TerraFire Instructions

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Description

An award-winning arcade game featuring stunning raytraced graphics and super-smooth 360 degree parallax scrolling. Blast your ship through heavily defended underground caverns, past wind tunnels, fire-walls and subterranean lakes. Recover stolen nuclear pods using your ship's tractor beam, then carry them back to the planet surface and beyond into hyperspace.

SPECIAL FEATURES

  • 27 missions, including 6 hyperspace bonus levels.
  • 5 different worlds, each with unique graphics.
  • 360 degree, multi-level parallax scrolling.
  • Stunning raytraced sprites and scenery.
  • Smooth 70 frames per second animation.
  • Realistic gravitational physics.

This is the full version, which you can now enjoy entirely free of charge. You may also distribute the game's installation program so long as you (a) do not change it and (b) do not charge others.

Requirements
  • Windows 98, 2000, Me or XP.
  • 32 MB of RAM and 8 MB free disk space.
  • Sound Blaster compatible sound card (optional).

Note: TerraFire is one of our oldest games, first released in 1997. To run it on more modern operating systems (Windows, Mac and Linux) you will need to use an 'emulator' such as DOSBox.

Playing The Game

The Empire is under attack. Rebel forces have hijacked government nukes, securing them deep underground in heavily defended bunkers. The Emperor has 24 hours to surrender or face the consequences.

Conventional craft are unable to navigate the underground bunkers. The Empire's one hope is a top secret, highly manoeuvrable assault craft code-named TerraFire and YOU are the only qualified pilot.

Your mission is to seek out the stolen nukes, lock on to them with the ship's tractor beam and carry them safely into orbit. Sound easy? Well the nukes are booby-trapped and locking on to them will trigger a countdown - get out of there before the countdown reaches zero or you won't live to regret it.

Sometimes, your path will be blocked by a gate or other obstacle. These can be opened by shooting a switch, but first you'll have to find it. If a switch flashes green after you've shot it, the gate will only remain open for a short period. If the switch turns a steady green (without flashing), the gate will stay open.

You will also encounter enemy ambushes in hyperspace. You must eliminate all enemy craft before continuing with your mission.

DEFAULT KEYS

Left Arrow :
Rotate Anti-Clockwise
Right Arrow :
Rotate Clockwise
Up Arrow :
Thrust Forwards
Ctrl :
Fire
P :
Pause / Resume
F1 :
Help
Esc :
Menu

POWER-UPS

The red bar at the top of the screen shows your shield strength. Each time you or the nuke you are carrying is hit, your shields are depleted - if they reach zero, you die! Fortunately you have three lives and you can get extra lives and repair your shields by collecting power-up gems:

LIFE POWER-UP
This is a yellow gem marked with a human figure. It gives one extra life. Your lives are indicated by the miniature ships at the top of the screen.
SHIELD POWER-UP
This is a white gem marked with a red cross. It will restore up to 50% of your shields.
WEAPON POWER-UP
This is a red power-up marked with a gun-sight. These gems will boost your fire-power.
SAVE POWER-UP
This is a green power-up marked with a disk. Collect this gem to save your current position.

CHEAT KEYS

Owners of the Full Version can enable the game's cheat system by pressing F4 on the main menu (note that your score will be fixed at zero). When playing the actual game, you will then have access to the following cheat keys:

F5 :
Upgrade Weapons
F6 :
Repair Ship
F7 :
Skip To Next Level

OBSTACLES AND ENEMIES

STANDARD (GREEN) MINES
These spiked spheres obstruct your path and explode on contact. Easily destroyed with a few shots.
TRIGGER (BLUE) MINES
Will accelerate towards your ship if shot - get away quickly!
INDESTRUCTIBLE (BLACK) MINES
Cannot be shot - you must simply avoid them.
HOMING (RED) MINES
If you get too close to these mines, they will lock onto your ship. You must avoid them until they self-destruct or hit a wall. They can also be shot, but it takes a lot of hits.
STANDARD GUNS
These guns are restricted to either horizontal or vertical firing.
RADAR GUNS
Transmit high-frequency shock-waves capable of inflicting severe damage. However, the firing pattern is predictable and they are easily destroyed.
TURRET GUNS
These guns will target your ship VERY accurately so hit them fast.
SWEEP GUNS
Scatter rapid fire through a 90 degree range. You'll have to time your attack very carefully to avoid being hit.
CUBOID
Cube-shaped patrol droid with a deadly aim.
YELLOW MEANIES
These suicide droids will attempt to ram your ship.
ASTEROIDS
Frequently encountered in hyperspace. The larger ones will disintegrate into smaller rocks when destroyed.
ZINGERS
Usually encountered in asteroid fields, Zingers move in snake-like formations. Take care to shoot the front or back Zingers first - if you shoot the middle, you'll create two independent chains.
SPI-DROIDS (FULL VERSION ONLY)
These spider-like droids will home in on your ship VERY quickly.
ROBO-SNAKE (FULL VERSION ONLY)
This one takes a LOT of hits to kill. It will follow your ship so take care not to corner yourself.
SPIKE-BALL (FULL VERSION ONLY)
This huge droid hunts it's prey in hyperspace - it's favoured tactic is to repeatedly chase and then open fire. You'll have to learn when to fight and when to run to defeat this one.
CLAWS (FULL VERSION ONLY)
These tough rebel ships leave a deadly trail of shots in their wake. You'll have trouble avoiding them, so make their destruction a priority.
BOUNCERS (FULL VERSION ONLY)
Fast moving, fast firing guard droids.
GLOBULES (FULL VERSION ONLY)
These jelly-like creatures will home in on your ship. The larger ones split into smaller versions of themselves when destroyed.
RINGERS (FULL VERSION ONLY)
These small droids move in a circular formation designed to trap our ship.
FLAMER (FULL VERSION ONLY)
The ultimate killing machine - armed with two powerful flame throwers, it will quickly turn your ship to toast if you don't get out of the way. Once damaged, it's even more dangerous, spewing shots in all directions.
The Setup Program

TerraFire will usually auto-detect your sound card settings, but there may be times when you need do make manual adjustments or even disable the game's sound altogether. You can do this via the game's Setup program: click the Windows 'Start' button, select 'Programs', locate the 'TerraFire' folder, then select 'Sound Setup'.

Troubleshooting

If you encounter any problems running TerraFire, please refer to our Support Page.

Hints

GENERAL SUGGESTIONS

  • If you've read the instructions, but you still don't know what you're meant to do, watch the demo - that's why it's there.
  • Most users find keyboard control easier than using a joystick.
  • If the game is too easy or too hard, try selecting a lower skill level. The skill setting determines the following factors: the number of hits your ship can take; the time allowed to collect power-ups; the length of the self-destruct sequence; the frequency of save game positions; the maximum number of lives you can collect; and the amount of points awarded.

IN THE SUBTERRANEAN LEVELS

  • Learning to control the ship is a large part of the game. Most players will learn the basics in about 10 minutes, but it takes practice to really be able to throw the ship around at will. It's a highly manoeuvrable craft and the controls are very sensitive so take things slowly at first. Use the thruster sparingly and keep the nose pointing up whenever possible. If you need to move downwards, don't turn upside down, just let gravity do the work for you. And if you must aim sideways, for example to shoot a switch on the wall, give your craft a boost upwards first so you have time to stop your fall.
  • If you want to travel against the flow in a wind tunnel (or with the flow when you're carrying a nuke), it's important to build up speed before entering it.
  • Always plan how you're going to get back to the surface before locking on to a nuke. Sometimes it's easier to clear a path to the exit first and then go back to collect the nuke.

IN THE HYPERSPACE LEVELS

  • Try to stay in the centre of the screen.
  • If your ship is hidden off the edge of the screen, don't hang around waiting to be hit - take a chance and just accelerate ANYWHERE.
  • Keep the number of asteroids on the screen to a minimum by picking off the larger rocks one at a time: shoot one large rock, shoot all the smaller rocks released, and only then shoot the next large rock.
  • Some of the alien craft home in on your ship. You can confuse them by moving off one side of the screen and appearing on the other.
Special Options

Certain aspects of the program's behaviour can be modified using 'switches':

-RESET
Restores all the option settings (sound, graphics and control) to their original state. Always try this switch if you encounter any problems which you cannot resolve by other means.
-QUIET
Disables the sound effects.
-SLOWSHOW
Displays a "SLOW" warning message in the bottom-right corner of the screen whenever your computer is unable to keep up the pace. Use this switch if you suspect the game is running slowly. If the message flashes only for brief periods, don't worry, but if it stays on, you should consider methods of speeding the game up (see Common Problems and Solutions).
-LEVEL x
Starts each game on level x. This switch is only available in the full version. If you use it, your score will be fixed at zero.
-WEAPON x
Starts each game with the player's weapon at power level x. This switch is only available in the full version. If you use it, your score will be fixed at zero.
-MISSILES x
Starts each game with the player having x missiles. This switch is only available in the full version. If you use it, your score will be fixed at zero.

Program switches can be applied as follows:

  1. Right-click on the TerraFire icon that you usually use to launch the game (either on the Windows Desktop or on the Windows Start Menu).
  2. Select 'Properties' from the pop-up menu that appears.
  3. Click at the end of whatever appears in the "Target" field and add a space, followed by your switches (make sure your additions appear outside any quotation marks already present). Here is an example: "C:\Program Files\TerraFire\tf.exe" -QUIET -LEVEL 8
  4. Click 'OK', then use the same TerraFire icon to launch the game.
Contact Address

Still got questions? The best way to contact us is by email.

Credits

DESIGN, PROGRAMMING & ARTWORK

  • Owen Thomas

PRIMARY PLAY-TESTERS

  • Merete Hertzum
  • Ian Thomas
  • Jason Toft
  • Joe LaVerdi
  • Martin Moyse
  • Pete Croft
  • Julian Morris
  • Stephen Kelly
  • Bryan Smith
  • Keif Gwinn
  • Mark Gilman
  • James Answer
  • Dale Wilks
  • Paul Smith-Crallan
  • Charles Pearmain
  • Martin Prescott

SPECIAL THANKS

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