Part 37: Campaign Mission 16S: Naval Clash! as SamiMission 16S: Naval Clash! as Sami (or "Now I know how all these enemy COs feel")
About Drake's CO Power... Did you notice that units on landers avoid taking damage? Use landers well, and you can unload troops fresh on the enemy's doorstep. Better luck next time!
I lost again? What's that, the third time? Now I know how all these enemy COs feel.
Okay, let's give this another go:
nell's got a point about the landers y'know
Huh? But I already knew about it. Is it really that big of a deal?
ok so the lander thing only saves you a few hit points but it's more of a general philosophy thing
How d'you mean?
you need to slow down a bit - hiding in forests inside my attack range isn't going to help you if you get spotted and if that happens then my rocket launcher and medium tank are going to rain down the hurt
So what you're saying is that I need to make you come to me?
drake why are you helping the enemy
relax this isn't real its just an expression of paul's subconscious thoughts
Hmm. Okay, I'll bear that in mind, Drake. Anyway, let's try this again, shall we Sami?
Here's a whole bunch of remixes of Sami's Theme. Although the weird thing is, I seriously cannot recognise Sami's Theme in the 1st place and 2nd place entries. They're of kinda variable quality, but you might find some you like. "Mushroom on the rail", "Mythril Sami" and "Meet Sami" were the three that stood out for me.
Yes, Nell. What is it?
It's about some units you're using. We need you to protect your landers! Orange Star is experiencing a shortage of them!
Eh, just pop down to the nearest port and you can grab one for 12000G, it's no biggie...
If you lose those units, you'll lose this battle.
.. oh. Hmm.
Landers? We have two of them. Do you mean protect both of them?
Yes, both of them!
Understood. We'll do our part. You can count on us!
I knew I could. Thanks Paul, Sami.
Have you noticed she acts differently around Nell?
Um... not especially. She's usually pretty professional about things. Relatively speaking.
Oh, OK. I guess it's just me.
Yo, Andy! Sami's givin' you the evil eye!
I've gotta stop thinking. It just gets me in trouble.
News to me that you'd started, Andy. Anyway, what if we'd said yes?
You think she's looking for a promotion?
Hey, you! You're playing with fire, Andy!
Let's lay low a bit. OK, Paul?
Oh, those COs and their wacky antics.
So yeah, this is our first mission where there are specific units that we have to protect (there are, I believe, three of them). Here it's game over if either of our landers goes down. Of course, landers are often mission-critical anyway, so it's not that different from the norm. Speaking of the norm, we do still have to win this mission conventionally - I'm thinking an HQ capture, given it's a) Sami, b) fog of war and c) that HQ's looking pretty exposed.
Keeping the landers safe isn't that hard. Drake has two battleships and a submarine coming in from the east, and the beaches right next to his HQ are guarded by a rocket launcher and an artillery. But in the west, all he has is a cruiser - and cruisers and landers can co-exist fairly peacefully (at least, before AWDS). So we'll mostly be approaching from that direction. Now, on my first few tries at this mission, what kept happening was that I'd try sneaking up on Drake through the forests around about where the words "HANG BACK" are on the map - and then he'd use AI "knowing stuff is there even if you can't see it" powers to spot the units, at which point they became fodder for his medium tank and rocket launcher. This time, though, I'm going to hang back a bit more, outside of rocket launcher range, and wait unit I've got enough troops landed before I take on those rockets.
Anyway, here goes. First up, I dive my sub and send it into scouting mode. Well, there's that cruiser I talked about. It's not a threat to anything other than my sub, but it's handy to keep an eye on it just to avoid it ambushing my landers (which was another reason I kept screwing up previous runs on this mission).
Battleship moves into a reef, cruiser heads towards where the sub's going to come from.
Sticking the medium tank and one of the light tanks into a lander, and dropping them on the peninsula. Sami's transport movement boost at work again, here.
Loading the other lander with the other light tank and a mech, and sending it northwest.
And the rest of my units just shuffle about a bit.
All I've got to do to win is to send those landers to the bottom of the sea. That'll keep 'em from comin' ashore! Up and at 'em, mateys!
Aye aye, Cap'n!
Hmm, the design of the Matey bubble bath bottle's changed quite a bit from when I was a kid.
Diving sub alert!
We can't worry about that sub just yet, though.
After all, we've got ground troops trying to establish a beach-head here. Everyone finds a forest to hide in.
And although we know where the sub is, there's no massive benefit to finding its location just yet. My own sub can't get close enough to spot it, and I'm not risking my battleship just on spotting duty. So the battleship and cruiser are going to hide in the reefs for now.
Of course, a question that had me worried for a while was: are my all-important landers going to be safe?
Answer: yes, just about. Drake even surfaced his sub, rather obligingly. The AI tends to do this with dived subs that aren't attacking anything - I guess to conserve fuel? Either way, it does tend to turn them into sitting targets.
My battleship takes its opportunity to go against the rock-paper-scissors triangle, and my cruiser finishes the job.
That's one of the threats to the landers removed.
As for Drake's battleship, a combination of rockets and torpedos leave it on just 1HP.
Although I'm worried about what that cruiser's going to do to my sub if it gets the chance.
So let's block it in with a lander. It means I can't drop the troops off, but if I'm right then Drake should already have Tsunami (20,000G + 0.9*28,000G > 40,000G), so this is a good time to follow Nell's advice and keep units in the landers. This is often the thing with COs with "longer" power bars: the units they work with are often more expensive anyway (Drake's ships, Eagle's planes, Kanbei's everything) so their power bars fill rapidly. Sami, in contrast, does a lot of work with cheaper units, so her bargain basement 25,000G pricetag for her CO Power suddenly looks harder to get.
But speaking of Nell's advice, let's actually withdraw the tank and mech we put down here for the moment. That extra hit point may well come in handy.
Well, I guess I was kind of thinking about it... this is one of the more puzzling pre-CO Power lines, though. Not quite sure what Drake's on about here.
Yeah, that 1HP battleship isn't going to achieve much, Tsunami or no. It is a lander he's attacking, but we can cope with a few paint scratches.
Fairly quite turn other than that. That's okay, quiet is good. Note Drake's cruiser rather straining at the leash to get at my sub, though.
Anyway, let's finish this battleship off with the ground forces.
That gives my sub and battleship the opportunity to scout ahead and set up some fire support for my invasion forces. Incidentally, there's a battleship in the highlighted reef, but you know what? Let's leave well enough alone. It's on the wrong side of the map to threaten my ground forces, and attacking it just fills up Drake's power meter. I'm starting to learn my lesson when it comes to that .
Let's land everybody. Hidden safely within the landers, they avoided taking damage from the Tsunami.
Preparing the rest of my ground troops to board the next lander.
Here come the spotters - an infantry and, bizarrely, an artillery (the AI isn't fussy about what it uses to spot you with). Fortunately, we're safely out of rocket range for now.
Still, can't leave these spotters lying around.
Medium tank finishes the job that the battleship started.
And as for the arty, well that goes down pretty easily too.
I really should be using Sami's mechs for first attack more often. Look at the damage I'd be outputting here. Seems a waste to use it just to knock off the last 4HP.
Oh well, it gets the job done.
Landers head back to pick up yet more ground troops. Going for the rockets and remaining mech this time.
Light tank from nowhere comes along going "WHAT LUCK! AN APC!" Wasn't even trying for . I'd better keep the APC out of harm's way for the rest of the mission.
But that's not the worst of it. Hello there, Mr. Medium Tank.
Better try and do some damage to these tanks. Although that's proving tricky with the defence bonus of these cities.
Still, it's a start. Not much else I can do to the medium tank right now, which is a shame because it'll be back to 9HP next turn. I could have tried attacking with my own middie, but after so many failed attempts at this mission I'm really paranoid about entering into rocket range.
So instead let's focus on the light tank.
Well, it's down to 1HP now. And I can move my damaged APC into a forest, so it's safe for now. But can I finish that light tank off...?
Yes. Good ol' Sami infantry.
Dropping off the rocket launcher for good measure. The mech'll have to wait.
My northern task force moves up a bit.
And you've probably noticed that the orange submarine needs fuel badly. Let's bring it to the coast so we can resupply it next turn - and once more, block in Drake's cruiser with landers.
Yeah, that's nasty.
But it does leave the medium tank nicely in range of my indirects (also, Double Time's ready. I'm going to save it up for a bit, though).
Down you go.
That's one of the units that's terrorised me on previous attempts at this mission out of the way.
My own medium tank advances, and so does my APC, heading into a forest to refuel the sub (... AW logic. Just go with it).
Refuelled and re-energised, the sub heads off on an adventure. And the northern taskforce sneaks over the river.
Let's have the other mech join them. I also start capturing a city (may as well, I could use some healing) and retreat my 2HP tank back to a forest.
Picking up the final unit (a recon) from our starting island.
Fairly quiet from Drake, other than him sending a mech into the river.
Time to shake things up a bit.
I do not want to have to deal with your nonsense this time, Mr. Rocket Launcher (tank spotted it, mech moving in for the...
... kill). Looks like it was worth this unit avoiding Tsunami in a lander after all.
Saying that, Drake's got another one charged from the look of it. Oh well, nothing we can do about that.
So let's assault this mech in the river. 75% damage, huh, pretty good that.
Yep. And we can finish capturing that city, too.
Sundry miscellaneous troop movements.
But glabargles aside, that was another quiet turn from Drake.
Medium tank and APC hide in woods, while my 9HP light tank heads forwards and reveals an artillery. Let me tell you about this artillery. On previous runs I've bashed my way through that medium tank and that rocket launcher, my army getting steadily more messed up and depleted, until finally I plonk a footsoldier on the HQ. Which then gets promptly shelled by this artillery.
Not this time, though.
Mech's within range of starting HQ capture next turn. Hopefully (and I go to the bother of capturing that city but never think to actually try healing something on it. Oh well).
Let's finish off this mech in the west.
Move the recon lander and rocket launcher up and...
... Drake just always seems to have one more tank up his sleeve, doesn't he?
Could be worse, the tank could have gone for my mech or something.
Anyway, let's get on. Battleship finishes off arty...
... and medium tank rolls in to punish Drake's latest tank.
4HP light tank also chips in to knock that tank down to 1HP.
And then I join the tanks. May as well.
Let's start capturing the HQ (once again, situations like this is where Sami's capture bonus really starts to come in handy).
Everything else moves up.
Drake tries to retreat his damaged tank...
... but that's not going to achieve much.
Taking out that lander because hey, why not, it's the last turn.
All right, we've had our fun.
Time to finish this.
looks like he took my advice to heart!
what do you mean "this isn't real"?
After all that, an S-Rank. Funny thing, that, given how much trouble the mission gave me. I guess practice makes perfect. Well, not quite perfect, I was a little on the slow side for that. But I'd rather be slow than not finish at all. Up to Opal Hen on this save, now.
So yeah, Sami's now also up to Wings of Victory!, the mission where we face Eagle for the third time. Incidentally, Sami and Andy play on the same map in Wings of Victory, but with a couple of differences - Sami's version is in Fog of War, and Eagle has more units there too. Ideally I'd like to play the Andy version before the Sami version, as it might come off as a bit of an anticlimax if we play it afterwards. But I'm going to leave it up to you guys. Andy, Max or Sami? (And, as before, first preference and second preference as well, please).