=======================================================================


FRONT MISSION 3
Strategy Guide ver. 0.4
by: Muhammad Guiam a.k.a. "WZR FREAK Mk113" or simply "Wanzerfreak"

FRONT MISSION 3 - copyright 2000 by Squaresoft


=======================================================================



Introduction:


Um....i'm not good with introductions so i must keep this short. This
strategyguide/FAQ/whatever you call it, should contain stuff that you won't
usually find in the game's manual or in other strategy guides. If you are
reading this now, i must assume that you already know most of the basic stuff
regarding the game (i.e. battle skills, weapon skill levels, the "network" and
so on) or have finished the game at least once.

BTW, this is my very first FAQ.

=======================================================================

 Contents of this guide:


1. Version History
2. Character Classes(Controversial!!!)
3. Secrets - Alternative way of getting the Hoshun Mk112 wanzer, Getting all
Desktop tools, Simulators Maps and Simulator modes and more
4. Recommended Skill Setups
5. Advanced Tactics
6. "Hybrid Theory" - Custom Wanzer designs by Front Mission 3 vets
7. FM3 Stuff - just some bits of helpful info that do not belong in other
sections
8. Legal Stuff
9. How to contact me
10. Credits




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1. Version History

03/12/2003

Version 0.2

-Added a few more stuff on Sections 4 and 5
-Re-ordered Sections 4 and 5
-Corrected a few errors
-Made minor changes with the format


04/01/2003

Version 0.3

-Added "Two Ways of aquiring Yun" in Section 3
-Added "Japan's Most Wanted" In Section 3
-Added "Blue Thunder" in Section 6
-Added "FM3 Stuff" as Section 7
-More Stuff on Rifles


04/24/2003

Version 0.4

-Changed "E-mail" Policy to "How to Contact Me"
-Added more stuff in Section 5-B
-Corrected a few errors
-Zoom Skills work with any weapon except grenades, so that means they work with
melee weapons.


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2. Character Specialization or Character "Classes"

I've read the FAQs and all of them have contradicting information on exactly
what weapons did the characters specialize with. Some FAQs tell you "emma
actually prefers machineguns blah blah blah" and so on. So i consulted the some
of the vets of GameFaqs' FM3 message board. During that time, we did some
testing ourselves and compared our results but one person 'emeraldweapon' stood
out. His results were more accurate. Initially, this stirred up a lot of
controversy because there were still others who have played the game so long
had other opinions. Despite that, emeraldweapon's initial "character
specialization" list proved them wrong. Further testing refined the "list"
using his method.



The characters go in "classes" according to the "weapon group" they specialize
in. First let's talk about the weapon group. Weapons go in groups or categories
depending on their characteristics. They are:

Melee - fists/knuckles, spikes, batons and the "Hard"blow
Burst - fires more than one shot. machineguns, shotguns and flamethrowers all
belong to this group
"One-shot"(as the game puts it. can't argue with that.)  - as the name implies,
these are weapons that fire only one shot. weapons that belong to this group
are rifles, cannons, and the experimental beam gun thingy
"artillery" - i don't now anything else that would suit this weapon group so i
call it "artillery". basically, these are your heavy shoulder weapons - missile
and grenade launchers.




Here's the refined list of the characters according to their specialties, i'll
explain later....

"Fighter(Melee)" Class - specializes with all Melee weapons

Kazuki
Marcus
Pham

"Infantry" Class - specializes with all burst weapons

Ryogo
Yun
Li
Lan

"Sniper" Class - specializes with all one-shot weapons

Dennis
Liu
Jose
*Miho*


"Fire Support"  Class - specializes with missiles and grenades

Emma
Alisa
Mayer
Linny



Here's the explaination....

the first thing that you should know about what a certain character's weapon(s)
of choice is his/her attack power. what the hell is "attack power", you ask?
it's the amount of damage a character can deal with a specific weapon. it is
displayed(during battle) as a numerical value below the small weapon icon
either in the middle upper or lower part or the screen. here's an example:


                (weapon icon here)

                    35x10     <-------------this is your attack power


in this case i used a machinegun type weapon(burst, 10 shots) . the value 35x10
means 35 is amount of damage for each of the 10 shots.


please note that damage is actually not fixed. it can be randomly a few points
more or less during an attack. it works like the special plus/minus system in
StarCraft, as far as i can remember. there's another thing that you must
consider: the weapon skill level. i'm sure you already know about this, but in
case you still don't or you just happen to forget just remember that the higher
it is, the more damage you can do.


when i say "specialize" or anything that goes like "weapon(s) of choice" i mean
a character produces the highest/strongest attack power with ALL weapons that
belong to a certain weapon group and NOT a specific type of weapon(i.e.
machinegun, shotgun, fist etc.), compared to another who doesn't specialize
with the same weapon group as he/she does provided that they have EXACTLY the
same weapon skill level with all the weapons that belong to that group.

i'll use the Franbar FF rifle and the very first weapon skill level as
examples(based on the characters' actual specialties):


liu's attack power at level A - 116x1
kazuki's attack power at the same level - 110x1


see the difference? if you use the same method with other weapons or weapon
groups you will see differences in attack power. from that example, liu is
clearly a "sniper".

basically, the method is just simply a process of comparing a character's
attack power, with a certain weapon, to another character.

there are exceptions to the "attack power" rule. one is regardless of
specialty, all characters will produce the same attack power with any weapon
when their weapon skill levels reach lvl. "S". two, battle skill activation was
not taken into consideration because they activate randomly.


About Miho:

We all know that she starts with the same setup as Kazuki(melee&shotgun).
Public opinion says she specializes with machineguns but the truth is she is
actually a "sniper". i used the same method in figuring out what weapon group
she specilized with and after a thorough testing, she produced the exact same
results with any "sniper" character. case closed.


*side note: This whole "character specialization" sounds like your "job system"
or "character class" in most rpg's. Not that i'm complaining, i just think that
the new character development system allows you to customize a character
regardless of his/her specialty as opposed to the previous installments of
Front Mission. I don't think it's a bad thing either. It suits this game
perfectly.



=======================================================================

3. Secrets - The Hoshun Mk112 Wanzer, Getting all Desktop Tools, all Simulator
Maps, Simulator Modes and more


A. Fight the Hoshun Mk112!


This is the secret wanzer of FM3. You can aquire it by dialing 555XKR224 in the
Inferno Dialer option of Lawspite, the australian spender's site(AUSPEND) once
you got past Mission 57(Taradake Observatory) in Emma's storyline, or Mission
46(Nishikoriyama Entrance) in Alisa's Storyline. There's an alternative way to
have it and here it goes:


Get 40 or less(one claimed that he only had 38 or something lower, and another
one had only 35) platinum medals before the missions mentioned above and it
will appear in those missions as an additional enemy unit.

*news: i deliberately aquired 35 platinums before each of those two missions on
my recent replay(both storylines). the hoshun appeared as expected.

I can tell you three ways to capture the wanzer. One is to make the pilot
surrender. Two, use Eject Punch and kill him. Three, use any PilotDmg skills. I
prefer the second option because it's easier. Anyway, the best thing about
capturing it is not only does it come with heavy p-gun, it's already upgraded!
Plus, you get a free item backpack. In the words of Laguna Loire(FF8),
"Nothing's cheaper than something free".

Once you've done the 40 platinum "mini-quest", check your Nanjing City
simulator and set it to Real Battle Mode. There will be another enemy unit.
It's the big-ass Heidong 3 that you've fought in Nanjing City. If you've
finished Alisa's storyline, you know what i'm talking about. The funny thing is
that the Imaginary number units here don't have any booster and evasion
upgrades like they used to. The Heidong 3 gives you 100+ EXP per attack and
900-1000+ EXP when destroyed. Now, use your EXP multiplier skills and you'll
max out your weapon skill levels very quickly!

*more news: if you got 35 platinums, get 5 more in order to make the Heidong 3
appear on your Nanjing City simulator.





B. Geting all simulator maps - to get them, you can download them from some
websites or by talking to certain people. i will tell you how to get them all:




B.1 In Emma's storyline:


JDF Facility - you already have it in the beggining

Shin-Ohgishima Bridge - Remember the mission where that USN plane you used to
get away from japan took off? Well, this is it. Download it from the Japan NTJ
website after that mission.

Taal Base - Get from the USN carrier's communications operator after the Taal
Base raid

Taipei Suburb - Talk to Huang the VERY first time you meet him. That's after
the mission where you fought 4 Qibing 0's in Futai Tunnel. He will give you
this and tell you to get some rest.


Offshore Oilrig - Talk to Zhuwen after you've captured Wuhan Base.

Nanjing City Simulator - Talk to Takiguchi after the Nagahama Harbor mission.


Fukushima - Also known as the Nishikoriyama Highrise Apartment Project. This is
the toughest simulator. It's also one of the missions in Alisa's storyline. You
can download it from the Japan NTJ website by typing in SINTJ as your password.
You can actually get it as early as you can have access to the network.



B.2 In Alisa's storyline:

JDF Test Facility  - DUH!

Shin-Ohgishima Bridge - You can get after you left Japan or probably earlier.
Download it from the NTJ website

Taal Base - Talk to Ambassador Clay in the Bar in Taipei.

Taipei Suburb - Talk to Commander Kou in Wan'an Base while you're in DHZ.

Offshore Oilrig - Talk to the communications operator of the Shanghai Naval
Base after the Nanjing City mission.

Nanjing Simulator - Talk to Takiguchi before the Nagoya Sewer missions.

Fukushima - same way you get it in Emma's storyline.



C. Downloading stuff

note: you will usually pay credits if you wanna download something from certain
websites in the network



C.1 Simulator Levels



Test Mode - you already have it

Training Mode - Go to the Japan Police Organization website and check the
Mission Statement option. It will give you the address to Iguchi Corporation.
Go to Iguhi Corporation's website and dowload it.

Real Battle Mode - Get it from the Papel Corporation website. You will
encounter Jose Astrada in Taal Base, destroy his wanzer to get the address.
That's how you get it in Emma's Storyline.


To get it in Alisa's storyline, talk to the Davao City shopkeeper before
leaving the city for the next mission. He will tell you the address. This is
the only way to get it in Alisa's storyline so make sure you won't miss this
one.  Also, If you don't want to miss the Jade Metal Lyman Corporation webiste,
go to the Bar first  before you go to the Shop and talk to the Saleswoman. She
will tell you the address.



C.2 Desktop Tools




Kaleidoscope - You will recieve e-mail from the Armored Kinkakuji Wesbite. It
contains their address. Go to their website and check BBS1. There's a message
posted there that contains the address to NetComSys. Go to NetComSys and
download the tool.


Code Security 21 - This is an Encryption tool.

*In emma's storyline, you can download it from the Armored Kinkakuji website.

*In alisa's*
Download it from AUSPEND


UnderCover - A tool that decrypts encrypted files.

*In Emma's storyline*
Once you've reached Nanjing, go to the Bar and talk to the Patriot. He will
give you the address of the DHZ spenders' website - NEWS. go there and download
it

*In Alisa's storyline*
You can download it from the Armored Kinkakuji website.


No Weight Lifting - Unlocks password-protected files.
*In Emma's storyline*
Emma will recieve e-mail from AUSPEND after the Wilson Cliffs mission. it
contains the address to their site. Go there and download the tool.

*In Alisa's storyline*
Mayer will recieve e-mail from his dad later in game. He tells you the address
to the AUSPEND website. Go there and download the tool.


Yahan Q - Compresses and Decompresses files. Download it from Twin Tiger
Software. You'll find the address of TT Soft in one of the messages in the BBS
of the DHZ spenders' website - NEWS.  To get the address of the spender site:

*In Emma's Storyline*
Once you've reached Nanjing, go to the bar and talk to the "Patriot". He will
give this to you

*In Alisa's Storyline*
In Shanghai, talk to the "Gossip" after the Nanjing City mission.


Restrex - Re-arranges scrambled text. Download it from Papel Corp. website

Picaresque - Zooms in on picture files.
*In Emma's*
Download it from Psynamic Software Corp. website. To get their address, go to
the FIA website. Select the Internal Database option and type in IAF001 as your
password. A menu that contains information about MIDAS will pop up. Select "The
Origin of MIDAS". It tells you where MIDAS was created and the network address
of that facility. Go the facility's website. Enter their Internal Database and
type in SURSLN. Once inside, read all the branch directors' E-mail. You'll also
find the address of a USN spender's site there.



*In Alisa's*
Download it from the N.E.W.S. website. it's the DHZ's hacker's site. Do not
confuse it with the Da Han Daily website.



D. Two ways of aquiring Yun (Emma's Storyline only)

On your search for MIDAS, your party somehow found a way to sneak deep into OCU
Australia without getting their plane shot down by surface-to-air missiles
(hehehehe). On route to the secret OCU facility in the desert, you'll encounter
a strange hover transport escorted by three or four wanzers.


Destroying the transport vehicle or not will determine when Yun a.k.a.
"Moneymaker" will join you. If you want to get her early so you can use her for
the Taal Base raid, then destroy the transport before it leaves the map. Once
you did, you will get a cutscene where your party talks to its passengers after
the mission is over. One of the passengers is Serov. He seems to be cooperative
and tells you the whereabouts of a certain shipment. You will fight him soon
once your in DHZ. Anyway, your party follows Serov's lead and it brings you to
Sumatra. There will be a battle there between the local guerillas who are
defending something and OCU forces that are ordered to retrieve it. After that
mission is over, you'll talk to this guy called "Hatta" who happens to be their
   leader. He'll take you to OCU Singapore and there you will meet Moneymaker.
She will join your party when you leave the country.


If you did not destroy the transport, you will go to a certain town in
Indonesia called "Palopo" where it's rumored that MIDAS was taken there.
Actually, there is no MIDAS but you will encounter this bunch of crazy people.
They are the Barilar Family. You will see Barden, the head of Barilar Corp.,
bragging about his latest invention, the Methane WZR, that runs on Methane Gas
refined from RAW ANIMAL MANURE(YYYUUUUCCKKK!!!!!). Added to the mix of nutcases
is Pham Luis - who happens to be his niece(!), and Pierre - the Luis family
butler who goes where Pham goes, like a bodyguard. BTW, Pham is a playable
character in Alisa's storyline.


After you've taken care of them, the next mission brings you to somewhere in
Thailand, another OCU test facility perhaps. Here, you'll meet Serov. This
time, he's not as cooperative as he used to be. Be careful, he's piloting a
mean wanzer. Complete the mission and watch the following cutscene. After that,
you'll head back to the USN carrier. You will not get Yun until you're in DHZ.
And that mean wanzer Serov was piloting? It will re-appear in DHZ (Yikes!).



So what are other differences aside from which point in the game you get
Moneymaker? Hmmmm.... I believe that fighting Serov in DHZ made more sense to
the story than fighting him in OCU Thailand. That's just my opinion, though.




E. Japan's Most Wanted


Japan Police Organization has put up a list of Wanted and Missing people on
their site. They promise a reward(yeah, a measly three-digits that is! >|< )
for information on the whereabouts of these people that you send via e-mail.
You have to visit their site first to get their e-mail address. To know the
whereabouts of those people, you have to meet them in person or know about
their location by reading the character's e-mails sent by their friends. Here's
the list of the Missing or Wanted people that you can locate for Emma's and
Alisa's storyline:


Emma's storyline:


-under construction-


Alisa's storyline:


Yoshihisa Ushihisa (nice name :D) - Ryogo gets e-mail from his teacher at
Yokosuka Technical Institute, Ms. Hasegawa. She tells him how hot the weather
is in Okinawa(obviously, since it's sooo far south) and there's a man named
Yoshihisa Ushisa staying at a hotel. After reading the message, contact JPO by
sending them an e-mail. Expect a reward soon.

Kazushi Takahashi - After the Tianlei missions, Commander Jiu decides to drop
you off at Wuhan and arranges a transport for you there to get to Shanghai. Go
to the bar after you've visited the shop or likewise and you'll find him there.
Talk to the "Ganster". After the short dialouge, contact JPO immediately.


Masami Yokohama - After the last mission in Fukushima, Liu will start one of
his tantrums about how your party is not good enough to beat Lukav. He'll head
to the bar and Mayer goes after him. After a few dialogues you can go back to
the bar and talk to the "Drunk". She'll try to con Liu by pretending she's his
long lost sister(nice try, but is it good enough?). She'll leave afterward and
the bartender actually buys her story(she told him his brother will pay for the
drink) and asks poor Liu to pay up (Gotcha!). Anyway, contact JPO.

Takashi Kishi - Alisa will get mail from a certain "Dr. K" after winning the
Miss Teihoku contest. He says he is her biggest fan, among other stuff(that big
pervert). Miho will tell her to ignore him. What the heck? Reply, dammit!
Select the "Thank You" meesage instead of "I'm sorry". After a while, Dr. K
will reply. He reveals his real name and that he's actually a dentist!(reminds
me of that horror movie series, creepy!) Now go and contact JPO. 600 credits
may not be much but it helps!


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4. Recommended Skills Setups

Here are some setups that are used and considered effective by the FM3 vets of
the GameFAQs FM3 messageboard. However, how you play the game depends on YOU.
this is just to give you some hints on what skills you should use. Now I don't
want this to be too in-depth(like stating a specific weapon or part), i just
want to give you general setups. There could be battle skills here that you
haven't learned yet so you may use a B.Skill FAQ for reference.



Before we proceed, there are some things you must consider:


*Combo*

When a skill activates one after another consecutively during an attack is
called a "combo". Also, placing the skills in a certain order should produce a
noticable combo pattern. This led me to a conclusion that there are probably
tons of patterns out there waiting for us to discover! Please e-mail me if you
found one, or two.


*COM, short for "computer"*

You may call it the wanzer's 'battle computer'. skills must be equipped to this
thing so you can use them in battle. there are four kinds of COMs:

type 1: the normal, general-purpose COM - for skills that only consume one or
two slots. These COMs range from four to six slots. no special features.

type 2: the low/med/high activate% INCREASE(indicated by a green arrow pointing
up)-low/med/high combo% DECREASE(red arrow pointing down) -the more slots a
skill consumes, the less it's chances are to activate. that's why skills that
consume more than one slot require a COM that increases their chances of
activation. these types of skills usually do so much damage by themselves, so
combos aren't needed.

type 3: the low/med/high activate% DECREASE-low/med/high combo% INCREASE -
notice that it decreases activation in favor of combos? skills will rarely
activate but once they do, expect to see a lot of fireworks because it
increases the chance of a skill to link with another. However, they aren't
reliable. General-purpose COMs do the job just fine so use them instead of this
type.

type 4: the Aquire% Up COM. there's only one of it's kind. it's called COMG10.
It's like a normal six-slot COM but it has a special feature - it increases
your chances of learning a skill. Another very unique feature is that during
the moment you learn a skill, any skill that is equipped has a high chance to
link with the currently-learned skill causing a devastating combo.



*Multiple Weapons*

Anyone would be initially tempted to cram different types of weapons on a
wanzer. Let's say you have a melee weapon, a ranged weapon, and a missile
launcher - a typical Armored Core-ish setup. Sure you can hit enemies from long
range with a missile, but your not be able to do it effectively due to the
wieght limitations - this leaves you using a lighter and less powerful missile,
you don't have the right skills for that weapon, or you used lighter arms that
have poor accuracy. And you won't be able to do effective melee or ranged
attacks because of the same reasons above. WildWanzer10 says, "Not anyone needs
missiles or anything, just the characters who start with them" or something
like that. He made a good point, indeed.


Dbl Assault can be devastating but you can only use it within melee range. if
you loaded you COM with melee skills to pair with it then you won't be able to
use your ranged weapon effectively against something like a very agile,
machinegun-totting Jinyo Mk110, limiting the use of your ranged weapon to just
finishing off a weakened wanzer. In that case, you're better of with the melee
weapon instead.


Any vet would suggest an ideal setup would be usually one weapon and a shield.
One weapon should be enough to do serious damage with the right skills of
course, but there are skills that let you use two weapons that share some
similar characteristics like Dbl ShotI and II for ranged weapons(guns,
specifically), Dbl Punch I and II for melee weapons, Dbl Assault for melee and
ranged, and ShieldAtkI, II and III for melee with sheild(a melee weapon is
required for this skill). Those are the only skills that lets you attack with
different weapons effectively.


*Learnt Skills*

It's best that you learn as much usefull skills as possible just before you
proceed with the final battle. Once you do, you can use them right at the very
early part of the game where you can access the "Setup" option for the first
time.


and finnally,


*Luck*

No, it's not a stat! i'm talking about you - The Reader. Let me remind you that
skill activation and combos are all *RANDOM*. Even if there are COMs that
increase their chances, it's sad to say that it still depends on YOUR luck.


okay, let's proceed....




A. melee+shotgun b.skill setup

Kazuki, the main character, starts with this setup. only two wanzers were
originally designed for a melee+shotgun setup. they are the Zenislev and the
Qibing 0. If you really insist on keeping that setup from the beginning until
final battle, these skill setups should be helpful.

#1

load your normal four, five, or six slot COM with Skill+1ups


or you can add Brace1 or Ap-30% or any initial skill(certain skills that always
go first) on the first slot then Toppleshot, PanicShot, Stun Punch, Eject Punch
on the last slot etc. Those skills are good for reducing damage, infilicting
status ailments on your enemies or capturing their wanzers.

skill+1, 2, and 3up are one of those skills that can be used with all weapons
except grenade, only Skill+1up is more useful. the idea here is to maximize the
use of both melee and ranged weapons. basically, with this setup kazuki can do
extra attacks with the shotgun from a safe distance or pound the enemy with the
melee weapon up close.

the only bummer with the skill ups is you can't use them when the weapon level
is already maxed (lvl. "S").

#2

same as above except with Zoom1's

this is just an alternative to previous setup, but not as useful though. the
problem with "zoom" skills is that they rarely activate when the accuracy
upgrades are already maxed . so it means this won't activate if your attacking
something really HUGE or the target's legs are destroyed(unless the arms that
you're using have poor accuracy). the idea is just to let him combo those
Zoom1s for more damage. Like "Skill ups", "zoom" skills will work with any
weapon except grenade. so it will still work with melee weapons.


#3

a normal six-slot COM or a COMG10

3xTackle1's or Melee1's
3xROFUP1's

this is just an alternative to those first two setups. (thanks to wildwanzer10
for the inspiration). only use this when weapon skill levels for both weapons
are maxed. anyway, you have three tackle'1s for the melee weapon and three
rofups for the shotgun but don't expect Tackle1 to link with ROFUP1 though.
they have different conditions, so it won't happen. The choice between tackle1
or melee1 depends on your taste. If you want more damage, pick melee1.


#4

a high activate%increase/high combo%decrease COM with

1xTackleIII or MeleeIII
1xROFUPIII or Aim-*part* or Dbl Assault


it's obvious that the more skills of a certain kind you equip, the better
chances for it to activate or to combo. But since this setup uses different
skills, (both of them are level 3 skills for that matter), they seldom
activate. Well, i guess you can say this is only just for looks. Only use this
if you maxed kazuki's melee and shotgun skill levels.



#5 -  by Cluster Lights



What I usually do is equip him with both, but favour more of the shotgun
skills. The balance is tough. The best I've done is up to a point of D-Class
Melee and E*** with the shotgun. That's not bad. Dbl Assault deals so much then
;).

With that in mind, I use skills which are good, but do not require huge amounts
of slots. What I mean is, I've put together this string before for balance:


Melee Support Skills: Eject Punch, TopplePunch

Shotgun Support Skills: ToppleShot, ROFUP1
            both: PilotDMG1


In this case, its balanced out. No fast attack, but toppleshot works, if I go
first ;). The main problem later on is, it becomes difficult for balance. And
the weight factor is also a biggy to balance all. E-Packs are there though.


B. melee&shield, one melee weapon, two melee weapons

During an attack, ranged weapons always go first before melee weapons. melee
attacks powerful but risky yet they are very much worth it as long as you have
the right stuff. As it is always said, the best defense is a good offense.
That's why there are skills like TopplePunch, Eject Punch and Stun Punch.

#1

use a normal six slot COM with:


3xMelee1 or Tackle1
3xShield Atk1

or

6xShield Atk1

5xShield Atk1 or Melee1 or Tacke1
1xStun Punch or Eject Punch


6xMeleeI

6xTackleI

1xBrace1
4xSheild Atk1
1xStun Punch or Eject Punch

The Shield Attack skills are the best melee skills in the game. with the right
equipment and you should be able to do 1000+ damage with just a Shield Atk1.
Someone in the FM3 message board claimed he did 1800+ with Shield AttackIII. It
may possible to do 2000+ with the right parts and weapons. If i'm gonna use
ShieldAtkI's, i would use three of them paired with three MeleeI or TackleI's.

As an example, i'll use a (pure)Lanze melee-type wanzer. The following
equipment will give you around 1700+ to 1800+ damage:

Backpack: BPT9MAX
Weapon L: Fatal Buster
Weapon R: Buckler(shield)

You'll see what i'm talking about if you try it yourself.


MeleeI and TackleI are your all-around melee skills. Most people will go for
several level 1 melee skills because you get to hit different parts if they
combo.


*Note on Shield Attack skills: You must have a melee weapon for this to
activate or to learn it, that includes the HardBlow. It cannot be learned or
activated if the shield arm is destroyed, so be careful.




#2

once you have a good activation% increase com you may want to try those
hard-hitting melee skills:

ShieldAtkIII
MeleeIII
TackleIII

You may try equpping two of a kind or a combination of both or just one of them
then pair it with a something like BraceII, Avoid-80, Dmg Fix 200 or 400,
TopplePunch, StunPunch, EjectPunch, etc. If you're gonna use Shield AtkIII, i
suggest you pair it with either MeleeIII or TackleIII. In case the shield arm
is destroyed, TackleIII or MeleeIII are there so you can still inflict heavy
damage.

In later missions, you will encounter enemies with very good def-c. the enemy's
def-c setting will vary so you may wanna try diffent melee weapons with
different damage classes - fists and clubs are impact weapons, spikes are
pierce weapons.

Dbl PunchI - attacks with both melee weapons of the same type
Dbl PunchII - attacks with different melee type weapons

i prefer Dbl PunchII since you attack with two different melee weapons, this
allows you to inflict both piercing and impact damage when equipped with a
spike and a fist/club.


If i ever wanna use two melee weapons, i would have either one of those Dbl
Punch skills paired with MeleeIII or TackleIII. In case one arm is destroyed, i
can still inflict damage with the good arm using MeleeIII or TackleIII. Dbl
Punch1 or 2  consumes only two slots so there's still room left for a skills
like Stunpunch, Ejectpunch, whichever i prefer.



C.  Flamethrowers

Flamethrowers are a bit difficult to master. instead of including them in the
machinegun and shotgun section, i made a separate one. here's what Cluster
Lights has to say:

Flamethrowers = Most difficult weapon to fully master.

In general, if you are going to be a dominant Flamethrower user, I tend to go
along with 7 bursts. No more than 7. 11 is way too much by the end. And heck,
the attack is still very damaging.



Good skills to use in junction to the flamethrower are:

ROFUPIII
Aim-*part*
FiringSquad
AP-60%
AP-30%
Dbl Shot 1 (dependent on set up)
Dbl Shot 2 (dependent on set up)
Toppleshot

Avoid __
Brace II

A flamethrower is VERY damaging. Most enemy wanzers have only one weapon: On
their arm. A successful 11-hit Aim Arm blast from a flamethrower will tear the
part to shreds. Likewise, with Aim-Body, you either weaken the enemy to the
point where a shotgun will eliminate the target. Or the enemy is already dead
;).

ROFUP skills are generally always useful for any type of burst weapon. I
actually prefer several ROFUPIs than ROFUPIII. But since you can't count on
combos and I always go with 7 bursts, ROFUP ensures I can get a full attack.

AP skills, are self explainatory. Flamethrowers use a LOT of AP. Generally,
using 11 blasts will leave with next to none to defend. If you use 7 and get AP
skills, you can save enough for defense with shields or counters.

Dbl shot skills are also great. Dbl Shot one is basically ROFUPIII that
consumes only two slots instead of three. But the downside to Dbl Shot1 is that
you can't have a shield. Plus, you have to accompisate for power needed to hold
the extra flamethrower. Dbl Shot II is excellent if you have a secondary ranged
weapon which uses less AP. A M.Gun or a Shotgun works surprising well. To
maximize hits, opt for Shotguns (which gives you 12). Plus, it's lighter.


*side note: when you have Dbl Shot II equipped attack with the shotgun first
instead of the flamethrower. when the skill activates, you will be only using 3
AP instead of 11! be sure to set your AP consumption to 11 while in the weapon
selection menu(holding down the square button). You can also do the same with
the Heavy P-gun.


Brace II works as well as Avoid __ as a defensive if you need it. Brace II is
charging with a Riot Shield ;). It reduces a lot of damage, downside is two
slots. Avoid skills are great, but most of the time, you have to opt for 80.
Especially, if you set the Def-C incorrectly. Toppleshot is great as well.
Offense and Defense at the exact same time.

And like always Zoom1 works wonders. the low accuracy of a flamethrower can be
backed up by a well placed Zoom 1. Zoom 1s are also very comboable skills to
have.

Ideal set ups? Its all up to your taste, Mix and match to see which
one works for you. I prefer to have the skill set of:

Toppleshot
ROFUP1x3
BraceII

Front Mission 3 is about custom designs. So make your own setup and see if it
works. Experiment is part of the fun.




D. Rifles

Most newbies will complain that rifles are such a difficult weapon to use
earlier in the game. in some cases, they even ditch this weapon and opt for a
machinegun instead. some even consider that *part*Smash skills are it's only
saving grace. I hope they realize soon that *part* smash skills aren't that
realiable in terms of activation even if you use the right COM. This section is
all about making the most out of rifles from the beginning until mid-game.

#1

Let's start with the basics. Zoom1 is a reliable skill from the beginning and
before the time you get level 3 accuracy upgrades(around mid-game). As i said
before, any Zoom skill is useless once you get better accuracy or aiming at
something big. Anyway, load your normal COM with these and that should give
your sniper extra shots on a combo plus improved accuracy and you can add
Toppleshot - like cluster lights said, offense and defense at the same time.

*side note 1: Toppleshot works on regular wanzers only. I would suggest
Panicshot if you know you're about to face non-wanzers in the next mission.

*side note 2: Do not attempt to use any *part* smash skills during mid-game
especially in Emma's storyline 'cuz the best COM for these types of skills
isn't available until very much later. That's why i never recommended them.
It's also obvious that anyone would use them later in the game.


#2

The best thing about Alisa's storyline is her wanzer - the Meledyne M1! why is
it so special? The legs teach you Skill+1up (my favorite) and the arms teach
you PanicShot - not as effective as Toppleshot but the "confuse" status can
last a couple of turns. unfortunately, you cannot purchase her wanzer in emma's
storyline and only kazuki and ryogo can carry over skills that can be learned
from it. if you still insist, you can use a gameshark  to give the other
characters in emma's storyline skill+1ups and Panicshots. be warned, crazy sh-t
happens when you use da shark!



load your COM with skill+1 ups and you can add either Toppleshot or Panicshot.
you can achieve the same effect as #1, more damage but  without improved
accuracy. that doesn't matter in alisa's storyline cuz you get better accuracy
upgrades early on. i've seen Liu and Miho do their thing with this setup -
seeing enemies at the recieving end of a 3-4, in some cases 5, skill+1up combos
during mid-game skirmishes many times convince me that rifles deserve some
respect. ^_^ I use this setup from the beginning until later, just before i
decide to max my snipers' rifle skill and,(unfortunately) start using those
*cough!* unreliable *Part* Smash skills.


#3 see "The Bloody Cockpit" in Advanced Tactics.




#4 "Ready! Aim! FIRE!!!!"

Three words you'd hear when someone is about to be executed by Firing Squad.
Well, what a coincidence! There's also a battle skill. Cool!

Before i go on, there's at least two things you should know about "ally
support" skills. First is that you will not learn or activate these when your
on counter-attack, and second is that you will also not learn or activate these
if the target can counter-attack you. The reason why i chose rifles for this
skill is because of it's range. Six squares should be enough to put you out of
reach of machineguns and shotguns, eliminating the threat of a counter-attack.


So why bother using FiringSquad with rifles, you ask? Well, the game's
description says "Calls two allies for ranged backup"(or something like that).
It's obvious what it means, but unlike Gangbeating it's easier to set-up
because of the rifle's long range! Another great thing about "ally support"
skills is that it allows the other characters to attack again before or after
they have finished their turn. This allows them to attack twice! It's like
you're Re-Act/Re-Move spell in other S/RPG's. ^_^


Use this when BodySmash seems boring to you.



See? Rifles aren't so bad after all.




F. Machineguns and Shotguns


These burst-type weapons are easy to work with. And probably the weapon types
you would mostly rely on. No need to get fancy here.


#1 Any skill that ends with a "1" - ROFUP1, Zoom1, Skill+1 up, blah, blah.
Combos with level 1 skills(one-slot) are actually more damaging than level 3
skills only if they combo.

explaination....

ROFUPIII - 2x Shots fired. Machineguns fire 10 shots, so

10 x 2 = 20

ROFUPI - 1.2x Shots fired.

10 x 1.2 = 12



in case a combo has occured....

3xROFUP1

10 x 1.2 = 12
10 x 1.2 = 12
10 x 1.2 = 12

total = 36!

see? i think you get the idea.


*side note:

i know hybrid users who would put a melee weapon on a machinegun-totting
wanzer. bad idea!


-machineguns are heavy, and consume more AP than shotguns
-because they are heavy, you would sacrifice heavier arms with better accuracy
for something ligher yet less accurate
-melee attacks are risky, ranged attacks are much safer. most of the time you
will find yourself using the machinegun instead of the melee weapon.


i suggest ditch the melee weapon and settle for a shield. your wanzer will last
much longer. if you want to pair a ranged weapon with a melee weapon, shotguns
are the best choice - lighter and less AP consumption.


#2 ROFUPIII or Aim-*part* - level 1 skills must rely on combos to be really
effective.  level 3 skills can be more reliable than level 1 skills only if you
use the right COM. I recommend that ROFUPIII should be used with machineguns
and shotguns and Aim*part* for flamethrowers.


#3 it's actually a good idea to pair a ranged weapon with another ranged weapon
especially if they both have different damage types(pierce, impact, fire)and
there are skills that allow both to be used at the same time. However, you are
sacrificing defense for offense. Anyway, I'm talking about Dbl ShotI -same
weapons, and Dbl ShotII -different weapons. A good skill setup with two ranged
weapons would be like:

1xROFUPIII or Aim-*part*
1xDbl ShotI or II

no need to explain further. if you can remember, it's just like one of my melee
setups. btw, there is still room for one more skill. toppleshot is my best
choice. i'll even let you in on something: Dbl Shot 1 with two shotguns or two
flamethrowers look really cool! See for yourself. And if you wanna go for
broke:

Dbl Shot I/II x 3 on a High activate% increase/High combo% decrease COM should
ensure it will activate most of the time. Fun, but risky. I like it!



F. Missiles

There are only a few skills that you can use effectively with Missiles. They
are Salvo, Zoom1, Skill+1up, and Panic Shot. Salvo seems to be arguably the
best missile skill. I could've included those powerful part*Smash skills but
they're just too unreliable to begin with.


#1 If you are playing Emma's storyline, you can use Zoom1 or PilotDmg1 earlier
in the game. Zoom1 increases accuracy a little but a combo should give you
extra shots and hopefully, they will hit home. Emma will most likely learn
PilotDmg1 before any other character since she starts with a Drake M2C wanzer.
PilotDmg1 may not be as effective as Zoom1 damage-wise but it hurts the enemy
pilot. Missiles take away 5 HP with PilotDmg1. 5x4 = 20. All pilots have 20 max
HP. 1 Dead Pilot = 1 free wanzer.....if you're lucky enough.


#2 Here's why i think Alisa is a better missiler than Emma:

Skill+1up

Now that skill speaks for itself. As i've said, this skill is exclusive to
Alisa's storyline only. Damage-wise, it's better than Zoom1 or PilotDmg1. It's
too bad Alisa can't learn Chaff though but there are other defensive skills
that you can pair with it, if you want variety. Hm... Panic Shot isn't a bad
choice.



#3 see "Missile Nut" in Advanced Tactics.



======================================================================

5. Advanced Tactics


A. Capturing Wanzers(the "barbaric" way, hehehe)

So you already know how to make an enemy pilot surrender. But if you're
ruthless, you should try some of these cruel tactics. Conscience DEFINITELY is
out of the question here ^_^. Note that Eject Punch and Pilot Dmg skills do not
work on some NPCs(Non-playable characters) like Lukav, the Centipede(a.k.a.
Wulong), Kuroi, Liu, and other special characters. However, all the Puple Haze
members including Dennis can be forced to eject like normal enemies. Have fun,
you barbarian!


#1 "Git Outta dat Wanzer!!!"

requirements:

two melee pilots equiped with the best high activation% increase COM with six
Eject Punch skills

two burst pilots equipped with a Machinegun using any burst skill, preferably
ROFUP1

a memory card battle save(optional)

it's best that the melee wanzers are not equipped with any weapon so there's no
risk in destroying enemy units by accident.



Okay, here's how you do it:

Save your battle first, then let the first melee pilot attack the nearest
wanzer. Here's where the battle save comes into play: If eject punch doesn't
activate, go back to the title screen without saving then re-load the battle
save. repeat until eject punch activates. Next, let your machingunner attack
the ejected pilot.

Ryogo: "DIE! DIE! DIE!"

(^_^)

If he/she doesn't kill the ejected pilot, re-load the battle save and do it
again. Repeat this until all enemy wanzers are captured. One last thing, do not
let your machingunners attack or counter-attack, again it's to avoid
accidentally destroying a wanzer you're about to capture.


#2 "The Bloody Cockpit"

requirements:

equip someone with a rifle and give him/her the following skill setup:

6xPilot DmgI on a normal COM

3xPilot DmgII on your best high activate% increase COM

2xPilot DmgIII on your best high activate% increase COM

*side note: Rifles and the Hvy P-gun does 7 damage to the pilot with Pilot
DmgI. Pilot DmgII does 9 and Pilot DmgIII does 11. I prefer the first and the
third setup.

a memory card battle save(optional)


Procedure:

Just keep on attacking until all enemy pilots die in the cockpit of their
respective wanzers. Use a a battle save if you want. It's best if you use the
weakest rifle so there's little risk in destroying the target.




B. Tricks

One cool feature of this game is the ability to save your game during a
mission. Imagine: if you aren't satisfied by one character's performance during
an attack, just go back to the title screen and reload your "battle save". You
can do it over and over again until your satisfied but it kills the suspense of
waiting for a skill to activate and it also ruins the fun factor. Just like
section 5-A, this is all about exploiting some of the game's unique features.



#1 "One Shot, One Kill" - by frber


The (in)famous Body Smash skill. This requires a battle save and and all pilots
with the skill equipped on the best high activate% increase COM. Make sure that
all of the pilots have met the conditions for Body Smash to activate. This time
a memory card save is not optional, it's REQUIRED.

Procedure:

Save your battle. Then attack. if Body Smash doesn't activate, re-load until it
does. Do the same on the next target. Repeat until the map is wiped clean of
bad guys. this may feel kinda cheating though....



#2 "Missile Nut"

Crazy people like me love the Salvo skill because it can either bring down a
full-HP wanzer or do major damage to one by launching ALL missiles. The best
thing about the skill is that it only consumes ONE slot on your COM!  The bad
part is that it's expensive - you may use up all your missile reloads. Some say
it's not dependable and one or two missiles will miss. BAH! That only happens
if you have an arm with low accuracy. One Salvo attack is enough to reduce
those pesky Lenghe 1's into scrap.

Requirements:

Equip your missile wanzer with the best missile launcher and backpack you have.
Load your backpack with missiles and none other. If your're a hybrid user
UNlike myself, then i do not recommend an arm with low accuracy.

Load your pilot's High activate% increase COM with Salvo skills. The more Salvo
skills you equip the more chances for it to activate. You may leave a slot or
two for other defensive skills that you prefer.

A battle save is optional for this one.


Procedure:


Attack. If it doesn't activate, reset and re-load the battle save. If it
activates and the target is not destroyed, then have someone to finish him off.

It's best that you deploy two "fire-support" characters. You can destroy two
wanzers or do major damage to both then finish 'em off on the first turn. On
the next turn, move one missiler right beside the other and reload him/her.
Once reloaded, attack and if it doesn't activate, reset and reload the battle
save. Do the same on the next turn.

Make sure you have a lots of missile reloads on your item inventory.



#3 "Double Smasher!" - by Cluster Lights

This trick is based on exploiting the added bonus of the COMG10: it has the
unique ability to, most of the time, link the newly learned skills to the ones
that are currently equipped!

So when you put Leg Smash on the COMG10 while you're learning Arm Smash,
chances are that when you learn Arm Smash, ***hopefully*** it should link with
Leg Smash. You can only do this once since you only learn one "smash" skill for
each type (bodysmash, arm smash, leg smash and random smash). Kinda pointless
waiting for it to happen in the actual missions but it certainly looks cool!




C. General Hints



#1 "Follow the Leader and the Seventh Square Blindness"

(nice title, eh?)

The first part of the title applies to both simulator and (in most cases) the
actual mission AI. During deployment you are asked to select 3-4 characters,
right? The first one that you've selected will be designated as the "leader".
Basically, the enemies will go after him/her most of the time. Once his/her
wanzer is destroyed they will go after the next one that you've selected during
deployement, and so on. As for the second part of the title, you may have
already read about it on other FAQs but i will remind you what it is just in
case. "Seventh Square Blindness" is the enemy's inability to "see" any of your
units until they are within a certain range. In most cases, seven squares. This
usually applies to simulator AI only. What does it have to do with the first
part? They are actually two different things. In the second part, the enemy
will only go after anyone who will come within a certain range regardless of
the "leader". Although in some cases, moving your leader right in the middle
where the enemies are will make them go after the leader and ignore the others.


#2 "The best defense is a good offense"

As said many times before, "the best defense is a good offense". Skills like
Eject Punch, Stun Punch, Topple Shot, Panic Shot, Topple Punch - use them.


#3 "Diamonds.... (cough!), I mean Wanzers, are forever...."

Shield + Body with excellent Def-C = a wanzer that will last longer and often
will still keep it's arms and legs during the entire skirmish.

The only thing that could go wrong with that equation is YOU, the player.
Choose wisely which enemy wanzer you will attack first. Keep in mind that melee
wanzers have high HP but are weak against ranged attacks since they can't
counter any wanzer that is one or more squares away, and wanzers armed with any
ranged weapon usually have low HP and therefore vulnerable to powerful melee
attacks. You should also consider your enemy's def-c. Attacking an enemy who's
def-c is set to the SAME damage type as your weapon is less effective.


#4 "Beware of the almighty 'Nade Launchah"


Grenades tend to be much more difficult to use than rifles and flamethrowers
because of many reasons: One, it hits ALL units within it's blast range, and
that includes allies. Therfore, it's takes time to setup an attack. Two, it
doesn't work battle skills. Three, it only has four shots. And four, poor
accuracy. Still, do not underestimate the power of the 'Nade Launcher - they
can be very dangerous if you are careless. Anyone who has encountered the
Centipede mercenaries (a.k.a. Wulong) have learned it the hard way.


Despite all that, you can actually exploit it's disadvantages. Since it hits
all units within it's blast range you can use it against enemies that are that
are clustered together. this allows you to hit multiple enemies at once. damage
will depend on how near/far the wanzer is to the center of it's "blast radius".
the further away a target is, the less damage it will take. Another unique
characteristic of the grenade launcher is that it is "indirect-fire"(like an
artillery weapon), meaning it COMPLETELY ignores your enemy's shields! Later in
the game you will usually encounter enemies equipped with tough shields. It's a
good idea to have one grenadier for that mission.


In summary, grenades are fun to use. If you plan on using them, make sure that
a character's grenade skill level is at least on par with his/her missile
skill. Like shotguns, grenades spread damage to all parts so it can also be
used to level up a character's AP.


#5 "Let's talk."

Talk to other people as much as possible, whether they're NPC's or extras cuz
some of them will give you something. It could be a website address or a
simulator map.




=======================================================================

6. Hybrid Theory


These are custom wanzer designs made of different parts. In other words,
"hybrids".


"The Macho Zenislev" ^_^

the problem with the Zenislev and the Qibing 0 is that both have only 894 arm
HP - for a fully offensive wanzer, that may not be enough. To solve this
problem i swapped it with Wude 3 arms. Wude 3 arms have exactly the same HP as
a Lenghe 1(a whopping 1000+) but better because it has 52% maximum accuracy -
around twice it's max accuracy! since melee arms are 5 'weight points' more
lighter than zenislev and qibing arms you should get an increase in melee
power. The Wude 3 arms should give the Zenislev a 'beefed up' look (hehehe). It
may look a bit goofy but with increased melee power and accuracy, it kicksimus
maximus assimus!



"Blue Thunder" - from Wen Yang


Here's what my old friend Wen calls "Blue Thunder":

Body: Tieqi 4
L  and R Arm: Wude 3
Legs: Tieqi 4(i did remember he used Kasel M2 legs though)


The Tieqi 4 torso provides excellent Def-C while having decent HP. As for the
arms, i'd recommend swapping one of them with a Shunwang 1 arm if you plan on
using a ranged weapon. Now you have a wanzer with more than enough power to
carry a shield, a melee weapon and backpack that has a capacity of six.




 -more designs coming soon-

=======================================================================

7. FM3 Stuff - helpful bits of info that do not belong in other Sections. I've
arranged them in a Q and A format, for now since this section is still under
development.


Q: What's this "No Grenades" and "No Shoulder Weapon"  about?

A: Apparently, the game doesn't give you the right information on some of the
skills' "Conditions". I'll try to explain...

"No grenades" doesn't mean that your wanzer must not be equipped with a grenade
launcher. What it really means is that you cannot use a grenade launcher to
learn or activate the said skill. Grenades don't use battle skills, by the way.

As for "No Shoulder Weapon", it means that a skill cannot be a learned or
activated using any shoulder weapon.



Q: Can i stock those huge-ass uberwanzer thingies?

A: No.


Q: Yo! Check this out: I killed Lukav in his big red wanzer using PilotDmg...

A: You used 'da shark! There's no way PilotDmg or EjectPunch will work against
him. Don't talk to me.


Q: I heard there's this Inferno Dialer Glitch. What is it?

A: You can only use the dialer once but somehow, this glitch allow to use it
twice, even more! I only heard this from other people. I have no proof so far
or have confirmed this yet. So don't try anything stupid like opening the CD
cover of your playstation during the dialing process or something.



A: What about this "Cloud Honshi" code?

Q: I remember entering "Cloud Honshi" as the main character's name once but
nothing special happened. I was supposed to get an extra cutscene where Kazuki
looks like Cloud from FF7 or something but i never seen it. Another false code,
i believe.





=======================================================================

8. Legal Stuff

This document is protected by the International Copyright Law. The contents of
this document should not be reproduced or altered in any form or posted in
other websites without the author's permission.

This document is free and it must not be used for profitable purposes such as
promitions, endorsements, or any of such nature.


Got it? Good. >|<

The latest version of this faq can be found only at www.gamefaqs.com



=======================================================================

9. How to contact me

Since this guide is in it's early stage of development i would accept
suggestions and contributions. I will also answer any questions related to this
document.

I can be contacted by two means:

1. e-mail me at wanzerfreak@yahoo.com

2. post at Gamefaqs' Front Mission 3 message board.


Any obscenities(like insults or threats) will be ignored. Capiche?



=======================================================================

10. Credits


Cluster Lights
fber
Wen Yang
emeraldweapon
Wildwanzer10
all the old and new people of GameFaqs' Front Mission 3 message board
GameFaqs Staff, especially CjayC. He 'da man! Ai'ght?
Squaresoft

and Myself, of course!




=======================================================================

Final Words


Well, this is the end of this strategy guide and hope you enjoyed it. I heard
Squaresoft and Enix have merged. I wonder if they will allow the Front Mission
series to continue. Well, see 'ya around! Bye.



Front Mission Strategy Guide Project by Wanzerfreak started 2002


Front Mission 3 Strategy Guide Copyright 2002-2003