Over the weekend, we published a guide to importing Puyo Puyo Tetris for Xbox One. That guide stirred up old feelings in yours truly, as I wrote strategy guides for years before becoming a gaming journalist and critic. It turns out I had another guide in me, this time for Gameloft's World at Arms for Windows Phone and Windows 8!
World at Arms is a military-themed city building game with strategic battles against AI and human opponents. Many gamers are so over city builders, including me. But World at Arms is one of the better ones, especially now that it has Xbox Live Achievements. Our detailed guide will tell you how to get them all and dominate the online competition!
Tracking Achievement progress
When a game has grindy Achievements, it's nice to be able to track your progress towards those long term goals. Thankfully World at Arms lets you do just that. From your base, select the Xbox button from the right side of the screen. Your progress towards both the Xbox- and non-Xbox Achievements will appear.
Note that several Achievements have three stages of completion. You won't unlock the actual Achievement until you reach the third stage.
Ready for Duty (25)
Successfully complete training.
You don't need any help with this one. Just progress through the tutorial and complete the battle at the end of it. The Achievement will unlock when you return to base.
Set a bounty on 100 enemies.
This should come naturally over time if you actively play the game, but you can also grind for it as soon as you gain the ability to attack other players. Such grinding will only cost 10,000 coins total and a little time. From your base, hit the "Fight!" button at the bottom of the screen. The world map displays a selection of potential opponent to challenge.
If you'd rather not fight an opponent, you can select him or her and then choose "Set Bounty." The bounty can be as low as 100 coins, so you'll probably want to make that your bounty size until you reach the point that the default 1,000 coin bounty becomes inconsequential.
Don't just randomly pick players to place bounties on. Try to pick players whose Ground and/or Air stats are rated at four or five bars. Three bars means you have the potential to win the fight with no assistance, and four bars or higher means you'll need to call an ally and/or use powerups to win. Setting bounties on tougher opponents will remove them from the target list for a while, making it easier to find good targets for your actual attacks.
The game also notifies you when someone attacks or places a bounty on you, giving you the option to reciprocate with a bounty of your own.
Money Maker (10)
Collect 300,000 coins.
Coins won from battle, invasions, and quests do not count towards this Achievement. The only coins that matter are the ones you harvest from income-producing buildings at your base.
You'll naturally get this over time. Just check in as often as possible so you can reap the coins generated by your buildings.
You could hurry it along by building more income-producing buildings and/or boosters to increase the coins those buildings produce. Income buildings should not be your primary source of income, though; it should be battle and invasions. My advice is to just build income buildings as required by quests, and otherwise focus your construction efforts on oil and military buildings.
Energy Guzzler (5)
Accumulate 1,500 energy.
Your base has a pool of energy that comes from energy-producing power plants. Each power plant adds to your overall energy pool, and any building or defensive or offensive structure you construct depletes some of that pool.
Your energy pool just needs to be 1,500 or higher *before* building energy costs are factored in, not after. Continue building the most expensive power plants available at your current level whenever your base needs more power (which happens frequently enough) and you'll eventually unlock 'Energy Guzzler.'
Alternately, you could spend Medals on premium buildings like the Solar Power Plant. These tend to boost energy capacity much higher than standard power plants.
Following Orders (10)
Complete 20 social quests.
You'll unlock new quests as you complete previous quests, win new campaign missions, and level up. Quests should always be your priority since they pay out so much experience and other bonuses.
Social quests involve attacking or interacting with other players, and they always offer hearts (social currency) as one of their rewards. These can require you to invade the bases of players you defeat (great source of coins), use the Spec Ops building to beat other players (call for help or spend powerups if needed), provide assistance to allies who request it, and more.
To gain allies more easily, join a faction! As of this writing, the Windows Central faction (called WCentral in the game) has a few open slots (must be level 15 or higher to join us).
If the current social quest is simply beyond your means, you can spend medals to skip it. The skipped quest will still count towards the Achievement.
Moving Up the Ranks (25)
Reach level 20.
Most things you do will produce experience, including training units, constructing buildings, collecting coins and oil, winning battles, and more. Play a lot and do all of those things, but quests produce the most experience of all.
Prioritize every quest you have. If a quest requires certain units to be trained, then only make those units. You can make quests like that go faster by building more training facilities, etc. so that you produce more of the target unit at once.
Never eliminate all of your roads, because some quests require you to tap the vehicles that will only spawn when interconnected roads are present. If any quest truly seems impossible (extremely rare), consider paying medals to skip it.
Finance Manager (5)
Collect from your headquarters.
This is a completely un-fun and grindy Achievement. You have to collect coins from your headquarters building a whopping 5,000 times! Thankfully the building's coin award doesn't need to be full. Collect even one coin and it counts towards your goal. But doing this thousands of times is just grueling busywork.
You can put boosters around the base to make it produce coins a little faster. I basically collected from the building in between every other action, such as refueling the Prometheus, attacking other players, etc. Sometimes I'd sit and collect repeatedly while watching a show. It's a little embarrassing to have this one because it's so pointless and stupid.
Construction and training Achievements
Powering Up (10)
Construct 300 power-ups.
Somewhat early in the game, you'll unlock the ability to build the Weapons Workshop. Found under Military Buildings, it costs 3,500 coins to produce. Power-ups are really important for winning tough battles, and you'll often have to make them for quests anyway.
The key to producing lots of power-ups is make lots of Weapons Workshops. I'd make five early on and eventually go all the way up to ten. Just keep every Workshop busy with either the quickest or most useful power-ups, and eventually you'll have crafted 300.
City Architect (10)
Build 100 boosters.
Boosters are a category of structure that are either entirely cosmetic or provide boosts to nearby buildings. I don't find them as useful as buildings, so I suggest knocking this out early on with a little cleverness.
Expand your territory and move or sell any trees on the new property. Now build as much road as you can, until you fill the land up or hit 100 boosters. Sell the roads and repeat if necessary.
Air Supremacy (10)
Build 200 aerial units.
A few levels in, you'll unlock the Airfield. It costs 5,600 coins and grants the ability to build aerial units like planes and helicopters.
You should make at least six Airfields to start with, and eventually work up to 10. Aircraft take a long time to produce, but this will still come relatively quickly. Always be producing the best two types of aircraft you can. You could grind this out by making the fastest and cheapest units, but it's more productive to stick with the best and let it come over time.
Training Day (15)
Train 500 infantry units.
The Barracks building costs 300 coins and produces infantry. As with 'Air Supremacy,' you should make several of these buildings and work your way up to 10. Keep them all occupied with either the fastest or best infantry units you can.
You also need to make ground vehicles in order to stand a chance of winning battles, but there is no Xbox Live Achievement for ground vehicles. Whenever possible, send some or all high-quality infantry units into ground battles.
Safety First (5)
Build 100 defensive structures.
At level 20, you'll unlock the Development Facility. Found under Military Buildings, it costs 25,000 coins to make. The Development Facility can produce either offensive or defensive structures, but only defensive structures count towards the Achievement.
As with other building Achievements, you'll want to make a lot of Facilities to increase your defensive structure output. These won't be very important once 'Safety First,' unlocks, so sell all but two of them once you have it.
Make as many of the cheapest structure, the Watchtower, as you can. The game limits how many buildings your base can have by level, so you'll eventually hit the limit and have to start selling the Watchtowers you make. One Watchtower costs 4,500 coins to make and sells for 900 coins, making the final cost 3,600 coins per structure.
Flawless Victory (15)
Win a battle without losing any units.
This will come naturally as you play, but you can set it up intentionally by returning to the first campaign battle with high level units.
Destroy 300 power-ups in combat.
During campaign and PVP battles, opponents will sometimes fire missiles or bombs at you. Quickly swipe their projectiles to protect your units.
This Achievement takes a while because enemies don't always fire power-ups. Just play a lot, working your way through the campaign and attacking players as much as possible. Stay alert, strike down all the projectiles you can, and you'll eventually get 'Sharpshooter.'
Increasing the Odds (5)
*Win a battle using 3 or more power-ups. *
You'll win power-ups from completing quests and events, so you can technically get this one before you unlock the Weapon Factory. Just go into battle and use three power-ups before it ends. Battles in which the enemy is rated at four or five bars are perfect for the use of multiple power-ups.
War Hero (5)
Win 375 campaign battles.
It takes a very long time to complete every individual campaign battle, as the oil cost and difficulty of each battle steadily rises. Thankfully, repeated battles count towards the Achievement.
If you hit a campaign battle that your units can't handle, or you just want to get this sooner than normal, grind the very first campaign battle. It only costs two oil per attempt and your high level units will win in a flash. Actually completing the campaign won't happen until your level reaches the forties or fifties, so a little grinding will save a lot of time.
Attack 100 enemies who have attacked you.
You're at the mercy of other players for this Achievement, which can't be boosted with allies or faction members. Whenever someone attacks you, you'll see a notification near the top-left corner of the screen. You can also find the Combat record by hitting the Xbox button on the right side of the screen and then selecting Reports/Combat.
Only opponents who defeated you are eligible for Revenge. Whether you win or lose, you'll still gain credit towards the Achievement.
Actively attacking lots of players seems to increase the likelihood of you being attacked. Play a lot, take revenge whenever you can, and you'll likely get this after 6-8 weeks.
Don't Give Up (5)
Lose 1,000 infantry units.
Another very time consuming Achievement, unless you specifically grind for it. Infantry are ground units, so only Ground battles will help towards this one. Prioritize Ground when you attack other players and make sure you have good infantry to send on the attack. When playing naturally, you're looking at 1-2 months before you lose 1,000 infantry.
To specifically grind for this, attack other players using full teams of Militia, the cheapest infantry unit. You won't reap riches from kamikaze battles like this, but you'll get 'Don't Give Up' a lot quicker and make progress towards 'Warmonger' as well.
Attack 300 enemy players.
See 'Warmonger' below.
Attack other players 1,000 times.
The last grindy battle Achievement requires you to attack a metric kilo of opposing players. This could take anywhere from 6-12 weeks if playing naturally. But you can follow the grinding strategy for 'Don't Give Up' to get it faster.
Whether you win or lose, every offensive attack will count towards the Achievement. The more oil you have, the more attacks you can perform per session. Build lots of oil production and storage facilities so you can stay in the fight.
How should you spend your medals?
Medals are the premium currency in World at Arms. Players will earn some medals for free by completing quests and through limited time events such as Conquests. You might also want to buy some medals to speed things along or show appreciation to the developers. In any case, you want to spend your medals wisely.
One good investment is the Prometheus robot, located along a mountain to the north of your base. The Prometheus costs 100 medals to unlock, after which it permanently becomes a part of your army. The Prometheus requires oil to use in battle, but if you continue to upgrade it (with coins and hearts) it will prove extremely useful in the long run.
The next best options for medal spending are premium oil storage and power plants. The premium versions of those buildings will boost your capacity far more than standard versions. Energy gives you the freedom to build more, while oil lets you launch more attacks and campaign battles. In the long run, these are the resources I most often run short of – especially oil.
Finally, huge spenders can unlock submarines early by extending their bases to the east and building up to the underwater structure at the northeast-corner of the map. All of the land on the eastern island costs tons of coins or medals to unlock. More real estate is always good, and you'll unlock another building or two as you expand your base along the island. But the coin and medal costs are difficult to justify, given that submarines unlock at level 29 anyway.
Earning Achievements on both Windows Phone and Windows 8
If you link World at Arms to your Facebook account, World at Arms will store its save data on the cloud and let you retrieve it from other devices. Game saves are shared between the Windows Phone and Windows 8 versions of the game. Players can earn 200 Gamerscore from each version, for a total of 400 Gamerscore.
Conveniently, any Achievements you earned in one version should pop when you log in on the other version. However, the save sharing is slow and buggy between the two games. You'll want to completely earn all of the Achievements in one version before you switch over to the other. Otherwise, you might find an older cloud save from one game overwriting your newer save from the other.
Time for war
That's all for our World at Arms Achievement Guide, boys and girls! Be sure to read our original review if you need more info. Keep building that base, and leave a comment to let us know that you found this useful.