Dante – He Aint Heavy; He’s My Brother

Hello everyone! Dante here, sorry about the slow update rate recently, but I’ve recently entered the exciting world of paying employment and acquired a new PC, so my productivity is down a little.

As you may remember I did a post about my ideas for a new minigun for the heavy a while back, well I’ve thought about it for a while and I’ve eventually come up with a full set of unlocks, which I’d email to Valve if I new the address to send it to (any help anyone) but for now I’ll pop up here for you. I also have a few ideas for other classes at the end, some are mine, and some are just the best ones culled from other people (credit is given though). All the sordid details below the jump.

Minigun Unlock – Interceptor gun

What is it? – The result of the thought process in the original post, a gun that can hit rockets, grenades and stickies, causing them to explode prematurely, while firing this you cannot be healed by a medic, although he can heal you between bursts.

Why have it? – It’s for the Heavy who lacks a medic buddy (something Robin Walker specifically asked for in his original post. It helps the Heavy survive Demoman bombardment and rocket spamming, making him more durable and tactical, but isn’t as effective a blunt force option when paired with a medic. Plus the explosions would be awesome, and killing a soldier with his own rocket is hilarious for all concerned.

Shotgun Unlock – Uzi Twin Uzis

What is it? – It’s an Uzi, a fast firing, low damage submachine gun, and there’s two of them, because that’s way cooler. They do less damage than a Minigun, but require no windup time and don’t slow you down when firing.

Why have it? – Okay so this might take a little explanation. It isn’t the most inspiring or original idea (although I like to think it’s entertaining, but I think the Uzi(s) would make a great five point unlock. The reason is simple, when the heavy runs out of ammo he is forced to use his shotgun, a high damage, close quarters weapon. Now while this might seem in keeping with his class it really isn’t. Why? Because a shotgun is a low rate of fire ‘point and shoot’ weapon, whereas the Heavy is all about keeping the trigger down and spraying an area with bullets, two very different skill sets. The Uzi(s) mean that when a Heavy runs out of ammo (always panic inducing) he doesn’t have to take time to adjust to this new way of playing, making him more efficient and enjoyable until he gets his hands on more ammo. To aid this they don’t get several Minigun based drawbacks (slow speed and wind up) although they’re nowhere near as damaging, allowing the Heavy to defend himself as he runs for the ammo.

Fists Unlock – Boxing Gloves

What is it? – The gloves don’t do a whole lot of damage, but cause a significant amount of knockback when they connect. This was suggested by more people than I can count.

Why have this? – Because it’s hilarious of course. Oh, I’m sorry, you wanted a real reason? Because it allows a Heavy to sock someone in the face and flee, allowing him to escape easier and enhancing his survivability.

So that’s it, that’s my Heavy unlock pack, I figure everyone’ll want the gloves, but the Uzi(s) and the new Minigun are really style choices, which will hopefully be in line with the other packs.

Alright, now the extra bits, my favourite ideas for other class unlocks, culled from both the internet and the corners of my dark, disturbed mind.

Let’s take the ones I’ve nicked first.

Engineer Sentry Unlock – Trip Guns

What is it? – From Doctor Disaster, in the extremely long and in depth comment thread of this Pentadact post. He suggests a turret unlock in which a sentry’s three primary attributes (gun, knockback and rocket) are seperated, allowing the him to place three small sentries instead of one big one. Tweaking his version a little, the basic gun does the damage of a level two sentry but with no knockback, the knockback gun does the knockback of a level three sentry but the damage of a level one. And the rockets act just like the rockets on the level three, but by themselves, making them vulnerable to being hit while reloading. All three have health somewhere between the level one and two guns (playtest to balance) making them much easier to kill.

Why have it? – Because it makes a more tactically flexible engineer, allowing him think about his placement more rather than going for the same old points. It also makes him more active, as he can only crouch behind one sentry, but the delicacy of his sentries is offset by their numbers, as by the time you’ve destroyed all three he might well have the first up again.

Engineer Pistol Unlock – Laser Pointer

What is it? – The standout idea from a comprehensive list of unlockables suggested by ‘Master of Stealth’ and PC Gamer journalist Tom Francis over at his blog. It’s a laser pointer, when you click it the laser comes on and your sentry shoots where it’s pointing, this obviously doesn’t work if you haven’t built your sentry, or you’re out of sight of it. You’re essentially trading the your sentry’s ability to spot unexpected targets for the chance to direct it’s fire, picking targets and spy checking at will. If you put away the pointer it goes back to manual mode and (in a slight change from the original idea) right clicking fires the rockets of a level three sentry, because I get annoyed when it rockets one Scout and then gets mobbed by a bunch of Soldiers.

Why have it? – Because, as mentioned before, right now the engineer isn’t a very active class, you basically hole up behind your sentry, with a dispenser at your back, hitting it with your wrench. Now you get to actually wield it’s power yourself, butchering targets at will and cackling with delight. Of course all this makes you more vulnerable to spies (you’re more mobile, and a sentry won’t shoot a spy you don’t see) but this is offset by the ability to spy check with the sentry itself.

Now my own twisted ideas.

Soldier Rocket Unlock – WP Rockets

What is it – This new launcher (or rather new ammo) releases a cloud of deadly white phosphorus gas (working on the premise of horrific in real life = funny in TF2) when it lands, covering a significantly larger blast radius but doing less damage. It is also next to useless against buildings.

Why have it? – Something I thought about after career Soldier player Ludo remarked that he thought Demomen were better sentry killers, but Soldiers were better at taking out Snipers. This gives the Soldier an interesting tactical choice, whether to sacrifice his ability to destroy turrets completely in order to blanket an area with gas. The damage/radius ration would of course have to be fine tuned in order for this to work.

Soldier Spade Unlock – Air Superiority Spade

What is it? – A variation on a Pentadact suggestion, and on a similar note to the recently released Axestinguisher, this Spade always critical hits when the Soldier is rocket jumping (or immediately after landing) but seldom does otherwise.

Why have it? – Because fun things should always be encouraged, and I know some Soldiers (I’m looking at you Ludo) who just plain don’t rocket jump enough.

Spy Knife Unlock – Throwing Knife

What is it? – Okay, I plainly admit this is going to be really, really hard to balance, but it was such a fun idea I had to throw it out there. This knife does not stab as usual, but is instead thrown a short distance, it does however still kill instantly from behind. Before the cries of ‘overpowered!’ kick in, note that you only get one, and if you throw it, you either have to go pick it up or find an ammo dump. It would probably also be necessary to make it unusable from melee range.

Why have it? – It would add an interesting element to the Spy, taking someone down from distance makes it easier to escape, but makes quick multi-stabs next to impossible. It mostly helps those of us who find the Spy fun, but don’t have the ninja reflexes. And as one of those people, I have to say escaping is the hardest part.

Spy Disguise Kit Unlock – Scenery Disguise

What is it? – Okay, I just thought of this one right now, at one thirty in the morning (the best time for ideas dammit!). But I think it’s damn near brilliant. This is an alternate disguise kit that allows the Spy to disguise himself as a variety of objects from the TF2 scenery, including dispensers and even sentries. This requires no new art assets for the other team. The Spy’s team sees him as lurking behind a crude cardboard cutout of the object in question. The Spy can move while disguised, but obviously shouldn’t if people are watching.

Why have it? – Did you read the description man? How can you not want it? Imagine creeping up behind people dressed as a dispenser and then leaping on them in unawares! Not sold yet? How about the hilarity of an Engineer wrenching his Sentry only to discover it’s a Spy? Want balance? Well obviously you can’t move much without drawing attention, but this is offset by the fact that people are far less likely to Spy check scenery. Plus, this has the highest entertainment factor of any TF2 idea ever. Fact.

This is Dante, lurking behind you.


6 Responses to “Dante – He Aint Heavy; He’s My Brother”

  1. 1 Mike
    August 6, 2008 at 11:20 am

    Was the scenery disguise kit perhaps spawned from our talk about the Red Alert camo tanks previously? Either way, I WANT THAT!

  2. 2 Dante
    August 6, 2008 at 1:47 pm

    It might be actually, subconsciously. Either that or a fantastic spying cutscene in Medieval 2: Total War where a bush slowly sneaks into a castle.

  3. 3 Ludo
    August 6, 2008 at 5:34 pm

    All ideas to valve@valve.valve

    A clone army of Gabe Newells calmly await your submissions.

  4. 4 Mike
    August 7, 2008 at 3:31 pm

    Ahah! So THAT’S the real valve email!

  5. August 9, 2008 at 11:51 pm

    Hard to go wrong with something called an Air Superiority Spade.

    Unless you like acronyms.

  6. 6 Dante
    August 10, 2008 at 12:56 am

    I also imagine it makes a big tom and jerry frying pan like ‘spang!’ when it connects.

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