You star in this gamebook as Sean Calibre, a renowned Field 4 Private
Investigator. This first book in the series begins with your latest
assignment: to secure a stolen experiment, namely the 'Globesphere',
and return it to Federation custody.
The Private Investigation Bureau, although not directly controlled by Federal
authorities (unlike the armed and police forces), is nevertheless a fully
subsidized, licensed branch of law and order, and therefore entrusted to
administrate itself responsibly. The main difference is that where a soldier
must obey orders without question, the PI is virtually free to secure his/her
mission objectives by any lawful means necessary, without the constant
scrutiny by superiors (but a report update is sometimes necessary, depending
on the importance of the mission). PI identification often proves a powerful
tool throughout the Federation, and cuts swathes through painstaking yet
frustrating red tape imposed by regional jurisdictions.
PI acceptance of given assignments are not compulsory - yet refusal could
damage a member's reputation. A points system based on completed, failed, and
rejected assignments determines the plus-minus factor. Those able to maintain
an overall performance level above the low water mark are guaranteed a safe
career; indeed, the higher the better, in regards of retirement bonus.
However, if the notch falls ridiculously low (into what is jokingly termed the
'sediment') then that person is no longer considered a PI! Although quite an
informal outfit compared to others, the PIB still has its rules and standards.
Fields of Private Investigation
Anybody without a criminal record can become a Private Investigator, providing
they have some experience of the law, and a considerable amount of money saved
for capital required. You have three years training background with the Police
Academy, and spent another five years as a fully-licensed Private
Investigator. Your knowledge and skills have served you well in past cases,
building up your reputation, thus promoting you well up to Field 4. Further
explanation of the known 'Five Fields' of Private Investigation are listed
Field 1 - Federal Surveyor: Such Investigators usually hail from a more
academic background, such as ex-lawyers. Generally deal with the lower and
middle classes of the public, offering information or advice. They gather all
sorts of clues from various contacts who keep an eye on the streets. Surveyors
are normally assigned to 'missing persons cases'.
Field 2 - Security Monitor: Monitors are those employed by corporations
and possibly smaller companies, on a temporary basis. Usually, they help solve
cases such as theft or arson within the business itself, where employees are
suspected. Monitors act as Security Officers, and doubtless armed. They have
access to all but the most restricted of corporate records.
Field 3 - Multiple Security: These Investigators are hired by the most
important and wealthiest industries, and rich family cartels, thus a previous
record of having served in the Police Force is therefore desirable. However,
if that Investigator was previously a Monitor (Field 2) they may be promoted
to Multiple status. Such Investigators are expected to cope with several
cases at the same time. Possession of a weapon is compulsory. All security
privileges are endowed to Multiple PIs, who have more authority than Monitors
to make arrests.
Field 4 - Trained Satellite Investigator: Used for the 'tough jobs',
these are Investigators more disposed to a single case under a provisional
contract. Usually, these missions entail infiltration of criminal bases,
covert operations, etc. Therefore, a previous training record of the Academy
and/or having served in a Police Force is essential. Such Investigators are
certainly armed and fully-licensed to kill if necessary. Provided this factor,
Satellite PI cases are evaluated by the Government besides the PIB (Private
Field 5 - Mercenary: Certainly a former member of an elite military
unit or covert organisation, therefore this Investigator is a true expert at
infiltration, sabotage, unarmed combat, and the ability to endure very long
term operations. However, such men are rarely found; unlike other
Investigators, they do NOT belong to the PIB, but are in possession of
various licences and permits issued exclusively by the Federal Government
itself. Heavily armed and equipped.
You - and some opponents - have an ARMOUR score. For you, it starts with a
value of 6, but may rise or fall
throughout the game. It represents your
chances of damage sustained in combat being reduced by half.
To begin with, your armour consists of a lightweight flak
jacket, boots reinforced with metal strips and a pair of metallo-cloth gloves that
ensure your safety against all known virulent and acidic chemicals.
In this adventure, there are two categories of combat: hand-to-hand and firefights.
They are conducted in the same way, the only difference being the weapon in use.
When you select a firearm and click on USE, you are choosing the weapon that you
will use in subsequent firefights; when you select a close combat weapon and click on
USE, you are doing so for hand-to-hand combat. You start out with a Government 480,
a standard issue handgun to law enforcers, and a titanium bladed knife.
4th September, 2202
...Only a week ago the Globesphere made disconcerting news. The device wasn't
in government or military possession at the time, so it hit community tabloids
like a kiloton train at full speed. Details regarding the Globesphere were
sketchy, but New Scientist made an educated speculation surrounding its
sonorous name: it had to be a doomsday weapon of some kind. Coupled with von
Rhein's employment background with weapons research, and sprinkled with
alarmingly high casualty reports from the Hippsteen War, it was the only hunch
that made sense. The Federal government, realising they couldn't keep a lid
on the situation, let tabloid bloodhounds loose in an attempt to unnerve
those responsible. The terrorists laid low, the stratagem backfired. Matters
were beginning to escalate, and officials, now apprehensive of full-scale
panic, sought other, more subtle means to recover the doomsday device before
terrorists could implement its awful vengeance. Sending a detachment of troops
would be too heavy-handed for such a difficult problem - so they got in touch
with the PIB...