Tips for new and old players alike - turn your game around if you're having problems!

Order of Battle is a series of operational WW2 games starting with the Pacific War and then on to Europe!

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steevodeevo
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Tips for new and old players alike - turn your game around if you're having problems!

Post by steevodeevo » Sun Jul 29, 2018 11:03 am

Hi folks,

These are not my tips & suggestions, they are those of fellow players that I have compiled as I was having terrible problems when I increased my difficulty challenge to level 3 from level 2 (default) and couldn't win a battle! I was in despair, considering giving OoB a 'lengthy break' but by applying these principles rigorously I literally turned my game around..

- Unit efficiency: This has been huge. Despite being fully aware of attrition and unit efficiency, I wan't paying anywhere near enough attention to it in my rush against the clock. Resting and rotating units takes a bit of patience and nerve but works wonders.
- Resources works on a positive feedback loop: Try to get off to as good a start as possible. Look at early resource and reward locations and plot a route to them and made sure to grab the reachable ones early with as few losses as possible this gives a good early boost and often puts the AI on the back foot. 'In OoB success breeds success'.
- Making good use of support units and recognising their huge importance: AT and anti-air defence and the importance of artillery. Often I neglected or wasted these units, despite being aware of their complimentary support roles, they take some defending and looking after, however, when you make a conscious effort to back-up your tanks or infantry with AT for support fire, protect your critical units with well maintained AA and ensure you soften up enemy dug-in units with Arty, the difference is significant.
- To beat difficulty 4 or 5, is to focus on reducing enemy efficiency before launching direct engagements: Use of bombardment from artillery, strategic bombers, tactical bombers, ships (if available), etc, to soften up the enemy. It is easy to ignore bombardment when enemy is at 10 strength because an infantry/tank attack already gets the enemy sufficiently weakened, but when the enemy is at strength 12 or 13, reducing efficiency to 6 or 7 is a lot more useful than going for a direct attack immediately.
- Critical! it's so easy to overextend and leave own units in vulnerable positions: When advancing/attacking consider fully where it leaves you afterwards and how exposed you are to the enemy when it's the AI's turn. The AI is keen to gang up on weaker units.
- Knowing this leaves you with a number of opportunities to either:
- expose a aux unit instead of a core unit,
- set up ambushes/AT/AA cover,
- move/attack so the AI does not get so many favourable attack options (from multiple sides vs. one target) against your forward units,
- Look after your precious elite resource points & be selective in their use: It is highly recommend to go with a mix of elite and standard reinforcements to save some in reserve for repairs & replacements. Elite units are not mandatory and an extra new unit could be preferable.
- Play carefully and conserve your experienced units: probe with your Aux units and if you have to undertake a damaging encounter to dig out a stubborn defender, again, use the Aux units wherever possible (after Arty ideally).
- Encirclement & Supply: OoB is ruthless with this, it works beautifully in your favour if you cut off enemies from supply sources, but if you tend to over extend, as I was doing, an out of supply & cut off unit is a dead unit.

As a general observation.... When I was losing badly at level 3 (or apply this to any level) I had to realise that I needed to change the way I played. It became obvious that whilst the basic concepts are the same for all levels, they have to be applied more diligently and rigorously if you are losing to have success.
I think if i'm honest with myself I was playing sloppy, or perhaps rather, playing as I knew would win me a game at difficulty 2. I basically had to raise my game and the level of detail and thought provided in the suggestions gave me the wake up call and re-focus that I needed to snap out of habitual play and raise the bar. This is also a testament to how good a game this is.

13obo
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Re: Tips for new and old players alike - turn your game around if you're having problems!

Post by 13obo » Sun Jul 29, 2018 12:13 pm

This should be a sticky, no? Tips for beginners is often what new players search the forum for in a hard to master game like OOB (example Panzer Corps, Battle Brothers forums).

bebro
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Re: Tips for new and old players alike - turn your game around if you're having problems!

Post by bebro » Sun Aug 05, 2018 11:40 am

Yeah, good idea to sticky it.

TheFilthyCasual
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Re: Tips for new and old players alike - turn your game around if you're having problems!

Post by TheFilthyCasual » Sun Aug 05, 2018 6:48 pm

I have generally taken a hindsight-based, post-WWII view of AT; namely, it's largely irrelevant when you could just have another unit of tanks, which are more versatile, instead. I generally use attack groups of infantry (number varies) following a tank unit and backed by an artillery unit.

I agree on AA, though it can get situational. Actual planes are always better, and since campaigns usually end with you fighting some large epic battle with tons of planes, AA units are mostly useful at the beginnings of campaigns when your forces are weaker, especially if you're on the backfoot (US or Burma campaigns, for example). You probably don't need any more than one light and one heavy AA.

george35
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Re: Tips for new and old players alike - turn your game around if you're having problems!

Post by george35 » Fri Aug 17, 2018 11:28 am

Combining your forces is a must for most scenarios. By this I mean tanks with anti-tank guns, infantry with artillery, both supported with air combat units and do not forget the important recon aircraft to spot the enemy (fighters and bombers can also highlight the enemy but not a good use of their time). Not all units can be spotted by air (ie infantry in a city) but it will stop you running into most hidden units.

Try to keep air units together side by side. Fighters near bombers will defend if the bombers are attacked by enemy fighters. Two fighters together will also help each other. Be careful attacking enemy planes near airfields as there is bound to be an AA nearby. If you can destroy an aircraft squadron in one turn then try it, but if they high tail it out of there weakened, do not chase as you might get hit by AA or another wave of fighters where they fly off to. The weakened squadron will take time and resources to reappear.

Terrain is equally important. Infantry in woods are good for ambushes and do not leave them in open terrain too often as they may not defend well especially by tanks. Be careful charging down roads to grab a city; there is bound to be an infantry unit, tank or bunker on the way. Moving infantry through thick woods might be an option depending on objectives, but this will be slow and will tire the units. Rivers and bridges tend to offer little protection so try to go around and attack a city near a river from behind.

Engineer units are a must especially if mines are present. If in a defensive scenario, I mine major cities that I need to hold as AI generally will not defuse them. If they do try to do this, try and spot the engineer unit and either destroy it or seriously weaken it.

Unit supply, as mentioned, is a must and try to rotate units so that weakened or low supply units can stop and recover whilst fresher ones take over, even if just to defend and hold.

If you have the resources, after each turn, if you can upgrade your units then do so. They will fight better than the "older" versions. With tanks, do not always think that an upgrade to the latest tank will be beneficial. This is especially true for the German Panzers. Some of the older versions will have good all round attack and defensive capabilities against armour and infantry. Try to build a range of tanks to suit your needs, some good at destroying armour, some good all rounders, you never know what you are going to meet!

Getting the slower moving units (engineers and heavy infantry) into trucks will get them into the battle quickly whilst the infantry can walk. Be careful you do not drive into unknown territory though or leave them exposed in the trucks, especially if fighters or bombers are nearby.

May sound obvious to some but all of the items mentioned here have helped me.

GabeKnight
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Re: Tips for new and old players alike - turn your game around if you're having problems!

Post by GabeKnight » Fri Aug 17, 2018 12:50 pm

Agree with most of the above posts.
AT support's kind of important to weaken the enemy units. The enemy's "alpha stike" will hurt anyway, but you end up in a way better position on your next turn to attack.

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george35 wrote:
Fri Aug 17, 2018 11:28 am
Two fighters together will also help each other. Be careful attacking enemy planes near airfields as there is bound to be an AA nearby. If you can destroy an aircraft squadron in one turn then try it, but if they high tail it out of there weakened, do not chase as you might get hit by AA or another wave of fighters where they fly off to. The weakened squadron will take time and resources to reappear.
1.) Two fighters will NOT support each other when attacked
2.) The "chasing a weakened plane" situation can be viewed very differently depending on the AI's per turn income (esp. with custom campaigns/scens). Air dominance is important and you definitely do not want the AI to repair them and to have to deal with full-health dogfighters anew. In the end it's rather "cheaper" to pursue and finish them off and risk a few damages to your planes by enemy AA.

It's similar to efficiency. Someone else mentioned this already in another thread lately, but I couldn't find it:
After you've dealt enough efficiency damage to the enemy, you just CAN NOT let this unit recover until it's killed. Even if that means to fire with arty, that's already in the red, use a dogfighter's strafe run or use otherwise weak units (recon vehicles are perfect for this).
Again, this approach is heavily dependent on the AI's RP income, but if you let such unit rest, recover and repair, all your attacks and losses up until that point meant nothing...

george35
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Re: Tips for new and old players alike - turn your game around if you're having problems!

Post by george35 » Fri Aug 17, 2018 1:25 pm

Hi GabeKnight,

In my experience the fighters have assisted each other in defending against an attack from another fighter but perhaps this was in just some of the campaigns or scenarios and not all; so apologies if I am misleading people here.

I agree with the destroying the unit completely, but I have found that keeping your air squadrons at a decent strength, especially at the first few turns of a scenario, helps to keep them available for waves of air attacks/bombings. But as you say, depends on the scenario and of course the fighter.

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