This article was supposed to come out after the MyM update came out. Oh well.
While everyone is busy complaining about casual and competitive matchmaking in the Meet your Match update, they seem to have partially forgotten about the Meat VS Match side of things. This is actually pretty sad, because this is a second WAR! update, something people have kinda secretly been expecting for years. It’s no Engineer VS Spy update, but it’s a tad more balanced at least.
Not that it matters. This WAR! update isn’t all Soldiers and Demomen everywhere trying to kill each other, a Medic’s wet dream of having plenty of people to heal. This time round, you pick your side and any points you gain go towards your team. You can play ANY class as long as it’s in casual or competitive matchmaking, you’re not restricted to Heavy or Pyro. Since everything is done on Valve servers, it makes it a lot harder to farm points in general. There’s always the option of queuing up as a party and mowing down other teams in matchmaking, but since everyone’s on different teams and it’s all slowly being matchmade, it’s just not as effective as the bot-killing servers people set up before.
That being said, the fact that farming is much harder means this could have been a proper Heavy VS Pyro battle royale.
Of course, it’s obvious who will win. Heavy may be the face of Team Fortress 2, but Pyro is a way more popular class in every single way, even when it comes to fighting against them. Pyro is already winning, with 54% of the vote at the time of writing this article, and that gap is only going to widen. And why WOULD people vote for Heavy, the badass, lovable, caring strong man with a bad past and names for his guns? There’s a mumbling idiot who only succeeds through luck, spamming airblast and lazy writing cutaways who’s vying for everyone’s attention. Pyro wins not only on the needs-an-update-more factor, but also on the cute factor, the insanity factor, the mystery factor and the meme factor, all the factors that make one popular.
But on top of that, Pyro is also more hated of a character when it comes to playing as and against him. Pyro mains always scream that Pyro is underpowered and useless, while the people who play against him don’t always consider him overpowered (especially with the Phlog, it’s not overpowered but it 1. punishes you for team mates’ mistakes and 2. promotes the W+M1 style we all hate) but just find Pyro really annoying to play against. The damage and range of his abilities are inconsistent and reliant on so many unknown factors, airblast does whatever the hell it wants and most of Pyro’s combos leave no room for mistakes and escapes on either side.
In the mean time, Heavy is just about capable at doing his job. Or at least he would be if Valve would stop nerfing him constantly. Heavy is slow and cumbersome and he does lots of damage but only with a team. Unlike Pyro, who can flank to get kills, Heavy is wholly reliant on a Medic to keep him alive, since everyone wants to shoot at the guy with a mini gun, even when he is on his own. But Heavy will always be able to output a reasonable amount of damage and get kills. His problems are far less obvious than Pyro’s.
It’s clear that Pyro will win this war. Unless the TF2 team decide to rig it all again with a propaganda contest. But even then, Pyro just has far more sympathy than the gentle giant who escaped from a gulag when he was young.
I’m just thankful that they’ll update Heavy eventually, even when he inevitably loses this little war. The question is, when?