AirMech Advanced Tactics and Tips



AirMech Advanced Tactics and Tips by ambiva

A summary and tips from my playing experience, hope some would be helpful:

This is not a beginner’s guide
make sure that you’ve played and understood basic game mechanism before reading this guide

Strafing
• Same as your FPS shooting game, strafe on the ground (A & D) while shooting enemy tanks/bucky at a distance to avoid incoming file. Projectile shells travels slower than beams, it can miss.
• Bomber cannot avoid point-blank shoot, so keep circling to avoid incoming fire from other units
• Last shot just before you take off from tank, will probably miss you if you do it well. – (avoid taking off along the axis of tank fire )
• Dodging one bucky is easy due the the speed of the rocket, but dodging a lot of buckys require movement skills (WDSA/WASD…)
Strafe while shooting from enemy tank’s back is ideal, do not try to strafe and shooting big tank pushing forces from the side, you can die shortly

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Focus firing
Sounds simple, but extremely helpful if you can pull it off with your teammate. Your enemy will be quite upset if you make their life harder and your team appears to have more cohesion (each enemy respawn also buy you valuable time). Watch your minimap and help your teammate if you use fast Mech and don’t have a priority!

Good ues examples:
• At early game, 3 AirMech shooting 1 AirMech hovering on an outpost can kill it in seconds
• If an annoying Warthog is tearing your defensive units down, from air or ground, focus firing on him! Warthog is slow at escaping (shooting 1v1 won’t hurt him much if he’s close to his own outpost)
Focus firing on the baby-sitting-Osprey in the air is very effective!
• 2~3 Mech focus firing on a bomber accurately will make it no return
• Bring some HAAT for extra fire support.
• It’s good to fire at a certain distance, and good to hold still.

Run before you die!
• Avoid engaging more than 1 Mech at a time, you’ll die if they are skilled.
Run out of enemy range before your HP is critical
Practice your specific Mech to understand a safe HP threshold before running.
• Each time you got killed, respawn time will give enemy a great advantage. The higher in game level, the longer respawn time, avoid death in late game as much as you can!

Respawn time chart:
https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc … i=1#gid=11

Early game Mech kill
If you use fast Mech like Striker or Neo, when game starts (finish your unit placement/maneuver asap), fly to intercept one or two enemy Mech who’s capturing outposts (get familiar with all maps yourselves, and think which outpost they will capture first). There is a good chance that you can kill an enemy Mech (waste early respawn time is critical for enemy sometimes). It’s wise to bring another team mate with you for co-op interception.

Against tank push
Scouting is very important, predict when and from where will enemy push.
• If pushing force still far, shoot the last tank from back for double damage, strafe to avoid tank fire
• Stasis Mine is a must for denying big push with minimized loss, and sometimes a key to win you the game. Most time enemy won’t have time to sweep mines, especially those near defensive line.
• Lay 2-4 Stasis Mine (depends on the size of enemy force) in a zigzag pattern ALONG enemy’s incoming route. (Scout first so you are ready for it!) Then put right amount of Gemini/Longhorn in a concave formation behind it. You can kill all enemy units while losing none.
For map like Vale ,Thar and Sandrim, it’s wise to have at least one Stasis mine in your team.
See Crossing the T: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crossing_the_T

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Generally, 10 Gemini in concave formation with stasis mines can kill 20 incoming Gemini without any loss

• Use cluster bombs helps as well (nerfed), since enemy tank line will be slowed and cluster together, also it can kill enemy Mech shooting on ground (wait for their HP reaches low level)

Against Goliath
• If the game reaches an stalemate, and both you and enemy have similar amount of Goliath. Deploy stasis mines in front of your Goliath, put your Goliath in concave formation then all enemy Goliath push can be countered easily (each Goliath can handle 3 Goliaths in a line with support), and then push all your Goliath for counter-attack if necessary.
See Crossing the T: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crossing_the_T
• Watch for ninja Goliath drop, it hurts. And most of them can be intercepted if you keep an eye on minimap
• Use heavy/large number of artillery if enemy get surrounded and turtles.

Against Artillery
• Artillery is a great psychological warfare tool, be fearless if you saw them
• Keep re-positioning your units and heal the low HP ones (very important, at least 1 teammate should be responsible).
Spread out your units, especially avoid enemy’s axis of fire, to optimize damage control.
• If enemy artillery is unprotected, just land and shoot it, kill in seconds
• Drop tanks close by
• Cluster bomb
• Build more artillery as well to counter it (make sure your team has artillery unit if enemy has )
Don’t hesitate and Use T push to takeover enemy outpost surrounded by artillery, if you have sufficient amount of tanks.

Against bombing
• Spread your units apart, and also spread some Seekers in good spots. Otherwise bombers will have a good time.
• Spread a few HAAT around your units will be perfect, if you got enough money.
• Aegis can shoot down certain amount of bombs
Constantly pick up smoking units and heal them over outpost (and keep shooting). Cluster bombs cost money, healing do not.
• Focus firing on the bomber with your teammate (better if you have Seekers or HAAT below)
• If you see bomber bombing straying unit, just shoot the bomber

Against abduction
If you see a Saucer abducting units, shoot it!!!
• Do not leave straying units alone, have at least 2 seekers at important spot against abduction.
• You can’t do much about blinking, try to focus fire/intercept with your teammate.
• Don’t use T or Y command to send single or a few units to the enemy, they’ll be captured.

Against Ninja-base attack
• Watch your minimap, if any enemy mech flying towards your base, intercept it as fast as you can
• Radar guardian will help greatly
• Lunchbox will be enough to neutralize a single-tank-drop-damage.(smart player will let tank kill lunchbox first)
• Put seekers/T99 around your fortress at critical/sniping locations, as well covering your Moneymaker
• Deploy one or two T99/tanks right in front of fortress (zero-spacing) against frontal drop
• If enemy drop tank on the side, meat shield if you can, otherwise shoot the tank from back/bringing more defending units
• Drop cluster bombs on those attacking Mech to kill them with ease (require skills), bomber’s bomb will be less effective against random “dancing movement”
Do NOT let outposts close to your base being ninja captured, even if your team has almost full map control, which can serve as enemy’s ninja station (Late game with Goliath will be devastating).
• Return the flavor by ninjaing back

Against Ninja-capture
This one is important that it will be decisive for most high level games
• Very important, in most maps, skilled enemy will try to capture one out post that’s close to your base, don’t let them!
• During mid-game, if you think your team get major advantage, enemy team will also try sneaky ninja-capture and make you panic and distract you from main defence line.
In early game, watch minimap and patrol at critical route and intercept (whoever using Neo or Striker) any enemy coming for ninja
• If enemy succeeded in capturing one of your nearby-outpost, you are in a lot of trouble, if you kill enemy ninja Mech, then they lost precious time!
• Drop defenses on nearby outpost as soon as it’s secured.
• If you are bomber or striker(later), use melee attack to kill all soldiers
• Use Z to call your teammate and work together to get the outpost backcus firing on the ninja)
• One teammate can attack enemy base or ninja enemy’s outpost back for distraction.
• In emergency when you have 1 entrance covered by a soldier and enemy Mech is trying to killed it for their soldiers to go in, pick up a tank from other entrance and drop/block this entrance.
• After recapture, pick up and drop some available creeps on the entrances for temporary defense.
• In emergency, drop any nearby units/creep on the entrance to block enemy capture. (arty, moneymaker, etc… anything)
• If enemy Mech is shooting, don’t forget to pick up smoking tanks guarding the entrance and heal/drop back quickly before any enemy soldier get close.
• If you successfully ninja-capture enemy’s outpost after enemy captured yours, you can let one of your teammate make base defense and strike enemy base from your outpost (teamwork is important, and knowing what you should do by judging the situation swiftly)
• Radar guardian is highly recommended for detecting/support ninja action.

Cluster bombs
Unfortunately nerfed, no longer 1-shot moneymaker.
• Effective against SAM rush and get lots of XP
• Effective against Jackel push (with road blocked)
• Kill sh!t load of patchers, Jackel and buckys for XP if they mass together
• Kill low HP Mech on the ground instantly (require skilled dropping)
• Psychological warfare against enemy defensive field (eg. lots of units close together), considering outpost healing is nerfed. Not effective if enemy have Osprey.
• Practice for the inertia/speed of the bomb drop, its tricky for starters to drop at full speed and hit the target

Aegis
• Attacking T-99, put an Aegis behind you and you can shoot it without losing much HP (with strafing, 1 Aegis can neutralize 2 T-99 / 1 seeker’s missiles)
• Relieve for attack run, when friendly Mech are being chased by sht load of missiles
• Deny Chopper’s rockets, if enemy team has one or even two choppers, hell yeah!
• A group of protected Aegis in front of enemy defense position will make them sad. (you can land, strafe and shoot at ease)
• Not quite useful on big map since battle can happen everywhere until last moment.

HAAT
• HAAT has become quite popular among high level games
• Psychologically fear for enemy
• HAAT fire can not be evaded so no tricks, and it has high HP, harder to kill
• It’s an excellent AA unit to protect your artillery/unit field against bomber and warthog
• A combination of Bertha/HAAT/Ratchet with some tanks as pressure force can be deadly
• Another great use of HAAT is dogfight support, especially a deterrence for Striker/Neo/Saucer, since it can not be dodged.
• Spread a few HAAT out (4-6) and surround your artillery/tank force, enemy will have a very hard time to deal it.

Bear trap
• Has become less useful due to the bunker slot
• Also people tends to make a lots of them in early games and no time to recycle to free unit cap

SAM
[Nerfed, see dev’s note below]
• with about 20-30 SAM for map like Simple/Twinpeak, one team might has good chance to easily win.
• put SAM in bunker slot is cost-effective in early game. (not common anymore)
• SAM rush can be annihilated by cluster bombs easily
• SAM belongs to infantry and have to walk towards unoccupied post (a trick to make SAM rush turn back)

Turtle Tank
• 2 with Ratchet behind them (or Osprey repair) will make them very durable for blocking a bridge
• They can also be used for attracting artillery fire
• Link command on them will be inefficient since they move extremely slow
• Emergency use for anti tank push
• Helpful for taking neutrals

Radar Guardian
• Extremely useful now due to the Fog feature. A great unit for high speed Mech like Neo/Striker /Saucer
• Great for scouting and strategic planning in big maps (Vale, Thar)
• You view is shared for all your teammate
• They are cheap so don’t worry if they got destroyed, just make new ones
• Passive “scouting”, you don’t need to move to know from where the enemy push will be coming
• Best use: 4 Radar Guardian (nerfed a bit)= 2/3 map view for Thar/Vale
you know exactly where enemy Mechs are and what they are doing. Then Intercept, Ninja, Push defend preparation, Deception, you name it
• Also good for CTF games

Tank Management
Face your tank towards enemy (if your tank flashing red, rotate it asap)

• When attacking neutral or enemy units, move smoking tanks back/heal and replace with new tanks forward. Its important to put your tank in range of fewest neutral/enemy tank/turrets so it doesn’t begin to smoke that quick.

• Ninja drop in front of at enemy fortress if there is not much defence for 2X dmg (also important for distracting enemy’s Mech). You must press Y , otherwise the tank will attack nearest unit
1. drop it at point-blank range : enemy cannot drop a tank between yours and the fortress and delay the damage, but your tank is more vulnerable for attack from behind (you can meat shield it)
2. Drop it with certain spacing: enemy Mech can drop a tank in front of your tank and land/attack from behind – Not good

• Ninja drop Goliath is tricky, if you are Neo, use cloak and move it one step at a time. If you are about to be killed: Press Y immediately if you are close to enemy fortress, or Press B+B to self destruct if there is no ground underneath. Drop the Goliath at zero distance to the enemy fortress so they can’t drop their Goliath in between to block your fire.

• If you are carrying something and being intercepted by enemy Mech and about to die, drop your stuff before its too late (if you drop like when you still have 5% HP left, your units will still die with you – Latency issue)

• If enemy fortress has not much HP left, keep Y dropping Gemini/Longhorn at zero-distance to their base (find a gap, unless every inch of ground around base is occupied) and win

• For a long game, especially those into 30 mins ( both side’s fortress HP gonna drop in the same rate), you and your team mate should consider ninja drop Gemini in different positions around enemy fortress simultaneously (pick some from pushing force, if they are facing defence line and can not succeed anyway), the damage will be significant (unless they deploy tanks all around their fortress without a gap) that’ll also make them panic and increase chance of winning.

Evade chasing missiles/rockets
• When chased by huge number of missiles, not much HP left, and you have a high speed Mech, don’t hover over outpost right away (you’ll get killed anyways). Instead, circling around outpost and outrun missiles while heal yourself by passing over the outpost (hard to explain, just follow your instinct)
• If you have enough energy and using high speed Mech, you don’t have to run in a straight line, make a circling maneuver and you can easily dodge most missiles.
• On the ground, keep close to an wall (with elevation difference) to avoid missile/rocket hit. e.g walking closely around an outpost/fortress.
• You can also choose to land on an tactical position (e.g Valley, Bottom of a cliff) to avoid hit if the missiles are not very close.

Keep your units ALIVE!
• Everything cost money, if you let enemy destroy one, you lose the chance for recycling it for later use (e.g if it comes to Goliath). Its like a snowball effect
• Don’t send single unit towards enemy field to die, if something valuable is smoking (e.g a tank), go RESCUE it! Everything count in early-mid game.
• Enemy got XP if they kill your units, and level up faster if you kill less. Don’t let them!
• Avoid building unnecessary/fragile units like Jackel, Bucky and expose/send them to the front, easy kill for enemy

Capture Outpost
• Pickup walking soldiers (creep) from the road (Watch your minimap for triple small dots), Hold space bar and fly over them. Use them for capturing outpost, save a lot of $$$$! Only build soldiers if you have to.
• Sometimes its faster to pick up nearby walking soldiers (if lucky) than build some. Will be your life-saver.
• In most case entrance of the outpost will be defended by tanks or soldiers, shoot them to clear the path. Focus firing / teamwork will make it much easier.
• Deploy 4 tank to guard entrances of an outpost is good. But if money is limited, pick up creep and deploy them at entrances (for less-important outpost). Very important (and cost effective) against Ninja Drop if you don’t have that many tanks.
• When there is an emergency, such as enemy dropping soldiers at your outpost at an unguarded entrance. Bomber/Striker should land and melee kill them. Otherwise pick up unit from other entrance, seal the entrance ASAP
• Keep sharp on your radar (guardian helps in big map) if enemy attempt to Ninja capture (very dangerous). Pursuit and shoot them down, they’ll come back very soon if 2-3 soldiers went into your outpost, don’t let them survive!
• Pickup any soldier/creep available nearby to quickly recapture your outpost (also pre-build some soldiers when you see enemy coming for capture)
• If your critical outpost get captured, don’t panic, operate with your teammate to get it back asap. (focus firing, co-op drop, etc.)\
• If you ninja-captured enemy outpost close to their base with some tanks at entrances, but you are losing it for some reason, abandon the capture and Pick up the tanks and Y drop to their main base!

Y Push (Attack fortress) Guideline
• Don’t send units one by one to die, predict the capability of enemy defence lines, especially for mines and tank quantity.
• If next enemy outpost is less-defended, push main tank force using T to occupy the next enemy base (for a linear map/route), and don’t forgot to guard yours.
• Do NOT push in the direction where your enemy has similar amount of tanks, try weaken their defence using Artillery, or just shoot them yourselves.
• For pushing large number of tanks (10+), pick up first one and Y/T drop it behind, and gradually synchronize the rest so all your tanks are pushing closely together.
• Mix some seekers in force if enemy have bomber threat, they also kill ground Mech faster (can’t be strafed). Defend your pushing force (shoot enemy Bomber and Saucer!)
• In big map like Vale, Scouting is very important, Enemy cannot have a big force everywhere. Scout and analyse the weak point of enemy defence is vital, then decide your pushing strategy.
Deception and Decoy: in non-linear maps, try to cooperate with your team mate to trick your enemy. Two forces can be pushed simultaneously, or in sequence, while making your enemy believe that they are focusing on the main threat.
• If enemy establish a very strong defence line while your pushing force is halfway/or already engaging, work with your team mates, pick as many tanks from your force as you can and Y drop around enemy bases (find a blind spot/gap). So you can still deal a significant damage and might also distract your enemy.
Very important: Capture enemy outpost while they are busy dealing with your tanks (the one closest to their fortress will make them panic), make their post as your forward base.

T Push (Occupy Outpost) Guideline
• It’s a useful for all maps, and a lot of scenarios.
• This tactics is particularly useful against enemy outpost where there is a lot of artillery/AA but few tanks. While you scratching your head and don’t know what to do when you are stuck in an artillery war, since your frontline units are taking great damages.
• Get familiar with Y push techniques first, such as how to synchronize your tanks.
• When decide use this tactic, build as many tanks as you can on the safe side (safe from enemy fire), while your teammate or you stay managing your front artillery line, if necessary, remove all artillery/units that’s in enemy’s fire to save micro time. especially if the road between your outpost and enemy’s are not linear (e.g Nesthron middle to the next, Duel middle to the next).
• Think twice before you push, if the road connecting next enemy outpost and yours are linear (e.g Sandrim), they will have artillery facing you, your tanks might suffer great damage en route.
• To make push more effective, while your force is moving in a line and engaging enemy, pick up some tanks and quickly drop around enemy outpost to quickly overwhelm them, while one player in the team focus on dropping soldiers once an entrance is open.
• Micro-manage your tanks, keep picking up good health tanks in front of smoking ones, if you have time!
• Begin T-Push right after you kill enemy Mech will give you an even better chance.
• Again, protect your pushing force! watch for enemy Warthog and Bomber.

NOT: T-command will need improvement in the future so that units will not proceed to the next outpost if the target outpost is occupied.

Overtime Guideline
• If your team and enemy team are close in late game, or reached an impase, or you are solid turtling, prepare for overtime early. Especially in large maps, where unit caps are limited and one team can’t have force everywhere.
Before 30:00 mark, deal as much damage to enemy fortress as you can, by drop Gemi/Longhorn at their base’ front (each Gemini drop can deal about 5% damage at front, if it survive 10 seconds), before they realized that they should fortify their base.
• After 30:00, if your fortress has significant higher HP, defend it at all cost, don’t bother attacking enemy.
• Prevent any outpost close to your base being captured, or it will be used for last minute drop.
Focus fire on all incoming drop, especially Osprey who can double drop, cooperation is vital!
Cover your base 360 degrees with all sorts of units to prevent any drop damage.
• If enemy drop a tank near your base, immediately drop a tank in between (block) and kill the enemy tank from back asap.
• If you have control of outpost close to enemy, use that and keep drop tanks to their base, find the best angle/gap.
• Upgrade Creep ASAP if both team surround their base with units, SAM’s rocket can hit fortress over defending units.

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