Being the Medic

There’s no doubt that the Medic is a very important class to have on your team. They keep bulky classes healed, give them the advantage in fights, and build up the devastating uber or kruber that can break a defense or stop a charge dead in its tracks. Everyone wants a medic on their team. But actually playing the Medic seems to be another matter entirely. Despite the medic’s undeniable usefulness, even in the hands of an amateur, the simple fact is that a lot of people don’t want to play the medic. Sure, they’ll play it for the sake of the team, but they’ll be quick to anger, refuse to heal people who don’t explicitly thank them in chat, and generally think the world owes them for bothering to play medic. Not the signs of someone enjoying themselves. Although possibly the signs of someone about to enjoy themselves at someone else’s expense

So where’s the disconnect? If the Medic is so useful, why do so many people dislike playing the class so much?


Team Fortress 2 is, after all, a first person SHOOTER. And as the Medic, you’re going to be doing very little shooting. This can get a little boring for some people, because in the end they don’t want to hop around while keeping the medigun beam on a Heavy, they want to be shooting people- even if the latter is less useful to the team. It’s the same reason that some Medics seem so eager to go rambo all of a sudden- “ze hurting is more rewarding than ze healing” as the Medic himself would say.

Priority Target

People shoot for the Medic first. It’s just a fact. In higher level games like PUGs or even just serious servers with semi-comp players this is even more apparent. Once I ran into a Soldier using the Direct Hit who purposely rocket jumped right into the opposing team’s Medic’s face over and over to hit him with the DH up close and finish him with the Equaliser, not caring if he died in the process. That’s about the level of determination people have in regards to your death if you’re a Medic. There’s good reason for it- even if you’re not stopping them from killing someone, you’re building an uber, so they want you dead before it’s ready. Even if it is ready, they want to force you to waste it before you get to the rest of the team to minimize the damage. The only time people WON’T shoot you before your target is if you don’t let them, or if they’re a Spy or Sniper going for the easy target. After a while, this starts to get old, after the tenth time you get hit from behind with a rocket and then finished off before you turn around.

You Don’t Control How Well You Do

Here’s the one that scares people out of playing Medic on a losing team time and time again. As the Medic, your main concern most of the time is staying alive while keeping your team alive. If you find a good Medic buddy, you can go on a rampage and get stuff done while keeping your buddy alive. If your team is bad, you’ll often end up hopping from buddy to buddy as they’re gunned down, leaving you with nothing to show for it but a scattergun to the teeth after you run out of meatshields. And yet, the difference between you rocketing to the top of the scoreboard and rotting at the bottom is often independent of your skill. The fact is, without good players to support, the Medic just won’t do well.

You Need a Lot of Rescuing

Closely related to the last point, the sad truth is that a lot of time your team is going to be a pack of morons, and you need to be the one to get them in shape. But as the Medic, you’re not going to stand up in a fight with most other classes most of the time. So your Medic buddy, or just any random person you’re healing at the time, needs to kill them for you. And if they can’t, you’ll die. Over and over again. This is also one of the top sources of rage for Medics; a Medic buddy who can’t or won’t protect them. If they die, expect the buddy to get the blame. Often, even if it’s not their fault, if the Medic’s mad enough.

However, I enjoy playing Medic. It’s hard to see why, with all of that against it, but let’s look at the good parts of playing the Medic.

A Different Skillset

I’ll be honest; I’m a bad shot. I miss plenty of the time, and my habit of playing on servers with high ping doesn’t exactly help matters. My aim is less than superb, and I’m not exactly a pro at getting the range for confrontations right either. But playing the Medic, that starts to matter less, and my abilities to find cover, dodge shots, keep an eye out for enemies, and gauge the safeness of an area matters more.

Help From Others

Let’s be honest- if a Pyro had your back and he got attacked by a Scout, there’s a good chance you won’t save him. But if a Medic that was healing you was, you’d at least try to save him if you knew. And while a Heavy sometimes throws a sandvich to a Soldier, most of the time it’s the Medic who gets a free lunch.

Helping Your Team

Even with the odd disconnect of you feeling powerless and like you aren’t helping, if you compare how a team is doing before and after the addition of a Medic, it’s pretty obvious how much of an effect the Medic has. Lots of fights start turning against the other team, and the heaviest hitters on the Medic’s teams start killing people more, and being shot down while running for health less.

So yes, playing the Medic is frustrating. You can feel powerless, die with full uber, and get killed constantly despite your best efforts. But it’s all worth it when you keep a Heavy alive as he mows down an entire team, or uber a Pyro and watch the world burn.

written by SirMax


0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
12 years ago

Wow that article is insaning accurate. Describes the reasons why medic annoys me to the tee!! But medic is a vital part of the team and does take its own set of skills in order to be effective.

However Razer I have to disagree with you…. I still believe it is the easiest class in the game to play.

12 years ago

No problem brother…. Glad I could help 😛

12 years ago

“However Razer I have to disagree with you…. I still believe it is the easiest class in the game to play.”

I think it is the easiest class for someone to just pick up randomly and play, but in order to play it well, in order to master the class as only people like Kynnel and the top top medics have, you need to be smart, you need ultimate gamesense and you need experience.
It may be the easiest class for people to play randomly, but the difference between a good medic and a bad medic is visible if you know where to look.

I think that medic is the most difficult class to rate skill wise since many people play medic on the same level, with only a few outstanding characters, this is because many medics undervalue the potential of mastering the class.

12 years ago

I totally agree with Andy. Most of the tf2 classes are designed to be easy to play, except in cases like with the sniper, where some skill is needed, but other than that most of them are pretty easy to just play and be at least semi descent with. The difference comes in with experience I believe. As with anything in life, the more you do it, the better you become at it. To just come back to the whole point about medics being easy to play etc. As a person who loves the medic, in both playing them and just being healed by one. I just have to say, yes anyone can play medic, but to really impact the game and help push your team into a winning position, you need to know how to play the medic well! And like beetle said, the difference between a skilled medic and a mediocre one is pretty obvious!
But before I start writing an essay, I just wan to say, nice article! I enjoyed it and completely agreed with all that was said! I too hope that this will inspire a few other peeps to give ze Medic a bit of a go! OKTOBERFEST!

12 years ago

Well I have dedicated a lot of time to medic…. I find it a lot easier to play the medic class as opposed to say soldier. Maybe this has to do with my game style than any thing else. Maybe the article is correct in saying that the easiest class may be player specific.

However a new medic is very noticable in pick up or clan game… but that learning curve to being fairly decent is not that long. Since this seems to revolve more around heal order/priority and positioning/map knowledge. After that comes your movement and your ability to identify danger and dodge damage and this is what separates the top medics (like Andy…. can only comment on local players) from the rest of us.

Maybe the the moral of the story is for us “medics” to realize that there is still room to improve our games and stop moaning about being stuck on medic all the time? There is a reason why people want us to play medic all the time. Take it as a compliment and use that time to learn and adjust things we might be doing wrong. (More a note to myself than anything else, sorry just had an Epiphany)

12 years ago

However Razer I have to disagree with you…. I still believe it is the easiest class in the game to play.

WHAT?! Medic imo is hard to play, for me personally, it’s the demoman that’s easy. Demoman and Soldier. Point and click ftw 😀

12 years ago


12 years ago

To be honest, Medic is the hardest clas to play in my opinion.
Anyone, i mean ANYONE, can aim. Anyone can predict. That’s just practise.
Medic is a whole other ball game, replacing aim with positioning.
Having had Beetle as our medic for a while, no offense to lawnmower who is a ROXORZ medic, but the difference between a division 1 medic and just… a medic, is very apparent.
Having a good medic is the backbone of the team, and knowing you’ll get your heals when you need it allows you to push confidently.
South African TF2 has the tendency of assigning medic to the “fat kid” or the least skilled player in the eyes of the team. This is RETARDED.
Your medic should be calling, setting the pace of your teams push and ultimately, staying the hell alive.
The difference between a medic and a PROMEDIC is very apparent when watching ETF2L or ESEA replays of medics.

10 years ago

Great read, just one thing i realized that i did not find in this guide is that:

When healing and topping up, keep your eye on your ubercharge meter, if you heal someone and the charge does not increase , your target is a spy and should be smoked asap.

Great way to become a spy hunter in my opinion 😛

10 years ago

Great Guide.
Thanks Razerfox for all your awesome posts.
Inspired me into playing more medic, which is now my main class. xP

Tell us what you think, please comment.x