The Let's Play Archive

Martian Dreams

by Nakar

Part 6: Fat People & Robots

Fat People & Robots

"Perhaps we should go look for those explorers."
"No. Absolutely not. In fact, we're going exactly the opposite way. To Cooter's motherlode. Just because it's far away from them."

Along the way, we meet our first non-plantimal foe, an Agrobot. It's some kind of tracked robot that looks vaguely like a Mars rover. We beat it up until it falls over. Take that, NASA!

Outside the station Cooter labeled as his "mutherlode" are berry plants, some of them ripe enough to collect from.

The tower itself is very clearly alien...

...though the interior has a certain rustpunk style. The lights are all off and most of the doors that aren't already open won't do so without power. There's also tons of industrial equipment.

But that isn't all.

You see a gold metallic mechanical man.
The golden head swivels toward you.
"Awesome, a robot!"
"Sorry, a what?"
"It's a term from, err..."
"From where the Doctor and Avatar are from."
"Uh, yes. A mechanical man."
"Seems like hogwash if you ask me."
"Is it now? Robot, what is your name?"
"I am called Coker."
"What is your major malfunction?"
"Is it really wise to let her..."
"Don't worry, no one is more qualified to handle robots, demons, wizards and martians than Steve."
"Does Warren Spector ever lie?"
"Well, there was Invisible W-"
"Lies are technically different from unfulfilled promises, and I technically didn't work on that game anyway. Trust me."
"I extract coal from the wall and place it on the conveyor belt. When the belt is empty, I move coal to it from the wall. The belt moves the coal to Stoker."
"Stoker is another robot?"
"Yes. Stoker takes the coal off the other end of the belt."
"Wait a second, coal?"
"The coal is in the wall. It must be moved to the belt."
"I guess we're dealing with a one-track mind."
"I understand the feeling."

The conveyor belt is busted. I'll grab it, because obviously somebody's got to fix it.

I just want to stress this a couple times this update: Mars is coal-powered. How awesome is that?

At the other end of the belt is the second robot, Stoker.

You see a gold metallic mechanical man.
The golden head swivels toward you.
"Stoker, I presume. What is your purpose?"
"I assist in the process of power generation by moving coal from the conveyor belt to the furnace."
"Let me see if I get this straight... Mars is covered in high technology, and it's powered by coal. Just making sure I've got this right."
"The generators create electrical energy. There are broadcast towers which then distribute the energy to the surface of the planet. The towers are located at the end of the mine tunnels to the east of my chamber. The final tunnel to the surface is wide and well-lit. The aboveground cables are fragile and must be protected from any kind of power surge. Any sudden change in power could damage them, and they are essential to surface power distribution."
"This all sounds rather complicated! Dr. Spector, do you suppose we could fix it?"
"I'm not sure. It might be possible to restart the systems, but there's no telling how long they have been offline, and as Stoker has noted, a sudden reactivation could destroy the system despite our efforts. I imagine we won't get far without trying, however."
"Without electrical energy, many of the necessities of life on the surface do not function. Transport and access to certain areas are adversely affected. Transport tubes, canal bridges, and many doors do not function without power."
"So let's get some coal and get started!"
"Potential error: Coal appears on the belt and is put in the furnace. The conveyor belt supplies coal which I put in the furnace, but the conveyor belt is not functional and must be repaired."
Leftenant Dibbs clears his throat and says, "There's that fellow named Trippet who lives at Olympus. I am certain that he knows how to fix a canvas conveyor belt."
Stoker looks at you, almost expectantly.
"He seems so sad. Let's recruit him!"
"Absolutely not."
"Awwww, but Warren..."
"You'd just wind up getting him broken, and without these robots any power activation will be short-lived at best. We'll just have to ignore them."
"Fine, but if we encounter any robot women on this journey you must let me bring them with me."
"As the odds of that are phenomenally low, I'll accept."
"I like those odds."

There's not much else in here and I'm out of matches and lamp oil, so one quick look around before we book it. A hand drill is pretty cool and all, but...

...a freaking rivet gun is cooler. Or maybe I've been playing too much BioShock. Or not enough BioShock. Unfortunately I don't think it can be used as a weapon; it's basically just a tool.

There are also some scrolls in one of the other rooms. I don't know what they're for yet.

Here's the inactive power tower. Slightly moldy, but still intact.

Since we need someone at Olympus to fix the power on Mars (COAL-POWERED PLANET), it's off to walk there. Along the way I encounter worm grass, which wiggles disturbingly. It doesn't seem to be aggressive. I'm not even sure it's an enemy. It could just be foliage. But I'm still creeped out.

The transport tube station. If it worked, it might be possible to zip around Mars. It doesn't, and the doors are sealed anyway, but if it did...

Sadly, we're not getting into Olympus that easily.

You see a burly man who watches your every move.
"Hold on there! No one may enter the city of Olympus who is not known to us."
"What the hell do you mean known? I'm the Av-"
"Sorry, Miss Steve. But what DO you mean?"
"Before you may enter our settlement, we must have proof of your integrity and soundness of your mind. We have had too many incidents with daft people from Elysium."
"What sort of proof do you require?"
"Something to make us certain you're not one of those raving madmen from Elysium. To insure this, you must be certified by three men whose character is known to us and whose soundness of mind is certain."
"I say, sir, would my voucher for Steve qualify? If so, I will gladly give it."
"What? You haven't been in our settlement in weeks! I am certain that your signature would not be worth the paper it was written on." Addressing you, he says, "No, we must have the signatures of at least three men known to us."
"I know where this is going and I don't like it."
"Very well, if my signature will not pass muster, what of those of the three explorers, Sherman, Yellin, and Duprey?"
"Please, God, please no."
"Yes, if they will vouch for you, then I can let you pass."
"The last time I saw them they were headed to the west. Said something about checking out the area around Sytris Major. You might try around the coordinates 10N 71E. They could be in that area."
"And what makes you all think everyone else is mad, in the first place?"
"Because everyone living in Elysium thinks they're Martian! This started soon after they figured out how to use some kind of Martian dream machine. Mr. Segal says that they have all lost their minds, and could be very dangerous. You should stay away from there. Also, if you meet Marcus, make an excuse to leave and get out of there. He's also used the machine, and now claims to be able to speak to it. He is clearly insane."
"Well hell, I guess we're stuck going after my dumb friends' ancestors or something. Hooray."