The Let's Play Archive

AI War: Fleet Command

by RockyB

Part 17: CPA, redux

Shameless Plug. A post on the AI War forums just reminded me that Pablo Vega put up a piano rendition of some of his best tunes, starting from just $1. I highly recommend it

Location: Miknei

So, while we were doing our raid earlier the AI attacked Miknei with about 1,500 threat ships. Our fleet is down there now doing cleanup work.

We've got about five minutes before the CPA hits, let's see what the current threat situation is. The usual clusters, nothing massively worth going after to clear up before the CPA. The 600 on Quimel is mostly fighters, which aren't worth chasing down. The 500 on Yarzarmas on the other hand might be worth doing some pre-emptive cleanup on.

Location: Yarzarmas

A botnet golem, human shadow cruiser and a load of drone spawners walk into Yarzarmas. 500 threat rapidly explodes, along with a fair few hybrids. Polarizers are one of those weird ships that can be fairly devastating if targeting the right thing (i.e. heavily armored golems), but aren't much use in the AIs hands when shooting at drones.

One second before the CPA. The fleet is split, with the majority on Oorto (including botnet and regen) as a fast response force and the remainder guarding the ASC on Savkeael. Hang on, is that nomad one hanging off Ifice?

Location: Nomad One

Remember this?

There was a second part to that message

Looks like we have a new target.

CPA fires. Combined with the existing threat fleet that's around 10,700 ships out for blood. But they'll take a little while to get here.

Scouts are on Nomad One. They report finding some find of beacon, which costs a seriously outrageous 500,000 energy to bring back online. I've never tried to do this before actually, so I have no idea what's going to happen if I do.

Other points of interest are the munitions boosting command station, which gives all enemy ships on the planet +100% attack, along with a tractor and disassembler guardposts.

Also, that whole 'random wormhole links to other planets' thing works both ways. After travelling through the nomad our scouts are able to penetrate a little further into AI territory. Most interesting thing is a spire civilian leader on Lokin.

Location: Ifice

The AI starts things off nice and gently with a ~500 ship attack on Ifice. Well, it was always meant to be a bit of a speed-bump world.

A couple of waves are syncing up with the CPA, taking the total attack up to around 13,000 ships.

Here's a slightly different filter for you, showing how strong my defences are on each planet. This includes fixed defences and mobile ships, hence the large spikes on Oorto and Savkaeal.

If we change the filter to just mobile military strength we can see our fleets and how they stack up against all the AI ships (including the AI guardposts). This can be handy if you want to get a rough estimate of how hard an AI planet will be to take - see Hasquon as compared to the (neutered) Tolgartol.

Note the 10k drop in strength on Oorto – that's how good our fixed defences are. Looking at this filter we can see that over on Durxuha the botnet golem is taking advantage of the waves to make some new friends, while we're fairly significantly outgunned on Sucje at the moment. As such part of the fleet (i.e. the stuff that's good at killing missile frigates, which is what the Sucje wave is comprised of) is being redirected there from Oorto.

Scouts go out to get us a threat update. Worryingly there are almost 6,000 ships sitting on Larji with a strength of 46,000. Based on that we can say with some certainty that Savkeael (~18,000 strength) is going to be targeted very soon. Time to start moving our (~26,000 strength) fleet into place to be able to defend it.

Location: Doneha

The wormhole links for Nomad One have updated again as it slowly moves through the galaxy. Now we have direct access to both Lokin and Doneha. And what d'you know, Doneha just happens to have a data centre on it. It also has an advanced factory, which is something to consider for the future.

Looks like the threat on Larji got scared off by our fleet being in position to reinforce Savkeael and is instead moving elsewhere. As they are retreating through Cavesuozing I predict that they'll likely be showing up on Yarzarmas in about five minutes or so. Of course that's a guess, with maybe 60% certainty. Other than that there's some threat on Tolgartol which might be worth taking down, especially seeing as we neutered that planet a while ago so there are no guardposts to worry about.

An assault transport delivers six raids to Doneha, who then take out the data centre. A couple of raids survive that and manage to make it through to Lokin, where they also take out the civvie leader. We're back down to 139 AIP.

Location: Tolgartol

1,500 threat ships on Tolgartol, a perfect killing ground. The fleet on Miknei warps in. Every single enemy ship dies, and thanks to the regen's ministrations and the leeches we actually come out of it with 250 additional ships. Plus about 350 zombies from the botnet, who immediately rush off to attack other AI worlds.

Just before the fleet leaves an EMP guardian spawns in from an AI reinforcement pulse. This is bad, as it means the AI now has EMP guardians. Possibly unlocked when I hit 200AIP earlier. EMP guardians only show up on diff 8+, and these guys paralyse any non-EMP immune ship or structure for 20 seconds every time they enter or leave a planet. You do not want your fleet unable to fire for 20 seconds, much less your fixed defences. Instant kill-on-sight targets.

Location: Miknei.

Looks like the rest of the threat has resurfaced, although honestly I'm not quite sure how they got here. I have it feeling it might have been a warp relay. 6,000+ mixed ships are now on Miknei and the fleet is dashing to the rescue. What few friendly ships are on the planet at the moment are zombies from the Botnet's previous foray. But the area mines at least are having a significant impact.

The closest Martyr we have is on Zivu, and is guided in our champion. The temporary forcefield ability is used to ensure the Martyr closes to within maximum destructive range.

After the Martyr explodes 3,000 attacking ships are left. Just in time for the fleet to arrive and mop up. The regenerator golem is heavily damaged but she keeps on churning out a constant stream of rebuilt recently deceased ships. Somewhere under the pile the botnet is making friends with the enemy bombers.

Location: Zivu

Zombies are forming a helpful free-roaming defence force all across my empire, at least when they're not wandering aimlessly on to the AI worlds. Like the dyson gatlings, these guys make useful if uncontrollable patrols who tend to bunch up on any planet currently under attack. Technically we could control then if we used redirector rally posts, but those tend to interfere with normal fleet control as well so I don't normally bother.

Anyway, after some cleanup on Zarvo and Tolgartol we're now back down to around 700 threat, much lower than when we started. I'm sure that'll change when the next cowardly wave hits, though.

Annoyingly in the time it took us to manage this Nomad One has moved on. It's now hanging around somewhere up by Nocalik, and moving further away all time time. If we want the fleet to catch up with it, we probably need to crank out some assault transports.

Next time, on AI War: The Lonely Wanderer