The RZ (Riflemen and Zookas) strategy is a rather uncommon one in the higher levels, but somewhat popular in the low to middle levels. It is generally one of the overall least popular compositions, but it does have some usefulness integrated into it. Below, the RZ strategy will be covered in detail.
Obviously, Riflemen are the main troop in this composition. Their specialty does not lie in meatshielding.
Instead, they are good at swarming a base. Their small size of 1 space means they will always fill a landing craft no matter the level. Damage is somewhat low-moderate per unit, but their large numbers make up for this. Similarly, their health isn't outstanding, but it is compensated with the sheer amount of them.
Cost isn't too hefty, a maximum level Rifleman only costs 1,400 gold. Training time is very short, at just 1 minute. Speed is moderate, like most other troops. These statistics generally make them a somewhat versatile troop in the early levels. However, one key flaw makes them less useful in later levels.
The Rifleman's low health and large numbers means that they are extremely vulnerable to splash damage. Most of the defenses deal this, in fact, only 3 do not do this: both Cannon types and the Sniper Tower. This leaves 7 types of defenses that excel at getting rid of them. Generally, the amount of these defenses increases at the higher levels, so they aren't too bad in the low stages. Riflemen are capable at handling a base alone, but an increase in damage allows them to perform even better. This task belongs to the Zooka.
The Zooka's main role in this strategy is serving as the troops that deal the damage. Riflemen alone are capable of this, but Zookas have a better DPS. A level 20 Zooka deals 1,076 damage per shot. With a maximum of 12 per Landing Craft, the total damage dealt is 2,112 every 2 seconds or 1,056 per second. This means that they will make short work of most buildings very quickly.
However, the cost for a level 20 Zooka is 3,600 Gold. This is not terrible for one, but it costs 43,200 to load 12 onto one Craft. Training time isn't very hot either; it takes 4 minutes to train one. Therefore, it takes 48 minutes to fill a Craft. This isn't as time-consuming as other troops such as Tanks, but the total time can still take quite some time.
Like Riflemen, they are very vulnerable to splash damage. However, they also have lower health, enough for most defenses to kill them very quickly. Despite this, they can still hold out against the heavy defenses like Boom Cannons due to their low rate of fire. Flamethrowers can kill them quickly, but they outrange it. This does not ensure their complete safety, if even one steps too far into its range, it will kill it and maybe some others. Their overall properties make them great choices against many bases, especially with shields.
This strategy is one of the few that has several possibilites of organizing troops. A higher amount of Riflemen will allow for a stronger shield, while more Zookas gives a higher damage output. Generally, with an odd amount of Craft, Riflemen will take one extra craft. Even numbers have it equal, while some add Medics to counteract some damage. Common examples (without Medics) are seen below, but the organization is entirely up to personal playstyle.
|Number of Craft||Number of Craft with Riflemen||Number of Craft with Zookas||Number of Craft with Medics|
This a way to take care of certain defenses. The top one means that it is of higher priority.
These are by far the best defense that handles the RZ strategy. Their splash damage and 6 shots per volley means that they will quickly decimate large groups of Riflemen and Zookas. An extremely long range will make matters worse, as they will be able to pummel them for long periods of time. It is always best to destroy these with Barrages and Artillery before a battle. If this isn't possible, Shock Bombs and Medkits are the best bet to take these down. However, it is okay to ignore them if the Riflemen can survive one volley (i.e. high level troops and low level Rockets) and that Medics are able to out-heal the damage. Even then, Zookas do not enter the blind spot, leaving them open to attack. In general, these should always be taken down.
Shock Launchers should be treated like a Rocket Launcher. This is because both have similar range and splash damage. In exchange for damage, the Shock Launcher has the ability to stun troops. This may not seem like a problem, but the radius usually avoids Zookas. Since the Riflemen are stunned, the Zookas will move forward and merge with the Riflemen. This makes the next shot hit most Zookas, killing them. Low level ones aren't as problematic, but they should still be considered as a threat.
Flamethrowers have much shorter range than a Rocket Launcher, but still pose a threat to Riflemen. Its damage output is very high. It also has splash damage, improving the firepower even more. As a result, Riflemen will die quickly. Zookas are a different story; they outrange it, but can still enter its range. Medics can out-heal them, but in practical terms, only the low level ones. Medkits have a similar effect, but multiple should counter the damage of mid level Flamethrowers. Despite this, it is generally not a good idea to leave these untouched unless they are avoidable.
Mortars have high damage and splash radius, making them a great Riflemen clearer. Zookas are just as vulnerable to this. However, low level ones have an almost negligible effect. Even if it is high level, it can only attack one "chunk" of troops at a time. The slow rate of fire means that it can be swarmed somewhat easily. Groups, on the other hand, are more of a problem. Mortars should be taken out ASAP, but a Shock Bomb and Flare will actually make waste of it easily.
This defense also has splash damage, making it able to damage multiple troops at once. The damage per shot is average, and with a high rate of fire, can make a devastating volume of fire. However, it is not 100% accurate and Riflemen and Zookas attack it near the edge of its range, where it is most inaccurate. These can still be a problem, but can be out-healed by Medics easily. This defense should only be considered a threat when Medics and Medkits are not used. Otherwise, they are fairly simple to take down without too many problems.
Single Mines rarely pose a threat in an RZ attack. However, large groups make attacks very troublesome. Each has damage that can kill a Rifleman in one or two shots. Zookas can only really take one. The good news is that they are only used once, meaning that if the damage isn't lethal and is out-healed, it won't have much effect. Large clusters should be destroyed with a Barrage or avoided altogether. Boom Mines are no problem, due to their smaller radius. Shock Mines are only a threat if defenses are nearby.
Every other defense is not a threat whatsoever with this strategy. Boom Cannons and Cannons will be swarmed and destroyed quickly. Sniper Towers are debatable about their threat. They can kill Riflemen and Zookas quickly, but they are single shot and have a moderate rate of fire. They should be only be a problem if they are high level and behind the Headquarters.
A Good Attack
The RZ strategy is rather simple to use. Below is a guide on how to use it properly.
- Destroy any Rocket Launchers, then Shock Launchers. If both cannot be destroyed, prioritize the Rockets. If possible, destroy and Shock Blasters or Lazor Beams.
- Deploy the troops and let them destroy the front defenses. Be wary of any Mine clusters and avoid them if possible. Use spare GBE on Shock Bombs or destroy other threats. If necessary, use a Medkit or two.
- When using Flares, use Smoke Screens on any troop that is in the range of a defense to protect it.
- Get to the Headquarters, Power Core, or Outpost and destroy it.
Tips and Tricks
- It is best to not use this strategy if casualties cause anger. Each attack is more than likely to have loss of troops.
- Troop health statues are very useful with the RZ strategy. They will buff the health of troops, increasing survivability. Damage statues aren't as valuable, but will make buildings get destroyed even faster.
- Be very careful about Lazor Beams and Shock Blasters. Both kill Riflemen and Zookas quickly. In the Lazor Beam's case, try to avoid putting troops in a straight line.
Defending against RZ
- Place Rocket Launchers away from each other. Not doing so will result in them sharing blind spots and allowing many to get shocked at once. They should cover the beach and be behind other defenses. This is easy to accomplish due to their large range.
- Flamethrowers and Machine Guns at the beach will make it difficult for Riflemen to enter the base. To prevent flanking, place Mines on the sides, but not too close together.
- In general, Mortars should be near the back. They will be able to fire for a long time.
- Damage Amplifiers boosting these defenses are excellent ways to quickly counter Riflemen. Leave these protected well.
As with the other guides, feedback is greatly appreciated. This includes the pointing out of any kind of error. Comments should be on-topic and related to this guide. Sadly, this concludes the strategy guides for now, as a Heavy-Zooka one can be found here. I have not used any other strategy, meaning that if I were to do them, it would be somewhat complicated to write a guide. Therefore, as of now, there is no new guide.