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Targ Survival Kit


The Targ Survival Kit was released mid-1986 by Novagen (sold 3.95), and contained official hints and goodies, gathered in an envelope: a Central City streets map, underground and orbital complex maps, ships characteristics, a novella called "Interlude On Targ" (filled with hints), and (in all versions?) a Mercenary badge, which can be seen on this Commodore Plus/4 World page. Novagen was also giving a free Hint Sheet before the Kit was released.
The Targ Survival Kit was later added to some Compendium releases (apparently not in later budget Compendium re-releases!).
Thanks to: Darren for information about the content, and Jeremy Smith for most of the content.

1- Posters
2- Interlude On Targ novella
3- Hint sheet
4- Ads

German and French versions of the Kit envelope:


Posters

The underground and orbital complex maps and ships sheet were translated into French and German, but not the rest of the kit - so obviously the Central City Map was the same worldwide. The Datasoft version (for the USA) had a different set of posters, in monochrom and without the sheeps sheet.
Central City locations names are linked to Novagen or Birmingham areas. Jack Moorby was in charge for the design.

Thanks to: Jeremy Smith who scanned the English posters, to Andrew Williams and Guy Havers who offered to scan this item too, and to Stephen Stuttard who scanned the German version. I scanned the Datasoft version, and the French version, trying to make a "clean" version of it.

Posters in English - Novagen version
Posters in English - Datasoft version
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Posters in French - Novagen version
Posters in German - Novagen version
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Central City map - Novagen version
Jeremy Smith
light scan
Andrew William's
high res scan
Higher resolution (300 DPI) scan in 4 parts
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Interlude On Targ

Part of the Targ Survival Kit, Interlude On Targ is a novella, written by Bruce Jordan, giving some clues to the player that already knows the game a bit. It's also fun to read once you know a bit more about Novagen story (and stories). One can already read things that will be used in Damocles: Gamma-Five planet (Eris), Pulvin as energy source, ...

Thanks to: Jeremy Smith who re-typed the Novella years ago. The following PDF download is his work. If you like it, Jeremy has a whole website about games novellas. Sadly on this page the email, guestbook and bulletin board are down, so Jeremy if you ever read this please give us some news ;)


Download the novella (PDF)


Hint Sheet

The Hint Sheet was freely given by Novagen early 1986, by simple request. It pre-dates the Targ Survival Kit, and was advertised as being part of it in very early ads - but not in later ones. So it is unknown if it was actually part of it or not (and if so, how long).
It was initiated after some feedback from players looking for help, in the form of a free sheet, and possibly gave the idea of turning it into a nicer product.

Thanks to: Jeremy Smith again! He re-typed the whole sheet, here it is.

Mercenary - Escape From Targ

HINT SHEET

To begin by stating the obvious: Do read the Instruction Leaflet carefully. There are clues in it. The serious escapee will also take notes of relevant findings during exploration.

Then where to start? We suggest you follow Benson's prompt and buy the Dominion Dart so conveniently to hand. Walk over, stand at the centre and board (B). Take off, keying in a speed of 6 or 7.

Fly anywhere. No constraints - and no penalties, even if you crash! Surface structures are identifiable from below 250m ALTitude but are best appreciated below lOOm. Learn to navigate using the COMPass and Bensons' invaluable LOCation indicator. The city area is located within the co-ordinates 0 to 15 x 0 to 15 with other numbers from -99 to +99 of value in wasteland exploration. If ** shows, you' re really remote. But there are a few places of interest even out there, if you can find them. As an exercise in co-ordinate flying out in the wasteland, you may try targeting in on LOC 81-35.

You're unlikely to resist zapping anything for too long. Fire at the base of ground objects to initiate a spectacular collapse. Later on, you may be able to 'put the clock back' and perform a repair job. But for now, it's too late. On this occasion, your aggression is detected. The respondent, Palyar or Mechanoid, depends on who is in possesion of the site you have zapped. Worth noting!

You are under a relentless attack. Unless you can knock out the droid missile, it WILL find you and will home in for the kill. Try rapid flight backwards to keep it in view while you aim and fire!

It's in the spirit of the game that you are never killed. If you're hit, you loose your ship. Unless you know where to walk off and find another one, (or you have a spare in your pocket - but that's advanced play) you'll have to Quit to regain a Dominion Dart.

On use of the quit option, any objects that you hold will be dispersed throughout the landscape. (With a little thought, you can reduce the inconvenience of this.) But ideally, avoid aerial combat when carrying useful objects.

If you do loose something of value, note that moveable objects can be visible as 'dots' from a considerable distance. You might use this feature to establish your own landmarks with some objects deployed on the surface.

-1-

You're ready to go underground via an elevator cage. You choose the one at location 09-06 as you were directed there by the Palyars promising gainfull employment. Land centrally in the cage. Press E to gain access to the hanger below (1).

Leave your craft and walk off to explore the complex. You'll find various objects which you can 'take' if required. Most objects are named when you pick them up. There are some 'Sights' (2) which are particularly useful. But do you really need an Energy Crystal (3) here on Targ?

Following on from here, you should find an early objective: the Palyar briefing room (4). It seems that they will pay you for transporting useful supplies and objects up to their Colony Craft 'sky city'. They'll pay a big fee for a captured Mechanoid. They also promise their special gratitude for knocking out all the Mechanoid sites, but, only when you know how - which certainly isn't yet.

In your further exploration of this complex, you will come across a locked door in a corridor just off the hanger. Of course, there are going to be 'keys', and you should find one for this door (matching in shape) in the same complex, quite a walk away. A key worth finding, to reveal a Poweramp (5) directly behind the locked door.

Further on in this area, you can find a Communications Room (6) which is not, at this stage, in working order. If an Antenna (?) was present, you would learn of a ready, but expensive, escape route.

-2-

There's still more to see in this complex. You could find some Medical Supplies (7) and from the same room venture thronqh a door with two diagonal lines marked. You will be transported elsewhere, arriving at a room housing a Photon emitter. That could shed some light on something. The other exits from this room are locked, so back you go through the two-way transporter room.

The transporter rooms are a good way to get around, although some (marked with one diagonal) go just one way. Remember that the one-way links can leave you stranded without a craft. There are other links (apparently two-way) that seem quite unreliable. Transporter room types are colour coded, but only from the inside. All part of the learning experience!

The transporter room links provide a means of entry to all seven hanger complexes (only six of these being readily accessable from the surface). Two links also operate with the Colony Craft although one of these is most definitely out of order in it's effect.

On a full exploration, you will come across a host of objects. These will fall into the following categories:

There are many more, in each category, than the examples given, but we shall not spoil your enjoyment by telling more.

Having explored enough for now, you reboard your craft carrying loads of goodies that you've found. Having a limit of ten objects being carried at any one time, calls for some carefull planning if you're going to optimise the load. (If you temporarily store objects, putting too many in one place will slow down the graphics).

Now you are ready to go up to that 'dot' in the sky. If your ship lacks the extra power to reach it, you've overlooked an important item - remeber that Poweramp? Otherwise, on gaining an altitude of 65000m, there it is!

Your objective is to land on the square pad on the top surface. E for elevator, and in you go. As long as you have the key to entry, (you took our advice earlier on a co-ordinates flying exercise), there are three floors to explore, with a number of named rooms and offers of purchase where you have the matching 'requirement. For example, Gold delivered to the exchequer will yield 100000CR. All rooms named by Benson on entry, (other than Hanger, Bank, Briefing Rooms and Communications Room), offer an earning opportunity.

-3-

Build your credits on your visit to the Colony Craft by all means, but really before committing yourself, you might consider that the Mechanoids could have an interest in some of the goodies, and may pay more.

One hangar complex (at 03-00) is clearly under Mechanoid control. Indeed, you can meet their representative for a briefing. What did the Palyars say about a big fee? Perhaps you should transact any business you may have with the Mechanoids before unsettling them.

So you beaver away to amass some walth - carefully avoiding the hazards that may befall you, and carefull not to sell anything that may be useful to you in the future. Perhaps only inessentials should be sold.

It may be that you choose to buy your escape from Targ. Good fun as an exercise, and with the 'Game Save' facility (before cash changes hands) to make things easy, why not? But a thorough exploration of the planet otherwise will reveal an available intergallactic craft. Or what about that Palyar special gratitude? The challenge is not just to escape, although that is an achievement: As a true Mercenary, you'll want to leave with all the wealth that you can!

Oh yes! What to take through to Mercenary II. But then you haven't missed the cryptic clues have you?

-4-

Ads for the Targ Survival Kit

Here are a few ads that were in the games boxes. As you can see, the Kit was intially to be released for Christmas 1985, but in the classic Novagen schedule, it was released months later. Magazines from July 1986 report its release. The fact that the Central City map refers to airports linking to the Second City, confirms that the release wasn't 1985.

Now, see the three following ads, and make up your mind: has the hint sheet been part of the Survival Kit? A guess would be that the initial hint sheet would have been in the Kit until they ran out of stock?



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