Saturday, 29 July 2006

They're Hiring

ARES Corporation that is.

If I wasn't doing a PhD, I'd be sorely tempted to send them my CV.

If I remember correctly, the last time I saw ARES corporation was in the old SPI game, Battlefleet Mars :

Simulation of interplanetary conflict in the Solar system during the late 21st century. Earth is dependent on extra-terrestrial resources, teh procurement of which is managed, executed, and controlled by privately owned conglomerates.

The game concerns an attempt by disenchanged employees of the corporation living in space and on Mars to seize the means of production to gain autonomy.

From a review:
You win the game by pushing the other sides Morale down so far that he
cannot fight on. This is done by winning battles, as well as sabotage and political interaction. Once per turn, each player rolls on the morale table. This gives a variety of results, including depressing the other side's Morale table, sabotage attempts (rolled for on a separate table), assassination attempts, truces and WORD support for Ares Corporation (Ares Corporation is the firm which owns and is supposed to control the revolting ships and planets). WORD (World Organisation forResource Development) is a sort of Earth government. Morale is also affected by control of Asteroids, the opposition's home planet and other strategic planets (like Jupiter). The map covers the Solar System from Jupiter inwards.

SPI's games were sometimes depressingly prescient. This one was from 29 years ago.

From some of the game's "Fluff" over at ProjectRho :

Violently the ship executed a maximum burn maneuver with her nine and twelve o'clock engines. Some of the datastream elements were now glowing red. "Damage report: two mike hit on plates 1023/24 negative critical. Integrity 80-80."

"Beautiful, Dee, You saved our jewels with that cut."

Ulans tapped his foot reflexively. On the blue cross hair showing on the main screen, a yellow dot bloomed. Six thousand kilometers distant, several people died.

"Gotum! Gotum!" Jacklin screamed in the interphone. "You're writin' the book, Dee baby! Writin' the book!"

What would you know about books Jacklin, thought Dieter -- besides which I do not feel well and have not the faintest idea of what I'm doing. The rest of the crew was shouting over the phones, estatic with victory. Bystanders he thought. Goddamned passengers. Me -- I'm doing it and I don't know it until I've done it.

"17 to main power...16" Jacklin began to recite the seconds remaining until the main laser had built itself a new charge. No sound, mused Ulans, no bang. They should put sound effects on these things so that you could hear a bang when you made a shot. The slight vibration and the glow on the screen wasn't enough. No real way to relate to that. Should be some noise.

Once again, the crew was slammed by heavy G-force as the ship responded to the almost automatic commands of Ulans' fingers. A loud whanging started up in some distant part of the Hercules. He could actually feel the deck rippling under his feet. Not so lucky this time.

"Damage report. Nine mike frontal hit on super B. Partial dislocation on six o'clock. Six isolated. Explosive decom in cell four, five, six, and F-2. Randalls and Chung do not respond. Losing power on three o'clock and associated vanes. Looks bad, Dee."

"What's happening with the rest of the task force?"

"They're 180 on the other side of Vesta doing a job on the remaining Company element. We're being tracked by a triple-A Company police ship -- most likely the transport Des Jardin."

"Can we run for it, Dee?"

Ulans looked through the datavisor at the blue figures on the main screen even though he already knew the answer.

"No chance. We've got maybe one shot as Kolnichok closes. Maybe I'll get fancy and burn him off. At worst, we'll wind up in the Company Can -- after all they don't want to blow up this ship -- they think they own it!" he lied. He knew he was going to die, but the rest of the crew was even more helpless than he so why burden them with reality?

Three little orange dots appeared on the screen. Look at him -- blowing out decoys even though he knows we're out of maneuver -- that Kolnichok, grinned Dieter. So which one is you, Joey, and which are the aluminum balloons? (Seven dots grew on the screen, all had slightly different vectors.) Now you know my heater can take you in one flash and you also know that one zap is all I'm going to get. And if I take it you've got a perfect excuse to blow me up for the honor of the company rather than recapture valuable property for the accountants. So what's it going to be? I think you shot off too many balloons too early Joey -- cause the other ones aren't making the course correction you just did. Ain't that you, Joe?

Ulans squinted and tapped his foot.
Let's hope we have more sense. I wouldn't bet on it though.

No comments: