I always play to win, regardless of gametype, but I rarely cap flags. I also don’t play defense. I play to slay, and as it happens, CTF is (I think) my best gametype with respect to W/L. What some CTF players (sounds like OP included) don’t seem to realize is that it is entirely possible to play the objective by slaying. Case in point: it is a lot easier for my team to complete the objective when the opposing players are respawning constantly. I do see what you’re complaining about though, to an extent – even if you are going to just slay enemies in an objective game, you need to do it in the context of the objective, i.e. by slaying high value targets or enemies trying for your objective.
When I play CTF, I go to the middle of the map and try to secure power weapons. Once I do that, I try to maintain control of the middle and take out enemy vehicles. I almost never go into the enemy base, or even across the midline of the map (unless, e.g., its to get a suicide touch on the flag to reset the timer). I don’t care how good your team is, if you don’t control the laser on Ragnarok CTF, you are not going to win.
I also get annoyed with people who play the objective by being solely defense. Yes, a good strategy likely includes having ONE person on your team stay near the base to solely play defense. I think controlling the middle of the map, and killing everyone before they get to your base works a whole lot better though. And if you die while contesting the middle of the map, guess where you respawn? Back at your base where you can play defense.
Point being: in my experience, objective games are won more regularly if everyone on the team focuses first on killing, and second on the objective. As you yourself point out, OP, there is no point in mindlessly rushing the flag (well, sometimes it works if its quick enough to catch them by surprise) with no concern for killing or dying. The better approach is to kill everyone you see (or attempt to), and once they are dead, grab the flag and make a run for it. KOH is probably the only objective game where team k/d doesn’t necessarily correlate with greater win rate. Still, my philosophy for objective games is that the winning team should not only win the objective, but also have the better team k/d, because they go hand-in-hand.
Yes, one or two players will have to focus on infiltrating the base and getting the flag out, but even they should focus on killing before mindlessly rushing it. Everyone else should focus solely on killing/map control. That is the formula for success in objective games. The best defense is a good offense. Why wait until the enemy is in your base to kill them? Doesn’t it make more sense to kill them before they get across the middle of the map.
Same goes for people who park the Mantis behind the base in the name of “defense.” He can claim he’s playing the objective by defending it, but not using the mantis to slay over the map generally is detrimental to team success. Why? Because the enemy mantis will most likely be running amok near the center of the map, and your team will be left largely helpless against it. Once the enemy pushes control over the middle of the map, all your “defense” will be for naught, because the slaying power that comes with map control (and with it, power weapon control) will simply overwhelm your teams’ best efforts at defense. Symetrically spawning power weapons/vehicles need to counter the enemy team’s weapons/vehicles, and central spawning (i.e. contested) power weapons vehicles need to be controlled by your team in order to assure success. Both of those things require SLAYING first and foremost, with secondary focus on the objective, only after the slaying has made it practicable to do so.
I wish I had some objective data/infographic to prove it, but I don’t. Still, I am highly confident in positing that the team that is more successful in controlling the center of the map in CTF wins 95% of the time.