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WildEyes' Leaving Guide-to-Everything

Simcountry: Simcountry Bulletin Board  WildEyes' Leaving Guide-to-Everything

WildEyes

Monday, July 13, 2009 - 11:45 pm Click here to edit this post
Note: If anyone knows how I can make those annoying black diamonds go away please let me know.

Economy:

I've always been a self-run gal myself, so I like to keep those nasty CEOs out of my country, unless it's MY CEOs. However, here are three strats for building yourself a decent, good, & great economy.

DECENT ECONOMY:
Buy lots of pop, low taxes, and let the CEOs come on in. This is what most players do, and I'll not deny it works OK. A strong CEO base also helps if you run a split state/private economy.

You might try being selective over what corps you let CEOs put in. You might try building your own, keeping their value low, and letting the CEOs buy them.

GOOD ECONOMY:
Build your own state economy, get the corps fully upgraded, and then IPO them over to your CEO. You can run your country's corps entirely from your CEO.

IPO your country's shares during the SECOND half of the month, after the hour has rolled around, and you ought to not have any problems from inv. funds.

IPO 15% (from country) and BUY 30% (with CEO)
Then repeat until 100% of the shares are transferred. It goes like this (SELL/BUY)
15%/30%
15%
15%/30%
15%
15%/15%
25%/25%
That's the quickest way to do it.

There are two main advantages to doing this as opposed to just letting any old CEO come in and build. FIRST, you can control what KIND of corps you get. All corps are not created equal, and certainly all CEO corps are not.

You first want to line up a list of the most profitable per-worker corps. Get your 200/200 upgraded corps, find the (net) profit numbers and divide by the number of workers. AF and Gasoline outstrip most of the others, but their volatility has always been an issue (they go deep green and can lose a lot). I prefer oil and electric which have strong red cycles. FMUs are also good corps, despite their high worker requirements. They are still very competitive per-worker and their fully upgraded workforce will pay the highest taxes of any corporation also (but the corp's profit starts to suffer after 600, definitely after 800).

It's important to make sure you pick corps with strong market cycles, ESPECIALLY if you are privatizing your country with your CEO - the profit payment (40% of production) is not *just* the production value, it's the production value at market price: which means, yes you still get profit even when the market is green (unlike a lot of state corps) but you get MORE when the market is red (ino, makes sense, right?).

So, privatizing, you can pick strong corps, but you can ALSO control the salary levels. This is good for obvious reasons such as more income tax... but don't forget CEO corps pay profit out of their production, so the higher you crank the production (via salaries) you get proportionally more than if it were a state corp.

Also, you can keep salaries at levels to establish a ratio with gov salaries to maximize Profit:Cost, or to keep military spending manageable (a good "trick" is to run one state corp at 30 salaries to tank your country's avg and let you run cheaper gov salaries).

EDIT: Something I remembered that goes along with this, for those who are striving to reach #1 FI... or just save some money in general...

You do not have to have gov salaries match corp salaries. W3C has always told me your gov salaries need to be at least 50% of corporate, but I seem to always run into problems after a while of doing that. However, even in war slaves, I have never had problems running gov at 75% of the corporate, as long as there are more than enough workers.


GREAT ECONOMY (V.1 - NOT run in war slaves at own risk):

It may be surprising that I say a state economy is the best you can run... but it is, because state economies can take the full advantage of contracting.

The old contracting system was great, but killed thanks to Fradmark. However, what the misguided fool did not realize was he opened an even GREATER possibility for contracting supplies manually.

Here is how you contract:

FIRST: Understand how the ASQ is reached (ASQ=Average Supply Quality). ASQ is the average quality of the supplies your corp uses... many people put in a flat number like 100, 160, 190... whatever, as the quality to buy; however, this is just the average your auto-buying will aim for. All supplies will be bought at as close to 190 as possible.

This is not needed. The average can be reached by mixing high quality and low quality goods. The theory is simple and remains unchanged from the old system: buy your cheapest goods at the highest quality and your most expensive goods at the lowest quality. The spread will most often be in your favor.

(PROTIP: You can always cut out FMU costs this way. FMU costs are almost always one of the top expenses in corps, and for state corps there is a "hidden" modifier of between 2.5x-3.5x
attached to FMU costs. It comes in the form of your "Fixed Property Cost." Monitor it in relation to your FMU costs in a state corp and a private corp and you'll begin to see the relation. It is a part of the imposed system which attempts to favor private corps.)

Now, ASQ is reached by the following formula:
[x(PQ_of_x) + y(PQ_of_y) + z(PQ_of_z)]/(x+y+z) = ASQ

x,y,z each represent a different supply product, and you put in the amount used monthly. PQ_of_x,y,z is the quality. Multiply the amount of each supply used by its quality, add them all together, and then divide by the total amount of supplies used equals the ASQ.

This is because the ASQ is weighted by amount used.

tommi> if you use 5 of one product of quality 150 and 10 of anonther, of quality 200 then the average is:
[5:45:11 PM] * petraarkanian entwines her fingers and prays for a copy-pasted formula
[5:46:16 PM] is it, err, 183.3333?
[5:46:26 PM] (5 150 + 10 200 )/15 = (750 + 2000 )/15 = 2750/15 = 183
so the quality of thge input is 183.
[5:48:03 PM] the quality of the output depends on the input quality, in this case 183, plus the
[5:48:24 PM] quality of the corporation


From the horse's mouth, as it were.

(PROTIP: Final quality is (ASQ2)*CQ*1.02. CQ + Corp Quality. HOWEVER ASQ2 is 1+[0.01(ASQ-100)/2]... or an easier way to explain it is, if ASQ is 190, change it to 1.90 and divide right of the decimal by 2, so it is 1.45...

so 190 ASQ with a 200 qual. corp gives 1.45*200*1.02 = 295.8 Final Quality.)

So, the trick to contracting supplies is to find a supply used in a HIGH VOLUME but which accounts for a low cost (found on your Common Market page for the corp). There are A LOT of good corps this works with. Oil is still my favorite. Anyways, use the ASQ formula to determine which supplies you can buy at 100, and which ones you can contract at 296 or 333 and wind up with an ASQ of 190.

You then contract HIGH QUALITY supplies from the local or common market (use your own CEOs if you're doing the common market method - recommended method) and set the corps to buy 100Q on the world market for everything else. Each corp has a local/common market page and you can click supplies individually to be contracted. It doesn't take that much time unless you're doing something like 500 corps at once. I know a lot of you spend too much time on this game, so just bite the bullet and do it if you're going to be on anyways.

This will ALWAYS cut FMU costs (since no corp uses more than 66 FMUs they are negligible in the ASQ calcs), and more often than not cut your overall supplies bought costs by half or more.

Using this method you can also raise salaries higher before the added costs cuts into the production bonus. However, remember that raising production bonus means more supplies will be bought as well. Your contracts are only for 100% production, so unless you're running 100-200 salaries, you are already bleeding 100Q stocks into your contracts.

Let me explain it this way: Contracts are good for 100% production. Anything over that will be bought at your market Q, so suppose you are buying Cement (for construction corps, I believe) at 296Q, but your salaries are 800 and the corps are producing 155%. That means you are using 55% more cement than you have contracted. This demand is being filled by world market purchases at 100% (which you should have set your corps to after starting the contracts).

Therefore, it's important not to go crazy with your salaries, or you will find your Q falling. Periodically your corps will buy supplies in bulk too, which can tank your quality if you are using the contract method. One way to combat this is make sure you have around a 20-point cushion (plan for your corps to have ~210 Q after contracts instead of 190). This will allow you to run decent salaries and will make bulk-purchases less noticeable. Another method is to contract 333 or even 370 (from publics). This is why I recommend using a CM and CEOs rather than just local market.

GREAT ECONOMY (V.2 - good for warslaves)

Combine great economy v.1 with the Good Economy recommendation.

Get your most profitable corps built and upgraded, then IPO them to your CEO, then do the contracting method with them anyways. However, this alone will not increase profits for your country since, remember, private corps just pay 40% production at market value, so it doesn't matter if you are saving on the front end (although this is a good tip to remember for CEOs in general to increase profits).

You also don't want to raise salaries (I never ran above 400-500 in my war slaves) because it will increase your military spendings. What you CAN do, however, to siphon off some extra cash for your war slaves is raise taxes. I only did about 15%, and my corps never hurt because of all the money they saved, and my countries loved it... because 1, I could keep salaries low, and 2, could just tax for whatever extra I needed.

This is how I ran war slaves with simultaneous 1600+ Off. and Def. indexes and still managed to make 30-50B (net!) profit per game month. With only 20% deactivated, it would go up to 80-100B (or more with good markets).

Also, you can save more money in your CEO because private corps only need 160 ASQ to produce 296 final Q. Because of the changes to sales "quality cap" you are really wasting money if you are making higher Q than 296. Some argue 296 is a waste with high sales strats, but if you are doing the contract method it doesn't matter since you are saving enough money that it is OK to keep your products up there are a high price and not have them sell immediately.

(PROTIP: If you have a supply corp, make sure it's producing at 333/370 because not only will it benefit the corporation buying on contract, you will still be getting the 333/370 price for whichever corp is SELLING - see game news announcements about this fix. This is perhaps the ONLY way to make CMs profitable on BOTH ends. It isn't bad for score either.)

GREAT ECONOMY (V.3 - Experemental)

This version is something that worked GREAT before the "quality cap." It's basically the same as v.2 except you make your companies either ECPC or CCPC.

(PROTIP: For CCPC you want 75% taxes, because taxes come out before profit payments. You will get 75% of the profit and the remainder 25% gets distributed to share holders, of which you should get an additional 24.99% if you did it right.

PROTIP2: Use your IPO skills from the GOOD ECON model to distribute CCPC shares 24.99% to your country, 24.98% to two of your own CEOs, and the final shares to inv. funds in your other countries. It's very doable but be sure to turn off auto buy&sell for inv. funds first.)

Truly public corps also only need about 135 ASQ in order to produce 296Q products.

The effort involved in running truly publics and their diminished returns after the changes of this year really turned me off to them, so I never explored this option fully, but that doesn't mean you cannot have great success with it if you try.


Choosing Corps:

I already told you about determining the profit per-worker, but how else should you choose good corps? Well one method is obversation. Keep an intermittant eye on the world market and see which corps have good profit cycles. Nothing will ever substitute obversation. Another method is to choose corps that have a large market share. You'll notice corps like Oil, FMU, Services, Electric, along with others, have thousands of corps per world. They represent a large % of the total world market. This means they are more stable (prone to long red periods and short green ones) because lots of other corps need them. Ergo, there are A LOT of them. Supply and demand. You can find all the info you need on the Factory Utilization page (World Trade > Factory Utilization Last month). Watching this page will also teach you how to predict trends. For example, did you know that the LU Oil Market is happiest between 3500-3800 oil corps, and once it gets over 4000 there will likely be a longer-than-average green cycle until at least a 5% die-off happens? I do. I learned it from observing the Utilization page.

These are not skills that take hours bent over your monitor. A few minutes a day of mentally noting what you see and exploring what different information means is all it takes.




WildEyes' Military Guide:


~The Basics~

There are two things you need to keep in mind, and at first they seem contradictory, but bear with me.

1. Defense does not win wars. All defense is is a speedbump.

2. There is no substitute for a good defense.

Defense will not stop a determined attacker. Defense will not stop someone with a wealth of reserves coming for your country and the knowledege on how to use them. Hoever, most players are normally neither determined nor stocked with a weath of reserves, nor do they know how to use them!

So lets get started on what a "good" defense means.

1. You need an air defense. You should not have a country out of WP without at least 40,000 interceptors and 24,000 helicopters. Being in reserves does NOT count. You weapons are nothing but profitable swag for however CAPTURES your country if they are in reserve. They MUST be ACTIVE AND DEPLOYED. The air defense above will not break the bank. It is a light defense that can be brought down with under 300,000 oa2a missiles or 200,000 nfpm. However, for some players it will be more than enough to blunt or break their offensive, either from lack or ammo, lack of weapons (that defense will kill 8-10k nfp and roughly the same number of naked fighters), or lack of experience. There is nothing that will fluster an inexperienced attacker like higher-than-expected casualties when they thought it would be a cake-walk. This defense doubles its toughness if it recieves federation air support (always at least federate with your own countries - air support is crucial).

This air defense will need 1,200,000 interceptor missiles and 720,000 helicopter missiles. NOT A LOT if you start TODAY. (Protip: more ammo = better. Always. You can move in more weapons a lot easier than you can move in sufficient ammo in a crisis)

2. Defend your population centers. This is crucial in a defensive war: 500 Defensive missile batteries (DMB) and 500 Defensive Anti-Air Batts (AA) are a must in all your cities and in your capital at the very least. This equals 21 targets, which is only 10,500 of each battery, 21,000 total. With default garrison ammo, you will need 840,000 of each kind of missile to be fully stocked. Throwing in some Missile Interceptor Batteries (MIBs) is not a bad idea either.

3. Nuke defense. You need 2 Nuclear Defense Batteries (NDB) and sufficient ammo at each nukable site (ALL bases, cities, and your capital). 40+ nuclear defense missiles per site is a good number, and 60+ will garuntee that re-supply units arrive there before your ammo is edpleted. However, just make sure you are fully covered first! It does not good to have 60 nuke defense missiles at one city if you have 0 in another. (Protip: missiles in your stockpile usually means everything is fully supplied in the field, providing you have everything deployed and enough supply units.)

4. Forts. Strictly econ players *can* leave their forts undefended and hope that their air defense will hold the line for them. As long as the attacker cannot get ground units on you and start painting your country, it is unlikely they will win the war by destroying forts alone. However, ungarrisoned forts will not stop units from painting, whether it is an invasion or merely SF units. To prevent this, garrison at least 15 jeeps in your forts to stop painting (Tiny Garrison BluePrint with 100 jeeps in it, deployed at 15% across all your forts).


~Advanced Defense~

I don't recommend fighting defensively; however, sometimes it cannot be avoided. Either your resources are deployed somewhere else in an offensive campaign, you have been caught off guard, or you simply don't have the strength to slug it out. You can, however, grind the other person down with the blunt & sponge method.

Blunting consists in neutralizing the other player's ability to attack by sheer attrition: make his or her attacks cost more than your defending. Sponging means being able to absorb the losses better than he or she can.

The best way to blunt is through a great air defense. If the other player cannot break through your interceptors, then they can never use drones on you with any effectiveness. They cannot use bombers to clear heavy garrisons without unacceptable losses. Any missile-based or ground attacks will have your helicopters to answer to, and even if your helis get drained (covered in the offense section), if you have garrisons stocked with DMBs, the DMBs will whack the assault (as per bomber losses with ints still up).

My slaves all held 60k ints, the warslaves held 80k ints, and my two main ones were at 100k when i quit. They all supported helis as well, and among LDI I was always the lightest on defense, since I preferred a whithering, brutally punishing offense. I could provide over 500,000 interceptors in defense from my own empire alone. Assuming the ability to keep interceptors present in all countries (possible considering I had another 700k in CEOs), it would take ~300,000 or more NFP to break, or fighters shielded by ~6.25 million or more drones. All this, over the course of a minimum of 625 attacks (1250 wings responding in twos). That is a definative blunter.

As far as sponging, you want stocked garrisons, maxed to the 2001 limit (1999 batteries after subtracting the two for nuke defense). Use DMB, AA, MIB. There is no "right" combination of DMB/AA/MIB, because in true rock-paper-scissors fashion there will always be an opening, however small... and if you are balanced then it means the opponent can spread their offensive forces evenly. I personally always went a little heavy on MIBs with a strong backbone of DMB and AA for a number or reasons. Always start with at least 500 AA/DMB and then model the rest of your garrisons around that.

Advanced defense also means active defense. In this, bombers are your best friend. Bombers will pop any fleets near you. Bombers will let you eliminate critical targets of any attacking countries within range, and it's definately worth shooting through the air defense with your bombers if it means taking out the only O base.

Drones are also useful, since they will kill invading ground units better than bombers will. You also want lots of jeeps on hand, or other spare units, so you can form your own ground units to counter any enemy painting going on and re-claim your land.

Incidentally, a lot of defensive measure mirror offensive protocall, such as taking out offensive O bases, if possible (takes away their ability to fire missiles), strat bases (no nukes), and fleets (costly if heavily defended but worth it if they are relentlessly pounding on you). Even if you don't keep a lot of bombers in your countries you will always want ammo (ammo costs nothing to store) and you will want to make sure to have bombers in your CEOs for emergencies (weapons cost nothing to store in CEO).

Perhaps the most important technique in defending actively is to watch your newspapers and see how it is the opponent is hitting you. You should be able to discern this based on the casualty reports (which is why you should always have defenses!). If you opponent is losing LBCM or conventionals, then you may need to take out offensive bases. If your opponent is losing drones, fighters, or bombers, you can see the name of the units in your newspaper and then target them manually, killing his or her own drones, fighters, and bombers, with your own fighters. There are few things nastier than setting up a dozen attack wings and finding out that your opponent has always picked them off!


Offense:

Offense is what will win you wars. A solid defense will let you focus on offense.

LDI Protocall - Government & Early Floydian Doctrine

It is always best to fight in packs. Animals do it, and the ones in packs usually beat the loners. If you fight in a pack, you can divide the labor. This not only lets you focus on your job better, but it lets you carry it out more fully. If your sole job is air superiority, then you can stock air ammo before the war. If your job is ground & pound, then you will actually be able to run 100 different LRDs if you are allowed to focus soley on it. Fighting in packs doesn't always mean active combat by all parties either. Sometimes air defense is all you need, or someone who can spy targets with radar planes to save you the time - or send you some more weapons in a pinch. Never underestimate the impact of competent support.

The early setup of LDI was PinkFloyd did de-pop, Sam ran navies, Barney ran ground ops. When I came in I ran backup for Sam with navy and ran the regional defense along with suppression.

De-Pop = massive population loss due to nuking
Navy = Duh. Also, back then it meant shredding the air defense since NFP could attack 1000 at a time, and you could clear defense for the ground person.
Ground = secure ground access, paint & attack with LRDs. It's still the most effective kind of war if you can set it up.
Regional Defense = manage forward enemy threats such as navies or attack C3s
Suppression = keeping enemy O capacities down, keeping O bases down, strat bases down, monitoring for bomber wings popping up or attacks appearing in allied newspapers, etc.

WildEyes' evolution

This is what my own practice of specialization evolved from - something which Yankee does also. Specialize your countries for specific roles. There are many benefits. The first is economic. Believe it or not, I've always been an economic player at heart. In fact, I was such a good economic player it let me become the warlord that I am. Assign one or two countries to be navy slaves, make one a missile slave, make the next local air superiority, create a stand-alone fighter, create a regional defense slave. There are so many roles that a country can play in war that I don't see how anyone could afford to NOT specialize. A Navy slave with 25000 NFP and a stocked fleet with CMS and defense batts cannot also support a few million attack drones and all your fighter wings. Yes, I understand you want to kill air defense, but Drones + FP and navies are two different jobs.

Navies reach out and touch someone. Drones + FP are for any enemies that are up close and personal. You group your countries together mentally based on the roles you have given them, and in a war you switch out depending on what you need at the moment. (Protip: Two different browsers lets you be in two different countries at once thanks to cookies. Hell, try three browsers even.)

I broke my countries up into these roles:
Navy Slaves (explanatory)
Missile Slaves (LBCM/Convs)
Local Air Superiority (Drone/Fighters/Bombers)
Stand-Alone (balanced mixture of all capacities... jack of all trades sort of thing, maybe even a medium navy)
Regional Defense (LBCM, Bomber, Drone, maybe Navy w/ attack Destroyers)

Also: Stock ammo for ground units in your countries, preferably a cache in your secured main, but keep your ground weapons in a CEO. They are cheap enough that when it’s time to stage a ground invasion they are no problem to move out.

*Feeder countries. While I am personally of the opinion that all non-secured countries should be ready for war, there are others who suggest a division into general warslaves and econ or “feeder” countries. Barney Rubble, for instance, used to always recommend two feeders for every warslave. The feeder concept is useful for rapidly moving weapons from CEOs into where they are needed, but I find it better to have your countries ready with the basics already, and you shouldn’t need feeders except for extreme cases.

This also lets you turn your countries into sluggers (except the stand-alone country) because you can develop depth in their area. The one exception is that I always had at least 10k bombers in all my countries, because of the mentioned defense benefits, as well as their offensive utility. But the key is you have to COMMIT to what each country is, and understand how to use them in unison.


LDI Offensive Practices - Floydian Era

It is best to have a checklist of your goal/priorities in war. Pink Floyd contributed greatly to the early formation of LDI's procedure during the opening salvos of war. His motto was to declaw the enemy as quickly as possible. After that, strategy didn't matter since the enemy no longer had anything to hurt you with.

These are the targets that can hurt you: O Bases, Strat Bases, Navies, Deployed Attack/Bombing Wings, Invading Units on your borders.

Some things to be done BEFORE wars:

1. You can minimize the impact of invading units by declaring on all the C3s bordering you, blocking the enemy ground access. If they already have access, then "block" them with hundreds of units in your country. And besides, as long as your helis are still up, ground invasions will have a hell of a time.

2. Scan you enemy's country for deployed attack wings. You can normally see them. If you can't, use another country to view the target list from the sneak attack menu, then note which wings are up and need to be destroyed.

Opening Salvos:

1. Hit O Bases
2. Hit Strat Bases
3. Determine if attack/boming wings are a threat (are you within range? do you have a navy in the area? if the enemy hitting your navy?)
4. Disable navies

Nothing will slit your throat quicker than a missile attack. Some people still DO have the firepower to shoot through defense regardless of losses. Their missiles can also disable your offense as easily as yours can disable theirs. Kill the O bases.

Normally you shouldn't have to worry about nukes. You should have a good defense, but better not risk it if you aren't sure. Nukes won't win a war for someone, but they can make it unpleasent for you, especially if your military starts deactivating. I personally ignore strat bases unless I see a determined effort to brute force through my Nuke defense. This checklist is also from the days of the 99% bug. Nevertheless, I've still won many wars because people don't have proper nuke defenses and I de-poped them until their military deactivated.

Attack wings only matter if you are in range; however, if you see bombers hitting your navy, take out the bombers quick. Nothing blunts your long-range punch like losing you navy in the area.

Similarly, if someone is hitting you with a navy, kill it.

Finally, be ever mindful of someone trying to gain ground access on you.

Once you are certain the opponent has been de-clawed, start the tedious work of taking down their air defense.

HELICOPTER STRIP: You can strip helicopters by using your navy. If you fire 1 CMS along with 400 NFP, the enemy helicopters will respond. You will lose 1 CMS, but kill all the helis.

(PROTIP: It is not always ncessary to kill ALL the air defense. Simply breaking the int cover my be enough if you are well stocked on bombers, nfp, and drones. Similarly, breaking the helis may be all you need if you are strong on missiles. This is the importance of being able to "sponge" with your garrisons as a defender, because clearing strong garrisons can sometimes take a combined arms effort, which may require the entire air defense to be defeated first)

Modern Combat - Post-Floydian Tactics

After the exit of our brave and fearless Pinktator (HAIL!), several game changes were made. One closed a loophole that allowed the nuking of a destroyed base. Another change came that nerfed navies. However, things such as air droppings and remote deployment were also instituted, opening exciting new tactical possibilities.

De-clawing: De-clawing remains much the same as it used to, except for two caveats.

1. Strat bases can be ignored if you have a proper nuke defense
2. Navies can often be ignored, as per the following:

Concerning post-navy changes, LDI opted for a defensive posture, focusing on regional influence and domination. The change to navies, lowering the attack limit to 400 weapons as opposed to 1000, meant that they were no longer sufficient for taking down air defense, particularly fed defense – at least not as a reasonable cost.

This means defense is king as far as long-range wars are concerned and 800-int response will blunt and even break a navy, provided it can be kept up… which should not be a problem for anyone following the basic defense outline above.

Tips for breaking Air-D:

1. Defense is only as strong as its weakest link. Navies still kill ints 4:1 if you do not have a fed response. Break the air D in the weakest slave and drain the rest of the regional federation air defense from that location.

2. Gangbang navies. It’s a lot easier to spread the losses around than to eat it all yourself.

3. Mix in ground-based air. FP + Drones is your best friend, especially for breaking the weakest slave’s air D. Once fed air is broken, you can kill 1200 ints for the cost of 1000 drones.

4. Heli drain. If heli drain is responding while ints are still up, kill the helis and ignore the ints, especially if you have ground access or they have weak missile defense and if you don’t NEED to kill the ints.

Back in the hey-day of Navies, LDI also boasted the mega-zord fleets that most people have latched onto. These consisted basically of 40,000 navy DMBs, and they worked because in SC the defense always has the first shot. Thanks to the fact that no limit existed on weapons in a navy, enough defense could be concentrated to 1-shot any attack. 40,000 navy DMB will kill any incoming attack before it damages the navy or its defenses. For good measure, navy MIB can be thrown in, but 10,000 MIB is all that is needed to counter missile threats on a navy. Bombers always have been the real threat to navies, and 40,000 was the magic number to stop them (previously, LDI ran 10k/10k “government-era” superfleets, which would stop attacks from everything but bombers).

The GMs have since announced they would eliminate the ability to concentrate such defenses in navies, but so far all they have done is put in place attack limits.

To run a mega-zord you need 3 fleets. One aircraft, one fleet command, one heli carrier. Each one, like a base, lets you house 20,000 weapons. And since you only have 1 of each, it can never be totally destroyed. Just concentrate the weapons in one place, and remember you have a 60k limit.

Mega-zords CAN be sunk; however, also due to how the war engine works.

All weapons in the war engine fire a certain number of missiles/shells,each with a hit % and damage % against other weapons. Each attack is broken into 16 “mini-rounds.” Not all battles go the full 16 rounds (cf. game docs).

Anyone who has taken statistics knows that even if there is a 90% chance for something to happen, it can still not happen 5 or 6 times in a row; however unlikely.

Basically, megazords simply play the odds. Mass enough DMB in one place, there is X% their missiles will hit, and you have a 1-shot kill for the defense. However, because you break them up into 16, you shrink the pool and create more room for error. If 40,000 all fired at once, it will be an eternity before all miss, or even half miss each shot, but 2500 is a much lower number.

People have been known to fly bomber wings directly at fleets and after several tries sink the fleet. This is nothing more than sheer probability at work. Considering how few bombs you actually need to sink a carrier, it’s not surprising after half a dozen tries or so, the DMBs misfire and the bombers win.

>>>Another reason to have lots of bombers as long as megazords are around.

(Protip: To make a rough estimate of losses versus defense, check out the game docs. See how many times a defensive weapon fires, then factor in the accuracy and damage vs. what you want to attack with. There is the random factor – mentioned above – but you will get a more-or-less accurate idea, likely on the high side.)

After air defenses are down you have the grueling task of grinding the WI down to 0. As mentioned earlier, garrisons enjoy a rock-paper-scissors relationship to offensive weapons. Presently, the best weapon to clear garrisons is bombers. They are powerful and tough, and if interceptors are down you can go to town with them. Clear defenses with bombers, then pop the target with missiles or ground.

(Protip: Avoid attacking targets directly (especially forts!!) with bombers or NFP. It’s a good way to get your ammo chewed up

Protip2: NFP can be good for clearing certain garrisons, but AA + MIB even in modest numbers can be deadly against NFP)

Heavy AA Garrisons:
If someone weights their garrisons heavily enough with AA to make bombers an invalid option, then have likely opened up either missiles or ground as an option. Ground works best against garrisons weighted towards AA + MIB. If the garrison has light or no MIB and moderate DMB you might want to try attacking the defense with missiles, which can be extremely effective in cases. If the losses are too high for your liking, see if ground works better.

Attacking with Ground:
Ground units are cheap for a reason – they are meant to be lost. Don’t be squeamish about having your tanks and arty blown up. A real ground invasion should consist of no less than 30 full-strength LRDs. Don’t expect to come out of it with more than a handful. The best ground wars can use up 100 or more divisions. That’s an average of 1.5 targets before each LRD is dead – even less if you are supporting your LRDs with other weapons.

Prepping your ground assault:
2600 heavy arty & 1000 heavy tanks w/ equal ammo (400-500k is generous enough) is the “standard” (and cheap) LRD configuration. The arty acts as a meat shield for the tanks, because arty is targeted first by ground defenses.

(Protip: Tanks are hit first by helis.
Protip 2: Both tanks and arty can be used to shield OAAMB)

This LRD config is cheap and will get the job done; however, it suffers a few flaws: foremost is it is a sitting duck against an active defender. Even 1000 drones will shred this unit. An improved version mixes in 500 AA or even 1000 AA instead of maxing out the artillery.

500 AA and 500 MIB is another good combination, since the MIB will neutralize the drone missiles and much of the fire from NFPs also. AA & DMB combos can also be useful.

500 DMB can be a good counter-measure against a player who loves missiles. Often, I mix LRDs with different combinations of defenses in with the stock 2600/1000 LRDs. The fact that there are defenses in with your LRDs is often more effective than the defenses themselves, because it creates that much more hassle for an opponent.

(Protip: Beginning an invasion with disposable standard-LRDs mixed with all-defense LRDs is a nasty way to throw an opponent off balance.)

Occupation units are another means through which to support your ground invasion. These can be formed with as little as 125 jeeps, and they paint just as well as any LRD. They are also good as blockers in your defense. Occ units can also have defenses placed in them if you are so inclined. I just like them for the intimidation factor of 100 more units that I can just pop up at minimal expense.

MRMBs are a touchy issue with LRDs. They can be incredibly useful against heavy AA/DMB garrisons with weak MIB presence. However, MRMB do die first (before tanks/arty) and their ammo is far more expensive than tank/arty shells.

Forget including anti-tank missile batts, heavy jeeps, or heavy armored vehicles in your LRDs unless you are making decoys. Actually, if you are making decoys, use Land Defense Divisions, which look the same, but need half as many units, and you can use jeeps.

Landing Forces:

WHY DOESN’T ANYONE KNOW HOW TO USE FSCKING LANDING FORCES YET??!

This is something I’ve done over and over, and seen time and time again. Landing forces are the attacker’s best friend. Believe.

1. Military Transport: Lets start with this, because without MATs your landing forces aren’t going anywhere. 1000 is a minimum (50 wings), 2000 is better if you plan on launching a real operation. 4000 is prime if you are going to be doing serious airlifting of LRDs (although 2000 works in a pinch).

2. Special Forces: The key to these little guys is volume. I don’t know how many times I’ve seen people with tons of SF only to airdrop 3 or 5 at a time. If you are fighting an active player, you must drop tons at once. 20 is a good number. It is a little tedious, but not difficult at all. Moreover, when 10 come active on one game day, and 10 more the next (or 20 all at once!), you can cause a lot of havoc painting even in a well defended country.

(Protip: There is always wiggle-room to scoot your units and paint.)

SF do several things. One is psychological. It’s never a good feeling to see orange streaks across your country, or to go away and suddenly see lots of little red dots all over your map when you come back. Another is it ties up the opponent. Your opponent will not be able to focus 100% on fighting you, as he or she will have to frequently check and see if the SF have landed yet. It’s a real logistical headache to keep switching back and forth.

3. Rapid Deployment Forces aka Airport Construction Units (RDU or ACUs)

RDU go into ACUs, which can be landed in either an enemy or allied country and after 24 hours they become an offensive air base.

That’s all they do.

But they are very useful, as I will outline shortly when I get into fun tactics.


FUN TACTICS!

Forward C3 Bases:
It used to be you could slam weapons and ammo into a C3, but no more. Now you have to work in clusters.

Cluster up half a dozen C3s and fed them up. Keep some of them in the temporary WP and dedicate them to housing air defense only. They will cover your other C3s. Make sure the rest all have 100 forts, you’re going to quickly put the weapons you need into them and drop them from WP to dec. You can put up to 5 LRDs into some C3s these days without trouble. The key is to watch your MLM numbers.

To attack air defense from C3s, get 1000 FP into them, and then feed in as many drones as you can (drones only need 1 LLW each).

NOTE: It helps for all of this to feed the ammo in first, and then the weapons.

Attack the air defense while constantly re-forming the wings so that the fighters have enough drones to shield them. Go until you can’t feed any more drones in.

The air defense is crucial, because it will at slow down the counter-attack to take your C3s. Since you don’t have to worry about the air D c3s from being taken, you can feed more ints/helis into them also on an as-needed basis. Without defense though, don’t expect your C3s to last.

(Protip: Use disposables for the air defense instead of your main countries or fed. A smart opponent will use a C3 in your federation to drain the air defense without worrying about an 800 response.)

Land Bridging:
This is a favorite of mine. I like to claim it even though I know I’m not the only person to have thought of it.

It works because you can travel through any C3 you have declared war on, and your enemy cannot. It is good for linking a warslave to an enemy who doesn’t share a border with you, or it’s good for hiding your C3 clusters, by building them slightly away (or in another region). Most take action when it’s on their borders, but if you are a little ways away or in another region where maybe they do not look as often, you can get set up before they realize.

It works with more than C3s. Never take an ally who can give your forces permission to cross for granted.


Air Drop LRDs:

This works similar to a land-bridge, but you can do it over longer distances. It also eliminates the reliance on C3s somewhat, and lets you use a war slave for your heavy lifting which is less likely to be taken from you than a C3.

You can do it two ways also.

1. Take a C3, you can then air lift LRDs from any country (within 3500km) to its O airports. With 2000-4000 MATs, it only take a couple of game days. That means there is plenty of time to airlift all you need into the C3 in the time it takes for a war to go active.

The C3 can either border the enemy country or you can land-bridge from it.

Further, keep the C3 in its temporary war protection and you have an untouchable landing zone and staging base. If you fed it up, you can make sure there is air defense (and avoid getting drained since the C3 is still in protection) at all times.

2. Declare on a C3 and land an RDU. After 24 hours you can airlift units in the same as above. This has the advantage of not tipping someone off the same as taking a country in their region. In fact, they might not even see what you are doing and think it is just a random C3 dec.

Works with bordering C3s or you can land-bridge from it.


Remote Deployments:

Using RDUs you can extend the range of all your aircraft 3500km.

After you drop an RDU it turns into an O air base in 24 hours. When you go to deploy new air wings, be it attack/bombing or interceptor/heli, your RDU will now show up on the list as well.

(Protip: Name them accordingly to keep track of where they are)

You can create new air units from it just like bases in your own country. This is incredibly useful for extending the range of drone shields for your FPs, and it makes bombers an extra-long range danger also.

You can drop RDUs in your own countries or in federation countries too, not just countries you are at war with.


Scatter Fleets:

An old classic: Get yourself lots of fleet commands and put 1 nuke sub in each, then send them all over the map.


Miscellaneous Combat Tips:

1. You can destroy weapons at bases that are not destroyed by continuing to attack defenses after you destroy the garrisons. Works well with bombers, NFP, and missiles. Make sure you ONLY attack O bases though, because if you attack a D base, all the D weapons housed there will respond.
>>>This is a nasty hello to people who like to constantly take down and re-form their air D during battle to make sure their wings are full. Maybe it isn’t enough time to do real damage to their country, but start popping the O bases and O airports every time they do it.

2. You don’t need as many helis as interceptors. Adequate DMB in your garrisons should still be enough to discourage missile and ground attacks even should all your helis be drained.

3. D. Armored Vehicles are the only defensive weapons that you should ever think of putting in your garrisons apart from AA/MIB/DMB. Even then, don’t think too hard about it. DMB do the job better, and it’s one less ammo type you will have to buy. Don’t even think about light tanks and light arty.

4. If someone is actively hunting your attack wings with their own fighters, do this:
>Open two browsers, and log into two different countries.
>Create two or three attack wings in both
>Attack as quickly as possible with one country, dismantle the wings
>>Begin attacking with the other country’s wings as quickly as possible
>>Dismantle the wings in that country, and during the page loads reform the wings in the other country.
>>> Attack with the first country and reform your wings in the second country
Rinse, repeat.

You opponent will be running in circles trying to hit your wings, and by the time he or she is to the war page, you’ll be attacking with a different country. It takes some multi-tasking but it works great.


At this point I’m up to 7900 words and I’ve been typing for 4 hours. I know there is stuff I’m missing but my brain is shot and this is more than enough for now. Good luck with all this.

Ask me some questions and maybe I will come back to read them and answer some.

Dubhthaigh (Little Upsilon)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009 - 12:31 am Click here to edit this post
A great list Wild, you have some really great advice in there.

A few more things;

General Advice: Military

1. Never over-extend yourself in a battle. No matter how much stronger your warslave may appear compared to it's active enemies, you should always leave a large enough amount of offensive weapons untouched in it to repel any attacks directed against you. It is a classic large player mistake to expend all weapons against a tough but seemingly weaker country, only to lose their own the next month when they cannot destroy the opposing navies or bases. Only do it if you are 100% certain you can take that country, that month.

2. You cannot make an impeneterable defense. Defense is designed to slow or blunt an attack thus allowing you to counter. Defense can also be designed to make attacking so expensive your adversary gives up. Everyone has a price, and if you make it high enough, they will stop.

3. Always fight on your own terms; block ground access by declaring on your C3's, do this even if you just feel threatened. If the enemy is far away prepare against long range missile and bomber attacks, if they are very close, do the unexpected - attack war C3's with your own C3's, attack when you are expected to defend, and do not use the same strategy all the time.

4. There are many ways to wage an offensive war, but all methods have 2 things in common; they rely on the economy of the empire, and on the amount of patience and time(in long campaigns) the active player has. If you take one of these away, you will be in a strong position to win the war. To do this: find out when the other player can get on, make him change this time, if he is tired/frustrated he will likely give up. Once major threats to you are neutralised, hit them where they do not wish to be hurt - pounce on any economic war slaves, or asset righ weak nations. Morale plays a part online as well as in real life.

5. Always be prepared. Take Wild's minimum ammo recommendations, and double them, but put the excess in nations that are unlikely to be taken or are protected. Instead of letting ammo in garrisons sit at default levels, if you can afford it, increase them to near the max. Supply is a slow process.

6. Planning is key. At the start of a large war, print screen and copy and paste a map of all enemy locations and distances from yours. Write down the country names, and some short notes about the military capabilities they each hold. Then prioritise your targets and distribute them to federation friends if you are working together.

7. Respect your enemy. Although it is hard, never be arrogant, and always try and empathise and get into the mind of who you are fighting

General Advice: Economy

1. Have in mind what you want the country to be; if it is going to be a warslave, low government salaries are key. If it is going to be an economic slave, choose corporations (in line with Wild's economic outlines) that will make you the most profit for the amount of time you want to spend completing it.

2. Have many routes of income for your country - buy products when they are in a cheap surplus, and sell them when they are more expensive. Play the share market - it is faster and easier than ever.

3. Even though Gasoline and AF are the most profitable corporations for the state/public economy, make sure you diversify to at least 3 or 4 more varieties. 12 months of steady profit is better than 6 of high profit.

Tricks: Military

1. You can have unlimited amounts of 1 weapon units in your country. If you are ground invaded, have around 100 or 200 sf units in reserve, create 100-200 one weapons units from them, then deploy and move them around the whole country. Nothing is more offputting to an attacker than the proposition of clicking 600 times to defeat 1 weapon units.

2. You can see the garissons in an enemies targets before you are at war, just click on their map customisations page.

3. You can remove a navy defense by sending 1 drone attacks, i do not think you even have to be in range. It is time consuming but if you have nothing else to use.

4. You can use auto orders and contracts to bypass limits for bases and forts in a country.

5. Keep a few hundred thousand attack drones in you inactive reserves. You can reactivate 10% at a time, and they can be useful if you get into a bad spot.

6. Even if you have ammo being automatically ordered, always be on the lookout for a good deal. Buy weapons when they are in surplus and cheap.

7. Buy weapons at 100 quality. It saves you money and you lose little benefit.

8. If you know the opponent is running low on a certain ammo type, and you can afford it, immediate buy that product to drive the price up and ensure no quick and cheap solution is available to them.

Tricks: Economic

1. To avoid investment funds biting at your IPO's, sell and buy at the limited price of 120% share market value. They won't be touched.

2. When IPO'ing a corporation to your CEO, you can offer 100% of your own shares in the first round of buying and selling. Sell back 24.99% from your CEO and you have instant ECPC corps.

I hope this is useful, ill add to it when i can think of more.

WildEyes

Tuesday, July 14, 2009 - 12:40 am Click here to edit this post
A quick note on ammo, since I didn't really "recommend" anything, just listed that absolute minimum ammo needed to fully stock the absolute minimum defense. I recommend a lot more...

12000 missiles per int or heli wing
Each 100 batteries in a garrison has 8000 missiles as default.
Minus bases and state corporations you have 121 war targets (100 forts, 20 cities, 1 capital). So that's 121 garrisons + bases + corporations.

You all can do the math from there.

1600000 missile per type of defense battery is what I tell people for a minimum, and 1200000 int/heli will stock 100 wings.


Alarich (Little Upsilon)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009 - 03:13 am Click here to edit this post
i gotta say, Thank you so much.

Keto (Little Upsilon)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009 - 06:56 am Click here to edit this post
Wild, I think I'm going to cry...that was beautiful! Very well layed out and very informative.

Aaron Doolavay (White Giant)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009 - 09:13 am Click here to edit this post
Thank you for sharing. =) Good luck in whatever else you may do!

IndustMech (White Giant)

Tuesday, July 14, 2009 - 12:26 pm Click here to edit this post
One of the most helpful posts I've seen.

Thank you, I hope you return.

WildEyes

Wednesday, July 15, 2009 - 08:28 pm Click here to edit this post
Hehehe, I just read through what I wrote and noticed a few typos that confuse the meaning at parts. Smart players will figure it out anyways though, since a lot of the text is re-stating in different ways....

~~~~~~~ wonder if anyone's tried all this out yet...

The Manager (Little Upsilon)

Wednesday, July 15, 2009 - 10:41 pm Click here to edit this post
Very nice. I'm going to refer to this often.

Simcountry Introduction