Lakeville is an iconic map in World of Tanks since it is balanced and relatively the same layout for both sides/teams. The minute differences for both sides however make the map favor certain teams in small areas and thus for competitive play there minute differences will alter how you approach Lakeville. For the northern team you gain the initial advantage in securing the central pathway since the route to get into the “cubby hole” is shorter and allows tanks positioned further back to fire upon any enemies attempting to advance north. The negative aspect of the northern team is that your artillery cover is less effective in the town since your main cover is slanted towards the enemies base(where there is a good chance artillery will be) in the D line or behind church. For the valley the northern team has an easier time advancing to the focal hill dividing both teams but on the flip side it is slightly harder to defend against an advancing attack if they make it past that hill.
For the southern team your main drawback is having a difficult time securing the central pathway initially unless the team sends slower tanks there and/or completely ignores it. The upside is that you have more cover from artillery in the G line and behind the church. It is also easier for tanks positioned near the base to fire into the town(mainly to hit tanks behind the church) compared to the northern team that has limited options unless they move out of the safety of the base. The valley provides an easier time to defend than the northern team since the J2 over watch creates an excellent choke point/spotting location. The slope of the central hill in the valley makes cresting it slightly harder and initial pushes over it can be difficult if you encounter decent defenses.
Side 1(Northern) Strategies
City Oriented Defense + Delayed 3 Prong Attack
This strategy is set up to provide an initial thud for enemies moving over to the city and then a set up static defense. This works well against clans who rush over to the city and do not take the appropriate measures to remain hidden while doing so. It also is very flexible since you can defend or attack via the city while having the central group capable of returning to base.
Initially you will have Squad E and E/F head to the middle road. The medium in E4 should be very mobile with good view range(M48’s do not make it here 100% of the time) to spot anything heading up the middle road and crossing over to the town. The three tanks behind it in C4 will not cross into D4 to much but will be able to destroy anything coming up the middle road and also hit anything moving through the J/K lines. The goal here is to 1) spot, 2) clear middle road, 3) hit tanks going to town safely. Make sure that Squad E(not the medium) moves north if spotted.
During this initial phase Squad G(another mobile medium) will be spotting the valley as safe as possible. Squad A/B, C, and D will enter the town via the safe road that bends around the corner of the map and also the edge of the 8/9 line. Heavies are best since they will need to be able to take a beating if they are stuck defending. The one TD in squad D is merely a indication for something with heavy armor since it can be hit from the middle road if it fails. Lastly, artillery will try to hit tanks moving to the town with their first shot and hopefully track them for Squad E at the very least.
After the first few minutes you should be aware of where the main force of the enemy team is. No matter where they are you are set up to counter it…but only if you act appropriately.
If there is a valley push you will want the town to attack(A/B/C/D squads) aggressively and clear down the the G line. The yellow route is for squad D and C while the red routes are for squad A/B. Avoid going through E0 since it is a death zone. In the meantime Squad E will flex back to base to help defend and the medium in the valley will fall back to A2. Artillery will move over to behind the town and the Squad E/F medium will move down to F4 to attempt to spot anything safely. The goal here is to have the base defended to slow them down and then once the town is cleared to the G/H line divide you will pull back all but 2 tanks in the town to sweep through and clear the valley.
Alternatively if a town push is in play you will hopefully have damaged a few tanks crossing over to it. Have your town squads set up in cover and wait for the enemy to push into you. Your artillery can hit D0 very well as well as Squad E meaning that you must prevent the enemy from advancing up the two other roads that provide more cover. If you are being smashed by artillery you can decide to push instead using the red and yellow lines(this means they have arty in J1 and several tanks protecting it). If you decide to push have Squad E/F push down to H4 to cut off any help and your artillery can move over to behind the town between shots.
Lastly if the enemy decides to camp for whatever reason(since they are attacking) in their base/valley you have an easier go at them. Simply take control of the middle road, advance through town(make sure to exit via H0 and not G8/G9 since youll be spotted), and move your artillery through town to hit them in J3. You will want to make sure to have good eyes on the valley while doing this to prevent them from fast capping. Once you secure the town you can pull back a few tanks to swing around through the valley so you are attacking from 3 sides and not 2.
This strategy works if you encounter an enemy that likes to set up in the town heavily but doesn’t exactly attack right away.
Initially Squad C/D/E will spot the middle road(with the fast medium) and take out anything moving up it quickly. Once that is done that medium will stay and spot safely and squad C/E will move back to defend. Artillery will set up in A1/A2 and aim at J2. If you load before your team reaches F2 then fire away to try and clear that ledge. Squad A will consist of mobile heavy tanks/medium tanks while squad B will be heavily armored tank destroyers such as T110E3’s. Squad A will group up quickly and push over while clearing to H2 at the start of the match. Squad B will follow behind and set up on the hill in F2.
This strategy is hinging on taking the valley quickly and figuring out if there is any base defense.
If the enemy has a heavy valley presence your only option is to plow forward and take them out. You should have the advantage since you will have the initial artillery shot followed by a plan tank rush over(have your tanks take one route to centralize your firepower). Your base defense will be enough that any tanks that reach your base will either be to late or if they are limited in number will die. Once the valley is dealt with you can either decide to pull back and attack elsewhere or continue on through.
If the valley is lightly guarded(5 or less tanks) it will be very easy to clear. Clear it out quickly but do not push around the J1/J2 corner into their base. Instead pull back your medium/heavy tanks into your base and leave the two tank destroyers in F2 to fire upon anything peaking around J2 looking for you. Take these heavy/mediums and attack through the town while squad C/D/E attack down the center road.
Side 2(Southern) Strategies
Three Prong City Attack
This strategy is very similar to the northern sides city oriented defense. However, it differs since you will be very aggressive.
Initially you will have Squad E be a hard hitting tank that will watch over the F2 hill. If anything is spotted take a shot and then back away. Squad D will be heavy tanks/tank destroyers that will either swing back to help defend base or move with the city attack. The mobile artillery will initially be aimed at the church area and later on move behind the town. Squad A and B will be mobile heavy tanks while squad C will be preferably all bat chats if not high DPM mediums. Make sure to move over to the town as far south as possible to prevent yourself from being spotted.
This strategy relies on the commander being flexible and reacting quickly. It also only works if every tank on the attack works as a group and does not hesitate while smashing into the enemy defense.
Once squad A/B and C are set up in the town they will begin their attack. Squad A/B will push first following their routes and will move likely encounter enemies behind the church or in the D line. Squad C will follow roughly 10 seconds later so that they arrive just after the enemy is focused on A/B. If enemies are encountered in the church area make sure to push all tanks across the field and behind artillery cover. If the enemy is set up behind the buildings in the D line instead follow the routes and crash into them….like a wrecking ball.
Squad D will push along the middle road(the breaks in the path indicate good spots for shooting into the city) if the valley isn’t being pushed upon. This cuts the enemy off from moving more tanks into the city since squad D can fire on them moving across the open field. Artillery will move in between shots when the attack starts to gain better firing angles.
If the valley is ever attacked of pushed upon you will want squad E to fall back to H4 and some of squad D to stay near base. If it is a large enough force then you will pull back all but 1-2 tanks once the city attack is over and swing them back through your base to crush any enemy tanks there.
Valley Oriented Attack
If the enemy expects you to push the city and/or has a heavy presence there based on previous battles then a valley attack could make sense. Generally through it is best for the southern side to attack via the middle/city and then worry about the valley.
Initially a spotter(fastest medium you have) will run the route drawn. This will allow you to spot the middle road along with a few tanks entering the city. Backing this tank up is squad C which will be in the bottom of G4 hitting anything spotted. Artillery will move into J1/K1 and pre-aim into the valley and squads A/B will push north. The valley tanks will want to be heavy tanks capable of dealing with the bad terrain with a few mediums sprinkled in to make it into A2.
Squad A will move up the 2 line and attack up to B3. Squad B will move up the western side closer to the 1 line and attempt to get into A2(very important) unless if there is a massive amount of defense located in B3. Artillery will support until all enemies are pushed behind the A3/B3 corner. Once this happens artillery will move north through the valley if your base isn’t under immediate threat and into C1->B1->A2 as the enemy is pushed further back. Squad C and the spotter will hang back in J3/J4 tight at the base to defend.
If the enemy has a strong presence in the valley(10+ tanks) then pushing squad C up the middle road makes perfect sense to flank them while your valley tanks hang back. If there is a heavy city push then this strategy relies on beating them to their base and capping them out. If you are in that scenario keep 3(or 4) tanks on their base and send the remaining ones into the city or down the middle road to spot ahead.