries will be expended). You can do this with the
keyboard by pressing a number from 0 thru 9. Engage your batteries, and
watch the energy go!
The Plasma Blast The Plasma Blast allows you to expel radioactive
energy from your tank to kill neighboring enemies.
Your turret direction has no effect on the Plasma Blast.
The Laser The Laser shoots a high-intensity beam of light in
a straight line, cutting through mountains,
shields, and anything else in its way.
Scorched Earth page 28
Name Cost Bundle Size Arms Level
Heat Guidance $10,000 6 2
Ballistic Guidance $10,000 2 2
Horz Guidance $15,000 5 1
Vert Guidance $20,000 5 1
Lazy Boy $20,000 2 3
Parachute $10,000 8 2
Battery $5,000 10 2
Mag Deflector $10,000 2 2
Shield $20,000 3 3
Force Shield $25,000 3 3
Heavy Shield $30,000 2 4
Super Mag $40,000 2 4
Auto Defense $1,500 1 3
Fuel Tank $10,000 10 3
Contact Trigger $1,000 25 3
Scorched Earth page 29
The Guidance Systems category contains items which help you use your
weapons more effectively. After you buy guidance systems, they are used by
accessing the Tank Control Panel from the main playing screen.
To use a guidance system, you select it from the Tank Control Panel using
the slide bar. Move the arrow by clicking on the letter representing the
guidance system you want to use. The letters in parentheses following the
guidance system's name are the letters used in the Tank Control Panel to
represent that system, e.g. Ht will represent the Heat Guidance System.
The number on the tank menu next to the guidance system indicates how many
of them you own - if you own zero, then the letter will not appear. When
you fire your weapon on that turn, the guidance system will take effect.
After you have fired using a guidance system, the slide bar will reset to
None (N), meaning no guidance system is in effect. This way, you don't
accidentally waste expensive technology. This means that if you want to
keep using the guidance system, you need to re-select it at the beginning
of each turn.
Some guidance systems (indicated below) require you to specify a target.
The manner in which that is done is as follows: After you press SPACE or
double-click the mouse to fire, a small box will appear on screen reading
"Choose Target". At this point, you select your target using the keyboard
or the mouse. With the keyboard, you press a number between 1 and 9, or 0
(0 represents 10). This is the number of the tank you wish to aim at.
Tank 1 is the leftmost tank, tank 2 is just to the right of tank 1, and so
on. Note that if tank 1 is killed, tank 2 becomes the leftmost tank, and
will thus be referred to as tank 1 in future turns. To choose your target
with the mouse, just click the left button anywhere on the screen. The
guidance system will do its best to make your weapon explode there.
Choosing a tank by number is the same as clicking on the center of the base
of the tank. If you right-click on your target with the mouse, it will
select the center of the base of the nearest tank.
Note also that some weapons simply won't work with any guidance system. If
you fire such a weapon with a guidance system enabled, the guidance system
will not activate (i.e., it won't work, but it won't be used up either).
Weapons which fall under this category are: MIRVs, Death's Heads, Riot
Charges, Riot Blasts, and Plasma Blasts.
Heat Guidance Heat Guidance (Ht) equips your weapon with a heat
detector which, when in range of any enemy tank,
will guide it in a straight line to that tank.
You must be able to fire your weapon well enough
to get it close to the target you want to hit.
Scorched Earth page 30
Guidance Systems cont...
Ballistic Guidance Ballistic Guidance (B) will attempt to hit a
target of your choice by determining the amount of
power needed to hit the target based on your
current firing angle. You must select a target
for this guidance system. If your firing angle or
current maximum power makes the shot impossible,
this system will become confused and fire at
whatever power it feels like. The Ballistic
Guidance System can correct for any type of wind,
but cannot correct for air viscosity.
Horizontal Guidance Horizontal Guidance (H) sends your weapons in a
horizontal straight line as soon as they are even
with your target. You must select a target for
this guidance system.
Vertical Guidance Vertical Guidance (V) performs as Horizontal
Guidance, except it operates vertically. You must
select a target for this guidance system. If you
can get your weapon to go over a target, this
guidance system will insure that the target is
hit. In other words, once your warhead is above a
target, it will head straight down to that target.
Lazy Boy The Lazy Boy (L) is the ultimate guidance system.
Choose your target and watch it die. If the
weapon happens to hit a tank different from your
target, then it will explode prematurely. (C'est
Note: If you do not click directly on the tank,
the missile may explode next to the tank instead
of on it, as the missile explodes exactly where
you click. While this will no doubt damage the
tank, it probably won't have the intended effect
of killing it.
Scorched Earth page 31
The Defense Systems are ways to keep your tank alive longer. They include
mechanisms both to prevent and to repair damage to your tank. The wise
users of defense system will find their tanks lasting much longer than
Your own shields will never protect you from your own shots, though they
will protect you from secondary damage caused by your own shots (e.g. heat
damage from Napalm). This means if your shields are enabled and you shoot
straight up (with no wind), then your missile will fall straight down, and
hit and destroy your tank. Not only does this mean you're out for the
round, but you will also lose points for this! And points mean money...
Parachutes Parachutes are useful as a means of preventing
damage when falling. Parachutes work as follows:
If you are going to fall, an onboard system
computer looks down and estimates how much damage
you tank will take from the fall. If your
parachutes are deployed, and the safety threshold
is less than the amount of damage you will take,
the parachutes activate, and your tank takes no
damage from the fall (unless it lands on an enemy
tank.) If your parachutes are passive, or the
precomputed damage is less than the safety
threshold, then you will fall without parachutes,
and take damage. You can choose whether the
parachute is passive or deployed, and you can set
the safety threshold, by using the Tank Control
Panel, described elsewhere. By default,
parachutes are deployed, and the safety threshold
Batteries Batteries can be used as an energy source for
recharging your tank and for firing Plasma Blasts.
When using a battery to recharge your tank, each
battery is equivalent to 10% of your energy, or 10
points. You use batteries to recharge your tank
by using the Tank Control Menu, described elsewhere.
Mag Deflectors Mag Deflectors are simple shields which exert an
upward force on projectiles that are near and over
your tank. If a missile falls down fast enough,
the deflectors will be unable to deflect it. Mag
Deflectors cannot absorb very many shots before
Shields Shields protect your tank by absorbing damage from
explosions. In addition, a weapon which hits a
shield directly will not explode, though it will
damage the shield slightly.
Force Shields Force Shields deflect projectiles away from you,
and are generally capable of sustaining more
damage than normal shields.
Scorched Earth page 32
Defense Systems cont...
Heavy Shields Heavy Shields are immune to the shield failures
which often plague lesser shields. They are also
capable of sustaining tremendous amounts of damage.
Super Mags Super Mags are the best shields of all - stronger
than heavy shields, immune to lasers, with the
side effects of Mag Deflectors. If you can afford
them, youll be mighty tough to beat!
Auto Defense Auto Defense allows you to enable any defense
system of your tank each round before combat
begins. Specifically, this means you can access
the Tank Control Panel and any of the defensive
functions on it. The cost of Automatic Defense is
based on the number of rounds left, as buying them
once gives you this capability for the rest of the game.
Strategy Tip: Since shields do not take much damage when hit directly, the
best way to take them out is with an indirect attack. For example, land a
Baby Nuke right next to the shield, or smother it with Napalm. For a
slightly different approach, use a Dirt Clod to cover the shield with a
small layer of dirt, then use Contact Triggers on any weapon to get an easy
hit. Sandhogs often work well with this trick!
The miscellaneous extras are things that just didn't fit into the other
categories. They are described individually below.
Fuel Tanks Fuel Tanks allow you to move your tank, if it is
equipped with treads. Each fuel tank will give
you 10 units of fuel. Each unit of fuel will let
you move 1 pixel, less if you are going uphill.
To use fuel, choose f from the Tank Control Panel.
Contact Triggers Contact Triggers cause projectiles to explode the
moment they touch something. This is equivalent
to turning off the Tunneling option. To use
triggers, you must go to the Tank Control Panel.
Each trigger will cause one projectile to explode
on contact. (Note that when using multiple
warhead weapons like the MIRV, you need only use
one trigger for all warheads involved in a single shot!)
Scorched Earth page 33
Once the game has started, you may use the F1 key at any time to bring up
the System Menu. The System Menu has lets you change some parameters
during the middle of a game.
Clear Screen This option is only significant if you
are playing with traces enabled or are
using Smoke Tracers. If so, then this
will erase whatever traces are currently
on the screen.
Mass Kill This option kills everyone on the
screen, giving them all an equal portion
of whatever points remained to be won in
the round, but giving no single tank
credit for surviving the round. This
option can be used when a couple of
stupid computers seem unable to kill
each other within your lifetime.
Reassign Players This option lets you change some of the
information you specified when
configuring the players. You can change
who is controlling each tank, and what
their name is. (See Reassigning
Reassign Teams This option, if you are playing with
Teams, lets you change which team each
tank is on.
Sound This option lets you turn the sound
effects on and off. It does not give
you control over the flight sound
effects individually. (Useful for when
you put the kids to bed at night, and
want them to go to sleep.)
Save Game This option lets you save the game in
progress to a file, so that you can
continue play later. You can only use
this option from the buying menu.
Restore Game This lets you continue a game you have
previously saved to disk.
New Game This stops the game in progress and
starts all over at the main menu. This
is just a fast way or restarting if you
dont want to finish the current game.
Scorched Earth page 34
System Menu cont...
Quit Game This option lets you quit a game in
progress. You will be prompted with a
"Do you really want to quit?" message,
and then promptly returned to DOS (or
wherever you came from...)
When you are finished with the System Menu, press ESCAPE to return to your
previous activity, or click anywhere outside the menu.
Scorched Earth page 35
When you choose Reassign Players, you will be given a list of player names,
and who controls them. You may change any of the settings you selected
when choosing the players initially.
To change something about a player, click on the name of the tank you want
to change, or press the number highlighted on the button next to the name.
This will put you onto the Player Initialization Panel, which works just
like it did when you choose the players initially. You may change anything
you want, then select "Done" when you are finished making changes.
When you choose Reassign Teams, you will be given a list of player names,
and which team each is on. You may change any player to any team. Select
"Done" when you are finished making changes. If you are using the keyboard,
press a number for the player you want to change teams. For example, each
time you press 1, player 1 will switch to the next team.
There are a couple of important points to note about saved games. The most
important is that, with this version of Scorch, not all information is
saved. In particular, the only information which is saved from the main
configuration menus is the number of players and number of rounds. This
means that you can save a game, restart Scorch, change some of those
options, and restore the game with the new options. If you want to save
the options, you must do so by selecting "Save Changes" from the initial
menu. Remember that you may use multiple configuration files by specifying
a filename when starting Scorch, e.g. "scorch myconfig.cfg".
It is also important to remember that although you can restore a game at
almost any point once play has started, you can only save the game while on
the Buying Menus. This is so that the playing field doesn't need to be
saved (this would take up a considerable amount of disk space, in addition
to being slow.) An important side effect is that if you have no money, you
will be unable to save the game, as you will never get to the buying menu.
In this case, you must win a round before you can save the game!
Scorch will let you overwrite an existing file to save a game, but it will
always prompt you first if it is about to do so.
Finally, note that when you restore a game, it may take a moment for the
computer to catch on to the fact. If there is a missile in the air, the
game will not restart until it lands.
Scorched Earth page 36
Scorched Earth has quite an extensive set of options for configuring how
the game is played. The defaults for most of these are pretty good, but as
many people have different preferences, an easy system has been designed to
customize Scorch to each player's taste. Each of the menus is documented
below, along with a brief description of what the menu covers, and then an
item by item explanation of all the options. Letters which are bold and
underlined (like the 't' in this), are hot-keys - if you press that key on
the keyboard it is the same as clicking on that button with the mouse.
Left-clicking and right-clicking with the mouse on a button will cause the
amount to decrease and increase, respectively.
Some entries require a filename. If this is the case, a blinking "caret"
will appear when you select the appropriate choice. You may then type in a
name, and press ENTER. The "caret" will disappear, and you can continue
When you click on Save Changes, your current configuration, or set of
choices, will be written to the file scorch.cfg. The next time you start
Scorch, it will use the same set of options. YOUR OPTIONS WILL ONLY BE
SAVED IF YOU SELECT THE "SAVE CHANGES" BUTTON. Otherwise, any options you
change will only last for the current game.
It is possible to use multiple configuration files. To do this, when you
run Scorch, type "scorch myconfig.cfg". That will tell Scorch to use the
file myconfig.cfg instead of scorch.cfg. Change the options to how you
like them and click on "Save Changes". The file myconfig.cfg will be
created if it didn't already exist, or updated otherwise. You can then use
this configuration file whenever you want. There is no limit to how many
configuration files you can have, but you must select which one you want to
use each time you start Scorch. If you don't choose one, Scorch will
always load the file scorch.cfg.
Feel free to experiment... you can always reset the defaults by deleting
scorch.cfg, or by running fix.bat. Scorch will automatically recreate the
configuration file with the built-in defaults. Scorch.cfg can also be
edited directly using any word processor or editor that will edit pure
ASCII files. (i.e. Sidekick's Notepad, PC Tools Desktop, etc.) (See also
"Changing the Talking Tanks")
Scorched Earth page 37
Brief Summary of On-screen Controls
Counter/Cycle: These controls are used to enter numbers or
to select one item from a list. Pressing the hotkey or
clicking on the associated text with the left-mouse button
causes numbers to increment, or selects the next item on the
list. Pressing ALT and the hotkey, or right-clicking on the
text, causes numbers to decrease, or choices to go to the
previous item on the list.
Toggle: This is used to represent a on/off choice. If the
box is checked, the option is enabled, or "on." Otherwise,
the option is "off."
Text entry: This is used to enter text. When there is a
blinking vertical line showing (called a "caret"), then
anything you type will go into the text box. Press ESCAPE
to cancel, or ENTER to accept what you typed. Clicking
anywhere with the mouse is equivalent to pressing ENTER.
Button: This is used to initiate some action or activity.
The most common use in the configuration menus is to pop up
a sub-menu or to start the game.
Scorched Earth page 38
The main menu gives you direct access to the most common options, and lets
you choose between several sub-menus for more options. Any entry followed
by three dots (...) causes a menu to pop up when you select it. After you
have chosen any options, you can decide whether or not to save them (as
explained above), and then press the S key to start the game, or click on
the Start button.
Label Range Default Description
----- ----- ------- -----------
Start Start playing the game.
Players 2-10 2 Select the number of people who will be
playing, including computer players.
Rounds 1-1000 10 Select how many rounds will be played.
Sound... Go to the Sound Menu (See below).
Hardware... Go to the Hardware Menu (See below).
Economics... Go to the Economics Menu (See below).
Physics... Go to the Physics Menu (See below).
Landscape... Go to the Landscape Menu (See below).
Play Options... Go to the Play Options Menu (See below).
Weapons... Go to the Weapons Menu (See below).
Save Changes Save any changes which you have made to
the current configuration file (probably
Scorched Earth page 39
The sound menu lets you decide what kind of noises Scorch will make. With
this, you can choose no sound or lots of sound.
Label Range Default Description
----- ----- ------- -----------
Sound ON ON If the sound is ON, then Scorch will generate
OFF sound effects using the PC's speaker. If OFF,
it will shut up, making no sound at all.
Flight Sounds POS OFF This option determines what sounds, if any,
VEL your weapons make while streaking through the
OFF air towards their target.
POS makes sounds based on the height of the
VEL makes sounds based on the current
projectile velocity. POS seems to be preferred
to VEL by most people.
OFF is, of course, no sound.
Scorched Earth page 40
The hardware options have to do with making Scorch work as best as possible
on your computer. In general, the defaults for these options will be the
right thing. If you find you are having a problem with your monitor,
mouse, or keyboard, one of these options might be just what you are looking
for! Be careful though, as improperly setting these options can also make
Scorch run very poorly, or not at all. (If you're in over your head, just
run the program fix.bat, and it will wipe out your configuration file.
Then when you run Scorch, it will reset the defaults automatically.)
Note that Scorch will, by default, use a numeric coprocessor if present.
This makes everything in the game go faster. In particular, you will want
a much larger firing delay. To slow everything down, you can set the
environment variable 87 to 'N'. (To do this, type "set 87=N" at the DOS
prompt before starting Scorch. For more info on environment variables,
consult your DOS manual). You can remove this setting from the environment
by typing "set 87=" at the DOS prompt.
Label Range Default Description
----- ----- ------- -----------
Graphics Mode 320x200 360x480 This option lets you choose which
320x240 graphics mode Scorched Earth will run
320x400 in. Any changes you make here must be
320x480 saved from the Main Menu, and will not
360x480 take effect until you exit Scorch and
640x400 restart it. Note that the available
640x480 graphics modes may depend on your
800x600 video hardware - if you choose an
1024x768 incompatible mode Scorch may hang when
starting. To fix this problem, simply
delete the file scorch.cfg. 320x200
mode should work on all VGA monitors
Bios Keyboard ON OFF This option can be safely ignored,
OFF unless your system locks up in strange
ways while playing Scorch. It forces
Scorch to use the BIOS to access the
keyboard, rather than accessing the
keyboard directly. This slows down
the response of the game while
playing, and should be avoided.
Small Memory ON OFF This option is for players who have
OFF too little memory for all of Scorch's
options. By selecting this, Scorch
will disable some of the extended
features, and use less memory. In
particular, the awesome nuclear
explosions will be much more bland.
Scorched Earth page 41
Hardware Menu cont...
Pointer None Mouse This option tells Scorch whether you
Mouse want to use a mouse, joystick, or just
Joystick your keyboard (the keyboard works
whether or not use are using a
pointing device). If you don't have a
mouse or joystick, Scorch will not try
to use one. (But wouldn't this be a
good time to buy one?)
To use a mouse, Scorch requires a
Microsoft compatible mouse driver.
If you have a Gravis Gamepad, this
should be treated as a joystick.
Mouse Rate .5-5. .5 This option lets you control how fast
the cursor on screen moves compared to
how fast you move the mouse. High
numbers mean fast movement!
Firing Delay 0-500 100 This option determines how long it
takes the computer to draw projectiles
when they are fired. If you like
suspense, make it slow (high numbers).
If you want to get on with the game,
make it fast (low numbers).
Falling Delay 0-1000 10 This lets you determine how fast the
tanks fall on screen. If you don't
like to wait, set this to zero.
Scorched Earth page 42
The economics menu has options that control how money will affect the game
and what methods of scoring will be used.
Label Range Default Description
----- ----- ------- -----------
Interest Rate 0-.30 .05 If you start a round with unspent
money "in the bank", then you will
earn interest on that money. The
interest rate determines what percent
you earn. This rate also affects the
cost of repeated-use items such as the
Cash at Start $0-$1,000,000 $0 This determines how much money each
player starts with. If it is
non-zero, players will have a chance
to buy items before the first round
Computers Buy ON ON This determines whether or not
OFF computer-controlled tanks can buy
items with their money. If you are
having a hard time beating them, cheat
a little and try turning this option off.
Free Market ON OFF This option will simulate a free
OFF market economy while you play Scorch.
This means that as the games
progresses, weapons that people buy
frequently will become more expensive,
while weapons which no one is buying
will become cheaper. If you are using
this option, Scorch will create a file
scorch.mkt, to track the market from
game to game. Delete this file to
reset the defaults.
This option is often useful for
stimulating new strategies (Necessity
is the mother of invention.)
Scorched Earth page 43
Economics Menu cont...
Scoring Mode BASIC STANDARD This determines how the game will be
GREEDY BASIC scoring gives you points only
for killing tanks and surviving a
STANDARD scoring gives you less points
for actually killing a tank, but gives
you points every time you damage a
tank or shield.
GREEDY scoring works like STANDARD
scoring, but the final rankings at the
end of each round are based on the Net
Worth of your tank, e.g. how much cash
you have in the bank plus the
depreciated value of all weapons, etc.
in stock ("He who dies with the most
Scorched Earth page 44
The Physics Menu lets you control different aspects of reality, such as the
atmosphere and gravity of the planet you are fighting on, and whether the
edges you see on screen have any meaning to the game, or are just windows
onto a larger playing field.
Label Range Default Description
----- ----- ------- -----------
Air Viscosity 0-20 0 This determines whether or not the air is
viscous, i.e. does it slow down
projectiles moving through it? If you
are using viscous air, ballistic guidance
will not work properly, nor will some of
the computer players.
Gravity .05-10 .2 This determines the force of gravity
Suspend Dirt 0-100 0 This number allows dirt to remain
suspended in the air some of the time.
It is a percentage chance, per shot, that
all the dirt on screen will fall. It can
be used on slow computers to speed up the
game, or to introduce more variety.
Earth Disrupters are only interesting
with this option enabled.
Tanks Fall ON ON If this is turned off, tanks will not
OFF fall when the ground is shot out from
beneath them. Not very realistic, but an
Borders Extend 0-10000 75 This option specifies how far off-screen
projectiles should be tracked before
being counted as a "miss." If this is
zero, no missile will ever return to the
screen or explode off the edge, even if
the wind would have brought it back
on-screen. A high enough value here will
have the computer track any projectile
until it hits somewhere, but might add
unnecessarily long pauses as it tracks
Scorched Earth page 45
Physics Menu cont...
Effect of Walls CONCRETE NONE This option controls what happens when
PADDED missiles go past the borders of the
SPRING CONCRETE walls will block shots from
WRAP going off screen in any direction.
RANDOM PADDED walls reflect shots, but absorb
ERRATIC some of their energy first.
NONE RUBBER walls will cause projectiles to
bounce off them (Poolsharks take
advantage of this).
SPRING walls are similar to RUBBER walls,
but they give the projectile a "kick"
when they reflect them, much as pinball
WRAPAROUND edges cause the left and right
edge to wrap around, i.e. a missile going
off screen to the right will come on
screen to the left.
RANDOM tells the computer to pick one of
the above methods at the beginning of
ERRATIC tells the computer to choose a
method before each shot.
You can tell what the current state of
the walls is by their color:
Gray: no effect
Scorched Earth page 46
The Landscape Menu lets you control the environment in which you will
fight. The first few options allow you to set various characteristics
determining how the weather will behave and what the sky will look like.
The last few options determine how the land on which you fight will appear.
Using these options, you can choose low, rolling hills, steep, craggy
mountains, and anything in between.
Label Range Default Description
----- ----- ------- -----------
Sky PLAIN RANDOM This determines how the background sky will
STORMY look. RANDOM tells the computer to decide
STARS at the beginning of each round what kind of
SHADED background it should use (any type except
SUNSET BLACK). Note that some skies are hostile,
CAVERN and will launch their own attacks, such as
Max. Wind 0-500 200 This determines the maximum wind velocity.
If 0, there will be no wind.
Changing Wind OFF OFF If this is enabled, the wind will change
ON slightly between each shot. This can be a
real pain when targeting someone,
especially if you aren't paying attention.
Hostile OFF ON If this is turned OFF, then the "Hostile"
Environment ON actions of some of the backgrounds will
become non-hostile. This means that they
will act the same, but will cause no damage
Bumpiness 0-100 20 This determines how smooth or bumpy the
landscape will be.
Slope 0-100 20 This determines how steep hills and valleys
Flatten Peaks ON OFF When on, this forces the hills to flatten
OFF out at a certain steepness, keeping them
from being too craggy.
Random Land ON OFF If this is on, the above options are set
OFF randomly by the computer at the beginning
of each round. This allows for a wide
variety of terrains. If you choose this
option, none of the above three options are
Percent 0-100 20 How often will the scanned mountains be
Scanned Mountains used instead of random ones. If you have
lots of scanned mountains, you might want
to consider making this higher.
Scorched Earth page 47
Play Options Menu
This menu controls different aspects of the game, and what controls will be
Label Range Defaults Description
----- ----- -------- -----------
Mode SequentialSequential This option controls how you play the
Synchronous game. In sequential mode, the
Simultaneous default, players takes turns one
after another. In simultaneous mode,
all players and computers can aim and
fire at once. In synchronous mode,
all players aim their weapons at the
beginning of each round, and all
shots go off at the same time. For
more information, see "Simultaneous
Mode," and "Synchronous Mode" later
in this manual.
Teams NONE NONE Choose this option if you want to
STANDARD play with teams (e.g. several tanks
CORPORATE ganging up on other tanks). For more
VICIOUS info about tanks, see Being a Team
Status Bar ON OFF This enables the status bar, which is
OFF a second bar beneath the normal one
you see when playing Scorch. This
bar lets you access most of the
things the Tank Control Panel does.
Play Order RANDOM RANDOM This controls the order of play.
LOSERS-FIRST RANDOM means each turn the order in
WINNERS-FIRST chosen randomly.
ROUND-ROBIN LOSERS-FIRST means that whoever is in
last place always goes first, and the
winner goes last.
WINNERS-FIRST is the opposite of
ROUND-ROBIN means the play order is
random, but the first shot each round
goes from one player to the next, in
order (i.e. if Player 1 went first in
Round 1, Player 2 goes first in Round
2, and so on).
Fast Computers ON OFF If this option is on, then whenever
OFF there are only computers attacking
one another, the pace of the game
will speed up until humans are
playing again. This can speed up the
end of a round significantly.
Scorched Earth page 48
Play Options Menu cont...
Talking Tanks OFF OFF If this option is set to COMPUTERS,
COMPUTERS computer-controlled tanks will "talk"
ALL to you by flashing messages on
screen, like comic characters. If it
is set to ALL, then all tanks will
print messages, regardless of who
controls them. OFF means nobody talks.
Talk Probability 0-100 100 This determines how often tanks say
something before they fire. 100 means
they talk 100% of the time.
Attack file Any File talk1.cfg This should be the name of a file
which contains messages tanks will
say when attacking.
Die file Any File talk2.cfg This should be the name of a file
which contains messages tanks will
say when they die.
Changing the Talking Tanks
If you want to change the message files, use any editor that will edit
straight ASCII files, or use your favorite word processor, and when saving
the file, use the ASCII option. (Sometimes this is called print to disk,
or printed text.) The attack file is called talk1.cfg, the die file is
talk2.cfg. Each comment should take up one line in the file, just add new
comments to the end. If a comment appears twice, it will be used twice as
often (and so on). Blank lines provide for the tanks to say nothing sometimes.
If you're feeling really creative, you can just make up your own file from
scratch, and type its name into the Attack file and Die file options.
(NOTE: scorch.cfg can be edited in a similar manner). If you have any
favorite phrases or comments, feel free to send them to the author for
possible inclusion in a future release!
Scorched Earth page 49
These options let you customize which weapons you want to play with and how
they work. By default all weapons are allowed, but some people prefer to
have a more restricted set of choices. Scorch caters to all people.
Label Range Default Description
----- ----- ------- -----------
Arms Level 0-4 4 This lets you disallow the use of
certain items from the game. Using an
Arms Level of 0 is often useful for
beginners, so there aren't so many
options to deal with. Some people just
don't like using the large weapons at
all. To see what items belong to what
Arms Level, consult the Equipment List.
The Arms Level also affects available
Bomb icon INVISIBLE BIG This lets you choose what the projectile
SMALL will look like when you fire it: either
BIG a small dot, a slightly larger dot, or
no dot at all. This is just a matter of
preference, though invisible missiles
are mighty hard to aim!
Tunneling ON ON If tunneling is OFF, weapons explode the
OFF instant they hit dirt (or anything
else). If it is ON, they will tunnel
when they hit dirt, burrowing into the
ground before exploding. They might
even come out the other side of a small
enough pile of dirt, though at reduced
velocity. If you play with tunneling
ON, you can always buy Contact Triggers
which force any projectile to explode on
Scale NORMAL NORMAL For the blood-thirsty players, Scorch
MEDIUM can be "scaled up", so that the weapons
LARGE are more destructive than usual. MEDIUM
is somewhat larger than NORMAL, and
LARGE is yet another step larger. Note
that some of the graphics are not as
nice when the game is "scaled up," due
to memory constraints.
Scorched Earth page 50
Weapons Menu cont...
Trace Paths ON OFF If this is on, each projectile will
OFF leave a trail on the screen of it's
path, in the color of the firing tank.
This can be useful in targeting, as you
don't have to remember where your last
shot hit. When using this option, you
can use the Clear Traces option from the
System Menu whenever the screen gets too
cluttered. Smoke Tracers have a similar
Extra Dirt ON OFF This controls how much dirt the Dirt
OFF Charges let out. If you like lots of
dirt, you can use this. It's fun but
can really slow the game down. (It also
mean you should pay extra attention to
buying earth handling weapons!)
Useless Items ON OFF If this is OFF, then items which have no
OFF effect on the game will not appear on
the buying menu. (For example Smoke
Tracers have no purpose if you are
playing with Trace Paths set to ON.)
These options cannot be selected from any of the normal menus, but are
still supported for backwards compatibility. You can only change them by
editing the file scorch.cfg. These options may not be supported in future
versions of Scorch. If you like them, and think they should stay, write
the author and let him know.
Label Range Default Description
----- ----- ------- -----------
Impact Damage ON ON If this is on, tanks take damage from a
OFF fall when they hit the ground. If it is
off, tanks take damage as they are falling.
This isn't an important distinction, just a
matter of preference. Total damage done is
the same in either case.
Scorched Earth page 51
This is a brief summary of the differences between Simultaneous mode and
normal play. The main difference is that many people (and computers!) will
be moving at once. Because there is only one keyboard, and everybody is
using it simultaneously, it is important that each player have a unique key
for everything he or she wants to do. For this reason, you probably
wouldn't play Simultaneous mode with more than three players. When you
assign keystrokes at the beginning of the game, try to keep each player to
their own section of the keyboard, so that their fingers don't get crossed.
In simultaneous mode, whoever hits the keyboard fastest moves most often
(the computers move at a medium sort of speed regardless). When someone
fires, they cannot fire again until that missile has exploded, but they may
change their aim while the missile is still in flight.
The status bar on top of the screen gives much less information in
Simultaneous Mode, because all players are sharing the screen also. Each
tank's current firing power and weapon are displayed across the top bar...
the colors will match your tanks' colors. Also, when you increase power,
your tank will flash brightly. When you decrease power, your tank will
flash dark. Changing weapons causes your tank to flash red. These are
additional clues you have about what your tank is doing, but be careful not
to waste good weapons! If you have the status bar enabled, you will also be
able to see each player's remaining power and shield strength, if any.
There are no shortcuts on the status bar in simultaneous mode.
When all players but one are dead, the end of round status will come up as
usual, and the players with cash will have an opportunity to buy things
just like normal Scorch. When the round begins again, though, watch out!
The special keys i, t, and r are not supported in Simultaneous Mode, and
neither is the mouse. Thus, it is impossible to use the Tank Control
Panel. You can only use Shields if you have an Automatic Defense System.
Fuel, Contact Triggers, and Guidance Systems are not useful at all. Also,
unless you purchase an Automatic Defense System, parachutes will always be
deployed, and you will be unable to change the threshold. This is so that
each player needs only six keys.
Since you cannot access the Tank Control Panel, batteries also work
somewhat differently than normal: anytime your tank's power falls below 91
but the tank is still intact, as many batteries will trigger as necessary
to bring your power above 90, up to however many you have (your tank will
flash green when this happens).
The System Menu functions as it does during normal play.
Scorched Earth page 52
This is a brief summary of the differences between Synchronous mode and
normal play. The main difference is that instead of shots going off
between player's turns, all shots are fired only after all the players have
decided where they are going to shoot. After each player has chosen a
power and angle, "fire" your weapon as usual. Instead of firing the
weapon, your tank will be highlighted, indicating that it is ready. When
all the tanks are ready, all shots go off at once, wreaking their
respective damage. As soon as the dust settles, everyone who survived gets
to choose another shot, and so on, until the round is over.
This mode is somewhat more fair than the normal, sequential mode, as all
players have an equal number of shots. Note that in this mode, it is often
advantageous to go last, because then you'll know where your foes are aiming!
Being a Team Player
By using team mode you can gang up on different players. Scorch supports
three different kinds of teams (in addition to no teams at all). Normally,
you will lose points for damaging or killing your teammates - so be nice to
Standard This is a typical team setup - players work
together to eliminate opposing teams.
Corporate This is similar to standard teams, but there
is only one bank account for each team, so all
the teammates can share the winnings.
Vicious This options a little different - as long as
there are tanks from at least two teams alive,
it works just like standard teams. Once only
one team is left, however, it turns into a
free-for-all where only the last tank wins.
Sometimes this is a fun way to play with a
friend - you can both be on the same team, and
play against the computer team. As soon as
you wipe out the computer, see who can destroy
the other quickest!
Scorched Earth page 53
It is my hope that Scorched Earth will provide a great source of enjoyment
to all age groups. This version of Scorch should solidify all the
improvements made so far, and lays the groundwork for significant future
enhancements. I am releasing this game as shareware in order to gain as
large an audience as possible. Scorch is not crippleware. Each and every
copy is a fully functioning game.
If you would like to register Scorch send 20 dollars to the author, at the
address listed below. By so doing, you are supporting the further
development of Scorch. Users who register will receive a disk with the
current registered version, which contains more scanned mountain ranges,
and disables the tanks shareware reminders. It also gives you access to the
Anyone interested in Scorch, or with ideas for improvement, or questions
for support, is encouraged to contact me as described below. Please do not
call me at home. The author makes no warranty about the fitness of Scorch
for any purpose, nor does he guarantee that it will not crash your system.
Nevertheless, every attempt has been made to insure that Scorch is a
robust, user-friendly game.
The most recent version of Scorched Earth will be kept on CompuServe (under
the GAMERS forum), America Online (in the Games section), an on the
internet (at ftp://tower.itis.com/pub/scorch). By the time you read this,
Scorch should also be available on most major bulletin boards, and from the
finer discerning shareware vendors. Minor bug fixes and other goodies may
appear from time to time at any of these sites. Feel free to upload the
shareware version of Scorch to your favorite local BBS, and share it with
The official Scorch web site is: http://tower.itis.com/scorch.
The official Scorch BBS is located in Illinois, and now supports Credit
Card Registration. Just call:
(708) 355-6942 Micro Overflow, Naperville, IL
Scorched Earth page 54
Scorch was written using Borland C++ and Turbo Assembler. The illustrated
version of this manual was prepared using Microsoft Word for Windows and
Microsoft Paint, and the ASCII version was automatically generated using a
custom RTF-to-Scorch-Manual filter.
About the Author
Wendell Hicken, a.k.a Sprig, was born March 14, 1967. He graduated from
Caltech with a B.S. in Computer Science in 1991, and is currently working
on developing tools for programmers. In his spare time he enjoys the finer
things of life, like computer simulations of exploding tanks.
I may be contacted at any of the following places (but please, no phone calls):
P.O. Box 1215
Whittier, CA 90609-1215
CompuServe: 70671,606 (may not be valid much longer...)
Scorched Earth page 55
ASCII, 36 Contact Triggers, 49
Accessories List, 28 Corporate Teams, 52
Angle, 9 Customizing Scorch, 36
Attack File, 48 Cyan Walls, 45
Author, 54 Cyborg, 7
Auto Defense, 32 Death's Head, 24
Baby Digger, 26 Defense Systems, 31
Baby Missile, 24 Deflectors, Mag, 31
Baby Nuke, 24 Delay, Falling, 41
Baby Rollers, 25 Deploying Parachutes, 31
Baby Sandhog, 26 Die File, 48
Backgrounds, 46 Digger, 26
Ball, Dirt, 27 Digger, Baby, 26
Ballistic Guidance, 29 Digger, Heavy, 26
Basic Scoring, 42 Dirt Ball, 27
Batteries, 31 Dirt Charge, 27
Recharging Your Tank, 15 Dirt Clod, 27
Being a Team Player, 52 Dirt, Liquid, 27
Blast, Plasma, 27 Dirt, Ton of, 27
Blast, Riot, 26 Disrupter, Earth, 27
Bomb Icon, 49 Earth Destroying Weapons, 26
Bomb, Funky, 24 Earth Disrupter, 27
Bomb, Heavy Riot, 26 Earth Producing Weapons, 27
Bomb, Riot, 26 Economics Menu, 42
Borders Extend, 44 Effect of Walls, 45
Boy, Lazy, 30 Equipment List, 22
Bumpiness, 46 Erratic Walls, 45
Buying Equipment, 18 Extra Dirt, 50
Careful Keyboard, 40 Falling Delay, 41
Cash, 42 Fast Computers, 47
Cash at Start, 42 Filthy Lucre, 42
Caverns, 46 Firing, 11
Changing Weapons, 11 Firing Speed, 41
Changing Wind, 46 fix.bat, 36
Charge, Dirt, 27 Fixed Emplacements, 8
Charge, Riot, 26 Flatten Peaks, 46
Choose Target, 29 Flight Sounds, 39
Chooser, 7 Force Shields, 31
Choosing Players, 6 Free Market, 42
Clear Screen, 33 Fuel Remaining, 15
Clod, Dirt, 27 Fuel Tanks, 32
Command Line Options, 36 Funky Bomb, 24
Controlled Players, 7 Graphics Mode, 40
Computerized Opponents, 7 Gravity, 44
Computers Buy, 42 Gray Walls, 45
Concrete Walls, 45 Greedy Scoring, 42
Configuration Files, 36 Green Walls, 45
Configuration FilesSaving, 38 Guidance Systems, 29
Contact Triggers, 32 Guidance Systems,
Scorched Earth page 56
Guidance, Ballistic, 29 Nuke, 24
Guidance, Heat, 29 Nuke, Baby, 24
Guidance, Horizontal, 30 Number of Players, 38
Guidance, Vertical, 30 Number of Rounds, 38
Hardware Menu, 40 Options, Archaic, 50
Heat Guidance, 29 Padded Walls, 45
Heavy Digger, 26 Parachutes, 31
Heavy Riot Bomb, 26 Changing State, 15
Heavy Rollers, 25 Deployed, 31
Heavy Sandhog, 26 Passive, 31
Heavy Shields, 32 Safety Threshold, 15
Help!, 4 Safety Threshold, 31
Hills, 46 Passivating Parachutes, 31
Horizontal Guidance, 30 Percent Scanned Mountains, 46
Hostile Environment, 46 Physics Menu, 44
Hot Napalm, 24 Pinball Walls, 45
Plain Sky, 46
Impact Damage, 50 Plasma Blast, 27
Initial Cash, 42 Play Options Menu, 47
Interest Rate, 42 Play Order, 47
Introduction, 3 Players, How Many, 38
Inventory, 12 Playing the Game, 9
Inventory Panel, 17 Pointer, 40
Joystick, Enabling, 40 Poolshark, 7
Kibitzing, 12 Power, 9
Landscape Menu, 46 Quick Start, 4
Lasers, 27 Quit Game, 33
Lazy Boy, 30 Random Land, 46
Leapfrog, 24 Random Skies, 46
Liquid Dirt, 27 Random Walls, 45
Mag Deflectors, 31 Reassigning Players, 35
Main Menu, 38 Reassigning Teams, 35
Mass Kill, 33 Red Walls, 45
Max Wind, 46 Registering Scorch, 53
MIRV, 24 Restore Game, 33
Miscellaneous Extras, 32 Retreat, 12
Missile, 24 Riot Blast, 26
Missile, Baby, 24 Riot Bomb, 26
Money, 42 Riot Bomb, Heavy, 26
Moron, 7 Riot Charge, 26
Mountains, 46 Rollers, 25
Rollers, Baby, 25
Mouse Rate, 41 Rollers, Heavy, 25
Mouse, Enabling, 40 Rounds, How Many, 38
Moving your Tank, 16 Rubber Walls, 45
Napalm, 24 Safety Threshold, 31
Napalm, Hot, 24 Sandhog, 26
New Game, 33 Sandhog, Baby, 26
Night Sky, 46 Sandhog, Heavy, 26
Scorched Earth page 57
Save Changes, 38 Tanks, Fuel, 32
Save Game, 33 Target Selection, 29
Saved Games, 35 Ton of Dirt, 27
Scale, 49 Tosser, 7
Scanned Mountains, 46 Trace Paths, 49
scorch.cfg, 36 Tracers, 24
scorch.mkt, 42 Tracers, Smoke, 24
Scoring Mode, 42 Treads, 8
Selecting a Target, 29 Triggers, 15
Selling Items, 20 Triggers, Contact, 32
Shields, 31 Using, 15
Automatic Defense, 32 Triple-turreted Tank, 8
Engaging, 15 Tunneling, 49
Force Shields, 31 Unknown, 7
Heavy Shields, 32 Useless Items, 50
Mag Deflectors, 31 Vertical Guidance, 30
Normal Shields, 31 Vicious Teams, 52
Selecting, 15 Viscosity, Air, 44
Super Mags, 32 Walls, Effect of, 45
Shooter, 7 Weapons List, 23
Simultaneous Mode, 47 Weapons Menu, 49
Simultaneous Play, 51 White Walls, 45
Sky, 46 Wind, 46
Slope, 46 Wraparound Walls, 45
Small Memory, 40 Yellow Walls, 45
Smoke Tracers, 24
Sound Menu, 39
Spring Walls, 45
Standard Scoring, 42
Standard Teams, 52
Standard Weapons, 24
Starry Sky, 46
Status Bar, 47
Stormy Skies, 46
Super Mags, 32
Suspend Dirt, 44
Synchronous Play, 51
System Menu, 33
Talk Probability, 48
Talking Tanks, 47
Tank Control Panel, 14
Tank Icon Selection, 8
Tanks Fall, 44