A move command is a command to a unit to move from one place to another. Different move commands order different kinds of movement. A unit may have a sequence consisting of many move orders of any type issued to it. Each individual move in the sequence ends at a particular place called a waypoint. The first move starts at the unit's current position; all subsequent moves start at the preceding move's waypoint.
There is a separate article about the speeds of various move commands.
Commonalities in Move Commands
Movement commands are generally issued by selecting the desired type of movement and then clicking on the map with the mouse, thus placing a waypoint. A Command Line extends from the unit’s current position to the waypoint.
Additionally, when an infantry unit is moving and the waypoint is placed over ground terrain (i.e. not a building or vehicle), the actual destination for each one of the teams that make up the moving unit is highlighted in yellow. Teams B and C (if any) also have their adjacent destinations highlighted when plotting moves and when giving facing orders attached to a final waypoint. Note that the final facing is important for positioning “wing man” teams, so you should attach facing orders to final waypoints as needed. Note: if you need even more granular control over each of your teams, feel free to split them and issue individual movement commands.
Infantry soldiers/units automatically try to position themselves “smartly” around and along buildings, walls, ridgelines and other terrain which provides cover and concealment. When targets present themselves soldiers will try to gain line of fire by repositioning themselves. However, as in real life soldiers are reluctant to reposition themselves in exposed positions when they are currently in good cover.
Units do not always follow the exact Command Line drawn on the map, but will choose their movement path independently based on the terrain between the start and end points, including finding their way around impassable obstacles. The chosen route depends on the type of movement command issued, as well as if the unit is being fired on or not. Keep in mind that the longer the distance between the start and ending points, the more the route the unit chooses might deviate from what you had in mind when you gave the order to move out.
You can issue several Move Commands (from the same type, e.g. Move + Move; or different types, e.g. Move + Fast) one after the other, generating a string of waypoints that the unit will pass through one by one. There is no limit as to how many waypoints you can place, though more than a handful is hardly practical.
Infantry units will usually halt at each waypoint for a few seconds and regroup, attempt to maintain formation etc. Vehicles will simply pass through waypoints if it is a string of the same movement types and if they can do so without having to slow down for a hard turn.
Note: new players tend to make a number of common mistakes when ordering around vehicles. Here are couple of tips (all are obvious when you think about how people drive vehicles in the real world):
- when maneuvering in difficult terrain with many obstacles (such as densly packed urban areas with narrow streets etc.), use Slow movements
- when setting waypoints for your vehicles, avoid sharp turns. If your movement command creates a 90 degree turn, the vehicle has to slow down or even stop in order to make the turn. By setting 2 or 3 waypoints instead at less steep angles, the vehicle will be able to move much quicker.
- if moving in a convoy, make sure to space out the intervals between vehicles sufficiently, and increase the distances the faster you want them to go! Have you ever tried driving at 50 mph with only a couple of meters of distance to the car in front of you? Not recommended!
- pay attention to impassable terrain between the starting point and destination when plotting movement commands. Vehicles will attempt to complete your orders and if faced with impassable terrain, may take a drastic deviation from the course you had intended for them. If you move through difficult terrain, use Slow Movements and set several waypoints closer together. Plotting one waypoint across half the map is inviting disaster.
When you issue a Move Command with the cursor placed over a vehicle capable of transporting soldiers (or over its icon), the unit that is given the Move Command will automatically embark onto the transport vehicle, either as passengers or, in some cases, as crew. When you issue a Movement type order with a waypoint placed inside a building, a pop up menu will allow you to select the floor level that you would like the unit to occupy as its final destination. You can select Level 1 if you want the unit to simply enter the building, and then select Level 2 for the next waypoint later on to instruct it to move up, or you could immediately select Level 2 and have the unit pass through the ground level immediately to the second in one motion. While moving, soldiers will sometimes stop and take a quick shot at nearby/ exposed enemy troops, then resume moving. This depends on the Movement Command issued, and is more likely for enemies in front of the unit, and less to the sides and rear. Moving troops that come under heavy fire usually try to move FASTer, except when they are so tired that they could only use walking speed (i.e. not even QUICK). In that case they will switch to SLOW (i.e. crawling), and sometimes they cancel their move altogether to seek nearby cover.
When issuing Movement commands, keep in mind the terrain and ground condition that you want to order a unit to move over. Vehicles can bog (and subsequently become immobilized) at any time, but the risk is much higher in bad terrain. Ground conditions (as well as the terrain itself) also play a role for infantry, affecting the soldiers’ speeds and rate of exhaustion.
Infantry - This is the standard “move from A to B” command usually used in situations where enemy contact is not expected or is unlikely. It is fairly slow, but it maintains unit cohesion, pretty good all-round awareness (but no anticipation of imminent contact), and is not tiring to infantry. Usually units that come under fire while executing a Move Command stop or change their movement order and take evasive action, and there is a high chance that they will return fire and look for cover.
Vehicles - this command means slow speed and usually instructs the crew to unbutton to maintain good all-round observation.
Restrictions - Move is not available when a vehicle has been knocked out or immobilized (usually by a track, wheel or engine hit, but also if the crew has been incapacitated). For infantry, move might not be available temporarily due to wounded and incapacitated soldiers as well as excessive fatigue (in which case you have to let the soldiers rest a little)
Example - use Move to change floors in a friendly occupied and previously cleared building when speed is not important. Use Move to drive down a road not expecting enemy contact.
Infantry - soldiers move at a jog. This movement type slightly emphasizes speed over cover, cohesion and awareness, but is not a full-out run. It may lead to some bunching up, as it’s more difficult for soldiers to remain in formation. More tiring than Move but still sustainable for longer periods, at least for fit soldiers.
Vehicles - this command means medium speed, and emphasizes arriving at the waypoint quickly over returning fire.
Restrictions - same as for Move, but fitness and fatigue play a bigger role.
Example - this command is best used to shift positions quickly when speed is important but when the area to move through is covered and not under immediate enemy view and fire
Infantry - Fast Movement maximizes speed to get from one place to another at the cost of fatigue, and also decreases awareness and spotting ability, especially to the sides and rear (relative to the unit’s movement direction). Fast makes the unit less likely to return fire or to stop or change its movement direction and objective. Keep in mind that this means that a soldier running FAST will NOT stop to reload, either.
Vehicles - Fast means movement near the maximum speed possible for the terrain, and a decreased awareness of what is happening around the vehicle.
Restrictions - Fast has the same availability restrictions as Move (immobilization, fatigue, etc.), and, additionally, might be unavailable when certain components of a vehicle are damaged (even if not fully destroyed), or for infantry units, when combat/equipment loads are excessive.
Example - use Fast to have a squad sprint across an open road from one building to another, making sure that they do not slow down to return fire. Use Fast to cross a stretch of open ground with a vehicle in order to reduce the time of exposure to enemy tanks.
Infantry - Slow is the equivalent of a Crawl command. Soldiers move forward in the prone position, maximizing cover and concealment at the cost of speed and fatigue. Crawling is extremely slow and very tiring and should only be used to move short distances. Crawling soldiers are generally hard for the enemy to spot (depending on terrain). Crawling soldiers tend to pause and return fire at nearby/exposed enemy troops often, then resume moving. After reaching the destination, soldiers who move SLOW (i.e. crawl) will tend to keep their heads down for a little while even if there is no incoming fire and no enemies are spotted.
Vehicles - instructs the vehicle to move slowly, at walking speed. Useful when coordinating vehicle movements with infantry.
Restrictions - same as for all Movement commands.
Example - crawling up the last meters towards a crest or edge of a tree line helps maintain concealment. Slow vehicle movement makes the vehicle less likely to appear as a sound contact to the enemy.
Infantry - this command maximizes the unit’s awareness for possible enemy contact. Soldiers advance slowly, weapons ready. Upon seeing an enemy unit, or when fired upon (even if the enemy is not seen) the unit stops immediately. This is a good command to use when enemy contact is imminent. When soldiers using HUNT get too tired, they stop and pause for 90 seconds before continuing to HUNT.
Note: in combination with a Target Arc command, Hunt is restricted to only the area within the arc, and ignores enemy units outside the arc.
Vehicles - orders vehicles to advance slowly and observe the battlefield for enemy contacts. Upon spotting a threat, such as another enemy vehicle or tank, or when fired upon (even if the enemy is not seen), the vehicle stops immediately.
Restrictions - same as all other Movement commands.
Example - Hunt is very useful for cleaning out houses which are suspected to have enemy hiding inside, or as a “move to contact” order for tanks.
This command is available for infantry squads only, and requires a certain minimum headcount (in other words, you cannot use assault if you only have two or three people active). It instructs the squad to conduct a so called “leapfrog” movement, which is executed by splitting the squad into a movement element and a firing element. The moving element advances at FAST speed (the same limitations apply as with the FAST command) while the firing element remains stationary and provides covering fire. After the movement element stops (ending the first “leap”), the roles switch, and the movement element (now the firing element) provides covering fire while the firing element (now the moving element) advances, reaches and overtakes the firing element, and arrives at the next “leap”. This procedure repeats until the squad has reached its designated objective location.
Assault is usually executed in the face of enemy fire (typically from the front) and is a good compromise of security and forward movement while maintaining unit cohesion and limiting fatigue. The disadvantages are that it is a fairly slow form of advance, and that it requires a certain minimum unit experience to implement.
Restrictions - Since “leapfrogging” does not make much sense with only a handful of soldiers, it requires a certain minimum headcount.
Example - use Assault to cover open ground over long distances while under enemy fire. Assault can be also useful to clean out buildings (only the assault team is exposed to ambushes)
This command enables an infantry unit with demo charges to blast a hole through a building wall, exterior or interior, as well as through tall stone or brick walls, and of course also through the nasty Bocage hedgerows, allowing units to pass through the breach.
Note: the breach may not automatically be wide enough for vehicles to pass through. This may require more than one blast attempt.
The time it takes to conduct this command varies based on unit experience, and can range from one minute to several minutes per detonation.
The Blast Command instructs the unit where to move. This makes it no different from any other Movement Command, except that the unit attempts to blow up a section of (nearby!) wall or hedgerow along its path.
Note: It is a good idea to place the Blast Command on the opposite side of the wall you want breached. This ensures that the correct section of wall is breached and that the unit moves through the opening.
Restrictions - only available for infantry units carrying demo charges.
Example - moving in a city down an open street can be lethal - especially when the enemy has a few well positioned machineguns in place. A much safer, but more time consuming method, is to blow holes in adjoining buildings, avoiding the open street entirely. Another good use for this command is to enter and storm a building from an angle the enemy isn’t expecting.
See the mark mines article.
Simple “back up” command, available only to vehicles. Instructs the vehicle to drive backwards without changing its facing (e.g. keeping its gun and stronger front armor forward towards the enemy while retreating).
Restrictions - same as for all Movement commands.
Example - use Reverse to back up into cover while keeping a tank’s front armor directed at the enemy.