In order for a multiplayer game to be as extensive and fun as possible, game modes are created so that each map has its own rules. In the first official release of the mod only two game modes were available, but with time and dedication the development team improved them, as well adding new game modes to expand on the mod's potential. As of Beta 3.1 there are six official game modes.
- 1 Released Game Modes
- 2 Discontinued Game Modes
- 3 Fan-made Game Modes
- 4 Planned Game Modes
Released Game Modes
Booty (BT) is a game mode based on Capture the Flag (CTF). Each team has the goal of stealing other team's treasure chests to earn points and reaching zero in their timer. One big difference between Booty Quest and a generic Capture the Flag map is the fact that the chests require a player to lay down their weapons and use both hands to carry them, while in CTF maps (such as those in Team Fortress 2 and Quake) players can run over the flag to carry it without any extra effort.
While carrying a chest, the player is vulnerable to enemy attacks and, unlike in CTF maps, holding weapons is impossible since the player realistically carries the chest with his bare hands. However, the player is not completely defenseless; if the special meter is full, the player can press the special attack button to boost his speed, giving him a substantial advantage. Players can also throw chests at enemies to cause minor damage. For a riskier approach, the player can drop the chest and attack the enemy. If the chest isn't carried by another player and it stays too long in an idle state it respawns in the chest area from whence it last came. Chest carriers can also defend themselves by kicking the enemy.
Trinket Wars (TW) is a game mode with similarities to Deathmatch, where players need to kill a certain amount of players until their counter reaches zero. The only way to make a kill valid is if a player is carrying a team-specific trinket.
The trinket can be dropped at any time by pressing G. When carrying the trinket, the player's health gets a boost -and regenerates if lost- and their health status rises beyond "Not A Scratch" to "Enlightned". Teammates within the trinket's area of effect also get a health boost and their kills inside the area are also valid. Like the player who carries the trinket, the other players' also regenerate.
The player carrying the trinket or those who are close to the carrier have a team-specific emblem glow that replaces their shadows so that players can recognize enemies who can make valid kills. The three trinkets are specific to each team. The Knights have the Holy Grail, the Vikings have the Mead Horn, and the Pirates have the Grog Cup.
If the player who carries the trinket dies, other players of the same team need to get it back as quickly as possible; if the trinket is left alone for too long, it will disappear until it respawns in the possession of a worthier and generally more-alive player. If it rolls over a stage hazard, it will quickly reappear on safe ground near the hazard.
ªAs of Beta 3.0 Saints is no longer an official map and it won't get any updates, however it can be downloaded as a PVKII Classic map.
Last Team Standing
Last Team Standing (LTS) functions exactly like arena mode. All players have to fight to survive and claim victory, while the players that were killed stay dead until the end of the round. If the timer runs out, a Sudden Death mode causes a chain of stage hazards to activate, limiting the player's movements and thus their chances of surviving. A round can end in a draw if the timer within the Sudden Death mode runs out or if the last surviving players of enemy teams die roughly at the same time. Occasionally a round can start with Sudden Death Mode activating immediately.
Territory (TE) is a game mode with a self-explanatory goal. While it doesn't work the same way as Team Fortress 2's Territorial Control it works more like it's Control Points game mode, more precisely the 5CP variant, or the Territorial Control maps from other Source games like Day of Defeat: Source. Depending the number of territories present in the map, the teams must capture the existing areas for their timer to run out, much like Booty maps; if a team captures two areas, the timer runs out faster; if a team captures all existing areas in the map, the enemy teams have only thirty seconds to capture back one of the territories before the round is over. The only map which doesn't have that specific rule is Cara, which has only two capture areas, which are mobile horses.
Objective Push (OP) is a game mode programmed by CrackaPolly. It's a game mode with no specific goal where the mapper can create his own set of rules for his own map. Due to it's concept's nature there are no official maps that use the Objective Push prefix, however the mode's code is included in the mod's SDK, ready for people to create their own maps using said prefix.
Team Deathmatch (TD), like other multiplayer games with Deathmatch mode, is a free-for-all game where players have the simple task of killing enemy teams' players. While there are no official maps, Source SDK users can create custom maps using the game mode's prefix under the info_pvk entity.
Discontinued Game Modes
Booty Tag was one of the two original game modes available in the mod, the other one being Booty. In it's essence is a prototyped version of Trinket Wars only instead of three trinkets players only have a treasure chest which respawns at a specific location in the map. Much like the trinkets, whoever carries the chest gives to it's team the advantage of killing the enemies with the counter slowly reaching zero. The game mode proved to be impractical because players could hide anywhere in the map and give infinite advantage to it's team. A year later it was reworked as Holy Grail.
Holy Grail makes substantial improvements over Booty Tag. The chest is replaced by the Holy Grail, the grail carrier can now attack on his own and grail could be shared automatically by any member. A couple of years later the game mode was further improved to become Trinket Wars, so that it's gameplay becomes more balanced for all three teams.
Fan-made Game Modes
Capture the Flag
A traditional Capture the Flag Mode was coded by programmer Spirrwell and it can be downloaded for the mod. The code can also be downloaded for Hammer and built maps under it. The game mode is in development and as of January 2015 only two teams can be used rather than three, mostly because Capture the Flag is primarly conceived for two teams only.
Planned Game Modes
Since Pirates, Vikings and Knights II is far from having a definitive version, more game modes are planned and currently being tested by the development team and beta testers. Such modes include a traditional Capture the Flag mode, a Siege mode where teams must defend their own bases, a Slay the Dragon mode with a self-explanatory goal, among other ideas.