- HW CATACLYSM
- HOMEWORLD 2
As you may have noticed, during the installation HomeWorld requires a special code to be activated: I WON'T SEND THIS CODE TO ANYONE. And this, too: HomeWorld has NO codes, except the string options found in the next section. However, this always made the game unbearlably unstable to me. Use them as your own risk; I won't remburse any kind of damage, nor will Relic, Sierra or sites hosting this document will. You use those strings at your own risk. For race purposes, I consider as you are playing with Kushans. You'll always start with your MotherShip, 7 Scouts and one Resource Collector. The game has been finished in normal difficult.
MISSION 1: THE KHARAK SYSTEM
+ Harvest Resources
+ Build Primary Research Ship
+ Destroy the Drones Using a Formation
+ Destroy the Drones Using a Tactic
+ Capture the Drone with a Salvage Corvette
The MotherShip is ready. The whole Kushan race is awaiting its departure from the giant Scaffold orbiting around Kharak.
This mission is very simple. It will allow you to further improve your skills with the game. Simply do what the male voice orders you: immediately build a Research Ship and a Salvage Corvette; research Fighter Chassis and Corvette Drive in the Research Ship and have the Resource Collector harvest any possible resource. The Scout will have to destroy a group of 9 Drones first, using a Formation (go for the X or Claw one), then a group of 16 Drones with Tactics. Then use your Salvage Corvette to retrieve the single Drone. Build five Interceptors or retire all Scouts to build ten Interceptors; Resources will be too low for construction of other ships, so use them for fighters.
Once the Salvage Corvette has retrieved the Drone, the hyperspace module will be fully charged. Order your fleet to dock with the MotherShip and let the journey begin.
MISSION 2: OUTSKIRTS OF KHARAK SYSTEM
+ Send a Probe to Investigate
+ Protect the MotherShip
+ Salvage the Khar-Selim
+ Defend the Salvage Team
+ Defend MotherShip
+ Destroy Attacking Forces
The first hyperspace jump will bring you to the outskirts of the Kharak system, to rendez-vous with the support vessel Khar-Selim, which has passed the last ten years travelling on standard drives to tune your hyperdrive.
As the MotherShip will emerge from hypersapce, order your Collector to harvest resources. Fleet Comand will alert you that it is possible that the fleet mis-jumped and will start hailing the Khar-Selim on all frequencies. Sensors will pick up the ship's automated beacon.
Before sending a Probe, be sure to have at least two Resource Collectors and a strong group of Strike Crafts; as the Research Ship will be ready to begin development of Corvette Chassis and Heavy Corvette Upgrade, you'll may want to wait until at least 5 Heavy Corvettes are ready. Keep your ships near the MotherShip, and do not send any of them toward the Khar-Selim. Position at least 5 Interceptors on the left side of the MotherShip. Once you are ready, build a Probe and send it near the Khar-Selim.
From the wreckages of your suport vessel unknown enemy ships will emerge, and will start to fly toward your MotherShip.
Order your units to destroy all incoming enemy ships (8 Interceptors divided into two waves, the first composed of 2 fighters, 2 Corvettes and one Missile Corvette), then repair and substitute any ship needing it.
Fleet Comand will order you to direct a Salvage Corvette to the Khar-Selim to retrieve its flight recorder.
Place half of your Fighters between the MotherShip and the Khar-Selim, while the rest will remain with your MotherShip; a group of Corvettes will escort the Salvage Corvette to the Khar-Selim and back. Salvaging operations will take few seconds; after the Salvage Corvette has finished, other waves of enemies will try to destroy the Corvette. Have your forces fend off any attack; use your fighters to locate the enemy Carrier before the Salvage Corvette arrives at the MotherShip. From now on, Corvettes and Interceptors will defeat any Strike Craft coming from that Carrier while Scouts attack it; use evasive tactics to minimize losses.
After the Corvette has docked, the MotherShip will play the last entry from the flight recorder: before being destroyed, the Khar-Selim tried to broadcast an abort signal for your hyperdrive test, but it was too late.
Now you'll have to destroy the enemy fleet. Order your Corvettes to attack the enemy Carrier with the Interceptors, and have the Interceptors destroy any enemy Strike Craft. The Carrier will retreat soon. Call back all your forces, repair and refuel them, and if all resources on the map have been harvested, engage hyperspace for immediate return to Kharak. It is also reccomandable to have at least two Salvage Corvettes.
MISSION 3: RETURN TO KHARAK
+ Defend the Criotrays
+ Capture an Enemy Ship with 2 Salvage Corvettes
+ Salvage the Criotrays
Hostile units belonged to Corvette and Fighter classes. The MotherShip will return to Kharak to alert the planetary missile defense and for final touches to its systems.
Once the MotherShip emerges from the hyperspace, everyone sees a dreadful show: the scaffold and any other orbiting facility destroyed, and Kharak is being consumed by a firestorm. The only suriving structures are the cryotrais near you, and one of them is suffering a massive malfunction.
First, order your Collectors to harvest the few resources near the wreckages of the scaffold, and move the Salvage Corvette near the Criotrays. Form the usual Scout/Interceptor/Corvette groups and move them near the trays too.
The Criotrays are under attack by four ships, different from those you encountered at the Khar-Selim. Tactical suggests to capture at least one of those ships to know what happened.
To capture a single Frigate you'll need two Salvage Corvettes; I suggest not to try to simply order your Corvettes to move in and capture a ship or they will be destroyed at once; also, the game will not react well to any enemy ship you'll capture aside the first one, so capture just one (that's it only one Frigate in this mission until mission 8; read that mission for further informations). Order your Strike Crafts to attack the Assault Frigates: fighters are good to draw them away from the Criotrays while Corvettes fires from behind, below or from sides to maximize damage. Once three Frigates are down, order to dock to your fighting Corvettes and Interceptors and order your Scouts (or Interceptots if you don't have any) to engage the last Frigate while your Salvage Corvettes capture it; the best way to draw fire from the Corvettes is to use evasive tactic until the Corvettes are docked with the Frigate. Now dock all your fighters, replace any loss and have the Reasearch Ship study the Capital Ship Chassis technology and watch the recording of the captured ship.
!!!!!!!! BUG WARNING !!!!!!!! BUG WARNING !!!!!!!! BUG WARNING !!!!!!!!
Discovered a bug in this mission, in every version of the game. It is possible that the Criotrays will be under attack by only three ships, with one of them damaged. If this happens, and you are able to salvage all 6 Criotrays, the mission won't end as the game AI won't recognize the sixth Criotray as salvaged. Unfortunately, the only way I've found to eliminate this problem is to let the Taiidan ships destroy at least on e of the Criotryas, and then following with the mission.
!!!!!!!! BUG WARNING !!!!!!!! BUG WARNING !!!!!!!! BUG WARNING !!!!!!!!
Now use your Salvage Corvette to recover all surviving Criotrays (it is relatively easy to save them all); I suggest to issue the salvage order when the previous Cryotray is going to be "incorporated" into the MotherShip, or the queue will eventually screw up the game, obliging you to replay the mission. You should also have some spare resources; build a second Resource Collector and if you have something left at least one Assault Frigate; don't worry if you haven't any or enough, the next mission will allow you to increase your units' numbers and quality.
Once all Criotrays are secure, jump toward your next mission.
MISSION 4: THE GREAT WASTELANDS
+ Protect Fleet
+ Destroy the Enemy Carrier before It Leaves
+ Build and Position a Resource Controller
The commander of the captured enemy ship has revealed that the fleet which destroyed you planet was a frontier guard of a vast interstellar empire, and your race has violated a 4000 years old treaty forbidding to develop hyperspace drives. Before hunting down the remainings of the fleet, however, you'll have to refit and increase number of your fleet; course has been directed to a deep-space asteroid belt.
Begin to harvest resources; build a Resource Controller and move it near the Collectors to improve harvest productivity. Remember that you'll have to manually move the Controller near the Collectors everytime they move from a deposit to an other one, or it will be nearly useless. Resume procution of Assault Frigates; build at least two of them, and save all remaining resources for after.
Sensors will pick up a fast-moving MotherShip-class signal directed toward your MotherShip. Power reading are off the scale (It's manifestating! The Lance! Pull back the...ehm, sorry, wrong series...if you understood the joke, mail me, no prizes are awaiting you). The ship will stop in front of your MotherShip. As it didn't fired first, the ambassador will dock with the unknown ship to establish communications.
This ship belongs to the Bentusi, the Unbounds, interstellar traders; they ahve just delivered an Exchange Unit to the ambassador in a gest of good will; with this Exchange Unit you'll be able to buy new technologies exchanging them with harvested resources. The technology being offered is vital, the Ion Cannon (whenever you are playing as a Kushan or Taiidan, the Bentusi will offer this technlogy). As it costs only 500 RUs, buy it immediately. I think that the Bentusi will remaing there as long as you do not buy Ion Cannons, but I'm not sure. Tegger Better (email@example.com) says that if you are not quick in buying the technology, the Bentusi will leave.
As the Exchange has been concluded, the Bentusi will leave, telling you that everything that moves is easily eard in the void (everyone knows that everyone can ear your scream in space), and will alert you that the Turanic Raiders, serves of the Taiidans are coming and should not know that you have seen them.
Now that you have access to Ion technology, build at least four Ion Cannon Frigates and keep them all near your MotherShip, including the Assault Frigates. Move your Research Ship somewhere in front of the MotherShip and order your Salvage Corvettes to dock and keep them inside. Use your Strike Crafts to fend off any Turanic attack and try to locate the enemy Carrier: this time this Carrier mustn't run away, or will alert the Taiidan fleet you are seeking to destroy of your existence. Also, when located, the Carrier will call for reinforcements: two Ion Array Frigates will hyperspace near the Carrier itself and four other Frigates of the same type will jump near your MotherShip: recall your Strike Crafts and order your Frigates to destroy all enemies sorrounding the MotherShip.
Once they have been destroyed, direct all your forces against the enemy Carrier, which will constantly come toward the MotherShip to use its Ion Cannon. That Carrier MUST NOT escape. Have your Strike Crafts engage the Ion Array Frigates near it and have your Frigates fire on the Carrier.
As the Carrier collapses, replace any loss and be sure to harvest all resources in the map. If you can, build now two other Ion Frigates and retire any Scout and replace them with Interceptors or Heavy Corvettes.
Now prepare youself to face your first large-fleet combat!
MISSION 5: THE GREAT WASTELANDS
+ Investigate at the Asteroid Belt
+ Destroy all Enemy Vessels
+ Destroy Enemy Resource Collectors
The first hyperspace jump of your race had devastating effects: Kharak, the planet you thought was your homeworld is burining; the renmants of your race are sleeping, unaware of the situation and the MotherShip and its fleet is chased by two alien races; for now, however, there is one single objective: destroy the fleet that consumated your world.
As soon as you came out from hyperspace, begin to harvest the resource-rich asteroid belt and position your Frigates in front of the MotherShip. Position your fighters near the Frigates for cover and move the Corvettes in the right-most asteroid belt (with the MotherShip at the bottom of your Sensor Manager). Do not send Probes or other fighters to recon the center of the belt: your Resource Collectors will automatically reveal the ships an the Taiidans will start to move against you. Not sending a Probe immediately will also grant you few resources to increase your fleet and to research Plasma Bomb technology, that might be useful to produce cheap anti-Capital Ship fighters.
When Tactical will inform you that the ships are the ones which destroyed Kharak, begin to move your Frigates toward the center of the belt, with the fighters few meters behind. Order your Corvettes to move along the right asteroid belt, but do not engage them in direct combat until I told you so.
The Taiidan fleet is composed of 2 Ion Frigates, 6 Assault Frigates, a Support Frigate, a Carrier, Interceptors and Defenders; the latter class of ship is brand-new, and will be protecting the enemy Carrier; as soon you'll make contact with them, Tactical will inform you that engineers are ready to start to study the technology. The enemy fleet will also start to move toward the MotherShip, with the Destroyer as spearhead. Ion and Assault Frigates will be slightly below it, and the Support Frigate will remain with the Carrier.
Your Corvettes should have identified the enemy Resource Collectors: destroy them at once, then redirect the Corvettes into the main battle. Have them destroy the Defenders and any other unit around the enemy Carrier, and then harras it until your Frigates have finished with the enemy Capital Ships. I suggest to take out the Assault Frigates first, then concentrate on the Destroyer while your Fighters take out the Ion Frigates and enemy Interceptors.
Now that the enemy Capital Ships are down, take care of the Carrier and any renmanents of the Taiidan fleet.
Before hyperspacing, be sure to collect all resources and replace all your losses. Build 10 Attack Bombers, and be sure to have all your Strike Crafts locked in the MotherShip.
(note: I know, the best thing would be to capture the enemy Destroyer or at least the Frigates, if not even the Carrier; however, read mission 8 for a good reason to avoid this)
MISSION 6: DIAMOND SHOALS
+ Protect the Mothership
You have succesfully decripted the data from the captured Taiidan ship: it appears to be an Imperial broadcast, full of unknown words, sounds and mysterious outposts, but each one looks very frightening. To avoid them, the MotherShip will change its path and will pass through a Nebula, but before, through an asteroid field.
The objective of this mission is simple: destroy any asteroid that threats your MotherShip. The MotherShip itself can withstand few hits, but your Frigates will have to shoot down any incoming object. Note that resources will be available only when few asteroids have been destroyed, and if they impact with your Frigates, it is most likely that you'll lose them. Ion Cannon Frigates, with their firepower performs better than Assault Frigates in this job.
Once the first wave of asteroids have been eliminated, when you have a chance, release your Strike Crafts and help the Frigates in their job: the worst is yet to come. Super-Capital Ship Drive will become available after some minutes, and the help a Destroyer can give will prove valuable. Build two or three of them, but be sure to have at least 500 RUs in your stores.
After all asteroids are gone, the Bentusi will appear, offering you Drone Technology. This time you'll have a limited time to buy the Technology; if you wait too much, the Bentusi will leave; Drone technology is not vital, but you might want it for some reasons.
When the deal is done, Fleet Comand will ask help to the Bentusi for identifying the dangers in this region; the Bentusi don't ear nothing here, and even the Taiidans fear the Great Nebula. No one returns.
Once the Bentusi are gone, be sure to have a good Capital/Super-Capital Ship wing (let's say minimum two Destroyers and 9 combat Frigates of various type) and, above everything else, a strong Strike Craft wing, with Interceptors and Heavy Corvette as backbone. Be sure that they will automatically leave the MotherShip once out of hyperspace.
MISSION 7: THE GARDEN OF KADESH
+ Harvest Natural Resources
+ Defend Fleet
Secondary Obectives: + Protect Resource Collectors
The Bentusi said: "No one returns."
The Nebula is incredibly rich in energy and resources. Sensors have problems compensating the energy spikes, and need recalibration. Order your Collectors to harvest, but do not move the Controller. Have all non-combat ships docked (if they can) and move your Frigates in front of the MotherShip, and your Destroyers behind. Your Strike Crafts will be split between the sides of it.
A large sensor contact will move toward you; sensor instability makes difficult to identify. The ambassador will meet with an emissary of the unknown ship. This Nebula, as the emissary says, is the Garden of Kadesh, protected for 30 generations from the Unclean by these people; they ask the ambassador if you've come here to stay. As the ambassador apologizes for the intrusion, the emissary will sentence that everyone not willing to remain, will be destroyed. A large numbers of ships will come out from the alien ship, directed toward our MotherShip.
The enemy ships will attack your right flank first, so have your Strike Crafts fend off any attack while the Frigates attack the larger ships, the Fuel Pods, essentially Support Frigates. The enemy ship will start a flanking maneuver, trying to go in your rear spot. Ignore it for now. Fleet Comand will also begin to charge the hyperdrive; it will be ready in 8 minutes.
Continue to order your Strike Crafts to destroy the enemy fighters ad your Firgates to destroy all Fuel Pods (remeber, stay away from the enemy Carrier). Enemies will also start to attack your Resource Collectors. As soon as they came under attack, order them to dock with the MotherShip or the Resource Collector and move a group of Interceptors to guard them. Enemies will attack the Collectors even if they are near the MotherShip, so pay attention.
Scientists will be also able to research Fast-tracking Turrets to build Multi-Gun Corvettes, the best to deal with these swarms of light Fighters. Build at least 10 of those Corvettes.
Meanwhile, the enemy Carrier should have completed the flank maneuver: begin to move your Capital Ships behind the MotherShip, but do not attack it. The hyperdrive should be ready now. Dock all your ships and prepare to escape.
The hyperdrive wave has collapsed, due to some kind of inhibitor field. You'll have to guard the fleet again until the source is located.
Order your Strike Crafts to deal with the enemy fighters while your Capital Ships move toward the enemy Carrier for interception; have some Strike Crafts guard them or they will fall prey of the enemy fighters.
The enemy Carrier is the source of the inhibitor field. Order your Capital ships to destroy it, but pay attention to the fighters and the ramming tecnique of the Carrier, continuosly order your ships to change altitude and direction to avoid such attacks.
As the enemy Carrier is destroyed or has left the map, the inihibitor field will be disabled. However, before leaving, have your Collectors harvest everything they can and replace your losses. An other Destroyer and some more Ion Cannon Frigates, plus Multi-Gun Corvettes (you can retire Heavy Corvettes for them) will work fine in the next mission.
MISSION 8: THE CATHEDRAL OF KADESH
+ Protect the MotherShip
+ Destroy all Attackers
!!!!!!!! BUG WARNING !!!!!!!! BUG WARNING !!!!!!!! BUG WARNING !!!!!!!!
As I stated in all previous missions, capturing enemy ships (aside the Frigate to complete mission 3) will cause a big problem in this mission. Sierra support politely replied to my e-mails telling that I am the only one suffering this problem, but here's my experience: everytime I start this mission and I have even one extra enemy ship with me, the game bombs to Windows. This happens with every version of the game. Also, with patch 1.5 this problem always happens, even without captured ships. This is the only mission where I experienced this problem, and I don't know what to say aside reporting it.
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! END OF BUG WARNING !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
UPDATE TO THIS PROBLEM: I restarted the game as a Taiidan, and tried to capture as many vessels as possible. In this mission, I arrived with four Ion Array Frigates, one Assault Frigate, one Destroyer and three Multi-Beam Frigates, and the game didn't crashed. However, my MotherShip was destroyed, and had to replay it over. The game still ran, but no orders were accepted, and neither the enemies attacked me. Game version was 1.0. END OF UPDATE
The enemy Carrier had a powerful field generator that deformed the hyperspace wave, pratically inhibiting all hyperspace jumps. Also, they hyperspace signature was identical to your own; this is an iteresting question considering that the MotherShip's hyperdrive was reverse-engineered from the Khar-Toba. This jump will bring the fleet out of the Nebula.
The fleet is still in the Nebula. Multiple contacts are approaching fast. Three of them are Carriers, each one carrying an inhibitor device. All three have to come down if you want to escape.
An alien emissary will ask if you want to join them again. Fleet Comand will state that we have the same hyperspace technology, and the HomeWorld your fleet seek might be theirs as well. The Renegades will start attacking.
Group your Capital Ships and assing them an escort, but be sure that the MotherShip and remaining vessels. Do not harvest resources for now, or your Collectors will be destroyed and the defense line too loose.
Move your assault group toward the nearest Carrier (should be the one coming from the left), and take it down: the tactic to use is the same of the previous mission, for all three of them. However, the Renegades will have Multi-Beam Frigates with them, so pay attention. Destroy them first before taking care of the Carrier. Each Carrier has 2 of such Frigates defending it.
As the first Carrier is down, move toward the nearest to your MotherShip and attack it. Repeat the same tactic and you won't have too many problems.
When the second Carrier is gone, the third and its whole escortof Fighters and Frigates will withdraw toward the heart of the Nebula, which has a friendly sensor contact, but it is defenetively not yours.
Pursue them, or you won't be able to leave. Order your Collectors to harvest and move your fleet toward the friendly contact. Always have Strike Crafts with your Capital Ships as the Renegades fighters will always try to attack you.
Near the heart of the Nebula there are six Multi-Beam Frigates: use your Frigates as a bait and order your Strike Crafts to attack them while your Capital ships reply to their fire and take the brunt of their attack. The remaining Carrier is near the contact.
The contact has been identified: it's the Khar-Toba. Metals and structures match the orginal found on Kharak; your origins are the same.
Destroy the Carrier, and, as usual, before leaving harvest everything you can. Replace your losses, but do not build any new Capital ship for now, concentrate on Heavy and Multi-Gun Corvettes and Attack Bombers instead.
MISSION 9: THE SEA OF THE LOST SOULS
+ Investigate the Anomaly
+ Destroy the Alien Ship
+ Salvage the Alien Ship
While the Khar-Toba was able to reach Kharak, its sister ship tried to hide in the Nebula. The Renegades started to steal passing ships by trapping them with hyperspace inhibitors. Soon, the Nebula become an off-limits region, and this way of life became the Renegade's religion.
The hyperdrive has been disabled, due to an anomaly on the MotherShip's path. This anomaly is an unknown vessel: it doesn't match any profile, and it is sorrounded by some inactive ships of various origins.
Begin to harvest resources, build a Probe and send it toward the vessel: as the Probe approaches, you'll see the ships activating and opening fire at the Probe. The ships sorrounding the vessel are 1 Taiidan Missile Destroyer, 2 Taiidan Assault Frigates, 2 Renegade Multi Beam Frigates and 1 Turanic Ion Array Frigate.
Move one or two Support Frigates (if you have) and the Attack Bombers (20), Heavy Corvettes (10) and Multi-Gun Corvettes (10) near the ship, sligthly on its left side (I considered the left side from the vessel's nose; the nose is the part pointing toward your MotherShip), away enough to avoid activation of the ships sorrounding the vessel. If you have any Interceptors, use them too.
Do not move any Capital or Super-Capital ship near the vessel or you'll lose control of them, and they will be used by the vessel as a reinforcment of its defenses. The plan is to use your Corvettes as a decoy for the Attack Bombers, allowing you to disable the vessel and therefore capturing 6 Capital Ships, 4 of them incorporating unknown technologies.
The plan is simple: from the left side (slightly from the rear, but, in general, the left side is not defended; the real threats are the Assault Frigates and the Missile Destroyer, the other Frigates do not have enough agility to track down Corvettes or Fighters), order your Corvettes to engage the vessel with an evasive tactic, and one or two seconds after, order the Attack Bombers to attack the vessel with a neutral stance (if attacked with an aggressive mode, the vessel will tend to smash on the vessel). The key to this plan are the Bombers, so just have the Corvettes fight on their own while you maneuver the Bomber group: all attack runs should be issued with a neutral tactic, then a quick retreat in evesive mode opposite to the Missile Destroyer, and then repeat until the vessel has been neutralized.
Now you'll have six brand-new ships at your command. Also, research section will be able to replicate missile technology, allowing you to build Missile Destroyers. Build one, and send a Salvage Corvette to retrieve all possible datas on the vessel.
As the Salvage Corvette returns to the MotherShip and docks with it, the Bentusi will appear, offering you Super-Heavy Chassis technology in exchange of the informations you retrieved. Gravity Generator technology will be also available.
Fleet Comand will ask the Bentusi for help again; they will reply that war is not their way, but even if the Taiidans rule the Empire, they have to respect the Galactic Council decisions: they will bring your matter to the Council for debate.
Before leaving, build a Carrier and two Support Frigates, if you do not have one. You can ignore replacing the Strike Crafts for now.
MISSION 10: SUPERNOVA RESEARCH STATION
+ Destroy Research Outpost
+ Destroy the Carrier
+ Destroyer All Enemies
The fleet is about to enter the outer limits of the Taiidan empire; the defense is very strict, but there is a weak point: a deep space research station near an active SuperNova. It is time to hunt the enemy that hunted us.
The SuperNova produces high powered radiations that can destroy Strike Crafts in seconds. Also, the radiations are so high that Capital Ships will take damage if they do not move in the veins of cosmic dust in the area.
Harvesting resources in this area is extremely dangerous, not only the radiations will constantly damage Collectors, Controllers or Carriers, but you'll discover that the Taiidan are using mines, which are deadly even to Destroyers. As I always reach this mission with a good fleet and enough resources, I do not harvest there. However, if you need, use the Carrier instead of the Controller, as it will repair the Collectors when docked. Also, be sure to strictly follow the Collectors and place one other Support Frigate near the Carrier to repair its damages, then retreat to the MotherShip when the Frigate's health bar reaches the yellow. Build a second Support Frigate and have them escort the Carrier: one will repair the Carrier and one other the Supoort Frigate; switch roles sometime.
To reach the Research Outpost, there are two main routes: one takes the upper dust vein, while the other the lower: I suggests the lower, as the upper is heavily mined; travelling along the lower vein will let you avoid this risk and take by surprise the garrison at the end of the upper vein. The lower vein is protected only by 5 Assault Frigates. Remember to order your Support Frigates/Repair Corvettes to follow your assault group and repair them as soon as their health bar reaches the yellow level. However, when the lower vein ends, you'll have to go to the upper vein to destroy a group of Super-Capital Ships, formed by a Heavy Cruiser and two Destroyers.
Once this group is gone, move all your Frigates on the upper vein, repair and begin to travel toward the Research Station. It is defended by a large number of Defenders (immobile: an easy prey even for Ion Cannon Frigates), 2 Assault Frigates, 3 Ion Cannon Frigates, 5 Assault Frigates slightly below the base and one Carrier, with Mutli-Gun Corvettes in it. Destroy the Ion Cannon Frigates first, then the first lines of Defenders to enter the zone protected by the Research Station. Attack and destroy the Carrier before it leaves, then split your group: the Destroyers will take care of the Defenders while the Frigates will destroy the enemy Frigates. Now destroy the Outpost.
In this mission, you can capture an enemy Heavy Cruiser and a Carrier, but the SuperNova radiations will force to use one Support Frigate to constantly repair the Salvage Corvettes; also, if the ships are damaged, there's no way to repair them, so the possibility of an explosion is very likely. Don't worry, you'll be able to capture more enemy ships on later missions.
Hyperspace when ready; I suggest the fast docking option for minimizing SuperNova-produced damages.
Ver 3.X addition: it is possible to capture the enemy Heavy Cruiser located in the uppermost dust vein, with no damage to the Salvage Corvettes: the path they'll follow (a stright line toward the Mothership) is protected by the cosmic dust, so they won't recieve damage. However, after the Destroyers are gone and the Cruiser siezed, you can move all remaining (if any) Salvage Corvettes to replace the destroyed ones and two Repair Corvettes to fix them up.
MISSION 11: TANHAUSER GATE
+ Destroy the Taiidan Fleet
You have intercepted a coded Taiidan transmission: it shows an huge machinery, probably a living computer, speaking to an humanoid figure: the Kushan fleet is the matter of the discussion: if you should enter the inner core of the Empire, it could be a disaster; also, seems that Taiidan spies reported that the Bentusi are helping you, and they must not bring the matter to the Council.
Hyperdrive has been disabled: you have recieved a distress call from the Bentusi: they are under attack by Taiidan forces.
The Bentusi must be defended: immediately send your Capital Ships to engage the Taiidan formation, and position your Salvage Crovettes halfway between the MotherShip and the Bentusi Carrier. The Taiidan formation is composed of one Heavy Cruiser, 4 Ion Frigates, 2 Assault Frigates and three Destroyers; if you are lucky, the Bentusi will be able to destroy a Frigate or heavily damage a Destroyer before your arrival. Also, the Heavy Cruiser is a very tempting prey to capture.
Have your Capital Ships engage the Frigates and the Destroyers; the Heavy Cruiser should disengage from combat as soon as it detects the Salvage Corvettes; if it doesn't, have your Missile Destroyers fire on it to attract it attention. The easiest way to capture it is to lure it near the MotherShip, moving the Salvage Corvettes behind the MotherShip for protection. This will also make the Cruiser fire on the MotherShip instead of the Corvettes: this is when you have to order them to dock with the Cruiser: one or two will be probably destroyed by its turrets, but two Corvettes are enough to stop the Cruiser from moving and firing, allowing you to build more Salvage Corvettes to finish the operation.
Meanwhile, your Capital Ships should have destroyed all other Taiidan ships: move them away from the Cruiser or they will keep firing on it, wasting your efforts in capturing it.
As the Cruiser will be under your control, the Bentusi will thank you revealing the origin of your race: during the First Times, a war disrupted the old empire; the conquerors were merciful but exiled the losers from their homeworld, hoping to erase their image from the memories of everyone. Crowded in gigantic Freighters, the losers became their journey: may ships were destroyed by imperfect technology, others established in the Great Nebula, but only few of these were able to reach a remote planet at the far end of the galaxy; the Guidestone you are carrying testimonies your origins: it was sculpted from a piece of rock from the Angel Moon near Hiigara, your homeworld. Many propheticized your return, and probably the time has come.
Before leaving the area, be sure to have harvested everything and that your Strike Crafts are locked down in your Carrier or MotherShip.
MISSION 12: GALACTIC CORE
+ Protect the Fleet
+ Destroy the Source of the Gravity Field
+ Protect the Defector
The hyperdrive has been disabled due to a malfunction. The wave generation will be interrupted to allow diagnostics and necessary repairs.
As soon as the MotherShip will come out from the hyperspace, it will be sorrounded by Gravity Generators: no Strike Crafts will be able to fly until those Generators are active.
The first thing to do is to eliminate all combat Frigates near the MotherShip. Gather your Capital Ships into a wall formation and destroy the two Assault Frigates, then concentrate on the approaching Missile Destroyer. When those ships are down, you will be able to destroy the 3 Gravity Well Generators; each Generator is backed up by two Support Frigates, which will repair them as soon as they take damage. To speed up the procedure, destroy the Support Frigates first, then the Gravity Wells.
Now the Strike Crafts will be able to move. The situation is this: two enemy Carriers are harvesting resources, heavily protected by Strike Crafts and Frigates (a Support Frigate, 2 Ion Cannon Frigates and two Assault Frigates for each Carrier). Also, an Heavy Cruiser and its escort (6 Ion Cannon Frigates, some Heavy Corvettes and Defenders), are patrolling the right area of the map. They start the mission in the rightmost resource field, and will proceed toward the left of the map; however, if the Carriers come under attack, the Cruiser and its group will move toward your MotherShip. Order your Collectors to harvest, but pay attention where they'll go: the rightmost deposit (the one where the Cruiser started) is mined.
First, deploy all Strike Crafts and position them aruound the MotherShip: move all your Capital Ships except one Destroyer (or two/three Ion Cannon Frigates) toward the Cruiser and its group, backed up by a Carrier and six Salvage Corvettes (if you want to capture the Cruiser. If not, have the Corvettes dock with the Carrier and keep it near the MotherShip).
The tactic to capture the Cruiser is the usual: destroy all its escorts, then use your Capital Ships as decoy while the Salvage Corvettes dock with it. Two of them will allow you to disable the Cruiser, useful if other Corvettes have being destroyed during the capture operation.
An other Taiidan Destroyer will hyperspace in: this time, the Destroyer and its Captain, Elson, will ask for your help: they are pursued by other Taiidan Ships and the Destroyer is badly damaged.
Probably your Capital Ships will be too far away to help the Destroyer; use your Strike Crafts for long-range interception of the pursuing ships and the Frigates for close-in defence. The Destroyer will move toward your MotherShip, but won't reply to enemy fire; you really have to save it. The rogue Destroyer is attacked by two Ion Cannon Frigates, two Assault Frigates and one Support Frigate. Engage the Ion Frigates first, then the Assault and finally the Support.
As Captain Elson positions his Destroyer near your MotherShip, you will be able to leave the area. However, if you want, you can capture the two Taiidan Carriers and harvest all unmined resources.
MISSION 13: THE KAROS GRAVEYARD
+ Dock with a Strike Craft to the Comm Repeater
Captain Elson tells the story that lead to an open rebellion toward the Taiidan Empire: after centuries, the Empire became corrupted and decadent; the use of a atmosphere deprivation warhead on your planet was the light that ingnited it; he asks for help to contact the resistance: there is a Transmitter in a wreckage area: once active, the resitance will start attacking the Empire.
This mission will allow you to finally research Heavy Guns and therefore build Heavy Cruisers; there is the possibility to research Cloack Generator.
To activate the Repeater, a Strike Craft will have to dock with the "Junkyard Office", a piece of ship located in the graveyard. Unfortunately, the Graveyard is well protected by Automated Guns, powerful enough to destroy most Corvettes in few shots. Also Capital Ships will have troubles with them if took too light. Also, all resource deposits are near those guns, and Collectors will surely have hard times. Last, but not least, the graveyard hosts a strange ship, the "Dawg". This ship is invincible (or so it seems), and it has the job to steal ships. All ships stole by this Dawg won't be returned at the end of the mission, so pay lots of attention when moving your ships. The Dawg will emerge from hyperspace throuh a series of portals throughout the map.
The lightest-defended side of the Graveyard is the right one (with the MotherShip at the bottom of the Sensor Manager): this mission can be accomplished only with Frigates if you have a good number of them (let's say 9 or more Ion Cannon Frigates) and two Support Frigates (or two Repair Corvettes, if you wish) to repair them, so that you won't risk to lose Super-Capital Ships.
Simply move the Frigates from the right side of the Graveyard to the Junkyard Office, then, when the road is free from Automated Guns, send a Strike Craft to dock with the structure, the hyperspace to your next mission.
If someone is wondering if it is possible to reach the Office only with Strike Crafts, I'd say that it is possible, but extremely difficult. This is only theory, I do not grant the success of that plan. First, you'll need a large group of Scouts (20), backed up by Interceptors (10/15) and some Light Corvettes (10). Send the Corvettes first, then the Interceptors and finally the Scouts, all with an evasive/neutral tactic, in a loose formation. Scouts should use their special action to get an extra burst of speed, which should be disabled near the Office to maximize the chances of a straight-in docking. The Dawg is not attracted by Strike Crafts, and won't dare to come too close to the MotherShip.
MISSION 14: THE BRIDGE OF SIGHS
+ Destroy Field Generator
+ Destroy Hyperspace Portals
The data provided by Elson were correct: the homeworld is sorrounded by a network of hyperspace inhibitors that are invisible to sensors. We have to destroy one to get our own access point.
The objective is quite simple, but the situation is not. As your Research team allows you, study Sensor Systems and build one Sensor System to have a clearer view of the situation. The Hyperspace Inhibitor Fiel Emitter is directly in front of your MotherShip, sorrounded by enough Ion Cannon Frigates to form a rough sphere around it; also, if you send a Probe or a Proximity Sensor to the Inhibitor, you'll see other enemy ships: a Carrier, 2 Resource Controllers, a Destroyer, an Heavy Cruiser, two Cloack Generators, some Resource Collectors and some Multi-Gun Corvettes.
Gather all your Capital Ships in front of the MotherShip; if you have a large number of Frigates, divide this group in two, one with your Super-Capital ships, which will be used as spearhead, the other one composed of all your Frigates, which will serve as a secondary assault force, slightly behind the Cruisers; use Support Frigates to repair all damage ships; Strike Crafts will defend the MotherShip.
The Ion Cannon Frigates around the Inhibitor do not form a perfect sphere: on its sides this sphere is more concentrated than on front; the best way to engage as few Ion Cannon Frigates as possible is to travelin a direct line from the MotherShip to the Inhibitor, from below. However, remember that the Ion Cannon Frigates won't remain immobileif they spot your ships on their sensors, they will move to intercept; also, all interception will be made from all sides, so do not relax when you destroyed the single Ion Cannon Frigate you saw; soon, other will come; an usual attack wave is composed by 5 or 6 Frigates.
Do not move too fast. Take your time to repair any damage, replace any loss and build some extra ships; this will allow you also to spot the Hyperspace Portals that the Taiidans will establish 10/15 minutes from mission start. From these Portals the Taiidans will send ships as long as you are near them: the usual group sent through a Protal is composed by a Destroyer, Support Frigates, Ion or Assault Frigates (usually 3 or 4 of one only type), Multi-Gun Corvettes, Attack Bombers and Interceptors. They are not really dangerous as you should be able to stop most of the Capital and Super-Capital Ships while they are exiting from hyperspace, or even destroy the Portal before they have completed the passage, resulting in all ships not out yet in being destroyed. There are three Portals: on between the MotherShip and the Inhibitor that has to come down to allow "quiet" harvesting for you Collectors, and two on each side of the defensive sphere arounf the Inhibitor. As destroying these Portals is a secondary objective and they won't send troops as long as you stay away from them, it's your choice; I usually destroy the right one, which seems just to pump troops even if you are kilometers away.
Getting rid of the Ion Cannons and all defenses around the Inhibitor should be simple with all fights you had durin the game. The Carrier near the Inhibitor is quite easy to capture as it won't move at all, and will only reply to fire if Salvage Corvettes are approaching. The Heavy Cruiser will act as usual, trying to destroy all Salvage Corvettes near it and ignoring other targets, so having a Carrier nearby will help if you want to capture it. Remember that the Corvettes will follow the shortest way possible to reach the MotherShip, ignoring enemies, so if you want them to reach safely the MotherShip, destroy some Ion Cannon Frigates and have them escorted by Attack Bombers and other Corvettes.
Destroying the Inhibitor is quite simple, however, as it rotates, your ships will try to move to always have a clear line of sight to a specific section, often meaning a risk of impact between them and an other section, resulting in losing the ship.
Once the Inhibitor is destroyed, harvest all possible resources on the map and concentrate your production on Super-Capital ships.
MISSION 15: CHAPEL PERILIOUS
+ Destroy the Object
We must assume that the defensive fleet is alerted of our presemce. All vessels ready for maximum efficency. All weapons operating at 100% and actively tracking.
Hyperspace has been interrupted. There's a large object in collision course with the MotherShip. Destruction of the Hyperspace Inhibitor alerted the Taiidan and they were able to produce this trap. Impact will be in 6 minutes.
The objective of this mission is simple: there's a huge asteroid moving toward your MotherShip and you'll have to take it down. However, the asteroid is protected by a large Taiidan fleet, composed by Attack Bombers, Multi-Gun and Heavy Corvettes, Defenders, 9 Assault Frigates, 3 Destroyers and 9 Ion Cannon Frigates.
The first thing to do is to gather all your Capital Ships in a wall formation and proceed toward the enemy. Launch all Strike Crafts you have. Attack Bombers, Heavy and Multi-Gun Corvettes will be especially useful against the Taiidan fleet and the asteroid.
The first waves of Taiidan attackers will be the Strike Crafts, not a hard work if you have two or three Missile Destroyers. Then, the Frigates, followed shortly by the Destroyers. Have your Capital Ships engage the Frigates first, then the Destroyers while your Strike Crafts take care of the asteroid. They won't be enough to stop it, so concentrate fire on a single target before engaging an other one. When the Taiidan fleet is down to two Destroyers, have your Super-Capital Ships and half of your Frigates engage the asteroid. It moves slower even than Heavy Cruisers, so Frigates will be surely able to get within firing range.
Use your Carriers to deal some damage to the asteroid too and if you have some resources, reinforce your wing of Frigates (larger ships will take too much time). You'll have up to the last second before the impact to destroy the asteroid, even if Fleet Comand alerts everyone of the incoming impact (BTW, the impact will destroy the MotherShip, whatever health it or the asteroid have).
If you succeded in destroying the asteroid, harvest all resources in the map and spend all of them to replace your losses and increasing your ranks' number with Destroyers (ignore Missile Destroyers if you have two or more).
Ver 3.X addition: apparently, in version 1.0 there is a bug: in my last replay, I had three Carriers (two of them captured) and placed them just in front of the MotherShip, and when the asteroid was near (less than one minute for impact), I ordered them to attack the asteroid. With my surprise, when the giant rock was near the Carriers, rather than first smashing them away (yes, I admit it, tactical error...) and then proceeding for the MotherShip, it just stopped, leaving me the possibility to capture two more Destroyers and finish off all Frigates before concentrating on the asteroid. I don't know if this is a "real" error or just a minor glitch.
MISSION 16: HIIGARA
+ Destroy all Enemy Forces
"Karan." "You took one step too close to me."
Fleet Comand is gone. Emergency Biotech teams are trying to save Karan. The asteroid attack served its purpouse as a delay tactic; sensors show a large number of Taiidan ships, with a MotherShip-class vessel among them.
First, move your Resource Controller and all Collectors in one of the nearby resource deposits, and ignore the Carrier above the MotherShip: you'll soon recieve visit from the first group of Taiidan ships, 6 Ion Cannon Frigates from the bottom. Use your Strike Crafts and part of the Frigates to stop them, and move all other combatant ships in front of the MotherShip: an other group of Taiidan ships, this time larger (namely 5 Ion Cannon Frigates, 5 Assault Frigates, 2 Missile Destroyers, 2 Destroyers and one Heavy Cruiser), will attack you.
Move the Support Frigates (if you have) near the MotherShip, issuing a support order, so that it will be partially healed, though it won't be enough to stop damages from Taiidan ships. Now concentrate fire one target to quickly destroy it and pass to an other one; when the Strike Crafts are done with the first six Ion Cannon Frigates, use them to destroy the Frigates from the second group while our Capital Ships take out the Destroyers and the Missile Destroyers. If you have Salvage Corvette, use them to capture the enemy Heavy Cruiser, you'll surely need extra firepower in this mission.
When this group is gone, Taiidan reinforcments will exit hyperspace above you. DO NOT move your ships to intercept. Repair them, replace your losses and wait. Before the first batch of reinforcments, an other group, identical to the second one, will attack the MotherShip from the front. Repeat the same tactic used with the first group, and prepare to see an other group of Taiidan ships coming out from hyperspace below you. Ver 3.X addition: you should have time to destroy the first group before it reaches the MotherShip. I did it with 4 Heavy Cruisers with Attack Bombers, Heavy and Multi-Gun Corvettes as support. You can also send Attack Bombers and Corvettes (Heavy and Multi-Gun) against the reinforcments to at least destroy the Frigates; such group should be able to take down all Frigates and maybe a Destroyer before they reach the MotherShip. If you are going to attack with the Cruiser (with four of them one was nearly eliminated), be sure to bring in Salvage Corvettes (for the Heavy Cruiser and for one Destroyer) and Repair Corvettes.
Again, do not move your ships and wait for the third group, which comes from above: it composed of 5 Assault Frigates, 5 Ion Cannon Frigates, 3 Destroyers and one Heavy Cruiser; probably, during this attack a fourth group of Taiidan ships will enter the are, just on top of the MotherShip: this time it is Captain Elson with reinforcments: he's trasferring under your command squadrons Kor and J'ssah (2 Missile Destroyers and 3 Ion Cannon Frigates - I saw the Ion Cannon Frigates replaced by Assault Frigates...when this happened, I got six of them) while his Destroyer and six Ion Cannon Frigates will fight on their own.
With Elson's help you should be able to repel this wave; after this wave, Elson and his group will move toward the Emperor MotherShip, located exactly oppositely to your MotherShip. Do not follow him, there's the last group of Taiidan reinforcments still coming from below; this time there are one Heavy Cruiser, 9 Ion Cannon Frigates and 9 Assault Frigates. Move all your Frigates and Strike Crafts toward them, and if they are numerically inferior, send the Super-Capital ships too.
Now it is time to destroy the enemy MotherShip. Repair and replace all your losses, then head toward your enemy. Elson will directly go toward the MotherShip, deviating its course only when the enemy Carrier harvesting resources near the Emperor will come within sensor range (or it will attack it...the Carrier itself will be probably destroyed, not before releasing a grup of 12 Multi-Gun Corvettes and 12 Attack Bombers). He should be able to destroy it, but its group will be shattered by the Attack Bombers and the Multi-Gun Corvettes protecting the Carrier. If there are survivors, they will go after the MotherShip: a suicide, but this will allow you to see what kind of defenses the MotherShip has: 3 Heavy Cruisers, each backed up by three Support Frigates, 2 Missile Destroyers and one Gravity Well Generator, plus the MotherShip, with ability to build other units (it will usually produce Interceptors, only when under attack by your forces...I saw the Interceptors perform suicidal attacks against the surviving vessels from Elson's fleet once). The contacts orbiting around Hiigara are only Proximity Sensors, ignore them.
When Elson's attack is finished, the suriving Strike Crafts and the Heavy Cruisers (plus their Support Frigate escort) will move toward you at different speed, allowing you to pick them out with concentrated fire one at time.
The Missile Destroyers near the enemy MotherShips are not really aggressive, and will reply only if fired upon (or when the MotherShip will come under attack). The Gravity Well Generator can be ignored.
As the last Missile Destroyer goes down, attack the MotherShip, ignoring everything exiting from its hangars.
When the enemy MotherShip is gone, Fleet Comand will recover and the Bentusi will appear with the Galactic Council.
* * *
The Kushan fleet finally arrived on its Homeworld. A place of wonder, for everyone used to the scorching sands of Kharak. All signs of the old Taiidan empire were destroyed, and a celebration marked the beginning on a new era. The Kushan colonists were released from their forced sleep and Karan S'jet, Fleet Comand, survived extraction from the MotherShip's core and was the last Kushan person to set foot on the homeworld.