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The Complete British 1 vs 1 Guide Part 2: Approach to Tiers

By daeyeth - 9th February 2009 - 09:06 AM

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Section 2.1: Tier 1: HQ Truck (HQ) IPB Image

The factors/questions in approaching T1 are as follows: What is my first unit out of the HQ? When do I move my HQ? How many units should I have before going T2 (Field Support Truck)? Do I build emplacements or more units before T2?

IPB Image What unit should I produce first (second unit on battlefield) from the HQ ?

Well, you only have three options here: you can produce a Tommy squad, a Lieutenant (LT) or a Bren Carrier. For the most part, we can exclude the Bren Carrier as an viable option simply because you really want another unit out that can help you capture sectors so you can start earning resources (fuel and munitions) plus you won't have enough munitions to upgrade the Bren Carrier which in my opinion is a necessity (the upgrade that is). This leaves you with the choice of either a Tommy Squad or the LT.

In analyzing 135+ games I found the majority of top players produce a LT as the first unit out of the HQ (Sepha 20/20 games, Sweix 35/35 games, IP4K 21/21 games, Rizky 32/32 games - the exception is DGN who builds a Tommy squad). The reason for producing the LT first is his speed on the field. The LT has a speed bonus and runs faster then even a Recon Tommy squad.

According to Sepha, "LT is built first because he can walk faster than Tommies, who are built after the hq moves because the earlier you get on resources the better and if you were to build Tommies before moving the hq then they would walk to strat points at a snails pace.".

The challenge for newer players when producing an LT first is that they seem to struggle with early rushes and lack of infantry fighting power. The key is to cap a few points with your LT and then get him closer to your infantry (unless they become pinned), you don't want to loss your LT early!

IPB Image Produce an LT first (your second unit on the battlefield).

IPB Image Produce another unit or move my HQ?

The next decision relates to either producing another unit from the HQ or moving the HQ.

If you chose to move your HQ at this point, then you should have already captured the sector (with your Recon Tommy squad) where you intend to park your HQ. Out of the 5 players I analyzed a majority of them (87%) packed up moved their HQ after the second unit (Sepha 20/20 games, DGN 26/27 games, IP4K 21/21 games and Rizky 31/32 games. The only player who seemed to alter this decision was Sweix who in 20/35 games he moved his HQ after the second unit was out and in 15/35 games moved his HQ after the third unit (2nd produced from HQ) was out and from my analysis this was more map based.

According to Sweix "On maps where there is a high or medium sector points I like to move my truck after I finish building my lieutenant. On maps where there are a lot of small points (for example Wrecked Train) I like to make an extra Tommy squad for faster capture before moving the truck."

So, if you decide NOT to move your HQ now, but decide to build another unit, what unit should you build? Most players agree that another Tommy squad (assuming you produce an LT already) should be the next unit out of the HQ. This is even the case whether or not you decide to move your HQ at this time. Once again, the theme is that you are producing another unit that can fight, move and capture. In addition, if you want to produce a Bren at this time, you might not have the fuel (because you have LT) and if you want to wait for the fuel, then you will most likely float MP. Addition you probably will not have the munitions to upgrade the Bren Carrier at this time as well (once again, the Bren Carrier is a required upgrade IMO).

Therefore, it is safe to say that at minimal you want to move your HQ after (no later than) three units are on the battlefield, most likely those units are: Initial Recon Tommy squad, LT and Tommy.

Now that your HQ is setup, you most likely won't have enough fuel to go to T2 (FST). So you can either produce another Tommy, build an emplacement (mortar, vickers) or get a Bren Carrier. The majority of players choose to get a Bren Carrier at this point (which costs fuel and will delay the FST a bit - but this is okay). In fact out of the 135 games analyzed a Bren Carrier was produced approximately 76% of the time and a majority of that dissent was from one player, Sepha, who opts to get another Tommy over the Bren - "A 3rd Tommy build is better because the Bren becomes a pretty useless unit after the 7-8th minute of the game when axis get panzershreks, pumas or some other kind of AT, the Tommies are useful for the entire game. That said, I've been making a Bren recently purely so I can combat puma rushing and the early pg ht rush better."

On the flip side of Sepha's view the Bren Carrier can be very devastating to Axis players early, especially when upgraded. According to Rizky, a "Bren carrier is good versus the bike rushes, chasing pioneers capping on the other side of the map and flanking ungarrisoned MGs. Versus PE it stands up versus all the light vehicles, suppresses early PG blobs and chases down capping PGs and kettens. I think a [weakened] Bren carrier is deserved, but I will still be using it. I think it just makes Brits more vulnerable to rushes in early game.".

Sweix takes a middle ground "Bren Carrier is one of the strongest units available in the early game. As you might have noticed, I always get a Bren only against Wehrmacht, because it is perfect for dealing with pioneers and mg42. It isn’t that useful against PE, as it often becomes targeted with infantry halftrack focused fire. Another important point of playing against PE is getting a fast Stuart. Bren always slows that down. My general rule for using the Bren is quite simple – keep it alive until I get sappers with over repair ability, then use the hit-and-run tactic with it. Also, I have concluded that Bren is very useful against fast Pumas Wehrmacht may get – with using the AP Rounds of course. "

IPB Image For more information on the Bren Carrier see DGN's Bren Carrier Guide.