The Drunken Scotsman: trying to main Demoman
In Team Fortress 2, it looks like I’m maining Demoman (in as much as anyone mains anything in TF2). It’s the class I enjoy most. And I have got better. I’ve now got to the stage where if I find myself on a server of predominantly f2p players with probably about 20 or so total TF2 hours play between them I can do reasonably well. In other words I have now effectively become good enough to be able to take candy from a baby. Result.
I’ve been practicing my aim on tr_walkway (a training map) and sticky jumping (this is where you explode one of your sticky bombs at your feet and use the explosive impetus to move forward/upwards). My sticky jumping is still random and I’m not very confident doing it. I don’t feel 100% in control, haven’t got the technique quite.
I’ve also carried on trying to develop mindset, as I’ve written earlier. I’ve read various tips and watched videos, and I found one of the most useful ones on a thread on the Steam TF2 forum. Here someone who felt they had plateaued in their development was asking for help. Someone replied with
1) Every time you die spend your respawn time thinking about why you died and what mistakes you made
2) Make note of your class weaknesses and play with those in mind, try to say with players who can help you compensate. A Demoman is weakest in close combat. Therefore it makes sense to stay close to classes who are better here. I sometimes now focus on making myself hold myself back, in line with a Pyro or a Soldier (who can also protect against scouts). In return as Pyro I keep an eye out for my Demomen allies.
3) Think, think, think about what is going on, where you are and what everyone else is doing, don’t be rushed, don’t rush in. I suppose this counts as developing gamesense. As Demoman, this means I’ve been looking for choke points, trying to spot where opponents might come from, thinking about tricky sticky trap placement. And sticky placement to help the team as well, to protect the medic, to protect the advancing frontline (grenades help here too) and to defend it.
All this can be seen as pretty basic, but it’s the kind of stuff that can suddenly ‘click’ and make you go, ‘Oh yeah, duh.’ Things that you pick up in bits while you’re playing but don’t quite put together as a proper game plan and focus on.
I know that I’m still a fairly conservative and defensive player, I can’t dodge for toffee, my aim is dire and I die too much. I spend most of my time cheerfully at the bottom of the points table on my regular servers. But it’s all a start and it keeps me busy.