Daun's chief of staff Lt. Gen Franz Moritz Lacy conceived a night attack on Frederick's camp - against the Prussian front to fix their attention, but more importantly on the Prussian right, or southern, flank where considerable damage could be done. Frederick's right, composed of 11 battalions and 28 squadrons, was at the village of Hochkirch. Immediately south of the village was a small redoubt with smaller works on either side with a total of twenty 12 pounders plus six smaller pieces protected by three battalions of grenadiers. The Prussian artillery overlooked and dominated open terrain. Out front beyond some woods were two Prussian 'free battalions' - light infantry - but they were poorly placed to detect the planned Austrian attack. Further south was the Wuischke hollow hidden from Prussian view, beyond which the ground rose to the Kuppritzer-Berg, a hill occupied by Croats.
Lacy's plan was unique in that it featured several independent columns that converged on the Prussian flank, something that had not been attempted before. In addition, on the advice of Col. Charles Amadei, the independent forces not only approached the Prussian position in column, but attacked in column as well. This type of plan, entirely new in concept, would remain a feature of Austrian operations into the French Revolutionary Wars.
As Frederick was delayed by circumstances, so was Daun. Clearing a route through the woods on the Kuppritzer-Berg took time, delaying the attack from the 12th to the 14th.