Monday, December 3, 2007

Activision + Vivendi = OMFG

Wow. Let me repeat that. Wow (and I don't even mean World of Warcraft which is included in this deal). This deal is HUGE. These companies have 19 billion USD in assets. Previously, Activision had only generated about 5% of their revenue in Asia. Now they have merged with Blizzard which makes Starcraft, Warcraft, and World of Warcraft, all games that are hugely popular in Asia. Meanwhile Vivendi gets Activision's "Hollywood" collection of IP; titles like Tony Hawk, Spiderman, etc.

Electronic Arts is in for some trouble. Time to get creative EA ! Making the same game every year (Madden, Tiger Woods) may not cut it any longer !


It's probably safe to assume that many executives spat out their morning coffee when news of the biggest merger in game industry history broke. Sunday morning, Activision and Vivendi Games announced that they were joining forces to create Activision Blizzard, a new, publicly traded company.

If the merger is approved, the new entity is expected to leapfrog over Electronic Arts to become the biggest independent third-party publisher on the planet, with estimated joint revenues in excess of $3.8 billion. That princely sum is dwarfed by the estimated combined value of Activision Blizzard's assets--a massive $18.9 billion.

While unexpected, the union makes perfect sense. Though its Call of Duty and Guitar Hero franchises are established success stories in the first-person shooter and rhythm game markets, Activision has no massively multiplayer online role-playing games in its portfolio.

Since the Creative Assembly was bought by Sega, its profile in the real-time strategy space has been nearly nonexistent. Enter Vivendi, whose Blizzard Entertainment subdivision owns the most popular MMORPG on the planet--World of Warcraft--and whose RTS roster includes the hugely anticipated Starcraft II.

As the game industry picked up its collective jaw up off the floor, GameSpot got ahold of Mike Morhaime, Blizzard's co-founder, president, and CEO, to get some insider perspective on this landscape-altering union.

Q: Obviously this is huge. Can you speak about the origins of the deal at all?
Morhaime: Well, I guess it originated out of a phone call earlier this year. (Activision CEO) Bobby Kotick went out and had lunch with (Vivendi CEO) Bruce Hack, and they chatted about possible things the two companies could do together. I think both companies left feeling like there was a lot of merit exploring the combination of the two companies. But before I get too far, I just want to clarify something--Vivendi is not buying Activision; they're acquiring a majority stake in Activision Blizzard, which is pretty different.

So it's more of a merger in which Vivendi has a controlling interest.
Morhaime: Yeah, that's perfect. Something Bobby (Kotick) has always wanted to do is grow his company to be the No. 1 game publisher in the industry. This provided him a way to do that. Activision's got a great track record, very strong in console gaming. In fact, the last several months they've been the No. 1 third-party publisher in console gaming.

Q: Yeah. The kids, they like the Guitar Hero.
Morhaime: Call of Duty has also been doing very well...

Q: Really? I hadn't noticed.
Morhaime: (Laughs) Right. Anyway, we've been very strong in PC games and online games. We're the publisher of the No. 1 massively multiplayer online subscription game in the world--9.3 million subscribers and counting. We're the only successful Western publisher in Asia.

Q: I hear you're popular in Korea.
Morhaime: (Laughs) Yeah, a bit.

Q: The total deal is worth nearly $19 billion, but it's not the only big deal of late and comes not long after EA bought BioWare/Pandemic, in large part for their upcoming massively multiplayer online role-playing game. Now, Activision Blizzard will be taking that project on head-on. Was this deal accelerated at all by the BioWare/Pandemic buyout?
Morhaime: I don't really think there was any correlation. We've been talking about this a long time before we heard about the other deal. There was a lot of due diligence. There was a lot of understanding of Vivendi's business and Activision's business. It really took some time.

Q: Are there any plans for staff reduction in the Activision Blizzard organization? What's going to happen in terms of the management structure?
Morhaime: Bobby Kotick will be CEO of Activision Blizzard, the public entity traded on Nasdaq of which Vivendi will have a majority interest. I will remain as president and CEO of Blizzard Entertainment, reporting to Bobby. Michael Griffiths will be president and CEO of Activision publishing, also reporting to Bobby. Activision publishing will include all non-Blizzard Vivendi games assets.

Q: So what happens to Sierra Entertainment? Is that brand going to remain or be subsumed by Activision?
Morhaime: (Pauses) I think it's too early to talk about the branding strategy going forward. I think those decisions will revolve around conversations that haven't happened yet. I do know that Mike Griffiths in his role as president and CEO of Activision Publishing will be responsible for all of the Vivendi games.

Q: So will all Activision Games be branded with a new Activision Blizzard logo?
Morhaime: I'm not sure about a logo--that's something we'll have to discuss. But I think this issue is very important from a consumer-facing standpoint, so I want to emphasize it: The Activision and Blizzard brands will remain. We're not going to put Blizzard Entertainment logos on Guitar Hero boxes, and we're not going to put Activision logos on World of Warcraft boxes.

Now on News.com
Part 1: Securing Microsoft: A long road

Living with technology: Magic '08-ball

All about coal: A necessary evil

Extra: Consumers to cell providers: Can you hear me now? Q: There is a big fear among certain gamers that with the creation of this "mega corporation," game quality will suffer. What assurances can you give the myriad Blizzard and Activision fans that this deal will in no way change the quality of your games?
Morhaime: I spent a long time speaking with Bobby Kotick about our culture, philosophy, and commitment to quality at Blizzard. And no one at Activision or Vivendi has any desire to change that. Why would they?

Activision runs an autonomous studio system. Their studios operate with a lot of creative freedom, and it's been very successful for them. That's something that may be different from the (way) other large publishers operate. But both Activision and Blizzard respect the talent that creates games, and this is going to be able to provide us with a stable, secure infrastructure with which we can take care of our people making games.

Striking Writers Should Get Gaming

The facts:

1. T.V viewership is in a delcine:


Television networks reacted with alarm
When a Nielsen Media Research TV ratings report
Showed a decline of 8 to 12 percent
In the number of 18 to 34-year-old men
Watching prime-time television
at the start of the 2003 TV season.
Some disbelieving network executives,
Fretting about fading viewer ship
Among a prized demographic group,
Questioned whether Nielsen itself
Had somehow
Botched its own measurements.
What Nielsen likely did record,
Though,
Is the first mass migration
Of young consumers
Away from traditional television
And toward a fast-growing entertainment alternative:
Video games.


2. Writers are on Strike:

It’s no surprise that scriptwriters for radio, television and movies are at a stand-still with the current Writers Guild of America (WGA) strike. After three weeks without work, those writers are starting to look for writing positions in the video game industry.

“Vidgames may be one of the prime reasons network TV doesn’t draw as many viewers as it used to, but it also represents a new market for screenwriters,” said Ben Fritz, technology and videogame reviewer for Variety magazine. “While the WGA has made no secret that it would like to eventually cover videogame writing, it hasn’t pushed the issue yet and is allowing members to work on games during the strike.”
The WGA is a union of writers who work in film, television and radio broadcasting. The reason the writers have all gone on strike in the first place is that they demand an increase on residuals for DVD sales and a healthy cut from new-media profits.
Naturally, the WGA has not hesitated to remind us that it plans to create a special category for videogame writers at the next Writers Guild Awards to be held in February 2008.
“Video games are written and many are written very well” said WGA West President Patric M. Verrone. “By recognizing the skill and craft of video game writing, the Writers Guilds intend to raise the profile of these writers so that they can get WGA contracts and benefits for this work. We aim, we shoot, we score.”
Veteran game and film writer, Flint Dille, said times have changed and games have come the new market.
“I’m certain some kind of union situation is going to evolve for this industry, including the writers,” Dille recalls. “Then as budgets went up, they realized they need designers and some actual art. Today, it’s unusual if a writer is not brought into the process at some point. Twenty years ago, games were all about the engineers. Over the next 20 years, I’m certain some kind of union situation is going to evolve for this industry, including the writers.”


3. Combine facts 1 and 2 and you get the conclusion:

Writers are going to turn to video games for work.
The writers may even GetGosu -_-

Sunday, November 25, 2007

CPL T_T

Wow, not even sure if I should get involved in this. This article was posted at GotFrag.com (http://www.gotfrag.com/portal/story/40748/). GotFrag is owned by MLG. The article is bad-mouthing the CPL. MLG and the CPL are competitors. So the article starts out:

"Editors Note: The following is an editorial article. It is solely the opinion of the author and does not reflect the opinion of GotFrag or its parent company Major League Gaming."


For that reason, I am also going to say that my re-posting of this article is solely because I think that the opinon of the author is interesting and does represent the opinion of the OTHER pro gaming site that I support (http://www.GetGosu.com).

MY opinion on this article is that it is sad (for the CPL and pro gaming community) and disturbing (as far as business practices go).

How can you have sponsors, host a tournament with a guranteed prize ..... and then not actually have the money to pay out the prize? It sounds like pro-gaming teams that are owed money should sue the CPL and the sponsors that put on the tournament (really going after the sponsors since the sponsors have the money).


Okay, on to the article:



By: Marc Turner - Published November 24, 2007 at 3:27 PM EST - Writer Archive

In response to the rash of changes to the CPL Winter 2007 event, Marc "Singlecoil" Turner begs the question, can we trust this guy? in this "biting" satirical piece.


Editors Note: The following is an editorial article. It is solely the opinion of the author and does not reflect the opinion of GotFrag or its parent company Major League Gaming.-

“Step right up ladies and gentlemen, Welcome to Dr. Munoz’ Traveling Road Show and Emporium!"

The $475 registration fee for the $1,000,000 2007 CPL Winter Halo 3 tournament should have sent red flags up a few poles. This is the same organization that had canceled two events within a month, and sent emails begging for attendance to the Counter Strike tournaments at their winter event, with the threat of cancellation. Now there is no million dollar prize at all for Halo. What the hell is going on over at the CPL?-

“You don’t believe it works? Just look at the satisfied customers!”

The team representative body known as G7 announced that it will boycott the CPL 2007 winter event due to money owed its members by the CPL, and the lack of cooperation on the part of the CPL in resolving these monies owed. The G7 federation is made up of many of the top eSports multi-gaming organizations in the world including Complexity, fnatic, PGS, wNv and several more.Not only is money owed to players and teams from past events, the cancellation of recent events has cost players and management travel and accommodation monies that cannot be refunded, with no sign of assistance from the CPL. The G7 organization has cited that the CPL failed in their obligation to payout prize money and to assist players and teams in that process.

“Come on people, don't be shy! The fact is, many of you owe your lives to the great magical potions of Dr. Munoz.”

In response to the G7 announcement, the CPL was quite clear that it believes it is responsible for those team's existence as professionals, with little regard to that relationship working both ways.The CPL reply stated, “We are saddened that two teams that were made famous and somewhat financially independent by competitions and cash prizes at the CPL have engaged in this type of action...”

“Here fella, I will sell you this second bottle at a discount as long as you don't tell anyone the first bottle didn't work.”

In the CPL's response to the G7 announcement, the statement read, “The CPL also explained that threatening the league with a G7 boycott was improper and that our organization does not cooperate under threat.” The statement went on to read, “... and while the CPL respects his right to publicly post his views and to refuse to attend the Winter Event, management believes his action may have other motivating factors.” Furthermore, the statement had this to say, “...(CPL)will not agree to blindly hand out checks just because some organization threatens it with negative publicity.”

The fact that Munoz acknowledges the right to publicly speak out against the CPL, yet maintains a policy of no cooperation in the face of perceived ”threats”, strongly suggests a “no tell” policy on the part of the CPL. Personally attacking Sam Matthews by saying he has “other motivating factors”, without evidence, reeks of strong arm tactics.Jonas “bsl” Vikan, newly chosen manager of the Championship Gaming Series Berlin franchise, had this to say about the CPL's response, “That they(CPL) have the nerve to lash out against G7 is phenomenal considering their tainted history, their broken promises and general disdain (in practice) for a community they claimed to valiantly serve for the higher purpose of "for the good of the gamers.”

Vikan went on to say this about G7's decision to boycott, “The CPL has always maintained a piss-poor attitude towards paying teams their money. For those that actually get paid, it takes ~6-10 months and there are obviously always a lot of angry people that do not get it. It's fantastic that G7 chose to boycott their events as they have been a farce for years, unfortunately they were the only alternative to gamers for a long while...”

"...and another satisfied customer!"

Speaking with Team x3o Owner Nick Fitz, he had no problem stating that the x3o organization is still owed $1250 from CPL Winter 2006. Fitz stated, “ I tried to e-mail the CPL and just didn't get a response back whatsoever.” He went on to say, “I don't have a personal direct contact with cpl staff there, so there wasn't anyone I could call directly.”

How has this affected x3o attending this winter's event? “We were planning on still attending the event, for the general exposure CPL is supposed to bring; but now with no CGS teams and no g7 teams - I don't see how they are going to be able to get even 32 teams. I would see some where between 16-24 CSS teams; which would make it not worth our attendance”, says Fitz.

- “Whoa! You bought a bottle of Dr. Munoz' special herbal remedy from another emporium? Well that's not our responsibility now is it? ”

The CPL G7 response stated “...a small list of teams claiming they had not received prizes, mostly from licensees of the CPL holding their own cash tournaments with their own sponsors. The CPL explained that while it is not responsible for prizes promised by third-parties, it has repeatedly attempted to contact these third-parties on behalf of the gamers”.

This is the classic switcheroo. You sanction a product, you put your name on it, you make someone else do all the dirty work and when it all falls apart, you take the money, blame the ones that did the work and they blame you, sending the customer in endless circles for a refund.

“ I personally guarantee each and every bottle of Dr. Munoz' remedies. Refunds have been mailed.”

With monies being owed and little help from the CPL as far back as 2003, the CPL has assured the community there is no need to worry by adding this “note” to the G7 response, “Players that attended the CPL Summer Championships (Dallas) have no need to fear the negative statement published by Mr. Matthews, and should know that the final round of checks were mailed this week as stated by the CPL Commissioner two days ago.”

A real guarantee may have been that the CPL put prize money in an account to hold and be distributed to winners by a specified date. Instead the CPL continues business as usual, downplaying the problem and blaming others. “As a matter of record it is important to also state that the CPL does operate under strict deadline policies which are disclosed in the Terms and Conditions Agreement... less than 2% of our winners in ten years have failed to comply with the deadlines and did not receive their prizes.”

“...due to production overruns, unfortunately, we have had to cut back on bottle size BUT rest assured this is a concentrated potion and will provide all the benefits of a full dose.”

The CPL has now stated that the prize money for the HALO 3 tournament for winter 2007 has been reduced to $100,000. The latest CPL press release unceremoniously states the following, placing blame on X Factor and “competition”;
“The X Factor Tournament, notified yesterday all registrants of some changes to the format of the Halo 3 Competition, citing a number of issues they have experienced during the planning of their event.” - CPL

“We now understand why some organizations have recently retired as event organizers. The competition is a lot more underhanded than we anticipated, but we will not simply go away. We want to hold the largest competitions in the industry and continue to expand our relationship with the gaming community at large.” - Chris Comer (VP of Operations X Factor Tournament)How many more times will it change before the event? Will there even be an event? Which press release do you believe? How can anyone trust the CPL, at this point, and go out on a financial limb for travel to an event that; may or may not happen, may or may not have a specified prize pool, that may or may not have the tournament game you registered for and in the end you may or may not get paid your prize money?

Is this not all starting to sound like a snake oil sales salesman? Almost like a slick bully stealing a kid's lunch money. Or at the least, a flip-flop candidate from hell. It is true Angel Munoz and the CPL helped birth eSports, but one can only ride that horse so long. How many times will the CPL's word to the community be broken? How many more times will people be lied to or promised the world before they say enough? But, who knows what might happen, because the CPL and Angel have a way of rising like a phoenix from the ashes. Don't forget Severity is coming in December and CPL Summer 2008 is an announced $100,000 for CS 1.6.

“Ok, thats it for me folks, I think I see the sheriff...err...sponsor coming.”

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Living in Hong Kong and in a "Steam" hell

Come on Valve, get your acts together in the vast Asian market:


Original article can be found at: http://tokyoahead.com/main/article.php/ecommercehell


Sunday, November 11 2007 @ 03:28 PM Contributed by: Oliver Views: 71

If you live outside Europe, the Americas and Japan, you are E-commercially non-existent to many international corporations. The market seems too small for many companies. Nintendo for example is smart enough to region-code their Wii console, but if you want to have one in Hong Kong, you need to buy grey imports from the USA, with the wrong voltage and without the localized content that citizens of other countries get. But surely you can buy the products and use them. If you want to buy games over Valve's Steam platform it gets a "bit" more difficult. They published famous and great games such as Counter Strike, Half-life and Portal over this online-platform. But they do not seem to like you - and your money neither for that matter.

Step 1: Try to buy - successful start, failure at last.So if you are trying to buy something with them over credit card or paypal, they give you success messages at the beginning, let you enter all your data and click "Purchase" with the verified data. Same for Paypal, you log in, process the payment and then paypal sends you back to the Steam-screen where you confirm the final buy. But then, Steam cancels the whole thing with a message that the process was canceled by paypal because of an authorization failure!

Step 2: Try again and again, and get the boot.But after trying several credit cards and paypal, you are certain that the problem is with Steam, not your credit cards. However, they try to send you back to the credit company to fix a problem they caused. And to make it even more obscure, the Steam client bans you from payment for 24 hrs if you try for more than 3 times with a credit card with a message that the server is down and you should try later...

Step 3: Ask for help, and don't get any.So you write a support case on the Steam support website and ask what is going on. Then, you get a reply asking to send your credit card info again, this time via email or the support page, and the first time a clear message that you got blocked by Steam - not by Paypal.

Step 4: Tell them that you want to spend money, not take it.So of course sending all the info again is not the most direct thing to do since you tried it all already several times, and what should you send with paypal info anyhow? Your account password? So what do you do? You write back that this is ridiculous and that you feel lied at by Steam because of the various misleading error messages..

Step 5: Get a permission to spend money - once only please!So they write you back that they unblock your account. Now why did they need your credit card information again at first but not after you complain about it? Still your account is unblocked.

Step 6: Repeat. Beware. In case you want to buy another game with Steam, the whole procedure starts from scratch. So you might better warn them beforehand if you want to buy a game, so they can unblock your account in time. And that is what they recommend, too. They might tell you that they unlock your account when you ask for the first time, but they do not tell you until you explicitly ask for it that they unlock it each time for only one transaction, but never clear your account form beeing a criminal suspect despite repeated purchases:But wait... isn't that the same as going downtown and buying the game in a box? Aren't you using the online purchasing to be able to get the game anytime, any day, from your home? Well not if you are living in Hong Kong, you are quicker going downtown, even if the traffic & pollution is hell... its not as hot a hell as with Steam.Luckily, other companies such as Electronic Arts are not as unwilling to earn money. They have an extra page for Hong Kong, a large showroom in the city and allow you to order online - without giving you the impression

Friday, November 16, 2007

Misinformed "Columnist" on the Loose

I read a story by a "guest columnist" at a website that I won't mention as I don't want to
embarrass them for having such poor writers.

The "columnist" made absolutely no sense whatsover. They were complaining that games like Quake and CounterStrike get used in pro-gaming, but games like Battlefield do not:


"Why didn't we ever see a pro gaming league for any Battlefield game? Why hasn't a great series like Unreal Tournament become a mainstream pro game? It is because the games that are getting chosen are the games that have the biggest companies behind them."

Hello?

"the games that are getting chosen are the games that have the biggest companies behind them" ???

hello?

EA makes Battlefield......EA is THE BIGGEST COMPANY.

The "columnist's" argument makes absolutely no sense.

The reason that games like CounterStrike and Starcraft (the two biggest games for pro gamers) get used is because:

1. They are the best games, they have the best game play. End of story.

2. Progressive (not big) companies like Blizzard and Valve (these are the "small" companies compared to EA and Activision) have embraced pro gaming because they are the artists / dreamers / creators of this business and are willing to do something new and imaginative.

3. Companies like EA will get into pro gaming in about five years when they see that pro-gaming is a good idea. EA does not have the vision to do something on their own.The rather wait in the back and let other people do the dirty work for them....then when pro-gaming is either proven or disproven as a good idea, EA will make their move. This is why EA is such a huge company, because they are smart business people, they let other people blaze the "trail of creativity" for them...
If they see that pro-gaming is not a good idea then they won't get into pro-gaming. If they see that it is a good idea, then the will make Battlefield the biggest pro-gaming title of all time.
Remember, EA is a company that didn't make games for Nintendo for about 5 years, because they didn't think that the NES was a good idea. EA is also a company that has no creative IP...they make the same game again and again (Tiger, Madden, etc)...there is no creativity here, it is the same game over and over again.

4. If this "columnist" really wants EA to make Battlefield a pro-game then I suggest that he writes a company like http://www.getgosu.com/ which I know is progressive pro-gaming company. Write Gosu and write EA and try to get them to do something together. However, I doubt anything will hasppen based on my explanation in section 3. I would love to see Battlefield and Unreal available at http://www.getgosu.com/ ....

5. Maybe this "columnist" has now learned something about business and or the real world.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

News from the WCG CounterStrike Final: Controversy and Borderline Disaster

What a day it was on Saturday. Unfortunately for the WCG organization most of the talk about Saturday's events were not focused on the matches themselves, but about the problems that plagued the tournament. Regardless, the tournament continued well behind scheduled finishing just the quarter finals match ups with the semi finals being pushed back to Sunday.
Besides the lagging schedule the CounterStrike Final's major problem was caused by the fact that the WCG made an attempt to combat the infamous duck-jump exploit, a movement skill made famous by today’s top players.

The problem with this initiative was that it would prove to be unenforceable and the attempts that were made by the referees let the players exploit their indecisiveness in a shameless manner that led to MYM vs eSTRO and a near fistfight between team Russia and eMazing Gaming.

The administrators standing behind the teams were consistently unable to identify the duck-jump incidents as they happened. The teams that lost though were hot off the trails of other complaints and filed their own. Hours of demo scrutinizing followed and flip-flopped decision-making turned the tournament into a parody that will live on in infamy. And the pressure took its toll on them too, as the fatigue set in the decisions became more irate.

To illustrate the lack of consideration behind this rule, picture the world cup of football where you are not allowed to kick the ball more than sixty feet. Then put a referee on the pitch in charge of enforcing it based on the subjective measurements of his eyesight alone. You are bound to get in trouble and so did the WCG referees; repeatedly. Despite all the criticism they attracted they worked relentlessly for 12-14 hours per day.

You must consider that CounterStrike is only one of the thirteen (13) games that were offered at the WCG final. Overall one would have to say that the WCG final was a success. Unfortunately the CounterStrike segment of the tournament was marred by controversy and borderline disaster.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

UIGEA Plays Favorites

The most interesting part of last year's UIGEA is that it clearly says that "fantasy sports" is NOT gambling.

However, fantasy sports are most definitely gambling (isn't picking individual players and betting on how they perform just about EXACTLY the same as picking a whole team and betting on how it will perform?)

I would say that fantasy sports may even be more of a gamble than regular sports betting!

There are so many variables spanning an entire season of pro sports. The group of players that you "draft" before the season starts may not even last the whole season (every player you draft could get injured).

I remember that one year I had drafted Steve Young with my first draft pick (which was randomly assigned to me). In the previous NFL season Steve had accumulated more fantasy points than any other NFL player, making him the highest ranked player in our draft. Steve promptly got a serious concussion in the first month of the season and never played football again. If only I had been more skillful, I could have either prevented Steve's injury and or not drafted Steve in the first place. Luckily, (note "luckily") this was the same year that Kurt Warner burst on the scene (because the Rams starting QB also got injured). Kurt went on to put up one of the greatest offensive seasons of all time, and after picking him up off of waivers (because I was lucky enough to sign him before anyone else) I ended up winning my fantasy league...all without Steve Young my #1 draft pick. There was so much luck involved in this, I really couldn't believe it.

You have no control over these players getting injured or not. You also don't have any control on how any of these players will perform on a game to game basis. It is entirely luck how your players perform. These are all reasons why playing fantasy sports is gambling.

This shows you the power of the MLB, NFL, NBA. It's all about paying up with the right people. The government doesn't really want to stop gambling, they just want to get paid.

Fantasy sports makes the average sports viewer feel more connected and involved with the sports that they watch. This means that these league's fans will become more attached to their sport, and they will become more loyal.

Personally, I don't have any problem with fantasy sports ( after all I won my football league right?). I don't have any problem with gambling either. In general, I don't think that the government should try to control the decisions that adults are capable of making for themselves. What I do have a problem with, is the fact that the UIGEA plays favorites.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Halo 3 Network Architecture Makes Pro Gaming Impossible

Today I read someone's blog that said how impressed they were with the amount of information (kills, deaths, ranking) that Halo 3's game servers stored. I just had to point some things out to him:

1. Halo 3's game servers don't store stats. (Their SQL servers do :)

2. Halo 3 doesn't even have game servers. (One of the player's Xbox is selected as the host).

3, If you play CounterStrike on a Hlstatsx server or a http://www.GetGosu.com server, they store all the info that Halo 3 stores + they store hit box information (besides just tracking head shots they also track legs, arms, chest and also which weapon you used to do all that damage.

4. Because a client machine is acting as the server or host, you can never get a fair game. If you put 8 good players into a game together, the team who has the host on their team will almost always win. That is because the player that is the host has a huge advantage over everyone else. They have a perfect network connection, meanwhile everyone else has to deal with lag. That is simply not fair.

5. Because of this network architecture, you could never ever ever play Halo 3 online in a competitive fashion. Therefore, I suggested to this blogger that if he wanted to play competitively he should get gosu.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Gaming Graphic Design Contest

Well, this post is a slight departure from the Counter-Strike:Source Strategy Guide that I have been working on. I recently saw a news post at my fav. pro-gaming site about a graphic design contest that they are currently running. So I thought it was best to "support the arts" and get the word out that someone could take a quick break from their CounterStrike scrimming to win a few bucks by using their art skillz.

I'm pretty sure you don't have to enter every contest (but as long as you are doing one I guess you might as well do them all). If you were only to do one, I guess do the first one cause is pays more.

Here is the story from GetGosu:

Use your artistic talents to earn some cash!

www.GetGosu.com is launching a Three-Pronged Graphic Design Contest.

Enter one or all three categories and win up to $100 (100 USD).

The goal of each graphic is to get the message out that Gamers can get win REAL MONEY by playing their FAVORITE GAMES at www.GetGosu.com. Right now we are focusing on Counterstrike:Source (CS:S) and Half-Life 2:DeathMatch (HL2:DM) - so your graphics should too.

Direct submissions and any questions regarding submissions to: Bonus(at)GetGosu.com.

Submissions must be received by September 30th, 2007.

Graphic Contest #1: Pay-Out: $50 (50 USD paid via PayPal).
Shape: Small Square.
Size: 200h x 189v.
Goal/Message of Ad: Tell people they can win money by playing CounterStrike at www.GetGosu.com.
Suggested Ad Text: Win Money Playing Counterstrike at www.GetGosu.com.
Colors: See www.GetGosu.com for guidance. Not required.

Graphic Contest #2 : Pay-Out: $25 (25 USD paid via PayPal).
Shape: Banner.
Size: 468h x 49v.
Goal/Message of Ad: Tell people they can win money by playing CounterStrike at www.GetGosu.com.
Suggested Ad Text: Win Money Playing Counterstrike at www.GetGosu.com.
Colors: See www.GetGosu.com for guidance. Not required.


Graphic Contest #3 : Prize: $25 (25 USD paid via paypal).
Shape: Skyscraper.
Size: 120h x 578v.
Goal/Message of Ad: Tell people they can win money by playing CounterStrike at www.GetGosu.com.
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Thursday, September 6, 2007

Part III of the Counter-Strike:Source Strategy Guide

I haven't posted in a few weeks as I have been on vacation. But, now I am back and am itching to play some Counter-Strike:Source. Since I'll inevitably be playing on a CS:S team with a few scrubs that will need my help; here is my latest installment of the Counter-Strike:Source Strategy Guide (Part III):

Counter-Strike:Source Strategy Guide Part III:

III. Room Breaching

There are a number of things that noobs continuously do wrong when it comes to breaching a room (moving through a doorway) in Counter-Strike.
a. They don't use flash-bangs.
b. They use flash-bangs in an uncoordinated manner and “team-flash.”
c. They don't time the breach with their teammates and or they enter the room by themselves.

In my opinion, not using a flash-bang is acceptable when:

a. You are 100% certain that the enemy is not in the room that you are entering.
b. You are relying on your speed as part of a flanking maneuver.

As far as team-flashing goes, most team-flashing in CS:S is caused by little kids that have nothing better to do but spawn and start using flashes. However, for those of us that aren't so easily entertained I would suggest that you make it standard practice that the second man (the man behind a crouching point-man) use the flash-bang (after all if you are the point-man you probably want to have a gun ready to fire).
I suggest that before entering the room the second man throws a flash-bang over the shoulder of the point-man, thereby the point-man is able to keep his weapon trained on the doorway in case the enemy should come through the doorway.
As far as working as team in a coordinated manner goes, take if from some real-life pros:
“When you move into a space to clear, you gotta have trust in the guy behind ya, because they cover the areas you can’t see and fire directly over your shoulder if a threat is posed,” said Pvt. Craig R. Putnam. “You have to know you can rely on them.”
Each member of the squad is assigned a “section of responsibility” or portion of the room for which they are responsible upon entry. The first and second men clear immediate threats, which are threats in the Soldiers’ direct line of sight when they enter.
The next set of Soldiers cover the first set by perusing all other areas that may hold secondary potential threats. These Soldiers move closely behind the first Soldiers, positioning their weapons on the shoulders of those in front as a safety precaution. They scan and identify high threats and assess “red zones,” which are objects in the room that the enemy may be able to hide behind, said Capt. Jared P. Wilson, C Company commander.
The team leader controls the movements of the squad throughout the maneuver, making the calls on what his Soldiers will do next based on his knowledge of their capabilities, Wilson said. The squad leader can position himself anywhere in the element to better control it and the mission, he explained.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Part II of the Counter-Strike Strategy Guide

Hi again,

Last week I started the Counter Strike Strategy Guide with some "universal" military tactics.
This week I am bringing you part II of the Counter Strike Strategy Guide: Close Quarters Battle (CQB).
Counter-Strike is a game in which the vast majority of fighting is close quarters. The majority of confrontations occur over
small rooms, doors, choke points, hallways, corners and alleys. Generally there is not much fighting in wide open spaces because Counter Strike Maps
don't have many open spaces and also because if you are running around in the open you are asking to get shot in the face.
Therefore, it makes sense for us to take a look at the principles used in close quarters battles.

Counter-Strike Strategy Guide Part II:

II. Close Quarters Battle

Contents:

1. Overview
2. Principles of Assault
2.1 Detailed Planning
2.2 Surprise
2.3 Methods of Entry
2.4 Speed
2.5 Violence of Action
3. Military
4. Police
5. Private Industry

1. Overview

Close Quarters Battle (CQB) or close quarters combat (CQC) is a type of fighting in which small units engage the
enemy with personal weapons at very short range, even to the point of hand-to-hand combat. In the typical CQB scenario,
the attackers try a very fast, violent takeover of a vehicle or structure controlled by the defenders, who usually have no
easy way to withdraw. Because enemies, hostages/civilians, and fellow operators can be closely intermingled, CQB demands a
rapid assault and a precise application of lethal force. The operators need great proficiency with their weapons, but also the
ability to make split-second decisions in order to limit friendly casualties.
Criminals sometimes use CQB techniques, such as in an armed robbery or jailbreak, but most of the terminology comes from
training used to prepare soldiers, police, and other authorities. Therefore, much CQB material is written from the perspective
of the "good guys" who must break into the stronghold where the "bad guys" have barricaded themselves.
Although there is considerable overlap, CQB is not synonymous with urban warfare, now sometimes known by the military acronyms
MOUT (military operations on urban terrain) or FIBUA (fighting in built-up areas) in the West. Urban warfare is a much larger field,
including logistics and the role of crew-served weapons like heavy machine guns, mortars, and mounted grenade launchers,
as well as armor and air support. In CQB, the emphasis is on small infantry units using light, compact weapons that one man
can carry and use easily in tight spaces, such as submachine guns, shotguns, pistols and even knives.

2. Principles of Assault

2.1 Detailed Planning

Ideally, the leader of the assault team gathers all available intelligence about the crisis scene, targets, and innocents. He diagrams and discusses the proposed plan, outlining each team’s actions and responsibilities, location, fields of fire, and special tasks (even to the point of a wall-by-wall and door-by-door layout of the objective, where available). Since the assault team usually already has specialized training, the operation is based on well-understood, established standing operating procedure. When considerable preparation time is available, the team sometimes conducts step-by-step walk-through exercises on a mock-up that duplicates the target environment. Some units maintain permanent "shoot houses" or even airliner/ship mock-ups for practicing marksmanship and tactics more realistically.
In a prolonged standoff, the attackers can sometimes bring in specialized equipment for probing the inside of a well-defended area. Sensitive thermal cameras can help locate the occupants, and surveillance personnel can run microphones and fiber-optic cameras through walls, ceilings, and floors. The "throw phones" used to establish contact between authorities and suspects often contain hidden cameras or infrared illuminators for added intelligence-gathering. If hostages escape or can communicate/signal the attackers, they can provide more information from inside.
However, the time and resources to carry out such luxurious preparations are not always there. Not every attacker can field an overwhelming force of specially trained and equipped men with reinforcements standing by. Information about the inside of an enemy-held building or vehicle may not be accessible beyond studying it through binoculars or a rifle scope. While some attackers can go to the lengths of wearing the enemy down by siege or even tunneling under them, others must get the current job done immediately with the force available in order to move on to the next.

2.2 Surprise

Military team conducting a stealthy approach to the target CQB training. The objective is to complete all offensive action before the party being engaged is able to react. To gain this element of surprise, the entry teams use stealth movement and noise/light discipline to get as close to the targets as possible, hopefully putting themselves in a position to engage an enemy from the moment he becomes aware of them. Some teams use subsonic sniper rifles for their initial shots on sentries or dogs.
An assault should come at a time when least expected, taking into consideration fatigue, normal sleep periods, and other factors that detract from the target's alertness. Diversions are an essential element in achieving surprise. Staged emergencies, such as a mock auto accident, fire, or explosion near the crisis site, can divert the target's attention away from the assaulting elements. Explosive breaching and diversionary devices, such as flash bang, smoke, or gas grenades can be employed to distract and disorient the targets. Negotiators can try to manipulate the defenders into a more vulnerable position or convince them that their position will not be stormed.

2.3 Methods of Entry

Entry team approaching target breach point during CQB training. When law enforcement clears a building, they usually work in a slow and deliberate manner using ballistic shields and mirrors for searching. This affords the highest degree of safety and security for the police, as well as any uninvolved bystanders inside the search area, who can be identified and safely removed without subjecting them to the shock and danger of a sudden assault. When suspects are encountered, the police can confront them with an alert, armed force and try to take control without shooting. If the searchers meet heavy resistance, they can usually pull back without harm and prepare for a dynamic entry.
However, against determined, well-armed opponents who fight in concert to defend an area and keep it under their control, slow stop-and-go movement can cause the deaths of many attackers and hostages. That leads to dynamic entry, used in military operations or hostage rescues. It is the popular image of CQB: a flood of gunmen who burst in without warning and attempt to seize the area. Dynamic entry tactics must be rapid and aggressive, ideally a continuous flow using overwhelming force that does not stop until the threat is eliminated.
In the vast majority of hostage rescue and other dynamic CQB operations, it is desirable to use multiple simultaneous attacks from different entry points to overload the target's ability to react effectively. The more entry points the attackers can choose from, the better their chances. The teams actually entering the objective usually have to synchronize with snipers, negotiators, power technicians, perimeter guards, and others who assist from the outside. Medical personnel, investigators, and bomb experts may be prepped to enter the scene as soon as the initial attackers get control.
It is important that a central commander coordinate all armed elements, not only to better complete a sweep of the target area, but especially to guard against friendly fire. Most assault rifle bullets can go straight through an enemy and still exit with enough force to kill again, so letting enemies get between two attackers (or attacker and hostage) can easily lead to fratricide. Pistol rounds and shotgun pellets carry less risk of overpenetration through a human body, but on a miss, they can still blast through several sheets of drywall and kill unseen people on the other side. When large areas must be searched, leaders will assign boundaries between elements and track them by radio to ensure they do not interfere with each other. The goal is to establish overlapping fields of fire, so that multiple shooters can attack at once from different directions without danger of hitting one another.

2.4 Speed

Once the assault begins, the team must gain control before the target understands what is happening and can prepare an effective defense or mount a counterattack. The defenders sometimes have a contingency plan that could cause the attack to fail instantly, such as killing hostages, detonating bombs, or destroying evidence. If they can execute an organized plan, such as falling back into a prepared stronghold, or breaking through the perimeter, the possibility of friendly casualties increases. Speed is achieved through well-designed tactics, such as gaining proximity with an undetected approach, the use of multiple entry points, and explosive breaching. Note that the need for speed does not necessarily translate to individual operators choosing to run in these situations.

2.5 Violence of Action

For the dynamic entry team, gaining and maintaining physical and psychological momentum is essential. They smash down doors, blast holes in walls, come through windows, and drop from helicopters. Vehicle-mounted rams and platforms are used to create unexpected entry points. The sensory onslaught from tear gas, explosive breaching, flashbangs, and gunfire is complemented by the intimidating and aggressive actions of the assault team. Hostiles do sometimes hide among the hostages, so once the shooting has stopped, operators must maintain dominance over anyone still alive.
The defenders try to stop enemies close to the entry points. The "fatal funnel" is the dangerous area where the assaulter is silhouetted against his own entry point from the perspective of defenders inside the room. Once operators begin to enter, the defenders try to keep them from escaping the fatal funnel. The attackers are also vulnerable from the corners closest to the entry point, the first place from which they can be hit from behind as they enter the room. If the first attackers cannot clear the corners and get out of the fatal funnel, allowing those behind to move in and help, the attack can bog down.

3. Military

Military uses of close quarters battle vary by unit type, branch and mission. Military operations other than war (MOOTW) may involve peacekeeping or riot control. Specialized forces such as the U.S. Coast Guard or U.S. Navy VBSS (Visit, Board, Search, and Seizure) teams may adapt CQB tactics to their specific needs, e.g. for the boarding compliant and non-compliant vessels at sea. Hostage rescue or extraction by commando troops such as the British Special Air Service, Delta Force or U.S. Navy SEALs may involve even more esoteric adaptations or variations, depending on specialized environments, weapons technology, political considerations or a mixture of friendly, unfriendly or civilian personnel.
Armies that often engage in urban warfare operation may train most of their infantry in basic CQB doctrine as it relates to common tasks such as building entry, "clearing a room" and concussion and other grenades.

4. Police

Domestically, police crisis response teams (CRTs) are the primary groups to engage in CQB. Situations involving the potential for CQB generally involve extraordinary threats outside of conventional police capabilities, and thus CRTs are specifically organized, equipped, and trained to respond to these situations. These situations often require the special tactics and techniques involving building entry and room clearing procedures that are the hallmarks of CQB.
Police CQB doctrine is also specialized by unit type and mission. Riot control, corrections, the FBI Hostage Rescue Team and SWAT teams, for example, each have different goals, but may make use of similar tactics and technology such as non-lethal force. A prison, for example, may have a squad which specializes in high-risk cell extractions, and psychiatric hospitals or wards often have similar specialized teams. Among the "less-than-lethal" tools and tactics central to police CQB are electroshock guns, pepper spray, riot shields and riot guns to fire tear gas, rubber bullets, plastic bullets or beanbag rounds. All so-called "less-than-lethal" weapons can inflict injuries which may cause death.

5. Private Industry

Private corporations engaged in security or military operations overseas maintain internal CQB teams.
For example, these teams might be responsible for responding to an incident at a facility operated by a
government agency who has engaged the contractor's services. That team would then act as the Crisis Response Team (CRT) and
"clear" the facility of threats or hostiles. In another example, Military corporations or Private military contractor might be
employed to provide protection for high-ranking diplomats or military officers in war zones.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Counter-Strike Strategy Guide

There are emerging opportunities for Counter-Strike players, and gamers in general,
to play online PC gaming tournaments for real-money. There is going to
be a great deal of interest in these tournaments because:
1. They are legal (Counter-Strike is a skill-game and is not gambling).
2. There is a vacuum created by the absence of online poker in the U.S.A. that
skill-games like Counter-Strike can fill.
3. Until now, online Counter-Strike tournaments have never been done in a good fashion.

Since we are already Counter-Strike players, we clearly have a decided advantage over other gamers
that may be drawn to these new Counter-Strike tournaments. However, I am still surprised at how
many times I have been in a public Counter-Strike server and see kids using really n00b tactics.
Of course I am then reminded why I don't play on public CS servers. But, for all you kids out there
that are n00bs, and think that rushing choke-points by yourself is a good idea, I am going to start
putting together a strategy section for you to read. So here is Part I of my Counter-Strike Strategy Guide.
This Part I of the guide will cover very basic military theory (I ripped this from Wikipedia). In the
coming weeks I will get into more specific strategies for Counter-Strike, i.e. strategies specific for 5-man teams
and strategies specifically for de_dust 2. If all you n00bs out there read these strategies then maybe
when you are about to run through that choke-point with the bomb only to get AWPed in the face .....you will consider
not getting AWPed in the face.

Counter-Strike Strategy Guide.


I. Universal Military Tactics

Contents:
1. Universal Military Tactics
2. Encirclement
3. Overwhelming Force
4. Hit and Run Tactics
5. Suppressive Fire
6. Suicide Attack
7. Principles of Battle
7.1 Line Tactics
7.2 Range
7.3 Mobility
7.4 Protection
7.5 Individual Fighting Skills
7.6 Accuracy
7.7 Speed
7.8 Protection of Self
8. Tactical Aphorisms

1. Universal Military Tactics
Military tactics are the tricks used on the battlefield, while conducting a war, to gain success. There are two main ways to defeat an army: by destroying it through fighting, or by cutting off its supplies so that it runs out of weapons, medication, food and drink, and then "starves" to death.
Military tactics (Greek: Taktikē, the art of organizing an army) are the collective name for methods for engaging and defeating an enemy in battle. Changes in philosophy and technology over time have been reflected in changes to military tactics.
Up until the nineteenth century, many military tactics were confined to battlefield concerns, such as how to best maneuver units during combat in open terrain. In current military thought, tactics are the lowest level of planning, involving small units ranging from a few dozen to a few hundred men. Units are organized into formations, comprising a higher level of planning known as the operational use of forces. The third tier of military planning is strategic, which is concerned with the overall means and plan for achieving a long-term outcome. Operational art is thus an intermediate level in which the aim is to convert the strategy (highest level) into tactics (lowest level of planning).
Specialized tactics exist for many situations, ranging from securing a room or individual building, to large-scale operations such as establishing air superiority over a region. Today, military tactics are employed at all levels of command, from individual and group up to entire armed forces. Indeed, the units used in warfare have always been a reflection of current military tactics, and their size and composition have varied accordingly. In British terminology, military tactics involving naval forces are often called naval tactics (cf. usage of military).
The United States Army Field Manual 3-0 offers the following definition of "tactics:" "Tactics – (Department Of Defense) 1. The employment of units in combat. 2. The ordered arrangement and maneuver of units in relation to each other and/or to the enemy in order to use their full potentialities. (Army) The employment of units in combat. It includes the ordered arrangement and maneuver of units in relation to each other, the terrain, and the enemy in order to translate potential combat power into victorious battles and engagements. (FM 3-0)."
Within the scope of war, the US military generally defines three levels of war; 1. the strategic which includes both the National level and the Combatant Command (theater) level; 2. the operational level, which extends from the level of a joint task force including the combined forces of naval and air power with amphibious and ground operation to the maneuver brigade echelon; and 3. the tactical echelon that extends from the maneuver brigade to the lowest fighting elements including individual soldiers.
Common military tactics include frontal assaults, attempts to flank the enemy, keeping troops in reserve and the use of ambushes. Often deception in the form of military camouflage or misdirection using decoys, are used to confuse the enemy. Another major military tactic is trench warfare. This was mainly employed in World War I in the Battle of Gallipoli and the western front. Trench warfare often turned to a stalemate, because in order to attack an enemy entrenchment soldiers had to run through an exposed "no man's land" under heavy fire from an entrenched enemy.

2. Encirclement
In both cases, encirclement is a good idea. When fighting, an encircled army is being hit from many angles at once, making it difficult to fight back effectively. Also, encirclement cuts off supplies. Therefore, encirclement is one of the most central tactics used in warfare. But encirclement is not always the most beneficial course of action. Flanking is a form of partial encirclement.

3. Overwhelming Force
Second to encirclement comes the tactic of overwhelming force concentrated on a weaker part of the opponent's army, attacking by surprise so the enemy is not even ready to face the threat. Human wave attack was one such tactic. With this tactic, encirclement is not necessary, since the attackers can destroy the opponent with one powerful blow, and then regroup and go on to overwhelm other parts of the enemy's army (also known as "defeat in detail"). Surprise and concealing the attacking army's location, movements, and intentions are critical for success with this kind of tactic, since it depends on the defending army to have spread out thinly, not knowing where to expect the attack, while the attackers concentrate their forces in one location and destroy all in their way.
In order to make the opponent spread his or her forces out thinly, the attackers using this tactic need to keep the defender ignorant of their exact whereabouts, intentions, and where they will attack next. This can be very difficult to do since the opponent will often be able to see where the attacking army is amassing its forces, and he or she will respond by amassing his or her forces opposite to that build-up, thereby countering the attackers' build-up. Thus, this tactic is normally only employed when the attacking army is much stronger than the one defending, so even if the defender amasses his or her forces opposite the offensive army, he or she still cannot face up to the attacker.

4. Hit and Run Tactics
If one side (usually the defender in familiar territory) is much weaker than their opponent, they may break their army up into small groups, so that there is no way the army can be destroyed in one blow. They can then send the groups at the attacker from different angles, where and when they are not expected, to cause damage and then quickly flee before the attacker has a chance to respond effectively or catch them. These tactics are also called 'Guerrilla Tactics'.
To respond to these kinds of tactics, the larger army has to perform reconnaissance of some kind; throughout history this has usually been by sending out parties of soldiers to find out where the enemy's groups are hiding, and then destroy them one by one. This can become almost impossible if the guerrillas are hiding in jungles, forests, mountains, cities and so on, and they have no permanent homes to defend. Throughout history, many large and powerful armies have been weakened by small, wandering, guerrilla armies; one well known example is the British royalists, who were weakened by American revolutionaries using guerrilla tactics.
These hit and run tactics can also be useful for large armies; while the vast majority of the army is in a defensive position on the front lines, small groups of raiders with demolitions and other "exotic" weaponry can destroy well fortified positions which could have weakened the main regiment had it attacked in force.

5. Suppressive Fire
Applying heavy firepower to pin down an enemy is useful to discourage the enemy from firing at the attacker. When the enemy is pinned in his shelter from suppressive fire, another soldier can engage the enemy taking cover by flanking around, past the line of fire, to near the sheltered enemy's front. This tactic became especially effective after the invention of rapid-fire weaponry.

6. Suicide Attack
These are simply attacks in which the combatant is expected to be sacrificed; one famous example of suicide attackers is the Japanese kamikaze in World War II. Suicide attacks can be especially effective for several reasons: Since the combatant is intended to be sacrificed, no provisions in equipment, training, and infrastructure need to be made for the combatant's long-term survival and return. Suicide tactics can also be used to greatly increase the effective technological sophistication of a weapon. It could be said that a kamikaze bomber was effectively an optically guided, autonomous cruise missile, a technology that would not appear for many years after WWII.


7. Principles of Battle
7.1 Line Tactics
A common tactic used primarily when armies face off, is the usage of line tactics. Line tactics generally involves the use of long lines of army forces facing the enemy with the goal of stopping the enemy from surrounding the troops. The difference in spacing of forces determines how the enemy will respond to the usage of this tactic. There is always a weakness in the use of line tactics though. Spreading the troops too thin will make it easy for the enemy to use the Overwhelming Force tactic. However, heavily concentrated troops let the enemy surround and eventually destroy the surrounded troops. There is no exact best way to use the tactic, which has led to several books detailing how best to use it.

7.2 Range
Armies, when they draw up their lines, draw them up slightly out of range of the enemy's weapons. This has always been the case throughout history. This is so that the soldiers remain safe until the army is ready to engage the enemy. As soon as any group of soldiers advances closer to the enemy line, it is said to have come 'within range', and it can be destroyed by the enemy. However, if the enemy does not notice its advance, either because it remains hidden and advances secretly, or advances so quickly the enemy cannot react fast enough, this group of soldiers might be able to inflict significant damage on the enemy. If this group of attacking soldiers destroys the enemy soldiers opposite it, then other soldiers can follow behind the group and rush through the gap in the enemy's line, and then turn around to hit the enemy from the rear, creating an encirclement.
Range is an issue which permeates the military arts - even in individual skills, such as boxing, tae kwon do or fencing, range is a crucial issue. It is important to note that no two people, no two platoons, no two armies will have exactly equivalent range and capabilities (assessing these fundamental differences is crucial to strategy, but also important to tactics). A simple way to think of range and its importance is to imagine two boxers confronting each other. Imagine one has arms 6 inches longer than the other. The boxer with longer arms will be able to stand out of the others range, but still hit the opponent. Common military stories of mismatched ranges include the Battle of Agincourt (also Crecy and Poitiers), where English bowmen used longbows to strike knights.

7.3 Mobility
One of the best ways to punch through an opponent's line, or circle around, behind, or over it, is by using transportation devices. Before the invention of the automobile, ground transportation was done mainly on foot or with the aid of animals. Now, tanks, armored personnel carriers, helicopters, boats, planes and parachutes are used. These devices enable soldiers to break enemy lines while the remainder of the army attacks from the front. Transports have always been expensive compared with the cost of foot soldiers, so typically, highly mobile forces have accounted for only a fraction of an army's total strength. Their usefulness comes both from their mobility and, in the case of ground transports, their ability to break through the enemy lines, thereby overwhelming, separating and driving back the enemy. The modern tank is used much like the chariot of ancient battlefields; well-drilled cavalry can give any army an advantage. It has sometimes been argued that mobility serves primarily for movement and scouting purposes, but the cavalry of any age is designed firstly and fore mostly to overrun the enemy and break their formation so as to make them far more vulnerable to being overwhelmed. Air mobility is also useful, as a strike from 30,000 feet is difficult to prevent.

7.4 Protection
On the battlefield, protection is very important, for obvious reasons. There are several methods of protection used by armies:
Staying out of range of the enemy's weapons
Hiding from the enemy making it difficult for the enemy to know the location of the attacking forces
Wearing amour which can resist enemy weapons to some degree. The tank is, for example, considered a form of amour.
Building fortifications such as walls, trenches and minefields to stop enemy movement and provide defenses against enemy weapons.
7.5 Individual Fighting Skills
Fighting skills include all of the above, working as part of a team. On the individual level, speed and accuracy are the most important skills of a modern soldier, but in ancient armies, size and strength were indispensable qualities of a successful fighter, as most infantrymen were outfitted with melee weapons rather than firearms.

7.6 Accuracy
Being as accurate as possible so that one army is able to hit the opponent when ideally the opponent is too far away to accurately hit them is a critical skill. Remember that armies tend to stay out of range, so if one side can accurately hit their enemy at a long range, they will have a big advantage. This takes lots of practice, and the development of better weapons technology.

7.7 Speed
It is critical to hit the opponent first. This means an army must attempt to act faster than their opponent. And, as mentioned above, an army must be accurate even though working at such a high speed. Therefore, the development of speed and accuracy better than one's opponents takes endless practice. One's opponents may be practicing just as much as them, so an army can never stop training and improving their skills.
Also, speed may be used to substitute for a lack of resources. If an army does not have enough resources to fight a war for 6 months, it can move with speed and finish the war in 3 months using a lesser amount of supplies.

7.8 Protection of Self
It should also be noted that all the 'protection' skills listed above apply as well to the individual soldier. So training in self-protection on the battlefield is critical, just as training to work as a unit and to be effective with weaponry are.

8. Tactical Aphorisms
These are not complete tactics or strategies in of themselves but aphorisms for a commander to bear in mind when formulating a battle plan.
"No battle plan survives contact with the enemy".Helmuth von Moltke the Elder
"To be strong everywhere, is to be weak everywhere". (see Concentration of effort)
"Starve failure, reinforce success".
"God is on the side of the big battalions".
"Don't interrupt the enemy when he's making a mistake".(attributed to Napoleon)
"With this war is made". Napoleon speaking with regard to artillery, an endorsement of the concentrating of fire power.
"Knowing the terrain you are fighting on, is crucial for fighting for it".
"Victory goes to the side with the biggest reserves".
"Better to refrain from action than to do your enemy a small injury". Machiavelli, the Prussians had the similarly intentioned "Smash don't tickle."
"An army marches on its stomach", the Chinese had the similar "Provisions should be in place before an army moves." both stress the importance of logistics.
"If you know your enemy, and you know yourself, then victory shall be yours." Sun Tzu.(See Military intelligence)
"A cornered enemy fights the hardest.", and "Don't force a dog into a cul de sac."
"Controlling the air, will give a huge advantage, and will raise morale".
"All other things being equal, an attacker needs a three to one superiority in numbers to break a fortified enemy." (traditional)
"If you're losing a battle, the superior strategy is retreat." Sun Tzu,The Art of War.
"Discretion is the better part of valor."
"He who fights and runs away, lives to fight another day."
"For to win one hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill. To subdue the enemy without fighting is the acme of skill." Sun Tzu

Friday, July 13, 2007

Finding the Right Counterstrike Clan

So you've been playing CS for a long time. 1.6 is old hat. Like it more than CS:S, but Source is pretty good too. Play the mods, pub and scrim. Your XFire logs are causing integer overflows.

You play in a "clan" with a bunch of your college counterstrike buddies. You play in a "clan" with a bunch of your high school counterstrike buddies. Maybe you are in the counterstrike groups on facebook and myspace. You post on GotFrag (but don't like that it was bought out). You have a handful of forums you frequent. But you still don't have a solid clan of semi-pro players.

Where does a hardcore gamer find clan members?

Where did you find your counterstrike clan members?