Results 1 to 41 of 41

Newb Strategy Guide

  1. #1

    Newb Strategy Guide


    So I'm trying to write a New Newb Strategy Guide and I wanted to go ahead and throw the first draft out there to see what you guys thought. This is meant for people who are just starting out in automatch and have no idea where to start. Feel free to make comments or add your own "things to consider."

    Newb Strategy Guide:


    First off, I’m no pro. On some of the more competitive websites, I’d still be considered a total noob. This guide is just an attempt at zeroing in on some of the basic concepts to get you started. If you enjoy yourself and start moving up the ladder, it’ll be up to your own potential to break through the more difficult plateaus of the competition. In order to facilitate this guide, many of the concepts will be generalized to a great extent. If someone wants to embellish or vehemently disagree with something… then write your own guide. Hopefully this will kick start more guides for advanced tactics, specific races, maps, etc.

    Multiplayer is the bread and butter of DOW. If you’re just starting out there’s a ton of information to digest and it can seem overwhelming.

    Moving from a different style to 1v1 auto:

    If you’re used to unranked friendly games or Quick Start (QS) then prepare yourself: automatchers are out for blood. There is no leeway. There are no gimmes. If there is IMBA, then IMBA will be there. If there is a way to cheat, then there will be cheating. That being said, the fiercely competitive nature is what will ultimately bring you the most exhilarating games (even if you don’t win them).


    A lot of this stuff is covered in the tutorial, but let’s go over some of it again.


    Micro – The measure of effective actions required in controlling your army. This is often lumped together with micro-specific tactics regarding how well you control your units during combat. Some people think this is a measure of speed, but is really more properly defined as the accuracy in which you give these commands. Speed is usually important too. Casting spells, moving ranged away from melee units, and teleporting units are all examples of Micro.

    Macro – This is everything that doesn’t fall under Micro, typically involving the management of upgrades, teching and the like. Building Waaagh Banners, buying a global requisition upgrade and considering strategies are all examples of Macro.

    Armor Types
    – Every unit has an armor class that defines its ability to take damage.

    – This refers to Damage Per Second and is used as a measure of how effective the unit is against the armor types of DOW.

    – This is a specific type of Micro that eludes to how effectively you move your ranged units for maximum efficiency. It’s called dancing because it almost always involves “dancing” your ranged units around melee units.

    IMBA – Stands for Imbalanced. IMBA is the bane and fuel of game forums. In general if you believe something is imbalanced (too strong/too weak) it’s best to have a nice argument rather than just slinging this “word” about. Try to be constructive.

    – Overpowered. A cousin of IMBA.

    – The Ultimate IMBA. Using this word means that you think the situation is completely hopeless. Once again, think carefully before deeming something broken.

    – this refers to having an excess of unspent resources and is generally a bad idea

    – moving up the tech ladder. This game is defined by 4 tiers, though many people will talk about tier 1.5, tier 2.5, tier 0, etc.

    There is another guide that has even more slang terms and definitions.



    This is the main resource that you earn by capturing strategic points or relics on the map (the blue ones). After capturing them you should always place an LP on it to defend it from decapping and to generate even more requisition.


    This is the second resource that you accrue by building generators. Every race has this resource. It is used for teching, vehicles, and a whole assortment of other things. Necrons are unique in that power is their only resource, which means they need lots.

    Third Resource:

    In Soulstorm there are new resources that are race specific. If you decide to play Dark Eldar or Sisters of Battle, be sure to check up on how these new resources affect their tactics.

    Economy Boosters:

    War is waged with money more than anything else. There are a few ways to increase your resources even more. Remember that anytime you spend on INCREASING RESOURCES you are spending LESS ON TROOPS.


    For 100req and 75power (100/75) you can upgrade an LP to an LP2. LP2s generate an additional +6 req, increase the LP’s HP, and equip the structure with a defensive turret. Most players upgrade their LPs as the game progresses.

    Global Bonuses:

    The cost varies by race, but there are some global increases that you can purchase after reaching tier 2. They are designed to even out your resources – the one that costs a lot of power will give you a global requisition increase and vice versa. Many players grab at least one of these whenever they can.

    Critical Locations:

    Critical locations are the orange dots on the mini-map. Although they cannot be LPed, if you control 2/3s of them it starts the Take and Hold countdown timer. They also give the +6 req bonus.

    Time Savers:


    By holding shift while you delineate commands, you can create chains of orders that make things easier to manage. If you take a scout, hold shift and then right click on random points on the map, the scout will run from point to point until he has completed all of the tasks. He will follow orders to the letter, so if you send him into enemy territory he won’t stop and fight (though he will fire a few shots on the move as he is running his course). This is especially useful for capping strategic points. You can shift-click on several strategic points and the scout will capture them in order.

    You can also cue up buildings in this way. While your servitor is building the temple, hold shift and then build a generator. The animation for the uncompleted generator will appear and the servitor will get to work on it when he finishes the temple.

    You can shift click an army to destroy buildings in a particular order. Highlight your tac mass and then shift-click each Necron generator one by one. The tac mass will destroy them in the order you desire.

    Anytime you give a single new command that is not shift-clicked to a unit that has been given several shift-clicked orders, the new command will override the entire series. If your scout who was going to capture 3 points in succession is interrupted by a harassing squad and you have to run away, your sequence is lost.


    Some people use them, some people don’t. Almost any production, spell, or extra-curricular movement action can be used with a corresponding letter on your keyboard. Here are a few important, nearly universal ones:

    B = build
    P = plasma generator
    B , P = build plasma generator (most races use plasma generators for power)
    J = all teleports and jumps
    R = reinforce
    A = Attack
    U = Upgrade (for LP2s)

    Look through your race for all of its unique hotkeys.


    Squad System:

    Instead of controlling individual units like many RTSs, you have control over squads. IF YOU RIGHT CLICK ON THE REINFORCE BUTTON you’ll cause that squad to AUTO-REINFORCE; this will cause the squad to continually reinforce until it maxes out its squad size. Many top players actually AVOID using this because they are better at eyeballing how many reinforcements they actually need which leaves them with more “cash.”

    Pop Cap:

    Almost all RTSs have pop-cap. Every unit takes up a certain amount of this cap and when you reach it you can no longer produce units until that cap is increased or some of you units die.

    Ten Things to Consider:

    1.) Attack Move Vs. Right Clicking

    This is an important distinction. When you Right-Click a spot on the map, the squad will move to that place and IGNORE everything else. It’ll probably fire some shots on the move but will continue to its destination unabated.

    If you click “A” (attack) and then let click a spot on the map, the squad will stop and attack any opposing squad on its way to that spot. This is “attack move” and the act of stopping to attack will keep the squad from continuing on its designated route.

    The main thing to get from this distinction is that you want to use ATTACK MOVE WHEN YOU SEND A UNIT INTO THE FOG OF WAR. Otherwise, you unit may run into the enemy and get shot up as it tries to continue to where you clicked.

    Attack Move is also useful for ranged units with long range and/or set-up times.

    2.) Build Order (BO)

    A build order is typically defined as what you purchase and the order you cap your points in the first minute of the game. You are probably slower than you think at this point. Good players have their build orders down to the letter. So what makes a good build order?

    Capping order

    This is the order in which you cap your points. If done correctly, your units will move smoothly from point to point and you’ll have money to LP them. Oftentimes, a good capping order will result in the army coming together at some designated point with smoothness. With so many maps it isn’t easy to have different build orders with different plans in mind, but that’s just the massiveness of this game coming in.

    Generator VS Extra Troop in the BO

    For most races you need to decide if you want to build a generator or use that money to buy an extra squad at the beginning. Some races, like Eldar, almost require a generator to start (though it isn’t 100% necessary). Consider the implications of this decision. If you buy a generator you will generate power early, which is great for LP2s and teching in general. However, you will be short one squad and if your opponent recognizes this he might get aggressive against you. In the opposite scenario, you will have an extra squad. Your tech will be slowed, but you’ll have an extra capper/fighter on your hands to use against your opponent. So essentially, if you build a generator to start, remember to get the full effects – use that power on something early. If you build an extra squad, get aggressive or try to take more than your share of the map.

    Sample BO

    Grot builds Da Boyz Hut
    Cue Grot, Slugga, Slugga (G,S,S) at HQ
    2nd Grot helps build Da Boyz Hut, shift-click (cue) generator
    1st Slugga caps far point, cue next closest point
    2nd Slugga caps close point, cue to cap relic afterwards
    cue Shoota, Big Mek at Hut
    Shoota caps point right next to hut
    Grots build LP on far point

    Practicing BO

    Try practicing your BOs against the computer, but only work on the first two minutes of the game. I think you’ll be surprised how many seconds you can shave off the process and how much it’ll affect the overall game.

    3.) What Beats What

    This is probably the largest category to learn in the game – knowing what is gonna kill what. Considering the amount on units, armor types and other modifiers, this is a beast. Fortunately, you can look over the numbers with the Dawn of War Player's Guide . Don’t forget about these things:

    Squad Size
    Squad Leader Present
    Upgrades (Armor, Health, Weapons Upgrades, etc)
    Race Bonuses (Chaos taint, Fleet of Foot)
    Defensive Structures Present (LP2s, mines, turrets)

    Ultimately, watching replays will give you the best idea of what beats what. Overestimating your enemy will cause you to miss opportunities to advance and crush your opponent. Underestimating your enemy will get your army sync-killed. This is the meat and potatoes of the game.

    4.) Ranged Support

    Technically, it could be said that a perfect player will never take damage from a plain melee squad. When a squad runs away from a superior melee squad, the chasing squad will get minimal hits on the escaping squad. On the bottom of the automatch ladder you may find that your melee squads perform surprisingly well, but don’t let this fool you – as you move up against more skilled players they will be much quicker to dance their ranged units away. This means that melee squads function much better when they have RANGED SUPPORT. If you are chasing a squad through the fire of a supporting ranged squad, you’ll get in a lot more damage. Now, you might be saying, “but I love axes and close combat - - WAAAAGH!” I agree. However, if you chose to do melee only you must always equal or out-squad the enemy. If you equal the enemy, it is, against a good player, a standstill. If you out-squad the enemy then you can keep his units busy while your extra squad starts tearing things down. It isn’t one of the more practical ways to do things (but it IS orky). Lesson: RANGED SUPPORT WILL BRING THE PAIN.

    5.) Switching Stances

    Most people like F2 better than F1 for unit behavior. With F1 units are more prone to chase while with F2 they wait for orders more often.

    The real important switch is between ranged and melee. Most units do best at whatever they are set on upon being commissioned. There are many situations in which you can inflict more damage the other way around.

    Heroes are especially versatile and often have exceptional ranged and melee damage. Try switching with them first to get accustomed to it (and use the hotkeys: F6 for melee, F7 for ranged).

    Other times you might want to switch:

    * You want to use ranged specialists to “tie up” other squads. This is a common and important move. Two ranged squad with low melee damage can be used to “interrupt” each other. Scouts are a good example of units that can tie up other ranged squads, but be careful not to use them to tie up a ranged unit that also has decent melee.

    * There isn’t enough room for the melee specialists to get involved.

    * You want to kill off the last member of a fleeing squad so you switch your whole army to ranged for a second.

    * The unit has powerful ranged and melee damage (Grey Knights for one).

    6.) Squad Survival

    Since this is squad based you want to KEEP THEM ALIVE. It is much less expensive and less time-consuming to reinforce a wounded squad then to build it anew. DON’T LOSE SQUADS. That being said, there are some cases where it’s unavoidable. Big Mek, with his powerful but poorly aimed gun, will sometimes pop a cap in a Stealth Suit and there’s really nothing you can do about it. The Chaos Sorceror’s spell Chains of Torment is another time in which you might not be able to do anything to save the squad.


    Be careful about lone squads getting into nooks and crannies where they can be cornered. It’ll happen, but there are times when this is a mistake (and others when it is inevitable).

    7.) Ctrl Groups

    You can highlight any combination of units or buildings and then press Ctrl and a number 1-9 to assign that group to the designated number. This is an RTS staple. It is best used to arrange your troops. Some people assign every little thing to a number. I prefer to assign according to type, so I might make 4 may Firewarriors, 5 my Kroot, 6 my Anti-Vechicle and 3 my entire army.

    I’m a big fan of assigning unit-production buildings to control groups because you can buy reinforcements without returning to your base. For example, in the middle of a battle I could press 2 (for the Barracks), and then press K for another squad of Kroot (provided I can afford it) all while keeping my eye on the present battle. It’s handy.

    8.) Watching Replays

    If you want to get better you have to take an active approach when you watch replays.

    First, watch the good players do it. They don’t have to be pros, in fact, sometimes it’s better to watch replays that are around +200 of your score so the game at least looks like what you might face. Try watching the replays with the FOG OF WAR ON so you can see what types of decisions the player is making in a real-time situation. I like to pause the game at regular intervals and check how each player’s economy is doing. Also remember that this is a great time for “What beats what” analysis. There is a replay section here at in the Strategy Section.

    A couple of other good replay sites:

    9.) Harassing

    Harassing is getting in your opponent's grill. Your progress will be directly tied to your ability to harass. Good players know where their opponent is in their capping order and will do what they can to interrupt them. Chaos Raptors are a good example of a harassing unit (though any unit can be a harasser). Chaos players through many iterations of DOW have built raptors as fast as possible and then sent them after the enemy. The victim of this harass will have to change his order of operations to fend off the harass, and, if he doesn't do it effectively, the chaos player will take the map. IT IS BETTER TO BE THE HARASSER THAN THE HARASS-EE.

    10.) Think

    After getting a handle of some of these concepts you find yourself still losing and losing, understand that there is much more than what is contained in this little guide. The differences between maps warrants its own guide (one that I would like to read actually). The differences between races are deeper than you might think. A simple example would be that LP2s are more valuable on maps with less points since they translate to a greater percentage increase in requisition due to the fact that there is less requisition generated from the map. Another example would be that Big Mek is more effective against IG if he comes out as quickly as possible since the Command Squad doesn't start at full strength. That gives you about 20 extra seconds of stronger-than-them time to push him around.

    It ain't easy, but winning feels good.
    Last edited by silvtown; 25th Mar 08 at 10:40 AM.

  2. #2
    I think this guide is very well written for new players! Well done

    In fact I have some mates that don't play too often that I am going to show in this direction!

    It might be an idea to add a link to the grid hotkeys for SS - I think grid hotkeys are so much easier to use.

    Other than that it's a good starting reference point, without being an information overload
    Nice one!

  3. #3
    Thanks, I'm hoping it'll help the influx of new players.

    And for those of you who view it, say something about it (you don't even have to read it) so it doesn't disappear into strategy forum void.

  4. #4
    Excellent guide, silvtown. I started playing multi again after a long hiatus, and I feel like the worst player on automatch. But guides like this really help me out.


  5. #5
    Heh, so thats how control groups work. Thanks =P

  6. #6
    Silvtown this is an excellent guide, really. I think it masterfully summarizes the general basics of the game. Good job man!

    By the way, I did a small “funny tactical guide” for some friends not long ago. It explained (in a funny way) how to cleverly place and move your units in the battlefield, and basically the most common tricks. If you think it can help to expand this wonderful guide I can post it here or send it to you first. It is in spanish, but I guess I can translate it to a readable english (for a perfect english you would have to do it by yourself, sorry).

  7. #7
    very good i can only say what has been said now lets hope this is mabe into a sticky.

  8. #8
    These sort of threads seem very rarely made into a sticky I have noticed
    It would be really good if it were tho
    it would answer a lot new players (potential) threads/questions on the forum

  9. #9
    I don't know what has to happen to make something into a sticky. Overwhelming reply count? Pandering to those in power? Subtly bumping it back into view when it nears the bottom of the page? The guide itself is pretty much done, so we'll see.

  10. #10
    Subtly bumping it back into view when it nears the bottom of the page?
    like this

  11. #11
    This is great, but you should add in overwatch ie. rightclicking the reinforce icon, nobody mentions it in the manual

  12. #12
    It's actually in there under the Battle section - I just all-caps'd it to make it stand out a little.

  13. #13
    can you put inside your guide to those new player online
    please help your allies
    dun stay inside your base and build up
    when your allies attack, send some squads to assist them.
    when your allies defend, send some squads to assist them.

  14. #14
    This guide is only for 1v1 situations as that is all I'm accustomed to playing. Someone else will have to write a "how to not be a sucky teammate" guide.

  15. #15
    Member ErichTheGraham's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Houston, Texas
    Great guide I hope they sticky it.

  16. #16
    Member ThunderHost's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    A Biosphere near you
    Very nice guide, let's by all means get it stickified.
    "The Hivemind has blinded our sensors"

  17. #17
    By all means let's move it to Tactica Imperialis Subforum

  18. #18
    Member SpArTy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    That place with the things and stuff.
    'Nubz0r' = would have been much better. Other than that I'm sure this guide will make many nublets much happier.
    lol n00b

  19. #19
    bumped - because i believe it is too good to be left to slip away

  20. #20
    Agreed. This is a great guide to playing in general. It would really be nice to get something like this in the tactica.

  21. #21
    random guy
    Should be sticked, good job i learnt something thier aswell.

  22. #22
    Softie. Big One. Danustar's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Standing on the promises
    Me too! Stickaroo ...

  23. #23
    Thanks for the support. Even if this doesn't get stickied I think it's high time the Tactica got some love.

  24. #24
    Very nice guide - I learned a lot.

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    So I was reading this, and it completely passed me by that it was about 40K. I wanted to know who the hell didn't tell me about generators or necrons in Company of Heroes! What is this requisition???

    It was very good, nicely worded!


  26. #26
    Great guide! As a new player it definately showed me a few things. Thanks and keep up the good work!

  27. #27
    Neat guide One thing you might want to mention is upgrading an LP early on/building an early turret to give your harassers a fallback position so they have somewhere to run and hide if the enemy starts getting the upper hand in fights.

  28. #28
    Great guide, should definetly be stickied

  29. #29
    Bumped again - still lots of Noobies asking questions answered in this thread
    Or at least could benefit by reading it!!

  30. #30
    Member ErichTheGraham's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Houston, Texas
    bump- please sticky this?

  31. #31


    Thanks for the great guide silvtown ^____________^

    Lots of learning can be done here..

    Ow. btw another good resource for replays is tons of replays there.. ^_________^

  32. #32

  33. #33
    Good guide though I have trouble understanding who its exactly aimed at - most of it seems like the sort of things people would need to know about when moving into the competitive/casual group that plays 1v1 automatch. But other parts lay down absolute basics such as the different resources and what a LP2 is. Such information is what you expect to hear in the in-game tutorial. I think you could have instead mentioned when is the right time to upgrade your LPs to LP2s, although you did mention that briefly saying "on small maps LP2s are more meaningful". Actually regarding resources I think a lot of us still don't know when the best time is to get global resource upgrades and if/when to invest in a LP3.

    Other than that I like the general coverage, made into a 10 step guide. Perhaps you could have gone into more detail on Cover and Morale, however you did link to the wiki site which gives all the facts on those play aspects I guess.

  34. #34
    wow thanks for the guide.

  35. #35

    Yeah i think this is a brilliant guide, specially for people that maybe have changed from playing QS to Std. Not that im flaming QS, but there is far less mircro in QS games.

    As for the guide, the Hotkeys section is particularly important, as I think this is where I fail the most and really need to integrate hotkeys more rather than the mouse and combing through squads/buildings.

  36. #36
    Chaos players through many iterations of DOW have built raptors as fast as possible and then sent them after the enemy.
    yes, im one of these people as well. just one thing i wanna ask...
    while the raptor rush is going on, whats the best thing to do back at base? i mean specifc build order from there. there's been quite a few different answers for this, just wanna see what suggestions i'd find here. im good enough to be able to multi-task back and forth between my base and the attack, but i just wanna see how i can improve activity back at base while managing raptor rush

  37. #37
    Build some Gens and tech your ass off!

  38. #38
    haha, yeah thats the general idea.... although it does sometimes get delayed by throwing in more LPs... or dont i need much yet?
    Last edited by Mecha_Trueno; 24th Jul 08 at 3:18 PM.

  39. #39

  40. #40
    Bump again (sighs heavily)

  41. #41
    Forum Farseer Akranadas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Brisbane, Australia
    silvtown, nice guide; don't know how I missed it.

    I'll be moving it to the tactica

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts