Defense is something you want to have some form of even if you are planning on being on the offensive. You never know when your enemy will pull a surprise invasion and suddenly your base is left unguarded with enemy units there. If you are playing mainly offensive in a game, leave a few bunkers, AA, AT, and infantry at your base.
If you are playing defensive in a game, then here are a few tips.
- Don't put a lot of units close to each other. If the enemy can sneak some bombers through any AA or fighters you have, they can easily wipe out many of these units in 1 bombing run. Artillery can also target these units and fire on them.
- Use bunkers in strategic locations. Don't put bunkers just anywhere they can go. Put them in places like across bridges or rivers, on the other side of forests and towns, etc.
- Always put AA, AT, and Infantry in town squares and forests. If you don't, the enemy can see them and use bombers and artillery. If you do put them in forests and towns, then they will be hidden and the enemy will either have to waste units or use recon.
- Use Recon! This one is the most important. Recon will let you know how many units an enemy has and where they are. This will allow you to adjust your strategy if needed. Recon can also allow bunkers to fire at their max range since a bunker needs to identify the unit before firing and most units seem to be able to fire on the bunker before a bunker can fire on it.
Airforce and Artillery
Air force and Artillery can make or break and offensive and defense. I've had many games where the enemy launches a major offensive but they either don't use their arty or planes in properly. Most mistakes I have seen is the enemy using their arty and/or planes before an offensive and then calling them back before attacking which gives a defender time to rebuild. The proper way to use planes and arty would be in a combined offensive with their tanks and infantry. The best way to do this would be to start and artillery barrage and while they are firing, send your tanks, infantry, and planes at the same time. This will maximize the damage your opponent gets and will give them almost no time to rebuild and sometimes no time to react.
In a defensive game, the best way to use artillery would be to barrage the enemy units before they reach your units so they will be weaker and will potentially have less men to attack with. Use bombers to destroy bases and supply depots to limit their production capabilities which limit the number of units they can use. This tactic also helps for playing offensive but defensive will probably use it the most. Fighters would be more important in a defensive game because they will allow you to stop bombers before they can do a lot of damage. Fighter-Bombers will also be good for helping pick off enemy tanks and infantry during an assault.
Another thing about Airforce. Never send your planes straight from the airfield to a target. This allows them to be picked off one by one. Instead the best thing to do is have them move to a position above your base and have them circle there until they have all taken off. Then select them and have them move to the target. This allows them to stay in a formation and AA will have a hard time taking them all out.
When planning on attacking the enemy, the first thing you have to do is recon enemy positions and strong points. once you have an idea of the type of units and defenses you will be going up against. Plan accordingly. Don't send a few infantry to attack a Maginot bunker. Instead send a few tanks and maybe have some bombers or artillery waiting incase needed. If you are going against someone who has built up a massive fortified line of bunkers, AA, AT, and other units. The best option would be a Combined Offensive against a section of the fortified line. A combined offensive also works if both players (or maybe the enemy bot) is also going offensive and no defense. If this is the case, follow this guide still but you may need to adjust plans rapidly incase of a counter attack or they launch an offensive. Anyways, back to fighting a fortified enemy. Never attack the entire fortified area at once. If you do your units can become overstretched leading to only a few units attacking an area instead of alot.
The first step in any good offensive will be to move your units into place. To prevent the enemy from learning of where you will attack, use radio silence to hide your force and move some spare units into another area to think you are attacking there. Once you have finished moving units, or maybe while moving units, bring some artillery up but keep it slightly out of range to prevent firing in an area and potentially giving away where you will attack. Once you are ready to attack, get some bombers into the sky (the recommended amount of bombers and artillery you need depends on what you are against.) until they are all circling above. Now, to get the most amount of damage to the enemy, move the arty in range first. Once they start firing, tell your army to move up and as soon as possible, tell your planes to bomb a target (if you don't want to tell each plane or group of planes what to bomb, turn on auto target buildings and just tell them to move above the enemy). Hopefully the enemy defenses will have crumbled and you can move units into their base.
A few notes:
- If you are not sure your army will be able to push through before reinforcements arrive or are worried about just not being able to break through in the first place, have some airborne drop behind enemy lines in towns and forests. The airborne will most likely die but if they can drop, they can halt reinforcements for a bit and even cause chaos to an enemy army.
- Make sure to also use ruse's to help in an attack. The best ones would probably Terror and the Fight to the death one that I have forgotten the name of (I'll eventually get around to changing that to its name)
- If you suspect the enemy knows your plans, try launching a fake offensive (not the ruse) in some other part of the front so the enemy thinks that you will attack there. If that fails, then change plans entirely.
- If both players are playing an offensive game with no one building defenses, then if an offensive isnt going well, call it off and pull units back. If you don't, the enemy can counter-offensive and wipe out your remaining forces.
A Few Other Things
Here are a few other things you can do.
- If the enemy has a supply depot where the trucks pass through a forest or a town and it looks like that forest or town is undefended, try dropping a few airborne units in there and have them disrupt their supply lines. It's probably a suicide mission but if they get a few less dollars then it takes them slightly more longer to make units. And you never know, maybe you can disrupt it enough that their economy collapses and you can easily attack and win.
- You can also try using airborne to take the depot for yourself. Yeah most likely none of the trucks will make it back across the front lines and to your HQ, but it does mean the enemy has to spend resources to counter this and take it back.
- You can also use bombers to disrupt and even destroy supply depots.
- You can use airborne and bombers to take/destroy enemy buildings which means they have to spend more resources to counter these attacks.
- Never do an assault with only infantry or only tanks. always have 1 of each for any attack (unless in forests or an area that is to risky like pushing through a town where the tanks can be ambushed).