How to prioritize early game purchases?

I know later in the game it can feel like there’s too many resources, but in the early game lately I’ve been thinking about what is the “best” way to spend resources. A few options (not complete, you may feel free to add) are

  1. purchase food facilities. This is a long term investment but any resource minded player will see this as investing workers in any other economic game. Food can be traded to havens for tech/production

  2. purchase training facilities. These almost speak for themselves but the idea is you can gain a lot of experience for your troops, especially ones that aren’t on your main squad

  3. save up for another manticore. The squad limit is 8 but you only start with 1 manticore that can store 6 soldiers. Ergo getting another manticore equates to a squad size upgrade, and we know how important those are. Yes I will concede that going from 4 to 6 soldiers isn’t as “impactful” as going from 6 to 8 soldiers, but a squad size upgrade is a squad size upgrade and some missions could use the extra firepower.

  4. start refitting your troops with preferred equipment. I like to refit the heavy with banshee gear and I like to put heavy canons on everyone. This is an intensive resource/time dump and also the hellfire ammunition is the most expensive to refill.

Which do you think makes the most sense? I think you could definitely juggle a few of these at a time for example you could refit some equipment while also making a training facility, but how would you rank the priority of the above? In particular I’m really interested in getting another manticore or not; it’s expensive and it’s also expensive to hire more troops so that doens’t seem like something you can do while also doing everything else at the same time.

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In the beginning you don’t need a second team that much since there is only a mist zone next to your base. I keep some space for 4 training facilities (that will be the only place where I will build those) but don’t build them yet.
I focus on finding a second Phoenix base and build food facilities with the resources I have.

Then I’d start putting resources in training facilities (not 4 at once) and recruiting.
There I would spare some resources and steal a ship from an other faction. This ship will be used to get recruits and trade (or an intervention nearby with hopefully well trained recruits).

If you steal yet an other ship you can use it for scans.

Does stealing a ship cause you to go to war with that faction? (or how much of a rep loss is it if it doesn’t make you go to war?)

I’d like to get alignment with all factions to pick up some free researches if possible before raiding/stealing from them.

A ship, initial ship, cost less than 2 recruits.

Don’t remember exactly.
You lose a lot with haven leader (50 or something).
But with faction it’s less, like 20 or so, so no war straight away, you can make relations better afterwards.
Bonus … you get positive relations with the 2 other factions (10 I think).

I only play legendary difficulty so my strat may not working for you, but I will just share my strat and see you can get anything out of it. At start with 2 workshop and I just worry about the first 6 soldier and their equipments. I only use assault rifle And grenade with assault, and two snipers. It will handle anything really. The I’ll just go tech rush from factions and save up for second ship so I can get the second base as soon as possible. My research usually are to rush to shotgun for aasult, with dash and shotgun assault are amazing, then I go for new jaricos sniper for highest damage. I don’t think you need to spend a lot of resources at start as default equipment is quiet good. I never go for food production as resources was never an issue for me as i have only one set of equipments for two team.

Thanks for your input so far everyone and I look forward to hearing more.

@pandolin that does seem very economical to steal at least one ship considering it takes like 10 days and 1000 production points for a ship to build it from scratch.

@mirage Interesting that’s how xwynns plays his legend run too with no food facilities. However, I prefer to have some passive income as I have found my resources to be lacking at times. It takes quite a wad of cash to outfit 3 phoenix bases, and 1 set of optimal gear for a team of 8, and a couple air units. That being said, I do realize that food facilities take a LONGGGGGGGGG time to see a return on investment. 8 food a day at a conversion rate of 5 food : 4 construction takes close to 40 days just to recoup the cost on the production cost, not even considering the tech cost of a food facility.

when you say 2 workshop do you mean buy a research lab or manufacturing plant? I can’t tell both seem to be useful.

edit: I’m currently of the mind you should replace the heavy’s equipment ASAP before anything else. He’s just a liability with his slow movement speed and inaccurate shooting, so equipping him “properly” feels as though you’re adding a useful squad member to your team.

I mean two manufacturering facility and heavy are not liability but a main source of damage close range, you can utilize his jump and bash ability. When he finish of one enemy and he is close to another enemy to use his canon on next turn. Heavy is very OP early game as he one shoot enemies b4 you get your shoot gun, and you can daze choris and siren. And I do use a lot of medkit as my heavy do take damage, but he’s tough when he needs to be. Heavy armour is really good only early game as you won’t have take much damage on later games.

buy mor dakka

Oh I miscommunicated; I do like the heavy’s hell canon very much, what I meant was replacing his armor pieces. That bash strategy sounds interesting…is bashing all that effective?

I have heard that jump pack into war cry is a decent crowd control option (although surpassed by alpha striking).

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Bash damage is based on weapon weight, with hell canon and the 50% bash and melee damage skill you can do 100+ damage and chance to daze enemy. It’s op in early game. Especially when you get living armor.

On Hard and Legendary difficulties I find what works well is to simply build a food chamber and 2nd research lab in my initial base and then leave it at that, instead focus my time on exploring nodes and expanding my navigation path so I have known routes around the globe to wherever I may need to go.

Given the sheer number of Havens you’ll discover and that food is largely only consumed by recruiting more units, I stick to my original 4 soldiers for quite some time building a large surplus of food and trading it in across multiple havens for tech and materials.

Once I discover a 2nd base, I make any repairs or constructions needed to have the base have a med bay, living quarters, food production and a 2nd radar station so I can start doing multiple scans in different locations to speed up discovering navigation paths. Around this time I also start to recruit new soldiers to fill my roster up to around 5 or 6 recruits I can use in missions, making sure I am still keeping a positive food income so I am building a surplus I can trade in whenever I need to queue up a lot of equipment in a short space of time. (This normally happens after I’ve unlocked a factions research and can suddenly overhaul my teams equipment)

So far I’ve been siding with Anu across all my campaigns so once I have unlocked their research I use the empty slots in my original base for constructing multiple Mutagen labs as they only produce 2 Mutagen each tick and most mutations require hundreds of Mutagen per mutation.

Once I have a 3rd (And usually followed immediately by a 4th and 5th) base thanks to my established node network, I up the number of food, Mutagen, fabrication, radar and hangars so that I have at least:

10-14 Mutagen income per tick.
4 Area scans available.
2 if not 3 fabrication workshops.
Minimum of 2 hangar bays.

Any slots left over I invest in a additional research lab, and making sure I have at least one base at certain intervals that can heal and recover stamina of my soldiers… where those bases are situated really depends on my node navigation paths and where my original base was located.

By this point the index is typically around 15-20%, I have 3-5 bases, I am able to conduct area scans across entire continents at the same time to finish off my node discovery and have a surplus of food in the thousands of units. I then spend a few days travelling to different havens trading all my food in for lots of tech and materials (If I didn’t need to already for getting my bases equipped as I wanted).

Only then do I start to fluff up my roster with additional soldiers that I won’t immediately be needing but will help expand my available deployment options later on. Personally I refuse to exploit what are obvious bugs, so I only build a single training centre in a couple of bases and situate inactive units there to gain experience over time.

As I have a good number of bases at this point, I try to keep my inactive roster quite sizeable but not too large that I go into a food income deficit, as food works far too well as a strong currency for getting tech and materials.

When do mutagen/mutations labs become available?

I have always got access to them immediately after building a strong relationship with Anu and getting access to their technology. Not sure how long it takes them to research it beforehand (or if they already start with the technology), as by the time I get to a high enough standing with them, they already have at the very least the basic mutation tiers researched followed soon later by the 2nd tiers of mutations.

This is first research they do. So probably at the time when you will get good relations with them they will already have it.

You can only increase that with next bases. You can’t build them, aren’t you?

Never checked, though yes I do that with additional bases which is why it’s part of the 3rd base milestone.

The reason I mention it as a construction task is because most bases I have gained have their hangar bay damaged and needing repair. But rather than waste resources repairing them just for the sake of it, I only repair what I will actually need to hit my milestone goals.

If a base is just going to house a extra radar station and some mutagen labs, I just leave the hangar and certain other buildings broken… this may later come back and bite me on the ass for some reason I haven’t encountered yet, but so far it has saved quite a few materials in repair costs.

Oh I also forgot, I make sure to scrap equipment I know I definitely won’t be using.

Whilst the materials and tech gained per item is marginal, when you’re scrapping large stacks of weapons, armour or ammo you’ve built up over time it can give a return of many hundreds of units of resources depending on how frequently you do a inventory clean up.

I personally tend to scrap items I have already researched and can manufacture if I don’t already have a soldier with plans for that equipment, I then manufacture equipment on a ‘as needed’ philosophy once I have a soldier that I am certain will use it.

It helps keep resources available for the general maintenance tasks and I can just trade in food when I am preparing production jobs for new soldiers.

Are mutations good/anyone got a list of them?