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russian armor

High level Knowledge on Balance - tournament

17 Jan 2022, 10:49 AM
#1
avatar of Esxile

Posts: 3424 | Subs: 1

In tournanment we always see the same match up, Ostheer vs Soviet and this meta goes around since quite some time when Ostheer was still top pick with OPstruppen vs USF OPijeep and at that time it was clearly obvious why anyone would pick them.

From Those TOP tournament players perspective, what's the reason of the current sitation or more specifically:

Excluding the usual answer, Soviet is better/Ostheer is better... Today,

How and why do you think Ostheer is superior to USF so you rather avoid picking the later in tournament.
How and why do you think Ostheer is superior to UKF so you rather avoid picking the later in tournament.
How and why do you think Soviet is superior to OKW so you rather avoid picking the later in tournament.


In the past even if Soviet could be better than USF or UKF, that didn't stopped top players to play with different factions even if their favorite was slighly less capable than another. Today Tournament organizers have to impose rotations so we get to see more variety.

Another point that make me think about it is the variety of commanders pick. We're not facing the same scenario OPstruppen vs OPijeep anymore, Top players are using a rather large variety of commanders so is it possible that even with a similar variety of commanders others factions can't cope with Ostheer and Soviet? There isn't a single commander in USF/UKF/OKW that make it for competing at high level with their counterparts?
17 Jan 2022, 13:07 PM
#2
avatar of MassaDerek

Posts: 136

jump backJump back to quoted post17 Jan 2022, 10:49 AMEsxile
In tournanment we always see the same match up, Ostheer vs Soviet and this meta goes around since quite some time when Ostheer was still top pick with OPstruppen vs USF OPijeep and at that time it was clearly obvious why anyone would pick them.

From Those TOP tournament players perspective, what's the reason of the current sitation or more specifically:

Excluding the usual answer, Soviet is better/Ostheer is better... Today,

How and why do you think Ostheer is superior to USF so you rather avoid picking the later in tournament.
How and why do you think Ostheer is superior to UKF so you rather avoid picking the later in tournament.
How and why do you think Soviet is superior to OKW so you rather avoid picking the later in tournament.


In the past even if Soviet could be better than USF or UKF, that didn't stopped top players to play with different factions even if their favorite was slighly less capable than another. Today Tournament organizers have to impose rotations so we get to see more variety.

Another point that make me think about it is the variety of commanders pick. We're not facing the same scenario OPstruppen vs OPijeep anymore, Top players are using a rather large variety of commanders so is it possible that even with a similar variety of commanders others factions can't cope with Ostheer and Soviet? There isn't a single commander in USF/UKF/OKW that make it for competing at high level with their counterparts?


Soviets don't have a lack of options for certain units unlike UKF and USF(no rocket arty and weaker indirect).UKF is supposedly very predictable in what they will play like, USF has a hard time late game due to their trash ATG and squishy armor.

OST is ofc the most powerful faction in the entire game, insanely overtuned with the best support equipment and ontop of that have cheap reinforce 6 man Ostruppen that favor turtling whilst also having a weapon upgrade.Meanwhile dedicated "effective anti-infantry squad" like the Penals don't get weapon upgrades to scale better late game.

Almost every OST commander is also viable, unlike a lot of allied commanders.And obv it takes the least amount of micro to play OST efficiently, even less so than OKW.
17 Jan 2022, 13:50 PM
#3
avatar of Hannibal
Senior Moderator Badge

Posts: 2745 | Subs: 2

Not that I could speak of top tournament level play from experience, but my two cents:

First, we mostly saw especially USF and UKF in tournaments when they had one single strategy for rushing. Either the Jeep/Cav rifle or the UC into AEC combo.
Second, I somehow have the feeling that balancing has shifted a bit away from focusing on 1v1 like the first patches did to rather 2v2 and 3v3. This allowed removing or at least toning down some of the "gimmicks" that made those factions strong to compensate the gaps in their line up. But this might be just a confuse feeling since I can't really think of specific examples. However, I am under the impression that the removal of gimmicks coupled with still having glaring gaps in line up lead to DLC factions being overall worse in 1v1. They were always predictable, but now their predictable path is not as strong anymore. In team games, missing units can be compensated by team mates so they are not AS serious as in 1v1. You can still focus fully on your faction's strengths. I can also imagine that the "one dimensional" design of UKF/USF/OKW leads to very clear counters. You only have 1-2 strategies that you can play, and if you have a good opponent he will know how to give you a hard time.

Lastly, there might be a psychological factor: Soviets and Ostheer are the safest bets because they do not lack any tools. Knowing to have all options at hand relieves pressure when you can actually win something. Why take options away from yourself when you actually don't have that much benefit from it?
17 Jan 2022, 14:28 PM
#4
avatar of DevM
Strategist Badge

Posts: 409 | Subs: 17

jump backJump back to quoted post17 Jan 2022, 10:49 AMEsxile
In tournanment we always see the same match up, Ostheer vs Soviet and this meta goes around since quite some time when Ostheer was still top pick with OPstruppen vs USF OPijeep and at that time it was clearly obvious why anyone would pick them.

From Those TOP tournament players perspective, what's the reason of the current sitation or more specifically:

Excluding the usual answer, Soviet is better/Ostheer is better... Today,

How and why do you think Ostheer is superior to USF so you rather avoid picking the later in tournament.
How and why do you think Ostheer is superior to UKF so you rather avoid picking the later in tournament.
How and why do you think Soviet is superior to OKW so you rather avoid picking the later in tournament.


In the past even if Soviet could be better than USF or UKF, that didn't stopped top players to play with different factions even if their favorite was slighly less capable than another. Today Tournament organizers have to impose rotations so we get to see more variety.

Another point that make me think about it is the variety of commanders pick. We're not facing the same scenario OPstruppen vs OPijeep anymore, Top players are using a rather large variety of commanders so is it possible that even with a similar variety of commanders others factions can't cope with Ostheer and Soviet? There isn't a single commander in USF/UKF/OKW that make it for competing at high level with their counterparts?


How and why do you think Ostheer is superior to USF so you rather avoid picking the later in tournament.

It's not that USF is unplayable in tournaments but its more risky, USF NEEDS to either snowball the game or get a good enough advantage so that when they enter the mid to late game stage they can close out the game efficiently thus avoiding having to break the tough OH meta of double MG/Double Pak/Double P4/Vetted LMG grens, which without good indirect fire and with riflemen progressively fairing worse is very hard to beat. Then you compare this to the soviets that can have almost equally impressive early games, a stable mid-game and a late game that equals the OH one and you have got your answer on why players fallback into this pick. On top of all this USF also struggles versus OKW even more, meaning that if you pick USF first its not even garanteed you will get OH on the other side and just to add more fuel to the fire soviets absolutely destroy OKW.

How and why do you think Ostheer is superior to UKF so you rather avoid picking the later in tournament.

UKF has this big problem dealing with the OH sniper and at a top level almost everyone can use the sniper to a good level of proficiency, adding on top of this even if you aren't a sniper player the UKF mid-game still suffers against the current OH meta of double P4 with double Pak just because the P4 is in many situations better than the cromwell especially as they vet up, so not only do you risk straight up losing the game as early as the OH sniper gets out but you also don't have any clear point in which you are better than the OH (assuming he doesn't screw up)

How and why do you think Soviet is superior to OKW so you rather avoid picking the later in tournament.

They can actually sustain the early aggression of OKW and in many cases even win the early game because the sturmpio at a high level and in most maps can get singled out (not doing anything because its a close range unit and the soviet player not letting it get to his most effective range). Not only that but the soviet mid game versus OKW is also very solid with zis-guns/T70/dhsk or maxim which makes it impossible to close out a game efficiently and finally the cherry on top is that soviets absolutely destroy OKW late game, they have answers for everything. Rakketens? Katyusha, vet 5 volks? 7 man cons, MG? Zis-barrage or katyusha, P4 or Panther? double zis-gun and/or SU-85 and/or t34 Ram ability and/or 34-85s which pair up nicely against them. You get the point
17 Jan 2022, 15:37 PM
#5
avatar of Esxile

Posts: 3424 | Subs: 1

@Devm Thanks for your input

jump backJump back to quoted post17 Jan 2022, 14:28 PMDevM

USF also struggles versus OKW even more


Can you elaborate a bit more?



17 Jan 2022, 15:54 PM
#6
avatar of rumartinez89

Posts: 374

DevM, thanks for the well thought out reply. It does get kind of old watching the same thing over and over in. Any small changes that you think could help even things out?
17 Jan 2022, 16:20 PM
#7
avatar of DevM
Strategist Badge

Posts: 409 | Subs: 17

jump backJump back to quoted post17 Jan 2022, 15:37 PMEsxile
@Devm Thanks for your input



Can you elaborate a bit more?





The reason the OKW match up can be harder than the OH one is because OKW can pair up against USF quite well in the early game, I would even give the edge to OKW.

Volks are cheaper and trade well with riflemen except at close range but many times that close range doesn't matter as much if you have an extra volk squad, adding on that the sturmpio is present which can help scare away riflemen squads from closing in the distance on the volks which keeps volks at their optimal range in the match up.

Then there's the fact that OKW also doesn't really struggle mid game versus USF, if you go mechanized you shut down any LV play from USF pretty well, if you go battlegroup the only way the USF player has to kill your flak HT is to dive in with the stuart which is dodgy at best and at the same time because the fuel costs for the flak HT are pretty cheap meaning that the OKW P4 will often match the USF sherman timing (and we know which one wins the match up), then there's tiny details like USF needing to backtech to get AT guns which means minutes in the field of having a sherman vs P4 match up and the AT guns themselves being munitions reliant to pen the OKW P4 more often than not, then again the same problem of dealing with the rakketens because of the lack of an artillery.

DevM, thanks for the well thought out reply. It does get kind of old watching the same thing over and over in. Any small changes that you think could help even things out?


It's hard to say, I think in order to fix it you would need to change a lot because when you change something you need to consider all the match ups, as an example I believe USF's problem is riflemen weighting down the faction late game, I would probably change the curve to be a bit weaker early game but scale better as the game proceeds, this would help versus the OH match up.

This in turn would make USF completely die to OKW since they ALREADY have an early edge versus USF, so then you would have to change volks, I would probably make them more costly to build. But then you would need to adjust the OKW vs UKF match up which OKW historically already struggles etc etc. It wouldn't be an easy fix but it could be fixable. It would just needed to be adjusted step by step which considering how late we are in the game lifecycle it's just not doable.
17 Jan 2022, 16:30 PM
#8
avatar of Protos Angelus

Posts: 1352

jump backJump back to quoted post17 Jan 2022, 15:37 PMEsxile
@Devm Thanks for your input



Can you elaborate a bit more?






Well, I won't speak for 1v1 as I don't play it, but Rifles are high maintenance close range units. First OKW unit is the sturmpio which, if it gets a good angle/ambush, can wreck both echelon and rifles 2v1. You know that USF will go for 3x rifles into officer (I go for ambo in teamgames), which leads to known engagements. If they go for paths spam, OKW can easily go for either double ISG or flak/luchs and close out the game due to lack of snares.

You know that Volks win vs Rifles long range and lose short and you know that Spios win vs everything early on. It's not hard to control 2/3 of a map with the sturmpio doing the Lord's work of giving you the edge in engagements in those two thirds.. Not only that, but USF has no mines or sandbags. Echelons can construct green cover but which is extremely unreliable. Even in a wall of 5 tank traps, the enemy MG can suppress like if there were no cover (one model will always be "outside" or in a bad angle due to the shape of the traps). USF also has to tech for weapon upgrades and retreat to pick them up. Nades are also separate tech.

Then you get to mid game. Either lieutenant for MG or captain for AT gun. Most 1v1s are lieutenant for the LV rush. You really want to snowball early as USF with the light vehicles. Stuart can take care of luchs/flak and can stand up to a Puma, but with raketen being able to retreat, and the small size of the 1v1 maps (retreat path is short), raketen can be played extremely aggressively. Captain does have the AAHT which objectively gives you the most firepower, but at the cost of extreme unreliability (driving with "U", and the rotating loop if you "Attack" something) and being 2 shot to kill.

In the end, there are two scenarios with USF: You either snowball hard and close out the game early or you lose.
Of course, you could be losing hard and the enemy makes a couple of costy mistakes and that turns the tide, but let's assume that the enemy is methodical.

If you don't win with USF early, you're done for. The game shifts away from close range engagements to long range where Axis units are generally much stronger. Only long range unit for USF is the doctrinal paratrooper with the LMG upgrade.

You can see it in lots of high ranking games. USF either dominates early and wins fast or they get bled to death as the game progresses.

Basically

Sherman loses to both P4s, ATG is unreliable and a munition sink (especially since later on, USF really needs those nades, smoke and explosive). Jackson is paper thin, and with no mines, vulnerable to Panther dives. Rifles fall off hard as the game progresses and get dominated by vet3 grens/obers/pgrens
Pak howitzers are far too slow and have a narrow arc of fire to be effective. After the AOE nerf, they also don't pak a punch, which means that they need to be built in pairs, which is another problem. They have 1.25 RA so even a vet0 unit can easily decrew them, and they are expensive to reinforce and move extremely slowly (to get to base or ambo).
Stuart falls off. The saving grace is the vet3 sight bonus but you need to get it to vet3.
M20 is used for scouting purposes and mines, so there is that, but ONLY IF you teched lieutenant.

AAHT, as brilliant as it is, needs a lot of micro and is a 2 shot so ... gl
Pak howi, nerfed to the ground
ATG, unreliable vs mediums without munitions
That's if you tech Captain.

Sherman loses to P4, effectively only used as a pot shot HE vs infantry
Jackson is great, vulnerable only to dives
Scott, also great in 1v1 but overlaps with the pak howi.

So while USF as a faction is fun to play, and is indeed strong, it's got glaring weaknesses that people who know how to play COH2, can easily take advantage of. Hence, USF tries to close out the game with LVs and win.

Soviets have everything and have an answer to everything and have no glaring weaknesses/holes in the roster. T34 is cheap and has great AI in the MGs and if it's going down, it can go down with a bang. SU85 is reliable and can survive dives due to the smaller form factor.
Katyusha is your bread and butter vs team weapons.
Where Scott can bleed one or two models, the crews can easily reposition and stay in the field, but once the rockets start raining down, it's retreat or goodbye. Of course, scott can fire all the time, while katyusha has a cooldown... but that's why it forces a retreat, by the time the weapon teams are back, you'll have another salvo ready.
Quad halftrack is easy to use and position, less firepower than AAHT, but much easier to handle and focus specific squads without if rotating constantly.
T70 is your bread and butter mid game with great recon late.
Cons are great, engies lay great mines...

UKF is a shittier faction which I won't even comment on.
17 Jan 2022, 16:36 PM
#9
avatar of Protos Angelus

Posts: 1352

jump backJump back to quoted post17 Jan 2022, 16:20 PMDevM


It's hard to say, I think in order to fix it you would need to change a lot because when you change something you need to consider all the match ups, as an example I believe USF's problem is riflemen weighting down the faction late game, I would probably change the curve to be a bit weaker early game but scale better as the game proceeds, this would help versus the OH match up.




I think that giving rifles the ability to pick up one LMGs once the major/racks are researched would help, but then commanders would need changes. You could also add some utility to rangers to justify their 350/10 price, maybe something that would synergize with rifles close range design (smoke or captain "On Me" similarity).
Giving a bigger bonus at vet3 could also possibly work.

But yes, agreed with all you've said. Well written.
17 Jan 2022, 16:44 PM
#10
avatar of Esxile

Posts: 3424 | Subs: 1

jump backJump back to quoted post17 Jan 2022, 16:20 PMDevM


It's hard to say, I think in order to fix it you would need to change a lot because when you change something you need to consider all the match ups


Wouldn't it better to just change Ostheer and Soviet since they're matching and already on top of the others? Applying small nerfs to specific abilities that could help others to reach their level.



17 Jan 2022, 17:59 PM
#11
avatar of MassaDerek

Posts: 136




UKF is a shittier faction which I won't even comment on.


LOL
18 Jan 2022, 02:42 AM
#12
avatar of didimegadudu

Posts: 63

ML this weekend was kinda boring. time to implement faction roulette + Commander Roulette for each player 5 minutes before actual match for ALL games. Tournament is suppose to be entertaining the audience. we are not entertained by the same faction all the time everytime. especially Sov and Wher
18 Jan 2022, 06:55 AM
#13
avatar of Grumpy

Posts: 1896

jump backJump back to quoted post17 Jan 2022, 16:20 PMDevM


.. then there's tiny details like USF needing to backtech to get AT guns which means minutes in the field of having a sherman vs P4 match up and the AT guns themselves being munitions reliant to pen the OKW P4 more often than not, ...


.. I believe USF's problem is riflemen weighting down the faction late game, I would probably change the curve to be a bit weaker early game but scale better as the game proceeds, this would help versus the OH match up.


... it's just not doable.



I realize that you were talking about 1v1's, but your comments are also true about 3v3 or 4v4. Rifles don't scale well enough into late game to make them worthwhile. They are too squishy, bleed too much, and don't do enough damage, whether it is with their rifles or the joke of a bazooka or grenade that they have. They need something like the Grenadier's damage reduction instead of RA or even better, a clone of mobilize reserves, with the 6th model costing one weapon slot.

Having to backtech for either the AT gun or a MG not only delays armor, it gives you an extra squad that you might not want. Also, the muni costs of the AT gun are too much. If you just have rifles to screen for the AT gun, a Brummbar can usually just drive up to it and decrew in two shots so it seems kind of pointless. It's better if you have Pathfinders screening for it, but still gets wiped easily by rocket arty.
18 Jan 2022, 08:17 AM
#14
avatar of Vipper

Posts: 12979 | Subs: 1

jump backJump back to quoted post17 Jan 2022, 16:20 PMDevM

...
It's hard to say, I think in order to fix it you would need to change a lot because when you change something you need to consider all the match ups, as an example I believe USF's problem is riflemen weighting down the faction late game, I would probably change the curve to be a bit weaker early game but scale better as the game proceeds, this would help versus the OH match up.

This in turn would make USF completely die to OKW since they ALREADY have an early edge versus USF, so then you would have to change volks, I would probably make them more costly to build. But then you would need to adjust the OKW vs UKF match up which OKW historically already struggles etc etc. It wouldn't be an easy fix but it could be fixable. It would just needed to be adjusted step by step which considering how late we are in the game lifecycle it's just not doable.

And that is one reason why one should use a "benchmark" faction where it remain relatively at the same power level and the other faction adjust accordingly.
18 Jan 2022, 12:22 PM
#15
avatar of DevM
Strategist Badge

Posts: 409 | Subs: 17

jump backJump back to quoted post18 Jan 2022, 08:17 AMVipper

And that is one reason why one should use a "benchmark" faction where it remain relatively at the same power level and the other faction adjust accordingly.


That is what OH would be in this scenario.
18 Jan 2022, 13:21 PM
#16
avatar of Vipper

Posts: 12979 | Subs: 1

jump backJump back to quoted post18 Jan 2022, 12:22 PMDevM


That is what OH would be in this scenario.

Glad that we agree.

In that case one would have to decide the power level of OH and then:
balance Soviet/USF/UKF vs OH
and then
balance OKW vs the rest
18 Jan 2022, 15:47 PM
#17
avatar of GachiGasm

Posts: 905 | Subs: 1

This is a big entering post for a question, which requres 1 sentence answer.

The reason why Sov\Ost are the mist picked - because they have proper tools roster. UKF\USF can be abused by Ostheer, because ostheer has more tools to begin with. OKW can be abused by Sov, because soviets have more tools.

Top players are all about either strategy\abuse\min-maxing. And gimmics which factions like UKF\USF\OKW are designed around usually just wont work in a top tournament play, because your apponent knows perfectly what your faction can do or cant, and it will be exploited.

By picking sov\ostheers you already min-maxing your chances of victory. UKF\USF\OKW on the other hand fully rely on you just being better then your opponent or out-playing him in order to win. And considering that usually in tournaments finals, players are marginally stronger\weaker then their opponents its just pointless to pick them.
18 Jan 2022, 17:48 PM
#18
avatar of Esxile

Posts: 3424 | Subs: 1


factions like UKF\USF\OKW are designed around usually just wont work in a top tournament play, because your apponent knows perfectly what your faction can do or cant, and it will be exploited.


That's not true. Some times ago Ostheer was weaker than OKW, OKW T2 was the get to go and OKW was at that time also better than Ostheer, Soviet had trouble dealing with them and people used to pick USF to counter them in tournament.
Ostheer has just been overboosted over the past few patches and only Soviet has been looked at balance wise vs them.

18 Jan 2022, 18:58 PM
#19
avatar of GachiGasm

Posts: 905 | Subs: 1

jump backJump back to quoted post18 Jan 2022, 17:48 PMEsxile

That's not true. Some times ago Ostheer was weaker than OKW, OKW T2 was the get to go and OKW was at that time also better than Ostheer, Soviet had trouble dealing with them and people used to pick USF to counter them in tournament.
Ostheer has just been overboosted over the past few patches and only Soviet has been looked at balance wise vs them.


Well honestly its completly irrelevant. Unless WFA factions were clrearly overpowered in one aspect or another (or EFA underpowered), they were never picked over EFA faction.

Also it sounds like you are just implying that the only reason why Ostheer is picked - because its OP. Everything what made Ostheer stupidly OP in 1v1 was nerfed. Osttropens were nerfed, VSL was nerfed, Ass grens nerfed, Sniper nerfed (for every one, but still), tech skipping capacity nerfed.

And as for the fact that they were overall buffed. Well thx to the fact that UKF\USF were much more stronger then the soviets (around whom ost was balanced) resulting in ost struggling. Then it was fixed, soviets become UP and they were brought up to matchs new Ostheer power-level. And suddenly when both Sov\Ost became closer to the power level of WFA, they become the best factions.

It doesnt contradicts with anything I've said. The sole reason why Sov\Ostheer are much stronger then other factions - because they have answer to pretty much anything, at any time. Both factions have access to all the nessesery tools, with commanders boosting your over-all army and not just being "access to the stock tools" and they not rely on gimmics like "well you dont have X, thats why you have Y".
18 Jan 2022, 19:09 PM
#20
avatar of Esxile

Posts: 3424 | Subs: 1



Well honestly its completly irrelevant. Unless WFA factions were clrearly overpowered in one aspect or another (or EFA underpowered), they were never picked over EFA faction.

Also it sounds like you are just implying that the only reason why Ostheer is picked - because its OP. Everything what made Ostheer stupidly OP in 1v1 was nerfed. Osttropens were nerfed, VSL was nerfed, Ass grens nerfed, Sniper nerfed (for every one, but still), tech skipping capacity nerfed.

And as for the fact that they were overall buffed. Well thx to the fact that UKF\USF were much more stronger then the soviets (around whom ost was balanced) resulting in ost struggling. Then it was fixed, soviets become UP and they were brought up to matchs new Ostheer power-level. And suddenly when both Sov\Ost became closer to the power level of WFA, they become the best factions.

It doesnt contradicts with anything I've said. The sole reason why Sov\Ostheer are much stronger then other factions - because they have answer to pretty much anything, at any time. Both factions have access to all the nessesery tools, with commanders boosting your over-all army and not just being "access to the stock tools" and they not rely on gimmics like "well you dont have X, thats why you have Y".


The state of the balance is what the balance team decides it is. No faction is stronger by default. If we went from the reverse situation then it means there is a point in-between where better balance lies.
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