Part 22: UCS Intro/Ural
Welcome back to Let's Play Earth 2150. Last time we finished up the LC campaign so it's time for a new faction. I asked everyone for their thoughts and you decided on the United Civilized States. Robots are cool.
Let's check out their recruitment video:
Yes I would like to launch them. Also, I like how the game had the idea for QR codes before QR codes existed.
NOAH...as in Noah's Ark? Well at least GOLAN IV gets some credit for being clever. Oh and if you didn't notice we're playing as the UCS President.
Here's our Spaceport. Unlike the LC campaign, this time we need 1,000,000 CR, twice what we did last time. There's a greater need for over-mining and resource conservation. If you recall in the LC campaign I could've won the campaign on the third-to-last mission. I doubt I'll be so fortunate this campaign.
Here's the rest of the UCS HQ. The UCS splits unit production between the Weapons Production Center (in the background) and the Vehicle Production Center (in the foreground). The WPC makes military units and the VPC makes civilian units. The VPC also costs only half of what the WPC does, but both are cheaper than the LC's Main Base.
Unlike the LC and ED, the UCS mines with special Harvester units. To assign the unit you click on the mineral patch and the Harvester will automatically deposit the minerals at the nearest Refinery or Ore Transport Refinery. If you'd like it to go elsewhere you can manually select a building. One Harvester is much slower than the ED or LC mining solutions, but if you saturate a field with them they can deplete it must faster and much cheaper than the ED or LC because you can continually re-use your Harvesters by sending them back to HQ. That lets you save money on building all the mining buildings the LC and ED need for their resource gathering.
The UCS (and ED) use a unit for construction rather than building from space. This is kind of nice, since now structures are sorted by type: Production, Economic, Defense and Other. Production has your production buildings, the Aerial Supply Depot and Nuclear Power Plant. Economic has the two different refineries. Defense has defensive buildings, walls, terrain modification and underground digging. Other has anything that doesn't fit in the other three categories like Landing Zones and HQ buildings.
The UCS (and ED) have a finite power range. By pressing F9 you can turn the power overlay on. Anything in green is currently powered and can support buildings that require power. Anything in blue can be built on if you build a Power Transmitter to extend the Nuclear Power Plant's range. Anything blank is out of range and requires a new Nuclear Power Plant. This is a very useful overlay and I'll be using it the rest of this mission. However, for future missions I'll try to turn it off when I'm not building my base.
Here we have our two starting units, the Tiger I 20mm and the Tiger I G. The 20mm is the same as the LC's 20mm, but the Grenade Launcher is new. Grenades cannot hit air units but make a great early weapon since they deal very rapid damage with a high ammo capacity. They're very good against poorly armored ED tanks.
Here's our first mission, in the same location as the LC's first mission.
Africa and the Middle East are covered in snow except for a little bit at the equator. It must be really, really cold out.
I think -45 degrees Celsius is pretty damn cold. Guess that explains why the old hot areas on Earth are now covered in snow.
So just like the LC mission, we have to find the resources before we can mine them. Also like the LC mission, NOAH I has advised us not to go looking for trouble since the ED has superior numbers.
But I like scouting
Wow those resources sure were hard to find!
You can get an idea of how small the range of our Nuclear Power Plant is here. The resource field is all blue lightning bolts despite the fact we can see it from where the power plant is located. Most UCS bases will be filled with power transmitters due to this.
I build 2 Harvesters instead of sending them over from HQ and start mining. The Ore Transport Refinery is just like a regular Refinery except it sends resources back to the Spaceport.
As I said earlier, the UCS Mammoth can alter terrain. Since walls can be destroyed digging ditches around your base is a great way to keep enemy units out. The only way to get around ditches is to build a bridge over them. And with proper defenses set up you'll be able to destroy anyone before they get the bridge they need built. Even better, terrain modification is completely free.
However there is a downside to changing the terrain. If you modify the terrain sometimes the new terrain will make the way forward impassible for your Mammoth, requiring you to rescue the Mammoth with another one. This is why I've never done too much terrain modification as you end up babysitting the Mammoth to make sure he doesn't get himself stuck.
Back to HQ we go to bring over a Mammoth for a rescue mission.
While we're here, we can start work on the only piece of research available to us this mission: an upgrade to the Tiger I.
The HQ Mammoth levels the terrain at the back of the ditch to let the first Mammoth escape.
Hooray, the Mammoth has been saved from
Let's stick with walls for now.
Another great AI name. GOLAN IV might be the most creative AI I've ever seen in a game. I will do my best to resist my biological urges ARES.
Oh and this is why you shouldn't do any scouting. I wanted to make this a bit more fun than: mine minerals and win so I purposely tried to find the ED.
6 Tiger I 20mms versus 4 Pamir 105mms is not a fair fight. For us.
I think this illustrates why. We took out the 3 tanks but have already lost half our army. If I was the ED I'd take that trade every time.
It's time to reinforce our army with new units. As you can see the building is right on the edge of our power range. This is why it's so useful to keep the power overlay on. I saved 100 CR by checking my power grid before building this WPC.
This scout has found a whole bunch of Pamirs. I'm guessing the base is to the east there, but this guy doesn't have a prayer against so many Pamir tanks.
I sent too many of my Harvesters to the Refinery and now there aren't enough minerals left at our mining site to get to the 20,000 CR we need.
But since the mission doesn't automatically end I can use a trick I've got up my sleeve.
Step 1: Give the Albatross transport 5,000 CR you've already mined at the Main Base and fly back to the battlefield.
Step 2: Defend your base from more ED attacks
Step 3: Win the mission when you transfer the 5,000 CR over to the Ore Transport Refinery
(Optional) Step 4: Laugh at how dumb the UCS AIs are.
Sadly we don't have any time to gloat as the ED forces are overrunning our base. They've already destroyed the LZ so we can only make one trip with our Albatross transport.
The ED tanks can just waltz right in now that there are no units to stop them.
I know it's going to be tough but I'm going to try and save as many of these Harvesters as I can. The Dynasty has already gotten to one of them.
Come on little guy! You can make it!
YES! We saved him. And since the ED didn't bring any anti-air units they can only sit there and watch as the Albatross flies back to our HQ.
Check out this cool new score screen. I'm digging the lightning combined with our walkers looking menacing. Unfortunately Major Wlad kicked our ass this mission. More research, more units, more buildings, more dead units. Wait, we killed more units than he did!? Nice! At least we did something right this mission.
We managed to get both Mammoths and 5 Tigers back to base. Not too bad considering how quickly things went pear-shaped there.
I hope Stanford Lab is as hilarious as ACME Labs was. Also, that is not where Stanford is. Unless it's Stanford, NE.
A new faction brings new music. Today I have the UCS Main Theme and also the UCS Ambient theme. Enjoy!