World of Tanks: Knowing when to retreat

Sometimes it's luck, sometimes it's instincts, and sometimes just plain cowardice. No matter the reason, knowing when to retreat, can actually help to turn the tide of a battle... of course those craven enough might turn the battle for the worse as well.

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I can't tell you exactly how instinct nor how luck works. However, it's often based on perceived information which our minds just unconscionably figure for us. We attribute it to mundane or supernatural things as oft as not. But really it comes down to anticipating the information which isn't shown.

The best example I can give you, lies in 2 parts, in 2 different recent battles. In the first battle, I was on a TD, perched on a hill. I was helping to eradicate the enemy, shooting down on them, raining my malicious fire down upon them, and then the battle stopped. We had wiped out 7 tanks, of various types. Now, we all could have charged the enemy's encampment, and possibly won, but when I realized that our 1 tank which was watching our flank was out, I knew we had some enemies at our back door, likely another 5-7 tanks. There was no warning, no telling that our team member had died, but I knew. So, instead of charging the other team's base, I alerted our team, and promptly turned myself about. Another TD followed, and eventually a Light followed as well. Not only did we rout the enemy's attack, but we were able to sweep the the rest of them away, and win the match with 4 tanks left in the match - mine wasn't one of them. So in this case, be it luck or instinct we were able to turn the attacking force away and win... but had I not seen that the enemy had likely flanked us, and retreated we might have lost. It's always a good idea to watch the first minute or so, and know where your own team has gone and occasionally check the map.

On another battle, I was down a slight hill, and would pop my Heavy Tank into view, to see where the enemy was at any given time. As it happens, there were 5 tanks waiting for me, and I knew that the information could help my team. So every time the other team was lost to the map, I would pop back up, garner their locations and back on down the hill slightly. It was as I was playing however that I got a niggling feeling. So instead of popping up the next time, I began to retreat down the hill, keeping the front of my tank faced towards the hill, as I slowly started to creep in a different direction. This is where you can call me craven. Sure my team needed the information I was able to give them, but that instinct kicked in. As I was backing up, 2 tanks flanked me, and would have destroyed my tank quickly, had I stayed in the same spot. As it happens however I was able to defeat one of the enemy tanks, destroying him and his crew, before succumbing to the inevitable and losing my tank as well. When you are the only tank, between your fellow team members, or your artillery, it's a good idea to remember that there is only so much you can do. So warn them if you can, and back away, if you get that feeling of doom. But if you do back away, remember that your team still needs you and you will need to still continue to nurse your wounds.

I did mention being craven or cowardly, and while I would love to find fault in someone who retreats and hides, I cannot completely. If you are the last tank on your team alive, and there are 5+ tanks on the enemy side, then the best you can sometimes hope to do, is retreat and hide. Now when you do this, often 1-3 tanks will break off and attempt to find you. If they do, you might be toast. On the other hand, sometimes you might be able to take pot shots at them, and move yourself out of harms way, ever moving, ever retreating. There is a possibility that you can make the battle end in a tie. While your team members might jeer you for this tactic, it's still a tactic.

Another possibility is that you just don't want to lose your tank in a pointless battle. I've done it. When I have a slow tank, or weak gun compared to my enemy, I have been known to retreat and hide. It doesn't happen often, but imagine playing a near sighted tank, an Artillery if you will. Sometimes the best thing you can do is hide, because 1 shot is all you have, before the enemy will destroy you, and you might not even see the enemy before he kills you, if you aren't hiding. It might seem craven, but should an artillery lose 7k in repairs, just to go into near-sighted TD mode with 1 shot?

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