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XPiratez / Help! I am losing games because of score! [Guide]
« on: December 29, 2021, 12:12:18 pm »


This is an average activity graph on Jack Sparrow difficulty. It is full of obvious information, not least of which the amount of score one has to pull every month to stay above 0 infamy. The lower difficulties are obviously easier, but also not a walk in the park, the big activity spikes starting in Apr instead of Feb. The other information is which continent the enemy bases are located. see if you can figure that on your own.

There are a few proactive and reactive ways one can handle these scores. I will focus on the proactive ways, because those are the most difficult to deal with, and ignoring them leads to structural problems later on.

1) Brainers are 50% of the effort.

Brainers do not break even most of the time, but they subsidize the score heavily. Estimates show that brainers are about 50% of monthly score, so you should, within reason, always strive to be at max brainer capacity. Remember that in the month they're hired, brainers cost 300k (200k hire+100k maintenance), but you should do the hiring at the start of the month, and push hire as much as possible.

If you're on Gals are Superior path, remember that you can buy hands for 50k, and you can transform Castaways you rescue into brainers, which, quite frankly, is a great way to keep hiring costs down, if you can handle the lower stats of hands vs castaways. The ?Reject the Power? path also provides 7 gnomes, another way to get your brainer count up fast.

2) Missions are 49% of the effort.

Many people avoid researching new missions. Reasons vary from being afraid they cannot handle harder missions, to being afraid they will lose access to older, easier missions, to being afraid enemies will escalate their difficulty based on what you research, or plain cravenness of getting out of comfort zone. Let me put this clearly.

YOU SHOULD ALWAYS RESEARCH NEW MISSIONS.

You can handle harder missions than you think you are capable of, skipping most of the new missions does not usually penalize you, and enemy difficulty progress is often on a timetable independent of whether or not you keep up, so you do not want to remain left behind, and most importantly NEW MISSIONS (usually) DO NOT LOCK YOU OUT OF OLDER ONES. this is a big one, this is important, and is counter the design philosophy of most modern games. Progress of the player is NOT a penalty, so you do not have to be afraid of your fun being taken away from you just for playing the game.

That said, I have a list here of missions that I will rank in the order of importance to unlock, and a few tips for each. This is, obviously, not an exhaustive list, but stuff that you, more or less, want to have done within the first 6 months.

*!!BOUNTY HUNTING!!

Only the most important goal you have to do in January, no big deal. You should do the Violence pillar of Pirate philosophy as soon as possible, and grab this. It gives you bounty tokens, it gives you huge score, missions are easier than the starting ones even, and the score gotten for doing them is absurd.


*!Warehouse Wars!

Another important goal, if possible, get it in Jan. This will, of course, require you to build a Mess Hall over one of your starting security corridors, interrogate an airbus nurse, and doing Who is Who? The benefits are many enslaveable mooks, the opportunity to score a wrench and a stapler (gateblocks to Workshop), and the opportunity to get easy durathread, some non-sucky firearms (RCF carbines), and even some durable body armor (Tac Vest). Also, the opportunity to learn about the Guild, the easiest way to !Toppling Towers!


*Slavery

It might be odd seeing this in the missions list, but it provides a very important benefit, which is the ability to enslave mooks. Apart from the slaves themselves, one of the MOST important products of slavery is glamour. Why Is glamour important? Well...

*Bounty Badge C

It requires a very hefty investment, you need 200 glamour(!!), and one of each reward from your first bounty hunting clients. I advise NOT gabling at all until you get the Silver Snake reward from Jack. The benefits for Bounty C is another batch of easy missions, that are very profitable, short, and absurd in points granted. Also the Bounty Challenge that is beyond the scope of the current guide (although if you want an short answer, start in Thebes and do the Mutant Alliance bounty is the easiest and safest.)


*!Undersea Treasures!

Many people are scared of underwater. You should not be. In general, a strong team of topless gals with javelins and O2 tanks can pretty much run roughshod over most opponents underwater.

The two exceptions are: Hallucinoids (Abort mission) and Sharkmen (pikewall/spearwall). Scout the first turn by depleting unit movement to 50%. If you see any of those, either bail, or take appropriate-advanced tactics into account. If you DON'T see anyone, it's almost certainly hallucinoids. Use the other 50% to run.

*Undersea Operations

Is an upgrade to the above, which means just more of the same.

*!Monster Hunts!

Easy missions that require you to bully some defenseless monsters. Easiest done in multi-level craft like Snake, Shadowbat, Dutchman, Hawk, Scarab...you get the idea. Single level craft will have a lot more trouble due to the monsters dogpiling the craft, so you better have Armors with Shield and good melee master guarding dem doors. Another curveball is another crew of hunters fighting you instead of monsters later in the game. Ratmen are no big deal, Ninjas and PCMs are trouble, Nomads are... well, better just go to your craft and leave.

*!Toppling Towers!

One of the first true mid-game missions, it is still not very hard, while providing good guns and engineers for your research. Do it with care, but the opportunities are worth it.

*!Bandit Camps!

One of the more fun but exhausting missions. You can go at night, and depending on spawns, you can do it with relative safety. The main benefit is the absurd score this mission grants.

*!Neophyte Camp!

Much like Bandit Camps, it is a mission full of squishies that gives you score, but the problem is the fact that some of them carry panzerfausts, which CAN ruin your day and craft if you're not paying attention.

*!Bandit Business!

This is bandit camps, but on steroids. Normally I avoid this until getting at least Metal Armor, if not Tac Armor. It is long and dangerous, while not providing that great rewards at the level you are at the time.

*Logistics

This one gates the spawn of Dark Ones missions starting from August. Dark ones are relatively easy to handle so you should of course do Logistics research (though it also gates some useful contacts, so not sure why someone wouldn't do it by then anyway).

*!Underground Missions! AKA the Newb Lokk Darwinian Gauntlet

I hate these missions seemingly because I always lose about half of the lokks I send there. If you want to improve your survival chances, Slayer(S) and somewhat trained lokks are a must. Bring fast shotguns, or suppressed pistols.

*!Socializing! Party Dress

This is an odd one. You can only bring gals to it. The mission is under a heavy morale and freshness draining aura, and you are limited to zero weapons. You will face, in the order of difficulty: bandits, ninjas or ghosts. You cannot retreat. Despite it being non-lethal, this mission is QUITE hard. Bring your gals naked, this way they will get assigned random outfits, possibly even overpowered ones. If you go in party dresses, this advantage will be lost. The gals have to have good scores in bravery, excelent melee scores, and zero levels of Shellshocked and possibly Traditional and Radical. Do not bring warm bodies pointlessly! If you have only one or two available melee gals, hard pass. You need about 6 to be effective. There is a quarterstaff in the basement, and the ground floor has easily defensible bathroom doors, which you will have to heavily lean on. If you get ghosts, even if they faint, keep attacking their downed bodies with the quarterstaff (or martial arts) until the ZZZzs dissapear.

*!Highway House!

This mission is a two-trick pony. You will face a serious contingent of Highwaymen (no big deal), Stormrats (fucking resilient goddamned bastards - need high powered guns, melee, or non-traditional damage sources like flamethrowers or big bows). The second snag is the field gun who appears in fromt if a L-shaped house. It will not move, but has sniper behaviour and will ALSO react on you if you cross its facing or end your turn in its LOS. The first way to deal with it is to carefully sneak a melee gal through the building to  the gun's back and ax him a question. The second, easier way is to use poison gas grenades to kill the gun, one or two should be enough. The third way would be to throw any explosive. Note that this will destroy the 25mm ammo in the gun which is presumably what you're there for in the first place. (Dr. Vahlen told me to inform you of this.)


*Mansions
*Organ Grinder
*UAC Vaults

These missions I would rate relatively dangerous. They are worth doing, no question about it, but they are really firmly set in the early midgame, and your issues by then are not surviving the score. There are multiple ways to survive them easily, but you're better off asking on Discord about them, the tactics for them cannot be condensed as easy.

3) Abusing ninjas for fun profit.

If the ninjas are next door to you, or if you have a reasonably durable ship with some guns, you can abuse ninja Outposts to recoup some of the points they steal from you. The principle is to grind the infinite jetbikes or jetfighters to convince the government you are not resting on your laurels. You can bully Airfields, Outposts and HQ lv1 and 2. AVOID Fortresses and HQ lv3, those require realllly specialized equipment.

Tactic A) Convoy with 3 14mm chainguns and 4 decent pilots + a puller(ship with 2450+ speed: Hawk, Pachyderm, Hunter-Killer). Park your convoy next to your base, fly your puller to your oupost of choice, gather a bunch of jetbikes, and carefully maneouver yourself back to base. The jetbikes will target the convoy, and will happily be ground to a paste by the triple 14mm. Can use 25mmx2, 30mm, oscillators, charger lasers. Avoid rattlesnakes, 50mm, singlet 25mm. If you have GOOD pilots you can even use LMG or HMG.

You can do this about 3 times per month, and the convoy is cheap enough to sell damaged ones and buy pristine ones to avoid hefty repair times.

Tactic B) If you have acces to shielded ships, or ships that repair fast (Fortuna, Bonaventura, Metallo, Snake), you can forsake the convoy/puller combo, and use the ship of your choice to bully them directly. Careful though! All those this are expensive and/or irreplaceable, so for the love of all that is holy, use GOOD pilots. (+35/+35% at least). Weapon choice is expanded to include Quadcannon as a hvy mount, and spikes as missile mounts). If you lose your menace to this, do not come crying to me. You've been warned!

Anyway, if I missed anything, or needs expanding, post here, and I'll revise and refine the guide as much as possible.

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XPiratez / Uber Piratey Squad Inaction (Collaborative AAR)
« on: June 14, 2019, 11:17:10 am »
((This is the AAR thread for the community game organized here. https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php?topic=7187.0
The clerical work is all done there. While in-character or out of character interaction is welcome here, try not to be too offtopic, thankyou.))

Captain's log day 1: It was a long day. I woke up today groaning expecting another battery of goddamned tests, and through a string of WEIRD circumstances, I ended up on an Airbus, escaped the research facilities alongside 6 other dweebs, and they fucking elected me CAPTAIN. First of all, captain of what? Why? I have no goddamned clue. Apparently, everyone voted for themselves, except some lady who voted for me. She's there in the corner looking at me with a creepy grin on her face. What the ever-loving fuck.

Captain's log, supplemental: We arrived in a ...cave? Somewhere in Africa? And 3 other VERY busty gals are also here, along with 10 other random rag-tag group of dirty villagers.





And they're all babbling about some kind of shadowy benefactors that helped us meet, set up this cave for us, some kind of shadow plot and that we're destined for great things. And I have a duty as the leader of them all to make it happen. Oh and that they expect a salary of 100 k $ EACH.

Wish I didn't get out of bed this morning. I need a drink. Where am I supposed to get that much money? For that matter, WHAT IS MY SALARY? 0, that's what.

MEETING THE DWEEBS:

Alright, since I have to 'lead' this place, let's look at who the peeps are.


This one kept playing with a dagger during the Airbus flight. Challenged me to a game of 'five finger fillet'. I declined. Dweeb.



Creepy smile girl. What the hell is she doing?




This one was swinging an axe around. Why does she have an axe?



Didn't see her much, she was piloting the bus.



This one's so thin, it's a surprise she can stand up at all under her own weight. Apparently, she was on some kind of protest called 'hunger strike'. What in the everloving fuck. Who does that? Dweeb.



She has a murderous look about her. Lurked in a dark corner all flight. Looks like she means to RIP AND TEAR. Restless hands. What have I got myself into?


That's enough for today. Gonna go take a bath in the sewers. I hear they have glowing water down there. My favorite. Will resume once I get some new things to write about. Or not, if the Academy charges down the door tomorrow.

-- 2019-06-14, edit by Meridian, resized the images

3
XPiratez / Succesion-Style Collaborative X-Piratez Let's play!
« on: June 09, 2019, 10:58:25 pm »
Hey guys, MagicSkeleton here.

I am trying to gauge interest for a collaborative-style X-Piratez playthrough. For those who don't know what that is, you can look up probably the most famous of them all, Boatmurdered from Dwarf Fortress.

https://lparchive.org/Dwarf-Fortress-Boatmurdered/Introduction/

Essentially, I am looking for a list of players to take turns playing one single save file from start of the piratical enterprise to (hopefully) happy end. We each play one or two months (depending on the interest and how many signups we get), then pass on the savegame to the next person. The person who is done with the turn should write an after-action-report (AAR) here and provide us with exciting screenshots from his gameplay. (If you love this mod as much as I, then you know we need more exposure, so a good chain of AARs can be shared and might get us new fellow players.)

If you have any suggestions or opinion, post it here, or find me on Discord.


AARs go here: https://openxcom.org/forum/index.php/topic,7193.0.html

DA RULZ:

*Difficulty 4 - We don't want Jack Sparrow.
*Supermutant - No Save Scumming! (Well, not unless you're into savefile backups -- We can't check that so we'll take your word as pirate's honor)
*Codex pick - The guy whose turn it is picks the codex.
*After you're done with your game, pass the savefile to me AND to the next guy. If, for some reason, someone drops off the face of the planet, we can resume from my copy.
*New signups go at the tail of the queue, if we run out of people, the queue starts over with the first person and cycles again.
*Each different player gets to name ONE of one's soldiers after onerself. Losing any named soldiers as such is going to be met with severe glares of disapproval and eternal shaming.
*One week per player. If one is done faster, pass the savefile, then writeup the AAR. I am afraid that the longer we go, interest will wane so no sense in prolonging the game more than necessary.
*We will upgrade the game in the middle if needed.
*First 6 will play 2 months each, everyone else will play 1 month each. (Due to the inflation of things to do late-game.)
*Will shuffle the order in which everyone plays.


Things to decide:

-How much real life time allowed between turns.
-How many months each gets to play.
-Do we update the game mid-game or not?
-Do we take signups after the game starts? I am thinking of adding new signups/interested guys at the bottom of the list, before the rotation starts if anyone late wants to join. Again, depending on the number  of signups.

Members:

Magic Skeleton
Great Tuna
Thinky
Solarius Scorch
Legion of One
Dioxine
Gothmos
Grub Leafeater
Tiff Aching
Nep Nep
Marza


Order of action:

Magic Skeleton
Legion of One
Thinky
Marza
Dioxine
Nep Nep
Great Tuna
Grub Leafeater (MIA)
Solarius Scorch (partial turn, 13 days)
Tiff Aching (Withdrawn)
Gothmos (Passed turn)
Magic Skeleton (partial turn, 26 days)
Legion of One  (partial turn, 10 days)
Thinky <----
Marza
Dioxine
Nep Nep
Great Tuna
(Grub Leafeater?)
Solarius Scorch
Gothmos
Magic Skeleton
Legion of One

4
I am new to the mod though I am used to play Xcom on the highest difficulties.

Thus, this was  Jack Sparrow Ironman so this might be something. Also this was my first game that lasted this long, I restarted all other before the third or so month.

At around 18 months I got hit by a raider invasion sporting some serious plasma guns (I assume). Thing is, I have never even seen a plasma gun before, not on any of the raider craft downed, so their invasion was absolutely uncharacteristically brutaly difficult.

Thei also had reapers, and my only previous encounter with those I stood on the roof of my shadowbat throwing potshots at them with boarding guns. For obvious reasons, that was not an option now.

After the reapers poured an army of humongous raiders with plasma weaponry and I assume alien grenade launchers. 2 of those grenades reduced my metal armored boarding-gun toting gals to ash.

Is this normal? I've never even seen weapons like that and I have barely unlocked Eurosyndicate laser rifles.

What's more I had a backwater base that had not done anything of note with. Was still building, did not shoot down any shipping from it, hell, all I had in the stores was 1 tamed reaper.

Not 5 days after my primary base got wrecked (unfortunate, but I assumed that it was not unrecoverable), my backwater base was hit by humanists. (Or maybe government? They had Military police and tanks) While I understood the raider punitive assault (I did really shoot down A LOT of them), I did not understand this second base assault since I kept away from government suff, and basically stopped only 1 humanist pogrom.

Poor reaper got destroyed on turn 2 and I lost the game.

So, apparently, I read on the forums that it's not ususual for out of depth difficult assaults to appear at 18ish months. Is that sort of an 'exam'? What should I do to prepare better? Since january the second year I have been progressing very slowly with no major weapons breakthrough(unupgraded boarding guns still the best).

There was an faction facility raid I ignored because the rookie that went down fist got plasmaed by a cyberdisk and I noped out of there. Should I have done that?

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