Tricks, Tips and Techniques

During a typical Carball match you will see other players perform amazing feats. These feats are usually accomplished by combining vehicle acrobatics and power-ups and were discovered by experimentation and practice. You are encouraged to experiment and discover your own Carball tricks, however we provide the benefit of experience with this document. The Carball loading screens also provide helpful information on this subject.

The number of tricks and techniques used in Carball seem to have limitless variations. For this reason, not all of the possible techniques are described in this document. The most widely used techniques are covered along with an extensive list of general tips.

Specific Techniques

There are a few techniques that are very useful, widely practiced, and form the basis of more complicated techniques. They are described in detail below in order to give you a good understanding of the fundamentals of advanced ball manipulation. Default controls for various actions are mentioned in brackets.

Chip Shot

Drift towards the ball, jump into the air (C), then tip the nose of your car towards the ground (C). While in the air activate a Nitro Boost and aim your vehicle such that the car is wedged between the ground and ball. This will send the ball flying into the air above the heads of your opponents.

Scoop Shot

Begining of the scoop shot.

Drive towards the ball, jump into the air (C), then tip the nose of your car towards the ground (C). Attempt to land the nose of your car so it wedges between the ground and ball then immediately Quickflip (Quickflip Button). This will send the ball flying into the air above the heads of your opponents.

Rocket Hax

Rocket hax from the side.

Fire a Pocket Rocket from the air just in front of or behind the ball and the ball will be sent flying through the air. The ball will fly in the direction opposite to the approach of the Pocket Rocket. (IE. If the Pocket Rocket lands in front of the ball, the ball flies forward, if the Pocket Rocket lands behind the ball, the ball flies backwards.) Quickflipping into the air over the ball is the most common way of setting up this technique.

PostPunk Curve

Postpunk Curve.

Named after a specific player, this technique is particularly difficult but very useful Build up for a spin jump while approaching the ball. A moment after you release the buttons to perform the jump, activate a Nitro Boost. If timed just right, the combination of speed from the boost and the momentum from moving forward and spinning will cause you to travel in a curved path.

More Tricks

In addition to the basic techniques for knocking the ball into the air or driving your vehicle in an unusual manner, there is an assortment of more complex common Carball maneuvers. The possible variations of these maneuvers are too numerous to list, however, we have grouped together some major themes for creating Carball tricks and provided detailed examples for each group.

Many Power-Ups Will Affect the Ball

The ball being gooed.

You can use this to your advantage with some imagination. For example, dropping a Goo Pile directly onto the ball will cause it to fly into the air. Dropping a Goo Pile in front of the ball will cause the ball to fly into the air, but not as far, and only if the ball rolls onto the pile with the correct timing. The Flip-Mine Alt-Fire grenade will attach to the ball and continue to stick to the ball while it rolls allowing you the opportunity to explode the grenade with the timing that throws the ball in the direction of your choosing. Firing a Pocket Rocket directly at the ball while at ground level will not cause the ball to fly into the air, but it will cause the ball to move forward with great speed, possibly fast enough to unexpectedly slip by your opponents. Similarly, touching the ball with the shield of the Portable Repulse Field Generator will cause the ball to move with extra speed. These are all just examples to help you think of the power-ups as not just weapons, but tools to better manipulate the ball. There are many ways to exploit the power-ups. The power-ups that affect the ball are the Pocket Rocket, Goo Pile, Spider-Mine, Flip-Mine, Nuke, Portable Repulse Field Generator (Only Primary), and Electro-Pulse Generator (Only Primary).

Jumping is Useful in Many Ways

Two cars jumping into each other at face off.

Players are well served to remember that jumping into the air can be used in many ways. Jumping into an opponent in mid-air can interfere with the other team's plans. The direction of the ball can be influenced by exactly what part of your vehicle hits the ball. For example, you can drive underneath a bouncing ball, and do a Quickflip with the aim of hitting the ball with the hood of your car. Execute this correctly, and the ball will be sent in the direction opposite its original trajectory. Found yourself in mid-air and directly in front of the ball? Activate a boost and sending the already flying ball into stratospheric heights. Aim correctly and you may even end up blocking an otherwise "certain to score" goal.

Block the Ball with Your Vehicle

There are less than obvious ways to block the ball with your vehicle. If the ball is pushed by another vehicle into the side of your car the ball will normally be sent flying into the air. This can be be particularly useful to knock the ball into the air when you lack Power-Ups on maps that have goal areas located high above the ground. Please note that this works best if you are still, and the ball is pushed along a straight line perpendicular to the side of your vehicle. If the ball is pushed into the side of your vehicle at a shallow angle, the ball will be sent with extra speed on a path parallel to the side of your car. This can be used to your advantage, especially when near the opponents goal area. For example, if the ball is next to you and your opponent is driving towards you with the intent of knocking the ball and/or you from the side you could position yourself so that your opponent knocks the ball against the side of your car, causing the ball to slide along the side of your car and to hurl forward into the opponents goal area.

You Do Not have to be Standing Upright

Boosting from the upside down position.

Keep in mind that your vehicle does not have to be upright or even moving in order to be doing something. You can still activate a power-up while upside down. For example, if you activate a Nitro Boost and hit the ball while upside down you will knock the ball up into the air a little. In theory, you can jump over a ball, land upside down and quickly boost into the ball. Although you will not have steering abilities while upside down, this tactic does have the advantages of taking your opponents by surprise and hitting the ball sooner than if you had to drive around the ball. Firing a Pocket Rocket while upside is still useful if their is something you wish to rocket is in front of you and this normally takes your opponents by surprise.

General Tips

Below you will find a collection of more informal tips. These are general hints and ideas to help your overall playing.

Teamwork is Very Important in Carball

Communicate with your teammates. Make passes, be prepared to follow-up on passes, set-ups and failed scoring attempts. Do not horde power-ups from teammates.

Be Aware of Your Surroundings

Ball in front, opponents flying above.

If you know where your teammates, opponents and the ball are in relation to each other you are at an advantage. It helps to develop a sense of what is going on and what everyone is doing.

Stay Back

Typically, it makes it more difficult for your team to control the ball if several people are simultaneously trying to take it from the other team, extract it from a corner, etc. Better shots at the goal area will usually present themselves if you hang back and exhibit some patience. (This tip is best used with some common sense; If you are hanging back but see a fleeting opportunity to score, take it.)

Ramming

Red car ramming a blue car.

There is allot to be said for simply interfering with the plans of the opposing team. Ramming into your opponents can stop them from controlling the ball, making accurate scoops/haxes and reduce their ability to coherently work together. Think of ramming in the context of team play, similar to how hockey players check their opponents or American/Australian/Canadian football players tackle each other.

Be Careful with Power-Ups

You do not want to waste power-ups. Be sure that now is the right time before activating one. Also keep in mind that it is very frustrating to fail an attempt to boost/scoop/rocket the ball, so be sure to use good timing and aim with your power-ups. Equally frustrating is missing out on a possible opportunity to score because you hesitated waiting for the absolute perfect time to use your power-ups and during your moment of hesitation your vehicle was destroyed/rammed, etc.

Walls Can be Used to Your Advantage

On most maps, the ball will bounce off of the walls. Push the ball against the wall at an angle and it will be sent flying up the playing field. This is a simple, quick way to move the ball towards the opponents end of a playing field.

Know Your Maps

Some maps will have specific features and quirks. Knowing these can give you a slight edge over your opponents. For example, some maps will place certain Power-Ups in spots that are not obvious.

Drive Backwards

It is normally faster to do a Spin Jump than to drive in a circle in order to turn around. However, there are times when driving backwards is advantageous. Although driving backwards is slower than driving forwards, driving backwards is sometimes the quickest way to knock the ball away from your opponents or to get in the way of your opponents.

Get Out of the Way

Unintentionally ramming into your team mates will happen in Carball. Try to reduce how much this happens to as little as possible. Help your team mates by getting out of their way. Sometimes you and a team mate will run into each other nearly head on. Normally both of you should back away, however there are times when it is beneficial for your team mate to drive through you or vice-versa. Is the ball right behind you and your team mate has a Nitro Boost? Then try to get out of the way and/or let your team mate plow through you. Try to develop a sense of who has a better reason to drive through and when you should just both back away.

Defend

Break aways happen frequently and suddenly in Carball. You can reduce the effect of a breakaway by your opponents by consistently having a team member stay near the goal.

Attack

If your team is outnumbered by your opponents, you may not want to keep anyone on defense as it may increase your disadvantage. For example, if you have two team members and your opponents have three players, leaving a teammate on defense will result in you attacking three opponents by yourself.

Seeing around the corner from the ball's POV.

See as the Ball Sees

Remember that you can see the game from the point of view of the ball by holding down the Ballcam Button. There are times when the ball is out of view or far away when the Ballcam will provide valuable information such as where the ball is located, if it is going to make its target, and if your opponents are coming towards the ball.


The Most Important Tip of All

Like all networkable video games, Carball has its share of players who treat other players poorly, throwing around insults and creating great stress for everybody, even themselves. Please do not become one of these players. Remember it is just a video game. The best tip of all comes from a quote made by the player who goes by the handle Gruelsicle: "Don't take five minutes off of your life over Carball."