Flame Tanks and how to counter them

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Home Forums Age of Wonders 3 Discussions Flame Tanks and how to counter them

This topic contains 33 replies, has 14 voices, and was last updated by  Skuggfaxe 5 years, 3 months ago.

Viewing 30 posts - 1 through 30 (of 34 total)
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  • #92442

    Morty
    Member

    While playing the third Commonwealth mission, it seemed to me as if my units were thoroughly decimated by enemy flame tanks in sieges. They can shoot fire every round, even while engaged, and my poor berserkers and monster hunters were burned as they approached. The only counter I found for them were the Dwarven First-Born, but I didn’t have enough of them, and the flame tanks just burned the rest of my troops as the First-Born attacked them. Am I doing something wrong? Or is it just that flame tanks are extremely lethal in sieges and there’s nothing to be done about it?

    #92445

    Raghar
    Member

    You can develop an unhealthy Trebuchet fetish.

    #92446

    Erwin
    Member

    We had somebody at the office who used to spam flame tanks as his main tactic and it was then that we found the cheapest solution… Hellhounds.

    They are fire immune and cheap to get, though you do need the basic fire specialization for it.

    • This reply was modified 1 year ago by  President.
    #92448

    Bob5
    Member

    Dwarf forgepriests and draconian elders also work well. They are fire-immune themselves and can give a good fire protection to other units.

    #92461

    flametanks don’t have reinforced, so they are vulnerable to massed archerfire from behind walls. This is one of the few situations where, because of their high hp, mounted archers are really useful (you are a high elf warlord in commonwealth III, if I remember this right).

    Storm sisters are also excellent, for obvious reasons. As Bob5 says, Forge-priests can make anything have nifty fire protection levels (thoroughbred gryphon riders are very good at this, what with their naturally high resistance. If Edward leads the stack, then you get forge aprons in addition, granting your eagle lions 60% fire resistance).

    #92506

    Morty
    Member

    Well, I already beat the mission by the time I posted the thread, by simply throwing enough units at the tanks. But I’ll keep it all in mind when I’m up against them again.

    #92579

    ffbj
    Member

    If you can hurt the flame enough then send in a spy drone to attack and enemy unit near the flame tank. You can sometimes get a chain reaction explosion. He blowed up real good!

    • This reply was modified 1 year ago by  President.
    #92584

    Cavalry are ace against flametanks. The fiery, explosive death hurts but it’s usually nothing a cavalry unit cannot handle. In an open field battle a small group of cavalry can often kill the tank before it even gets a shot off given how slow a flametank moves and how quickly cavalry can in comparison. Even if the tank gets a shot off, that puts it within perfect charging distance of cav and it will be dead next turn. Sieges are a bit different though seeing as you don’t have that advantage anymore.

    Archers are definitely the best though seeing as flametanks lack the reinforced trait. Two archers can usually either outright kill a flametank, or get it incredibly close to death if they both shoot from x3 and have no range penalties. Then you have the added bonus of the archers not being affected by the explosion.

    #92609

    Garresh
    Member

    I see a lot of open field counters but not a lot of counters for them when they’re behind walls. I’ve never been able to defeat flame tanks on walls as a rogue personally. Even massed shadow stalkers get incinerated by a handful of flame tanks.

    #92611

    Morty
    Member

    Indeed, behind walls those things are just ugly. They’re safe from missile attacks, unless they’re equipped with something to make them ignore line of sight, and they can burn anyone who approaches with relative impunity. The only real counter for them in sieges, it seems, are fire-resistant or at least protected units that can bypass walls and wreck them.

    #92616

    The only real counter for them in sieges, it seems, are fire-resistant or at least protected units that can bypass walls and wreck them.

    seems reasonable enough. For rogues, I’d say use draconian succubi with dragon ancestry/ guardian flames. then the flamers will be totally useless. any succubi will do quite well, as they all can get fire immunity with guardian flames.

    #92619

    Jomungur
    Member

    I feel like people overestimate flame tanks. Sure, ‘throw flames’ is a great ability, but as a human you have the advantage of not clustering your troops (the AI will cluster, which is why flametanks tear them up). At 25 str, it will do an average of 27 damage to a unit with 8 resist. A longbowman, with 3 shots, is less than half the cost and will do an average of 33 damage to a unit with 8 defense and has better range on city walls.

    Flame tanks can’t retaliate. So once you get close, you’ll hit them 3 times without penalty with a melee troop. The explosive death hurts, sure, but generally when you attack stacks of tier 3 units you expect to lose troops. And it’s not unlikely the explosive death will hurt allied troops as well.

    They also cost 140 gold and 30 mana. Personally, I’d rather face 6 flametanks than 6 firstborn or 6 shocktroopers. Actually, even worse would be 2 flametanks and 4 firstborn.

    Lastly, it’s hard to use a flame tank army as attacking force. They move slow and can’t regenerate, which are big disadvantages for using them on the offensive.

    #92620

    Garresh
    Member

    33 damage to a single unit vs 27 damage to at least 2 units. You can say don’t cluster but with how long their range and spread is that’s not so simple. Especially considering their damage and range are both I
    Significantly higher than in Shadow Magic. And if you don’t cluster that means you’re only sending a partial amount of forces in, so if the enemy mixes flamers with melee you can’t do much of anything. Considering on average in medium to large scale fights they do upwards of 70 damage per turn, I really don’t see how they’re not at least a little OP. That said, I don’t see enough dreads in multiplayer to really practice against the strategy. Those I do set tend to loss before their infrastructure can support flame tanks..

    #92621

    Garresh
    Member

    Oh but that is a good point Jomungur. They’re very much a defensivr unit, as they can’t really push the attack much.

    #92623

    Jomungur
    Member

    Well, I play dread a fair amount. I’m not saying they’re not good- they’re definitely good units. But try making them and attacking; it’s not that fun or easy. I prefer to make units that are more versatile; ones that can attack and defend. After all, in multiplayer you never know which you’ll be doing :).

    33 damage to a single unit vs 27 damage to at least 2 units. You can say don’t cluster but with how long their range and spread is that’s not so simple. Especially considering their damage and range are both I

    I understand. Still, I’d rather have 2 longbowmen in terms of defending cities. Certainly when facing a unit with passwall it’s better to have a flametank, but that’s partly because the units with passwall tend to have physical protection.

    And if you’re rogue, maybe use your scoundrels to sabotage them? Scoundrels cost 50 gold, flametanks 140 gold + 3 mana, so pound for pound scoundrels get the better of it.

    #92625

    Garresh
    Member

    They usually can’t close in but if they can then they’re quite good yes.

    If you advance with scoundrels 2 flame ganks can kill off an entire stack in one turn. Best tactic I’ve seen is keep them just out of range, then sprint up a wall, quick dash, and sabotage for great justice. Lol. Still though its not enough. Not nearly.

    #92646

    MrCardholder
    Member

    Has anyone found a good counter for them in the missions? Fighting flametanks and cannons with goblins is not very fair…

    Taking me forever to beat this mission! So annoying. I feel like all the missions have been fairly straightforward and this one is a brick wall.

    #92693

    Morty
    Member

    They do seem to be a more defensive unit, better for roasting approaching units than pushing the attack themselves. Which is kind of weird considering that they’re tanks, but hey, it’s a fantasy game. 😀

    #92736

    Sathra
    Member

    Trebuchets usually work. As Goblins, make craptons of Marauders and use them to draw fire (spread them out and cycle heals) as well. This also messes up the AI’s strategic thinking due to the horde of troops. You can also get Seeker in the Goblin Theocrat mission, so its a good choice to put on Trebs. Or Exalted. As long as you win, they don’t die.

    High Elf Warlord is either Gryphon Riders, Mounted Archers if you can’t get anything better, or trebuchets and Monster Hunters (which have inherent fire resist if I remember right, and an alright melee attack).
    Or Phalanxes. They kill pretty much anything.

    #92747

    embrace
    Member

    @mrcardholder this thread is about the commonwealth mission where you play the high elf warlord, it is not about the elvencourt mission where you play the goblin theocrat.

    in the mission you have problems with, you are doing something wrong if your enemy is able to get many flametanks.
    i guess you are more of a slow builder type of player, but in this mission you have to be fast.

    melkathi wrote quite a good walkthrough for it, you can find it here: http://ageofwonders.com/forums/topic/elven-court-campaign-3-images-minor-spoliers/#post-65288

    #92760

    Epaminondas
    Member

    I still think they should fire every other round or have their damage reduced a bit.

    Also, I am a bit befuddled that people keep saying that Flame Tanks – and Dreadnought units in general – are “slow.” Their movement is 28. Sure, it’s not cavalry speed, but it’s on par with other infantry. So I prefer the term “average” speed, since I consider infantry speed as the “norm.” Of course, I guess it’s semantics, and my perspective is skewed by the fact that I think units in this game are too fast, and hence there are by definition no “slow” units! 😉

    #92784

    Skuggfaxe
    Member

    It needs to ba said but they are without a doubt too effective(leaning towards overpowered imo), the cone is too wide and damage surpassing that of the fire dragon means you can’t use melee effectively against them unless with decent fire protection. The counter obviously is to have ranged units yourself with long range, cannons trebuchets(tier 1 archers will be eaten alive by the flames) They are pretty cheap with -10 cost 126gold and so may be built 1/turn and thus spammable. A group of 4+ tanks together will require your own ranged spamm to beat cost effectively as cavalry wont stand much of a chance unless we’re talking open fields with 90+ hp cavalry. They are bad to face on their own but in a mixed force e.g. pikes defending rears you may quickly find yourself unable to counter them unless all you do is spam ranged yourself. Behind walls don’t bother to bring anything not ranged/wall passing and fast.

    #92789

    Skuggfaxe
    Member

    Also, I am a bit befuddled that people keep saying that Flame Tanks – and Dreadnought units in general – are “slow.” Their movement is 28. Sure, it’s not cavalry speed, but it’s on par with other infantry. So I prefer the term “average” speed, since I consider infantry speed as the “norm.” Of course, I guess it’s semantics, and my perspective is skewed by the fact that I think units in this game are too fast, and hence there are by definition no “slow” units! 😉

    Agreed, they are standard speed as slow units in the 20-24 movement range do not exist in this game. If you try to flank them a smart player will back up and turlte with the tanks forcing you into a choke point of concentrated flame attacks, 2-3 tanks conenctrating fire may quickly become to much for anything melee, i had a game with 5-6 tanks in one stack forcing 4 manticores to withdraw, they had over 130 hp each.

    ;One more thing is, you can’t tie them up with a melee unit to prevent the attack. If its not dead it will shoot.

    #92801

    ier 1 archers will be eaten alive by the flames)

    attacking on the open field, yes, but defending on the open field, or from behind walls, and the situation changes immensely.

    You don’t have to mass ranged troops, or cavalry: you can use succubi, or hell hounds, or first born, or forge priests: most races and classes have units capable of more than handling flametanks one on one.

    The only time they are actually really great is defending in sieges (and only for stone walls, as you don’t want to destroy your own defenses!)

    And even there, rot, or rust strike, or chain lightning will take them down right fast. Draconian Exalted ones, especially with the blessing of faith, will take them down for little damage. Throw in Elders for an especially nice take down.

    As a Warlord, thoroughbred gryphon riders will crush them.

    #92818

    Skuggfaxe
    Member

    Admittedly anything fire immune will beat them, problem is when you do not have access to that.

    As for gryphons with thoroughbred , i had manticores in the 130-150 hp bracket in one multiplayer game running for their lives before they even could harm one tank, cavalry needs to take the initiative and so flametanks can back up and prepare themselves accordingly, you may be surprised at the devastation they can cause when positioned correctly(open fields harder but still possible)

    I think they are too effective, needs damage or aoe reduction. The fire dragons breath attack does 20 damage plus 1 second cooldown, atleast the tank could be on par damage-wise imo.

    #92821

    As for gryphons with thoroughbred , i had manticores in the 130-150 hp bracket in one multiplayer game running for their lives before they even could harm one tank, cavalry needs to take the initiative and so flametanks can back up and prepare themselves accordingly, you may be surprised at the devastation they can cause when positioned correctly(open fields harder but still possible)

    when was that? I thought that t-4 units were very rare in pre patch mp games, and never showed up post patch. And if you are a warlord fighting dreadnoughts, you really should take a water specialization to get rot.

    As for the Dragon, that is because the Fire dragon also has an amazing melee attack, fearsome, etc.

    All I know is that my experience with the flame tank in sp shows it to be good, but comparable, to other class t-3 units, and most mp players say it isn’t op.

    #92823

    turlte with the tanks

    and then rot/chain lighting/great hail, and goodbye!

    #92824

    Skuggfaxe
    Member

    when was that? I thought that t-4 units were very rare in pre patch mp games, and never showed up post patch. And if you are a warlord fighting dreadnoughts, you really should take a water specialization to get rot.

    As for the Dragon, that is because the Fire dragon also has an amazing melee attack, fearsome, etc.

    All I know is that my experience with the flame tank in sp shows it to be good, but comparable, to other class t-3 units, and most mp players say it isn’t op.

    Possible after the first patch, i had a game that lasted for over 200 turns or so, was great fun to see late game army compositions in action, anyways one should not require a specific magic school to battle a certain class, for obvious reasons.

    The dragon costs 360 gold and takes 6 turns to produce, it needs to be more than just a breath attack. obviously. In my games i rarely use flametanks though i don’t play dreadnaught often, vs the AL i can’t use them because the AL does not know how to counter them apart from randomly AL fire protection access.

    #92825

    Skuggfaxe
    Member

    and then rot/chain lighting/great hail, and goodbye!

    Turtle does not mean you have to clump them together, it means you position them so that you force the cavalry into choke points.

    #92826

    Turtle does not mean you have to clump them together, it means you position them so that you force the cavalry into choke points.

    I fail to see how this is possible with flying cavalry, except for in highly specific circumstances.

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