Part 35: India
The alliance negotiations are taking place in India. I assume the LC representative is Sombra or Korlan although the game never comes out and tells you for sure.
Why are you sending your alliance negotiator in a Moon m1? Shouldn't you pick something a bit sturdier? Why not send Fang? I hear he's impossible to kill and he's ex-UCS on top of all that.
And our negotiator is in a Minelayer. Great. We've got these great AI units why can't they take over the Grizzlies and negotiate within them? Nope, instead we're going to pick one of the most fragile units in the game. Thanks guys.
To make matters worse, neither of these units have shields. One hit from a laser-equipped Siberia and they're toast.
In a bit of good news, the game gives us starting units that are actually useful! These Spider I Ps will be more than sufficient to defend negotiations until the Albatross gets here with the big guns.
The negotiations are taking place in a valley a few meters from our LZ. At least these diplomats picked an easily defended location.
Our forces from HQ have arrived, but it'll take them a bit to make it down to the valley.
In the meantime, the ED has sent 3 Siberia Rs after our negotiators. Let's see what these Plasma Cannons can do.
All three enemies dead, and only moderate damage to one Spider. Holy shit.
No time to gloat though, a battalion of tanks is on the horizon and speeding towards the negotiation site.
The HQ forces arrive, but not in time to join in on the slaughter of the Dynasty units. We take one loss to their 4.
Plasma is really, really, really fucking good. Have I mentioned that yet? I put the Grizzlies in position to defend against any units that make it through our plasma screen.
Spoilers: no one makes it through our plasma screen.
Shit. If we're going up against NEO that could be very, very bad. I don't wanna lose my Grizzlies (again)
NEO appears to be an Iron Maiden fan. Or more likely, based on his love of old movies, he's a fan of the Free Cinema movement. The writers deserve some credit for the cultural references they use with NEO. It really makes him stand out when everyone else in the UCS campaign is boring and robotic.
While we figure out a plan to defend against our units turning on us, I research the final upgrade for the Panther.
My next defensive move is to have my Mammoth build a giant wall along the east side of the base. If I get attacked, I want to be attacked where I have the high ground.
Looks like the escort shoe is on the other foot! We'll need to get this Moon back to her sisters. It's not going to be easy.
Our army consists mostly of Spider Ps. This will work to our advantage, but some of the units are outdated.
Nothing a bit of time upgrading can't fix! The one downside to mass upgrades is that they do cost money. If you've run out of credits you won't be able to do the upgrades.
Wow, look at all those units the LC has. Boy, wouldn't it be nice if they started attacking the ED from the north while we worked our way up from the south?
It sure would! Too bad the LC won't do that. They're programmed to sit in their base and churn out a million units and do nothing useful mission making me very annoyed.
The ED have put our choke-point to shame here. This is very well fortified. Unfortunately there's no way around and I've deliberately kept the Night Barons back at HQ. I want to show you how strong Plasma Cannons are.
And in just a few seconds we've already broken through the first line and crippled the defenses. That is the strength of Plasma.
Those oncoming tanks don't have a chance either.
See? They're all dead. And now we can kill a Gruz that's moving in to try and rebuild the defenses. He lasts maybe 3 seconds before my Spiders cut him down. Onwards to the second line!
The second line also doesn't last very long. Unfortunately some of my Spiders strayed a bit too close to the lasers and we took a fair number of losses.
The Panther III is done. 1200 HP and the same speed as a Spider. Can't beat that.
As insurance against a NEO-sponsored mutiny I research the Fortress. As you may recall from the bonus update these things are tough as nails and should be able to hold off any traitor robots.
Back on the remnants of the defensive line, the Grizzlies have taken out the last bit of power. We'll clean up here, reorganize and push on.
And one of our new members will be this shiny new Panther III R. He's not quite as good as the Grizzlies but he can be just as tough.
So the Minelayer. I'm going to be honest, I've never found a good use for the Minelayer. LC units aren't affected by the mines and you need to mine a very large area for it to be worth it. The best use of the Minelayer is probably to sniff out enemy mines. But if you notice your units are randomly taking damage you can just avoid the area. It may only be 5,000 CR but I just don't see the point in researching the Minelayer. We've got higher priority researches and if we get some extra credits I'll research the chassis, but for now this might be our only showcase of the Minelayer. Of course the ED don't lay any mines here and we're on the offensive so laying our own mines is silly.
NOAH I is happy with us! Yay! And the next phase only requires 10,000 CR. That's easy.
Our giant defensive wall is complete. Of course, there aren't any towers on it but the point is to force the AI pathing to take the other approach to our base.
The Heavy Rocket Launcher is our next research goal. Oddly, the game doesn't identify the UCS Heavy Rocket Launcher as a heavy weapon.
With our forces re-supplied and reinforced we make our next attack. The UCS robots are ordered to approach with lights off to surprise the ED.
It's a masterful ambush. The power is out before the ED even knows what's happening.
The real target of this strike is not the WPCs and VPCs but the ED's mining base. With it destroyed we can nab some resources ourselves and prevent further reinforcements.
It's not hard to destroy the mining base when our Plasma Cannons can level a structure before they can even train their weapons on us.
And now we have a much nicer looking UCS mining base in its place. Let's send NOAH I those 10,000 CR so we can get a nice gold star on our next progress report.
The LC does the only useful thing they do all mission: they plant a Defender that destroys two Cossack helicopters that got lost. Well done Lunar Corporation
With the Heavy Rocket Launcher complete, its time to upgrade the ammunition. The Grizzlies use Heavy Rocket Launchers so this will make them even more fearsome.
The same can't be said for the Panther III hR. It does less damage than its regular rocket counterpart. I can't think of a reason why you'd even opt to make the hR version of the Panther versus the regular rocket version. It even costs the same!
I build a Fortress near the mining base, just in case the ED get sneaky and try an attack. At 3,000 CR a pop (plus weapons upgrades) it's not the smartest use of funds though.
A Spider scout has discovered more well-positioned ED towers.
They're not much of a match for our Plasma, but it looks like we've discovered a second ED base.
And now the ED can't reload its weapons. I imagine we'll destroy most tanks and towers before they need to reload, but it's an advantage.
And just like that we've destroyed another ED base. The UCS are finally fun to play instead of rather annoying with lots of micro-management.
We kill the towers for good measure on our way out.
There's one last ED barricade on our way to the LC base. We can either go through those towers and pillboxes...
...Or we can destroy those two Small Towers and sneak by using this ravine. Fight smart, not hard.
Work continues on upgrading the Heavy Rockets.
Unfortunately we can't get into the LC base this way. It'd be great if there was a back entrance, but sadly we'll need to go through those ED defenses.
...Of course there is a back entrance into the ED's defensive line.
No power, no problem.
Our last obstacle: a bunch of Small Towers. This is pretty good positioning, but they don't have a prayer against the might of Plasma technology
The way is clear. Bring up the Moon!
You're home little fella! Go tell your sisters how great an ally President Axeil and the UCS are.
Thanks for that crucial update GOLAN.
After all that about NEO being our opposing commander this mission he didn't even try to take over our units. Maybe Fang told him not to?
One last rocket upgrade.
You really couldn't have sent us one unit to help out? You have an entire army there!
Our last bit of research for this mission is the Heavy Grenade Launcher. It's not as good as the Plasma Cannon but I like variety in my units. Plus they'll help with buildings once the ED have shields.
10,000 credits, just like NOAH ordered!
General Barin built 50 units and only killed those 2 lost Cossacks I showed you earlier. I think she gets an award for the best turtler in an RTS.
What ARES XIV doesn't say is that the LC have prepared the plans for the shield technology here. Unfortunately if they all die the research dies with them. It's essential we learn how to put shields on our units if we're going to take the fight to the ED.