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RichardCranium

How I managed to succeed in IA0204 without using God Mode.

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(Please note that the words "every time" and "often" aren't anywhere in the title. That's for a reason.)

For those of you who haven't played any of the Instant Death Action scenarios, IA0204 is where you (playing as Lucas) and your squad mates are on the northwest corner of an mzone that contains a Starbase, barracks, communications center, and a GDN4 SAM that you have to take out.

Oh, and a vehicle that contains a fireteam of Gammulans who aren't real happy to see you that is to your west.

And an inbound assault gunship with even more annoyed Gammulans that is going to land to the south west of your starting position.

Your ticket out of there (well, the one the scenario wants you to use versus the DJP) is to the southwest of your current position.

The only way I've ever won the damned thing (i.e. seen the message "MISSION SUCCESS: YOU WERE SAFELY EVACUATED FROM THE BASE") was to do the following:

  1. Immediately use your jetpack and fly due south. There is a supply station down there and you'll be better off with something other than the assault rifle you're holding. Leave your squad mates in escort mode; hopefully the Vanguards that are coming to kill all of you will be more interested in them.
  2. When you get to the supply station, re-equip yourself with profile 6. That gives you a DTR4A, which is slightly less powerful than a PL12 (wow, I've misidentified that all over the forum) but has a higher rate of fire than the PL12. Given that you will be almost swimming in Gammulans in a few seconds, the higher rate of fire will save your butt. Select "weapons" while you are there to top off your ammo. If you feel lucky, you can select "health" but that might eat time that you don't have.
  3. Hit "k". If the range to the nearest bad thing is less than 200m, jetpack to your WSW as far as you can to the building. You would like to hide from the things coming out of the comms center and barracks. Equip yourself with your DTR4A.
  4. Zoom in and kill things as fast as you can. Your squad mates will help to some extent. Kill Vanguards as soon as you can identify them. You will have enemies coming at you from 270 degree arc; your SW quadrant is the only direction that's safe.
  5. After you've killed everything that came out of the gunship and vehicle, you have a strong chance of making it the rest of the way. Kill anything that's coming out of the barracks or comms center. You should be able to have a few seconds where there are no Gammulan troops on the radar.
  6. When there aren't any Gammulan troops on the radar, send all of your squad members to re-supply via the command menu (F9 to look at them, "c" then F8 to tell them to re-supply). I have had them do some weird stutter-step freeze-in-place dance while they attempt to re-supply. Run over to them and bump them to knock them out of their funk. After each troop has resupplied, give them a SAD mission ("c" then F4). Don't worry, they will find something to do.
  7. To your ENE (more or less), there is a building between you, the radar jammer, and the barracks. Jetpack to the top of it. There will be more Gammulan troops coming out of the Starbase, barracks, and/or comms center who would like to kill you. They pretty much come out in pairs, so from your vantage point on the building and your squad mates on the ground, they should not live very long.
  8. The building that you should be standing on has a walkway running east-west. Go to the east end. Look to your ESE by the barracks. You'll see a square area that contains all sorts of goodies, such as a YN99MK1 and LADMK1 turret. Zoom in with your sniper rifle and destroy the LADMK1. (It will probably kill you if you don't.) Leave YN99MK1; you'll need it in a minute or so. Kill any Gammulan troops that have come out to play.
  9. The jammer that is to your east has a convenient place to stand that's high off the ground. (Some type of beam that holds the radar reflector. In this case, it's oriented north-south.) Jetpack over to it. Kill any Gammulan troops that have come out to play. Look for another square area to the north of the barracks that contains goodies, such as a YN99MK1 and LADMK1 turret. Zoom in with your sniper rifle and destroy the LADMK1. (It will probably kill you if you don't.) Leave YN99MK1; you'll need it in a minute or so. Honest.
  10. Kill any Gammulan troops that have come out to play. (Yes, they keep coming. We are about to do something about that.)
  11. Equip yourself with your frag grenades. Fly over to and over the barracks. Throw down 3 of your frag grenades on top of the barracks. Fly towards the square goodies area that's to the north of the barracks.
  12. The barracks should blow up, which removes one place that generates Gammulan infantry.
  13. See if there is a rocket launcher available in the north goodies area. Resupply your grenades. Kill any Gammulan troops that have come out to play. (They can come from the Starbase and the Comms center.)
  14. When there aren't any Gammulan troops on the radar, use the nearby YN99MK1. Hit the backspace key to arm it, hit "t" once or twice, aim it at the Comms center to your SW and hit the "/" key to make the diamond stop. Pump all the missiles it has towards the Comms center; that should suffice to blow up that building.
  15. Hit ctrl-E to step back from the YN99MK1 and then grab it. Fly over to the south goodies area. We are about to exploit what I'm pretty sure is a bug. Drop the YN99MK1 that you have near the other YN99MK1 that is already there.
  16. When you use one YN99MK1, the other one will immediately re-arm. You can walk back and forth between the two that you have and pretty much destroy everything that you can see. Such as the Starbase that's to your east. Walk to a YN99MK1, use it, press "t" to change the radar mask to EAD, face the Starbase, press backspace to arm, press "/" to select something in the line of sight, depress the muzzle so you can hit the Starbase, and hit space until the diamond goes away. Walk over to the other YN99MK1, rinse and repeat until you see the mushroom cloud of glory instead of a Starbase.
  17. Use your YN99MK1s to take out the MFB, the Command and Control building, the air defense shield, the nuclear reactor, and the jammer in the same fashion.
  18. Give your squad mates the "defend me" command. You're about ready to destroy the GDN4 and get the hell out of there.
  19. Use your YN99MK1s to take out the GDN4 that you were sent there to take out.
  20. As soon as you take out the GDN4, more Gammulan infantry will show up to your west to say hello. You, on the other hand, had better be jetpacking towards your escape aircraft to your SSE. Select your sniper rifle and stop on occasion to kill any Vanguard that is convenient to kill. They may have missile launchers, so you really don't want them within 500m of you.
  21. When you get near the aircraft, go prone and kill anything you can until your "what's a jetpack?" squad members get within 100m or so.
  22. Use the pilot position. Let your squad mates get on the aircraft.
  23. Stay as low as you can without actually taxiing and haul ass to the SE. Jam as needed. If you get far enough away from the smoking crater where the Starbase used to be, you'll get to see the lovely message "MISSION SUCCESS: YOU WERE SAFELY EVACUATED FROM THE BASE".

Good luck! You'll probably die in step 4 (bullet to the head or Vanguard missile) or 23 (aircraft missile), but it's really possible to succeed without cheating.

I don't think that it's possible to succeed often without cheating, but you may be able to if you are a better shot with an assault rifle than I am.

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On further thought, I don't think that you should get into the escape craft until there is ~2 minutes left on the clock. You want to be in the air and far enough away when the scenario timer pops, but not in the air long enough for the scrambled aircraft to get within the 30km or whatever required to get a missile lock that will splash your butt.

Leaving early does not appear to work in your favor, as I found out today when I tried again.

[EDIT: Leaving late doesn't work either, as I found out today (that's a different today than the one in the original message). So you have to get some distance from the base without getting shot down. I've been flying due south to get away; I'm now thinking that you need to fly to the SE in order to increase your distance from the center of the base as fast as possible.]

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After further experimentation, I'm not sure what the success criteria actually are.

I've since toyed with destroying both launch pads on the base (Helix base, for those who would like to know) and flying off to the north or north west. No matter how far away I go to the north or northwest, I don't get the magic message indicating mission success.

For that matter, I've grabbed a shuttle and used the tractor beam on the escape aircraft (while Steve is sitting in it) to haul it with me while flying to the east and south east. No magic message.

Every other time after posting this, I've been splashed by aircraft originating from the bases to the south after destroying the objective and flying the designated aircraft out of the area of operations.

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Insane. When I wrote that script, even I had to cheat in order to complete that mission within a reasonable amount of time - while not getting capped.

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Also in step 23, the trick - as you said - is to stay low so that the ground defense systems don't ping you. Once they do, you're dead. So pay VERY CLOSE ATTENTION to your TWI (game manual p18)

Sadly, I never got the chance to give the NPCs the ability to use a jetpack. I already knew how to do it, but just ran out of time and never found time to do it post-patch.

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Amusingly, the most consistent way that I've found to win is to not take out the target GDN, but just get everyone into the escape craft after taking out the two launch pads with grenades. The "you win!" message pops up if there aren't any enemy infantry out to play.

I don't really consider that a win, since you didn't really complete your main task. I only found out about it when I intended to use the missiles on the escape craft to take out the target when I almost ran out of time to complete the mission (for some reason, it was like I had kicked a fire ant mound; there was a steady stream of enemy infantry coming out to kill us).

I've had much better luck (which will go away immediately after I post this, judging from the last time) doing the following as Lucas:

  1. Jet pack to the south towards the supply station. Give all your squad mates search-and-destroy commands (F4 on the command menu) while you are flying. On your way to the supply station, arm yourself with frag grenades and fly over the launch pad on the way there. Drop the 2 frags you've got on the launch pad and keep going to the supply station. That'll take out one of the two launch pads.
  2. When you get to the supply station, get profile #6. Re-arm and re-fit. Leave the station, lie down, and use your DTR4A to kill any infantry that you can see. (Vanguards still get the priority killing.) Always kill any infantry that you can see with your sniper rifle with Vanguards being the priority targets. I won't keep mentioning that.
  3. When there's no infantry available to kill, run over to the other launch pad and toss 2 frags on it. Run/jet pack over to the building that is to your north with the convenient east-west walkway that gives you a nice sniping roost.
  4. Take out the LADMK1's that are by the barracks, since they will hurt you at the most inconvenient moment.
  5. When there's only green dots on the TRP radar, tell your squad mates to go to the supply station.
  6. Here's the tricky part: after your squad mates have resupplied, fly down to the little area to the south of the barracks that contains all sorts of supplies as well as a YN99MK1. You can get killed here, since the barracks may spawn someone who doesn't like you. Get more grenades (can't have too many, I say) and check the long, flat container that contains weapons. If you're lucky, you'll find a rocket launcher in there. If you aren't so lucky, you can try to use the YN99MK1 to take out the target but you'll have to expose yourself more that way. If you did find a rocket launcher, there is also a container of missiles in the same little area. Grab them.
  7. Start running for the escape craft. Change your radar mode so you can select it, target it and tell your squad mates to go to it (via cycling through F9, c, F9). (The first one to get to the craft will reset the other two fellow's commands to do something else. So get ready to command the remaining two to get their butts on the chopper.)
  8. While they are running over to the escape chopper, there is a large square building to the south of the comms center. Jet pack up to the top of it; you can see the target GDN4 from there.
  9. Use your rocket launcher (if you're lucky) or your YN99MK1 (if you're not, since that doesn't provide a missile lock) to take out the target. There's another GDN4 to the ENE of you, towards the nuke plant. You should try to take it out too. (Easy with rocket launcher, hard with YN99MK1.)
  10. After you take out the target, more infantry shows up to your N and NNW. Use your sniper rifle to kill them all.
  11. Jet pack down to the escape chopper. Climb into the pilot's seat. You should have around 9 minutes left on the clock.
  12. Get off the ground and arm your missiles. Select EAD radar mode. Start flying WNW. Select the nearest SAM/SAL that wants to kill you and do unto them first. There's about 3 or 4 of them on that side of the starbase that you'll probably have to take out on your way out of the AO.
  13. Stay low and head towards the hills. If nothing locks on to you, you should get the coveted "MISSION SUCCESS: YOU WERE SAFELY EVACUATED FROM THE BASE" message fairly soon. Any aircraft that scrambled to your south, unfortunately, will probably get a lock on you. Hit the jammers and pray.

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Insane. When I wrote that script, even I had to cheat in order to complete that mission within a reasonable amount of time - while not getting capped.

That pretty much describes all the other ground combat instant action scenarios. This is the only one that I've had a chance of completing successfully since there aren't any aircraft around.

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IA0204 condition will resolve if you make it back to the rescue gunship. Destroying the GDN unit is only a bonus since these scenarios don't have a clear cut win or lose since they are designed to be open and not locked to any one outcome. There are no other conditions to satisfy and the script has nothing to do with how many infantry are in the scene at the time. Here is the script source as I wrote it.


#CAREER : BURKE [MOBILE INFANTRY MARINE]
#OBJECTIVE : LOCATE AND DESTROY A GDN4 SAM UNIT
#TIME : 16:00:00
#LENGTH : 00:00:30
#REGION : MZA01, WEATHER: NORMAL

THE GAMMULANS ARE DEPLOYING NEWER AND DEADLIER GDN4 SURFACE TO AIR MISSILE UNITS. LOCATE ALL THE GDN4 UNITS AT THE BASE AND DESTROY THEM.

THEN PROCEED TO THE EXTRACTION POINT.
[/code]
[code]
#
# SCENARIO
#
[dynamic]
#include glob_dyn_mp.scr
#
[ai]
#include glob_ai_mp.scr
#
[dynamic]
galaxian diplomat,,satcom,probe.3d,satcom
[ai]
.satcom,100,100,100,100,100,100,1
start orbit blk01z^flx-02,10000,10,90,0
stop
events
!startup
cloak on this
invincible on this
weapons off this
autogen off
acm_skip_enable off
set_tod 1100
set_weather 2
!init_player
set_race terran
set_caste military
set_career elite_force_marine,6
set_playername "LUCAS"
set_region lv115,mza01,base_sbase07,-1163.483,-3374.901,0,0
endevents
#
[acm]
.
:1,lv115z,setupl1,beginl1,resolvel1,level1tick,1,30,1
#
[dynamic]
terran military,,rescue1,intruder,RESCUE1[TARGET]
terran military,,burke,marine_infantry,burke
terran military,,steve,pilot_efp2,steve
terran military,,brad,marine_infantry2,brad
[ai]
#
.burke,100,100,100,100,100,100,0
start on_planet lv115 mza01 -1182.475,-3386.402 0 0
stop
events 1
!startup
invincible on this
slave on this
escort player on
endevents
#
.steve,100,100,100,100,100,100,0
start on_planet lv115 mza01 -1171.211,-3405.225 0 0
stop
events 1
!startup
invincible on this
slave on this
escort player on
endevents
#
.brad,100,100,100,100,100,100,0
start on_planet lv115 mza01 -1150.875,-3408.313 0 0
stop
events 1
!startup
invincible on this
slave on this
escort player on
endevents
#
.rescue1,100,100,100,100,100,100,0
start on_planet lv115 mza01 -2947.085 -2040.427 0 0
stop
events 1
!startup
invincible on this
halt on this
!level1tick
IF FLAG1 this RETURN
IF HERE player 30 THEN
invincible off this
signal upassed,4
FLAG1 ON this
ENDIF
endevents
#
[dynamic]
gammulan military,,a0,gdn4,TARGET
gammulan military,,a1,intruder
gammulan military,,a2,hav
gammulan military,,g1,aggressor
gammulan military,,g2,aggressor
[ai]
#
.a0,100,100,100,100,100,100,0
start on_planet lv115 mza01 -2042.014 -3228.710 0 0
stop
events 1
!under_attack this
LAUNCH marine_vanguard2,2,sad
LAUNCH marine_vanguard4,2,sad
endevents
#
.a1,100,100,100,100,100,100,0
start on_planet lv115 mza01 -2217.758 -4715.104 0 0
stop
events 1
!startup
invincible on this
navigate this lv115 mza01 -1280.899 -3501.254 0 wp1 land
!landed wp1
LAUNCH marine_vanguard,1,sad
LAUNCH marine_vanguard2,1,sad
LAUNCH marine_eguard2,1,sad
LAUNCH marine_frecon4,1,sad
signal takeoff_now
!takeoff_now
navigate this lv115 mza01 -2947.085 -2040.427 0 wp2 land
!landed wp2
halt on this
invincible off this
endevents
#
.a2,100,100,100,100,100,100,0
start on_planet lv115 mza01 -1228.964 -3889.990 0 0
stop
events 1
!startup
halt on this
!deploy_guys1
LAUNCH marine_vanguard,1,sad
LAUNCH marine_vanguard2,1,sad
LAUNCH marine_eguard,1,sad
LAUNCH marine_eguard2,1,sad
!destroyed a0
LAUNCH marine_vanguard3,1,sad
LAUNCH marine_vanguard4,1,sad
LAUNCH marine_eguard3,1,sad
LAUNCH marine_eguard2,1,sad
endevents
#
.g1,100,100,100,100,100,100,0
start on_planet lv115 mza01 -1504.523 -3125.750 0 0
stop
events 1
!deploy_guys1
sad,5
signal new_target1,4
!new_target1
sad,8
signal new_target2,4
!new_target2
sad,9
endevents
#
.g2,100,100,100,100,100,100,0
start on_planet lv115 mza01 -2232.341 -2426.223 0 0
stop
events 1
!deploy_guys1
sad,8
signal new_target1,4
!new_target1
sad,9
signal new_target2,4
!new_target2
sad,5
endevents
#
.satcom
events 1
!beginl1
signal deploy_guys1
!destroyed rescue1
broadcast "RESCUE1 HAS BEEN DESTROYED"
!destroyed a0,player
broadcast "HOSTILE GDN4 TARGET DESTROYED"
ep_add,5000
add_medal,3,1
!destroyed a1,player
ep_add,2500
add_medal,4,1
!destroyed g1,player
ep_add,5000
add_medal,3,1
!destroyed g2,player
ep_add,5000
add_medal,3,1
!upassed
add_medal,3,1
ep_add,5000
acm_off,pass,"MISSION SUCCESS: YOU WERE SAFELY EVACUATED FROM THE BASE"
!resolvel1
acm_off,quit
endevents
#
[event]
!deploy_guys1
!deploy_guys2
!new_target1
!new_target2
!upassed
!takeoff_now
$

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That's very interesting.

I'll have to replay to watch for some things, but I can say that I've never had the two aggressor gunships (g1 and g2) launch during this scenario. [Thank god for small favors; I think this will turn into another deathtrap if they do.]

I've also never seen the Gammulan intruder (a1) that flies in to drop off the load of infantry take off after doing so. (Is it really supposed to fly to ESCAPE1's exact location after dropping off the Gammulan fireteam?)

I've also been flying ESCAPE1 at scenario end with all my squad mates on board without triggering the upassed signal.

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Yeah, I don't have time to explain the script logic. If you read it carefully, it will probably make sense.

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I downloaded the ucce_GBSIV_Full.zip file to see what one dialect of the scripting language could tell me. I now see why I'm not always getting the "MISSION SUCCESS: YOU WERE SAFELY EVACUATED FROM THE BASE" message.

I believe that the aggressor gunship g1 is supposed to start executing a SAD command aimed at personnel at the same time the hav deploys its team (the deploy_guys1 event). After 4 minutes, it switches over to Mobile Infantry marine hunting. After an additional 4 minutes, it spends the rest of the scenario Elite Force marine hunting.

Gunship g2 is similar in that when it receives the deploy_guys1 event, it executes a SAD command aimed at Mobile Infantry targets. After 4 minutes, it switches over to Elite Force marine hunting. After 4 more minutes, it seeks to engage any personnel in the area for the rest of the scenario.

The intruder gunship flies in and lands at wp1. When it lands at wp1, it launches a fireteam of troops and signals the takeoff_now event with no timer delay. It should then handle the takeoff_now event (I assume within 5 seconds) by flying to and landing at wp2 (which happens to be the exact location of rescue1). It then halts and becomes something you can blow up.

It does not appear to me that g1 and g2 are reacting to !deploy_guys1. a1 reacts to !startup and "!landed wp1" but appears to ignore !takeoff_now.

Now, if g1 and g2 did react to !deploy_guys1, then the scenario would be more of a turkey shoot, with me being the turkey.

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yes they are. I checked this over the weekend just to be sure. The deploy_guys1 event is the very first script event that is triggered.

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*spreads hands*

SC, I don't know what to tell you. I've played IA0204 many times (more than 10, probably fewer than 100), both on a stock 32 bit XP environment and under my current Windows 7 64 bit environment. I've never seen a1 move after launching its Gammulan marines and I've never had the two aggressor gunships (g1 and g2) on the base even leave the ground, much less perform any other activity. In fact, the few times that I've tried to destroy g1 and g2 towards the end of the scenario, they appear to be invulnerable.

Since I don't have any means with which to engage g1 and g2 if they did leave the ground, I'd be dead shortly after they decided to engage me. As far as I can tell, in every other IA that you've got with infantry playing the main role there's always an enemy aircraft out there that wants to kill you and inevitably succeeds in doing so. (Well, there's one where the escape craft is hovering over the enemy base, so all the enemy aircraft is attempting to kill it versus me. I'll have to boot over into Windows to play it to give your the exact IA number.)

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Only the A1 gunship is scripted to fly anywhere. Hence the "navigate" command. The others were designed to have already landed when the script starts.

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OK. g1 and g2 appear to be otherwise inert; I've never had them directly attack me or my squad mates. I've run right past them many a time, but I don't think that I've stood around directly in front of either one for any length of time. Maybe I'll try to see if they wake up and take me out.

From my viewpoint, that's certainly better than IA0201 and IA0202 where there are a couple of gunships that are more than happy to say hello. I don't see any way that you can make it to the extraction point and live to tell about it. Maybe with a PSU and a small mountain of batteries.

Getting off the base in those scenarios is another story, since the nearby DJP works just fine. There's a chance both gunships will launch immediately and the second one almost always decides that I'm what's for dinner. If that doesn't happen, I can DJP out to Alpha and pop back in when Steve shows up. I haven't lived long after that due to some aircraft deciding that I was worth a missile or two.

IA0203 is certainly worth playing; it isn't a sure shot to live through it, but it is winnable. It's fun to order Brad (who has 2 rocket launchers) to take out specific flying aircraft. (Giving him the "attack all enemy aircraft" command doesn't do a whole lot, other than put him into CAP mode.) He's able to get two missiles to lock on and off at a time, which beats my normal anti-aircraft missile launching skills by two. I can never maintain a lock long enough to fire.

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