The Let's Play Archive

Military Madness

by Polybius91

Part 18: BONUS: Sirs Not Appearing In This Let's Play


For this last one, I've decided to show you guys some of the stuff that's come up in the Nectaris/Military Madness series that I didn't cover in this LP.

I'll start with hard mode, and in doing so I'll show you just why I didn't include hard mode in the LP.

Rather than a save system, this game uses a password screen. The passwords are just the stage names, and you can only use them to go to the beginning of the stage. I don't think I need to tell you why this can make RNG bullshittery very, very frustrating.

To start with, let's go to Milton, the first stage in hard mode.

It's a bit of a leap from Revolt, which makes sense - you're not supposed to be here until you've beaten the game. Overall, though, this still isn't a terribly difficult map - the trick is to pull back so you don't have to risk getting in their Atlas range, and keep your Eagle safe until it can safely fly in and destroy it.

All in all, it's definitely easier than what you have to go through to get to it.

That's hell of a lot more than I can say for stage 22, Arbine. Here's what's hiding in the factories:

1. Polar, Grizzly, Grizzly, Polar
2. Lynx
3. Atlas, Bison, Bison, Octopus, Octopus

If you've figured out a way to either 1) get past the field of death and take at least one of the factories, or 2) beat the more powerful units outnumbering you 2:1 without any way to heal, then congratulations, you're better at this game than I am.

I mentioned the DOS version awhile back, and said I wouldn't be LPing it because it would mean beating not only hard mode but 64 new missions, most or all of them worse than this. While we're on the subject:

The DOS version has 3 campaigns: Triton (which, for some reason, it calls the original, even though that takes place on Earth's moon), Romulous, and Pacifica. Romulous looks like a pretty lush world, it should be a nice break from the moon. Let's just jump in and see what -

Yes, this is Master, the very first new map. You are literally outnumbered two to one, and unless you're extremely daring and extremely lucky, it's only going to become worse when the enemy takes that factory to the right.

We can see there's two new units here, though. Does it get any better when you know what they are?

Not especially, no. The Flytrap isn't going to do much good against the trio of Giants headed your way, and all those Turtles will make it aggravatingly difficult to get to the enemy's prison camp.

By the way, those claims that Turtles can only counterattack are dirty lies. The AI's can shoot first, but yours can't

They've given you the Flytrap because in the factory the enemy's almost certainly going to get is a pair of...

...these bastards. They're like Eagles, but not as powerful. Still trouble when your only anti-air is a Flytrap, though.

Wait a minute, what's this about a Galaxy carrier?

Well, now that we're not on the moon anymore, we have botes boats now! This is the first map of Pacifica, and it's even worse than Romulous. You'll see what I mean when you find out these unit stats. We've got an Eagle on our prison camp, but everything else here is new:

The Firefox is a jetpack infantry, and it's only really notable for having high air attack for an infantry. The catch is that after it moves once, it turns into a Charlie.

The Piranha isn't terribly impressive - it's pretty much just a water-borne Lynx. Makes sense we'd get stuck with three of them, then.

The Dolphin, on the other hand, is a pretty nice piece of hardware. It might not be as fast as a Rabbit, but it can hit from two tiles away so it doesn't have to put itself in harm's way to attack, and it's got heavier armor than a Polar.

The Orcer is something truly unique compared to anything you'd see in the original. It can repair one unit per turn, typically for 2HP if it's at full health.

Just like other units gain experience in combat, the Orcer gains experience by repairing. A full-star, full-health Orcer can typically heal a unit for 4HP per turn, without the need to cart it into a factory first, so it's very useful to have around.

The Storm and the Vulcan aren't terribly interesting, though either one's more than a match for our Piranhas. I wonder what that large ship's stats are?

Yes, you read that right. It attacks twice per turn. This is the kind of unit they make when they decide the Hunter isn't ridiculous enough.

But hey, at least it's really slow and sea-bound, right? It's not like it can fly or anything.

The only real saving grace here is that fighters can chew it up pretty easily. But why is it yellow?

As you've probably guessed, it's possible to have more than one AI player at a time, even though it's always them vs. you. Also note the different names for the AI players, which indicate their behavior.

But hey, we can win, because we've got helicopters on our side!

...Unfortunately, Dragons aren't that great. They're something of a jack-of-all-trades, very versatile but not really good at any particular role. Their attack range and ability to hit-and-run give them good survivability, but that might mean more if they were more useful alive.

There are more new units on this map, so let's see what's here.

The Nextor is just a land-based Orcer.

The Thunder is the air defense version of the Atlas, and at 7 hexes, its attack range is the longest of any unit I've seen in the series.

The Whale is a heavy transport, like the Pelican. Except it's a boat.

The Seagull is a Hawkeye on water.

The Invader is a Mule on water.

The Typhoon is a goddamn nightmare. It's got the exact same gun as an Atlas, but it's got sky-high defense and anti-air guns that make it as dangerous up-close as a Giant.

Remember the "sea-based bomber" that was mentioned earlier? This is where you house them.

The Galaxy is a damn fine unit. With defense higher than a Giant and decent anti-air and anti-surface attack, it's no slouch in combat, but it also acts as a mobile factory for your sea-based aircraft, being able to both store and repair them. Aircraft leaving a Galaxy can move and attack on the same turn, too.

In addition to the Dragons and Bussards, the Galaxy also houses...

Similar to the Bussard, the Warhawk is a fighter that makes up for not being quite as good as the Falcon by being able to use the Galaxy's services.

I took this screencap just to demonstrate how insane this game's campaigns can get. It has absolutely no qualms about throwing gigantic clusters of units at you.

Another new change, as seen here, is that some units can start with full experience. Why a Mule of all things gets it, I'll never know.

Then again, I guess you'd only trust an experienced Mule to carry this thing.

I can't get the Hornet's full stat screen because it never appears on the map independently - you have to load it onto a Mule or a Whale. Then you can fire it up to a range of six hexes, at which point it hits its target (along with anything nearby) for absolutely massive damage. Of course, you lose the Hornet in the process.

One very irritating thing about this is that, if you try to destroy the AI's Mules so it can't use its Hornets, it'll try to deploy them anyway and the game will lock up. So, yeah, fuck this game.

One more minor thing to note: to allow for the truly ridiculous unit counts in the later missions, factories are no longer limited to storing 12.

The game actually lets you grab some Hunters this time around, but it's not nearly enough to make up for the bullshit you have to deal with.

The last few units that I never had the chance to show off before. I don't know if the AI's Urchines cheat like their Turtles and attack even though they shouldn't be able to.

The Shark is interesting because it seems designed to specifically counter one other unit. The Dolphins are the only submarines in the game.


That's it for the DOS version of Nectaris, but there was another, Japan-only sequel that came out for the Turbografx-CD, called Neo Nectaris. While it also introduced a line of "even more ridiculous than the Hunter" units, this one was a bit more conservative in the number of new units, mainly because it had no naval combat.

I've mentioned this before, but I couldn't get Neo Nectaris to run. This means I haven't actually used or fought any of these units, so I can't tell you how good they are, but I'll offer my thoughts. I got all the information from this useful website.

Since the game was never released in English, I'll be calling these units by their technical names:


Shift: 3
Defense: 4
Ground Attack: 8
Ground Range: 1
Air Attack: 5
Air Range: 1

The GX-97 might look like a Charlie that's worse at everything, but it actually has a unique ability: it automatically repairs any adjacent units for 2HP per turn. Since the Orcer and Nextor aren't in Neo Nectaris, this is the only way to heal Atlases or Triggers.


Shift: 6
Defense: 20
Ground Attack: 40
Ground Range: 2
Air Attack: 40
Air Range: 2

The HA-55 can move and attack in the same turn, but can't retreat after attacking. It has a gimmick, but funny enough that gimmick actually makes it worse: it can't attack unless there's a friendly infantry next to it! I'd imagine this turns a fairly mediocre unit into one that's borderline useless.


Shift: 0
Defense: 20
Ground Attack: 45
Ground Range: 4
Air Attack: 40
Air Range: 4

The SR-22 is an immobile artillery, similar to the Atlas. It can't hit as hard or as far, but it can shoot at air units and attack twice per turn. Seems like it'd be decently useful, but I'd still take an Atlas any day.


Shift: 9
Defense: 40
No attack

Neo Nectaris adds two new mine units, and this is one of them. This one's not nearly as tough as the Trigger, but it can fly around the map at high speeds. It could be used to stop up or surround enemy tanks, but I'd rather have a Falcon for that. After all, the Falcon's faster and can shoot down other aircraft.


Shift: 0
Defense: 80
Ground Attack: 90
Ground Range: 2
No air attack

Hey, look! It's a mine that finally actually behaves like a mine! Two turns after it's dropped, it explodes and does heavy damage to all ground units within 2 hexes. I don't know how good the AI is at dealing with these, but it seems like a well-placed one could easily turn the tide of a battle.


The next three units are a special kind, and as far as I know only the Axis gets them. They're called BioHeiki, and like the Hellcat, they're there to give you something even more nightmarish to fight than the Hunter.

You can't actually start damaging BioHeiki straight away - their current health initially shows up as "NO DATA," and if you hit them hard enough that becomes 8HP, and then you can start damaging them normally. Factories can house BioHeiki, but can't repair them. The GX-97 can give them the normal +2 HP per turn, but I don't think it can bring their health back up to NO DATA.

The main thing about BioHeiki, though, is that they start out "immature" and grow over time. Their stats start out low, and grow on turns 3 and 5. I'll denote changing stats as follows:

(Turns 1-2)->(Turns 3-4)->(Turns 5+)

So, what kind of stats do these guys have?


Shift: 4
Defense: 60->70->90
Ground Attack: 50
Ground Range: 1
Air Attack: 40
Air Range: 1

By turn 5, the BT-90 has even higher defense than a Giant. When you consider how tough Giants are, I don't think artillery is even an option against these things - realistically you'd probably have to surround them to do any damage.


Shift: 3
Defense: 50
Ground Attack: 60->70->90
Ground Range: 1
Air Attack: 60->70->90
Air Range: 1

Okay, I'd have to say this is probably worse than the BT-90. That one had high defense, sure, but at least it only hit your tanks as hard as a Bison. This thing combines the firepower of an Atlas and a Falcon, and anything that attacks it is going to get hurt bad in the counterattack. It's got the defense of a Grizzly though, so softening it up with an Octopus or Atlas should at least be an option.


Shift: 5->10->14
Defense: 40
Ground Attack: 60
Ground Range: 1
Air Attack: 40
Air Range: 1

An aerial unit, and probably the least threatening of the BioHeiki. When it's fully mature, it's faster than a Falcon (12 hexes/turn vs. 14), but as long as you've got decent air cover like you should, that shouldn't be an issue. Statistically, speed aside, it's just a poor man's Hunter.


Well, I think I've said all I have to say about the series. If any of this stuff has gotten you curious, you can find both the DOS version of the game and Neo Nectaris if you know where to look. For my own part, looking through all the bullshit the DOS version throws at the player has made me realize just how easy the original really was - on the normal campaign, I don't think I failed any of the missions more than 5 or so times, even my first time running through them. In the DOS version, there are missions even early on that I've had to retry a dozen or more times just to beat once, and even then I still can't do it reliably.

Thanks again to everyone who followed the LP, I hope you enjoyed it!