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The Near-Ultimate Osteer Guide - Part 1

By stonethecrow01 - 22nd August 2013 - 11:37 AM

The Near-Ultimate Osteer Guide

Introduction


Hello and welcome to the first instalment of the near-ultimate Osteer guide! This one will be eventually followed by the complete Soviet guide (some time in the distant future). This guide will not provide in-depth specific strategies and unit analysis but aims to give an overall understanding of the whole faction, as well as some tips and tricks along the way.

Contents:
  • 1v1 content only - Team Games may be covered in a later (much later) guide
  • General Build Orders
  • General Unit Functionality
  • Teching Options
  • Veterancy
  • Commanders
So without further ado, let's jump into the guide!

Tier -1: Pre-Game Strategy


Intelligence Bulletins


Something that makes CoH 2 unique from vanilla CoH is the ability to customize your strategy and make decisions that will influence your play before the game begins, namely, by selecting your commanders and intelligence bulletins.



Let's start with intelligence bulletins. Almost all of the bulletins provide a very small benefit to some factor of the game, however, this small benefit can actually have a large in-game impact in some cases.

First let's discuss some of the factors that should go into choosing your bulletins. The first and most apparent limitation on selecting a bulletin is that you must unlock it either through ranking up or performing certain in-game actions. It's worth noting that many single player actions contribute towards the requirements that these bulletins have.

Is the bulletin buffing a doctrine unit? If you are buffing a doctrine unit, make sure you have commanders selected that can access that unit in the same outfit. Remember that any game you don't use this unit is a waste of a potential benefit to some other unit.

Is the bulletin for an early or late game unit? Buffing an early game unit has two advantages over buffing a late game unit. One, if the game ends before you get your late game units out, that's intelligence on late game units wasted. Two, if you are buffing early game units, the benefit of the doctrine will last all game, assuming the units stay alive that is.

Finally, and most importantly, what bulletins actually have a tangible in-game effect? Many may look at the benefits and answer: none. This is not true, the answer lies in the murky depths of the statistics of CoH2. Some of the most effective bulletins are for early game Tier 1 units. While 10% extra MG suppression is effective, it's the 3% extra health on Grenadiers that really shines. The reason being the number of shots required by Conscripts to kill a single Grenadiers divides exactly into the individuals health (CoH 2 stats is down at the moment but from memory 16 damage a shot into 80 health = exactly 5 shots). So even a 1% health increase means each member of the squad requires an extra shot to kill from Conscripts. So you're thinking big deal, one extra shot? Well when you factor in that Grenadiers have armour that prevents a percently of shots doing damage, the Conscripts need to hit first, the benefits of cover, the that the extra shot required to kill each Grenadier means they are shooting back at the conscripts longer, it actually gives you a substantial advantage versus "vanilla" conscripts in the early game - May be the difference between locking down a cut-off or fuel.

The same is true the other way around (buffed Conscripts need one extra shot to kill from Grenadiers), it is worth noting that a damage buff bulletin will cancel the extra shot required to kill each man. This means if you both have health buffs on your basic infantry but you have damage as well, it's as if only you have the health buff.

Remember that after the initial engagements of the game a lot of other factors are introduced that reduce the effectiveness of the health buff bulletin (eg. cover, different unit types, weapon upgrades, grenades/molotov's, previous damage, supporting units etc etc).

A final note is, damage buffs to area of effect weapons, for example, mortars. Make the most out of small increases. If shell lands amongst 5 men, they are all getting the 3% extra damage.

The second pre-game decision you can make is your Commander choices.



Commander choices


You have up to ten Commanders to choose from (depending on if you got retail, pre-ordered, collectors edition, or managed to scrounge some from somewhere else). You are able to select three to bring with you to the battlefield against the red horde.

You want to choose Commanders that can do two things:
  1. Gives you variation between styles of play
  2. Complements the weaknesses in the strategies you intend to use.
Variation in Commanders means choosing three Commanders that allow different overall benefits. If you choose three commanders that max out at 4 command point abilities, you probably won't have a lot of late game punch regardless of which one you choose. If you choose one Commander that lets you get the Elephant, one that lets you get Artillery and one that lets you get the Tiger, you have more options late game - can't break through their defences? Good think you have the option for Artillery. Another way to vary your Commanders is between early, mid and late game benefit. A Commander focused for each period of the game allows you to choose the one that will benefit you most when you need it most.

Just as in vCoH, choosing a Commander who complements the weaknesses in your build can be very effective. The most common example in vCoH was going Blitz doctrine for Stormtroopers when rushing Tier 3 so you had Anti-tank infantry mid-game. In CoH 2 the choices aren't as clear cut but if you are planning on going heavy tier 1 and 2, you might want to choose a doctrine that allows the Panzer 4 Command Tank so you can get armour on the field without teching for it. The possibilities are as limitless as the strategies you employ.

Some benefits provided by the various commanders will be discussed later at the appropriate points throughout the guide, but for now we are done with Tier Negative 1, or the Pre-Game element of the guide. On to Tier 0/1