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SECTION 2 - DESIGNING A CYBERTANK

SECTION BRIEF - This section describes the OSI/CACD System 2 modules used to create and modify cybertank designs.

2.1 GENERAL INFORMATION

The two main areas of cybertank design are:
  1. Chassis
  2. Artificial Intelligence (AI)
The chassis includes the hardware and mechanical components of a cybertank. Chassis design is limited only by your budget. The chassis is created and modified using the Chassis Design Module (CDM).
Once a chassis is designed, the cybertank must be given the intelligence to function. A cybertank’s intelligence is limited only by your skill as a cybernetics engineer. A cybertank’s AI is created and modified using the Artificial Intelligence Module (Al Module).
OSI authorization is mandatory for all cybertank designs. Only those cybertanks that conform to OSI design specifications are cleared for combat simulations. Cybertank designs are authorized using the Cybertank Authorization Module (CAM).

2.2 DESIGN CONTROL MODULE

The Design Control Module (DCM) is the initial launching Point for the Chassis Design Module (CDM), Artificial.Intelligence Module (AI Module ), and Cybertank Authorization Module (CAM).
The DCM is entered by selecting DESIGN A CYBERTANK from the DESIGN menu in the External Control Module (ECM).
The DCM screen displays the designer’s name, clearance, and the current cybertank design, if one has previously been loaded (see Diagram 2.2.0).

Diagram 2.2.0 - DCM

To design a new cybertank or edit an existing one, select either NEW or LOAD, both located within the CYBERTANK menu. For a new cybertank, enter the name of the cybertank to be created and press SAVE. You will be transferred to the Chassis Design Module (see Section 2.3) to create your cybertank’s chassis. If you wish to edit an existing cybertank, select the LOAD option in the CYBERTANK menu. The selected cybertank is loaded and you are transferred to the AI Module (see Section 2.4).
The next time you enter the DCM, you are immediately transferred to the AI module, with the last modified cybertank design loaded. This default option is provided for your convenience, since you will probably edit your cybertank’s AI instead of its chassis. if you wish to edit the chassis, simply select the CHASSIS option in the CYBERTANK menu.
NOTE: Where are several instances in which the last cybertank design will not be loaded. It usually occurs when the design was not located in any of the available access slots. If this happens, the design must be loaded manually.
The DCM, CDM, and AI Module all share the same menus. Different menu items are enabled or disabled depending upon the module you are using. The menus are described in this section. Features unique to each module are discussed in the following sections.

2.2.1 The CYBERTANK Menu

Diagram 2.2.1 - CYBERTANK Menu

  • NEW
    Allows you to create a new cybertank design. If selected, the File Storage Panel (FSP - see Section 9.1) appears. Enter the name of your new cybertank design and select the SAVE button. You will be transferred to the CDM to design the new cybertank’s chassis (see Section 2.3).
     
  • LOAD
    Lets you retrieve a previously saved cybertank design. If selected, the File Retrieval Panel (FRP - see Section 9.2) appears. Select the cybertank design you wish to load and you are transferred to the AI Module (see Section 2.4).
     
  • SAVE
    Stores the current cybertank design to your ID Disc.
     
  • SAVE AS
    Allows you to save the current cybertank design using a new name. If selected, the FSP apppears. Enter a new name for your cybertank design. It should be noted that the new version of the design is totally separate from the original. The original remains unchanged. After saving, the new cybertank design file becomes the working design.
     
  • CHASSIS
    Transfers you to the Chassis Design Module (CDM) (see Section 2.3).
     
  • Al
    Transfers you to the Al Module (see Section 2.4).
     
  • AUTHORIZE
    Transfers you to the Cybertank Authorization Module (CAM) for approval of your cybertank design in conforming to OSI's specifications (see Section 2.6).
     
  • PRINT
    Prints the current cybertank design. The printout contains the cybertank’s chassis components and a complete listing of its artificial intelligence. Refer to the OSI/CACD System 2.Reference Card for more specific printing instructions.
     
  • DELETE
    Used for deleting cybertank designs from your ID Disc. If selected, the File Termination Panel (FTP - see Section 9.3) appears with the names of all the cybertank designs on your ID Disc displayed. Highlight the name of the cybertank design you wish to remove and select the DELETE button.

WARNING: Once a cybertank design is terminated, it cannot be recovered!

  • QUIT
    Exits t he DCM and returns you to the External Control Module (ECM).

2.2.2 The EDIT Menu

Diagram 2.2.2 - EDIT Menu

  • CUT
    Removes selected text from the AI and places it in temporary storage.
     
  • COPY
    Places selected text into temporary storage without removing it from the AI.

NOTE: Only the last saved text is kept in temporary storage. When you cut or copy new text, previously stored text is lost.

  • PASTE
    Inserts all text in temporary storage at the current cursor position. If tent has been highlighted/selected, it is replaced by the pasted tent.
     
  • CLEAR
    Removes selected text from the Al without disturbing the contents of the temporary storage buffer.
     
  • SELECT ALL
    Selects all of the text in the AI.
     
  • EXPANDED TEXT
    Toggles between the short command structure and the long, verbose structure when using the CCL Construction Panel (CP - see Section 2.5). For example, the command “If Tank Found Then Shoot” becomes “If Enemy Tank Was Found Then Shoot” when EXPANDED TEXT is turned on. The default setting is EXPANDED TEXT on, denoted by a checkmark preceding the EXPANDED TEXT menu item.
     
  • UNDO
    There will be times when you mistakenly delete portions of Al and your suddenly realize the error of doing so. If you immediately select the UNDO option from the EDIT menu, then your lost action will be undone. Please note that this only works if you immediately select UNDO.

2.2.3 The CAPSULE Menu

Diagram 2.2.3 - CAPSULE Menu

SPECIAL NOTE: See Part 4 for a complete description of the creation and use of AI Capsules.

  • NEW
    Used to initiate the design of a new Al Capsule. When selected, you are transferred directly to the Al Module (see Section 2.4).
     
  • LOAD
    Used to retrieve a previously saved AI Capsule. If selected, the FRP appears. Highlight the desired capsule and select the LOAD button. You are transferred to the AI Module (see Section 2.4), with the selected capsule loaded.
     
  • INCLUDE
    Used to place an Al Capsule into your cybertank’s Al. When Selected, the FRP is displayed. Select the desired Al Capsule and it will be inserted at the current cursor position.
     
  • SAVE
    Used to save the current AI Capsule.
     
  • VERIFY
    Used to check an AI Capsule for syntax errors. This process is analogous to the Authorization procedure used when designing cybertanks, but no chassis design is required.
     
  • DELETE
    Used to remove AI Capsules from your ID Disc. When selected, the FTP displays the names of all AI Capsules on your ID Disc. Highlight the AI Capsule you want to delete and select the DELETE button.

WARNING: Once an AI Capsule has been deleted, it cannot be recovered!

  • PRINT
    Prints a complete listing of the current AI Capsule to your printer. Refer to the OSI/CACD System 2 Reference Card for more specific instructions for printing.

2.3 CHASSIS DESIGN MODULE

2.3.1 GENERAL

The Chassis Design Module (CDM) is used to create and modify a cybertank’s chassis, including its tank class, fuel ceils, drive system, weapon type, scanner, and assorted special items.
A varied selection of components provides endless possibilities for chassis design - limited only by budget restrictions. Due to variations in price and attributes, it is important to be selective with the components used in your design. Some tank classes weigh more than others, some Weapons fire faster than others, etc. To assist in the design phase, the attributes of each component are included in tables in this section.
You must choose at least one of each component, with the exception of special items. if you fail to equip your cybertank with one of each component, your cybertank will be useless and thus not authorized for combat simulations.
Chassis design is limited by your budget. Your budget is limited by your security clearance. Entry-level security clearance is designated STANDARD. There are ten clearance levels available to cybernetic engineers. Promotions to higher clearance levels are based upon the efficiency and effectiveness of your cybertanks (see Section 6, CLEARANCE EVALUATION). A budget of 1000 credits accompanies a STANDARD Clearance. Each successive clearance level increases your budget by 1000 credits.

2.3.2 CDM CONTROLS

Upon entering the CDM, the cybertank’s general specifications are displayed in the the Main Display Area (see Diagram 2.3.2). These specifications can be displayed at any time by selecting the Specifications button.

Diagram 2.3.2 - Chassis Design Module (CDM)

Select any of the other component buttons (Tank Class, Fuel Ceils, Drive System, Weapon Type, Scanner, or Special items) to display a list of specific options for that component. Choose the desired component and the small, circular button directly to the left of the item becomes highlighted. With the exception of Special items, you can select only one option per component. You can select ail of the options in Special items (if you have enough credits).

2.3.3 TANK CLASSES

Tank classes have the following attributes: weight, armor, and water resistance. Weight affects movement, and light cybertanks move faster than heavy cybertanks. Strong armor offers better damage protection than light armor. Only amphibious cybertanks can traverse water without damage. The following table itemizes the attributes of each tank class:
TANK CLASS WEIGHT ARMOR AMPHIBIOUS COST
Cougar X Medium Weak No 200
Sherman M7 Heavy Weak Yes 350
Olpymia Light Weak No 500
Bradley Medium Average No 650
Mercury Weak Weak Yes 750
Centaur Light Average No 825
Challenger Heavy Strong No 975
M5 Turtle Medium Average Yes 1100
Britannia Medium Strong Yes 1500
Bentley Light Strong Yes 2000

2.3.4 FUEL CELLS

Fuel is required for all cybertank functions. The more fuel cells a cybertank carries, the longer it will run. When a cybertank’s fuel supply is exhausted, no mechanical functions will operate.

2.3.5 DRIVE SYSTEMS

The drive system controls all mechanical functions. Its weight affects movement and fuel consumption. The heavier the drive, the slower the cybertank and the more fuel it consumes. Drive system speed is rated from one to five, one being slowest, five being fastest.
DRIVE SYSTEM WEIGHT SPEED COST
Light Light 1 150
Standard Medium 2 275
Heavy Heavy 3 400
Turbo Medium 3 525
Dual-Turbo Light 3 700
Gyro Heavy 4 900
Flux Medium 4 1200
Fission Light 4 1500
Fussion Medium 5 2000
Ion Light 5 2500

2.3.6 WEAPON TYPES

Cybertanks can be equipped with only one weapon. Weapons vary in their firing speed, damage capabilities, and areas of damage.
Weapons that use shells are slower than others, since they must reload after every shot. Lasers do not require any reloading time and are the fastest weapons.
Projectile weapons (Piercing, Explosive, and High Explosive) inflict medium damage on external instrumentation and armor.
Lasers create havoc internally, but have little effect on external components.
Gauss guns are electrical weapons that inflict heavy damage on external mechanisms (scanner, weapon, etc.), but have little effect on internal systems.
Plasma guns are extremely effective against armor, but do little damage internally.
Nuclear weapons cause very heavy damage to all cybertank systems.
WEAPON SPEED DAMAGE AMOUNT DAMAGE AREA COST
Piercing Slow Light Ext. Armor/Instruments 175
Explosive Slow Light-Medium Ext. Armor/Instruments 250
High Explosive Anti-Tank Slow Medium Ext. Armor/Instruments 457
Laser Fast Medium Internal 675
Turbo Laser Fast Medium-Heavy Internal 750
Gauss Gun Average Heavy Ext. Armor/Instruments 900
Plasma Gun Average Heavy Ext. Armor 1300
Nuke Slow Heavy External / Internal 1800

2.3.7 SPECIAL ITEMS

Special items are optional and not required for authorization. You can equip your cybertank with as many special items as your budget allows. Some special items require accompanying logic in your cybertank’s artificial intelligence. Others are automatically activated when placed in your cybertank’s chassis. The following provides detailed information on each special item:
  • Energy Miser
    Reduces the fuel consumption rate by approximately 50%. This device can be activated without special Al instructions.
     
  • Comm-Link
    Used to communicate with other cybertanks on your team. In team combat, a cybertank without a Comm-Link is unable to communicate with team members.

    This device requires special Al instructions. See Part 3, Section 6 for more information.
     
  • Repair Kit
    Multi-purpose repair kits can repair any damage to a cybertank. There are only four repairs allowed per kit, SO use them wisely.

    This device requires special Al instructions. See Part 3, Section 5.1 for more information.
     
  • Scanner Lock
    A normal scanner only identifies the current location of an enemy cybertank and movement cannot be detected unless you perform multiple scans. You can lock onto an enemy cybertank and track its movement by using the Scanner lock. By using this item, your scanner will rotate automatically to face the enemy and is unaffected by your cybertank’s movement.

    You can unlock your scanner at any time. It unlocks automatically if the target cybertank is destroyed or the scanner’s view is obstructed. in addition, an enemy cybertank can unlock your scanner by disrupting your signal with a Jammer (described below).

    This device requires special Al instructions. See Part 3, Section 3.6 for more information.
     
  • Listener
    Determines whether or not an enemy cybertank has locked onto you with its scanner. Identifies the need to jam an enemy signal.

    This device requires special AI instructions. See Part 3, Section 3.7 for more information.
     
  • Jammer
    Used to jam an opponent’s scanner signal once lock-on has been discovered. The Jammer disrupts an enemy’s scanner signal and forces it to unlock. A Listner device need not be installed for the Jammer to function.

    This device requires special Al instructions. See Part 3, Section 3.8 for more information.
     
  • Launcher
    This device launches a remote scanner into the air. A remote scanner links your Cybertank Scanner System (CSS) with the OSICOM I satellite. Once linked, you are relayed the location of the enemy cybertank nearest you.

    Remote scanners remain airborne only briefly and are destroyed upon impact with the ground. Each Launcher is equipped with only four remote scanners and should be used wisely.

    This device requires special Al instructions. See Part 3, Section 3.9 for more information.
     
  • Defense Shield
    This offers additional protection against enemy cybertanks. Although damage is greatly reduced with the shield up, it is not eliminated.

    You can raise and lower the shield at any time, but a raised shield restricts the use of other systems - the scanner range is cut in half, fuel consumption increases, and most importantly, the cybertank is unable to fire its weapon. All systems function normally when the shield is lowered.

    This device requires special Al instructions. See Part 3, Section 5.2 for more information.
     
  • Accelerator
    Increases the processing speed of a cybertank’s on-board computer. Logic operations are twice as fast. An accelerator does not speed up mechanical cybertank operations, such as movement or scanner rotation.

    No Al instructions are required for this device.

2.4 ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE MODULE

2.4.1 GENERAL

A special Cybertank Command language (CCL) was developed to aid in the design of a cybertank’s artificial intelligence. The creation of a cybertank’s Al is performed using the Artificial Intelligence Module (Al Module).
The AI Module contains a full-featured text editor. CCL commands can be entered from the keyboard or with the CCL Construction Panel (CP) (see Section 2.5). Once entered, commands can be edited using cut, copy, paste, insert and delete functions.
AI design can be facilitated using predesigned AI library Capsules. Library Capsules are self-contained segments of artificial intelligence that perform isolated functions. You can modify existing library Capsules or create new Capsules using the AI Module. See Part 4 for more information on library Capsules.

2.4.2 THE INSERTION CURSOR

All text, whether entered by keyboard or with the CP, is inserted at the thin vertical bar referred to as the Insertion Cursor (IC). You can move the lC anywhere in the edit window by moving the mouse/joystick pointer and clicking the button. In addition, you can move the IC with the following CURSOR keys (please refer to the OSI/CACD System 2 Reference Card to determine the appropriate kegs for your terminal type):
The CURSOR-LEFT key moves the IC one character to the left. If the IC is at the beginning of a line, CURSOR-LEFT moves it to the end of the previous line.
The CURSOR-RIGHT key moves the IC one character to the right. If the IC is already at the end of a line, CURSOR-RIGHT moves it to the beginning of the following line.
The CURSOR-UP key moves the IC to the beginning of the current line. If the It is already at the beginning of a line, CURSOR-UP moves it to the beginning of the previous line.
The CURSOR-DOWN key moves the IC to the end of the current line. If the IC is already at the end of the line, CURSOR-DOWN moves it to the end of the following line.

2.4.3 Inserting Text

The purpose of the IC is to indicate the point in the text at which characters can be inserted or deleted. Text can be inserted between any two characters. To insert text, simply move the IC to the position at which you want to start adding text and begin entering the text you want to insert.

2.4.4 Deleting Text

Text can be removed one character at a time using the DELETE key. Each time you press DELETE, the character to the left of the IC is removed. Characters to the right of the IC move left to fill in the gap.

2.4.5 Adding New lines

New lines can be added anywhere in the text. Labels always begin in the far left column. Other lines are indented. Since labels are less common than other lines, the Al Module will automatically indent each new line when you press RETURN.
To move the IC from the indentation column to the far left column (ie., remove the indentation), press DELETE. To move the IC from the far left column to the indentation column (ie., indent), press TAB. Please refer to the OSI/CACD System 2 Reference Card to determine the TRB and DELETE keys for your particular terminal type.

2.4.6 Scrolling

You can scroll the text by clicking anywhere on the scroll-bar located directly to the right of the edit window. Clicking directly on the scroll-bar will scroll the text several lines. Clicking on the small arrows directly above and below the scroll-bar will scroll one line. By clicking on the small plaque (or “thumbprint” as it is often called), you can drag the plaque to any location in the scroll-bar. This thumbprint represents the location of the text currently visible in the edit window. For example, if the edit window is displaying the first few lines of text, then the thumbprint will be at the very top of the scroll-bar. On the other hand, if the edit window is currently displaying the last few lines of text, then the thumbprint will be at the very bottom of the scroll-bar.

2.4.7 SELECTING TEXT

You can select and edit sections of text, such as words, lines, or paragraphs. Selected sections of text appear highlighted.
Text can be selected by dragging the mouse/joystick from a beginning selection point to an end point. Move the pointer to the beginning of the text you wish to select, press and hold the button down, and move the pointer to the end of the text section. Then release the button and the text will be highlighted.
To select text with the keyboard, move the IC to the beginning of the text you wish to select, press the MARK key (refer to the OSI/CACD System 2 Reference Card for keyboard control of the Al Module), then move the IC to the end of the text. Text is highlighted as it is selected.
When using a mouse or joystick, text is deselected by moving the IC. With the keyboard, text is deselected by pressing the MARK key a second time.

2.4.8 Deleting a Section of Text

To delete a section of text, select the text by using one of the methods discussed above (it will be highlighted) and press DELETE.

2.4.9 Replacing a Section of Text

To replace a section of text, simply select it and type the replacement text. There is no need to press DELETE.

2.4.10 Cutting and Pasting Text

You can easily rearrange sections of text using the Cut and Paste functions. You can remove (Cut) a selected section of tent, like a sentence or paragraph, and move it to another location (Paste).
To Cut, select the desired text section and choose CUT from the EDIT menu. The selected text is removed from the edit window and stored internally by the AI Module.
To Paste that section into a new location, move the IC to a Position that marks the beginning of the insertion. Select PASTE from the EDIT menu. The text you stored (Cut) is inserted at the IC.

2.4.11 Copying and Pasting Text

You can duplicate (copy) a section of text and place it in a new location. This function does not remove selected text from its current location in the edit window.
To Copy, select a section of text and choose COPY from the EDIT menu. A duplicate or copy of the selected text is stored internally by the AI Module.
To Paste, move the IC to a position that marks the beginning of the insertion. Select PASTE from the EDIT menu. A copy of the stored text is inserted at the current location of the IC. You can continue to paste that section into new locations by moving the IC and selecting PASTE from the EDIT menu.

WARNING: A cut or copied section of text is only stored temporarily. Each time you cut or copy a new section of text, any previously stored text is removed from internal storage.

2.4.12 UNDO

There will be times when you mistakenly delete portions of AI and you suddenly realize the error of doing so. If you immediately select the UNDO option from the EDIT menu, then your last action will be undone. Please note that this only works if you immediately select UNDO.

2.5 USING THE CCL CONSTRUCTION PANEL (CP)

The CCL Construction Panel (CP) can assist in the design of a cybertank’s Al. The panel, located at the bottom of the AI Module screen, provides access to OSI command language instructions. Using the CP, you can easily incorporate any of the instructions into your cybertank design.
If you are using a mouse or joystick, the CP is always enabled when using the text editor. if you are using the keyboard, you can use the CP as follows: (1) Press the CONNECT key, (2) Use the CURSOR keys to highlight the desired plaque, (3) Press RETURN. When you are done using the CP, press the CONNECT key to disconnect from the CP. please see the OSI/CACD System 2 Reference Card to determine the CONNECT, CURSOR, and RETURN keys for your particular terminal type.
The CP is a series of plaques corresponding to specific cybertank functions (See Diagram 2.5.1 below). Move the pointer to the desired function and click on the plaque.

Diagram 2.5.1 - AI Module Construction Panel (CP)

The plaque marked Special is used to implement special items and instructions (ex: Self Destruct instruction). The if Plaque provides all conditional instructions. The blank Plaque skips a line in the AI text editor.
The CP guides you ‘through ail the combinations of instructions authorized by OSI for cybertank design. The CP.is critically important if you are unsure of the instructions needed to implement a design element. The CP can simplify the design process.
For example, you want to make your cybertank move, but are unsure of the Specific command language needed to implement movement.
Select the Move plaque. The panel now displays Forward and Backward plaques, since a cybertank can only move in those directions. Select one of the plaques and you will be taken to the next step in the design phase for movement.
For example, click on the Forward plaque. The panel now displays a a series of number plaques. The number plaques are used to specify the amount of forward movement. The plaque marked ‘1’ represents one hectometer, ‘2’ equals two hectometers, and so forth. There is also a plaque marked Var that lets you specify a system or user variable as the number of hectometers. [This should only be used by advanced users familiar with variables.]
Select the plaque marked 1. In the tent editor, you will see the AI computer type out Move Tank Forward 1’. You have just instructed your cybertank to move forward by one hectometer.
As you can see, selecting a Series of plaques results in the appropriate instruction being included in your cybertank’s AI. The AI computer automatically types the instruction into your tent editor and resets the plaques on the CP.
Some commands require that you enter a label or variable, or decide between a “BRRNCH TO” and a “DO” structure. For example, see Diagram 2.5.2.

Diagram 2.5.2 - Partially completed AI line using the CP

In the above diagram, the bottom left portion of the screen shows the two options: ‘“BRANCH TO” and “DO’. You can select either of these options before entering the label.
All “IF/THEN” commands need either a “BRANCH TO” or ‘“DO” and the entry of a label. (For more information on using various commands, See Part 3 of this handbook.) Once you have chosen the appropriate instruction and selected “BRANCH TO” or “DO”, you should enter a routine name (called a “Label”).
The best way to become familiar with the CP is simply to Play around with it. Most plaques are self-explanatory.

NOTE: You can always return to the previous series of Plaques by clicking anywhere on the CP (except a plaque). This is extremely helpful if you have mistakenly selected an incorrect plaque.

You can return to the main series of plaques by clicking anywhere in the text editor.

2.6 THE AUTHORIZATION MODULE

Once you have selected your cybertank’s chassis and designed its Al, you must Authorize it. This process checks the Chassis for design flaws, and compares your list of Al instructions against those approved by OSI.
During the authorization procedure, OSI notifies you of unacceptable instructions. Once notified of an unauthorized instruction you can resume the procedure (to receive notification of all other errors), or abort authorization altogether. When an error exists in instructions, you are automatically returned to the AI module for corrections. If a problem occurs in your chassis design, you are transferred to the Chassis Design Module (CDM).
Your cybertank design must be authorized by OSI before it is allowed on a battlefield. If your cybertank design does not pass Authorization, refer to Appendix 5 for a complete list of all Authorization errors and their possible remedies.
Once your design has been approved, OSI creates a cybertank ready for battle. Once the cybertank is created, you are given a choice of whether to exit to the ECM or return to the design module.
When you return to the design module, the design used to invoke the authorization process is displayed. You can then make additional modifications, save the cybertank design, or quit.

WARNING: Authorizing your cybertank’s design does NOT save the design to your ID Disc. You must save the design yourself.

NOTE: Whenever you use the cybertank editor to modify a design, you must obtain authorization for the design changes. If you fail to re-authorize a design and enter a battle, the cybertank will use its old chassis and AI and not the modified design.

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