1.) Starting a new game:
Restart several times until you get the base you want - the available options are always the bases you can buy as new bases.
Try to get a warehouse, as slums are extremely prone to catastrophical breakdown when a hostile organization shoots you.
2.) Build a second Quantum Physics lab and a second workshop IMMEDIATELY - Q-Phys is by far the most important research part of the game, and you cannot ever have too many engineers.(And getting the advanced workshop takes at least until week three)
3.) Research & Getting there:
Ignore the Brainsucker Launcher and only research it if you ever get a downtime with no new aliens to dissect.
Capture a live multiworm as soon as anyhow realistically possible (with other words, the moment you get the alien transport module manufactured)
Get a dead multiworm and a dead hyperworm too, as well as alien eggs.
Research the hyperworms immediately, as they give you The Alien Genetic Structure - which in turn yields Bio-Warfare.
After the first alien research, get the Advanced Bio-Lab
Meanwhile, back in Quantum physics: research what you can, when you can. In the first three or four days, there won't be much to research, in fact, nothing except the Dimension Gates.
Shoot down & capture UFOs as much as you can, for the sooner you get an UFO with the three modules (propulsion, control & energy) the sooner you get the advanced workshop
if you have the choice between the disruptor gun and one of the three modules, GO FOR THE MODULE!
Why, you ask? One of the three modules yields the Advanced Q-Phys lab, the most important place of research in the game (3/4 of all alien equipment comes from here, from manheld devices to craft weaponry)
By now your second Q-Phys lab should be finished, and if you've been consistently scanning the new recruits for scientists (enter your base, click on the topmost button on the right side, the soldier with the $ sign on it, select the third button on the right side, quantum physicists) every day, you should have at least five new recruits with skill above 85.
sack everyone below that immediately and get a replacement - if you're building a laboratory and see someone with 95 or higher skill, recruit them immediately - a bit of cash wasted for the next three days is better than a lack of skilled scientists. In my current game I have ten Q-Physicists, six of which have skill 100 and 4 have skill 99 in one big lab, and the second, small lab has five with skills from 95-98.
Use the first lab with the "better" scientists to tackle bigger projects (alien weapons and whatnot) and the second lab for the smaller projects, like the remaining two pieces of alien craft equipment.
If you're going really good and got lucky, you'll even get a small or medium disruptor beam from the crafts , usually a small one from the purple disc, the Transporter, which is type 3 and one of the most important crafts in the game to shoot d own and capture in combat and another small one or a medium one from the green flattened cone-thingies, which are Fast Attack crafts, amongst the most dangerous within the first three weeks of playing, and if they're shielded (if their health bar is blue and has to be depleted before actually tackling the ships themselves, they're shielded and a must to go onto a SARS mission (slaughter aliens, recover ship) because you will get a small disruptor shield off of them.
So, now we have two labs of Q-Scientists pumping out the research, one of them going for equipment, and the other for alien parts.
Do -not- go and study the alien craft types immediately - while the fluff is interesting, their research synergies will not come into play until much, much later.
Finish the three Alien Ship Parts (propulsion, energy, control) and get to the Dimension Probe.
Researching the Dimension Probe is a crucial point in your development, as it allows you to get the Advanced Workshop.
As with the other two advanced buildings, the advanced WS has the incredible advantage of -doubling- the manpower available for a project.
And to make it easier for you to read, a little summary.
(italics denote having to "liberate" it from alien craft first)
Alien Propulsion -> Advanced Q-Phys Lab
Alien Energy Source -> Advanced Q-Phys Lab
Alien Control -> Advanced Q-Phys Lab
(each of the three alone gives the Q-Phys lab)
Alien Propulsion, Alien Control, Alien Energy Source -> Dimension Probe
Dimension Probe -> Advanced Workshop
Dimension Probe + Alien Craft Type 3 -> Biotrans
Biotrans + Alien Craft type 5 -> Explorer
Explorer + Alien Craft type 7 -> Retaliator
Retaliator + Alien Craft type 9 -> Annihilator (the most awesome thing since the creation of the laser rifle in X-Com: EU)
Small Disruptor Beam -> Medium Disruptor Beam -> Heavy Disruptor Beam -> Largy Disruption Shield
[i]Medium Disruptor Beam -> [i]Small Disruption Shield -> X-Com Disruptor Armor
All other kinds of craft weaponry, like Disruptor Inversion Bomb, Disruptor Multi-Bomb, Disruptor Stasis-Field and Cloaking Field have to be stole... errr... liberated first and then researched.
So, that was the craft stuff. Now, lets take a look at the other really invalueable stuff:
All agent gear requires you getting it off the aliens first, with the exception of the X-Com disruptor armor, which comes from craft gear research anyway.
So far, I've seen no synergies between field gear, all you have to do is capture one intact (which is extremely difficult with disruptor body shields without the all-powerful toxigun) and then shove it to the scientists.
Yay us! But what about Biochemistry?
While the Techeads go all crazy about cool alien stuff, the biochemists grin evilly as they get the hacksaw and advance onto your newest captures.
The two worms, Multi- and Hyperworm, are amongst the most important research topics the biochemists can -ever- come around to.
You capture a live multiworm and research it, you get a dead multiworm and live hyperworms in the alien containment, which you can in turn research.
But the first thing you must research are both forms of the hyperworm, which easier done than said - most of the early missions have two multiworms, so stun one for capture after shooting it up with the machine guns and slaughter the other and toast the small worms.
Any kind of alien research, be it living or dead-> Advanced Bio-Lab
Dead Alien Egg, Dead Multiworm, Dead Hyperworm ->
The Alien Genetic Structure --->
Advanced Biolab, 8d construction time -> Biological Warfare
Biological Warfare is the most important research you can do short of disruptor shields for agents and craft.
After this you can build the Toxigun (small blue pistol) and Toxin A in the Workshop.
If you got two workshops, have one build the toxiguns and the other AT LEAST 100 toxigun clips. Ammo consumption is insane, with a rate of fire that borders on machine gun speeds from those pistols.
Alien Egg + Multiworm + Hyperworm + Chrysalis + their Autopsies ->
The Alien Life Cycle
The Alien Life Cycle ->
Toxin B is your best friend throughout most of the game.
It is easily manufactured, and kills all but the most powerful lifeforms within moments, as anthropods and spitters usually die from one good hit, skeletoids most of the time need two hits and only Megaspawn and Psimorphs survive more than three hits of Toxin-B. Which is good, since six agents dualwielding Toxiguns requires two workshops building clips almost non-stop.
Okay, if you get around Toxin B, all you ahve to do is to capture all other aliens in the game alive and research them and their dead, broken carcasses afterwards.
All Aliens Except For The Evil Queenspawn And Their Cut-Up Carcasses -> The Real Alien Threat -> Toxin C
Once you have toxin C, fire up the forges, pump out several hundred clips and then have twelve agents with dual toxiguns on full auto march through everything aliens in the game. One hit kills everything except Megaspawns and psimorphs.
Queenspawn + Queenspawn Autopsy -> Anti-Alien gas. I still prefer toxin C dualwielding to gas cannons *sigh*
4.) General advice:
Never ever let your specialists go idle unless their place of work is being built and they have nothing else to do.
Research to the advanced workplaces as fast as anyhow reasonably possible. You need the added manpower
5.) Shooting down crafts:
Sell your Valkyrie, all ground vehicles and buy lots of hoverbikes&cars.
Give Janitor rockets to the bikes, set their altitude setting to the max (select the bikes by ctrl-clicking on all of them and then set the right slider on the bottom to the highest)
Give Bolter lasers to the Hovercars, set their altitude to the lowest (like before, but the lowest setting)
By doing this you minimize cityscape damage, which is unavoidable.
Don't shoot down craft if you must not or they are in the middle of the city - destroying the people tubes makes transtellar angry, which is a RBT (Really Bad Thing) to happen.
Mh... I think thats it .... :c
Edited by Cornuthaum, 31 December 2006 - 06:08 PM.