1. It’s all about the stars
Your clan wins based on the number of stars your clan won at the end of the battle. How does that work? Simple. The one single best attack on a single base will count. What do I mean? If I attack base 1 and get 1 star and you attack base one and get 3 stars, your attack and only your attack will count as it was the single best attack. Therefore, our clan will get credited with 3 stars. We get no credit for my 1 star attack. The same is true for base 2, etc. If you are good at math you will see that only half of your clan’s attacks will count (we will talk more about that later regarding strategy).
Stars work the same as regular attacks:
- You’ll get one star for knocking out a Town Hall
- one star for destroying 50% of a base, and
- One star for wiping it out completely (100% damage).
2. Find the right target
The first thing, and the most common mistake made, is one must choose the best target. DON’T BE COCKY. Those who regularly get only 1,2,3 stars total in every war, unless you are one of the lowest ranked in every war are likely making one critical mistake–you are attacking people that you cannot beat. When searching for a target if you don’t think you can get two or three stars then it’s probably best to move on to someone else. The way I look at it is as follows regarding any single attack: 3 stars helps your clan, 2 stars is neutral, and anything less HURTS your clan. You won’t get any bonus loot at all if you fail to get a single star, so there is no point in getting cocky and attacking an opponent that is out of your league. At the same time, it’s important not to attack an enemy that is too far below your level. Don’t waste your attacks on an opponent that a lower level player could have defeated. For example a TH 7 should almost never attack a TH5 unless there are no other TH7 or TH6, or, if one is not a strong player, they think that they cannot wipe out the TH6.
In general, seriously evaluate your recommended target. These recommendations will not pick a base that has at least 1 star taken. These recommendations do not take into account base layout either. Often, I see players have a recommended target at one level, and they attack 10 higher and, what do you know, they get zero stars, or if they are lucky, one star. Often I see a #4 attacking a #4, getting 1 or zero stars, when their recommended target was #7. Again, the primary goal is to get the highest target that you can 3 star (if one is available that you can). When the war is essentially won, you can attack for loot (see below).
3. Scout enemy bases and watch replays
If you’ve read this far, then it should be clear by now that key to success in Clan Wars is careful preparation. Once Preparation Day has ended, you’ll have a further 24 hours to perform your attacks. This is plenty of time to carefully choose an opponent using the ‘scout’ feature. Unlike in regular Clash of Clans battles where you are only given 30 seconds to plan your attack, here you can scout for as long as you like. Use this to your advantage to come up with the best possible plan of attack. I want to see where the air defenses are, because if I am using air troops (i.e.healer), I want to take that our first. I mentally walk myself through the steps of my attack. Scan the entire base! Don’t miss outlying buildings–often people will put a builders hut in a corner or two or three. I usually drop a barb next to each one as there is nothing more embarrassing as wiping out the entire base, except for the builders hut left in the corner costing you and your clan one star. Take note of open spaces, especially within walls, as bombs or traps can be there. I like to send a barb or two through first, when possible, to avoid losing good troops.
My scout checklist:
- How strong are the defenses (level) and where are they located?
- How can I destroy their defenses? What troops do I need?
- If I am using flying troops, where are the air defenses and how upgraded are they?
- Where is the TH and how do I plan on destroying it (as that is always my goal).
- Where are the open spaces, especially within walls, as it could be a bomb, trap, or Tesla tower.
- Plan how I will draw out the enemies clan castle troops (see below for more on this).
- Are there troops in the clan castle (if you click info it will tell you how many, but not what troops).
If you choose an opponent who has already been attacked by another member of your clan, make sure to watch the replay first. You may pick up valuable information including what castle troops to expect, as well as the location of traps. I often watch replays several times. Why? What am I looking for?
- What troops are in their clan castle.
- Where are the bombs and traps located.
- Why did the last attack fail? Wrong troops? Wrong place? Traps? Failed to draw out clan castle troops?
4. Make sure you are 100% battle ready
It may sound like an extremely basic tip, I cannot tell you how often people attack and they are not 100% ready. Double check to make sure that your heroes are awake, your camps are completely full of troops and the troops that you need, your spells are all finished, and your village clan castle (not your war clan castle) is full of the troops that you want to take with you to battle. Too often people attack in war once and forget to request more troops to fill their village clan castle to take into war. There is nothing more embarrassing than going into war and you didn’t request to fill your clan castle with troops–which are your best offensive unit. Let me repeat that–your clan castle troops are your BEST offensive unit. Why? Because your clan-mates who are TH levels above you can put MUCH stronger troops in than you have available. Remember, your war clan castle is for defense only and those troops are resuscitated (are re-used) if you are attacked again–no need/nor can you make changes to your war clan castle once war has begun. No matter how much experience you have, it can be all too easy to get a little carried away and jump straight into a fight, but you only get two chances to attack during each war so make sure that they count. Not to mention it will be extremely embarrassing to explain to your clan that you got zero stars because you went into battle completely unprepared.
1. My camp is full of troops.
2. My camp has the troops I want.
3. My spell factory is full.
4. My spell factory has the spells that I want.
5. My VILLAGE clan castle is full of troops for battle (not to be confused with your war clan castle which defend only).
6. My VILLAGE clan castle has good troops and one’s that I want to take to battle.
5. Only high ranking members should donate
For both the war clan castle (Defense) and when requesting troops for your village clan castle (Attacking), you’ll need all the help you can get, meaning only the very best troops will do. It’s common sense that your fellow clan members will stand a much better chance with high level wizards or dragons as opposed to say, level 1 barbarians. This may leave some lower level players feeling excluded, but by donating they are potentially doing more harm than good. If possible, come to an arrangement with your clan that only the top members will donate during wartime battles, while everyone else can still donate as usual during regular play.
6. When to attack
There appears to be much controversy on this topic and I recommend deferring to your leaders as there are many different strategies. From a statistical standpoint, the best method of attacking would be as follows:
The lowest ranking war member attack first (the other clans 2 lowest ranked members). If he gets 2 or 3 stars on those attacks, then the second lowest ranked player attacks the 2 above, and so forth. If there is a one star attack, the next attacker can attack that. In a circumstance when one believes that they cannot get even one star on an attack, they should attack someone that the clan has gotten only one or two stars, if they believe that they can do better. If there is no one that they can get 2 or 3 stars from, then and only then, they can (if ok with clan leaders) hold their attack until end for loot purposes if clan winning)
Now, in real life, this is nearly impossible, especially in large clans as we are all not sitting around waiting for each other to attack, but it is possible. But, one can break it up so that lowest 1/2 attack within first 12 hours and top 1/2 within final 12 hours.
Sir Robert’s mini-war within a war strategy:
A hybrid that I have created is to assign groups. I call this the “mini-war” strategy–or a mini-war within a war. This works well for larger clans, but works for smaller clans as well. For example, I will split our clan of 20 and the other clan of 20 into three groups. Top, mid, and lower. Our lower group of 4 will attack their group of 4. That group attacks first! That means that they, as a group, have 8 attacks to wipe our 4 bases. Our mid group of 8 will attack their mid group of 6. That is right, it is often not even, but that is OK. So our group has 16 attacks to wipe out 6 bases. If they succeed, then they first wipe out any bases in the lower group that has not been wiped out first and then they can help out by trying to wipe out bases in the group above. Then our top group of 8 attacks their top group of 10. If a base has not been starred at all in the mid group, they start there and then move up to their group. Remember, it is all about the stars, not pride. Often, in larger clans, someone ranked 10 will be attacking 19 & 20. VERY often. The ultimate goal is to 3 star ALL bases and, realistically, only the top half of your clan has to attack to do that (as everyone gets 2 attacks each). Most clans lose because of a poor attack strategy where the top half attacks very early, attacks enemies higher than they need to, and as a result this group gets less stars then they could have.
How to break up into groups for mini-war:
I assess the other clan based on TH levels, upgrades, and layout. So often, I will have our TH3, 4, & even 5 in the low group, and their TH3 & 4 in their low group. What? That means our TH5 will attack their TH4. Yes! We need to 3 star and I don’t want them “trying” to hit targets that the group can’t wipe out (or come close to). If they successfully wipe out their group, they can always move up to help out the group above, but their primary goal is to wipe out their assigned group–3 stars for each enemy. The second group might be our TH6 against their TH5 and maybe 1 or 2 TH6.
Using the mini-war strategy, everyone has an opportunity to contribute and has a great chance of success.
When to attack :
Here is an example attack strategy.
- Lowest group uses all attacks first (within first 3-4 hours of war)
- Mid group uses first attack within first 3-4 hours, and second before final 12 hours of war
- Top group final uses first attack after 12 hours of war and second later (highest ranking should use in final hours).
7. Exploit your opponent’s weaknesses
Once you have scouted out a suitable opponent, it’s a great idea to create a custom army specifically designed to exploit their strengths and weaknesses. If your enemy has high level walls for example, you might want to bring along a few extra wall breakers. Or if your opponent has particularly weak air defense then it would be a good time to stock up on flying troops. If they have little defenses outside the walls, bring archers in to shoot over the walls. Also remember to create a balanced army with a good range of skills that compliment each other. It may be tempting to stock up on the strongest troops, but don’t forget to bring a few weaker troops along too for springing traps or creating decoys.
8. Draw out your enemies castle troops-FIRST
Assuming your opponent hasn’t also read this article, there’s a good chance that their castle won’t be in a central position. Scout the base and click on the clan castle. You will see the radius of attack for the clan castle. Plan where to drop a few weaker troops at the start of the battle to clear out the castle. This will allow you to see what you are up against and react accordingly. It will also provide an opportunity to engage the defending troops on the edge of town, away from defenses and distractions. How? They will kill your one or two troops, then drop a troop FAR away and their clan troops will go to attack. As they clear away from the base, you can then attack them. Your opponent will likely have particularly strong castle troops during Clan Wars. Therefore it’s vital to eliminate them as soon as possible, just as it is crucial to protect your own castle for the same reason. A good strategy against castle troops can be to lead with ‘tanking’ troops like giants, followed up by some ranged troops to rain fiery death on the defenders. I most often use archers only or a few barbs and archers. Your choice. I like archers as they shoot from a distance. Some like to use a spell to destroy them.
9. Don’t be greedy, unless victory is certain
Your number one goal should be to help your clan win the war by getting as many stars as possible. But if your clan is clearly about to win and don’t need any more stars, you might as well attack the highest level opponent that you think you can ‘one-star’ to get the highest possible loot bonus. If the rival clan’s top player has left their Town Hall out in the open–however unlikely that may be–capitalize on this oversight to get a huge bonus. You can even do this if a member of your clan has already earned three stars against them, but just make sure you only do this once victory is absolutely certain. Your fellow clan members would be rightly annoyed if the war was lost as a result of your personal greed. This happens all too often that as soon as the war starts, a #4 player attacks the other clan’s #1. This is very frustrating. Furthermore, it is just as frustrating when a #4 attacks a #4 at the start of war and gets zero or one star.
1. Optimize your base layout for war
Winning in Clan Wars is all about which side finishes with the most stars, so your primary focus should be to defend your Town Hall at all costs. Even if an enemy wipes out every building BUT your Town Hall they will only get one out of three possible stars, meaning a strong defense is crucial. This is so important, I will repeat that—YOU MUST DEFEND YOUR TOWN HALL AT ALL COSTS!!! The above example is good in that the TH is in the center of a walled square, the walls are far enough away that archers cannot shoot over the walls, and there is good protection within the walls with the sole purpose of defending the TH. Use your BEST defenses to defend your TH (mortars, wizard towers, crossbow, Tesla,…). Your second priority should be to protect your clan castle. Leaving it unprotected will allow attackers to draw out your castle troops (see tip #7) to destroy them before commencing with the full attack. I recommend placing your castle near the middle of the base, your castle troops can come out later in the battle to defend your Town Hall against a weakened enemy. At the end of Preparation Day, your town layout is ‘locked-in’ for the duration of the war. Feel free to move your Town Hall and castle into the middle of the base at the last minute, and then go straight back to a farming layout once the war has begun. Just make sure you don’t forget to change your base before Preparation Day ends to avoid misery. See the post about war base layouts for more information. Here are just a few select examples.
The base above is pretty good, BUT… I would put the clan castle next to the TH, near the middle. There is no need to protect Gold and Elixir storage in war base.
The base above is a pretty good war base, but I would move the air defense closer in to protect it better.
Great War Base above except clan castle (broken in the above example) should be close to the TH.
Solid base! mortars and wizard TH protecting TH. Air defense central and protected. I would move clan castle closer to center (where gold storage is next to it) for war, and use this base as is for village.
2. Only high ranking members should donate
On preparation day, only the very best troops should be put into the clan castle–meaning your highest THs should be filling ALL of the war castles.