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Party & Squad Leadership

Part 1: Squad Leadership

Before parties can properly focus on learning/developing take-back strategies, you need squad leaders capable of directing the two other players on their squad. Even if everyone knows the system, you need people capable of making the call to keep the squad focused.

Think of the party as a unit broken down into ranks. One of your squad leaders is going to be a captain. The other three squad leaders are sergeants. Everyone else is a private.

Squad Leader Responsibilities

Calling Squad Priorities

Within the squad, Squad leaders will need to call out changing priorities for their squad as the game unfolds. Typically, this will happen after a base change, boss kills, or a squad wipe. The system tells people WHAT they should be doing. It’s the squad leader’s duty to tell them WHERE to do it.

Calling Approaches and Takedown Strategies

The squad leader should also call how to make approaches when the entire team is in transition (especially important for Assault and Backup). The leader should also call out how the squad should take down a priority threat, such as an enemy vehicle or power weapon wielder (especially important for Containment and Defense). The system tells people WHAT they should be killing. It’s the squad leader’s duty to tell them HOW to do it.

Directing Spawns

It’s very easy for players to get caught up in their own experience, and so the squad leader must make sure their squad members spawn effectively. Squad leaders have to make sure their people spawn at the base where they will have the best chance surviving to be effective or where they’re most needed. This is most important for the Backup squad.

Calling for REQs

Knowing which REQs to spawn and when is one of the core skills of Warzone. Sometimes squad members will preemptively spawn the weapon or vehicle needed for the job at hand, but other times they are worried about possibly losing them or failing and won’t spawn them in a timely fashion. Assault squad deals with this the most, and every squad leader should ensure that their members use their REQs effectively and timely.

Maintaining Useful, Positive Communication

The squad leader has to provide regular positive communication for their squad. “Good play,” “nice save,” “thanks,” are all forms of effective communication that make the squad members recognize that not only are they part of a team, someone else is actively paying attention to them and working with them. It makes every other part of the job easier when your squad members feel like you’re paying attention to them and noticing when they’re doing things well.

Coordinating with Other Squad Leaders

It’s important for the squad leader to keep their members focused on their squad-centric tasks, because they must also stay in tune with the goings-on around the map. B, C, and D squad leaders have to pay particular attention to what the Assault team is focusing, because it has the potential to disrupt the map. Squad leaders must stay apprised of global orders from the team captain so that they can properly direct their squad members.

Part 2: Party Leadership

Once the squads achieve effective leadership and can function smoothly as entities, someone must direct the squads and manage the party. Beyond calling strategic moves out, the party leader serves more as a mediator within the party to keep players on an even keel.

Party Leader Tips

Manage Party Chatter

Warzone parties allow for twelve-player teams, a Halo first. With that large of a party comes a lot of excess chatter. In a given party, there will be at least two, upwards to four conversations going concurrently. In lobby, it is important to ensure that important questions find answers before the team begins searching and to establish a healthy atmosphere. The party leader must maintain a steady presence as the voice the party should respect.

Encourage Positivity

Put frankly: shut down shit-talk. Good-natured teasing always turns into nagging antagonism. Two or more players going tit-for-tat becomes stressing, awkward, and irritating for the rest of the party. The party leader must create a positive atmosphere, and especially uplift squad leaders that have been trying to keep their other two players uplifted.

Rally the Team

The party leader must sense when a player is close to tilting and either get them to mute themselves, or redirect their frustration into something positive. When one player tilts, they begin to monologue their negative experience and vent their frustration into the party chat, creating disruptive, useless noise. Whenever a player or squad makes a strong play, follow-through on that play and rally the other squads to pounce on the advantage (such as the Assault team taking the opposing armory; have the other squads push for mid or move for core attack).

Establish Consequence

Despite the efforts of squad and party leaders, sometimes players will become too disruptive or uncooperative to positively contribute to the party. After issuing two warnings to a disruptive player, boot that player from the lobby and party on their third offense. Keep them out of the party for either three games or one hour of play. The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one. A single player's need to rage does not supersede the needs of the other players to have a positive gaming experience.

Final Thoughts

As parties assemble, natural squad leaders will form, and formal ones will be assigned. The squad leader must ensure that they give simple, direct orders. Complex, multi-step orders are hard to execute. Keeping your internal squad chatter effective will enable that squad to perform effectively, giving other squads an opportunity to rally. Each squad will only be as effective as its squad leader.

Effective squad leadership breeds successful party leadership. Working squads are viable units for the party leader to direct at different threats and objectives in game.