Part 93: Interview 47 - Lets See How Far Weve Come"Interview 47 - Lets See How Far Weve Come"
We've come a long way to be here, but we're finally taking on Sturm again.
I think its going to take a little more time.
About 3 No, about 40 days. Maybe
I will not wait that long. Finish it in 30 days.
Do you understand?
OK, Ill try
And how is the Deathray?
Its fine. You can use it now. I even fixed it, too! Now it wont damage our troops when its fired. It does need 7 days to build up enough energy to fire, though.
Hm. 7 days Ill not forget.
As we already established in the previous part, the winners of the vote for this final map were Colin, Kanbei and Eagle - a group of nice, uncomplicated and strong COs. Having Lightning Strike as a backup is always nice too.
So, uh, this map?
'S pretty big. Thankfully you can ignore most of it, since we won't be using a lot of the space. Pay special attention to the middle section, where there's two Black Cannons - this is where a lot of the fighting will be taking place, and as such, getting rid of those cannons is going to be top priority. Our actual goal for the map, however, is further north.
Here we go
Look what Ive found.
You Youre Sturm!
And youre the little girl who likes playing with soldiers. Here you are again, sneaking around where you dont belong.
Sonjas not alone. Were all here. Different place, same cast.
Youre all here? Then you shall all taste despair. For you shall witness the destruction of your world when my missile strikes.
As long as were alive, that will never happen.
Empty words, worm. The missile platform is beyond your reach.
What is that supposed to mean?
Enough talk. I would see your power.
Hey! Wait a Beyond our reach? Its right
Ohmigosh! Weve just received a report of a giant laser blocking the platform!
That would explain why the old boy was so doggone sure of himself.
In that case, we should strike now, while we have the chance.
It doesnt look like well be able to avoid that contraption.
So we weaken his defenses, attack the platform, and stop the launch
That sounds like a plan I can get behind!
Let us aim for the laser. Move out, everyone!
And there we have it - our mission for this map. Breaking the Deathray is how we win, but getting up there in one piece, and avoiding his shitloads of troops, is not going to be easy.
"B-but Post!" you stammer, looking at the map I showed you. "Sturm doesn't have any units!"
Oh, don't you worry. He's getting friggin' 29k a turn, so we'll be drowning in his overpowered units within a few days. Anyway, it's almost time for us to begin; here's the deployments for the final battle.
Boris, Medium Tank
Diana, Battle Copter
Alina, Battle Copter
Gavril, Battle Copter
Kyril, Medium Tank
Rose, Battle Copter
Andromeda, Battle Copter
Minerva, Battle Copter
You might notice a surplus of bombers on this list. And you all KNOW how I feel about lots of bombers.
BH Soldier: S-sir! Weve weve received a troubling report!
Fool! Nothing can trouble us. This ragged army poses no threat to my plans.
BH Soldier: B-but, Lord Sturm reports say that hes with them.
BH Soldier: I dont know how its possible. We had scouts all around the Black Hole territory its like he just teleported in or something!
Leave me! Get back to your post.
BH Soldier: Yes, Lord Sturm
So, against all odds, youve come back. Hmph. You can think what you like about yourself, worm, but your presence does not guarantee victory. Not this time.
I will crush you, Commander my dude. You shall bear witness to the end of your miserable world. Struggle all you may, but there is no changing the outcome.
As Lash said, this fucker fires every 7 days. We do not want to be in the way of it when it does - it does 8 damage to every unit caught in its path.
Anyway, since nobody on this map thought to predeploy any damn units for the final battle, we'll have to start from scratch with some infantry. The beginning of this map is slow, but it speeds up very quickly. You'll see what I mean. Anyway, here we've got Ivan...
"Dimitri's Mercenaries are all ready for ya, Sturm. You sure you want to fight us? We'll beat you, without even breaking a sweat."
"I finally understand. Battle is like poetry, and every one of us is part of the poem. Under my dude's command, we're a symphony of soldiers, ready to defeat you for good!"
Kanbei's turn next, and he deploys some infantries too. We all need more money if we're to hold Sturm's forces back. So, up next we have Lysander...
"I don't like the idea of you destroying my home. Anything I can do to stop you, I'll do. Are you prepared to call my bluff?"
"It doesn't matter what happens to me in this battle. What matters is that I will give up everything if it means protecting my loved ones! So come on, Sturm! Give me everything you've got!"
Same for Green Earth. I promise more interesting things happen in a bit - we just need money first to do those interesting things. Here, we've got Mulligan...
"This is your second chance, Sturm. But I'm sorry - we beat you last time, and we'll beat you again! No matter how many times you come back, we will always be here to stop you!"
"Aw, man. Petra's watching this battle. I'm gonna give it my all to impress her - the new blood of Green Earth can't be stopped by the likes of you!"
Right. Sturm doesn't deploy anything super dangerous on his first turn - a couple of infantry, a tank, that sort of thing. His forces will be aiming to capture the two bases near Kanbei and Eagle, though. Worst part is, we can't defend them since they're right in Black Cannon range.
Whilst our blue boys get started on capturing, I deploy some more infantry. Colin needs more money than his peers - partially because he's going to deploy a lot of expensive shit, and partially because he's going to be the one doing the meteor-baiting this time around. Next we've got Elena...
"Every shot I fire today will be aiming to kill. There is no mercy for one such as you."
"We've come so far. We won't give up at this last hurdle - there's so much more I want to do before I die!"
Kanbei does not deploy anything because of his more useful units (i.e. bombers) are insanely expensive. However, his infantry make a beeline for some nearby properties. There is a reason that Lysander's going towards the base to the east - we'll need it for deploying something later, and it has to be captured ASAP.
I wouldn't say it's quite as RNG-dependent as Final Battle in AW1 was, but Final Front is definitely the kind of map where every minute counts. You can't slip up - Sturm punishes you hard if you do.
Eagle's troops are also off to capture stuff, and I deploy a third infantry to help out. It's Edelson.
"I'm here to help! No matter what I have to do to help my country to victory, I'll do it. There's no backing down here!"
The stuff Sturm deployed last turn starts charging towards us, but it'll take a while to get down to us.
So! Day 3, and you might think that we've not got nearly enough money to deploy something fun. But as usual, Colin's lower-priced units come through for us.
Oh, yeah, a day 3 bomber, lads. It's Zlata!
"I've come so far from where I started. I'm a proud member of Dimitri's Mercenaries, and I will teach you to fear our name!"
Everyone else is still capturing. Zlata's gonna be putting in some good work for us, though.
Lysander and Talora start capturing. We... seriously aren't going to be able to deploy very much as Kanbei, at least not for a while. Naturally, it'll be well worth it when we eventually do, especially since his units are so bulky.
More capturing. Eagle's money is pretty tight on these first few turns, and you'll see why next turn.
Sturm's already being an asshole, meanwhile. This medium tank is going to cause problems for us.
On the other side, he's already got an infantry towards that base. See what I mean? There's absolutely no way to get there first and actually hold the line. Trust me, I tried.
But we already knew Sturm was a fuck, so let's just keep on going with our plan.
Our infantry are done capturing, so I send them south for now. There's some more buildings down there, and I'd just like to have them out of the way of the fighting.
Let's get a bro copter! These will be our best investment for most of our COs - Sturm's tanks, even with their jacked-up attack and defence stats, still can't do reliable damage to copters. This is Diana.
"Dimitri... the hate I held in my heart for you is gone. Now the only hate I have is pointed squarely at YOU, Sturm! Let me show you just how Blue Moon wages war!"
Zlata heads north, as far as she can go. She's on her way to the first of the Black Cannons, though she's not in its range yet.
Kanbei is, uh, still not doing much. Man needs his money - on the plus side, that base that we needed is captured. Not a moment too soon, either.
Anywya, Eagle's troops continue to capture. Mulligan's going for the base, since it might be useful later. But you'll also note that we've just barely got enough for a bomber - 22k exactly. So, let's do that, shall we?
Amarah shakes the hair out of her eyes and looks over the battlefield. "It's time to take to the air. With every Black Hole soldier I defeat, we get closer to earning our freedom!"
Unfortunately Amarah will not be doing much killing. She has another more important, but way less fun job.
Just in case you thought the left side was fine, it is not. That bomber is a massive fucking issue, and it is exactly why we needed to capture that eastern base. Everything else, we can pretty much ignore though.
Sturm's middle units are finally closing in on Blue Moon's area, so we'll have to block them off at the bridges if we can. The bad news? The bridge on the right is directly in range of the Deathray. So, yeah. We won't be blocking that one.
Oh, boy, things are swiftly getting rather fuck. This map doesn't give you much time to prepare at all; if you were expecting this to be a deal-with-opening-gambit-then-snowball, you're out of luck, I'm afraid. This is more of a desperately-hold-off-sturm-until-you-win kind of deal.
Sturm's units are so strong that trying to snowball and get to him is possible, but not without losing units, and the 30-day time limit is also a Sword of Damocles hanging over the whole ordeal. We're going to have to sneak a unit up to take out the Deathray and just use the rest of our forces to buy as much time as possible.
...So, let's do it.
The infantry continue to head down - you can see the buildings there. Any extra money for Colin is a good thing right now.
And Diana, from the airport, is exactly in range to block off the bridge from that enemy tank. It's almost like this was the intended method.
The only thing better than one bro copter is two bro copters! ...Though, since they're both girls, are they even bro copters?
Anyway, it's Alina.
"The Snowbound Free Company always finishes our mission. And our mission, from the beginning of this campaign, was destroying you. So hold tight, Sturm... A storm is coming!"
Zlata continues heading up.
Yes, I am aware she is directly in Black Cannon range. Trust me.
Just trust me on this.
Everyone else is doing fine, at least. Sturm not having a proper opening gambit means that the early part of this map isn't very panic-inducing. It takes a few turns for the dangerous stuff, like his bomber on the left and medium tank on the right, to actually reach your forces.
Honestly, it's strange how this map can be physically one of the largest in the game, and yet it feels the most restrictive in terms of your options. Intelligent Systems are either geniuses or idiots, and I can't tell.
So, that base we needed? It was to deploy an anti-air on! And it's Vanessa.
"You know, Sturm, I like you." Vanessa says, an eerie smirk crossing her face. "I mean, it takes incredible bravery to go up against the three greatest strategists in the world... or incredible foolishness! Let's see what you're made of!"
Talora isn't going to be capturing something this turn - she'll be heading down so she can get to this missile silo next turn. It should help turn the tables on Captain Deathray over here.
Everyone else is staying where they are for now, though Lysander will be heading south next to help capture those last few properties.
On Eagle's side, Conrad is doing the same thing. I mean, they're giving us the missiles, we can't not use them, right? It's be rude not to.
Amarah, meanwhile, will occupy this exact position. And yes, I am aware that she's in range of the Black Cannon.
Since Colin's bombers are cheaper than Eagle's, she'll be taking the hit, thereby keeping Zlata safe. It's the same concept we used back in Hot Pursuit, but even more spicy this time.
Eagle is all out of money now, though, so we'll be taking it easy on the deploying front for a bit. Just keep capturing stuff, Mulligan. It'll work out.
And as predicted...
Amarah takes the hit.
"Hit confirmed!" Amarah shouts. "That means you're free to move ahead, Zlata, quickly!"
"Thanks, Amarah! I'm going forward now - that cannon will be dust soon!"
But hey, bad news - the medium tank's arrived, and this infantry is going to be capturing that base. I'd rather not have these two hanging around, so our next plan is to figure out how a single bomber on 5HP can hold off these two losers.
Things are going decently, though. Zlata's almost at the cannon, for starters.
Yeah, there we go! She's definitely going to eat the hit next turn, but even on 5HP she'll have more than enough firepower to finish it off, so that's a win in my book.
Diana's just hanging around for a bit, just in case Kanbei needs help, so it's up to Alina to attack the tank. It's not clever enough to move around to go across the other bridge, so it's pretty much a non-issue.
But that's not what Colin's here for! Deploy more fodder for Meteor Strike, more!
"You've got me all riled up now, Sturm! Hit me with your worst, because I promise, if you hesitate, we'll destroy you!" Boris yells, punching the air.
OK, now Blue Moon is done. Let's move on to the rather more dicey Kanbei and Eagle situations, shall we?
First we're going to be helping out Eagle a bit.
"Hang in there, Green Earth. We're here to help." Talora says, preparing the missile to fire.
And it's a direct hit on these two!
Also, Kanbei's finally got the fucking money for a bomber, so let's deploy Peregrine. She'll be crucial to our battle today.
"Man, I feel like I could break the sound barrier today!" Peregrine shouts. "Sturm, you fucking bastard, let me show you just how powerful I am! You can't stop what I've got planned!"
Everyone else, however, waits. I didn't deploy Vanessa to target the bomber - she's simply a deterrent. Bombers might strong, but an Kanbei anti-air on a base is going to tank a bomber without any trouble - and because of that, the bomber isn't even going to attack her.
Anyway, let's help out Eagle even more. Conrad fires the second silo at the same targets.
Yeah, these two. This might seem like a waste of two missiles, but a 4HP infantry is going to take 5 days to capture that base instead of the usual 2, which prevents Sturm from being too aggressive with Eagle, and a 4HP medium tank can die to Amarah (about 10% of the time, anyway).
The other lads just capture some stuff.
Come on, RNG, don't fail me now! If you leave this thing on 1HP I swear to god...
"Threat neutralised!" Amarah says. "Gosh, it's so nice up here. We must protect this view... How's everyone doing?"
"Just peachy. Let's keep it up!" Mulligan replies.
Sturm's turn, and Zlata takes a direct hit to the face. She'll be fine, though.
Sturm's bomber makes the incredibly baffling move of moving into Vanessa's range but not attacking her. I am not going to complain.
Also, forget what I said about Sturm not being too aggressive with Eagle. Fuckin' Neotank is on the way now.
We're doing alright, though. I'm almost ready to make a move on the second Black Cannon.
The Blue Moon folks begin to congregate down here - Peter and Anton on the right, however, don't just yet. It's day 7, and if they move across they'll be right in the range of the Deathray.
Alina's not in Deathrange (see what I did there?) so she can just keep attacking this tank.
Diana hops over to killsteal like a bitch. Well, OK, the tank would have retreated if we didn't finish it on this turn, so it's a good job she got the kill.
"Here it comes, Sturm! This is only the beginning!" yells Zlata, preparing to fire.
BOOM! Wonderful job, Zlata. One down, one to go.
Anyway, nobody's in range of the Deathray, we got a cannon down and our meteor fodder is slowly growing. This was a good turn.
Let's keep the good luck rolling with Kanbei as Vanessa attacks this bomber. This is a crucial move - bringing it down to <2HP activates the AI's flight mode, making it value retreating over attacking.
It'll take the bomber like 3 turns to get back to the airport, and a further 4 turns to heal up to full HP again. That means that for 4 turns, Sturm can't deploy anything from that airport, and the bomber won't be a threat to us for at minimum 7 turns. That's a pretty good result for just one attack from an anti-air.
Speaking of good results, we can land a devastating blow on this anti-air, too - Kanbei bombers do not give a shit about anti-air units, but we need it out of the way so we can move towards the second Black Cannon. Peregrine's got an important job ahead of her, and I do not want some anti-air or missile units fucking it all up.
Sturm does have a shitload of units over this side, though. Dealing with it is not going to be easy, especially with how little money Kanbei's got.
Anyway, over on Eagle's side, we've got to try and prevent anything dangerous from getting past this base; the base makes a nice 2-space chokepoint for, say, two bombers. And since this infantry isn't doing anything threatening, Amarah decides to let him live.
And we'll get a second bomber for the choking of the point. It's Matilda!
"I stand by my companions and my convictions. People like you must not be allowed to exist in this world, Sturm. We shall rid our land of your evil influence!"
Mulligan's capturing another base down there. He's not got much else to do, really.
Anyway, like I said, day 7. Sturm's got something to show us.
The Deathray charges up power...
Ruin would have made a better sound effect, I bet.
Exactly like I was hoping, the anti-air and bomber, the most dangerous units here right now, retreat like their lives depend on it (and to be fair, they do). So all in all, this turn wasn't so bad. It'll get worse soon enough, though.
Colin's only real job now is to put money into baiting out Meteor Strike, and helping out Eagle and Kanbei. So first we're going to get Zlata and-
-what the fuck is that. Oh, god, a fighter jet?! It's going to ruin Eagle's bomber chokepoint! Fuck fuck fuck.
So, yeah, this guy. I don't know if it's because of the units I've produced, but Sturm always seems to produce a fighter on day 7 - he can either deploy it her, or in one of the airports near the Deathray. And... as bad as this looks? We want it over here, because if it comes down from the top, it'll run right into Peregrine whilst she's destroying the other Black Cannon and wreck her shit.
At least if it kills anything over this side, it doesn't ruin my chances of beating the map. Though, obviously, we would much rather it not kill anything at all...
Another bomber, Klara, for the meteor bait.
"I... I'm feeling pretty enraged right now!" Klara yells, her berserk tendencies taking over. "Come on, Sturm! Hit us with everything you've got, and watch us take it like it's nothing! You know why that'll happen?! Because YOU'RE NOTHING!"
Anyway, right, Zlata needs to get the fuck out of there before that fighter finds her.
Everyone else is doing alright, but man, that fighter is going to be a problem. And I didn't deploy any fighters of my own to counter it.
Things on this side are going well, though. The enemies have moved in such a way that Peregrine can occupy this spot - which looks like it's in cannon range, but it's just barely outside it. She can sneak through and take out the cannon now!
Vanessa just starts cleaning up the mooks. She's done her job.
"Hey, Perry!" she says through the transceiver. "You moving ahead?"
"Yeah, I'm en route to the cannon. Your orders?"
"You already know my orders." grins Vanessa. "Peregrine... fly a lot, and kill everything!"
"Your wish is my fucking command!" yells Peregrine, speeding up her bomber and blasting through the air, right over Sturm's army.
Anyway, isn't it about time that Yellow Comet's finest hit the scene? Come on, Rose, the goons have been waiting for you.
"I was hardly going to miss the greatest battle of my career, Commander my dude. It's an honour to see your tactics at work once again - with you, I am confident that Sturm has no hope of victory." Rose says, taking flight and preparing for combat. "Sturm, your days are numbered. We are not just a powerful force - with our COs, ACOs and soldiers combined, united under one banner against a despicable foe, we are an invincible legion. Challenging us was folly, but it was the choice you made... so allow me to show you just how miserable of a mistake it was to face me!"
These guys are still helping, too. Come on, capture some more stuff and give Kanbei more funds already. He needs them, poor guy. Nobody should have to save for two turns to afford one bro copter.
That was a fun turn. Let's keep it up, everyone! And uh, just ignore those tanks up there, Vanessa. They're definitely not going to murder you next turn. Promise.
On Eagle's side, however, the 'oh fuck' alarm has been ringing for the last five minutes straight, so we're deploying missiles to try and take out that fighter. First up, we've got Henry.
"Heheh! Sturm, for once in my life, I'm not in a joking mood - the only joke here is that you think you can defeat us when we're all working together!"
And the fucking Neotank's shown up, too. Come on, Sturm, this is a dick move, even for you.
"Gaah! Rose, are you absolutely certain that my dude knows what he's doing?!" says Vanessa, wincing as her anti-air is rocked by a tank blast.
"He may not look it, but he's a tactician on par... or perhaps better, than me. His style is just a little more haphazard than my exact planning and focus on minute details."
"You don't say..." sighs Vanessa, eyeing the encroaching army with a pit of fear in her stomach.
The fighter jet's here and so is the Neotank. And if I kill the Neotank with the bombers, they'll be in range of the fighter.
God, I hate fighters. Fucking 9 movement pieces of shit...
OK, how am I supposed to even deal with all of this.
One step at a time, I guess. Right, Alina and Diana are going to back up Kanbei since one anti-air, even a Kanbei anti-air, is not going to survive a medium tank to the face. Diana gets a good hit on the enemy bro copter.
Alina can't quite get a kill, but eh, the copter's basically a non-issue now. We'll finish it off later.
Another bomber for the pile! More funds, more baiting!
Olga lets out a long breath. "My final battle... I'll do what I can. I've fought long and hard to get here, and I never lose. Never, ever!"
Speaking of, we still haven't seen Meteor Strike. I'm surprised. Then again, I suppose we haven't killed very much stuff, we just weakened a bunch of things.
Anyway, our little copter placement also provides the perfect place for Vanessa to retreat to. If she installs herself here...
The tanks can't get to her. I mean, we really need to finish them off, but that's gonna take a few turns. They're bulky as hell and our bomber is currently occupied doing something else.
More Kanbei copters sounds like a plan, though. Andromeda, come on out!
"I will... not lose, fail, lose! Not today. We fight for safety, freedom! We fight to win... for our friends!"
"Well said, Andromeda." Rose replies, giving her friend a determined smile. "There's nobody else I'd rather have flying alongside me - let us go, together."
Well, things aren't looking quite so dire over here. That medium tank is going to annoy the shit out of me, though. I can already tell.
On Eagle's side, I continue to deploy a bunch of random plane-killing shit to take out that fighter. This is Cassandra Fucking Morgenstern!
"Your aims are lofty, and that's to be admired. But I'll be the one to bring you down to earth, Sturm!" Cassandra shouts. "All the countries have united, and we fight together, because it is our duty to destroy evil!"
I'm putting the folks in a defensive formation like so - they're not in fighter range, and the Neotank can't target Henry, so this should be good. Hopefully. I'm a tad nervous, won't lie.
On the negative side, this is a one-shot.
On the plus side, it was Mulligan.
"I'm off out of here! Can't let Howard be all alone now, can I?" Mulligan says as the Neotank's shots rip through the undergrowth around him. "Yep, this is definitely the time to back out. Best of luck to the rest of you!"
"How does he do that?" murmurs Henry. "He just... dodged the bullets?"
"Best not to ask." replies Amarah, shrugging. "We've got bigger things to worry about right now, like that fighter headed our way!"
Annoyingly enough, the goddamn fighter isn't approaching as quickly now that we have missiles. Fuck you, fighter jet.
Sturm's tanks harass Colin's planes a bit, but it's not major damage. We have survived another turn! ...Barely. God knows what I'm gonna do about that fighter jet.
Y'know what? That's something that future my dude can worry about. I'll see you all next week for the thrilling not-quite-conclusion!
And hey, if you haven't voted for your favourite characters in Let's Play Advance Wars: Their Finest Hour yet, go do that before votes close next week! Link is here or on the contents page if you need it.
Part 47 Additional