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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Gladiator

Minefields (Andromeda) Gladiator walk-through, completed in 2:29.0

If you had told me it was possible to beat Gladiator in less than 2 minutes and 30 seconds, I wouldn’t have believed you. The best I could do was about about 2 minutes and 45 seconds with my previous approach. When I came back to Gladiator after a long absence, I couldn’t even get the times I had before, so I decided it was time to try another approach. This new approach resulted my best time ever the third time I tried it.

This approach is simple, but you need your opponents to cooperate, which they don’t do all that often. If they decide to attack you instead of another opponent, you won’t get the best time. You’ll notice times in this video where I allow my units to just sit there and accumulate, and then after the opponents start attacking each other I’ll start using my units. This comes from my recognition that the opponents are likely to initiate an attack on a planet that has just weakened itself by removing its units.

Walk-through

  1. From 0:00 to 0:09, your initial move has to be to capture the double planet next to one of your opponents. Then, while those units are in route to the double, start sending any newly created units towards the singleton next to the same opponent. We are trying to force the opponent to send their units towards the right and closer to purple. Surprisingly this works least half the time. This approach works whether the opponent is orange or green, in this video I’m attacking the orange side first.
  2. From 0:10 to 0:22, when the opponent sends their units where we want, you can start using units from both of your planets to capture the singleton. You don’t want to do that too early or your opponent may move to destroy the double planet you just captured. You’ll notice that I don’t continually send units from that double planet to capture the singleton, if you weaken that planet too much orange will use the two planets it now has to destroy and capture your double planet.
  3. From 0:23 to 0:31, you need to get as many units as possible down near the orange double planet, realizing that you can’t weaken the singleton too much or orange will attack.
  4. From 0:32 to 0:40, when orange makes the move to capture the top right double planet you need to use those units you’ve readied to do the attack and release move to get orange to promote their double planet. As soon as they double up, you want to attack with all of your units and destroy and capture that double.
  5.  From 0:41 to 0:45, you want to get your double planets promoted. Notice that I’m not using units from my center planet. If you weaken that planet too much orange will attack and destroy it.
  6. From 0:46 to 0:52, when orange makes the move to promote their double planet, you can use units from the center planet and get both of your doubles promoted.
  7. From 0:53 to 0:58, once your doubles are promoted, start sending units from your center planet to your singleton. This is to discourage orange from attacking it. I don’t keep the units on the center planet at this point because it is such an attractive target, someone is going to attack and destroy it.
  8. From 0:59 to 1:08, You just need to be patient and hopefully your opponents will attack each other. Here I’m waiting for both orange and green to attack someone and weaken themselves on their planets near me. If you move units off of your singleton too soon, it is becomes a target for someone.
  9.  From 1:09 to 1:19, you need to move some units from your double planets and then use them to launch a fake attack on a green singleton in an attempt to get green to move their mass of units off of their double planets. This time the third attack was successful in doing just that.
  10. From 1:20 to 1:24, if you attack the green double planets too soon, it will use those units we just got off of the doubles in their defense. you need to wait until something prompts green to use that mass of units elsewhere. Until then get your units in position for your attack.
  11. From 1:25 to 1:40, as soon as green makes its move you need to destroy, capture and promote its two double planets.
  12. From 1:41 to 1:42, here you need to wait for one of your opponents to attack someone and weaken their singletons next to your planets. In this video it didn’t take long before orange obliged.
  13. From 1:43 to 2:05, after capturing and destroying the orange singleton, I destroyed and captured both of the green singletons. Unfortunately, orange decided to join in on the second singleton.
  14. From 2:06 to 2:11, time to recapture and promote your the planet you started on.
  15. From 2:12 to 2:15, purple is going to attack orange, so you can leave it alone and just attack purple. If you time it right you’ll be attacking purple just as they destroy orange, but before they have enough units to capture the orange planet.

From here, it is just attack and destroy purple, going after its triple planet first. It is fortunate here that the planet where your units are positioned after destroying the purple double planet can use the path through the minefield that purple has created.


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Transverse

Force (Bootes) Transverse walk-through, completed in 1:58.8

When I first started playing Transverse I would always send my forces to the right and start capturing planets on that side. I was getting away from where the opponents were sending their forces, it had to be a good idea to get away from that, right? No, that was not a good idea. Just on a whim I decided to try defending the left side and the first time I tried, I had my best score ever.

Walk-through

  1. From 0:00 to 0:06, send half of the units to one triple, and the other half to the other triple. This doesn’t always work, but when it does, you have bought yourself some time to start building your forces.
  2. From 0:07 to 0:20, after completely promoting your triple planet, you should capture one of the other triples, here I chose the bottom triple that green has access to.
  3. From 0:21 to 0:54, capture and promote the triple. Green has a double on one side of the force field, you have a triple on the other. Your triple should be able to produce enough units to defend against the green double.
  4. From 0:55 to 1:06, capture the two singletons you have access to. When green makes an attack, make sure the triple has enough units to defend itself.
  5. From 1:07 to 1:12, mass your units on the singleton next to orange in preparation for taking it out.
  6. From 1:13 to 1:21, use the attack and release move to get orange to promote itself and make it easier to capture. Then destroy and capture it.
  7. From 1:22 to 1:34, now it’s time to start sending your units down the center force field to get ready to attack your opponents.
  8. From 1:35 to 1:42, you want to take out the orange double first, since they are the strongest opponent and they are also attacking you.

From here it is all about getting your units to the right side to destroy your opponents. I don’t really worry about greens attack on my triple planet. In this video I was lucky that orange destroyed the green singleton and didn’t have enough units left to capture it, which made my job a lot easier.

My initial move isn’t always sending half of the units to one triple planet and the other half to the other triple. In fact, that move doesn’t work very often. Sometimes I just attack and capture one of the triples and allow an opponent to have the other. When doing this you have to simultaneously defend the triple you captured and plan for and destroy the triple the other opponent captured.


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Cincture, Revisited

Shockwaves (Taurus) Cincture walk-through, completed in 2:35.3

I have played Cincture the same way for a long time and was able to get some good times, the approach I used to use can be found here. I’ve developed a new approach that makes a good time easier to achieve. The new approach captures two double planets on the perimeter, gets one of them promoted to double and the other is almost promoted. There is also a feature of this approach that discourages orange from partially capturing a perimeter double planet. This makes it less likely for that perimeter planet to be captured at a later time.

Walk-through

  1. From 0:00 to 0:08, your initial units are sent to capture the perimeter double planet between purple and orange.
  2. From 0:09 to 0:17, after waiting a few seconds, send units from you center planet towards the perimeter double planet between purple and green. Then send any units from you already captured perimeter planet behind purples perimeter planet. When I was first developing this approach I noticed that I would get this perimeter double promoted well before the shock wave arrived. It seemed that if I could peel some units off early on, they could be put to better use on the other perimeter double.
  3. From 0:18 to 0:22, the units from the perimeter double between purple and orange are sent towards the perimeter double between orange and green. This causes orange to give up on capturing that planet. When orange sends its units elsewhere, those units are brought back into the perimeter double to start the promotion process.
  4.  From 0:23 to 0:47, now it is all about getting both of your perimeter planets promoted to double, if possible, before the shock waves passes. I have come very close to having them both promoted to double, but I haven’t done it yet.
  5. From 0:48 to 1:18, after the shock wave passes, get both of your perimeter doubles promoted, then start moving your units into the vicinity of the purple perimeter planet. When you get enough units there, use the attack, release trick to get it to try to promote, then destroy, capture and promote the planet.
  6. From 1:19 to 1:34, in this position it is likely that green is going to try to capture the perimeter planet. I am attacking the green double planet to try to discourage green from going after that perimeter planet, that didn’t work but I was saved by orange attacking a green singleton.
  7. From 1:35 to 1:47, now it’s time to destroy the two remaining perimeter double planets and capture and promote them if possible.
  8. From 1:48 to 2:09, once the shock wave passes, you should complete any partial captures or promote any partial promotions, then let your units build up for when the shock wave starts to uncover the inner planets.

One thing to pay attention to at this point is that green has a partial capture on a perimeter planet. If I had waited too long to destroy the green planets, they would have tried to capture that outer planet. If you are lucky like I was here and no one has captured the center planet, you could get a really good time.


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Tariff

Minefields (Andromeda) Tariff walk-through, completed in 3:32.2

A long time ago I tried Tariff and at first I thought it couldn’t be beat. After finally beating it in about 7 minutes I just quit playing. Recently I revisited Tariff and tried some of the tricks I’ve learned, and wouldn’t you know it, they work even on Tariff.

The main thing to use on Tariff is the attack that you have no intention of completing, but instead you just want to coerce your opponent to move their units away from you and in position to be used on your other opponent.

 

Walk-through

  1. From 0:00 to 0:51, the initial captures and promotions, where I go from here depends on what the opponents do.
  2. From 0:52 to 1:00, I capture the singleton on the side of the first opponent to capture their double just below my triple planet, in this case that was orange. Once this is captured you want to build up some units that you will later peel off and use as an attack force.
  3. From 1:01 to 1:06, as soon as possible you want to start sending units from your center triple to the singleton on the other side.  In this case, this is to prevent green from trying to capture it.
  4. From 1:07 to 1:10, time to peel off an attack force for later use.
  5. From 1:11 to 1:25, complete your capture of the green side singleton and begin building up forces for a second attack force.
  6. From 1:26 to 1:33,  the second attack force.
  7. From 1:34 to 2:19, use alternate attacks on the opponents lower singleton or double planets.  These attacks work best when that planet has just sent its forces to join an attack.  Since that planet isn’t well defended, an attack on it will prompt the opponent to send in reinforcements.
  8. From 2:20 to 2:26, it seemed to me as if orange had gained the upper hand, so I started sending my forces to the orange side of the board to attack the strongest opponent first.
  9. From 2:27 to 2:36, time for the attack. How to attack here depends on how the opponents are attacking each other. I like to get the double inside the minefield. Once it is wiped out the opponent will usually try to recapture it, but with the minefield in the way, that isn’t an easy task.
  10. From 2:37 to 2:44, now that the battle has been completely joined, I figured it was time to start in on green. And of course, we have to continue the assault on orange.

From here, orange is just about wiped out, and green is weakened. All that is left is cleaning up what is left. At 3:06 capturing the green singleton was a mistake. I didn’t need the units it would produce and with those extra 100 units I would have been able to destroy the two remaining double planets quite a bit faster.


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Excise

Gamma Rays (Perseus) Excise walk-through, completed in 3:44.9

Excise is difficult, but there is a way to get a good time. One of the keys tactics I use in Auralux is to initiate an attack that I have no intention of completing. The purpose of these attacks are to get an opponent to move their units in a way that is advantageous to me. That is the way to tilt the odds in your favor in Excise.

Walk-through

  1. From 0:00 to 0:40, after doubling the initial planet, position your units where you can attack and capture one of the doubles inside the minefields. The reason for positioning them in this way, is your attack will take them through the thinnest part of the minefields, and you will lose less of your units.
  2. From 0:41 to 1:05, the double you just captured will produce enough units to regenerate itself after the gamma rays. However, if you capture and promote the other minefield double, there will not be enough time to produce the units for it to regenerate. For that reason you should just position your units to prepare for after the gamma rays come through.
  3. From 1:06 to 1:15, after the gamma rays you want to capture and promote both of the minefield doubles.
  4. From 1:16 to 1:29, if orange or green are keeping a mass of units on their singleton, you can’t do this, but if like here they are capturing their minefield doubles, then you can start peeling of units that will be used later.
  5. From 1:30 to 2:10, the objective here is to not allow your opponents to just mass their units inside the protection of their minefields. You want them out and attacking each other. Besides the obvious benefit from them attacking each other, you also have the benefit of them wearing down their minefields so that later on you will have an open path to attack them.
  6. From 2:11 to 2:34, after the gamma rays, I recapture the minefield doubles, but I don’t promote them. If things don’t develop quickly in my favor then I’ll go ahead and promote them.
  7. From 2:35 to 2:53, once they are attacking each other in the center arena, you need to get some units in position to attack.
  8. From 2:54 to 3:02, after waiting for them to attack each other, it is time to start wiping out some opponents. At 3:00 I was very fortunate that green continued its counter attack against orange, quite often that isn’t the case.
  9. From 3:03 to 3:15, once orange joins the fray in the arena, its time to position your units for an eventual attack on orange. The attack on green at 3:14 is an intended to prompt orange to join in, when that happens we are entering the end game.

After the gamma rays pass, you just need to destroy your opponents in the best way possible.


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Centrum

Supernovas (Hercules) Centrum walk-through, completed in 2:05.4

In most of the games in Supernovas, it is best to ignore the supernova.  That isn’t the case with Centrum.  With Centrum the strategy is to capture planets so that you end up with green between you and orange.  Then, while orange is destroying green, you can build up your forces for triggering the supernova.

Walk-through

  1. From 0:00 to 0:20, after doubling your initial planet, you need to capture the singleton next to greens initial planet.  Your objective is to own the back planets, and allowing green to get this singleton does not advance that cause.
  2. From 0:21 to 0:37, continue getting the back planets.  The key point here is that green is capturing other planets instead of promoting their triple planet.  The longer green waits to promote the triple planet, the better for you.
  3. From 0:38 to 0:52, after capturing and promoting our remaining planets, we use a fake attack on the green double to get it to promote.  If they don’t promote this planet, they will use it to attack your triple prior to orange attacking green.
  4. From 0:53 to 1:02, you want to destroy and capture greens triple planet just as it is being promoted to triple.
  5. From 1:03 to 1:22, you want to promote the triple planet and when orange starts attacking green, capture the center green singleton.
  6. From 1:23 to 1:32, start by attacking the orange double planet, then when the mass of units are over the supernova, attack and trigger it.  If you are lucky, as I was here, this will occur just as orange is destroying the last green planet.

From here, you just have to destroy the weakened orange planets as quickly as possible.  It works best for me to start with the double planet in the back of the orange formation.


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