Commanding Guide

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Contents

[edit] Controls

Configure your controls first. You need to be able to rotate buildings, this is very important.

Left-click is select and right-click to give orders. Shift + right-click with nothing selected, will give an order to the whole team.

[edit] Getting Tech

Establish a good economy. Build 10 workers ASAP. Also if your base mine is any appreciable distance away from your lair, make sure to construct a mining garrison, either in base or at a nearby stone mine to speed up your stone gathering rate.

Protecting your workers. Depending on the map, you will have the first enemies in your base within 20-80 seconds. One early spire over your workers can do wonders to protect them. However, do not build this spire too early. On large maps, the 250 stone u spend on that spire could instead be used to start lv2 15 seconds earlier. On maps with choke points into base, sending a player in every direction can allow you to see enemies incoming and potentially allow you to delay the worker protection towers for even longer.

Getting level 2 ASAP. Holding off on your first factory and research center until you have lv2 started is a good idea in most cases. Getting stalkers early is very important as well as the tier 2 weapons and items that go with your first factory tech line. Sometimes, while commanding beasts, it is a good idea to research fire or strata first before starting level 2 for early advantage.

Spending your stone. Unless you have all the tech already, never have any excess stone saved up. The maximum stone you should ever have saved up is 2700 and that is right before you hit tier3 so that you can start cats/legos/coil all at once. We all have those times when we doze off for a second, and then say wow I have 2000 stone! If this happens to you, start building with all 10 workers until you get your stone back to normal levels.

[edit] Building and tech overview

[edit] Beast

Lair

upgrades:

  • lvl 2 (750 redstone, requires Nexus)
  • lvl 3 (1500 redstone, requires charm shrine and arcana)

researches:

  • Stalker (600 redstone, requires tier 2)
  • Predator (1200 redstone, requires tier 3)

(Total cost 4050 redstone)


Nexus (costs 500 redstone)

Researches:

  • Venomous (300 redstone)
  • Rabid (400 redstone, requires Venomous)
  • Carnivournious (400 redstone, requires tier 2 and rabid)

(Total cost 1600 redstone)


Sanctuary (costs 500 redstone, requires Nexus)

Researches:

  • Shaman (500 redstone)
  • Revive (400 redstone)
  • Shield (400 redstone)

(Total cost 1800 redstone)


Arcana (costs 500 redstone)

researches:

  • Mana Crystal (costs 300 redstone)
  • Frenzy (costs 300 redstone)
  • Sixth Sense (costs 200 redstone, requires Entropy)
  • Snare(costs 300 redstone, requires Entropy, Sixth Sense, Lair Level 2)
  • Storm Shield (costs 200 redstone, requires Strata)
  • Mist Shroud (costs 300 redstone, requires Strata, Storm Shield, Lair Level 2)
  • Sacrifice (300 redstone. requires Fire)
  • Fireward (costs 200 redstone, requires Fire, Sacrifice, Lair Level 2)

(Total cost 2600 redstone)


Fire shrine (costs 800 redstone, requires Nexus)

Researches:

  • Ember (200 redstone)
  • Blaze (300 redstone, requires ember and tier 2)
  • Fireball (400 redstone, requires blaze and tier 3)

(strata and entropy share the same cost and tech structure)

(Total cost 1700 redstone)


Charm shrine (costs 800 redstone, requires tier 2)

Researches:

  • Summoner (500 redstone)
  • Behemoth (800 Redstone, requires tier 3)

(Total cost 2100 redstone)


Sublair (costs 1000 redstone and 1000 gold)

  • Worker (costs 50 redstone, maximum of 10)


Spire (costs 250 redstone and 1500 gold, requires Nexus)

  • Can be upgraded to either Flame, Wind or Healing Spire

(costs 250 redstone and 3000 gold, requires the relevant Shrine (fire, strata or entropy) and tier 2)

(Total cost 500 redstone and 4500 gold)


Note that you can skip a unit but you cant skip a weapon. You can get predators without having stalkers, but you cant have lightning without tempest.

If you can completely mine out 2 redstone spots you will have enough for full tech including an additional 7 workers to make you up to the limit from the 3 you start with and an additional sublair (Total cost 18600 redstone + 1000 gold) leaving 5400 redstone for spires, replacement workers, forward sublairs and additional shrines to increase your buff frequency.

[edit] Building Placement

Planning ahead: Decide what you are going to build and where you are going to place it BEFORE you have the necessary stone. When you are about 100 stone away start walking your building workers to where you want to put the building. Then when your stone comes in you begin construction immediately.

Placing buildings: Try to layout your buildings in a way that will make it as hard as possible for the enemy to kill your workers and to destroy your tech. At the same time, your building layout should make it as easy as possible for your teammates to defend your base. This is something you learn mostly from experience. I must state that build placement is not as important as getting fast tech. Do not spend anymore than a few seconds trying to place that building in the "perfect place". It is more important to get the building built. As human, the key thing to do is to prevent the beasts from playing "ring around the building." Also, building placement is essential so that the beasts can not use the item sacrifice to destroy shield towers.

Building base defense: Building the correct amount of base defense is also something you learn mostly from experience. As a general rule you want enough defense to stop one skilled player from entering your base and causing havoc. Remember that the best base defense will always fall to siege or to a well-coordinated attack from skilled players, who use the right items and/or buffs, so don't waste lots of resources on making that "un-killable" base.

[edit] Controlling the Map

Establishing a forward spawn point: On some maps (examples include choke and tuskin), you are guaranteed to get a forward garrison up at a stone mine before the enemy can get across the map to stop you. On these maps you can cover the objective of establishing a forward spawn point and getting a good economy with the same garrison. On other maps, spawn flags will be sufficient for forward spawns. However, once you have tier2 you should think about establishing a forward garrison someplace.

Scouting: On maps with chokes, always send at least one player in every direction so that you can call out enemy units before they reach your base and so that you can prevent forward garrisons near your base. On open maps send one player to scout around occasionally. This type of "active defense" is much better than having defenders just waiting in base for the enemies to attack. Later in the game you can use sensors and workers to substitute having your players scout.

Keeping up with your players: If your team is making a big push, it is not a bad idea to send workers behind them to make a sub. Your workers will be protected by your team's forward advance. Then even if your team dies without doing any significant damage, their push will be worth it because now they have a new forward sub to fight from. Trapping the other team. As the game progresses, you can use the choke points to keep the enemies confined to certain areas of the map if you have at least one player attacking from each choke point. This allows you to freely walk workers to certain areas of the map, and prevents you from having to "waste" players by scouting these areas or escorting your workers. Just watch out for gates

Building forwards: As beast you want your sublairs around corners or behind large objects. This protects the sublair from siege shots and also allows your sub defenders to have cover from coil until the human ground units are close to the sub where your team can surge/blaze them. As humans, you want to build your garrisons at the top of hills. This makes them very easy to defend because beasts can't leap up hills.

Early aggressive forwards: In the first 5-10 minutes of the game don't make an aggressive forward sublair unless you are sure it will be finished before the enemy has a chance to launch a wave on it. Basically assume that the sublair will get scouted right away, and the other commander will call out the sub, and his team will spawn and go attack it. You should have enough players to build it that it is finished before this first attack gets there. It's not worth losing 1000 stone early on and giving the other team a ton of gold and experience. Also don't make it unless you have a good plan to launch an attack from it. Like you just researched ballista for example.

[edit] Using your players to their fullest potential

Intelligent newbies: A good handful of players on your team will be newbies who although their raw savage skills are not all that good, still listen to and follow orders and want to win the game. Try coaching these guys a little bit. If you need team gold, send them to the monkit patch. If you need stone, get them to mine. Other tasks that intelligent newbies can do pretty well are scouting, placing sensors, building forwards (along with a better player to provide the killing power), running siege, and playing spam weapon defense. I had one game where I started with an "UnnamedNewbie" and with a little coaching I ended with a sadist/homewreaker (It was his first game of savage ever but he was skilled at other fps game).

Savage Gods: If you are lucky enough to have one of these savage players on your team, use their skills to the fullest potential. These players can do anything, so put them in role that will most benefit the team. For instance, if you have lots of melee, get them to run tempest. If you have everyone running coil, get them to go demo and flux. Make sure to let them know that the buffs are there for them to take whenever they are in a good situation to use them.

Parakeets (kill/death ratio whores): Unfortunatly, you always have some of these players on your team. However lots of times these people have decent savage skill even though they have no desire to actually win the game. These people like to hump forward subs as beast and then hop in to carn heal and run or relocate whenever they see anyone good. So getting them a good spot to carn heal from and a good forward to kill whore from is a good way to use them to your team's benefit. Also try to reason with them not to buff in 1v1 fights and turn off auto buff to them if needed.

[edit] Auto Approve

Controlling gold: In pubs often your best players don't need gold, and your newbies are the ones that end up taking it all. However, you always want to keep a little gold cushion in case your best players have a few unlucky runs in a row. That way they can get right back out on the field fully loaded without having to waste time killing npcs. Some gold to throw up a few emergency towers is also very important. Actively using the jerrith mod as your team gold supplies change is a good way always keep your gold from hitting zero (ie turning off expensive items before your gold gets to low). Always leave on auto request for guns. How is your team supposed to get any more gold if they are running around with tier 1 units and tier 1 guns and can't kill anything?

Controlling buffs: You should almost always leave buff stealing on for all players. Besides the parakeet type players, most everyone uses buff stealing responsibly, and the truth is that a skilled player self-buffing will be better than a commander buffing 90% of the time. If you see parakeets or newbies using buffs ask them to stop, and most of the time they will. I rarely resort to turning buffs to officers only.

[edit] Interface

Hot keys: You should learn the hot keys to all the buildings. It saves a few seconds if you just have to type "b" "n" instead of clicking the build button and then clicking the nexus button. Also knowing the hot keys for buffs is important (although not as important as before buff stealing) because when you see a player who needs a buff, you want to get it to him ASAP. In the 2 seconds that it takes you to click the icon in the bottom right, he could be dead.

[edit] Control Groups

There are many uses for setting control groups for workers, players, and buildings (control 1 thru 9). In the beginning of the game I like to hotkey my workers to control 1 and my power miners to control 2. This way if I have incoming enemies I can quickly alert all my miners without having to manually select them from in between my workers. If my workers get stopped I can also quickly get them all mining again, without selecting and order spamming my defenders as well. Setting hot keys to sublairs and tech buildings can also be used so that you can train workers or research tech while still being centered on the battlefield and not having to scroll back to base.

Minimap: Clicking on the minimap is probably the best way to move around the map quickly because even with commander scroll speed at max, the map still scrolls pretty slowly. Also try to always keep one eye on the minimap so that you can see where there are large troop concentrations (friendly or enemy) or so that you can spot enemies trying to sneak behind your lines.

[edit] Buffing (the manual way)

Dont do stupid Buffs: You only get to buff every so often so don't waste them. Some examples of stupid buffs: a electric buff in a 1x1 when the enemy is one hit away from death, healing a guy with a scavenger when he is fighting 3v1, flame shield on a stormshield unit clearing mines.

Buff your best players: They are the ones who know how to get the most out of the buff. Example: don't give a newbie a shield when he is just going to stand still shooting a crossbow and the enemy who is meleeing him. I don't know, but I see it a lot.

[edit] Communication

Typing takes time. Try to minimize the amount of typing that you have to do because while you are typing, you are not doing all of the other things that a commander needs to do. If you are on a server that has a ventrillo or TS server associated with it, you should log on to see if other people on your team are using it.

Defend/move commands: Using move and defend commands can make your team react faster. For instance if you have 3 players in base and you have incoming to the north, you can first select them all and tell them to defend north. Then type "2 savages and ballista incoming from north". Hopefully your players will start moving north as you are typing and get a jump on the enemies. Also these commands are a good way to deal with people asking you questions. Like if someone spams "build a garrison here", but you don't want to build it. Instead of typing no, you can just tell them to move someplace else.

Attack commands: Give your team attack commands whenever possible. It's like giving your units a sensor. They can see the enemy when he is hiding behind a tree, rock, building, etc. Also if its dark sometimes they can't see into the fog, but if they have a target, they have something to aim at. You can also warn units who are being snuck up on with this command. Try to get your officers to use the EX2 officer target as well.

Built in Voice Commands: Using the built in commands saves lots of typing time. Obviously "return to base" is a good one to know. "Capture the spawn flag" when your team already has control over the flag is a good way to alert your team when the spawn flag has enemies near. The "obey my order" command is very good as well if you just typed an order, and you want to make sure that everyone on the team reads it.

Bind your own commands: You can add chat binds by writing them into your autoexec (example: bind kp_1 "chat OMG MY TEAM IS ALL NOOBS"). Good ideas of binds to add are: enemies north, enemies south, enemies east, enemies west, base is clear, they have constructed a sub/garrison, nice job!, ect.

Repeat important commands: If your base is under attack, if see an enemy sub going up, or if you have a gateway going up, you can spam these important messages a few times. Just cause one of your players spots the forward sub and says, "sub to the west." You still need to issue commands; let the team know exactly where it is! Don't expect your players to have e-telepathy.

[edit] Other Tips

Killing your workers is much often better than moving or selling them. It takes only 10 seconds to build a worker and then 15 seconds for him to mine his cost back in stone. So if you plan on building a forward and want workers to be working there, don't save space by not building 10 workers and don't walk your workers there (unless you need them to build it). Kill them and then rebuild at your new garrison once it is built.

Click Radius. A very good way to help prevent you miss clicking is by editing your click radius. The consol command is to edit it is: cl_orderClickRadius. The default is 30, but I set mine to 100. Once you find a good radius that you like, write it into your autoexec.

Using workers to fight: In the very early game, using a worker or 2 to fight can be rather effective. The reason is that a tier1 unit has 250 hit points and attacks for 120 melee damage. If you can get just one hit on an enemy with a worker, that means your team now only needs 2 melee hits on the enemy rather than 3 to kill him. Also you could get the enemy to go after your worker and distract him so that your team can take him down easier. A lot of times you are planning to sell some workers anyways and move them to a forward, so at least let them die honorably .

However, once tier 2 is up, always run your workers away before they get attacked. The AI for workers is horrible; if one of them gets attacked and they are in a group of 4 or more, every worker in the group will stop what they are doing and attack whoever hit them. This means instant death for all of your workers in the group. So try to avoid that first melee hit or keep them in groups of 3 or less so that the AI doesn't take over, and you can still run them away after they have been hit.

Resigning to fight: In small games with less than 8 people on your team, sometimes it is beneficial if you resign to fight an enemy in your base; however, you need to use very good judgment before you resign. First make sure that none of your intelligent teammates are in a position where they could get home to deal with the threat (Nothing pisses me off more when I am at a forward mining and could easily return. I see the commander resign to fight someone in base without saying anything. He gets owned leaving us with no commander for 30 seconds). Also make sure that none of your players are at a spot where they are counting on a critical buff to take out a key target. Finally, as sad as it is, do not resign unless at least half your team is competent so that if a noob takes your seat, you can quickly get him out with an impeach vote. Also before you resign, a quick message to your team telling them why you are resigning is a good idea ("enemy in base, brb killing").

Ditching your team: If you are losing, don't ditch your team unless all the intelligent players who actually attempted to win the game have already disconnected. However, you will often find that these types of players are the ones that stick it out, so you should too. Concede. When it is evident that your team has zero chance of winning, I would recommend a concede vote unless the game will end naturally in the next few minutes. Your team will appreciate a concede from the commander so that they don't get kill whored. Leaving the com seat because you dont want to take the loss is called bailing. On some servers you can get VoteKicked or even refkicked (if you do it alot) for bailing.


[edit] Human Strategy

I'm not going to write a second by second guide here, as they're often useless. Instead I'll set out what I know about human comming, aint that much, but I hope it'll help reduce the number of sac rush wins. - Eclipse

[edit] General Strategy

This topic is an overall guide to comming humans. Weapons hints, strategy hints etc etc.

First few points to note: The one main reason games are lost: NEVER EVER FALL BACK! ALWAYS keep up an offense. Even a couple of people. Com sees humans running around in his base, he's going to pull people back to deal with them. This relieves pressure on the people defending, allowing them to move forward. Chem rush is dead. It has next to no use at all. I can think of only one map where it gets used, but it is so easily countered it's not worth bothering with. Decent coms may chem rush to anti-sac with mortar towers, but that's a personal thing. I'd rather mag rush myself. Demo charges suck, due to the nature of them. They take 3 hits, no matter which player unit (excluding behe) and a scav can do that in no time. 8 second fuse, 1 second to kill. If the beast player sees you chem rushing, he'll probably strata rush and wind spire his base, making the strategy useless. Buffing: Ah, the one people hate me for. DON'T BE AFRAID TO BUFF! As com, you'll get a load of people screaming 'BUFF ME!!' DON'T just do it. If need be, turn auto off, or officer only. Humans are the defensive side mainly, so don't use buffs to defend. Use them to attack and do maximum damage. Human seige is an awful thing to try and sneak with. A few demo running savs do a lot more. (yeh savs do more damage to buildings. Read the topic on newerth forum, I'll link it when I find it again.) Maybe bring along a lego to tank. So let's say we're on some map. Humans are holed up in their base, all stone is gone. It's effectively sudden death tech. Once it's gone, it's gone. Here is where humans can win. If you're anything like me, you'll have about 3 of each buff fact. Select 4 (yes, 75*4 = 300) decent people and explain what you want AND what you know about the base (eg spires etc). Decent people will be aware of this anyway. Sort out the equip for them all and work out who will be doing what. If there's a healing spire that can't be reached normally, bring along a few disruptors. Same for wind spires. Once they've reached the base, speed buff them (using HOTKEYS!!!) into the base. They place demo. WAIT for enemies to retaliate, THEN shield them. If no-one comes, then you haven't wasted a buff. Once demo charges go off, elec them. And there you go, one big lot of damage. A spired base is different. For starters take legos. You'll need the health. Disruptors can be of use, but in this case speed earlier, so that it'll run out just as they get in range of the towers. Soon as the towers fire, shield. As you get better you'll be able to shield just before they start firing. Then they can demo away with comparative ease. The first tech to get rid of is seige. No sums means less people having to coil, more people on offense. If people are saccing, remove fire next. If not, remove the nexus. Then it's just whatever's easiest.

[edit] Mag Rush

This one is the most defensive of all human strategies. The idea is to make a nest of towers, with a shield tower in the middle so it can't be reached by sac. Sounds easy, but it isn't. Make your standard 7 workers and get them mining. If there's no stone mine within reasonable distance, make a Pmine gar. The cost may seem high, but you'll get it back in seconds, and have a better front line. Send a couple of people to farm gold. Look over your base, and identify which points can be blocked out easily. Remember that the research centre is generally useless as a block. Once you've worked out where to block (should only take a few seconds, most maps it's now standard...) go ahead and make an arsenal, placing it so that you block off the maximum available space with minimal effort. Level 2 is your next priority, as it lets you make shields. Next is mag fact. Then start making the towers. People will be screaming for meds, but forget it, they're only using nomads.

Additional Ideas: Once you have that lot done and they're not destroying the tower with ease, add in Xbow as soon as you have spare stone. In a decent match you'll have lots of spare stone. Later on in the game they'll have summs, so your tower will need to be protected against them too. Start designing bases with this in mind. DON'T be a noob and turn the front towers into mortar towers. I really don't get why the hell people do that. It's stupid, since storm just makes them useless. Instead, you'll notice that beasts try climbing over the towers. Note the ones they use and turn them into shock towers. Some maps, like 2_castles, offer better defensive positions than the starting location. If the map has a bottleneck that is NOT in the middle of the map, build your defenses here. Once you get better, you can go futher and futher from home. Just remember you need to Pmine too.

[edit] Balli rush

Ah, the most destructive tactic humans have. A personal favourite. Idea of this strategy is to get ballistas and a forward gar as soon as possible. That means no shield, no meds, no ammo, maybe X bow if you're lucky. So how to begin... Well same as last strategy really, get the stone flowing in. Then arsenal, still trying to block as much as possible. Level2, then whilst that is going up get research centre. You can't waste a second here. Send out your building team to the enemy base, making sure you have the gold. DON'T send noobs on the building team, as the team must SNEAK, not engage and fight. That means hiding, difficult for some I know. Get the gar going up, and once level2 is done, get a seige workshop, then ballista. Start spamming team chat with "^900BALLI RUSH!!!" and mark the gar and direction to go on the minimap. Once this is done, don't relax, always remember that the rush could fail. Go back to your base and start beefing that up. Just try not to use gold, as all the gold is about to go on ballis.

Additional Ideas If you decide to get Xbow, turn gold for that OFF, or just turn ALL except balli off. That way your gold stockpile will be nice and high. If there are many NPCs around the base, get a couple of people farming them. This strategy is VERY high risk. If they manage to sac your base, it's toast. Consider building a gar first, then tech at the gar. You might be a bit slower, but it'll live longer. Initial target is the lair and lair ONLY. But if they're really hurting your base/seen the ballis before, target FIRE first. Blaze pwns balli, but if they can't use it, they're screwed. Also has the added benefit of removing sac. Place the gar at the top of a hill. Adds sight, range and means beasts are slower cos they have to run uphill.