SPOILERS OF WAR - Tactics for Virgin's CANNON FODDER
by Jason Kapalka
Following are pointers to help you get through the first 12 missions.
General tips: become familiar with the mouse controls, so that you can
quickly twitch off a grenade or bazooka and then run for cover before
return fire is forthcoming. Note that you don't need to have the crosshairs
on an enemy grunt to hit him with gunfire. Beware chain-reaction
explosions, and watch the shadow of airborne shrapnel to see where it's
going to land. Don't waste grenades and bazookas on common foot-soldiers--
save 'em for bazookateers and enemy installations. Consider splitting off
one trooper to act as a scout in dangerous areas. And above all, remember
to save the game every time you finish a mission, but don't write over an
old slot if you've only got a few troops left--you may want to go back and
finish the mission more efficiently so you have more reinforcements
MISSION 1: The Sensible Initiation
If you need help with this one, maybe you're better off playing Pong and
Jai-Alai on your old Telstar home entertainment system.
MISSION 2: Onward Virgin Soldiers
Ditto. However, this is a good place to learn the dangers and advantages of
water. Troops in deep (dark blue) water cannot fire, so pick off swimming
enemies and avoid swimming yourself while there are better-grounded foes
MISSION 3: Antarctic Adventure
Pretty easy. Just make sure you don't shoot the grenade stockpiles, and
avoid running towards them until you're sure there are no enemies nearby;
one stray bullet into a stack of explosives and you can kiss your squad
MISSION 4: Super Smashing Namtastic
Phase 2: Pier Pressure
Note that all your soldiers now start off with two grenades. Use 'em.
Phase 3: Village People
The natives are harmless, unless you start shooting them, after which they
graduate to mostly harmless. Still, it gets annoying dodging their little
spears. Also note that not all buildings are enemy strongholds. Look for
the ones that have doors.
Phase 4: Quicksand
There's an unreachable barrel surrounded by quicksand--don't go for it.
Also in this level, the booby trap makes its first appearance: there's a
little white thing by the first quicksand patch. Stand back and shoot it.
DO NOT walk over it.
MISSION 5: Those Vicious Vikings
Phase 1: The Valley of Ice
An introduction to the bazookateer--your worst enemy. They can sometimes
blast you while out of sight; remember that you can scroll the view window
around by moving the pointer to the extreme edges of the screen.
Phase 2: Barmy Bazookas
At first, this phase may seem like a real canine of the feminine
persuasion. Time to brush up on your anti-bazooka tactics. There are two
classic techniques: 1) split off a single guy from your squad and have him
run straight at the bazookateer. Most of the time his missiles will explode
just behind you. Don't do this with a whole train of troopers or you'll
most definitely lose 'em. 2) Get good at bazooka-ing the bazookateer before
he bazookas YOU. It's wise to move your guy or guys immediately after
firing, just in case your target gets off a shot before his vaporization.
Phase 3: My Beautiful Skidoo
Your first vehicle. It takes a while to get the hang of driving, and watch
out for the bazookateer on the other side of the river. Note that you don't
have to kill all the enemy grunts in this mission; just destroy their
MISSION 6: Westward Ho
Phase 1: The Grand Canyon
The first time you try to cross that bridge, you're going to notice that
less troops arrive on the opposite side than started out. Notice the big
gaping holes in that there bridge? Delicate footwork is called for. There's
a pile of extra weapons behind a fence, but be careful not to blow them up-
-breach the fence from the western side.
Phase 2: Trigger Happy
You'll notice some of the houses are now disgorging black troopers who are
noticeably more aggressive than the usual variety. Blow up their houses
quickly. Ignore the bazookas perched on a very dangerous strip of cliff--
likewise ignore the hangar and other distractions. Your mission here is
just to blow up the enemy buildings.
MISSION 7: Greenland Redblood
Phase 1: The Slippery Stairway
This one's a pain until you get used to anti-bazooka tactics. Split off one
guy and use him to pick off the snipers, and keep moving at all times. Use
your own bazookas to take out the guys beyond rifle range. Be careful not
to waste too many grenades... there aren't very many lying around.
Phase 2: Return to Reykjavik
Not too tough. Stand away from the house in the enclosure when you blow it
up... the fence has a tendency to explode as well.
Phase 3: Evil Knievel
A massive pain. First, you have to get good at skidoo-jumping. Make sure
you hit the ramps squarely, or your skidoo will land on the tree-tops with
predictably explosive results. Next, you have to make it across a river
guarded on the other side by multiple bazookateers. Finally, you have to
destroy the enemy houses--the igloo's theirs too--without harming the lone
Eskimo wandering about. Be very careful where you toss your grenades.
MISSION 8: Guerilla Warfare
Phase 1: Have a Nice Trip
Your introduction to pungee sticks. You'll know 'em when you see'em. If you
look closely, you can sometimes see a tiny hole in the ground where the
trap is; also, if you move very slowly, you can sometimes set it off
without getting impaled.
Phase 2: Bang Bang You're Dead
You can't destroy the enemy bunkers with grenades or bazookas--only Big Gun
shells will do. Take out all the enemy bazookateers before jumping into the
turret, and jump out again to mow down grunts if you get surrounded. Or
position the rest of your squad nearby to lay down covering fire. DO NOT
fire the turret at point-blank range.
Phase 3: Deliverance
Pungee sticks and grenade traps galore. If you sidle south down the extreme
eastern edge of the map, you'll come to a small clearing with a big plant.
Blow up the plant and grab the heat-seeking missiles under it. These
missiles will fly right over obstacles. Also, if you follow the path north
of the enemy encampment, there's another plant concealing a power-up
that'll promote your lead guy to general.
Phase 4: Jeep Jump
There's no ramp to jump off, and jeeps don't have the suspension to handle
a four-storey drop. The key is to drive off the cliff on the eastern side
of the map that drops straight down into the water. Bail your guys out of
the jeep before it sinks. It's a good idea to kill the bazookateer on the
south side of the river before you try this little stunt.
MISSION 9: Great Scott Good Shot
Phase 1: Round the Garden
Running out of ammo is the real problem here. Be careful which houses you
destroy--many of them are empty and harmless. One tactic is to get the
turrets to blow up houses for you, but this is hazardous. It is, however, a
good idea to dispose of the enemy skidoo before you take your own out for a
spin, since the bad guy will try to pull a kamikaze run at you.
Phase 2: In at the Deep End
This is tricky. I had the most success by swimming north-east, blasting the
first turret from the tiny island, then zig-zagging my way onto the
mainland and grenading the second. Pick up the bazookas and dispose of the
far western turret; the one next to it is empty, and you can use it to blow
up the bunker and the other two Big Guns. Next, swim south. Lure the enemy
grunts away from the island, then swim to it and pick them off. Use
bazookas to take out the nearest two turrets, then make a mad dash at the
last two with grenades a'flyin'.
MISSION 10: One Gigantic Dust Bowl
Phase 1: The Square Dance
The grunts start to get much meaner now, particularly the ones disgorged by
the chopper, which can only be destroyed while it's on the ground. The
tactic that worked best for me here was to split off one trooper with 4
bazookas, then to run him clockwise around the enclosure, blasting all 4
houses before getting overwhelmed by the grunts. Bring in the rest of the
squad to mop up.
Phase 2: Penny for the Guy
Move fast when you enter this level, or you'll be eating high-explosive
artillery shells. Send one guy back west to take out the houses, and be
careful crossing the bridge, which is trapped with pungee sticks.
Phase 3: Tanky in the Middle
Don't bother trying to kill the tank or the various turrets. Blow up the
two houses to the east, then pile into your jeep, make the two ramp jumps
north, hop out and blow the remaining two houses. Watch out for the
Phase 4: If It Moves, Kill It
A real nightmare. The trickiest bit is destroying the bunker--try to get
the tank to blast it for you. Hide your squad in a corner, split off one
guy, and have him make a suicide run up the center, hopefully taking out
the cluster of bazookateers and turrets. Remember, you don't have to kill
everything, just the enemy houses, so focus your efforts to this end.
Phase 5: A Good Hard Tank
You start out right next to an enemy turret, and unless you're very lucky
you're going to lose a few guys right off the bat. If you try to fight man-
to-man you'll get swamped; head north along the western edge of the map and
you'll find your first tank. The tank is immune to anything less than an
artillery shell, so ignore the grunts and focus on taking out the turrets,
and then you can blast the enemy houses at your leisure.
MISSION 11: Jungle More Jungle
Phase 1: Lord of the Flies
Nothing you haven't seen before here, except that many of the enemy grunts
will now leap out at you from ambush. Watch the foliage carefully and don't
let them sneak up.
Phase 2: Whopper Chopper
This can be difficult. The enemy chopper will drop bombs on your troopers,
so run like hell if it starts to hover overhead, and try to get to your
tank in the south-west corner as quickly as possible. To rescue the
civilian, you have to blow up the barricade with a tank shell (watch you
don't kill the civ while doing this) and then make sure he gets back to his
hut in the south-east. He's not exactly grateful and will continue to chuck
spears at his liberators, so it's probably a good idea to stay in your
tank. It's an even better idea to "kill all enemy" before you free him.
Phase 3: Donkeytastic
Your first chopper is in a clearing to the southwest of your starting
position, but first you better take out the enemy helicopter. Walk west to
the crossbones landing pad, stand back and wait for the chopper to land. As
soon as it does, blast it with a bazooka. Then get your own chopper and
take out the enemy turrets.
MISSION 12: Chiller Thriller Killer
Phase 1: An Icicle Made for Two
The key here is to get to your tank (located in the SE corner of the map)
real quick, or the bomber chopper will annihilate you. Try to snuff the
enemy skidoo with a bazooka as soon as it appears on screen, before it
starts to move.
Phase 2: Tank You Very Much
The tricky part here is getting across the ocean to the northernmost enemy
plateau. It's a good idea to split off one of your guys and use him as a
decoy to draw fire from the bazookateer on the plateau... position yourself
so that the sniper blows up the wooden blockade on the upward trail. With
your next guy, just swim right up to the land, then swiftly mow down all
the surrounding enemies.
Phase 3: Death and Glory
Not too tough. Get the chopper on the island to the NE of your starting
position, fly it over the wall to the south, land, get out, go get your
tank, which can blow up the barricade. There's a jeep way up in the NE
corner, but you don't really need it.
Phase 4: North Face of the Eiger
Make sure you've taken out ALL the enemy turrets before you try to get in
your chopper. Fly to the top of the mountain. There's a bulletproof vest
hidden inside one of the snowmen. Don't worry about driving your tank off
cliffs--the thing is Dam Tuff, as they say.
Phase 5: Rescue El Presidente
First hostage mission. Send one guy down south to jump in the turret and
take out the enemy tank... odds are good the tank will nuke him even as he
fires. Blast your way to the helicopter, but don't bother trying to land on
the island with the hostage yet. Swim over and eliminate all the enemies
first. Be REAL careful not to smoke the hostage. Once it's clear, land the
chopper on top of the hostage. He'll hop in, and all you have to do is fly
to the little tent in the SW. Walk over to it and the hostage will follow
Phase 6: Chill Out Iceman
Get ready for some major frustration. It seems there's a minor bug in this
phase--or maybe just a really bizarre "feature." In any case, the enemy
helicopter will often end up hovering over the small island in the SE
forever. It will not land, and cannot (apparently) be destroyed. If this
happens, you might as well surrender and try again.
The only way I found to deal with the enemy chopper was to send a guy into
the turret located on top of the factory right at the beginning of the
phase. Wait for the chopper to land nearby and toast it.
What are those three green circles for, you ask? Well, split your men into
three groups, have one stand on each circle simultaneously, and you'll find
out. Too bad the bug--er, feature usually renders this little tactic
And how to kill the factory? Try a dozen or so shells from the turret on
top of it. Just be careful not to blow yourself up--aim for the doorway.
Good luck with the next twelve missions. They don't exactly get easier...
This article is Copyright (C) 1994 by Jason Kapalka for Game Bytes
Magazine. All rights reserved.