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General Tip #74: Dealing with AC/Puma rush in 2v2

By AfTeRShoCk - 30th September 2008 - 20:47 PM

A farewell gift from Tamiya

The Puma and PE Armored Cars are very potent Anti Infantry Killing machines that if left uncountered will devastate your infantry. In the hands of a good player who properly micros these units to kite any infantry you may ask yourself... how can I counter these units in the quickest manner before I get drained of too much Manpower?

The idea behind the AC (Armored Car) rush is to exert Infantry Dominance, the AC combined with your own infantry will overcome an infantry only force fairly easily and can break the initial stalemate that happens around the 7~10min mark. This allows the Axis to gain back or gain more map control and try and gain a fuel advantage.


Prediction


Properly seeing a AC rush coming is the first step to countering. There are a few telltale signs that can provide clues to a Puma or AC rush.

PE AC: ACs can come ridicilously fast, as soon as 5 min so it can be hard to properly defend against it, if you do not see any Halftracks within 4-5 min, be prepared for an Armored Car. Early MP44s on squads is another indicator.

Wehr AC (Puma): Far easier to see signs of a Puma rush, No T2 units is an obvious one, as well as an OP on a medium/high fuel point, stormtroopers and an increased number of volks (T3 players need to have more infantry to fill the gap until storms).


Counters

British:

Tier 1
  • Trenches: ACs do very little damage to Trenches and the units within them, forcing them to go elsewhere to kill units.
  • Button Fire: If you can safely manage to button an AC then rush in other units to take a PE AC down quickly (if it's a puma don't bother as it will not take much small arms dmg.)
Tier 2
  • Sappers: Piats while they have a bad rap, they can do decently in a pinch to deter an AC from rushing in, combined with button fire it can kill an AC fairly easily, but it is not the best solution.
  • Bofors: This is the Anti-AC units, if you feel a AC rush coming and you can get one of these (or more) in a good location the ACs will be completely useless.
  • Stuart: No brainer really, but watch out for upgunned pumas, as you will need support to take them down safely.
Tier 3
  • If you manage to get a Cromwell (or god forbid a Firefly), handling the axis ACs will be cake.
Things NOT to do against ACs:
  • Do NOT drop Commandos anywhere near them.
  • Do NOT rush units in to try and button a kiting AC, you will only lose men and may run into his infantry. Either way it's a losing battle, get long range AT and lure him in.

Americans:


Tier 1 & 2
  • WSC: HMG; using the AP rounds can be powerful, but be sure to support it as an AC is quick enough to easily flank it and kill it.
  • Rifles: Green Cover against PE ACs can make your rifles survive long enough to deal some good dmg, BARs increase this damage.
  • Stickys: there are a decent gap filler AT option, but should not be your main one, it can be hard to get one off. If you must use them try and flank from 2-3 different angles to corner the AC in.
Off-Map Infantry
  • Both Rangers and AB are great Counters against ACs, just be sure to use them defensively, since they are expensive units and charging them in will cost you much manpower.
Motorpool
  • Quad HT: Excellent Counter to the PE AC and will quickly kill it, but it won't do much against the puma
  • M8: No Brainer again such as a Stuart is, again beware of a upgun Puma.
  • AT gun: Keep these at range and any vehicle will be toast. Be sure to support them or you may be flanked or overrun by infantry.
Tank Depot
  • Sherman: 'nuff said
  • M10: Will manhandle the axis ACs but again, be weary of the upgun from the Puma. For a tank, the M10 has very frail armor. You could get unlucky with several misses against the Puma which could put you in a bad position.
Things NOT to do:
  • Do NOT charge individual squads in to try and get a sticky or Zooka shot off, as you will lose much manpower. Instead use the Rangers/AB or Rifles to deter the ACs and if he overextends, then you rush in to finish it off. If you cannot kill it, it will only be repaired and you will have lost units for nothing.
  • Do NOT drop an airborne squad next to the ACs. Both the PE AC and the Puma have excellent accuracy against infantry falling out the sky and airborne don't spawn with RRs.
General
  • Mines: The single GREATEST counter to ACs, lay these at expected line of travel for vehicles and they will reward you. Pumas nearly always get dmged engines and ACs take a big hit in HP. Having a sticky equipped rifle, Buttoning Tommy or AT infantry nearby will take out this Infantry killing machine will little casualties. Good mines will not only hurt ACs, but will also show you where they are traveling.
  • Supporting AT Guns/ Vehicles: A Bren squad combined with an AT gun or Ranger is a great combo, experiment with these combos to find your strongest form of counter.
Things NOT to do:
  • do NOT send individual squads out to cap, these are exactly what ACs are built for, make sure to support all your units (with other units or mines in good locations). If you must send single squads, always have one eye on them and a finger on the retreat button, since they will be very vulnerable.
With good mine placement and combined arms, using variations of units from different tiers, you should not have much of a problem with ACs. Just remember: never fight when you can't win, unless you have a valid reason to fight.

by Tamiya


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