BCM5 - Spiral path megabattle
(2:28) Level 5 ('Assault on the Control Room') on Heroic. This shows a spiral path megabattle against 52 covies, using the path base defence plan, mostly using a rocket launcher and pistol - a great combo here. I'm using a save created specially for that defence plan, insofar as I've remained in my Banshee after killing the Hunters, so I can fly off to the base of the spiral path right away.
Released November 27th 2009, gameplay recorded November 18th 2009.
00:02 Full speed ahead as I cruise forth and arc around the ice path, skimming low over my advancing Marines. It's actually rather good fun to skim over them like that. I like seeing how low I can get without actually killing anyone, heh heh. Sort a wake-up call for them. The cyborg is here - better keep your heads down! Just as I dismount and let the Banshee slide clear, an Aussie Marine raises the alarm - as if we needed telling. "Crikey. Look sharp boys, enemy dropship inbound, let's move!". I watch the dropship majestically glide in overhead - which is just for the sake of the movie. A gorgeous sight isn't it? The sniper has already started firing wildly (calm down buddy!), and I settle my rocket sight on the top of the cliff. Whooosh! Off goes a rocket and it slams into the edge, ruffling a few alien feathers. Yeah, that's just for openers you stinkin' covie ratbags! I hear one Elite growling; you can bet he'll be out for blood now.
00:18 Slamming rockets up into the cliff is such great fun but there's only time for the one slam today; Elites are heading down the path fast and I turn to give them my attention. An incoming blue goes flying from my second rocket, and the following red gets similar treatment. Meanwhile my Marines are busy shooting one another in the back. Takes real skill that! Count how many times that guy says "Orrrh!" in protest. I'm pretty sure that's just from friendly fire. Flippin' idiots!
00:27 More Elites are charging down, and I switch to the pistol to give them pause for thought. Pepper them with fire and they'll tend to hold their ground for a while, letting you work on them further. A very useful tactic! I lob a plasma after just a few shots, and a Marine adds a frag: "Fire in the hole!". My sniper goes down from plasma fire, an early casualty. That's pretty unusual for a sniper; they tend to survive longer than their buddies. One of the Elites keeps on coming and I'm pretty sure that's the guy in rage mode from my rocket slam, because he goes down with just one pistol round. Switching back to the launcher, I'm ready with a rocket in case the Elites move clear of the grenades, but the rocket isn't needed. My plasma goes off just before the frag and takes out the two pausing Elites - though the frag helps one fly a bit further! I switch back to the launcher, spotting a good target: another incoming Elite, with a few minors nearby. BLAM! Nice shot, if I do say so myself.
00:42 Meanwhile a nasty red Elite has dropped in uninvited. Elites often end up falling down into that inner area, either through clumsiness or leaping clear of grenades. It's something you really have to watch out for because they can be a real pain if you're caught unawares. This guy I'm ready for; I reloaded my launcher specially and I blast him off his feet, ha ha! That's what you should do with uninvited covie guests. Turning back to the path, there's another incoming red, but he gets some rockety treatment too. I do a quick reload then throw a frag in front of some advancing minors. Meanwhile the Aussie Marine actually manages to finish off a Grunt who got past my defence. Nice work fella - there could be a medal in this for you! My frag finally goes off and sends a Grunt and Jackal flying, though not before the Grunt lobbed a plasma. Seeing another Elite coming into view, I follow up with a rocket and he goes flying, along with assorted minors. I really enjoyed that one!
00:55 The covie flood continues and I let fly with another glorious rocket. Even before it hits, I've thrown a frag to take out the Jackal before he gets down to the Marines. Frags are great for taking out the minor enemies fast like that. No good leaving the Marines to deal with 'em; they'll usually take forever to actually put anyone down. You really want them focused on the higher area of the path, partly to help take some of the covie attention. With a launcher reload completed, I lob a frag further up the path - it does a good job of things moments later - and I switch to the pistol, doing some fairly nice work including taking down a Grunt before he manages to get his grenade off. The Aussie is on a bit of a roll too, successfully fragging a Grunt! Spotting a glut of enemies forming up the path, it's back to the launcher for another highly satisfying rocket, which takes out two Elites plus assorted minor riff-raff. That's what you want for your rockets of course; as many enemies in the blast radius as possible. I add a frag in case further enemies are heading down, but it turns out to be redundant. But that's my only wasted grenade so far, so I'm not doing too badly. I use my last rocket on a Jackal that got near the bottom of the path.
01:19 We're not quite done with the path yet. A Jackal seems to've got a nice firing barrage going from higher up, and it sounds like he's been slaughtering a hapless Marine who's now on death's door: "You're all gonna die!". I head up the path, swapping the empty launcher for a plasma rifle on the way, and pump some hot plasma into the beaky fellow's side, giving the Marine some blissful relief. Threat eliminated. Can we have a breather now? Time for tea and biscuits perhaps? Nah, let's keep going - I'm having fun!
01:27 Just before the enemies under the tree come into view, I lob a plasma. I like to lob one or two like that to give them something to worry about and maybe take them by surprise. Sometimes they get blasted, and one time I was lucky enough to tag an Elite on the head, ha ha. This grenade makes the Elite dive clear, and meanwhile I open up with the plasma rifle. I could've stayed back at a safe distance and used the pistol of course, but today I thought I'd just plow in with the plasma rifle. I take out the Grunt on the right, while another gets blasted by the grenade. Silly fool - didn't he see it fizzing? More plasma fire takes out the third and final Grunt, but I have a bit of an overheat. Darn, I generally try to avoid that! This Elite is only a blue though, so I'm not too concerned about the pause. Moments later I take him close to death, and just as he growls in rage he's hilariously blasted into oblivion by an incoming Hunter shot. Fabulous!
01:44 But then like an idiot I waltz into a follow-up shot, and things aren't quite so fabulous any more! At least the two Jackals are panicking rather than hurting me with a plasma barrage - which they're plenty capable of. I take down one and attempt a bit of tagging mischief with the second - somewhat foolhardy as I'm down to two health bars with my shield down - but I fluff it. He rolls back towards it though, and the blast sends him flying. Meanwhile I hear a Hunter coming in from the side; I play with headphones on which gives me a great sense of directionality and all-round awareness. I backstep to get clear, and take him down with a pistol shot after his swipe misses.
01:55 I can hear the other Hunter being preoccupied with my Marines and I figure they could do with the exercise, so I turn my attention to the four grunty assailants at the pass exit. A pistol shot stuns a first Grunt who had the nerve to try and needle me, and I instantly follow with a plasma grenade, tagging him nicely. You don't see it at first, but you can hear his reaction, yes? Hee hee! Coming around the Jackal rock I give Grunt number two an opening dash of plasma, and he briefly tries to summarize the situation with "He's gonna kill us all!", but I silence him with a satisfying whack to the head before he can get the last word out. He was certainly a perceptive fellow though eh? I'm on a roll now, and Grunt number three gets the same 'stun and whack' treatment, while Grunt number one is finally put out of his misery by the delayed plasma blast. Turning to find number four, I do a stun and tag, and he gets launched pleasingly high for just a single grenade. I can't resist it; I whip out my pistol and take a few potshots at him, scoring a hit with my second round.
02:12 But hey, wasn't there something else I needed to take care of? Oh yeah, that Hunter. He's been busy knocking seven bells out of my Marines, and just as I unzoom my pistol he's missing a swipe at the last one still standing - who seemed more interested in that airborne Grunt. I take the opportunity with a pistol shot, and down he goes. That Marine's had about enough though: "I need a medic!".
Closing remarks The path base defence was the natural choice of defence plan for my first spiral path megabattle movie. For one thing, the main attack actually takes place on the path itself, and it tends to be quite unrelenting, giving you a good sense of the sort of onslaught you can face. For another, it's absolutely great for having fun with rockets! Heck, you can even arrange to have a spare launcher on hand, though I didn't do that for this particular save. I deliberately used just a straightforward save, no frills, to show you the basics of what's on offer if you care to set things up for yourself - which isn't hard. In this particular play I managed a good load of satisfying rocket blasts, along with some good grenade use on the path. Some decent pistol work too, in making enemies pause and in taking them down. I did a load of plays for this movie, but one of the things that made me choose this one was the Elite getting hilariously blasted by a Hunter, up top by the tree. I do like a bit of friendly fire in the covie ranks! Also I liked the ending with the four Grunts at the pass, followed by that Hunter giving me an easy final shot.