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Part 1 - Basic Deathmatch Tactics

Chances are, if you’ve played the single player missions in Quake 2, you already have some basic combat techniques for success in a firefight. While many of those skills can transfer over to deathmatch, some don’t or some require alteration. Here’s a rundown on the basics


Running
If someone were chasing your with a double-barreled shotgun would you be walking or running? Running, of course! So the same holds true for deathmatch in Quake 2. Running should be second nature in a deathmatch game. So second nature in fact I recommend turning on Always Run in the Options menu. This way you don’t have to hold down the "shift" key to make your character run. This can make tight maneuvering on cliffs and ledges tricky, but the positives far outweigh the negatives. Just remember that a slow moving target is a dead duck.

Quick Tip
When you have always run on you can still walk at normal speed by holding down the shift key as you walk.

Jumping
Jumping is a very versatile tactic in deathmatch. Sporadic jumping is good for dodging gunfire and missiles as well as throwing off an enemies targeting. If you’ve managed to back an enemy into a corner or a wall a great tactic is to jump on top of them and then look down and unload (gunfire that is) on their head! Once you start playing deathmatch games you’ll see a lot of jumping going on. Most of this is for a good reason: it helps save your life and confuse your opponent.

Strafing
Strafing, or side stepping as it is also known, is simply moving to your left and right (on the setup I gave you strafing is the A and D keys). Simply put, if you aren’t strafing you aren’t going to be successful in deathmatches. Strafing is primarily useful for dodging gunfire or rockets. Being able to strafe and shoot at the same time is a great, and deadly tactic. Practice strafing as much as you can!

Ducking/Crouching
In single player Quake 2 crouching is used primarily to get under short obstacles. That’s probably all you should use it for in deathmatch as well. In the first deathmatch game of Quake 2 I played I noticed several players using a tactic of ducking and firing at the same time. This may seem smart but 9.9 times out of 10 it isn’t. Ducking slows you down, opens you up to easy fire, and only works against people who don’t use the mouse for looking up and down (so not many people).

Swimming
Taking the battle underwater has its benefits and drawbacks in deathmatches. It’s much harder to maneuver effectively underwater in Quake 2, which can help balance a fight between a wounded player and a healthy one. On the other hand good players are just as effective underwater as above. Pressing forward and looking in the direction you want to go will take you there faster when swimming. Pressing the jump button (space bar usually) will make you swim up towards the surface - very important!

Shooting
Shooting will be covered more in the next page but there are two important points we should cover now. First the crosshair can be useful for aiming but you should remember that it's not 100% accurate. Meaning just because you placed the crosshair on a target doesn’t mean your shot is going to hit it. Still I use the crosshair and I recommend you do too. Second, constant shooting can be effective in scarring of would-be foes, but it also alerts others to your position - which isn’t good if you’re trying to slip past a person or group of persons unnoticed.

Talking
You can chat with other players in a deathmatch by pressing the T key, typing your message, and then hitting enter. Your message will be broadcast to all other players in the level. For the most part you won’t be doing much chatting because it takes up a lot of time and opens you up as an easy kill. If you do have to talk try to find a dark place to hide first. Of course if someone should find you while you're typing, my condolences. If you start typing a message and change your mind hit the Esc button before you send it to cancel.

Camping
Camping, also known as "sniping," is the tactic of sitting in one area of a level - usually concealed or above the other players - and waiting for hapless victims to walk by and then blasting them. This may seem like a good idea but it is NOT! Camping won’t bring you many more frags in the end. What it will bring you is the spite and ire of all the other players. They will hunt you relentlessly and ridicule you verbally before (and usually after) you change your ways. All I can say is just don’t camp!


Those are the basic tactics to a Quake 2 deathmatch. Weapons are as vital as tactics though so let's learn about the weapons in Quake 2. Click the link below.

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