Base Facilities (EU)

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There are several types of base facilities that you can place in your installations. Some of these are available from the beginning of the game, others are gained through research. With the exception of the Access Lift, and the facilities you start the game with, all require an amount of time to be built and will charge you a monthly maintenance fee on top of the initial construction costs.

You can remove old unwanted facilities that you no longer use if they are empty, but if you do you should note their is a known bug that means that it is very expensive to keep around empty squares that used to be occupied.

All base facilities must be linked, either directly or via other base facilities, to the Access Lift. While you cannot dismantle a base facility that is in use or is linking other facilities to the Access Lift, it can be destroyed in the process of a Base Defence mission. If a base facility is destroyed in this way, any other base facilities that were relying on that facility as a link to the Access Lift will also be destroyed. Any pieces of equipment, craft, or personal will, however, remain in the base (despite the lack of room).

Initial vs. Researched Facilities

Initial Base Facilities:

Researchable Base Facilities:

Quick Cost Reference

Structure Construction Cost Maintenance Cost * Construction Time Stackable?
Access Lift ** $300,000 $4,000 1 day No
Living Quarters $400,000 $10,000 16 days Yes
Laboratory $750,000 $30,000 26 days Yes
Workshop $800,000 $35,000 32 days Yes
General Stores $150,000 $5,000 10 days Yes
Alien Containment $400,000 $15,000 18 days No
Hangar $200,000 $25,000 25 days Yes
Small Radar $500,000 $10,000 12 days No
Large Radar $800,000 $15,000 25 days No
Missile Defenses $200,000 $5,000 16 days Yes
Psionic Laboratory $750,000 $16,000 24 days Yes
Hyper-Wave Decoder $1,400,000 $35,000 26 days No
Laser Defenses $400,000 $10,000 24 days Yes
Plasma Defenses $600,000 $12,000 34 days Yes
Fusion Defenses $800,000 $14,000 34 days Yes
Mind Shield $1,300,000 $5,000 33 days No
Grav Shield $1,200,000 $15,000 38 days No

* These are the maintenance costs listed in the game, and are the price you pay but these are listed incorrectly on the Base Maintenance Screen. See the Maintenance Cost Bug, below.

** GEOSCAPE.EXE says the Access Lift takes 1 day to build and costs $300k, but in fact it is constructed instantaneously, and its cost varies depending the region of Earth where you choose to place it.

Caveat re: Single Use Facilities

Normally, the more base facilities you have, the more you are able to do with them. This is not so for certain facilities, even though it isn't obvious in the game. For these, only the first facility provides any benefit to the base. They are: The Small Radar, Large Radar, Hyper-Wave Decoder, Grav Shield, Mind Shield and the Alien Containment.

The above facilities work with other facilities, but any duplicates won't provide any additional benefits (while still costing maintenance). This is especially important for the Grav Shield and for Radar. The Grav Shield will only repel attackers once per base, no matter how many you have (so one is all you need). Likewise, a second Large Radar doesn't provide any additional large-radar functionality, but a single Large Radar and a Small Radar will stack and combine their scanning abilities.

While the base information screen does list how many radars you have, that's all it effectively does - It does not represent your base's actual scanning ability. Further, once you have a Hyper-Wave Decoder, you do not need any Small or Large Radars, and can dismantle any you have. The Decoder has a wider range and always detects alien craft immediately, unlike either Radar. (But watch out for Paying For Dirt when you dismantle radar.)

The only reason to build multiples from the above single-use list would be for strategic base defence reasons, as each module provides a different lower corridor layout.

Displayed Base Maintenance Cost Bug

X-COM has an interesting bug: When tallying maintenance costs for display on the Base Facilities screen, the code erroneously passes on the row number of the base that the facility is found in, instead of the record number for the facility. The following table shows the first six base facilities from BASE.DAT (compare, e.g., their order in the in-game UFOpaedia). Alongside are the monthly maintenance costs incorrectly displayed for having a facility on a particular base row:

C1 C2 C3 C4 C5 C6
Record  Facility           Maintenance
  00    Access Lift            4k
  01    Living Quarters       10k
  02    Laboratory            30k
  03    Workshop              35k
  04    Small Radar System    10k
  05    Large Radar System    15k

Due to the bug, the monthly maintenance cost displayed on the base info screen for base facilities depends only on their placement (and the in-game UFOpaedia maintenance numbers are effectively meaningless). However, the Geo finance Graph does get the total correct.

The in-game mechanics (the actual monthly cost) are correct as well. Next lines are only hypothetical (see discussion):

Hangars are only charged once, for their upper right (upper left?) square. So a Hangar along the "bottom" of your base would appear to cost $10k/month.

If this actually affected the real cost, clearly it's cheapest to have a strategy that puts a defensive buffer along the third or fourth row, like so:

The incorrect displayed cost for this layout is $329k/month: The hangars on the bottom are 3*10, the lift is 35, and the rest is 6 * (30+10+4). Replace all the Psi with whatever you like, it's irrelevant. Also, the Lift could be anywhere on its row. The average (incorrect displayed) cost for a facility on the top 3 rows is $14,667/month (44/3).
psi psi psi psi psi psi
psi psi psi psi psi psi
psi psi psi psi psi psi
dirt dirt lift dirt dirt dirt
Base-hangar1.gif Base-hangar2.gif Base-hangar1.gif Base-hangar2.gif Base-hangar1.gif Base-hangar2.gif
Base-hangar3.gif Base-hangar4.gif Base-hangar3.gif Base-hangar4.gif Base-hangar3.gif Base-hangar4.gif

A design with hangars along the top cost incorrectly displays as $402k/month, $73k more 'expensive' than one with hangars along the bottom, despite having precisely the same facilities. Here, the average for the bottom 3 rows is $20k/month (60/3).
hangar1 hangar2 hangar1 hangar2 hangar1 hangar2
hangar3 hangar4 hangar3 hangar4 hangar3 hangar4
dirt dirt lift dirt dirt dirt
psi psi psi psi psi psi
Base-psi.gif Base-psi.gif Base-psi.gif Base-psi.gif Base-psi.gif Base-psi.gif
Base-psi.gif Base-psi.gif Base-psi.gif Base-psi.gif Base-psi.gif Base-psi.gif

So (if these costs were real) a design with hangars along the bottom is the most cost effective for a "full" base. Small outpost bases have more options available. If you have hangars along the bottom and a single connector facility on rows 3 and 4, the average (incorrect displayed) cost for facilities on the top 2 rows is only $7k/month! (14/2) This is cheaper than the listed maintenance costs for everything except these three facilities, at $5k/month each: General Stores, Mind Shield, and Missile Defences.

Note: This bug has the dubious honor of being a fairly straightforward, important one which went unnoticed for a dozen years until Sfnhltb caught it in February 2007. For more info, see this page's Discussion.

Paying For Dirt Bug

If you take down a facility and leave bare dirt, you will continue to pay maintenance on it. But not at the old rate; filling the hole back with dirt means it needs special attention at all times by specialists. In fact for every square of dirt you have that used to be a facility you will pay $80k/month. Thats $320k per hangar you take down.

There are only three known ways to stop paying this premium: 1) completely dismantle the base, 2) build over all the spaces that you have vacated. In fact as soon as you start building the new facility you stop paying the premium, as well as not having to pay the cost of the new facility until it is complete, or 3) hex edit the base.dat file in your save and change the byte that indicates the number of days until the destroyed module is complete from 00 to ff.

Note: If you start a facility and change your mind before it is complete, after the time it would have completed you will start paying this $80k premium!

Base Module Collapse

Base modules that get severely damaged through combat will get destroyed the moment you return to the Geoscape. If the destruction of the module causes any adjacent modules to become isolated from the Access Lift, they will collapse like dominos.

Take this base as an example:

hangar1 hangar2 dirt dirt dirt dirt
hangar3 hangar4 dirt dirt dirt dirt
quarters quarters workshop lift stores stores
hyperwave dirt dirt dirt lab small_radar
Base-mind.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif
Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif

Let's assume that there was heavy fighting with blaster bombs during a base defence mission and everything in the workshop was destroyed.

Assuming that the battle was won. The base will now look like:

dirt dirt dirt dirt dirt dirt
dirt dirt dirt dirt dirt dirt
dirt dirt dirt lift stores stores
dirt dirt dirt dirt lab small_radar
Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif
Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif Base-dirt.gif

Half of the base has been wiped out!

The good news though, apart from losing the use of the modules you just lost, much of your assets will remain intact. Amongst them:

Staff will remain, even if there are insufficient beds.
Nothing is lost. Just storage capacity for moving in new items.
The aircraft remain assigned to the base and you can use them as normal. If moved to another base, they will no longer be able to return until a new hangar is built.
Alien Containment prisoners
They'll somehow remain, strangely enough. Possibly shoved into fridges, but they still be available when the containment module is rebuilt.
Research and constructions projects
These will be halted, but progress on research projects should not be lost.

Since single choke-point bases are very popular, it is recommended that fighting with explosives in the choke point module be kept to a bare minimum, lest the entire base is lost. Alternatively, you could use one or more of the invulnerable modules as the choke point. The Access Lift and General Stores work well for this purpose.

Some base modules are built in such a way that they cannot be destroyed during a Base Defence mission, regardless of collateral damage. These modules are the Access Lift, the General Stores, the Living Quarters, and the Hangar.


See Also

UFO Badge X-COM: Enemy Unknown/UFO Defense
Base Facilities:Access LiftLiving QuartersLaboratoryWorkshopGeneral StoresAlien Containment
HangarSmall RadarLarge RadarMissile DefencesPsionic LaboratoryHyper-Wave Decoder
Laser DefencesPlasma DefencesFusion Ball DefencesMind ShieldGrav Shield