The Let's Play Archive

Armored Core 2: Another Age


Part 6: Sortie 6 - "Mines then mines"

Sortie 6 - "Mines then mines"

And we're back after a short end-of-the world hiatus. Joining us once again in this dystopia that now stretches beyond the digital, GOTTA STAY FAI, esquire. Join us as we lose the plot, figuratively and literally.

Pilot: T-Mania
AC: Armed Gorilla

-Surprisingly good close range firepower

-Lightweight core and head is a weird decision, doesn't take advantage of his immense leg weight capacity
-Goddamn energy slug arms

This guy is kind of a pushover. He has the beginnings of some good ideas in his build, but unfortunately he gets zoned out super easily by the most basic of things. He likes to fight at mid-long range with his slug gun arms, which in theory is nice to guarantee a hit because of the spread, but unfortunately they just don't put out enough damage with small single hits to do any real damage before their limited ammo supplies run out.

That said, if he threw on some extra ammo, bulked up his core and head to give him some more AP, he could be a real shitwrecker in confined spaces, given that his anti-missile system counteracts his huge cross-section for missile swarms. Probably wouldn't hurt to dump the missiles on his back for something with more ammo like a pulse cannon or something for focused big damage like a grenade launcher.

So he sucks, but the core idea can work.

So given that I just put up a big tirade about how a better core could make the previous build work, let's take some time and talk about cores a bit.

That's it, that's all the cores the game has to offer. One of each weight class from each major manufacturer. So let's start with our unique stats:

Maximum weight: This is how much weight the arm sockets can handle before the weight is too much and they just rip right out. This is a factor for things like the weight of the arms themselves, the left/right hand weapons, and any extensions you happen to have on. And Inside parts in later games. No, don't ask why you can have a giant bazooka in the right hand but not being able to put a teensy laser blade on the left. Just because, okay?

VS MG Response/Range: This is the baked-in missile defense system of the core. The response is the probability of it activating, and the range is from how far away the system will activate. Zio cores do not have this function at all, but usually have other improvements to make up for it. So if you ever see a small laser beam shoot out from your core towards a missile, that's what it's supposed to be, hence the little gun on the front of the core.

Option Slots: This is how many slots the core has for slotting in Option parts that increase aspects of your core like giving you extra generator capacity or improving your turning speed. Generally, Zio cores have more option slots, and the lighter the core is, the more slots you'll have access to.

OB Power/Energy Drain/Discharge Heat: These are your overboost stats. Power and energy drain are obvious, bigger numbers = more drain/thrust, but discharge heat is a new thing for Another Age. Now, whenever you pop OB, you heat up a bit, and the larger the value, the more you'll heat up, because it turns out having a gigantic set of thrusters half the size of the part bolted on can make things get pretty hot, who would've thought?

And OB Limit... I was all set to say "Nobody knows" since that's what I've always thought, but hey, now I've got magical future powers of recording and editing, I thought I'd test some stuff. And the results are pretty drastic. The two cores I tested are the ECL-ONE and the ZCH-GR/1, which have the lowest and highest OB Limits, respectively. And not only does OB limit determine the length of the Limiter Release state, but also it determines the length of the OB Down state too, with a higher OB Limit taking longer to recover from the downtime. Now of course other factors affect OB Down state like System Recovery for heads, but that's a pretty stark difference assuming otherwise identical stats.

Kind of sucks then that my preferred control setup can't actually pop Limiter Release then, huh? Still, if yours doesn't, it's definitely something to keep in mind, and learn the time limits of so you're not left a sitting duck when the time comes.

Overall though, core choice is incredibly important to any build, and a bad pick can make or break a build. For me, personally, my choice of a mobility focused AC with high option part usage naturally inclines me towards the ZCL-XA/2, with high defense and cooling ratings for a light core and tons of option slots. I don't tend to value VS MG stats highly because of the rather random and unpredictable nature of the system, and prefer physical anti-missile extensions, but it can sometimes be a lifesaver if you're lucky.

First and foremost though, if you're taking a core out, make sure it jives with your loadout. There are circumstance where slapping a light core on a tank or heavy core on a lightweight pair of legs might work for a gimmick or specific objective, but chances are you could use the weight better.