Ever since Valve released the Axtinguisher, weapon combos have become a huge part of Team Fortress 2. From the Sandman/Cleaver to the Jarate/Bushwacka, Valve has released a number of weapons obviously designed to go together, and for that reason they do so very well. But sometimes there are weapons whose synergies are not so obvious, who were clearly built for widely different roles, and yet somehow they can combine to create a lethal combo to the keen player who can see untapped potential. Here are a few I’ve discovered throughout the years.

1. Beggars Bazooka / Righteous Bison

The Beggar’s is a great gun, I have loads of fun with it. It’s two major downsides are that it’s incredibly easy to run out of ammo and it makes targeting ranged enemies impossible without a bit of luck. Well, the Bison does not require ammo and fires it’s lasers in a straight unending line, giving you that ranged weapon option. This loadout actually works extremely well in MvM also.

2. Overdose / Vita-Saw

The Overdose increases your speed based on your Ubercharge percentage. The Vita-Saw lets you respawn with up to 20% Uber. Combine those and you get a 2% speed boost fresh out of spawn, letting you reach the front lines at about the same speed as a Powerjack Pyro. This is also just enough to outpace base-speed classes if you are backpedaling.

3. Backburner / Manmelter

Tired of losing a quarter of your ammunition just to extinguish a teammate?
Tired of losing a quarter of your ammunition just to extinguish a teammate?

The Manmelter is traditionally considered to have synergy with the Phlogistinator and nothing else. This is because the Phlog doesn’t permit you to extinguish teammates, so the Manmelter covers that niche. But even though the Backburner does allow you to airblast teammates, it comes with a hefty ammo cost. The manmelter can solve this problem, and its inability to crit is somewhat counteracted by the Backburner being able to crit on its own.

4. Sticky Jumper / Persian Persuader

I got a Collector's Sticky Jumper for Smissmas!
I got a Collector’s Sticky Jumper for Smissmas!

I know, I’ve mentioned this loadout before. Several times. But I can’t stress how the demoman basically becomes the undisputed teleporter of the entire battlefield, capable of zipping around the whole map and choosing every encounter, positioning himself so he has the advantage. The Grenade Launcher contains 4 highly damaging shots and the Persuader is a sword, giving you extended melee range and the health from the dropped weapon of anyone you kill. You can have a presence at short, medium, and long range, regain health from almost anything and escape with ease when the odds turn against you. When you run out of pipes, jump back to the resupply locker and be back on the frontlines in less than a minute. Also (I finally figured this out!) because of the Sticky Jumper’s doubled reserve clip, every category of ammo pickup gives you double ammunition, which translates to doubled health. A dropped weapon gives 44 health, a large ammo kit 88. That’s a nice chunk of health back.

TF2 has so many different weapons, it’s inevitable that some things are going to synergize better than Valve expected. Or maybe they intended some of these, I don’t know. But it is fun to run around using loadouts that may be less common than the tried-and-true classics but still effective in their own way.