Chicken Soup for the Budding Medic:
A Healer's Guide
Updated for Gang Garrison 2.2Why become a Healer?
Every class, from the Overweights to the Runners, needs HP to survive. Out on the battlefield, there is no way to heal while fighting without walking back to the spawn. That's where the healer comes in. You are a mobile health unit, providing health and support for your team. Without a healer, Dirtbowl among other maps is nigh impossible to win. When to not be a Healer:
If your team already has 2 or more healers, even if they are incompetent
, DO NOT
become a healer. Doing this cripples your team. I don't care if you're the best Rambo Medic around, and your team won't either. Instead, Defend the Healers that are already in play.Spectrum of Medic Playstyles and their Definitions:
There are essentially 2 Medic Playstyles. Between these two extremes, endless possibilities. Fig. 1 - Spectrum of HealersThe Rambo Medic
This is the medic you see charging the frontlines, needles flying everywhere. He is not a support class, he is purely offensive. This medic does not heal his teamates unless he is himself injured and waiting, or needs to in order to survive. He may be harassing the defenses or attacking directly. Not a team player in the slightest. The Combat Medic
This medic is an offensive medic. He heals, but uses his syringe gun as well. He is a balance between healing and fighting, taking lives and saving them as well. He is somewhat of a team player. These guys are the biggest credit to their team, but easy to kill, being on the front line. The In-Betweens
This is anything in between Combat Medics and Devoted Medics. Somewhere in here lies the Perfect Medic. Medics should always be in this area, drifting towards the outer edges only when necessary, or if the other team is really that bad.The Devoted Medic
This medic follows one or two players around, being a personal medic of sorts. They do heal their teammates, but their focus is keeping their target alive. They will follow this target wherever he or she goes, often into the enemy front line. This medic is extremely dangerous because of his patient, and he usually moves about frantically. He is among the easiest medics to kill once his patient is dead. This medic is good for his team, but not as good as if he used his talents to keep his entire team healthy.The Medi-Buddy
This medic is the one you see hopelessly latched onto another player. Usually an Overweight, the medic will never heal another teammate until he dies. This medic usually is static, allowing easy counters with an Infiltrator, Firebug or Rifleman. These are generally the bottom tier of medics, being the newly converted and unskilled players. This strategy does have merits, but most of the time is like taking away 2 members of your team.
These styles should all be learned and integrated together. In one battle, a medic may cycle through all these types more than once. You must learn when to do what. For example, ctf maps can be won with the right side of the spectrum, while cp maps are easier with the left.What (not) to do:
The AutoRegen and You:
- If the combat is fierce, do not heal everyone to full HP. Heal them to about 1/2, or a tiny bit more, try to get everyone there. From then on, you can heal them to full hp. It is important especially in cp maps to keep as many people alive as possible.
- Don't follow your Medi-Buddy into his/her doom. If you know the situation is hopeless, it's OK to abandon them. Especially if you can escape.
- Always have an escape route. Medics are the best class at weaseling out of combat. Run, hide, run, hide, escape.
- Don't heal idiots. If there's a player that keeps blowing himself up and spamming the bubble, leave him to die. If there's a fullhealth Overweight spamming just ignore him.
- If there is a detonator near you that is harming his/herself, you may heal them to make your superburst charge faster. This is common in Dirtbowl and other setup timer maps. Use your judgement to decide whether they are griefing or helping you.
- Be conservative in combat. Even if you are going all-out, it's better to hide and regain some health and ammo. Medics have a surprisingly long range, similar to the detonator's.
- The great RebelINS once said, "Rambo Medic is just a pseudonym for people who think they're too good for other players." He is correct because a medic who heals his teammates is a much greater asset than one who kills enemies in their base. A good medic can help his team camp the enemy base, instead of stalking around while his teammates die.
A medic's AutoRegen is his most powerful weapon. In fact, it is arguably the best weapon in the game. Medics regenerate HP at 5 Hp/second. Although it seems like a small amount, it adds up, and is always on. Because of the health regeneration, the medic can take more damage than one would think. In fact, no matter what class you face, the longer the fight goes on, the greater the advantage of the medic.
The autoregen also makes the medic perfect at harassing. He can run in, deal damage guerrilla style, and retreat to safety. While he hides, his HP will regenerate, and he may attack again.What being a Medic Means to Your Enemy:
By healing your teamates, you are not only negating all the damage that your opponents have done, but you are building up a superburst. This makes you an extremely high-priority target. Most players, no matter the skill level, recognize this and will target you on site. The only class that has a higher priority is the Infiltrator, and only to certain players. You can use this to your advantage, however. If your teammates are preparing an assault, it can be a good idea to rush in to the enemies, and draw them out. The majority of players will chase a medic, assuming he is simply fleeing. Another way to utilize this is to attack from another angle. Say you have a Rocketman and a Detonator attempting a frontal attack. If you drop into a lower path and start to harass the enemies, they will target you, even though your teammates are much more dangerous. This works much better on experienced players, they fear the medic the most.Running Away, the Most Useful Skill in Gang Garrison:
Many people do not know when to run away. Some never run away. This is fine and dandy for a A/D+M1 Firebug, or an offensive Detonator, but it sets the whole team back when the medic dies. This is the first skill you should learn. The life of the medic is more important than any single member of the team.
The only exception to this rule are Intel Runners, but do not throw away your life easily. The medic's healthpool coupled with his autoregen makes him very good at escaping from many situations. Do not be afraid to go through the enemies, if it means you may escape.
A helpful tactic is to hide when you can, be it from a slow pursuer or any other event. Hide behind crates, and do not stay still for long. When you do hide, let your hp get to above 60
, so you may survive any single attack. Always know the terrain, and do not rule out going down dead ends. If a firebug is chasing you, you can lead him down a dead end, and jump over him to stall for time. This time means that your hp is rising.
The more people that chase you, the better. If you get most of the team to follow you, it is ok to go down fighting, as your team will be unhindered in their advance.
A major part of running away is the act of refilling your ammo. A soldier cannot fight with 0 rockets, just as a medic cannot with 0 needles. Run, hide, heal and get ammo.Battle Strategy:
The easiest way to get into battlemedicing is to dodge. The way I learned was by holding the fire button (M2) at around a 50 degree angle and dodging everything that came my way. The easiest class to learn this on is the rocketman, at midrange. Basically, you want to do a lot of damage while taking as little damage as possible.
Crates are your best friends (other than your medi-buddy of course!). If you can, lead your enemy to a crate. Because your projectiles have an arc, you can shoot over crates while taking cover behind it. You can also repeatedly jump over the crate to fight the enemy, besting even the greatest runners with prediction.
Never forget your ammo meter, lest ye run out of needles in battle. You have 40 needles to a clip, which are all loaded at once. Thus, you may still spam a few needles to spycheck, but be wary, for every shot you fire will leave you with one less shot to use for defense.
How to Heal:
- Mastering the Art of Prediction:
This section will help any class. Basically, watch other classes, play other classes. Note how they usually fight, close range and far range. Use your observations to help you in combat. A good way to do this is to play the Runner. The runners strength is getting in close and dodging, similarly to the medic. There is a different strategy for combating each class.
A shot dodged is a shot which needs to be reloaded. If you dodge long enough, the opponent will run out of ammo, and while he reloads you will heal.
- Fighting the Runner:
There are 2 ways to fight a Runner. You can get in close and dodge his shots, or run away at mid range. Both of these strategies will require predicting the runner's shots. You must constantly jump over the runner, making him change directions. If you fight up close, overlap sprites with him and move slightly to one side of him. This should be the side away from him. He will either shoot the other way, or shoot you. Either way, use the reload time to either move to the other side of him or jump. You must keep your needlegun on him while dodging his shots. The runner has 6 shots, always remember this. Take advantage of his reload, but keep in mind your own as well. Be careful, the runner loads only one shot at a time, and therefore reloads much faster than yourself. The Runner is a very fragile class.
- Fighting the Firebug:
There is only one way to fight the Firebug: you must run away. You can never best him in a fight. The flamethrower has 4 times the damage per second then that of the needlegun. Try to stay out of his range and backpeddle while shooting your needles at around a 45 to 60 degree angle, depending on the terrain and the distance. If you get cornered, jump over the flame column, and run the other way. His afterburn flames more than negate your autoregen, your hp will constantly go down. RUN. I can not stress this enough. ALWAYS run away. The firebug has the advantage over the healer as long as the healer is within his range. Therefore, if you stay out of the firebug's range, you will have a major advantage, and may escape unscathed. This usually calls for a z5 or z6. When running from a firebug, there are a few good tricks. One is to get him to chase you, and jump completely over him and the flame, escaping damage all together, or taking minimal afterburn. Run the other way. The best way, however, is to find a ramp or staircase. Classes at the firebug's speed or higher (this includes you) bounce down the ramps. Get him to chase you. and wait near the top of the stairs. When he comes bounding after you, move forward under his bounce.
The firebug's gun overheats. This is amazing news for a medic. Use and abuse this time, since it will take much longer for him to reload than for you to. He will likely either retreat, allowing you to do the same, or keep on you and risk dying. Keep in mind, your speed is 1.09, and the Firebug's is 1.1
- Fighting the Rocketman:
Mid range. Stay at mid range. Stay at midrange, and on the ground. Only jump to avoid his rockets, and if you can avoid them without jumping, then do it. This fight is about patience. Keep him at mid range, and keep dodging. There are a few good rocketmen who actually aim, these will be harder. Be especially wary of airshots, and don't just spam needles. Only fire if you have a shot. You want to get rid of this guy as fast as possible. He has 4 rockets, and reloads much faster than yourself.
- Fighting the Overweight:
Try not to fight him. If you do realize that you have essentially a more accurate version of his gun, although at the cost of damage and ammo.He will kill you in less than a second at close range. Stay back, and pepper him with needles. Back out of range to heal. If he takes out his sandwich, go right up next to him. Overlap your sprites and shoot him with needles. Out of instinct he will shoot at you as soon as he finishes eating. Use this to your advantage. As soon as the sandwich goes down, jump over him. You will get 60 or so damage on him, while he couldn't fight back. You can also dance around the overweight, but only on the lesser players. This fight is extremely difficult because you can only do a maximum 120 damage in a full clip. The Overweight's 200 hp will let him last, and he will likely eat while you reload. His overheat recharges while he eats. Be very careful, and try to survive at all costs.
- Fighting the Detonator:
Get in as close as possible and follow his every movement. Keep your needles on him. This way, all the damage he does to you will also damage himself. If it's a camping detonator with a stickycarpet, he is probably defenseless. If the detonator is an offensive player, don't use crates, and don't stay at long or mid range. He (or She) will destroy you in no time at all. The demoman can only shoot 3 stickies before reloading. Take advantage of this by rushing him after 2. Save your clip for this opening, you will get in many more shots.
- Fighting the Healer:
This fight is stupid. It's completely based on patience and aim. Try to trick him, the same way for any other class. A good trick is to jump over him, and keep your cursor on him. Try to avoid this fight, simply because it takes forever, and it wastes your time, his time, and everybody else's time. If the Healer has a medi-buddy, just run. Not only is it a mirror battle, but due to your clips, has been noted to take 3 or 4 minutes for a single confrontation.
- Fighting the Constructor:
Treat him like a gimped runner. He's slower, deals much less damage, and doesn't have a double jump. His redeeming feature is the autogun, which many say is overpowered. Medics are very good at taking out poorly placed autoguns. This is because of the arc in his needles. You can arc over crates, arc up a staircase, arc up a wall; the possibilities are nearly limitless. Almost any autogun can be taken out by a medic without any loss of health. Sometimes it's better to rush the autogun, if you're pressed for time, or being pursued. Go over the autogun and keep jumping straight up and down. If the constructor is near his autogun, see if you can arc your needles into him, it usually causes him to pursue you. Take him out before the autogun. He is very similar to the runner, and his weapon shows it. He has 8 shots, and reloads them one at a time. He is extremely fragile because of this.
- Fighting the Infiltrator:
Half of fighting an Infiltrator is finding said Infiltrator. The Healer has one of the fastest firing weapons, and because of this is a good spychecker. However, you do have an upwards of 40 needles. Try to remain conservative in your spychecking, but do indeed spycheck. Short bursts are the way to go. If you are alone, there is no excuse, unless you are hiding. Keep the gun arced at around 45-60 degrees while moving forward. Check in between crates, behind them, and in corners. There are numerous failspies to practice on. Once you find him, give chase. Jump and fire. Medics are also good at dealing with failed backstabs. As soon as you see him, get in close and fire. He likely won't be able to get away after he has finished his stab. Fighting a good Infiltrator, one who uses the revolver, is much harder. It takes about 6 bullets to kill you. This is also the size of the clip. If you live through these shots, he has to reload all of his shots at once. Take advantage of this, your regen will get you up. Stay at midrange and dodge his shots. He will go down very quickly. Medics are very prone to facestabs, so beware. Beware the airstab! Do not stand near ledges for extended periods of time.
- Fighting the Rifleman:
At far range, you must hide. Get him to miss, run to the next hiding spot. The best way to fight him is at close range, as many riflemen cannot fight at close range. Be unpredictable, make him miss. Most riflemen panic at close range. If you can't get close, find a crate and wait it out. The Rifleman deals a maximum of 85 damage. Be extremely careful, and also note that his minimum damage is 35. Take advantage of his slowed speed while scoped, but don't let him charge up a 85 damage shot, as this makes you completely vulnerable.
- Fighting the Quote/Curly:
Use the usual backpeddle while shooting technique until they pull up a bubble shield. Keep firing, but now jump towards it. That's right towards it. Jump over the Q/C and keep your cursor on it. Backpeddle away. Repeat as necessary. This class is built on rushing in and pinning you against a wall. Don't let that happen. Also, if you are being chased, it's blades will push you away, helping you escape.His blades decrease in power the longer he fires them, take advantage of this, but also take note that a bubble shield will stop you in your tracks. Quote and Curly have infinite blades. What isn't unlimited is the damage. The blades start off powerful and quickly decrease in damage. When faced with Quote or Curly, get them to waste their blades, and try to only take low-damage hits.
Fig. 2 - The Wonders of Jumping.Who to Heal, A Prioritized List:
- Never, ever stand still.This is one of the golden rules of medicing. Stop, and you will be stabbed. You, as a medic are the prime target of spies.
- Instead, play some runner, and take some dancing lessons. Yes, you must dance when you heal. This disrupts snipers shooting at you, and if you do it properly, you can dodge many projectiles. Also, jumping gives you a better angle to heal your teammates, giving you much more options in limited space.
- Don't be afraid to tank some bullets for your medi-buddy. Especially if you're fighting an Overweight. Doing this will harm you, but it will take that damage away from your teammate, possibly saving his life. Your health regenerates, remember.
- One of the most effective techniques is to have 2 medics. Have one in the front of the assault, keeping people alive while the back medic heals people to full.
If combat is heated, do not heal people to full. Bring them up to a decent amount of health (about 60-70%), and save as many people as possible.
- Spycheck. Even though you are healing, and therefore cannot fire your gun, look both ways often to reveal passively invisible spies. This means careless spies, and spies trying to stab. Gunspinning while healing is a popular way to do this.
- Be like the kids in the grocery store. You know, the ones that run around at the speed of sound frantically. Be fast and erratic in your movements, this will make it harder to be facestabbed, and sniped as well.
- Keep on the move. A stationary medic is a target for facestabs, airstabs, snipes, anything. Even a simple moving back and forth, or jumping up and down will do wonders to prolonging your life.
- Fellow Healers who are on Fire at Less than Half HP. While you heal the medic, his fires will extinguish and you will save his life. After you get him back to a safe amount of hp, the rest of the team can enjoy 2 separate sources of health.
- Anyone on the Verge of Death. If someone is in the red, bring them up to at least half. Remember, your job is to save lives, not just one life. People on fire get increased priority. Intel Runners may be in this category, but the most important anybody is the front line.
- The Front Line. Yeah, these guys are more important than the Intel Runners. If the front line breaks, your team gets pushed back. If the Intel Runner dies, someone can pick up the Intel. You don't want to save an Intel Runner only to find the enemy is in your base.
- People on Fire. Healing a burning teammate extinguishes the fire. As long as they stay on fire, their HP drains. Which puts more pressure on you later.
- Intel Runners. But only if he is weakened. A full health Intel Runner should never, ever be healed when anyone of a higher priority is injured.
- People who are weakened. If there's nobody about to die, bring everybody to full health.
- Your Medi-Buddy. If you have one.
« Last Edit: April 17, 2010, 10:52:48 am by Chicken Soup »
Superbursting 101:What is the superburst?
The superburst is what is shown in the meter on the right bottom corner of the screen. Once it fills up, you can unleash the beast by pressing M1 and M2 simultaneously. This effect will last for 8 seconds. Doing this disables your needlegun. Why would I want to use that?
When in superburst mode, you are impervious to damage. As soon as you begin to heal someone, they are impervious as well. This had many major strategic uses.
Who to Superburst:
- Breaking the Front Line. With a well timed superburst, you can break the enemy's front line, enabling your team to advance, unhindered.
- Breaking a Sentry Nest. This is extremely important. Sometimes, sentry nests are impassable, due to sheer numbers. Superbursting can enable you to completely demolish the enemy stronghold.
- Overcoming a Tough Foe(s). Heavymedic combo giving you trouble? Especially in a cp map, Superbursts can be used to end a stalemate. While generally a waste to take out one person, depending on respawn times, can be very useful.
- Saving Someone's Life. Also a situational tactic, the superburst can save a teammate's life. Especially good if in the enemy base and surrounded.
- Saving your own Life. Saving your life can be imperative to your team's success. If you have a superburst in the waiting, you should never die. Even if you are alone, You should use it to survive.
- Making Somone Drop the Intel. Partyfags ruining your game? Juice 'em up and watch them drop the intel. Make sure you have a serious teammate who will take it back to the base, though.
Superbursting Tips and Tricks:
- The Runner: Occasionally a good target. He has the speed and maneuverability to wreck things. This is also bad, as he can move out of range, or break the line of fire. 48 damage pointblank is nice too.
- The Firebug: Without a doubt, the best target for destruction. If he's competent, he'll run in and spread his flames like wildfire. If he's really good, the medics will be the prime target. Really good because even after the superburst, he's fast, and the flames continue to damage. Short range, however.
- The Rocketman: Not really a good target. His ammo makes him a bad choice, as does his speed. He is a good target, due to destruction and the fact that he will take no splash damage while in this mode.
- The Overweight: A decent target. This is entirely situational. It is best to only use it when he is about to die, as he will already be engaged in combat. Also good for combating firebug and runner rushes.
- The Detonator: A decent target. He can cause a lot of pain, and is extremely flexible in use. However, his damage has been severely reduced in the current edition of Gang Garrison, making him a worse choice. A notable feature is that he can activate nitroboosts and become what I like to call a "Nitronator." This will propel both you and him very quickly, but is much weaker than it previously was.
- The Healer: Just don't do it. Terrible DPS, and most medics are not very competent at all. The only time this should be done is to save one of your lives.
- The Constructor: Pretty bad target. He's a gimped runner. Damage is decent at best, and is pretty slow. The only practical use would be to get behind the enemy line to place a sentry, but there are better ways. Again, a last resort.
- The Infiltrator: If he's a revolver packin' spy, an excellent target. The revolver's range is extremely long, and each bullet does 25 damage. It has a good rate of fire, and is unexpected. If the infiltrator doesn't even know he has a revolver, don't waste it. It's better to just superburst yourself and run past.
- The Rifleman: The worst target. Superbursting him is pointless. He keeps the same rate of fire, and the same playstyle. Most Riflemen won't even be near the battle anyways. Last resort.
- The Quote/Curly: A very good target. Like the firebug, a quick, short range damage dealer. Q/C is especially good for clearing out areas and pushing forward, due to the King's Sword's knockback. This should be your second choice.
Fig. 3 - Superburst Vs. RocketspamBeing a Credit to Your Team:
- Learn to count the 8 seconds, or know about how long it lasts, and get out of there. A good thing is to start retreating right before it ends, especially in a conflicted no man's land.
- Take into account who is competent and who isn't. A competent Rocketman will most often accomplish much more than an incompetent Overweight.
- Signal the attack before superbursting. Basically, Superburst after the target has taken damage, and started his attack. This makes the damage last longer, and takes advantage of the fact that you still heal while bursting.
- You still heal during the superburst. If there's no enemies, heal your teammates.
- The superburst automatically gets rid of fire. The Superburst immediately cancels out afterburn. If theres a firebug causing chaos within your ranks, simply change your superburst target around to nullify his flames.
- Superbursts aren't only for one person. They can be shifted around while in play. This is good when fighting on 2 fronts.
- Superburst charging is slow. However, you can nearly double the speed at which you charge by healing allies who are under half health. This can be abused by a detonator who gets to half health and continues to weaken himself. Your healing will just about keep pace with his self-infliction.
- Being invulnerable does not exempt you or your patient from knockback. Try to walk in front of your patient while superbursting. This will ensure that you receive all of the knockback, allowing your patient to make up for lost time.
Fig. 4 - A Circle of HealingQuestions and Answers:
- Don't Die. This sounds obvious, but the longer you live, the more health you can give out to your teammates. You can also save up a superburst to be used whenever the need should arise.
- Don't Neglect Your Teammates. There are many people who constantly spam . Although it may seem extremely annoying, healing them is the right thing to do. The most important reasoning behind this is that many people who feel their medics are not doing a good enough job will switch to medic, thereby handicapping the team's offensive prowess.
- Don't Go Rambo. It's one thing to defend yourself, but every second spent firing needles is a second that someone isn't getting healed, a second that your superburst isn't charging. This is especially important during firefights, Your meager 30 DPS won't help your teammates as much as the health they receive.
- Dance. Master dancing, and you will master the art of annoying the heck out of everyone. I have gotten many killstreaks just by dancing and spamming needles. The most important part of this is avoiding damage, not dealing it. By avoiding damage, any that you do take should be able to be autohealed.
- Know the Terrain. This goes for any class, but knowing how to get around is important for a medic's defense, as well as that of his teammates. Knowing the terrain will allow you to combat effectively, retreat when the need arises, and run to the aid of your teammates. Jump off cliffs, go through enemy fire, get to your teammates. A few bullets will not kill you, and your health regeneration will bring you back up.
This section is for any and all comments posted in this topic that demand a response from me. This is not a public guide, so I will only paste my own words in response.
Things to come:
Knowing what to do when
Pictures to break the wall of text
If it turns out being short, can be posted elsewhere. Also trying not to rip Volo's guide.
« Last Edit: April 15, 2010, 11:26:26 pm by Chicken Soup »