Heywood’s Battle Tips

These tips are for the moderate to experienced attacker in Forge of Empires that wants to fight through GE Dif IV soon after starting. They are far from perfect or complete. They are to serve as a guideline for swift battle beyond the “auto”, but fall short of mathematical analysis of troop-to-troop reactions. I find that terrain makes the direct troop-to-troop more ineffective than general rules.

1.       Rock, Paper, Scissors, Artillery- There are four major troop types in FoE. Heavy, Light, Fast, and Ranged. Commit this order to memory. Hit for hit Heavy will beat Light, Light will beat Fast, Fast will beat Ranged, and Ranged will beat Heavy. (Support units- rogues, drummers, and standards- will come up later… be patient ya scum this is free info)

a.       Heavy units, armored slow units with a big punch. They kill almost everything in two hits on unaided ground. Pro-take damage slowly except from artillery, have a lot of damage to take, and the deal a lot of damage. Cons- move slowly, almost always get hit first and can be maneuvered into positions where they only get to strike back before dying; also, they are easily outmaneuvered. (Worst case scenario is 50/50 Artillery and Fast Cav where the Artillery picks off enough damage to be single hit killed by the cavalry)

b.       Light Units, fast moving units that deal a lot of damage and can minimize their damage taking and dealing through location. Light units put the hurt to Cavalry units and move quickly enough to minimize damage taken by Artillery. They tend to do the best era to era against multiple types of units. If you don’t run rogues while attacking you will need Light in your mixture. (Who am I kidding, everyone runs rogues)

c.       Fast Units, light armor with a fast strong attack. They kill most things in two hits, either because ranged has low armor and toughness, or Fast because of bonuses. Ranged also are the first solid units to get special abilities. (Take these all the time; the combination of speed and heavy hitting along with occasional ability to be untargeted is a strong combo)

d.       Ranged Units, Units that never hit back… read as terrible; also, that rarely get hit with returning fire. Eventually troop abilities break this rule. If you want to spend hours of memorizing terrain movement costs, shooting distances, and target prioritization then these are the troops for you. *cough, cough Artillery is in this category and some people swear by the early Artillery. If it has enough bonuses it can be devastating, but there are attack builds that can erase them on auto. (even slow moving heavy units will eventually make it and destroy you)

So think of these rock, paper, scissors, and artillery when matching armies. Always check your GE army, both when they exist, and match accordingly. When attacking GvG back out rather than take heavy losses. Look for defense builds with two troop types and select the fastest troop with a strength against one enemy troop and no weakness to the other enemy troop. Remember this pattern for selection: Superiority, Mobility, Durability

e.       Support Troops; Rogues, Drummer Boy, and Color Guard. Forget about the Drummer Boy and Color Guard, though they could have a use in highly technical play. Never use either in conjunction with a rogue. Rogues on the other hand are the fighting players bread and butter. Get a rogue hideout ASAP. The more rogues you have the more GE, GvG, and PvP you can do. If you don’t have at least 80 rogues, you should not try to take a GvG tile alone. (If you can, you are definitely a player that doesn’t need this guide) When attacking your default should be One Regular Unit and Seven Rogues, though sometimes it is good to have two regular units of the same type. Never use a rogue as defense unless you know exactly why you are doing it. I use Rogues as defense, I’ve done the math on my troop speed and average tile distance to other troops, but that is troop and scenario specific.

2.       Rule Breakers

There are lots of things that alter or outright break the rules of combat, and knowing when a neighbor or campaign setting has troops that do this is imperative. The main rule breakers are Great Buildings GB, Troop Abilities, and Tavern Boosts, and Troop Type

a.       Great Building, or GB, do not all give your troops abilities. Some only augment a troops abilities in a certain situation i.e. attacking or defending, while some give innate abilities.

1.       Attacking, Statue of Zeus SoZ, Cathedral of Achen CoA, and Castel del Monte CdM, all give 3% attacking bonus per level up to 10, then the percentages change. The SoZ gives only that boost while the CoA gives coin, and the CdM gives forge points. I suggest leveling all of these though your tile space and forge point generation may dictate when that happens.

2.       Defending- There are several story and quest building that give bonuses to defense or guild boosts. The main defense GBs are St. Basils and Deal Castle. They give 3% bonus for the first 10 levels when defending from attack.

3.       Criticals- The Artic Orangery, if you can get one, is awesome. It has a large footprint, but yields a chance to crit. at 150% damage as well as generate a great amount of fp. If you level this enough it doesn’t matter what you attack with, everything will die. That takes a lot of time and effort though.

4.       Auto Kill- The Kraken, this gives a chance to remove one troop from the defending army before the battle begins.

5.       Troop Generation- Alcatraz, this baby is essential if you want to participate in auto battle or GvG at all. Alcatraz, or Traz, will help you build unattached troops. It selects the troops it builds from the barracks you have built. Most players stay on an Era and farm troops from GE, however some troops are not regular in GE. Rogues usually need Hideouts. If you are lacking the troop you need for an assault, build that barrack, but for the most part just use your Traz to

When Leveling GBs don’t do small swaps unless you play all the time and have amazing fp generation. Find a player to do agreed upon amounts over time and guarantee a contribution place. When trying to gain Blue Prints, BP, don’t donate to people with low level GBs. Find someone with a level 30 or above. Save up 100 fp and add until a spot is locked. This will net you 4-6 prints a time and you’ll get a load of fp and medals with it.

b.       Troop Abilities are varied. They all center around improving or changing the rock, paper, scissors, artillery superiority. Bonuses for terrain type are the first you will see. Then you get the first real bonus with the mounted archer. Speed with an inability to be attacked back. Then abilities like Hide greatly amplify a units ability to get to the best location first. Eventually other units will get abilities which nullify previous unit abilities. Keep tabs on the abilities of your troops as well as the troops one era up and down from your own. These effectively give boosts in attack and defensive capability worth several percentages of GB bonuses. The right troop ability can be worth a lot more than straight attack or defensive capabilities.

c.       Tavern Boost- These are straightforward. Level your tavern to Burgandy and Royal everything of a million chairs first before using these boosts. This will allow you to collect silver quickly. Once you gain tavern quickly, use it to boost your attack power when you need it.

d.       Troop Type- This is crucial for GE advancement and city defense. You will have neighbors from the same age/era that you are in, and GE troops will be maxed by the age/era you are in. Having troops from one, or two, eras past your current level is basically, nay absolutely, cheating. It gives you bonuses, abilities, and changes the rules of the hex mat you fight on. If you have a unit that needs bonuses from a foxhole or trenches then those will be on the map. This drastically reduces the effectiveness of enemy troops. So not only do you gain offense, defense, and abilities the enemy loses them.

·       How to get them- The most common way to get them is through advancing on the campaign map. My advice is to advance to the next map as soon as possible, complete all of the Side Quests. Then complete all of the Story Quests. This will ensure that you are able to cycle your recurring quests for loot and gives you the most advanced troops possible. If you can get troops two eras above you, you will dominate the GE. *Important Note! Always have at least 45 diamonds if fighting with an advanced troop. If you are foolish and it dies without a way to resurrect it, it will be dead forever and you won’t be able to get it back without advancing to the next age through research.

This does have an additional benefit. Most neighbors will not have access to these troops meaning you will take the PvP tower easily. This can be worth thousands of medals a week.

3.       Why we fight. Glory, Glory, and Gl… Treasure.

There are lots of reasons to fight in Forge of Empires, FoE battle is where you prove that your tech advancement method is superior to another players.  FoE, however is a generational game with a lot of moving parts. To keep things for beginners and old hats alike, FoE has incorporated a lot of fighting systems. The farther along you get, the more difficult things become. Until late campaign, you will only ever have 40% of the types of goods needed to advance, because of this you need to trade or fight. If you trade that costs FP, and if you fight it costs troops, unless you fight well. Delayed gratification is a big part of the game. If you invest at the beginning, you can take a lot in the end. The way you invest matters however and I am going to cover the costs of the different treasure mechanics and how to receive them for the cheapest cost pre refined goods eras.

A.      Raiding- Raiding is fun because you get medals if you do it well and those are hard to get early on, and the medal cost of tiles goes up quickly. It can get you anything plunderable. This means that at higher levels only Event buildings, because high level players have GBs instead of housing or goods; resource buildings while present, often are motivated and thus cannot be plundered. An additional reason not to raid is that people will raid you back, the chance to get a BP is reduced, and you may lose troops that could be better spent elsewhere. (That said, anyone with only two troops defending must be raided)

B.      Guild Expeditions- once the Guild Expedition, GE, is released you can fight along a path of increasing difficulty. For goods that relate to the age advancement of the guild members, you can unlock additional levels. The troops on the GE are related to your specific Era and below.

·       Wait for the GE to start after getting new neighbors. Check the tower champs and see if it is worth devoting battles to any one tower for medals. Your first GE are the best to get early era tower points. i.e. one spearman and 7 rogues. This will max your medal count. Do not compete in towers you cannot win unless those are the troops you have.

·       Attack vs. Negotiate- Negotiating is necessary but expensive at the beginning. If you don’t have a composite of 160% attack bonus it will be difficult to get past Dif IV without negotiating. Tactics count for something, but troops and terrain are the law, they can make up for a lack of up to 80% attack bonus. When you know you will negotiate, spend the silver on Extra Turn to negotiate 4 times without diamonds. Whenever choosing how to complete the expedition, weigh possible costs of replacing troops with replacing goods

C.       Guild v. Guild

GvG is a great way to increase notoriety, create alliances, gain bonuses to your guild, and gain Crowns for better guild abilities. If you follow the basic guide of friending people primarily from other guilds, then you can eventually use your alliances in GvG to establish trade relationships inter-guild to feed each other’s resource needs. At it’s heart though GvG is about resource management.

1.       Know When to Attack- Calc, Calculation is the all-powerful god of GvG. What you hold when Calc occurs is how you obtain benefits from GvG. This dictates to some point when people attack, and release tiles. It is possible to use this knowledge to guess when defenses might be needed or weak.

2.       Know Where to Attack- Tiles in GvG are boosted for a variety of reasons. Your guild members may have GB or event building that give a bonus to GvG troops however, the earlier the era the lower the total bonus accessible.  Additionally, proximity to the HQ gives bonuses to defense. Don’t rely on tiles that are landing zones for new guilds.

3.       Know Who to Attack- Normally anyone on the GvG boards can be assumed to have a few players with hundreds of Rogues and an attack bonus of 100%-400%. This means that regardless of who is being attacked, they will lose the tile within ten to 15 minutes. It is rare that a tile can be defended from an attacker.

4.       Know What to Attack- Select the area that you will be attacking carefully. Make sure that you are not breaking alliances, and not going into a fight against allies. Look for areas where guilds are fighting for territory. Get points, but don’t make taking you out too juicy to resist. Make sure that you can move out of the LZ.

5.       Know Why You Are Attacking- Resources. Resources. Resources. All war is resource based. Attack in ways that cause you to spend fewer resources than your opponent. 20 battles or 80 amounts to very similar time investment in time and troops to most players. Players will not usually commit to a fight where they lose more than 2 rogues a turn. This means the defining factor of how long war can be maintained is resource expenditure. If you set up 8 Defending Armies, DAs, in each tile you spend a lot more resources than your opponent. Additionally, as you extend your territory the cost per tile increases. By letting a large enemy bloat itself you can cause a guild to hemorrhage resources and make themselves vulnerable on several fronts.

Another passive benefit of GvG is boosting your PvP tower position. If you just have to have some medals quickly, this can serve as an expensive way to get them.

The Fight!

When fighting in these different situations, you will undoubtedly use different tactics. While there are four different classes of troops, they can be broken down into two groups for reasons of strategy: Melee and Ranged. Within these groups, there are troops that attack early game and late game, either because of the speed of their movement or the distance of their attack. The rule is simple Hit them harder than they hit you. Actually doing so is more complicated. I have set out some strategies for specific scenarios.

A.      GvG- run one troop hold it one turn then auto battle 7 rogues. Don’t choose a troop that will outrun the rogues, or it might die before the rogues get transformed. The easiest and fastest of the strategies. Defense is auto, so only use rogues if you have done the math or are copying someone that has.

B.      PvP- Find anyone with only two troops and hit them mercilessly. (if you are cruel/have Atlantis/ Voyager… anyone with these GBs is going to plunder your neighborhood)

C.        GE and Campaign. The technical battles- It is wise to use a single troop with 7 rogues and in GE you can see the troops you will fight, so tailor the matches to your benefit. I almost always use troops that are strong against ranged and not weak against fast. This makes me vulnerable to light troops, so I kill them first.

·       Divide the enemy into groups- Allow Fast to separate themselves. They will attack rogues and take damage. Use the range of the converted rogues to kill the light troops and the remaining rogues to kill the Fast troops. Eliminate the Ranged with all the troops; this can usually be auto.

·       Attack what hurts you most- Destroy the things most dangerous to you. Try not to get into fights that take more than three hits to kill any given troop. Your troops have 10 points of damage; you should leave only things that take 1 or 2 points away per attack.

·       Don’t isolate your troops- Never run a rogue or troop up into a position where more than one troop can only target them. This is the best way to ensure casualties on your side. It is much better to wait until you can hit enemy troops in a way that minimizes how many times they deal damage.

·       Define the Ground- There are some eras which change the roles of troops i.e melee troops get range attacks, and some eras that even change the movement values of the tiles as well as the obstacles. The eras just prior to these can be pivotal to your GE. The troops they send at you have clear weaknesses to the next era's troops as well as less hexes that benefit them. If you can, always have some troops from eras advanced to your own.

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