Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Dealing With Class Rushes

In honor of the first title update to the Xbox version of The Orange Box since April 1st, 2008,I decided to throw together a small guide to help you all fight your way through a new trend that has emerged. That trend is Class Rushing.

This new Class Rushing isn't the one your Grandma used to play. This is a whole new beast that consumes an entire match and is completely unstoppable (except by the host.) While Valve "rushes" to fix this, there is only one thing to do: prepare yourself. So, without, further ado, I present to you a guide written to help you deal with Class Rushes.

The Scout Rush

This rush will haunt your dreams. The sound of pattering feet and "Doc, c'mon man!" will become a trigger of fear in your mind. Never again will you underestimate the power of a 2x capture speed multiplier.

But if you are a Scout who knows when to switch to Pistol, you may become a god. If you didn't even know you had a Pistol, immediately start dodging and don't stop. Your friends may wonder why you are hopping around in the Respawn Room, but you will be the better for never stopping the Dodge.

If an enemy Scout runs at you holding a Baseball Bat, take out yours as well and pray for a Critical Hit. If all else fails, hide and taunt until the match ends.

This Rush is best played on: Well and Granary, though it has its moments on Hydro.

The Soldier Rush

I am an excellent Soldier. I know all the best Rocket Jumps. I know when to switch to Shotgun; I know when to switch to Shovel. I crafted the Soldier into an art form through my controller, and yet...when you are in a Soldier Rush, your best bet is to jump/crouch everywhere and shoot at the ground near your enemies.

Sadly, this tactic is neither difficult or particularly inventive, but it works quite well. If you time your shots correctly, your screen will become filled with bloody body parts as your enemies explode. If not, your screen will be full of your own blood and guts.

This Rush is best played on:Gravel Pit and Granary because of excellent verticals.

The Pyro Rush

Take your Shotgun out and don't switch to Flamethrower unless your enemies can't see you. Why? Hit detection with the Flamethrower is bad, but a Shotgun blast from point blank can do 90 HP damage. Also, this is the only time in which a Pyro is guaranteed to not get a kill from afterburn damage.

No matter how ugly things become, do not attempt to W+M1 (or Forward+R1 on the Xbox.) The enemy Pyro will naturally backpedal and flame you in return. When moving forward, your flame is shorter. When moving backward, your enemy's flame is longer. So, yeah, you just died.

And always remember to taunt over your enemy when you kill them. Always.

This Rush is best played on:Dustbowl because the chokepoints keep it from becoming too chaotic.

The Demoman Rush

The grenade spam in this type of rush will bring you fond memories of Team Fortress Classic. But, in all honesty, this is the most fun you will have during a rush. The Demoman is so *cough*overpowered*cough* versatile that acting offensively and defensively as a team actually takes strategy.

It is possible that it will just degrade into spam, as aforementioned, but that is still visually entertaining. In fact, it reminds me a little of a screen from Meet the Demoman.

In this rush, the most important skill you can have is to know when to reload. If you completely waste your ammo (which happens more frequently than you might think), you better hope you aim your Bottle well.

This Rush is best played on: any map, even 2Fort and Hydro. It's that fun.

The Heavy Rush


When you play this rush, turn down your speakers or you might go deaf. The sound of Sasha spinning and shooting does not cease and if one person is calling a Medic, everyone else is too.

If you are unlucky enough to turn a corner and spot a few Heavies that are already spun up, the remainder of your life will look like you are entering Hyperspace.

Quite frankly, the number of bullets wizzing through the air during a Heavy rush is astounding. You will be taking damage continually, so be ready to run. But to dominate in a Heavy rush, you must know where to find ammo. Ammo is all you need to succeed (unless your aim is terrible.)

This Rush is best played on: Well because health and ammo packs litter the floor. In addition, capturing the final point feels epic.

The Engineer Rush

Prepare for stalemates. Do not attempt on Attack/Defend maps like Dustbowl and Gravel Pit.

Uh, that's all there is to say about Engineer rushes really.

This Rush is best played on: 2Fort becuase it nicely complements the general unplayability of the map.

The Sniper Rush

When you play in a match set to Sniper Rush, it will suddenly feel like Halo or Call of Duty.

The quest for team victory dissipates and is replaced with the search for individual glory. Snap shots are very possible as a headshot will kill anyone without a charge. Furthermore, the SMG feels like an Assault Rifle. If you didn't have to switch to your Kukri to melee, it would become just like those games.

As expected, this rush is a superb way of training to be a good Sniper. If you want to frequent servers like this, you should crank down your sensitivity. Doing so will have a major payoff.

Your best chance of starting a kill streak would be to snipe from unexpected places and to stay in motion. The less the enemy suspects, the better your chance of an easy shot. I could make a Weighted Companion Sniper joke, but this picture will suffice.

This Rush is best played on: 2Fort, obviously. But forget about capping the Intel. Think about blasting out the brains of the guy across the way instead.

The Medic Rush

This type is very odd. The Medic is the best support class, but when he can only support his own kind, things become quirky. You start to realize how powerful the Needle Gun is when you play this rush. At the same time, you wonder if the Ubercharge is really too useful.

With health everywhere, the commodity to watch is ammo, but that rarely becomes a problem. Even when depleted, the Bonesaw deals out a solid amount of damage. But no matter what you do to try to kill an enemy Medic, deaths will be rare. The Medigun heals too fast for long-term damage to be an option.

Therefore, to be effective, you must attack hard and fast. Chase the enemy to the edges of the map and remember to cut corners. It will take a bit, but eventually they will die.

This Rush is best played on: Well, Granary, or Hydro because playing it anywhere else creates bizarre balance issues.

The Spy Rush

Last, but certainly not least. The first thing to do is to forget your disguise. Your not fooling anyone.

Play a couple rounds of all-Spy and everyone will stop using their knifes. The Revolver is king.

When everyone decides to disguise, it is a mess. Chaos erupts because the Spy lacks a good Spychecking weapon. Everyone will want to be a Pyro, but they can't. Too bad.

If you ignore the loss of espionage, the game is still very fun, and it is teaching you to aim as well. I just wish we had The Ambassador.

This Rush is best played on: 2Fort. Carrying the Intel reveals which team you are on, creating an interesting side effect.


That's all for today! I hope you enjoyed the read!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Neat Tournament Ideas (With Posters)

By now (if you are someone serious enough about Team Fortress 2 Xbox 360 that you read a blog about it) you know that Valve has announced that a nice, simple title update/patch is coming to us very soon and has already been sent in for certification by Microsoft.

This update will include fixes to stop jackasses, excuse me, hackers, as well as a few hosting options that may have been inspired by one of my earlier articles. It is very exciting, mostly because I know it is true, and because it can no longer be slowed down by Valve.

These hosting options will bring the world of competitive Team Fortress 2 fully to our doorstep. We will be able to turn off random crits and damage spread, as well as set class limits. But now that these options are available, I would hate to see them wasted on just 6v6 matches.

So, to give the community a broader range of match/tournament ideas, I searched the internet, and here are two separate and awesome posters for tournaments that have happened over in the PC Team Fortress 2 community.

The first is for a Soldier and Medic only tournament. It is entirely 2v2 and with no critical hits or damage spread, it could become extremely intense and satisfying. Furthermore, it would make excellent use of the map Hydro, with quick rounds, but clear progression and defeat/victories.

The second is not based on a joke, believe it or not. Rather, it is a match style designed to introduce casual players to the competitive scene. It would be a 6v9 match where the casual team has one of each class and the other team is a clan. I think this would be a lot of fun and would be a great way for clans to practice.

Expect articles to come a bit more rapidly after this. I have been pretty busy lately, but things are clearing up. Also, any sign of movement from Valve rejuvenates my enthusiasm for Team Fortress 2.