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Where ever you see letters in bold and bracketed (for example: [LMB]), please press that key. Note that [LMB] and [RMB] are left and right mouse buttons respectively.
mouse_button_left_small.png = Left mouse button
mouse_button_right_small.png = Right mouse button
mouse_button_middle_small_001.png = Middle mouse button

Tutorial 1: First Arrival

After your first flight in your own ship, you arrived at a small Oceanic Planet by the name of Atlantis. Setting down with a sigh of relief, your first thought was to go in search of some rest and recreation, and then you’d see what the universe had to offer!

After loading Vega Strike (which may take several minutes the first time as Vega Strike generates the universe), the first screen to appear in front of you is the Hangar for the Oceanic Planet Atlantis. Notice in the centre view is your ship. Located around your ship are various access points to the remainder of the base. Use your mouse and scroll around your screen. At certain locations, you will notice hotspots fade in with the location title. This hotspot informs you of an access point, and what location on the base it will lead you to. Alternatively, click the mouse_button_right_small.png [RMB] , which takes you immediately to each point in sequence.

The Concourse

Locate the Concourse hotspot, and while highlighted click your mouse_button_left_small.png [LMB]. This activates the location, and you will enter the Concourse interactive screen. The Concourse is the central hub from which you can usually access all other locations.

The Bar

I don’t know about anyone else, but I’m thirsty – for a drink and some information.

Locate and enter 'the Bar' since we’re after a bit of R&R. Here at the bar, you can always chat with the bartender to get the latest information, game play hints and gossip. Highlight the bartender, and click the mouse_button_left_small.png . His conversation will appear at the top of screen. Repeated mouse_button_left_small.png clicking will trigger various conversations.

Occasionally, fixers will appear in the foreground of the screen, usually seated at a table of some sort. Fixers make available various missions, equipment or knowledge for playing Vega Strike. If there is a fixers here, highlight the fixer and click the mouse_button_left_small.png . The fixers will discuss whatever it is that concerns them, and should they offer you a choice, a decision menu will appear. For now, select [No] on the screen with the mouse_button_left_small.png . Locate the bar exit point, and return to the Concourse.

Mission Computer

Well, I’ve had a drink, so what’s a pilot do for fun around here?

From the Concourse, locate and enter the Mission Computer using the same process used to enter the Bar. You will notice across the top of the screen three buttons, button_missions_small.png, button_news_small.png and button_info_small.png. The button_missions_small.png button accesses the Mission Screen and is the default screen to appear when you access a Mission Computer. The button_news_small.png button accesses the News Screen, and the button_info_small.png button accesses the Information Screen. mouse_button_left_small.png the button_missions_small.png button.

We are now in the Mission Screen. From here, you can review what basic missions are available. While fixers offer more dangerous, more interesting (and more lucrative) missions, they are often few and far between. The missions here are more standard in nature (but not necessarily less dangerous!). mouse_button_left_small.png click on one of the green categories. The category expands to show the available missions of that type. Highlight one and click the mouse_button_left_small.png . Notice that the details of the mission appear in the right hand screen. If you wanted to accept the mission, you would mouse_button_left_small.png button_accept_small.png at the bottom of the screen. We’re not quite ready for missions, however, so we’ll leave the Missions Screen and look at the others.

Highlight the button_news_small.png button and click the mouse_button_left_small.png . This takes you to the News Screen. Since we have only just started the game, there has been no news. Later, accessing this screen will let you see the latest news happening all around the known universe.

Highlight the button_info_small.png button and click the mouse_button_left_small.png . This takes you to the Player Information Screen. Two more buttons are displayed: button_player_info_small.png and button_ship_stats_small.png. button_player_info_small.png displays your current relationships with the various factions of Vega Strike, and classifies any ships you have destroyed. button_ship_stats_small.png displays information pertaining to the ship you are flying – it is currently displaying information on the Llama. Click the button_done_small.png button and return to the Concourse.

Cargo Computer

If I want to get anywhere in this universe, it’s going to take money, and lots of it!

The simplest way to make money is to trade cargo. Buy where it’s low priced, and sell high. To do this, you need to access the Cargo Computer in a Trade Center. Follow the hotspots to the Trade Center and access the Cargo Computer. Notice at the top of the screen, the type of base you are on (Atlantis is an Oceanic Planet). Underneath, you may note that you have 13,500 credits to spend, and 500 cargo spaces to fill. Your aim here is to obtain as much low priced cargo as you can afford and that your cargo space can take. The types of cargoes available are classified by category with many having subcategories.

An Oceanic Planet is typically a rural type of planet with vast expanses of water, big on producing natural products. As such, highlight the Natural Products category with the pointer and click your mouse_button_left_small.png . You will see a drop down of subcategories: Food, Liquor, Natural Resources and/or Plants. Don’t be worried if one or more don’t appear, not all places produce the same goods all of the time.

Lets look at what Food is produced at Atlantis. The Food subcategory opens out to show various types of cargo, colored white. This means that we have both the room in our cargo bay to fit the cargo, and the credits to buy them. If we didn’t, they would be red in color, and we wouldn’t be able to buy them. Highlight the first cargo under Food. Notice that three buttons appear in the centre of the screen, button_buy_small.png, button_buy10_small.png and button_buy1_small.png. These buttons let you buy (respectively) all the cargo available, ten (10) of the cargo, or one (1) of the cargo. Press button_buy_small.png. Notice how the cargo disappears from the left, and appears in the right screen? Similarly, your credits and cargo space have reduced. You have now bought the cargo. If you wanted to sell the cargo, you would highlight it in the right screen, and click the button_sell_small.png button that appears.

We want cargo to trade, though, so stay in the left screen. Repeat the above sequence to purchase as much cargo under Food as you can. You may have credits and room in the cargo bay to spare after buying all the Food. If so, move on to the next subcategory and purchase what you can from there.

When you cannot buy more Natural Products (due to lack of credits, lack of cargo room or no more cargo available), click on the button_save_load_small2.png button. This takes you to the In Game Menu. From here you can exit the game, save your game or reload a previous save. Click in the box next to button_quit_game_small.png and enter your pilot’s name. mouse_button_left_small.png button_save_small_001.png and confirm to save your game. Notice that the name now appears in the box to the left. If anything happens later, we can always reload by entering this screen, highlighting the pilot name and clicking on button_load_small.png.

mouse_button_left_small.png -> button_done_small.png, and exit back to the Concourse.


Fireworks! Lots and lots of fireworks!

Our last point of call before leaving is the Shipyards. If you want to repair, upgrade or change your ship, this is the place to do it. Clicking on the Upgrade Ship hotspot lets you access the Upgrades Computer. This computer is operated in a similar manner to the Cargo Computer. Feel free to have a look at the available upgrades at Atlantis. Since you used your credits to buy your cargo, you probably can’t afford anything here. After a cargo run or two, you will hopefully have enough credits available to be able to afford something from here. For now, just note that the right screen shows the upgrades currently on your ship. If you get into trouble, at least you have something to fight back with!

Similarly, access the Shipyards themselves to review available ships for sale at Atlantis. The computer screen operation should now be quite familiar to you.

Tutorial 2: Your First Cargo Run

Well, that was a nice, peaceful interlude. Atlantis isn’t so bad, but I’m not the type of person who’s happy, covered in dirt and dust unless it’s from a spaceport. I’ve got wanderlust, and a whole universe to indulge it with!

Well, that’s the whole point isn’t it? You’re the type of person who sees life as a journey to the grave, not with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming ‘Wow! What a ride!’ If you want the stars, though, there are a couple of procedures to follow.

Return to the Hangar and locate your ship. Sometimes, the Hangar may be the Concourse, but either way, you want to find your ship and highlight the Launch hotspot. Click mouse_button_left_small.png on your ship to initiate the launch sequence.

After lift-off, your screen will be replaced with a view of your cockpit. Overlaying that will be a large box, your Nav Map. Use SHIFT_LEFT_EN.png + M_EN.png [M] to hide the Nav Map, since you are following this tutorial. Later, you will use the Nav Map to find your way around the known systems. Right now, though, you should be looking into space.

Press T_EN.png. This cycles your targeting system. SHIFT_LEFT_EN.png + T_EN.png cycles backwards, and the N_EN.png key can be used instead to cycle only destinations and not ships. Notice the right video display unit (VDU) changes its name and picture. On screen, a box may appear around some feature in the distance, and your detection array (the circles at the bottom of the screen), will show a ‘+’. This is your current target. This could be a destination, point of interest or hostile spacecraft. If your target is not within your field of view, an arrow will appear on an edge of the screen indicating the direction that your target occupies. Press T_EN.png repeatedly until the Mining Base Serenity is targeted. Using your mouse, joystick, or arrow keys CURSORS_GENERAL.png re-orient your ship by following the arrow until the gray box (representing the location of the base) is in the center of your screen. If the base is extremely far away, a crosshairs will be displayed instead of a targeting box.

Now that we’re pointed in the right direction, we want to get there. Press EQUAL_EN.png or KP_PLUS_EN_small.png on the keypad. You will see a couple of indicators above the detection array increase from zero (0). The left number is your current velocity, and the right number is your set velocity--the velocity that you have requested. Repeatedly pressing (or holding down) these keys will increase this number to a maximum point. Alternatively, BACKSLASH_EN.png will set your maximum velocity, to which your current velocity will eventually match. BACKSPACE_GENERAL~0.png will set your velocity back to zero.

Doesn’t feel like we’re going anywhere does it? That’s because space is vast! Under normal propulsion, you could take months to reach your destination. Ships in Vega Strike, however, are equipped with a SPEC drive that enables inter-planetary travel to be accomplished quickly.

Press A_EN.png. Notice the number below your current velocity increases from 1 to a large number. Similarly, the stars start streaking by. You have activated your SPEC drive. The number shown is your SPEC multiplier, which determines your velocity when multiplied with the velocity supplied by your conventional thrusters. While away from gravity wells, you can travel tremendously fast. This means that you must avoid obstacles like planets when using SPEC. Leave the drive on for now. If there is a planet between you and your destination, you must fly around the planet before proceeding. If your SPEC multiplier is low (in the hundereds) or falling, this means you are too close to the planet. Turn away from the planet and watch the SPEC multiplier climb. The further you are from a planet, the easier it will be to go around. Once you have a clear line of sight to your target, orient yourself again to head towards it.

You will notice shortly that you are now approaching Serenity, and the distance indicator in the right VDU is decreasing. Something else you will notice is that your shields disappear. That’s the disadvantage to using SPEC drives. It’s advised that you not engage your SPEC drive if there are enemies nearby.

If you find that it is difficult to control your ship while using SPEC, keep in mind that your ship's inertia makes changes in your velocity take some time. If you are pointed at the base but seem to be drifting away, look at the direction of the star streaks. This indicates your current vector. If this is too far off from where you want to travel, turn SPEC off for a bit while your flight computer adjusts to your requested velocity. Once the current velocity and set velocity numbers match, turn SPEC back on and you should be back on track.

If you are having trouble aiming accurately at your target from a distance you can use the ASAP (As Soon As Possible) feature. Press SHIFT_LEFT_EN.png + A_EN.png to activate ASAP, which will point your ship at your current target and engage full thrusters. You'll have to toggle ASAP off when you want to reduce your velocity. For this reason, it's a good idea to turn it off once you are correctly oriented so you can control your thrust manually.

As you approach Serenity, the SPEC indicator will reduce, and star streaking will disappear. This is because you are approaching another gravity well. Press A_EN.png to deactivate your SPEC drive when close to Serenity and approach under normal power. This gives your shields a chance to regenerate. You should also consider approaching your destination at less than full velocity to reduce any damage an accidental hit may do to your shields, or to your ship itself.

Maneuvering closer to Serenity, you will soon see it in your cockpit view. The closer you get, the bigger it gets. Once you are very close to the base, you can press BACKSPACE_GENERAL~0.png to cut thrust and use the TAB_GENERAL.png (afterburner key) to jet forward. Your ship will slow down automatically when you release the afterburner. Common courtesy when you want to dock to a base or land at a planet, is to hail it and request permission to land. Press 0_EN.png while the base is targeted. As you approach, three green or red boxes will appear around Serenity. These are the docking clamps. Carefully approach one of the green clamps. Some of them are inside a docking bay, which you can fly into if you wish. As you get close to a clamp, press D_EN.png to activate docking procedures. You may not be close enough to dock, so continue your approach and press D_EN.png until docking initiates.

Once docked, your cockpit view will be replaced with the Landing Pad at the Mining Base Serenity. Using the skills from Tutorial 1, find and access the Cargo Computer to sell your cargo. Don’t forget to save! Your cargo bay should be empty, and you should have more credits than you started with.

Congratulations! You have made your first cargo run!

Tutorial 3: Making Some More Money

Well, that wasn’t so hard was it? Used my head, bought some cargo, moved it where its needed and sold it, making some money out of the deal. I’m going to need more though. I’ve got lots of cargo space, and I don’t want pirates getting their hands on anything in MY hold!

Obviously, you’re going to need more money than what you made from your first cargo run. Repeat the process in Tutorial 2, buying cargo at low prices, traveling to another base and selling high. The key is to find out what cargoes will make the most money, depending on the base you’re buying from, and planning to sell to. This comes from experience, and landing at different bases. As a hint, we recommend buying Raw Materials such as Metals, and transporting them to back to Oceanic Atlantis.

Along the way, don’t forget to upgrade your ship! Adding more weapons, shields, armor, reactor power and various other upgrades will improve your ship over and above what you started with. It is a balancing act, spending credits on upgrades, as opposed to buying more cargo to make even more credits with, but eventually, someone is going to notice you, moving around the system and making money. Eventually, you will have to face a hostile opponent, and engage in combat.

Tutorial 4: Combat

It had to happen. Some nosy pirate, interfering Luddite or worse, an Aera force had to muscle in on my money making. What’s a pilot to do?

Vega Strike is a dangerous universe. Somewhere, sometime, a pilot has to be prepared to kill or be killed.

So, are you going to panic, or go in, guns blazing? Usually you realize you are about to have a battle because of a change in the music tempo. Another indicator is the target lock light flickering in your HUD. Either way, something’s got to give.

Once you are aware of hostile opponents, Press H_EN.png. This will target the closest one. You could use other targeting keys, but H_EN.png gives the quickest result, and the closest threat. Re-orient your ship until you facing your target. While doing this, switch your left video display unit (VDU) to guns and missiles using M_EN.png. Cycle through your gun selection using G_EN.png until you are happy with your gun load out. Similarly, use W_EN.png to select your missile load out.

Your personal preferences will eventually suggest an attack velocity, but for now, have your Llama set velocity at 800 - a reasonable speed, but not to fast. Your aiming reticule (the circle and cross in the centre of the HUD), should be directly over your opponent if you are head to head or on their tail. Otherwise, you want to aim slightly in front of their direction of travel, as your weaponry takes a small amount of time to travel between your respective positions (this is called leading your target). Once within range of your various weapons, trigger your fire control SPACE_HALF_GENERAL.png or mouse_button_left_small.png for guns; ENTER_EN.png or mouse_button_right_small.png for missiles; or your appropriate joystick buttons). Expect your opponent to try to evade your fire, so make sure you keep your weapons on your target.

Note the right VDU. This shows your opponent surrounded by its shields. As you fire upon your opponent, these shields will steadily reduce to nothing. Further hits on your opponent will then damage armor, and finally any critical ship components. The ship’s icon in the right VDU will redden as your opponent takes damage. Meanwhile, keep an eye on your shields in the bottom left of the HUD. Your opponent is trying to do the same to you. Combat, therefore, involves your attempting to reduce your opponent’s shields and armor, and evading your opponent’s returning fire, since they are trying to do the same to you.

Eventually, one ship (whether through luck, skill or superior hardware) will defeat and destroy the other. You want it to be you, since the other option doesn’t bear thinking about. A suitably large explosion will reward you as your opponent comes apart at the seams. At this point, press H_EN.png again to cycle to your next closest opponent. If you find one, follow the above process and destroy them, ship by ship. It is highly recommended that you destroy your first opponent before attacking another. This ensures the first opponent does not have time to regenerate their shields, which you have just spent time and energy removing. Remember, ALL of your opponents will be attacking you, so your ship is losing shields and armor, and time is of the essence.

If no opponents remain then congratulations! You have survived your first battle! Now, assess your damage. It may be that you now need to seek repairs to your ship. If so, dock at the closest habitable base or planet. Proceed to the Upgrades Screen and highlight each of your ship’s components. If damaged, a button_fix_small.png button will appear and the cost of repair will be noted in the bottom box. You may need to replace various ships’ components too. While you are here, replace any missiles used; you never know when you’ll need them next.

Tutorial 5: What Next?

This ends this series of tutorials. You should now have the basics on how to move about on a base, navigate the stars and defend yourself against danger. Make some more credits, upgrade or even change your ship. When you have enough credits to spare, go speak to a certain cargo hauler on Atlantis. Then, feel free to journey to the stars!

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