Home » SIRTECH CLASSICS » Jagged Alliance 2 » JA2 Solutions. Tips. Spoilers! » 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?
30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #158799] Sun, 23 September 2007 02:29 Go to next message
rietori

 
Messages:10
Registered:September 2007
I just started playing, using 1.13 and I wonder if this is intended. After starting the game I went to Drassen and took over the mine. Then I put my mercs back to north of Drassen because I wanted to let them recover. I had only 3 mercs because I thought I'd save some money... uh.
Then it said the mine was taken back by enemies... so I reloaded and put my mercs near the mine. After a while it said 15 people were in the area, and I started the battle. I started shooting them and a looong and hard battle ensued. But no matter how many enemies I killed, more and more appeared and I was being totally overrun. I went back to the overview screen once and the drassen square with the mine was all filled up with red dots. When I clicked the pause button and the red screen came up, it said something like 35 enemies in the area, and I had killed so many already...

Do I have to buy 6 mercs and immediately train militia when I get Drassen so I can defend it against 40 or more enemies? I played on normal difficulty so it seemed a bit over the top.
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #158800] Sun, 23 September 2007 03:03 Go to previous messageGo to next message
cdunigan

 
Messages:135
Registered:September 2007
Location: Madison, Wisconsin, USA
Read this thread:

http://www.ja-galaxy-forum.com/board/ubbthreads.php/ubb/showflat/Number/136761/page/1#Post136761

It explains the situation and how you can alter it, if you'd like.
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #158837] Sun, 23 September 2007 16:17 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rietori

 
Messages:10
Registered:September 2007
Ohh, thank you. I had seen the thread some time before but didn't read it, and now that I found myself in the same situation I didn't remember it. Silly me...

I wonder if it's even possible to do this battle so early, if you're not expecting it and preparing for it. But then I never bothered picking up the enemies weapons during battle, I just stuck to the rifle/pistol thingies I had. But yesterday I found out it's actually a huge difference wheter you use a GOOD rifle or a bad one. (I thought they were all more or less the same ^^) Like if you hire Scope at the beginning, she can just mow down everything almost by herself. So I tried giving her rifle to another merc with high marksmanship and it was the same. But the ammo that comes with her is so limited, only about 60 rounds I think. Wouldn't last until the end of the Drassen battle, if there are really ~130 soldiers attacking.

I always thought Drassen would be the easiest mine to take, as the game suggests you to go there at the start. And unless I have an income of some sorts I feel under pressure to take the mine as quickly as I can, or else my mercs will leave when I run out of money.
Oh yes... is there a way to sell the guns/ammo I get from dead enemies?
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #158856] Sun, 23 September 2007 18:53 Go to previous messageGo to next message
cdunigan

 
Messages:135
Registered:September 2007
Location: Madison, Wisconsin, USA
rietori

I wonder if it's even possible to do this battle so early, if you're not expecting it and preparing for it.

So do many others, but there are just as many who adore this battle. It's an ongoing debate. Mostly, they seem to be heading in the direction of defaulting to 'false' for this battle, so it doesn't overwhelm those not expecting it, but can still be chosen by those who love it.

rietori

But then I never bothered picking up the enemies weapons during battle, I just stuck to the rifle/pistol thingies I had. But yesterday I found out it's actually a huge difference wheter you use a GOOD rifle or a bad one.

Oooh yeah! Smile

rietori

(I thought they were all more or less the same ^^)

Oooh no! Wink

rietori

And unless I have an income of some sorts I feel under pressure to take the mine as quickly as I can, or else my mercs will leave when I run out of money.

Since you're just learning about the importance of good weaponry, I have to assume there are many other important facts you don't know yet. I'll try not to give it away all at once. Suffice it to say for now that there are other sources of income beyond the mines.

rietori

Oh yes... is there a way to sell the guns/ammo I get from dead enemies?

Of course. Seems there's a lot left to learn - which is great. Discovering the depth of the game is a huge part of the enjoyment. I actually envy you - you're in for a real treat!

First hint - those wandering civilians are not just for decoration. Try talking to them. And don't think you can ignore towns you've already conquered. Sometimes someone very helpful may pop up in them.

And if I'm way off base, and telling you things you already know, just say so. I'll upgrade my information based on what you already know.
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #158877] Sun, 23 September 2007 21:46 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rietori

 
Messages:10
Registered:September 2007
No I basically don't know anything about this game it seems. =) I tried to find some kind of FAQ about what to do first but didn't find anything useful. Thanks a lot for giving me hints though. I know that new weapons get delivered at the Drassen airport but I can't find a way to buy any. But the pistols I can find aren't any good. So what I did was hire mercs only for 1 day and if the contract ends, hire another one so I get a new weapon. But only the ones with guns that seem good, like Scope. She has a nice sniper rifle.
But then I tried to conquer another mine, the one in the upper left corner... it wasn't a good idea. I had only my IMP who is a decent sniper with Scope's gun, Len and Dimitri with me. (Short on money) But whenever the fight starts, the enemies swarm my people like crazy. Like it's always 5 running towards me and I can't take them all down before they start to fire and hurt my people. Eventually they wear me down and also my good ammo gets low and only pistol ammo is left. But these soldiers at chitzena mine seem to have way better armor, it takes several shots from the sniper rifle to the head until they die (uh huh...) Pistols barely hurt them at all. =(

Edit: Oh I just found out why the bullets didn't do much. I was using the hollow-point ammunition which isn't good against armor. Problem is I don't have anything else.

[Updated on: Sun, 23 September 2007 22:38] by Moderator

Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #158915] Mon, 24 September 2007 05:17 Go to previous messageGo to next message
cdunigan

 
Messages:135
Registered:September 2007
Location: Madison, Wisconsin, USA
Since you seem to be getting a bit frustrated, I'll speed up the hints a little.

First and foremost, if you're out of money and can't find ways to get more, there's no shame in starting over and managing your money better the next time.

Buying guns: go back to AIM and click on Links. There's a site in there that will probably interest you. There are other ways to buy guns, too, but I'll try to let you learn about them for yourself.

While everyone develops their own style of play, until you get more comfortable with the game, I'd suggest not hiring your mercs one at a time. At the start, choose a few (four is probably enough on Novice) relatively cheap mercs, and hire them for a full week. It'll probably take you that long to figure a few things out and establish a steady income, and you don't want to have to worry every day about getting someone new from the drop point to where you need them. Don't worry too much about what kind of guns they have for now. You'll find or buy better. As you're finding out, just one or two mercs isn't really enough, even on the Novice level. And if you aren't playing on Novice, I'd recommend it. It's not as easy as it might sound.

Back to choice of mercs. Not everyone can do everything, so you'll need a diverse team: at least one with decent medical skill and one with decent mechanical skill. Both people and gear get broken, and you'll need to fix them. Explosives skill can wait a little, but it becomes more important as the game progresses. Marksmanship is good, but it's also one of the fastest to increase. Wisdom affects how fast they learn, as well as how well they can doctor and build/disarm explosives. Health and agility combined affect how fast they move. Agility alone affects how silently they move when using stealth. Dexterity affects how fast and how well they do things like first aid, lockpicking, repairing, and disarming bombs. Leadership affects how well they train militia and teach other mercs. Choose people that have a range of skills. For the start of the game, and for a beginner, stay on the bottom three rows of mercs at AIM. You won't be able to afford the better ones until much later. Besides which, some of those guys 'n' gals will improve so fast you may not want even want the better ones when you can afford them.

I know I'm repeating myself, but I can't stress this enough. After you finish a fight, talk to everyone. Walk around and search for people to talk to. Talk to them repeatedly until they either won't talk to you any more, or keep saying the same things. If you can't remember what they said, look at your Dialog history on the strategic map screen. They will tell you things you really need to know. I personally believe it's loads more fun to learn what you need to know in the game, than it is to search out a guide that will just tell it to you. Some things in the game are pretty obscure, but most of it you should be able to experiment with and figure out without that kind of help. For instance, and this is a little bit of a giveaway, someone in Drassen will give you a hint about where in Arulco you might buy and sell weapons and ammo. Since you didn't already know that, I could tell you weren't talking to everyone. Smile Others will give you advice and hints about a lot of things. I know that gets tedious, so I'll give you one tiny spoiler to reduce that some. You can skip talking to the civilians outside of towns; they never say anything useful. That is, unless they have names. Always talk to people with names. Some of them may shoot you after they talk to you, but even then they'll generally tell you something very useful first.

Now, on to tactics. Since you obviously can capture some sectors, I'll assume you know the basics of combat. But in this game, don't try to conquer a town with less than five or six mercs until you've learned a bit more about stealthy, commando-style operations, or have two or three really good snipers with excellent weapons. You also asked whether to train militia right away, and the answer is a resounding yes. You won't be able to hold onto territory by yourself. Your "six merc" question leads me to another thought. When I first started this game, I once brought eight mercs into a battle, and two of them sat out the whole thing because I didn't know how to switch squads. In case that's true for you, I'll tell you that you can control more than six in a battle. Shift-space selects the next squad, with a whole new crop of faces you can give orders to. And I think I already answered whether you should hire more than a couple right away - yes, at least until you get more familiar with hiding and sneaking. You can accomplish a lot with hiding and sneaking and silent weapons. Not as much in 1.13 as you could in the original, but still, a lot. Even with good stealth tactics, though, it's much better to have backup when your sneak gets discovered. Smile

You'll do a lot better once you can get at a source of decent weapons and armor. Don't worry about asking if you need help. I'm actually having fun reliving the learning process! Thanks!
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #158958] Mon, 24 September 2007 13:08 Go to previous messageGo to next message
TrashMan

 
Messages:64
Registered:November 2005
Location: Croatia
This might also help you:

http://www.ja-galaxy-forum.com/board/ubbthreads.php/ubb/showflat/Number/156862/page/1#Post156862
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #158983] Mon, 24 September 2007 16:59 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rietori

 
Messages:10
Registered:September 2007
Thanks again for all the advice!
Well yesterday I found the weapons dealer in San Mona and sold him some of the things I found. Also I bought some guns from bobby ray and hired some nice mercs. I wanted to take Alma.
Sneaky approach seems to work only until I kill someone... from that point on, all the soldiers in the area come running towards me. I was on the edge of the map and suddenly some of them appeared out of nowhere, apparently from the other sector?
I was thinking that maybe I should pull back again after I killed one or two, because when they rush me it's bad. Going to try that today.
But I also thought it's a bit frustrating because what's all the terrain good for if I always get nailed in one spot with hordes of soldiers running at me and I have to shoot them down before they can do serious damage. That has been my "strategy" so far. *cough*
In the first few sectors I conquered I would usually place someone on a roof and let him/her draw attention while two others would get around to attack the enemy from the sides and from behind. But on most maps it won't work like that.

Hmm, the cheaper mercs? I don't know, they have bad aim and only pistols. =/ All the enemies beyond Drassen can take a lot more hits and it takes awfully long to kill them with a pistol.
I wasn't playing on novice though, the second difficulty level seemed more interesting (I usually play games on "normal" and that seemed like the default difficulty). But I set bobby ray to have a lot of weapons, although most of them are awfully expensive. I bought a cheap sniper rifle for Sydney because the range etc. seemed okay, but it turned out it's jammed or something after every other shot. Some gun.

Also why does the other thread suggest to take Chitzena first? I turned the counterattack off, but while I can take Drassen quite easily now, the other towns seem a lot harder to take.
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #158993] Mon, 24 September 2007 17:57 Go to previous messageGo to next message
TrashMan

 
Messages:64
Registered:November 2005
Location: Croatia
For the sneaky approach to work you need to have pistol/rifle supressors or silencers.

so they don't HEAR you shooting.


As fora few tips: Cheaper mercs aren't that bad (especially the smarter ones) Grizzly, Barry, Buns and MD spring to mind as great mercs to start with.

Why go towards Chitzena first?
1. San Mona is on the way and you can sell/buy gnz tehre and earn some $$$ by fighting and doing a few "quests"..not to mention robbing Kingpin
2. Chitzina has only 2 sectors so it's quicker to take over than Drassen...and there's no Queen counterattack
3. You get a "quest" there to escort someone to Drassen
4. There a SAM site right below (2 sectors below) Chitzena where you usually get some nifty gear
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159004] Mon, 24 September 2007 19:13 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rietori

 
Messages:10
Registered:September 2007
Yes I had a silencer but it seemed to have no effect. I imagine the soldiers I shoot call for help or something. And if they get a turn to fire at me, it will attract others anyways.
Also how do I know how far a gun can be heard? If I snipe someone off from a really long distance, maybe the rifle can't be heard even though it's not silenced just because it's so far away?

Hm and about Chitzena, like I said I felt that the enemies there were a lot stronger, and there seem to be no terrain that I could take advantage off. So I just lie there between some trees and the enemies do the same. But soldiers there still take several rounds to the head until they die, unlike in Drassen, so my people get hurt more and more eventually.

I played X-Com before, which is quite a similar game, and although I didn't do well there in the long run either, the combat seemed to be different. In JA2 I can't prevent this "shootout" situation from happening, where my people and the enemies just face each other, maybe with some sort of cover, and... well, shoot.
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159010] Mon, 24 September 2007 20:10 Go to previous messageGo to next message
SpaceViking

 
Messages:760
Registered:January 2004
Location: Rochester, Minnesota, USA
The enemies in Chitzena are no stronger than those in Drassen and usually weaker. In the first sector you attack there (the mine one) there are always a med kit and a repair kit, things that are hard to find sometimes early on in the game. The local people there are also less loyal to the queen and taking over just the mine sector will get you income immediately as soon as you talk tot he mine boss. You can run the guns you find over to sell to Tony and get a quick cash boost.

If you end up just blazing away at each other then whoever has more guys usually wins early on. Retreat and try again or send someone around to flank. Or if the bad guys are just using pistols send someone tough running straight at them and try to get him behind a tree. The bad guys will all blaze away at him and the rest of your squad can move in closer. Risky, but sometime you have to send someone in harms way.


Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159017] Mon, 24 September 2007 21:21 Go to previous messageGo to next message
cdunigan

 
Messages:135
Registered:September 2007
Location: Madison, Wisconsin, USA
Using stealth:

I never fire when hidden/stealthy unless I am reasonably sure to kill. If they get a chance to fire back, you're not planning the sneak attack right. Conceal yourself well and observe the situation for a bit, so you can plan the optimal moment to strike. Don't fire at all if you can see more than one during this observation. Withdraw and come at them again from a different angle, until you can be sure you're getting only one at a time. This is why the Night-Ops skill is so popular - you can see farther than normal at night, even without Night Vision Goggles. They can't shoot you if they can't see you. And as soon as the enemy spots my sneak, I abandon stealth entirely and run him away. But I run him directly into the line of fire of my other mercs. The enemy almost certainly will follow, so the rest of the team can take him out. Then it's time to send the sneak out again. Even if this is all he ever does, and never manages to score a single kill himself, he's very useful. Luring in the enemy one or two at a time is often a very successful tactic.

Also don't overlook knives, they can be devastating. Armor doesn't really affect knife efficiency, so it's a great way to bring down heavily armored enemies. Throwing knives will get a chance for an instant kill, provided the target is unaware of your presence. They are also completely silent, which a firearm never is. "Silencer" is a misnomer, which is why most of them are called "sound suppressors" now. An enemy close by (I'm guessing about two or three squares away) a "silenced" shot will still hear it, and most likely see the muzzle flash as well, especially at night. That does vary by weapon, though. Some weapons are just engineered to be quieter than others, and so will "silence" better, too. Some of the firearms experts on the forum will have to address the specifics of that, because I'm just not sure. As for hearing normal gunfire, I always assume the enemy can hear me shooting anywhere in the sector. That's probably not true, but it makes for a very safe approach when I know I'm going to be using stealth. Don't fire non-silenced weapons unless you want the enemy to know you're there.

Fists and hand-held weapons like a crowbar are also completely silent. It's entirely possible to take out an entire sector with a single, very stealthy merc, without either side ever firing a shot. It's damn hard, but it's possible.

"Silent" does not automatically mean "hidden." Remember that the enemy can see you, too. And "hidden" or even "camouflaged" most definitely does not mean "invisible." Unless it's dark and you have the vision advantage, make sure you're keeping substantial foliage or structure between you and the guy you're sneaking up on. For a couple of examples on "substantial," note that tall grass alone does nothing unless you're prone, and a single skinny tree trunk will only hide you if you are directly behind it. Try to get within about four squares. A burst shot from that distance has a very good chance of multiple hits, increasing the likelihood of a kill tremendously. The second and subsequent hits in a burst shot always do much more damage than you would one at a time, I think because you're hitting the same area of armor that the first shot already damaged. And if he spots you, you may be close enough at that range that you can run in with a knife and still finish him off silently. Aim for the head with the knife, the game actually assumes you're going for the neck, and damage is potentially much higher.

Remember that the rules of hiding apply to the enemy, too. Don't sneak into a region with a heavy concentration of trees, bushes, and high grass and expect to be able to spot and kill someone immediately. Whenever I forget that, it seems like there's always six enemies I didn't see yet, ready to perforate me after I get my measly single kill. Waiting and observing is even more important then.

I gotta go right now, but I'll write some a bit later on about tactical mistakes you seem to be making.
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159019] Mon, 24 September 2007 21:45 Go to previous messageGo to next message
TrashMan

 
Messages:64
Registered:November 2005
Location: Croatia
I usually take several Silent-kill mercs with me.

That'd be my IMP, Shadow, Scope, Grizzly and sometimes MD...give them all suitable weapons for the job (something quiet) and night vission goggles and kill as many as I can silently before all hell breaks loose Smile
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159048] Tue, 25 September 2007 01:12 Go to previous messageGo to next message
cdunigan

 
Messages:135
Registered:September 2007
Location: Madison, Wisconsin, USA
Tactics in a daytime firefight:
[I thought I should add a note that these are simple tactics for the start of the game only, when you're only facing small arms fire. Take, for instance, the "fire a shot to lure them in" tactic. If you announce your position in this way later in the game, when the enemy has access to long range heavy weapons like mortars, you'll just catapult your team into the afterlife with high explosives. Wink And in case it isn't obvious with all the talk of trees and grass, these tactics may not directly apply to urban settings.]

First I'll echo what SpaceViking said: if you find yourself sitting sitting still and blazing away like it's the OK Corral, you'd better have more guns than the other guy. If you don't, get out of Dodge. Wink There's no dishonor in a tactical withdrawal, especially when you're outgunned. Range and weaponry matter, too. You seem to like sniper rifles (so do I). But the advantage of a sniper rifle is accuracy at long range. If you've let them come close enough that their pistols become reasonably accurate, too, then you've lost your advantage. Remember, most pistols start to get effective around 10 or 12 squares. Pistols can throw a lot more lead down range per turn than your rifle can (unless it's an assault rifle with burst or auto capability), and the sheer number of bullets flying around will carry the day. Retreat, or find another position.

Just like in chess, position matters a lot. Generally, I hate feeling pinned down. If I'm sitting still in a firefight, I'd better be scoring way more hits than the enemy, or I'm gonna get up and find a better spot: better cover, better aiming angle, whatever I can locate in one move that will improve my situation. If a merc is getting hit and there don't seem to be better positions available, hightail it behind the other mercs until you can find a good position. I run when changing positions. It seems to me that I'm harder to hit that way, although I've never stopped to do the analysis to prove that. Also, don't have all your mercs fire from the same general location. Move a couple around to the side, at least a little, so you can set up a crossfire. It's almost impossible to maintain cover behind a tree in a crossfire. But the enemy will do it too, so look out.

Do you know about suppressive fire? Have you ever noticed that your mercs' APs go down even when the enemy misses, if the bullet(s) came close enough? Use that to your advantage. If a particular enemy soldier seems especially dangerous, get someone who isn't your best marksman to repeatedly do a full auto or a shotgun buckshot attack on him. You're not necessarily worried about hitting him here, you're just trying to reduce his effectiveness. Then your better marksmen can actually try to hit him. If you can do enough of that, you'll have gained a firepower advantage in that you'll be able to get off more shots per turn than the enemy. Again, the enemy will use this tactic too, so make sure you're under good cover, which will reduce the effectiveness of suppressive fire.

rietori
Hm and about Chitzena, like I said I felt that the enemies there were a lot stronger, and there seem to be no terrain that I could take advantage off. So I just lie there between some trees and the enemies do the same.


Just in case you really meant that literally, you do know you should lay behind the trees, not between them, right? Smile If you find that you can't take advantage of terrain, then you're probably letting the enemy choose the battle ground. Don't. I'll often choose my entry point close to a place with good cover, especially where I can put one or two mercs to one side for a crossfire, then send a stealthy merc out to scout and hunker everyone else down. Don't go out looking for them, make them come to you. If the scout determines that the enemy is actually located such that my chosen defensive position is a bad one, I move at once. Otherwise, once I'm satisfied with the scout's position, i.e., close to the enemy but unseen, and not between the team and the enemy, the others fire a shot or two at a tree or building, just to get the enemy's attention. Most of the time they'll come right to me, and now I've chosen the battle ground. If I chose it really well, their opportunities for cover and concealment will be less than mine. You'll even get more interrupts that way, because they've had to move and you haven't. Then my sneak can start taking out their rear guard and/or reserve silently and unnoticed because everyone is paying attention to the firefight. It's a little dangerous because my sneak is out there in alone in enemy territory, so TrashMan's idea of multiple sneaks is a good one. If you do go with just one, try not to let him get too far ahead of the team unless you're confident he's able to handle it.

As you can see, these kinds of tactics require more "boots on the ground" to succeed than you're currently talking about using, and more boots means less money per boot. Don't worry so much about a less than stellar marksmanship. If the merc also has a good dexterity, he'll shoot better than his marksmanship would suggest, and if his wisdom is high, you'll be surprised how quickly that marksmanship will become stellar. If you're determined to use fewer but better mercs, then you'll have get very good at choosing position or using stealth, and preferably both. And you'll have to accept the inevitability of retreat when you haven't, or couldn't, choose good position, or get discovered too soon when using stealth. The general rules of war are that a smaller but better force must rely on its superior mobility to succeed, even if it has stronger weaponry. If you aren't moving around, outmaneuvering them, the enemy's superior numbers will just overwhelm you every time, as you're finding out. Even if I'm a crack shot and I've got a futuristic ray gun, fifty guys with clubs will take me down if I stay still long enough to let them do it. They'll just lose a lot of guys doing it.

[Updated on: Tue, 25 September 2007 04:16] by Moderator

Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159063] Tue, 25 September 2007 03:20 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rietori

 
Messages:10
Registered:September 2007
The thing about suppressive fire is interesting. I wouldn't have thought such a thing would work. But it shows the programmers put a lot of thought into game mechanics. =)
However there's always the issue of common sense versus game mechanics in a game like this one...
Like with the trees. Of course I'd say hide behind a tree, but then in a game I think the tree would block my merc's field of view and I'd have to step out from behind it for shooting.
It's the same with corners: I can hide behind the corner of a building, but if I want to fire at the enemy I have to actually step around the corner and expose myself. There's no way of leaning and firing around the corner while just exposing a little.
I'm not sure how the game works in this regard.

It's also hard to figure out how stealth works I think. I can set my mercs to move in "stealth" but will that only reduce the sound they make? I was trying to sneak up on an enemy while I was lying down and approaching with stealth mode on, but then suddenly he turned around and shot at me. =(
If it only decreases the sound, I could approach them in walking mode as well. Crawling uses up AP so fast, and it's annoying when I crawl up all the way to an enemy and then he'll still notice me. That stealth thing is really hard to figure out.
When I was in San Mona and trying to see Tony, the store guy wouldn't let me in there, so I tried walking next to him, turning sneak on and throwing a knife at him, but it didn't work. All the town turned aggressive against me even when I beat him down without firing a shot. Hmmm, but then this might just be something the game does so you don't go around killing people.
Is there any good way to learn about how stealth and sneaking really works?

Also I tried to use a grenade, but somehow my merc could only throw it like 3 or 4 squares away. That's strange because to me it doesn't look like a safe distance. Like some shrapnels might hit the merc. But when she did it, it even came like 3 squares off and didn't hurt anyone. Isn't that odd? I mean for what's supposed to be a trained mercenary...
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159068] Tue, 25 September 2007 03:48 Go to previous messageGo to next message
madned
Messages:2
Registered:March 2004
something to remember when using suppressors and throwing knives.

if you miss, bullets and knives banging off surfaces like walls and trees still make noise, which generally seems to alert enemies in the vicinity of your presence.

the AIs generally seem to chase to your last heard position. if you make additional noise or they can see you from that point they will move to your next last known position.

trees don't block your LOS much. there's a very thin cone where they obstruct sight and it's hard to judge correctly.

no leaning. but that works to your advantage.
step out when they haven't seen you and shoot.
then wait for any reinforcements.

it's a good idea to keep a stealthed observer watching the corner though. if they stop at the corner they can step around before you can interrupt on the next turn. at which point you either have to run. or use a grenade. grenades generally have low effects beyond 2 sq for minis and 3 for regulars. you have to land it on or right next to for good effect.

ranges in JA2 are a little wonky. they seem to convert to about 10m/sq.

hanz needs to get rid of a pest before he lets you see tony. i think there's a video lying around somewhere in town that'll fix the problem.

hostility seems to work on a faction system.
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159083] Tue, 25 September 2007 05:30 Go to previous messageGo to next message
cdunigan

 
Messages:135
Registered:September 2007
Location: Madison, Wisconsin, USA
rietori
The thing about suppressive fire is interesting. I wouldn't have thought such a thing would work. But it shows the programmers put a lot of thought into game mechanics. =)

Like I said, much of the enjoyment comes from learning the depth of the game. There's more cool stuff like that to come....

rietori
However there's always the issue of common sense versus game mechanics in a game like this one... Like with the trees. Of course I'd say hide behind a tree, but then in a game I think the tree would block my merc's field of view and I'd have to step out from behind it for shooting.

I actually had to learn the hard way that you can see around trees. For a while, I thought I couldn't and would lay prone next to them and get shot to hell! I think the game mechanics assume you can get close to the edge of the trunk and peer around. Just know that when game visuals and common sense contradict each other, you should try the common sense approach, too, to find out if it's another case like this one.

rietori
It's the same with corners: I can hide behind the corner of a building, but if I want to fire at the enemy I have to actually step around the corner and expose myself. There's no way of leaning and firing around the corner while just exposing a little.
I'm not sure how the game works in this regard.

Actually, you can fire from the corner. There's a chance, especially with a low marksmanship, that you'll just hit the wall. It depends on exactly where the target is, and (again, this is subjective, I've done no analysis) it seems to work better when you're prone. More importantly, you can be hit when you're at the corner. If you want to be fully protected, you have to back up one square. In general, you can probably assume that if you can see the target, you at least have a chance of hitting it, and it has a chance of hitting you. Your merc will tell you if it's a hopeless shot.

rietori
It's also hard to figure out how stealth works I think. I can set my mercs to move in "stealth" but will that only reduce the sound they make?

Yes, it only affects sound.

rietori

I was trying to sneak up on an enemy while I was lying down and approaching with stealth mode on, but then suddenly he turned around and shot at me. =(
If it only decreases the sound, I could approach them in walking mode as well. Crawling uses up AP so fast, and it's annoying when I crawl up all the way to an enemy and then he'll still notice me. That stealth thing is really hard to figure out.

You have to make sure you (the player, not the merc) are listening, too. Turn the music down or off when using stealth. You'll be able to hear a slight sound if your merc made a noise while trying to be silent, and you can assume that the enemy heard it, too. [Edit: This is the safe attitude, but it's not strictly true, so I thought I'd clarify. There is a chance that your merc will fail to move silently, and you'll hear when he fails. If he makes a noise, then there's a chance that an enemy is close enough to hear it (prob no more than five squares away). If there is one, then there's a chance that he'll hear the noise. So you can just freeze when the merc makes a noise, and wait to see if anyone reacts. I prefer the safer route of assuming that he was heard, and withdrawing or changing my approach.] Yes, you can walk stealthily, but you'll be much easier to spot visually if you do. Like real life, everything's a trade-off.

rietori

When I was in San Mona and trying to see Tony, the store guy wouldn't let me in there, so I tried walking next to him, turning sneak on and throwing a knife at him, but it didn't work. All the town turned aggressive against me even when I beat him down without firing a shot. Hmmm, but then this might just be something the game does so you don't go around killing people.

Yah, you don't wanna go around shooting or even punching the civilians. It makes them mad. Wink I once shot the little boy at the start of the game by accident, and the loyalty of all towns went immediately to zero. I reloaded, but I'm assuming that they'd even have been hostile once I got in. I know the rebels were. There are a few you can off with no consequences, but you'll figure them out. The game will generally give you clues about when it's appropriate to hurt civilians, but assume you normally shouldn't. I assume you eventually got in to see Tony, then?

rietori

Is there any good way to learn about how stealth and sneaking really works?

Just what you're doing, experimenting and asking questions. And you really can apply some common sense. Let's see, knowing that stealth only affects sound, knowing that you'll be able to hear stealth mistakes your mercs make, knowing that "silencers" don't completely silence, hmm, what else can I tell you? Oh, camouflage. Camouflage will reduce the enemies ability to see you at a distance, but again, you can use common sense. If you're burst firing their position, all the camo in the world won't keep them from seeing you. If you're three squares away in an open field in broad daylight, they can see you. And if the enemy uses camo, and they do, when they "disappear" you can still fire at their last known position and take a chance that they haven't moved, and you might be able to hit them. And Night Ops. Night Ops improves your night vision, like I said before, but it also improves your APs at night, when the enemy's APs tend to go down. And it increases your chances of getting an interrupt at night. And the Stealthy skill - it increases your chances of staying silent. I've read both that it's a 15% increase and a 25% increase, which doubles if you're a Stealthy expert. I think 25% is right. Success at Stealth also increases with the merc's level. If you wanna really see how good Stealth can be, hire Shadow for a while. Smile Oh, and rocks. Rocks are cool. If you really need to close that last few squares to get close enough for a good chance at a kill, and there's no concealment left between you and him, but the damn guy just won't turn directly away from you so you can sneak up to him, throw a rock in the direction you want him to look. He'll turn towards the sound of the rock, and often run forward to where it landed. He'll often, but not always, stay facing that direction for a while, too. And because it was just a rock, when he sees it he really won't notice anything out of place, and get alerted. Not being alerted is very important for knife attacks, both throwing and held. It means you get a chance for an instant kill. One more thing - the enemy really does sometimes randomly turn around at just the wrong moment. But generally they walk around, and if you watch them, you'll see that each one has a general pattern of movement he'll follow. You can use that. If he generally walks a few steps right, a few steps left, then crouches and looks right for a while, you can probably start crawling left when he moves left. By the time you get close enough, assuming you've been silent, he'll have turned around to do his "crouch and face right" thing, and you've got him.

rietori

Also I tried to use a grenade, but somehow my merc could only throw it like 3 or 4 squares away. That's strange because to me it doesn't look like a safe distance. Like some shrapnels might hit the merc. But when she did it, it even came like 3 squares off and didn't hurt anyone. Isn't that odd? I mean for what's supposed to be a trained mercenary...

I'm guessing that you set Strength a little low? Strength not only affects how much stuff a merc can carry, but also how far they can throw things. You can increase it by punching, running, and carrying more than 100% of your weight allowance. You probably shouldn't try to throw grenades unless Strength is above about 60, because you're right, you can't throw it a safe distance away. Dexterity and the Throwing skill improve accuracy, not distance.

[Updated on: Tue, 25 September 2007 17:31] by Moderator

Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159147] Tue, 25 September 2007 17:33 Go to previous messageGo to next message
cdunigan

 
Messages:135
Registered:September 2007
Location: Madison, Wisconsin, USA
I made an edit to the daytime tactics post, and to my last post, in case you have read them already and want to review the changes I made.
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159152] Tue, 25 September 2007 18:00 Go to previous messageGo to next message
cdunigan

 
Messages:135
Registered:September 2007
Location: Madison, Wisconsin, USA
madned
something to remember when using suppressors and throwing knives.

if you miss, bullets and knives banging off surfaces like walls and trees still make noise, which generally seems to alert enemies in the vicinity of your presence.

the AIs generally seem to chase to your last heard position. if you make additional noise or they can see you from that point they will move to your next last known position.

trees don't block your LOS much. there's a very thin cone where they obstruct sight and it's hard to judge correctly.

no leaning. but that works to your advantage.
step out when they haven't seen you and shoot.
then wait for any reinforcements.

it's a good idea to keep a stealthed observer watching the corner though. if they stop at the corner they can step around before you can interrupt on the next turn. at which point you either have to run. or use a grenade. grenades generally have low effects beyond 2 sq for minis and 3 for regulars. you have to land it on or right next to for good effect.

ranges in JA2 are a little wonky. they seem to convert to about 10m/sq.

hanz needs to get rid of a pest before he lets you see tony. i think there's a video lying around somewhere in town that'll fix the problem.

hostility seems to work on a faction system.


Very good points. I thought I'd expand a couple of them.

I love putting a high Agility merc in a place close to the enemies where he can't be hit; directly behind that little guard post at the airport is a good example. I put him on Run, then pop out one square, high aim or burst shot someone, then pop back into hiding. This doesn't work so well later in the game, though, when the soldiers are higher level and likely to get interrupts and whack him before he can pull the trigger. And at higher difficulty levels, it won't even work at the airport, because the soldiers will be better, and because the distance from that spot to where the enemy sits is pretty short.

There are factions in the game, like madned says, and if you hit one person from the faction, the whole faction will go hostile, everywhere on the map. There are the rebels and the army, whom you've already met and are obvious. Then there are the town civilians, from whom your militia are drawn. There are also rural civilians, who seem to have a less direct connection with the town civilians, but I can't prove that, it's just my subjective sense. Both will be affected to some extent by the reactions of the other, and the reactions of the rebels - the rebels don't like you killing the populace, and vice versa. It does seem to me that if a rural civilian is far enough away from anything else, the town civilian reaction to killing him is muted. You can generally assume that a named character will be part of the civilian faction, except when it's obvious that he's rebel or army, or you have some clue from talking to the civilians that they consider him an outsider. Then there are Kingpin's men, who have no direct connection to any other faction. Tony and Hans seem to be a special case, because if you hit them, the Kingpin faction will go hostile, but not vice versa. There's one more smaller faction I'll let you discover on your own. Smile But you can use common sense again. The game will tell you quite clearly what the civilian reaction will be if you hit them, and you should be able to tell by yourself what their reactions will be if you hit one of their own. Lastly, there are some lone characters, whose interaction with the other factions is a bit more complex. Once again, common sense will prevail. If the lone character is someone harmless, the good guys probably won't like you wasting him with no reason (the bad guys already hate you anyway, so you can't tell what their reaction is). But if he gives you a reason, and the game pretty clearly says that no one likes him anyway, you can probably kill him without hurting anything, and in some cases you clearly should.

[Updated on: Tue, 25 September 2007 19:33] by Moderator

Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159153] Tue, 25 September 2007 18:11 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rietori

 
Messages:10
Registered:September 2007
Maybe my strength was too low for throwing, I'm not sure. But then I wouldn't have been able to throw a knife very well either..
When I created the imp, there were three options which I considered. Night ops, stealthy and I think camouflage or something. But as I could only take 2 of them, I decided to take stealth and camouflage and leave night ops out. I thought that night ops would just affect visual range and that it could be replaced by wearing night vision goggles. But then it looks like stealthy and night ops would have been a better idea? A lot of mercs seem to be good at night ops, so maybe I could take those and make attacks preferably at night.
But then, maybe the enemy has night ops soldiers too? Or people with night vision goggles so they can see me well, and I won't have those at the beginning.

Hmm and for guns, there's the option of applying either a silencer or a muzzle flash reducer, but not both. But I assume the silencer is a better choice? On the other hand, a muzzle flash at night SHOULD be visible at quite a long range. However the maximum range of a view doesn't seem to be very high.
Madned said 10 meters per square, which sounds really odd if you just look at the game, because someone who's prone will have their head in one square and feet in another, so... but on the other hand, the rifles at the weapon shop have ranges like 800m, 1000m ... that's nearly a km. However the maps in the game seem to be maybe 500x500m large
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159155] Tue, 25 September 2007 18:21 Go to previous messageGo to next message
SpaceViking

 
Messages:760
Registered:January 2004
Location: Rochester, Minnesota, USA
The scale is one tile is 10m. It is an abstraction to make map sizes reasonable given the target 1995 machines of the original game.

A silencer does what a flash suppressor does plus makes the gun quieter (but not silent).

The camo perk isn't that great in the current code (it used to RULE, though). The camo you get is for forest and doesn't work as well (if at all, not sure) in urban, desert, and other areas. It is easy to get camo equipment by midgame plus you'll have piles of camo kits that work as well as (or better than) the perk so you are better off taking things that equipment can't provide.

Stealth+Night Ops is a great combination. You can easily get a team of 4 or 5 by midgame who all have Night Ops and most with Stealth, too. Let the stealh people lead with the other night ops people covering their flanks.


Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159160] Tue, 25 September 2007 19:20 Go to previous messageGo to next message
cdunigan

 
Messages:135
Registered:September 2007
Location: Madison, Wisconsin, USA
It used to be that everyone automatically wanted a Stealthy/Night-Ops IMP merc. That's seems less true in 1.13, and I think it's because the designers saw the overwhelming influence of that combination, and deliberately balanced it a little better.

I neglected to mention that type of camo matters. I usually write too much, so I'm always trying to leave things out so I reduce the amount. There's a table of which type is effective where, here: http://ja2v113.pbwiki.com/Features . Basically, if you're using standard woodland camo, which is all the Camouflaged skill does, it's completely useless on roads and inside buildings. This is a case where the game visuals are right in line with the mechanics. A woodland camouflaged merc stands out like a sore thumb on a paved road in the visuals, and he does in the mechanics, too.

Overall, my impression so far of 1.13 is that it's no longer enough to rely on a single set of skills and a single style of combat, like we used to with Stealthy/Night Ops. You're definitely going to need some of those, but you're also going to need Auto Weapons guys and Heavy Weapons guys for those times when direct assault is the only option, and to back the Night Operatives up when the enemy turns out to have Night Vision Goggles all over the place. In case rietori doesn't know yet, Auto Weapons increases the merc's ability to control muzzle drift during burst fire, which translates to fewer wild shots and more hits, and Heavy Weapons increases the chance to hit with mortars, grenade launchers, and a wild, fictional weapon you'll learn about as time goes on. You'll also want at least one or two Stealthy or high Agility mercs with Throwing and/or Knifing. Picture, for instance, the value of Scully or Sidney in urban camo on one of those town maps with roads and buildings everywhere. Small spoilers here, but with the Stealth Suit, the Stealthy skill is less important. And things like camouflaged armor, greater accessibility to multiple camo types, and the Ghillie suit, make the Camouflage skill completely obsolete. I'm becoming very tempted to violate one of my personal rules and create multiple IMPs, so I can get the balance of skills I'm talking about. I'm especially interested in creating both an Auto Weapons and a Night Ops expert. For rietori, Night Ops gives you about a 1.5 square increase in vision at night, so an expert would double that to three squares. Couple that with NVGs (you get both the goggle bonus and the Night Ops bonus), good camo, and a silenced sniper rifle (harder to pinpoint both sound and muzzle flash), and it seems to me you could take out a whole sector with just that merc and a well camouflaged and Stealthy forward observer to find the targets. Put an Auto Weapons expert near the Night Ops expert for those times when you get rushed by multiple enemies, but far enough away that a grenade can't hit them both, and you've got one hell of a team in just three people.

But I'm rambling again, so I'll stop now. Wink

[Updated on: Tue, 25 September 2007 19:37] by Moderator

Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159171] Tue, 25 September 2007 20:30 Go to previous messageGo to next message
foij

 
Messages:229
Registered:February 2007
Location: in a van, down by the riv...
rietori
I thought that night ops would just affect visual range and that it could be replaced by wearing night vision goggles.


Night ops provides a bonus, even when you're wearing NVGs. It's a handy skill to have. Camo ability provides a constant wood camo bonus, but be aware that wood camo is useless in desert and urban environments, and you cannot use a desert or urban camo kit on a merc with the camo ability.

rietori
Hmm and for guns, there's the option of applying either a silencer or a muzzle flash reducer, but not both. But I assume the silencer is a better choice? On the other hand, a muzzle flash at night SHOULD be visible at quite a long range. However the maximum range of a view doesn't seem to be very high.


In general, a silencer is a better choice, but keep in mind some guns, especially sniper rifles will accept a flash suppressor, but not a silencer.
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159173] Tue, 25 September 2007 21:00 Go to previous messageGo to next message
TrashMan

 
Messages:64
Registered:November 2005
Location: Croatia
Shouldn't a Cammo skill apply cammo appropriate to the sorrounding? So you're allways at 100% wood/urban/desert.

The cammo skill AMT is just friggin stupid and broken!
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159178] Tue, 25 September 2007 21:15 Go to previous messageGo to next message
rietori

 
Messages:10
Registered:September 2007
Oh, so when I pick only one trait, my merc will be an expert there? As opposed to picking two. But what if I pick none?
And about the camouflage only working in the woods... I think it's annoying the game doesn't tell anything about things like that at the point where you get to pick traits. Just like with that silent running and some other things. How do you know all those things?
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159180] Tue, 25 September 2007 21:21 Go to previous messageGo to next message
SpaceViking

 
Messages:760
Registered:January 2004
Location: Rochester, Minnesota, USA
rietori
Oh, so when I pick only one trait, my merc will be an expert there? As opposed to picking two.


Yes. A couple of the perks only really have one level, though.

Quote:
But what if I pick none?


You don't get any. I think in the very original code that would get you some bonus points to sepnd on STR and such but I don't know if that is in the current code.

Quote:
And about the camouflage only working in the woods... I think it's annoying the game doesn't tell anything about things like that at the point where you get to pick traits. Just like with that silent running and some other things. How do you know all those things?


The game has never said what this stuff did. Heck, in the original you answered a bunch of weird questions and it picked this stuff for you.

Originally there was only one sort of camo that worked everywhere. Purists hated that so someone split camo up into three more reasonable things. At that point they decided to make the camo perk the same as woodland camo. Whoever did that would have to answer as to why.


Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159188] Tue, 25 September 2007 22:22 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Muerte

 
Messages:70
Registered:September 2007
Location: West USA
One more tidbit that I don't think has been mentioned:

Press the key to "Display Cover." You'll see a graphic overlay (which can be moved with your mouse) where green represents good cover, orange represents fair cover, and red represents poor cover. This overlay is calculated based on the current known enemies, the direction they're facing, whether they can "see" a given square, and so forth. It's a really handy feature to see if that rock or tree is really giving you the kind of protection you think it is.

Press the key to "Display Line-of-sight" for the current selected merc. Green squares are seen, orange squares are obscured, and red squares are hidden from the merc.

These are two very handy features that the coders have brought into v1.13 that I usually forget to use, but shouldn't.
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159192] Wed, 26 September 2007 00:28 Go to previous messageGo to next message
foij

 
Messages:229
Registered:February 2007
Location: in a van, down by the riv...
rietori
How do you know all those things?


Magic! Smile

Really though, its paying attention on the threads on this forum, especially on posts from the coders. You have to be careful, because there is a lot of misinformation out there as well! I've been playing 1.13 for awhile, and I still learn new things. If you're still confused, ask questions here, although you might not like the answers sometimes.

One major piece of advice, learn the xml editor that comes with the game. When you don't like something about items, equipment, weapons, etc., go and change it! Also, find a stable exe and stay with it for awhile (the exe's on the download page are not necessarily the most stable either). The coders release new versions continuously with new features, but with each bug fixed, two new ones pop up.
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159194] Wed, 26 September 2007 00:36 Go to previous messageGo to next message
TrashMan

 
Messages:64
Registered:November 2005
Location: Croatia
SpaceViking

Originally there was only one sort of camo that worked everywhere. Purists hated that so someone split camo up into three more reasonable things. At that point they decided to make the camo perk the same as woodland camo. Whoever did that would have to answer as to why.


I was wondering why my main man Shadow was suddenly so innefective when fighting in the desert/town.

Whoeever did this and butchered this skill will have to fix this or he'll be shot, hung and ran over by a buick!
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159197] Wed, 26 September 2007 00:48 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Muerte

 
Messages:70
Registered:September 2007
Location: West USA
TrashMan
I was wondering why my main man Shadow was suddenly so innefective when fighting in the desert/town.

Whoeever did this and butchered this skill will have to fix this or he'll be shot, hung and ran over by a buick!


I sense a bit of passion about this topic Smile I have to agree with the TrashMan that the Camouflage trait has been totally nerfed, and I'm not happy about it either. Will some great and wise coder take the challenge to correct this injustice?
Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159210] Wed, 26 September 2007 01:48 Go to previous messageGo to next message
cdunigan

 
Messages:135
Registered:September 2007
Location: Madison, Wisconsin, USA
I say fix it just for Shadow, that is 100% everywhere. Maybe he could even change colors like a chameleon!

For IMPs, I say remove it altogether, and give us a new skill/trait. Some good ones I've seen mentioned on the forums:

Scout - can see farther, small bonus to stealth, and better at finding out how many men the enemy has close by (fewer of those scary red question marks).

Sniper - reduced AP cost for high level aiming, small bonus to hit when prone

Technologist - options to create new stuff based on skills, such as high MEC means you can join gun parts that normally don't go together, high EXP means you can use ordinary household things to make a bomb

Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159213] Wed, 26 September 2007 02:03 Go to previous messageGo to next message
SpaceViking

 
Messages:760
Registered:January 2004
Location: Rochester, Minnesota, USA
Go over tot he 1.13 requests forum and make a "formal" request there for camo to work everywhere. That will start a debate and the main 1.13 people can get involved.


Re: 30-40 soldiers assaulting right at the start?[message #159293] Wed, 26 September 2007 17:07 Go to previous message
CrUsHeR

 
Messages:26
Registered:August 2007
Location: Munich, Germany
just remove the "camouflage" skill from the game, give shadow a ghillie suit as starting gear and it will be fine.



anyways, if you play with the Drassen counterattack enabled, it's better to go first to San Mona, then Chitzena and get some gear & money there first. you'll find some chemical break lights in San Mona which will be your key into clearing Chitzena during night. if your IMP has night ops + stealth, and you hire Spider + Igor + Bull + Barry you have enough muscle to win the San Mona prize fights, break all doors open that Barry can't pick, and you have 3 mercs that can stealth around at night.
So, after you hold & secure Chitzena and the nearby SAM site you will have plenty of sniper/assault rifles to choose from, and with that you can either try to win the Drassen counterattack honestly or you can simply hide in the Bar building in the northeast corner of the Mine Sector. That way it's a pretty lame fight but at least you will safely make it just using default starting gear and starting money.
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