Rollers Really are Impossible - Heeelp !!


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#1 Negator_UK

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 09:33 AM

I'm near the end of my first age of AL (Imposssible Level), and I have an answer for everything Rollers.

They have ben a constant source of annoyance for the whole game, causing constant stupid reloads, but I now have about 40% Mars, with the beastmen having another 40%. I am wrangling hard over a metal mine which should get me gatling weapon, but I can't stop aliens interrupting the technical truck in this region. Beastmen invade, I beat them back, then martians, then more beastmen.

But my real pain is Rollers.

The ufopeadia says they are vulnerable to flame weapons, but closest thing I have is incendiary rockets. I have done all the research except things needing irrigation which I won't get as the martians are nearly dead)  and psi (no capture missions in the two remaining reticulan regions and I am still allied with expedition for the moment).

So how do I get Rollers - four at a time, plus half a dozen Matriachs is too much !!

#2 Patupi

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 07:26 PM

Ballistic weapons if you can't get incendiary. If you can use Beastmen guns with incendiary that would help but the ammo can be in short supply. Tip, if on your recovery screen after a mission with beastmen shamans you see two red ammo and two green (paralyze and AP) the pistol somewhere nearby should have an acid ammo mag in it. Take the pistols near there and swap ammo around till you find it.

I generally go for shotguns vs rollers, though rifles on automatic (once your people have more kills, thus more skill at such illusive prey) can work too. Because they are so hard to hit area effect weapons work too. Short range blasts from the warp weapons does good work too, though the time to aim is a pig and they can hit you before it can fire sometimes.

#3 Negator_UK

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 02:36 PM

I tried beastman acid ammo today and I'm not sure if it did any good, although looking a the paralysis ammo got me thinking. Does that work on beastmen ?? On Rollers ?

I know warp works well and my warp-dude has beastman anatomy for extra punch, but its too easy to warp your own man, very often the rollers move so fast anyone aiming does nearly 180 degrees before getting a shot off. This also makes shotguns a pain.

Acid seems to kill its target over time too, which makes it less useful, unless I equip a dual-pistol dude with acid and stalking and try some wacky ambush tactic.
I did kill a roller today with 3 guys messing around with it, would not have worked if I hadn't gotten it alone though.

I don't have cloaks yet, but If I wore a cloak and smell-absorber would I be able to hide from them ???

#4 Patupi

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 03:31 PM

Acid is more likely to work (ie start them burning, it always does damage) with the big gun, and much more likely with the cannon. Dual pistols does work (I've killed rollers with dual human pistols, not just beastmen ones loaded with acid), but they don't always start burning. With the ALTR mod the flamethrower has a MUCH higher chance of setting people on fire (like almost always!) and it lasts longer than the normal burning duration. I think they also lengthened the Beastmen acid 'burning' duration as well for that mod.

In vanilla it's a little more tricky, but I'd always use someone with Beastmen anatomy and major athletics to dodge around them. Note. If you can't move because the Roller is too close put time on slow and keep trying to move. I think it just gets the larger roller's 'footprint' confused with the soldier's and he/she can't find an empty spot to move to. Even if the roller doesn't move much, or even if it moves closer to you, I often find a quarter second is enough to get your soldier able to move again.

If you have your soldiers clustered then friendly fire incidents can be nasty, especially with the shotgun. But at least the range is short so I tend to group my troops fairly loosely for those tactics, or in a line that blocks the roller from moving between them. Then at least I can cancel the orders of those in the middle if the roller sneaks around the line.

Honestly I only had trouble with rollers (even whole groups of them) when I first played and didn't realise that anything other than bullets (and possibly grenades, though it's tricky to actually hit them with that) isn't really effective against them. Mostly I find as long as I don't charge towards where the enemy spawns that the rollers don't group together much. They move so randomly they come at me at groups of two at most.

As to the smell absorber, I've honestly never used it. I probably should try that, though as you said, you'd likely need a combination of smell absorber and stealth training to avoid vision and sound as well.

#5 Negator_UK

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 11:26 PM

I've tried the acid and its not working, although I am progressing by using a "Claude bug" - I noticed the rollers seemed to gang-bang Claude and so I have him run around while the rest of the team kills everything else. Its either that or they take him out completely in a second anyway.

He's led 3 rollers around the map a couple of times for me now.

I finally got my 6th metal, courtesy of a trade with the Expedition, but gatlings don't seem to hurt rollers either. I'm going to try 4xRocket droids, but they can be killed by a matriarch with a single shot.

"With the ALTR mod the flamethrower has a MUCH higher chance of setting people on fire"

So there is no flamethrower in vanilla ?

#6 Patupi

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 02:21 AM

Sort of, but it's no where near as good. Once you research Plasma tech after talking to Martians you can get your people (or allied Martians) to use plasma cannons, but they don't set people on fire, just do fire damage... plus take forever to aim, and then ready between shots. The 'plasma shot' mode that throws balls of plasma also gives a slow moving ball that takes forever to reach the target, and is a small explosion area. You pretty much always miss any moving target except at close range! The Plasma throw (flamethrower mode) is a little better, but still very slow to aim and you get three shots per clip! I'm doing a mod at the moment where one aim is to make Martian EM and Plasma weapons more accessible earlier in the game (because by the time you get them most enemies are either immune to EM or easier to kill with other weapons) and also makes plasma weapons more deadly, both robot mounted and hand held martian versions. I also made them set people on fire, though not quite as easily as the ALTR flamethrower and not for as long.

As to the 'follow this guy!' thing, I think it has to do with how much you carry, or what you carry. On different missions certain enemies (like rollers and elementals) will just follow one person round the map, but it changes as to who gets followed. I suppose it could be the level, ie follow the highest level person. For me it's usually Samantha, but then I usually get her to have dual pistols and tons of ammo so it might just be her load out.

Gatlings don't hurt them? That I haven't come across. Usually Gatlings mess them up at close range for me. Usually if I use Gatlings it's one guy, with a couple of flankers with rifles on aimed burst. Bear in mind the more kills your guys have the higher their accuracy is, no matter what their stats are. Often I make sure one guy is the one to get the 'kills' just to get a bit more of the experience for that person and get his/her kills higher and more accurate. On vanilla the average of soldier, scientist and technician skill levels gives you the enemy level, so try to strike a balance between rushing lots of combat and increasing soldiers ahead of the scientists and thus getting tougher enemies before you've researched good stuff... and letting too many missions go by and getting lots of tech, but not very good soldiers to fight the improved enemies with!

(EDIT: Oh, and BTW just incase you haven't tried it, paralyze does work on Rollers, actually on all organic targets. I've done it with pistols too, though it doesn't work enough times to be very useful with that. I'd stick with Cannon on Paralyze ammo if you do. It's higher chance of working, plus it always hits at least for some damage, thus always a chance of paralyzing.)

#7 Negator_UK

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 11:47 PM

Ok, Claude lost his magic roller attraction when I changed the squad leader, it does seem to go after the latest entry or some such. When Benat joined they went after him, and when Olga joined they went after her. It really does look like a bug, but its just as well as I'd never get any shooting done if I couldn't get away with everyone else ignoring them.

You're right, Gatlings do work against rollers, but more accurately they suck less against rollers. About 3 in a row do take one out eventually, unless one of them is the rollers favourite today.

I've also noticed the Beastman HQ mission is no longer available after, well, you know, a certain point in the game. So maybe allowing me to attack it before that point was just the game's little joke.

I've savaged the beastman lands with some serious play this last two days, but I don't think I'll have time to beat it in the Holidays.

My latest problem is that I think the tech tree is bugged, the unavailable tab says I can't research acid weapons without beastman acid grenades, but I have over 150 !!!!

My levels are all over 21 now and I have one at 26. Olga went from level 5 to 19 in her first mission and all she did was deploy - no shots fired or kills.

The 4xRocket droid was good fun, but died on his second time out, taking out one of the warp machines from afar in the last beastman portal mission.

Mission profile is currently sniper rifle and gatlings for most beastmen, lasers for matriarchs and claude-benat-olga-bug for rollers - whatever works !!

I won't be making friends with the martians unless they actually pony up a capture mission for me, as thats what many of my other unavailable research paths need. This is also holding back plasma research I think...

#8 Patupi

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Posted 04 January 2013 - 12:58 AM

Ahh yes, the acid thing. Yeah it's a git. Something is up with salvaging acid grenades and acid ammo. Technically you need both to research acid weapons, but for some reason sometimes it doesn't register one of them as salvaged to engage the research even if you have salvaged both. Sometimes for me if you take one of each (grenade and ammo) and leave it on the battlefield, then salvage it at the end this engages the research... sometimes it doesn't :( I've tried a few things, but a some mods alter it so you only need one of them. Usually just acid ammo.

Yeah, snipers are a lot of fun. On matriarchs though their 'bullet dodge' does make sniper rifles less effective. Once your snipers have enough kills (usually somewhere from 500 to 1000 from memory) they should have enough accuracy to hit Matriarchs somewhat, and taking leg shots is very useful against them! Even if it doesn't do much damage. Leg shots, then follow up with Laser cannon usually does good.

Um, can't think off hand, but I'm pretty sure the capture mission isn't desperately important for Martians. It doesn't give much for Reticulans I know, just some info and Psi defence unit. As long as you can get Martian language and have the Moon missions done you should be fine for the end game. You need terraforming to a high level to make the... well I won't spoil it for you. The end game anyway. And that means terraforming level two, which needs EM principles.

#9 Negator_UK

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Posted 04 January 2013 - 09:12 AM

I have the second stage of terraforming now. The tech tree drops occasional random stuff, I had advanced mining a couple of days ago ! But the tree is blank at the moment.

I'm letting the martian and the reticulans grow back a bit to try and get reticulan commander and martian soldier capture missions. But I'll reduce the beastmen to  one territory and then think about starting upgrading the terraforming.

I think I saw on the forum somewhere (this one ?) that too much terraforming screws the martians and the game (there is a flooded region next to martian HQ already) but my science vehicle is currently building geosondes anyway.

Is this true ?or can I terraform to my hearts content -  after all I do like to be beside the seaside :-)

#10 Patupi

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Posted 04 January 2013 - 02:19 PM

If you ally with the Martians and then terraform to roughly 2/3 they break the treaty with you and make war again as the terraforming isn't compatible with their physiology. Then you research compatible terraforming and you can make peace with them again. That's the only problem with advanced terraforming I know of. They might be talking about the flooding. If the Martians have only one or two teritories and they flood the race will disappear. Could cause problems if you haven't researched EM principles I guess, though how you'd terraform that much without EM principles is beyond me!

I usually end up with a blank tech tree by the time I'm into the last part of the game. As long as you've had the Laputians launch a manned ship to you you should be fine.

#11 Negator_UK

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 10:27 AM

I've received the Laputian ship a while ago and have finally reduced the Beastmen to 1 territory - you were right about gatlings, although what really made rollers killable (and thereby beastmen generally) was the Claude-Olga-Menat-bug, although whether its due to joining order or loadout I can't say. I can use fixed teams to maintain the exploit and have plenty of time between missions to heal.

I'm done playing this for these holidays, I guess when I get back to this I'll be wiping out the martians and reticulans and then turning on the expedition until i get the planet green enough to attack the beastmen HQ.

You mention EM principles - I don't know if my game is bugged, but I have the big human-made EM weapons (Magnetic Rifles) available for killing robots and I have the upgrade button available when building stuff in the globe view - if that's enough to finish then I can do it, otherwise I'm screwed.

#12 Patupi

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 03:22 PM

If you can build EM rifle and the Annihilator then you have researched EM principles and plasma principles. EM principles gets renamed once you research it to whichever researcher was in charge (ie highest level) of that research project when it completes. 'The Ramirez principle' or the equivalent.

You've had the report about what the Laputians brought with them in their second ship? It should be obvious that's the thing that allows you to win the game. I've never actually tried to attack the Beastmen fortress before that point but apparently you can, you just have to retreat as the enemy just keeps coming. After the Laputians bring their 'gift' and the planet's terraformed enough for it to spread you can do that last 2 level mission to win the game.

#13 Negator_UK

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 04:16 PM

I don't have plasma principles and I need a martian soldier to get it, which I don't think I'm going to get. If I need it I can try to let the martians reconquer mars by ignoring their invasions, but the only missions I seem to get from them are kill all units or destroy object.

#14 Patupi

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 05:43 PM

Try saving whenever one of their territories goes blank with no mission circle, then run the time on until the mission that turns up IS a capture mission. if it isn't reload and try again. For some reason the Martian ones always seem to give me capture missions more than the others. Beast and Ret captures happen once, and if you miss them... tough! For me anyway. I haven't missed them much, I usually go for them when they turn up as soon as possible. Martian ones... I keep getting. Even after I've done the capture mission I get more! Odd.

I don't recall you needing plasma principles, just EM principles, to win the game, but I could be remembering wrong *shrugs*. I usually get both anyway, just to get the annihilator gun (on vanilla anyway, on ALTR the flamethrower with advanced fuel is actually better, if a little shorter ranged)

#15 Negator_UK

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Posted 05 January 2013 - 10:27 PM

I'll try the assault on beastman central (without plasma) when I get back to the game, which may be in a few months as I can only really play it during the holidays.

Thanks for the help patupi , I'll post how I get on.

#16 Negator_UK

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Posted 06 April 2013 - 05:34 PM

Well, looks like this nut was cracakble after all.

Once terraforming broke 80% the beastmens HQ was invadeable (thanks to the earth virus) again and all that worry about not finishing the tech tree was for nought. Wiped out the reticulans trying to get some techs unlocked to no avail - should have just terraformed & would have finished the game sooner.

mind you- does this game have multiple endings ? the end video seemed kind of generic.

Overall good game, but with enough weird issues to make it difficult to play sometimes.

Rollers clearly look like something put in late in the design of the game once they realised that leg-sniping is quite strong in this game.

& it doesn't look Ironman friendly.

But I'll play again, and see if I can farm the reticulans for lasers to kill beastmen with...

Thanks all, especially Patupi.

See you n the xcom 2012 forum :)




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