• Home
  • Strategy
  • Race Guides
  • Games
  • Files
  • Forum
  • Info
  • Contact
 
 

Lurkers

Authors: Cliff & Dave

© Copyright - 1996 Dave Killingsworth and Cliff McKeithan. All Rights Reserved

** NOTE: ANY AND ALL BUG REPORTS SHOULD BE SENT TO CLIFF McKEITHAN ( e-mail address is at the bottom of this document ) - AND NOT TO DAN GALE – THANK YOU **

Overview:

This is a multi-part VGA Planets Add-on. It will serve a two fold function. It will offer a target as a kind of Computer Player for people wishing to play as a group against a common enemy. It will also act as a background (add-on) to normal games of VGAP. This program can operate in three different modes.


Mode 1 - (Team)

This is the operating version where the LURKERS will be considered the “Big Nasty Bad Guys.” They have come openly and with hostility to the Echo Cluster. They are out to exterminate all of the existing races. They come armed for bear and all they want to do is destroy. The players will have to play together to withstand the attacks of the LURKERS and they can expect to loose some of their number.


Mode 2 - (Harass)

This version is a weaker and slower propagating version of Mode 1. This version of the LURKERS will move about the Echo Cluster and harass the different races randomly. Attacking quickly and nastily. They pick from the top scoring players and harass them for a short time, before picking a new target.


Mode 3 - (Ally)

This is the operating mode where LURKERS will be more of a background influence. They will sneak quietly into the Echo Cluster. Intent upon using one of the existing races as a puppet to bring down the other races. The will come quietly and select one of the races as an ally. The race chooses if they want to accept the alliance with the LURKERS .

As your ally the LURKERS can be ordered to defend planets for you and they will. They can gather spy information for you from enemy planets and they can even be persuaded to attack enemy planets.

In exchange they ask that you provide them with materials to build ships and occasionally you have to go attack targets that they select for you. If you are successful and accomplish your missions, they will stay happy and help you. If eventually you displease them (they loose ships attacking for you, you don't make proper deliveries of resources, ect.) they will leave to select a new ally, and in leaving they will chastise you for failing them.

Requirements:

Hardware:

Same as VGA Planets.

Software:

Host 3.2 or later.
LURKERS .exe (main executable)
LURKERS 2.exe (main executable 2)
LRKRCFG.exe (configuration program - windows based)
WINPLAN 3.51c or later

New Friendly Codes:

Only Mode 1 and 3 introduces new Fcodes to VGA Planets.

CON - This fcode on a planet will send the configuration of the program in a message

LURKERS Mode 1 Fcode: (Ship Fcode)

DEF - If the races want to unite to build a defense station (described later) they must meet the required materials needed for the station (set in configuration program). This fcode must be on all of the ships carrying the resources for the station. All ships with this code at the same point in space will be considered as aiding in the building process and have the resources removed from their ships to build the station.

LURKERS Alliance Fcodes: (Planet Fcodes)

ACC - You put this Fcode on the planet the LURKERS designate to accept their alliance.

DEF - You put this Fcode on a planet you want a LURKERS fleet to defend. Note: the planet that is the LURKERS link planet (the ACC planet) is automatically considered to have a DEF fcode no matter what the Fcode is.

NNN - where N is a number. If the number is an ID# of an enemy planet the LURKERS will get you a spy report on that planet *but* this cost you LURKERS happy points. (note if planet has a low ID# you must use zeros in the fcode i.e. 001 = ID# 1)

LURKERS Multi-turn Fcode sequences -

REQ - You set this Fcode on the LURKERS planet on a turn this start the request for attack of an enemy planet. You must follow this Fcode on the next turn with a NNN fcode.

NNN - where N is a number. If the number is an ID# of an enemy planet the LURKERS will attack *but* this cost you LURKERS happy points if the LURKERS loose ships in the attack. (note if planet has a low ID# you must use zeros in the fcode i.e. 001 = ID# 1)

So, if you wish to have the LURKERS attack an enemy planet you must set REQ on the LURKERS planet on a turn and on the subsequent turn you must set a 3 digit fcode that is the ID# of the target planet. A LURKERS fleet will break away out of your space and go complete the mission. If the LURKERS loose ships in the fight their happy points will drop accordingly (see mode 3 for more info on LURKERS happy points).

LURKERS introduces new Special Abilities for LURKERS ships.

Note: This special abilities are applied to the LURKERS ship slots. The LURKERS have 5 different ship slots to use. The HOST decides what HULL TYPE is used in each of these slots. Each slot has a special ability tied to it BUT these special abilities can not be used by player, since any ship captured by a player is self-destructed by the LURKERS .

Note: In the following descriptions (X) represents a configured number set by the host in the LURKCFG program.

SLOT 1 - Fear Mongering (FM)-(used in mode 1 and 2 and 3) Registered Only

A FM equipped ship that passes within the configed range of an enemy planet will lower the happy points of the planet by the configed amount.

SLOT 2- Mass Drivers (MD)- (used in mode 1 and 2 and 3) (Shareware & Registered)

A MD equipped ship that closes to the (X) range can execute a mass driver attack (usually done if the ships land with in the (X) range while attempting to reach a planet). The mass drivers will deal the (X) % amount of damage to a planet per turn that the attack is executed.

The % damage equates to the % of structures destroyed from the planets surface, % of the population killed and % of natives killed.

SLOT 3 - Sinker Ability (SA) ( used in mode 1 & 2 only) (Shareware & Registered)

A SA equipped ship that begins or ends its turn in the orbit of an unowned planet (basically a planet its fleet has captured ( LURKERS leave no clans) it will SINK (X)% of the minerals on the planets surface back into the ground (ALL 4 minerals).

(X) % of the structures will be destroyed by the resulting earthquakes - any native life will be reduced by (X) in population.

SLOT 4 - Warp Catapult (WC)- (used in mode 3 only) Registered Only

With this ability the a WC equipped ship will move to a planet (in aux one) - if any enemy ships are present - a number equal to the (X) will be caught in a special crescendo warp bubble generated by the WC equipped ship. This bubble generates a random heading and catapults the enemy ship(s) the (X) distance along that heading. The LURKERS ships are unaffected. If more ships are present than the (X) number allowed the host will pick at random (cloakers are targets) the ships to be catapulted. The target landing point is within the planet area of the starchart - no more than 100ly off of the map.

SLOT 5- Happiness Increase (HI)- (used in mode 3 only) Registered Only

When a ship from slot 5 is over one of YOUR planets your planet will receive a (X) happiness point increase per turn, for the colonists and natives. This effect is a direct result of the natives and colonists feeling more secure since they know they are being protected BY the Lurkers and do not need to be protected FROM the Lurkers.

LURKERS Ship and Fleet Information (not dependent on mode):

The list of ships that the LURKERS can build is designated by the host. The ships that are built by the LURKERS when a build is called for is randomly picked from the LURKERS ship list.

The ships are generated with Transwarp Jump Drives. This means of propulsion acts as follows:

The LURKERS move in hyperspace hops. They can jump up to 81 light years a turn. This movement means that they are unaffected my moving through minefields, they can not hit mines.

LURKERS ships are refueled as them move at the beginning of the turn. They gather energy from Hyperspace as they travel through it, so thus they have a never ending supply of fuel.

LURKERS are not subject to being towed since they move at the beginning of HOST run and the specialized hyperspace transwarp drives are even more powerful than gravitonic drives and can escape any tow mission.

Even though the LURKERS loose fuel in a web field they are refueled as they move.

They (the torp ships) have tech 8 tech (mark 7 torps) torp launchers and start with a (X) torp load (and add torps as per the torp replacement config up to a (X) max torp limit).

The fighter ships start with (X) fighters. They can go up to a (X) fighter limit.

Beams are random between disruptor to Heavy Phaser.

The LURKERS restock lost armament at a rate of (X) torps/fighters per turn.

The LURKERS repair damage to vessels at a rate of (X)% damage per turn.

If a LURKERS ship is captured in combat it will destroy itself before HOST run is over - the LURKERS allow no one to own their vessels - too many secrets.


Mode 1 - TEAM

(Start up and basic activity of the ships)

(X) = denotes a configured number

In mode 1 the LURKERS will begin the game with equipment based on the config set by the host.

The LURKERS will appear on the map on turn (X) and will start (X) ly from the weakest race on the map, and away from the other allied races. This means they will appear at the (X) distance and will have an open path to the target race.

In this mode the LURKERS will seek out the weakest race of the alliance and attempt to destroy them. The destruction does not have to be utter. The HOST sets the level of “toast” that the enemy will have to be browned to, to be considered “dead” by the LURKERS . If a race is beat down to a point where they have equal to or less than the HOST configured number of ships/planets/starbases, they will be considered DEAD by the LURKERS and the LURKERS will move on to the next race.

Once this lesser race is destroyed the LURKERS will move to the next weakest race and attempt to destroy them. The race with the fewest planets will be considered the weakest race.

The LURKERS fleet will move in a fleet and fight in an order to best optimize their strength.

The LURKERS maintain a fleet until they have (X) ships in the fleet (each new built ship appears with the fleet when made) once (X) ships are in the fleet they will split into 2 fleets of ½(X) and act independently.

If the program determines that the battle fleet is low on armament they will move into space and wait a turn or two (moving around) and wait for rearming before continuing with attacks.

The LURKERS will randomly select targets from a range from their location the range is (X). Once a target it selected it will move toward that target until it is destroyed and not select a new target. The ships will pick a path to the planet but only plot 81 LY or less hops to the target so as not to give away the target (they will hide waypoints).

If starbases are considered PRIME targets the AI will automatically select a starbase that is within the (X) target select range, but the LURKERS will only take them out if it deems it possible victory - otherwise they will attack other planets to get more ships and then attack. The LURKERS know all and can make (somewhat) healthy attack decisions - sometimes they will gamble.

The LURKERS will build a new starship and add it to one of their fleets for every (X) planets killed.

In mode one the races have the option to team up together and build a Mutual Defense Space Station (MDSS).

To build a MDSS (X) races need to gather in a single point in space with a ship carrying (X) amount of resources (the amount of minerals (all 3), supplies, colonists and megacredits are set by the host config options). The (X) races need to meet at the same point in space and set the ship(s), carrying the resources for the station, to all have the friendly code “DEF”.

If all of the requirements are met then a MDSS will be built. The presence of this MDSS will cause the LURKERS to avoid all colonized planets within a 200 LY radius around the MDSS. The station will be completely stable for (X) turns. After (X) turns have passed there is a slight (X) % chance per turn that something mysterious will happen to the station and it will disappear never to be seen again…maybe.

(Victory Conditions) - MODE 1

The above activity continues until the LURKERS are defeated or defeat their enemies.

  • LURKERS defeat is loss of all fleet ships.
  • Ally defeat is determined when at any time all of the races left are considered non factors or dead - based on the above conditions.


Mode Two: Harass

Mode 2 is a weaker and slower growing version of mode 1. Mode two also has different attack patterns and preferences. The defaults and config ranges are smaller to accommodate the necessity of a weaker LURKERS force in this version of the program.

(Start up and basic activity of the ships)

(X) = denotes a configured number

In mode 2 the LURKERS will begin the game with equipment based the HOSTs config settings.

When the LURKERS in mode two select their target they will randomly choose one of the top 5 races in the game. The top five is based in the number of planets owned by a race. So whoever has the most planets will be number 1 with the rest of the races will be ranked behind.

The LURKERS will select one of the races that is ranked between 1-5 in number of planets owned and that race will become the LURKERS target.

The LURKERS will appear on the map on turn (X) and will start (X) LY from the first targeted race. This means they will appear at the (X) distance and will have a, somewhat, open path to the target race.

The LURKERS will attack the target race for a random number of turns. The turn count will start as soon as the LURKERS engage the first planet of that race. The range of the attack will last from 5-10 turns. Then the LURKERS will pick a new target. And then select a random number of turns to attack with the count starting on the turn they engage the first planet of that new race.

The LURKERS fleet will move in a fleet and fight in an order to best optimize their strength.

The LURKERSS maintain a fleet until they have (X) ships in the fleet (each new built ship appears with the fleet when made) once (X) ships are in the fleet they will split into 2 fleets of ½(X) and act independently.

If more than one LURKERS fleet is present in a game they will act independently of each other. They can have the same or different targets.

If the program determines that the battle fleet is low on armament they will move into space and wait a turn or two (moving around) and wait for rearming before continuing with attacks.

The LURKERS will randomly select targets from a range from their location the range is (X). Once a target it selected it will move toward that target until it is destroyed and not select a new target. The ships will pick a path to the planet but only plot 81 LY or less hops to the target so as not to give away the target (they will hide waypoints).

If starbases are considered PRIME targets, the LURKERS will automatically select a starbase that is within the (X) target select range, but the LURKERS will only take them out if it deems it possible victory - otherwise they will attack other planets to get more ships and then attack. The LURKERS know all and can make (somewhat) healthy attack decisions - sometimes they will gamble.

(Victory Conditions)

The conditions are based on the setting of the game. There are no victory conditions for the LURKERS vs. the players or for the players vs. the LURKERS there is just the eternal struggle to keep the LURKERS away and out of your space while you destroy your neighbors. The LURKERS persist until the game is over or the LURKERS are all destroyed.


Mode 3: Ally

In this mode the LURKERS will appear and select one of the races at random to be their “ally.” The LURKERS will (if accepted as an ally) defend planets selected by the ally to be defended. In exchange the player will be expected to perform certain missions for the LURKERS from time to time. If the player complies and finishes the mission the LURKERS will remain friendly to them. If the player fails he will be “warned/punished” for non-compliance.

 (X) = denotes a configured number

In this mode the LURKERS will enter the game on turn (X). They will choose a race at random - as they appear - and will appear at a planet chosen at random in the new Ally's empire. This planet will be within (X) LY of the new proposed ally's homeworld.

The chosen race will be given the option of accepting an alliance with the LURKERS . If they want to accept the alliance all they have to do is set an fcode of ‘ACC' on the planet indicated by the LURKERS in their alliance proposal message. The ally must set this fcode within 2 turns of the proposal or the LURKERS will pick a new ally. Also, the LURKERS will not approach a race with less than (X) planets and will not approach a race again (if not accepted) unless it has checked with all of the other viable players.

If the ‘ACC' fcode is used then the alliance will be accepted and the LURKERS will “take over” the planet you set the ‘ACC' fcode on and it will be known henceforth in this documentation as the LURKERS planet.

The LURKERS will appear with (X) ships. In mode 3 the LURKERS will begin the game with equipment based the HOST's config settings.

The LURKERS begin play with a configurable number of ships. These ships are divided up into fleets, each of which is available for any LURKERS mission you might request. When not on a mission, all fleets reside at the LURKERS planet.

You must make regular deliveries of minerals, supplies, and colonists to the LURKERS planet (see below). They will keep you informed of when the next delivery is due. When you deliver the required resources, the LURKERS will build a new ship. If you fail to make a delivery on time, the LURKERS happiness level will drop. Every time a ship is built, the LURKERS happiness level will increase. You may make deliveries early if you wish to.

You may request that the LURKERS defend one or more of your planets. You make this request by setting the friendly code of the planet you want defended to ‘DEF'. You may ask the LURKERS to defend as many planets as you want to, but as each planet will be defended by one fleet, there is a practical limit to the number of planets at which you can make this request. The LURKERS planet will always be defended regardless of its friendly code.

You may request that the LURKERS perform a spy mission on a planet. You make this request by setting the friendly code of the LURKERS planet to the planet ID# you wish to spy upon. On the next turn, the LURKERS will send you a message detailing the planet spyed upon. Each use of this mission reduces the LURKERS happiness level by (X) points. The spy report would be likened to a combination of Super Spy and Dark Sense.

You may request that the LURKERS attack a planet. This requires a two turn process. On the first turn, set the friendly code of the LURKERS Planet to ‘REQ'. On the second, set it to the ID# of the planet you wish to have attacked. The LURKERS will then dispatch a fleet to attack that planet. The LURKERS happiness level will go down anytime a ship of theirs is destroyed. SO be very careful about what you order the LURKERS to do for you. If you send them on foolhardy attack missions they will become very upset with you and very quickly. You will never know exactly how happy the LURKERS are so use their abilities very carefully and wisely.

The LURKERS expect your Empire (# of planets) to grow at a certain rate (configed by host). If you fail to grow, the LURKERS happiness level will go down.

The LURKERS expect you to maintain a certain size empire (configed by host). If your Empire drops below that size, their happiness level will go down by the configed amount of happiness points. If the LURKERS happiness level drops too much, they will turn on you. They will attack your planets for a certain number of turns, then they will disappear. Once they disappear, they will begin looking for a new ally.

Resource Depositing:

Every (X) turns the Ally will be required to deposit the following on the planet:

(X) KT Tritanium
(X) KT Duranium
(X) KT Molybdenum
(X) Clans
(X) Supplies

The LURKERS will tell the Ally with a message what is due and when.

The due time is a minimum. The LURKERS will produce a new ship when the materials are supplied on the appointed turn. This new ship will appear at the LURKERS planet and part of a fleet.

If the ally provides the required materials more often than requested by the LURKERS the LURKERS can build extra ships. The LURKERS can build no more than (X) extra ships between required deposit dates. Note that any and all materials on the planet will be used when the ship is constructed. (this means no stockpiling since all extra materials get used - the exception is Clans - 100 clans will always be left behind - the LURKERS will make sure of this). Even if extra ships are built the player still has to deposit ON THE DATE specified, or the happy decrease will happen.

Occasionally the LURKERS will request that the Ally attack and acquire specific planets in the echo cluster.

The LURKERS will randomly pick a planet that is within (X) distance of ANY of their (allied) planets. The player will be given (X) turns to acquire the planet for the LURKERS . They are not expected to hold the planet. Just attack it and gain control of it for one turn (this is all of the time that the LURKERS need to get what they want from that planet). If this mission is accomplished within the specified time period the LURKERS happy level will go up. If the mission is not accomplished (fails) the happy points will drop by (X) points.

 
************************************************************************

HOSTS---- You need to give a copy of this DOC file to your players !!!

************************************************************************

You also need to give them copies of all BMP files you find in the ZIP file you got this program from. Tell them that they need to place the BMP files in the sub directory (labeled BMP) under their WINPLAN directory. This will give them the BMP's they need to see the in the LURKERS in the messaging system.


SHAREWARE RESTRICTIONS:

This is a shareware copy of this program. It will only allow the LURKERS to exist in a game with a limited number of ships and without all of their special powers functioning. In shareware there will only be 10 ships available and they will not be able to build anymore after these are destroyed. They will only have 2 of their special powers activated.

Registration of this program will get you a registered copy of the program mailed to you. This copy will allow all the LURKERS to keep building and use all of their powers of destruction and help and remove the please register message.


ORDERING INFO:

Registration information is available in the ORDERFRM.ZIP file that was included in this ZIP file.

Note: Dan and Dave add-ons and Cliff and Dave add-ons can be registered through the same places - either from Dave (orderfrm.zip), Tim or from BMT Micro.

BMT Micro (credit card orders)
1-910-791-7052
BMTMICRO@aol.com
There is also ONLINE ORDERING available through Tim's Web page.
http://www.wilmington.net/vgaplanets/index.html
(go to the ONLINE ORDERING link)

In GERMANY
STC Computerservice
Tobias & Co. KG
POB 910427
90262 Nuemburg
sales@stc-kg.com
voice - 49-911-3 937 937
fax - 49-911-3 937-939

In DENMARK
Survival BBS
c/o Henrik Moerk
FIDO 2:231/306
+45 38 89 52 52 N-8-1
PO Box 1538
DK - 2700 Copenhagen
Denmark

Thank you for your interest, to contact us via the internet use the following addresses:

Dave Killingsworth :
capstern@aol.com
http://users.aol.com/capstern/index.html

Cliff McKeithan
skye@diac.com
http://www.diac.com/~skye/home.html

LURKERS
For VGA Planets 3.5x
Design : Dave Killingsworth and Cliff McKeithan
Programming: Cliff McKeithan
Consulting / Additional Design: Tim Wisseman, Conrad Lesnewski and Dan Gale
Artwork: Kenneth Wisseman, Ralph G Hart
Shareware may be freely distributed but all copyrights are still retained and all rights reserved.

 

 
 
Latest Messages
 
 
 
 

 

VGA Planets Homepage Donavan's VGA Planets Assistant

Copyright © Circus-Maximus.com unless otherwise specified. All Rights Reserved.
The Contents of this page may not be used, published or reproduced without the owners written permission.
All other material © of their respectful owners.
VGA Planets is Copyright © Tim Wisseman



Contact | History | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service