Strategy Guide/FAQ - Guide for Mechwarrior 4: Vengeance
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Mechwarrior 4: Vengeance Unofficial Strategy Guide and FAQ by Kasey Chang (email@example.com) released January 6, 2001 0 Introduction This is an UN-official strategy guide and walkthrough for the game Mechwarrior 4: Vengeance from Microsoft. This document covers the single-player campaign in detail (how to approach each one), as well as go into a little about multiplayer gaming. 0.1 A word from the author This is a FAQ, NOT a manual. You won't learn how to play the game with this document, and I'm NOT about to add it to ease the life of software pirates. This USG only covers the PC version since that's the only version that I have (and exist, at the time of this document's release). Some of you may recognize my name as the editor for the XCOM and XCOM2: TFTD FAQ's, among many others. 0.2 Terms of Distribution This document is copyrighted by Kuo-Sheng "Kasey" Chang (c) 2000- 2001, all rights reserved excepted as noted above in the disclaimer section. This document is available FREE of charge subjected to the following conditions: 1) This notice and author's name must accompany all copies of this document: "Mechwarrior 4: Unofficial Strategy Guide" is copyrighted (c) 2000-2001 by Kasey K.S. Chang, all rights reserved except as noted in the disclaimer." 2) This document must NOT be modified in any form or manner without prior permission of the author with the following exception: if you wish to convert this document to a different file format or archive format, with no change to the content, then no permission is needed. 2a) In case you can't read, that means TXT only. No banners, no HTML borders, no cutting up into multiple pages to get you more banner hits, and esp. no adding your site name to the site list. 3) No charge other than "reasonable" compensation should charged for its distribution. Free is preferred, of course. Sale of this information is expressly prohibited. If you see any one selling this guide, drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org. 4) If you used material from this, PLEASE ACKNOWLEDGE the source, else it is plagiarism. 5) The author hereby grants all games-related web sites the right to archive and link to this document to share among the game fandom, provided that all above restrictions are followed. Sidenote: The above conditions are known as a statutory contract. If you meet them, then you are entitled to the rights I give you in 5), i.e. archive and display this document on your website. If you don't follow them, then you did not meet the statutory contract conditions, and therefore you have no right to display this document. If you do so, then you are infringing upon my copyright. This section was added for any websites that don't seem to understand this. For the gamers: You are under NO obligation to send me ANY compensation. However, I do ask for a VOLUNTARY contribution of one (1) US Dollar if you live in the United States, and if you believe this guide helped your game. If you choose to do so, please make your US$1.00 check or $1.00 worth of US stamps to "Kuo-Sheng Chang", and send it to "2220 Turk Blvd. #6, San Francisco, CA 94118 USA". If you don't live in the US, please send me some local stamps. I collect stamps too. 0.3 Distribution This USG should be available at Gamefaqs (http://www.gamefaqs.com) and other major PC game websites (such as gamesdomain.com, gamespot.com, gamecenter.com, etc.). To webmasters who wish to archive this FAQ on their website, please read the terms of distribution in section 0.2. It says exactly what it says. 0.4 Other Notes There is no warranty for this unofficial strategy guide. After all, it depends on YOU the player. All I can do is offer some advice. PLEASE let me know if there's a confusing or missing remark... If you find a question about this game that is not covered in the USG, e-mail it to me at email@example.com. I'll try to answer it and include it in the next update. 0.5 The Author I am just a game player who decided to write my own FAQs when the ones I find don't cover what I want to see. Lots of people like what I did, so I kept doing it. Previously, I've written Unofficial Strategy Guides (USGs) for XCOM, XCOM2:TFTD, Wing Commander 3, Wing Commander 4, Fade to Black, Spycraft, 688(I) Hunter/Killer. Mechwarrior 3, MW3 Expansion Pack, and Need for Speed: Porsche Unleashed. Most of them should be on gamefaqs.com, the biggest FAQ site around. You can also find some of them on my KC Game Nexus website at http://www.geocities.com/TimesSquare/Alley/6275. If you need to write me, send e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. (Any spam will be reported to respective authorities). 0.6 Disclaimer/ Copyright Information Mechwarrior 4 is a trademark of Microsoft. Mechwarrior and Battletech is licensed from FASA. This USG is not endorsed or authorized by Microsoft and FASA. The information compiled in this USG has been gathered independently through the author's efforts except where noted. This guide includes strategies and tactics of approaching each and every mission. If you need just a little help, don't read the rest! 0.7 Revision History 31-DEC-2000 Initial release. 06-JAN-2001 Added multiplayer tips, more mech configs, more weapon discussions 0.8 The Most Frequently Asked Questions Q: Can you send me Mechwarrior 4? A: Of course not. Q: Can you send me the manual (or portions thereof)? A: You're kidding, right? Q: Can you tell me how to play the game? A: Read the manual, please! Q: What's the latest version? A: There are no patches for the Windows version as of the release of this guide. Q: Is there a map editor? Mods? Inventory editor? Any hacks? A: None that I know of. Q: How about more multiplayer maps? A: Go to the official Microsoft MW4 website. Other sites are starting to play with the file structure so you may see more. Q: I got the new multiplayer map archive. Where do the individual files go? A: Didn't read the instructions, did you? If you installed in default path, then it should go to C:\Program Files\Microsoft Games\MechWarrior Vengeance\resource\missions Q: What's wrong with the mechlab? A: Nothing. That's the new design. Q: Do mechs actually limp with leg damage? A: Yes they do, though they need HEAVY leg-specific damage to show that. Q: Can a mech be knocked down? A: Yes, though the lack of extremely heavy weapons except LBX20s means it's hard to find the right combo. 3 LBX-20's in ONE concentrated salvo will usually knock down Shadow Cats and anything smaller. Mechs heavier than 50 tons doesn't seem to be knock-able unless they got hit by 4 gauss rifle bolts at the same time or something. (I've knocked down a Mad Cat Mk 2 once, hit him with 2 Class gauss and 2 light gauss at the same time). Q: Will there be a Mechwarrior 5? A: Who knows? Q: Are there any cheat codes? A: None known yet. Q: How do I get past mission X in the single-player campaign? A: See the specific campaign mission walkthrough. Q: Do your lancemates get better as they go on more missions? A: Absolutely. At the end of every mission you'll see a little improvement in the debrief screen. Q: What is a "boat" mech? A: The short answer: a boat mech is a mech that's configured with only ONE type of weapons. I.e. only missiles, only lasers, only AC's, etc. Use of "boat" mechs is frowned upon on some servers. See 8.2 for more details. Q: What if I spotted something missing or more tactics? A: Feel free to submit anything that can benefit this guide's readers. The e-mail address is email@example.com. Submissions will be included with your name attached unless you specify otherwise. I reserve the right to edit the wording or the reject entries. Feel free to submit your favorite mech config as well. Please specify purpose/role and some of the reasoning behind the config. 1 Game Information Mechwarrior 4 is the latest in the Mechwarrior series, a game with a long history. Mechwarrior originally is the role-playing part of the Battletech boardgame, a game of `mech combat. 1.1 Game History When Dynamix created the first Mechwarrior for Activision, it started the whole genre of in-cockpit mecha-type combat simulation. It was absolutely stunning for the time. No one expected that a simple 286 can support a 3D mech sim. You get light mechs from Locusts and Jenners up to Assault mechs like Marauder and Battlemasters. People were used to the old 2D stuff (indeed, Activision had already published "Crewscent Hawk's Inception" and "Crescent Hawk's Revenge", both are 2D). The game has a plot, a bit of adventure, plus combat, contract negotiation, hiring/firing mech pilots, buy/sell/repair mechs, and more. Each mission is dynamically generated. The game was an instant classic. When Dynamix was purchased by Sierra (who went on and created the Earthsiege/Starsiege universe based on their `mech experience), Activision had to create the sequel internally, and that took them much longer than expected. The result is Mechwarrior 2, where you play as a Clan warrior (of either Jade Falcon Clan or the Wolf Clan) battling other Clans and the Inner Sphere. There were plenty of missions. While the initial version did not include multiplayer, it was promised in a free patch which became known as "NetMech". Mechwarrior 2 was followed by an expansion pack that added the Ghost Bear Clan, as well as a semi-sequel: MW2: Mercenaries, where you play an Inner Sphere mercenary lance taking on different missions. The release of MW2 just caught the beginning of the 3D- accelerator revolution, and the different games and expansion packs were re-released in Titanium Edition with 3D-accelerator support. Some API-specific versions were also bundled with some 3D accelerators. Activision eventually lost the Battletech license to MicroProse, who apparently outbid them. Activision went on to license Heavy Gear from Dream Pod 9, another "mecha" universe. The first Heavy Gear was not well received. Heavy Gear II was much better, but the damage was already done. Activision went on to spend big bucks for the Star Trek license, abandoning the `mech genre altogether. MicroProse, on the other hand, was attempting to trim in-house expenses, and they contracted FASA Interactive to create Mechwarrior 3, based on the Battletech Virtual World sims. However, the game is HEAVILY delayed, and Microsoft was in negotiation to buy out FASA Interactive. MicroProse then negotiated with Microsoft and brought in Zipper Interactive to create Mechwarrior 3. The product being developed by FASA Interactive was changed to Mechwarrior 4. Mechwarrior 3 featured improved graphics and excellent interface, but the AI is pretty awful. And the inventory management interface is horrendous It is also very short at only 20 missions total in the campaign. The missions are pretty well designed. However, it was successful enough that MicroProse released an expansion pack titled Pirate's Moon which added another 21 missions, plus several other improvements including more mechs and more weapons. However, none of the real concerns were fixed. 1.2 What's the setup? You are Ian Dresari, a mechwarrior for House Davion, Federated Suns. Your father is the Duke of Kentares IV. While Victor Steiner-Davion was away leading the fight against the Clans, his sister, Katherine Steiner-Davion, usurped the throne of the Federated Commonwealth, and started to invade House Davion's territories, including Kentares IV. Your entire family has been killed (apparently) except your uncle, Sir Peter Dresari. You have just returned, and you'll take back the planet. Or die trying. 1.3 What do I need to run Mechwarrior 4? From the box * Pentium II 300 or higher CPU * Win95, Win98, WinME, or Win2K * 64 megs of RAM * 650 megs of HD space, plus 125 megs for swap file * 8X CD drive * Mouse or compatible pointing device * DirectX 8 (it says 7 on the box, but the game will install DX8 any way) * DX7 compatible sound card, Direct3D 7 compatible video card * Speakers or headphones for audio output * SVGA 16-bit color monitor or better Multiplayer further requires: * 96 megs required for Win2K * 28.8 Kbps modem or LAN with TCP/IP or IPX protocol * Narrowband hosting is limited to 8 players, broadband is limited to 16 players * Internet access required for internet play and is your responsibility * Microsoft Zone.com play needs IE4 or Netscape 4 for initial registration. 1.4 Where are the patches? There are no patches for the Windows version yet as of the release of this document. 1.5 How is MW4 different from MW3? Lots of differences. Primarily, the combat tempo is faster and there's a lot of movement. The default joystick config is different, with three of the buttons firing one weapon group each. There are more weapons and more mechs (7 never before seen). Bombast lasers, LAMS, machine gun arrays, etc. The mechlab is now very restricted, as the mechs now have hardpoint restrictions for each type of weapon. You get limited options to mount extra equipment (only one AMS or LAMS per mech). While this sounds bad, the mechs now actually have "personality". Some mechs are beam heavy, while others are ballistic- or missile- heavy. Clan mechs have "omni" hardpoints that can mount any type of weapons. Too many differences to list all here. 1.6 What game modes are there? Single player: campaign, training, instant action. Multiplayer: attrition, team attrition, capture the flag, team destruction, destruction, escort, king of the hill, steal the beacon 1.7 Is there a campaign tree? How about different endings? There is ONE branch near the very end where you need to make a big choice, and that affects the ending you get. I won't spoil the surprise yet, but you can read the campaign walkthrough. 2 Weapons There are basically three types of weapons, as explained in the manual. Instead of listing them all, I'll just go over the types and their general applications. 2.1 Cannons Your basic ballistic weapons, these are the AC's (5 and 10), Ultra AC's (2 and 5), LBX Scattershot (10 and 20), Gauss rifle (regular and light), and machine gun array (MGA). Some have clan versions which are lighter or have more extended range, but not all. Cannons are rather heavy even though their hardpoint is rather small. Get the Clan version if available. The cannons need ammo. While ammo is available, you can pump out a lot of firepower, but when you're out, you're left with nothing. 2.1.1 LBX Scattershot Cannon LBX cause a lot of damage at close range, esp. the LBX20s. In fact, the LBX20s are the only knock-down weapons that I've found. A good combo are multiple LBX20s. In a Daishi you can fit in three LBX20s (two in torso, one in the center omni rack). Together that's enough to knock down mechs up to 50 tons. 2.1.2 Machine Gun Array The machine gun arrays doesn't really do enough damage. It's like washing the floor with a toothbrush. Leave it home. Bring a heftier weapon. If you just have two tons to use up, add heatsinks or more speed or more armor. 2.1.3 Gauss Rifle Best sniper weapon is the gauss rifle. Use the zoom to get good shots at the center of the torso. Atlas can mount two gauss rifles: a clan regular and a light. A Mad Cat Mk II can mount FOUR, two Clan and two light. When all four hits. Ouch. Consider jump to top of buildings and turn off your sensors to be a sniper. 2.2 Energy Weapons Energy weapons are lasers, PPCs, and flamers. Lasers vary from small, medium, to large. Pulse lasers fires more shots, thus causing more damage, but also weighs more (usually double). PPC is half-ballistic and half-energy, as the shot itself travels like ballistic weapon but the weapon itself is energy-based and generates heat. There's also flamer (point-blank heat weapon) and bombast laser (discussed later). The Clan versions (if available) are either lighter or have longer range (sometimes both). The problem with energy weapons is they generate heat, so you can't fire them too much, or you'll overheat and shut down. You may be able to temporarily avoid the shutdown by doing either override or coolant flush. You will need to increase the amount of heatsinks to keep up with heat dissipation. You generally want the heat dissipation bar to be in the green or high yellow. 2.2.1 Lasers The lasers are your usual weapons. They are very precise. Medium lasers produce very good medium and close range firepower, and you can mount a lot of them if you have the hardpoints, and can afford the heat build-up. Large lasers have good range, but generate more heat and weighs a lot more. I don't find much use for the small laser at all. They simply don't do enough damage to be worth their weight. For the same weight you can probably mount a flamer. 2.2.2 PPC PPC is a good general-purpose weapon. Most non-mech targets need only about two shots to take out. It's also good for long range sniping. Zoom in and let them have it! 2.2.3 Bombast Laser Bombast laser can cause a lot of damage if you can learn its firing mechanism. I personally haven't quite got the knack for it yet. It's also relatively light for the damage it can cause. Bombast laser cycles VERY fast and it's VERY easy to overheat when you're using it. If you have those two weapons onboard, leave out any other beam weapons. You won't need them. 2.2.4 Flamer The flamer is a point-blank weapon that adds heat to the enemy mech. It takes two beam spaces, even though its weight is negligible (1 ton for IS, 0.5 ton for Clan) Add this to your point-blank assault. This is also great for city use. Flamer is useful in multiplayer games that involve flag or beacon running. In most cases, disabling the mech carrying the object (shut down) will cause an ejection of the object, allowing another to capture it. 2.3 Missile packs This family includes SRM (2, 4, or 6), MRM (10,20,30, or 40), LRM (5,10,15, or 20), and Streak SRM (2, 4, or 6). There's also the T- Bolt missile, NARC beacon, and flare launcher. The Clan version, if exist, is lighter than the Inner Sphere version. AMS can shoot down all missiles except the T-Bolt missile, but AMS can engage only a limited number of missiles at a time. So the bigger the launcher, the more shots will get through. There's also the Laser AMS (LAMS), which generates heat but is somewhat more effective. 2.3.1 SRMs and MRMs The SRMs and MRMs are not guided, so just fire them like rockets. The target needs to be still for you to get good hits. Fire just as the target comes to a stop for best effectiveness, or while the target is down. 2.3.2 LRMs The LRMs require a lock-on to get good hits. Once locked-on, the missile will seek the target, so they can be used even at point- blank range, but best used at a distance. LRMs also works as anti- air missiles, though it's somewhat of a waste to send a LRM20 salvo after one lousy chopper. If you have jumpjets, you can try a "pop-up" launch. Hide behind a hill, peek over just far enough to lock-on. Then jet straight up, launch, and land behind the hill again. Run somewhere else and repeat the performance. 2.3.3 Streak SRMs Streak SRMs seek their target automatically, so they're good if you can't get hits with the regular SRMs or MRMs. Just shoot and you should score some hits. 2.3.4 NARC Beacon The NARC beacon is difficult to use properly. Basically you hit an enemy mech, then all the subsequent lock-on missiles like LRM and Streak SRM will seek the beacon instead. You'll need to arrange for an OVERWHELMING salvo for the NARC beacon to be worth the trouble, and the 4 tons it take is not worth its advantages in my view. Maybe you can arrange for a smaller mech to run through the enemy formation planting NARC beacons, then have multiple Catapults and Mad Cats lob LRM salvoes. 2.3.5 T-Bolt The T-Bolt missile cannot be shot-down by anti-missile system, which makes them quite deadly, at 28 points per hit! It's just too bad it takes 15 tons to put in a launcher, and 3 missile hardpoints. However, if you can fit them in, they are quite deadly. 2.3.6 Flare Launcher The flare launcher is used for illumination at night. I personally don't fight at night so this to me is useless. If you want to try some night ops, give it a try. Don't forget light amp just in case. 2.4 Special Weapons Some weapons don't really belong in any of the above. 2.4.1 Long Tom Cannon The Long Tom cannon is basically a mech-mounted mortar. Its BIG shell causes a lot of splash damage, IF it lands on land. One or two shots can take down a building. It is VERY hard to aim, as it has very low muzzle velocity. You'll need to aim up in order to "lob" the shot. It does cause a lot of splash damage, but the number of shots is very limited. If the shot lands in water, nothing happens. Therefore don't use this in swampy maps. Using it in multiplayer is NOT recommended unless you're lobbing it past a hill, and even then, you'll need a "spotter". 2.4.2 Artillery Beacon Artillery beacon allows you to call in artillery on top of a target. While this is cool, it's not really practical since the beacon launcher weighs FIVE TONS, which can be used for far more productive weapons than arty of questionable value. Wonder if this is possible. Give the beacon/flag runner an arty beacon. As it runs for the escape, it shoots a beacon at a target ahead, timed so it'll be JUST out of the area when the salvo arrives, hopefully catching any chasers in the rain of steel. 2.4.3 High Explosive High Explosive is a kamikaze weapon found in multiplayer game only. Basically, you mount it, and you get close, and you blow it up. Consider mounting one or more in every mech, as this can help you take out ONE more mech when you're near death. 3 Your Enemies Know your enemies to best understand ways on how to defeat them. 3.1 Ground Vehicles On the ground, you'll see basically Bulldog tank, SRM carrier, LRM carrier, SKUD launcher, Vedette, and maybe Harasser. Ground vehicles usually appear in swarms. Individually they don't do much damage, though the Bulldog can be troublesome with those autocannons. Don't let them get behind you. Stay back and snipe them. You usually outrange them. The most dangerous is the LRM carrier, as they shoot salvoes at you from afar. Fortunately, one PPC shot is enough to take care of it. Zoom in and fire one shot each. Harasser and SRM carrier takes about one PPC each as well. Bulldog needs a little more than 2. Though two good hits from large laser will kill it. SKUD launcher takes only one shot. 3.2 Air Threats The only ones that will attack from the air are Night Shade fighters and the Peregrine attack choppers. Though you MAY see bombers. The fighters don't attack you in this game. The Peregrines don't do enough damage, as they carry puny SRM2s. However, they're so easy to kill. One shot from large lasers or PPC should take care of any of them. LRMs also works, though fighters are too fast for LRM lock- on. Zoom in and get good shots. If you got good guns, like Ultra 2's that goes out to 900m, you can use those also. 3.3 Naval Threats On swamp or coastal missions, you'll see Condor hovercrafts, Patrol Boats, and Destroyer. Condors and Patrol Boats are easy to kill. Most need only one PPC bolt each to go poof. You can use Ultra 2's if you want. If you feel like using the long tom, that explosion area is pretty good for killing things BEHIND the hill, but if the shot lands in the water it does NOT go boom, so it's not worth the trouble.. The destroyer is armed with lots of LRM launchers. It is quite well armored, and taking it down will take a lot of long-range dueling, as you can't get too close to it due to the beach. 3.4 Dropships You have several missions where you need to go after dropships. Usually the dropships are not moving, so you just take out the APUs around them (usually 3), then hit it a few more times. They will have a lot of defenders around them though. The final mission requires you to take on a Hrothgar dropship ready to take off. Just keep hitting it until it goes poof. This one shoots back though, so stay back a little. See the mission notes for tactics on dealing with it. 3.5 Light Mechs The light mechs in the game are Cougar (35t), Raven (35t), and Osiris (30t). The Cougar is more capable, with 2 LLAS and 2 LRM10's, plus some smaller lasers. Raven and Osiris are lightly armed and should not present a problem to you at all. Watch them as beacon or flag runners in mutiplayer games though, or NARC beacon / artillery beacon planters. 3.6 Medium Mechs The mediums are Bushwacker (55t), Shadow cat (45t), Chimera (40t), Hellspawn (45t), and Uziel (50t). Bushwacker is the heaviest medium. By the time you see them, you'll probably find heavier stuff. It's a very balanced mech but lacks an overwhelming "punch". Shadow Cat is pretty deadly if you fit in a gauss rifle, or use ONLY medium lasers and lots of heatsinks. It can move very fast and keep shooting. The LRM armed variants may also do the pop-up launch. Watch for them in that role. Hellspawn is more missile-reliant but you can fit in quite a few good lasers and keep the speed up. Uziel is pretty dangerous with 2 PPC's as default config. Consider it your primary threat when you see one. 3.7 Heavy Mechs Now there are a lot of choices here. There's Catapult (65t), Loki (65t), Mad Cat (75t), Nova Cat (70t), Thor (70t), Vulture (60t), Argus (60t), and Thanatos (75t). Catapult is meant as a fire support mech, as it looks like a small Mad Cat without the arms. Still, it's a pretty heavy mech. With jumpjets, it does the pop-up launch quite often. Its close- in firepower is quite low, so get in close and nail it. Loki and Thor are very close cousins, with only 5 tons difference. They are decent fighters in most ranges, and quite mobile. Mad Cat is probably one of the best mechs around, but the default config is too heat intensive, and they often shut down if you show them too many targets. Those LRMs are pretty dangerous. Nova Cat has too many energy weapons. They overheat constantly. When you face them, try using flamers on them to force them to shut down even more often. Vulture is a LRM fire support mech like Catapult, but it's capable of decent direct fire as well. You can think of it as a smaller Mad Cat, and it's quite deadly in that role. Argus has a weird mix of weapons, and doesn't seem to be too powerful. It is heavily armored though. Those LRMs and Ultras can ping you, but they can't kill you. Thanatos. How here's a good match for Mad Cat. Heavily armored (only Nova Cat boasts more default armor), and it has a good combo of weapons, though mostly ammo based (LBX20, MRM20). Stay out of flamer range and it can't do you much damage. 3.8 Assault Mechs The heaviest of the heavy, these are real killer mechs. They are Atlas (100t), Awesome (80t), Daishi (100t), Mauler (90t), and Mad Cat MkII (90t). Atlas has a lot of armor and slow movement in exchange for a LOT of weapons. Though personally those weapons don't do too much good as they're rather mismatched. It has a lot of hardpoints, but not contiguous. Awesome is the first assault mech you'll see/get, and the default config of 3 PPC is too heat intensive. They shut down quite a bit. Consider using the flamer on it. Daishi. The default weapon mix is a lot of stuff. The 4 LLAS is quite hefty. Mauler is quite heavy and the 4 Ultra AC/2 is a lot of firepower on paper, but it doesn't really do THAT much damage in one blow, giving you more time to kill it. Mad Cat Mk II. The gauss rifles are absolutely deadly. Great for sniping, and LRMs and other lasers are just a bonus. 4 Lancemate Management The pilots do grow in skill as you use them, and the more you use them, the better they get. However, they DO get stuck behind buildings and such, and takes quite a while to get to you, if you give them a chance. 4.1 Casey Nolan Casey is a thoroughly average pilot, though there's room for improvement. He's a good backup, but as you don't use him much, his skills will stay average. 4.2 Jen McQuarrie Jen's skills seems to be piloting, not much gunnery. She's the best pilot you got for a while, and good on sensors. Night-time she's average. 4.3 Jules Gonzales Jules is very good in gunnery, but not much on piloting. He's also good at night fighting. Give him the long-range weapons. 4.4 Terra Risner She joins you late (Op 5) after the rescue, but she's quite good in all categories. She tends to overheat due to her aggressiveness. Give her a heavy mech that leans toward ballistic weapons so she can last a while. 4.5 Damon Squire This guy joins you for one mission in Op 6 and disappears, but while he's on, he's good. He used to be one of Joanna's personal guards. 5 Your Mechs Here's some discussion on each of the mechs available, as well as some recommended configs for your mechs. 5.1 Light Mechs Light mechs don't do enough damage, and are suitable really only for recon due to their high speed. Against heavier mechs, their only hope is hit-and-run. They are great for flag/beacon running in mutiplayer games, and for NARC and/or arty beacon planting. 5.1.1 Cougar Default cougar has too many weapons too remain at long range. Drop the small laser and the medium laser, and probably the Beagle probe as well. Replace with more heatsinks or speed. Use the superior speed to keep the range open and snipe at the enemy with the lasers and LRMs. 5.1.2 Raven The fact hat Raven comes with a NARC beacon should clue you in to the purpose of the mech: NARC plant. It has Beagle probe and and ECM to make sure it can get out from under the enemy barrage. Consider adding jumpjets on it. 18.104.22.168 Raven Runner Raven with ECM and max engines is a great mech to play multiplayer "steal the beacon". Just watch out for those heavy "guard" mechs with the knock-down weapons. If you're down, you can't run. Remember to include jumpjets. 22.214.171.124 Raven Divine Wind (as in kamikaze) NARC beacon, artillery beacon, and high explosives. Enough said. Run around planting NARC beacons on unsuspecting victims. If caught. Hit the high explosives and take the enemies out with you! 5.1.3 Osiris Even faster than the Raven, and even LESS armed, why use it? Drop the MGA and most of the weapons. Put NARC beacon and ECM on it for survivability. 5.2 Medium Mechs Consider using medium mechs as beacon runners. Uziel and Shadow Cat are harder to knock down than the light mechs, and they CAN be modified to achieve respectable speed and include jumpjets. 5.2.1 Bushwacker A very "balanced" mech, it also means it's good at nothing, though it's probably the heaviest mech you have in a while until you get the Catapult. 5.2.2 Shadow Cat A good balance of speed and weapons, the default has config has too many weapons. Try to squeeze in a light gauss rifle in there and it'll serve you well. 5.2.3 Chimera Why use a MRM20? The range increase from SRM is not really worth the weight. Drop the MGA and try to shoehorn a T-Bolt or LRM in there. 5.2.4 Hellspawn Sort of light at 2 LRM10's and 3 MPLAS, it has ECM, it's not THAT dangerous unless you ignore the LRM salvoes. Replace with Clan weapons ASAP for more weapons. 5.2.5 Uziel Now this one is fun. Two PPC's is a lot of gun. Forget the MGAs, as they're nearly useless. Replace with Streak SRM6 ASAP. Drop the MGAs and add more heatsinks or speed. 5.3 Heavy Mechs The workhorse mechs, they can move at a "decent" clip while packing more firepower. 5.3.1 Catapult Artillery support vehicle, it relies upon its missiles to do damage, not the other weapons. You may as well drop the lasers all together. 126.96.36.199 Catapult Artillery Use Clan LRM racks to fit in more LRMs than you would normally carry, and keep the jumpjets. Cut down the lasers if you have to. 188.8.131.52 Catapult Flanker Instead of LRM racks, this one uses 4 Streak SRM6 racks, and forget the lasers, all speed and jumpjets. Get in and make an oblique pass, shoot the missiles, run out of range. 5.3.2 Loki The default config is nearly ideal, as it's mainly a medium range combat mech, ideal for city fighting. Combination of MLAS, MPLAS, LBX10, and Streak SRM6s are even deadly point-blank, and the Guardian ECM will ensure it get away for more shots. Consider dropping the BAP for more heatsinks. 5.3.3 Mad Cat Ah, the infamous Timberwolf / Mad Cat. The default config has too many weapons, IMHO. I'd consider dropping the MGAs for more heatsinks, and switch some of the lasers to pulse lasers. If you want more shock effect, replace the LLAS/MLAS combo with ER PPC instead. 5.3.4 Nova Cat Nice mech for 70 tons, as it is VERY heavily armored and armed, but it overheats too fast. Drop the smaller weapons and one of the ER LLAS for more heatsinks. Separate the weapons into separate groups, and learn to fire them separately. One possible variant is fill up the hardpoints with ONLY ER MLAS, and as many heatsinks as you can fit. Use groups of 3 or 4 each. 5.3.5 Thor The big cousin of the Loki, the default mix is NOT the optimal mix. The GOOD mix is the LBX and a PPC, which is where the name came from. That mix is quite devastating at any rank. Add some missiles and it's good. The default mix doesn't have enough shock effect. 5.3.6 Vulture Vulture can be thought of as a smaller version of Mad Cat, and it plays that way also, with LRM20s and good mix of lasers. It is designed for long-range confrontations and fire support, though with those lasers it works at closer ranges as well. 5.3.7 Argus While rather balanced, it's one of those "good at nothing" designs. Replace the Ultra 5's with a LBX20 and drop the MGA may make more sense. 5.3.8 Thanatos The default mix is designed for mainly medium and close range combat. The MRM40 should be replaced with T-Bolt ASAP, and flamers with medium lasers for a "longer" punch. 5.4 Assault Mechs There are your workhorses. While they don't kill light mechs in one salvo, they do come pretty close (two salvoes to be exact). 5.4.1 Atlas The quintessential assault mech, Atlas is still a "jack-of-all- trades" design that lacks enough hard points to deliver true knock-out punches. 184.108.40.206 Sniper Atlas Atlas, speed at one notch above minimum, armor nearly maxed, ferro-fibrous. One ER PPC, one PPC, one Clan Gauss Rifle with extra ammo, one LIGHT Gauss rifle with extra ammo. The reason for the MISMATCHED set of PPCs is they recycle at different rates, and thus cuts down on heat built-up. You can fire all weapons as fast as the weapons recycle. Only need two weapon groups. You can probably squeeze in some missiles if you want. A variant of this is 2 ER LLAS, and 3 light gauss rifles. 220.127.116.11 Pyro/Shotgun Atlas Optimized for urban combat, fit in some LBX20's, Streak SRM6s, and flamers. LBX20's to knock down the mech, flamers and Streak6's to keep them down for the count. 5.4.2 Awesome A very decent IS design, the SRM2s are useless, and with 3 PPCs overheating is a problem. A Clan Streak SRM6 would be a good replacement. 18.104.22.168 Awesome Zapper The default config of 3 PPC for the Awesome is a bit too heat intensive. To turn it into a more short-range fighter, remove the arm PPC, and replace with 2 medium lasers. Remove the two pulse lasers on the other arm and replace with 2 medium lasers. Replace SRM2s with SRM6s. Add heatsinks to fill out the difference. When Clan weapons become available, replace SRM6 with Streak SRM6, PPC with ER PPC, and so on, and add even more heatsinks. 5.4.3 Daishi Daishi has far too many weapons in the default config, though those four LLAS can be quite deadly. The Ultra5s and MGAs are nearly useless, with very little "punch". Consider replacing them with LBX. 22.214.171.124 Shotgun Daishi Daishi with 25 percent speed, no heatsinks, 2 large lasers (one in each arm), and 3 LBX20's, each with one extra reload. Add one Streak SRM6 pack for backup. This combo will knock lighter mechs (up to even Shadow Cats) to the ground. Aim for the cockpit and you can kill a mech in TWO SHOTS. The LLAS can be used for sniping if you want to stay out of range. If you can't stay open, then charge in to 300 m and open up with the three shotguns. 5.4.4 Mauler The default config relies on the Ultra2s for the firepower, which is not that great. 126.96.36.199 Shotgun Mauler Here's a general purpose Mauler config: 2 Clan LBX20s with 1 extra ammo each in torso. Two ER MLAS in arm, add Streak SRM6 or Clan LRM10's to taste. Don't need extra heatsinks at all. Add the rest in armor and speed. 5.4.5 Mad Cat Mk. II Interesting design, as Clan gauss rifle is a real pinpoint hitter. It's quite "punch-y" as is. Though the medium pulse lasers are a little "lacking" in long range power. 188.8.131.52 Mad Cat Mk II Sharpshooter One devastating config for Mad Cat Mk. II is cram in FOUR different gauss rifles, 2 Clan that's built-in, and 2 more IS Light gauss rifles, as they fit in the center racks. You'll need to remove all the other weapons, as well as a little armor or the jumpjets to fit them in. When all four bolts hit at the same time. If this is too much of a "boat" for your taste, Put LLAS in the torso instead of the two IS light gauss rifles, and add the LRM10's back. 6 `Mech Tactics `Mech combat, as all combats, have specific tactics, but some should already be obvious to you. 6.1 Concentrate Firepower One mech never last long against superior numbers of equivalent mechs. Just look at the intro movie. If you have two, three, even four mechs firing upon the same target, it'll be toast very quickly. It also seem to force the enemy to spread the damage around instead of gunning for you personally all the time (except Castro's lance, but that's another story). 6.2 Keep Moving Moving target is harder to hit, even for the AI. Moving and sudden change of direction can also prevent easy hits from the unguided missiles like SRMs and MRMs. It won't save you from the seeking missiles (Streak LRMs, and T-bolt), but less damage is less damage. 6.3 Torso-Twist / Circle of Death Mechs don't side-step like the Quake's circle-strafing. However, most mechs can torso-twist, which allows you to point the upper body toward the enemy while the mech head in a different direction. This effectively allows the "circle-of-death", which means you walk in a circle around the target (moving at about 70% speed), torso twisted all the way left or right, facing the enemy, and keep pouring in fire while moving. 6.4 Go for Turret Control Towers In a base covered by calliopes or turrets, there is probably a turret control tower. If you take it out, the turrets will go inactive. This is much easier than taking on each of the turrets individually. The calliopes are well armored. 6.5 Go for the Cockpit If you can, aim for the cockpit. Killing the pilot is the quickest way to kill a mech, now that "legging" the mech is much more difficult if not impossible. A heavy dose of LBX20 at point- blank range will reduce armor to scrap. Another good salvo and the mech is toast. 6.6 Passive Sensors Sometimes Sometimes, you may not want to attract attention to yourself, esp. if you're a sniper `mech. Move around on passive sensors only to avoid drawing attention to yourself. Passive sensors mode is also good for setting ambushes. You won't be visible until you're within 250 feet, even less if you actually shut down. 6.7 Heat Management Remember that there are additional ways to dissipate excess heat. If there's bodies of water nearby (swamp, mountain lakes, etc.) then stay inside to stay cool. Fighting at night also helps. If it's an emergency, you can try the coolant flush, which does an emergency vent of the coolant. It cools you down a lot, but you don't have that much left, so use in emergencies only. If you just need to keep moving and not shooting, you can OVERRIDE the shutdown. 7 Campaign Walkthru There are two different endings (not counting your death), depending on that "final choice" near the end. 7.1 Operation 1 You've just landed on the Kentares IV's moon as the initial strike against the Steiner hold on the planet. You're vastly outnumbered, so this is meant mainly as a guerilla action. You can't command any one yet, even if there are other mechs with you. 7.1.1 Op 1, Mission 1 Destroy Comm Array Primary Objective: Take out the comm array at the nav point, specifically the 3 HPG antennas. This will cripple Steiner coordination. Secondary Objective: Take out any escaping vehicles You are in a Shadow Cat, no weapons yet to reconfigure. You'll be dropped with 2 Cougars. Mission Summary: There are no mobile defenders except some SRM carriers. There are some turrets around the base, but those are easy to take out. Watch for escaping vehicles. When the escaping vehicles are toast, feel free to cook any turrets in the area, then the three antennas, and you're done. If you're lucky, you'll capture an Uziel on this mission, which will be your heaviest mech for a while. 7.1.2 Op 1, Mission 2 Destroy SKUD Convoys Take out the SKUD launcher convoys as you follow the nav points around the path. This will consolidate our position. Expect mech escorts. Primary: Take out the SKUD launcher convoys as you follow the nav points around the path. This will consolidate our position. Expect mech escorts. If you got the Uziel, take it. Otherwise keep the Shadowcat. Jules Gonzalez will join you in a Cougar. Nothing fancy, just destroy everything. There are two convoys, each with one SKUD launcher, several ammo carriers, 2-3 SRM carriers, some Swiftwind scouts, and 1 Osiris mech as escort. Take out the mech first, then the SRM carriers. The smaller vehicles you can just "stomp" (i.e. walk over it). The other vehicles don't shoot back so they are easy to destroy. If you're in the Uziel, use PPC's to snipe. Be careful around the ammo carriers, as those explode pretty hard. Don't get too close. Try to get the mechs next to them to blow them up. 7.1.3 Op 1, Mission 3 Dropship Hunt Destroy all dropships at the Steiner base. This will cripple their operations. Primary: Destroy all three dropships at the Steiner base. Those dropships have heavy weapons, but they are not powered yet. Take out the three APUs next to each dropship to delay power-up. Expect mechs and other mobile threats. Take the heaviest mech you have, probably the Uziel. You'll have some friendly Hellspawns following you in. Nothing fancy here, go in and blast those APUs first. Two shots from the PPC's should take out each one. Keep running around, taking out the APUs and some of the defenders. After the APUs are gone, you can concentrate on the mech defenders. Then let your friends take on the turrets while you take out the dropships. When you take out all three, you win. 7.1.4 Op 1, Mission 4 Base Defense Protect the dropship as we prepare to shift operations to Kentares proper. Sir Peter will take off first. Primary: protect the APUs powering your dropship Secondary: destroy all attackers This is probably your toughest fight so far, as enemies attack from all directions. Keep your Uziel, as you need some long-range firepower, and those PPCs are very handy. Run really fast toward the threats. Kill them with long range PPC fire. There are two other mechs around the perimeter keeping the enemy busy. Attackers include 2 Hellspawns, 2 Osirises, 3 Bulldogs, 3 SRM Carriers, and 3 LRM Carriers. There are two APUs next to your dropship you need to protect, and the main threat to them will come from the LRMs. Snipe those out first with your PPCs, ignoring all other threats. Then engage any other threat you come across. You can let one of the APUs get destroyed, as the dropship will send out another one, but no more than that! Once you take out all the attackers, you win. 7.2 Operation 2 You've arrived in the northern polar region. It's time to start operations on the ground. 7.2.1 Op 2, Mission 1 Recon Area You're being hot dropped into the area to secure an area for the dropship to land. Primary: explore nav Alpha, Beta, and Gamma Secondary: destroy all enemies encountered You get your first lancemate. You can pick Casey or Jen. Jen is the better of the two, so bring her along. Give her something pretty heavy, like Shadow Cat or Hellspawn. Keep Uziel for yourself. You'll see multiple Peregrine choppers as you hit the first nav point then 2 Ravens and a Bulldog as you come up to an outpost at the second Nav point. After that 2+3 Bulldogs, a turret, then 3 more Bulldogs at the last nav point. Take them all out and you're done. 7.2.2 Op 2, Mission 2 Raid Depot Need supplies, so we're raiding this depot. There may be some mechs to capture here. Primary: Destroy all defenders Primary: Destroy comm base Primary: Convoy must reach warehouse 1, 2, and 3 Follow the nav points again, but try to do it all in passive sensors. Take out the comm base when you see it, then continue to the base. This is probably the toughest fight so far, as you're going up against some heavier mechs, namely Catapults and Hellspawns, and multiple choppers and tanks. You'll be pretty beaten up at the end, but it's a standard kill-everything scenario. You'll probably capture a Catapult here. 7.2.3 Op 2, Mission 3 Escort Techs Jules is pinned down with the techs. Sir Peter tried to draw the chasers off, and they need some escorts to get away. Primary: Relieve tech convoy, then escort the techs to safety to the south across the bridge. Primary: Blow up the bridge after everybody is across. You should keep the heaviest mech you have, though I personally don't like Catapult that much. Give it to Jen, and keep Uziel for yourself. As you approach the tech's nav point (nav alpha), you'll run into Uziels and Hellspawns, and 3 Bulldogs. You'll see 4 turrets blocking your way to the techs. Blow them up. When you find the techs (Jules in a Shadow Cat as escort) in the corner of the map, another Uziel will attack. As they start moving, 2 Hellspawns will attack as well. There's a long way to go, but the enemies are pretty far away so you can run really fast and catch them before they get into range. Multiple SRM carriers will attack at about the half-way point. Finally, an Osiris will chase as you get to the bridge, but with 3 mechs shooting it should be no problem. After everybody cross the bridge, blow it up, and that's it. 7.2.4 Op 2, Mission 4 Capture Base Sir Peter did not survive. To avenge him, we're taking down the Steiner base. Primary Objective: clean out the defenders Secondary Objective: defend the techs until they capture the base Your job is to charge in, take care of all the defenders (Cougar and Bushwacker), and 2 turrets and 3 SRM Carriers. The 3 SRM Carriers are easy as they're in front of you. Then the two mechs charge in. Concentrate on the Bushwacker first, and take the turret when you can. Then head for the back of the base and take out the TALL turret control tower (ignore the calliopes, they'll go down when the control tower goes poof, and you need them for defense later). REMEMBER, do NOT touch the control center. Take down the TURRET CONTROL TOWER. Once it's gone (or you took out one of the calliopes), the tech will come on. The tower is taller and thinner, and to the left of the satellite control center when you're heading there. Then send your lancemates after the two guarding Uziels. The techs will head in as soon as one of the calliopes are destroyed or the turret control tower is down. It'll take them a while (about a minute or two) to arrive, and your mechs will keep the Uziels away. Immediately head off to the base to ESE, and you should see 4 LRM launchers there sitting still. Nail them with long range PPC fire. If you don't, they'll come after you and the satellite control center. So nail them now. Now head back north. Just north of the sat control you'll see hangars with 2 Peregrine attack choppers on the ground. Take them out from a distance. If you don't, they'll join in when the mechs attack, then it gets really messy! Kill them now. Now you just need to wait for the mechs to attack. Order repairs if there's time. There's a repair hangar there. Your techs should gain control of the two calliopes, and those are great for additional firepower. Then it's just a matter of defending your site against 2 Cougars and 2 Argus from one direction, then 2 more Cougars from the other direction. With 3 relatively fresh mechs (you did repair yourself, right?) and 2 calliopes, the fight should be easy. When you take them all out, you win! 7.3 Operation 3 We're trying to find that other surviving Steiner dropship to cripple their operations permanently. 7.3.1 Op 3, Mission 1 Sweep and Destroy Scouts are out searching for the Steiner patrols, great for defeat in detail. Primary: Wait for scouts to report Primary: Take out the mechs at nav alpha, nav beta, nav gamma, Primary: Check out Delta for the missing scout Take the heaviest mechs you got, as there's lots of room for long- range weapon deployment. You'll find 2 Cougars near nav Alpha, 2 Osiris and 1 Raven at nav Beta, Osiris and Cougar at nav Gamma, and 2 Vultures (dangerous!) at nav Delta. Take them all out, and you win! Jumping into the lake if you overheat. 7.3.2 Op 3, Mission 2 Capture Supply Convoy We're going after this supply convoy. Primary: Destroy escorts Secondary: Destroy all Steiner forces Chasing down the supply convoy is gone to require a fast mech. If you prefer heavy mechs, consider turning back to cut through that "pass" to the north. Try not to blow up a mech right next to one of the cargo carriers. That may take the cargo carrier out as well! When you catch up, you'll run into 2 Cougars, a Bulldog, all trying to delay you. Argus and Vulture will try to stay with the convoy, but if you get close they'll go after you. There's one MORE Bulldog leading the convoy. Take that out, and you got the convoy, even if you haven't taken out all the mech escorts. With three heavy mechs, this should be easy. 7.3.3 Op 3, Mission 3 Destroy Dropship We found that surviving dropship. Take it out. Primary: Locate and destroy Steiner dropship The dropship is actually NOT that heavily defended, except for the Mauler as a surprise. You can try the artillery beacon, but you can do the mission without it. Just head east, then northeast and follow the "road". You'll run into multiple Arguses, then a Mauler, escorted by multiple Bulldogs (at least 4), and several turrets. The dropship has 3 APUs nearby. As in the earlier mission, take out the APUs first to prevent the dropship from powering up. Then take care of the defenders and finally the dropship itself. 7.4 Operation 4 We're in the desert, and heat will be a factor. Consider using reactive armor, as most mechs will be using ballistic weapons to minimize heat buildup. You'll want your mech to be as "green" in heat dissipation bar as possible. Use more ballistic or missile weapons. 7.4.1 Op 4, Mission 1 Raid Base We're raiding a Steiner base for supplies. Resistance will take cargo carriers into the Steiner base after we neutralize the defenders. They'll have some tanks and Vedettes to take on the turrets. We take care of the mechs. Primary: Escort convoy as they go through the 3 nav points The base doesn't have much inside, just turrets and a few mechs (Cougar? Hellspawn?). Run in there and take them all out. When nav Alpha is reached, 4 mechs (Shadow Cat, Chimera, and 2 Hellspawns?) will attack. When nav Gamma is reached, 4 more mechs will attack (Vulture, Chimera, and 2 Hellspawns?). Take them all out and you win. 7.4.2 Op 4, Mission 2 Defense Base You get a third lancemate on this mission, and you'll probably have to use Casey, as you haven't found any one better yet (not until Op 5, Mission 1 any way). Primary: Relieve friendlies at nav Alpha Primary: Defend base at nav Beta Primary: Destroy guerilla mechs You are to relieve the friendly forces at nav alpha, then protect the base at nav beta. Run for nav alpha ASAP, tell your lancemates to go there. Shoot the 3 Peregrines that pops up, but don't slow down. You'll find 2 Shadow Cats and an Uziel around nav alpha. Those Shadow Cats hide behind a hill, pop up with jumpjets, then fire LRMs while in the air. These Shadowcats will run really far and really fast, then circle around. Take them all out, and watch the calliopes at nav alpha take out the approaching bombers, as you run for nav Beta. Tell your lancemates to head there too. You'll probably notice two more Shadow Cats running toward your base at nav beta. Just get there ASAP, even if the Shadow Cats outrun you. There's Cougar and other defenders in the base to delay them for you. As you take care of the Shadow Cats, another lance will attack: Vulture, 2 Uziels, and a Cougar. Take them out too and you're done. There's a MFB on the base so you can order repairs if you have time, as the second lance don't show up until that Shadow Cat is taken care of. 7.4.3 Op 4, Mission 3 Capture Barges Capture the barges by destroying all the escorts (boats and mechs), then walk near each one. Capturing all six barges is possible. Primary: Capture 4 out of 6 barges Primary: Destroy all defenders Secondary: Capture all 6 barges. Don't use LRMs near the barges! If you get all 6 barges you get a bonus. If you use LRMs you may destroy one of the barges due to splash damage. You'll be facing 10 patrol boats (maybe more?), 4 Peregrines (that pop up behind rocks as you travel up the river). You'll also run into 3 Argus and 1 Loki. As you'll be wading in water, heat should not be a factor. As noted, try not to use LRMs unless you're SURE the target is not next to a barge. Tell your lancemates to follow you, then when you see the enemy ships, engage at will. They'll mop up for you. When you see mechs, concentrate your fire upon one mech at a time, and add your own. When all defenders are gone, just walk up next to each of the surviving barges to capture them. 7.4.4 Op 4, Mission 4 Destroy Factory Destroy three munitions plant in the city. Shepherd in a Swiftwind scout will be your guide. Weather is extremely foggy, and the visibility is extremely poor. Secondary: Link up with local guide Shepherd Primary: Destroy munitions plant 1, 2, and 3 This one is not that hard, as you just follow the nav points and kill anything else that moves. You'll run into 2 Shadow Cats and 6 Bulldogs at plant 1, Nova Cat and Hellspawn at plant 2, Awesome, Hellspawn, and 3 Bulldogs at plant 3. Each plant is also surrounded by at least 2, probably 4 "guard tower" armed with large pulse lasers, though they are easy to blow up. 7.4.5 Op 4, Mission 5 Capture Convoy James Qulan is about to execute the prisoners, so you need to get to them before they do. Primary: Destroy air defense base at nav Zeta (to protect the chopper flight) Primary: Destroy convoy escorts Secondary: Break contact Just one Uziel protecting nav Zeta, so take out the base (tower and radar). Then head for the convoy, and take out all the convoy defenders (multiple Bulldogs and Cougars). Once you got them, cut through the mountains and get to the pickup point FIRST. Tell your lancemates to guard the convoy (pick a vehicle and issue "Defend my target") There should be a Vulture in the distance, and it may get closer. Send your lancemates after it, as you continue to that spot. Soon, someone will power up: 2 Uziels. Kill them (you ARE in a much heavier mech, right?) Your three lancemates should take care of the Vulture with no problem. When the convoy arrives and the choppers land and take off, you're done. 7.4.6 Op 4, Mission 6 Liberate Camp We've saved some of the prisoners, but it's time to get the rest of them. We can use the manpower too. Primary: Link up with Resistance mechs (Uziels and Shadowcats) Secondary: Destroy all defenders Primary: Destroy the two guard towers next to each of the prisoner compounds 1, 2, 3, and 4 You're rescued Terra Risner, who's a better pilot than Casey Nolan, so use her. When you start, head along the edge of the map and get to the friendlies. You'll run into 3 Peregrines, just get them. As you rendevous, you may run into 2 Cougars. Kill them. Then you'll see a LOT of turrets, but by now you'll know to go after the control towers. 2 Vultures and 2 Catapults will attack. Take care of them. When you take out all the towers, James Qulan and his command lance drops in. Mad Cat and 3 Vultures. They should be no problem for you though. Take out the Mad Cat first, concentrate firepower to kill one at a time. 7.5 Operation 5 The city of Vale has been marked as a target for retribution, and you must protect the city while the civilians are evacuated out to sea. 7.5.1 Op 5, Mission 1 Destroy Bombers Primary: Destroy all eight bombers Primary: Destroy the control tower Secondary: Destroy all defenders Take the heavy `mechs. You'll run into a LOT of enemies, as there are missile towers and gunboats and everywhere. Just stand at the two runways' intersection (the southeast one), and cook the eight bombers as they approach for take-off. You'll run into 3 Shadow Cats, 3 Vultures, and one Nova Cat as the defenders. You may see some patrol boats, Bulldogs, and Harassers as well. When you take them all out, you've won. Remember to destroy the tower. 7.5.2 Op 5, Mission 2 Destroy Patrols Standard sweep mission, destroy all enemies encountered. You're combing the swamps, wiping out all the patrol boats and Harasser hovercrafts. There are four groups to take out. Primary: Destroy all four hovercraft groups. The hovercrafts are easy to kill individually. Best way is find a tall "hill" and snipe them with the long range PPCs. Close-in, use Streak SRMs or autocannons. When you destroy the third group, you'll get a quick glimpse of a Steiner mech. Duncan Burke? When you take out all four groups, Duncan Burke shows up in a Thor. And no help will reach you in time, it's a one-on-one duel. So try to preserve yourself in the fights. 7.5.3 Op 5, Mission 3 Defend Exodus The evacuation is almost done, but time is running out. The patrol boats have sneaked through, and not just one but TWO destroyers are heading to the Veil coast, and if they shoot the refugee ships. Primary: Defend refugee ships until they reach open sea Secondary: destroy all nearby enemy units Take long range weapons, like LRMs, gauss rifles, ER LLAS, PPCs, etc. There are four mechs in the city you need to take out: 2 Nova Cats and 2 Awesomes. After that, jump to the dock and start shooting the patrol boats (about six of them). The patrol boats are easy to kill with one PPC shot each. You'll also have to take out several Night Shade fighters. Then the destroyers come in. The destroyers aren't that tough, it just takes a lot of shots to sink them. They have a lot of LRMs. As you're ankle deep in water, heat is not a problem. Bring PPC's and ER LLAS, and maybe some gauss rifles. Take them out, wait for the boats to depart, and you win! 7.6 Operation 6 Urban fighting. Range is short, and fighting will be quick and brutal. Heavy LBX rule! 7.6.1 Op 6, Mission 1 Recon In Force Cleaning up the city for the Resistance. Primary: Clear all five nav points (nav Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta, Epsilon) Standard sweep mission, wipe out everything you encounter, though there are five nav points to go through. Preserve ammo and armor is critical. You should have a 100-tonner, or at least Awesome/Mauler. Take the heaviest mech you got. At nav Alpha you'll see Awesome, Mad Cat, and several turrets. You may notice 2 Argus in the distance. They're actually nav Gamma's guards. Ignore the Arguses. Kill the Mad Cat and the turrets. Continue to nav Beta, where you'll run into 2 SRM Carriers and 3 Bulldogs. At Gamma, you encounter 2 Arguses, more Bulldogs, and 2 turrets. At Delta, you see 2 Bulldogs and 2 Awesomes. Finally, at Epsilon, you see an Atlas, 3 SRM Carriers, and more turrets. 7.6.2 Op 6, Mission 2 Rescue Pilots Need to rescue some mech pilots holed up in one of the parking garages, and there's five in the area. Check every one. A chopper will be dispatched once you found them, but enemy mechs may attack once they see the signal. Primary: Locate pilots Primary: Defend parking garage until the chopper is loaded Primary: Defend the chopper until it departs the map This mission you run alone. The trick in this mission is do NOT go to nav Alpha until the very end. Instead, go to all the OTHER nav points and wipe out the opposition (Vultures, Shadow Cats, and Cougars). THEN come back to Nav Alpha. As there's no more enemies to bother the rescue, just wait for the chopper to land. Don't stand in the landing spot! One Vulture patrols near Alpha. Remember NOT to go there first! Go to Epsilon first. Then just navigate to the closest NAV point as you come BACK to nav Alpha. Nav Alpha has a Cougar and a Shadow Cat. Nav Beta has a Cougar and a Shadow Cat as well. Nav Gamma has just a Cougar. Nav Delta has just a Shadow Cat Nav Epsilon has a Thor. 7.6.3 Op 6, Mission 3 Destroy Base Steiner forces are holed up at the University. Take out the comm center nearby so they don't know we're coming, then the nearby power station to disable the turrets. Finally, destroy the defenders and their base. Primary: Destroy all units protecting the University base Secondary: Destroy the comm center (gamma) Secondary: Destroy the power station powering the defensive turrets (Beta) A Mad Cat Mk. II guards Nav Gamma. You'll probably salvage it. Nav Beta has Vulture, Uziel, and 2 Bulldogs. Finally, at Alpha, you'll see 3 Uziels, 2 Vultures, and 3 Bulldogs. 7.6.4 Op 6, Mission 4 Rescue Sister You have a choice here, Ian Dresari. The path you choose here will determine which ending you get, and how you'll be viewed. Choose between 4 or 5. You chose to go after your sister instead of the mechs. It's your decision. Primary: Locate your sister's command track (could be 1, 2, or 3, but actually 3) Primary: Escort the ambulance out of combat area You basically have to go through the various nav points, take out all defenders. When you reach the ambulance, you are to escort them to the "exit" of the map. What's nice, this hospital will "follow" you instead of you trying to chase it down. Make sure you don't step on it! Proper walkthrough will be included later. 7.6.5 Op 6, Mission 5 Raid Depot You have a choice here, Ian Dresari. The path you choose here will determine which ending you get, and how you'll be viewed. Choose between 4 or 5. You chose to go after the heavy mechs buried in a hidden base instead of rescuing your sister. Primary Objective: Find the weapons cache. Primary Objective: Check All 3 Bunkers (shoot the doors) Primary Objective: Defeat Castro and her command lance. As mission starts, you immediately run into "red lance", which is lead by a Mad Cat Mk. II and 3 Lokis. Take them all out (as they try to concentrate on you). Slowly approach nav Alpha and take out the Calliopes and the Bulldogs surrounding the place. Then take a shot at the door. The calliopes can be taken out by either long range LLAS sniping (ER LLAS would help), or use the cover of buildings to get close in and unload LBX shots in its face. Total of 4 calliopes and 4 Bulldogs guard beta. Find a good spot to snipe the calliopes, as you don't really want to fight them in the open. When you take a shot at the door, the "blue lance" comes to play, and this one is lead by a Mad Cat Mk II again, with 3 Mad Cats to follow. If you have the 3xLBX20 option, you should kill those in no time. In all cases, preserve your mech is the priority. As you get close to nav Gamma, Castro shows up in a Daishi and tries to finish you herself. Find an open spot where all your mechs can engage. Just send all the lancemates after her while stay out of reach of the calliopes. When she's gone, the supplies and mechs are yours. You don't gain too much though. Honestly, the only thing you'll really gain here is a Daishi (which you probably already salvaged once before). It's not absolutely necessary for your campaign. 7.6.6 Op 6, Mission 6 End Game Primary: Destroy all "elite lance" Steiner guards Primary: Destroy turret power generator at nav Beta Primary: Prevent Roland's dropship from escaping Keep your mechs together, and concentrate firepower on one mech at a time. Keep yourself relatively undamaged until the very end. At nav Alpha, you'll see a Nova Cat and Mad Cat MKII, but they are patrolling the gate and they'll pass you by. Don't worry about them. As you head into the gate and head up to nav Beta, a Daishi and Mad Cat Mk II from nav Delta will start jogging down. Keep your lancemates together and concentrate fire while you head up to nav Beta and take out the generator. Rest of the lance should appear shortly. When you arrive at nav Beta, you will wake up the two Thors sitting there. If you don't want to do that, head to Beta from that entrance in the WEST, then you can take on one Thor at a time. And get in a couple uncontested shots. Kill the generator quickly before the turrets come back up. By this time, all the Nova Cats and Mad Cat Mk II's will be attacking one or two at a time (3 each?), but it's mainly just a matter of concentrating your firepower on one mech at a time and kill one at a time. The Nova Cats should overheat constantly and should be no problem to your combined firepower. The Mad Cat Mk IIs and Thors should be your primary targets. Once the odds are even, it's time to cook the dropship. That dropship is on a timer to lift off soon. You can hit the dropship without it hitting back by shooting it from the top of the plateau, and not get too close to the edge. Just shoot at the top. It'll shoot back if you get too close. Order everybody to attack if there are no enemies left. You can keep hitting it as it lifts off. As long as you kill it before it escapes... Primary: Kill William Dresari, the usurper. Then it's on to the final fight. The Daishi stays pretty far back but walks in, so if you have gauss rifle and PPCs you can keep plugging away with zoom mode. Keep firing long range, then let them have it at close range. If you're not badly damaged, you should kill it with no problem. Good luck! 7.7 The End Well, looks like you won. Did your sister survive? If she did, she's the duchess, and you're off fighting Steiner elsewhere. If she did not, then you're the duke, but Carl hates your guts. 8 Multiplayer Multiplayer nowadays is a very important part of any game, and MW4 is designed with a LOT of multiplayer action in mind. Here's some netiquettes and observations you should heed before joining the games. 8.1 Some general multiplayer observations Go for alpha strikes. While in the single-player campaign you would engage enemy mechs at different ranges using a wide variety of weapons, in net play you want an OVERWHELMING single strike, aimed at ONE part of the mech for the quickest kill. Missiles are generally useless in multiplayer except for softening up certain parts for later pinpoint attacks by lasers, PPCs, or gauss rifles. Therefore bring only LRMs, if the range supports it. Otherwise bring Streak SRM6s for close range fighting. A LOT of players prefer gauss rifle for a good reason: they deliver a lot of damage, they generate virtually no heat, and by the time you're used up you're probably dead and respawned. Same goes for the LBX20, except those don't have gauss' range. Some games are known to outlaw class gauss rifles, for good reasons. If you have jumpjets, use them! Firing while jumpjeting is difficult, but it makes you that much harder a target. In urban maps, jump on top of buildings and snipe from there. Almost EVERYBODY play attrition or destruction on the Zone. There's maybe one or two King of the Hill or Capture the Flag, virtually no Escort or Steal the Beacon. 8.2 A note about "boat mechs" Use of "boat mechs" are frowned upon on some servers. A "boat mech" is a mech that's configured with only ONE type of weapons. I.e. only missiles, only lasers, only AC's, etc. This is an exploitation of Clan omni-rack rules. A mech that has ONLY energy weapons like the Nova Cat is technically a boat mech by design, but since you're not exploiting omni racks it's not a boat mech in spirit. The history of the term is a little murky. Likely, the term came from Star Fleet Battles, a boardgame like Battletech. One of the best configurations is known as an "Orion Phaser Boat". Orions are similar to the Clans in Battletech. Their ships have "option mounts" that can be configured to almost any weapon subject to "size" restrictions. The "Orion Phaser Boat" has only phaser-1s in the option mounts. It's hard to explain why the phaser boat is so effective without explaining the whole SFB game mechanics, but trust me, they are so effective, that the "phaser boat" was subsequently outlawed in tournament play. Apparently the term migrated over to Battletech, where a "boat" is described as a "game mechanic exploitation" using only a single type of weapon on a single vehicle. Use of "boat" mechs is frowned upon on some servers. Check with host before starting. 8.3 Destruction This is straight and simple combat. Points are awarded for kills only. Can be played in "team" mode (known as "Team Destruction"). The rules and points are in the manual. As only destruction is rewarded, you'll have to chase down the enemy mechs until they are destroyed. The sides being damaged should seek to protect the damaged mechs for as long as possible while getting kills. Damaged mechs should turn off their sensors and become either guerillas or snipers. Take a shot, run, take another shot, and contribute to the damage while not getting killed. Consider mounting high explosives to "take one more with you" if the server allows it. Concentration of firepower is paramount, as it'll get you kills fast, without giving the attacker a chance to cause more damage. This also means you need to stay together. Create hunt lances. As mechs got damaged, detach it to sniper, guerilla, or suicide missions. 8.4 Attrition A looser version of Destruction, points are awarded for damage as well as destruction of enemy 'Mechs. Can be played in "team" mode (known as "Team Attrition"). As there is a bonus on destroying a larger mech, teamwork is again, paramount. In fact, larger mechs should consider leaving the kills to the smaller mechs to maximize the "bonus" factor. Instead of letting the Daishi doing the final blow on another Daishi (for no bonus), let an Uziel do it and you will gain an extra 5x50=250 pts, theoretically that is. All the stuff in "destruction" also applies. 8.5 Capture the Flag This is a team only battle. Each team is assigned a flag. The flag starts at the center of each team's base. The goal is to grab the enemy flag and bring it back to your base. As the objective is grabbing the flag, smaller mechs are needed as the runners, escorted by other mechs. Heavy mechs should stay as guards. The "flag guard" heavy mechs need heavy knock-down weapons like LBX20's to prevent the flag capture. The runners / chasers need ECM to protect themselves. They should probably be equipped with Streak SRMs as they're busy running and have no time to aim. Remember the "eject flag if shut down" rule, so load up on heatsinks and engines. Jumpjets would be a good idea in general. You COULD use medium or even heavy mechs as flag runners, which would get you the firepower you need to blow past the guards, as well as survive the flag guards. You can even be sneaky as you attack from one side and your flag runner gets in from the other side with passive sensors only and ECM. 8.6 Steal the Beacon Hold the flag (a.k.a. the beacon) for as long as possible. Think of this as a game of "tag". So steal the flag and keep running. Shutting down / dying releases the flag. There's two tactics you can use: either you RUN, or you FIGHT. Pick a good brawler with decent speed like Uziel or Shadow Cat and you'll surprise those players with light mechs like Cougar. However, pick something TOO heavy and you won't be able to chase down the little guys with the flag. 8.7 Escort Protect your team's VIP, while attempting to destroy the enemy VIP and enemy 'Mechs. One pilot from each team must be the designated VIP, while the rest are escorts. VIP maximum 'Mech tonnage is 35 tons. The VIP pilots are scored based on a Score Zone. If the VIP reaches the SZ intact, then points will be awarded. The goal of a VIP is to stay alive and reach as many Score Zones as possible. The tactics are pretty simple: do what the American football players do when they return a kick. The VIP stays in the back as the escorts form a "flying wedge". Then the wedge charges forward into the enemy defense, while the ball carrier looks for holes to get through. So you need some solid fighters that moves fast, like Mad Cat or Thor as escorts. As attackers, you need two teams. One to push the escorts away from the VIP, the other to charge in and take the VIP out. The anti-escort team need to be heavy to handle the escorts, while the VIP kill team needs to be light, yet have one set of close- range killer weapons, like LBX20. Go in there, knock the VIP down, and blast it. 8.8 King of the Hill Hold "The Hill" for as long as possible. "The Hill" is an area marked by a beacon or building in the center of the map, and extends in a 100-meter radius around it. When your 'Mech is on "The Hill", an icon will be displayed on your heads-up display (HUD.) As kills do NOT matter, the only reason you want to make kills is when you want to get the non-contested-hill bonus. Heavy mechs rule in this game as they are heavy enough to last. Smaller mechs sniping will take too long. Take close-range brawling weapons, as enemies must come to you. The shotgun Daishi variant is quite deadly for use in KOTH. 9 Misc. Info To be compiled later.