Americans vs. Panzer Elite: Handling G43s

These are some badass rifles, and they're in the hands of some tough dudes.

These are some badass dudes.

I’ve said before that in my opinion, the American vs. PE matchup in the balance beta is excellent — never been better. And yet the forums, particularly the beta forum, remain lush with complaints about this matchup, almost always from the American side. Without citing any specific post or poster, I’ve seen comments ranging from “OMG Fallschirmjagers” to “Armored Car = still ridiculous” to “OMGWTFBBQ G43 Panzer Grenadiers!”

These comments show me that many players still don’t really get how to fight PE with Americans. It’s just so different from fighting Wehrmacht that many players think the PE is overpowered instead of realizing the truth, which is they need to improve their game against PE. I’ve been playing nothing but PE virtually all beta long, and I can tell you a good American player is not at a major disadvantage whatsoever.

That being said, I’ll be focusing my efforts on American vs. PE for the next few posts, as will Surprise upon his return. As a sneak peek of what’s to come on Rifles Ready!, I believe Surprise is also planning a broad post about the state of balance in the current beta patch and how it will reshape the game once it goes retail.

We’ll start today by talking about handling Panzer Grenadiers that are packing the fearsome G43 sniper rifle upgrade. This weapon is effective at all ranges, including long range. The worst possible situation your Rifles can face is multiple G43 PGs already in green cover, with a PE infantry halftrack chilling behind them. Any attempt by Riflemen to attack such a force will result in extremely heavy casualties, yet you are practically guaranteed to face this situation early in the match.

Talk about bleeding manpower.

Talk about bleeding manpower.

Choose your fights
First of all, if you don’t have to fight a strong PE position with G43s well-positioned, then don’t. If this impressive PE force is sitting on territory that isn’t important (i.e. not a major fuel point or a strategic point that cuts off your access to critical resources), DON’T WASTE TIME FIGHTING IT! Cap around it for the resources you’ll need to fight the PE army.

Most PE players will concentrate their force while their Kettenrad is off capping important resource sectors. A Jeep is perfect for hunting the Ketten. Destroy the Ketten and you just strengthened your natural capping advantage vs. the PE.

Remember the early PE combo of G43s + Infantry Halftrack can do more damage with focus-fire in the early game than almost any other faction. Look for the tell-tale focus-firing of your Rifles, and move that squad to the rear RIGHT AWAY. You can sometimes cause the PGs to move out of cover if your opponent doesn’t issue them another target to focus their fire on. By the same token, DO NOT MOVE YOUR RIFLES WHEN TAKING G43 FIRE! This is how you cause Riflemen to drop like flies. They suffer a negative cover penalty and do much less damage in return because it’s harder for them to move and shoot properly. If you don’t have BARs or grenades, you should minimize any movement out of cover unless retreating the squad. If you need to get close to the enemy, see below about flanking.

RETREAT EARLY. You can’t afford to lose squads so early vs. G43’s Volley Fire and an Infantry HT that can chase down and eliminate a slowed squad easily.

Use a squad in green cover to stay in the fight, then flank with other squads

Use a squad in green cover to stay in the fight, then flank with other squads

Meanwhile, focus YOUR fire on G43 squads, not regular PGs, and focus your fire on the squads with the least health. Rifles are easily replenished, but PGs cost a lot of manpower to reinforce. If you must attack a strong PE position, try to attack from multiple directions to reduce the impact of directional cover. The key is to make sure your charging Rifles aren’t being targeted — stationary Rifles in cover should draw fire. If your enemy switches to target the charging Rifles, get THEM in cover and move your stationary Rifles to charge instead. A Flamethrower Engineer squad is devastating to PGs as it can suddenly kill multiple squad members instantly with no warning. This is very strong against an army of 3-man squads. But don’t tip your hand — try to send in the Flamer from an unexpected direction. Or, if your enemy tries to focus-fire the Flamer at every opportunity, use the distraction to get your Rifles into close range (this often means getting your men to the opposite side of the PE’s cover, so you share the cover). Early grenades are also devastating, game-changing weapons. Used with a Flamer, it becomes very hard for the PE player to somehow target the Flamer while avoiding grenades.

I would say it’s about impossible, even if you’re a pro. It’s safer just to retreat your PGs and regroup. By the way, the American player must seize the advantage of retreated PGs. This is precious time for your Rifles to use their super-fast capping speed to decap key enemy resource points. Your Engies shouldn’t ever stop capping points and decapping enemy points, either.

Getting BARs means your Rifles are no longer at a significant disadvantage in a long-range firefight with equal cover. They can now hold their own. BAR Rifles in green cover basically stalemate G43s in cover, as both types of weapons do less damage-per-second due to accuracy issues when moving.

You can get BARs early on, but if you do, you must buy time to prepare a counter for PE vehicles like the Armored Car or a tiebreaking unit like the Mortar Halftrack (PE can still chill in cover, your guys will get mortared if they don’t move).

My next post will address the issue of resources and ways to handle the PE’s midgame.


6 Responses to Americans vs. Panzer Elite: Handling G43s

  1. LtAss says:

    G43 + inf ht is very tough combo to beat. ive actually messed around with bar+triage in the beta and it works very well. tbh i find a key thing to do is to blob and charge with bar. when i attack i usually have a distract squad and then the main force. send in the distract rifle to peak out from behind a hedgerow/building w/e and the inf ht will turn to fight them. immediately charge the rest of your rifles. they have to turn back which wastes precious time and lets your rifles get close. Its good to remember that inf ht does same dmg vs rifle at close and medium range but rifles do much more. the shock value of your troops attacking at close range will generally panic pe players and they usually retreat their grens, and run away their ht’s which means that they will take dmg as you charge while you receive none. triage is important in this case, you must attack with all rifles, so if the attack is going to fail retreat to avoid taking loses.

    i generally dont use flame engie cause it gets suppressed, if you keep up the attack with your rifles, pe players will generally be on edge and defend their portion of the map. have your engies cap elsewhere/ plant mines (very impt). if your opponent is stupid, he’ll try and counter the rifles with a 3rd inf ht which means you’ll win the game once your 2cp airborne come out and rape his vehicles. even if you cant kill them theyll do tons of dmg to their vehicles and have to spend valuable downtime repairing (even with luft it takes a while). cap the rest of the map and lay mines.

    i had a gg against aftershock on sturz where i did this. my first attak failed stupidly because he didnt take the bait on my distract squad, but i retreated early and barely had to reinforce. 2cps come quick and if you dont use nades, youll have plenty of muni for RR airborne. 4 bar rifle and airborne will rail what pe usually have by then (even acs to a degree)

  2. ShipmentOfFail says:

    I ripped a Yanke with my G43 blob on BARs last night in a 2v2. I wouldn’t recommend it for Americans. Also went for early squad sizes which paid dividends against the BARs.

  3. I have def noticed BAR Rifles with Paratroopers are no joke anymore in 1v1… the counter has to be 1 infantry HT + 1 mortar HT, with huge emphasis placed on keeping the mortar alive.

    I think i’m gonna play around with a Logistiks center 1st or 2nd vs. Americans, I am not so afraid of M8s anymore because of 2 Tankbuster inside an Infantry HT.

    Anyway I am definitely liking the PE/US matchup. Feels very fair at this stage in beta.

  4. LtAss/altimatepirate says:

    hehe. yeah two of those times it was me with the bar/airborne. it’s altimatepirate. more than 2 inf ht is retarded, very few people have the vehicle micro to do 3 at a time, esp the inf ht. i don’t know about a mortar. i like charging my rifles/paras, it depends on the strength of your position i guess, 2 inf ht + g43 will annihilate charging rifles. mortar is good to harass capping though which helps pe A LOT. i think the problem is a lot of pe players anticipate the m8 too much, when they see bar they should know to wait before pulling out an at ht or schreck. upgraded squads with link0 strat may be the way to go. but snipers will tear shit up. hmm. hard to say. my pe used to be very good but i haven’t played in a while. i guess jager command is still the best idea. mp44 counter airborne and AC will punish those early bars, kinda.

  5. Kersal says:

    Generally I prefer to go Jeep to hunt Ketten then I choose grenade asap and then M8. If i succeed to kill the ketten i will focus on the enemy fuel to slow down his grow.
    At the begin of the game the grenade can create havoc on the PE lines more than BAR, because he cannot have more than 2 Gewer squad.

  6. Rob says:

    This is a ridiculous post, all the strategies above are ways to minimize your losses not how you can actually beat the PE. I wonder why that is, oh right, because with out the bar the PE grenadiers kills the crap out of your guys under almost all circumstances.

    F- effort and F- for strategy, you should have put how not to loose so hard against the PE as the title not dealing with the grenadiers who pound for pound can not be beat.

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