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SuperTheBoss

Let's talk about flexing

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Hey forums,

This is a random battle specific topic. I finished grinding my a-43 last night and had a string of 1500-2500 dmg games in which I did an effective job of leaving where I had initially deployed to get 1k extra damage and contribute to wins. I have heard about flexing before and I understood it on some level but this is the first time that it really kind of "clicked" if that makes sense. I am interested in trying to work this more into my overall game but I have not had much success with it in the past so I have some concerns.

Firstly, I think I have some deployment issues. I have historically had a lot more success in heavies where I go to an aggressive defensible position where it's a pain for the enemy to deal with me. For faster tanks: Is it viable to try to take a key terrain feature with flexing being a backup plan or do you generally start a match with a plan of flexing around between flanks?

Secondly, in the past I have had issues with being killed from behind whenever I try to leave a failing flank which is why I have generally just stayed put and taken as many enemies as possible with me on the way out. I recognize that this is due to me not leaving early enough to leave safely but I'm not sure what to do about it. For slower tanks: Is there something that you look for to predict a flank failing early enough to gtfo safely? (i.e. enemy movements, ally movements, kills/damage done by the enemy etc.)

I know these questions are very general and the real answer is "it depends", so if there is no specific answer I get it but any help or bits of advice about moving around the map or reading the battle are certainly appreciated as well.

Thanks for your responses.

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Sounds like you are being aware of the minimap, and using that information to make predictions about where the enemies will go from where they are now. 

What you should do is look at the minimap and pause for 5 seconds while your gun reloads and just think where the enemy is likely to be in 1 minute, 2 minutes, 5 minutes. If they're all going to be on top of you in 1 minute, get moving and set up in another location. If they're all going to be somewhere else and you won't have shots or vision on any of them, then get moving. 

If you repeat this cycle you'll keep up your current trend of improvement. 

Add to this initial assumptions about team composition and how they are likely to deploy initially. if you're on Live Oaks and there's a unicum platoon in 113s and 50bs and your team is mostly heavies, think about what would happen if those three top tier heavies smash down the 9-0 line and wreck your mediums, and also what is likely to happen if they go to town. And then when you see the patterns unfolding on the minimap, you have anticipated scenarios and you can be more proactive than reactive. 

Watch X3N4's replays, he really showcases the power of optimal and non-static positioning.

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2 hours ago, SuperTheBoss said:

For faster tanks: Is it viable to try to take a key terrain feature with flexing being a backup plan or do you generally start a match with a plan of flexing around between flanks?

Most of the time, yes. There are certain spots which are difficult to escape from, but on my experience taking advantageous map positions is key for winning. Just monitor your minimap, and if you feel like things may go poorly in the near future, run away. No shame in taking a position that won't result in your early demise.

2 hours ago, SuperTheBoss said:

For slower tanks: Is there something that you look for to predict a flank failing early enough to gtfo safely? (i.e. enemy movements, ally movements, kills/damage done by the enemy etc.)

 

For slower tanks, allied support is generally required for success. If you take an aggressive position in a slower tank, you will not escape if your flank falls. You need to have confidence based on your current level of allied support and the enemy tank composition that you will win the inevitable battle at your location. Practice makes perfect, so experiment with different positions and see what happens when you go there with a slower vehicle.

If you are not confident that you'll win at a position, don't go. Stay alive so you can help carry later.

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59 minutes ago, TheLovePanda said:

If you are not confident that you'll win at a position, don't go. Stay alive so you can help carry later.

Basically this. I have been so hesitant to do this because I don't want to abandon my allies, but the more games I win the more I realize that given the chance your allies will not support you, not use your support effectively or otherwise disappoint at an unacceptably high rate . Regardless of anyone's stats, I've seen too many 'gud" players throw games in a variety of ways that any time you're not the last one standing you're leaving it up to chance. 

Does this sound about right? Of course I want to support my allies but it seems like the more selfish I play the more I win which is of course the goal. 

Tl;dr: support your allies as much as possible as long as it doesn't cost you HP you will need to carry them later and leaving them to die if the flank falls is often the right move?

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1 hour ago, SuperTheBoss said:

Does this sound about right? Of course I want to support my allies but it seems like the more selfish I play the more I win which is of course the goal. 

Being a good custodian of your hitpoints is never selfish. A 2v2 engagement where you pull out and leave your low HP teammate alone can be a tough call, and sometimes pulling out completely is not best. In that case you might open up the engagement range and still try to support your ally or distract the enemies if you can do it safely. But if it's shaping up to be a 3 vs 7 and you're a one-shot, you have no obligation to stay behind and get crushed with allies who have made a bad decision and didn't see where the situation was headed. I see this in the magical forest on Malinovka a lot. A medium tank in the forest against 5 enemies is in a rough spot. A medium tank closer to base spotting for arty and TDs on the other side can make sure those 5 enemies never make it across the open ground from the forest to cap.

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3 hours ago, SuperTheBoss said:

Basically this. I have been so hesitant to do this because I don't want to abandon my allies, but the more games I win the more I realize that given the chance your allies will not support you, not use your support effectively or otherwise disappoint at an unacceptably high rate . Regardless of anyone's stats, I've seen too many 'gud" players throw games in a variety of ways that any time you're not the last one standing you're leaving it up to chance. 

Does this sound about right? Of course I want to support my allies but it seems like the more selfish I play the more I win which is of course the goal.

Spot on. You need to do what's best for yourself and the match as a whole. Helping your teammates be successful at the expense of either of those things doesn't accomplish anything.

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2 hours ago, Daerlon said:

Being a good custodian of your hitpoints is never selfish. A 2v2 engagement where you pull out and leave your low HP teammate alone can be a tough call, and sometimes pulling out completely is not best. In that case you might open up the engagement range and still try to support your ally or distract the enemies if you can do it safely. But if it's shaping up to be a 3 vs 7 and you're a one-shot, you have no obligation to stay behind and get crushed with allies who have made a bad decision and didn't see where the situation was headed. I see this in the magical forest on Malinovka a lot. A medium tank in the forest against 5 enemies is in a rough spot. A medium tank closer to base spotting for arty and TDs on the other side can make sure those 5 enemies never make it across the open ground from the forest to cap.

Yes, as long as it's a winnable fight I would say it's generally best to try and clear the enemies in front of you first so you don't end up surrounded, but it sounds like we're on the same page.

25 minutes ago, TheLovePanda said:

Spot on. You need to do what's best for yourself and the match as a whole. Helping your teammates be successful at the expense of either of those things doesn't accomplish anything.

And this is where I find myself in an odd position because it hasn't been until recently that these became the same thing. As a 49% Orange-yellow player your value to the team is statistically a wash so me dying and an average teammate living gave us the same chance to win generally. Now I've improved to the point where I actually can carry games if I stay alive where the average wot player I might be saving can't.

Obviously specific situations differ but in the stastistically average case with the only constant being myself as a player I think I'm starting to get what these "1v29" guys are talking about. Maybe 1v15v14 is more accurate.

Thanks for your responses.

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I feel like you need to be confident that you can win all your duels with your hp relatively intact. When you get the feel for that you will be able to tell what fights can be won and which ones cant/can but with too much hp loss.

As for flexing you need to realize that its not only getting back to decap. Its getting to any position that is more advantageus than the one you are currently at. 

Keep an eye on the minimap and if you are the first tank enemy will see move away. If allies around you are low hp and enemy has high hp move away. Theres no point in losing 1200hp for two shots worth of dmg becouse once your allies die its unlikely youll be able to safely retreat.

Always keep in mind that this is strategy and not a shooter. Yeah you can sometimes shoot your way out of trouble but that will more often leave you dead with 1000dmg done than not. Outsmart your opponents. Outposition the, outplay them.

Fuck your allies they are no use to you other than the hp they have. Make sure its easier for enemies to shoot your teammates than you but stay close enough that you can still shoot them while they are dealing with your team. And no need to feel bad about it. If any of your allies is good enough to make a difference he will also use pubbies as meatshields which means you will be using potatoes to influence the match more than what they could do on their own.

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14 hours ago, Gr1nch_1 said:

I feel like you need to be confident that you can win all your duels with your hp relatively intact. When you get the feel for that you will be able to tell what fights can be won and which ones cant/can but with too much hp loss.

...

Well put, I think this is a bit part of it. Another piece of the mental block that gets in the way of (lets say intermediate?) players or at least myself is once you start dealing damage to the enemy stopping to move can be stressful. If a battle isn't going really well and you need to move it can feel like the time that you're not shooting isn't making the enemy weaker and so you have this impulse to stay put and keep firing even tho you could get more damage off overall if you wait and move. If your team's overall HP is going down and your enemies' isn't it really makes you impulsively want to do too much and make incorrect reads sometimes because its a really crappy feeling when you relocate only to find that by the time you're in your better position all your support is gone and you need to keep moving. I had a botched carry in my t32 or prohk where I decided to yolo a 50 100 because I couldn't in the moment figure out what position would have been a strong one and my allies were crumbling around me.

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