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C&C: Counterstrike - Playing Guide


MIGHT IS RIGHT
Stick to this principle and you canít go too far wrong in C&C: Counterstrike.
Our glorious victories across the Internet have taught us that the only language
any Red Alert opponent understands is overwhelming force. When battling on land,
sea or air, always use vast unit formations. While the computerís forces spread
their fire over loads of your units damaging them lightly, you can concentrate
massive power on one of their units annihilating it utterly, and then the next
and then the next. A tank rush of ten or more tanks is one of the most potent
forces in Red Alert (along with MiGs) and all you need are a couple of war
factories (to speed construction) and a good cash flow. Two refineries early on
are essential, moving up to three or four a bit later on when youíre secure. See
the ‘Building blocsí boxout. Whenever a mission allows you to build a base, this
plan should ensure ultimate victory.


BUILDING BLOCS
Notwithstanding local conditions and the intervention of hostile elements, the
following construction sequence will provide you with a magnificent base thatíll
make you the envy of all your neighbours. Build a barracks before a war factory,
because infantry are the most economical way of halting the initial computer
assaults before you can build a respectable number of tanks. If youíre playing
the allies, then a tech centre should come in at number eight to provide the
GPS. Use the service depot extensively, especially early on when you can ill-
afford to lose tanks. Group your tanks and, as the first group takes damage,
pull them back to the depot while the second group press home the attack. In
multi-player games a couple of extra construction yards are a major boost to
build times and air defences are vital. Clicking twice on, for example, the war
factory will make it the primary building and therefore the deployment point for
fresh forces.  

1 Ore Refinery (Construct power plants and silos as necessary.)
2 Ore Refinery
3 Barracks
4 War Factory
5 Service Depot
6 Ore Refinery
7 Radar Dome
8 Turrets/Teslas
9 War factory
10 Other buildings at your leisure


SOVIET MISSIONS

Proving Grounds
Youíve got a very big camp but no-one to man it. So flog the tech centre, SAM
sites and a power station. Start training grenadiers. Move your mess of troops
to the first flare in the north-east. Youíll hear Tanya utter a taunting “bye
bye”. Put the radar on global scan to find your new base. Your only hope is to
crush Tanya with an ore truck. Youíll probably lose two out of three refineries.
Head north to add a war factory to your property portfolio. Churn out tanks.
Keep forces in all your territories as youíll be assaulted from all angles. When
youíve got enough, drive a large tank party west to take out the alliesí base,
then head south down the peninsula to claim your construction yard. Build a few
subs then watch with amusement as they nuke destroyers out of the water.

Besieged
Forget the saboteur - heíll stay out of reach until the end. But as heís
systematically demolishing your base you must find new property urgently. First
build one ore truck to increase the cash flow then build four subs, two
transports, an engineer and plenty of tanks. Load the engineer and tanks onto
the transports and sail north with your sub escorts. Just crash straight past
the gun turrets, pausing only to take out the last destroyer by the naval yard.
Land your force and biff the defenders in the western base. Raze everything to
the ground while capturing the construction yard. Build a new refinery in the
north-west as your original is for the chop. The saboteur will end up in the
north-east corner. A couple more refineries; helicopters to take out turrets and
huge packs of tanks should do it.

Mousetrap
Put everyone in groups and formations. Your flame throwers are a menace to
society so put them in their own group. You canít capture the chronospheres yet.
Head north into the large chamber. Then, move west until you come across the
special chronosphere (youíll know it when you see it). Send in an engineer and
when he rematerialises go to the control panel beyond the power stations and hit
the controls. Handily, most of the chronospheres will explode, preventing
Stavrosí escape. Move everyone back to the large chamber and youíll find Stavros
to the east. Chase him east and north. Your troops will easily overcome all
resistance and your dogs can eat Greek.

Legacy of Tesla
Donít venture south of your base for now, your lovely tesla tanks will be hurt.
Instead, go west. Build three ore trucks then assemble a raiding party comprised
of three V2s, four heavy tanks, the teslas and an engineer. Use the V2s to
nobble the turrets from a safe distance then bulldoze the entire western base
except the naval and construction yard. Capture the construction site but donít
touch the naval yard otherwise youíll be nuked for your trouble. Construct a new
naval yard, then knock up four or five destroyers and a couple of transports
filled with tanks. The nuclear air base is on the second southern island. Once
itís retired, mopping up the outpost in the south-east is a relatively simple
matter.

Soviet Soldier Volkov & Chitzoi
Tips are not required for this mission. Failure is unthinkable. But just to be
sure, heed the following advice. Leave your armoured spearhead in place. Theyíll
massacre anything that looks at them. Concentrate on waltzing the peopleís
heroes - Volkov & Chitzoi - through a cast of allied stiffs. Once theyíve wasted
everything in reach, send in the tanks to mop up the rest.

Top Oí The World
Group your units into their respective troop types. The timer is a red herring
as this is a very quick mission. Whenever you engage hostile forces, stop and
set up a three-way crossfire with your formations. Remember that mammoths
regenerate, so use them as shields to absorb damage for the rest. Withdraw
whenever they need to recover. Once you cross the ford youíll enter a valley
studded with hill-side turrets. Use the V2s to pick them off from a safe
distance. There are three on the way up and two more on the way down. If it all
goes horribly wrong on the way south, then make a dash for it with the truck.
The base is close by and youíll probably make it.

Paradox Equation
Several bizarre phenomena are at work in this mission, such as heavy tanks
firing electricity and allied tanks hitting with mammoth power. Initially,
though, youíll need infantry to stem rocket troop attacks. Enemy tanks hold the
ore field just north of the trees. Build a couple of tanks to take them out as
your ore trucks need fresh supplies. Six heavy teslas should be enough to roll
over the western base before you turn to the north. Prepare an engineer to
capture the naval yard. Three transports full of tanks will enable you to
overcome the island defences but donít destroy the chronosphere. Drive a tank
through the chain fence by positioning the ‘moveí cursor along one length of the
compound, then take it with two engineers.

Nuclear Escalation
Do not deploy the MCV immediately. Head east and park it on the road along the
more defensible valley nearby. Building your base between these two ore fields
you shouldnít want for cash, but there is more to be liberated from a church to
the south-west. Plonk a couple of teslas at the northern approach to your base
to seal off the top entrance to the eastern ore field. Ignore the western
outpost for now, concentrate on sorting out the nuclear attacks from the north.
Take the base from the western flank, using V2s on high ground to pick off the
turrets (groups of three will destroy a turret with one volley). Move in your
tanks. The tech centre is in the north-east corner, but youíll have to level
everything to win.


AllIED MISSIONS

Sarin Gas 1: Crackdown
Donít worry about the radar centre. Use mine-layers to seal off the approach to
your base and the roads north and south of it. Keep them mined and the convoy
trucks are doomed. Keep a few light tanks on the road to be sure. When you
assault the main base, nobbling the teslas is critical. Strike in the south-east
corner and level everything you find. Move north to the next base section and
head for the east of the map. The wall is guarded by a V2 but out of tesla
range. Breach the wall and atomise all power stations. With the teslas off-line
send in your main force to destroy them and then vandalise the rest of the base.

Sarin Gas 2: Down Under
Group your troops. Use the spy to press the control panel to blow a flame turret
then move north with the spy and hit the next panel. Head south with the spy to
infiltrate the war factory. Your agent trucks it off-screen and then reappears
in the east. Disembark immediately and set off the nearby panel. Leave him to
await further instructions. Move the infantry east killing dogs and catching
grenadiers with exploding barrels. Four dogs must be put down before the spy can
proceed. Send him north to hit the next panel. Presently, youíll discover two
teslas going mental. Tiptoe the spy past to the panel. When the mammoth turns up
let it have three shots on the tesla then activate the panel. The mammoth and
teslas will destroy each other. Send Mr Bond south to the next panel. The two
teslas will fry everything but your side. Curious. The spy can then continue
south to release our Tanya. Run amok with her, taking the first turn east and
then heading north to the two flame turrets.
Send the spy past the turrets and behind the wheel of the mammoth. Stand well
back. Itíll bulldoze its way out and any survivors can follow.

Sarin Gas 3: Controlled Burn
Scout out the lie of the land with the spy. Bundle your rocket troops into the
APC, avoid the patrolling mammoth and crash straight into the eastern base. Keep
going into the corner. Disembark, then use the APC to splat as many infantry as
possible. Blow the barrels and cripple as many power stations as you can. The
two light tanks can then destroy all four teslas from their valley. Deploy the
MCV by the flare. The rest of the enemy are lurking in the south-west. Build
about six artillery pieces to accompany your tank force. Station the artillery
on the high ground overlooking the base in the south-west. Tanks will need to
nail the mammoth first, though. Then your artillery can pound power stations.
Charge the tanks in, smack the teslas and prepare engineers to take the labs.

Fall Of Greece 1: Personal War
Youíll need to act fast in this mission as the enemy are in hot pursuit. Head
north but avoid the mammoth. Follow the civvy west around it. As you approach
the base all hell breaks loose. Grab the health crate if you need it but
otherwise run away before the base is nuked. Reinforcements will arrive and
should be enough to see off your pursuers and the two mammoths. Keep moving
south-west crushing the snipers in the trees. At the ford, leave the Paras to
their tesla fate while Tanya nips round the back to demolish the power plant.
Sending your surviving tanks back to the start of the map should draw off any
enemy tanks that are being particularly irritating. Head north to the bridge and
shoot the barrels, taking out the advancing mammoths. Then itís south-west a bit
before moving north to the base. Use Tanya to destroy the barrels to disable the
tesla while your reinforcements can crush all remaining resistance. Then skip
Stavros to safety.

Fall Of Greece 2: Evacuation
Use a ranger or light tank to scout out the location of the villages. One lies
in the south, another in the east, another to the south-west and the fourth in
the west just below the bridge. Thereís no need to assault his base - just use a
massive tank force to hold the centre. As long as you do, itís a simple matter
of running sample villagers to the safety of your base. The island is in the
north-east, but thereís only one beach on the mainland - in the south-east just
above the alliesí base. Build a fleet of four or five destroyers, send them out
hunting subs and then bombard the enemy base from off the coast. Your tanks
should hold the landing site while you have your civvies board a transport. They
are colour coded by village. However, make sure you back them up with a
transport full of tanks as when you land on the island a team of Paras provides
one last surprise. Ooops.

Siberian Conflict 1: Fresh Tracks
The first 20 minutes is crucial. After that, convoys come thick and fast, and
youíll only have time to react to new threats. Build one new ore truck, a mine-
layer and tanks. Stop the convoys by cutting the bridges and mining the key
roads. Send a scout round and pick off patrols with the helicopter and tanks.
Take out the bridge in the north-west then start mining. Mine the road to the
south-east of your base. The first convoy arrives here. Drop mines all around
the road entering your base in the south-west corner - mammoths and the sixth
convoy enter here. At some point you need to destroy the bridges in the north-
east and the south-east. This leaves a single route east. Mine it like youíve
never mined a road before. The road in the north-east, near the enemy base, is
the arrival point of the 7th convoy. Mine it or organise a light tank welcoming
committee. Watch out for the crates the trucks drop. Theyíre not power-ups, they
are nukes.

Siberian Conflict 2: Trapped
Once your base is under way destroy the two bridges to the east. Turret and mine
the remaining entrances. There are two enemy bases: one, huge, tesla-riddled
mother in the middle and a minor outpost in the east. Send a force to pick on
the little one, then concentrate on starving out the nasty base. Leave some
tanks in the east to wreck the bridge, then mine the road and await the third
convoy. The first convoy will head for the heart of your base. So itís dead
then. The second truck takes the road running south to north. Place a few mines
on this stretch and thatís the end of that. Eliminate the enemy ore trucks in
the north then battle it out for the ore field in the central west region. Once
youíve destroyed the ore trucks move in and ruin his base. The power stations
are in the south and vulnerable to coastal bombardment.

Siberian Conflict 3: Wasteland
Nothing fancy, just wipe the Soviets from the face of the map. So follow the
standard building plan, bully ore trucks and amass an obscenely large tank force
to rush the base. Ore litters the map, particularly to the south and east. The
main base is in the centre and thereís a minor outpost to the south-west. Extra
dosh is up for grabs in the eastern oil field. Victory is assured.


The ‘It Came From Red Alertí Campaign
As youíll have gleaned from last monthís review, Counterstrike enables you to
access the not-so-secret Red Alert ant missions. So press down the left shift
key, click on the round speaker in the top-right of the menu screen and prepare
to do battle with B-movie bugs that eat tanks.

Ant Mission 1
Scoot your forces north, take the second road east and prepare for creepy-crawly
combat. Repair essential systems only (i.e. leave the radar and ore bin to rot).
Your most convenient ore field is located just south of the base but thereís
more to the west and north-west. Build two ore trucks as soon as you can.
Implement the following bug slugging techniques: scatter your infantry units
(‘xí key) and put them on guard (‘gí key) at all times. Build two mine-layers
and seal off all but one of the approaches to your base. Construct Rangers and
order them to escort your ore trucks - big ants eat them for breakfast. Youíll
have to drop mines like confetti to hold out for the full 30 minutes. At the end
ensure that you have a contingent of troops to protect the radar dome. If youíre
feeling flash, sell your ore refinery at the end to prepare yourself for Mission
2.

Ant Mission 2
Deploy the MCV to the far north-east of your base by the river in the small
space amongst the ore there. Build an ore refinery right next to it to keep the
distance your trucks have to travel to a minimum. Forget the bridges for now,
grab the civvies. Build an APC and sneak it past the ants in the eastern
village. Unfeasibly large ants are a bit thick, so you can distract any on guard
with a sacrificial ranger. Fulfil your mission obligations by loading up a
single villager, then rendezvous with the amphibious transport in the north-
west. In the south-east corner, if you can give the ants the slip, an
entrepreneurial ranger can find money crates. Build loads of tanks. The second
village is in the north as are all the bridges. Despatch your armoured division
to take on ants while your APC charges up the east side of the map into the
village via the ford. Have a couple of tanks drill ants while the rest demolish
the bridges.

Ant Mission 3
Trundle the MCV west slightly and deploy it by the ore field. Thereís an antís
nest and lucrative ore deposits just to the north. Ring the nest with troops and
put them on guard. If a giant ant peeps his head out, theyíll blow it off. When
the bug boffins turn up, gas the nest then keep them snug in the APCs. Build a
tank posse. South-west of your base are twin fords and beyond these another
nest. Send in a couple of tanks to keep the ants busy and run a boffin past the
chaos and into the nest there. This should keep your base safe for the rest of
the game. Now, your aim is to push north, going round the map anti-clockwise.
There are seven nests. Build loads of tanks, attack them in force, and run an
engineer in when you get the chance. The toughest one is in the far corner and
you may sacrifice a couple of people to get to it.

Ant Mission 4
Donít move. Form all your men into groups and formations (‘fí key). The keys to
this mission are barrel ambushes and carefully prepared crossfires. Set up your
groups where they can all fire at once, then use one poor stooge as bait to
sucker ants, one at a time, into your kill zone. Never take red ants head on.
Approach them at an angle. If you shoot first, they often retreat. The light
switches are in the second corridor south, off the first major room. North of
this hanger is a room crawling with monster ants and cocoons. One man can take
them all. Let the patrolling ant pass, then, heading north, dodge the drones and
blow the barrels. Theyíll all be gassed saving you a lot of bother. Now a
mammoth tank will turn up to general applause. The mammoth can regenerate up to
50% of damage so let it take the brunt of the action. In the final chamber, the
Queen ant (who also regenerates) awaits your pleasure. Youíll need the mammoth
intact along with some mates to kill her. End campaign.

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