Cannon Fodder Revisited – Part 2

August 10, 2012

The introduction is here. Part 1 is here.

So where were we?

Ah, yes. Off to the land of the ice and the snow from the midnight sun where the hot springs flow. Once more our mission is KILL ALL THE THINGS! And BLOW UP ALL THE OTHER THINGS! So with our mittens in our pockets, we bundle into the chopper and head for colder climes.

Friends are waiting immediately. In blue. On a white background. I CAN SEE YOU! TIME TO DIE! Amusingly they stand there, firing at me, their shots falling ludicrously short. I chortle a little. If I recall you can fall off the cliffs. It’s a quick way to get down, but I’m going to go the long way, lest it incapacitates me for any amount of time, giving the Blue Man Group a chance to shoot my spleen off. Once more we seem to have a GARDEN SHED OF CERTAIN REGENERATING DEATH! Only this time no obvious means of blowing it up. I believe FLYING PINEAPPLES OF LETHALITY, AKA grenades, will be found somewhere on this level. Either that or a nice big hammer.

Things turn ugly quickly. As we run along, slipping on the ice (seriously, you fall over), blue bastards pile in from all sides. We’re trying to get to a stash of grenades. You can see the tip of the shed to the right. The problem? Blue Man Group is pouring out of said shed. If I shoot them I stand a very real chance of blowing up my grenades. Worse, blowing myself up in the process. Oh the humanity!

We dash for the shed. A soldier runs out. We somehow lure him away and shoot him and grab the grenades. Two more soldiers appear. We fire…

NO! The grenade pile blows up. It takes the shed out, but poor Sergeant Jools is caught in the ensuing explosion! Bugger! A brief second to mourn is granted, then we must carry on with the mission. We run down to the south east corner to another shed. On the way another grenade is accidentally thrown. We have three left, with three sheds left to blow. Dodgy! Fortunately when we reach the southeast shed, there’s another handy box of exploding pineapples. The shed and the soldiers it dispensed are swiftly destroyed. Another brief second is spent mourning Sergeant Jools as we return past the scene of his tragic demise. This is no longer just a mission. This isn’t about justice. This is punishment.

A tidal wave of blue pours toward us as we rain hot lead upon them. Sergeant Jools will not have died in vain! We push on, more and more members of Blue Man Group trying to kill us, but we are victorious. As the last shed explodes in fire we run away quickly to avoid the falling roof. The mission is complete. We dance jubilantly in the snow.

And now, a moment of silence for our fallen hero. May he rest in peace.

The first gravestone appears on the hill as more conscripts arrive to join the line. Sergeant Jools took 17 enemies straight to Hell with him.

Staff Sergeant Jops, Sergeant Stoo, and Corporals RJ and Ubik toast their fallen friend before heading off for another mission.

From the snowy lands back to Vietnam. This phase is called Beachy Head, and it’s one of FOUR! YIKES! It’s BLOW UP ALL THE THINGS rather than KILL this time. The game informs me I have 55 recruits left. Hopefully that will be enough. Once more into the jungle my friends…

We start in the middle of the map, and look, a river… With no bridge. Oh dear. I figure for a strategy we’ll head east and around the little river inlet, work our way around, then cross the river at the top. This is going to be a tense one! We soon discover that a new terrain feature has been added. Swamp. It does exactly what you think it does. Slows you down badly. Through the forest we can see our enemy staring at us. Apparently the forests are immune to bullets, though we give it our best shot. We get to the first shed in the southeast corner and find a handy box of grenades. You’d think the enemy wouldn’t leave this just casually laying around. Their stupidity is our gain, however. Scratch one shed! No casualties so far. On our side at least.

Shed two is down. This time with a flying door. The tactic is to lob the grenade and RUN AWAY VERY FAST. The door goes whizzing past us but fails to hit any of us. What an ignominious fate, being killed by a flying door!

Now we have to cross the river. From the look of the map, and it’s such a blob it’s hard to tell, I think the shed is bottom left. However I am sticking to my plan of crossing to the north. I could break the squad into two but for the sake of speed I won’t, and just hope nothing is waiting to say hello with a high velocity piece of lead.

A bit of a panic ensues when, as we enter the water, we see an enemy swimming toward the other shore. This would mean he’d get there first, and have plenty of time to gun us all down in the water. A hasty retreat back to shore sees us there to greet him with the greeting he planned for us. Let’s try this again. We swim out. As we get just half way, an enemy comes running at us. Oh crap! The range is closing and it’s looking bad. Sergeant Jops leaps into action and fires as he emerges dripping wet from the water, saving the rest of the platoon from a lead filled watery doom. As we regroup on the shore, a soldier near a clump trees is halfheartedly firing at us. A grenade is thrown in his direction. He is soon dispatched.

Another conveniently placed batch of grenades are acquired and another shed joins the great garden center in the sky. I had somehow missed this one on the map. I thought three was a bit of an odd number. (Oh dear…) One shed to go, when suddenly an enemy appears out of seemingly thin air and starts blasting. Only quick reactions save the squad.

With soldiers closing in, a final grenade is lobbed at the remaining shed and VOILA! This phase is complete. The remaining enemy soldiers somehow lose the ability to use guns at this point, despite the fact we’re distracted, jumping up and down and clearly not paying attention. The phase two briefing, Pier Pressure: Kill everything that moves. Blow up everything that doesn’t. Righty ho then.

CRAP ON A CRACKER! The phase starts with multiple soldiers heading toward you. (The screenshot is from a few seconds in with a few dead as I was too busy trying not to die to hit the screen capture button.) The forces are wiped out and more start pouring over the water as we run east. I click to go on the pier but, the path finding being what it is, my squad run into the water… I click to get them out and then I run down the right pier, picking off enemy in the water as I go. “Surely it can’t be this simple, can it?” I think. I shoot the enemy soldiers heading for me, safe in the knowledge they can’t actually hurt me, and I hurl a grenade at the shed.

That went badly wrong. The shed exploded, sending debris flying over to the pier, which blew up, taking my entire squad with it. Bugger, bugger and thrice bugger. This is where we reach the dilemma. In an ideal world I’d play as the game was designed two decades ago. However the point of this is to get to the end and write as I play. Re-doing everything above seems sort of redundant as I’ve already written about it, so I will load the most recent save state and play to this point.

Only this time I won’t blow the pier up with my squad standing on it…

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