Welcome to the Game Guide where we will tell you the basics of how to get started in Acaratus. This will be a living guide that will be updated with new information as we work on the Early Access version of the game.
So we will go through the basics of the game regarding the campaign.
The loadout is situated at the bottom of the screen in the hangar. Loadout is what you take with you into battle and concists of unit slots, card bar and a commander.
Unit slots are numbered in roman numerals. The roman numerals represent the strenght of that slot and adding units to different slots shows you how the stack number within the green box changes.
What are stacks?
Stacks is a multiplied health so imagine those as lives and you have armour within those. so if you have 4 stacks of a unit the health of that is your health times four.
The card bar on the far bottom of the screen is the bar where all your cards will be added that you pick in your Deck builder.
In order to add cards in your hand before battle you need to go to the deck builder screen. Click on the small cog icon with cards in it to the right of the loadout to open it.
Once there you can read about the cards by hovering over them and clikcing on them selects them and adds them to the loadout in the bottom. To remove selected cards just clikc the small icons in the Card Bar, you need to be in the Deck Builder in order to click the smaller icons.
Campaign Commander is a portrait of Adina and display of your insight stats.
Insight (not in the game yet)
Insight is a way of leveling in the Acaratus Campaign. (not available at the moment)
In order to get to the hangar click the small cog icon with a wrench in it to the left of your loadout. This opens the hangar where you will stock your units in the top icons. So in order to build a unit you press the little button that says Add with a big plus sign on it.
Once in the Build Menu you will have to pick what parts you want. Battle suits in Acaratus are modular so all parts have a unique stat that affects the unit as a whole.
To attach a part just drag and drop the desired part onto an available blue slot.
So you always start with a Core that is the beating heart of your unit and is that determines what type of unit it will become in a sence. After that you pick what types of legs you want. notice that some legs are meant to walk as a pawn which means you walk diagonally for example.
Next is the fun part and this is where you will define the strengths and weaknessess of your unit. mix and match however you want and give it a spin and dont forget to give it a name. =)
Once done click the save button and you are almost ready for your first battle but the unit is still only in the hangar so add that unit to your Loadout by dragging and dropping it to one of the avaialble (unlocked) slots in the Loadout.
On your journey through the Campaign you will encounter a Blacksmith in towns. At the Blacksmith you can unlock and upgrade slots for gold that you aquire by winning battles and finding treasures. (you will also be able to participate in tournaments in towns to win prizes too)
So what does an upgrade mean? You upgrade slots in order to get your unit stacks stronger. The higher the number on the slot, the stronger the unit becomes if you put it there.
Merchants (not in the game yet)
A merchant is a place where you can trade,buy and sell all the assets you have aquired in order to get newer things or just improve what you have equipped. Trade by adding from your list to the right and barter with what you want from him on the left. If you only click on what he has on the left you will buy that item. Money is displayed in the top left corner.
At the top there is a timer ticking down the seconds for each turn so use your time well and plan ahead. Under that is your end turn button.
Acaratus is square based. Units use the squares in different ways depending on what legs you put on them. Some walk diagonally, others omni and others in straight lines.
Blue squares are cover squares that give you a percentage of cover when standing in the right direction. Red squares show when holding over an enemy unit and shows what that particular unit’s reach is.
Every move and attack costs Action Points (AP), the AP is displayed as a small green dot beside the unit’s stack number. Usually there are two of them. A movement costs one point, if you have moved a unit it wont be able to shoot for that turn (unless you have a class selected in skirmish/multiplayer mode). After a move you will always have a correction move which gives you extra nudge if needed.
Switch units – Left Mouse Click or tab button
Deselect – Right Mouse Click
Camera Pan – Hold Middle Mouse Button or w,a,s,d
Camera Zoom – Scroll Wheel
Q – Hangar
E – Card Menu
R – Commander Screen or Insight Screen
Space – End Turn
ESC – Options Menu
In order to win you need to think ahead and plan your positioning. Facing angle is important because the units back is more vulnerable than the front. Attacks do different damange depending on your targeted enemy and what parts you have put on your unit. Adding ability cards into play will aid you in battle if they are tailored to the way you want to play.
You will see different icons over the enemy showing what types of damage you can do depending on the unit build. By holding Left Mouse Button on the enemy a radial menu shows up with some info on every attack. Let go of the Left Mouse Button to select that attack and watch those iron beasts fight it out!
For more information click the enemy unit to display a more detailed description in the upper right corner.
Cards are drawn every round filling up your Command Point (CP) pool at the bottom. To use a card check that you have enough CP. To use a card you have two ways depending on the card context, either click it to activate it or click and drag to drop it on a unit or square.
Cards in Acaratus
To access the card overview, click on the little icon with cards to the right of the loadout.
Acaratus has a card system that goes hand in hand with the chess-like battles between mechs on the board. Though the design and function of each card is subject to change as we see fit,
the purpose will stay the same – playing a card gives the player an edge that could mean the difference between glorious victory, and bitter defeat.
Playing a card in the game requires Command Points. Each game, players start with a few Command Points(CP), and as the game goes on, you receive more and more CP.
Let’s take a look at the graphic design of our cards in Acaratus. In the middle of the card,
there is a memorable illustration that sets each card apart from the rest. The number in the
top-middle part of the card represents the Command Point cost, this is the amount of CP you
need in order to play the card. In the bottom section of the card, we find the name of the
card, as well as an icon that will appear on affected mech if the card has lasting
There are three different categories of cards: buff cards, command cards, and debuff cards.
The blue buff cards, are cards which provide your mechs with temporary boosts that either
work instantly or over time. Some buff card examples: Guard, Haste, Dodge.
The white command cards, are usually cards that target the playing field or the commanders
and their classes. Some command card examples: Strike, Timebandit, Flipcover.
The red debuff cards, are cards which target opponent mechs and temporarily worsen or disable them. Some debuff card examples: Slow, Suppress, Weaken.
So whats different in Skirmish and Multiplayer as opposed to the Campaign?
Commander Classes can be selected in the class menu by clicking the avatar image in the centre of the loadout. Each class represents a playstyle. Some playstyles for example have more units on the battlefield but less emphasis on the cards and others maybe have more of a focus on defensive strategies, you pick and try them out to see what fits. These will change as we will test it out during early access.