Phoenix
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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...
 
***** Inter Galactic News *****

*** Wimbles Crisis Solved ***

The Wimble Crisis of 217 has come to an end with the human Baron making way to the wimble Grandfather Paden Mastaak. Celebrations were held in Wimbledon upon the news with crack teams of Wimble security staff guarding all the pies.

It’s unclear how long the Wimbles will enjoy this new era of peace and self-determination.

Vocal Wimble Dinasha, one of Paden’s early backers, has chosen this precarious moment to bait Dewiek, Flagritz and humans who were initially disposed to be friendly to the new administration. Whilst the Wimbles' history with the former-slave-loving Flagritz could be understood, their animosity towards the Dewiek and humans was more mysterious. One insider alluded to a rise in the number of cases of foot-and-mouth across the herd as being a likely cause.

Inside this issue of the SSS: * Storm in a Teacup *** Yahn Bares All * &etc

 
***** Inter Galactic News *****

*** Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door ***

The stargates are closed! Reports from multiple sources indicate at least three of the stargates, all within Dewiek controlled systems, have been closed.

Two different sources have indicated that the TCA have been spotted recently in a number of systems and may be behind this turn of events. A scan sent to the SSS indicated eight TCA ships were recently spotted first in the Faery system and later near the Kasmer stargate.

Another source, suspiciously put the blame on the ARC, suggesting the ARC and DEN were working together because they “need to trap [the TCA] and try and finish them off after the DEN bodged their operation to protect the ARC while they incinerated the MEK homeworld, which ended up with several ARC ships being destroyed and the job only being half done."

However, with no public statement from the Dewiek themselves, its hard to know whether these rumours are reliable.

Lord Igor of the Dominion and Erasmus Andersen of the Garcia Family both offered public apologies at the delay in meeting their trade commitments because of the recent closures. The not-so-subtle subtext being that someone will pay with blood for this interference in their business. Or at least with a stealthy price rise.

Inside this issue of the SSS: * Wimble Civil Strife * Who Sniffs the Sniffers? * Largin’ It * &etc

 
***** Inter Galactic News *****

*** Videtis quantum scelus contra rem publicam vobis nuntiatum sit? ***

The Flagritz Empire is no more! The Flagritz Republic is reborn! Quick on the heel of the collapse of the Empire, the Fessin caste declared a new era of foreign and economic policy with a rapid withdrawal behind the Black Gate.

The new ecologically-friendly Prime Minister Kayxaer, asked for patience as “economic” reforms were undertaken. It remains to be seen whether there will be any price to pay for the dramatic changes being made by the reclusive Flagritzi or whether it will all be sunshine and rainbows going forward.

Inside this issue of the SSS: * Large at Large * &etc

 
***** Inter Galactic News *****

*** Bravo for Freedom ***

Naplian Forces have attacked three human pirate outposts in the Morroglyph system. A spokesperson for Naplia HQ told the press that the plucky duct-tape loving free people would continue their war against slavers and pirates in their home periphery.

One salty Naplian libertarian told the SSS, “The people of the Naplian Home Periphery are sick and tired of human criminals coming here just because their homeworld is an overcrowded hell. It’s time for them to go back home.”

Inside this issue of the SSS: * Igor of Fang and Horns * Admiral Loves Dick Turpin * &etc

 
***** Inter Galactic News *****

.What is It?
..a wOrmhOle?.
…No.. worse..
….the KANG singularity!…
…..It pulls us IN…..
……lOOks sO familiar……
…….yet so strange…….
……..what is……..
………that?……..

*** Flagritz Liberalise Economy ***

In good news for all the galaxy the Flagritzi have vowed to liberate all slaves across their Empire. Furthermore, the hectapods have given up eating other sentient species; taking up a strict diet of veganism and soy chai lattes. Sales of turtle neck sweaters and Forbidden Fruit laptops have skyrocketed.

The news was cautiously welcomed by the benevolent Felini Tyranny who looked forward to reducing the War phase of their daily Nap-Lick-Nap-War-Nap-Eat-Sleep cycle to a perfunctory forty winks.

Inside this issue of the SSS: * Baron Womble * A Short History of the DPP * &etc

 
***** Inter Galactic News *****

*** Empire Strikes: Solo ***

A massive fleet of some 1600 warships, including large numbers of super-heavy capital 300 and 400 hullers, attacked the DEN in the Solo system, catching them with their metaphorical pants down. The DEN gate platform and some two hundred DEN freighters were subject to antimatter missiles amongst other high tech ordinance.

Jack the lad, Viceroy of the Empire, claimed a victory for freedom and the Imperial (right of) way leaving the sullen Dewiek unusually unresponsive.

With DOM platforms firing on CIA ships, will the IMP now demand the DOM add them to the Do Not Fire lists as well? And what exactly is the nature of the DOM and DEN alliance in light of the sustained attack from the Empire? And will the DEN’s alien friends stand idly by as the Empire fleet camps in the vital gate system of Solo? How will the DEN retaliate for this action or are they ready to roll over and have their bellies rubbed?

All this remains unknown. All that is certain is the “feel good” factor across the DTR has increased, with citizens reassured that for some time yet, they may continue in their slumber with the easy assurance that their number is not coming up anytime soon.

Inside this issue of the SSS: * New BHD Guy * DOM Statement * &etc

 
***** Inter Galactic News *****

*** To Ur Is Dewiek ***

Dewiek forces had a hefty smackdown against the mysterious living ships known as the T’Cath (TCA). Seven adult TCA 400 hull capital ships, each firing eight of their notorious plasma cannons, were killed by a DEN and DOM fleet of some 700 ships.

Of the minimal losses suffered by the DEN / DOM, one-eyed Magnus and Nevets Motnhap of the FEL were amongst the dead.

Inside this issue of the SSS: * Caribbean Congo Continues * Ur Witness Report * * Hive Briefing * &etc

 
***** Inter Galactic News *****

*** The Long Quiet Season ***

Listen…
There’s no sound of anger or of annoyance,
There’re neither cruisers racing on the jump lanes
Nor there jump lanes for them to race on,
There’re neither monks chanting on the battlegrounds
Nor bells calling us to the True One.
There’s neither the lightning cracking of the sky
Nor the persistent Naplians pattering on my roof.
There’s no Dewiek arm in arm to admire the magnificent view
There’re no war drums to feed Human ears
Nor Hive sirens to steal the boredom away
There’s no unfamiliar wing creeping underneath the Falconian sun
Nor floods to enshroud the Aquaphid grounds
The land lies lonely out here
On this lazy summer’s day
There’s no pollution to poison the airs of Inversion
Nor forests to give them life
All I hear is the hushing sound of the wind
Assisting the sand to fall into beautiful undulations.

Whilst we’ve been away: * Operation Giantslayer * Naplian Liberation * Back in the DTTR * &etc

 
***** Inter Galactic News *****

*** Falconians Saved ***

The Imperials have cunningly saved the Falconian Republic from being consumed by the Dewiek Elder Nation and at no small cost to the DEN either. Whilst the new pro tem Consul crowed about the “victory”, all former FCN systems besides Acropolis have been taken over by the two warring Empires - Human and Flagritz.

Was it all worth it? For the IMP / GTT it clearly was, for the movement of a few hundred thousand troops is surely nothing to the cost they endured trying to and failing to knock the DEN out of Solo after the fact. The FCN now plucked off most of their navy and wider assets are a tiny nothing of their former self. The DEN may have resorted to some dirty namecalling but can the costs endured to save an enfeebled FCN have really been worth it? Time will tell.

Inside this issue of the SSS: * INDignation * FELicitous Caribbean * Nah Plan for Naplia * Mercs Trouble DEN * &etc

 

Free Ship when you sign-up
Complete missions for in game rewards
Control everything, up to an entire empire
Dedicated human moderators
Player and Moderator driven plotlines
Discover new worlds to explore, exploit & colonise
Over 20 years of content development
Persistent Browser-Based Game (PBBG)

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