Cyberpunk


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Rating: 4.6/5 (38 votes)
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NoahCyberpunkFrom Argentina, Rey Gazu's Cyberpunk is a simple Flash puzzle game disguised as an arresting and involving hacking simulation. Armed with four programs and some intuition, you'll have to sneak into a remote computer guarded by obscure (and not-so-obscure) passwords, as well as by some nasty puzzles.

The game begins when a mysterious message instructs you to "access the overlord terminal and retrieve the datacore". You are faced with what appears to be a window on a computer desktop containing two icons, one for your local computer and one for a remote host, atlantis. Four other icons, your toolbox, are at the bottom of the screen. Begin by clicking the shell icon and connecting to atlantis. Figuring out how to log in is the first of many puzzles ahead.

Competition Runner-Up award winnerAnalysis: Compared to some of the other entries in the contest, Cyberpunk is actually a fairly inviting and forgiving game... at first. The interface should be intuitive for anyone at all familiar with DOS or UNIX and the goals are usually clear, with plenty of hints. Several amusing easter eggs invite exploration while demonstrating that, despite Cyberpunk's sterile exterior, Gazu is not without a sense of humor. I wonder if he was laughing when he designed the incredibly punishing Hex puzzle near the end of the game?

I found it interesting that, while very different, both runners up dealt with puzzles in the form of simulated computer interfaces. Cyberpunk eschews Thief's exotic and colorful machines for a more familiar, and more believable, command line that does a fine job of tying the game's two larger puzzles together. It's a shame that Cyberpunk ends so abruptly, and I hope that Gazu decides to continue adding more puzzles to his already excellent work.

JayJay: What I love best about Cyberpunk is that it seems a whole lot larger than it is. When dropped into the game at the very beginning with nothing but a command line at your disposal, the game gives the impression of being expansive and virtually limitless in possibilities. Closer examination, however, reveals that the commands available are few and quite logical to invoke. Yes, the game does favor anyone with even slight familiarity to DOS or Unix (cat being the Unix command to concatenate the contents of a file, in this case to standard output—the screen), and therefore it may be frustrating, or downright intimidating, to those with command line phobia. That being said, Cyberpunk can be completed with just a few well-placed commands and the solving of two (2) excellent puzzles, both of which require you to dig beneath the surface of what is happening on-screen relative to your actions. The presentation is gorgeous and the technical implementation exceptional. Cyberpunk is clearly one of the best puzzle games of this competition, even though it stretches the "simple puzzle game" idea virtually in all directions. ;)

JohnBJohn: Cyberpunk makes me feel cool. When I'm staring at the opening screen an entire world of possibilities lurks around the corner. With a few simple keystrokes I make things happen. Good things. Hacker-like things. Scanning for networks, cracking passwords, shuffling through file directories and causing computer crashes are only the beginning. The illusion of infinite possibilities is present, yet Cyberpunk follows a remarkably logical formula. So logical, in fact, the answer can sit right in front of you and you won't even realize it. Beyond the raw thrill of solving puzzles through a command line interface, Cyberpunk also features two visual puzzles that are forces to be reckoned with. With the excitement of discovery, the undeniably cool feeling of being a hacker, and lots of little surprises along the way, Cyberpunk is undoubtedly the most unique of our finalists. Now if you'll excuse me, I have to put on some really black sunglasses and get back to hacking...

Play Cyberpunk

104 Comments

when i click shell it opens a window that i can't close (which is very annoying) that says

"::telnet terminal::
::base commands::
help-connect - disconnect - >" and i can't do anything else, nothing has any affect. help?? first 3 seconds and i'm already bad at this.

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whoaaaa wait!

i can type in to connect to atlantis, and put in the username localhost (is this right?) but i don't know what the pw is...

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to close shell just enter quit

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Allegra - that connect command gives you a hint about who can access the site. The game also gives you the password.

It's written somewhere on the screen (but don't look too close it will jump out at you). ;)

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aagh, this game is already hard (even with the hint :) i guess i'm not cut out for this type of game... oh well, back to the escape the room games

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Ahh!
Same problems I have no idea! I fail to see the password :(

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Woah, done it.
I must say it was there right in front of me :) Password and User name is on the screen :D

Heres a small hint! Dont look if you dont want to!

Your login is NOT 'localhost'

Hope it helped :D

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What is the CD command for?

And where are these easter eggs? I've looked over and over, and can't find anything...

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o my god! this game is the shiz nads!!

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Well... I did see the

Mail001 and Mail002

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sarah_briarmoss September 2, 2006 7:42 PM

This game rocks! My favourite out of all the competition games.

For anyone who's stuck, or wants to cheat, here's the first few passwords...

The first computer:

Username for atlantis is

admin

Password for atlantis is

atlantis

The next step:

Type scan in a shell window in Atlantis find the next computer

User/pass for that computer (fallend is the name of the computer):

Username is:

admin

Pass is:

dothemario

The next step after that:

Turn wifi on:

Type 'services [space] wifi'

Reboot the computer:

Click the 'Nuke' button and click that computer


Then:

Scan for more computers by typing 'scan' in the shell window

Once you've done that:

A wifi router should appear next to the overlord computer.
To get in:

Use the 'wirez' tool from the wireless router on fallend to the overlord computer,and complete the challange.

The easiest way to complete the hex challange:

The squares are ordered like this:

 1 2 3 4

a

b

c

d

The colors you need and how to get them:

99ff00: a3 - b1 - b3 - c1 - d2

ffcc00: a3 - c3 - b3 - b1

3399ff: a3 - c1 - c3 - b2 - b4

Once you've done them, click to the colored pipe looking thing for that color

And tada, the game is done.

An awesome game, with an ending that leaves a possiblity of a sequel.

- Sarah

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foxinthesn0w September 2, 2006 8:13 PM

the other easter eggs that i've found so far apart from the sms' mentioned are some pictures on fallend.

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Hassle Free Author Profile Page September 2, 2006 8:25 PM

How do you connect to Fallend, I have connected to Atlantis, and scanned to find the rest of the computers, I also used netspy and figured out the crazy puzzle (2nd attempt) Please help, I don't know enough about computers to figure this out...

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Hassle Free - you connect to Fallend the same way as you did to Atlantis.

But you might want to disconnect from Atlantis first ;)

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Hassle Free Author Profile Page September 2, 2006 8:33 PM

oh duh, thanks Jay, I could not figure out for the life of me what

dothemario, meant, thought it had something to do with jumping

thanks again!

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so after i beat the hex puzzle nothing happend a box came up and said the system was vulnerable and nothing happened i still have no idea how to get in the last server....or am i not supposed

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sarah_briarmoss Author Profile Page September 2, 2006 11:02 PM

xx13xx, once you've finished the hex challange you get some little end game thing, and the game is over. I don't think you can get into the last server.

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Sarah, lovely walkthrough. Nice one :)

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pinguino_ann September 2, 2006 11:38 PM

I finished the colors puzzle, and it told me that the system was vulnerable. So I

logged into unikron with the username and password

admin; overlord

and now I can't figure out what to do. I think I'm supposed to retrieve some files... maybe change directories, but I'm not sure.

Any suggestions?

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pinguino_ann - are you sure you've logged into unikron successfully? What does the command line prompt say?

From my experience, unikron is only the wifi gateway to the overlord, and not a server that you connect with directly.

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pinguino_ann Author Profile Page September 3, 2006 12:11 AM

Well, I accidentally closed it out and had to start over, and I couldn't get back to where I *thought* I was. I guess I was just remembering incorrectly. Anywho, I finished it, so nevermind. Thanks!

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I have serious problem with this game, and I am not even talking about the graphics or the design of puzzles. It is the whole "hacking" idea itself. Thing is, I do not like hackers. In 80's hackers got this "rebelling against the government" image, you probably remember the idea from movies - hacking into some big corporations server through the modem and leaving proof of your visit in some secret hidden message just to prove your programming knowledge and never gaining anything beside the fame to your oh-so-very-cool nickname.

Now lets fast forward into current day when all the big companies have hired security experts and most ordinary people are connected to the web using broadband. It is obvious that hackers of our days do not target well protected government servers where attacking may send them quickly into jail, instead there are millions of non-protected personal computers and web pages available. Now I hate the idea of someone breaking into my house, looking through my personal items and leaving messages on my wallpaper. I hate when they do same thing by breaking into my computer or my web page. I seriously doubt anyone likes it.

Quote: "Good things. Hacker-like things. Scanning for networks, cracking passwords, shuffling through file directories and causing computer crashes."

Well, Noah, for your sake I hope you will not be target of such attack, your computer being hacked, all your personal information taken and sold for good money, your files being examined, your work destroyed and your computer ruined. The victim of the hacker hardly "feels cool" about it.

So for me, this game goes into same category with games about "bomb the arabs" and "kill the cops", no matter how well made, I still do not wish to play them.

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tony. i respect you immensely, for i find your games blindingly innovativa and superbly utilitarian.

But what is up with this moralising? Games are so popular exactly because they allow people to do things they couldnt/wouldnt do in normal life. For example i would NEVER EVER step thru the flaming arc portal the way half life protagonist does, i would NEVER mow down pedestrians and cows the way the Max Damage in Carmageddon does. The examples are endless.

And moralising on games, especially as innocent and as good as this is pointless.

On the lighter note, can anything be done at the unikron server or is the game over after you solve the hex puzzle? I wish we could get Rey Gazu in here to explain things a bit...

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On a sidenote, jay, the gotmail website says One Off R is coming out later this month.

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I really liked the two puzzles in cyberpunk, they are both very original and could both have been a proper submission for a causal game just by themselves.

I also want to congratulate the astounding creativity provoked from this contest, and think its a total-super-mega-overdrive-fantastic-superb thing!

I agree however on tonypa that ethical background regarding cyberpunk is a bit questionworthy at least, and disagree with nCn that games have no ethical limits, so you can do virtually what the society wouldn't allow you to do. Just think for example of a now thought up game called "child-porno-tycoon", I think most will agree that such a thing would be very unwanted. There are definitly limits.

Take for example legos spybot also featured on jayisgames. It is set into the same environment, its really one of my very all-time-favorites, but in core has nothing to do with computer hacking. Cyberpunk on the other hand is for me a bit tooo realistic on hacking (altough even the shell is still rather unrealistic) and especially promoting hacking, browsing through other peoples files and all that as to be super and cool is a very questionworthy value. Also note that in spybot you primary task is to stop another evil hacker, while in cyberpunk you are the evil hacker yourself. Just a note, there are social scientist that claim some issue wars are today fighten totally different than e.g. Worldwar I is not only influenced by new weapon machinery, but also by first person shooters, as the repression to shoot even foes has proofingly sunken the last decades. Isn't there even a FPS sponsored by the US army? WWI was a static warfare, where often nothing happend. Also take for example which impact September 11 had on gaming, since then every x-th game on newsground (luckely and notably not so here!) was set on, "kill the terrorists", not a single one was there "go find and lift the culture differences and reasons behind terrorism". I don't want to start a huge discussion here but just to say eventually:

society has a strong impact on how games are set and which values they transport, but also the other way around also games take their (maybe small) part in mainting but also influencing society and their values.

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Hiya, have just completed thanks to the walkthrough. Needed help to turn the wifi on, and also with the hex puzzle.
Did the rest on my own :)

But, can someone explain the hex puzzle to me - cause without the walkthrough I'd never have got it?

I understand that the nubers displayed in the 'pipes' are their colours (in HTML?) but how did you know how to make them and what did the plus and minus signs all mean?

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sorry, ignore me. I had never clicked on the green dot.

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There is much to learn from the games that we play, even the ones on the fringe of moral and ethical principles. Games are entertainment, games are play. Play is another word for "pretend", a word that children use to describe their behavior when acting-out real-world and adult situations. Children pretend so they can learn about these behaviors and situations and the issues that surround them. Pretending is healthy and it feeds our imagination with information that we can use to understand our world more completely.

We read books. Books are often written as fictional stories about characters, issues and events that are not real. Fiction is a story that pretends to be real. Books stimulate our imagination and take us to places we can only dream of going, or places we would never dream of going. From these books we can learn about ourselves and understand the issues of our world more completely.

Cyberpunk is not a new concept for there have been many books written on the subject of hacking and the subculture of those that hack. So many there is even a sub-genre of science-fiction called "cyberpunk" that deals with similar issues and the social and ethical ramifications surrounding them.

So let us keep the books and the games that facilitate our exploration of these topics in context, and not make them out to be anything more than they are: fiction with which to pretend.

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foxinthesn0w September 3, 2006 11:59 AM

did anyone notice on fallend that it's leny (that's how he's spelled it) and carl that are emailing each other? like the simpsons characters

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Just want to add, that this should not be understood simply 1:1. Basing on Athony Giddens Strucutalism, also games as fiction transport values as hidden agenda. While star trek e.g. pretends a lot on fiction, it also transports social values. Most little puzzles e.g. transport the "you win if your smart" paradigm, often this is so self-evident we don't recognize it. Highscores transport our modern values of competition (as counter example there exist some native society where equality is so important value, that a game they play, similar to our soccer always lasts as long until both team have equal score) Other games transport like the lucas arts games transport e.g. a "just-have-fun-performance-doesn't-matter-that-much" paradigm. and so on.

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blahblahblah September 3, 2006 12:32 PM

Isn't this game similar in design (interface and concept at least) to Uplink: Hacker Elite?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Uplink_(computer_game)

Also I think Grid means Gidden's theory of structuration not structuralism, though I'm not sure how relevant it is here - it's a framework for analyzing social system phenomena, not really for media work critique

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blah - Although I have never played Uplink, I think I will be playing that one soon after reading the source you referenced. It sounds like a remarkable game. And indeed, Cyberpunk shares many similarities to it, though in a much simpler context.

(*note to self: get Uplink and plan a review for Casual Gameplay.)

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There is of course pure fiction which is clearly different from real life, no I do not find flaming portals around my house either. Sadly, hacking is happening every day (look at the log of your firewall to see how many intrusion attempts are being blocked every day) and the way this game is made, one may find it believable enough. I doubt the hackers actually use DOS prompt these days, but the interface looks like real DOS/UNIX, at least to me. You could argue that Thief game is also about stealing and should create similar reaction. However, the puzzles appearing in Thief were clearly not anything one would see in real world. And the secret you received at the end turned out to be joke.

It is easy to justify bad things in games, books or movies - your country is in need, your children were kidnapped, you are madman, these are all commonly used so the following pointless violence or breaking any kind of law will be accepted. None of those are used in the Cyberpunk, we could of course imagine that something has happened, but there is nothing indicating it. If the game would actually deal with "social and ethical ramifications" (whatever those monsters are), I could accept the idea, I could find it interesting to look into soul of hacker and try to understand the poor bastard. Currently, there is not story, there is no reason, you just hack.

What really disturbs me is the tone of review. The review is clearly assuming that hacking itself (not in the game, but in real life) is something "undeniably cool". Lets say you review game about driving over people. Of course you know it is something you would not do yourself in reality, so it is all harmless fun: "With a few simple keystrokes I make things happen. Good things. Driving-over-people-like things. Crashing the bones, splashing blood, dragging the bodies behind my car and laughing at the families of the victim are only the beginning." And then assume it is still considered pure fiction and it never happens is real life? Well, people are being killed by cardrivers every day. If your family would of been killed by drunk maniac on the wheels, would you still find the game amusing and interesting fiction?

The books are not just printed words, the movies are not bunch of pictures. And exactly same way, games are not just innocent fun.

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blahblahblah, you are right.

About the fiction stuff in general, take germanies Schillers "The Sorrows of Young Werther". Altough its pure fiction, and many read the book for amusment there has been a significant raise of suicides around the time the book was first published and popular, especially in the area of soldiers. Werther was a soldier, and he enden in suicide as "solution". Taken from wikipedia: "Supposedly more than 2,000 readers committed suicide after reading this book at the time" - "copycat suicide".

Altough this has absolute nothing to do with cyberpunk :)! just wanted to show that generally fiction can have effects!! Just remembered an issue with games, didn't once also a child die because a group of kids replayed moves from the "streetfighter" game? E.g. I really would have a problem with a game where the main character would have to commite suicide in the end, who knows how many copycat suicides it would take (mostly depending on popularity)

I don't want to overdramatise, really cyberpunk is still "mostly harmless". I also thought about this issue when played it the first time, but didn't find it worth to post, since in all the contest has provided great creativity and don't want to be the moaner. Interestingly with "spybot" altough similar enviroment, I didn't feel the same way, because it was just far more fictional to "real hacking". But since tonypa posted it, I just want to say: You weren't alone when seeing this a bit sceptical!

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While I cannot speak for John and his views on hacking, I can say that there is indeed something brewing in Cyberpunk's game world, revealed in one of the sms messages, that could "blow the world." But, as player, we are not given enough information regarding the relative morality of our actions. Maybe it's to save the world? Maybe it's to destroy the world? Does it really matter?

I appreciate and respect where you're coming from on this, Tonypa. But if games/movies/books were to tread only on subjects that are acceptable to everyone, it is quite likely no one would be entertained at all. (Is it even possible?)

It is ultimately a choice whether to read a book, watch a movie, play a game. If the subject matter gets you to think about the issues surrounding the moral and ethical implications, all the better, IMHO.

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Hey folks! I apologize if my comments on Cyberpunk in the above review gave the impression I think real life hacking is "cool". To me, Cyberpunk evokes the popular image of hackers portrayed in Hollywood films: dark sunglasses and black trenchcoat wearing folk who belong on the Matrix. The skeleton story might as well be out of a movie: "Get into the Overlord computer, retrieve the data core. I'm being traced."

Real-life hackers certainly do more harm than good, but I believe Cyberpunk is playing on the image of it all, not the reality. The only "hacking" you do is guessing passwords (unless you have to solve a hex puzzle to access networks nowadays), and no one needs a game to remind them they can do that.

I agree with Jay in that the game is fiction and bears only a slight resemblance to real life. I would never say a similar thing about a violent game where you kill people. The reason is because that mirrors real life much more directly. Cyberpunk does not. People are killed by cars, but no one is harmed by solving hex puzzles.

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The sms messages shows only up later in the game, in the beginning the "main character" starts hacking just for the fun of it. (therefore the copycat stuff)

Maybe one last thing to sum it up:
Regardless of copycat actions (as e.g. suicides) where main charcters show paths to be socially acceptable solutions, age fit (cleary not everything is suitable for every age) I have one thing that really stands an issue for all games and future games and clearly crosses the borders of "fictional entertainment".

* It's giving ingame instructions that can also be used to do "uncool" things in real life. Like a game where you have for example to build a pipe bomb to kill your "evil nemises", however the building instructions are so exact you could just as well build a real one. Giving functional instructions for chemical explosions with supermarket stock, even when used in game just fictionally. And this goes as well as giving instructions how to hack, how to guess bad passwords, etc. Cyberpunk is well not really near the border or even over the edge, as it is still quite "unreal", but it sees on the horizont a border to hacking instructions... Movies for example often miss one critical part when e.g. building bombs (see MacGyver :) so it will not work when copyied.
Thats maybe the issue some have with this, while having no issue e.g. with spybot which virtually is set in the same atmosphere but has totally different gameplay.

Okay that was it for me, I think there is not much more to say. I realize that similar "issues" go for the crime thriller as well, altough generally acceptet. I once saw an interview with a historican who said before the criminal thriller became popular the police had it much easier, as e.g. most of the population didn't even know about fingerprints...

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>"The sms messages shows only up later in the game, in the beginning the "main character" starts hacking just for the fun of it."

I disagree.

In the very beginning of the game the player receives this mandate: "Access the overlord terminal and retrieve the datacore. There is no time... I am traced."

Hacking for the fun of it does not seem to apply here; the player is following a directive.

Whether this directive is for the moral good of the game world society is unknown. But I would argue that even if later in the game it were revealed that the player is on the wrong side of the law, that would not put this game outside the limits of what is acceptable.

Take for instance the previously reviewed Thief (spoiler warning: plot details follow): one of the reasons that game was so successful was due to the fact that the player realizes in the end that she is, in fact, the very same thief the author is writing about in his journal. This climactic twist to the story ties everything together and makes the whole greater than the sum of its parts.

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Whoa whoa whoa, before you guys continue your ethical debate, perhaps it'd be wise to first understand the definition of 'hacker.' It is perfectly acceptable in the computer field to hack without being malicious. When you are creating something by going outside-the-box, that is considered hacking.

Read up on the controversy over the definition of a 'hacker,' and you'll see that it's an on-going thing, and rather pointless to argue over, as each person has a different interpretation of the term when it's used.

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Huh, didn't know the URL links to my username. For clearity, here's the link:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hacker_definition_controversy

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@yehman. I know some groups try to emphasize differences between "cracker" and "hacker". So please if thats the issue:

s/hacker/cracker/g

for the discussion above. It doesn't matter how you call the baby. And I don't see much of the difference between hackers and crackers. Maybe the ethical hacker does not break a thing, but provides "scripts" to make proof-of-concepts, than you have the script-kiddies that without much technical knowledge use this scripts to break things.

Maybe to emphasize I don't really have that much an issue with cyberpunk and enjoyed it self, but I do have an issue with an "anything goes" attitute that was contested with on the otherside of tonypa. As there are limits.

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I guess this discussion boils down to the image of who and what is hacker to you. For you they may wear dark sunglasses and black trenchcoat, fighting against evil corporation and liberating the world from secretly developed plan to slave all people. For me the hackers are problem of my life, they attack my computer every day, they attack my web site, they attack highscores of my games. So it is not some sort of fictional hero you are imaging, it is direct threat and great nuisance for me.

I am aware that such games have been made before and you could find much worse examples from NG. That is why I do not visit NG, I come to JIG (and of course because NG is full of pop-ups and ads).

As it was prized in the puzzle game competition, did you like the game because of its puzzles or because of its hacker theme? If it would of been same puzzles without the hacker theme, would you still have found it similarly good? I get the feeling that you did like it more because of the hacker theme and that is what worries me. It means that you do not think hackers are real problem, that they do not in reality gain access into your computer and steal your personal information. Its scary. It means you continue to spread the same skewed image from Hollywood movies.

Has JIG been hacked? Try to imagine if it will be, how would you feel about it? Imagine the work you have been done for years being destroyed or your personal notes and pictures being posted all over the web. Would you still praise the game about hacking? Would hacking still be cool to you?

For you this game is fiction, for me it is reality. You find it fun, I find it scary.

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the walkthrugh dosent work i type in i type in connect then admin but it dosen work

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Yes, I have had a website hacked before.
No, it doesn't change my feelings about this game.

And it is not a question of either the puzzles or the hacking theme in terms of scoring this game. As in Thief mentioned before, the entire experience lifted this game above the others.

...an experience I can appreciate is not your 'cup of tea'. ;)

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Uplink was created by the same people who made Darwinia. *hint hint*

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o.0 woah... I`m seriously stuck here... first 3 mins. and I`m glued to this game even though i havent done anything.

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Looks like I'm a little late to this party...

Tonypa: First of all, let me just make clear that I didn't write the things that you have quoted me as saying. The review is written in several parts; Jay and John contributed as well, and while both can (and have) defended themselves, I might as well add my thoughts.

It seems you feel that a less ambiguous motive for the player would make the game easier to swallow. Fair enough. Still, as you mentioned, Thief is literally about

stealing trade secrets from a competitor, and I believe that becomes clear to most players well before the end of the game.

Is it Thief's less believable atmosphere that makes it acceptable? For me at least, it was the successful atmosphere of Cyberpunk that caused me to rate it highly in the first place.

Anyway, to each his own, and I completely understand that you might find Cyberpunk tasteless, considering your painful real life experiences with hackers. Still, I don't think anyone should feel guilty about appreciating this game, or feel scared that others do.

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hmm.... just call me a noob. or a window guy.
I did everything but I still cannot get a login screen yet.
Any one to help me escape from the windows world?
hmm... "escape from the windows world" sounds like a title of a game to be made....

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Did you click the "Shell" icon in the lower left?
Have you tried to connect to atlantis?
If you have done both of those things, you should be prompted for a username and password.

Did that help?

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A bug: While playing, I opened three image files (on the third available machine, I think). Somehow one positioned itself too high, making the close-window button inaccessible. I had to restart the entire game because half the screen was obscured.

(Also, regarding a comment above about "The Sorrows of Young Werther," it was written by Goethe, not Schiller.)

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noah, I am sorry for pointing you as the author of the quote. My bad mistake :(

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So tonypa, based on your own experience with "hackers" you decided that all hacking is bad and that most, if not all "hackers" are morally deviant.

And while I'm sure that some portion of "hackers" certainly are out there to do harm on unsuspecting peers PCs, i'm sure that the majority of them are out there just out of curiosity and fun.

Using your line of thinking some Jews might say that all doctors are evil (because of what dr. Mengel and his staff did), or that all soldiers are brutal killers (because of what US soldiers did in Vietnam), or that all politicians are crooks AND liars (based on what Nixon, and hella lot other diplomats did), ...

That line of thinking is IMO just wrong. People are people, some are good- some are bad, and I wouldnt hate a morally corrupt hacker any more than a corrupt stock broker.

All in all, this is a GAME. So PLEASE. leave the moralising out of the discussion.

...Besides, I dont even have a firewall. And i get by just fine.

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I used the spoilers so I know what the Atlantis password is. Still I don't get it. Exactly where on the screen it should "jump out at you" like Jay wrote?

Only place that I can see

the corresponding text is under Atlantis server icon on localhost window, which also can be seen through SHELL window.

So if that is the hint then I have never seen nothing as stupid as that except the password used at the gates of Moria in Lord of the Rings.

I would expect that I could use Netspy on Atlantis server and then find the password for Fallend by reading some email on Atlantis. That would have been logical. But okay, maybe the thing is to be illogical.

Then the help system is not quite helpful. There's 'CONNECT <server>' but why there are no 'CAT <file name>', CD <directory name> or 'SERVICES <service name>'? Moreover, 'SERVICES' works only in one case out of many. How could user expect that anything happen after one or two trials and reading a notice: 'Service not found or protected'? I thought that this command just don't have any use.

The nice thing on the other hand is that you are given a chance of "hacking" into Rey's own public Web resources. There are some funny pictures at Outlands and Fotolog servers (real servers;)

I also came to conlcusion that the URL to Outlands is
only one of those easter eggs. It's a pitty since it could have been used as a hint for finding passwords.

So the game looked a bit incomplite to me although the NETSPY and WIRE puzzles were very good and devilishly tough. I also enjoyed playing the role of a hacker.

After reading the debate I would just say that of course there are and should be some limits on what you can or can't present in media, games, movies and literature. The national laws are the final playground for defining those limits. I think that this game is far from those limits. But on the other hand people should also have their freedom of speach to say what they think about those limits. Thank you Tonypa for bringing up this lively conversation :)

Then there are also morals and manners which are defined through social practices. By having this very debate we define those moral codes. The story line behind Cyberpunk is not far from Tag Der Arbeit game reviewed also here at JIG. There Jay has written very nice review about that game and he gives also some interesting background so that the gamer could better understand why the hooligan is the hero in that game.

So I think that all we can do is to let the reviewers define the main moral codes for JIG. Jay as a chief editor should carry the resposibility (which he does nicely). We as a readers and commentors have the freedom to express our feelings AND/OR to go somewnere else if we don't like the games selected and reviews written by editors. I think that this debate has been very nice and informative. This is good feedback for reviewers, which they can take into account if they like. By doing that they just select their audience.

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Sorry for the obscure lines about commands in my previous posting. I forgot that I can't use arrow tags anywhere I like. The point was that sometimes when you write HELP you see 'CONNECT server', where the server is between arrows. That indiccates quite clearly what you should write after CONNECT. The same is not given for other corresponding commands and therefore people like me don't immediately understand the commands like CAT and SERVICES.

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Amor Lassie, I can only 2nd that! Nicely said!

Oh yes, its Goethe not Schiller, that wrote "Die Leiden des jungen Werthers", how embarrassing for me...

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Cheers, Amor Lassie! Well said, and a good point about the help system in the game. (By the way, I fixed the angle brackets in your previous comment. For future reference, use HTML entities or ISO Latin-1 codes to show special characters that may have other meanings in HTML or that cannot be generated using normal keyboard commands).

And I'm sorry the experience was a frustrating one for you. =/

And I haven't forgotten about the preview comment bug. I'm working on fixing that one (again!) today. Ugh.

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after the hex puzzle, is that it? am i finished? no windows popped up or amything...

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Uplink was exactly what I was thinking when I saw this, I think it's a much better game, but I haven't really gotten too far into this. I think uplink is great.

When I type "help", nothing happens, the command isn't recognized. Why?

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let me tell you all a secret

it's just a game!

And a good one.

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still cant get the ending

u complete the hex puzzle
uv hacked into overlord but what havent u done. CONNECTED
disconnect unikron then 'connect overlord' and ur done

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On the last puzzle it took me a while to figure out from the hints

when they said click a3 etc that they were talking about clicking one button. I kept clicking two: a and then 3 and getting these random lines all over the place.

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The easiest way to complete the hex challange:

The squares are ordered like this:
1 2 3 4
a
b
c
d
The colors you need and how to get them:
99ff00: a3 - b1 - b3 - c1 - d2
ffcc00: a3 - c3 - b3 - b1
3399ff: a3 - c1 - c3 - b2 - b4

Why? Why do you do this? What's the logic of it?

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Franco - it's called a "hex" puzzle because...

it involves addition in hexadecimal (base 16). The object of the puzzle is to match the target numbers on the right by clicking on a sequence of nodes that add or subtract from the current value. To see your current value, click on the small green dot in the lower left.

The current value is made up of 3 pairs of values, one pair each for Red, Green and Blue.

Representing RGB color as hexidecimal is a very common concept in Web graphics, and you can read about it on Wikipedia.

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sarah_briarmoss Author Profile Page September 6, 2006 5:49 AM

Back up to the debate going on at the top, I have to disagree with all the 'this is hacking, this is bad' stuff.

I'm a hacker, yes. I'm not a 'black hat' hacker, or a cracker. I don't go around destroying things. I know that the media calls all hackers 'bad' and 'evil', but us 'good' hackers really want to stop that.

A bit more about the hex puzzle..

With the whole a3 b2 thing, I'll explain it more clearly.
More a hint than a spoiler.

You have a grid of box things, right?
I call them
1 2 3 4
a
b
c
d
so it ends up looking like this
a1 a2 a3 a4
b1 b2 b3 b4
c1 c2 c3 c4
d1 d2 d3 d4

The hexidecimal colors that you need are

99ff00,
ffcc00,
3399ff.

You make them like this

99ff00:

a3 - b1 - b3 - c1 - d2

ffcc00:

a3 - c3 - b3 - b1

3399ff:

a3 - c1 - c3 - b2 - b4

Hope that helped explain it all a little more.

- Sarah

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Ummm are you kidding me.

ITS a GAME, stop trying to turn it into something its not. Its a puzzle and a very good one at that. And really none of those commands would help you crack or hack anything.

Thanks for the hex solution i'd have never clicked that green dot without your help.

Oh and for those that were wondering you can log into the overlord but you have to do it directly from the local host once the firewall is down.

You get a nice little message and the game ends.

N1 dude i loved it, made it to the 3rd computer in 10mins but the hex puzzle really had be beat :)

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I still don't get the hex thing. How does:

99ff00 = a3 - b1 - b3 - c1 - d2?

how does one translate into the other?

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Still don't get the hex thing. How does a3 + b1 + b3 + c1 + d2 = 99ff00? 163 + 177 + 179 + 193 + 210 != 10092288 (where != is 'doesn't equal' if that's not clear). It equals 922, which is 39A in hex. This makes no sense to me.

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N@ - the references of "a3", "b1", etc. refer to column and row identifiers for the square blocks of the puzzle, not hex numbers themselves.

The notation is used so you can know which of the blocks to click on.

Each of those square blocks contains a hex triplet that is added (or subtracted) from your base triplet represented by the small green dot in the lower left. If you don't understand hex triplets, read the Wikipedia article referenced above.

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Ok, so the diagonal (+ - =) symbols either increase or subtract each hex triplet individually? I thought they had something to do with what direction the connection came from. I still haven't figured out how to figure the path myself, but at least I understand the principle now (so I can stop pulling my hair out).

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Yes, correct.

If the block is labeled "+ - =" then the (R)ed component will be added, the (G)reen component will be subtracted, and the (B)lue component will not change.

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Ffirebranderz September 8, 2006 9:35 AM

hey those of you who have a problem wih this game ought to think about the possibilities that " if this game didnt exist what would the people who are interested in hacking be doing right now?

i am one of these people i love dos! i made so many games with the program (give me dos anyday instead of the programs we got now) it was one of the 1st computer things i learnt
unlike many people i was given a comadore 16 by my aunt at the age of 6 mastered it and was then given a comadore 63 which bored me, my perents thought it a good idea to give me an amstrad computer with built in mega drive this also bored me as i spent most of my time searching through dos examinin it and having fun with my games

im not a computer geak as some ppl like to call them, neither do i spend even 1hour playing a game on the ps2 or Xbox they bore me to quickly, fighting games ough really? all it is is just point and click once you've got the hang of it, and 2d games theres no thinking about it like sonic now on ps2
my best mate spent 14hours completeing it WHY? what was the point all it was was sonic speeding through the zones collecting rings and perhaps encountering the boss

i am a musicain things have to make sence things have to be challenging otherwise there's no point

what you guys (who are disagreeing to hacking) are missing is that
its not about hacking is about understanding

understanding how things work thats what this game is about, for if you dont understand how to get into a computer how can you stop things from getting into yours?
it doesnt teach you to hack as it gives no reason to its an interesting game and those who have played it have a bit of a hackers mind but it doesnt make you want to hack the state?does it? or the parlaments computers does it?

my main point is that if there were more games out there like this one I personally would definatley play it, it kept my attention, made me think, and i enjoyed the computer screen of dos being that if you dont type in the right command you aint getting nowhere.

For those of you out there who disagree with me think about this :-

hackers are going to hack,
whether or not you want them to,
become like minded to stop them,
games like this attract EVERYONE
so enjoy it as what its supposed to be,
a game,

if someone is given a gun its up to them how to use it, you can't control what that person is going to do, but you can learn about their gun, and use the disadvantages as you advantage,

sometimes ppl who get offended dont think properly, this conserns most of the population given different situations even me, so why use this game as a reason for your hate against hackers?

their going to do it with or without this game

and if your thinking that this game encorages them then yes your probably right BUT think of this they would probably have done it anyway with or without this game, not only that but what about the film HACKERS? doesnt that do the same thing ? even more so? if you think not i suggest you watch it and learn some more.

loved the game and i'd love some more like it think its great keep it going lv smileXXX

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It took awhile, but I finally got the ending, thanks all for the tips and so on.

I only vaguely looked over the discussion about hackers going on, but I have a question that I wonder if anybody mentioned.

It seems a lot of people are assuming that you are set about on the task to break into the overlord server. And while it was mentioned not all hacking is malicious, this act of trying to break into overlord is seen as such. But what if that's not the case? What if the mysterious message to get to overlord is from the overlord itself? Wanting you to follow and find the clues it has left behind to make it to its server? Just a thought I had when I saw the ending animation, and for all I know, someone already suggested that idea, so sorry if restated a previous arguement.

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how do you use the netspy? help!!!

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I can't seem to find the easter eggs...

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Littleghost December 11, 2006 9:14 PM

When I connect to

Unikron, I get the message "Unikron Military Server." and then a request for login, but none of the previous techniques work. What am I missing?

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Littleghost December 11, 2006 11:49 PM

When I connect to

Unikron, I get the message "Unikron Military Server." and then a request for login, but none of the previous techniques work. What am I missing?

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to finish game once the router thing is next to overlord pc, disconnect do that it says disconnected from host then type in 'connect overlord' and the screen shud go black and some writing come up.

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how do you get the unikro or whatever computer alive

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first of all this game has nothing related to hacking... its just a simple simulation based on guessing... anyhow the last hex part is kewl... had fun;)

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I didn't log into Unikron. Just overload. Then it ended.
...Or at least from what I remember.

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charybdiscylla August 8, 2007 3:47 PM

Can some please help, I go into the game, press "shell" and then type in "connect". What do i do next???

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Not one single person has even tried to explain NetSpy... what are you supposed to do at the NetSpy screen? I've got red lights on black things, the light turns green if I enclose it within the polygon whose vertices I control. The eyes trace me however... I've tried lighting up all the lights quickly as well as tried lighting them up without the eyes, but it's impossible. I even tried getting only the eyes, but that doesn't work. The NetSpy tool is horribly unintuitive. :/

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Sion: You have to

drag the circles around so that all the red lights turn green, without going over the eyes.

I'm stuck at fallend, I know i can use

wifi,

but it says I have to

reboot, and when I try to reboot it says reboot is disabled.

And about the hacking controversy... games are just that, games. They're for things people could never do in real life... like fighting zombies or saving the world and what not. Some people may want to be hackers, and this game lets them do just that, without actually harming or disrupting anyone's work.

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can somebody PLEASE post a spoiler for the netspy puzzle.
I got it once but nothing happened and i cant seem to do it again

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Hi alex, what sort of spoiler do you need?

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Hey everyone I just discovered this great game. I don't know if anyone is even paying attention to this comment thread anymore, since the last post was in sept. BUT...

Here's a simple easter egg that I don't think anyone has mentioned,

When you successfully login to the atlantis system at the beginning and you use the VER command to find out the version of the telnet server, the server version reads out as:

Squeenix telnet server v23

Now I don't know how many of you have a history with console JRPGs, big names like Final Fantasy or Secret/Legend of Mana or Chrono Tigger/Cross and the like but those games were all made by SquareSoft. Enix was another big JRPG producer back in the day famous for the Dragon Quest series. They've now become one big company called Square-Enix.

I'm pretty sure this "easter-egg" is a reference to this company and thus their games. GREAT games I might add. :)

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OK, walkthrough time!

Your first step is to connect to Atlantis. Access the "shell" icon and pay attention. Only admins can access it, so the username is

admin

and the password is

Can you find it? It's on the screen...

One last shot before you spoil it...

atlantis

Next is to scan for other networks. Type help to get a list of things that you can do. Then type

I said it before...

scan.

Two new networks appear

Overlord (your objective network) and Fallend

Disconnect from Atlantis (Type disconnect, dummy!) Now you get to use the Netspy icon. Use it on the Fallend server.

The objective is to use the blue areas inbetween the dots to turn all of the red lights to green without filling up the trace meter by unveiling eyes.

Use what you got from that to connect to Fallend

Again, the username is

admin

Now, type Services in to veiw the services offered.

Look for Wifi and then type Services Wifi.

Next, you have to reboot the system, so use Nuke on Fallend, and the Wifi router will appear.

Login to Fallend again, and scan to find the other router.

Now use the Wire3 icon on the other router to get a puzzle

Here's a good explanation:

You have a grid of box things, right? I call them

1 2 3 4

a

b

c

d


so it ends up looking like this

a1 a2 a3 a4

b1 b2 b3 b4

c1 c2 c3 c4

d1 d2 d3 d4


You make them like this
99ff00:

a3 - b1 - b3 - c1 - d2

ffcc00:

a3 - c3 - b3 - b1

3399ff:

a3 - c1 - c3 - b2 - b4

Cheers to sarah_briarmoss for the explanation!

Disconnect from Fallend, and connect to Overlord

That's it! To be continued...

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Jay, could you fix my walkthrough to look like this for the chart?

1 2 3 4
A
B
C
D

So it should look like this:

A1 A2 A3 A4
B1 B2 B3 B4
C1 C2 C3 C4
D1 D2 D3 D4

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I need help badly. I used netspy on fallend and i got all of the things to light up green. What do i do now? I am very confused. Please help me.

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blacksails February 19, 2008 2:23 AM

i got to the unikron military server but do not know what the user and pass are for it anyhelp from anyone

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You're not supposed to connect to Unikron. You need to enter "connect overlord", not "connect unikron"

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I recently read my dad's (fairly old) book, called Cyberpunk. Oddly enough, it was about "outlaws and hackers on the computer frontier" (quote from the book). Mysterious!

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Gelatina1996 November 25, 2008 8:45 PM

Does anyone know

how to connect to Unikron?

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You can't connect to Unikron? ^_^

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Uplink already mentioned. But I say it again. This game looks like Uplink.
Looking forward to see Uplink review at jayisgames.

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The chosen gamer February 17, 2009 9:21 PM

What do you do after doing one hex line?
I already did a3 b1b3c1d2 nothing pops up? do i just close it and do it again?

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what are the command for the shell? I login into atlantis but what can i do now?

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joeynow Author Profile Page May 24, 2009 8:11 PM

On the merits of hacking and its worthiness as a game subject:

How many of you have seen these sorts of comments about first-person shooters or fighting games? How many of you play shooters and fighters?

What, do we value computers more than lives?

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joeynow Author Profile Page May 24, 2009 8:14 PM

Ok, I didn't actually discuss the real-world merits and demerits of hacking. Mostly because I don't know enough about it. But as a game, that's another story.

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ok, i can't enter my login or password into atlantis, if i type in CONNECT and then type in admin, it says that admin was not found on local server. Any suggestions?

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TheMusicGirl Author Profile Page October 26, 2009 1:00 AM

the pass for fallend...how on earth could anyone get that without a walkthrough?!

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TheMusicGirl in order to get the password for the fallend computer you have to

use the netspy and connect all the thingies that look like web-cams to me without being detected. Once you manage to get all green lights, a message will appear and if you wait a few seconds it gives you the password

I wanted to log in the unikron but i have no idea on how to get the password? is it even possible to log on to it?

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@tonypa: You are thinking of "crackers". Hackers are those who like to fiddle around, mostly with their own computers. Most hackers would never break in to a computer.

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i think you all might need this image at some point
Screenshot

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