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Vortex Rikers is a map in Unreal.

The map marks the beginning of the series. As a prisoner, your transport ship was enroute to a prison moon. Some unknown gravitational source pulls the vessel to the mysterious planet. You awaken to find the rest of the ship dead and your cell gate deactivated. You are free from your prison; however you must find a weapon, some ammo, and some health while trying to find a way off the ship.

Weapons and items Edit

WeaponsEdit

Weapon Count Ammo Weapon Location Ammo Location
Dispersion Pistol 1 - Near a broken computer, on the Skaarj trail. -
Automag - 2 - Over some ledges in the main control room.

ItemsEdit

Pickup Count Location
Translator 1 Upper prison floor, right next to the lift.
Bandages 1 At one of the prison toilets.
Kevlar Suit 1 In the slippery floor cargo bay.
Flare 1 Upper prison floor, in one of the broken cells.
Health Pack 7 1x Upper prison floor, at one of the cells. 1x Fan room, behind a breakable glass. 1x slippery floor cargo bay. 1x Main control room, near a lift. 1x Medical bay, near the computer. 2x Restricted area, in front of a glass.

Monsters Edit

None.

Walkthrough Edit

You start looking upwards, then your character automatically looks down. To your right is your iron bunk bed, and behind you is a toilet. This is the most for furniture in these cells. Alarms are still ringing throughout the ship. Distant screams can be heard, but nothing in the local proximity. The cell door in front of you is open; the gate has been deactivated. Instead of starting with the normal 100, you start with 12 Health due to being heavily damaged during the crash. To make matters worse you are unarmed and will need to find a weapon. Walk into the corridor that connects your cell to all the others to set off a voice
Vortex Rikers05:08

Vortex Rikers

warning of your escape. Nobody comes to stop you from escaping. Explosions are erupting in the prison cell. The cell across from yours has a prisoner crushed by a rafter. Walking to the next row of cells results in another shake from the ship; this one simply makes you loose your balance though and does not send you into a wall. The body to your right has been mangled apart in an odd fashion. The cell to your left hold a roll of Bandages over a toilet with blood inside. Continue to the final pair of cells on this floor. The left cell is empty, while the top bed in the right cell has collapsed. A book is on the lower bed in the right cell, but you are not able to read it at this time. Ash's body is lying to the left of the elevator at the end of the corridor. Ride up the elevator and then turn around to reach the upper floor of the prison. Collect the Translator from the dead guard and drop back down to the lower floor.

If you wish, you are now able to read the book mentioned in the previous paragraph[1]. Cross the corridor to a darkened doorway with a lever on the right side. Push the elevator to go down to the execution room. Go to the right around the benches that monitor the execution and head for the computers to receive a message[2]. The majority of the room is blocked off by a force field with an electric chair and prisoner on the opposite side. By pressing the computer the execution process will activate; starting by the use of electric bolts firing from the prongs while creating explosions in the proximity. The bolts shall strike the body of Prisoner 853, James Cavanaugh, thereby executing his body as it explodes into a multitude of gibs.

Return to the second floor of the prison. Read the computer screens to the left and right of the elevator if you wish[3][4]. Follow the left side corridor first. The first cell has a corpse and a moved bed, but nothing of importance to you. The second cell has a beam partially blocking the entrance, another corpse, and a panel loosely hanging from the ceiling. A Flare can also be found in the second cell. The third cell is mostly empty besides a book on the lower bunk[5]. Return to the elevator and follow the right side corridor. Collect the Health Pack from the first cell on the right side. Continue along the right side, but be careful as the troffer will collapse and can possibly kill a player too close to the edge. It will also gib a body and collapse a floor piece up ahead. Continue to the second cell on the right side to read a book on the floor[6]. Continue to the final cell on the right side, which contains nothing interesting besides the fact that the lower bunk bed has a shifted position. A couple of messages shall come through telling you that various prisoners are "escaping" as their plasma gates have been broken. The door at the end of the corridor is locked, but a vent on your side allows you to press on.

Turn right and then left. The lights in this part of the vent are flickering on and off. As you walk in these vent sections you can hear fans spinning. You also might hear growling or human screams. Turn left once more to look down the next piece of vent. A corpse can be seen lying against the left wall. Up further is an ominous green lighting. A piece of piping can be seen at the far end. Beside the piping is an odd figure that does not look humanoid in appearance. As you walk closer to the figure the ground shakes and the pathway in front of you explodes. When the fire clears the creature has disappeared. Continue down the corridor until you reach the end. The green lighting is coming from some smoke emitting from small pieces of piping. Luckily it does not appear harmful at the moment. Keep following the vent, turning left at each end until you eventually reach the bridge.

As you enter the bridge you will hear a warning that you are entering a restricted location. At this moment the music will also start. Carefully step onto the rafter to the right by crossing diagonally to the opposite side. Follow the rafter to the right to pick up two Clips on small lights overlooking the floor below, then return to the bridge. Walk over to computer station A1[7]. While most of the computers are functional, one of the monitors is only displaying static. Continue to the central computer station with the captain's chair[8]. The navigator still lies dead in the chair beside station B2 to the right. However, as you approach he will awaken and scream in pain before truly dying. Stand beside the monitor to read the navigator's log if you wish[9].

Go through the door to the far left to enter the armory. The floor in this corridor is reflective, thus you can see your character model. It is also very slippery due to a polish, thus causing your character to slide around this area. Collect the Health Pack between the two crates. Continue to the area at the end of the corridor. To your left is a great number of closed lockers that cannot be opened. In the middle of the room is a Kevlar Suit behind a forcefield. To reach the Kevlar Suit simply jump and hit your head on the button nearby. Follow the corridor to the right and drop at the end. This is an elevator that allows for access back into the armory in the case that you happened to fall when on the lower floor. Go through the door to the right to access the lower floor of the bridge.

Besides a piece of the floor from the bridge being slightly tilted downwards, this area seems pretty stable. Going down the stairs you find yourself with two doors, one to the left and right. Each have been barricaded with crates to prevent further travel, but you can look into the right room to see a glimpse of the otherwise unaccessable crew berths. Continue past the broken rafters that you climbed on earlier to collect a Health Pack. Drop off to the left to reach the lower floor. If for any reason you wish to return simply use the elevator behind you, otherwise continue to the corridor straight and to the left of you.

As you walk through the next hallway another explosion will rattle the ship and cause you to shake as well. Be careful as there is a loose wire swinging from the ceiling to the left side that can instantly kill you. Pass it by walking to the right side by the pool of blood. Another pool of blood lies by the left wall a little further up with a litter of organs. Continue down the corridor to reach the med lab. A dead victim is hanging from the rafter above your head. To your right is another victim who died helplessly on the medical bed. The medical hologram next to the bed has been shattered and pieces of glass lie on the floor. All the medical beds have some degree of blood on them. The ones to your left are even more graphic, one was a person that was crushed by a rafter and the other a mangled foot. Go to the computer station to read the medical log[10]. Collect the Health Pack beside the station, then turn around and go through the door opposite the side you entered on to access the cargo bay.

Once again a warning will sound that you are entering restricted territory. The door will lock and you will not be able to return to the med lab. Turn right at the end of the small corridor to enter the next room. A corpse hangs on the railing to the floor below straight ahead. Red warning signs can be seen to the right beside a pile of crates and the doorway to continue through the ship. To your left are two large fans, both moving at a slow pace. Follow the railway on your floor to the left and at the end turn right. Collect the two Health Packs in an alcove to the left beside a wall of glass. Follow the corridor to the end and go down the ramp to the right. By this point the music should have stopped. To your right is the empty cargo bay. As there is nothing else in this room continue through the door at the far left to reach the next corridor.

The door ahead of you is locked. To make matters worse the door behind you locks as well to confine you to this small room. Suddenly you will hear growling on the other side of the door. Crew members start to question the noises. A blade will suddenly be protracted and you will hear a few thumps. The crew will start firing at the creature, light from the guns can be seen under the small crack under the door as the door was not shut fully. The crew members will start grunting as one by one they get slaughtered by the beast. A heartbeat music track will start playing as you get nervous about the creature on the other side. Suddenly the door will open to reveal the creature, perhaps the same one you saw in the vent, who runs away as it sees you. Gibs will also be seen settling on the floor. Blood lines the corridor. Step into the corridor and turn left at the end. Corpses have been flung every which way in the room, some lying on top of crates. Bits on blood can be seen on the wall beside the holographic panel on the same wall as the entrance door. To your right is a group of lockers, many of which have been covered in blood. Continue down the corridor and grab the Dispersion Pistol, something to arm yourself against the creature! Follow it down the corridor, which has nothing interesting but one tilted arch about halfway down it, and turn right at the end. The creature has managed to evade you, as indicated by the start of the music once more. Start to go down this corridor. About halfway down the corridor you will see an officer who got split in half by the shattering of a computer monitor to the right. Continue down the corridor and turn right at each end to come to the engine room (Area C).

The door to this room has already been busted open. To your right is a first aid station with another Health Pack that can be reached by breaking the glass. The door to each the opposite side of the room is to your left, but it is locked. Two fans can be found in this room, one on each side of the door. However, the right fan has been broken allowing for safe entry to the opposite side. To the right is a computer station[11]. Press the button between the computers to lower a cargo lift to the upper floor on the opposite side of the room from the door. Jump onto the lift whilst evading the crate and let it once more go to the upper floor. A pile of crates can be seen stacked to the right and behind you. Behind you is another door that has been blocked by broken rafters, this is the opposite side of the door that was blocked by crates on the lower floor of the bridge. Walk forward to the door with the signs for Area B. A corpse lies on the ground beside the door. The ship will tremor once more as you walk towards the door. Besides a group of crates to the left this area is mostly empty, so continue forward to reach the chief security guard's station. Above the entrance is the serial number of the ship.

As you enter this room the music will stop. To your right is another computer station[12]. Shoot the glass panel to the left with the label "In case of emergency break glass" to open a hatch door in front of you. As you look through the hatch you can see metal flooring of the passageway below. Drop through this hatch to finish the level.

Quick Level Completion Edit

  • Enter the main corridor
  • Go up the elevator to the second floor of the prison.
  • Take the right side path and enter the vent at the end.
  • Follow the vent to the bridge.
  • Drop down to the lower floor.
  • Drop down once more to the area to the right.
  • Follow the corridor to the med lab.
  • Go through the door and cross the room to the right.
  • Go through the door and wait in the next room.
  • When the door opens, run through the corridor until you reach the engine room.
  • Jump into the fan shaft to the right to reach the opposite side.
  • Press the button to lower the cargo lift.
  • Get on the lift and get to the upper floor.
  • Go through the door to Area B.
  • Follow the corridor to the chief security officer's station.
  • Break the glass to open a hatch door.
  • Drop through the hatch to get to the next level.

Difficulty DifferencesEdit

UnrealEdit

GalleryEdit

TriviaEdit

  • The creature seen throughout this level is a Skaarj Warrior. Though you get quick glimpses of it, you do not get to fight these enemies until the Depths of Rrajigar and thus it isn't counted as an enemy in this walkthrough.
  • The toilets in the prison cells were converted from meshes into brushes so that the player would have a better collision with them.
  • The seats in the bridge (and any other seats using the same model) used a stone texture.
  • A grate in the crew berths is connected to a grate near the start of the vents.
  • There is a small room between the upper floor of the engine room and the lower floor of the bridge, even though both doors are blocked and thus the player never can see it without cheats.
  • The UMS Bodega Bay was another ship made by the UMS, yet that ship was built for military purposes instead of being a prison vessel.

Development Edit

  • A radar screen was supposed to break by the navigator's station on the bridge, but the game never defined the condition to cause the effect.
  • Due to the low quality of the textures the panels were mostly illegible. Thus Epic Games did not care about placement and put the texture facing any direction they wished.
  • The German version of Unreal censored a great amount of the atmosphere of this level. Not only are gibs gone and screams cut (which was the same for the rest of the game) but the execution room and the Skaarj-officer fight were removed as well.

Real Life References Edit

  • The computer stations (and any others using the same model) were based on CRT monitors of the time. CRT monitors were very new technology when Unreal was released, yet did not become the future of computing that Epic Games envisioned as LCDs have since surpassed CRT models.
  • The Vortex Rikers was named after Rikers Island, the main jail complex of New York City.

Glitches Edit

  • The textures in the prison cells are cut off slightly as the texture is too big for the cell walls.
  • If you do a lift jump at the right moment, it is possible to skip picking up the Translator.
  • The Skaarj Warrior in the vent is not completely covered by the explosions in OpenGL.
  • If you are quick enough at the part when you see the Skaarj Warrior run down the corridor, you can get the Skaarj to attack you if you are fast enough to get in his way by leaping.
  • When the music loops, it is played at the wrong speed because of the faster heartbeats beforehand.
  • The corridor just after the Skaarj Warrior encounter has an unaligned texture, as the Unreal Engine has difficulties aligning textures that do not intersect on a straight plane.
  • The cargo lift is extremely difficult with enemy or bot pathing. As it starts at the top they have to be intelligent enough to press the switch and then wait as it lowers. To make matters worse the ramp to get onto the lift is smaller than the lift itself, causing bots or enemies that walk towards the lift to get caught in one of the side corners if they were to go in that direction. Enemies following the player usually just patrol the engine room if the player is on the cargo lift. If they successfully walk on the ramp they still have to understand to move around the crate that is at the front of the elevator to enter and exit the elevator.

Pre-ReleasesEdit

1995 BetaEdit

  • The 1995 storyline described something similar to the Vortex Rikers, but the player had to open the door to the cell themselves. A closet could be found that would give the player a shotgun. To exit the ship the player would press a switch to open a large metal door that showed some light underneath it.

1998 BetaEdit

  • The 1998 beta starts with the player having 100 health only to have it brought down to the regular 12 health by an explosion inside your cell.
  • The lower floor of the prison block is flooded with a thin layer of water.
  • To gain access to the upper floor of the prison block the player would use a computer to the right of the elevator that would lower the elevator. It would give a message saying "Access permitted".
  • There is a differently textured bridge.
  • There is a regular floor in the armory instead of a reflective polished one.
  • There is more gore and blood in the med lab.
  • The cargo bay has a machine that looks like a telescope that opens a panel that holds the two Health Packs.
  • An iron bar falls in the room before the Skaarj Warrior encounter instead of the door locking, allowing players that jump access back to the cargo bay.
  • There is no door seperating the engine room into two sections, only another fan.
  • The button to call the cargo lift is square instead of shaped like an I.
  • The cargo lift is just a ramp that raises and lowers instead of being an actual lift.
  • The entrance to the chief security officer's station is completely covered by a sheet of glass.
  • The button that opens the hatch in the chief security officer's station is diamond shaped instead of shaped like an I.

References Edit

  1. Universal Translator: "Benjamin Nathaniel's Diary, day 93: Today is my birthday. I will celebrate by attempting to start another prison riot."
  2. Universal Translator: "Prisoner 853, James Cavanaugh ready for electrocution."
  3. Universal Translator: "ATTENTION ALL PRISONERS: Remember, be kind to your cellmate. Violence will not be tolerated."
  4. Universal Translator: "ATTENTION ALL PRISONERS: Lights out at 20:00. No exceptions."
  5. Universal Translator: "Boris Clague's Diary, day 3: I have been here but 3 days and already I have two cracked ribs, a fractured thigh, and fourteen stitches. I don't know if I'll make it to the prison moon, much less to the end of next week."
  6. Universal Translator: "Jonas Gershwin's Diary, day 204: There was another roach in my lunch today. I wonder how they make it on board starships such as this one. If that bitch in cell 4A keeps looking at me funny I swear I'm going to rip out her larynx!"
  7. Universal Translator: "First Officer's Log: Vortex Rikers. The prisoners have become more restless as we get closer to the prison moon. Security says they have the prisoners under control but several have had to be taken to the med lab for treatment."
  8. Universal Translator: "Captain's Log S. Kroon: Vortex Rikers. Altering our course may have proven detrimental to our mission. We are caught in the gravitational field of an uncharted planet. I have ordered the engine foreman to divert power to the drives."
  9. Universal Translator: "Navigator's Log: Vortex Rikers. We are on route to the prison moon. Long-range sensors are detecting uncharted magnetic masses in Gamma Sector 83H. The Captain has ordered a change in course."
  10. Universal Translator: "Chief Medical Officer's Log: Prison Vessel 254 Vortex Rikers. The constant fighting between the prisoners seems to be getting worse. At this rate, I will be out of supplies long before we reach the prison moon."
  11. Universal Translator: "Engine Foreman's Log: Prison Vessel 254 Vortex Rikers. I am juicing up all the power I can to escape from the gravitational pull of this mysterious planet. It doesn't seem to be working."
  12. Universal Translator: "Chief Security Guard's Log: Prison Vessel 254 Vortex Rikers. They've pulled all the power to the drives to no effect. We're spiralling towards the planet. I don't know what's going to happen to us."

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