I won't be clicking another Defend the Base mission again

I won't be clicking another Defend the Base mission again

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Harmon Ward

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Jun 5, 2020
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Plus I'm playing BT Revised, which makes vehicles much tougher and changes the Withdrawal system so that you have to actually retreat to an extraction point.
Well, yes, that would make a gigantic difference in the Mission and your potential for disaster.
 

Harmon Ward

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Base Defense is pretty easy because as often as not nobody is shooting at you.
Once you hit the OP4 mechs they most definitely hit you back. In the 3 Skull and up missions you are outnumbered 3 - 1 and surrounded. The only time they are easy for me is when I get some lucky shots early on that trim their numbers. I all other cases my mechs get beat up a lot. I tend to use the buildings as armor by sacrificing a few when the going get tough. On those days I let the CPLT-C4 hit the buildings instead of my mechs.
 
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Jade_Rook

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Defend base missions are about balancing aggro. By default, enemies will ignore you and focus the buildings. If you tap them, they will focus your mechs for 2 rounds before switching back to the buildings. The balance is knowing how much the buildings can take while not getting too many enemies shooting at your mechs. Drawing fire from all enemy mechs actually is not the best option. If the enemies don't have LOS on the buildings, a Catapult at the back of their formation is actually better left alone. It can't fire on the buildings and will ignore you, even if you are taking out all of its spotters. The Hunchback running up isn't a problem until it gets in range. You can selectively target enemies, dropping them one at a time. This works up until the enemies get in range of the base. Then you need to worry about drawing fire to save buildings. It can be tough intercepting enemies far enough from the base to really take advantage of this, especially with the second and third lances showing up 2 or 3 turns after the mission begins and usually from opposite sides.
 
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Harmon Ward

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It can be tough intercepting enemies far enough from the base to really take advantage of this, especially with the second and third lances showing up 2 or 3 turns after the mission begins and usually from opposite sides.
Exactly.
If none of the missions were dangerous, the game would not be fun.
 
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Kovax

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I did a Defend Base mission last night, a one skull mission, before beginning the Reconquest. The OPFOR was supposed to have an Assault 'Mech. The Assault turned out to be escorted by a lance of Lights. That upped the ante considerably. Then the announcement came that there was another large energy signature: a second Assault. I went out after the Lights, which were focused on the base instead of my 'Mechs, and took them out one at a time with minimal damage in return. The first Assault came from a different direction, and I was hard-pressed to get there, distract it, and put it down, by which time the second Assault showed up and hit the base for one turn, leaving one building on the brink of collapse. I had already sent my speedster out to engage it, and the JR successfully evaded most of the return fire until I could finish off the first Assault. After that it was 4:1 odds in my favor.

PAINFUL, getting hit by a Gauss Rifle while engaging it with 2 Mediums (GRF, VND), one Heavy (QKD), and one Light (JR), 190 tons of total drop weight. My one Medium lost body parts, but I completed the mission with no buildings destroyed. Salvage wasn't "bad", but only one part was left from each Assault. Not sure I want to do that again.
 

Harmon Ward

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I just finished a 2.5 Skull "defend Base". Three full Heavy/Medium/Light lances came at me from 3 different directions. My Missile Boat, a converted Kintaro, was savaged. My Marauder had armor penetrations in 3 places. It was a 5/23 salvage Mission so I picked up 4 Salvaged Mechs.
In this mission I did a couple of things to deal with the enemy tactics. My Missile Boat moved away from the Vanguard as they approached. This put it in good position to ambush the next wave, hit them and retreat. The enemy force included a Crab. I intentionally did not hit that one. It has no indirect fire capability, so it had to crawl up to the mountain top to do any damage. It spent 4 turns just climbing instead of targeting my mechs. I basically used the buildings as extra armor. We lost two buildings which cost us a bonus, but the repairs only took 5 days.
 
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Panzer-Killer

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I did a Defend Base mission last night, a one skull mission, before beginning the Reconquest. The OPFOR was supposed to have an Assault 'Mech. The Assault turned out to be escorted by a lance of Lights. That upped the ante considerably. Then the announcement came that there was another large energy signature: a second Assault. I went out after the Lights, which were focused on the base instead of my 'Mechs, and took them out one at a time with minimal damage in return. The first Assault came from a different direction, and I was hard-pressed to get there, distract it, and put it down, by which time the second Assault showed up and hit the base for one turn, leaving one building on the brink of collapse. I had already sent my speedster out to engage it, and the JR successfully evaded most of the return fire until I could finish off the first Assault. After that it was 4:1 odds in my favor.

PAINFUL, getting hit by a Gauss Rifle while engaging it with 2 Mediums (GRF, VND), one Heavy (QKD), and one Light (JR), 190 tons of total drop weight. My one Medium lost body parts, but I completed the mission with no buildings destroyed. Salvage wasn't "bad", but only one part was left from each Assault. Not sure I want to do that again.
Do you mean one of your lance's Battlemechs got hit by an OpFor Gauss Rifle? And are you playing a vanilla or a modded game? If your answer is "yes" and you're actually playing a vanilla game, then that's absolutely weird and very possibly a bug, as absolutely NO OpFor is armed with Gauss Rifles apart from a single Battlemech in a very specific and unique Flashpoint scenario.
 
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Kovax

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Do you mean one of your lance's Battlemechs got hit by an OpFor Gauss Rifle? And are you playing a vanilla or a modded game? If your answer is "yes" and you're actually playing a vanilla game, then that's absolutely weird and very possibly a bug, as absolutely NO OpFor is armed with Gauss Rifles apart from a single Battlemech in a very specific and unique Flashpoint scenario.
Not positive that it was a GR being fired, but it was a Highlander shooting something heavy at my stuff, and it did some serious damage when it hit: one high-damage shot followed by really heavy missile spam. I'm playing the base game, no DLC, no mods.
 

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Not positive that it was a GR being fired, but it was a Highlander shooting something heavy at my stuff, and it did some serious damage when it hit: one high-damage shot followed by really heavy missile spam. I'm playing the base game, no DLC, no mods.
That means, then, that such an OpFor Highlander shot you with either a Particle Projection Cannon, shortened in PCC (if it looked like a blue lightning and also affected your Mech with an Accuracy debuff too) or with an Auto Cannon 10 shortened in AC/10 (if it looked like a normal ballistic gun shot), in either case supplemented by a 20-strong missile volley from its Long Range Missiles 20 launcer (i.e. LRM-20).

Either way, this is surely without doubt what is usually called a "warm reception"! ;)
 
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Kovax

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I'm guessing that it was an AC/10 then, because it didn't look like the normal PPC visual effect. At any rate, it hurt. The BNC that the mission initially threw at me was a lot easier and less painful (as long as I stayed out of physical attack range), since the main variant of that 'Mech is rather under-gunned. The Highlander certainly wasn't. Two Assaults in a one-skill mission was a bit more than I expected, particularly when there was also a full lance of Lights thrown in for good measure. Good thing that my lance was mostly very mobile and able to keep those evasion chevrons up, otherwise I'd have lost a couple of 'Mechs.

I'm hesitant to take another Defend Base mission until my own force is a bit more capable.
 

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Always right click Opfor Mechs and vehicles to see how they're armed and their armor status.
 

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I'm hesitant to take another Defend Base mission until my own force is a bit more capable.
Why are you hesitant? You completed the mission and even got the full bonus. It sounds like it was pretty easy, TBH, although I think you missed a golden opportunity. The campaign/career is a marathon, not a sprint, so it's important to think about how the outcome of a mission will affect your company in the long term. If you're not millimeters from bankruptcy then salvaging a 95 ton monster that early in the game is going to have a much bigger impact on your future prospects than getting the bonus for saving all the buildings.

If I'd gotten the mission you just described I'd have immediately switched my plan from protecting the buildings to using them as extra armor while I killed the light lance and the Banshee - forget the bonus and just save enough buildings to win the mission. While doing that I'd also toss some LRMs at the Highlander in hopes of getting a lucky heat hit without doing too much damage. By the time I killed everything else I'd probably have banked enough morale to take 3 precision shots at the Highlander's head, which I'd give to my best gunner while everyone else just kept up their evasion. If that didn't work I'd switch to melee and hope to wreck a leg and get a knockdown for some more called shots. Worst case I'd try to take both legs and get 2 salvage pieces. If I lost a mech in the process I could live with that - a Highlander is a major prize and even if you just get 2 pieces it sets you up to buy the third piece and complete the mech (assuming that you're playing three part chassis).

Edit: It occurred to me that you might have negotiated for the full payoff, rather than going for salvage. In that instance I guess the goal would always be to get the full bonus. That said, IMHO if you're playing with default difficulty (3 part chassis, rare salvage available, and salvaged mechs come with full load outs) then you're pretty much always best off going for full salvage and selling mechs and common salvage for income. You make plenty of cash and you never miss a shot at salvaging a surprise early heavy or assault.
 
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Icewraith

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Why are you hesitant? You completed the mission and even got the full bonus. It sounds like it was pretty easy, TBH, although I think you missed a golden opportunity. The campaign/career is a marathon, not a sprint, so it's important to think about how the outcome of a mission will affect your company in the long term. If you're not millimeters from bankruptcy then salvaging a 95 ton monster that early in the game is going to have a much bigger impact on your future prospects than getting the bonus for saving all the buildings.

If I'd gotten the mission you just described I'd have immediately switched my plan from protecting the buildings to using them as extra armor while I killed the light lance and the Banshee - forget the bonus and just save enough buildings to win the mission. While doing that I'd also toss some LRMs at the Highlander in hopes of getting a lucky heat hit without doing too much damage. By the time I killed everything else I'd probably have banked enough morale to take 3 precision shots at the Highlander's head, which I'd give to my best gunner while everyone else just kept up their evasion. If that didn't work I'd switch to melee and hope to wreck a leg and get a knockdown for some more called shots. Worst case I'd try to take both legs and get 2 salvage pieces. If I lost a mech in the process I could live with that - a Highlander is a major prize and even if you just get 2 pieces it sets you up to buy the third piece and complete the mech (assuming that you're playing three part chassis).

Edit: It occurred to me that you might have negotiated for the full payoff, rather than going for salvage. In that instance I guess the goal would always be to get the full bonus. That said, IMHO if you're playing with default difficulty (3 part chassis, rare salvage available, and salvaged mechs come with full load outs) then you're pretty much always best off going for full salvage and selling mechs and common salvage for income. You make plenty of cash and you never miss a shot at salvaging a surprise early heavy or assault.
Certain Highlanders also carry ammunition in either their SRM arm or leg IIRC, so they can be easier to salvage than other assaults. Popping the ammo is an extra pilot damage even if your pilots aren’t skilled enough to score headshots reliably.
 

Kovax

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The payoff was set for one choice of parts, so I wasn't going to get a full Assault 'Mech out of it anyway. As I said, I'm hesitant to do that again, at least until I've got a force that can handle it and make called shots with some hope of hitting. I was fortunate enough to get 2 parts of a QKD on an earlier contract, and bought the third part, so I had one fast Heavy to work with, the rest were Mediums and a Light. Taking on 2 Assaults plus a lance of Lights was a bit much at that point, even if they weren't shooting at me, and afterwards I needed about 2 months of down time while my heaviest 2 'Mechs got replacement sections and my second-best pilot recovered from 2 pilot hits.

Since then, I've added a Marauder and a Catapult, and just took out the "smuggling" Dropship in the campaign (managing to string out the opponents with a fighting retreat, and take them on one or two at a time). THAT was a brutal fight, and this time I had one pilot incapacitated (but survived) and another with a single hit, the QKD lost a side torso and arm, and the Catapult lost its CT, which in the TT game would have resulted in an unrepairable wreck reduced to spare parts. I was essentially reduced to fielding a pair of Mediums and a pair of Lights, and one of the replacement pilots was barely above a rookie, until the repairs and medical treatment were completed.

I notice that taking a leg off an opposing 'Mech causes a knockdown, but oddly doesn't reduce its movement very much on subsequent turns; in the TT game, it would be reduced to a mere 1 movement point per turn (hopping, or dragging a wrecked leg behind) IF the pilot managed to pass a very difficult piloting check (automatic success in this game), and then suffer a HUGE penalty on any future piloting checks. Damage in this game really doesn't seem to matter much, until something is totally destroyed, while in the TT game, performance degrades significantly with such critical hits.
 

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The payoff was set for one choice of parts, so I wasn't going to get a full Assault 'Mech out of it anyway. As I said, I'm hesitant to do that again, at least until I've got a force that can handle it and make called shots with some hope of hitting. I was fortunate enough to get 2 parts of a QKD on an earlier contract, and bought the third part, so I had one fast Heavy to work with, the rest were Mediums and a Light. Taking on 2 Assaults plus a lance of Lights was a bit much at that point, even if they weren't shooting at me, and afterwards I needed about 2 months of down time while my heaviest 2 'Mechs got replacement sections and my second-best pilot recovered from 2 pilot hits.

Since then, I've added a Marauder and a Catapult, and just took out the "smuggling" Dropship in the campaign (managing to string out the opponents with a fighting retreat, and take them on one or two at a time). THAT was a brutal fight, and this time I had one pilot incapacitated (but survived) and another with a single hit, the QKD lost a side torso and arm, and the Catapult lost its CT, which in the TT game would have resulted in an unrepairable wreck reduced to spare parts. I was essentially reduced to fielding a pair of Mediums and a pair of Lights, and one of the replacement pilots was barely above a rookie, until the repairs and medical treatment were completed.

I notice that taking a leg off an opposing 'Mech causes a knockdown, but oddly doesn't reduce its movement very much on subsequent turns; in the TT game, it would be reduced to a mere 1 movement point per turn (hopping, or dragging a wrecked leg behind) IF the pilot managed to pass a very difficult piloting check (automatic success in this game), and then suffer a HUGE penalty on any future piloting checks. Damage in this game really doesn't seem to matter much, until something is totally destroyed, while in the TT game, performance degrades significantly with such critical hits.
IIRC back in beta losing a leg was way more punishing regarding movement capability.
I recall that I just used JJs if I lost a leg though.
It was way more punishing to light mechs that didn't have JJs than to heavier mechs.

They opted to ease up how very quicky degradation occurred and snowballed on a couple fronts before release.
 
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The payoff was set for one choice of parts, so I wasn't going to get a full Assault 'Mech out of it anyway. As I said, I'm hesitant to do that again, at least until I've got a force that can handle it and make called shots with some hope of hitting. I was fortunate enough to get 2 parts of a QKD on an earlier contract, and bought the third part, so I had one fast Heavy to work with, the rest were Mediums and a Light. Taking on 2 Assaults plus a lance of Lights was a bit much at that point, even if they weren't shooting at me, and afterwards I needed about 2 months of down time while my heaviest 2 'Mechs got replacement sections and my second-best pilot recovered from 2 pilot hits.

Since then, I've added a Marauder and a Catapult, and just took out the "smuggling" Dropship in the campaign (managing to string out the opponents with a fighting retreat, and take them on one or two at a time). THAT was a brutal fight, and this time I had one pilot incapacitated (but survived) and another with a single hit, the QKD lost a side torso and arm, and the Catapult lost its CT, which in the TT game would have resulted in an unrepairable wreck reduced to spare parts. I was essentially reduced to fielding a pair of Mediums and a pair of Lights, and one of the replacement pilots was barely above a rookie, until the repairs and medical treatment were completed.

I notice that taking a leg off an opposing 'Mech causes a knockdown, but oddly doesn't reduce its movement very much on subsequent turns; in the TT game, it would be reduced to a mere 1 movement point per turn (hopping, or dragging a wrecked leg behind) IF the pilot managed to pass a very difficult piloting check (automatic success in this game), and then suffer a HUGE penalty on any future piloting checks. Damage in this game really doesn't seem to matter much, until something is totally destroyed, while in the TT game, performance degrades significantly with such critical hits.
Please be aware that the Defend Base you referred to is not a standard Defend Base Mission, BUT a special one named "Clash of Titans", with the two assault being in very dis-repaired conditions so that they only have 25% of their standard armor, which will tend to battle against one another. Therefore, if you stay out of their way you should be harm-free and also be able to snipe at them at the same time after they have engaged one another.

Moreover, I'd never risk any of my Mechs to get the "keep all building intact" bonus, as the OpFor usually manage to take down at least a building in every Defend Base contract I take, but would rather focus on taking down the whole OpFor. But then, again, I always negotiate my contracts for maximum salvage.

Finally, IIRC loosing a leg does indeed quite hamper that Mech, as it won't be able to sprint and also apparently move about half, or less than half of their walking speed.
I know for sure that whenever one of my Mech loses a leg I always eject their pilot in order to not loose the whole Mech soon afterwards... and any OpFor limping Mech seems to me quite slow compared to their healthy brethren. That seems right to me, but I've never played the TT game, so...

One thing worth considering, though, is that videogames are very different from tabletop games, more immersive and with a quite faster playing pace, and this game was not intended to be released for a comparatively small number of Battletech grognards fans, but to appeal to a potentially far larger player base - so maybe such kind of changes from the actual TT game were purposely chosen in order to mitigate the TT features that other videogame players won't understand nor appreciate.
 
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Jade_Rook

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Clash of Titans is a battle mission. There is a different mission that guarantees assault mechs attacking in a base defense. I think it is called Titan Attack or something similar. It does not involve multiple factions, so they will all be shooting at the player, but they are often in disrepair.

Losing a leg does remove the sprint option and slightly reduces move speed, but it isn't nearly as substantial as it is in TT. I assume that is because of how harsh the penalty would be for players. Imagine having to limp a mechs to an evac point with the crippling tabletop penalties.
 
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Kovax

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Please be aware that the Defend Base you referred to is not a standard Defend Base Mission, BUT a special one named "Clash of Titans", with the two assault being in very dis-repaired conditions so that they only have 25% of their standard armor, which will tend to battle against one another. Therefore, if you stay out of their way you should be harm-free and also be able to snipe at them at the same time after they have engaged one another.
As pointed out by another poster, it was not "Clash of Titans" (I just happen to have done that mission last night, and took only trivial armor damage against what was left of a KGC and ZEU plus their respective escorts), but a "Defend" mission against two Assaults on the same opposing side, intent on destroying the base you're tasked with protecting. If I ever do that again, I'll maximize salvage, but at the time I was trying to bring my faction reputation from Indifferent to Like, and that offered enough points with a bit to spare for a point of salvage. It's my first campaign, so I'm learning as I go, VERY different from the TT game in spite of using the same 'Mechs and weapons.
 

Icewraith

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For “Titan Attack”, don’t get the assault mech’s attention until you’re in a position to shoot off most of its weapons, and make sure you’ve got your evasion high, just in case. Also, it can be tempting to try and salvage the lighter designs that attack at mission start, but your real goal is to kill those quickly so you don’t have to deal with them when the assault mechs show up.

This is typically true of defend base missions, but there’s a particularly hard one featuring a desert base with no turrets in a valley with bluffs right behind the base.

The starting enemy lance attacks from the front, with a lobe mech approaching through a nearby canyon that mostly blocks LOS. If you over-commit to fighting this lance or try to salvage it, you’ll have a difficult time dealing with the lances that drop behind and to the side of the base later.

Getting the attention of the back-attacking lance is complicated by the bluffs behind the base. Best I’ve been able to do is park a Rifleman back there to snipe, but it usually ends up losing a side torso to return fire since there’s no cover.

Whenever I see that map, I know I’m going to have a rough time.
 
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Jamey

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VERY different from the TT game in spite of using the same 'Mechs and weapons.
It is intentionally different to make for a better single player video game experience. Overall, I like the changes a lot. The game flows much better than a straight TT implementation would.

That said, definitely take your time and learn the differences. :)
 
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