Wheel

Orbits (Lupus) Wheel walk-through, completed in 2:15.3

Original Approach

The first approach I developed was capturing three planets in a row, as you can see in the video below, capturing these planets isn’t a problem, the problem arises when they come around to the orange station. If the orange station has captured all of its planets, and promoted its double planet, then they will attack my three planets and prevent me from building up enough forces to get a good time, or from winning altogether.

New Approach

After playing my old way for quite a while, I noticed that my best times where when orange would capture two planets on the wheel, then when my three planets came around to its station, it wasn’t ready to attack. The problem was that orange wouldn’t do this very often. I needed a new approach that encouraged orange to do what I wanted. My new approach does just that, it encourages orange to make its initial two captures on the wheel.

There are two variations on this new approach, the first is when purple captures its lower singleton planet. In the video below you can see that after capturing the first planet, use the units generated by that planet to attack the orange top-rear planet, this is to prevent orange from using the two planets that it will have at that time from capturing that top-rear planet. Ideally, what you want to happen is for orange to capture a second planet on the wheel.

 

The second variation is when purple’s initial capture is the singleton above it. If you use the same approach as in variation #1 above, then purple will quite often use those two planets to capture the singleton on the wheel between your two planets. In the video below you can see that when this happens you should send units from your initial planet to this singleton prior to attacking the orange top rear singleton. Then when the singleton on the wheel gets even with the purple front planet, you redirect the units attacking the singleton on the wheel to the double that is just coming into range of the two purple planets. You can see this in the video below.

 

Bringing it all together

Once you can coerce orange into capturing two planets on the wheel (or in promoting its double on the wheel), then you need a strategy for which planets to capture and a method to use for destroying your opponents. My strategy is presented in the video below.

 

Walk-through

  1. From 0:00 to 0:24, here I used variation #2 shown above to coerce orange to capture two planets on the wheel.
  2. From 0:25 to 0:39, next you need to capture the singleton between you and orange. Keep sending units from both of your wheel planets even after capturing the singleton. This is to discourage purple from attacking you.
  3. From 0:40 to 0:52, here I’m trying to promote both doubles, but I mistakenly send the units from the stationary singleton into the singleton on the wheel instead of the double. Sometimes my best approaches are mistakes, as I now try to do this whenever it is an option. Quite often at this point green has already captured that singleton. If that is the case, you don’t have to have that planet for this approach to work. I have many times below 2:20 where I didn’t capture this singleton.
  4. From 0:53 to 0:57, next you need to capture the singleton between your two doubles. After this capture I went into attack mode, I probably should have promoted my other double on the wheel, but this was the first time I had captured the wheel planets in this way.
  5. From 0:58 to 1:20, time to wipe out purple. You’ll notice that I don’t attack purple immediately, instead I’m just sending the units in that direction. I’m trying to give purple every chance to attack the green planet on the wheel.
  6. From 1:21 to 1:42, time to take out green. I used to capture some of the planets I destroyed on the purple and green stations. But, when green and orange are fairly balanced it is best to just destroy the purple and green planets. You’ll notice at 1:31 I attack the green double on the wheel that has been weakened by orange. This is just a target of opportunity. I only go after a planet like this if its been weakened.
  7. From 1:43 to 2:06, now it’s time for orange. Even though I’m attacking orange I notice that green is trying to capture another planet, so I send some units there to prevent that capture.

It isn’t typical to get done destroying orange and only have one planet remaining on the wheel. But you sure can get a better time when that is the case.

There are quite a few situations where I just give up. The situations where I do are presented below.

Continue reading “Wheel”

Crush, Revisited

Shockwaves (Taurus) Crush walk-through, completed in 2:06.4

My initial approach to Crush was to capture all of my planets and then mass my units and attack, destroy and capture the rear green planet prior to the shock wave passing. It had to be the green rear planet, since the orange rear planet is not as accessible.

This new approach came about partially from trying something new and partially from making a mistake in what I was trying to do. In my previous approach with Crush, after the shock wave passed it was only me and orange, and orange would nave more units than me since I had just used mine in destroying green. The something new I tried was destroying the orange double planet prior to the shock wave passing, then using my remaining units to destroy or at least degrade the green double planet. This worked really well and I got my best time ever.

Then one time while destroying the orange double planet, I accidentally captured it. I thought of giving up at that point, but I’m glad I didn’t since I set another low time for myself. With this approach orange has to do some work to destroy the planet I captured, and then it captures and promotes that planet, using up some more units. Because of this orange is depleted after the shock wave passes. In this weakened state it is much easier to destroy.

Walk-through

  1. From 0:00 to 0:40, the initial captures.
  2. From 0:41 to 0:56, position your units for an attack on the green rear double planet. When the shock wave gets close you need to destroy and capture the planet. Then you need to get any extra units out of there before the shock wave destroys them.
  3. From 0:57 to 1:12, now you want to mass your units in preparation for taking out and capturing the orange double planet.
  4.  From 1:13 to 1:18, when orange makes a move to defend the center triple planet, you need to destroy and capture its double planet.
  5. From 1:19 to 1:24, now you want to destroy the green double planet. More likely than not you won’t be able to destroy it, but you’ll be able to weaken it enough so that it is easier to destroy after the shock wave passes.
  6. From 1:25 to 1:41, you want to take out all of the green planets.

At this point it is you against a weakened orange. I start by attacking the rear double planet first as that has worked best for me.


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Garrison

Gas Giants (Leo) Garrison walk-through, completed in 2:04.1

The leaderboard for Garrison is broken on android, at least it is for me. The leaderboard displays results in reverse order, so the slowest time is #1 and you have to page through everyone to see who has the best score. That is not something I’m going to do. On iOS, the leaderboard works correctly, which is nice.

The approach to use on Garrison is simple, set up where you can build up enough units to destroy an opponents gas giant as soon as it promotes itself, while you are also positioning units to destroy the other opponents gas giant just as it promotes. If you do this correctly, and the opponents cooperate, you’ll have the opponents positioned next to each other where they are likely to attack each other instead of you.

Walk-through

  1. From 0:00 to 0:32, after doubling up your initial planet, attack and capture the singleton next to one of your opponents. I usually attack the one next to orange, but either one should work. I always like it when both orange and green make their first capture on the same side of the screen, bringing their units closer to contact.
  2. From 0:33 to 0:55, my best times seem to come when orange makes this move to capture the center planet. It gets them closer to green and delays the promotion of their triple planet, which is good. While that is happening you need to finish your initial captures and promote the gas giant to a triple to give you more firepower.
  3. From 0:56 to 1:06, now you need to mass your units on the singleton next to the orange gas giant. When you get enough there to take out and capture the gas giant, start massing them on the green side to prepare for an attack over there.
  4. From 1:07 to 1:24, as soon as orange promotes the gas giant to a triple, you need to take it out and capture it. Meanwhile, keep on massing your units for the attack on the green gas giant.
  5. From 1:25 to 1:31, as soon as the green gas giant promotes itself you need to destroy and capture it.

How things play out from here depend on your opponents. I like to wait until they make a move to attack each other and then attack the planet they just made weaker. And of course, the sooner you take out their doubles, the better.


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Helix

Orbits (Lupus) Helix walk-through, completed in 1:48.4

With Helix I used to think I needed to promote all of the doubles I captured, believing I needed them at full strength. Now I don’t promote them and instead capture as many planets as possible. My thought with this is to get all the planets captured as quickly as possible, in order to try and get the opponents attacking each other sooner.

I intentionally leave the center planet alone. If I do capture it, the opponents are likely to attack it. And, if its left unoccupied, the opponents will occasionally fight over it, and that is when I get my best times.

Walk-through

  1. From 0:00 to 0:07, I start out with an attack on the double next to green. I have no intention of capturing that planet, but I want green to double up. The reason for this is now greens next move will almost always be to capture the double next to it. If I had allowed its initial capture to be that double planet, then those two planets would most likely capture a planet I want to capture.
  2. From 0:08 to 0:49, the initial captures are almost complete, and this is the first benefit of capturing the planets I did. Orange is moving in between the three green planets and there is no way green can resist attacking.
  3. From 0:50 to 0:59, now all of the planets except the center planet are occupied by someone.
  4. From 1:00 to 1:04, time to start destroying some opponents. You’ll notice that green is making a move to capture the center planet. Occasionally green and orange will fight over that center planet. Orange doesn’t cooperate here.
  5. From 1:05 to 1:17, destroying the green outer planets. If orange had fought green for the center planet, it wouldn’t have had the excess of units it used here to destroy one of my planets.
  6. From 1:18 to 1:27, destroy the last outer orange planet.
  7. From 1:27 to 1:39, first I destroy the orange double and then move my units to the side. What I was trying here was to have orange move to recapture the planet I just destroyed, which they did, What I really wanted though, was for green to then attack orange. Some times that works and then I can just destroy green.

Since green didn’t cooperate, I had to go ahead and destroy them both.


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Freeway

Speed (Monoceros), Freeway walk-through, completed in 1:25.7

When you first start playing Freeway you’ll notice that the opponents will seem to do nothing for long stretches of time. You know you could get a better time if they would just hurry up and attack.

It finally occurred to me that they are building up their forces to try and capture an empty planet. You can usually tell which one they are after and you can use an attack on that planet to prompt them to give up on that planet and go elsewhere.

Walk-through

  1. From 0:00 to 0:08, here I’m trying to get both planets to give up on that center triple planet, neither fall for the fake.
  2. From 0:09 to 0:34, time to give up the fake and capture my initial planets.
  3. From 0:35 to 0:37, that orange singleton seems to be trying to build up enough units to go after the top left triple planet. I use an attack on that planet to get it to give up and bring their units more to the middle and closer to green.
  4. From 0:38 to 0:59, time to capture the singleton above greens double planet, then destroy and capture its double planet.
  5. From 1:00 to 1:12, it seems as if orange is once again preparing for an attack on the top left triple planet. At 1:05 a fake attack on that triple planet gets orange to give up and attack green instead. After orange goes after green you should mass your units on a single planet in preparation for your attack.
  6. From 1:13 to 1:25, time to attack the orange double planet and then take out the rest of the orange planets.

Here I was fortunate that the orange attack on the green triple planet was strong enough to destroy the planet, but not strong enough to capture it.


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Cloister

White Holes (Virgo) Cloister walk-through, completed in 1:41.8

Cloister is good example of forcing your opponents to do what you want. Using an attack through the walls, you can get your opponents to move their units in a way that helps you.

Walk-through

  1. From 0:00 to 0:20, capture the double immediately below you and start attacking the singleton cloistered within the walls. The walls will stop your attack, but you need them in the vicinity when the walls change.
  2. From 0:21 to 0:42, when the walls come down you need to capture both singletons near the white hole and then begin promoting the double you previously captured.
  3. From 0:43 to 1:04, finish promoting both of your double planets, then you need to use your units to attack first one opponent and then the other. These attacks are through the walls, but the opponents should still react and move units in as reinforcements. This will bring those units into the area that will be within the walls when they change. The hope here is that the opponents will attack each other and wipe out most of these units.
  4. From 1:05 to 1:24, when the walls come down you want to trigger the white hole. How the opponents attack each other will determine how you destroy their planets. In this case, orange was attacking, so I started with orange. After destroying the orange double planet, you need to leave enough units there to destroy the orange double planet that is outside the wall.

When the walls come down you just need to finish destroying the remaining planets.


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Crush

Shockwaves (Taurus) Crush walk-through, completed in 2:14.4

With Crush, you have to capture your initial planets and then attack the green rear planets. The reason it has to be green is you have access to its rear double planet. Because of the angles involved, you can’t access orange’s rear double planet as easily. Prior to the shock wave passing you need to destroy, capture and promote the green rear double and then destroy and capture the green singleton closest to your forces.

Walk-through

  1. From 0:00 to 0:36, the initial captures, by not doubling up the front double at this time, there will be more units available to destroy, capture and promote the green back double planet.
  2. From 0:37 to 0:59, position your units for an attack on the green rear double planet. When the shock wave gets close you need to destroy, capture and promote the double planet. Here I didn’t quite get it promoted.
  3. From 1:00 to 1:03, now you can promote your front double planet.
  4. From 1:04 to 1:15, gather your remaining units and destroy and capture the green singleton you have access to. Here I didn’t get it captured, but there are some units in there, which will make it easier to capture after the shock wave passes.
  5. From 1:16 to 1:45, time to complete the capture of the singleton we destroyed, then destroy the green double planet as the shock wave uncovers it. Then destroy the remaining green planet. While doing this you can preposition some units for an attack on the orange rear planet.
  6. From 1:46 to 1:57, as we are destroying the rear orange double planet, they are destroying one of our double planets. This is not necessarily a bad thing. They have to use units to destroy our planet, then they will capture and promote that planet which will use up more of their units.

From here you just need to destroy the remaining orange planets as quickly as possible. It is best for you if orange is promoting its planets, then it only takes you 100 units to destroy 200 or 300 of the orange units.


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