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Platooning 101

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thunderthies #1 Posted 19 May 2015 - 02:38 AM

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It’s generally well accepted that platooning with another tanker of similar skill will help improve the chance for sweet victory. And while having two 55% WR tankers on the Green team is certainly better than only one, there are specific platoon-based tactics that can help you push the envelope even further, allowing you to overcome otherwise insurmountable odds to come out on top and bring home the win.

 

So check it…

 

Synergy

 

Synergy is when the sum of the parts is greater than the whole. In other words, when 2+2=6. When platoonmates are working synergistically their efforts are strengthened and they become a truly formidable force.

 

In order for a platoon to operate synergistically they must be in either close proximity or have direct line of sight. Otherwise, they are operating independently and their effectiveness is diminished.

 

Synergy is, in my opinion, the single greatest aspect to a great platoon. Two tankers who may otherwise play at a 55% WR level can easily play at a 65% WR when the following methods are employed.

 

Spots and Shots

 

Despite what class of tank you are in, you can still act as a spotter. Spotting for your platoonmate, and if you’re lucky your team, can put some serious hurt on the enemy, especially if a few of them are camping. Here’s an example of how to execute spots and shots:

 

The current trend on Oasis palms is for the entire team to lemming train to the northeast corner. However, occasionally you’ll roll up only to find the area completely vacated. This means one of two things has happened:

 

  1. The Reds are spawn camping.
  2. The Reds have lemming trained to the southwest corner

 

Ninety-nine times out of 100, when the Greens roll up to the northeast corner and find no targets, they sit on the hill tops and wait for someone to light them up.

 

Great.

 

This means either you or your platoonmate should continue along the easterly border and use the protection of the dunes to creep up on the Red spawn. Most of the time you’ll find targets here. And when you do, you should take cover. Why? Because you’ll be the only one on the entire team that is spotted.

 

Your platoonmate, in turn, should focus his fire on whichever enemy is advancing on you, targeting you, or closest to you, in that order. You may not get much damage, but your platoonmate will, and you’ll be closer to a win, which is what matters.

 

This tactic can be used on any map in practically any situation, but the key factor here is that the platoonmate that is not spotting must actively protect the one that is.

 

 

Focus Fire

 

I know. I’ve covered this like a bagillion times before. But it’s critical. Focus fire is when both platoonmates target the same enemy to quickly dispatch them. It’s better to have one dead Red than seven injured ones.

 

For newer platoonmates I recommend calling out targets so you are both on the same page, but as you progress and become more acquainted with one anothers’ play styles you should both automatically select the same targets.

 

Bait and Switch

 

The bait and switch maneuver is when one platoonmate gets the attention of a Red and lures them into view of the other platoonmate. This works best with a TD/Heavy and Med platoon but can be done with any two tanks.

 

Let’s use Oasis Palms again as an example, and again, let’s say you’re heading up to the northeast corner, except this time you don’t have backup, except for your JgPz. E 100 platoonmate who has his barrel locked on the hillcrest in your direction.

 

To execute the bait and switch, draw an enemy or two over the hillcrest highlighted in red and continue backing up into cover. At this point your platoonmate can send a VW sized chunk of lead into your target.

 

Again, this tactic can be used on any map and in any situation, but requires a high degree of situational awareness and confidence in your platoonmate.

 

 

Tap Out

 

Tapping out means to switch places with your full health platoonmate when you are down to a one-shot kill. Remember, a gun in the game can still do damage, no matter how little health you have left.

 

A good example of tapping out is on Fort Despair. Let’s say both platoonmates are piloting their beloved T110E5s, because they both know OP that tank is, and are making their way down the easterly wall of town, otherwise known as “Death Valley.”

 

Oftentimes the Reds will hull down in the northeast corner either behind the embankments or on top of the broken structures. When this happens you are forced to play peek-a-boom and victory normally is given to whoever can sidescrape/angle the best.

 

But what happens when you are the point of the spear and taking massive damage? What about when you have 30 health points left? No problem. Just switch positions with your platoonmate and fall back a bit. Only take opportunistic shots and let your platoonmate put in some work.

 

Tapping out can mean the difference between having the last stand be a 2 v 1 or a 1 v 1.

 

Abandoning a Target

 

There some times when abandoning a target to move on to the next one is the best move to make. This is, of course, very specific to both the situation and the tanks you and your platoonmate are driving.

 

Here’s an example…

 

It’s down to you and your platoonmate against four Reds. You’re driving a JgPz. E 100 and your platoonmate is driving a T-62A.

 

You’re both caught in the easterly valley of Dead Rail and your platoonmate is viciously fighting against an enemy FV4202. The rest of the Reds are coming from the opposite direction, trying to box you in.

 

You launch a shot into the back of the FV4202 and bring him down to 400 health. You know your platoonmate can handle the rest, so instead of sitting there and waiting until tomorrow for your reload to finish, you should instead begin your rotation towards the opposite direction so when the Reds arrive you’ll have a nice surprise waiting for them.

 

This type of planning ahead can mean the difference between being prepared for the next wave or getting caught off guard.

 

This is all I can think of for the moment but this will be a WIP piece and any suggestions and/or ideas are welcome.

 

 


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_G_E_M_ #2 Posted 19 May 2015 - 02:39 AM

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WOW that was an amazing explanation and FINALLY I'm the first person to actually put a plus one instead of being like the 50th one! Great job!

 


Unitater #3 Posted 19 May 2015 - 02:50 AM

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GREAT GUIDE MAN! +1

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thunderthies #4 Posted 19 May 2015 - 02:52 AM

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View Postpurplemonkeys11, on 18 May 2015 - 06:39 PM, said:

WOW that was an amazing explanation and FINALLY I'm the first person to actually put a plus one instead of being like the 50th one! Great job!

 

Thanks, dude! :)


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thunderthies #5 Posted 19 May 2015 - 02:53 AM

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View PostMrUnitato, on 18 May 2015 - 06:50 PM, said:

GREAT GUIDE MAN! +1

 

Thanks, Unitato!


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Excel_Spreadsheet #6 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:06 AM

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Great guide. I'm thinking about starting to platoon, so should be useful :)

_law #7 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:06 AM

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"Get two birds stoned at once."

Ksftwe #8 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:07 AM

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Nice guide, I think you've covered everything that needs to be said. And you bring up a good point; contrary to popular belief, platooning does not just hand you easy wins. I see too many sloppy platoons everywhere whose members are simply wandering off on their own, ignoring their surroundings, trying to lead a two-man-army and dying instantaneously, etc. You don't need TeamSpeak to have a great partnership either; 99% of my toons are with players who I've never TS'd with, yet still have gone on 10, 15, 20-game winstreaks with.

 

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thunderthies #9 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:08 AM

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View PostDreogo, on 18 May 2015 - 07:06 PM, said:

Great guide. I'm thinking about starting to platoon, so should be useful :)

 

Thanks, Dreogo. And platooning is the single best way to improve the enjoyment of this game. Finding a good toonmate or two that you really jive with makes it all the more fun.  


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thunderthies #10 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:09 AM

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View Postfullestnuke, on 18 May 2015 - 07:06 PM, said:

 

Out of upvotes, but ya, that was awesome. 


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thunderthies #11 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:10 AM

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View PostKsftwe, on 18 May 2015 - 07:07 PM, said:

Nice guide, I think you've covered everything that needs to be said. And you bring up a good point; contrary to popular belief, platooning does not just hand you easy wins. I see too many sloppy platoons everywhere whose members are simply wandering off on their own, ignoring their surroundings, trying to lead a two-man-army and dying instantaneously, etc. You don't need TeamSpeak to have a great partnership either; 99% of my toons are with players who I've never TS'd with, yet still have gone on 10, 15, 20-game winstreaks with.

 

Thanks, dude. And for sure, platooning isn't an insta-win, especially, as you mentioned, if the platoon is operating individualistically. It helps bring home the win of course, but not all that much. 


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EthereaI #12 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:12 AM

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Plus one. Being new to platooning myself, two mates at any WR are only as good as they work together. Solid work Thunder 

 

 


 

 


Psychopathy #13 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:14 AM

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Very good info +1



thunderthies #14 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:14 AM

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View PostParrottCanada, on 18 May 2015 - 07:12 PM, said:

Plus one. Being new to platooning myself, to mates at any WR are only as good as they work together. Solid work Thunder 

 

Hey thanks, man. And I agree. It's all about that synergy!


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thunderthies #15 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:14 AM

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View PostPsychopathy, on 18 May 2015 - 07:14 PM, said:

Very good info +1

 

Thanks, Psychopathy!


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ObjX #16 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:20 AM

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Good stuff bro for those that can not be within distance of each other team speak works pretty great. Having a tank maxed with equipment and 100% crew also helps lol :D. But ya dude great guide.

 

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SonnetVolta #17 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:29 AM

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Thanks thunderthies!

 

I've just started platooning, and I find it's hard to find synergy in play styles or even in communication styles. For example, I've tried platoon invites with people who have played well in a game with me (red or green) but I like to do chat ahead of time and some don't. Or today I was platooning my Churchill VII with a Cromwell, and we didn't communicate a plan such as "You scout, I'll shoot" so instead the Cromwell just stayed near me at 18kpg and was basically a slow, delicate tank with a mild gun.

 

I think it's worth chatting ahead of time, and if the platoon mate doesn't have time for planning, maybe not the right platoon mate for me.


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thunderthies #18 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:29 AM

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View PostObjX, on 18 May 2015 - 07:20 PM, said:

Good stuff bro for those that can not be within distance of each other team speak works pretty great. Having a tank maxed with equipment and 100% crew also helps lol :D. But ya dude great guide.

 

Thanks, ObjX. TS can definitely help compensate when platoonmates are neither in close physical proximity or do not have line of sight, but in my experience I have found that being either nearby or at the very least able to quickly swoop in to lend a hand is what makes or breaks the deal. 

 

I think the exception to this would be on a map like Copperfield. Like if you are in an E 50 M and your platoonmate is an E 100. Obvoiusly, you should flank and your platoonmate should stay on the main push. If, however, you find none of the Reds have flanked, I think you should quickly finish the flank and come in directly behind the enemy. This will mean you cannot directly help your platoonmate, but either one of two things will happen:

 

1. Many of the Reds will turn around to focus on you, giving your platoonmate easy shots and taking some of the heat off of them.

2. The Reds will not turn around, giving you easy shots and the ability to quickly take out the biggest threats.

 

Either way, thanks again!


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hughjass07 #19 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:30 AM

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Really nice guide, sir!

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thunderthies #20 Posted 19 May 2015 - 03:31 AM

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View PostSonnetVolta, on 18 May 2015 - 07:29 PM, said:

Thanks thunderthies!

 

I've just started platooning, and I find it's hard to find synergy in play styles or even in communication styles. For example, I've tried platoon invites with people who have played well in a game with me (red or green) but I like to do chat ahead of time and some don't. Or today I was platooning my Churchill VII with a Cromwell, and we didn't communicate a plan such as "You scout, I'll shoot" so instead the Cromwell just stayed near me at 18kpg and was basically a slow, delicate tank with a mild gun.

 

I think it's worth chatting ahead of time, and if the platoon mate doesn't have time for planning, maybe not the right platoon mate for me.

 

No problem, SonnetVolta!

 

Glad to hear you've started platooning. If you haven't yet found someone you mesh well with, give it time. Of all the people I have ever platooned with, there are only a very small handful where we achieve synergy. It really is difficult to do, but once you get it right it's friggin' sweet.


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