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Basics of the Oberkommando West
This guide will cover the basics of the new Oberkommando West army, as well as some beginner tactics. I will not be doing any in-depth strategy talk that inlcudes stats/values, just purely the basics to allow you to quickly get familiar with the OKW.
Greetings fellow General, i see that you have taken an interest in the Oberkommando West!
Be it because you wish to master them or simply because you want to crush them fast this guide will surely give you the information you need.
The OKW (Oberkommando West) focuses, unlike the Wehrmacht, on mobility and combined arms. You will learn that most OKW units complete one another and fight better in combination with other units.
As a OKW player you will start with a squad of Sturmpioneers and a basic HQ building that allows you to build Sturmpioneers, Volksgrenadiers, Raketenwerfer Anti-Tank Rocket Gun and the tiny but deadly Kubelwagen.
The Sturmpioneers are your basic combat and construction unit, better trained and equipped than their Wehrmacht counterparts the Sturmpioneers carry StG-44's effective in close and mid-range unlike the close range MP40's carried by the Wehrmacht pioneers.
Sturmpioneers can be upgraded with the Support Package which allows them to detect mines and repair faster at the cost of 30 munitions, the player can then switch between a fourth StG-44 or the minde detector. For the late-game OKW tank general this could prove to be a valuable asset, especially when on the move with several tanks that need fast repairs before going back into the heat of battle.
Sturmpioneers and Volksgrenadiers both have the ability to salvage fuel from wreckages.
The sWS; Best Friend of the OKW Player
Meet the sWS, the best friend of the Oberkommando West player!
The sWS is a core OKW unit, why? Because it transforms into structures that not only construct units but heal, repair and kill.
Without the sWS your army is going nowhere, sure, Volksgrenadiers and Kublewagen might be effective early-game but that luck of yours isn't going to last forever.
That's where the sWS comes in, a new sWS will spawn at a regualr interval untill you have all the three OKW HQ's or untill there's an inactive sWS on the field.
Located in the structure tabs is a small timer that shows when the next sWS will be arriving to the field, a wise OKW player will make use of them ASAP since they can also secure territory and be deployed close to the front, providing support to nearby units.
Each OKW building can deploy one or more vehicles, most vehicles from one structure fights better in conjunction with one or more units from the other structures.
These are the following sWS structure transformations:
(Battlegroup Headquarters, spawns three medics upon deployment that will heal nearby infantry when not in combat.)
(Mechanized Regiment Headquarters, spawns three Sturmpioneers upon deployment that will repair nearby vehicles and weapons.)
(Schwerer Panzer Headquarters, provides stationary AA, AI and anti-light vehicle support, requires one of the above HQ's to allow deployment.)
All of these HQ's can be constructed in captured territory, even right outside the enemy base.
Beware though, the Schwerer Panzer HQ 7.6 flak might be good for taking out hostiles but the sWS itself is fragile so make sure that you either bring along protection for the sWS or deploy it in an area where allies regularly pass by. (If you really feel like you need to be close to the front.)
The OKW infantry are few but well-equipped, well-trained and effective.
The OKW player's core infantry are the Volksgrenadiers, comprised of veterans and recruits these infantry squads excel at long- and medium-range combat. Combined with infantry support weapons and most OKW vehicles they are a force to be reckoned with.
Volksgrenadiers also have the ability to construct sandbags, providing heavy directional cover ideal for when you need to good static defenses for that crucial fuel point or for that victory point that is about to get hit by a wave of pesky conscripts.
They also have one of the best infantry upgrades in the game: Cold immunity.
That's right, you didn't read wrong, the Volksgrenadiers can be upgraded with the Combat Package, for 90 munitions they receive one panzerschrek and immunity to the cold!
Volksgrenadiers with this upgrade can be critical to have on winter maps, giving your frozen tanks efficient AT support that can knock out a T-34/M4 Sherman with ease.
Ontop of that a wise OKW player could potentially use them to reclaim lost or capture hostile territory during blizzards as most enemy infantry will be returning to their bases.
Another basic OKW unit that can last even late-game is the Raketenwerfer Anti-Tank Rocket Gun (holy♥♥♥♥♥♥ that is a long name).
The raketenwerfer is a small and mobile gun that fires the same type of rocket used Panzerschreks, however it has a longer range which allows it to snipe hostile vehicles and tanks before they can even hit back.
Remember those static Volksgrenadier defenses i mentioned? Yeah? Well, they just got the ability to snipe tanks before they can cause harm. A tank with a broken main-gun isn't of much use in a assault against a victory point y'know.
Did i mention that they can be garrisoned inside buildings? Well, they can...
And if the Raketenwerfer wasn't enough the OKW can call in the 7.5cm 1e.IG 18 Infantry Support Gun, another mobile multirole weapon in the OKW arsenal.
The ISG have, depsite its tiny barrel, an impressive range and works as a light anti-tank gun, there's a twist to it though: It can also fire its gun as mortar, making the ISG a formidable weapon against light-vehicles, light-tanks, infantry and static defenses.
Bring along a few of these with one or two Volksgrenadier squads on your next attack on the enemy base and you won't even have to worry about keeping those infantry in check or risk getting caught in HMG fire.
As i said before most OKW units work in conjunction with each other and all of the above gives the OKW player many options and opportunities.
A non-infantry OKW unit that can make all of the above even better is the halftrack with the Infrared Spotlight, position one of these close to your defenses and your ISG's will start picking off infantry before they even get close, it also gives you time to prepare for a possible imminent attack, scout empty areas of the map and set up ambushes.
Last but not least is the OKW Obersoldaten, they are the only OKW infantry unit that isn't trained from the starting HQ building.
Obersoldaten are tough, elite soldiers armed with long-range rifles and a MG34. They remain useful even in late-game, protecting vaulable assets or providing fire support alongside tanks and whatnot.
Personally i combine Obersoldaten with either Volksgrenadiers (AT-AI mix) or with heavy vehicles such as the Panther.
The vehicles of the OKW are many and vary in size and function, some are best as support vehicles staying behind the bulk of the other OKW forces while others excel at hit-and-run tactics.
Either way they all serve a purpose and like the rest of the OKW they work even better in combination with other units.
The first vehicle avalaible to the OKW player is the Kubelwagen, very fast and good at scouting it is also very fragile.
Most useful early-game these tiny LMG-armed cars provide some fairly good anti-infantry support, should a Kubelwagen stand still for about a second it will deploy (an icon over the unit marks the deployment) and start dealing suppression against enemy infantry.
This can be useful for flanking situations, using a Kubelwagen to lay down fire while your other units attack from the side or simply to guard chokepoints.
Overall it can be an useful unit but i wouldn't recommend sending one along your tanks, especially not considering that it is the weakest scout car in the game.
Next up is the Luchs light-tank, fast speed and a effective weapon with a good rate of fire makes the Luchs a really good choice for taking out infantry and light-vehicles.
It deals a tad lower damage in comparison to the Russian T-70 but it makes up for it with the fast-firing 2cm gun. The Luchs can work even in late-game, effective as an escort tank for your more heavy vehicles it will shred infantry and light vehicles allowing your Panthers/Tigers/Elefants etc. to focus on the bigger targets.
The Puma is also another fast and effective OKW vehicle, armed with a 5cm gun it is good against light and medium tanks.
I'm sure that many veterans from the firts CoH remembers the Puma, i promise you that it haven't lost its charm.
My personal recommendation for the Puma is to use it alongside one or two Luchs tanks, in a group they will become a fast and hard-hitting vehicle group dishing out damage to advancing infantry and ligh-vehicles as well as effective base defense-clearers.
Following the Puma is two different Halftracks, one an iconic CoH1 Wehrmacht vehicle and the other a mix between the Ostwind and a regular Halftrack.
The Flak halftrack is a useful asset on the field, especially when defending a key location or for when you need your infantry to advance.
The flak halftrack deals alot of suppression towards infantry and can shred light vehicles and scout cars, just like its Russian and American counterparts.
However, it cannot fire it's gun untill it has been deployed.
Deployment of the flak halftrack is easy, once it stops it will deploy right away, folding down it's sides allowing the gun to rotate. Once given a new movement order it will quickly fold up and start moving again.
The other halftrack is the SdKfz 251 "Walking Stuka".
In the first Comapny of Heroes the Walking Stuka was a upgrade for the regular halftrack, here in CoH2 it is an unit by itself. Effective against most static and non-moving targets the Stuka will launch six 28cm Wurfkoerper rockets in rapid succession.
I'm sure many Wehrmacht and Panzer Elite veterans remember using the Walking Stuka halftracks/Hotchkiss's against enemy bases and how absolutely devastating the effect could be when there was more than one vehicle launching the rockets. (I am also sure that many US/UK veterans remember the fear of hearing that iconic Stuka sound as well.)
One thing has changed though, when firing the Stuka the area of effect is no longer a wide circle but a wide stripe instead. (See below.)
This allows for more precision targeting and regardless of were the halftrack is located it can launch rockets both vertically and horizontally of its own location, arrows inside the stripe shows what order the rockets will splash down in.
It is now time for a new unit; The Jagdpanzer!
Good speed, good armor and good gun makes the Jagdpanzer an effective tank hunter, even better now that we have the TrueSight system in CoH2.
The Jagdpanzer have an impressive range, a pair of Jagdpanzers alongside a King Tiger or Panther is surely enough to make the enemy think twice about wheter or not to attack with their own tanks...
While we're on the subject of tanks, the OKW have the ability to field Panthers.
I'm not going to be writing anything lengthy for the Panther as it is the same type used by the Wehrmacht in CoH2, literally no difference.
Last but absolutely not least is the OKW Sturmtiger!
Essentially a much bigger Brummbär the Sturmtiger sports a co-axial LMG and a big f*cking rocket-firing gun!
(Sturmtiger alongside a Luchs and a Panther, a deadly combination.)
The Sturmtiger is a even better building-killer than the Brummbär and even though the bigger gun it has the same speed although it lacks the ability to requisition a pintle-mounted MG42.
There's another twist too: Sturmtigers cannot fire their main gun by itself. Both firing of the of the gun and the reload of the gun has to be done manually via unit abilities.
The Sturmtiger is highly vulnerable when reloading, making escort protection a must-have! Without protection the crew of the Sturmtiger will be killed, even when they're busy doing stuff inside of the Sturmtiger. (Meaning that when you see them crawl back in they're still vulnerable, because, y'know, taking tank-hits while standing up and moving in a small compartment is a very bad thing.)
And that marks the end of the Vehicle section since i pretty much covered the Infrared Searchlight halftrack while covering the infantry.
Oh, i almost forgot, the absolutely last vehicle in the OKW arsenal is the King Tiger!
The Tiger B, also known as "Köningstiger" (King Tiger) is a powerful variant of the normal Tiger. It has been upgraded with a bigger gun, heavier and better armor as well as more powerful engine.
The King Tiger is a endgame unit, it requires alot of fuel and manpower and all three regiment HQ's.
Thanks for reading this guide, i hope, regardless of favorite army, that you found this guide useful and that my humor wasn't too dry. Please favorite, thumbs up and leave a nice comment if you did.
If this guide is deemed popular enough i will cover the basics of the more late-game OKW units as well as add tips from other experinced players. (If you have a good tip that you'd like to share right now just start your comment with @Viper: and i'll check it out.)