Base security – a debate
by Carson "Squeegie" Jenkins
Base security is the one thing that must be treated like an unstable nuclear reactor. If it is not watched around the clock, disaster will inevitably strike. The minute you let your guard down, you will be infiltrated. Depending on the rules of the scenario, base security may need to be run as strict as possible. We will try and give a rundown of the way security is handled at scenario games, from both sides of the coin. Understanding the why’s of situations may help you and your team get your missions and without compromising the security of your side, as well as save some General’s from mass defectors.
Why security is needed:
Simply put, to win. Anything and everything that goes on that could gain points for a team always starts at the base. Without the base teams don’t get missions, points aren’t gained, tactical advantages are lost. It is the brain of the operation. By cutting off the head, you disable the body. Another reason the base is such a prime target is that it’s an easy target. Lets say you get 100 points for running a mission that may take a team of 10 to 15 an hour and a half to complete. That team is going to lose players, paint and still may not succeed. You can send 1 player to a base with a bomb and get 50 points for a General assassination as well as 50 points for destroying the base. Not to mention the time gained from the enemy side not being able to run missions. If the player doesn’t succeed, you are only out one player instead of an entire team. It’s simple economics. So with that in mind, lets look at one of the more scrutinized types of security and why they operate the way that they do.
I first heard this term used in the Warpig’s RecTalk forum. It described the type of security that is so tight that no one got near the base without 15 checkpoints and threats of point blank “executions”. Having played most of my scenario games with the same formats and rule structures, this seemed appropriate and many times necessary. I myself have been base security for several games where no one was allowed within 20 feet of the base walls unless they were on my team or had been cleared personally by the General himself. Many arguments occurred and complaints were voiced about teams not being able to get missions. The instant that we slacked security to keep the peace, a suicide bomber who walked in with a known team blew up the base. That was unacceptable. So security went back up to zero tolerance levels. It is a delicate balance, but with the ease and lure of an easy 100 points it is necessary evil. Needless to say that the base had remained intact for the remainder of the game.
So, what was all the static for? Teams were angry because they felt that they had a right to be in the base. Most were upset because they felt they were being accused of treason. Others didn’t understand that the reason that we check ID badges 4 or 5 times is that with over 100 player in one area at one time, it has to be done that way to ensure that a sneaker doesn’t casually wander in with a game lethal device. I have walked right through the main gate of bases before as another players card was being checked at the gate. Once you are in you just act casual and blend in with the other players, striking when the time is right. When its only your team inside the perimeter, it makes it much easier to keep focused on who is a potential threat and who is not. Several checkpoints increase your odds of weeding out infiltrators. Understanding that your ID card is going to be checked repeatedly, and that it is for the greater good, will help speed up the passing of info to your superiors. Complaints and gripes about “ They already checked me at the gate and 3 times down the road” will only raise suspicion and will probably result in an unfortunate elimination.
So how can the stress of Base Nazi mentality be alleviated? Unfortunately the only ones that can really make a difference are the scenario promoters. The rule structure and points table must be adjusted to take less emphasis off the value of base destruction and General assassinations. The General wants to win. The team in charge of security wants to make MVT. This can’t happen if they are always in the dead zone. Some promoters have already taken steps to adjust the game play to keep the bases open to the public. Special role player assassins can only take out Generals. Bases can only be blown up if they are taken by force or by spies and other specialty role players. This keeps to the attention off of the bases and on the missions themselves where the true game lies. Although a new concept, it has been successful in the handful of games that have implemented the new ruling. Hopefully other promoters will adopt similar standards, thus making the need for such stringent security measures non-existent.