Part 89: The Third Ring
rest of briefing posted:
After finishing off the enemy, start building a mining refinery and two Platinum Power Plants in the crater near each enemy base. It should be easy to find those craters. They are full of resources.
You guys know the drill at this point: kill the UCS and then mine the craters.
We've finally got access to the Thunderer heavy bomber. It's not needed as badly as it is in the base game, but it'll be nice to have a more well-armored unit to counter the UCS's new found love of AAP.
Research: Thunderer m1 and m2
Unlike last time, we don't need to do a ton of searching to find our base location. That's an absolute treasure trove of resources. Project SUNLIGHT's costs have to be astronomical. These resources alone would probably be enough to build half of the evacuation fleet.
With the base area looking secure I head off through the valley to the west to do some scouting. And look what I found!
New pieces of scrap!
The Thunderers have discovered our southern exit is very narrow. With only two narrow paths out of the base I'm thinking the UCS aren't stupid enough to try a ground assault. And if they are, a few Guardian Towers should dissuade them. We'll need to think about beefing up our air defenses instead of focusing on a traditional defense.
Given that we're surrounded by cliffs and mountains, I think a series of Defenders, Guardians and NESTs will pummel any attempt to break through. We should be able to hold our positions in the valleys quite easily if we have static defenses on the high ground.
Oh good! One of the New Hope pilots has made it out to the battlefield. She'll be serving not only as a beacon of inspiration, but will also be in command on the ground. You can never discount the importance of a good sergeant.
Our ownership of the high ground is already paying off. This Mammoth doesn't have a prayer.
Another UCS patrol, another heap of scrap.
We don't quite have perfect coverage in the mountains. There's a gap here that we're not able to build on. So I'll have our 3 AAR Super Fighters set up shop in this weak point. They'll be able to handle anyone who tries to thread the needle.
Our defenses are set! Time to head for the first UCS base
Wellllllp this is embarrassing. Looks like I was right, the UCS won't be trying a land attack but not because there's a natural choke point. No, it's because the only way out of the base is directly in the path of our attack force
Good thing we can sell these useless towers!
And yet another UCS patrol dies. They're still not using shields. What the hell is wrong with them? Did they forget to pack their shield generators when they flew up here?
With all these defense towers our power needs are a bit higher than usual. I could build another Solar Power Plant and its associated panels and battery or I could just put down one building instead of 11. I'm going with the more expensive but faster option.
Huh. This is funny. Our towers see a bunch of UCS units in the valley below but they can't hit them, try as they might. Likewise, the UCS see the towers but can't hit them. So the two sides are going to sit here lobbing missiles at each other until the run out. Then they'll reload and the cycle will continue.
Our main attack force has joined up with the units holding down the valley. Let's begin the first assault.
We're up against a Fortress but we're throwing out way more damage than they can possibly hope to counter.
One salvo later and it's already down for the count. Shields are your friend Mr. Robot commander!
We're taking fire from the ground? How is that possible...unless they...no. They didn't. They couldn't have.
Did they cloak all their units and hide them behind the Fortress!?
Ladies, concentrate all your firepower on that Shadow Tower! It's our only chance!
One less Shadow Tower and yet I still can't see any of their units. Maybe they've fallen back?
Oh right. More Shadow Towers. Keep focusing on them! If we don't take them out we're sitting ducks!
The Shadow Towers and the power plants are down, and would you look at that. The UCS have a few Cargo Salamanders that were sitting there. I assume they were waiting for us to pass by and then hit us from behind. Good thing we noticed those Shadow Towers or we would've fallen for their trap.
The UCS is getting much more clever, even if they still won't use shields. I should stop underestimating them.
Of course, since their brilliant trap failed the base has been ripped to shreds and they have nothing to show for it.
Another power plant down and oh ho ho look at this. The UCS trap was even more elaborate than I thought. They had units hiding in the tunnels, waiting to emerge under the cover of the Shadow Towers to ruin our day. This sounds like something I'd try and pull off. Well assuming I was okay with letting the enemy waltz into the middle of my base. I'd never let that happen of course.
With the trap foiled and the base in utter desolation we just need to take out these last two power plants and we'll have the first crater.
Research: Air Heavy Rocket Launcher 1 and 2
These Harvesters are all that's left. The first crater is ours!
And with that comes building our mines and Xyrex plants in the center. 2 more to go.
This gate is easy to knock down when there's no power. It looks as if there are actually two gates out of here, this one to the south and another to the east. Let's try going east.
axeil from literally 5 minutes ago posted:
Well assuming I was okay with letting the enemy waltz into the middle of my base. I'd never let that happen of course.
I look like an idiot now don't I? It's only a Mammoth and the red UCS base is out of money so it poses no threat though. Boy would I have egg on my face if actual combat units got in there!
Ah. Looks like the eastern gate has its own power grid. Well, we know what to do with that.
Bye bye independent power grid. Bye bye first UCS base.
What I assume is the last group of ambush units rush in to try and defend the scraps of the UCS base but it's too late.
With the first base out of the way we can head east. Hey everyone, guess what's to the east!
That's right, its the first annual lunar rocket launching competition. The UCS are putting in a fantastic showing but don't count us out just yet.
I mean, I guess using lightning bolts in a rocket throwing contest is cheating but the judges said it was okay. Incidentally, all the judges are from the LC.
Let's move south and hit the next UCS base.
Hmm, a few Small Towers? Hah. I laugh at you UCS. See. This is me laughing at your pathetic attempts at de-
Oh god this is bad. They're absolutely coating us in plasma and we're losing units left and right. I think the UCS may have finally found a way to counter us.
Forward! Forward ladies! We can't turn back now.
Reports are coming in from our field commander. She says they're making progress but the losses are horrifying. They've never seen anything like this. I don't know how they haven't shattered completely and run. She must've put the fear of goddess into them.
We're almost there! Set your sights on the power plant. If we manage to topple it we can make it!
Hooray! But we're not out of the woods yet. The purple LC base's shadow tech is down due to the UCS's insistence on using lights, but night won't last for long. There will be time after this battle to grieve for our dead; if we stop now they'll push us back, rebuild and our sisters' lives will be for naught. We must continue forward!
Atta girl! Disabling the UCS walkers as they come off the production line is genius. This is exactly why I put that New Hope pilot in charge on the ground; she's a tactical wizard.
The last of the towers have been destroyed and we've managed to grab a foothold in the entryway of the UCS base.
And quickly that foothold becomes a serious incursion.
And in mere minutes we're deep in enemy territory. There are more UCS walkers inbound but I think we can hold them off.
We've whittled away the defenses and I think we're going to carry the day here. I'm still in awe of that wall of Small Towers. It's...very troubling. Almost as if the UCS commander knew exactly how we operate and planned perfectly for it. Almost as if we had a spy among us...
This is a bit of a problem. We can't reach the last two structures in the UCS base. We've built in the crater but we don't get credit for taking the southern base until everything is destroyed.
I decided to have some fun with eliminating these last two instead of building some more air units and letting them take care of it.
Putting plasma projectors on towers is really, really, really unfair.
We've got one more base to go. Guess it's time to drive through more generic twisting canyons.
A Dragon-class bomber? What in the world? Why is it hanging out in this valley? It's much better suited to attacks than assault interdiction.
Looks like the cyan UCS base isn't as clever as it's red or purple comrades. Still, I'm on my toes.
Nothing unusual yet...
Still nothing...although I do really like their use of HQ building as beefier defensive buildings since the UCS variant gets two turrets.
The power is cut. Still nothing. No tricks. Maybe the cyan base is run by the worst of the three commanders? It was all the way in the back behind the two other bases after all.
Research: Heavy Rocket Launcher 3
You know, this whole assault has been kind of well... Odd. There weren't any mobile units except for those Repairers and the defenses are nowhere near as robust as the other two bases.
That's where the units went. They're marching right past all my towers and headed for the base itself. And our entire army is on the other side of the map. I take it all back. The cyan commander is the best of the lot. He (it?) knew the base was doomed but decided to take me out at the same time. It's just a race against time now, who's base is going to fall first?
You have got to be fucking kidding me. He built a mass of Small Towers too, but this time it's in the back of the base. You know, the area we need to clear out so we can build into the crater. Shit. There's not enough time to try a more clever approach, we need those towers down now or the cyan army will rout our base. Forward...
The last UCS base is destroyed, but at a terrible cost. Our might army has been reduced to only half its size. We lost a lot of good women today.
Mother Knows Best? You've got some really 20th century tastes for a lady from the 22nd century.
More UCS units are pouring into our base. I don't think there's any way to stop them now. We'll need to do an evac from the final crater.
With the battle won I order all our buildings sold, but it's too late for some of them. The UCS are willing to sit in the base and snipe our extraction teams.
Fortunately for the army, we manage to evac in time. But I'm pretty sure everyone at the base isn't gonna make it.
The game doesn't count the destruction of sold buildings towards the destroyed count. Very odd.
Satellite-based plasma cannons on Luna? They wouldn't have the restrictions they do on Gaia, these would be able to hit anything they wanted. Not just military targets either. They'd be able to hit our homes. Our families.
URGENT - FROM THE DESK OF GENERAL FANG DETECTED PLASMA CANNONS ON LUNAR SURFACE. BELIEVE THEY ARE FINAL STAGES OF SATELLITE PLASMA NETWORK. WILL RENDEZVOUS WITH YOU AT THE COORDINATES ATTACHED TO SEEK OUT AND DESTROY. -FANG
Our evacuation fleet.
Forget Project SUNLIGHT; this is an existential threat to the Lunar Corporation itself. We cannot under any circumstances allow these cannons to come online. Thank goddess Fang hasn't shipped back to Gaia yet. We need him one last time.