Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build orders

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Codex
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Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build orders

Postby Codex » Tue 18 Mar, 2014 5:56 pm

FINAL VERSION 03/10/2015:

This is a guide that I wrote 3 or 4 years ago. I have compiled individual sections that detail many of the main strategic concepts in Dawn of War 2. All of the following principles are more pronounced in 1v1, but are applicable to the other modes too.

With experience and understanding these sections, you'll better be able to gauge who is favoured at any point in the game. This is important. This requires knowledge of build orders, unit interactions, game economy, map control, VP pressure, and so on and so forth. But it is important to be able to do this from a player's perspective. It's far easier to see who is favoured in the game from an observer perspective than it is to see from a player perspective.

NB: Although this is intended to be read in order since many of the concepts dealt with are explained earlier in this guide, each of the sections are also standalone.

Note that this guide has been edited from its original form: as a result none of the supporting replays are current, and thus the sections referencing them are either gone or left in but the replays not provided. Since I do believe that my time as a very active player and instructor in the game has come to an end, these replays are unlikely to be replaced, so unfortunately the examples will have to stand in text.

Contents:
1. Maintaining the Advantage and Retreating
2. The Transformation of Advantages and Dynamic Compensation
3. Heavy T1 versus Fast Teching
4. Map Control versus Generator Bashing
5. Gauging your opponent's strategy, then fighting it
6. Tailoring your economy to what you need
7. Control of the Centre
8. Situational Awareness
9. Time
10. The Strength of the Implied Threat
11. Vehicle timings and fighting against a vehicle
12. Initiative, Counterplay and Trading Favourably
13. Ratting
14. Conclusion
Appendix

1. Maintaining the Advantage and Retreating

I put this principle first because it is the most important. Knowing about who has the current advantage is about information. If you know all the races intimately that are involved in the match, you can have a good idea about when to expect the next unit, what unit to expect. For example, I know I've won the attrition war if I lose 1 tac (75 requisition) for 4 sluggas (90 requisition). Another example of useful things to know is recovery time back at the base. Consider you've won the first engagement. How long will it take for him to get back to full health? This will let you know if you have time to decap the requisition points, or go for a gen bash. On the other hand, this provocation might make him come out of his base with less than full health, which benefits you.

Once you have the advantage, you should strive to maintain it, and build it as quickly as possible into an absolutely crushing advantage. This advantage is both on paper and psychological. It is extremely difficult to play your best when you are under pressure. If panic sets in, or the player gets micro overloaded by too many things to do over the map, then they will slip up. Don't sit back and let your opponents recover! If you're idle when he's healing at base, basically both of you are achieving as much as each other, except that he gets healed units. Meanwhile, he can regroup, get his formation, take a deep breath and be ready for the next engagement. Be absolutely ruthless and attack his economy on multiple fronts, or try to devastate his army. Never sit back and give him a moment’s peace if you can help it. Attacking on multiple fronts makes it even harder for the player under pressure to hold his position.

This brings us onto retreating. Retreating relieves the pressure on your opponent. Generally people say don’t take fights that you cannot win, which isn’t strictly true. For example, if you hold three quarters of the map, you can hold the line with tactical marines and scouts in cover for a while. Retreating instantly allows them to advance and take the map without a fight, and this is hardly ideal. Look for situations where you can get a little more from your economic and/or VP advantage. Having a presence on the field allows you to harass cappers, making them less efficient, and allows you to get map control elsewhere if your main army is healing (rat harder).

Retreating also takes a lot of time, especially on larger maps. One of the advantages of fighting close to your base is the retreat time is short, so you can get back out there faster. On the other hand, if you’re on the offensive and you retreat your units cheaply, then you’re going to be spending a lot longer retreating back to base, weakening your grip on map control and the game. Bear in mind the length of time your units need to heal at base. You need to be balancing all of these factors when you consider retreating.

For example, if I win a crucial battle in the early game, I’ll often buy a tac flamer and push gens, even if they’re on 150 hp total with 2 models. This is because I know I’ve forced his army off and it’ll take time to heal and come back out again, and I have this window of opportunity to cause maximal damage to my opponent.

2. The Transformation of Advantages and Dynamic Compensation

Advantages can come in many shapes and forms. You can have a tech advantage, a VP advantage, an economic advantage, an army advantage and a map control advantage. (Note: These advantages are concrete, as opposed to positional/temporary. A temporary advantage is effectively opportunistic: for example your opponent is in one tight blob, and taking advantage of this weakness by jumping on them with your ASM.)

Consider the concrete advantages. You can effectively swap one of these for another, or, better still, leverage one of them to get another. For example, a larger army can be used to gen bash, which gives you an economic advantage as well as a tech advantage. Or you can use your superior army to force off your opponent and gain a map control advantage. This is called the Transformation of Advantages.

A less obvious example would be using your VP advantage. Consider the scenario your opponent has 50 tickets left, and your army sizes are about equal. Then you can leverage your VP advantage, either forcing him to isolate capping units that can be picked off, or pushing for one point while you ninja the other VP, take the rest of the map or simply push for generators. A map control advantage can be leveraged in the same way, giving your opponent the unsavoury choice of conceding the economic and VP advantage while fighting your army or again, he has to try to cap under fire and isn’t able to bring his whole army to fights. Most points don’t have cover around them so it’s strategically disadvantageous to have to cap with enemies around.

Never underestimate these kinds of advantages. Accruing these various advantages is what eventually leads to a completely winning game, effectively strangling the opponent. Doing so leads to the kind of grip on a game that good opponents rarely allow. Only by maintaining and building your advantage can you prevent the really annoying comebacks that you never saw coming.

Note: As far as transformation of advantages go, temporary advantages are no different to concrete advantages: you can still leverage a positional advantage to gain something concrete (like a gen bash). The only difference is that a positional advantage has to be exploited now or it will disappear, whereas a concrete advantage can be leveraged multiple times.

When you get gen bashed, you can seek direct compensation by gen bashing him back. Alternatively, you can get dynamic compensation for a loss. The most obvious example, which is covered in more detail in the next section, is when you go for a heavy T1 vs fast T2 (or even a heavy T2 vs fast T3 in some cases). When you get a large army, it costs requisition and typically power too, so you’re falling behind on both fronts. In addition to this you pay more upkeep (covered in more detail in the appendix). So you must seek some compensation if you want to avoid getting smacked in the face by a Deff Dread or a Land Raider.

Your superior army size is that compensation, but they will give you nothing unless you try to leverage some compensation with said army. The best way to do it is by gen bashing, since it costs requisition to replace power and slows down their power income, which is directly balancing out the economic factor. Meanwhile your army will be bigger, giving you a strong edge. Map control and especially a VP advantage are particularly useful too, so you will need to use your judgement. Typically the state of the game will determine what is the best course of action: e.g. requisition tends to be more important to deny as the game drags on, but power is the most important during the early game. Vps also become more valuable as the tickers approach 0. As a rule of thumb, though, if you've got the larger army size, bashing gens will give you the best results.

Another less obvious example of dynamic compensation is when I need something badly. If I need ASMs badly in a matchup in say, 1v1, and I know I can’t hold gens, I get a generator anyway. I know I need those ASMs, and they will get me compensation by being very effective against his ranged blob. That strategic strength allows me to sacrifice a generator and a node just to get those ASMs out.

The lesson here is that most of the strategy in the game involves choosing which advantages to strive for, and what compensation to strive for when you’re behind. Fast teching strives for a tech advantage hoping for an army advantage later as a result of this. Heavy T1 strives for an army advantage to nullify that tech advantage, and needs to leverage the superior army to strangle the opponent's economy (which he is reliant on). Of course more than one kind of advantage can be aimed for and attained, but these are paradigmatic examples.

3. Heavy T1 versus Fast Teching

Over the years, I've heard a lot of people complain about the inevitable double Nobz after a 2 shoota opening, or that they can't deal with a power free IG rush. Well, the answer is: either fast tech yourself, or go for a heavy T1.

If both players go Heavy T1, then you've got a massive brawl on your hands, and while it is more common to see heavy T1 vs heavy T1 these days, it's pretty unlikely. What is more likely is that someone will try to fast tech and another will try to press an advantage home with a larger army.

For the fast teching army, your main aims are to strive for activity while keeping your force relatively compact. A suppression team works well in these situations because they're cheap options that cost more power to counter (usually) than to build. Aim to hold onto a smaller part of the map but harass your opponents' points as well. Be careful not to overextend: isolated units are much more vulnerable to attrition or just being forced to retreat, and you will get punished by the larger army size. Once you retreat, it's harder to hold onto those all important gens and you'll lose map control far too cheaply.

Instead, what you should aim to do is hold the line, at least try to break even in the fights, and buy time to go to T2. If he doesn't manage to bash your gens enough, you'll have a vehicle (or some other T2 monster) all over his gens, trapping him on the way to T2 and with no power income, which is one of the worst positions to be in. Note that it is far riskier to fast tech against an army with easy gen bash options like SM, Chaos and especially Plague Champion, Orks, and so on.

When playing heavy T1 you have to get compensation of some kind, because you have spent more on your army in both power and requisition. If you are not proactive enough you will get hit in the face with a high tech unit that feels unstoppable. The most obvious targets for compensation are the opponent's generators, where you can force the issue and possibly start a fight with the defenders, who are outnumbered by your heavy T1. After this, mop up the gens and decap, then use your larger army to mop up map control too. Aiming for other advantages (VP or map control) are viable too but less effective as it doesn’t actually stop them getting the fast tech unit out.

All simple, in theory. In practice it is obviously more difficult. Sometimes you will get outteched despite bashing some gens and get hit by a higher tier unit. What you need to do is be able to dance around it if it’s a walker, and get snares immediately. Try to minimise the effect of his higher tier unit through distraction or going for counterplay elsewhere on the map. Your priorities are to preserve your gens, try to keep a grip on map control and just buy time until you tech yourself. If you’ve played correctly, you shouldn’t be more than a minute behind. After that, you’ll have good chances to win.

4. Map Control versus Generator Bashing

Has anybody experienced that really annoying WSE teleporting EVERYWHERE decapping EVERYTHING and making a nuisance out of himself? You can’t get a foot in the door map control-wise, you’re hating his webway gates that take too long to root out, you can’t strive for both map control and holding your gens... what do you do?

This map control playstyle revolves around the dynamic that your opponent is more mobile than you. It may feel like you’re chasing ghosts. So don’t chase after them, it’s a waste of your time. What you need to do is force the issue by going straight for their generators.

The problem is that a map control style necessitates the division of one’s force into many smaller forces. As such it will take time to organise a defence, and on most maps you can bring the whole of your force and force the issue at his power. The idea is to seek dynamic compensation for your falling behind in map control and economically. Either he gives up his gens cheaply, or he can come to defend. If he does defend, this strategy takes away the main strength of your opponent: mobility. Mobility isn’t nearly as useful in a fight. If you can defeat your opponent’s army while you’re at it, so much the better. Then you should strive to use this advantage to leverage some map control back.

Conversely, a map control style striving for an economic and map control advantage should aim to decap the opposing natural points and cap as many of the other points as possible without compromising your gen safety too much. Harass an opponent's economy and army while avoiding pitched battles that are not in your favour. I.e. ratting. Losing gens is fine, as long as it costs your opponent time and/or troops to do it. Giving up gens cheaply is generally a blunder that will make it difficult to get back into the game.

However, all is not lost. A map control style can give a large VP advantage that means a long-lasting advantage that can be constantly leveraged for the rest of the game. It may be that too many of your opponent’s superior troops are tied down to keeping the tickets from reaching zero (like Nobz desperately trying to cap VPs), and this buys you time to get out your own elite troops. It also gives you the option to grind out a win by building multiple cappers to assault all the points simultaneously.

5. Gauging your opponent's strategy, then fighting it

There is a dogma in Dawn of War 2, that there are ideal ways to play and that build orders are the way forward. But this leads to situations where you stubbornly stick to your build order while being caught completely off guard by a novelty that your opponent springs on you. I know I’ve done it in the past.

An example of this would be when Ronin went for 3 sluggas, 2 shootas and a stormboy against me as FC. I decided on tac, scout, ASM, but then I had a problem. I wiped one slugga, but his 3 melee and Warboss were going to shut down my ASM+ FC so quickly that I didn’t have a chance. I had 2 shotgun scouts (an obvious choice, given Ronin’s build), but then I couldn’t control the map very well if they were tied down to staving off this ork melee horde, so I thought about what I needed, which were melee counters and cappers. So I got a third scout.

This may seem a simple and perhaps obvious answer when you read it, but in the middle of a game, in the heat of the moment, habit and dogma takes over. Generally, players are used to putting their gens down at this particular point in the game, sticking by their normal build order of 2 scouts, tac and ASM, and cannot hope to compete both in fights and map control. Map controlling means shotgun scouts no longer babysitting the heavy armor from melee, all the while being pressurised by shootas. Bringing my whole army to bear would mean losing horribly in map control. This scenario would have pretty much ended with no gens and low prospects for T2, while Ronin is getting a Wartrukk to further pressurise my gens.

However, getting the third scout freed up my shotgun scouts for anti-melee duty while keeping up with map control. Eventually I pushed onto his gens and bashed him back, teched to T2 at the 13th minute (which was earlier than he did), and got a Dread to polish things off.

The lesson to be learned here is that dogma and habit must be shaken off. There’s nothing wrong with following a build order if it’s ideal, but one build order cannot possibly be ideal in all situations. Therefore what you need to do is gauge your opponent’s strategy and think about what unit roles you need to counter that strategy. Then you pick your units.

The next example is where I played vs chaosord as Chaos vs Lord Commissar. His strategy was to maximise dps and attrition on me, while taking little attrition thanks to his 3 sergeant upgraded GM. So my strategy was to minimise his dps, maximise AOE, and bash gens, a classic heavy T1 vs power-free fast tech game.

What I did get was 2 CSM into noise marines, giving me area of effect (noise marines, doomblast, Chaos Lord combi-flamer, PC bile spewer), units to stop them firing (doomblast, CSM melee, PC melee, Chaos Lord melee, noise marine silence), gen bash capacity (noise marines, plague champion bile spewer) and either speed worship to control the flow of battle (e.g. kite off CSM, shoot CL, etc) or heal worship to force them off the map. I never allowed him to play his game. If, on the other hand, I stuck with a havoc and 2 CSM, then I give him counterplay with a flare on my havocs, and 3 GM focus fire. Noise marines are far more solid in that situation, since they tick all the boxes and complete my anti-fast tech build.

Knowing your opponent's options is an important skill too. This comes from just knowing the game, and of course experience. An intuition about the economic state of the opponent (which involves scouting his power and understanding how much attrition he's taking), combined with scouting out your opponent's force should give you an idea of what to expect. For example, if you see a T2 FC not spending much except to buy upgrades for his T1 army, you should be expecting a T3 rush and a T3 unit to follow quickly. Anticipation is important since it means you can loadout your army to be prepared preemptively, or at least have a unit that can be upgraded at the appropriate time (lascannon on your devastator, perhaps). Another example would be fast generators from SM in 1v1 I'm expecting a fast razorback, and will be looking to get a snare or autocannon ready.

Finally, if you think you're the better player, get more units out! Try to micro overload him! If they try to match your army size, worse players will typically lose their advantage and start to blunder in virtue of not being to command so many units effectively. You can even achieve the same effect by fighting across the map- weaker players will not be able to micro more than one fight at once.

6. Tailoring your economy to what you need

Since I’m preaching that you should be adaptable in your build order, so I must now preach that you be adaptable in your managing your economy. Think about what unit you’re aiming for. If it’s Plague Marine spam, stop buying gens. (Not that I condone PM spam.) If it’s a Chaos Dreadnought, put down more gens. An example of how I do things differently is when playing FC and planning to go ASMs, I need 2 scouts for map control, a tac and ASM, which means I need slow power. So I’ll node after the second scout and get a gen, and then get ASM, when the requisition and power will become available around the same time. On the other hand, sometimes I get artificer’s armor+ stormshield for FC, then tac and 2 HBD, missing the second scout, and for that I’ll get the node and 2 gens as soon as I am able, since this is a much heavier build on power.

Therefore this section is closely related to the last. What unit roles you need will affect the balance of your requisition and power needs. Similarly, your economic limitations will change what you can get: you may need to compromise on a unit choice in order to get play. Sitting around stubbornly for your ideal Chaos Dread can mean you lose too much in the meantime. Weigh up your options before proceeding. Remember that you can always start building a unit and then cancel it if the situation changes, and similarly with upgrades (especially with commander wargear).

Be mindful of your allies’ needs as well. Power heavy races would appreciate some gens from their allies.

7. Control of the Centre

Control of the centre can be very useful to have. On some maps, (e.g. Siwal Frontier) if you place a suppression team in the centre, you can make it much more difficult for them to move through it. They now have a choice: they can either take a detour or try to assault the position. One tactic that is very effective if your opponent's army is in the North, and you've got a flamer. Use a suppression team (with a bit of support) to hold down the centre and send the other half of your army to get a quick gen bash. He'll charge through the centre, and get suppressed. He can either now crawl away and take the detour, or try to fight through. All the while you've shift-right clicked (to queue up attacks) all the gens and killed them with the flamer party, and shift-right clicked the centre so they'll come to help with the fight after they finish gen bashing.

When you control the centre, you can also respond quickly to strikes across the map. Having a reinforcement point like a Nurgle Shrine or Teleporter beacon is great, since it means you don’t have to go back to base, which saves you time. If you’re suitably entrenched it can secure you one VP. Consider a situation where the army sizes are about equal. If your opponent pushes hard for one flank point, you ninja the other. If he pushes for both VPs then you send a larger force to attack the smaller of his two forces. If he pushes straight into the centre, where you are strongest, this benefits you, the entrenched defender.

Long-lasting control of the centre will require a suppression platform and/or a reinforce point. Bear that in mind and gauge if it will be worth the initial investment.

8. Situational Awareness

To return to the concept of advantages, there are temporary and long-lasting advantages. Having more gens up or a better army are long-lasting advantages. The difference is that temporary advantages need to be leveraged now whereas long-lasting advantages can be leveraged multiple times.

Some advantages are in players’ hands. Some of them are abilities, some are even game-changing abilities. Shotgun blast, for example, gives the SM a temporary advantage against melee. Touch of Nurgle on heretics gives a game-changing temporary advantage vs infantry, and same is true of Use Yer Choppas on sluggas.

Knowing all this, and knowing when to expect these abilities, is all about situational awareness. You should know what tricks your opponent has up his sleeve and what you have up your sleeve, ability and global wise. If there are game changing abilities, you need to know when’s best to use yours and what your exit strategy/ counter is when he uses his. For example, my exit strategy as TM is to use powerful sweep against UYC sluggas and counter is FC battlecry if I’m using him.

However, there are more subtle advantages that are positional. Again, there can be long-lasting positional advantages (like Control of the Centre) or there can be temporary ones. Temporary positional advantages are the most important concept that I want to explain here. An example of a temporary one would be the tactic given in the previous section: my having an awareness that he was capping North on Siwal Frontier meant that I could lock down the centre with suppression teams and then get a free gen bash.

Another example would be a game I played against chaosord and I noticed his Catachans (which were the strongest unit in his army at the time) were capping the West Point. This made his gens on the East side vulnerable, which I promptly took advantage of. These positional advantages can disappear in a matter of a few seconds sometimes, so striving to make the most of them is very important. These sorts of vulnerabilities can allow you to do a lot of damage to your opponent with zero or minimal investment on your part.

In team games, you should also be aware of tactical possibilities that arise due to your allies' participation. If he's under fire from two players, then you can choose to either attack the vulnerable economy they leave behind or help your ally out. This decision will be based on whether you have time to do so. Also be mindful of when you can team up to cut off an enemy's reteat path or simultaneously assault a lone player from different directions.

9. Time

Ever seen someone use vanilla tacs to shoot a power node? Or a vanilla FC meleeing it? Don’t you find it infuriating? 90% of the time, your tacs will have something better to do, and 95% of the time your FC does too. Meanwhile, your opponent has capped half the map.

This is due to a concept known as time. It takes an age and a half for an FC to dent a power node, and tacs aren’t that much faster. You’re far better off trying to wrest map control, or harass his army. This game is a lot about optimisation and efficiency. Unlike Chess, where both players have the same amount of time, this game happens in real time. But like Chess, this game is a lot about unit activity. The more active your units are, the more powerful they are. This principle is obvious when you see people group capping points- it’s inefficient and wastes time, and they fall behind in map control. So when you have flamers, attack ground more than one generator at a time. It’s more efficient. The same goes for retreating. Retreating unnecessarily or cheaply reduces your unit activity. So strive to not retreat until necessary (totally overwhelming force, imminent avoidable losses). You need to constantly judge what the most efficient use of your troops is.

This will help you think through your capping order too. Not only economically (if I’m going for 2 CSM, I should cap req points first), but also so that they end up in battle formation by the end of the intial caps. Consider FC vs Orks on Green Tooth Gorge. I know that standardly I will be facing 2 shootas, which are weak before upgraded. So I’m going to cap the closer flank points with scouts (because they’re fast) and push up the FC to cap a further point. Tacs with their faster cap will cap the natural requisition point, then join with the FC and push. A second scout is coming to cap the far points, but I know I have the time and a window of opportunity to push with my FC, first scout and tac on the enemy position to try to get initiative on gens before they get big shootas.

On the other hand, if I’m against Chaos on Siwal Frontier, I know that my scouts are going to have a lot of difficulty capping properly, so they’ll be scouting the enemy position before settling on a point. I’ll then use my tacs to screen my capping scouts, and then bring my FC into play after he finishes his second cap. Then I can even use my tacs to cap quickly if he’s reorganising his troops. Timing matters. If instead I sent my scouts for the middle VP then it’s likely they will take some attrition while trying to cap, probably not succeeding in capping at all.

You can improve your efficiency by using waypoints. Holding shift while right-clicking allows you to queue up commands while you're less busy, giving yourself more chance to micro everything when the fighting starts. Look for ways to use this to your advantage. Using rally points from your HQ is very useful too as you can get your units to the front line even if you forgot that you had built them. If your opponent is being inefficient, take full advantage of that. Being more efficient with your troops will grant you an advantage that feels effortless to attain.

To sum it up: Efficiency, efficiency, efficiency. It wins games.

Another way that time affects the game is repair. Units that repair are typically capping starting units (with the exception of the IG HWT). If you hurt a sentinel, or any vehicle, you can make them commit troops to repairing that vehicle. That means that even if you don't kill the Dread that escapes on 10 hp, then he has to spend a long time repairing that to get it back to fighting fitness. This can be exacerbated if you manage to kill their repairing unit. Giving him units to repair gives an opportunity to force the issue by attacking his economy further. If he doesn't challenge you and continues to repair, then that's easy pickings. If he does, then his vehicle is neglected. At the very least you can take important capping units out the map control game for a while.

10. The Strength of the Implied Threat

When you have your opponent dancing to your tunes and you're dragging him and his forces around the map like a ragdoll, you're controlling the flow of battle. It's advantageous both psychologically and practically as well. Running back and forth across the map is a waste of time, likely indicative of indecision. Further, if your opponent is aware of this it can be highly unsettling.

One of the resources that you have at your disposal to control the flow of battle are implied threats. Grenade feinting is an obvious example of implied threats. If you run up to a ranged blob and you feint a grenade, they'll start running all over the place and reduce their dps, and hopefully you can land the perfect grenade. However, once you throw it, the threat is gone, and they'll start ripping you to shreds again, perhaps.

Consider an SM mirror. His tacs and scouts are in cover. I can simply run up a scout+sergeant up to their cover. However, I don't even need to use a grenade feint. Good players will expect a grenade coming so will abandon the cover, leaving you to shoot their now uncovered backs. Even better, you still have the grenade ready. If he doesn't leave cover, then you can use the nade from very much closer range, which makes it harder to dodge.

In a similar way, you can bluff at having these threats at your disposal. For example, I've done this several times with sentinels with my stomp on cooldown, and this works very well against weaker players who don't know sentinels very well. You can charge in, making him think you're going to stomp. That will make him scatter and expose his troops to your real dpsers, GMs and catachans, while lowering his dps. Similarly with grenade units (scouts, GUs) that are close to finishing their cooldown, or multiple GUs with BE, you can charge in, threatening, and the implied threat will be enough for him to give up the high ground.

You can even do it with upgrades. Consider shootas garrisoning a building, and I have a scout and tac around. I start building a scout sergeant, and run my scouts near the building entrance, and keep the tacs in their retreat path. The threat of a sergeant coming should be enough to make them evacuate before the sergeant arrives. If he doesn't, nade the entrance, focus fire, melee on retreat= dead shootas. If he does evacuate, cancel the upgrade and continue with your ASM plan, which the scout sergeant upgrade slows down.

Another example of threatening with upgrades is with tac flamers. They are very efficient at taking out gens by themselves, and if he goes for early fast power I will start upgrading a flamer the moment I see they are vulnerable. If he comes to defend, I cancel the flamer, because it makes them harder to tie up in melee and better able to use cover while keeping their dps and I will trying to fight for an advantage with a larger army. If he leaves them vulnerable, free gens. The same can be done with commander upgrades, but I'll leave you to figure those ones out.

Due to how efficient tac flamers are at gen bashing, it makes them a very high priority target for your opponent. You can send your commander and tac, and your implied threat is the gen bash. If you send vanilla tacs near his gen farm and he decides to take you on, he can send a similar sized force, or he can send his whole army. If he sends a similar sized force, you can try to win the fight, and if you do, grab the tac flamer to finish the gens. The more interesting and instructive scenario is when he feels compelled to send his whole army to defend his gens, and then you can cap the map with your scouts. Meanwhile your tacs and commander don't actually engage. You can cap nearby, and stay mobile if they chase you. The implied threat is still there, but that means your opponent has to try to get his foot in the door in map control without letting you execute your threat of the gen bash. This is most obvious on a large map like Green Tooth Gorge with lots of resource points.

The instructive element here is that the implied threat is sometimes stronger than the execution of it. It may be less effective to actually strike at the gens with your whole army. You may lose the fight, or you might lose too many models, or you may not actually bash and gens, break even in the fight, and have to spend longer retreating and healing at base, thereby actually being at a disadvantage. However, being elusive with your scouts and threatening with your tacs without actually engaging can leverage you a map control advantage with minimal investment on your part. On the other hand, with abilities, the implied threat is gone the moment the ability is on cooldown, or you don't have sufficient energy to use it. Good players will ruthlessly exploit that and press when these abilities are not at your disposal.

Try to squeeze as much as you can out of your position! For example, when I was playing ph03n1Xx the other day, he had rushed 2 Deff Dreads, I had an FC with armor of alacrity and I had a good foothold in map control. So when I saw the Deff Dread while I was still in T1, I just made a nuisance of myself. I sprinted to decap his natural req, which made him bring his shootas to help his Deff Dread force my FC off. This meant his shootas weren't capping, getting more out of my map control. I didn't ever think that I would manage to decap his req point.

Be very mindful of your opponent's implied threats! Not only can they become very real very quickly, they create good temporary positional advantages that can become crushing if not dealt with properly.

11. Vehicle timings and fighting against a vehicle

In the next few sections I want to elaborate on concepts that the original guide only touched upon or implied. Certain playstyles typically cause players to hone certain skillsets that are required for said playstyle. In my case, I go very heavy on power in T1 so I've had to cope with many vehicles when I'm behind in tech.

Apart from the obvious ways to deal with vehicles (like getting soft AV in T1), how exactly do you cope with a fast vehicle? I've seen a lot of people struggle with that in the past, and unsurprisingly fast tech was the fad for ages, as most players don't like the idea of getting to T2 much slower than their opponent.

But say that you just have to cope with it, what now? There are a few stages:

i. Scouting

Scouting is an intrinsic part of any strategy game. Although instinct should be able to let you know that a T2 unit should be coming soon, knowing what T2 unit is going to be coming before it gets to your gens is important. It'll allow you to position your army correctly to receive it, and most importantly protect what map control and gens you have while you catch up in tech. The worst case scenario is that a Deff Dredd walks out of fog and blows up your gens in a second.

Yes, Deff Dredds are hard to stop, but knowing it's coming makes it easier. Toilailee's method of coping with SM is building multiple vengeance round devs. That works, but there's an upgrade duration, and if he's walking it out of fog no amount of devs are going to help you as the devs are unlikely to just be sitting there waiting for the Deff.

ii. Understanding the weakness of the high tier unit

Each unit has a weakness, even high tier ones. T1 units tend to lose to T2 units, that's a given. But that doesn't make T2 units godly.

The most obvious example of this is with walkers. Most walkers (with the exception of the Deff Dredd) are slow, cumbersome, and single entity. Yes, they have splash and/or really good special attacks, but they're still slow AND single entity. That means that they are kited well, and anti-kiting gear tends to be a significant investment (neither the shuriken catapult and assault cannon upgrades are cheap).

As a result, you can kite a 450/100 or whatever investment with cheaper units. If you split up your troops and run them in different ways, he can either chase you, or go for your gens. If he goes for your gens, split up and RAT hard. If he leaves his gens exposed, go for those. If not, decap everything. Put all of your effort into pressuring the opponent to use his walker to chase your troops rather than doing real damage to you.

The Deff, as explained before, is an exception to this. It WILL get more damage done if you are unprepared for it. So against orks, you need MORE scouting, and you need to tech a bit earlier too.

If the opponent brings out, say, a subcommander and T2 wargear and leaders, that's scary. You CAN fight that composition with a T1 army, but the theory is generally the same. RAT when you can't fight, only engage favourably till you catch up in tech. The weakness of your opponent's T2 continuation is that your T1 army isn't lacking in actual counters (unlike vs a vehicle you actually lack AV), so that tech advantage is less pronounced anyway.

Last example. Consider if he goes for transport play. His mobility shoots through the roof, able to hit at your weak spots, flank your positions, pick off isolated units with ease.

Lack of AV altogether hurts here, soft AV serves quite well in general. So you can turtle up with Soft AV and go T2. How you turtle up is based on your opponent's capabilities: has he got easy gen bash? Then you need to stay compact and expand around the area of your natural gen farm. In most cases you'll be happy to trade overall map control for gen safety. If he doesn't, you can RAT and split up more with your more mobile units, but be sure to not let isolated units get picked off by his superior mobility. Either way, the plan is always survive till you catch up in T2, and RAT when possible, and you will generally find that a lone transport isn't enough to rout you completely.

To summarise:

WALKERS can be outmaneuvered and kited;
SUPERIOR T2 TROOPS don't fully exploit the tier difference;
TRANSPORTS can lack the impact of a walker, especially when pressuring gen farms.

Of course, these units are still strong: there's no doubt about it. But the point is the limit the impact of these higher tier units so that it's not GG straight away.

iii. Why go for a vehicle at all?

Considering the weaknesses of these higher tier units that I've given, why go for a vehicle at all? The reality is that this is dynamic compensation rearing its head: their compensation is a larger T1 for your fast T2, so if you somehow don't exploit that advantage they'll come into T2 with a vengeance and crush you off the map. Therefore, going for a fast vehicle forces the fast tech player to be ruthless and accurate in his assault immediately on the arrival of the vehicle.

Forcing a gen bash is great, but this doesn't always stop his counterplay. After all, he could go for a ninja bash and stop your snowballing him out of the game. A balance must be struck between crushing your opponent off the map while threatening the counterbash. This means priority troop types should be forced off (e.g. soft AV, gen bash squads, or key units like scouts), then a gen bash is threatened. This will allow you to get ahead both in map control and initiative, leading to the case where they have to defend their gens with no map control. This is a far more favourable situation than making a beeline for your opponent's gen farm while leaving the entire map uncapped and your own gens exposed.

Of course this is not true in every single case: you may realise he's far from reaching T2 and bash his gens to leave him stranded in T2, which can be sufficient compensation for lagging behind in map control. Use your judgement to figure out what course of action is best.

12. Initiative, Counterplay and Trading Favourably

i. Initiative

There is an extremely important concept in DOW2, or indeed any game, whether it be cards, Chess... with all other things being equal, the player who takes the initiative has a strong edge, which is why it's so important to have the initiative.

A very helpful definition of Initiative comes from Chess, and this captures the idea better than I could ever put it:

"Initiative in a chess position belongs to the player who can make threats that cannot be ignored. He thus puts his opponent in the position of having to use his turns responding to threats rather than making his own. A player with the initiative will often seek to maneuver his pieces into more and more advantageous position as he launches successive attacks.

The player who lacks the initiative may seek to regain it through counterattack."

In DOW2, the idea translates to the fact that if you are constantly making threats and pressuring his power and req points, or his vulnerable back line, or vps... he will always be rushing to defend what he owns rather than making his own threats. Thus there will be little to no pressure on your own position, allowing you to safely and steadily increase your holdings and your advantage.

However, be sure not to overextend. Initiative only works if the threats are sound, otherwise it just becomes overextension. For example, recently I thought I saw a vulnerable T1 ranged ork blob to jump on, in a game against Mathis. I jump in, see there are stormz with Warboss globals, and bail. That retreat cost me the gen farm and the game, but the error came in the overextension, not the retreat itself.

Some of you will be thinking that this is nothing new, and it isn't. Most players I know these days are proactive and do try to make something happen all the time. The key point I want to talk about is Counterplay.

ii. Counterplay

Throughout this guide I've talked about how to make advantages into bigger advantages, and mostly theoretically favourable or even positions. So what about when you're behind? What if your opponent holds the initiative?

Well, as you may have guessed, the answer lies in the chess definition. The player who lacks the initiative may regain it through counterattack, aka counterplay.

Consider this example. If you're pinned back against your gen farm throughout the entire game, you will probably eventually lose. He'll hold all the map control, and possibly take gens. However, if you manage to Ninja bash AND defend, that is a winning proposition for you. Thus, by threatening his gen farm with a lone gen basher, you force him to respond to your counterplay, which has the potential to screw up his game and complicate matters. Do note that this could yet fail: you are weakening your own defence on the promise of a threat. If he can somehow tie up or prevent the gen bash and get your gens you are out of the game, but that's okay, because the scenario was either lose slowly and painfully 100% of the time, or make a counterattack of your own and have a small chance of coming back into the game.

What creating counterplay does is complicate the game. When one player holds a strong advantage, they would prefer to have a very straightforward, simple game. Ideally, his opponent would bring his whole army to bear against his, and headbutt his inferior army against yours in a glorious fight to the death. Ideally all in one spot, as well, thank you very much.

On the other hand, the player who is disadvantaged wants to complicate matters, make things uncertain, throw a spanner in the works. He wants to stretch the game, rat a lot, limit the effectiveness of the enemy army by forcing them to split up chasing ghosts and spending more time running than shooting. He wants to avoid that clear-cut all-in fight for as long as is possible. This is the effect of creating counterplay: your opponent never gets to set up in the ideal crushing deathball of doom on your natural power and VP, or he risks losing a lot to guerrilla tactics of gen bash or sniper attrition.

To summarise: the player who is advantaged wants to suppress counterplay, creating uncomplicated positions where he'll build his advantage safely, whereas the player who is disadvantaged wants to create complicated positions where fights won't happen or any engagements that do aren't clear-cut.

Which leads us onto the next subsection, when considering initiative and counterplay, how do we trade favourably?

iii. Trading favourably

Consider another example: 1v1, on Calderis Refinery. I'm playing SM, I've got a heavy T1 of Tac+ASM, and I've spent about 150 power vs and Ork's 100. I am leading in map control and go for the Ork's gens, thinking he'll come defend. He does not, instead going for the farm trade. Who wins out?

Too often, I see players decide to go for defence rather than taking a trade. They get to their gen farm, only to lose the farm and barely damaging his opponent's army. Occasionally you'll need to make the trade rather than the defence, simply because the defence is doomed to failure or you just won't get there in time. Therefore both players should have some idea in each scenario, who wins out?

In the example, I've gone for a heavier T1 than my opponent, meaning I should have an army advantage. I am putting pressure on my opponent's gens because I want to use my army advantage in T1 to shut him down.

A few factors to consider:

I've spent more power in T1, and thus I'm behind in getting to T2;
He's Orks, who have great gen bashing speed, but so do I with a flamer;
When he gets to T2 there's the enormous threat of the burnas Deff Dredd on my gens;
My T2 AV options are very power heavy- 40 for missile launcher, 25 for Melta bomb, 30 for a whole new Dev+ Lascannon coming in T2, which means the Deff Dredd will be even more crazy;
Therefore my gens are more valuable than his gens;
Therefore I LOSE out in a gen trade

Yes, my gens are worth more than his gens, just because if I lose them, he's getting to T2 far earlier than I am and that's gg.

On the other hand, imagine my opponent was an Eldar. I dislike going for a farm trade, but I have superior gen bash speed, and I can do it with a lone tac while going for a defence of my gen farm, since there will be time to get to my gen farm, even from the centre of the map. Eldar are also very power heavy and don't have a monstrous gen bash threat in T2, and even if I get to T2 late I can rat a bit and cope with their T2 for a little while. Thus this trade is a lot more even and fair for me.

Trading is always dynamic. That means that a unit does not hold a static value. It may have a nominal price, but the reality is that some units scale amazingly and some scale terribly, usually coinciding with being weak out of the gate vs being strong out of the gate. This means that you've got to value targets (and wiped squads) appropriately. For example, tacs are weak early on while giving your opponent quite a lot of bleed, in mid game they really hit their stride, and ultra late game they tend to fall off and become food for all the explosive and plasma damage and monstrous creatures. As such, some wipes will be very high priority and crippling for your opponent, while others they may not feel at all. A common example would be a brightlance cannon being upkeep to your opponent if he doesn't need the AV: in that case he loves the trade of brightlance cannon vs vanilla scouts, even if your scouts are cheaper than his brightlance.

Further, the value of resource points and gens are also dynamic. Some races are req starved past a certain point (e.g. Chaos commonly don't reach T3). In which case bashing their gens might actually have no effect at all. The later the game goes, the less valuable gen bashes become, sometimes to the point that it can constitute a waste of time or the misplacement of key forces. On the other hand, req points scale up in value until they have a very high value as the game drags on, as the reinforcements often come thick and fast and the upkeep gets high.

Trading favourably all game is a strategically sound way to crush a game. If your opponent never trades favourably, he'll never win. This is why it's important to keep some kind of trade calculus going on in your head, to maximise those cases where you do trade favourably. Once you realise that nothing in any game has a fixed value, then you can make accurate judgements as to the value of any trade throughout the game.

13. Ratting

Ratting is a concept that I am borrowing from Dota, as it is a well established concept here. But perhaps even that is too narrow of a definition, and today I feel compelled to expand upon this concept further.

i. Rat

The most basic idea of ratting from Dota is that there is no point competing for what is lost. Instead, perhaps it can be advantageous to gain something elsewhere instead of fighting for a lost cause.

Eldar are great employers of the rat, having access to Fleet of Foot, Webway Gates, and other mobility tools. They are masters at not taking fights that they do not want to take, which can more than offset their relative frailty. As such, a good Eldar can use VPs and map control to endlessly delay a game even though militarily they do not stand a chance, and this can often buy time to make a lategame comeback through a high tier unit. The general idea is that the advantaged player's military advantage is transitory, burdened by population and upkeep. Rushing to T3 makes sense as a counter and is quite power efficient, so long as you have a power farm intact, while your requisition will be sufficient with the lower upkeep. If you can simply hold them off from executing on their advantage, soon their advantage will swing in your favour as their assets become burdens in the late game. Units like the D-cannon and Fire Prisms can be huge late game assets so long as they are protected.

Examples of ratting include:

Pressuring map control points;
Pressuring VPs;
Teleporting over annoying bits of terrain and making enemies chase you/ waste time shooting you;
Making an annoying unit run in and out from behind a LOS blocker so they'll waste time not capping.

If you notice, the common theme is delaying the opponent from doing something useful while not giving up too much in doing so.

(ii) Fighting back (?)

Sometimes, you need to fight back to gain something. You can't dodge them forever, there may be limited to space to work with (these are maps, after all).

Consider the example of a 2v2 on Medean Cliff Mines. Too often you'll see players flailing having lost their gen farms, and pointlessly headbashing on the fortified aggressors, without making any progress. This is a high risk assault with relatively little gain. The reason for this is even if you manage to retake the node, you would still have to invest time and resources into getting a full gen farm up. Meanwhile the enemy team have had their gens up for the entire time you were on the defensive, and your army is in no position to make aggressive movements.

In this case, there can be more to be gained by going where your opponents aren't concentrated: double up the other player, and take direct compensation that way. Sure, they'll probably have a slight lead on power having crushed your power first, but this is less bad than the first scenario. Better that we have the left half of the map than only the top left corner.

Time is a related concept: what you can do is limited by your unit activity and where your forces are concentrated. Accurate judgement of where you belong on the map is based off travel time and the objective being achieved. In the previous example, it takes almost no time to reach your natural node and try to retake it, but the material gain from such an assault is far inferior to what your opponent has. On the other hand, it takes quite a lot of time to double up the other person, but the rewards will be great and often impactful. As always, employ your judgement. What is the optimal balance of time vs material gain?

Another related concept that I want to touch upon is a strategy employed by the Fabian, the Roman dictator who (probably) saved Rome from certain defeat at the hands of Hannibal. His strategy, which angered the Roman people, was based upon the idea that Rome were going to lose every fair fight that the Romans allow. He was too smart to fall straight into the schemes of Hannibal as every Roman general had done before him. His strategy was to avoid fighting and constantly posture around the Carthaginian army.

To quote Wiki: (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fabian_strategy)

"The Fabian strategy is a military strategy where pitched battles and frontal assaults are avoided in favor of wearing down an opponent through a war of attrition and indirection. While avoiding decisive battles, the side employing this strategy harasses its enemy through skirmishes to cause attrition, disrupt supply and affect morale. Employment of this strategy implies that the side adopting this strategy believes time is on its side, but it may also be adopted when no feasible alternative strategy can be devised."


What's instructive was the way Fabian went about this. He knew that Carthage held the army advantage (crazy amounts of blooded veterans) and the leader advantage (Hannibal himself). So he found ways to nullify them: he harassed their scouts, denying them information and forage (removing their scouting and resources, taking easy fights). He never took any fights that Hannibal offered (not playing into the opponent's plan). His army trailed the Carthaginian army, but kept his army on superior terrain or high ground at all times (threatening and controlling the opponent's space, while always maintaining positional superiority).

It was basically genius, and incorporates all the techniques you'd see from a good ratting army: keeping your enemy at arm's length, minimising what they can do, never playing into their hand. Always looking to frustrate them and poke at their weaknesses... in Fabian's case, eventually Hannibal would give up or lose the momentum he needed. In DOW2, you can employ this strategy to get to an impactful game changing unit, or make really crazy comebacks that didn't appear on the cards.

14. Conclusion

All of these principles aim to distill some essence of the strategy of Dawn of War 2. But the real challenge is to take these principles and assimilate them. I’m not telling you what choices to make, but what choices you can make. Particularly sections 3 and 4 are my opinion of how these matchups should work, and these by no means should be taken as the gold standard. There are different strategies which strive for certain advantages, but what stratetgy, compensation and counterplay you aim for is your choice. What you should be doing is expressing yourself and your own playstyle. This guide is a guide, and not a dogma to be followed.

Appendix:

Reinforcing and upkeep
This isn’t really strategy, just a bit of common sense- if you have 2/4 tacs running back to base and the squad hp is 40, don’t reinforce those tacs right away. Let them heal sufficiently first, then reinforce them. It’s a bit more micro, but it’ll save you requisition.

This is thanks to the mechanic known as upkeep. After you reach 30 population, every population over 30 costs you your most expensive population value in requisition income. To clarify, say you have 31 population worth of Guardsmen, plus one Ogryn squad. Then you would pay the whole Ogryn squad’s worth of upkeep plus 1 Guardsmen’s worth.

Due to upkeep, sometimes it is advantageous not to build units until you need them, which will speed up your tech even more. Apart from this, though, there isn’t much else to know about manipulating upkeep- just don’t reinforce squads until you need to.

Healing Faster

If allied bases are close to one another, stand your units in between the bases to benefit from both HQ’s healing auras.
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Batpimp » Tue 18 Mar, 2014 8:11 pm

good job brotha. before the endless criticizing ensues about what you say or don't say in here.

GOOD JOB AND THANKS!
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Atlas » Tue 18 Mar, 2014 11:20 pm

Easy best post of forum. Time well spent.
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Torpid » Wed 19 Mar, 2014 12:11 am

Although rather abstract there's also this guide that summarises a lot of the thought which I would assume is fundamental to team-game-macro: http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=233469847

Spoiler: the comments on which provide no useful insight.
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Crewfinity » Wed 19 Mar, 2014 1:49 am

er mah gerd. this is amazing.

huge props to you codex, this is really helpful stuff :)
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Symetric » Wed 19 Mar, 2014 2:08 pm

My respect and thanks, that was intresting and helpful! Just hope i can use this wisdom ingame properly xD Anyway, gj and im exited to read the WIPs!

(btw... maybe its a stupid question but i never heard RAT before.... what is that?)
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Crewfinity » Wed 19 Mar, 2014 3:46 pm

think guerrilla warfare, running and hiding and fighting everywhere at once but not committing to any engagements.
at least i think that's what he means by it :P
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Codex » Wed 19 Mar, 2014 4:00 pm

Pretty much. The term "rat" I'm bringing over from Dota because it's a well established concept there.

Basically, if you can't fight your opponent head on, there's literally no reason to. But you can't just be passive the entire game, that'll just end with a loss. So the solution to that is to go guerrilla, harry your opponent's forces and their economy and then run away before he gets there to stop you. Doing lots of harassment all over the map will mean that you're constantly taking away his ability to go onto the offensive, in order to buy you time to bring your army/economy up to par, so you no longer have to rat.

That said, some people have been known to rat even when it's not needed... :P
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Cheekie Monkie » Wed 19 Mar, 2014 4:40 pm

TLD...Actually this is really good, gives some food for thought. Nicely done.

Liked, favourited and subscribed!
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Myrdal » Thu 20 Mar, 2014 11:59 am

Great read. I'm assuming this is going up on the main site in a strategy section or something? Because it should along with some improved formatting.
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Batpimp » Tue 25 Mar, 2014 4:37 pm

STICKY STICKY STICKY!
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Belutima » Wed 26 Mar, 2014 11:48 pm

Thank you for the advice, but could you Perhaps put the Chapter Titles in Bold, it's kinda had to keep track of where you are when scrolling.
Or when you only need to read a certain part again.
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Batpimp » Thu 27 Mar, 2014 7:15 pm

Belutima wrote:Thank you for the advice, but could you Perhaps put the Chapter Titles in Bold, it's kinda had to keep track of where you are when scrolling.
Or when you only need to read a certain part again.


another idea that occurred that you could do belu is copy paste into a word document and make changes as you like
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Codex » Mon 31 Mar, 2014 7:36 pm

hakon wrote:Great read. I'm assuming this is going up on the main site in a strategy section or something? Because it should along with some improved formatting.


Thanks hakon.

EDIT: Bolded section headers
EDIT 2: Added Section on Intiative, Counterplay and Trading favourably, still a few paragraphs to go on that one :P
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Lichtbringer » Mon 31 Mar, 2014 10:56 pm

I somehow expected a diffrent aproach to the genbash-trade. I thought because you had the bigger T1 it would be better for you if both gen farms were down, because that would delay T2 by the same amount for both of you. And that means more time for your heavy T1 to dominate him.

Probably I am totally wrong (was just the first thing that came to my mind^^), so I have no problem when you tell me why I am wrong :D
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Codex » Tue 01 Apr, 2014 2:20 am

If the gen trade happens early enough that it severely delays a fast vehicle, then great. It's really up to the timing: often when heavy T1 peaks in strength in T1 the opposition are already teching T2 and often saving up power for their vehicle already.

If the gen trade happens when the fast techer has got about 75 power in the bank then that could favour the heavy T1 player.
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Unconscious » Tue 01 Apr, 2014 3:57 am

Great work Codex I learned alot from these writings when starting. I much prefer the original formatting on the webpage however, this comes across as a block of text.

I learned a little theory but mainly sticking to a race and strategy that is simple to execute, simple to understand and aligns with your personality is the way to go.
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Pega » Tue 01 Apr, 2014 4:45 pm

This is why people should learn from Codex. Very good thread.
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby Codex » Tue 15 Apr, 2014 2:15 pm

I am honoured by your presence.

Will try to write up the final section soon!
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build ord

Postby BaptismByLoli » Tue 15 Apr, 2014 2:20 pm

Why not just post this on Steam guide when its done to get more views?

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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build orders

Postby Sedghammer » Fri 05 Jun, 2015 8:55 pm

Excellent, in-depth guide. I couldn't help but notice how applicable this guide is to the company of heroes series, as many of the strategic elements are similar. I'm just getting back into the mod after a very long hiatus and this post is by far the most interesting on the forum, bravo!
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build orders

Postby Crewfinity » Fri 26 Jun, 2015 6:22 pm

Any plans to finish this up, now that you seem to be (at least for the moment) back? :)
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build orders

Postby Codex » Fri 26 Jun, 2015 6:24 pm

I'm actually looking to do so.

Why are you stalking me? Creeeeepy. :P
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build orders

Postby Cyris » Fri 26 Jun, 2015 7:24 pm

Oh, please do Codex! We miss you!
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Crewfinity
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build orders

Postby Crewfinity » Fri 26 Jun, 2015 10:16 pm

Codex wrote:I'm actually looking to do so.

Why are you stalking me? Creeeeepy. :P


;)
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Codex
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build orders

Postby Codex » Sat 18 Jul, 2015 1:28 am

Alright, the time is now. Last sections being written and finalised, FINALLY :)
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build orders

Postby Codex » Tue 21 Jul, 2015 7:00 pm

EDIT:

More work on the format to make it a better read.
Section 11: Vehicle timings and fighting against a vehicle completed.
Section 12: Initiative, Counterplay and Trading Favourably completed.
Section 13: Ratting added.

I think the major content of this guide is completed. I may find supporting replays and try to record them in a video for instructive material, but by and large I think I've included all the major topics that I wanted to. Hope you guys have found this useful and like the work.

I would encourage people as much as possible to see the connections between the concepts described here in this guide with respect to other games. After all, this guide has largely been inspired by Chess. It is amazing how many of these concepts apply to many RTSs and indeed many forms of competition.
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Codex
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build orders

Postby Codex » Sat 03 Oct, 2015 3:58 pm

Considering that my situation has changed, and I have no time for games, I think that it's time to draw a final line under this guide. I hope many people have benefited from its teachings.

EDIT: Changed preface to be up-to-date. Acknowledged the lack of replays to likely be permanent.

I do hope to come back properly to DOW2, however it has been difficult to juggle priorities. Plus apparently I'll be moderating here longer than I expected- here's hoping.
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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build orders

Postby Toilailee » Sat 03 Oct, 2015 6:47 pm

Codex wrote:Considering that my situation has changed, and I have no time for games...


CODEX IS A LIE!

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Re: Advanced Strategy: Thinking beyond the micro & build orders

Postby Dark Riku » Sat 03 Oct, 2015 6:50 pm

GASP! :O
Eternal Crusade referral code: EC-OZVT4BVATDHX6 (link)

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