Advanced Tip: Side-switching and avoidance

The zones are where fights favor the southern player.

The zones show where fights favor the northern player.

This will seem to be an overly simple “tip” for some folks, but I can’t tell you how often a situation arises where this tip isn’t followed. The premise is simple: you’re facing the Panzer Elite or the Wehrmacht and they just jacked up your army on one side of the map, forcing a general retreat. Now, about 90% of mediocre and even average players will do something very predictable — reinforce and go attack the SAME AREA THEY JUST LOST. Why is this not a good idea? Well, it really depends on the map, but on many, many maps,  you can simply SWITCH SIDES OR AVOID HIS ARMY. Take good old Angoville for instance — with the U.S. Rifle squad’s hyperfast 1.25 capture rate, you can retake the side of the map your opponent isn’t on, thereby assuring your flow of resources.

The disadvantages of facing your enemy again on familiar ground are many. First, he’s had time to spread his guys out, place MGs, find cover, etc. Second, he’s had time to lay mines, drop Butterfly Bombs, repair vehicles and call in reinforcements of his own. He is anticipating a counterattack — that’s the flow of all COH games, attack then counterattack.

Divide and bait
You can mix it up by moving where he is weak, a classic doctrine of master strategists. One piece of advice from ZeroCrack’s brief but succinct anti-PE guide for U.S. players is to AVOID your enemy where he is strong. Avoid him and retake territory he’s left open, so you can continue your tech and bait HIM into attacking your position.

This way it can be YOUR mines and barbed wire and troops entrenched in green cover that your ENEMY is forced to run into. Clearly this principle is best illustrated and best used in a U.S. vs. PE matchup given the two factions’ respective capture rates. The U.S. caps territory faster than you can blink while Panzer Grenadiers cap 50% slower than Riflemen.

Other maps
Most Relic-approved maps divide resources evenly, so it’s possible to do this tactic on just about every map. Of course, some maps are much easier to “switch sides” on than others. These include Angoville, Beaux Lowlands, Langres and Wrecked Train. Maps where you can’t effectively switch sides due to cutoff points, tight spacing and/or uneven resource distribution include Semois, Sturzdorf and St. Mere Dumont. These are my opinions based on experience of course; your mileage may vary.

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2 Responses to Advanced Tip: Side-switching and avoidance

  1. Trebor says:

    When taking screenies of maps it’s better to start a game, immediately quit and click “yes” to see the battlefield, THEN view the tactical map and take a screen shot.

  2. I know. I was just at work and feeling too lazy to get a new screenshot. So I reused this one from one of Surprise’s posts back in the day.

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