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Thread: On FOB duty

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    On FOB duty

    1. Intro & Disclamer
    People that say that there's nothing to do in FOB duty baffle me. I have never, in my almost 2 years of playing felt like I had nothing to do in the FOB. Now, I was initially prodded to write a FOB guide, because the FOB squads (Mostly my beloved Bravo) had apparently gone to shit in my absence. This idea has developed over the days into some sort of wall-of-texty-attempt at philosophizing over FOB duty. I wasn't too sure on the helpfulness of it all, but hey, I promised it, so I'll deliver it. If nothing else, it helped me think about my understanding of the game, and while I assume that many of the situations are probably nothing more than wishful thinking, that’s what ideals are about. This is how I understand FOB duty. My FOB doctrine if you may.
    Disclamer: This is not an engineering guide per se. The last section is about engineering basics, but if you want to see those ideas applied, you should definitively check the engineer wiki page and the guides linked in them. They are pretty solid. Instead, this is about FOB management, and has ideas and tips for every single member of the FOB squad. Most of them have touches of engineering, obviously, but I just highlight the basic concepts that everyone should know even if they don’t plan on playing engineering at all.

    2. A note about myself, some history, and hopes for the future
    For those that do not know me, I play Vanessa ‘Pocket’ Miller, and I was for a long time, a Bravo engie and since its introduction, a miniengie main. I want to believe that I helped push engineering forwards, to the point where some of my Pocket fob designs, and their girderspam were basically considered meta, with some small changes here and there. But where I sat comfortably in autistic, small, cluttered, yet efficient FOBs that could be built by one person with little help, other engies and synths took my designs to even further extremes, to the point where literally HUNDREDS of walls being autistically torn, and buildings completely stripped of all their metal in coordinated operations, to fuel the ever-growing FOB monstrosities of that era. A typical siege would usually last hours. For a couple of months, we engineers were untouchable. Everyone wanted to be one, and we proverbially spat at the face of the gods, as we laughed. It was glorious. It was true engineering, but our ambitions were surpassed by an even greater force: You see, all that engineering magnificence produced a shockwave of xeno tears. So loud it was, that it forced the devs (All of them are xeno mains, do not let them fool you) to get out of their caves, and whip out the nerfhammer. Even then, it took 3 consecutive shattering nerfs to put an end to that golden era of engineering.

    Now, I learnt engineering by reading other guides, observing successful FOBs and forts and iterating those ideas and my own, until I found the style that suited my playstyle better. As with all doctrines, it’s not perfect, and we must remember that different ideas serve different purposes. In the end, we don’t have infinite resources (Be it mats, manpower or space), so you have to limit your FOB to whatever it is that you believe to be most important.
    I encourage you to do the same, and find what clicks for you. You will face criticism, and someone will inevitably call you a retard. It may even be me. It’s ok. Have a positive mindset, and try to learn from that criticism however crude and demeaning it is. Be the next step of a new rise of the FOB squads, and another sea of xeno tears!

    3. Basic concept
    Before knowing how to be successful at FOB duty (And rightfully blame the mission’s failure on someone else), we will need to define what a FOB is, and how to maintain it. Now, everyone has a different conception of what a FOB is, and its priorities, and this is what separates all the different doctrines. This guide will offer my point of view, but please, feel free to have your own, and adjust your priorities as such.

    In my opinion, a successful FOB is something that should, in this order:
    • Ensure a proper evac: This means buying enough time to load marines and materials into the dropship. If the battle has reached the FOB, chances are the mission is not going as well as it should. Saving marine lives and resources (And denying xenos of captures!) is the number 1 priority to make a final stand in the Almayer.
    • Provide medical care, rest and resupply for wounded marines: The FOB should be a rallying point for wounded and retreating marines. After a failed expedition, a 5 minute rest in a fortified and secure place, where marines can resupply and rearm easily can do miracles to squad morale. Compare that to being pushed back, only to see a shitFOB with idiots wandering around like mindless zombies, while xenos are already probing their weak defenses. You know the feeling.
    • Cull xeno numbers by killing their baldies: A robust xeno will almost never die to a FOB, but same as marines, xeno forces are made of 20% robust players and 80% baldies. The FOB grind will kill those baldies, hopefully weakening the xeno horde.
    • Organize and make good use of resources: Not much to say, resources are everything. They limit you, and they should be well managed in order to make full use of them.
    • Be accessible: Basically, Mobility and maximum firepower. I rate it lower than the others, and thus, my FOBs tend to be small, hard to maneuver around, and they clutter up quickly, limiting marine defensive options, but they work great with little manpower. In an ideal world, you don’t want that, but compromises have to be made.

    *Notice how among all of these, there is not a ‘Survive’ point. A 100% robust xeno team with sufficient numbers, wouldn’t lose a lot xenos against the scariest FOB you can imagine. That is because xenos always have ways to overcome marine defenses IF( and this is a big if) they play correctly. Your job is to make that as hard as possible, and hopefully make them die in such numbers that they have to lift the siege.

    Now onto each one specifically:

    4. Evac Procedure
    A poorly planned evac is 10 out of 10 times chaos. You have wounded left behind, everyone rushing into the Alamo pushing each other, materials left there to rot, baldies blowing up 10 marines with a nade… Luckily, when an evac is properly called and executed, some people keep a cool head and do things right. But that’s not enough, you are the FOB squad, and as such, it is your duty to perform the evac flawlessly:
    • Communication: Evac is called by Command, but they are not omniscient, and can be misled by a panicking baldie, or be too absorbed to call it in time. Thus, you need to inform them of the situation in your front. I guarantee you that save for the worst of the worst CICs, Command will listen to SLs, engineers, and comm-active marines in this regard.
      It definitively is an acquired feel that you have to develop, but I can estimate how much time could the FOB hold a big attack, and I’m not afraid to communicate it. If you are in charge of a section, be liberal with these reports, and update every time something important happens: Eg.<We got 5 MD pings in Tcoms’, ‘second line, complete with a compartment, finished’, ‘First line breached, 2 to go’, ‘ Hole plugged. North Caves back to 3 lines>. This is what Command needs to hear in order to make informed decisions, and not only for evac. If the situation turns dangerous, make sure to demand an immediate evac plan, and get it sorted before they breach the FOB. As a rule of thumb ,if you are down to your last double sandcade/metal line, you better have the evac already sorted Shipside, and ready to get ordered if the situation keeps deteriorating.
    • The announcement: This is a sign of a good CO. Giving a definitive time for everyone to be onboard is priceless. Eg. <EVAC is called. Departure will be at 14:35. Pack up>. It will make sure that even the ungas that think they can stay for a bit more get onboard. If the CO doesn’t do that, as SL (or aSL), suggest that he makes an announcement with a timer, giving 1-5 minutes depending on the severity of the situation. Ideally you want everything packed, and that will take a lot less if everything is organized, but if you are in a rush, evaccing is more important than saving resources.
    • The wounded: Crits are most important because they cannot move themselves, and they can be a good source of larva for aliens if left behind. The lightly wounded and the medics will usually carry them into the Alamo, but keep an eye on them just in case.
    • Mats, ammo, and medical supplies: They are vital for any Almayer defense. The second the xenos hack the dropship, req stops getting stuff from ASRS, and if the game has gone for long enough, medical supplies in medbay may be low, so without those rescued supplies, attrition will be too high, and you won’t hold SD, nor tankbay, nor anything.
    • Sentries and M56ds: As important as they can be in the Almayer, they are needed in place to keep the xenos at bay until the last second. If you take them down the second the evac is called, the xenos will have an easier time breaching in, and then it’s all clown fiestas from there. M56ds in particular are very quick to dismantle and transport.
    • Marines: They are last, but they are the most important. Obviously, you need manpower to move all the supplies and wounded inside the dropship, but you don’t want them captured, so you should gradually get everyone inside to avoid last minute jams.
      * Salty tip: For the love of god, if you are inside the dropship, on a safe position, BUCKLE UP or REST and don’t wander around shuffling and pushing everyone around like a moron.
    • Sacrifices: Sometimes, things are not ideal, and you need to sacrifice something. A good sacrifice can earn you a good minute or two until you fix your problems. Marines, unless they volunteer to slow xenos down before nading/OBing themselves, are the main priority. Then generally, mats, then sentries and M56s, then medical supplies, then ammo, then the rest, but this can vary depending on your game.

    5. Medical and resupply
    • Medics belong in the frontlines: Let’s get rid of the elephant in the room first: Many FOB duty medics rush to the front, and they make a pretty good case in that they are sorely needed there. I actually agree, but I also believe that at least One medic should stay, no matter what. Wounded and revivable marines will trickle towards the fob, and nothing sucks more than being defibbable/infected, and having no medics or stasis bags around. Plus, the FOB squad can and will get harassed, and they will need light medical help.
    • Medbays: Some maps like LV LZ1 have severe space limitations, but if you can spare some, happily build a medical bay, complete with a field OR if a doctor wants to deploy. Gather the medical supplies there, salvage a few medvendors, and use disposable cades like hand rails, wood, or inflatables to delineate it. Whatever it is, don’t wire them (if you use expensive cades), since it should be in the inner circle either way, and it’s just for keeping wandering ungas out, not for repelling an assault. If the xenos reach it while the good medics are doing their magic, you have failed the above evac, and you have a real shitshow in your hands. Good cades or wire aren’t not gonna help here.
    • Supply inefficiency: Marines litter. A LOT. Have you ever been in a fob that has 3 sentries and a crate full of mats buried under garbage? Been looking for AP mags and your PC suffered ten strokes for rightclicking shitpiles?(Protip: walk next to the pile and use Alt+click) Well I have, and it’s not fun. There is an easy solution. Having marines organize shit. Now, in my opinion, CTs should deploy and help with this, but for some reason, some ROs don’t think that way, so get ready to do it yourselves.
    • Resupply zones: Marines in the FOB squad can easily pile supplies up in tidy packs and throw garbage away (into no-man’s land), so that everyone finds what they want. Buckshot? Right there, in the buckshot pile next to all the other ammo piles. Sandbags? Right there, next to the metal and plasteel piles. Organizing supplies not only boosts morale by a lot, but also cuts time on resupplying marines, and lets you see in a second what supplies do you have, and ask for the ones you need, avoiding unnecessary orders, or otherwise wasting points that could had gone to other defcon grants, or other supplies.
      I’ve noticed that just having items in piles, separated by category usually works, and everyone will grab whatever they need. Same as with Medbays, if you delineate it, or if a CT wants to run a minireq planetside, more power to you. Just remember that same rules apply, use cheap mats.
    • The announcement: Even if you build an amazing medbay, chances are marines and medics won’t use it and decide to treat people wherever, cluttering the FOB. Make sure to communicate with command and your squad medics so they can inform the rest of the marines by announcement and radio. Keeping the medics and the healthy ungas separate will greatly improve mobility and space in the FOB.
      The resupply zone suffers less from this issue, since marines just look for whatever they need, and it shouldn’t be hidden either way. Still, it’s nice to announce.

    6. Xeno killing: All in the grind
    • The grind: There is a wide misconception here. People think that attrition wars, which FOB sieges are, are bad for marines. I disagree: Simplistically, an attrition war is a matter of resources generated vs resources lost. The number will rarely be positive for either side, and the one that falls too low to keep up will lose. Needless to say, there are a lot of resources involved, and it gets pretty complicated, but in the end, what I found to be the limiting factor that defeats a siege is numbers. 7 xenos cannot breach a properly manned 2 liner FOB, even if they are all robust as hell, and vice-versa, an already depleted marine force won’t hold a FOB siege for long.
      Now, Marines generate manpower through time, defcon grants, and in really dire situations, forced mobilization of shipside crew (and CL and admin bs), and they lose it through getting injured or dying. Xenos however, generate manpower through captures alone. Age and caste influences the quality of that manpower, but so do supplies to the marines, and the higher castes require a minimum level of lower castes to evolve, and yadda-yadda-yadda... In the end, I’d love to sit all day crunching numbers, but I’ll simplify it all by saying, Kill xenos, don’t get captured.
      You may say: <Well DUH, you just wrote a paragraph to tell me that shit, you nerd?>, which is a very valid point, but then again, marines get captured in sieges ALL THE FUCKING TIME, and it’s the only enemy resource generator that you can somewhat control.
      You are better dead than captured, don’t go out without a nade in your backpack.

      The other part of the equation, is of course, the killing. Fortunately, a well-designed FOB has a lot of tricks up its sleeve. Again, remember that the robust xenos will rarely fall for this, but we’re aiming at culling their numbers. In no particular order:
    • Xeno greed: The number one death factor for xenos, period. On long sieges, it’s not only you that gets tired. Xenos do so as well, and they may grow more complacent or daring. The longer the siege is going on, the more mistakes xenos will make. If you don’t give them easy captures, their numbers will fall steadily in the grind.
    • Air support. Mortar, CAS and OBs: Double-edged massive baldie punishers. Get good at coordinating these with infantry charges or sniper/scoped fire, and you have yourself a game winner. Get bad at using them, and … Yea. Remember those massive girderspam forts I talked about in the history section? I swear to god half of the ones that fell, did so because some baldie called an OB on top of them.
      * Too many Jtacs: There is such thing as too many Jtacs in a squad. Try to limit your Jtac orders to one person per weapon, unless you have an unbelievably good shot, it gives the operators a much easier time.
    • Tank: What can I say, a good tank crew wins games by themselves. It is an invaluable weapon. Not much you can do for it except having enough fuel, making the FOB tank accessible, praying that it reaches it in one piece, and helping repair it from time to time.
    • Compartments and killzones: I’ll go more in detail in the Key Principles of Engineering section, but basically, compartimentalizing a FOB makes safe fallbacks, reduces the impact of breaches in the lines, thus slowing xeno advancement, and they can increase firepower over a certain area (Killzone).
    • Open firelanes: The more open space xenos have to traverse to reach the cade line, the more they expose to fire. Walls around your cade lines help xenos get to them. Clear them out.
    • Specs and SGs: Arguably, your best weapon against xenos. In good hands, a spec is extremely deadly, and can punish small xeno mistakes like no other marine. SGs are just massive, unimpeded DPS machines. Make sure they are supplied and healed up.
    • Sentries and M56ds: They provide the heavy firepower support that you need to kick xenos away. Contrary to popular belief, a sentry won’t protect much on its own. It may kick a runner out of the cades, but even a warrior will be able to breach eventually, and a bunch of xenos will eat the defenses in a heartbeat. Plus, sentries can’t talk, so please, don’t think of sentries as a manpower substitute.
    • Claymores: Some people see them as useless, and they certainly won’t kill by themselves, but a claymore placed directly in front of a sentry, a manned M56d, or even a prepared marine is lethal. Again, remember that we are not trying to kill the chad xenos, but the bald ones.
      *Story time: One game, I had a robust runner harassing in north caves, trying to scout for weakensses in the FOB. He obviously saw the two claymores that we placed. Nevertheless, when one of my guard teammates got out of the cade line for some reason, he jumped her, and a second, bald runner jumped in as well. The bald runner ate the claymore, stunned everyone involved, and we managed to kill the robust one. We sent the marine to a medic, set a new claymore in the exact same spot, and guess who comes and eats the SAME CLAYMORE AGAIN? Bingo.
      Recapping, they are amazing at killing overstressed and bald xenos. I consistently get kills with them. Plus, runners run so fast, that it’s actually hard for them to avoid claymores. Great at thinning the horde.
      * Ghetto claymores: You COULD leave grenades, and prime them with fire. It is unreliable, since the time to blow up is random, but grenades can easily be hidden under garbage, unlike claymores. It’s not a popular strat, and it misfires more than you’d expect, but it’s yet another little trick that you can use.
    • Plasteel doors: Having a marine open and quickly close a plasteel door is a great way of trapping a careless xeno inside the cade line. That xeno may cause some damage, but it is guaranteed to die. All in all, a nice little trick.
    • Marine Charges: Best paired with CAS, mortars and OB strikes, If the xenos took a lot of damage in one of their charges, a fast counter-charge tends to have great effect. This is more the job of other squads, but if you see the chance, don’t miss it. Make sure you have everyone on the same page, and mass charge the second the queen screeches/their momentum stops. You’ll get a bunch of kills, and you can just go back to the safety of your glorious FOB, or keep up the pressure (but don’t overdo it. Again, getting captured is the worst thing you can do in a grind).
    • Concentrated firepower: Having someone lead the defense of the front, and ACTUALLY asking for concentrated fire on a certain xeno does wonders. Lesser tiered xenos don’t expect every marine in the line to suddenly open fire on them.

    7. Resources
    We have a bunch of major resources that we need to manage, in order to build a proper FOB:
    • Time: You can’t control it directly, but FOB building is a race against time. If the mission goes well, you may not even need a FOB in the first place, but if it does, xenos can be knocking on your door as soon as 12:40, or 12:45. By that time, you need to at least have enough cades to ask for an evac, and go through the procedure. It’s not as easy as it sounds, but squad cohesion and perfroming the individual role jobs (Jobs section) will help you have a decent FOB in time to greet the xenos.
    • Manpower: You can control it by having a secure FOB and a proper medical service. Good defenses lead to less injured, and the better off the medics are, the faster the wounded will jump back to action. You can technically also control it through defcon level, but you are not going to be in charge of that.
      A common mistake people make is making the FOB too big for their manpower. It doesn’t matter how big your FOB is, if you cannot defend it all. Those wasted mats that could had probably been better used elsewhere. Either stockpiling for repairs, reinforcing weaker flanks, or securing roads towards forward bases (those are assumed losses, but they help out a lot). This is why guard duty is so important.
      * Dealing with lack of manpower: Now, it is a fact of life that half your squad is gonna fuck off to the front lines, and unless they are called Mudder, they most likely won’t return. If you can keep them in the FOB, great, do so, but if you can’t FUCK THEM. You need to work with what you have, and what you have are the marines that actually want to follow orders and build a FOB, even if that means that your effective force goes up to 90% baldies. I’ll take a baldie that stays before a robust unga to manage a FOB any day. They may not win the day, but they will learn, and in time, become good fobbits.
      Reinforcements are much less likely to rush to the frontlines, and you can tie them down to the FOB easily, improving your numbers.
    • Supplies: They are everything you need to support the troops, from mats, to ammo, medical supplies, flares, food... You name it. You get these from ASRS, vendors, engies, miniengies, salvaging... But most importantly, they all come down through Req. Having a good Req team is crucial (And they in turn depend on a good IO team, and they in turn… You get it). If they are really bald, do whatever you can with what you have, and there are ways involving the CO/XO if needed, but don’t expect a stellar FOB.
      * Mats: Mats are the lifeblood of a FOB team. Without mats, cade construction grinds to a halt, and everyone hates sitting on their ass while they wait for an SD (Supply Drop, for the boots). Hopefully the jobs section will give you something to do in the mean time! An experimented builder will know what their front needs, and will order it through your SL or directly to req ASAP. Priorities still exist, and req can be a bit of a bottleneck, but ordering stuff ahead of time will keep the machine in motion. A great req team can easily drop 2 crates every 5 minutes full of supplies, so don’t be hesitant to order what you need.
      * On dumb autistic shit fun projects: I get it, they are fun, but if you don’t even have a single cade line in every front, and an engie wants to waste 10 sandcades and 3 plasteel doors, all wired, to make his autism fort for the mortar, I have the same tip as for the planetside medbay and req. As an SL (or otherwise superior rank in charge of the FOB), tell him to FUCK OFF, hopefully with a megaphone/intense whistling, and give him a stack of wooden planks to keep the ungas away. Mats are needed elsewhere, and the mortar spot has never helped defend anything either way.
    • Morale: Morale is not a tangible resource, but it is very important. You can control it through various methods, but most importantly, a good SL will keep morale up by visiting the different fronts, chatting up in person, and encouraging radio chatter, even if it’s inconsequential. Plus it builds team spirit for future games, and that’s amazing. Having things finished and organized also does wonders in this front. Morale can make or break a siege. This is a job that gets seldom done. In reality, a good portion of the FOB squad SLs wanted to join another squad. Still you are in the FOB squad, and your job is to keep it up, so I'll tell you what they told me the first time I joined the server: <'Suck it up, princess'>.

    8. Jobs
    <The main reason why it seems that there is nothing to do in FOB duty, is because every single job that needs to be done, is given exclusively to engineers, who consequently stress the fuck out and quit, leaving everyone wondering why we don’t have engineer mains’. Me, 2019>

    From the mighty SL to the lowliest unga, everyone can serve a role in the FOB squad. I’ll go from lower to higher. Higher positions will be able to do everything that the lower ones can, but realistically, they have other things to do. Still, if you’re tired of reading at this point, I ask of you to read at least the PFC, and your jobs.

    - PFC (not miniengie): (these are not one man jobs, and several PFCs can work on them):
    • Grab engineering supplies: Engineering has one of the two water tanks (the other is in the hangar south of the Alamo, grab that one as well) that you can count on for FOB defending, because the spitters will melt the ones planetside if they have half a brain. While you’re there, ask for some inflatable barriers (they have 3 boxes) to at least delineate the medical zones. If they refuse, deem them retarded, and block them on discord (just kidding, but seriously, refusing is a massive dick move. 99% of the games, they sit in storage untouched).
    • Pack marine supplies: A lot of people pack flares, ammo, and food, which is great, but not many pack permanent lighting. Just grab a backpack or two, and fill them with rail-flashlighted pistols. No more having to waste flare packs every 20 minutes to light up the FOB.
      Big extinguishers are all around in firelockers. Grab a backpack, and fill it with them, then distribute them along every front. If an engie from another squad asks for one, hand it to him tho.
    • Build wood/inflatable cades: They are almost useless as a defense, but as I said, you can set up a medbay, mortar pit, and Req with them. This saves real mats for where they’re really needed. You can also make floor tiles and make your guard post more cozy. The sky is the limit! Salvage them wherever you can find them. Worst case scenario, politely ask the RO to order some inflatables or wood, explaining why you want it. If he survives the seizure, he may as well order some for you, just due to the size of your massive balls. That, or you’ll get shot. (Now seriously, it's a waste of points. Don't do this last thing)
    • Wire cades: You cannot build wire, but you can apply it. Ask the engies to hand you the wire, it will cut a lot of their build time.
    • Fill sandcades: Remember how sandcades are the best cade ever? You don’t because I moved that part forward, but still, anyone can build them. You can ask engies for more wire and build your own defenses. Empty sandbag stacks make Baby Jesus cry!
    • Repair cades: FOBs suffer from small probings and incursions to large assaults. Sometimes a baldie drops a primed grenade and damages the cades. Grab those filled sandcades and repair them!
      Also, if you see a cade being melted with spitter acid, grab the extinguisher that should be around the front, and put it out while a buddy shoots the lizard.
    • Salvage supplies: Every LZ has tools ready for you to use. Grab a wrench and go HAM on those tables and chairs. You can also decon windows for 2 metal, but they make good defensive positions, and you cannot build them back up, so try not to decon ones that can help defenses, and in doubt, ask an engineer.
      Permadead also have a lot of supplies. If you know someone is permadead, feel free to loot their stuff before sending them up. You’d be surprised at the amount of good stuff people die with.
      Whatever it is that you do, just don’t go alone. Ask your SL for a fireteam to salvage nearby buildings if he hasn’t done that already, and loot them from metal, wood, water tanks/extinguishers, medivends, toys, and other useful stuff that people may need.
    • Go on patrols: Builders get targetted by smart xenos, your job is protecting them, and that means patrolling the perimeter. Same as with salvaging, just don’t go alone. Ask your SL if he hasn’t set up a patrol already.
    • Shoot walls down: Sometimes engies have some autistic projects. Sometimes your CO is Tom ‘The Wallcucker’ Dinkle. Either way, deconstructing walls usually sucks, and 90% of the time a PFC with a bag full of M39 ammo or a box of buckshot will do the trick faster. I believe that a good wall is a dead wall, but just in case, do ask your engies about that one as well.
    • Set up claymores: Everyone can set them up, and pick them back up with a multitool when the cade line advances. Just ask an engie to borrow his, or grab one from the LZ surroundings. Whatever you do, don’t leave claymores inside your compartments, or bad things will happen.
    • Be a spotter for the mortar/CAS: For the mortar, this involves grabbing the binocs in the mortar, and going around the FOB, getting coords for chokepoints of a possible attack, then writing them down in notes, or a piece of paper or wherever. Calibrate the mortar with a flash round, and you’re ready to give the xenos hell!
      For CAS, just grab a Jtac from req, and be decent at it. I’m not asking for xx720N05c0p3xx plays, just don’t fuck up and CAS the FOB. Please…
      Now seriously, I’ll reiterate again. Your squad just needs ONE designated Jtac. Period. You can have more waiting for their turn, but multiple lazes from the same squad will confuse the POs and that usually leads to FUN. Furthermore, other squads need the Jtacs more than you. Ideally the SL does it, but the SL is gonna be busy with shit. Same with engineers and medics, so it’s up to you.
      If you are the chosen one, please grab coords for drops if your SL hasn’t done it already, and write them down somewhere in case they are needed.
    • Organize shit: Again, you cannot even fathom how bettter a FOB works when supplies are categorized, and the garbage is thrown out of the cades. Make sure supplies are organized, and every front is supplied. On this, deliver stuff to whomever asks for it in the FOB, refill the extinguishers with the water tank you should have in your planetside req (The other should be in a front). But do move it to a front if it’s being heavily attacked, and return crates to the dropship. Without crates, the SDs stop, and thus, the whole operation.
      If you plan on being helping around, you might as well order yourself a supply encryption key.
    • Close the goddamn doors: Other, less civilized squads, leave the outer plasteel doors open, and next thing you know, there’s a runner slashing the doctor in medbay, or you just lost a whole cade line. Do yourselves a favor and close them. Inner cades should be open to facilitate transit, tho.
    • Ask the SL for supplies: The SL and the engies/miniengies are the ones that are going to communicate with req the most. After the first mat drop, tell your SL if you feel that you need something in the FOB (like flechette boxes that may not have been sent, or flares). They should make sure that req sends it down in the next drop
    • Drag wounded to safety: If you REALLY need a doctor, chances are you cannot walk. If a fellow marine cannot walk, help him out and drag him to the (hopfully built) medbay or the dropship. You would want them to drag you too. Asking a medic for a rollerbed is actually a pretty nice thing to do.
    • Man an M56d: Everyone can set and fold an M56d. Use it whenever you need it, and move it to a better position when forward cades have been built. Grab the screwdriver, the extra drum, and maybe the wrench and leave them next to the deployed M56d for anyone to fold if it needs moving. When the crate is empty, do everyone a favor. Crumble it and throw it out the cades.
    • Do guard duty: The old thankless job of staring at nothing for 2 hours. It may not be fun, but it needs to be done. Slap on a podcast, watch some cat memes, or whatever. Listen to your sick mixtape and comment it over comms. Grab a friend and chat around while you wait for relief. Bonus points if one guard in each flank has a flamer (they are pretty good for defending tight chokepoints). Best done in pairs, more is the dream.
      Side flanks are the highest priority for guard duty. Usually there is always someone in the main FOB. It’s the secondary fronts that need guarding the most.
    • Train a boot: some guys have just started and seemingly miraculously, have managed to deploy. You can train them (preferably if you also do guard duty with them for extra efficiency)
    • Simply chill and chat around: Not everything in FOB duty is frantic construction and shooting walls. Remember that bit about morale? Yea, a silent squad is a demoralized squad. Go see if anyone needs any help if you feel like it, or go talk with the guys doing guard duty. Maybe you just came from a patrol, and found some toys to play with. Play UNO. It will build up squad cohesiveness, and this stays for future rounds. It is priceless. Don’t be lazy, don’t be selfish, JUST. DO. IT.

    - Medic: Again, at least ONE medic should stay at all times at the fob, decide it in prep, and if that’s you, you got work to do:
    • Gather supplies shipside: Ask if a doctor is willing to do battlefield surgery, and join forces to bring medical supplies and food down. There are crates in the shooting ranges that you or the doctor can grab.
    • Set up shop: Why wait for an unga to build an ugly medbay? Build it yourself or tell them how you want it! This will set an example for the other medics, and will attract them towards your field medbay, reducing traffic from the common areas, allowing more compact and efficient FOBs.
    • Organize your shit: If you are busy because there are too many injured ungas, grab a PFC and make him organize medical supplies. Also, send him to loot permadead medics and minimedics. Every little bit counts.
    • Communicate with the SL: To get medical drops and scavenged medivends.

    - SG: There is a case for SGs leaving to the frontlines, and I am fairly partial towards that, but if you decide to stay, know this:
    • You are the core of a patrol/QRF: They should be organized around you, be it for scavenging or for xeno hunting, and you should lead those PFCs. If nothing else, because of your firepower, IFF capabilities, and runner killing potential.
    • Stay alive: In FOB defense, a good SG can turn the tide of the game. Don’t do crazy stuff, and if you unga to the frontline, make sure to get back with company, and in one piece.

    - Spec: Same as the SG, but with a couple of caveats:
    • Grab a Jtac: You are second in line, and if the SL dies, you have to lead the squad. If you are the unga type and you wanted to be a deltard, designate a substitute aSL that’s not rushing to the frontlines (Not the engies or the medics, those guys have their hands full), and give him the Jtac. Inform the SO about that if you want to be really nice about it, so he knows who to promote.
    • Make wire and build metal cades: Yes, not everything in a spec’s life is pwning xenos with your OP guns. You can help speed up FOB building by a lot. Just ask the engies where they want the metal cade lines.
    • If you think the SG is important...: You are the best weapon of the marines by far. I cannot stress enough how important specs are to FOB defense. STAY. THE FUCK. ALIVE.

    - Miniengie(Combat Technician kit PFC): My favourite. I’d pick miniengie over engie any day, and I feel that they are massively underappreciated. The kit adds a ton of utility and mats in exchange for 30 points and your two pockets(or one and a belt if you want to get a toolbelt). In my view they are an engineering force multiplier. They can take charge of a section or flank, and they save the real engies so much time and trouble it blows my mind. Even better, they don’t count for the engie limit, so your squad can be practically full of engies:
    • Almost an engie: Save for plasteel, cables, and some inconsequential stuff, you can build anything. Even better, you can repair pretty much anything, INCLUDING plasteel. Cable stuff repairs are still very limited tho. Do grab a crowbar from a lathe or planetside in case you need to decon reinforced walls/open unpowered doors.
      Miniengies should ideally be in charge of the side flanks, and design them somewhat to their liking. Call an engie or the SL to help you out fill up the gaps in your design with plasteel doors.
    • Order sandbags before deployment: having 50 sandbags instead of 15 does go a long way into securing a flank ASAP. Not all reqs send mats instantly, and few ROs will refuse if you explain politely why you ordered a sandcade crate. Hell, I even do it when I go deltard miniengie, and as an RO, I’d rather buy sandbags for a mini than snowflake ammo to a spec at round start(But I may be biased towards sandbags and minis).
    • Grab a guarding partner: That’s right, Miniengies, due to being able to repair anything, are the kings of guard duty. No need to call an engie to repair anything when there is a miniengie around.
    • Grab a supply encryption key: If you don’t grab a Jtac, you need a key. No doubts. Ask liberally for supplies for your flank and keep it well managed. In absence of an engie (most of the time), You are the SL of your flank. If your Jtac/SL can get coords near your front, for less travel time, all the better.
    • Organize your shit: It’s your flank, you keep it tidy. Boss around some bored PFCs (Let’s ignore the fact that you are a PFC as well). Make them deliver to you the supplies you need, and refill extinguishers.
    • What to keep in a front?: I like keeping an MD, a box of whatever ammo the guard duty guys are using, a flaregun with a bag of flares(and hopefully a box of labeled signal flares for CAS in shallow caves), a flashlight to keep behind your outmost cade, and about a stack of 25 (filled) sandcades, a welderpack, and at least 2 big extinguishers for repairs, per section of the front. A water tank is the dream. Add M56ds/sentries, a claymore box, and a bag of food, and you’re set. This allows you to withstand xeno pressure and wait for the unga wave to come defend your section.
    • Update the status of your flank: Command and your SL need to know how things are going, and the best way is to give updates, as shown in the evac section. (Remember how all of this is basically just an excuse to do proper evacs?)
    • C4: Keep one or two C4 bundles with you, whenever they are available. Miniengies can actually use C4, and it’s an easy way of destroying tunnels after the xenos retreat, or when it’s calm. (Tell your SL, and move in with a heavy escort just in case)
    • Move to help if you are needed elsewhere: In our ideal world, every flank has an engie and a miniengie, everyone stayed in the FOB and your req is pumping so many supplies that you don’t know what to do with them. In reality, half your squad has been wiped at caves, your engies are still figuring out how to put their shoes on, and your SL died a looooong time ago. You may very well be the one that saves this shitshow (with a little engie/SL bossing-around to do. Doesn’t even have to be of your squad!).
      If you are free, and someone needs help, help them. You can repair cades, the tank, and even APCs if they are unlocked. If you did your job, your buddy should have enough supplies and firepower to repel skirmishers until further help comes.

    - SL: (Do read the other jobs, you are the leader, and should know how to lead them)
    SLs make or break a FOB squad and sadly, very few are up to the task. Now, I’m not gonna tell you how to do your leadership job, because I myself can’t do it all that well, but a good chunk of the FOB SLs are wanna-be deltards that are just waiting for command to ask them to form a FT and get out of it. They make terrible FOB SLs, and someone else usually has to actually aSL for them, which defeats the whole purpose of being an SL, tbh. What I will do is point out what I sorely miss from most SLs and what I believe they should be:
    • The speech: It doesn’t have to be some Braveheart shit. Hell it doesn't even have to be a speech per se, but at least be communicative, sound confident, and let the men know that they can count on you, and that you plan on making a difference, and make things work for real this time. As a usual PFC, let me tell you, instant morale boost.
    • You are the boss: Seriously, half the marines that leave to die do so because they think they will die of boredom in the FOB. Prove them wrong and use their extensive list of jobs to boss them around. Keep them busy, keep them chatty, and you will keep them in the FOB. Gather non-builders as you land, and start ask for volunteers for the different tasks, and if they don’t volunteer, assign them one. Assigning marines in sight and in pairs tends to work a lot better than just asking for volunteers over comms. Also, letting them know that there are many tasks, all of them being just short of slave labor, may make them eager to volunteer for the less shitty ones. Idk. I’m not an SL.
    • Patrol the FOB from the inside: The SG/Spec/Random robusto can scout the outside, and you can keep a FT waiting(while working) to assist them. You on the other hand, are too valuable to get delimbed by a lucky runner and miss 20 minutes of FOB duty. You are to stay inside, help and check progress on all fronts. Keep command updated with the state of affairs.
    • On FOB duty QRFs: I deeply dislike how Command uses QRFs. Imo, They should be used preemptively, as a force to secure a retreat to the FOB. Instead, they are called as a last ditch attempt to hold an already, clearly lost position(Or they wouldn’t had been called), and all the bad SLs silently rush, anxious to shoot xenos now instead of waiting 5 minutes for the siege that’s coming, leaving the FOB leaderless when they most need it.
      Due to info delay and deliberation, 90% of the time QRFs are called in late, and they arrive even later, and when they finally do, they get steamrolled by the xenos, because at that point it’s an every-man-for-himself situation, and that’s a tragic hit in manpower and captures. On top of everything, Bravo(And I’ll talk about the squad I know), is VERY unrobust outside cades. It is what it is, we are mostly hobbits. They are rarely going to make a difference in any open field fight. Plus, the SG, medics, spec, and all the ungas are probably already in the front if not dead, so… Yea, not a fan of them.
    • Help and coordinate the builders: You can build metal and plasteel, and you can fix APCs if unlocked, (and not too sure about Tcoms), so all but in name, you are an engineer. (You do have one less level of engineering, but it’s nothing important)
      Also, in the engineer job, I wrote a little something about sorting out who gets what front… Yea, that’s probably not happening unless you make it happen. Do make it happen, please. It will make sure that you have a fully protected FOB.
    • What to do with non-fobbits: Be it random civilians, squad engies/medics, or shipside people, welcome them with open arms, they are your fobbits for now. Some may actually outrank you, but don’t let them fuck up what you worked so hard to build. Just… kindly point them at wherever needs more attention.
    • Organize resources on a big scale: That means ALL resources, not just supplies. In the end, you are responsible of the state of the FOB, and it’s performance (Remember that above all, a good evac means a successful FOB). If someone should read this guide, now that I think of it, it’s YOU.
      Keep supplies coming and keep them tidy, keep the cades manned and repaired, and keep your medics out of danger, boost morale, boss your PFCs around, hack time. Make <INSERT SQUAD> great again!
    • Secure the req connection no matter what: We talked like twice already about how supplies are what keeps the FOB moving. Your job as the leader of the FOB squad is to make sure that movement never stops, but sometimes the RO is deaf, or useless, or maybe a baldie shot him through the glass... But you’d be surprised how often the CTs actually pull their weight and run req in the face of incompetence. You can’t talk with the CTs in command comms, and important orders may go unheard in squad comms, so go ahead and order a supply encryption key before dropping.
      If ALL of req is bald, get the CO or the XO onto it. They should know how important req is and may go down themselves to run it, send a synth, or promote someone to CT. If they don’t, do propose these solutions to your problem. Still, even if they fix it, expect heavy delays till whomever gets there sorts all the shit out.
    • Communicate: SL’ing is half management and half respect, If you manage to get this thing even half rolling a couple of games, I guarantee you that your squad will respect you like no other SL. But for that, you need to communicate with everyone. Make yourself known for not being an unga.
      This is the key of being a good FOB duty SL. You are the link between Command, Req, your squad, and even other squads. Be chatty. Make sure every voice in your squad is heard, and their needs fulfilled. Inform them of how the battle is going, and what to expect. Welcome to The Sims CM edition!

    - Engineer: You are only second in importance to the SL, but you have more engineering skill, so you I’m putting you above him. Most of your job, I covered in the miniengie section, so go ahead and read that as well.
    • Early organization: As I said, Miniengies are a MASSIVE MASSIVE help for engineers. Ask around before deployment, and know who is a miniengie. You should each choose a section (Some fronts are too big to cover with only one engie), or mortar+Comms+helping-around-duty, and to avoid salt, and frustration, only one should have the final saying on how a front looks. We are all trying to have fun after all. If it’s full, and someone is very eager to try something new, let him, follow the next point, and see how it works.
    • Give and accept criticism: The fact that you are ‘the boss of the front’ doesn’t mean you can’t do things wrong. If someone has a pressing concern, they should let you know, and vice-versa. We all become better players faster if we support each other. Be open about changes in your design if they make a good point. If you are new-ish and/or unsure of something, please ask. It’s not an embarrassment, and it will save everyone a lot of salt. Hell, even a random PFC could very well be a good engie player, and teach you (It’s one of their jobs)
    • Get a PFC spotter: If you have the mortar, don’t pick your buddy engineer as a spotter. Chances are, when the siege comes, he’s gonna be needed to repair something. Everyone can spot. Don’t be irresponsible, and grab one of the bored PFCs before he fucks off to die alone in medbay. Teach him how to spot if he doesn’t know how, Save a life, train a baldie!

    Phew! And they say there is nothing to do in FOB duty...

    9. Key principles of engineering
    • What is the minimal FOB: The minimal FOB should grab at least one entrance of the dropship, and the dropship console. A lot of people forget about the dropship console. A queen that gets next to it (even diagonally, and/or with cades inbetween) can unlock the dropship’s doors, and next thing you know, you have crushers running up and down the Alamo, and little shits tackling and dragging people off. Does this sound like safe evac to you?
    • Where to build: Typically, you should try to build a front, or section of the FOB using the indestructable terrain to your advantage to funnel the xenos into bottlenecks. These bottlenecks take less resources to defend, and thus, will have more lines, which will buy you more time for your evac.
      There are some spots that lend themselves to M56d placing, since they pretty much make the operator immune to gas (MG next to a corner wall, and the operator diagonal to it, behind the wall). Try finding these spots, and design the cade lines around that as well.
      * Building with walls: Walls can be melted/crushed, and won’t hold out for long against smart xenos, plus it’s bad practice. Only allow walls in your build if you are REALLY desperate for mats/time. Otherwise, destroy them until you reach the indestructable, or really impractical to crush/melt terrain, and build from there.
      Also, Xenos like using nearby walls for cover. Destroy those as well. Having open firelanes exposes xenos to more damage
      * B-but there is no indestructable terrain!: Welcome to half of the LZs. That is the main reason of why they are inferior to the other half. You’ll have to suck it up and consider each cardinal direction a front. These FOBs tend to be small out of necessity. Welcome to your worst nightmare.
      * Taking the airforce into consideration: OBs, mortars and CAS cannot fire everywhere. Building up to a point that allows the no-man’s land, so to speak, to be bombarded, can help you push the xenos back. The more open, bombardable space the xenos have to traverse, the better. I like having at the very least least 2 cade lines behind that point, to be able to repel the enemies with at least those 2 cades worth of safety. Everything extra, either forwards or backwards is a cherry on top
      * Example, Solaris Ridge, LZ1: If you look at a map of SR, You can see there are 3 entrances to the LZ1 hangar: Main front (South), North Caves (North), and Tcoms (Southwest). The rest is impassable terrain. That makes it 3 fronts to hold. 2 of those are actually completely blocked by reinforced walls, and make good bottlenecks as well! But as I said above, the walls won’t last much, and you need properly manned cades to defend them. If you expand into either cave you won’t have air support. North caves doesn’t have a great CAS coverage, so I usually set up a strong pillbox inside the caves, and have a fallback doubled up compartment, outside the caves, from where to CAS the xenos if they breach the pillbox. By the time the pillbox has fallen, there should be a second line one to reinforce the last line.
    • Reinforce all the fronts: This is the most important thing I can teach you. I don’t care about anything else. If you are going to learn just one thing, let it be this:
      A FOB is as weak as its weakest front.
      If you build a massive FOB in main, and leave Tcoms with a line of metal cades and a sentry(remember how sentries alone are not good?), you don’t have a juggernaut of a FOB, you just have an UNMANNED, 1 cade deep shitFOB. Really bad xenos would still grind themselves against the main fob, but non-braindamaged ones, would just use a crusher or two to break in in about 5 seconds total, and swarm the LZ. If it’s manned, at least the marines in there can cry for help, and reinforcements might get there in time, but you still have a front with 1 metal cade line, which should had been a reason to call an emergency evac in the first place.
      * My tip for the time being: I consider a solid front one that has at least 2 double lines of sand/metal, and one extra sand, all compartimentalized, for a total of 3 cade lines. Less is risky, but manageable if compartimentalized, 1 double is a preparation call to command for evac in about 5 minutes unless something really changes, and 1 simple is an emergency one for departure ASAP if you can’t fix it in time.
      * Story time!: I have observed xenos go from 55 to 15 grinding the massive defenses in LV Nexus, when all they had to do was go around cargo and deal with the 1 liner FOB there, bypassing all the grind dangers (the sentries, the airstrikes, the specs, the HPRs…). By doing that, they would had cut off the marines from supplies and manpower with resin walls, and they would had easily won the day, but instead they lost like retards. I guess the teaching here is, don’t expect your enemy to be retarded, and build shit properly or something. Idk.
    • An unwatched cade is a dead cade: I believe this to be one of the main cause of FOB failures, with things like grenades and OBs trailing behind. If you don’t have the manpower to watch your cade lines, a newly-born young sentinel will sneak in and melt a whole section of your FOB, or a concentrated attack will punch through. Know your resources, and don’t build too much over your capacity. Instead, compartimentalize.
    • Compartments: Compartments can range from the minimum size (I wouldn’t recommend going under 3x3, or even 3x5), to screen-sized sections. They are material-intensive, and they can restrict movement, but it’s a great way of doubling up on your defenses.
      * Big sections: By building big compartments, you drastically increase the size of the FOB, and thus manpower and material need, and travel time, but you completely ignore the mobility issues, control more territory, and offer a bigger front, that, if manned, can pack some serious firepower. The sections allow for comfortable fallbacks to man, and create problematic angles for the boilers to attack, which delays them, and may force them into worse positions.
      * Pillboxes: On the contrary, small compartments don’t increase the size of the FOB too much, are moderately expensive in material need, and they heavily restrict mobility, increasing the effectiveness of gas attacks, but they don’t require any extra manpower, and probably their biggest selling point, they naturally create tight killzones when destroyed.
      Picture two parallel, long horizontal cade lines, divided in 5x4 compartments(with doors to access every compartment, obviously). If the xenos breach one of those cells, and pour in to go after the next cade line, they are going to take fire from the front, and the sides (That’s why it’s called a killzone). Not many xenos can resist that kind of punishment, so even tho they breached the line, they cannot push the next one safely without destroying the surrounding compartments. That is why compartments are useful. They delay the fall of lines, and give you time to evac.
      * Which one is better?: Both, really. People favor ones over the others. I myself like pillboxes more because manpower is not always a given, and it’s more times than not THE limiting factor. Plus, my doctrine favors them (They gain me more time to evac, and that’s the #1 priority), but I can definitively see the advantages of using big sections. It really depends on the specifics of that game. Ideally, I would want a 2-3 liner core with pillboxes, and if I need more, then the expansion should be done with big sections. But that’s just my personal opinon.
    • Cades: Cades are the only decent thing at stopping xenos outside fire. Use them well.
      * Cade distance: A marine shooting will have a chance of hitting cades 4 tiles away. If it shoots diagonally, it’s not even that. Ideally, marines should shoot from the cade, or one tile back if pressured. If you have a pillbox, even a tiny one, and you don’t man the outer line, you WILL hit it, and probably not the xeno you want to shoot. This is an issue since you will see baldies shredding your cades out of cowardice. But you’ll also see baldies shredding your cades with HEFA and other shit. It just happens, we have to live with it. Welcome to engineering.
      * Cade placement: This is a bit of a saltmine for me, but cades should face outwards. Cades facing inwards have an actually higher chance of blocking your bullets unless you stand next to them, which you do not want. Even worse is placing cades one against each other like this: ][. They block your bullets better, and when a xeno slashes them or a marine shoots them, they both take damage. Plus, it’s a waste of materials, so it’s just bad-bad-bad. Don’t ever do this.
      * Cade material: By the time you read this, this will have changed 10 times.
      1. Sandcades are king: they can be built and repaired by ANYONE (just add more sandcades to the barricade), are the cheapest mat in req (with 2 different crates bringing them, which stabilizes the prize), have a fairly high durability.
      2. Plasteel: The next best thing. Only engineers and the SL can build them (And a lot of shipside crew/survs, but I’m not gonna count those), and miniengies+ can repair them. They offer the best resistance, and they can open, which is always nice, but they are fairly expensive, and only SL+ can replace them.
      3. Metal: Plain bad. it dies fast, a railgun spit leaves it unrepairable, and it gets pretty expensive fast in req points. Good thing is that you usually get more than you realistically need, you can turn it into much needed wire, and you can salvage it from the surroundings. Plus, it makes a good second line for stopping breaches and gas blobs while you repair (Byond has a bad time dealing with diagonals, and some skilled boilers can lob gas in a way that goes over the cadeline, with pretty devastating effects. Having a double cade line makes it much harder for the boiler).
    • Accessibility: Having access to ACTUALLY get in and out of the cadelines without bumping each other is important. So is having designated areas to resupply, and so is having enough firelanes. The more you restrict certain traffic to certain areas, and the more effective firelanes you provide, the more efficient the defense will be.
      * Doors: Placing doors at the sides is ideal. They funnel traffic to the sides, and leave the center open for firepower. Furthermore, lining up the doors in the different lines will make traversing the FOB easier, and will reduce clutter. There is a great picture in the engineer wiki that explains it perfectly.
      If you have a Tank, make sure to leave a 3-wide door for it to exit without trashing your defenses. Remember that it destroys EVERYTHING in those 3 tiles, including outward-looking cades that may seem to escape it.
    Last edited by RNGPriest; 11-15-2019 at 05:31 PM.
    Vanessa 'Pocket' Miller

  2. #2
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    Whew, finally glad to see you finished up the guide Miller. It is indeed greatly helpful and I believe this shall come in handy for those new and those who need to freshen up on their FOB skills.

    I would say pay close attention to this guide folks. FOB duty may seem boring at times during the beginning, but it is the difference between a win or a lose of a round as RNGPriest has said.
    Executive Officer Madeline 'Compy' Czech is awarded the distinguished conduct medal: 'Acted with supreme confidence and efficiency in her duties as Commander, taking a personal hand in ensuring the operation flowed smoothly and with brutal precision.'.

    Squad Leader Madeline 'Compy' Czech is awarded the medal of valor: 'She may have arrived late to the combat, but she didn't arrive to late to change the tide of battle in our favor!'.

    That dumbass chick that gives zero fucks about anything.

  3. #3
    Senior Member ChengChan's Avatar
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    Guide is useful for new players of Colonial Marines and hopefully they're willing to read and follow this guide.
    Panzer Der Treiber: Gunter Von Saucken
    Community Mentor: 11/14/2019

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    Senior Member Avalanchee's Avatar
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    I don't think anyone will actually read the whole thing, it's well written but too long.

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    Thanks! It is pretty long, I agree, but I'm not great at summarizing points, and even tho I chewed things up a lot, newbies will probably feel daunted. As I said, it's not a guide per se, and more of a doctrine. Someone could work with this and produce a proper guide, which would be great. Hell, even if it helps someone it's worth it.
    If anything, prospective bravos probably have more patience than the average deltard, so there's some hope in that :P
    Vanessa 'Pocket' Miller

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    This might be a long guide, but as a newer engineer, it's definitely given me ideas that I'm putting into usage now. It's especially helpful, since I don't see many FOB guides here that are up to date. One thing I might want to suggest adding: reinforced handrails in the cade section. Especially useful on Prison, since you have a severe lack of access to sandbaggable terrain in a safe location. I tend to put them out just in front of the metal cades there. What is the ideal spacing between cade lines? One space, two?

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    This is great, I actually can't think of anything I'd add.

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    Junior Member Krosk's Avatar
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    Nice to see you finally make a fob guide this is gonna be nice to read over time.

  9. #9
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    Thanks again! Well, on the reinforced handrails (Build a handrail, add one metal, 3 metal total, and weld it, for those that don't know). I have to admit, I didn't add them because I don't have a formed opinion on them just yet. The times I built them, the spitters didn't actually target them, and the times I played xeno, I didn't face them at all.
    This is what I know for now: They act like a normal cade in terms of bullets, cost one less than a metal cade (but do use some fuel), they are more resistant, but not by much (20 machete slashes vs 16), can't be wired (and xenos can probably leap through them/climb them/runners can walk through them, although I'm not too sure on this), and the HUGE problem I see with them is that they actually cannot be repaired. I still have to see them in action to be sure, and they MAY work on prison. Still not too convinced on them.

    As I said at the beginning of the guide, do experiment and try things out, I try to explain my thought process on how I do things the way I do, but don't just take what I say as a universal truth. You may see usefulness in things I dont, and vice-versa, or even disagree with me. It's ok, innovation is never a bad thing, and I didn't even consider them for prison (Although to be fair, I kinda just gave up on FOBbing prison. I have my ideas on how to do that, but it's impractical and req expensive as hell).
    Normal handrails are garbage tho. They die in one slash or one spit, so don't use them as a defense (It's ok to use them in the planetside medbay/req).

    As for space between cade lines. if you do a one space, people won't man the forward cade, because a xeno can slash them from there, and they can't walk back. That being said, you can shoot through both without fear of hitting them, so it makes a good double line, that takes longer to breach and even if breached, can be repaired without a forced evac of the compartment. I like double doubles in the front (2 lines of doubled up cades, sand first, metal behind). More space means more options for marines to move, and thus, less bumping around (There's a point about this in one of the linked guides in the engineer page wiki). Also, more space means less impact on gas attacks, since a 3x3 compartment will get almost completely filled with gas, while a 5x5 won't, and have some space for marines to back off. The trade-off is more mats per pillbox (If you are going that route), more travel time between fronts/supplies/Dropships (And thus, more time to react to stuff for the unga wave), and typically, more manpower need, as the FOB grows bigger (although this will increase the potential firepower of a line, which is a good thing), and needs to be manned properly. It's a choice you have to make.

    Good luck with your engineering!
    Last edited by RNGPriest; 11-13-2019 at 04:16 PM. Reason: grammar
    Vanessa 'Pocket' Miller

  10. #10
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    Mar 2019
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    Another issue with manning one width barricade lines is that you constantly bump into people.

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