Nice write up summarizing your experiences. It was an interesting, well thought out read!
Thank you. I plan on elaborating a bit more in the next recap.
Top 100 War Results
War Ended January 26, 2023
War Effect: Attack Boost #2
Next War Effect: Rush Attack
Last recap I touched upon my experience in Top 100 alliances, and I saw a number of positive comments afterwards. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized I hadn’t really captured what I originally intended to focus on. Specifically, what wars are like throughout the Top 100. In fact, I became disappointed in my own write-up. Time to fix that! No holding back this time. Well, maybe a bit.
First, I think there is a common perception of those not playing at the Top 100 level that the Top 100 is a homogenous group of alliances filled with overachieving, financially well off players. Or players that have more money than brains. Take your pick. Something like this.
But after spending the last three years in Top 100 alliances, I’m confident the view of most of those at that level is something like this.
And that is what I wanted to address. Perhaps a bit of insight for those who see the Top 100 as a distant object not to be approached, or those in the middle of the action who (wisely?) don’t pay too much attention to wars other than the opponent in front of them.
I’m going to start by quoting a few comments that I saw which convey my general view better than I could. Slightly edited with the authors’ permission.
“The gap between Top 3 - Top 5 - Top 20 - Top 50 alliances is just huge. I was shocked that going down to a Top 70 alliance this war there were 5 M&Ms and ZERO(!) waterpipes. Looks like I’ve been playing in a zone that’s really small. Only Top 20 have these waterpipes - lunar heroes - alucard dilemmas.” [Roxi]
“There’s a huge difference. It’s like Top 5 ranks are in a different class, and then #6 - #8 are in a slightly different class, and then #9 - #15 is a toss-up. The rest is who the [beep] knows. There’s been like 3 classes in the Top 10 for a while now. It’s somewhat predetermined once you see the match up for war. I traveled a bit when I was on break, mostly in alliances ranked #50 to #100. And yeah, the fields are much different. Some are still using Xnol tanks, and I was told to go for 6 oneshots and someone else would clean.” [GiGi]
One thing that is pretty consistent for all alliances in the Top 100 (and elsewhere), is when you’re fighting an alliance a war tier below yours, it feels somewhat like a vacation (some might say practice, but that’s rude) due to the mismatch between alliances thanks to how the game does matchmaking. There may be a few tough tanks fielded by the weaker alliance, but there’s enough strong attack teams to handle those through all kill phases. After those tanks, the rest are less of a threat than the alliance is used to facing against peers and stronger alliances. The biggest danger is being overconfident or being unfamiliar with the tank (huh, a costumed Obakan?).
On the other hand, a war against an alliance that is a tier higher is like running into a brick wall. A success is usually when you’re close, maybe even slightly ahead, after the first phase. But very quickly the bench strength and defenses of the stronger alliance takes over, and you end up facing a 1,000 point loss.
Outside of the Top 20, the vast majority of tanks in the Top 100 are purple. Bastet, Huldo, CPanther, Hannah CObakan, Freya, Bera and even Xnol. Variety is there. You can use your one strong M&M team against M&M (if there’s any on defense), then shift to purple tanks. But benches aren’t nearly as deep in the lower ranks, and those “weaker” tanks are very tough against flags 4, 5 and 6 for many in the Top 100. Waterpipe isn’t seen very much once you’re outside the Top 10 / 20.
At the very top, tanks aren’t the focus on defense. They’re a given. It’s the flanks and wings. That’s where there’s a significant differentiation as you go up and down the ranks. Want to know the current meta including flanks and wings? Go look at the war boards for the Top 4. 7DD is known for fielding close to 30 identical defenses. It’s an advantage. They know what they’re doing. They have options. The other alliances in the Top 10 aren’t quite as uniform on defense, but they’re very close. We’re talking slivers of differences between defenses at the very top.
As soon as you move out of those top tiers, the variety of flanks and wings quickly expands. At the lower ranks you’ll usually still have a few defenses at or close to the top tier meta. But you’re just as likely, and more so as you get closer to #100, to see in many teams “yesterday’s” heroes, at least in the eyes of the top alliances. Ckad, Morel, Octos, Cjoon, Elizabeth. And some not even yesterday. Hi there, Master Lepus.
I’ve spent most of the last 3 years in the Top 20. A very typical experience was being matched up against a top tier alliance (7DD, TK, Avenger, LR, Kobyer, etc.), convincing ourselves before war started that this would be a good test of where we stood, though knowing we’d lose. Then dealing with reality as frustration set in when our later flags became failed oneshots and failed cleans due to not having the option of targeting weaker tanks (what’s that when defenses are all the same?). And not having the firepower for a 4th, 5th, 6th flag against the then current meta defense (Guin, GTV, M&M, etc.).
Then we’d face off against a lower tiered alliance. They stood no chance. War strategy and discussion? Not really needed. Relax and enjoy the war hits. See if leadership announced FFA from the start.
But then we’d get a peer war. The exciting ones. Uncertainty.
Now shift to a Top 50 alliance or so. It’s the same words as above, but the numbers shift. We have 10 M&M’s, they have 18 (higher tier). Crap, we’re hosed. Or they have all purple tanks (lower tier). Easy win.
Focusing on the lower ranked alliances in the Top 100, in my experience they usually have a few players that are really, really into the game. Spenders that can talk heroes and strategies with the best of them. Record their hits. Could easily succeed in a much higher ranked alliance.
Why are they there? Usually because it’s been their home for so long that they have no desire to go elsewhere. Or perhaps they’ve "retired’ from competitive wars and are looking for a more causal war environment. Those looking to move up the ranks to see how good they really are may be in the alliance, but will move on sooner or later.
But most members are casual in those lower ranks, relatively speaking. They might spend a bit here and there. Excited if they get a hero from a portal that came out last year. Might rarely speak up, and recording war hits isn’t even a distant thought. Poor performers are more tolerated. After all, what’s the alternative for an alliance whose struggle is to stay full? A few members will go 6/6, but a handful (or two handfuls) will struggle to get 3 team kills. Assigning extra cleans to weaker members is a practical response by leadership. If those members read chat or you can get their attention on Line…
As you move up the ranks, the casual players become less casual, and the serious players become more common. And spend increases on average. Overall, we generally want to play the game with others that are similar to ourselves. Similar spend, level of competitiveness, events, etc. And due to that, there’s always movement on players looking to find the right fit and to test how far they can go in the game.
My experience has been that war is often times harder for leadership of lower ranked alliances (I’ll say outside the Top 20) than it is for leadership of the Top 20 alliances. On one hand, lower ranked alliances are competitive but have members with a wide variety of heroes to deal with. What’s better? CAriel at flank or Octros at wing? Who knows? It’s no man’s land dealing with some rosters because they simply don’t have key heroes that are known commodities on defense. That’s much less of an issue at the higher ranks where you may have to deal with that for a player or five, but not twenty.
Leadership knows there is so much more potential for their members at lower ranks, but the level of engagement makes it much harder to tap into that potential. You’re not going to get war vids, they’re not going to post attack teams, maybe they’ll read suggestions (or not), they don’t have or want the time to significantly work on gameplay, and that makes it hard for leadership to capture the improvement that they know is there.
Yet there are Top 100 alliances that mostly operate on cruise control. Low maintenance. It works for them and their members. Being content isn’t bad.
Higher level alliances? War vids are more common. Sometimes required. One Top 10 alliance required vids of any failed clean. Another if total score was below 200. More players share war vids every war. Defenses are tweaked and picked apart after being reviewed for hours by leadership. Including troop positions. And other options. When using flags, players for the most part know what they’re doing. The few that don’t can’t hide from their war average. They’re likely to not be around for long. Unless…
Recruiting. Almost all alliances, even among the Top 10, have issues with recruiting. Typically it comes and goes in waves. A Top 10 alliance might have a waiting list for a while. Then find it can’t fill up to 30. Even some of the Top 5 have had “recruiting” in their name at times. It happens. Holding onto existing players, even marginal ones for their level, becomes key if an alliance is struggling to stay at 30.
But the Top 10 / 20 alliances have name recognition. An advantage when recruiting. Move down to alliance #90 (whoever that might be). They’re not well known. It’s much harder to fill spots if having to rely on AR and word of mouth when no one knows who you are.
There is movement in the Top 100. A lot of movement. It’s a cobweb of history and connections. It’s not hard to find someone who knows someone in any other Top 100 alliance. Even alliances that speak different languages.
For all alliances, I think leadership would generally agree that recruiting new members is the hardest thing they do, but the most important thing.
From my perspective of ranking alliances, I put recruiting at the very top of the list in importance, ahead of winning wars. If an alliance wants to be ranked, it needs to have the recruiting muscle to stay at 30 most of the time. If an alliance wants to move up the ranks, it needs to be able to recruit new members with stronger benches than the members they’re replacing. It’s rare, but not impossible, to significantly increase in rank only through current members growing stronger relative to the field.
Offense. I touched upon the key items in my prior recap for doing well. Practice, have the “right” heroes, know how to use them, know defenses. Now for a bit more insight. Speed matters greatly on offense. Especially against top defenses. Putting a level 23 mana troop on an average mana hero is a minimum expectation for the Top 100. Except for those few mono players. But that’s another story.
Not long ago, it was all about 7-tile kill teams. A significant advantage if you can get there. A 7-tile kill 3 offense with Eve, Nad and Quennell, for example, greatly increases the odds for a oneshot. Bread and butter for the Top 5, quickly copied by everyone who could. But it’s hard to keep up with those able to field 6 attack teams of that speed and caliber. You need the heroes. And the (magic) troops.
And now? 6-tile, two match, attack teams are becoming the cutting edge.
Ok. I’m done with random ramblings about Top 100 wars, but I hope it was insightful for at least three of you.
By the way, the second screenshot above, the stair step one, is how war matching / alliance ranks are generally viewed by those in the Top 100. As someone who spends hours every week on this, I don’t share that view. My view is different. It’s double vision by comparison, with shifting sweet spots and danger spots. But I’ll save that for another day.
87 wars were reported, including 49 of the Top 50 and 91 of the Top 100.
Average score was 6,825. An immaterial 12 points lower than last war. A new predictability to war scores seems to have settled in.
#3 The Avengers made it a good war against #2 7DD, but the divide remains with 7DD winning by 498.
In a war that I would have liked to have seen, #8 be Water defeated #11 STOK by 1 point. Give us more like this one!
Right below them, #18 Moon Star and #21 Phoenix Empire slugged it out, with Moon Star prevailing by 36.
Fighting one of those “we don’t stand a chance” wars, #45 Месть Королевы came close to defying the odds, falling by only 256 points to a much tougher #24 Naughty Nightmares I.
In a war between two alliances, who I immediately think “they won” when I see their names, #53 LIGABY pulled out an upset win against #47 The 강한 in a 155 point war.
The other upset win was #85 Nova Vis defeating #57 Ring of Honor by 309 points.
And in a few other wars between closely ranked alliances, #80 Die scharfen Chilis grabbed a 56 point win over #84 JPN, while #82 ecconlePALLEcciaociao (note to self, track down the meaning of that) won by a narrow 11 points over #81 Wolves of Winterfell.
Slugging it out for guts and glory, #94 Aggressive II knocked off #98 LEGACY by 281, and #107 Kenny’s Starfighters sneaked by with a 64 point win over UkrLove Friends.
Edit: changed the wording regarding 6-tile attack teams. Previous wording suggested they were more common than they actually are at the top.
Top 100 War Results
War Ended January 29, 2023
War Effect: Rush Attack #1
82 wars were reported, including 49 of the Top 50 and 91 of the Top 100.
Average score was 6,066, very close to the average of 6,060 for the last seven Rush scores.
There were 50 wars between ranked alliances. Of those, 24 were peer wars and 26 were wars between alliances at different war tiers.
For those not familiar with “war tier,” I’ll be covering that and alliance match making at some point in the (I hope) near future.
The above chart needs a bit of refinement, but is still insightful. Practically speaking there is little difference between “Even” wars and “Advantage” wars as those two categories are largely driven by equal alliances having unequal histories during the 10-war ranking period.
For example, if two alliance have the same alliance war score this war, but one of those had a war score 1,000 points higher at some point during the last 10-wars, it’s treated as having an advantage.
Average margin of victory for Even wars was 478, for Advantage wars 555, and for Strong Advantage wars (i.e., different war tiers) 719.
This war the heavyweight fight was between #4 Агрессивные and #3 GD. After slugging it would Агрессивные came out on top by 197 points.
Агрессивные tends to outperform at Rush wars and in weekend wars. For Rush wars, their average win is by nearly 900 points with an average score of almost 7100. Though they don’t fight Top 5 wars as often as their peers, they’ve run the table in their group with a Rush win over The Avengers last cycle and now a win against GD.
Here is their Rush history since rejoining E&P as Агрессивные:
#10 СИНДИКАТ continues to take advantage of matchups against alliances dropping down a war tier, defeating # 7 I’D HIT THAT by a solid 633 points.
Other upset wins includ e$36 Inviolable defeating Menace to Sobriety by 307 and #53 FastKill pulling out a 735 victory over #37 Unleashed.
Outperforming in a loss was #94 Aggressive II, who came with 200 points of defeating #51 King of the North, and #81 Blackmoonlight who narrowly lost by 155 points to tracked, but unranked Impulsive.
It’s busy season at work for me, so I plan on only being able to post the war recap for the next week or two. But I’ll go back to adding my commentary as soon as I can.
Top 100 War Results
War Ended February 2, 2023
War Effect: Rush Attack #2
Next War Effect: It’s Not Rush #1
Likely little to no commentary for a week or two.
It continues to be a brawl between GD, Агрессивные, and The Avengers.
Building some momentum after defeating GD last war, #4 Агрессивные pulled out a 533 point win against #5 The Avengers this war.
СИНДИКАТ surges to #7 after taking advantage of yet another Top 10 drop down opponent last war (633 point win over #7 I’D HIT THAT). I’d reference some insect that jumps out and devours its larger, unsuspecting prey, but I can’t think of one and I’m too lazy to research it.
A notable win by Greek Frappe over SErotonin.
A rare tie between #75 HARDCORE and #114 UkrLove Friends. A near upset win for Friends.
Sometimes the answer is frustratingly obvious…
You could have said “They are like Ambush Bugs” and you’d have unwittingly stumbled onto the correct answer
One of my random rare getting drunk nights and i miss you dude. We havent conmected in a while. Thats all
Logically agressive outperforms on weekends because more time to use discord or alike. Many fights are not a 1:1 anymore, but a 4:1 or so…
Top 100 War Results
War Ended February 5, 2023
War Effect: Undead Horde #1
It will be another week or so of little (at least for me) or potentially no commentary.
Alliances newly ranked going into this war include:
#14 Black List
#16 Seven Days Ascended
#71 Кузькина Мать
#101 [FCP] SK Facepalm CZ
#110 Templarios del Olimpo
Coincidentally, not only was 7DA ranked for the first time, but they also matched up against S.H.I.E.L.D. A meaningful matchup given the historical connection between those two alliances, with 7DA winning by 514.
Greek Frappe breaks into the Top 10 at an alliance high #7 rank. Though they defeated #6 SErotonin last war, GF’s previous loss to #20 Quantum Knights lets SErotonin hold ont the #6 rank for the moment. However, GF’s loss to QK drops outside the 10-war ranking period after next war.
Upset wins against much tougher opponents by #51 Месть Королевы, #67 Русский Шквал, #82 JPN, and #98 Jericho’s Revival.
Performing well against a significantly tougher opponent, though ultimately not getting the win, were #54 infernales, #76 Тёмные, #111 Immortal Rage and #78 die Auserwahlten.
Also, to be added to the ranking tracker now takes an alliance war score of 160.5K (previously 160.0K).
Edited to correct 7DA / S.H.I.E.L.D. commentary
Updated war recap. Now at 95 war results for the Top 100.
@GingerQueen That was a fast Like. I hadn’t even let the contributors know yet that it’s been posted
I am looking forward to this report.
@GingerQueen You’re not the only waiting for this report!
Ascended vs s.h.i… was a cap war
You’re correct. Thanks for pointing that out.