Episode 5 - Missions/Tactics *SPOILERS*

U

Unregistered

Guest
Still on Hero, so my wingmen can at least do SOMETHING. The fighters don't usually pose much of a threat to me until I run out of wingmen and a new wave launches. Then it's usually 8-10 dumbfires flying at me at once, something will hit.
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
One thing to keep in mind about missions like this - the Targu II frigates are by far *the* most successful capship design we introduced into the game. They're the only capships that represent anywhere near the kind of challenge that WC2 capships offered. I'm genuinely proud of them :).

The paradox with the Targu II is that even though they only take one torpedo to go down, you'll see your wingmen lobbing three or four torpedoes at them... and often still fail to kill them. They're really well-covered by turrets, and the most obvious attack angle (the exposed, turretless nose area) is not liked by your wingmen. They tend to get cut up by turrets pretty badly, and their torpedoes often get shot up.

Now, this means you can do one of two things to make the mission go better for you - the choice depends on what ship you're flying, and how desperately you want to kill the big ships personally. The first option is to concentrate on torpedoing the Targus all by yourself - very often, "wasting" one of your torpedoes on a Targu will result in a wingman keeping two torpedoes for a bigger target. Sometimes, the tradeoff is more like one-for-four, if multiple friendlies were attacking the same frigate (as they inevitably do). The second option, which works only if you're flying a Rapier or Sabre, is to soften up the Targus. I find that knocking out the turret sitting on top of the frigate's bridge, as well as taking down at least half of the four turrets on the sides of the hull helps hugely, because in most cases, your wingmen will be attacking from about a 45 degree angle to the front and side of the frigate.

In both cases, time is crucial - the more time you waste, the more torpedoes will be lost by your wingmen (and the wingmen themselves may go down as well).
 
U

Unregistered

Guest
Well, I survived the mission and ended up finishing, not sure if my ending was the moderately good or good ending. It looked a lot like how Fleet Action ended, so I'd say the medium ending?

Can you GET the good ending without destroying the snakeir in this mission?
 
U

Unregistered

Guest
I assume then I would have to destroy the snakeir in the final mission, in addition to everything else being successful?
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Not necessarily, but that would certainly help.
Episode 5 uses a point system on the winning path, similar to the system used in WC1. There is a number of points to be won at various times, and you need a given number of points to get the winning ending (the only alternative, though, is the middle ending; the *really* losing ending is unobtainable on the winning path - sorry, the Firekka is too small a fish to make that kind of difference in this battle). The first opportunities to score points come long before Episode 5 - you get points for saving the Verdun in Episode 3, and destroying the Tarvakh in Episode 4). Destroying the Tarvakh, in addition to giving you points, also allows you to score more during Episode 5 itself, because otherwise, that Snakeir won't be there at all (it'll be busy escorting the damaged Tarvakh back into Kilrathi territory).

Anyway - if you've destroyed the Tarvakh, you can afford a few failures. If you've only damaged the Tarvakh... well, you're on the edge, then. IIRC, if you go into Episode 5 with the Verdun lost and the Tarvakh only damaged, you'll either need to get 100% success in all other scoring opportunities (which doesn't necessarily mean *all* objectives - for example, Targus usually don't contribute to your points, even when they're an objective), or it may even be that the winning ending is completely out of reach.

The winning ending *is* more upbeat than Fleet Action - not by much, but it is. That's why, if the Tarvakh gets away, as it did in Fleet Action, it takes a really superhuman effort to deal more damage to the Kilrathi than was done in the book. It's a bit counterintuitive, but it makes sense, all things considered. You'd think that merely driving away a supercarrier is good enough when you're fighting to save Earth... but the winning ending also implies that Confed will be able to counterattack, and a damaged Tarvakh along with that Snakeir could very well prevent that.
 

Glabro

Spaceman
Ep 5 Mission 1 (assuming there's only one initial mission - if not, this is on the winning path): Escort Rapiers.

Anyway, once you pick up the rapiers and head back to the Firekka you run into a bunch of Sartha. Problem is you've got about a 40-60 second window (or thereabouts) before a kat ace in a Vatari comes in with 3 or 4 friends. This is BAD. Double bad that on Hero, YOUR GUNS DO NOT BEAT THEIR SHIELD REGEN. You _NEED_ missiles or the rapiers' guns to kill them.

Hmm, I thought difficulty only influenced AI aggressiveness and elusiveness? Does it actually just make their ships' shields and guns stronger? If so, I guess I need to stop playing Hero (and perhaps play Hardcore, that is, if I ever get shot down, I replay and eject after accomplishing the same as I did when I was shot down - unless this leads to a Game Over)




If you get a good run behind a Vatari while you're killing Sartha, throw two heatseekers at it from close range, or hit it a few times to make it run from you and get back in the fight. Don't dick around trying to gun down its shields: you can't hurt it.

I've found that getting 4-5 good solid hits from a mass driver volley followed up by a single heat seeker up the tailpipe does the trick. This way, you can defeat the ace first, and if you wish, chase him down (this expends some fuel though, and is strictly unnecessary) - but don't use any missiles, instead, shoot full salvoes (fully recharged guns).

Using one missile per Drakhai, you should be able to take them out with the Rapiers' help.


After that, you have to scan a Rigakh in the middle of a battlegroup. Honestly this doesn't suck nearly as bad as it sounds if you're good, it comes down to having a LOT of burner fuel. You have two options here.
1) Kill all the escorts and fly in before more are launched. This is a bad idea. You have 3 fighters, probably with a lot of damage on them. They have 3 SQUADRONS.
2) Burn past them.

The best way is to simply circle the Rigakh, staying at 2000-4500 feet. Don't just press down the burner button - instead, pump it to maintain a speed between 1000-1400, this saves a lot of fuel.
 

cff

Kilk'dymga'qith laq Ik'vikvi
Hmm, I thought difficulty only influenced AI aggressiveness and elusiveness? Does it actually just make their ships' shields and guns stronger?

The game cheats in Rookie and Nightmare by changing such stats, but IIRC shield recharge isn't modified in either. Armor value of the enemies should be higher in Nightmare however.
All other levels only affect the performance of the AI.
 

Toast

Space Marshal
Here's a request for tactics applicable to the losing path mission, Flight of the Arrow.

So you have two waves of targets - Grikath bombers and antimatter missiles. I can catch the missiles but have never managed to down more than 60% of the bombers. Any advice?

I've tried taunting the bombers to get them to break off and attack me. Not much luck there - the bombers don't seem to respond as much as other fighters do.

I've also ordered my wingmen to target one bomber while I shoot down another. While I do get more bombers this way, I still can't hit more than 60% of them.

Anyone able to offer a more effective mission strategy?
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Here's a request for tactics applicable to the losing path mission, Flight of the Arrow.

So you have two waves of targets - Grikath bombers and antimatter missiles. I can catch the missiles but have never managed to down more than 60% of the bombers. Any advice?
Ah, my favouritest mission in the game :).

Don't always attack the nearest bomber - instead, go after the ones that are furthest away first. As you fly past the other wings, try to take a few ships at each pair, and especially try to kill two of them with your DFs - but don't loiter. Once you're out in the front, check the nav map after every kill, and go for the ones sneaking past. Be aggressive - better to come home with 95% damage than let them get away. And yeah, make good use of your wingmen - they should also start off by killing some of the furthest-away Grikaths... but in their case, you have pay attention so they won't wind up shooting at your targets. If you're all going after the same planes, you're wasting precious time.

The game cheats in Rookie and Nightmare by changing such stats, but IIRC shield recharge isn't modified in either. Armor value of the enemies should be higher in Nightmare however.
All other levels only affect the performance of the AI.
Yep - not even armour value of the enemies, actually. Apart from AI stuff (gun accuracy, decoy usage, turning rate, missile usage, and the interest they have in the player), the only things affected by difficulty are your ship strength (affected on all levels), and your gun power (double on rookie, but then normal on every other difficulty level).
 

Glabro

Spaceman
Interesting. Is there a place where I could read up more on the difficulty levels in WC III-V? I heard, for example, that on WCIII and IV Ace is more difficult than Hero because of afterburner usage or something...

Ship strength, that'd mean the amount of damage your "core" can absorb?
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Presumably, it means everything - shields, armour, and core. It's hard to tell - this info comes from the WCP Official Guide, and it's not exactly the most technical of documents. Similarly, I suppose you could probably get similar info for W3-4 from the official guides for those games, but I don't know, since I haven't read them.
 
B

Brancer

Guest
Anyone have advice from S5, M2 Losing Path

The one where you're in Cygni and the frigate fleet is comming after you. I manage to do very well in defending against fighters, but torpedoes usually come out of somewhere (I think it was the targu's) and sink the firekka every time.

Tips?
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Yes - shoot down the torpedoes :). Since you're not flying a bomber, that's really all you can do.
 

Falcon988

Commodore
Hmm. I wonder if it's not so obvious to everyone that you -can- shoot down torpedoes or are supposed to? I'm a StarLancer and Freespace vet so I'm used to it, but maybe someone without much space sim experience might not pick up on that?
 

Quarto

Unknown Enemy
Oh, sure - I'll admit that shooting down torps is something that we might not have explained enough, because it seemed so obvious to all of us. Standoff does that kind of thing on more than a few occasions (if you think about it, someone who hasn't read Fleet Action would find the whole story confusing, starting with the Episode 2 intro). It's something we gotta work on, next time.
 

Iceblade

Admiral
Yeah, I knew you could shoot down torps, I got really good at that in UE, it is so difficult doing this though with fighters other than the UE Scim.
 
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