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From the beginning, you’re outgunned, outtonned, and outnumbered. How do you pump those numbers up and get a fighting chance?
Also check: Phantom Brigade General FAQ
Phantom Brigade Building Power
First: there is no lose condition in Phantom Brigade. You can take as much time as you want and you will not lose any progress unless your units get destroyed in battle. Even if you lose all your pilots, units, and supplies, resupplying at a friendly base will give you two machines and two pilots for free.
Second: enemy power levels only increase when you liberate a province. They do not scale up when you upgrade your equipment. Thus, it is entirely possible to level up way past enemy levels and stomp them into the dust.
But that won’t be for some time yet. When you’re starting out, you’re very vulnerable and probably still inexperienced with combat. So don’t rush into liberating an enemy province. Hit some convoys and patrols, skip town to the next province over, and always remember you can retreat at any time for no cost whatsoever.
Retreat When You Need To
I have to reiterate this. Back away from fights you can’t win. Hit that “run away” button and get out of there. Your equipment and pilots are valuable, so don’t throw them away.
You can only retreat while in a hostile-held province.
If the retreat button isn’t available, try switching quickly between travel modes (overdrive, cruise, stealth). That usually fixes the issue for me.
Player 4 Has Joined The Game
Arguably the most important upgrade you can get is the one that unlocks the fourth unit slot in your base. This lets you deploy four machines to each battle, drastically increasing your firepower, survivability, and tactical options. Save up for it and get it.
The next one after that, however, is quite bad, since the maximum number of units you can deploy is 4. and that upgrade carries with it a significant penalty to movement speed. I find that mobility is far more important than having backup machines.
The next most important upgrades you can get are overdrive and stealth. Overdrive is more useful because it reduces travel time, but both combined can let you finally get the drop on those cowardly convoys, or creep up to a base without alerting it and drawing in waves of reinforcements.
… And Violence of Action
With these tools in hand, go break some machines. The only way for you to get more resources is to win combat, so go out and win some.
This is probably the most important concept. Equipment and resources are tough to come by. You can’t rely on replacing losses with salvage– it’s unsustainable. So avoiding loss in the first place is your best way to accumulate power.
The most immediate effect of getting better equipment is better stats. More damage, more integrity, better range, fancier guns, you name it. Better equipment lets you fine-tune your playstyle or optimize for it. Even if you just want to do more of what you’re doing, having better gear never hurts.
The other bonus of getting better gear is that your units’ levels go up.
Level is determined by the average of all equipped parts, rounded off somewhat inconsistently. For example, a unit with level 10 weapons and arms and level 9 body and legs will have an average closer to 10, and so its level will be calculated as 10. If you have a 50-50 split, it’s inconsistent, likely due to floating point shenanigans.
Leveling up has two main benefits. First, it lets you build better equipment. Your workshop’s crafting level is the average level of your units plus 1, but once you reach a certain level, it never drops back down. Yes, the tooltip in the workshop menu is lying to you. Liberating provinces does nothing for workshop level.
Second, a higher-level unit gets hidden buffs to damage and resistance against a lower-level unit. Once the level difference gets high enough, you start to utterly destroy your enemies while taking little to no damage in return even while standing still in the open.
Higher level enemies also get these buffs, so don’t get overconfident.
Enemies only scale with their province difficulty. They do not scale with your own equipment level. This means that you will never become relatively weaker by improving your equipment. Upgrade away!
Finally, unlock blueprints to open up more options in the workshop. The most important effect of this is that you can build rare weapons and parts that you want, rolling for good perks so that you can optimize your builds.