Swords of Chaos
SoC is a multi-player adventure game. The goal (aside from socializing
and having fun) is to hack and slash your way to power. You do this by
exploring the realm, amassing treasure and killing monsters.
Swords of Chaos is a Muinet product, written by Mark Peterson.
Swords of Chaos is Copyright (C) 1997 by Mark Peterson, All Rights Reserved.
Whenever the game is waiting for you to do something, you will see a ">"
prompt. At the ">" prompt you enter commands and parameters that tell the
game what you want to do. All commands can be abbreviated to the point
of "uniqueness" (i.e. you only have to type enough letters of a command
to differentiate it from all the other commands). While playing the game
you can get a list of all the different commands by typing 'help commands'.
To get help for an individual command type 'help '.
Note: "." (a single period) will repeat your last command line and
will cancel whatever you've typed on a line.
As a multi-player game, SoC allows you to interact with other people
also playing the game. No one likes reading help files, so it's often more
convenient to ask questions of the experienced players. These are the
commands for communicating with others:
Where - Displays a list of everyone currently signed on to Chaos.
Send - Sends a line of text to everyone signed on to Chaos,
i.e. send hi everyone!
Say - Sends a line of text to everyone in your current location/room,
i.e. Joe just arrived!
say hi Joe!
Whisper - Sends a private message to the specified player,
i.e. whisper joe Hi Joe!
Yell - Sends a line of text to everyone in your current location/room
and to everyone in the rooms that adjoin your current location,
i.e. Joe just left!
yell hey joe, come back!
Your character consists of a bunch of statistics and information that
determine what you can and cannot do and how well you can do it. The
command to display your character is "stats". Your stats consist of several
Name and Title
Your character is identified by it's unique name. Your character also
has a "title", so generally a player is referred as "Name the Title"
(the "the" is always inserted). You can change your name and/or title
from the main SoC menu.
You must select a character class for yourself. The options are warrior,
sorcerer, barbarian, thief, duelist, cleric, and mystic. Your class
represents your characters background and inclination. Classes do not
generally place restrictions on what you can and cannot do. For example,
all classes may attempt to rob players and monsters, but thieves are just
better at it than non-thieves. Similarly, all classes may learn and cast
spells, but sorcerers, clerics and mystics are just better at it than the
other classes. In addition to different special abilities and bonuses, the
class you choose also determines which of your starting stats are
increased when your character is first created.
You must select a race for yourself. The options are elf, dwarf, human,
ogre, and halfling. Your race determines in which of your five basic
attributes you specialize. You start with +10 in the stat your race
specializes in and only need to earn half the relative experience when
questing for increases in that attribute. Also, each race has a special
ability that will aid you along the way.
For a full explaination of the different starting bonuses and special
abilities for the various classes, read the "character classes" help
These are strength, dexterity, constitution, psychic ability, and
intelligence. Your attributes affect many different situations in the
game (see below), for a more detailed explaination see 'help stats'.
Your strength determines your carrying capacity. The higher your strength,
the more items (by weight) and gold you can carry.
Your str, dex and int determine your base combat bonus. Your combat bonus
is added to your rolls in combat. The higher your combat bonus, the more
often you will score a "hit" and the more damage you will do when you do
hit. For each 10 points of str, dex and int you receive a +1 to your
combat bonus. I.E. if your str was 10, your dex was 20 and your int was
15 your base combat bonus would be +4.
Your combined str and con determine your body points. So, whenever you
increase your str or con, your body points also increase. Body points
indicate how many hits you can withstand in combat. Each time a monster
hits you you temporarily lose body points. If your body points ever go
below 0 you are killed (more on dying later).
Your combined str and con determine your fatigue points. Fatigue points
represent your "stamina". Virtually every physical action in the game
(i.e. fighting, moving, etc) has an associated fatigue point cost. As
you perform actions, fatigue points are temporarily subtracted from your
fatigue point total. If you try to perform an action and you don't have
enough fatigue points left, then you will have to rest up (wait for your
fatigue points to regenerate) before you can finally perform the action.
Some activities use up more fatigue than others. For example, just moving
between rooms uses less fatigue than combat. Being attacked also costs
fatigue. For example, if a monster swings at you but does no damage, you
still lose fatigue points. Similarly, if a monster attempts to "bash" you
(knock you down) and fails, you still get tired in the process. Face it,
evading blows can be as tiring as inflicting them.
You naturally regenerate 1 fatigue point every 2 seconds. Also, you can
naturally regenerate body points (again 1 point every 2 seconds). However,
you cannot regenerate body points until all your fatigue points have
been regenerated (i.e. you won't start to heal until you've had a chance to
rest). There are magic spells that let you regenerate fatigue and body
points much faster (more on spells later).
Your psychic ability determines how many magic points you have. When
casting spells, each individual spell has a different magic point cost.
The number of points is temporarily subtracted from your magic point total
whenever you cast a spell. If you do not have enough magic points left to
cast the desired spell, then you must wait for your magic points to
regenerate until you do have enough points. You regenerate 1 magic point
per second (there are no spells that increase that regeneration rate).
Your level is derived from your five basic attributes. It is a close
approximation of what level a monster would have to be to have stats
like yours. Basically it is a general estimation of your power and
is used by the game in a number of different ways.
Weapon Class Bonuses
All weapons in the game fall in one of the four weapon classes: edged
(swords, axes, etc), blunt (maces, clubs, etc), pole (spears, etc), and
"unarmed" (gauntlets, etc). Your character has a skill level for each of
the different weapon classes. When you use a weapon of a given type,
your bonus for that particular weapon class is added to your combat
bonus. If you're not wielding any weapons at all, then your "unarmed"
bonus is added to your combat bonus. Unarmed combat is just that,
fighting without weapons. There are, however, unarmed combat "aids"
that enhance your unarmed fighting abilities.
Your armor class is a measure of how hard you are to hit. The higher the
number, the more difficult you are to hit. So, when you put on armor or
hold up a shield, your armor class will increase. The better the armor
or shield, the higher your armor class will go.
Your defensive ability is your natural "armor class", representing your
ability to avoid being hit. It is added on to your armor class as
determined by any armor and/or shield you are currently using.
Your shield skill represents how affectively you can fight while holding a
shield. It is added to your armor class (in addition to the armor class
of any armor you might be wearing and the armor class of the shield
itself). Initially your shield skill is negative, so until you get better
at it, holding a shield can be something of a liability. While your shield
skill is negative it is subtracted from both your armor class AND your
combat bonus (however, once it becomes non-negative it is not then added
to your combat bonus).
Two Weapon Skill
Your two weapon skill represents how affectively you can fight while
wielding two weapons. If you are wielding two weapons, your two weapon
skill is added to your combat bonus. Like the shield skill, your two-handed
skill is initially a negative number, so until you increase it you will
find that you are a tad clumsy when wielding two weapons.
Your thief ability represents how adept your are at thieving. The higher
the number, the greater your chance of successfully stealing from a
monster or another player. The command to rob another player or a monster
Your bank balance is how much gold you have deposited into your bank
account. You get gold by killing monsters and taking their gold, or
by taking their treasure and selling it. Gold is used to buy things
or to pay for training (more on all that later).
Your character can carry up to 20 different items. To display the items
you are carrying, type "inventory". More on items later.
Wherever your character is currently located in the game is it's current
"room". For example, all characters start the game in "Town Square". A
room consists of a a variety of different pieces of information. To look
at the room you are in, the command is "look".
Up to six lines of text which, in general terms, describe what you see
and where you are.
These are the ways you can leave your current room and go to a different
room. Exits consist of the directions north, south, east, west, up, down
and out. To leave your current room via one of the exits, just type the
direction you want to go (movement commands can all be abbreviated to
one letter, i.e. 'n', 'e', 's', 'w', 'u', 'd' and 'o'). Some rooms have
hidden exits. To see if your room has a hidden exit use the 'search'
All rooms have a cover factor. The cover factor for a room determines
whether or not you are successful when trying to "hide" in a room (more
on hiding later). There are four levels of cover; no cover, sparse
cover, moderate cover and heavy cover. The heavier cover, the easier it
will be to find a hiding place.
Some rooms have a "special" exit, i.e. one that does not correspond to a
specific direction. For example "You see the palace" means that this room
has a special exit which leads to the palace. To go to a special exit the
command is "go", i.e. "go palace". Some special exits are doors or gates
which may or may not be locked. To open a locked door you can either use
a key on it or attempt to smash it open with brute force (using the "smash"
command). Some special exits are magical in nature and can only be opened
with magic keys (normal keys and smashing will not work). Some doors can
only be unlocked by chanting a special password or phrase. Some exits
require that you belong to a specific guild, or that you carry a specific
item before you can pass through them.
Some rooms have permanant traps in them. There are a variety of traps,
all self-explainatory when you trip them. The protection spell will protect
you from the affects of traps. Also, the higher your intelligence, the
better your odds of avoiding a trap. If your intelligence is greater than
100 you are immune to traps.
If there are items laying on the ground in a room they will be displayed.
To just look at the items in the room (and nothing else), type "items".
If there are monsters in the room with you they will displayed. To just
look at the monsters in the room type "monsters". If a room has
"encounters" (i.e. monsters show up there), you will always encounter
the same few monsters there. So, if there are certain monsters that you
find profitable to kill, remember where you encountered them. Encounter
rates vary from room to room. Monsters will show up more frequently in some
rooms than others, and in some rooms monsters just don't show up at all.
If there are any other players in the room with you they will be displayed.
The "monsters" command also displays other players if any are around.
Some rooms are designated "safe haven". This means that monsters cannot
go there. Also, players are not permitted to fight each other there. There
are a number of safe havens throughout the game (Town Square, for example,
is a safe haven).
Town Square is a common meeting place for players, it also is the room
where you start the game.
In the bank you can withdraw, transfer or deposit gold. To get to
the bank from town square go east and then north. Generally speaking it's
not necessary to ever withdraw cash from your bank account. Whenever you
purchase something, the gold is taken directly from your bank account.
Also, if you want to give gold to another player you can just transfer
it to his or her bank account rather than withdrawing the cash and
giving that to them.
New players start out with a small amount of "free" gold in their bank
accounts. To prevent you from simply giving this money away, you must first
increase your starting intelligence by 1 point before you can withdraw cash
or transfer funds to another player. This should not hinder the honest
player, since as mentioned above, all normal expenditures are extracted
directly from your bank account. Once you've spent the time increasing your
intelligence, you can do whatever you like (whenever you like) with your
In the mercantile you can buy and sell things. Any gold paid to you for
selling an item is deposited directly into your bank account. Similarly,
when you purchase an item the gold is debited from your bank account. To
get the the mercantile from town square go east and then south.
The academy is where you train for enhancements to your character (more on
this later). To get to the academy from town square, go east, east and
then go academy.
Player-Vs-Player Combat Arena
PVP combat arenas (one is located in the Tavern in the base game) are
places where players can fight each other without risk of losing anything
other than wagered gold. If you are slain in a PVP combat arena, the gold
you bet on your survival is transferred to the victor. Beyond that, none of
the normal penalties for getting killed apply. When you enter a PVP arena,
you will be prompted for the amount of gold you wish to bet on yourself.
The minimum bet is 1 gold (unless you have no money whatsoever). Look at a
player to see what they have bet - their bet is displayed in parens () next
to their name.
In some rooms you are considered to be in water over your heard (i.e.
drowning). While you stay in such rooms you lose 2 points of fatigue and
2 body points every second (until you leave or until you die). If you cast
levitation you can safely float about the water and avoid such damage.
Fire rooms are similar to water rooms in that you lose 2 fatigue points and
2 body points every second while in them. There is no way to avoid this
damage (other than by leaving or dying).
Magic Sponge Rooms
Some rooms have magic dampening fields that prevent you from using magic.
In some rooms you can use magic items, but you cannot cast spells. In
really bad rooms you cannot use any kind of magic (cast or item), and
any timed spells you casted prior to entering the room will instantly
There are some rooms to which you are not permitted to teleport. The only
way to get into them is old fashioned walking. This includes the teleport,
safe return, bring and seek spells.
Apart from a map of the streets of Elfhelm, there are no other "official"
maps for Swords of Chaos. But, they are a good idea nonetheless. Wandering
around lost is both frustrating and dangerous. Before you officially embark
on improving your character you may wish to spend some time exploring
around and making maps.
Generally speaking, there are two ways to get items. You can either
purchase them from the mercantile (a very limited selection), or you
can get them from monsters or other players (by either killing or robbing
them). Of course, there's always whining and pleading, but that'll usually
earn you a mace to the face.
All items have a couple of common characteristics; they all have a name,
i.e. "a flaming Battleaxe". Note that one word in an item's name is
capitalized. This is the word you would use to reference a particular
item, i.e. "get battleaxe". It is possible to relabel an item by changing
it's "adjective" (in this case, "flaming"). Use the "label" command to
do this (this is handy for putting your name on an item you leave in
a guild or put a label on a container). Also, all items have weight. So
depending on your strength and how much something weighs, you may or may
not be able to pick it up. To get more information on an item, pick it up
("get" command), and look at it ("look" command).
Weapons fall into four different categories (blunt, pole, edged and unarmed
combat aid). There are also two subclasses of weapon; two-handed and
"light". A two-handed weapon is generally a large, heavy weapon that
requires you to hold it with both hands. It is possible to wield a
two-handed weapon in one hand if your strength is high enough. Light
weapons are, for one reason or another, lighter than weapons of a similar
ilk (perhaps due to some kind of enchantment or special property).
Looking at a weapon will give you a display something like this:
It is a flaming Battleaxe - two-handed edged weapon (20 +5)
Equivalent weight in gold pieces = 1000
The "20" indicates the base damage factor of the weapon. In this instance,
hitting a monster with this weapon would do a base of 1-20 (random)
points of damage. So, the higher the damage factor the more damage you
can inflict with the weapon. The +5 is an enchantment bonus on the weapon
and would be added to your combat bonus. So, the higher the enchantment
the better your odds of hitting and the more damage you would do.
All weapons have a finite number of "uses". Each time you swing and connect
with a target, a use is decremented from the weapon. When the number of
uses falls below 10 you will be informed that the weapon is "cracking".
Once the number of uses reaches 0, the weapon breaks and is removed from
The command to wield a weapon is "use". To stop using a weapon you can
either just "drop" it or "use" it again. Drop will put it on the ground
(probably not desireable). Re-using will return the weapon to it's
There are two types of armor; metallic and non-metallic. Metallic armor
could be steel chainmail or a bronze breastplate, etc. Non-metallic
armor could be hardened leather armor or perhaps some magically
enhanced element (bone, for example). There are several reasons for
this differentiation. First, non-metallic armor will weigh less than
metallic armor of similar armor class. Second, it is not possible to
either cast spells or rob someone while wearing metallic armor. The
amount of metal present in metallic armor interferes with the wizard's
ability to tap into the "cosmic energy pool". Similarly, metallic armor
is too noisy and bulky for thieves who require stealth and freedom of
Looking at some armor will give you a display similar to this:
It is some leather Armor (5 +2) - protection for the body!
Equivalent weight in gold pieces = 40
In this case, "5" is the base armor class for the armor. The +2 indicates
that the armor is enchanted and is added to the base armor class for a
total armor class of 7. That is, were you to wear this armor your armor
class would increase by 7. Like weapons, armor has a finite number of
uses. Whenever an enemy hits you in combat, a use is decremented from your
armor. Armor with an enchantment bonus will also tend to last longer, as
the enchantment will occasionally prevent a use from being decremented.
The higher the enchantment bonus, the longer the armor will last. To put on
armor you "use" it. To take it off you "use" it again.
Not only does wearing armor make you harder to be hit, it also reduces
the amount of damage done to you when you are hit. The higher the armor
class, the more damage it prevents you from taking. Metallic armor prevents
more damage than non-metallic armor (i.e. if you had some metallic armor
that was armor class 20, it would prevent more damage than AC 20
Shields work exactly like armor, i.e. they add to your armor class. There
are two subclasses of shield; strapped, and light. Strapped shields are
strapped to your arm, thus preventing you from accidentally dropping
them during combat. Light shields, like light weapons, are comprised of
special material that make them lighter than other shields of similar
armor class. To hold up a shield you "use" it. To stop using it you
"use" it again.
Magic Devices, Magic Rings and Scrolls
Chaos has many different magic spells to help you in the game; there
are spells that heal you when you're wounded, invigorate you when
you're tired, enchant your weapons and armor, make you tougher and
faster in combat, inflict damage and woe upon your foes, and so on (see
the spells documentation section for a detailed explaination of all the
spells). There are two ways to invoke a spell; learning the spell from a
scroll and casting it, or using a magic device.
To "learn" a spell, you must slay the scroll-carrying monster in individual
combat. That is to say, you must find a monster that carries a scroll
and then kill it with no help from anyone else (no one besides yourself
can have attacked the monster). If you accomplish that feat, you immediatly
learn the spell written upon the monster's scroll. It becomes a permanant
part of your spell repetoire and can never be taken away from you. To list
the spells you have learned the command is "spells". Once you have learned
a spell you can cast it any time you want using the "cast" command, with
just a couple of exceptions. For each spell, depending on how powerful
it is, there is a minimum psychic ability requirement. Although you may
know the proper words and gestures to invoke the spell, it is possible
that your psychic ability is not high enough to be able to cast it. If
this is the case, you will be informed when you try casting it how high
your psychic ability needs to be to cast the spell. Also, each spell
costs a certain number of magic points to cast. Each time you cast a
spell, magic points are temporarily subtracted from your total magic
points. If you don't have enough magic points to cast the spell you
want, then you have to wait for your magic points to recharge.
Magic devices can be used by players to cast spells that they haven't
yet learned. To use a magic device the command is "use". Devices have
a finite number of uses, decremented each time the item used. Once the
number of uses reaches 0 the item vanishes in a puff of smoke.
Magic rings are a little different in the way they work. Rather than
having a number of "uses", they have internal timers. Putting on a
ring (via the "use" command) invokes the affects of the spell on the
ring. Once the time expires on a ring, the ring vanishes and it's
affect is cancelled. For example, wearing a ring of invisibility will
cause you to be invisible until you either take the ring off or the
timer on the ring runs out. To remove a ring, just "use" it again.
Amulets are special devices that block offensive spells cast upon you. You
don't need to "use" them per se- merely having them in your inventory is
enough. While you are carrying an amulet, it will absorb all offensive
spells that are cast upon you. Amulets have a finite number of magic
points they can absorb before they become overloaded and vanish in the
proverbial puff of smoke.
Psychic focii are special magic devices that, depending on your class,
serve a couple of different purposes.
For all classes, they help you cast spells that you otherwise don't have
the psychic ability to cast. If you are holding a focus and you cast a
spell that you can't cast because your psy is too low, the focus may help
you cast the spell. If you are a mystic, cleric or sorcerer the focus will
always allow you to cast any spell, regardless of how low your psy may be.
For non-mages (warrior, duelist, barbarian, thief), the focus will double
your psy (for the purposes of determining whether you can cast the spell).
If your doubled psy is sufficient, you will be able to cast the spell.
A use is subtracted from the focus each time it aides you in casting a
spell that you otherwise wouldn't be able to cast.
If you belong to one of the mage classes (mystic, cleric and sorcerer) and
you are using a psychic focus and cast a spell, the power of the spell is
greatly increased. Also, in the case of offensive spells your target's
chances of dodging the spell are greatly reduced. To hold a focus, use the
"use" command. Each time you cast a spell, a use is automatically
decremented from the focus. Once the number of uses reaches 0, the focus
Psychic focii can also be used to enhance the affects of magic devices.
If you are holding a focus when you use a magic device, the spell will
be more powerful (and if offensive, your aiming odds will increase). This
applies to all classes.
You may occasionally find cash when you kill or rob a monster. You carry
this cash around with you until such time as you go to the bank and
Trinkets are essentially useless items that you can sell at the mercantile
for big bucks.
Certain trinkets are "puzzle" items. A puzzle item is a part of a set
of up to 20 other pieces that can be assembled into a totally new item.
To see if you've acquired all of the pieces of a puzzle set, use the
"use" command on one of them.
Containers are items that can hold other items (i.e. bags, sacks, chests,
etc). They allow you to carry more items than your normal 20 item limit.
Containers have a finite number of uses, a use being subtracted whenever
you put an item in. Once the number of uses reaches 0 the container will
break, spilling it's contents out on the floor. Magic chests are special
containers who's contents become weightless. I.E. you can put 50 suits of
armor into a magic chest and it still won't weigh any more than it weighs
when it's empty. To put an item into a container use either the "put" or
the "drop" command. To take an item out of a container use the "get"
command. To see what's in a container just look at it. To dump out the
entire contents of a container use the "dump" command.
Any given container can only hold up to 100 items before it becomes full.
Keys are special items used to open doors (locked special exits). A key
may be just a normal skeleton key, or magical. Magical keys will open any
lock. Normal keys will only open non-enchanted locks. Keys have a finite
number of uses and once the number of uses reaches 0 the key breaks.
Talismans are special items that help prevent you from suffering the
penalties associated with being killed (more on this later). Also,
warriors and duelists have a special class ability that allows them to use
talismans to add uses to (i.e. repair) weapons, shields and armor. The
number of uses added is equal to the level of the monster from which the
Transporters are magic devices that are basically one-shot teleportation
devices to a preset room.
Semi-permanant items are items that appear in a room and stay there until
they are picked up. These items are refreshed once per day (or possibly
more often, depending on how your sysop has configured the game).
Monsters are the entities that you encounter in the game that aren't other
players. They may be human, humanoid, animal, awesome, loners, or just
plain weird. It is by killng and/or robbing monsters that you earn the
experience points necessary to advance your character. There are a variety
of factors that determine a monster's behavior (looking at a monster will
reveal these factors to you):
Monsters are all either evil or lawful. Lawful monsters will ignore you
unless you attack them. Evil monsters will attack you the moment they
become aware of your presence.
Monsters have the same physical attributes as players (strength, dexterity,
body points, fatigue points, etc). How high these stats are is determined
by their "level". This single factor is used to determine all of a
monster's stats, so determining a monster's level will go a long way
towards telling you whether you can take it on or not.
Certain monsters are magical in nature. This means two things; first,
they can cast spells (which spells they can cast is determined by their
level). Also, magical monsters can only be hurt by spells and enchanted
weapons - non-enchanted weapons will merely bounce off their shimmering
Some monsters are immune to all forms of magic, i.e. they cannot be hurt
by spells or enchanted weapons. The only way to kill them is to attack
them with non-enchanted weapons.
Certain belligerant monsters may try to prevent you from picking items
up from the ground. They may also prevent you from leaving the room, or
pursue you into the next room if you try to escape from them. Sometimes
having monsters pursue is a good idea. If the monster you want to kill
is encountered in a very dangerous room, you can try attacking it and
getting it to pursue you into a (hopefully) less dangerous room.
Most monsters carry treasure that you can take from them by either
killing or robbing them. The same monster will carry the same few
items, so if there are items that you particularly like, remember the
monster they came from. Whether or not a given monster is carrying any
treasure is randomly determined, so not all monsters may carry treasure
all the time. Monsters (with the exception of animals) actually wield
the weapons and wear the armor that they carry, so better equipped
monsters are more dangerous than monsters without weapons or armor.
Some monsters are poisonous, i.e. you become poisoned when they hit you.
Poison is always fatal (and in a very short period of time). The only way
to get rid of poison is to cast a "purification" spell on yourself. If
you have been poisoned your prompt will appear with a red "P" next to it.
Some monsters, like players, will attempt to steal things from you. The
only thing that they can't steal from you is the armor off your back. If
a monster steals something from you, the only way to get it back is to
kill the monster or steal it back.
Certain horrible monsters have the ability to drain your life forces. When
they hit you, they actually absorb yor body points into their own body.
So, if a drainer hits you for 50 points, you go down 50 and they go up 50!
Certain monsters are "pests". They will not initate combat, but they
will be annoying by trying to steal from you and/or pick things up from
the ground. Once attacked, they will defend themselves.
Certain special monsters are "loners". They only drop treasure if you kill
them "solo" (i.e. without any help from anyone else).
Some hideous monsters have the ability to "morph" themselves. They can
change their level at will. If you attack what looks like a level 1
monster, it might suddenly turn into a level 100 monster!
Certain more petite and vulnerable monsters (i.e. fair maidens, etc) have
their own entourage of guards. Attacking such a monster will land you
in jail, minus your weapons.
You can talk to monsters using the "talk" command. Generally they don't
have much to say, with a couple of exceptions. If you talk to The Oracle
(a permanant monster) he will ask you for a spell you are interested in.
Then, for a price, he will tell you the name of a monster that carries
a magical device of that spell. Another permanant monster is The Huntress.
She is rumoured to live in a cave somewhere in the wilderness surrounding
Elfhelm. If you talk to her she will ask you to be her champion. If you
agree, she will set you upon a quest (or quests). If you complete her
quests she will reward you with a Talisman.
Note- the talismans the Huntress awards can be extremely valuable to
warriors and duelists. They can use them to repair weapons, shields and
armor. The number of uses added is equal to the level of the monster from
which the talisman came (i.e. the level of the Huntress).
As you become more powerful you will discover that monsters that used to
put up a fight when you attacked them now just flee the minute you try
to initiate hostilities. Like players, when monsters flee the tend to
drop stuff in their haste, so be sure to check the ground for items after
a monster flees from you.
Commands that refer to a special exit, monster, item or player require
that you reference them in your command input. For example:
put sword in chest
Special exits are referenced by their name. For example:
You see the palace
You see a bronze gate. It's locked!
use key on gate
Monsters are referenced by their name and their number (if there is
more than one of the same kind of monster in the room). For example:
You see an 2 aciddragons, 3 generals, and a scumbag.
talk acid 2
cast blast on general 3
(Note, 'hit acid' and 'hit acid 1' are the same thing. If you don't
specify a number, then it's assumed you mean the first one).
Items on the ground
Items laying on the ground can be referenced name, name and number, or
just number. For example:
You see a shortsword, a bag of stuff, and a shortsword.
get short (pick up the first shortsword)
get short 2 (pick up the second shortsword)
get 1 (pick up the first item on the ground, the shortsword)
toss 2 (throw away the second item on the ground, the bag)
Items in your inventory
Items in your inventory can be referenced by name, name and number, or
just number. For example:
Carrying 4 items:
1. a shortsword
2. a bag of stuff
3. a shortsword
4. some leather armor
drop short (drop the first shortsword)
sell short 2 (sell the second shortsword)
cast enchant on 3 (enchant the second shortsword)
drop 4 (drop the leather armor)
Items in a container
Items in a container can be referenced by name, name and number, or just
number. For example:
1. a shortsword
2. a bag of stuff
3. a shortsword
get short from bag (get the first shortsword from the bag)
toss short 2 from bag (remove the second shortsword and throw it away)
get 3 from bag (get the second shortsword from the bag)
Players are either referenced by their name, or in the case of the
communication commands (send, etc) also by their SoC "port number".
Any item name or monster name may be abbreviated to the point of
You see a shell, a shortsword, and a shoshoni.
You see a sheep and a shepherd.
'she' is not unique, whereas 'shel', 'shee' and 'shep' are. 'sho' is not
unique, whereas 'shor' and 'shos' are.
Hiding and Detection
Staying out of sight is a basic strategy in Chaos. If a monster doesn't
know you are in a room, it can't attack you, can't stop you from picking
things up from the floor, can't prevent you from leaving, and so on. So,
it is valuable to try to remain undetected. The simplest way to get out
of sight is to use the "hide" command. Whether or not you find a hiding
place is determined by your intelligence and the level of cover in the
room. If you fail to find a hiding place you have to wait a few seconds
before you can try to hide again. Once you have found a hiding place it
is assumed that you will stay there. An "H" next to your main prompt
indicates that you are hidden.
Monsters that enter a room after you've hidden will not know you are there
until you perform an action that alerts them to your presence. To see
whether or not a monster knows about you, just look at it. Virtually
any overt physical action (dropping something, picking something up,
performing an attack, leaving the room, etc) will cause all monsters
in the room to note your presence. If there are evil monsters in the room
they will then attack you.
Your first strike on a monster who doesn't know you are in the room
should usually be a good one. You have an enhanced chance to hit (+20)
and a greater chance of dealing double damage (it's a surprise attack!).
There are a couple of spells that relate to hiding and detection;
invisibility and stealth. While invisible, a player can enter a room
without having the monsters there detect him or her. Also, the player
can pick up items from the floor without having monsters interfere with
them. Finally, they can leave a room without having monsters try to
stop them or pursue them.
Under the affects of stealth, it is possible for a player to perform
an overt action and still not have monsters in the room become aware
of their presence. The odds of success are based on the monster's
intelligence vs. the player's dexterity, along with random chance. So,
a stealthy player can actually attack a monster from his hiding place
and not have the monster detect them! (This is an extremely powerful
ability, perhaps the most powerful ability in the game).
Chaos is played in "real time". That is to say, most actions require
a few seconds of real time to pass after you perform them before you
can perform another action (this is tracked by your "action timer"). Many
of the spells are timed as well, in that their affect lasts for a set
number of seconds before the spell expires and must be recast. The "timers"
command lists any timers currently running on your character (generally
There are five basic forms of attack, the commands for them are:
Hit is a basic attack, with no special bonuses or penalties applied. You
roll a random number to which your combat bonus is added. The result of
that is compared to your foe's armor class. If you "win" the roll, then
you have hit. If you hit, a roll is made for the base damage of the
weapon (or weapons) you are wielding and finally your combat bonus is
added to that roll. An additional roll is made to see if you scored
an excellent hit. If you make that roll, the damage you do is doubled.
The damage is subtracted from your foe's body points and if they have
gone below 0, your foe dies. Once killed, a monster is removed from
the room and any items it has fall to the floor. Regardless of whether
or not you hit, you and your opponant both lose fatigue from the attack.
Parry is a defensive attack. The damage you do by parrying is only half
of what you would normally do, however you are much harder to hit in
return. Parrying temporarily adds 10 to your armor class. Parrying
does not cost any fatigue points.
Greatblow is a "berserk" attack. The damage you do by greatblowing is
double what you normally do, however you leave yourself vulnerable to
counter-strike. Greatblowing temporarily subtracts 20 from your
armor class (down to a minimum of armor class 0). Greatblowing costs
more fatigue than hitting.
Bashing an opponant does not inflict damage, rather it (if successful)
renders an opponant temporarily unable to do anything (the target's
action timer is set and it can't perform any actions until it's
timer runs down to 0). Bashing can be used in a couple of ways. You
can alternate it with a damage-inflicting attack thus avoiding taking
damage. Or, two players can gang up on a monster- one player bashing
and the other hitting for damage.
Bashing has two levels of success. If partially successful, the target
is rendered vulnerable (it receives an armor class penalty) and it's
action timer is set. If totally sucessful, the target is considered
"knocked to the ground" and is totally helpless. It is rendered
vulnerable, it's action timer is set, and it can't otherwise flee
or evade blows.
Bashing costs more fatigue than greatblow.
The fifth form of attack is attack by magic. There are several offensive
spells, some of which inflict damage on the target and others which make
it harder for a monster to fight.
Once you enter into combat the computer will press the attack for you using
your most recent attack method. The fight will continue until either you
or your opponant dies. The computer is smart enough to downgrade your
attack method if you do not have enough fatigue to perform the most recent
type of attack. For example, say you greatblow a monster. The computer will
continue to greatblow the monster for you until you don't have enough
fatigue for another greatblow, then it will try to hit the monster, and
finally, if all else fails, it will simply parry (which costs no fatigue).
Once you regenerate enough fatigue for further greatblows, the computer
will revert back to greatblowing.
Whenever a player or a monster performs an attack they have a small chance
of goofing up. This could result in stumbling, tripping, falling down or
dropping a weapon or shield. The higher your dexterity, the lower the
likelihood of your messing up. When you are first learning to fight with
a shield or with two weapons, you also have an increased chance of
dropping stuff. Once your shield skill level and two weapon skill levels
become non-negative you will find that you fumble less often when fighting
using a shield or two weapons.
As implied by the very name of the game, "Swords of Chaos" is a violent
and nigh lawless game. The default configuration of the game places little
restriction on PVP combat. In fact, PVP conflict is actually encouraged by
the existance of the guilds. However, there are a number of
sysop-configureable features that can place limitations on intra-player
This option determines the allowed discrepency between the level of
attacker and attackee. For example, if PVPLEVEL is set to 10, you can only
attack players whose level is within 10 levels of your own.
The outlaw system is probably the most affective way of limiting PVP
conflict. Under the outlaw system, players must specifically become
an outlaw (from the main SoC menu) before they are permitted to
attack other players. And they will only be allowed to attack other
Your sysop may also configure the game to make use of the "evil point"
system. There are three settings related to evil points:
The number of evil points applied to your character when you murder
The number of evil points you are forgiven each day you play.
The number of evil points you must accrue to be considered an "evil"
character. Once you reach this level of evilness, all monsters in the
game (including normally lawful monsters) will attack you on sight. Thus
making playing the game considerably more difficult and discouraging
people from committing enough murders to reach this state.
The most valuable command in the game is "flee". When you flee you
throw down any weapons or shield you are currently wielding and run
to a randomly determined exit. Fleeing is a guaranteed escape, so remember
to use it when it looks like you're about to die - you'll be glad you did.
As previously discussed, players can invoke spells by either learning
them and using the "cast" command or casting them using magic devices.
There are many different spells with many different uses.
A note on offensive spells; whenever an offensive spell is cast on a
target, that target has the opportunity to "dodge" the spell. The chance
of evading an offensive spell is based on the psychic ability of the
caster and the dexterity of the target, along with random chance. There
are three possible outcomes of an attempted dodge; completely dodged means
nothing happens to the target, the spell missed. Partially dodged means
that the target almost dodged the spell. The target only suffers a
weakened version of the offensive spell (usually 1/2 power). Finally,
if the target completely fails to dodge they must suffer the total
power of the spell.
There are a number of "friendly" spells in the game that for one reason
or other the caster may wish to cancel. This is accomplished using the
The character classes geared towards magic (cleric, mystic and sorcerer)
have a special ability available to them. This is the ability to enter into
a trance (using the 'trance' command). While in a trance, their psychic
ability points are available to other players in the same room. So, if
player A has a psychic ability stat of 100 and player B has a psychic
ability stat of 100, then when player A enters into a trance, player B
will have an affective psychic ability of 200.
Becoming More Powerful
Becoming a more powerful player certainly involves acquiring better
weapons, armor, shields, magic items, learning spells, and amassing vast
quantities of gold. But that's just a small part of the big picture, a
means to an end. The real guts of becomming a powerful player is raising
your character's stats. This is accomplished by "training" and "questing".
Training involves going to the Elfhelm Academy, selecting the stat (or
stats) you want to raise, paying the training fee and then questing for
experience points. You have 13 different stats you can increase in this
4. Psychic Ability
6. Thief Bonus
7. Defensive Ability
8. Blunt Weapon Bonus
9. Unarmed Combat Bonus
10. Edged Weapon Bonus
11. Pole Weapon Bonus
12. Shield Skill
13. Two Weapon Skill
Your first step is to get to the Academy. Once inside, activate the Academy
menu by typing "menu". List your current experience quests. Each quest has
an associated training cost (in gold pieces) and a number of experience
points you must earn to complete the quest. These numbers will increase as
your stats increase, so initially you should be able to advance rapidly.
Very high stats will cost you a lot more gold and take a lot more time
to complete. To select a quest and train for it, select the appropriate
option from the Academy Menu. The "experience" command will display which
quests you are currently on and how much more experience you need to
Once you've select a quest or quests and trained for them, you are then
ready to go out and earn the experience points. Except for the thief
bonus, this involves killing monsters (you earn experience towards a
thief bonus quest by robbing monsters).
Experience points awarded for a kill vary depending on the level of the
monster killed as compared to your character's own stats. The higher
a monster's level, the more experience is awarded for killing it.
Experience you earn is downgraded if the monsters you kill are
significantly less powerful than you (and upgraded if the monsters are
significantly more powerful than you). A good rule of thumb is to start
out with level 1 monsters (the weakest monsters in the game). Eventually
the experience you earn by killing them will decrease until finally
they just run away from you whenever you attack them. Then you can move
up to level 2 monsters, and then level 3 monsters, and so on (remember,
look at a monster to see it's level). Of course, that's just a general
guideline - more skilled and daring players (or players working
together), may wish to attempt to fight "over their heads".
As you earn experience, the experience counters for your quests decrement.
Once you've earned all the required experience for a quest, the quest is
over. The stat you were questing to increase increments. If you want to
increase that stat yet again you must return to the academy and start the
cycle again; pay the training and earn the experience.
Whether or not you earn experience from a kill is different for each
quest and depends on a variety of factors.
Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, and Intelligence
Any kill will earn you experience for these quests. Experience may vary
up or down based on how your particular stat compares to the monster's
stat. I.E. if you are questing for intelligence, you earn more experience
for killing monsters that have higher intelligence than you and less
experience for monsters that have lower intelligence than you.
Psychic ability quest experience is awarded when you kill a monster in
a combat where you hit it with at least one offensive spell. I.E. if
you kill a monster using only weapons you won't earn experience towards
a psychic ability quest. However, if you use weapons and also nail it
with a lightning bolt or a langour spell (both offensive spells), you
will receive experience towards a psychic ability quest. Note; just
casting an offensive spell at a monster is not enough, you must actually
hit it with the spell. If the monster dodges the spell it does not count
as a successful offensive spell. Spells may be cast either via the cast
command (spells you have learned) or from magic devices. In terms of a
psychic ability quest, it doesn't matter how you get the spell off.
As previously mentioned, experience towards a thief quest is awarded for
successfully stealing items from a monster.
Any kill will earn you experience towards a defensive ability quest.
The experience you earn is lowered if you kill monsters that have a
lower armor class than your total armor class.
Blunt, Pole and Edged Weapon Bonus
Any kill will earn you experience towards a weapon bonus so long as you
are using a weapon of the appropriate type. I.E. to earn experience
towards an edged weapon bonus quest you must be using an edged weapon. It
is possible to use two different weapon types and earn experience towards
both weapon class bonus quests. Experience you earn is downgraded if
your combat bonus exceeds a monster's armor class (if it was easy to
hit, you earn less experience).
Unarmed Combat Bonus
Any kill will earn you experience towards an unarmed combat bonus quest
so long as you either aren't wielding any weapons at all or the weapons
you wield are unarmed combat aids and not pole, blunt or edged weapons.
Any kill will earn you experience towards a shield skill quest so long as
you are fighting while holding a shield.
Two Weapon Skill
Any kill will earn you experience towards a two weapon skill so long as you
are wielding two weapons.
Banking Generic Experience
If you make kills and you haven't trained for anything (i.e. you're not
currently questing) you can "bank" a finite amount of "generic" experience
points. Generic experience is applied the next time you train for either
a strength, dexterity, constituion or intelligence quest. So, even if you
haven't trained for anything it's still possible to earn at least some
experience points for kills you make. However, it's not a good idea to
spend a lot of time fighting when you haven't trained for anything. When
earning generic experience, you are only awarded half the experience you'd
earn if you had actually trained for a quest.
The yell command serves a couple of purposes. First, it can be used to send
a line of text to people in the rooms that adjoin your current room. Also
(and more importantly) it can be used to increase the encounter rate of
a room. Yelling and raising a ruckus just naturally attracts monsters,
so if that's what you want, yell away. Beware though, if you yell in
the presence of monsters they will tend to get aggravated and attack you!
So, the lesson here is to yell when you want monsters to come because
there aren't any there already.
Unlike games similar to Chaos, hanging up (disconnecting from the system)
when you're in a tough spot will not save your bacon. If you hang up while
other players are in a room with you, any monsters you leave behind
that were attacking you will immediatly switch over to attacking your
compatriots. This kind of behavior will quickly earn you a very bad
reputation, something that is usually pretty hard to overcome. If you hang
up while you are alone in a room (there are no other players present), a
snapshot of the room is taken and the next time you sign on you will be
right back where you left off. Any monsters and/or items that were in the
room when you hung up will still be there, patiently awaiting your return.
So, if things get rough, either tough it out or flee - disconnecting won't
Bounties and Other Events
Periodically you will see various messages announcing bounties and other
random occurances. These occurances provide you with special opportunities.
There is always a bounty on. To see what monster is currently under bounty
use the "bounty" command. When killing monsters under bounty you are
awarded double experience, as well as a cash payment. There is also a
chance that a bounty monster will carry enhanced items - items that are
more powerful and valuable that what is normally carried by that monster.
Bounties are always on evil monsters. They are randomly determined and last
for a finite period of time. Each time the bounty changes a "permanant
roving" version of the bounty monster is placed into the game. Watch out,
it may show up anywhere!
During an invasion, a random horde of monsters starts streaming into the
realm and quickly starts spreading. The level of the invaders is based on
the levels of everyone playing at the moment. These monsters carry items
with enhanced power and value. To end the invasion, you and your allies
must simply hunt down and kill them all. The player who kills the last
remaining invader is awarded with as many talismans as he or she can carry.
The 'bounty' command displays whether or not there is an invasion occuring,
and if so, how many invaders remain to be killed. The invasion will
collapse on it's own after an hour or two if no one manages to kill them
There are various other random occurances that affect the state of monsters
in the game which are also displayed with the "bounty" command.
The Wail of The Banshee
While The Banshee wails, monsters move slower. I.E. A monster's action timer
is set higher than normal when they perform any kind of action.
During an eclipse monsters have fewer body points than they normally would.
While a golden halo rings the sun you earn greater than normal experience
Dying is a terrible experience for any adventurer. Here are a couple of
things to keep in mind about dying:
When you die you lose any items or cash you were carrying and are
teleported via "the coffin express" back to Town Square. You may attempt
to retrieve the items you lost by returning to the room where you were
Dying also causes you to lose 1 point from each of your physical
attributes (str, dex, con, int and psy). If your constitution goes below 2,
your character is permanantly dead and you must start over with a new one.
Note, some of your other statistics are computed based on your 5 physical
attributes- body points, fatigue and magic points. So, when you die and
lose 1 point each from your physical attributes, your BP's, fatigue and
MP's will also go down.
Talismans can be used to prevent this stat loss. For each talisman you
carry you will save one randomly determined stat from being decremented.
The downside is that you will not be able to retrieve your items if killed
while holding talismans (the gods take your inventory rather than your
stats). Talismans can be found on a wide variety of different monsters,
though they are somewhat rare. Talismans can also be had by completing
quests for The Huntress (if you ever find her, she'll tell you what you
have to do).
Finally, when you die any experience you had earned towards an experience
quest is lost.