The Farm Defense
Many people tend to overlook
the most basic defensive unit in the
game: the lowly farm. With 400
hit points and 20 armor, a farm
can take a lot more damage than
any unit, wall, or tower. They
cost 500 gold and 250 lumber
to build, which is about the same as a
scout tower. More importantly,
they're a necessary part of any
town- you can't stage an offense
without them. Since you're going
to build farms anyway, don't
hide them away in the corner- use
them to block off possible attack
points around your town. Back up
the farms with towers and/or
ranged units to pick off anyone who
tries to break through.
To defend against magical attacks
and catapults/ballistae, keep a small strike force of knights or ogres
one side, outside the blockade.
Only use them when you're attacked by units your towers or archers can't
out. Once your strike force
has been upgraded to ogre-magi or paladins, they can be used to support
archers/axe throwers by healing
or bloodlusting them. After each attack, pull a peon or peasant away from
normal duties and have him repair
any damaged buildings.
A group of ogres, normally kept away from the blockade, moves into action
against a ballista.
Invisibility is perhaps the
most versatile spell in Warcraft II. While blizzard is an invaluable spell
lends itself to so many creative uses that it helps to break up the “build
up, move out”
method of playing. From scouting
to assassination, offense or defense, invisibility can give you a great
Examining the Spell
Invisibility has a nice long
duration, and it can be cast on any unit in the game (except buildings,
of course.) An
invisible unit cannot be detected
or attacked by enemy (or allied) units. The exception is that
computer-controlled spell casters
can target invisible units with spells. Also, note that the unstable explosives
carried by sappers and demolition
teams will detonate if invisibility is cast on them. The biggest drawback
the spell is the high casting
cost. At 200 mana, you need one mage for every unit that you want to turn
The simplest use of invisibility
is scouting. An invisible flying machine is simply the best scout that
you can get.
With the spell’s long duration,
you can explore a large section of even a 128x128 map before the effects
off. By learning where your
opponents’ resources are located, you can better plan tactical strikes
cripple their production.
Once you’ve determined the best
place to conduct a raid- preferably a nice unguarded gold mine or a
blacksmith that’s been left
alone- load your strike team on a transport and turn the transport invisible.
able to slip right past any
naval blockades and land your troops where they can do the most damage.
Conducting several raids in
different spots can force your opponent to spread out his or her defenses,
them more vulnerable to a large
attack. If at all possible, load the troops back onto the transport and
back to a safe spot where they
can be healed.
Using an entire team of invisible units is generally impractical, but sending
a single unit, such
as a mage or catapult, can be very effective for wiping out a specific
target or building. One
favored tactic is to send a single invisible mage into the center of a
town and have that mage
cast blizzard around himself. Since the mage won’t be hurt by his own spell,
you can damage
several units before the opposing player can pull them back.
Stupid Peasant Tricks
For sheer annoyance value, try
turning a few peons invisible and start building towers in enemy towns.
walls to block off access to
gold mines can also be effective; hopefully, your opponent won’t notice
gold stops coming in. You might
also try using invisible peasants as blockades if your opponent has a crowded
town or narrow route of attack.
A tactic that can really drive
your opponents crazy is casting flame shield on invisible units. Although
shield doesn’t last long, the
invisible unit cannot be attacked until it turns visible. As long as you
are careful to
give the unit movement orders
only (use those hotkeys) it won’t turn visible until the spell wears off.
especially effective with destroyers,
which can use their speed to circle around larger ships.
Defending Against Invisibility
The basic defense against invisibility
is simple: don’t let your opponents build mages! If you can keep your
opponent busy building non-magical
troops and repairing damage to his/her town, you may be able to keep this
spell out of reach. Use quick
raids and tactical strikes to destroy mage towers and individual mages.
yourself against incursion,
limit the points of attack on your town by using farms and/or walls as
scouts, towers, and holy vision
to keep track of what your enemies are doing.
How Combat Works In WarCraft
How does armor protect units?
What is piercing damage? How effective are unit upgrades? This week we’ll
take a look at how combat works
in the Warcraft universe and answer some of these questions. Warning:
There is a bit of number crunching
A unit has four ratings
that determine how effective it is in combat. Hit
Points indicate how much damage
the unit can take before dying; an ogre
with 90 Hit Points can take
quite a bit more damage than a Grunt with 60 Hit
Points. Armor reflects not only
armor worn by the unit, but its innate
resistance to damage. All buildings
have an automatic armor rating of 20.
Basic Damage is how much normal
damage the unit can inflict every time it
attacks. This is lowered by
the target’s Armor rating. Piercing Damage
reflects how effective the unit
is at bypassing armor. Magical attacks, like
dragon’s breath and lightning,
When one unit attacks another, the formula used to determine damage is:
(Basic Damage - Target’s Armor) + Piercing Damage = Maximum damage inflicted
There is a 50/50 chance that
the attacker will do half or full damage with each attack. Note: if the
Armor value exceeds the attacker’s
Basic Damage, only Piercing damage will have any effect.
An Example of Combat in Warcraft
An ogre and a footman are engaged in combat. The ogre has a Basic Damage
rating of 8, and a
Piercing Damage rating of 4. The footman has an Armor value of 2. Every
time the ogre
attacks the footman, it has the potential to inflict up to (8-2)+4=10 points
of damage. Each attack
the ogre has a 50% chance of only inflicting half damge, or 5 points. On
average, the ogre will kill
the footman in about 8 swings.
The poor footman, on the other
hand, with a Basic Damage of 6 and a Piercing Damage of 3, will only inflict
3 or 5 points of damage each
time he attacks the ogre, which has an Armor value of 4 (that’s (6-4)+3=5).
Even if the footman is extremely
lucky and does the maximum amount of damage with every attack, it will
18 swings to kill that 90 Hit
Point ogre. By that time, the ogre will have pounded him into mincemeat
The most important thing to
remember with upgrades is that weapon upgrades
affect Piercing Damage. If the
same footman from the above example waited
until he had a double weapon
upgrade, he would be able to inflict up to
(6-4)+3+4=9 points of damage
with each attack, which is almost twice what he
was doing before. You can see
now why Elven Rangers are devastating in
numbers; fully upgraded, they
will always do at least 6 points of damage with
each attack against any target.
This tip may not change the
way you play Warcraft, but hopefully it will give
you a little more insight into
the inner workings of the game. Try playing around
with the unit combat values
in the Unit Editor to see how you can change the
balance. Lowering a unit’s Hit
Points and raising its Armor, for instance, makes
it more vulnerable to magical
attacks but increases its effectiveness against normal troops. You may
that against some players, you’re
better off upgrading your basic troops than researching new ones, expecially
if they like to attack early.
It’s Warcraft’s flexibility that gives it longevity. Above all, have fun!