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Diagram of a Skilled Game on Cataract

By on August 13, 2009 6:52:21 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

"Skilled" assumes that mistakes are minimal on both sides - no one is being pulled into an obvious gank, everyone has an escape route, and teams coordinate effectively to protect and support each other while advancing their strategies.

In all cases flexibility is the most important aspect of play.  Pursuing your strategy at the expense of actual events will get you crushed if your opponents know what they are doing. 

That said, I see people throwing themselves madly into battle to protect the Brilliance Flag - you shouldn't sacrifice your DG for something of little importance.  If all of the below seems like common sense, congratulations, you know your Cataract strategy and I'm not talking to you   If any of it seems wrong let me know, always happy to learn something new...

Offensive Priorities (map):
1.  Fortitude Flag (lockdown*)
2.  Center Flag (for WarRank and Experience buff)
3.  Outer Tower on Opponent Goldside
4.  Opponent Gold flag (lockdown)
5.  Outer Tower on Opponent Celerityside
6.  Opponent Goldside Towers
7.  Opponent Goldside Portal Flag (lockdown in conjunction with unit upgrades or to weaken opponent unit upgrades)
8.  Opponent Celerityside Towers
9.  Opponent Celerityside Portal Flag (lockdown per above)
10.  Enemy Citadel

*lockdown - you don't ever want to lose this flag for more than 45 seconds.  If being pushed off the flag then you should lock it.  If you lose it you want it back ASAP

Defensive Priorities (map):
1.  Fortitude Flag
2.  Goldside Outer Tower
3.  Gold Flag
4.  Celerityside Outer Tower
5.  Back Celerity Flag
6.  Goldside Towers
7.  Goldside Portal Flag
8.  Celerity Side Portal Flag
9.  Allied Citadel

Citadel Upgrade Priorities:
1.  Mint 1
2.  Tower Regen 1
3.  Priests
4.  Exp 1 (optional - control center if you go this route)
5.  Angels thru Catas/Giants
6.  Unit Armor and Damage

*Please DON'T buy Death timer upgrades or currency upgrades past level 1.  Building upgrades past level 1 are extremely situational - unless you know why you are buying them don't*

Demigods - All DGs are viable on Cataract in 3v3, though some burn out early.  Common anchors as of 8/13/09 are Sedna/UB and Oak/Erebus.  In most cases you want at least one General and one Assassin, after that it's playstyles, team dynamic, and opponent counters. 

No verdict yet on whether Carry DGs should get the solo lane for greater xp.  I expect it's extremely situational. 

Flavor -

Fortitude Flag is the prime Dark offensive lane and Light defensive lane, because it leads to the Light gold flag and has a gamechanging 15% hp buff.  Dark will always have two DGs in this lane, with the faster or less solid one swinging mid as necessary.  Dark wants to control Fortitude, knock over the solo tower, cap and lockdown the Light gold flag, knock over the gold towers, and *eventually* take the portal flag on this side. 

(It's important if Dark has momentum not to cap the portal too early - it forces Light to counter, which means they will roll up the lane with all three DGs if necessary.  Much better to keep the gold flag and stay inlane for the xp)

Light might need two DGs in the Forti lane to counter Dark, but if at all possible should push the Brilliance Lane hard and early to gain access to the Dark Gold Flag.  Once the Dark gold flag is locked down or at least accessible, one DG should relieve the Fortitude defender and together they should concentrate on defending and pushing the Forti lane for the Dark Celerity Flag.  As much as anything this is defense-by-offense - Light can't afford to let Dark control this lane.  Whenever it can Light will focus on razing all Dark structures in or close to the lane to prevent Dark port access.

*Please note - It is possible for Light to mirror Dark and pressure the Brilliance portal instead if they are willing to operate at a 15% health deficit.  Midgame that can be a 700-900 hp difference, but it isn't insurmountable. 

Midgame Center - if the lane fights have been settled and everyone has a port scroll for defensive maneuvers your team can pull all spawning enemy reinforcements to the center flag for xp and to allow your units a shot at the towers mid.  Taking down these towers allows your reinforcement streams to converge, greatly magnifying their effect.  At this point you should be looking for Catas with damage upgrades or Giants.

Lategame - create pressure at the enemy's front door either through grunt upgrades or DG influence or both to the point where the enemy must commit to the center.  If they are any good they will port to threatened portal flags, so coordinate movements so that their defense is either too late (run two DGs to the flag, cap and lock before they can port in), misplaced (feint for one portal while your ally locks the other), or costs too much (defending the portal means the center is weaker and gets pushed hard). 

Once you have locked down an enemy portal and all allied portals and have catas it is very difficult for your opponents to win.   GG everybody!  Please don't let me catch you squabbling over the Brilliance Flag anymore

Some of my strategy posts:
Oak Build
Item Feeding
Tips 5/11/09 (some outdated)
Kiting, Exposure, and Dancing

Thanks for reading

+118 Karma | 13 Replies
August 13, 2009 8:00:18 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Holy hell, this is a new type of guide... AND I LIKE IT! great job on it. For all the new players out there, this can help push them to being more flag aware, as well as being more intune with the game, great job!


+1 to you, sir.

August 14, 2009 12:14:47 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Gets my stamp of approval ^^

It is important for players to learn that fortitude flag is extremely important, especially those I see wasting gold on locking down the middle flag. 

August 14, 2009 2:03:13 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

This is an excellant guide for newer players.

August 14, 2009 8:28:52 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Excellent focus. I tend to work both sides evenly though as a clearway down one side can be defended with a strong offense but clearing out both sides leaves room for an assassin to cap portals and either side flag while waiting for targets to assassinate.

Anyone unsure on how an assassination goes, it is easiest done while the enemy is exposed which is most often while they are trying to strip down your defences.

If you have a base destroyer that can get in and clear out towers on both sides without being assassinated and an assassin that can secure the kill when an enemy makes a move on your base you have a VICTORY in the bag.

August 14, 2009 9:20:07 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Quoting Bamji,

Anyone unsure on how an assassination goes, it is easiest done while the enemy is exposed which is most often while they are trying to strip down your defences.

Which reminds me:  After you have destroyed your opponent's outer tower in a lane be *extremely* careful when moving around the corner and farming at the inner parallel lane, especially solo.  Your opponents can come from the portal side and the citadel side, and if your vision is limited they can cut you off completely for a fast, minimally dangerous (for them) gank.  I played a game the other day with a Rook who kept getting into this inner elbow without support - even though he was otherwise decent he couldn't see the over-extension and he died a bunch..



August 14, 2009 10:52:25 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

   Not sure if this would apply to your guide kestrel, but I have found the following to have a devastating effect on cataract...  You need a demigod that can hold a lane 1v1 without blood of the fallen; namely sedna and queen imo.  Get amulet of teleportation and TP everytime an unattended flag you own is being captured.  Do this diligently all game and the war scores really start to become uneven..



August 14, 2009 11:36:18 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Very good overall strategic guide for Cataract.  Well done Ke5strel.

I've long been prioritizing the Fortitude flag on Cataract, followed by pushing the enemy gold flag.  I play the Rook most of the time with my team and I'm starting to get quite good at either holding or keeping constant harrassment on the enemy in the fortitude lane if I'm pushed out when it's 2v1 against me.  A good team will keep me away from the flag with continued 2v1 in that lane, in which case I know we're in for a decent or tough match.  I am amazed at how often I still see mess develop at the XP flag at the start of the game, and it's still not that uncommon to see a team rush and lock that central flag 30 seconds into the game.


August 14, 2009 12:44:56 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Awesome! I am really enjoying all of your guides Ke5strel. Please keep up the goodwork, these help alot of people, myself included!

August 14, 2009 9:34:25 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

very nice work.


a personal favorite strategy of mine for this map is to heavily upgrade Tower Damage, often ill buy 3 upgrades in it if sufficient gold is available but always at least 1. the reason for this is because the side lanes can be controlled 2v1 if the solo defender has a strong enough tower to retreat to. 


the way this works is strictly through levelling and experience gapping. the 2 attackers will split creep experience between them whereas the solo defender gets to keep it all for himself. its crucially important to hold the middle exp flag while doing this so your team should emphasize that. what will usually result is that you'll have a level 8 solo defender vs. 2 level 5 attackers. thats enough of a level gap where the 2v1 is actually winnable by the 1. 


the Tower Damage upgrades are crucial to this strategy because you NEED to be able to effectively hide at the tower in order to collect your exp. the tower has to hit HARD so that it wipes out incoming creeps very fast (particularly important against generals with minions or against creep waves with priests) and also so you can kill an attacker who comes after you while you're at the tower. 



August 15, 2009 8:39:29 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

also if something ive noticed about the fortitude flag is that if your team loses the flag u lose 15% of ur existing health. this can make a huge diff because its the equivalent of dropping 700-900 dps nuke on all of the other teams dg's

August 15, 2009 9:23:22 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

also if something ive noticed about the fortitude flag is that if your team loses the flag u lose 15% of ur existing health. this can make a huge diff because its the equivalent of dropping 700-900 dps nuke on all of the other teams dg's

I hate it when it happens to me

August 16, 2009 12:53:41 AM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

Actually you lose 15% of the total HP that you'd have without the flag -- which could be more than 15% of your remaining health.

For example if you have 4000 HP, take Fortitude flag you have 600 extra, so 4600.  Then let's say you have a brutal battle and are down to 1000 HP.  You run, enemy takes the flag.  Even though you only have 1000 HP left, you still will lose the full 600, and be left with 400.

August 16, 2009 7:31:34 PM from Demigod Forums Demigod Forums

So what you are saying is that there is no place to creativity and special moves or you will lose ?

I dont know, I dont play "Skilled" game yet so I cant deny your opinion, I will just say it is a negetive point to the map (or the game itself) if this is true.

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