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Colonel Corazon Santiago

At a Glance:

  • +2 Morale
  • +1 Police
  • Free Prototyping
  • -1 Industry

You've got the all-around best, most balanced fighting force in the game. True, Miriam has an edge when attacking, but your bonus helps both attack and defense, and the free rover at game start really helps you if pod scattering is on, enabling you to pick up a larger than normal share of Unity Pods, and more intangibly, enabling you to build your bases with a better understanding of the map you're playing on (meaning simply that your bases will tend to be better arranged on the map, thanks to a more complete understanding of the continent as a whole....most people have to build their first few new bases somewhat blindly if they want to expand quickly, but this is not the case for you). Also, the Police bonus mitigates the effect of running Market, and enables you to forestall (or, depending on SE choices) do away almost entirely with drone control facilities, saving you time on infrastructure. The free prototyping is not a huge advantage until later on in the game, as all early protos can be completed with a single cashed-in supply crawler anyway, but it's still a marginal advantage, and should be exploited whenever the opportunity presents itself. The industry hit hurts, but no more so than Morgan's support drain, and you can get back to "normal" Industrial capacity by simply switching to Planned. True, you take an efficiency hit, but that in turn can be undone by building Children's Creches, rendering your negatives easily dealt with and gotten around. The Command Nexus is a very attractive project for you and you're pretty well suited to getting it, as it is only one tech away from you, and grabbing it will give you hands-down the best troops in the game until the advent of bio-enhancement centers, which will bring the rest up reasonably close to your troopers. The Spartans' main strength, though, lies in the fact that they need not necessarily make use of their army to instill fear. Just the simple knowledge that the Spartans are out there is oftentimes enough to give others pause.

Santiago, the Builder[edit]

It takes you slightly longer to get your infrastructure in place than the rest, but the police rating helps in that, again, you can delay the building of drone control facilities, and once you DO get the infrastructure built, it serves you just as well. In the meantime, you have seasoned troops to defend your holdings with, a thing that cannot often be said of other Builder factions. Because of this, and because it's common knowledge that the Spartans can more than hold their own in a fight, you are uniquely positioned to build in relative safety. Think of it as classic isolationism, and most Momentum folk are looking for soft targets, something the Spartans have never been accused of. Add to that the fact that most of your opponents will not be expecting you to play the Builder's game, and that alone can often buy you the time you need to get the bulk of your infrastructure in place. Once it is, it's a simple enough proposition to take a look around the map and reassess your current situation, and again, if somebody decides to play rough and tumble with you, then they're just asking to get pasted.

Santiago, the Hybrid[edit]

Your starting tech makes you a natural at this. You're only a single tech away from Doctrine: Flexibility, and only two away from running Planned and getting Probe Teams. Taken together, that alone puts you in a strong Hybrid stance (and if you get the Virtual World project, you will almost never have a drone problem). Others need to build command centers just to get to where your troops start, and because of that, most factions will think twice about attacking you, and with even a single Monolith someplace in your territory, and building a Command Center of your own, it's easy for you to put together a core force of elite troops to attack or defend with. You have normal cash and research rates, which means, thanks to a slightly lagging industry, that you might be a bit behind the curve, tech wise, but a bit of luck with pods (which, as mentioned, you have an advantage in getting) will easily balance that out, and oftentimes, those pods render your industrial lag moot, as they "auto-finish" whatever you were building at the closest base to the pod you just popped. All in all then, a Hybrid approach is very easy to play with Santiago.

Santiago, the Conqueror[edit]

This is probably the easiest way to run the Spartans, and it is a no-brainer, which also means, unfortunately, that this strategy can be predictable. You've already got rovers. It's a short hop to Impact weapons, and a short hop from there to global conquest. All of the speed work Velociryx has ever done on early transcendent victories has been with the Spartans, and with good reason. Quite simply, nobody can put together a crack attack force of high-morale Impact Rovers faster than Santiago. Zak might be able to get them about as quickly, but they still won't be as well trained, and in battle, that will be the telling difference, and in the early game, four rovers is about all you need to utterly lay waste to an enemy empire (Yang not withstanding, thanks to his Perimeter Defense network, but even then, a Probe action against the base in question can render his key defensive advantage useless). If you want a fast and furious game, build four Impact Rovers and send them hunting while you build up your empire. When they find someone, you'll be amazed at how much damage and terror they can spread, and at nominal cost to you.

An important footnote here is that with Santiago, you can do reasonably well at fighting without Punishment Spheres under Market conditions, thanks to your Police rating.