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Author Topic: Apostle of RIF - Building a bothacking powerhouse  (Read 6023 times)

Kyzrati

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Apostle of RIF - Building a bothacking powerhouse
« on: October 23, 2018, 12:29:37 AM »

Serious robot hacking time! (YouTube, and VOD while it lasts)

I actually did do a robot hacking stream right after Beta 7 released last month, considering this is the release's flagship feature, and even though it was an exciting one (and a win) the audio sucked so I've definitely wanted to give it another go.

But 1) I didn't want it to be so much like the other one, 2) there were already a bunch of RIF updates planned for Beta 8, and 3) I did the whole Roguelike Celebration trip which is going to push back Beta 8 and didn't want to keep everyone waiting so long for RIF updates to come along with the other new stuff.

So I suddenly decided to do a quick 7.1 release and put out the RIF stuff now, so that I could use it in the stream right away (and also give it to everyone else!). I guess we can call this... "stream-driven development" :P

Overall the idea was tie RIF closer to alert management and Garrisons, since after all you're sort of a part of Complex 0b10 once you install it.

7.1 is a surprise release I did immediately before streaming it, and we'll get to the changelog/release notes this weekend, but first, the run!

-10 and -9 were pretty uneventful, since I raced through both just grabbing the first parts we needed: storage and a launcher. I plan to use wheels pretty much the entire run to minimize all slot types except utilities in order to maximize capacity for storage, couplers, some infowar, and armor when there's room/necessity.

-8/Materials, however, took for-e-ver because I literally explored the entire floor before finding the lone Garrison. At least Electrolasers made short work of everything in my way, although in this particular situation I did have to pull out the launcher and make a mess of the place :P

Spoiler: Oops, surrounded! (click to show/hide)

The Garrison was so hard to find that I was just about to give up and leave when it popped up via terrain scanning. The stream was going crazy hoping that I'd notice the Garrison tucked away in a nearby tiny room, or at least see them yelling about it, haha.

Just look at this layout--literally the last room I hadn't seen, right there next to the exit I was about the leave from.

Spoiler: That was close... (click to show/hide)

Inside the first Garrison things went smoothly. As predicted my [non-armored] wheels got blown off and I had to switch to legs there for a bit, but before leaving I had plenty of nice wheels taken from unpowered ARCs.

Somewhat less expected was the fact that I'd somehow inadvertently dropped an Imp. Datajack we'd found earlier (somewhere in -8?), so this wouldn't be much of a bothacking run without the ability to actually use my RIF and all these couplers... Then inside the Garrison itself we happened upon a stash of... Remote Datajacks, believe it or not!

Spoiler: Saved! (click to show/hide)

Whew, back in the Factory with RIF, datajack, and couplers... (the garrison brought us up to -7)

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

After about 900 turns of hacking around the floor we came across another Garrison Access, and RIF synergizes with garrisons so well... hey why not go into another one :)

So another Garrison fell and the stockpile of couplers continued to grow. All the new RIF mechanics really helped... Here is an allied Swarmer about to come around the corner to help out the temporarily allied Sentry against some incoming Grunts, and right after this a couple more Grunts came up from the south and it was a big mess of hacking and destruction :D

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

And you know what we did no -7/Factory once we got back to it? Dove into another Garrison xD. Right at the entrance we even got a great stash of super couplers...

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Made it through that Garrison just fine and got spit out on -6/Factory, where the stream is on pause until next week! Check out that inventory...


Yeah I just have a basic Particle Gun because I'm not really fighting at the moment... The Gauss Cannon was pretty awesome for when I had to shoot things, especially the melee bots I didn't have couplers for since it has knockback.

Here's the route so far:

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

I would've taken the Mines early on, mainly to drop the alert, but didn't find the exits before regular ones so didn't bother. And ever since then sticking to Garrisons has been rather effective :). Alert has been high up around level 3/4-ish a lot, but bringing it down hasn't been too problematic...

We'll see what happens next week!
« Last Edit: November 05, 2018, 11:29:32 PM by Kyzrati »
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Kyzrati

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Re: Building a bothacking RIF powerhouse
« Reply #1 on: October 30, 2018, 12:33:28 AM »

The Apostle of RIF is alive and well. Part 2 is complete, and we spent the entire stream at the same depth!!! Impressive xD (YouTube)

The original plan for this run was to just fool around with RIF and garrisons, which is how Part 1 went, but then MTF came up with this bounty, challenging me to get a GRD to go with this RIF. I've never had a GRD before, because they're not that easy/safe to get (nor would it normally do me any good since I generally play combat), but hey if there's a reward involved, and it'll give the run some higher stakes plus make it even more interesting then why not! Having a Gui. Remote Datajack would make hacks around corners/obstacles a possibility, and that's just cool :)

This does affect strategy, however. We've gotta plan which method to acquire it (there are many options here), and then actually execute that plan... So I've decided my route will take us through two branches: Extension and Armory.

Because the entrance to Extension can appear starting from -6/Factory, we couldn't leave that depth until confirming whether it was there. So that meant a combination of hacking and just searching around.

Some Chute Traps were located early on, but passed up and remembered as a backup plan in case things went wrong. Things did sorta go wrong when we lost our last Remote Datajack (what is a bothacker without a Datajack?!), but a lone Programmer sent out after us was kind enough to replace it for us when I smashed its face in a doorway. We also repaired one of the four Lrg. Storage Units, which are getting kinda beat up. I've never actually repaired anything before, so I got an achievement for that :P

After spending a while exploring the floor to no avail, we decided to bail and see if Waste could provide some gear and/or friends and/or just reset the level to something better.

Spoiler: Time to make the leap (click to show/hide)

But even after heading into the new -6/Factory, so much ground was covered without being able to hack exactly what we needed to know.


I did decide to hack a Recycling Unit on the way and was rewarded with the Armory depth right away, which was perfect. It's at -4, info we'll need for later.

Still been sticking to wheels. The lack of Garrison visits for a while now means being left with just basic wheels most of the time, but we did luck into one more Arm. Huge Wheel :D


There we've got two Sentries in tow, some of my favorite allies to have while bothacking. Basically the earlier Garrison trips meant having plenty of couplers to own any Sentries or Hunters on the way, so neither of those have been a problem. We've basically been using those two against the others where possible, or at worst having to pull out the launcher to deal with a troublesome squad.

We were just about to give up on the second -6/Factory when suddenly Terminus pointed out a part of the map that looked suspiciously like a special exit...

Spoiler: So much exploring... (click to show/hide)

And sure enough, on closer look the terrain scanner had earlier revealed a few dots of brighter wall just north of longest corridor of the south central area. And it totally looked like a reasonable layout for the Extension branch entrance.

Spoiler: It was! (click to show/hide)

If he hadn't pointed that out Extension would've been inaccessible and we would've missed the opportunity! (Sure GRD would still be accessible other ways, but this is my preferred safer approach.)

Extension isn't too hard for hackers, so not too much trouble there, although the whole point of coming was to rescue A7, so it's a good thing there was a Greatsword lying around because chopping up the walls with that bad boy was much more reliable than hacking the doors.

Then... we got a little company.

An assault was dispatched and we had a small but deadly army by this point, so this particular assault was kinda nasty.

Spoiler: ! (click to show/hide)

Not only did an Imp open in my face, but this thing had four Demolishers tagging along. Good thing I'd kept that Demolisher coupler all this time! I immediately temp-converted one of the Demolishers, which fired on the group and blasted the Imp out of existence, before the Rogue turned on the Demolisher and slashed it to death, mwuahaha :D

The rest of the group was fairly easy to clean up. I perma-assimilated one of the Demolishers off to the east, and one of the others tried to flank us via the corridor to the left but ran into our two Sentries, which as you might know are resistance to EX, so it was firing at them but didn't last too long ;)

Spoiler: Victorious! (click to show/hide)

Funny enough we met two Rainmakers right after that. They probably fell behind the main assault, so they got cleaned up alone in a corridor, mainly by A7 and a derelict Hunter that really really wanted to help out...

And here we are now, pretty much done with Extension and soon to return to Factory. We found this crazy room that I kinda want to enter (because there's an Armored Leg right there!) but yeah this is not a good room to let allies follow into for... well... obvious reasons :P


Alert so far has mostly fluctuated between level 1 and 3, kept under control pretty well despite how long we've been hanging out in the same areas/maps.

Part 3 will be at the same time next week, when we'll head over to -5/Factory and have a bit more freedom. We'll almost certainly hit a Garrison or two :) (although I dunno, maybe we should find Mr. Z? Would make Armory easier... though it could very well be W at that depth, no idea.)
« Last Edit: November 02, 2018, 12:22:15 AM by Kyzrati »
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Kyzrati

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Re: Building a bothacking RIF powerhouse
« Reply #2 on: November 05, 2018, 11:28:59 PM »

Well now... Part 3 is complete and we're in the Upper Caves. Everything's going to plan!!! (Sort of, anyway, but we'll get to that in the details.) (YouTube)

This is already by far my longest run ever, combining all the stream talking with this slower meandering play style that is a bit more thoughtful with all this hacking. (Yet more hacking achievements earned today!) Another four hours in and we're up at -5, still not even into the really hard stuff, but at least still well on our way to Armory.

Today there were quite a few hairy incidents, and we've gotten gradually lower on couplers to the point that we're playing a sort of heavily armored wheeled infowar build now, one which sometimes hacks stuff when possible. RIF has still been pretty useful overall, though, especially when we dove into our fourth Garrison to "get out of trouble" :P

Solved the heavily damaged Lrg. Storage Unit problem by repairing two of them here:

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Then despite having explored a fair bit of -5/Factory, trouble reared its head and I decided to run from it to escape through a Garrison. Good timing, really!

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

For a little while there we were on treads (low armor, wheels got taken out), which made things a bit harder given how slow we were.

But hey, at least we could dive into a Garrison to grab a few more couplers and head back out into a somewhat safer floor, yeah? :). Well first there's the question of the Behemoth in the middle...

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

As you can see we have a ton of infowar abilities (attached and/or in inventory), so playing smart was a must. Terrain scanning has been a boon throughout the run, including here where the best option was clearly to follow tunnels through the walls to the south and cut into the southeast quadrant. Too bad we had no way to reasonably deal with a Behemoth so it ended up being a SE exit after grabbing some more gear over there.

In the new -5/Factory section a helpful Hauler dropped a bunch of Mni. Smartbomb Launchers :D

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Today one of the hacking themes was telling Workers to dismantled explosive machines, which worked quite well. This Hauler's escort was eliminated using just that strategy (notice all the debris...).

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

The star of the mid-game! A full stash of Imp. Power Armor, pretty much all of which was taken along for the ride...

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

"Set dismantle target: Nuclear Reactor." That worker to the east is about to kill most of these bots ;)

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

(Before it reached its target I also reprogrammed the Angel to protect me instead of its friends :P)

After lots and lots and lots of exploration, a desirable caves exit was finally located, and just in time as alert was getting high and more Programmers were coming.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)

We entered from the southeast, found a regular exit in the southwest, then in the search for a caves exit headed northeast across the entire map to find one in the corner.

Spoiler (click to show/hide)
« Last Edit: November 07, 2018, 04:10:07 AM by Kyzrati »
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Kyzrati

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Re: Apostle of RIF - Building a bothacking powerhouse
« Reply #3 on: November 13, 2018, 12:38:06 AM »

The Apostle has fallen! (YouTube)

That went... slightly worse than expected xD. I didn't expect it to go too well considering how challenging the goal was, but I did think we'd at least reach Armory. Instead it ended shortly before the entrance, on -4/Factory.

The Upper Caves were easy enough, having so much infowar that threat avoidance wasn't an issue, although sadly those caves didn't lead where we wanted.


Then the rest of the time was spent on -4/Factory, where despite tons of intel and alternative safer/better options, the goal was, after all, to visit Armory, so the search was on.


The main issue was the decision to head northwest to look for the Armory entrance, which resulted in a lot of combat (not great for a non-combat build...), as initially it was multiple unavoidable Sentries stationed at junctions, though the biggest problems were Hunters that didn't show up on sensors, and the other patrols passing by that same tight area while battles were raging on.

Eventually after all that attrition, it was decided to retreat from the area and try another way.

(it was on the other side of the map xD)

This is about where things started to go wrong, being a pure non-combat build on wheels, but again passing through some tight areas on the way to the Armory entrance and forced to fight.

This would've been fine if we'd had any couplers in ages, but we got behind the curve due to getting low in the first place, and barely hitting any more garrisons.

After that some Hunters and Programmers showed up, and basically all hell broke lose.


There was one last smartbomb fired before the true end came ;)

Anyway, this could've been a fine run under normal circumstances, but it was driven into the ground by an intentionally inflexible strategy, and Cogmind is good at breaking inflexible strategies! It was interesting running such a min-maxed build, though--first time I've gone with only two weapon slots in order to maximize utility space.

Still more late-game RIFfing to experiment with!

Spoiler: Score: 20,174 (click to show/hide)
« Last Edit: November 14, 2018, 02:52:10 AM by Kyzrati »
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Kyzrati

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Re: Apostle of RIF - Building a bothacking powerhouse
« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2018, 03:32:18 AM »

Since the run came to an end before time was up and I wanted to play some more, we started up a separate stream. Despite intending to do quick-play runs with decisions made more for fun rather than optimization, that stream went on for another couple hours, and its second run even spanned 24 maps! It had some pretty epic moments, so may as well record a few of them here...

(YouTube) (the first run lasted almost no time at all, diving into the Mines immediately without any preparation and wading through Assembled and Demolishers for... a very short time xD)




Also quite a few traps were produced, which was both helpful and fun :D

Also we got ME-RLN! Such a pro, taking everyone out in no time, especially after his weapons were destroyed--he'd literally hack entire squads in 3-4 turns, it was amazing.



He died a lot sooner than he should have, entirely my fault because I kept unnecessarily firing rockets and hitting him, too :P

Alone again on -3/Research, here you'd think I should be about to die:
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

But nah, just fired a bunch of rockets at them, taking out more than half, then after loosing most parts took off running to the north.


But Research is hard when playing a non-serious combat build, so eventually things kinda broke down and I gathered all these folks around to pump literally 7-8 micronukes into them xD
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

The end came a bit after that.

Was a lot of fun doing a much less "thoughtful" run after finally finishing such a long and ponderous one before that (actually my longest ever!).

Spoiler: Score: 16,729 (click to show/hide)
« Last Edit: November 14, 2018, 02:52:55 AM by Kyzrati »
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