Author Topic: Catching the Fallen Spire  (Read 1611 times)

Offline Diazo

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Catching the Fallen Spire
« on: October 03, 2016, 12:25:09 AM »
Well, coming back to everything after quite the hiatus, and since I'm going to be watching the AIW2 stuff closely, what better way to come back then actually finish off some AIWC stuff I've never actually completed all the way.

First up, Fallen Spire. As I know I'm going to do the Fallen Spire pretty much all the other fancy toys are off.

It's a straightforward Diff 7/7, Random All Non-Technologist for both, no secondary commanders.

Taking the Spire Bladespawner, I end up with the following map:



This is from a couple hours in, but my homeworld was Thetsuvu, the top-left of the 3 systems I control.

As I'm going Fallen Spire I'm pretty lax in my scouting, only get them out a couple systems in each direction, then I start on the first Subspace signal on my homeworld. During this time I conquer Roqa, I'm going to need the systems and resources to proceed down the spire storyline.

Second Subspace signal is at Parmaraeo, it's South East from my lower system (Ginhasdark). Note that at this time I didn't control Ginhasdark so I neuter it and escort the shard across two systems back to my homeworld. This is a closer thing then I'd like however, shard has about 80% HP when it arrives.

Once that shard is back, I'm off to Siptio for the next signal. This is South West from Ginhasdark and I'm uncomfortable just escorting it back after what happened to the first shard so I conquer Ginhasdark to make things easier.

I then note that Sipito has a fortress covering the wormhole from Grinhasdark so I dump my bombers in to take it out.

Instead, my bombers get mauled by a Enclave Guard Post, Mirv Guard post and a Munitions booster guard post so that attack is done.

Fortunately I kept the rest of my fleet back so it's all intact and the wormhole from Parmaraeo to Sipito is clear, I can sneak my fleet in that way and start picking off those nasty guardposts from range. Parmaraeo is even neutered already as it was where the previous signal was.

Beyond that, it's been a pretty straightforward campaign, the fun starts once I get the spire buildings going.

As far as science spending goes, it's Bombers II, BladeSpawner II, Harvester Exo-Forcefields, and Military Command II. Harvester upgrades are planned once I start really needing the metal, but that's going to wait until the Spire fleet starts needing them.

D.

Offline Diazo

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Re: Catching the Fallen Spire
« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2016, 12:14:23 AM »
Short session tonight:


I didn't conquer any systems tonight, just advanced the Fallen Spire storyline by a step.

My next subspace signal (the Refugee outpost) one was on Siptio (P5). That nice wormhole from Ginhasdark (P3) however was a death trap. In range of 2xMLRS Guardposts, a Fortress, an Enclave Guardpost, all boosted by a Munitions booster outpost. Note this is a Mark III system....

Thankfully the wormhole from Parmaraeo (P4) was clear, I transported my fleet in via that route and picked everything apart from range.

Straightforward neutering of the system followed (thank you Bladespawners) and the signal was scanned and retrieved without issue.

However, my next signal is on Yahpiwep (P6) and it's a MkIV world with some pretty heavy defences, not core world level but pretty close. Scouting the adjacent systems, Swoquibul (P7) and Anvamb (P8) are even more heavily defended, heavy enough I'd call them core worlds if they were MkIV instead of MkIII.

I'm going to have to conquer Icyaewo (P5) to get this next signal, but I'm hoping I can just neuter Yaepiwhep and retrieve the signal. Icyaewo is where I wanted to put my defensive line, if I have to conquer Yaepihwep it's going to sit abandoned in the late game because I won't be able to hold it.

Not sure how I'm going to proceed yet, will mull it over while I conquer Icyaewo next session.

D.

Offline Cinth

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Re: Catching the Fallen Spire
« Reply #2 on: October 04, 2016, 02:56:27 AM »
I'm pretty lax in my scouting

That could bite you badly. 

I'm uncomfortable just escorting it back after what happened to the first shard

And it begins  >D

I'm going to have to conquer Icyaewo (P5) to get this next signal, but I'm hoping I can just neuter Yaepiwhep and retrieve the signal. Icyaewo is where I wanted to put my defensive line, if I have to conquer Yaepihwep it's going to sit abandoned in the late game because I won't be able to hold it.

I just can't let you walk blind, you're a planner.  Spire Cities do have a placement restriction.  There has to be 2 planets between each, and to upgrade them later, no AI on the neighbors.

Quote from: keith.lamothe
Opened your save. My computer wept. Switched to the ST planet and ship icons filled my screen, so I zoomed out. Game told me that it _was_ totally zoomed out. You could seriously walk from one end of the inner grav well to the other without getting your feet cold.

Offline Diazo

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Re: Catching the Fallen Spire
« Reply #3 on: October 04, 2016, 09:48:23 AM »
I'm pretty lax in my scouting

That could bite you badly.

Ehh, we'll see. Fallen Spire is more "conquer everything" really so scouting isn't as important.

Mind you, no raid engines yet and there's a few of those hidden somewhere....
I'm uncomfortable just escorting it back after what happened to the first shard

And it begins  >D

Yes, yes it does.

/cowers in the corner.  8)

I'm going to have to conquer Icyaewo (P5) to get this next signal, but I'm hoping I can just neuter Yaepiwhep and retrieve the signal. Icyaewo is where I wanted to put my defensive line, if I have to conquer Yaepihwep it's going to sit abandoned in the late game because I won't be able to hold it.

I just can't let you walk blind, you're a planner.  Spire Cities do have a placement restriction.  There has to be 2 planets between each, and to upgrade them later, no AI on the neighbors.

I knew about the placement restriction, but not about the no AI on neighbors thing. Is that newer thing or have I simply never made far enough into the spire storyline to hit it before?

I've never made it past 2 Spire Cities before so how the late-game goes with the Spire is totally new to me.

D.

Offline Aklyon

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Re: Catching the Fallen Spire
« Reply #4 on: October 04, 2016, 10:37:26 AM »
No AI on the neighbors has always been a thing, afaik.

Offline Cinth

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Re: Catching the Fallen Spire
« Reply #5 on: October 04, 2016, 01:53:16 PM »
No AI on the neighbors has always been a thing, afaik.

It's always been a thing.  You'll need to do that when you go to upgrade them to level 2.

Ehh, we'll see. Fallen Spire is more "conquer everything" really so scouting isn't as important.
Knowing the exo path is very important.
Quote from: keith.lamothe
Opened your save. My computer wept. Switched to the ST planet and ship icons filled my screen, so I zoomed out. Game told me that it _was_ totally zoomed out. You could seriously walk from one end of the inner grav well to the other without getting your feet cold.

Offline Diazo

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Re: Catching the Fallen Spire
« Reply #6 on: October 05, 2016, 12:24:26 AM »
Again, shortish play session tonight.



Tonight was conquering Icyaewo (my southern most system in the screenshot) and beachheading Yaepihwep (the Mark IV west of it) so I could survey and return my next shard so I could build my first city.

I also spend a chunk of Science points, notably on Missile Turrets Mk II for the beachhead, although I did unlock Missile Frigates Mk II also.

Total unlocks so far are now:
Bombers MkII
Missile Frigates MkII
Bladespawners MkII
Military Command MkII
Harvester ExoFields
Hardended ForceFields MkI
Missile Turrents MkII
Tachyon Beam Emiter Turret.
7,750 science points available.

A beachhead of full cap Missile Turrets Mk I and Mk II in the beachhead made the shard retrieval pretty easy. I was surprised by just how many units got sent after me, I didn't count but I think it was getting up towards 1000 enemy units total over all the waves that got sent after the shard.

What did almost get me was the wave that hit unannounced (I think I just missed the wave notification actually, was in galaxy map planning my city layout) when I actually started construction on my first city. I actually lost the command station on Ginhasdark (my center system) when that hit, mainly because it was cloaked ships. I also lost the energy collector and had to scrap 30k ships worth of energy to get back to positive energy to get my defenses back online.

This was another ~1000 enemy ship wave.

Fortunately every system is forted up as I have not been raiding guard posts so they are all valid wave targets, and I was able to fully refleet while I was building the Spire Colony Ship from the retrieved shard, so after I realized what was happening it was straightforward enough to clean up and rebuild the system.

However, I did run into an issue where if Remains Rebuilders can't rebuild their target (due to energy shortage in my case), they get stuck. This mean the energy collector wasn't rebuilt automatically, I had to manually build a second one before the Remains Rebuilders straightened themselves out and finished rebuilding the system.

At this point I had to shut down for the night, my systems are secure and fully rebuilt so I'm in good position to continue tomorrow.

Looking at the screen shot above, you can see my planned City locations marked with P9. I'll have 6 cities once I work my way down the right side of the map, the one wildcard is there is a small chance one of the AI homeworlds is down there. I think they are both on the left side of the map, one top and bottom, but having not scouted that far I'm not 100% sure.

This also means the 2 cities in the center left (of my layout on the right side of the map) will not be upgradable to 6 structures for quite a bit. They are going to be my 3rd and 4th spire city build, but I won't be expanding westwards until all 6 cities are built so I won't be upgrading them until that time.

First Spire City is built in Roqa (top rirght) next to my homeworld (top left), first order of business next session is clearing down the right side of the map (Wayfolu) so I can upgrade that city.

On the subject of my AI opponents, I selected Random and hid the type. However between the cloaked raid on my command station and the high unit counts and types, I'm pretty sure I'm up against a Cloaker and a Neinzul of some variation.

I'm also running a gamble with my homeworld anchoring the top of my defense line, I'm going to fortify it tremendously but that gives me no defensive depth so we'll see if that's doable. I'm only on Diff 7/7 with the Fallen Spire faction at 4 so I think it's doable?

Until next time,

D.



« Last Edit: October 05, 2016, 12:32:58 AM by Diazo »

Offline Cinth

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Re: Catching the Fallen Spire
« Reply #7 on: October 05, 2016, 12:49:10 AM »
Yeah, building the city spawns an angry wave to kill that city before it's built.  I don't think it's announced either (like the chase exos).

I think I would have started the 1st at home and went with Liktherway, Yaepihwep, Ijibo, Mifiadm for the 5 cities.  Like you, I'm assuming the AI's are both on the left.  This would lock in a good number of planets to build an econ and lots of Knowledge!  It also reinforces your homeworld.

Based on where the AI hit you, Liktherway is likely on the exo path.  AI can still theoretically be in the bottom right (Enanthofen) and throw a wrench in that plan.

I'm only on Diff 7/7 with the Fallen Spire faction at 4 so I think it's doable?

If you don't take at least 110 planets, I'll be disappointed.
Quote from: keith.lamothe
Opened your save. My computer wept. Switched to the ST planet and ship icons filled my screen, so I zoomed out. Game told me that it _was_ totally zoomed out. You could seriously walk from one end of the inner grav well to the other without getting your feet cold.

Offline Diazo

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Re: Catching the Fallen Spire
« Reply #8 on: October 05, 2016, 11:56:21 PM »
Haha, umm, wow.

That was a major spike in difficulty there, just got steamrolled.

Tonight started smoothly, conquered Wayfolu to allow my first Spire City to level up and got my 2 shipyards out to get my first Spire CA built.

However, once the scanning was complete, the next signal is on Shorin, way down in the bottom left of the map. This is four hops out from my homeworld and farther from any of my other worlds.

However, I've been easily handling everything the AI throws at me, including a combined CPA, Spire Exo wave and both normal wave hitting within 20 seconds of each other. Didn't even lose more then a couple turrets handling that.

So I figure I can beachead the first hop and then run the shard back the other 3 hops as I really don't want to be extending my territory out that way for a long time yet. With all my spire fleet and a couple of Zenith caches I popped for a few hundred more ships I figure it should be doable.

Technically I even got the shard back safely, it had reached the safe zone under the turrets in my beachhead system, still being pursed by 500 units though so I'm running my fleet around playing rearguard as the shard is down to about 15% hp.

Then I get the big "You have lost" text across the top of my screen. Another 1500 ships came from another direction that I'd totally missed while and was focused on keeping the shard alive and popped my home command station.

Oops.

Still think I can do a beachhead and run the shard back, I'm just going to blow all my Knowledge that I was trying to save for Spire ship unlocks on defensive structures. Probably going to get the Forts, those should be able to blunt what I'm going to be facing.

But the AI response to this shard recovery is a huge jump in difficulty, probably faced 50-60% the firepower in this response as I have in the entire game up until now. (I'm about the 4 hour mark, not sure exactly as I closed the game after I'd lost.)

Time to reload and try again, I won't have any more playtime until the weekend though.

D.
« Last Edit: October 05, 2016, 11:58:56 PM by Diazo »

Offline Cinth

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Re: Catching the Fallen Spire
« Reply #9 on: October 06, 2016, 12:07:24 AM »
Still think I can do a beachhead and run the shard back, I'm just going to blow all my Knowledge that I was trying to save for Spire ship unlocks on defensive structures. Probably going to get the Forts, those should be able to blunt what I'm going to be facing.

Defensive unlocks will play into the stuff you get unlocked for the fleet later on also.  It sounds like a plan :)
Quote from: keith.lamothe
Opened your save. My computer wept. Switched to the ST planet and ship icons filled my screen, so I zoomed out. Game told me that it _was_ totally zoomed out. You could seriously walk from one end of the inner grav well to the other without getting your feet cold.

Offline Diazo

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Re: Catching the Fallen Spire
« Reply #10 on: October 10, 2016, 04:25:59 PM »


Apparently, I'm really good at getting ahead of myself.

You will note my territory has significantly expanded this session from 4 systems to 12. This is because I realized after my game over last time that I was retrieving a city-shard that I couldn't build. I had no systems that were more then two hops from my first Spire city and so couldn't build the second Spire city even if I retrieved the shard somehow.

I now have room for 3 spire cities total, so I can now retrieve 2 city shards before I have to increase my territory again.

While my territory is secure itself, I have 800 threat sitting around that I am in the middle of cleaning up before I try to retrieve the second city-shard that caused my game over last time.

So no advancement of the Spire storyline tonight, but I should be in a position that I can retrieve 2 shards next session.

I also need to decide how I'm going to spend all the knowledge conquering all those systems got me, I've unlocked Fortress Mk I, and Mini-Forts and I still have 27k knowledge left to spend. (Although not all of it is gathered yet.)

No major issues with conquering all those systems, there were 2 eyes but my Spire Fleet is immune to the Translocating Eye and the Raid Eye was a priority target and died before it could get a wave off. Yes, I just nuked the eye with my Spire fleet instead of killing the guard posts, even at this point in the game it only takes 3 salvos from my Spire Fleet to do so. (1 CA, 2 DD, 12 FF)

Chasing down all the loose AI ships cost me a couple command stations though, I cleared the AI systems 3 or 4 at a time so I'd get a few leakers that slipped past my fleet and killed a command station that was under construction.

The only issue I'm running into at the moment is that my defences are so heavy that when a wave hits (either Exo or normal), half of it will decide to try and run away to be come threat, I'm going to have to do regular threat sweeps to keep it under control.

D.