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Attack and Defend
Name: Attack and Defend
Progenitor: Deathmatch
Mode: PvP Teamplay
Players: 2-8

Attack and Defend is a team-based gamemode removed from Battlezone during its development. Its one map, Capture the Flag, remains present in a relatively functional state.[1]


Attack and Defend maps have two teams, each of which is given a number of piles of Supply Crates to defend. The game works in nine-minute rounds; the teams are given nine minutes to destroy the opponents' supply crates while protecting their own. If one team is successful in destroying all of the enemy supply crates, they are intended to be rewarded with a point - or, once the round timer reaches zero, the players are returned to their starting points and the crates respawn.[2]

The team points feature was never implemented, and as a result scoring in play is exactly the same as Deathmatch (and players are free to ally or unally as they please).


At some point towards the end of development, the Battlezone developers realised Attack and Defend was too broken to repair. Teams didn't work correctly, and the game would crash if players attempted to leave their tanks.[3] Since there was only one Attack and Defend map implemented at the time, the developer responsible chose to remove it from play to save themselves the work of removing the gamemode's code from the engine; as a result the map's files and the gamemode's programming remain in Battlezone to this day. Most of the team believed the gamemode completely removed.[4]


In August 1998, just under six months after the game's original release, Iouri Lechtchev discovered the map's files remaining in the game's assets. After some experimentation he found that it still worked in a rudimentary form, and took it upon himself to release and repackage it for play, naming it Capture the Flag. Without access to the game's source code he was not able to resolve the crashes, add the intended scoring or enforce teamplay, but the map was nevertheless released in a relatively usable state.


At some point either the 1.4 Patch or Ken Miller's 1.5 Patch resolved the crash issue that was present in Attack and Defend.[citation needed] Scoring and team play were not implemented, but the gamemode was rendered completely playable. Despite this, Capture the Flag was never added to the map list.


Some of the ideas that went into the creation of Attack and Defend would later re-emerge in Battlezone II's implementation of Strategy; two teams assaulting strategic locations instead of each other. It would later appear almost verbatim in the doomed Unofficial Expansion Pack under the name Reactor Wars. In 2014 the 1.5 Patch introduced networking in Lua, with most or all of it's functionality being derived from the unused Attack and Defend code.[citation needed]



  1. Battlezone (1998), bzone.zfs
  2. Battlezone (1998), multg1.bzn
  3. Capture the Flag (Attack and Defend map), multg1.txt
  4. Mike Arkin"I did not know that we included it. I thought it never worked and was pulled." - Comment to Iouri Lechtchev when asked about Capture the Flag (Attack and Defend map)
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