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DECWAR Version 2.2, June 3, 1980
DECWAR is a real time space battle game designed to be played by
from 1 to 18 people. The object of the game is to destroy all enemy
bases and ships, and capture all enemy planets, before the enemy does
the same to you. Each person plays on a separate terminal, and enters
the game by typing
Players are free to enter and leave the game as desired, since each
has his own job and therefore won't interfere with the other players
(the jobs interact through a shareable high segment).
The first person to run the game selects the startup options.
The startup options are:
1. Regular or Tournament game. A regular game randomly
initializes the galaxy. A tournament game prompts for a
startup code. Each tournament game played with the same code
has the same initial galaxy setup. Answering with a <CR>
defaults to a Regular (ie random) game setup.
2. Include Romulans. Romulans are nasty beasts that beginners
are better off without. However, if you're the only person
playing, the Romulan is your only competition. Romulans tend
to make for shorter games, and answering with a <CR> defaults
to include Romulans in the game.
3. Include black holes. Black holes are annoying, since if you
are displaced into one, you're dead. They also tend to
gobble up stray torpedos. Answering with a <CR> defaults to
NOT include any black holes.
There are two primary opposing forces in the galaxy -- Humans
(Federation) and Klingons (Empire). As you enter the game for the
first time, you get to choose which side you'll join (unless there is
a large imbalance in the team sizes). If you are subsequently
destroyed and later reenter the game, you automatically rejoin your
You get to select the ship you want to control from a list of
remaining ships on your side. There are 9 ships on each side:
Federation ships Empire ships
---------- ----- ------ -----
Due to continuous espionage activities, present front-line ships
of the Federation and the Klingon Empire are identical in strength and
weaponry. These ships can move from sector to sector using either
warp or impulse engines, can attack enemy installations and ships
using either photon torpedoes or phasers, and can defend themselves
against such attack using their deflector shields. All ships also
possess sub-space radios which keep them in touch with friendly
starbases and other ships.
The various devices of a ship are subject to damage. This damage
may be due to enemy attack or to over use. These damages, unlike
total ship damage (see ship attributes below), may be repaired while
underway. If damage on a device is less than 300 units, its
performance is degraded. If damage is 300 or more units, the device
is inoperative. A ship possesses the following devices:
1. Warp Engines -- These engines are the normal mode of travel
for starships. The maximum speed is warp factor 6, with
warps 5 and 6 risking potential damage to the engines. If
warp engines are damaged (less than 300 units) the maximum
speed is warp factor 3.
2. Impulse Engines -- These engines are basically for emergency
use while the warp engines are critically damaged. Impulse
engines move the ship at warp factor 1.
3. Photon Torpedo Tubes -- Used to fire photon torpedoes. If
these tubes are damaged, the accuracy of torpedo bursts is
impaired. The maximum torpedo range is 10 sectors.
4. Phaser Banks -- Each ship possesses two phaser banks, with a
single phaser control. Damage to this phaser control or to
the ship's computer reduces the strength of the phaser hit.
5. Deflector Shields -- The deflector shields of a ship protect
it from damage from phaser and photon torpedo hits, and
shield it from the energy released when a star goes nova.
The percent shield strength indicates the percent of the
incoming hit which will be nullified. In addition, strong
deflector shields may deflect photon torpedoes with little or
no damage. NOTE: If a ship's shields are up, the amount of
energy expended during movement is doubled.
6. Computer -- The ship's computer is used for computed firing,
computation during ship movement, and for phaser control. If
the computer is inoperative, navigation during warp and
impulse movement becomes inexact.
7. Life Support -- If the life support units of a starship are
inoperative, the ship must either repair this damage or dock
within 5 stardates. If this is not accomplished, the crew
8. Sub-Space Radio -- The sub-space radio is used to communicate
with other ships, of either side. Bases under attack also
use the sub-space radio to call for help and notify their
team's ships of their destruction.
9. Tractor Beam -- The ship's tractor beam is used primarily to
tow damaged friendly ships away from danger. The beam can
not be used unless both ships have lowered their shields.
In addition to the individual devices discussed above, a newly
commissioned ship (or a fully repaired and rearmed older ship)
possesses the following attributes:
1. 5000 units of ship energy. Ship energy is used during
movement and phaser firing. It is also decreased each time
the ship gets hit with phasers or photon torpedoes. If this
quantity ever reaches zero, the ship is dead. A ship
possessing 1000 units of ship energy or less automatically
goes to yellow alert, and a warning bell sounds after every
2. 2500 units of shield energy. This energy is stored in the
ship's shields (whether up or down), and is separate from the
ship energy. However, energy may be transferred between
these two energy reserves as needed. If shields are up,
their energy is decreased each time the ship gets hit.
3. Zero units of ship damage. During battle, a ship collects
hits from enemy installations and ships. If these
accumulated hits ever reach 2500 units of damage or greater,
the ship is destroyed. Ship damage may be reduced only by
The galaxy is arranged in a grid of 75 by 75 sectors. Players
can move freely throughout the galaxy in search of enemies, which come
in several categories:
1. Romulan. This can be the most dangerous thing to come up
against, and fortunately there is a maximum of 1 Romulan in
the game at any given time. The Romulan moves around
concealed by his cloaking device until he comes across a
suitable target (Federation or Empire ship or base) which he
immediately proceeds to attack. An infinite supply of
torpedoes and energy make him a formidable foe. If you kill
one, another will eventually appear somewhere in the galaxy.
2. Enemy ship. This is the second most dangerous thing to come
across, since all enemy ships are backed by human
intelligence. All ships are created equal, and so the
outcome of a clash between two ships is usually due to skill
on its captain's part, although some other factors do come
3. Enemy base. These aren't dangerous unless you come within
range (4 sectors) since they are immobile. If you ARE
foolish enough to get within range, however, their
overwhelming phaser power will quickly pound you into rubble!
Destroying a base is useful primarily because this removes it
from use by your enemy (bases are used as supply stations and
as a refuge in times of stress). A damaged starbase will
slowly build itself back to full strength if it is not
4. Enemy planet. These are just like enemy bases, except that
they are weaker (how much weaker depends on how many
fortifications the enemy has built on them), and they can be
captured. Their firing range is only two sectors, and they
can re-supply the enemy less rapidly than can a base.
5. Neutral planet. While these aren't strictly classified as
enemies, they will take pot shots at you (their range is also
2 sectors), so be wary of them. You can capture neutral
planets and win them over to your side.
When playing the game, all commands can be abbreviated to 2
characters, and some can be abbreviated to 1 character (you can use
the shortest unambiguous abbreviation). For a list of commands type
and for a description of an individual command type
The help on individual commands will be read from this help file
(that's what the periods in column 1 are for in the long description
of each command). The legal commands are:
1. BASES -- List information on friendly and known enemy bases.
2. BUILD -- Develop installations on a planet, and eventually
build it into a base. The planet must first be captured.
3. CAPTURE -- Win a neutral or enemy planet over to your side.
4. DAMAGES -- List damaged devices and their current status.
5. DOCK -- Dock at an adjacent base or planet. This increases
your energy, replenishes your torpedoes, repairs your ship a
little, and reduces your ship damage.
6. ENERGY -- Transfer energy between two ships.
7. GRIPE -- Record bugs, comments, suggestion, etc. in the file
GAM:DECWAR.GRP, which is periodically reviewed by the
8. HELP -- List or describe the legal commands.
9. IMPULSE -- Move using impulse engines.
10. LIST -- List various information about ships, bases, and
11. MOVE -- Move using warp engines.
12. NEWS -- Tell about any new features or enhancements described
in the file GAM:DECWAR.NWS.
13. PHASERS -- Fire phasers at a target.
14. PLANETS -- List information on friendly and known enemy and
15. POINTS -- List your score breakdown so far.
16. QUIT -- Get out of the game.
17. RADIO -- Turn ship's sub-space radio on or off; ignore or
restore communications from individual ships.
18. REPAIR -- Repair your damaged devices a little.
19. SCAN -- Display the galaxy with the default range set to
maximum (10 sectors in each direction from your ship).
20. SET -- Set various input and output defaults.
21. SHIELDS -- Transfer energy to or from your shields; raise or
lower your shields.
22. SRSCAN -- Display the galaxy with a default range of 7
sectors (1 greater than the maximum warp factor).
23. STATUS -- List your ship's current status and supply levels.
24. SUMMARY -- List various information on ships, bases, and
25. TARGETS -- List targets (enemies within range) and their
26. TELL -- Send messages to other ships using the sub-space
27. TIME -- List information on run time and elapsed time.
28. TORPEDOES -- Fire photon torpedoes at a target.
29. TRACTOR -- Use tractor beam to tow friendly ships.
30. TYPE -- List current input, output, and game characteristics.
31. USERS -- List the names and other information known about the
players currently in the game.
General INPUT information
- Only the first 5 characters of each input word are stored. Any
characters beyond that are ignored.
- Input words may be separated by spaces, tabs, or commas.
- The input line can be terminated with <CR>, <LF>, <VT>, <FF>, <ESC>,
- ^G toggles echo. At the beginning of each input line, echoing is
turned on. Typing ^G turns it off, the next ^G turns it back on,
etc. Echoing is always turned back on at the end of an input line,
or if ^U is typed.
- Multiple commands may be given on a single command line by
separating the commands with / (slash). If the TELL command is
given, it must be last on the line.
- Anything after ; (semicolon) is treated as a comment and is ignored
(but TELL rescans the line and takes the text after the first ; as
the message to send).
- <ESC> (escape, or altmode) entered as the first character in
response to the command prompt (even before ^H, ^U, or ^R) repeats
the previous command. This is useful when building a planet,
docking, repairing, firing torpedoes, etc. Altmode can't be used to
repeat a TELL command.
- Any ship name can be abbreviated to 1 character.
- Any command or keyword can be shortened to the shortest unambiguous
abbreviation, which is never more than 2 characters.
- Many commands require a coordinate as an argument (PHASERS,
TORPEDOES, CAPTURE, BUILD, etc.). The required coordinate(s) can be
specified in one of three ways:
Absolute - the default coordinate input type, which is simply an
absolute vertical position followed by an absolute horizontal
position. The coordinate may be preceded by the keyword ABSOLUTE,
but this isn't necessary unless the default coordinate input type
has been changed by SET ICDEF RELATIVE.
Relative - the keyword RELATIVE, followed by a relative vertical
distance and a relative horizontal distance. A positive distance
is either up or right, and negative is either down or left. The
absolute coordinate is computed by adding the relative distances
to your current position. The keyword RELATIVE isn't needed if
the default coordinate input type has been changed by SET ICDEF
Computed - the keyword COMPUTED followed by a ship name. The
coordinate used is the location of the given ship. This type of
coordinate computation is available only to captains controlling
their ships through slow terminals (< 1200 baud), and requires an
The keyword ABSOLUTE, RELATIVE, or COMPUTED is only given one time
for each set of coordinates. For instance, the TORPEDO command can
accept up to 3 coordinates, but the keyword describing the
coordinate input type is given only once, and all coordinates must
be of the same type.
General OUTPUT information
The SET OUTPUT LONG/MEDIUM/SHORT command controls the length of text
output throughout the game. In particular, Medium or Short hit
messages received during battle are greatly reduced in length when
compared to the Long format. Unfortunately, these shorter forms are
not as self-explanatory as the Long form. The following are some
equivalent Long, Medium and Short hit messages:
- Goblin @22-31, +83.6% makes 285.3 unit torpedo hit on
Vulcan displaced to 20-31, +72.1%
G @22-31, +83.6% 285.3 unit T V -->20-31, +72.1%
G 22-31 +83 285T V >20-31 +72
- Emp planet(3) @15-16 makes 155.5 unit phaser hit on
Buzzard @15-17, 66.8%
-@3 @15-16 155.5 unit P B @15-17, 66.8%
-@3 15-16 155P B 15-17 +66
Note: The -@3 indicates an Empire planet built 3 times.
- Star @22-31 +4,+2 makes 301.2 unit hit on
Panther displaced to 20-31 +2,+2, -72.1%
* @22-31 +4,+2 301.2 unit N P -->20-31 +2,+2, -72.1%
* 22-31 +4,+2 301N P >20-31 +2,+2, -72
Note: The relative coordinates appear due to a SET OCDEF BOTH
command. The Panther's shields are 72.1% of max strength, but down
Use of the DECWAR.INI file
After initialization (picking which side and ship), DECWAR looks for
the file DECWAR.INI in the UFD of the logged in PPN. If it finds one,
it displays the message
[Reading commands from DECWAR.INI]
and reads the lines from the file just as if they were being typed
from the TTY (it echoes the commands as they are read). After all
commands have been read and executed, DECWAR switches to TTY input and
displays the message
[Reading commands from TTY]
Typical commands to be executed from DECWAR.INI include the various
SET commands, and information getting commands such as TARGETS and
SCAN. A typical DECWAR.INI file might contain:
set prompt informative ;change prompt to ">"
set ocdef both ;want absolute and relative coords
set output medium ;don't want info output for novices
targets ;just to see who's around
srscan 2 w ;take a quick peek
Note that the comment character ; (semicolon) and the echo control
character ^G (CTL-G) can also be used in DECWAR.INI. If you don't
want the comment to be echoed at run time, simply precede it with ^G
to turn echoing off while the comment is scanned.
The Decwar PRE-GAME feature
DECWAR provides a Pre-game feature to allow:
- New players to view the help file without entering the current game.
- Experienced players to check the status of a current game before
choosing a side and ship.
- Players to submit Gripes without entering the game.
The commands currently active within the Pre-game section are:
Activate Gripe Help News Points Quit
Summary Time Users
The ACTIVATE command (valid only in the pre-game) is used to exit the
pre-game section and enter the normal ship setup stage. The pre-game
can be recognized from the 'PG>' command prompt, as well as the DECWPG
Some general HINTS
- When in doubt, use the on-line help system. See the help on HELP
for more information.
- If the output starts piling up in the middle of a battle, type ^O
(CTL-O). None of your commands will be executed until output is
finished, so it's sometimes better just to ignore the hit messages
so your attack or run commands can be executed immediately.
- Use multiple commands per line (separate commands with /). Once
you're in a danger area, things can happen faster than you can react
to them. Plan your action ahead of time, before you enter a danger
- If some unexpected action happens, such as an enemy finding you, and
you have several stacked commands (either from a multiple command
line or typing ahead), type ^C to abort all stacked commands
(especially if it involves time consuming commands such as BUILD, or
commands that generate a lot of output, such as SCAN). You can then
proceed to remedy the situation by giving your unexpected visitor a
- If you're on a slow terminal, use computed coordinates, and move
around a lot if you're fighting someone on a fast terminal.
Computed coordinates are the primary advantage slow terminals have
over the fast ones (computed coordinates give slow terminals a
fantastic tactical advantage over fast terminals when used
- Use <ESC> to repeat commands (see the help on ESCAPE). It's just a
convenience when building planets, etc., but in battle, and combined
with multiple commands per line and/or computed coordinates (such as
PH C B/M R 1 0 or TO 1 32 45), it can make or break your career as
a starship captain.
- Don't get within range of an enemy base, unless you enjoy being
pounded into rubble. You can kill a base just as well from 1 sector
outside it's range (use the WARNING keyword on SCAN to see the range
of an enemy base).
- Don't waste your energy and torpedoes firing at friendly ships and
bases. If you're not sure if it's friendly or not, type HELP SCAN
for a list of what's what. You can also use the TARGETS command to
see which enemies are lurking about (see the help on TARGETS and
- Don't make it a habit of sitting next to stars; photon torpedoes
can turn them into novas, which are extremely destructive.
Conversely, if you notice an enemy ship or base adjacent to a star,
take advantage of the situation!
- One sure way to locate enemy ships is to watch for newly captured
enemy planets by using the PLANETS or LIST command.
- In general, don't waste photon torpedoes battering at a target with
85-100% shields. The chances are good that they will just be
deflected harmlessly away. Use your phasers to weaken the shields,
then use torpedoes to finish him off. This is especially true when
attempting to destroy an enemy starbase.
- Use the SET command in DECWAR.INI to personalize the output to your
own tastes. That way you'll be guaranteed to have the output set
right each time you play a game.
- To always see the range and direction of any object listed (in hit
messages, output from the LIST command, etc.), SET OCDEF BOTH. (The
range is the magnitude of either delta v or delta h, whichever is
Commands that take real time
Many of the commands are designed to take a certain amount of real
time. This is done to help equalize the game when there are different
speed terminals and different speed typists in the game. Some
commands take a constant amount of time, and some are based on the
speed of the slowest terminal in the game.
BUILD 5 to 7 seconds
CAPTURE 5 seconds + 1 second for each BUILD of enemy planet
DOCK 2 to 4 seconds
IMPULSE 2 to 4 seconds
MOVE 2 to 4 seconds
REPAIR (0.08 * repair size) seconds (* 0.5 if docked)
You have 2 phaser banks, each of which must be cooled off after it's
fired before it can be used again. Each phaser bank takes 3 to 6
seconds plus the amount of phaser damage / 100 to cool off. For
instance, if there was a 300 baud terminal in the game, and your
phasers had 200 units of damage, each of your phaser banks would take
6 + 2 = 8 seconds to cool off after being fired. Therefore, you could
fire once every 4 seconds, or twice every 8 seconds.
After each burst of torpedoes the tubes must be reloaded before being
used again. It takes 2 to 4 seconds plus the amount of torpedo tube
damage / 100 to load a torpedo. For instance, if there was a 300 baud
terminal in the game, your torpedoes had 200 units of damage, and you
had just fired 3 torpedoes, it would take 3 * (4 + 2) = 18 seconds
before you could fire torpedoes again.
Use of ^C
If you're in command input wait (DECWAR is waiting for you to type a
command, and the program name is set to DECWTI), typing ^C will abort
the game and return you to monitor mode. When you abort the game in
this manner, your ship is returned to the pool of available ships.
You will be able to continue unless a new player has taken your ship
or someone has moved into the spot you occupied.
If you're not in a command input wait state when you type ^C, any
stacked commands (commands that you typed in ahead of time that
haven't been executed yet) will be aborted, and a series of bells will
NOTE: A ship under RED alert conditions can not be returned to the
monitor level except by using the QUIT command.
Use of ^T
The program name changes during different stages. During startup, it
will be DECWAR. When waiting for input, it will be DECWTI. When
executing a command, it will be DECWRN. When sleeping after a command
that takes time (MOVE, CAPTURE, BUILD, etc.) it will be DECWSL. You
can tell what state the game is in by typing ^T and looking at the
program name displayed. This is useful when you're not sure if it's
waiting for a command yet or still executing a series of commands you
typed in ahead of time. If the player is not in the game itself but
just in the Pre-game section, the program name is DECWPG.
List various BASE information
Syntax: BAses [<keywords>]
List location and shield percent of friendly bases; location of known
enemy bases; or count of bases of either side within a specified
range or the entire galaxy. The default range is the entire galaxy,
and the default side is friendly bases only. See the help for LIST
for more information and the complete set of keywords that can be used
to modify BASES output.
BA List location and shield percent of all friendly
BA ENEMY List location of all known enemy bases.
BA SUM Give summary of all friendly bases.
BA ALL SUM Give summary of all bases.
BA CL List the location and shield percent of the closest
BA 34 26 List the location and shield percent of friendly base
at 34-26 (it doesn't have to be friendly, but you
can't see the shield percent of an out of range enemy
BUILD fortifications on a captured planet
Syntax: BUild [Absolute|Relative] <vpos> <hpos>
A fortified planet hits harder and is more resistant to destruction by
the enemy. A planet can normally be built up to 4 times. As your
team's starbases are destroyed by enemy action, a fifth build will
complete the construction of a new starbase on the planet. Only 10
starbases can be functional at any one time.
BU 32 12 Build the planet at sector 32-12.
BU A 32 12 Equivalent to "BU 32 12"
BU R 1 1 Build the planet at sector 32-12, if your present
location is 31-11.
CAPTURE a neutral or enemy planet
Syntax: CApture [Absolute|Relative] <vpos> <hpos>
At the start of the game, all planets are neutral (they fire at
everyone!). Once captured by either side, they fire only at enemy
ships, and can be DOCKed at to refuel and rearm, just like a base
(except a planet can only supply half the resources that a base can).
Enemy planets can also be captured. When capturing an enemy planet, 1
second is added to the normal pause time of 5 seconds for each BUILD
present. Also, 50 units of ship energy are lost for each build.
CA 12 32 Capture planet at 12-32.
CA A 12 32 Equivalent to "CA 12 32".
CA R 1 1 Capture planet at sector 12-32, if your present
location is 11-31.
Syntax: DAmages [<device names>]
List damaged ship devices and the amount of damage to each. The
condition of all or just selected devices may be examined. Total ship
damage is not reported.
DA List all damaged devices and their current damages.
DA SH T List damages for SHields and Torpedo tubes.
DA PH RA C List damages for PHasers, sub-space RAdio, and
DOCK at a friendly base or planet
Syntax: DOck [Status [<device names>]]
Refuel, repair, and rearm your ship, and set your ship's condition to
green. While docked, any repairs are accelerated, and you have an
"infinite" supply of torps. If you have no damages and are completely
refueled and rearmed, DOCKing will have no effect on your ship. A
STATUS command string can be appended to a DOCK order. The following
table lists the maximum resources available per move when DOCKing at a
base or planet:
Resource Base Planet
Ship energy +1000 +500
Shield energy +500 +250
Photon Torpedoes +10 +5
Life Support Reserves +5 +5
Ship Damage -100 -50
Ship Damage, if already docked -200 -100
DO Dock, no status report.
DO ST Dock, show ship's status AFTER docking.
DO ST SH T Dock, show ship's shield strength and number of
torpedos on board AFTER docking.
Transfer ENERGY to a friendly ship
Syntax: Energy <ship name> <units of energy to transfer>
The receiving ship must be located in an adjacent sector. 10% of the
energy transferred will be lost due to broadcast dissipation. If you
attempt to send more energy than the other ship can store (ie 5000
units), the transfer will automatically be reduced to the maximum
E I 1000 Transfer 1000 units of energy to the Intrepid. The
Intrepid will receive 900 units of energy.
Submit a GRIPE
Add a comment, bug report, suggestion, etc. to the top of file
GAM:DECWAR.GRP. Type in your comments, then ^Z (CTL-Z) to exit and
continue the game, or ^C (CTL-C) to abort and not send the gripe.
Each gripe is preceded with a header that includes the version number,
date, time, ship name, user name, TTY speed, PPN, TTY number, job
number, and whether or not Romulans and/or black holes are included in
the game. Unless you are currently under red alert, GRIPE will
protect you from enemy attack. To view gripes not yet acted upon,
type the file GAM:DECWAR.GRP. To view answered gripes, and see what
action was taken on them, type the file GAM:DECWAR.FXD.
Syntax: Help [*|<keywords>]
Give general help info, a list of available commands, or a detailed
description of a particular command or keyword. Unless you are under
red alert, HELP will protect you from enemy attack. The following
conventions are used in the detailed descriptions:
- The first line contains, in all caps, the keyword that help is being
- The syntax line (second line) lists the portion of the keyword
required to make it unique in caps, and the remainder of the keyword
in lower case, followed by any parameters (if the keyword is a
- A quantity to be filled in is lower case and enclosed in <> (angle
- Optional parameters are enclosed in  (square brackets).
- A choice (either or) is indicated by | (vertical bar).
- Any parameter that must be typed in literally is started in capital
letters and continued in lower case. The upper case letters signal
the shortest unambiguous abbreviation (the shortest abbreviation may
change slightly, depending on context).
H Give general help info.
H * List all available commands.
H H List this block of text.
H SH Give help for the SHIELDS command.
H HI G Give some general HINTS and a description of the GRIPE
Move using IMPULSE engines
Syntax: Impulse [Absolute|Relative] <vpos> <hpos>
Move one sector vertically, horizontally, or diagonally (equivalent to
warp factor 1). Ship condition changes to green.
I 37 45 Move to sector 37-45.
I A 37 45 Equivalent to "I 37 45".
I R 1 -1 Move to sector 37-45, if your ship's present location
LIST ship, base, and planet info
Syntax: List [<keywords>]
The following information is available via the LIST command:
- Name of any ship currently in the game (including the Romulan).
- Location and shield percent of any friendly ship, or any ship within
scan range (10 sectors).
- Location and shield percent of any friendly base, or any base within
- Location of any known enemy base (any base that has previously been
SCANned or LISTed by anyone on your team).
- Location and number of builds of any known planet, or any planet
The above information is also available, in whole or in part, through
the SUMMARY, BASES, PLANETS, and TARGETS commands. Each command has
it's own default range, side (Federation, Empire, Romulan, Neutral),
and object (ship, base, planet). LIST (and SUMMARY) include
everything (infinite range, all sides, all objects) by default. On
output, enemy objects are flagged with * (star) in column 1 unless the
command is TARGETS.
Keywords used with BASES, PLANETS, TARGETS, LIST, and SUMMARY (not all
keywords are legal for all commands):
ship names Include only specified ships (several ship names may
be given, including Romulan).
vpos hpos List only the object at the location vpos-hpos.
CLosest List only the closest of the specified objects.
SHips Include only ships (Federation, Empire, or Romulan).
BAses Include only bases (Federation or Empire).
PLanets Include only planets (Federation, Empire, or Neutral).
POrts Include only bases and planets. If no side is
specified (Federation, Empire, Neutral, or Captured),
include only friendly ports.
FEderation Include only Federation forces.
HUman Same as Federation.
EMpire Include only Empire forces.
Klingon Same as Empire.
FRiendly Include only friendly forces (Federation or Empire).
ENemy Include only enemy forces (Empire or Federation and
TArgets Same as enemy.
NEutral Include only neutral planets.
CAptured Include only captured planets (Federation or Empire).
n Include only objects within n sectors.
ALl Include all sides unless a side is explicitly given.
Extend the range to infinity unless a range is
LIst List individual items. Turn off summary unless
command is SUMMARY or the keyword SUMMARY is
SUmmary List summary of all selected items. Turn off list
unless command is LIST or the keyword LIST is
specified. Extend the range to infinity unless a
range is explicitly given.
And Used to separate groups of keywords.
& Same as AND.
LIST List all information available on all ships, bases,
LIST SUM List all available info plus a summary of the number
of each object in game.
LI EN BA List the location of all known enemy bases.
LI SH List all available info on all ships in the game.
LI CL PO List closest friendly base or friendly or neutral
LI 1 3 & 9 5 List the objects at locations 1-3 and 9-5.
MOVE using warp drive
Syntax: Move [Absolute|Relative|Computed] <vpos> <hpos>
Maximum speed is warp factor 6, which will move you 6 sectors per
turn. Maximum SAFE speed is warp factor 4; warp factors 5 and 6 risk
potential warp engine damage. Energy consumption per move is
proportional to the square of the warp factor. If the ship's shields
are up during this movement, the energy consumption is doubled.
Moving changes your ship's condition to green.
M 37 45 Move to sector 37-45.
M A 37 45 Equivalent to "M 37 45".
M R 4 -5 Move to sector 37-45, if your present location is
33-50 (move up 4 sectors and left 5 sectors).
M C W "Ram" the Wolf. No actual collision occurs, but your
ship ends up adjacent to the Wolf's current position.
Display the NEWS file
Display GAM:DECWAR.NWS, which contains information on any new
features, enhancements, bug fixes, etc for each version of DECWAR.
Fire PHASERS at an enemy ship, base, or planet
Syntax: PHasers [Absolute|Relative|Computed] [energy] <vpos> <hpos>
Phasers must be directed at a specific target, and only one target may
be specified per command. Obstacles seemingly in the path of the
phaser blast are unaffected, since the energy ray is not a line-of-
sight weapon. The size of the hit is inversely proportional to the
distance from the target. Maximum range is 10 sectors vertically,
horizontally, or diagonally. Each phaser blast consumes 200 units of
ship energy, unless a specific amount of energy is given (the
specified energy must be between 50 and 500 units, inclusive). The
phaser banks have roughly a 5% chance of damage with a default (200
unit) blast, with the probability of damage reaching nearly 65% with a
maximum (500 unit) blast. The severity of the resulting damage is
also dependant on the size of the blast. Also, if your ship's shields
are up, a high-speed shield control is used to quickly lower and then
restore the shields during the fire. This procedure consumes another
200 units of ship energy. The weapons officer on board your ship will
cancel all phaser blasts directed against friendly ships, bases, or
planets. Firing phasers (or getting hit by phasers) puts you on red
alert. NOTE: Although phasers can damage enemy planetary
installations (BUILDs), they can NOT destroy the planet itself.
PH 12 32 Phaser target at sector 12-32.
PH A 12 32 Equivalent to "PH 12 32".
PH R 2 -3 Phaser target at sector 12-32, if your location is
PH C BUZZARD Phaser the Buzzard (if in range).
PH C B Same as PH C BUZZARD (ship names can be abbreviated to
PH 300 12 32 Phaser target at sector 12-32, using 300 units of
List various PLANET information
Syntax: PLanets [<keywords>]
List location and number of builds for all known planets, and a
summary of planets within a specified range or the entire galaxy. The
default range is 10 sectors, and the default side is every side. See
the help for LIST for more information and the complete set of
keywords that can be used to modify PLANETS output.
PL List all planets within 10 sectors.
PL SUM Give summary of all planets in game.
PL ALL NEU List all known neutral planets.
PL ALL CAP List all known captured planets.
PL ALL 20 List all known planets within a radius of 20 sectors.
List POINTS scored so far this game
Syntax: POints [Me|I|Federation|Human|Empire|Klingon|Romulan|All]
Itemize the current point breakdown. Information can be obtained
concerning the points scored by your individual ship, your team, the
opposition, the romulans, or any combination of the above. If the
Romulan Empire is not involved in the game, the ROMULAN keyword will
Categories in POINTS breakdown:
- Damage to enemies.
- Enemies destroyed (500 points each).
- Damage to bases.
- Planets captured (100 points each).
- Bases built (1000 points each).
- Romulans damaged/destroyed.
- Stars destroyed (-50 points each).
- Planets destroyed (-100 points each).
- Total points scored.
- Total number of ships commissioned.
- Total score / number of players.
- Total score / stardates.
PO List points for your ship.
PO ME Equivalent to "PO".
PO KLI FED List the score of the two teams.
PO ALL List all the scoring information available.
QUIT the game
Quit the game before normal end of execution and return to the
monitor. Your ship is released for use by another player, you're
chalked up as just one more casualty, and you can't CONTINUE the game.
If you want to rejoin the game, you'll have to wait 2 minutes, and
then either START or RUN the game. If you want to exit the game
temporarily (to answer SENDS, etc.), type ^C (CTL-C), and you'll
usually be able to CONTINUE. NOTE: If you're under red alert, you
won't be able to ^C out of the game; you'll have to use the QUIT
Turn sub-space RADIO on or off, or
set to ignore or restore communications from individual ships
Syntax: RAdio ON|OFf or RAdio Gag|Ungag <ship name>
Turn your ship's sub-space radio on or off, thus controlling whether
or not you'll receive any messages from other ships or your bases; or
suppress or restore messages originating from specific ships.
RA ON Turn sub-space radio ON.
RA OFF Turn sub-space radio OFF.
RA G L Suppress all radio messages sent by the Lexington.
RA U W Allow radio messages sent by the Wolf to be received.
REPAIR device damage
Syntax: REpair [<units>]
Repair damaged ship devices. If a ship suffers a critical hit to a
device, REPAIR can be used to restore the device to full (or partial)
working order. A REPAIR removes the specified units of damage from
each damaged device, in addition to the normal repair rate of 30 units
per turn. If the ship is DOCKED, the pause time for the specified
REPAIR is reduced by half of that needed while in flight. If the
repair size is not specified, REPAIR defaults to a 4 second repair (50
units + 50 more if docked). REPAIR does NOT reduce the SHIP damage.
RE 100 Remove up to 100 units of device damage.
RE Same as "RE 100" if DOCKED, else same as "RE 50".
Full range SCAN
Syntax: SCan [Up|Down|Right|Left|Corner] [<range>|<vr><hr>] [W]
Display a selected portion of the nearby universe. If no range is
specified, SCAN defaults to a square scan range of ten sectors from
the present ship location. The keywords UP, DOWN, RIGHT, LEFT, and
CORNER modify this to include only the part of this original square
specified (relative to the ship). The maximum scan range is 10
sectors, and larger specified ranges are reduced to this value. If
individual vertical and horizontal ranges are specified, the scanning
field will be shaped accordingly. The WARNING keyword if added to the
end of a SCAN command string will flag the empty sectors within range
of an enemy base or planet with !'s instead of .'s. The SCAN symbols
and their meanings are:
E,F,I,L,N,S,T,V,Y Federation warships
B,C,D,G,H,J,M,P,W Empire warships
~~ Romulan warship
 Federation starbase
() Empire starbase
@ Neutral planet
+@ Federation planet
-@ Empire planet
. Empty sector
! Empty sector within range of enemy port (only when
using WARNING keyword)
SC Scan universe within a radius 10 sectors.
SC 10 Equivalent to "SC".
SC 13 Equivalent to "SC 10" or "SC".
SC 4 Scan universe within 4 sectors.
SC 4 4 Equivalent to "SC 4".
SC 2 8 Scan up to 5 rows and 17 columns, centered on the
present ship location.
SC U 4 7 Show only upper half of normal "SC 4 7" scan.
SC C -5 -5 Scan the region bounded by the present ship location
and the location (-5,-5) sectors away (puts ship in
upper right corner of the scan).
SC W Same as "SC", plus shows danger zones around enemy
bases and planets.
SET input and output parameters
Syntax: SEt <keyword> <value>
Keyword Value Description
------- ----- -----------
Name name Change name (shows in USERS).
Output Long Default. Use longest output format.
Medium Use medium output format.
Short Use short (cryptic) output format.
Scan Long Default. Use long format scans.
Short Use 1 character symbols instead of 2.
Prompt Normal Default. Use "COMMAND: " prompt.
Informative Use "> " for prompt. Precede the ">" with:
S if shields are down or < 10%.
E if ship energy < 1000 (yellow alert).
D if ship damage > 2000.
nL if life support is critically damaged (n stardates
Ttytype CRT, ADM-3a, ADM-2, SOROC, BEEHIVE, ACT-IV, ACT-V, VT05, VT06,
VT50, VT52, VT100
Tells DECWAR the TTY type so that it can do rubout, R
and U properly
OCdef Absolute Default. Display all coordinates in absolute format
Relative Display coordinates relative to your location
Both Display coordinates in both absolute and relative
Icdef Absolute Default. All input coordinates default to absolute.
Relative Input coordinates default to relative.
SE PR I Switch to informative prompt.
SE OU S Set output format to short.
SE N THOR Change your name in USERS to THOR.
Syntax: SHields Up|Down or SHields Transfer <energy>
Raise or lower ship shields, or transfer energy between ship and
shield energy reserves. Raising shields consumes 100 units of ship
energy, lowering them or transfering energy is "free". NOTE: Shield
condition is displayed as +n% for shields up, n% of full strength, or
-n%, for shields down, n% of full strength.
SH U Raise shields.
SH D Lower shields.
SH T 500 Transfer 500 units of energy TO shields
SH T -500 Transfer 500 units of energy FROM shields
Short Range SCAN
Syntax: SRscan [Up|Down|Right|Left|Corner] [<range>|<vr><hr>] [W]
Equivalent to SCAN, but with a default scan range of 7 sectors. For
complete information on sensor scans, see the help on SCAN.
Show ship STATUS
Show the current stardate, plus the status of any of the ship
attributes: ship condition, location, number of torps, ship energy,
ship damage, shield energy, and radio condition. Ship condition can
be green, yellow (low on energy), or red (in battle). Radio condition
is either on or off.
ST Give full status report.
ST T Report how many torpedos remain on board.
ST E D SH Report the ship energy, the ship damage, and the
shield condition (energy, %, up/down).
ST L Report the current ship location.
Give SUMMARY on number of ships, bases, and planets
Syntax: SUmmary [<keywords>]
Give any of the information available from the LIST command, but give
only a summary by default. See the help on LIST for more information
and the complete set of keywords that can be used to modify SUMMARY
SUM Tell how many ships, bases, and planets are in the
game (broken down into friendly, enemy, and neutral
SUM EN Tell how many enemies are in the game (number of
Romulans, enemy ships, enemy bases, and enemy
List information on TARGETS
Syntax: TArgets [<keywords>]
Primarily for locating targets during battle, when a SCAN would be too
time consuming. List location and shield percent of any enemy ship,
base, or planet in range; name of any enemy ship in game (including
the Romulan); or location and number of builds of any known enemy
planet. TARGETS is equivalent to a LIST command with a default range
of 10 sectors and a default side of enemy.
TA List all targets within 10 sectors.
TA 10 Equivalent to "TA".
TA 5 List all targets within 5 sectors.
TELL another ship something using the sub-space radio
Syntax: TEll All|FEderation|HUman|EMpire|Klingon|ENemy|FRiendly|
Send messages to one or several of the players currently in the game,
with no range limitation. Players who have turned their radios off,
or have a critically damaged sub-space radio can not be sent to. The
TELL command can not be repeated using the ESCAPE key (no junk mail!).
TE V;Hello! Send "Hello!" to the Vulcan.
TE KL;DROP DEAD Send "DROP DEAD" to all Klingons.
TE V,E;HELP ME Send "HELP ME" to the Vulcan and Excalibur.
List various TIMEs
List time since game started; time since your ship entered the game;
run time for your job so far this game; total run time since login;
and current time of day.
Fire photon TORPEDO burst
TOrpedo [Absolute|Relative|Computed] n <v1><h1> [<v2><h2> [<v3><h3>]]
A photon torpedo is aimed along a path in physical space, thus any
object lying along its path will intercept the torpedo. One, two, or
three torpedoes may be fired with one command, and the torpedoes may
be individually targeted, or fired at a common location. The minimum
range of a torpedo is 8 sectors, but some will travel 10 sectors
before self-destructing. Torpedoes may be deflected from the desired
track by a number of different factors, including your ship's shield
strength, computer and torpedo tube damage, and torpedo misfires. A
torpedo misfire also aborts the remainder of the burst, and sometimes
damages the torpedo tubes as well. Torpedoes can cause stars to go
nova, and can also destroy planets (if no enemy installations remain
intact). "Accidental" hits on friendly ships, bases, or planets are
automatically neutralized. A torpedo burst uses no ship energy.
Firing torpedoes (or getting hit by one) puts you on red alert.
TO 1 12 24 Fire one torpedo at sector 12-24.
TO 3 12 24 Fire three torpedoes at sector 12-24.
TO 3 6 7 8 7 9 12 Fire one torpedo at sector 6-7, one at 8-7, and one
TO 3 12 24 13 39 Fire one torpedo at sector 12-24, and two at sector
TO A 3 12 24 Equivalent to "TO 3 12 24".
TO R 2 2 -5 Fire two torpedoes at sector 22-25, assuming your
location is 20-30.
TO C 3 BUZZARD Fire three torpedoes at the Buzzard.
TO C 1 E Fire one torpedo at the Excalibur.
Syntax: TRactor <ship name> or TRactor Off
Tow another ship of the same team. The two ships must be located in
adjacent sectors and both ships must have their shields lowered. Once
such a beam is applied, either ship can pull the other behind it using
warp or impulse engines. Energy consumption for the towing ship is 3
times the normal rate for movement with the shields down. The ship
being towed will end the move trailing the lead ship. If either ship
raises deflector shields, the tractor beam is automatically cut. The
tractor beam will also be broken if either ship is hit by a torpedo or
damaged by a nova.
TR Break any existing tractor beam.
TR OFF Equivalent to "TR".
TR B Apply tractor beam to the Buzzard.
TYPE game, input, and output settings
Syntax: TYpe OPtion|OUtput
Type the current game OPTION and OUTPUT settings.
The OPTION settings are:
- The version number and date of implementation,
- Whether there are Romulans in the game,
- and whether there are Black Holes in the game.
The OUTPUT settings are:
- SHORT, MEDIUM, or LONG output,
- NORMAL or INFORMATIVE command prompt,
- SHORT or LONG sensor scans,
- ABSOLUTE or RELATIVE default for coordinate input,
- ABSOLUTE, RELATIVE, or BOTH for coordinate output,
- and the current TTYTYPE.
TY OP List the option settings.
TY OU List the output settings.
List all ships currently in the game. Include ship name, captain (may
be changed by SET NAME), TTY speed, PPN, TTY number, and job number.
If the output format is set to medium or short, omit the TTY and job
numbers. If the output format is set to short, omit the TTY speed and
PPN (include only the ship name and captain).