Minisquadron (Mini Squadron) Special Edition Strategy Guide iPhone, iPad, iPod, and Android: How to Score More Points!
I have not seen a comprehensive strategy guide for the frantic shooter "MiniSquadron" from SuperMono Studios (ported to Android by Gray Fin). Yet there seem to be quite a bit of questions regarding this fun little shooter. So, here we go!
This guide will cover the weapon types, plane types, and comments about the individual "maps" or levels.
There are three ways to get a great score:
- kill streaks
If you can kill other planes without even getting hit, you get a multiplier bonus, and the multiplier keeps going up for every kill in the streak until you hit 9x. And it stays there until you get hit. Then you have to build it up again.
If you destroy the enemy plane in mid-air (I call it 'overkill') you get 10x bonus for that kill.
If you use a laser you hit enemies all across the playing field, so you score points more often than other weapon. Even just a 'sweep' across the map will often yield some points.
Thus, this suggests two approaches:
a) find weapons with fastest reload with highest damage, so you can kill enemies quickly, and preferably, kill them in mid-air, which does not depend on kill streaks. AND don't get hit.
b) use a pivoting laser shooter (such as "Green Giant") so you can 'sweep' the enemies to get almost continuous scores, at least for lower levels.
Nothing will kill the other aircraft in one shot, so the trick is how to land multiple shots onto the other enemy planes while NOT getting hit. Thus, the more firepower the better. (Doh!)
A few notes about my subjective measures:
- Firing rate: High (more than 5 shots a second) to Low (less than 2 shots per second)
- Damage: no specific measure, just general impression
- Range: half a screen or less is lousy, about 3/4 of a screen is good, even more (goes way off the screen) is great.
Cannons: high firing rate, lousy damage, lousy range
Triple Cannon >> Double Cannon >> Cannon
Pivoting version is better than the plain version. (Only on advanced planes, allows you to shoot in ANY direction, not just where the plane is facing. )
The trick with the bigger cannons is first, the "reload" delay is longer. Single cannon delay is 0.2 seconds. Double cannon is 0.3, and Triple Cannon is 0.4 seconds. So the bigger the cannon, the slower they shoot. Second, the shots are "spread" slightly for the double and triple, not straight ahead, more of a bit of shotgun effect.
In general, this makes the cannons relatively low on my favorite weapons list. It is good for newbies who can't aim, so just hold the button down move your nose vaguely in the direction of the enemy, and hope you score hits. You have to get close to the enemy to score hits.
Missiles: low firing rate, okay damage, okay range
Sticky Missile >> Pivoting Straight Missile >> Straight Missile
Straight missile shoots straight ahead, in the direction of the "nose" of the plane. It is relatively slow to reload (about 0.4-0.6 seconds) compared to cannon, but do more damage.
Pivoting Straight Missile is same as straight missile except you can aim it at any direction instead of limited to "straight ahead".
Sticky Missile is basically seeking missile. It turns and tries to go after the closest enemy. However, the operative word is TRIES. It doesn't always go after the one you want.
The relatively large refire delay in missiles means you have to dodge enemy shots between your shots. A loop is often useful, as is an Immelman (discussed later)
Fireballs: High firing rate, negligible damage, lousy range
Pivotting Fireballs > Fireballs
This is like a very impressive looking cannon… Firing bazillion small rounds. Refire delay is minimal: more than 10 fireballs PER SECOND, but individually they do negligible damage.
Pivoting means you don't have to shoot where the nose is pointing.
This is even MORE of a newbie weapon than the cannon.
Throw Bombs: low firing rate, large damage, great range *
My favorite weapon, as it allow you to shoot enemies WAY off in the distance if you got the altitude. The bombs go a long way, and refire delay is pretty low (as fast as triple cannon). Damage is very good, as I've seen one or two hits taking out a plane.
The problem is you can only shoot off to the sides, esp. if you use a heli / VTOL. And since bombs fall, you almost have to be above the enemy if you need the range.
Laser: Extremely low firing rate, average damage (if you can track the target), incredible range
Very hard to deploy due to a very narrow beam. If the enemy maneuvers, you will have to hard time keeping the beam on the enemy. So it basically acts like a big "shotgun" reaching all the way across the playing field.
The laser doesn't have "shock power" It doesn't kill enemy in only a few hits, unlike straight rockets or throw bombs. You need to keep the beam on the enemy for a little while to kill it, as it does knock them about somewhat. In heavy combat environment you will end up wounding a lot of enemies but scoring few if any knock-out blows.On the other hand, if you hit the enemy it may just knock the enemy up a little, may convince them to not hit you. Doesn't quite work on enemies that fly very fast, or toughly armored.
If you do not shoot the beam for the full 3? 4? seconds, you can re-fire immediately instead of the mandatory 2-second cool down delay.
The beam can reach ALL THE WAY ACROSS the board, even BEYOND the "radar" range. So you are basically trading power for range.
My favorite tactic is fly up then simply shoot beam down at enemies as needed, even across the board. Dodge the incoming enemies, stay on the opposite side of the map, and keep knocking them about.
For the easier levels laser gives you an easy time to score those x9 bonuses for "kill streaks" without getting hit in between. You don't even need to see the enemy. For the hard levels you can't dodge fast enough to matter.
There are 2 general types of planes in MiniSquadron (SE)
- helicopter (and VTOLs)
Airplane — nose actually points where you go, takes time to turn, can stall if you turn too fast.
One of the tricks you can perform with airplane is the Immelman: point up and shoot, climb above the enemy until you stall, turn nose down, and keep shooting.
The ability to "stall" means you can temporarily point your nose at a direction you are NOT travelling into, but if you stall too long you crash.
Airplane is generally faster, often MUCH faster than helis. Some airplanes go at 600+ MPH
Favorite Plane: The Count — sticky missiles. Go to the center of the field and loop, firing missiles at left and right, trying to get multiple missiles into the air at the same direction. If enemy comes, go up or down to dodge, perform Immelman. Have problems with enemies that are faster / more manueverable.
Helicopter / VTOLS — hovers, nose only points "left" or "right", can change direction instantly
Helicopters can dodge almost without moving much, as they can hover and just move up and down to dodge. On the other hand, this also means they have firing blindspots (unless they are also equipped with pivoting weapons)
The main problem with helis is their relatively low speed. Generally they top out at 300 MPH. There are a few exceptions, but those generally have relatively weak armor. VTOLs have better armor.
Favorite Heli: EcoWarrior — throw bombs. Climb to max altitude and start lobbing bombs somewhere toward the enemy. Often you can get a few kills before you even SEE the enemies. Have a bit of problem against fast enemies armed with rockets (they can chase you down), or those green laser VTOLs (dodging them and still killing them can be a problem)
Favorite Heli: Green Giant -- the green VTOL that shoots a green laser... Good for low threat environments, i.e. the first couple maps. If you "sweep" the map you can basically knock everybody back a bit until the enemies overwhelm you. In the last three maps there are too many enemies that are too tough for the lasers to kill quickly.
A Few Concluding Tips
Altitude, altitude, altitude!
In a plane, you can nose up, then down (perform an Immelman) to reverse directions quickly, but you need altitude.
Bounce off the Wall
The planes will 'bounce off' the sidewalls, giving you a way to do a quick reverse. Just fly directly into the edge and you'll get instant reverse.
Kill other planes by getting on their tail
Planes can only shoot straight ahead, in general, so if you get behind them, you can shoot them as much as you want, with a few exceptions, such as loop, overshoot, and such.
Kill other Helis / VTOLs by shooting them from above or below
Enemy Helis can instant reverse, so following them is not a good idea. Hit them from above or below would probably be best.
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