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Rubicon Volunteers - Deep in the Aardvarks
Posted By: Steve LevinsonDate: 6/15/02 11:56 p.m.

This is another seminal level. As in Hairy Legs, where you go from here depends on your success or failure in your mission - in this case, saving the good Admiral. Succeed and you will both insure the defeat of the Pfhor and switch to the Salinger Plank, giving you the opportunity to save humanity from the evils of the ultimate in corporate greed. If you fail, you must continue in the Pfhor Plank with only one chance much later in the game to get to the Salinger Plank. So let’s go try to save the Admiral!

I confess that in preparing this segment on Aardvarks, I was forced to update my Rubicon Secrets Guide – it turns out that I had missed a secret terminal until I found it in DTB just now. Shame on me – I failed to follow my own rules. If you can see it or reach it, you have to go there, especially once you’ve completed the level! There are some other secrets in this level, so definitely check out the secrets guide for more information if you need it.

This entire level takes place thousands of meters under ground, which gives it a different feel from almost the entire scenario. It’s very dark and creepy down here and, as in Molten Hydrogen Monoxide, there are a lot of hunks and other bad guys to deal with, and a few harmless slaves (at least we thought they were harmless until the last thread). The object is to get to the main oar crushing complex where the Admiral is being held. Unfortunately, there are a lot other passages that are little more than dead ends with hunks, hunters, troopers and compilers to fight. Once you do get inside the main complex, however, you’ll find that you still can’t get the Admiral, even though you can see him.

About the only thing you can do to help him at this point is to take out the enforcer that is guarding him. This is I believe your first close encounter with enforcers in Rubicon, so be warned, their weapons are much more advanced than anything you have seen in Marathon before. I once initiated a thread on the Story forum hypothesizing that the enforcers developed their weapons technology in Marathon 2 and Infinity after observing the effects of your Napalm weapon in the first Marathon. Well, the new weapon is the fastest, deadliest thing yet. It is an energy weapon not unlike the fusion rifle you carry, but the energy bolts travel much more quickly. On top of that, the bolts are guided. Dodging enforcer fire in Rubicon is nearly impossible, so you really need to catch them by surprise – a couple of full magnums works well at keeping them from firing back. At close range the enforcers use a secondary mode that results in an intense discharge that, curiously, is just as lethal to the enforcer as to you.

To take out the enforcer guarding the Admiral, the magnum is the only thing you carry that can shoot through the barrier separating the two of you. Unfortunately, the enforcer bolts can pass through the barrier, too, so you’ll need to be accurate. Getting to the Admiral will require a trip through the main oar crusher. To open the doors to the oar crusher, you need to read one of the terminals in the facility. Many players make the mistake of thinking that the crusher doors that they have to get through are tops of the crusher doors, which are accessible on the upper level inside the facility. There are some goodies worth going after behind them, but you’ll never survive the trip through unless you can find an invincibility power-up – Hmm . . . To get to the actual crusher, you will need to go back outside the facility and through a now open door. Try to synchronize your movements so that you take no damage going through the crusher – you’ll need all the shield strength you can find to fight the troopers and hunters waiting for you. A 3X power-up would definitely come in handy – Hmm . . .

Once you reach the Admiral, you’ll need to act quickly – find a wire panel to destroy, or the Admiral will become a pancake and you’ll be spending a lot of time in the Pfhor Plank. Of course for full enjoyment of the Rubicon experience, you must do the complete Pfhor Plank at some point, and there will be an opportunity to get to the Salinger Plank later. One could argue, however, that the optimum outcome is to save the Admiral after having failed to shut down the reactor in Hairy Legs, at least if your objective is to insure the defeat of the Pfhor and save humanity from it’s own destructive impulses. Either way, once you have finished Aardvarks, use your SPNKR to get back to the point where you entered the level to read the secret terminal. This will tell you that, in the original version, there was no way to save the Admiral, and you had to throw the switch to kill him in order to leave the level. How morbid. In any case, save the Admiral and it’s off to Rozinante IV in the Salinger Plank; fail to save him and it’s off to Rozinante V in the Pfhor Plank, which is where we’ll be heading next.


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Replies:

Rubicon Volunteers - Deep in the AardvarksSteve Levinson 6/15/02 11:56 p.m.
     Re: Rubicon Volunteers - Deep in the AardvarksInverted Sock Puppet 6/18/02 12:38 a.m.
           Re: Rubicon Volunteers - Deep in the AardvarksSteve Levinson 6/18/02 10:06 a.m.
           Re: Rubicon Volunteers - Deep in the AardvarksScott 6/18/02 3:11 p.m.
                 i like the female bob *NM*Tru7h 6/18/02 7:20 p.m.
                 Wow...Callie21V 6/21/02 3:08 p.m.
           Re: Rubicon Volunteers - Deep in the AardvarksC Lund 6/18/02 3:37 p.m.
                 Re: Rubicon Volunteers - Deep in the AardvarksInverted Sock Puppet 6/19/02 12:57 a.m.
                       I like your sense of humor, Sock ;-) *NM*Steve Levinson 6/19/02 7:54 a.m.
                             I live to give :) *NM*Inverted Sock Puppet 6/20/02 12:40 a.m.



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