Battle field size is set by the attacking troops and the RNG and I must say it is the most important thing you need to understand if you wanna understand battle mechanics in DoA.
But first…what is this RNG that I’m sure you already hurd about?
Well…Random Number Generator is what makes all the battle reports unique by randomly changing the battle field size, the damage dealt and received per each turn in battle, the troop’s resistance and so on.
The battle field size is set based on the attacker’s troop with the largest range and RNG adds a value to the battle field size and doing so it can make you lose the first turn in battle.
WARNING! RNG usualy increases the battle field size with a value of 200-300, but sometimes the RNG increases the battle field with a value bigger than 300 and that could cause certain attacking troops to lose the first turn in battle. The RNG could also increase the battle field with a value lower than 200 or even lower than 10. That can also influence the battle reports. The RNG is called Random Number Generator for a reason – it’s random.
I’m gonna try to explain to everyone how to determine the battle field size. In case you send only melee troops it’s easy – just send the slowest melee troop you have to attack a city. You will ask me “What does that prove?”. It’s pretty obvious to everyone that 1 single troop can’t kill a Great Dragon (unless it’s another Dragon). But that’s not what we’re looking at when we read the battle reports. In your battle reports there is a “Dragon Damage” section and when you move your mouse pointer over it it shows you the damage you’ve done to the defending Dragon. Now if you dealt 0 damage to the Dragon then it’s obvious you’ve missed the first turn and the Great Dragon killed your 1 troop. Now we know that the attacker always gets the first turn in battles. But in order to take advantage of that the attacker must be close enugh to the defender to hit him. In other words ranged troops must be close enugh by range and melee must be fast enugh to cross the battle field in the first turn of the battle. The melee troops are usualy fast enugh to cross the battle field in the first turn of the battle, but not all of them are so lucky. If you send melee troops that have a speed smaller than the battle field size is set to your troops will lose the first turn in battle. Now that you know that you can easily determine the battle field size for melee.
So…you can see in the screenshots above that 1 conscript dealt more damage to the defender’s level 12 Great Dragon than 1 titan. That’s only explained cause the titan couldn’t cross the battle field in time to hit the Great Dragon. All melee troops with a speed above 200 hit the Great Dragon and dealt damage to it before they died. Now my Rapid Deployment was level 10, so that means that my Petrified Titan had a total speed of 75, my Giant 180, my Armored Transport 225 and my Conscript 300. Bottom line – the battle field size for melee is usualy set to a value between 200 and 300.
In case the attacker sends ranged units and I’m gonna try to explain how ranged attacks work.
So let’s say you send your Great Dragon(level 11 or above), that has a range of 1900 with a stagger, rainbow or ninja attack (whatever you wanna call it). Your Great Dragon(level 11 or above) has a range of 1900, the RNG adds an extra 200-300 value to the battle field size, so the battle field size is set to 2100-2200.
And now comes the question: And how does knowing that can help me?
The answer is quite complex. I’m gonna try to explain this the best way I can so that everyone would understand.
A battle is done in turns and the attacker ALWAYS gets the first turn in a battle (only sending wrong troops or having low researches the attacker might lose that advantage). So let’s just take the example I gave above: let’s say you sent the Great Dragon(level 11 or above) and RNG increases the battle field size by 300. The battle field size will be set to a value of 2200. This is how it works: every troop (ranged or non ranged) always seeks to attack the opponent troops, always tries to attack the troop that is closest, the troop that represents a threat to them. If there are no enemy troops that can be reached (by range or melee) the troops move forward into the battle field and seeks again to attack the enemy troops. If they can’t reach the enemy troops this time either they stop and pass turn to the defender. Here another research unnoticed by most people plays a huge role: Rapid Deployment. People only think about the Rapid Deployment as the research to help you use less speed-ups. But it’s not only that. Rapid Deployment plays a much bigger role. The Rapid Deployment does not only help you use less speed-ups, but also helps your troops move forward into the battle field with a bigger speed, allowing them to cross the battle field in less turns. Now the confusion I had about the way troops travel into the battle field when I started playing was “wtf does speed mean? I learned that speed is messured as distance/time. wtf is 1000 speed? 1000 what/what?”. Later I found out the answer: in a battle speed is actualy the messurement for field crossed/each turn. So if the battle field is set to 2200 like I said then my troop with speed of 1000 and Rapid Deployment level 10 moves forward into the battle field with 1500 units/turn closer to the enemy unless it has a target in it’s reach. Now that I explained that let’s go back to our battle.
WARNING! The speed of Battle Dragons and Swift Strike Dragons is also increased by the Dragonry level. So if you have Dragonry level 10 and Rapid Deployment level 10 Swift Strike Dragons will have a speed of 1000(their speed) + 50%(Rapid Deployment level 10) + 50% (Dragonry level 10) = 2000. Dragonry level only applies to Swift Strike Dragons and Battle Dragons! Banshees, Great Dragon, Elemental or Wraith Dragon are not affected by your Dragonry level!
What will happen first turn in battle?
First turn is the most important turn in battle. A good attack can do enugh damage to the defending troops and kill them all before they have a chance to get a first turn(Overkill). All the attacking troops (ranged and melee) will seek for a target in their range. The battle field size is set to 2200, the Great Dragon has a range of 1900+50%(Weapons Callibration)=2750, so no problem for him to reach his target. Lava Jaws have a range of 1600+50%(Weapons Callibation level 10)=2400, so they also hit in first turn, and so will Lightning Cannons since they have the same range. Fire Mirrors have a range of 1500+50%=2250, so they also hit target from first turn without moving forward into the battle field. Next are the Sand Striders with a range of 1200+50%=1800. They can’t reach the attacking army by range, but that doesn’t mean they lose first turn. Once ranged troops can’t reach targets by range they move forward into the battle field and search again to see if there are any troops in their range. If there are troops in their range they attack them, if not they stop and pass the turn to the defender. So our attacking Sand Striders will move forward into the battle field with 1000(their speed)+50%(Rapid Deployment level 10)=1500 units. So if the battle field is set to 2250 Sand Striders move to 750 and they attack from range with their ranged attack of 400. Longbowman have the same range of 1200+50%=1800. They can’t reach target, they move forward with their speed of 250+50%(Rapid Deployment)=325 to position 1900 on the battle field. Their range is 1200+50%(Weapons Callibration)=1800. This means Longbowman can’t reach the defender in the first turn so they stop. All the rest of the attacking troops will move forward into the battle field in the first turn. Only Great Dragon, Lava Jaws, Lightning Cannons, Fire Mirrors and Sand Strider will hit the defending army in the first turn. This is because Fangtooths have a range of 600+50%=900 and a speed of 500+50%=750. That means Fangtooths move forward into the battle field at 1300 and with their range of 750 they won’t reach their target. Venom Dwellers move forward with 300+150=450 at position 1750 and with their range of 700+50%=1050, they won’t be able to hit the defending troops either, so they stop. Banshees (the fastest troop) moved forward into the battle field with their speed of 1350+50%(Rapid Deployment level 10) = 2025 at 2200-2025=175, they didn’t find any troops in their reach and they stopped. They were close to the wall, but not close enugh. (WARNING! Sometimes RNG sets battle fields size to a lower value or doesn’t influence the battle fields size so banshees reach target too in the first turn). All the melee troops move forward into the battle field with their speed + 50% (Rapid Deployment level 10), they won’t find any troops in their reach the first turn so they will stop. After all attacking troops either attacked, moved or moved and attacked they stop and allow the defending troops to get their turn.
WARNING! All troops (melee or ranged) if they don’t have any enemy troops in their reach they move forward into the battle field, search for enemies in their reach. If they can reach enemies only by range they attack by range. If they reach enemies by melee they attack with their melee attack and not with ranged attack. Only when they don’t have troops in their melee reach they can attack by ranged attack.
WARNING! The level of Weapons Callibration does not influence the battle field size in any way! The Weapons Callibration give your troops extra range, so you won’t lose the first turn in battle. Also Rapid Deployment level help your troops not losing the first turn in battle. The highest the levels of Weapons Callibration and Rapid Deployment the smaller the risk of losing the first turn in battle.
WARNING!: RNG adds a RANDOM value to the battle field size. Sometimes that value is set to be larger than 300 and if you gather that value with GD’s range and if your Rapid Deployment or Weapons Callibration levels are not high enugh your Fire Mirrors might miss the first turn in battle (I know Fire Mirrors require level 10 Weapons Callibration, but reapers don’t require level 10 Weapons Callibration to reap Fire Mirrors). The best way to prevent that from happening is to send Fire Mirrors with a dragon with a shorter range – Water, Wind, Frost, Helio, Amber Crest Dragon or even Mephitic Serpent. That doesn’t mean that if you send them with Stone, Fire or Great Dragon level 11 or above if your researches are high enugh. But there is the RNG risk that you would lose the first turn in battle. And of course the highest the level of Rapid Deployment and Weapons Callibration the less chances for your troops to miss the first turn in battle.
Let’s get back to our battle. As you can see in the example I gave you the Great Dragon, Lava Jaws, Lightning Cannons and Fire Mirrors didn’t had to move forward into the battle field. All the rest of the other troops moved forward into the battle field and only Sand Striders were able to hit the defending troops after they moved. The rest of the troops all lost first turn in battle.
Usualy ranged troops attack the speed troops cause those are seen as the biggest threat to them. Why?
Let’s take the Lava Jaws as an example. Lava Jaws are not stupid to attack speed troops, they just know that speed troops will be the first troops to reach them by melee. Once the enemy’s speed troops reached your ranged troops your surviving ranged units attack the speed troops BY MELEE, not allowing them to attack the other troops on the wall from a safe range with their ranged attack. This is the reason you do need speed troops in your defense. Take down the speed units from the wall and the attacking Lava Jaws will be attacking the troop that they see as the biggest threat now. That order is influenced by the nr. of each defending troop type, by combat boosts, by researches, by battle field size and so on.
Now you may ask why do you need Granite Ogres and other troops in your attacks next to Lava Jaws, Lightning Cannons, Fire Mirrors, Sand Striders and Great Dragon. You need speed troops so that they move forward into the battle field and die. Yes, die. I know you don’t like losing troops, but you need to lose some. Sand Striders will also die after the first turn if there are enugh troops surviving the attacker’s first turn due to the fact that they are too close to the defender now and can be reached by almost every melee and ranged troop on the defender’s wall.
And here is why: let’s say you don’t send any speed troops in your march, that you only send a march with a Great Dragon, Lava Jaws and Granite Ogres. Everything is good in the first turn. Like I said before – in our case Great Dragon(level 11 or above) and RNG set the battle field size to 2200. First turn Great Dragon attacks the defending army from range with his ranged attack, Lava Jaws, Lightning Cannons, Fire Mirrors also attack the defending army from range with their ranged attack, Granite Ogres and Sand Striders move forward into the battle field, Sand Striders also attacks with ranged attack, only ogres don’t have any enemy troops in their reach and don’t attack.
Everything going great for the attacker in the first turn and if it’s a small wall that your Lava Jaws will kill in the first turn you don’t even need Granite Ogres. Now…what seems to be the problem? The problem is when your attacking troops won’t kill the entire wall in 1 turn. Once the attacker is done attacking comes the defender’s turn.
The defending Lava Jaws, Fire Mirrors and Lightning Cannons will have your Lava Jaws and Granite Ogres in their range now. The trick is each troop type only attack one troop type each turn. But that means each troop type only defends 1 troop type each turn, unless they are the only defending (or attacking) troops in range – this case all the attacking (or defending) troops that can hit them will do it. Basicaly, to make myself understood…every defending unit block targets a troop block that they can reach. If that troop block is already targeted the next defending unit targets another troop in their reach and so on, untill all the troops in reach are targeted. Once all the troops in their reach are targeted the next defending unit can target a troop already targeted.
So now even if the defending Lava Jaws will target your attacking Granite Ogres the defending Lightning Cannons and/or Fire Mirrors will target your attacking Lava Jaws, the defender’s surviving speed units and short ranged units will all go kill the troops in their reach at that time (Sand Striders). Once your Lava Jaws are dead the surviving attacking Granite Ogres won’t be able to cross the battle field in time. Each turn all the defending Lava Jaws, Lightning Cannons and Fire Mirrors will attack them and all the defending troops that can’t reach them in the first turn will move closer and attack them once they get in their reach. After a few turns all the defending ranged units will attack them from range, all the speed units will attack them with melee.
If you also add bumps in your stagger/rainbow or ninja attack(whatever you wanna call it) the defending troops will each attack one troop type per turn – the one troop type they see as a the biggest threat. That will save your Lava Jaws for another turn since the defending Lava Jaws, Lightning Cannons and Fire Mirrors will target your speed units cause those are seen as the biggest threat for them.
WARNING! Lightning Cannons don’t have a specific attack order, their greatest ability is that they attack other troop type each turn in battle. They usualy target melee units first, but if all the melee units are already targeted by the other defending troops they will randomly hit your ranged units. Yes, your poor LJs, Fire Mirrors, Lightning Cannons, Fangtooths or Venom Dwellers.
WARNING! If you’re gonna send Fire Mirrors in your attack always remember Fire Mirrors are slow units! If you’re gonna send Fire Mirrors with Great Dragon(level 11 or above), Fire Dragon or Stone Dragon your Fire Mirrors might not be able to hit the defending army in the first turn cause of the RNG! The battle field size will be set to the Dragon’s range plus your Weapons Callibration level. Fire Mirrors are great troops, but they should be sent with other Dragons with the range of max 1500 so that they would be able to move forward into the battle field and attack in the first turn of the battle. Fire Mirror’s range is 1500+50%(Weapons Callibration)=2250. If you send them with Great Dragon(level 11 or above) the Great Dragon will set the battle field size to 1900+RNG. Fire Mirror’s speed is 50+50%(Rapid Deployment level 10)=75. This means that if the RNG extends the battle field with more than 351 the Fire Mirrors will lose the first turn. The battle field size will be 1900+426 = 2321. In the first turn Fire Mirrors will search for a target in their range, they won’t find any, they will move forward into the battle field at 2251, search again for a target in their range(their range is 2250), they won’t find any target cause all the defending units are on the walls since the attacker gets the first turn in battle and they will stop – pass the turn to the defender.
WARNING! The higher the level of Weapons Callibration and Rapid Deployment the less is the risk to lose the first turn in battle cause of the RNG!
WARNING! The standard battle field size for attacking melee units only is set to a value between 200 and 300. The melee battle field size is not set at 500 like everyone thinks. That allows your Conscripts and Frost Giants to reach their target in first turn in battle if sent only with melee units. The melee battle field doesn’t change based on your Rapid Deployment or speed units you send. For example if you send one attack only with Banshees, Granite Ogres, Frost Giants, Giants, Conscripts, Porters, Armored Transports, Battle Dragons, Swift Strike Dragons, Storm Drakes, Dark Slayers, Minotaurs, Halberdsmans, Spies, Petrified Titans, Pack Dragons, Soul Reapers and Mephitic Serpent the battle field size will be set to 200-300, so all units will hit in the first turn, minus Porters, Giants, Armored Transports and Petrified Titans.
It isn’t hard to prove all I said above. There are more ways to prove it, but I’m just gonna show you a simple way to do it. You should know by now that sending melee with ranged troops is bad. Why? It’s bad because the ranged troops add to the battle field size the value of their range. I’ll take Banshees as an example next. Banshees have a speed of 1350 plus Rapid Deployment. In my case Rapid Deployment was level 10 when I attacked all these camps so my Banshees have a total speed of 1350+50%=2025. All camps are fully regenerated.
Of course banshees will work with all melee. There is no doubt in that. Just wanted to make sure I mention this battle report here to start from the smallest battle field size and rise the battle field value to the max. So in this case the battle field size is set only by the RNG. That means the common battle field size is set to 200-300. How do I know that? Because anyone can test it. We all know the attacker gets the first turn in battle right? If you send a conscript to attack a city you will notice that the defender’s Great Dragon takes damage from the conscript. The conscript has a speed of 200. With my Rapid Deployment level 10 it will have a total speed of 300. If he dealt damage to the Great Dragon it means the conscript did not lose the first turn in battle, that he managed to cross the battle field in time and hit the Great Dragon first. Then of course the Great Dragon killed the conscript. Now try that with 1 Giant. Giants are way more powerful than conscripts, but their speed is only 120. If I add my Rapid Deployment level 10 that makes the Giant to have a speed of 180. You will notice that the Giant did not damage the Great Dragon even if the conscript has less melee attack. So the battle field size is set to be somewhere between 180 and 300. Let’s send 1 Armored Transport. Armored Transport have a speed of 150, so if I add my Rapid Deployment the total speed of the Armored Transport will be 225. You will notice that the Armored Transport also does not damage the Great Dragon in any way, so now you got even closer to the exact battle field size. Now you know that the melee battle field size is set to a value between 225 and 300. If you test that with other players that have lower Rapid Deployment you will have a more precise idea about the melee battle field. Now let’s go back to our tests with banshees. You may have read before that 25,000 banshees can take a level 9 anthropus camp with no losses. That means the banshees kill all the anthropus in the first turn in battle and that the anthropus don’t have a chance to fight back. Now let’s prove all that I said before about battle field size and RNG, about Rapid Deployment and Weapons Callibration.
Case 1. Banshees and melee. Battle field size is set to the attacker’s longest range (zero for melee troops) + RNG (200-300). So the melee battle field size is 200-300.
Case 2. Banshees with Fangtooths. Fangtooths have a range of 600. So the battle field size is set to 600+RNG=800-900. Banshees have a speed of 1350+50%=2025. Enugh speed for them to cross the battle field and hit in the first turn of the battle, the same time fangtooths hit.
Case 3. Banshees and Venom Dwellers. Venom Dwellers sent with banshees are pretty much the same as Banshees sent with Fangtooths. Only Venom Dwellers increase the battle field size with 700 units, not 600 like Fangtooths do. So battle field size for Venom Dwellers and Banshees is 700+RNG=1100-1200. Banshees have the speed of 2025. They cross the battle field and hit in the first turn of the battle.
Case 4. Banshees with Wind Dragon. Wind Dragon has a range of 1000. The battle field is now 1000+RNG=1200-1300. Banshees cross the battle field in the first turn with their speed of 2025 and hit in the first turn.
Case 5. Banshees with Sand Striders and/or Longbowmen. Longbowmen and Sand Strider have the same range of 1200 so they work exactly the same if sent only with Banshees. They set the battle field size to the value of 1200+RNG=1400-1500. Again Banshees have a speed of 2025 so no problem for them to cross the battle field size in the first turn of the battle.
Case 6. Banshees with Helio Dragon. Helio Dragon has a range of 1400. Battle field size is set to 1400+RNG=1600-1700. Banshees have the speed of 2025 with Rapid Deployment 10 so they cross the battle field and don’t miss the first turn in battle.
Case 7. Banshees with Water Dragon, Frost Dragon, Amber Crest Dragon and/or Fire Mirrors. In all cases the largest range of the attacker is 1500, so the battle field size is set to 1500+RNG=1700-1800. Banshees cross it in time with their speed of 2025 and don’t miss the first turn in battle.
Case 8. Banshees with Lava Jaws and/or Lightning Cannons. Both Lava Jaws and Lightning Cannons have a range of 1600, so the battle field size is set for both at 1600+RNG=1800-1900. Banshees have the speed of 2025, so they cross the battle field and hit in the first turn.
Case 9. Banshees with Stone Dragon. Stone Dragon’s range is 1700. That means the battle field size is 1700+RNG=1900-2000. Banshees have a speed of 2025, so they cross it and they hit in first turn.
Case 10. Banshees with Fire Dragon. Fire Dragon’s range is 1800, so the battle field size is set to 1800+RNG=2000-2100. Now banshees could cross the battle field in time or not. Remember RNG is called Random Number Generator for a reason – it adds random values. In our case to the battle field size. This time my Banshees crossed the battle field in first turn with their speed of 2025. That means the RNG was set to a value smaller than 225. Next time I might not be so lucky and my banshees will lose the first turn in battle.
Case 11. Banshees with Great Dragon level 11 or above. My Great Dragon was level 12 here. So his range is 1900, that means the battle field size was set to 1900+RNG=2100-2200. Banshees have a speed of 2025 and this time they were not able to cross the battle field in the first turn. In the first turn my Great Dragon was the only one who actualy hit the anthropus, while the Banshees only moved forward into the battle field. The anthropus who survived my Great Dragon’s attack and who were close enugh to my Banshees all hit the Banshees, killing some of them. In the second turn of the battle my Banshees killed the rest of the anthropus.
WARNING! I do not recomend sending Banshees with Stone, Fire or Great Dragon. The RNG could add a bigger value to the battle field size and Banshees could miss the first turn in battle, giving the defender a chance to kill them. Best way to send Banshees is with non ranged or small range dragons. They can be sent with Lava Jaws, but there is always the risk of RNG setting the battle field size to a value too big for the banshees.
CONCLUSION: Banshees are awsome troops – they have good load capacity, they are fast and if your Rapid Deployment level is high enugh you can send them with all ranged and non ranged troops and almost all Dragons. If you don’t have enugh Banshees or Lava Jaws or other troops to attack certain levels of anthropus camps you can combine Banshees with other troop types. Just do a little math to figure how much damage points you need to do to the anthropus to kill them in the first turn and you should be fine. Remember anthropus are the equivalent of city troops without researches so you can calculate what it takes to kill them. When you do the math to see how much damage you need to do to the anthropus to kill them in the first turn of the battle remember you also have Metallurgy – each level of Metallurgy increases the damage you do to the defenders. Your Medicine does not matter since you want to kill them in the first turn. Also if you use combat boosts remember about those too and you might come up with an eficient way to farm camps.
WARNING! Another thing you need to know: Sending Lava Jaws with Banshees to attack anthropus camps is not gonna work so well. Why? Because Lava Jaws set the battle field to the size of 1600+RNG=1800-1900. With Weapons Callibration level 10 Lava Jaws can hit targets from a range of 2400. That means that Lava Jaws attack the anthropus from 1900 distance. Anthropus have no Weapons Callibration or Rapid Deployment level. That means that the fastest anthropus are the Shredders (equiv. of Swift Strike Dragons) and the anthropus with the best range are the Ragers (equiv. of Fire Mirrors). The Lava Jaws don’t move from the spot of 1900 and no anthropus can hit them. They kill the Shredders(SSDs) and Chieftans(equiv. of Battle Dragons) first cause the Shredders can hit them in turn 2 of the battle and Chieftans in turn 3, then they have many turns till they could be hit by other troops since the Ragers have a speed of only 50 and they only move 50 units closer to them each turn and their range is not increased by Weapons Callibration, so it’s just 1500 range while you are at 1900 distance first turn. On other words the Lava Jaws kill the anthropus in multiple turns, that’s why it takes only a few of them to kill a level 10 camp.
The huge difference of Lava Jaws you need for level 11 anthropus camps is that level 11 camps need to be wiped in the first – max second turn of the battle cause they have both LJs(Launchers) and Banshees (Divers). That’s the same reason you need to send Great Dragon, Fire Dragon or Stone Dragon with your LJs – to extend the battle field as much as possible and take advantage of the Weapons Callibration. The Launchers are the equivalent of Lava Jaws, they have good speed also, to even if they can’t reach you in their first turn of the battle cause they don’t have Weapons Callibration research they will move closer to you with the speed of 400 and they will be able to hit you in the second turn of the battle. If you also add the Great Dragon to your march the battle field size will be set to 1900+RNG=2100-2200. That’s how far your Lava Jaws will be from them. If you don’t add the Great Dragon to your march your Lava Jaws will set the battle field size at 1600+RNG=1800-1900 and that’s where your Lava Jaws will be and the anthropus will be able to hit you in the second turn of the battle. RNG value that increases the battle field size can be set to absolute zero also! Don’t take risks! You might lose your Lava Jaws cause of the RNG! Send them with Stone, Fire or Great Dragon to protect them. The Serpent also protects them cause he is melee and the defending troops will hit it instead of your Lava Jaws, but he will usualy die after the first turn. The reason you send Armored Transports with your Lava Jaws on level 11 camps is that they are slow melee – they get ahead your Lava Jaws and being melee they are targeted by the Launchers first. That will make the Launchers waste another turn in battle. Being so slow the Armored Transports don’t move too far away from your Lava Jaws and being melee they will be targeted by the Lauchers before your Lava Jaws. If your Armored Transports die, then be greatfull they died – they died protecting your Lava Jaws. :)
Update: To prove the connection between rapid deployment and range once again I recently got me a great sanctuary ability – Mobility. I got 24% mobility, that means my troops are 24% faster into the battle field. That will help my banshees sent with the Great Dragon level 11 or above to cross the battle field set by my Great Dragon and not lose the first turn in battle.
FINAL WORDS! Upgrade your Rapid Deployment and your Weapons Callibration as much as possible if you want to reduce the risk of RNG killing your troops!