Here are some common trapping tips and strategies that work well for most objective-based missions. There are a bunch of different viable strategies, but these are the ones I use most often. (This started out as a comment, then someone suggested I post it… so that's why it's just a long collection of semi-random thoughts. Feel free to point out any errors, clarify something, or add your own tips/strategies!).
Tunnels and funneling
Build the tunnel between the spawn points (the purple ground tornadoes) and the objective, but not too close to either. Tthat way propane husks are less likely to blow up the tunnel or your objective defense. Either let the traps kill the propane husks or shoot their tanks well before they enter the tunnel — just don't stand in trap tunnels when propane husks are spawning, or shoot/grenade their tanks when they're in or near the tunnel!
You can build ceilings directly over spawn points, but you can't build walls or ramps near them. I usually put floors and walls 2+ tiles away from the spawns. So if "S" is a spawn point and "O" is the objective (let's say a shelter), and each underscore is a tile of ground that you haven't build anything on or over:
S _ _ _ _ _ _ O
…then you could place a wall ~2 tiles away from the spawn point, and place ceilings over the spawn point (even right above it), and nothing would get destroyed by husks spawning in:
¯ S ¯ ¯|¯ ¯ _ _ O (good!)
Ceilings at least one tile above the spawn point won't get destroyed, but floors and walls right near the spawn point get destroyed when husks spawn in, so if they are the only supports for the ceiling then the entire tunnel gets taken out:
¯ S |¯ ¯ ¯|_ _ _ O (bad!)
(…where ¯ = ceiling and | = wall).
Draw a line (shortest path possible) between the spawn points and the objective — that's where the husks are going to travel. Build the tunnel as close to their path as you can (don't try to divert them very far from this path). Block off the sides with walls so they are more likely to enter your tunnel.
When in doubt about the path husks will take, build a long, uninterrupted wall between the spawn points and the objective. Once the defense stage starts, wherever the husks break through is where you build the trap tunnel (at that point you have to build it really quickly, but I like building under pressure!).
You can use walls to redirect husks up to ~3 tiles from the shortest path. Any more than this and they will aggro the walls to go through them. The more you upgrade walls and place ramps angled towards the spawn point, with another wall behind the ramps, the less likely husks are to try to break through your structures.
Use leveled-up ceiling gas traps at the start of the tunnel, and (optionally) ceiling zappers at the end. I don't use ceiling zappers but they're good at taking out bigger husks that the gas traps don't kill.
Put down wooden floor spikes all along the tunnel to slow husks down, so they spend more time in the gas. You only need to use the blue/rare ones, and they don't need to be perked up (but level them up to the max).
Put Wall Launchers in a few spots to launch husks back in the tunnel, so they spend more time in the gas. At the end of a tunnel you can also use a Wall Launcher on the side to launch husks into a 1×1 "death trap" (Ceiling Gas + Wooden Floor Spikes + Wall Dynamos).
Place diagonal walls and/or short 2/3rds walls (edit down a wall so only 2 out of 9 squares at the bottom are blue), and place them in a few spots to make the husks have to walk around them, so they spend more time in the tunnel. Basically you want them to zig & zag back and forth through your tunnel, get slowed down by spikes, and get launched back — anything to make them spend more time in it.
Use Wall Dynamos on wall tiles that don't have Wall Launchers on them (not every single tile needs a trap on it, but in the most difficult missions this doesn't hurt).
Pits and basements
Clear out pits and houses with basements near the objective, and use Wall Launchers to push husks into them (if they naturally walk near the pit, or if you can redirect them with walls). If they have no way out then they will die (tip: put down a pyramid in the corner — players will be able to jump out from the top of the pyramid if they accidentally fall in, but husks can't).
You can also put down Floor Launchers, with ramps/stairs above them, angled towards the pit/basement. Or you can use floor spikes to slow husks down while the wall launchers reload.
For some suggestions on how to perk the traps listed above, click here to see how I have mine perked (the 2nd gas trap I'm going to level up to 130 so I can craft both 106s and 130s). I went with a crit. build for the gas trap because they will take out the smaller husks no matter what the perks are, and they have a chance to crit. with every tick of the gas, so they have a better chance to also take out bigger husks.
Spawn points and types
During the "pre-defense" stage of some missions (like finding the modules in Repair the Shelter, or waiting for the balloon to fall in Retrieve the Data) there are "patrol spawns." These are placed randomly throughout the map, and some of them might be near the objective. This can be misleading and cause you to build trap tunnels for them, but they will disappear when the defense stage actually begins, and then the actual spawn points for the defense stage (which look exactly the same as patrol spawns) will appear. For Repair the Shelter and Retrieve the Data (can't remember the other missions that behave like this… Evacuate the Shelter maybe?) I'll build some basic trap tunnels around the objective where I think they'll be needed, but not put any traps in yet. Then once the defense stage starts I'll place traps where the husks are actually walking.
(The patrol spawns are the only type of spawn point that the infamous Patrol Ward affects. So if there are patrol spawns pestering you near a radar you're building, or near an objective you're trying to build defenses around, the Patrol Ward can actually be slightly useful!).
Some missions will pop up a message when the defense begins like "the storm can change directions." The spawn points will move during the defense stage. For these you'll want to rely on trap tunnels less, and/or put more traps right around the edge of the objective.
Some objectives will just naturally have a lot of spawn points around them (especially if the objective is not on the edge of the map), and it might not be worth it to build a trap tunnel for every single one. That's another scenario where trapping right around the objective is sometimes more effective.
Using traps is not needed throughout most of the game, but they are pretty much essential in high-level missions. You can read guides or watch video tutorials, but I think the best way to learn is just to experiment and figure out what works best!
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