IronSeed (manual.txt)


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                                      Techbook and Trials Guide
                                          Quick Start Manual

             Part I. Features


             2.5 Meg of compressed video data conveys a universe that is both
rich and
             vibrant having believability and depth unparalleled by any other
             fiction world.  From the glint in the Sengzhac's eye to the
grotesque squirming
             of the worm-like D'Pahk each alien race is unique in its
movement and alive
             with animation.


             We present to you a sound track that is as dark and seductive as
the world of
             Ironseed.  Using one of the most advanced realtime digital mixers
available for
             the PC we bring you a soundtrack unmatched by any non-CD game
title.  After
             nearly eight months of work on the sound alone we present a
combination of
             modern dance, classical, and eastern elements in Dolby Surround
that form a
             powerful musical score.  The Dual Module Player mixes digital
samples in
             realtime allowing for smaller sound files.  The sound stays under
10 Meg while
             supporting over an hour of playback at up to 44 kilobytes per sec. 
That's an
             effective data compression ratio of over 16 to one!  DMP also
supports a wide
             range of audio cards... Sound Blaster compatibles as well as the
complete Sound
             Blaster family, the Aria, and the Gravis Ultra Sound.


             With a backdrop 4 years in the making and a story line equivalent
to a 250 page
             novel, the universe of Ironseed is a dynamic one.  There are 10
             empires and the possibility for a thousand others that evolve as
the game is
             played.  Your struggle to unite the free worlds will take you from
the trade
             circles of the Guild to the mystic home of the Quai Tetrad. You
will be deigned
             the voice of the Icon and as their liaison will be the only defense
against the
             scavenger armada.  Ironseed... the ship... the movement... and now,
the last
             hope for mankind.

             Part II. System and Environment

              A. Minimal System Requirements

                  Basic Program:
                   - 80386 processor
                   - 25 MHz clock speed
                   - VGA card and monitor
                   - 530,000 bytes of low memory
                   - MSDOS 4.0
                   - MS compatible mouse

                  Sound Setup:
                   - Aria, ProAudio Spectrum family, Sound Blaster family,
                     Gravis UltraSound or a compatible of one of these sound
                   - 1 Mb of EMS memory
                   - 600,000 bytes of low memory

              B. System Recommendations

                   - 80486 processor
                   - math co-processor
                   - 33 MHz, 50 MHz for best performance
                   - accelerated video board
                   - disk cache TSR program
                   - ram disk TSR program
                   - 615,000 bytes of low memory

             Part III. Installation

             To install the program, follow these steps:

              A.  Boot the computer.

              B.  Insert the first disk into the floppy drive.

              C.  Type A: (or the appropriate floppy drive) followed by a
                  carriage return.

              D.  Type ISDEMO also followed by a carriage return.  The installer
will run.

              E.  Follow the prompts for the installation.

             Part IV. Optimizing Your System

              A.  Try running a disk cache program such as Smartdrive.  This
                  will allow frequently accessed data to remain in memory
                  longer rather than in the slower access disk drive.  Optimal
                  size is about 1 Mb for 4 Mb of RAM or 2 Mb for 8 Mb of RAM.

              B.  Set an environment variable 'TEMP' to a ram disk
such as
                  Ramdrive.  This is simply a 'SET TEMP=' and the
drive letter
                  of the ram disk in the autoexec.bat file.  Make sure that
                  the ramdisk has at least 128 kb.

              C.  Disable any TSR's that require large amounts of the
                  processor's time.  Even a simple keyboard enhancer can
                  valuable time from the CPU.

             Part V. Trouble Shooting

              A. Sound Failure:

                 Make sure that the sound card is installed correct, volume
                 turned up sufficiently and there is at least 1 Mb of EMS

              B. Open File or Fatal File Error:

                 Make sure that your current directory contains the Ironseed
                 executable and all the subdirectories such as data, sound,
                 and saved games.  Test your hard drive for failures in case a
                 file has been corrupted.

              C. Out of memory Error:

                 The program itself, Is.exe,  requires about 600k of low
                 memory.  If sound is used this may increase.  It is important
                 to note that the main program will not run with less memory.

             Part VI. The Story So Far...

             It is the thirty-eighth century.  The fall of Earth is but a legend
             humanity has migrated to a terraformed Mars.  The Pentateuch, a
group of five
             preists, rules the newly risen technocracy with an iron fist.

             In a bold attempt to eliminate the last of their political
opponents, the five
             began the purgation trials.  With guerilla tactics their followers
went about
             convicting those who would oppose them.

             To counter them an underground movement was initiated and an
elaborate plan was
             conceived.  A virus was spread throughout the circuit matrix.  A
thousand days
             from inception, the virus was scheduled to delete all personality
files.  The
             Ironseed movement as it was called, hoped that by stealing a ship
they could
             escape... leaving behind Mars... and the Pentateuch.  Their intent
was to
             return after the fall of the technocracy. ...but a computer
malfunction turned
             a thousand days into a thousand years...

             As the captain, you are awakened along with the crew by an alien
horde.   After
             a brief dialogue, communication is cut off and they attack. The
game begins as
             the attack ends.

             Part VII. In The Beginning...

             After the introduction you should see the Ironseed logo floating
above a
             starfield.  At the bottom of this screen four options will be

             A. Ordering Info
                  How to get the full game.

             B. Continue Game

             Choosing this option will bring up a listing of save game slots for
             games you have saved along with the game-date. If no games have
been saved or
             if you have not selected your crew to begin your quest these slots
should read
             "Quick Start 2/3784." If this is the case you may either
select one of these
             and use the default crew and ship or you may choose cancel. 
Cancelling will
             bring you back to the Ironseed logo. (Use the Quick Start for Slow
is you have
             less then a 486/33.)

             C. Introduction

                  Choosing this option will run the introduction again.

             D. Quit to Dos

                  Choosing this option will exit the program to the dos

             Part VIII. Main Screen

             The Main Screen is the screen to which you are born and it is the
screen to
             which you must always return.  It is divided up into three main
sections: The
             Primary Display, the InfoBox and the Command Cube.

             The Primary Display is the upper half of the Main Screen.  This is
the area
             through which the world outside your ship can be seen.  You should
be able to
             see the planet or star you are orbiting on the left hand side of
this display.

             The InfoBox occupies the lower left hand side of the Main Screen.
When the
             ship's computer or the crew have an important message for you
it will be appear
             there.  The InfoBox will store the last 24 messages. You may scroll
up and down
             through these messages by using the scroll bar and arrows to the
right of the

             Your ship has three different modes of operation: Rest mode, Alert
mode, and
             Combat mode.  Depending on which of these modes your ship is in
your weapon
             power and shield level will vary.  For quick switch to a different
mode select
             the Panic button from the bottom left of the main screen, doing so
will toggle
             your ship mode (Rest, Alert, and Combat modes turn the Panic Button
             yellow, and red respectively.)  If you are in Rest mode the Panic
Button will
             raise your shields and arm your weapons taking you into Combat
mode.  If you
             are in Combat mode the Panic Button will lower your shields and
power down your
             weapons. If you have no damage you will return to Rest mode.  If
you have taken
             damage you will instead power down to Alert mode.

             As captain of the Ironseed, you directly control the actions of
your six
             primary officers.  These crew members can be accessed through the
six faces of
             the Command Cube found in the lower right corner of the main

             The cube is laid out as follows:
             (Psy) Psychometry             (Sec) Security

             (Eng) Engineering             (Ast) Astrogation

             (Sci) Science                 (Med) Medical

             Keyboard Substitutes:

               Command Cube Manipulation    Other Keys
               _________________________    __________

             Q or F1        W E R              T or F4
             A or F2        S D F              G or F5
             Z or F3        X C V              B or F6

             Alt-Q,Alt-X    Quit
             Spacebar       Clear Right Display
             ESC            Clear All Displays
             Esc=Curved Arrow button=Universal Exit

             Part IX. Secondary Controls

             Some displays will open an icon bar at the top of the main screen. 
For these
             displays, the keyboard equivalents are as follows:

              Position  Key
              ________  __________
                1..4    Arrow Keys
                   5    Space Bar
                   6    1
                   7    2
                   8    3

             For most other screens, Arrows Keys, +, -, 1, 2, 3, Q, W, E, and ?
have some
             effect depending on the operation of the screen.  ESC is the
             cancel/exit key.Part X. Start Hints


             While a complete scan of every planet is not necessary, it is
recommended.  It
             is always better to be thorough to avoid missing anything. In order
to speed
             this process it is best to focus on building a full troupe of
probots.  Once
             you have four the scans can be done two at a time.

             In general it is better to scan for anomalies first.  This way you
can retrieve
             them while the other scans are being completed.  Retrieve all
anomalies you
             find; many of them are useful.  Those that have no immediate use
can be traded

             When sending down probes to a visibly viable world (i.e. lush
green, life
             bearing) you should beware of the inhabitants. Because of the heat
and light
             generated during atmospheric entry, the probes are particularly
             vulnerable to being scanned. From time to time if the populace of a
world is
             technologically advanced they will capture or destroy probes sent
to study

             Because of the intense surface heat suns are not hospitable to
probes.  When
             cooler suns actually have temperatures that fall within the
tolerance range for
             the probe thermashielding, the occasional flare or solar prominence
will finish
             the device. Until advancements can be made in the design of the
             scanning a solar body is not recommended.

             Fuel Economy:

             Conserving fuel in the beginning is crucial.  In order to continue
your travels
             you will need to build more fuel nodules. To avoid scavenging your
probots and
             manufactories for fuel it is essential that you collect as many
anomalies as
             possible before your initial fuel allowance is exhausted.  Previous
deep ship
             captains suggest the closest body travel algorithm.  This
exploration method
             involves travelling to whatever happens to be the nearest system to
you in the
             local star map.  As trite and simplistic as this may seem it tends
to keep fuel
             use low while maximizing the systems visited.

             Research and Design:

             In order for your crew to advance in ability they must expand their
             base through research.  Unfortunately, this requires their time and
often, a
             great deal of their resources.  Yet the benefit of knowledge is
great.  By
             increasing the knowledge base of each crew member you increase the
number and
             variety of items that can be designed and built by the engineer.  
A small
             green light will appear next to the crew member, in the main
screen, by the
             cube whenever he or she is researching.  Because of the enormous
amount of time
             and resource it takes to research, some activities may not be
performed at the
             same time research is conducted.  When such a time arrives the crew
member will
             end his research and continue with the task assigned to them.  It
is important
             to keep those research lights green.  When at all possible your
crew should be


             Upgrading your ship and building new items is the best strategy to
surviving a
             hostile environment.  Spending time to build better offensive,
defensive, and
             other devices is well worth it.  Even Leopold Demasque, military
genius of the
             Final War agreed: Bigger ships and bigger guns = A better chance. 
The only
             draw back of continually upgrading your ship is the amount of time
it takes.
             Some devices, especially the most powerful weapons and shields, are
             complex and require crew members to have a great deal of knowledge.
             amounts of components and materials may also be required to
construct these
             vicious devices. We've come along way since caves and kill
sticks, eh?


             Minebots and manufactories can be left on planets to collect and
process the
             indigenous ores and gases.  After returning to the system, these
devices will
             have filled the planetary cache.  This is a cheap way to gather
much needed
             materials and components.  Scanning the planet beforehand will tell
the type of
             items that can be gathered or created by the bots.


             Trading with other lifeforms is another way to help create that
massive weapon
             or device.  Depending on how you barter you can affect the
congeniality of the
             aliens you encounter.  Because of the size of these empires it may
take a long
             time for news to travel. However, everyone likes a good deal, but
continue to
             cheat in your trades and they will become angered.


             Talking to the crew can help you, the captain, remember your
objective as well
             as helping you to understand your ship and the universe around you.
 The crew
             are privy to a wealth of information and to access that knowledge
you have but
             to ask. Depending on the races you have encountered and the number
of times of
             you have encountered them the crew will have different things to
say about
             each.  Race names are a good starting keyword for questioning. 
Most other
             subjects will arise from those topics.

             Detailed Command Guide


             1 Psych. Evaluation
             2 Ship Hail
             3 Planetary Communication
             4 Crew Status
             5 Psychometric Research
             6 Crew Communication

             1. Psychological Evaluation

             Moving between stars requires your vessel to travel at speeds near
the speed of
             light.  Unfortunately, the amount of force necessary to drive a
ship at those
             speeds grows exponentially the closer one gets to light speed.  In
order to cut
             down on fuel consumption any unnecessary mass was left behind. 
             'unnecessary' mass included the quarter of a million
bodies that made up the

             Not to worry.  The marvels of modern science have made a fine art
             personality containment.  Before the bodies of your crew were
disposed of, the
             magnetic signature of their brains were copied, or encoded, into
the ship's
             computer. This has several interesting side effects.  First of all,
it is
             possible to make adjustments to a person's psychological
attributes.  Multiple
             copies of an 'encode' may also be made.

             The transparent container on the left side of the screen contains
the physical
             manifest of an encode.  When psychological containment was in its
infancy it
             was discovered that for a soul to have permanence it had to have a
             focus.  After hundreds of years of trial and error it a very
specific chemical
             bath was found to contain the proper staying materials to keep a
soul viable.
             The material itself is called Ego Synth, while the chamber into
which it is
             placed is termed the Psychotropic Enhancement Chamber.

             A personality is defined by its biorhythms, the three primary
attributes by
             which any personality encode may be described.  These are mental
             physical viability, and emotional strength.  Selecting evaluate
will allow you
             to see an encode's biorhythmic graph.  The tick marks to the
right of the graph
             show the mental, physical, and emotional ratings for that encode. 
The higher
             the mental rating, the greater that person's Skill; The higher
the physical
             rating, the quicker that person's Performance; The higher the
emotional rating,
             the greater that person's sanity.  While these aren't
equal, they are directly
             related.  The combination of these values determine the resulting
color of the

             Accessing the Encode function near the top left of this screen will
bring up
             the menu for encoding a crew member.  For each crew member there
exists a
             backup chip to which that crew member may be saved.  At times it
may be
             necessary to restore an encode.  The continual psychological drain
of having no
             physical body combined with the rigors of ship duties will erode an
encode.  In
             order to restore a person's sanity it may become necessary to
restore that
             person's encode (hopefully you will have saved the encode at a
point at which
             they were sane.)  The draw back of re-encoding a personality is
that you will
             lose any experience they may have gained between saves.  The other
option is to
             have engineering continually manufacture Mind Enhancers.  While
Mind Enhancers
             will raise their lowest attribute they are expensive to manufacture
and will
             eventually run your cargo dry.  Obviously there is quick solution. 
You must
             maintain a balance between these two.  Encode when the crew is
doing well and
             be sure to manufacture Mind Enhancers when you have spare

             2. Ship Hail

             Ship Hail will allow you to communicate with any nearby ships.  If
no ship is
             present the Com-Screen will be full of static.  All you can do at
this point is
             exit the screen.

             Since the only lifeforms that speak your language are onboard your
ship it is
             essential that you establish some basis of communication.  If there
is a ship
             nearby your psychometrist will attempt to establish a cypher key. 
If the
             aliens cooperate some form of lingual key will transmitted to your
ship and
             talks may begin.  Occasionally a race may have a language so
different from our
             own that an adequate translation matrix is difficult if not
impossible.  If
             this is the case, the ship's computer will do the best it can
with what it has
             to work with.  To communicate with a race with which you have
             contact you simply enter keywords of interest.  The computer will
construct an
             appropriate translation using the cypher key.  Any responses from
the other
             ship will be appropriately translated.

             Another useful function of the Com-Screen is the info bar.  By
selecting this
             button the ship's computer will scan the alien vessel and will
tell you all it
             can about it.

             Let's talk trade

             Nearly every sapient race founded itself on commerce.  Trade
between nearby
             communities harbored a sense of unity and eventually brought whole
             together.  The importance of trade can not be overstated.  Even now
as ships
             pass between stars trade is essential.

             As captain of your ship you will be responsible for conducting
             negotiations.  Be wary of who you deal with.  Bad deals abound.  On
the other
             hand, be sure not to cheat your friends; they'll remember.

             Steps to completing a barter:

             You've just transmitted your intent to trade to the other
ship.  The alien
             craft is silent for a moment and then the message is received,
"Yes... we agree
             to trade with you, filthy human."  What can you expect?
You're new here.
             You're lucky they haven't already destroyed you.

             What type of money will we be buying our exotic wares with?  None.
With empires
             rising and falling like waves on a Thydizian beachfront
there's no reason to
             believe anybody's currency is worth anything at all.
We'll be trading strictly
             in hardware.  What do you have that I want? That'll be the
question of the day.
             Bartering, my friend.  That's how things are done in space.

             1st: Select an item to Buy.

             Scroll through the list on the left of the Message Area until you
             highlighted an item of interest.  To select this item for barter
choose the
             Barter For button (who'd a thought).  This will effectively
say to your alien
             friend, "I want this item."  Selecting Reject will remove
or touching the Exit
             Arrow will deselect the item

             2nd: Choose what you are willing to give in exchange.

             The left hand side of the Message Area should now be the list of
items in your
             cargo hold.  You'll want to choose an item or set of items
that have a net
             worth equivalent to or slightly less than what you are bartering
for.  This
             isn't as complicated as it sounds.  Put simply, if you're
asking for 5 apples
             you don't offer a truck load of oranges in return. 
You'll want to offer
             something worth the same as 5 apples (that is unless you really
don't like

             To add an item to the list, select the Add button from the center
of the
             Message Area.  As you add things to the list you'll notice the
space between
             the Accept and Reject buttons changing colors.  This space is
called the Barter
             Gauge.  This is a simple computerized evaluation of the deal your
about to
             make.  If only part of the bar is full, the aliens want more.  If
the bar is
             green and fully lit, the aliens accept the offer and are willing to
commit to
             the trade.  If the bar is red and fully lit, the aliens are
ecstatic and you
             have offered them entirely too much.

             In the event that your Barter Gauge goes red you'll probably
be wanting to
             subtract a few items from the list.  To do this you should
highlight the item
             you wish removed from the list.  Once you've done that select
the Remove button
             and the item will be returned to your cargo list.

             It is important to note that the more difficult something is to
manufacture the
             more it is worth.  Complex devices like shields and weapons are
             substantially more than the basic elements that comprise them.

             3rd:  Accepting an offer.

             Once you've completed the bartering process you'll be
wanting to complete the
             deal by swapping the materials you selected.  To do this you should
select the
             Accept button from the right side of the Message Area.  If the deal
             acceptable to your alien friends they will send a cargo pod to your
vessel and
             the trade will be complete.  If they don't like the deal
you're making they
             will simply do nothing.  In theory they are waiting for you to
regain your
             sanity... thinking that your poor decision making skills are the
result of
             short term brain damage.

             4th: Ok. Ok.  How do you exit a sale before it's too late?!

             If you want to deselect an item before a sale is made choose the
Reject button.
             If you're paranoid and you want to exit Trade completely,
select the Exit Arrow
             from the right side of the screen.

             5th: I've made a sale but I changed my mind.

             Indian giver!  You gave your word.  You made the sale... Now you
want your
             stuff back?!  If you're peaceful you'll just get over it.
 If you're a
             warmonger you'll fight them and hopefully recover the stuff
from their burnt
             out hulls.  In either case you screwed up.  Making a deal is
concrete.  You
             need to be sure you want to sell something before you say accept.

             6th: I'm done trading

             If you're done trading select the Exit Arrow.  This will
return you to the
             conversion.  From this point you may continue to converse with your

             One man's junk is another man's treasure

             Despite public opinion Worthless Junk actually has a value, however
             Since technologies from race to race vary widely it is often
possible to get
             away with giving garbage in exchange for valuable material.  While
no race will
             immediately refuse a wad of slag (hey, they don't know what it
is) they will
             eventually catch on to what is and isn't junk.  Continued use
of Worthless Junk
             as a bartering tool is not suggested.

             3. Planetary Communication

             This function is identical to Ship Hail function expect it deals
with lifeforms
             on the planet you are orbiting.

             4. Crew Status

             Crew descriptions, experience levels, and experience points may be
viewed in
             this area.  You can scroll through the crew by using the arrow

             5. Psychometric Research

             This toggles your Psychometry officer's research status.
Researching will
             increase their knowledge base, or experience points. Do this
whenever possible.

             6. Crew Communication

             Talking to the crew can help you, the captain, remember your
objective as well
             as helping you to understand your ship and the universe around you.
 The crew
             are privy to a wealth of information and to access that knowledge
you have but
             to ask. Depending on the races you have encountered and the number
of times of
             you have encountered them the crew will have different things to
say about
             each.  Race names are a good starting keyword for questioning. 
Most other
             subjects will arise from those topics.

             Once you are in this area you have but to select the crew member
you want to
             talk to.  Their storage light will turn red and their image will
appear in the
             center of the screen.  You may then enter keywords of interest.  To
speak to
             another crew member just select the one you wish to address.


             1 Damage Control
             2 Shield Status
             3 Weapon Status
             4 Weapon Config.
             5 Computer Logs
             6 Engineering Rsrch.
             7 Bot Control
             8 Component Creation
             9 Cargo Inventory

             1. Damage Control

             No system is infallible.  Things wear out; they break down.  If
             particularly agressive things may even get blown up.  In any case,
you're going
             to want to repair the damage.  Dealing with damage is done through
this cube

             When accessed, the engineering team listing should appear on the
right side of
             the Primary Display.  Above this you should also appear a control
bar with 8
             buttons.  Of these pay attention to the three labeled Team 1, Team
2, and Team
             3.  These three will take you to the list of ship systems.  To the
right of
             this list are the respective damage values for each system.  If all
values are
             zero everything is fine, throw yourself a party.  More often than
not these
             won't be zero. In that event you'll want to set your
engineering teams to work.

             To begin repair on a damaged system it's a simple matter of
selecting the team
             from the menu at the top and then choosing a damaged system from
the list.  If
             a team is occupied with another task (constructing a device,
researching an
             artifact) that team number will be to the left of OTHER. This is at
the bottom
             of the list.  Once you have given your orders you can clear this
menu by
             selecting CLS from the button bar at the top of the screen.

             2. Shield Status

             Since the time of the first war man has had to fashion tools of
death.  Against
             these tools man has had to defend himself with shields, however
crude.  While
             shields are no longer fashioned from bone and skins they still
exist in one
             form or another.

             This function allows you to install a shield or to adjust the power
levels of 
             your current shield.  When activated a shield menu should appear on
             right side of the Primary Display. At the top of this display
should be the
             name of the active shield and immediately below that should be the
             of shield damage.

             You should also see three gauges showing the power levels for the
             alert modes.  The first of these is the REST mode, the second is
the ALERT mode
             and the third is COMBAT mode (for more info on ship modes see Main
             controls.)  Clicking on the gauge will set the power level for that
             ship mode.

             Clicking on the shield icon in the button bar above the shield menu
will change
             the shield menu to the shield description and installation menu. 
Below the
             active shield name you should see a list of four attributes: Sys.
Damage, Max.
             Energy, Protection, and Cargo Size.

             System Damage is a redundant.  It has the same meaning as in the
main shield
             menu display.

             Maximum Energy is the amount of Energy the shield will require when
at maximum
             power.  With the most powerful shields it is a good idea not to
leave the
             shield very high as it will tend to drain large amount of power
from the
             auxiliary power supply.

             Protection is the total number of damage points a shield can
deflect before
             damage is taken by the ship itself.  The bigger the better.  It is
important to
             note that the total number of shield points will be split among the
             damage types.  The damage types and how the percentages affect the
             absorption can be seen below.

             Cargo Size is, as it suggests, the number of cubic meters the
shield occupies
             when uninstalled.

             Below all this on the shield menu you should see the picture of the
             device next two four bar graphs.  These graphs represent the
             breakdowns for each damage type.  The damage types are as follows:

             (P) Psionic Damage affects the viability of the personality
             matrices.  Life support will be the first thing to go if the ship
takes a major
             hit from a psionic weapon.  The same can be said for your

             (P) Particle Damage is taken from cannons which fire particle
streams, whether
             it be electron, proton, or neutron based.  Particle Damage can also
be the
             result of some device which corrupts the make up of matter itself. 
While the
             latter is often more destructive a good shield can still take the
brunt of the

             (I) Inertial Damage is the result of an explosive weapon.  Missles
or weapons
             of an explosive nature will result in Inertial Damage.
Retroexplosive hull
             coatings and advanced kinetodispersive barriers render such

             (E) Energy Damage is taken from energy bolt weapons such as the
whip. Weapons
             such as these seek to fry the components of enemy computer systems.
 While this
             is all fine and good if it is the other guy you won't want it
happening to you.
             If at all possible have a shield with at least a nominal amount of
             Damage protection.

             From this area you may also install another shield.  If a shield
other than the
             reflective hull is installed you will have to uninstall the current
             before installing a new one.

             Uninstalling Shields

             When in the secondary shield menu you should see a plug-and-outlet
icon in the
             button bar.  Clicking on the plug in the out position will allow
you to
             'unplug' your current shield.

             Installing Shields

             Once you have no active shield you can continue by clicking on the
             plug-in-the-socket in the button bar. This will allow you to pick
the shield
             from those in your cargo that you wish to install.

             3. Weapon Status

             When this function is first activated a list will appear on the
right hand side
             of the Primary Display.  This list will contain all of the weapons
that are
             currently installed on your ship.  Clicking the right arrow will
show you a
             breakdown of the weapon selected and, to scroll through the list
while in this
             mode, click up or down.  The values given for each weapon are
identical in
             meaning to those given for shields except for Damage.  It is
obvious that this
             value represents the amount of damage inflicted to the enemy
instead of the
             damage shielded.

             4. Weapon Configuration

             Selecting this function will bring up a layout of your ship's
gun nodes.  This
             is the Weapon Configuration menu and should fill the majority of
the Primary
             Display.  From this area you may install or remove weapons from
your ship's

             Installing a weapon

             Start by selecting a gun node without a weapon already installed in
it. (Gun
             nodes are the locations along your ship hull at which a weapon may
be placed.)
             An empty node will appear as an black grey square on the Weapon
             menu.  Select one of these nodes.  A selected node will have a red
border along
             its edge.

             After you have an empty node selected you should select the plug-
             icon from the button bar above the Weapon Configuration menu.  This
will take
             you to a list of weapons available in your cargo hold.  You will
begin the game
             with no weapons installed.  Fortunately you have a Dirk in your
cargo hold.  It
             would be a good idea to install it as soon as possible.

             Later in the game (hopefully) you will have constructed other
weapons.  These
             will appear in the list at the left.  The right side of the display
             provide you with a breakdown of the highlighted weapon (see Weapon

             Once the item you want installed is highlighted, you may proceed
with the
             installation by again selecting the plug-in-socket icon from the
button bar.

             Removing a weapon

             Perhaps you want to remove a weapon from your hull so that you can
put another
             in its place, perhaps keeping the engineering teams busy amuses
you, or perhaps
             your encode has lost integrity and you've gone mad...
regardless of your
             reasoning you've decided that you want to remove a weapon.

             Select the weapon you want to remove from those shown in the
             Configuration menu.  To remove the selected weapon choose the
             plug-out-of-socket icon from the button bar.  You will be asked if
you want to
             proceed with the removal.  Better have a good reason to be removing
             weapon.  If it's your only one you'll have a lot of
explaining to do to the
             crew.  You never know when you'll be attacked, or by whom. 
(For mindless
             violence see Battle)

             5. Computer Logs

             As the captain, you make a note to enter into this virtual logbook
all the
             events of potential interest.  This command will take you to a list
of these
             entries.  Clicking on an entry title will begin Query Mode which
allows you to
             read the associated file.  To get back to the log entry list when
in this mode
             simply toggle Query Mode off by selecting the question mark near
the top right
             of the screen.  To scroll through the list of entries while in
Query Mode use
             the arrow keys on the screen.

             6. Engineering Research

             This toggles your Engineering officer's research status.
Researching will
             increase their knowledge base, or experience points. Do this
whenever possible.

             7. Bot Control

             Any items in the planetary cache may be retrieved through this
function.  By
             choosing the out-of-the-box-arrow in the button bar above this
menu, any
             highlighted items will be retrieved by a probot.  You may also send
items to
             the planet's surface by clicking on the into-the-box- arrow in
the button bar.
             This will bring up your cargo list.  Highlight the item you want to
send down
             and choose the into-the-box-arrow a second time.  This will send a
probot down
             with the item.

             Placing Bots

             To send down a minebot or manufactory to process materials for
later retrieval,
             merely click on the Bot icon at the far right of the button bar. 
Due to the
             difficulty of processing foreign ores and working in hostile alien
             it will take a minimum of one full cycle before any ores or
materials can be
             processed.  In general you will have to leave a system and return
to it before
             your bot will show progress.  Once the planetary cache is full the
bots on that
             planet will produce no more materials.  It will be necessary to
remove those
             items before production can continue.

             Retrieving Bots

             When you first enter the Bot Menu click on the bot icon on the far
right of the
             button bar.  This will allow you to retrieve any bots that you have
placed on
             the surface below.

             8. Component Creation (Big guns... BIG guns... BIG &#@

             "Screw diplomacy! I wanna kill something!"

             While this is a common saying it is a hollow statement unless
you've got the
             guns to back your agression obsession.  In order to build that
awesome arsenal
             you'll have to start here, in the Component Creation screen.

             The best way to learn how to use this interface is to actually use

             A Brief Walk Through

             Let's say you've just begun your mission.  For some
strange reason you think it
             is vital that engineering analyze the components of a weapon in
your cargo
             hold.  In fact, it's the only weapon in your cargo hold
(perhaps that's why you
             think it vital to analyze it.)

             Regardless of your reasoning, the first step in decomposing a
device is
             selecting the Decomposing button from the top left of the
interface. The light
             next to that button should change to green, indicating that you are
now in
             Decompose Mode.  Below that button you should now see a list of
items colored
             bright white.  These are the items in your cargo hold that you can
             The weapon that we are looking for is the Dirk.  Select it from the
list using
             your pointer.

             Once it has been highlighted you should see it listed under Current
Project on
             the far right of the screen.  At the top of this screen you should
see the Item
             Status area.  This area provides you with a readout of any shield
or weapon
             selected (for more info on this function see Weapon Status and
Shield Status.)

             We wanted to analyze the Dirk.  A brief description of its function
is given at
             the bottom left of the screen.  The description of any item
selected can be
             found in this area.  If you want to disable this feature you can
toggle Query
             Mode off by selecting the question mark button at the top left.  If
the light
             is red Query Mode is off.  Go ahead and click it again.  We'll
want that light
             green so we'll know the descriptions of what we are

             Now we have a description of the Dirk, but we don't know what
it's made of.
             When an item is selected the three parts which comprise it are
given to the
             immediate left of Current Project.  If Dirk is still selected we
should see the
             three parts: StrataMount, Ion Cache, and Flux Lens. If we wanted
to, we could
             proceed with disassembling the Dirk.

             Disassembling/Decomposing Items

             Under Assign/Inspect Teams we can choose an engineering team to do
the work.
             If a team has a red light next to them they are busy.  You can
Inspect the work
             of a busy team by selecting that team with the pointer. Their task
             appear beneath Current Project.  Make sure you are in Decompose
mode by
             checking the light next to that button; it should be green.  Next,
select a
             free engineering team.  The item will vanish from your cargo as
             engineering teams pull it out to take it apart. To check the
progress of your
             team you can click on them again (make sure they are busy before
you select
             them; selecting a free team will put that team to work decomposing
             else you highlighted!)  As a team progresses you will see the green
bar grow
             beneath the item in Current Project.  When this bar reaches the
full length of
             the box the task will be completed.  Rejoice! You've just
decomposed you're
             only weapon.

             The crew is beginning to think you've gone quite mad. 
You've just taken apart
             the only weapon you had on board.  It would be a good idea to put
that weapon
             back together before they erase you (see Assembling/Integrating
Items.)  It's a
             pity that when you first start the mission your crew lacks the
ability to build
             Dirks (i.e. You can't put it back together again once
it's disassembled.  If
             you were foolish enough to actually take it apart and you really
can't put it
             back together just restore the game.)

             Once the item is completely decomposed you'll want to go back
into Integration
             Mode.  Check the light next to the Integrate button.  Is it green?
Make it so.
             A list of items you can manufacture will appear below.  As your
             knowledge base increases so will your ability to create bigger and
             armaments.  In the beginning that list is fairly small but each
time a crew
             member increases his or her knowledge base it is a good idea to
check the list
             again... you never know what the crew will design next.

             I don't know nuffin' bout' no devices... what's

             Regardless of the creation mode you are in you can color code the
cargo list in
             the Component Creation screen by selecting the Clr Code button
beneath the
             cargo list.  All items fall into three classes: Materials,
Components, and
             Devices.  When the Clr Code status light is green the items in the
list above
             it will be color coded as follows:

             Materials: Brown
             Components: Light Blue
             Devices: Blue

             -Materials are processed from raw ores and minerals from a planets
             This can be done by dropping a minebot.

             -Components are processed from materials.  They are more complex
than materials
             but still serve no direct purpose.  These can be created by
dropping a
             manufactory to a planet's surface.

             -Devices are made up of components and, sometimes, other devices.
             include shields, weapons and ship upgrades.

             For every item that exists it requires three primary components to
             it.  Here is a brief list of devices and components that you can
             construct as well as the complete list of materials.

             Weapons   PART #1        PART #2        PART#3       Relative Worth
             Dirk      StrataMount    Ion Cache      Flux Lens      58   1  2  2
 3  2  1
             Scimitar  Dirk           Solonoid       Ion Cache      98   1  2  3
 4  3  2
             Broadswor Scimitar       Scimitar       StrataMount    218  2  2  4
 4  4  2
             Claymore  Broadsword     Steoplast      Plasm Inverter 271  3  2  4
 5  4  3
             Blackjack Solonoid       Flux Lens      Pulse Loom     58   2  2  4
 3  3  2
             Whip      Blackjack      Ion Cache      Flux Lens      98   2  3  4
 4  4  3
             Short Bow Solonoid       Solonoid       Vac-Feeder     71   2  2  3
 5  4  1
             Long Bow  Short Bow      Guidance Strut Duct Battery   111  3  2  4
 5  5  2
             Light Rai Disei Conduit  Steoplast      Vac-Feeder     97   4  3  4
 4  5  3

             ReflectHu Steoplast      Steoplast      Polymers       73   1  1  3
 3  3  1
             Quart. Sh Solonoid       Solonoid       Plasm Inverter 60   2  1  5
 5  5  1

             Misc. Devices
             Probot    Data Board     Duct Battery    StrataMount   58   1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Minebot   Probot         Cyberplasm      Masking Pod   111  3  1  2
 3  2  3
             Manufacto Minebot        Disei Conduit   Mulroid       164  1  2  1
 2  3  1
             Fuel Nodu Radioactives   Strange Particl Heavy Element 15   1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Reinforce Torque Stanchi Metal Weave     Guidance Stru 84   2  2  2
 2  2  2
             Inc. Thru Dirk           Dirk            Pulse Loom    138  2  2  2
 2  2  2
             Add Cargo Guidance Strut StrataMount     Torque Stanch 84   2  2  2
 2  2  2
             Ins. Gun  Stasis Generat Stasis Generato Thynne Vortex 563  4  4  4
 4  4  4
             Mind Enha Proto-Nutrient Cyberplasm      Biosynth      71   1  1  1
 1  1  1

             Solonoid  Magnetics      Coolants        Heavy Ions    18   1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Data Boar Ceramics       Liquid Gases    Coolants      18   1  1  1
 1  1  1
             CyberPlas Organics       Medicants       Electrolytes  18   3  1  2
 3  2  3
             Disei Con Flux Lens      Solvents        Electrolytes  31   3  1  2
 3  3  3
             SteoPlast Metal Weave    Heavy Ions      Polymers      31   2  1  2
 2  2  2
             Flux Lens Crystals       Magnetics       Polymers      18   2  1  3
 2  2  2
             Metal Wea Conductants    Radioactives    Ceramics      18   2  1  2
 2  3  2
             Pulse Loo Polymers       Alien Compounds Radioactives  18   2  1  2
 3  2  4
             Biosynth  Organics       Proto-Nutrient  Protoplasm    31   4  1  2
 4  4  2
             Plasm Inv Crystals       Electrolytes    Alien Isotope 18   3  1  3
 2  1  2
             Grav-Coup Pulse Loom     Radioactives    Strange Parti 31   2  2  3
 3  2  2
             Torque St StrataMount    Guidance Strut  Ceramics      44   2  2  2
 3  2  2
             Vac-Feede Heavy Ions     Oxidants        Solonoid      31   2  2  3
 2  3  2
             Mulroid   Esper Seeds    Coolants        Alien Isotope 18   4  1  1
 3  1  4
             Proto-Nut Protoplasm     Organics        Medicants     18   4  1  2
 4  4  2
             Duct Batt Conductants    Magnetics       Ceramics      18   2  1  3
 2  2  1
             Masking P Flux Lens      Crystals        Polymers      31   3  3  5
 3  2  1
             Guidance  Heavy Ions     Conductants     Magnetics     18   1  2  2
 2  3  1
             StrataMou Heavy Ions     Solvents        Magnetics     18   1  3  2
 2  2  1
             Ion Cache Polymers       Magnetics       Liquid Gases  18   3  2  3
 3  3  2

             Protoplas Amino Acid     Carboxylic acid Amine         5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Polymers  Alkene         Alkene          Industrial Ch 5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Crystals  Lensing Solid  Lensing Solid   Strong Acid   5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Oxidants  Base           Transition Meta Protic liquid 5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Esper See Lensing Solid  Heavy Element   Industrial Ch 5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Heavy Ion Transition Met Transition Meta Strong Acid   5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Coolants  Halogens/Noble Ether           Aldehydes/Ket 5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Solvents  Strong Acid    Strong Acid     Strong Acid   5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Electroly Base           Base            Strong Acid   5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Organics  Amino Acid     Amino Acid      Amine         5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Alien Iso Heavy Element  Transition Meta Lensing Solid 5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Conductan Halogens/Noble Transition Meta Alkyne        5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Magnetics Industrial Che Transition Meta Heavy Element 5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Radioacti Heavy Element  Heavy Element   Industrial Ch 5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Liquid Ga Halogens/Noble Halogens/Noble  Aldehydes/Ket 5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Medicants Amino Acid     Volatile compou Alkyne        5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Ceramics  Industrial Che Transition Meta Lensing Solid 5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Alien Com Heavy Element  Heavy Element   Amino Acid    5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Strange P Heavy Element  Heavy Element   Transition Me 5    1  1  1
 1  1  1
             Worthless Worthless Junk Worthless Junk  Worthless Jun 1    1  1  1
 1  1  1

             Assembling/Integrating Items

             Once you are in Integrate Mode you can choose from the item list
something that
             you would like to create.  While you may highlight anything you
like from the
             list, you may only manufacture those items which are bright white. 
When you
             have highlighted an item it will appear beneath Current Project. 
The three
             parts that comprise that item are to the left of that.  If an item
is listed as
             red you do not have it.  If it is green you do have it.  If all
three items
             that comprise it are green, rejoice!  You can create that item if
you wish!  To
             create an item that is selected (and for which you have the parts)
select a
             free engineering team and go to work.

             9. Cargo Inventory

             In the center of this screen is the Cargo Door which opens
immediately after
             this function is accessed.  To view only certain cargo types you
may filter out
             those you don't wish to see by clicking on the box of the
appropriate cargo
             type.  To bring those items back into the viewed list just click
that same
             cargo type name.

             Jettisoning Cargo.

             Choosing the arrow-and-box icon will allow you jettison any
unwanted cargo.
             This may become necessary from time to time if you have accumulated
a large
             number of bulky items.  An alternative this may be decomposing that
bulky item.
             Unfortunately, if the cargo hold is full of these items it may be
impossible to
             decompose that item without losing some of the components.  In
general it is a
             good idea to keep a close track on your space used and your cargo
             allowance.  No one wants throw anything away, especially if
it's a valuable

             Printouts of the Cargo Manifest

             The chief function of this screen is the control pad to the right
of the Cargo
             Door.  If a printer is connected to your computer you may print out
a complete
             breakdown of your cargo manifest.  This list includes material,
component, and
             device categorizations as well as space allowance in cubic meters.


             1 Short Range Scans
             2 Long Range Scans
             3 System Layout
             4 Planetary Scans
             5 Science Research
             6 Star Log

             1. Short Range Scans

             Short Range Scans provide you with a scan of all space within 8M
km.  Incoming
             ships will set the scanners red when they come within 3M km.  This
scan should
             appear in the left side of the Primary Display with a scanning
circle radius
             growing and shrinking as cyclic scans are completed.

             2. Long Range Scans

             Long Range Scans appear on the left side of the Primary Display.
These scans
             are much less intensive but cover a much greater area. Ambient
signals appear
             in the upper rectangle.  When a salient signal appears as the
result of an
             alien ship you will see an unmoving blip. Proximity to solar bodies
may obscure
             this blip with static.  If you are near to a sun it is better to
rely on short
             range scans as they are much more reliable.  The maximum scan
distance for the
             long range scanner sweeps is 20M km.

             3. System Layout

             This function causes the active system map to fill the Primary
Display.  It is
             from the system map that you may choose the other planets in the
system you
             wish to travel to.  Basic information such as the number of visits,
and the
             number of bots on the surface of a world can be displayed by
selecting the Star
             Log icon from the button bar above the System Layout map (the
second from the
             right.)  To stop the System Layout rotation select the Halt button
to the right
             of the Star Log icon.

             4. Planetary Scans

             In the center of this screen a flat map of the planet should
appear. To the
             left of the planet layout should be five buttons, each labeled with
             different types of scans your probots may perform.

             (Land) Lithospheric Scans
             (Sea) Hydrospheric Scans
             (Air) Atmospheric Scans

             These scans are particularly useful when determining what materials
could be
             processed from a planet.  You'll want to perform these scans
if you are looking
             to drop a minebot or manufactory.

             (Life) Biospheric Scans

             This type of scan is useful when you want to know the specifics of
             lifeforms on a planet.  This is the only way to determine the type
             TechLevel of intelligent lifeforms when they are encountered planet

             Tech Levels:
             0.1-1.0        Developing Primitive Social Schemas
             1.1-2.0        Early Imperialism
             2.1-3.0        Industrialization
             3.1-4.0        Global Networking
             4.1-5.0        Extraplanetary Imperialism
             5.1-6.0        Intersteller Imperialism
             6.1-7.0        Multidimensional Travel
             7.1-8.0        Psychoportation and Mass/Energy Matriculation

             (Anom) Anomaly Scans

             If you have only time for one scan this would be the one to
perform. This scan
             will search for any materials, components, or artifacts immediately
             on the planet's surface.  Points of green light will appear on
the surface
             where anomalies occur (if they occur.)  To retrieve these items you
will have
             to tell the probots where to return to.  You will have to zoom into
the area
             using the sky-cam.  Select '+' twice for a full zoom,
then select the area on
             the map where the anomaly occurred.  If red messages appear in the
zoom screen
             you are properly centered on the item.  If the red dot is on the
zoom screen
             but red messages don't appear, you aren't properly
centered.  Fine tune your
             position by using the arrow keys.  Once you are centered on the
item and the
             red messages appear, select the retrieve button from the bottom
right of the
             screen.  In an instant the item will have been acquired.

             General Scan Info

             It requires only two probes to perform any complete scan.  To
initiate another
             scan just select the scan you want to perform.

             As each scan is completed relevant information will appear in the
Info Box at
             the bottom left.  To scan through these lists choose the Prv or Nxt
buttons to
             the right of the Info Box.  To get back to the scan status list
select the
             button between Prv and Nxt.

             When all five scans are completed a full planetary description will
             where the planet layout was.  This description will tell you all
there is to
             know about that planet.

             Planetary Evolution

               State                       Time Frame (yrs)    Tech Level
             0 Gaseous
               a. Nebula                    1 Billion           No Life
               b. Gas Giant                 1 Billion           No Life
               c. Heavy Atmosphere         500 M                No Life
             1 Active
               a. Volcanic                 500 M            Simple Proteins
               b. Semi-Vol.                400 M          Single Celled Plants
               c. Land Formation           300 M         Single Celled Animals
             2 Stable
               a. Land & Water             200 M             Vascular
               b. Slight Veg.              150 M          Multicelled Animals
               c. Med. Veg.                150 M                  0
             3 Ea. Life
               a. Heavy Veg.                15 M                  0
               b. Med. Veg.                10000                  1
               c. Med. Veg.                 8000                  2
             4 Adv. Life
               a. Med. Veg.                 4000                  3
               b. Slight Veg.               2000                  4
               c. No vegetation             4000                  5
             5 Dying
               a. Ruins                     3000               No Life
               b. Med. Veg.                 8000               No Life
               c. Dead Rock                  ?                 No Life
             6 Dead
               a. Radiation               200000               No Life
               b. Astoroid                   ?                 No Life
               c. Null                       ?                 No Life
             7 Star
               a. Yellow                     X                 No Life
               b. Red                        X                 No Life
               c. White                      X                 No Life

             In addition several other changes may take place:
                                           5b to 2c
                                           2c to 5c
                                           3a to 5b

             All planets have the potential to change state or mode to the next
one in the
             list.  Years over a certain amount are broken down into smaller
time frames
             with a random chance of occuring.  Ie. 100 M into 1000 x 100000
with a 1 in
             1000 chance every 100000 yrs.  Game time is actually accelerated to
induce more
             changes to the system.  A planet changing state or mode destroys
             probots/minebots, cache, and info collected on the planet.

             You can get back to the planet view by selecting Anom from the
buttons on the

             5. Science Research

             This toggles your Science officer's research status. 
Researching will increase
             their knowledge base, or experience points.  Do this whenever

             6. Star Logs

             Selecting the Star Log icon will activate the Star Logs info menu.
This menu
             should appear in the right side of the Primary Display.  The
highest level of
             the menu is the star system names list.  Moving to the right
through this
             display will take you to the more specific levels of data Those
levels are as

             System Names
              System Info
               Planet Orbit
                Planet Info

             Scrolling up and down in any of these modes will take you to the
             stars or planets in that particular list.  To return in the list to
the system
             you are currently in select the Home icon from the button bar above
the Star
             Log info menu.  Selecting the System Layout icon from the button
bar will take
             you immediately to the Planet Info level of the Star Log info


             1 Raise Shields
             2 Arm Weapons
             3 Evade Enemy
             4 Mask Ship
             5 Security Research
             6 Attack Enemy

             1. Raise Shields

             Raising Shields will take the ship into Combat Mode and will power
your shield
             to the Combat shield level.  As with weapons powering your shields
             initially use a great deal of auxiliary power but if your enemy is
quick it may
             be necessary to go in protected from the beginning.

             Selecting Raise Shields again will lower the shields.  This will
drop you into
             Alert Mode if the weapons are not armed or you will stay in Combat
mode if the
             weapons are still armed.

             2. Arm Weapons

             Arm Weapons will take the ship into Combat Mode and will fully
power all
             installed weapons.  While this may drain a significant portion of
             auxiliary power it may be good idea to have weapons powered before
you begin an
             important battle.  Waiting for your weapons to power while the
enemy draws near
             is not fun.

             3. Evade Enemy

             Evade Enemy will have your flight engineers attempt to do just
that. If it is
             possible to escape an alien ship this command will allow you to get
out of
             their scan range.

             4. Mask Ship

             The Mask Ship command will order engineering to mask all emissions
from the
             ship in an attempt to make the ship 'invisible'  While
the ship is not truly
             cloaked it is certainly difficult to scan and almost impossible to
track when
             in this mode.  Enemies will usually drift away when you are in this

             5. Security Research

             This toggles your Security officer's research status. 
Researching will
             increase their knowledge base, or experience points.  Do this

             6. Attack Enemy

             Attack Enemy will order the ship toward whatever enemy vessels are
nearest you
             and will proceed to engage them in battle.


             There are a lot of buttons. Complex commands scare me.  Not to
worry. As
             always, the commands for your ship are easier than they appear.

             We've got Battle Display, TargetBox, Weapon Configuration, and
Status Bars.

             Battle Display

             The Battle Display is filled with a dark starfield.  You are at the
center of
             it and are surrounded by the scan perimeter which appears as a
pulsing blue

             The Battle Plane

             The Battle Plane is the plane that your ship flies in.  The Battle
Plane is
             always stationary relative to you.  The movements and positions of
             vessels will be tracked in relation to this Battle Plane.  Ships
will appear as
             white points while their projections on the plane will appear as
dark red dots.
             For clarity a shadow line is drawn between the ship and its
projection.  In
             other words, the longer the shadow line the higher/lower that ship
is from your
             plane of flight.


             The ThrustPad controls your movement through the BattlePlane.  The
             controls are straight forward (up arrow=forward, down
             arrow=backward, etc.)


             The TargetBox is in the lower left quarter of the battle screen.
This display
             will tell you all you need to know about alien ships.  When you
enter battle
             the TargetBox will be in Data Mode.


             The Alt button at the bottom of the battle screen will toggle the
             between Data Mode and Visual Mode.

             Data Mode:

             What this means is that when ships are targeted on the Battle
Display bar
             graphs of that ship's power levels and system damages will
appear here.  These
             graphs appear in the following order (from left to right).

             (DMG) Hull Damage
             (LIF) Life
             (PWR) Power
             (SHD) Shield

             (P) Power
             (S) Shield
             (W) Weapons
             (E) Engines
             (L) Life Support
             (C) Communications
             (C) CPU

             These values are the same as those on your own ship all are
explained in
             greater detail below (see Primary and Auxiliary Status Bars).

             Visual Mode:

             When the TargetBox is in Visual Mode you will see a vid clip of the
             vessel at the left of the TargetBox.  Above that should be other
             about the ship.  From top to bottom that list is as follows:


             The race indicator will tell you which alien empire you're
clashing horns with.

             Ship Type (and ship index)

             Depending on the estimated weaponry and hull strength the
ship's computer will
             attempt to classify alien vessels in one of 15 categories (in order
of least to

                  Assault Scout
                  Patrol Craft
                  Lt. Destroyer
                  Hv. Destroyer
                  Lt. Cruiser
                  Hv. Cruiser
                  Battle Cruiser

             The ship index (the letter that follows a ship's type)
distinguishes between
             the different ships as they approach you.  Each ship has a
different index
             letter.  The index for a ship will stay constant throughout a


             This is the targeted ship's distance from your ship in
thousands of Kilometers
             (k km).

             Tech Level

             This is the estimated Tech Level of the targeted ship (see Science
Planet Scan
             for list of Tech Levels).

             (Accel) Acceleration

             This is a rating of how many units of velocity may be accumulated
per second by
             the targeted vessel.

             (Prev) Previous/Next

             Selecting Next will move the TargetBox through the index list of
             Previous will move you in the opposite direction through the list. 
These may
             become useful when the enemy is tightly clumped making directly
selecting them
             from the Battle Display difficult.

             Weapon Configuration

             This is the bottom middle of the battle screen.  In this Area you
should see
             your gun nodes and the weapons installed in them.  Next to each
weapon should
             be a green light.  This light is the Power Light for that weapon.

             PowerUp Sequence

             Each time a weapon is fired the system checks to see if the Power
Light is
             active for that weapon.  If the light is green and sufficient power
             available in the battery that weapon will begin powering.  If the
light is red
             after the weapon is fired that weapon will not begin to power until
the light
             is again green.

             After long battles when your batteries are low it may become
necessary to
             remove power hungry weapons from the PowerUp Sequence.  This leaves
             batteries free to power less powerful weapons which can fire more
             Ultimately, what weapons are left in the PowerUp Sequence is up to
you.  Too
             many weapon configurations exist to explain the best technique for
each.  The
             best suggestion is to experiment with the Power Lights until you
are familiar
             with the best setup for your ship.

             Firing a weapon

             Once power from the battery is allocated to a weapon it will begin
to power.
             This will turn the border of the weapon icon from dark red to
bright read then
             into dark green and eventually to bright green.  If the targeted
vessel located
             in the TargetBox is also within range of a fully powered weapon the
border for
             that weapon will turn blue.  If Active Fire is disabled you must
click on the
             weapon before it will fire. Active Fire is explained below.

             Active Fire

             The cross-hair icon is responsible for toggling Active Fire and is
located to
             the right of the Weapon Configuration Area beneath the word
"Active."  The
             Active Fire status bar is above the Weapon Configuration Area.  
When Active
             Fire is enabled the Active Fire status bar should be red.  While
this function
             is active all powered weapons within range of a targeted enemy will
fire.  For
             ease of play this feature is often enabled and left on for the rest
of the

             Active Scanner

             In order to increase the accuracy of the weapons when engaging an
enemy it is
             possible to initiate an active scan of the ships you target.  The
             Scanner toggle button is immediately to the right of  the Active
Fire toggle
             button.  When enabled the Active Scanner status bar beneath the
             Configuration Area should be red.  This function will increase your
             accuracy by 20%.  Unfortunately, all those high energy ship scans
have a cost.
             In order to pinpoint a ship you have to reveal your own position. 
             subsequently increases the enemy's hit accuracy by 20%.  This
is most useful
             when you've armed yourself with long range weapons or when the
enemy is weakly

             Primary Status Bars

             The three red bars on the right hand side of the battle screen are
the Primary
             Status Bars.  These keep you aware of your ship's most crucial
system levels
             and damages.  Those three, from right to left, are as follows.

             Shield Control

             Clicking on this bar will adjust the shield level of your ship. 
The higher you
             go on the bar the greater the allotted shield power will be. Notice
the tick
             marker that appears near the top and to the right of the Shield
Control bar.
             The height of this marker is the maximum power value the shield may
assume.  As
             your shield system takes more damage this marker will move down.  A
             shield will continue to draw energy from your battery.  For this
reason, it is
             a good idea to keep the shield on zero power unless you are in

             Ground State Pulse Effect

             When your batteries have been exhausted and your shields are still
powered you
             may experience a Ground State Pulse (GSP).  Your shield power will
             madly as a result.  The reason for this lies behind the physics
which drive
             your ship.  The matter converters in the ship's drive core are
step generators.
             They produce discrete packets of energy that the power buffers to
the auxiliary
             storage batteries convert to continuous power.  This is analogous
to the
             difference between digital power and analog power.  When the
battery is
             exhausted the shield begins effectively feeding from the step
generators.  The
             resulting field instability can cause damage to the shield
generator itself.
             The chance is small but leaving a shield in a GSP is not

             Auxiliary Power

             The second red status bar is the Auxiliary Power level.  This
represents the
             amount of power available in your batteries.  For this gauge the
height of the
             tick marker to the right of it is the maximum power the battery may
store.  As
             you take damage to this system the marker will move down reducing
the amount of
             storable power.  Keep an eye on this gauge.  When it starts getting
low you'll
             want adjust your shield level to avoid a GSP (see Ground State
Pulse Effect).

             Hull Damage

             The Hull Damage is self explanatory.  When this gauge reaches zero
game over,
             adios, ciao, do not pass go, do not collect $200.

             Auxiliary Status Bars

             The Auxiliary Status Bars are located at the bottom right side of
the battle
             screen.  These status bars give you a read out of your ship systems
and their
             associated damage levels.  A list of these and the effects of
damage are given
             below.  From top to bottom they are as follows:


             Power system damage will reduce the recharge rate of your battery
             auxiliary power)


             Shield damage will reduce the maximum power that your shield may


             Damage to the weapon systems will reduce your hit accuracy.


             Significant engine system damage will render the engines
inoperable. This is
             decidedly bad in combat as you will be a sitting duck.  That's
not bad as
             sitting ducks lie... but then again, I never believed a liar...
it's like they
             always say...

             Life Support

             Significant damage to life support systems will erase backup
encodes. This also
             very bad.  Restoring your security officer after battle to regain
his sanity
             will be impossible at that point.  Obviously restoring or
re-encoding your crew
             would be penultimately stupid following encode loss.  It would be
the same as
             saving a blank file over a good file. Dumb.  Yes, very dumb.


             Damage to communication systems will make talking with aliens


             If the (CPU) Central Processing Unit onboard your ship is damaged
many of the
             displays will not function correctly.  Damage to the ship's
computer will not
             kill the crew but will make most of the displays and menus
difficult if not
             impossible to use.

             Zoom (+-)

             Above the Active Fire and Scanner buttons you will see the Zoom
In/Out buttons.
             Zooming in and out will change the maximum scan range for the
Battle Display.
             When enemies are very near it is useful to Zoom in, while distant
enemies will
             only be visible from several Zooms out. Play around with these
until you are
             familiar with their function. TimeSlice (+-)

             The TimeSlice control for battle is at the top right of the battle
screen.  The
             effect and control of the TimeSlice value is the same as it is for
the Main
             Screen (see Medical, Options, TimeSlice)

             I've read all of this and I'm still lost.

             For the simplest battle control you need to remember FIVE
             1. Scanners and Fire Control must be active.
             2. TimeSlice must be large (20 - 30)
             3. Head away from everything close to you in the Battle Plane by
                the ThrustPad (Run away! Run away!).
             4. Set your Shield Level to one quarter of its total power.
             5. Keep selecting all the vessels closest to you on the Battle
                until they are all destroyed.

             Beginners should use these five rules only for as long as they have
to. These
             controls are effective against simpler enemies, but it is important
to remember
             complex situations require complex strategies.  Use these tips only
as a
             foundation for your own schemes.

             7. Release Drones

             This function creates a dummy enemy in the computer for you to
fight in mock
             combat.  Originally the battles from this simulation were harmless
             encounters.  However, damage taken before your encodes were revived
has made
             drone combat potentially dangerous. While the damage taken by your
ship in
             these simulations is not physcially real the computer is unable to
tell the
             difference.  When encode containment reaches zero during mock
combat the
             computer was to exit the combat environment.  Now, the computer
believes the
             damage it has taken has actually erased the crew.  In the event of
an encode
             breach the computer was also programmed to reload the crew from
cold storage.
             Unfortunately only six hot slots remain for the thousands of crew
back ups that
             exist.  Confused, the computer will compress the data and stuff it
into those
             slots anyway.  This spells death for you.

             Take this as a warning.  While drone battle is relatively inane it
can be
             fatal.  Do not attempt drone warfare unless you are armed with at
least two
             Dirks.  It is also suggested that you play in Easy mode (see
Medical, Options,
             Difficulty) before you get yourself killed.


             1 Star Map
             2 Sector Codex
             3 Local Travel Hist.
             4 Quick Ship Status
             5 Target a System
             6 Astrogation Rsrch.
             7 Full Ship Status
             8 Local System Info.

             1. Local Area Star Map

             This star map will appear in the left side of the Primary Display. 
It will
             reveal all stars within a 40 light year radius.

             2. Sector Codex

             Within the Sector Codex any star that is selected is automatically
             Due to the number of stars per sector the rotating sector map on
the left is
             too dense for you to make accurate selections.  You may only select
a star from
             the x-y and y-z plane views.  Selecting the engage engines icon
will take you
             to whatever location you have selected without the targeting
procedure. Origin:
             This button will return you to your present location within the
Sector Codex.

             X-Loc, Y-Loc, and Z-Loc: These are your X, Y, and Z coordinates
             You can enter coordinates into these by selecting the number area
with your
             pointer.  When inputting coordinates from log entries the Sector
Codex will
             take you as close to that system as possible.  The targeting
computer is
             fallible, however. It may be necessary to select the system from
the x-y and
             y-z plane views once you know a star's approximate position.

             Sectors (1-8): These buttons allow you to view the areas you have
explored in
             the eight sectors that make up the local star cluster.

             Arrow Keys: These keys will allow you to change the perspective of
the rotating
             sector map.

             Travel Log: This button will provide you with a history of the
sector you have
             selected.  White stars in the sector map are those you have been
to.  Red stars
             in the sector map are those you have seen in the Local Area Star
Map but have
             not travelled to.  The Scans Completed gauge in this area is not
             accurate.  As planets age and fall into new stages of development
so do their
             scans become out of date.  This percentage may be smaller than you
thought it
             should be.  The percent difference is a result of these changes.

             Sector Map: Selecting this button will take you out of the Travel
Log Mode.  If
             you aren't in this mode when you select this button nothing
will happen.

             3. Local Travel History

             Local Travel History is not a true path of travel.  What it will
tell you is
             the order in which you have visited the stars in the Local Area
Star Map.

             4. Quick Ship Status

             Quick Ship Status will give you the info associated with the Alert
Bulbs on the
             right of the main screen.  This is a list of hull integrity,
primary power,
             auxiliary power, and shield power levels.  You may also access this
screen by
             selecting the Alert Bulbs themselves in the Main Screen.

             5. Target a System

             To target a system you must have selected a system from either the
Local Area
             Star Map or the Local System Info menu.  When a system from either
of these is
             selected you may then enter that system into the targeting computer
             selecting this function.  Once a location is targeted you may
travel to it by
             engaging the engines from the button bar at the top of the Primary

             6. Astrogation Research

             This toggles your Astrogation officer's research status.
Researching will
             increase their knowledge base, or experience points. Do this
whenever possible.

             7. Full Ship Status

             Full Ship Status will give you a breakdown of damages to the
primary systems on
             board, the hull, fuel, and cargo statuses as well as the ship

             8. Local System Information

             This is the sister display to Local Area Star Map.  When both
displays are
             active they affect each other.  Scrolling through the list of stars
in the
             Local System Information menu will cause the target circle on the
Local Area
             Star Map to move from star to star depending on the one selected. 
This menu
             has two primary functions which are as follows:

             Printouts of all visited systems

             Selecting the Printer icon from the far right of the button bar
will provide
             you with a complete printout of all stars you have visited.  As
with the Cargo
             printer function you must have a printer on-line and connected to
your computer
             for this to work.

             Targeting stars and engaging engines

             To move to another star you must first target the system you wish
to travel to.
             Each star in the list has a distance in light years to the right of
it.  Stars
             whose distance value is white are within travelling distance (i.e.
you have the
             fuel to get there).  Select a star from this list that is within
your reach.
             To target that system select the arrow-and-x icon from the button
bar.  To
             travel to a targeted system select the engage engines icon from the
button bar.


             1 Game Options
             2 Begin Time Burst
             3 Clear All Displays
             4 Save Game
             5 Load Game
             6 Medical Research
             7 Encode Crew Member
             8 Decode Crew Member
             9 Quit to Dos

             1. Game Options

             The Notepad icon will bring up a list of features that you can
change about the

             Screen Saver (On/Off)

             When this function is on and the system is idle for 750 loops
through the main
             routine (750 loops is officially defined to be "a little
while" in Channel7-

             Time Slice (1-250)

             The Time Slice is the delay in milliseconds that is inserted into
each scan
             cycle.  Suffice it to say that increasing the Time Slice slows the
             down.  Depending on the speed of your machine you'll need to
change the value
             of the Time Slice accordingly (66Mhz = 35, 50Mhz = 20, MHz = 10,
MHz = 0).

             Sound (On/Off)

             This turns the sound for music and sound effects on or off
depending on the
             setting.  If you're machine is particularly slow you may want
to turn the sound
             off to get better performance.

             Difficulty (Min/Avg/Max)

             Difficulty effectively changes your ability in battle.

             General Messages (None/Some/All)

             This function controls the crew alert messages (i.e. when a device
is complete,
             when artifact research is completed, etc.)

             None: When you are not in the Main Screen your crew will not report
to you.

             Some: When you are not in the Main Screen your crew will not
directly report to
             you, but will instead put there messages into the Info Box at the
bottom left
             of the Main Screen.

             All: The crew will report to you all the time regardless of where
you are in
             the interface.  Messages will also be sent to the Main Screen Info

             Animation (On/Off)

             This function turns Animation off and on depending on the setting
             includes cube and planet rotation.)  As with Sound, Animation may
need to be
             disabled if you are running a slow machine.  Every effort was made
to make the
             game playable on a machine as slow as a 386 running at 25 MHz. In
most cases
             either Animation or Sound will function on a slow machine but not
both at the
             same time.  Sorry.

             Font Style (Iron/Clean/Block)

             This feature will allow you to choose between three font styles. 
Play around
             and see which ones you like.

             Auto-Save (On/Off)

             When the Auto-Save feature is active you will be prompted to save
your game
             each time you travel to a new system.  If you like to save
frequently this is a
             nice feature.  If a save prompt constantly appearing annoys you, we
suggest you
             turn Auto-Save off.

             Volume (0-64)

             This adjust the volume level of sound effects and music.  (0 = no
sound, 64 =
             max. volume)

             2. Begin Time Burst

             This command will cause 1/2 days to pass.  This is often useful if
you have a
             large device that you need completed.  Devices of this nature often
             several days to complete.

             3. Clear All Displays

             This command will clear any active displays from the Primary

             4. Save Game

             Used to store your progress.

             5. Load Game

             Used to restore past games that you have saved.

             6. Medical Research

             This toggles your Medical officer's research status. 
Researching will increase
             their knowledge base, or experience points.  Do this whenever

             7,8 Encode/Decode Crew Member

             (see Psychometry, Psychological Evaluation)

             9. Quit to Dos

             This command will exit the game and take you directly to a DOS
prompt. If
             you've made important changes to your mission be sure
you've saved the game
             before you make this selection.

             Saving your artifacts until the end is a better idea... the
experience you gain
             as a result of researching an artifact is a percentage of your
total knowledge

             Da' Credits

                                            The Core Team

             Code Master: Robert W.Morgan III
             World Design: Jeremy Holt

             Sound Team

             Soundtrak: Andrew G. Sega
             a.k.a. Necros of the Psychic Monks
             Sound Code: Otto Chrons
             Sound Effects: Robert W.Morgan III

             Grafix Art Team

             The Interface: Jeremy Holt
             Aliens: PJ Beachem
             The Scavengers: Chris Tallent

             Design Assistants

             Babble: Chris P. Cash
             Rocks and Minerals: Scott Davis
             Planetologist: Jeff Smith
             Jeff's Sidekick: Alex Boster

             Writing Team

             Conversations: Jeremy Holt
             Maniacal Plotting: Jeff Smith

             Documentation Team

             Words: Webster
             Punctuation: Alfredo Withemstoe
             Dangling Participle: Mike Botts

             Quality Assurance Team

             Fanatic Devotees: Mike Matheny,
             P.J. Beachem, Jeff Smith, Alex Boster,
             Amy Butler, Ben Vandergrift,
             Those other weird guys.


             All rights reserved.  No modifications, disassembly, and reverse
engineering of
             this program and/or documentation is allowed. This package is
copyright March
             13, 1994 by Channel 7.  The authors make no representations,
express or
             implied, with to respect to this documentation or the software it
             including without limitations, any implied warranties of
merchantability or
             fitness for a particular purpose, all of which are expressly
disclaimed.  Users
             should be aware that included in the terms and conditions under
which Channel 7
             is willing to license Ironseed is a provision that the author and
             distribution licensees, distributors, and dealers shall in no event
be liable
             for any indirect, incidental, or coincidental damages and that
liability for
             direct damages shall be limited to the amount of the purchase price
paid for

             In addition to the foregoing, users should recognize that all
complex software
             systems and their documentation contain errors and omissions.  The
author shall
             not be responsible under any circumstance for providing information
on or
             correction to errors and omissions discovered at any time in this
             or the software it describes, whether or not they are aware of the
errors or
             omissions.  The authors do not recommend the use of the software
described in
             this documentation for applications in which errors or omissions
could threaten
             life, injury, or significant loss.

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