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Capturing 3-point bases

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  • Capturing 3-point bases

    Three point bases, especially towers like Crimson Bluff, are notoriously difficult to take. With three points to cover, you're forced to choose between splitting your force and covering all of them--exposing you to defeat in detail--or leaving points undefended for the enemy to resecure to halt the capture. A compromise we've often done is to only hold the two easiest points of the base and attempting to siege the tower, taking as a tradeoff a timer that is three times as long. Unfortunately, 20 minutes is more than enough time for the enemy to rally and push us off. As a result, these bases usually result in an attacking force entrenching, getting overwhelmed, and then getting pushed back by resurgent defenders. As such, the accepted wisdom is that you need substantially superior numbers (or a solid siege with aircraft and tanks) to pull off a capture on a base like this.

    Tonight, while leading the 4-squad TG platoon (!!!) across Indar, I tried out a different approach, and I feel it's an effective one.

    These bases typically have a single capture point (usually the Alpha CP) that is even more difficult to take than normal, usually by virtue of being obnoxiously close to the enemy spawn and in defensible terrain (I expect the designers have consciously designed it as the defender's "holdout" point). The approach I am advocating is to focus our efforts on taking and holding that point as long as possible, once the exterior points are secure, even at the expense of leaving defending forces on the exterior points.

    The benefit of this approach is that we get to exploit our population advantage as long as possible and to greatest effect, and that we serve as a focusing point for enemy forces in the hex. If the A point is captured defenders will usually focus on it in order to re-establish their most easily defended point, as much due to proximity and strength of their nearby spawn options as for the tactical advantage. What normally happens is that a split up force will maintain control of the point initially, when enemy population is low, but will quickly find themselves undermanned as the population equalizes--too many of their allies are outside, and ALL their enemies are coming at them. However, if our entire force is concentrated on this point, instead of facing an undermanned force trying to hang onto the point against increasingly hopeless numbers, they're now facing our full strength. They will not be able to unroot us without a force that begins to approach ours in size.

    The proximity of the spawn will make this an extraordinarily difficult point hold once population gets anywhere near to equal, thanks to the close spawn point and focused enemy effort. Once the population equalizes (indeed, even once they hit 40% population), we're almost certainly going to lose that holdout point. However, it usually takes a long time for the enemy to really respond in force, especially if they're counting on a last second surge in population to defend a base, and that gives us a huge amount of time holding all three points in the base, and keeping the most challenging point on utter lockdown.

    This is huge. With three points held, the capture timer drops to 7 minutes for the entire base, and every moment that we resist their resecure of the Alpha CP is worth three seconds of holding the exterior points. Even if we lose it as the population equalizes, we'll have bought ourselves a lot of time and then we may only need to hold the exterior points for a couple minutes in order to seal the capture. Those outer points can more easily be secured by air and armour assets, allowing more time to be bought.

    The caveat to this is that you need to have a substantial force advantage at the outset, making it as difficult as possible to overwhelm your force quickly. With four squads to our name tonight, we were in the right weight range to pull this off, though I think this could work to a large degree with two squads, maybe less. I don't believe this is an effective way to manage one of these fights if the populations quickly equalize or were even from the outset. In those cases, a more traditional siege while holding two points is a better bet.

    To summarize, the basic idea is this: in order to mitigate the challenge of maintaining a lock on three points at once, and to maximize the time we have to run the timer down, put overwhelming focus on the most difficult to capture CP. It will draw enemies towards you, indirectly protecting the other points, while simultaneously concentrating your troops enough to sustain the attack for as long as possible in those tough positions.


  • #2
    Re: Capturing 3-point bases

    Personally, I tend not to attack the Tower often because it doesn't lend itself to tactical play. It's like a biolab where you can choose to grab 2 points and still win without setting foot inside. I'll do it if I must, but I'm also aware of providing my squadmates with a TG experience and, indeed, myself. If other players would like to try more often that's up to them and they should SL.

    Any unorganized zerg can spam the Tower into a win. Retaining tactical control in such cramped conditions puts too much pressure on the SL. With fireteam leaders there would certainly be more we could do, such as covering different angles and using LA teams.

    I like the Towers where they put the SCU inside instead of a CP, that makes far more sense and leads to better gameplay.

    As for other 3 points bases, it's a good idea, but be mindful of the size of the building you're covering. Warehouses are an excellent addition to the game and we can put multiple squads in those.

    An alternative is to have some squads taking up positions that intercept the enemy between their Spawn Room and the CP. I believe the reasoning is in another thread here, but in short because the enemy are more spread out, don't expect it, are moving, less cover etc. Also, blueberries will naturally hold the point anyway.

    |TG-Irr| MrJengles - You know you want to say it out loud.


    • #3
      Re: Capturing 3-point bases

      before attacking a 3 point base, I usually ask commend if anyone outfit can assist. More outfits have been answering my request. I tell them what we are doing, for example I'll type. "TG is attacking crimson bluff, gal dropping two squads on B have one squad providing air support, requesting help with the other two points. Another outfit will answer saying We have two squads where do you need us." Then we'll work together from there by this time other outfits will want to help out also.


      • #4
        Re: Capturing 3-point bases

        ^^^ Seeing stuff like that its beautiful man!
        -Sheds manly tear...


        • #5
          Re: Capturing 3-point bases

          Most people in command channels want to coordinate large scale battles, after all that is what separates PS2 from pretty much every other game out there.

          Sure there are a couple trolls in there, but just mute/ignore them and don't let them ruin your fun.

          Everyone who squad leads should have command channel certed ASAP, and keep an ear in there, especially during alerts.
          "The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it." - George Bernard Shaw


          • #6
            Re: Capturing 3-point bases

            Focusing your forces on the most difficult CP doesn't mean you need to cram your people on top of it. As you say, Jengles, I usually prefer to intercept them en-route. Or, in a base like Howling pass, two squads holding the line at the point (one above, one below) worked pretty well, and I could see that drastically improving with an air squad running overwatch of the approach or a squad on high ground or one of the towers shooting incoming attackers in the side.

            In a tower it's unavoidable, but you can still set up some pretty effective killzones. It's grindy and painful, but what we can do in those situations that a zerg can't is maintain more cohesion and cover our angles better. Blues don't usually cover their flanks in a tower, and it costs them dearly in terms of light assault flanks that destabilize or wipe important positions.

            This strategy doesn't work in a Bio Lab because there's no central point to hold; the closest analogy is going for the SCU. The intended use case is against a base with a low enemy population and a dominant CP to command their attention with. In many ways this is a lot like the staggered deployment strategy we've used to assault low-pop single point bases; it's about mitigating a mass redeployment. The difference is that this is about concentrating force to delay the enemy force equalization from making a hold untenable instead of reducing apparent population to lock out the redeploy spawns and feint the enemy into not recognizing the full size of the force.

            Combining the two might make for an interesting experiment. This requires a larger force size to pull off than the staggered drops on single point bases--for them, the tactic became viable at two squads--but running larger platoons might make this something worth employing. In fact, with a full platoon, we can push two lanes of single point bases at once, and then regroup for pushing down a stronghold, at least until the enemy responds in force with something OTHER than a redeploy.




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