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turbotortoise: Commrade_General

6 Aug 2015, 01:32 AM
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Posts: 1261 | Subs: 4

Ah, Major.

Good to see you've made it. We lost a good many souls back there. I hope you find your accommodations comfortable, and you've managed to get some rest, we'll need you at your best sooner rather than later, ready to lead our mounting counter-attack!

Welcome to our Summer Mentor Program. My name is Simon, I look forward to getting to meet you, and to our time together:

Be sure to add me on steam here, where we may get further acquainted and start the program.
Communication will be done strictly over Steam IM and a VOIP program called:

RaidCall please download, create a profile and join group: 777531, if you need any help with this, I may be contacted on steam.

Our program will consist of personalized reviews with feedback given throughout the week culminating with a one on one session for two hours at an agreed time on Saturday.

Feedback will resemble something like:

I'm sure your field record speaks for itself, but I would like to see you in action. Please post your most recent game, win or loss, to this thread to confirm your interest.

Please include:
-what game types and factions you primarily play. we will be focusing on those exclusively. bearing in mind I am most familiar with the WFA and duels.
-how you felt: comfortable? anxious? etc.
-a description of the situation/s/ where you made mistakes or weren't sure what to do.
-where you felt you needed to improve.

Something like:
This will be an intense program forcing you to read and write. I require as much insight from your perspective as possible to get an understanding for how you operate during the game, so please, the more you write the better.

I will be trying to encourage an inner look at your game, and hopefully construct a sense of self-awareness and improve your play whilst having some fun along the way.

Who wants to live forever? Let's dance like no one's watching.

-Simon "turbo"
14 Aug 2015, 02:46 AM
avatar of Commrade_General

Posts: 28

Hey Turbo,

Thanks for taking me under your wing!

I mostly play team games consisting of 2v2s and 4v4s. Almost everyday during lunch, I play with one of my coworkers in what is usually a 2v2 as Allies. I generally play as USF, however, after the most recent patch I have been playing as Soviets during those games. At home, which is when I play 4v4s with randoms, I almost exclusively play as OKW. I also occasionally play 2v2s as OKW.

In general, I would appreciate help with my macro in situations where I have field advantage. When I am losing, I generally get tunnel-visioned, but I am at least aware when I am doing something incorrect.But, there have been numerous games where I have taken map and VP control by mid-game, but I never capitalize on that correctly and end up losing the match.

Additionally, I could use help properly selecting a commander that counters enemy selections while also complementing my teammates' selection as I tend to hesitate on which commanders work best in specific situations.

Also, here is my most recent replay

Thanks! Hope to chat soon!
28 Aug 2015, 20:36 PM
avatar of turbotortoise

Posts: 1261 | Subs: 4

Alright! Let's get started. I have reviewed your initial replay, but be sure to get in touch on steam so that we may determine a schedule, program focus, and just work more closely.

You adapt a very intriguing, sort of... preemptive playstyle which demonstrates a lot of foresight and and an understanding of the game, but that may also leave you vulnerable. I think that is the main reason you find yourself unnerved or confused during the mid-game, simply because you are presented with so many options that it's easy to choose the "sub-optimal" one, such as your howitzers for instance. I'll explain more, later in the breakdown; I just want to address some of your tertiary concerns first about synergy and commander selection.

Your commander choice was fairly solid I would not worry about it too much, personally I think in a 2v2 with a USF player an IS2 a must, you'll need that sort of heavy armor on the field to complement their support weapons, or if you go terror, trying to break through with a flame tank may be a better investment, but otherwise your load out is more than competitive. So, personally I think... "synergy" is a bit of a misnomer, because for "true" unit and map synergy to appear, just for sake of example, like, your USF player taking a choke point, falling back and then you taking up the position with your T2 defensive units, such tactical execution requires an EXTREME degree of cohesion, and understanding both personally and of each other. Generally speaking in my experience, if you can do your part on your side of the map, or recognize when either of you are getting double teamed and shift to adjust, employing a "standard" or core build and going from there will be more than enough to contribute to the "team" aspect, so I wouldn't really worry about it too much, but if you do want to improve in that aspect, it won't be done in game. It will occur outside game, having talks and building that understanding and communication about what you want to do.

So, going into more depth regarding your personal play, I'll say first that this was a very interesting game to review, since you had a different mindset going into it then I usually see. The defensive, creeping style you employed can work wonders against an entrenched opponent, or one that is too antsy to advance. This of course sets you up to choose when you want to assault and take the game by the scruff of the neck IF… you have the units to do so, which I’m afraid at no point in the game you really had. It began, and was sort of exacerbated by the early cache which is generally speaking, always a mistake, because you won’t have the map presence to defend it, and it is costing you precious manpower you will need for units. It was only active for around three minutes, and at +6 income, did not really gain you any resource equity and again prevented you from having another squad on the field.

Personally, I think you adapted too early leaving you with a strange set of units, and that’s why you were stuck trading mortar rounds blow-by-blow which in my opinion is a very "ughhh" sort of situation to be in. It is also why you were left wondering what to do in transition. I prefer to dictate the tempo of the battle, and more importantly where you fight. It’s easier having that sort of control, instead of reacting, but again it requires a core set of units. Perhaps two weapons teams, three conscripts and an elite infantry squad will suffice, you had most of that, so infantry wasn't really the issue, after all, you managed to hold your line for twenty minutes. The key that was missing I think was your light vehicles. I’m not sure if you requisitioned anything out of T3 which is very wasteful. Call it hindsight or perhaps wishful thinking, but I suspect you could have routed them from the center with either a T70 or perhaps SU76’s with their barrage, which would have also deterred those pesky panzers.

You did well however recognizing the holes in the line and realizing you had to make some sort of play (indicating so, and just general tactical decisions to your teammate could be an area in which to improve synergy) taking the other option which was swinging out along the flank and stretching the line with your shock troops, which was a great play and gave you not only the width, gave you room to breathe from the constant barraging but it also cut off their resources, and by mining the approach as you fell back, not only defended your flank, but also bought you time whilst chipping away at their infantry. After all, stormtroopers are really expensive and you really bled your opponent, which was really brilliant.

From what I’ve seen so far you execute well and have a fairly solid grasp on the early game, but having a concrete plan for what you wish to do in transition, be it, IS2’s or what have you will help, but it will first require getting more familiar with the game clock and map control to build a better feeling for timings which will be beneficial to your play, but we can work on that in our one-on-one sessions. Again be sure to get in touch over steam so we may setup a more concrete understanding and debrief in real-time.
9 Sep 2015, 20:17 PM
10 Sep 2015, 00:29 AM
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Posts: 1261 | Subs: 4

Hey Turbo,

Here's my latest replay:


Excellent, I will get on it tonight.
10 Sep 2015, 20:53 PM
avatar of Commrade_General

Posts: 28

Hey Turbo,

Here's another one I played this afternoon as OKW that shows similar weaknesses from the previous replay as well as some more focused concerns I have.


Thanks again!
11 Sep 2015, 04:58 AM
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Hey mate, thanks for sharing. Normally I would review both these replays independently, but from what I have seen they both demonstrate the same deficiency holding you back, something that was also evident in the first replay you posted to begin the mentoring program. It is something that I think you have already identified it in your introspection, and that’s unit composition. This in turn leads to economic foundation. If you don’t have units, you won’t have resources simply because you will be out capped, and also potentially out flanked. Which also contributes to map awareness. When you only have a handful of units, it can get very scary as you get compact and your enemy starts to run roughshod around the map.

You play very well tactically, the nades and engagements in both games, particularly at the 7th minute during the game on Düsseldorf illustrate some really brilliant execution, but I’m afraid you just do not have the units to accomplish what you want to strategically.
Think about this for a moment-- in the same game during the 12th minute, you did well to fend off a counter attack, forcing a rout, but what can you do afterwards? You simply did not have the units to either: spread the line as you did in your first replay, or to counter attack-- punching through, or envelope and contain the OKW base as you wanted to.

If you examine the aftermath in detail, even after wiping a squad you had effectively two combat squads, and one of them was tied up trying to harass a VP, only to get pinned down by an MG. In neither replay did you have the army, the tools, to achieve what you wanted to do.

For instance in the second game, the two ISGs although successful in both doing damage and uprooting entrenched troops, are naturally not units that can hold a line. That is what your infantry is for. So, I will stop here, I think I’ve illustrated the point. I suggest that we examine build orders and teching timing as something that we can work on, which also I suspect may address your specific concerns, which again, I think are all sort of intertwined.

Efficiently using resources, and when to buy the correct units will really fall into place once you have a core front line fighting force. It will be really easy afterwards to understand what you need to compliment that core and implement combined arms which will be your best counter when a shock unit does hit the field, (crocodile aside, that thing is a little contentious and tricky at the moment). Maintaining that core will also help you recover from early setbacks, so long as you preserve your units. You can easily retreat, gather yourself, grab a specialist, or your own shock unit, reform and counter attack.

I would recommend re-watching these two replays from your opponent’s perspective and really observe their army composition. Particularly at the 7th and 10th minutes, which are usually fulcrum points during a match. You’ll notice that at any one time in the early to mid-game your opponents will field in or around four squads of core, front line infantry. As well, just taking a cursory look in the replay section -- this replay http://www.coh2.org/replay/39951/britsop-2 from the British Forces perspective may be good to examine, although it does feature some rather unorthodox play, it does illustrate what having a strong core force can achieve.

So I’ll end this analysis with a short discussion with positioning on new maps. Start by consolidating your natural resources, the closest fuel and munitions points. Once you have secured those, try and imagine a front line forming, ask if your enemy wanted to take these, where would they come from? From there, you will start to imagine where the choke points are, and it is simply a matter of reversing the thought process when you are on offense. Start small, and slow, there is nothing saying that you cannot reposition if you are too deep. I like to think of the game like a puzzle game, every street corner, every block, is a new challenge with a couple of solutions, the trick is to poke and prod trying to find the most optimal route, but I think you are a sound tactician, it is simply a matter of making sure you have the correct tools at your disposal.
13 Sep 2015, 22:07 PM
avatar of Commrade_General

Posts: 28

Hey Turbo,

Here's the replay from Thursday I was talking about:


Gonna hop in-game soon and get a few more games in!

As always, thanks very much!
13 Sep 2015, 23:38 PM
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Posts: 28

14 Sep 2015, 00:29 AM
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Posts: 1261 | Subs: 4

I'll have these finished before our mentor session for you to digest.
16 Sep 2015, 22:56 PM
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Posts: 1261 | Subs: 4

Hello Comrade. I wanted to get these reviewed yesterday, but I’m afraid it’s been a rather depressing set of days here with a HDD failure capping off this sequence. I hope this feedback is in time to benefit our makeup session, but I’m happy with our progress and glad previous feedback is helping you improve early in the program.

Beginning with your OKW game I think you played very soundly. It was very well executed on your part. When you mentioned your build, it is different with OKW than say Ostheer when you decide to choose a tier. I am concerned you tried to directly counter the scout cars and were not necessarily thinking ahead as to what you may face later on. It is important to think that one step ahead, and remember you will be dealing with snipers and flamers. Besides the puma, MechReg is not really giving you any other equity. I think Panzer Fusiliers, and RegimentalHQ may have been a better decision, if you wanted more infantry staying power, but either way it did work out, so my point being just be sure your examining what the game may look like eight minutes down the road.

I also think along the line of PzF’s you could have utilized your commander a bit more. Your build order was not the most efficient, and had a lot of overlap. Perhaps getting both HQ’s before your Schewerer and getting the CPV to cover late game, or at the very least considering you did get the Schewerer, choosing SpecOps before your Ober’s to get StG44’s would have provided you a lot of utility. As well, the two PzV’s gave you a bit of a top heavy build, excuse the presumption but probably because you were very concerned about trying to get a breakthrough.

I’m going to use this to jump ahead to a concern you bring up in your Brit replay which is pertinent here, if my line of reasoning is correct, that being: width, aggression and flanking. It may have actually been to your detriment to concern yourself too much with, sort of, fancy maneuvers like that. There were times when your team mate was down to little more than a PaK gun, StuG and a pio squad, and it may not have seemed like it, but at times, you were the only thing holding a reasonable front line. I think with the dynamic and the flow, or lack thereof in this game, you made a sound strategic decision to slug it out. It can be really tempting to flank or try to end the game in one fell swoop of tactical brilliance, but those sorts of situations can also just as easily fall on their face, as you know.

So, I would try and just… sort of calm down a little bit, hahah. I’m worried you might be trying to do too much. When you do, it is really easy to become stretched. So long as you do your bit, and support your team mate when you can, you’ll be in fine shape.

You also did really well to stave off the late game exhaustion, your attrition rate was superb, very good job keeping your units alive. I will also add though that it will often pay dividends,especially if the game went longer and became a VP thief race, to replace your infantry first. You lost a few squads at the end there and they are overall, going to provide you more utility then say your Stuka did.

Moving forward, your Brit game was pretty straight forward and fairly well executed too, I think you hit on your main stumbling blocks, and how it forced you to “go the long way” as you excellently put it haha. All I would say is, commit to it! At the fifth minute, you had a chance to break through, but only pushed one squad. I would have preferred to see a full out assault here, after all, don’t worry it is early, you can still counter attack, it might even be easier to form a rout after a failed assault‘cos your opponent might make a mistake in positioning. Same with the Sexton, commit to it! Get it early. Between the PaK’s and weapons teams, effectively half of your opponent’s army was entrenched. The Sexton, or even another mortar pit would have been brilliant to deal, again, not just the unit, and the moment itself, but also for the way he is playing. Thinking ahead, and getting in tune with their strategy and how their unit composition is being used to execute it, THAT, is what “metagaming” actually means, and I think you are improving at feeling that out and not just countering units and scenarios but really shutting down the way your opponent’s want to play.

Just to illustrate I will digress back a little bit to the MG situation. When I say approach tactical scenarios like a puzzle game, it may also pay off to approach the strategic portion in the same way. For instance, the mortars, they are obviously a problem, now, strategically perhaps an AEC could at least push them away and force them to deploy further back, but I think they could have been dealt with tactically, without a change in tech. What is our core army composition to deal with them? Infantry, ok great! Perhaps a flanking maneuver would be useful; however, you nailed it, the MG in the church is stopping the utilization of our army. So, in actuality the MG in the church is the fulcrum point of his army and must be dealt with, the mortars aren’t really much more than an annoyance in this scenario. Try for your next game to really break down, what is stopping you from doing what you want with your army, not necessarily what is doing damage, or causing you the most headache, but rather, what decisions are your opponents making that are stopping you from achieving your goals.
17 Sep 2015, 00:56 AM
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Posts: 28


Amazingly boss analysis!!

Also, bummer about your HDD :/ That's never fun to deal with.

But in regards to planning ahead, I think that is a super huge problem of mine. I am such a reactive player, I never feel like I know what I actually want my army to do. I enter a game just waiting for the moment where I fall behind and need to figure out how to react. Rarely, do I feel like I know what I'm doing when I'm not purely on the defensive. So I think that's something I really need to focus on as I continue to improve: what is my ideal army comp and stance (in terms of aggressiveness, as I tend to be a naturally turtle/defensive-type player).

17 Sep 2015, 05:17 AM
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Posts: 28

Hey Turbo,

Thanks again for the matches! So some things I took away from today's games:

*Understanding army composition, specifically in regards to build order. I should know based on timing, team size, and map how many of each unit I should have.

*One-Third Rule: especially in 1v1s, making sure I have 1/3 of the map locked down in order to maintain steady supply of resources. Additionally, this should help my focus in regards to defending and capturing other parts of the map.

*Maintaining Logistical Focus: although this is part of the 1/3 rule, I truly feel I need to emphasize this more as I get carried away with trying to cap points all over the map. Besides having the overall objective within the 1/3 rule, I need to make sure I always have a plan of action that im working towards and that my units should always be doing something useful.

*Get More General Gameplay Knowledge: play more 1v1s; know the feel and understand the layout of more maps; pay attention to the clock to capitalize on transitional moments. These are all areas where I think I can learn a lot more from to help me be a better player.

Thanks again for all the help!
20 Sep 2015, 18:37 PM
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Posts: 28

25 Sep 2015, 15:34 PM
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Posts: 28

Turbo! Hey Man. So I've only played a few matches since Sunday; none of them have been too interesting. I've been playing 3's with two of my coworkers, and we've just been stomping as allies...i think the longest match we've had so far has been 18 minutes. All that being said, I haven't really found a replay worth posting, so I apologize about that.

But further, I ended up making last minute plans this weekend and I will be out of town until Sunday evening :/ My bad, man. But, let me know if you'd wanna play Sunday night!
25 Sep 2015, 19:47 PM
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Posts: 1261 | Subs: 4

Yeah, that would work fine. Thanks for letting me know. In case you don't receive my steam message, RaidCall got an update which broke the program. Stick to the old client if possible.

Also, in lieu of our replay situation, I'm going to see if I can put together a bit of a film to illustrate the points we worked on last session.
25 Sep 2015, 20:59 PM
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Posts: 28

That would be awesome! Thanks man!

And also, an OKW guide of any sort would be dope, if one of the other strategists on here has put one together recently.
26 Sep 2015, 01:22 AM
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Posts: 1261 | Subs: 4

I'm in the process of reaching out to those more knowledgeable than I ;)

In the interim, give this a perusal, regarding HQ placement. I think you understand most of the precepts, but it's still a good refresher and provides some tips about shot blockers and retreat patterns which I think could help. Do; however, take the context of the spacing tips into account: the Air Supremacy and Flame Building Support abilities didn't exist at time of publishing and I would allow a larger degree of spacing between my HQ's.

27 Sep 2015, 23:31 PM
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Posts: 28

Hey Turbo, thanks for the article on HQ placement! That is some solid advice, especially in regards to shot blockers.

I'm flying stand by, so I just finalized my flight schedule. I should get home at 845 PM PST. I tried to get home earlier, but the flights are all busy. Let me know if you would be down to play around 930 PM PST
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