you will find our strategies on playing this team based game
mode, Capture the Flag (CTF).
It is first advisable to learn the various Force
Powers and Weapons, as well
as familiarize yourself with the Items
and basic game mechanics before attempting to play this competative
section is not exhaustive. First off, you will want to check
out sith's excellent guide
to CTF basics.
memorizing the maps you’re going to play, and being
generally familiar with basic combat and the team dynamic,
focus on the following:
Capture the Flag
bases, each with a flag. Your mission: grab the enemy flag
and bring it to your base. “Tag” your flag with
the enemy flag, and you score a “capture.” Kill
the flag carrier and his flag drops to the ground, ready to
be picked up by friend or foe. Tag the dropped flag to pick
it up yourself (if it’s the enemy’s) or return
it to the base (if it’s yours).
are scored for captures… other scoring is irrelevant
to the overall scope of the game, thus its important to always
keep the big picture in mind when playing this gametype.
to coordinate yourselves AS a team. The primary concern is
to prevent the enemy from taking your flag and moving it outside
your base. It is impossible to score unless your flag is IN
your base, so this should be the first priority.
use of the “team chat” so that you can speak covertly
and attempt to coordinate your efforts. It is inevitable that
when joining a public server or a random pick-up game, you’ll
be put on a team with people of varying levels of skill and
experience. Some may even be playing CTF for the first time.
have all sorts of problems (this is one strength of clan/leagues
and their specific servers… you can practice with a
group to get to know their strengths and weaknesses) with
people thinking they’re in a death match game (running
in alone, guns blazing, usually getting killed… ignoring
the larger picture in favor of one on one battles, etc).
for the sake of the team, and sacrifice, are values that should
be embraced by each player. Lead by example, if you can.
everyone can be a glory hound… individual performance
is less important than team performance. Put yourself where
you are needed.
you start out, don’t be a jerk and join a team that
already has enough people. The sportsmanlike thing to do is
to join the team with less people (to even things out) and
I like to join the side that’s behind in score. Once
the map rotates, everyone will be on the same sheet anyway,
but one might as well try to even the odds. ; )
I find myself on defense, as the situation goes. It’s
important to hang around in your own base, collecting what
are five basic positions on a typical CTF team:
DEFENDER (aka Base defenders)
should know how to use your lightsaber, since close quarters
combat will surely come into play as the enemy gets close
(especially if too many of your guys are going after the enemy
flag and not defending). But you should keep at least one
solid firearm at your disposal (varies with the map, but in
general I recommend the Flechette or Repeater).
yourself for an extended siege… stock up on health (stay
full at all times) and armor (keep yourself at 100 minimum).
You can stock up on other things (like the super shield and
Force Boon/Enlightenment) but you should
NOT do this at the expense of other players. An incoming or
leaving Flag Carrier will need it more than you. Don’t
hog the health/armor if others are coming in… let them
grab what they need, the gear will respawn and you’ll
have plenty of time to get one yourself.
you’ve got your “big gun” be sure you have
enough ammo to kill at least one fully shielded attacker (a
full clip is recommended). Note that incoming attackers will
likely be damaged (if your outer defense is any good), but
there will likely be more than one.
they will either send their best fighters, several will charge
en masse (risky, but possible to overwhelm you) or send one
as a distraction, then another to slip past and grab the flag.
One attacker engages you in battle while the faster one avoids
combat and gets out of there. Don’t let him escape!
the Heavy Blaster
Cannons to “cover” areas out farther
than you can reach. Be aware that enemies can also use them,
so don't let them fall into the wrong hands. Don't rely on
them too heavily though, since their firing arcs are limited
and their killing power is not great. However they can take
out an enemy who's back is turned (fleeing or approaching
Flag Defender should be ready to do whatever he can to protect
a Flag Carrier as he returns home, including putting his body
in the way of enemy fire.
the enemy has his saber drawn, draw yours and get in his face
(and give the Flag Carrier a chance to get to safety).
you die, you will respawn very close to the base (when you
do, GET BACK QUICKLY and try to anticipate what the enemy
have Force Heal or Team Healers handy. Without Bacta, you
will have to rely on the Force even more to keep everyone
would not recommend using the armor recharge station unless
nobody else does… save it for your Carriers. It takes
too long to recharge most of the time anyway... but if nobody
else is there, go ahead and use it. Just try not to drain
it completely. Better that you die than your Carriers.
powers to have would be Seeing (higher ratings
allow you to see attackers and carriers from farther away),
and Protection or Dark Rage
(to allow you to survive more punishment in a brutal siege).
Team Heal or Team Energize
may also be good to help out Carriers and teammates who are
damaged and can’t get healing or mana fast enough to
survive the next assault.
go exploring… unless you think you can take out somebody
sneaking up on your own (watch out, there is usually more
than one!) but you should alert your guys (using the team
chat) if there is time. Find a weapon, powerup whatever, and
then get back to your patrolling area. Memorize respawn times
of items so that you can get there and grab what you need
when you need it. If you see a friend who might need an item,
offer it to him first.
liberal use of Force Push and Pull.
If the enemy is getting away and you’re behind him giving
pursuit, pull him closer. If you want to keep him away, push,
or if you’re running and he’s in your way, push
him off the path. Do whatever it takes to keep him off balance
and yourself on course.
you can setup mines, use the Det Packs. You
can remote trigger them (for stealth) and discriminate between
friend and foe. Of course if team damage is totally off (make
sure it is or you may get kicked/cussed at) you can detonate
them with friendlies around without fear (just don’t
blow yourself up). Keep in mind though that the blast will
throw the bodies around, so don’t kill your buddies
this way either.
Trip Mines, be sure to use them in Secondary
(Proximety) mode. If you must use them in Primary, make sure
your teammates know where they are (Seeing helps to detect
them) or else only use them in areas where nobody travels
(these mines are long term after all… whereas Det Packs
need to be constantly replenished, and go off if you die).
LEAST one defender needs to stay within visual distance of
the Flag (a few “feet” in game terms). It is a
good idea to have speed, in case you fail to stop attackers
and need to chase them down. Having a Defender with the Saberstaff
or Dual Sabers (and a high level of Saber Defense) is a great
idea (use of Katas and the dual Saber Shield) can help put
up a defensive wall around the flag as a last ditch defensive
Defeners may also be active healers, using Team Heal
and Team Energize to help their comrades.
(a type of Base Defender)
A sub type of Flag Defender is the Sniper.
Please read sith’s article on the
art of sniping.
the Deathmatch Sniper however, the CTF sniper doesn’t
have the luxury of waiting around for his prey and remaining
unseen. Most likely you will be spotted much more quickly
(sometimes before you take your first shot).
using the Disruptor rifle (from a nice safe
spot) plus Force Seeing and possibly Mind Trick can be excellent
defense. Posting multiple disruptor riflemen will stop most
attacks. But be sure your aim is true. Place yourself so that
you can get off more than one shot, as you may miss or he
may have a super shield (or high level force seeing).
you run out of Disruptor ammo, or you don’t have time
to line up a shot, a Flechette can be okay
over long distances (primary fire) and is good against saberists.
Lobbing a secondary Repeater shot is riskier,
but the explosion may throw the enemy off a ledge. The Concussion
Rifle is of course great if you stocked up on lots
of ammo (Metallic bolts) for it. The Merr Sonn is good, but long distance rockets can easily be pushed back, so use it carefully. The BlasTech can be used
for sniping (with fully charged Secondary shots), but it's
a last resort.
CARRIER (aka Runner)
Flag Carriers. This is often considered the "glory"
position, but also the one of the hardest. Defending can be
insanely difficult, but against a good defense, being a Carrier
is the toughest job of all. You have to be fast, so have all
the Force Speed and Jump
you can. Avoid combat if you can, to save health/armor and
to get there quicker. If you are the kind of player who can
take out all opposition, that’s great, but you won’t
last forever and you need all the strength you can for the
job is to get into the enemy base, get the flag, and get back
alive, to put the flag in its place and score.
Dual Sabers or the Saberstaff with a high level of Saber Defense
is a good idea. If you're using a Single Saber, switching
to the Fast (Blue) stance will afford you better blocking.
SUPPORT (aka Flag Carrier Support)
Flag Carriers travel in groups (if possible) though you will
attract more attention, you can “rush” the defenders
easier. Whoever is in position to grab the flag must take
that opportunity and get home. If the Carrier dies, the flag
drops to the ground, and is up for grabs. Tag it to carry
it on yourself. If the enemy touches their own flag, they
return it to base, forcing you to start over… don’t
let them do it. As before, use Push/Pull to keep them out
of your way.
both 3 & 4, I recommend
a lightsaber. To distract defenders while your buddies snatch
the flag away and to give yourself a little added protection
(from blaster shots) as you run through (I recommend blue
stance, since it’s the best for blocking shots). You
should have full health and armor (and hopefully mana) when
you leave (a Super Shield as you go is great protection too).
Force Boon/Enlightenment will give you needed
force. You should use the force for Speed first, healing second
(that’s what the Team Healers are for).
Always run over health/armor as you go home. Rolling (with
saber out) may save you, or it may slow you down, as will
Force Jumping, Wall-Running, etc (use at
your discretion). Keep in mind that you may miss a Force
Jump or get push/pulled away from your target so
that you fall and die. Absorb is a good idea
to help counter this, so in general, the best Carriers are
probably Lightside (however, running home with Dark
Rage can be a gamble worth taking, if you know you
have enough time to get home before it slows you down).
you’re supporting a teammate who got the flag and you
see that he’s safe, go after him… because he will
need your help later on as others try to head him off on his
way back to base, to prevent the capture.
risky, but possibly highly rewarding strategy for a support
is (lets say you distracted the enemy and they all got away
or you killed them all and you’re alone) is to hang
out near the enemy flag position (the flag is gone now.. your
buddy is taking it home). That way if he fails (and the flag
gets returned) or if he captures, the flag is ripe for the
taking right away. This can be a shock to the defenders, who
start to relax prematurely. However you’ll likely be
alone and a very easy target, so use the element of surprise
when you have it. Best not to utilize this strategy too often,
as the enemy will catch on and make sure they take you out,
which mean one less guy to protect the Carrier.
you do die, you’ll likely respawn back at base, so you
might as well help the Defenders while you’re there.
Mid Level Roamers... these guys keep lots
of gear handy and wander around the level between the two
bases, harassing the enemy and denying them the good powerups/weapons.
They also occasionally catch enemies trying to sneak across
your territory and engage them, as a first line of defense.
Always warn your team as they come in or if you fail to stop
position is less common in smaller games or smaller maps,
and may not even be used. Without access to Sentry Guns however,
this position is becoming more important in larger JA maps.
Grip, Push, and Pull
to toss enemies over ledges, killing them essentially without
a fight may seem cowardly and annoying, but in a cut-throat
game like CTF, this can mean the difference between winning
and losing. Individual honor takes a back-seat to the team’s
overall performance, so do whatever it takes!
in mind these positions are not set in stone… all players
will probably need to play these parts in any game. Of course
the same people can be the Carriers the whole game (unless they
decide to rotate out of fairness or a better player shows up
that can handle it).
players are perfectly happy to play Defense (“D”)
the whole time, and that’s fine. A good team needs good
defenders. However, not everyone HAS to be a carrier and perhaps
not everyone should. Also snipers are not always necessary,
or mid level roamers. Especially the snipers, are specialized
skills and are not for everyone, however they do help a lot
when played well.
the game is over, congratulate the other team and your own
guys (depending on the occasion)… up to you, but it’s
polite. It’s like a duel, except between two groups
instead of two individuals. Its best not to complain unless
there was something gravely wrong (such as a huge team imbalance
or some poor sport on your own team doing something stupid
like shooting his buddies or just running off or constantly
typing and not helping anybody. A good admin should take care
of players who are clearly not there to play the game, since
they just ruin it for everyone else (unlike in a deathmatch,
where these players are just ignored, or killed over and over).
the map rotates, keep in mind that you may not be on the same
side as your teammates were before. Know how to switch teams,
but don’t always switch just to be with your buddies…
mixing it up and give yourself a challenge. Switch sides for
variety’s sake, as you learn from new experiences and
everybody has a good time if it’s kept interesting.
Nobody can win all the time either, so you might as well get
some practice either way.
final piece of advice is moral support. Sometimes it helps
to tell somebody they did a good job. Much like saying “good
fight” or “good game” after a saber duel,
this can help reinforce your teammates’ confidence.
Just don’t get OVER confident. ; )
bots on your team, some of the dynamic is lost. The bots know
how to play CTF, but you probably will have to do much of
the work on your own, without a way to communicate with them.
Bots are not as random as human players, and so can be easier
to defend against. Consistency can be good, or it can be bad,
you decide, but human players make better teammates in general.
This brings us to a problem:
3 has built in console commands that can be used to give
the bots orders. If you announce “I
am the leader” these commands should take effect. The
only trouble is that JA doesn’t seem to use the same
protocols as Quake3, though a Raven developer I talked with
said they were untested (and assumedly untouched). If these
commands were discovered, they would be a GREAT help, as telling
the bots to cover you, or defend the base, or attack and get
the flag can help out a lot. If anybody has any further information
on these bot commands, please
send email to me ASAP, I’d love to get
people using these.
get confused, especially if team damage ("friendly fire")
is enabled (though personally, I hate to play on team damage
enabled servers.. it means you have to be super extra careful
with your shots, and beginners and lagged players (or poor sports)
will likely kill their own teammates).
that we will hopefully touch in the future is Voice
Chat. This option is also available in Siege and
may provide a valuable help for people who choose to use it.