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@antrad 20 Years of playing, and I didnt know that there was any difference between colors of units as far as their strategy, I will have to investigate some more, thats interesting......

posted in Machines read more

OMG, you got that right!!!

I never ran up against that limit because the AI is so poor in skirmish mode that I win every time lol.

One of the only shortcomings of Machines. A real shame. It almost as if the skirmish mode was an afterthought.

posted in Machines read more

Friendly fire is a risk if you dont plan your attacks the right way. And honestly, I gave up on skirmishes a long time ago, I ALWAYS win, there's no real challenge. I recommend you start at a lower tech level, it seems your enemies don't ever catch up to you tech wise. I've attacked with advanced weaponry and they're still way behind, I just blow em right up. One of my only complaints about the game is the lack of any real fun in the skirmishes. I use them to experiment. LOL Maybe you cant build nukes in The Controller, but for some idiotic reason you can build an aerial factory, underground, which is basically useless.

posted in Machines read more

Finger, indeed. You get to use the ion cannon, its strategic

and accurate use will make all the difference.

You start out well equipped, with a brainbox tech! Use these

steps in order to estabilsh yourself.

  1. Research the Triple plasma knight and then the ion cannon.

The brainbox is fast on researching the plasma knight..

Send a couple of reapers and your knight southeast to

skirmish with the enemy. Start making reapers.

  1. Have the healing commander stand ground and low


  1. Make double plasma knights until the triple knights come


  1. Use ONE transporter. Make a Scavenger, a Mek, and another

brainbox. Assign the brainbox to the civilian research

academy and get that bigger transporter researched.

  1. Make a builder, and build a SAM turret just south of the

machine gun turret, close to the cliff face but not too close

to that pit, it gived the enemy wasps a chance to sneak up

and destroy them.

  1. Position the first reapers to come online in a circle

behind the medium combat factory, high initiative/stand

ground. Also send a knight or two.

Ok, aside from enemy attacks from the southeast, its that

area behind the factory that becomes important. An aerial

APC brings turret reapers for a mass attack. They will fight

your reapers and knights and leave the factories alone if

you're prepared. A SECOND wave that is larger will arrive

very shortly. If you have circled the area with reapers you

should be fine. Once that's over, move your combat units

southeast. As soon as you can build the big transporter, do

so, it will accelerate your mineral amount greatly. Recycle

the smaller ones.

Meanwhile, attacking forces from the southeast will arrive.

Once the airdrop attacks are done, concentrate your attacks

toward the enemy base. Get the triple knights up quickly.

From here, it's a war of attrition. Send small squads down

the map, destroying whatever you can. The FP triple knight

is critical here, again. You may want to mix in a few triple

rocket knights too, the enemy uses this unit to great effect.

In fact, the enemy very deviously sends one to slip around

the right flank of your base which can do a lot of damage if

its not defended.

Speaking of which, there are relentless aerial attacks by

wasps and bees. SAM turrets wipe them right out but watch

out because other units, if they infiltrate your base, can

destroy them. As in many other levels, even though the enemy

has a satellite uplink it seems that the ion cannon acts as

if there's only a beacon, i.e. it only strikes where the

enemy units have penetrated the FOW. Interesting.

As far as YOUR ion cannon goes, once you've gotten near the

enemy base you can see what units are prepapring to attack.

Use the ion cannon to attack their formations. You will find

that as you get closer to the enemy base, the enemy starts to

produce vortex eradicators instead of gorillas. STOP them

before they get close to your base/units. Also, make your

primary ion cannon target the enemy's aerial factory, as

these units do the most harm to your attacking forces. After

that, destroy the heavy combat factory with it. Everytime

you take out a factory, though, the enemy goes to rebuild it.

Except, oddly, the aerial combat factory.

The enemy pod needs to be destroyed to win, it's the only

objective in this level.

Additional Thoughts:

  • Build an aerial combat factory if you want to, I have found

that the aerial units you produce are helpful but not vital.

Be sure to eliminate the enemy's SAMs first before you bring

them to the enemy base.

  • If you can, send a knight all the way east from your base

to penetrate the FOW so you can see when that sneaky rocket

knight tries to flank you on the map.

  • Scavengers are very useful here! Have one mop up after the

airdrop attacks, and keep one to the southeast, although they

do tend to get destroyed.

  • With your FP knight, lure the enemy ground units into the

fire of the eradicator and the bees.

  • You can do a little flanking yourself with the knights,

taking them over the water, out of range of most units, and

attack the enemy base from the south.

  • Once you have a foothold in the enemy base, destroy all

builders and the civilian factories. No more rebuilding!

  • The builders take shelter in the garrison, you can enter it

with a FP knight and eliminate them.

  • I have had limited success with the big rocket turret.

Friendly fire is a real risk. You can use it to protect

against the flanking attacks from the east.

posted in Machines read more

Still playing, in the midst of The Controller now! Hard to believe 20+ yrs later.

posted in General Discussion read more

Espionage and Kidnapping

To be truthful I 'skipped over' this level all the time on replay. There are some interesting challenges, and some neat tricks you can pull.. thanks to your JUDAS!

You don't have to research or build it, yay! But you'd BETTER keep it alive. Thats why you have a healing commander, use it well and you'll have some real fun here.

Move your units north, eliminating the turret with the reapers first. Move up and the hallway to your left will start to send enemy units to you. If you position wour reapers on stand ground/high intiative, you can use the Judas in FP to capture a rocket knight and some turrets reapers if you're really good. Watch out for the machine gun turret to the north of that hallway entrance or use the reapers to take it out.

Heal everyone. Work your way around the map clockwise,the other way will annilhate you. You will first encounter a bolter knight and a plasma tank. But there's a turret there so if you're going to try judasing them both, you risk the turret tearing them apart. Lure them by heading back to where you came from and reversing your view in first person.

As you advance you will encounter a small squad of reapers. You can have the other units fight while you try and judas a few, carefully please. No judas, the party's over!

Advance north, and as you come around to where the commanders are, a few reapers and a knight come along. Do the best you can, if you use the judas keep it in FP mode. Mind the turrets guarding the area where the commanders are, destroy them.

Now, heal everyone again, and save the game. The hallway that leads south is tight! Run the Judas up in FP. Keep it alive, and capture at least one commander. It gets thricky as the first commander you capture starts to get shot at by the other, and they can kill each other, game over. Then, get the healing commander up and heal everyone.... just in time for another attack by the enemy. A few reapers and a knight attck from the east, see if you can judas the knight. Oh, and once you've treacheried the commander, your judas is expendable. The commander is NOT!

The best thing to do is walk your squad back the way they came. No resistance and no turrets, when the captured commander returns to the start point it's over and you are victorious.

Additional thoughts:

  • If you want a real diversion, and you have two rocket knights, you can try this after capturing the commander and eliminating the last enemies. Using the rocket knights in FP, continue around clockwise to where the two plasma turrets are in the hallway corner (do NOT go straight into that eastern room its full of turrets). They will work at your shields first, so if you're quick and you can get off a few shots, you can take turns with the two knights, letting their shield recharge between passes. Then, you can just take everyone south and use a big shortcut.
  • Except for the tank, the enemy uses no plasma weapons.

posted in Machines read more

You know, now that I think of it, the enemy doesnt have or build even a locator beacon... am I correct? That would explain the ion cannon. Then again, in Military Fortress you dont have a locator beacon and you can see through FOW where youve been.... interesting.

Sometimes the scripting gives or takes an advantage away from either side. E.g., Take the Pass, where you can't build SAM's because that would obliterate the wasp attacks. Or Research Facility where you can't build knights... or any builders :-)

posted in Machines read more

You're right; I tried again and yes it appears to be a proximity thing. Whats interesting about the ion cannon is once it fires, your base area, if it was closely approached by the enemy, is fair game for it too. Which is weird because they have the satellite uplink and could hit you regradless. The same holds true in Finger of God, it seems the uplink is for show lol. The AI acts as if it is just using the location beacon.

posted in Machines read more

Oh I remember this like it was yesterday. It was the summer of 1999 and I wanted a new PC game. I was one of the lucky people with a graphics card that had a 3dfx ship in it; you could not play the original game otherwise.
It was only later on that I discovered how to use FP mode. For weeks, I was stuck on Behind Enemy Lines and I was jubilant when I got it done.
Every time I play that level I rememeber how frustrated I was lol.

posted in Machines read more

Reclamation of Talonthia 8

This is a challenging level. It takes a bit of work but it can be easily beaten with the right strategy and some patience.

Start out by assigning your techs to the labs. I use 3 in the military and one in the civilian lab. Research whatever you can, but dont worry about the heavy assault units yet.

You only have the little transporters. Recycle them, make two larger ones, and build the medium combat factory. Research and then build triple plasma knights and as many plasma reapers as you can.

Build another smelter just to the south of the one you have so the mines can be serviced. Build mines on the two deposits at the east of your base. Use one transporter there and another at the northern mine. You will run out of minerals to the north quickly so you can swing the other transporter over to service one of the mines.

Right to the east of the starting mine, at the NW of the base area, build a SAM turret; this is for later on, and if you can, build another near the western most mineral deposit.

Okay. You have two things to worry about - the walkway to the east and that darned hill to the west. here's how to handle that:

  • Take a large group of plasma reapers to the eastern walkway, include a knight. Position the reapers in a semicircle just north of the walkway entrance. High initiative, stand ground except for the knights.
  • Build a missile turret or two along the base of the hill to the west. Position reapers here too, but don't stand ground.
  • The minute you get a triple plasma knight online, send it over there too. You will need them there first. If you have enough, you can send some to help guard the east- Build a scavenger and send it east too. If it survives you will pick up a lot of resources.
  • Replenish reapers, trying to distribute them equally between the two places.

First you will have a small nuisance attack at the west by some turret reapers and a few missile knights. You can take care of this easily with a Plasma knight and a few reapers. Then the party starts; TWO gorillas, a knight or two and reapers... accompanied by a squad of wasps. Do the best you can with the Knights, using the circling first person tactic. I have dusted them all with a single kinight, though it took a while. The wasps will get torn apart by the SAM you built; use the Knight to lure them over there.

The key to this strategy is guarding that entrance from the walkway. Don't let the enemy infiltrate the base from the east while you're battling it out at the west! This has happened to me, and after I finished with the gorillas/wasps I lost a mine and a few units. Now that that's overwith, there are two ways to proceed:

  1. Keeping up your production, fight your way up the walkway. You will regain control of a big smelter and a satelite uplink. You will also get to the factories to the north and regain control of them too. Again, Plasma reapers and triple knights. The enemy medium and heavy assault factories are at the NE corner of the map as well as an aerial factory. If you use this strategy, build your own aerial factory and maybe a heavy assualt factory at your base or just regain control of the northern factories. Use wasps to help kill, and get an APC or two to get units deployed quicker.

  2. Much more fun and risky- Research up to the aerial units and factory, build a behemoth mek and recycle it. Now, using two or three Eagle APC's (faster than the shark only less capacity) Load up Transporters, builders and knights. Reapers wont be useful here, leave them and the base and take everything, first to the SE corner, and then slide up the east side of the map, clear of any combat units.
    You will arive at an island of sorts where the aerial factory, two mines and a smelter are located. SPREAD OUT all combat units, the enemy is getting ready to use the Ion Cannon! Capture the aerial factory and smelter and get your minerals going. Your old base might be obliterated but you have a new smelter. You can build a factory here and make knights but I'd wait until the ion cannon is eliminated. You don't have to capture the mines here yet, just start mining.
    Across the water to the west from here, you have several things to deal with. Make missile wasps, and take the knights one at a time, destroying the factories on the western shore. Avoiding the missile turret, make sure to hurry up and get those factories out. If you get killed bring another knight across the water. Get a wasp to take care of that turret.
    Now, as soon as you can, post a single knight near the pod. The Ion Cannon nails the closest combat unit to it. Load a constructor on an APC and wait for the ion cannon to fire, then deploy the constructor to capture the ion cannon, then the big smelter, and then the uplink. Build a medium combat factory here if you can, you will need knights.
    Once this is done, using the knights and wasps and whatever else finish up by eliminating the enemy and the their combat factories.

Additional thoughts:

  • I don't know what the trigger is for the ion cannon to suddenly start attacking. It seems to be getting within a certain distance of the pod, or it may be on a timer. Anyone?
  • Deconstruct all buildings and mines you upgrade or stop using. You don't need the really big transporter, so stop research there and send the tech to the military research lab.
  • If you pursue strategy #1 the AI will alter its strategy and focus on the invading force.
  • At the top of the hill there is a substantial (for this level) mineral deposit. If you've built the behemoth you can build the bigger mine and use the bigger transporter to keep the minerals flowing. For some reason, after the double gorilla attack the AI doesnt approach from the west anymore. Interesting.

posted in Machines read more