The weapons that have been in the game since it came out in 2007. The oldest things in your backpack. Every player in the game has used them. Could there really be something you don’t know about them at this point? Maybe. Here are some things I didn’t know about several greytext weapons for a surprisingly long time.
1-Sticky Launcher nuances: Holding down right-click lets you charge up a sticky and shoot it really far. You already knew that? Shucks. How about that destroyed (not detonated) stickies leave 1 ammo you can pick up (or extinguish yourself, in the case of the Persian Persuader?) Knew that too? What about the fact that holding down right-click lets you spam stickies and detonate them as quickly as possible? I didn’t learn that one until a few days ago. Even if you knew all of these, it’s some of the earliest surprise discoveries new players make. The Stickybomb Launcher seems like such a basic weapon, but it has a surprising amount of tricks up its sleeve.
2- Rockets don’t fire straight ahead: Here’s another one vets know but probably didn’t early in their career. Rockets do not fire straight ahead. There’s actually a very slight angle, either left or right depending on what you have your viewmodels set to. The best way to see this is to point the center of your crosshair at a corner, and watch as the rockets you fire zip around the corner. This is a great way to hit targets who can’t hit you back. For a time you could toggle viewmodels in-game, which was an amazing soldier buff as he could fire around corners at will, and I honestly wish it were back. That only makes sentries easier to defeat.
By the way, if you want your rocket launcher to fire straight ahead, equip the Original.
3- Pyro’s shotgun has a hidden downside: Sure looks like all four shotgun-toting classes have the same gun, doesn’t it? (The same great gun.) Their shotguns all share identical stats, a single strange/name-tagged shotgun works for everybody, and the TF2 Wiki doesn’t list them as separate weapons. Yet next time you play Pyro, notice what happens when you switch to shotgun. For some reason, he pumps the forend before you can start firing, something that doesn’t happen with any other class. This happens because every class actually uses a different shotgun according to the game files, which is why they all have separate taunts associated with them. I can only assume the bug is related to this somehow.
4- The sapper is considered a building: Engineers are not actually the only class that can erect buildings. The Spy sapper is considered a building with 100 health by the game, which is why it takes damage like a building; Critical wrenches will not deal triple damage, instead just the normal 65 melee damage. The homewrecker deals double damage to buildings, 130, which is why it removes sappers in one hit. This caused some great glitches in the heyday, the most famous of which I’ve covered in other articles.
5- You can Uber multiple people without extra drain: One thing Medics quickly learn is that Ubercharging multiple teammates comes at a hefty price; your Ubercharge drains twice as fast. This encourages pocketing a single person to get maximum output from your hard-earned Uber, flashing teammates to extinguish and such only when necessary. But one thing I didn’t know for the longest time was that this drain only occurs when two people are Ubered at the exact same time. When you remove the Ubercharging healbeam from somebody, the Uber lingers for about a second, making it possible to have 2+ Ubered teammates at once (not counting yourself) if you can switch fast enough. But if you remove the Uber from the first guy, wait a second, and then Uber the next guy, you will incur no drainage penalties.
With so many unlocks in the game, we tend to forget that there are always new things to learn about our classic stock weapons. Let me know if there are any surprising things you didn’t know about stock weapons, TF2 is so versatile that at its core there are always new things to find out.