Wolfhowl's Game of The Week: Territorial.io
We dissect a medium sized speedrunning community from the bottom up, increasing excitement and injecting a new passion for a game otherwise unexplored.
This Web game by indie creator David Tschacher is very simple from the outside but incredibly sophisticated when investigated. Territorial.io is a strategy/expansion game mostly known for it's multiplayer play. Released in August of 2021, the game has seen legends rise, the domination of clans such as [CORGI], [OG], and [ELITE], and, of course, it's entrance onto Speedrun.com.
Even though the game is known for it's multiplayer, it's singleplayer speedrunning community still thrives. Players can choose one of sixteen maps; 6 of which are base on real world geography. There they can choose where to spawn. A good spawn should have distance from bots, a good distance from other players, and a large continent (For example, on a world map you wouldn't want to spawn in New Zealand.) Players then begin to take over empty, free territory. Any Territorial player must take 3 things into account: their interest in the top right, their troops on the top and their attack bar on the bottom. A players interest tells the player how many troops will be produced. (7% is max and 0% is the minimum, while the average player will spend most of the game at ~1.5% to around ~0.5%, depending on how aggressive they are.) Players must be mindful that there is a "Max Cap" at which players can no longer produce troops. The only way for your "Max Cap" to increase is to take over more territory. The troops in the top represents your strength: your power, ability to attack, and ability to defend your borders. The attack bar on the bottom tells you how many troops you are attacking with. This number will change frequently, however during mid-late game will hover around 8-12%. This bar is the only thing of the 3 mentioned that the player can control.
Troop Count and Troop Cap
One of the most important aspects of Territorial.io is your opening. The opening comes after your spawn, when expanding into free territory. DO NOT send out all your troops. The most common opening, renowned by the community, speedrunners, and new runners alike is the Greenbiscuit Opening. One of the most influential and important names in Territorial, and it's speedrunning community for that matter, @Greenbiscuit's opening was the first to become seriously intertwined with the player base. It goes like this:
For clarification, a cycle is when the bars on the outside of the troop counter hit the top. You want to time your attacks so that they finish when the bar on the outside hits the top of the box.
Speedrunners play with 512 bots. There is a separate category for each map and difficulty. %RUNS require a 99% of the map and the victory screen. %TROOPS require runners to reach 200k, 500k, 1M, or 5M troops. 100%ONLY require runners to only full send, or lock the attack bar at 100%. Lastly is 2min%Run runs, trying to conquer as much land in 2 minutes.
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