This page describes TeamSwitch, a program designed to make it easier to use TeamSpeak while playing America's Army Operations.


2005 January 4th: New version 0.96 available.

The problem

America's Army Operations (AAO for short) encourages team work, but the means present within the game to communicate between players are not convenient to use. Players must use complex combinations of key presses to send predefined messages to other players (commo messages) or type short sentences with the keyboard. Needless to say, this is hard to do when under fire. A solution to this problem is to use separate voice-chat software, such as TeamSpeak (TS, in short)

This solution could be more convenient to use. Players must use channels corresponding to their team in the game. When they move to another team, which can happen automatically when the AAO server balances teams, players must manually move to the right channel in TS. Moreover, ghosting is made possible. Ghosting consists of dead players communicating with live players to give information about ennemies. This is considered to be cheating, and accusations of ghosting are easily thrown when a group of players performs surprisingly well.

The solution

TeamSwitch addresses some of these issues, though not perfectly. It automatically moves players to a special channel, named GHOSTS, when it detects their death. It also moves them to the channel matching their team every time a new round starts. It does not prevent ghosting, but it removes the temptation. Dead players usually like to comment what's happening in the game. If they do so using the same channels as the live players, they are ghosting, even if they did not intend to cheat in the first place.

How it works

TeamSwitch is a fairly simple Perl script that queries an AAO server at regular intervals to know what players are alive, and in what teams. When it detects a change, it connects to a TS server to move players to the right channels. The AAO server, the TS server an TeamSwitch need not run on the same computer.

Using TeamSwitch

TeamSwitch is available for free under the BSD license, which allows you to distribute and modify TeamSwitch as you wish. The requirements for running this software are the following:
Download TeamSwitch here.

Last words

You are welcome to make suggestions, criticize or tell me how wonderful TeamSpeak is by sending a mail to jdeneux AT this domain.

That's all folks. Have fun.
Johann "JohDex" Deneux