Internet Relay Chat is used by most alliances for players to communicate with each other in real-time. Most alliances have at least 2 channels: a public IRC channel for inter-alliance mingling and a war channel, which is a private channel where kill runs are held.
In-game player attack news can also be viewed in real-time (or with a very slight delay) on irc.earthempires.com (See news channels below).
Connecting to IRC
To connect to the official Earth Empires server via the web (with Mibbit), visit http://www.earthempires.com/irc. GameSurge (another popular network amongst Earthers), also has a Mibbit client available at http://gamesurge.net/chat. Check with your alliance or see a list of rooms @ IRC directory.
While connecting to IRC through the web is convenient and easy, depending on the number of servers or channels you want to connect to, an IRC client on your own computer may be more beneficial. This allows you to setup favorite servers and channels to join on connect. Amongst other options, you may also be able to set off alarms (also called Highlights) to notify you when your country is under attack or somebody says your name. Here is a list of popular IRC clients:
|XChat2||http://www.silverex.org/||The free Windows version. No GTK dependencies. External scripting support: Perl, Python, Ruby, and TCL||No built-in scripting.||
|HexChat||http://hexchat.org/||100% free. Based on XChat2, continued development of XChat/XChat2||?|
|IceChat||http://www.icechat.net/||100% free. Scripting, plugins.||?|
|LimeChat||http://limechat.net/mac/||Free Mac OS client.||Only for Mac|
|Quassel||http://quassel-irc.org/||Free and open source.||No scripting capabilities.|
|ChatZilla||http://chatzilla.hacksrus.com/||An add-on for Firefox lets you chat right in your browser. 100% Free.||No scripting, limited highlights.|
|KVirc||http://www.kvirc.net/||100% free. Cross-platform. Multi-server support. Extensive built-in scripting capabilities. Highlights.||Due to the number of options and configurability, it may be intimidating to new users.|
|Colloquy||http://colloquy.info/||Free. Highlights. Little is known about Colloquy, but it is a preferred client for Mac users.||?|
|Konversation||http://konversation.kde.org/||%100 Free. Has highlights and external scripting capabilities. Multi-server support. Highly configurable and easy to use.||Linux-only. No built-in scripting|
|irssi||http://www.irssi.org/||%100 Free. Has highlights and external scripting capabilities. Multi-server support. Highly configurable. Console-based client.||Best suited for power-users. Console-based client|
|pidgin||http://www.pidgin.im/||%100 free. Not only does this messenger handle IRC, but also a wide range of other IMs like ICQ, MSN, AIM to name a few. It is reliable and works quite well.||Does not have support for multiple IRC servers.|
|mIRC †||http://www.mirc.com||Highly configurable, has highlights, can connect to multiple servers at once. Built-in scripting language. Easy to use, but also geared for power-users.||Nags you to register. No longer works after 30 day trial period. $20 USD to register.|
|XChat||http://xchat.org/||Free (for linux). Easy to configure, easy to use. Multi-server support. Great entry-level client.||$19.99 USD (for windows). No built-in scripting.|
† A user-submitted tutorial for mIRC is available.
Please see the external documentation for each client and how to use it. It is not within the scope of this page to teach you about your client of choice or how to use it.
Due to the lack of decent monospaced fonts for windows, you may want to install bitstream-vera. The font is very nice on the eyes, and makes reading the news feed channels a lot nicer. It is completely free:
- ftp://ftp.gnome.org/pub/GNOME/sources/ttf-bitstream-vera/1.10/ttf-bitstream-vera-1.10.zip (direct download link)
Most modern clients provide an easy to use GUI for navigating through servers and channels. If you are new to IRC, it's a good idea to read through this section.
Connecting to Servers
Generally, GUI clients make connecting to (new) servers quite easy, but how each of them do this may differ slightly. Once you have located how to add a server, you'll need to know some information. As an example, we'll use the Earth Empires IRC server for first-timers.
Name: Earth Empires IRC Server address: irc.earthempires.com Port: 6667
Be sure you've gone through your other options carefully and set your nickname and other personal details accordingly.
One command that is virtually universal amongst all clients is the /join command. All channels on IRC (on any server) begin with the # sign. If you were instructed to go to #earthempires on irc.earthempires.com, you would type /join #earthempires or /j #earthempires (short form) and thats it- you should now be in the main EE social channel. It's a great room to get to know other people you are playing with. New players are encouraged to ask questions if needed. There are many veteran players around who can help you.
Getting a complete channel listing for the server(s) you are connected to may depend on the client you use. Please refer to your client's documentation for further details. Most clients can see a list of channels with the /list command though.
More often than not, there are not many rules to follow. Common sense is your best friend here. Different servers and channels have different rules. You are expected to learn and know them. Channel operators (marked with an @ by their name depending on the client), will usually warn an offending chatter before kicking or possibly banning them. Here's some common sense tips:
- Harassment or abuse towards anybody on any IRC server could result in banishment from the channel, the server, or possibly even the game. If you don't have anything nice to say to someone, don't say it.
- If a server or channel has strict rules regarding offensive language, you are expected to abide by them and keep it clean.
- Most public channels are PG-13. Offensive language may be tolerated to some degree. It is usually good practice to stay on the clean side though.
- Do not set off people's highlights for no good reason.
- NEVER speak IN ALL CAPS unless you are yelling at somebody or accentuating something.
A list of all known public servers/channels is being compiled on the IRC Directory page. As stated in the etiquette section above, you are expected to know how to behave.
Public Game Channels
There is one official public game channel for all players of any alliance. The channel #earthempires is on irc.earthempires.com (port 6667). For questions and discussion about wiki editing, join #wiki.
irc.earthempires.com has several news channels which show all attacks/defends on a particular server or on a per-alliance (tag) basis. The channels are:
- #(server).(tag) for any alliance Server and (tag); #alliance. and #ffa. show untagged news for those servers.
Public Alliance Channels
Many alliances have public channels (see IRC directory). These tend to be a where random players from multiple alliances socialize the most.
Private Alliance Channels
Private alliance channels are generally (but not exclusively) used to hold war chats.
Joining Private Channels
To access these channels, typically one is expected to be in the alliance of which the channel belongs. In most cases, these channels are locked with a password, also called a key. If you attempt to join one of these channels without a key, you will likely get a message like "Cannot join channel, (+k)." If you are part of the alliance, been given the key, or have been invited to the room, joining is simple: /j #warchannel <key>. If the key is "123456": /j #warchannel 123456
Maintaining Channel Privacy
In any case, if you are given a channel key to a private room; you are expected to keep the key private. It is good practice to join keyed rooms from your client's status window. There are many times when an accidental preceding space before /j has inadvertently posted the key to a public room. If this happens, please tell an operator of the private channel you were trying to join that the key has slipped out and to change it. These things happen from time to time.
Server services such as AuthServ, ChanServ and NickServ are used to protect nicknames from being stolen, or registered channels from being hijacked. Different servers have different services. For a brief introduction to how these services work, see IRC services.
To protect your nick name, you need to register with NickServ. Replace [password] with something you will not forget, and [email] must be a valid e-mail address.
/msg nickserv REGISTER [password] [email]
The first time this is performed, you will be automatically identified. On subsequent logins, you will need to re-identify yourself. Most IRC clients have a way to perform commands on connect. Or, you could set an alias to easily identify yourself. When you login, you need to:
/msg nickserv IDENTIFY [password]
This whole process ensures that your nickname cannot be used by anyone else. Nicknames that are not used anymore are subject to automatic expiration. They will be deleted after 90 days if not used.