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Wednesday, February 8, 2012

WoT Map Analysis: Erlenberg

Each map in World of Tanks has some optimal places for tanks to go. No strategy is perfect and often times player skill rules, but a good strategy followed by a platoon can often times swing things in your favor. This series will hopefully lay out some ground work and give ideas on how best to tackle a map by analyzing the standard game play for each map.

Our fifth map that we will cover is Erlenberg. A large river splits this map in half, with three bridges acting as chokepoints between halves. A small town surrounds the center bridge, while the north and south bridges have fewer buildings providing cover. A large castle overlooks the west half of the map on a large hilltop, offering cover and supporting fire positions. Hills overlook the city in the east, with sufficient vegetation to provide some concealment for tanks.

Erlenberg may have a few buildings littering the battlefield, but by no means is it a city fight. With only 3 crossing points but plenty of hull down spots, the two forces know exactly where engagements will happen. Using what buildings exist near the bridges and the hills to gain hull down till be to your advantage as the space in between is open ground and easy targets for SPGs and tanks hiding in sniper positions.

The bridges on the map, North and South, are the two major choke points and are the focus of the majority of the battles. Typically all tanks will focus on these areas, taking advantage of the hills on the opposite side of the river for hull down positions while attackers will push into the buildings. The Red Line in the north spawn has the starting advantage to push to the Orange arrow and even as far as behind the crest of the A row with fast tanks. The south spawning team will take the Blue Line and be able to push into the buildings on the far side of the river at the Orange arrow, which offer far more cover than the near side, and as with the north, be facing tanks hulled down on the hill. Unlike the north, there is no slope to the south near the hill, only a flat open plain.

Artillery has very limited locations with which to position. The most convenient and safe spaces are near the initial spawn, and so the typical SPG player will move to the forests in the corner of the board, sitting in the marked out Green Boxes in A0 and K1. Counter-battery fire can easily be achieved due to the limited hiding spots for SPGs to camp.

With the north and south bridges covered by the majority of teams on both sides, adventurous light tanks and faster mediums can take advantage of the under-utilized central bridge and the covered offered by the buildings in the area. The Green Line of the central bridge is great for quick scouting, and careful sneaking of mediums to flank enemy positions and help their team make the push across the bridges on either side of the map. While areas between are exposed, the buildings do offer the ability to peek out, take a shot, and retreat into cover. Additionally the capture zones are a short distance away from each other with simple access via the central bridge for either a quick capture attempt or hasty defensive maneuver.

Along with the central bridge are the two hilltop sniper positions, the castle and the hilltop home. Both of these locations not only offer some supporting views of the bridges to the north and south, but can also act as excellent flag defense and center bridge counters. The Orange/Blue boxes show these areas where a successful TD can turn the tides on either side. The only problem is allowing too many assets to use this area as only a couple of TDs or a medium would be sufficient to cover the sectors that this area provides.

Effectively plan around this analysis, use the route to your advantage to best take on what tanks to expect in each area, and always support where areas are lightly defended but be ready to reenforce as needed. With a good platoon at your side, and now knowing this map better, each bridge needs to be balanced with forces or one may just collapse your attack, sending your forces down river.

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