Prospector Quick Start Guide v.1 (for version 1.8b) by Niltrias, 6NOV2009 Edit
Part I Edit
After you have chosen a name for your ship, you will see the Navigation Screen. The large window is a map of the sector, and will start off fairly empty.
Some examples of what you will see on this screen are:
* @ - Your ship * `*` - A star * S - A spacestation * o - A rogue planet or a wormhole * s - A drifting ship.
When you begin the game, your ship will be at a space station. You can dock for free on the first turn, but after that you will have to pay money. Generally, free docking is a good idea, so press the "d" button to dock.
2) The Space Station Menu Edit
After pressing "d", a list of options will show up. (Company name) Office -- Here you can receive new missions, sell minerals and map and biological data.
* Equipment -- Here you can buy equipment for your ship (Engines, shields, weapons, etc.) or your crew (jetpacks, guns, spacesuits, etc.) * Sickbay -- Here you can buy medical equipment or cure diseased crewmembers. * Fuel and Ammunition -- Choosing this automatically refills your fuel and ammo, at a small cost. When you start the game, your fuel and ammo are full. * Repair -- Here you can repair your ship for 100 Credits/Hull Point (HP) * Hire Crew -- Here you can hire new officers or security team members. * Trading -- Here you can buy and sell trade goods. * Casino -- Here you can gamble or listen to rumors about pirates, prices, and other things. * Exit -- Choosing this returns you to the Navigation Screen.
What you should buy at the beginning is largely a matter of personal preference. Some suggestions would be binoculars, lights, and lamps for exploring planets, or a Navigational Computer to help explore space, or trade goods to start trading immediately.
Part 2 Edit
Now that you have had a chance to explore the starting space station, lets take another look at the Navigation Screen. The main window, again, is a map of the sector. The bottom window shows your recent messages. The right window shows information about your ship and crew. Lets take a look at the right window.
* Top line -- Ship type and name. * next -- Hull points and Shield points * next -- Pilot, Gunner, Science officer skill levels * next -- Doctor Skill level and number of Security team members * next -- Sensor level * next -- Engine level * Next -- A list of your ship weapons. D# shows the damage of the weapon, R#/#/# shows the weapons short, medium and long range.
At the bottom of the right window, you can see your ships current trade cargo, Fuel, credits, and elapsed turns. Keep an eye on your fuel, you dont want to run out while in the depths of space.
The next thing to do is start exploring. Using the number pad, move your ship around until you find a star (`*`). When you move onto the star, a star-system map will become visable between the sector map and the message window. it will look something like this:
`*` oo o O o
The `*` is the star, the "o"s are normal planets, and the "O" is a gas giant. You can (s)can any planet, and you can (l)and on normal planets. Lets try scanning a planet. First, press "s", then use the 4 and 6 buttons on the number pad to move the cursor left or right. When the cursor is on a planet that you would like to scan, hit enter. This will take you to the Planet Scanning Screen.
4) Planet Scanning Screen. Edit
This screen looks a bit like the Navigation screen. The large window is a map of the planet, the bottom window shows any special messages about the planet, and the right window shows basic planetary information. Pressing "l" will land your ship on the planet, pressing enter will return you to the navigation screen. Lets try landing on one of the planets in the system. When you have landed, the Planet Screen will appear.
5) Planet Screen. Edit
This is where you explore the planet. The main window is the same map as you saw in the Planet Scanning Screen, but as you move around it will fill in with more map data. Movement, as with the Navigation Screen, is done with the number pads. Try walking around the planet, but be sure to keep an eye on your Oxygen Supply, at the bottom right corner of the screen-you can refill oxygen by moving onto your ship, but running out of oxygen away from your ship is lethal. Some common sights you will find on planets are:
* @ - Your ship * @ - Your away team * ^ - Mountains (impassible without jetpacks) * . - Flat land * " - Shrubs * T - Trees * `*` - Minerals * % - Corpses * (a-z) - Creatures - be careful!
Pressing "i" will inspect any plants or dead creatures that your away team is standing on, giving you Bio data which you can sell at a Space Station. You can also press "I" to auto-inspect anything you step on, which is generally less of a hassle. Some other useful keys on the Planet Screen:
* x - Examine another tile. Very useful the first few times you play. * f - Fire guns (after you press f, press a direction on the number pad to indicate the direction of fire.) * c - Communicate with an creature.
To engage in close-combat with a creature, simply use the number pad to walk into their space. Be warned, however, that combat with a starting crew can be very dangerous. A little more on combat: At the top of the right window, you will see something that looks like this:
Not all letters will be there, and they may have different colors. What they mean is:
* C - Captain * P - Pilot * G - Gunner * S - Science Officer * D - Doctor * @ - Security team * X - Dead crew member.
If the letter is green, they are in good health. If it is yellow, they have been wounded. Xs, of course, are always red. Losing away team members has various effects.
* Dead captain - If you still make it back to the ship, he will get better. If everybody else dies too it is game over. * Dead Pilot - Less chance of succeeding in space-based pilot test. No effect while on planet surface. * Dead Gunner - Less damage in combat * Dead S. Officer - No bio data from plants/corpses, unable to communicate with critters. * Dead Doctor - No auto-healing * Dead Security - No effect.
Below the crew status line, you can further details on the away team's combat ability: Armor, Firearms, and Melee. To take a more in-depth look at your crew, press "A". Press escape when you are done to return to the planet screen. When you are finished exploring the planet, return to your ship and press "l" to launch back to the Navigation Screen.
6) Space Combat Screen Edit
Occasionally, you will either attack or be attacked by ships or space creatures. When this happens, the Space Combat Screen appears. Some common things to see here are:
* @ - Your ship * `*` - Plasma trail...very hot! * F - Enemy fighter * C - Enemy cruiser
Move around using the number pad. At some point, your gunner will inform you that he is ready to fire. Press "f" to fire, and use the number pad to choose your target if there is more than one in range. Destroying all enemy ships will automatically exit the Space Combat Screen, but if you want to escape your enemies, you will have to make it to one of the edges of the screen and press "r". Two other commands that are sometimes useful in the Space Combat Screen:
* d - Drop shields. This lets your send more power to your Engines for speedy get-aways * a - Activate Sensors. This increases the area you can see, but makes it easier for the enemy to see you.
7) Other Edit
Two more useful commands:
* q -- Quit. This ENDS your game * S -- Save. This allows your to save the game to continue in the future.
This concludes the quickstart guide. There are more commands, and many many more things to do and find in the game, but this should be enough to get your on your feet. For more information, check the manual or press ? in game to get the full list of commands.