Tuesday, October 9, 2012
My first victory on Normal. Woot.
I have to admit, those beam drones may be weak against a lot of encounters, but against the Rebel Flagship's final form? Wow, do they tear through the super-shield. And that Glaive Beam, too. Doing work.
This was with the good ship Carnelian, which is getting to be one of my favorite layouts. SPOILERS.
Starting out with a teleporter and cloak and three awesome crew members for fighting -- pretty awesome. On another ship, I'd have to drop 75 scrap for that teleporter and another 150 for the cloak, but Carnelian gets them free, and even has Crystal Vengeance to sell for another bonus 40 scrap. And as if it weren't good enough already, the teleporter has four squares, so it can send in some truly frightening boarding parties. Oh, and of course, you get more scrap when you win by killing their crew. Naturally. With a loadout like this, who needs weapons anyway?
Crystals are awesome for boarding. They've got extra HP, so they fight well, but more importantly they can use their special ability to lock down a room. So you can teleport into their weapons bay and activate lockdown to keep them from getting in. Your crew gets to go to town breaking their weapons unmolested, and if they manage to fire off a salvo before the systems go down, just cloak up to dodge it. And then once the weapons are down, you can fight their crew without fear of their medbay: just lock down the room when they get low on health, and they won't be able to escape.
Automated ships and Zoltan Shields are a pain in the ass, but picking up a beam or laser weapon isn't too difficult.
It's also got a pretty decent layout. The most important systems are grouped together on the left side. The teleporter is right next to the medbay. The airlocks are positioned so that you can keep half the ship perpetually vented to fight fires and make boarders' lives very difficult.
In this run, I goofed up and let two of my Crystals die, so I couldn't chain-lockdown. That made things more difficult; the enemy was often able to break through into their weapons room before I could finish destroying it, and I frequently had to make strategic retreats so Maloney's lockdown could recharge. However, I picked up two Mantises and a Rock to round out my boarding party, and I even found up a Slug so I could see the enemies' positions without needing to worry about my sensors.
I found the Glaive Beam towards the end, and it tore the Rebel Flagship to pieces. I just sent in my boarding party to kill all but one of their crew (don't want the AI to take over), and then destroy the shields. Fire bombs took out the weapons, and the cloaks and upgraded engines held back the surge attacks. With the shields down and no crew to repair them (since the one remaining crew member was isolated in the laser room), I could rip into the unprotected hull for 9-12 damage at a time, and the enemy went down in short order. I took so little damage, I didn't need to use any of my nineteen available Hull Repair drones.