Aliens Online (AO)

Mythic Entertainment Aliens Online README Version 1.11 Updated 2/25/98 OVERVIEW Aliens Online (AO) is an online-only game based o...

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Mythic Entertainment Aliens Online README Version 1.11 Updated 2/25/98

OVERVIEW

Aliens Online (AO) is an online-only game based on the 1986 film "Aliens" from 20th Century Fox. The game's story line revolves around the ongoing conflict between the forces of humanity and an unnamed race of alien beings simply dubbed "aliens." In AO, this conflict manifests itself in running battles throughout human-controlled space between the forces of humanity and the aliens. The settings for these battles are inhabited planets, space stations, and space vehicles. In AO, the online player can assume the role of either an alien or a human and engage both in cooperative, campaign-style matches as well as in solo-type missions.

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Mythic Entertainment
Aliens Online README
Version 1.11
Updated 2/25/98


OVERVIEW

Aliens Online (AO) is an online-only game based on the
1986 film "Aliens" from 20th Century Fox.  The game's
story line revolves around the ongoing conflict between
the forces of humanity and an unnamed race of alien beings
simply dubbed "aliens."  In AO, this conflict manifests
itself in running battles throughout human-controlled
space between the forces of humanity and the aliens.  The
settings for these battles are inhabited planets, space
stations, and space vehicles.  In AO, the online player can
assume the role of either an alien or a human and engage
both in cooperative, campaign-style matches as well as in
solo-type missions.


SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS 

Operating system: Windows 95
CPU type and speed: Pentium 90 or better
Hard-drive space: 20 MB
Memory: 16 MB RAM or better
Sound: 16-bit sound card
Video: 2 MB
Modem: 14,400 baud


INSTALL/UPDATE FROM DOWNLOAD

GameStorm has an automated updating, download, 
and installation procedure. You must have  
installed the GameStorm software before you 
can start playing the games. You can install the 
software from the GameStorm CD, or you can get 
it at www.gamestorm.com.

Once you have installed the GameStorm software,
all individual game software can be  
automatically downloaded, installed, and updated.  
To start this procedure, go to the "Play" page  
for the game of your choice.  The  game can be 
quickly located on GameStorm by going to  
www.gamestorm.com.  Select "Members" and then 
select "Aliens Online" from the pull-down  
menus.  Also, you can get to the Aliens Online 
play page by going to 
www.gamestorm.com/actionandstrategy/aliensonline.

Press the "Play" button to begin an automatic 
download and installation of the software.  Once
it is done installing or updating, GameStorm will 
launch the game. 

Note that the initial downloads of some games can 
be quite lengthy, so you might want to install 
the game from a CD.

If you are unable to play the game at this point, 
see Installation Troubleshooting, below.


INSTALL FROM CD

To install the game from the CD,  insert the disc
into your CD player. Windows 95 will bring up 
the installer automatically.  

Make sure you install the GameStorm software. Then
install the game you wish to play and  
follow the instructions.  After you have completed 
the installation, go to the Aliens Online play  
page at www.gamestorm.com/actionandstrategy/aliensonline.

Click on "Play." You will be prompted to find the 
directory where the game executable is  
installed.  Normally, it is in c:\gamestrm\aliens. GameStorm may
perform a small download to update the game before it launches.

If you are unable to play the game at this point, 
see Installation Troubleshooting, below.

Aliens Online requires Direct X 3.0 or higher, 
which is a set of programs produced by Microsoft 
that allows game developers to create faster 
and better games for Windows 95.
	
The GameStorm software will search your system 
for the needed version of DirectX, and will 
download the appropriate files if an update 
to your DirectX installation is needed, or if you have 
no version of DirectX at all.  If it does download 
DirectX to your system, the DirectX installation 
will begin after the game installation is completed.
	
Note: After installing DirectX to your system, your
machine must reboot. This will be handled automatically.
 

INSTALLATION TROUBLESHOOTING
 
If you accidentally delete some files, or files 
become corrupted in your Aliens Online 
installation, the GameStorm software will 
not know it, and the game launch may fail.  
This is very easy to fix, however.  If you have 
repeated game launch failures, do the following:
 
A)  Using Windows Explorer or File Manager, 
locate the installation directory of Aliens Online. 
Open this folder.
 
B)  Delete all files that have the extension .mft.
 
C)  Return to the Aliens Online launch page, 
and hit the "Play" link.
 
The GameStorm software will know that the game 
is installed, but will not find the manifest 
files, so it will download new copies of the 
manifest files from the host (this will take 
just a few seconds). Then it will begin verifying 
the contents of your Aliens Online installation. 
Specifically, it checks to see that each and 
every file listed in the manifest files is 
present on your machine, and intact. If it 
finds files missing or damaged, it will 
automatically download new versions of these 
files, install them in the correct locations, 
and launch the game.


GETTING MORE HELP

If you have trouble playing the game, 
there are several sources from which you may find the 
answers you need.

FAQ File
********
The file, found in your root Aliens Online directory, 
contains the most frequently encountered 
problems and their solutions. 

Message Boards
*************
For the best support for technical problems, 
read the Technical Support message boards for 
Aliens Online.

E-mail
*****
E-mail help is available at help@gamestorm.com. 
Please indicate the game you are playing and 
the exact nature of the problem you are having, 
as well as any error messages you have encountered. 

Other Documents
************** 
The following documents are available to help 
familiarize the user with the game and its 
community.

Readme
Covers installations and connection procedures, 
as well as troubleshooting tips.

Quick Start
A brief guide to getting started in the game, 
as well as common keyboard commands.

Rules of Conduct
Rules of online behavior and courtesy to be 
followed by all players.  

Manuals
Detailed information on how to play the game, 
plus some play tips. 
 
************************************************************
Aliens Online Rules of Conduct and Policies
Modified 3/12/98 
Version ROCAL98
************************************************************


The following represents the policies under which players
may participate in Aliens Online.  Gamestorm's rules of 
conduct will be enforced at all times. Please read these 
policies and adhere to them. Violation of the rules can 
result in the permanent lockout of your account from the game.


********
Offenses
********

Abusive Behavior
----------------
Aliens Online is a social game, and much of the fun and
excitement comes from interaction among players. To a
certain extent, it is up to the players to decide what
behavior is reasonable and what is unreasonable within the
game community. 

However, bad language, harassment, personal threats, and
other offensive behaviors are not condoned. Friendly
rivalries are a large part of the game, but players are
expected to remain civil to one another at all times. There
is no need or excuse for personal attacks on the boards or
in the game (note that this refers to personal attacks in
the form of vehement and/or abusive social contact, not
player vs. player combat in the game). Offenders will be
subject to the penalties described below, unless all players
present have previously agreed this is acceptable behavior.

To report a player who is demonstrating abusive behavior,
type *COMPLAINT<return>.  (This command available in 
Version 1.11 and all following versions.)  A record of 
the last chat you have seen will be sent to Kesmai Product 
Support.  You can also contact a staff assistant (their names 
are in yellow).


Character Names
---------------
Obscene or offensive handles will not be tolerated.
Players who refuse to abide by this rule will be
subject to the penalties described below.

The following character combinations, and those which
Aliens Online staff members deem similar enough, are
reserved for official use only. Any player observed using
any of these combinations, or similar ones, in such a way as
might cause confusion to other players, is subject to the
penalties below.

     Aliens Helper;
     Alien, or Aliens Online, or any similar combination
     ARIES;
     GameStorm;
     Kesmai;


In addition, GameStorm strongly discourages players from
deliberately impersonating another player. At the discretion
of the observing staff member, players impersonating other
players for the purpose of slander or deprecation of character
are subject to the penalties below.


Bug Abuse & Cheating
--------------------
Bug abuse disrupts the game and lessens the enjoyment of the
game for everyone. Any effort to employ game bugs,
circumvent restrictions on game play, or otherwise use non-
game features or other programs to your advantage in Aliens
Online is not allowed; violators will be subject to the
penalties described below.

All bugs should be reported so that we can fix them.  If you
observe someone else abusing a serious bug, please report it
to Aliens Online Product Support by sending a letter to 
aliens_support@kesmai.com.


Game and Room Disruption
------------------------
It is unacceptable to interfere with other players' enjoyment
of the game.  This includes, but is not limited to:

screen scrolling
intentional Marine killing of other Marines
   (also known as PK or playerkilling)
any form of improper discussion (eg discussion of illegal 
  activities)



Miscellaneous
-------------
Players discovered to be playing on an account registered to
a fraudulent or incorrect name, address, or billing method
will be immediately locked out.

Aliens Online is not to be used as a venue for the
promotion of competing products or services.  Individuals
who actively promote competing products or services within
Aliens Online will be subject to the penalties described
below.

GameStorm reserves the right to make special-case
adjustments to its policies and its actions concerning
violation of these policies.


*********
Penalties
*********

Anyone found to be in violation of the rules of conduct
described in this document, at the sole determination of
GameStorm, including any and all Aliens Online staff
members, will be subject to the following:

  1.   First violation:  The player will receive a warning,
     either within the game or via e-mail, describing his/her
     alleged breach of policy.
  2.   Second violation:  The player will be locked out of
     Aliens Online for a period of up to one month, and will be
     notified via e-mail.
  3.   Third violation:  The player will be locked out of
     Aliens Online permanently.

If the player has more than one account, all accounts, on
all services, will be simultaneously subject to the above
actions.

In certain circumstances, such as extremely abusive
behavior, modifying the software, and so forth, a player
will be locked out without warning or notice of any kind at
the discretion of the acting staff member. However, Aliens
Online Product Support will follow up with an e-mail
explaining why this step was taken.

In addition, the staff assistants in the game are empowered to 
take such steps as they see fit to encourage a player to alter
their behavior. Assistants are allowed to destroy or eject
an offending player, and usually will make a reasonable attempt
to get offending players to alter their behavior before
official Kesmai action becomes necessary. (In other words,
the assistants are, in fact, your first line of defense against
having official disciplinary action taken against you.)


************************
Aliens Online Assistants
************************

Game staff designated with yellow names in game rosters
are empowered by Kesmai to warn or eject an offending player
who is violating these Rules of Conduct.  All appeals to
actions taken by an assistant should be e-mailed directly to 
aliens_support@kesmai.com. 


************************
Policies and Disclaimers
************************

Aliens Online is presented on an "as is" basis.  Usage of
the Aliens Online product indicates acceptance of this,
and any risk that may imply.

GameStorm is not obligated to credit a player (with battles,
service points, rank, etc.) if his/her usage is interrupted
by a software failure.

GameStorm's sole obligation is to make a reasonable effort
to fix a software problem or to return service as quickly as
possible (except in cases where the service interrupt is not
related to the Aliens Online product itself).


Chat/Event Logging
------------------
It is standard operating procedure for Aliens Online to log
all chat and significant events that occur within the game.
These files are completely confidential except when violations
of a service's terms of service require they be delivered to
the service provider as proof of a charge in a disciplinary
measure.


Game Mechanics
--------------
GameStorm reserves the right to issue modifications to the
game at any time, with or without notice.  GameStorm will
routinely add new features, modify existing features, and
alter additions or revisions that did not function as
expected. These changes may affect your character in a
variety of ways. If you feel that the change unfairly
penalizes your character, given the requirements of balance,
challenge, and the general good of the game, then you may
make your views known to Aliens Online Product Support. It
should be understood, however, that GameStorm maintains a
longer-range view that may be in conflict with short-term
and character-specific interests. GameStorm will always
attempt to make the best decision for the overall good of
the game.


Transferring Characters
-----------------------
Under no circumstances will GameStorm transfer an existing
character from one online service to another online service.
If you decide to switch online services, you will have to
create a new character for the new service. Even within the
same service, characters cannot be transferred from one
account to another.


Character Purges
----------------
Inactive characters may be purged from the database to make
room for active characters.

GameStorm reserves the right to remove players from
positions of authority in the game if they have been found
to be abusing said authority, or detracting from others'
enjoyment of the game, as determined by GameStorm and the
Aliens Online staff.

************************Frequently Asked Questions************************
Aliens Online  Version 1.11
3/13/98
-------------------------------


BEFORE YOU PLAY

Q: What is Aliens Online?
A: Aliens Online (AO) is an online-only game based on the
  1986 film "Aliens" from 20th Century Fox.  The game's
  story line revolves around the ongoing conflict between
  the forces of humanity and an unnamed race of alien beings
  simply dubbed "aliens."  In AO, this conflict manifests
  itself in running battles throughout human-controlled
  space between the forces of humanity and the aliens.  The
  settings for these battles are inhabited planets, space
  stations, and space vehicles.  In AO, the online player can
  assume the role of either an alien or a human and engage
  both in cooperative, campaign-style matches and in solo-
  type missions.


Q: What are the minimum system requirements needed to play
   Aliens Online?
A: You should have a 90Mhz Pentium processor or better, 16 MB or
   more RAM, a modem capable of 14,400 baud or better, and a
   video card with 2 MB of video memory. Also suggested is a
   16-bit sound card for them face-huggin' sounds o' doom.

Q: Where do I find full instructions on the game?
A: The Aliens Online manual is not yet available.  We hope
   you'll find answers to your questions in this FAQ, the
   Readme document, and the Quick-Play Guide. For help within the game
   click on help in the tactical menu from the main marine page and
   main hive page.

Q: What is the objective of the game?
A: In this version, there is only one type of mission: eradication. 
   The objective of the eradication mission is to totally cleanse
   a mission arena of aliens. Each worker, face-hugger, and, of
   course, the queen must be killed before the mission is considered
   a success.  If you are a Colonial Marine in an eradication mission, 
   your game screen will include an area that  keeps track of how
   many workers and face-huggers remain in the colony.  It also will
   tell you if the queen is still alive. As soon as the final alien
   has been killed, the triumphant Marines will be taken to a victory
   screen.


PLAYING AS A MARINE

Q: Where do I begin?
A: As a new player, simply follow the on-screen dialogs and
  flashing control buttons, which will lead you from the Alien
  Gateway Station (the AGS, a floating space station, is the first
  screen you encounter) to the lockers, to the character generation
  screen (where you create your character), to the Staging Area,
  from which you deploy to a mission arena.   


Q: How do I create a character?
A: To create a Colonial Marine character, click on Lockers
  at the Alien Gateway Station (the AGS, a floating space
  station, is the first screen you encounter).  The next
  screen you see contains three "cryopods," each a holder
  for a Colonial Marine character.  Initially, you will not
  have a Marine character. To create one, double-click on a
  pod.  This takes you to the creation screen, where you
  should enter a name for your new character.  Then choose a
  gender and physical appearance -- choosing
  from among the choice of heads and different color
  combinations for torso and legs.
  
  Marine skills have now been implemented. When a Marine 
  character is created, an additional creation step is required:
  Pick skill. The character will choose a specialty when
  creating his Marine: heavy weaponry, medical, scout, or 
  combat infantry. Heavy weaponry will get smartgun skill.   
  Medical will get med-skill. Scout will get motion detector  
  and flamer skill. Combat infantry will get computer skills  
  and demolition skills. These skills will increase as the 
  character rises in rank. There are currently eight contemplated 
  levels (ranks) - private, private first class, lance corporal,
  corporal, sergeant, staff sergeant, gunnery sergeant and 2nd  
  lieutenant. Marine skills (strength, etc.) now affect game play. 
  Strength will affect total weight that can be carried. Dexterity
  will affect speed. Intelligence will affect medical and computer
  skills. Stamina will affects both hits and fatigue. Once you have
  selected your Marine's physical appearance and skills, click the
  Save button and return to the AGS for game action.


Q: How many characters can I have at any one time?
A: You may create up to three Colonial Marine characters --
  one for each pod.  Select your Marine by clicking on the
  appropriate cryopod and then on the Exit button at the
  bottom right corner of the screen.


Q: Are characters persistent?
A: No matter which side you choose for your character(s) --
  that of the Marines or of the aliens -- your characters
  will be persistent for as long as you play AO (with the
  occasional purging of user accounts after prolonged
  periods of inactivity).


Q: How do I switch characters?
A: To switch characters, simply return to the lockers area
  of the Alien Gateway Station, and click on the cryopod
  of the character you wish to select.  Then click on the
  Staging button at the bottom of the screen.


Q: What do I do once I've created a character?
A: Once you have created a character, click on the Staging
  Area of the Alien Gateway Station.  This is your starting
  point for entering the action.


Q: What are mission arenas?
A: A "mission arena" can be described as the location or
  environment in which a mission takes place.  At present,
  there are five arenas available, including the LV426B
  colony, and Zeta 4, a derelict space station.  Other
  arenas include an agricultural colony, a mining
  colony, and a space  freighter.  Each arena has its own
  unique geographical and/or structural layout.


Q: Do mission arenas vary in difficulty?
A: Certain arenas are more complex in layout, and some
  arenas may be designated as open to new players only.
  At this point, all arenas are open to all players. 
  However, the other players in the arena are the most
  telling indicators of the difficulty. The better the other
  players, the more difficult the arena.

Q: What are fire teams?
A: The Colonial Marines in Aliens Online are organized into
  fire teams of two to four Marines.  Members of a fire team
  enter a mission arena together. You do not have to belong
  to a fire team to go on a mission. From the Missions
  screen, you may choose to Enter the mission.  You will see
  a notice that you are entering "unattached to a fire team"
  and, therefore, cannot earn medals or experience from this
  match, nor will you be equipped with many of the weapons
  available to members of fire teams.


Q: If I opt to fight alone, not as part of a fire team, what
  differences in game play will I notice?
A: If a Colonial Marine player goes into a match without
  being attached to a fire team, his penalty is that he can
  use only the pulse rifle, handgun, shotgun, and motion detector.
  We are trying to encourage fire-team play as much as possible, and
  having this penalty is one way to enforce that.
  

Q: How do I become part of a fire team?
A: Upon arrival in the Staging Area, notice three buttons --
  Missions, Tables, and Fire Teams -- at the top of the
  screen.  The Missions button should be highlighted,
  meaning you are at the Missions screen.  If one of the
  other buttons is highlighted, click on Missions to go to
  the Missions screen.  Appearing immediately beneath the
  Missions button is a list of available mission arenas.
  Click on the arena of your choice.  Now notice, about the
  middle of the screen, a button labeled Show.  Click Show.
  This pulls up a briefing screen, which includes a map and
  some information about the mission.  Also on this screen
  is a list of current fire teams assigned to this mission.
  Select the fire team you wish to join. You can join only
  a team that is still in the Staging Area and has not
  proceeded to Pre-Launch. After selecting a team, hit the
  Join FT button. Now you must wait for the team commander
  to bring his unit into the Pre-Launch area.


Q: How do I start my own fire team?
A: Upon arrival in the Staging Area, notice three buttons --
  Missions, Tables, and Fire Teams -- at the top of the
  screen.  The Missions button should be highlighted,
  meaning you are at the Missions screen.  If one of the
  other buttons is highlighted, click on Missions to go to
  the Missions screen.  Appearing immediately beneath the
  Missions button is a list of available mission arenas.
  Click on the arena of your choice.  Now notice, about the
  middle of the screen, a button labeled Show.  Click Show.
  This pulls up a briefing screen, which includes a map and
  some information about the mission.  Also on this screen
  is a list of current fire teams assigned to this mission.
  Click the New FT button to create your fire team.  As
  creator of the team, you are its commander and have the
  option to either disband the unit or proceed to the Pre-
  Launch area.


Q: How do I chat with other players?
A: "Talking" with other characters in the Staging Area is
  accomplished through typing messages to them. You may type
  a line of text to one person, or to a whole group of
  people at once.
  
  To chat with the entire group of Colonial Marines in the
  Staging Area, just type what you want to say in the "chat
  entry" area at the bottom of the Staging Area screen.
  Whatever you type will be broadcast verbatim to the entire
  group.  Please note that you must hit <'> (apostrophe/quote key)
  to begin chatting.

  To talk to one person (whisper), use </> (slash key) in
  the format:
  
  / (player name) (text)
  
  For example,
  
  / fructus Do you want to go to the station or the colony?
  
  will send a private message to a character named Fructus.
  
  From the Staging Area, you also can create a chat "table"
  so you can hold a conversation with a few people without
  having to "listen" to everyone else.  Click the Tables
  button at the top of the screen to view all current chat
  tables.  You can either select an existing table and join
  it, or create a new one.  If you have created a table, you
  also may delete it.
  
  When you are on a mission, the chat window is at the
  bottom of the screen, just as it is in the Staging Area.
  This window shows you which teammates are chatting, and
  allows you to respond. You must hit <'> (apostrophe/quote
  key) to get into chat mode, and once you have typed your
  message, you must hit <Enter> to post your message for
  others to see.  If you wish to send another line of
  message, you must begin again by hitting <'>.


Q: How does my character develop?
A: You start out as a buck private (Pvt.). After a few
  successful missions, you may move up to private first
  class (Pfc.), then to lance corporal (LCpl.) and so on.
  Because AO  is a fire team-level game, you  will not be
  able to rise beyond the rank of lieutenant.
  
  Players move upward in rank by accumulating service points
  (SPs). The more service points you accumulate, the higher
  your rank.  Service points are awarded according to
  mission difficulty and your performance while on the
  mission.  For example, if you disobey orders, you will not
  receive as many SP's as your fellow fire-team member who
  follows orders and fulfills the mission objectives.
  Points are awarded to each team member for team
  accomplishments and for individual accomplishments.  When
  you have accumulated enough service points to become a
  corporal, you will be expected to lead a fire team; when
  you attain the rank of sergeant, you may choose to become
  a squad leader, coordinating the movements of all fire
  teams in the mission.

Q: What happens if my character dies?
A: Fortunately, dying while on a mission does not mean your
  character is gone forever.  Once you have reached the rank
  of corporal, the Corps will preserve your DNA in case the
  worst happens (and it frequently does) so that you can be
  cloned to rejoin the battle.  When you die in Aliens
  Online, a small window appears mid-screen informing you of
  your tragic demise.  Now you have the option of either
  hanging around as a ghost to watch the cat-and-mouse
  carnage, getting right back into the action through the
  miracle of regeneration by DNA cloning, or leaving the
  game altogether.  To do either of the latter two, click
  Leave Mission.  A screen appears showing regeneration
  tubes.  To regenerate and jump back into the fray, hit any
  key on the keyboard.  To leave the game, hit <Esc>.
  
  You will lose all SPs and skills gained since the DNA
  sample was taken, but you will emerge reasonably intact.
  However, there is a limit to the number of clonings you
  may undergo before the Corps will insist that you retire
  honorably.  Once retired, your character will be entered
  into the Hall of Honor, never to fight again.

Q: How do I maneuver my character in mission arenas?
A: Movement during mission play can be accomplished in one
  of two ways: the mouse or the keyboard. The following
  lists the default key configuration; however, you may
  reconfigure these key commands by clicking on Tactical
  from the AGS screen.

  Up arrow                       Move forward
  Down arrow                     Move backward
  Right arrow                    Move right
  Left arrow                     Move left
  Q                              Strafe left (Marine)
  W                              Strafe right (Marine)
  Left shift+(directional        Run
   arrow or mouse movement)
  1 - 4                          Select weapon or motion detector
  Enter (default), Ctrl,         Fire weapon (Marine) / attack (alien)
   or left click
  Spacebar                       Open door / activate elevator
                                
  
  Z                              Crouch or crawl
  T                              Torch (toggles on/off)
  A                              Jump
  ' (apostrophe)                 Chat
  M                              Mouse mode (toggles on/off)
  
  S                              Look up
  X                              Look down
  D                              Center view
  R                              Reload (Marine)
  K                              Heal (use a medkit - Marine)
  B                              Assume, or "bounce" to, another alien
                                 body (alien)
  Escape                         Quit
  
  Using the mouse, the following movements are supported:
  Left button                Fire weapon (Marine) / attack (alien)
  Right button               Move forward
  Move mouse                 Move in specified direction
  Double right click         Switch between mouse mode and keyboard
   
  
Q: Can I run as well as walk?
A: Yes, you can run by holding down left <Shift> while using
   your directional arrow or moving your mouse.


Q: Is it better to be in mouse mode or keyboard mode?  Is
  there any advantage to moving between the two?
A: It is almost entirely a matter of preference. Some find
  the mouse to be more responsive, and some find the
  keyboard to be more precise. Experiment to discover your
  preference.


Q: Once I'm in a mission arena, how do I know where to go?
A: If you are part of a fire team, your team leader will
  tell you.  Otherwise, you can hit <7> to bring up your
  motion detector.  The red dots tell you where you will
  find aliens; blue dots indicate other Marines.  Use the
  motion detector only as needed, though, because it
  obstructs your view.  Also, you cannot hold a weapon while
  using the motion detector.


Q: What weapons do I have, and how do I use them?
A: As a Colonial Marine, you have an arsenal of weapons to
  choose from:

  Pulse rifle              Standard three-burst weapon of the
                           Colonial Marines.
  Grenade launcher         Same as pulse rifle, but uses grenade
                           launcher barrel. Lots of damage.
  
  Pistol                   A last-ditch weapon when the enemy is in
                           close! Has a short range and does
                           relatively little damage.  A plus is that
                           the Marines' body armor stops the
                           rounds from the pistol, so you cannot
                           hurt your buddies with it!
  
  Flamethrower             Self-explanatory.  Hose 'em down!
  
  Smart gun                Large and deadly.  However, heavy and
                                       difficult to aim.
  
  Shotgun                  Non-standard issue, but particularly
                           effective on face-huggers.


  Note, however, that if you fight alone, and not as part of
  a fire team, you can use only the pulse rifle, handgun, and
  shotgun.


Q: As fire team leader, do I have an advantage in weapons?
A: The fire team leader never has the best weapons.  Instead,
  he directs his fire team as if it were one weapon, using
  the different weapons possessed by his teammates. 
 

Q: Is there such thing as weapons training?
A: Lock and load. This is trial by fire. 

Q: Why would I choose one weapon over another?
A: Weapons vary in weight, ammo load, and damage.  

Q: What kind of ammunition and health inventory do I have?
A: Marines now have pulldown inventory screen accessed via 
  the F9 key (configurable) or the onscreen button.  The 
  screen pulls down over the player list to the left of the 
  screen.  Icons appear in the windows for each of the weapons
  the marine is carrying, for all of the ammo (eight clips per to 
  start) and for the medkits (four medkits to start).  The player 
  can double-click on a weapon to change weapons, on ammo to 
  reload the current weapon, or on the medkit to use the medkit.
  The "R" hot key (configurable) reloads the currently held weapon,
  and the "K" key (configurable) uses a medkit.  A player also can
  take on additional ammo and medkits by stripping them off the bodies
  of fallen comrades. To do so, walk over the body and hit the
  spacebar. You will receive screen notification that you have picked
  up the additional ammo or medkits -- unless somebody has beaten you
  to it.

Q: How can I switch weapons?
A: You can switch weapons either by hitting the numbered
  key associated with the weapon, or by pressing F9 to open
  your inventory window, then double-clicking on the icon of
  the weapon you wish to use. The inventory window also can be
  toggled on and off with the on-screen "Inventory" button.


Q: How can I improve my chances of surviving an alien
  attack?
A: Work together. Cover each other and keep moving. If you
  get hit, MOVE! Learn to aim in directions other than that
  in which you are moving. Watch your health level, and
  cover your squad mate.


Q: If I survive an attack, how do I get healthy again?
A: In addition to his weapons, each Marine is supplied with
  four "medkits."  Either press the "K" key, or open your
  inventory window by hitting the "Inventory" button (or F9).
  Then double-click on the medkit icon. A medkit will heal
  one-quarter of your hits.
    

Q: What happens if I shoot, either accidentally or
  intentionally, a fellow Marine?
A: He or she gets shot by a clumsy Marine. Those aren't
  toys, you know. Watch where you point them.

Q: What are the little pop-up windows on the left-hand side
  of the screen when I'm in a mission arena?
A: While on the mission, each fire team member can observe
  the camera views of the other team members.


Q: How do I gain in skill and rank?
A: Successfully completing a mission and your individual
  assignments, as ordered, will boost your skills (in
  weapons use, medical, or computer operations) and rank
  (through accumulation of service points).  Also, when you
  first enter AO, you do so as a non-specialist.  But after
  successfully completing training (or a mission), you may
  choose a specialty, which gives you certain skill
  advantages.  Currently, the specialties are:

  Scout -- Motion detector and flamer skill.
  Medic -- This specialist receives training in the medical
  kit.
  Combat Infantry -- Computer skills and demolition.
  Heavy Weaponry -- Smart gun skill.

Q: What are the advantages and consequences of moving up in
  rank?
A: When you have accumulated enough service points to become
  a corporal, you will be expected to lead a fire team; when
  you attain the rank of sergeant, you may choose to become
  a squad leader, coordinating the movements of all fire
  teams in the mission.


Q: What is this Hall of Honor all about, and how would I
  qualify?
A: This part of the AGS serves as the "scoreboard" for the
  game.  Here you may see abbreviated service records for
  any active player or platoon.  There are two separate
  areas, the "Hall of the Honored Dead" and "Hall of the
  Retired Marines," for showing the service records of those
  who died and those who have retired from active duty,
  respectively.



PLAYING AS AN ALIEN


Q: How do I create an alien character?
A: From the "Choose Alien / Marine" screen, click on Alien
  to go to the main aliens Hive screen.  Then click on "Choose
  Form" to play as either a warrior (also called a worker or a drone)
  or face-hugger. You also choose your name at this point.  After
  you're done, click "Hive" to play. (Note: Once your character has
  acquired 1,000 experience points, you also have the option of playing
  as a queen.  And once your queen has 5,000 experience points, she
  is eligible to become a super queen, or empress. However, your
  character must have started out as a lowly face-hugger to ever have
  the option of becoming an empress alien.)

Q: How many characters can I have at any one time?
A: You only have one alien character.

Q: Are my characters persistent?
A: No matter which side you choose for your character(s) --
  that of the Marines or of the aliens -- your characters
  will be persistent for as long as you play AO (with the
  occasional purging of user accounts after prolonged
  periods of inactivity).


Q: Once I've created an alien character, what do I do?
A: Click on "Hive" to go to the alien mission screen and
   double-click on an arena.

Q: Yuck!  What is this place??
A: You are in the Hive, that cozy warren of chitin-covered
  walls and ooze-dripping ceilings. You love this kind of
  place. It's homey. The queen demands it anyway, and it is
  your pleasure to provide.

Q: Where do I want to go from the Hive, and how do I get
  there?
A: Tunnels branch out of the Hive to nearly every area of
  the compound. Try crawling, jumping and climbing around to
  get a feel for your territory, and then start harvesting
  humans. Yum!

Q: Agricultural colony, mining colony, space station,
  freighter -- does it matter, as a beginning player, which I
  choose to help infest?
A: Probably not, although some maps are significantly more
  complex than others. However, large numbers of
  inexperienced Aliens can be as devastating as fewer
  smarter Aliens, so you'll probably be useful in cutting
  back on the human infestation wherever you go.

Q: How do I maneuver my character?
A: The same way you would as a Marine. See above.

Q: Can I run as well as walk?
A: Yes, you can run by holding down <Shift> while using your
  directional arrow or moving your mouse.

Q: Is it better to be in mouse mode or keyboard mode?  Is
  there any advantage to moving between the two?
A: No.  Your preference.

Q: What strategic advantages do I have as an alien?
A: You can see everyone on the map, Marine and Alien. You
  move more quickly, and you have the rapacious appetite of
  a tree shredder. You are hard to kill, ruthless,
  relentless, terrifyingly strong and deadly, and generally
  the most devastatingly lethal creature yet discovered by
  humans. What more do you want? Guns?

Q: What are my weapons?
A: Claws! Tail! Your seething contempt for puny humans and
  their repulsive, soft, clammy bodies. You are fast, and
  probably a lot smarter than any Marine is going to give
  you credit for, and you have absolutely nothing else to do
  except kill Colonial Marines.

Q: How do I attack?
A: By getting close to a Marine and left-clicking the mouse
  or hitting the <Enter> key (or whatever key you have mapped
  the attack function to). You must get very close, but, hey --
  you're fearless! Before pressing <Enter>, click on the appropriate
  icon for a claws attack or tail attack. You also may determine
  your method of attack via the keyboard, typing <1> for claws
  and <2> for tail; then hit <Enter> to attack.

Q: How do I chat with other players?
A: The same way you would as a Marine, using the apostrophe
  key (').

Q: How does my character develop?
A: You may rise from a lowly face-hugger to a warrior (also known as
   a worker or drone), to a queen, and, ultimately, to a super queen
   (also known as an empress) who controls her own arena stored on the
   server. You have the option of starting as a warrior, but then you
   will not be able to graduate to the level of empress.

Q: How do I gain skill?
A: Kill! Learn the arenas!  Ambush! Cooperate with your
   hive-mates.

Q: What happens if my character dies?
A: You are returned instantly to the nest in the Hive. From
  there, you may return to the attack. Hit the <Spacebar> to
  "jump" into the body of a computer-controlled alien.


Q: How can I improve my chances of surviving a Marine
  attack?
A: Don't get shot. Don't attack a group unless you are in a
  group. Pick off stragglers and careless ones. Attack fast
  and move on, don't slug it out. Find the good spots to
  hide in waiting, and pounce on Marines from behind. By the
  time most can spin around to meet a rear attack, you can
  kill them. Never let them see you until you are right on
  top of them. Use an unwitting fellow alien to distract
  your prey so that you may sneak up. USE THE MAP!


Q: How do I win this game?
A: Kill all Colonial Marines.


********************Mythic Entertainment********************
ALIENS ONLINE
QuickStart Guide for Aliens Online, Version 1.11
Current as of 2/25/98


1. Once the four intro screens pass, you will arrive at 
the "choose" screen. Click on either Marine or Alien, 
depending on which side you want to play that session.
2. Next you will see either the Colonial Marine "Alien 
Gateway Station" or the Alien "Hive" main interface 
screen. As you move your cursor around the screen, 
rollovers and prompts will alert you to the different 
functions of each area of the screen. 
3. If you have not played previously, you must first 
create your character before you can enter multiplayer 
mode.  Just follow the notes below to get you into battle!

 
Playing as a Colonial Marine

As a Colonial Marine, go to lockers for Marine creation. 
Double click on a "cryopod." Create and name the character, pick a
specialty, click on Finish. At the next screen, click on
Staging to return to the main interface.  

You'll arrive at the mission/staging area screen. To play without a
fire team, double-click on a mission, click Enter, then click Enter
again to begin play. For fire team play, click on mission, and click
on a forming fire team to join. The team leader will take you to
pre-launch, then drop you into the game as a group.

If you wish to create a fire team of your own, go the mission screen
and click New Fireteam. Wait for other players to join your team, then
go into Pre-Launch. Once all your members are in Pre-Launch, they can
choose their weapon by clicking through the selection. 

If you die as a Marine, hit the <Esc> key to get a menu, then quit and
re-enter the match.

For help, open "Tactical" from the AGS screen and click on Help.


Playing as an Alien

After choosing alien play from the choose screen, you arrive at the
main hive interface. Choose and name your character on the "Choose
Form" screen, then click on "Hive" for game play. As an alien, you do
not yet have missions. Simply click on the arena of your choice in the
main hive screen and drop into the hive. 

If you die as an Alien, hit the <B> key to "bounce" into a new body.  
 
Good Luck! 

Key Commands

The following list is the default key configuration; 
however, you may reconfigure these key commands by 
clicking on "Tactical" from the AGS screen.

Up arrow; right mouse button	Move forward
Down arrow			Move backward
Right arrow			Turn right
Left arrow			Turn left
Q			        Strafe left (Marine)
W 				Strafe right (Marine)
Left shift			Run
1 - 7				Select weapon (Marine)
1                               Claw attack (alien)
2                               Tail attack (alien)
Enter; left mouse button	Fire weapon (Marine) / attack (alien)
Spacebar			Open door / Activate elevator /
                                 Jump off ladder
Z 				Crouch / Climb down 
T 				Toggle torch on/off
A 				Jump / Climb up
' (apostrophe)  		Chat
M 				Mouse mode (toggle)
S				Look up
X				Look down
D				Center view
R				Reload weapon (Marine)
Escape				Quit
Ctrl                            Default strafe key
Pg Up/Pg Dn                     Scroll player list window
K                               Heal (use medkit from inventory
                                - Marine)
B                               Assume, or "bounce" to, another alien
                                body (alien)


System Requirements

Windows 95 (r), 90 MHz Pentium, 16 MB of RAM, 30 MB disk space, 
Direct Draw-compatible video card, 14,400 baud modem

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