Out4Blood & El_Cap's Rise of Nations Strategy

Monday, December 01, 2003

Basics of team strategy
One of the glaring holes in RON theory is the entire subject of team strategies. There's very little if anything published about team strategies. There's a few forum posts here and there and there are several recorded games of high quality players playing a team game, but there's not much other than that. And most of those examples are merely reaction to rushing or booming by one or more players. No what we're talking about goes much deeper than that.

There are several categories of strategy in team games that are worth exploring:
  1. Strategies for complementary civs

  2. Strategies based on map type

  3. Strategies based on opponents' nation choices

  4. Strategies based on victory conditions
As an example of a strategy for complementary civs, you can test out the combo of Turks and Mongols. This comes from the imagination of El_Capitan. Both of these civs have good rushes, but they are usually not that threatening in team games. The Mongols can't reduce a town, so they are reduced to merely fearsome raiding. They are good at it, but you can defend against raiding. The Turks have the power of siege, but need an army to bring it safely to bear on the enemy towns. However, together they have a synergy that has the potential to be devastating. An early classic by both players followed by Mongol stables and Turk Siege factories results in an immediate and free army. By hitting one player early with the siege, the Mongol mounted troops can reach the battle quickly, guard the siege, and capture the reduced city. Meanwhile, one of the free horse archers can harass the other player forcing him to react to the raiding, keeping him from booming hard. Once the first player has been taken out, the game becomes 2on1.

Another potential strategy is to use Bantu and Mayans together to establish an early and impregnable foothold in the center, particularly effective on certain map types where there are an abundance of resources in the center, such as African Watering Hole, and Great Sahara. This strategy is both based on complementary civs and map types.

As you can see, there are a lot of interesting options. This is but a tiny sample. I'm hoping to spark dsicussion and practice of more and better team strategies. However, most team games seem to be random teams, so coordinated activities (such as civ selection) never seem to happen properly; there is plenty of work to be done in that area of the game. Of course, this might require changing the culture of only RANDOM TEAM games among high-level players, and a harkening back to clan vs. clan matches.

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