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I decided that before releasing the 3.1 patch I would post tutorials for combat in the mod. This first one will be for space combat and will be followed by a land combat tutorial.

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First of all, as you have noticed, this mod is a lot more fast-paced than most others, and certainly more than vanilla FoC. This can present a challenging experience for those of you unused to this pace of gameplay. However, this speed can be used to your advantage in combat situations, particularly with the Rebels and ZC, whose small, difficult-to-hit ships can make devastating hit-and-run attacks against the generally stronger but slower Imperial forces, especially since corvettes carry canonical armaments, which include small numbers of turbolasers. The Rebels possess excellant small ships for this task, the best being the MC30, which possesses heavy torpedoes capable of damaging capitals, while the ZC has the Interceptor 4, which is a small ship with disproportionally heavy armor and shields, increasing survivability even at short range. Be careful, however, when engaging ISDs, as their tractor beams can pin small ships in place to be destroyed. Making high-speed runs can increase chances of breaking away from the beam before they have the chance to fully lock.

Another feature that can be utilized to increase your units' survivability, at least for small ships, is to attack perpendicular to the enemy. The fast-moving ships coming at an angle cause the enemy shots to miss more often, where if ships attack head-on or from a standstill they will be easier targets and hit more often. Small ship tactics are important for the ZC and Rebels, as their heavy ships just cannot stand up to Imperial heavy ships one-on-one, and are almost as expensive (to simulate rarity, for example, at the Battle of Endor, the entire Rebel fleet possessed just a handful of heavy capital ships).

Another feature about this mod is the space stations, which are, especially patch 3.1, much more formidable opponents. It is much more cost-effective in galactic conquest to build high-level stations on critical worlds than to build a fleet of comparable power to defend it. A good strategy to use when facing a superior invading fleet is, instead of sending out your inferior number of ships to face the enemy, group them around the station. This not only increases the amount of firepower that can be concentrated against the enemy, but it also divides the return fire between your ships grouped around the station and the station itself. Even a high-level station by itself is a powerful defense, even against a multi-capital ship attack. The power of these stations also increases the importance of artillery. However while the Empire and Rebels have ship-based artillery, the ZC does not possess an equivalent, forcing them to engage their enemies up close. However, they are capable of sabotaging critical defensive structures to achieve the same results, for a price.

Fighters and bombers are an interesting factor in this mod. Capital ships and space stations now possess heavy anti-fighter defenses to almost make fighters and bombers seem useless. However, this is not the case. Fighters are the fastest units in the game, and as such are still difficult to hit if used properly. Therefore they are effective as scouts and anti-scouts. They are also still the best units for killing bombers. Bombers, while less powerful than before against large ships and stations, are quite effective against corvettes, and still effective in numbers against larger targets. In this mod the best fighters and bombers in the game (with the exception of TIE Defenders) belong to the Rebels (their fighters all possess missiles or torpedoes), while they are offset by huge numbers of Imperial craft. The ZC hovers somewhere in between, although the Skipray is probably one of the better bombers in the game.

A key factor to remember in this game is that large numbers of bombers can effectively overwhelm corvettes, which can do the same to frigates, which can do the same to capital ships or space stations. Therefore it is always prudent to use your ships wisely and in groups to maximize combat effectiveness and minimize weaknessess. If you see that your enemy is preparing to attack one of your planets, use small ships to launch a spoiling attack and attempt to take out the transports, then retreat before taking too many losses.

This mod has "realistic" speed and damage to allow realistic tactics to be effective. Combined arms must be utilized in order to be sucessful, although most Imperial and some Rebel ships are almost self-contained battle groups in and of themselves, it is always best to act in unison with many different types of ships. When building a fleet, think in terms of a carrier battle group, with the larger ships and bombers in the middle protected by rings of fighters and other escort ships.

I hope this helps you all when playing the mod. This is the first time I have ever tried to write something like this, so don't be too hard on me. If you play RTS games often then most of this isn't news to you, but if you don't play RTS games very often then this will hopefully be helpful. Have fun and good luck! Keep an eye out for the next patch (3.1) which will correct some bugs and make some improvements to gameplay.




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