NS2News | Faster than phasetech http://ns2news.org Wed, 18 May 2016 19:19:24 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.3.4 Time to F4 for ns2news.org http://ns2news.org/time-to-f4-for-some-of-us/ http://ns2news.org/time-to-f4-for-some-of-us/#comments Wed, 18 May 2016 16:52:15 +0000 http://ns2news.org/?p=3056 We’re announcing with sadness and melancholy the resigning of tudy, Yojimbo, d0py and myself (Pelargir) and the closure of NS2News.

I initially intended to lay down all the reasons that led to this decision to eventually, realize it would be better not stating or simply summarize in a few words only what pushed us to move away from the NS2News project.

Roughly speaking, we don’t have time – our team hasn’t been able to recruit more authors and our real life doesn’t allow us to maintain a suitable rate of articles. Keeping track on anything on NS2 requires a lot of time and piecing together newspost, is a fastidious job. Nonetheless, there’s more than that. There comes the actual state of the game. NS2News would’ve fit perfectly at the NS2 official release, now it’s too late and it can’t be built on drama or I don’t want it to rely on it, and a fortiori in regard of the latest events that keep popping up on NS2. Drama surrounds, encloses the whole community more and more day after day and I no longer share a vision where my work is limited to relating drama.

As for tudy, he was mainly our NSL intermediary and after his departure from the NSL staff for good – he sees no interest sticking around in the NS2News team.

For Yojimbo, he will be continuing to do what he loves best – outdoor fishing, house renovation and seeking other games to play, most likely Overwatch.

Lastly, Dopy will be unable to maintain ns2news by himself as it is far too big of a task to manage by himself thus he will also be leaving.

That was quite a pleasant adventure and we all grew from this experience, as short as it was.

We bid you all farewell, and have enjoyed serving you – the community!

 

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Brace yourselves, the door is about to open! A Siege+ preview. http://ns2news.org/brace-yourselves-the-door-is-about-to-open-a-siege-preview/ http://ns2news.org/brace-yourselves-the-door-is-about-to-open-a-siege-preview/#comments Sun, 15 May 2016 20:25:46 +0000 http://ns2news.org/?p=3059 SIEGE+ mod

Some of you may or may not be familiar with a mod whose humble beginnings began back in Natural Selection 1, here we have a fellow community modder that is attempting to bring his own vision of Siege into Natural Selection 2, Siege+.

Onos are known for being hard headed.

Onos are known for being hard headed.

Yojimbo – “First off, introduce yourself.”

Zycar – “My true modding experience started with Ns2, I purchased NS2 during alpha access. Gorge bots which places cysts for alien commander all around the map.
Later, some of us active players sent prototypes of automatic cyst chain placement ( and dying when cut ) functionality to Charlie … and thus we have cyst chains as we know them now.
I had a week off last Christmas while I was working on siege map for another siege mod which was

already released on NS2. It didn’t work out as I hoped, as I finished map with regular vanilla rules in mind, the original author of NS2Siege changed the game rules to a point where the map was almost became unplayable.

At this point I abandoned mapping for a while and put together another mod for NS2 (GunGame) mode in  a few weeks. This was great exercise to learn how to properly write lua code (with minimum maintenance requirement).
In its final stages the mod required complex stuff like HUD changes and custom map design, I saw that the mod itself was in good shape (even after recent patches), I was pretty convinced and ready for next challenge.”

You can play siege anytime by joining "Wooza's Siege+ Back to the roots! (approved by Nalice)"

You can play siege anytime by joining “Wooza’s Siege+ Back to the roots! (approved by Nalice)”

Yojimbo – “Can you explain to people who aren’t familiar with your mod, what is siege+ exactly?”

Zycar – “The two teams will spawn on their side of the map with a LOCKED door(s) in middle of the map (front door). The ready phase is a time of truce, this allows teams to research upgrades, build defenses around the map and prepare for the upcoming fight. After a set time (designated by the mapper) an alarm will sound, the front door(s) open, allowing combat. After a second designated time, a second door will open (siege door). This door allows marines to reach a room giving ARC firing range on the hives. Winning conditions are the same as vanilla NS2, kill all Hives or CC’s. Also, most of the gameplay after first set of door(s) opens is basically aliens going on an offensive and taking over the marine base before siege room opens. It’s beautiful because both sides gets resources, meaning full upgrades for both sides.”

Prepare to fight off anything that comes through the main siege doors!

Prepare to fight off anything that comes through the main siege doors!

Yojimbo – “What was your reason to re-envisioning this mod?”

Zycar – “Well, originally I was asked to help restart the original siege mod called NS2Siege by community members who were not so happy about the changes that had taken place. The original creator changed rules of the mod drastically and once he got rid of commanders and implemented “pre-placed” structures the game was completely different. This was the fire needed to start working on Siege+ (as we call it). We sat down and ask ourselves what we do expect from siege mod and came to three basic points: 1. gameplay resembling vanilla as much as possible, 2. doors to separate teams during preparation time and 3. a truce until doors are opened.”

If you manage to defend against the aliens, a secondary siege door opens, giving you the ability to arc the hives from relative safety!

If you manage to defend against the aliens, a secondary siege door opens, giving you the ability to arc the hives from relative safety!

Yojimbo – “How many work hours have you put into it so far?”

Zycar – “In total, I have invested 40 to 60 hours so far. Basically a Programmer never stops working on challenge he’s dealing with. You think about solutions when you lie down and try to sleep or during morning coffee break. But basically initial submission of Siege+ to Steam workshop happened like three weeks ago? During this time I was not playing NS2 and investing all my free time to this mod.”

Yojimbo – “Do you have any plans for any future additions to the mod?”

Zycar – “Since siege+ mod has hit beta stage, we will definitely add more to this mod. In the future we will start hunting for bugs and small gameplay tweaks to prevent exploits while paying respects to vanilla gameplay of course. Next stage is updating the visuals (various assets, timers indicators on HUD, etc) and last but not least we are encouraging mappers to contribute to creating some more awesome maps!

The Khammander has tricks of his own!

The Khammander has tricks of his own!

Yojimbo – “Any advice for would be/aspiring modders?”

Zycar – “Please don’t be shy, set your goals and milestones. Keep them simple and clear and you will reach your destination. Not everything you write might be great, I understand it might be difficult at the beginning but when you don’t stop and keeps going you can create something valuable from nothing and trust me lot of players will admire your work at the end.

siege6

You can subscribe to Siege+ by going to the Natural Selection 2 steam workshop.

Thanks for taking your time to parttake in this interview Zycar, I wish you all the best, I’ll see you behind the door 😉

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How important are mods to your everyday NS2 game? http://ns2news.org/how-important-are-mods-to-your-everyday-ns2-game/ http://ns2news.org/how-important-are-mods-to-your-everyday-ns2-game/#comments Tue, 03 May 2016 17:53:08 +0000 http://ns2news.org/?p=3023 Before starting this article, sincere apologies for the lack of news lately, the NS2News team has been/is really busy IRL and cannot publish news at our usual rate.

 

A few weeks ago, I asked the community to answer a poll on the UWE forums. This poll followed the previous events that lead to the temporary shut down of CompMod and NS2+ (check our prior article for more details).

So here are the results (136 voters). Please, this graphic does not represent in any way a genuine tendency of the NS2 players but expresses the opinion merely of those passing on the forums from time to time. The community includes various and large ideas and opinions that haven’t been voiced in this poll. Some did not find an adequate response and decided not to participate.

eJwNyMENwyAMAMBdGACDLAzJNhZBECmJEXZfVXdv7nlf91mX290wm7oDHKdWWYdXk8W9-S7Sr8bzVF_lBjbjOu72mELMIeVMGPJGKZcS6S3CEmJJhHGLFBChDl7m59Pd7w_BvCHq.PWiEOfaLpnKcDiXEOTGUqLy2v4I

We can notice two major trends. 47% of the voters wouldn’t play NS2 if not for the mods (such as NS2+, Shine Administration, etc) while 37% of the voters could live without mods but enjoy playing them or with them nonetheless. Only 12% of the voters play modded games exclusively (CompMod/competitive players mostly). The tendency shows that only a handful of people pick out vanilla servers, clean of any mod that influences gameplay or aims to provide a better experience. It can be explained by the current representation of the mods ingame. Not many servers do not have NS2+ mounted for instance and even those who wish to play a 100% vanilla experience may have some troubles finding their path across the large amount of modded servers.

What can we learn from those results? Whether you like them or not, mods have become part of what’s NS2 is today and even if a big part of the community would stick around if mods were gone, a sizeable portion would definitely quit the game. Not having NS2+ for a few days has been very upsetting for some people and this situation shows the serious impact and negative consequences mods can have upon the community itself. The community has evolved and adapted following mods that for the most, filled the gap that UWE left behind when they first moved to Subnautica but even when they were initially developing the game. Mods such as Siege, the Faded, Combat exist because the vanilla game does not offer all the possibilities it could. Mods like NS2+, Shine and CompMod either present new options or a different balance that for some groups in the community, cruelly lack in vanilla. UWE has allowed its community to build and rely on mods. One might claim they’ve done this to make sure mods fix stuff they couldn’t, or didn’t want to do themselves. One might say they’ve done this to offer the community the ability to make NS2 a greater game. Mods allow their creators to move faster than UWE, whenever something needs fixing, it can be done through mods. The downside of leaning on mods is obviously some modders becoming necessary and whenever a mod breaks (due to new official updates or conflicting mods), the burden of resolving the issue lies on the modder.

Very hard to imagine NS2 nowadays without any mods though, they’re what makes it especial, unique and awesome. Today, we can honestly characterize two different developers on NS2: the UWE team that aims for the greater good and the community in the whole, without making distinctions between each individual or group and the modders that become part of the game too and who provide regular updates as well with the explicit goal of making the player’s experience easier and better. One might say that if one of those two sides vanishes, the game would become a sadder experience. These last few months, some mod features have been implemented (Shine and NS2+ options for example) onto the vanilla game and most of the PDT (Paid Dev Team) members today have been modding on NS2 even before being hired by UWE so we can frankly say the game wouldn’t have gotten this far without the help of modders and their amazing work.

If you’re fond of what’s happening in the modding scene, please, check this post by Ghoul about the latest changes that have impacted NS2 gamemodes. If the linked post still makes no sense to you, have a look at our previous article, which attempts to make things more clear.

 

Feel free to share your opinion on the matter in the comments below.

We’ve started another poll a couple of weeks ago, go ahead and vote!

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B294 repercussions over modded/large servers http://ns2news.org/b294-repercussions-over-moddedlarge-servers/ http://ns2news.org/b294-repercussions-over-moddedlarge-servers/#comments Sat, 16 Apr 2016 19:48:28 +0000 http://ns2news.org/?p=2979 Please take note that this article doesn’t aim to foster any particular side of the current debate. It only provides some questioning and tries to lay down a quick and synthetical chronology of the recent events. 

 

If you’re active on UWE forums or Discord server, you might have fallen across some heated debate starring NS2Large servers community (namely Wooza’s community) and the other side consisting of anti-large servers players or those simply providing their opinion on one of the latest change that happened with Build 294.

Everything started with Build 294 (link of the changelog attached). One of the tweaks and improvements shows: “The “NS2” gamemode tag is now selected by default at the server browser instead of the “All” tab”. What does this mean? You know it, when you launch the game, one server distinguises itself from the server browser due to its higher amount of slots. Whenever this server is full, it shows at the top of your server browser and hides <24 slot servers. Rookies tend to join the first server they fall across. However, Unknown Worlds (UWE) has signified many times that modded servers but also large servers do not represent an accurate representation of the game and how it is intended to play (rookies get a pop up saying pretty much this when they first join such a server). To be perfectly honest, the game was conceived, according to the NS2 creator, to be played on a 6 vs. 6 format (also used for competitive games) but most public games do not take place on such small servers, quite the contrary. Right now, any server with >24 slots shows on the server browser as NS2Large. Wooza’s servers are not the only one concerned by this update but take note that those affected by this change does not necessarily disagree with the intent or even the change itself. Although TGNS is affected by this change, they do not share and support in any case Wooza’s complaints:

There’s an oversight in the ns2large designation wherein the server browser counts physical slots instead of the more relevant player slots. TGNS is 8v8, but our spec slots take us beyond 24 physical slots.” from Wyzcrak (TGNS admin)

However, modded servers are also concerned: The Faded, Last Stand, etc. They’re not ignored by this change, and unfortunately, the current modding scene of NS2 hasn’t been proudly active recently. By pushing away rookies from those servers (assuming they can’t filter servers by themselves by clicking on ALL in the menu), mods would tend to become the privilege of non rookies players.

4920_screenshots_20160415232956_1

NS2Large and modded servers do not any longer show up on the server browser by default.

Then comes the issue, some large servers players have started protesting against this change that killed/kills/would kill their community for good. They believe that this tweak affects the former player traffic that allowed such servers to survive. As a complaint, Wooza’s servers got shut down temporarily. Comments and threads started to pop on both UWE Discord and forums. You can find the most scathing thread right here. Conspiracy was evoked. UWE does its best to ensure the death of large servers by attacking them slowly but surely. Apparently, UWE without officially pushing to death in one strike large servers would be time after time promoting updates that will, in the end, cause the shut down of those servers.

Until UWE’s reaction through BeigeAlert:

“Every single change we have made to the game since November has been with the express purpose of improving the new player experience. That’s it. We’re not shutting down Woozas, or any other server. We’re not going out of our way to make it especially difficult to increase the player count. All we’ve done is change the default filter to the regular sized ns2 servers. This is done so that new players actually get to experience NS2 as it was intended.
Maybe you like the large servers. Good for you. But that is not how NS2 was intended to be played.”

And the final say by rantology:

“The change to the default server browser filters will not be reverted. We are, however, going to be continuing to make improvements to it not only to improve functionality but also QoL improvements in our weekly updates as we work toward the ultimate endgoal of a total browser revision. Things like having it remember your filters on startup (which is already being tested), and perhaps showing favorites regardless of filter come to mind.”

One of our testimony from a Wooza’s player:

“I only wanna play on large servers and only on Woozas servers. I will not play NS2 if Wooza will close down. I like to play on large servers. Its more fun and you can play longer games. I don´t die so easy on small servers. Wooza playground and the players is my family”

 

Feel free to go through this thread to get a more detailed point of view on the situation. Warning, some comments are just gross and silly. I’m quoting Puphball in this thread who seemed to have underlined the issue which has been raised by many complainers in the large servers community:

“You guys may not realize it, but a modded server won’t survive unless it’s given an audience. UWE has effectively starved these servers of rookies and players who don’t use filters, and these mods will eventually fade into obscurity because of it. Look at Faded and Last Stand, they died even though they had Mod Spotlights and everything. You can’t keep a server seeded unless it has a consistent audience, would you not agree?”

The relevancy of this change can be questioned and the subject is up to debate. This article tends to be as neutral as possible on this matter. You are, however, free to discuss it in the comments below. Do you think new players shouldn’t join large or modded servers? Do you think this latest change would achieve its purpose? Don’t you think, on the contrary, this change would be positive towards rookies but at the expense of the large servers community?

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NSL now runs 7 vs. 7 casual gathers! http://ns2news.org/nsl-now-runs-7-vs-7-casual-gathers/ http://ns2news.org/nsl-now-runs-7-vs-7-casual-gathers/#comments Thu, 07 Apr 2016 15:10:09 +0000 http://ns2news.org/?p=2924 Some of you might be accustomed to the NSL gather-system already: In a gather two impromptu teams of 6 players face each other. There are 6 players per team to resemble competitive matches. Gathers let competitive players or players who are not familiar with the NSL train and have some fun between matches, scrims, or public games.

A couple of days ago, Sephy and the NSL (Gather Admin) added a new gather format for newcomers, people who’ve never played competitive before, or folks who didn’t enjoy the regular 6 vs. 6 version. This 7 vs. 7 casual gather system now runs within the NSL. To quote the original NSL news:

“Obviously, the atmosphere will be different in those two formats. The goal of the “classic” gathers is to have a place to practice much like a PCW. This means having players who want to try their hardest in order to win. These games will be more tense and stressful. This is not recommended for newcomers, and we may eventually set requirements to join them.

 The second format is more friendly. It’s designed to let new players have a good taste of what competitive gaming can be. Naturally, players will make mistakes in these kinds of games in order to become better. The goal here is to learn how to block lanes, how to trap lifeforms, and to test differents tactics to learn current meta. It’s a training ground which will lead you to the next competitive steps.”

For casual gathers a new option is available on the gather page. To use this system all you need is an account on www.ensl.org and you’re ready to join gathers right away. Any casual gather you’re in starts as soon as 14 players join it. Admittedly this can take a while, but you can spend the time by playing some public games in the meantime. The 7 vs. 7 system also aims to provide a different atmosphere from regular 6 vs. 6 gathers: You may find it more friendly and pleasant. It is unlikely that you fall between very high skilled players (who prefer classic gathers), still you may find some veterans who’d be glad to help you out practicing.

We recommend you to give it a try, especially if you’ve never played gathers in the past. Casual 7 vs. 7 gathers are a bit closer to competitive matches, while still being relaxed and public. Be patient if you sign in as this system is just released and it might require some time to get the ball rolling. To speed things up be sure to invite your friends and get an even more enjoyable experience.

Check the NSL original news for further information.

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NS2News: authors recruitment! http://ns2news.org/ns2news-authors-recruitment/ http://ns2news.org/ns2news-authors-recruitment/#comments Mon, 28 Mar 2016 09:09:43 +0000 http://ns2news.org/?p=2897 You may have figured out by yourselves, although NS2News regularly posts one or two (when we’re lucky) articles a week, our team is losing momentum and can’t afford to publish as many blog posts as we would like to. For this very reason, we aim to recruit new members, mainly authors but not limited to those. Quite the contrary, if you have any other skill that might be helpful for NS2News, go ahead and get in touch with one of us. You do not need to publish articles this often, whenever you get some free time, even to provide only one article a month, your input and work would be valuable to us, and accordingly, to the community. All our staff has its own tool of communication, so you won’t be left out there alone and could even join us to give some feedbacks or ideas for some potential work.

As for the NS2 communities, feel free to poke any of us again if you want us to share any information from your side: mods being updated, servers being shut down temporary, community events, anything that might be relevant and if you feel hesitant, don’t be and contact us.

On a side-note: we now have a NSL Matches tab on our website. It’ll get updated whenever a match will be officially played. Thanks tudy for keeping this up to date.

Added note by tudy: Maybe some of you are willing to help NS2News, but are pondering “yeah, but how might I be of any help…”. There are more ways to help us you might have thought about! I made a short list of “Vacancies” from the top of my head, but there are certainly more. Just think creatively. Check the list out here.

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NSL Season 9 starts! What to watch out for? – Part 3 http://ns2news.org/nsl-season-9-starts-what-to-watch-out-for-part-3/ http://ns2news.org/nsl-season-9-starts-what-to-watch-out-for-part-3/#comments Sun, 20 Mar 2016 18:51:21 +0000 http://ns2news.org/?p=2831 Check here for part 1 and part 2.

It’s that time again, folks: The Natural Selection League (NSL) is on our doorsteps – and it will be exciting! The ninth season suffered a two weeks delay, because of this little story here. By now things are sorted out and as a side-effect the NSL and UWE/PDT both spend effort into improving the communication to each other. To that end rantology, a well respected NSL-veteran of the former team titus and member of the PDT, has weekly chats with the admins of the NSL. For the first meetings PDT’s tournament-mode for NS2 was on the agenda. Surely the NSL and UWE/PDT can help each other out. Just recently NSL-players reported a bug to the developers, which they had not been aware of.

But now without further ado, the top-teams of Sesaon 9!

Division 1

As in Division 2 we have 8 teams.

  • I’m disappointing
  • JUST THE TIP
  • Kaamos
  • Lucky Chams
  • Mikillæti
  • Pell-Mell
  • seize & decyst
  • Vanquish

Let’s start at the top, which is currently spelled Lucky Chams. The NA-team, second at the end of Season 8, beat the NA/EU-mix SpookerZ in the playoffs. Noteworthy leaves from the team are ADHD and tap. As replacement Syknik makes a return. Call it chams, or just call them lucky, but this is one of the strongest teams there is in NS2 these days. So, who is going to stop this powerhouse?

Well, maybe the guys, who go under the name of Vanquish. NA-player tap (an ex-member of Lucky Chams) gathered some of the best European players and some of the oldest veterans as well: this team is peppered with Season-winners and world-champions. Usually we see in the top Division a close fight between the top NA-team and the top EU-team. In Season 8, that pattern was partially broken with Lucky Chams and SpookerZ going into the finals. It seems the Euros didn’t like that and forged a strong alliance to challenge the Americans.

But there are more teams in Division 1 you should keep a close eye upon:

  • Mikillæti – “Much Noise”: Top-player Zäföd (S5 winner with 2eZ., S7 Finalist with DIY) put this EU-team together. It features a mix of players ranging from veterans to relatively new guys, which had been recruited from low to high divisions. Will this concept work or will it be just a great hullabaloo?
  • Pell-Mell – From the New World: RolliePollie and WhySoSerious  – the leaders of Pell-Mell – are a nice example of what you can achieve in 2000 hours NS2. Working their way up from Division 4 all the way to the top division. And not only that. They are trailing the best teams very, very closely. In Season 8 Pell-Mell missed the finals because of direct comparison with SpookerZ. Pell-Mell clearly belonged to the top3 teams of NS2 in Season 8. Can they defend this claim in a Division of 8 teams? Their lineup stays relatively stable with two additions: CRaZyCAT (Handwashers) and A2K (Pulverize Massacre).
  • I’m disappointing – Return of Veterans: Watch this team closely, as they are not your usual 3-Spanish, 3-Skandinavian team. Put together from Ex-Godar players this is a team consisting of many players who celebrate their return to competitive NS2. Some of them appeared in competitive play over 2 years ago! Don’t be mislead by their trolling team-picture or their team name. This team will be a force to reckon with.
  • Kaamos – There must be a Finnish team: Finnish teams have a long and successful tradition in competitive NS2. And yes, this is the second team with a band-name in Division 1. Similar to I’m disappointing a lot of veterans celebrate a comeback to competitive NS2. Of the players in the lineup who had been recently active one should mention (Malware from Pulverize Massacre) and the NSL-“rookie” X2Y (All Terrain Vehicles). X2Y just made his NSL debut in this years Newcomer Tournament.
  • seize & decyst – Even more  comebacks: This EU/NA-team features two comebacks as well: phonee and ydy havn’t been seen for a good while in a regular season. Beside these two we also see BauerJankins and OneHit (Bad Mannered), Alite (Weld Mannered), malx (caste), and ragnasty (tau-9). Bauer and OneHit joined this team just a few weeks ago and pushed it over the needed 6 players. Can seize & decyst find their rhythm quickly enough?
  • JUST THE TIP – …is larger than the bottom?: This looks very much like a new edition of the team SHAFT. Five of the 8 players are from the former AUS-NS2-League team. New in the lineups are the players from Like A Glove – Lucas2616 and clowning – as well as the NSL-rookie navoj.

Only a few teams in this season’s Division 1 have a record to show. It will be very interesting to see where each of them sorts in. I am quite certain we will see some surprises in the next week. Also Division 1 looks very tight to me. I’m looking forward to many exciting and high-level games!

What to watch out for in the first week: seize & decyst vs. Mikillæti! Both are newly formed teams with some good players in their rows. It is hard to estimate their strengths upfront, but this match will give us some good insights in how far both teams are with their teamplay.

This concludes the third and last part of our coverage. I hope you are excited as me for Season 9. Good games to everyone and have fun!

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NSL Season 9 starts! What to watch out for? – Part 2 http://ns2news.org/nsl-season-9-starts-what-to-watch-out-for-part-2/ http://ns2news.org/nsl-season-9-starts-what-to-watch-out-for-part-2/#comments Sun, 20 Mar 2016 14:00:04 +0000 http://ns2news.org/?p=2822 Read the first part here.

It’s that time again, folks: The Natural Selection League (NSL) is on our doorsteps – and it will be exciting! The NSL’s ninth season presents us 23 teams. We can also look forward to 4 custom maps: Jambi (by now a staple. A project under the lead of xctmen), Mineral (MasterG), Nexus (Malx), and Docking2 (Mephilles). The NSL provides a major source of feedback for these exciting maps and as a sideeffect provide us with interesting matches.

The tournament officially starts tomorrow and its playoffs can be expected for the mid of May: that gives us just enough time to get prepared and excited for the upcoming matches.

In this second part of our 3-part coverage we go to the mid-levels: Division 2. Let’s dive in!

Division 2

Not less than 8 teams can be found in Division 2:

  • Dies Irae
  • Flightless Lerks
  • FunnyBubblers
  • HBZ
  • Like A Glove
  • OverThePantsHandjob
  • Potent
  • TAW.af

We gonna start with the “old” guys: HBZ. One of the oldest competitive teams is back! Playing from the first(!) NS2-Season the German team disappeared after Season 6. Now they registered again. We could fill pages with the players signing in and out of this team and their results in each tournament. But let’s focus on the current HBZ instead. The new HBZ, you could say. A whole bunch of German(-speaking) players set their name on the long list of HBZ’s representatives: izo, homba_gomba, Link, daemon, Razghul, LevSteel, and Luchs are the newest additions. I expect them to be regulars on the fields. But you should not rule out long-yeared HBZ veterans like dePara (joined November 2012) either.

From last season we see some familiar teams:

  • Flightless Lerks – the Battle of S8Div3…: Flightless Lerks sweeped Division 3 last Season. By taking 15 points from possible 16 and winning the playoffs they made a clear statement: we are Division 2 material! This team came a long way in short time: they were founded as newcomer team just in the Summer NCT 2015. Some of the Lerks flew away, though, by now: six(!) members left according to the NSL-pages. As replacements the US team recruited medi0crates, GaussWaffle, and gojilla into the Lerk-Force.
  • FunnyBubblers – …continues in Div 2: The only team in last Season’s Div3, who stood a chance against the Lerks was the Russian Bubblers. I’m looking forward to see these two teams competing against each other again. The Bubblers are no small team – and you can find the weirdest names in their lineup… (try pronouncing “iddqdidkfa” in a cast). As new additions we will see 101 and Myx with them. Rottweler and Gildrap0n wiggled away though.
  • Like A Glove – Misfits from Downunder: The teamleaders openyafaceup and Calmos had 4 leaves in the past: woot and Lucas2616 went off for AUS-team Just the Tip. flow and Dawei fell off the NS2-Earth completely. So Like A Glove surely needs some more hands on deck: visor and Stalemate picked up the gauntlet. Like A Glove tied with KKK in last Season for first place, but then gave way for the Finns in the playoffs. How will they do with considerably less Finns around this time?
  • TAW.af – One. Of. Us: The second TAW team in Season 9. The “af” abbreviates “as friends” of course. Build from the Season 8 TAW teams their lineup got streamlined for Division 2. In contrast to TAWmageddon these guys had a full month preparation with only little changes to their roster (Preda left to help out in TAWmageddon). So they had enough time to put their abbreviation into effect.

And we also have some “new” kids on the block:

  • Dies Irae – The last song: Long time member and singing caster Ixian gathered his personal apocalyptic army: inmate (Aegis), Nightsy (Pulverize Massacre), maxamus and Deathcore (GIEF ROBOT), sphere (KKK), Littleevilwolf (last seen on She-Wolves in 2014), and Kelmops (Jolly Cooperation). With that lineup Dies Irae brings together an interesting mix of veterans. If they sync quickly they might indeed dissolve their enemies into ashes.
  • OverThePantsHandjob – PG-13: Simba of Lucky Chams made an “ad” in the NSL forums: he wants to bring together highly dedicated NA players and teach them best practices. After a few weeks OTPH erected: Exactly six players. Three know each other already from the Leftovers/caste (Tico, MindBoggling, radionaut). There is also veteran Kaneh giving a comeback, Knox (Get Spit On), and NSL-rookie Meghan. I can only imagine the team’s hard-pressing excitement for the upcoming matches.
  • Potent – The best Newcomer: The winner of the 2016 Newcomer Tournament entries seasonal play straight up in the second division. Founder tussio brought a capable troop together right from the start. Also our editor Yojimbo makes his appearance in seasonal play again – after a long hiatus. With their newest additions migalski, mst3kld, and Snowy this team also brings some years of NSL-experience into their lineup. So far this team’s rise had been steep – how far will their potential carry?

What to watch out for in the first week: Potent vs. Dies Irae! This will be a very interesting clash of two very different teams. It is a matchup between the hottest team of the Newcomer Tournament and a squad of year-old veterans!

This concludes the second part of our coverage. In the third and last part we take a look at the top teams of Season 9.

 

 

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NSL Season 9 starts! What to watch out for? http://ns2news.org/nsl-season-9-starts-what-to-watch-out-for/ http://ns2news.org/nsl-season-9-starts-what-to-watch-out-for/#comments Sun, 20 Mar 2016 10:00:32 +0000 http://ns2news.org/?p=2817 It’s that time again, folks: The Natural Selection League (NSL) is on our doorsteps – and it will be exciting! In the NSL’s ninth season we will see 23 teams. That’s more than in Season 7 (20). It is also the first time the number of teams for a season increases.

The tournament officially starts tomorrow and its playoffs can be expected the mid of May: that gives us just enough time to get prepared and excited for the upcoming matches.

In this 3-part coverage we have a look on the divisions, the teams, and the first matches you should watch out for. Let’s start from bottom to top:

Division 3

in Division 3 we have 7 teams:

  • All Terrain Vehicles
  • Angry Chickens
  • F4
  • .js
  • Schicht im Schacht
  • Sector Plus
  • TAWmageddon

Of these seven teams three come directly from the Newcomer Tournament (NCT) held this Winter (marked above bold). It is always nice to see, that the NCT fulfills its purpose and new people become interested in competitive play. I wish all of these new teams a good luck and a great experience for their first season:

  • All Terrain Vehicles: This wild mix boards EU and NA players. Leader Milez drove ATV in their first roadtrip straight to the finals of the newcomer tournament.
  • F4: Founded by veteran 101 this Russian team went into the playoffs of the newcomer tournament as well. Will their name be a motto or rather a command to the opponent?
  • .js: A NA-team speckled with a few euros and the rare sight of an Argentinian player. In the NCT playoffs .js was outgunned by All Terain Vehicles. Now it is time for a rematch!

From previous seasons we know three teams already: Schicht im Schacht, Sector Plus and Angry Chickens. Their lineups changed only a little:

  • Angry Chickens – Noone leaves the coop! Rooster Crowbar keeps a strict, well… roster in his henhouse. No new players are registered on the NSL-pages. Neither are there any leaves since the end of S8. You cannot spell continuity any clearer than that. In Season 8 the Chickens had a rough time (3 points from an all-loose). From personal experience I can say the Chickens have improved, though, since Crowbar joined them on the field. And with players, who know each other already very well they might get some nice synergy flowing.
  • SchichtImSchacht S9 – They keep digging: Besides its name SiS takes no break and keeps carving into NSL’s history. This time by adding a “S9” to its name. The team – dubbed by non-Germans simply as “Mega’s team” – lost some fellows in the tunnels, though: X_o (Vanquish), d3Base (-), and Absurdon (TAWmageddon) did not make the transition to SiS S9. As replacement SchokoKrossi joined the shaft-party. SiS – without the “S9” – made 5 points (1 win, 1 draw) in Season 8. Let’s see how the German-speaking team handles its leaves for Season 9.
  • SectorPlus – Back from Season 7: One of the two Russian teams in this division (the other being F4). Spawned in the Newcomer Tournament Summer 2015 they are back now for Season 9. Their lineup underwent some changes: SashaRX, keo, and YHero (all former Handwashers) replace Lexycom and Psycho. The last appearance made Sector Plus in Season 7 getting 1 point there. How will they do after their recreational break?

Last but not least in our list is TAWmageddon. This team had some big revisions even though it never played an official match. TAWmageddon amalgates players from the Season 8 TAW teams (TAWxic, TAWtoise) plus an external addition: Absurdon (from Schicht im Schacht). They state “The End is near”. Ironic, because for them it is rather the beginning of a beginning: with two sudden “last minute” replacements (Tyrwing and kmacg leaving for Mikillæti; DCDarkling, Wizzzfizzz, and Preda joining) this team needs to find their balance quickly to avoid the cataclysm.

What to watch out for in the first week: No time to loose, All Terrain Vehicles and .js meet each other already in week one. Both NA/EU-mixes had some time to refine their play. But who will have the upper hand in a proper 4-round match?

Stay tuned for the second part of the Kick-Off-Coverage, where we have a look on Division 2!

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Natural Selection Idol – NS Songs http://ns2news.org/natural-selection-idol-ns-songs/ http://ns2news.org/natural-selection-idol-ns-songs/#comments Tue, 15 Mar 2016 16:31:15 +0000 http://ns2news.org/?p=2804 Since the official release of the first Natural Selection in 2002 and with its successor Natural Selection 2 ten years later in 2012, the community has shown great musical creativity.

You can’t have missed the famous NS1 remakes but if you ever did, this article will enlighten you and provide you with some Natural Selection lore and culture. Unfortunately, it became quite difficult to find information about the whereabouts of their authors so I leave most of this field blank. However, you can find the names of each particular authors below each video. There were two reasons behind those songs, a bunch were made by the FFT clan as they ran the ‘official’ web NS Radio station. The other was AUS NS (now AusNS2), who used to hold music competitions.
Don’t hesitate to step in if you get any more data, I’ll add it to the article.

 

One of my favorites are:

A million Res Nodes(If I Had a Million Dollars, Barenaked Ladies) ;

Days of NS(Twelve Days of Christmas) ;

Gorges Just Want To Have Fun(Girls Just Want To Have Fun, Cyndi Lauper).

 

Check out the full playlist and enjoy!

On a side-note, if you’re really nostalgic of NS1, you should totally subscribe to this Workshop mod made by Loki & McGlaspie (switching to NS1 main menu).

 

Coming out on NS2 recently, artists have also showed up and shared their creations through a more modern universe.

Xenocide Song” by Robby (Paradise, Coldplay)

Keep Medding” by Robby (Break Your Heart, Taio Cruz)

Whip” by Skyice

Can You Weld Me?” by Nights (Are You With Me, Lost Frequencies)

This is that kind of diversity in our community that makes it awesome. And you, which song do you like the most?

Eventually, if you personally performed a song about the NS universe, feel free to share.

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