Everyone knows that TF2 has a wide range of community servers available, but there is a growing problem - many TF2 community groups are making Team Scramble a Premium feature on their servers.
First off, let's talk about Team Scrambling:
Team scrambling is a balancing feature found on many online multiplayer games. What it does is at either the end of a round or after a successful vote, players are randomly assigned to both teams. This is to ensure a more equal playing field, preventing long-time professional players from outright steamrolling novices in an act known as "Team-stacking" (where all the top players agree to stay on the same team). Yes, it may annoy players by denying them a potential killstreak record but it prevents one-sided matches.
Next, let's go over why many tf2 groups require premium features:
Premium features are additional features available on a server accessed by players donating money (or the community-accepted in-game trade currency e.g. Mann Co. Keys in TF2) to keep a server running. Usually these features are related to server entry such as the ability to skip ads, reserve spaces on the server, etc. Some are purely cosmetic such as particle effects on your character while you're on the server. However... there are some features that heavily effect the gameplay. These include, but are not limited to:
-Super-upgraded, overpowered weapons activated on command
-Immunity from Autobalance and scrambling
-Ability to initiate votes to kick and temporarily ban players
and, of course,
-Ability to intiate votes to scramble the teams
So what is the Problem with making votes a premium feature? Well...:
This prevents most normal players from balancing out the teams, which means it's possible that there will be a 20-win deficit between two teams (as seen on www.saigns.de) and as such will make it unfair for most players.
What should you do to avoid being caught on such a server?:
If you do connect to such a server disconnect ASAP and add it to your server blacklist, then post on the game's community hub a warning about the server's group in order to prevent groups like this from getting players.