Since I've been threatened on Discord to release an update or suffer the consequences (destruction of all breweries in the world by V2 rockets) I have no other option than to coply.
This time the changelog is divided into sections and we provide our notes on the section which explain what was changed and why (in case such explanation was needed.
Let's get to it, shall we?
Standardizing the HMGs doesn’t mean every HMG will behave like an MG42 now. There is still variation between the different HMGs, but they will not be so different where one type is more damage oriented while the other is suppression. All MGs should be more about suppressing than killing now.
- Unified stats modifiers when a HMG shoots at a suppressed infantry
- Changed suppression values for .30cal and Vickers HMGs (teams and MG nests) to so that they generate same suppression amount per burst as MG42
- Lowered extra suppression that received that nearby squads received (was +25% now they get the same as the targeted squad)
Camo Mechanics Standardization
- Standardized camo settings for infantry units (bonuses, how long they stay revealed etc.)
- Standardized camo reveal number of shots for vehicles to be 1 shot
- Revized CQB camo settings to prevent situations where they could easily shred enemy infantry over great distances
Assault Howitzer Support Mechanics
In order to preserve the original effectiveness of howitzer tanks against emplacements as they were original intended, reworks to the long range fire ability was made. Ideally this change prevents the howitzer tanks from being strong anti-tank camping weapons as they were before.
- Howitzer tanks will no longer be able to "double shoot" in certain situations
- Howitzer tanks now have unified scatter in auto-fire mode (StuPa still have a bit more)
- Howitzer tanks will now properly rotate to face the target when they use their long range ability
- When you command Howitzer tanks to use their long-range ability, it will fire 3 shots or until the vision on the target is lost
- Long range ability of Howitzer tanks is now free
Wehrmacht AT Capabilities
The recent patches have been tough to balance between the new WM AT squad and the updated US 50cals. Instead of continued tweaks, we are attempting to take a different approach where we “restore the game” back to a more stable balanced state and move the AT squad into a more aggressive oriented role. The best place to reward aggressive tactics would be blitz doc. We are interested to see how the squad will be used now and look to balance it so it is a viable early attacking unit.
- LeiG18 is no longer a reward unit, can be built in Forward HQs by any doctrine
- PaK36 returned to HQ
- GrB39 squad moved to Barracks
- GrB39 squad available only in Blitzkrieg doctrine
- Removed the "Rocket" ability from 50mm PaK38
Experimental Wehrmacht Build Order Update
WM has always had a difficult early game in high resources mode because it cannot build all its unit producing buildings as quickly as USA or PE. WM players would often come to a difficult choice between retreating a pioneer early in the middle of the fight to build or keeping the pioneer in combat at critical moments risking the Allied player stomping through with medium tier units. We hope that by shifting some of the dependencies around for WM it can have a level playing field against Allies from the early to mid game. We currently have a guess as to what the meta might turn into, but we won’t reveal that hoping to see how players will adapt naturally and making necessary tweaks from there.
- Tier 2 building no longer requires T2 upgrade from HQ to be built
- Units available in T2 building without T2 upgrade: Transport Halftrack, 50mm PaK, 28mm Halftrack (Defensive Doctrine), 20mm flak38 Halftrack (Defensive Doctrine), 37mm PaK36 Halftrack (Blitzkrieg Doctrine; HE mode become available only with T2 upgrade)
- Other units require T2 upgrade to be built, units that previously required T3 upgrade still require T3
- Tier 2 building fuel cost reduced to 15 (from 20) *
- Tier 2 upgrade fuel cost increased to 20 (from 15) *
Previously Reworked Doctrine Balance Adjustments
- Build time of 76mm Jumbo increased to 65 seconds (from 55)
- "Defensive Operations" unlock no longer reduces lay times of mines
- Weapon Mass Production upgrade now requires Supply Yard
- Increased cost of Tank Commander Off-map Barrage to 100 ammunition (from 85)
- Panzer IV H basic cost dropped to 550MP 65F (from 80F)
- Mass Production unlock reduces the cost of Panzer IV H to 525MP 55F (from 450MP 65F)
- Stormtrooper Demolition Team deployed from Stormtrooper Halftrack now correctly requires the unlock to be used
- Blitzkrieg and Terror doctrines can no longer build classic bunkers
- Changed loadout of CQB squad to 4xThompson + 2x Shotgun *
- 105mm Sherman should no longer refuse to fire at enemy buildings
- M36 Jackson is now properly available in Armor doctrine
- Removed invisible coaxial .30cal from M20 (both normal and Command version)
- HE rifle grenades should no longer get stuck on most objects on their trajectory
- Changed the Recon bonus of Command Car, now it provides +10 vision range and detection of enemy tanks in FoW at range of 70
- Grenadiers called in with Offmap Battlegroup will no longer have shorter reinforcement times
The Main Event: Reworked Defensive Doctrine
At its heart, the doctrine still puts a lot of emphasis on defending own territory but allows for some combined-arms pushes. The main goal for the rework isn’t to nerf, buff, or even make the doctrine more well-rounded. Instead it is to change the way the doctrine is played from a “one optimized build order” type of style to a “skill based” doctrine that rewards long term and adaptive strategizing. This rework should also keep in pace with other reworks going on now that every doctrine will effectively have some type of emplacement counter which was originally the main focus of defense doc. We look forward to the results of test games to see how people will potentially change how they use this doctrine in light of other reworks in place.
First things first - the new unlock tree of Defensive Doctrine looks like this:
Now for more details:
The biggest change to def doc is about how bunkers are used. The intent here is to remove the idea that defense doc is a “place and forget” OP defensive units doctrine but instead rewards well planned defenses. This was done by updating how bunkers work. What we found was that all other emplacements and defenses, like trenches and 88 cannons, had a risk/reward aspect to them where there was a chance that a badly placed defense can fall to the hands of the enemy. Taking this concept in mind, bunkers are no longer considered as immovable objects that can’t change hands. Instead, the bunkers would become "garrisonable" by opponent, if he manages to kill the crew inside. This may seem as a net nerf, however bunkers provide better protection from bullets and arty now so the infantry inside would survive easier than now. There are other creative ways to take advantage of this change. For example, as any neutral structure the bunkers would become possible for booby-trapping and with the latest changes it would be possible to plant a demo charge next to it so when the bunker becomes overrun, you can destroy it to prevent opponent from getting a strong defense point. Repair and Medic bunkers have very low vision range, as their function is not spotting but repairing/healing.
In summary, the bunkers are strong defenses but soldiers inside are more susceptible to grenades and flames. So when opponent manages to get close, it pays off. At the same time it should make defenders to prepare accordingly - tank traps/ barbed wires on approaches to prevent opponent getting close, placing mines etc.
- Bunkers/Pantherturms are now neutral when not garrisoned (can be garrisoned by opponent if left unguarded)
- Removed upgrades from bunkers: Feurleit, HMG
- Observation bunker can no longer build scouts and snipers
- Bunkers have now 0 vision (they are neutral when not garrisoned so they cannot provide vision but vision is provided by garrisoned infantry)
- Observation bunker upgrade increases vision of garisoned infantry
- After upgrading bunker to Medic or Repair stations, these bunkers can no longer be garisoned, but become owned by player permanently (cannot be captured)
- Increased HP of Pantherturm to 5000 (from 3000)
- Pantherturm gun no longer auto-targets nearby infantry
Observation Post Upgrade
Because changes were made so that defense doc isn’t about extremely “place and forget” defenses, updates are needed so that defensive players can have more time to reactively plan. The OP upgrades give that time. Fortify perimeter has been moved to make room for this OP upgrade.
- "Fortify Perimeter"upgrade (MGs on top of base building) moved to HQ (150MP 15F)
- Added unlock "Improved Observation Posts" (increases HP of OPs (+200); OPs take less damage (-35%), and detect enemy vehicles in FoW)
Advanced repairs from start provided an advantage for Def doc, so now Pioneers will need to first spend some CP to get it, on the other hand the unlock is now available sooner than before. The weapon change on Grenadiers is made to underline their defensive role. STGs are assault weapons. G43s will turn the squad from mid-long range effective to mainly mid range effective but still possible to combine with LMG/Schreck upgrades and gain reasonable loadout. Unlike in PE, Grens in Def doc will get no "Suppressive volley" ability with G43 upgrade. Changes to Officer aura system again underline the defensive nature of the doctrine, making soldiers and structures on own territory stronger in defense while removing an option for supporting troops during an assault. We also feel that a defense-oriented officer in Axis faction (which is focused on defenses) is a nice touch.
- Pioneers: now receive improved Repair ability only after Pioneer unlock (changes repair speed from "5" to "8") *
- Grenadiers: lose STG44 upgrade, instead receive 2x G43 upgrade option (40 ammo each)
- keeps current abilities
- loses current aura bonuses to surrounding infantry (only in Def doc, in other docs he keeps current aura)
- when in own sector, provides defensive bonuses sector-wide (similar to CW Captain)
- infantry in sector: HP regen 0.004; rec. suppresion -50%
- infantry in sector in trenches: rec.damage -5%; rec.accuracy -15% (defensive bonuses from "Fight and Cover" don't apply in trenches)
- Emplacements/bunkers: max HP +25%
- infantry in sector: HP regen 0,004; +15% max HP
- Emplacements/bunkers: take 5% less damage
- lvl3: - bonus to income from the sector he's in (+3ammo/fuel)
Support Weaponry Changes
LeiG18 is now available for Defensive Doctrine in second building as it serves as nice support gun and can provide indirect fire support. For BK and Terror doctrines the LeiG18 is, as mentioned already, no longer a reward unit - it is available only in FHQ, similarly as Pack Howitzer for USA docs. Removal of Puma-based vehicles is because of their offensive nature, this doctrine relies on Halftracks as main early vehicles. Changes to Elephant are there to make it more useful because using the static position was just asking for arty/air strike.
- LeiG18 available in second building (no longer reward for PaK38)
- Flakpanzer 38(t), Puma 50mm (reward for Puma with 20mm), StuPa removed from the Defense doctrine *
- Elefant now has Ambush ability insted of "static position" and at level 2 gets ALRS *
- Grille now fires a barrage of 4 shots with a bigger scatter so it hits an area (from 1 very accurate shot)*
- PaK40 emplacement (available at same phase as normal PaK40; no unlock)
- 280mm offmap Rocket artillery strike changed for 150mm offmap Hummel barrage *
Next update will bring changes to Terror doctrine and few changes to Airborne doctrine.
There it is. We hope you will enjoy the new Defensive doctrine.