Sgt Slaughter's Mat Wars
Copyright/Publisher: Mindscape, Release Year: 1989, Genre: Wrestling, Number Of Players: 1

"ATTEN-HUT! Listen up, you wet recruites. I'm your new sargeant and you can call me Sargeant Slaughter. So ya, think ya got what it takes to make it in my platoon, heh? Well, I seen scrawnier wrestlers than you, but none as inexperienced. You got a lof of work to do, skinny.

" What you're s'posed to do in this game is win, and I mean win BIG. You'll start out fighting punks in some puny arenas. If you start winning, you'll gey your shot at some bigger guys in some more high class joints. Finally, you'll get the chance to drop the world champion in the Coliseum. Win dat fight, and you got braggin' rights over the whole troop.

"This here's a little training manual to help you learn the ropes - that is, when you're not being thrown into 'em. HA, HA, Ha - that's a little wrestling' humor, there. Anyway, read it and learn it. some of the moves can get pretty complicated, and if you're not up on 'em your opponents will be down on you. HA, HA, HA - I love dem jokes. So good luck and remember - the Sarge ain't got no mercy for WIMPS.

What You Need
* Commodore 64 or 128 computer (in C64 mode); 64K minimum
* Disk drive
* Color monitor or TV
* Joystick

Loading Instructions
1. Plug your joystick into Joystick Port 2.
2. Turn on your monitor, disk drive, and computer.
3. Insert the disk, label side up, into the disk drive and close the drive door.
4. Type LOAD"*",8,1 and press RETURN.
5. The game will load and the title screen will appear, followed by the manager's screen.

The Ground Rules
"Let's get on to the good stuff - like blood and guts! HA, HA!"

"When I wrestle there's only one ground rule: my opponent's gonna be on it! HA, HA, HA!"

As the Sarge explained earlier, you goal is to wrestle your way to fame and fortune in three of the grittiest arenas around. You have to win the championship at each ring before you can move on to the next. If you win at the Coliseum level, you are the undisputed wrestling champ. The three arenas are:

The Bullpit
This is your starting ground. The clientale is sleazy, the place reeks of stale smoke and onion rings, the winning purse is never going to make you rich, but it will buy you a couple of nice leisure suits. Besides, you gotta start somewhere!

Entry cost: $1,000 per fight
Winning Purse : $25,000

Wrestle World
Well, you're moving up in the world, but not too far up. The fans here aren't as bad as at The Bullpit; they only throw fresh garbage here. Plus, there arean't as many known felons hanging around. Still, this is far from where you dreamed you'd be and now your hospital insurance has gone up. You really need that prize money now!

Entry cost: $1,000 per fight
Winning Purse : $500,000

The Coliseum
Finally, the Big Time. All of the greats have wrestled here and now you're going to join their ranks. The place smells of money: the spectators only wear genuine cubic zirconium and the finest in fake designer sportswear. A victory here and you can write your own ticket - maybe even get an endorsement gig for jock straps or something. You want this one REAL bad.

Entry cost: $1,000 per fight
Winning Purse : $75,000

Note: Your $1,000 entry fee will be returned to you whenever you win a bout. Lose a bout, and kiss that grand good-bye.

Choosing a Manager
"Behind every successful wrestler is... a pair of shorts that are ridin' up on him. HA, HA, HA!"

To make it big in this sport, a wrestler needs a smart manager. Well, you won't find any of those here, but you will find some pretty greedy ones who will do anything to see you make it to the Coliseum.

When the manager's screen appears, you'll be given a choice of one of five managers. Each one has his or her own distince "management style" and set of scruples. Below is a list of the managers and some of their characteristics.

She may be the only woman, but she's hardly a lady. Dolores tends to get overwhelmed at auctions and isn't as fast on the bidding as she should be. However, she also uses her feminine wiles to get other managers to give her better odds or place more mney on bets. Dolores believes in training her wrestlers personally!

Fast Ed
Usually when you're ugly everyone still says, "But, he has a great personality." Not Ed; he's ugly and nasty. Ed likes to scare off other bidders at the auction which means he usually gets a good price on his wrestler. However, his unpleasant personality makes it hard for him to place bets because the others don't trust him. Not even Ed's mother could love this face.

Big John
A former wrestler himself, Big John loves everything about the sport - especially the big bucks he can make off of other wrestlers and the Surf and Turf Special that they serve at The Bullpit every Tuesday. Big John is easy-going and does alright in both bidding and betting on the wrestlers. Unfortunelately he lacks the "killer" instinct to really get ahead. He's just so darn nice.

Abdul Makask
That kooky Abdul, shunning the spotlight again. He's broken more cameras the Sean Penn. He is very aggressive at auctions, and likes to throw around his family's oil money. The other managers don't trust him, especially since his face is always covered up. Consequently, they don't like to place bets with him or watch him use his veil for a handkerchief.

Lucky hasn't been, especially with Dolores, but he keeps trying. Lucky is a real people person and is very popular - with the local police, that is. But as long as extradition laws are shaky, Lucky can stay one step ahead. Since he needs to keep a low profile, Lucky makes middle-of-the-road bids and bets and tries not to make any waves.

Select one manager for you by moving the arrow cursor over the character's picture and pressing the fire button. You'll now take the role of that manager whenever bidding for fighters, betting on fights, or fixing fights.

Buying A Wrestler
"You know my motto - buy American!"

You'll see a picure of the city and then be taken into one of its seedier haunts - the Action House. This is where you get your wrestler. You will also go into the Auction House whenever you move up to a different wrestling arena.

At the beginning of the game each manager is given the sum of $15,000. This money is used first to purchase a wrestler and later to bet on or to fix fights.
Note: The minimun amount of money that your manager must have is $1,000, which is the entry fee for the lowest level ring. If your income drops below this, you will be declared bankrupt and the game will be forfeited.

One wrestler will be offered for bidding. Your goal is to outbid the other managers on the first wrestler. Doing so means you get your wrestler with his highest energy level. If you don't outbid the others on the first wrestler, that wrestler will be offered again, but his energy level will be decreased from the original.

Note: Be sure to check your wallet before you try to buy any wrestler. You may not have enough money to buy a wrestler on the first ground, and you'll have to settle for a later round buy of a wrestler with a lowered energy level.

Press the fire button to begin the auction. The screen will display the wrestler, his name, and the opening bid that the Auctioneer is asking. To bid on the wrestler, press the fire button to enter a bid that is $100 more than the last bid given. The Auctioneer will acknowledge all bidders by name and the amount, so you'll know whenever a manager has given a bid.

If the Auctioneer gives three prompts and no other manager has given a higher bid, the Auctioneer will accept the last bid given and the wrestler will be sold to that manager. When your manager buys the wrestler, your bank account is immediately reduced by the amount paid for the wrestler.

These managers are out for themselves, so be quick with your bids. Otherwise, those greedy bums can run up the price on a wrestler causing you to lose a lof of cash or get a 90-pound weakling as your wrestler.

After your manager has bought a wrestler, press the fire button to go on. You'll see the street scene agaib, with a closeup of the arena where your man will be fighting. At this point you will be instructed to flip the disk. Take the disk from the drive, turn it over, and reinsert it with the label side down. Then press the fire button.

Events Poster
"You could say I'm an artist. I love to see faces on canvas, especially after I've shoved 'em into it! HA, HA, HA!"

The fight poster now appears on the screen. This gives a list of the wrestlers and who they will be facing in the next match. In the upper left hand corner, your manager's name appears along with the name of his/her wrestler and the amount of money he/she has. At the bottom of the screen is an options menu. Move your joystick to highlight the option you want and press the fire button. Each of the menu selections is explained below.

When you're ready to get down to some rasslin', tasslin' business, highlight this word and press the fire button. You'll go directly to the wrestling arena and your next bout.

Making money is the name of the game, and what better way to do it than to make a few side bets on your wrestler. Besides winning the championship for each of the three arenas, this is the only other way to make money. Therefore, it's essential you make bets to win money that you'll need in the other arenas.
Note: You can only bet on your own wrestler's match, not on any other wrestler.

When this option is chosen, your opponent's manager appears on screen with your manager. If his/her man is ranked higher than your man, he/she will ask you how much you wish to bet. Press the fire button and then your manager will respond with the minimum bet of $100 dollars. To change that amount, move the joystick back to increase the amount by $100 or forward to decrease it by $100. (There is a $500 limit on bets.) When the amount shown is what you wish to bet, press the fire button again.

Depending on the manager's personality, he/she will offer you certain odds on the fight. Press the fire button and your manager will respond with "It's a deal, Punk" If you want to accept his/her offer, simply press the fire button when this message appears. However, if you want to reject the offer, push the joystick up to change your manager's response to "Forget it, Pal." Prss the fire button when you want to close the deal.

If your man is ranked higher than the opponent, then the betting roles are reversed and you must offer him odds, while he will offer an amount of the bet which you must accept or reject.

Once you have accepted a bet, the BET option will be unavailable until the next fight. All outcomes of bets lost or won will be announced by the Sarge after each fight when the results are given.

When you want to see how the wrestler's stack up against each other, move the joystick to highlight this option. Next, press and hold the fire button to get current ranking of all of the wrestlers. Your wrestler's name will be highlighted. Note: Your wrestler will always begin the competition in last (sixth) place.

You can fix matches other than your own. This option is handy when you are approaching the top of the rankings and wish to force future opponents out of the running. You can save yourself a fight or two by studying the rankings and the current match poster. The drawback of this option is that it is usually pretty expensive and can't be afforded unless you've done well on previous bets.

When you want to fix a fight, highlight this option and press the fire button. A message from the Sarge will appear, and the first wrestler's name on the fight schedule will be highlighted. Move the joystick up or down until the wrestler you want to lose is highlighted and press the fire button. Note: Your wrestler and his opponent cannot be chosen.

That wrestler's manager will appear on the screen and tell you how much he wants for his/her wrestler to lose the match. Press the fire button and your manager will automatically say "It's a deal, Punk." If you don't want to pay that amount, move the joystick up to change the response to "Forget it, Pal." Press the fire button once you have made your choice and you will be returned to the Events Poster. If you made the fix with the other manager, you'll notice that your bankroll has been decreased by the amount needed to fix the fight.

"I like to take out my opponents in two hits. I hit 'em once and then they hit the mat. HA, HA, HA!"

After the FIGHT option has been activated from the Events Poster, there will be a short disk load. The wrestling ring with the two fighter then appears and the fight immediately begins, so BE READY, YOU YOUNG WRESTLERS.

The strength of your wrestler is proportional to the starting price asked at auction. Your wrestler's strength is shown in the upper left panel of the screen; his opponent's strength is shown in the upper right panel of the screen.

If you are stunned by your opponent, it is possible to regain your control by shaking the joystick quickly from side to side. The faster you shake the joystick, the quicker you regain control of your wrestler.

In each fight there are four different levels of moves that you can make against your opponent. These moves are activated when the fire button is pressed. Without the fire button pressed, you can move the joystick to make your man walk in all direction: up, down, left, right and diagonally.

Each level of moves can only be reached by succeeding at the previous level. Each level is described below.

By moving the joystick in the designated direction and pressing the fire button, the following moves can be made:

[UP] - Punch (or jump out of ring if against ropes), (or Turnbuckle Fly if opponent is in the corners)
[RIGHT] - Run
[DOWN] - Knee
[LEFT] - Elbow (behind)

If you hit your opponent three times within a set time, you will stun him. Once you stun him, the Level 2 moves immediately become available as long as your opponent remains stunned.

Again, by moving the joystick in these directions, the following moves are possible:

[UP] - Body Slam
[RIGHT] - Run
[DOWN] - Pile Drive
[LEFT] - Throw Into Ropes

Though the Pile Drive and Body Slam can always be executed on an opponent, they will only markedly reduce his energy if you have an energy advantage over him when you go to use these moves. A successful Pile Drive or Body Slam will automatically progress you to Level 4 moves; a successful Throw Into The Ropes will progress you to Level 3 moves.

Another move you can make at this level is to throw your opponent out of the ring by body slamming him when you are near the ropes. You can then jump out of the ring by pressing the fire button and pushing up on the joystick.

You can fight outside the ring before the countdown reaches zero, otherwise you will be disqualified and lose the bout. To return to the ring, simply stand beside the ropes, push up on the joystick, and press the fire button.

By moving the joystick in the designated direction and pressing the fire button, the following moves can be made:

[UP] - KO Punch
[RIGHT] - Run
[DOWN] - Bend Down (Flip your opponent if he is running)
[LEFT] - Elbow (spins you about face automatically

The Elbow here is different from the basic elbow in that you automatically turn to elbow in the direction you were originally facing. Thus you don't have to perform the move from behind your opponent, but rather whiler you're facing him. A successful move at this level will knock your opponent to the mat (and take you to the final level of moves).

By moving the joystick in the designated direction and pressing the fire button, the following moves can be made:

[RIGHT] - Run
[DOWN] - Pin To Mat
[LEFT] - Drag To Standing Position (back to Level 2 moves)

If you drag your opponenty to his feet, you shift back to Level 2 moves, giving you the opportunity to deliver some more punishment and really wear the bully down.

The PIN will only be successful if your opponent is at a very low energy level. Otherwise, he'll be able to throw you off.

If you run into your opponent, you will more than likely stun him (and maybe yourself as well). However, if you run into the ropes first and then rebound, you will have access to the moves in this level.

The fire button must remain pressed or you will drop back to your previous level of moves. By then moving the joystick in the designated direction (while keeping the fire button pressed), the following moves can be made:

[UP] - Flying Pin
[DOWN] - Clothesline

Once one of the wrestlers has been pinned, the Sarge will come on the screen and begin the countdown. If by the count of three the pinned wrestler is still on the mat, the match will end. Press the fire button to continue.

The Results
"Did you get hit that hard, or were you just born that ugly? HA, HA, HA!"

After the match ends the result is posted on the screen. From this point, press the fire button and Sargeant Slaughter reappears, along with the events poster. Press the fire button again, and Sarge will tell you what the outcome was on all of the fights. After viewing this, press the fire button and the Sarge will tell you if your manager won or lost money on your side bet.

If you still have money, the new fight schedule appears and again you'll be able to access the menu options. If you no longer have enough money to qualify in any of the arenas, then you'll be tossed out on your bruised and bloody ear. So much for your brilliant career!

Glossary of Wrestling Terms
Body Slam - Throw down your opponent from above your head.

Clothesline - Hold your opponent on your extended forearm.

Flying Pin - Leap into the air and come down to pin your opponent.

Pile Drive - Drill your opponent head-first into the canvas.

Pin - Hold down your opponent so he is unable to make a move against you.

Turnbuckly Fly - Jumop from the turnbuckle (ring corner) onto your opponent.