This Guide has not been updated or edited in 6 Months, as a result is no longer accurate in some areas.
Written by: MarloeEdit
This is my rough draft of a "complete" guide to the Apollo Security team mission. Still to be worked on is adding screenshots/replays to explain boss techniques more visually, as well as any community suggestions. I'd like to see more channel games of Apollo; but I'd LOVE to see people use my guide to do it "right."
A 2K XP Guide to Apollo Security TeamEdit
Apollo Security Team (also written as Sec Team or Apollo Sec in the channel) is the last unlockable storyline in NOTD. You play as a member of the Mining Camp Security team fighting against the initial outbreak. Widely considered “too difficult,” Sec Team is really no more of a challenge than ec –nm, it’s just the general lack of knowledge and experience often causes teams to die to the avoidable. This guide is intended to educate players on the missions and bosses of the Sec Team so that they are forewarned and forearmed (and can at least die honorably).
The game begins with the party split: Team A spawns near the reactor core (above the airlock, in an area called the “helipad” in Alpha) and Team B spawns near Dome A (the East gate of Apollo). Team A is instructed to rescue Team B, and they must reach the west gate by 5:00 game time or a mass spawn of stalkers will obliterate Team B. However, the moment Team A runs south of their spawn, they will encounter several Agrons. Team A must coordinate to kill only the Agrons blocking their path and quickly move into the airlock. Once in the airlock, there will be a ping to the north or south side of airlock warning them of several huggers in the vicinity. BEFORE OPENING THE AIRLOCK GATES, these huggers must be killed. Get up onto a nearby ledge and shoot them down as a group. As soon as the huggers are dead, you will only have a few minutes to run to Apollo. Beware of Devos that spawn up by the Communications Tower and Staport and run together.
Once Team A reaches Team B, the game itself “begins.” You should use this time to gather as much team experience as possible by killing the Infestors on the map. Like in ec –nm, they will spawn banelings if you damage them slowly, so group up together and hunt them down. Do so quickly, as the whole group needs to start heading to the Armory (in the top right) by 10:00 game time. If you do not reach the armory by 12:30 game time, there is a rating penalty. Waste too much time after that and a mass of huggers/slashers will spawn right on top of you.
Once you reach the armory a number of basic weapons (shotguns, gauss rifles, flamers, snipers) as well as ammo will fall on the ground. Pick all of it up, and you will finally be armed in a respect comparable to the other difficulties. If you have a demolitions/engineer combo, activate the Apollo turret system. Once all the ammo has been collected, run to the nearby Fort structure. You will need to hold of the initial outbreak of zombies and infected civilians.
While you are fighting off the outbreak, a Gigantic Infested Marine called “Deimos” will spawn to the west of the fort. He will slowly advance and map and claim to “Melt your Armor.” Deimos has a special attack that does more damage the more armor you have on. He also has an ability to destroy any specialized armor his target has equipped (RA, KA, XS-4 – all have the chance to be stripped and destroyed if Deimos attacks you). However, his attack is very weak against someone that has 0 armor – a mobility recon can tank him quite easily. However, Diemos has one final ability – he will shout and spawn a number of eggs. If the eggs are not destroyed quickly, they will hatch into “super immortal” zombies that do a lot of damage and are very hard to kill. Deimos can use these zombies to heal himself. The way to beat him is to have some good constant aoe damage (like engineer towers) destroy the eggs while a recon tanks him from a ledge. The ledge prevents any “hatched” zombies from getting close to the tank. With this setup you can kill him quite safely, though the medic will need to be healing/weaving the recon to keep him alive. If you are not the tank, use longer ranged weapons because Deimos has a moderate range and will switch targets quite easily.
A Quick LullEdit
Once Deimos is dead, the initial outbreak will slow to a crawl, and the team can venture outside the fort. There will be a call to investigate the Communications tower, but first you can take the lull in spawn to scout the map for additional supplies. High-Capacity Clips, Medkits, Bandages, and any additional weapons/ammo you can find are all valuable. Be careful venturing into Apollo, though, there are pockets of burrowed ghouls (Team B is warned about them in the beginning) that could quickly pick off the unwary. Now is also a good time to kill Seth, as the additional ammo and the Stinger help immensely with the next mission. Once you’ve finished up, have the team hole up in the fort and send a scout out to the Communications tower.
The Comm TowerEdit
You’ll find that your transmission will be intercepted, and find that there might be survivors holed up in the Science Lab. However, a massive horde of zombies is now headed to the fort. The scout needs to either circle around to the south or hang back, as the combination of Agrons with several hundred infested marines will tear him apart if he gets in their range. Snipe down the agrons before they grant the marines vision, and use shotguns/flamers and stingers to clean up the horde before they get inside. Once you’ve finished there, a trio of Tartaruses (EC’s first boss) will leave Apollo and head towards your position. Kill them, and the way into the Lab is clear.
The Science LabEdit
Take this opportunity to preemptively destroy all the turrets in the fort, and everywhere else you intend to walk (such as in Apollo or outside the lab). As a group, you need to make your way into Apollo itself to be able to fight the next boss quickly. With the team gathered just south of Dome C, send your scout into the lab. You will be asked for the security codes, but they have been changed mysteriously. Apollo’s automated security systems will turn against you, and the X-3 Military Drone (nicknamed Nazara) will spawn to fight you.
Nazara does relatively poor direct damage, but can “assume direct control” to buff up nearby turrets/zombies/x-1 drones. He will spawn these x-1s at intervals, so attack him quickly before he can make one too strong to kill. A demo can hold him in place effortless while the rest of the team pounds in the damage. Once Naz is dead, the main control system for Apollo’s security system, HAL, will boot. The team needs to start running out of Apollo and towards the airlock the moment Naz goes down.
HAL is in control of all of Apollo’s defense systems, including several orbital lasers. He will begin tracking you with them as soon as Naz is dead, so you will need to move fast to avoid them. For the moment you must stay as a group, as many zombies have spawned around the map (including agrons) and splitting up will get you killed. After a short period of time the map will ping a terminal that HAL isn’t paying attention to. This will either be at the Mining Site, or just above the airlock. Whichever location is pinged is the one you need to get to. Once there, you can begin to override HAL’s control and turn him off. However, HAL is still tracking you with those lasers. The trick is to activate the download and play a game of “hot potato” where whoever is being actively followed by the lasers runs around, one to three people stays on the hexes to maintain the download, and the rest of the team concentrates on eliminating oncoming Agrons before they can reach those attempting the hack. Once HAL has been turned off, the lasers will lose their tracking and stop firing. You will hear a voice over Apollo’s speaker system from a Dr. Freeman – someone whom, as the Security Team, you have never heard of before.
It is at this point the team needs to decide which game route they intend to complete. Some basic information about each route’s requirements may be in order. For Route A, you will need a tank (Demotank/Asstank is ideal) and a good amount of mob control (SuperBob, Storm Psi, Nano Medic, Engies). For Route B, you will need several (3 is ideal) Stingers, a gravity gun (or Mind Mastery Psi) possibly a demotank (though all he will use is the taunt). While you still have a boss to fight before making the ‘actual choice’, it is at this point that you need to decide, because you want to be prepared to execute the route strategy ASAP.
Freeman Guide – Route AEdit
As a group, you need to move out from the site you hacked. The zombie spawn seems to have only increased now that the security systems have stopped working. While you won’t have any set destination for a while, you should keep moving to avoid getting bogged down and surrounded. If you like, you can start a “circle kite” to try and keep the monsters coming from an expected path. After a few minutes, the doctor will be identified by the Apollo sensor system and you can cut a path to him. Once you reach him, he will spout something about a conspiracy behind the Apollo infestation. You will have a brief moment to save him before he is cut off by a black op. Use either bandages or a quick reacting medic to keep him alive and thermals to spot and kill the op if you want some bonus xp.
Freeman Guide – Route BEdit
You will need a stronghold to successfully execute Route B, so in this route you will need to head as a group towards the fort and re-secure it. Once “safe,” you have the option of sending out a single scout (to find Freeman) or a double scout (to find and save freeman). If you try to save him, have one scout carry several bandages and give the other scout a thermal. While it is hard, it can be done. Either dead or rescued, reaching Freeman will start the next boss, Apoptosis.
Apop is one of the more difficult bosses in NOTD for several reasons. First, she will alter the marine’s vision so that it becomes much harder to see. This makes threats like parasites, ghouls, or even bigger zombies like agrons and stalkers difficult to identify. Use crowd control abilities early and often to prevent the team from getting picked off. Second, Apop is un-selectable and invulnerable to marines that are “not bleeding.” That’s right, you need to have an active stack of “Open Wounds” to damage her. There are some ways of getting this to happen reliably. One, you can tank an Agron for a hit or two in the hope that it will give you a wound. Two, Bob’s Bite can now trigger wounds, so you can be bit by a Bob on your team. Three, you can get wounds from Apop’s attacks. The safest method is to either be bitten or to get wounds from a mind controlled Agron before encountering Apop. Once she reaches you things get a bit chaotic. She applies multiple stacks of wounds with each attack making her difficult to tank “traditionally.” Stuns and control abilities (like Bob’s Spleen) help slow this effect. She will spawn huggers on the party that must be quickly killed. High damage abilities/weapons, like OSOK and the stinger fire will burn her down quickly, but be careful of friendly fire splashing onto a teammate. Once she is finally dead your vision returns to normal and you have a moment to recover. Use medkits/weaves during the fight to stay alive, and bandages/laser after. Try not to move out until the party is patched up. It is at this point that you choose to either “save” Apollo (route B) or “destroy” Apollo (route A)
Triggering route B will start a second wave of civilians/zombies heading towards you. These will shortly become a massive horde of agrons/immortals. You will need to have good defensive set up to hold them off, and liberal stinger use to keep the fort clean. Soon you will see a boss pop up on the screen. Her name is Athena, and she is the keeper of life and death.
Athena “Kite” StrategyEdit
Athena is untankable. 100% untankable. She will tear through your mind controlled slashers and agrons with their 30 armor and their 800 hp in seconds. She will kill you in half of one. If you choose to kite her around the map, you will need to bust through the immortals and agrons quickly. Head out of the fort as a group (sometimes right after apop is best) and begin a “circle kite” as soon as you encounter her. Firing and moving is the key, as is laser designate. As she chases you, Athena will activate a map wide stun that will hit 1 or 2 members of your team. You will need a gravity gun to grab them and keep moving or they will die. She will also periodically lay “eggs”. THIS is her weakness. If you stinger her while she is laying an egg, it will die and she will be weakened as she mourns. The weakening is animated with a bleeding effect, and lasts for 10 seconds. POUR ON THE DAMAGE while she is weakened. If you have enough long range damage (stinger/osok/etc) she should die after killing 4-5 of her eggs. She does need to be standing close by as they die to be weakened, though. The trick is just to keep stinging her constantly and eventually she’ll lay an egg just as a rocket hits.
Athena “Tank” StrategyEdit
Wait, didn’t you say Athena was 100% untankable? You’re right. I did. But there are two things she cannot kill: the first is her own eggs, the second a marine she cannot catch. In this strategy, the team stays clustered up in the fort as a “hero” marine either runs Athena around in front of the fort in a circle, or drags her up into one of the fort arms in the hope she will lay an egg. If the positioning is right, the egg will block her path, trapping her away from the rest of the marines. AS LONG AS THAT EGG is not destroyed, you can blast away at her from a safe spot. You still want a GG to rescue the “hero” in case of a stun, or they find themselves trapped in with her. If things go wrong, having the GG on a Mind Mastery Psi op means they can rescue the whole team with an Inception/Speed of thought/GravGun combo.
Actually saving Apollo. After killing Athena, you will be tasked with destroying the Bio-Domes inside Apollo. You will need to move out as a group and make your way to Dome A, C, and D, and finally Dome B inside the airlock. It is at this point you can commandeer the Thors docked inside the airlock. They prove helpful against Apollo Route B’s Final Boss. Once you have the Thors under your control, group up near Dome B and destroy it to face Apollo’s FINAL BOSS
Is a secret =D. Defeat Athena yourself to find out. If you beat her, you have the tools you need to face the current final boss, but Ability is still working on this section of the story so there may be some changes. Besides, I can’t spoil EVERYTHING.
After facing Apop in the open, you will need to get moving. First you need to reach the Communications Tower to get the access codes, and then you will face an invisible Boss called Hephaestus. If you’ve gotten him during an alpha mission, you have a wrong idea of what to expect – Hephaestus was severely weakened by the Apollo Security team and fighting him at full strength is no picnic.
Hephaestus “Tank" StrategyEdit
The first key to fighting Hep is to stay in a tight group. Every time people get too far away from each other a dialog “Hephaestus senses the fear of a lone marine” pops up and Hep gains greatly increased movement and attack speed. In this state nothing can tank him for very long, so stay together. With the “tank” strategy, immediately after coms you head towards the helipad. You position your demotank at the bottom of the helipad ramp, and the rest of the team slightly above him (hep has a cleaving attack, so stand close, but not TOO close). When Hep comes, you place a road flare to reveal him to the whole group, grab him with an IYF and tank him. He can’t do too much damage to you through your RA, but he likely will not have revealed his weakness yet, so you can’t do too much damage to him, either. If he walks away from the tank, let him go as long as he’s not wandering on top of the party. Hep has a chance to show his weakness as he moves, so the longer he’s not on top of you the better. Just use your taunts to grab him whenever he approaches, and have the team slam damage into him while he’s on you. Once he’s revealed his weakness you can stay on him, and between your crowbar and the team’s damage he drops fast.
Hephaestus “Kite" StrategyEdit
The key to fighting Hep is staying in a close group. The key to fighting Hep is staying in a close group. The key to fighting Hep is staying in a close group. In this method, the team moves as ONE in a “circle kite” upon encountering Hep. As soon as you reach the com tower you wait for him to arrive, and then move as a group away from him. If you do it correctly, he will reveal his weakness much sooner than he would to the tanking group, but this method has much more of a chance to go horribly wrong. If, for example, a random agron jumps on the party, the answer is not to split up and run away from it like you might “normally.” You MUST bull on through as a party and not split up for any reason. If you do scatter, the chance that Hep will catch one of you and tear the hapless marine apart in a few seconds is high. Once his weakness is revealed, your tank can turn around and you all can jump on top of Hep. Try to finish him close to the airlock if you can.
After encountering and defeating Hep, the zombie spawn will reach a fever pitch. You will need to make your way to the reactor core through an increasingly hopeless looking situation, filled with agrons and stranglers. Once there, you will need to set up every last bit of Crowd Control you have. Position your Demo on the entrance and your longest ranged marines on the hexes. As you overload the reactor core, your ability to hold off waves of zombies will be pushed to the limit. Sting, Superbob, towers, Psi storm, do whatever it takes to keep them from breaking through. Once the overload is complete, you will need to escape to EC start as Apollo falls apart around you. Finally, once you are all safe at EC start, you will receive your just reward for containing the threat.