From the hints that I have picked up on from the McCain camp, here is a glimpse of what I believe the Palin (Republican) VP debate strategy might be (nothing too unexpected).
In addition to the above strategy, Palin will also be tasked with remembering her lines. She will feel more pressure at this debate than she felt at the Republican Convention or in any of her previous debates when running for Governor. We know that under the added pressure of the national spotlight and when forced to talk about specifics, she can be rattled. If she gets rattled by the cameras, the crowd, the national spotlight, and the questioning... then all bets are off. This might cause her to forget her lines and lose her footing.
Another pitfall for Palin could be the strict format. The McCain camp put all sorts of restrictions of the debate process, including limits on response times, thinking that this would be helpful to Palin. But it might end up being more harmful. The time limitations will only add to the strain that Palin will be under. She will have less time to formulate her thoughts... this could end up making her shaky.
There will be no lifelines for Palin tonight... all of her lifelines have been used up.
Biden? Biden must maintain poise, must be a gentleman at all times, must avoid patronizing Palin, and must not fall into any of the traps that I mentioned.
The Post Debate Strategy
Spin, Spin, Spin, Spin, and more Spin.
The Republicans are already prepping for this. They have been lowering expectations all week. They have lowered expectations so much that even if Palin does a poor job it won't be so bad afterall. They are also attempting to invalidate the importance of the debate itself. One argument they may use is that Gwen Ifill is Pro-Democrat/Pro-Obama and therefore the debate is invalid (these seem to be the talking points).
Republicans may also attempt to label Biden as sexist and arrogant. There will be no shortage of excuses for Palin, if she gives a poor or mediocre performance.
NPR Discussion About Past Debates...and Pitfalls that Biden May Face