ARCHON depicts the eternal struggle between Light and Darkness as a contest of
action and strategy between opposing forces wrought from myth and legend. The
Light Side and the Dark Side are equal in number, balanced in strength, but not
identical. Their aim, however, is the same: conquest of the five "power points"
or the elimination of the opposite side.
THE TWO SCREENS
First is the strategy screen where, by turn, the icons are manoeuvred into
favourable positions. When an icon moves onto a square already occupied by an
opponent's icon, the game shifts to the battleground where both fight for that
INITIAL STRATEGY SCREEN
The Luminosity Cycle - "Luminance" squares on the strategy screen vary in
brightness throughout the game. Your fortunes tend to ebb and flow with this
cycle because Light Side icons are harder to defeat on light squares than when
they are on the dark squares and vice versa.
Power Points - Flashing symbols indicate the five power points. Icons on power
points heal faster and are protected from magic spells. You win the game when
you occupy all five power points.
Movement - Move the frame atop the icon you wish to select. Push the button to
choose icon. Move the frame atop the destination desired, and press button to
move icon to that destination.
There are three forms of movement: ground, fly, and teleport. Ground movers
cannot move diagonally, or through occupied squares, and fliers are restricted
only in where they land. Only the Wizard and the Sorceress can teleport.
Note: If you change your mind while manoeuvering a ground mover, you must
Combat is immediate and simultaneous. Joysticks (mouse, or direction keys)
direct movement of the icons and the button initiates an attack while
immobilizing your icon. There are three forms of combat. Knights and Goblins
wield swords and clubs; Banshees and the Phoenix's inflict damage in a
circular area around themselves; and all the other icons throw missiles of
The Attack Interval, while fast and furious, has limits. It takes a moment to
raise a sword or rip a boulder from the ground! The computer will sound a tone
when your icon is ready to launch another attack.
Barriers go through luminosity cycles of their own. A barrier is impenetrable
except when it disappears (becomes nearly transparent)
Life, Death, and Wounds affect the "lifelines" at either end of the arena
which indicate the current lifespan of the two battling icons. A victorious
icon from the arena returns to the strategy screen in control of the disputed
square. Wounded icons heal slowly with the passage of time; more quickly on a
power point; or instantly by a Heal spell.
Magic is the most significant strategic element. Only the Wizard and the
Sorceress can cast spells. You can cast each spell only once. Spells are
powerful but each one weakens the mage casting it.To cast a spell, move the
frame atop your mage and press the button twice Push the joystick up and down
to survey the spells still available, push the button when you find the one
you want. On the Macintosh, pull down the spells menu. You'll get additional
Effect: Moves icons any distance from one square to another.
Actions Required: Move the frame to the icon, push the button and then move
it to its destination.
Restrictions: You cannot move an enemy icon, move into a square already
occupied by your own icon, teleport onto or off a power point or teleport an
Effect: Heals any icon of all wounds.
Actions Required: Move the frame to the wounded icon and push the button.
Restrictions: You cannot heal an icon on a power point.
Effect: Two effects are possible. Reverse the flow of time or abruptly shift
time on the luminosity cycle.
Actions Required: None after selecting the spell.
Effect:Causes any two icons to trade places.
Actions Required: Move the frame to the icon you wish to transpose, push the
button. Then do the same to the other icon.
Restrictions: Imprisoned icons, or those icons on power points cannot be
Effect: Allows for attack of an enemy icon with a new, temporary icon
representing earth, air, fire or water. After the battle the elemental
Action Required: Move it to the icon you wish to attack.
Restrictions: You cannot attack an icon on a power point or choose which
elemental will respond to your summons.
Effect: Restores an icon previously killed in combat.
Actions Required: The revived icon comes from a display on your side of the
strategy screen and its destination must be a vacant square next to your mage.
Restrictions:You cannot revive a live icon. One of the squares next to your
mage must be vacant.
Effect: Keeps an icon from leaving its square. Important: An imprisoned mage
cannot cast spells. Imprisonment is temporary until the luminosity cycle
colour of the prison square matches that of the imprisoned icon.
Actions Required: Move the frame to the target icon and press the button.
Restrictions: You cannot imprison an icon on a power point.
If you change your mind while selecting a spell or if the spell you want is
unavailable or canceled, you may push the button while "CEASE CONJURING" is
displayed and then start over.
THE OPPOSING FORCES
The WIZARD mage casts balls of fire, and other spells.
The UNICORN is swift and agile. Its horn fires a bolt of energy.
The ARCHERS are endowed with quivers that are never empty.
A GOLEM is an artificial being and its weapons are boulders.
VALKRIES are females who can walk on air and carry an enchanted spear.
The DJINNI can raise a small tornado.
The PHOENIX can explode into a mass of fire and be unscathed. During
metamorphosis it is invulnerable.
The KNIGHTS are soldiers armed and armoured against far larger enemies than
The SORCERESS mage fires her lightning bolts and casts spells.
The BASILISK has quick movements and a deadly glance.
The MANTICORE's tail bristles with great quills.
The TROLL seizes whatever is handy and catapults it.
The SHAPESHIFTER steals form from its enemies and becomes a mirror image.
The DRAGON's flaming breath will kill many creatures. Its awesome powers make
it second only to the Sorceress.
The BANSHEE attacks with her keening wail, draining the life from anyone
The GOBLINS have gnarled clubs that are more than a match for the swords of
PLAYING HINTS AND TIPS
Conservative: Move your unfavorably located icons onto more favourable
squares. Establish a strong, balanced position early.
Magical Assault: Wipe out the strongest enemy icon right off the bat.This is
most easily done with a combination of spells.
Monster Romp: Risky but fun and sometimes surprisingly effective. Just fly or
teleport your strongest icon to the other side and take it romping' and
Strategy General Hints
Stay on your color. Plan ahead. Avoid traffic jams. Protect your mage!
Teleport: Handy for tossing a slow or unfavorably placed icon into your
opponent's back ranks.
Heal: Never heal a Shapeshifter since it regenerates between battles.
Shift Time: Use to prolong imprisonment. Strategic use could allow for a
concerted attack on the power points.
Exchange: Frustrate an enemy advance by exchanging a menacing intruder with a
Summon Elemental: Unaffected by changes in luminance, they are well suited for
attacking an enemy that remains on squares favourable to it.
Revive: Revive only your strong icons!
Imprison: The real trick is timing, coupled with Shift Time to prolong the
Combat General Hints
Don't move in straight lines. Hit and run. Use diagonal shots. Trap your
opponent in a corner. Confuse your opponent Know your icon's strengths and
WIZARD: Avoid using unless attacked.
SORCERESS: Avoid combat if possible!
UNICORN/BASILISK: Speed and distance are their prime weapons.
ARCHER: Keep in mind that the slow nature of their attacks.
GOLEM/TROLL: They have long lives and conduct deadly attacks.
DJINNI/DRAGON: You have power to spare here.
VALKRIE: Basically a tougher Archer.
PHOENIX: Move close-the closer, the better.
SHAPESHIFTER: Success depends on having the proper battleground.
MANTICORE: Has the advantage of a broader attack than its counterparts.
BANSHEE: Attacks efficiently, with great skill.
KNIGHT/GOBLIN: Moves quickly but erratically. Get in close and stay there.
ELEMENTALS: The Earth elemental should be played like a Golem/Troll.
Tactically, you can think of Fire as a Wizard, Air as an Archer and Water as a
Select the game configuration from the start up menu, use the cusor Keys and
ENTER to choose your side, who goes first and specific game controls.
Press ENTER on 'Start Game' when you are ready to play. Press Spacebar and hold
to skip through the start up sequence.
Left Right Down Up Fire
Light F H X W space
Dark F4 F6 F2 F8 small enter key
Pause Key: While in the combat arena is '0'
1. Strategy: Use joystick or keys to move icons or frames and press fire to
start or end moves. End your move on your starting square to cancel your move.
See your manual for more detailed instructions.
2. Combat: Use the following instructions for each icon:
Knight or Goblin: Move the joystick toward the enemy and press fire to swing
Banshee: Press fire to initiate attack, the Banshee can move while screaming.
Phoenix: Press fire to initiate attack, the Phoenix cannot move until the
explosion is over.
All others: Move the joystick or press the key in the direction you wish to
aim, then press fire.
Quitting the game: Use the escape key.
Changes to the Manual:
The Attack Interval: Instead of sounding a tone the computer places a coloured
block in the top left and right corner of the arena, this represents the ready
to attack tone.