|American Observation Post|
An American Observation Post on top of a low-yield Munitions point
|Role||Sector protection and enhancement structure|
|Production XP||+17 xp|
- See also: Observation Post (Wehrmacht)
The Observation Post is a Defensive Structure constructed by the American army in Company of Heroes. Built directly on top of a Strategic Point, this structure protects the point from being captured by the enemy, while increasing the resource production in that sector. Additionally, it enhances the sight-range of the sector point by a small amount, and provides early-warning against sector takeovers simply by drawing enemy fire. It can be constructed by several different Infantry units.
American forces lack heavy-duty defensive emplacements for repelling enemy forces. Instead, they rely on a wide variety of Passive Defenses to protect their valuable territory. The Observation Post is one component in the fortification of such sectors.
An Observation Post can be constructed by Engineer Squads, Riflemen Squads and Airborne Squads, for the cost of 200. It can only be built on top of a Strategic Point that has been captured and linked directly to your HQ territory. It consists of a large wooden shack, surrounded by sand bags and barbed wire, with a communications mast mounted on its side. The Strategic Point flag sticks out the top of the structure.
Once created, an Observation Post "secures" the Strategic Point on which it is built. As long as the Observation Post remains standing, enemy units cannot capture the Strategic Point or even render it neutral. They can only open fire at the Observation Post.
In addition to protecting the Strategic Point, the Observation Post also enhances resource production in the sector. The more resources a sector produces by default, the bigger the bonus you get from placing an Observation Post inside it, as illustrated by the table below:
|Resource Point Type||Resource Point Size||Original Value||Bonus||Total|
Furthermore, the Observation Post also increases the sight-range of the Strategic Point to 15 meters (from the default 10 meters). More importantly however, since it serves as a target for enemy fire, you will receive an early warning when enemy units pass by the structure as they will usually open fire at it, prompting you with an "Under attack!" message. Without the Observation Post, your first warning of enemies in the sector will come when they actually start grabbing the Strategic Point, which may already be too late.
The ability to protect Strategic Points can be of paramount importance to the Americans. Their defensive fortifications, while intricate, can often be wiped out in concentrated enemy attacks, leaving sectors entirely undefended. Buying a few extra seconds mobile defense units to respond to an enemy attack can save a sector from being overrun.
Additionally, the Americans often take quite some time to fortify a sector properly to begin with. If they can ensure that a sector won't be captured while their Engineer Squads are busy fortifying it, they can save a lot of effort and needless headaches.
Therefore, construction of Observation Posts on forward Strategic Points is very helpful. Once a Strategic Point is secured in this fashion, you'll have the extra time you need to fortify against or respond to enemy attacks.
In addition, resource production is extremely important for the Americans throughout the battle. Their high-end buildings and units require large quantities of resources - especially Fuel. Therefore it is necessary to construct these posts on all high-yield Strategic Points under American control as early as possible, even if such points are not easily defensible. The Manpower cost is easy for the Americans to meet thanks to their reduced unit upkeep costs (see Supply Yard), and the reward in Fuel and Munitions is well worth the investment. Even if the enemy does manage to drive you out of the sector, the Observation Post will at least delay him from taking the sector and milking it for resources.
Try putting Observation Posts on high-value sectors first, then medium-value sectors, and only then fortify your forward sectors. Start this process early - as soon as the forward sectors are becoming secure enough to protect your rear, or even earlier if you can afford it.
The Observation Post has almost as much health as an American base structure, but this isn't saying much. The main problem is that many weapons - especially high-explosives and tank guns - receive bonus damage against this structure, and can take it out easily. Mainly, this structure will only really protect the sector against infantry - assuming they don't have high-explosive munitions themselves.
Note that when constructed on a forward Strategic Point, the immobile Observation Post becomes a great target for enemy artillery. Even light artillery (mortars) find this a great target. They can easily reduce the structure to rubble in a few hits. This will often happen just prior to an attack on that specific sector, so use this foreknowledge to your advantage.
- The game files reveal that the Observation Post was originally meant to act as a Medic Station, retrieving nearby casualties to create new squads. This function was eventually split to a new structure instead.