Part 4: Project Phantasma - Chapter 4: VIP (Arena Ranks #29 - 20)Gonna get started with the next set of missions for this update, this focusing on capturing and protecting a specific target.
We have been informed that a high ranking official will be visiting
the Doomsday Organization weapon test facility in SE Amber Crown. Run
interference and capture him.
The weapon testing area is secured with both anti-aerial radar and
anti-tank land mines. Beware of these deterrents - they can prematurely
end the mission.
We will divide into two groups. You should head north from the
riverside, cross two bridges, then head west.
When the battle begins, choppers will not be able to approach the
testing plant. Ignore the enemies and keep going.
Yep, first ever sneaking mission in an Armored Core game. Not that hard though when you follow the briefing closely.
Just a recap of the briefing, and clarification that we can't use our boosters at the start, got it.
...Tells us not to use boosters, proceeds to use them herself. Surely she knows what she's doing :V
Following the instructions from the briefing, following the river is the path we need to take until we reach the second bridge. And even though Sumika clear did the opposite of what she told us to do, I'm gonna do this first part the way From probably intended and that is fucking walk there.
Neat thing about this level at the start is that the skybox slowly lights up as you proceed. Fits with the time of day pretty well, and it also helps to not be wandering in near total darkness.
When you reach the second bridge, there are tanks stationed on both ends of it, one on the right and two on the left. Blowing these up won't affect the sneaking part of the mission, so we'll deal with them now.
Those are the only three tanks you'll face, and now all there is is to head down this path west to the destination.
Although there are two helicopters flying around that spot you at this point, and I shoot them through the trees. Our position still isn't given away for whatever reason, but I'm not complaining.
A bit more walking later...
We reach the destination...
And now we wait...
Ladies and gentleman, there you have it, the first human NPC to be ever modeled in an Armored Core game in engine, and it'll stay like that all the way until Last Raven when ground infantry are introduced in missions.
Now, commence attack!
Only three enemies are guarding the building, called Javelins, and they're simple reverse joint MTs that are as easy to take down as their predecessors in the first Armored Core. The helicopter is also a target, so that the VIP can't leave.
I did NOT mean to blow up that building in the process. At least the target wasn't in there, and it should convince him otherwise to cooperate.
And that wraps it up.
"You saw that building I blew up? Consider that example."
Easy work for a sneaking mission, and good outcome on the pay as well.
Got a new message in our inbox, and it's a lengthy one, but not anything we couldn't already assume.
After interrogating a captured
prisoner, we have extracted the
- A large conglomerate has
funds to establish the
- Another large company is
working with the Doomsday
Organization secretly on
the "Phantasma Project".
In order to interrogate the prisoner
further, we will take him to a safe
house in Amber Crown.
Yep, various other organizations and companies have pitched into Project Phantasma, though that's as far as it goes in assuming who those other parties might have been. Only thing that matters is taking down the Doomsday Organization and not a potentially bigger problem beyond them.
Oh well, let's start the next mission.
We have decided to transfer our prisoner to an abandoned factory
located in the slums of Amber Crown.
The Doomsday Organization is also seriously investigating this matter,
so we would like you to guard the prisoner on the way to the factory.
I don't know what else could've been extracted from the prisoner before moving here, but we'll just take her word in it.
I feel like "Slaugher House" isn't the most appropriate code name for this type of mission. Unless we're the ones expected to be slaughtered...
As to be expected.
Fireflies are one of two enemy types we're dealing with this mission, and I don't need to explain again the strategy and/or how annoying they can be.
The second type, however, is entirely new. The Eagails are quad leg MTs with multiple weapons to use at various ranges. It's design and weapon load out is very similar to what can be achieved with AC parts, but unlike actual ACs, the AI for this can't keep up and is destroyed easily.
Most of the Eagails come from these shafts in the upper walls, and since their aim is obstructed when below the shafts, it's easy to pop up, take a few shots, and get out of the way without taking too much damage.
I also ended up staying airborne for a considerable amount of time this mission as a result.
Eh, doubt it's over yet, I still have control of the machine so there's gotta be something left, right?
Right on cue!
Such a heated exchange of words.
And now it's round two with Stinger, this time with Sumika there to assist/take most of damage. Works for me!
Oh yeah, and that vehicle with the VIP in it? No one really goes after it, not even Stinger. Not much of a protection mission if there ain't a risk to it.
After kicking his ass a second time, Stinger leaves the way he came.
And Sumika is now stuck in midair for some reason.
Another successful outcome on the pay.
Sumika's got some more words for us.
Good job! After obtaining more
detailed information from our
prisoner, we have decided that
an attack on the Doomsday
Organization's main headquarters
I believe that Stinger will
make a move sometime in the
near future. When it happens,
Could've already guessed that would eventually be the course of action. Fine by me.
That's it for today's missions, now back to the Arena!
Arena Ranks #29 - 20
For this next set of Arena fights, I decided I would experiment with different leg types, since I primarily have used normal legs. I ended up buying several parts from the shop before hand, some of which didn't get used in this set though, and a few of those parts were one of each leg type. To start, we'll go with tank treads, as this allows us to use one of the heavier generators in the game, the GBX-XL. It ways a bit less than the GBX-TL, has a smaller redzone, and the highest maximum charge of any generator. However, the weight is still an issue that prevents it from being used in most builds, so I figured a tank AC would be a good place to show it off due to the treads having much higher weight capacity. Also swapped out the arms and went back to the core I used in AC1 to increase my AP even further, and I slapped on the WX-S800-GF Dual Missile launcher that I had been holding onto since finding that part during a mission in AC1. It fires six missiles at once per lock on, so it has a similar effect to the multi missile launcher from last update. Except less ammo to use it for.
Reward: 33000 C
This is possibly the fastest time I've beaten someone in the arena, and for this guy I'm certainly lucky he did most of the damage to himself from the mines. As a weapon arm user, the AW-MG25/2 has relatively low attack power, but it's the rapid fire of the shots that makes it devastating. So yeah, I'll take it.
Reward: 34000 C
This guy's almost identical to Jester in build and tactics. Normal leg AC with machine gun weapon arms and he keeps a good track on the player most of the time. Note that missiles in low ceiling arenas like the cavern are NOT a good idea, but I somehow manage to bullshit my way through it to make it work. Half of the missiles fired blew up in the ceiling, but at least the other half were able to track. But again, never a smart setup.
Reward: 36000 C
This guy's a tank tread AC, so maneuverability isn't a concern with this guy. Heavy firepower, however, is one as he has the AW-RF120 dual arm cannons and the WC-GN230 grenade launcher equipped on his AC. This was probably the one tank battle I had the most fun with out of the three because of the slow pace and trying to get the drop on each other.
Next set of legs to try out are the reverse joint type. They're quite similar to normal legs as it's bipedal, but the reverse joint legs have an easier time jumping. However, they cannot hold as much weight compared to normal legs, and are meant for more light/middle weight builds. Also decided to switch back to the KARASAWA for old times sake on these next few fights, and with the ammo magazine attached to the back it gives me more than enough ammo to deal with enemies.
Reward: 38000 C
This guy follows a pattern of jumping very high all over the place, so getting a reliable hit on him is to fire just as he lands. That said, there's nothing particularly challenging with this AC. He has the exact same arm weapons as Darwin, but since we're not using treads it's considerably easier to dodge their fire.
Reward: 40000 C
Special Part: WG-PB26
Same deal, jumps around a lot, fire at him upon landing. Difference is that he has the WG-XP2000 pulse rifle instead of weapon arms, so while his shots aren't all that powerful, he fires it off a lot. His cannon and rocket back weapons aren't used quite as often.
Just another update on our standing in the arena. To think we're only halfway through.
Reward: 41000 C
This AC's pretty heavy, but regardless he floats around quite a bit early on before settling down later. None of his weapons deal a significant amount of damage alone, the missiles being very easy to dodge or intercept with a core's anti missile system. Just continuing to fire KARASAWA shots at him chews through his armor quickly.
I got my fill for both tank treads and reverse joint legs, so we'll wrap up the last four fights this update with quad legs. Interesting thing with the quads compared to later installments is that the legs don't all move individually. In fact, the AC just glides around everywhere on them, making them almost like faster alternatives to the tank treads. The speed they move at on average is about double the normal speed of regular legs. However, activating the boosters will automatically make the AC go airborne. Just the basic things to keep in mind with them.
Also, that part that we earned after rank #25, the WG-PB26, is a handheld grenade launcher. In the first game there was the back mounted grenade launcher with its distinctive design, but here that fire power is available as an arm weapon. Compared to everything else we can get in Project Phantasma, this grenade launcher has the highest attack power in a single hit at 2200 points. Of course, the low ammo count is meant to counteract this, but that's why we've equipped two M118-TDs to double the amount of grenades we can fire. Still takes a steady aim to make good use of, and I intend to make the best of it for your entertainment.
Reward: 42000 C
A reverse jointed AC that REALLY likes to hop and boost around, making my current set up with the grenade launcher very difficult. Although because of how often he moves he doesn't get much opportunities to use his back mounted slug gun. With a player AC build like this where you have limited but powerful shots, patience and constant movement are important so you don't waste too much ammo. Not much of a problem this time, but later on I start cutting it quite close.
Reward: 44000 C
This guy was a lot harder to hit than Fire Crest was, mostly because he didn't jump around a whole lot and the quad legs give him enough speed to evade most of my shots. Here, getting above the enemy AC or having it cornered guarantees a better shot, like when it fell into the little ravine on the map.
Reward: 46000 C
This guy just boosts around all over the place, but there are still opportunities to get some shots on it, especially if tries to use its chain gun since it needs to remain stationary when firing. I still cut it close in this one, coming out with only 2 shots remaining in my grenade launcher.
Reward: 47000 C
This guy is not only a Human PLUS, but also has an AC that exceeds the weight restrictions of its parts. Yes, it goes into battle overweight, is not affected by it, and is a goddamn pain in the ass. It took me three times before I could beat him, and part of the strategy came down to firing the grenades at point blank. The cave stage helped with the fact that it flies around a lot so I can still keep the AC within my FCS' view window. Near the end when he's just walking, he almost always sidestepped my grenade shots the moment I fired them, so it's much harder to land a shot on him.
60% through now, but the worst is still yet to come...next update.