Part 15: Interview 8 - Flaks Last Stand (Or, The Unstoppable Urge To Just Bomb The Fuck Out Of Things)Interview 8 - Flaks Last Stand (Or, The Unstoppable Urge To Just Bomb The Fuck Out Of Things)
This is it, right? For Orange Star, anyway.
Indeed. It is time that I relayed the final battle to free Orange Star.
Even Flak is aware that things are coming to a head.
Oh, no, I don't like him.
Oh, he's Adder and he crawled out from under a rock. Because he's a snake.
Yes, I know.
Because SNAKE PUN-
We get it Commander
I know all the Black Hole troops are, like, super evil, but this guy looks and sounds so evil that even Sturm would be like "hey, Adder, chill".
"Watching you fail is funnier, though."
The Black Hole troops are just as prone to infighting as Max and Dipshit are.
Oh, wow, 'the natives'. This guy really does look upon us as a lower species, huh?
Yes you will.
To be fair to Flak, knowing that Orange Star defeated him last time, you'd think Sturm would send his strongest CO there.
Well, if you want to get technical, it was Eagle that really swung the battle, so I imagine all Sturm's available firepower is going there. Sturm probably underestimated Orange Star, since he knew that I wasn't going to be there. But even without me, everyone's held their own pretty well!
Out of interest, how hard does Flak lose this map?
You'll see. This is something special indeed.
Max is selected for this mission. That's probably not too surprising, though.
He's just the best choice for when you want things to be really, really dead.
Here are today's deployments, also.
Alright, where are the rest of them?
...How the hell do you beat a map with five deployments?
You'll see. Anyway, for the so-called "final battle" of Orange Star's campaign, this isn't even the biggest map we've seen so far.
That's disappointi- what the fuck is that.
For once, you and Dipshit are wondering the same thing.
An installation? It's a fucking factory the size of nine cities.
I think it's safe to say that 'world domination' factors into it somewhere.
I feel like 'factory' is a massive understatement.
Well, it's certainly imposing, but there's a distinct lack of, like, actual units defending it.
Wait and see, my dude.
Nell certainly has quite an intelligence network. How did she get a spy in here in the midst of all the conflict?
I don't know. She seems very on top of things.
No kidding... the woman's a machine.
And we have no pre-deployed units. That's rare.
It is. The enemy also has no pre-deployed units, though, so at least it's fair.
So, with no units on the field and Flak at a considerable monetary advantage, there's only one option for the first turn.
Infantry and APC?
Absolutely. Michael and Alfonse are deployed first.
What with there being no pre-deployed units, I'm wondering if Sami might've been a better choice. I guess we'll see, though.
Oh god, here we go.
Ruin. Ruin he just spawned and moved in the same turn.
Same-turn reinforcements. I believe that's a first for you, isn't it?
I'm kind of glad I wasn't part of this campaign now. I would've hated going against something like this. Is it just infantry and mechs? Please tell me it's just infantry and mechs and other harmless things.
Wait and see.
That's what I'd like to know!
See, you just need to be patient. Nell's about to tutorialise all about it. Aren't you excited?
You're right, Nell. My patience is also being quite thoroughly attacked.
This would have been a more shocking twist had Sturm not specified that he was planning on doing that at the beginning of the campaign.
True. I suppose it's a surprise for these guys, though, since they weren't privy to that particular conversation.
It's a magic pipe that just... sucks money and ammunition into it, I suppose.
I'd argue that Flak is not very dangerous. He just happens to have dangerous structures under his command.
Well, we went 8 interviews before our first "power of friendship" speech. I suppose we couldn't get away with it forever.
Not one for friendship, my dude?
Hey, I love my friends. Just not Dipshit.
I must admit, they've exceeded my expectations. I thought they'd be useless without me, but I evidently trained them well.
If that's what you want to believe, then sure. Anyway, Alfonse gets into Michael, bound for a nearby property.
By dropping Alfonse on the river here, Michael can guarantee that Alfonse will begin capturing the airport on day 3.
I would've done the same. If there's only one airport on a map, it's pretty much tantamount to success.
Quite so. Next, Fliss is deployed.
This map starts slowly, but it's going to build up. If Flak keeps deploying infantry over and over, we'll end up overwhelmed - especially since he has so many properties up in the top left there.
It is a little unfair, I agree. Still, in the spirit of fairness, Flak doesn't deploy anything from the factory today.
Gosh, how kind of him.
The devil works hard, but Nell's spies work harder, it seems.
Is that such a surprise? They don't want the factory to be destroyed.
Well- yes! Why the hell don't Black Hole just, you know, make their fucking tanks out of the same stuff?
Maybe it's too expensive.
They built a CITY-SIZED FACTORY and a SEVERAL KILOMETRE-LONG PIPE out of it. If anything, making all their tanks impervious would've been cheaper!
I think we've already established that Black Hole is not the unbeatable military force that they think they are.
Ah, a potential weakness?
Bombers might be able to, yeah. Max's bomber definitely can.
It's certainly quite an obvious weakness. You'd think there would at least be some pre-deployed units defending that weak point.
I think Max is way ahead of you there, Nell. Alfonse is almost there already.
Considering how strong planes are, it will be a considerable advantage indeed.
Yeah - especially on a map like this with no pre-deployed missiles or something.
I dare say that CO powers are only really useful on longer maps.
I mean, we're eight missions in, and we've used them, like, twice? It's a shame, because Max's is super fun.
You're not even doing this map, Dipshit.
Alfonse begins capturing the airport.
Two days until bomber time.
With what money?
...Fuck. I mean, if the enemy are busy capturing stuff for a few days, Max should be able to not deploy anything for the next few days and save some money that way.
In the interest of speeding up funds production, Michael heads back to prepare to pick up his next customer.
Tanks everywhere are trembling. ...Or they would be, but there aren't any in this map yet.
The Black Hole troops are apparently surprised by this. It was, in hindsight, a very obvious weak point.
Ah, but Flak, you underestimate Max's ability to just absolutely shit out damage.
The stakes are high. And it all comes down to this supply pipe.
Thus, Flak is coming out swinging.
I love how Flak yelled "smash 'em!" and all his units went "yes!" and then immediately went back to capturing things.
Also, don't think I didn't notice that the factory produced a recon. I am very concerned.
Well, forget it for now. Currently, Alfonse has captured the airport.
Fliss, meanwhile, is preparing to capture more cities for funds.
I, too, take over an entire city whenever I want some pocket money.
Dave and Michael are bound for that base near the airport.
This is looking really promising. It really doesn't seem like a very difficult map.
It is surprisingly lacking in actual combat so far.
Artillery come from the factory, too? Damn. At this rate they actually might start producing missiles and medium tanks.
Say, do factories also take funds to produce units, or is it just free?
I am sorry to say that I never bothered to find that out. I'm not sure.
Either way, Dave starts capturing the base, even though it probably won't be that useful. Max has enough money.
Oh my god, is it bomber time
It is, as you say, "bomber time".
The bomber prepares to lift off as Alfonse watches from the nearby mountain.
"Best of luck, Lucy! Our fortunes ride on you now!"
Dave snorts. "She's got this. This is Lucy we're talking about."
"Thanks for your belief!" Lucy says, saluting from within her cockpit, even though nobody can see her. "I'll have this pipe destroyed in a flash, just you watch!"
"I've captured this nearby p-property." Fliss says. "G-go, Lucy! You can do it!"
This could all still turn around if something undesirable comes out of that factory.
Oh, shit. It's a good job they deployed Lucy when they did - just one day later and she'd have been right in range of this thing.
It is a supremely good job that missiles cannot move and fire in the same turn.
Let's just see how well bombers can deal with that pipe. The Black Cannon took two hits from a medium tank to go down, but bombers are stronger and we've got Max, so maybe we'll one-shot it.
With Dave's successful capture of this base, the assault begins.
"Listen up, and listen well, Black Hole soldiers!" comes a commanding voice from the bomber flying towards the pipe's weakened seam. "You have come into our country, tried to take our resources for your own, and hurt and killed both soldiers and innocents in your quest to take us down! But that reign of terror ends today - I, Lucy Ophelia Maxwell, rule these skies, and I decree..."
"That your invasion is well and truly OVER!"
With a single volley of bombs, the pipe's weak point is destroyed, causing the structure to blast into pieces.
The solution to every single problem in this world is "several bombers". It's just fact.
I thought it was medium tanks?
I can like multiple units.
I get the very concerning feeling that this is not the last we've seen of these factories.
I get the feeling that Flak is going to be demoted after this disappointing display.
Huh. This is the first time I've seen the "I have my friends with me" speech from the villains' point of view.
I think it's less of a "I have my friends with me" speech and more of a "this is only the beginning, muhahahah" kind of speech.
...Did everyone in the world just forget that Green Earth exists? I swear they've not been mentioned once yet.
Either way, Flak all but confirms that, indeed, other countries have been invaded.
Something else we already knew from the Sturm prologue.
Orange Star are the absolute worst people at capturing enemy COs. I don't think they managed it ONCE in the last campaign.
Flak's escape isn't much of a problem, considering that he'll likely be fired or punished once he rejoins Sturm's forces. The other countries being under attack is more of a concern.
I'll say. They've put in the work in these last few maps - they deserve a bit of a rest.
She has a point. Morale without you around, my dude, has been a more difficult thing to manage.
Aw, stop it, you'll make me blush.
This sounds like they're about to have another celebration. At least they deserve it this time, since they did drive Black Hole out properly this time.
"Your long, time-consuming instruction about stuff we should already know. Thanks for tutorialising in literally every map."
This little bit of positivity is almost disgustingly saccharine.
"But not Green Earth! Fuck those guys!"
Sami also apparently confirms that, yes, Black Hole come from outer space.
I'm not even surprised.
Max has his priorities in order, at least.
I'm getting quite hungry myself. I should get lunch after this interview is done.
Can I have lunch?
"Amazing work on beating that map without losing anyone, and so quickly, too. But you only get a B grade since we have a minimum amount of people that you need to punch before we'll count this as a proper victory."
You're not fond of high command's grading system, I take it?
It's just so arbitrary.
At least you can rest easy knowing that Orange Star is free. Of course, the story does continue.
Yeah, I figured. So where are we off to next?
Well, allow me to set the scene for both countries first.
Oh, it's my first rival, Olaf. What's he been up to?
Gasp! Is my favourite Advance Wars bromance about to get back together?!
They aren't gay.
They are MARRIED and that is CANON.
Gosh, that sounds serious.
Grit does not quite understand the gravity of the situation at this minute.
Outer space, apparently.
It's only been eighteen months! How did Grit already forget about literally the largest mass invasion in Wars World's history?
Even Olaf's more with it than Grit is, and that's a rarity.
And he's immediately prepared for war.
I can assure you, he is aggressively incompetent when he wants to be.
Grit is just as laissez-faire as I remember. I feel like this dude would wake up to see his entire house on fire and just shrug and go "huh. how 'bout that."
Pfft. I have missed Grit and Olaf's relationship.
They certainly have a... vitriolic partnership.
Olaf's definitely losing it, it being his temper.
And now we have a new recruit.
Oh my god, Olaf and Grit had a baby. Adorable.
Augh. They aren't married!
I wonder what his whole deal is?
You'll find out at some point. Pay attention for now, though.
I'm not entirely sure that of all the COs in Wars World, Olaf is the one that you should look up to.
Colin does not seem to mind.
Grit continues to be effortlessly the coolest motherfucker in Blue Moon.
I think by now you can guess what Colin's main personality trait is.
Hey, it's a fun one to use in conjunction with Olaf and Grit.
It does amuse me. Mostly because I was very much like this with my superiors.
I was going to say, you seem like a "by the books" type of cop.
I'm gonna say it. Blue Moon has my favourite COs and banter. Sue me.
They do seem interesting. You fought them in the last campaign?
Yeah. Olaf was a pushover, Grit was an absolute bastard. I'll be interested to see what they do against Black Hole!
Interesting indeed. Firstly, though, let's also check on Yellow Comet.
You don't need to put a big glowing "YELLOW COMET" on this map, Ruin. It already says Yellow Comet in the top right there.
I, uh. Never mind.
Oh god it's Sonja, or as I call her, Chloroform McGee.
And her father, Kanbei. The mighty ruler of Yellow Comet.
He's an idiot.
Pfft, hahahahah! Oh, never change, Kanbei. Never fucking change.
Can I break the fourth wall, just for a sec?
Make it quick.
I gotta say, the moment-to-moment writing of this game is top-notch so far. Some of these interactions make the characters way more endearing than they ever were in AW1.
Oh, you actually said something positive. How surprising.
Aw, c'mon. At the end of the day, I do actually love this series.
Well, everyone's on high alert now, it seems.
You'd hope so. They are being invaded, after all.
True. But what about Green Earth? It's weird that they've not been mentioned yet.
Oh, hey, the generic soldiers look different for each country. Nice attention to detail.
That's probably an important thing to find out. Knowing who is invading is key.
Suddenly, an old man. Who's this?
...Is he referred to as Sensei, or is his name Sensei? I'm unclear.
Don't worry your pretty head about it.
So Blue Moon have been bolstered by a new recruit, whilst Yellow Comet have called on an old hand. Quite fitting.
Oh, he controls the skies. I wonder how he differs from Eagle?
Yellow Comet are certainly confident.
Sonja's middle name may as well be "overconfident".
Either way, they should be fun. So, that's what the two countries are doing at the moment?
Indeed - Yellow Comet is prepared to crush the Black Hole forces...
And Blue Moon's fighting back against the invaders. I see. So, where to first?
Well, first, more Dudecon, please.
Yes, yes, alright...
Part 8 Additional
[Alright, guys, here's how we're going to handle the vote. I'll be doing the countries in one go, so: for the first five days (Feb 7th-Feb 11th) people will vote for Blue Moon or Yellow Comet. For the second four days (Feb 12th-15th), people will vote on which map from those countries they want to start with. So, hey, pick a country - where are we going first?]