The Art of The Videogame of War


Professional military advice: When you are under fire by siege weapons in a video game, make an effort to move all of your own ranged units back into an attack formation upon the offending units in projectile activity, so as to ensure that ALL sieging enemy units are chased off and destroyed, and your own territorial collective maintained. Once the protective elements between your units and the enemy’s heavy hitters are reduced, it makes zer0ing in on those big baddies’ positions with melee and ranged enemy-only damage that much easier to commit. If possible, do this by focus-firing down one enemy unit at a time. If this causes overkill, redistribute your attacking units such that only the minimal number of attacks required to bring down a target are used, with the minimum number of units, and the minimum terrain usage in unit placement; ensure that this minimalism results in zero losses. Use this amount of pressure on each unit in your HUD’s unit list. Most of these things have maximum and minimum ranges of effectiveness, that are often rated as such, so please be aware that paranoid thinking and worryworting get you a lot of bonus points for curiosity. That means you have to scout your opponent’s positions, get estimates of technology pathways and unit production and resource gathering potential, and respond appropriately with your own gathering, research, building production, and unit fabrication. Double points if you play with your opponents psyche simulated in your head, knowing, in effect, the outcomes of all responses in the game, and only allowing encounters to take place in which your own actions leave yourself at an advantage and your opponent at a disadvantage.

In a simulated video game of war, you should never retreat when you are surrounded by active shooters, with a wall to your back. Instead, you should try to fight your way out of the surround by attacking in the direction you want to evac in, or by targetting, specifically, the places in which you can do the most damage, stun, or diversion, given the life you have to use. If under fire, never retreat, if you can cause action upon your opposable force whilst it remains in ability and activity of killing you. This does not apply to outrunners, whose specialty is evac.

Most times, to win against a bot or n00b, all you must do is field a diversionary force, usually at usually-undefended expansions (army massing is pretty much the only strategy that anyone uses, precluding the invention of some manner of unit balancing, so as to hold strategic center positions, so you will likely find your opponent with an untouchable main base and several resource extraction sites with nothing going on (unit capping at 200 supply, with some units taking 4 supply a piece)). When the opponent reacts with their entire army because they believe that German Dual Front trash, hit their main base with the rest of your army and withdraw the diversion temporarily. When their entire army comes running to the main base to defend, reposition your mobilized main force with the diversionary force and finish their job for them. At this point, all it should take is one additional production cycle to outmass, and subsequently, outmaneuver your opponent. As always in Blizzard RTS games, you must destroy all of the opponents building projects to deny military production, and destroy all command centers to win the game. This is a common trope in RTS games in general, although some games, like Homeworld and Myth, simplify things in exchange for a more complex terrain representation. This also rarely works in real life, because there is little to no chance that opposing forces began construction and harvesting at the same time, and along designer-balanced, parallel pathways.

As always, design heuristics discovered due to study of warlike activities are directly applicable to other industries, such as city layout, shipping, delivery, resource management, statistics, manufacturing, timing, staffing, and service.

Countless pixels were harmed in the production of this simulation.

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