++++++++++++++++++++++++    //=====     //=====  =======   // //    //  =======
+   Battlefield 2142   +   //     \    //             //  // //    //        //
+    Squad    Guide    +  //      /   //             //  // //    //        //
+     By EvanBGood     + //======/   //=====  ======//  //  =====//  ======//
+karma2142 @ yahoo .com+//      \   //       //        //       //  //
+     Version 1.02     //        | //       //        //       //  //
++++++++++++++++++++++//========/ //       //======= //       //  //=======

Version 1.02 10-27-06
----------------------------
Updated more permissions
Minor fixes to chapter II, section C
Minor fixes to chapter IV, section A
Minor fixes to chapter IV, section D

Version 1.01 10-25-06
----------------------------
Added permissions for Gamesradar.com and Cheatplanet.com to use the guide
Made minor fixes and additions to the SLSB in Chapter V

Version 1.0 10-24-06
----------------------------
Finished the first version of the guide

Version 0.0 10-20-06
----------------------------
Began the guide



Table of Contents
----------------------------
I. Introduction
II. The Basics
   A. What's a Squad?
   B. Joining, Creating, and Managing Squads
   C. Basic Squad Leader Commands
   D. Why You Should Never Be a Lone Wolf
III. Squad Points
   A. Points
   B. Titan Mode
   C. Results
IV. Squad Leader Commands & Tactics
   A. A Big Note on "Move Here"
   B. Where to Place Your Commands
   C. Spawn Beacons
   D. Kit Options
V. Squad leader unlock equipment
VI. Field Upgrades
VII. Making the Right Choices
   A. Servers
   B. Squads
   C. Squad Members
VIII. Closing & Disclaimer


I. Introduction
----------------------------

Battlefield 2142 is a great game. So great that it encouraged me to write my
first FAQ. I'm by no means an expert of this game or any other game in the
Battlefield series, but I did spend a good chunk of the past years in
Battlefield 2 and I'm sure I'll do the same with Battlefield 2142. However, I
figured a full FAQ would be too much for a first FAQ, so I decided to give a
shot at explaining just one system in the game.
The squad system is something that I see most people not knowing how to use
properly. Many Battlefield 2 vets assume this system is the same as it has
always been and, on the surface, it is. However, once you know how to use it
properly, proper squad use can nearly double your score for a game, whether
you're a squad member, a squad leader, or a commander, and can have a
significant influence on the outcome of the game itself.
In this guide, I'll attempt to explain the basics of issuing commands,
following commands, optimizing point gains, and generally run or run with an
effective squad.



II. The Basics
----------------------------


   A. What's a Squad?

For those who have never played a Battlefield game before, a squad is basically
a team within a team. Squads can have up to six players in them, comprised of
one squad leader and up to five squad members. There can be up to nine squads
per team. Each is assigned a number and name in the order in which they were
created. By default, they are named "Alpha, Beta, Charlie, Delta, Echo" etc.,
but they can be renamed by the squad leader. There are several basic advantages
to being in a squad that aren't new to Battlefield 2142. These are:

- The squad leader, if alive, will appear as a mobile spawn point (a green dot)
on the spawn map. This can make getting back to an enemy base after dying much
easier if your leader is still there. If the leader is in a vehicle, you will
automatically take the next available seat in the vehicle. The green dot will
be surrounded by red if the leader has been shot down, or if the leader is in a
vehicle with no seats available.
- All squad members appear in bright green on your map and radar. The leader
will have his "dot" on your map and radar replaced by a number inside a circle
(your squad's number), making him easier to spot and follow.
- Squads each get their own chat channel in addition to the team chat channel,
allowing you to talk only within the squad quickly.
- Squads each operate under their own VoIP (voice over IP, the system that
allows you to talk to other players through a microphone when holding down a
button). There is no general VoIP in a Battlefield team, so if you like to talk
in a game this way, squads are a must. However, many people are a bit timid
around the idea of VoIP, or simply don't have the equipment. On a public
server, this is not typically expected of you, so don't let it be a reason to
not join a squad, even if they are using VoIP in the squad once you join. The
worst they can do is remove you from the squad, which has no negative effects
other than needing to find a different squad.
- Squad leaders all get to share a VoIP with the commander. This chain of
command can be a powerful tool, as it allows the commander (the eye in the sky,
the one with the best tactical information) to give specific information to the
squad leaders, who then can organize against enemies more effectively. Again,
this is not expected of new players and is often only used to its full
potential in private matches such as LAN parties or clan wars.
- Squads get to use the command system, which is a quick and powerful
organization tool that doesn't even really require communication between the
squad members to get things done. With this system, just because you don't want
to talk in a game like this doesn't mean you can't still be a part of teamwork.
Read more about commands in section "C" of this chapter.
- Squads and squad leaders get an additional quick radio menu. The quick radio
menu is normally what you get when you press and hold the "Q" button (by
default). This allows you to call for medics, request ammo, thank people,
apologize to people, and (perhaps most importantly) quickly spot an enemy type
by simply looking at it, opening the "Q" menu, and clicking. However, squads
also get a "T" menu, which allows squad members to make requests of their
commander and squad leader. The first one on the menu is the "Request Orders"
request. This can be used when there's no order on the map or one is sitting in
a pointless place, though it often goes unheard to the ears of lazy leaders.
You can also request that the commander use his abilities in your area, such as
orbital strikes or supply drops, which (on occasion) can be useful to both you
and an overwhelmed commander who isn't close enough to the front lines to know
who needs those supplies. The squad leader gets a slightly better version of
the "T" menu. Their requests for commander assets are much more noticeable by
the commander. In addition, leaders can use the "T" menu to issue commands
extremely quickly without ever even having to open a map. Just make sure to aim
them properly! (More on that in section "C")

In addition to the basic benefits that existed before Battlefield 2142, there
are several great tweaks to the system to make it more powerful and useful than
ever in this game. These are:

- The one that's probably most interesting to the common Battlefield 2142
player is this: Points! Though these will be explained more in-depth in the
next chapter of the guide, keep in mind for now that squad members get extra
points when they follow a squad leader's command. As for squad leaders, they
can get massive amounts of points for themselves when they correctly command
and guide their squad. In addition to getting points for all normal activities
(something commanders don't get), squad leaders get one point every time one of
their orders are followed. For example, there is an "attack" command on an
enemy objective and a full squad goes after it on their own. With the enemies
within the radius of the attack command, the five squad members kill one person
each. In addition to the point they get for the kill, they get a squad bonus
point, while the squad leader gets a whopping five squad leader points for the
five kills under his guidance. However, one extremely important thing to note
about these points is that they don't appear until the round is over. I believe
many people don't see the value of this system because it isn't reported on
their in-game stats, but you WILL get all those points towards your soldier's
development when all is said and done.
- Commands are now objective-based. This is one thing that I see overlooked a
lot. As stated before, this will be covered more in later sections and
chapters, however, the important thing to note about this is that you can no
longer pick "attack" or "defend" or "move" specifically. If you put a command
on an enemy objective, it's automatically "attack". If you put a command on a
friendly objective, it's automatically "defend". If you put a command in the
middle of nowhere, it's "move". An important thing to remember about this (and
you'll hear this from me several times during the guide) is that the "move"
command is useless for squad bonuses! You MUST target your commands directly at
objectives to get the "attack" or "defend" options, and the point bonuses that
come with them. A huge mistake that new squad leaders and commanders will make
is to issue a "move" command just to the side of an objective, because they
didn't click directly on the objective. Though this still has organizational
benefit, it does nothing for the squad's advancement.
- Field upgrades. These are the other big reason to make and follow orders. In
the upper left hand corner of the screen is a bar that will slowly fill up as a
squad successfully completes commands. When full, this system will award all
squad members a free equipment unlock for the rest of their time on the server
(until they log out, that is). A good squad can earn several upgrades, which
can be a great way to test out new equipment and see what you might want to
unlock permanently. However, you can only unlock one item higher in the "tree"
than you have permanently unlocked. That means that if you haven't unlocked
anything permanently, you can only pick from the unlocks available at the
beginning of the game. But this also means that if, say, you've unlocked all
the medical unlocks up to the smoke grenade, a field upgrade will allow you to
add a Voss (the medic gun unlock) temporarily to your arsenal.
- Squad equipment. There are three items you can unlock specifically for squad
leaders. These will be covered more in-depth in a later chapter. The first one
is a beacon that can be dropped on the ground to allow your squad AND you to
spawn at a place where there is no spawn point. The second one is a little
hovering drone that will help you detect enemy forces. The third is a hovering
drone equipped with a couple guns to give a little support fire to you and your
squad. In addition to the fact that these need to be unlocked traditionally (or
as field upgrades), you must have a squad of a certain size to use them. One
member is required for the beacon, two for the drone, and three for the armed
drone.

So as you can see, there are several advantages to being part of a squad, or
leading one yourself. In fact, there are no disadvantages! So get in their with
your comrades, soldier!


   B. Joining, Creating, and Managing Squads

Joining or creating squads is not at all a hard thing to do. Open the squad
menu (caps lock by default) and you will see a list of the commander (if
present) and all available squads. If the padlock icon is lit up in one of them
or if there are already six soldiers in the squad, you can't join it. If a
squad is available, you simply click "Join". If you'd like to make your own
squad, click "create". You can make a squad with a custom name by clicking the
"custom squad" button at the bottom of the screen. To see the members of a
squad, hit the button with a down arrow on it next to the squad's name. Simple
as that.

As a squad member, there isn't much more you need to do. Get in the squad,
maybe request an order if there isn't one already, and start doing what you
came to do: shoot stuff!

As a squad leader, you can do a bit more to set up your squad once it's
running. Using the "manage squad" button at the bottom of the screen, you can
kick members, mute them from VoIP chat, and invite others to your squad. When
you've made changes on this menu, be sure to click "apply" to put them all into
effect. The squad inviting deserves extra mention, as many people simply forget
to join a squad when they join a game. You can make their experience better and
increase your team's likelihood of success greatly if you invite a few people
who have no squad. Three out of four unsquaded people will typically accept. If
possible, you can even try to recruit the "MVPs" of the game by requesting that
soldiers who are doing particularly well join your squad. After all, a squad
leader is nothing without good squad members.


   C. Basic Squad Leader Commands

Each squad can have one command open at any time. These commands can be issued
by the squad leader or by the commander, himself. When a squad leader receives
a command from the commander, an option to decline or accept the command will
appear at the bottom of the screen. Typically, a squad leader should hit "page
up" to accept the command whenever it's seen, as it's assumed the commander has
better information on enemy whereabouts. 
These commands include:
"Attack here", represented by a sword icon.
"Defend this position", represented by a shield icon.
"Move here", represented by an arrow icon.

Commanders can also request that their equipment be defended and there is a
"repairs needed" represented by a wrench if the commander wants his equipment
repair. They can also target enemy equipment to request "demolitions". These
options are also available to squad leaders, but typically they'll be of more
concern to the commander.

When one of these commands is issued, it will appear on your radar and map with
the appropriate icon and a straight line between you and the objective.

In addition, it will also appear as an icon right on your HUD (heads-up
display, a term used to describe the basic interface in front of you when
playing the game, including your health, objective icons, soldier names, etc.).
The icon will appear in the center of the screen when you face it, or on the
corner of the screen indicating that you need to turn around in that direction.
In addition to the icon type, the icon will also have a number followed by an
"m", such as "100m". This indicates how many meters you are away from the
objective.

Squad leaders can issue their own commands in one of two ways. The first way is
to hit the squad button (caps lock by default) and bring up the squad command
map. From here, you can right click anywhere on the map to bring up a menu.
You'll see all the requests you can make to your commander on this menu, as
well as one of the commands you can issue. If you click anywhere on the map,
the command that you'll see on the menu will be the ever-useless "move"
command. However, if you right click on a flag or silo icon, you'll be able to
choose "attack" or "defend", depending on if you control the objective or not.
This method of commanding can be useful because you can do it after being
killed, while waiting to respawn. This is a luxury that the commander does not
have and can save some time.

The second way is a method that all good squad leaders should get used to. If
you aim your sights directly at a flag, silo, or titan icon on your HUD, the
icon will gain a yellow boarder. At this time, you can open the "T" menu and
pick the "issue command" option. This will allow you to quickly drop an order
on a specific objective, even if you can't see it clearly. This can be
extremely useful because you can do it while moving with your squad and can
quickly change the command to wherever you're headed. Keep in mind, however,
that, like the map command, aiming the "T" menu and anything but a flag will
issue a "move here" command. If you don't see the icons on your screen, keep in
mind that they can be toggled on and off by using the left "alt" key (referred
to in the option settings as the "3D Map" key).

Once a command has been issued, it won't go away until another is issued, or
the game ends. Command types also don't change. For example, if you have an
attack command on an objective and you take control of it, it does not become a
defend command unless you aim at the flag and issue it again. However, attack
and defend commands work similarly to each other and will provide the same
bonuses, even if they request the defense of an enemy objective or the attack
of a friendly one.


   D. Why You Should Never Be a Lone Wolf

A "lone wolf" is a word used to describe Battlefield players who do not join
squads and instead opt to play solo. In the days of Battlefield 2, being a lone
wolf was reasonably pointless. There was no advantage to running around alone
and no disadvantage for working with your teammates. But there was really no
reason a lone wolf couldn't gain just as many points as anyone else if they had
good aim.

But now we're in Battlefield 2142 and being a lone wolf can actually hurt your
success and greatly slow your advancement in the game overall. There are three
areas of success in Battlefield 2142 that can be harmed by being a lone wolf,
and helped by being a squad member, squad leader, or commander. These are your
enjoyment of the game, your advancement in the game, and the success of your
teammates in the game. Let's look at each of these.


- Your enjoyment of the game -

Of course, game enjoyment is an extremely subjective concept. It might be fun
for you to sit and snipe all day, or it might be more fun for you to hop in
every tank you see. But no matter what you like to do, you won't do as much of
it as a lone wolf. You might think that being alone will give you more kills
and more action, but it's in fact more likely to get YOU killed and your team
is less likely to help you out. You might also think that your style of play
wouldn't fit into a squad. This is very untrue. The format of squads in this
game allows you to stick as close to or roam as far away from the squad as you
want. You don't have to move together, you don't have to attack at the same
time, you don't have to attack the same targets, and you don't even have to
follow orders if you don't want to. Lone wolves, on average, will find
themselves getting frustrated a lot more by situations that aren't as
impossible to overcome as they may seem. If you ever hear someone complaining
that one class or vehicle is over or under powered in this game, they probably
spend most of their time as a lone wolf. In addition, some servers have a "lone
wolves go first" policy when it comes to balancing teams. This means you'll be
more likely to be switched to the losing team when they need help, most likely
resulting in a loss for you.

In a squad, you'll quickly find that the game can be a lot more "fun", in
whatever way that means to you. Squads often last a lot longer in exciting
firefights and, with other soldiers around to help you, your chance to survive
that excitement is much more likely. Squads also share many tactical advantages
that will allow you to see enemies long before they see you. You'll also find
that squads aren't at all restrictive to how you want to play. If you like
blowing up things with remote explosives, there's a place for you in squads. If
you like sneaking behind enemy lines, there's a place for you in squads. If you
like just charging in rambo style and killing everyone you see, there's a place
for you in squads. Lastly, good squads will unlock field upgrades, allowing you
to try out new "toys" before you've unlocked them.

It may be a little intimidating to play along with other people when you're
just starting out, but don't worry, you're all on the same team and they're
there to help. You'll probably even learn the game faster working with and
watching your squad mates, and Battlefield 2142 only gets more fun if you get
good at it.


- Your advancement in the game -

Ah, points. They may not have mattered to you before in FPS games, but with the
unlock system, Battlefield 2142 turns stats and awards into more than bragging
rights. The more points you collect, the more you can do, and (used correctly)
the more powerful you'll become. As a lone wolf, you get some of the lowest
point returns in the game, even if you do a great job. In addition to the
aforementioned increased likelihood of death (you can't earn points if you're
eating dirt), you miss out on many potential bonus points, which can sometimes
double or even triple the points you walk away with at the end of a round. A
big change in Battlefield 2142 that you should also note is that kills are all
worth one point (down from two points in Battlefield 2), unless they are
carried out with some kind of bonus (such as the extra point you get for
killing someone under a squad command). This means killing alone is no longer
an effective way to gain points. In fact, a kill is now equal to the one point
you get for damaging an enemy and letting someone else finish them off.

Squads simply always make more points than soldiers going solo. When it comes
to pure killing power, squads find more targets, find targets sooner, and
survive more assaults, which means more points from that. In addition, medics,
repair men, and resuppliers are all more likely to get points from moving with
a squad (especially medics who can revive). Best of all, as mentioned several
times in this guide, for every kill you get as a squad member or any beneficial
action you perform (such as a revive) in the radius of an attack or defend
command, you (and your squad leader) get an extra squad point. These points are
awarded to you at the end of the round along with any award points you might
have earned. Speaking of which, awards are also much easier to get in squads.
In addition to some awards actually being based on squad activity, awards like
the combat efficiency pin (for a 5 kill streak) are much easier to obtain with
a squad helping you, especially if that kill streak is assisted by being
revived when you would have otherwise died. If you combined the added
efficiency of combat with the squad bonus points and the potential for earning
medals, a round with 35 traditionally earned points could easily result in over
100.


- The success of your teammates - 

Next to team killing, being a lone wolf is one of the worst things you can do
for your team. For every lone wolf there is on a team, there's one less space
for someone who would contribute to the team's success more effectively. In
fact, a team with too many lone wolfs can even be less successful than a team
without a commander, especially in smaller games. At the top of the screen of a
squad menu, there's a number next to the word "unassigned". That is the number
of lone wolves that are on your team. If that number is larger than the number
of lone wolves on the other team, you're at a disadvantage, plain and simple.
Just remember, an organized squad is much more powerful than a disorganized
squad, but a disorganized squad is still better than no squad at all.

A squad actively using commands does many things to influence the outcome of a
game. In conquest mode, squads often are the ones best-suited for grabbing
control points and taking down enemies quickly, while in titan mode, they also
handle the path to a titan core more effectively (it's all but impossible to
take down a titan without help). Squads also have the benefit of squad leader
spawning and spawn beacons, which are an extremely important tactical tool in
any game. This allows one crafty squad leader to get up to five people behind
enemy lines simply by getting there, himself. Even better, a squad beacon
placed behind enemy lines will allow your squad to be an endless force of
soldiers until the objective is taken or the beacon is found by the enemy.
Finally, it's easy to see that squads are a lot easier for a commander to
handle. When a commander is at work, he sees a list of squads in the upper left
hand corner and he can tell any number of them to do what he needs them to do.
At least in theory, no one of the battlefield will know how to win better or be
more determined to win than the commander, meaning that being under his control
is the key to success. However, lone wolves can not be ordered by the commander
and are very hard for him to notice or keep track of, so it's rare that the
commander's actions will help them. Nothing spells doom for a commander faster
than a large team with one little squad.


So, as you can see, there is no good reason to be a lone wolf. It hurts you, it
hurts your team, and it can even potentially hurt the fun of the game as a
whole, since the game is a lot more fun when two well-organized teams are
clashing than when one is destroying the other or when sixty-four people are
running around like madmen. Find your nook in one or more of the three roles in
the chain of command and get good at it. Fun and success will soon follow.



III. Squad Points
----------------------------


   A. Points

The squad point system is not too complicated when you get down to it. Simply,
squad points are single bonus points that you earn each time you do something
helpful to your squad and team within the radius of an attack or defend squad
order. The size of this radius seems to vary quite a bit (I may have better
test data on this in a future version of this guide), though it's best to just
work normally towards and around the objective holding the command, not to try
to only aim for enemies near the objective. There are several different
activities that will award a squad point inside an attack or defend radius.
These include:
- Kills
- Heals (that earn points, themselves)
- Revives
- Resupplies (that earn points, themselves)
- Repairs (that earn points, themselves)
- Kill damage assists (seems somewhat random, possibly based on if another
squad member finishes the kill)

Squad leaders do not gain any of these bonuses, but instead gain one point
whenever a squad member gains one. In this respect, a squad leader has the
potential to gain much more than a member if he commands well and has a good
squad following those commands.


   B. Titan Mode

Titan mode has some extra bonuses that can be a bit confusing. Though the titan
can be highlighted as an attack or defend location like any objective, you
typically do not get squad bonus points for actions inside it (though you get
one titan defend or titan attack bonus point, regardless of squad status).
However, I have seen squad point bonuses show up after the core of the titan
has been destroyed. But because there is nothing that tells you where squad
points come from, it's hard to tell if this was due to a kill on the way out of
the titan, or if it was due to the destruction of the titan itself. This should
not discourage you from putting commands on the titan when necessary, however,
as it can be useful tactically and actions still seem to fill up the field
upgrade bar normally.


   C. Results

At the end of a round, you get to see the results screen. Then and only then
will you see the number of squad points you've earned. On the first screen,

you'll see a list of all your points, as well as your "career points", which is
Battlefield 2142's way of saying "actual points" as opposed to the score you
gained without bonuses. You'll see a squad member bonus, a squad leader bonus,
or a commander bonus based on your role, as well as any bonuses you got from
badges, pins, ribbons, or medals, or an "away bonus" which is gained by people
who haven't played in a while.

You can also see the squad screen, which will display the two best squads from
both teams. The number on the far right next to the names of the squad members
on the list is the number of squad points that they've earned. It also will
display a combined total of all the squad points gained by the squad. If this
total number is extremely low (between zero and five), that team probably
didn't have very good squads or a very good commander and, if the other team's
squad has a higher number, chances are that they won the game (obviously, this
is not a guarantee, however). You can look between the multiple results menus
at your leisure, but if there's a new map loading, the pages will change
automatically and you won't be able to look at them twice, so be sure to read
everything quickly. Unfortunately, the screen shot option doesn't work in the
results screen, so you won't be able to save the memories of a good game
without a third-party screenshot method.



IV. Squad Leader Commands & Tactics
----------------------------


   A. A Big Note on "Move Here"

The "move here" command... if you ever see a squad leader or commander giving
only this command, it's a red flag that they don't know what they're doing.
"Move here" is the command that is issued when a squad leader or commander
doesn't aim properly at an objective icon. It's identified by a yellow line
(instead of a purple one) on your radar between you and the command location,
and by an arrow icon in the position of the command. If this is sitting right
next to a flag, it's simply a matter of poor aim. To avoid this, yourself, make
sure you're pointed directly at the objective icon before using the "T" menu,
or you're right-clicking directly on the objective in the command map. If using
the faster "T" menu method, the icon will gain a bright yellow boarder before
when you face it. Getting good at aiming at icons quickly will allow you to
change commands in high-pressure situations. It's possible to issue a command
like this when driving a vehicle at full speed.

But back to the main point, why is "move here" so bad? Simple. It doesn't award
any squad bonus points and it doesn't fill up the field upgrade bar. Other than
being a signal that you want your squad to move to a certain position, it's
like the command isn't even there. The only way this should ever be used is
when you're in a squad or team that's so tactically minded that the squad
leader or commander wants you to position yourself somewhere outside of an
objective to fire from afar. However, you'd be hard-pressed to find a place for
this tactic to ever be useful in any game, and even then, it would probably not
be useful for long. Even if you're trying to attack from a far-away location,
it's better to put the command where you're attacking towards, as any soldier
with half a brain will find the best route to attack from and the best place to
hold a line of fire, if necessary.


   B. Where to Place Your Commands

The easy answer to this question is to point your commands right where your
squad is (defend) or is going (attack). The idea isn't necessarily to tell
everyone what to do, but rather to organize and support what everyone naturally
wants to do. Don't place squad commands on the other side of the map when
there's an objective one-hundred meters away that all your squad members are
near. Also, it's easy mistake to assume that your squad will keep up with you,
especially if you're a pilot or in a fast-moving vehicle, while your squad
members may be on foot. Keep in mind that some squad members will fall behind
if you put a command too far away and, by the time they get there (if they even
try), the action might have already moved somewhere else. This might frustrate
a squad member into not following any commands which, while not completely
detrimental to your cause, certainly doesn't help you and your goals.

The beginning of a game may be overwhelming, as there might be several neutral
objectives on the map. If things are too spread out, just wait a minute or so
for the map to fill up a bit. Alternatively, you can try to get your squad
moving together right out of the gates and pick whichever objective you think
would be useful. This is one of the easier times to get an entire squad in an
air transport or APC, so a good method can be driving or flying several squad
members to the objective of your choosing to stake your claims quickly. But
once the map starts filling up, your choices should be a bit more obvious.
Attack objectives near objectives that you own and defend objectives that are
under resisted attack from the enemy, as the game calls for.

You should also keep in mind that trying to attack every objective on the map,
one after the other, is a bit foolish, as it will almost always result in you
losing as many objectives as you gain, if not more. In conquest mode, this
isn't too hard to understand. On many maps, you only need to hold more than
half of the flags to cause your enemy's tickets to "bleed", at which point you
might as well play defensively and keep the heat on the enemy for as long as
possible. On others, it may only take one flag to make the battlefield even for
both sides. Keep in mind that each time you die, you take a ticket from your
team, so once your tickets aren't being drained by lack of flags, or once your
enemy is being drained, your priority for you and your squad should be kill
efficiency (more kills, less deaths), and this can often mean defending from a
safer position than going into an insane kamikaze attack mode. Put simply, take
what you can get and don't get greedy.

Titan mode can be a bit trickier when it comes to commands because there's so
many places to go, so many things to think about, and troops can travel so
quickly to most objectives via titan pods or air transports. In addition, there
is no "acceptable" number of silos, as more will always help more and less will
always hurt more. You should also note that the missile count-down of each silo
can be more important than who controls it. Each time a silo changes ownership,
it launches a missile at the enemy titan. Then, two minutes pass before it
launches another. This means that some silos might be more important to catch
than others before they send another missile into you're titan's shield or
hull. Pressing and holding the "T" menu button will display the count-down for
each silo at the top of your screen. This can be used to influence your
commands. Though all this may seem complicated to handle at one time, the same
basic rule still applies: command where your squad wants to go. No matter how
important one silo may be, it's pointless to command your troops to go there if
they can't or won't.

Fights at silos can be a bit faster and more chaotic than fights at flags, but
the theory behind them is still the same, and commands still work in the same
way. The major difference is that conquest games often have a "line" behind
which the majority of each team has control (though this, of course, can be
broken by sneaking to an objective far behind the enemy line). Because of the
ease of travel, titan games often lack this line. This makes choosing the next
silo a bit trickier as the enemy could literally be anywhere on the map. So,
you have to be a bit more aware of enemy tendencies and exploit weaknesses when
you find them. You might find one silo to be particularly appealing to the
enemy, which makes a good place for your squad to defend and destroy, while the
rest of your team takes care of the other silos. Your overall goal, however,
should be the same as a conquest game. You want to control more silos than the
enemy as often as possible and you want the enemy shield to fall before yours.
Once the shield is down, the game only gets more complicated. As a squad
leader, it's wise to try to make the decision for your squad, whether you're
going to attack the enemy titan, defend your own, or continue gaining silo
control. Keep in mind that, while attacking may be the most appealing option,
defending can sometimes turn the entire game in your favor, and some games are
so well-defended that silo control becomes a focus. If you're certain your
enemy is too spread out in silos or making easily crushed attacks on your
titan, attacking might be the best option. Remember, practice makes perfect,
and you'll soon have good instincts to handle the rock-paper-scissors match
that is a game of titan mode.

Finally, a big part of where to place your commands is when to change them. The
worst thing you can do when trying to command effectively is to forget that you
left a command in a completely useless place. There is no limit to how many
times you can change commands and, if your commander isn't giving you any or
isn't giving you new ones fast enough, never be afraid to take matters into
your own hands. Even with no commander at all, a good squad leader can change
the tides of an entire game if he commands quickly and effectively. When
something changes, command accordingly. When you take an objective, command
accordingly. When your squad gets slaughtered, command accordingly. Though it
might not always be possible to find the time to make the perfect command at
every juncture, look for good opportunities to change commands, such as when
sitting at an objective, when traveling, or when dead (remember, you can
command even when dead, which a commander can't do). You may even want to
change "attack" commands to "defend" ones after taking an objective to help
remind your squad to stay put. Use your instincts, don't be afraid of making
and correcting mistakes, and try to keep your eyes on the enemy, not just your
map. After all, a squad leader should be out there fighting just like everyone
else. Good squad leaders are the ones who can handle that with the added
responsibility of issuing and accepting commands.


   C. Spawn Beacons

Of the three items that can be unlocked for squad leaders to use, the spawn
beacon may be one of the most useful ones, even though it's the easiest to
unlock, only requires one squad member, and can even be chosen as a field
upgrade in battle by someone who has no squad leader items unlocked. The exact
effect of this item will be explained in the squad leader equipment chapter of
the guide. This is just a brief reminder that any good squad leader should know
how to use these and make use of them when the situation calls for it. One of
the best tactics for leading a squad is to place your spawn beacon in a place
that's hard to reach, such as on the opposite side of an enemy objective, or on
the roof of an enemy titan. The beacon ensures an endless stream of your
soldiers unless discovered by the enemy (which can be surprisingly rare). When
used on an enemy objective, this will have one of three results. One, the most
likely result, you'll overwhelm and take the objective. Two, you'll meet
resistance and repeatedly make use of the element of surprise (as most soldiers
will be moving towards the front lines, not checking their backs) and you and
your squad will rack up kills and bonus points as you constantly respawn right
on top of a command location. Or three, the least appealing result, the enemy
will use your beacon against you and attempt to slaughter your squad each time
it spawns. At this point, it's a good idea to try to snag your beacon so your
squad doesn't fall blindly to their own deaths. Typically, however, squad
beacons will have a great effect anywhere on the field, even if it isn't all
the way behind an enemy objective (half-way between two objectives lowers
travel distance). And remember, this is the only way to set up an extra spawn
point for you, the squad leader, as you have no leader to spawn on like the
rest of your squad.


   D. Kit Options

Though all kits, weapons, and items have the potential to be useful in any
situation you might come across, there are some benefits to each kit that a
good squad leader should be aware of. Keep in mind that each kit can mix and
match items from both trees if you have them unlocked. Let's take a look at
each:

- Recon, Sniper -
Snipers only have one function, really: to kill infantry. Though this may not
be the absolute best thing for a squad leader to spend his time doing, they are
quite good at it, and kills never hurt. In addition, snipers tend to stay in
one well-hidden place more often, which means you're typically a much safer
spawn point for your squad, assuming you're in a favorable position. Try to
avoid using anti-personnel mines on servers that allow them to cause team
damage as this is a sure-fire way to get team kills, especially when your
squadmates are hanging around you and running by places you might have mined.
Mines should only be used by snipers who are far away from the rest of their
team, where they won't cause unintentional harm. The other two items in the
sniper's equipment only serve to make his rifle steadier and more deadly. The
sniper's last unlock is a heavy sniper rifle that can kill a light armor troop
in one body shot, which can only be a good thing if you like sniping.

- Recon, Cloaker (Spec-ops) -
Cloakers can take out specific targets for your squad, like dangerous vehicles
(with their remote explosives) or well-placed infantry. However, a cloaker's
main advantage as a squad leader is with the squad beacon, for obvious reasons.
A cloaked squad leader can get to a good place to place a beacon more safely
and without the action being noticed. Cloakers also get the NetBat Fade Delay
helmet, which will allow squad HUD info to last on the screen longer than it
would normally. In the end of the cloaker tree, cloakers get a much-needed
non-sniper primary weapon which fires extremely quickly and is suitable for
short and medium range combat.

- Assault, Attack -
The attack tree of the assault unlocks, much like the sniper, is there mostly
to take out infantry. However, attack assault soldiers are much more prepared
for the front lines, while snipers should obviously take their shots from
further away. This means that assault troops are better for taking and
protecting objectives, where the enemy is more likely to be close by. Even with
no medic unlocks, attack assault troops can still use med packs, which can
always be helpful to both you and your squad members when hurt. Attack assault
troops also get the NetBat Infantry ID which allows you to pass on information
about the kit enemy troops are carrying to your squad members' HUDs when you
look at an enemy. This information isn't incredibly useful, but it's a free
benefit once unlocked, so it couldn't hurt. At the end of the assault attack
tree, in addition to getting two assault rifle attachments to make you slightly
more deadly, you'll get the Baur heavy assault rifle. In addition to sharing a
name with a certain TV action hero, the Baur causes considerably more damage
than a standard assault rifle in exchange for a smaller clip size. This gun is
more suitable for middle to longer range semi-auto shots than full-auto shots,
where it's somewhat slow firing rate and smaller clip can be outmatched by
other guns. However, keep in mind that you will have a shotgun attachment
available if you have this gun unlocked.

- Assault, Medic -
The medic is one of the most useful kits for squad leaders. The ability to
revive teammates, whether they're on your squad or not, will both help your
team greatly and give you some nice point boosts. In addition, medics can heal
faster and lay down smoke grenades for cover, though the grenades are rather
difficult to use effectively. As a medic squad leader, you'll most likely spend
most of your time just keeping your squad alive, mixed with shooting at the
enemy. This tree ends with the Voss assault rifle, which has a larger clip than
the standard rifle and is more suited to faster, close-quarters attacks.

And here's a little tip for medics in general. In the real world, the first
step of first aid on an unresponsive victim is to check the scene for danger.
This holds true in the Battlefield world, as well. Don't go straight into a
highly dangerous area just to revive someone without trying to clear it first.
You'll most likely just be killed yourself, but if you manage to get the
revive, it's very likely that you'll BOTH die. In fact, a good tactic on the
other side of the situation is to lure enemy medics to dead bodies that you
just shot, then shoot them, and the same person again. Don't let this happen to
you and your squad.

- Support, Machine-Gunner -
MGs, including the HMG at the end of this tree, are the ultimate in defensive
weapons. No soldier can guard a narrow area like one lying prone with an MG.
Because of this, they are often well-suited for titan defense and, as their
name implies, can spray some very powerful and distracting support fire for
your team. As a MG-wielding support troop, your role will often be to find good
positions and take well-planned shots, while you allow your assault rifle
carrying teammates charge out in front. Though MGs can be offensive, they don't
work as well in snap-judgement situations, especially when moving, which is why
steadier guns should take the lead. In addition, this line gives you three very
powerful tools. The first is an EMP grenade. EMPs can temporarily disable
vehicles and blur the view of soldiers. In a teamwork situation, a support's
EMP grenade followed by a well-placed engineer shot can spell very fast doom
for an armored vehicle or walker. The second item support troops get is the
NetBat Active Camo ID. This, like all the unlock helmets, is a passive effect,
and perhaps the most useful one of the four. This will "paint" any cloaked
targets in front of you for you and your squad with a red diamond. Cloaked
targets are essentially unarmed when invisible, so this can result in some very
easy kills and can stop the plans of the cloaker, who could cause lots of
trouble if he sneaked by. Last is the A-12 Enforcer Sentry Gun, which is a
reasonably powerful stationary automated turret gun. Though it often doesn't
have enough power to work effectively on its own, it's essentially a free extra
gun for you and your squad, which means more damage and more chaos. It also is
effective in titan defense along with your MG. Like the assault kit, you still
have the ability to resupply teammates even if you don't invest in the tree
containing the advanced ammo hub. Because of this, you should always help your
squad members and teammates when they need ammo, especially if engineers are
around, as they run out of ammo faster than other kits. 

- Support, Resupplyer -
The resupplying support squad leader is the most capable ammo resupplier on the
battlefield and you should certainly make use of that ability. In addition, you
can tactically use small IPS Shields to defend yourself and squad members
against small arms fire. IPS shields, like smoke grenades, are difficult to use
tactically, but not entirely useless. This tree also gets the DysTek Pulse
Meter, which potentially has great benefits as a squad leader as it's supposed
to act like a small, portable UAV. However, there have been reports that, as of
now, this item is not working properly. Finally, the resupplyer gets the most
powerful (of two) shotgun in the game, which can be deadly in the right hands,
though it's pretty useless at longer ranges.  Even if you're a resupplyer, your
MG can still be your best friend and you're still extremely powerful
defensively. A squad leader with this kit is best suited to provide covering
fire for his squad while making sure they're well supplied. As an added bonus,
the squad leader can replenish his own equipment with his ammo pack. This means
if your beacon or one of your drones gets destroyed, you don't have to respawn
to get another.

- Engineer, Anti-vehicle -
Engineers are built to take down vehicles. This can be very useful to your
squad as an unchecked vehicle can lay waste to as many support and assault
troops as you can possibly throw at it. This tree of the engineer unlocks
allows you to defuse mines that might threaten your squad, and lay "PDS-1"
devices, which act as small UAVs that detect vehicles in an area on your team's
radar. All engineers can repair vehicles, as well, which can be very useful for
squads that are vehicle-heavy. This type of engineer also gets the vehicle ID
helmet, which transmits vehicle info back to your squad, though I have yet to
see this prove very useful as typically all you need to know about a vehicle is
where it is and what type it is, which is provided through a standard "Q" menu
"spotted" option. Finally, the heavy anti-vehicle rifle is a dumb-fire
anti-vehicle missile that travels faster than standard rockets, which can make
an engineer much more effective in the right hands (though some prefer the
normal rockets). A squad leader with this equipment is actively searching
vehicles that might threaten his squad and, with the help of his squad,
destroys them before they cause trouble. This type of engineer is the more 
"head-on" type, whose equipment helps them attack vehicles with more force than
tactics. The secondary duties include handling repairs and disarming the
occasional mine if you're lucky enough to spot one in time.

- Engineer, Anti-Air -
The anti-air engineer isn't as remarkable for it's anti-air abilities as it is
for its first three unlocks. The engineer gets two different mines: an EMP and
a motion mine. The motion mine is an anti-vehicle mine that can detect friend
from foe, which can be extremely useful. The EMP mine is somewhat harder to
use, but can deliver a debilitating EMP blast to any vehicle that goes over it.
This equipment makes this kind of engineer the more "tactical" of the two, as
a good mine-laying engineer will be able to more effectively plan ahead against
enemy vehicles. As a squad leader, however, your biggest interest should be in
the advanced repair tool. Unlocking this will allow you to repair faster and,
more importantly, produce a repair "aura" when inside a vehicle. Though you
can't repair your own vehicle without getting out (some vehicles allow you to
repair from certain seats), this has tremendous teamwork potential. If a squad
member also has this ability and you're both traveling together in armored
vehicles, you make an incredibly irritating twosome for the enemy, as you'll
both be there constantly repairing each other's damage. But even if you're the
only one with this ability, it's simply more convenient sometimes to drive up
next to a vehicle and repair it from the safety of whatever you're in than it
is to get out and chase the thing down on foot, possibly getting stepped on or
run over in the process. At the end, the anti-air engineer gets an anti-air
gun. This is typically not the most useful gun in the world because it's
reasonably rare to find air targets that are a threat compared to the many
vehicles and soldiers you'll encounter. However, it could still be useful in
some situations, especially on titan maps which have more heavy reliance on air
transport vehicles. But as a squad leader, you're more likely to find repairing
useful... not staring up in the sky and waiting.



V. Squad Leader Unlock Equipment
----------------------------


There are three items in the unlockable equipment menu available for people who
lead squads often. These are available as squad field upgrades, but remember
that you can only get the first one (or one higher in the tree than you already
have unlocked). Effective squad leaders should always have at least one of
these with them when going into a fight. These items have their own slot on the
soldier customization menu, so they don't take up extra space when used, though
you can only have one at any given time. The item will then tuck itself out of
the way, bound to your "8" key by default. In addition, an icon will appear
next to your name in the squad selection menu to indicate that you are carrying
one of these items. When you see a leader with this icon, it typically means
they're more likely to know what they're doing and aren't just some person who
decided to start a squad on a whim. In order of unlock, here are the three
items:

- SLSB -
The SLSB, or Squad Leader Spawn Beacon, is arguably the most useful item a
squad leader can carry. Like an AED is to a medic, so is an SLSB to a squad
leader.

The SLSB looks like some kind of high-tech Frisbee-based landmine. To use it,
you simply click and it will be thrown out in front of you. Once on the ground,
it acts as a mobile spawn point that you and your squad can come back to when
you die. It works for an unlimited number of times until it's either destroyed
or picked up by you. The benefit of this is pretty obvious; it allows you and
your squad to spawn at places far away from captured objectives or friendly
bases, eliminating the time and danger of traveling there by foot or vehicle.

There are a few drawbacks, however. The beacon is very easy to destroy, if
found and, though there are no icons to alert that a beacon is friendly or
hostile, a smart enemy will probably assume something is up and take out the
beacon. They might also make use of the fact that an endless stream of
disoriented soldiers is popping up around one area, making a discovered beacon
a pretty common ambush point. The beacon also replaces the ability for squad 
members to spawn on the squad leader, himself. Also, though spawning directly
on a squad leader allows you to spawn normally, the SLSB brings in soldiers by 
drop pod from the sky (who knows where they come from). This has several 
drawbacks. One, the enemy can see you falling in and the sound of the pod 
colliding with the ground is reasonably loud. Two, unlike other drop pods, you
have no control over where the pod falls; only control over the direction
you're in when you hit the ground. Three, the pod can be quite disorienting,
as you land in a cloud of smoke and it can take you a few seconds to figure
out exactly which way you're headed and where your foes are (which is plenty of
time to get shot).

There is also a small glitch in the game when it comes to the semi-random
positioning of the drop pods around the beacon. Sometimes, drop pods can get
caught in trees or on other structures which will cause them to open
prematurely, often causing falling damage if the parachute isn't opened in time.
The biggest problem with this glitch is on the Camp Gibraltar map, where a
beacon near a wall inside the camp could drop a pod on the outside of the wall.
The outside of the wall is an out-of-bounds zone and there is no way out of it
other than to die. If this glitch becomes a problem, be sure to move your beacon
away from whatever obstruction is causing it.

These drawbacks are minor compared to the true usefulness of the SLSB. A
well-placed beacon can make a heavily contested objective much easier to grab,
a titan much easier to attack, and a defended base much more secure (if the
beacon is near a base that becomes captured). Squad leaders should typically
have one of these down somewhere, unless they're moving to put one in a
different place, or if their position is favorable enough that spawning on the
squad leader is more useful than spawning on the beacon, such as if the squad
leader is driving an APC.

It should be noted that you can only have one beacon in place at any time. If
you try to throw a second beacon while there is still one active anywhere else
on the map, it will simply stick to your hands, though you'll still declare
"Squad, beacon is now active!" each time you try to throw it. You can either
destroy your own beacon to allow you to put down another, or pick it up with
the "G" key (by default). It's recommended that you pick it up, as you can only
carry one beacon at a time. However, you carry a new beacon each time you spawn
and can get a new one from any supply drop crate or support troop.

SLSBs award no points on their own, but used in conjunction with an attack or
defend command, they can make more squad points and squad leader points than
any other method. The SLSB can only be used by squad leaders who both have it
unlocked and have one or more squad members in their squad at the time.

- RD-4 Otus -
The RD-4 Otus is the less violent of the two hovering toasters that squad
leaders can use. The Otus tends to find enemies around you and "paint" them for
you and your squad with the little red diamond icons that you see when an enemy
is spotted for your team, allowing you to see their path even behind
obstructions. Though this isn't as powerful as a UAV or as descriptive and
reliable as a teammate's "spotted" command, extra tactical data can only be a
good thing, and can help lead to the success of you and your squad.

The Otus is selected like any other squad leader item, and looks like a remote
control before activated. Simply click to use the remote, which will spawn a
little hovering drone above your head. This drone will follow you around until
it (or you) is destroyed. Like the SLSB, you can only have one active and can
only carry one. If the drone is destroyed, you'll need to resupply before you
can get another.

The main drawback to the drone is its increased visibility. It's designed to
help you in a situation with your entire squad around to help, as well, so
one-man stealth missions don't work too well with the drone. The reason for
this is that it hovers right over you when, say, you're hiding behind
something, letting the enemy know that, not only is their a soldier hiding
there, there's a squad leader hiding there, which means that they should be
taken out quickly before their squad spawns around them. Even in normal
firefights, this drone tends to point you out the enemy a bit more than you
might desire. Snipers and cloakers would definitely not want to use this while
doing their jobs.

The Otus awards no points for use, but the tactical data may lead to more kills
for you and your squad, which is always a plus. The Otus can only be used by
squad leaders who both have it and the SLSB unlocked and have two or more squad
members in their squad at the time.

- SD-8 Accipiter -
The SD-8 Accipiter is the more violent of the two hovering toasters that squad
leaders can use. The Accipiter moves just like the Otus, but instead of
painting targets itself, it looks for targets that have already been painted by
other means, such as squad members spotting them. When found, it uses two
somewhat weak chain guns to open fire on the target. These bullets are not
nearly as powerful as the ones that come from the support kit's turret, but the
drone has the added advantage of being mobile and passive (you don't need to do
anything to help it once you've made it). Its main use is as backup fire to an
already powerful squad, as it's rare to see it take down an enemy by itself,
but it can certainly add to the chaos that you want to throw at your foes.
Because it relies on the spotting abilities of you and your squad, it works
better when there are more people around spotting things for it.

The Accipiter is selected and used just like the Otus. It's held as a remote in
your hand and, when the button is pressed, the drone will appear over your
head. The drone spins constantly until it finds a painted target in any
direction (its 360 degree range is another advantage over the support turret).
Like the Otus, if it's destroyed, you must find another one to use it again.
Both drones hover over your critically wounded body until you're forced to
respawn, but it's rare for the Accipiter to continue fighting once you've been
taken down, as there are no longer any eyes on the battlefield to find targets
for what is essentially a blind drone.

Though the Accipiter is the final crowning achievement of the squad leader
unlock line, it may be the most difficult to find an effective use for. Its
firepower is simply not as strong or accurate as you'd want it to be and,
because it relies on you and your squad to paint targets for it, it's a lot
more likely that you'll just shoot what you saw, yourself. The drone also
suffers from the same visibility problems as the Otus, with the added drawback
of the drone making a very loud and distinct noise, further pointing you out to
the enemy. The drone is by no means useless, but it may not be the best thing
for smaller or less organized squads (hence the limitation of only squads with
three or more members being allowed to use it). However, when squads are large
enough that tactical data is no longer that much of a benefit and a beacon has
already been placed, a little extra firepower can be the icing on a good
squad's cake.

The Accipiter only awards points as a weapon for the squad leader, meaning if
it takes out a target, the squad leader gets one kill point. Because of this,
it doesn't contribute to the squad's bonus points, as squad leaders get no
bonus for following their own commands. The Accipiter can only be used by squad
leaders who both have it, the Otus, and the SLSB unlocked and have three or
more squad members in their squad at the time.



VI. Field Upgrades
----------------------------


The field upgrade system is a per-game award system for squads that make and
perform commands effectively. Your squad's progress in this system is indicated
by a green bar in the upper left-hand corner of the interface. As squad bonus
points are earned through normal actions within the radius of a squad's attack
or defend command, this bar fills up bit by bit. When full, you and your squad
will get a message that a field upgrade is available and you will hear a little
notification noise.

To unlock your field upgrade, press enter to go into the kit selection menu. At
the top of the menu, there should be three options, one for your map, one for
customization, and one for field upgrades. The field upgrade menu will simulate
an unlock screen as if you had just gained one unlock point. This means that
you can unlock any one item available to you at that time. After you've
selected your item, be sure to go to the customization menu and add the
unlocked item to your kit. You will be able to spawn with it the next time you
respawn. These upgrades will be available to you for the remainder of your time
on the server, even if the game ends or you change squads or teams.

The maximum number of field upgrades you can have is ten. You will continue
gaining field upgrades after this, but since you can only unlock one item per
tree in the unlock system, you will have all your next unlocks available after
ten upgrades. If you have grenades unlocked already, this number becomes nine,
because you are not allowed to get any field upgrades in the "player abilities"
tree, other than grenades (this means you cannot unlock sprint boosts
temporarily).

This system isn't really much of a boost to your squad power, but rather a
reward to the squad leader and the squad members for doing their jobs
correctly. Its most obvious use is to test out the next upgrade available to
you to see if you might like to unlock it permanently. For squad leaders,
however, the unlocks can be used to unlock the next piece of squad leader
equipment, which means someone who just has a beacon unlocked can upgrade to an
Otus as well in the process of leading. Someone who finds themselves being a
squad leader with no previous unlocks can also use a few commands and gain an
upgrade to allow them to use the SLSB without unlocking it officially. It's
recommended, however, that aspiring squad leaders at least unlock beacons
permanently, since it's best to have one of those as fast as possible, and it
will give you the beacon icon in the squad menu, which might help you recruit
more soldiers at the beginning of a match. Squad leaders should only unlock all
three squad leader items if they're very serious about squad leading and have
points to spare. Unlocking the SLSB will be more than enough to do your job
well, and unlocking the Otus will give you quick access to the Accipiter via
field upgrades if you command effectively.



VII. Making the Right Choices
----------------------------


   A. Server

Choosing the right server when it comes to squad play can be tricky. After all,
a server full of lone-wolves one night may be a fully VoIPed clan war the next
night. Battlefield 2142 allows you to view your history of servers and click a
little "plus" sign to add a server to your favorites list, so if you have a
particularly good run on a server be sure to mark it as your favorite.

The first thing to look for in a good server is, of course, speed. Make sure
you have a server with a good ping, preferably in low double-digit numbers.
With a good connection, it's not unheard of to get a single-digit ping with
some servers if they're close enough to you. Make sure the stability of the
server is also in check. Just because a server has a low-ping doesn't mean it's
lag-free. This is of particular concern in titan-mode games, which tax a
server's resources much more heavily than conquest games. Never join a titan
game with more than forty-eight people, as this is a recipe for laggy
frustration.

Once you have a fast and stable server, take into account the server's rules.
Some servers have no team damage, which you may or may not like. Some severs do
not allow APM mines to harm your teammates. This can lower the number of
teamkills from those mines, but can dramatically increase the number of normal
kills from them, which can either be useful or frustrating depending on your
style.

Also, you'll want to make sure the map rotation fits your style. Some servers
alternate between conquest and titan maps, which can be bad if you only like
one or the other, while other servers may be 24/7 of a certain kind of map,
which can be good if you like one map in particular, but bad if you like
variety.

One thing to also look out for is clan presence in servers. Often times, a
clan-owned server can be very pleasant and fun, especially if the clan is
well-organized and you can play with a few members. However, some clans will
design a server specifically for the purpose of loading all their members onto
one team, then destroying anyone else who comes onto the server. If you see
this happening, you'll probably not want to support their cheating unless your
team is actually putting up a good fight.

Perhaps most importantly to the squad-minded person, however, is the game-end
policy of the server. Some servers will automatically swap the teams when each
round is over. This can be very detrimental to squad structure because each
time the server swaps the teams, all the squads are deleted and must be
reformed. Because most lone wolves are just lone wolves because they forget to
join a squad, these servers often will only have about five or six people in
squads after the swap. In addition, you will lose any progress your squad had
to the next field upgrade and there's a high likelihood that you won't have the
same squad leader and members again. Because of this, these server types aren't
recommended for squad play. The purpose of swapping teams is to make the game
more balanced, but since all of the same team members are swapped, it rarely
has this effect. Servers that don't do this can suffer from heavily one-sided
games, but this is simply because good squads aren't wiped from the server
repeatedly. If you find yourself on the losing side on one of these servers,
try forming a solid squad to fight the organization of the other team. It's
very possible to change the course of an entire game by leading one good squad.

Finally, you'll want to consider the number of people and the capacity of the
server. Ultra-small servers can make for a very interesting tactical game,
while larger games can provide more excitement and action, as well as more
squad and point opportunities. Just be aware that games that have too many
people may not run smoothly and may result in unavoidable death (such as being
killed directly after spawning) much more often. Games that have too few people
may not even start until more people join and, especially if the map's too big,
can be incredibly dull.

After a while, finding the perfect server for your taste should be easy. You
could even make some friends to make future squad work much easier and more
productive.


   B. Squad

Obviously, picking the right squad is one of the more important steps to using
the squad system effectively. The most sure-fire way to be in a good squad is
to learn to be a good squad leader and make it yourself. However, not all of us
want to be squad leaders, and even those who do would like a break now and
then. So how do you tell which squad to join? There are many signs.

First and foremost is the number of people in a squad. Squads that consist of a
leader alone are typically less likely to be serious, since a squad leader
without squad members is essentially a lone wolf with a number on top of his
head. If a squad leader needs members, he should invite some in the squad
management screen. Leaders with just two members are also not the first choice
squads, as they may not have been working well enough to gain a following, or
they may be a couple of soldiers in a squad for a specific purpose, like
manning a gunship (in which case the squad should be locked). The ideal number
is between three and five (six obviously wouldn't work at all; the squad would
be full). If you joined a three person squad, it would become a three member,
one leader squad, which is ideal for most situations, and two more members
could only help more.

The second thing you'll want to look at is the names of the squad and the names
of the people in the squad. On occasion, you'll come across a squad full of
clan members with a little more space in it. If they welcome you (many of them
lock their squad), you can be pretty sure that they're working together, as
they at least know each other well enough to share a clan tag. Sometimes you'll
see squads with custom names, as well. Some good squad leaders try to advertise
that they know what they're doing with names like "teamwork" or "beacon".
Whatever they name it, the fact that they took the time to make a custom name
means they're at least serious enough to put a conscious effort into being a
squad leader, not just creating a squad on a whim.

You'll also want to check for the icon next to the squad leader's name. If they
have an extra icon in the shape of one of the three squad leader equipment
items, that means they are carrying that item. This is often the best sign you
can have that a squad leader is serious about their role because this means
they've spent enough time as a squad leader to want to spend unlock points on
squad leader equipment. Of course, there are people who want to unlock these
things just to experiment with them, so this rule doesn't always hold true.

If you're very determined to find the right squad leader, you can even go as
far as to check stats and ranks. A squad leader with a higher rank, especially
if he has squad leader equipment, is probably much more experienced than a
lower ranking squad leader. You could also look at the kill/death ratio and
teamwork scores of the squad members to see how high of a caliber the people
you're working with will be. This is all very specific data, however, and most
likely you won't want to take the time to consider all of it when you're just
trying to play the game.

Once you find the right squad, try to stay with it as long as possible. Get to
know the habits of the leader and each member. Find out what kits each member
carries and plan accordingly. If you know certain members often play medics,
for example, try to travel with them for added protection. Working with each
other and knowing how everyone is going to act can help make a good squad a
great one.


   C. Squad Members

As a squad leader, you have the option of inviting soldiers to join your squad.
Though it's perfectly fine to just pick a list of members at random, it's
possible to be a bit more selective in your choices.

The first rule of squad recruiting is to go for lone wolves first. Open up all
the squads in the squad menu while choosing who to send invites to and try to
avoid sending invites to those who are already in squads, as they're most
likely to just ignore you. Since joining a squad is only a matter of hitting
the "page up" button, most lone wolves will join you pretty quickly. If you
don't get any answers, try a different group, or even try a few members who are
in a squad (especially one you notice to be flawed). In most cases, you should
at least be able to get two members to start. Once you have a couple, however,
the squad may be able to recruit for itself and gain five members over time.

If you're looking for a bit more of an A-team, you can actively try to get the
best soldiers on your team in your squad. Though this can often happen at
random anyway (you'll learn to love that mystery maniac who racks up a dozen
kills under your commands), you can look at the scores and kits of people to
try to assemble a more selective squad. However, since most squads are formed
at the beginning of games, it can be hard to tell which people have the most
potential. In this case, your best bet is to look at the report at the end of
the game and make a mental list of the "MVPs", then try to invite them first
thing. This works particularly well on servers that wipe the squad list each
round, though you'll only be able to keep that up for one game, obviously.

The rule for squad members goes double for squad leaders when it comes to
getting to know a good squad. Since you're the sub-commander of this group of
people, try to get to know the habits of each of them and work with that. Get
to know how fast they travel and how apt they are to follow orders and command
accordingly. And remember, if someone is acting like a fool or if there's
simply someone better out there, you can always kick the weakest link out.



VIII. Closing and Disclaimer
----------------------------


Thank you for reading my guide! My goal in writing this was to spread the idea
of good squad leading, so if you've learned something from this, try to share
it and make the game of Battlefield 2142 more fun for everyone!

I know that my guide was not perfect and there might be some flaws or missing
information. If you have any corrections (or compliments, tee-hee), send them
to karma 2142 @ yahoo . com (without spaces; added those to avoid spam
searchers). Please copy and paste the exact part of the guide that you're
correcting or commenting on so I know exactly what needs fixing. Also, by
writing any corrections to me, you agree to give me the right to paste your
words and name (not complete email) in future versions of the guide if I
choose. If you don't want your words or name used or want a different name
quoted, please say so within your correction. I will attempt to update this
guide when needed, especially after a patch.

Do not write me demanding any kinds of cheats, game hacks, CD keys or otherwise
illegal and undesirable requests. I will attempt to answer questions, if
needed, but I may not be able to get to everyone and some questions may be
answered within the guide or elsewhere. My priorities will be with the
corrections of the guide, itself.

This guide was written by Evan Good (AKA EvanBGood of GameFAQs, Karma of
BF2142, and Karma_Chameleon of BF2). This guide may not be displayed or
reproduced anywhere but the following websites:

- GameFAQs.com and its direct partners (via links)
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- Asylum-gameservers.com
- Supercheats.com
- Neoseaker.com

This guide may only be displayed elsewhere by the direct consent of the
author who may be contacted at the email address listed below.

If you have read this guide anywhere but the listed websites, please contact
this email address immediately. The email address again is:

karma2142 (at) yahoo (dot) com