Clash of Clans How to War for TH3-TH7
Clash of Clans How to War for TH3-TH7 by ReD_Cl0uD
This section aims to provide advice on how to analyze bases and attack at each town hall level. I will add additional content for each town hall as the comments reveal any gaps in the advice for each town hall level. For the purposes of this guide, I assume you are attacking a base of the same town hall level fully maxed out. While there are certainly other strategies you could employ, the ones I describe are the strongest available for that TH level in my opinion. After you master these, I would encourage you to experiment with other compositions.
There are lots of tools that let you plan your army composition, but the one I like the best is Clash Calc because it lets you automatically set your town hall level and you can easily save compositions and reset values.
One common misconception is that war raids are basically the same as normal raids. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. The bases you find in war will be designed specifically to prevent you from 3 starring them (or they should be). This means that instead of protecting loot, players are protecting their town hall and this distinction will change what strategies are effective. Also, any serious opponent will have their clan castles filled up with troops to ruin your raid. These are typically much more powerful than what you will encounter in the few clan castles that do have troops in normal raids (more about this in the next paragraph). For these two reasons, I firmly believe that each base should be analized and a composition build accordingly. Just building the same army and throwing it at bases like you do in normal queue isn’t going to reward you with consistent 3 stars in clan wars. Learning to pick apart bases and exploit their weaknesses takes a little time and effort, but it will be worth it when you are crushing all your enemies in clan wars sending them crying back to their mommies.
Before you attack at any town hall level, always check how many (if any) troops are in the opponent’s Clan Castle (CC). You can scout their base and tap on the CC to check this. You will need to plan a strategy for killing the CC if you want your raid to be successful. Ignoring the enemy CC is a recipe for disaster as the CC has the potential to be the most powerful defense of any village (more about this in the defending section) depending on placement and what is inside.
The three steps to killing an enemy clan castle at TH3-TH7 are as follows:
1- Lure the enemy clan castle troops
You’ll notice when you tap on the enemy clan castle that there is a white radius. This shows you at what point the troops will begin to exit. You will need to get troops of your own inside that radius for long enough that the enemy CC will empty out. You can sometimes do this with a single barbarian if the CC has a radius that extends outside the range of the opposing base defenses … but sometimes you’ll need to send a giant or two in towards the defenses to ensure you get all the troops out. In rare cases, you’ll need to send giants plus wallbreakers. For mass dragon raids (more on that in the TH7 section) you can simply let your dragons trigger the CC as they attack.
2- Pull the enemy CC to a kill zone using an “Anchor”
This step involves using an archer (or barb if you want) to pull the enemy CC outside the range of the enemy defenses. You don’t want your kill squad to be taking fire from the enemy defenses while they fight the enemy CC as this makes it more difficult for them to do their job. Just find a building that is outside the defense range and drop an archer on it.
3- Kill the enemy CC
This can be done a variety of ways. I will suggest a strategy for each town hall level in the sections below. The big key is you should try to make sure some portion of your kill squad remains intact to join the raid or begin cleanup. While this isn’t of high importance at early town hall levels, it becomes of critical importance at TH8 and beyond, so it is best to culture good habits now. While it may be tempting to spam barbs and archers around the enemy CC, it is far more effective to get them grouped up and drop in barbs in a line with archers supporting them in a small arc behind. Once you unlock wizards, they can replace the archers to take out bunched enemy CC troops quickly and effectively.
70 Camp Space + 10. No Spells
The best way to kill the enemy CC at this level is to use barbarians as meat shields and archers to pick off the CC. ~5 barbarians and ~15 archers should do the trick for most enemy CCs.
In this bracket, you’re up against 2 cannons, an archer tower, and a mortar. If you can get 2 baloons (preferably level 5 or higher) in your clan castle, a giant can be used to distract the archer tower while the loons take it out. The loons will then kill the cannons and the mortar, and you can cleanup the base with a swarm of archers/barbs surrounding the base. Alternatively, you can funnel in ~8 giants supported by archers/barbs. If you do that, watch out for the mortar because it will target your archers when your giants get close! The key is keeping the archers spread out behind the giants.
80 Camp Space + 15. No Spells
The big offensive upgrade for TH4 is baloons and they are the easiest way to secure 3 stars in your war attacks at this town hall level.
CC kill strategy remains unchanged from the last town hall level. If, however, you are lucky enough to obtain a witch and 3 barbs OR 3 wiz and 3 barbs in your clan castle, you can deploy your clan castle to kill the enemy CC. For witches, support with archers. For wizards, support with more barbs.
Raids at TH4 have three main steps:
- Kill the enemy Air Defense
- Deploy balloons
Seriously though, take out the AD with either 3 hogs from your CC (use giants to distract nearby defenses before dropping hogs) OR giants/wallbreakers. Follow this up with balloons on the two archer towers. Then spam archers around the enemy base for the 3*. Be sure to watch out for the enemy mortar’s splash damage, keep those archers spread out. I would advise against getting a healer in your clan castle and going with a large pack of giants, as the loss of 15 camp space worth of DPS can sometimes mean you run out of time before you can complete the raid even if all the defenses die to your giants.
135 Camp Space + 15. 1 Spell
You get a major leap in offensive power at TH5, and many players may simply wish to rush this town hall level and upgrade all the offensive capabilities before anything else. You get +55 camp space, the lightning spell, and unlock wizards
For nearly all enemy CCs, the lightning spell can take them out, no need for a kill squad. Always have a few barbs/archerse in the wings just in case. You can of course still get a witch/wizards in your CC just like at TH4, but it is usually a waste.
Now that you’ve unlocked wizards, you can start working on what will be considered a standard self-made kill squad till you reach TH9. Use a few archers to walk the enemy CC back and forth till they are in a nice little pack. Drop 2-3 barbs immediately followed by wizards in an arc. Then drop in 1 barb at a time (about 1 per second or so) while your wizards fry whatever your barbs are so valiantly throwing themselves on or towards. This usually requires ~7 barbs, ~7 archers, and 3-5 wizards. Again, always have some extra troops in the wings for reinforcements in case things go bad.
There is still only 1 air defense, so you plan remains the same as it was at TH4, you just get more troops to accomplish those same steps. You can sprinkle in wizards with your archers for some extra punch … they really help in taking out high HP buildings like storages. Despite the fact that you do have much more camp space, I would caution against using giant-based compositions due to time considerations. Enough giants to take out all the defenses can leave you with little in the way of DPS to support those giants.
150 Camp Space + 20. 2 Spells
Ah, the land of Giant/healer/wizard (or GiHeWi). At TH6, you unlock the heal spell as well as an additional spell slot and believe me, it is a game changer. You also get a small bump in camp space (15) and you can now house the mighty dragon in your clan castle if desired.
Your enemies will now have 4 spring traps, an additional wizard tower, mortar, a giant bomb, and 20 camp space in their CC …. yikes!
See TH5 for self-made kill squad. If you run into a dragon in an enemy CC, lure it out, pull it to a corner, and make a semi-circle of archers/wizards around it. The dragon will spin around trying to kill them all while getting mutilated in the process.
Now that you have 150 camp space and have unlocked healers you can use Giant/Healer. While this strategy is powerful, especially with the recent healer buff (air mines don’t hit healers), I would caution you against relying on it solely. It requires far more mechanical skill and planning to execute properly versus the approach we have been using since TH4: destroy the AD, deploy your loons, swarm the base. There is still only one air defense at TH6, so if you can take it out with hogs from your clan castle, or a small squad of giants and wizards, baloons (or a dragon) can easily wipe out the rest of the defenses, leaving the base open to your archer swarms. Getting 2 heal spells makes getting to that air defense even easier.
If you do want to use giant/healer, I would advise you use two packs of giants with one healer on each pack. The reason why is that if you use just one pack, the support wizards tend to wander off and die to point defense that are too far from your giants to be locked on to them. Your biggest enemy here is losing too many wizards to point defenses and/or running out of time… which is why I prefer the same method we’ve been using since TH4 as you get LOADS of archers/wizards for cleanup using that method. Keep in mind, a single spring trap can kill 3 giants and if you hit all 4 that’s 12 giants! This means you’ll need to take more than 12 … probably 16-20 to be safe. With 2 healers, that only leaves about 20 camp space for your cleanup troops … which is a LOT less than what we’ve been using up until now. Anyway, you know why I don’t like this strategy. Use it at your own risk.
200 Camp Space + 20. 3 Spells and the barbarian king!
The function of your newly spawned barbarian king will be to tank archer towers for your dragons after they have taken out the enemy CC and/or help with cleaning up spread out buildings. Get him to level 5 ASAP so he can tank and cleanup even harder.
You can take a break from worrying about enemy CCs until you unlock hogs level 3 at TH8. When using dragons, you can rely on the dragon’s splash damage to kill the enemy CC. In fact, you can use the enemy CC to draw your dragons towards an air defense (AD).
One neat trick you can do is use an archer/barb/minion/giant to trigger an offset enemy clan castle. You can then place your anchor so that the enemy clan castle will run over the AD you plan to zap (see below) and drop your lightning spells while the enemy CC is running over the AD. This takes a little practice to get right, but it does save some time for your dragons (they don’t have to waste attacks killing the enemy CC while the AD is hitting them) and it is a useful skill to have as you progress to hitting TH8s with that pesky third AD.
Two words: Mass Dragons. Read on young padawan.
The way this strategy works is that you use 3 lightning spells directly on top of the most protected enemy AD (whichever one is the deepest into the enemy base). Zoom in and make sure you drop the spells directly in the middle of the AD or it might not go down. You then deploy your dragons in an arc on the side of the base closest to the remaining AD. Watch the base go up in flames. Its kind of ridiculous how easy this is … and unless you like losing clan wars there really isn’t much reason to get any fancier than this.
Usually, you’ll want to take 10 dragons with an extra dragon in your clan castle. Sometimes though, it can be helpful to drop down to 9 of your own dragons and use the extra 20 camp space on archers or minions to pick off pesky builder huts in the corners while your dragons take out the main base.
If the enemy has a witch in their clan castle, take care to not drop ground troops anywhere until the skeletons are all dead. If the dragons have not yet killed the spanwed skeletons and you drop your barb king or an archer, the skeletons will run to the ground troop and the dragons will follow them across the map. While this is absolutely hilarious to watch, you will not be the one laughing when your attack fails to 3 star the enemy base. For this reason, I would recommend using minions instead of archers or barbs if you choose to employ this strategy and ALWAYS wait till the enemy CC is dead to drop your barbarian king.
Another neat trick you can do is get level 5+ loons or level 3+ hogs in your clan castle. If there is a highly exposed air defense, it can be taken out by hogs making your dragon attack that much easier. You can also send in loons behind your dragons as then approach an enemy AD. The drags will have to kill whatever buildings are between them and the AD, but the loons will go right for the AD (provided it is the closest building to where you dropped your loons). As long as the dragons are tanking the nearby archer tower(s) and AD, the loons can take out several buildings before going down and even pick up some air bombs. Getting used to using loons now will only prepare you better for TH8, where loons become a MAJOR part of nearly every dragon raid.
This section will primarily focus on key base building concepts and clan castle troop compositions. Keep in mind I am giving advice for defending against competent opponents. This definitely impacts how you would build a base or what you would put in your clan castle. Expecting to be attacked by noobs and defending against them is a waste of your time, since you should be beating those clans anyway if your clanmates are following Part 1 of this guide.
- Principle 1 – Always upgrade Offense First
There will always be someone who can easily 3 star you at these early town hall levels, no matter how sweet of a base you build. For that reason, make sure you max out your offensive capabilities at any given town hall level before working on defense. This will allow you to take out enemies of similar rank, and will prevent your war matchups from getting too hard before you’re ready as matchups look more at your defense levels than troop/offense levels for making matches.
- Principle 2 – Always centralize your clan castle
Your clan castle is your best defense against enemy raids. I you make it impossible to lure (the trigger radius is all within the deployable troop area outside your base) and fill it with awesome troops (see below) it can completely demolish an unprepared attacker. Don’t be afraid to use large wall compartments and space inside your walls to accomplish this objective. Tight wall compartments aren’t stopping anyone anyways since wallbreakers and baloons are a thing. Force your opponent to invest 10 or even more troops into luring your clan castle and sit back and watch attacks bounce off your base for 0-2 stars.
For those who say an unlurable clan castle is impossible at early town hall levels, I beg to differ. Here is my lone cannon base on my third account that has defended 4/5 of the last atacks against it: http://guidescroll.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/dW0YuRQ.png. Obviously, your opponents will be able to 3 star you using the methods I have already described for offense, but the clan castle is your greatest weapon for punishing anyone who throws a sloppy attack your way … much like the poor souls who fell prey to my savage base design linked above.
No matter what town hall level you are, wars are won by the clan that gets more 3 star raids. For this reason, protecting your town hall is of secondary importance to maximizing the power of your clan castle in defending your base from a 3* raid. While I don’t advise you put the town hall outside your base, you should think of your town hall more as a high HP damage soak to slow up troops on their way to your more important buildings like mortars, wizard towers, or air defenses.
- Principle 3 – Make your air defense(s) and splash damage difficult to reach
If you’ve read part 1, you’ll know that these two defenses are the highest value defenses for any competent attacker. For that reason, you should put them in the core or second layer of your base’s walls and utilize traps and funneling to protect them.
- Principle 4 – Do not give away “free” anchor points
While this can be very difficult to do, as much as is possible do not give the enemy a “free” anchor point to pull your CC away from your base defenses. Builder huts in the corner are the most common offenders here. Will it stop a bad attack from 3 starring you due to time? Yeah sure… but those aren’t the attackers you’re worried about. You’re going to 3 star every enemy since you read part 1 of this guide, so do everything in your power to defend against a good attacker by making them invest even more troops to pull your clan castle outside your base and kill it. Intentionally (or unintentionally) placing buildings outside the range of your defenses just makes it easier for attackers to pick apart and 3 star your base.
Clan Castle Compositions
I should note that Valks in the clan castle is extremely strong against inexperienced players all the way up to TH6. However, they do not defend against air troops in any way and because skilled attackers will most definitely use air troops against you, I prefer not to use them past TH3. Similarly to the reasoning in Principle 4; will having a CC valk prevent a 3 star if someone uses a ground attack and forgets to lure your CC? Yeah sure … but a valk is pretty easy for a competent attacker to deal with using the methods I described in part 1. Don’t defend noobs, you’re going to beat them anyway. Defend against difficult opponents.
There isn’t much you can do with so few buildings and only 10 slots in your clan castle (CC). Since you will be attacked almost exclusively by ground troops, 1 valk 1 minion is a pretty awesome CC. If you fear balloons from enemy attacks, 5 minions is highly effective.
Again, its tough to prevent a 3 star but an unlurable CC with a powerful punch can prevent untrained attackers from 3 starring you. With 15 slots, I recommend 2 wizard 3 minion 1 goblin for its versatility in dealing with balloons and giants.
It is still nearly impossible to prevent a 3 star at this town hall level but your clan castle can still save the day if someone attacks you haphazardly. 2 wizard 3 minion 1 goblin is still the best all purpose composition for your clan castle of 15 slots in my opinion.
Now we’re talking! you get 4 spring traps, an extra mortar and an extra wizard tower! 125 walls isn’t a lot but it is SO many more than 100 when you are base building. The principles from the start of this post apply, and at 20 camp space, a dragon becomes the most powerful troop for your clan castle. The issue with a dragon is it is easy to lure and can be surrounded with 10-15 archers outside the range of your defenses and taken out fairly easily. For this reason, I would recommend upgrading your composition to 2 wizard, 3 minion, 6 archer. This keeps people trying to lure your CC honest, and packs a punch at the end.
If you read part 1, you already know people are going to be face rolling you with dragons. You have several options for trying to trip people up:
- 4 wizard 1 minion
This one probably gives you the best chance of actually killing some dragons as the wizards can fry some dragons if the attacker is dumb enough to bunch them up.
- 3 wizard, 2 minion OR 4 goblin
This is a bit less all or nothing than the previous CC, providing a little distraction for the drags to give the 3 wizards cover to do some damage. You can use goblins (or barbs) instead of minions for the possibility of dragons chasing the ground troops across the map towards ground troops dropped without reason (see part 1 for description of how this works).
Fight fire with fire … while it is certainly still easy to lure and kill, most people won’t and a level 3+ dragon can definitely take out several low level drags on its own, especially when supported by nearby defenses.