The tutorial doesn't give one a lot of details. For quite a long time, for example, I had no idea what Wit was for. So this section will provide advice to make the game less frustrating.
Everything in the game is measured in doors. In the upper left-hand corner, you'll see symbols for Industry (red), Science (blue), and Food (green). Each of those icons has a number under it, and the number represents how much of that resource one will receive when a door is opened. A small amount of each resource is earned automatically. To obtain more, build modules for the resource needed.
Industry pays for building; Science pays for research, and Food pays for leveling up, healing, and recruiting characters.
Whenever an artifact is discovered, it can be used to research new modules. Research is paid for with Science, and each item researched requires three doors to complete. If an artifact is broken before the research is complete, the research is lost. If the last door is opened, the research will be completed regardless of the number of doors used. An artifact is the only module that will work in a dark room; you can use an artifact without lighting the room it's in.
Research is how one obtains and upgrades modules, so it's important that research be done as quickly as possible. I normally don't build modules on the first floor because there aren't that many doors; I generally start on the second floor - Science, Industry, Food in that order. Early on, you only need enough food to level up a character to learn Operate and heal.
One other small thing to watch for is "two-fers." Occasionally, items will show up on the artifact menu that skip levels. For example, Food Generator II to IV for 100 Science lets you skip the evolution from II to III, which costs 65 Science and thus saves you a nice bit of the resource. You get two levels for the price of one, so keep an eye out for them to save a bit of Science as you go.
Setting Up Modules
Each room will have different configurations of module slots. Only one Major Module can be put in one room in the big slot with a blue cross on it. All of the other slots will hold Minor Modules (which are all the other sections in the build menu), and this number can vary greatly by room.
Three things to get in the habit of setting up are fall-back rooms, operators, and gauntlets. These will protect your modules, your characters, and your crystal.
Fall-Back Rooms - Normally, I set up a fall-back room a couple of rooms out from the crystal. You will have a major module here, a character, guns, and a support module such as a Dust Generator, which can raise character defense by up to 84%. The guns one chooses to use is a matter of taste, but a great set up when you only have three minor module slots are a KIP Cannon, a Smoking Gun, and a Tear Gas. If you have more slots, I like to throw in another Smoking Gun/KIP Cannon and/or a Neurostun. Your fall-back room is a choke point where your explorer can run back to for protection against a swarm of enemies.
Operators - Operate is a skill that allows major modules to be milked for more resources. This is where Wit comes into play. A character that has the skill Operate will stand in a room with a module; as long as he or she is standing with that module, half of his or her Wit will be added to the number of resources received. For example, let's say the default Industry amount is 8. You have built a Level 4 Industry Generator, which gives you 6 more, so you're now up to 14 Industry per door. Now you put an operator with a Wit of 20 on that module; that will add 10 more for a total of 24 Industry per door opened. Operators are outstanding! I normally have two or three Operators going at any one time. Concentrate on the resource you need. Early on, you might have two Operators on Science and one on Industry. Later, you'll have more on Food as you need to level up characters. Lots of characters can learn Operate. Josh has the highest Wit, but he doesn't have much else. Good operators are Opbot, Max, Rakya, Warden Momish, Kreyang. You'll want to level them up until they know Operate as early as you can.
Gauntlets - This is just what I call it, but a gauntlet is a series of rooms set up with guns that monsters have to run through. It's possible to survive with just fall-back rooms, but these don't always hold up if a huge wave of enemies come through, so I like to set up a series of rooms to force the monsters through so that by the time they hit the fall-back room, they're pretty beaten up. Gauntlet rooms are good places for cheaper weapons like Prisoner Prods with Teslas and Neurostuns thrown in here and there. Teslas are murder on crystalline enemies of all kinds, so scattering them across several rooms can really do some damage to hordes before they get to your characters or your crystal.
These three things are very important to having a much easier time getting through a dungeon, so use them!
The little golden suns one finds are called Dust. Ten Dust are enough to light up one room in a dungeon. At lower levels, Dust can be found simply by opening doors. At higher levels, this becomes less and less frequent, so farming Dust becomes important. There are two ways to do this: killing monsters and operating a shop. I've already given you advice on setting up for kills. Monsters can drop Dust when they die; just make sure to frequently check rooms and go pick it up. To encourage Dust farming from monsters, set up everything as mentioned above then leave a couple dark rooms at the end of a gauntlet (monsters only spawn in the dark) so that enemies will spawn, hit your gauntlet, and die, hopefully dropping Dust as they do.
The second way to farm is to build a Shop, find a Merchant, and put an Operator on the Shop. The Wit ratio on Dust is much lower than other resources: 10% of the operator's Wit instead of 50%. The most I've ever had was +5 (in the Library), so always use whichever character has the highest Wit to operate the Shop. At very high levels, like Floor 11 or 12 where Dust is a precious commodity, I will often set up a Shop first so that if I find a Merchant, he will automatically be teleported to the shop before he can be killed. I add a Mechanical Pal and an Operator. The norm is +2 or +3 Dust per door opened, which can be a true lifesaver.
Another way to maximize Dust is to use someone with the Pilfer skill (Max can upgrade Pilfer to +3). When a door is opened that gives Dust, Pilfer adds to that number +1 (more for someone like Max). Whomever in your party has this skill is the one who needs to be opening doors. You also want to take advantage of Dust Factories. For 30 Industry, a Dust Factory can be unlocked. It will either give a random amount of Dust or it will destroy all the module slots in the room. While this is a bummer, it doesn't happen that often. Unless you're really running low on Industry, use the Dust Factories.
Manipulate Lighted Rooms
With the Right Trigger, you can turn the light on and off in rooms provided you have enough Dust. Enemies will only spawn in dark rooms, so you can control where the enemies come from this way. Enemies also will not spawn in a room with one of your heroes inside, so you can use that to your advantage in a pinch, but I wouldn't leave someone alone in a dark room at higher levels for long unless you're prepared to lose that character. The biggest thing to remember here is that all rooms lit when you remove the crystal will stay lit. Let me say that again. Any room lit up when the crystal is removed will stay lit. So, when you're ready to make a run for the exit, light a path to the exit, lighting up as many side doors along the way as you can. It's much better for enemies to be behind you, probably running through all of your guns, than standing between you and the exit.
The Save option in this game is simply for taking a break. If you get a Game Over or the game crashes, your save will disappear, so it can't be used to re-load and try things again. It's strictly for stopping when you're tired.
As your heroes level up, they will learn new skills. Many of them are passive (they happen automatically), but each character will also have two special attacks that are manual; you will use one of the directional buttons on the keypad to activate it. There are several different ones, and it's not really the purpose of this faq to get into all of that. Just be aware that special attacks can be really useful (Elise's Shrapnelizer 3, for example, can shred a room of enemies instantly), so take the time to look them over for each character as you learn them. A couple of characters have a taunt skill that can be really helpful in keeping hordes off of modules or weaker characters, and Chef Namor even has one that attacks all enemies ON THE FLOOR, which is a big deal. He and Esseb Tarosh have a skill that increases Dust, too. Special attacks can't be used when you have multiple people under your control, so make sure to use your bumpers to choose whichever character has the attack that you want to activate. After activating a special attack, it will take X number of doors to recharge it, or it can be refilled instantly by using Science to "Rest your hero" on the Stats page.
Unlike anything else in the build menu, the price of Emergency Generators isn't constant (starting price is 70 Industry). The more you build, the more expensive they become, and they can eat up your Industry very rapidly, so use these only in true emergencies. An Emergency Generator built in a lit room will give you back that room's light to use in the next room. They can be used in any room with a Major Module slot. They can sometimes be really helpful, but don't let them run you out of Industry. I rarely use them, but they can sometimes really help if you have enough Industry to use them.
The game has one bug that works to the player's advantage. Sometimes, when you sell to a Merchant, the item you're selling will receive half the selling price but won't leave your inventory. You can sell the item as quickly and as often as you can hit the A button. This doesn't happen often, but when it does, exploit it. If it's Food, max out all of your characters and get some extra. Whichever resource it is, get a bunch of it; that's one resource you won't have to worry about for the rest of that dungeon.
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