Attacking at favorable time of day

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Noxos
Posts: 19
Joined: February 20th, 2013, 2:36 pm

Attacking at favorable time of day

Post by Noxos » May 2nd, 2013, 2:35 am

An issue I've been having, in 1v1 especially is how to make my opponent be forced to fight me during a time favorable to me. Often we just both retreat as soon as dusk/dawn hits and neither of us manages to really fight. How can you force your opponent to have to face you when it suits you? It's less an issue with a faction like loyalists because you have great mobility, but with a race like undead it is hard since the only mobile units you have are ghosts and bats. Ghosts seem rather expensive to throw away on blocking a retreat and bats don't really have the HP to be able to block a retreat plus they don't affect ZoC.

Anyone got any tips?

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Marche
Posts: 20
Joined: December 21st, 2012, 11:41 pm

Re: Attacking at favorable time of day

Post by Marche » May 12th, 2013, 9:22 pm

Depends on how your opponent plays. Typically I notice it is one of two styles: they retreat as their time of weakness grows, or it's a relative standstill on all fronts with nobody wanting to walk into no man's land.

If it's the first, you're in luck - attack them early. It may seem like a bad idea to attack when they're strong, but if you attack Undead with Loyalists on second night they have to weigh returning the attack and hurting your forces against retreating against the coming day change. If they retreat, congrats, you get the small advantage that you should use to turn the tides by cementing some units on valuable terrain. But at this point, it's pretty much down to particular units; do you have leveled units spearheading and on the vulnerable squares? If you've got enough of an advantage, including possible next-turn back up for when the day is changed, then you might just force them to retreat. This is all considering you've been planning an attack like this, shuffling high-experience units in to tank, et cetera.

If it's at a standstill, things are harder. Is it worth it to try some kind of gambit? Throw away some units to make a front look weak, but have stronger units on hand and try to make a pincer on the incoming forces? If the situation is truly even, it's probably down to the matchup and the map. Most maps have exploitable areas, and matchups have specific weaknesses/resistances that can be used to your advantage. I guess what I'm saying here, unless you're working on a boring mirror map with the same factions, you probably aren't at a true standstill, and the tides will turn with whoever has better strategy or whoever makes a mistake first.

I think the justification for slower units is that their resistances/counterattacks are better, meaning they can afford to cover that ground slower and overall present the same threat, only more prolonged. I find a hoard of a handful of skeletons and five corpses more scary on open ground than two horsemen, for example, even though the horsemen are more individually dangerous. The ghosts are the most situationally useful unit in the Undead, and sometimes they're just like more expensive bats for how much combat they see. For an Undead advance, I like to have 2-3 skeletons or ghouls (skele archers only against a pure-blades collection, etc.) per DA, more or less of each depending on the terrain, and if it's mid-to-lategame I appreciate a WD or two hanging around to mop up during the night. Undead are more offensive that way, in how they rarely bother to circle around and utilize ZoC but just overwhelm in waves.

(I know this is old, but the topic is worth explaining. And if I got it wrong here, there should be valuable discussion!)
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Noxos
Posts: 19
Joined: February 20th, 2013, 2:36 pm

Re: Attacking at favorable time of day

Post by Noxos » May 16th, 2013, 9:05 am

Great tips thanks, anyone else got anything to add :)?

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Aelaris
Posts: 77
Joined: January 21st, 2010, 3:22 am

Re: Attacking at favorable time of day

Post by Aelaris » May 28th, 2013, 5:39 am

Scouts and other fast units, plus skirmishers: Use them. Right before your opponent is going to leave for the night (or day), get someone around to block off a unit or two. Sure, they can kill the scout, but then they would be wide open during the wrong time of day. Otherwise they have to run away, and a unit or two is easy pickings and your scout is okayish.

Also be fearless during ToD superiority. You know they aren't willing to pick a fight with you, and so long as they don't pick a fight, you're invincible. Come dawn, charge forward freely. If they want to pick a fight, well that's their problem. Otherwise you're just faster, since you don't need to worry about defensive terrain and the like.


Now, for undead in particular: Ghosts can be used to corner people before they retreat - unless you're blocking a unit that is specifically good against ghosts, a ghost isn't going to be dying anytime soon. And if they don't die, they don't cost you.

Remember that assault teams with a pair of DAs and a pair of Skeletons are fine for attacking - even if they fully jump your DAs during the night, they are still going to have a Bad Time against the skeletons' counter attack. DAs aren't mages, they aren't some coddled 20 cost unit. They are the 16 gold bread and butter of the Undead, killing their cost before dying horribly. Feel free to get messy, put them in danger during the night, whatever.

This is not a general strategy you should do, but a fun exercise for feeling this out is to conceptualize DAs as nothing more than suicide bombers - they exist to deal as much damage as possible during the night. Don't worry about them surviving at all, just play surviving long enough to maximize their damage. Then you'll see the limits of when this is a bad idea, and can adjust from there.

But mostly just use your ghosts. They are invincible if people aren't willing to dedicate the effort to kill them.


Oh, and lastly - if you can, go for their villages with whatever. Many players aren't willing to spend the whole night with you controlling one of 'their' villages, and will try to fight it off, even given the wrong ToD. And then you can fight them when they come for their village. Or, you know, just chill out on a village and get money. That's not bad either.
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