GENERAL GUARD STRATEGIES
1: There are many boxes, and other items spread around many maps. Use them to your advantage. Sometimes a thief can use them to get to areas such as trap door to the attic on Korman. In this case, you may want to move or destroy them.
Be careful with your boxes. If a door opens on them, they are destroyed.
2: Guards also get items such as Caltrops, mines, and whistlers. These are valuable tools. Ill explain each one separately.
Caltrops: Many people places these either too close, inside, or too far out of a door. When you want to get someone in your caltrops try to place them so that if the thief tries to jump...he hits his head on the door jam and has to come down on the trops. This can be hard to do. It helps to be able to place a couple lines of trops in a row so if a thief does jump over one, he will likely come down on the other.
Mines: Many people misuse these also. They throw em pretty much all over. This is bad, because they can be lockpicked and used against you. Try to place these in areas the thief wont see them. Hidden around a corner, under a window...not in the open...especially next to a shadow.
Whistlers: These are very interesting tools. You can place them in doorways to make travel through said door hard. You can put them next to walls where a thief may pass, and it will detect through a wall. Try to put these, like mines, in areas thieves wont see them. It also protects them from being destroyed by water arrows. Also, very important, don't place Whistlers next to mines! If the mine goes off, the whistler goes boom!
I know many experienced members know some of this stuff....but I even see them just tossing mines and trops around with no real thought in it.
These are tried and true strats...use them.
The best way to handle thieves are to buy tag-arrows (or n00bie-flamearrows ), speed-potions and a sword. So if you spot a Thief, you can first tag him, then take up the sword while you swallow a speed-potion - and then smash the Thief to bits!
Do not run into shadows without a reason. There are enough lamers out there that will ko you for no single reason. When you
relight a torch, face your back to the wall...so you can see the thief come to you. Also they can't ko you from the front.
And well...like I said in the tips for thieves, follow the dead body path, or look for open doors.
The more you play, the more tricks you will learn.
1. Sometimes, turn the other way, just for a second, when a thief is spotted, and you're about to attack, you will usually get a flash bomb in the face. Turning away for a split second, the effects of the flash bomb are less.
2. And when you are about to nab a thief, and are blinded, get your mace or sword out, and start swinging! Have nabbed many a thief that way.
3. Load up on as many flares as you can, some missions are darker than others, and when someone is spotted, you can throw it their way, they light up, then choice is yours, arrows, mace or sword.
4. Learn to place guards around corner, off to the side, when a thief comes in, and they don't see the guard right away, can be nabbed.
5. And when your the last guard left, don't stand still, when a thief needs something, evidence, a jewel, your an easy target for an arrow, move around protect whatever it is you need to guard.
Also get in solo time to learn the maps, and spectate, you can learn from people.
Buy flares! The use flare key is bound to G by default, so hit this if you think there's a thief in the dark.
Work as a team - You cannot hold a flare and attack at the same time so get one guy to flare while the other beats the thief up. It makes sense.
Use the fire arrows - they're much more useful than in TDP as they set an opponent alight, meaning he is visible and taking damage, as well as having splash damage so there is more chance to hit.
Resupply! A guard with no flares is a soon to be dead guard. Resupplying is free - just look out for the chest.
Tag a thief then concentrate on him - lone thieves are easier targets as in a group you may find your back turned to one.
Stop and listen - most guards forget that you can hear things like missed blackjack swings and footsteps even if you cannot see the thief.
Tips by LaughingRat:
A lot of what NeoP said boils down to: Teamplay. Use the whisper to coordinate and plan with your teammates, whether you're a guard or thief. If you're a thief, one of you be a distraction to draw guards away from an objective so another can grab it. If you're a guard, and one of your teammates seems to be chasing a thief, back him up (unless you're leaving a key objective unguarded by doing that). One guard alone can be easy pickings for a skilled thief.
I've found that hit-and-runs work well. Get into a building and clear out the immediate area, but don't try to go all the way through. Back out, and enter from another point. Not possible on all maps, but works well on Grange, Gerome, Flats, and Bourgeois.
But most important, teamplay. If your teammates make mistakes, don't bitch. We all do that, and you degrade your ability to work together by doing that. And above all, remember, it's only a game. You're not going to win every round, so don't get upset when you lose. Just congratulate the winner, and play the next round.