Company of Heroes 2: The Germans

Company of Heroes 2

It is still very early into the game and I have a very limited number of troops at the front. On top of that a Blizzard is coming. If you play your cards wrong at the start of the game you could very well lose it all.

Special Units

Below are some of the Special Units I had the opportunity of playing with, and my thoughts on them. These are normally only available through Commander Abilities, and cannot be ordered to the field in any other way.

Command Tank – The Command Tank is a Panzer IV with only two machine guns and a “Stubby” Main Gun. In simple terms, the Command tank is inferior, in combat, to the Panzer IV, both against infantry and tanks. It’s main purpose is to provide “buffs” to units in the same territory it is. However, the Command tank only provides these bonuses if both it and friendly units (Infantry and Tanks) are present in the same zone, controlled by your team. In that sense the Command Tank is, mainly, a Defensive unit, since it cannot help in the attack with any specific ability. It does not even have to take part in the combat itself. With its higher cost, and weaker combat abilities you should use it in the Support Role, rather than the Spearhead.

Elefant – The Soviet SU-85 feels inadequate all of a sudden… Well, alright, not exactly. The Elefant is a very powerful Tank Hunter. It is tough, it is strong and it is very, very dangerous. Unfortunately, it is not indestructible, and it is very big. In short, it might be big, but it’s also a big target. Furthermore, as I had the pleasure to discover when playing as the Soviets, a single T-34, slamming into the Elefant with Ramming Speed will disable its gun and engine. Since it lacks the machine gun power of other tanks it becomes almost completely defenseless. As such, keep it further back, and only deploy it to the front when it is necessary.

Artillery – German Artillery is very similar to the Soviet Howitzer. It’s big and it shoots over very long distances. Two artillery guns are normally enough to make any Soviet Commander turn around and flee. Even though they cannot move you can deploy them all the way back in your base and they will still be able to fire at the front line. At the same time direct hits from your Artillery guns can take out enemy tanks of any type. The enemy might have time to flee, but they will still be damaged.

Mortar Half-track – The Mortar Half-track is better protected than your ordinary Mortar Crew, and it can use Incendiary Mortar rounds, making the battlefield a very dangerous place for enemy infantry. It is not that expensive, and with the added mobility and protection (as well as the long firing range) you can safely bomb the enemy and change your position, instantly.

“Eastern Troops” – Ostruppen may be obtained through the use of Relief Infantry ability. Up to six infantry squads that die while the ability is active will be exchanged for Ostruppen. On one hand you might think, “Yay! Fresh troops!” while in fact you should be asking yourself the question, “WHY?!”. Ostruppen are very weak. They appear to be closer to the level of Grenadiers than Pioneers, but they are by no means good. They lack any special abilities and have no upgrades. In other words, you just spent 200 Ammo to obtain 0-6 below-average infantry squads. To be honest, I only used the ability once, and in order for it to pay-off I had to sacrifice three of my Grenadier squads.

In the end, why would you ever use this ability/get these troops? The option does exist that you are getting butchered, and you have a surplus of ammo, that happens. You may obtain a few Ostruppen squads, and then use them to man HMGs, Pak 40s or Mortars, perhaps fortify some structures or send them as aid to your allies. The 200 Ammo could be used in better ways though, such as using Sector Artillery (if you have enough CPs to use it). The single Sector Artillery could kill way more enemies than the Ostruppen ever could, especially if it is tanks we are talking about.

Tips and Strategy

Now comes the, somewhat, most difficult part of this Guide, the list of different Strategies, observations and “tests” I made in order to allow you to analyze for yourself, and thus better benefit you when you play as the Germans. While I will not be able to tell you absolutely everything I hope you will still be able to learn something from it.

How to start the game?

When you first begin your battle a lot of people would say that your initial choice of troops is the most important element of any game. After all, it will influence what are your starting positions, and whether you can hold them. What i normally do, with the Germans is build units in the following order: Grenadiers, HMG, Grenadiers. Then, depending on the map and overall situation I might build a Mortar, but I will only deploy the Mortar to the area where the HMG is present. Mortars on their own will not be able to stop enemy troops, and they need to work together with an HMG to be fully effective.

When it comes to moving troops I normally send the Grenadiers and any support teams to the front straight away. Once the Pioneers built the basic Infantry Building in the base they will capture the basic resource points behind the front line, while the Grenadiers/HMG secure the front and hold it. On the “Micro” level I usually try to put my troops slightly “ahead” of the point I am capturing, to negate the enemy any movement into the point. Furthermore, if there is a crucial VP or Fuel Point I will have a Grenadier Squad up front, and then the HMG some distance back. This is so that the enemy will not see the HMG straight away, and once I start pulling my Grenadiers back the enemy might just fall into the HMG fire. Since it takes only two bursts to completely pin the enemy my Grenadiers can then try to finish the enemy off.

The use of buildings is also important, since they can provide even better cover than solid green cover. However, I usually hide the HMG in buildings overlooking the points I am holding (or putting them in green cover). I will put Grenadiers into buildings only when it is apparent that there are a lot of buildings in the area, and if I do not capture and fortify them then the enemy could, and during the early game I might not have the resources to purchase a flamethrower to force them out.

Sometimes if a position was clearly “held”, and the enemy was unable to force me off it I would construct a Medical Bunker. This is for one simple reason, if the enemy managed to wound my troops I might have to send them back to base to recover. With a Medical Bunker near the front I can heal my troops fully and then send them back to their positions. Speaking of which, never send all your troops to heal, at the same time. Somebody should always stay at the front and keep watch. If you leave the front undefended enemy troops could take your positions, leaving you at a disadvantage.

Command Outposts might also be useful, and there is no reason why you should not build HMG bunkers to cover your flanks, however, the more bunkers you build the more defensively you play. The resources you invest in bunkers and upgrades could be used on troops and their own upgrades (such as LMGs for Grenadiers). If you manage to route the enemy “starting” force you should try to send your grenadiers and pioneers to capture some enemy territory. This will act as a distraction for the enemy, and it will also give you a clear warning of when the enemy is advancing.

Now, after some time you will have two choices, when it comes to “Anti-Vehicle” tactics. Panzer greandiers are the most expensive option, both in terms of manpower and ammo. Their Panzerschrecks will be deadly against most tanks and vehicles, and since they can move rapidly you could take out enemy units from the safety of green cover. However, Panzer grenadiers might be lost quickly to enemy artillery/mass unit tactics, so be sure to pull them back if things get bad. Your second option is the Pak 40. In some ways this is “Overkill”, against early enemy vehicles, but Overkill might be just the thing you need. The problem is that most maps are so open that you would need at least two Paks to watch an area fully, so if you do decide to use a Pak you must put Grenadiers further toward the enemy, so that you can react early enough and reposition your Pak where it is needed. The middle “ground” or perhaps the cheapest option out of all these is the Armored Car. It costs only 80 Manpower and 20 Fuel and its 2cm Cannon upgrade costs 70 Ammo. It is a weakly armored and has little health but the 2cm cannon can destroy Infantry (if used safely from medium distance) and it most certainly can shoot down enemy light vehicles, such as half-tracks and the SU-76. The problem with the Armored Car is that it is very easy to destroy, so you have to use it very carefully, and repair it as soon as it gets damaged.

Out of those three options the Panzer Grenadiers and the Pak 40 will be useful in the more distant future when the enemy deploys tanks or the SU-85. However, if you need a somewhat cheaper alternative, or if the enemy is heavily abusing Snipers, then the Armored Car is the more sensible option (one time an enemy deployed 3 Sniper Squads to haunt my HMGs and Grenadiers. A single Armored Car kept them at bay for most of the battle).

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About The Author

Aleksander "WriterX" Bielski
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Student of Psychology, he was identified as a Nut-Job even before he started the course. Having done some small work as a Modder for a number of titles, and worked as a Game Designer part-time, Alex now writes in third person. As Co-Owner and Editor of AlterGamer.com he aims high, while being armed only with a sling. In the future, he hopes to become a fully qualified Newspaper Editor, and purchase Google.

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