Part 27: Mission 22: Foul Play (or "Sensei vs. Adder: Round 3")
Mission 22: Foul Play (or "Sensei vs. Adder: Round 3")
2-0 to Sensei. Can Adder score one back? Let's hope not.
Did Black Hole really suggest that we form a lasting peace with them?
So it would seem, Daughter. Our consecutive victories have taken their toll on their army. They're proposing a peace treaty that is favorable to Yellow Comet.
Hmmm... How do you intend to respond, Kanbei?
Father, it's a trap! It must be. You must ignore it.
I admit the possibility that this might all be a trap. However, I intend to meet with them and hear their proposal.
Father! You mustn't...
I will not raise my sword against one who has thrown his down. That is not the way of the samurai.
There's no one here. It must be a trap.
No, wait... There's someone... There!
We came as promised, Adder. I would hear your plan for peace.
That isn't Adder! It's a dummy!
No! Everyone! Retreat!!
Sorry if this is a bit huge (about half a megabyte), it's my first attempt at turning video capture into an animated GIF. Anyway: Oh my, a bomb! Have Our Heroes survived?
Heh heh heh... Right on schedule. The road has been cleared of all obstacles. A leisurely march to the enemy HQ would seem to be in order.
Hate to tell you this, sonny, but that's not going to happen.
...Hsss... So you survived. It matters not. You're too late. Our preparations are complete. This pipe is the route by which materials are transported to our factory. It's also an impenetrable, indestructable wall. So why don't you twiddle your thumbs or something while I go and capture your HQ. Heh heh heh...
There's no scheme too base for these scoundrels.
Heh heh heh... Base? It's not base, it's brilliant! Now out of my way, you senile old fool! I've no time to spare for you. You may watch, though, while I claim my prize!
Adder you swine!
It's as Adder said. The pipe is indestructible. However, if we concentrate our fire on the seam, we might be able to open a hole in it that will allow our units to pass through.
Mm... Well then, let's give it a shot.
What are you attempting to prove? There's no way that you can turn the tables! It's too late!
This takes me back... Compared to the battles of old, this is nothing but a skirmish. Shall we get started then?
If we can take care of them, the foe will lose heart. Move out!
My word this is a big map. And to make things worse, there's action going on everywhere...
Up in the north west, Adder has a ridiculous doom army heading towards my HQ. Okay, so it's not as big as Lash's from the previous mission, but I don't have a mass of rockets to thin it out with. What I do have is a large number of bombers, which would make short work of Adder's anti-airless army, but they're stuck behind a bunch of pipes.
Okay, okay, so the solution's hardly difficult: break the pipe seams with the bombers, artillery and medium tanks while holding out at the HQ (although this is easier said than done). Once the bombers reach HQ, the tide should turn, and then I can counterattack by splatting these minicannons, our ultimate objective. There's also a surprise package in this mission in the form of a bunch of Yellow Comet cities in the north-east. A couple of Airborne Assaults here will give me a nice army to attack Adder's forces there with, especially if I send a couple of bombers to help them out.
Enough strategy, let's get this show on the road.
Artillery attacks anti-air, medium tanks target the pipe seams, and I build some mechs to help with HQ defence. Unfortunately, because Sensei's vehicles are a bit weak, it takes three hits from artillery and medium tanks to break a pipe seam with him. So I figured that I may as well shell the pipe seam next turn, since the AA's standing so obligingly in artillery range.
Meanwhile, in the south...
Sensei's good ol' B-Copters spring into action and reduce this medium tank to 3HP. They may be playing second fiddle to the bombers this mission, but they can still have some fun.
Synchronised T-Copter loading.
The Bombers and T-Copters form up behind the B-Copters, and I build an APC from the base down here. Well, gotta keep those air units fuelled.
Adder's crazy army has made it as far as the minicannons.
And his eastern troops are on the march as well.
Still, nothing to worry about just yet.
Artillery and medium tank break through the first seam, letting the other middie pierce through and attack the next one. And the mech spamming continues.
Meanwhile, in the south...
One bomber heads out to trash the incoming anti-air while another two bombers attack the seams. Annoyingly, "standard" bombers like Sensei's knock 95HP off of seams, which have 99HP. In other news, a B-Copter finishes off Adder's medium tank.
Bomber and B-Copter kill infantry, and the third B-Copter assaults an artillery.
As bombers finish off the artillery and AA, the T-Copters move up.
Adder's eastern troops continue to advance. What's most worrying though is that infantry unit, currently five squares from a missile silo. If Adder gets a Sidewinder next turn, some of my troops are going to get a missile to the face.
And his troops are starting to arrive in my HQ area. Again, a Sidewinder here will make things especially messy.
But first we need to keep attacking these seams; they are the key to victory, after all. Bombers burst through two seams in the south while a medium tank works away at the northern end.
B-Copters take advantage of the gaps created. One copter weakens a seam so that a bomber can finish it off next turn. The other attacks the tank that's hanging around in here for no real reason.
Two bombers take out an AA, another bomber cripples a medium tank, and a B-Copter attacks a tank. Another bomber... err... well, my finger slipped. That'll teach me to play without saving . I could have used that bomber to assault Adder's other medium tank here, but nooo...
Back at HQ, some of my defending mechs attack Flak's intrusive tanks.
My artillery moves down to work on the seam while a medium tank takes up the position of defending the HQ square. And I build yet more mechs.
T-Copters move up.
Think I'll have an infantry down here to help with capturing.
This isn't looking too great. As predicted, Adder launched that missile silo, and it hit the bombers and B-Copter down here (could have been worse I guess: could have hit my HQ area). And then the medium tank that I could have attacked last turn went and destroyed my APC .
Oh well, we can still turn this around. Time for a...
... SURPRISE PACKAGE!
Look at how surprised Adder's tanks are.
So at least I've smashed up Adder's northeastern rocket and tanks good.
I can also finish off breaking through these seams.
Artillery, middie and bomber make the necessary breakthroughs. But there's still a 4HP tank blocking my other bomber from moving through.
6HP mech takes it out, letting a bomber through. On the fourth day, look to the south.
They may have been hit by a missile, but the 7HP bombers and B-Copter still have it in them to finish off these southern Md tanks.
My final pair of bombers decide to pay Adder's eastern cluster of units a visit, setting up shop just outside of missile range.
T-Copters unload their charges onto the base and airport inside the pipes, mech attacks tank and I build another medium tank.
What a mess. To make matters worse, Adder's started capturing one of my bases, and there are units blocking me from hitting him.
Better take them out, then. True, there are some more juicy targets I could be hitting, but I need to clear this path. All would be lost if that base fell into Adder's hands.
The path duly cleared, one of my bombers cripples the mech to slow its progress. The other bomber attacks a neotank for good measure.
At least I can do some damage to all these tanks that are hanging about. And I can start capturing these two properties as well.
The T-Copters charge in to block up Adder's troop movement as much as possible, and I airlift that 1HP mech to (relative) safety.
In the meantime, things look rosier in the east. My bombers combine to take out that missile launcher, leaving the rest of Adder's units in this cluster defenceless.
I lost one of my mechs up here, and nearly lost another.
But it looks better than it seems. Joining the 9HP and 1HP mechs gives me a full health one, and I can take out two of the four tanks with the other two.
I've almost cleaned up in the south.
B-Copter finishes off tank, allowing my two 7HP bombers to move up towards the HQ.
Oh, come on...
Well, Adder used that Sidewinder to move a whole bunch of artillery into place.
We need to do something about that. The HQ medium tank finishes off the 3HP tank in front of it, allowing a bomber through to hit an artillery. Meanwhile, my own artillery hits a middie and the other bomber finishes off that capturing mech.
The B-Copters roll in to attack a tank and finish off that medium tank, while my 6HP medium tank goes on a bit of a suicide mission, attacking one of its neighbours.
As my T-Copters keep on blocking, the 7HP bombers continue to advance: they should arrive next turn.
The 7HP B-Copter follows, as I build an APC to grab this southeastern airport.
With the missiles out of the way, my bombers can wreck things up with impunity. Well, near-impunity. Priority one is to damage this infantry to stall it, so it can't fire those missile silos.
Not quite sure what happened here, but I'm guessing Adder's last two tanks ganged up on the 7HP mech, reducing it to 1HP. And then I killed one of the tanks in revenge. The 1HP mech is probably doomed, but I moved him onto a city for defence, just in case.
Yeah, okay, that was a tad optimistic. Still: he shall be avenged!
I'll have a side-order of mechs, please.
Tank down, rockets down, missiles crippled, base captured.
The remaining mechs advance towards these missile silos.
To ensure the silos are uncontested, the bombers finish off the infantry and neotank.
In a quiet corner of the map, an APC drops an infantry onto an airport.
Now then, the HQ area. Let's bring these 7HP bombers through to reinforce my defences.
Destroying one medium tank, damaging another.
Gratuitous Sensei battle copter action.
Copters take out an arty and finish off a tank, while my own arty damages that tank sitting on one of my bases.
Then my two full-health bombers here knock a pair of middies down to 1HP each.
You may have noticed my air units all complaining of a lack of fuel and ammo. Let's build an APC to rectify that.
This is getting ridiculous. Three Sidewinders in the space of five days.
Once again, that Sidewinder proved tactically useful for Adder, as it allowed him to bring an AA down to kill one of my B-Copters (I know he started with none in his Ridiculous Doom Army, but he has a base in the far north and I guess when you've got bombers flying around everywhere he's gonna try and build AAs). He then proceeded to pile just about every unit he could around the AA to protect it.
Fortunately, there's still a weak point in his defence: going round the back. It's out of minicannon range... (but not missile range. I didn't realise this until a couple of screenshots later )
In order to carve a path through to the AA, we need to find a weakpoint. This infantry looks like a good option, and I attack it with my artillery (I also attack a capturing mech with a B-Copter and supply some bombers with my APC).
A 7HP bomber finishes off the infantry, and a full health bomber flies through the gap to attack the AA... and that's when I noticed the missile launcher.
Oh well, no use crying over spilt milk. Bomber attacks neotank, other bomber kills a damaged small tank clogging up one of my bases.
Building a tank to defend that base, and other general unit moving...
... and then I realised that I've got missile silos over here. Damn it. If I'd used these first, dealing with that AA would have been a lot easier. I'm committing tactical errors all over the place today.
Well, we've got to make the best of what we've got.
Could be worse I guess. That bomber should at least survive now, and we've made good headway against Adder's various tanks.
In the north, I make another silly mistake: I sent that bomber up to refuel at the APC without realising I could attack the pipe seam, so I just hit "Wait". Seriously, it's a wonder that all of these silly errors haven't been more costly.
Bomber attacks rocket... but where did the artillery and recon go?
Ah, they're running away.
I build a recon and send my infantry and mech to claim the high ground for this odd little battle in the south.
Hmm, this isn't looking great right now. With 12 units lost, I need at least 60 built to make up for that. I'm going to have to go into serious unit production. Then again... this is Sensei. I have free infantry at my beck and call.
... huh. The missile launcher decided not to attack my bomber. Because... err... well, actually that's an odd thing about the AI and missiles that I've seen before: sometimes they don't attack. It's odd.
We'll decide what to do there in a moment, but first let's continue to clear out my HQ area. APC moves to resupply bomber, artillery attacks medium tank, B-Copter clears a mech off of one of my bases.
And follow it up by bombing an infantry (although the bomber had to go around the houses to get there), finishing off the medium tank with a B-Copter and attacking one of Adder's neos with my HQ medium tank.
So, having had its life spared once, I use this bomber to assault an AA from inside the missile launcher's range shadow... but also in range of a minicannon. Lovely. Well, I guess it'll hurt less than the missile launcher...
Building an infantry and a B-Copter from the bases...
Before launching a rather complicated, squiggly assault. One bomber clears out a neotank, my tank drives round the back of the 3HP infantry to shoot it, and my other bomber wriggles its way upfield to take out an artillery.
General moving and building.
Right, this time I will remember to attack the pipe seam.
And join together some mechs to generate a little extra money.
Which I can use to pump out a couple more infantry for the ol' technique score. Now let's see what Adder's got up his sleeve...
Well at least it's not another Sidewinder.
However, the medium tank that's been stoically guarding my HQ for goodness knows how long has finally fallen. Alas poor middie .
You know what this place needs?
Joining up the infantry for a) some more funds and b) to help keep my unit count below 50, because I'm in danger of bumping up against that.
Knocking down the pipe seam. I can now launch a two-pronged attack on these minicannons.
First though, there's an infantry sitting on my HQ. We'd better deal with that.
GET ORF MOI LAND!
And a bomber heads off to strike the first blow against the minicannons.
The pair of 7HP bombers do some cleanup work.
A couple of infantry combine to get rid of one of the infantry loitering around the HQ.
B-Copter removes artillery, and a tank trundles onto the HQ to damage the mech nearby.
A few snapshots of me finishing up the turn.
And I've managed to catch up on the technique front.
Oh dear, I left that mech in rocket range.
Best get him out of harm's way.
Two bombers combine to take down the right-hand minicannon.
The left minicannon is finished off, the centre one attacked. Can I finish it this turn?
No, no I can't. The 9HP bomber can't reach and it turns out the 3HP one is out of ammo (and might not have been able to finish the job anyway).
But I'll tell you one thing, killing this recon has charged up Copter Command again...
Twice in two days. Beat that, Adder.
Unfortunately it looks like I've hit the unit cap, so the game only drops off five infantry.
I'll join them anyway, so I can build a couple more.
Joining two infantry here for a different reason: to keep them alive.
Mech kills mech, copter kills infantry, other copter damages tank.
Copter finishes off tank, tank attacks artillery.
Building and welp, I hit the unit cap again.
Not that it matters - I'm safe now.
Right then, last day.
Before I do the formalities, let's kill a few more units.
The bombers work off some pent-up aggression by taking out some of the units near Adder's base.
3-0 to Sensei.
There's been some sort of mistake... Under these conditions... there's no way... we should have lost...
Now listen here, Adder. You should really try hard to avoid making me angry.
What? What did you do?
I'm an old man. I'm not looking for a fight. I want nothing more than to relax and bake my bones in the sun. So I'm warning you, stop now, while you still can. If not, I don't think I'll be able to restrain myself...
Well that showed him. You'd think he'd've learnt his lesson after three hammerings by Sensei, though...
Wow! He sure left in a hurry.
Vintage Sensei! Well done! Well done indeed!
Oh hey, 300 points. That went better than I might have hoped, considering Adder was walking all over my HQ at one point. Not to mention all the tactical errors I made. I guess this mission's a bit like Show Stopper in that respect: it's all about holding out until you can turn things around.
Shine on you crazy diamond. This leaves one more regular mission in Yellow Comet before the factory: Duty & Honor (or Honour, as I'm itching to say, but I guess a mission name's a mission name). So...
Tune in next time for...
... holding cities to ransom!
... duty, and honour!
... laser cannons that aren't as good as ones we've faced earlier in Hard Campaign.