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Mwo Maps – Tactical View

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#81 627

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Posted 28 January 2015 - 03:38 AM

Frozen City (Night)

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Do you like energy builds? Stacking PPCs? Wub-Wub-Wub?

Welcome to Frozen City! This is by far our coldest map, overheating here will not only give you a severe punch in your face, you get also free LOLs from the rest of the players.
This map is most forgiving with heat, so expect hefty fights with no retreats to cool down. In fact, I see more mechs overheating here than on normal heat maps because people tend to forget about their heat.

Beside low heat, you have low vision – the daytime variant is foggier than forest Colony, the whole match is in a big blizzard. Daytime is time for Heat Vision, seriously. In the night, everything calms down, there’s nearly no fog at all and you can see a beautiful sky. No fog means more sniping of course, but don’t worry, this map has enough cover and is so small that you’ll end up in tight fights, maybe with a guessed maximum of 300m-400m.

Hotspots:

Drop Ship
In the middle of the map, at the border of (C3/C4) is a crashed drop ship on a ridge. This was a mech transporter, you even can find old mechs inside. Hiding in the ship is a bad idea, as is going straight through the breach.
Nearly every game consists of the south team getting to the ship and starting poptarting where as the north team tries to hide at the houses (B3/B4) and snipes back.
A bit west from the ship is a path over the mountain, behind a single house, but you’ll still get your mech handed to you if you try a glorious (=dumb) push with guns blazing.

Tunnel
This is a tricky one. Before the seismic module and 12vs12 you could literally sneak an army to the other side of the mountain.
This normally meant victory by cap or by kills if you were unseen. Today, even after the big seismic nerf it is still dangerous here. Fighting in the tunnel can be fun but suffers the same problem as all the other tunnels, see Forest Colony for this.

Eastern city
With this I mean the Buildings at (C4). These are large which means no LRM threat. Streets are narrow, though and movement can be tricky here.
On top of that, whoever comes here first has the advantage, be it high ground or better field of view.

Routes:

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Tunnel (blue)
The fastest route and the most interesting one. You should always get some mechs in there, at least some scouts. If you don’t, you will have something like 6 Assaults or more in your back (if you are the scout, chances are you find them too in there, at least to my experience).
There is one extra exit in the middle of the tunnel, greatly favoring the south team.

Poptart route (green)
Going for the ship means hiding and long range shooting. I have to say I don’t like it and try to break out of it as much as I can but sometimes it just needs to be done.
South team has again an advantage, more so if they manage to pull the north team to the bottom side of the ship. You really need a flanking move here or this will be a big slugfest, wearing off both sides.

Going East (red)
This is the alternative for everyone who sucks at jumpsniping or is mainly short ranged. Stay low from both sides and be fast and stay tight.
If the enemy has 4 mechs in the city and you get there one after another the match is over. It is really important to keep a little mech blob here, maybe 2-4 mechs who all can shoot at the same target (which means they stand beside each other, not behind).
If it is getting too hot, you can always jump down the cliff on the east but be aware without jumpjets you just bought yourself a long walk at the beach till you’re back in action.

Flanking routes:
Beside “tunneling” the enemy you can take the long run where Theta in conquest is. In assault mode you’ll likely be unseen until the enemy gets the “base under attack” warning. Best thing here is, there are some ramps that will get you in the back of the enemy, from both sides.
Worst thing is the low ground, even with jumpjets it’s nearly impossible to get up without a ramp.


Detailed Viewpoints:

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Picture is taken from the tower in the eastern city. Behind the marked building top right is the northwestern, upper base, far on the left is the southern, lower base.
Those purple fields are the main fighting and dying areas. Whoever pushes first here will likely lose the first mech.
Pushing from south, you want to get to the western city asap, maybe partly through the tunnel. Sometimes you can see mechs passing behind the dropship.
Only do this if you can get to the eastern city, running over those purple plains is not a very bright idea, not even in late game.


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This was on the top right corner of the map, you can see all bases/cap points with Theta directly in front of you. I just want to show that big cliff where all those big mechs (purple markings) will stand, shooting every little mech trying to cap (or circle battling).
This is a dangerous place, no reason to stay here for long. Note that there’s no direct way up from Theta.


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This is inside the tunnel, coming from north. The tunnel is bright and clear but still narrow. Fighting with more than 2 mechs here will lead to friendly fire or fire blocking at least.


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Night and Day by comparison. Down in the streets it’s getting worse with the fog and I’m not quite sure but afaik there is a dynamic weather element just like the rain on Caustic Valley. (nonetheless you only get “bad storm” and “even worse storm”).

Conquest additions:
At the start of the match, check your light mechs. If there’re some, get them to Theta asap. No stop at kappa/epsilon, no detour, get straight to Theta. But don’t go alone.

3 possible Outcomes:
First: No one there. Good.

Cap and run for the other base.


Second: one light enemy mech. Good.

You need to finish him off fast, though. After that proceed to enemy base.


Third: More than one enemy mech. Not good.

Doesn’t matter if lights or fast mediums, this will end in a circle fight with 4-6 mechs.
This will likely drag more (heavy) mechs down the ridge, mechs that should stay up there. Even if you can finally kill all those mechs down there, chances are, the rest of your team is dead or severely damaged.
In this case, I’d suggest a retreat to the next way back to your city cap point (Kappa/Epsilon) or wherever your main force is. Maybe you can even bait the enemy to follow you.

On this map, it’s really easy to get lost, either in cap points or in standing mechs. You can fight off those 2 Lights for 5 minutes, only to see that everyone else is dead and that this will end 2-12.
Or on the other way you fight well but forget about the cap points and get outcapped. The map is small, but capping takes forever, a 100 points advantage is nearly a win.
That’s why a fast theta cap is so important.



Frozen City (Night) [Post December 2013 Update]

No change. Skirmish puts both teams even closer with a slight “advantage” for the south team to be faster at the dropship or the eastern city.

Edited by 627, 28 January 2015 - 03:41 AM.


#82 627

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Posted 28 January 2015 - 03:45 AM

HPG Manifold

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"Is there anyone else with sound problems on this map?"

Welcome to Space!

Besides being the map with the lowest color count (it’s 1, but only if you count gray as color) this one really has an outstanding new feature or better lack of. This map has no atmosphere and is physically correct with it (as far as the engine and gameplay can be).

You will hear those “sounds” which physically interact with your mech – Basically all shots you trigger and all hits you take. And all sounds are toned down and muffled.
This is not only a new hearing experience, it’s affecting gameplay in a big way because you nearly have no feedback from your surroundings (like you buddy right next to you get shot to space scrap).

More than on every other map you have to check your minimap and your team/lance status or you’ll get your back opened in no time.
I had plenty of matches where I literally could sneak up on some enemies and killed them before they even know what hit them. Lasers work well for this because they have no impact shake.

Hotspots:

Satellite dish (D5)
The central point on the map. Just like the volcano on Terra Therma or the Caldera on Caustic Valley this place attracts the players for no good reason. Even on Conquest there’s nothing to gain here.

On the other hand, if you can hold this place you have a big tactical advantage: top cover, side cover and you can see the whole (inner) map from here. Of course you can get flanked form every side so this is high risk/high reward.

Cave
Lacking a better word I’ll just call the lower level the cave. There are four entrances to this place and some wide walls down there.
Its narrow and tight down there and LRMs won’t work here. Even if you can keep a 180m distance, the ceiling is to close for the LRM arc.

In conquest mode you have the Theta point here so expect fighting when you enter.
In every mode, these are flanking routes which enable you to pass half the map in no time.

Entry points
There are four big entrances into the inner map with the south one at (F5) being a bit special. Here you can find a big wall just in front of it. There’s often a sniper here shooting at the opposite Entrance at (E6). Don’t bother to waste LRMs on mechs here, there’s too much cover left and right of that place.

Routes:
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This is really an arena style map which takes all ways to the center, more than on every other map. There aren’t much flanking routes here.

Main:
The Long Way (Red)
This is the northern way and the “long” refers only to the far off starting locations. If you take this one, you won’t be the first in the inner arena and likely be shot the second you enter the ring.
On the other side, if you came with heavy mechs, it is possible there’s already a (lighter) fight for the satellite dish where you can get a good angle for.

But always keep in mind, there’s a lance on the other side with the same start. From south west, it’s an even longer walk. This is by far the worst starting location on the map.
If you’re on conquest, don’t forget to take the northern cap points, I saw many mechs overlook them on their way in.

The Short Way (Green)
The southern route gets you in the ring really fast. The southwest team have a rather big advantage here, a great wall in front of the entrance, giving cover to all sides and a narrow exit. From here you can shoot the other lance o the route and quickly disengage if things get ugly.

You will be the first in the ring from here so you have to take the lead where you will rally up and take the fighting to. Most lances go north, avoiding a lance fight with the counterpart on the other side and regrouping with the northern lance, when it finally arrives.
This is not a bad idea and I can only recommend it. Of course, if you are fast and half way coordinated you can rush the other lance and take out 1 or 2 mechs before backup has arrived. This is high risk of course.

The not so direct Direct Way (Blue)
As there’s nearly no mech that can jump over those walls, the last lance has to decide where to enter the inner ring. This should depend of weight/speed – Fast mechs should take the long run, slow ones the short. Of course, staying together should be first priority so choose where you can group up best.

Once in the arena, you can try to take the top and defend it or use the “cave” – in conquest, you have to take it of course, theta is down here. I really like fighting here for the atmosphere it creates but it is an unforgiving brawl so be prepared for that.
On the plus side, there won’t be any LRMs and PPCs aren’t a big threat if you can stay in 90m to the target down here.

If you are either a LRM or sniper build, stay out. The place to go for you is on top. With jumpjets, you can get up to the dish, a great spot for both sniper and LRM boats but you’ll be very exposed, of course. But with the lack of sound and with that low battle awareness, I took some nice backshots from here before I had to leave.

Flanking:
Not so much here as every deciding Fight will be in the inner arena. Even if you’ll find a fight in the outer areas, chances are the match is already decided.

From every “corner” on the maps, there’s a way up the big walls. It is nearly impossible to walk on these walls without any jumpjets so don’t try to get you stalker up here. But for mobile mechs these are uncommon places with a bit of cover here and there.

You can also get here mostly unseen from one side to the other to cap the enemy out or get in there back. On some spots you need to get through out of bounce areas, so be fast or your flanking moves results in one less mech to kill for your enemy.

I marked the cave ways too as in non conquest, this place is rarely used and you can get through here mostly unseen. Look up before you exit as you can get shot there pretty good from above.

Detailed Viewpoints:

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Let’s begin with a view from (F4/F5). Right in front you can see that huge wall, blocking everything from the middle and let you focus on the view to your “counter lance” on the other side along the green marking.
On this side of the map you’ll notice much less cover than on the northern one. Especially the yellow marked areas will get you into trouble from everywhere. Another reason to get into this map from the other side.

Another thing is the big wall, as you can see there’s some cover all around but overall you’re still hitable.


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The satellite hill. A good place to defend with the disadvantage of defending a 360° angle. With the shortcut of the cave down there, you should expect attacks from everywhere here. You can find cover right below the dish but always turn around – you don’t hear them coming here.

A little note to those yellow areas, you can jump up here but as you see, not much of cover or ways to retreat. I tried to get higher, but even with my spider guide I couldn’t get up more, it seems there are some invisible walls on it.


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The cave. In every corner is some sort of column with another color but I never bothered which is where, the cave is small enough to don’t get lost. There’s cover and it is fairly wide but this is still brawling area with the obligatory jenner running in circles and poking you in the back.


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This shot is from north-east and shows the whole inner map. Some things to see here, mostly that you have way more cover in the northern side, marked yellow. Another thing is directly below the dish, there are some wide pillars to hide.

Although you can see the first entrance to the cave. Exiting here is dangerous, you’ll need to be more aware what’s above you here.

Conquest notes:
If you can hold your side, this map is decided by the theta cap point in the cave. Getting the other point needs time, plenty of it for non jumpjet mechs. Always have an eye on the caps, if 2 spiders or locusts slip through your lines unseen the game is lost.
Either you won’t make it back in time to recap or you’ll be outnumbered by the time you do.


Edited by 627, 28 January 2015 - 03:45 AM.


#83 627

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Posted 28 January 2015 - 03:48 AM

River City (Night)

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This is another small map and one of the few with an alternate variant. The Night version is very dark and here you can really benefit from night vision – actually, it’s the only map where I use it regulary (and see it on other players).
This was the first map with an urban setting and gameplay differs quite a lot from all those wide area maps.


Hotspots:

Alcatraz
This is the big building in the middle of the river at (D3) - I don’t know why it’s called that way but that seems to be the common name for it. However, it’s a key location on the map, the southern team will almost always hide here at the beginning; from here you can react to base cap and push everywhere but you’re guarded by that big building. Keep in mind there’s a path on top of it with two big ramps leading east.

Broken bridge
In the top left you’ll find a bridge, leading to the upper city. It’s hard to fight uphill, anyhow there’s often some action, mostly favoring the north team.

Routes:

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Upper City/Uptown (red)
In the top left of the map lies Upper City on a plateau, sometimes also referred to as Uptown. Taking this route from the space port base (north) gives you an advantage *if* the other team took this route, too. Fighting from high ground is always better and there’re lots of buildings to hide. From the harbor, this only works if you let the enemy come to you or if you can outnumber them on the plateau.

Lower City/Downtown (blue)
The other side of the map, favoring the south team a bit. These are tight street fights but you’ll get LRMs on your head from the space port as most of the buildings are too small for full cover. Still the “better” route as you have more space to maneuver and you can use Alcatraz for cover.

The River (green)
What to say? Death trap, plain and simple.
But on a second thought, not so simple.
Actually because everyone thinks it’s a suicide run, it’s often unguarded. I would not recommend this from south, though as you can shoot all the way along the river from the space port base. And you should always expect a sniper up there.
From north it’s another story, you can sneak straight through it, but you need some luck.

Flanking routes:
Not much here beside the long run on the right.
You can run behind the City walls on the hills, and you can climb the hill right from the space port without jumpjets, but watch your step as there’s an open tunnel where you can fall down.
As mentioned in the Hotspots, you can quickly pass Alcatraz with that little path, even faster with jumpjets.

Detailed Viewpoints:

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This is the view from the south base, at the harbor. That big purple field is the field of view from the north base. You can actually shoot directly from the north base to the south base so if you start at the harbor, move asap. This is also the reason why a water run from south is not the best idea, you will feed fish before you pass that bridge.
By the way, Theta is in the middle of this mess so don’t think on capping this as long as you can go for epsilon or kappa.
Note the flank on the top right, there’s your covered way to the north base.


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This is nearly the whole map from uptown, bottom left is Kappa in conquest. There’s an open space here (where my little tour guide blocks the view and right from it), you should avoid it, too much angles from between the buildings will shoot you here. The only times I’ve seen a successful push from the harbor here is when you can reach the buildings fast and with heavy weight or you get killed.
Next to uptown is a little “park” with some hills, it’s enough cover to fight a little 1on1 undisturbed, but this map is just to small to rely on it.
You can also see this big bridge to Alcatraz - don’t use it. Better walk 100m more than get shot down.


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Because of the smallness and the layout you’ll fight more often in the bases. The space port here is a bit tricky, you can shoot mech feet below the ship and you can get stuck on lots of walls…
(have these purple things a real name? Blast Walls or something like that?)

However these walls block shots, even if you think they wouldn’t, weird hitboxes.
Special note for those cyan holes. There’s a street down there, a good escape route but still a hole in the ground so watch out.
If you sneak to the base from the east flank, expect a sniper or LRM-Boat at the red spots. And, of course, one disconnected mech at the pink spot. Be aware, people tend to just stand there sometimes and waiting for prey so check tabscreen if you’re unsure before you approach.


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These are downtown buildings where I want to show some cover.
  • Green = good, no LRM will hit you
  • Yellow = still ok but get close to the building
  • Red = Better run! This won’t protect you very well
  • Purple = Dead End! Again! Turn around or jump out, these are mean traps.
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Here are the different vision modes in the Day map…


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…and in the Night map. Do you see that commando? It’s really dark, the only lights are some flames and positioning lights on the bridges. There are not even street lights. You better get used to that night vision ;)

Cap-Race Map?
Some thoughts about the duality of the map. If both teams take “the left” or “the right” way, you won’t meet but race for a cap.
Uptown is shorter so if you start north and haven’t seen any enemy from there, you better start running or turning around asap.
Same goes for downtown if you start at the harbor and have passed Alcatraz. If you land at (D4/C4) without contact, chances are you have lost already. Putting a scout on top of Alcatraz can help here.


River City (Night) [Post December 2013 Update]

This time the change is in Assault mode while conquest keeps its layout.
Arguably this was the biggest gamechanger of all maps despite being one of the smallest so here it is.

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Even more fights now take place in the water and city at (D3/D4) where the now eastern team has a big advantage from those buildings and the ramp to Alcatraz. From the west, this is not a good option if you have no good sniper builds hiding on your side of the river.

I have seen more and more times that the whole park area at (C3/B3) becomes a death trap from LRMs – could just be coincidence but my guess would be both teams are closer to each other so you get in LRM range even faster.

On the other hand, there are less fights in the river, what I saw is that this map really developed into an urban fighting area in the city parts.

A note to Skirmish, you start at north and south but spread out on the 2-, 3- and 4-line. Especially the south team should choose only one side where they want to go or Alcatraz will be a big obstacle for you.

Edited by 627, 28 January 2015 - 03:50 AM.


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Posted 28 January 2015 - 03:53 AM

Terra Therma


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Welcome to Mordor.
It is hot, it is dark and it has only two colors.
This is by far the most… let’s call it controversial map in the pool. There’s nearly no match where no-one rants about it in the pregame chat.

Beside all that, it’s a fairly large map, second biggest map after Alpine Peaks. Like Caustic Valley there’re special areas where it’s hotter, so hot that your mech can take damage and your heat goes up to 90%.

Conveniently these areas are marked with a glowing orange texture, so don’t step on lava.
I’d had to admit I’m not a fan of this map, too and I’m bad because everything looks the same and I lose my orientation faster than elsewhere. Hell, still have to check the map to know which base I start.
However, I’ll try to make up some routes with sense.

Hotspots:

Mount Doom
The big volcano in the middle holds a platform with some heavy duty stuff and the Theta cap point. Fighting up here in Assault mode is completely pointless, still it seems everyone wants to drop a ring or something up there.

Yeah.. uhm… that’s it, really. There are some bridges over lava rivers but In the end the only other hotspots are the Caps and main bases, the rest of the fighting comes down to smaller fights if you find anyone.

Routes:

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For lack of memorable landmarks I’ll take the conquest Points for routing.

Epsilon route (red) & Kappa route (blue)
Description of these routes are nearly the same, you have to cross some bridges and pass some of these little volcano mountains. Doesn’t really matter if you go left or right around these rocks.
What matters is your position relative to the center and the distance.
The more you get near the center, the higher you are and it is more likely to encounter an enemy who is trying to flank the center.
If you are at the middle of one of these routes and there’s still no contact, you missed each other. Check if someone is in the volcano – still no mechs in sight? Yay for a cap race :P

Central route (green)
The inevitable main route up to the volcano straight up there to everyone’s doomed destiny. Not much tactics here, just a note: Do it or don’t, nothing between that. If you want to push in there, don’t stop at the entrance because you see two enemy mechs shooting at you. If you stop, you’re dead.

Behind you are all the other hobbits who want to get in so you can’t get back, you’ll get stuck. The time you need to turn around or just step aside is enough to kill you. And if you don’t walk deeper into that pit, no one of your buddies can shoot anything beside you. Even if they think they could shoot over your head, they can’t and will only hit you (they will try, though).

You need to know what is happening if you go up there: every side will run in and spread on the ring, shooting every single mech on the other side. The team with the best focus fire wins this bloody fight. There is no escape, you can’t go back, you can’t go down so shoot, shoot, shoot.

Flanking routes:
There are two side entrances to the ring of fate with serpentine ramps. Fighting here is fun because of vertical differences. These are more of escape routes than flanking ones because you can’t really get a better angle to the enemy.

Of course you can always do a long run cap attempt with a fast light at the beginning, but chances are half of one team is dead by the time you arrive on the other base.

Detailed Viewpoints:

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Lol, took more time to get a good shot from the volcano than writing this :D
As you can see, not much cover on the ring, some crates and boxes that will hinder your path but nothing will cover you in there. You can always drop down and there’s a broken ramp back or some ways out, but that’s not the best idea.
That area is huge, lava is damn hot and those who shot you want that kill and will likely follow you. For capping theta, do it fast and get out. You can’t protect your mechs there, but you can shoot anyone trying to recap it.


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The bridge entrance. See that cyan mech? Don’t stand there, just move in and take the beating, it’s the only way to win (win means not necessarily your survival, though). Splitting up and attacking from 2-3 sides is a good Idea ;)


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The only memorable place for me is at the southern flanking ramps. Fighting uphill is hard but you have a better field of fire, fro the top you have to come down one after another.


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This is my default thought on this map… you really have to be aware where you are. Sure, if you go up to the hot tub, that’s not really difficult but if you try to flank anyone you can easily end up wandering around in a dead part of the map. Meanwhile half your teammates get grilled on the other side. So always be aware where you are, your teammates are and of course where your targets are.


I hate this map” – random player on Terra Therma



Terra Therma [Post December 2013 Update]

No change for Assault and Conquest, in Skirmish you’ll start (spread out) north-west and south-east. With the layout of the map, that’s not really different from Assault, though.

More than on every other map you have to find at least another lance or you’ll get lost out there. Besides that, not much to say about this map anymore…

Edited by 627, 28 January 2015 - 03:53 AM.


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Posted 28 January 2015 - 03:56 AM

Tourmaline Desert

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Safari times! This map is fairly large (actually 3rd biggest one) and it is the overall hottest map (without those special areas on Caustic or Terra).
Many many crystal rocks, big ridges and wide open areas make this map feel larger and more open than all others except Alpine. Balance between both bases is pretty even with a slight advantage for the northern team, because they hold more high ground.
The south team normally has the initiative on this map, choosing where to fight. North team has more or less a “react to”-role, because of better position.

Hotspots:

Crashed Dropship
In the center of the map at (E5/F5) near Theta is a crashed Mammoth Dropship or what’s left from it. This is the common fighting point where both teams meet everytime.

East Valley
With this I refer to the area between (E6/E7). This is the alternate fighting spot if the north team refuses to push. Fighting will end here often then.

North Crater
Opposite to the East Valley, fighting will get here if the south team mechs (are allowed to) push over the northern route. It’s more or less open without cover, but being in the crater puts you in a disadvantage because of low ground and everyone shooting you.

Routes:

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Northern route (red)
This is the default route for light mechs in Conquest to get fast to Kappa. In Assault, this is only used by the south team to hide behind the crater ridge at (E4).
To get there, you have to pass a wide open area and when you are there with your heavy mechs, so are the enemy ones at “their” ridge in the top right corner of (E5).
Behind cover, sniping you. So from south this works only if you are fast and have long range. Remember that you can be pinned down there with ease, taking you out of the match for a minute or two.

Get to the Dropship! (green)
The main route. And just like Mount Doom, everybody comes here if no one makes a plan.
This is trench warfare, everybody hides behind his ridge and tries to get some potshots off.

Eventually one or two mechs got enough beating to finally decide “Push” and run into their death. You can’t break out here, you have to either retreat or flank, but flanking is difficult if everybody is looking at you.

Southern route (blue)
This route is longer than you may think and it is the least used one.
You can run this way mostly unseen, in the eastern part there’re many ridges and crystal rocks to hide. Look out for small path up these rocks, there are some sniper hideouts here and there.

A note for south team who try to cap: don’t take the blue line till the end without jumpjets, take the flank right from it or you will waste some time climbing that hill.

Flanking routes:
You can flank even farther south east beyond the blue route, near point Epsilon. Doing this will grant you an undisturbed run to the other base but it’ll take time.

On the other side this won’t work on the northern flank beyond kappa (from northeast base). You have to pass the bottleneck at (F4). It is possible to sneak through here but maybe 6/10 cases that big atlas will turn around and see you.
Be aware of all those little shortcuts through those rocks in the middle, there’re some great pathways for hit and run tactics.

Detailed Viewpoints:

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A view from the south base with the typical approach (green). All those purple fields are wide open. If you run around here with atlas speed or maybe a minute after the start, you will be shot from the other side. That’s why going on the red route and hiding behind the crater wall is a bad idea. You can’t escape from there without heavy LRM and PPC/Gauss shots hitting you. On the top left is Kappa, if you make it there you have a good spot for a light fight with enough cover and time to battle it out but don’t take too long or cavalry will get you. Oh and there’s a second crashed ship ;)


Posted Image

A shot from the other side. Plenty of cover and shortcuts to quickly react to a flanking maneuver. It’s hard to break this up without big losses and it’s important to keep situational awareness where the enemy is and will be in10-30 seconds.
That purple field around theta is a death zone, like a buffer between those frontlines. You can’t just look over your ridge, shoot and retreat. You have to go through that field, to “their” ridge and do your thing. This leads you away from your team and as always a single mech is prey.


Posted Image

This is an example of a random place from this map. You have those deep valleys (red) and those spiked edges (cyan) with shooting holes in it, big enough to fit your mech. This leads to static camper gameplay.
You have to expect snipers everywhere, mostly stalkers with PPCs (yes, even today after the PPC nerf I see a lot). Once you’re down there, there’s no escape from these high walls. Always try to keep high ground, it’s very useful on this map.


Tourmaline Desert [Post December 2013 Update]

No big changes here, too. Spawn points for Assault and Conquest where pushed a bit into the middle so fighting starts sooner but that’s it, basic tactics stay the same.

In skirmish you’re equally spread on the north and south but that won’t change much in regards to assault mode.

Edited by 627, 28 January 2015 - 03:57 AM.


#86 627

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Posted 28 January 2015 - 04:07 AM

Ok, finally!

I just rearranged the first post a bit, every map is now in its own post and directly linked in the first one.
Last time I added a map the forum went nuts with that long post and I was lucky not to loose the whole thing. So now before the forum is fupdup again I split it up.

Oh and the first new map since a year, the mining collective is now online :)

#87 627

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Posted 07 April 2015 - 02:34 AM

Viridian Bog
Posted Image

Ok, here we have the latest non-CW map, Viridian Bog!

Or how most people call it:
Posted Image


This map has two prominent features: the color green and the mist. Actually the mist was even more dense but was turned down because… reasons. Ok, it was quite a pea soup but not as heavy as the frozen city blizzard.
The Bog is a medium sized map but on the larger end of that scale, comparable to Crimson. Sadly, in most of the matches only half the map is used. At least we have a more or less open map design and not the arena style we find in most maps.

Hotspots:

The Two Towers (C3/C4/D4)

In the middle of the map you can find a very large plateau at (C4/D4) around a little mountain. (Do these rock formations have a better name? How do you call something like that?)

This is the central point of fighting every match will have some guys climbing up there sniping treetops and eventually getting LRM’d. The team on the right have the advantage here because the stairs are on their side.
Jumping up from other sides is possible. If you are in a spider with 12 Jumpjets.

At the current state of jumpjets, no mech which carries real guns can get up there from the left side.

Just north of the central plateau is his little brother at (C3/C4) – it has the same height and the same stairs alignment to the right.
There is a smaller plateau to the left so you *could* double jump up there with say a maxed griffin but it is hard to do and has only minor benefits.
If you are up there, you are exposed to Snipers and LRMs from both sides. It is a better position for long range, though.


The Choke (D4)
Directly south of the big plateau you can find a choke point that seems to be the goto place for many people. There are some remains of the local bugs here which can give shelter in the rain but if you can you should avoid fighting there. Chances are you get killed by your own team (or get a team kill here).
There is another choke point between both towers with similar layout.

Stairs
Main Stairs are marked yellow. It is very important to know where you find one if you fall down at the lower swamps in the south. Can be quite a walk to get back up.
Turrets(Orange spots)
Because of the wideness of the map, Turrets aren’t a big problem here if you have some long range weapons. On the left they are pretty tight but there’s enough cover to kill them one after another. On the right there’s one turret far away south of the base which can get you off guard but in the end it is just one turret.


Routes:

Posted Image


Main Route (green)
As always, the shortest way to get a fight and get killed. People tend to race for the center plateau, but in 95% the right team wins this and has mechs up there before the left team can get to the ramp. And even if you are there first from left, you will get shot.
The fight will either take place at the stairs and choke point or, if you can push out from left in the field around Epsilon. If you do this, bring a good brawler and be sure someone is following you.

The way of the Hunter (red)
I’m not sure why this happens but it does pretty often. Players from the right team tend to keep a hand on the right wall of the map to don’t get lost or so, ending at the northern plateau.
Mostly they stop there to play peekaboo but once in a while they push around. The left team does the same and if you stay quiet you can even hear the ancient sounds of benny hill playing.

To Dagobah (blue)
This is not really a route but a common mistake. Ending in the lower swamps is bad. Not only because you can’t see much or because you get shot from the cliff.

No it is because you can’t get back up in time. What I’ve seen often is a med/heavy jumping down to get that little bugger. But even if you kill the locust or whatever, it can take you some minutes to get to the next ramp. In this time your team has either killed the rest or is just dead.
This way is only good for fast lights who try to get the AFK kill at start. Mid match this is a good way to get into people’s back, but this is only viable if fighting has already started.

Flanking routes:
Not much shortcuts here, All you can do is shoot/jump of the plateaus or take one of the long runs to get behind someone. It is possible to peek out of the narrow alleys between the plateaus but be careful to not take the dead end.

Detailed Viewpoints:

Posted Image

A view from the right, you can see the two plateaus with the stairs (yellow). Left and right from the bigger one you can see both choke points. It is best to not stay here and keep moving.

If you see one or two assaults peeking out here, expect the rest of the enemy team cowering behind the wall, waiting for a brave player jumping down behind the assaults. Don’t be that player.
At the front you see the main brawl area, lot’s of stuff you can get stuck around here. Oh and don’t try to tunnel the tree roots with something bigger than a locust.


Posted Image

The lower swamps. The lilies don’t absorb incoming fire by the way.
Stay out of here if you can. Especially on the left side of the map the way back is long.
In conquest you have to go down there, but be quick. If you get into a brawl and can’t end it within a minute, expect some buddies of your enemy to jump on you.


Posted Image

This is the northern edge of the smaller plateau, way too many fights happen here. If you come from the left, stay close to the wall or you get shot from above. This isn’t a good position at all, because if one team finally starts to push, there isn’t enough space to maneuver so you’ll become a meatshield for your buddies and those can’t fire without shooting you first.


Final Thoughs
I like this map, even if it is a disguised arena map in the end. This map favors the right team but not so much that I’d call it imbalanced. It could be more open, too many narrow corridors and while I like the vertical aspect, it is nearly impossible to get up there without a ramp.
What I really like is the fact that it seems to force you into a brawl, there is enough cover to avoid LRMs and Snipers everywhere.

Edited by 627, 07 April 2015 - 02:54 AM.


#88 grendeldog

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Posted 27 April 2015 - 09:21 PM

I have to say this is a fantastic resource, and so thank you for taking the time and effort to put this together.

I wonder though whether there's any similar resource for CW? If so could someone direct me to that thread?

#89 LordDante

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Posted 27 August 2015 - 02:58 AM

great read !!!
thy mucho hombre !

#90 627

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Posted 03 September 2015 - 01:47 AM

River City redux!

Everything new and shiny on the redone map of River City. Now with more areas to shoot and dynamic time of day. And the very best new feature? We can finally kill those statues which always blocked our mighty mechs. Never again!
First of all, as this is not exactly a new map but a makeover, I recommend reading the old guide for this map first, as I’m likely refer to it here.

So let’s take a look what changed:
Posted Image

First thing of course is the new size, I think it’s 3 or 4 times the size of the old river city. If you look closely, we now have a wider river with obstacles in it, a new harbor area with kind of silos or tanks, a beach and some forest areas and finally a bigger air/spaceport.
So, the biggest question: how did the gameplay changed with it?
Sadly, not very much I have to say. The spawn points are further away now that at least prevents spawn killing. And we have some new ways in the outer map, but I haven’t used them in any match so far beside getting into the action.
But let’s start the usual way.

Hotspots:

The Citadel (formerly known as Alcatraz; funny how things change)
This is still the central point of the map where everything revolves around. Literally. I have seen maybe five matches on the redux version where this wasn’t the central fighting point. Seems it attracts the players even more because it’s something they know and everything else is new and frightening.

The inner Park
If you don’t fight at the citadel, chances are, you are here, under the bridge to the upper city. Not much to say about this area, you can get shot from all sides and it can be hard to break out into the city below or up. The broken bridge to upper city is repaired now, but it is quite a way to get up.

Routes:
Posted Image

These are mostly the same, in the end it’s the same map.


Lower route (blue)
At the lower edge, we now have the harbor area going wide behind the citadel, so you have some cover there. But you can’t sneak behind, you still have to cross some open areas and will likely be seen. I want to mention that the team on the left has a longer way to the citadel so expect resistance when you’re there.

Upper route (red)
This one is about taking and holding high ground, you either take the upper city or the airport and shoot into the river. On paper, this is a good position for both sides, but the reality is, often you’ll get here only to find that you or your lance is far away from the actual fight at the… yeah, exactly, the citadel. So before going this route, check for enemy movement.
The biggest problem is, if you can’t see someone, you *could*cross the bridge and flank the enemy from a good position. But going over the bridge will be noticed and going through the water will take more time (because you need to get up again). High risk/high reward, more or less.

Direct route (green)
Straight forward, rush into the river and shoot everything. It mostly goes like this: left team will poke from the buildings while the right team can now hide behind those big rocks in the water. I want to say, that is a bad idea. Even those rocks are nice and all (and ugly and odd from a map design view) you are a sitting duck with no way to retreat. Still, if everyone is into brawling, you can rush through the river into the park and from there into the side of the enemy.

Flanking routes (yellow)
The one that stands out is the little one on top near the airport. You can now go up there without climbing the steep hill to the bridge. This can save some seconds but be aware you land on the airstrip. There’s nearly no cover so be fast.
On the edges of the map are now beautiful roads where you can switch position vertically on the map. But those are long walks on the beach and even in fast mechs, you are out of combat for a minute or two. If the conquest points would be further away from the center, this would be a nice way to go, but as it is, these streets are mostly useless.

Detailed Viewpoints:
Posted Image

Now this new spectator tool would be handy… however thanks to a bug I was catapulted into the air and could make some shots from above.
This one shows the citadel (orange) and the new harbor area with the silos (green). The purple area is shows that you can shoot behind the silos where the left team tries to hide. And the right team can stay behind the buildings and just poke and get back.
Even worse, behind the silos are all kind of steps half the size of a mech. The only cover is behind those round silos but you’ll have a hard time getting there without jumpjets. This is a dangerous place if you can’t push into the city. Don’t stay here for peekaboo games.
I also marked the peepholes on the other side of the river, feel free to play whack-a mole here from the citadel.


Posted Image

The River with the rocks and the green inner park. Just for the sense of scale, there is a stalker between the rocks. The problem with this cover is, you can shield yourself against one side and you are open to left and right. You can either be shot from the citadel or the park, no matter how you position. Use this only to get to the other side, don’t stay in the river.
The park has similar problems but there you can at least get under the bridge. Coming here with more than 4 mechs at once will create another problem, you will block your shots when you cross into the city (blue rock formation). This is a dangerous crossing, make sure no one hides in the upper city or your back armor will be vanished. Not the best place to attack early to mid game. If it is down to 6-8 mechs, this can work well, though.



Posted Image

A shot from the upper city. You can see some of the new cooling towers. Infront of them is a enlarged urban area. Fighting here is fun but if you end up fighting here, you have either already won or lost, depending on which team you started. Fighting here is mopping up, you shouldn’t let the enemy get this far. Still a good place, LRMs are a non issue and narrow streets can help against superior numbers.
The upper City itself was widened a bit, too. Defending this high ground is always a good option as long as the enemy bites. Long range builds can shoot on everything from here, the citadel , the river even the harbor and airport areas.


The Nascar phenomenon
This map (and caustic valley of course) is one of the maps where this happens. A lot. Going nascar means both teams circle counter-clockwise around the citadel like a dog hunting its own tail.
The idea behind this is you can get the slow enemy assaults with your fast mechs and chew them up one at a time. But this idea is likewise the problem for your own assaults, you leave them behind.
If you have two teams with fast assaults (like zeus or gargoyle or so) you can do 2-3 laps without ever seeing an enemy.
To conquer this, I could write a whole new guide but in the end, try to not be the last of your team and don’t leave the last of your team alone.

Edited by 627, 25 January 2016 - 04:48 AM.


#91 627

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Posted 04 September 2015 - 02:22 AM

It's gettin' hot in here...

Hi everyone,
this time I want to take a look at the heat in our maps. Which map is the hottest, wich one the coldest? What is the worst place to fight?
Every map has a given temperature in the pre-match screen, but how accurate are those temps?
So I did some science!
For the test, I took my Jenner K. It is completely stock, which means I only have 10 single Heatsinks, 9 in engine and one in the head. It is mastered, though so I have the skill upgrades for it. No modules where used.
With this I made the following on every map and every different heat area:
  • Note the idle heat
  • Firing all 4 medium Lasers two times in a row and note where the heat gauge is
  • Firing 2 ML until I shut down and note how many times I could fire
  • Stop the time it takes form 60% heat to 30% heat (so how long for 30% heat to cool off)
I made plenty of screenshots but most look the same so I’ll only show some for example. The best data from all this is the time it takes to get rid of 30% heat. With this you can compare the hotness on every map.























2ML until shutdownHeat after 2x4MLidle Heat60%>30% in s
Alpine Peaks145508,3
Boreal Vault135208,1
Canyon Network961012
Caustic Valley870616,3
Caustic Valley (in the caldera)6841739,6
Crimson Strait961011,7
Crimson Strait Water1060011,2
Emerald Taiga962012
Forest Colony960011,9
Frozen City145408,2
Grim Portico144708,5
Hellebore Springs961011,9
HPG Manifold125409,2
River City962011,9
Sulfurous Rift870616,2
Terra Therma7761021,3
Terra Therma center (inner Ring in the center)7761021,1
Terra Therma center (inner Ring on the ledge)6801325,3
The Mining Collective961011,9
Tourmaline Desert870616,3
Viridian Bog962012
Vitric Forge870616,1


I have to note there are some tolerances with those values as I stopped it with a watch but I think you should see the pattern. Another thing is the heat gauge seems to go negative on cold maps. Shooting at 0% can give you 26-32% so there’s some margin for error here.

Here are some Pics how this looks:
Cold:
Posted Image

Normal:
Posted Image

Hot:
Posted Image

If you look at the data you’ll see we have seven different heat zones
  • cold maps (Boreal Vault, Frozen City, Alpine Peaks, Grim Portico)
  • cool maps (HPG Manifold)
  • Normal maps (All other maps, wont type them all here again)
  • Hot maps (Vitric Forge, Sulfurous Rift, Caustic Valley, Tourmaline Desert)
  • Welcome to Hell map (Terra Therma)
  • Portal to Hell (the inner Ring in Terra Therma)
  • Get toasted Area (The Caldera at Caustic Valley)
Actually we have 8 and that is the Lava on Terra Therma:



Posted Image

There is no idle heat if you stand there. In fact, your heat goes up rapidly, only capped at 90%. It takes 3.8 seconds from 30%to 60% and if you shutdown with the Jenner, it takes 5,1 seconds from 100%to 90%. Around 60% heat you start taking damage to the legs there.
So with no doubt the lava is the hottest place to be.
Still, the hottest place to fight for a longer time is the Caldera on Caustic Valley. It took nearly 40 seconds to get down to 30%, longer than anywhere.
Fighting on Terra Therma is hot, too but if you compare it, it doesn’t stand a chance.
However, there’s something strange up there in mount doom.
If you enter this inner ring on Therma, your idle heat rises a bit from 10 to 13%. That was expected as you fight above a lava lake.
What I didn’t expect was that the heat goes down if you enter the lower platform in the center. Although you are nearer to the lava, heat jumps back to the default level you have outside.
Here are some screens of this:

At the entrance:
Posted Image

notice how heat jumps up (I'm standing still so no walking heat)

Posted Image

going up the bridge from the center, it heat jumps again.

Posted Image

It is cooler below!

I doubt this is intended, likely a bug or oversight. But for now, if you really have to fight up there, you are better off pushing into the center. At least if you look at your heat.



Another thing I want to mention is water. Standing in the red water of Crimson strait, I noticed a better heat dissipation. I had no Heatsinks in the legs, maybe because the CT was half under water.
Posted Image

First I thought the water is like the caldera, an area with different heat settings but I couldn’t find a difference with my DHS grasshopper. So maybe it works just as expected, you have to submerge components with heatsinks


Conclusion

Actually I thought every map has a different heat setting but only two maps are unique, HPG and Terra Therma. All other are either hot, cold or normal, no matter what the temperature says on the pregame screen.

Edited by 627, 25 January 2016 - 04:52 AM.


#92 Ian G

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Posted 04 January 2016 - 05:32 PM

Fantastische work you habe eine. Especially sich the heat stuff! Please do the Forrest Colony Redux soon.

Oh, i call the hills on Viridian Bog Big round top and little round top.^^

#93 Ringmaster

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Posted 06 January 2016 - 05:59 AM

Excellent information, thanks for the posts guys this is awesome.

#94 627

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Posted 25 January 2016 - 06:30 AM

Forest Colony Redux

Here it is, the most anticipated renewal of the old maps. And what to say?
Not quite what everyone expected or hoped for.

I struggled with this one, indeed I put this off for a while, only to see how the gameplay changes and how people play this new design.
I have to say, I really like the new setting. I miss the snow (just for the looks) and I don’t like that once again, we get a huge map but only a small fraction is actually used. Which is sad.
As this is a “only” a redux the base map layout is mostly the same (I keep the old map guide online for reference).

Posted Image

Obviously bigger than before, we now have extended areas of water on three borders and some actual forest, even if it could be a bit more as fighting between those big trees isn’t really a thing these days.
If you look at the spawns and conquest points, those are still very near to each other and don’t really use all that new space with Gamma being the exception.


Posted Image

Forest Walk (blue)
The cave is gone but we now have a pass between the mountains. Coming from the left side, you first have to find a way to the map, some spawn points are really tricky and you end up walking 3 minutes just to get to your base. If you walk through the forest, you should end up around Theta.
Don’t expect the enemy (main) team from the right here, you are always faster if you don’t get lost. Cover is between the trees and hills so you can move unseen.
From right, you can get trapped in that narrow passage, a classic choke point so be fast or be somewhere else.

Direct route (green)
Pretty straightforward from both sides. You end up at the Arc at (H9). From left you have a bigger rock formation to pass around near the old mining village but in the end you are near the arc, too. I’ll get to this again.

The Water Run (red)
This route is now longer and more dangerous than before. While you can’t be seen so easy from everywhere, you still have to get out of the water somehow. On both ends of this way you now have bigger rocks where you can often find some long range mechs that will shoot you as long as you are in the open. More than ever this is a light/fast route.

Flanking north (yellow)
Not really a flanking route, to be true. Even in a 170kph locust it takes time to get from one end to the other. With the right spawn you can take a light lance around and shoot some backs but chances are that all enemies are already set up at the arc and have no problem shooting you when you finally arrive. I even had a match where we lost 6 mechs before our lights even showed up.

Detailed Viewpoints

The Arc
Posted Image

Or whatever you want to call that rock/bridge formation. This is the center of the map. Every. Single. Game. I have no Idea why, but you’ll end here.
This is not even a good position to fight over. But as you eventually will end here, let’s look at the options.
From the right side, you can go through the hole. Bad idea, as you just entered a choke point with no reason. Then you get shot. From the woods, from both sides and from the back (thx team). So this should only be done when you know the enemy is weak and behind the big rock needle and everyone will push and not hesitate.
Going around on the south side. Well, poking here will get you return fire from everywhere and you have to expose at least half your mech because of the slope. This is even worse than the choke point because the enemy has plenty of space and cover here.
Jumping over it – well, this is one of those all or nothing moments, but basically you waste your mech with it. Can work but in most cases you jump right into 3 other enemies and that’s it.
I marked some spots orange, where you often find enemies.

Let’s look at it from a different angle.
Posted Image

This looks a bit better but only on first sight. You have this big rock needle to hide, no LRM will get beyond that. On the northern side (left in the pic) you have all mountains, all you have to fear here is a push from the blue route, but that is rare. So what are the bad news?
Bad news are, in most games the enemy is full aware and just keep positions so someone will start to poke through the hole or get around on the south and die. It is the old Problem, if you need to push, you get focused down and people fear that. And in the end, you have to pass this Arc so you have the mirrored problems I described above.

So how to solve this?
Brute force. This is indeed one of the better options but this can be nasty and you need your team for that so don’t push and hope people will follow (they won’t). Communicate first.
Flanking. Difficult but doable. Either through the mountains or the water, while water is quicker but with a higher risk. Either way you have to be fast.


Posted Image

This is the updated Water area. More rocks and cover but also no beach anymore in the middle. So getting back to the center is a bit harder.
The orange spot is a good place to be, actually. You can see everything that’s on the water to the left and can shoot to the right into the arc area. Good starting point when things get rolling as you can react to all kind of upcoming situations.


Posted Image

Did you know the map has this? This is on the right side of the map and you won’t see this in any actual fighting. Except someone calls a beach party. I had this a few times so I want to share. In Assault or Skirmish, you rally your team at (H12) or anywhere at the beach, hidden from the enemy. And you wait. Everyone has to wait, that is the hardest part.
Eventually the enemy will start looking and if with a bit of luck they spread a bit. Some scout will find you the whole enemy team will get to you, raging that you wasted the match time. And if they drop in, one by one because no one waits for the fatties you can kill them with focus fire in no time.
Won’t work everytime but can be fun. A little warning, this could result in some reports because of non-participation, so you don’t have that from me…Posted Image

Edited by 627, 25 January 2016 - 06:31 AM.


#95 Sergeant Falcon

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Posted 28 January 2016 - 06:41 PM

Damn thats cool

#96 Boulangerie

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Posted 22 March 2016 - 10:12 AM

Are you currently working on Grim Plexus (new map)? I've only been able to play here and there since it came out and I can't get anyone to vote for it!! Granted, we can't exactly chat during the voting screen. Maybe I'll just keep voting for it and save my vote if it's not up there.

Thanks for the guides!

#97 627

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Posted 24 March 2016 - 02:07 AM

View PostBoulangerie, on 22 March 2016 - 10:12 AM, said:

Are you currently working on Grim Plexus (new map)? I've only been able to play here and there since it came out and I can't get anyone to vote for it!! Granted, we can't exactly chat during the voting screen. Maybe I'll just keep voting for it and save my vote if it's not up there.

Thanks for the guides!


Not yet, to be true. I haven't had the time to play much since the release, actually I only played something like 5 matches or so on it. And I want to make polar highlands first, because it seems there are quite a lot ways to play the map.

I normally try to play the map for a good while, see how I and how other people play it before I start a guide for it. Time is the problem these days. Work, life... and all my guys play division at the moment so I have not much spare time for MWO.

#98 G4LV4TR0N

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Posted 15 February 2017 - 12:54 AM

Could you add VIP Escort routes for each map? And how towers change those routes?

#99 Steel Raven

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Posted 15 February 2017 - 10:27 PM

Doubt the drunken Atlas follows any real predicable route. Why it both fun and frustrating, it doesn't allow for camping you must be ready to change your strategy at any given moment.

#100 G4LV4TR0N

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Posted 16 February 2017 - 01:17 AM

Actually on some maps I know certain routes pretty well, so no.





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