Marsport is a science fiction computer game that was released for the ZX Spectrum and Amstrad CPC home computers in 1985. It was published by Gargoyle Games in the United Kingdom and Dro Soft in Spain. Marsport was intended to be the first part of a trilogy called "The Siege of Earth" but parts two and three (Fornax and Gath) were not forthcoming. Because of this, it is often regarded as being part of an unofficial trilogy alongside Tir Na Nog and Dun Darach (both of which are part of the same official series) due to its having very similar gameplay to these titles. Marsport also has similarities to the later Gargoyle game, Heavy on the Magick.
The year is 2494. For seventy years, the Earth has been under siege by the insectoid Sept. Since the siege began, the Sept have been kept at bay by a huge Force Sphere which surrounds the Earth and the Moon. However, the Sept are on the verge of discovering how to breach the Sphere unless it can be strengthened according to the formulae contained in the original plans. Unfortunately, these plans are concealed somewhere in the Martian city of Marsport, now Sept-occupied and booby-trapped by the city's M-Central computer. One man, Commander John Marsh, has been sent to retrieve the plans in the belief that a determined man can sometimes achieve more than an army.
Marsport effectively has three distinct objectives:
1. Locate the M-Central computer; Marsport is a three-dimensional city, where levels are connected by express tube, which will take you up or down, but probably not both. In addition, many sections of the city cannot be reached until specific problems have been solved.
2. Gain access to the original Sphere plans, held in M-Central's inner sanctum. This will require re-exploration of Marsport, for having achieved the first objective, you will find that many parts of the city, previously unreachable, will now be open to you.
3. Leave the city of Marsport with the plans intact, which may prove the hardest task of all...
You will come across many beings, objects and city elements which may help or (more likely) hinder you. These are some of them:
The player can encounter two types of Sept: the hopping Warriors which patrol certain areas, and the stationary Warlords blocking certain passages.
Controlled by M-Central. Some are harmless information gatherers but some are warden units, now hostile to all intruders - human or Sept...
3. Supply units
The prime source of objects; they are continuously replenished.
Can be used for storing objects.
5. Refuse units
Can be used to dispose of unwanted objects.
6. Charge units
Can recharge energy devices (like a laser gun).
7. Factor units
Will combine two or more objects to manufacture a new object. Note that components are logically linked, so random attempts at manufacture will not work, and any irrelevant objects present in the unit will prevent manufacture!
8. Key stations
Will require the insertion of a key object to release a nearby wall unit or door. However, not all locked doors and units can be opened in this manner, and some may require a more active or remote solution...
9. Vidtex units
Provide (possibly) useful information which is displayed on the large video screen in the status area.