You remember all those times where I would whine and bitch and moan that I have really awful aim? Remember how I said that I am legitimately bad at TF2 and video games in general? Would you forgive me if I said I may have been lying slightly? Of course you would, you love me. There ARE things I am good at in TF2, but the issue I have is that most of the things I am good at aren’t particularly useful in normal gameplay. The main thing? Syringe gun aim.
In the last few weeks, I have had some AMAZING Medic frags. For example, while waiting for the other team for our first 4v4 match (they forfeited in the end), I 1v1’d the Soldier and beat him in a close combat Syringe Gun Shotgun battle. While messing around with Sham1 and Vintage Keith on a low gravity Mario server, I outright beat a Direct Hit Soldier in another 1v1 fight twice, after which he proclaimed that I was “lucky”. Then after my first official 4v4 match I got three kills in a row. It’s not luck; scenarios like this happen every time I play TF2. All I can do is put this down to the two things I am good at: dodging and aiming syringes (unless it’s the Crusader’s Crossbow). But this puts me in a really awkward situation.
The Syringe Gun is a tough one. It’s not accurate at all. It has no burst damage, it fires syringes that travel in an arc, it’s not really good at anything. There’s only two things worse than a Syringe Gun: SMGs and flamethrowers. The whole reason the Syringe Gun exists is so that Medics have something they can hold and shoot while running away screaming in terror as the entire enemy team charges towards them. A last, desperate scream for survival. Syringe Guns, whether it’s stock, the Blutsauger or the Overdose, are so weak and inaccurate, you might as well not bother.
It gets worse though. The people who get in your face and are the biggest threat are Scouts and Soldiers and the occasional Demoman. With a Scout, you’re fucked, no matter what you do, but when you’re trapped and are going to die, with other classes, there’s a chance to take them out with you. But if you’re going to charge into the enemy Demoman, using a Syringe Gun of any sort is a bad idea when you can use the UBERSAW and possibly get full Uber or something. Heck, using the Bonesaw would be more effective.
We have this unusual situation that Medic’s primary weapons are all useless unless they offer some sort of utility. That’s why the Crossbow is so awesome, not because you can pretend to be a Sniper, but you can pretend to be a Sniper who heals. And no one uses the Overdose for damage, they use it for speed.
What does all this mean? It means that my Syringe Gun aim is really 99% useless. There’s little point even bothering with your primary, unless you’re sniping heals. Crossbow aim though relies on completely different mechanics. You’re leading one shot, not 40 shots, with less of an arc and a faster projectile. Comparing Crossbows and Syringe Guns is like comparing the Shotgun with the Flare Gun: nigh impossible.
Normally, I’d say “fine, whatever, time to go back to dodging rockets”, but the fact that the one skill I have in TF2 is nigh obsolete bothers me. Unfortunately, I can’t do anything, nor do I want to do anything, to make Medics use their primary weapons more. No, what we should do is give Medic-like weapons to other classes. Soldiers and Snipers already have access to regenerating health and EVERYONE has a secondary form of healing, so why not explore rapid-fire low-damage projectile weapons? Think about it. Nailgun for Scout. Syringe-based Minigun for Heavy. It’d be fun. And I’d finally be able to play something other than Medic.