Tactical Gamer Primer
Tactical Gamer has been through many incarnations over the years. The community was originally built back in 1996 around the popular game Quake 2, running the LMCTF mod. In the years following, we began hosting more games and underwent the re-branding that turned us into the Tactical Gamer you see today.
Tactical Gamer was founded with a few very simple principles:
1) Create an environment conducive for mature gamers to enjoy the games they play without the everyday interference from the less-than-mature gamers.
2) Create an environment where there was mutual respect for your fellow gamers and where all members would be working together to advance the enjoyment of their hobby.
3) Support game play in a near-simulation environment. Where the focus of play would not be solely on doing what it takes to win, but doing so utilizing real-world combat strategy and tactics rather than leveraging exploits provided to players by the design of the game engine, regardless of the level of advantage, if any, it gives over the opposing team.
While these principles seem very easy to understand on the surface, the implementation of them is considerably more complex.
The principles upon which Tactical Gamer was built need to be taken into account together, rather than on a singular level. The first two are essential in creating an environment conducive to the success of the third. The very nature of the community depends on the configuration settings for our games, and the rules that are put in place, and the inherent understanding from the players regarding what we are trying to accomplish. Without all of these factors working together, Tactical Gamer can not achieve its mission.
The third principle is the most complex to understand and the most difficult to maintain. With so many viewpoints and interpretations as to what it means, people can become clouded as to what the overall objective is for our community.
Tactical Gamer is here to support a particular style of game play. Only through enforcement of our rules and principles are we able to continue to support this style of play. We are not here to cater each of our supported games to the popular demands of the broader gaming public, but to provide an environment that fits our target audience.
Not all players who come to Tactical Gamer will find what they are looking for. Some people seem to be more interested in highly-competitive play where winning is the most important objective. Others value teamwork, strategy, and tactics but view exploiting weaknesses in a game engine as acceptable because it helps them achieve their goal in winning. As long as both teams are mutually exploiting these weaknesses, they feel as though it’s acceptable.
All of the games we host depict a situation in which there is a conflict between two or more parties. These conflicts are presented through the use of various game engines. All game engines have limitations due to the simple nature that they are games and produced largely for their entertainment. How you interpret these limitations will determine if you truly do understand why Tactical Gamer is here and if you support our goals.
Most all of our games have specific rules about attacking the primary spawn points where players enter the game. In Counter-Strike Source, these rules are imposed by not permitting a defensive team to simply run to the offensive team’s spawn. It serves a dual purpose in that the defensive team’s objective is to defend an asset, either a group of hostages or a set of defined bomb points that the offensive team is trying to reach. In Battlefield 2, these rules are imposed by restricting a team’s ability to enter an uncapturable base for the purpose of killing players who are just spawning or entering the game.
So why do we have these rules? It’s quite simple. In the case of Counter-Strike the purpose is to keep the players focused on their primary objectives rather than padding their own personal scores.
In Battlefield 2 it becomes a bit more complex; when a player enters into a game they lack any form of situational awareness. They are not able to determine the situation to which they are entering and do not have the opportunity to mount a proper defensive reaction. In the real world, reinforcements would be transported in and would arrive with their situational awareness intact. An offense could be assembled in an area not currently in conflict, and a push could be made to re-take regions that have been overrun. By restricting the assaults on uncapturable bases it allows this occurrence to happen in spite of the game’s limitations. It allows both teams to organize and present themselves in a strategic and tactical manner without having their lack of situational awareness exploited by the opposing team.
Most players understand that wall hacking, giving yourself the ability to see through walls and artificially increase your situational awareness (SA), is highly frowned upon. Almost all gaming communities and gamers consider wall hacking to be a cheat and will kick and/or ban any player caught. Unfortunately, in some game engines the maps have flaws that allow you to see through solid structures due to glitches in the actual design of the map. This is not an intentional feature of the map and should be considered just as bad as intentional wall hacking.
Within Tactical Gamer, ANY activity that capitalizes on the limitations of a game to provide the advantage rather than that advantage coming from superior teamwork, strategy and tactics, is frowned upon. We all want to win when we play, but the focus at Tactical Gamer should be one of winning with some sort of dignity, honor, and skill, not because you were able to out-exploit the other team or box them into a corner built on technological weakness that gives you the advantage.
Tactical Gamer requires teamwork because only through working as a team can we complete the objectives we are assigned. The reward for winning through superior strategy and tactics is far greater than the reward for winning through exploitation and oppression.
Over the years there have been many debates about why our rules are the way they are. Our rules exist to preserve the environment the way it was originally intended and to protect the integrity of what Tactical Gamer stands for.