A HTML version of this note is available at: http://xahlee.org/sl/gor_fighting.html
Having a faster screen update is one of the most important aspect in winning a fight.
To find out what is your screen update rate (called Frames Per Second (FPS)), press 【Ctrl+⇧ Shift+1】. Below 10 is considered low. The number also depends on how busy is a sim. If your your enemy's FPS is 10 more than you, you are most likely to lose in one-on-one dual, regardless your shooting skill.
Besides getting a new computer with cutting edge graphics card and fast internet connection, here are some things you can do that can increase your FPS by 5 to 10.
If your FPS is 20 or more, skip this section.
• Reduce your draw distance to 64. This is under Preference 【Ctrl+p】, Graphics tab. If you are shooting from long distance, set it to 100. (most non-free bows can actually shoot across 250 meters when set on long range)
• Reduce your Grapics Detail. Go to Preference, Graphics tab, then drag the slider to left.
• Increase Network bandwidth. Go to Preference, Network tab. Increase it to 600 if you have a fast internet connection. (the optimal setting depends on the ratio of “internet speed”/“CPU speed”.)
• Turn off Flexible Objects. Turn on Advanced menu 【Ctrl+Alt+d】, then go to 〖Advanced ▸ Rendering ▸ Features〗. Turn off Flexible Objects 【Ctrl+Alt+F9】. You need to do it for each time you log in.
• Turn off Animated Texture. This is under menu 〖Advanced ▸ Rendering ▸ Animate Textures〗. You need to do it for each time you log in.
• Turn Off unnecessary rendering. Go to menu 〖Advanced ▸ Rendering ▸ Types〗, and turn off Tree, Grass, Clouds, Bump. You need to do it for each time you log in.
If your FPS is 20 or more, skip this section.
• Turn off streaming video, streaming music. This is under Preference, Audio ＆ Video tap.
• Turn off Voice Chat. Even if you are not using voice chat, having the feature on sucks your CPU because it runs a background process. To turn Voice Chat feature off, go to Preference, Voice Chat tab.
• Turn off other applications. Close your web browser, your PhotoShop, your Microsoft Word, your music player.
• AIM AT FEET. When you aim, aim at the feet of your foe. This is because, due to the pecularity of SL's physics engine, shooting upper body does not always register. Also, for most bows and meters, few meters on the ground around the feet will register. (called splash area)
• AIM AHEAD. When you aim at a moving target, shoot in front of the direction the enemy is running.
• RUN. Keep yourself constantly running, and change directions. (To run, use the menu 〖World ▸ Always run〗. 【Ctrl+r】)
• Use your mini-map. The mini-map is very useful, especially in one-on-one dog-fight when you lost sight of your foe. The mini-map will also help you find the action areas in big battle. You can zoom in and out your mini-map by scrolling your mouse wheel on it. (or, right click)
• Practice. Practice with your sisters in spar sessions. Usually gor sims have a arena. Also, meters also have a arena mode (usually invoked by clicking the HUD or type 「/1meter arena」). You can experiment with bows, aiming, shooting distances, running strategy, etc with your sisters.
The MOST important thing in group battle, is not about bow skills, but a great leadership and coherent communication. However, in most Second Life gor situation, members of a group are often too diverse, some are newbies, some don't mind being captured, and often players are not in any way trained, leaders are not absolute and not all listens to, and group communication is sporadic at best. In any case, the following are some tips for individuals for group battle.
• Move together. You must move together as a group. Do not stand next to each other, nor spread far out. Always keep about 5 to 10 meters distance from the group. When attacking a castle, wait for your teammate to catch up. Do not spearhead into a enemy group by yourself. If you went into enemy camp or castle, you'll be captured in a minute and your sisters can not get in or arrive to join the fight.
• Concentrate your fire power. This is a most important principle in group fight. Suppose 3 Panthers are fighting 3 Mercenaries and both group got equal skills. The group who coordinate their attacks on one foe at a time, will win the battle. This means, in a battle involving more than 2 persons per team, try to shoot the one who's being shot at already.
• Do not delay. Spring into action the moment you hear a bow string. If you wait to finish your chat or whatever, your sisters will be shot down one by one. By the time you join the battle, you are outnumbered and destined to be captured.
• When attacking, focus on one enemy until he's down. Do not switch target without a good reason.
• When in a group battle, try to keep a distance from your foe. This way, your sisters can shoot him and not hit you by accident.
• When being shot by a strong bow, run into your group of teammates so as to confuse his target. (keep firing at him while you do this)
• Aid your team mates. When you are not immediately being shot at, go to aid your fallen sisters from the capture ball. You must do this instead of going on to seek enemy.
• When you are not immediately under threat, Role Play to bind enemy that has fallen. This way, he won't be able to get up, run off and shoot again when the capture ball times out.
• When your health is low or you've been just aided, try to run to some safe place for your health to recover some. If you are defending a camp, hide behind a bulwalk for your health to recover. This is important. Do not think “O, one more shot”.
• The group leader should lead the sisters to exit the sim as soon as the raid or rescue is done. Any delay will beget more enemies. (and, almost always, big fights or long lasting fights will involve ugly arguments)
• F-KEY TO DRAW BOW. You can setup a gesture so that pressing F7 will draw bow and Shift-F7 will sheath bow. Similarly for other weapons. To do this, open your inventory window, use the menu 〖Create ▸ New Gesture〗. Then, double click to open your newly created gesture (named New Gesture). Type 「db」 in the Trigger box, and type 「draw bow」 or 「/1 draw bow」 in the “Replace with” box. (This means, when you type 「db」 in chat, your bow will be drawn.) Remove things in the Steps box, and Click the Active checkbox, and press Save button. Usually a weapon comes with this gesture.
• TURN OFF TREES. Turn off trees (〖Advanced ▸ Rendering ▸ Types〗 【Ctrl+Alt+⇧ Shift+3】). Also turn off grass, cloud. These are useless.
• TURN OFF BUILDINGS. You can turn off the rendering of buildings, so that you can easily see who's around. (Press 【Ctrl+Alt+⇧ Shift+9】. This is under the menu 〖Advanced ▸ Rendering ▸ Types〗) This is extremely useful to see who's around, or finding who's shooting you from where. This will also increase your FPS by 5 or more. Especially useful if your computer is slow or in busy sim. The disadvantage is that you won't see buildings, bridges, etc, so when fighting inside a building, you'll bump into walls. But you fight in this mode inside buildings by always following the exact path of your foe or friend.
• TURN ON TRANSPARANCY. You can see most invisible traps by turning on transparency. (〖View ▸ Highlight Transparent〗 【Ctrl+Alt+t】) However, don't leave this on because it slows your FPS.
• NAVIGATE CAMERA. Learn to master the skill of camera navigation. With good skills and sl knowledge, even when you are standing on dock, you can see EVERY PART of the sim, even inside buildings or deep tunnels. For a tutorial on cam navigation, see: Navigate Camera in Second Life 〔 http://xahlee.org/sl/build_view.html 〕. To disable camera distance Constraints, use the menu 〖Advanced ▸ Disable Camera Constraints〗.
• Misc. There are several other general SL tips that can help you in your Gor life. For example, how to find a location given a sim's name, how to be invisible, how to reduce lag, how to know who's around, how to pass thru walls, etc. See Second Life's Player's Frequently Asked Questions 〔 http://xahlee.org/sl/q.html 〕.
• KNOW THE TERRAIN. If you are not familiar with a sim, you are at a great disadvantage. Try to visit the sim at night or in peace time. (as Observer, Free Woman, or alts, or after midnight) Find out the entrances, exits, traps, locations of camps/fortresses.
• Master your keyboard shortcuts. For example, i use the following all the time.
For a full list, see: Second Life Keyboard Shortcuts Cheatsheet.
For a alternative style covering the art of fighting in Second Life, see this excellent article: Art of War - MLT Style by Drakona Lewellen. It is written by someone who was in military.