There will see a series of three screens which provide background information for the player's career. Click anywhere on the screen to navigate through the corporate directives. The game will then move to the Herc Base. This is where the player will conduct all operations before and between missions.
The first assignment is to develop the fleet. The player has already been assigned two Hercs and two Bioderms at the rank of Ensign. They also have 10,000 credits to their name and the first mission (Training) is . Let’s take care of this mission first, then we’ll come back to the Herc Base for additional training. Click on the launch pad of the Herc Base or on the Launch Mission text to get underway.
After a couple of cinematic sequences, your next view is an informational screen that tells you the turn number and your mission objective. You will also see a yellow hex with highlighted green and three white marks in the center. The green area is the area of the map that is visible to your Herc’s sensors. The three white marks represent the positions of your Herc Carrier and your two Hercs. Click once anywhere on the screen to descend to the battlefield.
You will see a zoomed-in view of your Remora in the main window. In the upper left portion of the screen you will see a navigational mini-map with four direction buttons around it. Click the lower left button twice to zoom out on the main window. Then use the arrow keys on your keyboard to scroll your view and explore the visible area of the map. Notice how the white rectangle in the mini-map moves with your scroll. You can also do a “sweep view” by clicking and dragging the rectangle in the mini-map. This is more useful when more of the map is revealed.
The message in the main window gives you detailed information about your mission. You must find the remaining structure on this planet and destroy it. The message indicates that it is in the center of the mini-map. Select your Remora (Seiki SunFire) by clicking on it once. Then click once at the center of the mini-map. Your main map view turns black because none of those hexes are visible by your sensors. Click once on a hex at the center of the main map and you will see a row of hexes highlight in green, and possibly red. This represents the movement path of your Herc. Green is within range, red is out of range. Click a second time on the same hex, even if it’s red, to start your Herc’s movement.
If the structure is detected by your sensors, the Herc will discontinue its move. This prevents you from moving right into the path of danger, possibly with no reactor energy left to do anything about it. The idea here is to move as close to the structure as possible to allow you to fire on it, while saving enough reactor energy to move to safety afterward (the structure is armed). Your best bet on this first turn, is to stay about four or five hexes distant from the structure.
First adjust your shields between you and the target to account for return fire. Click once on the Shields button, then click and drag the cursor at the center of the Shields control panel to position your shields between you and the structure. Repeat this for the Fast Shadow. Now, with your Remora selected, target the structure by clicking on it once, then fire by clicking on it a second time. Each subsequent click results in a random firing sequence by all of your weapons. Notice that the structure may return fire. When you have depleted the Remora’s arsenal, repeat these moves with your Fast Shadow. Then select the Move button at the middle left of the screen and click Crouch to place your Fast Shadow in a defensive position. Click once on your Remora and Crouch it as well. Now click End Turn and take the minimal fire that the structure sends your way.
You will notice that your current Bioderm pilots are not very skilled with weapons. Now that you have full reactor power, you can move closer to the structure to fire and still have plenty of energy left to move to safety. But before you continue the combat, let’s check the status of your Hercs and pilots.
Select either Herc and click once on the small wireframe image of it at the bottom center of the screen. This displays the Damage Model. If you’re doing everything right, all components should still be 100%. Damaged components can be repaired back at the Herc Base for now. Later in your career, you may acquire nanorepair technology which will allow you to make repairs directly in the Damage Model you see now.
Click Done to return to the battlefield, then, with your Remora selected, click once on the image of the Bioderm at the bottom right of the screen. This is the pilot status screen which tells you the Health, Stability, and Toxin Levels of your Bioderms. This is also where you temporarily enhance the Skill Ratings of your pilots. Since all of the weapon abilities of both pilots are in dire need of some improvement, take a moment to do so here. Note the Skill Ratings of Protoderm Model 101. Click once on the button labeled Jackup. Notice how her Skill Ratings improve. At the same time her Toxin Level jumps, which lowers her Genetic Stability. Too much of this stuff and your pilot could lose effectiveness or die altogether. Give her a second infusion, then using the arrow keys in the upper left of the screen, scroll to the next pilot and administer two shots of Jackup as well. Then click Done.
Select your Remora and move it to within one hex of the structure. Make sure your shields are still positioned between you and the structure, then empty your arsenal. Repeat all of these moves until the structure is destroyed. Once the structure is destroyed, you may leave the battlefield in one of three ways: choose Leave Battlefield from the pull-down menu; hit Ctrl-X; or return your Hercs to the Herc Carrier by clicking on the Herc Carrier for your last move with each Herc. A message will ask if you want to re-board. When both Hercs are on board, you will receive a Mission Debriefing. Click Done to return to the Herc Base. Congratulations, you have been promoted to the rank of Unit Leader.
Note: If you hang around on this planet long enough after destroying the structure, a solitary Cybrid will eventually find you. If you choose to do combat with it, employ the same tactics as with the structure. Good luck!
The first thing to do while back at the Herc Base is to tend to your fleet. If there is any cost associated with repairing the entire fleet, now is the time to do it while you have the credits. Choose Manage Hercs, click on the Seiki SunFire, then click Repair and Repair Fleet. Click Done twice.
Upon completion of your Training Mission you were given command of four Hercs and four Bioderms, but you only own two of each. Click on Purchase New Herc to purchase another Herc (you will have to earn more credits before you can fulfill your potential command). Select the Fast Shadow, then click Purchase and Done.
You now have to prep your fleet for future successful missions. Go back into the Manage Hercs area. Choose Fast Shadow:1. With your credits at a minimum and with a Bioderm purchase inevitable, you must be frugal with your upgrades at this point. Since all of the weapons are currently sufficient, we’ll upgrade the shields and add an electronic counter measure to this Herc. Under Systems, click on Shield: Shield 300. Select Shield 600 from the list. You can scroll through the description, then click Purchase. Now, click on the first empty slot and scroll to the Single-Band ECM in the Available Components list. Purchase it, then click on the name of the Herc at the top of the screen to rename it anything you like. When you are finished, exit back to the Herc Base Menu.
Now you need a new pilot. Click on the Bioderm Facility, then on Biovat. Here is where you generate Bioderms. Click on the arrow key to the left of the black-and-white Bioderm image until Khadisha appears. Click Create. You can rename any of your Bioderms in any of the other areas of the Bioderm Facility by clicking on their names.
With your remaining credits you can enhance the vital skills of your pilots. Remember that you only have Energy, Cannon and Missile weapons mounted to your Hercs, so those are the only skills you need to worry about. Click on VREC. The pilots skills are shown along with the costs to enhance those skills. Upgrade Khadisha’s Cannon, Energy, and Missile skills until you run out of credits.
Now the pilots must be biomechanically linked with the Hercs. Click on Link and be sure Khadisha’s image is showing. Select Seiki SunFire for Khadisha. Repeat these steps to link the remaining Protoderm with the remaining Fast Shadow. You now have three Hercs equipped and linked to three Bioderms.
The only remaining step is to select your next mission. Back at the Herc Base, click on the . Note the Career Status information here. Click on Select Mission and select a mining mission.
The Mission Briefing notes explain your objectives and provide you with important planet information. Click on Accept. Now click on the Herc Carrier in the center of the Herc Base to embark on a journey from which very few ever return.
Bioderms are similar to clones. The DNA sample they are cloned from is incorporated into a protoplasm to form a base genetic matrix (BGM). The DNA samples come from former human heroes. In the Bioderm Facility, you may preview a catalogue of BGMs to create a Bioderm.
Protoplasm is used because it grows faster than a “conventional” clone and it maximizes the potential of the DNA. Protoplasm is unstable,however, and one of the major ratings a Bioderm has is its Genetic Stability. Stress and overuse of StimGland cause the Bioderm to lose cohesion, making it degenerate into the veiny blue protoplasm from which it was created. Protoplasm also has the interesting side effect of magnifying the electromagnetic field inherent in living beings. Polarizing this field reestablishes Genetic Stability. Certain Bioderms are created with Command potential, which enhances their own electromagnetic field exponentially. It also allows them to stabilize an unstable Bioderm by moving near it (within three hexes).
Bioderms have limited life spans, giving them insufficient time to develop their skills through conventional training. Virtual Reality Training became the perfect solution. Bioderms are given Genetic Computer Strand Implants during their initial creation. These DNA Supercomputers benefit the Bioderm in two ways: they retrieve the genetic memories of those skills practiced by the initial BGM donor, and they act as receptors for bioelectric sequence coding to further enhance skills. Bioelectric sequences for specific skills were recorded from the original Herc Pilots during the last Great War, and the best of these became the skill enhancement program codes. Bioelectric sequence coding is combined with a cerebral-direct imaging device to imprint the Bioderm as quickly as possible with additional skill training. While efficient, VR Training is unable to completely maximize a Bioderm’s skill potential. Among themselves, Bioderms refer to this process as ‘getting the chair.’
This is where you recuperate and recycle your Bioderm troops. The list of options include: Going to the Medvat is very inexpensive. Generally, it is far more cost effective to heal bioderms than risk taking them to battle without healing or detoxing them.
- Heal All
This is where you create Bioderms from a base genetic matrix (BGM) pool.
The Rank and Age of each Bioderm is listed to the left of its image. Its Health, Genetic Stability and Toxin Levels are listed to the right. Also listed to the left are the Bioderm’s Skill Ratings in eight categories.
Use the left and right arrow buttons to scroll through the list of available Bioderms. Scroll to your Biderm of choice, then click the Create button to bring them to life. The created Bioderm is named after its BGM model as a default (Example: Tola). It is recommended that you give each Bioderm a distinctive name to distinguish them from one another on the Battlefield. (To do this, click on their names while in the Link, VREC, or Medvat areas.) When you are finished, the image of the Bioderm converts to color and the cost is subtracted from your total credits.
VR Training Facility
First, scroll to the Bioderm whose ratings you wish to affect. Click on the button to the left of any of the skills to increase them incrementally. You may only increase any skill halfway to the maximum rating attainable by that Bioderm. In other words, an initial skill rating of 75 can only be improved to 87 if the maximum is 99. Choose your enhancements wisely. It costs more to improve a skill each time and with less improvement as a result.
Bioderms have distinct skills. A list of eight skills is shown beside each one in the Bioderm Facility Biovat. The VREC is where you “train” your Bioderms to enhance each of these skills:
- Electron Flux
- Advanced Technology
This is the process of biomechanically linking a Bioderm to a Herc. If no Bioderms are available when you access this area, then you must create them in the Biovat. You have four options in the Link area:
- Unlink All
Bioderms have distinct skills. A list of eight skills is shown beside each one in the Bioderm Facility Biovat: The higher the skill rating, the better. All skills can be increased (at a cost) in VR Training.
Two numbers show the age and life span of each Bioderm to the left of its picture in the Biovat. Age and life span are measured in years, with a Unitech year equaling ten months. Bioderms with longer life spans are generally more expensive and have higher overall ratings. All Bioderms start at age zero when they are created. Bioderms that are created, but not linked to a Herc, are cryogenically frozen and do not age between missions. Age is important because every mission requires a predetermined amount of time to complete. After each mission, you will see the remaining life expectancy of each Bioderm that you have linked during the mission debriefing. Make sure they all have enough for the next mission or recycle them in the Medvat and replace them with new ones.
The two numbers show the current health and the potential health of the Bioderm displayed. All Bioderms start completely healthy upon creation. Health deteriorates as a Bioderm’s Herc Herc or the Bioderm directly takes hits during battle. It will also deteriorate once Toxin levels are maximized. Health can be restored with the Regen option in the Medvat.
The two numbers show the current Genetic Stability and the potential Genetic Stability of the Bioderm displayed. All Bioderms start 100% stable upon creation. Stability deteriorates as a Bioderm’s Herc takes hits during battle or as Stimgland is administered. Once Genetic Stability reaches half of its maximum, Skill Ratings begin to drop. Health can be restored with the Regen option in the Medvat.
The two numbers show the toxin level and the maximum toxin level each Bioderm can sustain. All Bioderms start with zero toxins upon creation. Toxins increase as a Bioderm is infused with StimGland while out on missions. Health is affected once the Toxin level is maxed out. They can be reduced with the Detox option in the Medvat.
The base genetic matrix pool contains the makings for 17 Bioderms and three protoderms which you must purchase to pilot your Hercs. As you progress through the Commander Ranks you will be incrementally rewarded with ten unique Bioderms, as well as other tactical advantages. Each Derm was given a rich backstory, which is excerpted from the games manual below.
The original Imra was an unusual choice as a Bioderm donor in that she served in the military before the advent of the Hercs. She was an oft-decorated career officer in the United States Navy, and she was that country's last Secretary of Defense. She was a leader in making the a technological innovator, which in turn resulted in a highly favorable merger into the world-states. The Imra Bioderm is intelligent, flexible in her thinking, physically fit and agile, and a natural leader with command Bioderm potential. She has an exceptional degree of inherent stability and responds well to Stimgland. Of note are exceptionally high ratings using missiles and advanced technology.
One of the most revered Herc Commanders of all time, Tola was born in a Chilean deep-mining archeology site, the son of a tram mechanic, but from the beginning he was different from his peers. A proud and restless youth, he claimed to trace his ancestry to Aztec kings. A natural leader, at 18, he worked to form the first trade union at the site and successfully negotiated safer working conditions for miners. However, his true ambitions lay elsewhere. When the Chilean Mining Corporation became one of the few Earth powers able to field Hercs, he joined their forces and quickly rose in rank.Cool, and at his most creative under pressure, he never lost a battle in his long career as a Herc pilot and Commander. An inventive and tireless strategist, his combat journals were published as The Way of the Herc, still required reading for all Herc Commander candidates. Tola is generally acknowledged as the greatest Herc warrior of all time, and he eventually became one of Earth’s last great leaders. Bioderms created from this template have many desirable characteristics, not the least of which is a high tolerance to Stimgland, but some Commanders are reluctant to have even a copy of such a great leader under their command.
Born in the Central-African enclaves, Uru wanted to be a warrior since he was a boy. Despite an agile mind Uru was an average student, and had to study mightily to be accepted into the service. Time and time again his superiors tried to turn him away from the Hercs, thinking him unqualified, but Uru would hear none of it. He finally found a sympathetic C.O. who recognized the value of his strength and determination, and who helped him pass the pilot exams. Uru's skills developed at an average pace, but he ultimately became an excellent pilot and warrior, and his strength of character made him popular with his squad-mates. This is reflected in the Uru Bioderm’s potential for Command.
Jath led a makeshift resistance cell known as the “Lightning Raiders” above the NorCal region. Their specialty was the use of light Hercs to make daring hit-and-run attacks on superior Cybrid forces. Jath was handsome, looked up to by his men, popular with women, and sometimes overconfident. Some historians attribute Jath’s success to luck rather than skill, but others point out his ability to assemble and motivate a team of warriors more skilled than himself, and his talent for using sensor data and high-tech intelligence to strike the Cybrids at their most vulnerable point. The Jath Bioderm doesn’t greatly excel in any area of combat skill except for those involving advanced technology.
Born among the brain mines, she toiled in a thought-shop for years, plugged into a human-powered computer network leased to the Ugandan military. With few social skills, Persis excelled at solitary operations when she joined the resistance effort. When the Cybrids swept through , Persis was one of the advance scouts who provided reconnaissance on the line, while the first tunnels of Sub-Congo were drilled.The Persis Bioderm is physically frail, but she compensates with good initial skill ratings and learns the basic weapons quickly. An excellent pilot, she also has enhanced technical proficiency in advanced technology. She has a high tolerance to Stimgland.
During the desperate days of the Earthsiege, a group of young war orphans was organized into “the Vengeful Hand,” a squadron of suicide troops. Placed in command of stripped and barely functional Hercs packed with explosives and equipped with ejection seats, members of the Hand drove their Hercs against enemy positions, knowing there was almost no chance they would return. Among the first members of the Vengeful Hand was Kyoko, young and physically frail, she more than compensated with her indomitable spirit. On her first mission she ejected after delivering her warhead, and found cover before the explosion. She escaped in the resulting confusion, and traveled fifty miles across enemy territory before being rescued by a friendly patrol. She immediately returned to the Hand, and over the protests of others, requested a second mission. Her Herc was disabled just short of her objective. Wounded and surrounded, she destroyed her Herc at the last moment, taking an entire enemy squad with her.While her combat abilities and skills were largely untested, Kyoko’s warrior spirit was seen as an excellent characteristic for a Bioderm. Unfortunately, due to the nature of her death, the genetic samples available were less than ideal. The Kyoko Bioderm is unstable, quirky, and prone to Stim abuse during off-hours. Despite reasonable piloting skills and a knack for advanced tech, the Kyoko Bioderm has few desirable characteristics other than low cost.
Though oft decorated, Khadisha never advanced much in rank, and never received a command of her own, despite good leadership qualities. A superb soldier, she became bored and restless away from combat in a way that often had her up on report. Tough, no-nonsense, and short tempered, Khadisha considered the fist-fight to be her favorite form of recreation. She had little patience with green and incompetent superiors, and she was twice court-marshaled for striking a superior. In both cases, the charges were dismissed due to extenuating circumstances.The Khadisha Bioderm is tough and dependable, but she requires an equally tough and competent Commander to maintain discipline.
The original Nura was known as a pilot’s pilot, a model of military professionalism. She served against the Cybrids in theaters all over the outer solar-system, rising through the ranks to command her own squadron. Intelligent, personable, cool, a master of all Herc weapons, she received many decorations during her career. Nura was chosen as a Bioderm donor not because she was exceptional, but because she was a model soldier. The Nura Bioderm shares the keen mind of the original. She learns quickly, and is especially adept at learning those skills associated with standard weapon types (energy, missile, and cannon).
Elana’s mother and father were diplomats, from and respectively, who met when they served on the first World Defense Council. Her parents were upset with her decision to join the military, but Elana could see the war wasn’t going well and knew where she was needed. Elana inherited her parent’s charisma and ability to reason and communicate, and she was recognized as a child prodigy. A natural leader, she was immediately recognized as officer material and rapidly rose in rank to command her own squad. Her leadership skills and positive outlook made her a hero during the darkest days of the first Earthsiege. She could inspire her troops to battle against impossible odds, believing not only that they would survive, but they would win. And win they did, again and again, with minimal losses. Her greatest victory came in leading the first successful assault on the Cybrid stronghold in the Antarctic. Elana gained a reputation as a brilliant field commander, and was soon promoted to battalion commander. Though she performed admirably, she quietly missed the close camaraderie of her squad leader days.The Elana Bioderm has excellent potential as a pilot and warrior, with innate command potential. Physically strong, she has a strong resistance to the negative effects of Stimgland. The Elana Bioderm also retains the brilliant mind of the original, learning at an extraordinary rate.
Kouras was born in the slums of the dome just before the first Cybrid wars, and was among a few survivors who escaped off-planet to join the Martian resistance. Too young to fight, he helped in the Herc bays and ammo dumps, learning Hercs and their weapons inside and out, and bartering personal favors and black market goods for time in the simulators. He distinguished himself in his first Herc mission, and became the youngest Herc Commander in the Martian Resistance.The Kouras Bioderm is intelligent, demonstrating an ability to learn even though his initial skills are average. He is especially proficient with advanced technology. Kouras is stable, but edgy in a way that makes him occasionally unpredictable.
The original Garan was never actually a Herc warrior. Instead, he was a Herc technician for the Martian resistance during the first Earthsiege. Though skilled in many areas, his specialty was Herc simulator repair, and he logged hundreds of hours in the simulators. When a Cybrid attack destroyed the pilot barracks of his resistance cell, he climbed into a surviving Herc and rode out to face the enemy. Outgunned and outnumbered, he single-handedly repelled the Cybrid attack long enough to allow evacuation of the survivors. He was decorated, and offered a commission as a Herc warrior, which he refused, preferring to continue to serve as a Herc mechanic. For the rest of his life, he served as mentor and unofficial advisor to a whole generation of Herc warriors.The Garan Bioderm maintains the technical proficiency of the original, but his personality has been genetically tweaked to make him an eager warrior as well.
Jarvis learned to fight in the tunnels of New Chicago late in the first Cybrid conflicts. A street tough, his future seemed short and grim. Then he stumbled on a computer record of a distant ancestor who fought heroically in Earth’s first World War. He identified the picture of his ancestor, standing proudly in uniform, and this discovery changed his life. He decided there was no honor dying in the streets, and if he had to die, he would die a warrior. He placed a copy of the picture in a gold locket which he kept with him the rest of his life, a good-luck charm, and volunteered as a Herc pilot. Intelligent, possessed of well-rounded abilities, Jarvis became an excellent warrior. He entered the conflict too late to see much action, but he was twice decorated, and remained a career military man until his retirement. He died in bed at his family home in New Chicago.The Jarvis Bioderm is a good warrior with the ability to learn quickly. The model has a high initial stability, but a slight flaw in the BGM has artificially elevated the instability threshold.
It is known that the original Jamax was a career officer who ended his career with an outstanding personal and command record. His military record is all that survives of his later life, as his entire base was wiped out in the second Cybrid Lunar offensive. A more complete record exists of Jamax’s boyhood however, and in an effort to capture the qualities that later made him a good military man, the Jamax personality implant is based on his early life. As a result the Jamax Bioderm starts out green and untested, and needs repeated combat trials to turn him into an effective warrior. The Jamax Bioderm learns skills quickly, and a Commander’s patience can be rewarded with an excellent warrior.
Xian became a Herc warrior in the first Earthsiege after the Chinese island that was his home was vaporized in a Cybrid sneak attack. Xian was away at school, and was the only person of his village spared. He swore a blood oath against the Cybrids, and spent the rest of his short life tirelessly seeking their destruction. He was killed on his thirtieth birthday in a successful suicide attack against a Cybrid base.The Xian Bioderm has little tolerance for Stimgland.
Borok seemed a competent but unexceptional Herc warrior until fate threw his squad into combat along side a squad led by the not-yet-but-soon-to-be famous Tola, the greatest Herc Commander of all time. Both squads were pinned down by a Cybrid ambush during the of the Antarctic and suffered 80% casualties. Energy weapons were nearly depleted, and it seemed that Tola’s perfect combat record was going to come to a fatal end, when Borok’s skill with cannon turned the tide and allowed Tola to lead the survivors to a surprise victory. Grateful, Tola arranged to transfer Borok to his squad, making him second in command. Their careers were linked until Tola retired to enter politics.Borok occupies a special place in Tola lore. Physically huge, bald, almost monstrously ugly, his gruesome form hid a joyful, optimistic spirit, a fine sense of humor, a surprising intelligence, and a never-say-die attitude. If Tola was the mind and backbone of his commands, Borok was the strong and positive heart. With the exception of his unusual skill with cannon weapons, there were certainly better individual soldiers, but few better men to have as a comrade, and Tola knew how to use Borok’s abilities to their best advantage.The Borok Bioderms retain many of the positive attributes of their template, and many of his weaknesses. Borok is slow to learn the more advanced weapons and technologies. He is brilliant, however, in learning new cannon weapons. His great physical strength shrugs off the negative effects of Stimgland.
As a boy, Crow and his family were relocated to one of the “hidden cities” of the American southwest. Bitter about the forced move and the Cybrid invasion, he rejected his family’s spiritual ways and embraced technology. A restless and unhappy youth, he distanced himself from his parents and siblings until his parents were killed in a tunnel collapse. Devastated, he turned to a Shaman, seeking guidance. He came to know his spirit guide, and made peace with the spirits of his parents. The restless boy became a calm, determined warrior, entering the service as a Herc pilot. He was legendary for his strength, both of body and of spirit. Cool under fire, he was a source of inspiration to those around him. He later specialized as a scout, where his level-head and reasoned self-assurance served him well.The Crow Bioderm is still an excellent pilot and scout. Gifted with an exceptional ability to learn, he is especially adept at advanced technology. Crow's ancient spiritual beliefs can be unsettling to less-tolerant Commanders and Bioderms. He rarely uses Stimgland voluntarily, saying that it is “disturbing to the spirit,” and seems rarely to need it anyway.
Born on Greater America's Brazilian coast, Andra lost her family to the Cybrids at an early age. She joined a guerrilla group that fought, infantry against Cybrid Hercs, in the jungles of the Brazilian Rain-Forest Reserve. When the Hercs of the Pancho Villa Resistance Cell swept south, Andra joined and volunteered for pilot duty. After being sent north for training, she returned to her homeland, this time fighting the Cybrids Herc to Herc. She was an excellent pilot, and thanks to her time with the guerrillas, a master of stealth and surprise. Perhaps because she was orphaned in wartime, Andra was seen by many as cold and authoritative, but she did develop several strong friendships among outsiders who normally didn’t associate with others.As a Bioderm. Andra has great potential both as a warrior and a leader. She learns quickly in all areas, but is most comfortable with matter-energy conversion weapons, including Plasma devices and ELFs.
The original gained the nickname “Gunner” from his squad mates. It was said of him that he’d rather shoot than move. A team player, was never good with sensors or tech, depending on his squad-mates to help him find his targets. But Tarsus was the man to have in a fire-fight, good with missiles, a genius with cannon weapons, his Herc could often been seen in the center of the action as Tarsus calmly picked his shots.The Tarsus Bioderm is physically strong, but only of average intelligence. He is reliable and quick to follow orders. While he knows everything there is to know about cannon weapons, the Tarsus Bioderm learns missile skills and piloting at an above average rate.
Qabal was Maia’s twin, separated at an early age (the story of their early life, separation, and eventual reunion can be found under Maia’s listing). Qabal was adopted by a commune of nomadic scavengers and traders. For decades they wandered the outer solar system, dodging (and occasionally fighting) Cybrids, and supplying retrieved technology to the resistance. Intelligent and quick to learn, Qabal proved himself a great asset to his adopted family, but he longed to return to the front lines. He worked constantly to keep his body trim and in shape despite the low gravity on the salvage ship, and on his eighteenth birthday, he hitched a ride on a salvage freighter headed for Earth. As an outworlder, it was a struggle to be accepted in the military, but his skill and quick mind won him friends among his comrades, and the confidence of his commanding officers. His career was distinguished, but no more, until he was reunited with his sister at the Battle of Antarctica. It was as part of a team that he achieved his true potential.The Qabal Bioderm retains little, if any, of his donor’s personality due to his experimental origin. Qabal shared his sister’s mental acuity, which is evident in his nearly superhuman ability to learn new skills.
When the Cybrids overran the Indian peninsula, some of the few survivors escaped to experimental undersea bio-domes that were under development to house that region's excess population. After the Cybrids, overpopulation was the least of their problems, but the cities provided excellent bases to strike back at the Cybrids. The Dravidian domes were the first to develop sub-Hercs, special Hercs capable of rapid underwater travel, converting to a more conventional Herc mode for land combat. Complex, slow on land, and temperamental, the sub-Hercs were exceptionally demanding of their pilots. Jai was one of the best, as good at repairing and modifying his sub-Herc as he was at piloting it. Fatality rates for sub-Herc pilots was very high, and Jai completed a record 52 missions before being killed by a hull fracture while returning from his last victory.The Jai Bioderm learns quickly but is very susceptible to the negative effects of Stimgland. An effort to correct this somehow affected the protoplasm’s EMF generation capability, giving the Bioderm exceptional Command abilities. This has never been duplicated.
The south Asian tunnel cities fought a long and bitter struggle against the Cybrids. Born of the underclass, Ma-Yuan’s proud mother drove her to rise above her humble beginnings, pushing her to excel in schooling, and to hone her body and spirit in the martial arts. But Ma-Yuan soon realized that the only way out of the slum tunnels for an intelligent, ambitious young woman was through the military. She threw herself in and never looked back. She entered the Herc forces and soon distinguished herself in combat, becoming “point” for her squad, using her near surgical skill with energy weapons and missiles to break a path for the rest. The Ma-Yuan Bioderm learns quickly, retaining a special affinity for lasers and missiles.
was raised in the Asian districts of Greater America’s NorCal. He gained a reputation as a “clean Marine,” and a skilled warrior. He saw his life as having no value unless it was to serve others, and that is reflected in his record, decorated six times for his heroism. The bioderm’s inherited loyalty and dedication made him the ideal candidate for UNItech’s cybernetic experiments.
It is ironic that the mind of is once again at war with the Cybrids. not only fought the Cybrids, he helped to create them. As a young molecular programmer at Sentinel Cybertronics, added some of the last human refinements to Cybrids, perhaps the very ones that caused them to revolt. His role in the Cybrid overthrow was obscure to all but his closest co-workers, and they all had their own guilt to deal with, those few who had survived the Cybrid holocaust. safely sat out the conflagration inside Hard-Post Kansas, a buried military installation that later spawned the First Kansas Resistance. Perhaps it was not guilt felt, but a cold, hard rage that everything he had worked for had gone so terribly wrong. It was then he decided that, if he could no longer control the Cybrids with his consoles and programs, he could control them with fire and force.Rather than enter the military where he was known, volunteered as a courier on a dangerous overland trip to Carlsbad Deep, another surviving installation hidden far inside . Using a stripped down Herc armed with only a pair of light lasers, he made the trip in three days.
Purchasing a New Herc
As an Ensign, although you are allowed to command three Hercs, you only begin with 10,000 credits – barely enough to add to your fleet. The number of models you can access will broaden (as will the quantity you command) if you prove worthy to progress through the Commander Ranks. To effectively add to your Herc fleet, you should complete the Training mission and at least one mining mission first.
Click on a Herc from the list to display its configuration data. If the specs meet with your tactical requirements and you can afford it, add the Herc to your fleet. In the beginning (after the Training Mission) you will only be able to control four Hercs. You can add to your fleet if you progress in rank. See Career Status for a complete list of ranks.
Each Herc begins with a Reactor Rating (the power efficiency of its current reactor) and a Speed Rating (how quickly it can move as configured). Upgrades to the reactor will improve the Reactor Rating. Almost all changes to any devices or weapons will affect the Speed Rating. How this Speed Rating will be affected is indicated in every device and weapon description inside the Manage Hercs section of the .
Upgrading Your Hercs
There are (eventually) eight types of Hercs. Each one can be configured differently with different weapons, armor, drives, reactors, batteries, computers, shields, sensors, mining equipment, life support systems, and other devices. Click on the Herc you want to configure. From here, you can change or add weapons and devices. Click on any existing weapon, device, or Empty slot to see a list of other components that can be mounted there. Then click on any component name for its description. An important element of each description is how that component will affect the Herc’s Speed Rating (its ability to move quickly).
Each component also has a price. A negative price means that component has less value than what is already mounted to that particular hard point. A negative price will return that amount to your credit pool if purchased.This is also where you repair Hercs that have sustained battle damage. After you have selected a Herc, click on the Repair button and you will see options to repair only the Herc highlighted or the entire fleet. Choose what you can afford. Partial repairs can also be made while on the Battlefield if your Herc has a repair device mounted.You can re-name any Herc by clicking on its name in this screen (after you have first selected it).
SE 400 Laser
The Sierra Energy 400 is the smallest energy weapon carried on a Herc chassis. It has poor damage potential, but is cheap to install and maintain.
SE 660 Laser
This is the more powerful brother to the SE 400 and is a far more useful weapon. Both range and firepower are improved.
SE1000 Laser Cannon
The largest and most deadly of the standard lasers, the Sierra Energy 1000 can take down the shields of most Cybrids with just a few shots.
An energy weapon capable of firing indirectly to affect the shields of entire groups at once.
SC 400 Compression Laser
Sierra Combine Compression Laser technology uses magnetism to compress a light wave to amplify shock damage inflicted. The SC 400 is the smallest such weapon.
SC 1000 Compression Laser
Fully twice the size and power of the SC 400. This is, overall, one of the best energy weapons a Herc can carry.
SCX Compression Laser
This laser carries all of the shield-busting firepower of the EMP Cannon with the punch of a large missile. Expensive, but worth it.
SP 500 Light Pulse Laser
The third generation of laser technology, this is a rapid fire laser that improves on the earlier laser damage capability while delivering more shots.
SP 750 Standard Pulse Laser
A standard weapon on many Cybrids and Hercs. It is considered to be a superb balance of low cost and high energy.
SP1200 Magna Pulse Laser
The most devastating laser ever built, it is capable of defeating even the heaviest shielding with a burst of three shots.
SE 700 Laser Gatling
A rapid-fire version of the standard laser, that delivers a tremendous volume of deadly and accurate fire.
SP 800 Pulse Laser Gatling
A fast firing system, this weapon can absolutely devastate a unit by tearing through its shields to the armor below.
Light Compression Blaster
Combines the compression laser and fusion guns to render enemy shields almost useless.
Heavy Compression Blaster
The finest weapon ever made. Hercs equipped with the Heavy Compression Blaster can often lay waste to entire Cybrid squads…alone.
The first of the heavy energy weapons, the Plasma Cannon consumes huge amounts of energy, but delivers terrific blows to shields and armor.
Heavy Plasma Cannon
This is simply a twin cannon that shares a single barrel. The combined shot is terrifying and can often down an enemy Cybrid in a single blast.
A variant of the heavy plasma cannon that uses advanced technology to keep the emerging plasma from being dispersed, thereby increasing range.
Combines the usefulness of the Blast Mortar with the penetrating damage of plasma for a superior indirect fire weapon. na
A second generation of plasma technology that delivers a tremendous punch, especially against a foe that has lost its shields.
Though expensive and very power hungry, the Fusion Cannon can deliver in one gun what once took an entire Herc’s payload.
The most terrifying weapon ever designed, this delivers a single blast that will usually destroy any Cybrid.
Takes advanced fusion technology and applies it to the Plasma Mortar. It is without peer as an indirect energy weapon
A rapid-fire fusion cannon that can deal with shielded or unshielded targets with equal ease. It requires significant power.
SP Missile Launcher
A cheap, long-range missile launcher, the Self Propelled still inflicts massive damage on unshielded foes. The SP can fire indirectly.
SG Missile Launcher
The Self Guided improves on the SP’s capabilities with tremendous accuracy at long range. With a self-guidance package, the SG is a deadly weapon.
MY Rocket Launcher
The Minimum Yield uses a saturation missile system loaded with numerous mini-rockets to bombard an area three hexes in diameter.
Jihad Missile System
Developed originally as a “last resort weapon,” this missile launcher fires a huge single-shot missile that can devastate enemy units.
Micro Missile Launcher
This rapid-fire missile launcher requires no power and is cheap enough to carry on small Hercs. It cannot fire indirectly.
SP2 Heavy Missile Launcher
This is merely an advancement of the SP Missile Launcher that fires a more effective missile with twice the yield of the SP missile.
Katyusha-Z Rocket System
Named after an old-Earth weapon, this rocket launcher can cover a large area with rockets to damage numerous enemy units at once.
SPX Rapid Missile System
Continuing advancement of missile technology provides the capability to fire SP class missiles rapidly and accurately.
Saturation Missile Launcher
A more powerful version of the MY rockets, this system can devastate a large area with a single shot, which makes it a fearsome weapon.
Hunter-Killer Missile Launcher
The H-K Missiles track and home on their assigned target with relentless precision.
H-K Rapid Missile System
Firing slightly smaller versions of the fearsome Hunter-Killer missile, this weapon can deliver four missiles to a target in seconds.
Heavy Saturation Rocket System
This system essentially delivers the punch of the Hunter-Killer missiles over a wide area with a single firing.
HOG Missile Launcher
This acronym is short for “Hammer of God.” Though a last ditch weapon, none delivers a more powerful single blow.
Rapid Saturation Rocket System
Essentially a rapid-fire version of the SP-X using Saturation missiles.
This weapon does trivial damage, but has good rate-of-fire for sustained action. It takes no power, so the only limitation is ammo.
Though much better than the 20mm, this autocannon still does little overall damage and cannot penetrate shields.
This weapon fires massive 10kg slugs of depleted-uranium rapidly and accurately.
This weapon, known to its crews as “The Dragon,” is capable of chewing up small Cybrids at an amazing pace once their shields are down.
200mm HEAP Gun
This weapon fires a massive “High Explosive Armor Piercing” shell and does huge damage to unshielded targets.
40mm Ranger Cannon
This is the longest range gun in modern arsenals. It is extremely accurate at long range and can also damage shielded targets.
Fires a shotgun spread of tiny, electrically-charged flechettes that can defeat shields and penetrate armor.
Devastator Chain Gun
This terrifying weapon hurls huge numbers of 30mm shells at opposing units. Though not long range, this weapon is VERY powerful.
260mm Auto Mortar
This weapon is an advanced auto mortar that can deliver several shots of indirect fire rapidly to a target.
210mm X-HEAP Cannon
Combines the advanced range-finding system of the Ranger cannon with the firepower of the 210mm HEAP Gun for a lethal weapon.
90mm Accelerator Cannon
This system requires no real finesse as it can deal with any target, shielded or not. An excellent weapon though it is both power and ammo hungry.
100mm Accelerator Chain Gun
Near the top of kinetic weapon development, with average range, tremendous rate-of-fire, and excellent firepower.
This weapon utilizes a super-heavy metal shell accelerated to tremendous speeds and launched. It knows no equal.
Electron Flux Weapons
Light ELF Whip
The ELF is a powerful weapon that delivers an electrostatic charge. It penetrates shields to deliver full damage.
Medium ELF Whip
A more powerful version of the Light ELF, it delivers a greater electrostatic charge.
Heavy ELF Whip
The Heavy ELF Whip delivers a huge electrostatic charge and is nearly twice as powerful as the Light ELF.
This is simply an ELF system that is equipped with multiple capacitors to allow rapid recharge for a second or third shot.
The Chain ELF is a more advanced form of the Auto-ELF that can fire a multiple stream of ELF shots to inflict horrific damage on a target.
A dangerous weapon due to the inherent ability of an ELF to ignore shielding, the ELF Mortar can deliver ELF damage over distance and blast area.
Advanced Technology Weapons
Uses a pulse of electromagnetic radiation to seriously damage shields with a single shot.
Harnesses the power of EMP radiation to project an electromagnetic pulse that inflicts huge damage on shields.
Particle Beam Weapon
Based on particle beam technology, this weapon can crush the shields of a Cybrid or destroy the machine beneath.
Light Particle Gun
The LPG incorporates some of the advantages of both an autocannon and a laser. A very balanced and useful weapon.
Medium Particle Gun
Draws twice the reactor power for only a modest increase in firepower and is difficult to mount on a light chassis.
Heavy Particle Gun
An even greater power hog than the MPG. Avoid mounting on all but the heaviest chassis.
Super Heavy Particle Gun
The largest in the series, requires the most power, and does the most damage.
Neutron Beam Weapon
A variant of the Neutron Gun that uses a different technology. The resulting beam can punch through shields or armor
Fires a heavier particle to disrupt matter at a molecular level. Against an unshielded Cybrid, it is devastating.
An outgrowth of plasma technology that can burn through Cybrid shields and armor in seconds.
Essentially a plasma machine gun that ignores shields completely and, with enough sustained power, can shred a Cybrid.
The most advanced version of an EMP weapon that can destroy shields in moments. Most often used in conjunction with advanced missiles.
The Accelerator Thermal Needler ignores shielding completely and delivers powerful hits in rapid succession.
The Juggernaut is a walking fortress with long-range weapons capabilities. When this Herc arrives at its target, the battle is pretty much over. Standard Equipment: Crystal Matrix Sensor, a Ion 420 reactor, Lock-On 100 targeting computer, Shield 1500 shield class, Chemical 390 battery, Integrated Environment Life Support, Didrate 35cm armor, and a Pre-Flexive drive system. The Juggernaut is unlimited in regard to weapon upgrades. Available at Tech level 9.
Almost every weapon type can be represented on the Reaper. It was designed to take advantage of advances in Bioderm technology. The Reaper allows the best Bioderms to respond with technology appropriate to any situation. Standard equipment: Crystal Matrix Sensor, a Fission 350 reactor, Lock-On 100 targeting computer, Shield 1200 shield class, Chemical 330 battery, Improved Life Support, Didrate 28cm armor, Pre-Flexive drive system, a jump capability of one, and lesser movement yield. Available at Tech level 6.
The Demon was created with the Ogre’s design in mind. Missile pods replaced cannons. The quadruple energy attack was kept, but equipped with larger weapons. A larger chassis was needed to support the larger weapons. The result, though slower than the Ogre, possesses even greater potential to fulfill its design objective: to punch through the enemy’s shields and deliver massive damage. Standard equipment: Standard Sensor 15.1 Amplitude, a Fission 300 reactor, Bertrand-Altase targeting computer, Shield 1200 shield class, Chemical 300 battery, Standard Life Support, 22cm armor, and a Pre-Flexive drive system. Available at Tech level 3.
The Giant is outfitted almost exclusively with ballistic (Cannon) weapons. It is best used in tandem with an energy-weapon Herc like the Ogre. Standard equipment: Standard Sensor 15.1 Amplitude, a Fission 200 reactor, Bertrand-Altase targeting computer, Shield 1200 shield class, Chemical 180 battery, Standard Life Support, 18cm armor, and a Pre-Flexive drive system. This specialized configuration enables the Giant to devote its energy to movement and still deliver a deadly attack. It is recommended that this Herc be used in tandem with those that attack with energy weapons. Available at Tech level 1.
Both the Ogre and the Giant are the backbone of the modern Herc force. The Ogre has enough energy-based attacks to break through many types of shielding and still deliver a double ballistic salvo. It’s the most independent Herc available to the Unit Leader. Standard equipment: Standard Sensor 12.14 Amplitude, a Fission 200 reactor, Bertrand-Altase targeting computer, Shield 900 shield class, Chemical 180 battery, Standard Life Support, 18cm armor, Pre-Flexive drive system, a jump capability of one, and medium movement yield. Available at Tech level 1.
The Sensei is what the Shadow should have been: bigger, tougher, and more weapon types. It was designed with the Command Bioderm in mind. It offers speed, sensors, varied weapons, and some protection. Standard Equipment: Scout Sensor 22.8 Amplitude, a Fission 150 reactor, Bertrand-Altase targeting computer, Shield 600 shield class, Chemical 150 battery, Standard Life Support, 11cm armor, Pre-Flexive drive system, a jump capability of two, and secondary movement yield. Available at Tech level 1.
The Remora was initially designed as an escort vehicle for the heavier Hercs. Since the Remora’s deployment at the beginning of the third Cybrid War, it has proven especially useful as a fast assault Herc. Some Herc Commanders have successfully equipped the Remora with mining pods to capitalize on its speed for mining in hazardous conditions. Standard Equipment: Standard Sensor 7.22 Amplitude, a Fission 100 reactor, Bertrand-Altase targeting computer, Shield 300 shield class, Chemical 108 battery, Standard Life Support, 5cm armor, Pre-Flexive drive system, a jump capability of three and a secondary movement yield. Available at Tech level 0.
The Shadow was originally intended to be an exploration vehicle. It is one of two Hercs with an extensive sensor array. Sensor arrays allow broad terrain mapping and remote targeting of the enemy. Since being pressed into military service, the Shadow has been outfitted with energy weapons and missile pods. Standard Equipment: Scout Sensor 22.8 Amplitude, a Fission 100 reactor, Bertrand-Altase targeting computer, Shield 300 shield class, Chemical 108 battery, Standard Life Support, 5cm armor, Pre-Flexive drive system, a jump capability of four, and maximum movement yield. Available at Tech level 0.
This record of your achievements in rank is continually updated to reflect your progress. Be aware that this information is also monitored by the Corporation. Among other things, it shows you the number of Hercs and Bioderms you currently control, as well as the maximum number you are allowed to control. If you are not maximizing your command, and you have the credits to do so, then this information tells you where you may be shorting yourself.
Your rank is also shown here. This ranking is the sign of your success in the Cyberstorm universe. You begin with the “pre-rank” of Ensign. If you successfully progress through missions, you are rewarded with promotions. Each promotion carries with it a title advancement. You also add to your Herc fleet and Unique Bioderms are placed under
your command. At the sixth level, you will rescue a Unique Bioderm who will also join your forces.
You must have at least one Herc purchased, and one Bioderm created and linked to that Herc before you will be able to set out to complete a mission.
Choose Select Mission from inside the for assignment to your next mission. To begin with, there are three Star Systems within the Cyberstorm Universe. Your first assignment is to the Paracelsus System. You will not be able to access the Ionis and M138 systems at first, as they are only for the more experienced Ranks. Each System has a set number of planets. Paracelsus has seven. Notice the 3-D diagram of the system on the overhead monitor in the Select Mission center. When you highlight a mission, you also highlight the planet or moon where it takes place.
There are several mission types:
- Quick Assault
- Elite Military
When you complete a mission, it is replaced with a mission on another planet or a regenerated mission on the same planet. You will still have the previous eight missions as options. It is possible for you as a Commander to conduct hundreds of missions within the same System, but this is obviously not recommended. The more missions you successfully complete and the more Cybrids you take out in doing so, the more hostile future missions in the same Star System become.
Also, some missions are only offered once, and disappear from the list if not selected. Location and destruction of the Cybrid Base becomes your Elite Mission. The Cybrid Base for Paracelsus and Ionis must be destroyed before you will be allowed access to the next system.
When you select your mission, you will receive a briefing along with information about that specific planet. You may accept, or cancel and select another mission.