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mosshadow

Base defense

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So just now I got my russian base blown to bits after one of the larger alien ships, a cruiser most likely got through the plasma turret and landed troops. I only had 5 rookies, one got mind controlled so I machinegunned him down with another guy, my assualt was able to shotgun down one alien, then suddenly tons of aliens came from the barracks room which I had no idea would contain aliens and killed everyone. How should I defend bases on the ground?

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The best way to handle them is to focus on the air game so they don't happen in the first place.

Failing that, you would want to keep a decent garrison of troops/vehicles at each base. Or just stack multiple turrets, I usually build 5-6 if I feel so inclined.

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You can have up to sixteen soldiers on a base defense mission, so I would recommend having that number of soldiers available so you always have maximum firepower.

Unless I'm misremembering, you can see the entire base layout from the start. There will be some small tunnel-like rooms off of some of your facilities - these are the spawn points for the attacking alien units so you should know roughly where they are coming from and should be able to plan accordingly.

During the mission itself, don't just wait for the aliens to come to you as this will allow them to surround and flank you. So I'd recommend moving forces towards the alien spawn points from multiple directions and try and pin them down in rooms where you can surround them instead. (By necessity, this requires plenty of soldiers, thereby emphasizing the importance of the first point). Note, however, that you should keep some units around the command room entrance or even in the command room itself as Wraiths can teleport into the command room from anywhere on the map.

Finally, while it's expensive to keep your soldiers equipped with the latest gear, you can pass on your obsolete equipment to garrisons in bases that aren't otherwise used for ground missions so at least you will have some advanced equipment to help. Relatedly, grenades and rockets upgrade for free so they're useful on base defences where your equipment might otherwise be outdated.

EDIT: Or what Dranak said!

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Do not kill your soldiers because they were mind controlled. Run and hide from them, take cover, this way you can have the soldier back to help you later. When inside UFOs that have teleporters try to block them so the mind controlled guy can't reach you.

But yeah, having a base attacked with 5 rookies in it is a bad deal.

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Speaking about base defense...how many vehicles can participate, and are they counted as 2 soldiers against limit? The way I see it,vehicles are much better than rookies...

Oh, and can I blow up anything important during base defense?

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I think there might be UI support for three vehicles but there's a hardcoded cap of 1 during base defenses. Something like that anyway.

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As Dranak said, air superiority.

Failing that, don't worry about it. Write the base off, build a replacement, and get on with it.

Seriously.

While it is possible to keep enough adequately-equipped troops in every base to ensure that you have a good chance of standing up to an alien counterattack, it won't take long for the cost of the troops' salaries to exceed the cost of rebuilding the base and base assaults are infrequent enough that, in my experience, it's far less expensive to build more, smaller, and relatively-expendable bases than to keep up garrisons while waiting for an attack to come (which may never happen anyhow). Plus, of course, more small bases help with maintaining air superiority by providing more radar stations, earlier detection of UFOs, and more ability to shoot them down before they can land a base assault (both because you detect them earlier and because you're likely to have interceptors based closer to the UFO when it's detected).

And then there's also the hassle of rotating troops into and out of secondary bases (assuming you want your experienced troops to be spread around instead of all-rookie garrisons) and sending them your old equipment (assuming you don't want the rookies to be armed only with conventional ballistics), which I find to be tedious micromanagement that is completely eliminated by not bothering with garrisons.

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Yeah the costs of manning and equipping troops at all your bases will be crippling. Way too much to invest on the slim chance that they decide to come for your base *and* get through your interceptors.

One caught me off-guard the other day, but 3 plasma batteries splattered the UFO. Total investment of 150k capital to build them, and 37,500 per month upkeep. Compare to 10 soldiers sitting, each costing you 10k per month, plus equipment, barracks, storeroom, etc. If you're going to invest that amount of effort into them, they're not simply a defense garrison - at that point you'd better be having them raid everything you shoot down in their AO, just to pay for themselves.

I'd say that if you're worried about it, build 3 turrets at the base and leave it at that. Depending on what you have based there it will be a PITA to replace it.

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Air superiority and heavy use of turrets tend to keep those base defence missions relatively rare, but especially when playing on iron man, I feel that you should prepare for the chance of base attack happening. I build my bases from the gound up with defence in mind. This slows down the initial base construction, but helps a lot when defending. I construct only one or two tiles that are in direct contact with the command center, and then build the rest of the facilities into the sides of the "map" through these entrance points. I got this idea from a player of the original game. The aliens must acces the ceter area through a single corner, allowing me to create a powerful crossfire from two corridors. Ten man garrison with machine guns and rocket launchers, and other conventional weapons have thus far been succesful every time.

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