"We've received intelligence reporting Imperial activity in the area. This is your starting position. Sweep in quickly and drive their strike force back. Your objective is to occupy their base camp. Good luck."
During the deployment phase, the Gallian forces are split into two groups, but essentially share the same path moving forward. The East group has the Edelweiss, while the West group has the Shamrock. Since the terrain in this skirmish is severely limited in terms of where tanks can be moved, only the Edelweiss is truly needed to complete the mission.
Remember that you do not have completely fill out your entire deployment at the beginning of the mission. Having slots open is very useful in long maps (such as this one) where once you take over an enemy base, you can call in reinforcements much closer to where they are needed.
Use the ISARA smoke rounds to cover your advances through the invulnerable turret sections, as well as other dangerous areas (such as around the first Heavy Tank you encounter near the 2nd enemy base).
Because of the large amount of distance between the enemy bases, most of the movement will be done by a team of Scouts and their grenade launchers (if you have the attachment at this point). Use the occupied enemy bases to move slower units from location to location using reinforcement deployments.
Make sure that your units have full AP when making the run through the second set of invulnerable turrets. This mission allows for up to 8 turns to still get an A-rank, so there is usually plenty of time to prepare your run.
When destroying the bunkers, do not stand too close to the ragnite crates, as the resulting explosion can heavily damage or kill your character.
The deployment pattern in the Hard difficulty splits your forces in two. Largo and Rosie are in a crouched position where the first enemy Medium tank would have been in the lower difficulties (the area that has the overlook into the 2nd set of indestructible turrets). Alicia is isolated in a small corner in the northeast close to where the 1st enemy bunker is located. She is in a crouched position behind some sandbags, but they do not provide much protection from the number of units that surround her. The remaining deployment locations are on the shoreline, where the Edelweiss (southeast deployment area) and the Shamrock (southwest deployment area) are also positioned.
The main objective remains the same: capture the main enemy base located to the west. However, most of the enemy unit positions have been changed and will need a different strategy as compared to the lower difficulties.
Proper utilization of the ISARA smokescreen shots is essential for this skirmish. Beyond providing cover from the indestructible turrets, you can also use it to allow for close range ambush attacks and covering advances past multiple enemies. Remember that explosions will cause the smokescreen to be prematurely dispersed.
You have a full 10 turns to complete this skirmish with an A rank, so there is are more than enough turns to carefully take out all of the enemies and the bases.
If you have a Scout in the first sniper tower, you can fire a grenade launcher exactly onto the second sniper tower (with the enemy Sniper inside of it). You will need to move to the corner of the tower and manually aim at the enemy Sniper, as the snap-to targeting does not recognize them as being in range.
Instead of having to circle around the Gatling Bunkers and destroying the Ragnite containers, a Shocktrooper's flamethrower will destroy the bunker in one shot from any position.
It is important to call in an Engineer from the third base when making the final approach to the main enemy base. If you take the path behind the large building, there are two anti-personnel landmines which looks like there is just enough space to walk through. It is not possible (unless you destroy the pile of planks on next to the building), so you will either have to sacrifice a unit crossing the mines or have an Engineer disarm them.
Expert Difficulty Special Conditions
Main Objective Changed: (verify)
Starting Units Changed: (verify)
Welkin cannot give Orders (verify)
As Welkin does not have his tank, if he is ever incapacitated during the battle then that is the end of the game. Keep him out of danger at all costs. (see above)
(Temporary placeholder) A-rank Strategy:
Unit Placement Diagram:
Note: The enemy ace, Intel Operative Mitz the Talker, is most feasibly killed on the first turn, as he flees toward the southwest base, which is guarded by two invulnerable turrets, during the enemy phase. It is still possible, however, for a unit with a crossfire resistance potential to reach the base by sandwiching between the two Tank Destroyers for cover from the turret fire, healing if necessary, then continuing their run.
As this page's expert strategy is rather incomplete and I have just beaten the level in question myself not twenty minutes hence, I have decided to provide the strategy I used to complete it. (Apologies for incorrect formatting, I'm not used to editing on this wiki.)
Please note, some of these notes may contain minor spoilers (specifically those about potentials).
The expert difficulty strategy can be divided into three sections:
Destruction of the pillbox blockading the entrance - Guarded by three shocktroopers and the level's Ace (who is not terribly dangerous in interception terms, but problematic for other reasons), the entrance to the rest of the stage is very well defended and can cause considerable frustration. However, there are two viable ways to crack this problem early on the first turn.
## For the first method, use Lynn the shocktrooper (deployed on the top left-hand position and equipped with Ruhm from the DLC for this to work properly) to destroy the Heavy Gatling turret flanking the bunker from a position close to her starting point and then advance up the left-hand side of the funnel while hugging the left-hand wall. At a certain point, the fire from the bunker will be eclipsed by the left-hand chokepoint wall and the shocktroopers will not be in range themselves so a measure of temporary safety is afforded (this first step should be accomplished using only 1 CP). Next, move a character of either the scout or engineer class equipped with a ZM Kar 8 or 9 (I recommend Knute from the engineers due to his excellent potentials) up next to Lynn using the same method of wall-hugging and move just into optimal firing range (acquiring the supporting fire from Lynn's Ruhm is highly advised at this stage). From here, pick off the shocktroopers as efficiently as possible (this, including the initial move of the second unit, should not exceed 3 CP (exceptions apply if Double Action or Hard Worker allow for the successful removal of more than one shocktrooper per turn)) and, once they are cleared, try to get one of the units stationed in the safe zone through to the back of the pillbox (this will require next to full health or the Resist Crossfire potential to work. I note that I ultimately had three units in the safe point: Lynn [Ruhm], Knute [ZM Kar 9], and Nancy [ZM Kar 8] before I had successfully activated Hard Worker and cleared out both the overlooking sniper and the bunker itself) and destroy it.
## The second method runs much the same as the first but involves using at least two scouts with grenade launchers to clear out the shocktroopers. This should be a plausible alternative for the most part, but remains incredibly difficult to pull off (as it involves firing over the right-hand wall without knowing exactly where to aim). If the player can achieve this method, it should save 1-2 CP which can be put to use in the following sections.
# Preparing to survive the enemy's counterattack (and disposing of their Ace) - Though this is the second section of the Skirmish, it should begin on the latter half of the first phase. It is important to note that, to remove a number of stumbling blocks to this strategy, it is strongly advised to have a suitably equipped engineer already waiting at the safe point. Picking up where we left off, the player should have around 4-5 CP remaining and hopefully have already cleared out the sniper in the tower near the base. If not, try to activate a skill which enables two actions a turn and remove him as quickly as possible. The next problem is the enemy's ace (who is dressed like a Gallian soldier, don't get confused): sitting behind cover, he is not terribly dangerous but carries a rare weapon and will try to escape as soon as the enemy get their turn. He is heavily resistant to machine gun fire and has a considerable amount of HP, but high-end members of the ZM Kar series should be able to take him out within 15 or so shots (do not devote more than 2CP to killing the Ace unless you have managed to achieve method 2 in the first section or have managed to activate Hard Worker or Double Action). It should be noted that, if you don't care about the Ace's weapon, he can be largely ignored as damage received from his interception fire is rather inconsequential and he doesn't usually attack during the enemy's first turn (as he will rapidly move away from his initial position). With the Ace dealt with or ignored, the more pressing issue comes with surviving the enemy's next turn with any amount of CP: while the bulk of your operational forces should be safe providing Section 1 is complete, your Leader units are exposed to a large quantity of fire. The first thing you should do is, providing you've been maintaining a healthy save history, is make sure Alicia activates both Country Bred and Valkyria at once and use the massive accuracy and damage boosts from this combination to take out the enemy sniper located on the roof near the enemy's fourth base (round near the depot) and move back to the rock wall on the side facing away from the enemy's main deployment (with the dual threat of the tank and the Gatling Bunker). A priority, unless you can bring up another Lancer before turn 3, is to use Lago to damage the Gatling Bunker and retreat a little ways back as to be out of range of the tank's main rounds. If you can spare the CP, move Rosie back to the same position as Alicia. From here, end the first turn and see how the enemy's turn progresses. If necessary, go back to your previous save and try to alter the outcome. Unless you are spectacularly unlucky, the tank shouldn't manage to kill more than one of your Leader units (if you keep losing Largo or both Alicia and Rosie, consider moving one of them into position as a scapegoat. It is better to lose either Alica or Rosie due to their limited usage in this mission).
Clearing the enemy's main deployment - if the first two sections are complete, this section is considerably easier. At this point, at least two of your Leaders should still be alive (excluding Welkin) though this section can still be complete in one turn with only one of them alive. Firstly, clear out the two entrenched Shocktroopers on the right-hand side above the first enemy camp (this will likely take 3 CP: one to remove the sandbags from the trooper by the tower, one to finish him off, and a third to clear out the other trooper crouching in the trench). Next, move up an engineer and repair the damaged tower near the first shocktrooper and, if possible, take out the next shocktrooper near to the tower. Providing the tank went after Alica and Rosie, you shouldn't take any interception fire. Next, destroy the Heavy Tank and the Gatling Bunker using Largo (running on the same assumption as before, it should be possible to OHKO the tank with a shot to the radiator) this should take around 3 CP for the bunker and 1-3 CP for the tank. After this, move Lynn into the tower nearest to the first base and use Ruhm to kill the two Heavy Gatling turrets from above (take no more than 2 CP, 1 if possible). If you have any CP left, use your ZM Kar wielding units to kill the crouching Shocktroopers before the end of the second section and move Welkin into the base by the end of the second turn. If you have to wait another turn, prioritise the destruction of the Heavy Tank and the Gatling Bunker and assume defensive positions. Whatever happens on the third turn, avoid getting trapped by the enemy's shocktrooper reinforcements and push through to the objective. Congradulations, mission complete!