MechWarrior Online Maps Basic Tips

MechWarrior Online Maps Basic Tips by Endarius

It seems like I see a lot of people whose piloting skills and targeting need work these days, but I think a large factor that is hampering the development of these skills is the general chaos that seems to be all but omnipresent in lone wolf play. I’m just going to list off some key factors for each map that people can consider when trying to get into the fray without getting immediately fragged. Correct positioning is what will allow people to develop their skills and start to actually inflict damage and get kills in a game that is pretty unforgiving if you run a few hundred feet the wrong direction.

*note: many of these things are useful on all maps, I’m just using specific maps as primary examples.

Click here for pictures of the maps

Forest Colony:
There is a big lake on this map. This might seem attractive if you have a high heat variant, but trust me, it’s a killing field, and maybe the conflict will drift in that direction later, but going anywhere near that wide open space early in the game is just not a good idea. Even if you are a sniper or an LRM  boat, the line of site is so good that an enemy scout mech will have you painted in a second. As to the rest of the map, it’s basically  designed to string people out and funnel them along different pathways, this can create opportunities, but it will also cut you off from your group. Bear in mind, the enemy will shoot at what they can see, so if you max your throttle and get ahead of the others you will pop around the corner first and get riddled. Try to come around corners at the approximate same time as other ‘mechs, this will spread out the damage.

Caustic Valley:
The obvious issue here is heat. There is a couple of small patches of water, which are nice to run through if you get the chance, but as in the colony, they are pretty wide open, so move through them if you need to bleed off some heat, but don’t stick around. As to the crater, aside from a scout mech taking a shortcut, you generally won’t see any seasoned player go anywhere aside from the edge of the crater. It just isn’t worth it. The additional heat is so prohibitve to your damage output that it’s basically suicide. Any advantage in position you gain is nullified by the lack of cover and the fact that after your second salvo you are likely to shut down. In general this map is about wide open space, and seems to have little cover. Remember though, this lack of cover is also very unfortunate for scouts. Pick them off when you see them dashing through those wide open spaces. If an enemy team loses their scouts it’s alot easier to use what little cover there is to form up just over ridges and then drive in to break their formation.

Frozen City:
Well now, here we have a cold map. Nice. It makes you just a little less worried about heat. You can still overheat though, so don’t get cocky and forget to look at your heat level. Also, you’re likely to fire more often just to get a kill on this map because visibility is lower, and immediate cover is closer to hand. Now, the tunnel. Unless you are in a fast medium mech or a scout, you probably don’t want to go in there. It’s good to sweep through with a scout to prevent a backdoor attack on your base, but it’s a deathtrap for groups of mechs, particularily heavies or missile reliant variants. Almost invariably, if a group tries to make it through that tunnel, they get jammed up when the big guys cram in and clever enemies near the entrance can fire mercilessly into the confused mob. IF you’re gonna go into the tunnel at all, try to wait until you know where the enemy is. If 6 of them are all pretty far from the entrance, then maybe you can boot it through for a flank or a base cap. But if you know that at least 5 enemies are unnacounted for, stay the heck out and keep an eye on the entrance if you can.

River City:
Bridges get people killed. They are hard to run across, you cannot juke or you’ll fall off, and you are a very easy target. There are lots of ways to get around without ever setting foot on a bridge. If you have the highground, bear in mind that abandoning it puts your enemy if a really swank position if they try to cap because then THEY have it. This is one of those times it’s better to keep a couple of guys close to home and try to start up small frays instead of big ones. If you don’t have the highground, try to wait until a scout has perused the area. You might be able to snag a nice cap, but their might be 2 atlases camping home base.

None of these rules are written in stone, but I feel that these guidelines would be useful for new players who are just learning how to keep track of all the variables in the game. There is alot to think about in that 15 minute match, but if you have a clear idea in your mind of a few specific things with regard to terrain and formation, You’re more likely to start doing well. It also helps to TELL teammates that what they are doing might be a bad idea. They might ignore you and die anyway, but they might pull back and help you get a kill later too.

Let’s try and build up the number of savvy mechwarriors that can lead by example as more people continue flood into the battlefield.

That’s my two cents.

Best of luck new Mechwarriors

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