If you're looking for a bigger challenge, you should consider getting into the higher level PUGs. These PUGs channels are public and anyone can join -- however, there are some barriers to entry that prevent many new players from joining in. The first barrier is setting up IRC.What is IRC?
IRC stands for Internet Relay Chat. These are basically internet chat rooms -- the kind that your parents used to warn you about when they said to watch out for strangers on the internet. These IRC channels are primitive but effective tools for arranging PUGs. All of the best North American players hang out in these PUG channels, and you should get familiar with these channels if you want to move up the ranks.Step 1: Download an IRC client.
There are a number of IRC clients that you can use to access the PUG channels, much like how you use different internet browsers to surf the web. There are also web-clients that you can use so that you don't have to install any software on your computer. I'm going to focus today on accessing the IRC channels using mIRC. If you're looking for an alternative IRC setup guide, check out Shwan's guide here: http://teamfortress.tv/forum/thread/1291
Start by going to http://www.mirc.com
and downloading the client.
Follow the installation process. Note that although you're using an MIRC trial account, you can continue using the trial even after your trial period has ended; in other words you should never have to pay for this client.Step 2: Register for a GeeksIRC/QuakeNet account.
OK so you downloaded the client, but there are thousands of servers that you can join. The North American TF2 PUG systems currently operate on two servers: GeeksIRC[www.geeksirc.net]
. The European PUG systems operate exclusively on QuakeNet. Start by registering for an account on the server of your choice.Step 3: Join the Server that you want.
Go to File > New Window. Then File > Select Server. Choose the server from the list of servers -- if it's in a folder, choose a server within the folder. If you're connecting to GeeksIRC, you'll have to do this process manually by clicking "Add" then inputting IRC address irc.geeksirc.net with port 6667.
Once you have connected to the server, you need to use your login information that you've just created in order to log in to your server account. The instructions differ for each server, and you should reference the appropriate guide listed below:GeeksIRC Account Registration Page[geeksirc.net]How to Register an Account with QuakeNet[www.quakenet.org]Step 4: Join the channel(s) that you want.
Go to Favorites > Add to Favorites. Under channel you list the channel name. Check the box "Join on Connect" which will automatically join you into the channel when you start-up your IRC client next time. Under "Networks", make sure that it joins into the correct server; this applies mostly to people who are joined into multiple servers at once. Notable channels include: