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    Beginner's Guide by Lord Plothos

    Version: 1.3 | Updated: 04/28/05 | Search Guide | Bookmark Guide

    FM4 - Basics and Game Mechanics FAQ
    by Lord Plothos
    Abbreviations and terminology
       Q01: What are skills and how do they work?
       Q02: How do I gain skills?
       Q03: What determines when a skill activates?
       Q04: What are chains?
       Q05: How many skills can I equip?
       Q06: What's better: lots of skills or higher-level skills?
       Q07: What is evasion, and how does it work, exactly?
       Q08: What determines the likelihood of evasion?
       Q09: What does the speed stat do?
       Q10: What is accuracy?
       Q11: How is accuracy determined?
       Q12: How is damage determined?
       Q13: Why do some of my single shot attacks do half damage? Why do
            some of my MG or SG bullets do half what the others do?
       Q14: Why do I take damage from a BZ, even when it misses?
       Q15: How do shields work?
       Q16: How does melee damage work?
       Q16.5 How does armor work?
       Q17: What are links and how do they work?
       Q18: What are the best links to set up? How do I use links
       Q19: Can I decide what a linked wanzer does? If so, how?
       Q20: What do character levels do?
       Q21: What is the maximum level I can get?
       Q22: How do I gain levels?
       Q23: What's the fastest way to gain money?
       Q24: What's the fastest way to gain EP?
       Q25: What's the fastest way to gain exp.?
       Q26: What's the best way to _____ in battle/sim _____?
    TOPIC 8 - WHERE IS ______?
       Q27: Where is the Wanzer Shop? How can I buy stuff?
       Q28: Where is the Computer Shop?
       Q29: Where is the old equipment? Can I still get parts sold in
            previous shops?
       Q30: Where is Sim battle ____?
       Q31: What's the best way to use _Pilot Name_?
       Q32: I never use _Pilot Name_'s Backpack; what's it good for?
       Q33: How does all this power and weight stuff work?
       Q34: What parts should I buy? What are the best combinations?
       Q35: How do I set a wanzer's armor, and to what should I set it?
       Q36: Does the color of a wanzer effect anything?
       Q37: Some parts in the wanzer shop are in orange font; what's up?
       Q38: I've talked to ____, but I didn't get the ____. What gives?
       Q39: How do I get the ______?
    Thanks, legal, etc.
    Introduction: The purpose of this faq is to help the FM4 player
    make sense of some of the confusing things about this splendid game.
    The inspiration comes from extensive observation of the most frequent
    questions raised on the gamefaqs.com message board. New players
    continue to raise questions about the same issues. The message board
    is a very good resource for this type of thing, of course, and the
    FM4 board is especially helpful, I find. However, as the questions
    keep recurring, it would seem beneficial to these new players if they
    could get answers to their questions more quickly and perhaps with
    less embarrassment. Details about some of the mechanics may also
    remain mysterious to more experienced players. Some info and/or
    speculation about some of these things will help anybody who hasn't
    sat down and collected a bunch of data, then figured this stuff out.
       The questions put forward here reflect my own observations of the
    kinds of things players typically find obscure. Along the way, I'll
    include some mechanical details to help players get a clearer idea of
    how things work in FM4. Much of the mechanical stuff is mere speculation.
    I will try to indicate when this is so, and give a bit of data to back
    myself up. I have not hacked the game, so I could be wrong about many
    of the things in here. Still, it fits the data I've gotten, and I've run
    all of it by the folks on the message board, so it should be pretty safe
    to let your thinking about the game be guided by what's in here.
       Questions will be divided into topics for ease of location, but the
    complete noob might want to just read through all of this quickly.
       One thing I will not do here is advance my own (or anyone else?¡¥s)
    style of play or general strategies. I will attempt to give information
    that is certain and/or accepted truth on the board, and wherever there
    is some contention on a given matter I will indicate both sides of the
    issue whenever I can.
    -----Abbreviations and terminology I will use------
    MG - Machine Gun          RK - Rocket
    SG - Shotgun              GR - Grenade Launcher
    RF - Rifle                REP - Repair Pack
    BZ - Bazooka              EMP - EMP Wanzer or Pack
    MS - Missile              Ev - Evasion
    ML - Melee                Acc - Accuracy
    Sniper - Alternative name for a RF wanzer.
    Dodge - Alternative word to describe successful evasion.
    Burst - Used to denote the series of shots fired by burst weapons like
       MGs and SGs. An attack with a SG, for example, involves the firing
       of two bursts (provided the attacker has sufficient AP).
    <Skill Name> - Notation used to indicate that the name being used is
       for a pilot skill, such as <Double Shot I>. Many skills have an
       associated number. If I leave it off, this is to indicate what I
       have said holds in general for each of the skills of that type.
       E.g.: "<Double Shot>, though it involves firing two guns, will use
       up ammo for only one of them," for this is true of <Double Shot I>
       and <Double Shot II>.
    Rating - Term to denote the level of a given attribute. A pilot has
       ratings for speed, evasion, and weapons, indicating how skilled that
       pilot is in those areas. Speed and evasion have no set limit, but
       there is only so much that each pilot will be able to add to them
       during the course of the game. Weapon ratings never exceed 3 (lowest
       is 0).
    Battle - Indicates the larger engagement taking place on the battlefield,
       as opposed to "Firefight".
    Firefight - Indicates the smaller scale gun battle that takes place
       each time one wanzer attacks another, as opposed to "Battle".
    Chain Skills - These are the skills that can be strung together to
       create chains. Not all activation skills are chain skills, but all
       chain skills ARE activation skills. (See topic 1 below). Almost
       every time two of these skills activate in a row, they will chain
       together, increasing the damage of the later attacks.
    Damage Packet - A piece of the damage in an attack, corresponding to
       a number displayed in a firefight animation. Some weapons concentrate
       their damage into a single packet, but others divide their damage
       into numerous packets. Each packet strikes one and only one part of
       the target wanzer. (See topic 4 below).
    Q01: What are skills and how do they work?
       A: Skills are abilities gained by the various pilots in the game.
      They are said to be attached to the computer, and so more can be
      gained later in the game via the computer shop, but they are
      specific to each character and may not be swapped in any way. They
      operate like class abilities for different character in a standard
      RPG. There are enhancement skills, such as <AP +1> and <Evasion +3>,
      that increase a pilots stats permanently. These may be purchased
      multiple times with the results stacking. Getting three <Evasion +3>
      adds 9 to the pilot's evasion rating. These do not need to be
      equipped or anything else. They reflect the pilot simply getting
      better in those areas. This includes weapon ratings, which can go up
      to 3, but no further, and affect how much damage a pilot will do with
      weapons of that type. Two pilots with the same SG and differing
      SG ratings will do differing damage with those bullets that actually
      hit the target (i.e., that have not been evaded or simply missed).
      There are also resistance ratings, indicating how hard it is for an
      EMP to damage the pilot's wanzer in the indicated area. The pilot is
      better at combating the effects of the EMP pulse on these systems in
      his or her wanzer. These come in increments of 50%, with 100%
      indicating total immunity. Then there are skills that must be
      equipped by the pilot after purchasing them, sort of like armor or
      weapons. These are divided into two categories: passive skills and
      activation skills. Passive skills must be equipped, but once they are
      they will always work. These include <Move Plus>, which increases
      the pilot's range of movement by 1, <Repair Plus>, which increases
      the pilot's ability to repair damage with a repair pack, and <AP
      Plus>, which reduces the amount of AP the pilot uses up when he
      fires his weapon. Last of all, there are activation skills. These
      skills must be equipped, and have merely a chance of activating when
      the conditions are right for it to work. Examples include <Rapid
      Fire>, which increases the number of bullets fired by a MG or SG
      attack, and <Feint>, which increases the chance of dodging an attack.
      Thus, to use <Rapid Fire>, it must be equipped, and you must be
      firing a MG or SG. It will not always activate when you do so, but it
      may. Likewise, <Feint> must be equipped, and MAY activate when you
      are attacked by a weapon that can be dodged (this excludes missiles,
      grenades, and rockets). As each skill has only a chance to activate,
      the more skills you have equipped, the more chance one of them will
      activate, but the less chance any given one will. This is because
      for each shot (with a few exceptions), only one skill may activate.
      Thus, if <Rapid Fire> activates first, then <Double Shot> cannot
      activate for that shot, though it still may for the next. Defensive
      skills that activate for enemy attacks do not compete with offensive
      skills that activate for your attacks. One pilot may activate 2
      <Rapid Fire>s and then 2 <Feint>s in the same firefight.
       Advanced A: Skill activation is a bit of a mystery, but it seems
      to many of us on the board that it works like this. All skills
      a pilot has equipped and which can activate at a given moment are
      compiled into a list (the order might be fixed, but we don't know).
      The game then goes down the list and checks each skill to see if it
      activates. If one does, that is the skill you see, and the rest of
      the list is not checked. If none activate, you get nothing. This
      helps explain why you will see more activations if you have more
      skills, and also why once you have a sufficient number of them
      you'll probably activate one just about every time. This is why I
      suggest that you find a happy medium and get as many high level
      skills as you can, while still basically guaranteeing that one always
      activates (so you get those lovely chains). If you have 4 slots
      available and 6 skills already equipped, <Rapid Fire III> would be
      a good choice, as it doubles your MG or SG damage, and you have
      enough skills to be relatively sure of activation. If, on the other
      hand, you have 4 slots and only one skill, you may be better off
      going with <Rapid Fire I> and <Terror Shot I> to increase your
      activation chances, thus increasing the likelihood of chaining.
    Q02: How do I gain skills?
       A: There are two ways to get skills, the second available only a
      little ways into the game. The first works like this: Each pilot has
      a set of skills associated with him/her, and those skills are divided
      into six groups for each pilot. When you first get a pilot, they
      will have a certain number of these skill groups available to them.
      Each skill in one of these available groups may be purchased for
      the pilot by spending that pilot's EP (enhancement points, gained
      in battle). The pilot can also spend EP to open up further groups of
      skills by selecting "Upgrade" in the character setup menu. See Q1
      above for what the different skills types are, and how they work.
      Don't forget that some skills must be equipped to do anything. Once
      all six skill groups have been opened, that pilot can do nothing with
      his/her EP but purchase available skills. If there are no more skills
      you wish to purchase, then you'll have to wait for the computer shop
      to get more. The computer shop will come up later (see below for when).
      Here, you can spend money to buy further groups of skills for each
      pilot. The skills purchased and how much each costs will be displayed.
      Once the skills are purchased from the shop, they still need to be
      purchased with EP.
        Thus, there are two ways to make skills available to a pilot:
      purchase upgrades with EP or purchase skill sets from the computer
      shop with money. All skills made thus available must then be purchased
      with EP. Some of those then need to be equipped.
       Advanced A: Some skills in the computer shop menu will be listed in
      red font. This indicates that the pilot already has that skill
      either available or purchased. Thus, buying that set from the com-
      puter shop will NOT make that red skill available to the pilot.
      Thus, if you look at an evasion set and 3 of the 4 <evasion +3%>
      skills are red, buying that set will only make one <evasion +3%>
      available for the pilot to purchase with EP. For this reason, there
      may be times when you will benefit more by purchasing a LESS expensive
      set of skills in the computer shop. Nearly all skills gained
      from the pilot's original sets will be somewhere among the three
      computer shop sets, so upgrading will always make some items in
      the computer shop red. This is why weapon ratings can never exceed
      3. There are only 3 <Weapon +1> skills for each weapon type available,
      and getting it makes it red. If the pilot got all three naturally,
      he/she can't get any more from the shop.
    Q03: What determines when a skill activates?
       A: A skill has a set of preconditions that determine those occasions
      when it CAN activate. For <Rapid Fire>, this is that the pilot must
      be firing with either a MG or SG in a firefight, which can be either
      as the attacker or as a counterattack. There is a chance that the
      skill will activate on those occasions. Two chain skills cannot
      activate on the SAME shot/burst, but they can activate on EACH shot/
      burst in the firefight. Two separate bursts of the SG can
      activate a chain skill for each shot, possibly the same skill twice,
      possibly a different skill for each. When subsequent shots/busts each
      activate a skill, this CAN create a chain, increasing damage (see
      Q4 below). Because each skill has a chance to activate when conditions
      are right, the more skills you have equipped and which can activate
      for a given attack, the more chance one of them will activate, but
      the less chance a specific one will do so, for it may be precluded
      by the activation of another skill. (See the Advanced A to Q1 above
      for more information on this subject). It is not known whether higher
      level skills have lower activation percentages than lower level
      skills or not, but even if they don't, because you can equip larger
      numbers of lower level skills, you will have more activations this
      way. The downside of this, though, is that what activates will be
      less effective. A large number of high level skills is the best,
      but hard to attain. Find the balance that works best for you. (Keep
      in mind that chains are very useful in this game, so even lower
      level skills can do more damage overall if you're chaining them
      more often).
    Q04: What are chains?
       A: Chain attacks can occur when a series of attacks are made by one
      side (you or the enemy) and a chain skill activates on each one.
      Chains increase the amount of damage of the later attacks. Early in
      the game, your wanzers will not be linked, so you will not be able
      to form chains involving more than 2 shots/bursts (one character
      firing twice with a MG or SG). Later, when chains can include as many
      as 8 shots/bursts, they will become one of the most important methods
      of doing damage and defeating the enemy. The highest bonus to damage
      that can come of this is x2.0. Example: Two linked wanzers attack an
      enemy, firing twice each with MGs. All four bursts activate <Rapid
      Fire I>. The first will be at normal damage (though the skill will
      increase the number of bullets in the burst). The second will
      multiply the damage of each bullet that hits by 1.2. The third
      multiplies by 1.5, and the fourth by 2.0. Longer chains will
      involve repeated 2.0 bursts. Chains can be interrupted by an enemy
      shot, by the failure to activate a skill on one of the attacks, or
      (rarely, but it happens) by the skills simply failing to chain to-
      gether. An enemy's evading your attack will NOT interrupt the chain,
      as the skill still activates and the shots are still fired; your
      chain attack has simply missed the target.
    Q05: How many skills can I equip?
       A: Each pilot has a number of Skill Slots (this can be increased by
      purchasing upgrades). Each skill takes up a certain number of these.
      Think of it like this: each pilot has a skill backpack with so much
      room in it. Better skills take up more room. Only activation and
      passive skills require being equipped, so buy as many enhancement
      skills as you like. Be careful not to buy more activation skills than
      you can equip, unless you plan on replacing one you no longer want
      to use, or you'll be wasting EP (and later money).
    Q06: What's better: lots of skills or higher-level skills?
       A: Opinions vary. Activating more skills and making sure you create
      chains frequently is important, but so is activating good skills.
      See the answers to Q1 and Q2 above.
    Q07: What is evasion, and how does it work, exactly?
       A: As opposed to FM3, where a wanzer?¡¥s evasion was simply subtracted
      from the attacker?¡¥s accuracy, evasion in FM4 is a set percentage
      chance for a wanzer to dodge the entire attack (see question 2 below
      for info on what that chance may turn out to be). Each unit on the
      battlefield has a set evasion percentage, and for each and every
      attack that percentage is used to determine if it completely misses.
      This is totally independent of how accurate the shot is. The accuracy
      of the shot (indicated by the blue number by the target on the screen)
      is the percentage chance to hit IF the attack is not evaded. This has
      the effect of making a MG or SG attack a bit less dependable than it
      was in FM3, because when a wanzer evades, it evades all the bullets
      fired by the MG or SG, whereas in FM3 even against a high evasion
      wanzer you could be reasonably sure one or two bullets would hit. The
      evasion is graphically depicted by the wanzer stepping to the side
      when fired upon.
       Advanced A: Each attack in the firefight can be dodged. In FM4, so
      long as a pilot has enough AP, he will fire TWICE with either a MG
      or SG. The target wanzer can evade both, neither, or only one of
      these bursts. Some special attacks like <double assault> and <double
      strike> will involve two attacks, and I have seen it happen that only
      one of these is dodged. Conversely, I have never seen just one burst
      from a <double shot> attack dodged; there it seems all or nothing.
    Q08: What determines the likelihood of evasion?
       A: There are a number of factors. The first is the base chance. This
      is equivalent to the wanzer evasion plus the pilot's evasion, but
      only if the wanzer's evasion is above 0%. A wanzer with 0% evasion
      cannot dodge, no matter what the pilot's skill. Thus, the base for a
      pilot with 30% evasion in a wanzer with 11% evasion is 41% but the
      base for the same pilot in a 0% wanzer is 0%, even though the total
      of the two is 30%. The base chance is then modified by the conditions
      on the battlefield. The pilot levels of the attacker and defender
      matter, but no one knows to what degree. If you're higher level than
      your attacker, you get some advantage. Similarly, facing matters.
      Attacks from the side and back are harder to dodge. In fact, the game
      claims attacks from the back cannot be dodged (see Advanced A below).
      Terrain and weather conditions may or may not have some effect as
       Advanced A: The claim that back attacks can't be dodged has been
      seen to be false. One possible explanation is that the facing that's
      relevant is the facing in the firefight at the moment of the attack,
      NOT the facing of the wanzers at the time the fight was initiated.
      Thus, pilots with high speed ratings may be able to change their
      facing before their attacker actually fires, thereby allowing them to
      dodge. In the animation of the firefight, you will see wanzers turn
      themselves towards their attackers. This would indicate their facing,
      and so tell you if the attack is one that can be dodged. As far as I
      know, no animation has been seen in which a wanzer was faced entirely
      the wrong way, did not change its facing, and still dodged.
       Some Data: I put Darril on a bridge facing several enemies straight
      on (no facing modification) with a base evasion of 75%. I then
      recorded 200 attacks (ignoring those in which he activated <Feint>).
      He dodged almost exactly 75% of them. Thus, the numbers worked out
      pretty well, although he seemed to get no bonus from his (massive)
      level advantage.
    Q09: What does the speed stat do?
       A: Speed affects nothing but the point at which your character will
      be able to act during a firefight. Characters with higher speeds will
      shoot first whenever a firefight is started. Thus, if you are fast,
      you can counter and kill your attacker before he ever fires at you.
      If it is possible to change facing in the firefight so as to help you
      dodge, when you are able to do so is affected by speed. Speed does
      not increase a unit's evasion or accuracy percentages, nor alter AP
      use or number of attacks in any way.
       Advanced A: Different weapons have varying speed modifiers. Thus,
      two pilots with the same speed but weapons with differing speeds will
      always attack in the same order, the one with the quicker weapon
      always going first. ML attacks seem to be significantly delayed. If
      you want a ML wanzer to attack first, you'll have to give that pilot
      a large speed advantage. 2 speed is enough early on, but as speed
      ratings rise, the difference will have to be 4 or more to get the ML
      acting first. Apparently, then what matters is the relative differ-
      ence in speed, i.e., the difference relative to the numbers involved.
      2 is 1/4 of 8, but only 1/8 of 16, and the weapons may require a 1/4
      or 1/6 advantage.
    Q10: What is accuracy?
       A: Accuracy is the chance to hit with each damage packet in an
      attack, IF the enemy doesn't dodge. Accuracy does not include or
      in any way reflect the enemy's chance to dodge, in which case the
      entire attack will simply miss (see Topic 2 above). Each weapon has
      its damage indicated in the following format: NNxNN. A SG will look
      like 12x10, while a MS may look like 60x4, and a ML like 90x1. This
      indicates the number of damage packets that can strike the enemy and
      the base damage each packet will do. If the target doesn't dodge,
      then each packet has a percentage chance to hit it. That percentage
      chance is given by the accuracy. An acc of 75 will mean a 75% chance
      to hit with the one ML strike, and 75% chance for each bullet in an
      SGs burst. Thus, a bust of 10 SG bullets will probably have 7 or 8
      hit, again, IF the target does not evade the attack. Each of the
      packets that successfully strike the target will randomly strike one
      of its parts (legs, body, or left or right arm). (See Q12 below for
      info on what happens when parts are broken.) Your accuracy is
      displayed on the screen by the blue number next to the target. The
      accuracy of your target's counter attack, if any, will be displayed
      in red next to you. (There will also be a line of blue boxes and a 
      line of red boxes between you, which move at different speeds. These
      lines represent graphically the accuracy. They move fast if your
      accuracy is high, and slowly if it's low. That's all they mean. A
      line will be grayed out if it encounters an obstruction, and you will
      see a tiny X indicating where that obstruction is.) If there is no
      number, it means the enemy can't counter (he may be out of ammo or
      AP). If it is 0%, he can't hit, usually because of intervening
      obstacles like trees, and so he will not be able counter. If the
      number is non-zero, he can counter, and he pretty much always will.
       Advanced Tip: You can use this last fact to your advantage. A
      powerful unit can be made to waste its AP if you cause it to fire
      with a very low accuracy. Once its AP is used up, it can then be
      attacked without fear of counter. This helps against Wagner on more
      than one occasion.
    Q11: How is accuracy determined?
       A: Each weapon has a range, and weapons for which accuracy matters
      have their accuracy displayed in the following manner:
         1           X
         YY%        ZZ%
      The YY number represents the base accuracy of the weapon from a range
      of 1 square. X is the extreme range of the weapon, the furthest
      distance from which it can be fired, and the ZZ number is it's base
      accuracy from that range. Middle accuracies fall in between these
      numbers and you just have to calculate or guess at them. This base
      weapon accuracy is then modified by the accuracy of the arm holding
      the weapon. The overall base accuracy is then modified by weather
      conditions (which can also affect range), light levels, and pilot
       The modifier for arm accuracy is NOT simply added to the base accuracy
      of the weapon, as we here at the gamefaqs board had previously thought.
      Rather, the base accuracy of the weapon is increased by that percent.
      That is, a base 80% and a +20% arm do NOT yield a 99% accuracy (at 
      least not without a bonus for being high level). Instead, they yield a
      96%. A 39% base accuracy in the same +20% arm yields only a 47%. This
      newly modified accuracy is further multiplied by 1.09 if your level is
      higher than your target's. Thus, the 96% above would indeed increase to
      99% (the maximum) and the 47% would become a 51%. This accuracy score
      is then lowered by adverse conditions such as bad weather or poor light.
       Overall the formula works like this:
         Accuracy = (base accuracy of the weapon for the range in question) *
         (1 + percentage modifier of the arm pulling the trigger, expressed as
         a decimal) * (1.09 if your level is higher than your target's)
         [round down, then modify for adverse conditions]
       For example: the FV-24B at a range of 4 squares has a base accuracy of 
      58%. If equipped in an arm with a +30% modifier and fired at a lower-
      level target, the accuracy before deductions for adverse conditions is:
         (.58)*(1 + .3)*(1.09) = .82186, which rounds down to 82%
       At a range of 1, it's far better:
         (.80)*(1.3)*(1.09) = 1.1336, that is, 99%
       Thus, more accurate weapons benefit MORE from good arms than do less
      accurate weapons (because you're not adding .3, you're adding 30% of the
      original accuracy, which is a larger amount the more accurate you were 
      to begin with). Likewise, the level advantage will help you more if
      you're more accurate. On the other side of the coin, poor arms will hurt
      accurate weapons more than inaccurate weapons.
          Advanced A: ML, MS, RK, and GR DO NOT benefit or suffer from any
      accuracy modification of the arm. A pile bunker ML weapon has a base
      90% acc no matter what arm is equipped, though this 90% can be in-
      creased by a level advantage. For weapons that require two hands,
      like RFs and BZs, the accuracy of the off hand is irrelevant. Only
      the acc of the hand pulling the trigger matters. Likewise, it appears
      the acc of the chosen MG or SG in a <double shot> attack is all that
      matters. If you have weight issues, you can use a high acc arm on the
      primary gun and a low acc arm for the off gun. (Just make sure the
      primary gun has enough ammo, and make sure it is the one set to
      attack AND defense support.) (See Q19 below).
    Q12: How is damage determined?
       A: As just noted, damage for each weapon comes in a set number of
      packets. 60x4 means four packets that do a base minimum of 60. 12x10
      means 10 bullets that do a base minimum of 12. The damage from each
      packet can fluctuate, however. The range of damage depends on the 
      size of the base minimum damage. To find the upper bound of the damage
      range, divide the base minimum damage by 10, round up, and subtract 
      1. This number is then added to the base minimum damage to find the 
      maximum damage for that packet. That is, for 1-10, add 0, for 11-20,
      add 1, for 21-30, add 2, etc. Thus, a damage packet with a base
      minimum of 7, for instance, will just always do 7. A packet with a
      minimum of 33 will do between 33 and 36. A packet with a base minimum
      of 300 will do between 300 and 329, while a packet with a minimum of
      301 will do between 301 and 331. The number displayed by the weapon 
      in the wanzer setup and wanzer shops (and in the in-battle displays)
      reflects the base minimum damage. You can expect the average damage,
      without any other modifiers to possibly be roughly 10% higher than this
      listed number, and about 5% higher on average.
        Additionally, this base minimum damage is increased when the pilot
      is proficient with the weapon in question. If a pilot has a SG rating
      of 3 and a MG rating of 0, she will do more with a 10x10 SG than with
      a 10x10 MG. The damage increase is a 20% bump to the base minimum
      damage for each 1 point increase in the relevant weapon rating. Thus,
      a pilot with a 0 in MG, who fires a 10x10 MG and does not activate a
      skill, will fire 10 packets of 10 damage each (which can then be
      reduced by armor; see below). Conversely, a pilot with a rating of 3
      in MG, firing the same gun, and who also activates no skill, will fire
      10 packets of 16-17 damage each. Skills and chain attacks (and the 
      melee modifier discussed below) have an associated damage multiplier
      (e.g., x1.5 for the third attack in a chain), which mulitplies the 
      base minimum damage above and beyond any increase for weapon rating.
      Thus, a pilot with a 3 in MG, firing a 10x10 MG, who activates <terror
      shot> as the third skill in a chain, thus getting a 1.5 modifier would
      multiply the base minimum of 16 by 1.5, getting 24, so each of her 
      damage packets would do between 24 and 26.
        Damage is reduced by 30% when armor of the appropriate type has been
      equipped by the target. MG bullets that would normally do 10 will do 7.
      The upper bound on reduced damage does not follow exactly the pattern
      given above, but it is very close, and the frequencies of the numbers 
      are weighted, so that average damage is reduced by 30% over all. There
      is no penalty for having armor of a given type; that is, your armor is
      never especially weak against one type of attack. You can only reduce 
      damage by having armor of the same type as the attack. (See the advanced
      A 2 below.)
        Damage for GR and RK is evenly spread over the wanzer struck. Damage
      for GR decreases with the damage-taker's distance from the target
      square. Damage for RKs is random over the whole attack area. See Q7
      below for special rules regarding ML attacks.
       Advanced A: Damage from a single packet that exceeds the HP of the
      part struck is wasted. Thus, hitting an arm with 1 HP with a ML
      attack that does 900 damage in reality does only 1 damage, destroying
      the arm. The extra damage is wasted. Unlike FM3, in which destroyed
      parts were ignored, in FM4, a part that has been destroyed is no less
      likely to be hit than it was before being destroyed. Damage from a
      packet that hits a destroyed part is halved and then transferred to
      the body. Thus, a ML attack on a wanzer with its arm blown off that
      would normally do 900 damage will, if it hits the arm, do 450 to the
      body instead. Another effect of all this is that a ML attack on a
      wanzer with only 1 HP left on each its parts has just a 1 in 4 chance
      to kill it, even if it hits. A SG attack, on the other hand, is
      guaranteed to kill it, so long as it connects with at least 4 bullets
      (and the damage isn't reduced to 0 by a <Block Damage> or <Anti-Break>
      skill), because once the bottom three parts are destroyed a bullet
      that hits them will have its damage transferred to the body, thus
      destroying the wanzer.
        Advanced A 2: Bazookas do two types of damage. (See Q 14). The first
      is a shell doing impact damage, and the second is a cluster of scatter
      packets doing fire damage. If your armor is strong against impact, it 
      will reduce by 30% the damage from the shell, but not affect the fire
      damage, and vice versa. Moreover, there are skills, such as <fire shot>
      or <piercing strike> that add damage of a certain type, which may or 
      may not be the same as the weapon's original type. The added damage is
      determined by a percentage of the weapon's damage. If the types differ,
      armor strong against one will reduce that damage and only that damage.
      For this reason, activating <impact shot> against an enemy with impact 
      armor will add less to your attack than activating <piercing shot> 
      would have.
    Q13: Why do some of my single shot attacks do half damage? Why do some
      of my MG or SG bullets do half what the others do?
       A: This is due to the damage transfer rule outlined in the advanced
      answer to Q12 above. Hits to broken parts are transferred to the
      target's body, and damage thus transferred is halved.
    Q14: Why do I take damage from a BZ, even when it misses?
       A: BZ damage comes in two forms. The first shot can hit or miss, and
      is impact damage. This is followed by 4 fire damage packets that will
      almost always hit no matter what. Very low acc can cause the fire to
      miss as well, as can the shell striking something on the way to the
      target (like a tree in the way). Otherwise, even if the shell misses,
      the scatter damage will still hit. If the target evades, the fire
      damage will miss as well.
    Q15: How do shields work?
       A: The main benefit of the shield is often not the damage reduction,
      but instead the fact that it makes all damage go to the arm holding
      the shield. Even the fire damage from the BZ (whether the shell
      missed or not) will hit the arm (which is usually unimportant and has
      lots of HP). The damage taken will be reduced by the % listed for the
      shield. The AP used is 2 for each attack blocked. Thus 4 AP is needed
      to block both bursts from a SG, but only 2 for a RF or ML attack. If
      the target dodges, no AP or shield "ammo" is used up; however, if the
      target does not dodge, even if the shot misses, both AP and ammo will
      go down (annoying, but true).
       Advanced A: <AP plus> and <AP damage> skills attach to each use of
      the shield. Thus <AP damage> can render shields pretty useless, as it
      can take 6 or more AP to block one SG burst! Useful on simulator D8.
    Q16: How does melee damage work?
       A: Like all weapons, ML have a base attack damage that can be in-
      creased by the pilots ML rating. This can be increased by activated
      skills and by chaining skills, as with other weapons. ML, however,
      have in addition to this the following modifier:
          N = wanzer's total power/wanzer's total weight
      Any ML attack is multiplied by the N for that wanzer. This is in
      addition to all other modifiers. Thus, if Latona has a weight of 200,
      and a power output of 400, her N is 2. So, her damage will be multi-
      plied by two. If she's acting late in a long chain, the x2 from that
      makes her attack x4 overall. Whatever her base damage is, modified
      for her weapon rating and any added damage from the activation of
      the skill is then multiplied by 4! Late in the game, ML attacks can
      easily exceed 1,000 points of damage. N canNOT exceed 2, however. A
      150 to 400 weight-to-power ratio still results in a x2 modifier.
    Q16.5: How does armor work?
       A: Armor of the appropriate type reduces damage by 30%. See A and 
      Advanced A 2 for Q12 above.
    Q17: What are links and how do they work?
       A: Links affect who takes part in a given firefight. If no one is
      linked, when a wanzer is attacked, he and his attacker are the only
      ones involved. Links have the effect of including more wanzers in
      these firefights. Each pilot can have up to 3 attack links and 3
      defense links, meaning 3 additional pilots can be included on each
      side of the firefight, for a total of 8 wanzers. Yikes! The links are
      set up in the "pilot setup" screen, and work as follows. The two
      lynchpins are the attacker and his target. For each ally the attacker
      has linked in his attack links, they will assist him when he attacks,
      so long as they are in range and have enough AP/ammo to do so. For
      each ally the defender has in his defense links, they will assist him
      when he is attacked, so long as the same conditions hold. Thus, if
      Darril is linked to Renges defensively and Chaeffer offensively,
      Chaeffer will fire at Darril's target when Darril attacks, if he can,
      but will do nothing when Darril gets attacked, even if he's right
      there. Renges will fire at anyone he can who attacks Darril, but will
      do nothing when Darril is the aggressor. If THEY do not have Darril
      listed in THEIR links, Darril will not assist them in attack or
      defense. The fact that they're in HIS links only means anything when
      HE is a lynchpin in a firefight (attacker or target). Links are the
      only way to get lots of people firing in the same firefight, and so
      are the only way to form the long, damage-multiplying chain attacks
      that are the core of the later 2/3 of this game (see above).
       Advanced A: The only wanzers that will take damage in a firefight are
      the attacker and his target, with one exception. Appropriately linked
      wanzers are always part of the battle (even if they have insufficient
      AP or ammo to do anything), while unlinked wanzers are not. As such,
      linked wanzers can block your line of fire, while non-linked wanzers
      will not (they basically vanish for the duration of the firefight).
      You will not hit a friend with your shot even if he decreases your
      accuracy, but you CAN hit a foe who does so. Sometimes you can use
      this to your advantage. When firing a MG or SG, don't shoot at the
      guy with 1 HP; shoot at the guy behind him. You may still hit the
      first guy, killing him, and some shots will go on to hit the guy
      behind him. Plus, if the first burst kills the intervening guy, the
      second burst will still be fired, whereas had the first burst been
      directed at the guy in front, there would be no second burst. The
      enemy isn't smart enough to use this to his advantage, but you may
      still find yourself sometimes taking damage to two wanzers in one
      fight. Obviously, this strategy isn't effective for single-packet
      weapons like RF and ML.
    Q18: What are the best links to set up? How do I use links effectively?
       A: This is more of a tactical question, and so not really intended to
      be part of this guide, but some suggestions help illustrate the mechan-
      ics of the link system, so here are some ways many people set things
      up. First of all, linking early in the game is less of a factor than it
      is later. This is because massive amounts of attacks typically require
      massive amounts of AP, which your units just don't have early on. A
      pilot with only 12 AP can fire a MG only thrice per round, and that's
      only if he/she doesn't move first. So, if he/she attacks, that's
      basically it for him/her. The big exception to this early on is the
      melee wanzer, because melee attacks take only 1 AP. Unfortunately,
      because ML attacks have to be made from an adjacent square, they are
      not very useful defensively. They can be very nice in an attack link,
      though. Putting Latona in the attack links of both Hermes and Elsa
      early on lets her move and attack, then link into the attacks of both
      those two pilots. Thus, she can be active in three linked firefights
      even early on, something the other members of the squad can't do. When
      you get more AP later on, linking gunners becomes more and more useful/
      necessary. Another thing which helps with this is the <AP Plus> skill.
      Any pilot involved in the firefight (i.e., even if they're out of range
      or ammo) who has <AP Plus II> equipped will reduce the AP cost of all
      attacks by friendlies by 1. Thus, if all four linked wanzers have it,
      all attacks take 4 less AP than they would have otherwise (minimum of
      0). MGs and SGs will fire for free, as will MLs. BZs and RFs will fire
      for 2. You can also include <AP Plus I>, which takes off a further
      AP, but only if the wanzer who has it equipped is one of the link
      lynchpins: i.e., the attacker or the target. Links with RFs and BZs
      can be very effective once you have enough AP or <AP Plus> to allow for
      lots of firing, because their range makes it extremely easy to involve
      them in firefights (they can typically hit a larger number of units
      from any given square). Be careful, though, because these weapons can
      run out of ammo fast, and if they're always firing they surely will.
      Later in the game, MGs and SGs will also have highly limited ammo, so
      spreading links out amongst your party is often a good idea. Another
      thing to do is to set any two-gun wanzers to attack-link with one
      weapon and defense-link with the other. This evens out their ammo use.
      (See below about setting link actions.)
    Q19: Can I decide what a linked wanzer does? If so, how?
       A: Yes, you can. Remember that when you attack you decide what the
      attacking wanzer will do by selecting (with square) which weapon to
      fire, etc. When a linked wanzer acts, what it does is automatic, but
      you can determine ahead of time what that action will be. In the
      link setup screen, select "set support action". Here, you will be
      given two choices: one for attack links and one for defense links.
      What you set here determines what your wanzer does when supporting
      an ally's attack or when coming to the aid of a targeted ally. You
      can set any MG, SG, BZ, RF, or ML that the wanzer has equipped, and
      they will function just as if you had fired the weapon yourself.
      Thus, if you set Elsa to SG for attack support and MG for defense
      support, she will fire her SG when she is included in an ally's
      attack links, has enough ammo, has enough AP, and is in range of
      the ally's target; she will fire her MG when she can at anyone in
      range who attacks an ally that has her included in its defensive
      links. Setting different weapons to different support actions helps
      to spread out ammo use for a two-gun wanzer. It also allows for a
      SG/ML wanzer like Darril to use ML for attack (see above for why
      that's nice) and SG for defense. It is often a good idea to put
      longer range weapons in defense links, because you have less control
      over who is where when it's the enemy who's moving. Later, you will
      also be able to put backpacks into support action slots, just like
      weapons. Actually, you can always put them there, but early on this
      won't do anything, because your packs will have no support functions.
      Later, EMP packs will have anti-missile capabilities, which will
      protect any unit in range (and who is linked the EMP unit's backpack
      defensively) from missile attacks (up to ten times). You will also
      be able to set radio packs to salvage destroyed allies. Missile
      anti-lock is very nice, salvage much less so.
    Q20: What do character levels do?
       A: Levels effect two things only: accuracy and evasion. If unit A is
      a higher level than unit B, it gains an accuracy bonus when attacking
      unit B, and an evasion bonus when unit B attacks it. Rumors that level
      also increases the chances of activating skills have not been sub-
      stantiated, and the game gives no overt indication that this is so.
      Keeping your levels above those of the enemy is advisable, but hardly
      necessary, as the advantage is small. It is unclear whether greater
      differences in level mean greater advantages, and if so how much.
    Q21: What is the maximum level I can get?
       A: 30.
    Q22: How do I gain levels?
       A: You gain levels by gaining experience. A unit will gain experience
      whenever an enemy unit is destroyed and whose destruction your unit
      took part in. If your unit ever attacked it, was offensively linked to
      a unit that attacked it, defensively linked to a unit that was
      attacked by it, or even if your unit healed damage done by that unit,
      you will gain exp when it is destroyed. The amount gained (I think)
      is based on how good the enemy is and where your team is in the
      storyline. Thus, the further you go, the less exp you'll gain in a
      given sim (though the decrease may stop at a certain point, for you
      can still get significant exp by soloing D2 and U1 even very late in
      the game and with very high-level characters. Your radio man will
      quite easily hit the level 30 cap if you visit the sims often.
    Q23: What's the fastest way to gain money?
       A: Sim battles that can be completed quickly and result in good money
      are the best way to do this. D2 is very good for Durandal, especially
      after you get the radio pack. D8 and D4 are also good. U1 is very,
      very fast if you have the minotaur arms. U11 is good as well. See my
      Bare Bones FAQ for info on the money received from each sim. Determine
      how easy they are to beat quickly and use that to determine which
      sims you want to fight.
    Q24: What's the fastest way to gain EP?
       A: The skill <EP Plus> helps a lot, if you need a character to gain
      EP fast. Soloing sims is another good way to get one character a lot
      of EP. D2 with a radio (you can slap a radio on anybody for a while
      and do this, then slap it back on Beck or whoever) is excellent for
      this. U8 is very good, as it is easy and quick. U1 with a minotaur
      will also work well.
    Q25: What's the fastest way to gain exp.?
       A: See Q2 above. Generally, if you're gaining a bunch of EP, you're
      gaining a bunch of exp. Radios and Minotaurs are great ways to do
    Q26: What's the best way to _____ in battle/sim _____?
       A: For strategies on specific battles, check the FAQ/Walkthroughs.
      You can also ask for advice on the gamefaqs.com message board. There
      are many helpful contributors there.
    TOPIC 8 - WHERE IS ______?
    Q27: Where is the Wanzer Shop? How can I buy stuff?
       A: The wanzer shop isn't available right away. It will open up later.
      It's hard to miss, as it will become an option on the main menu, just
      like "Talk" and "Pilot Setup". The first shop for Durandal is available
      just before Mission 05 - Polish Resource Base. The first shop for the
      UCS 332nd is available just after Mission 08 - Port Cumana. See my Bare
      Bones FAQ.
    Q28: Where is the Computer Shop?
       A: Like the wanzer shop, the computer shop is not available early.
      It will also become an option from the main menu. The first comp. shops
      are: for UCS, just after Mission 10 - Rural Village, and for Durandal,
      just before Mission 11 - Wassau. See my Bare Bones FAQ.
    Q29: Where is the old equipment? Can I still get parts sold in previous
       A: Yes, but you have to go to the "Simulator" and then pick "Online
      Shop" from the menu there. All previous equipment is available here
      except Durandal shop 3, which is only available for a brief time in
      Port Nicolaev. See my Bare Bones FAQ.
    Q30: Where is Sim battle ____?
       A: Each sim battle has to be unlocked. Durandal sims D1-D8 and UCS
      sims U1-U7 are unlocked by completing a battle in the story. Sims
      D9-D14 and U8-U14 must be unlocked by meeting some special criteria.
      Through the 12th sims for each side, there are two ways to open each
      sim, one that can be accomplished in a story battle, and one in the
      simulator. Check my Bare Bones FAQ for what these criteria are in
      each case. For sims D13, D14, U13, and U14, there are almost
      certainly more criteria than those given in my FAQ. This is because
      the exact criteria have not been determined. Most likely these also
      include meeting all the criteria for opening the "special" sims
      (8/9-12). That is, meet the storyline criteria AND the sim criteria.
      D14 appears to require that you meet at least two separate criteria.
      The first involves D13, so you will have to open that first. The
      second involves mission 27 (kill the AA wanzers by turn 8). Unlike
      D9-D12, where meeting EITHER of the two criteria listed will open
      the sim, D14 requires you to meet BOTH. D13, U13 and U14 may also
      have additional criteria, but they have not be positively identified
      as of yet.
    Q31: What's the best way to use _Pilot Name_?
       A: Again, this FAQ is not intended as a means of suggesting strategy,
      just as a way of helping you to form your own. Here are some things to
      take into account as you proceed. As outlined above, each character
      has a set of skills they need only EP to obtain. Other skills must be
      bought in the computer shop, and are often unavailable until late in
      the game. Thus, any time you want to change one pilot from his/her
      "normal" role, that pilot will always fail to be perfectly suited to
      their new role until late in the game. A good example of this is the
      weapon ratings. Latona, e.g., gets only ML weapon ratings naturally.
      Other weapon proficiencies she must get from the computer shop. Making
      her a RF wanzer prior to the third shop means she cannot have a rating
      of 3 in RF. You may still find a rating 2 RF of more value than a
      rating 3 ML, however, depending on your style. Also, typically, a
      pilot's skills will not be suited to other weapons, so switching their
      role means either buying a ton of new skills or doing without, thus
      reducing effectiveness. The call is yours.
    Q32: I never use _Pilot Name_'s Backpack; what's it good for?
       A: All packs have their uses, but depending on how you play you may
      not find a need for them all. Don't sell any of them short, but don't
      stick with something that's clearly no help to you just because it's
      in the game. Sometimes, however, packs become either more or less
      useful as the game goes on, so you may get rid of a pack that would
      prove to be a big help later on. (Naturally, you can dump the pack
      until that point, and then pick it up again.) EMP packs, for instance,
      gain missile anti-lock capabilities (See the Links topic above), which
      gives them a novel and very real value. The value of sensors will vary
      depending on the value you place on missiles, and your tendency/desire
      to separate your forces. There are battles in which sensors can be
      very useful. All can be useful sometimes, though. The key is to
      determine which is useful ENOUGH to make it worth lugging the thing
      around all the time.
       Example A: Latona's early 50% EMP may seem too unreliable, but you
      may like the following tactic. With Latona in Elsa's and Hermes'
      attack links, she'll get two free attacks on any wanzer she's next to,
      and he probably won't survive that. Plus, you have to move SOMEbody in
      first, and you don't want him/her to get clobbered. So, send Latona in
      first, have her EMP a guy she's NOT next to (thus avoiding counters),
      and then move Elsa and Hermes in to shower lead on the guy she IS next
      to. Now he's dead, and his friend is EMPed half the time.
       Example B: Bosch has a sensor pack and you're in a battle with a
      bunch of allied missile wanzers that can't move far or survive well.
      Move him forward and they can chip in from range for a ton of free
      damage THAT CAN'T BE DODGED. Quite a way to take out some of those
      dodgy enemies.
       Advanced A: Do not underestimate the secondary abilities of the radio
      pack. Few disvalue the air strike, but don't forget the armor coating
      and supply features. Supply can save you late in the game, when your
      MGs have only 20 shots. Armor at a key moment can really soften the
      blow of a big foe you weren't prepared for.
    Q33: How does all this power and weight stuff work?
       A: A wanzer has a power output, given by a numerical value. All parts
      and equipment have weight values, also given numerical values. The
      total weight of the wanzer cannot exceed its total power output. You
      can see these numbers listed in the wanzer setup and wanzer shop
      screens at the top right of the screen next to a bar, which represents
      the ratio of weight to power. As the bar fills up, this indicates that
      you have less power to spare. Power comes from two sources: the wanzer
      body and the backpack. Not all packs give additional power, but all
      bodies do. To find total power, add the outputs from these two sources.
      All parts, weapons, and packs have weight as well. Thus, since the body
      and pack have weights, the spare power you have left over for
      additional parts and weapons is less than the power output: it is equal
      to power output minus the weight of the body and the pack. Each part
      you add, each arm or set of legs, adds weight, reducing spare power.
      Likewise for weapons. When you swap parts (e.g. buy a new right arm),
      if the new part is heavier, you will reduce the spare power by the
      difference. Swapping a 40 wt. arm for a 20 wt. arm decreases your
      power surplus by 20, making it harder to put heavier parts/weapons
      elsewhere. If you do not have sufficient power to accommodate the
      heavier arm, you will not be allowed to equip it. Keep in mind that
      weapons can weigh a lot, so when buying parts you need to leave power
      for weapons as well. Typically, as parts get better, they get heavier.
      Likewise for weapons. Fortunately, as bodies get better they provide
      more spare power. Packs can weigh a lot too, and do not always add
      power to make up for it. Sensors, repair packs, and EMPs are usually
      very heavy with no power output, so you'll need a body with LOTS of
      spare power to hold it in addition to arms, legs, and weapons. Bodies
      with lots of spare power generally have less evasion, and sometimes
      major penalties that prevent dodging at all! For this reason, Hermes
      and Zead early on are generally unable to dodge much, Hermes because
      of his heavy repair pack, Zead because of his heavy missiles. Latona
      can remain dodgy, despite her heavy EMP pack, but only because her
      arms and weapons can be extremely light (remember that ML and MS
      weapons are unaffected by arm acc). She will still suffer in the
      damage department, though. (See the damage topic above).
       Example: Hermes is in shop Durandal 1. He's in his original Giza
      wanzer. The Giza's body has a weight of 75 and a power output of 320,
      leaving 245 power to spare. The arms weigh 30 each, leaving 185. The
      legs weigh 40, leaving 145. His repair pack weighs 100, leaving just
      45, and his Raptor MG weighs 32, leaving a mere 13 spare power. Thus,
      with this setup, the display at the top right of the screen will read
      307/320, with the bar almost entirely filled. The only other legs he
      will be able to equip now will be the Valiant F and Wildgoat legs,
      because his current legs weigh 40 and the next heaviest weigh 60, so
      all he can change to are the lighter ones... but, unfortunately,
      both of these would be a big step down. He can switch both arms to
      Zenith, though, because they weigh 32, only 2 more each than those of
      the Giza, leaving him with 9 spare power. However, he only needs good
      accuracy for his gun arm, so he should only switch one. That leaves
      11 power. Oh no! The best MG weighs 20 more than his current one.
      Should he settle for the middle gun? But wait! His off arm doesn't
      need acc AT ALL. Swap that for a Wildgoat (weight = 16), and he'll
      have enough for the new gun arm and the best MG (11 + 16 - 20 = 7).
      So he's got a good MG with a +10% acc. arm. Not bad. Better still,
      though, if he changes his body to a Stork, he'll have 260 power to
      play with from the beginning, instead of the 245 from the Giza.
      That's an increase of 15, for a total of 22! He can improve his legs
      with that! (Note: this is not a suggested build. I do something much
      different with Hermes. This is just for illustration).
       Note: Items (like repair 200, or missile reloads) do not weigh
      anything. They only take up space in the repair pack. Each pack has
      a number of item spaces, and each item takes up a certain number of
      these. Item packs have the most space, but power packs have some too,
      and some special packs you can get later have item space as well
      (e.g., a certain repair pack you can get in the simulator).
    Q34: What parts should I buy? What are the best combinations?
       A: I'm not going to build your wanzers for you. Half of the game
      lies in how you outfit your wanzers and pilots. Here are some things
      to keep in mind. First of all, you can find lists of the shop sets
      in my Wanzer Shop FAQ, where all the parts, packs, and weapons are
      listed in what I think is a helpful manner. Wanzers with heavier
      loads (e.g., missleers, grenadiers, mechanics, EMPs, etc.) may have
      to sacrifice evasion in order to get the weight needed to carry all
      their stuff. The bodies with the most spare power usually have huge
      evasion penalties, and no matter what legs you have you won't be
      dodging. If you have to use one, make sure your other parts have
      high HP, or keep your wanzer out of battle. Sacrifice symmetry when
      you need to. Don't make both arms the same if it's not the best
      setup. Often you'll have only one gun (e.g. RF wanzers or MG wanzers
      with repair packs). If so, make the off arm light and high HP. Make
      gun arms as accurate as possible, but keep in mind that missiles,
      grenades, rockets, and melee weapons don't benefit or suffer from
      arm accuracy modifiers, so you can use lighter, less accurate arms
      there. Movement is important for just about everybody, but evasion
      isn't always too critical. Keep in mind what you'll be doing with
      the wanzer in question when determining which is most important.
      Don't forget about power packs if you're just shy of being able to
      accommodate a part you want. Power packs in this game can even carry
      a few items in there, so missleers can carry reloads and get some
      extra power for mobility too. Fit your wanzer to the pilot and the
      role they're gonna be playing in your force. I usually buy by
      weapons first (though sometimes I'm forced to buy a body first to
      get the extra power I need), then build the rest of the wanzer
      around that, maximizing whatever I need maximized (e.g. acc, ev,
      HP, movement, etc.).
    Q35: How do I set a wanzer's armor, and to what should I set it?
       A: In the "wanzer setup" screen, pick "Set Armor". What armor is
      best depends on what the next battle will be like. You can guess,
      or check a faq like my Bare Bones FAQ or one of the walkthroughs.
    Q36: Does the color of a wanzer effect anything?
       A: Just how funky fresh you look. Pick whatever you think looks
      good and bask in the light of your aesthetic sensibilities. Camo
      in the jungle won't make you any harder to hit.
    Q37: Some parts in the wanzer shop are in orange font; what's up?
       A: The orange color indicates that your team owns at least one of
      that particular piece of equipment. Any time you have a part (or
      weapon) either equipped or in your stock inventory, that item will
      be listed in orange font whenever it is available in the shop you're
      perusing. There will also be a number at the bottom right of the
      shop screen: "Team Surplus". Whenever a piece of equipment in the
      shop is highlighted, if you have any of that type in your stock, the
      number will be displayed here. This is to let you know you have a
      spare before you shell out money for a new one. Keep an eye on it.
    Q38: I've talked to ____, but I didn't get the ____. What gives?
       A: Many of the items you get from conversations require several
      conversations throughout the game. You must carry out ALL of them
      before you actually receive the item in question. See my Bare
      Bones FAQ for info on when you should talk to someone, and when
      you can expect to get an item out of it.
    Q39: How do I get the ______?
       A: There are two ways to get special items in FM4. Some you can
      get via conversation (see Q38 above) between battles. Some you
      get in the simulator. There are special simulator battles that
      must be unlocked by meeting certain criteria (see Q30 above).
      Check out my Bare Bones FAQ for info on what you can get from the
      sims and how to open the sims in the first place.
    Legal: This FAQ is for distribution through gamefaqs.com
    only, and is intended solely for the assistance of the
    Front Mission 4 player as he is playing Front Mission 4.
    No part of this FAQ may be reproduced, used, or cited for
    any other reason, for profit or otherwise without written
    permission from the author.
    Contact Information: For advice, comments, or questions,
    you may contact me at holopanien<at>juno.com. Info on
    mistakes, gaps or other errors will be greatly
    Special Thanks is due to the many participants on the
    gamefaqs.com FM4 message board. Data collection, analysis,
    and theory-building has been greatly facilitated by many
    of these insightful, courteous people.
    Copyright 2004 Ben Fiedor

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