The Let's Play Archive

Battlezone 98 Redux + The Red Odyssey

by Lunethex, Coolguye, TheLastRoboKy, Jade Star

Part 9: Black Dog #2 - A World of Hurt

The Black Dogs are able to regroup and take steps to fight back against the Chinese aggressors. The Lieutenant is dispatched to initially help with a bombing raid, but the discovery of a strange Portal has him reassigned to infiltrating the base and scanning it. Before he's made by the Chinese, he hijacks a Tug and steals an alien relic, making a great escape.

With the Chinese in disarray after having lost their Recycler, the Black Dogs assault their position in the hills where the 4th Platoon was lost. Again, the Chinese retreat and seal the portal from this side, but having been ready for it, the Black Dogs are then able to discover the hub of this portal network and make plans to assault and capture it.

Once the diversionary assault begins, the Lieutenant leads a full squadron of Red Devil units and fights off a massive Chinese offensive and they are able to reprogram the portal and take it for themselves. What lay on the other side is a planet known as Elysium...

BD-04 Wolf in Sheep''s Clothing The Black Dog Way
Preparing for a bombing raid on a Chinese base, you are instead reassigned to investigate the portal the Chinese are using. You start off by grabbing a scavenger and slowly making your way around the map or doing what I did . In theory it's possible to just jump into the base and inspect the portal, take the tug, and move on as normal and forgetting the Scavengers but you will be targeted instantly by the turrets and you will either die or take a lot of needless damage, best to grab the scavenger first, because as long as you're in that they don't shoot straight away and you'll be able to weather some hits. The escape is something that needs to be prepared for. I tried a couple times to not snipe people but the sheer amount of Mongoose Fighters dropping on my escort of only 3 Scouts and 3 Tanks was causing serious problems, even with the increased Tug HP and the initial Mongoose waves only having 1 gun. You still have to worry about the ammo on your own troops. If they gave you at least two extra units it'd remove the luck involved in a scenario where you don't snipe them. All told a fantastic mission with the best music in the game.

BD-05 Chink in the Armor/Achilles' Heel Ok this isn't so bad I'm glad we got past Spilt Milk this game should be easy from here
This mission, by all accounts, by all its text and briefings, wants you to attack the Chinese base, but that is at the lowest rung of your priorities. This mission will end after 20 minutes of game time and you have to defend your force from six incursions. There is no other place to set up your base either, so take advantage of how defensible it is and rush gun towers. It's an easy but drug out mission and one we've seen plenty of times in the usual base building fashion. If you are feeling particularly brave, you can try to prepare for a last minute assault after the Walker goes down, but usually I waste all my resources on gun towers to game the AI and make damn sure nobody gets to my Recycler. I am not having a repeat of Venus let's get that right

So far the pattern is that every third mission is of a bunch is the worst. The next update will break that, but it'll be a coincidence. Ahhh Blitzkrieg, where to begin? It's fun to go all Red October, WOLVERINES!! on the base, but you will take a lot of damage for it. I'm pretty sure you get some reinforcements but maybe only once and maybe only for what you lose, I can't be too sure, so I made a point to take it as methodically as possible. As I said in the mission, this Blitzkrieg is not the Black Dog's, it's the CRA's. It will never come across in a video but this is a stressful, tense mission, and I think it's a result of the portal randomly spewing out squadrons in your flank, and you don't get any notification of it until they've landed and start shooting, unless of course you were looking at it. I don't remember exactly how many waves you have to last before reinforcements show up, but I feel it was around 6 or 7 of increasingly dangerous odds. It's in the next update that I make the comparison between this game and the Myth series, but I want to raise that point regardless: we are seriously outmatched and we have limited resources to make do with. Only when you're at the top of the game can it feel like this is really balanced for that. Remember, I'm playing on Very Hard so it's all the more dangerous for it! I can easily recommend staying on the hill that you arrive from, it gives you a huge advantage and guarantees that everyone will target you first allowing the team to wipe them out.

The Red Devils you start with are tuned to have more ammo and armor than a regular grizzly. Unfortunately, their loadout of SP-Stabbers and Hornets does not last or I'd have a reason to build them. At 6 scrap that kind of unit would have been OP as all hell I guess! Combined with their speed they are probably the best unit in the game for this one mission, so keeping them all alive is vital. Even when the Recycler arrives, your mission gets bloodier to which I say just rush the Factory, get an APC to the portal, and you can just let everything die. As long as the APC gets there, you've won the mission, so if you're playing along at home there's your strategy. But I love the Black Dogs and I hate seeing them die so I couldn't do that.

The Campaign hasn't even begun to fight, and we've yet to see the Chinese missions. I can promise you after the next update is when the gloves come off.