How Do You Learn To Comm Properly?

Soul_RiderSoul_Rider Mod Bean Join Date: 2004-06-19 Member: 29388Members, Constellation, Squad Five Blue
I've been playing NS for about 6 months now and have decided to have a go in "The Chair". There is always a right way to learn things and a wrong way, I would like help in teaching me the right way to learn how to comm. If anyone can give me advice that will help me with this i would be most grateful.


  • MrGarrisonMrGarrison Join Date: 2004-09-08 Member: 31522Members
    first you need to memorize the hotkeys.
    if your on a seige map then first you drop i.p's and then armory.
    ns. map do what ever you think is a good thing that will help your team and keep them from dieing. never give that one or two guys who spam on there mic. always asking for better guns.if you just dont answer them they'll stop.
    ok hope that helps at all.
    have fun
  • zerwalterzerwalter Join Date: 2003-08-05 Member: 19023Members, Constellation
    You simply have to practice. Sometimes, you will find someone who can give you tips on what to do and what not to do in certain situations. The only real way to learn is by commanding yourself and experimenting by yourself. Unfortunately, many servers online disapprove of inexperienced commanders so you may have to take a little heat. But, eventually, you will learn enough to win on public servers most of the time.

    If you are unfamiliar with the basics of NS and of commanding, (such as the tech trees for both sides and the hotkeys) I suggest that you read a guide or two on commanding and the revised NS manual. (Both can be found with forum searches.)
  • DragonMechDragonMech Join Date: 2003-09-19 Member: 21023Members, Constellation, Reinforced - Shadow
    Go to the servers that are made to train on - they usually have alien bots and you can learn the basics against easy opponents. #NSLearn is also an excellent way to learn.

    Some other tips I see from good commanders:

    1) Get armor 1 as fast as possible. It really can extend the life of your marines several fold.
    2) If a marine asks for a welder but does not spam requests for it (and only asks when you have sufficient resources) give it to him. Chances are he will use it heavily to seal/open weldables and repair his teammate's armor.
    3) Talk to your team - communication is vital to the marines. Your marines depend on you to know what is happening in the game.
    4) Learn the hotkeys and learn to drop medpacks in a hurry.

    Finally, the biggest tip I can give you is this: have a flexible strategy planned out. Know what you are going to do when the game starts, but be open to changes to it if neccesary.

    Good luck. <!--emo&:)--><img src='' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='smile-fix.gif' /><!--endemo-->
  • theclamtheclam Join Date: 2004-08-01 Member: 30290Members
    Learn on siege maps.
    They have a very limited number of viable strategies and a build order set in iron.
    They will help you learn your way around the chair. Once seige maps become easy/boring, switch to a regular map.
  • UnipacUnipac Join Date: 2003-01-27 Member: 12864Members, Constellation
    Pay attention to experienced commanders and see what they do. You can learn a lot just by being commanded by a competent commander.

    Remembering the hotkeys is very important. Watch your mini-map to see where your marines are going. The faster you drop a res node, the less time they'll spend just standing there waiting for you. Learning the tech tree is absolutely essential.

    Learn the maps. You can't be a good commander when you don't know the maps. By this, I mean where all the res nodes are, where the hives are, what are good siege spots, etc.

    Learn to listen for the hive right at the beginning of the game. I know you can't listen for the res node anymore, but you can listen to skulks moving away from the hive. You usually have about 5-7 seconds to listen for skulks at the beginning of the game. I usually drop an armory and ip to keep my marines busy while I go off and try to listen for skulks. Knowing where the hive is can be very advantageous as your experienced marines will know where to go to kill those gorges dropping res nodes. Give some of your other marines orders to cap the res nodes on the other side of the map.

    That's pretty much the basics of what you need. All the advanced strategies will come from learning from good commanders.
  • ZaggyZaggy NullPointerException The Netherlands Join Date: 2003-12-10 Member: 24214Forum Moderators, NS2 Playtester, Reinforced - Onos, Subnautica Playtester
    You can try everything out if you make a server yourself, use cheats like sv_cheats 1 and givepoints and bigdig, and perhaps some bots.

    Furthermore you could try commanding at random pubs, don't care about they calling you noob, because you will improve.

    Have some friends/nice people to guide you around. Try servers of you own country.
  • semipsychoticsemipsychotic Join Date: 2003-07-09 Member: 18061Members
    edited November 2004
    Experience is the best way to do things. Also, the next time you run around as a soldier (or an alien, for that matter) in an NS map, pay attention to what the commander does. Find out what works and what doesn't. Learn from his mistakes so you don't have to make them.

    When you find some good strategies that can carry you places, be sure to use your noodle and add a creative twist to them. If you come up with something new, you may just catch the aliens totally off-guard.
  • CombatJoeCombatJoe Join Date: 2003-09-11 Member: 20768Members
    After six months of playing you should know the inns and outs of being a groundpounder. Hopefully you've also been taking notice of what the typical commander does or aims for. Also, it's beneficial to know the inns and outs of the kharaa as well.

    The number one thing that will get you ejected from the chair is: Not doing anything.

    At some point you're going to be bogged down in requests, you just aren't able to deal with them fast enough and efficiently enough. This is expected, don't worry. It happens to just about everyone; they have a panic attack and just lock up.

    When someone reminds you that the armory or arms lab isn't upgrading and that you're sitting on 50+ resources, or if two marines are waiting for a resource nozzle or a crucial phase gate, you have to be on the ball for those requests. Wether it's telling them to "Hold on" or "No," you have to give SOME indication that you aren't doing nothing. Over time you'll be able to decide what requests are good ones and what requests should wait or be denied. You'll be able to get things done faster and be able to move on. Don't expect this at the start though.

    Your marines can see if you have started an upgrade or dropped a structure. If 10 seconds goes by with nothing hapening after several requests have been repeated... that's when they reach for the eject button. When they can see or hear that you're doing things elsewhere, they will often be more patient.

    I've played a lot of games with a lot of people. I've seen a lot of good marines jump into the chair for the first time and exit the chair halfway through the game because they just couldn't deal with the stress of multitasking.
  • UnipacUnipac Join Date: 2003-01-27 Member: 12864Members, Constellation
    Oh and one more thing.

    Nothing is more annoying than having a commander that doesn't communicate with his team.

    Whether it be giving out orders over voice comm or by text, keep your marines informed of what's happening. (ie. RT under attack, phase into the hive, weapon 2 upgrades are coming, etc)
  • PanguinsPanguins Join Date: 2004-06-28 Member: 29600Members
    Just dl bots and make your own server. You can always go in gorgy hideout and **** em off by going in com chair...

    (u'll get ejected in no time tho)
  • Ice9Ice9 Join Date: 2004-06-09 Member: 29208Members
    Listen. "Research completed." is a key sound, hit the space-bar (or your jump key) to go to that building, and begin research. Also, make hotkeys.

    To make a building a hotkey (1 - 5), hold CTRL (or your crouch key) and a number (1 to 5). The building will appear on the top of the HUD also, very useful for quick scanning or upgrades.

    I have trouble commanding, I often loose. I don't know how, but I end up losing.
  • AcidophilusAcidophilus Join Date: 2004-10-17 Member: 32307Members
    If you find yourself being flooded by people, you should bind the following keys for quick responses:

    bind "[" "say_team Ok"
    bind "]" "say_team No"
    bind "p" "say_team Wait."
    bind "o" "say_team Phase thru NOW!"
    bind "l" "say_team MARINE SPAWN UNDER ATTACK!"

    if you don't like ok or no, you could use Affirmative or Negative.
    however long words look like binds and marines may ignore you.

    Also, the word "no" when directed at you seems rude, so you may not want to use it.

    I find the four letter word: Wait. works wonders.
    bind the wait word to your mouse 3 .
  • AmplifierAmplifier Join Date: 2004-02-19 Member: 26708Members, Constellation
    game start:
    arms lab -> a1

    Work your way through the map, cap nodes, get upgrades as you go. Memorize the hotkeys for ammo/meds, you will need them. If your doing nothing else, hover over your marines with meds, just to be ready. Don't overmed/undermed (experience teaches). When it comes down to w2/armory upg. Go for the armory. Trust me. Hmgs rape everything. w2/a1 can carry a team of marines with hmgs very far. Dont go for w3 before a2 unless you have hella res. Dont ever go jps in pubs, you will lose. Never go for the first hive when the second is going up.

    Those are some hints and tips.

    The hardest part of commanding is protecting base and base rushes. Game depends on the base, and sometimes the commander has to choose, beacon and RUIN positions on the field or roll the dice and hop out of the chair. NEVER get out of the chair without an obs in base, UNLESS YOU KNOW FOR 100% what is in base. Never beacon when you can drop a pg, same price, and you dont lose positions. Try not to beacon to a single skulk.

    I could go on forever
  • AmplifierAmplifier Join Date: 2004-02-19 Member: 26708Members, Constellation
    Oh and I almost forgot, here are two of my demos, both pretty good ones:
    <a href='' target='_blank'></a>

    <a href='' target='_blank'></a>
  • TimmythemoonpigTimmythemoonpig Join Date: 2003-11-08 Member: 22407Members
    There's alot of very nice commanding manuals on the frontiersmen strategy forum on this site, have a look through them..

    Here's a quick run-down from start to finish of a typical game I would command on Veil..(2 hive lock)

    This is the plan, get RT's, get Phase Tech, electrify the first hive, drop a Phase Gate and turrets in the second hive, upgrade, upgrade, upgrade.

    I say 'I'll comm' at the countdown and then I sprint past marines and hop into comm chair, I use hotkeys to drop an ip and armory very quickly, if the hotkeys scare you, just learn a quick formula for now, e.g. hitting Q then A will select an RT quickly to pop down...

    I can type very fast so I will say something like 'GET RTS 1 stay in base' then I listen for the hives, just use the minimap click outside the hives to hear the pitter patter of skulks...

    My plan is to lock 2 hives, its simple and it works v well on Veil, the fades won't be able to heal themselves and most important the gorges can't bilebomb and onos's can't stomp, so its great if you can lock down both hives and not too hard to learn for new commanders...

    After the marines build the ip and armory and I listen and say 'Hive is pipeline' (the far right one) I watch the little dots moving on my minimap, marines will reach the first RT's which I place just as they arrive, I also say 'get to sub pls' I want the marines to go to Sub hive which is the far LEFT hive furthest away from PIPELINE I want them to lock that hive and get all the RTS on the way..

    While they are on their way, I get the guy in base to build ARMS LAB (25)and OBSERVATORY (20), the res coming in isn't so fast but I get armor1 (20) and phase tech (15) by this time marines are in Sub hive...I want to hold this hive but I want to keep the marines moving before they split up...

    It takes awhile but mentally you will get a picture of your marines and they split up like this...rambo's, teamplayers, retards and can't do anything about noobs they are spaced, retards have played for ages but are still rubbish and they will be screaming for upgrades, rambo's are ok but they go off skulk hunting, it's the teamplayers you want and they will be at SUB, they know the game and they do what you ask, you keep these guys alive......

    When a marine requests ammo he hits a button, you can hit a button to go to him straight away, same with medpacks, so I have F1 bound to an ammo request and F2 bound to medpack request, no matter what I am doing ..if I hear 'i need some ammo here' I hit F1 go to the marine and drop him some ammo, this is how I keep my teamplayers alive...

    When they get to SUB hive, phase tech isn't done yet but they are all still alive so I just drop an RT and a Turret Factory (you need the TF to electrify the RT) and I get them to move on, this keeps them flowing, I save for a little while and then I electrify the RT (30)...

    Now I want them to get to the 2nd hive (CARGO) but I know they come to a junction and they will be tempted to go to double res, so I type in alot 'good work lads, get to cargo asap' 'go go' 'cargo all pls' herding them into cargo...

    Getting the 2nd hive will be tricky, there's more of a scrap for it, I drop the structures one at a time and by now I will have Phase Gate (15) and the res is coming in quite fast, I'll drop the phase gate, then the Turret Factory (don't worry too much about positioning the stuff now, you'll learn that later) I'll drop about 4 turrets and maybe an armory (10). then finally when it's safe the RT...

    There'll be a backmarker somewhere near SUB and I'll get him to drop a PG and now I'm set, the aliens will attack relentlessly, what I need to just do now is upgrade....
    Typically I get weapons1, then I drop a welder and shotgun to the best teamplayer
    and a shotgun maybe to the rambo guy, it's about time for fades so I like to have shotguns out, but I have the 2 hives locked and I am typing in 'keep phasing, protect hives, ups soon'...

    Depending on the alien team I go for heavy armor or just shotguns or hmgs or whatever, the key is to hold the 2 hives, I'll try and get double now, just tightening the noose, pushing the aliens right back into their hive...

    There's a million things that can go wrong and what I've just described is a nice happy nothing-goes-wrong game, you even get marine teams that are so retarded its impossible to win....

    Veil is a lovely map to command because its uncluttered by lifts has nice open corridors and the layout is simple to understand, the only technical thing you need to know is that every hive is gasable by lerks from vents...

    Finally...learn to be firm and have thick skin.....marines are like kids and they will look for your weaknesses and will whine for upgrades and guns, but if you are firm, place structures quickly, and have a good plan they will respond better, fight better and whinge less....
  • HazeHaze O RLY? Join Date: 2003-07-07 Member: 18018Members, Constellation
    Gah. Theres nothing to it, honostly. Try anything that sounds outragious and infeasable as a real stratigy, only the slimmest chance of working, and put it into action. Relocate right outside the hive, have two bases, turret farm certain areas of the map, do a rush through a vent by having someone boost your entire team in there, hit and run attack the hive, anything that sounds like it would be fun to <b>command!</b>

    Oh and uh, one quick tip: Dont ever ask your troops for anything. Order them. Come on a random server in a different name and start yelling at people like the drill sargent from the ninth hell. Just make sure to ease up a bit... we had oen guy that did that to us, and we made fun of him the whole time. He called us ... in ... incompetent! *gasp*
  • UnipacUnipac Join Date: 2003-01-27 Member: 12864Members, Constellation
    I also find that some commanders don't upgrade early enough. If the other team has fades and you still have vanilla marines running around, you know you're in bad shape.

    I try and have weapon 2 and armor 1 by the time they have fades, since that's the point in the game where the momentum can shift either way. (ie. fades killing everyone and everything or your marines taking down the fades and they don't have any other higher lifeforms to fight back your upgraded marines)
  • ReKReK Join Date: 2004-08-30 Member: 31058Members, Constellation, Reinforced - Shadow, WC 2013 - Silver
    For at least two good guides to commanding, check out <a href='' target='_blank'>NSLearn</a>. After that it's just a matter of getting used to the hotkeys and groups, and experience.
  • God_KillerGod_Killer Join Date: 2004-02-16 Member: 26592Members
    Small games = Rush jp/ha, don't protect hives till you kill one
    Big games = Upgrades, rush motion tracking

    The rest, when you ear something, press spacebar.
  • master_wongmaster_wong Join Date: 2004-11-05 Member: 32649Members
    try my plan...

    build 6 or 8 ips, in 20 something player game. get an armory, upgrade to grenade. arms lab and upgrade everything, also dont forget motion tracking and phase. tell ur team to go into a suicide mission into the hive. never give them health, only some ammo, if they ask u for a gun, forget it. althought, they die way too often, they get spawned often. aliens cannot defeat endless waves of mraines with grenade suicide bombing.
  • Soul_RiderSoul_Rider Mod Bean Join Date: 2004-06-19 Member: 29388Members, Constellation, Squad Five Blue
    Thanks for all the tips guys, currently i'm just practising the hotkeys and stuff on my own server, anyone know where i can download some bots to make it more interesting?

    I would like to do some bot practice, then out into the real world
  • FFTwhiteknightFFTwhiteknight Join Date: 2004-11-16 Member: 32819Members
    i would just like to add it is harder of marines to win in small game. so try to find larger games to pratices on. the RFK comes a lot faster so you have more res to work with. plus with more marines running around the map the more likely they will stay together. you may so think about change you name for when you com. <!--emo&:0--><img src='' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='wow.gif' /><!--endemo--> <!--emo&:)--><img src='' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='smile-fix.gif' /><!--endemo--> <!--emo&::asrifle::--><img src='' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='asrifle.gif' /><!--endemo-->

    there is the hivemind bots link

    <a href='' target='_blank'></a>
  • SkySky Join Date: 2004-04-23 Member: 28131Members
    edited November 2004
    <!--QuoteBegin-Unipac+Nov 4 2004, 01:32 PM--></div><table border='0' align='center' width='95%' cellpadding='3' cellspacing='1'><tr><td><b>QUOTE</b> (Unipac @ Nov 4 2004, 01:32 PM)</td></tr><tr><td id='QUOTE'><!--QuoteEBegin--> Pay attention to experienced commanders and see what they do. You can learn a lot just by being commanded by a competent commander. <!--QuoteEnd--></td></tr></table><div class='postcolor'><!--QuoteEEnd-->
    best piece of advice right here.

    also, you should be a good marine before you com. not aim-wise or anything like that; I mean tactics-wise, knowing what you want your com to drop or what he should research and when. Pay attention to those icons in the top-left of your screen, telling you when your com starts researching something, when he drops what, etc.

    And I have to disagree with whiteknight. Don't try to com a 10 v 10 game first. It's just too confusing. You'll have guys running in every direction, people spamming you with requests for rts, idiots whining at you for shotties, older players yelling at you to hurry up with the meds/ammo/pg, it's just a mess. 8v8 for starters, maximum. Preferably 6v6 or 7v7.
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