Key & Compass presents:
Offensive Probing
by Ben Croshaw

Offensive Probing is a Z-machine version 5 text adventure game written with Inform 6 and is © 1999 by Ben Croshaw. Note that although the subtitle of the game is "Chapter One: The Incident", to the best of my knowledge, no subsequent chapters were ever released.

You play as Martin McSondheim, a new graduate of the Space Federation living in a cheap apartment on Triton. You've just received your first assignment on the SFS Connery, a scout ship surveying the Federation borders. Congratulations, Ensign!

This solution is by David Welbourn, and is based on Release 1 of the game.


Map 1: Reporting for Duty

push button TheBridge Yourquarters Corridoron theConnery Interior ofteleportationbooth TeleportRoom Teleport-ationCentre SouffleStreet MistyStreet Hallway inapartmentblock Yourapartment get on bed put keycard in slot

Map 2: Responding to a Crisis

Ventilationshafts Gantry Ventilationshafts CargoBay Ventilationshafts TheBridge Corridor Interiorof lift Void Bottom ofcoolantshaft Corridor Corridor Medicalunit Corridor Engineer-ing Engineer-ing Engineer-ing Engineer-ing Backupgenerator openpanel pushbutton u push engineering open vent d push button pushbridge (wait)


Your apartment

> x mailbox. open it. take envelope. x it.

> open it. take letter. (+5)

> read letter. take comb. x it.

> open dresser. x bed. x tv.

> w.

Hallway in apartment block

> x can. take it. n.

Misty Street

CAUTION: Going north or east can be fatal.

> w.

Souffle Street

CAUTION: Going north or south can be fatal.

> take issue. read it. w.

Teleportation Centre

> x capsule. x desk. give letter to official. (+10)

> n.

Interior of teleportation booth

> x button. x window. push button. (+5)

Teleport room

> x captain. ask captain about me. (+10)

Your attempt at conversation is ignored. The captain welcomes you aboard, gives you a keycard, and suggests recuperating in your quarters, then he leaves.

> x porthole. x keycard. x panel. x podium.

> e. n.

Corridor on the Connery

> x door. x panel. put keycard in slot.

Your quarters

> x bed. x tableorx chair.

> drop all. (You don't need any of this stuff later.)

> save. get on bed. (+15)

Your first few days are uneventful. That doesn't last.

The Bridge

> take matches. x matches. (The console beeps.)

> x console. x stephen. ask stephen about stephen. (Another blip.)

> ask stephen about captain. ask stephen about me.

> x viewscreen. (Red light flashing.)

> ask stephen about red light. (+10)

Something's wrong as all the controls stop working and the lights go out.


Caution: There's only one match. Don't waste time. Get into the vent before the match burns out.

> open matches. light match. (Hear creatures skitter away.)

The Bridge

The south door doesn't work and the match's light won't last forever.

> ask stephen about ship. (He orders you to go to engineering.)

> get on chair. open vent. (+5)

Ventilation shafts (three locations)

The vents have emergency lighting! Why doesn't the bridge have emergency lighting?

> n. n.

> x matches. open it. drop book. (No more matches)

> open panel. (+5)


> x panel. x crane. x button. d.

Cargo bay

> x torch. take it. x crate.

> push crate. u.


> push button. (+5. The crane picks up the crate.)

> push button. (+10. The crate smashes through the platform.)

You fall, but manage to grab a ladder on the side of the shaft.


CAUTION: The torch has a very limited amount of power, so we can't waste time examining everything.

> save. turn on torch.

Bottom of coolant shaft

> e.

Corridor (near storeroom)

> e.

Corridor (near engineering)

The east door is locked. The panel is a touch lock.

> s.

Engineering (northwest corner)

> s.

Engineering (southwest corner)

Frotz is here, but unconscious. Keep moving.

> e.

Engineering (southeast corner)

> take hand. n.

Engineering (northeast corner)

Source of the explosion.

> w. n.

Corridor (near engineering)

> put hand on panel. (+10)

Medical unit

Ignore the report. The syringe contains a stimulant.

> take bottle. open cabinet. take syringe. x it.

> w. s. s.

Engineering (southwest corner)

A bit of guess-the-verb here; the game doesn't know "inject".

> give syringe to frotz. (+10)

Frotz tells you there was a warp core breach, gives you a glowing rock with which to start the backup generator, then leaves for the bridge.

> x rock. e. s.

Backup generator

> open compartment. put rock in it.

> close compartment. push button. (+10. Emergency lighting is now on.)

> turn off torch. n.

Engineering (southeast corner)

> x corpse. put hand on it. n.

Engineering (northwest corner)

> x core. w. n. w. s.

Corridor (near lift doors)

DON'T eat the sandwich! You'll die of food poisoning.

> x sandwich. push button.

Interior of lift

> push bridge. (+20)

Corridor (near bridge)

The officers don't have much to say, so don't bother trying to chat them up.

CAUTION: Don't eat the aspirin too soon.

> x viewscreen. (Something outside is doing an offensive probe.)

> z. (A low humming begins.)

> z. z. (It's giving you a slight headache.)

> open bottle. throw bottle. (+5)

> eat aspirin. (+5)

> z. z. (There's a flash and you're now at...)


> z. z. (You are pulled away to...)

Look out for the next instalment of Offensive Probing!

*** You have won ***

Alas, there was no next installment of Star Trek Meets The Grues, so you'll just have to imagine what happened next.





You have a SIX item carrying capacity.


You have so far scored your-score out of a possible 140, in several turns, which makes you ranking.


Thank You to my Patreon supporters

This walkthrough is provided free of charge since I wrote this walkthrough prior to January 2015 when I began my Patreon account. I've since reformatted this walkthrough to use my currently preferred style. I hope you enjoy it!

I'm still creating new walkthroughs! Please visit my Patreon account if you're interested in helping me create more interactive fiction walkthroughs. I appreciate all the help I can get! Thanks again.