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Guide to Combat Boosts

combat boostsGame of War Boosts – Head to Head Comparison

Which combat boosts are best in Game of War? Not all boosts are created equal. Understanding the boosts is important for many decisions in Game of War including choosing gear to craft, selecting gems and research prioritisation. So I decided to put them to the test in a combat boost ‘Head to Head’. I will go on to explore the specifics, but for now if you just want to know which ones are best:

Tier 1 Boosts:

Attack Boost
This is the #1 damage boost. It always adds significant damage and even in the scenarios where it is not the best, it is still very good.

Enemy Attack Debuff
This is the best defensive boost by a huge margin. It saves significant numbers of troops in all scenarios.

Tier 2 Boosts:

Enemy Health Debuff
Often nearly as good as Attack Boost, but does nothing at all when battling very strong opponents (e.g. Zeroing a huge player or get rallied or by XxKuranxX).

Health Boost
Very good in nearly all scenarios but does very little against very weak opponents .

Tier 3 Boosts:

Defense Debuff
Essentially the opposite of Health Debuff. The very best boost when battling very strong opponents (e.g. Zeroing a huge player or get rallied or by XxKuranxX) but in most common scenarios it only increases damage by a moderate amount. Great for multi-billion power rally leaders. Not so great for everyone else.

Defense Boost
Better than Health Boost when losses are very low, but it’s effectiveness drops off rapidly as troop losses increase.

Tier 4 Boosts:

Trap Boost
Traps are affected by Troop boosts anyway so there is little need to focus on this. Traps have a big impact on the game for medium power strongholds, but once you get to millions of troops, 125k traps just don’t have a huge influence.

Siege Boost
As with Trap Boost – once players start getting millions of troops, having a troop specialised in destroying 125k traps just isn’t that useful.

The Results – Time for Some Graphs!

Boosts are very situation dependant so I have tried to cover a variety of common combat scenarios. The main influencing factor is how strong or weak your opponent is relative to you. To keep things as simple as possible, all these battles are T3 Infantry vs. T3 Infantry. If you want to know more specifics about the testing approach, see below.

Attack Boosts

This section is looking at the boosts that inflict extra damage. It is looking at how many extra kills each boost type gets.

Scenario 1: Rallying a Huge Target
2.375m vs. 25m troops
You: 600% Attack Boost
Opponent: 600% Defense and Health Boost

rallying huge target

When fighting a huge opponent health debuff does nothing whereas defense debuff is even better than attack boost. This is true in all scenarios where your opponent has very high defence (through massive troop numbers and/or through huge defence boosts).

Scenario 2: Solo Attacking  a Medium Target
375k vs. 1m Troops
You: Attack: 400%
Defense: 200% Health: 200%

soloing medium target

Here defense debuff gets much worse. It still does a reasonable amount of extra damage but far less than the other two boosts. Health debuff is nearly as good as troop attack, even overtaking it at higher levels.

Scenario 3: Taking a Hit from a Rally
5m vs 2.375m
You: 600% Attack
Opponent: Defense: 600% Health: 600%

taking hit from rally

Defense debuff becomes very ineffective in fights that are even or where you are ahead. Again, we see health debuff is very similar to troop attack.

Defensive Boosts

This section looks at how the defensive boosts reduce kills. A number of players had reported seeing positive results by using a mix of defence and health boost so I have also included a 50/50 split of these two boosts.

Scenario 1: Rallying a Large Target
2.375m vs. 10m troops
You: 600% Defense and Health Boost
Opponent: 400% Attack Boost

rallying large target

This shows the power of attack debuff. It blows all other boosts out of the water. We can also see that defense boost does nearly nothing in this scenario. Troop health is somewhere in the middle but still much more effective than defense boost. If you are weak compared to your opponent (either through being outnumbered or out-boosted), defense boost is very ineffective. The 50/50 health defense split is somewhere in the middle but still worse than just focussing on troop health.

Scenario 2: Solo Attacking  a Medium Target
375k vs. 1m Troops
You: Defense: 300% Health: 300%
Attack: 250%

soloing medium target

Very similar results to the scenario above. You are outnumbered, and even though you have better boosts than your opponent, defense boost is very ineffective. Attack debuff is dominant once again.

Scenario 3: Taking a Hit from a Rally
5m vs 2.375m Troops
You: Defense: 400% Health: 400%
Opponent: 600% Attack

taking hit from rally

Defense boost is more effective in this scenario but still significantly less effective  than the other boosts.

Scenario 4: Smashing a Weak Opponent
375k vs. 100k Troops
You: 350% Health 350% Defense
Opponent: 150% Attack

attacking weak opponent

As I talked about in a previous article, this is the only scenario where defense boost overtakes health boost. If you are attacking a very weak opponent, defense boost is more effective and can reduce your losses to 0 (health boost can’t). It is worth noting though that losses here are very small regardless at less than 1% of total troops.

Testing Specifics
The results were all produced from the Inside Game of War Battle Calculator (coming soon) which was created from extensive testing and modelling of the combat algorithm. It is tested working with a high level of accuracy but it comes with the disclaimer that it is not possible to test for every eventuality. In particular it is very difficult to run controlled tests with very large troop numbers and therefore cannot rule out the possibility that MZ apply certain nerf/boosts above certain thresholds. Even if this were the case, I would hope it would not significantly impact the conclusions of this test.

To keep things as simple as possible, these results were all conducted with Regular T3 Infantry vs. Regular T3 Infantry. In future, I would like to test with a wider range of troops and tiers.


There is a clear hierarchy of boosts. You will probably see the 1 bil+ power rally leaders wearing defense debuff gear but this does not mean it is the best gear for you. With a few very specific exceptions the boosts can be divided into tiers:

Tier 1:

  • Attack
  • Attack Debuff

Tier 2:

  • Health
  • Health Debuff

Tier 3:

  • Defense
  • Defense Debuff

As mentioned, it is dependant on the type of combat you engage in, but if you follow these tiers you will be covered for the majority of combat situations. The guide to the Best Combat Gear currently treats all boosts as equal, but I will be updating it shortly to take into account the superiority of certain boosts. Head an over to the Battle Forum if you would like to engage in discussion about anything combat related in Game of War.

About the author

Slaggy, founder of insidegameofwar.com and all around game enthusiast.

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  1. These troop test numbers are a joke. Could you update this with more realistic troop counts. Most traps are around 1 billion troops at a 10:1 t2:t4 ratio. Most rally leaders are sending 7.2m to 8m rallies. They always use cores. I am curious if at these number the boost effects start to change.

  2. Anyone knows rally leader chat room?

  3. any updates to these tests? would be great to see how huge troops behave now like 500 mil instead of 5m. Also would be great to know how much defense troop tiers add per troop. This matters because for very large SH, why would I want to add defense gems to gear such as golden shogun?

  4. Ive found that health works better for rally defense until your troop numbers exceed the rally troop numbers by 1000%

  5. hi.

    I am porting my account (strong hold level 5) from 801 kingdom to 707 but there is ristriction showing that this kingdom is under protection. i am trying this from two weeks but could not succeed.

  6. This page needs a serious update, all the charts relating to attacking and defending are from before march size increase research and the 75% boost were released. 2.375mil rallies and 275k solos are no longer very applicable.

  7. My last comment is more in reference to my set bonus, would a mix of troop attack debuff, health debuff and troop attack work best when battling for the wonder?

  8. So what boosts are best for wonder battles when your opponent is evenly matched?

  9. What’s the best troop count ratio to eat a rally when hero in wonder not in SH

  10. Profile photo of Jonathan

    This is way off now. For defense, a combination of defense and attack debuff works best. My Haunted Xena Kunoichi swallows full rallies no issue, even with debuff cores… the list for best defense equipment is laughable.

    • Jonathan,
      What do you use for gems/boosts? I was told defense & attack % are better to have than high attack debuff %. I have same gear and I was running, blue def, green health, shadow gem and elite defense. I was then told remove elite, switch to attack (can’t think what 25% attack 4th gem are). I then had my tree set to all 3 alter boost maxed and attack debuff maxed. Your thoughts?

      • I now have a Full Frostlord with the following gems in all slots: Shadow, Honor/Minotaur (Honor are rare), Defense and Elite Defense. My gear is 3,498% overall defense with 312% troop specific Defense.

        The best defense gear by far is the Frostlord set. Second would be the new Imperial Dragon… it would be a lot better if it had individual troop attack, but it doesn’t. This site combat boost article is so obsolete is not even funny.

  11. It’s time for a serious update, Slaggy. To start, when you chart the boosts and/or debuffs, when, let’s say attack is 150% and defense is 600%, adding 100% to attack(150%) is going to have a much larger affect than adding 100% to defense(600%). It’s a pretty big flaw but so easy to correct.

  12. Just wanted to say… As a small t3 solo trap capable of swallowing a cored hit from the biggest of power players, my research has led me to a different conclusion regarding what boosts are more valuable when defending. Once you can kill all incoming troops… The focus shifts from adding more attack to saving more troops. I’ve found the when comparing boost point to point, defense saves more troops than health. I would be interested to see more about how your research was conducted.

  13. Profile photo of B

    Slaggy, I am trying to figure out some over all boosts for some lvl 5 gear vs lvl 6 gear, is there a way you could explain how the boosts are weighted to reach outcome of your overall boost numbers?

  14. Hi Slaggy. Love the site, and thanks for all your work!

    I’m still trying to get a handle on the different boosts.

    It “sounds like” having more troops in your city (if you are being attacked) is the best “boost” you can have, somewhat regardless of all the other “boosts”?
    If yes, I still don’t understand how GOW caclulates an attack.
    Just for a moment, assume that an attacker is attacking with 400k T4 Strategic Cavalry, and he has 1,000% attack boost, and no other boosts.

    I have 10x that many defenders, (4 million) in only 1 troop type, being T3 Strategic Cavalry.
    And I have 100% defense boost, with no other boosts.
    What would the outcome be?
    (pretend their are no other differences from research and hero).


  15. There is one scenario missing. A wonder battle where its 2.375m vs 2.375m. In other words exactly equal troops. My suspicion is that Attack/Attack Debuff are probably the best combination here.

    May be worth simulating on a smaller scale on a tile. 1k T1 vs 1k T1 with various boosts.

    • We attempted this with two lvl 60 hero’s wearing full samurai (both have all research done that is available). Even split of troops across the board (only difference was we had an extra leg & diana and defender had leg & cat). We used attack & defense debuff and won by about 100k. When using attack debuff on the wonder, we lost by about 30k. King had title and our general had Champion title to make it as even as possible.

  16. what are the best boosts in order for a 100mil, t3 turtle that takes solo hits?

  17. When taking solo hits…is it better to max out in the hero skill tree enemy attack debuff and enemy health debuff instead of maxing out the level ll individual troop attacks?

  18. Hi Slaggy,

    I have been playing this game for a couple months now, and am at the point where i need to decide on endgame gear for my hero. Purpose of my perm gear would be to solo targets up to 150-200m depending on troop amounts.

    I was looking at your graphs, and noticed it only mentioned troop count in them. My question is, does the game purely look at troop count when calculating what boosts are more effective? Or will it follow the logic that the gear strongest against 1m t4 will also be strongest against 4.5m t1?

    Reason is that I realized that unless you max set bonus research completely, mix/matching gear for different sets will give you the best overall boosts when attacking. I am having a tough time deciding which pieces to use, since it doesn’t seem like the “best combat gear” list is weighted according to which boosts are better for attacking which targets.

    The information on this site has been invaluable to me so far, which I really must thank you for.


    • Overall, Samurai gear is great. Very versatile whether attacking or defending. Good debuffs. I have pretty much every set now and I mainly stick to Samurai but also play with colossus and a fire age set when soloing (or executioner if I’m needing to capture heroes for boost). A lot of factors come into play when attacking whether it’s a small or big target, solo or rally. Everything kind of plays it’s own role there. How many troops you send. What kind. Strat or reg. What’s your boosts/debuffs. What are the defenders boosts/debuffs. How many troops they have. What gear they have on etc. Research done. Gems etc.

  19. Great posts slaggy. was just wondering…how would you rank HEALTH DEBUFF as a defensive boost – compared to defense boost or health boost? Most of the writing here is about health debuff as an offensive boost. I’m asking because with the new level 53 hero trees i have a decision to make in speccing my DEFENSE SET (Xena Def set 2) between the skills of infantry/ranged/cavalry defense – or infantry/ranged/cavalry health – or enemy health debuff. THANKS!

  20. Thank you Slagg. it helped me alot. i very appreciate with your help.

  21. Hi, I’m a 2.7B player that just discovered this site (thankfully). I read article on the various boosts and have question. With all the attack/defend at wonder I do, what is best boost to use when HOLDING the wonder? And other than research tree, what is best source to get Defense Debuff boosts? Attack Debuff boosts?

  22. Profile photo of x Anarchy xx

    Question when attacking an opponent that has more troops than your inbound march. wouldn’t attack debuff be better than Troop attack ? As Attack debuff will work against all their army where as troop attack will be limited to only boosting your march? Obviously you would need some attack so that being said in your opinion which would be better stats.

    scenario 375 t4 vs 1mil t3

    a. 500% attack
    b. 400% attack and 100% attack debuff

    I am thinking B. should get better results correct?

  23. Hi Sirs/Miss. I have a question. my stronghold level 6. my wall defense is very weak. food blink red color. after I did get attacked by higher level SH21. what to I have to do. I am new player for 1 week. hope heard from everyone soon.

    • Dont worry about food blinking red. You do not need food to feed your active troops. You only need food to do research or train new troops. My advice would be not to repair your troops…focus all resources on your research. Also, most important…join an alliance so you can get help in your kingdom too.

  24. Profile photo of FloatGoat

    Hey Guys! I’m a sh14 turtle. I’m sittin ~60mil power, with 4,999,998 reg t1s and strat t2s each (to avoid the “so called” 5mil diminishing return, i really don’t want to test it) i have 400% health/def and ~200% attack (individual and troop att combined). and I am starting to get really bored. nobody attacks me but I like the idea that I cannot be rallied. That said, I am thinking about moving up to sh18 and I wanted to know how many t3’s I would need in order to take on a t4 rally. I plan on have ~16 hospitals which would give me 400k beds. Right now I have enough speedups to make 7mil t3s. But im thinking that i’ll need atleast 20mil to keep my losses down to just hospital beds.

  25. Ok, forgive my ignorance but I’m slightly confused on the combat boosts graphs.

    I’m 1.2b power, 600m of which is research. I keep a core set on preset for defense which focuses on strat attack and debuff being as from what I’ve gathered attack/attack debuff are what to focus on. But, I’ve recently been told, from what I’d consider skilled players, that I should focus that set on health/defense.

    So my question is, if I were to take a full t4 strat rally from a strong core set(typically for a single troop type attack), what should my defense core set focus on?

    • Profile photo of Ripz

      Hi All this is a great site and my first comment

      I have been in many rallies on both sides.

      Now based on all I have learned, my feeling is that Troop Count, & Hero is best way to save and kill more troops

      I have tested this myself, when I went 1 to 1 troop count, vs 10 to 1 troop count, even tried all the different boosts.

      Yes boosts helped save a good portion of troops, but when I did a 10 to 1 my troops loss was 10x less than my best defense gear/

      My theory is that when you attack, the attack is shared by all troops t1-t4, and then based off the attack points the weakest die first ie the T1s

      I have taken a full core balanced t4 with 2 mill troops; and I used two defense cores
      Result 1.8 mill t1 dead vs 2 mill t4 dead and took hero

      So my question really is build lots of troops or focus on research boosts
      10 mill t4 with 500% health boost = 225,000,000 in added health points
      30 Mill t3 with 400% health boost=360,000,000 in added health points

      In dozens of rallies I’d much rather hit guy with really good gear and not many troops rather than a guys with tons of troops and descent attack gear

      Your take?

  26. How does enemy attack debuff work? Does it take a 2000% core down 33% of total or just down to 1967%

  27. No sense, if you re rallying a target healt debuff dont take effect but if you are taking a rally healt boost take effect.

  28. Wish the battle reports would show how many kills my T3 and 4 traps get….

  29. So we recently took the risk of rallying a guy just shy of 1 bil. He was in monster gear at the time. I had a full core set of nearly 2000% infantry attack. We won the first two hits knocking his power down nearly 100mil. By the third hit he woke up and popped cores last second. The whole rally was swallowed and my hero taken. His troop count on that third hit was about 6 to 1. Are there any cores/boosts currently available that would’ve saved my hero in that scenario? I’m guessing in reality maybe no cores/pieces would’ve done the job, but in theory high percentages of attack debuff and troop health prioritized over attack boosts would’ve saved hero even though we would kill less troops? Does that sound right?

    • If your rally kills more troops than your rally troops amount, even if rally gets swallowed, your hero comes home.

  30. OK, after this i dont have clear what boost i should use/combine when i wanna take a rally to reduce my troop loses, if i want increease my kills i know i musthave attack boost, but what about troops loses? Health or defense?

  31. slaggy, i am sh 14, having 300k troops of t2. i want to focus on defending myself from attacker. in this situation, should i focus on attack debuff ?

    • Your 300K troops aren’t going to survive a 375K T4 shot either way. I would think that you would end up wanting to boost your attack in order to kill as many as possible but I’m not completely sure.

    • With 300k troops I would focus on Fake Rally or Shield. Taking hits is suicide since most will have full marches of T3 or T4

  32. Would you be able to post one of these for trap accounts? For example, a stronghold 21 with ~600K troops or so. I’ve been stacking def, health, and trap gems but after looking at this, I’m beginning to second guess all of that along with some of my gear (Torch and Zeus Staff). From what I have gathered, as a T3 trap facing 375K T4, I should be focusing on Attack debuff and health? I’m thinking the graph would resemble the one for taking a rally.

    • exactly. i have same analogy… will it be better off with attack debuff ?

      • From the looks of it, I would say enemy attack debuff and then health. Enemy attack debuff is tough to get so health will probably be the next best thing. The one thing I’m not sure about is trap attack, trap defense, and troop defense. Right now I have very high trap attack, trap defense, and troop defense. I’m wondering if I’m better off taking out the trap attack gems and tossing in regular cavalry/infantry/ranged attack gems in order to boost their attack stats. I would also probably end up using a different weapon and accessory (Torch and Zeus Staff). Just a quick update, I decided to build a 1.5 mil T1 meat shield for my 600K T3 after reading your trap guide. With adding 1.5 mil more troops, I’m more and more convinced that I should toss the trap gems in favor of regular troop attack gems. Will probably remove the troop defense gems but I’m a bit unsure about that one specifically.

      • Profile photo of Slaggy

        Hi, yes I would definitely get rid of the trap gems with those troop numbers.

      • I think I may be getting ahead of myself but would I be correct in assuming I’d be better off putting skill points towards ranged/cavalry/infantry attack instead of trap attack? Still interested to see what to do with the troop defense and whether or not to spend 50 points on it. Definitely hoping that gets covered in Part 10 of the trap guide. Guess I also need to start looking at finding some new gear instead of the torch and zeus staff since those are mostly trap attack. Thanks again.

    • Profile photo of Slaggy

      Hi, Silverhair has a look into this planned for a future article

      • Thanks. So far I’ve already read that entire guide. Just hoping the next section is up before the next KE. I’m interested to see how this next KE turns out since implementing some recommendations from your guide. Haven’t changed my gear yet but the big thing is that I made that 1.5 mil T1 meat shield, capped myself at 600K T3 troops, and will be expanding my hospital beds from 520K to 680K after knocking down some villas and an extra barracks. It was definitely a lot harder with the new points system during the last KE (600K T3, 125K T3 traps) and when getting hit with cores I was barely breaking even points-wise. I’m thinking with the T1 troops I should be able to hold onto more of my traps, resources, and gold (instant healing T3s).

      • Build enough t1s to be just under the nerf limit the new kvk ke rules favor t1 meat walls

      • I would but I’m trying to keep my power down. I am already at 70 mil power with 1.5 mil T1 and 600K T3. My base power is already around 52 mil or so. Any more than that and it will be tougher to get solo’d.

      • I wouldn’t solo you at that that sort of power you are far to high for a solo trap

  33. Profile photo of x Anarchy xx

    When is defence stats too low? ok, so i understand that health is better in most scenarios than defence. Therefore which would be better stats to have between a and b (a.) Lets say i have a 800% attack a 700 % health and 300 % defence. or (B.) 800% attack 500 % health and 500 % defence.

    Is having 300% defence too low ? …. what is the recommended minimum amount for defence. I am thinking for versatility soloing small to med players and if the case comes defending a single rally.

    Would it be better to attack with (a.) and defend with ( b.)? Lets say my troop count is over 10 mil.

    or would (a ) be better in most scenarios.

  34. Does attack oat decrease your losses as week as attack rebuff? I know there is some turn based battle algorithm

    • Profile photo of Slaggy

      Hi, increasing attack does not decrease your losses which indicate that the battle algorithm is not turn-based.

      • But i am safe to assume that enemy attack rebuff would decrease your losses….and thanks for the work you do! Looking forward to more.

      • Is there a clear way to determine a win or loss for rallies? My friend and I have nearly identical accounts and research, he lost more troops from a rally hit but won the battle. I lost 100k less troops and burned? Both lost less power than attacker but lost more troops. what determines the win/loss?

      • Profile photo of Slaggy

        Hi, it is solely down to the number of units lost (troops plus traps). Whoever loses the most burns.

  35. Question, if you have infantry boost of 500% and troop attack boost of 200% from research and gear, does this mean your infantry attack is at 700%?

  36. Can you tell us the effect of Attack boost or Defense boost used in defending against attacks. In addition to Health gear and hero specking for health (as you show health is the best boost for defending after attack debuff). Many in my alliance want to use a boost too but aren’t sure how popping Attack boost or Defense boost is going to change things.

  37. Hi. I lead many rallies for my alliance and its normal for use to rally opponents with 3-5 times the number of troops we are attacking with, 2.3M. In the case of rallying these opponents I have been focused on Attack boost typically running level 6 cores with Attack boost between 800-1200% for a given troops type. The scenario above has me wondering if defense deduff would be a better way to lead these attacks?

    • Profile photo of Slaggy

      Hi, there are a lot of variables involved but I wouldn’t suugest switching to defense debuff until your opponent is at least 10x your number of troops

      • So if an opponent has anti scout on would you suggest attacking with various troops and your recommended best “combat Attack gear” until you see if they have a weakness to one troop type?

  38. Can anybody explain on Attack Debuff. Here is an exapmple. I have a Jade with 25% Enemy Attack Debuff. My opponent has for example 1000% Attack boost. So does that mean after debuff he will have 850% Attack Boost ?

  39. Anyone know the boost associated with troop type advantage? I could test it but to do so you have to balence boost perfectly with the other teater. It’s a huge pain to do that. Last time i did it it took 2 hours. Had to meticulously reset hero tree 1 click at a time to match to a lower player.

    • I am thinking about coring a big who routinely puts 490k on a tile + hero. Probably all ranged if he is smart.

    • I’ll ask regardless of looking like a noob, but could you explain what the troop type advantage is and how to expect the 100% to affect the hit?

      Much appreciated!

      • Profile photo of Slaggy

        Hi, no problem. When cavalry attack ranged they get a 100% troop attack boost. The same applies to all units when attacking their target troop type. Strategic troops get a 200% boost.

      • Is that 100/200% boost additive to other boosts, or is it a multiplier on total damage?

        So if your infantry have +500% attack from gear/gems/research/etc, then would they have a total of +600% against cavalry? Or would they have +1000% against cavalry?

      • Your not suppose to be following my questions Steel! >.< lol Going to have to hold rss hostage.

        K.. another noob question. I've done alot of testing tracking the percent lost based on the number of troops on each side and how it changes based on what troops are sent. But just delving into how much the percent boosts affect the troops.

        When the attack boosts are applied.. does.. each 20% or 100% basically increase troop power a certain percent?

        Taking a VERY rough example..

        But if I had 100k troops and I applied 20% attack boost.. would those troops then perhaps act like they had maybe 7k more troops? and then the 100% boost would be 5 times more troop power as the 20%?

        I'm atm completely guessing as to the percent increase each 20% and 100% adds.. but I do know 100% isnt double the amount of fighting power. (of course I would have to deduct boosts from the opposite side too.. )

        lol but.. help!!!

  40. Great work on this site!!

    I think the guide to combat boosts needs to be updated though. Strat troops have changed since this was published. Furthermore, The scenarios listed are exactly real world and could give some false representations of how effect a boost is. Most people use heavy attack boosts and debuffs. Why would I be attacking with health and defense being my primary boosts?

    I could be off base but I think the amount of debuff for which it is debuffing should be listed in the example to provide clarity. As always awesome work on this! A few tweaks and I think its gospel.

    • Profile photo of Slaggy

      Hi, excuse my ignorance but how have Strat troops changes in the last month? I absolutely agree that Attack Boost and Attack Debuff are the most efficient in all but a few specific scenarios. That said, troops are expensive and a lot of people understandably will focus on keeping them alive by focussing on Troop Health – even though this isn’t the most efficient choice (and won’t maximise your KvK points).

      • Strat troops are weak against 2 types of troops and very strong against 1 type. Normal are only weak against 1 type and normal attack vs 1 type. A 2 troop type attack with 1 being very strong against the defending strat troop and the other being the second strat troop the defender is weak against, but not the type the defending strat is strong against is very effective. All boost being equal. Do the calculations take this into consideration? I know it is a lot of variables to consider. Is it possible to run the simulations using the normal vs normal– Strat vs strat— Normal vs strat— Strat vs normal? Also, would it be possible to add a wonder battle simulation? 2.375m vs 2.375m.

      • We use your site a lot!! I mean a lot! 🙂 So we base our boosts on what you recommend and sacrifice things like defense boosts to gain in attack and attack debuff.

        I would imagine other do the same. Would the simulations be able to be updated using the recommended boosts to show the results? I can attest to them working but a visual might add a greater level a detail we can use to make a few tweaks.

        As always we love this site!!

      • Profile photo of Slaggy

        Vance, that would be great but as you say there are endless scenarios. I’m sure more insights will come out over time and it is a credit to the game that there is still a lot to be discovered.

  41. What do you mean by tier boost? Is tier 1 the best? Or is tier 1 the best for tier 1 troops?

  42. Defense Debuff is valuable when rallying a target with a ton of troops, according to your charts.

    So, if you are being attacked by a rally, and you have a ton of troops, a Defense Boost should be just as valuable for you, correct?

    When does Defense start to become a valuable stat? When you outnumber by 5 to 1?

    A chart of Defense value at different troop counts would be extremely helpful.

    • Profile photo of Slaggy


      Absolutely right, if you are much stronger than your opponent then defense is a very useful boost. I would say at a minimum of 10 x their troop numbers it start to become better than health boost.

      • Great, so at 5x the troop count, defense would be better than say, infantry attack alone, but not as good as health boost or overall troop attack. So I’d likely gem with defense as the second option after health, unless special gems were available with troop attack or more health. Sound right?

      • Related to this: On your first chart you show that health debuff has no effect for an attacker hitting a massive target. So again, for the inverse, if I have a rally trap with 5x the troops of the incoming rally, is health of very little value to me? Should I instead prioritize defense and attack?

        Thanks. Can’t wait for your Combat Calculator.

      • Profile photo of Slaggy

        Interesting, yes both of these are correct. Health boost is very little use when your losses are low.

      • Thanks. This is good info for your turtle articles then. Most turtle designs will want to prioritize defense and attack, not health. The opposite of your usual set up. That will change gear and gem advice, and maybe research advice.

        Come on Battle Calculator!!!

      • Also, above you said that at 10x troops defense might be equal to health. But that’s not at all what your first graph shows. Your first graph shows a 10x troops battle, and defense would be the best stat available, while health is nearly useless. So again, I wonder where the balance point is for troop count on a trap, where defense should start to be prioritized over health. Can’t be at 10x. Not even close there. Maybe 5x? 2x? Crunch some numbers and let us know. It will help with the turtle designs a lot.

      • Profile photo of Slaggy

        Hi, sorry I think I may have mislead you slightly with my comment.
        Whilst what you have said is correct, defense boost is only better when your losses are very low. By very low I mean around 1% of your total troops (e.g. in the final graph above). And as mentioned, if your losses are that low you have to think is it worth trying to reduce them further or should you just focus on health boost which will be more effective in scenarios where losses are medium or high. The 10x number comes from situations where your defense boost is equal to their attack boost (e.g. the first graph). The higher their attack boost is relative to your defense boost, the higher this multiplier gets.

      • Thanks for the clarification. In my case I’m looking at making a rally trap/turtle with 11.5m T3. Expected losses should be from 200k to 700k, depending on the strength of cores on the rally leader, if my rough math is right. That’s 2% to 6% losses vs total troops. So I’m trying to prioritize stats for that set up.

        More generally, it would be good for you to run some scenarios around turtle designs (solo and rally), and show stat priorities for those builds as part of your ongoing turtle series. Stat priorities may shift some, to at least make defense have decent value, perhaps exceeding the value of individual attack boosts, and maybe eventually exceeding health.

  43. I went through Scenario #1 graph in detail… Ralllying a Huge Target.

    I found it interesting because The Attack Boost and Defense Debuff were very similar. It seems that for Attack boost, it increases in .08% efficiency for every 20% increase in boost while the Defense Debuff increases in .10% efficiency for every 20% increase. Thats atleast for the stats shown on the graph, (i was measuring with a ruler on my computer screen :/ but.. amazingly enough the percent increases were exactly on! imagine that! ) and im guessing it probably increases during the time that one isnt so greatly outnumbered.

    But it makes me wonder. How are those differences determined in the game.. What makes it .08% increase for Attack while greater for Defense Debuff.

    If Defense debuff would take away the oppositions ability to reduce incoming damage…..essentially increasing the amount of incoming damage.. makes me wonder.. if that affect is applied more in troop fighting power (where it acts more on overall fighting power of a city.. in a way.. reducing the number of troops (or outnumberness) in the oppositions city or if it deals directly based on a fixed number of troops that the Troop Defense normally affects.

    I guess overall I’m trying to make sense on how Defense (which numbers is based on troops to be killed.. based on attack and numbers) would save greater troops…

    • I guess a easier way of saying all that is.. If Troop Defense reduces the amount of incoming damage and that is based on number of troops and opponents attack…. How does Defense debuff out perform Troop Attack?

      I’m left having to believe that it also impacts the fighting power of Troops.. essentially making the number of troops act as less troops.

      What has been your experience?

      • Profile photo of Slaggy

        Hi, sorry about the delay! Just as an example if your base attack is 100 and the base defense of your opponent is 100,000 then defense debuff is going to have a much larger impact than boosting your own attack.

      • I’ve gone back and reworked the equation for losses on each side with equal cities – both noob accounts with 0 boosts all with moderate level heros that could skill up different boosts if needed.

        The numbers are similar to my original equation but lower because the noob cities have 0 research and 0 boosts. I’m hoping that this equation is more true to the final outcome after boosts are applied. But I’m not sure how to work with the different attack defense and health boosts in the equation. – Hoping to come up with a specific percent increase .. the work is difficult.

        Do you have any pointers as to how I would apply the attack, defense and health portion of the equation? I’d love to be able to test what I have with different levels of boosts and see if what I have works.

        At a stand-still until I figure this part out.



  44. I’m looking to craft core to take rallies. Due to lack of research I can only craft lvl 5 core at the moment. From what I gather from your explanation here, I should focus mostly on attack boost, correct?

    I read the guide on winning kvk and troop comparison. I’m in the ruling alliance in my kingdom so rally with a lot of stronger players, making me a target being as I’m under 500m power. I have decent gear and currently working on my t1/t2 troop count to take rallies. I currently have 2.5m t4, 6m t3, 1m t2 and 1.2m t1.

    I just don’t want to waste core/pieces doing the wrong thing.

    Thanks in advance and love the site! I’ve learned a lot and use the tools often .

    • Profile photo of Slaggy

      Hi Gary, Attack boost (and attack boost debuff) are by far the most efficient boosts. If you want to get maximum bang for your buck then absolutely focus on these boosts.

  45. Could you do a post on explaining the basic combat dynamics? Eg. I have 500 t3 troops vs 1000 t4s… What values are in play? Just attack and defence? Do these stack together to give 1 big number for attack? Does a total defence value reduce the attack? How does troop health factor into this?

    Good post. On this article, maybe include totals of casualties on both sides on your graphs so it is clearer as to what happened.

  46. The actual boosts are not explained at all. What do they do?? And attack debuff does what exactly and when does it apply (only when attacking?) Same with trap defence…. What is this? (It could be a boost to the killing power of my traps or maybe it lets my troops not be killed when they attack and encounter traps.) Some real clarity is needed as I want to get the gear that does what I want not some other random thing.

  47. Can you explain more the difference between health and def? Its odd to me that defense works best when attacking small targets, but a def. debuf is best for a suicide rally.

    • Profile photo of Slaggy

      Hi, defense reduces the amount of incoming damage. If an opponent has very very high defense (e.g. through having millions of troops) it is possible that no damage will get through. In these scenarios reducing their defense through defense debuff becomes a priority. Similarly, if you are massively stronger than your opponent you can completely remove all damage by focussing on defense.

  48. What about taking a solo hit from a 1 bil 4 tier when your a 100 mil 3 tier

    • Profile photo of silverhair

      100M T3 player should monster a solo hit from a 375k T4 march, assuming that you have a reasonable number of T2-3 troops and you are in your battle hero gear, not research / construction gear. No matter how big they are, they can still only send 375 T4 as max march size.

      • Profile photo of Asylum4Life

        What do you mean “monster a solo hit”? I don’t understand the slang. Sorry.

        The other day for example, I got solo hit from a 8B player in a full set of new Colossus gear, i’m 160M I had around 600k troops, ~200K T3, ~400K T4, and I ended up with 280K in the hospital and killed 58K of his Legions. My gear is crap compared to his.

        IDK, but it felt bad for everyone involved. Now, why he’d attack with Inf with that gear, who knows. I thought it was Cav weighted. Probably just pressed Max Attack or whatever it is called.

  49. MoreMoneyMorePowerNoBrains

    How did the test adjust for the fact that 300% Attack Debuff is not yet possible, unless you include the new Fire Age 2015 gear which is mostly Cavalry-specific Attack Debuff . But still should be short. Whats interesting is even at half the boost compared to the others,its still vastly superior. Health Debuff is even more complicated ,as far as I know theres only 1 item currently that has it.

    I see these new debuff items as new ways to keep Big Spenders spending( nothing new there), but theres also an inherent design to them,apparent from the test results,that MZ is promoting Bullying more than ever before. If you have Attack Debuff Gear on , you can attack the majority of the kingdom all day long,and not lose anything . Thats not strategy. Thats catering to the whales

  50. Which debuff is best if you have 4-6mill Troops and are spezialised in Taking rallies?

  51. Great number. The process is very scientific. Will you be sharing an excel version of your calculator anytime soon? I’m a number cruncher myself and was looking to develop my own battle simulator.

    Your Alliance is lucky to have you

  52. Great write up and website. I just found this a couple of days ago. If I’m reading this correctly, you are saying that it is best to max troop health when taking a rally from a more powerful hero? I have been pretty successful maxing out troop defense, but your numbers indicate that maximizing troop health would be even better. Is that correct? Thanks again.

    • Profile photo of Slaggy

      Unless your losses are very low then yes, that seems to be the case.

      • Hey Slaggy. So for my rally trap, with 11.3m T3, it seems that defense boosts would actually start to be very beneficial, correct? I’d love to know where the value of the defense boost starts to catch up to health and attack. You have a chart showing the value of defense if you are taking a rally and have only 5m troops. Can you show the value if you have 10m or more?

  53. You must have run these tests using some kind of simulator because there’s no way you spent the money to actually test out these numbers.
    How then can we trust your numbers?

  54. Thanks for the reseach – very useful. One question: If you are a trap taking rallies, are you better off using attack boost or enemy attack debuff? Thanks!

  55. Based on this research how does your list of best gear change?

  56. I like the Slaggy approach to battle mechanics. Clinical !!!

  57. Great job on the research, thanks!

  58. xxxSALTHEART #136

    Dude…..what an outstanding effort. Big props.

  59. I ran alot of tests on t3 accounts same research same buildings, I created multiple same gear but on the gear I switched gems. While attacking and defending I found defense and health debuffs and bonuses to be excatly the same. If a person stacks health bonuses ofc health debuff going to be better but if the person has equal all i believe through my testing defense = health.

    • What numbers were you looking at in your testing? From my experience, I always have to start out with how many troops each side has, and then apply the debuffs and boosts.

      If the numbers in testing stayed relatively in the same range, it is possible to have your results.

      Would love to hear more specific info.. as it would share more insight as to what you experienced. Thanks!

  60. I have been waiting for this and the battle calculator for some time now! Great Job on the article. My question is focused on troop attack gear/ trap attack gear. I am currently a SH19 with 300k T3. 8/7 combat research and 8/7 trap research. I also have 270k Beds. I am only hero level 49, so my gear is sub par, but i need some suggestions on gear to craft at 50. With a wall full of T3 traps and 300k T3 troops (balanced evenly), would trap attack gear be better for absorbing hits, or attack gear? I do not want to focus on a single troop, as i am on defense. And also, what gems are best for said gear? I was planning on Hectors gear, with a trap attack, health and defense/troop attack gem in each item, but with recent findings, i am debating on this.

    Would it be ideal to craft the trap attack centered gear: Hector’s.. and place a trap attack gem and health gem in each, while the last gem is a troop attack? So i would have two gems for Infantry attack, two for Calvary, and two for ranged? (seen as thought the extra accessory slot is still locked)

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