You have to live with what you are given. The odds were good enough.
Let's continue. We've got many activities running in the Eastern Europe. We are preparing to assault the network tower, but first we've managed to intercept any reinforcement to this region.
So a team of 5 is up against up to 18 enemies. It won't be easy, specially that in such missions there is a command pod of 6-8. Scary stuff. Unfortunately here we cannot use elevation to our advantage. Though thanks to suppressors we can try (or SV can try) to silently pick weaker enemies. First we had 2 turrets on the front of the train. This alerted 2 nearby pods but they weren't too difficult to clear, a lots of suppression between Grizzly and Jax. We've almost lost Grizzly due to AI aiming shenanigans, because you know AI can hit 7/10 times 30 or lower % hits, while XCOM 7/10 times will miss 75%+ shots. Once those initial pods were taken care of it was time to slow hunt for more. And we found a Berserker and two snakes. The berserker went down pretty fast and the snakes sort of went crazy and didn't really pose a threat. One even gave up and just stood in place just for us to kill it. And then it was the command pod.
Heavy mech, Longbow Mech, 2 muton centurions and a shieldbearer. Damn nasty stuff. And on top of that our sharpshooter turned into bluntshooter. Mecs were a priority, didn't want those missiles to land on our faces while also keeping those Mutons at bay. If they throw that grenade it's game over. And it almost went game over to Lara. Bad move but she lives.
Next on our list was that Network Tower mission. It's the same mission as the penultimate mission in the Vanilla, except that when you are spotted, ADVENT will drop constant reinforcements on your rear. So it needs a little more sneakiness.
How to safely approach this mission. Well best bet would be to bring a Shinobi specialized in passing by enemy patrols. That way you minimize the risk of early detection, though at later stages, You probably want one specialized in locking down melee oriented aliens like Mutons and Archons. So you take your shinobi up to the command center and park him right besides the console. A specialist would be even better but that's super risky. With the other 4 in your team you try to find a spot where you can prepare an ambush for 2-3 pods that are patrolling outside of the command zone. Once you hack the console you have 3 turns of complete enemy domination, as they are stunned for a long time. It also prevents any reinforcements. Once executed properly, you go super loud.
If everything was set up perfectly, all 3 pods should be dealt with and only the command pod should remain. It either patrols on the roof or just stands in the room behind the console. If your shinobi still has concealment he can scout and provide a safe path for the team to ambush the command pod. And then you just kill them. Succeeding this mission grants you the access to region HQ, and provides a relay tower in the region. Unfortunately this also acts as if new tower was built so it also increases the cost of next tower, and the costs are super high.
Also our first network tower mission reveals the location of the black site. It's always on the farthest end of the planet. So we started in Asia, now we should try to contact Chile. The fastest way will be through Europe and then Brasil. We won't be assigning team for the HQ now, because there is one more mission to do, and I want to have more options in soldier selection. If you invade Lion's lair, you need to be prepared.
A simple mission, intel collecting mission, but it almost cost a life of 2 soldiers. Thankfully not the candidates for the upcoming HQ assault.
Oh and I forgot, that we are also waiting for Slaughterer to return from his Smash and Grab mission.
Approaching the storage building was not easy. Enemy had better covering position, but Slaughterer is talented leader.
A good positioning here and there, a little suppression, a little covering fire and we are inside. There also looked pretty hairy thanks to the snakes, but we've managed, more supplies for the main assault.
And with that we can now assemble the team for the HQ assault. All armed with laser weapons and 2 experimental magnetic weapons.
Infiltration will take a long time, so we will need to boost it. The vigilance in this sector is very high and enemies will be reinforcing this sector fast. And as I said that, we found another reinforcement train, but it was too late to make use of that. Fortunately a moment later we've got a tip for a Troop column that we can take out to reduce enemy strength in this region.
Doom shield indeed, protecting our troops that will openly fight against the Doom aliens are planing. Anyway, our start was not in a good position, had to run around the map to find a good place. We found a good place and there was a small pod of snakes. We initiated ambush on them and waited for other pods to come running. Majorly it was a very static combat. It was mostly up to 2 soldiers to keep hurting the enemies, while our gunner keep them suppressed all the times.
There were few incidents, but overall we came victorious.
This mission helped a little, but soon after another reinforcement train was spotted, again to late and to make things worse, we've also found plans on ADVENT attacking our Haven in Eastern Europe. Fortunately once they begun the assault we were ready to storm their HQ. And destroying their HQ means all ongoing operations are aborted. And the ones we are infiltrating will receive massive infiltration boost. Anyways here is the grand mission of the liberation chain.
The map is huge with a lot of buildings. A lot of turrets can be heard, so it will be hard to find a good sniping position. Our initial spot was in the middle of the map. We found 3 pods wandering there, so it was not a good place to start a firefight, specially that if we go loud we will activate the command pod, and that would mean total failure of this mission.
So I had another idea, a little risky, too risky, but it might pay off. The idea is to use our two sniper and clear some turrets above the building were possible the command pod is located. It will not active it, because suppressor limit the sound area, and they will not spot and corpses / wrecks to investigate. However it will put on alert those 3 other pods. Once the turrets are destroyed we high tail to other well defended position, and snipers move even further back to protect the team from flanking moves and to kill anyone foolish enough to stand in the open (at least from their side). I've sort of couldn't believe that it worked, but here we are, two pods clumped all together, so Mr. T gets the call and fires that rocket and after that another one goes, blasting almost two entire pods to hell.
Unfortunately this did not reach that muton with snakes pods, but they did not make any impact in that firefight. However a pod of drones came and they almost wasted Horst. And here is Mr. T wasting that Muton.
Next on the agenda was to fallback and deal with the turrets overwatching our starting location. We need them removed so our snipers would have safe position when assaulting the command pod. Once the turrets were down, we've moved back forward again only to discover another Muton pod with Berserker.
This encounter went easier then it would look like, thanks to Ristykay that suddenly headshoting Muton hiding behind high cover. Once they were dead, it was time to move the snipers and prepare the assault for the command pod. Our journey back was halted by another pod with Berserker.
Was a little dicey, but we move forward. So now we are set, there was another 2 drone pod in front of the main building, but against 10 soldiers it was just free XP. Once ready, we say hello to the General.
And his merry band.
A little fire here, a little sniper trickshots there, a concussion missile to the face and we've got that pod under control, and then last pod of 2 snakes and a drone pops in.
Pretty dicey moment there but I saved that one command action for Doomguy to finish the mission.
And that's done, we've liberated the Eastern Europe for now. The assault on our Heaven was aborted and we are mopping up the rest of the Advent in this region. Upon clearing our first ADVENT HQ, we unlock the doom tracker. Removing HQ reduces 1 point from it, so we are currently at 5 pips, but that will raise super fast.
One of the last missions in Easter Europe is to counter one of the Dark Events.
With ADVENT forces on the retreat from this region, the enemy strength for this mission is reduced to minimum. This allows us to easy finish it without any problems.
Unfortunately this is the end of this campaign. I've been busy advancing it way way ahead, and around half of the game I was too hard pressed with bad luck. On one side Aliens were very close to finishing the Avatar project. Our only hope was to assault their facility. However here is the catch. Alien activity in this facility is swarming, unless the region is liberated, and when you start fight aliens will constantly be dropping reinforcments. Not to mention there is huqe pod patroling the place where you need to put the bomb and in addition I was seeing Sectopods with 102 HP, without barely having access to coil guns and no means of dealing with that kind of threat. On the other front, Advent made retaliation mission on one of the liberated regions - the one that I had no faceless and could scavenge safely for supplies. Those missions are also brutal, because first you have to destroy reinforcement obelisk (the same thing you need to destroy in Avenger defense), while fighting massive amounts of troops on the map, rescuing your rebels and fighting ever increasing reinforcements (that can also include a Sectopod). Just simply over the top unbalanced stuff. So yeah I will be starting new campaign hopefully this time it will be better.