Competitive teamgames come in three forms: 2 vs 2’s, 3 vs 3’s and 4 vs 4’s.
2 vs 2’s
In 2 vs 2 matches on standard maps, each player on a team has an opponent on their side of the map. This limits passive approaches, making fast castles and booming difficult if not detrimental. The typical meta for 2 vs 2 matches is for one teammate to open with archers (transitioning into crossbows in the Castle Age) and another to open with scouts (transitioning to Knights in the Castle Age). The combination of these two units is very common in team games, as it is not a unit composition that can be countered by one unit (like skirmisher’s can counter both archers and spearman). This is dependent on the teammates being able to effectively communicate and take engagements together, however.
Scouts and archers also are unique units in the Feudal Age, as they are units which can do damage quickly when given an opportunity due to their high damage output (unlike skirmishers and spears) and the maneuvarability (scouts with their speed, and archers with their range.)
Bear in mind when playing a 2 vs 2 that if you attempt to play passively and protect your base with counter units (such as spearmen and skirmishers) where an opponent is playing scout and archer meta, the opponent has the advantage of having a unit choice they are sticking with in the long term which will always provide a threat to your base when unprotected, in a way that skirmishers and spearmen cannot. Consider when a player makes scouts and transitions into knights, they will benefit from bloodlines and the cavalry related upgrades, whereas it is unlikely that the opponent will benefit from infantry related blacksmith upgrades for anything other than defence in the Castle Age, meaning that the player going cavalry gains full map control and the infantry player is merely reacting.
Lastly, consider that skirmishers can be countered by scouts and spearman can be countered by archers, so although each unit group counters the other, only scouts and archers would do economic damage.
3 vs 3’s
In 3 vs 3’s, there will typically be two players neighboring two opponents (known as “flanks”) and a player in the middle (known as pocket). Flanks and pocket’s have both got unique roles, but both are equally as important.
The meta is that flank players will open archers and the pocket opens scouts, similar to 2 vs 2’s, however the pocket also has the job of supporting each flank when they need it. The flank’s role is most important early game, as this is when they can contribute the most by damaging the economy of their opponent flank. Due to the fact that the pocket’s scouts cannot be in both place at once and be effective, sometimes flanks may add a few skirmishers (only about 1/5 of their army). The more damage the flank can do to their enemy flank earlier, the more probable it is that the team will win engagements later on, as the opponent flank cannot contribute military to important team fights.
Pockets have multiple roles. They have to simultaneously have a healthy boom going as well as contribute scouts to their allies’ fights. You will sometimes see players in pocket play greedy by prioritizing one of these instead of having a healthy balance of both, and this can sometimes catch opponents of guard, however it can also lead to significant consequences if it does not work.
The reason for this is simple. Just because a player is pocket does not mean that they cannot be targeted for feudal aggression. If a player wishes to play greedy and boom in the pocket and not contribute to their flank’s fights, it can result in an enemy pocket or flank appearing to do damage, or can result in majorly stunting an ally flank by having all of their military be cleared out so they must start producing again to contribute, or even economic damage to that ally flanks base that allows for an effective snowball for the opponent to victory.
If a pocket player instead commits to feudal aggression, it can result in a delayed Castle Age time and a stunted economy for the pocket. This is significant, as the pocket player should be considered the best player economically on the team as they are least likely to be harrassed. This economy is required for later in the game for later in the game where the pocket will flood the map with Palladin’s or some other heavy unit which will ultimately cost a lot to invest in.
4 v 4’s
4 vs 4’s operate in a similar way as 3 vs 3’s, however there is two pocket players supporting each flank ally. As this is the case, it is more acceptable for one player to play outside the meta of flank-archers, pocket-scouts depending on the map and the ability to communicate within the team.
If the team can communicate well, it may be possible for one pocket to fast castle into a boom and then either sling or commit to a heavy unit to invest into, provided that the other pocket can communicate with each flank and assist with scouts and knights in the meantime where each flank requires it.