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    FAQ/Walkthrough by kurrupt

    Version: 1.2.1 | Updated: 12/04/03 | Search Guide | Bookmark Guide

                               /////FAQ Info///////////////////////////
                             /////Author: kurrupt////////////////////
                           /////Date: 01/09/02 -> 04/12/03/////////
                          /////Game: Commander Keen 1/////////////
                         /////FAQ Type: Ship Parts FAQ///////////
                        /////Version: 1.2.1/////////////////////
    1 Table of Contents
    1 - Contents
    2 - Intro
    3 - Legal Stuff
    4 - Version History
    5 - What's Going On?
    6 - The Guide
    7 - Cheats and Tips
    8 - Closing
    2 - Intro
    I have written this guide because I feel that I have a good knowlege of Keen 1
    and I wanted to share it with the world.
    3 Legal Stuff
    This document is copyright 2002 kurrupt and may not be sold or
    copied in part or in full without my permission. If you want to put the guide
    on your site or in a magazine or whatever, just e-mail me, I'm a reasonable
    guy, I'll probably say yes.
    WebSites that this guide is allowed to be on are,
    4 Version History
    Version 1.0 - The first version of this FAQ includes everything,
    for now.
    Version 1.1 - I have just updated the Tips section, added some Thank Yous and
    sorted some spelling errors.
    Version 1.2 - I have sorted some spelling, updated the Thank-Yous and updated
    the Legal section as well
    Version 1.2.1 - Just some mistakes I noticed that I had to sort.
    5 What's Going On?
    I figured that since most people that are using this guide will
    not have their game manual so I'm going to put the story and the
    controls. Here's the story............
    ~            COMMANDER KEEN
    ~                 in
    ~     "Invasion of the Vorticons"
    Billy Blaze, eight year-old genius, working diligently in his backyard
    clubhouse has created an interstellar starship from old soup cans, rubber
    cement and plastic tubing.  While his folks are out on the town and the
    babysitter has fallen asleep, Billy travels into his backyard workshop, dons
    his brother's football helmet, and transforms into...
      COMMANDER KEEN--defender of Earth!
    In his ship, the Bean-with-Bacon Megarocket, Keen dispenses galactic justice
    with an iron hand!
    ~   Episode One: Marooned on Mars
    In this episode, aliens from the planet Vorticon VI find out about the eight
    year-old genius and plan his destruction.  While Keen is out exploring the
    mountains of Mars, the Vorticons steal vital parts of his ship and take
    them to distant Martian cities!  Can Keen recover all the pieces of his
    ship and repel the Vorticon invasion?  Will he make it back before his
    parents get home?  Stay tuned!
    The Bean-with-Bacon Megarocket was constructed from objects around the house
    that you have "modified" into starship parts:
    	 JOYSTICK (from your brother's video game) Manual flight control.
    	 CAR BATTERY (from your Mom's car) Electrical systems power.
    	 VACUUM CLEANER (from the kitchen, heavily modified) Ion propulsion
    unit (with carpet height adjustment).
    	 EVERCLEAR (from your Dad's liquor cabinet) Fuel.
    The Vorticons have taken these pieces to the far reaches of Mars and are
    guarding them.  You must find the members of this Vorticon outpost and wrest
    the parts back from their wicked, clawed hands!
    Unbeknownst to NASA, when the Viking Lander settled to the surface of
    Mars, it caused a major political upheaval.  Viking actually landed on the
    despotic Martian king!  The Yorps (the extremely friendly one-eyed
    Martians) were free from enslavement, and the Gargs (the vicious, aggressive
    Martians) were angry.
    The Martians created robots for menial work and guard duties.  Beware of the
    tank-like Guard Robots--they are VERY good at what they do.
    Martians have been visiting Earth in UFOs for decades.  Why?  They come to
    Earth for one reason--THEY WANT OUR TOYS.  Hula hoops and skateboards are
    holy objects to them!  Who knows...you may find some toys useful!
    There are signs everywhere.  You haven't been able to decipher them yet....
    ~        THE ADVENTURE BEGINS...
    Your task is before you.  Go get 'em, Commander Keen!
    Here's the controls..........
    Left or 4 on the numeric keypad = Go Left
    Right or 6 on the numeric keypad = Go Right
    Alt = Toggle Pogo Stick
    Ctrl = Jump
    Ctrl+Alt = Shoot Raygun
    Spacebar = Status Screen / Pause
    F1 = Help
    F2 = Toggle Sound
    F3 = Configure Keyboard Controls
    F4 = Set Up Joystick
    F5 = Save game (at level select screen only)
    Up or 8 on the numeric keypad = Up
    Down or 2 on the numeric keypad = Down
    Left or 4 on the numeric keypad = Left
    Right or 6 on the numeric keypad = Right
    Home or 7 on the numeric keypad = Top-Left
    Page Up or 9 on the numeric keypad = Top-Right
    End or 1 on the numeric keypad = Bottom-Left
    Page Down or 3 on the numeric keypad = Bottom-Right
    Ctrl or Alt = Enter level
    Spacebar = Status Screen / Pause
    6 The Guide
    *** If you are having trouble finding any of the levels, try my Ship Part
    Map on GameFAQs.com ***
    The Pogo Stick
    The Pogo Stick is a really useful, yet almost non-essential item. I recently
    played through the game and found out that you only need to use the pogo stick
    once. You need it in the last level to get to the Vorticon's lair. But even
    though it is only necessary once in the game I tend to use it quite a lot in
    my strategies for the levels, so it may be a good idea to pick it up sooner
    rather than later.
    The Pogo Stick is in a dome shaped level just to the North-East of the level
    where you will find the battery. For more help finding it check out my map on
    GameFAQs.com. This level is a really huge non-event, and if you need help
    completing it, you need help. As you will see when you enter, the layout for
    this level is basically a giant pyramid, made up of silver cylindrical blocks,
    simply climb to the top of the pyramid, grab the Pogo Stick and head out of
    the door on your right.
    The first level that you will encounter a vorticon in is in the level with
    the joystick. The level looks like the first level, and is directly north
    of a small dome shaped level.
    This level is relatively easy to find the ship part in. From the start begin
    to jump up the giant stairs collecting the lollys as you go. Then jump across
    to the second highest platform and run along, jumping over the gaps and grab
    the yellow keycard. Now go through the yellow door above it and run along
    and jump down the large stairs. At the bottom jump the gap to dodge the
    monster. You should now see an open area which is divided  by a platform,
    go on to of the platform and dodge the traps to get the red keycard. Go
    back and then go right along to the screen boundary. Now jump up and keep
    going left until you reach the vorticon boss.
    This Vorticon is simple, just jump over to the first step of the pyramid and
    dispatch 4 shots into the vorticon, you must do it quickly or it will
    kill you. Now walk forward, through the red door, grab the Joystick and
    get the hell outa there.
    ***Note*** I was recently playing this level and I noticed something odd, the
    Vorticon will rarely, if ever (I can't recall it ever doing it) jump up above
    the first step in the pyramid. It is therefor possible to simply stand on the
    second step of the pyramid and fire shots at the vorticon every time it jumps.
    Just remember that to use this safer method, you will need a lot of charges as
    it can be hard to time your shots to hit the Vorticon.
    The battery is found in the level directly west of the last level (the one
    with) the Joystick in it. To me, the level looks like a big silver robot.
    In comparison to the last level, this is a reasonably complex level. in this
    level I recommend that you go and kill the Vorticon straight away, this means
    that you won't complete the rest of the level and then run out of charge for
    your Raygun, to kill the Vorticon with. To get to the Vorticon, simply walk
    right from the start of the level, jump over the green spiked pit and jump up
    the red steps on your right. As you go up the steps, you will see a large
    stack of golden cylindrical blocks, begin to jump or pogo stick up them until
    you reach the top. Jump through the purple bar and continue to ascend the maze
    -like structure, remember that you can only jump through the long rectangular
    purple blocks, and not the square shaped ones. When you reach the top, on the
    right of the screen you should see some green cylinders jump onto them and
    continue to do so until you reach a large red block, jump up onto this, and in
    the usual way, just put four shots into your vorticon friend.
    As you will no doubt notice, the battery is behind a red-keycard door, but
    never fear, as I will lead you to this keycard. Use your pogo stick to jump up
    onto the purple cylinders that are above your head. Now just carefully jump
    between all the purple cylinders, until you reach the very left of the screen,
    now drop down and collect the yellow keycard. Just so you know, im not
    colourblind, but you need the yellow card to get the red one.
    Fall to the right of the platform you are on and after a brief fall, you will
    land on yet more cylindrical blocks, although this time they are red. Now fall
    STRAIGHT down to your left, do not hold left in the air or you will die. When
    you land you should be on two more red cylinders, fall off to the right and
    this time keep holding right, the more perceptive of you will notice that you
    are right back at th start of the level. Continue on in the same way as you
    did to get to the Vorticon, only this time continue to head right after you
    see the gold cylinders. Continue walking right until you hit the yellow door.
    Jump up and unlock the door. You should now see a two-eyed monster, drop down
    and quickly kill it (wait until it is on the right hand side of its'
    'enclosure' before you drop in). Jump up, grab the red keycard and re-trace
    your steps up to the golden cylinders.
    Once you arrive at the golden cylinders climb up them, and then up the purple
    maze thing, and then finally jump up onto the green cylinders, just as you did
    at the start. Since the Vorticon has been killed, just jump up to where it was
    and stroll through the red door, grabbing the battery and exiting the level.
    The Vacuum Cleaner can be found in a an Ice themed level, right beside the
    warp point on the dark side of Mars. This is a reasonably easy level to find
    as you will walk straight into it as soon as you warp to the dark side of the
    As this is an ice themed level, you must remember that on some surfaces you
    will have very little grip and on some others once you step onto the ice you
    cannot change your direction with out the help of your trusty Pogo Stick.
    As you start the level, jump up onto the white square on your right and then
    jump up onto the platform on your left. Walk along until you see a gap in the
    roof, Pogo up it to the right and then jump up again to the left. Walk left
    and jump up and left again so that you are landing on an l-shaped block. Jump
    up, walk along and Pogo up and to your left. Once you do this you will see a
    rectangle made up of 3 blocks of ice, jump onto it, jump to a similar one on
    the left, jump again to the right and once more on your left. You should now
    be standing underneath a large tower of blue cylinders, jump (or Pogo) up
    these and when you reach the top, walk left and fall down the small hole. You
    will grab the red keycard, don't worry about the robots, they cant shoot you
    unless you fall off your perch. Now jump back up the hole and run to the right
    until you begin to slide on some clear ice, keep sliding right and then drop
    off it and begin to slide left. Once you have done this you will be on the
    same level as the Vorticon. Be careful, it is very slippery. walk right and as
    soon as you see the Vorticon, fire as many shots into him as you can, if you
    need to retreat, give yourself plenty of space to do so as it is slippery.
    Once you have killed him, simply slide through the red locked door, grab the
    penultimate ship part and exit the level.
    The Everclear Fuel is found in a level to the very south of the dark side of
    Mars. To locate the level simply walk south from the last level (the Vacuum
    Cleaner level) until you hit a wall, then head west and you'll find it no
    problem. To me, the level looks slightly like a large deckchair, but I'm sure
    it is meant to be some type of castle. If you have trouble finding it you can
    always check my ship part map on GameFAQs.com, and that should make things
    As soon as you enter the level, walk to your right and jump up onto a white
    bridge, continue along it and drop off the other side. Continue to your right
    until you come to a large set of stairs, made of ice. Climb up them and then
    jump onto the platform on your left. Walk left until you come to another,
    smaller set of steps. Climb up them and then Pogo up to the highest platform
    you can reach, walk along it to the right and jump up onto the platform above
    you and go along that to your left. You will now see a single block of ice
    attached to the wall, jump up onto it. you will see that there is a blue
    Keycard sitting above one of the evil one-eyed robots. You cannot kill these
    robots, so you will have to dodge it. You will see that it patrols its little
    enclosure, going left, right, left and so on. It will occasionally fire a
    shot, and after it does this it will always change direction, so wait until it
    fires a shot to the right and then turns to go back to the left. This is your
    best chance of getting the keycard. Run, jump and grab the Keycard, landing
    behind the robot, which will be moving to the left, jump to the right again
    and quickly drop down back onto the platform above the large ice stairs.
    Jump up and this time to the right and carefully walk to the end of the
    platform, quickly tap Ctrl to stop dead on the ice above a hole in the roof.
    Pogo through it and to the right. Walk along and drop off the edge of the ice
    block-platform, holding left to hug the wall. You will land on a small light
    blue square. This bit can be tricky. Jump up onto another similar light blue
    block to your right. Now you will see 2 light blue blocks, jump onto them and
    then up to your left onto the small L-shaped block of ice. Pogo up and to the
    right, through the blue keycard door, dismount your stick and walk along, now
    climb up the large ice block stairs. When you reach the top, you will see a
    block of clear ice and a small pushing robot on it, this robot cannot hurt you
    but it can annoy very easily. To avoid this, simply wait until it is heading
    away from you and jump up onto the ice and pass it, before it turns round.
    Walk along until you hit a wall and you will see some blue cylinders above
    you, pogo up onto them (This is the only place in the game you NEED the Pogo
    Stick for).
    You will now be in the boss' lair. I feel I must establish some basic things;
    > The Vorticon cannot hurt you unless you jump into its enclosure.
    > You cannot kill the Vorticon with your gun.
    > The 'pillars' made of ice can be walked or jumped through.
    > There are invisible floors inside some of the pillars.
    I will now tell you the easy way to destroy the final Vorticon. You will see a
    lone block with a tall pillar on top of it. Jump onto the block, and stand
    still. If you look closely you may see a white pixel to the right hand side of
    the pillar, this signifies an invisible block. Jump onto it, and don't worry
    about falling off because it extends all the way to the wall on the right, so
    it is a very easy target, once you know it is there. Jump up again to another
    invisible block directly above you. Now keep jumping and moving right until
    you land on a large grey rectangle, held up by a chain. Shoot the chain with
    one shot and the large grey weight will fall down, crushing the vorticon. Now
    just jump up to the right to where you see the door, grab the Everclear Fuel
    and exit the level. Enjoy the ending sequence!
    If for some reason you like to do things the hard way, you can always try to
    beat this boss the idiot's way. It's a pretty big challenge, but with a bit of
    luck you can pull it off. To do this harder route of the level, follow all of
    the steps to get to the boss' lair and then once you get there follow these
    directions instead.
    Once you are in the boss' lair walk right up to below where the Vorticon is
    and stand right against the wall, don't worry, the Vorticon cannot drop down,
    But you can jump up. You need to wait until the Vorticon is on the right side
    of it's enclosure before you jump up, or you will have no time to dodge it.
    Once it is on the right, you must jump up and stand there waiting for it to
    turn around. When he does, you need to wait until you think it is going to
    make a large jump for you, and when it does, you need to make a mad dash for
    the right hand side of it, passing right under it. If you timed it correctly
    you will make it into the hole, where again the Vorticon cannot drop into.
    Once you have done this, simply follow the tunnel around, collecting the
    Teddy Bear. Once you get near to the door, jump or pogo over it to grab the
    Everclear Fuel, because if you don't you will fail the game as there is no way
    to go back into the level and get the Everclear Fuel once you have completed
    it. If you do manage to complete the game this way, congratulations! It isn't
    7 - Cheats and Tips
    Hold down the buttons G-O-D for God mode, the SuperJump cheat and no clipping
    in the main level. You will need to enter the cheat every time you enter/exit
    a level. To use the SuperJump cheat, just take out your Pogo Stick and hold
    down Ctrl to fly.
    Hold down C-T-Spacebar for the Pogo Stick, all four Keycards and 100 Charges
    for your Raygun. Again you will need to re-enter this cheat every time you
    enter a level.
    If you know of any more Cheats, or tips on hex-editing the game (I used to be
    able to do this), drop me a line.
    > To stop quickly on ice, tap Ctrl
    > You can kill normal Vorticons with four charges
    > There are lots of hidden blocks in the game, all you can see of them is
      their upper-left pixel
    > You get an extra life every 20,000 points
    > You Pogo Stick Higher while Holding Ctrl
    > You will see lots of signs written in an 'alien' language called the
      Standard Galactican Alphabet and when translated, these can give you clues
      about the game. Here is the Standard Galactican Alphabet in (terrible) ASCII
    A = _|
    B = _\
    C =   |
    D = __
    E = | '
    F = -----
    G = --|
    H = ---
    I = |
    J = '
    K = .|.
    L = |
    M = ' |
    N = ||
    O =   |
    P = ||
    Q = ___
    R = ' '
        ' '
    S = |
    T =   |
    U =  ' '
    V =  _|_
    W =   '
        '   '
    X = '/
    Y = ||
         / \
    Z =  | |
    Therefor, a sign reading:
    |                     |
    |    ____   |   | '   |
    |    __         |__   |
    |      --   |         |
     Would translate, DIE, meaning that there is danger nearby.
    > There is a secret level in on the dark side of Mars and you can find it
      either with the clipping cheat or by finding the hidden warp point in the
      level which looks like the exactly like the level where you get the second
      ship part, only this time on the dark side.
    > There is a second pogo stick located in the last level, in the most
      South-Westerly point in the level.
    8 - Closing
    Thank Yous
    > Id Software (For making the game)
    > Apogee (For publishing the game)
    > Me (For writing the guide)
    > All the guys in the 'Mars, I can't believe im still on Mars' topic on the
      Keen 1 Board on GameFAQs.Com:
    >>>> LSDboy (The topic creator, who without knowing it, inspired me to write
         this guide)
    >>>> ShadowN64 (A great guy, who has encouraged me along the way)
    >>>> Scizor CT (For recommending DosBox to me, and nagging me to visit the
    >>>> And everyone else who has posted on the topic
    > All the guys at the PCKF (For keeping Keen alive)
    > CJayC (For posting my guides on the excellent GameFAQs.Com)
    > Bernd Wolffgramm (For hosting my guide on DLH.Net)
    > Krushull (For hosting my guide on gamers-realm.Com)
    > Stephen Ng (Of IGN for hosting my guide)
    > The staff at gamenotover.com (For hosting my guide)
    > Villa Software (Creators of ScreenThief)
    > Vedran Gaco (For creating the exellent program, GWD Text Editor)
    > You (For reading this guide and keeping Keen alive)
    The Public Commander Keen Forum
    I decided that I should just give the PCKF a quick plug and tell all you
    Keeners to join the community. The URL is:
    I think that thats all I have to type. Just keep playing Keen and I'll see you
    on GameFAQs.Com or the Public Commander Keen Forum!

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