A. There are two requirements that you need to meet: You must be leading a strike force of 8-10 players and you must be in possession of a dropship and respawn beacons. Basic dropships and respawn beacons are available from a vendor in Dome City, but more advanced ships and beacons need to be constructed through factories.
Once that's complete, you must place a bid on the enemy hex. Bidding requires credits from the agency bank, so we hope you did your PvP and PvE missions to accumulate some wealth! Once you bid, the mission will launch within five minutes.
If another attacking agency should bid on the same hex you want to attack, a bidding war will ensue. The winner of the bidding war will have the right to attack.
Dropships carry cargo into combat for the attackers -- things like mechs, defensive platforms, respawn beacons, siege vehicles, etc. These items are persistent, so if you lose them during a battle you lose them permanently. Keep that in mind when outfitting your strike force for missions.
There are no advanced respawn beacons in Conquest mode. Defending your spawn point is critical, as it lets you move around the map with ease after dying. Taking out the enemy spawn point, whether your attacking or defending, will certainly give you an edge (plus it costs them credits.)
Dropships only have so much room for cargo, so if you want to carry more items into combat, then you will need to upgrade your dropship. Defenders never have to worry about a dropship -- their facilities store the cargo. If the defender wishes to bring a dropship into combat, they can do so to bring more cargo but remember: the dropship will now be at risk.
Also keep in mind that the number of dropships your agency has limits how much they can attack. When a dropship is out on mission, it can't be used until it comes back.
Q. How do I defend my hexes?
A. When a hex has a bid placed against it, a system warning will go out to all agency/alliance members. Agents can join the defense by simply clicking the territory under attack on the map or selecting the territory under attack under the "Agency Combat Alert" screen.
Agents can also join as part of a strike team, as the strike force leader can select the territory to defend and then deploy. This allows pre-made groups to deploy faster without having the need to muster a random assortment of agents.
Q. Any pro-tips?
A. Remember that Conquest is a game of resource management as well as FPS combat. Agents out on attack can't defend and vice-versa. Items in use in battles can't be used in other battles until they return safely to the agency inventory or are blown sky high. By the way, if it gets blown up, it's not coming back -- it's broken and gone for good.
Therefore, going all out and sending every available agent to attack another hex means that you will be defenseless should another agency attack you. Recklessly endangering your items in combat is also another great way to find yourself without useful resources in a critical battle. Also keep in mind that expanding your territory without expanding your agency roster is a great way to find yourself quickly losing ground, and credits, to needless risk.
Lastly, Conquest works on credits as well as resources. Keep the agency bank stocked with credits from freelance PvP and PvE missions when your zone isn't in its hot period so you can keep your agency stocked with dropships, beacons, and attack power during Conquest.