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Guide to Solo Defense Turtles in Game of War – Hero Gear (Part 11)


Welcome to a very much belated Part 11 of our guide to Turtle Accounts in Game of War.  This part will be focused on the relative importance of various boosts to a turtle, and discuss what it means for your approach to putting together a set of hero gear for your turtle.  Part 10 of this guide looked at ways in which you can get your turtle to roughly 300% health and 300% defense, with a view to minimising the risk of being hit by a full set of Xena valentine gear with health / defense debuff, which could reduce your health by 100%, dropping you to 200% troop health.

This part of the guide is going to answer some very long-standing questions on the relative importance of difference defensive and attacking boosts to a turtle, and then look at the options for level 50 permanent hero gear.  The initial focus is on level 50 special event gear, with the following part to focus on bargain gear, pre-50 gear, and core/relics that can be used to buff your hero.  Make no mistake, success in this game is heavily reliant on how well you equip your hero, particularly as a turtle, because your hero can be up to 80% of the strength of your combined army.  Without a hero, or with a very weak hero, your defensive army is nowhere near as strong as it could be.  But before we get to that, we need to have a strong understanding of the relative value of each of the boosts.

Testing 75% boosts on a 600k T3 Turtle

So, let’s get started testing the relative importance of various 75% combat boosts on a turtle with 600k balanced regular T3, and 125k T3 traps.  The baseline setup for this defending hero is roughly in line with what we discussed in Part 10.  The Troop Health boost was 292.5% and Troop Defense was 295%, with overall troop attack at ~75%, each of the individual troop attacks around 130% (evenly balanced), and trap attack at just over 200%.  Attacking hero is as per previous tests, with all tests performed using 250k Balanced strategic T3.

A baseline attack was done using the above boosts, and then subsequent to that, identical attacks were made against a defender that sequentially added a 75% troop health boost (3 x 25% troop health gems added to chalices).  Troop health boost was removed by unequipping the chalices.  Then 75% troop defense was added, and attack repeated.  Once the troop defense boost had worn off, this was repeated with a 75% troop attack boost.  Then a 75% trap attack boost was created by using a mix of trap attack gems and harvest gems.  Exactly 75% trap attack was boosted, although it did also come with a small amount of trap defense in addition.

Attacker Troop and Trap LossesWhat is most apparent here is that the defender ‘won’ each battle, as these were T3 to T3 comparisons, with the attacker losing more troops than the defender lost of both troops (to hospital) and traps (destroyed).  Defense and Health both clearly reduce the defender’s losses, and by about the same amount, without increasing the attacker’s losses (of course).  Trap attack and troop attack kill quite a bit more of the attackers troops, with troop attack doing a better job than trap attack in a turtle with 600k T3 troops and 125k regular T3 traps.

Trap losses by boosts

When you look at traps lost, what is interesting to note is that troop health and defense both reduce the number of traps lost by the defender.  There is a small reduction with trap attack, but this is most likely because the trap attack tests included a small trap defense boost in the harvest gems used to make up the 75% trap attack.

The next analysis looks at KDR, kill death ratio.  In this analysis we are only going to look at troop losses, and ignore the trap losses.  In the baseline, the attacker loses 68776 T3, whilst the defender has 59607 T3 hospitalised.  So, in this instance the KDR is 1.15, being 68776 / 59607.

Boost Type KDR
Baseline (no added boosts) 1.15
Defense 75% 1.25
Health 75% 1.25
Trap attack 75% 1.28
Troop attack 75% 1.37

This is a standard way of comparing the value of a reduction in losses vs an increase in kills.  In this instance, because we are basically comparing T3 vs T3, the incremental differences in KDR will line up almost identically with changes in power destroyed.

A further analysis of this data looks at all the incremental improvements over baseline, and then compares them to the troop health boost, i.e. we divided everything by 1.15 (the baseline KDR), and then normalised the results against troop health by dividing the other results by the Troop Health results.

Relative importance of boosts compared to troop health

Everything is standardised against a comparator of Troop Health, which has a rating of 1.00.  As can be seen, in this instance, troop defense is as good as troop health, and ever so minimally better.  Trap attack is 1.3 times as effective at increasing KDR when compared the Troop Health in this turtle with 600k T3 troops and 125k T3 traps.  And Troop Attack (overall troop attack), is 2.3 times as effective as Troop Health at increasing KDR.  So here is your hierarchy of boosts for a T3 turtle with a plain vanilla number of T3 troops and T3 traps.  1) Troop attack  2) Trap attack and then equal third is troop defense and troop health.

Thus, if your turtle build is a plain vanilla T3 turtle, you have a mix of options that you can consider for hero gear.  If you have spend any time looking at hero gear, you will know that there are no pieces of hero gear that boost OVERALL troop attack that require only standard materials.  Every piece of combat gear that boosts troop attack requires special event materials.  When you look at the Guide to Combat Gear at the Defense tab, you will see that it is pretty much dominated by pieces that boost troop attack.  And that is because Troop Attack is at least twice as valuable as Troop Health and Troop Defense.

Test Series 2 – boosts by increasing army size

All of the above analysis has been done on a Turtle which has 600k T3 troops and 125k T3 traps.  If you have been following this guide, you will be well aware that a lot of the discussion has been about leveraging Asymmetry 1, that as defender you have unlimited march size, whilst the attacker is limited to a 375k Maximum march size.

Part 5 showed 5 model armies of a hypothetical 16M troop power, with varying compositions of T1, T2 and T3 troops.  The first model, Model 1 was 8M T1 troops, with no T2 or T3 troops.  This was the prototypical model for exploiting asymmetry 1, going with a very high number of lower tier troops for the highest Strength / power ratio.

To do this series of tests, we put an series of progressively larger armies on an encampment with a hero, then hit it with the same attack each time.  All of the tests were scaled 1000:1, so a 1M T1 army was downscaled to 1000 T1, and a 375k T3 attacking army was scaled down to 375 T3 troops.  Obviously there are NO TRAPS in this test series, so trap attack is not tested.  The first set of runs was a baseline run using the same above hero with ~300% troop health, ~300% troop defense and 75% troop attack.  375 T3 vs 1000 T1, then 375 T3 vs 2000 T1, then 375 T3 vs 3000 T1, up to and including 8000 T1 as the scaled version of the 8M T1 monster.  Then the second series of tests added on top of that baseline a 75% troop health boost, again repeating the 1000 to 8000 T1 sequence.  Then 75% defense with the 1000-8000 sequence, then 75% troop attack with the 1000-8000 T1 sequence.  This there were a total of 32 attacks performed.

Analysis of these attacks was done by doing a strength adjusted KDR.  So each T3 killed was given a weighting of 3, whilst T1 were given a weighting of 1.  This is in line with the strength numbers for each of the troop tiers presented in Part 5 of this series.

The strength adjusted KDRs are then plotted for each of the boosts by the increase in army size.  Going from left to right are the series of tests at 1000 T1, all the way up to 8000 T1.

Strength Adjusted KDR

The most important thing to note here is that as the Defending Army Size increases, there is a NON-LINEAR improvement in Kill Death Ratio.  That means that there is a big advantage in progressively larger defending army.  The purple line is our baseline of ~300% troop health and defense, and it is clear that increasing army size is a very important factor in how effective the defending army is at killing the attacker’s troops.  This is why I always try and build large defensive armies.

The second thing to note is that there is clearly an advantage in adding boosts on top of baseline, with Troop Attack in red performing the best.  When we adjust the data so that it looks at the relative differences between the additional boosts on top of baseline, we see a very interesting phenomenon.

Army size plus boosts

Looking at the relative value of boosts compared to baseline on KDR, it is clear that Troop Attack is again the most valuable boost, particularly compared to Troop Health.  In this instance, Troop attack is at least 3 times as valuable as troop health.  The interesting phenomenon is obviously the increasing value of Troop Defense as the defending army size gets larger.  At the equivalent of 8M T1, Troop Defense is just short of being more important than Troop Attack at improving the KDR.

The third thing to note is that the 2000 T1 army is roughly equivalent in strength to the 600k T3 army shown in the first series of tests.  And the conclusion in that series of tests was that troop health and troop defense were roughly equivalent.  Here you can see that it is at that 2000 T1 (equivalent to 600k T3) that troop health and troop defense cross over, with troop defense becoming increasingly more valuable compared to troop health.

If we think back to part 5, looking at our model armies, this table looked at the overall Troop Strength of the armies.  The sequence of army troop strengths is 8, 4, 3.5, 2.5, 2 in decreasing order, as per the below chart.Army build table

Even though not technically 100% accurate, we can get a rough estimation of the relative value of troop health and troop defense for each of these models by overlaying their relative positions as equivalents of army strength by T1 numbers.  So the above chart shows strength of 8, being 8M T1 equivalents.  Likewise, the 666k T3 model is very close in strength to the 2M T1 that is modeled in the second series of tests above with 2000 T1.


By doing this overlay, you should be able to get a sense of the relative importance of health and defense for the army that you have in your stronghold.  Model 5 has health and defense basically equivalent.  Models 2 and 3 have defense as almost twice as valuable as health.  Model 1 is the standout case, where defense is at least 3 times as important as troop health.  But in each case, troop attack remains the most important overall boost.


So, that just about finally brings us to hero gear.  The one thing to say up-front is that there is no one perfect way to compare hero gear that makes sense for each and every individual account.  This site has a series of different ways of looking at hero gear, being Attack, Defense, Bargain (standard materials) and Suicide.  The closest of those 4 weightings of hero gear for the purposes of a turtle, is the Defense tab, not surprisingly.  The weightings of this model has troop attack as the highest, and troop health and troop defense being very similar.  As you can see from the above chart, there will be turtle accounts out there for whom troop defense is significantly more important than troop health, because of the large size of their defending T1-T2 army.

As always, the hero gear that is best for your account can only be determined by the materials you have at your disposal.  If you have lots of special event materials, then you will have a very good chance of crafting a capable set of hero gear.  The quickest and most effective way thus far to build a highly capable set as someone willing to spend to get special event materials has been to wait for the Legendary Xena packs that have 75 legendary Xena chests.  These contain only level 4-6 materials from the materials required to craft Xena gear, and also include Rose Gems, which combine Troop attack and Troop health.  The main reason the Xena sets are the best all-round defensive sets are because they focus on OVERALL troop boosts, i.e. troop health, troop defense, troop attack, trap attack, troop defense debuff, troop attack debuff, troop health debuff.  There are no individual troop attack or individual troop defense boosts in these sets.  They are general, all-round, and give you the greatest chance of fending off whatever single troop type attack is thrown at you.

With the Xena set, there are a number of pieces which have very good qualities in purple as well as gold, particularly the earlier sets of focusing on attacking and defending situations, using troop defense debuff and troop attack debuff.  The third set of Xena Valentine gear which have a mix of troop attack, troop health debuff and troop defense debuff, have quite marked dropoff in quality for purple items when compared to gold legendary crafting.

The ones that drop off quite markedly in quality from gold to purple are the red-colored Valentine set, the Needled Heart, Risque Gown, Pumps of Peril, and Vulture Tiara, and to a lesser extent the Hoops of Heartbreak.  They all remain extremely capable pieces of hero gear, basically topping each of the defensive list categories, at least until the new Kunoichi Xena set has just been released today.  These appear to have a much greater focus on Troop Defense, even more so that the original Xena defense set (pale blue set), and no doubt we will have them added to our Combat gear list very soon.  But pieces with 50% troop defense, as well as the addition of up to 30% troop defense debuff resistance, will no doubt rocket these to the top of the defensive list.



With Helmets, the Vulture Tiara is a standout, and soon to be replaced by the Kunoichi’s Mask, which offers 50% defense, 20% health, and a massive 55% troop attack debuff!!!

Outside these two more recent Xena options, the slightly older Mysterious Guise is extremely capable, and more useful for a turtle in my opinion than the Xena’s Crown.  The Xena’s crown is very much a favourite of turtles, because it can be crafted with standard materials only, and it clearly tops the list of Helmets from the Bargain list.  Having said that, I prefer the mix of 40% troop defense and 33% enemy troop attack debuff that comes with the Mysterious Guise, particularly for my 8M T1 turtle where Troop Defense is very important.  If you have a higher weighting on troop attack in your personal hierarchy of troop boosts, then the standout pieces are the Reaper’s hood and the Arena Mask, both of which offer very capable troop attack boosts, with a mix of lower amounts of troop health or troop defense.  The Reaper’s hood is notoriously hard to craft due to the requirement of 2 ripped hearts, and the Arena Mask is much easier to craft, as it requires only 1 rare special event material (turkey feather), but that is much easier than 2 ripped hearts.  It also helps that the Arena Mask is pre-level 50 hero gear, as is the very capable Eyepatch.  The only piece from the Fire Age gear set that I will add to this list is the Helm of Fire, and there are a number of reasons for that.  Firstly, it is one of only a handful of pieces from the Fire Age gear set that does not lose 40-50% of its value in going from gold to purple, and still has extremely capable boosts at purple.  Its use of ranged attack is useful for those attacking with a ‘queue max’ infantry attack, as well as allowing for an almost 50% upkeep reduction as a purple piece.  As a turtle with 8M T1, having a 50% upkeep reduction added on to a large upkeep reduction boost (another 50%), means that you can run around accumulating food from farms waiting to be hit, and know that if you get hit, you will still have food left to instant heal your T1 troops.  The same goes for the Hell Vent Helm and the Flame-crested helm, but I find the Helm of Fire the most useful in dealing with what remains the most common attack, queue max infantry.


Armor defense gear

From an armor perspective, as expected, the two most recent Xena options, the Kunoichis Cloak and the Risque Gown are the standouts.  After them, the Feathered Fortress armor and Violent Beauty Tutu are extremely capable pieces, and which one you use depends upon the relative importance to you of troop defense vs troop attack.  On my turtle I have one of each, and I use them differently depending upon the situation.  But they really are neck and neck when it comes to overall effectiveness.  Some people prefer the troop attack of the tutu, some the defense of the fortress armor, and some decide based upon how the dress will go with their shoes.  Hera’s gown also offers a gold coloured dress option, depending upon accessories, and is an extremely capable piece of gear.  The other major piece that gets used defensively is the Hogzilla’s Cape, but that is really quite ugly, and doesn’t go with any accessories.  Having said that, its mix of high troop defense (39%), plus high trap attack (38%), plus high ranged attack (41%), makes is a particularly useful piece against the standard queue max infantry attack.  In a similar vein, the Phoenix breastplate with 45% troop health, 15% troop defense debuff and 55% ranged attack will do some serious damage against a queue max infantry attack, but is not the most flexible defensive piece against ranged or cavalry attacks.  It is however slightly easier to craft than many other recent fire age gear in that it ONLY requires 1 blue flame……


Feet defense gear

There are not a lot of good footwear options, compared to the other categories.  There really is the Xena Valentine Pumps of Peril and the newly released Xena Kunoichi Tabi Boots.  The Tabi Boots, with 55% trap attack, 33% troop attack, 40% troop defense, and 40% enemy troop attack debuff are just phenomenal.  There is a big gap between first and second, and a huge gap between these two and everything else.  In line with the best available gear, you lose around 40% of the overall effectiveness of both of these pieces when going from gold to purple.  It just may be however that a level 5 purple example of the Tabi Boots end up placing third on the defensive combat list.

I do not consider the Phoenix boots to be a defensive piece.  Yes, they have great set of boosts, but requiring 3 blue flames puts them strongly in the realm of the biggest solo attackers and rally leaders.  That brings us to the Undeniably Elite Toe Shoes (trap attack, enemy attack debuff), and then a bit of a jump down after that.  The new Geta footwear with a nice mix of troop attack and troop defense are a nice entry to the defensive list.  Again, I do not really consider the Slag Stomper Boots (Fire Age Set) as good defensive boots, and would prefer to wear Harvest boots (troop defense, troop health, inf attack), Leonidas Sandals (troop defense, troop health) or Poseidons Tail (troop defense, troop attack) over the Slag Stomper boots when defending.  The ones that are the disappointing ones are the Fatal Toe Shoes from the Xena set, which with their enemy defense debuff and march speed are not all that useful for turtles.  The Stone Poleyn are another nice recent entry to the list, with their dual troop mix of cav and ranged attack along with troop health.  It really is the Stone Poleyn and the Harvest boots neck and neck in the pre-50 category, as will be discussed in part 12 of this guide.


Weapon defense gear

There also somewhat limited options in the weapons stakes.  The weapons as a rule tend to have a greater attacking focus (particularly compared with armor).  As such, there tends to be more focus on single troop boosts in weapons.  Until now it has all been about the Needled Heart, but this has been replaced at the top of the list by the Kunoichi Machete, with 50% troop defense, 40% troop health and 25% troop attack boosts.  Beyond that, the there are three standouts.  There are two options from the fire age set, the Damascus Steel Fire sword, and the Spear of Fire.  Both of these are extraordinarily expensive at 350M silver, but both of them only lose a reasonable amount of effectiveness when going from gold to purple.  Unlike the rest of the fire age set which loses 40%, these lose around 20% when stepping down from level 6 to level 5.  The damascus steel requires a blue flame, whereas the spear of fire does not require this most rare of beasts.  The Hydra Fang Blades are an outstanding offensive weapon, and whilst they have great combat boosts, I don’t like them as a defensive piece, as they are too uni-dimensional on infantry attack.  The troop defense debuff is nice, but not ideal for turtles.  That really just leaves us with the excellent Jade Legend (hero level 45), but this can be hard to get the materials for, and the Shield from Foes, which is a true defensive piece with 30% troop defense and 33% troop attack debuff, but again this requires Demon Tails, which are one of the rarest materials in GoW.  There are quite a few very capable weapons below this top 7 list, but I have not gone into them mainly for space reasons.  Alot of them have single or dual troop attack focuses, and ones such as the razorback axe which have ranged and cavalry attack can be very useful against infantry and ranged attacks respectively, but I still prefer to focus on balanced gear when building defensive gear sets.


Accessory Defense gear

The list of defensive accessories is dominated by the most recent fire age set released., with a neck and neck fight between the Phoenix Chaos and the new Xena Kunoichi Kurai, with its mix of 30% troop defense debuff resistance, 45% troop defense, 35% troop health, and 20% troop attack debuff.  Again, this will be very capable at a purple level, even if it loses almost 40% of its effectiveness.  I am ruling out the 4 fire age pieces from contention, because they all require at least 2 blue flames, and more likely 3 blue flames.  Their boosts are quite balanced, with only a small focus on ranged attack (Phoenix blaze), or Infantry attack (Lava Wielders).  Again, these pieces are very expensive, and if you are in zone of having multiple blue flames in your account, you are most likely going to end up as a rally leader, not a turtle.

Looking at the Xena set, the Hoops of heartbreak, Enchanted Bracelet and Violent Beauty Wings all remain extremely capable pieces.  My go-to piece as a turtle is the Violent Beauty Wings, mainly because the drop-off from gold to purple is very acceptable, and it only requires 1 piece of wax, whereas the Enchanted bracelet requires 2 pieces of wax.  Hoops of Heartbreak requires wax + demon tails + ripped hearts, so you have to be pretty lucky to get enough for one of those.  Jenocide requires 2 ripped hearts, and isn’t as capable as the Violent Beauty Wings, so you won’t be surprised to find the wings as my preferred accessory.  I like to save the demons tails and ripped hearts for other pieces like the Pumps of Peril in footwear.

Accessories is the hardest slot to fill when it comes to pre level 50 hero options, as well as in Bargain gear.  And this is what we will discuss in the next part of this series.  We will explore your options on how to equip your hero with bargain gear, level 40-49 hero gear, and core/relic gear that can complement deficiencies in pre-50 hero gear.  That post will incorporate discussion of how gear that boosts trap attack can be used, as most of the attack focus discussion here has been on overall troop attack.  The next post will no doubt feature heavily our Combat Gear tool, which has tools for both Bargain hero gear using only standard materials, as well as a filter that allows for examination of pre-50 hero gear options.  And it will also feature our Boost Finder tool, which will help us locate cores / relics with a specific series of boosts that we are trying to augment.  And then with one final post, we will wrap up this series of posts with a summary of how to build a solo march turtle.


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  1. would be greatly helpful to know what chests some of these gear comes from 🙂

  2. Profile photo of ljs9000

    Hey silverhair,

    When will the article be released on the nerf limit tests?

    Also, this article shows that defense boosts are more effective than health, whereas every other combat guide that I have ever read suggests otherwise. Is this because the turtle in the given scenario is so much stronger than the attacking March? (As defense boosts are only known to be stronger against weak opponents) if so, would this not have been the result if say the attacker was using missile cores?

    • Profile photo of silverhair

      Test it yourself. I don’t believe that troop defense is stronger against weak opponents. I believe defense is stronger when there is a large imbalance in the troop numbers. The strength of the attacker doesn’t change in this test, only the relative number of troops. There is a reason the Kunoichi set has higher defense boosts than health boosts…….

      • Hey silverhair,

        do you feel a sh18 turtle with massive amount of troops is still viable for kvk ke ? would you change anything drastic from the guide here with the new gear/cores/lvl 60/sh22/etc. ?

        thanks for all your valuable input, keep up the good work.

      • Profile photo of ljs9000

        Interesting. Thanks.

        When can we expect the next article in the series? I have been eagerly awaiting your findings on the nerf limits for t1/t2 troops. My turtle is at the point where only the strongest cored players are willing to hit it, so knowing the limits of its potential will be very useful.

  3. smashed into an amazing Turtle this weekend. Props to Achilles. He wasted me – I play fast and loose, so I think I had an okay hero (51) with mostly T4 and some T3 but not maxed. And I lost it all. But, has me rethinking the game, finding this tight blog and contemplating $200 towards 320K gold and 320K 3 day speed ups which would be 14 million troops and some decent defensive armor.

    • Bob… if you are going to troll, you shouldn’t post your picture. The life of a turtle has changed significantly in the last 45 days. It seems the “I spend $5,000 therefore I deserve to smash whatever the hell I choose” camp as won out over perhaps the only viable playstyle on a budget. Go ahead and dump your $200 bones into building a turtle and watch it all vaporize when one of the wonder fighters ports in fully cored and spams multiple hits on you.

      • is the turtle build really dead ? i have been building mine for like 2 months, have this all been in vain ? WTF

      • Yeah… unless you are in a server that’s relatively new, lvl 60 hero + cores has made playing a turtle non viable if not impossible. When this article was written, no one expected you to be soloed if your power was over 100M… on my server people dive in (and win) if you are under 1B.

      • Nester…..I would say a non spender trap days are over…..but i am 96 mil trap with 4 bil power destroyed and 115 mil. kills…..I can win any hero 60 glowing non core hit. So you trap and stay away from cores . I play all kvk long and am never idle unless I want to be. I am now about to introduce my hybrid, 76 mil trap…upon tests does the same . Can win any 600k march from hero 60/ non core……

      • yes, my server is relatively new (2.5 months old?) but the way this game is with its pay to win mentality, we will have lvl 60 heroes in ridiculous cores in no time i’m sure.

        you feel there is still a way to go out and bait smaller players and shield before a big guy comes, or should i just give up right now ?

        i’m at the point where i’ll have to spend soon enough to get some defensive gear, waiting on packs with good defensive gear, but if turtles are doomed, why bother ? (I’m a SH18 turtle too, which i guess is even more screwed)

        should i just give up now ?

      • simon, do not give up. As long as you can craft gear that puts you 700+ in attack/health and defense you are able to take on any 600k non core march. It is all about the gear but with the new packs anyone can get 700+ gear.

  4. Profile photo of Mazeska

    I absolutely love your articles and this website! I wanted to know if there is any chance of you writing up a large solo tank article 150m-225m power. I am a budget player about $45 spent, 30m kills; I started my small tank about 4 months ago. I did the whole SH 14 tank thing, completed all research and then escalated to SH 18 because core hits hurt so bad. At SH18 decided once finished research to go to SH21 because again cores have become more menacing. Finally at SH 21 and all reg T4 research complete as well as full wall research, I was at about 125m power and still the best core player could fill beds. I then went to lvl 7/8 on the def tree made full T4 traps and a 750k T4 troops, I am finally able to take hits from the best cores and not exceed my 630k beds, zero troop loss. I was able to make some good gear thanks to blue flames being added to the “still” achievable events at my level. By the way even at 200m power I am getting constantly solo hit by aggressive kingdoms. I would love to see a write up with suggestions and graphs for this type solo tank.

    Thanks again,

  5. with all the new gear set released since this was written, is it still the most efficient to get the xena packs and gear ? an update to turtle gear would be an awesome post for the future. thanks for the great work

    • Profile photo of silverhair

      The Legendary Xena packs have not been seen in the wild for many months now. I do not expect them to return. Instead it will remain a mix of thousands and thousands of mixed chests of varying utility, pushing you inexorably towards VIP 12 (open all chests) and VIP 13 (combine all). As for updates to best defensive hero gear, that is pretty much taken care of by the quick updates to the Defense tab of our Best combat gear.
      This post gives you a bit of a guide on how to make decisions on which gear is right for your setup, and the best combat gear gives you more of a weighted boost view of the world. In the end, you have to make the decision based upon the materials available in your account.

  6. Profile photo of 8CH 8CH

    When can we expect the next article to come out regarding bargain gear and relics?

    • Profile photo of silverhair

      I have changed my mind, and am not going to write a bargain and relic / core article. Hero 51-60 release basically means that you need level 50 defensive hero gear to compete in any sustainable way.

  7. Hi Silver. Any update on when you will be publishing this. I also have a couple of quick questions that maybe you could answer in the interim: Has your testing been only been done at sh21 or have you tried lower lvl strongholds too? And have you tried 8M T1 alongside T2s or T3s or was it only as a single tier army?

    • Profile photo of silverhair

      Yes, I have tried mixed T1-2 armies, as well pure T1 armies. My turtles never have any more than 300k T3, and I only use the T3s for attack. Usually I prefer no T3s at all. Because of my love of the strength of a mass army of T1s, all my turtles are sh21, because that has been the only way of getting sufficient barracks capacity to use 3-day speeds. That may change if MZ continue their 50% troop training capacity days, and people use the additional skill points to expand troop training capacity by up to another 30%.

  8. Does Defense boosts overtake Attack at any time? As a trap account, since I am hospitalizing (and healing) my troops each attack, my troop count is continuuing to grow. The analysis stops at 8M, Could there be a test of higher incremental troop counts? 10M, 15m. Thanks.

  9. Kind of off topic but, I’m having issues with how the KE have been going. Lately, hospitalized troops are the same as killing troops in points, respectively. Is there a way I can determine who to taunt so I kill more of them than they hospitalize on me? My little 7m sh 16 can take on a 30-50m guy’s attack and do some good damage, but I’d like to minimize the hospitalized troops so I get more points than they do.

  10. Profile photo of Jason

    I followed the model with 8M T1 at SH18 and I cannot get 400% health and defense unless I am using cores. Hero Skills only give 100% each, buildings specifically hospitals do not give boosts at SH 18 and I am only able to research to lvl 6 in combat = 31% boost. On hero gear even Samurai and Kuniochi gear gives a max of 30-40% at 6 pieces of gear only get 180% boost. What am I doing wrong?

    • Profile photo of silverhair

      Go back and review part 10 which looks at sources of boosts. Your decision on sh18 may be holding you back if you have lots of hospitals. 15 hospitals at sh21 gives you 75% troop health boost. 15 barracks at sh21 gives you 150% troop defense. Only you can choose which stronghold level to finish at. The only additional source of boosts not mentioned is gems. With a mix of health, defense, minotaur, shadow, father time, mother earth, rose, hallows gems etc, it is quite possible to go well past 300% health and defense boost.

  11. Does anybody know about the t1/t2 diminishing return limits that MZ came out with around October 2014? A friend of mine did some testing and he noticed that his t2 troops became “weaker than bricks” (as he put it) after he had over 8mil t2s but I am unsure about t1s. Slaggy does talk about having 8mil t1s and I wanted to know if anybody has experienced any of these effects??

    • T1 and T2 nerf begins at 5 million troops an or SH 15

      • Profile photo of silverhair

        I have tested both T1 and T2 NERF limits. Will put out an article specifically about it. The T1 NERF limit is clearly higher than 8M T1, or else I would not have suggested 8M T1 as a model for testing in parts 5 and 6 of this series.

  12. Hey Silverhair. Thank you for the articles. They have been very helpful. I’m working on a T1 turtle w/T3 traps, both being strats. My question after reading your trap article is should I forgot about the traps completely or should I use a difderent tier of traps?

  13. Enjoy reading your guides silverhair. They have been very helpful. My question is im currently building a T1 turtle but have decided to put in T3 traps of which both troops and traps are strats. Am I waisting my time with building the traps and just stick with the T1 troops or should I consider using lower tier traps?

  14. So started crafting Fatal Toe Shoes, then read how poor they are! Should I cancel the crafting and save my material for something else? I know I lose half the silver, but do I get the materials back? Ugh

  15. Thanks for the great info. It’s up to all of us to see how it applies to each of our set ups.
    Question….just went over battle reports from kvk, and on unusually high loss hit, it says my hero wasn’t there, but I did nothing to move or do anything with him. Any clue what may be going on?
    Again, thank you for the valuable info!!!!.

  16. I may have some information on why Slaggy is getting the discrepancies in the health vs. defense data.

    From an anecdotal perspective, people are starting to recognize that the more troops you have (or more strength of your defensive army), the more defense matters. I believe defense to be a function of troop power whereas health is an individual unit attribute.

    As an example… if a T1 infantry has an attribute of 1 health and you have 500% health, then the T1 infantry is calculated in the battle calculation as having 5 health. (attack vs. health tells you how many troops die)

    If you have 1000 T1 infantry (a base army “strength” of 1000) and you have 500% defense, then your overall army strength is calculated in the battle calculation as 5000. (by modifying the defenders strength, a defending army can achieve a glorious victory without actually having 2x the attackers power)

    This wouldn’t show up in the calculations that slaggy is running for a couple of possible reasons. 1. he has drawn his linear regressions using tier 1 troops (presumably because they are cheaper and are likely to have a base factor of a 1 making the ability to see patterns more likely) 2. his calculations don’t “break” at the sample size he is taking. 3. The advantages of defense over health would only show up significantly using higher tiered troops where similar troop numbers would have markedly different results.

    It would be great to know if anyone has figured out the stats of each troop (attack, defense, health)

  17. I just have to say, great article. I’ve followed most of your recommendations for months now. With just shy of 30m kills, almost 900m power destroyed, and all that from a sub 50m trap account… Great job man! Your exactly correct in that you must know your account. When I set 2 or more tiles deep within a hive, I have time to figure out to shield or just take it. Many times I’ve taken 3-5 hits without needing to heal if its guys under 500m. I’ve tested mine out with various hero gear, various health/defense/attack boosts and can’t 100% accurately validate these results, they APPEAR to be dead on. I just have changed way to many variables to say with 100% assurance… I just have to watch out for those fully cored 6b guys that seem to wanna leave the wonder battles to come shove a missile down my throat! 🙂 Keep up the awesome work!

  18. At the end, as other results have been wrong.
    Please advise.
    Real World Results.

  19. Turltes, by their very nature, are not yet “mature” t4 accounts.
    Thus, they need to know “real world” results on turtle attacks.
    Nothing less will do…
    Please advise…

    • Profile photo of silverhair

      I agree and disagree. I agree in that turtles as I have described them here are not T4 accounts. I completely disagree that they are not mature. If someone has taken a mature decision to build a turtle / trap, done all their work, and got to the point of realising that their academy is no longer required and deconstruct it, because they know their account and know what it can handle, then I would call that a mature account. But by the time they get to that point, they have usually taken enough real world hits to know what it can handle. That to me is a mature account. T4 or not T4 is irrelevant.

  20. Hi. Great series of articles, but still “tricky” for us newer players to get a handle on. With the new cores available, and multiple rapid attacks being the new strategy, a turtle has NO time to decide whether to take hits, or shield. There is less than 3 seconds to make all of those decisions. I don’t even have time to look at even one players hero gear before i have to make a decision. So, in my opinion, if I’m going to unshield, and attract an attack, i need to be ready for “anything” (short of a rally, which i have time to think about, and respond accordingly). My sh21 40 mill trap had been doing quite well, until last week when i got hit by a 2 bill with 7 cores, AND, within 1 second, a 600 mill with Fire Age Gear.
    I didn’t do very well 🙁
    So, can you please do some “real world tests”, and answer the question…..
    “What does it probably take to WIN a multi – rapid attack from 2 or 3 REALLY big guys.
    Not a rally, just 3 powerfull attacks. This will serve us better to “get ready”. The research and hero gear makes such a HUGE DIFFERENCE, that straight comparisons simply don’t work.
    And there is no time to make shield/not shield decisions. We, of course, craft the best equipment we can, but, if we had that much money, we’d be a 1 bill powerhouse, so saying “craft better gear” doesn’t cut it. Even though I know have a trillion farm accounts (seems that way), I can afford the silver, but I don’t have the materials, so it doesn’t matter anyways. So……How many troops and traps does it take, and what mix?
    With the new power points system, the amount of hospitals simply equals “expensive repairs”, or “inexpensive repairs”. Trap salvaging is a joke, so I don’t even let it enter my thoughts. Whatever salvage I get is just a bonus.
    Thanks in Advance!

    • Profile photo of silverhair

      Part 7 of this guide has a real world S4 hit on a real world turtle. I am struggling with your use of the phrase ‘real world test’. If it is a test setup, then it is not ‘real world’. If it is ‘real world’, i.e. a Kill Event, then you cannot control all the variables like you do in a test.

      I agree that trap salvaging is a joke. I still think hospitals are extraordinarily valuable for turtles, even if the points system shifts them from a major factor in reducing points given up to merely something that lets you instant-heal your T1s ready for the next attack.

      Whenever I have been double or triple-teamed in ‘real life’ KEs, I immediately go to my hospitals, and get ready to heal as fast as I possibly can. I run T1s as my main army on my turtle, so as long as I have resources, I can instant heal. And I make sure to go out with truckloads of resources open so that I am prepared, plus I farm hives of farms for additional resources.

      If 2 attacks land 1 second apart, then it is likely that I will not have time to heal between attacks, so I will take some losses.

      Turtles with T2-3 and sufficient bed space can usually take 2-3 hits before needing to shield or heal. But T1 or T2-3, you need sufficient hospital capacity, and only you can decide how many hospital beds you have.

      I will not be doing ‘real world tests’. I will not be setting up a test simulating multiple 2B players hitting a turtle within 3 seconds. That is waaaaay beyond the scope of this series, and something that you are going to have to figure out on your own. Sorry, but I have spent enough RSS / troops bringing you the hits in this series.

      There is no 1 answer for all turtles to your question of: “So……How many troops and traps does it take, and what mix?” If you really want specific guidance for your account on how to get set up for multiple simultaneous cored-up solo hits, I suggest you get a consultation. http://gameofwar.exchange/product/killer-turtle-chew-up-375k-t4-without-breaking-a-sweat/

    • I really have to disagree with your comments Thor. In my experience (over 10 kvk ke as a trap with 1 win and many top 3 finish) being a good trap is about being ready, alert and accepting that the very nature of our strategy is risky and can mean being zeroed. As a rule, i dont attract hits without being sure that im prepared to take the hit from that players and it’s about being observant of their kills (this tells about experience ), gear and power. When being aggressive and attacking hives its about placement to give you self time to react and having cores and relics equipped to boost your defence. Most importantly you should retain all you battle reports and come to your own conclusions about what boosts and troop numbers you need. Dont rely solely on the advice and work of others. Just my oppinion tho

  21. Suspected as much but your tests have confirmed it. Thanks for taking the time and effort for these detailed guides, I always find them an interesting read. I always refer anyone wanting to make a trap to them!

  22. So if my turtle account has 10 million troops (T1 – 9m, T3-1M) I should focus gear and gems on Defense and attack (Inf, Cav, Range)? I’ve noticed with my low power, most people will port in and queue max and send. I’m thinking about stacking more Range than anything to provide the best boosts to kill incoming infantry troops. So I should be putting Defense, Range Attack, and else for gems?

    Thanks a lot for all the information you have provided! I has helped more than you can imagine!

  23. $$I Rule…… Eretria for life….All hail dracula

  24. This is going against the prevailing wisdom that health is more important than defense. Has anybody done a more detailed test?

    • Profile photo of silverhair

      How would you propose doing a more detailed test? Genuinely curious, because I would have thought that applying a 75% boost for troop health, troop defense, troop attack, and trap attack on a standard turtle was reasonably detailed. As is doing 4 lots of 8 sequentially larger armies for a total of 32 encampment based tests.

      If it has been done, it has not been reported publicly. If you can come up with a proposed test schedule that adds incremental value on top of the above tests, I am happy to look at doing it. Please propose what you think will give you the answers you seem to be lacking.

      • Am I there yet? I finally think I have enough troops to try out my turtle. I have 400k t 3 300k t1 60k war bricks and 30k t 3 but For gear its not really that good just basic level 40 maybe 45 hero gear. All of them have good gems . Research wise I have my combat tree for attack and defense at 9 and troop health and defense at 9. Can I take a solo hit from someone and either shield or heal my guys?

      • Profile photo of silverhair

        It really depends upon your hospital capacity, your overall combat boosts and the boosts of the attacker. If you are taking a hit from a 1B player in single troop type attack gear, you will have some difficulty and likely lose troops and traps. If you are hit by a 100M T4 player with suboptimal hero gear, then you could be perfectly fine. It really depends upon your boosts, their troop types and their hero gear.

      • Silverhair- Your tests are wonderfully detailed and exceptional. A poor choice of words on my part. My curiosity is in the continued trajectory of defense and attack boosts on armies above 8000 t1. Does defense surpass attack boost effectiveness at some point? I hope I’m understanding your charts correctly. Thanks for the interesting and informative articles

  25. Fantastic guide. Longtime reader, first time commenter:

    1) Based on the findings here, I can’t help but now wish I could modify the weighting in the “Best Gear” tool. Perhaps in an advanced options tab? T3 traps are clearly not going to value the same gear as a T1 trap.

    2) Why do you guess that defense comes into its own at high levels of troops, while attack and health seem constant?

    3) I suspect that trap attack boost would trend in the opposite direction, ie downward with more troops. Do you agree?

    Thanks for your time.

    • Profile photo of silverhair

      1) That is always the problem with additional detail, it makes it harder for a single weighting system to account for all situations and strongholds. For a long time people have adjusted weightings in excel spreadsheets to customise to their particular situation and stronghold layout. Trying to build that degree of customisation into a hero gear tool may prove too tricky. But you are right, there are always tradeoffs with a one-size fits all weighting.

      2) I don’t know why it does it, but it definitely does it on defense when taking a hit. My thoughts are that defense is a use case specific boost, i.e. a much more focused and single purpose boost than is troop health. Just as cavalry attack is more specific than troop attack, and hence can be more useful in specific situations, troop defense is more specific than troop health, and hence can be more useful in the specific use case of taking a hit (or a rally). But overall troop health is more general, and ON AVERAGE, more useful than troop defense, because troop health has greater value on attack.

      3) Yes, I agree. I will discuss this in part 12.

  26. I am also curious about health vs defense. I have placed value on all health and attack boosts when crafting gear and placing gems. For gems I always use 1 health gem 1 rose gem and have either used other attack/health based special gems or a specific troop attack gem as my 3rd one

  27. I’m at SH18 with 325,000 hospital beds and 304,000 T3 (assorted group) with 50k T1’s & 40k T2’s. My question is when setup to trap people do I need to rally my hero? And if i rally him do my troops lose the bonuses from his gear? If not how many hits can I take before he could be captured. My hero is level 50 also.

    • No, do not fake rally your hero. Yes you lose all the combat benefits of your hero when you fake rally them out of your stronghold. Your army loses between 60-90% of its effectiveness without your hero.

  28. great info but what about this, your a two billion player getting rallied, you can expect full core attack geared to all one troop. What’s the best way to defend, add three to four defensive cores to your standard attack gear? use 75% defense or attack boost? Every KvK you see some big rally’s go down so what’s the best way to counter them?

    • Profile photo of silverhair

      The best way to defend against a fully-cored single troop type missile is to put on a shield. The second best way is to have a counter troop core set, high on troop defense, and consider dumping the lowest tier of troops that are targeted by their core set. Most 2B players have 40-70M troops, so troop defense is a very important boost against 2.375M troops. You can test this with 1000:1 scaled encampment tests.

  29. Excellent article! I have a question…

    Attackers are usually much more powerful than the one you used in your test. If you had say the 8M T1 model, but the attacker was twice as powerful overall as the one you used in your model, would you value the boosts the same as you would for 4M T1 army?

    If not, how would you scale the value of the boosts if you were expecting an attacker that is way stronger than the one in your tests?


    • Check multiple reports of one guy on Instagram (gamerofwar). He has good trap setup, much similar than what described here 5m t1, 3m t3 and very decent gears(you can check the gears too), eat solos alive.
      How to run a trap is different matter tho. Saw many traps zeroed. Trap is only good as their owner’s skills

    • Profile photo of silverhair

      No, I wouldn’t value the boosts differently depending upon attacker hero strength. The tests here were also done with single troop type attack sets and the relative value of troop health / defense and troop attack remained similar in relative terms compared to each other.
      The only way I would adjust is estimating the strength of their attacker gear vs what I know my combination of troops, gear and hospitals can take. IF they are cored up with a stacked single troop attack set, then no, I do not switch gear and gems to fine tune combat boosts, I shield. I know they will exceed my hospital capacity, so I go for 100% safety.

  30. I am surprised at the effectiveness of troop defense vs troop health you are showing in this article based on other articles on this site that basically showed health > defense in most situations.

    • If you have a shit loads of troops, defense is better. Health is much more important when attacking out. Check another article on this side about defense vs health. The assumptions there still quite correct.
      My own assumption for battle mechanic is like: troop loss = total damage – defense* number of troops/ troops health * number of troops. Not quite correct formula, but something along that line

      • Sorry, but your formula can’t be right, because it says that the lower your health the better.


  32. So basically def gets more important than health the more troops you have, but when I look at the combat boost guide in particular “taking a hit from a rally 5m vs 2.375m” health is better than def. How come that the results are different ?

    Btw, thank you so much for taking your time and money to help everyone to understand the game better !

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