Before you actually read any further; You are probably one of those players who know all about railing. Good for you. If you think you know every aspect of railing allready, please leave this page. Also, I really do not need any comments like: ‘I knew this allready!‘. Cause if you do, you’re probably a railing god. Cya.
For those of you who think they might just learn ‘something’ from this guide, (even if it was just 1 little thing), I congratulate you for being as curious as you are. I suggest you read on!
A long long time ago I visited the legendary CTF & DM Clan KING‘s homepage and found some kind of railguide wrote by b0se. First I want to thank him for writing the guide in the first place, and for making me understand how to use the railgun more effectively.
After I read his guide, i felt the need to change some things for the better. So I rewrote, added / removed things. The layout was also changed. This guide is the result. I hope you’ll enjoy reading.Now the time has come to pass this pressious knowledge on to the next generation.
Frames per second
Fps: The more you get, the smoother you’ll rail. How do I get ‘more’ fps? Consider yourself lucky; Not only are you reading this article about railing, but there is also a guy who really did a great job writing a guide for maximum fps performance. Need more fps? 3Fingers is the place to be. (If that url is down, get it here.)
Set your monitor refresh rate as high as possible, you can achieve this by installing the correct drivers for you specific monitor. This will enable you to set your monitor refresh rate as high as possible. Why you ask? It will make your Quake II look smoother, simple.
Field of vision
The default fov is 90; Most of the proffesional players (80%?) use this fov. There still are a lot of players who use a value like 110 or 120. The advantage of an high fov, is offcourse visabilty, disadvantage is that you actually ‘zoom out’ of the center of your screen-image, so the player on screen ‘look smaller’. I suggest you use any fov you like.
At first, you want to make sure you have a good mouse. Good mice are: Logitech mice. In case you DO own a logitech mouse, make sure you download their newest drivers.
When you install logitech drivers for the first time, your mouse speed is set to 5. Also acceleration is set to LOW. My windows mouse speed is 5. (Logitech default). I play with acceleration off.
I advise you to also turn mouse acceleration OFF!. “Oh yeah? Why“!? Here’s why.
Use any mousepad you please. I myself prefer a 3M mousepad. I advise you not to use a vinyl mousepad, since your mouse attracts dirt like hell using a vinyl mousepad.
Whether you DO or DO NOT own a logitech mouse, check if your mouse is a ps2-mouse (little round plug, 5 pins), and if it is, download ps2rate here. Run the program and set it to 200hz, make 200hz it’s default.
PS/2 rate is not needed for USB mice. USB mice are better than PS/2-mice, because they run at 125hz, sustained. So with no rate changes while moving the mouse. Ps2rate runs 200hz at top, but actually fluctuates between 100 and 200 hz. A detailed explanation of ‘hz-theory’ can not only be found on this page. (Ps2rate) But there’s another real good visual example on the razer boomslang technology pagehere.
Anyway, make sure your mouse is CLEAN from the in and outside. The rollers on the inside of the mouse may have dirt or dust on them; If so, REMOVE it quickly! :) Use fingernails (and) or alcohol to clean your mouse.
Important: Don’t keep changing your sensitivity, just try to find out what sensitivity you like, and thenSTICK WITH IT! Now, when you have followed all instructions above, let’s find out a good sensitivity value for YOU!
How do I know what sensitivity is good for me? Well, that’s not too difficult, here we go: Start up Quake II, load a map, and set your mouse sensitivity to such a low value, with which you can make a nice clean 180 degrees turn, without having problems with your mousepad.
Now, test those 180’s, and adjust your mouse-sensitivity to your best 180 degrees turn-performance. Make sure you remember that sensitivity, or even better: set it in your cfg file! It takes about 2-3 weeks to actually get used to your preferred sensitivity value.
Faster connection equals to easier railing. (Note!: This is best noticable at reflex rails, which are possible on an hpb connection though ;]). However, whatever your connection might be you’ll find these link(s) VERY USEFUL to optimize your connection and get the best out of it: www.speedguide.net. And also you should take a look at www.optimizing.net.
A good railer has more than just one method for railing his opponent. Here are the most important methods you can apply when railing:
– Reflex aiming –
This is the hardest technique, it requires a sensitivity value that YOU are used to, NOT what some other good railer uses. It takes about 2-3 weeks to actually get *used* to your preferred sensitivity value. Once you have, you will find that your hand movement on the mouse will have adapted to the movement on-screen. Once this has happened I would recommend starting up Quake II, and putting any DM map on (no bots or opponents).
Stand somewhere (stand still)and designate yourself certain targets or objects. Without aiming at them, try and just instantly POINT (snap) your crosshair on this object, and successfully shoot it. (Whether its a mark on a wall or a collectable item).
When you succeed most of the time reflex aiming while standing still, try the same technique whilerunning, jumping and falling. MUCH harder than it sounds. It will take about 2 weeks to get a ‘base’ skill apparent.
Once you have become reasonably good at this, single player game, type ‘give all’ and choose the railgun. Complete the game using ONLY this weapon.
– Strafe railing –
This is easily the most reliable method, but has to be adapted to your average latency; aka. ping. Just say, the enemy is strafing across the arena / area, your reflex shots are failing you, as you are either having a bad day or are just to impatient to practice. What do you do? It’s simple. Note the direction the enemy is strafing and strafe with him. (In the SAME direction; Doh!)
Now is the time to casually place your crosshair a few millimetres (mm) infront of him and FIRE. Now, the distance mm is controlled by your ping. Example: Let’s say your ping is around 100-150, so you place your crosshair about 5 to 10 mm in front of the enemy. Here’s a table of ‘average‘ distances related to ping. (Experiment to get the ‘feeling’).
– Tripwire aiming –
Don’t try this too much as you’ll find yourself standing still, if against a skilled opponent, he’ll suss you out and kill you everytime you try to apply it in a situation. On the other hand, it can put skilled opponents OFF (and it DOES), as they think they are the master of prediction, if you suddenly stand still for 1/2 of a second during strafing, you’ll find he shoots 30 degrees from your position; Quite amusing. Anyway, on with the technique…
Your enemy is strafing left, right, left, right (etc), but the strafe periods are too small to strafe with him. What do you do? Well, imagine that your crosshair is a ‘tripwire’; a beam from the barrel of your gun to a place in the background. DO NOT try to follow the enemy, let the little sod strafe right into your line of vision, then ‘BaM!’, kill the bastard :).
Now, use the latency / distance table above to help coordinate your firing time. It’s best to stand still while creating a tripwire, unless you are a silky git and can keep your crosshair on a CONSTANT place on a wall in the background, AND strafe. (VERY hard to do effectively). Try to place the tripwire as close to the enemy as possible, the shorter the distance you place it from him, the shorter the time you spend standing still, the better you are at this technique.
– Follow aiming –
Another difficult technique. This involves you keeping your crosshair as near to the enemy as possible at ALL times. When you think you can, note his direction & speed, place your crosshair infront of him (find the distance from the table) and fire. Sounds simple, it’s NOT :). This technique is VERY handy on maps that contain many obstacles, forcing you to jump around a lot like a flitzing rabbit. It is HEAVILY linked with method 1 – the reflex shot.
Combining the four basic techniques
Right, you’ve read the guides and now think you are a railing God, well you are not, PRACTICE is the key to DEFEATING the enemy. Try and use all four techniques when railing, each method is prefered in certain situations. Here are some examples of when to use each method:
1.) Hear a noise behind you, turn and shoot.
1.) You are in a large open area, enemy visible 80% of the time.
1.) Enemy strafes unpredictably; short strafe times.
1.) Current map is uneven; filled with obstacles.
Using an aimbot
Damn you are a TOTAL LAMER who completely defeats the object of having ‘skill’.
Make aiming easier
Try and keep your opponent in the middle of your screen at all times, so when you have to fire you will only need the slightest of adjustment with your mouse. When aiming at an opponent, try only to move your mouse a maximum of 2 cm, giving you a greater chance of aiming correctly.
Jumpy or ducking opponents (general)
This is very frustrating at 1st; When you get a rail on target and your opponent jumps over it or ducks under it. Well this is how to handle this skippy; If the guy likes to jump … instead of aiming at the middle of his body, aim at his head, so when you get a good rail in, it will either hit him in the head or rail his feet off. If the guy likes to duck … well you should be able to figure that one out now. (Hpb’s check here).
If you face a good railer as an opponent & he’s gonna rail you whatever, try and make it harder for him; Constantly change direction, and also don’t move in certain patterns as a good railer will notice you doing this. Try and hide behind objects and time your exit from the object when your opponent is reloading.
Load netgraph up (in console: netgraph 1). Try and time your shots when the line is not red. Also, if you see your netgraph going off the scale, hide for a little while until your connection settles. Ping spikes are a pain in the ass, but when correctly monitored, they are easily avoided.
Anyone with a 300 ping or less can rail just as good as a Lpb… Anything above 300 ping: ‘A waste of time.’
Many of you might think the railgun is a waste of space, and is only good for LPB’s; Well, you are VERYwrong! It’ll take you about 2 weeks of being humiliated and being constantly killed, while you are learning how to properly rail, but those 2 weeks will be worth it. There will be many situations in which, on the brink of death, you’ll pull out your railgun and rail your opponent, and win the match.
Being a Hpb is a challenge not a burden!
A Lpb has a far greater advantage closeup, so try and keep your distance.
Face to face
Try and avoid coming face to face: That’s easy to say, but a lot harder to do. When going down corridors don’t just run in the middle… but stick to a side so your opponent has to aim 1st before raling, this usually gives you the valuable time to out-rail him. Also when moving about in corridors always aim at the places you think an opponent may emerge from…
Strafe and rail
This is the easiest way to rail an opponent; Say your opponent is moving right aim your cursor about 1/2 cm – 3/4 cm to the right of him and strafe right aswell, but keeping your crosshair aimed still. The harder strafe and rail is when you opponent is moving right, but you are strafing left. This is very hard at 1st but with a few weeks pratice you will hopefully get used to this.
– Jumpy opponents (hpb) –
Usually when an opponent jumps, he is going as fast as he can in that direction. Instead of aiming to the side of your opponent, aim where he is going to land, and when he gets to the highest point in his jump: FIRE. This is a very easy way to rail someone.
Anticipating your opponents moves
This is easier than it seems; People usually move in certain areas. Say your opponent is in a corner, he has 3 choices: forward / left / right. Taking a chance and aiming your cursor in one of these places ready for him, is a good way to kill him; Since the odds are 3 to 1, and only a DORK would jump straight at you, so usually aiming left or right is a good bet.
Also when someone is falling down, try to predict his line of falling, and set your crosshair in this invisibleline. Now when your opponent is about 1/2 – 3/4 cm. near your crosshair, FIRE. You’ll see you opponent either gib or crater. Or, when things go really terrible, nothing will happen. :)
Try not to get too wound up when some LPB is kicking your ass. If he rails you in 2-3 shots he has played well, and ping isn’t gonna matter; You were just out-railed. But if the two of you exchange 10-20 rails each, and you loose, you’ll have only yourself to blame as you did not kill him quick enough! Also try and make each rail count. Don’t keep your finger on the fire button, but try and aim each shot.
Play better players than yourself
If you play a good player and just kill him a couple of times, treat it as a minor victory, and soon you will get more confident and win more. Learn from your mistakes! Quake II is a VERY tactical game.
Whatever you do, practice makes perfect. Also shooting bots, like the eraser bot, or the gladiator bothelps. It might interest you to know you can set your ping (latency) using these bots, but remember the latency-emulation is not as accurate as internet-latency. Read the manual provided with your bot-download to find the command to set emulation-latency.
Changing weapons easy
Change your config if you have to stall when changing weapon! Remember the cfg-file is there to help you get the most out of Quake II. Use it.
Check out my configuration here.
Winning & losing
There something worse than a bad loser and thats a BAD winner! If you beat someone, don’t laugh or wind them up; No-one respects you for doing that. Also if you lose or win by a small amount why not say “GG”, or if they rail you in 2 shots or rail you in mid air say someting like: “WOW” or “Shot”.
! Tip: Buy cheap mice if you like smashing them against the wall, saves you a lot of money.
If you actually are reading this, you probably have read through the whole article. Good for you! I hope you found it usefull. I wish you good luck becoming a railgod. ;)
Don’t forget to mail me if this guide helped you becoming a better railer!