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Superhuman early game strategy and not so early too


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#1 oldfan

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Posted 25 May 2010 - 09:29 AM

A few months ago I started playing the game with the following settings/mods:
  • Funding council income only - this actually makes the game a challenge, now that cash is hard to come by
  • Ranged based accuracy - aimed shot actually means something now. Far away aliens are rarely if ever hit with snap shot which can go down to 7%
  • No save/reload - never really played with it as it is not challenging (like playing poker with no money - you can't lose)

I used to have one or two bases in the beginning though at times this proved to be a problem as far away UFOs usually went about their business without interference from me, or too many night missions. I decided to have a longer research curve and to build two additional bases in the beginnings. My bases coordinates are:
  • North Africa (middle): potential coverage for entire Europe, part of Asia, and much os Africa
  • Central Asia: large land mass and it covers Siberia and South East Asia (future interceptor will also be able to get to Australia without running out of fuel)
  • North America: Covers Greenland (up to Siberia) and North America

My game aims are:
  • Shoot down all UFOs and do all tactical missions
  • The above include night terror missions - however, running away from Cyberdiscs until I have at least personal armor
By covering, I mean potential future cover by a hyper wave decoder.

Two UFOs always appear after 2.5 hours and I track them down using the graphs (I do all of UFO tracking this way). I decided to build 3 bases and having interceptors in them in order to be able to track down and shoot as many UFOs as I can. Also, I don't build alien containment in the first months as my primary goal is to reach a 100 scientists and have power suit researched.

The first technology I research is motion scanner (it used to be laser weapons). I LOVE motions scanners and they are great in order to survive the LZ. I always have a rocket launcher HWP as it has lots of movement (and no stamina), good armor (in the beginning of the game), and can shoot alien hordes near the LZ on terror missions (I hate when that happens).

Ranged based accuracy makes such a HUGE different. I think I have it as having penalties for snap shot after 14 tiles and auto shot after 7 tiles. Over large distances, accuracy can go as low as 7% or something like that (even lower - don't remember but there is "always" a chance for a lucky hit). This makes aimed shot quite important. Also, laser rifle is superb as it gives you two aimed shots.

Anyways, I think carefully about my plan of attack and sweeping the battle scape and I take my time. I use plenty of smoke grenades for cover and am not afraid to go on night missions (okay, I'm a bit afraid). When spotting a small UFO, I always wait for 6 hours after it slows down before shooting it down. The reason being that I want more points for the first month, and I run out of money lots of times (Avalanche missiles are expensive). If it didn't land after 6 hours, it ain't gonna land.

After initial shopping on the first day, I have (after recruitment) 17 scientists and 13 soldiers and around 480K to spare.

Before starting a game (I restarted a few times), I make sure I have some decent shooters with high moral. It may take me 30-60 minutes of restarting the game until I start up with some good soldiers (you don't want to end with 13 guys with 45-55 accuracy).

When sweeping the battle field, I try to look behind EVERY corner (hate nasty surprises) and I equip the craft depending on the terrain (I wish there was a way to distinguish between lots of farms/barns and a total clear grassland map). Rocket launchers are used to demolish barns but they are used VERY carefully. Too many friendly fire.

I have a question about UFO camping. It is a little bit of an exploit. But then again, even if I have to storm a UFO, I would first cover the entire map to make sure nobody sneaks on me from behind. This may take a while. Secondly, it is not my fault that the aliens want to breathe some fresh air after turn 21, right? Besides, I wouldn't mind waiting out besieging them until they run out of food/air.
Third, sometimes the aliens play it clever and don't want to come out (I hate when this happens). This usually means that you have to sacrifice some rookies. A recent tactic of mine was to shoot incendiary rounds (and I finally found a reason to purchase incendiary rockets) through the door (have a rookie or HWP open the door) and cook the aliens. This way, it is true UFO camping. You camp and have a nice bonfire. ROFL

Just was bored at work and decided to drop a few line.

P.S.
Do you consider UFO camping cheating/exploit?

Edited by oldfan, 25 May 2010 - 09:31 AM.


#2 MiniMacker

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Posted 25 May 2010 - 10:11 AM

Naw, I don't consider UFO camping as cheating. Especially not on Superhuman!

Edited by MiniMacker, 25 May 2010 - 10:11 AM.


#3 oldfan

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Posted 25 May 2010 - 10:19 AM

Naw, I don't consider UFO camping as cheating. Especially not on Superhuman!

Well..... one way to look at it is that the poor aliens just crashed or had a long journey. They need to freshen up a little before combat. Let them have a few minutes to relax before they go out.
:-)

I wish there was some special equipment (or explosive charge) to blow the doors out. I know that using UFO Extender you can increase the damage of high explosive, though that will alter game mechanics as you'll be able to blow up more than doors and high explosive will be overpowered.

By the way, does anybody know why sometimes aliens get stuck in the UFO? I hate it when it happens, especially on small scouts. When you open the door it is not uncommon to see 4-6 aliens staring at you. Not to trying to retreat is 95% death wish that will get fulfilled.

#4 MiniMacker

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Posted 25 May 2010 - 04:13 PM

Ah, yeah. I read about it in some recent thread. Apparently their waypoints get interrupted since all the aliens are trying to move at the same time. Technically this should change after turn 20, since their behaviour changes, but I'm not sure if the Aggressive behaviour also uses the same occupied waypoint check.

#5 NKF

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Posted 26 May 2010 - 01:21 AM

Cyberdiscs - you can tackle them easily once you have some large rockets or high explosives on hand. Yes the potential for friendly fire is very high, but think of it as one of the obstacles you need to overcome.

Camping - or I rather prefer to think of it as an ambush. The aliens do it to you when you enter the UFO, so it's fair that you can do it in return.

The crews for most ships will leave eventually given enough time. But there are a few exceptions like the Large Scout and Abductor. I'll mention those two in a bit. Generally, if any aliens appear to get stuck, there are a two things you could try to unstick them before choosing to storm the UFO. First, wait. Wait as long as you need. Let 20 or so turns pass with nothing happening if necessary. Wait until turn 80 even.

One other thing you could try is move some soldiers around the outside of the UFO to see if you can coax them to moving. You could even move a HWP right up against the door and see if that does anything.

If you don't mind cheating - launch area-effect projectiles 'into' the walls along the far edges. Works brilliantly for the medium scout or for getting at the enemies in the bridge of the large scout.

The Large Scout sometimes has one alien that is stuck in the bridge. Not always, but it can happen. To root this one out, go in the UFO, then head up the left passage. Wait in the corner but don't go through the door. If you hear movement during the alien phase, chances are the alien will have moved in your direction. Have someone outside use a motion scanner to check if necessary. Usually it will be perfectly safe for your soldier to walk right through the door. All this is assuming that it is the only alien you are worrying about - if there are several it would change matters entirely!

The Abductor (the * or asterisk shaped UFO) is especially notorious for having a camping alien. For an intact Abductor, The leader is always rooted to the spot right in the middle of the bridge. Facing the only door into the room, at full TUs (aka it's at 100% of its initiative). It's lethal to try and set foot through door. Of course, if you have the heavy plasma, you can cut your way through the back and surprise it. Or stand underneath it and fire an explosive projectile (fire, stun, explosive) directly up at the ceiling.

- NKF
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#6 oldfan

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Posted 26 May 2010 - 07:52 AM

Cyberdiscs - you can tackle them easily once you have some large rockets or high explosives on hand. Yes the potential for friendly fire is very high, but think of it as one of the obstacles you need to overcome.

Camping - or I rather prefer to think of it as an ambush. The aliens do it to you when you enter the UFO, so it's fair that you can do it in return.

The crews for most ships will leave eventually given enough time. But there are a few exceptions like the Large Scout and Abductor. I'll mention those two in a bit. Generally, if any aliens appear to get stuck, there are a two things you could try to unstick them before choosing to storm the UFO. First, wait. Wait as long as you need. Let 20 or so turns pass with nothing happening if necessary. Wait until turn 80 even.

One other thing you could try is move some soldiers around the outside of the UFO to see if you can coax them to moving. You could even move a HWP right up against the door and see if that does anything.

If you don't mind cheating - launch area-effect projectiles 'into' the walls along the far edges. Works brilliantly for the medium scout or for getting at the enemies in the bridge of the large scout.

The Large Scout sometimes has one alien that is stuck in the bridge. Not always, but it can happen. To root this one out, go in the UFO, then head up the left passage. Wait in the corner but don't go through the door. If you hear movement during the alien phase, chances are the alien will have moved in your direction. Have someone outside use a motion scanner to check if necessary. Usually it will be perfectly safe for your soldier to walk right through the door. All this is assuming that it is the only alien you are worrying about - if there are several it would change matters entirely!

The Abductor (the * or asterisk shaped UFO) is especially notorious for having a camping alien. For an intact Abductor, The leader is always rooted to the spot right in the middle of the bridge. Facing the only door into the room, at full TUs (aka it's at 100% of its initiative). It's lethal to try and set foot through door. Of course, if you have the heavy plasma, you can cut your way through the back and surprise it. Or stand underneath it and fire an explosive projectile (fire, stun, explosive) directly up at the ceiling.

- NKF

Oh yes..... I very much use rocket launchers and high explosives against Cyberdiscs. But still, generally speaking, I made myself two rules when using rockets launchers and high explosives:
  • For rocket launchers I always make sure that I have at least 7-9 free tiles ahead of me and that the area is clear. Also, no soldiers are to be in any 30 degree viewpoint of the soldiers firing the rocket.
  • For high explosives, prime/throw them before moving other units if possible. It is a shame if it hits a tree or something only to land near your guys.

As for UFO camping, I don't intend on "cheating". If they don't come out I usually send a scout or two and try opening the doors and see if I can move them/take a shot/throw something in. This might cause aliens to come out as I'm in the vicinity. I recently thought about large incendiary rocket (works very well for medium scout) just by opening the door and running away from there. If some aliens are "smart" and want to remain in there, well..... I guess I have to do SWAT like storming of the UFO - it adds to the game.