The latest installment in the Company of Heroes franchise, Company of Heroes 3, is set in the Mediterranean region of North Africa during WW2. The game is the most diverse in the series in terms of geography and warfare and is naturally attracting a bunch of players who are new to the series and genre as a whole.
Real-time Strategy games can be daunting and confusing for newcomers, so we have compiled five of the most helpful tips for players new to the game.
Use your Tactical Pause
Quick wit and decision-making are two major skills players need to be good at Real-time Strategy games. These games can be overwhelming, and not knowing your next move may cost you the battle.
Company of Heroes 3 offers a Tactical Pause which allows you to pause the game by pressing the space bar, giving you virtually an infinite amount of time to think and give orders to your units.
The Tactical Pause essentially acts as training wheels and is a good way for new players to learn the ins and outs of the game. It ultimately helps them ease into the ultra-competitive world of online multiplayer.
It doesn’t matter how smart you are or how quick you can think. If your battle plans cannot be executed just as quickly as you come up with them, then all that brain power is wasted.
Speed is key in real-time strategy games and Company of Heroes 3 is no different, which is why you must learn the games’ hotkeys. Using a mouse to input orders across the battlefield is not only a slow process but also an excellent way to let your opponent outperform you.
There are a large number of hotkeys and it’s impossible to get comfortable with using them right away, but new players should make it a habit to use a few of them until they get used to all of them.
This sounds obvious, but its importance cannot be stressed enough, especially in a game like Company of Heroes 3. If you do not have your infantry that are engaged in combat protected behind cover then they will get taken out pretty much instantly regardless of whether they are in a ‘safe’ location or not.
When infantry is selected and moved to a location, the place will be represented by grey, orange, or green dots. Grey means no cover and green means full cover.
Certain infantry and mechanized units, along with air support, can use smoke cover. As the name suggests, it covers your units by blocking the enemy’s lines of sight, which causes them to lose the ability to target you.
Smoke covers are instrumental when attacking a heavily fortified location, or facing off against a large group of enemy infantry. Additionally, they can be used to protect your tanks from anti-tank guns that are too far off for you to target.
Don’t hesitate to retreat
When you realize you’re losing the battle and some of your troops are doomed to die, your natural response would be to forget about them and move on with your next plan of attack.
However, it’s always a good idea to command your surviving troops to retreat and regroup with reinforcements as those added numbers will make your new wave of soldiers that much more vital and ultimately increase the odds of you winning the battle.