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War of Nations Tips Part 2 – Arms Race

By the third day of your immunity, you should have a thriving economy producing reasonable amount of money, oil, and iron per hour. It is time to start putting up refineries, upgrade them, and pump up your army before your immunity ends.

I hope you have researched Helicopters, and better yet, the Rocket Trucks. Rocket Trucks are the advanced version of the tanks, they have the same range, and with more potent damage and better health. Your main force should at least comprises the Tanks and Helicopters, with some Jeeps, and some advanced units such as Rocket Trucks, or even Mechs.

It is better to station troops in only a few outposts and not all of them, mainly because your do not have good commanders to defend them yet, and also, your units are still weak, thus it is better to group them in bigger quantity in a few key outposts which are centrally located and they can reinforce other outposts easily if need be.

If you are one who try to avoid fight and conserve units like me, place the majority of units especially the good units in your home base. Players prefer to attack the Outposts’ Command Centers, because the battle will involve all units, it is either you win or you die. This way they can gain tremendous amount of Attack Points instantly rather than to run many trips to your home base, fighting the units little by little. Unless you somehow antagonized a player or in the wrong clan, it is seldom that your enemies would want to wipe your home base especially if you are lower level — not because they have mercy on you, but because it is not efficient and profitable for them to do so.

Please do not think 3000+ units is a lot and stop training units after you have reached the quantity. The sad fact is that, there are many sadistic players who are running around with 20,000 units destroying other players. Keep training, there are no useless units in this game (erm, well, maybe except Archinid), it is just how you utilize them.

Later part of the game, you will find that the game is just about training units and balancing the fuel consumption. Well, this is another topic which I shall not confuse you now.

Links to other tips:

  1. War of Nations Tips Part 1 – Setting up and Joining an Alliance
  2. War of Nations Tips Part 3 – Survival

War of Nations Tips Part 1 – Setting up and Joining an Alliance

This is just a general guide written a few years ago. The game might have changed quite a fair bit and these strategies might not apply anymore. I will keep this up for a while till end of the year before removing the blog entirely.

So you are in this new world of War of Nations, don’t jump into setting up your base yet!

1. Scouting the World

Hop around the different worlds, and check your starting position. If you find yourself in the middle of a ravaged world littered with decimated low level players’ bases around you, this might not be a good choice, chances are that there are sadistic bullies around who find joy in obliterating low level players. Look around, if there are many low level bases (level 15+ to 20+) in tact, great, you are in a relatively friendly neighborhood which will greatly enhance your chance of survival.

It is possible that the vultures are waiting for the players to grow before they attack in order to gain more Attack Points, but if they could allow you to raise pass level 20, and you follow my tips here, you just might survive.

In my case, my second start have me landed in a “friendly” neighborhood, where the high level players cultivated the new players for future milking. I was pretty safe throughout, and was scouted only once by a high level player when I was about level 20/21, he was probably checking whether I am ready for harvest. There wasn’t any attacks until I was in the late 20s, and now I am enduring at least 1 attack a day, which is not so bad…

If you are not sure, start in the latest servers (server with the biggest number), these are newer worlds where you might still have a good fighting chance.

2. Building Your Base

When you start the game in a new world, you will be given 5 days of immunity before the vultures are allowed to flock to you. Make very good use of these 5 days especially if you are starting in a matured world. It is best you make yourself comfortable, and have 2 to 3 undisturbed hours for the start because you want to build as much as possible. In the beginning, the upgrades only take seconds and minutes, so you want to achieve as much as possible within these few hours that you have.

Time management is key here, that is, plan all your building upgrades so that they are still working while you are away for real life or at sleep. For example, Command Center and Research Center upgrades will take longer time to upgrade, so I would leave it overnight or if it takes only a couple of hours, I will upgrade it and go to work, and check the game for awhile later.

After the initial start, you just need to check your game once in awhile and make sure they are working all time round, if you have gold, spend them during this phase and do not wait for the resources to accumulate and waste time.

Do not spend your resources in building many units now, unless you intend to build your outposts in deep area, we will start building the army only in day 3 of your immunity period or when you have overflowing resources.

The reason for this is simple, compounding interest. If you spend the resources in upgrading the buildings early, they will generate more resources for you and you can use these resources to further upgrade and in turn get more, got it? If you spent them on building army, you will be tight on resources and have to wait for them to accumulate, this is wastage of time, unless you have a lot of Gold to spend. In my case, I hardly spend any Gold at this stage.

A. Building Sequence and Planning

Just to let you know (in case you don’t) that you can build a total of 18 buildings in your home base excluding the Command Center, and you are given the factory free. So there are 17 spaces left.

Here’s the suggested building plan for the home base:

  • 2 Warehouses
  • 2 Oil Rigs
  • 3 Trading Centers
  • 2 Iron Mines
  • 3 Refineries
  • 1 Defense Grid
  • 1 Sensor Tower
  • 2 Factories
  • 1 Research Center

Build iron mines and oil dereks on patches with a resource on it, that is, oil or iron. Every home base is given 2 oil patches and 2 iron patches.You might be tempted to build another mine or oil derek on an empty patch, trust me, it is not worth it, you will demolish them later.

You can substitute some of the buildings such as a warehouse with another refinery and so on, it is entirely up to your own game play.

Leave the Sensor Tower and Defense Grid last just before your immunity ends. Since we are not building a big force now, so you can just build 1 Refinery for now, and warehouse is dependent on how fast you are accumulating resources. Just leave spaces for these buildings and do not build other buildings over them.

Upgrade the Oil Rigs, Trading Centers, Command Center and Iron Mines like mad. When you have some spare cash, you can start building your Research Center and start your researches, at least try to get to Tanks and Helicopters, ideally Rocket Trucks and beyond. Later in the game, your Research Center will also need to be in constant researching in order not to waste time. For now, it is ok to take it slightly slower. If you have Gold to spend, spend them on the researches.

B. Outpost Alpha

You can build your first outpost (Outpost Alpha) immediately and my advise is build it as soon as possible. Space it away from your home base, and make sure the hexagons do not overlap with your home base, Renegade Outposts, another player’s base, or trees. You want to get the maximum potential for this outpost and it will probably be your most important outpost because most buildings would be at advanced level in later stage.

Ideally, it should be built in area nearer to the center, at least in the level 60 renegade area (where you find level 4 to 8 renegade outposts) or deeper. Again, you will need time to scout for a suitable location, ie., no high level enemies nearby, and not near any other alliance clusters. Look for location with at least 2 or more resource patches, as you go deeper, the resource patches will yield better resources, so it is important that you have all your outposts as deep as you can defend. Because you do not have a big army and good commander now, building outposts in area deeper than 450 area (renegade outposts level 10 to 14) might be difficult.

Since it is a very important outpost, you do not want it to be too far from your home base so that you can defend it effectively. I would not build it near alliance members for now, unless you know them in real life, because you would never know when the member(s) might switch alliance or you might want to join a better one shortly, and this could spell trouble for you.

Defense grid in outpost is optional. If you intend to station troops especially long range units such as helicopters and artilleries in it, having a defense grid will give an advantage to them. Having said that, you can leave the Defense Grid to the last just before your immunity ends.

Every outposts should have a factory to train units for its own defense and/or support another outposts unless it is a specialized outposts, example, only refineries and warehouses which I strongly advise against, because a destruction of this outpost will destroy you too.

Build one of each resources here or compensate the resource that you did not build in your home base here, for example, if you have 4 Trading Centers and only 1 warehouse in home base, you might not want to build anymore Trading Centers here.

Sensor Tower is an option, I do not usually build this in any of my outposts except the L34 outposts (that is another story).

Upgrade like mad as well.

B. Outpost Bravo

After establishing your Alpha, and when you are waiting for the upgrades to complete, attack the nearest level 2 Renegade Outpost to try gaining 5 Power Cells or use Gold to buy them, they are easy to get so save yourself some gold.

Once you have your 5 Power Cells, you can build your next outpost. The location selection process is similar to the Alpha, either near your friends or near your home base or outpost Alpha. A good strategy for building outposts is stretch them towards the center, and each outpost is about 30 minutes to an hour from the nearest so you can mobilize troops between them easily, but do not make them in a straight line, it is easy for enemies to trace all of your outposts.

C. Outpost Charlie and Beyond

This will be entirely up to your own game play like whether you want to locate it in your alliance cluster. I saw many players have 4 outposts near their home base, this could seriously impact their game play later, such as low resource, and be subjected to constant attacks from other players’ home base.

That’s all for now, I will talk more about joining an alliance and others, stay tuned.

You need an alliance to survive. If you are in an active alliance, the members could send you reinforcements to help defend your base and it might even deter other players from attacking you. So try your best to join an alliance before your immunity ends.

But which alliance to join? This is the question.

3. How to chose an alliance

The game is structured such that the alliance ranking is based on the total Attack Points of the members, so no top 50 alliances (even top 100) in a matured world will accept you when you start the game unless you know some of the leaders personally, so do not waste time sending a request to them.

Having said that, you do not just want to hop into any alliances that is recruiting in World Chat that says no Attacking Points (AP) requirements. Do some research first by checking the recruiter’s level, total members, and also the total attack points of the alliance. You can do this by clicking on “Ranking” and then select the alliance tab, while a player’s level and attack points could be check by clicking on their names in the World Chat.

Observe the World Chat for awhile, you might get lucky into joining one of the big alliance’s branch which they just setup and no need of Attack Points, it is rare, but I have seen it happened. I know the World Chat conversations do not make sense most of the time, and it is flooded by braggarts, but read them often to understand the general “political climate”– which alliances are teamed and which factions are warring.

You might not be able to join these top alliances now, but it is good information that will help you on your next move if you ever intend to.

Reading the World Chat also has another advantage, you do not want to hop into an alliance that is public enemy or is warring with a major faction.

In my case, I would prefer to look around the home base, and look for high level neighbors (20+ and above), check their alliances using the “Alliance Ranking”, if the alliance is not ranked in top 50 and with moderate Attack Points, apply to it. You can send requests to multiple alliances at the same time.

Having an alliance member next to you is killing 2 birds with 1 stone. First, you eliminate the possibility of that player attacking you, and secondly, you can help each other in defense and attacks. So scout around, and try applying to the alliances of your neighbor(s).

4. Is the alliance right for you?

After you are being accepted into an alliance, I would suggest you to stay low key (not posting a lot, and don’t even say “hi”), and do not change your user name to that of the alliance prefix first (you will soon learn which alliance a person belongs to by their name, eg., XXX_king, XXX_queen) Observe the alliance chat and message board to see how is it being operated. Is it run by some short sighted warmongering maniacs or is it run by a naive 13-year-old who thinks he could rule the world?

If you like them, fine. Else, you may leave the alliance quietly and no one will notice. Usually most alliances are fine with members leaving, but who knows what others are thinking, and you might be unfortunately being recruited by a egoistic leader who felt betrayed and decided to call for your annihilation? Thus stay low key, pretend to be a newbie, not knowing what to do and pretend that you have not read this guide; very importantly do not give out your coordinates, and change your user name. Changing name is a tedious process, you are allowed to change only once every 7 days, thus if you have changed your name to XXX_noob, you are stuck with it even if you have joined another.

If you like the alliance, then you can start participating actively in it.

3. Alliance Hopping

I am a loyal person, and this could be my downfall as my current alliance is led by a clueless leader, whom, even after playing for a long time, still does not know who rules that world, and thought he could conquer it, sigh. I am sort of like becoming an unpopular adviser who is always trying to explain the situation and stop him from crossing the top alliances.

Since this is a guide, I will share some thoughts on how to jump from one to another. Again, the choosing of alliance guide in point 1 applies. However, if you have chosen an alliance because of proximity of the members, you have to be a little more careful here because another member knows your base, thus you must join a stronger alliance in the neighborhood to protect yourself just in case.

You do not want to hop from one bad alliance to another, thus it is very important to identify some alliances that you would like to join and check out on their recruitment requirements. Work on your attack points slowly, and always read the World Chat and look out for opportunity. Do not leave your current alliance before you identified an alliance and is sure that you are qualified.

Alternatively, you could leave the alliance first if you have good attack points, and advertise yourself in the World Chat. It is an efficient way, and usually you would receive a few offers and you can choose from there.

In sum, alliance could give you some protection in the beginning, but it could also spell doom if you are not careful, personally, I think the most important part of joining alliance is to have fun, after all, this is only a game. If you are in one where most members are friendly and help each other, and you enjoy talking to them, I think you are a lucky person, it does not matter whether the alliance is in the top 10 or not.

Links to other topics:

  1. War of Nations Tips Part 2 – Arms Race
  2. War of Nations Tips Part 3 – Survival

The Amazing Drell Adept

Didn’t play Mass Effect 3 for a long time and picked the game up again about 3 to 4 weeks ago. Played mostly Silver games because you can hardly find players in ME3 public Bronze games anymore especially during week days in my time zone.

The few characters that I would usually bring to Silver games are the Human Engineer, who is an all rounder power house and provides great support to the team, or a Turian Sentinel, who is hardy and good with the guns. Occasionally, I would bring a Batarian Brawler Vanguard to Silver games, but he is a lot less useful in Silver due to stronger enemies– a wrong charge would get him killed.

Decided to give the fragile Drell Adept a try on Silver yesterday, expected to do badly, and get booted out by other team players in the next game.

We were in wave 10. The thing that I hated most in wave 10 of silver games is to complete an objective especially the hacking, very often, the team will get overwhelmed by the relentless waves of bosses. We got a pizza delivery objective here.

A player got the goods and the rest of the team escorted him back to the extraction zone. To our horror, the extraction zone was filled with enemies– the Atlas, Phantoms, and a whole crew of other lower ranked mooks. Needless to say the team got slaughtered, in the midst of the mess, someone did manage to get the goods to the extraction zone, but with the sacrifice of 2 players, either stomped to death by the Atlas or instant killed by Phantoms.

We were now down to a Qurian Infiltrator and my Drell Adept, could we complete the remaining task?

We were bombarded badly and I got myself killed when trying to revive the remaining partner, not giving up, both of us used the medi gel, unfortunately, due to the Qurian Infiltrator’s bad position, she went down again. Naturally, I tried to revive her but got hit badly as well, in a split second, I remember how most Sliver games ended badly– when one player fell, the rest of the team got mobbed trying to revive him/her in a bad situation. I decided to run away, re-group, hopefully she would do the same after using a medi-gel. But unfortunately, she didn’t manage to even after wasting another 2 or 3 medi-gels.

Oh my god, I am alone, and to make things worse, there is still an objective to complete. There were 2 Atlases, with a group of guardians. I was in despair, almost wanted to give up, but decided to die gloriously instead. So I ran towards the goods, picked the baggage up, good, the enemies were clustered together following me. Fired a few Reaves at them, and crawled towards the extraction zone. Just a few steps away from completing the objective, a few Guardians turned up at the corner and shot me to death.

Used another medi-gel, and ran the opposite direction, got ambushed by an Engineer, gosh, I had to take him down fast before he set up a turret to make my already miserable life worse.

I ran around to the other far end and waited for the enemies to come to me. Took down a couple of them, and dashed back to the goods, tada! A touch down! Reaved and threw all my grenades at the 2 Atlases and party, creating massive biotic explosions, not sure how many did I kill, because they were all hidden in smoke. I turned my back and pop an Ops Survival pack, but I am now out of grenades. Great, it would take me forever to get my inventory up. I was lost again, what am I going to do? There is still a possibility that both Atlases survived my grenades bombardment.

Thank my lucky star that, I remember reading from somewhere using the Ammo reload pack would replenish the grenades as well. Great, let’s give it a try, and true enough, I have 4 more grenades to play with.

I hid at a column and waited, wow, only one Atlas left, the rest of the enemies went down with my mad grenades rush to the smoke awhile ago. The lone Atlas didn’t survive the next wave of biotic explosions that I threw at it, and voila! Wave completed!

Looking back, I could have used the missile. But at the point of time, I was so nervous that I totally forgotten about the missiles that I have been carrying with me.

The Drell Adept’s Reave is very powerful. It won’t take out the enemy instantly, but will slowly chew their health away for the entire duration or could be used to set up gigantic biotic explosion with the Clustered Grenade. I was surprised when the I got the message that only one enemy was left because all the while I thought there were a few others scattered around the map which I didn’t kill. I only threw Reaves at them and ran away. These mooks were probably killed over the power duration. The other possibility is they were all killed in one big cluster when I set up multiple biotic explosions. They were hidden in smoke so I couldn’t count how many were there.

I thought for long how did my squishy Drell Adept survive while other stronger characters died in the game? One possible explanation is the Drell’s agility. I got a feeling that it runs faster (need to confirm this), in the game example, I could run out of a bad situation while the other survivor, Quarian Infiltrator could not despite using a few medi-gels. Same situation in the game where I first “solo” a wave in Bronze game, using Drell Adept as well, I could run out of the massacre while the rest couldn’t.

Though it is not the first time I “solo” a section of silver games, but doing this so “spectacularly” using a squishy Drell Adept is amazing. Drell Adept is definitely up in my permanent roster of characters for Silver games.

Good Games, Bad Games

I was on an extremely good run 2 weeks ago with some random players on Mass Effect 3 Multiplayer Silver games, clearing games after games until I gotta leave reluctantly to sleep. I think we played at least 8 to 9 games with only 1 failed mission at wave 10. Everyone just stuck together, while I stunned all the targets using Energy Drain for teammates’ easy sniping.

While I am not a good ME3 player and I might not be able to lift the team especially in Silver, but I think (I hope other players think that too), I am not a burden to the team. When teamed up with bad players, grrr… it would be real tough for me as I can only take care of myself in Silver.

I was with this group of players, where everyone would just run in different directions, needless to say, we did not manage to go past wave 7 or 8 in every games. Finally I decided to quit the group after 3 or 4 games.

There was also this random group that I joined, did not complete even the 3rd wave, odd enough, they kicked me out despite the fact that I was the 2nd highest scoring, so close to the top spot, perhaps it has something to do with my low N7 ranking…

The worst games that I have played so far? It gotta be a couple of bronze games 2 days ago with a rank 200+ N7 who was teaching his friend how to play ME3 multiplayer and both were talking on the mic throughout the games. His friend is new the MP which I can tell easily because his N7 rank is exact equal to his character’s level. I am fine and have patience for new players as I have been through the same, I even mentally prepare myself to stay close to this guy to assist/ revive him if need be, bronze is no longer a problem for my Female Infiltrator.

I do not know what the experienced friend is trying to teach his friend, both of them never took part in any escort process, in fact, any team objectives except the eliminating of the high profile enemy personnel. They were busy raking up kills, and exhausted their cobra missiles whenever a boss character appear . That’s fine too, if they could at least take care of themselves. But while me and the other player were escorting the drone, they HAVE.TO.DIE somewhere far. I screamed (glad I wasn’t on mic) when the other player ran away from the escort process trying to revive them, and got killed. So it was all me alone escorting the drone slowly, and ran to their rescue after that…

Hacking was again, me alone, the pair of friends never appear, they did not even bother to stick around nearby helping to take care of the enemies while I remained in the hacking circle. I have to fend for myself, running in and out of the circle, stopping the hack process in between. Finally the other player came, and we completed the hacking.

The pair constantly die together, which I thought is very strange, as the “teacher” friend is 200+ N7 rank (much higher than me), though the ranking doesn’t tell how good a player is, but at least is telling how experienced the player is. The final straw came in the 2nd game when I had to run from one end to another to revive them again for the umpteenth time, after reviving them, I saw what’s coming ahead, cloaked and ran ahead trying to shotgun the cannibals to death. As I sprinted forward, both of them fell again! I decided to take care of the cannibals before returning to them. Instead of saying thanks and waited for my return, both were whining and screaming at me, something like, “Where did she go?” “Hey Bitch! Someone is dying here, where are you?”

On the final wave, with less than 30 seconds to extraction, god, please forgive my vulgarities, the pair had to charge (one of them is a vanguard) outside the extraction zone, and got themselves killed. I think the other player shared the same sentiment as me, we decided to stay and waited for our extraction leaving them to be eaten by the cannibals.

Mission Impossible

I was in a Mass Effect 3 Bronze game using a level 14 Drell Adept, Firebase ??? (not sure of map name), with Geth as the enemies. I never thought Geth was difficult until I started playing other characters instead of my good old Salarian Engineer, and many Geth games (bronze) ended with failed mission.

So, in this game, all teammates were down in one cluster, bombarded by Geth Pyros and Rocket Troopers, and I was the only one that escaped the massacre barely. Unable to revive the teammates, I decided to run, and used a Ops Survival pack. I was caught in a situation I have never been to– Solo, and the burden of success or failure of the mission on my shoulder.

As I ran away, I was shot by the Geth to low health and running out of Ops Survival pack, I thought that’s it, the end of the mission. Knowing all the teammates are now looking at me playing, I just couldn’t die, be called a noob, and a laughing stock in the ME3 community. I took cover, fired a few shots back and reave like a madman. Ran, cover, in between performed a few flipping stuns, took out another Geth, and one by one, I finally did it! Wave completed. I never felt so relieved and proud of myself in a mission, and I just have to pat my own head after that.

I think I am finally getting somewhere in the ME3 multiplayer game–  at least I am not a burden to the team any more. I managed to even become the 2nd highest scoring member with my Salarian Engineer. Yay.