XCOM EW Long War Settings, Equipment & Tactics.

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XCOM EW Long War Settings, Equipment & Tactics.

Postby Terminal Boy » Tue Sep 09, 2014 10:54 am

Not wishing to clutter up either of the excellent LW playthroughs with my gibberings, I thought I'd start this thread...

I'm looking to start an LW campaign on Classic Impossible and would be interested to people's thoughts on the following:

- Which version of LW?

- Second Wave options

- HE Vs. AP grenades

- Assault Carbine Vs. Shotgun Vs. SMG for Assaulter and Scout types

- Does the extra range and damage of the Battle Rifle make it a good starting weapon for Infantry characters or does the Aim penalty hurt too much?
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Re: XCOM EW Long War Settings, Equipment & Tactics.

Postby Ferrard Carson » Tue Sep 09, 2014 12:37 pm

Keeping in mind that I'm still in the opening stages of my own game, here's my recommendations (as always, I have my own playstyle that may or may not mesh well with yours):

  • Difficulty: You didn't ask about this, but if you haven't played Long War before, I'd really recommend following the mod creator's recommendation and sticking with "Normal" - it really is that crazy a jump in difficulty and change in mechanics.
  • Long War Version: I presume you mean whether to use "Not-So-Long-War" or not - I'd leave that up to personal preference. I'm sticking with normal myself.
  • Second Wave Options: Given the effort that needs to go into training all your rookies and the way that you have so little room for error and much scarcer resources, I highly recommend "Strict Screening" so that you know exactly what to expect from your rookies and how they'll behave as you rank them up.
  • HE vs. AP grenades: I take AP on everyone except for Engineers and even then I sometimes forget to swap out the Engie loadout. Primarily I want the extra damage from AP grenades, especially since people without Sapper can't reliably destroy cover with HE grenades.
  • Assault Carbine vs. Shotgun vs. SMG: Assaults should get shotguns, hands down. They are the class that can exploit them the most with their Run 'n Gun mobility. Scouts I tend to bring an Assault Carbine on - the SMG mobility boost is awesome, but in the early game, having 1/6th of your force be unable to deal reliable damage is terribad to me. When I can get sprinter on one of my scouts (fuck yes, Sprinter is the shiznit!) I'll probably hand him or her a shotgun. Keep in mind that Scouts can equip Marksman Rifles and become a poor-man's sniper with tons of mobility - I just think "Keep them at long range, but still in visual" is too finicky compared to "Shove it in their face and pull the trigger."
  • Battle Rifle: I'd recommend waiting until Corporal to hand your infantry a battle-rifle. At that point, their natural aim progression will have made up for the -15 if you've also picked "Covering Fire" and "Opportunist", even more if you stick a scope on them (which you totally should). Beyond that, I'd again call it a matter of personal choice. I haven't made it to enemies with ridiculous HP pools yet, so I'm currently leaning towards more accurate shots, but I'll make the Infantry switch to battle rifles eventually.

Anyways - those be my thoughts!

:clint: ~ Ferrard
"Take a boat in the air you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turnin' of the worlds. Love keeps her in the air when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurtin' before she keels... makes her home."
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Re: XCOM EW Long War Settings, Equipment & Tactics.

Postby Terminal Boy » Tue Sep 09, 2014 1:09 pm

Thanks for your insight.

I meant which version of the LW Mod should I run? Beta 13 is the latest and greatest I believe.

On your recommendations, I'll start on Normal difficulty in Ironman mode so I don't fanny about with re-loading games every time I do something stupid and try harder not to do anything stupid.

I'm guessing by the way you and other LW Tubers stack troops on neighbouring tiles, alien grenades aren't seen until Mutons show up. I did gasp seeing you stack 3 troopers in front of the UFO door on Secret Blade... :o
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Re: XCOM EW Long War Settings, Equipment & Tactics.

Postby Ferrard Carson » Tue Sep 09, 2014 1:32 pm

Terminal Boy wrote:I meant which version of the LW Mod should I run? Beta 13 is the latest and greatest I believe.

No reason not to use Beta 13 - 's what I'm running.

Terminal Boy wrote:On your recommendations, I'll start on Normal difficulty in Ironman mode so I don't fanny about with re-loading games every time I do something stupid and try harder not to do anything stupid.

Normally I'd recommend non-Ironman to live-and-learn when you find out something the hard way (e.g. finding out the hard way that some Chryssalids have Lightning Reflexes), but LW does allow you to recover from squad wipes, so it's probably okay.

Terminal Boy wrote:I'm guessing by the way you and other LW Tubers stack troops on neighbouring tiles, alien grenades aren't seen until Mutons show up. I did gasp seeing you stack 3 troopers in front of the UFO door on Secret Blade... :o

Well, stacking up all six dudes on the door of the UFO would be a bad idea anyways if there were any active enemies, whether they had alieum granata or not. As it was, however, there were no active aliens on the map, and aliens can't throw a grenade on the turn they activate (or spit acid, which is the real AOE danger in the early game), so even late in the game, it's perfectly safe to cram everyone up against the force field and then shove one of the rookies through :dance:

Just, don't do it when there are active enemies on the board!

~ Ferrard
"Take a boat in the air you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turnin' of the worlds. Love keeps her in the air when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurtin' before she keels... makes her home."
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Re: XCOM EW Long War Settings, Equipment & Tactics.

Postby Terminal Boy » Tue Sep 09, 2014 5:22 pm

Thanks again for the advice.

Hey, wait a minute!

Did you just post "that some Chryssalids have Lightning Reflexes"??

Chryssalids that can dodge incoming fire? In the early game when my troops have basic rifles and kevlar armour? Yikes...
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Re: XCOM EW Long War Settings, Equipment & Tactics.

Postby Terminal Boy » Wed Sep 10, 2014 11:10 pm

I've checked my settings twice and can't see where I enabled Ludicrous Difficulty, but I clearly have...

Everything started out gently enough. Chose North America for the Air & Space bonus and for my earnest belief that if I can't return to a cold Sam Adams, a bowl of chilli cheese fries and at least two Dallas Cowboys cheerleaders after a day shooting aliens in the face; we might as well let them win.

6 Specialists after the intro mission and another 6 rookies ranked up after successfully ending an abduction mission. Boffins are doing science stuff and the Engineers are busy knocking out a couple of satellites.

Then Control picks up something on the radar, a very big something. The first interceptor doesn't even get one hit before having to bug out with heavy damage and a very soiled g-suit. The second gets in 3 good hits, but doesn't scratch the alien craft's paintwork. As the second interceptor flees, its gun camera captures footage of what appears to be two sectiods mooning the interceptor through the rear door of the alien vessel.

Not wishing to risk another interceptor, I returned to my bunk and had a little nap before filling in the insurance claim forms for the two damaged interceptors. I didn't get much rest as Bradford kicked the door open only minutes later to tell me the bloody thing had landed closed to the Canadian border.

Obviously, The Council are going to tear me a new one if I don't send a team, but how am I supposed to pick a squad of specialists (my one Rocketeer is wounded) to take on a fully crewed large UFO?
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Re: XCOM EW Long War Settings, Equipment & Tactics.

Postby Ferrard Carson » Thu Sep 11, 2014 2:39 am

Ah yes, the infamous "March Supply Barge." So how do you defeat it? Ya don't :fry:

There are some missions on Long War that you are simply not intended to win, and if you do, it's like winning the lottery. So your choices are really:

    1) Take your A-team and ace a March Supply Barge that probably has packs of roving thin mints, three flights of drones, a gaggle of floaters and the odd mutton mixed in. And Sectoids swarming throughout the ship like ants.
    2) Take your A-team and get absolutely reamed by packs of roving thin mints, three flights of drones, a gaggle of floaters and the odd mutton mixed in, with Sectoids swarming throughout the ship like ants.
    3) Take people you want to get kills with, get them kills, then retreat when you are spent, letting them gather all the shit they want so they can knock on your door with a Sectopod in May.
    4) Ignore the landing and let them gather all the shit they want so they can knock on your door with a Sectopod in May.

Enjoy! :dance:

More seriously. If the alieums are allowed to complete their mission, then they get the full supply-gathering and / or research-boost from said mission. If you kill the alieums, then obviously they don't get any bonuses, and have only thrown so much supplies into your grabby hands. If you kill some of the alieums but retreat... they get their full supply-gathering and / or research-boost from said mission. Your Specialist Squad may not be able to complete this mission - most certainly they won't do it in one piece, but if you manage to eek out a win, you get so many alloys and elerium and stasis pods and all sorts of crazy shit so that you can float pretty well on cash or equipment for a month or two.

The choice is yours, Commander.

~ Ferrard
"Take a boat in the air you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turnin' of the worlds. Love keeps her in the air when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurtin' before she keels... makes her home."
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Re: XCOM EW Long War Settings, Equipment & Tactics.

Postby Terminal Boy » Thu Sep 25, 2014 10:42 am

After Save Scumming my way to clearing the Supply Barge, I realised that was only cheating myself and have restarted using the following 2nd Wave features:

- Strict Screening
- Hidden Potential
- Red Fog
- Absolutely Critical
- Cinematic Mode
- Aiming Angle

I have already lost one brave Specialist by not remembering to Hunker him in half cover while in sight of an enemy.

The good news is that I'm now thinking before moving or shooting...
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