This walkthru of HARD NOVA is divided into three parts. Part 1 contains
basic game mechanics information and should be considered a supplement to the
manual Part 2 is the walkthru; Part 3 contains location information for the
As in any role-playing game, character development is necessary to win;
however,in HARD NOVA, the player has an additional problem: You cannot dismiss
a character that has been added to your party. Several characters you find are
duplicates of each other in their abilities to help you win. Others exist only
for one mission and have no other use. This means the player must decide what
characters are to be developed. All characters can gain experience points, but
key characters need to be sent on ground m issions to gain the extra points
needed to properly develop their abilities.
Experience points can be gained only in combat.In ground combat each
character gains points by just inflicting damage on the attackers. In space
combat every character shares equally in the points gained by damaging an
enemy ship. Characters who are sent to the ground in an away team gain the
most points due to ground combat. Your ground squad is limited to three
members,and Stark/Nova must be the squad leader. You can have less than a full
squad. There is a slot (the recruit slot) for a fourth characte r; however,
any character in that slot remains there only until you return to the ship.
This is an important point to remember since it makes a significant difference
at one point in the game.
Each time your character reaches a new level, you are given ability
points to spread around your abilities. The number of ability points your
character gets is based on the Aptitude ability. When Aptitude is 8, your
character gets 3 ability points. When Aptitude is 11, your character gets 4
ability points. So, you get one additional ability point with every 3-point
increase in Aptitude. The maximum level for Aptitude is 20. This is a very
important ability to increase quickly and early on.
This ability determines how fast your character can shoot in ground
combat.It is very important to increase this ability as soon as you can for
characters who will be sent on ground missions. This ability determines the
Speed as shown on page 31 of the m anual. A Speed of 10 or better is needed; a
Speed of 15 or better is preferred.
This ability determines how many hit points your character gets with each
increase in level and is crucial to ground combat successes.A Fitness of 10 or
better is needed; however, this ability can be increased gradually.
This ability determines your character's accuracy with Standard Weapons.
It determines the "To Hit" value on the screen on page 31 of the manual. You
want a To Hit of 50% or better.A To Hit of 95% is the maximum your character
can get; there is no point in increasing Firearms once your character reaches
95%. Firearms are the only weapons you will find in the early part of the
game, so this ability should be increased early. This ability is only of use
to characters in your ground squad.
This ability determines your character's accuracy with Special
Weapons.You do not have to increase this ability until you find some Special
Weapons.When you do find Special Weapons, it's better to not use them until a
character has enough points in Speci al Weapons to have a To Hit of 50% or
This ability determines your character's accuracy with melee weapons.
Melee weapons are generally useless in this game; you can ignore this ability.
This ability is added to Firearms, Special Weapons, or Close Combat to
determine the To Hit percentage.Increasing this ability is not as effective as
increasing the actual weapon ability, but it does apply to all weapons.
This ability applies only to Nova or Stark and is generally not
necessary. It is used in conjunction with grenades.
This ability generally is not useful except for darcators; all the
darcators you can add to your party have this ability at a very high level
THE REMAINING ABILITIES
The Ship-Based abilities are fairly straightforward.They should be at
least 8 to be effective but are really only effective when they reach 10 or
better.The exceptions are Programming and Star Comm. Your ship starts out with
Level B Programming. You cann ot safely increase the programming until
Programming ability reaches 12. Thereafter, you can safely increase the
programming level one level for every additional point. You cannot do
effective ship scanning until Star Comm reaches 14 or better.
Close combat weapons are useless; ignore them. Upgrade weapons as fast as
possible. There are three exceptions to this rule.First,the SMG-70X has a high
rate of fire and can compensate for a low Speed. Second,Special Weapons should
not be used until a ch aracter has a high To Hit percentage; otherwise,you
just waste ammo. The third exception involves ammo. You can only carry a
limited supply of ammo.To avoid having one character run out of ammo,you
should try to have everyone use weapons that use the sam e ammo because then
you can share.Of course, if you find an exceptionally powerful weapon,then you
should use it as soon as someone has a high To Hit percentage with that
Upgrade all armor as fast as you can. The only warning about armor is
that it can reduce your character's Speed stat.Your selection of who wears the
armo may depend on how it effects their Speed.Also,the enemy mainly shoots at
the lead character.That cha racter should always have the best available armor
and highest hit points or he will die early and often.Similarly,the lead
character in the ground squad should have the best medical lining you can
Dropped objects do NOT disappear; they stay around for you to pick up
later. Pass cards are one-use items and should be dropped as soon as they are
used. When in doubt, drop the object. Objects only disappear when you sell
them or give them away.
GIVING AND USING OBJECTS
To give an object, make it the top item in the pool.Then,target the
person to whom you wish to give the object,go into the inventory screen(shown
on page 13 of the manual),and press "I" to give the object. It will vanish
from the pool. Next, press "F7" ( Talk) to get the result of giving the
object.WARNING: Giving an object deletes it from the game. If you give
something to the wrong person, it is gone. So save before giving anything
Only the lead character can use an object. To use an object, put it in
the inventory of the lead character. The "Use" option will automatically come
up when you reach the place where the object can be used.
Different shops sell different items at different prices. They will also
pay different prices for items.Be sure to keep good notes on what is sold
where & for what price. Sold objects disappear,so do not sell something unless
you are sure that you no lon ger need it.
FRIENDLIES AND NOT SO FRIENDLIES
In general,any character that shows up as a blue dot is a friendly and
should not be killed. However, in some situations, a blue-dot character is
really an enemy. The blue dot is just an indicator that you should talk to the
character first, then you can kill him or her. This should be obvious from the
THE ENDLESS HORDE
In most cases, a dead enemy stays dead; however, in some mazes, dead
enemies regenerate. In these mazes doing ANYTHING that clears the maze screen
regenerates the enemy.This includes pressing "F9" to view data disks. Pressing
"F10" and immediately return ing to the game without doing anything
regenerates the enemy. Once you find such a maze, be very careful when you
clear off the maze screen, or you will have to refight the entire battle all
RECRUITS AND CASH
Your first order of business is to recruit a new crew and make some
Making money is easy: Smuggle.At first,just smuggle to Tikorr. The payoff
is low but the trips are short and easy. Ariel is very dangerous and should be
avoided unless you are going there anyway for other reasons. Ciberan is also
very dangerous but has a very high payoff.Smuggle to Ciberan as soon as you
are ready for the big bucks. The key to being a successful smuggler is get in
fast and get out fast: don't stick around to fight.
You start off on Mastassini where you can easily pick up Ace Elcator in
the bar immediately.On Tikorr,there are two cities.In the bar of one, you can
pick up Cerallon.Galejay is in the bar at the other city,but you need to get a
Grav Blocker for him befo re he will join. Galejay makes an excellent Gunner.
These are the only people you can recruit initially. You can pick up a Grav
Blocker later in the game.
GET A'KRI JANR OFF THE GROUND SQUAD ASAP. You cannot win the game if he
dies. He is useless in ground combat and is easily killed. He cannot be
The robot maze on Mastassini is a safe way to get experience points. The
maze is also a long and boring way to get experience points,but its usefulness
ends quickly. The maze is a multi-level maze,so search each floor carefully to
find the entrance to th e next level. When you can survive the fourth level,
your characters have exhausted the usefulness of the robot maze.
THE CIBERAN TANKER AFFAIR
This is the first mission and rather tough if you jump right into it.A
little training in the robot maze is nice to have before taking on this
mission.It is also a good idea to upgrade your equipment before heading out.
Locating the shops is left as an e xercise for the player, but you can buy
flak vests, rush AMLs, SMG-70Xs, and M23-30ARs; the prices are quite high.You
will have to make quite a few smuggling runs to afford everything.
The tanker is one of the ships hanging around the star gate in the
Ciberan system.Just target ships until you find a Ciberan tanker that you can
board.If you cannot board, you have the wrong tanker. Good tactics are the
keys to winning this battle. Isola te each hijacker and overwhelm them with
superior numbers. Trapping them in a room is best, but if you can keep the
other hijackers off screen,you can isolate individual hijackers in the
hallways. You need to give the hijackers' leader's head to Kendal a s proof of
THE LANTA DISPUTE
You get this assignment at the same time as you get the Ciberan
assignment.It is an optional side mission,but it also has the right difficulty
level for your characters at this stage of the game.It is worthwhile doing
this assignment first. The mission i s simple: You are given a location. Once
you arrive, you are given another location. From that location you get the
location of the Lanta leaders. Talk to them before killing them for an
interesting side story. The gems you get as loot should be sold. Th e best
price is found locally.
You are also given the location of Amaro when you get the Ciberan
assignment. He is a good fighter to add your party,but you have to do
something for him. What you have to do is obvious.Read the section in Part 1
on "Using and Giving Objects." Roger come s with some nice weapons that he
will share; however, at this point the best thing to do with his weapons is
store them for later use.
This is the main mission that will lead to the endgame.It is a long,
involved mission that will take several tries to complete.You must recruit
Janai or you cannot hope for success.Both Janai and Cerallon are qualified to
be the ship's Technician, but on ly one of them can take that position. You
have to chose how to assign these two.
The first step is to talk to Sebastian in Meridian city. He gives the
first location to go to. The first three locations are Ciberan bases. Help the
defenders clear out the invading Arielans, then talk to them to find out where
to go next. At the third C iberan base, an Ariel soldier will tell you the
location of the main Ariel base.
At the Ariel invasion base, you will find General Camede Rodgen. Talk to
her first before killing her.You must kill her to proceed to the next step.She
has the pass card you need to see Damien on Ariel.The Ariel base is the
largest and most complicated m aze in the same. Part 3 contains information on
how to get around the maze.
To find Damien,you must show your prowess by killing his guards in Ariel
city (they're on the top floor)One of the Arielans is a rebel spy who will
give you the location of the rebels' secret base. There, you will get the
location of Damien's headquarter s. While you are in Ariel city, talk to the
people in the bar. Two of them will be important later on. You can find a Grav
Blocker for Galejay somewhere Ariel city.
Taking out Damien is a two-part mission. First,talk to Damien.The
entrance to his office is in the northwest corner of the floor. Once you see
him, you must fight your way past his guard because the way you came in is
closed off. Remember the people you talked to in the Ariel city bar?One of
them is the key to defeating Damien. Recruit that person and head straight
back to Damien.That gives you four squad members to fight your way past the
guards again. An extra set of kevlar armor and rush AML is usefu l to have at
this point.However,it is a good idea to hold off taking out Damien until you
have seen what is going on at Rouyn.
Your assignment is to get rid of the probes that have been attacking the
miner at Rouyn. They will point you to a DSRE base on Tikorr. Talk to the
people at the bars on Tikorr.One of them knows the location of the base.The
DSRE base is a dead end for now , but you learn the location of the Darcator
At this point the probes have turned into a major invasion of aliens: the
Typhon.Board one of their ships and retrieve data disks "R" & "S." With those
data disks you can go back to Ariel and take out Damien. You can learn
something interesting about the disks from Damien. After you get that
information, you can go back to the DSRE base.
You will find a Delta Coro force besieging the DSRE base.You have to kill
them and find a way past the DSRE security robots. Locate the blue button on
the first floor before trying to enter the research area. You cannot get past
the stun level; you can o nly bypass it. The first trip will be a dead end but
it's necessary. Once you have the information on the Typhon data disks from
Damien, the DSRE scientists will give you the solution to the Typhon problem.
There are two possible endings to the game based on what you decide to do
at that point.You will find Alice and Waldro at the DSRE base. Alice is not
worth recruiting; however, Waldro will lead you to the Darcator base where you
may pick up a very good e ngineer and some really nice weapons.
The Bremer ship is the asteroid that is farthest away from Rouyn (outside
the cluster of asteroids near Rouyn).Find the data disk on the Bremer ship and
you will know the name of the person on Ariel you need to recruit to get the
Bremers to help you. Tha t ends the game.
This is an optional side mission. Because of their stealth, only one
Darcator is visible at a time. The key to winning this fight is to isolate the
visible Darcator since that is the only Darcator you can shoot at. Pressing
the space bar will cycle throu gh all potentially visible Darcators.This
mission is worth doing for the loot. The only thermocaster in the game is
DELTA CORO BASE
There is no way to find this base except to stumble upon it. Look for a
shielded area on Holbrook; the base is somewhere under the shield.Nothing will
happen here until AFTER you clear out the Delta Coros at the DSRE base. Then,a
very interesting side st ory will be revealed.
You need to board one Typhon warship(not a probe ship)and retrieve data
disks "R" & "S." Once you defeat Damien Altron, he will translate the disks
ARIEL MAIN BASE
The Ariel invasion base has four floors. The floors are usually divided
into sections that cannot be reached from the same floor; you need to go to
another floor to get to those sections. The following is a rough map of the
floors.The number indicates th e floor number and the letter is a section
name.For example "2B"is Section B on Floor 2.This section can only be reached
from Section A on Floor 3 or Section A on Floor 1. You enter the base on Floor
+---3A +-3B-----------------------+ |
| | | |
| +----------+ +---------+ | |
| | +------------+ | | | |
| 2A-+ +--2B | +- 2C | +- 2D +- 2E |
| | | | | | | | |
+------------+ | | | | | +---------+
+------------+ | | +--+ |
| | | | |
1A 1B -+ | 1C ---+
| | | || 1B to 2C elevator requires
| +----+ || the 391A pass card. General
0A-------------------+| Camede Rodgen is at 2C.
The following is a list of pass cards used in the game:
CARD WHERE IT CAN BE FOUND WHERE TO USE IT
CIB Given by Janai Meridian City
391A Ciberan base at 747,348
and Ariel City Ariel invasion base on Ciberan
174J Ciberan base at 747,348 Ariel City
942Z General Rodgen has it Damien Altron's secret base
845B Rouyn mining bases Rouyn main mining base
There are three abandoned Zero-L bases on Holbrook at 790,408, 1309,409,
and 1126,190. Visit them to grab some useful loot.