Part 16: The Siege of Lazuria
Our continuing pathway north leads us onto the northern continent, which we can presume to be Lazurian territory. Greyfield, in his infinite wisdom, decides to press into the heart of the enemy territory.
:This will not be easy. Their forces are led by General Forsythe.
: I learned about him the academy. He was the hero of the Lazurian Seige! But that was twenty years ago... Is he really still fighting?
: Forsythe... What are the chances I would be facing him? And here of all places...
: What do you mean, Captain? ...Captain?
: Lin, have we heard anything from Greyfield?
: He's on his way here with the main force of the NRA.
: Um...what's active surveillance?
: It means we push directly into the enemy to assess their strength.
: It's a horrible strategy. At least for us. It would be better to wait for Greyfield to arrive before attacking. I can't figure out if he's a coward or he wants us to die. Perhaps it's both.
: I don't think we can rely on his forces anyway.
Yes, that's right. We're the cannon fodder to clog up guns before Greyfield arrives and kills Lazuria. In theory, anyway.
In the south, having just landed, are our forces. There's a cruiser just off screen to the west, and a couple conspicuous tiles on the map. Completely impassable by any unit, meteor chunks have 99 points of health to take down before being destroyed. When destroyed, they simply become plains tiles. The one the cursor is hovering over won't be destroyed, because infantry can cross mountains, and so can planes.
Instead, we focus on the tank north of the rockets. Our southern infantry also crosses the river to place himself close to the airport.
The mech jumps into the APC and goes for a ride up to the factory across the river.
Before any other units get moved, lets take a look at the Lazurian forces. Spread out, they cover the northern half rather effectively. Also helping them are those two meteor chunks with plasma arcing between them. To use an analogy, the plasma is like the pipelines in Advance Wars 2 and Dual Strike. It's impassable and unbreakable. The meteors themselves are like the pipe seams, break them and you can get through. The difference here? Break a connecting meteor and the entire plasma chain goes down too. You better believe this gets used in maps later to create mazes and choke points.
Our forces begin moving northward towards the enemy, and nothing is bought this turn. Let's see who we face today.
: You again, Caulder?
: Are you still not tempted to try my exotic weapons? You could alter the course of this war with the touch of a button.
: Now see here! I told you already--
: But I'm sure that is a sacrifice they would gladly make.
A score = 20. He'd be killing TWENTIES of his own men! Granted, it IS post apocalyptic. This may well be half the Lazurian survivors we're talking about here.
: Twenty years ago, I faced Rubinelle in this very spot.
:No prisoners were killed. No unlawful weapons were used. And when the enemy surrendered, we treated them with dignity! War is cruel and pitiless, but soldiers are still men. Your suggestion is an insult to all who lay their lives down on this soil.
: ...You are a strange old man. But it seems clear your mind is made up.
Ominous. Very ominous, Caulder.
Forsythe gathers up his own men up north, retreating the damaged tank. This also leaves us roughly in control of the southern half entirely, along with the eastern flank. I'm good with this.
To start our turn, our sub advances and dives in anticipation of the battleship.
Capturing! And a friendly tank rolls over to cover the mech. How nice.
More movement. Still no purchasing. I have a plan, you see.
Beginning of turn three, Forsythe's Cruiser strikes our own, and the battleship gets in range of the sub. I could have gone after the carrier, but I deemed the battleship a higher priority to cripple. This will likely spell the end for my sub's usefulness though, since Forsythe will be able to see it next turn.
Ever more capturing. We are getting some pretty nice cash out of this, at least.
I move the copter up to block off the pathway, as well as take out the mech trying to capture the city, with some assistance from the rockets. I can't go after that city just yet, because exactly five tiles away is the enemy rocket. That said, the city comes in handy, because the AI loves using their infantry first, and seemingly always prioritizes capturing a city. The rockets move in range to cover that city nicely.
We've built up a nice chunk of change the past couple turns, so I build a battleship. Nothing can go wrong with this plan. Everything else moves up and positions itself around that B copter.
Ugh, there goes my sub's use. At least the battleship thought it was brilliant in attacking the cruiser instead of fleeing.
I make the battleship pay for that folly.
Fun fact, as a rule of thumb, 1 HP on a sub = 1 HP of damage to a carrier. Had I been able to hide the sub, both carrier and battleship would have been killed now.
Containment established in the center, and the East slowly moves up to continue capture. The missiles are bouncing around, waiting for the launch of the seaplane the carrier built last turn.
Day 5. Somehow that cruiser lives through both seaplane and B Copter strike. Not bad, but it's still screwed. Sub also got blown up, so my naval force is kind of gone.
The cruiser retreats, and I foolishly place my battleship in a bad spot. It's in range of both the seaplane and B copter, and the carrier produced a second seaplane last turn. To aid in this defence, I move the missiles over to cover all sides of the battleship, and build an AA to help cover the missiles.
I also have enough money to get a bomber to aid in the advance to Forsythe's HQ.
The bike captures the port, artillery and Md tank take out the enemy tank, and B copter and mech combine to take out a dropped off infantry.
Welp. That battleship looks kinda terrible, doesn't it?
Missiles blow up the seaplane to give the battleship room to run, and the battleship does so, also firing at the cruiser when it reaches it's destination.
At the main front, rockets nearly kill the advancing infantry, and a tank and mech destroy the enemy AA.
Bomber moves up, and an Md tank is bought at the forward factory.
Day 7, and the B Copter takes a shot at our missiles. In response, the AA takes a shot at the copter, to better results. Both the missiles and the battleship retreat to heal up. One or the other will die, since both are in range of that seaplane.
Forsythe, taking a page out of Advance Wars players everywhere, places his T copter where the cursor was to stall our advance. It would have worked if the tank and Mech couldn't combine to take it out.
I then drop bombs on the poor infantry the T Copter vainly tried to defend.
The rockets take out the infantry that retreated to heal, and a new sub is purchased. I still love having it be auto submerged on purchase.
I don't love losing my battleship with it only firing once. I need vengeance.
Missiles and AA strike back at the seaplane, and the sub moves out to bother the carrier that hasn't moved since taking a hit. I think I blew out it's engines.
Time to break this stalemate. The bomber swings around the plasma, and devastates the rockets.
With that threat almost neutralized, everything moves forward. Neutral city and one of Forsythe's begin being converted to the Rube cause.
Day 9, and the carrier finally moves. Towards my sub. Which will leave seaplanes with almost nowhere to refuel and rearm at.
Look at that number. Just beautiful.
Seaplanes are surprisingly durable. Living through a full health level 2 AA gun is no small feat. Still, it has one shot, and 21 fuel remaining. With 2 HP. He's done.
To prepare for any possible threat (mainly that last seaplane, and the fact Forsythe does have an airport at his HQ, I build an AA and a fighter. I promptly forget about the fighter for a day.
Artillery takes out the rocket, bomber comes back and hides from the seaplane, Md tank plans on sacrificing itself to weaken the artillery, and our rocket and other Md tank take out Forsythe's damaged Md tank.
I place down a tank line to help cover the return attack.
: I say! Am I speaking to the Rubinelle commander?
: You are. I want to talk to you about the battle that took place twenty years ago. Do you remember who was leading the Rubinelle forces?
: I never knew his name, but he was a truly great soldier. The battle raged for a hundred days, with neither side willing to yield.
: He was a man of honor and courage. I feel I almost knew him.
: I see... Please know I took no pleasure in his death.
: You have nothing to apologize for. He understood the path he walked. After he died here, our government blamed him for the defeat.
: Thank you for your words, General Forsythe. May luck be with you.
: I wish it had not come to this. But it cannot be helped now. If you are truly your father's son, I"m proud to face you in my final battle.
I like this conversation. Forsythe and Brenner are such chill dudes during battle. Shame we have to deal with Greyfield as our superior, and not Forsythe. We could have tea in the middle of battle.
Due to my stupidity, I forgot to grab a start of turn screenshot. Forsythe's damaged seaplane attacked the (now) 9 HP tank, and his other seaplane blew up our rockets. Where the rig is now had an enemy Md tank that attacked an Md tank of ours, which I retreated and joined with the other Md tank, and our bomber destroyed the then damaged Md tank. Mech and B copter in the East damage the meteor, and the 7 HP tank attacked the enemy mech. The remainder of the forces moved around, and I bought another AA gun. The fighter, stupidly, remains on the airport.
Day 11. The full health seaplane continues its rampage by taking out the missile battery. The enemy recon also took out the rig, and the mech attacked the tank. The seaplane, being out of ammo, floats on by lazily.
The other seaplane is now damaged and out of ammo. Airborne crisis averted for the time being.
Artillery shells the enemy tank, I build a battleship, and move units around some.
I also remember I have a fighter.
The meteor has 21 HP left. 21 HP, coincidentally, is the exact amount that B copter will deal to it.
The bomber continues being overzealous and flattens a 2 HP mech to gain Veteran. The B copter opts to not destroy the meteor until I'm ready, and an infantry crosses over the prepare to capture more Lazurian cities.
Oh no. A tank has attacked my artillery. Whatever shall I do.
The northern seaplane also crashed, being out of fuel.
What I shall do is first attack the mech with the artillery. Then I remove that pesky plasma by blowing up that meteor. The onslaught commences.
AA on the island pulls up and takes care of the infantry. Regular tank blows up the enemy artillery. Other AA kills the Mech. Md tank parks on the factory to prevent more spawns. Off screen, the bomber blows up the tank.
Against all better judgment, I build a Duster. Also a rig, to better judgment.
Capturing commences on Forsythe's cities. The fighter positions itself to be in range of a Duster Forsythe built.
Day 13 arrives, and we kinda have Forsythe all nicely bottled up. That T copter is flying towards my HQ though.
I thoroughly enjoy that the Duster got first strike and is still going to die from the Fighter it damaged.
Forsythe's building hemorrhage continues.
I get the AA and Duster in position for countering the T copter, and build another bomber for fun. The only other thing to happen is an AA killing that infantry at the end of the bridge.
Day 14. Forsythe is about to lose that south factory, and he's running low on units on his island. I have another problem to deal with first though. That T copter.
FUCKING DUSTERS. IT IS A TIN CAN ON ROTORS HOW CAN YOU NOT KILL IT.
Right, anyway. I complete the capture of the buildings, if only to prevent certain units from being bought on the island.
Then I run amok.
Md tank for... some reason.
Day 15 starts with the duster killing the T copter, and the AA killing the Infantry it dropped.
I build a T air for no real reason.
Not every day you can kill an AA with a B Copter.
That Mech. That fucking Mech. Making me waste a day.
That Mech decided life wasn't worth living at 3 HP, and suicided on the east tank. Alright then.
Recon goes boom, Bike starts capturing. Next turn should be obvious. (I finish the HQ capture)
: The war is over for me...
: Finally, the war is over.
And we ended the war in STYLE. Now, let's actually talk to Forsythe, face to face.
: But, General--
: We have no choice. We must surrender or face annihilation. I'll tell them I started this war and that it was my responsibility. I'll tell them that I forced our people to arms.
: Never! You fought to protect us all! You can't take the blame for a war you didn't want!
: Stand down! That's an order, Flight Lieutenant. My final order...
: General, we can't--
: I shall speak to him and stop this madness. Gage? Do you hear what I'm saying?
Beep boop. Orders received. Require more WD-40 for mission to be success.
Cut to new section of same field
: I would ask that you accept defeat and bring this war to an end. There is no need for further bloodshed.
: You are correct, sir. And I will surrender my forces to you on one condition.
: What is that?
: Responsibility and blame for this war rests with me alone. I ask that you show mercy to all troops who served under my banner.
: I'm grateful to you, Captain. I had heard about you, you know? Of the battalion know as Brenner's Wolves. ...And now I know that everything I heard was true. You are a man of unimpeachable honor.
: Please, do not praise me. I wish only to end this idiotic war and return to helping survivors.
: And, Captain?
D'aww... I like these two talking to each other.
Even more of the same field!
: All right, Rube! I'm ready! Now you'll see how a Lazurian faces death!
: Um... I'm sorry, what?
: Do it! Pull the trigger! I know how cold blooded you Rubes are!
Hey, Tasha? Still facing Will when you say that. Come on now.
: Um... Look, I don't know what you think I'm like, but the war is over. You surrendered to Captain Brenner, and he's going to honor that. We're not going to shoot unarmed prisoners. That would be horrible.
: Ha! Where were your noble thoughts after the meteor strike?! You started this war! You offered peace and then stabbed us in the back!
: What? No! No, we would... Rubinelle would never attack civilian targets!
: Tell that to your beloved Greyfield!
: That's...that's not...possible...
: Oh, really? It's not? You don't sound very convinced of that, kid. Listen to me. Greyfield is evil. There is nothing he won't do to seize power. I can't forgive him, and I can't forgive you for fighting at his side. That's why we fought you. To avenge the deaths of the Lazurian innocents!
Wait, Greyfield is EVIL? NO! I can't possibly believe that!
...I couldn't type that with a straight face. I'm sorry.
Back to Brenner's field area
: ...Too late to help us...
: Hear me! The New Rubinelle Army has won a decisive and historic victory! And now I, Admiral Greyfield, would speak to the leader of this Lazurian rabble!
You did passably well... beat the same spot your father failed at for a hundred days. I mean really, how much income was he getting when he was here? Just buy a bunch of bombers and battleships, mission complete.
: You and your wretched army are a pathetic spectacle! A disgrace!
: Enough! General Forsythe has surrendered honorably and brought the war to an end. Striking a prisoner is against all rules of military law!
: Military law? Meaningless pieces of paper! We are the victors! We have crushed our enemies likes flies!
: Now, Captain Brenner! I will usher in the rule of King Greyfield the Mighty! Waylon! Dispose of this trash.
There's a crack that is supposed to be a gunshot here
: General Forsythe!
: Captain Brenner.. R-remember... Your p-promise...
: Damn you, Greyfield! He had surrendered! He was unarmed! Why did you shoot him?!
: He was a Lazurian, and death is all he deserved.
: Aw, shucks. I hate to be the bad guy and all, but you're gonna have to stop right there.
: You will pay for this, Greyfield...
: Listen to you! Squawkin' away like a crow on a wire. This is Greyfield's world now, brother! Ain't no one going to help you!
: Take the Lazurian dogs to the internment center for execution. My great victory is almost complete!
What a DICK. I actually LIKED Forsythe! At least he has character that wasn't just "apocalypse? MY TURF NOW BITCHES!"
Hooray? We got him because he died.
We become deserters! It's not nearly as awesome as you think.