My very first article here was about the Solemn Vow, and now, over 100 articles later, I feel it’s time to revisit this glorious, semi-overpowered weapon. I’m feeling so sentimental about it that I’m even using the original photo from that article. In the original article, I spent most of my time going over the game play elements of it, how it allowed the user to make more informed decisions about whether to run away or not. Today, I want to talk about some different aspects of this weapon.
The Solemn Vow to me has sentimental value. I managed to craft one of them out of melee and medic tokens on the day of the Uber Update. I also managed to token craft all the other new Medic weapons, but since we had so few at the time, it was pretty easy. Didn’t have the same luck with the Vaccinator though, as I crafted 4 Kritzkriegs in a row, one of which I still have. Why did I token craft the Vow when I managed to craft an Overdose normally? Because the recipe asked for 8 Jarates. Makes you wonder why. The Medic originally used urine samples from all the other classes to do this? Mercenary piss has some sort of magical property? Or maybe, just maybe, Valve had intended greater things for the Solemn Vow.
Let’s take a break and talk about the threads with the most posts in the Medic sub-forum. The Morbid Marotte: Spy’s head as a variant for the Solemn Vow. Unfortunately, the guys who tried to make it were beaten to it by someone on Gamebanana, but it was the sort of idea that appealed to literally everyone who saw the thread. Everyone loved it and it made so much sense. The Medic sub-forum is circle-jerky at the best of times, but in this thread, it was a utopia of people working together towards a brilliant idea. What has this got to do with anything? Well, I feel that Valve missed a huge opportunity to make something incredibly unique: the Solemn Spy.
One of the most commented things from the Meet the Medic video was the Spy’s head in the fridge. “Kill me”, people say. “Later”, I am expected to reply. We all know that Spies can already see enemies’ health as well as that of their team mates. We all know that Medic has a decapitated but still alive Spy head in his fridge. So why didn’t Valve put 2 and 2 together and make the Solemn Vow into a literal Spy’s head? Actually, they could have done loads of interesting things with this.
Every time you whack something, the Spy’s head says ‘Ow’. This is a very simple thing to do, you’d just have to give the Solemn Vow its own hit sounds (it currently uses those for the Wrench, I think).
While idle, the Spy could make comments about you, or at the very least laugh when you’re backstabbed and die. The Eyelander whispers ‘Headssss’ to you while you run around slaughtering people with your overly large sword, your shield and your grenade launcher, so this is already possible.
The Spy could actually call out enemy health instead of you seeing it like normal. He’d call out whether the enemy is overhealed, healthy, injured, badly injured or near death, and you’d have to keep an ear out for what he’s saying. This would actually give the Solemn Vow more skill indexing, since you’d need to listen rather than having that information being given to you readily and as clear as day.
It would have jigglebones. Jigglebones are awesome.
Thing is, Valve missed a huge opportunity to do something incredibly different and incredibly unique. They’ve done living creatures as weapons before, like Snarks and the Barnacle Gun, so a Spy’s head wouldn’t be that hard, right? Even just a reskin, in which the Spy’s head just says ‘Ow’ would be highly amusing. Surely it’s not too violent! I mean, we’ve got decapitations and dead fish and people whacking others with Spy arms, so why not?
As long as, no matter what you do, you stop Snipers from getting this weapon in Randomizer.