|Distribution||5.25" floppy disk|
Zoyon Patrol was an early educational simulation game, produced by MECC for the Apple II computer. In the game, the player is the director of the Zoyon patrol, located on the fictional Zaphyr Island (supposedly located at 7°52' S, and 178º28' E, which is approximately 15 mile NNE of Fale).
A Zoyon is a fictional creature, whose names and features are combination of pre-existing creatures. For instance one Zoyon is called Catamonk, and it shares feature of a Cat and Monkey. An Elecoon has features of an Elephant and a Racoon.
As the director of the Zoyon Patrol, the player would be charged with taking messages about Zoyons, identifying the Zoyon in question, Trapping it alive, and arranging for its safe return to its native habitat. Every Zoyon is to be considered an endangered species.
To do this the player has all the resources of the Zoyon Patrol at his fingertips. The game goes to the main menu which has a number of options.
Before you play you choose a difficulty. Beginner mean you have lots of information, no false calls, and you are only chasing 1 of 8 possible Zoyons, all of which have lots of data. At Intermediate, some of your calls might be fake. There are 24 possibly targets, and some of the information is not complete. In Master mode you have 40 zoyons, lots of false leads, and lots of missing data. In Grand Master you have the ultimate Challenge: Tying to catch 2 zoyons at once. In each mode you get a $10,000 budget.
1. READ MESSAGES: You get a numbered message, with a name, address and borough. The message indicated somebody saw a Zoyon. They may mention food they saw it ate, or a behavior they observed. You also get message from Observer you sent out, of the Science team, of hints and notes from Mayor Baldwin.
For each call you may either Get More Information or Verify the Information. At the earlier stages, getting more information is more important, because only when you have a good amount of information can you identify the correct Zoyon is Part 2. At the harder stages, you should verify suspicious information, and get more information from sources that look good (since you can only do one or the other).
2. IDENTIFY ZOYON: Here you can enter various characteristic including Color, Cover (or Coat), Ears Shape, Eyes Color, Taxonomic Family, Digit per Foot, Height Range, Tail Type, and Weight Range.
As you enter more information the game shortens the list of possibly Zoyons. Beginner mode starts with 8, Intermediate 24, and Master and Grand Master modes 40. As you enter information the game reduces the list. Then you can read a description, and view its habits (i.e.: Elecoon have been known to play with swings. Quackerat thumps its tail when happy.) From this information you can determine what Zoyon you are dealing with, where it live, how big it is and what it eats, and then you can try to trap it.
3. ASSIGN TEAMS: Here you can Get Status of you Teams, Send out Science Team, Set a Trap, Check a Trap, Move a Trap, Release Tracking Animal, Send Out Observers, or Cancel Observer Assignments. You have one science team that cost $500 and gather information you only get from them such as family and number or digits. You can set a certain number of traps each of which costs from $100–500, depending on type and size. There are net, enclosures, and burrow traps, ranging from 20 to 72 inches, and can be baited with any for up to 8 baits ranging from Bananas to Pepperoni Pizza. Observers cost $50/hr. and interview people to get more information (but only work from 8am-5pm). The tracking animal the Lempel, a specially trained Zoyon that loves to play with other Zoyons and it's fitted with a radio collar so it can be tracked anywhere in the city.
4. USE REFERENCE LIBRARY: Here is lots of data. There is information in maps, a glossary, metropolitan information, staff information, and trapping information.
5. GET A STATUS REPORT: This screen tells the date, the time used so far, the budget, and remaining budget, public opinion, which borough the Lempel is in, weather, temperature, pressure, time of sunrise and time of sunset.
6. TAKE A BREAK: This allows time to speed up very fast, so that messages accrue, the Zoyon moves, the observers move, and so on.
7. QUIT: Quit the job/game. Also allows a save game.
A score of 60,000 points appeared as "Perfect!" This was possible only at the Grand Master level.