What is a trap account?
A Guide to Trap Accounts in Mobile Strike – Part 1
Before we delve into a guide about the actual set-up of a trap account, we should first go over the actual strategy and premise of them.
- What makes a Mobile Strike account a “trap”?
- What characteristics do these accounts have in common with each other, if any?
- How would you be able to spot an account like this?
The simple answer to this question is power; the game does not have many ways of measuring a player’s PvP strength and to the common layperson, power correlates to PvP strength. This is not true, as one will realise later on, but it is definitely the quickest way to have a guess.
In the early game, using power as a judge works, since people have a balanced base of power composition made up of troops, buildings, research etc. However, as the game progresses, this method becomes more and more flawed- trying to determine a potential opponent’s battle strength by utilising their overall power figure becomes less accurate because the distribution of power changes.
Wall traps will end up representing a tiny fraction of their power figure, whereas in contrast research power and troop power will likely be the two greatest. The trap account utilises this information asymmetry to its advantage- only the trap knows how its power is composed, and the vast majority of that power is likely to be composed of combat-based elements.
The prime example is ‘zeroed’ accounts- where there are no troops or traps inside, meaning its overall power figure excludes these. However, it does not mean they will have low power figures. If they had anti-scout activated, it would be impossible to know this, unless a deployment was sent at the base, and won.
There are some tricks of distinguishing between a zeroed account and an active account with troops. From clicking the base however, the only thing that tells me it may be zeroed is the fact it has no alliance. Power and confirmed kills do not help much- zeroed bases can have high power, and many players who stay under shield have low kills. The only reason I was able truly to tell this account was zeroed was by scouting it- it did not have anti-scout active. Other stats in a players profile- troop K:DR, troops hospitalised etc. do not help either, as these are stats which may reflect the troops the player previously had! Commander gear is another clue, but again this is imperfect.
Any alternative ways of gauging a potential opponents power?
Looking at the HQ level of the person you will hit- T3 troops are unlocked at level 15 HQ, and T4 at level 21. For example, if they are not at HQ L21, they can’t have T4 troops- meaning the higher they are in power, the more likely it is that they have a lot of troop power. Note- most of the time a trap account will have anti-scout on, else you would figure out that they were one! Hence, if someone has anti-scout, consider why- are they unshielded intentionally, for instance during a SvS kill challenge, in order to lure people in? The answer is probably yes.
So why is power so important for a trap?
Imagine this scenario, a state vs state event, whereby you are looking for potential targets to hit, to gain points. The goal is to minimise your losses, and maximise your kills, and consequent points. Most of picking out targets is based on intuition; rational thinking of picking a target which appears easy to win against, and might have some resources to gain. Most people skip looking over other factors reflecting power, but rather just look at the “absolute” power their target has. The contributors of power to your overall figure are: Troop, trap, building, mission, research and commander; ergo the other PvP power indicator – gear, which can make a massive difference, is not taken into consideration. Thus, looking like an appealing target is extremely important for traps.
Analysing my own personal power makeup:
My power may be 83.8million, however, my PvP power is only composed of troop, trap, combat related research and commander (if they will be at my base). I stress the fact that not all research helps you in battle… for instance researching t4s requires you to complete level 10 in most of the economics tree. The t4 troops can be built after, effectively increasing combat power, but the opportunity cost of going for t4s is the increase of non-combat power from that tree, like from construction 10. This is a very high opportunity cost, as it cannot be undone or deconstructed. Mission power will never help in increasing your PvP strength, so if possible do not claim any missions. Building power is essential to some extent, but one must prioritise which buildings they upgrade so they do not unnecessarily increase power. As you can see, my building power was 7million- a higher figure than perfect because I hyper farm iron from my base.
Commander power is truly unavoidable- at level 50 the commander provides 5.3m power, and at level 60 it gives a whopping 511m power; for a solo trap account, a compromise must be made as there is an opportunity cost of this commander power. Are the additional benefits of a level 60 commander worth that added power? It is expected that during all attacks on your base, your commander is present, else it becomes wasted power too! Furthermore, you must ensure your commander is skilled accordingly for combat, and geared, else it’s potential benefit is wasted.
What should you take away from this? The less wasted power your trap has, the better off you’ll be. For a given power amount, you’ll be able to have more troops if you have less wasted power.
How do I put the theory into practice?
I hope you enjoyed reading this guide as much as I did writing it.
Part two of this guide will be posted shortly explaining how you can actually set up a trap account in-game.
This means detailed information regarding organising your troops, traps, buildings, research and commander.
Stay tuned soldiers, and comment with any opinions or thoughts on this guide below!