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Tactics FAQ

Last updated on 2010-04-09

Are soakfests unskilled by nature?

Not necessarily. Soakfests can be organized, and even though they are mostly free-for-alls, it can take a lot of skill to play well. It is even possible to create objective based soakfest games; games where a winner/loser can actually be determined. For this to work, the games should be split into rounds and the weaponry should be very unbalanced. (Think players with squirt guns vs. those with hoses) The teams alternate roles each round so each gets an even chance to each role. It is also possible to create objective soakfests that are not team based, such as infection/zombie style games.

Are tree houses effective?

Tree houses can be effective if well-supported. High ground always is an advantage; yet without ground troops the situation may be grim--it all depends on how well-implemented it is. A topic on the SoakerMedia forums discusses thing to great length.

Are trenches or bunkers effective?

Trenches and bunkers work well in the right places and at the right times. Should they be located uphill, they could easily be defended. Some, however, say that water gunners would be too entrenched to leave: a proper escape route should be considered. Overhead cover for trenches may be necessary.

Can a commander be a heavy gunner?

Conventional and long followed advice states they can not, but a commander can be a heavy gunner, and it can even be advantageous to do so. Many people who write against commanders wielding heavy guns are thinking about the loss of mobility and the fact that commanders need to be doing a lot of duties in real time. But often the best place that commanders can possibly be is at the front lines. There, you can direct maneuvers as events unfold and react to enemy movements more effectively. Two roles are not even enough. As an example, I am a co-commander of my team and am responsible for almost every position you could think of: scouting, heavy gunning, skirmishing, etc. I often use them all during a long war. Positions in general should be relative to user weaponry class and skill, not rigid assignments. Also positions should change based on the situation. Attacks are also often more successful if led by an experienced commander with a powerful weapon.

Can a portable base be built?

Yes, but it must be made from lightweight material to make it truly portable. Search around; something is bound to be available that may help.

Can a water fight be fought with only water balloons?


Do homemades hold their own? How well do homemades work in battle?

See response on the Homemades FAQ.

How can I plan and start a water fight?

The best way is often to attract friends and others and start casually. For a more serious effort, you need to find more serious people.

How can I recruit people for a water war?

Start with your friends.

How can I setup a trap?

Traps for the most part do not work; therefore we will not recommend any specific setups.

How can I transport troops and equipment?

If you have access to a car, it will be the easiest way to transport things, especially to a remote location. Bicycles can work well with racks though.

How do I build a base?

Find a good location, preferably uphill and capable of a quick getaway if needed. Build from there with what is available; even natural defenses like dirt and wood work wonders. If the water war is taking place in an urban or neighborhood type of area, places with hoses make for obvious bases.

How does a team win a water war?

The rules determine how a team wins. Teamwork, tactics, and speed increase a team's chances of winning.>

How important is teamwork on a team?

Teamwork is important for all teams. Know your team members well, as you can then work better and fight better.

How should I deal with prisoners or captives?

Treat them as well as you would treat a teammate, especially since many times they are in fact friends, just opponents in the current water fight. Most proper water wars do not have prisoners/captives so it is unlikely that you'll run into this situation.

I am outnumbered. How can I win?

Consult this article.

Should everyone use equally powerful guns in a water war?

This is a personal choice. Some people don't care if they get soaked left and right by better-armed people, while some do. Not everyone has access to similarly powered guns though and for most games, even distribution of water guns is needed to keep people from complaining. The exception is if the water war consists of two formally organized teams who use their own equipment, as opposed to a water war hosted like a party.

Also, it is possible to have some types of games that demand unbalanced weaponry. However, players' roles must be dynamic, as well as the blasters they are using.

Should I use forts or bases? How can I defend a base?

Use of forts or bases are personal choices. The easily bases to defend are uphill and have good water supplies. Some don't like them though because of their lack of mobility; but your game type may dictate use of a base. (i.e. capture the flag)

What game types are out there?

There are a near infinite number of possible game types to play. While Super Soaker Central currently does not have many resources on choosing game types, the forums may be a helpful place to start. For most players, soakfests and one hit kill/score variations suffice though it is up to individuals to draft specific rules for their needs.

However, there are much more possibilities than that. Capture the flag may be popular, but try a target assault game where each base has a target to soak. Even soakfest games can have objectives, such as a soakfest based infection/zombie/survival game. Be creative but think through your games thoroughly to see how they will work. First person shooter video games is a possible source of ideas for water war games but many of them must be heavily modified to work while others simply will not work at all.

What is the best hill defense?

Keep the high ground. Sometimes, outnumbered defense strategies are needed. Other factors such as water supply are also important to consider. Hills can be attacked in a variety of ways such as through flanking, withe water balloons, etc. so stay alert.

What is the best way to defend a base?

The best way to defend a base built it and position it well. With the proper defenses, it can be nearly impossible to take. For permanent structures, players should cover attacking points well and keep the weak points in mind.

What is the largest war you have participated in? How large do water wars get?

There have been many large wars, numbering up to a few hundred participants. However, virtually all large wars with over 30 participants are frantic soakfests (especially when numbers get to the hundreds) and are usually done by tradition.

What is the most effective tactic?

Generally, the most effective tactic is surprise: You have the upper hand if your opponent can never guess your next move. However, the best tactics to use vary in every situation and you will simply have to know what to do.

What rules do people have for refilling?

Many people playing in very informal games prohibit attacking players who are refilling. However, most players prefer not to impose these rules as they are not only full of loopholes to exploit, but also limit one of the most common tactics of water warfare; attacking the enemy when they're unable to fight back. It is up to players to be effective at refilling and to defend their refill stations. Also, more often than not, it is possible to attack while refilling regardless of the refill source. Most blasters can fire while filling, and the VHS or a similar improvised homemade hose attachment allows for the hose to shoot while refilling. Also, a player can refill a blaster with a water bottle, attack while doing so, and claim that the other person is cheating if he attacks back.

What rules should I use? What type of game should I play?

See the FAQ's above on ideas for rules. It is up to you and your group/friends to decide what rules best fit the situation. For example, an elimination game is no fun if there are 30 people playing. A game that takes place over a large battlefield (at least half a mile in length) cannot expect players to respawn in their bases every single time they're soaked. Use your discretion and create your rules appropriately and last but not least, experiment with them to see what works for you and what doesn't.

What should I do for training?

The best form of training is the real deal; have a water war. Many players get their "training experience" from their first wars. However, it also helps to be physically fit and to know how to use your water blasters effectively. Teamwork is also important. If you prefer to hold training sessions, invite a few people and practice by having duels and small team games.

What should I wear to a war? Is camo good?

Typically shorts or a swimsuit are all that are needed. Some prefer camo because they fight in heavily wooded areas and therefore benefit from the added stealth.

Where should I fight water battles?

Almost any outdoor area is good for water fights. Some prefer large, outdoor spaces; others can manage with much less space. The neighborhood is a good starting point if you have a friend who lives nearby and can help provide a base-to-base setup. The woods is a more common area since it generally provides more cover.

Which statistic is the most important during a battle?

Simply put, every factor you can get an advantage in is important during a war. Having range superiority on water blasters allows players to attack without being attacked. Physical ability also helps when players can run and dodge faster. Teams with more people or more experienced players can have an advantage. Positions, choice of battlefield, and many other factors come in play and are just as important. In the heat of battle, knowing what to do in a given situation is also important.

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