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Survival Guide - Dust Settles: Defending

Table of Contents:

I. Purpose
II. Defensive Structures
III. Army as Home Defense
   A. Formation
IV. Training Militia
V. Weapons, Vehicles, Aircraft, and Mechs
   A. Close Combat
   B. Ranged Fire
   C. Heavy Weapons
   D. Ground Vehicles
   E. Light Aircraft
   F. Battle Mechs
VI. Guard Posts
VII. Improvements
VIII. Limitations


Your Defense page is where you will set up all of your defensive commands and build all of your defensive structures. You will need to make sure that you are prepared for both full-out military attacks and secret special ops raids. Here you can train militia, set up defensive formation orders, assign weapons for defense, assign defensive structures for construction, and keep an eye on your guard post coverage.

You should have a good defense, because if your camp is attacked, you can win victory score by defeating them. You will also lose a lot of score by not defending your camp at all, more in fact, than if your camp is just beaten in battle. Now, if you are attacked and that attack leaves your defenses decimated, you will not receive the extra negative score associated with leaving your camp undefended as long as you are not currently logged in and as long as you haven't logged in since the attack without revamping your defenses. Remember, your army won't use any weapons to defend your camp if you haven't assigned them manually.

Beyond gaining a negative victory score if you don't defend your camp or if you lose to an attacking army, you will lose storage huts, population, guard posts, and resources. The camps surrounding you won't completely destroy you in one shot, but each camp has the possibility of attacking you a total of 9 times (3 army, 3 air, and 3 special ops) in one 24 hour period. This can leave you with some serious deficits and set you back severely, making it hard to maintain a high rank.

Your defenses include army and militia against an attacking army, army in fighters and militia in defensive structures against attacking bombers, and militia, guard posts, and light posts against special ops raids. This page primarily deals with militia training and defenses against army attacks, though your guard post needs are briefly discussed.

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Defensive Structures:

Defensive Structures Assignment Tools

Defensive structures are very useful to add an extra layer of defense to your troops and camp. From structures that just increase your defense, like pillboxes or trenches, to structures that will actually attack incoming forces, like anti-tank cannons and AA guns, these structures provide you a boost to your total defenses and will actively fire upon incoming attackers when appropriate.

You will build these structures using the tools on your Defense page. Up to 75% of your militia can be assigned to construction at any given time. If that is not enough to construct any of the structures assigned, they will do no work on your defenses for that turn. Use the training options shown above these tools to get more.

If you hit a point where your militia would construct more in a day than you are allowed, you can limit the number of militia that will work on these structures. All you need to do is type in the number of militia you want assigned for defensive construction and click "Assign Limite to Militia Working!" Remember, typing 0 in this text box and clicking the assignment button will set NO LIMIT leaving you at your initial 75% possible, not stop construction.

Defensive Structure

This table, displayed below your construction assignment options will show you some basic statistics about each of the defensive structures. Above the table you can find out how many you can build based on your circumference. In the table you can find out how much defense is provided by each individual structure, how much damage the structure can deal, what level and type of research you need to open the ability to build that structure, and how many units of that structure type you own.

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Army as Home Defense:

Your first line of defense against any invading force will be any army that you have available in your camp when you are attacked. Depending on the weapons, vehicles, and aircraft you assign as defense and the formation you use when you are attacked, you could have a great advantage against an invading force. You must assign these weapons yourself or your military units will fight unarmed.

If you have sent out a group of army to attack another camp and you are attacked while they are gone, you will only have the remaining army to defend your camp against that attacking camp. The best thing to do is launch an attack when you will be able to end all six of the turns needed to attack a camp and have your army return home quickly.

As with any attack you send against another camp, your army's competency will have an effect on your battle. You will have better results defending your camp the higher your competency is.

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Defense Page Defensive Formation Orders

Your defensive formation will make a difference in the effectiveness of an army's assault against your camp. You will start the game with the ability to set your camp in the Forward Concentration formation, but as your Military Tactics research increases, you will be able to set other formations with their own strengths and weaknesses. Each formation has its own strengths and weaknesses against different attack formations, making formation choice very important.

Defensive Formation Orders End Turn Reminder

Whenever you reset your formation orders by selecting the new orders from the drop down box and clicking Submit, you will be reminded that you must end a turn for these new orders to go into effect. You army needs time to reorganize and reset all of their normal rounds to these new orders.

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Forward Concentration:

This is the basic defensive formation that your army will start with. This formation provides you a decent stand-by since it has no real disadvantage against any attack formation. On the other hand, it has no specific advantage against any formation, so you will never receive any sort of attack bonus.

When this defensive formation is chosen, your troops will line up along the front of your camp, ready to begin firing as soon as the opposing forces are in range. Your troops will remain at their posts in front of your camp as the other troops move forward until one of you wins. This will provide you with a fairly standard, even defense against all attack styles. You will still be flanked, but you will have the camp's walls close behind your back, providing you a slight defense since you will see the flanking army coming before you would if you were in the open field. You will also be concentrated in one area as a ranged attack occurs, keeping your forces from being picked off one-by-one. Once again, if you are being severely beaten by a Ranged Fire Primary attack, your army will make a forward charge to try to mitigate some losses.

Distributed Defense:

Once your Military Tactics research has reached at least 10, you will be able to use this defensive formation. It has the advantage over a Flanking Maneuver and a disadvantage against the Ranged Fire Primary attack formation.

When your army is set to Distributed Defense, it will remain evenly distributed around your camp's walls ready to stand their ground and defend your camp from all sides. As soon as the attacking army comes into firing range, your troops will begin firing. They will stay put, though, unless the attacking army is severely beating you, then your troops will make a final-stand style charge forward as a last attempt to defeat the invading force. This will not mitigate the attacker's advantage provided by a Ranged Fire Primary formation, though. This defensive formation has an attack advantage against a Flanking Maneuver since your army will be able to see the army coming from all sides. This formation has a disadvantage against the Ranged Fire Primary formation since your people will primarily stay put while they sit back and fire.

Pro-Active Defense:

You will be able to set this defensive formation when your Military Tactics research reaches 30 or above. This formation has a distinct advantage against a Ranged Fire Primary attack formation, yet has a severe disadvantage against a Flanking Maneuver.

In this formation, you troops will begin at your front wall, ready to meet the defenders and begin firing as soon as the attacking forces are within range. They will move forward with each volley, just like the attacking troops will (in most formations at least), until they meet the attacking forces. This will provide you a bonus against the Ranged Fire Primary attack since they are expecting to merely sit back and fire at you from a distance. You will be at a disadvantage, though, against a Flanking Maneuver since they will be able to sneak up behind you very effectively.

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Training Militia:

Defense Page Militia Information

Your second line of defense against an invading force will be your militia. These mildly trained civilians will also be one of your main defenses against invading special ops attacks. You will train militia through the Defense page by entering the number of people you want to train in the text box under "Train". Your only limit to training militia will be the number of available people that you have. You can train as many militia as you want at a time, just remember that once these people are trained as militia, they cannot be used for any other purpose in your camp and must be fed one more unit of food apiece than your current rations. If you need to you can relieve your militia using the text box in the table beside the Train box.

Militia Training Queue, No Trainees
Militia Training Queue, 125 in Training

Below the militia information and train/relieve boxes, you will see the Militia training queue. When you have no militia in training, you will see a table like that in the first image. Once you have assigned militia for training, you will see a table similar to the one below, reminding you how many you have assigned for training and how much longer they have before their training is over. Your people only have to train for 3 days to become militia since they are only really learning some basics about using close combat weaponry and certain things to look for to guard the camp against special ops attacks. You can cancel this training at any time during the three days, but you will have to start their training over if you want to reassign them.

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Weapons, Vehicles, Aircraft, and Mechs:

Defense Page Weapons Assignment

An army that attacks you is usually going to be armed to some extent. You should have some weapons, vehicles, aircraft, and mechs (if possible) assigned for your army to use when attacked, though you should leave at least some close combat weapons in storage for your militia to grab if the attackers defeat your army. You must make sure that the number of weapons that you assign for defense is less than the number of army units that you have. You will lose whatever weapons are being carried by army or militia that are killed in battle. Any weapons that are out with an attacking army will be removed from storage and unavailable for assignment. Remember, you cannot build your own ranged weapons, vehicles, or aircraft if you have a minting license.

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Close Combat:

You will need short ranged weapons for both your defending army and militia. Your army will need them for melee battle against the attacking army and your militia will need them to protect your camp if the attacking army breaks through your army and the wall. Your army will only use the close combat weapons that you assign through the above table, while your militia will grab whatever is available in storage.

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Ranged Fire:

Ranged weapons will help your army begin attacking the invading forces at a much earlier time than short ranged weapons would allow. Your militia cannot use this weapon type, thus you will probably want to assign more of these to your army than close ranged. You will generally want to assign some short ranged weapons, though.

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Heavy Weapons:

These weapons are specifically designed to attack vehicles and aircraft. Depending on the type of weaponry around you, you may want to adjust how many of these you staff. Against a group primarily consisting of troops with few to no vehicles and choppers, you will want only a few of these since their attack power against standard troops is greatly diminished. If the attacker is heavy on vehicles, though, these weapons are very useful and rather effective.

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Ground Vehicles:

Depending on what you want to primarily target, these vehicles can at the least provide your camp an extra defense against either troops or vehicles. Tanks are great for taking out other attacking vehicles, while AAV's are really effective against standard troops. A few of these never hurt and having a decent number may be wise, depending on your other defenses and the attacker's power.

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Light Aircraft:

Though their armor is rather weak, choppers can be a nice added backup for your ground troops. They can provide a very strong offensive cover, though they can be taken out easily by stinger rockets. Use these as you see fit.

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Battle Mechs:

Defense Page Battle Mech Assignment Options

Mechs are a great defense. Each type has its own strengths and weaknesses against other troop types, but overall they are some of the strongest weapons your camp can possess. You will only be able to see this part of the defense queue and set mechs up as part of your defense if you choose the Military Path for your camp. If you do not set your camp with this focus, then you will not be able to use mechs, even if you buy them off the Trade Market.

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Guard Posts:

Defense Page Guard Post Information

Guard posts will provide you a minor benefit in battle, but are primarily used to detect special operations raids as they are coming in to attack your camp. You will have certain guard post requirements that will change and increase as your camp grows. Militia are needed to stage (staff) your guard posts, 2 apiece. You will be able to see the number of guard posts you have in total, the number of posts that are staged (fully staffed), how many militia are not currently staged in a guard post, and how your guard post efficiency is. You can see more details about guard post coverage requirements on the Infrastructure page.

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You can improve your defenses in multiple ways. Your primary method of improvement is through research. You can research Architecture to increase your overall camp's structural defense, which helps to boost your buildings defenses against burning among other things (they will not ever become fireproof, though). You can research Recreation for an overall defense bonus and Wall Strength to increase the amount of wall you can build. Military Tactics will give you a great defense boost and Weapons Design, besides giving you the ability to build increasingly effective weapons, will improve your armed soldiers attack power.

Once again, your army's competency will have a major effect on your battles with a greater competency giving you a greater boost. Competency will improve your overall attack and defense values and your troops' accuracy.

Using a Forward Concentration defensive formation is a safe bet against any attack formation, since it has no disadvantages against any of them, but it will also give you no advantage. Distributed Defense will give you an advantage against the Flanking Maneuver, but will give the attacker the advantage if they use a Ranged Fire Primary Attack. You can combat the attacker's Ranged Fire Primary assault the most effectively if set on Pro-Active defense, but this defense style will leave you vulnerable to the Flanking Maneuver.

Weather and seasons will also have a small effect on battle.

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Defense Page Reminders

Any army that is sent out on an attack will not be available to protect your camp. This will leave you with very limited defenses in comparison. Whenever you send out an attack, make sure that you have your army back before you log off if possible so you will not be left defenseless.

Defense Page Weapons Reminder

In order to assign weapons for defense, you must have those weapons in storage. If most of your weapons are off being used in an attack, you will not have their benefit, like you would lose the defense that would otherwise be provided by your full army. Your militia will only be able to use the close combat weapons available in storage after the weapons assigned for attack and defense have been removed.

Defensive Formation Update Reminder

You must remember to end a turn after you change your defensive formation orders. If you do not end a turn, especially before you log off, your orders will not update.

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