Guide D-Day mission (hard)

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Guide D-Day mission (hard)

Postby Pieterr » 30 Jul 2015, 09:52

Guide D-Day Mission (hard)

Introduction
At this moment you can play 4 missions: Stalingrad, Iwo Jima, Gazala and D-Day. Stalingrad (hard) and Iwo Jima (hard) are considered tough but reasonable and doable. The D-Day mission (hard) is considered to be tougher. Gazala should be the toughest of all four. This post is about the D-day mission (hard). So what makes this mission tough? In this thread I’ll try to explain this and share my thoughts on tactics and strategy with you.

The mission, the cost and the benefits.
The D-Day mission (hard) contains 4 battles. To play it you’ll have to pay 200 gold.
The first, second and third battle you’ve won will return (each) about 25-35 gold of what you’ve paid. So after winning the 3rd battle you’ll be around 100 gold.
After winning the second and third battle you’ll get free cards as well. Mostly these cards are commons and uncommon.
After winning the 4th battle you’ll get a general pack. This is much better than the rewards you’ll get after completing the other hard missions:. On both Stalingrad (hard) and Iwo Jima (hard) you’ll get a 50%/50% chance on a general pack. If you’re lucky you might even get a special portrait frame.
If you would sell all the cards you’ve gained after winning this mission, you’d end up with a bit more than 200 gold (at least this is my experience).
If you’re a member of a platoon winning a hard mission will provide the platoon also with 600 platoon points. Once a week you’ll get 10% returned to you in gold. Which is another 60 gold.
However, you’ll probably lose more of these missions than you’ll win so in the end your loss of gold is considerably. And if not, then I suggest you’ll write a thread about this mission because I’m very anxious to know how I could improve my chances on this particular mission.

A first look at the deck you’ll be playing
Your deck consist combined allied forces. This means some Americans and some British troops. The difficulty of this deck is further best explained when you’d compare it to the decks you’ll play in the other missions:
Mission Stalingrad: Only infantry units
Mission Iwo Jima: Primary infantry units, some armor
Mission D-Day: Infantry, armored and aircraft units

One of the things similar to the other missions is that you have to play (and win) 4 battles again. The other thing is that the deck you’ll be playing throughout these 4 missions won’t change. Let’s take a further look to the deck:
I’m counting 19 units, 6 items and 5 orders (1 legend, 5 epics, 12 rares, 4 uncommons and 8 commons).
If you’d divide the units in categories you’ll see that you have:
- 5 planes (1 legend, 2 epics and 2 rares);
- 6 armor (4 rares, 2 uncommons);
- 8 Infantry (2 epics, 4 rares and 2 commons).
So if you’d take the above categorization in consideration than you’d probably come to the conclusion that playing your planes would be your best option to achieve victory. Unfortunately things are not that easy…

A first look at the 4 battles ahead
You will start the first battle with 100 life points. This is 20 more life points than playing Stalingrad. But just like Stalingrad: These points can only decrease. There is no way to gain life points.
Your German enemy starts the 1st battle with 60 life points, starts the 2nd battle with 75 life points and starts the 3rd battle with 90 life points and the 4th (and final) battle with 100 life points. That’s 325 German life points that has to be taken care of.
Just like the (hard) mission in Stalingrad you’ll get 3 action points on each of your turns. Your German has 4 action points each turn in the first two battles. In the 3rd and 4th battle it has 5 action points each turn. So there is not much difference there.

The difficulty about planes
Although the best cards in your deck seem to be the planes you have, the choice for playing these cards isn’t always the best decision you can make. First thing you need to know about planes is that their damage cannot be blocked by units which aren’t planes themselves or have a special ability that allows them to do so.
Well, isn’t this great? My planes deliver their damage right in my German enemies face,… Yes, sure it’s nice, but you have to realize that you’ll spare the lives of the troops your enemy has in both the front and support line. In other words: You’re not killing anything! As a matter of a fact you’re letting these troops build up forces. These same enemy troops are going to backfire on you (and your planes) as soon as the Germans will start their turn.
Another risk you’ll take by playing a plane is that the Germans will send a unit with the blitzkrieg ability to face it. The result of this is that your plane is safe (it doesn’t take damage from the blitzkrieg unit) but you’ll take all the damage. If this mission would have been just 1 battle than it would have been a race to the bottom. But It isn’t: You’ve got 4 battles to deal with and taking a lot of damage in the first 3 battles isn’t a good idea.
Besides this all, the German deck is very good in handling enemy planes: It has Flakpanzers, planes of their own, Ghost attacks, Brandenburgers and it can get units very fast to the front line.

Maneuver
This is the only mission in which you get to maneuver units. The Spitfire already has this ability by itself. Keep in mind what I’ve written about the use of planes. All the other units in your deck can get maneuverability once you’ve equipped them with the précised map.
This is an ability that your German opponent doesn’t have: Its army is static. So this is an advantage you have over your enemy. Make this advantage useful for you!

Flag Raising (101st airborne infantry)
Your deck holds 2 epic infantry units named: “101st airborne infantry”. These units don’t take damage and can’t be destroyed for 1 turn only. That’s already nice but they will also do their damage when attacked. So this is a really nice ally to have on your side.
When you’ll play this card you will probably want to use their indestructibility and their damage-doing strength. So don’t let it face an enemy plane or an enemy unit that has the blitzkrieg ability.
Some people say that this unit shouldn’t be promoted. As soon as it dies it goes back in the pack and you’ll have another chance of playing this card so that it can be indestructible again. So let’s have a look at it.
The stats of this infantry card is 5/3 (being a soldier).So it’ll do 5 damage. The toughness of this soldier is 3. But being indestructible this figure isn’t that relevant. So most of the time this is how the life of the 101st airborne infantry looks like:
- you play it, it gets to be indestructible;
- your enemy starts its turn, it’s still indestructible and it does 5 damage to an enemy unit;
- your turn starts, your 101st airborne infantry loses its indestructibility;
- your 101st airborne infantry engages, deals another 5 damage and gets killed in combat….
Overall it does (2 x 5 =) 10 damage.
If you’d promote your 101st to major it gets power 7, which means it’ll do 14 damage. A general unit has power 10. That’s a potential of 20 damage!
Taking this short life-expectation of this unit into consideration than you have realize that promoting this unit is costly. Promoting it to a major costs 2 action points but this could be reduced to 1 by playing the “better equipment” card. Promoting it to a general will always cost 2 action points.
After it got its promotion and dies you have to get lucky by retrieving it back from your pack.
So is it wise to promote this unit or should your action points better be spend otherwise? The answer to this question is (to my opinion) is that it depends…
First of all, when it comes to promoting units, there are other units that I prefer to promote. Units that have a better chance to last. Second I like to play this unit as a troubleshooter. So it goes to most nasty spot in the support line. Of course, I’d love my 101st airborne to kill of its opponent. But if its toughness is more than 10 than it won’t kill. In that case (and if possible) I have to help this unit out: Promoting is costs 2 action points, equipping it costs only 1. So these are the choices I bother myself with.

Better Equipment
Well this is probably the best card in your pack! You’ll be happy every time this order shows up. This card can reduce the cost of promoting a soldier to a major. So this means you’ve got an additional action point to spend. There are probably some situations in which you might choose not to use this card. However most of the time I’d consider not using this card a waste of resources.

A first look at strategy
This is not a mission like Stalingrad: Snipers hardly get damaged. Your units will take damage! It’s also not a mission like Iwo Jima where you can gain live and have to outlast your enemy for some turns. This is a fight the bitter end. In battles 1 and 2 the Germans have 4 action points to spend each turn, in battles 3 and 4 it is 5 action points each turn.

The first 2 battles is all about saving life points. Make sure you don’t get hurt too much. You’ll need your life points in the 3rd and 4th battle. The final 2 battles is (again) a race against the clock: You can try and built up a field position and outlast the German forces. I'm not saying that this cannot be done. But in most cases it is likely that you armored and infantry units will eventually be no match for the Germans. So you’ll have to rush in your planes and hopefully they’ll succeed in accomplishing these mission for you.
This is basically in short the strategy I use:
- The first 2 battles are armored / infantry battles;
- The final 2 battles is about killing off your opponent with planes and/or armor?
For this reason I’m splitting these battles up,…..

The first two battles
As I’ve pointed out so far: be careful when playing aircraft. These two battles are all about not losing life points! So try and hold the lines, if you can. The German are very fast these battles. To give you an impression how the Germans will rush upon your forces I’ll show you some of the units you’ll encounter in these battles:
2 Hetzers (the worst of all), it rushes even slow units to the frontline
2 Fallschrim Divisions, it has deploy-ability and throws grenades at you
2 Flieger Divisions, it has deploy-ability
2 SDKFZ Mules, it has deploy-ability.

As your primary goal should be to try not to lose life points you should fill your support line with units that will prevent this and hopefully last some turns. Your secondary goal is to try killing off all enemy units by the end of your turn. Finally: If you can finish a battle then do so: Do not let the battle last an unnecessary extra turn.

Your primary units to deploy are:
- 101st airborne infantry
- Churchill IV
- M22 Locust
- 1st Marine Corps

Churchill IV
This definitely my favorite unit to deploy during the first 2 missions! Although it is not a unit that’ll deal much damage by itself, it is a reliable unit because it can absorb quite some damage before it dies. It has the reinforced ability. Besides that it heals itself on the start of each of your turns, (this is called the repair ability). A soldier heals 1 damage, a major heals 2 damage and a general unit heals 3 damage each turn. Equip this tank with a précised map and a Bazooka and you’ve got the best maneuverable troubleshooter in this mission(to my opinion the best you can get).
You’ll learn to love the combination of being reinforced and repaired every turn. So do your math properly.

M22 Locust
This the one of the 2 units with brutality that’s in your pack. However I don’t play it for its brutality. I like its starting stats: As a rank 1 (soldier) unit it already has 6 power and 6 toughness. For this reason it is a good ally to have on your side. Should you promote this unit? If that’s what it takes to keep the line? Then promote it! If you have better alternatives for your action points (which I almost always have) then don’t.

1st Marine Corps
This also a very reliable defender. First thing you’ll notice about this unit is that its promotion cost (to rank 2) is only 1 action point. It also reduces the strength of an enemy unit when it comes into play. A soldier will the reduce the power and toughness of enemy unit by 1, a major by 2 and a general by 3. Use this ability wisely, it offers you sometimes difficult choices:
- Do I kill an enemy unit with it?
- If I use this ability on an enemy unit, can my (other) unit then finish him off?
- Can I save a friendly unit with it so that it can fight for me another day?

Another thing about this units ability is that the effect of this ability will be lost once the unit you’ve played it on gets promoted. So if you can’t let it synchronize with the other units you have in play or kill enemy units with it then you’d preferably want to use this ability on an enemy 3rd rank (general) unit.
Last thing I wish to mention about this unit is about equipping it. I only equip it if it needs to do a killing for me or if I don’t have any other option.

The start in the first two battles
Of course you will not always get the cards (which I consider primary) in your first turn. If you manage to fill all the 3 slots in the support line than you’ve got a really nice first draw. If you manage to only fill the left and the middle slot than there’s not much to worry about either. The Germans will not always fill their 3 slots. Most of the time they’ll just send troops to face the units you’ve placed. (leaving also 1 slot open). So it’s really not bad to use your better equipment card if you’ve got in your first turn. It also not bad if you promote a marine corps in your first turn. Finally equipping a Churchill IV tank in your first turn isn’t bad either. On the contrary!
It all depends on the cards you’ve got and the choices you can make.

Let’s discuss a few other cards as well,….

M26 Pershing
This is also a very reliable (hard to kill) defender. And it has low promotion costs! Then why shouldn’t this unit be a primary unit to select?
This unit is slow! This means that it’ll start its life during game play as a defender. This is risky and dangerous. Remember that your primary goal on these first 2 battles is not to lose life points. If you play this unit and the Germans oppose it with a plane, a blitzkrieg-unit or a fallschrim division than you’re a sitting duck swallowing up damage and grenades. The best way to get into play is this:
1 first play a Churchill IV tank;
2 promote it and/or equip it, make it strong;
3 then play a M26 Pershing in the support line behind it;
4 equip the Churchill IV with a précised map, if you haven’t done this already;
5 promote the M26 Pershing to at least rank 2;
6 when the M26 is ready to move to the front line move the Churchill to another position.
Once you’ve got this tank into the frontline (and equipped it) you’ll notice that this is also a very good ally to have on your side. Almost as good as the Churchill IV except this unit doesn’t heal itself.

29th Infantry
This infantry unit is the only unit in your deck with the deploy ability. This ability allows this unit to start in the front line immediately. It has a very weak toughness. In most of the battles it gets killed in action when it gets involved in combat. Sometimes that’s the same turn it got played, sometimes the next turn when the Germans counterattack.
Then why bother to spend an action point on such a suicidal infantry unit? The answer to this question is very simple: You play this unit (only) for its deploy ability. This makes it a sort of fire brigade. This is the only unit you’ve got which will instantly solve problems on your front line straight from your hand. That makes this unit an answer to enemy planes and units with the blitzkrieg ability. You’ll notice (very often) that this unit will not do enough damage to kill off its opposing enemy. Then what? In that case there are new choices that have to be made,… Such like:
- Can I combine this card with an incoming 1st Marine Corps? Will it then do the necessary killing for me?
- Do I have cards to equip this unit? Will it then do the necessary killing for me?
- If I promote this unit, then does it kill?

Let’s take a look at these addition questions,…
The combination incoming Marine Corps <-> 29th infantry is great if it allows the 29th infantry to do the necessary kill! This means that you’ve spend 2 action points, made a frontline killing, filled a slot in your support line and you’ve got one more action point to spend.
Equipping this unit so it can take care of the enemy unit you oppose it to means basically a loss of 2 action points. Except you get 1 killing in return. Still you’ve 1 action point left which you’ll probably need to fill the gap in the support line. Promoting this unit (without the better equipment card) means that you are going to spend all your action points this turn on only this unit. Of course when it returns to you, it’ll still be promoted. Still I think this is a last resort action. Most of the time I have better alternatives for my action points.

To conclude:
This unit fills a slot and deals instantly damage;
It’s easy to kill this unit. This isn’t a problem as long as you don’t get damaged: Just make sure that you’ve got a new unit ready in the support line behind it;
Because of its deploy ability this unit can function as a fire brigade: It can instantly do damage! This however can be costly. So you should ask yourself: Is it necessary? Can the damage be prevented otherwise. A “code interception” or a “play ball” card can be a better and cheaper solution.

No.2 Commando
This infantry unit has 2 abilities: It has brutality and it has sabotage. Especially this last named ability will be the reason you’ll deploy this unit. This ability will remove all items on an enemy unit. If an enemy unit has already taken damage and the only reason it is still alive is because of the equipment it has then it’ll die when it gets its items removed.
The German army equips its troops with Iron crosses, grenades and flame throwers. These enemy troops can grow very big in very short time. Grenades will cause instantly damage on you the next turn if you don’t take care of these troops which have been equipped with it.
If you don’t have other units to fill your slots with then put it into play and hopefully it’ll deal some brutality damage for you. Otherwise leave this fellow in your deck so that it’ll improve your chances when it comes to you when you’ll need it the most.

The 3rd and 4th (final) Battle(s)
Finishing the first 2 battles shouldn’t be a problem at all. The question is more like:”With how many life points can I start the final 2 battles?”
- Is it 90+, then it’s excellent;
- Is it 80+, then it’s still good;
- Is it 70+, then it’s reasonable;
- Is it 60+, then you’ve had very bad luck during the first two battles or you’ve lost unnecessary life points and you’ve should improve your skills on the free missions to get a better result in the future.

I can’t, of course, predict what the German army will throw at you during the last 2 battles. Sometimes I only loose 10-15 life points in one of these final battles. I consider this an exception to the rule. So starting with (just) 60 life points is not a guarantee that you can’t achieve a victory in battle 4, but I consider my chances to it not very good.

The second question you should ask yourself is about the first hand you get. What am I going to play? Which options do I have. To get you started I’ll give you a few suggestions:

- Keep in mind that you are going to face enemy Brandburgers.
- Confusion is also a card you can expect.

This is preferably what I play:
- Hell’s angels + better equipment + item;
- Hell’s angel + promotion;
- P-51 Mustang + better equipment + item + another item;
- P-51 Mustang + promotion + item;
- Spitfire + better equipment + item (fighting knife / bazooka);
- Churchill IV + better equipment + item;
- Churchill IV + better equipment + 101st;
- Churchill IV + promotion;
- M26 + promotion + item;
- M26 + promotion + 101st;
- 1st Marine Corps + promotion + item;
- 1st Marine Corps + promotion + 101st;
- 101st + 2 other primary units

If you take a look at these option, as I’ve pointed out above, you’ll notice that I have a rank 2 (major) unit in play by the end of my first turn (with the exception of the last option, in this case I’ve got 3 rank 1 soldier units in play). The effect of an enemy Brandenburger on the first German turn is zero: It can’t kill a rank 2 (major) unit yet and it also can’t kill the 101st because this unit is still protected by its flag raising ability and is therefore indestructible. Although the Brandenburger is a very powerful enemy unit the German army doesn’t use its capability quite well. I’ve seen 2 Brandenburgers try to eliminate the same indestructible 101st. I’ve also seen that the German army was spending action points on a ghost attack to kill the 101st.
A few more thing about enemy Brandenburgers: Don’t just focus on these units! Everybody knows that they are a promise to trouble and your enemy has them at his disposal. Learn to live and deal with it! The unit itself doesn’t cause much damage so it probably won’t kill your planes. Hopefully this’ll buy you time to do plenty damage yourself.
The last thing I wish to mention is that you keep track of these Brandenburgers. There are 2 of these units inside the German deck. When both of these units are in play then you can play a soldier unit without having to worry that it will be instantly killed. If both of these units are in the German deck then you should know the ranks of both these units and take them into consideration on the choices you make when you’re spending your action points.

Armor or planes?
If your first hand contains just armor or just planes then the decision is quickly made. But what will you decide when you can choose between an armored unit and aircraft?
What would your decision be when you can show up with rank 2 (major) Churchill IV or a rank 2 (major) P-51 Mustang (not equipped)?
I’d choose a Churchill IV unit,…
The P-51 Mustang will kill itself if it gets “confused”, besides that I like to have a Churchill IV armor on my side and equip it with a bazooka and/or a précised map. Most of the time this is one slot less to worry about. I’ll go for the armor in that case and wait for better opportunities to show up.

Code Interception
This card will cost slow on an enemy unit for 1 action point. It’ll cast slow on all enemy units for 2 action points. This means that enemy units will be moved back (if possible) to the support line and can’t attack.
Basically this card buys time for you. Your aircraft is dealing damage straight into your enemies face and the unit facing can’t attack your aircraft for 1 turn. You could also say that this card is (almost) a promise that your aircraft is going to strike twice! As I’ve pointed out before, you have to realize that you’re not eliminating enemy units and that they’ll get a chance to build up force. Hopefully (and by then) you’ve inflicted enough damage that the victory of this battle is in your grasp. If rushing with planes is the tactic than this card might come in quite handy.
There’s a difference between quite handy and very useful. Because of the fact that this card was also a bit of an eye-opener to me I’d like to take the opportunity and share this with you.
Imagine:
Germany has a (rank 2) major Tiger II (9/9) in the support line (left slot);
Germany has a (rank 3) general Messerschitt BF 109 in the front line (middle slot);
Germany has a (rank 2) major Panther equipped with an iron cross and a flamethrower in the frontline (right slot);
Germany has 40 life points left
You’ve got a (rank 3) hell’s angel (10/12) equipped with a précised map (left slot);
You’re at 17 life points;
You know that there are 2 (rank 3) general Brandenburger units in the German deck.
It’s your turn, one of the cards to play is the code interception.
What does this mean?
The answer to this question is that you are probably going to be victorious!
If you spend 2 action points on the code interception all these enemy units are going to be cast slow upon. The Messerschmitt and the panther will have to return to the support line. This means that Germany can’t play new units in its next turn (except for the Fallschrim Division) because of the fact that all the slots in the support line are already filled. So no more worries about (rank 3) general Brandenburgers that will take out your bomber. Meanwhile your bomber will deliver 40 damage in 2 turns which will be enough to achieve the victory.
The only 2 cards between you and the victory is Fallschrim Division and a Ghost Attack. Well, these are odds I’m willing to take.

Play Ball
Although this is a nice way to eliminate enemy armored forces it is better (if possible) to promote your units and let them do the killing for you. Keep in mind that when you've spend 3 action points to kill an enemy (rank 3) general armored unit that this unit returns to the German deck with all its promotions. So when it'll show up again it'll return as a (rank 3) general unit. Eventually the balance between your deck and the German will grow wrong for you and turn against you. So let this card synchronize with your other units in play and the strategy/tactics you play than it is very good (and very often most welcome) addition to your deck.


Thanks for reading (again?). I wish you all a good hunting on the beaches. Hopefully there’ll be waiting a lot of general packs for you.

Greetz,

Pieterr
Last edited by Pieterr on 21 Apr 2016, 10:10, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Guide D-Day mission (hard)

Postby 5Cats » 30 Jul 2015, 22:17

Nice post! I cannot disagree with anything! :)

I thought you said "I win 5 out of 6..." but then looked again and it's 1 in 5 OR 6... I think I'm about 1 in 4? Or the same as you. But I don't play it often so... idk.

The only things I'd add are:
- On Day-4 there's no Hetzers! Hooray! (At least I think so... it's that way in S-Grad) Those things are just the worst.
- The Bergers will target the highest rarity first, almost every time, like, 99% in D-Day? (about 95% in S-Grad?)
Legend > Epic > Others
So if you have an r-2 Churchill and an r-1 101st? An r-2 Berger will hit the 101st, which is a good thing! They seem to sweep from our left to right, so a P-51 in the left slot usually gets hit before a 101st in the right, but not always. The B-17 is a Berger-magnet. The same applies to Directed Damage, again it's "mostly" but not every time.

I don't much like the M-26 Pershing; being slow is bad, specially on days 3 & 4 (as you mentioned). The Maps item does make them better though, since they can at least get out of the way if required!
Maps is a terrific item, often it can help a lot more than it's 1-1/2-2/3-3 would indicate. The Spitfire's inherent Fast skill makes it very useful too. Of course Bazooka's big defense and Tank-killing ability is good!

Cheers!
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Re: Guide D-Day mission (hard)

Postby nAFAI » 31 Jul 2015, 09:06

Great job Pieterr!!

Sticky!
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Re: Guide D-Day mission (hard)

Postby Pieterr » 03 Aug 2015, 20:13

I'm sorry 5cats but you can encounter hetzers in the 4th battle,....
Last edited by Pieterr on 05 Aug 2015, 11:38, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Guide D-Day mission (hard)

Postby 5Cats » 04 Aug 2015, 15:03

Pieterr wrote:I'm sorry 5cats but you can enquêterecht hetzers in the 4th battle,....


Hi Pieter!
That word comes up as "right of inquiry" in the translator, but I guess you mean there ARE Hetzers on Day-4 D-Day Hard.
No wonder I lose a lot!

Looking forward to a new Mission soon :)
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