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Official AWBW tier list by Hellraider

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Official AWBW tier list by Hellraider

Post  Iordor on Tue Jul 29, 2014 3:22 pm

First topic message reminder :

Official AWBW CO Tier List by Hellraider

This Tier List will, or at least should, serve as template for all future events on AWBW.

Introduction
While any sort of CO ranking can't be entirely accurate due to trend changes, metagame-development and mapdependency, this list should serve as a very good starting point. It depicts the relative CO strength on an average map, meaning 15k-25k income, 2-4 bases per side, average terrain, available airports and non-relevant naval battle. Any kind of changes of CO strength depending on certain map features will be noted. I'll be using 6 tiers to classify the COs, namely Broken Tier, Luck Tier and Tier 1-5. The Brokens and the luck COs generally won't be used in competitions, the former due to their extreme strength and the latter due to their reliability on luck. For that reason, they will be simply listed and no clarification on their exact abilities will be given.

To account for the map dependency of the COs, I added a few paragraphs to each CO explaining on what sort of maps they shine on.

The tier list applies to 2-player maps outside of FoW, with 1000 income per property and banned Black Bombs. The "average" map that this tier list is generally based on has 17k-22k income, 3 bases and at least one airport per side, 2-3 at least partly connected fronts and no contested key properties.


CO Tier List
Broken Tier

Kanbei, Colin, Sensei, Grit, Hachi, Javier2T+

Luck Tier

Nell, Flak, Jugger

Tier 1 (Top Tier)

Sturm, Von Bolt, Javier1T, Sasha, Hawke

Tier 2 (High Tier)

Eagle, Olaf, Max

Tier 3 (Mid Tier)

Andy, Drake, Kindle, Lash, Sami

Tier 4 (Low Tier)

Rachel, Grimm, Adder

Tier 5 (Bottom Tier)

Jake, Jess, Sonja, Javier0T, Koal


Explanation
Note, this tier list is only a guideline and strongly reflects what sort of maps are being played on currently. Nearly no competition will have banlists that are an exact copy of what stands above, as every map has unique features that serve to make certain COs stronger or weaker. In this section, I want to elaborate on these features as well as give the general reasons for why the COs are placed as they are.

Tier 1 (Top Tier)

Sturm

Sturm is a CO that will often be banned even in this tier, as his perfect movement has the potential to break the game if the terrain is heavy enough. He also benefits from terrain defence because it works well together with his day to day. Likewise, he almost need towers as desperately as Javier as it gives him a bigger relative boost to his attack. The maps where Sturm will be played on are few, as they need to have enough heavy terrain to make him useful, but not enough to make him look overpowered and therefore banned.

Von Bolt

110/110 Stats and an overpriced SCOP lead to VB's usefulness being indirectly proportional to the size of the map. Small maps without towers, without airports, with open fronts and only 2 bases are his ideal feeding ground, as they promote the tank/infantry battles where he has a good chance to run over his opponent with his superior stats. Anything that reduces the impact of his enhanced defence, for instance copters, indirects, heavy tanks etc. will make him weaker. Not being able to turn his stats into a capture phase advantage is also a good sign that you might not want to pick him on the map in question.

Javier1T

While Javier's d2d is decent, the relevant only kicks in after capturing the tower, meaning that he is weak in the capture phase. His strength lies in his COP that allows him to attack without taking much damage in the following turn, which also means that you don't miss out on too much charge during your COP, a problem that haunts many powers. Javier is useable on a wide variety of maps, bar the smallest and the largest ones, as the former may have him dead before his d2d or his COP kicks in, while the latter make it hard for him to do enough damage before stronger powers are charged.

Sasha

Similar to Javier, Sasha can be used on many maps. The ones where she is best can be tricky to spot, as they are the ones where her early vehicle advantage allows her to take a positional advantage big enough to gain a property advantage. Her COP gives her fairly regular minor boosts while delaying the opponents powers, making her a good counter to COs such as Eagle and Hawke. Her SCOP, which I haven't seen used once yet, might have it's uses especially against COs with bad powers, but suffers from the fact that you are spending 6 stars for an advantage that does not have an immediate effect on the battle.
She might not enjoy maps where infantry brawls decide over contested cities, as she might find herself without her standard income advantage soon. Therefore, she is rarely picked on smaller maps.

Hawke

While he probably won't see much play, his d2d is at least decent enough to let him hang on (and most importantly, do damage) in this tier. His SCOP is often game-winning, meaning that Hawke will do better on larger maps with more unit buildup and less heated brawling. On smaller maps he might drop a tier, although his d2d makes him good even then.

Tier 2 (High Tier)

Eagle

Eagle has the hardest I-Win-Button in the game, but he suffers from a d2d that is limited to air units, sometimes making it hard for him to survive long enough to use it. Big maps are his friends, and maps with prominent copters might make him more useful than his alternative, Olaf.

Olaf

Very similar to Eagle, Olaf often wins the game with his SCOP. The obvious differences are that it is 2 stars cheaper, but also overall weaker in effect. The more subtle difference lies in the fact that Olaf's SCOP can sometimes be better at evening a game up. If there are only few vehicles around, its advantage is that the snow will prevent many units from attacking (especially infantry), thereby conserving units and limiting charge.

Max

It is more than obvious if I say that Max likes maps that favor direct units. Open fronts that allow tanks to move between them and copters that can outmaneuvre Anti-Air units are perfect for him. While he is placed here because many maps allow that sort of effectiveness currently, Max can easily drop one or two tiers if the map is too big, has too many chokes or has completely divided fronts. A tower allows Max to OHKO road/shoal infantry with an uncertainty, which can be useful but is slightly overrated.

Tier 3 (Mid Tier)

Andy

Andy's one and only strength is his SCOP. The threat of being able to repair up units makes it possible for him to launch attacks or take positions that would be impossible for any other CO. He is not overly mapdependent and will stay similar in strength, but prefers not too small maps, optimally without tower.

Drake

Drake is mostly a weaker Olaf, suffering from the fact that having only 80/100 copters can really hurt (lack of copter + tank 2HKOs especially) and that rain is inferior to snow. Still, mass damage is always a force to be reckoned with. Maps with prominent airports can hurt him, as Drake wants to avoid countering copters with his own copters, but it is more important that the map is big enough to allow enough units and therefore charge.

Kindle

Her d2d is mainly useful when fighting for contested properties with infantry, usually being rather irrelevant apart from that. As her COP is one that does not gain efficiency with more units around, Kindle does well on smaller maps with high property density, optimally including contested ones. She is also playable on bigger maps if the fronts have enough properties that are hard to avoid, as she then has decent d2d, COP and SCOP.

Lash

As her d2d is directly linked to terrain defence, Lash's strength depends heavily on the map and she can go up or down a tier depending on that. Apart from overall heavy terrain, she likes having no airports, relevant 2HKOs onto key cities, contested properties and prefers smaller maps due to her rather underwhelming powers.

Sami

Sami is a rather special case, as she is a CO where the player has to shift away from the common tank-heavy playstyle to use her to full effect. She is decent in this tier simply with enough infantry around, and might go up if there are heavily contested properties, relevant areas where vehicles can't reach and/or bases that are close enough to the front to allow mechs. On any map that either is tank(copter)-friendly (such as 2-base maps) and/or are big enough to allow vehicle buildup before infantry can start fighting Sami will drop down one, in extreme cases even two tiers.

Tier 4 (Low Tier)

Rachel

On medium to bigger maps, Rachel basically has inferior mass damage assuming that the opponent knows how to split against the missiles (and the situation allows it). Rachel thrives on maps that are small enough to make her SCOP hit well, but also big enough to allow enough charge to be gained before the game is decided and for the missiles to be relevant. Under the correct circumstances, she can go up a tier.

Grimm

While Grimm technically prefers low terrain due to his d2d, its main effect is to change the way the game is played by granting both players 2HKOs everywhere, making it impossible to sit on cities and hard to shield indirects. His innate strength comes from his (S)COP, which allow his units to wreck everything in sight. Unfortunately for him they come without any sort of defensive advantage, meaning that it is very hard for him to find good opportunities to use his powers. They have to be used early enough so that the attack boost actually allows him to cripple enough of the opponents army. Therefore, Grimm rather wants smaller maps as larger maps might make it harder for him to find an opening, and also allow the opponent to charge potentially stronger powers.

Adder

The main strength of Adder's COP, and therefore himself, is that it allows him to slaughter infantry with his own. For that to be possible the map has to be open enough to have enough attack angles. As it is only 2 stars, smaller maps are of advantage as they will allow Adder to gain a quick advantage without charging longer CO bars. Being able to use Mechs to decent effect is an additional perk that comes into effect on maps that allow for it.

Tier 5 (Bottom Tier)

Jake

Jake can do decently on 1T maps where plains next to cities allow him safe 2HKOs, or on maps with a lot of plains overall. While his COP can be used as a threat, it usually does nothing, leaving him with a SCOP that is only really useful if the map has enough plains. To sum it up, plains are good for Jake.

Jess

90/100 infantry is a absolutely horrible d2d, making her useful only on a select few maps where having infantry with reduced attack doesn't absolutely cripple you. These include 2-base maps as well as maps with higher starting income and maps where vehicles reach the front before infantry do.

Sonja

Sonja is actually a decent CO, but her negative luck makes it nearly impossible to actually play with her. She does best on tower- and airportless maps that favor tankspam, as her absurdly good SCOP will profit from that.

Javier0T

I suppose he is decent if you want to walk into indirect range, but I doubt that being able to do so for one turn makes him worth a pick.

Koal

For the most part, Koal plays as Adder with a 50% more expensive COP. However, he does have a niche in road-heavy maps, where his powers allow him to do a decent amount of damage.
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Re: Official AWBW tier list by Hellraider

Post  InvincibleXI on Sun Feb 15, 2015 10:27 am

In this game: http://awbw.amarriner.com/game.php?games_id=221886 Kindle more or less overpowered Rachel, note in particular the turn after this: http://awbw.amarriner.com/replay.php?games_id=221886&ndx=19 where Kindle's COP allows me to focus on dealing damage instead of stopping the capturing infantry (also the delightful, if quite irrelevant full HP infantry OHKO from city to road), and establish a pretty nice infantry wall, apart from the damage I've dealt, roughly 5k worth, of which nearly all is deducted from his funds to spend next turn. This wasn't devastating for sure as my opponent avoided danger zones (mostly leaving units off cities, and away from cities that can be reached by dangerous units), but still was very good for 3 stars, and the fact that it could easily have been worse suggests once more that Kindle's COP really gives Rachel trouble.

Rachel's not very useful COP means she's got to wait twice the time during which the battle goes from close to a critical. Note also when Rachel's SCOP finally comes out after this: http://awbw.amarriner.com/replay.php?games_id=221886&ndx=22, 1 missile hits that big lump of (very low HP) infantry (together with her own tank, which obviously should have been moved away first, but still), 1 missile hits my tank, AA and infantry back away from the front, and only 1 missile hits the front line proper, hitting a full HP tank and BCpter and a crippled tank, and her own artillery. Much thanks to WalkerBoh for the info about how the missiles work, without which the SCOP would probably have been a lot scarier.

Finally, note when Kindle's COP is fully charged again here: http://awbw.amarriner.com/replay.php?games_id=221886&ndx=25, it's enough for a breakthrough that smashes the south front, proving lethal even though my opponent has once again generally been quite careful to mitigate the effects of the COP. And despite the devastation, Rachel still has nowhere near enough to charge her SCOP. Rachel's one D2D advantage has been handled pretty well by not permitting her to get any central cities, note the kamikaze tank charge here to stop that: http://awbw.amarriner.com/replay.php?games_id=221886&ndx=14. Not sure it was the right move, but it did turn out well and stop a potential headache. Furthermore, attempts to use the D2D to recuperate will hurt if Kindle can get her COP that turn.

So in conclusion I think this game suggests that Kindle is significantly stronger than Rachel (at least in this map). Not sure how much that is a surprise, since I have the impression she's higher ranked generally anyway, but interesting still I think.

(PS: anyone have any idea how my opponent managed to finish off my BCpter after Rachel's SCOP? Doesn't seem like it could have been 2 missiles, the tank and AA didn't attack me, so I'm pretty puzzled as to how it happened. 4 HP BCpter doing 3HP, and 2 infantry somehow killing 1 HP each?)

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Re: Official AWBW tier list by Hellraider

Post  Xmo5 on Sun Feb 15, 2015 10:59 am

InvincibleXI wrote:(PS: anyone have any idea how my opponent managed to finish off my BCpter after Rachel's SCOP? Doesn't seem like it could have been 2 missiles, the tank and AA didn't attack me, so I'm pretty puzzled as to how it happened. 4 HP BCpter doing 3HP, and 2 infantry somehow killing 1 HP each?)

It would have required a bit of luck, but that's entirely possible. My first check on the damage calculator had the copter doing (with luck) 31% followed by (again, with luck) 12% by the 10 HP infantry. Theoretically the two infantry together could have done 2 HP damage, though I wonder whether the 2HP infantry even had to attack if he was lucky enough. It might have just been used to shield his tank instead.

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Re: Official AWBW tier list by Hellraider

Post  InvincibleXI on Sun Feb 15, 2015 11:38 am

Xmo5 wrote:It would have required a bit of luck, but that's entirely possible. My first check on the damage calculator had the copter doing (with luck) 31% followed by (again, with luck) 12% by the 10 HP infantry. Theoretically the two infantry together could have done 2 HP damage, though I wonder whether the 2HP infantry even had to attack if he was lucky enough. It might have just been used to shield his tank instead.

Yeah, 31% with luck is very possible, leading to a 2 HP BCptr. 12% is also possible, which still leaves 1 HP (the half HP percentages don't stack even within the same turn for different attacks right?) How a 2HP infantry can do 10% damage is pretty surprising though. Using the formula with max luck: D%= 7x((110+9)/100)x0.2]= less than 2%. Unless either of the previous attacks can be converted to the 40%/20% which would be surprising too since they started at less than 30/10% respectively.

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Re: Official AWBW tier list by Hellraider

Post  WalkerBoh on Sun Feb 15, 2015 6:29 pm

The half percentages do stack. For the purposes of damage its a 100-pt scale, but HP is only displayed on a 10-pt scale for the purposes of attacking and capturing, etc.

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Re: Official AWBW tier list by Hellraider

Post  InvincibleXI on Sun Feb 15, 2015 11:51 pm

Oh I see, that's interesting. The stacking is only for the same turn though? Say a unit at 10 hp loses 0.3 hp from 4 different attacks, it will definitely drop to 9 hp? If it's hit by another 8% next turn, will it definitely fall to 8. The reason why I though it didn't stack was because I've tried hitting units I thought were nearly dead before, like saying 1HP, but would be 0.1 HP or something, without finishing it off when my attack said 1-3% fairly often. Especially after a missile has hit a 1-3HP unit, in theory it should be at 0.1 HP right? It didn't always seem to work that way so I assumed the attacks were independent luck.

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Re: Official AWBW tier list by Hellraider

Post  Best Sakuya NA on Fri Feb 20, 2015 12:05 am

WalkerBoh wrote:
Sandland
Hm this one got screwed up, the High Tier COs aren't banned in the Low Tier setting. I'll fix that.


That one was my bad, sorry. Thanks for the fix.

Anyways. Threads like these are why I love to support Advance Wars by Web. Please, keep suggestions and feedback like this coming. The Rachel debate in general is interesting, and it is always wonderful to hear from all of the AWBW community, but especially our high level players. I, and others on the Map Committee, genuinely appreciate it. That's why this forum is here, after all, haha.
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Re: Official AWBW tier list by Hellraider

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