Captain Blood (L’Arche du Captain Blood in France) is the name of a French video game from 1988 made by ERE Informatique (soon relabeled with their short-lived Exxos label) and released by Infogrames. It was later re-released in the UK by Players Premier Software. The title tune is a stripped down version of “Ethnicolor” by Jean Michel Jarre.
Captain Blood was developed jointly by Didier Bouchon and Philippe Ulrich, both contributing design and scenario, and Bouchon graphics and programming for the Atari ST version. Bouchon originally designed covers for ERE informatique’s Gazoline Software label, but he learned to program in assembler for the Atari ST after Ulrich provided him with one. Bouchon then created fractal-generated realtime graphics that inspired both to do a sci-fi inspired video game.
After ERE‘s absorption by Infogrames in summer of 1987 (partly justified by preliminary versions of Captain Blood), Ulrich and Bouchon isolated themselves in the Landes in order to have the game ready for Christmas. Many adaptations for both 16-bit and 8-bit machines were developed in successive months, although they were straight ports of the original Atari ST version in graphics, sound effects or music, and therefore follow the limitations of that machine.
The titular character of the game is a 1980s video game designer, Bob Morlock, who had picked “Captain Blood” as a nickname in tribute to the film starring Errol Flynn of the same name. Morlock develops a new video game about aliens and space travel. While testing for the first time his new project, he becomes warped inside the spaceship of the very game he had designed. Soon after, Blood is forced to go into hyperspace mode and, due to an incident, gets accidentally cloned 30 times. For 800 years, Blood tracks down every clone, as each one took a portion of his vital fluid. When the game begins, Blood successfully disintegrated 25 clones but he needs to kill the last five clones who turned out to be the most difficult to track down or he will lose his last connections with the human species.
- ARGanoid’s Captain Blood Worship Page
- Oldskool.org Captain Blood Shrine (includes Captain Blood novella)
- The Adventure Gamer – Captain Blood
>Captain Blood got finally a remake :
Captain Blood Reloaded
>The Ark of Captain Blood , Exploring , Seeking , Discovering in the Universe .
FULL CAPTAIN BLOOD RE-SOURCE.->Also on page 2 as archive for the future.
>Vocabulary List on page 3
>Faq Troubleshooting on page 4
When you encounter a particularly friendly alien, ask it the following question using the alien icons “CODE GG1”.
The alien will then give you co-ordinates of another alien called GG.
Go to the specified planet and you can then ask GG for the co-ordinates of all the other aliens around,
by asking “CODE INFORMATION HELP”
If that doesn’t work, replace ‘HELP’ with the name of an alien.
>VIDEO OF COMMANDER BLOOD
->Captain Blood is a unique kind of game. It could be described as a graphic adventure – but it has little in common with the likes of Monkey Island. In fact, the only game which comes anywhere near the same experience is the 1995 sequel, Commander Blood. Unfortunately, Commander Blood lost much of the first game’s interaction (in the form of the UPCOM). It also lost its language (see below).
When the game starts, Blood is dying. Unless he can find some ‘vital fluid’ within a few hours, his health will quickly start to deteriorate. Fortunately for Blood, he has five clones living somewhere out there in the galaxy – if he can find them, he can kill them and get the fluid he needs to live. Unfortunately, an alien out to make a quick buck has sold this information to them, and they’ve suddenly made themselves scarce.
When the game starts, you are orbiting one of four planets (randomly selected at the start of each game. Incidentally, this does not apply to the 48K Spectrum version, where you always start at the same planet). Your first task is to launch an OORXX – a kind of biological probe – and pilot it down to the surface to see who’s living down there.
Once the OORXX has reached its destination, it will stop; you will then have to wait about ten seconds while the computer renders the landscape. Then you will come face to face with your first alien. And that is where the fun starts.
Depending on which of the four planets you started at (it’s not possible to tell until you see the alien, because each planet looks different every game), you will see one of four aliens:
- Yoko (a young Izwal who’s lost his daddy)
- Pop Unknown (a spooky Buggol, who seems to have a personality disorder)
- Dead Genetic (a Croolis-Ulve with a big gun and wraparound sunglasses, who wants you to kill all his enemies)
- Great Bounty (a Migrax, the very same alien who told the five Duplicates about your plan to kill them. Although he’s actually a really nice guy once you get to know him…)
It is now that you come across the game’s most revolutionary aspect. Apart from the fact that it was about ten years ahead of its time (its graphics were better than pretty much any other ST game, and don’t look particularly dated even today), the thing that really set CAPTAIN BLOOD apart from other games was the UPCOM. UPCOM stands for Universal Protocol of COMmunication, and it is the way in which you talk to all the aliens that you come across in the game. In front of you are a hundred and twenty icons (not all on the screen at once, obviously), each of which corresponds to a word, such as ‘me’, ‘you’ and ‘reproduction’ (the last of which, incidentally, is a very popular word among most of the races of Hydra…). By clicking on icons, you can form a sentence, which you can then send through the translator by clicking the button in the middle. The alien will then generally say something back at you. Once it has finished, you can say some more stuff to it. And so on. Until one of you breaks off the conversation.
Here’s the really great bit, though. Whenever an alien talks to you, you don’t just get a load of icons flashed up in front of you (unless you’ve got the Spectrum version, that is). As each icon appears, a sound corresponding to it comes out of the speakers. A weird, alien language. Each different species uses the same language – but some talk at different speeds. The sounds uttered by an Izwal or a Sinox are at a very high speed, and can’t be deciphered, but the less intelligent races – in particular, the Croolis, Duplicates, Migrax and Yukas, talk at a sensible speed, allowing you to hear each word. Eventually, if you listen to them talking enough, you might be able to write a dictionary… (Click here to go straight to the Bluddian dictionary.)
A guide to the Hydra galaxy.
Hydra is a pretty huge place, containing 32,768 locations. Seeing how there are about thirty characters in the game, this means that if you try and progress by selecting a random destination, you have roughly a 0.09% chance of hitting an occupied planet. So always write down all the coordinates you are given – and don’t forget to write down the coordinates of the planet you start at, as well.
For more information about Hydra, read the rest of this page, particularly the tutorial.
The races of Hydra
- IZWAL – Peace-loving humanoid creatures – fairly intelligent. There are three of them in the game.
- MIGRAX – (Usually) friendly creatures who like to travel. There are two of them in the game.
- CROOLIS-ULVE – Look like bodybuilders with massive guns. Their whole lives are dedicated to destroying the Croolis-Vareux. There are four of them.
- CROOLIS-VAREUX – Look similar to the Croolis-Ulves, except they are purple. Their whole lives are dedicated to destroying the Croolis-Ulves. (Four of them)
- BUGGOL – Weird caterpillar-like creatures who take their politics seriously. (Three of them)
- YUKAS – Insectoid things. Very stupid. Enemies of the Buggol. (One of them)
- TUBULAR BRAIN – Very weird beings with, as their name may suggest, brains which look like tubes… (Two of them, although they are both identical in every respect (I suspect this is a bug))
- KINGPAK – Fairly stupid Pacman things who just sit around getting high on Tromp tails… (One of them)
- TROMP – One very small step away from being a dumb animal, this creature has a vocabulary of about five words, which makes it totally pointless to talk to… (Four of them)
- ONDOYANTE – Dream creatures which can change their appearance depending on how much they like you. For example, the ondoyante Trauma, who hates you, appears as a naked zombie woman whose flesh has gone green and is falling off. (I won’t go into what the other ondoyante, Torka, looks like…)
- SINOX – The most intelligent creatures in the galaxy. They look like jet engines… (Two of them)
- ROBHEAD – Ancient robot killing machines who have lost their bodies. Over the millenia, their circuits have worn out, and now they just talk gibberish. Which, incidentally, is great fun to listen to… (Four of them)
- ANTENNA – My favorite aliens in the game. They’re cute green blobs with eyes on stalks. When I say cute, I mean cute to the power of infinity – the cutest thing you will ever see in your lifetime. They’re not very intelligent – just about the only words they ever say are ‘Good’, ‘Friend’ and ‘Laugh’, which adds to their cuteness… (Four of them)
- TRICEPHAL – The most difficult creature to find. Tricephals have three heads, which has the side effect of making them say the last word in every sentence three times. There is just one of them.
- DUPLICATES – Blood’s clones. There are five of them. I particularly like Duplicate 2, who, when you finally catch him, just cries a lot, says he doesn’t want to die, and calls you daddy. It really breaks my heart when I have to fry him, but unfortunately it’s that or die yourself…
The Captain Blood tutorial – for all those people who never actually worked out what was going on…
Okay. See if this sounds familiar to you:
You get this new game, you load it up, you don’t really know what to do, so you just fly around the galaxy blowing up planets.
This is apparently what most people got up to with Captain Blood. If you were one of them, read on and discover the incredible world that lurks beneath its surface…
Before we start, a glossary might be useful. And lo and behold, if this isn’t one right here:
- The Duplicates (or Numbers) – Captain Blood is dying. Unless he can get some ‘vital fluid’, he will be dead within a few days. He can’t get ‘vital fluid’ from anyone else, because his body would reject it – it has to have the same DNA as his own. And as luck would have it, he has five clones out there, somewhere. Unfortunately they’ve heard about his plans, and have made themselves scarce. Your task is to find them, teleport them and disintegrate them, so that you can get at their precious juices.
- The Ark – Your ship. It, its components and its subsystems are all completely biological. When you start the game you will be sitting at the helm. On your left is the Fridgitorium. This is a cold storage facility where aliens can be teleported to. If you like you can disintegrate whichever alien is in the Fridgitorium by clicking on the button below it.
The bridge of the Ark
- OORXX – A multifunctional biological probe. There are three uses of an OORXX:
– OORXX Landing – Click on the relevant button and you can pilot the OORXX down to the planet. All the aliens in Hydra live at the end of valleys, so you will have to fly to the entrance of the valley (using the arrow on the mouse pointer to tell you which direction to go), and then hurtle down the valley at massive speeds. Use the left and right mouse buttons to slow down and speed up respectively. And try not to crash. If you crash seven times, the poor OORXX will be totally knackered, and you will have to try again with a different one.
If, when you are doing an OORXX landing, you hear a persistent beeping sound, accompanied by some arrows moving towards the centre of the screen, don’t worry – it just means that the planet’s defence systems have locked on, and a missile is about to fly up your ass. You have to fool the defences by flying as low as possible. Sometimes it is not possible to fly low without crashing into the scenery, so you will have to come to a stop, hover by the ground and wait for the threat to pass.
You can tell how close you are to death by looking at the two arrows which move in to meet each other at the centre of the screen. When they touch each other the OORXX will be destroyed, so make sure that doesn’t happen. Incidentally, sometimes if you fly very low at speed, the beeping will stop, but the arrows will keep moving inwards. I suspect this is a bug. Come to a halt and wait for the arrows to disappear before continuing.
– Destroy Planet – Click on this button, and hey presto, the planet will go ‘Boom’. Make sure you’re in PaCifiST’s ‘Line’ mode for this. Oh, and be careful – don’t blow up all the planets in the game, or you won’t be able to get anywhere!
– Surveillance – Click here to get an overheap map of the planet. There are two uses of this. This first is that, back in the old days, these graphics were considered pretty damned impressive (well, by me at least). The second is that this option will tell you whether or not there are defences on the planet – these are indicated by flashing things. (The position doesn’t matter). You can zoom in or out by clicking the icon again – this is more ‘eye candy’ than anything else.
- Hydra – the galaxy in which all the fun takes place. You can move around Hydra by going to the Galaxy Map. Once there, select a destination by dragging the two lines so that they intersect at the appropriate coordinates. Then click on the ‘Go’ button. Left-clicking on it will do the full hyperspace sequence, but if you’re in a hurry, just right-click on it and you will immediately appear at the destination.
- Aliens – See the big list earlier on this page. There are lots of aliens – some friendly, some aggressive. The important thing to remember is that no matter what they threaten to do to you, they are actually totally impotent. For example, when a Buggol named Morlock tells you that you are now his prisoner, you are in fact free to leave at any time…
On the right is the Birth Ramp. This is where the OORXX (see below) come from.
At the bottom left part of the screen are three icons. The first allows you to load or save the game. During the first five minutes of the game, this button means ‘load’. After that, it means ‘save’. This is a cunning and effective device to stop you from constantly reloading if you mess up.The second icon takes you to the Planet Display. The third icon takes you to the Galaxy Map.At the bottom right part of the screen are three more icons. These are only active when you are in ‘Planet Display’ mode. They allow you to use the three features of the OORXX – see just below to find out what these are.
Slightly to the bottom right of the Birth Ramp is the ? button. This allows you to re-activate a landed OORXX, thus saving the need to constantly pilot new OORXXs to the surface. Due to the way the game engine works, there are a some times when the ? button will disappear for a certain planet, and you will have to send down a new OORXX.
The tutorial itself…
Okay, here we go. This is what you have to do to start learning the world of Captain Blood.Run the game. This is a vital step. Listen to the music, press a key when you’ve finished. Wait for it to load. Select the appropriate language.You are now sitting at the helm of the Ark, your biological ship. An OORXX (see glossary) comes down the birth ramp and sits there, ready for action. The clock at the top reads: 0000 (or something like that). Let’s get ready to rumble.Before you have time to take a look around, the display changes. You are now at the Planet Display screen. The big round thing in front of you is a planet. There are three icons on the right of the screen. Click on the third one (i.e. the one furthest to the right).You can now see an overhead satellite view of the planet. You can click on the icon again to zoom in.The purpose of this screen is to look for planetary defences. These are indicated by flashing symbols. If there are none, you will be able to land safely. If there are defences, you will still be able to land, but you will need to use some extra skill.Exit this screen by clicking on the Planet Display icon to the left of the screen.You are back at the Planet Display screen. Now you must pilot an OORXX down to the planet. Before you do this, it is a good idea to know how to fly the OORXX.Moving the mouse left, right, up or down will make the OORXX fly in that direction. You can slow down using the left mouse button, and speed up using the right mouse button. If there are defences on the planet, your task will be made a lot more difficult. To avoid the defences you will have to fly as low as possible. This is not always easy, and sometimes you will have to come to a halt, descend, and wait for the threat to pass.Click on the OORXX Landing button (the left-most button of the three). You will be given control of the OORXX, and within a few seconds you will be flying over the planet’s surface.If you hear a constant beeping sound, this is the sound of the planetary defences. The defences’ targetting systems are represented by two arrows which move in from the sides of the screen. If the two arrows meet, the OORXX is destroyed and you will have to start the landing from the beginning. To stop this happening, take note of the techniques mentioned above.You must now guide the OORXX to the entrance of the valley (as mentioned in the glossary, all aliens in the Hydra galaxy live at the ends of valleys). This is fairly easy – you just have to keep flying straight ahead. If you drift off course, an arrow will appear on the mouse pointer telling you which direction you should be going.When you get to the entrance to the valley, you will then have to fly through the valley itself. It is reccommended that you slow down before attempting this – flying through the valley at maximum speed requires a lot of skill.
If the OORXX crashes into the landscape seven times, it will be destroyed and you will have to restart the landing. Crashing in the valley is very easy, and it can often be difficult to get back into the centre of the valley to continue your flight. This makes it even more important that you do not crash.When you get to the end of the valley, the ship will slow down and come to a halt. The landscape will then be fractally rendered. Note that there is a secret shortcut which allows you to bypass the valley and reach your destination by a much easier route – but I’ll leave you to discover that for yourself.Now we get to the interesting bit. You’ve finished your first landing, and you’ve come face to face with an alien. The UPCOM translation system appears at the bottom of the screen. The alien says something to you. The game has begun.The alien in front of you is one of four different aliens. You meet a different one each time you start the game. Before you start talking to the alien, however, read this:
How to speak Bluddian using the UPCOM
The UPCOM is a very simple interface which allows you to interact with the aliens. I will now quickly tell you about its layout.
On the far left of the screen is the teleport button. This only appears when it is possible to use it. The teleport button allows you to either teleport the alien in front of you to the Ark’s fridgitorium. You can only do this if the alien is happy with the idea. You can also use this button to teleport a creature in the fridgitorium down to the planet. You can only do this if there is a creature actually in the fridgitorium, and the planet must be totally unoccupied.
In the middle of the screen, there is a large panel full of UPCOM icons, each of which represents a word. You can scroll this panel using the scroll bar at the bottom. Above the panel there are two areas in which the conversation takes place. When you enter a sentence by clicking the relevant icons, your words will appear in the right-hand conversation panel. When the sentence is finished, you actually say it by pressing the ‘mouth’ button in the middle. Anything the alien says to you appears in the left-hand conversation panel.
On the far right of the screen are two buttons. The top-most (smaller) one acts as a ‘backspace’ key, in case you click on the wrong icon. The one below it terminates the conversation, and sends you back to the Ark.
Incidentally, you normally only have to carry out one OORXX landing on each planet you visit – when you leave a planet, the OORXX you put there will remain. So if you have already landed on a planet, you can bypass all the trouble of landing again by clicking the ‘?’ button on the Ark’s main bridge (it’s just below the Birth Ramp). In certain cases (particularly when some teleporting has been carried out), this will not work, and you will have to do another landing.
Conversation via the UPCOM
Okay, back to talking Bluddian. Using the UPCOM can be quite daunting at first, reason being there are about 150 icons to learn. Of course, you don’t actually HAVE to learn them – you can just get a translation by moving the mouse pointer over each icon, and this is how most people play. If you play it for long enough, however, learning the icons will be useful, as you will be able to play faster.
One of the problems faced by beginners is that they don’t know where the icons actually are in the icon panel. For example, you might want to use the word ‘genetic’, but you can’t remember where on the fairly large icon panel it is. As ever, the best way to learn is just to play it and take a look at what each icon is, and try to remember. It will soon become easy. Many icons meaning similar things are located in the same place, so this helps as well.Okay, now hopefully you should be able to just about get by in using the UPCOM. But there is another thing that needs to be mastered – understanding the aliens, and understanding how they understand you…The first part of this is normally easy. The aliens enjoy saying things like ‘Me like female ondoyante, laugh laugh’. They also talk about reproduction a lot (this is an ability that many creatures in Hydra do not have). Sometimes they will just appear to be speaking gibberish. Often, the reason for this is that they ARE speaking gibberish. Many things that are said do not have much meaning or relevance to anything, and you can ignore these. Some creatures are either insane (the Robheads), or just weird (the Tubular Brains), so you’ll have a hard time understanding what they’re on about. There is one other thing that you should be aware of, however: Code Friend Friend.
Code Friend Friend is a phrase you will hear often during the game. Say the words ‘Code Friend Friend’ to several aliens, and you will get a number of different responses. Races like the Izwal and Migrax will be pleased if you say this, but the evil Croolis will become enraged, and may even throw you off their planet.
Code Friend Friend is a kind of universal message of peace and goodwill. There are two characters who can tell you the code in full (it consists of about ten sentences). There is also one character who is very eager for you to tell him the code – so it could be a good idea if you wrote it down.
There are two other codes in the game – one which will allow you to talk to the Sinox, and another which the young Izwal Yoko gives you. (But the latter seems to have no purpose).Now we get to the subject of understanding how the aliens interpret your words. After playing the game for years, the way the game’s underlying code actually works has become obvious to me. Of course, I won’t reveal it to you – that might spoil the illusion of intelligence… But there is sometimes a tendency for the aliens to pick up on a word from your sentence and say something based on this one word, which may often be totally irrelevant. The extreme example of this is when you use the word ‘Me’ with the Yukas named President Rosko. For example, if you say ‘Me like you’, he would reply with ‘Kill me, fear fear’ (meaning he thinks you want to kill him), then he chucks you off the planet. The reason for this reaction is that both of these sentences contain the word ‘Me’… Don’t worry, though – these situations are very rare, and don’t do any harm to the game, other than to annoy you a bit…Finally, and this is important, ALWAYS write down any coordinates you are given. Unless, of course, you’ve already written them down. If you don’t do this you will not be able to go anywhere. You should also remember to write down the new coordinates if you teleport an alien to a new planet – otherwise you won’t be able to find him again.
Now we return to the point before you learned to speak Bluddian:
The alien in front of you is one of four different aliens. You meet a different one each time you start the game. Below, I will now tell you about each of the four starting aliens, and give you a few tips to set you on your way:
- Yoko, a young Izwal: He looks like a humanoid, except with a very long tounge, and a yellow body. Yoko is a young, innocent, peace-loving Izwal, whose father has been kidnapped by an evil Duplicate. So go easy on him. And don’t cry too much when something nasty happens to him – everything will be all right in the end. Probably.
- Pop Unknown, a neurotic Buggol: Looks like a weird pink caterpillar thing. Pop Unknown is a very weird person, susceptible to violent mood swings. There is not much useful information that can be got out of him. When you first meet him he will chuck you off his planet a lot, but don’t let that discourage you – just use the ‘?’ button to go see him again.
- Dead Genetic, a violent Croolis-Ulve with a big gun and wraparound sunglasses: Like all the other Croolis in the universe, Dead Genetic’s ambition in life is to totally wipe out all his enemies and urinate on their bodies. Or at least get someone else to do it for him… Unlike all the other Croolis in the universe, he is friends with a weak, pathetic Izwal – Yoko’s father Maxon, who, being a geneticist, gave him the ability to reproduce.
- Great Bounty, a Migrax: Looks a bit like the alien out of Alien, except a lot friendlier. But you might get annoyed at his tendency to laugh manically whenever you ask him about the Duplicates – he was the one who told them of your little plan in the first place… Great Bounty speaks highly of another Migrax, Missile Brave – but won’t tell you how to find him. So you’ll have to work out how to force the information out of him…
Well, I must now sign off. I’ve left you with more information than you could possibly need. All that remains is for me to give you a few tips to make your life easier:
- Don’t blow up too many planets – fun as it may be, you can’t complete the game if you kill an essential character… Blow up some unoccupied planets instead.
- When teleporting aliens, it can sometimes be useful to take them to easy-to-remember coordinates. However, I seem to recall some problems when teleporting aliens to the planet at coordinates 000,000, so don’t go there.
- Duplicates are affected by a bug. If you persuade one of them to teleport, and then you teleport them back to the surface of a planet, they will no longer speak to you, and you will not be able to teleport them again. So, once they are in the fridgitorium, fry ’em.
The complete Bluddian vocabulary
Compiled by Andrew R. Gillett
BLUDDIAN VOCABULARY LIST (with pronounciation):
English Bluddian Pronounciation Original meaning
? (question) neumm? nuhm
not dem duhm
yes neumm nuhm
no dem duhm
me mumgugue short ‘gu’
(i.e. not as in ‘goo’)
hello h~ungugue as with mumgugue
bye nowge nowg
want auch ouch
give auch ouch (See note below – important)
travel blasch blaschh teleport
like levée lev-aigh
say elley ell-aigh
know knevée nev-aigh
unknown eniél~ en-ail
(laugh) laugha laf-fa
(cry) gelde gel-deh
kill kille keele
vote/opinion pitchè pitcher vote
money mbit mm-bit
trap/prison abeder aabeder
danger vaider vie-deh
play esh ouh-sh
race eshd~ ouh-sh-d
disarm alhab al-hab
destroy dille deele
nonsense sukkak suhk-ak
time sukka suhkk-ah
meeting eshca esh-ka
unpleasant a~a~a~radud aaradud radioactivity
urgent l~oid loid
search s~h~ush shush
information ishna ish-nah
idea ellioid e~oid
missile roitzer royt-zuh
code ellioté elli-ottay
friend brooghund broog-und
enemy brookluhnd brook-lund
spirit / mind brooghuh brooger
brain brooklhè brookler
warrior augemen orgermen
scientist aumemen orrmermen
president grummen gruhmen
genetic grummen gruhmen
creation gauphke gowfk reproduction
female tautd taut-d
parent mnorrh mnorr
people beengo bee-engo
small s~m~ su~m
strong s~t~d stu~d
bad b~d~ bu~d
good guhd good
brave reph rep~f
(insult) augen orgun
dead dorngen dorng-en
poor p~l pu~l
stupid pitrough pit-rah tromp
lamer pmithouse p~mit-house kingpak
criminal pithoushe pit-houshe robhead
nutter minnhord minn-ord croolis vareux
violent minnorgh minn-orr croolis ulve
nice mimgu mimgoo izwal
traveller mumgue muhm-goo migrax
friendly huntd hoohntd~ antenna
megalomaniac bureau buggol
hunktd hu~nk-td tricephal
weird bleugh bleu (same as with the tubular brain
Frenchword for blue)
animal ephoid eff-oid yukas
wizkid sioix see-oy sinox
girlfriend indyonte indy-ont ondoyante
number / duplicate aayott aigh-ott duplicate/number
devious dash morlock
young yaxa yoko
old maxor~ maxon
Me (as in me, creator
of this language…) blid blood
babe bmit b-mit torka
car sib ship
home illab ill-ab
place elliab illy-ab planet
ugly ediba eddy-bah trauma
ki kee kristo
earth di dee rosko
sol bala bah-lah (said fast) bow-bow
hour afgal aff-gal
is / equals eisht isht =
or / and eisht isht /
zero ushud uh-shuhd 0
one shud shuhd 1
two dele day-ler 2
three debe day-ber 3
four dege day-ger 4
five dene day-ner 5
six splash 6
seven spla splah 7
eight aout out 8
nine shout 9
These pronounciations don’t use any of those weird standard pronounciation
conventions, so you are still likely to make lots of mistakes as there is lots
of ambiguity. It’s best to look at both the pronounciation and the actual word when
deciding how to say something.
Previously, I had changed the pronounciation of one of the words. The word
auch (give) was changed to pitauch, to remove confusion, because the words
for give and want are the same. However, this new spelling just didn’t fit
in, and I have now changed it to the following:
Both give and want are spelt ‘auch’. If you want to know which meaning is
intended when ‘auch’ is used, to should look at the layout of the sentence.
Nowgue auch mumgugue ellioid – Means ‘You give me idea’
Nowgue auch ellioid mumgugue – Means ‘You want idea me’ (You want my idea)
You may have noticed that some words do not have meanings assigned to them. Some
of them do not even have an actual word assigned to them – they just consist of
an original Captain Blood meaning (for example, ‘oorxx’). Words with just an
original meaning correspond to words that in my experience are never actually
used in Captain Blood. It is hard to write down a word when you don’t know what
it sounds like. As for the words with no meanings assigned to them (for example,
‘ki’ or ‘hunktd’), it’s just because I haven’t actually ever got round to
thinking of something for them to mean…
A few words (such as aayott) have two meanings assigned to them. For example,
aayott means either ‘Number’ or ‘Duplicate’. This is because there were two
versions of the game, which had a few words changed between them. Normally, aayott
should mean ‘Number’, but if you need to, don’t hesitate to use it to mean ‘Duplicate’.
Three words which are very easy to get mixed up are: Mbit (money), Bmit (babe)
and Mit (impossible).
Compound phrases / Nationalities
(Note: The nationalities translated below are just a bit of fun! I don’t really
think that all Americans are stupid, or that all Italians are politicians, or
even that all British are nice… No-one should take offence at anything written
English Bluddian Original meaning
Bluddian language ellioté blid code blood
American beengo pitrough people tromp
French beengo pmithoushe people kingpak
Arab beengo pithoushe people robhead
German beengo minnhord people croolis-ulve
Chinese beengo minnorgh people croolis-vareux
British beengo mimgu people izwal
Australian beengo mumgue people migrax
Scandinavian beengo huntd people antenna
Italian beengo bureau people buggol
beengo hunktd people tricephal
Asian beengo bleugh people tubular-brain
Greek beengo ephoid people yukas
Japanese beengo sioix people sinox
beengo indyonte people ondoyante
Russian beengo aayott people duplicate
Examples of Bluddian sentences:
(Please insert the name of one of your friends in place of ‘Bob’)
– Mumgugue auch trag nowgue
– Augen, nowgue rech
– Nowgue auch mumgugue kille Bob neumm?
– Dem, mumgugue dem auch nowgue kille mumgugue
– Mumgugue levée dille illab Bob
– Mumgugue levée esh ‘tennis’ brooklhè Bob
– Nowgue auch blasch illab mumgugue neumm?
– Nowgue dem auch mumgugue mbit eisht mumgugue kille nowgue
– Nowgue auch sukka
– Mumgugue trag rech
– Bob eisht tautd
– Mumgugue greh brooklhe, nowgue s~m~ brooklhe
– Bob eisht a~a~a~radud
– Nowgue levée mumgugue neumm?
– Mumgugue elley ellioté blid
Try and work out what they mean…
Here are some actual sentences from the game:
– Laugha laugha laugha laugha laugha laugha laugha laugha! Mumgugue
Greh Mbit, mumgugue greh mumgue. Mumgugue dem levée nowgue knevée
Gauphke-Shud-Dege. Gauphke-Shud-Dege elliab mumgue. Mumgugue elley
ishna mumgue Roitzer Reph. Roitzer Reph kille nowgue, laugha dorgun!
– Mit nowgue auch ephoid grummen di. Nowgue enéil~ reph. Mumgugue Dash
beengo bureau. Mumgugue dem grummen. Nowgue pitchè Dash. Dash blash
eed tautd bureau. Dash auch dille abeder. Dem roitzer. Dem
a~a~a~radud. Dash alhab elliab. Dash dem abeder. Dash grummen Dash
grummen di. Dash grummen Dash grummen di. Dash grummen Dash grummen
di. Dash grummen Dash grummen di. Nowgue s~h~ush ellioid. Mumgugue
greh ellioid. Nowgue pitchè mumgugue. Mumgugue greh grummen. Nowgue
pitchè Dash neumm?
That last one was the speech of a Presidential candidate trying to get
you to vote for him… If you do so, he tries to take you prisoner
(except that he totally fails and you can leave whenever you like). I
might have missed a few sentences out or got the odd word wrong, I
don’t have a photographic memory…
I have just one message for people who don’t think that Bluddian is a
Mumgugue trag rech! Mumgugue trag rech! Mumgugue auch tautd! Gauphke
Q: Very soon after I start playing, Blood’s hand starts shaking, making the game hard to control.
A: Normally the hand will start shaking only after about an hour or two of gameplay, if Captain Blood has not had an infusion of Duplicate blood. However, under certain circumstances, the hand will start shaking immediately after the start of the game. It is not clear what causes this problem, but it may related to copy-protection. Alternatively, it may just be a bug that only crops up when certain versions of the game are played on certain emulators.
This problem does not seem to be present when using the cracked version of the game (on this page) with the latest version of Steem (version 2.61 at time of writing).
Q: I pressed the “OORXX landing” button, but the game froze and weird sounds came out of my speakers.
A: This is a bug which was in the original game. It doesn’t happen often, but is annoying when it does. Ensure that you save the game regularly. If using Steem, you can use the snapshot feature to save the game.
Q: Flying down valleys is too difficult/annoying/time consuming.
A: Here is a very useful tip: when you see the entrance to the valley appear in front of you, immediately steer hard to the left or right. Take care not to crash into any high rocks when doing this – inexperienced players may wish to slow down. You will then find yourself in a valley that is much wider than the ‘usual’ one – it is in fact the area where the world wraps at the edge. In this area you can fly at full speed with little danger of crashing.
Q: I’m flying along and being targetted by the planet’s defence systems. I fly low down but the arrows still close in on me and I get destroyed.
A: This is a bug. If you are flying close to the ground but the defence arrows are still closing in, move higher until you see them start to recede again. Alternatively, come to a complete halt, this should also stop the planet’s defence systems.
Q: When I say “Duplicate” to an Izwal, why does he say “One two three, me great scientist (laugh)”?
A: This is because in the original version of Captain Blood, the Duplicates were known as “Numbers”.
Note on two different versions of Captain Blood
Recently I discovered that there were two versions of CB on the ST. I always knew there was a single-sided, two disk version and a double-sided, one disk version – but I didn’t know that the actual game had been changed in between.
There are the following differences between the two versions:
- Original single-sided version had a few words and one icon that were different from the newer version – Numbers instead of Duplicates, Mind instead of Spirit, Good-Looking instead of Good. These differences are also present in other versions on different platforms.
- Single-sided version allowed player to alter the height of the OORXX while it was coming to a halt after landing. This tends to mess up the fractal graphics.
Also, when running under PacifiST, there are five BIG problems with this version:
- The intro music doesn’t sound right…
- When carrying out an OORXX landing, the graphics constantly get corrupted, making it very hard to see what is going on.
- During the OORXX landing, mouse control is very erratic. Acceleration and deceleration do not always work properly, and moving the mouse too fast confuses the emulator.
- The sampled sound is liable to play too fast. It may also get garbled sometimes.
- The colours are messed up on a regular basis, especially with certain aliens.
Of course, the ST version wasn’t the only version of CB. After its critical acclaim on the ST, it was converted to a whole ton of other platforms. See Sam Jeffreys’ Captain Blood page.
Here’s a list showing what I think of each of the versions I have played:
- Atari ST: The original and best. Dumps on all other versions from a great height. But doesn’t work properly under emulation.
- Amiga: This would be good, except all the samples have been messed up, and there is NO Bluddian language – one of the most essential parts of the game.
- PC: Runs in EGA, and has PC speaker sound. Seeing how the incredible graphics and sound are very important to CB, this version is a bit cack. If you’re going to use the PC speaker, you should at least use it to its full potential…
That said, this version is probably the closest to the ST version in terms of gameplay.
- Spectrum: In a way, this is better looking and sounding than the PC version, because it was designed from the start to be implemented on a weak machine. Retains the ST version’s music quite effectively, and while there is no Bluddian language, the sound accompanying each UPCOM communication is slightly more appropriate than the terrible PC and Amiga equivalents.
Oh, but make sure you play the 128K version! The 48K version has had the gameplay altered so that the game is totally linear… (Although this is still better than all other Spectrum 48K games…)
- Amstrad CPC: This suffers from an incredibly low resolution, and sluggish controls.
So – which one should you play? The only choice is the ST version. The others totally fail to do it justice. Even the Amiga version fails due to different, inferior, samples. If you can’t get the emulated ST version to work properly, the PC and Amiga versions are probably the best alternatives – but they don’t give you the full, proper experience.
The Captain Blood solution….
You may be surprised to find that this has been on my site for quite a while – I just haven’t made a link to it yet. I’m reluctant to do this until a long time after I have written my tutorial – I want all you people out there to have played the game properly first before grabbing the solution…
But if there’s anyone out there who is really desperate for it, mail me.