Low Earth Orbit is a level in the award-winning video game The Operative: No One Lives Forever. It is the 11th mission of the game and follows Cate Archer traveling into outer space in order to retrieve an antidote sample from H.A.R.M.'s secret space station. The level is an immediate continuation from the previous mission and is followed by the last briefing and training level of the game: Good Luck and God Speed.
Once aboard the H.A.R.M. space station, you must ascertain where the antidote is stored. Your space suit should mask your identity to some degree, but don't expect guards to be fooled. If you see anyone with a weapon, either avoid him or dispatch him.
When you've retrieved the antidote, you can start thinking about how to get back to earth.
First things first.
Mission Summary Edit
Secret H.A.R.M. Space Station
A space guard named Fiskell is sent to inspect the rocket that just arrived as its crew hasn't disembarked yet. When Fiskell enters the rocket, Cate apprehends him and enters the space station's mezzanine. The station consists of five levels, the lowest of which contains the "Top Secret Labs". The entrance to this area is blocked by a large laser barrier which must be shut off in the main control room on the top level. A security pass is required to gain clearance to it and one can found lying on the counter of the mezzanine's Space Lounge.
On her way to the security sector, Cate finds a code breaker and a specialized laser gun which vaporizes its victims. While hacking into the security systems (which are spread over two rooms), various conversations between scientists can be heard suggesting that there is a meteor shower headed for the station. Cate must now proceed to the bottom area and run to the labs before the meteors destroy the access tunnel.
Having reached the Top Secret Labs, Cate must act quickly as the meteors continue to damage the space station. She finds an antidote sample in a lab room accessed via a turbo-lift. Cate then flees in one of the escape pods just before the entire space station explodes.
- Due to its setting in outer space, the mission may have been inspired by films such as the 1968 motion picture 2001: A Space Odyssey, the 1979 James Bond film Moonraker and the Star Trek and Star Wars franchises.
- This mission demonstrates H.A.R.M.'s incredibly advanced and futuristic framework, boasting a highly developed space program even two years before the Moon Landing.
- Owing to standard procedures before lift-off, you cannot select your weapons before the start of the mission, let alone bring any at all.
- H.A.R.M.'s Director, disguised as a drunkard in a green suit, makes his final cameo appearance in the game. He is seen again in the final cutscene just after the endgame credits.
- There appear to be several civilians aboard the space station especially in the Space Lounge. The only plausible explanation for this is that they also work for H.A.R.M. employed in different capacities to the guards and scientists.
- The barman in the Space Lounge can be killed without failing the mission
- Two scientists can be heard exchanging pleasantries and kissing intimately. As soon as Cate enters the room they continue with their work pretending as if nothing happened. An intelligence item can found in which another employee complains about their licentious behavior.
- When activating the 3rd person view cheat (cheat code - mpasscam), you can see that Cate is not wearing a space helmet even though she had one on when she boarded the rocket. This could be the reason why the guards recognize her immediately
- In Scene 2, there are two ways to get out of the shaft once the turbo-lift comes crashing down: either jump across the beams along the shaft walls, (some of which collapse under your weight), or simply shoot at the red light on the "Emergency Ladder" sign at the top of the shaft for a faster escape
- In a conversation between two scientists, it is mentioned that there are only enough escape pods for twenty people. As there are only eight of these to be seen in Scene 2, the remaining twelve must be scattered around the rest of the station, which would explain how The Director survived the space station's destruction.
- The scenario of having less escape pods than passengers is not unlike that of the sinking of the RMS Titanic in 1912, causing the deaths of some 1,500 people mainly due to a significant lack of lifeboats
- It does not matter which escape pod you take; entering any one of them after having retrieved the antidote, will complete the level. This means that the intelligence item you find in one of the pods can only be collected before the antidote is retrieved.