Part 5: Oh Ho Ho!Last time, we defeated the Beast at his own hideout, pissing him off again. Business as usual, really. This time, things are different, for today...
...We go north.
: There are still some buildings standing. Maybe the people survived too.
: At first glance, this city seems extraordinarily well preserved.
: All right. Spread out and look for survivors.
This worked well last time, Brenner...
This song was used in Chapter 3, but it's more fitting here. It's considered to be this guy's theme.
: Yes, I hear you. Are you hurt? Do you need assistance?
: Please, my good man! Not one step further! Do you come in peace?
Yep, looking casual sure helped. Did we hide the tanks, at least?
: I do. I'm Captain Brenner. I lead the 12th Battalion of the Rubinelle Army.
: You don't say! Why, that's simply marvelous! Welcome, Captain Brenner, welcome! It is a great honor to have you here!
: Thank you. Who are you?
: My name is Dr. Morris. I was elected to speak for the free citizens of New Wolfington.
: Are you in charge here?
: Oh ho ho! I guess you could say that. I told them I wasn't really the man for the job, but they chose me anyway.
: Hmm... Perhaps you didn't hear me correctly. I SAID that I used to be--
: I heard you. My unit is desperately short of supplies. Can your town spare food, medicine, or weapons? We will repay you however we can.
: Supplies, eh? Well, you see... (Gunfire occurs)
: Those weren't my men. I think we're under attack. I suggest you make yourself scarce, Doc. This could get ugly.
: They're tenacious. I'll give them that. Stupid...but tenacious.
: That factory seems undamaged. Can we get it up and running?
: Oh yes, it works. And that's a FACT! ...Get it? Fact? Factory? ...Ahem!
Dr. Morris, you are terrible at this.
: But I'm sure you are more familiar with that than I am. If you have the materials, you can use them to produce units.
: I've heard of such factories, but I've never operated one.
: Oh ho! It's easy as pie! We just need someone to capture them. If you do so, we will turn control of the factory over to you and your men. We will also provide you with what few troops we have.
: That will help. Thank you.
: I assume I can leave the military decisions to you, Captain?
: I think that's for the best. But at the risk of sounding ungrateful, why are you doing this?
: This is no ordinary band of soldiers you command, Captain. Am I right?
: This world is destroyed, yet you devote yourself to helping survivors. The people of New Wolfington saw fit to trust me. I hope I can trust you.
: I'll do all that I can. Now get to safety. There isn't much time.
Back to one of the best tracks in the game.
Alright, showtime. First, holy shit it's green. Dr. Morris' city sure seems like a great place. Anyway, we've got buildings now, so let's quickly go over them. The one to the left of the Mech is our HQ. Should that get captured by the enemy, we lose. To the north and south of it we have cities. Cities give 1000G a turn to spend at factories. The factory itself is to the north of the recon. The colors represent who owns them. The orange-red is us, grey is unowned, black (you can kind of see it under the easternmost tank of the enemy's) is the opponent's. There are other buildings, I'll give more detail on them as they show up. One other thing to mention is that units can be repaired by staying on an owned building over the course of a turn. They will regain 2HP a turn, provided you have the funds to do so (10% of the unit's total cost per HP). We'll see the cost of the units we've seen in a moment.
In any case, we need to procure more funds, so lets get some men moving. The mech moves to the East, and begins capturing the factory. The infantry moves northeast, capturing the unowned city, and the bike moves east as well, capturing that city.
Most Advance Wars maps start like this. It's rather painful to sit through, I realize.
The screen for capturing a city. Gone are the animations of a foot soldier jumping on the building to capture it that the older Advance Wars have. The 10 is how much we've captured so far, the 20 being how much you need to do it. The amount you capture is based on the HP of the unit doing the capturing. Thus, it takes 2 days for a full health unit to capture a property. I move our tank into a position to try and lure units forward in a way that won't come to bite me in the ass.
It also gives the infantry a bit of cover, not that it really needs it. Nothing can currently reach him until after he's done capturing the city. I move the rest of my units forward, trying to give a bit of an advantage to myself despite being down by almost twice the units.
: Swarm, roaches! Take what you can, and leave no one alive!
Oh good, it's YOU again. Somehow he manages to just keep throwing men at us. How large is this raider camp, anyway?
Beginning of Day 2, we start by finishing a capture on one of the cities. Normally I've cut out the tutorial talk, but I've always loved the lines for this one:
: Good! Restoring power to cities will boost your factory production. You see, factories use hard resources to generate a recalibrated--
: Whoa, wait. What? I'm sorry, I... I didn't understand a thing you just said.
: Sometimes I'm a bit too clever for my own good. Oh ho ho!
Dr. Morris: Dumbing things down to a 6 year old level for the non-scientists. I finish capturing the other city and the factory, the cluster my units together in the south to be able to strike anything that moves.
Like so. Let's hope this works out alright for us. The Beast still vastly outnumbers us, and we only just got our factory.
Start of Day 3, and we seem to be in a good spot. The Beast moved a couple things forward, in range of our main force. First though, I move the mech off the factory, causing Morris to let me know it's open for business. Let's see what we've got in there.
Hmm. Nothing we haven't already used. That's good. We build ourselves a tank to try and cut down the advantage the Beast has on us in that regard. We begin our attack, sending the recon to attack the bike capturing the city, and our tank to attack the Beast's recon.
Our artillery moves up as well, and is now in range of the city. Some last moves, I have our Infantry attack the bike, and move our own bike to flank our tank.
With nothing left to do, we leave ourselves to the hands of the Beast.
Crap. We lost our Bike, we're being flanked, and the low health recon has fled the scene. Let's begin cutting down the Beast in response. For starters, our artillery takes out the capturing bike. Then we move our mech northeast to slowly move him into the action. Now the fun begins.
21% damage against a 3 HP bike. This could be anywhere from 21% to 30% total HP that the bike really has. We could be lucky with this attack and take him out, as there is some variance in how much damage an attack actually does on a target.
Shit. The bike gets to live, as there are other more pressing concerns for us. For starters, our artillery is completely exposed, so we move our newly built tank to cover it from the north. Then, knowing how damaging mechs are if given the chance to strike first, we send our recon on what is effectively a suicide mission to lower the enemy mech's effectiveness. Finally, in a move not pictured above, we move our remaining tank to cover the east point of the artillery, and we also build another tank.
I knew this would happen, and I'm still annoyed by it. Our arty has been damaged, and we lost both our recon and our infantry. To bring the hurt to the Beast, we start by killing the targeted bike with our new tank. Our artillery also launches a weakened shot at the infantry now capturing the city. Now, what to do about that tank?
That'll work, and this is why I sent the recon out to weaken his mech. Last thing we need in an already disadvantageous situation is a crippled tank because I let the mech strike first. We move our own tank south one to finish off the Beast's.
Our artillery is in trouble no matter what we do from the Beast's northern tank, so we use it as bait while our last tank goes and harasses the enemy recon. And what to build now?
As if there was any other real option.
There goes our indirect attacks, but in this situation I'm not as bothered by it. We've reached a point where waiting on artillery to reach a good spot to fire will take too long. To begin our turn, the newly built tank goes and kills the infantry capturing the city. Then, with our two more experienced tanks, we take a crack at killing the Beast's attacking tank.
Which doesn't work. I guess our mech is getting one last shot at action, and our remaining tank moves onto the city and takes out the recon, which the Beast has both healed up and joined with his other recon. Joining (as I will demonstrate later this update) combines the HP, ammo, and gas of the similar units. An undamaged unit can join with a weakened one to rearm itself, but a weakened unit cannot join with an undamaged one. While that sounds paradoxical, it just means you can't select a weak unit and retreat it into a fresh unit, you'd have to use that fresh unit and move it to the front line.
The way Day 6 ends. The Beast really can't do a whole lot now. He moves his mech two spaces south, and ends. I use one of my already experienced tanks to finish it off, and advance towards his HQ.
Pretty good positioning, no matter which of our tanks the Beast attacks, we can almost surround it completely without fear of being shot by the artillery. Not that we'd need to in order to finish it off.
Day 8 dawns, and the Beast put us into the best position we possibly could have. We COULD attack the tank right now, but knowing that I'll have enough damage to finish the job, I opt to first attack an artillery and see how much damage we can pull.
Not bad at all. With that done, I move my 8 HP tank onto the Beast's city, and attack the enemy tank. The tank is then destroyed by our full health tank. With two crippled tanks, though, our power is diminished. Let's test our join capabilities.
As simple as moving one weakened unit onto another. The 6 HP is the tank that was on the city already after the attacks on the Beast's tank. We're joining it with our 4 HP tank, to fully heal it in one turn. We end turn without building a unit, as having too many units built will end up hurting our technique score. The Beast, unable to do anything, simply ends his turn. Day 9 starts, and we move one tank up to finish off the weakened artillery.
Nothing like looking at victory within grasp. Our west tank rolls up and damages the artillery.
: Your road ends here, Beast.
: Automated units only function near the factory where they were made. Stay too far, and you'll be left with useless lumps of metal!
: Thanks, Doc. This is a huge help.
Wait. Back up a second. I understand we can automate tanks, artillery, flares, and the like. But Infantry? Mechs? Bikes? Those are people. If I build 100 mechs, where do they go? Do they stand around at the factory remembering that one battle they took part in? Did I just grab a bunch of civilians, give them a rocket launcher that only works near the factory, and yell "go hog wild on the armor, boys!"? Dr.Morris said he'd provide "what few troops they have", but I doubt it could be a constant stream of infantry if I really wanted to do that.
IntSys, you're killing your own world of "low population means every life is precious". I see you TRIED with automation, but you dropped the ball in regards to the infantry units.
: Now, where were we...?
Where WERE we, Brenner? What were we doing out here? We found survivors, "where were we" would be moving on, they seem to be in good shape there.
: My days were spent running small rats through large mazes. When the world was destroyed, I dug out of my ruined lab and made my way here. There were so many sick and injured people... I just did what I could.
: We owe our lives to Dr. Morris! He saved us.
: Laughter is good for you, you know. You should try it sometime.
: He's an amazing man, but his jokes are TERRIBLE!
: Dr. Morris, you remind me a bit of Captain Brenner. I was near death when he found me. He saved my life. It's good that there are still people like you and him in this world.
: Well you shouldn't make me out to be some kind of hero, Will. I was a selfish man. I entered medicine to satisfy my curiosity, not help people. I'd never even seen a patient before the meteors struck. I guess such situations teach you what really matters, eh, Captain?
: I know what you mean.
: Yes! Exactly! But I fear we have other, more pressing issues to discuss. With your people and my people combined, we have several hundred mouths to feed. However, our supplies are running lower than a snake in a wheel rut!
: A shortage of food is hardly a joking matter, Doctor.
: Huh? Did I make a joke?
I dunno, the last time someone asked for our help, we got bit in the ass by him when we wanted our compensation. At least Morris acts nicer than the Mayor. And actually... y'know... HELPS people.
We help Dr.Morris! A new force appears! More terrible jokes (both mine AND Dr. Morris's)