The Let's Play Archive

Advance Wars: Dual Strike

by cosmicPostman

Part 29: Chapter 29 (Battle) - There Is An Excess Of Tanks In This Area

Update 29 (Battle) - There Is An Excess Of Tanks In This Area

Welcome back to Advance Wars, folks. So, moving on to a new map after some less lethal battles. Couldn't keep away from Black Hole forever, of course.

So, for this battle, Sasha and Jake are heading the red team (Sasha's got the close-range firepower boost, Jake's taking the ranged firepower boost, you'll see why later) and the new Yellow Comet COs will be the blue team.

We're ready to roll, anyhow, so let's get started. There's a lot to do on this map!

Of course, I'm still holed up in my office feeling sorry for myself reworking my strategies, so it's not me handling the actual battle. I'll leave that up to the others.

Today’s Deployments
Red Team
Dave, Infantry
Alfonse, Infantry
Rin, Infantry
Felix, Infantry
Boris, Infantry
Ivan, Infantry
Fleur, Infantry
Michael, APC
Inessa, Recon
Selena, Medium Tank
Ingo, Rockets
Yakov, Rockets

Blue Team
Vanessa, Infantry
Arqa, Infantry
Minerva, Infantry
Lysander, Mech
Dymek, Mech
Iago, Recon
Lowell, Tank
Andromeda, Tank
Kyril, Tank
Sofia, Tank
Talora, Artillery
Kiran, Artillery

This powder can't slow down my heavy metal. C'mon, let's roll out!

I just hope my dude's alright. Let's show him what we can do even without his guidance.


-----------~~~~THE ROSE REPORT~~~~-----------

I am Rose Kuroda, eleven years of age. I shall be delivering the summary of the battle for the battle in my dude's stead. I am... unused to this, so my apologies if I make any errors.

The red team deploys Dave, Rin and Alfonse to begin capturing nearby territory - particularly, as we established previously, the com towers will be quite useful. There's not much threat in a single foot soldier, so I do not foresee any problems here.

Rachel worked us over earlier, so we've gotta show 'em what we've got this time!

Hah ha ha. Yes, we'll manage all right. Let's start by securing these properties around us.

Now we deal with the blue team... my own soldiers.

The blue team start off in close proximity to the Black Hole forces and HQ. Ordinarily, one might think that this allows us the chance for a quick capture, but we have not the funds nor the units to mount an assault on the HQ just yet. Our goal, as Sensei suggested, is to capture nearby properties first. That airport is looking rather tempting.

We deploy Vanessa and Arqa first.

"Arqa, you paying attention? We've got things to capture, and not much time!"

Arqa salutes immediately. "I'm not the same beauty-obsessed soldier you first started training! Well, I wouldn't mind a manicure after this battle, but I'm ready to fight, Commander Vanessa!"

Vanessa nods. "Excellent. Let's get started, then - the quicker we're out of this freezing cold, the better, frankly!"

Black Hole's turn... it begins. Our primary goal of this first part of the battle is clear: limiting the enemy's funds in order to prevent them from deploying too many dangerous units. In particular, they have some properties on the red team's island which we need to capture; the blue team will harry the enemy's infantry in order to slow their capturing of the bases around here in the meantime.

Jugger has no need of hair. Black bomb lab nearby. Threat of Allied Nations stealing the map: high.

I highly doubt they will find it--there are simply too many places to search. It's much more important that we stay warm. Now, come over here, Jugger.

Situation: awkward. Initiating subject change. Jugger forecast calls for snow. Snowfall equals high fuel consumption. Must attack today. Attack today.

Aha aha ha... Attack before it snows? You're a dutiful one, aren't you? Do you have a space heater in there? Yes? No? Oh, very well, let's go.

The Black Hole soldiers begin capturing nearby properties. They have no bases with which to deploy units, and unfortunately, we cannot act fast enough to prevent them from getting this one. If we are lucky, however, this will be the only base that they manage to obtain.

That is how our first round of combat goes. So far, we have little to fear.

It's time for the red team to strike out.

Dave approaches the first of the Black Hole cities - he is in range of the infantry, but I have accounted for this.

We deploy a recon, Inessa, to help defeat that infantry. Dave must capture that city as soon as possible. You see, there is a crucial thing to note about the com towers - unlike most properties, they do not provide 1000 funds per turn, and as such, offer no monetary benefit. If we wish to cut into Black Hole's funds, capturing the com towers is useless. We can do that later on, once we have established a foothold.

Meanwhile, Rin heads east to support Dave. Alfonse has a different mission, and heads directly south to complete it. You will note that despite looking separate, the red team's island connects to the blue team's mainland via the very south and very westernmost shoals; this will prove crucial to helping support the blue team.

...I am sorry. I have been led to believe that Commander my dude inserts some levity or comedy into his battle reports, but I do not find myself particularly comic. I hope you can accept a more strategically-minded summary of the battle, rather than one with the f-word used multiple times per sentence. I am sure my dude will be back soon.

The blue team cannot do much more than begin capturing properties. There are several around, and they will need a considerable income in order to hold off a potential Black Hole assault in future turns.

To that end, we will need yet more foot soldiers. Minerva is deployed, too. We will require that airport - especially since we are using Sensei. It would be foolish not to take advantage of his battle copter superiority.

We deploy Iago as well. The relative cheapness of the recon, coupled with its high movement capabilities, make them a good option for dealing with infantry units.

Black Hole, of course, will continue attempting to find an advantage. It is fortunate for them that I am only reporting on this battle, and that I am not participating. They will get away with just a thorough defeat at my compatriots' hands, rather than the complete annihilation they would face if I took to the field.

I... feel like I can open up a little in this report. Though I scored a victory against my dude, I feel... a little hollow. He was the ultimate challenge, the final test for a strategist... and now that I have won, I wonder where it is I can move up to. That is why I am not helping in this battle. I am giving Vanessa a chance to practice her skills instead.

Black Hole's troops have begun capturing property; the base and the city fall under their control. My dude has a counter for this, doesn't he? I shall update it for him.

This [Redacted] Captures A Property: 26

As predicted, the other infantry goes for Dave, bringing him down to about 50% of his combat effectiveness. Dave counterattacks for approximately 20% of the opponent's battle capabilities, rendering them weak and open to being destroyed by the other red team soldiers.

"Heh!" Dave grunts, feeling the battle lust rising up within him. "That's all the extra firepower your little com towers can muster? It'll take twice that to kill me!"

"No, Dave, focus on capturing!" Rin shouts. "I'll take him out, don't worry!"

The enemy COs have decided to switch.

Kindle's strength is drawn from her properties, so it makes sense to switch to Jugger's chance of increased damage whilst they are still capturing cities. Once they have a few cities captured, I imagine they will switch back to Kindle's superior firepower; I do not look forward to that. We must establish a good defensive presence for the blue team before then.

The red team can all but delete any remaining threats to them this turn, thankfully.

Brrr. This cold is making my old bones cranky.

I pre-empted snow and brought my coat.

Heh heh. You're always well-prepared, aren't you, Rose?

I would like to think I am prepared for all eventualities. I just hope Vanessa will do just as well in this battle... she has not made a step wrong thus far.

Inessa approaches and attacks the enemy infantry, though she is unable to finish off the foe.

"Aw, man! He's still coming forward, Dave, watch out!" Inessa says. "I really thought I had him. I gotta work on my aim..."

"Not on my watch! Dave, I have your back!" Rin says, darting forward.

Rin is able to defeat the enemy infantry without sustaining any damage herself. This puts her in the best possible position to capture the other buildings around.

"Thanks, kid." Dave says, refraining to mention the fact that he could have taken the enemy himself without much trouble. "You've got my back, just like I've got yours, huh?"

"Y-yeah! I want you to rely on me, too. I've been- well, this whole army's been relying on you for too long. Time to start giving back, I think!"

Dave chuckles. "Well, thanks. I wouldn't mind having a little pressure taken off, certainly..."

Now we deploy Michael as an APC and Felix as his passenger. They're on a secret mission from me - I have suspected that there is a map in the vicinity, and I'd like the pair of them to hunt it down. There's several possible places it could be hidden, but my suspicions lie with the northernmost properties, the ones to the east of the red team. They'll be checking those ones first, and if I am right - which I always am - they will be there.

Now back to the blue team. You will note that the COs have not switched much - this is an intentional choice. Since we are playing defensively until we build up enough of a battlefield presence to take on Black Hole, there is little point in having Grimm in charge. His wildness means that his defensive properties are... lacking. Sensei has no such weaknesses in his defences.

We continue to capture necessary properties. Our aim is to amass 7 properties or more, giving us the ability to deploy one tank every round - our other aim is to just make more funds per turn than Black Hole. This battle is a race.

Our recon, Iago, charges out to face the foe. I am concerned that the enemy may deploy a tank next turn, but he can outrun and retreat from such a threat, so I am sure Vanessa has things under control. Let us just sit tight and enjoy the thrilling combat.

I, um, do apologise if it's not thrilling. I like to take Marlon into battles with me, so I can hug him when I am not fighting. Some might call that childish, but... it reminds me of an old friend. I do not know how you pass the time during the slower parts of a battle, but I would advise finding a way. I cannot entertain with the ease that my dude can. He even makes meetings fun... mostly because he whispers funny things to me when he's supposed to be listening to the other COs speak. I have to try very hard not to giggle.

How odd. Black Hole had the funds to deploy a tank, but elected not to. I suppose this is a mistake on their part that we can take advantage of.

But first, we must see how red team are getting on. Once Black Hole's funds are cut off, we then need to get the com towers to reduce their firepower a little. Anything we can do to make life easier for the blue team, we must do.

Dave has made a start, thankfully. He captures the first of the properties, and can now use the supplies to heal his wounds before he moves on.

Rin makes a start on the next one, whilst Inessa follows Alfonse southwards. Felix loads up into Michael, en route for the east.

I really don't understand where my dude finds comedy in what should be a rather serious battle. I suppose we differ in many ways, despite our similar skills in strategy. He seems almost impossible to understand fully.

As an example, I have noticed over the last few years - my dude vanishes on the same night every year, April 18th. Not even Nell knows where he goes, even though we've asked. Furthermore, as far as I'm aware, he's never told anybody his birthday. Someone as bombastically loud as him... you'd think he'd announce it from the rooftops, but no. We've never known when his birthday is. It's why I always endeavour to get him a good Christmas present: because it's the only time of the year I can get a present for him.

He's a strange one.

Anyhow, forgive me for getting distracted. Two more infantry - Boris and Ivan - are deployed. As there are plenty more locations up here to capture, it seems suitable that as many soldiers be put on the task as possible.

The blue team have no such luxuries, however.

Iago can deal solid damage to this infantry, though after restoring their wounds on the base, they'll be operating at around 70% efficiency. That should still slow down any buildings they attempt to capture, however.

At the very least, one of our foot soldiers can get started capturing the airport. Once Sensei has that, there should be no more problems.

In the meantime, though, we do need some stronger firepower. It seems like Vanessa has elected to go with a tank; in particular, our new hire, Lowell. I am still not sure what to make of him. He was rather overconfident during the mock battle, and he still has much to learn.

Then again, my dude has always been overconfident, and it pays off for him. And... well, I suppose I have been in the past, too. Some of the things I said to Hawke and Flak during our previous campaign... I do believe it is possible that I have a confident streak in me. And if I do, I am blaming my dude for it.

The rest of the soldiers continue advancing. It is a little more forward than I would have been, but Vanessa is more hotheaded than I am, so I suppose that makes sense. I am glad Vanessa and I were able to become friends, in all honesty. I did not realise she was jealous of me at first, but she confessed that she had learned a lot from me in the previous campaign, and promised to continue following my example. That took me by surprise.

The reason it surprised me is because I have always thought of myself as a child, striving to follow my dude's example. I idolised him, to an extent. Even my coat is modelled after his own. So to hear that someone else was following my example was quite humbling. Since then I have attempted to set a good example, and that involves not following my dude's example in professional situations. He's a brilliant strategist, but I cannot imagine how stressful it is to be his employer.

My apologies, I am rambling again. This was the kind of thing I used to discuss with Tina in our letters. I have not written to her in a little while, actually... I ought to. Meanwhile, Black Hole troops are continuing to slowly extend their influence.

This [Redacted] Captures A Property: 27

One of the soldiers approaches Vanessa. How unfortunate - that will slow down our capture of the airport.

"Oh, no you don't!" Vanessa growls. "Soldiers, get ready to crush this guy! We can't lose our footing now!"

"Uh, about that, Van..." says Minerva, looking over at the enemy HQ with worry in her eyes.

"What is it?"

Iago looks up in horror as a tank rumbles out of the base nearest to him. Minerva winces.

"There's, uh, something more dangerous on the way. We might need to fall back."

"A tank?! So soon?" Vanessa says, her face falling. "Right, hold on, let me think for a second... how do we hold these guys off..?"

We shall leave Vanessa to grapple with that for a moment. Back to the red team and their odyssey of capturing the properties all around.

Another Black Hole property has been captured - they will have to capture plenty more properties if they wish to recoup the funds they have lost. That puts the Allied Nations at a slight advantage.

Speaking of slight advantages, Alfonse has now reached the mainland and is capturing a base. Allowing the red team to deploy units so close to the battlefield may come in useful.

Otherwise, the red team is busy capturing various properties. There isn't much they can do to contribute until they get more funds.

The blue team, meanwhile, are struggling for all of the funds they can acquire. Now that the enemy has deployed a tank, we must respond in kind. Thankfully, we do already have Lowell, who will be a useful defensive wall.

We need more, though, so Andromeda is deployed too. A dear friend of mine, she has really come into her own over the last campaign. I can never find the right words to tell her how proud I am of her, but I suppose it matters not. What matters is that I am her friend, and she is mine.

Despite the looming threat of the tank, Vanessa does not want to retreat unless she absolutely has to, so she gets to work thinning out the rest of the foes - firstly, Iago defeats this infantry unit. We do have to stop capturing the airport to achieve this, but I am sure we will get it again soon.

And at the very least, we can capture a few other properties in the meantime.

Iago and Lowell are a somewhat stable defensive presence. Unfortunately, I don't think either of them can comfortably survive a tank attack multiple times. In the case of Iago, if he were not on the airport, he could be destroyed in a single blow. Vanessa is playing dangerous games today, and I am not sure I like them.

We shall see what Black Hole thinks of them.

The tank goes for Lowell, who does not take the hit well, but at the very least, he survives.

And another tank joins the first.

"Dammit..." Vanessa says, pulling a grim face. "Right, we've gotta fall back, I'm afraid. I don't think we can push through both of these tanks without some reinforcements."

"They are on the way, according to HQ... so we just need to held, survive, hold out for a little longer." replies Andromeda gently.

This map is very different for the two teams. The red team is having a rather relaxing time of things, but the blue team are struggling immensely to hold out. Once we have that hidden map, we can put all of our attention onto taking out Black Hole.

This base is rather crucial. Now that the red team has nothing to do but capture property, they'll be deploying rockets in order to harass the Black Hole deployments coming from that base.

Meanwhile, my advance team has arrived at the suspected map location. Only one way to find out now - Felix must capture the nearby property.

And finally, we make a start on capturing the com towers. These will not be terribly useful for us, but taking them away from Black Hole is useful enough, so we will endeavour to do that with all haste.

Alfonse finishes capturing the base in the southern area, and is rejoined by Inessa, running low on fuel. The snow is certainly making traversal harder, doubling fuel costs. Most units aren't moving far enough for it to be a concern, but our high-movement units will struggle.

Back to the blue team, in a dire situation. I can see a way out, but I am not the one in charge currently. There is an odd feeling of helplessness in a situation like that. I must simply rely on Vanessa... and I do. I trust her.

Andromeda moves forward to block off the foe from entering the blue team's mountain area, and arranges her units in such a way that none of them can be attacked. That should help somewhat, though it only defers the problem, not deletes it outright.

She... seems to be throwing tanks at the problem until it goes away. This is Kyril, Kanbei's nephew. He's quite a decorated soldier after the last campaign, so it must be a relief to the troops to have him around. Ordinary soldiers deserve to be recognised for their efforts - I said as much to Kanbei in the previous campaign, and he listened to me. Quite a surprise - normally he is rather stubborn.

Let's just hope the enemy isn't too aggressive. If they push too far, even the red team may not be able to help out.

Here it comes. I predict that the tank will simply try and break through Andromeda's defence. She is on a property, though, so that would not be a sensible decision.

...Hm. They're after the airport. Vanessa can't play defensively as well as capture it, so what must be done here..? We cannot give Black Hole the only airport on the battlefield. That would be ruinous.

As predicted, the tank goes for Andromeda. It is a roughly even trade, which is all we can ask for. Both tanks have lost 40% of their functionality, but Andromeda can be repaired as she is on a property. Advantage, blue team.

The other tank comes over to support it. I don't believe that was a wise decision from Black Hole, but we cannot complain about good fortune.

Anyhow, we must not distract ourselves from the map's first main goal: getting that intelligence.

Oh - and capturing com towers, too.

Word! Let's go gank the rest of those bad boys!

Felix begins capturing Suspect A. I hope this pays off.

The rest of the troops continue capturing other things. It does not matter what - all that matters is that they are steadily accruing funds.

And this is why: we deploy Ingo, the first soldier aiming to disrupt Black Hole from a distance. He will have to get into a suitable position first, but it should be invaluable for the blue team.

We also could do with another infantry, just to speed up the funds-gathering process - this is Fleur, one of my fellow pilots in my very first campaign. That was so long ago now... I still do miss being a true part of Orange Star. Yellow Comet may be my country, but Orange Star accepted me like nobody else did. I want to repay that someday.

Alfonse is sneaking ahead to try and get another base, closer to the action. The tanks rolling around are going to make that difficult, however. Still, this is how the red team fares at the end of this next turn.

The blue team has more to do if they want to be quite as comfortable.

Andromeda hits back at the opposing tank, weakening it further until it has reached around 10% functionality. It will not be much of a threat now - the one behind it is much more dangerous.

Andromeda joins up with Lowell in order to conserve their tanks' integrity. That should render them able to handle the stronger tank if it decides to approach.

Kyril, meanwhile, must press on and attack the infantry on the airport. The enemy have forced us into an undesirable situation: we would like to play defensively until the red team can support us, but we must approach and attack, otherwise we lose the airport to them.

Yet more tanks will be necessary - Vanessa calls upon Sofia next.

Things do not look quite as bad as they did before - it is only Kyril who is at some risk. Let us hope the enemy do not realise that.

We will strike back once we have the firepower. Black Hole is only fuelling our eventual counterattack.

Kyril has managed to delay the enemy's grip over the airport by another day, but we must destroy that infantry if we are to guarantee that we can reclaim it.

The enemy tank approaches from the forest and strikes Kyril. It is a brutal blow, and he may have to retreat next turn. However, the enemy tank is now rather out of the way, which we may be able to turn to our advantage.

...That is unfortunate. Kindle is back, and she is generally more powerful than Jugger. We will have to tread carefully.

...Ah, "tread". That could be a pun on tank treads. Perhaps that is the kind of thing that my dude finds amusing in his reports. Well, that and copious profanity.

Now then, let us find that intel.

As predicted, the tanks are keeping Alfonse from advancing. He can't grab that base at this moment.

He and Inessa retreat for now. We will be back for that one.

Another com tower has been claimed. We are making steady progress.

That said, these properties are not as important. There are more important things to do.

First, Ingo moves out - once he is in range of the base, the enemy will be hard-pressed to hold us off. He isn't there yet, though.

His recently-vacated base is filled by Yakov, the other of our rocket users. He'll be doing the same as Ingo, just from another location. A pair of rockets are a powerful force.

And finally, we clear the first hurdle of this map - when Felix captures this property, he finds it, exactly as I predicted.

Well done. Hmm... It's much closer than I would have expected it to be. Let's transmit this intel to Rachel and have her send out an expeditionary force.

For now, we shall leave it there. That said, this was exhausting, and I don't think my dude is going to be back until the end of this battle, so perhaps it would be best if you decided who will narrate the second half of the battle. I am happy to continue summarising the battle, but I can understand if you would prefer someone a bit more entertaining, like Lucy.

No matter. Thank you for listening to my report. Commander Rose Kuroda out.


Update 30 (Intermission) - Think Before You Speak