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Learning Cliff

Learning Cliff
So steep is the learning curve in Phoenix that some have referred to it as a cliff. It is not so much that any one thing is particularly complicated it is rather that there are so many things that bombard anyone not familiar with the setting. So lets start with the basics:

Trainees
When you first sign up you are a Trainee. You belong to the Affiliation Trainee. Once registered with Nexus (the name of this all singing and dancing website/game interface) you can view the various Affiliations under Game>Affiliations.
Unlike other Affiliations, this one is not player controlled and is severely limited. You cannot even leave the relatively safe environment of Halo and Kastorian controlled space (Yank, Solo and Skord in the Outer Capellen Periphery.
You start the game in Agripeta (Game>Jump Map then go to Halo).
By staying Trainee you will avoid trouble as nobody bothers Trainees. Use this time to learn the basics of playing the game. Ask questions on the General Forum - either in the Discussions OOC (out of character) if it is about rules and game mechanics or if you want to introduce yourself through your captain, then try the Player Discussions IC (in character).

First Mission
The first mission is simply selecting parameters for your first ship, its crew and the captain. This leads directly onto a mission associated with the type of ship you have selected.
Don't worry about which ship to go for first as immediately after this you can use the Follow Up Mission to get more ships - the ones you didn't select first.
So within only a few days of playing the game you will have three ships quickly increasing you options.
The starter missions have been designed to be simple guides in the use of Nexus. We have purposefully included a lot of hand-holding. Apologies if this is somewhat patronising, especially if you are a returning player but if you are completely new to this style of gaming, we appreciate there is a lot to take in.
So initially your orders are written and added to the order editor as you make your option choices. In the follow up missions however you will be given the information of where you need to go but will have to create the orders yourself.

Don't worry about making mistakes - once registered look at the medals awarded to players. Quite a few proudly display their bronze asteroid awards. These are granted when you smash your ship into an asteroid belt, blowing it up. Fewer display their silver and golds - for sending a fleet of ships to their doom and doing it again with the replacement fleet - respectively!

Moving About

There are three types of movement in Phoenix - Jumping which is moving between star systems, ISR or micro-jumping which is moving around a star system between worlds and finally Thrust which accounts for landing on planets and moving in and out of the orbits of worlds. Each uses a different sort of engine - but don't worry about this, your starting ships have all the appropriate engines.


All you need to do to get anywhere is use the following movement orders:
Move to Starbase
Move to Planet Orbit
Move to Planet XY
The orders all have explanations.
At some point you will need to leave Halo. You can do this by moving to the appropriate wormhole (use move to Planet Orbit) followed by Enter Wormhole.


Trading
At least one of the missions deals with moving items onto and off your ship. The mission deals with all this, however you might want to deal directly with a starbase market. You can find markets available in system by looking on maps. There is one mission where getting some alcohol to hand over to farmers results in a bonus. To trade with a starbase you need to be in orbit (if it has a hiport - basically a lift) or docked in the base. Hiport availability is listed on the market. Use the 'move to starbase' order. You can check your ship manifest to determine how much cargo space you have.


Getting items onto and off a ship
As well as buying and selling you can pick up and deliver. You will notice that there are two types of each order, one for Item Types. The latter covers a range of items that fall into the same class.
So for example, if you wanted to pick up Human Crew, you would use Pick Up with Human Crew as the item. If however you wanted to deliver Food, Consumer Goods and Luxury Goods from your cargo, as all these items fall into the Item Type 'Trade Goods' you could use Deliver Item Type 'Trade Goods'.
Note that you have two sections to your ship, a cargo section and an installed section. Items that are installed are active in the ship. Certain items such as quarters and cargo bays provide space for people and cargo while other installed items such as drives, sensors and shields define the sort of ship it is.




Completing Missions

It is not essential to complete the starting missions rather these are there to give you some guidance if you need it and tell you a little about the game universe. Some incur losses other give boons. It is more about teaching you how to submit orders, how to find your way between worlds and markets and give you the tools for determining your own direction in the game.
We anticipate that it will take you around six weeks to get through the training missions, though some have done it faster. Others have simply binned them off, having worked out what they intend to do generally by joining an affiliation.


Essentially a ship consists of the following
  • Hulls - lighter hulls have more internal space but are easier to destroy.
  • Armour - heavier hulls can support more armour.
  • Bridge - makes ships crew more efficient
  • Senors - used to detect things and gives upper limit to weapon targeting computers
  • Engines (thrust, landing) - provide ability to move in orbits and land. Determine highest gravity world ship can land on
  • ISR Drives - for moving around a system. The lower the number the better.
  • Jump Drives - for moving between systems
  • Quarters and Cargo Bays - provide space for crew, passengers and goods
  • Weapons - Don't worry too much about weapon systems and shielding at this point.

 
News
Is open for business...
 
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***** Inter Galactic News *****

Crowe Coups Self

The IMP Viceroy Tiberius Crowe has finally achieved something in his unremarkable tenure by relinquishing even the semblance of wearing big boy pants and instead, appointed Jack Jones as Patrol Commissioner, salty spokesperson and policy maker for the Empire. Crowe will now join CIA Director Laton in riding the special bus to work where the two of them will enjoy long pleasant afternoons sipping cups of tea. Actually, just tepid fruit-scented water as neither of them can be fully trusted with a hot kettle. Occasionally, they might be visited by equally dynamic war “veteran” Admiral Bridge to enjoy mimes presenting the latest comics from the Howl. Meanwhile, Jones is putting pressure on the FET and will soon no doubt find a pretext to deploy his vast mercenary forces against anyone else who is seen working too closely with his most hated of enemies, the HEX.


 
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***** Inter Galactic News *****

Highlord Aadolf Loses Control As Dewiek Break Peace Treaty

Around one hundred DEN warships have launched an attack on a small GTT destroyer squadron of forty ships in the Daggern system. Two GTT ships were destroyed and another fifteen suffered noticeable damage. CEO Xavier Fox issued a restrained but angry statement demanding the DEN explain themselves. Highlord Aadolf’s buffoon-like response amounted to “Dewiek be Dewiek, let’s drink and forget about it.” Cold comfort for the dead crew onboard the GTT ships and their families. Especially, as seems likely at this time, the Empire will settle for some bloody money instead of retribution.


 
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***** Inter Galactic News *****

The Worm Turns

The FET have reduced relations with the IMP to neutral. Sneezy boss Cu Chulainn took the bold step of putting 1 and 1 together by linking recent mercenary attacks in their systems with the IMP scouts seen loitering for some time and refusing to move. Even bolder, hints that they believe “a certain Imperial citizen” is responsible for Edward Lowe’s entire underhand operation were voiced loudly enough that the handsome but hard of hearing Tiberius Crowe had to take note. He was seen grappling in trademark fashion with his skin tight jacket, pulling it down over his partially concealed middle-aged girth, as he sat to issue a terse public statement. Exactly who this citizen may be was left unnamed and no news channel subject to Imperial laws would dare unmask the villain. Luckily dear readers, we are not subject to phony Imperial laws. It’s Jack Jones everybody. Jack Jones, butcher of Naplians and fancier of silver long johns.


 
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***** Inter Galactic News *****

”Necessity hath no law”

Lord Cromwell of the DOM slapped a fleet of privateers, on charges of "knavery", "bad manners" and "poor sportsmanship." Such offences carry the death sentence in the Dominion, a nebulous territory neither part of the Empire nor apart from it. At least thirteen Armadillo class ships, typically sold by the DOM, were destroyed at a location Cromwell was unwilling to disclose publicly. Bloodthirsty Dewiek as well as "prince of peace" Yahn Wodenzoon were quick to congratulate the DOM for their merciless carnage. It seems the consensus in the galaxy’s ruling class is that not presenting valid identification is a crime worthy of the murder of dozens, perhaps hundreds, of unfortunate crewmen. This is all just another indicator that the political elite are far removed from the lives of ordinary people who are seen as little more than meat inventory. It is telling so-called “man of the people and the downtrodden” Wodenzoon so readily aligns himself with this grisly concord. Meanwhile, the archaic elocutionist Cromwell further establishes the recent trend of mild exertions of power by the cold-blooded DOM.


 
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***** Inter Galactic News *****

Return of the Fox

The galaxy is still digesting news of the return of Xavier Fox to the boardroom of the GTT. The ailing corporation's share price began a sharp rally after a six month downward spiral under Ike Krieger, credited with being the worst CEO in the megacorporation's history. The only surviving board member from Fox's initial tenure as CEO, and perhaps across the entire GTT board, is Antt Tilton the Research Director. The reclusive Tilton is the brains behind the ascension of GTT technology, particularly in the field of antimatter weapons and super-heavy dreadnought size ships, Tilton offers a small measure of continuity during this tumultuous time. Mr. Fox has therefore resorted to a broad appeal for new blood to join the ailing firm. So far, the result has been a number of two-dimensional "Yes" persons being promoted to the C-suite. Still, key stakeholders were upbeat with one commenting, "Fox is the man to turn this bloody disaster around. He knows how to put a great team together and where to bury the bodies of the non-performers."


 
******Empire Syndicated News Network (ESNN) ******

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Welcome to the latest version of ESNN, giving the news and views from the ESNN's reporter and news anchor, Ainsley Moore, making this the peripheries' most favourite unbiased publication in the known universe,

And so with the news,
 
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As part of the update outlined in the 7th February post, turn fees have been increased as from today.

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******Empire Syndicated News Network (ESNN) ******

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Welcome to the new version of ESNN (formally CSNN), giving the news and views from the former CSNN's reporter and news anchor, Ainsley Moore, making this the peripheries' most favourite unbiased publication in the known universe,

And so with the news,
 

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I’ve played on and off for approximately 10 years, over a 20 year spell. After some interesting debate on the in-game forum, I did wonder what, exactly, has kept drawing me back to the game, when for so many others I’ve generally lost interest after a few months.

Ultimately, I think it is a combination of automation (that allows the game to handle thousands of positions to interact on a daily basis) coupled with Special Actions (that allow the story arc to develop in a way that could not be catered for by a set of predefined list of available orders).
-Zigic