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is blitzin the only way to win for multiplayer?

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22 months ago

I like Zero K as i liked "total_lation" but it would seem in both games, if you want to win at this game you gotta blitz from the start.

I just started getting into multiplayer and i like the Co Op but when it comes to playing against actual players. I got nothing. and what i hear all the time is "you gots ta blitz!"

Is there other stratagies that work?
+0 / -0

22 months ago
Depends on what you mean by "blitzin". You don't have to build up a raider army and trash the map every game (in fact I wouldn't recommend it if you aren't confident in your micro skills), you can start out building riot and skirmisher units, and use them to protect constructors as they expand across the map, supplementing that expansion with defenses as you go. If your opponent tries raiding you out, but you have your riots and some radar to see things coming, you can basically do a defensive push to gain territory.

That being said, because resources in this game are spread across the map, and because there isn't a huge cost to acquiring them (apart from any costs you choose to pay to help defend them), spreading across the map quickly is important, you just don't necessarily have to be highly aggressive with your army in the process.
+1 / -0
Could you define blitzin and send some replays? I can guess what the term means but it is not adequate for the nuance that may be required. If blitzin means spending all your metal on raiders and pumping raiders for the entire game then the answer is 'no'. If blitzin means moving out of your base within the first two minutes then the answer is 'yes'. At least in 1v1. I don't think anyone has a good grasp of teamgame strategy as it applies to individual players. It is likely that both players don't necessarily need to move out quickly in a 2v2.
+0 / -0
Yes, you absolutely have to be aggressive to get ahead because territory is income. Income means units and units are necessary for victory.

You usually want to use raiders to put pressure on your opponent from the outset so that you can deny them access to as much of the map as possible. This is what territorial control actually is - how much of the map have you made too dangerous for your opponent to reach? The metal extractors come after. Doing so maximises your own income and minimises theirs. This means you have more units and they have fewer which maximises your chance of success.

However, depending on the matchup, you may not even need to fire a shot. If you just have your guys close enough to threaten constructors, that might work by itself as they have to protect their own cons, which means more resources being diverted from their expansion.

You absolutely don't want to lean so heavily on military units that you neglect economy. One of the weaknesses of my game in the past was focussing so much on the front line that I forgot about energy and metal production. A player able to resist my early pressure could then push me back with raw economic power, no matter how fancy my micro.

You also absolutely do not want to squander your early units. You will be feeding your opponent metal (as they can reclaim them), which may offset any raw economic advantage you might have.

Since I take it "blitz" doesn't mean finding the optimal balance of military force and economic investment, you do not need to blitz to win. In fact you need a balanced strategy. That's hard to master, which is why most of us have had to put in a great deal of practice to get where we are.

It does feel painful as newbie to be on the receiving end of that, and it can look like you're just being rushed, but if you watch the replay, you will invariably find there is a lot more going on that you couldn't see when playing.
+2 / -0

22 months ago
If "not blitzin" means "staying on your few starting mexes while constructing your base for the first five to ten minutes of the game and not sending out units to harass and prevent the enemy's expansion or at least to defend your own constructors while expanding beyond your few starting mexes" then yes, you have to blitz.

But no, you don't have to immediately build only fast attack units and send them all directly to the enemy's base. Far from it.

A lot of players seem to think that time is not an important factor in a real-time strategy game, and so they take all the time in the world to build up a perfect little base in their tiny corner of the map. In Zero-K this means that you've conceded the rest of the map to your opponent, who will use the resources they've gained from owning so much more territory than you to crush you.

+1 / -0
22 months ago
First off, thank you for the replies and comments.

What i mean by blitzin is how players rush out and about all over the map and mainly fight with mobs of bots and leave little to any to defense. On the few multiplayer matches i have played on, I see commanders make lots and lots of units and advance and in their path they may leave a lotus or two and some pickets. On the multiplayer matches i spectated it would seem everyone mainly uses units and rushes after one another. I hardly see any kind of entrenchment going on. rarely do i see the big guns come out to play. but like i said i'm rather new.

On the Co Op matches I've played nothing lasted longer that 20 minutes(maybe because how good the players are or because of the map) And again no entrenchment was had, unless somebody messed up and fell back to me(i'm usually the turtle) but that's happened like twice since i found Zero K.

It would seem in this player's opinion(and i am no where a vet in this) over half of the units and structures in this game are not used.

I Would like to have an item or a set of items that one could equip his commander for a defensive or offensive outlook(like an item which makes all units/structures 10% more damage absorbing/hp while at the same time 10% weaker damage output and vice versa for the offensive outlook) and like give the commander a limit of 5 of these for his suit.

But i am really too new here to give advice. Except please change the Submit post and Post comment tabs. i have had to re write this as i hit Post comment in stead of Submit post.
+0 / -0

22 months ago
What i mean by blitzin is how players rush out and about all over the map and mainly fight with mobs of bots and leave little to any to defense. On the few multiplayer matches i have played on, I see commanders make lots and lots of units and advance and in their path they may leave a lotus or two and some pickets. On the multiplayer matches i spectated it would seem everyone mainly uses units and rushes after one another.

That is very much the way Zero-K plays. Aggressive playstyles are common, and heavily defensive playstyles are rare among experienced players. It's easier to succeed while being aggressive, and much harder to succeed (although not impossible!) while being defensive.

Zero-K's game design leads to these results. Spending your metal on defenses in your base means you have little metal to spend on mobile units. That means that the enemy's mobile units will be able to take control of all the territory outside of your base, because they'll overpower the few mobile units you send there. The enemy will have more territory, which means more metal spots and mexes, which means a higher income. And although in general the same amount of metal spent in static defenses can hold off the same amount of metal spent in mobile units, before long the enemy's better income will allow them to outspend you by very large amounts. There are many ways to break open a turtle, and there's a pretty good chance your enemy will do exactly that if you stay in your corner and turtle up.

Most Zero-K games are a race to control the middle ground by showing up firstest with the mostest. To do that, you need units, not defenses, and you need them now, not later.

rarely do i see the big guns come out to play .. It would seem in this player's opinion(and i am no where a vet in this) over half of the units and structures in this game are not used.

That's mostly a matter of a) the length of time the game goes on and b) how much metal is provided by the map. Free-For-All games tend to run much longer because it's often a strategic mistake to attack, because that makes both you and your target worse off than the rest of your opponents; accordingly, FFA players will build up defenses and build up their economy inside their fortress until they can pull out the REALLY big guns. But in 1v1 duels, about the biggest thing you'll see is a Dante or Scorpion, and even then only rarely. Duels can be over in five minutes if the losing player makes a mistake or is outclassed and has the skill to realize he's lost and has the decency to resign when he knows it. Large team games will often get to nukes, but not always, and rarely anything larger.

But in all of these cases - FFA, duels, or team games - it's almost always a mistake to start making a "big gun" early on. You simply won't have the economy for it. While you're spending four minutes building a Dante on 15 m/s, you're making nothing else, and your enemy is taking all the territory and all the income and will destroy you before your Dante finishes. Games have a pacing; as time passes, economies grow larger, and can support building the larger units. Inexperienced players try to build big units before they can be supported, and thereby simply waste all the metal they're putting into the unit that could have been more usefully and profitably spent on other things in the meantime.
+1 / -0
What you're calling blitzing really is the game of fighting for territory from the outset then, which very much is the essence of the game. More territory means more metal extractors, which means more income from which, if you need to, you can build the heavy units of the late game.

A 1v1 or small team game usually plays out in several phases (in any of which victory is possible).

The first stage is the raider phase. This cannot be other than an open, fluid phase because nobody has staked out any territorial claims yet (as the game has just started). It's about scouting your opponent, keeping him away from your vulnerable areas and only then about killing units.

There are actually three resources in this game, metal, energy and as USrankCrazyEddie pointed out, time. A kill is only really valuable if it costs your opponent time to rectify. If I destroy your early expansion constructor, you not only lose the metal you invested in it, but also the time it takes to build another one and get it back out doing the job the original con was supposed to be doing. This is how raiders give me an advantage to press home.

By its end, the raider phase will have decided who holds what territory (and so who can start exploiting it). It might be the case that, due to a massive difference in skill and/or dumb luck (e.g. Multiplayer B737550 2 on Trojan Hills v05) one side gains such a big advantage that they can quickly end the game. Most of the time, neither side will have such a decisive advantage and the game will move on to the mid-game.

In the mid game, each side consolidates control over their outlying territory, which might include starting to build up more serious fortifications. Their economies will now be able to sustain production of heavier, more expensive units. With these, a more attritional game will start, where both sides probe for weak points to exploit (that weak point might even be their field army, depending on your respective compositions). Every mex you take provides more fuel for your war machine until eventually, you reach a tipping point and your opponent can no longer sustain a fight against you. At that point victory is just a matter of time (and trying not to do something stupid that throws the game).

You reach the late game if neither side can gain that attritional advantage. Your success in holding ground to this point provides the foundation on which to build your end game play. You should have linked up your holdings in an overdrive grid which is perhaps benefitting from the vast energy output of advanced geothermal or singularity reactors. With your advanced late game economy, you can create a vast field army, build that nuke silo or even a Zenith or Disco.

It is quite rare in small games for the late game to be reached. Usually one side makes a fatal mistake before then.

You do see it more in large team games (8v8+) which also tend to do away with the raider phase simply because they're more crowded, which means its harder to cost effectively deprive your opponents of time - you might take out one guy's constructor, but if the guy next to him has one nearby that survives, it can continue the interrupted work much sooner, and of course it's much easier to have evenly matched sides with a larger pool of players.

I've talked in pretty abstract terms so far, but consider these thoughts in particular:

1) Defences are not there to protect you. If you need substantial fortification in your base, you've probably already lost.
1 a) Yes, that goes for chicken defence too - your defences should be creating a killing field from which you can harvest resources.
1 b) Partial exception: if, on account of having scouted your opponent you've learned they're playing scythes more investment is justified. The point of scythes is to stab you in the back, so make your back uninviting - but don't go overboard. You still need a front.

2) Defences are there to enforce your claim to territory. Build them to control choke points, deter raiders from outlying resources or to tip the balance of power at the front in your favour.

3) Your goal in game isn't to build a Detriment or a big base. Your goal is victory. You and your opponent have exactly the same starting choices and resources. You must deprive them of theirs while expanding yours.

4) "Rushing after the other guy" is a massive over simplification. The raiding phase is the most tactical part of the game. You have limited resources, limited information about your opponent and need to make tough choices on how best to use them.
+3 / -0

22 months ago
it's the only way to get all those presents delivered, you need the other 7 reindeer too
+1 / -0
22 months ago
So then the only real play style is what all of you have described.

thank you all for the input.
+0 / -0

22 months ago
Many playstyles are possible but you will find some of them substantially more *challenging*. Feel free to experiment, both with different playstyles and with different types of games.
+0 / -0
It would seem in this player's opinion(and i am no where a vet in this) over half of the units and structures in this game are not used.
Not seeing the value in defenses seems to be a common phase that people pass through while learning the game. From where I am sitting defenses are very powerful, especially Stinger. The fact that people plop down Lotus and Picket while expanding shows integral defenses are to the game, as they could easily skip defenses entirely. Here are some things that are good to know when using defenses:
  • Defense is only as useful as what it protects. Defense in your main base is not that useful because it leaves most of your economy vulnerable. Defenses between your and your opponents bases defend everything behind them by blocking a path.
  • Efficiently making forwards defenses requires mastery of constructor logistics. You need to make enough constructors and move them around your territory without much wasted walking time.
  • Defenses are vulnerable while under construction so learn how to use priorities and multiple constructors.
  • Defenses are a force multiplier for units. Having defenses in an area makes small armies able to beat back larger ones.
  • Defenses can often be killed or circumvented when left unsupported. The presence of some units makes defenses cover more ground or be much more effective.
  • If you don't pressure your opponent then they will just make economy and eventually overwhelm you. Some form of attacking/prodding your opponent is still required.
  • Newton, Faraday, and Gauss have more niche uses. They are still highly valuable but, if you are just starting out, then learning Lotus, Stardust, Stinger is a good place to start.
  • Desolator, Lucifer, and Cerberus are strider-level defenses. If a Dante would not be appropriate then there is a good chance these are not appropriate either.
  • The best defenses project power by making it awkward for your opponent to move around the map. Defenses are a complete waste if they do not hinder your opponents access to parts of the map that they may reasonably want to access.
Just as units are not designed to be uniformly useful at all stages of the game, the types of defenses you should build will change over the course of a game. You should start by making a Minotaur about as often as you should start with a Stinger in your base. In my experience most units see use in Zero-K.

Just to calibrate us, do you call this game blitzin: http://zero-k.info/Battles/Detail/741097
+2 / -0

22 months ago
You absolutely have to expand as quick and as far as possible theres no question about that however you dont need to rush a big army, you can get by in the first 5 minutes with no units at all if you just spam turrets and expand.

Once the enemy has got artillery for your turrets though thats when youll need to make some units.

I do this tactic a lot especially with tanks because later in the game I can make emissaries to sit behind turrets and counter the enemy artillery.
+0 / -0

22 months ago
"you can make d-fence or you can play the game"
+0 / -0

22 months ago
I just made a point of watching your last multiplayer game: Multiplayer B740728 10 on Highway 95 v5

I wanted to see how you played. Since you've made this thread in the first place, I take it you're OK with feedback.

Your opposite number is GRrankabinitio who interestingly appears to be a player of similar experience to yourself which I think makes this a particularly good game to review.

First choice: factory.

You choose spider, an excellent choice for the terrain you're fighting in, and in fact usually a better choice than your opponent's tanks. He's confined to the low ground unless he terraforms extensively, whereas you can roam freely over the hills... if you choose to.

You pop your factory, start upgrading your commander and build 2 caretakers before you even build energy (you make your first solar at about 1 min 30 in). The caretakers were premature. They do not magically increase your build rate, they cost metal and energy just like factories, so if you have none to spare, you will not build any faster.

You do not build any mobile units until about 3 minutes in when you make a few recluses. You start fortifying your base which is what I expected from your comments here, even though your opponent hasn't even tried to poke you.

You do not start expanding until about the 4 minute mark when you finally move your commander out of the base. To your credit, you use the recluses to cover him. You have a close shave with your moderately upgraded commander just before the 8 minute mark but are able to escape in the nick of time (and in the process destroy his artillery piece, which was a useful kill).

For the first time in the game you actually respond to the situation you are faced with and build a stinger at the forward point. This is your first and only strategic use of a turret and it is a good move, but by this point you've spent over 3000 metal on base defences. Your opponent has 4500 metal of tanks and is building his offensive strength all the time vs about 1400 metal of recluses which are not being reinforced.

Those are interesting numbers aren't they? You and your opponent could have had equal resources deployed on the front, if, instead of building turrets in your base, you either built mobile units to take him on - or forward turrets to work as force multipliers for your smaller mobile forces.

Eventually of course, the inevitable happens. Your opponent pushes through your weak front, destroying your commander in the process. You fall back to your corner and dig in further. He ignores you, having identified you are not a threat, and deploys his tanks against your allies flank, tipping the scales decisively against your allies, who until that point had actually been fighting hard to hold off a strong shield ball, while your other allies in the south of the map had actually defeated their opponents and were menacing the core base of the opposition.

This was an interesting game to watch despite the apparent disparity in victory chances, because it was the interaction of two of the least practiced players that decided it - you and GRrankabinitio. You handicapped yourself by bulding turrets in your base, which meant, in an otherwise closely matched game you handicapped your team.

Consider this: that forward stinger of yours won the veterency award. That means it was the most efficiently spent metal in the game. Imagine you had spent more metal there. You could have defeated or deterred your opponent's attack, or at least, simply by controlling that NE part of the map, forced him to turn to face you. Any of those outcomes would mean he would not have been able to join his strength to the attack on the core of your base - which meant they could have held out longer, enabling the southern flank to capitalise on its territorial control and perhaps rip through the opposing middle.

Turrets obey the first rule of real estate. Location, location, location.

You can play a game of turrets and entrenchment and, as GBrank[Fx]Drone points out, the turret and artillery combination done well is a horror to fight against, but to do so, you need to learn what territory is valuable and what is not. Having done that, you need to do whatever you can to make sure you get it.
+7 / -0

22 months ago
Some things to bear in mind:

  • Your base is probably a lot less valuable than you think. It has your factory, some energy, and a few metal spots. Early on it needs to be protected because it's all you have. But factories and energy can be rebuilt anywhere, and there are a lot more metal spots outside your base than in it.
  • Territory is probably a lot more valuable than you realize. For one thing, it has metal spots; taking territory is how you increase your income. But also, taking territory gives you map control. Map control is the ability to see what is happening within and near your territory and to respond to it with your forces. Controlling a large territory is more important for defending your base than building defenses in your base is. Base defenses can always be overcome by a prepared enemy; by contrast, map control allows you to determine the circumstances of the engagement. You choose the location of the battle, the composition of your forces, and the tactics to be employed. In a base defense all of those are chosen by your enemy.

These two things together mean that you should invest less in establishing and defending your base, and invest more in acquiring and defending your territory.
+0 / -0

22 months ago
I am sorry but this jumped into my mind and now i have to get rid out of it and there's only one way which is to post it here.

Blitz-in is only the finishing blow. But what allows is is the blitz-out.
+0 / -0