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Sep 13 2011

Inconsistent clan scene

Perhaps more than some I, Razerfox, have a unique perspective on why clans come and go. The making and breaking of teams and clans depends on many factors. There is however, one key factor that rises above all others. Let’s explore what this “x-factor” is and find out how successful clans manage to use this elusive element to their advantage.

Let’s cut to the chase. Yes, the following factors affect  the making or breaking of a clan: friendship between mates, performance issues, disrespectful behavior, poor leadership, irresponsibility, losing even winning! I’m sure you, dear reader, can think of a few more to add to the list.

In our local TF2 competitive community this constant change and lack of activity has always been a big problem but the number one problem lies with the clan leader.  Yes, I am talking about you, clan leader, the one that fails to set a goal for your team. When I talk about “goals” each team can have many different goals or maybe even just a few but the one over riding, all important, above-everything-else goal is this: improve as a team. Even if you are the best team you still have to keep up your game to stay ahead of the rest, if you are a mid-tier team surely you would like to improve to get to the top level and those at the bottom of the ladder in skill levels should also willing to try and build up their way up.

Brazen TF2 was a mighty team that rivals did not want to play. Skillbill, Scuba, anthem, Takbok, Turbz and Sentient were the winning team at the BOTC TF2 V1 2009.

This is a big problem in our local TF2 clan scene – our top teams reach a level where there is not much to do. When you become the best team the rest give up and that leaves you and your team playing against a less skilled team. This usually leads to a steamroll and is not fun for either of the teams. The lack of major tournaments for the game is also factor for these top teams losing interest as there is not much reward for the time invested in the game to remain at the top level and playing clannies and other community hosted competitions just does not cut it.

As example Brazen TF2 suffered from this when they had a dominant period beating the likes of Pantheon, MiNt , KAN and at a later stage Swift back in early 2009, when it seemed like TF2 was on the rise.

There were a lot of teams initially who wanted to play us but once we were dominating the top teams consistently they all eventually started to flake [fade away]. And the other teams back then weren’t going to offer us a challenge so we decided to call it quits.
~Skillbill (Brazen captain)

At the mid and low-tier end, the problem is usually down to one of inconsistency. These teams never get the chance to evolve. The leader of these teams has to take full responsibility by either not choosing the right players that can commit properly to the team; or the leader breaks up the team as soon as results are not good enough (as opposed to making a couple of roster changes) or perhaps they do not have enough patience to carry a team forward.

Leadership is getting players to believe in you. If you tell a teammate you’re ready to play as tough as you’re able to, you’d better go out there and do it. Players will see right through a phony. And they can tell when you’re not giving it all you’ve got.
~Larry Bird

We need teams of course but we also need stability and if these teams do not have a strong  leader that has the willing power to move forward and accomplish the goals they have planned for their team we will keep replaying the same old tired and worn out routine that has dogged TF2 for a long, long time.

This is why we must focus on a major goal that each and every team from all skill levels should work for. The one goal that requires unity in a community, the one that does not have a selfish minded purpose regardless if you are in the winning or losing team. This goal is to work for a healthy cycle of TF2 competitive play that is consistent, has long term future and keeps growing a competitive player base that can be recognized by the local event organizers to give us the chance to represent the game we play and show that TF2 can be as fun and as competitive as any other of the big titles played in SA gaming.

What do you think? I would like to get some feedback from the community, so let me know in the comments what you think about it and what we can do to improve the clan scene.

24 comments

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  1. FiSH

    Need good leaders and commited players :) Nice article Razer.
    Players also need to grow a pair, if their team gets rolled…get better, try again. Too much emo.

    1. Russ

      How about the ‘top teams’ also grow a pair and stick around when things get ‘boring’?

      1. Fair

        Mine’s been growing a lot bro, still not top :(

  2. Lola

    “the one over riding, all important, above-everything-else goal is this: improve as a team”

    I agree with the Fox, and in order to do this you firstly need a good captain.
    Good article Fox.

  3. Deacan

    Pretty much hit the nail on the head… I widh teams would stay together and work on things. You can only get better by putting in the time and effort together. Otherwise the cycle just carries on coz you expect you’ll become this leet team over night coz you joined a new team.

    But nice read… lets stay together and work at it 😛

  4. KomboKitten

    Good read, makes sense. *Looks at Russ…* hahah

  5. Razerfox

    Glad people like it! I’ll be keeping up this kind of articles to at least once a week.

    But yeh we need to improve on this matter people.

  6. Lola

    We would like to know HOW tf2csa can help the clan leaders, what do you need? Is there specific topics you want us to write about, demos on the site, more couching etc.

    1. Razerfox

      couching? 😛

      1. Russ

        Its this new extreme sport.
        Couching > Planking > Owling.

  7. Silencer

    A really well written article and a great read, Razer. I rate you should give up killing chickens and write a book… But a naughty book 😉

  8. Razerfox

    :( yoo da chickens make moneyz boet

  9. Lola

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=yKIiUsbOO24

    couching is the new safe word for…

  10. biltong

    Another big problem I think is that less skilled teams that have just started out don’t get much chance with the community the way it is. In my experience they end up playing some of the best of the best (it’s not only a TF2 problem) and that discourages them from playing the game. We need lots of small teams, so that there’s a fair chance for all.

    I hope that made sense.

    1. Fair

      Makes sense.

      But the players starting out should play vs lower div players and ask the skilled players for advice. I’m pretty sure a lot will help.

    2. Lola

      We have div 2 and 3 teams, they dont have to play vs the best. With the comps we run we try to at least make 2 divisions in order to avoid this.

  11. Arn3

    i kinda feel very guilty now….my team (“toxic”) broke up in 2009 due to the issues mentioned above. We did not win, we improved but never seemed to improve enough to face the giants…..tempers got high and commitment got low….one thing led to another and yeah….

    so my advice to future and current captains of teams :
    – the friendship bond between you and your players is more important than any practice, fail, fight, loss etc. So keep that alive
    – have respect and respect will be given to you
    – even as a leader sometimes you have to follow
    – shed light when there seems to be only darkness
    – crack a joke or two every now and then about failed attempts…..keeps the spirit high
    – be more committed, lead by example,
    – get organized, email, cellphone, irc etc to chat, organize games etc.
    – as a leader, face the music, criticism and negativity in the clan, and be able to turn that around.

    “A great leader’s courage to fulfill his vision comes from passion, not position.” – John Maxwell

    1. Razerfox

      Dont feel guilty mate it has happened to everyone :)

      Great comment!

  12. Arn3

    i hope my comment meant something to someone. cool

    1. Fair

      BRING TOXIC BACK !!!!

      1. Arn3

        I am with pcz now….really happy! we are really dedicated and committed. pcz is my toxic now… :)

        1. Zephon

          WWAAAAGGGHH!!!! PEEEESSSEEEEEZZZZEEEEEE!!!!

          great article! one thing that has me surprised, on teh pubs there are alot of these “random clans”…(JaH comes to mind)…we need to get them to join our tourneys 😀 (unless its a clan for a diff game…but there sure are alot of them playing on the same server at the same time often enough)…

  13. Lola

    Then invite them Zephon

  14. Peng

    PCZ! WOOT

    my fingers smell like weed.

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