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[edit] Federation units (Including Titans)Edit

  • Note: For those of you who are unfamiliar with unit names, you can refer to the mechanics wikia page and the in-game unit database with the entry #.
  • Note: Currently, mainstream units will not be included in the recommendations, example: GM / GM II / GM III, Hizack, Zaku Kai...etc. (special remodelling will be mentioned however). Also I don't plan on going into ace suits too much except where they have something special that people may miss. This may change base on response (not bloody likely with the activity level on this game.)


Unit name

Designation / Entry #

Money / Resource

Rating / useful period

Details

MP guntank

(MP = mass produced)

RX-75 / 048

xxx / xxx

B+ / Early

For EFSF part 1, this unit is the first truly effective artillery fit for mass production on earth. When supported by scanning and screening units (and preferably with large radius commander close by) the MP guntank can provide devastating long range attack against other ground and air unit of the same tech era. The later RMV-1 guntank can largely be used interchangeably with RX-75. It is a good idea to rush research all the way to MP guntank at the start, and wait for this unit before going on full offensive rather then wasting too much of your money on bombers / tanks / proto guntank. this unit becomes obselete comes part 2, while it begins to lag behind near the end of part 1 (though still useful as garrison, anti-air, support fire unit)

Magellan

Z Z

C+ / Early

For the early half of EFSF part 1, Magellan can dominate space when used in small packs piloted by your horde of officers. They start to lose effectiveness when zeon rolls out with Zaku F2 and beyond. Later on the Salamis Kai upgrade makes them very useful again, having a decent ranged attack and able to carry 3 MS strike team and a single screen making it an optimal self-contained defense response unit.

Whitebase

Z Z

A- / Early

One of the best and most well-rounded carrier in the game, with an excellent upgrade path all the way from early to end game. The carrier has good speed (8 movement), decent armor, decent weaponry, decent carrier capacity, and space / earth compatibility.

Tin-Cod

Z Z B- / All For EFSF, this is one of the cheapest and most mobile screen available, unfortunately it cannot compare to Zeon's Mazella jet turret.

Core booster

Z Z B+ / All Quality screening, having an excellent movement on earth and in space. Its speed combined with bare-bones scanning makes this unit the best "ram it in their face" screens, especially in space. Remember that once you've built a certain number of the same units the credit cost actually goes down (your manufacturing expertise for that specific unit goes up, this is a hidden stat you can only tell by observing the credit cost). This unit becomes very attractive in cost once you max out its manufacturing lvl.

Rugun (Radar plane)

Z Z A- / All The optimal earth scanning unit, also comes with the highly desirable 1 hex minovsky spray ability. Finally its cheap price makes it a viable screen when needed (though not as cheap as tin-cod). This unit defines the term "utility" and is an indispensable support unit.

Anti-beam bomber

Z Z A+ / All Unique in that it is armed with the most broken space ability ever, the anti-beam field. Anywhere from covering your carriers in movement to giving your projectile MS an unfair advantage against their team, and needed for the off-chance of blocking enemy MAP beam attacks. Enemy Bigzam (or insert any badass MA and beam weapon MS here) giving you a headache? Drop a field on him and lock out all his ranged weapons. Units like Gashu, Z'ssa booster, Gm Kai ...etc work very well with anti-beam fields on them. Be warned that NT weaponry work through anti-beam field though (very rare from computer player)!
GM cannon II B / Mid Versatile but not stellar in any particular role. Th *in prog*
Hyaku Shiki Kai (Earth adapted) B / Late to End Otherwise named "100 type", an ace suit. the Kai (earth) version has the only true omni-earth adaptability in the game, being able to move and shoot anywhere on earth with no penalty, including water. It is the EFSF's best water unit, and incidentally is adapted to plains, moutains, snow, forest and desert at the same time, the same it true for its attack, with no penalty whatsoever, against water or air even. The problem is that this unit isn't available til later (tech 22 or so?) and it begins to feel underpowered soon after when endgame units begin to roll out, however it still remains the best available unit in water by miles for the EFSF with unmatched adaptability, and remain a useful ace suit throughout the game for that reason. Incidentally, it is one of a few units with 200% limit, so top ace can really show their stuff in it.

Zeku Ein

RMS-141 / 272-283

xxx / xxx

A / Late to End

An admittedly expensive unit with extraordinary flexibility and devastating long range potential in its Armament C mode where it truly shines. This unit can take you all the way to the endgame, remaining one of the best long range unit in space and a decent one on earth (problem being accuracy due to poor attack adaptability on earth). Always try to assign one high command stat officer to each stack. In its C mode, it is slow but has a RNG 1-3 attack (making it artillery and close range capable) that does insane damage with high accuracy, for artillery MP units only the Rick diaz kai available very late in the game can compete and they only have RNG 1-2. Even though it has poor adaptability on earth, their attack is so powerful that after the hit penalty they still remain one of the highest damage artillery there. In the top 3 in ranged attack power for MP units. Their mode A can turn them in decent speed tanks, as is the average speed mode B which have limited artillery ability while keeping the tankyness. Note: They use a lot of fuel when firing in flight mode on earth.
Psycho Gundam II B+ / Late to End Most likely built when you use Glemmy's axis or Sirroco's Titan. This unit in flight mode on earth is a monster. While they cannot use its NT weapon on earth and therefore losses out on a significant portion of its attack power, they are almost impossible to shoot down due to 1) I-field, 2) no melee vulnerability when flying, 3) very few effective projectile weapon units in late game. While their attack power is abit on the low side, with NT pilots their attack is adequate on ground units and devastating on air units. The unit also has amazing mobility on earth when flying (and it should be flying most of the time), and nothing short of a concentration of Zssa booster can threaten it, and if your playing scenario where opponent don't use Zssa boosters this unit is almost cheating. Try to catch enemy MS when they are in flight mode (NT piloted psycho II can shoot down a unit of Jegan in flight in 1 volley) as psycho II in flight has good air attack adaptability.
Rick Diaz Kai B+ / Late to End A suitable finale to the lacklustre Rick Diaz research line. Where its predecessor is overpriced and subpar (possibly only good for their projectile weapons), Rick Diaz kai is fantastic in comparison. It is similar to Xeku Ein C mode, with an absolutely devastating RNG 1-2 attack, easily top 3 in destructive range power for MP units in the game. However, this unit is like a watered down version of Xeku Ein mode C, its attack is in same class but have 1 less RNG, it also does not have other modes so it can only act as artillery / back rank heavy hitter, finally it's fragile, with no shield and average agility, they take significant damage if you leave them open to counterattacks, their RNG 1-2 max doesn't help them stay out of the way either compare to the RNG 1-3 Xeku Ein. This is still a great unit, it simply shows how good the Xeku Ein is, and should be used as the main artillery in endgame if Xeku Ein is unavailable (Ex. AEUG campaigns).

[edit] Zeon units (Including Axis)Edit

Unit name

Designation / Entry #

Money / Resource

Rating / Useful period

Details

Dom cannon

900/3000

B+ / Early

For its era, this unit has an amazing long range attack. One look at the attack data shows you just how crazy its damage is for its time, along with great attack and terrain aptitude on earth. It even comes with respectable close range combat ability as if that wasn't enough. It is a low credit high resource unit, making it very spammable and recyclable. This unit can be effective well into tech era 15-18 before it begins to feel unbearably underpowered. In summary, this unit last a long time, is cheap (costing mostly resource), armed with an excellent RNG 2-3 attack, has amazing terrain and attack adaptability. This should be a staple earth unit for early game, perhaps even into midgame before being phased out.

Zaku II F (Armament C)

Anti-ship cannon

C / Early

Zaku II F is one of the earliest unit you will get, although the armament C will not be unlocked until later research and requires remodelling to arm the MS with it. This is one of the earliest artillery MS for Zeon main campaign you will get for space, and do well against any earlier unit (up to say, GM commando) in addition to adding a lot of supporting fire to any frontline MS engagement. For reference a full stack of them has the firepower of about 6+ crusiers and they do well with command bonus. They are very fragile up close and slow, therefore screening and carrier support is a must. They do great against GM snipers as they have a RNG 3 attack and outrange them. Though you should phase them out and replace them with better artillery as soon as possible, as even though they have good RNG 3 attack that is hard to replace they are simply too fragile and slow. Replacement by even RNG 2 MS like the Gashu is recommended.


Zugok - Di

MSM-07di

B+ / Early to Mid

Remodelled from the MSM-07S commander suit, this is a space/air unit with one purpose in mind: MAP weapon. It is one of the cheapest MAP weapon available, and works together with great movement in air and space. Bear in mind that it is fragile, and needs to be covered in space by screens and anti-beam field, whereas on earth it will need some good screening to bring into firing position. This unit can be refueled by Fat uncle and Papua (highly recommended if you plan on firing the MAP weapon more then once), which incidentally can give minovsky dodge bonus to cover them at the same time. For details on how best to use MAP weapons please refer to advanced tactics below. As far as I know this unit is available only Orthodox Zeon, Newborn Zeon and to main Zeon faction through the 3rd Igloo research project. (Neo-Zeon do not get this unit)


Anti-beam bomber

A+ / All

Unique in that it is armed with the most broken space ability ever, the anti-beam field. Anywhere from covering your carriers in movement to giving your projectile MS an unfair advantage against their team, and needed for the off-chance of blocking enemy MAP beam attacks. Enemy Bigzam (or insert any badass MA and beam weapon MS here) giving you a headache? Drop a field on him and lock out all his ranged weapons. Units like Gashu, Z'ssa booster, Gm Kai ...etc work very well with anti-beam fields on them. Be warned that NT weaponry work through anti-beam field though (very rare from computer player)!

Mazella tank

A- / All

The ultimate in cheap screening. when detached its jet turret is the cheapest screen with a RNG 1-2 air to air attack. It's bottom tank part can act as a mobile jet turret factory through the repair / replenish option.


Jotunheim

444

B / All

At first glance this seems to be a more expensive version of papua, which many people dismiss out of hand. However, a closer look reveals that this carrier comes with class A scanning and the ability to carry most MA (which many carriers do not). Combined with the ability to resupply MAs and its cheap cost, The Jotunheim makes a perfect MA (especially AoE variant)/Screen carrier with emergency scanning ability. In campaigne such as Casval's Zeon and Neo Zeon the Jotunheim really shines with the 4 Elmeths / Buro Browser and the Neul Ziel II you start with. Keep in mind ultra-large MA like Big Zam and some others� are still restricted to either the Dross or Jupiter.
Dross (Giant carrier) C+ / All Only 1 quality endears this ship to me. Before I go into that lets look at this carrier, it is slower then a snail, it has no effective weapons to speak of, but it has 1500 hits and 15 carrying capacity, in addition to the fact that it is the only 1 of 2 carrier that can carry all MAs (Even Bigzam fits inside this thing) make this a niche unit. It should be clear that this unit should be used as a mobile base and not as anything else, in such role it works perfectly, carrying a large complement of screens, anti-beam bomber and giant MAs make this unit a good support for massive assaults on fortified areas or base. Keep in mind that this unit is more fragile then its 1500 hits look, as it has no dodge to speak of and CAN be destroyed in a single volley especially by focus-fire from late or even midgame units. Cover it with screens and anti-beam field will make this a very resilient mobile base however. Finally, the one endearing quality this makes this unit recommended to have 1 or maybe 2 of is its credit cost, it is amazing cheap in credit but cost quite abit in resource. As resource can be refunded from scrapping unit, you can practically "borrow" this unit for free with a resource deposit, simply scrap it to get 90% or so of its cost back.

Gashu

B+ / Mid One of the best and most versatile midgame staple units. This unit is "omni" use, being well adapted to space and earth terrain, in both movement and weapon adaptability (see terrain adaptability in tactics section below for explanations). It has a RNG 1-2 attack, giving it artillery capacity and close range fighting ability. It has 2 different high damage RNG 1-2 weapons, giving it very high damage potential with command bonus and officer piloting. It comes with a very good limit for MP unit, maximizing officer abilities when piloting the gashu. It uses projectile weaponry exclusively, making this unit anti-beam field immune. This unit is *deadly* when covered by anti-beam field in space, making it immune to carrier and most EFSF MS attacks (which uses beam). Finally this unit has a better then average credit : resource ratio, making them comparatively cheaper. It should be noted that they are not equipped with shield and have low-mediocre dodge, so they do take quite abit of damage when tanking, try keeping it as artillery and use at close range sparingly, they do have an above average melee attack though.
Z'ssa Booster B / Late While expensive, It comes with great flight movement and a damaging RNG 1-2 projectile attack. It is at its best in space but does well on earth, with unmatched mobility and can bombard grount / water targets, though with a poor attack adaptability (therefore -20% to hit) for those terrain. On earth, while they have huge movement, are vulnerable to counterattacks unless you use them on weakened enemies, and they also need targets scanned in order to bomb effectively. I personally recommend that they be used mostly in space, where they work amazingly well with anti-beam fields, largely covering their vulnerability to counterattacks. It should be noted that most late game units (especially MP units) uses beam weaponry, and many projectile units have very poor power:cost ratio (Ex. Rick diaz), this makes Zssa booster + anti-beam field a potent combination. It is also one of the premier I-field MA killers.
Kapoor B / Late The best water MS Zeon has to offer, with one of the most versatile main cannon out of all their water MS. Unfortunately, this unit is underpowered against endgame units and should be kept in the water by then. Its best feature is its RNG 1-2 main cannon with water and air adaptability, making them excellent anti-air and anti-water units. They can also hop onto land to provide decent artillery on enemy ground unit at -20% to hit (Except plains?) though they'd have to be careful about counterattacks and therefore should be used on enemies that cannot counterattack in force. Remember, you can always put a ground tank up front (transported from submarines) to minimize losses if you significant counterattacks are unavoidable.


[edit] Basic tacticsEdit

  • Scanning
All attack and retaliation against greyed out unit suffers a 25% hit penalty, this can possibly translate to more then 25% damage loss especially against high agility targets, conversely on low agility targets like ships the effect of hit penalty would not be as severely. scanning is therefore critically important, especially mid-late game when even budget units have respectable agility. It is always good practice to focus attack on scanned units and have dedicated scanning units to open the battle. On earth, the radar plane for both sides serves this role very well for a very reasonable price, and it can also do 1 hex minovsky and emergency screening on top of scanning. Space is a bit more difficult especially for Federation, as A/S class cheap scanner is difficult to come by, whereas zeon has more option (though still expensive) including the radar zaku series, Buro Browser, Elmeth, Jotunheim, HM Psycom zaku II (MSN-01). For units like radar zaku and psycom zaku please remember to place a tank unit up front.
  • Importance of Minovsky
Critically important, the proper usage of Minovsky can determine whether you lose a lot of units or none at all in any given battle. Almost all ships, transport and dedicated scanner units have the ability to spray 1 hex or 2 hexes in the surrounding area. The concentration can be brought to 100%, where scanning becomes impossible. The key to minovsky is that all units inside the field gains a dodge bonus equal to the concentration, up to 50%. Therefore a unit with 10 agility will become 15 dodge, on top of any terrain / officer / morale / command bonus. High agility units combined with 50% Minovsky field becomes insanely difficult to put down. Keep in mind that enemy also gets this bonus, therefore it is a good idea to lay down a field and hold the line right on the edge of the field, to this end units that sprays 1 hex field is usually more useful then 2 hex fields due to the ease of controlling where you spray it. Conversely, it is usually better to focus attacks on enemy units with less minovsky bonus then those within, especially if those inside the field is high agility and piloted (try Haman's Quebely inside a 50% minovsky field). To see this in action, Cascal's Zeon is a great campaign to try this on, as you begin with 3 high agility Elmeth with enough NT pilots to use them, try keeping them in 50% minovsky field while enemies out in the open and you can take out 10+ MS with a single Elmeth with little-moderate damage. Finally, the higher the minovsky field, the harder it is to scan a unit inside it, for 100% concentration scanning becomes impossible, keep this in mind when you begin to lay out your minovsky and keep enemies out.
  • Terrain and attack adaptability
Every unit stat display shows the terrain and attack adaptability on the bottom in chinese characters. Every character represents a terrain going in this order:
Plains, Desert, Mountain, Forest, Snow, Water, Air, Space
In the weapons data unit display, the display at the bottom tells you your attack aptitude, a white coloured character means it suffers no penalty to hit an enemy in the given terrain, whereas a grey means a -20% chance to hit, and if the character for a given terrain not be there, your unit cannot attack units in that terrain at all. when you switch to the special data stat screen for the unit, the same format on the bottom appears but instead represent your terrain aptitude, if a given terrain character is coloured white then you suffer no movement and dodge penalty on the given terrain, whereas a grey means -20% dodge penalty and halved movement penalty when you are on the given terrain. Using proper units on proper terrain is hugely important to winning no loss battles. Note that mountain is the most common ground terrain on earth, with plains / flat being the second, forest / snow / desert can be safely ignored, water is also common but more specialized. Most water MS have greyed out terrain aptitude for all ground terrain except for flat, keep this in mind, and many ground MS have grey aptitude against air. Usually long range units have great attack aptitude, some of them having white attack aptitude against all ground terrain and air. Certain units are usable on earth but designed for space (Gegolgs) with only plains aptitude, do not use them on earth. Conversely, mountain terrain aptitude is the most desirable in an earth MS (all of them have white plains aptitude also). Look out for certain unit upgrade paths that turn them into worst earth suit, such as the Akuto zaku or Zaku Kai ---> Hizack upgrade, as Akuto and Zaki Kai both have great earth aptitude (white on plains and mountain for both attack and terrain aptitude) while the Hizack gets only plains aptitude for attack/defense, making it fight and dodge worst in moutains then its pre-upgrade counterpart (though they still fight better in space and can use the flight remodeling on earth). Most flight mode for MS turn their attack aptitude to grey for all ground terrain and white for air, though many enemy MS also have grey for attack air. MS with shield cannot use them while in flight mode, and flying units do not receive a terrain defense bonus (ex. Moutain usually give a +20% dodge bonus, I believe the triangle button shows you the terrain and minovsky bonus in the selected hex) , so pick your MS mode carefully considering all of the points when attacking / defending. You'll notice sometimes that you have a lot more space adapted units then earth, and later on it seems you have much more advanced units with space and plains adaptability then moutain ones, it may be viable to use them on earth (in flight mode and on ground when closing in) at such point due to how much more advanced they are, examples include Zeku-Ein (mode C) and Jegan, where they are so powerful that it makes up for their terrain penalty compare to the less advanced earth adapted units.
  • Officer statistics, unit limit and NT (Newtype)
For combat statistic explanation (shoot, melee, toughness and reflex), new-type officer listing and new-type explanation please refer to Here. An officer comes with a rank, 6 stats and accumulated experience, the stats in order: Command, Charisma, Shooting, Melee, Toughness, Reflex. (you can refer to Here to the officer screen for reference) The
  • Morale and fatigue
  • Unit statistic & Special data: Unit equipment, ability (Shield, I-field, refuel, Psycom ...etc) and multiple weapon system
  • Screening (ZOC or zone of control), long range attack and unit formation
This game favors ranged attack (RNG 2 or more) over toe-toe fighting. Usually for the same general cost, units with long ranged attack has higher attack power to close ranged units, and much better attack adaptability to boot. In general, if you use a lot of close ranged MS, you WILL lose them constantly and have to replenish / rebuild them, whereas if you use ranged unit you can win with no major MS causalty. The problem is that many long ranged unit do not have great close-in fighting abilities (there are notable exceptions: including Gashu, Hizack Custom, Rick diaz kai, Xeku-Ein B/C mode...etc, making them very versatile units) and may be vulnerable when these unit close in. The solution is screening, in simplified terms, this means hiding your artillery behind a line of cheap, disposable unit. Early EFSF example on earth would be MP guntanks behind a line of tincod or tanks, and for Zeon, Zaku or dom cannon behind a line of Mazella jet turret.
This do not mean that you don't want any close range MS, but rather use them in sprinkles as a reserve or for hitting weakened / routed enemies, finally they are good for hitting carriers and certain MAs, they may also be used as tanks (especially if they have shield) in the front with 2 fragile heavy hitter in the backrow (Ex. Gm commando in front + 2x Gm sniper in the back) as they tend to have shield or more hits or agility (not always). The exception to this rule is ace suits, as many elite ace suits are closed ranged MS, they are viable when used properly, you should not lose any unit in the stack as the ace up front can take most of the hits (don't rambo with them though, they will fall if focus fired by a strong opponent, cover them and use them on a weakened enemy for maximum effect), legend combos such as good NT pilot in high-end NT MS/MA are game breaking on their own and exception to all the rules above, (example: Neo-Zeon Kysubaru's 5 NT pilots with 3 Elmeth in the beginning can take all of space except Zeon home base when used properly). For close ranged MS, good minovsky is Critical as they cut down losses significantly, especially with ace suits, where the total dodge after minovsky 50% bonus becomes astronomical, good use of anti-beam field in space is amazing on non-beam weaponry MS also.To this end, cheap / fast unit like radar plane with 1 hex minovsky is your best bet, while also acting as screen if you position it right.
Note: When using artillery, scanning the enemy before firing on them increases the damage by quite a bit, as artillery tend to have higher damage then close ranged attacks.
Zone of control exist in the game but is most applicable for space, ZoC means that once you move into a hex adjacent to 2 stack of enemies, you can no longer move in the same turn, so a line of units with one space between them will still stop all enemy units from going through it. Note that on earth, air units are not restricted by ZoC, nor do they create ZoC, therefore only ground units are effected by ZoC on earth, hence you may want to stick with a full line of screens versus space where you want a line with holes in them.
Once you get more experienced with screening tactics (especially combined with anti-beam field and minovsky usage), you can get away with using a low number of screens and still able to cover your artillery. Use close ranged MS like cavalry, hit them when you know you can rout them or if any retaliation from the weakened enemy will not be enough do meaningful damage to the cavalry (especially if is lead by an ace MS). When you get to the point where you can defeat overwhelm odds with little to no losses, you can beat the hardest difficulty very easily.
  • Summary
In any given battle, if you keep in mind all the above (and some in advanced tactics such as garrison) and become experienced in using them, you will beat overwhelming odds in battle with little to no losses. The right unit mix and unit type, proper assignment of officers, good screening and ranged fire, proper timing and usage of close ranged MS, keeping up scanning, minovsky properly without giving too much of its bonus to enemy are all important to how good an kill/loss ratio you achieve. At the end, the only way to get good is to keep playing, experience is most important after all. If these all seem too much, simply learning to abuse MAP weapons will also win you the game easily (refer to nuclear usage, resource management and MAP weapons sections below)

[edit] Advanced tacticsEdit

  • Borrowing units
Certain units have a very low cash: resource ratio, such as the dom cannon which cost 900 credit and 3,000 resource. On average, most Mass-produced MS have ratio close to 1:2 , i.e. 1000 credit and 2000 resource. Keeping in mind that all units can be scrapped for its full resource cost, units with higher resource composition become very attractive as they can be recycled back into more of its cost in resources, assuming that you keep them alive until they become largely obselete. There are plenty of such units for you to explore, a notable example: Zeon's Dross mammoth carrier, which has an outrageous cred: resource ratio, combined with the fact that you are unlikely to lose the 1.5k hitpoint ship (unless you really try) practically means free mammoth carrier as long as you keep a bunch of resource on deposit.
  • Resource management - good and evil
Resource management for good team is a no-brainer whereas evil takes abit more thought to maximize the benefit. At first glane, 100% lawful gives you 20% research, 10,000 cred and resource every 10 turns while evil gets nothing. However, for evil you can go crazy on raiding for cash and resource, in addition to taking over neutral territories. Finally, evil gets to use colony drop and nuclear weapons with impunity. In general, evil tend to unlock better / more pilots for more scenarios (not always, see the wiki page on pilot alignment unlock for details). For evil, the method to maximizing income is to perpetually keep your alignment from 0-15%, note that when you hit 0-10% your people will riot, what this means is that you cannot initiate any plan while the riot is going on (except for the "pacify riot" plan). there are 2 levels of raid project that give you 3,000 credit / resources and 5,000 credit / resource respectively, 3k project cost you 5% alignment whereas 5k project cost you 10% alignment, as you cannot go below 0%, the trick is to activate all 4 plans for 8k credit and 8k resource the moment you can do all 4 at a whooping penalty of 30% alignment, usually this is when your at 15% or so, you will drop back to 0% and you can wait until all 4 plans are available (usually at 15%). In detail, the 3k raid is always available, whereas the 5k raid is available in 5 turns interval (i.e. 5 turns on, 5 turns off, 5 turn on) when you are evil, hence usually you have to wait a couple turns after coming out of the 0-10% riot stage before you see the 5k raid project. Therefore your cash cycle comes once every 15 turns or so, with 4-5 turns out of that where you can do other projects you need (such as resource -> credit, nuclear weapon, colony laser / drop ...etc)
Be aware that using nuclear weapons will reset your alignment to 0% (I believe it is -10% per use in battle?) so if possible, time it so you use it like crazy when your alignment is 0 - 4%. Finally, if there are neutral territories, you can capture them and hold them for 4 turns the moment you hit 0%, as you do not lose any time (you have to wait 4-5 turns anyway after the riot ends) and the neutral territories have very high credit / resource income.
For reference, nuclear weapon is extremely game-breaking (more so then MAP weapon, except for GP-03 which is as broken as nuclear), so if you are having trouble with the game, nuclear and MAP options are good crutches to lean on.
  • Ace rotation system
One rule when assigning ace: Always keep them in the non-assigned pool until they are needed! The only exception is the main Zeon / EFSF campaigne where you have aces and officers by the dozens (although it is still good form to use proper rotation to share out exp evenly). Mastering this will allow you to amplify your fighting power and share out exp better. Assigning ace to defensive garrison is one of the most wasteful ways to use them as they tend to sit idle often. Only assign them to attacking forces where they will be used in battle immediately, and incidentally you can control how exp is distributed better. As for defense, refer to "Garrison and central defense node" below for more details on the idea of Buffer Zone and Rapid Response force.


To summarize defensive assignment of aces, ensure that you keep a buffer zone around a strategic zone (either factory or chokepoint), meaning one extra zone spread out in all direction. Next keep 1-3 units on the border zones capable of stalling until the next turn (one ground + one flight + one water if applicable is a good mix), next keep a rapid response force in the strategic zone that should include 2 or more transport (or a carrier for that matter) filled with your favoured combat mix, for me that would be 3-6 artillery MS + 1-2 ace MS + 1-2 tank MS, throw in supporting radar planes and some screens and your good to go. The idea is that whenever enemy attack your border zone, you stall for a turn and bring in the appropiate amount of forces next turn from your strategic zone where you keep your rapid response force to take care of it, incidentally this will allow you to assign ace/s to the reinforcement. For a more indepth explanation of this tactic please refer to below.
  • Anti-beam field
  • MIRV screening
  • Nuclear usage
In general there are 1 nuclear unit each for Zeon and EFSF, the GP-02 gundam and Zaku II C nuclear armament, for most scenarios they can only be researched when project is initiated (Zeon and EFSF main campaign gets it in story events), available when your alignment is very very low. They have RNG 2-3 (If i remember correctly, haven't used them in a long time) attack that is selectable from the special action button, and you may attack any hex in range, including empty ones. When used, the target and all surrounding hex gets hit by a devastating attack capable of one-shotting midgame MP units and crippling late game MP units (ace unit, MA and carrier fares better, often times taking no damage), this is a superior area of effect compared to MAP weapons which hits 5 hex in a straight line (with the exception to the broken as hell GP-03 MA mode). Keep in mind that the weapon can only be fired before you move the unit, hence you have to wait for their horde to come into range, often times this means that they focus fire on your nuclear units and wipe them out (seeing as you'd only want to use them in massive battles .... right?). For GP-02, what you can do is cover it in anti-beam field, stick a tank or two in front of it (GM II or III works) and screen it with core boosters, you may want 2-3 such stacks behind a line of core boosters and make sure every stack is protected by anti-beam fields, (also remember that mutliple nuclear unit in the same stack do NOT work, only one unit will fire), a single round of 2-3 nuclear blast when enemy is packed in front of your (dead) screens will cripple them. On earth, the same tactic with minus anti-beam field will work, though less prettily then in space.


For Zaku II nuke, the same tactics work, in addition to another one viable only with Zaku II. First, build 1 or 2 of the cheapest destroyer (the ones that can detach its bridge as a shuttle), detach its bridge shuttle and replenish the destroyer next turn for another if you need more. Next, put precisely a single unit of nuclear zaku inside. Voila, that's all you to initate a well positioned nuclear strike. Ram the shuttle into their main force, careful you don't get shoot down by super fast stray units (like how there's usually 2-3 super fast MA that precedes the main body of 30+ units), take out any preceding fast units, and throw the shuttle right in the thick of it. The shuttle will get shot down, and out pops the nuclear zaku at halved life, right in the face of the enemy fleet, I think you can figure out what to do from there (Expect to lose the zaku, but they're cheap enough ...). The pros with this method is that you don't need to plan position and make pretty formations to set up the firing position, and they are so easy to use that they do very well in smaller battles against 10+ units, finally they can be controlled better at where you want to shoot it compare to the "wait behind screens" tactics . Set up a bunch of missiles and distribute them to your forces, keep spares around (they are cheap enough) and use as needed. Bring 3 or more missiles into a big battles is recommended, you don't have to use them all.
  • Use and defense against MAP weapons
  • Garrison, Rapid response force and periodic weeding on enemy forces
In general, the idea is to use minimal amount of force to hold onto the maximum area, as the computer out-produces you by a lot you may feel overwhelmed by constant attacks by overwhelming forces. You want to make the most of the 5-turn combat / round and reinforcement system in this game. The key point is therefore to identify choke points and plan your expansion to include defensive buffer zones. Strategic Zones that are adjacent to many border zones make the best garrison, as a rapid response force there can reinforce most or all of your border zone in that sector.
Identifying chokepoints in space should be a no brainer therefore most of the focus will be put on earth. One rule of thumb is NOT to keep the garrison (or rapid response force, in our case) in the border zone, but instead put it in a strategic zone that can reinforce multiple border zone. All border zone should have 1-3 units (1 air + 1 ground + 1 water if applicable is good) capable of stalling for 5 turns, allowing reinforcement to come in on turn 6 from the strategic zone. Theres multiple reason for this: a) enemy will attack you with just enough forces to overwhelm your defense, so the less units you have defending, the weaker the attack. You can put more units to lure in bigger invasions also. b) you can rotate in aces to the rapid defense force rather then permanently assigning ace to a garrison, this helps you stretch out ace utility and exp sharing much better (especially for non-main campaigne where aces are in short supply). c) with a single garrison force you can hold multiple border zone up to a whole frontier indefinitely.
For more advanced malipulation of enemy offense, you can increase your border garrison to increase the size of the invasion force if your rapid response force can handle it with no loss for population control or exp farming for aces. For certain campaignes, you may isolate enemies home base but unable to invade as they have bases elsewhere you have to finish first, in such instance you do not want their forces in their home base to build up (or maybe you do, if you enjoy big epic battles of 100+ units vs 100+ units, try not to abuse MAP weapons *cough*) so you can either weed out their forces by keeping a appropiately sized bait force next to their base with a reinforcement just behind, or you can allow them to grab a buffer zone. You can repeatedly attack their buffer zone with a small elite strike force (your best ace suits), enemy will bring in forces which it calculates can overwhelm you, though A.I. computation of forces seem to ignore the multiplier in the form of aces and the synergy achieved between artillery and screens, hence the forces you bring should be a compact elite force that can beat them without losing anything more then screens at most (and you can build great exp for ace too). Keep in mind if enemy base are low in units it will not reinforce and may give up the buffer zone, which is fine, as the purpose is to keep their units low, they'll come out and play again when they have build their forces back up.
Moving onto an actual example of good strategic defense position. On certain campaigne it is advantageous to stall until you tech up, and you want to ensure you have good defensive position to do so. On earth a good set up might be: North America + Hawaii without alaska. You have two strategic zone, California and Mid-America, from where you can reinforce the border zone: Hawaii, Canada, Mexico and New York. You can control the border garrison at those 4 zones to control the size of enemy invasions. Planning your expansion, a rational path might be to take both ocean zone to the East (Altantic), take iceland, Belfast (England) and all the way to Odessa, capture all zones around Odessa. Now your strategic zones changes to: California, North altantic (ocean MS) and Odessa. Only 3 rapid response forces are needed at this point, up from 2 previously. Once you get a feel for how this works you'll be able to plan your garrison and defensive position easily from any positions.
There are instances where enemy mix of units are so fast and powerful that it is difficult to stall for five turns, such as the Zssa' booster or other fast water MS on mostly water maps. In these cases you can experiment with the mix of units that is capable of stalling, keeping in mind to minimize unit force and as little loss as possible. Sometimes a single tin cod will mean enemy won't even send a single Zssa (sometimes), and sometimes maybe a trio of mazella tank turret can stall out with the sacrifice of 1-2 units, other cases may have you using a single carrier or MA (like the zeon water MA, great survival even when being hit especially when sitting on a depot for repair) to stall / tank out their invasion. And sometimes you could just give up the zone if you have an elite strike force reinforcement ready to retake it next turn.

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