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A Comprehensive Soviet Unit and Meta Guide for Newbies (WIP)
A comprehensive guide to the, strengths, weaknesses, and meta to the Soviets in Company of Heroes 2. The intent of the guide is help players get a better grasp of the concepts of the Soviet vs Wermacht game. The intent of the guide is not to give an explicit strategy or build order, but to help guide players create their own.
Readers are advised that the author takes some specific and opinionated stances on how the game is played and are advised to take it all with a grain of salt.
If this guide has helped you with your play, please up rate it! :D
Since I only generally write when I'm drunk/exhausted, there's a couple grammatical errors here and there. I'll get around to fixing them sometime.
The Soviet Union in Company of Heroes combines large masses of infantry with quick mechanized armor into a formidable and aggresively oriented force. Players of vCoh and Opposing Fronts will notice the distinct similarities in playstyles and units between the Soviets , Americans, and Panzer Elite. A good Soviet Player will be aggressive and unrelenting onto his German opponent; breaching his defenses, overtaking his mgs, and burning his bunkers. He has numbers on his side, but time can play against him if he is not persistent in his aggression.
Strengths and Weaknesses in comparison to the Ostheer
"The Mongols have nothing on our hordes!" Strengths 1. Larger unit sizes - Soviet Union units come in larger sizes than their Wermacht counterparts; often having 50% more men in a squad. Larger squads means that the unit as a whole is slightly less vulnerable to HE damage. One grenade may have the explosive radius to hit every member in a 4 member grenadier squad, but not everyone is likely to get hit if the squad is 6 members. - This advantage is most apparent when it comes to support weapons where Russian support units have 50% more the amount of men in their squads compared to their German counterparts. Larger infantry squads also make recrewing support weapons much less of a hassle.
2. Mobility - From the start of the game, the Russians already have a strong kit that allows fast and aggressive gameplay. Conscripts have oorah, which increase they're speed and their T1 building allows the deployment of the Russian Scout car which can cap if infantry is garrisoned inside. With these units, a good Soviet player can take the map quite quickly. - This trend in mobility continues throughout the game. Maxim MG's move and setup signifcantly faster than their German Counterparts. T-70's and T-34's are both remarkably fast and are equipped with abilities to allow them to cap points by themselves.
Weaknesses Armor and Anti-Tank -Most Soviet tanks, with a few exceptions, will lose in direct head to head combat against their Wermacht counterparts. Even the mighty Su-85 will die in 3 direct hits from a Panther. Soviet infantry AT is notably weak as well. You can only count on At grenades and anti-tank rifles to temporarily disable a German tank , but not to destroy it - Soviets are instead encouraged to rely on their superior mobility or combined arms to defeat German tanks. This often involves a combination of a tank disabling ability from an infantry squad to hold it in place, and another tank or AT gun to finish the job. -Properly microed Su-85's may also do the job.
Defenses -While the Soviets are great at taking land, they do not have the same quality kit as the Germans that helps them hold the land. Even some of their stationary weapons such as the Maxim seem to favor a more offensive style play. Russians can only build sandbag defenses, while Germans can build bunkers with flexible abilities and have a larger selection of landmines.
Early Game vs Late Game for Soviets
Win now or don't win at all!
As of the creation of this article, (July 2013) there at least seems to be one noticeable trend balancewise: Soviets have a distinct advantage during the early game stages, but have a disadvantage during the late game stages.
For those who have played vCoh multiplayer extensively, they'll probably remember a similar situation with Americans vs Wermacht. Americans had to win by midgame with rifleman and at gun superiority before the Tiger came out. Because this is a trend that has crossed between the original and its sucessor, it is possible that this element designed into the game and probably won't go away.
So why do the Soviets have the early game advantage? When the game starts, combat is generally based around infantry. Infantry is where the Soviet generally have the advantage due to their larger squad sizes. German players generally are forced to play reactionary and defensive during the first few minutes.
However, once the game transitions into the mid-late game, the units on the field now include vehicles that generally have signifcant defenses against infantry. This is where the game starts swerving in favor of the Germans. Their armor generally is signicantly tougher than their Soviet counterparts and will win in head to head fights. Because of this, Soviets now generally have to rely on combined arms or su-85 masses to defeat German armor superiority.
So what's my point for Soviet players? Have the game decided in your favor before those tanks come out! [/b] You need to seize some level of superiority, whether that be in numbers, resources, or quality, before the late game runs around. Take advantage of what's given to you during the first 10 minutes of the game and make the best of it!
Don't get me wrong, it is more than possible for a Soviet player to win during the late game stages and for the German Player to win during the early game! (BAD BAD BAD FOR YOU) A skilled and lucky player can make weak cards work in their favor. If you've failed to secure a victory by lategame, you still have a chance!
Munitions and Fuel
Fuel is the both factions (most especially Wermacht's) lifeblood. Munitions are your means of depriving them of this."
Keep this above context in mind when planning your capping strategy.
While Fuel is the number #1 priority, don't EVER forget to secure a munitions point or cache. Soviets in order to play their early game advantage must have a large income of munitions to pay for molotovs, grenades, smoke grenades, satchel charges, and flamers. Unike the Wermacht, most Soviet units do not get weapon upgrade options for munitions with the exception of Guards and Conscripts under certain commanders. This means that Soviet units are heavily dependent on their their abilities in order to inflict damage.
In contrast, Wermacht NEEDS fuel like a fish without water. They need it to tech and build their most effective units. Unfortunately for them, they are also forced to pay a fuel and manpower cost in order to tech with no immediate gain.
A good Soviet player will exploit from this need by playing aggressively in order to deny signifcant fuel income to their enemy. This can be done by either caping the fuel point, cutting the fuel point off from the main base, and destroying fuel caches. By doing so, he delays the Wermacht in deploying their best units. A good German player will attempt to respond by establishing a strong defense around fuel points . most often with mg42's, and maintaining supply lines to it.
For Soviet players: do what you can to actively hamper your opponents fuel lines. Its not necessarily a matter of securing it for yourself, but rather at least denying to the enemy. If a German player can hold onto even one fuel point or cache for a good majority of the early game, he'll be ready to transition into the late game relatively quickly. Try your best to stay on top of tech as well. While it's absolutely imperative that Germans hold fuel, you still NEED to tech as fast as possible as well in order to hold any sort of advantage.
Combined Arms and Ability Synergy
Company of Heroes is a game about combined arms. No one unit is perfect and can be expected to win a battle by its own. (Theoretically of Course) Your ability synergize the abilities of your units in the Soviet Union is absolutely crucial for sucess. Almost every unit has something that can work in conjunction with another for devastating effects.
Here I will present some basic and unconventional techniques that can help your play.
1. Guards Vehicle Button. This is a powerful ability that effectively stuns an enemy vehicle for the duration of the power. By using this, you create a window of opportunity for other units to deliver lethal blows. Note that if the gunners buttoning ever stop shooting, the stun will cease and the vehicle will return to function. Try to avoid commanding your guards any movement during this power, or they will stop buttoning. -Combine with AT grenades, satchel charges, or AT guns for sucess. .
2. Smoke Mortar and Grenades One of the most unutilized powers ever. The smoke blocks LOS and allows you to move units discretely. Even if units are spotted in the smoke, they gain signifcant resistance to both damage and suppression. -Combine with flanks, grenades, and flamethrowers for gooey German bits. - Smoke is also great for concealing AT weapons. I've taken out tanks by using smoke as a screen for moving At guns..
3. Demolition Charges Another unutilized ability. Its self explanatory, but its uses are quite awesome especially in COH2. You can place charges on bridges to blow them up when troops try to cross. You can place it in the river if you want to create a sink trap. You can stick it in a half track, run it into an enemy base, place the charge in front of his HQ and detonate it when he retreats infantry. -One thing I haven't tried but I REALLY want to do is to try placing a demo charge on top of a group of landmines as like a super trap.
4. Satchel Charges These things can work quite well against stationary units and vehicles that have been immobilized due to buttoning, at grenades or ramming. Think of it as a super grenade with a longer timer. Their power is absolutely devastating. One satchel charge is enough to kill a fuel/munition cache. The satchel charge if targeted against enemy support squads will ALSO destroy enemy equipment in the process to prevent them from recrewing it. -Combine with Clowncar to make a super raiding party.
5. Clowncar+ squad of your choice. Personally I find this setup a bit overpowered, but its certainly there for Soviet players to use. Stick a flamethrower, sniper, Guards with AT rifles for an extremely annoying early game harassment unit. The clown car gives the occupants signifcant protection without signifcantly affecting their accuracy. NOTE: Each man in a squad has a 50% chance of dying in the explosion if the clowncar is destroyed. For those who are bad at math, that's a 25% chance your entire sniper squad will die.
Basic and Advanced Infantry Concepts
This is just a short section that provides basic information any player Soviet or German can utilize.
1. Cover is directional and is negated by flanking or close range. - This concept should seem very intuitive. If your units are shooting at an enemy in cover, but are facing the enemy's exposed backside, the enemy's cover will not protect then. If you close the distance to the point where both of you are directly across an adjacent piece of cover, the cover will have no effect on either you or the enemy.
2. Some weapons will do Full damage to units in cover and less damage to enemies that are exposed. ^ This is how it worked in VCoh and it SEEMS to have stayed in CoH2. Correct me if 'this has changed - Grenades and flamethrowers will actually do more damage to units in cover and less to units that are exposed. . Think about it, these weapons are about spreading as much collateral damage as possible. If there's something that will confine it, then it will do much more damage around. If I throw a grenade into a trench, the explosion will be much more destructive (Sharpnel would probably ricochet) to those inside the trench than if I had thrown it at them in an open field.
3. Supression is less effective to units in cover or smoke.
4. Certain weapon crews when reduced to one member will cause the last member to rout. - Some weapons, specifically mortars and At guns require 2 members to move and fire. If the number of men in these weapons are reduced to one, the last one will rout, and the weapon will be effectively "dead." -Keep this in mind that some weapon crews are more vulnerable because of this.
5. Snipers are only invisble when in cover or recently in cover. - A mechanic about snipers that has changed signifcantly since COH1 was in how they cloak. In vCOH snipers could cloak on command and would only be revealed if they shot, or an enemy unit closed in. - In Coh2, Snipers will only cloak while in cover. This cloak will remain with them for a short period if they leave cover. (German snipers stay cloaked longer.) A sniper that is not in cover for a certain amount of time will be visible.
6. Flamethrowers can have catastrophic effects on your own units. One thing that was not in vCOH was the possibility that a flamethrower detonation would result in massive aoe damage around it. In COH2, flamethrowers now pose a signifcant risk to both the operators and other units. If you are using flamethrower squads, avoid bunching them together less you risk other units catching on fire.
7. Some buildings can have blind spots where they have limited or no apertures to fire from. - Say you see a grenadier squad garrisoned in a building. You can either attack from the front and take the full dps of the entire squad, or attack from the left side which only has ONE window from the squad can shoot from. Which side do you attack? It should be quite obvious.
8. You can use explosives to BLOW OPEN, new apertures of fire in buildings. Say you're attacking a garrisoned MG from a position where the squad cannot fire back do to the lack of apertures. You carelessly throw a satchel charge at the building and fail to kill the Mg squad. Well good going idiot, that hole you just opened in the building is now a firing spot for that MG.
9. The bigger the building is, the better defensive position. Small buildings can be a death trap. -Weapons that are effective against units in cover (mortars, grenades, flamethrowers) are weapons that do area of effect damage. This means that buildings where the men are more spaced out will mean that they are much less vulnerable to these specific weapons A grenade may take out one man, but because they're all so spaced out, the other men will be unharmed. It will take more time and more munitions to dislodge them. -This works in the reverse as well. if you stack up all 6 of your men into one tiny cubicle building, that grenade coming through the window will hit EVERYONE.
At Gun, Vehicle, And Artillery Tactics.
1. Note that that armor system from COH 1 has been simplified - Very common knowledge that hitting a tank flank is preferable to the front yet I see so many people try to have their t-34 trade blows with a Panther's front - The concept of Side armor seems to be missing from COH 2. Instead of having it's own armor value, hits to the side will either factor in a front or rear armor value...depending where the shot was closest to. - Strangely, Panzer 4's get side armor skirts at veterancy 2, but it seems to apply a general endurance boost to all sides.
2. Avoid bunching your vehicles together or moving them around cluttered areas. - Vehicle pathfinding in COH is NOTORIOUSLY bad. (Apparently it got better since vCoh, but i'm in the opinion of the vice versa.) - Vehicles when surrounded by obstacles ( tree stumps, vehicle debris etc.) or other vehicles tend to collide with them a couple times. This can be a death sentence in a pinch.
3. Abuse blindspots to make ambushes with your tanks and AT guns. - Great thing about COH is how LOS works. Units will not be able to see an AT gun if there's something in the way such as building. Many a panzer has been lost because it ran through a corridor without checking the corners.
4. Tanks can run over infantry. - This is relatively microintensive and risky technique that can result in a relatively quick squad death. - Infantry will generally try to move out of the way of your tank, but if there is no where to move,(say you the infantry have thier backs against a wall,) then SQUISH.
5. Properly placed landmines can be devastating. Landmines almost certainly guarantee a kill on infantry and a disabled engine on vehicles. They are generally a cheap and sneaky way that absolutely disrupt and infuriate an opponent. Place these along common paths to delay enemy troops or finish them off when they retreat. Sneak engineers on their side of the map and lay landmines where he would least expect. Be creative!
Psychology 101: How your mindset affects how you and your opponent
"War is more mental than physical"
COH2 can be an absolutely stressful game. Managing infantry squads, territory points, unit positions, resources, commander call ins, while the Wermacht are storming your base with Panthers can be a daunting experience.
The stress factor plays a huge part of COH and in any other major stressful activity you do. While some enlightened individuals actually do better when stressed, us common folk generally don't. Stress makes us angry, it makes us careless. It makes us not realize we accidentatly launched artilery at our own base. When we are cursing out the world we don't notice that our shocktroops are freezing to death or our IS-2 just fell in the river.....♥♥♥♥.
My best advice honestly? If you want to play at your best consistently, do everything you can to maintain a calm mindset before and during the game. Ever notice that every once and a while when you're relaxed and playing in a non-serious manner, you actually play better? It's because that stress isn't bogging down your head.
So take breaks between games. Do something else. Relax, Read a book. Meditate. Swigs of Jack Daniels. Whatever works!
But even more importantly..... STRESS YOUR OPPONENT TO MAKE HIM PLAY WORSE.
Making your opponent nervous or stressed will incline him to make silly mistakes. Anyone who's watched some professional starcraft know of the Infamous "Indra rage" and its results afterwards. I've seen players accidentatly drive their rocket halftracks straight into my SU-85's after my teammate provoked him.
Some Do's and Don'ts.
DON'T try to provoke your opponent over chat. ---- It's unprofessional, immature and distracts you from your own play.
DO make him feel caustraphoic. ---- A common thing that happens to German players especially in the early game is constant capping and intrusion Soviet players can inflict on thier meager amount of territories. A constantly hurried german player may delay his tech by neglience or feelings of immediate necessity. --- Base raids can be an unexpected shock to the opponent. German players are used to setting a front line and expect the Mg's at home to keep things secure. Engineers, demo charges, satchel charges, and halftracks can quite easily shake this sense of security.... or you could just plant a tank in front of his retreat point.
DO make him paranoid and wary ---- A string of nasty and unexpected tactics can infuriate an opponent. German players ABSOLUTELY detest the sniper. If you can keep them alive, it'll play a huge factor in how he moves his troops throughout the battle. ---- Unexpected landmines can also do this as well. If you have muntiions to spare, tripwires can chip away squads with the same annoyance factor as snipers.
DO provoke careless attacks ---- Probably the most effective psychological factor, you can metaphorically twist an opponent's arm by baiting him with what seems like an easy connfrontation into a catastrophic lost. In the past, I've baited panthers into T-34 Ram traps with things such as an Su-85's backside. Huge turnovers are great morale shockers. ---- Artillery can do quite a similar effect. Being bombard always prompts unit movement, and can force a hastily planned attack. Bombarding an enemy base may have minimal effect on inflicting casualties, but it can make him nervous.
DON'T take unnecessary risks to freak your opponent ---- It's generally better to do any of the aforemention tactics when you've already established some advantage. A player knows when hes winning. A base raid when you've lost most of the map seems more desparate than intimidating.
Dealing with "General Winter"
Personally, I absolutely hate this mechanic. Blizzards seem to come at seemingly random moments. Because of their effects, they can make or break your game. They are probably the biggest RNG factor this game has added to date.
REGARDLESS of my opinion, its a feature that is unavoidable and will stay. (Because relic doesn't let us blacklist maps. in automatch.) So it's important to study this mechanic indepth.
If there's one important thing to point out about the winter mechanic: The Importance of micromanagement increases signifcantly on winter maps. Your ability to adapt to a frequently changing battlefield will be tested on wintermaps. Expect certain strategies and units to perform better during the winter and vice versa.
Some Important Points.
1. Unit line of sight decreases dramatically during blizzards
For both players, this results in some extremely dramatic changes ------ CQC becomes extremely favored. Shock Troops, scripts with ppsh, flamethrowers, and PZG will have snow to mask their approach ------ Lone Mg's Armor, and Anti Tank guns are vulnerable without spotters. They can be easier to assault provided your units aren't freezing to death ------ Armor, (most especially the Su-85) becomes extremely vulnerable to close range infantry anti-tank due to loss of LOS ------ Artillery units and abilities dependent on LOS (I.E. Button) become harder to use.
2.Getting around can be an absolute hassle.
Snow signifcantly slows down units treading through it. It may generally be quicker to direct your units to use the roads. While roads don't offer any protection (Infantry get a negative cover bonus), you can certainly move units out of danger much more quickly than compared to if they were bogged down in the snow. (Vehicles especially)
3. Units suffering from cold, not only die, but perform worse in combat.
Some players I've seen sometimes attack with squads already freezing to death. Not only is itsuicide, its ineffective. Freezing units fire slower; thus with less DPS.
4. Conscripts can also build fires.
Something that occasionally goes unnoticed
5. Buildings become much more ideal positions.
Units do not suffer from the cold when garrisoned. If you must hold a specific ground for some time, you may avoid having to pay manpower to build a fire by placing the squad in a nearby building.
6. Rivers and lakes freeze up
Because of this mechanic, new avenues of attack open up on certain maps that have bottlenecks and choke points during the summer. That river that would block your path during the summer is now a potential path for your next assault. Static defenses are more easily flanked.
7. Call in artillery and airstrikes are disabled during blizzards
While General Winter generally encourages both sides to lessen the fighting, it provides ample opportunities to seize territory without worrying about those annoying strafing runs.
8. The ice on frozen rivers and lakes can be broken to sink units atop of it.
A highly situational technique that's rarely used. But if executed correctly, can easily kill off a squad or tank.
9. You have an early game blizzard protection option: the Clown car. Blizzards for the most part will not occur until the early game is over. However, if you can keep the clown car alive past the early game stages, you'll have a portable cold proteciton unit.
10. Burning vehicle wreckage can provide temporary heat.
a nice complementary prize when you lose your IS-2 I guess.
Soviet Infantry Squads
They're a pretty straight forward unit. Your base builders, minelayers, and occasional bunker buster. Without flamethrowers, they have absolutely minimal combat value. As a general rule, keep them out of the fighting. They'll earn their kills through saboteuring
If you have a clown car, pairing it with flamethrower engineers can make an extremely effective anti-mg unit for flanks and burning them out of buildings.
Incomparson to Pioneers ---- Cost 40 mp more ---- Armed with Mosin Nagants. Will lose against pioneers in close range ---- Has access to demolition charges. (Pioneers don't!)
If you're coming straight from the campaign, FORGET EVERYTHING it has taught you about these units and how to use them.
These unit are like a utility knife, they can perform anti-infantry roles, flanks, aggressive capping, and some limited Anti Tank.
Note their selection of Grenades, almost every decent player uses conscripts, and almost every decent player will unlock all of them.
AT grenades are almost guarantee engine damage. If you have proper AT, that's a death sentence for any tank.
Note "Oorah." Why don't I see more players spam this ability? It increases their move speed and combat prowess tremendously. It's a GREAT way to maximize stolen weapons such as panzershreks.
Merge is also a nice ability. Allows you replace dead crewmen on support weapons and supplement damaged squads. If added to a different squad, they will adopt the squad's weapondry and veterancy. (Veterancy bonuses need to be confirmed!) However they will retain their conscript stats. A conscript joining a shock troop squad will not get their armor bonuses.
Keep these units ALIVE. They become exponentially better with veterancy. even capable of handling Panzer Grenadier Squads if the circumstances are favorable.
Incomparison to Grenadiers ---- These 2 units are almost completely even. Whoever wins in a straight up fight between these units will depend on both micro and whoever is willing to devote more munitions to the fight.
3. Penal Squads
Most players don't ever touch these units. Personally I'm a huge fan. They fill a unique niche in both demolitions and Anti-Infantry.
Flamethrowers and satchel charges make this unit quite effective in urban combat operations and bunker busting. A satchel can take a bunker down to 1/4th health and flamers can finish it off from there.
Has signifcantly more DPS and survivability than conscripts....will die like flies still.
flamethrowers are double edged sword on this unit. With veterancy the unit will roast grenadiers into wienerschitzel. However the pathfinding for whoever holds the flamer is EXTREMELY WONKY. Not to mention if there's a catastrophic explosion, it's almost certain to hit everyone in the squad.
4. Guards Infantry
quite possibly the most infantry unit besides conscripts...and for good reason. They combine excellent anti vehicle support with some limited anit-infantry abilities.
YES I meant LIMITED anti infantry abilities. The anti-tank rifle's they carry around are practically useless against infantry and the rest of the troops carry only mosins. Grenades and DP-28's help allievate the issue, but DP-28's can only fire while stationary, limiting their ability to attack positions. Panzer grenadiers will stomp this squad at close range. I find vetted conscripts are a more cost effcient form of Anti-infantry almost all the time.
Guards have signifcant durability which is great, but becareful putting these units in danger. 2 AT-Rifles and 2 Dp-28's means that there's a signifcant chance that the squad will drop a weapon that can be used againt you.
Note that buttoning will only work if the Dp-28 can fire and DP-28's can only fire with stationary. Ordering your guards to move after a button command will interupt the vehicle stun.
unsuprisingly because of their name and heavy weapondry, guards are easier to use when on defense than offense.
In comparison to Panzer Grenadiers ---- PZG's offer more deliberate power in AT and AI. Guards provide excellent utility. ---- PZG's are non-doctrinal, have a training time and require tech. Guards are doctrinal, require commander points, and are deployed immediately.
5. Shock Troops
Obscenely expensive, twice the cost of conscripts and grenadiers, and a 1/3 more expensive than Guards and PZG, but these are quite the best anti-infantry squad in the game. Great accuracy, BODY ARMOR, ppshs, and grenades make this squad effective at stomping any form of German infantry. Even PZG must fear Shock Troops.
Just to state again, the cost of shock troops is TWICE that of conscripts. Think before buying them. Can you do more with 2 conscript squads (or engineers) than what you can do with 1 shock troop squad?
You know that secondary grenade that all of you ignore? Yeah the smoke grenade! Use it ..please...it's OP .
Only infantry squad that absolutely lacks Anti-vehicle abilities. Once the Germans transition into late game and their forces start to compromise a signifcant amount of tanks, their battlefield value decreases.
NO SERIOUSLY, use that smoke grenade. Throw it in front of that half dead t-34 thats retreating. Enemy will lose LOS and will no longer fire on it.
FOR ♥♥♥♥S SAKE: that smoke grenade will PROTECT YOUR UNITS FROM STRAFING RUN FIRE.
Soviet Weapon Teams
General descriptions are kinda unnecessary. You should know they do. I'll discuss only comparisons between their German counterparts.
1. Maxim Heavy Machinegun Team
Incomparison to the MG-42 ---- Wheeled carriage allows for faster movement and quicker setup time. Veterancy grants Sprint ability. ---- A much smaller cone of fire compared to the MG-42. ----Signifcantly more accurate than Mg-42. Will have more effective DPS ---- Slower ROF than MG-42, takes an extra burst or two to supress enemy troops. ---- 6 Men to a squad
Avoid giving these to the enemy. Maxim's increased DPS is ruthless against conscripts.
2. Mortar Squad
Incomparison to German mortar squads. ---- Recieves precision shot through veterancy ---- 6 man squad- ---- Slower ROF than German Mortar
3. 120mm Mortar squad
Unique traits -----Extremely large range for bombardment. ----- 6 man Squad ----- Mortar can be carried and operated by one member. Last member will not abandon weapon ----- Decent damage even towards vehicles and tanks
4. ZiS-3 Field gun. (Soviet AT GUN)
Incomparison to the Pak 43 ---- Slower ROF, less range (need confirmation), less damage/penetration chance ---- Capable of artilery style bombardment. ---- Can be deployed almost immediately ---- 6 man squad.
5. Sniper Squad
Incomparison to the German Sniper - Twice the squad size, More durable) - Slightly Shorter Range - Slightly Slower ROF - invisibility out of cover lasts only momentarily. German snipers stay invisble signifcantly longer - Unlocks sprint ability.
Given their smaller hp count per man, this unit is HIGHLY vulnerable to splash damage. A rifle grenade can potentially one shot this unit.
These units go along the maxim: "mobility over power." (Except the Katusyha!)
In order to use these untis effectively you must be able to take advantage of their speed in order to position them in the best tactical spots. They WILL have trouble sluging out with their German counterparts, however when properly microed can prove to be an ABSOLUTE PAIN to Ostheer.
1. M3a1 Halftrack-Scoutcar (The Clown Car)
The dreaded clown car. Absolute terror to the German early game . Allows the garrisoning of infantry squads and snipers and provides them with mobility and cover. When properly microed, they can a thorn to german early game.
Anyone remember Jeep micro from Vcoh? You can use this unit to actively disrupt enemy movement. Push infantry out of cover, block infantry and vehicle pathfinding.
When garrisoned with flamers, the unit turns into a highly effective anti-mg unit, immune to supression and with speed to flank.
When garrisoned with a sniper, the sniper gains substantial mobility and defense, butalso retains the unit's long range.
When garrisoned with guards, the halftrack allows the anti-tank rifles to fire while on the move, turning the unit into mobility light AT.
Note, each man in a squad has a 50% chance of dying if they are inside the vehicle when it explodes, so get the squad out before it happens. Know when the vehicle is lost before it is destroyed and get your units out.
a panzerfaust will cripple this units mobility, 2-3 will kill it out right.
2. M5 Halftrack
Quite honestly, I've rarely ever,used this unit. Don't get me wrong, this unit is USEFUL, but by the time you have a chance to get it, you'll have much greater priorities.
Can reinforce infantry on the field, It's slightly less important for the soviets, because conscripts can merge into depleted squads
Lighter armor than the German halftrack. But allows garrisoned units to fire from it.
Germans rage enough against the clowncar, but the M5halftrack allows double the trouble? Have a strong early game advantage? Want to troll your enemy? Throw TWO flamers or snipers in this and watch your opponent panic to deal with this plus the Halfrack's stronger armor.
Munition upgrade trades the garrison ability for flak cannons--- Good and against infantry and suposedly defends against aircraft. (In practice, it's random on stopping strafing runs and etc.)
3. Katushya Rocker Launcher
Your standard bombardment unit. Absolutely decimates a target area.
Longer range than the German rocket counterpart, but signifcantly slower and more vulnerable to raids.
Gains focused fire with veterancy. Great for devastating stationary targets or knocking out a bridge. It will do substantial damage even to tigers!
Speed over power blah blah blah, same ideas here. Take note that some units can capture points with veterancy.
1. T-70 Light Tank
Fast, cheap and multi-talented. Quick rushes to this unit can be devastating if it comes out before the Ostheer have reliable AT.
relatively high ROF and accuracy. The dps on this unit is quite high
Excellent at raiding. Fast speed allows it to hit unprotected caches. If it gains veterancy, you will be able to use this unit to capture enemy points.
Great at running down enemy units. It'll keep up speed with retreating units and pepper them with shots while following them into their base.
Can do "okay" damage to Panzer 4's when shooting at their flank.
2. T-34 Medium Tank
A relatively dubious unit. The unit moves fast but its armor is relatively weak and its weapon has poor AT abilities. It will lose head to head to every german tank. Very cheap however manpowerwise. If you have a decent fuel income, you'll be able to spam these.
Its 76-mm Cannon is decent against infantry with its large AOE and will almost certainly kill a member and damage other squaddies every shot.
the 86mm Cannon version trades some of its AI firepower for a longer range and better armor penetration. (Su-85 maybe a better choice for AT still)
Ram is probably the only serious reason to get this unit. Ram allows you severely disable an enemy tank. You may damage the engine, completely immobilze the enemy tank, disable its gun, or a combination of the 3. However you will likely do the same effects to your t-34, so its generally only good to use this on enemy Heavy tanks to ensure a level of cost effectiveness.
Ram has a chance to fail horrifically. You may end up causing NO EFFECT on the enemy tank, while crippling your t-34. Pray to your RNG GODS
Gains ability to cap with veterancy....Kinda pointless however since leaving this unit unsupported is generally a bad idea.
This unit is more important in Team games where Heavy tanks are more likely to make an appearance in siginfcant numbers.
As stated earlier, this guide is HIGHLY opinionated, during discussions about the gameplay, I've found that others hold completely opposite opinions. (Unsuprisingly)
Because of this, I highly ENCOURAGE you all to look at other sources and influences to help your gameplay.
1. Gamereplays.org This old website used to be a hotbed of information for Vcoh 1. Unforunately the community for COH2 has not had a similar surge in interest. Regardless, it's a great place to watch replays of highly skilled players, and the Tip of the week is something quite nice.
3. Saigo's "Controlling the Battlefield Guide" (http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=157784409) Good some of you have probably at least glanced at this already . Still he explains some very fundamental and vital skills that will help your micro in COH2. I highly suggest giving it look if you haven't already.