it depends there is really no "best strategy " everyone has playstyles
You need both: build offensive units while building level 1 industry. Then attack to gather more resources and use those to upgrade your industry to level 2 and to produce more units. Economy and warfare go hand in hand. That's why the late Roman Empire had an economical crisis, they stopped expanding and lost their income of spoils of war to boost their economy.BMfox
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Dinosaurs died because they didn't evolve, luckily COW does. Let's embrace it instead of complaining about it.
"It's only cold when you need petrol to get a tank out of the ice to depart": my bootcamp training sergeant.
Work on economy and on military offensively for me!Фарис Синановић, Суна
If the game you are in is the 1939 historical world war scenario where you and other players controlling major powers along with most of the moderates and even some minor ones, strongly imitate the historic personality of your country's leader or a famous general at the front, you will be in great danger of laughing to death if you know your history. Way back in the day a special group of us played complex war games needing a ping pong table and a couple of small additions that barely fit a map of Europe on. Tens of thousands of unit counters needed a minimum of a dozen players to play just one turn for each side when Germany finally attacked Russia. The average turn took eight hours, but the whole time the roll playing went on with ever increasing hilarity as the months went by. Minor costume pieces began early, but near the end of the game, full ones were getting close. Being only 15 years old and the newest member of the war games club in high school, I did not get a country, but was picked by the German leader to be one of his minor generals. The 18 year olds on my side bought only German beer when we played and that made acting out our rolls even better. All we have left now are words to roll play. It will never be as good as done face to face, but it can still be fun if the right people get together and do it.
I work on offensive units. But I don't invest all that much in them, you just need to choose the unit that's the most effective for day 1-3. If you gain more territory it gives you an advantage; even if the unit is slightly ineffective by then, you have the economy lead already (conquering gives resources which you can invest).
Basically, I pick a unit that doesn't cost the same as the industry. For that reason, I never focus on tanks early, except possibly as Comintern who need the extra cities more than the economy.
You can open with aircraft, rare materials are cheap at the market and you can sell the food to get the money."In CoW, don't stamp on things before looking. Rakes are everywhere!"
"Don't underestimate noobs; if they don't know what they're doing, how can you?"
Claudio von Panjim, Sergeant major of CoW
Read these threads:
Die deutsche Welt - Germany 1939 Blitzkrieg
Die deutsche Welt Part 2, The United States of South America