Navigating the Menus
How to Play
Gameplay in a Normal/Team Arena
Gameplay in a Pickup Arena
Rocket Arena 2 Server
Welcome to Rocket Arena 2. You are about to play one of the most fun (and most addictive) mods ever created for Quake 2. Please take a moment, however, to read this entire file. It contains important info and answers many common questions.
Rocket Arena matches are played in "arenas." Each map may have one or more arenas in it. When you connect to a server, you need to either create or join a team, and then enter an arena (if the team isn't already in one). Once you are in the arena you will be put in line to fight. See below for more specific instructions.
Navigating the Menus
In many of these mods you will be required to bind keys to various game commands that were not included in the original Quake II. To bind a key to a command you will need to do the following:
The menus are controlled by the same keys you use to do your inventory. (Words in quotes are console commands, words in parentheses are the default key bindings)
"invprev" and "invnext" ([ and ]) go up and down on the menu
"invuse" (ENTER) selects an item
"inven" (TAB) toggles a menu on/off. If a menu does not show up when you think it should, try hitting TAB a few times. Also, if you are in an arena and want to leave, hit TAB to bring up the observer menu.
"invdrop" (', same key as ") decreases values on the Admin and Voting menus.
"invdrop" is also used on the Arena Selection menu to go directly into Observer Only mode.
How to Play
When you first join a server you will be asked to either join a team or create a new one. The number after the team name is the number of players on the team.
If you want to play by yourself, or start a team, then select 'Create Team'.
If another player has asked you to join their team you can select 'Join L33tPlayer's Team'.
If you would like to play in a pickup game (two teams, large size, clan arena style play) then join either pickup team red or blue. The number before the pickup team name is the arena it is in. There may be more than one pickup arena on a level, so make sure you are joining the correct one.
If you create your own team or join a team that is not already in an arena, you will then get a menu of arenas on the level. Using the menu, select which arena you want to play in. Hit ENTER (invuse) to get in line in that arena, or ' (invdrop) to enter the arena without getting in line. You can observe the matches and get into line at any time with the observer menu (hit TAB to bring it up).
Some arenas are set for more than 1 player per team. If you have less than the maximum number of players, you will be told so, but you can continue into the arena and people may join later.
You cannot enter arenas designed for pickup teams. You must join a pickup team to get in to them.
Gameplay in a Normal/Team Arena
Once in the arena waiting area, you will wait in line for your chance against the champion(s). The winning team stays on the battleground until it is defeated.
When you enter the arena, a 5 second countdown will begin. Note that there is a 10 second countdown if a vote is pending, to give you time to vote.
You will automatically be given whatever health/armor/weapons/ammo are configured for that arena. The members of the other team are given the same.
Now you fight.
When all members of one team are dead, the other team is declared the victor. If all members of both teams die, a tie is declared and the teams re-enter the arena.
You can optionally vote to turn on rounds in the arena. With rounds on matches are
played in a best X/Y fashion (2/3, 5/9, etc) with the winning team staying and the losing
team going to the back of the line.
Note that you can always tell your TEAM color by looking at the face on your status bar. If you don't see a face there, you aren't in a team arena.
Gameplay in a Pickup Arena
After joining a pickup team you will be placed in the arena as an observer. A match will probably already have started, and you can watch until the current round is over. Once the round is over you will be placed in the arena.
Kill everyone on the other team.
When you die you will be placed in observer mode and allowed to watch the rest of the round. Feel free to cheer for your teammates, but please do not give out health numbers!
Last team standing wins the round. Matches are usually played in matches of (up to) 5,9, or 11 rounds with a 15 second break in-between matches. Use the break to vote for changes or switch teams if they become uneven (to switch teams, leave the team you are on and join the other).
You may hit TAB to bring up the observer menu. From there you can leave the arena get in/out of line, or propose / vote on settings changes.
"Leave Arena": This will remove your entire team from the current arena and place you back at the arena selection menu. It is not an option for pickup teams.
"Leave Team": You will be removed from your team and placed at the team selection menu. If you are the only person on your team, it will be cleared.
"Change Arena Settings": You can propose changes to settings such as: health, armor, players per team, and weapon mix. Other settings (such as ammo amounts and self damage) are only configurable by the server op.
"Vote on Changes": When changes have been proposed you will be given notice and can come here to view/vote on the changes. Always remember to vote on your own proposal!
For example, say you want to play 2v2 in an arena that is set for 1v1. One player should join the arena and propose the changes (and vote for them of course). The changes will go through in about 30 seconds. He can then have a teammate join his team from the teams menu. Any other 2 person (or 1 person) team can now enter the arena. Please note that if you leave the arena, and it becomes empty, the settings are reset to the server default!
Hitting TAB again will remove the menu.
The FIRE key changes observer modes.
The JUMP key cycles players forwards in trackcam and eyecam mode.
The DUCK key cycles players backwards in trackcam and eyecam mode.
The viewing modes are:
Normal: For arenas with viewing areas, you are placed in the viewing area to watch the match.
FreeFlying: You may noclip freely throughout the level.
TrackCam: RA2 has an excellent trackcam that YOU control. Moving the view will let you fly around the target you are viewing.
EyeCam: This unique view lets you see EXACTLY what the player is seeing.
The default messagemode1 (T key, "say" at console) will only send messages to your arena. All spectators and players will hear them. If you are in the main waiting arena, it will be broadcast to the whole server. Arena messages do not play the "beep" because it can get annoying when playing. If you don't want to hear arena messages while playing you can set "msg <number>" at the console, where <number> is 2,3, or 4.
The default messagemode2 ("say_team" at console) will send messages to your teammates, but only if they are in the same state (playing or observing) as you (i.e. spectators can't send team messages to teammates that are playing, but two teammates playing can communicate this way).
"say_world <message>" at the console will send a message to the entire server. World messages are prefixed with a W: When replying to a world message, make sure you use say_world, or your intended recipient might not hear you (if they are in another arena). There is no way to bind say_world to a key, but typing text at the console (non-commands) will also send it to the world by default.
Spam protection is in effect on the servers. Do not send messages too fast or you will be kicked (5 messages in 2 seconds would be too fast).
Q: I get a "map not found" error when connecting to the server.
A: Either the server is not running with the "arena" directory set, or your files are not installed correctly. Quake 2 3.14 and above should set the game directory automatically.
Q: All the players have white boxes coming out of them.
A: You do not have the VWEP pak2.pak installed. Get it from the Rocket Arena 2 downloads page. Install it in your quake2\baseq2\ directory.
Q: The player's skins aren't showing up in pickup arenas, or I get a pic not found
A: The skins files either got overwritten, or were never installed in the first place. Try reinstalling by following the instructions below.
Q: Is it cheating to give out the other team's health numbers to my teammates?
A: Yes it is. So don't do it. We left in the ability for observers to talk to players, so please don't abuse it. It was left in so that observers can cheer for their teammates and encourage them, not so they can help their teammates cheat. Giving out health numbers ruins the suspense and strategy of the game. So just don't do it. You wouldn't like your health given out, so don't give out other peoples'. End of subject. This discussion is closed.
Q: Is using the BFG Cheating?
A: This is a much tougher question, and I have devoted a short essay to it. You can find it at: http://www.planetquake.com/servers/arena/bfg.html. However, the basic answer is: if the BFG is turned on, it is not cheating to use it. The BFG is off by default and can only be turned on by the server admin or by voting. Please don't annoy people by voting repeatedly to turn it on or off.
Q: Is the Rocket Arena 2 source code available?
A: Not at the moment. It may be released at a later date, but not in the foreseeable future. If you have a mod and are interested in learning how something was done in RA2 feel free to contact one of the authors and we will get back to you (time permitting). Bot authors interested in adding RA2 support to their bots highly encouraged to contact us for the required code. The menu source (although a slightly older version) has been released on the RA2 web page. The current version may be released if we can clean it up and pry it away from arena.
Q: How do I make a Rocket Arena 2 map?
A: We will post the RA2 map specs on the RA2 web page when they are ready for the public. We may also be accepting public maps, as we did with RA1, but please check the web page for details as they become available.
Q: The Player Setup screen in multiplayer options crashes Quake 2.
A: You probably have old files lying around from the beta test. Delete your \quake2\arena directory and reinstall only the release files.
Q: Where is the map: ra2rg1 (or, funkra2g, or ra2rg2b)?
A: All these maps are included in the current release with later versions and different names. Servers with those maps are running old versions and should not be used.
Authors: David 'crt' Wright <firstname.lastname@example.org> Mungo <email@example.com>
Web Page: http://www.planetquake.com/servers/arena
Discussion list: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Rocket Arena 2 map team did an amazing job on these levels. Feel free to e-mail
them with your questions/comments. Map specs will be posted on the RA2 page following this
release so that other map makers can start working on RA2 maps.
ra2map1 Funkadooda's Alpine Adventure (7 Arenas)
Arenas 1 - 5,6: Steve Fukuda <email@example.com>
Arena 6: Andrew 'BowZer' Bowser firstname.lastname@example.org
Arena 7: Christian Antkow email@example.com
Snow Sky: Jeff Garstecki - www.frag.com/deconstruct
Arena 1 - "Stadium Cargo Hold"
Arena 2 - "Alcatraz"
Arena 3 - "The Blue Max"
Arena 4 - "Funkadooda's Revenge 2"
Arena 5 - "Railgun Stadium"
Arena 6 - "Drop Zone"
Arena 7 - "The Warehouse"
ra2map2 Tesh's Revenge (5 Arenas)
Arenas 1 - 4: Ralph 'tesh' Gustavsen <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Arena 5: Tim Willits <email@example.com>
Arena 1 - "spongebath"
Arena 2 - "rocket jump this!"
Arena 3 - "edge of insanity"
Arena 4 - "the wicked empty base"
Arena 5 - "the outer base"
ra2map3 Soahc Complex (3 Arenas)
Ben Bjoralt (Scalt) firstname.lastname@example.org
Arena 1 - "DeathBox"
Arena 2 - "The Corridors"
Arena 3 - "Q2 Soahc"
ra2map4 Arenaholics Anonymous (10 Arenas)
Arenas 1 - 5: Mark Major email@example.com
Arenas 6 - 10: Tim van Hal Tim@inside3d.com
Marco van Schriek Marco@inside3d.com
Roel Tiemessen Roel@inside3d.com
AKA "The MarTim Team"
Arena 1 - "Stone Cold"
Arena 2 - "Monkies in the Middle"
Arena 3 - "The Cage"
Arena 4 - "Uneven"
Arena 5 - "House of Glass"
Arena 6 - "Heart and Soul"
Arena 7 - "The Lobbing Lobby"
Arena 8 - "Rail Runners"
Arena 9 - "Machine Room"
Arena 10 - "The Bridge"
ra2map5 An Assortment of Flavors (4 Arenas)
Mackey McCandlish (Avatar) firstname.lastname@example.org
Arena 1 - "Tek Towers"
Arena 2 - "McCandlish Base"
Arena 3 - "Sun Baked"
Arena 4 - "Only if it Rotates
ra2map6 Fragapalooza (8 Arenas)
Mark Major email@example.com
Snow2 Sky by Jeff Garstecki - www.frag.com/deconstruct
Arena 1 - "Courting Death"
Arena 2 - "Pillars"
Arena 3 - "A Room with a View
Arena 4 - "The Long Jump
Arena 5 - "That Not So Fresh Feeling"
Arena 6 - "Gibs on Ice"
Arena 7 - "Here and There"
Arena 8 - "An Auxiliary Death"
ra2map7 Palace of Brak (6 Arenas)
Ralph 'tesh' Gustavsen firstname.lastname@example.org
Arena 1 - "Planet Brak"
Arena 2 - "Bucket-O-Gibs"
Arena 3 - "Spin Cycle"
Arena 4 - "Frontdoor-Backside"
Arena 5 - "Zoraks Revenge"
Arena 6 - "A Good Place to Die"
ra2map8 Injury Terminal (3 Areanas)
Greg Barr email@example.com
Arena 1 - "Comm Tower"
Arena 2 - "Inferno Compound"
Arena 3 - "Ventilation Central"
Rocket Arena 2 Server
Administration / Mod setup
In Game Administration
Administration / Mod setup
There are several console variables which control how the mod functions. Most other options have been moved to the arena.cfg file.
"set logfile 2" will let RA2 create an STDLOG.LOG file in your Quake 2 directory that records all the info for the game. You can then parse this log with GibStats (www.planetquake.com/gibstats) to obtain ranking/stat information.
"set admincode 1234" is the code (up to 8 digits) that you set to allow in-game administration of the server.
"set netlog ripper.stanford.edu:21998" will send all logging information to that machine. See below for net logging information (please note that the new default port for the release version is 21998, not 21999 as it was in the first beta).
"set public 1" will allow the server to be displayed on the id list. You MUST set public 1 for your netlog stats to be accepted.
The arena.cfg file allows you to specify map options on a:
1. per server
2. per map
3. per arena basis
Information is stored in a hierarchical format. Priority goes in order to:
1. Values for the specific arena
2. Values for that map
3. Global values defined at the top of the arena.cfg file
4. Default values stored in the code.
Available Options are:
weapons: 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 0; where the number corresponds to the default Q2 binding (2 = shotgun, 0 = bfg)
playersperteam: <value>; //maximum number of players to allow on a team. Smaller teams can join, and players can join teams already in arenas.
rounds: <odd numbered value>;
max_teams: <value>; //to limit the teams in an arena. Automatically set to 2 for pickup arenas.
pickup: <1/0>; //enable / disable pickup teams for this arena (disabled by default)
Please take a look at the included arena.cfg for some examples.
If you settings are not being used, please make sure that:
1. you have a ":" (colon) separating the identifier and the value
2. you have a ";" (semi-colon) at the end each line
The default values if none are specified in the config are:
weapons : 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9;
armor : 200;
health : 100;
minping : 0;
maxping : 1000;
playersperteam : 1;
max_teams : 128;
shells : 100;
bullets : 200;
slugs : 50;
grenades : 50;
rockets : 50;
cells : 150;
fastswitch : 1;
armorprotect : 2;
healthprotect : 1;
if (it is a multi arena map)
pickup : 0;
rounds : 1;
else (it is a id / single arena map)
pickup : 1;
rounds : 9;
Rocket Arena 2 now supports Clan Arena style pickup teams. Simply set "pickup: 1;" for any arena/map you want to have pickup teams on. Two teams will appear on the main menu (arena # red/arena # blue), and players will be able to join one of the teams and instantly be put in the arena.
You should also set multiple rounds "rounds: 9;" or so, so that the matches last a bit longer. There is a 15 second waiting period between matches, so that players can switch teams if they want.
Rocket Arena 2 has network logging support. To enable this add: "set public 1" and "set netlog ripper.stanford.edu:21998" in your server.cfg file. This will send kill information to that machine for central collection and analysis. This system is not 100% reliable (about 1/1000 kills are lost in transit) but is STRICTLY FOR FUN, so if you're looking for more serious/accurate rankings, do them for your own server only.
Right now all I am doing with the netlog data is displaying the top 5 fraggers of the day on the top of the Rocket Arena page. Future uses may be considered. The comprehensive stats were discontinued because they fostered an environment of intense competition that made many people uncomfortable.
In Game Administration
To use the in game administration, just type /cmd admin <admincode> (e.g. /cmd admin 1234)
It will pop up a menu allowing you to select things like fraglimit, timelimit, and map. You can cycle through all the maps in the maploop: line in the arena.cfg file. Use invuse (ENTER) to increment a value and invdrop (') to decrease it.
Arena administration is done by typing: /cmd arenaadmin <admincode> <arena #> (e.g. /cmd arenaadmin 1234 1) This will give you a menu similar to the voting menu, but you can force the changes.