Adventurer's Survival Handbook
Written & Designed by Kathi B. Tremblay
Edited & Illustrated by Thomas J. Clement
Datasoft is a registered Trademark of IntelliCreations, Inc.
Alternate Reality is a registered trademark of Paradise Programming, Inc.
Datasoft presens this special edition of the Alternate Reality
Adventurer's Handbook for Commodore 64/128, Apple II Series,
and Atari Home Computer users!
The purpose of The City game is to become familiar with the world of
Alternate Reality, build up your Stats, and develop a truly awesome
Character that can handle itself in any sort of situation. This exercise
will prepare you for the more demanding adventures you'll have in The
- Always save you Character on the same Character Disk you used
to create it. Save backup Characters on the backup Character Disk.
Switching disks in mid-stream will eventually cause you to lose your
Cautions for Commodore Users ONLY
- Whenever you're prompted to insert the Character Disk, always
remove any disk from the drive and turn the drive off and on, onve,
beofre inserting the Character Disk (SX-64 owners, press the drive reset
button). Just to be safe, also do this after removing the Character Disk
and before reinserting the game disk.
- When you're backing up your Character Disk, turn the drive off and
on every time you change disks during the backup procedure (be sure
there's no disk in the drive when you turn it off!).
- Write-protect your game disks (never write-protect your Character
Disk, of course).
- Then a Character dies in The City, the only way you have of
"ressurecting" it is by using your backup Character Disk, so make
- Use the backup program provided on your game disk or any fastcopy
program to make Character Disk backups.
- Then we mention hours and minutes in this Handbook, we're refering
to AR time: 1 Alternate Reality Hour = 4 Earth Minutes.
STARTING A NEW CHARACTER
- Caution: Players who begin the game aggresively won't get
very far. Remember, you enter The City with fairly low Stats and are
in no position to attack everything in sight (at least, not without being
snuffed). Use caution and common sense during Encounters.
- Getting started isn't easy. It's a good idea, if you're lucky enough to
enter the portal with high Stats, to stop and save that Character
immediately. Make a couple of backups, then reload and play. That
way, if your "novice" Character gets rubbed out, you've still got those
great Stats on another disk!
- All Stats are set on a scale from 0 to 255 (except Experience and
- The Stats the computer sets at the beginning of the game include
those seen on the screen plus several other Stats you don't see: Moral
Alignment, Physical Speed, Treasure-Finding, and Noticeability.
- Strength, Intelligence, Wisdom, Skill, Stamina, Charm, and Physical
Speed increase randomly and may move up one point each time you go
up a level (they also might not budge, so don't get your hopes up!).
- Then you first go through the Portal, your Moral Alignment is Good.
- As in real life, it's much easier to reduce you Moral Alignment than it
is to improve it.
- Every evil act reduces you Alignment, until is reaches the ultimate
low (the big 0). The lower you let your Alignment drop, the harder it is
to return to the straight and narrow.
- To develop a Good Character or reform an Evil one, remember:
- Never be the first to attack, unless you're absolutely
sure the creature you've Encountered is evil;
- Never Trick or Charm anything but evil life forms.
- Physical Speed is set when you go through the Portal.
- If your Speed is too slow, you're plodding prey for belligerent beasts.
- The Blue Wizards enhance your Speed when you first visit their Guild.
At that time, these accommodating, sky-clad mystics will also tell you
exactly how fast you are.
- You can be slowed down considerably from being tired, hungry, or
thirsty. Potions of Fleetness and Slowness
also affect this Stat.
- Treasure-Finding is the Stat that defines how likely you are to get
Treasure after Encounters.
- When you first enter the game, your Treasure-Finding Stat is 0.
This doesn't mean you won't find goodies; it just means the odds
of finding them are slim.
- Treasure-Finding Potions increase your Treasure-Finding Stat. As
you find Treasure, the value of this Stat decreases (you use it up).
- Noticeability is set when you go through the Portal and is increased
or decreased by Potions.
- This Stat controls the frequency of Encounters; the higher the
Noticeability, the more Encounters you Character faces.
- Your Inventory is the list of objects you carry. When you find or buy
items, they become part of your Inventory.
- Checking your Inventory can leave you vulnerable to suprise
Encounters. To avid this, cycle through this list while in an Inn, Tavern,
- Some items are permanently listed in your Inventory wether you
own them or not (Food Packets, Water Flasks, etc.). The quantity you
have is listed next to the name of the item.
- Rings are listed in your Inventory, but you won't find them in The
City. They're listed so you'll have a place to put them when you find
them in The Dungeon and other scenarios.
- The easiest way to travel is by using the Keyboard rather than the
Joystick, especially for turning right or left. Note: In the Atari version,
you must use the Joystick for some things, such as leaving Banks.
- When mapping The City, look for vertical lines on the walls. The
distance between these lines corresponds to one square on the 64 x 64
map grid provided in the Guidebook that came with your game.
- Buy a Compass in any Shop. You'll need one since it's easy to get
turned around, especially at night or in a maze.
- Pause the game while planning your next move or when drawing on
your map (this keeps nasties from sneaking up on you!).
- There's a more complete map in the center of this Handbook for
those of you who have given up even figuring out the whole thing on your
own. However, we haven't eliminated all the mapping challenges: every
wall and door in The City is included, but none of the locations are
identified - that's up to you!
- Begin counting co-ordinates at the bottom, left-hand corner of the grid
and count the first square as 1N, 1E.
- The following is a list of names of The City's establishments.
SHOPS TAVERNS BANKS
Adventurer's Outfitters Black Devil First City
Best Bargain Store Club Babylon Gram's Gold Exchange
Betelgeuse Sales Dancing Nymph Granite
Da Place! (2 locations) Flaming Dragon
Exclusive Outfitters Happy Hunter Rest Stop
General Store Last Stop HEALERS
Honest Trader Lost Tears
Merchant's Grotto Lusty Lloyd's Alpha Omega Healers
Pauline's Emporium Misty Mountain One Way Soothers
Rocky's Emporium Mom's Bar
Smiley's Screaming Siren Bar
Special Imports Tail of the Dog MISCELLANEOUS
Sunset Market The Club
Warriors Supplies The Tavern Acrinimiril's Gate
Dungeon Entrance (2)
INNS SMITHIES Floating Gate
House of Ill Repute
Green Boar Best Armourers Jack's Fitness Academy
Lazy Griffin Knight's Armourers Maximum Casino
Midnight Occum's Weaponsmith Palace
Royal Resort Sharp Weaponsmiths
- You can't join Guilds or cast Spells in The City, but you'll get the
chance to do both in The Dungeon.
- Below is a list of co-ordinates to all 12 Guilds. The Stat each Guild
increases on your first visit is given in parentheses.
Order (INT) 50N, 58E Green Wizards (STA) 43N, 12E
Light Wizards (WIS) 5N, 3E Thieves (SKL) 35N, 44E
Physicians (Hit Points) 15N, 6E Chaos (CHA) 60N, 51E
Law (WIS) 50N, 62E Red Wizards (STR) 15N, 48E
Blue Wizards (Speed) 48N, 19E Assassins (Hiding) 3N, 56E
Star Wizards (Hit Points) 12N, 28E Dark Wizards (CHA) 22N, 34E
Directions to the Star Wizard's Guild
- A compass is mandatory before beginning the maze that leads to the
Star Wizard's Guild! Begin at 10N, 21E (the end of the long hallway
with doors down both sides - don't go past the end of the hall!).
- Face East. Go through 9 doors.
- Face North. Go through 4 doors.
- Face West. Go through 1 door.
- Face North. Go through 2 doors.
- Face West. Go through 2 doors.
(Smiley's Shop is West of you).
- Face South. Go through 1 door.
- Face West. Go through 1 door.
(Smiley's is now North of you).
- Face South. Go through 1 door.
- Face West. Go through 2 doors.
- Face North. Go through 2 doors.
- Face West. Go through 1 door.
- Face South. Go through 4 doors.
- Face East. Go through 5 doors (the fourth one is a secret door) and
you'll be inside the Star Wizard's Guild.
TAVERNS, BANKS, SHOPS, & SMITHIES
- If you're still hungry of thirsty after eating and drinking, you obviously
didn't eat or drink enough! Water is cheap and two or three drinks
usually do the trick for thirst. Food is more expensive; if you haven't
much cash, try a bowl or two of Chili.
- Dragon meat and Pemmican add a Food Packet to your collection as
well as satisfying immideate hunger.
- Sit in a tavern for a few minutes (without ordering anything) in
order to consume Food Packets and Water Flasks.
- Buying several "rounds for the house" earns you friends in that
Tavern (but has no effect on your overall Moral Alignment). If you're
hungry, thirsty, and broke, head for the Tavern where you've previously
made friends. Your pals there will take pity and help you. Andy Food
Packets or Water Flasks you're carrying will be replaced by the free
ones, so make sure you're really destitute before going into Taverns
where you're well known!
- If you're poor and hungry and haven't yet made any Tavern friends,
find The Tavern at 63N, 21E. The water is free and Packets and
Flasks don't come any cheaper!
- Never stay in any Tavern past closing time. Onve
you do this, your Character can never again enter
any Taverns (this goes for Banks, also).
- Banks offer varying prices for Jewels and Gems. Sometimes one
Bank will tell you something's worthless, while another Banks will give you
a good price.
- Sometimes you'll enter a Bank and get the message "Account
Failure," wether you have an account at that Bank or not. When this
happens, you won't be able to leave the Bank until is has finished all its
calculations for the failure (this could take awhile, so be patient!).
- After Year Two (AR time), Banks have a much higher failure rate.
The first time in a Bank in Year Two may tie you up for an hour (Earth
time). Go in the morning so, if the calculations take that long, you won't
be in the Bank at closing time (and risk being thrown out forever).
- If you consistently offer a Shopkeeper less money than he wants for
his goods (or even if you just offer the bare minimum), he'll eventually
start calling you names (ouch!) and may even refuse to deal with you
(worse ouch!). Of course, this only applies to the particular Shop where
you've caused "trouble" and doesn't affect your Moral Alignment.
- Blacksmiths are temperamental guys. Example: You go in, see a
Smith's wares, and leave without buyin anything. The next time you
show up, Mr. Smith will likely cuss you out (this doesn't affect your
- Establishing a Good Character is important to many of you, so you
need a fool-proof way of knowing which life forms are evil and,
therefor, fair game (attack 'em!). Each creature has its own musical
accompaniment and this should clue you in to its alignment; however,
neutral life forms are difficult to discern by this melodic method.
- The 18 creatures listed below are the only ones that are evil (as if
their names didn't tip you off already!):
Assasin Orc Giant Rat Black Slime Spectre Imp
Gnoll Troll Wolf Ghost Zombie Ghoul
Goblin Nightstalker Brown Mold Wraith Gremlin Skeleton
- As you can see, the list has no Thieves, Cutthroats, etc. (those are
neutral-aligned life forms). Hobbits, Dwarf, and Giants are good
creatures (many of you have asked about them). Even Dragons are not
- Remember, it's OK to fight good and neutral life forms, but only if
they attack first (don't ever Trick or Charm them though)!
Your chances for Encounters are greatest at night and when it's
- The Arch-Mage and his minions (Acolytes, Apprentices, Novices, and
Wizards) are lawful life forms. Killing them is bad news (unless they
- Ghosts are nasty creatures. They strike with a Bone-Chilling Touch
that decreases your Strength (not a time-limited effect, by the way)!
- The best way to eliminate a Ghost is with a magical Flamesword.
Tricking or Charming may work, also. But a low-level Character would
be better off to steer clear of these ectoplasmic entities!
- Tricking and Charming are evil acts. However, using these
techniques against evil life forms won't hurt your Moral Alignment (it's
okay to fight fire with fire!).
- Tricking is a method of distracting your enemy so you can kill him
when he's not looking.
- Charming is an evil act because it involves pretending to be a life
form's friend while stabbing it in the back!
- If your Charm Stat is low, you'll be attack often (don't look friendly!).
- Never Disengage when you meet a Thief or Mugger; he'll steal your
- Be careful in Encounters with Assassins. One critical blow can be
fatal, no matter how strong you are or how many Hit Points you have!
DISEASES & HEALERS
- You can be infected with nasty Diseases by Brown Mold, Giant
Rats, Black Slime, and other nauseating creatures. Find a Healing
Potion or go to a Healer.
- Diseases have incubation periods; you can be walking down the
street, minding your own business, and suddenly become ill from a
scratch or bite received two or three days earlier.
- If you find your Hit Points dropping off 10 at a time, with no indication
of Poison or Diseases, you've been Slimed by the Black Slime sometime
in the past and are now dying. Find a Healer fast!
- "Restore Clarity" (an option at the Healer) is to cure Delusions.
"Restore Sight" will be used in a later installment.
- You've probably noticed that the Healers get more expensive each
time you use them. Their prices will go back down in 24 hours, if you
can stay away from Healers that long.
WEAPONS AND ARMOUR
- Once you acquire a Weapon, press U to use it as
your Primary Weapon (don't wait for an Encounter;
you want to be prepared before you're attacked!).
- Any magical Weapon is better than its mundane
counterpart. But a magical Flamesword is the
single most powerful Weapon in The City.
- The best Armour depends on the foe you're
combatting and the Weapon he's wielding.
- Shields do not act as Armour; they increase your
ability to Parry an attack.
- The only way to find out which Weapons and
Armour work best in an Encounter is by trial and error.
There are so many variables in the game that a
comprehersive list of cause and effect is impossible.
- Weapons and Armour can break or wear out. If
you discover that a formerly formidable implement is
no longer doing its job, replace it with one that works.
- There are two items that may be Cursed: Weapons and Armour.
- If your Wisdom is high enough, you may be able to discover if
Weapons or Armour are Cursed before you pick them up; examine them
- While you're wielding a Cursed Weapon or wearing Cursed Armour,
you'll be severly handicapped in battle.
- You can't drop a Cursed Weapon or piece of Armour. The only way
to get rid of the Cursed object is to find a Guild and pay to have the
- There are 44 different Potions in The City. Gremlins are the most
likely creatures to carry Potions.
- You can become Poisoned, Drunk, Deluded, etc., on just the first Sip
of a Potion. But the only way to get a Potion's full effect is to Quaff it.
- Some Potions are time-limited. They show up under your "Active
Magic" menu after you've limbibed them and their effects won't usually
last more than a few hours.
- Stat-changing Potions (Treasure-Finding, Intelligence, Fleetness,
Slowness, etc.) cause actual modifications to your Stats.
- The contents of a Potion sack are only determined
when the sack is opened. This provides some interesting
possibilities. Example: Your Character is saved on
two disks, Character Disk 1 and Backup Disk 2.
You can alternate play with these two disks
by saving the Character to Disk 1 when
you have three or more Potions, then backing
it up on Disk 2. The Potions will be different
each time you load your Character.
- Below is a list of Potions and what they do.
- Water, Fruit Juice, Mineral Water, and Milk may quench
thirst, but they have no other effects.
- Salt Water and Vinegar bring on thirst.
- Wine, Spirits, and Potions of Inebriation cause Drunkenness.
To sober up, see a Healer.
- Potions of Delusion cause you to see odd things happening
to your Stats. Get rid of Delusions by seeing a Healer.
- Poison causes initial Hit Point damage, then continues to
affect your Stats until you die. Get rid of Poison by
seeing a Healer or drinking a Potion of Curing Poison.
- Acid's effects don't last (like Poison), but Quaffing Acid
could kill you if your Hit Points are low.
- Potions of Cleansing heal Diseases.
- Potions of Healing Wounds do just what they say they do!
How completely your wounds are healed depends on the
strength of the Potion.
- Potions of Weakness, Slowness, Dumbness, and Ugliness
reduce your Strength, Speed, Intelligence, and Charm by
- Potions of Strength, Fleetness, Intelligence, and Charisma
increase your Strength, Speed, Intelligence, and Charm by
- Protection+1 and Protection+2 act as temporary Armour.
- Invulnerability Earth, Air, Water, Fire, Power, Cleric, Mental,
Sharp, and Blunt add temporary protection from certain
types of Weapons and Magic (sorry, no list -- this is another
spot for trial and error). This doesn't mean that you can't be hurt
by these elements; it simply gives you a better chance of
- Treasure-Finding increases your "invisible" Treasure-Finding
- Noticeability makes other life forms pay more attention to
you and, therefore, increases you chances of having
Encounters. Unnoticeability has the opposite effect. The
only way to counteract one of these kinds of Potions is to
Quaff one of the other kind.
- Invisibilty makes you invisible to any life forms except
magical and elemental types (Wizards, Ghosts, Imps, etc.).
Become visible again by standing out in the rain, undressed
(if that isn't becoming "visible", what is?).
- When you find a Potion, Examine it, then Taste it, and then Sip it.
The results help you decide whether or not to proceed.
- Potions are unstable and can "Poof!" at any time.
- To use a Potion you've saved for later, press U (you can't do this
during an Encounter).
- Below, all Potions are categorized by color, taste, and safety level
(* is SAFE; % idicates CAUTION; & means UNSAFE; "Inv." means
AMBER PLAIN * Curing Poison SOUR % Spirits
BLACK ACIDIC * Inv. Fire ALKALINE * Inv. Water
BITTER % Delusion DRY * Inv. Power
PLAIN * Inv. Sharp; * Inv. Mental; * Fleetness
SALTY * Inv. Air SOUR & Strong Poison; * Inv. Earth
SWEET * Inv. Blunt; * Inv. Cleric
CLEAR ACIDIC & Acid; * Cleansing BITTER * Unnoticeability
DRY * Mineral Water; * Invisibility
PLAIN * Water SALTY * Salt Water
GREEN SOUR * Healing Minor Wounds SWEET & Ugliness
ORANGE PLAIN % Inebriation SOUR * Protection +2
SWEET & Dumbness; * Protection +1
RED ACIDIC % Vinegar BITTER * Strength DRY % Wine
SWEET & Deady Poision; * Fruit Juice; * Treasure Finding
SILVER BITTER & Weak Poison; * Intelligence
PLAIN * Healing Major Wounds SWEET * Charisma
WHITE ALKALINE * Poison; * Milk BITTER & Slowness
SALTY * Healing All Wounds
YELLOW BITTER & Noticeability DRY % Weakness
PLAIN * Healing Wounds
- If you have any comments, questions, or problems, we
want to hear from you. It's easiest for us to serve
you if you write a letter. Please include your
name, address, computer type, and telephone number.
- If you write regarding a problem, be sure
to specify which computer you have
and give us as many details as possible
about your equipment and the trouble you're having.
- Send all correspondence to:
Datasoft - Alternate Reality
19809 Nordhoff Place
Chatsworth, CA 91311
Coming Soon... The Dungeon
- The Dungeon, the second installment in the Alternate Reality series, has four levels
to explore, each more perilous than the last. Each level you descend brings you closer to
solving the enigma of Alternate Reality. Discovering an important piece of this puzzle is
the major quest in The Dungeon.
- Naturally, you'll be able to take your City-developed Character into The Dungeon,
with all the Stats, Weapons, and wealth you've managed to accumulate (subject to
approval by The Dungeon customs office, of course). Or, if you prefer, you can start a
brand-new Character in The Dungeon.
- In The Dungeon, you'll be able to join Guilds, cast Spells, and even discover what your
Moral Alignemt is and how to improve it!
- Many of you wonder who or what Xebec was, how his (or its) demise came about, and
why a City was named after him (or it). This is an important clue to the whole Alternate
Reality series, so you must find the answer yourself. Hint: Look in a good dictionary
for a major clue (or a bad dictionary for no clue). You'll learn more about this mystery in The
- The Dungeon has many puzzles and quests for you to pursue before
achieveing your final goal. And, of course, solving the major puzzle (Clue:
Arcinimiril's Gate plays an important part in
The Dungeon) doesn't keep you
from going back and doing more
exploring and questioning.