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When to cap and when not to


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Lert #1 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 15:46

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I just had this game:

 

 

Spoiler

An enemy M2 Medium approaches our cap, which has minimal defense. Meanwhile, our east push towards their cap proceeds reasonably well. We're a few tanks behind, but the match has just started.

 

 

Spoiler

The enemy M2 starts capping.

 

 

Spoiler

The enemy M2 is killed. My team's push continues. We're still lagging behind in kills, though.

 

 

Spoiler

The enemy team is winning west flank, we've won east flank.

 

 

Spoiler

Our team starts capping. The enemy team starts heading back one by one, and -

 

 

Spoiler

... Is taken out one by one, and we win by cap.

 

Now, let's analyze what happened, shall we?

 

The enemy team neglected to properly defend the east flank, while pushing hard on the west flank. This is not necessarily a bad idea, it can work, if the follow-up is done right. However, that's where they messed up.

 

The enemy M2 Medium went in for a very early cap, alone. He announced his presence, let us know exactly where he was, while the match was still just getting underway. This meant that several of our tanks were still in a position to defend cap. Him letting us know that he was there by causing a siren to blare and a red capture bar to appear only served to help us. His decision to start capping was the wrong thing to do.

 

However, not long thereafter, our team started capping, and that was what won us the match. What changed between the enemy M2 capping and our push capping? Barely a minute had passed between the two events, yet the entire situation was completely different.

 

When the enemy M2 Medium started capping:

- We were still near the base

- He was alone

- His team had the advantage in kills

 

When our team started capping:

- The enemy team was dedicated in their push, and far from base

- We started capping en masse

- We were trailing in kills

 

Let's tackle these points one by one.

 

- We were still near the base = we were in a position to defend

- The enemy team was dedicated in their push, and far from base = they were out of position to defend

 

- He started capping alone = he had little to no backup, and the capture speed, therefore pressure was low

- We captured en masse = our cappers had support from eachother, and the capture speed (therefore pressure) was high

 

- Their team had the advantage in kills = they had the advantage overall, and could dictate the battle

- We were trailing in kills = we had a disadvantage in hitpoints and guns, and could not dictate the battle

 

So, the enemy M2 Medium started capping without support, too early, and when he didn't need to. He announced his presence and location, and we could easily deal with him at our leisure, without too much pressure. Capping was the wrong thing to do.

 

When we started capping we put significant pressure on the enemy team who, despite having an advantage in guns and material, had to respond right away or lose. They responded by sending several tanks back, which got taken out as they appeared: one by one. We put pressure on the enemy team exactly when we needed to, not before. Capping was the right thing to do.

 

Starting a capture accomplishes two things:

 

1) Announcing your presence and location

2) Putting pressure on the enemy team

 

Knowing when to cap and when not to is one of the more difficult things to learn in this game. Oftentimes people will cap when there is no need to, and oftentimes you'll hear people shout "get off cap!" or "kill, no cap!" when in fact capping would be the right thing to do. The trick is knowing when the time is to cap. I hope analyzing this match helped more people in learning when to cap and when not to.

 

Don't cap to win, rather instead cap to force the enemy to react.



Slayer_Jesse #2 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 15:57

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the grumpy one has spoken!

Audie_L_Murphy #3 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 16:03

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Here we go!  Lert has just started another civil war.

Purples & Blues:  Don't cap unless there is no other way to win the game.

Yellows & Reds (we will call them moths & the cap will be renamed flame or bug light): Oh, must drive to white circle...pretty white circle, I must go there & stay, white circle is good.

Greens:  Split.  The greens who want to be blues or purples...think: "I better agree with purples & blues because they play better".  Greens who still think like yellows...hmmmm, I have a feeling that flame is bad but, it's so bright and shiny.



PR_calvin #4 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 16:04

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Finally a big name forum poster addresses the "we are winning 8>1, lets sit in the cap circle" nonsense +1000

Lert #5 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 16:05

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View PostAudie_L_Murphy, on Jul 01 2014 - 16:03, said:

Here we go!  Lert has just started another civil war.

Implying there was ever a peace to begin with.

 

Usually I err on the side of purples when it comes to how-to-win-the-game, but I don't always agree with them that capping is such a bad thing. The trick is just in knowing when to - something purples consider 'obvious' but reds simply don't see - I admit to having trouble with it as well. I feel that the battle described in my OP was a good example.



Audie_L_Murphy #6 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 16:16

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View PostLert, on Jul 01 2014 - 08:05, said:

Implying there was ever a peace to begin with.

 

Usually I err on the side of purples when it comes to how-to-win-the-game, but I don't always agree with them that capping is such a bad thing. The trick is just in knowing when to - something purples consider 'obvious' but reds simply don't see - I admit to having trouble with it as well. I feel that the battle described in my OP was a good example.

 

Like I actually read the entire posting before posting a comment (you did lay it out pretty well but, most people will see (CAPPING...love or hate it).  We have all posted about this subject so many times!  Also, what fun would peace be in a forum?



InvaderLyx #7 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 16:25

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But...but...how will the unicums be able to get stat fat by grazing upon the health points of enemies if I cap? :P

Lert #8 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 16:25

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View PostAudie_L_Murphy, on Jul 01 2014 - 16:16, said:

 

Also, what fun would peace be in a forum?

It wouldn't be. That's why I'm still sad Garbad was banned. Love him or hate him, his threads were never boring.



Audie_L_Murphy #9 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 16:27

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I will repost my take on capping (again).

 

I have several guidelines I use on deciding to cap or not to cap.

The outcome was in doubt when your team started capping...that is a very good idea.  It sounds like it still wasn't a slam dunk until the very end of the capping time.  Only at the end was the game no longer in question (5 to 1).  As you said the players on the cap fought get there & got hit several times defending the cap.  I have no problem with them finishing the cap at that point.

A couple of important factors.  What was the remaining time?  Was the M37 spotted?  If the timer was even close or the M37 wasn't spotted, finish the cap.  

I don't like to win via capping.  If I was on the cap & the game became a blowout with only 1 arty left versus 5 (and the timer had a lot of time), I would leave the cap & hunt the arty.  However, if I was in a slow and/or damaged tank & the M37 wasn't spotted, I would likely finish the cap to get another game.  It could easily take you 4 minutes to find him.  

A top gun isn't all that big of a deal (sorry).  If you were at 7 kills or 9 kills, I would be more likely to let you hunt.  I hate to see somebody lose a chance at a Pool's medal for a cap win (unless the timer is close, I won't give up a certain win for you to get a medal).

Bottom line is that I'm not a capper & IMO capping is the last choice but, there are times when capping is the correct call.  When in doubt...cap.  I can see some doubt the outcome here.



LemmingRush #10 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 16:31

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View PostInvaderLyx, on Jul 01 2014 - 16:25, said:

But...but...how will the unicums be able to get stat fat by grazing upon the health points of enemies if I cap? :P

Its not just unicums that benefit from extra HP points.

Everyone benefits. You get more xp for doing 1 shot of damage than a whole cap... from my experience



Scorpiany #11 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 16:33

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View PostLert, on Jul 01 2014 - 16:05, said:

Implying there was ever a peace to begin with.

 

Usually I err on the side of purples when it comes to how-to-win-the-game, but I don't always agree with them that capping is such a bad thing. The trick is just in knowing when to - something purples consider 'obvious' but reds simply don't see - I admit to having trouble with it as well. I feel that the battle described in my OP was a good example.

In my opinion, it's not that hard to determine when to cap. If you're chasing a slow moving target that can't hide very well, go ahead and hunt it down. If your base is undefended however, and there are two or three tanks that are either very fast, or already very close nearby, then it's time to cap. And if you're trying to hunt down one speedy little tank with good camouflage, unless you have a handful of tanks that are scattered all around the map, it's probably time to cap.

 

I can't tell you how many times I'm in my T49, all alone, and then the enemy team gets off of the cap to hunt me down. I'm usually found in a bush, waiting for them to come right to me, and then I shoot them down one by one without ever getting spotted. If they had sent even one tank onto the cap, I would be forced to retreat to base, which (depending on the map) could very well end up getting me spotted, and possibly killed.

 

Also, don't underestimate your opponent. If your team has 5 battered Tier 5 tanks left, and you're facing one T29 with full Health, it may be safer to cap rather than try to hunt down the T29.

 

Also, even if you're winning 13 tanks vs. 2 tanks, don't get too cocky.... where were those tanks last spotted, and how fast are they? I remember once I won in exactly that kind of situation... I was in my T49 alongside with a scout of sorts, and we had gotten past the enemy lines right before the remaining allies had fallen. We began trying to reach the enemy base before they reached ours, but it was too late... except the enemies then got right off of the cap. Upon realizing that they were going to try to hunt us down, I waited about 10 seconds in order to make sure that they got some distance from our base, and then got right onto the cap with the scout... and won.

 

Essentially, if there's no possibility of the remaining enemy vehicles beating you, then go ahead and take them on. But if the remaining enemy has superior speed and camouflage and knows what he's doing, the remaining enemy was spotted nearby your base, or you may be facing a full HP top tier tank which your team does not have the firepower nor HP to beat, then it's time to cap.

 

Capturing the base forces the enemy to fall back to defend it. If you can hunt down the enemy relatively easily without risking the victory, then you're safe to do so. However, if there's a possibility that they can beat you if you try to hunt them down, then take the safer route, and simply capture the enemy base.



JDASprawler #12 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 16:50

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Semi related but another issue I see is that pubs don't know when to step out of cap in order to stay alive, I admit this doesn't happen as often but I have seen people stubbornly sitting on cap even though they are getting resetted over and over by a invisitank or a tank that can afford to peekaboom before the cappers' guns are properly aimed, I have no shame on driving out of it if the cap circle offers no protection against the enemy defenders, I have completely chipped away a few addicted capper's HP  due to them trying to force an impossible cap victory.

EliteSwatTeam #13 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 16:52

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View PostLert, on Jul 01 2014 - 08:05, said:

Implying there was ever a peace to begin with.

 

Usually I err on the side of purples when it comes to how-to-win-the-game, but I don't always agree with them that capping is such a bad thing. The trick is just in knowing when to - something purples consider 'obvious' but reds simply don't see - I admit to having trouble with it as well. I feel that the battle described in my OP was a good example.

A lot of times I encourage our team to cap just to get the heat off our Tankers, especially when we are down a few tanks. It can turn the tide of the battle when the enemy has to respond and go back. Great post Lert I appreciate you giving it to the masses...

 

EliteSwatTeam



Audie_L_Murphy #14 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 16:58

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View PostScorpiany, on Jul 01 2014 - 08:33, said:

In my opinion, it's not that hard to determine when to cap. If you're chasing a slow moving target that can't hide very well, go ahead and hunt it down. If your base is undefended however, and there are two or three tanks that are either very fast, or already very close nearby, then it's time to cap. And if you're trying to hunt down one speedy little tank with good camouflage, unless you have a handful of tanks that are scattered all around the map, it's probably time to cap.

 

I can't tell you how many times I'm in my T49, all alone, and then the enemy team gets off of the cap to hunt me down. I'm usually found in a bush, waiting for them to come right to me, and then I shoot them down one by one without ever getting spotted. If they had sent even one tank onto the cap, I would be forced to retreat to base, which (depending on the map) could very well end up getting me spotted, and possibly killed.

 

Also, don't underestimate your opponent. If your team has 5 battered Tier 5 tanks left, and you're facing one T29 with full Health, it may be safer to cap rather than try to hunt down the T29.

 

Also, even if you're winning 13 tanks vs. 2 tanks, don't get too cocky.... where were those tanks last spotted, and how fast are they? I remember once I won in exactly that kind of situation... I was in my T49 alongside with a scout of sorts, and we had gotten past the enemy lines right before the remaining allies had fallen. We began trying to reach the enemy base before they reached ours, but it was too late... except the enemies then got right off of the cap. Upon realizing that they were going to try to hunt us down, I waited about 10 seconds in order to make sure that they got some distance from our base, and then got right onto the cap with the scout... and won.

 

Essentially, if there's no possibility of the remaining enemy vehicles beating you, then go ahead and take them on. But if the remaining enemy has superior speed and camouflage and knows what he's doing, the remaining enemy was spotted nearby your base, or you may be facing a full HP top tier tank which your team does not have the firepower nor HP to beat, then it's time to cap.

 

Capturing the base forces the enemy to fall back to defend it. If you can hunt down the enemy relatively easily without risking the victory, then you're safe to do so. However, if there's a possibility that they can beat you if you try to hunt them down, then take the safer route, and simply capture the enemy base.

Like I posted in my guidelines, when in doubt...start a cap.  If I don't know where the enemy tanks are located & we are up by 5 or 6 tanks, I will suggest somebody starts the cap (or I will if nobody wants to cap).  Capping is kinda like insurance in that situation.  You most likely don't need it but, if you don't have it & something goes wrong...you can really be out of luck.  Also, if their are several enemy blunicums or unicums left...screw it I'm capping it out.  Good players are too dangerous to allow the game to continue.



dmckay #15 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 17:13

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View PostEliteSwatTeam, on Jul 01 2014 - 11:52, said:

A lot of times I encourage our team to cap just to get the heat off our Tankers, especially when we are down a few tanks. It can turn the tide of the battle when the enemy has to respond and go back. Great post Lert I appreciate you giving it to the masses...

 

EliteSwatTeam

Yes can be a very useful tactical move.  Sows confusion among the reds in pub games.  What to do?  Turn back and stop it?  Keep pushing toward enemy cap?  Begin to curse your team mates for allowing an enemy to sneak thru and start that ticker running.  Many players in pubs simply do not know what to do when there is someone on their cap.  It can be a riot to watch what happens.  Also can indeed work to get them exposed for killing.  Aaaaa....the art of capping.  I think it is a very interesting facet of the game and there are many many times when capping does indeed win games that may have been lost.  Definitely there is a time to cap.  Those players who say never cap are just simply wrong.  In pubs, just off the top of my head, I would say one third of games are won by capping.  This seems bout right I do think.  At least one third.

 

And sooooo here we go again.:popcorn:Way to go Lert!



kmanweiss #16 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 18:03

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View PostLemmingRush, on Jul 01 2014 - 17:31, said:

Its not just unicums that benefit from extra HP points.

Everyone benefits. You get more xp for doing 1 shot of damage than a whole cap... from my experience

 

Sure, if the targets location is known, and about to be killed.  The problem is that last light, or last arty in some unknown location on the map.  Heck, I kept 5 or 6 tanks searching for me in a medium for 4 minutes only to end up with a draw when they could have easily won by cap.  A quick cap (when the last tank or two are hiding lord only knows where) will net everyone far more experience from moving into a new fresh game faster.

But for the individual tanker on the cap circle that can't hunt.  Near death tank, heavily beat up tank with bad engine, driver, tracks, or just a horribly slow heavy (kv-1, churchill, etc).  They will benefit much more by simply staying put on the cap then chasing after that last tank.  The 'kill' crowd are looking out for themselves.  If they get 1 more hit, they get more xp/$.  Well, the guy that can't hunt will prosper more with cap points.  Plus, his cap may win the game when the 4 hunters all get killed by the lone defender (seen easy cap wins turn into losses fast due to hunting that last kill).

 

I'm not pro-cap by any means, and if I can join the hunt I will.  But there are times when it may not be the most strategic choice, but it is the most logical choice for that tank at that time.

 

Distraction capping is VERY useful.  That M3 running into the middle of an entire team to cap early is dumb.  But later in a match when the enemy is dedicated to a push in 1 or 2 areas, the distraction cap can pull forces away, or make them rush to cap themselves (leaving them as easy targets).  Heck, I've even seen distraction caps win by cap because no one on the enemy team reacted at all to the cap.  Even in encounter battles, the cap is usually ignored for the first half of the battle.  A siren going off will force someone to react to it.

 

 



Crucis #17 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 18:53

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Lert, good OP.

 

My reaction.

 

As you point out, the single enemy tank getting on cap was a mistake for numerous reasons.  It alerted your team to his location, of course.  Also, for anyone using XVM, they'd know that it was only a single tank on cap, meaning that you'd know that you had time to get back and get a reset.  Also, only putting a single tank on cap isn't going to put a huge amount of pressure on the other team.  OTOH, if you get 3 tanks on cap at about the same time, suddenly there's HUGE pressure on the other team!

 

I will say that if I'm putting 3 tanks on cap as your team did, I'm still doing it to get the win, even if its primary purpose is to disrupt the other team and perhaps get some easy kills as they return to cap singly.  But if the counter is approaching 100% and there's still plenty of enemy tanks left on the map, I'd still take the win, even if the rest of the enemy team hadn't obligingly gotten their tanks back to cap to get shot up.  I suppose if you wanted to be REALLY cute about it, you could have a single tank get off cap to drop the cap% down somewhat to get a bit more time.  But generally speaking, in the situation you describe, I'd take the cap out win, if the were going to let me have it.

 

 



N00berwaffles #18 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 19:02

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agree wholeheartedly.

 

A big part of the game is making the enemy react to you rather than you reacting to the enemy. (Fighter Pilots call it "inside the OODA Loop")

A good proximity scout hiding behind a rock forces the enemy to take him out before they can advance, holding a position that fires at the sides of tanks makes them move. If I die and I can reasonbly expect that the enemy team is saying "somebody PLEASE killl that guy" it's a good death.

 

I would add another trick. One thing I've done in the past is when you are in a position to cap with several tanks, wait and put three on the cap at the same time. It gives the enemy even less time to react because the cap is already going at the fastest rate when the find out you are there.



Lert #19 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 19:14

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View PostCrucis, on Jul 01 2014 - 18:53, said:

Also, for anyone using XVM, they'd know that it was only a single tank on cap

You can tell without XVM as well. Just see how many cap points go up per second. 1 tank caps 1 pt per second, 2 tanks cap 2 pts, 3+ tanks cap 3 pts.



Crucis #20 Posted Jul 01 2014 - 21:12

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View PostLert, on Jul 01 2014 - 14:14, said:

View PostCrucis, on Jul 01 2014 - 18:53, said:

Also, for anyone using XVM, they'd know that it was only a single tank on cap

You can tell without XVM as well. Just see how many cap points go up per second. 1 tank caps 1 pt per second, 2 tanks cap 2 pts, 3+ tanks cap 3 pts.

 

 

Entirely true (and I knew that, of course).  XVM just saves you from having to spend a moment thinking about how fast it's going up to determine how many tanks are on cap.






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