Offensive Combat Tactics

The side that stays within its fortifications is beaten. - Napoleon

Sometimes, your colony will be in a position where offensive combat operations are necessary. A belligerent may establish an outpost near your lands, necessitating battle outside your base. Training and effective command of your units are the keys to victory.


  • Offensive combat is primarily accomplished via secure position meta-orders. These order a military unit to take and hold a position. Unit personnel will automatically execute fire and movement maneuvers as necessary to neutralize any enemy personnel in the area.
  • Set fire orders can be used to burn enemy materiel. Large fires can be useful killing tools in their own right, but even small ones can create chaos as enemy forces prioritize fire fighting highly, even in the midst of combat.
  • Individual target kill orders can be used to direct fire at a particular target, but these orders will only be carried out by individuals. As such, they’re really only useful for hunting.

Necessity of Offensive Combat


A captured soldier of mine, summarily executed by the Iron Gear.

Some factions in the galaxy are not open to peaceful coexistence with yours. The Iron Gear, for example, is an omnicidal band of madmen bent on annihilating human life, so that it can be replaced by sentient robots and thinking computers. When a group like this establishes an outpost near your colony, they will behave aggressively and generally can’t be persuaded to stop by conventional means. They won’t stop until your population is wiped out, and in cases like this, it’s you or them.

Executing an Attack – Demo Walkthrough

When a nearby outpost needs to be attacked, the best way to accomplish this is by rallying your military units to a nearby location, then ordering them to secure the outpost’s area. Once the area is secured, you can then pillage, demolish, or burn down enemy installations to make sure they won’t be re-occupied by another group.

If you watch the demo video above, I first identify the outpost as belonging to the Iron Gear. They had recently executed a probing sort of attack on my outpost (you can see the corpse of their reconnaissance soldier just inside my colony’s walls later in the demo). I decide that they need to be wiped out immediately, so I order all 5 of my fire teams to secure a position just north of their location. By rallying the units to a safe point just outside the enemy position, all the troops can be together to execute the attack in unison.

To issue an order to secure a location, use the move unit tool, which becomes visible when the combat orders button is clicked.


The combat orders button.


The unit movement order button.

With this tool selected, click the location in the world that you want a unit to occupy. When you click, you’ll be presented with a unit selection dialog, which allows you to specify which unit you want to secure the chosen location.


When you’ve chosen a unit, they will move to the location and engage any enemies they encounter, according to your colony’s diplomacy policy and rules of engagement.

Once my fire teams are in position to the north of the enemy, I issue subsequent movement orders to secure positions in and around the Iron Gear outpost. My soldiers proceed in, catch the enemy completely off guard (they’re socializing and fooling around on datanet terminals), and the fight is a borderline massacre. In this case, I employed overwhelming numerical superiority, well trained troops, and tactical surprise to win an easy victory.

Once the base is secured, I set fire to parts of the buildings that can burn and aren’t valuable. To set fire to a location, use the fire order tool under the combat tools, and click the location you want burned.


Button for issuing orders to set fires. Soldiers equipped with lighters will carry out these orders.

Note that not everything can burn in Outer Colony. The Iron Gear structures themselves are comprised of concrete and metal, which by itself, won’t catch fire. I’m reduced to starting fires inside the buildings, burning items they contained to wreck the structures as a side effect. This is done to prevent another Iron Gear group from moving in and simply occupying these same structures. Finally, I issue tile demolition orders to retrieve valuable items from the enemy’s base, like their high quality manufacturing stations and furniture items that my colony is currently lacking.

Posted in Combat, NPCs, Simulation