If you have questions, sugggestions, want news or links added to the site, submit files for the archive or redirect, or submit a video for the Tactical Ops TV YouTube channel contact me with the links below.
Don't send any files as email attachment, upload them to a file sharing website such as Zippyshare or Google Drive and send the links.
Video for Tactical Ops TV
When you have a TO video you want to have uploaded to the channel contact me and i will send u login for a FTP server so it's easy to send big files.
* I want to put things in better order on this page and explain some things a bit more detailed but haven't got around to doing it yet.
The file archive was first online on the domains tacticalops.tk and tacops.tk in 2015. From early 2017 to early 2019 it was hosted on to-files.nl and after that it moved to tactical-ops.eu. I started to dislike the generic sounding "to-files", sounds too much like a random file site filled with ads that apear on google. Having tactical-ops part of the domain is also better for google search results. Too bad all other "tacticalops" and "tactical-ops" domains are taken, but atleast .eu was cheap.
Between the downloading and collecting of files in late 2015 i started the Tactical Ops Channel on YouTube, both trying to show simple guide videos with downloads links in the video descriptions and to show that there are still servers and players online. A few other TO players have also contributed many videos to the channel, view the About page on the channel for more info.
In 2015 i saw that allot of TO websites went offline and there were only a few left. I thought if this continues then in a few year all custom files would be vanished from the internet. With the main focus on custom maps, i started to download all files i could find from the internet. Searching with Google and Bing for multiple days i found all remaining websites and downloaded all files. After this i started to download maps from servers before i realized i could download complete server redirects from both TO and UT99 servers.
When i was sorting all custom maps a few problems were encountered such as allot of maps included files that would overwrite official TO files, maps with different files with the same name, maps with missing packages, filenames with spaces and other http redirect incompatible characters and this all had to be fixed. Since allot of the old map downloads had missing files and some even corrupt files there was decided to repack all maps and mappacks to seperate files with all packages included.
One of the biggest breakthrough was finding a stash of old "hidden" redirects from long forgotten TO servers by a game-server host who still had all their redirects online. Also i found a public 90+ GB UT99 redirect with various old TO maps and other TO redirects which i downloaded completely. This combined with all the maps downloaded from the last few remaining online websites and all online game-servers i had quite a stash of files to start an archive with.
At one point i came across the site tactical-ops.org back in 2016 that also started a project to repack all maps into induvidual downloads. I found some new maps there but they stripped all readme files from the maps. Which i then tried to track down and add afterwards. In the end of 2017 i also came in contact with the LST Crew and they gave me acces to their map collection and redirect so i could download everything they had which also led to many new maps. I also have been contacted by some old TO websites such as Spielwiese and old server admins who send me their map collections.
Luckily with the large collection of packages it was also possible to find certain lost packages that were missing from all old TO maps and mappack downloads. The missing packages that got permantly lost over time have been recreated to make all those maps playable. I did the easy ones and the difficult ones i couldn't repair were done by "Sp1r1tSuxor".
The collecting, testing of all maps and repairing of some maps was very time consuming. Luckily the sorting process of repacking all maps with all required packages, the removal of modified official files, the removing of duplicates and checking of different files with same names could all mostly be automated with help of various programs. (7-Zip, MyMapManager, AntiTwin, BatchFileRenamer)
The map screenshots was something i decided to start early 2018, but realized quickly it takes allot more time then estimated to start every map and find optimal screenshot position. In summer of 2018 at 1200 maps screenshotted i stopped since at that time i was adding allot of new maps to the collection in folders once completed. Then almost a year later in May 2019 i started again and did another 450 screenshots. In July 2019 "Spike" contributed 300+ map screenshots and completed the S folder and started on the B folder. In October 2019 "Sp1r1tSuxor" submitted 100+ map screenshots and completed the B folder. Now the total count is 2300/2760 maps screenshotted and only maps in * folder are remaining.
In the summer of 2018 a project was started with the help of "Sp1r1tSuxor" to convert all the old maps that wouldn't work on TO 3.4 & 3.5. Currently over 300+ maps have been converted and less then 5% remains but the work on those maps grinded to a halt. In about 2 weeks of constant converting and repairing textures i managed to do most of the easy ones. The difficult and time consuming are all repaired by "Sp1r1tSuxor" in the period afterwards. After this it seems "Sp1r1tSuxor" took it upon himself to convert allot of the old SWAT maps, he has currently done 90% of those. He also converts UT99 maps and even makes brand new maps in 2019.
When i was first testing the server the only mapvote with support for more than 1024+ maps had to rebuild the maplist after every map change, this meant after every map change you had to wait 2 minutes before the next map to load.
For this reason in 2017 i built a server with an Intel G3258 "Pentium Anniversary Edition" CPU, these little Haswell based cpu's could be overclocked even on a non Z87/Z97 motherboard chipset with the proper bios. So i bought a cheap H81 motherboard and delidded the CPU and was able to run a maximum cpu frequency of 5.2Ghz on 1.53v.
The motherboard didn't allow memory overclocking i was stuck to DDR3-1400 @ 7-7-7-20 timings, i bought an oldskool low timings DDR3 kit to squeeze out every bit of performance to try make the mapvote run faster. For storage it was using an old Samsung 830 Pro 128GB SSD.
Too bad loading the map list would still take 60+ seconds... after every map the server would just be loading and most players would leave.
After passing 2048 maps this mapvote would crash and i even ran 2 servers for a short time with all maps split up over 2 servers...
Untill one day randomly searching google i found updated version of MapVoteUL that supported up to 4096 maps and didn't need to reload the map list every map change. This changed everything and now the server was actually usable and didn't require an insane CPU frequency to fix the super slow map change. (Since the server is only single threaded)
At the beginning i hosted the server from my home, a year later it was hosted 1.5 years from the place i worked, afterwards a short time period from my home again. Now its running from a VPS in Germany.
Below some pictures of the delidded CPU with too much Liquid Metal paste and picture from the Case. Had a nice Arctic Freezer 11 Low Profile Cooler and didn't look that bad in an old Acer case.
My first encounter was with Unreal, i walked into a toy store to the PC games section and i saw this game on sale for cheap. Took it home and it realized this was the best game i played up to that point. Back then i played this on the PC of my parents.
A year later i got my first PC a Pentium 3 and my neighbour who was really into PC gaming installed UT99 for me, at that point i didnt even knew UT existed but the combination of crazy maps and the even better than unreal music was amazing. (At this point i didnt have internet so many bot games...)
Few years later a friend in school said he had an amazing mod for UT, i didnt knew what a mod was so i visited at his home to play. That my first encounter with TO (on v3.1.5) and also when i learned what mods are. On that same day i downloaded and installed TO myself and been hooked ever since.
I guess it might be a surprise for all oldschool players who started on early SWAT or TO 1.6-2.2 versions. When i started to play TO it just before the times when the mod version split up into retail version and some versions where online compatible and others aren't etc.
I never played TO competitive or payed much attention to the scene. For me TO was always the go to game to have some fun and play custom maps. I was always looking for new maps to explore and was a big fan of fun and fall servers.
For me the time of 2000-2005 are the glory days of PC gaming. I played Half-Life (CS, DOD), Quake III (Urban Terror), RTCW, Enemy Territory, Soldier Of Fortune, BF1942 (Desert Combat), Call of Duty 1, Vietcong and more. No season pass or DLC, just games with mod support and endless content.
Beside the first few years TO became a game i did not play 24/7 throughout all the years. It was more the game i reinstalled every so often, would play for few months then maybe come back a few months later. I also bought UT2004 and played some TO:Crossfire back in its day.
I played with many different names, some of them that i can remember: 2good4u, fatass, underliner, baltazar, freakandel, sirsmokealot.... I think joeycracknl i started to late use after 2013. But the list would probably be 20 names long if my memory was better.
So as you can read i might not be the most oldschool TO player or have the most play time. Im just the guy who saw that all TO sites are vanishing and all the (Custom) files would dissapear from the internet if somebody would not go and collect all that was remaining and preserve them.
I think the truth is that i might have played more CS+CS:S+CS:GO then total of TO+TO:C. But its still one of my childhood's great game i played for countless hours. And spend at least a few 1000 hours in collecting, testing, fixing, screenshotting, the preserving of files over the last 5 years. And that is not counting play time...
Thanks for reading,
jo0Oey aka joeycracknl