I thought it would be interesting to reminisce a bit about the different battle tactics and their use in the game. Or maybe "battle tricks" would be a better wording.
Below are the few that I can think of, but I'm very new to the game, so there are probably some I overlooked (since I haven't been fighting much).
Return attack [Less viable due to anti-timing - read comments in thread]: When someone attacks you, you will know exactly how long it takes to get from their city to yours if you have the same ship speed (meaning you are similar in terms of Lighthouse and Cartography). Thus, you will also know how long it takes for them to get back. The game will show you exactly when the attack arrives (in 2.0, that is, in 1.26 worlds you can use my incoming attack tool to aid your calculations), so all you have to do is to add the time it takes to travel between you city and the attacker's. For ease of calculation, you can use my incoming attack tool (which was made for another game, but works just as well. Once you have the specific time, you can launch an attack from another city to hit just a few seconds after the attacker's fleet gets back (once again, you can use the incoming attack tool to more easily calculate exactly when you should launch your attack to arrive at the right time). You can send the attack from your defending city as well, this just requires you to time the return of your offensive units to your city just after the attack arrives so that you can send them right away to catch the attacker.
Catching light ships in defense is some of the easier and cheapest battle points you will earn in this game since there are hardly any modifiers to help the light ships defend properly. Catching offensive land units can be really good as well, if they are not behind a big city wall and supported by a big defense.
Timing snipe: Not really much of a trick about this. You make sure to time the return of your defensive units to snipe the conquering attack containing the colony ship (you can send out your units and calculate at what time to withdraw using my recall tool), avoid all the others. If you spot it in time, it should be easy to recognize which one is the attack with the colony ship as it will be five times slower than a normal attack with fast transport ships coming from that location (2,5 times slower than normal transports, if the attacker normally uses those).
Offensive snipe [Conquest only]: If you are outgunned and have to use your offensive units to break a conquest attempt, you leave your defensive units to defend while you send your offensive units out. You make sure to time the return of your offensive units to arrive back at your city before any support of the attacker gets there. So, if the support for the conquest arrives five seconds after the attack, you should time the return to around three seconds after the attack (accounting for possible server lag).
Colonize defend [Morale only]: Whenever you notice that a player is attacking a much smaller inactive player regularly, you can make use of this to gain some cheap battle points by colonizing that city, supporting it, and then breaking the siege (since you don't want the city). The colony ship gives you vision of incoming attacks besieging the city allows you to gain defensive battle points.
If it's a juicy inactive farm, the player might be sending 250 horsemen every time he attacks. Meanwhile, he might be attacking at 40% morale. So, if you send 600 hoplites to defend, you can kill 250 horsemen (180.000 resources) for the cost of 267 hoplites (60.075). If you send 200 chariots, it's even cheaper, only losing you 59 chariots (56.640 resources). You can minimize risk of bad composition by sending a mixed group of defenders (or Athena's Wisdom, if you prefer), depending on your experiences with the player. It's a great way to set up a rival.
Spell protection: I might be mistaken about this one (maybe I misread in-game message), but from what I have noticed only one divine power can be enacted on any moving troop. So, if you are sending an attack and fear that the defender might cast Sea Storm og Zeus' Rage on it, make sure to cast a spell on it right away, before the defender has a chance. This also makes sure that the defender cannot cast Wisdom on your attack and see what you're attacking with, allowing you to make diversion attacks (where you attack several targets with a minimum of units) before attacking a big target.
Last edited by Asjo; 19.07.11 at 11:13.
your return attack idea won't work due to the fact that the antitiming would be in effect on both attacks, yours when it left and theirs when it started to return. much better to send it a few minutes before it hits and then you know you will dodge it.
Originally Posted by Pythagorus
Ah, I see. Something new I hadn't encountered as of yet. So, with every attack sent a certain amount of seconds (or is it percentage? I read up to 30 seconds) will be randomly added or subtracted from the attack time.
I had no idea. That sure ruins the only element of "skill" available in this game (good timing sense/quick fingers). Even if you resend a few time to get lucky and get a better time, you will have no idea when the attacker gets back. That's sad
My personal battle tactic; kill.
I think you understate the luck element. Anything more than a five second windows for someone to dodge your attack will likely mean you have failed (ie. your opponent will react in time and send his ships away). And we are operating with a discrepancy of 0-120 seconds (accounting for addition and subtraction for both attacks), meaning that there is only 4,1% chance a return attack will succeed. Quite disheartening, and would make it much less likely that people will try it since there are also other risk elements to consider (spells getting cast at you, losing too many ships that you need for later, provoking hostilities). So, while you are saying that it simply introduces the luck element it very much limits the "skill" element.
Originally Posted by berserxes
Last edited by Asjo; 18.07.11 at 22:30.
Or wait a minute ... have we overlooked something here? Just because an attack has been affected by the anti-timer doesn't mean that this affects the time it takes to return to the city, does it? I mean, it affects the time it takes to get there, but isn't the return speed the same?
So, if someone attacks, the process should still be the following:
1. Take screenshot that has both server time and time for incoming attack. Input this data into the Ninjatool incoming attack timer. Now you have the time where the attack arrives. If you play in 2.0, you already have the specific arrival time.
2. Using the arrival time, calculate the return time using the Ninjatool incoming attack timer, plot in the arrival as "current time" and the time it takes to return as the "time until fleet arrives". This should calculate the time when the attacking fleet returns to its city.
3. Using the time for the return of the attacking fleet, now time your own attack. Say that you have calculated that the attacking fleet will return at 13:45:22 (1:45:22 PM), you send an attack a few seconds before you would hit this timing. If it is delayed by anything between 3-8 seconds, you are in the clear and the attack is good. If it's not, you withdraw instantly and try to hit the timing again, keeping in mind that you should now mentally subtract a few seconds to the desired time of your attack to still hit the same timing. This is still quite random, but should give you 4-5 decent attempts where you can get lucky. You know the exact time where your opponent gets back, but you just have to get lucky and hit that time (with 4-5 attempts the luck factor at least becomes diminished a bit.
Last edited by Asjo; 18.07.11 at 22:32.
the return time is affected by the antitimer as well.
Originally Posted by Pythagorus
the return journey is counted as a new trip and will thus get an anti-timing adjustment of its own. the only return journeys that get no anti-timing are cancelled attacks/support since those do not count as a new trip.