Strategy Guide - Guide for Total Annihilation
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TOTAL ANNIHILATION MISSION SPOILERS By Jarrod Hampton TABLE OF CONTENTS CHAPTER 1 ARM MISSION SPOILERS CHAPTER 2 CORE MISSION SPOILERS CHAPTER 1 ARM MISSION SPOILERS MISSION 1- A Hero Returns This is a very easy mission, as all you have to do is get one of your units to the base of the galactic gate (the structure that is visible to the north). Simply group all of your units together and click on the patch of ground just below the gate. As your units move up they will be engaged by CORE troops, but ignore them. If one or more of your units get stopped by an enemy unit, click again just below the gate and they will start moving again. Most likely it will be a peewee that gets to the gate first, simply because they are the fastest. MISSION 2- CORE Kbot Base, Destroy It! There are three paths across the water into the secion of the map that you start off in (although the southern two are so close together that they can be considered to be one), and placing two light laser towers at each of these is a good way to stop most of the CORE attacks. However, you may need to attack some Storm kbots as their missiles can hit the laser towers without needing to get into the lasers' firing range. Build your defenses and build up your units for the assault. Alternately, for a quicker game, build one or two solar collectors, take your commander south and D-gun your way into the base and D-gun the kbot lab as soon as you spot it. The AK's you'll encounter can either be D-gunned or shot with the laser. MISSION 3-Spider Technology It may be a good idea to move the spider bots back from the edge slightly and put them on 'Hold Position'. Moving them back makes them that much more difficult to hit. Try and keep an eye on the minimap at all times in case the spider bots get attacked and make sure they are firing their paralyser at their attackers. There are three ways across the river that the computer uses, so protect them with light laser towers, again watching out for any Storms. Try and clear the right side of the map of all CORE units before attempting to bring the spiders south. There is a way across the river just below the mountain they are on, so the spiders never needs to travel along the left side of the map. You need to get at least one spider bot into your base. This means below the line of the dragon's teeth. If you don't get the victory notice, move them around a bit until you get it. MISSION 4-CORE Contamination Spreads... Always keep your base well defended by light laser towers as this is the first mission that you will face some tough opposition. Back this up with appropriate units and kbots. As you expand your base, build additional radar towers for extended spotting range. Use your Samsons and Rockos (the Samsons are probably slightly better) to target enemy buildings (use the minimap to target them while outside of their visual range). Using this method you should be able to destroy most of the CORE laser towers without losing too many units. Depending on the level of difficulty you are playing, you may come across some Reapers which can cause some serious trouble (try and D-gun them if possible). If you decide to build some Zippers, remember to keep them constantly on the move, as their speed makes them very difficult for the CORE units to track. A group of Zippers makes a nice strategic strike force as they can get anywhere very quickly. When attacking the CORE base, try and take out their construction labs as a first priority so they don't keep making new bots. MISSION 5- The Gate to Thalassean The key to this mission is to take and hold the choke point located south of your position by the ocean side. You will know this choke point by the classic two hills with a narrow pass in between them. You will need to especially hold the left hill. The computer loves that hill and will take it if he can since it is a direct route from his base and offers him a great firing position. Also there is a small opening on the left side of this hill. It is like a small sea shore where there is enough room for a big tank to pass through. Blast a few that try to pass through and that will plug up the gap. There are some low hills in front of the larger 2 hills. Use these to help you gain cover and ground as you move forward. The gate is located to the southwest corner of the map on an island. You can take your squad of aqua tanks there but there are a few turrets and thuds that will be waiting for you. You will need your commander to capture the gate himself. I found that 6 tanks + the commander works pretty well. The walls are too steep for good fire support from your subs. But on the other main land mass, you can harass the enemy by using the skeeter's radar to spot. Once spotted, use the sub to shoot the units standing on the shore. It is a real rush shooting away at the enemy when he has no idea were you are underwater. Subs work great on land units on the shoreline and ships that can't shoot into the water. Every so often I find a stray unit too close to the shore and I happily tell the sub to target that radar blip. There will be some small forces and emplacements to the east of you. A squad of 8 - 10 peewees will be able to take them out. You might consider some rockos added to the squad to give them some fire support if you wish to minimize your losses. MISSION 6-Beachhead on Thalassean Even though you start with just the Commander, he shouldn't have any trouble dispatching the Core welcoming committee. Save energy by not using your Disintegrator Gun. Collect the metal wreckage before building three Metal Extractors and Wind Generators. All the time, keep an eye out for Core scout ships in the harbor area. Once you have your generators, build a shipyard in the harbor, then construct two Lurker submarines, a Construction Ship, two Crusader destroyers, and several more submarines. There are still a few more Core AKs on the island which need taking care of, but build the ships as fast as you can. Core naval units approach from several directions, but primarily east and west. Position two subs by the eastern islands until you can build a couple of Torpedo Launchers. Use the Construction Ship to reclaim sunken metal. Build a small fleet of Lurkers and Crusaders, and a couple of Skeeters as counterattacks against Core ships. Core Snake subs and Enforcer destroyers patrol aggressively just outside the harbor. Make sure you have at least two submarines at the mouth of the harbor at all times to prevent The Core forces from reclaiming it. Move the Commander to the western side of the island to build a Kbot Lab. Build six to eight Hammer artillery units to take out the Core surface ships that soon appear. Create a Construction Kbot to build Guardian stationary plasma cannons along the western coast. Move your subs and destroyers to the western side of your island, and as your navy expands, send out a small force of subs and destroyers to the north side and patrol the area. Build an Advanced Shipyard and then two Piranha attack subs (to take out Core submarines) and two Conqueror cruisers, whose long range guns should take care of the surface ships. Keep your ships mobile. Core naval units are limited, and you may need to mop up the last one or two. Rather than sacrifice your Hammers, repair them when their health drops below 50 percent. MISSION 7- The Defense of Larab Harbor The key to winning this mission is to look after your Moho Mine, repairing it after each Core attack from the air. As the mission begins, you are seconds away from an initial attack. An Enforcer and Hydra arrive almost immediately at the center of the world, followed by Searchers. A squadron of Shadow bombers will dump its load in the north-west. To combat this, move your Ranger ship south, and use your Skeeters and Crusader for a full-on attack. Move two Jethros and a Samson to the west of your base as anti-aircraft defense. Use the shipyard to produce a Construction Ship and several Lurkers. Get the subs to the south-east edge of the harbor to protect against the Core ships. Use the Construction Ship to build an Advanced Shipyard immediately so that you can produce Piranhas, Rangers and Conquerors. Use the Commander to repair the Mine, collect metal and build a Vehicle Plant. The latter should first create Samsons as air defense, and then a Construction Vehicle to build Defender missile towers against air attack and plasma cannons against sea-based offensives. Use the Construction Ship to reclaim metal from the sea before building several Torpedo Launchers at the harbor opening, while being protected by submarines. Use the Commander to build more Solar Collectors (or Wind Generators) and reclaim metal. The Construction Vehicle should now take over the task of repairing the Mine between attacks. Build two more Construction Ships to reclaim sunken ships, while maintaining energy and metal levels so that you can continue to build the expensive naval units in the Advanced Shipyard. Bear in mind that your task is to protect the Mine. Don't try to attack The Core, whose force is enormous. If you are in danger of being overrun, build extra Torpedo Launchers to protect the gaps between the harbor and the small island in the mouth. Group land-based defenders near the Mine, ready to repel any amphibious tanks that might get past your subs. The Dragons Teeth slow any amphibious tanks, and you can concentrate your firepower, including the Disintegrator Gun. When the attacks begin to trail off, it's probably safe to seek out the remaining forces to end the mission. MISSION 8-The Gate to Tergiverse IV This mission is best described as a cow. Set aside a couple of hours to finish it. And save regularly, because all your hard work will be in vain if you accidentally destroy the Galactic Gate on the northern island. Build a Construction Ship immediately, followed by several Lurker submarines. You also need to construct a radar tower as soon as possible; the tiny island immediately to the north-west is an ideal location - the Commander can even walk to it. Energy and metal are scarce, and sources are scarce, so collect any wrecks you find. While building the Construction Ship, get the Lurkers, Skeeters, Crusader and Ranger to patrol around your base. Get the Construction Ship to build at least three Torpedo Launchers around the top of your island, while your Commander builds a Vehicle Plant to construct Samsons. Also create a Construction Vehicle to make Guardians and Defender missile towers. The purpose of the mission is to gradually expand onto the four islands to your north (you can ignore the larger one immediately to the north-east). Use the smaller islands to protect against naval attacks. Concentrate defenses around the channels between each of the islands. Get the Construction Ship to build an Advanced Shipyard to the south of the existing shipyard after creating the Torpedo Launchers. Keep building naval units in both yards. Build a Guardian on the north-east edge of the second island you occupy. Once you have created Level-2 Piranhas, Rangers, and Conquerors, you can begin your attempt at occupying the third island in the center of the map. Build eight to ten Flash and Stumpy tanks and Samsons as a base defense force, assisted by the Dragons Teeth you were supplied with at the start. Your initial assault on the center island can involve a destroyer shelling Core Torpedo Launchers out of their range. A long-range plasma cannon will help too. Finally, go for all out attack with several Conquerors, two Millennium battleships, several Rangers, and a few Lurkers, Crusaders, and Skeeters. Your Hulks can bring over a bunch of anti-air units - Jethros and Samsons - to take out The Core air force. Use the new island as a staging area before going for the final island, but be ready for shelling from that one and a second to the north-east. Consider building an Advanced Vehicle Plant to chuck out Amphibious Tanks, transported to the island by Hulks. Be aware that the Galactic Gate is likely to get pulverized if you leave your force to its own devices. Control the attack carefully. When it looks as if victory is in the bag, walk your Commander across to capture the Gate. MISSION 9-The Hydration Plant You get to play with air units for the first time in this scenario. As the mission begins, two Pyros are attacking your Commander. Dispatch them and capture the Core Radar Tower and Metal Extractor. Construct your own Radar Tower and Aircraft Plant immediately, followed by two Light Laser Towers to the north and south. Core fighters will attack, but should be fought off by the towers, at least until you can get some air defenses going. With your first Freedom Fighter, patrol around the top of your base. Repair the Laser Towers and Metal Extractor as necessary. With several Freedom Fighters and Thunder Bombers, patrol your base to gradually disable the Core air force. You'll need plenty of aircraft to wipe them out completely, though, sending them to the northern edge. While they work the enemy, continue to build aircraft, including Atlas transports. Although you are thinning the Core's force, it's still safer to fly the Commander to the second hillock to your north. Unless you have destroyed it already, you will find a Light Laser Tower here. Capture the Solar Collectors. To the north of this second hillock is the Hydration Plant, surrounded by Dragon's Teeth. Either fly or walk the Commander to it, taking out any remaining Core troops. Once the Plant is captured, the mission is a success - you don't need to wipe out The Core to succeed. MISSION 10-The Bromid Maze Leave the Zippers in the upper left corner as moving them out of that area seems to trigger an airstrike. Ths map is excellent to establish kill zones for your defensive structures. You should focus on Defenders as they will provide you with excellent air defense as well as good ground defenses. If you look at the map, you should only need to build two sets of defenses as you can build your base so that there are only two entrances. You want to build an advanced plant to get an advanced construction unit so that you can build mohole mines to replace your metal extractors. Just grab those mines that are in the southern section of the map. Don't try and expand too far north, as when you have converted to all mohole mines, you will have an ample metal income. You will need to build a lot of solar collectors as you cannot build a fusion reactor or geothermal plant. Use construction aircraft to build Defenders on top of the ridges your other construction bots can't reach. You will get your first chance to see a Brawler pack in action on this map. Build up 7 or 8 Brawlers and start targetting red dots on the map. For an even better coverage, set a patrol point in the midst of a collection of red blips. The Brawlers will make short work of most things. If you come across a defensive structure (the CORE has a Punisher and a number of Gaat Guns), target it immediately. Send the Brawlers home is they get damaged - it is best to have one or more construction aircraft on patrol in a section of your base as you can then land the Brawlers there and they will get automatically repaired. Your defenses and Brawler pack will mean that you shouldn't have any trouble with CORE forces. If you see a column on the move towards your base, intercept them with the Brawlers and see how effective they are against ground forces. MISSION 11-The Gate to Barathrum The canyon in which the Galactic Gate is situated is heavilly guarded by CORE Gaat Guns and Pulverizers, the later of which will cause your aircraft serious problems in that area until you destroy these defences. Try and get another construction craft built as soon as you can and start building your own missile towers in strategic points. You will face some CORE aircraft, but building enough Defenders should leave you safe. Build up your metal extractors around the site where you started, and continue expanding your mining operation to the right of the map, building defenses as you go. When you have your force of Brawlers established, have then take out the defenses in the canyon, and then all of the canyon's defending units. Put the Brawlers onto 'Return Fire' rather than 'Fire at Will' because you don't want them to attack the Galactic Gate by mistake. Destroy everything on the map and walk your Commander to the Gate and have him capture it (remember to put him on 'Hold Fire' so that he doesn't attack the Gate with his laser). MISSION 12-Barathrum! The moho mine that you need to capture is in the upper right hand corner, so when you send your units there, be careful what you destroy. Also in this section are a number of windmills and metal extractors. Instead of getting rid of the computer's production capabilities piecemeal, you should wait until you have a squad of about 7 Brawlers and then raid the upper right hand corner and destroy everything (except the moho mine!), and then head directly south into the lower right hand corner. This corner holds nearly all of the other metal extractors that the computer owns - destroying these will halt the computer in its tracks. There are a couple of Gaat guns and Pulverizers and Crusher Kbots in this area, so you should target them as a priority, but your Brawlers should make short work of them. You can claim all of the upper left hand side as your own, as you can establish four small packets of defensive structures that will cover all the four land paths into that section of the map. Again, Defenders are a good choice here, but always back them up with at least 1 Sentinel laser as a rush of fast units may get past the Defenders (they have a long range but don't do a great deal of damage). Set up patrol paths for multiple scout planes so that the Defenders have a chance of firing at their extended range. Putting a construction plane on patrol in each of these four areas will reduce the chance of you losing a defensive structure. Any air assaults the computer makes will be dealt with by the Defenders. When you have the opportunity, upgrade some of your metal extractors to moho mines. Don't bother trying to establish a geothermal powerplant, as you will have to do that outside of your fortified area. It is much easier to build a vast array of solar collectors - the upper left hand corner makes a good place. When you start, build metal extractors and solar collectors as your Commander makes his way down the pathway in the lava. D-gun the laser tower that will attack him. Once out of the lava, you should have him build a light laser tower and then an aircraft plant. From there it is just a matter of following the adive above. MISSION 13- Landown's Interface You will only be attacked by CORE air troops in this mission, but there will be a lot of them(This may different in your experience but this happened to me). Defenses will be a heavy line of Defenders at the top of your base, with a few more scattered throughout your base (as it is likely that a few planes will make it through your first line of defense). You should build your Defenders close enough to the cliff face (scout it with the Zippers you start out with) so that they can just reach the units on top of the cliff, but are out of range of units on the cliff, and are far enough away so they aren't continually attacked by aircraft. CORE will build a huge number of ground units and pile them against the cliff edge. You can forget about them for the most part, but be aware that they contain a number of missile-firing troops, so your aerial forays to the top of the cliff should avoid the group of unit. Build at least 2 advanced aircraft plants and have them constantly churn out Brawlers and Hawks. You will need the Hawks to take out the CORE fighters, as they are a serious problem to your Brawlers. Assign numerous construction units to each advanced aircraft plant to speed up production (through the Guard function). When attacking the cliff top, you should have your aircraft move up from the far left or far right, and then sweep along the top. Your priority targets should be the aircraft plants, then the other plants. It you see a construction unit, destroy it! You don't want the CORE base being rebuilt. Metal and energy should not be a problem in this mission after you establish two or three moho mines and two geothermal plants. Where ever you build one of these advanced structures, you shuld protect it with a ring of about four Defenders. MISSION 14-The Heat Increases The Roach bombs come fast and frequently on this level, so you will need to establish a fairly large visual range around your base so that you can pick them off before they get close enough to do you any damage. You shuld aim to get another construction unit build as fast as you can so that you can start setting up Defenders. At the start of the mission, use the Zippers you are given to patrol the outskirts of your base, giving your other troops a chance to target the Roaches from a distance. There aren't many large hills or lava lakes in the area of the map where you start, which means that you will have to establish a large perimeter rather than concentrating on a few spots. Your static defenses should focus on Defenders because you will be hit with a lot of air attacks. However, you shouldn't rely on these for all of your anti-air capabilities, as the CORE force will attack with Rapiers, which can cause your base serious damage if they get past your initial row of defenses. Some Jethros or Samsons scattered throughout your base (usually in groups of 2 or 3) should be able to destroy any aircraft that make it through the screen of Defenders. When building the Defenders, you should build them in groups of 3 or 4 to make them that much more effective. The CORE base is defended with a lot of Gaat guns and is staffed by many Can Kbots, so expect heavy laser resistance. There is a fusion plant in the base which makes an excellent target for your Brawlers. The large number of thermal vents in the area where you start means that power is never going to be a problem, and you will have such a huge power surplus that you should build 7 or 8 metal makers. You should be able to get a metal income of 30 after upgrading one or two metal extractors to moho mines. Have an advanced aircraft plant build a Brawler swarm and start taking apart the CORE base. If they are engaged by enemy planes, return them to base and hopefully the CORE planes will follow and be destroyed by your defenses. Once you have eliminated all of the CORE forces, capture the Galactic Gate. MISSION 15-Rougpelt It is probably easiest to not attempt to capture any enemy units with the Commander, although it is possible to do so. Having additional units on this map means that you have to micromanage them to some extent to stop them from blowing up the advanced radar tower when they come across it. The Commander is able to destroy any CORE forces on the map with his D-gun. You may feel like building a couple of radar towers of your own as you move down the map, so that you can get some idea of the movements of the CORE troops. Reclaim the plants if your energy gets too low, but this shouldn't really be a problem. Capture the CORE solar collectors that you find, although you should set up a radar tower here so that you can determine whether there are any CORE troops in the area that will come along and destroy them. The advanced radar tower that you have to capture is defended by laser towers, but you should be able to D-gun them without taking too much damage. Remember to put the Commander on 'Hold Fire' or 'Return Fire' so that he doesn't destroy the advanced radar tower by mistake. MISSION 16- Stockpile at the Abutment You will come under air attack very early in this mission, so you should try and build some anti-air capabilities as soon as possible. Your third building (after a metal extractor and solar collector) should be either a vehicle or kbot plant. Build a few Jethros or Samsons, and then a construction vehicle. When this construction vehicle has been finished, have it build a Defender if the CORE planes are still harassing your forces. There are so many thermal vents on this map that you will be able to get a massive power surplus. Build 10 or 12 metal makers after you have placed the geothermal power plants, as this will give a real boost to your metal income. You will notice that you can build a fusion power plant in this mission, along with a Big Bertha cannon. The best place on the map to build the Bertha cannon would be on top of the rocky outcrop near the center of the map. This will let the cannon fire onto the top of the Abutment. An advanced radar tower placed near the Abutment will give you radar coverage over most of the top (although some sections will be hidden by radar jammers). Use the Bertha to start shelling any red blips (you don't have to capture anything, so just destroy it all). You should build some heavy defenses as a few columns of tanks will attack you. Placing a ring of Sentinels and Defenders around the path down the Abutment will be able to stop any ground offensives the CORE launches at you. Place these structures back a bit from the cliff face, to give them the best firing solution. Put some scout planes on patrol over the pathway. You should build a small strikeforce of Brawlers to help defend these defensive structures, as they are likely to come under fire from mobile artillery, and possibly Diplomats. Don't neglect your anti-air defenses towards the latter stages of the mission, as air strikes will continue throughout the mission, although not on the same scale as what you faced at the beginning. After your Bertha cannon has taken out all visible targets, use scout planes to search for any other units that were hidden by a radar jammer. Make the radar jammer your priority target as destroying this will then reveal all the previously hidden target. MISSION 17-Fortress at Brooban's Isle There are three islands along the botom of this map, and you should try and expand to all of them as quickly as you can. The leftmost island contains a thermal vent that you should build a geothermal powerplant on. There are only a few metal deposits available to you, so try and upgrade them to moho mines when you have build an advanced construction unit (most likely this will be an advanced construction aircraft). The starting Jethros will most likely be able to take care of the early air attacks, and your starting ships should be able to dispatch the few Searchers and occasional Enforcer that attack you. You may want to build an early metal storage building as you don't want to waste any salvagable metal early in this mission. The CORE sea attacks don't hold back in this mission. Expect to face fleets of 4 Warlords attacking you at once, backed up with subs and sub-killers. The heavy lasers of the Warlods can take out a Defender with one hit and outrange Defenders, so they are of no use against these fleets. After this attack, you can expect a fairly large convoy of Crocks to rumble towards your shores. You can actually D-gun Crocks just as they are coming out of the water but before they can fire. Try and build up a group of torpedo bombers to help destroy the Warlords when they come, or a large force of submarines and sub-killers, although the latter method must first engage the Warlords' submarine defenders before engaging the Warlords themselves. There are a couple of advanced shipyards that will be producing various ships, namely Warlords and Hives. When you locate CORE construction ships, destroy them as they will repair other CORE ships. CORE has access to numerous Titan torpedo bombers and Rapiers. If you take an aggressive stance and use a squad of your own torpedo bombers to cause some damage amongst the fleet of Warlords and Hives, expect the Titans to come south and attack you. Use Hawks to destroy Rapiers. In the top left and top right corners are moho mines, which you should try and take out to reduce the computer's metal income. When attacking the center island, be especially careful as your units will treat the Silencer (the building that you have to capture) as an enemy weapon, and hence attack it automatically if set to 'Fire at Will'. Similarly, you should not let them attack the fusion power plant that is right next to the Silencer, as its explodosion may destroy the Silencer. If you build a Bertha cannon on the middle island on the bottom of the map, you will be able to shell the defensive structures on the southern side of the main island without having to worry too much about hitting the Silencer. You will need to build a fusion plant of your own as there is only the single thermal vent, and there isn't enough land available to build lots of solar collectors. MISSION 18- Vengence! A fairly easy and very short mission. Your peewees will be killed fairly quickly, but if you concentrate their firepower, you should be able to cause some damage to the currounsing units. Heed the briefing and don't bother building anything, as the CORE troops will head north after killing the peewees. However, you may like to build another solar collector to power the D-gun. Your Spiders can be very useful when the CORE units are approaching, for they will stop the CORE units from beign able to attack or move, making them perfect targets for the rest of your troops. You should be able to destroy the CORE troops without too much of a problem, especially with a few sprays of the D-gun. MISSION 19- The Motien Ramp Surprisingly easy. The CORE base has an Intimidator gun and uses it througout the mission, but I didn't lose a single unit to this cannon. The hill to your north provides good protection from it, so try and build your critical buildings behind this hill. You will need some air defenses and also a few laser towers to turn away the few ground attacks that will be launched. Using massed Rapiers, you can destroy the CORE base piece by piece. Start by destroying the vehicle plants, then working your way through the rest of the base. MISSION 20-DUMP There is a way to get access to aircraft on this mission - capture the CORE Kbot that is wondering around near where you start. Not only can you build aircraft after capturing this Kbot, but using it to build an advanced construction unit allows to you build all of the high tech level buildings - including the nuclear missile silo! There are quite a few 4,000+ metal wreckages on this map, and you don't want to waste them so you should build enough metal storage buildings until you have a maximum metal reserve of something approaching 6,000 units. Your only opposition will be some ground units, so you can forget about building missile towers and concentrate on Gaat Guns. Three Gaat Guns next to each other can stop most of the advances, but you should watch out for attacks by Diplomats, which will strike from beyond your range. There will be some Goliaths and Reapers that you need to deal with, so choose your weaponry well. Energy will be a bit of a problem as you will have to rely on solar collectors for a lot of energy. Again, build one or two energy storage buildings so that you don't waste excess energy. When choosing which piece of wreckage to reclaim, you should never choose one with a metal value that is not enough to fill up your metal reserves. You don't really want to waste any metal on this level. If you do capture the construction Kbot and use it to build aircraft, it is interesting to note how far a bomber's payload travels - gravity is very low on this moon. MISSION 21-Welcome to CORE PRIME There are two pathways into the area of the map that you start in, but the CORE forces only seem to use the middle one. At the start of the game, build 2 light laser towers at the top of the ramp after building a couple of solar collectors and metal extractors near the galactic gate. These will hold off the first wave of attacks. Build a vehicle plant and then an advanced vehicle plant and a Spider. Use the Spider to paralyze the Pyros so your Commander can capture them, then send it to paralyze the CORE construction KBot that is patrolling the top area of the map. Capture that with the Commander as well, and then have the Commander capture the solar collectors and metal extractors that are along the top area of the map. Build some Sentinel towers and a few missile towers to further protect the middle ramp, and also one or two Guardians. When you have built at least 1 fusion plant, start construction of an Annihilator at the top of this ramp as well - when this comes on line, no enemy units are going to get anywhere near your base. Use Peepers to patrol the area of the map at the bottom of the middle ramp, so that your defenses will fire at their longest range. You have access to the Bertha cannon in this mission, although the presence of the high walls mean that it cannon attack many areas of the CORE base, but it is still a good option to build one to attack the areas of the map that it can reach. The middle ramp will be used a fair bit by the CORE troops during this mission - your static defenses will quickly rack up the kills. You Annihilator may reach a triple digit kill count. You should build three fusion reactors on this map, to make sure the Annihilator always have enough power to fire. Metal is not a problem, naturally. Use either Brawlers or Phoenix strategic bombers to soften up the CORE base. If using the Phoenix aircraft, keep them together and in numbers - their massed lasers will destroy all the CORE aircraft with relative ease. Then clean up the rest of the CORE base with whatever you feel like building. There are a number of vehicle, Kbot and aircraft plants that you should make your first priority in attacks. MISSION 22- Battle for Coordinate 6551:447 You have the bottom of the map all to yourself, and do not get attacked by land units in this mission. You will notice that there are two rows of 5 square hills in the bottom section of the map - on the middle hill in the top row build a Guardian cannon and a radar tower and start shelling the ships in the first section of water. Then shell any ground units that are in range. Don't target the solar collectors yet. You should build some missile towers around this hill, as it will come under air attacks later on. Build one or two fusion plants and moho mines to give you a good income, and build a Bertha cannon on the same hill that you built the Guardian cannon. The Bertha can hit all of the map. Also build an advanced radar tower here. Now, start shelling everything else on the map with the Bertha cannon - make sure that you have set up your anti-air defenses beforehand because Rapiers can take out a Bertha cannon quickly. To get your Commander on top of one of these hills, you will have to use an Atlas. To speed up the destruction of everything, build some strategic bombers and start bombing the numerous fusion plants that line the top of the map. If you think that you have killed everything but the mission hasn't ended, chances are that you missed the submarines. There is a sub in each of the waterways. Use a Peeper to find where they are and use an Atlas+Invader combo to destroy them (detonate the Atlas above the sub, and the sub will get blown up). MISSION 23- Crossing Aqueous Body 397 You will see some large columns of Crock amphibious tanks attack you in this mission. However, there are only a couple of ramps on the southern section of the map that they are able to move up, so blocking these with Dragon's Teeth will vastly reduce their effectiveness. An Annihilator or some heavy lasers will destroy those Crocks that do wander out of the depths. The computer doesn't have a shipyard on this level, so is limited to the ships it starts with. However, this includes a couple of Warlords, so you will need some long range weapons to combat these beasts. Two Guardian cannons built on the middle 'pier' will let you engage them from afar. You should have 6 or 7 torpedo bombers ready to attack the Warlords as soon as you have spotted them. If you are having difficulty with the Warlords, build an Annihilator on this pier as well - not even a Warlord can survive more than a few shots from this laser. Have some Peepers constantly patrolling the ocean, as this will give you the location of any submarines that are near your base. The computer can use these subs as spotter units for their Warlords. These subs usually arrive in numbers, making them costly to attack with ships. A couple of Atlas+Invader combos will sink them without a trace, however. Build a Bertha cannon on the middle 'pier' as well, and start shelling everything on the radar. Use suicide scout planes to try and locate any large ships that are currently 'parked', and target them. Then go after the construction plants. At the beginning of the mission, you will come under attack by a few Avengers. However, they are really just a nuisance. Jethros don't seem to be too effective against Avengers, so you may not want to bother building them and just ignore these attacks until you can build some Defenders. If the mission isn't ending and you think that you have killed everything, most likely there is a Crock or submarine that you haven't killed. Use your Peepers to sweep the water looking the the remainding units. MISSION 24 Breakthrough to Central Consciousness You don't come under attack for quite a while on this level, so take your time to build up. The bottom section of the map is more than enough space for your base, so don't expand beyond the southern 'walls'. Block off all but one or two of the entrances to this section of the base with Dragon's Teeth, and build an Annihilator at the entrances you have left open. Backed with a heavy laser tower, and even when The Cans come after you, nothing will get close. Peepers patrolling the area will give these big guns enough warning of an approaching enemy column. Either build a good fighting force of Hawks or a lot of Guardians (Hawks are better in this mission) as you will get attacked by Vamps and Rapiers after you start demolishing the CORE base. You do this demolition job with a Big Bertha - build it on top of one of the walls, and you can hit anything on the map. You'll need an advanced construction aircraft to do this. The computer doesn't have any factories on this level, so all you have to do is gradually wear its forces into the ground. After you have destroyed the CORE airforce with your Hawks, you own the skies - and this means death to the CORE. Your Bertha, Brawlers or bombers can now get about the task of killing the last of the CORE vermin. There are numerous Doomsday machines protecting the dome which would make a ground-based attack suicidal. Combined with The Cans on patrol around the base, air superiority becomes vital. Once you have killed all the CORE units and structures, move your Commander into the center of the dome and you will win. MISSION 25 CORE PRIME Apocalypse. Free at Last! Unless you are unlucky or very stupid, your troops should be able to destroy the Roaches by themselves. The layout of this map makes setting up kill zones very easy. You don't need to extend your base beyond the lowest level (the one you start one). Set up your defensive structures so that they have line-of-fire on the two ramps down into your section (you will need to construct two clumps of defenses). These should include at least 2 Sentinels, 4 Defenders and at least 1 Guardian. Patrol the first step with scout planes so that these defenses will automatically fire. Build some Dragon's Teeth at the bottom of the ramp, leaving a small hole for units to pass through. Metal is no problem here, naturally, so you should be able to get to the advanced buildings and units fairly quickly. However, you shouldn't forget about the low tech units, especially Jethros, which will be especially useful in numbers to protect your base from Rapiers and Vamps. An advanced radar tower will provide coverage for most of the map, giving you warning of when another attack is about to begin. Put each of your defensive clumps onto a hotkey and when you see an enemy convoy approaching, target it for destruction. Building Brawlers and having them patrol the first step is also a good way of dealing with attacks (your static defenses will also start to fire after the Brawlers engage the enemy). Build some air repair pads, and your planes will automatically go to them when damaged. Once you have built a Bertha cannon (try and do so early), start shelling everything on the map. If you build 2 fusion power plants, you will never have power problems. CORE rebuilds their base, and more, in this mission so expect to destroy a lot of buildings. If you are going to use ground attacks, take out the multiple Doomsday Machines with the Bertha cannon. CORE will have an Intimidator cannon, which should be taken out as well. You could also use Merls to take out any static targets on the radar map (although always keep your eyes on those little red blips, and get your Merls to safety if you see some coming your way). A swarm of 6 or 7 Brawlers should be able to destroy the CORE Commander (although they will be killed as a result of the explosion). If you can destroy all of the CORE construction units (there are quite a few), then you will simply be able to Bertha them into oblivion. To win this mission after destroying the CORE forces, move your Commander onto the CORE symbol on the Command Dome. CHAPTER 2 CORE MISSION SPOILERS MISSION 1-The Commander Reactivated... Simple sweep and clear on your way to rescue the commander. Take your whole group straight north. If possible, keep Storms to the rear as they have longer range. Near the top of the map, you'll find a ramp to an upper level. Move your group west to bottom of ramp, then up it. Resistance is minimal, but you'll probably have lost a few units by this point. Continue along the upper level to the west then follow it south at the corner. About halfway down the map you'll find another ramp to the east where the last of the Arm vermin and your deactivated commander await. Kill the last of the rebels and you're done. MISSION 2-Vermin Quickly move your commander east and start him on 2 metal extractors and 2 solar collectors. While he's working on that, break units into two groups: one to the north and a second to the west. Expect nuisance attacks from both directions early in the mission. Add a vehicle plant to your commander's build orders, as well as a couple more metal extractors and a solar collector. Optionally, you can set up a couple light lasers (LLTs) to the north for extra defense, but by no means are they necessary. When the vehicle plant (VP) comes online, get it to work on a few Instigators to help provide cover while the rest of your resources are built. After your commander finishes building collectors and extractors, set him to guard the VP. This way, he will automatically contribute his rapid building ability to the VP's production so your assault force will get done quicker. Gather vehicles in the canyon just north of your position. It is possible to just take one large force and finish the mission, but due to the narrow areas you have to pass through it is more efficient to use two smaller waves. The bulk of your force should be made up of Instigators and Raiders, with a few Slashers for backup. About twelve units per wave should do the job nicely. Once your first group is gathered in the canyon, take them straight north until you encounter a wall. Head west to the middle of the map. You'll see an opening in the wall to the south - that's where your enemy is hiding. Move in and take them out. Be sure to focus your fire on the targets that can fire back first (LLTs and bots). By the time the Arm can take out this group, your second wave should be ready. Take them along the same path and finish the job. MISSION 3-Ambush! There is only 1 entrance to the area you start in, which means you can establish heavy defenses around it. As fast as possible, establish a light laser tower near the entrance (but still within the enclosed area) as you will get a visit from some peeweesquite early. Don't try and establish yourself out of the starting area just yet. If your two starting Storms get killed before you can get the laser tower up, D-gun the attackers. Build up your metal and power income and produce some kbots. You will probably have noticed that there are some kbots on the left wall that can shell you - Storm kbots work well in taking them out. Put the Storms onto 'hold position' about 5 or so body lengths away from the wall. A line of 5 Storms will soon clear the wall of any intruders. Beef up your defenses a bit with another laser tower. You can slowly creep out of the starting area and establish a laser tower outside. Once you have done this, its really all over. A group of three light laser towers can stop all the attacks this mission throws at you. Produce Storms like mad and go on a rampage. Storms are particularly useful in this mission because their missiles can hit from a distance (get rid of those pesky peewees) and can also shoot units that are standing on walls. MISSION 4-Enough is Enough Move your Commander to the top of the high plateau to the right of the starting position. D-gun the LLTs guarding the on-ramp near the right edge of this high ground. Then you should be able to build up your base pretty much unmolested. (Just make sure to set up some defenses at the on-ramp). After this, there are many possible ways to end this mission. Set up some missile towers just a couple of "squares" from the edges of the plateau so that they are less prone to be hit from below, and kill all the patrolling "red blips" on the mini-map (never seen the "faces" of any of them). :) And then just send a mixture of AKs and missile bots to clean up the ARM base and capture the gate. MISSION 5-Barathrum! You'll have two Arm Pee-Wees attacking you as soon as you enter. Hit one with the D-Gun and capture the other. The gate you came through sits on top of a large hill; head down it to the south. At the bottom you should see a couple metal deposits, set extractors to work on them, get a couple solar collectors up and a radar tower. You absolutely must get a K-bot lab up quickly here. Your metal production will be limited at first, and the bots are much cheaper to build.In particular, get a few Crashers finished to take care of any Arm aircraft that happen to come by. Get a construction bot built, then work on some Storms and Thuds for ground defense, as well as some more Crashers. Have the construction bot start building Pulverizers around your base. Be very careful at this point as the Arm will send wave after wave of annoying little groups down to harass you. Until you've got a good line of Pulverizers up, you are vulnerable. Do repairs on damaged towers when possible, and keep some units out in front so you can see the enemy coming. While all this is going on, have your commander place several metal extractors around the area. Metal deposits are scarce, but the planet's crust is mineral rich enough that an extractor placed anywhere will turn out 0.5 units per tick. You'll need many more of these than you did on Core Prime, and thus you'll need extra solar collectors to power them and your other buildings.By now you should have a decent number of ground forces with a fairly solid air defense. A vehicle plant is your next priority. As soon as it's done, get a construction vehicle built and working on an advanced vehicle plant. Time to build the vehicle swarm again - Instigators, Slashers, Reapers, Diplomats and an Informer or two. The Arm base isn't well defended so it shouldn't take a very large swarm to finish them off. If you want, you have the option of constructing an aircraft plant to turn out some air support. Setting a few air units on patrol around your base can also help make your Pulverizers more effective by spotting approaching enemies while taking less fire than ground-based spotters.Once the swarm (and optional air support) is ready, send it north to take out the Arm base. One good-sized group should do the job, but it's a good idea to always have a backup group being built anytime you launch an attack. The base is fairly spread out, so you might have to search around a bit to find all the Arm units. Finish off the last one and your job is done. MISSION 6-The Cleansing Begins You start in the ideal place to set up a good base, so build Metal Extractors and energy generators where you stand. Build a Kbot Lab as you will soon come under attack from Arm aircraft. Build six or seven Crashers and move them underneath the flight path of the Arm patrols. Use the Fink scout plane to patrol east to west above your base, providing early warning of Arm attacks and saving you having to build a costly Radar Tower. When you have a few Crashers, send the Fink on recon to the east, west, and north of your base. It should discover a few useful energy and metal resources. To defend against the constant onslaught of Arm attacks, build a line of Crashers and Storms. Also build a couple of defensive structures - Light Laser Towers, or preferable Heavy Laser and Punisher Towers. Repair damaged units to expand the size of your army. Build a Vehicle Plant, a Construction Vehicle and an Advanced Vehicle Plant to build Diplomats. Having beaten off a few Arm attacks, you can start on the offensive. Build several Diplomats and Reapers. Once assembled, wait for the next attack before issuing a counterattack. The Arm's defensive structures will be more troublesome than the few remaining units. Advance slowly and build Radar Towers, using the data to dispatch the structures from a distance. With the base smoking, send out small patrols to mop up any surviving Arm units. MISSION 7-Pulling the Noose Tight This is an easy one. The units you start with won't last long as a group of four Arm Zippers come down to bother you. Enlighten them as to the error of their ways with the D-Gun. You'll find several metal deposits near your starting position. Use this to your advantage and set up base right where you start. After your K-bot lab comes up and you've built a group of Crashers, get a couple construction bots out in the field claiming metal deposits and geothermal vents. Arm forces are strangely quiet during this mission, apparently content to sit back and wait for you to come to them. Use this to your advantage. While the construction bots work on getting you more resources, have the commander get the vehicle plant built. Time to build a vehicle swarm, but this time instead of a single large swarm, it's best to build two smaller ones. This is because the arm base is surrounded by a lava moat with two narrow entrances on the east and west sides. The only trick is to be careful with your targeting. You need to capture at least one of Arm's Moho mines to win. Move the mini-swarms along either side of the Arm base and hit them both simultaneously. (This isn't necessary to win, but gives you practice for later missions.) Once everything that can shoot back is destroyed, walk the commander in to capture at least one Moho and D-Gun anything left over. MISSION 8-The Gate to Aqueous Minor There are two pathways into the northern section of the map, both guarded by dual ARM Sentinel towers. There will be very few attacks, and certainly nothing very serious, so you can take your time establishing your base. Although the ARM base contains construction plants, it does not use them very much - but it is still best if you destroy them as soon as possible. If you use a bombing run to destroy these plants, you should make sure that the bomber force is large enough to destroy the target before they are in turn destroyed, because ARM does have a construction unit, and it will repair damaged buildings. About the only attacks worth noting are the aerial attacks - ARM will use bombers against you, so you should have aerial defenses scattered throughout your base. ARM cannot rebuild their airforce, so once you have destroyed it, you will dominate the skies. MISSION 9-The Purgation of Aqueous Minor This is a fairly easy one set up to introduce the naval part of the game. Right at the start you'll be assaulted by four Pee-Wees, take them out. There's no point in capturing one as this mission will be fought in places they can't go. Get the basic startup structures built and have the K-bot lab turn out six to ten Storms. These will help defend your coast while you get better defenses up. The easy way to take care of business here is to build a line of Pulverizers all along your northern shore. This "Pulverizer wall" will be more than enough to take out the few Arm ships that happen to come too close to your base. Don't forget to have a construction bot claim the Geothermal vent you'll find nearby. Once that is up, you can use a few metal makers to help supply the resources your navy will demand. Put a shipyard in the channel to the east. Here it will be relatively safe from Arm attacks while you turn out a small to medium navy. Get a few Enforcers into the water first to take care of anything that the Pulverizers can't hit (like subs). Building a construction ship next can help by building torpedo launchers and then helping with more ship building. Get another five or six Enforcers and a few Snake subs finished,then sweep the seas to the north. You'll need to take out some structures on the small islands, but they pose little threat to your ships. Chase down the last of the Arm Crusaders and Skeeters and you're done. MISSION 10-The Gauntlet You have a lot of time to establish yourself on the starting island before anyone comes to look for you, so take your time. The air attacks, when they come, are pretty pitiful and can be easilly destroyed. There will be some amphibious tank attacks, but these can be easilly repulsed with a Shark or two, or come Roaches placed in the water. If an enemy Lurker is stupid enough to attack a Roach that is underwater, that Lurker will die. When you build an advanced construciton unit, replace all of the metal extractors with moho mines, and build one or two fusion reactors so that you can power a lot of metal makers. You should be able to get a metal income of 40+ doing this. Build an advanced radar tower on your island, and use a missile frigate to destroy all the red blips that you see. Now you are left with the remaining ships near the Gauntlet and the defenses on top of the Gauntlet itself. You can use Sharks in large packs to slowly pick apart the ships, and then use them to scout close to the shoreline of the cliffs to see where the defenses are. Once spotted, they can easilly be destroyed by missile frigates. Alternatively, you can try the explosive method. Have an advanced Kbot lab continually churning out Roaches, and a shipyard continually building Envoys. As each Envoy is built, load it with 4 or 5 Roaches, and drive it in a direct line for the mouth of the Gauntlet. If it gets destroyed, the explosion will take out most ships and submarines on the screen. Or you can just drive them into the pack of ships you see, and self-destruct it - not many ships left after that! After a couple of these, you will be able to get a transport ship through the Gauntlet pretty easilly. MISSION 11-Isle Parche You'll have even more time to prepare on this mission than the one before. An advanced K-bot lab is still required so you can get Moho mines, a fusion plant and advanced radar up. As before, use the extra power for metal makers. Once your resource base is established, start on an airfield and use it to build a construction aircraft. In turn, it should start on an advanced airfield. While it is doing that, get a few Finks in production. You'll use these as spotters later on. Here is where things get fun. First thing you should do is change the default orders on the advanced airfield to "hold fire". This way, all planes produced from that field will not target anything you don't explicitly tell them to, thus reducing the chances of one accidentally taking out the Zeus you need to capture. Begin building a sizable force of Rapiers along with a few Vamps and three or four Titans. Group the Titans separately as they will be used (with the Finks) to take out Arm subs in the area while the rest of the planes head for the Arm base to the south. When your air force reaches the Arm base, target missile and laser towers first. They should fall quickly to your Rapier gunships. If there are still any enemy planes in the air, try to take them out next before starting on the various vehicles scattered about the island. There's only one Zeus bot here, be sure you don't hit it! Once the base is finished and the Zeus is alone, build a Valkyrie to take your Commander to the southern island. Capture the Zeus and that's it. MISSION 12-A Traitor Leads The Way A fairly easy mission that gives you a chance to build up quite a lot before you come under attack. On the northern end of the island you start on, you should build at least 2 Punishers - you will need these later in the mission when the battleships, cruisers and destroyers venture south. There isn't much space on your starting island, and nowhere else to go, so build a compact base. After building metal extractors on all the metal deposits and solar collectors, build a Kbot lab and a construction Kbot, and put that thermal vent to good use. As soon as you can, build an advanced Kbot lab and two or three advanced construction Kbots. Then set about converting the metal extractors to moho mines, and building two fusion plants. The first attack won't come for a long time (nearly 20 minutes), so you should be able to do all of this before the cruisers arrive. The bulk of the ARM forces won't attack you until you start attacking them. ARM has only one construction plant - a shipyard - so destroying that (it is in the upper right corner) will make this a battle of attrition. You can use either air power (you can only build the basic aircraft plant) and destroy ARM with bombers and fighters, or you can dominate the seas, in which case you have access to all of the CORE ships. Have some missile towers in your base to protect yourself from the few aircraft ARM possesses. You should have no trouble destroying the ARM forces, although you may like to build some flying bombs for anti-submarine duty. To win, capture the galactic gate with your commander, and move the Zeus next to it. You may have to move the Zeus around the gate a little for it to register. MISSION 13-Rougpelt A very quick mission. First, D-gun the Zeus bot. Capture the windmill for additional power for the D-gun. Travel south and capture both the Fink and Atlas. Load the commander into the Atlas and fly both straight south to the botth of the map. Move the Fink to the right until you spot the shore and unload the commander as close to the shore as you can. You might like to put the Fink into a patrol route that flies around the island you just landed on in an attemp to draw some of the fire. However, don't let the Atlas get killed - you will lose the mission if it gets killed! There is a light laser tower just a short distance inland - D-gun this and any units in the area. Move the commander along the bottom of the map until you come to the advanced radar tower. If you are coming under heavy fire from the missile Kbots, you might like to D-gun them, but make sure they aren't too close to the tower or it will get caught in the blast. Capture the tower, and you're done. MISSION 14-Scouring Rougpelt The mission description says your goal is to capture as much of the base to the east as you can. It lies. Capturing the base is easy. The trick is keeping it. Dispatch the pathetic defenses Arm had set up around this base and capture everything you can. Get some construction bots built in a hurry and have them start setting up Guardians (the Arm equivalent to your Pulverizers) all around the base, starting with the southern edge. Be careful to set the towers up on top of the hills that ring the base and not behind them. Once you've got the construction bots working on the Guardians, start producing Pee Wees as fast as you can. They won't be able to stop the impending assault, but they are cheap to build and make excellent spotter units for your Guardians. Don't stop producing them after you have enough to circle your base - you'll need extras to replace the ones that get killed. When your construction bots finish with the Guardians, set them on patrol the wall you just set up. There are meteor showers in the area that will randomly come down and damage or destroy your defenses. If anything gets destroyed, replace it immediately. The Arm will come, but not in huge numbers. Many of the units they bring are heavily armored so they might survive long enough to damage some of your Guardians. Your patrolling construction bots should repair them automatically. Whatever you do, don't try to take the fight to them. Just relax, keep your defenses up, and the Arm will eventually run out of units. MISSION 15-Xantippe's Abyss The Big Bertha gun is located about half way up the right side of the map. It is protected by two laser towers and a single construction Kbot. Depending on your level of difficulty the type of laser towers change, and on hard level, there may be a few extra Kbots around. The laser towers are far enough away from the Bertha to be safely D-gunned. On Hard difficulty, there are 2 Bertha cannons that you could capture. There is no opposition in the southern three-quarters of the map, so feel free to grab as many metal deposits as you can. Build a lot of power generators, as the Bertha uses a heck of a lot of power each shot (over 1000 units of power). Build an aircraft plant and a couple of finks and do suicide runs along the northern section of the map until you locate the Annihilator. When you have spotted it, pause the game, and target the Annihilator with the Bertha. Eventually it will hit it, and you will win the mission. The path across the Abyss is at the far right of the abyss, and there are some good spots for placing Gaat Guns and Pulverisers just in case an enemy comes down to greet you. On Easy you don't have to worry about this, but on hard you get attacked by a fairly large column of heavy armoured units so this may be necessary. A large group of rocket and artillery Kbots should be able to handle this column however. MISSION 16-Departing Rougpelt The problem here is that the meteor showers will awaken ARM units that should not wake up yet. If you are unlucky with the meteor showers, this could mean that five Brawlers pay your base a visit a minute into the game. You have to get some defenses up ASAP (definitely anti-air in case of a bad meteor shower). Your Commander can probably take care of any land attacks, provided that you have set up a few solar collectors. ARM has no construction plants, so if you can survive an initial rush (or are lucky enough to not have this happen), you are likely to win. The galactic gate is located on the top of the 'pyramid'. MISSION 17-The Lost Isle The simple key to this mission is building a string ship defensive arsenal. The idea is, sooner or later the computer will start shelling the hell out of the tiny island you start on, and no Kbot or tank will be able to stop a Millenium's incredible firing distance. If this happens, you are one dead duck, as there is no defense. So in order to make a strong defensive ship base, start off the mission with some basic tactics. First, clear away the trees (have the Thud light them up, or if you don't feel like clearing all the foliage, use the D-gun), then build some basic land defense units. I start off by building a Kbot lab, then have my Commander plant solar collectors and metal collectors around the island, while the Kbot lab produces a construction Kbot to build more complex structures. A few missile towers, on each side of the island will do. Crank out some Crashers and Thuds, and you are all set to fend off the few Triton invasions that come your way in the beginning of the mission. Next, build a shipyard, I like to build a couple of Snakes and then 2 or 3 Enforcers for every Searcher. In and of themselves, the Searchers are weak, but they can be a nice complement to a force of Enforcers. By this time your Commander should be done planting 4 or so solar collectors and metal collectors, so I have him guard the shipyard to increase production. Note that an advanced Kbot lab, or a vehicle plant is almost useless. The Kbots that an advanced Kbot lab produces are all units that need to be in close range to have any benefit, which makes them ineffective. Tanks are nice for land defense, but they still can't reach the ARM ships' range, so they aren't a wise move either. An airport would be a much better thing to build at this time (as you're cranking out ships). Setting some Shadows on patrol can help your Enforcers immensely, and if you have time to build a construction aircraft, head to the small island directly to the south east of your starting island, clear the few trees, and build a metal collector on the metal deposit. There is also a metal deposit at the island to the northwest, but it is in much riskier territory, as a heavy ARM ship assault soon comes from the west. MISSION 18-Slolam Pilago You get a break here with plenty of time to build. Get the standard stuff up, and move to Moho mines and fusion as quickly as possible. Once you have advanced radar up you'll notice several red dots circling around your island. These Arm subs will keep you from setting up a shipyard anytime soon, so focus your efforts on air power instead. In fact, you can just skip the shipyard entirely. Get your advanced airfield up and start on a dozen or more Rapiers with a few Vamps for support. There are five small islands and two larger islands to the north of your base. Each of the small islands has a cluster of Arm defensive structures. The larger island to the west has a group of planes and the eastern one contains the fusion reactor and several Sentinels. Sounds impressive, but each of these will fall in short order to your gunships. Start on a second group while you use the first wave to clear the small islands. If you've got enough left over (and you should) you can also clear out the western large island. By now you've probably taken enough losses to need that second wave you've been working on. Bring them up and take down the Sentinels protecting the fusion reactor on the eastern island. In the meantime, put a few Titans in the air to take out the Arm subs that have been circling your base. You'll have to target them manually by using the radar display, but they'll do the job quickly. Your gunships should have the island clear by now, so take out the fusion plant. Finish off any remaining red dots and you're done. MISSION 19-The Vebreen Fleet In general, defensive missions are a pain and this one is no different. Get your resource production up and a shipyard. You want as many of those Snake submarines as you can build. Split them into two packs, one on each side of your island so nothing gets through. When the Arm carriers start arriving, target them first. You don't want them to get planes in the air to complicate your already difficult mission. Make use of the Punishers whenever Arm ships come in range. They deliver a heavy blow to anything they hit. Keep turning out Snakes to replace any that fall in battle. It's simply a matter of making sure nothing sneaks by at this point. Keep your defenses strong and it's an easy win. MISSION 20-The Gate To Aegus ARM has no construction capability on this mission, so it is simply a matter of attrition. You can concentrate purely on aircraft on this mission, or branch out into ships if you want. Don't bother about building a Kbot or vehicle plant as it just takes up space that you can use for something else. You don't come under attack for a fairly long period of time, so feel free to build. Use construction aircraft to build metal extractors on the two small islands to the north. When you can, convert metal extractors to moho mines. With a few metal makers built early on, you should be able to construct an advanced aircraft plant and get moho mines and fusion plants up fairly soon. A force of torpedo bombers can be used to destroy the ARM ships. Strategic bombers should be used to destroy the Defenders on the main northern island so that your torpedo bombers don't suffer heavy losses. If you have two or three Finks on patrol across the middle of the map, they will warn you of the approach of the amphibious tanks - use your torpedo bombers to destroy them. Any that reach land can be easilly D-gunned. MISSION 21-Aegus...Empyrrean's Guardian Despite what you may infer from the mission briefing, there doesn't appear to be a time limit on this mission. Use Diplomats supported by an Informer and Deleter to take out buildings from afar. The galactic gate is in a large crater just north of the center of the map. Also in the crater is a fusion reactor - taking this out may reduce the effectiveness of the Annihilator (if you encounter one on the difficulty level). Capture the buildings along the eastern side of the map, especially the moho. Don't be too fussed about protecting the radar to the north if you capture it. The computer will use Erasers to hide some of its troops so having some fast units around to search for them may be of help. You can build an Intimidator here, but be careful when you aim it as you don't want to destroy the gate. At the bottom left of the map are a number of metal mines in close proximity. Getting these (either capturing the existing mines or destroying them and building your own) will greatly increase your metal income. Protect them with a Doomsday Machine (after building a fusion reactor or two), some troops and a Deleter. You apparently don't have to kill all of the enemy to win, just capture the galactic gate. There only seems to be one way down into the valley along the eastern side of the map, so protecting this with a Doomsday Machine or other toys will prove helpful as it is a fairly good place to build your base. MISSION 22-A Big Empyrrean Welcome Arm Zippers will attack when you enter - warm up the D-gun on them. You'll be using that super weapon quite a bit in this mission, so get used to it. Of course, to use it you need power, so you'll want to set up a sizable cluster of solar collectors behind a hill to the east. Here they will be safe from Bertha fire and from the Zippers that hang around nearby. Unlike the previous Bertha capturing mission, this time the big gun is shooting back. And it has only one target in mind - your commander.Have any surviving Pyros and the construction bot set to guard your commander as you begin the long walk south. Don't head straight for the Bertha however, or your mission is likely to end very abruptly. Take a zigzag path, hiding behind hills when possible. Along the way you'll encounter more Zippers and some Hammers. Use the D-gun again and be glad you set up those solar collectors earlier. Once you're close enough, the Bertha simply can't hit you. Walk up and capture it. MISSION 23-The Fortress Falls The computer player has numerous construction units on this map, and will use them to replace destroyed buildings, especially fusion plants and moho mines. You will want to establish one large defensive fort that can cover both the main valley to the north that the computer uses, but also the area to the east where some units will also be sent. This fort should include at least 2 Punishers, and at least 3 Gaat Guns and Pulverizers. It will come under attack by Fidos and Bulldogs, so you need planes on patrol in that area to give advanced warning. Use Avengers rather than Finks for this patrol duty, as they will lend a hand. Keep at least one construction unit on patrol over these defensive structures, as the Pulverizers don't last long if they are getting pounded. Use the Punishers you built to destroy the ARM static defenses near the northern valley, and also to destroy any Spiders on the cliff walls (the Spiders can paralyze your planes). You don't have to expand all the way across the map for metal as you can easilly get a 20+ income in the area you start in after you convert your metal extractors to moho mines. An Intimidator cannon can reach most parts of the map, so use that to target fusion reactors, moho mines and construction plants. ARM has a Bertha cannon of its own in the north east corner, so you should take that out, either with your own cannon, strategic bombers or Rapiers. You will definitely need to build a small force of Vamps, because ARM will use Brawlers, Hawks and Thunder bombers against you. If you have good radar coverage you can intercept any enemy planes with your Vamps outside of your base. If your Hawks are having a hard time, and you have some Hurricane bombers, launch them into the air so that they will start using their air-to-air lasers against the attackers. Once you have crippled the ARM economy and destroyed all their construction units, kill the rest of them with your units of choice (there are a fair few Sentinel towers around, so take care). MISSION 24-Surrounded and Pounded You're in a bad position. Your starting units are damaged, the mesa you start on is surrounded by Arm units and you're vastly outnumbered. The first thing you need to survive is to know where Arm forces are and when they're coming. This obviously calls for radar. Set up radar towers on the east and west sides of the mesa, then start on repairs. While the repairs are going on, have your construction bot start on your usual compliment of structures. Vehicles won't do the job here, so you'll need a K-bot lab and airfield in short order. As usual, Pulverizers are your friends, and you want to have lots of friends. Arm Brawlers will be joining the party shortly, and you want your friends to show them a good time. Solid defenses are vital to your continued existence. Not only will you have to contend with the Brawlers, but an Arm Merl will pepper you base with missiles. Gather a group of AKs and send them down to take it out. You'll lose them in the process, but it's worth it. This should buy you enough time to get an advanced airfield operational and start it turning out large numbers of Rapiers and Vamps. A sizable group of these can easily take control of the battlefield. Like the previous mission, take your Rapiers from target to target, clearing out the Arm vermin. MISSION 25-Empyrrean's Final Stand But first, you must be concerned with simple survival. The last thing you can afford is to draw the attention of Arm's powerful airforce too early, so take your starting force and run for one of the southern corners of the map. There, you should have enough time to get some reasonable base defenses up before the Arm onslaught begins. Start with the usual mix of structures and get some Crashers and Storms out just in case any Arm units happen to stumble onto you early. As soon as you can, start on a two-deep Pulverizer wall around your perimeter with AKs doing the spotting. While that's in progress,begin work toward that all-important advanced construction bot so you can get fusion power up. This time, you'll want at least two fusion plants and enough metal makers to use up the entire output from one of them (about sixteen). Now you should have enough resources coming in to support a pair of advanced airfields. Have one working on Vamps while the other starts on Rapiers. By now you've been fending off raids from Arm forces - don't forget to keep spotters out to let your Pulverizers do their job. If you find an advanced construction bot has nothing to do, set it to work on another fusion plant. Use half the extra power for metal makers and put up a third advanced airfield. From this point on it's a simple job of turning out huge numbers of Rapiers and slowly working your way through Arm's defenses. At first you'll lose quite a few, but it won't take too long to punch a hole in their perimeter. As the Arm units start to dwindle in numbers, be on the lookout for the Arm commander hiding in some trees. You'll need to take him out as well to finish the mission. Once the last Arm unit is gone, you've done it. The galaxy is now yours.