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Which Blade Do You Use Most?


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Poll: Which Blade Do You Use The Most? (136 member(s) have cast votes)

Which Blade Do You Use The Most?

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#1 UnknownWarrior

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Posted 17 March 2004 - 03:08 PM

I use Thermic Lances because they kill those lobsters good enough and don't weigh too much, I also equip every one of my soldiers with a Thermic Lance just in case
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#2 Jonaleth Irenicus

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Posted 17 March 2004 - 03:38 PM

Heavy Thermic Lance. Especially in later difficulties, Lobstermen and sometimes Tasoth can survive one attack from other melee weapons, besides, Heavy Thermic Lances are not that heavy or slow to use.
Passenger ship terror site, first turn, I open the door of my Triton, there is a Tasoth up on the next floor (his back is facing the screen so I don't know what weapon he has).

One of my guys fire at him, hit, he reaction fires with Thermal Shock Launcher. The whole crew stunned. Mission over.

#3 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 17 March 2004 - 03:39 PM

I use the thermal tazer.

Or, available I use the thermic lance. It has good damage and good speed.
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#4 j'ordos

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Posted 17 March 2004 - 03:53 PM

My preference goes out to the hardest hitting thing, so obviously the Heavy Thermic Lance. By the time I get them I have several fast soldiers anyway, so they can cover a good distanceand still use it (and once is enough :naughty: )
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#5 NKF

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Posted 18 March 2004 - 12:08 AM

I use all of them. I just scale them based on who's carrying them and what aliens I'm facing.

Most of the time, I use the vibroblade, because it's fast and powerful (one hit cripples and sometimes even stuns a lobsterman). Besides, for every hit with the heavy thermic lance, you get two hits with the vibroblade - behing able to hit several aliens in a tight spot can be very handy. Granted, it gets twice the armour reduction as the heavy thermic lance, but this is no problem for most of the aliens who have little armour. It also means you get two chances at inflicting damage rather than the one. It's also relatively light, so you can carry it in your backpack without imbalancing yourself too much.

The thermic lance is a decent balance, and suprisingly enough, the only one of the three drills that I use the least. Apparently I go for the extremes in this case. ;) I'll still use them - just not conciously.

Heavy Thermic Lance - the slowest but has a big whallop. It's also the heaviest of the drills too, so unless you're very strong, you're going to have to compensate by lighten your main weapon's load or suffer a TU penalty (which, by the way, does not make you stronger by the end of the mission). I use these primarily against enemies with lots of external armour, like the hallucinoids (42 armour!) and xarquids, or the front armour of a tentaculat (50!) (these are all superhuman armour levels, by the way). Just try hitting them with vibroblades and you'll really regret it - but use the HTL and they're short work. They're overkill against lobstermen, as even on superhuman, the vibroblades eat them for dinner anyway. Though, there can be occasions where overkill can come in handy.

All the drills should be combined with a soldier carrying an M. C reader to probe any enemies you wish to attack with the drills while at the same time making sure that you won't invoke a reaction shot in case of an attack failure (hey, even a 0 - 150 attack roll can fail from time to time). No matter the unique qualities of your drill of choice, if you cannot get away with it, there's not much of a point is there? :)

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Edited by NKF, 18 March 2004 - 12:11 AM.

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#6 Mark0

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Posted 18 March 2004 - 07:29 PM

answering the poll i always went HTL.
and i only used HTL on Tasoth,lobsters and tentaculats


NKF your tips are pretty nice! :beer:

#7 Yoni

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Posted 19 March 2004 - 01:17 PM

I always use the spoon. It's a slow and painfull death.
Nah, I mostly use the vibroblade because it kills most aliens in one hit and uses the least tu's. And the ones who don't die from one hit get another hit for the total price of one from a heavy thermic lance. ^_^

EDIT: typo

Edited by Yoni, 19 March 2004 - 04:06 PM.


#8 UnknownWarrior

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Posted 19 March 2004 - 01:18 PM

I should try and see if I can kill a lobsterman with a vibro blade
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#9 mikker

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Posted 20 March 2004 - 04:55 AM

just started playing TFTD. Never seen any blades, and in this game i havnt seen any lobstermen.

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#10 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 20 March 2004 - 08:00 AM

just started playing TFTD.  Never seen any blades, and in this game i havnt seen any lobstermen.

Vibroblades do not show up until you nab a calcinite corpse (the Calcinite is the aquatoid terrorist race)
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#11 Yoni

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Posted 25 March 2004 - 12:48 PM

I should try and see if I can kill a lobsterman with a vibro blade

I play tftd on veteran at the moment. My findings for vibroblades on lobsterman were stunned or killed in 1 hit and killed in two hits. So when they didn't get stunned or killed by the first hit, they got killed from the second. Tasoth on the other hand tend to take 3 or 4 hits to die (or be stunned).
I think most of you people play on superhuman (I've never thried that yet). I've no clue how much more difficult that is but you'll probably be capable of making an estimate.

#12 Hexeon

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Posted 10 April 2004 - 01:27 PM

Tasoth are far more resistant to TLs than Lobsterman. On superhuman level I often have Tasoth that survive HTL hits, while Lobsterman, no matter the rank, have always died in one hit, always.

#13 Puasonen

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Posted 11 April 2004 - 03:10 AM

I never use any other blades than VibroBlade. It's fast and it kills most aliens with one shot, and even if it doesn't, you have extra shots compared to TL and HTL. vibroblade is the way to go, that combined with grenades or MC-disruptor and your army is unstoppable.
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#14 Jonaleth Irenicus

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Posted 11 April 2004 - 07:28 AM

Dart pistols combined with MC disruptors are unstoppable, but we are discussing HTH weapons, so...

I can accept that vibroblades are more efficient in terms of more damage per TU, but tactically, I find that I need the best damage weapon over the "best dmg per TU" weapon.

This is because you may not have the chance to use your weapon a second time and you have to make your first attack really count.
Passenger ship terror site, first turn, I open the door of my Triton, there is a Tasoth up on the next floor (his back is facing the screen so I don't know what weapon he has).

One of my guys fire at him, hit, he reaction fires with Thermal Shock Launcher. The whole crew stunned. Mission over.

#15 NKF

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Posted 11 April 2004 - 09:07 AM

The vibroblade's main weakness is its low damage. Other than that, it's a decent enough weapon against most opponents.

Its main problem is aliens with heavy armour. Superhuman hallucinoids and xarquids -- yes, I realise no one in their right mind would conciously attack these with hand-to-hand weapons -- are quiet hard to kill with vibroblades. Anything with more than 40 or more armour tends to be a problem. This also includes hitting superhuman tentaculats in the front armour (they get 50).

As for provoking reaction attacks - yes, sadly, this is another one of its weaknesses. To avoid this, employ the use of MC Readers to survey the TU %age and reaction level of any potential target before approaching. Melee units and any units not armed with a ranged weapon are safe to approach.

As for the larger and more powerful drills, remember that while they can deal more damage, they do suffer from the fact that damage is random. So while they can dish out tons of damage on successful attacks, a failed attack is quite costly - especially if you cannot run away.

There's a risk for any of the weapons. My advice is to use them all and not just stick to one variety. That way you can mix and match to suit your needs on the spot rather than slapping your head in frustration and thinking 'oh why didn't I bring the fill-in-the-blank blade along?'. ;)

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#16 Cpl. Facehugger

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Posted 04 May 2004 - 10:08 AM

I kill superhuman hallucinoids with thermic lances all the time. ;)

But then again, I kill everything I possibly can with thermic lances, including Triscenes and especially biodrones.
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#17 Arky

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Posted 11 May 2004 - 01:52 AM

I usually keep a HTL in my backback as a backup. If the ennemy is close, and I'm not sure if the Sonic Canon will kill him in one shot, then I use it.

Vibroblades? TO be honest, I've never used them in 8 years of playing. I
ve always gained access to thermic lances fast enough.
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#18 Blehm 98

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Posted 13 May 2004 - 11:44 PM

Thermic lances. A good trade between weight and power. Lobster, anyone?
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#19 Mustang

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Posted 20 June 2004 - 03:49 PM

Accidentally voted TL
I use Vibro Blades because all I need to kill with blades are lobstermen and they are weak against blades. The only time I have used something else is when I equipped ensign j'ordos with a TL because it was a lobsterman mission that was comming and I didn't have enough guns. (don't ask why)

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#20 mikey

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Posted 21 June 2004 - 01:40 PM

i havent used any blade because i haven't met any calcinites

#21 Exo2000

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Posted 12 September 2004 - 03:19 PM

Calcinites are fun. :D

Actually, they're a pain in the behind, one got two strikes on one of my modified Mag Ion Armour soldiers (one of my best) and managed to remove 2 HP. When all damage areas was 2000-2500. See what I mean? She was fine. Had like, 70 odd HP.
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#22 Blehm 98

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Posted 12 September 2004 - 06:26 PM

okay, pinned. this is a pretty important topic, is it not?
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#23 NKF

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Posted 12 September 2004 - 10:46 PM

Exo2000: 2000 - 2500?

The armour plates can only hold values between 0 - 255. If you were using 2000, then the game would've read it as 208, and 2500 would've been 196. Or did you mean when you add everything together?

Wow, that must mean that calcinites have attacks that can go well into the 200's. That's almost as good as the sonic cannon (0 - 260, if I'm not mistaken)!

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#24 Paladin

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Posted 13 September 2004 - 08:32 AM

:huh: where'd those numbers come from?? :LOL:
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#25 NKF

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Posted 13 September 2004 - 02:41 PM

Well, X-com units can take double damage from sonic. The sonic cannon is 130. That means it can deal between 0 - 260 damage (not necessarly a full 260, but numbers between that). No wonder your magnetic ion armour, though it has 140 for for front plates, doesn't always block a sonic cannon attack.

As for the numbers I derived from the armour levels, well, I took the number, put it in MS-Calculator (scientific mode), switched to hexadecimal mode, switched to byte mode and then switched back to decimal and got the values I listed.

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#26 Paladin

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Posted 14 September 2004 - 08:46 AM

:huh: remind me to never again ask you where you got your numbers :LOL:
Seriously, though, I just did not understand what your numbers where... seemed kinda obscure... ^_^
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#27 Chris StarShade

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Posted 17 September 2004 - 06:38 PM

Not once has ANY alien survived a direct hit with a vibroblade in my game. (of course, I'm playing beginner at the moment so that might have some effect...)

I have also never had a problem with an alien reflex-firing my blading troops. Most of the time, I get the kill because either:

A. It is a lobsterman, and I don't want to waste ammo.
or
B. The troop has gun in one hand and blade in the other and I just opened a door and the alien is at point-blank.

I have also (horror of horrors) killed tentacluts with these things. I tell you, they are the BANE of zombies.

*DRILL* ooh, a tentaclut *DRILL* ooh, a dead tentaclut.

Well, time to get back to my mission. I am currently INSISTING on killing every last alien in this alien base under the (possibly false) notion that if I do I may get a recovery on the loot stored in the base. 150-200 zrrbite mixed with all the aqua plastics and stuff would be great. Heh, my collection of disruptor bombs would probably double if it let me recover everything. HAHA!
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#28 Paladin

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Posted 21 September 2004 - 07:09 AM

Yeah, I might try it on higher diff levels later on, but the damage and low TU cost makes the blades :rock: especially in close quarters and against lobstermen :rolleyes:

And yes, I've always tried to finish off the bases, but they're bloody BIG and LONG, and displacement sensors are your best friends there... ^_^
But the loot is definitely worth it :D
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#29 Blehm 98

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Posted 26 September 2004 - 04:06 PM

blades are the one light in the darkness of lobstermen. I tell you, what's it like using an entire 5 man squad for 4 turns with xcomutil enhanced gauss rifles and sonic rifles to finally stun a lobsterman.....
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#30 Chris StarShade

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Posted 26 September 2004 - 08:53 PM

Clearly, Blehm, you do not know the joys of the Sonic Cannon. I originally thought Sonic Rifles would be my weapon of choice (at least till the clips ran out), but the vast majority of my troops spontaneously generated strength scores in excess of 30 (which is my cutoff point for rifle/cannon)
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#31 guster80

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Posted 28 September 2004 - 11:16 AM

But the sonic cannon requires a lot of TU to fire and lacks burst fire. Against weaker aliens where difference in the weapon power of gauss vs. sonic isn't a problem.... its more of a disadvantage & overkill.

Unless attacking alien colonies (lobbiemen) I only equip 2-3 men with sonic cannon. They make excellent sniper weapons and anti-tank guns.

#32 Paladin

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Posted 28 September 2004 - 01:29 PM

hehe... Underwater strength encumbrancy... another funny thing I had forgotten... Weight is irrelevant underwater, BUOYANCY is ... but then again, so is grenade-throwing...
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#33 Chris StarShade

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Posted 28 September 2004 - 04:45 PM

*modifies Paladin's brain accordingly*

In reality, the grenades are FRISBEE SHAPED yeah, that's it... and the disc shape cuts through water in a pinch... and the aquanauts use MECHANICAL LAUNCHERS on their wrists to send them off.... yeahh....


And... and... it isn't the WEIGHT... it isn't the BUOYANCY... it is the MASS! Yes! It takes more TIME to move stuff with such a high MASS so... so... if you don't have a grand STRENGTH you can't move stuff with high MASS so FAST!


And and... and... the reason they don't FLOAT... is because they all wear LEAD boots.

Actually, last time I saw a diving suit that looked like that was in the 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea movie... heh
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#34 Paladin

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Posted 29 September 2004 - 09:05 AM

:master:*yeeeeessss.....*
Hey!! :o
Let's snap out of it!! :rock:

Yeah, the diving suits in Tftd are really lame, the MagnIon armor is the only one that could be considered "basic" at those depths...
I thought, maybe those grenades are, like torpedo shaped, with a tiny gas propulsion to propel them a dozen meters... that would be cool ^_^
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#35 Tsereve

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Posted 01 October 2004 - 11:42 AM

Thermal Lancer combines the best of the other two hth weapons into one astoundingly versatile weapon.

Vibroblade is light and fast, but too weak for anything other than aquatoids, gilmen, deep-ones, calcinites on veteran and above. Heavy Thermal Lance is just too bulky, and I usually don't go for speed in my troops, prefering accuracy and reactions. The Thermal Lance is powerful enough to at least seriously maim any alien in the game (except perhaps on Superhuman), while still light enough for a guy with between 30-40 strength. I can't see why you guys are all excited about aquanauts with that kind of strength--most of my starting guys have it.
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#36 Paladin

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Posted 01 October 2004 - 11:50 AM

Certainly not *most* in my case...
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then I have to write it down so it doesn't corrupt the rest of my brain.. "

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There is another which states that this has already happened.
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#37 Arjuna

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Posted 10 December 2004 - 07:47 AM

How do you get thermic lances? I've researched vibroblades (use them a lot) and have TLs in my stores, but I can't research them.

Anyway, I'm very happy with VibroBlades as is. Oft have I opened a door on a ship terror site to find some kind of alien standing there. Then my aquanaut gives an evil grin and rams the blade down the filthy creatures throat and cackles maniacally as he squeezes the trigger to spin the blade and spew alien blood everywhere.

Kids, violence is bad.

#38 NKF

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Posted 10 December 2004 - 04:04 PM

Now that you've got the vibroblades, you'll need a live gill man to move up to the thermic lance and the heavy (literally) thermic lance. Heavens know why...

Unlike UFO, TFTD really stresses researching live aliens after you've researched the prerequisites for whatever tech you're expecting that live alien to give you.

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Edited by NKF, 10 December 2004 - 04:05 PM.

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#39 Sinscale17

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Posted 05 February 2005 - 06:44 AM

Vibroblades. Ever since my very first game. They're light enough to attack as often as needed, don't bog down time units, and look cooler than Thermic Lances, which is a huge part to my game. And with a maxed out soldier running around killing everyone on the map like a deranged dentist, there's a great deal of fun to be had with the cheaper and lighter.
Then again, I like Sonic Pistols better than Sonic Cannons, for their ammo/speed benefits. UFO made Heavy Plasmas simply outclass every other weapon, but in TFTD they all get a chance. :blush1:
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#40 muxec

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Posted 21 April 2005 - 04:04 PM

Thermal tazers. Do not need research and cheap, also you can capture your subject.

#41 NKF

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Posted 21 April 2005 - 11:56 PM

It's a good tool - I have a couple on standby all the time. But as a common attack weapon, it doesn't do too well. Just for comparison's sake, observe, the stats! (most of which are not available in the usopaedia):
  • Thermal tazer: 80 stun damage, 40% TUs per attack, Weight: 6, inv. dimensions: 1x3
  • Vibroblade: 80 drill damage, 10% TUs per attack, Weight: 10, inv. dim.: 2x3
  • Thermic Lance: 110 drill damage, 15% Tus per attack, Weight: 10, inv. dim.: 2x3
  • Hvy. Thermic Lance: 150 Drill damage, 20%TUs per attack, Weight: 15, inv. dim: 2x3
We can clearly see that the thermal tazer is the least bulky and lightest of the melee weapons. It's also available right away - a major plus! (oh, yeah, as previously mentioned, cheap).

But it's also the slowest. In melee combat, time units are essential, not only for getting to your target, but also to defend against acts of opportunity (or rather, delay them - not too much of a problem if you 'know' your enemy can't shoot back) - even the HTL is twice as fast. At 40% an attack, you can only get off 2 attacks a turn, not counting movement costs. (comparable with a sonic blasta rifle snapshot in terms of speed)

Also stunning enemies has a bad side effect if you let yourself go out of control. You end up filling your containment with a lot of unnecessary aliens - you only need about 3 live aliens to win the game and get all the tech. Of course, selective pruning of captured aliens, with gratuitous use of explosives, can really help matters (a must when you start using thermal shok launchers as your primary 'softening up' device when fighting lobstermen!). ;)

- NKF

P. S: Actually, the weight for the vibroblade and the TL surprised me (I dug them up from the game files). No difference! so the only reason to choose between the two will be for deciding whether to trade off speed for damage.
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#42 jman4117

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Posted 28 April 2005 - 03:36 PM

Heavy Thermic Lances for Lobstermen and Tasloths.
Vibro Blades for the weaker aliens.

Gotta have that extra speed when fighting aliens with pathetic armor and health. :Poke:

#43 Pherdnut

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Posted 28 March 2006 - 02:21 AM

Well, my skills are a little rusty, but I seem to remember having no problems wasting lobstermen in veteran difficulty with a vibroblade with one swipe but in superhuman, I'd probably pull out the heavy. No point in giving them a chance to shoot back at you. Of course, back then, I used to toss sonic pulsers around like candy at a parade IIRC so those lobsters may have been softened up a bit.

#44 weirwood

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Posted 27 August 2008 - 06:52 PM

Has anyone ever done the calculations on which blade works best vs which enemy on superhuman? Actually, against which enemies is the drill a preferred weapon, and more useful than a sonic blast? I'm not so much talking of the occasions when you open a door and come face to face with an alien - a drill will be great in such a situation no matter which enemy you face. Lobstermen are clearly drill-bait, and the drill stops bio-drone from exploding (I believe). How about tentaculats?