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Base setup for Defense


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#51 stewart

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Posted 16 January 2008 - 07:12 PM

An expansion base of mine was assaulted early in my most recent game. The five rifle-toting rookies were only able to survive thanks to the hangar/access lift isolation layout. The bumbling Floaters, unable to get off any grenade tosses, were mown down by a steady barrage of reaction fire. Thank you.


No you survived because it was only floaters! :P

Has anyone made use of the Base Disjoint Bug in their designs?

For example, in Stewart's classic design with the Access Lift/Missile Defense choke at the top, and the Hangars down the left, you could add a module in the bottom row, bridging the gap between the bottom Hangar and the rest of the base.

Benefits:

  • An extra module space, always a good thing.
  • Provides a backup path to the Access Lift, so you don't lose your whole base if your choke point (ie Missile Defense) is destroyed.
  • Thanks to the Disjoint Bug, invaders cannot use this to bypass your choke point.
  • Yet, you can still cut through to the Hangar if you really want to.
The only potential downside is you could have agents trapped in here at the start of the base defense, but as long as it's not General Stores or Living Quarters, this should not be a real problem.

Seems like all pros and no cons, yet I've not seen this suggested anywhere. Am I missing something?

I've incorporated this idea into several of my bases, but so far none have been attacked yet to give it a real trial by fire.


I used to for the reason you state, extra module. Anouther added benift is if the row of hangars is along the bottom or east side, the bug allows only /one/ access way between the hangars. So when you go to flush them out (and you will) you don't have to cover both access ways; no sneak behinds, but the double door thingie (if you use the east side) become a closet. Which mean you have to bother to walk up to it and look; groan! I locate in the place I do now because of the location of the stairway in the missile defense.

The general layout I'm talking about is basically Stewart's "Research Base (Fusion Def.)" one in the lower right here:

http://www.xcomufo.c...c...=post&id=16

I'm not sure I understand, are you saying if the Missile Defense in that is destroyed, you wouldn't lose the base?

What I'm talking about is adding a single module on the bottom row, between the Hangar and the Fusion Defense. I don't want to avoid the disjoint bug, I want to use it as a defensive feature. :) I do make sure I don't build it until I know I will have Blaster Launcher available for emergency cut-through if needed.

But generally, I'm thinking I shouldn't ever need to... I can't imagine enough soldiers spawning in the sealed module to make a base defense unwinnable. But as I said, this is all theory so far, since I haven't had a base with this concept attacked yet. I'll be sure to report my findings when that happens. :)


If the missile defense is destroyed the rest of the base (ie that not attached to the access lift) is destroyed. If however you are left with connexion via ia disjoint base segment your base will survive. On the other hand, if you cant dig through you will lose the base . . . . . voluntarily.
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I'm starting to like the heavy cannon more and more.

#52 Zombie

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Posted 17 January 2008 - 12:01 AM

They take a bit more effort, but tank laser/plasma beams and heavy plasmas are also capable of digging through base walls if you're out of or have not yet researched blaster bombs. I might be mistaken, but I think the plain vanilla heavy laser might cut it too.

Right, but what happens when you cut through the protective metal wall? I'm pretty sure you can't burrow through dirt with even a Heavy Plasma. That's what the Blaster Launcher is for. :wink1:

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A soldier's death is never in vain if it makes the formula more plain.
A few dozen make a better case for refining that third decimal place.
They call me Zombie because I don't sleep, as I slowly struggle to climb this heap,
of corpses, data points, and trials, but from the top - I'll see for miles!


#53 NKF

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Posted 17 January 2008 - 11:09 PM

Perhaps not with the heavy lasers, but I do recall having played a game where I had to use heavy plasmas to dig through the walls to get at some isolated aliens. No blaster bombs available at this time. Bad base design, a series of single modules along the right edge.

Now that I recall, I did have laser tanks at the time. Do they fare any better? This was some 3 or 4 years back so recollection is a bit hazy.

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Edited by NKF, 17 January 2008 - 11:22 PM.

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#54 Zombie

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Posted 18 January 2008 - 12:16 AM

My recollection must have been just as hazy, NKF. Heavy Plasmas can dig through metal walls and dirt. I ran a Tank/Laser Cannon around in a base defense mission to see how powerful it's weapon was. Yup, it too can cut through both surfaces, it just takes a little bit longer than the HP. Haven't tried the Heavy Laser yet, but the Plasma Rifle with 5 pts less damage can't punch through so I'd assume no. ;)

- Zombie
The Mr. Grognard of X-COM

Zombie: Empirical data's your only man, when formulating a research plan.
A soldier's death is never in vain if it makes the formula more plain.
A few dozen make a better case for refining that third decimal place.
They call me Zombie because I don't sleep, as I slowly struggle to climb this heap,
of corpses, data points, and trials, but from the top - I'll see for miles!


#55 stewart

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Posted 28 January 2008 - 06:06 PM

I took a laser tank into an alien base once, I managed to shoot a hole in the protective outer wall on the lower level of the command center with it; it only took about 300 shoots, but (like when Rome laid seige to Carthage) the damm wall finally did fall.

Note: in Romes case the wall's of Carthage were so well constucted it was said one would have to bombard them day and night for a decade to bring them down, and, well, the Romans being what they were bombarded them day and night for a decade and by George if they didnt fall afterwards.
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I'm starting to like the heavy cannon more and more.

#56 Zombie

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Posted 02 February 2008 - 01:08 AM

Laser tanks only have something like 255 shots though. Did you use a couple of them or just one?

The probability of getting the laser beam to cut through a wall isn't all that low as I frequently am able to use a Heavy Plasma (with 5pts more damage) to slice through alien base walls within one clip of 35 shots. :)

Okay, I just ran some numbers and came up with a probability of 2.7-3.6% depending on rounding and damage range. Seems about right. ;)

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Edited by Zombie, 02 February 2008 - 01:17 AM.
calculation

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Zombie: Empirical data's your only man, when formulating a research plan.
A soldier's death is never in vain if it makes the formula more plain.
A few dozen make a better case for refining that third decimal place.
They call me Zombie because I don't sleep, as I slowly struggle to climb this heap,
of corpses, data points, and trials, but from the top - I'll see for miles!


#57 stewart

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Posted 04 February 2008 - 05:36 PM

One tank. I didnt truely count shots but it seemed like forever. On the other hand 255 shots at (what) 3 per turn is 80 turns or so that would seem like forever I suppose.
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I'm starting to like the heavy cannon more and more.

#58 Morken

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Posted 15 October 2008 - 06:28 AM

Except your initial base, what is the layout you use for a strikebase?

My second base is always a no-hangar factory in the south pole, on that peninsula that is near South America.
It later gets a hyper Dec so I can see into the tip of South America as my South America base is further north.

So this layout is for my third base onward which I always seem to have Hyper researched.

Recently, I tried this layout, but am considering the second one

Posted Image Posted Image

In the first base:
Airlock, MissileD, General, then 3 modules at about the same time, hangar+Living+Hyper.

In the second base:
The Airlock is more central, the development faster, but you risk a two way fight and the sniper alley is less long.

====================================

I been thinking maybe the second layout is better for the first 4 developments stages.

The <forever empty> place south of the small radar would guarantee no soldier ever has to start facing an alien.
Also because you have soldiers both sides of the Small radar, when you eat a blaster bomb (you never can tell), you lose less.
I know, you can only snipe from module 5 safely, the rest may be within 20 squares depending on the smoke but overall, I think its better.

1) Feedback?
Only people who actually know about base defence need reply.

2) Small Radar or Missile Defence?
If you f*ck up inside the Missile Defence or a Muton gets in, you are in deep shuckeroonies as most of the base could be lost. I only play superhuman no-reloads and the mutons walk a looong way. I just got my donkey kicked you see from base layout #1. I deserted the Missile defence immediately thinking they couldn't round the corner and walk up in a single phase. How wrong, somehow they did exactly this and the mutons shot up the missiles from inside. I won the defence, but lost most of the base and quit the game. The Small Radar module doesnt seem a magnet for mutons as I have never seen em run up the stairs so I'm thinking I prefer this module next to the Airlock.
Do the aliens run up the Small Radar and shoot it up as well?

PS- I wish I did not have to use the image hosting but the formatting on this forum is crappy and if I just pasted my layout as you saw it, it comes out in a bad way, how do I fix this?

Edited by Morken, 15 October 2008 - 06:48 AM.


#59 stewart

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Posted 15 October 2008 - 10:03 AM

Always always always have at least one hangar, even if the damn thing is left empty. Otherwise the bugs will spawn anywhere: the pool table, the pool, the commanders desk, the shed where you keep the base lawn mower etc. and the choke point become meaningless. I see you are using the core of my chokepoint design: missile defense with general stores to the east and the lift to the north. I prefer the hangars stacked to the west rather than the north because as you go to flush them out the triple wide doors dont make closets for cyberdisks and the like. Plus with the doors you can stage your squad better as you move from hangar to hangar. Using the north south arrangement you also get to have your choke point 1 square closer to the middle without ruining the "snipper alley"

If you are going to put bases near the poles then put them directly on the poles. Aircraft sent from them will get to their targets by folowing approximate great circle routes (more efficient). The pathfinding algorythm of the game treats the world as a flat map with the poles as lines rather than points. Therefore east/west component of calculate paths tend to stray from great circle routes. If your interceptions are for the most part north south then this fools the program into more or less calculating an approximate great circle route for the path of the aircraft. The other benefit is that in the PC version of the game (as opposed to pocket UFO) the aircraft have excellent ranges so polar base can provide secondary coverage to their hemisphere, say when you need to stack interceptors or the local interceptors is waiting in line at the gas station.

In other news. I'm reasearching nonchoke point designs. They have benefits: not only do they build faster, but you get more modules . . . .duh! With choke points you typically have 5 dirts; times 8 bases and that's 40 dirts. Thats more than a base of dirt!!!!! Buuuut then there's the defense thing. I'm still looking into it but I'm leaning to all my bases not having choke points except for my depot.

Oh and I'm thinking of changing my overall base scheme
from Lab + 2 Large AirBase + 2 Depots + 2 Factories + 1 Psionic School
to having 1 Depot plus three large air bases the rest the same, changing the depot into an aircraft repair facility instead. Broken aircraft can be transfered you see :naughty:

I still like having two polar bases (as Strike bases). Other well respected contributers do not and prefer to cover more paying territory. In pocket UFO you are forced to have no polar bases as it uses a flat map. WHICH SUCKS!
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I'm starting to like the heavy cannon more and more.

#60 Morken

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Posted 15 October 2008 - 10:48 AM

Stewart you didn't address some of my questions...

* 3 Hangars needed. On superhuman, I think you need all 3 hangars or you risk getting aliens spawn on your soldier points.

* Dead on turn #1. If you put hangars in the centre and surround em with modules that are NOT missile defence or small radar, the game begins with soldiers in plain sight of aliens. This means as you turn and move, it triggers their reaction fire with 100% Time units. Is this your Idea of fun?

* Do not place bases right on the poles. If an alien craft is searching about with an interceptor tailing, and the UFO gets too close and you decide to shoot it down, you get a wreck near the pole. Then, when your skyranger is going to the salvage, it is hard to see if the mission is night or day. Better to move the base a bit off the pole. If you need the aircraft to fly straight, just move em in sections. Anyway Ive had success in the past with pole placement for base #1 as the ice maps are very easy and fast. I think all UFO's start and end their flight at a pole don't they? thats gotta be a plus.

* Only 2 base designs.
Depot, which is one Hanger plus choc-a-block full of general stores, workshops for laser canon, and living quarters
Non-Depot, which is 3 Hangers and easily enough room for anything else including 2-4 PSI schools. Dedicated PSI schools is idiotic as your soldiers will be near their craft waiting for missions or repeatedly raiding some floater base, right? Besides it will be the strike bases that get attacked by the aliens so that is where you want the masses of soldiers.

Stewart how on earth do you take a screenshot of the XCOM base? When I try on windows, and then paste onto a paint doc, it comes up screwed. How do you do it?

Edited by Morken, 15 October 2008 - 11:03 AM.


#61 Admiral Harkov

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Posted 15 October 2008 - 11:09 AM

I just found out one thing.

I had an early attack on my base with the safe design, three hangars below, the elevator and the rest above it, by sectoids. Defence was rather easy. Send proximity grenade before the door and hit turn. Check with tank if there's any alien that passed to shoot it down. Once there seem to be just a few aliens start to hunt them.

Then I needed a module, but all squares off hangars were being built. meaning either I had to wait 20 days, for that was the remaining time for the more advanced building, or make it beside the hangar and elevator.

Then more sectoids came to my base. Urgh, that was a lot tougher, to top it half of my men were not back yet from a crash site and half of the ones I had were wounded, so I I fought with ten soldiers (roughly the same I had during first attack) and one tank/cannon. I barely made it, losing all soldiers but one. Granted, half of the losses happened when there was just the commander using all psi attacks he could, a couple cyberdisks and one hidding sectoid that took my storming soldiers from behind, but in the first I had no losses. Anyway, it looks like it is indeed as a rule that adding a module beside the elevator connecting to the hangars increases the difficulty a good deal.

Edited by Admiral Harkov, 15 October 2008 - 11:11 AM.


#62 Zombie

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Posted 15 October 2008 - 03:42 PM

* 3 Hangars needed. On superhuman, I think you need all 3 hangars or you risk getting aliens spawn on your soldier points.

On Superhuman you really only need 2 Hangars. 15 spawn points per Hanger + 8 for the Access Lift = 23. (Max aliens on Superhuman base defense = 28). So 2 Hangars + the Access Lift gives 38 nodes which is more than enough. Depending on variability on the number of aliens spawned, you could make do with only one Hangar on Superhuman if you don't mind the occasional alien spawning in your General Stores modules. ;)

* Dead on turn #1. If you put hangars in the centre and surround em with modules that are NOT missile defence or small radar, the game begins with soldiers in plain sight of aliens. This means as you turn and move, it triggers their reaction fire with 100% Time units. Is this your Idea of fun?

Usually not. But just turning doesn't precipitate reaction fire. You have to move. I turn my guys to face the Hangars on round one (if they aren't already facing there to begin with) then start shooting if there is an alien looking at you. If most of the aliens are turned away, I just get out of the hallway and hunker down till the next round. You may get killed in either of these scenarios so it isn't for the weak of heart. This type of base design is geared more to veteran soldiers wearing armor than rookies with just t-shirts. Earlier in the game, you may be better off using a "safer", more defensive base design.

* Do not place bases right on the poles. If an alien craft is searching about with an interceptor tailing, and the UFO gets too close and you decide to shoot it down, you get a wreck near the pole. Then, when your skyranger is going to the salvage, it is hard to see if the mission is night or day. Better to move the base a bit off the pole. If you need the aircraft to fly straight, just move em in sections. Anyway Ive had success in the past with pole placement for base #1 as the ice maps are very easy and fast. I think all UFO's start and end their flight at a pole don't they? thats gotta be a plus.

UFO's don't all start or end at the poles. They can spawn wherever they want and disappear anywhere too. You bring up a good point about polar landscape being in darkness most of the time. When I used to build bases at the poles, I'd just shoot stuff down and didn't worry about visiting any crash sites too much. Fighting in the dark is always a pain in the neck and I'd rather not do those missions unless absolutely necessary. ^_^

Stewart how on earth do you take a screenshot of the XCOM base? When I try on windows, and then paste onto a paint doc, it comes up screwed. How do you do it?

F12 takes a targa (.tga) screenshot and puts it in your main game directory. :)

- Zombie
The Mr. Grognard of X-COM

Zombie: Empirical data's your only man, when formulating a research plan.
A soldier's death is never in vain if it makes the formula more plain.
A few dozen make a better case for refining that third decimal place.
They call me Zombie because I don't sleep, as I slowly struggle to climb this heap,
of corpses, data points, and trials, but from the top - I'll see for miles!


#63 stewart

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Posted 15 October 2008 - 05:09 PM

Stewart you didn't address some of my questions...

Sorry 'bout that.

"Do they attack small radar"? I seem to remember that the answer is yes.

"My central airlock design doesnt have as good a snipper alley"! In your central air lock design if snipper alley was North south on the access point it wouldnt be so bad. And heck while were at it if you the rotate your design counter clockwise by 90 degrees then the "new" alley is e/w

by the way have you grabbed my unfinished starting base designer?

As it stands you can view the floor plans of a base and rotate or flip it.

Oh BTW if you stack the hangars to the west then your "forever empty" spot corresponds with a dirt spot, so you get a module back. :naughty:

* 3 Hangars needed. On superhuman, I think you need all 3 hangars or you risk getting aliens spawn on your soldier points.


What Zombie said. Notice in my game note and my avatar at least 2 Hangars, perhaps I should've have said at least 2 hangars last time, my oopsie!

* Dead on turn #1. If you put hangars in the centre and surround em with modules that are NOT missile defence or small radar, the game begins with soldiers in plain sight of aliens. This means as you turn and move, it triggers their reaction fire with 100% Time units. Is this your Idea of fun?


Not that I'd put a hangar dead center of the base, but if I could guarantee ALL my soldiers ringing it and facing in towards it on turn one, I think I'd be happy man. Oh I get to shoot first? And all my tubes start pointing at all of them? . . . . . . .K!

Why'd you put a Hangar in the middle of the base? I mean I know why Zombie and NKF would; to liven things up!

* Do not place bases right on the poles. If an alien craft is searching about with an interceptor tailing, and the UFO gets too close and you decide to shoot it down, you get a wreck near the pole. Then, when your skyranger is going to the salvage, it is hard to see if the mission is night or day. Better to move the base a bit off the pole. If you need the aircraft to fly straight, just move em in sections. Anyway Ive had success in the past with pole placement for base #1 as the ice maps are very easy and fast. I think all UFO's start and end their flight at a pole don't they? thats gotta be a plus.


My answer to this situation is the same as Zombies or my contraversial answer to the terror mission; I just wouldnt bother with it. By the time you have a polar base you can afford to skip recovery missions.

* Only 2 base designs.
Depot, which is one Hanger plus choc-a-block full of general stores, workshops for laser canon, and living quarters
Non-Depot, which is 3 Hangers and easily enough room for anything else including 2-4 PSI schools. Dedicated PSI schools is idiotic as your soldiers will be near their craft waiting for missions or repeatedly raiding some floater base, right? Besides it will be the strike bases that get attacked by the aliens so that is where you want the masses of soldiers.


Right and when the fleet's in, I say "Aliens if you're gonna attack nows the time". Usually with strike bases you'll have a defending squad and at least one attack squad, so more soldiers to play with. Of course if your attack squad is out on a mission . . . .


Stewart how on earth do you take a screenshot of the XCOM base? When I try on windows, and then paste onto a paint doc, it comes up screwed. How do you do it?


<blushes> My avatar was created by mercilessly raping Micah's image of Miconia!

I just found out one thing.

I had an early attack on my base with the safe design, three hangars below, the elevator and the rest above it, by sectoids. Defence was rather easy. Send proximity grenade before the door and hit turn. Check with tank if there's any alien that passed to shoot it down. Once there seem to be just a few aliens start to hunt them.

Then I needed a module, but all squares off hangars were being built. meaning either I had to wait 20 days, for that was the remaining time for the more advanced building, or make it beside the hangar and elevator.

Then more sectoids came to my base. Urgh, that was a lot tougher, to top it half of my men were not back yet from a crash site and half of the ones I had were wounded, so I I fought with ten soldiers (roughly the same I had during first attack) and one tank/cannon. I barely made it, losing all soldiers but one. Granted, half of the losses happened when there was just the commander using all psi attacks he could, a couple cyberdisks and one hidding sectoid that took my storming soldiers from behind, but in the first I had no losses. Anyway, it looks like it is indeed as a rule that adding a module beside the elevator connecting to the hangars increases the difficulty a good deal.


I'm looking at non-choke point designs right now. Very early on you're likely to be invaded by either sectoids or floaters. At this stage 8 to 10 rookies each with Heavy Cannon 1 AP clip 1 HE clip and one demolition charge, are not gonna do all that bad. Of course you want the hangars and lift to one side of the base. The worst thing you'll face at this time are cyberdisks. Since your base gives nowhere to fly other than the hangars and lift they will always be on the ground. In this situation, toss a demolition charge and Cyberdisk goes bye-bye, and that you can take to the bank. By the time snakemen show up you should have Heavy laser, motion detectors and laser tanks. By the time the green meanie weenies show up, personal armour and medikits. By the time the orangemen show up, you should have the equipment to handle them.

NOTE: in pocket UFO if base defenses shoot down a UFO, they stop invading ^_^
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I'm starting to like the heavy cannon more and more.

#64 Zombie

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Posted 15 October 2008 - 07:14 PM

Why'd you put a Hangar in the middle of the base? I mean I know why Zombie and NKF would; to liven things up!

Besides that, it is a viable base defense strategy. When you have soldiers ringing the Hangars, you have that many more chances to kill aliens. Normal rounds you might kill only one or two with a chokepoint. Without it, you could potentially kill 5-6 or more depending on where they spawn. When the aliens take that big of a hit in one round, morale is bound to drop. When your soldiers have MC it's even easier. All you need is one or possibly two good "spots" (getting a visual on an alien) and you can control almost all of them. If you didn't get them all, the leftover aliens will be too busy shooting at their friends to muck with you. Blaster Bombing the Hangars is also easier without a chokepoint as you may need to waste some waypoints to navigate through the confined spaces. Like I said before though, the central Hangar non-chokepoint base design is best for later in the game when you have the necessary super-soldiers and technology to defend it properly. :blush1:

- Zombie
The Mr. Grognard of X-COM

Zombie: Empirical data's your only man, when formulating a research plan.
A soldier's death is never in vain if it makes the formula more plain.
A few dozen make a better case for refining that third decimal place.
They call me Zombie because I don't sleep, as I slowly struggle to climb this heap,
of corpses, data points, and trials, but from the top - I'll see for miles!


#65 Morken

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Posted 15 October 2008 - 11:18 PM

Screenshot
Well I got the screenshot but its in .TGA format, which is not accepted by paint. What program do I need to view the image?

Surrounding Hangars is thrill seeking
Well, superhuman mutons often survive a spray of plasma then shoot back...good luck but I guess unless your soldiers are typically max reaction veterans of many base raids with pistols, they will die quite often.

Small radar, anyone else know if they are shot up
Stewart I seem to recall differently, I recall aliens ignoring the Small radar module. Does anyone else have an opinion as to whether aliens will go up the stairs of a small radar and shoot it up like missile defence?

Stewart I can't believe someone would make a program just to design a base. LOL

#66 NKF

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Posted 16 October 2008 - 12:19 AM

Screenshots can be converted to common formats with free image viewers/converters. My favourite is irfanview (just be sure to disassociate txt files - it's odd reading them as images).

---

Surrounding hangars isn't really thrill seeking - though it can be interpreted that way as it's the exact opposite of the chokepoint layout.

You are still in control as all of the aliens are in the middle. Compare that to the starting base where they are all surrounding you and the size of the base allows them to infiltrate it and you never know where they'll be. With a central hangar with all the facilities built off it (petal-like, heh), you know where you are and you know where they are. Exactly like the choke-point bases. The only difference is that you now surround them from all corners while they're all corralled in the middle. You can get some cheap shots with rocket launchers and blaster bombs too - though you don't get this luxury in TFTD.

With intercept bases, these bases can be tiny with just one hangar and the barest of essentials. If any aliens show up in spawn locations they shouldn't be, then it'll be close enough for you to deal with them at point blank range (from their rear or sides, as you should have troops all over the place).

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#67 stewart

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Posted 16 October 2008 - 09:34 AM

Stewart I can't believe someone would make a program just to design a base. LOL


It was borne of the idea that the default base sucks, and myself and others thinking we could've come up with a better design. The idea for the editor is to figure out the time and monetary budget the default base would have been built under and using that criteria to design your own.

Besides, the joy is the programming and the solving of the problem, not whether the effort is logical. :innocent:
Posted Image
I'm starting to like the heavy cannon more and more.