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A fast-talking kid from Boston with a penchant for baseball, the Scout is the fastest of all classes. His speed and ability to double jump will leave slower opponents struggling to keep up. This, coupled with his Scattergun, makes the Scout ideal at hit and run tactics, allowing him to inflict massive close-range damage before dashing away to safety. The Scout can also equip his trusty Sandman to stun opponents with long-range baseballs, equip his Bonk! Atomic Punch to make a getaway without taking damage, or drink his Crit-a-Cola to take out unaware opponents in seconds.
The Scout is an ideal choice if you need an objective completed quickly, as he can capture control points and push carts twice as fast as any other class. His petite stature and swiftness also make him useful at harassing opponents and providing distractions. With the addition of Mad Milk, the Scout now has a larger role and can provide additional support to the team.
A crazed patriot from the heart of America, the Soldier is the bread and butter general assault unit of the team. Although he's one of the easier to understand classes, he is far from the weakest. Equipped with his Rocket Launcher and 200 Hit Points to spare, the Soldier is a highly versatile class for both offensive and defensive roles, and a great starter class to get familiar with the game.
The Soldier is also well known for his spectacular rocket jump. In defiance of all good sense and judgment, the Soldier can shoot a rocket at his feet to launch himself skyward at the cost of some health. This ability allows the Soldier to pop up in unexpected places and reach areas off-limits even to the Scout's double-jump.
A mumbling pyromaniac of indeterminate origin, the Pyro has a burning fondness for fire and all things fire-related. Wielding a homemade Flamethrower, the Pyro can set opponents aflame, whittling their health away over time with the ensuing afterburn damage. The Pyro also wears an asbestos-lined suit that prevents any afterburn on the Pyro. Due to the short range of the Flamethrower, the Pyro relies heavily on ambush tactics to catch opponents off-guard. One of the primary roles of the Pyro is the vital task of Spy-checking; a puff of flame will ignite both Cloaked and Disguised Spies, and the Pyro will then proceed to hunt them down with the same mercy and goodwill shown to all of its opponents—which is to say, none.
Though categorized as an offensive class, the Pyro can also be a useful asset in defense, protecting friendly Sentry Guns from Spies and sending entire attacking teams retreating for health. In addition, the Pyro can use its compression blast ability to reflect enemy projectiles, extinguish burning teammates, separate a Medic from its target, and disorient enemies by pushing them into the air. Pyros can also ignite a friendly Sniper's Huntsman arrow so it can ignite an enemy on a hit, or remove Sappers from an Engineer's Buildings using a Homewrecker.
There is much debate about whether the Pyro is a female or a male. Other classes' domination responses (Spy, Sniper, Scout, Soldier, Demoman, and Engineer) that refer to this speculation appear to be insulting the Pyro's fighting capability. The flowery purse located near its locker in the spawn room of 2Fort, as well as the Pyro's Madame Dixie hat and humiliation stance both being quite feminine, have only served to further fan speculation. Additionally, the Pyro has been referred to as both "he" and "she" by Valve, including on the official blog. A prime example of this was in the UI introduced after the Mac update, which referred to the Pyro as either a he or a she in the challenge dialogue box and alternated randomly between the two. The Xbox 360 manual for Team Fortress 2 uses the male pronoun to describe the Pyro. Also, the base description of the Vintage Merryweather reads "Pyro wears this in tribute to the many firefighters that have perished trying to quell his Flames."
A scrumpy-swilling drunken demolitions expert from the Scottish Highlands, the Demoman (real name Tavish DeGroot) is one of the more versatile members of the team. Though his weapons lack pinpoint long-range accuracy, the Demoman is a powerful (if unpredictable) asset, and can hold his own in just about any situation. He is a master of explosives, excelling at indirect, mid-range combat. Armed with his Grenade Launcher and Stickybombs, the Demoman uses his only good eye and knowledge of the surrounding environment for well-timed detonations that send enemies skyward.
The Demoman excels at swift disassembly; he can bounce his grenades in creative angles to wreak havoc on enemy Sentry Gun emplacements while remaining safely out of sight. His Stickybombs are a perfect tool for area denial, and are effective in keeping opponents away from any carts, control points and Intelligence cases he deems off-limits.
A towering hulk of a man hailing from the USSR, the Heavy, also known as Heavy Weapons Guy, is the largest, and possibly most dangerous class in Team Fortress 2. Boasting the highest stamina and biggest gun; the Heavy is no easy pushover. His firepower is highly impressive, allowing him to mow down any and all opponents in mere seconds; be they babies, cowards, or tiny baby-men. However, he does not come without downsides - revving up and firing his Minigun brings his already-unimpressive speed down to a snail's pace; making him an open, and very large, target for any opponent outside his range of fire. Despite his imposing stature, the Heavy's slow gait means he must often rely upon his teammates to lend a helping hand: with a Medic by his side and a well coordinated team controlling his flanks, he is a true force to be reckoned with. Alongside decimating entire teams; the Heavy is able to provide further support for his comrades with an oft-required health boost via his Sandvich; the tastiest Health kit in the game.
The Heavy is arguably the 'face' of Team Fortress 2. He appears most prominently on box-art and promotional materials, as well as starring in the very first Meet the Team video and appearing in all further videos to date. Additionally, he also appears in Poker Night at the Inventory as the Team Fortress 2 representative; regaling many stories and fun facts that are as of now, not canonical.
A soft-spoken, amiable Texan with a knack for all things mechanical, the Engineer (real name: Dell Conagher) chooses to construct and maintain Buildings that benefit the team rather than engage in much direct combat. The Engineer's various gadgets include the Sentry Gun, an automated turret that fires at any enemy in range, the Dispenser, a device that replenishes the health and ammo of nearby teammates and Teleporters that quickly transport his teammates to the fray.
However, the Engineer's ingenious devices are under constant threat from explosives and devious enemy Spies; a good Engineer must keep his gear under a watchful eye and in good repair at all times. When the Engineer needs to get his hands dirty, his trio of generic, yet capable weapons, combined with the assistance of his helpful hardware, make him more than capable of holding his own in a fight.
The Engineer is also capable of hauling buildings he has already constructed and re-deploying them in new locations, at the cost of a lower footspeed and being unable to use a weapon while carrying them. Buildings are vulnerable during the hauling process, as they will be destroyed if the Engineer is killed; they also need some time to re-deploy after being hauled.
A Teutonic man of medicine with a tenuous adherence to medical ethics, the Medic is nonetheless the primary healing class of the team. Although the Medic does not possess the best arsenal for direct combat, he can typically still be found near the front-lines, healing wounded teammates while trying to stay out of trouble. When his Medi Gun or Kritzkrieg is focused on a teammate, they will quickly regain health. Unharmed teammates will have their health buffed beyond the normal limit. While healing, the Medic's ÜberCharge bar will fill up until the weapon begins to crackle, at which point he can then activate a deadly charge that either makes himself and an ally temporarily invulnerable or gives his patient 100% Crit shots for up to 8 seconds.
The Medic is capable of regenerating health over time; the longer a Medic stays out of combat, the faster his health will recover. A damaged Medic will regenerate health at a rate of 3 HP per second, which scales up over the following ten seconds to a maximum of 6 HP per second (though carrying the Blutsauger reduces the regeneration rate from 3–6 to 1–4, and the Medieval Medic item set will raise it to 4-7).
A rugged and ready crack shot from the Australian outback, the Sniper prefers to pick his targets off from a distance with his lethal headshot ability. Taking to hiding in elevated or hard-to-see spots, the Sniper can pick off slower classes like the Heavy with ease. The Sniper is also ideal for eliminating enemy Medics, giving his team a chance to advance into enemy territory and turn the tide of the battle.
While the Sniper tends to isolate himself from the frontlines, the Huntsman allows him to move up the field, laying down suppressive volleys of arrows while his ancient and mysterious Jarate powers can increase damage dealt against his foes by himself and teammates alike.
Hailing from an indeterminate region of France, the Spy is a fan of sharp suits, even sharper knives and relies on stealth and trickery to aid the team. Using his unique array of cloaking watches, he can render himself invisible or even fake his own death, leaving unaware opponents off-guard. His Disguise Kit lets him take on the form of any class, allowing him to blend in while behind enemy lines before literally stabbing his unsuspecting 'teammates' in the back. In fact, a swift backstab from behind with the Spy's trusty Knife will take out any foe in a single hit.
In addition to being able to assassinate key enemies quickly and efficiently, the Spy is great against the Engineer. Using his Sappers, he can disable the Engineer's buildings -- slowly draining their health until they are destroyed unless removed by an Engineer or a Pyro wielding a Homewrecker.
Another common target for the Spy is the Heavy. While a Heavy has his Minigun spun up, he moves at a speed slower than normal -- this slower move speed along with the distraction of combat makes for an easy opportunity for a backstab.