So, I just joined, and my win rate is a LOT lower than I thought it would be. I was hoping someone can give me tips on what I'm doing wrong, and why what works on the real game board isn't working here.
- When the game starts, I assess the board, and select an area where I have a high concentration of troops already. I look at defense and choke points ,and how many ways I can be attacked while retaining that continent bonus. (EX: When playing classic, if I get troops in Alaska, NYC, LA, and Havana to start, that's three defense points to hold the entire country. If I wind up with 3 locations in Asia, that's a lot more.)
- Focus down on this area. Turn one, capture the entire country, get the country bonus, and turtle down. Place troops at the defense points based on what's nearby. (EX: Say I take North America in the above example. Green has 1 troop in Reykjavik, and the nearest stack is in Madrid. Russia is still neutral, and Blue has 15 troops stacked on Bogota. I stick about 2/3's of my troops on Mexico City, and split the rest between Greenland and Alaska.
- Weather the oncoming storm of other players.
- Pick a direction, and drive in it. Goal by goal, slowly advancing the offensive line based on defensive choke points, focusing on continent bonuses. (EX: In the above example, from there I'd likely advance through South America. This removes one choke point and adds two, whereas advancing east would add 4 - 5.)
- As we get later in the game, focus on elimination. If there is a weak player near by, put extra troops (a portion, not an entire deployment) near them, and take over what little they have left to grab their spoils. Reinforce back to the choke point I left, leaving all the countries I just took at 1 troop, letting someone else eat them up.
- Attack weak points first, and keep all entrances to my territory at even numbers of troops. (EX: I have 60 troops total, and I own North America. 20 on Alaska, 20 on Greenland, 20 on Mexico City, end of story.) Build all defensive points evenly, and if a new defensive point is taken, raise it to match all others as quickly as possible. All countries that AREN'T defensive points have one troop on them without exception, and that's just because I have to. (I'd rather have 30 on Alaska than 10 each on Alaska, Edmonton, and Vancouver. In scenario 1, they have to go through 30 troops to get anywhere. In scenario 2, they can break into the "fleshy middle" by going through 20 instead, a disadvantage. If they break into the "fleshy middle", the country is lost anyways, unless spoils are about to be dropped.)
- If a country bonus is broken, take it back immediately. Defensive lines are non-negotiable. Unless the situation is such a disadvantage I can't take it back and defend it again, I take it back as priority number one. If it is that type of disadvantage, I retreat to the next chokepoint. (EX: I lose South America to Blue, and Blue has 40 troops in Sao Paulo to my 10 between Bogota and Lima combined. Fall both of those back to Mexico City, putting 1 in each Bogota and Lima, whereas there are now 25 - 30 in Mexico City, defending North America.
- If losing, focus on breaking continent bonuses, or if possible eliminating another player.
Now, even doing this... I've only won 18% of games. Why isn't this working? I can't understand. It's a middle ground between offense and defense, it's a middle ground between aggressive and conservative, and yet I lose nearly every time. Any thoughts on how to make it better?