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Ethics in TA
Ethics are something that I have not seen discussed very much within the community on any formal basis.

What follows is my small contribution which I hope will guide those who are new to the game, and perhaps inform those whose current practices may be too wayward, or indeed too mild mannered! Many are quotes I admire, and I conclude with a speel of my own :)

After all TA is not just a game, it is a war!
The holistic approach
Motto: My motto is ... I am Fair-Play, but only before and after the battle.

This means: Use the advantage you have to win, whatever it may be... but keep your calm and never take any game seriously when you're back in the chat room. War is war, and for me everything is permitted (except cheat of course... you cant cheat in a real war), so I accept comm rushers, flash rushers etc... cos I know there are times you have to use cheap tactics to win. And if the other guy isn't prepared to be comm rushed for example... good players are prepared for everything. I can stop them... so learn to do it too. And in the chat room: remember it was a game. You could say it wasn't a fun game, but I think the other guy had a fun one, and is laughing at you cos you're whining. So learn from his tactic and kick his ass next time.
On comm rushing
[Comments on GD2 (1v1) map tactics]

On small maps aggressive comm action often occurs. On a map like Sherwood if you expand to the middle for the metal and find a guardian being built what do i do? Walk away and wait for 7 Min's and for it to start firing. Pull ya head in. Try and capture the con unit first. If not possible D-gun the Guardian an con unit and get on with the game. So its OK for my opponent to walk his comm straight to the middle and reclaim the Ooloks and guard out a guardian on my side of the statue. My troops are repeatedly D-gunned as they try to harass him. Am i supposed to let him just build there. Sorry but no chance. I defend my ground with my comm. Everything else was D-gunned by him. I D-gun the guardian but my comm get taken out by his other guardian which takes him out with me. To me i am not a comm rusher. If the dude calls me a comm rusher then what is he?. But nah i will just sit there, let him build where he wants and lose. Yeah right. I try to keep my comm out of the middle but if my opponent does so then why cant i. I am all for aggressive comm use. Many people don't like it and call it comm rushing. I don't go walking my comm half the map and start D-gunning factories. You venture too close early on to me and your fair game for my comm. You put a plant up in my face and i will try to capture it. If not possible it gets D-gunned.
On flash rushing
[Comments on flash and peewee use]

Whiners and terrible players often confuse "getting flash rushed" and having your opponent make 5 flashes and strategically destroying all your metal-extractors/con-vech's/energy producers.

Don't confuse the two and you are on the road to superior multi-player. Flash Rush is a silly term... If you ever see anybody use the term "rusher" after a game, it is MY PERSONAL OPINION that you should never play another game with them cause you wont get any better... The game is about speed and early game domination... because you have to expand on 1k1k.

The whole negative aspect of using flashes is just some horse crap a loser made up one day cause he got smoked when he tried to play TA on his 9 baud "blazer" modem. With Cables and DSL now becoming more popular the amount of flashes needed to cause lag is getting to be nil in early game.

And peewees are not to be underestimated... because they cost less .. in a 2v2 game if you and your pard both make peewees it is very unlikely that a single opponent can stop a combined horde of those little SOB's before either him or his base is up in smoke, if the guy has a laser tower just patrol around and cap his con-vech's not letting him do anything for a while as you lay claim to the map... simple.

Also early laser tower defense in standard TA is not a good idea... cause the LLT costs 200 metal and that means you are going to be slower than everybody else when it comes to expanding.
A note on 'Lag'
[Comments on lag with bombers]

"...the primary reason for TA being an offensive game is that lag aids attacking players and burdens the defender."
My speel - you knew it was coming :)
Obviously I agree fairly closely with the sentiments I have chosen to include here. I certainly make liberal use of the commanders firepower, battlefield mobility, and durability. However, I do consider the limiting case to be the d-gunning of my opponents just because they get in range, and the tactic of running into their base and d-gunning all their plants (though desperation can lead to any tactic ;D ).

I also regard the flash as being one of the best (if not the best) unit in TA. It is highly versatile in all stages of a predominately land based game. It is no wonder that when I play CORE I thank my stars there are so few players that use the unit as effectively as they might :P

While the 'lag' issue alluded too above can be associated with the use of flash, its details remain more clouded in myth. "Your units wont die!" is certainly not the most uncommon complaint in TA. But what causes this? Well, in short, packet loss. When units are damaged and killed, damage and kill packets of data are sent from player to player. Unfortunately if one player has a crappy connection they may either not receive some damage/kill packets or fail to transmit the odd unit death packet. These and other dropped packets can lead to frustrating, and sometimes completely bizarre occurrences in the game. (Units models can even be switched if net id's are dropped at game loading!)

What I want to be made aware is that a lagging player (in terms of the +clock .time return) is not necessarily dropping packets (time lag is mostly due to a slow CPU and/or insufficient RAM), and that non-lagging players could actually be dropping packets.

In tournament games, or anywhere where player skills are evenly matched, the level of packet loss can actually be the deciding factor. The battle room TA Demo Recorder commands .pltest <name> and .plresults can be a good indicator of packet loss to be expected.

In any case, if you are attacking with aircraft, flash or just general massed units, you will be placing greater stress on your hardware. This means packet loss is more likely and that the defender is burdened with facing an attack that may be stronger than first appears.
Smurfing for Puritans
"Smurfing" in the gaming world has to do with well-known 'legitimate' players creating and playing under an otherwise unknown name. This is generally frowned upon as being somewhat deceptive or just lame. I propose however, that it results in the purest test of skill. Think about it, you could say the Smurfing player is at an advantage over the other play in terms of what to expect. Well sure, but how much does the 'legit' player back themselves? I guess it all depends on your outlook, but I expect to be good enough to be able to take on all comers and at least put up a meagre fight. How else will we learn? By playing the same 5 players over and over every time? The point of this ramble follows from this statement, even if you are playing one of these 5 same guys but now they are Smurfing you, you know it won't be the same game. If you don't know who you are playing, you will be drawing from all your experience.

To date, my experience of Smurfs is quite positive. To beat someone Smurfing you who you might otherwise be wary of is of course rather nice :) I think players who are over wary of Smurfs suffer from confidence problems, where knowing who they can beat is more important then being a good player.

The flip-side of course is being the Smurf. This is a good idea to protect your legit name while trying stupid new strat's that are probably never going to work but are hella fun to just try ;) You might also want to play people you have previously alienated under another name ;P

To finish up I have described a Smurfing situation as being a great test of skill for the legitimate player. Surely the purest test of raw skill is where 2 Smurfing players battle it out! A game where otherwise similarly matched players are ignorant of one-another's skill levels is sure to be a heart pounding, sweat-on-the brow event. And that's what TA is all about, isn't it? So I say "Bring on the Smurfs! Legitimacy be dammed!"

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