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This is without doubt one of the most important maneuvers in Daikatana. Strafe Jumping allows a player to increase velocity to cover a greater area, quicker. When in battle, the most important key besides aim and dodging is control of the map or owning. Being in control pretty much guarantees victory but staying in control is another topic. Control of the map means obtaining resources such as armor, power ups, health and weapons before anyone else can get them. A true controller will not allow other players to get these valuables on any given map. The true controller is a HOG, he does not give two shits about sharing with others, he will, at any cost (without cheating or mining in a "no armor" game) steal all resources on the map. So how do you get to these goodies before anyone else does? Well, I'll cover control tactics later but for now we'll deal with just getting back and forth to and from resources. The fastest man wins this type of war. Therefore, you need to be fastest to win and that is where the Strafe Jump comes into play.
The Jump Itself
The Strafe Jump is a simple running jump with a twist (literally). You can straf using your left side and your right side but I'll use the LEFT side for the example. To execute this move you need only run into any direction (let's say forward) and while running... jump (keeping the forward key depressed)... and in while in the air, use the mouse to turn yourself left about 45 to 90 degrees and press the left key, while in the air only, along with forwards for added velocity. So while in the air only, you push the left or right key to match the side you chose to angle your mouse towards. Once you land, let go of the LEFT or RIGHT key for an instant (holding forward always) until you jump again and repeat using the mouse to keep yourself from making a full circle but keeping your body angled sideways from the direction your moving into.
You can look up and down while in a strafe jump, but don't press the left or right key on the opposing side of the direction you chose to look towards, since this will, for the most part, slow your strafe speed down for that one particular strafe jump. Once you land, you must immediately jump and repeat (you don't have to align straight when executing multiple strafe jumps, you can keep your body sideways) to add extra velocity EVEN MORE than the 1st time. Again keeping in mind that you need to constantly observe your surroundings. Many players will count on sheer velocity and not observe their surroundings well. This can be effective as well since they are concentrating more on their speed then shooting (you'll gain maximum velocity probably in 2 jumps) and you will make yourslef a hard target at that speed. Of course roof campers (snipers) can lead you off with a rocket and end it all (we'll discuss leading off elsewhere) so you need to be unpredicable with your movement patterns. My personal preference is to strafe jump while observing, especially in the streets for the exact reason I just mentioned. Looking on an upward angle will give you the most viewing area and you can see all the roof tope edges for players camping all while still getting your groove on!
So, Strafe Jumping will make you go REAL fast. In fact, you may get accused of cheating with timescale (console command). It's easy for a seasoned player to tell the difference between skill and cheats. With the cheat timescale, players usually just run, with the strafe jump you can hear the players jumping noise every 0.8secs or so. In addition to that, elite players know the look of strafe jumping as opposed to timescaling.
Flying Around (Air Strafing)
The second type of Straf Jump is one that doesn't require you to jump at all. Flying in the air and turning sideways will have the same effect. Basically when the players body is cutting thought he air sideways, they are more streamlined and faster as opposed to hitting the air with your chest breaking the wind (which slows you down). Using the left or right key during flight will also, like on the ground, improve performance.
Jumping from windows and Air Strafing will allow for more options and places to land. For example, you can jump and Air Straf from the power tower lower window to the 3rd or 4th level of the attack tower and from the power towner high window to the vitality building roof. Of course when jumping in the air, strafing AND firing a rocket downwards will be most effective, it is not always the wisest choice since the noise will give your position away to tyour opponent. On the other hand, in a Free For All (FFA) game, you may get a free frag:).
Strafe Jump and Strafe Key Maneuver
A third type of Strafe Jump is one that you combine turning sideways in the air and using the strafe button immediately after you get airborne by dragging your mouse the opposite way you turned (while holding down the strafe button....usually the right mouse button) Confused yet? Don't be. The original term strafe is used in lieu of dodging side to side or sidestepping. Executing the strafe jump and using your strafe button while in the air could give you that little extra you need to make your target in case you didn't get the performance out of your original strafe jump. This move is used for single jumps, usually to get to a ledge. This type is rarely used while on the ground since for the most part is not needed. The single strafe jump will usually do the job like get the soulheart or 200 Armor in Storm Sector 7. Using this type of strafe jump after a rocket jump can have some very interesting effects while your in the air (I won't talk about this later :).
Pratice Makes Perfect
Pratice makes perfect we all know. This strafe jumping will not happen overnight. It will take time for you to feel the motions of what I am talking of and the more you train, the more this primer will make sense to you. Soon you will have perfected it and you will be on your way to owning resources and out running your opponents. The elite player knows the importance of constant strafe jumping. You just don't do it in the streets or in open areas. Your goal is to make every single move ingame a strafe jump. Being able to do this will shave time off your routes.
There are many places in Daikatana maps where elite strafe jump that most wouldn't think of. You don't run down stairs, you jump them with one fluent smooth strafe and don't even need to touch them. Again it's all about doing tasks as fast as they can be possibly done.
I know, I know.... You've heard that this is not possible to strafe up a flight of stairs. I'm here to tell you otherwise :) This move is not easy I must admit and for anyone performing this task be prepared to get frustrated. The move does not allow you to jump up every flight entirely and perfectly as if you where comming down but on long flights of stairs you can strafe about 1/2 way up and if you land exactly where you need to, you can strafe jump quickly again to finish the rest. The trick here is landing on the stairs at the very edge of the stair, landing too far into the stair and trying to jump again will cause you to bang your foot on the next step without clearing it. So again you need to land right at the leading edge of the stair and jump again instantly. If you can only shave off .2 seconds by doing this, your on your way! During the course of your route you may be able to shave off 1 second and this is what gives you the upper hand advantage. This 1 second can be the difference between you getting the 200 armor or your opponent stealing it.
Calculating Your Strafe Jumps
Only time will bring these jedi skills to you. When you straf jump around, it's easy to go too fast and overshoot your entrance or window. You need to remember how far of a distance your strafe jump will produce and then calculate how man are needed to cross certain areas like a room, stairs, roof, street section and smoothly glide though a doorway or window. Most players will strafe jump and bang into walls but after time you will notice that you can make your strafs effeceint so that no time is wasted missing your desired path. It's nice when you come outside in the open and quickly strafe jump 2x and fly into a doorway smoothly. The opponent is like.. DAMN! Can't even get a lock onto your position but missing the doorway and banging intot he wall will not only take off health (when falling damage is on) but will give your enemy a long time to zero in on you and bounce you out of there with a rocket.
Strafe Jumping Past Doorways and Windows
Hitting your target without your enemy knowing where it came from is key to being elite. When you know a target has entered a room you can follow him but don't engauge yet. He's inside a room where the entrace has room on both sides for you to straf jump... fly past the doorway while shooting a rocket into the room... and flying by without you becoming a target at all. It's called the "element of surprise" and it's the best advantage to war. The hard part though is hitting something at that split second you pass the doorway. Your time to shoot is very limited and you must be a good aim otherwise you will smack that rocket up side the frame and the splash will hurt or kill you making you look like a damn newbie :) You need to pratice this move with windows and other openings so that you can shoot quickly and accurately and get good at FOCUSING for that split second as you pass the opening. Once your target has been hit, then you rush in for the close quarters combat.
Rocket Jump For Short Cuts
If your opponent is headed for the 200 armor in the storage room on Gibbler on the Roof map and he takes to the streets from the vitality area, you can rocket jump over the vitality building and meet up with him to frag his ass. This can be used in many areas in all maps to create short cuts that would take longer with even strafe jumping.
Rocket Strafe Jump
This is the move of champions. This is the one that puts you with the best. By strafe jumping and rocket jumping right after you land, you can clear maps with one bound :) The move is : strafe jump forward (or any direction for pros) and as you land... immediately rocket jump and feel the force. To gain full potential, two strafe jumps are needed. The ultimate is 2 quick strafe jumps and boom.....the rocket jump and goodbye charlie, your launched. This takes much practice to make it become effective in battle.
In addition to this (yes theres even more :), you should turn your body sideways in mid-air and push forward and left on the keypad (if you turned left) at the same time to maximize distance and to increase velocity. There are some interesting combinations with the strafe key while in air that will make you do some weird things. Learning this rocket strafe jump and angling your body properly in mid-air flight will make you a flying wizard. Flying wizards are the owners of large maps.
There many more tactics and techniques with strafe jumps. This is an excellent primer for beginners. The rest of the stuff is thought to CLaN DJ members only :) Good luck and DAMMIT.... pratice!
Author: DJ CROWZNEST (AKA. KAMAKAZI)
Founder of CLaN DJ
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