The Love and War Update handed us some neat stuff, like a neat-o short film, server-wide conga events, parachutes, and bread. Also with the update shipped three (now two) serious nerfs for three classes. This, I feel, was the weakest part of the update. They were not thought out well, and were in some ways too strong, and in others too unnecessary in a game with bigger problems.
Let’s get demoman out of the way. Spuf has probably read ten thousand words on the controversial nerf, so I’m going to make this one short. The sticky launcher needed a nerf, but this was not the best way by any means. It rendered demo very frustrating to play, even when doing well, and made him far too team dependent. The fact that the damage nerf also effected buildings made the change all the more asinine.
Out of all three, the heavy nerf was probably the least thought out change. First of all, how is anyone supposed to know that the minigun now has ramp up, aside from actually reading the change notes? There is no visual nor auditory indication of any sort. Also, the change promotes just holding down the trigger, even when there is nothing there, just so you don’t have to suffer the ramp up, which resets on not firing, instead of not spinning. In fact, the nerf would be more tolerable if it worked with spinning rather than firing.
My main gripe with heavy is that, in a comp setting as well as most pubs, heavy has one viable loadout. One. Most all the other choices are pointless beyond whimsy. Why not do something with those, instead of tacking on another limit to a static, already limited class demanding of proper skills and abilities to master?
Lastly, Pyro’s axtinguisher. The fact that it (and all other back-related weaponry) have a wider crit radius than the backburner is getting a little insulting by now. Also, the big issue with the axtinguisher was how well it preforms with the degreaser, which deserves more looking into. Now straight flaming or using the backscratcher tends to be more effective damage-wise. The other issue is that as it was pyro had only three melees in major use, including the axtinguisher. Another fact is that sniper, the exact opposite of a CQC class, is allowed to have a crit-on-demand weapon similar to the axtinguisher, and that is apparently perfectly fine.
I feel that these nerfs were poorly done, and should be looked further into and refined, or replaced with better solutions.