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When To Stock-up On Engineers


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#1 Guest_stewart_*

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Posted 07 October 2002 - 10:44 AM

Basically, to start have just enough engineers to build stuff that you will actually use. You have to compromise between. Accepting longer build times and the cost of the engineers. Only once you have Laser Cannons then it is worth it to hire engineers for "making money".

Here are the numbers.

The best item to build for cash which does not require materials is the Laser Cannon. The gross earning per manhour is $97. Next, is the Laser Tank at $96. But reasearch gives you both of these simultaneously so the tank can be ignored. Third is the Motion Scanner at $53.

Now, in the average manmonth one engineers earns $70,567 making Laser Cannons and $38,491 making Motion Scanners. When you subtract their monthly salary ($25,000) the numbers are $45,567 and $13,491.

For now we won't talk about the cost of building extra Workshops and Living Quarters but just for hiring more engineers to fill already available space. Each engineer gets a "hiring bonus" of one months salary ($25,000). So, making Motion Scanners each individual engineer takes 2 months before they start paying for them selves. With Laser Cannons the engineers are already making you money by the end of the month. Early on money is tight it would be better spent elsewhere. However, make sure you have motion scanner researched early since the engineers you do have will need something to do when they are otherwise idle.

Now when expansion of the workforce requires building Workshops and Living Quarters the numbers get worse. I'll leave the actual numbers as an exercise to the reader :rolleyes: and just summarize. The monthly maintenance of the facilities lowers the net earning but with more engineers the cost is spread out and reduces the cost per engineer. So here the lesson is when you do build new workshops and living quarters buy as many engineers as you can to spread out the costs. Still if you build one new Workshop and Living quarters (barring in mind the maintenance cost spread over, say, 50 new engineers) and consider the highering bonus of these 50 engineers then if they are building motion scanners they don't start paying for themselves and the facilities for almost 4 months; with Laser Cannons it's just over one month.

So in short start off with just enough engineers as you need. Wait until you have Laser Cannons before you go on a hiring binge. When you do hire hire in lots as big as you can handle.

#2 adlep

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Posted 07 October 2002 - 11:28 AM

Basically Laser Canons and bunch of Engineers is the way to get rich quick.
It is September 99 in a game and I have already 1 base with 11 workshops and 500 engineers producing few thousands laser cannons a month... That gives me 20 millions of extra pure profit every month!

#3 Guest_stewart_*

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Posted 07 October 2002 - 04:22 PM

How do you get more than 255 engineers at one base?

#4 Guest_jwh_*

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Posted 07 October 2002 - 05:59 PM

good research Stewart. I used to hire as many engineers as possible as soosn as possible and have them make motion scanners. But in light of your research I'll have to make some changes.

#5 adlep

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Posted 07 October 2002 - 07:35 PM

Well, one of my bases doesnt have any hangars at all... All it has is workshops, living quaters, and some general storage buildings.... And bunch of engineers... He he....?
I think that living quaters have capacity of 50, this same thing with workshops, so you would need 10 living quarters and 11 workshops....And some General Storage.. Edit: you have 36 squares in the base....

#6 Guest_stewart_*

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Posted 08 October 2002 - 02:01 AM

I understand that but I thought the game limited you to 255 engineers at one base. On the other hand my version of XCOM is almost old enough to drive. Maybe you have a newer version that raises some of these liimits.

#7 Leo

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Posted 16 December 2002 - 04:18 AM

What happened to Fusion Ball Launchers? The USG said they were the most profitable!

#8 RedNOSceli

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Posted 26 December 2002 - 10:59 PM

I alway found laser pistols very profitable

#9 Guest_stewart_*

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Posted 30 December 2002 - 01:08 PM

What happened to Fusion Ball Launchers? The USG said they were the most profitable!

They require alien alloys. It's cheaper to just sell the captured alien alloys and keep building laser cannons.

#10 Brute

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Posted 06 January 2003 - 04:36 AM

laser cannons rule -just for selling!!! :o
plasma cannon is the king!!!
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#11 Guest_stewart_*

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Posted 06 January 2003 - 08:38 AM

. . . . and fusion ball launchers when you don't have your own UFOs but really really really need to shoot down the Battleship.

#12 Guest_mike[F]_*

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Posted 09 January 2003 - 11:08 AM

I love making profits with laser cannons, feels so good to know that there is world demand for several hundred laser cannons which can only actually be fitted to X-COM craft.. every month! :)

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#13 Guest_stewart_*

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Posted 09 January 2003 - 12:28 PM

Yeah, I found that pretty silly too. It would be interesting if demand and supply affected the price. If so over time it would be better, more realistically, to build probably Laser Rifles or something like that, as their market would be much much harder to flood.

#14 Leo

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Posted 14 January 2003 - 06:01 AM

.... and that would mean that you would get armed civilians!!! the people taking up the taks of self-defence with tanks and laser-rifles....:birthday:
Hm, this could get very confusing when you accidentally stun a civilian .... :wacko:
If such an incident gets known, then battlescape will result in a groundwar with THREE sides.... :blink:

#15 Guest_stewart_*

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Posted 14 January 2003 - 06:14 AM

There are enough soldiers in the world to absorb the output of Laser Rifles. You won't need to see civies with 'em.

#16 Leo

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Posted 14 January 2003 - 06:28 AM

Pity... :D

#17 Radoteur

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Posted 26 March 2003 - 08:52 PM

Motion sensors are pretty good in the beginning, considering that's one of the only things the engineers can make. Of course, it probably isn't a good idea to go out of your way to make tons of motion sensors, that's what it looks like.

Funny thing is that Laser cannons aren't really useful. At least, it doesn't look like they are. Considering how their range = sucks.

#18 Guest_stewart_*

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Posted 28 March 2003 - 03:12 PM

There is a page in my game notes that analyses this very thing. Laser Cannons are very usefull . . . .


for selling. :D

#19 thejer

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Posted 25 September 2003 - 02:31 AM

I thought the biggest money maker was laser RIFLES, behind fusion balls. and in my game, I've had my 200 engineers building this the whole time :) better fix that.

#20 AlienKiller

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Posted 25 September 2003 - 08:45 AM

I agree that laser cannons are probably the best thing you could have your engineers build just for the profit. The require little time to make, and you don't need E150 to build.

#21 Extralucas

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Posted 25 September 2003 - 01:27 PM

Uh... Then gotta go there before they gonna buy out all of those fabulous blaster launchers...

BTW - Powersuits are worst shite to produce. They eat E115 and Alien Alloys worth 50k + and can be sold onlyfor 80k. More money you can earn just by selling E115 and Alien Alloys. (But as we all know E115 is sacred and can not be just sold)
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#22 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 25 September 2003 - 01:40 PM

Yes powersuits are terrible if you want to sell them. But if you want to keep your guys alive, then that is another story.
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#23 Extralucas

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Posted 25 September 2003 - 01:46 PM

Yeah it is. But for keeping 'em alive I prefer fly suits... I know they're expensive but I just discovered E115 isn't so rare. Avenger takes only 12 crystal with him. And that's probablyh my best use for E.
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#24 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 25 September 2003 - 02:53 PM

Heh, I am playing a game where I try to use as little alien tech as possible.

E115 always seems so rare to me, it always seems to be destroyed when I get there :(
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#25 stewart

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Posted 25 September 2003 - 10:26 PM

Uh... Then gotta go there before they gonna buy out all of those fabulous blaster launchers...

BTW - Powersuits are worst shite to produce. They eat E115 and Alien Alloys worth 50k + and can be sold onlyfor 80k. More money you can earn just by selling E115 and Alien Alloys. (But as we all know E115 is sacred and can not be just sold)

Nope the worst is UFO Navigation, you actually LOSE money. You sell them for less than the cost to build.

You can read about it in my new book . ..

"How I turned a Million Dollars in Realestate into $25 in cash!" :blink:
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I'm starting to like the heavy cannon more and more.

#26 Darkside

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Posted 26 September 2003 - 07:31 AM

Yeah it woulda been so cool to see policeman in XCom's cities, equipped with stuff you sell to the world market :naughty:

Hey look, its Officier John and he's... shotting down aliens with a heavy plasma rifle !? :huh?:

Something you Xenocide project members should think about!

I think Apocalypse does this actually... I remember one game I used to sell anythign extra to the world market, including the cloaking devices and personal shields etc... Then one day raiding a Cult of Sirius temple I see them equipped with this stuff. I thought it might be the aliens giving them tech or just a product of matching their level to the elvel of your guys, but in another game I never sold those kind of items and Inever seen cult of sirius gys with that tech anymore. Coincidence ?

#27 Extralucas

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Posted 26 September 2003 - 11:15 AM

Heh, I am playing a game where I try to use as little alien tech as possible.

E115 always seems so rare to me, it always seems to be destroyed when I get there :(

You might want trying following UFO with your skyranger and when it land assualt it. You get entire ufo intact. (You can sell large scout on world market for 887.500$)
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#28 j'ordos

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Posted 26 September 2003 - 05:09 PM

Dunno... alien 18+ entertainment? :wacko: I don't think I want to see an Ethereal and a Muton that close together :blink: :D

If you have two workshops with a full load of engineers you can afford to just pick something out of the list to manufacture, you'll be getting plenty of it anyway. And as long as it's human tech based, it won't gobble up that precious elerium...

Edited by j'ordos, 26 September 2003 - 05:11 PM.

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#29 Extralucas

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Posted 26 September 2003 - 05:12 PM

I would like to point that Ethereal's body mostly dead and he seems to have no 'organs' fo such entertainment. Muton either.

I remember I used to mass produce Heavy Lasers. Quite nice profit from it.
Cost to produce 32K
Sell price 64k

Edited by Extralucas, 26 September 2003 - 05:13 PM.

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#30 Extralucas

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Posted 26 September 2003 - 05:55 PM

If you say so (Im not convinced but disgussion is pointless :wacko: ).

HP is another type of weapon I couldn't get convinced to. Their damage is way too big for common alien, who can be killed with a laser rifle. Besides HP demands clips, and that would mean Im always afraid that I will get shortage someday. I could manfacture new ones, but that seems to be wasting of E. (I started to think this way after producing 80 clips, and noticing my squad wasted nearly all of 'em after only few missions)
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#31 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 26 September 2003 - 05:59 PM

Well, when mutons come knocking, you really need that extra firepower. Although a heavy laser can work almost as well (especially with xcomutil.)

I never seem to run out of clips unless I go on a killing frenzy, shooting random objects. Perhaps it is because aliens after only a few months almost always carry hps and those hps come with clips for me to put to good use.
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#32 Guest_Jim69_*

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Posted 26 September 2003 - 06:31 PM

I only ever use a combination of laser rifles and heavy plasma's. And then of cause a couple of backup BB's :D With the flying suits they rarely get a hit on me, I'm like that annoying fly who always flies right in your face and then buggers off again :D

#33 stewart

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Posted 26 September 2003 - 10:32 PM

It seems miceless has disappeared. Extralucas and J'ordos could you sweep through the X1 forums for garbage please.

Thanks!
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I'm starting to like the heavy cannon more and more.

#34 sir_schwick

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 12:48 PM

But what is the most profitable item per engineer-hour that requires Alien Alloy? What would be the profit per engineer-hour if you include manufacturing AA and if you already have plenty?

#35 stewart

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Posted 09 December 2004 - 06:53 PM

If you must manufacture AA first it's definitely not worth building for money. If you have AA as booty, I haven't actually done the math, though I suspect it's still not better than Laser Cannons and selling the booty. IIRC there is a bug where to make fusion ball launchers requires 1 AA per lot (NKF will confirm this I'm sure :rolleyes: ).
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#36 Red Stone

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Posted 11 March 2005 - 05:31 AM

^ The bug occurs on my UFO CE. I used to manufacture 100 Alien Alloys, then 100 Fusion Launchers, but after a few months the General Stores crammed up, and I go to check . . . to find 400+ AAs sitting in there. o_O;;;

EDIT: What is the ideal soldier-to-scientist-to-engineer ratio for the different phases of the game (early, middle, late) of your choice?

Edited by Red Stone, 11 March 2005 - 05:46 AM.


#37 NKF

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Posted 11 March 2005 - 07:20 AM

Ratios eh? I couldn't give any exact details, but:

Really early: Soldiers 8, scientists 32, Engineers 10 (okay, so these are exact)

Early: Soldier 10 to 20, Scientists 50, Engineers 0 to 10

Middle: Soldiers 20 to 30, scientists 50, Engineers 40 to 48

Late: Soldiers 20 to 30 + 10 + (8 * 6), scientists 50, Engineers 50 - 90

Really Late: Soldiers 20 to 30 + 10 + (8 * 6), scientists 0, Engineers 200 - 240

As for soldiers - in a perfect world, I'd have all the numbers available. I generally have a few unmanned bases actually, so the number's really something like 20 to 30 + 10 + (8 * 2 to 3)

As you can see, I take a rather relaxed approach to research. I'm not in a hurry to hire massive research teams because I can quickly do the few bits of research that I want and am pretty much set for the rest of the game.

Engineers on the other hand take more of a priority later in the game when money literally starts to spill out of your ears. All they mainly do is to keep producing a good supply of personal armour (mainly), replacement lasers, tanks, stun/blaster bombs - basically all the consumables.

There - a little insight (albeit imprecise) into NKF's normal playing habits. ;) (which is not to say it's perfect. It works for me - it may or may not work for others)

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Edited by NKF, 11 March 2005 - 07:21 AM.

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#38 stewart

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Posted 11 March 2005 - 10:25 AM

Ratios?

Soldiers: As you build a base put in some guards ( I use about 10). In the mean time you will have probably one or two strike teams. That means 6-28 soldiers for assults.
:professor: Click on the professor regarding base defense.

Scientists: Whereas soldiers and engineers earn you money scientist do not. Buy only what you can afford.

Engineers: Please read the first post of this thread.
:professor: Click on the professor regarding hiring engineers
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#39 Pherdnut

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Posted 09 February 2006 - 10:06 AM

I always shoot for 150 scientists ASAP. It's expensive but it lets you sell certain items a lot sooner.

#40 stewart

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Posted 09 February 2006 - 11:38 AM

Umm . . . . you can sell stuff without knowing what it is.
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#41 Uta Heinsch

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Posted 14 February 2006 - 11:30 AM

Umm . . . . you can sell stuff without knowing what it is.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I think he means stuff like Laser Cannons which can't be sold until they can be made and can't be made until they're successfully researched.

At least, that's what I'm assuming he meant.


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#42 Oldblue153

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Posted 14 February 2006 - 05:31 PM

I've always had a bit of a moral dilema regarding building Lazer Cannons for resale..who on earth would buy all these items?. It kinda felt like a cheat to me.

Of course you gotta have those Manufacturers do something when they are not producing armor etc so I let em build Lazer Rifles...not the best for profit a full lab probably barely covers the cost of the Engineers to produce them.
I feel that the demand for Lazer Rifles in the "real world" would most certainly surpass that of the Lazer Cannon.
Realistically the Lazer Rifle is the best bet for mass production the reusable clips,weight, accuracy etc make it an ideal weapon for Joe Public in an alien infested wotrld.

I woulda been much happier with the Lazer Tech tree if it had more realistically defined supply and demand you simply couldnt build enough Lazer Rifles to satisfy the Planets needs but them cannons? ..................well

Reduce profits from Lazer Cannons and Increase Profits from Lazer Rifles

#43 stewart

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Posted 15 February 2006 - 11:53 AM

It would be interesting for Xenocide to have the price decline or rise based on how much has been sold recently.
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#44 Sharp

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Posted 15 February 2006 - 02:56 PM

Well I made one big post about why Fusion Ball Launchers are better then Laser Cannons for manufacture, mainly looking at the unofficial strat guide, however in the profit table shown there it doesn't account in the production of the fusion ball launcher of the alien alloys. So it is much much better just to build laser cannons and sell alien alloys rather then build fusion ball launchers (unless you can do that bug to make a set only using one alloy)

per Unit
Laser Cannon Profit - $29,000
Fusion Ball Launcher Profit - $32,600*

*including 6.5k loss from losing alien alloy

Engineer Hours
Laser Cannon - 300
Fusion Ball Launcher - 400

Now say you have one workshop with 44 engineers (laser cannon & fusion ball launcher both take 6 workspace).

Thats 9.1 hours to make one fusion ball launcher
6.8 hours to make one laser cannon

assume its a 30-day month, so 44 engineers means in that month that 31680 engineer hours.

That is 79 Fusion Ball Launchers and 105 Laser Cannons
79*32600 = $2,575,400
105*29000 = $3,045,000

Laser Cannons Win. $469,600 difference

#45 stewart

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Posted 15 February 2006 - 04:00 PM

It's worse than that, did you account for the time it takes to create the alien alloys, or are you just refering to captured alien alloys.

And yes the "bug" changes everything.
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#46 Sharp

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Posted 16 February 2006 - 06:56 AM

I was just referring to captured alien alloys, there always seems to be a surplus. Now if you manufactured as well, thats just far far worse.

If the bug is included then it puts fusion ball launchers far more favourably.

#47 Dover

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Posted 20 February 2006 - 04:18 AM

You know, even with captured alien alloys, I'm not sure you're taking into account the profit you'll make with the laser cannons if you just sell the AAs. I'm pretty sure there's a thread floating around here that proved the most cost-efficiant way to deal with AAs is to sell them straight as opposed to making them into something, then selling.

And if not, I'm sure someone will post all the numbers in pretty columns eventually...

Edit: The "bug" included, the best thing to sell would be hovertank plasmas or hovertank launchers. They fetch close to $1,000,000 apeice, and take only a day for 50 engineers to make (12 hours for 100, 6 hours for my 200 enginner setup).

Edited by Dover, 20 February 2006 - 04:19 AM.


#48 Blehm 98

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Posted 20 February 2006 - 09:18 AM

well then i really feel like cheating - I usually only use it on 2 FB hovertanks and 2-3 plasma hovertanks, and keep them, and thats it, but i don't sell them


someone should do a calculation based on teh average profit per mission to see how much a plasma hovertank is really worth
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#49 Sharp

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Posted 20 February 2006 - 01:43 PM

You know, even with captured alien alloys, I'm not sure you're taking into account the profit you'll make with the laser cannons if you just sell the AAs. I'm pretty sure there's a thread floating around here that proved the most cost-efficiant way to deal with AAs is to sell them straight as opposed to making them into something, then selling.

And if not, I'm sure someone will post all the numbers in pretty columns eventually...

Edit: The "bug" included, the best thing to sell would be hovertank plasmas or hovertank launchers. They fetch close to $1,000,000 apeice, and take only a day for 50 engineers to make (12 hours for 100, 6 hours for my 200 enginner setup).

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Erm, im not too sure what you really mean by this post Dover, I've shown the profit Laser Cannon's make over Fusion Ball Launchers (Craft) by putting the 6.5k you lose from not selling the alien alloy in the Fusion Ball Launcher cost.

Also Hovertanks are terrible to sell, Launcher costs 900k to make and sells for 1043k, it also uses up 25 elerium and 5 Alien Alloys which is 125k of elerium and 32.5k of alien alloys.

What that basically means is that you are losing more money then you are making from selling hovertanks. Laser Tanks on the otherhand are better by taking 500k to build and selling for 594k, still nowhere as good as Fusion Ball Launchers or even motion scanners let alone Laser Cannons. If you have the "bug" it is far better to sell Fusion Ball Launchers as they only take 400 engineer hours compared to the 1400 for the Hovertank Launcer.

#50 Dover

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Posted 20 February 2006 - 03:09 PM

My bad, sharp. You did include it. I didn't see your astrek thingy. Anyways:

Why making Hovertanks with the bug is more useful than making FBLs with the bug

To keep it short, and sweet, and to the point, HWPs have a use, whereas FBLs...not as much.

In order to make an FBL useful (For yourself, not for sale purposes), you have to constantly waste E-115 to make ammo for them, and what for? Twin plasma beams (Even a single plasma beam) does what the FBL can, and more.

HWPs on the other hand, are dead useful for base defense, where you really don't want to risk any loss of life over anything as stupid as some angry floaters. Even the Launcher variety is useful, in that even if you don't have ammo manufactured for it, it can still participate in base defense.

After producing some hovertanks, I ususually keep the last batch for myself and send 3 to each intercept base. After producing some FBLs, I sit in a corner and cry, because I have no use for them at all.

/*Actually, I lied. I do make put FBLs on my lightnings, because single plasma beams are a bit slow for my taste*/

But what about selling?

With HWPs and the bug, you always know how much profit you're making--an even million apeice. This lets me produce the exact number I need, saving valuable engineer hours, and lets me move on to something more important (Like Avenger-54)

But they take too long!!

200 engineers make 1 hovertank plasma in 6 hours. That isn't too long.

Edited by Dover, 20 February 2006 - 03:13 PM.