TOG ET: Friends not Enemies
TOG ET:Friends, Not Enemies
First person shooters are all about anonymous avatars getting the most frags, about ‘deathmatch’, and ‘capture the flag’ and ‘domination’… aren’t they?
Enemy Territory (ET), a free, stand-alone multiplayer mod for Return to Castle Wolfenstein, is so much more than just mindless slaughter. Its team focused, objective-based gameplay has spawned numerous local ladders and world-wide international competitions. What’s more, playing ET as part of a team or clan raises the enjoyment factor immeasurably, transforming the game into a better FPS experience.
A Brief History of the Division
The history of the Enemy Territory Division of TOG is a rich and storied one. Division Captain Bobcat has already compiled a superb history of ET for TOG (available to current TOG members here) but, behind this formal history lies the stories, the games and the personalities that have made the ET Division more than a game - a community.
Bobcat in particular has anecdotes and memories of ET that could repair a tank. He kick-starts this trip down ET memory lane with his recount of the now-infamous shoutcast of the match between TOG and Carnie.
“To spread a little light on this Carnie match (and no, I, Renegade, am not publicly admitting to using an offensive mortar). It was game 1, season 1 I think. We never made it past the first barrier and were lucky to get that far. We had a team that upheld the TOG spirit and was completely disorganized - but individually there were some really good players, just absolutely no cohesion. It was fun though.
Our FIRST Ladder match win was posted on EVERY forum in TOG. Took me (Renegade) ages to do them all but I managed it. Probably get kicked out for spamming nowadays.”
Subsequent games and shoutcasts proved just as amusing for all concerned. The TOG vs Elite Guards certainly springs to mind here, coming as it did with the intro header ‘Young girls and old men playing games over the internet, who woulda’ thought!’ The curious can still find it over at Gamestah for their aural pleasure.
Then there was our first TV experience. We were called to help out with GoodGame’s Roffle Cup: “Aiyiah fancies himself a jack of all trades, while our editing guru Argonaut has been going hard praccing Enemy Territory. Their 2 teams face off against each other with the help of TOG, and it all ends in tears.” Unfortunately, from memory, GoodGame stood us up a couple of times, so when the event finally was on, we didn’t have time to grab many players. Still, it was a fun night.
Out of game, well, Ned’s LAN’s must definitely get a mention. Ned has put on many a LAN for ET, and it’s given the Queensland contingent of the Division a semi-regular meeting place – though not always without the odd problem cropping up:
I (Bobcat) have had the privilege of meeting; Butterfly, Gel, Ecru, Cannonfodda, Shrek, Requum, 303 and others thanks to Ned’s hospitality. [This particular night] we were going to set up a server so we could play and also get some players in via the net. Sounds easy right? No. It took poor Requiem and Irene all day, from 10am to set it up. I think we (finally) got it up and running close to midnight
Another LAN highlight was the look of horror on Ecru’s face when he had to use Ned’s spare computer. I’m not sure if it was the hot pink desktop or the fact that it was a Windows machine that shocked him more!
Real world relationships have enriched (and sometimes complicated) the Enemy Territory TOG gaming experience. Fathers, sons, daughters, brothers and sisters have all played their part in the TOG ET story. Some have contributed as players: there are twin brothers Smartie and Renegade, brothers Macca and Invader; Alpha Gamma is SureShot’s father, Claw’s son, Kaotic, even plays ET and has just joined the Socials ladder team. Others have contributed as partners, such as Moonshine and ENVY. Then, too, are the many partners and children that do not play ET but still contribute to the enjoyment that it offers the gamer in the family*.
The ET Division has always been a competitive one, and our teams have won their fair share of matches over the 18 seasons of GameArena’s ET Ladder, not to mention playing hard in several other ladder comps. The Commits, a team of dedicated TOG ET players even held the number one spot on the GameArena Ladder, following the now-famous victory over the incumbent champions, The Wood Ducks. Another of our teams, The Socials, has the longest active history in the GameArena ladder competition, having played the most games and remained in the competition for the most number of seasons. Long-time member Alpha Gamma remembers the early days fondly:
“Ahhh , those were the days, 3-4 scrims a week plus a match. With the map testing with Ned and his overseas map makers, made for a full schedule but lots of fun ”
While they may not have the best win loss/record (the Socials currently sit at 54 wins and 113 losses – not quite as good as the newly formed semi-committed team’s 16/33), the TOG ET players continue to held in high esteem by other players and teams. Fate, a more recent recruit to the TOG ranks, remembers that “TOG [was] the team we always asked for scrims, and also that Ned and Alpha Gamma set us up (eXtreme) with 10v10 pub style matches a couple of times.” This is a common theme in the ET community – members of TOG seemed to have risen to the top, not only within the GameArena community, but across a range of servers and competitions in the Australian ET community, such as Austourney, and even in a New Zealand Ladder competition.
With such a long lifespan to date, the Division is home to a number of famous (and infamous) personalities. Claw is a living legend within the ET Division, and his status as bona fide, certified TOG Legend is a testament to this. Even this brief look at the Division wouldn’t be complete unless it included something from the great man himself:
“When new to ET playing with Neddie, and not used to (enemies pinching your team-mate’s pants) and being in disguise, Neddie called out ‘shoot Neddie in disguise’ so I did, to the yell of ‘Noooo not me!’…
Well he did tell me (to shoot him).”
The TOG knife rush is TOG’s ultimate legacy to Enemy Territory. It epitomizes the TOG spirit. When faced with a spawn camp, or an impossible enemy, most other clans would just slash quit. Not TOG. When a TOG team has its back against the wall and knows that the fight is all but hopeless, this is when machine guns, handgrenades, panzerfausts and K43s are thrown aside as useless. Rather than give a prone-lying, spawn-camping anonymous enemy the satisfaction of quitting, TOG teams draw knives and charge!
It’s rarely a successful tactic – scratch that, it’s never a successful tactic: TOG die by the dozen. But how they die! They die well. They die with hearts on sleeves and TOG pride intact. They die, and then they come back to hurl themselves at the enemy once more! Long live Enemy Territory - long live TOG.
*To avoid complications (i.e. divorce), the logistics of these relationships - the machinations and contractual agreements that allow for one partner to spend a copious amount of time playing ET rather than interacting with the other - shall not be disclosed or discussed.
Article Submitted by TOG Geordie