Homeworld – Hints and Tips
Homeworld is a winner. Dozens of games have tried to evoke a feeling of grand space combat, but none have come close to what this game has accomplished. All of those battle scenes from Star Wars, Star Trek, and The Last Starfighter are back, and not in pog form. Admittedly, managing the while shebang can be tough, and while the tutorial helps you grasp the basics of the interface, home is still very out of reach. Luckily, you’re holding this article in your hands, and it just happens to walk you home, just in case you’re having trouble. After all, the ruby slippers that generate a hyperspace field haven’t been invented yet.
There’s really no point in rewriting the walkthrough the game includes for this mission. Just follow the directions and it will go smoothly. Take this time to enjoy the scenery and get comfortable with the controls. In this, and almost every other, mission you’ll want to collect every available Resource Unit (Fleet Control will let you know you’re finished by saying “available resources consumed”) and research everything that is available at the end of a mission.
Outskirts of the Kharak System
You’ve come to find the Kar-Salim but something has gone wrong. Send out your Resource Collector to pick up all of the closer asteroids while you conduct research on the Corvette Chassis and Heavy Corvette Upgrade technologies.
When you have the resources, build ten Interceptors and place them in two squadrons of five, and build four Heavy Corvettes in squads of two. Once you have this skeleton crew in place, send out your probe and get ready for a visit that will make you long for the in-laws.
Your Crovettes should rip the first invasion force to shreds while your Interceptors mop up isolated ships. Casualties are to be avoided — start over if you lose any ships. After the fight, build a Salvage Corvette and send it to the derelict with your Heavy Corvettes as an escort. While you’re waiting, build seven more Salvage Corvettes.
Return to Kharak
Send your Scouts, using evasive tactics and flying in a delta formation, to attack the enemy vessels. While they occupy the behemoths send your complement of Salvage Corvettes out to capture them all. The ships don’t even have to be damaged. Enjoy the three Frigates you just jacked. Build a Resource Controller and enter hyperspace. One thing to watch out for: make sure that all of the ships you capture come out of the ship before you take off into hyperspace. You lose captured ships if you hyperspace while they are within.
Build ten Interceptors. Put your four Heavy Corvettes on escort duty with the Resource Collector and send them on a dream date to that big resource pocket the computer points out. To make life easier when it comes to placing controllers in the right place, just have them escort (guard) the collector, and they will just follow it around, letting it dock when necessary.
After a few minutes, the Bentusi Mothership will appear, and you might think you’re under attack, but it’s worse: they want to sell you something. Buy nothing; you can use your resource units for more important things. Don’t worry—you’ll be able to research Ion Cannons for yourself in just a couple of missions.
When the enemy appears, concentrate your Salvage Corvettes on the enemy capital ships while your strike craft harass them and you should be able to capture a few Ion Array Frigates. While these aren’t as good as Ion Cannon Frigates, they’ll do for now. As for that big carrier thing, just destroy it because you can’t capture it.
Research Plasma Bomb right away: Attack Bombers are very good ships. Don’t bother sending the probe, because you know that all it’s really going to accomplish is making you waste 30 bucks to find out that there’s a fleet you have to attack. Put all of your capital ships in wall formation and send them, well under the asteroids, towards the fleet you’re about to attack. Now have some fun by sending in your strike craft to anger the enemy frigates. See enemy frigate. See Scout piss off enemy frigate. See enemy frigate chase Scout.
As soon as you wipe out this fleet send the troops running back to the Mothership, it’s going to be under attack. Once that attack is over, you’ll be collecting resources for a very long time. Take the time to achieve a greater state of being. Or just make a caffeine run. Build a good fleet of Interceptors, Attack Bombers, and Heavy Corvettes.
Send out three or four squads of Attack Bombers, form Spheres of Death around dangerous asteroids and eliminate them. (You can find out which space rocks are malignant by pausing the game and using the camera to look at the field from behind your Mothership. If a rock is obscured, it must be destroyed.) Keep the squads to ten ships or under, otherwise you’ll lose a few when they get crowded. Also watch to see if any asteroids are about to hit your other ships, because the big ships will get crushed quicker than aluminum during stupid party games.
Once you’ve cleared the field, Avon’s calling, so just say no to the Bentusi and get ready to rock and/or roll in the next mission.
Garden of Kadesh
This is the first mission where success ultimately depends on the fleet you bring into it. You should, by this time, have whole mess of strike craft and corvettes, with a healthy contingent of capital ships. Right at the beginning of this mission, you will have the ability to resource Super Capital Ship technology, but hold off. You need to research Fast-Tracking Turrets later in this mission and you don’t want your scientists busy fiddling with something else.
Send out your resource collector with an escort of 20 Interceptors and at least 10 Heavy Corvettes. After a few sedate minutes of resource collection you are informed that you must join a cult or die. After a few short moments imagining the perks of polygamy, you graciously decline their offer and attempt to leave. In other words, prepare for battle.
You will have to defend your ship from swarm after swarm of enemy ships for eight minutes. While you’re getting attacked, do not bother attacking the giant jellyfish thing: if you kill it, you will just have to kill it again. It also generates those swarmers and Fuel Pods, but if you stay far enough away they can’t kill you right away.
Pay close attention to the fuel pods and strafe them relentlessly with your attack bombers. Don’t worry too much about the swarmers, they’re pretty much toast once momma’s gone. Build some Multi-Gun Corvettes as soon as possible; they will be outstanding in getting rid of those annoying little ships.
Keep on withstanding the assault, and the second the Mothership says the drive is fully charged hit the hyperspace button. The swarmers will go after your Capital Ships with incredible fervor, so get your Multi-Gun and Heavy Corvettes over to the rescue as soon as possible. Keep on checking back to your strike craft as they are launched and continue the assault on the fuel pods.
After what seems like forever, the big jellyfish will hyperspace away and you’ll have time to collect resources and rebuild. Ten Multi-Gunners and five Ion Cannon Frigates should do the trick.
The Cathedral of Kadesh
By now you’re sick and tired of this stupid nebula and that darn cosmic needle, but guess what: there are three of them on this level. The best way to take them on is to send all of your capital ships, 10 Heavy Corvettes, 10 MultiGun Corvettes, and 20 Interceptors after one of them. Use the Capitals to Form a Sphere of Death around the giant pin and the other ships to keep swarmers and their attending Fuel Pods at bay. You can pretty much throw tactics out the window and bum rush.
There is one other wrinkle happening here: Multi-Beam Frigates. The bad news is they tear through your strike craft faster than Roger Ebert can dissect the latest Carrot Top movie: the good news is that they are just slightly less ponderous than Marlon Brando. Simply send in Salvage Corvettes and capture them. It’s best to retire them so that you can buy good ships, because they’re too slow to really be worth much in battle.
Since you’re marshaling your first multi-front battle (one at a thumbtack of woe and another at the Mothership), make sure to keep on top of what’s happening, lending a hand when necessary. Unlike most games, when you pause Homeworld the interface is still fully accessible, including the ability to select ships, create groups, and bring up the movement interface. While you can’t actually issue orders, you can do the next best thing. For example, to attack another ship while paused, select all craft that will be involved in the assault, hold the cursor over the ship you’re attacking, press P, press the left mouse button (make sure the selection registers), and press P again. Voila, you’ve just issued an order while paused.
Soon after your second victory, the Guardians of Kadesh pull a brave Sir Robin and run away. Since it’s now safe, send your collectors out to start collecting and take every single combat ship in your fleet after the final inhibitor. Make sure all of your strike ships refuel before the trek: you have as much time as you need.
You will be surprised to hear a friendly signal. You won’t be surprised to realize that it’s just another derelict ship. However, it does help you locate where to go to finish the mission. There are about eight or nine yellow circles on the map, but only one has a green dot in the middle of it (head that way). It’s a long trip, and you’ll want to approach from below again. Since you have your entire fleet, you should be able to wipe out the entire group with minimum casualties, and you can enjoy learning the secret of Kadesh. When all is said and done, you might have lost twenty ships. Luckily there are about eleven thousand resource units to be had, so you’ll have time to listen to the full-length versions of Light my Fire and The End. While you’re waiting for the sun, rebuild your fleet.
The Sea of Lost Souls
This level is actually really easy if you have a lot of strike craft. Just send them in and form a sphere around that weird ship. Make sure they’re on evasive tactics because those “inactive ships” turn out to be anything but. Don’t send in any capital ships, because you’ll lose control of them.
After you shoot the big ship enough send in a Salvage Corvette and send everything back home. The Bentusi will show up, but this time you’ll want to exchange with them because it’s free. This level can be especially tedious in terms of collection. Build a Carrier and rebuild your fleet, especially with capital ships.