General hints and some odd facts on gameplay.
These are the tips you can get from the "tips" menu item. The text was extracted from the game itself, and all spelling errors are as found in the original.
- Unless you're playing a short game, one of the first things you'll need to build is a second Mining Station. This will help feed materials to your hungry engineers and constructors.
- Scouts can be suprisingly nasty early in the game. They can dart in, pick away at a constructor or engineer, and still be able to run back to safety before their movement is exhausted.
- Every complex has a weak spot. Use stealth units like infiltrators and submarines to secretly find places that your enemy hasn't built gun turrets and anti aircraft, and strike there first.
- Connect your gun turrets and other fixed defenses to your complex. If they're connected, they'll reload automatically, and be repaired when damaged.
- Spread at least some of your mines out over a large area. Your enemy will move just as slowly if he thinks he's likely to run into a mine as he would if he knows he will run into a mine.
- As your complex grows, you can use a mine layer to pick up previously laid mines and move them out to the new perimeter of your complex.
- Rocket launchers are by far the best way to clear enemy minefields, because they affect a 9 square area. This also makes them useful in ferreting out enemy infiltrators.
- Aircraft have a hard time with anti-aircraft. If you must attack with just planes, consider sacrificing empty air transports by moving them in first to draw fire. When the anti-aircraft has been exhausted for that turn, use your Ground Attack planes to take out the enemy defenses.
- Mobile anti-aircraft are powerful once in place, but it's hard to attack with them. That is because if moved, they lose the ability to fire for that turn, and the target can then attack or escape unhindered. Use Fighters if you must attack your enemy's air force.
- Bombarding your enemy's complex from the water can be an excellent tactic, especially if your enemy is not prepared. Ships are generally tougher and faster than land units.
- Infiltrators can be devastating if they catch you unprepared. Infantry units on Sentry duty in and around your complex can help avoid much grief.
- Use Air Transports to land Missile Crawlers or Anti-Aircraft in strategic spots for hit-and-run attacks. After they fire their shots, load the missile crawlers or anti-aircraft back into the transport and retreat to safety.
- Study your Upgrade options carefully. Sometimes an inexpensive upgrade may provide a remarkable edge.
- Always try to keep a reserve of refined gold (credits) for emergency upgrades.
- When you spot an enemy unit, always remember to look at its statistics by right-clicking on the unit to display its attributes. It is very important to know the current strength and capabilities of your opposition.
- If there is a spot over water where you wish you had a Radar or a Missile Crawler, remember that your Engineers can build islands out of water platforms on which you may then build any other structure or defense.
- In battle, select your targets with care. Often, eliminating a Scanner, Radar or a Repair unit may have a more devastating effect on your enemy than loss of fighting units. Your enemy can't shoot at things he can't see.
- Be aware that if you don't have a shipyard by the time your opponent has built submarines, he can make it very difficult for you to build your own sea units. One hit from these unseen opponents will severely damage a constructor and destroy an engineer outright.
- Any Complex without anti-air defenses, especially in early stages of custom games, is likely to suffer a quick defeat.
- When you are about to start a new head-to-head game, study the map carefully and decide on what your overall strategy is going to be before making your clan and initial landing force selections.
- When you want to resupply a unit (tranfer raw materials to it), it does NOT need to be right next to a mining station or storage bin. The unit only needs to be next to ANY structure that is ultimatly connected to a mining station or storage bin.
- Power stations are twice as efficient as power generators. Power Stations convert 1 unit of fuel into 1 unit of power, whereas Power Generators consume 2 fuel to generate 1 power.
- When attacking an enemy complex, look for weak connecting spots, which if destroyed, will make multiple structures become detached from their power and/or material sources at once. You may be able to halt operation of numerous plants by simply destroying one or two connectors.
- Do not assume a game is won or lost without considering this: When an Eco-Sphere is destroyed all points it accumulated during its existence are also removed from the current points total.
- Disable an enemy unit before attempting to capture it. This will reduce the possibility of detection tremendously.
- Always prefer to capture enemy units that are away from the pack. When a captured unit changes color it will come under immediate attack by its ex-teammates.
- When a research assignment is completed, the resulting upgrade needs to be applied to any unit or units you wish to benefit. This is done in the same manner as upgrading existing units after an upgrade purchase.
Some additional tips.
- You can shift-click on a destination to see the path.
- You can't refine gold directly from a mining plant, so you'll need a gold vault before you can refine anything.
- You can construct a building on top of (underneath) connectors without destroying them first.
- If you you're losing track of small units (e.g. infiltrators) in rubble or under connectors, use the "colors" button to find them.
- To clear an attack order, if your unit is out of movement, tell it to move and then cancel the move order (with "Stop" or by hitting 'S'). If the unit still has movement left, shift-click the destination so it doesn't actually move, then cancel the order.
- The most effective tactic in the game is "air dropping" ground units from an air transport. When you drop a unit, it will have full movement, and can use all of its attacks. After firing, pick the unit back up with the air transport and retreat back.
- When air-dropping units in enemy territory, watch out for mines. The safest place to drop a unit is on the rubble of a building. Bring along a rocket launcher; it can clear a 5x5 area of mines.
- Your actions get interleaved with your opponent's. If you air-drop a tank and order it to fire, it will fire once, one enemy unit will fire, then you fire a second time, and then additional enemy units fire. You can conduct suicide raids into the middle of an enemy formation to take out important units (scanners, missile crawlers).
- You can't upgrade alien units. After killing enough enemies, they "learn" from the experience and get stronger. The ability to upgrade is determined at random.
- A unit with range 8 can hit a target 5 diagonal squares away. A unit with range 11 can hit a target 7 squares away. These can be handy to know when planning locations for base facilities that could come under fire from long-range units.
- Stealth units (infiltrators, submarines, submerged personnel carriers) will move out of the way of enemy units if they have movement left from the previous turn. Never move them the full amount when in enemy territory.
- Be careful when driving personnel carriers in enemy territory. The fastest route between two points often involves driving onto land, and once spotted they can be destroyed by any ground unit.
- Some units are harder to steal than others, e.g. it's much harder to steal a missile crawler than a tank.
- Ground units can get "free" movement when moving past a depot by entering and exiting the facility.
- The computer player can tell when its units are in radar range, even if it can't see your radar. On some skill levels you can use this to push enemy units back with submarines, since they like to lurk just outside your radar.
- The game doesn't seem to allow you to pick up a ground unit directly under an air transport. You have to move off and then select "load" on the unit.
- The game doesn't seem to allow you to move an air unit on top of another unit. Multiple air units and one ground unit can stack in a square, but they have to end up there by some other means.
- Enemy mines you have spotted can be forgotten, so destroy them while you can.
Odds and ends.
- Submarines can shoot planes flying over coast squares. For example, you can shoot down the AWACs at the start of campaign mission 5.
- If a submerged personnel carrier with troops on board is hit by indirect rocket launcher fire, the troops inside disappear, but the carrier still shows a nonzero value in the "cargo" display. The carrier itself remains unhurt. (Not always -- sometimes the carrier gets hit.)
Type '[', the word, and then ']'. These remain active until you restart the game.
- [maxspy] - see entire map
- [maxammo] - refill ammunition
- [maxstorage] - fill all storage units to capacity
- [maxsurvey] - reveal survey information for entire map
- [maxsuper] - upgrade selected unit to highest level