With so many of the classes having such firepower and influence on the field, I can understand how Medic can be an easy class to ignore. But the beauty of the Medic is his ability through the wonders of medical science to unlock and maximise the potential of his patient, and by extension, his team. The first time I played Team Fortress 2, Medic was the first class I selected, being drawn to the weird and wonderful concept of being purely supportive to the team. A gun that was only capable of helping others both baffled and fascinated me. I’ve always enjoyed being a team player so to have it built into a dedicated class excited me. Especially since TF2 was only the second online multiplayer game I’d ever played at this point.
It’s fun being at the spearhead of an attack, sure, but there’s something incredibly rewarding about being the catalyst of a team push. Keeping everyone topped up with health, rapidly switching between targets, doing leaps and bounds to avoid all sorts of incoming projectiles. It’s great fun that keeps you on your toes at all times. Nervously eyeing the corner of the screen, watching the ubercharge bar slowly crawling upwards, resisting the temptation to cockily ubersaw an enemy in the face for that sweet 25%. Leaning on the knowledge that when that bar hits 100%, you’ll have the capacity to unleash hell on the enemy without them being able to lay a finger on you or your death-dealing patient.
When the Medic update hit, a new healing compadre arrived with a bang. 300% more bang, specifically. The Kritzkrieg. Although, every time I read that name, all I can think of is this Krieg. Yes, this fearsome friend (Or should I say fiend?) transforms the blissful sanctuary of the regular ubercharge into a fizzing, hissing, crit-spitting demon of a weapon for eight seconds. The catch being that the likely demise of your enemies is also applicable to you and your patient with no invulnerability to bathe in. But that can make the moments leading up to and using the uber that more exciting… A true “do-or-die” moment that can change the tide of battle. Providing you “do” instead of “die”.
Oh yeah, and there’s also the Quick-Fix and Vaccinator and… Ehhhhh… I find them too finicky, niche or situational. Especially when I play as aggressively as I do. The Quick-Fix’s jump mechanic has landed me in more trouble than it’s ever gotten me out of and the Vaccinator is more trouble than it’s worth. I COULD cycle like a maniac through the damage types every couple of seconds, but why would I when I can easily back away from any potential threat and heal my patient (or kill the pursuer) from afar with the gorgeous Crusader’s Crossbow? I can’t stress how much my enjoyment of Medic went up when I first tried and fell in love with the crossbow after initially rolling my eyes upon its release.
The ability to two-shot Snipers taking potshots at you or your team, the ability to deal proper damage to offensive classes and the insane healing you can do with this thing. Landing that syringe on a teammate in the critical moment of a fight is unspeakably satisfying, it’s a feeling of agency so rarely experienced in multiplayer. The most you can do for a distant teammate as any other class is empathise with their imminent doom, but hitting the shot and watching the upsurge in your teammate as they realise they’ve got a fighting chance, only to come out on top makes you feel like some benevolent hero… But hey, insane scientist is still pretty good, right?