Understanding defense is one of the most essential parts of the Game. Whether you defend another player attack, or an attack from NPC (non player castle) like a "Khan Camp", a "Robber Barron Fortress" the defense strategy will be the same. Since the number of attack possibilities is infinite, I will try to let you understand the defense fundamentals, and the "best practice" defense setups, that will allow you to defend any attack (from any source). It is possible to avoid attacks for short or long periods.
Melee & Range Power
One of the game's elementary part is to understand how both melee & range soldiers are behaving. There are two types of soldiers: melee & range. Both of them can be attackers of defenders. Melee soldiers have a strong melee power but weak range power on attack/defense (according to their type) where range soldiers have a strong range power but weak melee power respectively.
Defending "flavor" strategy
The ideal defend strategy would be to defend with "same flavor" e.g. range defenders v.s. range attackers, and melee defenders v.s. melee attackers. However, when the attacker is using range tools (as will be explained later) can weaken (or totally negate) range defenders, we come to two main defense options:
- When attacker does not use range tools - defend the "same flavor" of attack, if possible maintain same ratio of attack (e.g. if attack has 50/50 melee/range, defend also with 50/50 melee/range, if attacker has only range defend with 100% range.
- When attacker use range tools - defend with more melee than range (usually 70-80% melee and the rest range) with this formation you should give priority to wall tools, or melee tools (e.g. bombs).
Flanks to defend
Attacks can use 1,2 or 3 flanks, with number of waves from 1-11. According the attack flank formation, you have some options to decide if you want to defend 1,2 or 3 flanks. If the attack is only with one flank, defend the same flank (with enough tools in each slot for all possible waves).
|Attack flank(s)||Recommended Defense||If you win or lose|
|1||Defend same flank||Defender gets +30% bonus in courtyard|
|Defend both sides||If you win one side, defender gets +30% bonus in courtyard|
If you lose both sides there is no courtyard bonus
Center + 1 Side
|If center has a lot of tools defend only 1 side else defend both with 30-70 or 60-40||If you lose both there is no courtyard bonus|
If you win one (center or side) defender gets +30% bonus in courtyard
|3||defend only 1 flank (side)||If you win 1 flank there is no courtyard bonus|
If you lose 1 flank attacker gets +30% bonus in courtyard.
When you are offline, the best and safe setup for defense is only 1 flank (called also: 0-0-100) with a ration of 70-80% melee defenders, with priority for wall & melee tools (if you have say, 20% range, put range tools on 1 slot only). This way, other players from your alliance, could support you in case of attack, you have good chances to win that 1 flank you defend, and let the (big) support in courtyard do the rest (!)
Attacker can use tools to reduce (or fully negate) defender's wall, gate, moat and defending range power, but there are no tools to reduce melee defending power. Therefore, as describes in "Attacking" article, a good attack would use range soldiers + range tools (at least at the 1st wave) to negate range defenders and keep only the melee soldiers on the defending castle flanks. The conclusion for that for a good defense strategy, is to maximize the use of melee defenders, when the attack has range soldiers & range tools (the reason is that the attacker doesn't have any tools that can negate (or weaken) the melee defenders.
Always use tools when you defend (!) moat & gate should be used all times, with the wall or range depending on the attack type. Put enough tools in each slot according the no. of waves the attack has (this will make sure that if you lose 1st wave on a flank, you can still have tools for waves 2,3,4 and so on. Here is a table that cap for defense options:
|Attack soldiers||Attack has range tools||Defense soldiers||Defense tools|
|Range||Yes||Melee (70-80%)||Wall, Gate, Moat|
|Range||No||Range (100%)||Range, Gate, Moat|
|Melee||not applicable||Melee||Wall, Gate, Moat|
|Mixed||Yes||Melee (70-80%)||Wall, Gate, Moat|
|Mixed||No||"same flavor"||Range, Wall, Gate, Moat|
Avoid attacks - not defending at all
Short term - Open Gate
In some cases when an attack is coming at your castle, you can "Open Gate" for a limited time. This means that there will be no fight at all, neither attacker nor defender will lose any soldiers and your building will not burn. With "Open Gate" the attacker will loot your resources, and you still lose honer. You can "Open Gate" for 6 or 12 hours, and it will cost you 450 or 700 rubies respectively. When the gate is open, you may close it anytime, but within a week, it will cost more rubies to do it. Some of the cases that you want to consider opening your gate are: A very strong attack that you know you can't defend, either because you don't have enough defenders, you can't get support or your castellan is not strong enough to handle this attack. Also in war times, if there is a "mass attack" on one of your castles, opening the gate can be a temporary solution.
Long term - Protection mode
When you want to avoid attacks for a long time, you may activate "Protection mode". This will protect all your castles (in all kingdoms) and outposts from any attack, but it will not protect your RVs, monuments, labs, metros or capitals. When you activate "Protection mode" there is a "lead time" of 24 hours before it is activated. During that "lead time" your recruit time & tools production slows down, and you will not be able to attack other players, nor to send support to other alliance members under attack. When the actual "Protection mode" starts, all those effects will remain in place until the "Protection mode" expires, canceled deliberately or automatically (when you launch an attack on another player). During the "Protection mode" you will be able to attack any NPC (non player castles) targets for example: "Robber baron castles", samurai and nomad camps, fortresses in kingdoms. However, you will not be able to participate in "Foreign lords" and "Bloodcrow" events, since those targets are not classified as NPCs. "Protection mode" can be activated for 7, 14, 21 days or for 2 months. It will cost 5,000, 7,500, 10,000 and 20,000 rubies respectively. When a "Protection mode" ends for any reason mentioned above, there is a "cool down" period of 48 hours before it can be activated again. "Protection mode" is very useful if you need to stop playing for a period of time, but still want to keep your castles in a good shape. In addition one of the major use of accounts that are in "Protection mode" is during wartimes, where alliance members can send their attackers (and sometimes also their defenders, if they want to protect them as well) to any castle or outpost of an account that is in "Protection mode" during times that they are offline, so those are protected against any attack.
Before we go into the actual techniques for good defends, you need to fully understand the "Yard Bonus" which makes a big difference between winning or loosing that attack. Every castle or target has 3 flanks: right, center and left. The attacker can put troops & tools on 1,2 or 3 flanks, using 1-11 "Waves" and then launch the attack. When the attack "hits" its target, a calculation (which is based on many parameters) is automatically executed at the GGE server for each of the 3 flanks (right, center and left), then if there are attacking troops left after the flank's battle, the last stage of the battle goes to the "courtyard".
The main parameters that determine who wins the courtyard battle are:
- Number (and quality) of troops
- Commander strength and courtyard attack bonus
- Legendary bonuses
- Courtyard bonus
- Number (and quality) of troops
- Castellan strength and courtyard defend bonus
- Legendary bonuses
- Courtyard bonus
After that final stage, the winner of the battle is determined (either the attacker or the defender).
Courtyard bonus is calculated based on the number of flanks won by the attacker (or lost by the defender). It can make the difference between winning or losing the battle, hence having a (huge) impact on the battle's result (!)
On every attack/defense there are 4 possibilities:
- Attacker wins all 3 flanks (defender lost all 3 flanks), the attacker will get a +30% bonus on the "courtyard" battle. This is the worst possibility for the defender (!) The attacker will get +30% bonus on the courtyard battle, making a lot of damage and have a good chance of winning the battle.
- Attacker wins 2 flanks (defender win 1 flank), there in no bonus on the "courtyard for neither attacker or defender. This is the most common defense for strong (or with many waves) attacks.
- Attacker wins 1 flank only, the defender will get +30% "courtyard bonus". Can be used against attacks with small amount of tools (or wrongly using tools), weak commanders. Most high chances for the defender to win the battle.
- Attacker wins 0 flanks (defender wins all 3 flanks) there is no battle in the courtyard = defender wins the battle. This is the best case for the defender, since there is no courtyard battle. (this is very rare situation, only can happened when the attacker is very low level or an attack without tools).
The Attack & Defense Courtyard possibilities can be summarized this way:
|Flanks won by the attacker||Flanks won by the defender||Courtyard Attacker bonus||Courtyard Defender bonus|
|0||3||not applicable||not applicable|