Company of Heroes players know the MG42 all too well. It is arguably the strongest Wehrmacht unit you can build at the start of any game. It is the most important weapon to compensate for the disadvantage of being permanently outnumbered that you have against almost all other factions at the beginning. Except maybe the sniper, which can be built in the first building. But how do you use the MG42 correctly?
Personally, I’m very interested in World War II weapons. Since I’ve been playing Company of Heroes, I’m quite familiar with most of them. One of the most important strategic tools is the MG42. It has become a cult object that you see very often in movies. I can also understand why many fans buy an MG42 airsoft gun. It looks simply great and is tremendously effective.
Building the MG42
The good thing about the MG42 is that you can build it right at the beginning in the main building. This means that no additional resources are needed to get it started. Therefore, every Wehrmacht player usually starts building this weapon. It costs 260 manpower, which is not that much. Because in comparison, the Grenadiers are available for 240 and the Pioneers for 200.
Some beginners are tempted to litter the field with MG’s at the beginning. But this is not a good idea. Because an MG42 is very slow and has to be placed. It takes about 5 seconds to do this. In that time the enemy will be able to drive around it with a vehicle, or a mortar will take it under fire from a long distance.
MG42 – Correct use
The big advantage of the MG42 is that it nails the enemy. Should any enemy infantry come within firing range, they are immediately brought to their knees. Thus, the enemy can only move slower and crawl on the ground. If they do, in the same time own units can run on so and take out people one by one.
Somewhat problematic about this is that the field of view of the MG42 is much smaller than the range of fire. This means that people sometimes see the enemy much too late. So it often happens that an MG hits a unit and tries to set up the weapon. In this time the unit has run away or moved in such a way that the MG42 can’t hit it.
To avoid such problems it is important that the MG squad is behind the combat units. They give the sight and spot the enemy. If they see someone, then you send them into cover and pull the MG42 behind them. Then it starts its work and starts supporting the infantry.