Part 6: New Missions, New Parts, Slightly New LookWe have now entered the second half of Armored Core, the part of the game where the missions we undertake will influence the war between the mega corporations. Dont be surprised if we still get missions from Chrome now and again. Helping Murakumo with that last mission just gave them an advantage in the war. Now, with the money weve been saving up over the last couple updates, I felt it was time to give the AC a nice little upgrade.
As you can see we have new, lighter arms equipped on us to reduce the number of leg weight points, which allows us to have additional weapons beside our trusty KARASAWA (the arms also boosted our AP even slightly higher, up to 9173). These weapons are the LS-3303, the second most powerful energy blade in the game, and the WC-01QL, a back mounted plasma cannon with 80 rounds and has an attack power on par with the KARASAWA. But these weapons and pair of arms arent the only things different about our AC, oh no. Weve now begun to include optional parts.
In keeping with our energy focused build, as well as what I had money left to spend on these parts, I have purchased the SP-SND-K and the SP-E+. The former increases our generators energy output, and the latter increases the power of our energy weapons. Note that we have a limited number of slots available for optional parts (12 for our core, as ones with higher AP tend to have fewer slots). But we will have enough room for the modules we need to boost our ACs performance slightly.
I dont think Ive shown this part of the garage before, but the performance menu gives an evaluation of your AC based on various factors which are shown in the image. The overall score is literally all the other scores added together, and what you get determines the grade. Until now we were just average but now we are above average. If you ask me, this system is kind of shitty, and the grade it gives wouldve been better replaced with a description of what category your AC falls into based on weight, leg type, weapon type, etc. This sort of performance review would remain mostly the same for quite a while, though it does get better in more recent entries in the series.
Anyway, weve got the upgrades we can get for our AC; lets go to the next mission, Guard Wharf Warehouse.
We want you to guard a new type of radar for ACs that we have developed.
A prototype model is new stored in a warehouse at the wharf, but for some reason the security system does not function at all.
There is a good chance that someone intentionally sabotaged the system. It is probably the work of Chrome agents.
You must protect the radar for your mission to succeed. We do not know the enemys target, but you must not let them steal or destroy the radar.
Do not let anyone near the warehouse until the system is restored. We are counting on you Raven.
Interesting enough, the part we have to protect is technically a hidden part that counts towards our completion percentage. It also means failing the mission if we take it for ourselves, fucking up our win/loss ratio. What do you think Im going to do?
Guard Wharf Warehouse
Yeah, were gonna be doing as the job says and get paid. Itd be kind of a dick move to do it at this point considering we just helped Murakumo with their attack on the Factory last mission.
The enemies come in three waves. The first wave consists of five Firebrands, second wave has two Firebrands and one Lightning, and the last wave has three Lightnings. Lightning MTs are actually quite a bit taller than an AC, but of course their firepower just doesnt compare to ours.
Interestingly enough, even though this is a mission where youre supposed to guard something, the enemies seem more interested in taking you out than the target youre protecting first. Oh well, Im not complaining, doesnt mean I have to worry as much about failing.
Hmm, par for the course at this point.
No time for any shopping or AC modification, lets start the next mission, Stop Gang Dark Soul.
The gang Dark Soul broke into our property at Heavensrock, stole several tanks and fled.
Since they stole tanks, we cannot leave them alone. Go and defeat them as soon as possible.
Judging from their direction of escape, they seem to be hiding in the Zahm Desert. In that area many mines remain, left from the war. Be very careful.
Note that your pay for this mission is not cash but AC parts.
Yep, another mission where parts are the reward instead of money. Still isnt anything we cant handle.
Stop Gang Dark Soul
A Barracuda drops us high above the battle zone, and while Im still always amused/slightly annoyed by it getting shot at every time, diving into battle dodging enemy fire is rather exhilarating.
You know whats great about land mines? Enemies will sometimes save you the trouble and blow themselves up out of stupidity.
And thats that. Simple, yet fun mission.
Anyway, the part we obtained for completing that mission was the SP-AXL, an optional part that increases the speed at which our weapons lock on to enemies. Its nice, but only really useful if your AC uses weapons with relatively slow lock on speeds like missiles. I sell the part for some extra money and buy the SP-EH, an optional part that increases the rate at which energy weapons fire. Given our AC load out, I dont think I need to explain why thats important.
Anyway, next mission on the agenda, Destroy Plus Escapee.
A subject from the Plus next-generation experiments has escaped from the lab.
We cannot divulge any details, but a certain experiment seems to have adversely affected the mind of the subject. An eye witness said that the subject is completely deranged.
An ex-Raven, he ran amuck with his AC in the city, mowed down a Guard detachment and ran away above ground. We found him in an abandoned skyscraper in the old city.
If we leave the situation as is, we dont know when he will start running amuck again. Go to the skyscraper now and destroy him and his AC.
We regret having to resort to such measures, but there is nothing we can do. The footing is very poor at the site, so if you enter into combat, be very careful not to fall.
When he escaped, he took a prototype AC part with him. You dont have to return the AC part. If you find it, its yours. We are counting on you.
This is the lowest paying mission in the entire game. But you can get a huge amount of money out of the hidden part in this mission, which Murakumo was kind enough to point out to us.
Destroy Plus Escapee
The hidden part in this mission is right below us on a ledge. Back off of the elevator at the start, and grab the part. Its very easy to spot.
Now, the briefing for the mission said this escapee was an ex-Raven piloting an AC. The former is true, but the latter isnt exactly correct. To be specific, it is a General Purpose Armored Core model called the Heat Wave. GP-ACs are designed as a sort of compromise between the easy to produce MTs and expensive to maintain ACs. Theyre definitely tougher than a regular MT, and can be pretty fast.
We defeat the escapee, but not before he gives us a final message that is incomprehensible. Even weirder is that the audio for it continues AFTER the GP-AC has exploded and killed the pilot. Odd.
A little over half of the promised reward due to expenses. But well be making A LOT more money quickly after selling a particular item.
But first, email!
For this reason, it almost certainly has some extremely unstable side effects. We cannot be sure that this kind of incident has not happened in the past.
Yes, I am referring to that man.
Ill be in touch.
Yep, its basically what we already described about Human PLUS in an EX Part. Nothing else really enlightening.
Now then, about that part we acquired.
The GBG-XR is the heaviest generator we got, but also has the highest maximum charge out of all generators in the game. Energy Output is nearly 2000 points less than our previous one, but as you can see we are still nowhere near that limit. Redzone is slightly higher by a few hundred points, but its still an acceptable threshold. Well be using this from here on out.
Since we have a new generator, I sell the previous one for a hefty sum, and use the money from that to buy two new optional parts, the SP-S/SCR and SP-E/SCR. The former reduces shell damage and the latter reduces energy damage to the AC. And this leaves us with three slots left, and well find a way to fill those up pretty soon.
Now, on to the next mission, Exterminate Organisms.
This is the Gal City Guard. Our city is now occupied by unknown giant organisms. I dont even know if organism is right, but Ive never seen anything like em before.
The things are extremely fierce and attack anything that moves. Our citizens have suffered many casualties from the animal horde. We have no way of fighting back.
A biological analysis of their behavior patterns shows a social structure much like that of ants or bees. There must be a queen somewhere that directs the swarm.
Investigators found an unfamiliar hole in a wall in the office district, so this might be the beasts nest.
Your mission is to find and destroy the queen. If you can take out the leader, the swarm will become disorganized and we can take it from there. We are counting on you.
Time to go on a bug hunt!
These bugs are unique in that you cant lock on to them unless you have a bio sensor equipped, which our HD-ONE already has covered.
This level has a lot of branching paths that lead to dead ends, though some of these lead to spawn points where the bugs come out of. The enemies will continually respawn, and because we get a credit bonus for each one killed, you can farm a lot of these fuckers and earn way more than you would doing the minimum objective.
Also, because of the amount of ammo at my disposal and with so many enemies, this is the first mission where my back mounted plasma cannon gets some use.
DIE! EAT PLASMA YOU LITTLE FUCKERS!! HAHAHAHAHA!!!! BURN! BUUURRRN!!!!
Ah, that felt good. Lets continue on.
We arrive at the room where the queen is, but before killing her, there is a hidden AC part along the edges of the room. Grab it first, then kill the queen and complete the mission.
Yep, lot of money made this time.
Because of this new development, youd probably expect there to be an email explaining whats going on. Well there is, courtesy of our good friend R.
You may already have noticed this yourself, but those things were in no way organisms. They are undeniably weapons that are disguised as organisms.
From the look of things, it appears that this outbreak was really a field exercise to test a new weapon.
Such large-scale testing could only have been done by Murakumo or Chrome, so one of the two must have been behind it.
Regardless of which it was, I feel that it will not be long before we see the confrontation between the two come to a head.
Ill be in touch.
So its one of the two mega corporations in this war that was responsible for releasing these organisms, huh
Ill let you all take a guess as to who was responsible.
Anyway, that wasnt the only message we got in our inbox.
Powerful large missiles fired singly. 46200 C
Linear gun for the shoulder. Burst-fire type weapon emphasizing firepower over number of shots. 41800 C
Energy weapon. Fires laser beams. 78700 C
Unfortunately, none of these parts are ones we will use. The energy weapon in particular is too heavy for us to equip at this point, even if its to replace the shoulder cannon we have now.
But we will go to the shop to sell the FCS we acquired in the last mission. I also buy the SP-ABS and repurchase the SP-AXL that I sold a few missions ago. With those two installed, now all my optional part slots are filled up.
Alright then, last mission for this part, Repulse Enemy Attack.
Recently, our transport blimps have been attacked one after another. We dont know what they want, but the blimp is always shot down so the target is probably not the payload.
Perhaps they are simply intending to interrupt our operations at someones instigation. We could provide full-scale escorts, but this risks marring our reputation.
These incidents have not gotten out to the public, so we want you to ride secretly in the blimp and repulse the attacking group.
Note that we expect the battle to be fought on the blimp, so be careful not to fall.
It doesnt say who is responsible, but its not hard to imagine Chrome is backing some punks or sending their own out to troll the shit out of Murakumos air transports. This is also one of the missions that is exclusive to the Murakumo path in the game.
Repulse Enemy Attack
This mission I ended up having more trouble with than I wouldve liked. The Welkins move pretty fast, and its at this moment that I feel like the size of my aim window is too small for my liking.
Damage does get done to the blimp over time, but youre pay doesnt get any deductions because of it. You just need to shoot all these bastards down in order to clear the mission.
Hmm, expenses arent too bad, but that mission still took longer than I wouldve preferred. Gotta do something about that FCS.
Thats it for today though. More missions and further minor modifications of our AC will continue next time.
Ill be in touch.