1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Engineer Basics

Discussion in 'Strategy Guides' started by Capella, Sep 15, 2008.

  1. Capella

    Capella New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,420
    Likes Received:
    0
    TF2 Engineer Basics: This turned out longer than I planned, so feel free to stop after reading Basic how to do it. If I missed any "Basic" obvisous thing let me know and I will update.

    Your purpose:

    You are the Road block, you slow down the enemy and buy time for your team to respond to threats. Usually the other team will be able to take down your Sentry Gun once they are aware of its location, make them pay dearly in the process. You also transport your team mates from the spawn point to the battle front. Dispense ammo, and healing, and metal* to your team. This works well for both defense and offense.

    You have:
    1) The ability to build or destroy one sentry gun (SG), and to upgrade it twice to level 3
    2) The ability to build or destroy one teleport entrance and exit, and to upgrade it twice to level 3.
    3) The ability to build or destroy one dispenser, and to upgrade it twice to level 3.
    4) A wrench that can be used to speed building, repair things, and as a club
    5) A hand gun, with 12 rounds, which has fast reload and is good at longer distances, but does less damage
    6) A shot gun, with 6 rounds which does reasonable damage close up, and has slow reload
    7) A whole lot of spare ammo for your hand gun and shot gun, unlike the other classes, fire away!
    8) Metal reserves, max 200, these are generally hard to replace, and are used to build and repair. Hoard them.

    Basic how to do it:

    1) Build a teleport entrance before you leave the spawn area! Do not build the teleport entrance on a ramp, it will block your team mates coming up the ramp, and be hard to get on without jumping onto it. There are a few exceptions on building teleport entrances right away, but they are map specific. (Warpath bring one map)

    2) Leave the spawn with max metal (200), metal is a scarce resource, dont leave home without it. It is well worth the time to run back and get more after building a teleport entrance.

    3) When you arrive at your chosen build spot**, in general, build a dispenser first, this gives you more metal, heals and gives ammo to your team. Beat on the dispenser with your wrench to speed building it.

    4) Build a Sentry Gun (SG), be aware that if you are building an SG, you also probably expect to be attacked, therefore keep metal in reserve to repair the SG, 100 in metal or more is safe. Rebuilding an SG that is taken down by the enemy is far more costly.

    5) Dont upgrade your SG unless you have metal to repair it above the construction cost, again keep 100 metal or more in reserve. (see number 4)

    6) Build a Transporter Exit, you can do this before the SG if the area is more or less safe and there is metal to spare.

    7) In picking your spot, watch where other Engineers build and see how well their guns survive, build where you think you can survive the longest and be of most value to your teams goals, this takes some experience, so dont rush it, finding the best build spot will come in time.

    8) Stay with your stuff to protect it from spies sappers, bang on the equipment with your wrench to remove the sapper, and repair, under heavy battle conditions bang continually (no pun intended) on the SG, hopefully you built the rest of your stuff out of the SGs direct fire area and that stuff will need less repair.

    9) Move with the battle flow, you want to be very near the front most of the time, wherever the front moves too. Keep in mind the time to build, and metal resources, some spots fail on one or more of these items. When re-spawn points change, move your teleport entrance and exit.

    10) Know the map and what metal is available and where, if there is more than one Engi inthe same area then expect to have less metal and adjust.


    **Better build spots in general:
    a) Create an offensive or defensive bottleneck and protect*** your SG and other buildings.
    b) Make your dispenser and teleport exit available to your team mates, and are out of fire so they can recharge in relative safety. If you build on a second floor for best SG targeting, and your team is fighting on the first floor, your dispenser isnt going to help them much.


    ***Protect:

    - from Spies, try to keep your back to a wall, if a spy saps your stuff, kill the spy first and/or call for help, save the SG first, everything else is cheaper to rebuild

    - from Heavies, Demos and Solders, dont setup in direct frontal line of fire, make them come to you around a corner, usually against a right angle wall is better for protection, try to be behind your gun, use it as a shield, this is called an attended SG, bang on the SG to keep it healed (this will use up metal, so have a reserve), against a solder and heavy you should in most cases to survive a direct assault even if they are Ubered. Demos are your bane with their sticky bombs, note it takes three sticky bombs to do your level 3 SG in.

    - from Pyros, you need to setup far enough back from a corner that the SG can track and kill a pyro before they reach you, in most cases a level 3 SG is the best bet for defending from solo Pyros, the SG rockets end it fast, if the Pyro reaches you, you will most likely die first, and the SG will get the Pyro and survive until you return to repair it, or it is destroyed by something else.

    - from Snipers Snipers enjoy shooting Engineer buildings from long range, thus dont setup with an open exposure unless you have no other choice, a level 3 SG can take a sniper hit, but two or three and the gun goes down unless repaired. Use the SG for a shield from the sniper, you will see the sniper dot light up on the SG, be prepared to do repairs.


    Helpful hints:

    Spread out, dont build next to another Engineer, one Demo will take you both out. This also slows spies a bit from sapping all the buildings in one pass.

    It takes time to build out and upgrade everything, keep this in mind when picking a spot to allow enough time and metal to finish as needed to support that spot, especially if the front if moving towards you.

    You can use your hand gun to shoot sticky bombs away from your buildings. This requires aim, but can work, if you have time.

    Pick up dropped weapons for metal, pick up ammo boxes.

    Getting yelled at; everyone gets yelled at, you will either be right or wrong based on how well you survive your choices, learn from it. Improve for the next time around.

    *Dont leech metal from another engineers dispenser, unless you ask, leeching on another Engineers dispenser is pretty nasty, they are building and have to maintain a metal reserve too. Build your dispenser first, and then you dont have this issue.

    Dont take an Engineer slot if you dont plan to make good use of it, usually teams will have 2 engineers max for offense, if you take a slot and dont use it, you cut 50% of the teams Engineer support. Same goes for Medic. Play Solder, Demo, or Heavy instead.

    You can act as a build helper for another Engi to get one SG/dispenser/teleport set up faster, then work on a second set.

    On defense, a good Pyro on your team will help you by blowing sticky bombs away from your stuff and spy checking. Although not so common, this combo works very well.

    On maps where teleports are not needed much, like 2fort, they can be used as alarms, set them up in remote hall ways and when they are damaged or sapped you know the enemy is there, a spy cant resist sapping a teleport, you would think they would learn (well OK a good spy can). Also on 2Fort teleports can be used to block stairs, this can be annoying to your own team, but the enemy usually has to take time to remove or jump over them while in battle, buying your team some extra time.

    Dispensers can be used to block door and archways, your team can run though them, the enemy cannot, nor can you, so build them with which side you want to be stuck on in mind. You can also use them as steps to climb up on things, to get on one without a small step get a small running start and jump/crouch, at the same time.

    Things real quiet? Not a spy in sight? Move forward, or if you expect the front to come to you, move yourself up and use your hand gun or shot gun. You re-spawn a lot faster than your buildings build, and they will continue to work without you, and your hand/shoot gun can add some limited damage at the front.

    Multiple SGs and push back. 2 or more SGs will prevent an enemy player from moving forward, while this means some grouping on SGs, it is very effective at forcing the enemy to deploy multiple Ubers at one time to counter it, that buys your team time and may be worth the effort.

    Maps:

    Map details are up to each players style of play, here are some of my observations:

    Warpath is not real Engineer friendly by design. There is little cover for buildings, and even less metal around. Your team needs your dispenser near them. On this map Ubers are the most common way to move forward, and thus SGs drop quickly, make them pay for it in lost time and resources. One stage. (CP)

    Badwater, an Engineers dream, have fun here on both defense and offense, on this map controlling the roof is a big thing, and Engineers can play a big role in this on defense, watch others on where to setup. On offense teleports from the first spawn point are important through the third capture point. One stage. (PL)

    Goldrush, is another fun Engineer map. Lots of little cubby holes and metal for building things. Three stages, each very different. (PL) For offense teleports are big, and protecting your team from being overrun and pushed back.

    Gravel Pit, basically a left side and right side attended SG on point C goes a long way towards winning for defense. Point B is somewhat defendable, Point A meh. For offense teleports are big, and protecting your team from being overrun and pushed back. One stage. (CP)

    dustbowl, another fun Engineer map, many choke points at which to build guns. Three stages, each very different. For offense teleports are big, and protecting your team from being overrun and pushed back. Three stages. (CP)

    2Fort, the key Sentry Gun location is just outside the large spawn, covering the courtyard, battlements, and the open hatch from the front lobby. Place your dispenser in the opening to spiral ramp to the Intel room and any enemy attempting to run past your SG is blocked from getting out of its range. (CTF)

    Each persons play style varies, so I have kept this mostly non-detailed on where to build. There are even more finer points I have left out, as this is designed to be a helpful starter document, experience is the best teacher. Fell free to add your own experiences pro and con. If this all seems to complex, just stick to the Basic how to do it section above, and pick up things as you go.

    Update 03/06/09

    I have been lacking on updating this post since the Engi update, but here are a few more pointers:

    Upgrading buildings:

    The biggest value an Engi can bring to a team is a level 3 teleport to the right place (where it can survive). This gets team members back into action far faster than a dispenser or running from spawn. It also creates targets other than your teleport for the other team to shoot at. Make building a level 3 teleport a priority. Note that you can "build" the teleport to level 3 at your spawn, then build the exit. While taking longer, it delivers players far faster when you account for recharge time.

    Upgrading dispensers, a nice level 3 dispenser is liked by all teammates, and delivers metal to you far faster for building and repair. This should be a high priority too. And maybe required first on some maps to get the metal to build out other buildings.

    Sentry Guns - With the scout and pyro updates anything much less than a level 3 sentry is an issue, level 3s finish off pyros rapidly if placed correctly. Although a level 1 will always be the first target of an attacker, buying you time. Level 2s have a place when you don't want the gun to stick up higher than the wall or whatever you built it behind.

    Each map is different, so build priority and upgrades are different. However, the difference between winning and losing can be hung on a level 3 teleport or two, keep that in mind. Note when your buildings are destroyed, they start again at level 1 when rebuilt, so pick your build locations for durability.

    Capella









    Capella
     
  2. stock

    stock New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2008
    Messages:
    632
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ack, I was just getting started on an Engi guide, but you beat me to it. Just a few things to add:

    1) Crossfire: An extremely effective strategy with sentry guns is to position 2 or 3 guns so their fire-arcs overlap, pushing enemies back more effectively. For example, on the second control point of Warpath, setting up guns on the top of the point, the middle of the next building along the wall, and the entrance to the ridge will provide a very effective means of seperating ubers and making life hell for the other team.

    2) Working together: If you and another engi are familiar, or both using mics, coordinate your buildings to get gear up faster. 2 engineers building a sentry will get it to lvl3 much faster then one engi working alone. Also, while your gear is your top priority, look around at the other engineers buildings from time to time. You may not get points for repairing their gear, but its a definite advantage to your team when the engineers cover each other during absence.

    3) This is just a novelty item, but you can use your guns to shoot loose weapons (those dropped by casualties) towards another engineer or into a spot of safety where you can secure that extra 100 metal for yourself.


    Also, as personal preference, I usually build my sentry first when arriving at my chosen spot, pick up one small box of metal, then throw up my dispenser. This way, while you're extremely low on metal for a brief period, your dispenser will be up and full by the time you get your sentry to level 2 from scavenged metal.


    EDIT: I'm working on some overheads of Warpath as an example of how to use sentry crossfire to push enemies back.
     
  3. Capella

    Capella New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,420
    Likes Received:
    0
    Good points, remember this thread is aimed at basics.

    For someone reading a Basic guide this build sequence should be safe. Especially on Warpath.

    Capella
     
  4. djrogue6180

    djrogue6180 New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2008
    Messages:
    46
    Likes Received:
    0
    Great Post. I don't think you left anything out.
     
  5. Juralis

    Juralis Head Admin
    Head Admin

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2008
    Messages:
    6,328
    Likes Received:
    199
    There is one thing I would add to engineer basics: turn your teleporter exits when appropriate.

    It's amazing how often this is forgotten. It can be very disorienting for a player to teleport in facing a wall or a corner, and it can waste valuable time. You can right-click to change the direction of any of the buildings you are about to build, and an arrow will show you which way it will face. This can also be useful for placing SGs in tight places.
     
  6. Capella

    Capella New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,420
    Likes Received:
    0
    Very good point!

    I have never really worried much if I place a teleport exit on a ledge on Blackmesa and people run forward to thier deaths, serves them right for not looking. :mrgreen:

    As you point out seeing is good, especially if a spy is standing behind your teleport exit stabbing people as they show up.

    On the other hand, beware that on some maps putting a tele near a wall is a bad idea, Badwater is one, if you place a teleport against the wall near the first CP, players will become trapped in the wall.

    And teleporting players to the bottom of the pit on Blackmesa may even draw you a ban. Be aware how much you effect the game play.

    Capella

    If i had to repeat anything it is rule number 2, dont leave the spawn with less than FULL metal, I still see this happening. It is just plain stupid, you delay your build time waiting for metal to spawn. If you don't want to run back to the spawn after building a teleport entrance, then don't build one at all. You won't have the metal to do it when you get where you are haeaded anyway

    C
     
  7. [EC]Rev.DeathMachine

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2008
    Messages:
    42
    Likes Received:
    2
    This is a very helpful post even though I already do some of the things that you suggest. Putting the dispenser in front of the opening to the spiral is a brilliant idea. I'll start using it as soon as I get home!

    Thanks!
     
  8. Xabu

    Xabu Guest

    Another helpful hint or two.

    If someone (spy usually) takes out all your teleporter entrances, all engineers should not leave simultaneously to rebuild them.
    If you're not doing anything important, help other engineers build faster; even for small things like teleporter exits.
    Watch the back of other engineers and they'll watch yours. If they're dead or have to depart temporarily, it isn't that difficult to keep an eye on two Sentry guns simultaneously. Even new players to Engineers are usually quick to repay you when you're building if you help them.
     
  9. Synngry

    Synngry New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2008
    Messages:
    804
    Likes Received:
    0
    Since the patch came out, ive been wondering, what do we upgrade first in a "i need to get it up quick" situation? /boggle
     
  10. Capella

    Capella New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2008
    Messages:
    1,420
    Likes Received:
    0
    Re: Build priority after the patch - good question,

    And of course it depends more on the situation. From what I have seen a single teleport at level 3 can service the entire team.

    Having a live body at the front is far better than having upgraded the sentry or the dispensor.

    However if your team is not protecting their transport, then SG and dispensor first, once protected build out the teleport. In short if the teleport doesn't survive there is no point in rushing it to level 3.

    But all in all, teleport gets priorty if you plan to win. If a spy is tearing you up, SG to defend against pyros and scouts, and dispensor to heal your teammates.

    From the teams point of view, they want to get back to action fast ( which gives the team a better chance to win). They want to be healed and get more ammo, just in case they survive long enough, the SG is there to protect the other stuff and discourage non-uber rushes.

    Note also the SG will be the top target, followed tby the dispensor, followed by the tele. Build them far apart. When I play I usually go for the teleport just after the SG goes down. With the patch teleports are a big game changer, negating long respawns designed to balance maps.

    Capella
     
  11. Krimp

    Krimp VIP Supporter
    VIP

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2008
    Messages:
    2,058
    Likes Received:
    69
    Capella is correct in that it depends on the situation, but my usual order is Level 1 sentry, level 1 dispenser, upgrade sentry to level 3, teleporter exit, upgrade dispenser to level 3, upgrade exit to level 3. I guess it appears I'm mostly thinking about myself, but an exit and dispenser aren't much use if they are destroyed before they even finish building.

    On maps like Warpath though, I usually build the dispenser first due to lack of metal.
     
  12. Synngry

    Synngry New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2008
    Messages:
    804
    Likes Received:
    0
    i usually do dispenser1 -> teleport1 -> sentry1 -> dispenser2 -> sentry 2 -> dispenser 3 -> teleport 2->3 sentry3 on warpath

    Though if its defending the last cap take out the teleporter all together
     
  13. Drunk Guy

    Drunk Guy Guest

    you guys are weird.

    I go teleporter first, then dispenser then gun. I usually let the fifteen seconds it takes to collect fallen weapons instead of building my gun first, and make sure people teleport in to cover me.

    It doesn't always work out, but on a decent team like the ones we usually get on NH, it's not a problem.
     
  14. Hills

    Hills Server Admin
    VIP

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2008
    Messages:
    3,100
    Likes Received:
    8
    I normally go Dispenser 1-3, then Sentry 1-3. This way I have health/metal and a good defense while I build up metal for transporters. The transporters are useless if you don't have a good defense.

    "The best offense is a good defense".
    ~source -
     
  15. [EC]Rev.DeathMachine

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2008
    Messages:
    42
    Likes Received:
    2

    I pretty much do the same except that sometimes I'll build the dispenser first, if there isn't a lot of metal around. Normally I'll Build the teleport exit then the dispenser and then the sentry. Then I'll upgrade the sentry first, then the teleport and finally the dispenser.

    The bottom line is that to be a successful engie you have to be able to adjust your gameplan on the fly. ...There are certain times that i don't even build a teleport because I'm concentrating on defending a cap point, especially if it's the last one.
     
  16. djsartre

    djsartre New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2009
    Messages:
    226
    Likes Received:
    0
     
  17. djsartre

    djsartre New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2009
    Messages:
    226
    Likes Received:
    0
    I agree to this line of thinking. A determined pyro or demoman can knock all your buildings out at once if you build to close. However I believe it is important to keep in mind that if you do decide to build further apart to avoid this, that now you will be more open to spy's.
    You wont be able to remove a sapper from a building that is too far away and if you do you may risk losing your other buildings. However on the roof of the tower in the Orange map or when exposure to direct enemy fire is possible then I would agree to spread them out. I prefer to keep everything within about 5 feet or 2 seconds from me. This is usually enough distance to negate the area damage of demomen and soldiers and close enough to remove sappers while staying near your other buildings. Ill try and think of other basic engineering tips to post soon. And thank you Capella for making this guide. There are a lot of good tips in here for beginning engineers.
     
  18. djsartre

    djsartre New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 1, 2009
    Messages:
    226
    Likes Received:
    0
    (1) Also I was just thinking about the question of build priority. I believe this to be a matter of personal preference. As most engineers play they will develop a order for how they build.

    (2) I also believe that for this person it is the best order because they have rehearsed this order and have a automatic plan of action on what they will do. Now that being said. I believe the best order for a beginning engineer is to build a Sentry Gun then use all available metal left to begin upgrade of your Sentry. Which in most cases should be 70 metal.

    (3) Then return to your Resupply/Spawn point and pick up more metal. Then return to the location of your Sentry gun if it is still up... and finish upgrading to level 2 only. By this time if it is still up there should be numerous dropped weapons around the general area of your sentry. NOTICE: I have mentioned nothing of a teleporter entrance yet.

    (4) This should have already been built and upgraded to level 3 before you leave the spawn for the first time. And while this point may seem obvious to most of us I will explain it. When you upgrade your teleporter to Level 3 before leaving spawn it is not obvious to spy's and random scouts in your spawn because it is not active.

    (5) Also when it does finally come online it is automatically level 3 allowing for a mass influx of your teammates allowing them to defend your teleporter easily. If it is only a level one still requiring upgrade then you may lose it pretty quickly.

    (6) To go a little further on the point all you have to do is place your exit and leave. Which attracts little attention. Now back to the original point. After upgrading your Sentry Gun to level 2 find only one dropped weapon to gain 100 metal. Build your dispenser near your sentry with this. If you have leftover metal then use it to start upgrading your sentry to level 3.

    (7) Please keep in mind that your Sentry Gun cannot see through your dispenser. So try to to build your dispenser where you believe the enemy will not use it to block the fire of your Sentry.

    (8) One last tip because I normally don't type this much is that your Sentry Gun can and will kill you and your teammates. YOU and your dispenser ARE susceptible to your sentry guns fire. Try to stay out of its line of fire when it is shooting. YOUR TEAMMATES ARE susceptible to your sentry guns fire.

    (9) However rare your teammates can be killed by your sentry's rocket attacks. While usually your teammates are understanding this can be awkward and a little annoying for both of you.

    So all that said have fun and remember be persistent your stuff will get destroyed and you will die. Just rebuild it and get revenge!

    DjSartre :grin:
     
  19. Synngry

    Synngry New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2008
    Messages:
    804
    Likes Received:
    0

    Wall of text headshots all readers.
     
  20. (MP)Ryan

    (MP)Ryan New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2008
    Messages:
    2,164
    Likes Received:
    37
    We've been seeing a lot of crappy engineers lately. Don't know if it's new people in general, or new to the class. Maybe both. Anyway...

    While it depends on the map, this is a general good order of build sequence:

    ATTACKING:
    1. Teleporter entrance at spawn, upgrade to level 3 BEFORE deploying the exit.
    2. Teleporter exit near front lines.
    3. Depending on availability of metal or tenuousness of situation, recommend a level 1 sentry, immediately followed by a level 1 dispenser.
    4. Upgrade sentry.
    5. Upgrade dispenser.

    DEFENDING (particularly on round start):
    1. Drop teleporter entrance at spawn, collect 200 metal from cabinet and move to chokepoint.
    2. Build Level 1 sentry and dispenser.
    3. Upgrade Sentry.
    4. Upgrade Dispenser.
    5. Drop teleporter exit.
    6. Upgrade teleporter.
    *With enough readily available metal (e.g. box of 200 respawning) this sequence can be completed in less than two minutes, with the sentry at level 3 within 60 seconds.

    Obviously, there are some times when you're going to want that teleporter upgraded right away if you're in a relatively inaccessible position, or the dispenser to level 3 if there is little metal (Warpath), but those are a good baseline order.

    AND ALWAYS, ALWAYS TURN YOUR TELEPORTER EXITS!