Part 110: China, Part 1
Okay let's try this off-site screenshot posting thing so our browsers don't crash.
From the Diary of General Fedorov - Commander of the Mobile Commandos posted:
September 28th 2150,
I never would've thought the ED had stolen UCS stealth technology. This is a troubling finding. And the UCS seeming to ignore the General Command is even more disturbing. What is happening?
Of course these questions are of no matter to me right now. Due to the events at the dam, the GC have moved units in to continue the investigation. While they're en route there will be a brief window where the rocket launching pads in China will be at less than full strength. We must strike now! We may not get another opportunity. Our whole campaign comes down to this. Succeed, and we'll have secured our spots off Earth. Fail, and we're doomed to die here.
Briefing Video: video link
In this mission, unlike every other one I've shown before there's mandatory pre-work you need to complete or the mission will be over before you can blink. First thing you'll need to do is make a bunch of Han hR helicopters. I pick out 10 here because it's a nice round number and still allows me to send some Thors too.
Next, I get to work building a bunch of artillery units. If you notice we are absolutely swimming in cash right now. 148,037 credits is more than enough to switch production from Khrushchev units to Urals. We're going to need as much firepower as we can get to crack open the launching pads and Urals with artillery are just the ticket.
Our army is set and ready to go. I've pre-loaded the Ukraine with all our helicopters and 5,000 credits.
A scouting fly-by has identified our primary obstacle, the General Command's Bridge of Doom. It's heavily guarded and is the only real way into the base. There's another approach to the west but it's even more well guarded than this one.
Bad news folks, the General Command has noticed our approach and are actually preparing to launch! Our attack on the Dam didn't buy us nearly enough time. If we fail here there will be no second chance.
We've got 104 hours to clear out the enemy defenses. This seems like forever, but it's really not. We need to move at a lightning pace.
First off, I'm going to build the most insane defensive line you've ever seen, plus a landing zone. That's a wall of nothing but heavy towers and their required power plants. Yes, its not very efficient but trust me you're going to want a strong defense.
We also have our usual pre-built mine. There's no chance of us venturing out for other resources so this, and what we have back at the base, is all we're gonna get.
1 hour of mission time elapsed and I'm already calling in the transport.
An hour later and it shows up. I order it to unload and then send it back to grab a second wave. Grabbing a second wave is absurdly crucial.
I have a Han do some scouting and notice there's a more defensible position just west of our base. Damn. Well maybe I can try moving our defenses there to cut down on the costs.
And 8 hours into the mission the General Command attack with lots and lots and lots of Hans. This is why it's so crucial to bring your own air force over. At 8 hours of game time elapsed, it's very tough to have your defenses in a place where they can repel this sort of attack without taking substantial losses. Given the timer in this mission you straight up do not have time to re-build things if they get destroyed. The only reason we're bunkering up here instead of immediately moving out is to give us time to move everyone over from HQ.
Thanks to our wall of towers the GC attack is going nowhere. After an initial skirmish I pull the surviving Hans back behind the walls to protect them from additional fire. I'd rather lose a tower than a Han.
Thankfully, our second wave has arrived and they can also begin to put pressure on the attackers.
Another in-game hour passes and the first threat has been eliminated. But now is not the time to rest.
That western position is too good to give up and I'm worried about how long it will take to extend my line of towers. I order the Gruz to build another wall of towers here.
But it looks like the GC has other ideas. That's another attack force moving in through the...Chinese jungle? Do they have jungles in the middle of China? I'm pretty sure it's all forests there.
The enemy attack hits us hard and fast. Fortunately our ground troops, combined with our air units are able to blunt their attack.
But the next wave of attackers aren't fucking around. That's a Volga with artillery there.
And that's an Ural with artillery. Dear god.
I've dismantled the flanks of the defensive wall but kept the center to deal with the GC pulling bullshit like this: ignoring our defenses to the west and attempting a frontal assault. Had I sold everything this would've been very successful.
Our helicopters are attempting to soften up any units that come through the forest. Unfortunately, they're getting absolutely pulverized by enemy anti-air fire. To keep their numbers up I order two of the weapons factories to start pumping out an infinite number of Hans. They'll be used to replace any downed choppers.
We're getting shelled Quick everyone move forward!
Our charge has mostly stopped the assault, but as you can see from all the husks on the hill we've taken fairly serious losses.
The last enemy Ural is dead. Now it's time to re-group.
We've started getting harassed from the north by the Hans so I'm building a few towers here to intercept and deflect any attack away from our power plants and mobile units.
The following morning we're attacked again. We don't have enough time to sit here and wait for an opening. I order the air force north to try and find a path to the Bridge of Doom.
With 72 hours to go we've, thankfully, found a way to the Bridge of Doom. At this point we can't afford any more tank losses. The defenses will have to hold their own now.
Our army anxiously awaits the command to move out.
At 1100 the order comes. All tanks are to move to the position held by the Han helicopters. The enemy is not to be engaged at this time however.
I'll let the Hans take care of that.
The GC have only mounted a token defense of this pass, presumably they're unable to commit more units as that last attack drained their reserves.
But they do send a few token units. Nothing to worry about.
The first few units of the army have arrived. To celebrate I destroy the enemy power plant.
Meanwhile, outside our base I discover where all the GC units are. They've gotten clever. Rather than attacking us at the start or end point of our journey they're using their Han helicopters to intercept us when we're exposed in the Chinese jungle. Unfortunately those ruins don't lead to where we're going so I have no choice but to expose us to the attack. At least our Screamers are keeping the Hans from reporting back for reinforcements and turning this into a turkey shoot.
The last of our units have left the base, nearly 5 hours later. It's hard to move an army quickly.
The only thing blocking us from the bridge is this outpost. The Hans are here to monitor only. They're given strict orders not to attack ("hold position" rather than the default "chase enemy" order).
As our army arrives I have them set up to prepare to defend our flanks while I maneuver the artillery into position.
With the artillery in place I give the order to open fire. The GC doesn't take kindly to this, as you can see from their incoming Han helicopter.
We're burning through ammo at an incredible rate. I order the Gruz to set up a supply depot here, enabling faster reloads.
Thank god I left the Hans in hold position mode. Three enemy Urals moved in from the west to try and take out the artillery. I didn't even know they could come from there! Fortunately the Hans drowned them in missiles before it became a problem. Given our current position I'm going to move the rest of the army up to defend this spot, rather than their southern position. It puts any possible fighting close to the artillery, but it's a risk I'm willing to take.
The way to the bridge looks clear now that all the power plants have been removed. Given the difficulty of what's coming though I need to consolidate a bit.
The GC moves in some units from the northern side of the bridge. We lose a few units, but I still think it's enough to push forward.
However, that push will need to wait while the bulk of our army defend our flank from another enemy attack. Quite clever GC with this pincer maneuver.
I'm beginning to worry about our ability to punch through the defenses. We've lost a few artillery units and the key to this mission is speed, not patience. I set this WPC to infinite artillery production to make up for any losses.
The pincer attack has morphed into a full-out assault on our eastern position. With the enemy's attack stopped to the west, I'm comfortable moving the rest of the army over.
Thank god I do. Things are getting pretty damn punishing here.
With the attack repelled its time for our counter-assault. I order our two remaining artillery units to open fire on the Bridge of Doom's defenses. Unfortunately two of our other units also believe this order applies to them.
They didn't stand a chance. They went from full shields to metal husks in under a second. There's just no way to repel laser fire of that magnitude.
Except with artillery. Of course you need to be careful here. Indiscriminately firing will destroy the bridge and make it impossible to cross. These are precision artillery strikes, focused only on the power plants.
While the artillery take out the last power plant, I have the Hans start clearing out the towers. They're not a danger to us anymore but I don't like them there.
The bridge is clear! Repeat, the bridge is clear!
I give the army an hour or so to catch its breath. Once they've formed up we'll be moving across the bridge. Meanwhile the helicopters continue to pick at the powerless towers.
The army's R&R doesn't last. The GC are sending in yet another assault.
The assault failed, but to my horror I realize its purpose was not to damage our units, but rather to destroy the bridge. Thankfully there are still some good bits left, but I simply do not trust the integrity of the western branch. We'll need to move quickly down the eastern half.
That's our goal. I want everyone moving as fast as they absolutely can. That bridge can turn into a kill zone faster than you can say "Dynasty."
A few of the units want to take potshots at the towers. I'll let them, not like it's going to slow things down all that much. Plus I'm moving the air force in for cover. They should be protected from any counter-attack.
quote:MAYDAY MAYDAY MAYDAY
bzz-REPEAT ENEMY HAS ANTI-AIR SITUATED AROUND THE-bzzzz
bzz-DO NOT ATTEMPT-bhzzz
Dear god. Our air force is being picked out of the sky. The GC hid their anti-air defenses on the shore around the bridge. I can't do anything but watch as each unit falls in a hail of bullets.
Our first few units have made the journey across, but it's no time to celebrate. I order them to focus their fire on any anti-air towers around the bridge. We must save the air force!
But it's too late. Our air force has been almost entirely destroyed. We can't uncommit ourselves from the crossing, we must move forward.
We were able to clear out some of the towers on the other side, but it's still too dangerous for the air force to move anywhere north of the bridge. They'll stay back here and cover our flank.
But at least the army has secured a beachhead for us. Now it's time to bring in the artillery and show the GC who's boss!
Wait. Why did some random spot on the map just explode when we started firing rockets? Nothing was there...
Shit. Guys I think I figured out where the UCS stealth technology went! Fall back! All units fall back! This is a trap!
Oh god. The GC must've snuck in a Han to destroy the last bit of the bridge when we weren't looking. Our artillery is stranded. And the army is now trapped, trying to fight off an invisible enemy.
What are we going to do?
Next time: China, Part 2. I hope the Generals make it