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Introduction

So you’re ready to take the plunge? You were like so many of us when you purchased Quake 2 and were quickly drawn into its enveloping 3D environment and atmosphere. Perhaps now, though, the single player missions are growing tired and familiar. You’ve played the computer until your joints ached and you want something new. You’ve heard that multiplay over the Internet is the way to go, but you’ve also quickly realized that it isn’t as easy as it sounds. Fear not!

This site has been designed to dispel any and all fears you may have about Quake 2 multiplayer. I’ll cover all the basics and even go beyond the basics. With my assistance you’ll be forging your way into the jungle in no time. But first, we’ll need to make sure you have all the proper equipment.


SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS
This part you most likely already have taken care of. If you’ve bought Quake 2 and it runs fairly well on your computer then you shouldn’t have any trouble on the system side. Just to cover all our bases though here are the minimum system requirements for Quake 2, as recommend by id Software (the creators of Quake 2):

English Language version of Windows 95 or NT 4.0 with 100% compatible system
Pentium 90mhz processor (130mhz recommend)
16 megs RAM (24 recommend)
100% Sound Blaster Compatible sound card
Quad speed CD ROM
25 - 400 MB hard disk space

MULTIPLAYER REQUIREMENTS
The fact that you can play Quake 2 on your PC does not guarantee that you can play it over the Internet. If you don’t meet all of the requirements I list below then it may be unlikely, or impossible, for you to play Quake 2 multiplayer.

Modem
The minimum speed recommend for playing Quake 2 over the Internet is a 28.8 kps. This is a very average modem speed nowadays. If you’ve got a 33.6, 56k, ISDN, or a cable modem all the better, but if all you have is a 28.8 then that will be enough.

Networks
What if you don’t access the Internet through a modem? I’m speaking to those people who get their Internet connections through a network at work or school perhaps. Instead of a modem you use a Ethernet card to connect to your network. As long as your connection is fast enough (we have T1 access at my college) you shouldn’t need to worry about speed; in fact you’ll probably be the envy of most modem players!

ISP
For those of use who don’t get net access through work or school there’s ISPs, which stands for Internet Service Provider. The only thing that need concern you about your ISP is its quality. Do you frequently have speed and connection problems when surfing the net? Those problems might also translate to trouble playing Quake 2 over the Internet.

Make sure you have a quality ISP. If local ISPs aren’t to your taste then there are several National ISPs that have dialups in most American cities. Some well known national ISPs are ATT Worldnet, Mindspring, & Earthlink. (I personally use Worldnet and have had little or no trouble with them). Local ISPs may also be a good choice if you prefer more personal, homegrown service. You can find an ISP in your town by checking with The List.

One VERY Important Note!
If you are accessing the Internet through one of the big on-line services like America On-Line or CompuServe, then generally you CANNOT play Quake 2 multiplayer. These services are different than ISPs because they do not provide a "true" connection to the Internet. They can be fine for e-mail and web surfing but when it comes to shooting it up with 32 of your favorite friends over the net they don’t make the cut. If you are a member of these services then I recommend either switching to an ISP or subscribing to an ISP and keeping your on-line service subscription. For example, AOL has a billing plan that lets you access their service through an ISP and pay only $10 a month for accessing AOL (since you use your ISP for dialup and Internet access).

I should note that it is technically possible to play Quake 2 over AOL - but it is generally so sloooooow it's not worth the effort. However, I have heard from AOL users who had 56 and even 33.6 connections who said they could get satisfactory speeds over AOL, so you might want to give it a try.

I should also add that I have recieved e-mail from an MSN user who says that he (with a 56k modem and using Dial Up Networking) has had no problems playing Quake 2 over MSN.


HOW THIS SITE WORKS
Before we continue I should make some mention about the layout of this site and how to best use it. The navigation bar to your left is essentially a user’s guide for this tutorial. All of the pages in this tutorial are linked to inside the blue navigation box. It is laid out in sequential order just like a table of contents. Thus you should follow the guide in sequential order.

There are navigation links located at the bottom of each page in this guide. A "Next" link will take you to the next page in the guide. A "Previous" link will take you to the page preceding the current page you are at in the guide.


Now that we know how this site works and that we have what it takes (computer-wise) to play Quake 2 over the Internet, let’s start preparing! Click the link below to go to the next page in the tutorial.

Part 1 - Deathmatch Introduction

So far I’ve been referring to playing Quake 2 over the Internet as "Quake 2 multiplayer." There are several different modes for playing Quake 2 multiplayer, but the most popular is known as "deathmatch."

The premise of deathmatch is simplicity at its finest. You and one or more other players run around Quake 2 levels trying to kill each other. Each time you kill another player you get one kill (a kill in Quake 2 is called a "frag"). The more frags you get the higher you are ranked in the group. The goal is to get as many frags as you can. Easy, huh? It’s basically paintball or laser tag on a cyber level (but lots funner!).

There are several other variations of Quake 2 multiplayer out there. Cooperative play for example has players working together as teams either trying to kill another team or trying to finish a level. Capture the Flag (CTF) is another team based variation that has two teams trying to capture the other teams flag and return it to their base (just like in grade school!). Although we will be covering some of these other multiplayer modes later, I will be focusing mainly on deathmatch. It’s the most popular mode of play, and basic deathmatch skills translate to every other kind of Quake 2 multiplay.


Our next objective is to get you comfortable with the most popular method of game control in deathmatch (the keyboard & mouse). Click the link below to go to the next page

Part 1 - Basic Control: The Keyboard & Mouse

If you’re fortunate enough to already be comfortable playing Quake 2 with a keyboard and mouse then you can probably skip this part. However if you’re newer to 3D shooters then you probably aren’t using the keyboard and mouse for control in the game (maybe you’re using just the keyboard or a gamepad or joystick). Before we configure Quake 2 for the keyboard and mouse let me explain why you should be using it in the first place.

When you think of playing video games you usually picture yourself using some sort of video game controller. After all arcade games have joysticks, your Nintendo had a gamepad, why shouldn’t the same be true for your PC? For the most part your assumption is correct, but when it comes to 3D shooters (such as Quake 2) that isn’t the case.

It turns out that the most natural way to play a 3D shooter is with the mouse and keyboard. It allows for much quicker, natural, and fluid movements. Being able to react and move instantly in deathmatch games is critical and one reason why you must master the keyboard and mouse. The keyboard is used for functions like moving forwards and back, sidestepping, jumping, and changing weapons. The mouse is used in tandem with the keyboard for moving left and right, looking up and down, firing, and other functions like crouching. If you’ve never used the keyboard and mouse for control here’s how you set it up.


SETTING UP THE MOUSE & KEYBOARD
Before you actually setup Quake 2 for mouse and keyboard control you’ll need to decide which keys and mouse buttons will do what. The problem is that there’s no universal configuration that everyone can use. It’s really a matter of personal taste. However there are some standard configurations out there. The table below lists one of the most popular key and mouse setups (and it’s the one I use):

Keyboard
W move forward
S move back
A strafe left
D strafe right
spacebar jump
C change weapon


Mouse
Button 1 fire
Buton 2 crouch
move mouse
forward
look up
move mouse
back
look down

CONFIGURING YOUR CONTROLS IN QUAKE 2
Now we need to know how to setup Quake 2 for this configuration. This is actually a rather simple process. First startup Quake 2 and launch a new game. Next hit the escape button (Esc) and that brings up the main menu. Move the arrow down to options. Hit enter and a new screen appears. Move the arrow down to customize controls and hit enter. Another screen appears (like the one pictured below) that lets you customize the controls in Quake 2:

Customizing controls in Quake2

Using this menu is easy. Use the arrow keys to move your arrow to the control you wish to change. Let’s try changing a key right now. Move the arrow down to the move forward action. Hit enter and then press W. Quake 2 now knows that when you press "W" it should move your character forward. Notice that you can assign each function to two different keys or mouse buttons if you want. Although I should note that you cannot assign one key to do two different functions. For example, now that I’ve got "W" as move forward I can’t then assign "W" to attack.

Continue to setup your keyboard and mouse for our control setup. Backpedal is "S", step left is "A", step right is "D", attack is "MOUSE 1", jump is "SPACE", down/crouch is "MOUSE 2", and next-weapon is "C".

Once you have finished configuring your keys and buttons hit Esc. This takes us back to the options screen. Now make sure the following options are set to the appropriate values:

Always Run yes
Invert Mouse no
Lookspring no
Lookstrafe no
Freelook yes
Crosshair cross
Use Joystick no

 

Quick Tip
If you play with Always Run on be aware that people will be able to hear your footsteps. If you want to sneek up on somebody hold down the Shift key while you move, that will make you walk at a normal pace.

When you’ve finished changing those options hit Esc. Once you’re at the main menu you can hit Esc again, that will take you back to the game and the changes you’ve made will take effect. Try things out. Bet it feels weird, right? The main thing to remember is give things time. It takes awhile to get used to this control setup (but it will payoff later, I guarantee that).

One thing that may seem too erratic at first is being able to look up and down by moving your mouse forward and back. You can improve this by setting the sensitivity of the mouse. Go back to the main menu and selecting options. Go down to mouse speed and move the slider left and right by pressing the left and right arrow keys. I keep my setting just to the left of the middle. If things still seem erratic you can turn freelook off by setting it to "no." Our main goal right now is to become comfortable with using the mouse and keyboard. If that means turning of some of the special actions then go ahead and do it (just don’t forget to re-enable them when you get better with the mouse and keyboard).

Quick Tip
If you make a mess of your control keys just use the reset to defaults command in the customize controls screen.

The golden rule of using the mouse and keyboard: PRACTICE!!! It may feel weird or uncomfortable at first, but stick with it!!! Play with this control setup regularly, in fact I recommend you play through the game with it at least once. The more time you get using it the better off you’ll be. Don’t be afraid to customize your controls to something other than what I suggest. Whatever makes you most comfortable is what you should use.


Congratulations on mastering - or at least getting aquatinted and friendly - with the mouse and keyboard. Before we move on to basic deathmatch tactics, I'm going to explain how to effectively practice deathmatch skills by yourself in Quake 2. Click the link below.

Part 1 - Cheat Codes & Demos

CHEATS
Practice makes perfect. A golden rule that applies just as much to Quake 2 as anything else in life. If you're going to be a success at deathmatch then you'll need to practice the skills I teach you in this tutorial. The best way, besides actually playing deathmatch, is to practice these skills in the single player missions of Quake 2.

Of course when you're practicing in the single player levels, or deathmatch levels, by yourself you aren't going to want to spend time running around, picking up items or worrying about accidentally killing yourself. This is where cheat codes come in handy. With cheat codes you can get all the weapons at once or make yourself invincible.

To enter the cheat codes first bring down the console by pressing the tilde key (that's the little squiggle (~) to the left of the 1 key). The console then slides down and you are given a prompt at which you can type commands to Quake 2. Enter all the cheat codes you want, pressing enter after each cheat code. When you're done press the tilde key again and the cheats will be enabled. To turn them off enter the codes again. Here are the basic cheat codes:

cheat effect
god invincibility
give all gives you all the weapons and max health
map <mapname> warps you to a specific map (e.g. map base2)

 

Note
We will be learning much more about the console later in this tutorial. For right now however you can just use it for cheating.

DEMOS
It's great to have a concise, written explanation of how to do something (which is what I hope this tutorial is). Written instructions can only go so far though. Some topics can be better illustrated with visual aids. Quake 2 provides a great resource for making and distributing these visual aids: demos.

A demo is essentially just a recording, a movie if you will, of a players action during the game. Every time you start Quake 2 you see demos of some of the levels. You can record and play your own or someone else's demos from within Quake 2.

For this tutorial I have recorded a few demos that can be helpful in illustrating certain points or strategies I talk about. You can download them all in one file from my download central page. The filename to download is demopak.zip. The instructions for installing and using these demos are included with the demos (readme.txt), but they bear repeating here. Note that in these instructions I assume you are using WinZip.

Note
If you don't know how to unzip "zip" files then I reccomend you go download and install WinZip (www.winzip.com). WinZip is a great shareware program that lets you easily unzip zipped files in a friendly windows interface.
  1. Start Windows Explorer and navigate to the folder you downloaded the file to.
  2. Double click on the zip file (demopak.zip) and extract its contents to your Quake 2 directory, as shown below:
    WinZip screenshot
    Make sure that the option "Use Folder Names" is checked before you click "Extract"
  3. Make note of the names of each demo. You may want to write them down on a scratch piece of paper.
  4. Start Quake 2
  5. At the console type this command to play the demo:
    demomap demoname.dm2 (so to run the demo rjump.dm2 we would type "demomap rjump.dm2")

That's the basics of cheating and demos. Use them all to practice the skills you'll be learning in the rest of this tutorial. Speaking of skills, let's cover the basic tactics of Quake 2 deathmatch. Click the "Next" link below to continue.

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.

Part 1 - Quake 2 Weapons

There's nothing like the feeling when you've granulated some unfortunate opponent with a shotgun blast to the head, or when you turn a fellow fragger into bloody chunks with a well placed rocket. Of course I'm sure psychiatrists would have something to say about this, but who cares what they think! In any event, here's all the weapons available for your deathmatch fun and how best to use them.


Blaster
The most basic weapon in Quake 2. Not very powerful, but it has it's place. After all one shot from this trusty guy can take down any severely battered (i.e. low health) opponent no matter what weapon he has. Another one of my favorite tactics (as I mentioned before) is to jump on top of an opponent and then blast away at his head. It sounds crazy but it's worked before! In general though if all you have is the blaster then you need to find some more powerful weaponry pronto.

Shotgun
Better than the blaster (in power respects), but the super shotgun is even better.

Super Shotgun
Also known as the double-barreled shotgun. The super shotgun is a favorite of expert deathmatchers everywhere. Although it's not as powerful at long ranges, a close up blast to another player will ensure instant death. The super shotgun should always be in your arsenal.

Hand Grenades
Personally I think these are of little use most of the time; because of the time required to actually throw one it doesn't make them very effective. However I'd be lying if I said I've never been killed by a well tossed hand grenade. Usually the grenade launcher is more preferable if you're going to be using grenades.

Machine Gun
One of my favorite weapons! The machine gun is a good all purpose gun. Well rounded in power, shot rate, and range - the machine gun doesn't really have any significant flaws. One exception is its kickback which can make steady aiming hard. However with the standard mouse and keyboard control and freelook turned on this shouldn't be a big problem.

Chain Gun
Powerful is the only word to describe this bad boy. The chain guns chews up ammo as fast as it chews up bad guys so watch your ammo level. Generally this is best for mowing down large crowds, but don't be afraid to use it in a one on one duel.

Grenade Launcher
I like using the grenade launcher for two things. One is lobbing grenades into large crowds of people when I'm above them on a ledge. The second is for quick kills of enemies at medium or close range. The only danger from this is the harm close range explosions do to your health.

Rocket Launcher
Ahhh, the weapon of choice in original Quake multiplayer is not quite as dominating in Quake 2 multiplayer. Still it remains a vicious component in the weapons collection of any player. The rocket launcher should be used primarily for long and medium range attacks. Close quarter killings with the launcher are possible but more than likely you'll take a severe hit to the health.

Note
If you accidentally kill yourself with your own rocket or grenade in a deathmatch the computer deducts one frag from you (for "killing yourself"). You also loose frags for drowning, burning up in lava, or dying in radioactive sludge.

Hyperblaster
Probably my favorite implement of destruction for Quake 2 deathmatches. The Quake 2 manual describes it as an "energy chain gun with no spin up delay." So this gun is useful in just about every situation. Like its counterpart the chain gun, it will eat up ammo rather quickly though.

Railgun
Do you remember the Arnold Schwarzeneger movie "Eraser?" (that's okay, you don’t have to admit you saw it). Well in that flick you might recall seeing Ahnold use this big boy. The rail gun fires uranium slugs at super high velocities (the speed of sound) so just about anything you hit is going to die. This is the gun of choice for many players but I feel it's not quite as effective as it should be. First the reload rate is slow which can cost you dearly in a heated duel. Also I've noticed that many times even close up hits aren't always enough to do an opponent in. Still I can't deny the power of this weapon; just use it intelligently.

BFG
Gun doesn't do this piece of machinery justice. When everything has to die right now use the BFG. The BFG is really only effective when you're able to fire her off in an enclosed room full of people (that's a good way to get lots of frags quick). For everything else it's too slow and cumbersome.

Armor/Powerups
No they aren't weapons, but snatching up as much health and armor you can get your hands on is prudent in any PC game. Especially in Quake 2 deathmatch, where you're going to get shot… a lot.


That's all for weapons right now. Let's move on to the more technical side of things and learn how Quake 2 servers work. Click the link below to continue.

Part 1 - How Quake 2 Servers Work

When you’re working on your PC at the office, or in your favorite computer laboratory at school, you’re PC is most likely connected to a server. A server is just a computer that is dedicated to running applications across several terminals (or PC’s). Playing Quake 2 over the Internet works on the same principle. A server somewhere is running Quake 2 and is connected to the Internet (the server is called the host). Several players with PC’s are also running Quake 2 and are connected to the Internet (these players are called clients). The clients then connect to the host which gives them a central place to play Quake 2. The only real difference is that Quake 2 servers are usually some distance away from the clients. In a computer lab or office environment the server is usually in the same building. In Quake 2 it may be down the street or all the way in Fargo, North Dakota!

As a client (player) you don’t really have to get into all the details of running Quake 2 servers. Just know that other people run them and it’s a good thing they do because they provide a place for you and your buds to shoot it up!


We’re creeping ever closer to actually playing a game of deathmatch so bear with me as we cover a few last topics in Part 1. Click the "Next" link below to move closer to that goal.

Part 1 - Player Profile & Quake 2 Versions

Before we actually get you onto a Quake 2 server and fraggin away we need to make sure you’ve got the player profile you want and that you’re using the correct version of Quake 2. First the player profile.


PLAYER PROFILE
This really isn’t that critical as you think. You can enter a Quake 2 deathmatch without setting up your profile; the computer will just use a default profile. Part of the fun is creating a deathmatch personae though. Here’s how you set this up.

Start up Quake 2 and go to the main menu. Move the arrow down to Multiplayer and hit enter. Another screen pops up with more selections. Select Player Setup. From this screen we can now setup the player. Here’s what the options mean:

Name
This is where you can choose your name, or "handle" that other players will see in the game. This is the funnest part of creating your Quake 2 personae. Be creative and have fun with it. You may want to avoid vulgar or obscene names, but it’s a free country so do what you want. It’s also probably best if you didn’t use your real name, for obvious reasons.

Model
In the original Quake all of the players essentially looked the same - a plain, non-descrip male whose only outstanding features were the color of his pants and shirt. Now you can be either a male, female (yes, there are a significant amount of female Quake players), or a cyborg. The model you choose won’t have any effect on your abilities in the actual game.

Skin
There are several variations on the appearance of the males, females, and cyborgs in Quake 2. Cycle through the various selections until you have a player you like the look of. This is how you will appear to other players.

Handedness
Are you a left, righty, or prefer no hands? Handedness simply refers to the position your hand (holding the weapon) will take on the screen. You can have the default right, the left, or the center which is no hands showing at all.


QUAKE 2 VERSIONS
Software, like automobiles, have various versions (or model years in car terms). For instance, Windows 95 is different from Windows 98 just like a 90 Chevy Lumina is different from a 94 Chevy Lumina.

If you purchased Quake 2 close to when it was originally released (Christmas ‘97) you most likely have version 3.05.

Quick Tip
You can tell what version of Quake 2 you have by starting Quake 2 and bringing down the console (hit the tilde key (~). The console will then appear. In the lower right corner of the console is the version number.

The majority of Quake 2 servers out there are going to be using the most current version of Quake 2 however. Chances are more than likely that your version is not the most current so an upgrade will be in order.

You can get the latest upgrade patch to Quake 2 by visiting my Download Central page. From there I have links to many different sites that have the most current patch on them. Download it to your computer and then run it. Once the program is done your copy of Quake 2 will be patched to version the newest version.

Note
When you upgrade your version of Quake 2 to a newer version any saved games you made under the previous version cannot be used in the new version.

That's it for Part 1! Click the "Next" link below to begin Part 2 - where you will play your first deathmatch!!

Part 2 - Gamespy Introduction

WHAT IS GAMESPY?
So far I’ve discussed what deathmatch is and how it works (on Quake 2 servers). However I have not told you how to actually connect to a Quake 2 server. If you read the information that is included with Quake 2 they give you some rudimentary information on how to connect. To do it their way you first have to find some IP addresses of Quake 2 servers (e.g. 145.453.234.23), enter them in, connect, and pray that you’re connection is fast enough to play. There has to be an easier way to do that though, and lucky for us there is.

Click me for a full screen shot of Gamespy Gamespy (previously called "Qspy") is a Windows 95 program that goes out and automatically searches for as many Quake 2 (and other 3D shooter game) servers it can find and then returns with a list of them. The servers are sorted by fastest to slowest relative to your location. Simply locate a fast server, double click on it, and Gamespy automatically runs Quake 2, connects to that server, and launches your game! Now that is easy!!

Even better, the program is shareware which means you can use it for free!!! The makers do accept registration of the program however (for a nominal fee), and registration lets you use some of the more powerful features of Gamespy like chat. However if you just want to use it for locating servers and launching games then you can do that for free.


DOWNLOADING GAMESPY
Before you download Gamepsy make sure that you have the latest version of Quake 2. I discussed this in Part 1. After that you’re ready to go get Gamespy. The links for downloading the most current version of Gamespy are on my Download Central page.

Once you’ve downloaded Gamespy run the program and it will install itself. The installation and setup program is very easy to use. They walk you through it nice and easy so you shouldn’t have any trouble. When the program is finished installing, run it. The first time you run Gamespy it will have you setup a few things. Don’t worry, it leads you through this part as well as it lead you through the installation process.


Now that you’ve got Gamespy, let’s figure out how to use it! Click the "Next" link below to go to the next page.

Part 2 - Using Gamespy: The Basics

THE BASICS - CONNECTING TO A SERVER!
Well, you've spent all this time learning the basics to deathmatch but you have yet to actually connect to a server and start playing!!! Congratulations because your patience is about to pay off! Just follow these steps to begin your first deathmatch!

  1. If you haven't already, start Gamespy.
      
  2. When you first start Gamespy a couple windows popup. The first is just a little nag screen that reminds you of the fact that you can register Gamespy if you want (and why not, it's a great program!). Just click Continue to proceed.
      
  3. The next screen is called the player profile screen. This is where you can choose which player name you want to play with. If you haven't created a name yet click the New button.

      
  4. The next window that appears is the Modify player settings screen. First, enter a name for your player in the Player Name field. Below that is the Change settings for box. Select "Quake 2" as your game. Once you've selected that more options become available. Don't worry about the CFG file thing right now, you'll learn more about those later. Just select a Player model (male, female, cyborg), a Player skin (Gamespy will let you look at the skins before you choose), and the Handedness which is the location of your gun target: right, left, or center. When you're done click the OK button.
    gamespy_modify_player_settings.gif (13114 bytes)

      
  5. We are now at the main interface window for Gamespy. On the far left side of the window is a column of buttons with names like "Quake2." These are source buttons. Selecting them tells Gamespy what kind of servers you want to search for. Since we want Quake 2 servers click the Quake2 source button. Make sure that "Quake 2" is the only source button selected (you can tell a source is selected because all the source buttons under that "Quake 2" button turn white).

    You may notice the little briefcase icon gamespy_briefcase.gif (876 bytes) next to the "Quake2" source button. Note that for all the Quake2 servers to be selected that arrow on that briefcase icon should always be pointing down. If it's pointing to the right that means the Quake2 source has been deselcted and Gamespy won't look for any Quake2 servers.
      
  6. Now that we've told Gamespy we're looking for Quake 2 servers we need to tell it to go out and find these servers. Click the Update from current source button on the toolbar (as pictured below). Gamespy will then contact several other servers which maintain lists of Quake 2 servers. After downloading the most current server lists it will go out and "ping" each of these servers. This process can take a minute or two so be patient (now would be a good time to go grab a caffeinated beverage).

      
  7. When Gamespy is done "pinging" servers you will be presented with a list of all the Quake 2 servers it pinged. They are listed from top to bottom in order of fastest to slowest. Look at the ping times for each of the servers - they're right next to the server name. Try to find the smallest ping time you can. Pings over 400 aren't very playable, the 300's are playable but can be jumpy at times, and anything above that is typically smooth. Find a server that isn't empty, or full, and has a low ping number. Double click on the name of that server and Gamespy will launch your Quake 2 deathmatch game!!
Note
Well I'll be saying goodbye for a few hours now, because you're likely going to be having too much fun on those deathmatch servers playing Quake 2 to worry about this tutorial! When you do manage to wrestle yourself away from the fray join me back on this page and we'll continue!

If you have any trouble trying to connect to a server read the information down below.


WHAT TO EXPECT NEXT
Now if everything has gone okay up to this point you should be well into your first deathmatch! However in some cases things go haywire and for a variety of technical (and some non-technical) reasons you may not have been able to connect to a server. Before you shoot the monitor, or worse yet curse my name, check out the help page. It answers several common technical questions I get and has a link to Gamespy's troubleshooting web site.


Click below to continue on in the tutorial. Lag and ping is our next topic.

Part 2 - Lag And Ping

LAG
Like death and taxes, lag is a fact of life when you're playing games over the Internet. You may have already noticed lag when playing your first games of deathmatch. For example, perhaps when you pressed the fire button it took a second or two for the gun to actually fire. Or in a crowded firefight things started to get jerky and slow. These are all examples of lag.

Of course the big question on everyone's mind is "how do you eliminate or decrease lag?" The answer, unfortunately, is complicated and never the same for each players. However there are some general tips we can cover.

Check Your Internet Connection
Do you have a poor quality phone line, or noise over your phone line? This could be affecting your connection to your ISP, and therefore the quality of your connection to a Quake 2 server.

What's your modem speed?
Remember that you need at least a 28.8 to play Quake 2 over the Internet. The faster your modem the better. With the new 56k ITU standard, 56k access should be expanded greatly (although 56k is already available in most major cities).

How's Your ISP Quality?
We said before that on-line services like AOL and Compuserve don't cut it for playing Quake 2 over the Internet. That doesn't mean just because you have a real ISP account you're going to get superior service. If you frequently get dropped from your ISP or have so-so connection speeds it may be time to look for a new one.

How's your PC speed?
Although your PC's performance (with the exception of the modem) doesn't directly affect your connection rate, it can pose problems in deathmatch games. For instance my PC is a P166 with 16 megs of ram and a Voodoo Graphics accelerator (Monster 3D). When I play Quake 2 I get occasional pauses in the gameplay (I need more ram!). This doesn't cause many problems when I play the computer - because when I pause the computer pauses. However during multiplayer games this is not the case. Just because I have the occasional glitch that doesn't mean everyone else did. Making sure that Quake 2 is optimized for your system can translate into better deathmatch scores.


PING
You can think of ping as nothing more than a gauge of your lag. When we use Gamespy we're always looking for the server with the lowest ping. The lower the ping the better the speed. Here's the rundown on what different ping values mean:

Ping What It Means

99 - 0 If you've got zero you're most likely on the actual server
199 - 100 You have a pretty darn smooth connection, you lucky bastard
299 - 200 Still pretty smooth, but you will get the occasional lag
399 - 300 More lag, but still very playable (average for 28.8 users is 350 - 250)
400 - and up Ugh, slower than Clinton thinks, avoid any pings above this level.

It's very easy to find the ping of a Quake 2 server with Gamespy, but how do you do it when you're in the actual game? Easy, just press F1 anytime in a Quake 2 multiplayer game and a screen with the lists of every player on the server and their pings will be shown.


SPEED ISSUES AND QUAKE 2
The ability to play 3D shooters over the Internet revolutionized the industry almost as much as 3D games themselves (some would say even more). Of course since we really are at the birth of this medium we have to expect a few bumps. Primarily those bumps are lag.

Currently lag is a fact of life in Internet games. There's no real way to get around it for the average modem based 28.8 user. Just wait patiently for the day when super fast cable modems (actually it could be a number of standards like satellite and ADSL) become the norm and we can all laugh at those "old days" of Internet gaming.

Don't let me give you the impression that playing Quake 2 over a plain old modem is going to be impossibly slow. If it wasn't playable people wouldn't be doing it. Just remember that it isn't perfect and you shouldn't cry when you get fragged because of lag.


Now let's continue on and get in-depth with Gamespy! Click the "Next" link below to continue.

Part 2 - More Gamespy

If for some reason you've skipped ahead and don't yet know how to perform the basic function of Gamespy - finding and connecting to a server - then read the basics of Gamespy

REFRESHING/UPDATING THE SERVERS
Quake 2 servers are popping up over the Internet daily, so you should be sure to update your Quake 2 server lists every time you start Gamespy. You can do this either manually or have Gamespy do it automatically (I do it manually).

Manually
Right click on the "Quake 2" source button and then click update (see the screenshot below). Gamespy will then go out and retrieve all the latest Quake 2 server lists. Once that's done it will then ping all the servers.

Update Q2 Servers

Automatically
From the Tools menu select Options. Check the option labeled Do refreshes on startup...  I would recommend choosing either Refresh all servers - which will refresh all the servers you last had pinged again, or Refresh favorites - which will ping the servers in your favorites folder. The only drawback to these two methods is that they don't check the source servers for new Quake 2 servers. You can do this by checking Update and refresh all servers and sources. However I would recommend you don't do this because this will not only ping the entire Quake2 source, but any other sources you may have (Quake, Hexen, Unreal, etc.). As you can imagine this would be a rather length process. But hey, if you start Gamespy and go grab a quick sandwich you should have all the up-to-date servers when you come back.

Refresh Visible Servers
When you've updated the Quake 2 server list once you shouldn't do have to do it again for a few hours or a day. However you may want to ping the servers in the current list several times. This helps keep the ping times up to date. Doing this takes two steps. Make sure that the All Servers tab at the top of interface is clicked (this can actually be any tab you want, but All Servers is usually the best). This will display all the Quake 2 servers Gamespy pinged previously. Then press Ctrl-T (this is the shortcut key for the Gamespy - Refresh Visible List command). Gamespy will then ping all the servers in the visible list.


SORTING YOUR LISTS
You've probably noticed all those buttons across the top of the Gamespy interface that have names like "Passed Filters", "All Servers", "Favorites", etc. These are for sorting out the server lists. This is useful because you don't always want to look at every server Gamespy pinged.

When you click "Passed Filters", for example, Gamespy will only show those servers that meet certain filter criteria. We will set that up right now.

BASIC FILTERING
Gamespy has many powerful features. One of those lets you specify certain rules that servers must comply with to be displayed under the "Passed Filters" tab. Let's setup a basic filter right now that everyone should be using:

  1. From the Gamespy menu select Games and Filters
  2. Click Quake2 filter settings...
  3. Click the Filter Wizard button.
  4. Check the Refreshed in less than… box.
  5. In the box that says milliseconds enter the amount 400.
  6. Click Ok and then Ok again. Now every time you select the "Passed Filter" button Gamespy will only show those servers that had a ping higher than 400!

CUSTOM TABS
Later on you are going to learn about special versions of Quake 2 called "mods." These mods add a new level of fun to multiplayer Quake 2 by providing exciting variations on standard deathmatch play. But how do you know what servers are running these modified versions of Quake 2?

Lucky for us the folks at Gamespy - and other people on the Internet - make special tabs that will let you list those specific types of Quake 2 games you're looking for. When you download a custom tab (e.g. ctf.qst) you need a way of importing it into Gamespy. Here's how you do that:

  1. From the View menu select Custom tabs.
  2. From the sub-menu that pops up click Import.
  3. Locate the custom tab file on your hard drive, click on it once to select it, and then click Open.
  4. After you've done that a new button will appear near the other tabs with the name of the type of game it will list (e.g. CTF II).
Note
Right now knowing how to import custom tabs isn't important because we don't know what mods are. However later on we will be working with mods and knowing how to import custom tabs will be important.

PLAYER INFORMATION BOX
The player information box is located underneath the server list box. It lets you see what players are on a selected server and what their ping and scores are, and more.


GAME RULES BOX
The game rules box is also underneath the server list box, to the right. It displays information about a selected server. This is usually for determining what version of Quake 2, or any specific mods, the server may be running.


CHANGING PLAYER PROFILES
Gamespy player profile buttonAt any time when you're using Gamespy you may switch the player you're using with a different one. This is useful not only for changing names, but also - as we will see later - for using different configuration files with different player names.

Just click the player profile button located on the main toolbar. This will bring up the player profile screen that you normally see every time Gamespy is started.


BUDDY LISTS
Buddy ListsIf you've got friends who play Quake 2 over the Internet you can have Gamespy automatically search for their player name (or "handle" as it's also known) while it's pinging servers. Gamespy will then indicate that the player name(s) you specified have been located on a particular server by placing colored dots next to the server name. Note that the unregistered version of Gamespy only lets you look for one name automatically.

  1. On the main toolbar click the Buddy List button. The buddy list button then appears
  2. In the name contains: box type the name (or part of the name) of the player you want Gamespy to look for.
  3. Click the Add button and then click OK.

FINDING PLAYERS
You can also manually use Gamespy to locate player names by searching servers. Press the F4 button and that will bring up the following dialog box:

What follows is a description of each of this dialog's features:

  1. Player - Enter the name of the player you wish to search for here. The names you enter are called search parameters.
  2. Re-receive player lists… - This essentially makes the search more accurate by re-checking servers to make sure the player you're looking for is still on that server. It does make the search slower though.
  3. Do a substring search - Finds any occurrence of your search parameters in a player name. For example, suppose you had entered "Death" as the player name you're searching for. Gamespy would return with every name that either was "death" or included the word "death."
  4. Match whole string only - Tells Gamespy that you want to only locate the exact name you entered, no exceptions.
  5. Search beginning of names - Matches names starting from the beginning of a player name.
  6. Check selected server - Gamespy will only look for your search parameters on a particular server: the one you select that is.
  7. Check entire visible list - Gamespy will search every server on the current list for the name you entered. To check all Quake 2 servers make sure the All Servers tab is clicked.
  8. Re-Query servers with no response - Does what it says. It re-queries servers that are marked as not having responded when Gamespy last checked them.

So basically all you have to do is enter the name you're looking for and click Find Now. Gamespy will then search the specified Quake 2 servers for the player you're looking for.

Well that's it for Gamespy right now. Of course that is by no means all there is to Gamespy. I'm primarily concerned with just getting you comfortable using the basic functions of Gamespy. Explore around you'll discover many more things you can do.


So with that we've reached the end of Part 2. By now you should be fairly adept at finding, and playing, deathmatch games at a beginner level. Now we'll push the envelope a little more and ratchet your skills up a bit! Click the "Next" link below to travel to Part 3!

Part 3 - Intermediate & Advanced Deathmatch

By this point you should be able to call yourself, with some degree of confidence, a solid beginner at deathmatch games. Hey, you may not be the best at every given game (or any given game) but you do get some kills in. More importantly you've been practicing at running, strafing, jumping, and using the mouse and keyboard to hone your deathmatch skills.

Part 3 is meant to further develop those skills by showing you some of the more unique, and challenging, tricks of the trade when it comes to deathmatch and Quake 2 multiplayer in general.


THE CIRCLE (CIRCLE STRAFING)
Widely considered a fundamental multiplay tactic, circle strafing allows you to essentially run circles around an enemy while still maintaining an accurate target on him. If done properly, this move will disorient your opponent and make him an easier kill for you.

Learning this move takes a little practice, but as you will see it is well worth the time. First you'll need an open area to practice it in. Large pillars are good structures to practice circle strafing on (there are lots of pillars in map base2). Once you've found a pillar aim a weapon at a certain spot on the pillar. Now, start circle strafing around the pillar by holding down one of the strafe keys while moving the mouse in the opposite direction. So if I was holding down the strafe left key I would be moving the mouse right, and vice versa.

Another key to successful circle strafing is using the move forward and backwards keys in combination with your strafing and mouse movement. By moving forward and back while circle strafing you can avoid becoming hung up on obstacles that may be nearby. It's also useful when circle strafing in confined areas.

Of course circle strafing works best when you're shooting at a stationary object, like a pillar. In deathmatch however your opponent won't be standing still for you! But that doesn't depreciate the value of circle strafing. Just getting a few hits on an opponent while at the same time moving to the back of him, or outside is field of vision, can be an immense help. It's also useful to strafe around corners so you can quickly determine if anyone is hiding there, waiting to pop you one.


ROCKET JUMP
A fun little technique, rocket jumping is used to propel yourself up onto ledges or platforms that are normally unreachable by conventional means, or that take too long to reach by walking. It's primarily useful in deathmatch for performing quick escapes form superior opponents.

The basic rocket jump is easy. You aim your rocket launcher at the floor by looking down at the floor as far as you can. Next you hit the jump key and then, as quickly as possible, you hit the fire key. This will propel your character straight up in the air a considerable distance. You can see a demo example of a rocket jump by downloading my demo pak at Download Central. The rocket jump demo is called "rjump.dm2." Be sure you've read the cheats and demo page for information on how to install and run the demo.

Getting where you want to go
A rocket jump is only useful if you can get somewhere above you (like a platform) by using it. Propelling yourself straight up in the air generally does you no good. When you're rocket jumping in Quake 2 you can't change the direction you go in midair, so you'll have to make sure you're pointing in the direction you want to go before rocket jumping.

Speed
You can usually get a better rocket jump by taking a running start at the time you perform your rocket jump. This does make it more difficult to set up your jump and land precisely where you want.

Health Impact
A rocket jump will, of course, take some health off your player when you perform it. So if you're player is near death it may not be a good idea to use the rocket jump.

Grenade Jumps
You need not use only a rocket to perform a rocket jump. Any explosion will propel you into the air. For instance, you could throw a grenade on the floor, stand on it, and jump right at the moment of explosion. Even better, you could stand on the grenade and fire a rocket at the floor and jump just when the grenade explodes! That will really catch you some air (but will also impact your health more).


LADDER TRICKS
Believe it or not, ladders can be used to your advantage in deathmatches. The trick is knowing when, and how, to use the ladder effectively.

Ladder Limits
One important note about using the latter. You can't turn your player more than 90 degrees without falling off the ladder. This can make it rather difficult to do any kind of fighting when you're on the ladder, but there are good tactics you can still use.

Quick Shot
If you're being chased up a ladder there's a good way to take quick pot shots at your pursuer while still maintaining a hold on the ladder. First, quickly look down at your opponent and fire. This will cause you to fall. Turn around quickly so that you're facing the ladder again and your player will grab the ladder (this is where mouse control really comes in handy). If you've done this quickly enough you won't have slipped down the ladder much.

Be Sneaky
This tactic is a hoot when you pull it off. Usually when you're being chased and there's a ladder nearby you just jump down the ladder chute to the bottom and keep on running. Try this next time. Jump down like normal, but halfway down grab hold of the ladder and wait. Your opponent will jump all the way down the ladder - thinking you did as well - and go right past you! At this point your can either jump on top of his head and blast him to pieces, or make a quick getaway up the ladder. Fun, huh?

Keep Your Head Up!
When you're climbing up a ladder, always be looking at the top of the ladder as you climb! This way you can spot any would-be snipers looking to blow your head off.

Play It Safe
If you're the very cautious kind it may be a good idea to lob a grenade down any ladders you encounter before you head on down them. So anyone coming up the ladder will get a rude awakening :-)


JUMPING
People jump like crazy in Quake 2 deathmatches for good reason; it works. Jumping around sporadically is a good way to throw off the aim of other players. In combination with strafing, the random jump becomes even more effective.

The main thing to remember is that you should not develop any pattern to your jumps. When you jump in Quake 2 the other players can hear it. If you jump with a pattern they will soon pick up on the audible cues of this pattern. That allows them to time your jumps and the whole purpose of jumping - to throw off your opponent's aim - is down the toilet.


DODGING
When fire fights get hairy, dodging becomes very critical. If you can't move out of your opponents line of fire you're pretty much dead (obviously).

Use obstacles
Use the environment in Quake 2 to your advantage when dodging. Use crates and walls to hide from incoming fire. You can then strafe out from behind the obstacle, fire at the opponent, and strafe back behind the obstacle for cover. Use this tactic as much as possible.

Dodge rockets
Rockets can be deadly, but not if they don't hit you (of course). If a rocket's been fired at you strafe left or right to avoid it. If you've got a good short range gun like the double barreled shotgun or hyperblaster you can charge the person who fired the rocket; at the same time dodging their rockets while you're blasting them.


WAVES
Waves won't help you get any more kills in a deathmatch, but they are lots of fun! Waves are essentially gestures you can make to other players in the game. They include a salute, taunt, wave (like waving hello), and the ever popular flipoff. By default Quake 2 assigns each of the waves to the following keys:

Flipoff H
Salute J
Taunt K
Wave L

Press each key to perform the wave. You will recieve a message that tells you what wave you just performed. Just be careful not to flipoff teamates in team games!


Expert tactics are only part of the game when it comes to deathmatch. Click the "Next" link below for the next page in the tutorial - "Playing Smart".

Part 3 - Play Smart

Being a successful deathmatcher isn't all about reflexes and who can click the fire button fastest. Strategy, using your mind, is just as important. In my opinion a player who can out think another player is just as deadly as one with killer aim, super accurate precision, and low ping.


It's how they got Lincoln…
Although there are unofficial rules in deathmatch against things like camping, they don't necessarily apply to "cheap" kills - like shooting someone in the back. In fact, you're top priority in any deathmatch should be to get in back of your opponents!

While it may not be very honorable it's a hell of a good way to rack up some frags. There are many different ways to get in back of someone. In many cases you'll just turn a corner and someone will be standing there with his back to you. Unload a railgun slug into that poor fellow pronto!

Another good technique is to jump over an opponent, whip around quickly, and deliver him a devastating barrage of backfire. Getting the timing and leverage you'll need to jump over someone can take practice, but it's worth the time and effort.

If you're going to jump off a ledge to meet an opponent who's below, be sure to jump behind him and not in front of him!

Stupid, but it works
Have you ever been watching a movie where the hero escapes a chase by quickly ducking into a side hall or behind a wall while his pursuers blindly run by? It sounds stupid and clichéd but in Quake 2 I've seen it work wonders.

Generally when people are chasing you they expect you to keep running. Turn the tables on them and don't run! Duck behind a wall, quickly wing around and start spraying them with machine-gun fire, or just run back the direction you came!

Fun with teleporters
This is another good tactic for out maneuvering any enemies chasing you. First make sure you have a second or two lead time ahead of them. Next, when you jump through a teleporter and reach the destination spot, quickly turn around so you're facing the teleport pad. If you're opponent follows he should quickly teleport in. Blast him when he appears!

Always be thinking
Keep your eyes out for possible escapes or traps you can lead opponents into. Brute force is only part of the game when it comes to good deathmatching. Be alert and smart, and you just might come out on top!


Now that you can play smart, it's time to look into getting some deathmatch practice, without a modem...

Part 3 - Eraser bot

In the first part of this tutorial I talked about how important it is to practice deathmatch tactics off-line on your own, as well as on-line. It would be great if Quake 2 would let you play computer controlled deathmatch opponents. The Eraser bot - a Quake 2 addon - lets you do just that!

Of course nothing can ever replace playing those real, human opponents; but the Eraser bot comes as close to simulating that as anything can. So you can fine tune your deathmatch skills, have fun, and not worry about lag (except for computer-power lag) all at the same time!


DOWNLOADING THE BOT
The first step to using the Eraser is obtaining it - obviously. You can find the download links to the bot at the Impact Development team homepage - http://impact.frag.com
This link is also on the Download Central page if you forget it and need a reminder.

The Eraser bot is updated frequently so all the patches that are listed on their site can make knowing what to download confusing. First, make sure you download the most recent full installer. It should be a larger file and will not have the word patch in it. Download that file first, taking notice of the version number (e.g. 0.85). Then check to see if there is a patch with a higher version number. If there is go ahead and download that patch as well.

After you've finished all that downloading you can install Eraser. Make sure you install the main install download first (installing a patch first wouldn't be good). After you've installed the Eraser bot go ahead and install any patch.


USING THE BOT
If you read the readme.txt that comes with Eraser (as you should) you will get instruction on how to use the command line and console commands to run the bot. This really isn't that hard to do… but there is an easier way: Hot Launch!

Hot Launch is a Windows 95 front end for Eraser. A front end is just a program that puts a nice user friendly interface (like Windows) over another not so friendly interface (like typing commands). So instead of typing in all the commands to run Eraser you just click all the settings you want in Hot Launch and then select "Launch"!


GETTING HOT LAUNCH
You can find the download links to Hot Launch at their site - http://www.planetquake.com/hotlaunch
From there you can download the main install file and any patches that might be available. After you've downloaded it, install and patch as necessary.


RUNNING HOT LAUNCH
Hot Launch is a very self-explanatory program that is easy to use. I'll cover just the very basics and let you explore the rest.

Click here for a full screen shot of Hot LaunchBots
The option tab you will be primarily concerned with is the bots tab. From here you can control how many bots (computer controlled opponents) you play against, what kind of bots are playing, their skill, and you can edit existing bots or create bots of your own.

Spawn Specific Bots
This option allows you to play against a particular bot. You could play against "Cartman" for example. This is very useful for playing against bots you can create yourself.

Spawn Random Bots
This randomly generates a specific number of bots (set by you) on any map you decide to play.

Bot Skill
Self-explanatory. Difficulty ranges from "Easy" to "Nightmare."

Edit Bot Profiles
Clicking this button pops up a new screen that allows you to edit the characteristics of existing bots, or create new bots of your own to be placed in the pool of default bots.

To edit a bot select its name and click Edit Bot. This allows you change attributes like their accuracy, aggressiveness, skin, and even ping. When you're done click Commit Changes.

To create a new bot click New Bot. The first screen that appears lets you name the bot. Type in a name and click Add Bot. Your bot is now created and given default attributes. To edit your bot just click Edit Bot and change the attributes to reflect how you want the bot to behave.

Edit Bot Chat
Clicking this button will take you to the "Bot Chatter Editor." This screen lets you edit, or create, messages the bots send you during deathmatches. It's very easy to use. Simply select the category of chat you want to edit (e.g. Insults [general]) and then click Add to enter in your own chat messages!

One Note: You may notice some chat messages look funny, for example - Better run %s... my lag is letting up. What does that %s thing mean? It's basically just a command that says place the name of a player here. So if the bot was talking to another bot named Cartman it would say - Better run Cartman... my lag is letting up. So if you want to create a chat message that uses a player's name be sure to use the %s in its place.

Maps
From this tab you can set the map you will play deathmatch on. They can be either the internal Quake 2 maps, a custom made map, or the CTF maps. The nice thing about Eraser is you can use it with any level. The bots have the ability to dynamically learn the level - they get smarter as they play more. This means, however, that it will take a few minutes for them to "smarten up" when they're playing on a new map.

Edit Map Cycle
Clicking this button takes you to the "Edit Map Cycle" window. From here you can change the order and which maps are loaded as you play. For example, suppose you have set a frag limit of 20, meaning after 20 frags are reached a new map loads. It is here that you can define which map to load next. So if you wanted to have the deathmatch maps q2dm1 through q2dm8 load sequentially in this fashion you would Add>> the first map, then the second, and so on.

Teamplay
The Eraser bot also lets you play in teams with other bots against and enemy bot team. All you have to do is check the Teamplay box, select the team you want to play on and team you want to play against. Then enter the maximum number of players allowed on each team.

Gameplay
From this tab you can set two types or settings: General and Server. The general settings are basically the gameplay settings (I won't cover all of them because there are so many and they are fairly self-explanatory). The default settings are usually best; I prefer to check Weapons Stay so that weapons will remain even when they are picked up (it helps keep things more fair).

The server settings let you set the Time Limit (how long the map will be aloud to run until changing to the next), the Frag Limit (the max number of frags allowed until the map changes), and set the Client Latency (you should generally leave this at 1 which is no lag). Another setting you may be curious about is Bot Dynamic Node Calculation. All this basically does is continually force the bots to keep "learning" a level, even after they've been playing on it for a while. Un-selecting it should give you a little speed increase in the game.

Play around with Hot Launch and see what kind of fun games you can setup. Just remember that when you're ready to launch your game all you have to do is press Ctrl-L or click go.


CTF AND HOT LAUNCH
On the Maps tab of Hot Launch you may have noticed that there is an option to play the CTF maps with the Eraser bot. If you tried to play those maps however you may have gotten an error message. Why is Eraser doing that?

The reason for that error is because a certain file that the Eraser bot needs to play CTF is not in the Eraser folder. The good news is you can put that file in their yourself. Just go to the "ctf" folder in your Quake 2 directory (Note that you must have Quake 2 CTF to use Eraser with CTF) and locate a file called pak0.pak. Copy the file into the "eraser" folder also in your Quake 2 directory. Now try and launch a CTF game from Hot Launch. You should have no trouble playing CTF with Eraser now.


That's all for Part 3. Click the "Next" link below to begin some really fun stuff - the Quake 2 console...

Part 4 - The Console

The console in Quake and Quake 2 is almost as innovative an idea as the Quake engine itself. The console acts as a conduit for the user to interact with the game. Aesthetically it's a lot like command line operating systems such as DOS and UNIX. There is a prompt and the user types in commands for the console to perform.

The console is of special interest to deathmatch players because of the new levels of customization it brings to the game. Every good deathmatcher has their copy of Quake 2 customized to their personal specifications. A good configuration helps bring that extra (and fair) advantage newer and experienced players alike crave for.


USING THE CONSOLE
Before we begin I should take the time to make sure you know how to access the console in Quake 2 and type commands in. If you've been reading this tutorial all the way through you should already know how to do this; but it doesn't hurt to cover it again.

To bring up the console anytime you're in Quake 2, simply hit the tilde key (~). The tilde key is the little squiggle key in the upper left hand corner of the keyboard located to the left of the "1" key and just under the escape key.

After you've hit the tilde key, the console appears. It's quite obvious when it does. It looks like a brown box with a flashing prompt. Now you're ready to enter commands. Just to see the console actually do something type the word version into the console and hit enter. The full version of your copy of Quake 2 will then be displayed. This is a very simplistic command, but it illustrates - at a very basic level - what the console does. It interacts with the user, but instead of clicking buttons to make it do things you type commands.


CONFIGURATION FILES
Quake 2 is probably one of the most (if not the most) highly customizable games on the market today. Configuration files help allow that level of user customization.

Basically, a configuration file is nothing more than a text file with a bunch, or a few, console commands in them. Quake 2 can load these configuration files and execute all the console commands that are in them. You probably already see the advantage to configuration files (or configs and CFGs as they are also known). Instead of having to type a bunch of console commands every time you play Quake 2 you can just type them once into a configuration file and have Quake 2 load them every time you play!

To get a look at a Quake 2 configuration file open up the Windows Explorer and navigate to the "baseq2" folder in your "Quake2" folder. Inside the baseq2 folder is a file called "config.cfg." Double click on the file and it should open up in Notepad. What you're seeing is just one huge list of console commands. Quake 2 loads this particular one automatically every time it starts. Right now none of these console commands mean anything to you (but we'll soon change that). Quit Notepad and be sure you don't save any changes made to this file.

Quick Tip
Remember for your configuration files to work they must be placed in your Quake2/baseq2 directory!

BINDING KEYS
The most useful command to any deathmatch player is probably the bind command. It lets you assign another Quake 2 console command - like "use Chaingun" - to a specific keyboard key. So if I wanted to I could write a bind command that would make my player switch to the chaingun every time I hit the ALT key. Let's try a quick example of this.

Start up Notepad and type the following (or copy and paste) into a blank document:

//Your first Quake 2 config file!
bind e "use grenades"

When you're done with that, save the files as "autoexec.cfg" in the "baseq2" folder of your Quake2 folder. Now run Quake 2 and start a game. Every time you press the "E" key your player will pull out a grenade (provided you have some on you). I should also take a minute to note that Quake 2 automatically checks for (and loads if they are present) two configuration files named "config.cfg" and "autoexec.cfg."


USING MULTIPLE CONFIGS
I've already mentioned that Quake 2 will automatically load two config files - config.cfg and autoexec.cfg - every time it starts. But what if you want Quake 2 to run other configuration files? There are several ways you can go about doing this.

First you could use a console command in Quake 2 to load a configuration file. For example if you wanted to load config file named "myconfig.cfg" you would type exec myconfig.cfg at the console.

When you're playing deathmatch though you want this to be done automatically so you don't have to bother with the console once you're in the game. Gamespy can help us accomplish this. Start up Gamespy and click the player profile button. Select a player name and then click Edit. In the next window there should be a box labeled Custom CFG File:. This box will let you select a CFG file to use from all the CFG files in your Quake2\baseq2 directory. Click Ok and now every time you log onto a server with that player name, Quake 2 will automatically load the config file you selected.


RESEARCHING THE CONSOLE
The things you can do with the Quake 2 console are truly endless and a complete and thorough coverage of every console nuance and command is beyond the scope (and intention) of this tutorial. However I do hope I've picked your curiosity and gotten you interested in researching the Quake 2 console more.

You can start exploring the console more at Fahrenheit 176.


That was a quick, but hopefully thorough, introduction to the Quake 2 console and the customization possibilities it opens up to you. I highly encourage you to research this topic more on your own. It will help you build the configuration that is tuned to your needs and styles. Click the link below to read up on aliases.

Part 4 - Aliases

ALIAS INTRODUCTION
The alias is a very robust and powerful element of the Quake 2 console. For that reason I have dedicated an entire page in this tutorial to its discussion. By no means do I think I will teach you everything there is to know about aliases, but I will give you a working knowledge of them so you can at least start using other people's aliases.

An alias, at its most basic level, is just a console command. What an alias does is give the user the ability to lump a combination console commands into one. Say I wanted to be able to send a pre-written message to every other player, display the Quake 2 version info, and change to the last weapon I was carrying all with the press of one key (of course why you would want to do all that at once is another question). All of that could be accomplished rather easily with and alias and binding that alias to a key. See the example below:

//Basic Alias
bind q weird
alias weird "say Weird Aliases Are Fun!; version; weaplast"

Copy the above example into your autoexec.cfg file located in the "baseq2" folder of your Quake 2 directory. If autoexec.cfg doesn't exist then go ahead and create the file and then copy the example into it and save. Now start Quake 2 and enter a level. Every time you press the Q key you will say "Weird Aliases Are Fun!", your version of Quake 2 will be displayed, and your player will switch to the last weapon he/she was carrying.


HOW AN ALIAS WORKS
To better understand the alias I will now step you through the above example alias to see just how it works. Let's start by looking at the line that starts with "alias." This is where the alias is actually declared. After the word "alias" comes the word "weird." That is the name (given by you) for the alias. Naming an alias is important because if we didn't there would be no way to run the alias. In this example we could run the alias "weird" at any time by bringing down the Quake 2 console and typing in "weird."

After we've named the alias comes the actual commands performed by it. There are a total of three console commands used in this alias:

  1. say Weird Aliases Are Fun!
  2. version
  3. weaplast

Notice the syntax I use for the commands in the alias. All of them are in between quotation marks (" "), and each command is separated by a semi-colon (;). Now each of those commands is just a console command, as I previously mentioned. So each command performs as it normally would had you just typed it into the console by hand. The first command has your character say "Weird Aliases Are Fun!", the next outputs the version of your copy of Quake 2, and the final command just switches your player's weapon to the last one they were using.

The final line (actually it's the first) in the above example is just a bind command that binds the Q key to the alias "weird." So every time you hit the Q key the alias "weird" is executed.

On a basic level that's how aliases work! Now that wasn't too hard, was it?


USING ALIASES
After reading the above information you should have the basics of aliases down. Like many players however you may not care to actually write your own aliases - and why should you? You're too busy playing Quake 2 to worry about that sort of stuff! Luckily there are plenty of people on the Internet who are writing aliases (good ones, too) and distributing them for others to use.

Of course once you find the aliases you've got to know how to use them. If you've read the page up to this point you already know most of what it takes to run a basic alias. Here's quick recap of how to use a basic alias:

  1. copy the alias into a cfg file in your "baseq2" folder.
  2. Start Quake 2 and make sure the cfg file with the alias is executed (e.g. exec myconfig.cfg).
  3. To run the alias either type its name in the console or press the key that the alias is bound to.

That's how a basic alias is setup and executed. There is one other type of alias that runs a bit differently. These types of aliases require the user to press a key and hold it down for the alias to work effectively. A good example of this would be the "sniper scope" alias. This alias allows you to zoom in on an area, much like looking at through a sniper scope. Here's what that alias looks like (alias by Jack Frost):

// Zoom
bind ctrl +zoom
alias +zoom "fov 20"
alias -zoom "fov 90"

Notice that this particular alias is actually made up of two separate aliases - "+zoom" and
"-zoom." The "+zoom" alias zooms in and "-zoom" zooms out. The only alias that is bound to a key however is "+zoom." So whenever we press and hold the ctrl key the player's view zooms in. When you release the ctrl key the view zooms back out to the normal view. The rule of thumb to remember: when you have an alias that has both "+" and "-" components you should only bind the "+alias_name" to a key.


SOME USEFUL ALIASES
Here are a few common aliases that are very popular with beginning and expert Quake players alike. Just copy them into your favorite config file to use. Feel free to change the keys the aliases are bound to so as to accommodate your control layout.

CTF Grapple
This alias is useful for use with the Quake 2 mod CTFII (you will learn more about mods and CTFII in the next part). The alias allows you to grapple up to a position and then automatically switch to your previous weapon so you can snipe out the enemy team.

To use this alias press and hold down the grapple key - Q in this example - and fire the grapple at the position you want to hang from. Once you are there let go of the key and you will automatically switch to the last weapon you were holding. Press Q again to unhook yourself. This alias was written by ThEWaiT.

//Quick Grapple
bind q "+grap"
alias weap1 "use blaster;alias weaplast use blaster"
alias weap2 "use shotgun;alias weaplast use shotgun"
alias weap3 "use super shotgun;alias weaplast use super shotgun"
alias weap4 "use machinegun;alias weaplast use machinegun"
alias weap5 "use chaingun;alias weaplast use chaingun"
alias weap6 "use grenade launcher;alias weaplast use grenade launcher"
alias weap7 "use rocket launcher;alias weaplast use rocket launcher"
alias weap8 "use hyperblaster;alias weaplast use hyperblaster"
alias weap9 "use railgun;alias weaplast use railgun"
alias weap0 "use bfg10k;alias weaplast use bfg10k"
bind 1 weap1
bind 2 weap2
bind 3 weap3
bind 4 weap4
bind 5 weap5
bind 6 weap6
bind 7 weap7
bind 8 weap8
bind 9 weap9
bind 0 weap0
alias +grap "use grapple"
alias -grap "weaplast"

Sniper Scope
With this alias you can zoom in on other players, much as if you were looking at them through a sniper scope. Press and hold down the CTRL key to zoom in. Release the CTRL key to zoom back out to normal view. Alias by Jack Frost.

// Zoom
bind ctrl +zoom
alias +zoom "fov 20"
alias -zoom "fov 90"

Rocket Jump
The rocket jump is a great technique but it's more useful if you can do it quickly. This alias lets you do that. Point yourself in the direction you want to jump and then hit the F key to rocket jump (just make sure you have the rocket launcher and it's drawn because otherwise it won't work). Alias by Majestyk.

//Rocket Jump
bind F +rj
alias +rj "rj1;rj2"
alias rj1 "cl_pitchspeed 100000;wait;+lookdown;wait;-lookdown;cl_pitchspeed 150"
alias rj2 "set rj_hand $hand;hand 2;+moveup;+attack"
alias -rj "-attack;-moveup;set hand $rj_hand;centerview"


FURTHER RESOURCES
Well that's the short and skinny on Quake 2 and aliases. As with the console, I highly recommend you research this topic some more on your free time. Explore around the Quake 2 sites and see what cool aliases people have written.

A good site to start out at is Fahrenheit 176.


That's everything for Part 4. Now click the link below to enter into the world of Quake 2 mods...

Part 5 - Mod Introduction

The good people at id software were some of the first in the computer game industry to realize that to have any lasting survival, a game must be able to evolve and change. After you've beat the 20 or so levels in Quake 2 what's left to do? That's where multiplay, and the topic of this section, modifications, comes in.

Id, unlike most game companies, wants its users to have the ability to modify their games to their hearts content. They freely, and publicly, release portions of the Quake 2 source code so programmers (amateur and experienced alike) can hack around with the physics and playability of the game. Users can also modify or create their own Quake 2 levels with the assistance of a wide variety of editors available on the net.

These modifications, or "mods" as they are known, add exciting new features to multiplay as well as single play in Quake 2. Once you start to get bored with regular deathmatching there's no shortage of variations on deathmatch available to us. Here's some of the most popular mods:

Capture The Flag
The most popular Quake 2 mod out there right now. Originally developed for Quake, CTF (capture the flag) has become very popular in all sorts of Internet games. The premise is simple: there are two teams (red and blue) and each team attempts to steal the other teams flag and return it to their base. I'll be covering CTF in depth in the next few pages.

Jailbreak
A sort of variation on CTF. There are two teams, but instead of trying to capture a flag you just try to kill members of the other team. Once you're killed you are transported into a jail cell on the opposing team's side. While also trying to get kills, your teammates will be searching for a button in the other team's base that will free you from the jail. Once an entire teams is in jail they are all executed, giving the winning team a ton of frags! Learn more at the Jail Break web site.

Team Fortress
Another popular mod that got its start on Quake, Team Fortress will soon be available for Quake 2. Team fortress takes teamplay in Quake to new levels. Besides working on teams together, players can have different "classes" of abilities in the game. For example one person could be an engineer, the other a spy, and so forth. Each class has its own unique advantages. Besides trying to kill the other team, each team in TF (Team Fortress) has a unique "quest" that they must accomplish to win. Very popular. Learn more at the Team Fortress web site.

Battle of the Sexes
Another CTF type mod with TF influences. Battle of the sexes divides teams by sex, of course. Players also have the ability to take on special roles. For instance, you could elect to be a fighter, a medic, a sniper, etc. Another goal in BOTS (Battle of the Sexes) is to kill the opposing team's captain. You can learn more that the
BOTS web site.


Of course the mods listed here are by no means the only ones available. Explore the Internet and see what cool things mod authors are up to! Now, I'll get you up and running with the most popular Quake 2 mod today - Capture The Flag!

Part 5 - Capture The Flag Introduction

THE GOAL OF CTF
As I mentioned in the previous page, the goal of CTF is very simple. Players are divided into two teams, read and blue. Each team is trying to capture the other team's flag and return it to their base (just like in elementary school physical ed).

What makes CTF so popular is its teamplay aspect. You can't just wing it on your own in CTF. You need to work as a coherent unit in order to be successful. That means talking with your fellow teammates and figuring out who will be on defense (guarding the base and your flag), and who will go on offense (sneaking into the other base and stealing their flag).


DOWNLOADING CTF
Before you play CTF you're going to need to download the mod first, of course. Go to my download central page. There you will find links to the latest version of CTF. Download the file, run it, and CTF will be installed on your PC. After you've done that make sure to return to this page and continue the setup process.


GET THE CTF GAMESPY TAB
Now that you've got CTF you're going to need an easy way of locating CTF servers. If you saw earlier, I've got a link to the CTF Gamespy tab on my download central page. Download the tab to your PC and import it into Gamespy. Now when ever you click on that tab in Gamespy it will show you all the Quake 2 CTF servers available. You can then just double click on the server name to join a game of Capture The Flag!


CREATE A CTF CONFIG
CTF has many unique features to it that require some user tweaking of the Quake 2 configuration to be easily used. Here's the major things we'll be setting up:

Grapple
CTF introduces a new item for the player's toolbelt - the grapple. It's a lot like that one thing Batman always uses to swing around huge buildings. In CTF the grapple can be used to "grapple" yourself up to difficult to reach locations. Some people also use it to hang from ceilings while defending their base (this gives them a wide vantage point for sniping intruders).

Messagemode2
Talking is very important in CTF. You'll want to stay in constant communication with your teammates to coordinate your efforts. However the standard talk command (T) is probably not a good idea in CTF because everyone will be able to see what you're saying! When you're giving critical information (like a defense plan) you'll want to do it in "messagemode2" which just means any chatting you do will only be broadcast to your team.

Drop Tech
Another new feature in CTF is what are called "techs." Techs are just really cool powerups that give you special abilities. For example, the Auto Doc tech will regenerate your health automatically and constantly. The only limitation of techs is that you can only carry one at a time. So binding a key to the console command "drop tech" will allow you to drop the tech you're carrying at the press of a key. This is useful if you want to pick up a different tech or give the one you have to a teammate.

say_team
This console command is useful for creating bookmarked messages that you can broadcast to your team at the press of a button. For example you could bind the F6 key to transmit "Our base is under attack!" to your entire team when it's pressed.

Those are the basic console commands and features you should be using with CTF. Next we'll create a config file that will actually implement all these features. Start up Notepad and then copy the below config information in and save the file to your Quake2\baseq2 directory as "ctf.cfg"

bind q "use grapple"
bind e "messagemode2"
bind r "drop tech"

//This command tells your teammates what weapon you
//are near, your health, your armor level, and any
//powerups you have.
bind F2 cmd steam "I'm %L, %H, %A, and %T."

bind F3 say_team "I've got the flag (%L)"
bind F4 say_team "I'm on defense, %L"
bind F5 say_team "We need our flag back."
bind F6 say_team "Base is under attack!"
bind F7 say_team "Enemy is incoming!"

Now we should create a new player for use under CTF games in Gamespy. Start up Gamespy and when the player profile screen pops up click New. Enter a name for your player then enter "ctf.cfg" for the cfg file.

Now every time we play a game of CTF with that player, the settings in "ctf.cfg" will be used. So pressing the "Q" key uses the grapple, the "E" key lets you chat with your teammates, the "R" key drops any tech you're carrying, and "F2" through "F6" transmits pre-written messages to your team (such as "We need our flag back").


After you've gotten into your first few games of CTF you may notice you're having a difficult time keeping up, or figuring out how other players are doing things. Fear not because CTF strategy is our next topic. Click the link below to continue.

Part 5 - CTF Strategy

The best offense, is a good defense
In the game of hockey no matter how good an offense you have you can't win without a good goalie. The same is true in CTF. You can be an expert at stealing flags, but that's of little use if the other team can just waltz into your base anytime and make off with yours. If you recall standard CTF rules, a flag is only declared captured once you return it to your flag at your base. So if you get to your base and the flag is gone you'll have to wait until your team gets it back to make the actual capture.

Defense is the key. It's usually a good idea to have at least 2 - 4 people defending the base at any given time (if there are enough people on your team to allow for that). 2 could stay inside the base to guard the flag, while 2 more could patrol the perimeter of the base watching for opponents.

I should point out that in CTF camping is definitely OK. In fact if you're on defense and you aren't camping, you aren't doing your job. People on defense need to position themselves in the most advantageous spot, which usually means above the flag area in a sniper position. When invaders make it into the base you can then shoot at them from above. A second base defender could then go after them on the ground. If invaders manage to make it out of your base with the flag then you should follow and try to get your flag back.

Offense needs to be sneaky
When you're on offense your job is complicated greatly. Instead of just camping at a spot you need to be devising ways to infiltrate an enemy base. This is very hard if the enemy has a well organized defense. The standard CTF maps however do have areas that can let invaders sneak into a base. Explore the CTF maps on your own before playing actual games. Run around them and get a feel for weak points you may be able to penetrate.

The big point I'm trying to make here is that usually the most obvious entrance to an enemy's base is going to be heavily guarded, so you'll need to find other ways in.

Travel in groups
One of the best offense tactics is to travel in teams of two. One person is responsible for grabbing the flag and getting it back to base, while the other acts as a bodyguard. They're responsible for defending the flag carrier by attacking enemies or taking fire for them.

Large groups can also be effective, but you may want to split them up into smaller teams to confuse the enemy more.

Grapple Hanging
One popular maneuver of base defenders is grapple hanging. Quite simply it's just grappling to the ceiling and hanging there with a weapon drawn waiting for invaders. Here's how you accomplish it:

  1. Find a part of the ceiling where you will have a good view of the entire room but will still make you difficult for invaders to spot at first (usually the best spot is just above the entrance).
  2. Pull out your grapple, fire it at the ceiling, and hold the fire button down.
  3. When you've reached the ceiling pull out another weapon, while still holding the fire button down.
  4. Once you've drawn your weapon you can release the fire button.
  5. You are now hanging freely, waiting for someone to come in.
  6. You can release yourself at any time by hitting the grapple key again (it's the "Q" key in the configuration I suggested).

A demo of this maneuver is included in my demo pak, which can be retrieved from Download Central.

Watch out for grapplers
Now that you know how to grapple and hang be aware of enemies who are doing that. Grapple hanging has the advantage of surprise but it can also leave the grapple hanger in a tough position, as he/she is often an easy target. When entering rooms or open areas with large ceilings be sure to give a quick scan up to see if anyone is attached to the ceiling. Remember that grapple hangers often like to hang just above doors so they can surprise you upon entrance.

When you've got the flag
Here's the situation: you've managed to sneak into the opposing team's base and make off with their flag. You've also skillfully evaded any pursuing enemies. Upon returning to your base though you quickly discover that your team's flag has also been captured! You can't make the capture until your flag is returned. So what do you do?

First off you'll probably want to tell your teammates they need to get your flag back (in case they haven't been watching the status icon of your flag). Next you should find a safe place to hide from roving enemies who are also looking to get their flag back. If you've got a couple of defenders with you then stay put in your flag room. Although this is the most obvious place for you to hide you still have teammates with you who can fight off any would-be assassins. Also you'll be in close proximity to your team's flag once it returns.

If you're on your own however you should probably steer clear of your flag room. Hiding with your flag can be difficult because it puts off a pulsing light that can be seen almost anywhere. I recommend finding a room nearby your flag room where there are plenty of dark areas and funny corners where you can't quickly be seen. Or you should choose a location that will let you get the jump on anyone that should find you.

Using the grapple for speed
When you're playing CTF you may notice some players who are using the grapple to move across an area and not up to some normally unreachable perch. For example they may be at one end of a long hallway and they shoot their grapple at the other end of the hall and "grapple" down to that end. This is an old technique that has its roots in the original CTF for Quake.

The theory behind it was that you could move around much faster with the aid of the grapple than you could by normal running. While this was very true in the original Quake CTF it's not as true in Quake 2 CTF. The designer of CTF has said he never really meant for the grapple to be a speed device. It was always intended just to get players to positions that would normally be impossible to reach (like hanging on the ceiling). It just turned out that the grapple could be used for speed movement in the original CTF. So when time came to design Quake 2 CTF the designer (Zoid, as he is known on the net) designed the grapple more towards his original intention.

So for the most part, it is not a good idea to be using the grapple to quickly "run" across maps. However there are still some cases where it can be quicker to grapple to one location rather than running; particularly underwater.

Changing Teams
Sometimes when you're playing CTF you may get complaints from other players that the teams aren't balanced. Hit the F1 key and a listing of all the players and what teams they are on will appear. If there's 8 people on one team and only 2 on the other then the game is definitely unbalanced. In situations like these some members of the larger team will have to volunteer to switch to the other team to make things fair.

Switching teams is just a matter of typing in a console command. If you want to switch to the red team type "team red" at the console. To switch to the blue team just type "team blue". Remember that when you do change teams you will loose all the points you've accumulated so far and any weapons and items you may have. You will also respawn in a new area of the map.


Phew! Congratulations because you're just about done with this tutorial. Before we say goodbye though I thought it might be good to give you a few links to some great Quake sites. These sites can provide you with a wealth of information and are a great resource for novices and experienced players alike. Click the link to continue.

Quake Links

Below are some links to sites I have found to be of very high quality. They should be handy for doing your own further research into the worlds of Quake, Quake 2, and multiplay. Have fun, and if there's a link you think should be here and isn't send me an e-mail.

General Sites

Blues News - The best Quake news site out there, period.
Planet Quake - A huge site that has tons of affiliated sites under the Planet Quake alliance.
Redwood's 3D News - Another Quake news site that is well worth your visit.
id Software - The guys who make Quake 2! No link page would be complete without them.
Quake2.com - Big all purpose Quake 2 site with tons of stuff.
Slipgate Central - A search engine for Quake and Quake 2 sites!
GameSpy.com - Keep up-to-date with Gamespy at their official site.
Frag dot com - A good, general, 3D gaming site.

CTF Sites

Captured.com - Good place for CTF news and hosted CTF sites.
CTF News - All CTF news, all the time.
Xenocide's Flag Academy - A good resource for those beginning at CTF as well as the advanced user.

Other Sites

Fahrenheit 176 - A great site for console info, as well as an excellent listing of Quake 2 console commands.
3 Fingers' Quake 2 Tweak Guide - Brian Jacob's tweak guide for Quake 2. Tons of great info for tweaking and optimizing your copy of Quake 2.
Pure DeathMatch! - Most mods seek to change the Quake 2 multiplayer model and do radically different things... but not Pure DM! They just want to make good old deathmatch - that we all know and love - a whole lot more fun to play. Check them out.
DM Strategy Demos - A site with walkthrus and strategies for some of the official DM maps, in demo format.
Quake II Matrix - A neat Quake II editing site that seems to have a little of everything.


Click the link below for some final words from Rogue1701.

Afterword

So ends your introduction to the world of Quake 2 multiplayer. If Quake 2 is the first game you've played over the Internet you are no doubt blown away be the shear scale of the information that is available out there just for one game.

You may be saying to yourself, "There's no way I can possibly learn everything or become as good as people who have been doing this for years now!" That's simply not true. It's hard work, patience, practice, skill, and cunning that make a good Quake 2 player. I don't care how long you've been playing, if you're not focused you're not going to win.

Practice is the key ingredient to success at deathmatch, CTF, and all the other variations of Quake 2 multiplay. The more you play, the better you'll get. Keep reading up on information regarding deathmatching, and play against all kinds of opponents in all types of circumstances. Remember, no one becomes instantly good at something overnight.

That being said I should now take a moment to remind you first, and foremost, to have fun. The guys and girls who created Doom, Quake, Quake 2, and all the other games like it never really meant them to be runaway market share behemoths (although financial rewards had to be somewhere in their minds). What they really wanted to create were games that were fun to play. They created games they would have wanted to play four hours and hours. No matter how much flash and pizzazz you poor into your game it's not going to be worth a dime if it isn't fun to play. Isn't that the whole point of playing a game in the first place?

For my closing I'd first like to thank everyone out there working to make Internet gaming what it is today - challenging, revolutionary, exciting, and most of all fun. Next I need to give special thanks to the folks running the great Quake and Quake 2 web sites. The good ones rival most any professionally produced sites while still retaining that personal gamer's touch fellow gamers like to see. They were invaluable resources to me while I was writing this! Another special thanks to my good buddy Mr. Chekov. Besides providing some graphics for this site he is a fellow webmaster who is a great collaborating partner. Without him I'd have nobody to bounce ideas off, or anyone I could turn to for a fresh insightful opinion. Last, but not least, thanks most of all to you the reader. One of the greatest challenges in computing is to bring technical topics like Internet gaming down to the beginner's level, while still retaining it's essence. I love writing, but none of it would be possible if it wasn't for you guys and gals!

Happy Fragging,

Rogue1701


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