In my previous article, I focused on explaining the basics of communication. Today, I want to focus on listening.
Listening to your team-mates, which is obviously an important yet self-explanatory aspect of the game, is what I won’t be going to be looking at in detail. What I do want to talk about is actual in-game sound.
In games like Counter-Strike, sound can make the difference between winning and losing, due to the emphasis on footsteps, reloading and other actions that can give away your position just from the sound these actions make.
In TF2, their is much less emphasis on things like footsteps and reloading, however, there are some specific things you can look out for that can help you pull off some unexpected, and often, rewarding plays.
First off, let’s take a look at some of the easier and most commonly noticed sounds that the average player will almost always listen out for and will respond to:
- Friendly or enemy players calling for MEDIC!
- An obnoxiously loud Heavy that is spinning and firing his Minigun.
- The ominous beeping sound of an Enginner’s Sentry Gun.
- The firing of a Sniper’s Rifle that can easily be heard across from half of the map’s length.
- A Medic’s automatic voice response when he deploys an Ubercharge.
- A Medic’s automatic voice response when his Ubercharge is ready to be deployed.
- The lightning-like buzzing sound of a critical shot.
- The general firing of any weapon, particularly a Soldier’s Rocket-launcher, a Pyro’s Flamethrower, a Medic’s Needle-gun and Demoman’s Sticky and Grenade Launcher.
- The continuous thudding sound of a Demoman setting up a Sticky Trap.
- Someone getting Head-shot or Back-stabbed.
- A Dispenser dispensing health and ammo to nearby players.
- And, of course, the unmissable munching of a Heavy eating his Sandvich.
Now, here is a list of some of the less commonly listened-out for sounds that not too many players are aware of or do not often respond to or make use of:
- The Coaking and Decloaking of a Spy.
- The Reloading sound of any weapon, particularly a Demoman’s Sticky Launcher or a Scout’s Scattergun.
- The Sticky Jump of a Demoman, or a Rocket Jump of a Soldier (usually signaled by a player-hurt sound and explosion combined).
- The bell-like clinging of a Demoman’s Grenades as they rebound off surfaces.
- The humming sound of a Control Point that is being captured.
- The volatile sounds that a Control Point produces when being blocked or is cooling-down.
- The occasional and automatic voice response of any player that passes over a Control Point that their team owns. (GET ON THE POINT YOU DIPSH-)
Finally, here is a list of sounds that only a small group of competitive players make regular use of, and are very situational and difficult to listen out for:
- Footsteps (particularly of a Scout or Spy)
- Garage doors opening and closing. (Can be heard through walls)
- The subtle buzz of a Medic’s fully-charged Medigun. (Hint: your friendly Medic’s fully-charged Medigun will mask enemy Medic’s Medigun, and vice versa. Switch to the Ubersaw or Needle-gun for a second or two to remove that mask and listen out. This is especially effective on a map like Gravelpit, where knowing the enemy Medic’s position is vital to a successful defense or attack.)
- Ammo-crates or dropped weapons being picked up by another player (same sound as the Resupply cabinet being used by another player. Side-note: Health-packs don’t trigger a sound when picked up by other players)
- Footsteps on metallic surfaces like crates, ramps and catwalks.
- Distinguishing classes based on the speed of their footsteps.
And that’s pretty much it, hope you find something useful in there to make use of.