FOREWORD--And Now It Begins Several weeks ago Cornep approached me about a guide he said he was making. His Magnum Opus, if you will, that would attempt to encapture the entirety of Legion TD 2 strategy. Having helped him with numerous other guides, and knowing how valuable his guides have proven to the community, I accepted the task, even while I groaned imagining the 10 page monster I would have to edit. I stopped going to college for a reason after all. When he finally told me he was finished, I opened up the document and my jaw dropped as a 40 page behemoth appeared before me. Yes. 40 Pages. We had to cut over half of this monster which we have lovingly dubbed “The Kraken”, in order to make it comprehensible, digestible, and to ensure that you would be able to finish at least a part of it in one evening. Still, this first part is arguably the most important. Unlike most guides, which are easily digestible and provide a basic overview of specific builds, this guide focuses very little in concrete details, emphasizing instead the general theory behind Legion TD. Its text is therefore far more vague, and of course littered with exceptions, making it far tougher to read and copy than a generic build. However, if you take the time and effort to understand, and comprehend the advice and general strategies given, you will see your ELO rise exponentially--and you’ll understand the basic tenants to a degree that you should be able to play virtually any legion to a modicum of success. This first part of the guide focuses on the basics of Legion TD--how to evaluate your resources and unit choice, as well as the general concepts behind all kinds of sending strategies. The second part, which is still under construction, will provide basic breakdowns of every legion, wave, and summon, along with general strengths, weaknesses and counters. If you remember nothing else, remember the 6 key points Cornep illustrates at the end of this section, and how the global economy in game shifts with each leak. These are the tools to victory, and will apply in every game of Legion TD 2 you play. I hope you enjoy this guide, and I hope it proves as useful to you as I feel it is. Best of luck and have fun while you climb the ladder! --Deutscherhawk Release the Kraken This guide will be focused on different aspects of the game, how to see if they are your weaknesses/strengths, how to improve those parts of the game, how to start learning new parts of the game and other helpful things to make you a better Legion TD 2 player overall! This guide is meant for players who have some experience in the game, or in wc 3/sc 2 versions of ltd. I will start with explaining some core things that have not been touched on my other guides, last a self-reflection section where you can learn a ton about different parts of the game. This will be the effect of reading this guide properly! The three main sections of the guide are: Welcome to the Jungle Strategies Identifying areas to improve 1. The Essentials First we need to determine the 2 core parts of the game: Defending Resource management Defending At its core, this means you build enough to stay in the game. You might leak and still defend your lane, or you might be required to cover your team in front of the king. There are several different sub-categories to this part that one needs to keep in mind, and what they mean in practice. Value: If you look at bottom right side of the UI or press tab, you can see your fighter value. There is also a recommended unit value for each wave in the game, that will provide a rough estimate how much you need to kill the wave. Ideally you will be below value while the enemy sends weak mercenaries, and above value when the enemy sends hard. Where value is a very general picture of how much holding power you have on average, fighter choices you make during the game, have a much more wave to wave value, that you have to find out yourself or consult more veteran players on discord or here on the forums. This per wave value of a certain unit, greatly depends on the armor and attack type of the unit versus the armor and attack type of the wave. We will use Nightmare as the example unit, the unit is swift armor ( strong vs impact and weak vs piercing) and piercing attack ( strong vs arcane and swift armor and weak vs fortified and natural armor). Let us view waves 4 and 5 with nightmare in mind. Wave 4 is impact and swift, making it very good unit to have nightmare on. On wave 4 Nightmare is 144% effective, meaning it has a functional value of 266 gold. Against wave 5 nightmare suffers the opposite effect, the wave is nature armor and piercing attack, making it the perfect counter versus Nightmare. The value of Nightmare is only 134 gold, making it only 72% as effective as against a normal wave, and half as effective as against wave 4. Basically, you need 2x nightmare on 5, to do similar amount of work as 1 nightmare does on wave 4. Few examples of armor and attack types allowing good pushing: Pyro opening ( with 1-2 peewees) holds waves 1-5 without extreme sends, this allows the pyro to safely push 4 workers before wave 5, making it the only build capable of doing this safely every game. Why? Pyro has AoE to counter very tightly packed wave (honey flower is also very good due to the similar damage style), but the real reason is wave 5. Wave 5 is piercing attack and natural armor, this means the wave is perfectly countered by the pyro's magic attack and fortified armor, making it an extremely efficient for holding the wave. After wave 5, however, pyro needs to build hard to hold the next waves, since Pryo gets punished by the impact damage on 6 and the stun on your 2 units, as well as arcane armor of wave 7. Aqua combo + protons are an another example of this, the aqua combo is about 70/30 piercing and magic. This makes the combo extremely strong for waves 4-8. On wave 4, the piercing kills the wave. On wave 5 the magic kills the wave. On wave 6 the stun is a small factor as the combo damage will keep burning even when the units are stunned, and the wave has so few units that the combo procs a lot. Wave 7 is an average wave, as the combo does little damage due to the wave being arcane, but the wave being magic means they do barely any damage to the aqua units. Wave 8 is extremely good for aqua combos, the wave has swift so it takes good damage from both piercing and magic, and the wave hits magic damage making it do very little damage to the aquas. Armor and attack types make a MASSIVE difference per wave and per unit basis. This cannot be stressed enough, and if you learn 1 thing from reading this guide, this is the point to learn. Spamming one unit will make your build one dimensional, and exceedingly easy to counter. You need a mix of armor and attack types in order hold every wave securely. After knowing how much value you need to have for a certain wave, and then having that value in good units against the wave, there is a third and very important thing to consider, and it is Positioning. With bad positioning, you have nightmares running in first and dying, backline dps like starcaller or zeus dying before your tanks, auras dying first and so on. While value and what units someone has is very important, if you place the units wrong, you will still leak. Basics for this part is: Tanks to the front, Fighters next, behind fighters auras and such and lastly backline squishy units like zeus and daphne. Positioning also matters on what you place behind what. for example if you have a melee unit, it can be behind a ranged flying unit like tempest, and not get pathing issues, ensuring a tighter cluster of units. There are also options for flanking units, for example with fatalizers in mech, where your main stack is ranged, and you place the fatalizer slightly behind and other side, it will flank the wave and backline mercenaries. When your Value matches the wave, your armor and attack types are either balanced or optimized for the wave, and your units are positioned according to the positioning requirements needed, you will defend your lane. Resource management You have 4 different resources to manage and 3 of them gold, mythium and supply are linked to income. Gold is gained from killing the wave, mercenaries killed, income and enemy leaks. Gold is spent on units to defend on your lane and for workers to get mythium. This sounds very simple, but the right balance is a large portion between you and the next 400 extra ELO. Mythium is gained from workers. 1 worker gives you 0.2 mythium per second, or 1 mythium every 5 seconds. This is also shown when you press <tab>. Mythium is your weapon in this defensive game, as is discussed further in that setting in the strategy section of the guide. Supply might not seem important, but it can play a crucial role at certain points of the game, especially with wave 8-10 and wave 13-15 sends, when the mythium cost of supply can mean success or failure of those saves. The usual supply cost of an unit is 1 supply per 100 gold. There are some exceptions like butcher and APS, and very expensive towers that go over 300g per unit. Income is the key to victory. The more income you have, the more you can snowball. Snowballing from early workers is the thing to do, and after you have gained momentum, you won’t stop further snowballing. Income is gained from sending mercenaries with mythium. Almost always the team with more income wins, as the more income you have, the more gold you have, and the more offensive and defensive power you have. A very large portion of the game comes down to how you manage these resources. You build your defenses with gold, you spend gold to make workers, you gain mythium with your workers, you gain offensive power with mythium as well as gold through income. The resources form a cycle, and if you fall behind in one, for example gold, you will fall behind in mythium, and your supply will cost a larger portion of your mythium than normally. Time can also be considered a resource here, as you have limited time to check all the necessary things. The list below has the things i have found to be the most crucial to spend your time on each wave. All of these things are Extremely important, and should be done every wave. See what mercenaries you got on your lane Quickly glance what mercenaries other people on your team got. To see if all enemies saved, or if there are big leaks coming so you can plan for mythium spending. Observe the lane that is sending to you in detail, see if that player built all his/hers gold on units, or if he made workers. This allows you to gauge the amount of mythium you will get next round. If he made no workers assume similar mythium output. Observe the lane you are sending to. Ideally you glance here while look at the previous point, so you can see fully how much they have built. Analyze the lane. How much did he build for this round? How much does he have value in Tanks, fighters and dps units? When can you cause leaks with your mercenaries? What waves is he good on? Do you need to let the lane on your right know your lane pushed hard? These kind of questions should go through your mind. Briefly check what kind of overall setups the other 2 lanes in the enemy team have. What will you build for the next round? What is the rest of your team doing? Do you need to cover their possible leaks on certain waves? Can you push harder since they have higher than normal value? Can you push a worker? Do you need to communicate something with your team? Maybe a save? Maybe enemy team is weak on wave X? 2.Strategies There are several ways to win the game. Full income All-in Economy into late game win Bleed them dry Black Monday There are mixes of these main types, that usually end up happening, but these can be considered the "base" types that have strengths, weaknesses, certain requirements from the players, certain playstyles and such. The best results happen when you are aware how to cover the weaknesses, how to exploit the strengths to your teams advantage and how to ensure your plan happens, and not the enemy plan ( assuming your enemy team has one). Full income: This way of winning, might sound weird, but if you aim to never let your king take damage, you will eventually win. This doesn't mean go full value from wave one, it means you have enough value to hold the waves, the enemy sends, boss levels and enough workers to pressure the enemy with your own sends so they can't push too hard and kill you. These games usually go to 20-21, but sometimes they can end around 17-19 if the team going for this tactic decide to do 1 round skip and the enemy is starved due to repeated saving. Strengths: Little coordination required No stress about everyone saving for the same wave Less chances to make mistakes If you don't lose, you win. If you have sufficient game knowledge, you can predict enemy saves with high accuracy, and build for the right waves Can play greedy and have impossible to lose on values late game Weaknesses: Passive style Requires good overall gamesense Long games, unless really high WR, this is slow to climb the ladder with All-in: Killing the king in one wave, usually achieved by a very heavy send, to an extent that if the send fails the sending team is going to be clearly behind in overall value. This style is risky, if it fails, however will do a lot of damage and usually win the game when executed correctly. For example: Save from wave 10 to 15. If such a long save doesn't work, you won't survive the coming rounds with your low value. So either you win hard, or hope that the enemy messes up hard after. Strengths: Can be unpreventable for the enemy team When executed correctly, VERY hard to survive Can often lead to a base race Weaknesses: If anticipated and properly prepared, can lose the game for the sending team Requires a minimum of 3 very weak lanes to the send, or at least no very strong lanes Leaves chance to get undercut Can often lead to a base race Economy into late game win: This tactic has a two-sided approach to 1-10, on one side, you push hard and get high income, and while pushing hard to get big income, you try to maximize enemy leaks by sending the hardest to clear minions to them. This means you do one round skips, aura sends and other methods to force out leaks. Early game leaks are SO good for you, you get extra gold and the enemy loses gold. This gold snowballs really hard, and 10g on wave 2 can be more beneficial for you than 50g on wave 11. For example, say you see the enemy team is weak on wave 9, 3 of them are weak, so 3 in your team save. You skip sending a dino on wave 8, costing 3x 24 or 72 gold. On average you sending harder on 9 for weaker lanes results in 5-6 leaks. This means 16 leaks spread over 3 lanes. 1 leak gives your team 8-12 gold spread out amongst the 4 players ( about 10-20% chance to get 3 gold instead of 2g each). On average You get 9 gold per kill to your team. Your team gains a total of 144 golds. This is a fairly conservative estimate, depending how good your sends are and how weak they are on the wave. So, you gained 144g, lost 72g, gained 72g total. Good job. But this is not all. The enemy team gains about 5 gold per leaked minion, meaning they lose about 8 gold per creep. The enemy team lost 128g. So you have gained an effective gold lead of 200 gold from your 1 round skip. But wait, that’s not all! If they had only 1 person holding, you will definitely cause the leaks to get to king, causing about 15-35% king damage. This amount of king damage will win you a race later in the game, or allow a lot weaker send to end the game. Strengths: Very efficient style that can work against any enemy tactic Early economic damage allows snowballing Kill sends on 11-19 makes sure there is always a potential wave Economic push early allows good holding value for late game Individual skill allows destruction of 1 lane, which helps the team snowball Weaknesses: Very skill intense. Average skill leads to sub-optimal results, low skill makes the tactic very sub-par. Can lead to tunneling, as the players need to pay a lot of attention to 2 lanes, which can lead to ignoring the other lanes Has potential to go too individual instead of team game Bleed them dry: This has some prerequisites that need to be met before you can go for it, and that is either 1-2 leaking or 1 cross leaking. You keep sending very hard, keep those lanes leaking, and soon it will be impossible for them to stop leaking, you get fed, and wave 20 will finish the game latest. This usually results in king losing HP over multiple turns small portions per wave. Strengths: Snowballs very heavily Flexible extension to other tactics Easy to execute after started Weaknesses: Requires some saving usually before you can go for this Relies on enemy mistakes Can't be the initial gameplan The Black Monday: This build is a combination of going full income, bleed 'em dry and economy in the late game. Basically what you do, is that you push income really hard, send units that the enemy is weak to and on the waves they are weak on, solo sending to cause economic damage to the enemy ALL GAME. Literally your goal is to kill the enemy value, workers, income and everything else they might need to do well in the game. A lot of 1-2 round skips, half skips, solo big saves. Essentially the goal is to gain gold advantage for your team, while causing massive economic damage to the enemy team. Strengths: Causes the enemy to tilt Fun to watch a lane struggle to hold, but being unable to recover Very flexible strategy, can be changed mid game to any other Cripples the enemy team, making it hard for them to win Weaknesses: The highest skill requirement from individual for both sending and building The highest skill requirement from working as a team to cover all possible waves Communication is a must within the team As this might be the "strongest" tactic, i feel obliged to elaborate further. You can do it without meeting all the things below in an passable way. To pull this strategy off, i would say about 1600-1700 ELO is required, maybe even more. What you need to know to pull this off perfectly: Every unit by heart in the game. This means you can tell what armor types, what attack types a lane has, how much value/dps/hp is in a certain type on the lane. How every units abilities function, how they cause the above mentioned things to change, for example daphnes are actually very good on 13 due to the dancing their debuff causes, or how aquas are weak on 6 on paper, but absolute monsters in reality and so on. Need to be able calculate the value of a lane to fairly accurate estimation ( within 100g), so you know several things such as: Their potential worker counts, if they saves part of their gold to build bigger next round, when they supply upgrade and so on. Basically, this needs to be done fast enough, so you can do this on 2 lanes ( the lane that sends to you, the lane that gets your send), while you still see how much sends you got AND communicate info to your team that they should know. Need to calculate the mythium gain of the lane that sends to you ( linked with the point above), to estimate potential sends and to prepare for them, while not over preparing to maintain maximum push for maximum economic damage. So if your opponent is sending a fiend per round, you can be fairly certain that you won't get a random drake. How to communicate efficiently with your team, this means you need to let others know when your people either push insane amount of value, or workers, or have massive weakness, or if they interfere with saves of your team by having good holder potential for a wave. Basically any outlier behavior from the 2 lanes you are paying attention to. You need to know your builds exact hold potential. This means when the wave begins, and say you get a dino on wave 7, you immediately know if you hold or if you leak and know how much you leak, so you can spend 95% of the wave observing the enemy team. You know the weak waves of each race, you know weak waves of each build and possible sends for all of them. So, we now know the main strategies, we know what strengths and weaknesses of different types. You can also expect the main types from the enemies, they might not be so clearly done, as it is common to lack a clear goal from wave 1, however you can still can use the above mentioned tactics as a guideline to counter your opponents. The current sending and saving guide : https://legiontd2.com/community/threads/corneps-guides-sending-and-saving.10043/ The current what to send guide: https://legiontd2.com/community/threads/corneps-guides-what-to-send.10019/ Read both guides before you continue, to ensure you can reflect as much as possible in the next section. This concludes the initial part of the guide. You should now be familiar with basics of the game, how they are connected with each other as well as how they relate to your game plan. The game strategy can make a big difference to your win %, especially if you communicate the strategy with your team, and get everyone to follow it. Master the basics and you will performance will raise faster than you think. The six key rules to always remember: Never make workers when the enemy saves mythium. Armor and attack types make and break the game. Never forget them. Snowball through early workers. Never underestimate the harm small leaks cause to the enemy. Economy wins the game. Always customize your mercenaries to the lane you are sending to. This is about 1/3rd of the Kraken, more will come after @deutscherhawk assists me in sorting the next 26 pages into a better format.