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While playing a game of 4v4 with a mix of humans and bots, I was under heavy attack when my bot allies said "Drop a beacon, John" (Or similar, I forget their exact words).

What on earth does that mean? How do I drop a beacon? What will that do?

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In this article under Beacon section you will see that you can drop beacon on minimap (Alt + H by default). You may need to send some message like "Go" or similar to make AI send army there.

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