Mountain Pass with it’s many flanks and different terrain elevations provides an interesting map to both attack and defend for clan wars. Taking a look at the map’s layout you will see four main routes to attack on and defend against. Unlike some other maps these routes are also connected in the center of the map in one way or another with the low lying marsh/bog which opens up the map from one side to the other. This unique feature of Mountain Pass makes it much easier to re-position a group of tanks from one side of the map to the other if need be.
Personally I think this favors playing aggressively at first to gain a strong footing in a key location to start the match and then reevaluating your options afterwards. The longer you wait to take a section of the conjoined central area the more chance of you being flanked or pinned into a corner increases. Granted, at the same time Mountain Pass also has very good cover against artillery and defending some locations can make pushing into a defensive group with high burst damage impossible at times.
For all strategies here I won’t give specific tank configurations to use but merely outline a general tactic to use. This is because tank balances, new tanks, and tank availability is always changing. This guide should be used a guideline and not something to follow to the nail since clan wars is all about reacting to situations and being flexible.
Before I post some tactics for each side I will go over my general thought process for either side. For side A(land owners / green side) it is easier for you to take the southern/central part of the map for a few reasons. First off, your tanks start slightly closer to the G4/H3 areas and this means you can have a few second advantage over the enemy team. Secondly, if you field SPGs it is harder(or impossible) for them to support your northern group aside from a few shots into D7/D8 due to the mountains and terrain differences. And lastly, you can position tanks in the edge of D2 and fire at spotted enemies moving across G5/H5/H6 without them being spotted while the other team cannot do so without their tanks being spotted. This alone allows you to focus on preventing the enemy from crossing this key route and thus denying them the entire southern section of the map.
Side B as you might have guessed slightly favors the northern section of the map. First off, since the enemy artillery cannot cover this area well but your artillery can(position it in H0/G0) it gives you a slight edge. Secondly, being aggressive and not allowing the enemy to establish a foothold beneath B6 will allow you to “pin” the enemy on the “ice road” with your artillery fire and tanks below. As enemies try to push you will have free shots on them if you are below the ice road since guns cannot depress enough to hit you at first. And lastly, by setting up a defensive group in the F7/H7 areas you can “seal” off all three additional routes with one central group and also have your groups in the north re-position through the central bog/marsh to assist if need be.
For all strategies you seen drawn up below I use a great free tool called MapTactic to illustrate these strategies. MapTactic allows users to either devise strategies alone or invite clan members/friends into a briefing to come up with strategies together.
Side A (Side 1 / Landowner / Green)
For this strategy you have 1 artillery piece that primarily will stay in your base area for a few reasons. It can hit H3/H4, H5/H6, H7, D8, and the ice road if need be which makes it smart to keep your SPG close to the base at least initially.
For the main groups there will be 3 tank destroyers/heavy tanks that focus on burst/high alpha damage sitting on the ice road. At least one tank should have good frontal armor if not two since it will help deal with any enemy force that outnumbers your limited number of tanks here. The main force will be your group of 5 “heavy” tanks that can by any type of tank but are decently mobile and the 6 medium tanks in G5.
Starting off you want all medium tanks(fast as possible) to get into G5 to spot enemies attempting to cross the passage in H5/H6 and to prevent enemies from pushing down into the marsh area. Your heavy group will position themselves back in D2/D3 so that they have shots on spotted enemies but prevent themselves from being spotted when they fire.
If you are able to stop the enemy from crossing H5/H6 and their main force is there but does not sustain major losses you are faced with a few choices. You can send your heavy tank on the route drawn above into J4 to provide additional pressure. By doing this you can then withdraw your medium tanks(might want to send 1-2 back to base to cover bridge) and then attack with your medium tanks/ice road group through the D line. Attentively you can use your heavy group to cover the road and also support your mediums. This second method will make the enemy make the first move with may or may not be in your favor.
This scenario above illustrates a heavy enemy attack on the ice road area. If your medium groups spots little to no tanks in the G/H lines and sees a lot of enemies in the ice road you have two options. As drawn out on the map you send your medium group along with some of your heavy tanks to attack the enemies defending the southern part of the map. You also send at least 2 heavies to cover the bridge and to provide support for the ice road and/or help the mediums attack via the bridge. For your ice road group you should pull them up to the B5 corner to try and hit the enemies before the crest the top of the hill leading to the ice road.
The second option is to “collapse” on the main enemy force that is somewhat isolated from the rest of their team. To do this bring up your ice road group like before and have your mediums attack through the marsh under the bridge. Your heavy group should split to cover the bridge up top(and to protect the base) and to reinforce the ice road. Don’t commit to many down into the marsh since you do not want all of your forces concentrated down there.
This third scenario plays out the enemy running a strategy similar to your own by pushing tanks down into the marsh. To counter this you will want to push your ice road tanks down to attack the weaker enemy force in the north(don’t push if they have 3 or more tanks). Move your heavy tanks down to secure H3/H4 unless if the enemy has 6+ tanks in the marsh in which case you need to commit your heavies so you do not lose your entire medium group. After that reassess the situation, group up your forces(leaving at least 2 defending), and roll over the remaining enemy.
Side B (Side 2 / Attacker / Red)
This strategy focuses on the northern part of the map to start off while keeping other options available. To start off you want your SPG in the 0 line since it’s role initially is to support the ice road or bridge area. Your high alpha/heavy/TD groups in H7/G7 should be set up to defend against an attack coming from the south or the bridge. By having your forces split it will make it harder for an enemy advancing from the south to flank you.
Your medium group in C7 should be highly mobile and work well in soft terrain. Their job is to get to G6 and then the bottom of the ice road as quickly as possible as a group so that any enemies advancing are either killed or stuck on the ice road. The heavy group in G8 should move up to help the mediums complete this task.
The blue routes suggest routes that are possible for each group to take for different situations.
If the enemy does not push the ice road and instead if focused primarily in the southern part of the map you are set up for this. Your medium group and heavy group will push beneath the bridge to help out. The mediums will go into E3 and either continue south , attack the bridge(if there are enemies there), or both. The heavies will push to H5 to either flank any advancing enemies or to provide pressure and wait for the mediums.
By doing this you will leave the backside of your base and your artillery which has moving to E0(for better shots) wide open. However, with your H7/F7 groups close to the base you still have a decent amount of defense to reset a cap since you know where most of the enemy is anyway. You could always leave a heavy to defend if you want.
If the enemy decides to attack through the swamp with supporting tanks in H4 you can re-position to catch them off guard. First off you want your heavy group to hug the D8 wall to get out of any incoming fire from the ice road or bridge. You want your mediums to attack the enemy tanks in the marsh aggressively while your tanks in H7/F7 move south to engage H3/H4. Leave 1 tank to cover the bridge(or 2 depending on how many are in H3/h4) so that the enemy doesn’t have a clear route to your base. Your SPG should stay in position to help cover the ice road/bridge.