This guide is one I wrote during June and July for tribes on 37 and 41.
It works best if tribe members cooperate to share information on current attack IDs and
their launch times. At the bottom is information on how to get the attack IDs if you use a free
account - it's also handy as a quick way to get them for premium users.
Plaudits are due to SlowTarget who developed and published the scripts used here.
I'm sure you all know how to mark incomings the normal way, and how to have a pretty good
guess at ones you didn't see launched.
This guide instead looks at how to identify with much greater certainty incomings that
you didn't see launched. So that in the end, for instance, you'll know for sure whether you're
defending against a real noble train, or a fake train.
What you need to do before starting
1. ideally have a Premium account so that you can add a couple of quickbar links. However,
the attack IDs can be identified with a free account as well.
2. install the Sort script below if you haven't already got it.
3. install the specific Incoming renamer script below - it can always be in addition to
your usual one if you already use a different one.
4. ideally, your tribe will put in place some form of attack ID reference system that
members can consult when they come online after a period of offline time and find new
incomings. More on that further down this guide.
The Sort script works on several of the Overviews pages, e.g. Production - the page that
interests us for the purpose of this guide is the Incoming one.
Entry name: Sort
Once you have installed the script, you use it by going to your Overviews > Incoming screen,
then clicking on the Sort link in your quickbar. That will display a new column to the left of
the others, with the attack ID numbers. You can also see attack IDs on Overviews > Commands.
This version of the Incoming renamer gives you, in addition to the travel speed, the name
and coords of the village the attack is coming from, the launch time including milliseconds,
the landing time including milliseconds (useful for quick reference when you intend sniping).
Remember the launch time shown will only be the right one if you have correctly identified
the incoming attack speed.
Entry name: Incoming
Once you have installed it, you use the Incoming script by, from the Overviews > Incoming screen,
clicking on an Attack link to bring up the screen for that individual attack, then clicking
on the Incoming link in your quickbar. It will display the possible travel speed options, then
click OK next to the appropriate one.
Please note that clicking OK may not appear to do anything ... the various boxes won't
disappear ... but look at the Attack name and that should have changed.
If you want to customise the Incoming script, or add a second version to your quickbar, see
the TW forum topic where the script was first published:
HOW TO IDENTIFY THOSE INCOMINGS YOU'RE NOT SURE ABOUT - PART ONE
The attacks in the following screenshots were launched fairly close together, so you need
to focus on the basic principle being explained here, rather than nitpick at the details
of the examples given. :P
Let's imagine you've just come online to find a range of new incomings since the last one you
To make this explanation simpler, we'll also imagine that another attack is launched very soon after
you come back online. However, further in the guide I'll outline some options if that is not the case.
So at this point your incomings will look something like this:
You've got no way of knowing exactly when the unnamed attacks were sent - other than that
they were after the earlier launch time, and before the later one.
NOW USE THE SORT SCRIPT
1) Click on the Sort script link in your quickbar, and the attack ID numbers will be revealed:
2) Attack ID numbers are assigned by the TW database in order of LAUNCH TIME
of all attacks/supports sent by all players in a world.
So we can now make more sense of the numbers above by clicking on the UP arrow (coloured red)
just under the Attack ID heading - this puts the attack ID numbers into their correct order
by launch time:
HOW TO IDENTIFY THOSE INCOMINGS YOU'RE NOT SURE ABOUT - PART TWO
So you've got the attack IDs in order, as per the last screenshot above.
At this point you may already have noticed a few things:
1. 332252 is fairly soon after the earlier marked attack (ID 331819) - so you know you are
looking for an attack travel speed launched fairly soon after 00:50:05.
2. the sequence of attacks 334770-334857 is fairly close to the later marked attack (ID 335230)
- so you know you are looking for an attack travel speed launched fairly soon before 02:15:51.
3. leaving 334235 and 334252 as less readily identifiable.
SO WE START WITH 1. AND 2. AS THEY WILL BE EASIER TO IDENTIFY
We know that 332252 will have been launched at some point fairly soon after 00:50:05.
We also know that 334770-334857 will have been launched much closer to the later launch
time of 02:15:51.
So based on that information we can end up with the following:
(apologies - I forgot to take a screenshot of that stage with the attack IDs in order, the above
is in order of landing times).
That leaves just two attacks still to be identified, and because we have the launch times of
the other attacks all clearly displayed in the renamed attack names, it makes it much easier
to tell when those missing ones could have been launched.
To explain in a little more detail, you know that:
332252 was launched at 01:01:26
334770 was launched at 02:04:11
So the sequence is:
332252 - 01:01:26
334770 - 02:04:11
Look at the spacings of the attack ID numbers, 3rd and 4th digits:
... 22 (01:01:26) ... 42 ... 47 (02:04:11) ...
Complete the sequence to get something like this:
... 22 (01:01:26) ... 27 ... 32 ... 37 ... 42 ... 47 (02:04:11) ...
That will enable you to make a pretty accurate guess at the launch times of those intervening
stages. So what you will end up with is something like this (in order of landing times):
And to double-check we've got it right, here's the full list in order of of attack IDs/launch times):
AAAHHHH THAT'S ALL VERY WELL ... BUT!
Yes, the obvious objection to all the above is, what do you do if you haven't already got
any incomings marked to serve as a benchmark to judge the other timings against?
Don't despair - this is where cooperation with other tribe members comes into play.
The obvious option:
is to ask other members who are currently online whether they have incomings, and what the
attack IDs and launch times of those incomings are.
They can check for ID numbers both in their Incomings, and their own outgoing
Commands (both attack and support).
The preferred option:
is one which will not leave anything to chance, and which will enable you to mark your
incomings even if nobody else is online at the time to compare attack IDs with.
The best way to put option b into practice is via a tribe-wide initiative which players either volunteer
to help with, or are expected to take part in as part of general tribe co-operation.
PUTTING IN PLACE AN ATTACK ID NUMBER REFERENCE SYSTEM
Rather than simply rely on being able to compare attack ID numbers with people who happen
to be online at the time, it is more reliable to create a section in the tribal forum which will
contain the ID numbers of attacks launched at regular intervals - say hourly.
Here's one way in which such a section could be set up, on a volunteer basis or otherwise:
1. members can be asked to nominate TWO server times (on the full hour) when they are
normally online. They are then assigned ONE server time (e.g. 14:00).
2. On a daily basis, at around that server time (e.g. 14:00), the member will launch an attack
(maybe a farming run, or an odd axe thrown at a barb which is then cancelled after
you have the ID number).
The member identifies the attack ID number for that attack using the Sort script, or using
the method outlined lower down in the 'Free account' section of this guide. It is then posted in
the relevant part of the tribal forum together with the launch time.
So a few minutes after 14:00 they might post something like this:
14:03 - 389275
An hour later someone else will then post something like:
15:01 - 400192
Hopefully the advantages of such a system are clear to you all:
Whenever you log in to find unmarked incomings, even if after an interval of several hours,
you'll be able to identify their launch times pretty precisely.
What happens if people cannot be online on a particular day when they are due to post an ID number?
Two options that I can think of off the top of my head:
1. if you have a sitter, make sure they're aware it needs doing, or
2. swap with another member for that day.
HOW TO USE THE ATTACK ID NUMBERS WITH FREE ACCOUNTS
With free accounts you won't be able to benefit from renaming the incomings using the Incoming
script, and being able to use the Sort script to reveal all attack IDs in a sortable list.
However, the most important feature of the attack IDs is simply that you can identify what
is heading for your village - and that you can do with a free account.
Here's how - with apologies to the more experienced players for the bits that go over very familiar ground.
STEP ONE - ATTACK ID NUMBER
There are two ways of getting the ID number.
a) at the rally point, hover your mouse over the link of the incoming attack. That will cause
the URL of that link to appear in the status bar at the bottom of your browser window (in
Firefox and Opera at least).
b) if that does not work for you, the alternative option is to RIGHT click the attack link, and
from the menu that appears select 'Open in new tab' or equivalent. That opens the attack in an
individual screen with the URL displayed in the location bar near the top of your browser window.
Whichever method you use, the number you are looking for is the one that follows the
'&id=' towards the end of the URL.
In the example screenshots above, the ID number is 517908.
STEP TWO - LAUNCH TIME
Once you have the attack ID number, go to the relevant topic in the Attack IDs forum section and
check your number against those posted there. Here's a screenshot of the attack IDs for the same
time span as the example attack above:
This will help you determine an approximate launch time for the attack. The closest match to
our attack ID (517908) is the one posted by MXM. So we can roughly estimate that our
attack was launched at around 19.00.
STEP THREE - TRAVEL TIME AND TYPE OF ATTACK
Once you have a rough idea what the launch time was, go to the TW Stats section for
your world, and open the Distance calculator.
In the Distance calculator, enter the coordinates of your village, and the attacking village,
and on the next screen you will see something like this:
Our example attack lands at 21.10, and we have already estimated that it was launched at
around 19.00. That gives you an estimated travel time of 2 hours 10 minutes. The closest match
to this is 2 hours 14 minutes - so we now know that the incoming attack is at Ram/Cat speed.
Keep a record of your incomings - you can do this on paper, in a word editor like Wordpad, or via
in-game mail addressed to yourself - using both landing times and attack IDs as reference points.
Congratulations if you made it all the way down to the bottom of the guide!