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Any and all CAV Tactics

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Any and all Tactics.


I looked through most of these threads of Wisdom, and noticed there are not many post on tactics...

Some of you Seasoned Veterans have got some activeness in games that could prove worthy of Tactics writing.


Come on, don't be shy...

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I really don't wanna be schooled in the "School of Hard Knocks".

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The school of hard knocks is actually the best place to learn.


To quote and old saying " Any good plans goes to h*ll as soon as it meets the enemy"


Personally I like to make up the tactics on the fly. I start with a general plan or objective and then adjust the units in the battles to help make it work out.


The only sound tactic is that you can never have enough firepower and horsepower.

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Most of my "experience" with mecha combat has come from computer games like Earthsiege2. Perhaps it doesn't really apply so much to CAV.


1) Leave the more sophisticated weaponry to your wingmates. Give yourself the cheap weapons that pour on light but reliable firepower. I tend to favor the lighter autocannons with longer ranges. Do damage to the enemies while they're still trying to figure out where you are and how to get to you.


2) Learn how to effectively retreat and the charges will come easy. Make 'em pay for the ground so you can foreclose cheap.


3) Mao had the right idea...kill the movers first and the slowpokes (and sticks-in-the-mud) later. Mobility is an asset to you and a pain-in-the-fanny when used against you.


4) Always have something in your arsenal to kill flyers. Even when they aren't on the menu.


5) The high ground is always the best ground. Which is why you have to kill flyers.


6) Buddy System. Have your cones of fire overlap your mates'. Enemies don't last very long when they got multiple threats to face.


7) No Guts, No Glory...No Duh. :)

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It also depends entirely on your play style - some people like swarm assaults, some like to have fewer (but better) CAVs with more upgrades than their opponents.


Personally, I like to have a section or two of hard hitters, a section or two of aircraft and tanks, a couple sections of infantry, and some good indirect capability. If points permit, I'll have some of the cheaper CAV.


The hard hitters weaken the toughest opposition - preferrably from out of the opposition range. The tanks, aircraft and cheaper CAV all exist to perform mop-up duty - there is no point in wasting a D2 on a Duellist on it's last track when you can use something else instead.


The infantry (and usually either aircraft or ground vehicles) exist to kill other soft targets - missile-equipped infantry is one of the easiest ways to kill certain CAV, and you'll want something to keep them off your Dictators.


Trial and error - and try each army build more than once. I have seen people scrap perfectly viable armies after a game in which their dice were so poor that they couldn't have won under any circumstances.

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Hmmm... while tactics do vary from player to player and is relatively dependent upon playing styles, the tactics listed below have proven to be succesful regardless of opposition:


1. Concentrate the section's firepower on 1 or two targets maximum. This usually ensures massive damage or destruction of the target unit.


2. When possible, take your shots from behind cover to maximum armor bonuses. 1 or 2 points make a difference when getting hit, especially during defensive fire.


3. Since we don't pre-measure (in our area)... get good at triangulating or at least remembering distances previously measured on the board. This helps you get those perfectly ranged shots where you OUTrange the target and receive no defensive fire.


4. KNOW YOUR FOE. It's well worth the effort to understand what opponents' units can and can't do at certain levels of damage. e.g.: front loaded units like the Dictator and Assassin are mere dandy lions after DT3 (relatively speaking compared to type II or type III degrading units).


5. DON'T... I repeat DON'T let yourself get SANDWICHED between other players. Find a way to get another opponent between you and the 3rd or 4th players.


6. It's not necessarily a tactic rather more an observation... Getting target lock seems to make a world of difference for doing damage to units. Personally, I prefer to take the fight to my opponent "offensively" to gain that advantage instead of hanging around in turtle mode.



Well... obviously this is debatable but if nothing else... consistently using #1, #2, and #5 above will help you survive longer and increase your chances for success.


After that... yeah, you do need to learn through trial and error and asking questions. More importantly, be AWARE of what's occurring so the light has a chance to click on. And if you're still not sure... read my signature. ::D:

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Well since no one else has mentioned it... "Rolling Thunder"

Get several Conquerors and/or Sovereign IIIs and go nuts with their IFMs. You'll get about a 5 foot range with an area of effect damage (4 inches for the Conqueror and 2 inches for the Sovereign). It is devasaiting to soft targets and it'll weaken hard. The best part is they have to be in range to use defensive fire on you.


Dirty tricks are the best tricks... :devil:

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With regards to Rolling Thunder... I don't think you realize that in the long run IFM is typically less effective. Unless you have very well upgraded TL systems and WSO's, the odds of applying much damage are reduced.


Against soft targets it doesn't take very many hits because they usually have fewer DT's than most hard target units. Any smart player will negate your template of splash damage by spacing out, and as a result you've invested how many points to take try and take out one base of infantry, etc. Versus hard targets, the damage done is usually lower than what you'd get from a direct fired shot (but there is the benefit of negating pilot upgrades). But the higher number of DT's to work through usually mean you won't significantly hurt the unit. The only unit I've seen have sweet success with IFM against hard targets is the Sultan.


But here in lies the problem... With any IFM shots, if you don't get TL then the shot drifts and it's not often that it drifts onto something else and actually does damage. Even if you did get a TL it still is ONLY one shot and one dice roll only for damage. At least with direct fire you get to still roll your multiple damage dice regardless of getting/missing TL.


Trying to win a game on IFM tactics alone... well, I have yet to see it work. Don't forget, the table is going to shrink very quickly as the opponent advances on you and then what do you have... their strength against your weakness. This is not to say there isn't some merit to dropping bombs from a safe distance, but when it comes down to it... gotta get up close and personal.

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The object of Rolling Thunder is not the complete dustruction of yer opponent before S/He reaches you... Its porpose is to soften them up so yer OTHER units can clean up. So yeah if you go for a straight IFM battle force yer asking for a @$$whoopin' :wacko: . No matter what tactics a person would use a well balanced force (the yin/yang Principle) would be a must. Long and short range... hard and soft targets... apples and oranges (and sometimes bananas)... obviousily I should have made this more clear in my earlier post... <_< And while the IFM won't do much against a Rhino other then ruin its paint job it can do a little damage to lesser CAVs like Pumas and Spartans. Don't underestimate artillery fire especially in mass numbers :poke:


As for the IFM drifting, a good wizzo would conceder this in his attack. If you know the missles are going to drift its best to act accordingly. Also this is where Area of effect comes in handy giving you a better chance of reaching an enemy unit. But if a TL is that important to you a spotter could easily be sent in as a replacement for one of the IFM units.


Hopefully, I was more clear this time...


One more thing... I find it kind of interesting that you would mention using Mortar teams... hmmmm... that's kind of like Rolling Thunder ::P:

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I've found IDF most useful for controlling the flow of battle. Not as the knockout punch, but to force them to move.


Another CAV tactic worth remembering is to use the move/fire/move option when possible. Deny opponents the oppertunity to target lock with their direct fire weapons by dancing around a building or whatever. If the only shots someone's taking are defensive fire, you will have an advantage.

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I generally use IFM as a threat, rather than considering it as an actual offensive attack. By having a section of dedicated IFM, you are forcing your opponent to spread their forces (at least the soft ones), and you can still target one or two of them in a turn.


IFM an do a lot to the weaker CAVs, as Saint noted. I generally target my IFM in this order: massed soft targets, dedicated IFM CAV , individual soft targets (in order of threat), recon or other light CAV (anything with armor of +2 or less), damaged CAV.


The reason is this: massed soft targets means the most bang for your buck. The burst from many of the larger IFMs can easily do a point of damage or two to everything in the burst template. Dedicated IFM CAVs have lighter armor, and shutting down opposing IFM means that my soft sections can group more effectively. Recon CAV are fast, but easy to kill - their main threat is typically either to soft targets, or because they carry an ECCM pod/Chain Lock pod. Either one is worth shutting down. And finishing off a damaged CAV is worth it, but not when I have more combat-cabable units coming at me.


Besides, recon CAV and wounded are generally left to the Chieftans, Ghasts, etc.

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Someone mentioned using aircraft to mop up after the hard hitters weaken an opponent. I sometimes do the opposite.


The biggest key for me though is concentration of fire. Pick the most dangerous model on the board and concentrate fire on that model until it's toasted or ineffective. Finish off opponents, don't just let them roam around trying to take lucky shots. They'll get em, the law of averages says so. Fewer full strength guns is definitely better than twice as many half strength guns.

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It's worth mentioning that while the following concept is probably realized by most, it very often is not carried out.


People need to develop a greater sense of awareness.


I see some evidence of this in these posts. I think if players would literally set out with a goal in mind and then play to that end while taking careful notes of what occurs as a result, he would really learn some things.


example... my next few games I am literally going to field nothing but IFM specialist CAV units. So, throughout the game, determine what the opponent is doing and hypothesize why he is doing that? Perhaps ask the opponent afterwards to get some feedback. Ask yourself questions like: how effective was my IFM barrage against this type target versus that type target? Did my opponent move that unit there and this unit here because of my force composition? Did I get the desired effect I was looking for? Did I stick with the strengths of my units or get sidetracked? What dictated the flow of the game?


Sitting down with "CLEAR" objectives in mind then jotting down some notes about what transpires is a GREAT way to learn. I have to remind myself to do this to actually learn something, otherwise it just goes right over my head.

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