Welcome, Guest. Please Login or Register
  (UTC)
AvP Unknown
News:
Page Index Toggle Pages: [1] 2  Send Topic Send Topic Print Print
Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) Lifecycle of the Alien (Read 11705 times)
Bruce Leenomorph
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


Enter the Alien

Posts: 38
Location: Temple of Xenomorph Kung Fu
Joined: Feb 27th, 2011
Lifecycle of the Alien
Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:03am
Print Post Print Post  
Here's a thread I made on PlanetAVP back in 2007, when I wanted to pass on my knowledge that I had used for my Alien team in NBK.  I'm sure everyone here is a seasoned veteran, but these techniques are tried and true, battle-tested, and any new players may find them useful.  I'll present 'em here for you, anyway. 


______________________
Well, as much as I hate to say it, Primal Hunt(where my clan played) is pretty much dead, as is that branch of NBK.  That pretty much relegates me to a ghost haunting the graveyard of PH... but this ghost has something to teach. 

With that in mind, I give you my training lessons that I created a while ago when I was Alien Leader.  These lessons are mostly complete, designed to help a nooblet go from zero to hero in a short time.  I know my training method works, as I've literally seen one of my recruits become a good player overnight.  I give them to you, the reader, that you might enjoy and possibly learn from them. 

Those of you who are already masters of the game probably won't find much use for these; that's fine, they're meant for newer players, anyway.  Of course, these are meant to be accompanied by training and testing in-game.  Keep that in mind. 

The lessons are in three parts, describing the lifecycle of the savage Alien: born from the Egg, growing into a Drone, finally molting into a Queen to continue the cycle anew.  For those who would master the arts of Xeno Kung Fu, this cycle parallels the individual's journey from whelp to wisened elder.  Enjoy.


The Egg(introduction)
Here we will cover some basic strats for Alien players. These are only the basics, of course, but once this training program is completed, we will move on to the advanced stuff.

The information and strategies contained within these threads is to be accompanied by an actual training program in game, taught by none other than your fearless Alien Leader. The training programs are not optional, but they will make you a better player. Guaranteed.

Oh, one more thing: these training lessons are for the most part written with mastery of drone in mind. It's the most well-balanced Alien, giving it all of the strengths and few of the weaknesses the other bugs share. With excellent speed, strength, agility and a huge pounce distance, the drone has useful attributes in all combat situations, where the others truly shine in only some areas.

The long path to true Grand Mastery, the Path of the Dragon, is through the heart of the drone.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Bruce Leenomorph
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


Enter the Alien

Posts: 38
Location: Temple of Xenomorph Kung Fu
Joined: Feb 27th, 2011
Re: Lifecycle of the Alien
Reply #1 - Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:03am
Print Post Print Post  
The Egg - Alien Basics
Ok, facehuggers and chestbursters... this is where we begin. As are the aliens born from eggs, you must also hatch and begin your journey toward mastery. Mastery of none other than Xeno style Kung Fu.

There are a few basic conventions that apply to all teams, with a few twists based on the aliens', well, alien nature:

Use Teamwork!

This is a big one. Most players tend to go for the highest amount of frags they can get, all else be damned. Well, that garbage stops here. You are all part of the same Hive, so act like it.

Individual victory is meaningless. Your ultimate goal should be for the NBK Alien Team to achieve victory as a team. You want to dominate every match, as a damn team! Put the Hive before yourself, and your skills will increase. Don't believe me? Just wait and see.

So what does this mean? It means use a well-balanced group of aliens, such as a pack of drones and a predalien or praetorian. While the faster bugs harry the prey, the stronger ones can rush into the battle to mop up. No warrior, no matter how skilled, can withstand a concentrated alien assault.

Look to our friends the wolves. A pack will run their prey to ground, chasing and harrying until it is too tired to fully defend itself. You can do this to the enemy as an alien pack. Instead of all rushing at once, you alternate so that one alien is constantly attacking the foe.

Bruce leaps at the fleeing predator, makes a claw swipe and immediately backs off. Ender jumps in right afterward, repeating the process, and backing off while Bundles jumps in. Constant, alternating attacks.

Run the prey to ground. If the enemy is trying to fight three or four bloodthirsty drones, when the praetorian enters the fray, that enemy is doomed.

Teamwork is the key. Make absolutely sure, however, that you do not cluster together, or the enemy will pick you all off with one shot. You want of course to surround the enemy, because unless they are really, really good, they won't be able to guard all directions at once.


Use the tail!

This is an important one. So important, in fact, it needs to be covered right out of the Egg. Fortunately, unlike pounce and wallwalk, the tail is universal to all Aliens.

Firstly, unless you have a very good reason not to you should always be charging the tail. A fully-charged drone tail can kill a non-heavy predator in a single attack. If an enemy runs around a corner or through a doorway above which you are perched, and you have a fully-charged tail at the ready, the advantage is yours. If you hit in the head, even when standing on the ground trading blows with the enemy, it's all the more deadly.

Plus, like the claws, the tail has deceptive range. The queen can hit you from a huge distance, but even a drone or praetorian can reach you with its tail before you can close to spear-range.

When you're facing an enemy that still breathes, you need to either be charging the tail when you're not attacking, or whipping after every few claw swipes. Always. If the foe isn't stunned, you need to fix that. Strive to keep your enemy constantly stunned, even if you can't connect with a pounce.

Use the tail even when you think the enemy is stunned, just in case. Aliens have four methods of attack: claw, tail, pounce and headbite. Headbite is unreliable in combat with a skilled warrior. That leaves claw, tail and pounce. Most nooblets use the first and the last to a great extent. Don't be like them.

With three different but each uniquely useful attacks as a base, your Xeno Kung Fu skill has nowhere to go but up.


Use all your abilities!

While the abilities will be covered in-depth later, this is something you need to keep in mind from the beginning. Use all of the Alien's abilities and your own skills in equal measure. Don't limit your potential by wasting the Alien's.

Too often I've seen Alien players do what I like to call the "Predalien(or PA) Combo." The PA Combo consists of pounce, jump, pounce, jump, pounce, jump. It may work once or twice on an experienced warrior, but not more than that. Any decent pred will finish you with a spear the instant you land, and a human will just likely blow you up with a nade or snipe you.

Becoming predictable is your worst enemy. It leads to defeat and humiliation. So you must vary your tactics.

Move in unpredictable patterns. Try to randomly hit the keys to strafe in all directions, without your movements being random and chaotic. They will ideally have the appearance of chaos, but in fact be tightly controlled by the Alien. I zigzag like a madman when facing melee preds, sometimes even moving forward into spear range.

Or, I'll strafe and dance a jig while pretending to retreat, only to hop forward and suddenly attack when the pred or human pursues. If you are constantly moving in an unpredictable way, without pattern, it becomes very difficult to hit you. NBK-Gelatinous was a master of this.

As well, you
« Last Edit: Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:10am by Bruce Leenomorph »  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Bruce Leenomorph
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


Enter the Alien

Posts: 38
Location: Temple of Xenomorph Kung Fu
Joined: Feb 27th, 2011
Re: Lifecycle of the Alien
Reply #2 - Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:12am
Print Post Print Post  
As well, you need to use wallwalk in conjunction with these crazy moves. Acclimate yourself to doing this while hanging vertically, upside down and while the world is spinning crazily. That makes Aliens doubly difficult to hit, utilizing yet another of their advantages.

Remember, as the Alien, your only weapon is yourself. Like the ancient creators of Kung Fu, you have only that with which you were born. So you must use strategy, skill and pure instinct as a unified whole to achieve victory against those whose weapons outreach yours.

The Drone - Alien Advanced

Welcome, grasshoppers. You have successfully completed Basic and molted into an adult Alien. You are now prepared to fully serve the Hive. This is where you learn the skills necessary to do that.

Just as before, this level of training will feature several different lessons. Advanced contains more lessons, and those lessons are more in-depth, than Basic. It is also a gateway to far greater skill than the run of the mill Alien players that flood servers in nooblet-tides.

And just as before, upon reading and learning the knowledge and skills contained in the lessons both here and in game, AT members will have to pass an Advanced Training test. Only upon successful completion of the test, to the satisfaction of your Alien Leader, can you move on to higher levels and greater privileges.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Bruce Leenomorph
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


Enter the Alien

Posts: 38
Location: Temple of Xenomorph Kung Fu
Joined: Feb 27th, 2011
Re: Lifecycle of the Alien
Reply #3 - Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:13am
Print Post Print Post  
The Drone - Alien Advanced

Ambushing the Prey

Ambush is canonically one of the Alien's best attack strategies. If you can strike the first blow before the enemy knows of your presence, you stand a much better chance of winning. This is doubly important against humans, who cannot see you as well as Aliens or predators but can detect movement at range.

Against humans, especially on the darker maps and especially when fighting alone, ambush is a very useful tactic. Each map has certain "hot spots" of activity, where prey traffic is greatest. By finding these places and a suitable spot from which to strike, one can almost guarantee a steady supply of kills.

In this we take after the spider. They find places of greatest traffic among their prey, set up their webs, and feed from those unlucky enough to wander into the trap. Aliens are called "bugs" for a reason, people. You, too, can use the spider's tactic to your advantage.

Consider this: if you wait above a doorway, and a human exits through that portal, you have at least half a second where he doesn't know you were there. That's enough time to pounce or connect with a tail whip, slowing the prey enough to finish it. This even works on predators, especially if they are in pursuit of human prey.

Many players do not look directly above the doorways they go through as they go through them, and even if they do, your higher vantage point gives you a better chance of escaping. This is extremely important.

Sadly, ambush is often overlooked, and it can mean the difference between a good Alien and a great one. Remember your Basic training: use all your abilities to their fullest extent.

A successful ambush can even turn the tide against a superior-armed or skilled foe. The rocket launcher-bearing human's weapon does him no good if he cannot find his enemy, while the enemy keeps striking from the shadows with lethal accuracy.

How can ambush work against humans with their motion trackers and predators with Alien Vision? The same way it works on everyone, even other Aliens. Stealth is key. Even with a vision mode on, a predator can't see an Alien perched behind him, or far enough above to escape detection.

If you can keep still until the moment of attack, much of a motion tracker's usefulness is negated. Better still, you can turn the enemy's tools against him. The motion tracker can actually be used to lure your prey into the area of your choice. By deliberately moving to trip off the tracker while waiting in an ambush spot, you have the advantage when the human inevitably comes to investigate.

Just make sure you have full awareness of your environment and a plan if things should go wrong, or you may be inviting your doom.


Stance and Style

As with real-world martial artists, both your stance and your style of fighting will be important factors in your Xeno Kung Fu. There are different variations, and each warrior should be unique, but there are many commonalities.

This is a more intangible training lesson, representing something that is as much instinct as learned skill. By itself, this lesson is not immediately useful, but combined with all that you will learn it is essential.

The quote in my signature is a good example of the philosophy you will need to adopt. All hyperbole aside, water is indeed a good inspiration. Think about what you learned in Basic about unpredictability in movement.

You want a fluid motion. Fluid transition from one movement to the next provides far greater agility and makes an Alien much harder to strike.

Except for runners, there are two stances available to an Alien: standing and crouched. From these two stances are available a wide base of movements, and each possesses inherent advantages and disadvantages.

Standing is the default for all but runners. It provides a larger target, which is a disadvantage against ranged attackers. Against melee or close-quarters opponents, however, standing is probably the best option. You are more likely to hit in the head, even when just clawing or tail-whipping straight ahead, since even the drone looks down on predators.

As well, you can hop about freely without executing the high jump, which is slow and affords a good enemy plenty of opportunity to strike when you land. Your pounce is also a little easier to connect with when close to the prey.

Important Note: Pounce damage is not affected by hit locations! I have extensively tested this in game with Admiral Sleffton, and it's not something many people know. When you pounce, which we'll cover next, you need to worry only about hitting, and not where you hit.

Crouched is a wallwalking Alien's stance, or when an Alien is simply crouched while on the ground. It makes you a smaller target, but it comes with some disadvantages.
« Last Edit: Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:14am by Bruce Leenomorph »  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Bruce Leenomorph
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


Enter the Alien

Posts: 38
Location: Temple of Xenomorph Kung Fu
Joined: Feb 27th, 2011
Re: Lifecycle of the Alien
Reply #4 - Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:14am
Print Post Print Post  
First, the predalien and praetorian are agonizingly slow while crouched. The drone and runner have large heads that are at the forefront of their bodies while crouched(or naturally, in the runners' case), which makes any hit sustained more likely to be a head shot. Head shots are deadly.

The drone and runner lose virtually no speed while crouched, but are more likely to get hit in the head, as is the praetorian, which also slows way down. So why crouch?

Well, ideally you would switch stances as the situation required. Staying in one specific stance falls under predictability, as well as limiting your ability to effectively kill.

Just today I was fighting a spear-wielding pred, and we dueled for a bit at close range. I had been standing and missed a couple pounces, but then we closed and I dropped to crouch just as he attacked. He swung overhead and I pounced and killed him.

You have a better shot at attacking an enemy's feet when crouched, which is almost as good as a head shot. Rip the foot off, the enemy dies. Feet are easier to kill than torsos.

Also, I was running backwards from a charging predator, and dropped into crouch and high-jumped back, hitting wallwalk to grab and move backwards up the wall. By using standing and crouching stances effectively, you can give yourself that many more evasions and extend your lifespan considerably.

By using the stances effectively with your environment, you basically double yet another of the Alien's advantages.

By using the stances effectively with your environment and your natural weapons, you become the personification of "survival of the fittest."


Pounce, pt. 1: Movement

Ah, the dreaded pounce. Both a mode of transportation and a powerful attack, few things are more useful to an Alien... and few things are more overused. So this gets discussed in detail even before the other weapons.

This is a three-part lesson, with the first concentrating on movement, the second on attack, and the third on Alien-specific pounces.

In fact, many Alien players have no real concept of the pounce's potential. They know it's an attack, sure, and maybe it's good for getting to a ledge or across a gap, but they don't know how to use it.

To understand the pounce, you must not look at it as a weapon. Like everything else you possess, it is simply a natural extension of your abilities. It is something you must do without thinking to; it has to become instinct. Otherwise you will never fully master its various uses.

Let's start with the pounce as transportation. Like many techniques employed by Aliens(and all species), this has both advantages and limitations.

Firstly, it can cover a great deal of distance, especially out in the open. A map like "dm_alesserfate" is the pouncer's dream(and my favorite original map). On such a map, you can just fly with the pounce, except of course as the praetorian and the cowardly runner.

While this can move you quickly into a new area or in combat range, it can also leave you open to attack. A long, high pounce is the worst for this, as you come down slowly and good enemies will calculate your landing and react accordingly. Often, this means death.

A long distance pounce carries the same risks. You may pull off a spectacular long-range kill, but more likely you will end up dead.

So then, a good idea is to pounce to close range, but wait until you've reached close range before going for a strike pounce. Predaliens have some leeway here with a more kinetic pounce. Regardless, pouncing at your opponent from long range is a fool's gambit. Pounce at angles to get a more precise shot.

Also, keep in mind that by pouncing to get around a level, you may not have the pounce available if you come suddenly upon an enemy. Remember it has a "recharge" time after use, and if you leap over a ledge or through a doorway, and an enemy is waiting, you might not be able to pounce when you need to.

It's also a noisy attack. The Alien's cry can be heard halfway across "dm_compound," so it's a dead give-away in most cases. At the very least, even if the prey does not know your exact location, it knows you are there.

The ideal times to pounce for movement are when you absolutely must cross a large distance quickly(and aren't in a tight corridor) and when an enemy is well out of attack range, but in range to shoot you. Once you've spotted each other, you have two options: engage or retreat.

If you engage, you need to beware the risks of trying to reach the opponent with one pounce, or a long-range pounce. It would be better to pounce at an angle, and/or behind cover closer to the prey in a zigzagging pattern to avoid being picked off en route. Better yet, wallwalk on a wall or incline of some kind as you work your way closer, where you can be sure of pounce connection.

« Last Edit: Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:15am by Bruce Leenomorph »  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Bruce Leenomorph
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


Enter the Alien

Posts: 38
Location: Temple of Xenomorph Kung Fu
Joined: Feb 27th, 2011
Re: Lifecycle of the Alien
Reply #5 - Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:15am
Print Post Print Post  
If you retreat, wallwalking or hopping is preferable to using pounce prematurely. If necessary then pounce away, but try to keep it low(unless you need to clear a fence or obstacle) so as to avoid as much attention as possible. You can also pounce and wallwalk in combination to leap away and vanish into ducts, over ledges, down corridors, etc,...

So when using pounce as movement, consider its benefits and its drawbacks. If you don't care for stealth, or it is impossible, by all means use it as movement. That's what it's for. But do not grow lazy, and remember that it should be used as needed only, and not when you could accomplish the same feat without it.

That way, it becomes instinct, and instinct is what Aliens need to reach full potential.


Pounce, pt. 2: Attack

This is a subject that rightfully deserves much discussion. It's one of the primary ways for an Alien to kill a foe, and thus of no small value to an Alien player.

Now, as noted before, I stress again: the pounce does not have variable damage. Hit locations on or off, neither setting affects the damage. It is set. This is both a blessing and a curse. You can't kill a predator in one hit by pouncing them in the head, but no matter where you hit them you'll inflict massive damage.

A useful feature of the pounce is its stun effect. This combined with its huge damage makes it a deadly and oft-complained about technique. By hitting with a pounce and circling behind the slowed prey, victory is assured with a swipe of the claws.

Remember stances? They play an important role when pouncing to attack. A crouching drone or predalien can pounce through smaller openings, or even use it to pounce down an otherwise low-ceiling corridor.

As with movement, your pounce attack needs to be disregarded as a weapon. It must become just another natural ability of the Alien, usable on instinct as easily as claws or tail or wallwalk or you won't truly master it.

Keep in mind that there are always some disadvantages to what is otherwise an extremely dangerous attack. As mentioned before, stealth is not an option when pouncing. And it leaves you open if you miss, or even if you would hit and you pounce into the line of fire. Or getting caught up on the environment can be deadly.

The way to combat this is by always being aware of your environment, in addition to using your stances effectively within those environs. You also want to pounce as an attack only at close range, as discussed in part 1, or medium-range if you can be reasonably sure of a direct hit.

The reason for this is simple: "Don't shoot until you see the whites of their eyes."

By waiting until you are assured a hit, you leave yourself less open by not missing, and stunning the foe, thus lowering his ability to counterattack or defend himself further. Plus, at close- or near-medium range, an enemy has much less time to react to a pounce.

If you don't overuse the pounce in combat or in movement, you will be one step further on the road to mastery. By using it in moderation with the tail, claws, wallwalk and jumping, you become a whirling dervish of armor-piercing death.

When facing a melee pred, including net-gunners, remember to close range without using a pounce if possible, or use it as needed following the guidelines established last lesson. Save the pounce for a counter to an enemy's missed attack, or when you've successfully read an opponent's movements and can defeat them.

Don't make the mistake of thinking a successful pounce means the fight is over. Against a skilled warrior, nothing is guaranteed. Earlier today I killed many Aliens as a spear-wielding predator even after a pounce took most my life. Hitting with a pounce secures you an advantage, but that advantage can be squandered by superior skill or pure laziness on the Alien's part, luck or a combination of all three.

By eliminating extraneous and excessive use of the pounce, and using it without conscious thought, you increase your chances of hitting. When an Alien player only pounces when they know they're going to hit, they are on a higher of plateau of skill than those who pounce as much as possible.

Remember to use it in conjunction with all of your abilities and stances, because as a natural weapon the Alien must learn to use all its natural weapons to be the most effective Natural Born Killer possible.


« Last Edit: Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:15am by Bruce Leenomorph »  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Bruce Leenomorph
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


Enter the Alien

Posts: 38
Location: Temple of Xenomorph Kung Fu
Joined: Feb 27th, 2011
Re: Lifecycle of the Alien
Reply #6 - Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:16am
Print Post Print Post  
The Drone - Alien Advanced

Pounce, pt. 3: Differences

While not as important as the first two, this facet of pounce deserves some mention.

The differences in pounces between Aliens are obvious.

The runner's is the shortest distance, yet does the most damage.

The drone's does a lot of damage and can cover much height and distance. It is the most intuitive of the pounces, the most well-balanced and thus easiest to use.

The predalien's pounce is powerful in execution and damage, but not much stronger than the drone's. It can be difficult to hit with sometimes, given its faster launch and greater arc. Where you might hit with the drone's, you could miss with the predalien's due to this disparity. It can be compensated for, though, with time and effort.

The poor praetorian has no pounce, and suffers for it.

That's about it for pounce. This is a most useful technique, one part movement, one part attack. Few weapons the other species possess can equal it for sheer utility.

  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Bruce Leenomorph
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


Enter the Alien

Posts: 38
Location: Temple of Xenomorph Kung Fu
Joined: Feb 27th, 2011
Re: Lifecycle of the Alien
Reply #7 - Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:16am
Print Post Print Post  
The Queen - Alien Master

Welcome, warriors, to the Master level of Xeno Kung Fu. This training is a bit different than the previous levels. It focuses on honing specific skills and techniques, as well as specific combat situations.

As well, it focuses on the more esoteric elements of the martial arts, including Xeno Kung Fu. Even Advanced players tend to ignore these elements, thinking them inapplicable to a video game. As with all things that involve reflexes and skill, these elements certainly do apply.

For those of you that complete this level of training, no one in or outside of NBK can truthfully deny your skill. You will count among the best of the best to ever play the game. Good luck, warriors!

Seek perfection within to effect perfection without.

__________
Ok, one of the first things I want to talk about is Alien evaluations. I've held back on my opinions of the classes, but now I will give the reasons why I think each is good or bad, and which is the best.

Runner

To be honest, I despise the runner. Inexplicably, the game's makers gave it the strongest pounce of all the Aliens. Combined with its high ghost-shot count and the occasional one-pounce kill glitch on full-health preds, the runner is probably the most unbalanced character in the game.

I disable it in my own server, finding it requiring of less skill and finesse, and more unbalanced attributes. It is really fast, but can't take much damage. Its pounce is too short-ranged to be of any great use for travel.

Predalien

The PA is a whole different kind of beast. Big and slow, it's also exceptionally powerful. Its lack of speed, especially when crawling, is a fatal flaw in my opinion, limiting the PA's usefulness.

On the plus side, it can take a lot of damage, its pounce is strong, and its claws shred predators with ease.

In most maps, unfortunately, the PA's slowness is likely to hold the player back. Wallwalking with the PA is excruciatingly slow, especially when a quick advance or escape is needed.

Praetorian

For those who want a little bit o' the Queen without having to rack up kills on a single life. Powerful, capable of jumping extremely high, the Prae is a unique Alien.

It has no pounce, and no wallwalk, and both of those hurt it dearly. It exchanges them for extra armor; the problem is that this armor is of limited use. Snipers, bladed weapons, AP or explosive rounds, Alien claws... all can tear through even a Prae with surprising speed. It's not that hard to counter its increased armor.

Given its slowness while crawling and lack of mobility, this makes the Prae useful primarily in team games. With a pack of skilled Aliens, the Prae can single-handedly turn the tide of battle. Alone, the Praetorian is easy meat for preds and humans alike without ambush.

Queen

Similar to the Praetorian, the Queen possesses all its flaws but far greater strengths.

The tail has huge range, and so do the claws. Both are very damaging. The Queen runs very quickly, can jump really high and take an incredible amount of normal punishment.

Unfortunately, like the Prae, the Queen's size is its weakness. It is an easy target, and there are several weapons that tear through its life like nothing else. A single remote bomb in the head means death.

So to be honest, I don't like playing as a Queen. Their size and lack of mobility(wallwalk, pounce) mean you will lose when facing a skilled enemy, much less multiple enemies.

Drone

Ah, the mighty drone. My favorite of the Aliens.

Its black coloring lets it blend well in the shadows. It's fast and powerful, and while it can't absorb as much punishment as the heavier Aliens, it is far more agile.

The drone's pounce has the most intuitive use. Overall, it's the most well-balanced Alien, possessing enough speed and strength to persevere in any battle.

Highly maneuverable, durable, strong, the drone takes my vote for best overall Alien. I firmly believe that only through the drone can true mastery of the Alien be achieved.

Those who want to emphasize pure skill play drone.


Vs. Predators

There are two kinds of preds you can fight: ranged and melee. I find melee more fun, but either can provide a good challenge.

The melee preds you need to fear are the standard predator and the heavy pred(a.k.a. "fat pred"). Both have nets, both have spears. Being snared in a net at the wrong time is death, so it's something you'll have to work on avoiding. A skilled light pred can be dangerous with the claws, but not to the degree that true melee preds can.

There are some ways to do just that. For one thing, if the pred has the net gun out and is shooting net after net, it's not a good idea to directly approach. Not when the Alien is capable of so much more.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Bruce Leenomorph
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


Enter the Alien

Posts: 38
Location: Temple of Xenomorph Kung Fu
Joined: Feb 27th, 2011
Re: Lifecycle of the Alien
Reply #8 - Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:17am
Print Post Print Post  
Even pouncing directly at the pred, unless you're very close, is foolish at best. Even if you hit, you're likely to be netted. Against the fat pred, that pounce, even if it hits, is not likely to kill your enemy. This might save you from a normal pred, but don't count on it if the player is skilled.

A better idea is to strike when the predator runs out of ammo. Net guns don't have a very large clip, and he'll either shoot until he's out or switch to spear when he gets low. That is the time to attack. It's best if you can hit while the predator is switching weapons, or right afterward, but at least he will be off the net gun.

Now you're on more even terms. The standard pred is much quicker than his fat cousin, but also a lot easier to kill, especially with drone.

When facing a spear-wielder, or someone with claws, attacking from the front can be risky. A well-timed swing can end your life in a heartbeat. Obviously, you'd be best served by avoiding this deathstroke. To that end I suggest using all the abilities you have learned up to this point.

By now, you should be using all of your abilities and techniques both instinctually and to their fullest extent. To avoid being netted or sliced, use superior speed and agility. Hop and leap and wallwalk away, around corners or up walls, leaping off again to land behind or to the side of your foe, and attack.

If you can use that mobility to strike between shots, do so. Otherwise, keep moving and keep dodging until the pred stops firing nets and switches weapons. Then you can battle without fear of being confined, which is torture for one of us.

Beware! A good predator will use this very tactic to lure you into a place where he can get you. Even I have drawn Aliens closer by shooting to miss with nets, and then been ready for the bug when it got to me. Don't ever underestimate your foe, or you'll suffer the consequences.

A smart move is to be clawing even before a net strikes. If the pred shoots a net, do your best to avoid it but keep firing the claws just in case. That way, if you do get bagged, you'll have a head start on tearing free.

Many melee preds follow a pattern. Fuzzy likes to wait for you, and then high-jump overhead, turn and strike you as he comes down. This can be avoided easily if you know what you're dealing with.

First, know that the spear possesses equal(which is deceptive) range to your claws. Second, know that you need to be elsewhere when the pred is coming down. Now, high-jumping is a vulnerable time for predators.

As long as you're not directly in its path, you can pounce the predator as it lands, unable to move in midair. In fact, this is one of the better times to do so, especially against the durable fat pred.

A successful pounce or charged-up tail will usually lead to a standard pred's death. The fat pred, however, will require at least two pounces if at full health, plus a healthy dose of claws. Keep this in mind, because he is lethal up until you kill him. Even then, listen for the self-destruct, which is powerful for fat preds.

The final tactic for defeating melee preds is a crazy one. I said earlier that attacking head-on is unwise... unless it's the last thing your enemy expects.

If you circle and feint against a pred while standing, then drop to crouch, circle to the front and attack, you might catch 'em by surprise. If up until that point you'd been attacking from angles, a direct assault will be unexpected. The predator might swing overhead, or to the side. Just remember not to be predictable, and to use all your abilities to win the day.

Next we'll cover ranged preds.

Basically, there are only three you have to worry about. They are the light pred, ancient pred and assault predator. We'll cover each individually.

Light Predator:

Quick and agile, the light pred is one of the fastest characters in the game. Unfortunately, this speed comes with the disadvantage of much less health than other preds.

Its weapons are claws, speargun and remote bombs. Claws fall under melee, above. The speargun, however, is the ultimate sniper weapon. The LP can zoom in on you from across a map and take your head off with a single spear. There is no muzzle flash to guide you to your attacker, only your Alien senses.

Up close, the LP can unload barrages of triple-spears, increasing the likelihood of your death at his hands. Fortunately for you, this eats up ammo quickly. Unfortunately, on most maps the pred knows just where to go to get more. You must cut off this retreat if at all possible.

The bombs are extremely powerful, but the pred starts with only a handful of them. If they hit you, you die. Even an indirect hit can be fatal. They are slow, however, and you can always tell when the pred is throwing them. With wallwalk and pounce, you should be able to avoid them until the pred runs out of ammo.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Bruce Leenomorph
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


Enter the Alien

Posts: 38
Location: Temple of Xenomorph Kung Fu
Joined: Feb 27th, 2011
Re: Lifecycle of the Alien
Reply #9 - Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:18am
Print Post Print Post  
Of course, on some maps, there is plenty of bomb ammo available. In this case, you might not have the luxury of dodging a few then attacking. You will either have to retreat and try again, or go all-out to kill the predator. By now, you should know just how to do that.

It doesn't take much to kill a light pred, so if you connect with a pounce or head-claw or charged tail, victory should be yours unless your enemy is the superior combatant. And even then, pure power should carry you through to victory.

Assault/Ancient Predator:

These won't require as much explanation, since much of what they can do has been covered already.

The Assault pred uses remote bombs, and I think it has the netgun. Or maybe spear. I can't remember, because no one ever plays them. Anyway, if it's using a melee weapon, treat it like the standard melee pred. If it's using remote bombs, treat it like a slower light pred. Simple, right?

The Ancient pred uses spear and energy flechette. Once again, if it uses spear, then kill it like you would any melee pred. The flechette is fast but weak, really dangerous only if the pred is good at head shots. The best thing to do if you start getting shot by the flechette is to get out of the line of fire, locate the pred and attack. It's only a real problem if you're a slow or weak Alien. A healthy bug makes short work of the flechette.

Plus, the weapon eats through energy at an alarming rate, forcing one of two decisions on the predator's part. Either he will slow down or stop to conserve enough energy to heal, or he will shoot until he's out of energy. Either of these forces him to melee, and the latter puts him at a dangerous disadvantage. For this reason, you won't encounter a flechette-wielding predator very often.

Alrighty, some final notes.

Stealth against predators is difficult but not impossible. This is doubly true if humans are present.

If you see a pred chasing a human, he's likely using thermovision. This means you can get the drop on them both, as the human(busy fighting off a pred) is in bad shape to try and fight you off as well. Important: if you come upon a predator that has just netted a human, or is in the process of trying, don't jump in immediately. Wait for him to bag his prey. Then, predators are most vulnerable because almost all try to get the kill as quick as possible.

Strike, and you can both steal the kill and defeat the predator, gettin' two for the price of one.

Remember that crawling reduces noise, and if you can stay behind a predator long enough to line up a shot, they won't know you're there until it's too late.

Ideally you should play as the enemy species at least enough to become familiar with common weapons. That way, you know firsthand their strengths and weaknesses. Failing that, fight specific enemies repeatedly, preferably to the exclusion of all others, until you have mastered combat with those enemies.

And, if a ranged or melee pred continues to pose a problem, you can always call on your Hivemates for help. With the teamwork tactics discussed earlier, and all you've learned about using all your potential, not even the greatest warrior can withstand a combined assault.

Final note: when you knock a predator's mask off, destroy it immediately. This will cripple the pred, because they do not have shoulder lamps, and makes escape much easier if it becomes necessary.


Vs. Humans

The classic confrontation of good and evil. The purity of the Alien versus human evil, I mean. They are the monsters, the boogeymen, the defilers of the natural order. They kill living things, including each other, wantonly and without valid reason. They are abominations. They must pay.

Unlike predators, you will never face a melee human. Well, maybe, if the player is either messing around or truly foolish and wields the knife. Without an aimbot, the human should have no chance, not even with luck on his or her side. If you've reached this level of training, you should never fall to a knife-wielding human.

Humans are capable(as often I witness in the Dojo) of close-quarters battle, however, the closest thing to "melee" they get. As with predators, these skilled warriors can be incredibly challenging and fun to fight. Shotgunners are the most common example.

With this in mind, since the human classes are made distinct only by their weapons, it is these weapons we will discuss. I will be looking at this from the POV of facing a skilled player; with less-skilled warriors, at this level of Alien mastery, you shouldn't need any tips at all.

Knife

This comes up so rarely, and should never be a threat, that I won't even bother going into it.
« Last Edit: Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:19am by Bruce Leenomorph »  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Bruce Leenomorph
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


Enter the Alien

Posts: 38
Location: Temple of Xenomorph Kung Fu
Joined: Feb 27th, 2011
Re: Lifecycle of the Alien
Reply #10 - Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:19am
Print Post Print Post  
Pistol

More common than the knife, but probably the most rarely-used firearm, the pistol is not to be underestimated. Too many players make that mistake, only to learn that it's more damaging than anticipated.

The pistol isn't very accurate at range, but it's definitely up to snuff in close combat. Up to snuffing you, that is. 'Specially with AP rounds.

AP rounds are dangerous even to the mighty Praetorian, which also has a conveniently large head to target. That knowledge is best remembered, lest it costs you victory in its absence from your mind. Even the other Aliens are vulnerable to AP rounds, which do good damage and fire fairly rapidly.

Even normal rounds in the head can chew through your life rather quickly. It's best, like all guns, to be elsewhere when the bullets fly. Wallwalking, using the shadows and pouncing about can make this much easier. Use all your abilities! That can't ever be stressed enough

Unless out of ammo or very practiced with the weapon, most humans won't use it. It can be hard to tell which kind of player you face until it's too late, though, so approach each with caution, even if it is "only" a pistol-wielding human.

Shotgun

This is a dangerous weapon, and a favorite of many, many players. It comes with two types of ammo, each of which is suited to a different kind of killing.

Shells are the standard round, providing the spread-fire that shotgunners know and love. In a tight corridor or room, shells are a pain in the exoskeleton. They have a wide area of fire, and the lighter Aliens take serious damage from a direct hit(or more likely death). The human doesn't have to directly hit you to do good damage, which can also make you panic, and that's lethal in its own right.

Slugs are the big rounds, the rounds that tear up Praetorian and predalien alike. It's much harder to tag drones and runners with slugs, but it's a lot more painful when they do. The problem with the bigger two Aliens is that they are big and(relatively, in the Prae's case) slow. This makes them easy meat for slugs, especially in tight quarters. And as you know, the slugs kill even the heavily-armored Praes in short order.

No style, Kung Fu or Gun Fu, is without weakness. Well, except for a certain secret styles and techniques rumored to be the province of those beyond the Master level...

The shotgun's reload time is excruciatingly slow. If you're using pounce correctly as covered in Advanced, you should be ready by the time the reload starts to pounce, and be assured of it hitting. If you miss, your reload-strike opportunity is gone. If you hit, that human is a goner, because the reload slows as well as their movement. In no case should a reloading shotgunner that's successfully been pounced or stunned ever live longer than one second later.

Also, shells cover a wider range, so fighting head-on is not recommended. Rather, as you should know already, using wallwalk and speed and agility is the key to victory. Especially if you can rapidly move between the walls, floor and ceiling in a corridor, neither shells nor slugs are likely to hit you.

Pulse Rifle

Where the shotgun was a serious threat, this one requires life insurance to face on the field if the player is skilled. Long range and fully automatic, the pulse also has a long sustained fire rate. A full clip can take a bit to unload, so the enemy can hose your general direction down with bullets if they choose.

"Lieutenant, what do those pulse rifles fire?"
"10mm explosive-tip caseless, standard light-armor piercing round. Why?"

This should say it all. Pulse fire hurts, savaging all but the Praetorian in at most a second of sustained fire. At most. Even the Prae will fall if targeted in the head or legs, and it has a large head. Drones, runners and predaliens, as well as most predators, are slain rather quickly. Full-auto, large clip, long range and rapid-firing... the pulse rifle means business.

Worse still, it comes with pulse (gre)nades. These things are nasty to Aliens and their enemies. A direct or semi-direct hit means all but certain death for any Alien save Praes. They are rocket-propelled, meaning sidestepping the grenade at anything but extreme range is impossible.

Worried yet? If you're not, you've never faced Dar, or NBK-Gelatinous, or worse yet NBK-Eisaak. Eisaak defeated me on many of the occasions I fought him with the pulse rifle... not using nades. This weapon is deadly, and in the hands of a warrior equally skilled to you, is to be treated like the plague.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Bruce Leenomorph
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


Enter the Alien

Posts: 38
Location: Temple of Xenomorph Kung Fu
Joined: Feb 27th, 2011
Re: Lifecycle of the Alien
Reply #11 - Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:20am
Print Post Print Post  
Once again, only the full range of your Alien skills will save you. When approaching on the ground is walking into a hail of lead, take to the sky. Don't pounce long distances to the foe, giving them plenty of time to compute your landing and destroy you. Rather, leap from wall to wall, roof to roof, tower to tower. Scurry around the sides and leap to attack your foe from closer range, while he exhausts his ammo trying vainly to hit you.

Ambush the enemy in tight-quarter maps, rather than run a gauntlet down "dm_auriga's" corridors through streams of bullets. Tail whip the foe, move behind and behead them, or rip off a foot. Lurk unmoving above a doorway and pounce the enemy as they come through, oblivious to your presence.

Grenade Launcher

This is not a weapon commonly seen in the Dojo, for several reasons. First, it has two types of tracking fire, and I highly disapprove of any weapon that even remotely aims itself. Second, it takes no skill to lauch a bunch of spider or prox nades at a door and thus kill whoever comes running through. It's the ultimate in laziness. Third, the Dojo emphasizes close-quarters, skilled combat, the kind that actually requires you to face your enemy.

So, I'm really not going to go into this one too much. If you find yourself facing launcher-user, I'd suggest using the ambush and agility skills mentioned throughout this training and under "Pulse Rifle" above.

Flamethrower

A perennial favorite of those facing the hungry darkness. The flamethrower is deadly, make no mistake about it.

The enemy can hose you down with fire, making it nearly impossible to get through to attack without being burned. Sustained jets of flame kill you very quickly, and even getting torched once can mean death for the runner. As well, it obscures vision for both you and the enemy.

Once again, it takes all our mastery of Xeno Kung Fu to deal with this weapon. In tight corridors and small rooms, you're in serious trouble against someone who knows how to do more than just spam flame. You've only a couple options, really.

The best suggestion is to avoid ground movement, unless the walls or ceiling somehow make it easier to hit you. If the enemy is struggling to follow your crazy movements over wall, ceiling and ground, they are struggling to burn you.

You must also attack as quickly as possible, or retreat. If you cannot kill your foe, you should always be moving on, anyway. This means tail whip and pounce, preferably at an angle down from a ceiling or wall, and claw the human's head or feet off. Flamethrower's ammo is limited, but it lasts more than long enough for them to unload it without stopping through an entire fight. Thus, your choices are either kill the enemy or escape.

Stealth and stalking helps, as well as ambushing around a shadowy corner or above a doorway. In more open maps, you have a bit more leeway. With freedom of movement, the flamethrower should never touch you. When you attack, strike quickly and accurately to put the threat down permanently.

If the worst should happen and you find yourself aflame, you have to immediately make a decision based on your health. If you know you'll survive the burn, you can either retreat or try to kill your enemy as fast as possible. If you know you won't survive, you need to get savage on the human and hopefully kill them before you die yourself.

Smartgun

As with all tracking weapons, with one notable exception explained below, this is disabled in my server. I don't feel that weapons that aim themselves require true skill, and since all combat in the Dojo is meant to improve and emphasize skill, that means I don't use tracking weapons. They're lame.

Rocket Launcher

There are two reasons I sometimes enable this weapon. First, I never, ever use tracking rockets. Second, when using even normal rockets you're nearly as likely to kill yourself as anyone else. Of course, half the fun for me is blowing myself up along with an enemy.

So if you find yourself facing an rocket-using enemy, you'd best be careful. One rocket, even an indirect hit, is pretty much guaranteed death to the smaller Aliens. Even the mighty Prae and queen can't stand up to rockets for long.

Fortunately, the rocket launcher has a couple weaknesses. One is a very small clip size, only three rockets at a time. Another is its lethality toward its user. If you can get close, the enemy might kill himself along with you, thus negating the kill. The launcher also slows its user drastically, and as we all know, in the world of Kung Fu, speed determines the winner. The launcher is both obvious and, when not using tracking, relatively easy to avoid at range. Superior speed and agility will get you out of the way every time.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Bruce Leenomorph
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


Enter the Alien

Posts: 38
Location: Temple of Xenomorph Kung Fu
Joined: Feb 27th, 2011
Re: Lifecycle of the Alien
Reply #12 - Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:21am
Print Post Print Post  
Finally, the same rules apply as when facing other super-destructive weapons of the humans. If you cannot defeat the enemy directly, use the Alien's natural talents for ambush and stealth to turn the tide. You can't blast an enemy you can't find.

Minigun

Ol' Painless. A favorite of most corporate players, nothin' chews you up faster than this weapon. The good players are deadly accurate with it, despite its high recoil and blinding muzzle flash. Of course, quite a few players probably disable the muzzle flashes for that reason, but still...

The best way to fight this weapon is not getting hit by it. Treat it like the rocket launcher for purposes of countermeasures. In open maps, you will have an easier time due to being able to freely use your mobility. In more enclosed spaces, given the human's motion tracker, your best bet is surprise. Trying to navigate a corridor while being shot to pieces is not a good way to go. If the way is clear, go for it. If the enemy is there, advancing in your direction, lie in wait and strike like a ninja from the shadows.

Once again, the tail is your best friend here. Whipping the enemy slows them down, and so does using the minigun, so they'll be really slow. Ample opportunity to slay your foe at that point. If you do get caught in an enclosed area with a minigunner, you should probably retreat at the earliest opportunity to do so. If you can't, or it's actually safer to attack than retreat, then go in with claws swinging and tail whipping, and use wallwalk to your advantage. Quick changes of stance and wallwalking are your only hope.

Railgun

The final stop on our human-weapons tour. You're kind of at an advantage to learn by this point, though, given all you've already learned about the weapons and about the Alien. Many of the same rules apply to this as the more dangerous of the weapons discussed above.

For starters, unless you are Praetorian, queen or fat pred, you die when you get shot. There are certain miraculous events where sometimes you survive, but this is as far as I know a glitch.

This weapon is also, predictably, the longest-ranged of all human weapons. Also, it is a very stable weapon, so if a good sniper has you in their sights you are dead.

True, its rate is somewhat slow, but not slow enough. It's loud, but the sniper rarely cares about that.

Your best bet is to be aware of snipers at all times. Chances are they're going to start shooting from extreme range, unless the map is a tight one. Now, this presents a sort of paradox: it's dangerous to be at long range, as it means you must close distance while being shot at. It's also dangerous to be at close range, especially from the fight's outset, as it gives the sniper a much better chance to hit you on the first couple of shots.

So medium range is probably the best range at which to engage a sniper. If you aren't hemmed in, you can strafe, hop and wallwalk as needed while moving closer to your prey. If you can keep them cut off from an ammo box, you only have to avoid ten shots. Easier said than done, but ten is better than twenty.

Also, when close enough to attack, pounce in between shots. Wait until immediately after a missed shot to pounce, or make a different move if that's your intent. If you try to strike outside of the weapon's cooldown time, you risk certain and foolish death. Make even one single mistake, or even if you don't, and NBK-Fungus for example, would make short work of you.

As above, so below. Use stealth, ambush, speed and agility, unexpected angles via walls and ceilings, to make it as difficult as possible for the human to shoot you while you tear its head off.


Vs. Aliens

I shouldn't need to say anything about this. If you've completed the training up to this point, and you know your enemy has or is similarly skilled, then you know what to expect. Xeno Kung Fu battles are like any fight between wisened masters. They circle and feint, dodge, summon their chi and line up a strike. The attack comes quickly and decisively, ending the fight for one warrior.

The most dangerous species in the universe is an Alien... even to another Alien.



The Art of War

A long time ago, the wandering monk Bodhidarma came upon a group of monks who trained their minds fanatically. However, in the process they neglected their bodies, becoming frail and weak. Bodhidarma showed these monks a series of simple exercises, which they then integrated with their own mental arts. Thus was born Kung Fu, or "skill and effort" or "hard work."

Throughout history, humans from all over have developed amazing unarmed combat techniques. More than a few are patterned after animals; ancient humans saw that animals possessed no forged weapons, no firearms, but they seemed to do just fine, thank you very much. And so many styles of Kung Fu are patterned after the movements of animals.
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Bruce Leenomorph
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


Enter the Alien

Posts: 38
Location: Temple of Xenomorph Kung Fu
Joined: Feb 27th, 2011
Re: Lifecycle of the Alien
Reply #13 - Mar 1st, 2011 at 11:21am
Print Post Print Post  
This is a lesson that we practicioners of Xeno style Kung Fu should take to heart. We can develop our own unique versions of the style, and should, in fact. You can even develop variants based on existing animal styles. What about using the swaying, unpredictable movements and lightning-fast attacks of Mantis style even as an Alien?  Here's a hint: you can.  This whole training has been about that very thing. 

(TBC)


The above was as far as I got... as I said, mostly complete collections of things I've learned playing the game.  They could use a little work, but there's no point for me to do that, now.  That's why I pass this wisdom on to you, grasshopper... that you might one day resurrect a thriving Hive from the ashes.  That you might one day carry on the ancient tradition of Kung Fu fighting.   

Go forth, and breaketh thine enemies with thy bare hands!
  
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
wolfblade
Spawnkiller
*
Offline


"Let's split some wigs!"

Posts: 3
Joined: Apr 6th, 2015
Re: Lifecycle of the Alien
Reply #14 - Apr 6th, 2015 at 6:35am
Print Post Print Post  
Bruce, surprised you didn't say too much about fighting predators equipped w/a Combistick.
  

-Wolf
Back to top
 
IP Logged
 
Page Index Toggle Pages: [1] 2 
Send Topic Send Topic Print Print