Strategy guide


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#1 Sorbicol

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 08:20 AM

Thought we really ought to have one thread with strategy tips in it. I've taken a few pointers from the official 2k forums and other places, and here are the most useful I've found playing on classic:

1. Build a satellite right out of the gate, quickly followed by a second uplink. Then buy 3 more satellites as soon as you can. Having 5 satellites airborne by the second month makes a huge difference to managing panic. Just remember you'll need to balance those 3 extra satellites with the need for additional power and interceptors to defend them. You can stockpile satellites, you don't need to wait until the uplink is built.

2. In combat never rush unless completely exposed or running from chryssalids! Always take you first move before your second and retreat if things don't look good. You can just put the rest of your squad in over watch, generally speaking all aliens will move forward to find you, although they will retreat if you splat a good number of them

3. If you can look for higher ground on UFO assault maps.

4. Don't underestimate gunslinger for snipers. Can make laser pistols as effective as LMGs with much higher accuracy.

5. Don't worry too much about using explosives if it'll save one of your squad. They are more valuable than a couple of weapons fragments.

6. Good luck commander!  


Feel free to add your own ;)

#2 silencer_pl

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 10:55 AM

With satellites you shouldn't that hurry. Remember - satellite builds 20 days so the critical moment for building satellite is 21 days before council report. Just launching satellite reduces panic. In that 10 days you could get up to 10 engineers (workshop 5 + abduction or council mission) and reducing the price significantly.
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#3 Sorbicol

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 11:16 AM

I know it's a balance, but I still think building them is worth the cost, especially at classic level. My previous couple of games where I haven't rushed built them I've lost at least 3 council members by the end of the second month. In my current play through I've only lost 1. I think it's worth the additional cost and once you have them up you are getting a lot more money in at the end of each month and so they practically pay for themselves. Especially if Russia and the US are two of the countries you cover, that's $330 of income a month straight away

#4 NoXTheRoXStaR

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 11:24 AM

Agreed, and don't forget the bonus for covering an entire continent.
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#5 silencer_pl

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 11:43 AM

You miss understood me. I said don't build them right away but 21 days before report. During those 10 days you could get few engies thus reducing the cost of sats so instead of 100 you pay 70 or instead 70 you pay 50. You still will manage to deploy them on time
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#6 Sunflash

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 11:53 AM

On Classic and Below(maybe Impossible), whatever continet you place your Base on will automagically give you the continet's bonus.
Personally I've gotten a lot of use out of South America, but whatever goats your float I suppose.

#7 Sorbicol

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 01:00 PM

View Postsilencer_pl, on 22 October 2012 - 11:43 AM, said:

You miss understood me. I said don't build them right away but 21 days before report. During those 10 days you could get few engies thus reducing the cost of sats so instead of 100 you pay 70 or instead 70 you pay 50. You still will manage to deploy them on time

Ah I see. In that case yeah makes a lot of sense. Just wait for that first abduction and go for engineers.

#8 Alan

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 01:24 PM

I'd say research Ammo conservation in the foundary as soon as possible.

That and, despite their seeming inability to hit the blind side of a barn, heavies with the armour piercing promotion and a decent gun and a little luck can one-shot cyberdisks.

Finally, I'd add to the satellite issue: launching as late as possible before the council report, so you can use them to down the panic as necessary.
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#9 silencer_pl

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 01:42 PM

View PostAlan, on 22 October 2012 - 01:24 PM, said:

Finally, I'd add to the satellite issue: launching as late as possible before the council report, so you can use them to down the panic as necessary.

That's what I said :P
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#10 Hobbes

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 03:52 PM

7. Only launch satellites at the end of the month. They're the only way that you can directly affect a country's panic level and it's better to wait to see at the end of the month how the Panic levels are doing after the abductions. Also, some countries will offer you money if you have an undeployed satellite to have it patrolling their airspace.

8. When you start and until you encounter the aliens, move your squad as a whole during the 1st and 2nd Action - first action everyone moves together, then everyone Overwatches for the 2nd. Also keep them together so that you won't activate more than 1 group of enemies at the beginning.

9. Usually, never Overwatch until everyone is finished moving. Otherwise you might uncover any aliens and if soldiers already on Overwatch see them, they'll fire immediately and not fire during the alien's turn.

10. You can also use the above as a tactic (a risky one, but I've used it), if you know where a group of aliens is. Just place everyone out of their sight around them on Overwatch and send the last soldier to activate them. When they break for cover your overwatch soldiers will fire at them as they are scurrying for cover. The risk is that you might not kill anyone and you'll have no actions left when the aliens play. But it's a great show Posted Image

11. Once a soldier gets promoted to Colonel he's off duty for routine missions. This forces you not to get used/dependent to the same team (with the catastrophic effects when you lose 1 or more), opens 1 slot for another soldier to get combat experience and prevents your Colonels from getting killed by bad luck on Abduction/Council missions or from taking Critical Wounds that lower their will.

12. Your first Colonel should be a Support Medic - the longer you keep your soldiers alive, the more they'll get promoted and gain experience.

13. Reload, reload, reload. If you have nothing to do with your unit, reload his weapon. Be always on the lookout for the squad ammo levels or you may find yourself in trouble.

14. Be very, very careful with Ghost Armor on an Assault class with the Close Quarters Specialist skill. Even if you have no actions left your soldier will fire (and lose invisibility) if any enemy unit comes within 4 tiles. This can mean that your Assault can fire, reveal itself and be killed by the rest of the aliens now that they know where he is.

15. There's two great ways to get rid of Sectopods without risking being exposed to their fire: Sniper with Squad Sight and Plasma Sniper Rifle (and take shots at it until it falls). Or 2 Assaults with Alloy Cannons, Rapid Fire and Ghost Armor - the two Assaults can bring down a Sectopod in 1 round with 4 cannon shots. If you don't have Ghost Armor use Lightning Reflexes or the Sectopod's Overwatch shot can kill your soldiers.
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#11 Knan

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 10:13 PM

When should you psi test people? My only two psis were colonels already when tested. Never found anyone else that game.

#12 Ki-tat Chung

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Posted 22 October 2012 - 11:33 PM

That's a good point... when does the game determine when someone is psi capable or not? My first play though I only ended up with a total of three psi capable people, many of which were fairly high ranked already, which would have given them a Will boost already. I kept hiring more troops to keep the Psi Lab busy, but I never found any more psi capable people. Is it because rookies have low Will?
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#13 NKF

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Posted 23 October 2012 - 06:02 AM

The assault class can make an absolutely brilliant scout if you have one set up with the lightning reflexes ability.

Lightning reflexes allow your assault trooper to race ahead into the unknown any negate the very first round of opportunity fire that comes their way with a 100% evasion rate. Then they can back off (to let the aliens follow), use run-and-gun to get up close and personal, or be the eyes for a sniper with squad sight. I've not used the arc thrower yet, but I assume assault troopers would be very handy with it thanks to their ability to safely close the gap, though it does mean abandoning the other useful extras like a SCOPE or chitin plating.

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#14 Sorbicol

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Posted 23 October 2012 - 07:19 AM

You can't use run&gun and the arc thrower. You are better off giving it to a support with sprint.

#15 silencer_pl

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Posted 23 October 2012 - 08:05 AM

I've had plenty squaddies with PSI capabilities.

View PostSorbicol, on 23 October 2012 - 07:19 AM, said:

You can't use run&gun and the arc thrower.

True. But I am still giving them, since they are always in front of the battle.
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#16 NKF

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Posted 23 October 2012 - 09:41 AM

Even without run and gun, just having lightning reflexes to get up to the alien without getting hurt would be valuable indeed.

The other option I suppose would be to use an assault unit with lightning reflexes to trigger the targets reaction shot then have a support unit waltz up to it and take it down. It is doubling up the soldiers a bit though.  ;)

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#17 silencer_pl

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Posted 23 October 2012 - 11:43 AM

You need to weaken the alien first though and it is advisable to have a backup soldier if the stun will not work - even improved Arc Thrower and 95% can fail.
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#18 Alan

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Posted 23 October 2012 - 12:09 PM

Has anyone tried using the snipers weapon disabling shot in conjunction with capture attempts? So far I have only used it as an alternative to killing mind controlled troopers, but i reckon this could be a good use for it.
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#19 Space Voyager

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Posted 23 October 2012 - 01:21 PM

I have and it works great.

#20 ricardo440

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Posted 26 October 2012 - 10:03 PM

View PostAlan, on 23 October 2012 - 12:09 PM, said:

Has anyone tried using the snipers weapon disabling shot in conjunction with capture attempts? So far I have only used it as an alternative to killing mind controlled troopers, but i reckon this could be a good use for it.

I have. Works well.




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