Battlecruiser 3000AD – Tour Of Duty 1

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6.2 TOD1 M1/5 – Diplomatic Escort (Majoris)

6.2.1 Overview

  • Start location: Earth, Sol.
  • Pre-mission time: None.
  • Mission duration: 45 minutes.
  • Primary objective: Diplomat1 must dock at Majoris, Alpha Majora.
  • Rewards: 250 experience points.
  • Artifacts: Hyperion Subspace Device available around this time.
  • Time till next mission: 15 minutes.

6.2.2 Events

There are three ships heading towards Majoris: Terran Diplomat1, Empirian Diplomat2, and Vesperon Diplomat3. Diplomat2 and 3 are being escorted by other ships, and aren’t your responsibility. Diplomat1 will launch from Galcom HQ shortly after the start of the mission, and heads to Majoris. There are no specific threats, however Diplomat1 passes a hostile station in Tau Ceti.

6.2.3 Artifact: Hyperion Subspace Device

At the start of the mission you will get a message “Intel reports an artifact on a ship in Vega Eridani.” The ship is the Droidan military Nightstar UCV-Molonok. The ship starts in Obsidia, Vega Eridani. (In theory it moves to neighboring regions, however I have always found it in Obsidia – I suspect it cannot find a way out.) Your ship will only autopilot you as far as Droia, Vega Eridani. After that you must make the jump through the Flux Fields manually, first to Alteris, then to Obsidia. In my experience these two flux fields will either deliver you to the intended destination, or leave you where you are – if the later happens, simply try to jump again until you make it through. You can short-cut this route by travelling through FL-13 in Tarean, Alpha Canis to SN-10, and hence through the wormhole to Obsidia – however this involves a risk of reaching a blackhole. The artifact can be mugged by targeting the carrier, pressing V to reveal the cargo, then issuing the order Command Menu–Target Target–SC-n Collect. The carrier can also be destroyed, but such an action cancels the alliance between Droidan and Terran.

The Hyperion Subspace Device will light up the HSD text on the left-hand side of the bridge view. One then selects any location from the menu and the ship jumps straight there without using jump points or other conventional navigation. A similar feature is added to Tacops, except that it allows you to view any region, much like a probe. Unfortunately, your Research Engineer must have an AI of 75 or more to use it. At the start of the game she is probably struggling to count to 75 😉 …with an AI of around 20. Consequently, the Hyperion Subspace Device is of no use early in the game. This is discussed further under The AI problem above. The Hyperion Subspace Device is very useful once the requirements are met, which is why I think it is worth trying to pick it up now.

6.2.4 Strategy

The mission itself is relaxed, so long as you have played before – if not, quit now and take the Tutorial above. The escort itself can be provided by interceptors. Keep an eye on the interceptors, because there is a chance they will be damaged when passing through Tau Ceti. The trip should be otherwise uneventful, giving your rookie pilots some experience, and, most importantly allows you to concentrate on other things.

What other things? You need to be able to fund future operations, and upgrade your battlecruiser, so you must make money. Your battlecruiser needs upgrades – importantly, you need to stop it haemorrhaging fuel during jumps, which means upgrading the reactor/engine combination as soon as possible. Lastly this mission is the best time to procure the Hyperion Subspace Device.

Before launching sell almost all your spares, even consider selling Iridium, some Food and missiles. You do not need them for this mission. Split the cash proceeds between trading funds and engine/reactor upgrades. The trading funds will be used to keep a shuttle running around a few stations in Sol, making 10-30% profit margins by trading AD items from Galcom HQ to either Genesis (Moon) or Gazer1 (Pluto), and bringing HT items back. The best engine (Numega) is affordable as a first upgrade. The best reactor (Trellis) is rather too expensive, so consider a mid-range upgrade first, such as an Eyestar. After launch two engineering teams should immediately be set to work on both upgrades. The combination of Numega and Eyestar will only use 15 Radine per jump, rather than 55 without upgrades.

In order to grab the Hyperion Subspace Device and still have time to get into position for the next mission (ideally Alpha Centauri), you should leave for Vega Eridani within the first few minutes of this mission – at about the same time the Diplomat leaves for Majoris. This will mean travelling in a very underpowered ship. However, there should be no hostile shipping until you reach Tau Ceti, by which time your upgrades should be more-or-less complete. An alternative involves piloting a shuttle remotely, and using that to recover the artifact. While possible, this takes a lot of effort or time spent away from the battlecruiser.

If you have been keeping your trading-shuttle busy, you should have enough credits by the end of the mission to buy most of the other upgrades. Send a shuttle out to buy them from one of the friendly stations on route as you make your way back up from Vega Eridani.

You may also wish to deploy mining drones on Earth at the start of the mission. This will give some extra credits later, for the minimum of effort. There are many other preparations one may make depending on preference. For example, launch a probe to in Earth region – this allows the status of Galcom HQ to be monitored, and is handy for ordering support craft.

6.3 TOD1 M2/5 – Diplomatic Security (Majoris)

6.3.1 Overview

  • Start location: Xylan, Tau Ceti.
  • Pre-mission time: 5 minutes.
  • Mission duration: 30 minutes.
  • Primary Objective: Diplomat4 must dock at Majoris, Alpha Majora.
  • Secondary Objective: Diplomat5 and Diplomat6 must dock at Majoris, Alpha Majora.
  • Rewards: 250 experience points.
  • Artifacts: None.
  • Time till next mission: 15 minutes.

6.3.2 Events

Three ships will leave different stations at the start and head towards Majoris: Terran Diplomat4 from Galcom HQ, Earth, Sol; Vesperon Diplomat5 from Ramix, Ramis, Omicron Eridani; and Empirian Diplomat6 from Aleri, Tramis, Alpha Centauri. The primary threat is an Insurgent Warmonger which starts in Treas, Alpha Centauri – on the route of Diplomat4 and Diplomat6.

6.3.3 Strategy

Ideally you should engage the Insurgent Warmonger in Treas, Alpha Centauri at the start of the mission. Engaging the Warmonger early removes the primary threat to Diplomat4 and Diplomat6, and allows you to deal with it before it jumps into Arima, Tau Ceti. Once in Arima, fighters will join the battle and it becomes slightly harder. The hostile station in Arima will launch fighters to engage the Diplomats. While these are not a major threat, there is a risk that they will damage one or more of the Diplomats. Consider sending some interceptors through to the Diplomats as cover, or using your battlecruiser to keep the enemy fighters busy. Remember the mission critical ship is Diplomat4. The destruction of Diplomat5 or Diplomat6 will only cost you 100 experience points and won’t ‘fail’ the mission. There is no need to attack the station in Arima. Equally, there is no need to destroy every last fighter. Once the Diplomats are safe, I suggest you use the down-time towards the end of the mission for upgrading, repairs, and/or sweeping debris fields. Stay within a few sectors of Majoris.

6.4 TOD1 M3/5 – Diplomatic Escort (Majoris)

6.4.1 Overview

  • Start location: Majoris, Alpha Majora.
  • Pre-mission time: 5 minutes.
  • Mission duration: 45 minutes.
  • Primary Objective: Diplomat7 must dock at Starpath, Mars, Sol.
  • Rewards: 250 experience points.
  • Artifacts: None.
  • Time till next mission: 15 minutes.

6.4.2 Events

Three diplomat ships will leave Majoris at the start of the mission. You only need to ensure that Terran Diplomat7 reaches its destination. There are no specific threats. You receive an SOS from Vesperon Diplomat8 in Midae, Omicron Eridani. In some games that is all that happens. In other games you will receive the message “Vesperon Diplomat8 destroyed by the Empirians” and a request to investigate immediately. Your primary objective is still to get Diplomat7 home safely.

6.4.3 Strategy

The escort of Diplomat7 should be easy. Arima will probably be the only threat on route. There is a good chance you will have dealt with most of its fighter fleet already in the course of earlier missions. I suggest you assign an interceptor to guide Diplomat7 home and leave your battlecruiser in the Arima area.

The second part of the mission is unexpected. You can tow the disabled Diplomat8 using a shuttle (it seems too big to be towed by your battlecruiser). You can tow the Diplomat8 to Eridani station. Consider remote-ordering a shuttle to do this, merely switching to it for the final docking at Eridani. If you only send a shuttle, consider an interceptor escort. If you are lucky, you can reach Diplomat8 before it is attacked by a cloaked ship. Once the Diplomat is attacked, there is very little you do to defend it. After it is destroyed you are asked to investigate. Investigation is a pointless distraction from the primary objective. At best you may spot a certain Nightstar carrier exiting the area. There are no experience points or violations related to the rescue, destruction, or investigation of Diplomat8, and whatever you do the next mission happens in the same way. Treat the Diplomat8 incident as background story.

Use the downtime towards the end of this mission to finish upgrades and stock up on fuel, parts and other supplies. I recommend you finish within a jump or two of Eori, Tau Ceti, which gives you more options during the next mission.

6.5 TOD1 M4/5 – Operation Hostile Takeover (Zerin)

6.5.1 Overview

  • Start location: Eori, Tau Ceti.
  • Pre-mission time: 5 minutes.
  • Mission duration: 60 minutes.
  • Primary Objective: Zerin station must be captured.
  • Rewards: 2500 experience points and Combat Shield medal.
  • Artifacts: None.
  • Time till next mission: 15 minutes.

6.5.2 Events

If you do nothing except wait in Eori from the start of the mission, the following should happen – times in minutes from mission start, subject to some variation:

  • 00:10: GCV-Vagabond arrives in Arima, cloaks, and launches fighter patrol.
  • 00:12: GCV-Vagabond arrives in Eori. Karl Reines beams aboard, transferring Fleet Command and Control.
  • 00:13: GCV-Vagabond launches fighter/mine laying patrol to Midae (two Zenstars and Viper).
  • 00:16: Patrols return to GCV-Vagabond.
  • 00:17: GCV-Vagabond sends takeover team to Zerin (Shuttle with two S-Fighter escorts).
  • 00:27: Zerin “systems disabled”. After this point, Zerin will not attempt to defend itself from anyone.

You must now capture the station before the end of the mission. There is nothing explicitly to tell you to do this except the overall mission objective. None of the other ships will perform the capture. “Disabled” and “capture” are not the same thing – the station needs to be controlled to the Terran Military and show as a bright green contact on the radar. Once the station has been captured, the GCV-Vagabond will arrest those on the station, and 5 minutes later will evacuate.

6.5.3 Strategy

Capturing the station is easy because it is not hostile. Fly straight to it and blast away for a few minutes until it issues an SOS, then dock to and capture it (also see the Station capture tutorial above). There is no need to wait until the GCV-Vagabond has done anything. The fastest way to complete the mission is to capture Zerin right at the start, although if you want to gain Fleet Command and Control, do not capture the station within the first 10 minutes, or else you will never see the GCV-Vagabond, and never have Karl Reines beam aboard.

Various enemy ships, including carriers, will enter the region from time to time. Without upgrades, these battles could be quite tough, but with an upgraded battlecruiser you should not have a problem – just remain alert. If you wait until the Zerin’s systems are disabled (half way through the mission), the station will stop firing at anyone, including enemies. It will slowly take damage from enemy craft, but is unlikely to be destroyed in this way.

Once Karl Reines beams aboard you will get access to Fleet Command and Control. This is explained in more depth below. You cannot use it to direct the GCV-Vagabond, which you cannot see. If you have probe coverage of somewhere like Earth, you can launch support ships (even battlecruisers) to help you in Zerin. What you take from stations now will not be available later. Emptying Galcom HQ to form your own personal fleet with which to destroy a handful of enemy fighters may seem like a good idea now. When Galcom HQ has been pounded into space-dust a few hours down the line because you took all its defenses away, this may seem like a poor strategy. Instead, use the Fleet Command and Control access you have throughout most of this mission and the next to learn the basics of fleet control. If possible, take ships from Zerin. Zerin is not especially useful in subsequent parts of the ACM.

6.5.4 Fleet Command and Control

When Karl Reines beams aboard you will gain Fleet Command and Control. You must also have your Communications and Tactical Officers On-Station and associated battlecruiser systems working. This allows you to order almost any order-able asset owned by the Terran Military that you can currently see in your battlecruiser’s Tacops (in the current sector, or via probes), or you have recently ordered.

Assuming you have already captured Zerin, in Tacops left-click on the station. You will see a list of craft and missiles, which you can order as if they were your own. (If you see no list, enable Launches and Weapons under Systems Controls – these are disabled by GCV-Vagabond’s takeover team.) For example, you can order Cruiser–Solnar–Defend BC, and a Solnar will launch and escort your battlecruiser. Once launched, new orders can be assigned by left-clicking on the craft. Carriers under your control allow further craft to be launched in a similar way. At the bottom of the left-click list are a set of System Controls, which allow certain automatic systems to be toggled on and off, for example and ability to cloak or launch craft. These controls simply give the option for the ship or station to do something, they do not instruct it to do it. Orders can also be issued by left-clicking Fleet from the right-hand side of the Tacops screen. This adds the ability to re-order recently ordered craft, thereby allowing you to control vessels you have ordered to jump into a region you have no direct Tacops coverage of.

Craft ordered via Fleet Command and Control will return to the nearest friendly station once Fleet Command and Control is lost. At this stage in the ACM you only have temporary control whilst Karl Reines is aboard. Do not build up your own personal battle-fleet expecting it to remain with you forever, because it won’t.

6.6 TOD1 M5/5 – Operation Grab (DaisyMae)

6.6.1 Overview

  • Start location: Lyrius, Sirius.
  • Pre-mission time: 5 minutes.
  • Mission duration: 45 minutes.
  • Primary Objective: Detain Walid K’lar, commander of DaisyMae.
  • Rewards: 1500 experience points and Star of Merit medal.
  • Artifacts: Tacyon Anagram Shield. Celestial Orb available around this time.
  • Time till next mission: 15 minutes.

6.6.2 Events

The DaisyMae appears in Canaan, Omicron Eridani, and heads towards Trenis. You may receive an SOS signal from it as it passes through Midae. Once you find the ship, Walid K’lar will beam across and primary objective will be met. If the DaisyMae reaches Antis, Trenis, it is quite likely it will be attacked and destroyed.

6.6.3 Strategy

Do not be concerned by the mission’s start location. Stay in close to where the last mission finished, and you will be ideally placed to find the DaisyMae. This mission only becomes hard if you race to the mission start point of Lyrius in Sirius – that is you spend most of the mission going round in circles looking for the ship. Ensure you get both of the artifacts – the first from the DaisyMae itself, the second on another ship in the area – see below. Consider using this mission to rest some of your crew – keep the Research Engineer available to deal with the artifacts, and the System Engineering team ready to install the Tacyon Anagram Shield – you will need it soon. You retain Fleet Command and Control until the end of this mission, although you do not need it.

6.6.4 Artifact: Tacyon Anagram Shield

The Tacyon Anagram Shield is being transported by the DaisyMae. Once you have Walid K’lar on your ship, you may mug or attack the DaisyMae to recover the item (and a few other goods). It may not possible to recover the artifact if the DaisyMae reaches Antis.

The Tacyon Anagram Shield is installed like any other upgrade. It will raise the shield value of your ship to 5000, and reduces Plutonium usage.

6.6.5 Artifact: Celestial Orb

During this mission you may receive the message “Intel reports an artifact on a ship in Omicron Eridani” – I think your Tactical Officer needs to be On-Station to get the message. The artifact, the Celestrial Orb, is on the Syrion military Violon UCV-Zerovna, which starts in Raimis and patrols the space between there and Arima in Tau Ceti. Destroying the ship changes diplomatic relations between Syrion and Terran to be neutral, so if possible mug it.

The Orb has various healing properties, primarily to restore lost Life Factor of injured crew faster than normal. The manual’s appendix C claims “their fatigue factor (FF) will never increase.” While the Orb certainly reduces the rate at which crew become fatigued, it does not eliminate fatigue. The Orb only works on crew onboard the battlecruiser, not those in support craft. No installation is required, just keep it in your battlecruiser’s cargo hold.

Index: Battlecruiser 3000AD FAQ ·