Everything is argued about and scrutinized in Team Fortress 2. Whether it’s new hats, new weapons, new maps, old maps, old weapons, old hats or the classes themselves, they get picked over by us ravenous bastards. Even how the classes are classified and laid out is a problem to some people.
There is actually a genuine argument to be had with class classification. Does each class actually fit in its given classification? Most wouldn’t really give it more than a passing thought, but there are issues with the current classification system.
Let’s take Demoman as an example. Like Heavy and Engineer, Demoman is really good at defense. But Demoman is also AMAZINGLY good at offense. If you need a heavily guarded sentry nest taken down, a Demoman with an Ubercharge is the number 1 method of doing so. So calling Demoman a defensive class is only a half-truth. That would be absolutely fine with an older, more experienced player like me, someone who knows how Demoman works (even if he IS my least played class) but a newbie will just see Demoman and assume he’s only really good for defending things. And with weapons like the Sticky Bomb Launcher, it’s easy to see newbies doing exactly that.
You’ve got the exact same problem with Pyro. Pyro is labelled as an offensive class but it is really good at stalling enemy Ubercharges and protecting Engineers with their sentries. Not to mention all the Spy-checking, which is an incredibly defensive job. And what about Sniper and Spy? They don’t SEEM like very supportive classes, especially since Spies like to work alone and Snipers only really support when they throw piss at people.
The current setup of Offense, Defense, Support simply doesn’t work very well. So I’ve got a better idea.
Introducing the Power, Assassin and Support roles.
Please excuse my Minecraft graphics, Gun Mettle has forced me to put everything as low as possible.
Under Power, we have the three classes that deal all the damage. Soldier, Demoman, Heavy. It is these guys’ job to deal large amounts of damage in big lumps, while also being strong enough to take a lot of damage on their own. Defense and offense mean nothing here, it’s all about how much power you have.
Assassin classes are classes designed to assassinate single targets and take out the weaklings of a team. Scout, Spy and Sniper all excel at picking out an enemy and killing them. While Snipers take out their targets from a distance, Spies and Scouts specialise in getting behind the enemy, flanking them and tearing people new assholes. Ideally, they take out the most important person on the enemy team so their own Power classes can continue on their destructive path.
Support does what it says on the tin. While Medics do the most obvious form of support by healing team mates, Engineers and Pyros actually do a lot of supporting that players simply don’t notice. Engineers provide forward support in the form of teleporters, while also providing defensive support with sentry guns and dispensers, giving team mates somewhere to retreat to so they can heal up safely. Pyros provide support by stalling the enemy team and defending your own team’s Power classes and Medic, while also hindering enemy Pick classes.
I feel this new system helps people understand what each class does far better than the current system. And what’s even better about it is that it sticks to the old 3x3x3 system, three types, three classes per type, without confusing everyone.
Of course, there could still be improvements, especially for the names, but I can’t think of any.