Hello Halo Wars 2 community,Thanks for putting the thread together. I'll address what I've been seeing
Because it is such a hot topic with strong opinions on both sides, this thread is now the dedicated thread for discussion of air vs. anti-air (or any other unit) interaction. Is air overpowered? Underpowered? Why or why not?
Please keep all discussion of air units confined to this thread.
I can scout / anticipate air early yet it doesn't seem to matter much. No matter how many wolves with marines I put together I'm stuck just constantly replacing the units until I get out teched/out populated. Seems like a waste of time in any lengthy 3v3 war. That's just facing off mostly vs the air onslaught, goes downhill pretty quick if your counter units get countered themselves. All they can do is turn and get shot in the -Yoink- while they attempt a retreat. Air seems to do alright against all unit compositions and can evacuate any battles they choose to; not to mention leader powers being tough / very hit or miss against air.
Another point I have is late game(after 15-20min) it's very tough to take down bases with a fleet of wolverines ( I have tried mixing in hellbringers but they don't survive) I'm sure it's possible and all varies on who is in the game but just wanted to share how the struggle for myself has gone lately.
Maybe a few tweaks could help out the balance of team games? Not sure how to avoid disrrupting 1v1 gameplay which I hear is in a better place.
Could ramping the power cost of the the tier 3 air upgrade help?
Thanks for the feedback
It's not so much the unit-unit interactions that give air an advantage in 3v3 so much as it is map size and positioning. In 1v1 positioning is almost binary, enemy side of the map or your side of the map. Besides some mini-bases/nodes, or perhaps a couple of bases on some maps in particular, there is a very limited number of places only 2 armies can be. In 3v3 things get really crazy. In 1v1 there are 2 armies and ~6 or 7 "positions." In 3v3 there are 6 armies and ~12-15 "positions." If you know anything about combinations/permutations you realize that there is a massive exponential increase in potential positioning because of this (I could write out, by hand, all the possible general positions in 1v1 in a short time, but it would take me a whole day if not more to write out all the 3v3 ones). The much larger size of the maps means positioning is incredibly important. In 1v1 an army of hogs/grizzlies with ample AA could generally make it to most bases on your side of the map from any other base of yours on said side in a reasonable timeframe to respond. In 3v3 the same is not true, the player on the left side, and sometimes the center, can just be way too out of position to aide in defense. Air just shifts its positioning much more rapidly which really gives it a massive advantage when there are literally orders of magnitude more sets of positions.
Population also plays into things as well. In 1v1 there is no cover for you to mass air against an opponent applying pressure. Nearly everyone opens with a decent amount of infantry, which will utterly destroy your early air production. If you sit back and mass it then you give them the map and you will just be outproduced. That's why you generally never see a quick tech to air in high level 1v1s, or even a transition into it right out of a heavy T1 opener. In 3v3 it is a lot easier for 2 teammates to provide cover for the third to tech right into air. This doesn't always work, particularly at the high level among coordinated teams, but it works much easier than in 1v1. The larger map means that even a few air units can be used to skirt around armies and pick at softer targets while they build numbers.
The best trick I've found against air in teams is to force their positioning. If you take the fight to them it forces them to engage your army. This works a lot better earlier in the game as well. You really have to keep the pressure on, as while building mass air their economy is bottomed out while producing fairly fragile units. Go for their early expos and minis particularly, things harder to defend and making it much harder for them to afford a double pump on air. Regardless UNSC is always at a disadvantage against air swarms. Wolverines are more fragile and less agile than Reavers, making them extremely vulnerable to leader powers among other things. AA turrets are really strong, but 4 won't prevent a mass air swarm from focusing a base while a banished shield gives you precious time to get into position and the cloak forces engineers, slowing the air swarm speed (and which can be focused down to eliminate the threat).