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Author Topic: Mary Sue Aliens  (Read 11667 times)

Offline ManicMiner

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Mary Sue Aliens
« on: December 03, 2012, 11:41:01 pm »
Is it me?

I've started a new game to clear off the weight issue and all's been fine till the new aliens appeared at the same time as the needler. These aliens appear to be able to walk 30 units, shoot a volley at the dropship with >90% accuracy, and they STILL have time left over to reaction-fire to death anyone who takes a footstep at the end of their round. I lost five of my best troops before the end of round 2 because no sooner had they stepped clear of the dropship they were cut down by volleys of crossfire from aliens that were halfway across the other side of a large map!

Offline Triaxx2

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Re: Mary Sue Aliens
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2012, 04:06:41 am »
No. It's not just you. As far as I can tell, the aliens simply have infinite TU.

Offline GPS51

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Re: Mary Sue Aliens
« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2013, 05:06:58 am »
Well now that explains a lot of what I'm seeing, although I figure the aliens TU to be ~40 or 50. I find it interesting because I've just given up my campaign at the same point due to being outgunned/outmanned and cut down off the start each mission. I'm very much interested in continuing my campaign, I typically use 2 snipers (who have been shooting for months and are up to 33 accuracy), 2 or 3 plasma rifles (for burst capabilities), 1 riot shotgun, 1 grenade launcer and 1 laser rifle. I'd totally love to find out how folks are either leveling up troops so they can actually hit what they fire at or how to keep them alive without restarting the mission 5+ times. The last straw was when I went to clean up a crashed scout and was hit by 6-9 heavy aliens who gunned me down post haste. I understand about cover and reaction fire and so on but.... I'm back to sitting in cover and watching the aliens walk through my prepared fields of fire to flank and kill units all in 1 turn. I dunno what to do anymore, ortnoks in heavy armor with needle guns + mass TU was gg. (I find it ironic my units highest skill is explosive from all the close range grenade chucking, does this not seem to say that using actual weapons should be a viable means of killing aliens?)
« Last Edit: January 07, 2013, 05:11:24 am by GPS51 »

Offline kurja

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Re: Mary Sue Aliens
« Reply #3 on: January 07, 2013, 08:00:17 am »
I've dropped almost all armour for the extra TU, only maybe 2 guys have nano armour and I use them as my " RF guards". Needlers are murderous at all ranges, so I use a lot of smoke for cover against more distant enemies and fire against them through the smoke - you only need a spotter to see where the enemy is. AFAIK lasers are still unaffected by smoke. In closer encounters I find it best to try and get more than one soldier in there at a time for a guaranteed kill, when that doesn't seem likely then it's better to retreat - a live alien with a needler near your guys at end of your turn spells death. Alien reaction fire is really lethal too as you've noticed, so it's practical to move to it's side or rear before shooting - they won't RF if they can't see the shooter. That means you can deploy smoke to block line of sight, then shoot with everything you got - bullets hurt just as much whether or not you can still see the target. Indirect fire is also superb, grenade launcher and thrown grenades. I use ARs with encased plasma ammo, laser rifles and grenade launchers with plasma ammo. Plasma blades are handy in close quarters. Casualties are still common, but I find that only a good thing in comparison to earlier versions where it was almost a freak accident to lose a soldier. Yesterday I actually lost a battle fair and square and I was delighted!!!

Offline Telok

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Re: Mary Sue Aliens
« Reply #4 on: January 07, 2013, 10:40:31 am »
The weight system not only has a TU penalty for a soldier carrying over half his encumbrance limit, it also has a TU bonus for being under 1/3rd or 1/4th your encumbrance limit. So if an alien with 33 TU is carrying very little gear or has a high strength and encumbrance he'll get something like 8 to 11 bonus TUs.

To add to this you need to realize that there are subdivisions within the aliens that you cannot discern during game play. The simplest method of demonstrating this is to go into the Single Player -> Skirmish mode and select the aliens as your team. It will give you a selection box to choose the alien race of your team where you will note that there are three different Taman entries in that list. On one of those entries the Tamans have attributes similar to starting soldiers, on another all of the Taman's abilities are 75s to 90s. Those high end Taman start off better than your end game veteran soldiers.

About that reaction fire... There’s a whole thread on the front page of the Discussion forum talking about it and where I've been trying to nail down how RF actually works in the game. My results so far have been, counter intuitive, to say the least. RF relies more on how many shots you fire, or how many TUs the RF shot takes perhaps, than it does on your chances to hit the target.

Offline GPS51

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Re: Mary Sue Aliens
« Reply #5 on: January 07, 2013, 07:09:24 pm »
I tried using a smoke grenade and lagged out my high end pc (otherwise I like that option), thanks for the tips guys! ( and yes RF is counter intiutive, like yesterday when a guy with 0 armor and a flame thrower set to RF watched an alien walk towards him and stop on the tile in front of him, he must of been on smoke break ;) ).

Offline kurja

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Re: Mary Sue Aliens
« Reply #6 on: January 07, 2013, 09:03:32 pm »
I tried using a smoke grenade and lagged out my high end pc (otherwise I like that option),

see http://ufoai.org/forum/index.php/topic,6755.msg56210.html#msg56210

thanks for the tips guys! ( and yes RF is counter intiutive, like yesterday when a guy with 0 armor and a flame thrower set to RF watched an alien walk towards him and stop on the tile in front of him, he must of been on smoke break ;) ).

=) the gist of it is rather simple really, for say 12TU RF to take place a target must first spend 12 or more TU within sight of the RF'ng unit. If an alien walks 5 squares within sight that's 10 TU which is less than 12 so no reaction fire. Beyond that there are a few factors but that's the bottom line. (as far as I know, ofc....)

Offline GPS51

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Re: Mary Sue Aliens
« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2013, 12:32:02 am »
Thanks to the help I got on first fixing the fps drop and then figuring out how to use smoke grenades, my play through rolls on! However I was curious if there's a new mechanic in play that keeps killing off the aliens I've captured, I've never got more then 1 or 2 in my containment unit despite capturing 15 or 25 of them. Anyone know?

Offline DarkRain

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Re: Mary Sue Aliens
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2013, 01:11:56 am »
Not, that I know of, have you checked that they are actually being delivered to your base? I remember people reporting problems bringing back captured aliens to their bases.

Offline GPS51

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Re: Mary Sue Aliens
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2013, 01:31:01 am »
They are being delivered but they seem to disappear after that or very good 3d replica's are being delivered :^)

Offline vuser

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Re: Mary Sue Aliens
« Reply #10 on: February 21, 2013, 06:39:43 pm »
I also experienced a huge difficulty spike in the game when the above mentioned aliens first appeared. It was at the time when I felt in control, I had great equipment and I was steamrolling the aliens in every battle. I got utterly destroyed in my first battle when the aliens returned with better forces.

However, I think I've found a way to counter it. The trick lies in how you use reaction fire.


         . UFO
        .
       .
      .######
       ######
       ##
      @##

#: wall
@: your soldiers facing North
UFO: expected enemy position.
... : path the aliens take
    


With the above RF strategy, you will get on at the beginning with some casualties, and by the mid-game with some new researched weapons you might even feel invincible, defeating the aliens every time with no or few casualties. And when the aliens begin to send better troops, you will fail miserably.

Why?
Because the aliens spot you the same time as you spot them! They try to fire their guns, receive exactly one RF from each of your solders which at this time is not enough to kill them, then unload their full magazine of needles into you, wiping out most of your squad in one turn.

         ... UFO
      ...     
   ...#########
...   #########
         ######
         ##
        @##


In the above case, the aliens walk trough your field of vision, and receive reaction shots just by walking! Even if they spot you, they are already wounded and further reaction shots kill them with high probability.
If you don't have buildings with the features depicted above, you can create this situation with smoke grenades. I never used them before, but they proved to be very valuable for this job. Even if your situation is not exactly as I depicted, you can see the general idea: let the enemy walk through your field of vision, rather than into your field of vision from the front.
« Last Edit: February 21, 2013, 06:43:29 pm by vuser »

Offline GPS51

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Re: Mary Sue Aliens
« Reply #11 on: February 21, 2013, 09:41:07 pm »
I found a very different approach to dealing with end game (or all) aliens. Just pop a smoke grenade outside the dropship and move all troops into it. Now wait for the AI to orc rush you. Move units out of smoke cloud 1 tile then back in to provide LOS for all other units. End game.

Offline vuser

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Re: Mary Sue Aliens
« Reply #12 on: February 21, 2013, 09:53:44 pm »
I found a very different approach to dealing with end game (or all) aliens. Just pop a smoke grenade outside the dropship and move all troops into it. Now wait for the AI to orc rush you. Move units out of smoke cloud 1 tile then back in to provide LOS for all other units. End game.

I've seen a solution to this overpowered feature in other games (maybe JA2?): units who don't see their targets directly (so they target only by shared LOS), get an accuracy penalty. No too big, so this tactic is still useful, but not game-breaking.

Offline Triaxx2

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Re: Mary Sue Aliens
« Reply #13 on: February 22, 2013, 01:00:32 am »
I just started using Auto-battle. I lose about one soldier every battle whether I play or auto-battle, so it's no big deal.

Offline Kiki

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Re: Mary Sue Aliens
« Reply #14 on: April 16, 2013, 11:07:25 pm »
I have to agree with GPS51 smoke is a real life saver.