Part 39: Campaign Mission 17A: Wings of Victory! as AndyMission 17A: Wings of Victory! as Andy (or "Catharsis")
So yeah, that last mission went pretty badly. Can we perk things up?
"Okay, I smashed his army to bits last time, but I still have no idea how he got that missile launcher out of there."
Doesn't this old sea dog deserve some smooth sailing now and then?
Drake! Listen... About our earlier conversation...
Ahoy there, Eagle. It's time for you to test the waters. Battle Orange Star yourself and see if my theory holds any water.
Too many water idioms in one line of dialogue for me, there (yes, two is too many).
I think you're right.
Right? About what? That Andy isn't responsible for this mysterious... thing? That you should fight him again? Oh whatever.
Come on, Andy. Let's take our frustrations out on the flyboy.
Eagle and his lucky goggles await.
Er... no it won't, Andy. Sami faced him last time, remember? (On all three timelines, too).
It's about time to wrap him up for good.
I'm gonna get him and make him tell me why he's been chasing me!
I must be dreaming! Andy! Are you getting serious on us?
Are you feeling OK, pal? You comin' down with something?
Nothing to add here. Sami and Max's reactions are just brilliant.
Gimme a break, guys! I don't think you understand what it means to be me.
I don't think anyone does, Andy.
Well, after some rather weird and often awkward missions against Drake, we're back to a straightforward Rout/HQ Capture battle for Eagle - and it's nice to be out of the fog, too. Maybe we can get some catharsis here? Eagle's got a few more tanks and bombers than us, but other than that we're fairly balanced. Looking at this map, it's important to note which units are set to defensive AI (the ones with a little shield that will only move if they can attack) and which are set to normal. Pretty much all the units near Eagle's HQ will come charging at us, leaving the HQ area nicely exposed. The only thing left behind to guard it will be that bomber in the southeast corner.
So, strategy: first we need to use our fighters, missiles and AA to deal with Eagle's fighters, and then once we've achieved air superiority we can deal with that bomber and go in for the HQ capture. Meanwhile our bombers and ground forces can engage Eagle's ground forces in the big foresty area in the middle of the map. Random thought: I kinda hope that our missile launcher is the one we saved in Andy's last mission. It would actually make sense if we were trying to preserve it for this battle.
Okay, let's get to work. First let's load up the T copter and, sure why not, capture some cities. I might need to heal on them later.
My various anti-air measures head upfield...
... followed by the units that are vulnerable to Eagle's fighters.
And then the group troops fall in behind them.
That's some pretty long words there, Eagle. Mind you, I'm one to talk.
Andy! I'm coming for you!
Okay, there's Eagle's planes.
Well, that's taken a good chunk out of his fighters.
Although I only notice in hindsight that my AA's now threatened by his bombers. Will I be able to block them if I attack with my other fighter from here?
Will I 'eck as like.
Moving the missile launcher and T copter up a bit. Yes, I left my T copter somewhere where Eagle's fighter could attack it and then park inside the missile launcher's range shadow. I guess I was distracted by the bombers. It doesn't cost me anything in the long run because the damaged fighter won't be able to one-shot the T copter, but it was a bit dumb.
Meanwhile, may as well smash this light tank up with my own bomber.
Don't worry, I can do a bit more damage before Lightning Strike activates.
My ground troops move up, keeping out of bomber range.
Okay, that'll do. What's Eagle got in store for us?
Yeah, there's the fighter attacking my T copter. A bit annoying, but as I say, the T copter survives.
Same can't be said about the AA though .
Ah well. It played its part. And I shouldn't lose any more units this mission.
As I suspected, the fighter's ended up inside my missile launcher's range shadow. The bombers, however...
Boom. The tiny bit of counterattack damage that my 1HP AA did here helped, as it meant that my missile's 90% expected damage was enough to finish this bomber off.
Can't hit Eagle's fighter with my missiles, so I'd better send in one of my own fighters instead. Could have used my full-health fighter instead of the 8HP one, but I decided to save it for the other bomber.
Those attacks charged Hyper Repair. Don't think I'll use it just yet, though.
Let's just check something. With the damage I just did, I'm pretty sure we're going to get struck by lightning next turn. How far can this AA move with two consecutive turns? Well, this is as far as it can get with one turn. And I estimate that it can't even reach the square with the 2HP tank in it on the second turn.
Which means my remaining air units can keep on wreaking havoc. Good to know.
Other than that one southwestern bomber, Eagle's air force is pretty much done for. Good luck with the Lightning Strike, pal.
Surrounding my damaged T copter to protect it from the fighter (hey, not going to risk it getting ridiculously lucky and killing my ticket out of here). The APC can take a bit of from the bomber, though.
All right. Do your worst, Eagle.
Wow, that's some "worst".
Talk about delusional.
This is a good screenshot for pointing out that while Lightning Strike revives all of Eagle's non-footsoldier units, it does nothing for his infantry and mechs. I guess it would be pretty cheesy if you could use it to capture stuff faster (after all, that's Sami's department).
I guess at least he chipped two hit points off my B copter this time?
So no real damage done then. Still, we've got a few units looking a bit worse for wear.
Luckily we've got just the CO to cope with that.
There we are.
Hyper Repair attack bonus plus Lightning Strike defence penalty equals a lot of overkill on this poor 1HP bomber.
The many anguished faces of Eagle.
Where the attack bonus/defence penalty really come in handy though is in getting this AA out of the way in one shot. Take that out and I rule the skies unopposed.
And the B copter flies in to finish off that 3HP light tank. Four units down in one turn, that's more than enough to satisfy the Power score.
And we can start preparing for the endgame by moving a fighter and the T copter towards Eagle's HQ.
Aaand moving everything else up. Better stay out of range of the arty for now, though.
Not much Eagle could do that turn except move his tanks up a bit.
Now then, this bomber... looks like that forest square northwest of the HQ is a good place to land.
So let's drop off the mech there. Meanwhile, my fighter heads down so it can give that bomber what-for next turn.
With that out of the way, let's get to work. First my rocket launcher and bomber take on the tanks.
So far so good. We're going to need to finish that medium tank off, though, and I don't like the look of that artillery either...
B copter takes out the medium tank, and my recon starts chipping away at the arty.
Although in hindsight I should really have just used my medium tank to assault the artillery. It would have taken off more hit points, and that recon's now looking a little vulnerable to mechs...
Oh well, let's press on. Tank finishes off tank, and the middie rolls in and does the job it should have done in the first place - taking care of that arty.
But yeah, that recon is looking more and more awkward. Is there any way to save it?
Well, we can block one mech with our other fighter and bait the other with a bit of the ol' (hey, it's in a forest at least!). And the rest of the units move up as well.
Right then. The endgame.
First we've got to take care of this bomber.
Hmm. The HQ's still in the bomber's range. It would be annoying if it knocked our mech down to 9HP and cost us a turn.
There we go. Fighter and T copter keep our mech safe and sound.
Okay, let's clean up these footsoldiers (also random thing to note: Eagle's mech didn't attack my APC. Weird). We want to keep out of range of that rocket launcher, though (I could have just attacked the rocket launcher with my bomber. But I was a little worried about Eagle getting off a second Lightning Strike for some reason).
Bomber and B copter smash up an infantry unit.
Recon and infantry take down a mech.
An Arrow-O-Vision version of events.
And I take down the other mech with my medium tank and my own mech.
Can't attack the final infantry without risking the wratch of that rocket launcher though. Sorry.
But I may as well continue with the formality of moving everything forward.
Time for the traditional bit of last-turn fun before the HQ capture.
Fighter finishes bomber...
... and bomber and B copter remove the rocket.
All right, now I can take on that infantry unit without worries. All Eagle's going to have left after we're done here is a solitary light tank.
Down goes the infantry.
And down goes the HQ. Catharsis indeed.
Don't play the fool with me, whelp! Do you expect me to forget what you did to Green Earth?
I think Andy expects everyone to forget everything. It's what he does, after all.
The look on your face during the assault... I'll never forget! Never!
Which one of , , , or are you referring to, Eagle?
No! You're wrong! It wasn't me!
What do you take me for, boy? I saw your face!
I'm telling you, it wasn't me! Why would I be out attacking other countries? Why?
Erm, Andy, that's kind of what we're doing right now. Mostly in revenge/self defence, but still.
Hmm... Very well. I'll take you at your word... for the moment. There are Drake's thoughts to consider, as well.
One of these days we're going to get all this crap explained to us. Hope it comes soon.
But don't believe for a moment that I trust you. If I find out you're lying to me, you'll curse the day you were born!
Big words for a guy who just got his backside handed to him.
Anyway, that went really well - perfect S-Rank. I think I needed something like this after the Naval Clash! debacle. Speaking of navies...
... well, he's not one to hold grudges, I'll give him that. But at least in Andy's final Green Earth mission the tables are turned - it's our turn to hunt down one of Drake's units.
But of course, that's just one of three options open to us. We've also got the Max and Sami versions of Wings of Victory! to play through as well. So once again: Andy, Max or Sami? And first preference and second preference.