Anti-Demoman strategy

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The Scout

The Demoman is a versatile class, sporting above-average health and devastating weaponry. When formulating tactics, you can usually depend on the roles of most classes not dramatically changing. This does not apply to the Demoman, who can opt for an explosive-oriented playstyle with a Stickybomb Launcher or a melee-oriented playstyle with a shield like the Chargin' Targe. Each style has its own evident strengths and weaknesses, so pay attention to his loadout to avoid being caught off guard.

General

Attributes Anti-Demoman strategy
Demoman emblem RED.png Role
  • The Demoman is great at both offense and defense. He is particularly good at mid-range combat.
  • As his name implies, the Demoman is excellent as demolitions. Pay attention to where he places his explosives, especially if you can't move from cover.
  • A Demoman using a shield instead of a trap secondary weapon will always have the shield visible. If you can see a shield on the Demoman's left arm, you can be certain that his loadout has no secondary weapon and will be melee-oriented.
Leaderboard class medic.png Health
  • The Demoman has a base health of 175, so he can withstand a considerable amount of damage.
  • Certain weapons change the Demoman's maximum health or heal him each time he gets a kill. Check what weapons he's wielding to estimate his health pool.
  • A Demoman carrying a shield will have a large resistance to fire and explosive damage, but is fully vulnerable to bullets and melee attacks.
Leaderboard class scout.png Speed
  • The Demoman is slower than a majority of the classes, but he can still chase you down if he uses a melee combat loadout.
Leaderboard class soldier.png Power
  • The Demoman is deadly at range but fires all of his projectiles in an arc. Make it difficult for him to aim by getting close and moving unpredictably.
  • All of the Demoman's explosives can harm himself, giving you an additional advantage at close range.
  • A Demoman with a shield and melee weapon can charge at you to deal critical hit damage. Avoiding his charge and staying outside his extended melee range gives you room to shoot back.

Explosive loadout

A Demoman with an explosive loadout is capable of dealing high damage over a large area. Due to the nature of his weapons, it is best to engage him at close range, where his weapons are hard to aim and inflict self-harm. The Stickybomb Launcher, in particular, forces you to consider possible Stickybomb traps as you navigate the battlefield. The Demoman's explosive weapons have a long reloading and arming time, so catching him by surprise works favorably.

Melee loadout

Alternatively, a Demoman can charge around with one of many dangerous melee weapons and a damage-reducing shield, indicated by his chosen shield attached to his left arm. When equipped with a shield, the Demoman can use its charge ability to close a surprising distance in a short time and deal critical hit melee damage. It is best to dodge or interrupt the charge, then attack from range while it is on cooldown. Many Demoman melee weapons also feature an extended range, skewing the odds of a melee fight in his favor. Bullet-based weapons work best against him, as none of his shields reduce bullet damage.

Weapon-specific

Main article: Demoman weapons

Primary

Weapon Anti-Demoman strategy
Grenade Launcher
Grenade Launcher + reskins
  • The Grenade Launcher has a long reload time and a small clip. Attack the Demoman while he is reloading.
  • A Demoman's grenades can bounce over cover and around corners; narrow passageways are especially dangerous, given the grenades' splash radius.
  • Grenades travel slowly and in a wide arc, giving you time to dodge or take cover.
  • If you cannot avoid the Grenade Launcher's explosions, move closer so that the Demoman suffers as well.
Loch-n-Load
Loch-n-Load
  • The Loch-n-Load has only 75% of the clip size of Grenade Launcher, forcing the Demoman to reload often and giving you more windows of opportunity.
  • Grenades fired from the Loch-n-Load are very powerful and travel faster, but do not explode if they strike anything other than enemy players or buildings. If you dodge the initial shot, you won't need to worry about it exploding under your feet.
Ali Baba's Wee Booties
Ali Baba's Wee Booties + reskins
  • Ali Baba's Wee Booties give the wearer an extra 25 max health, allowing the Demoman to remain in combat longer.
  • The Booties require the Demoman to give up his Grenade Launcher, making him much weaker at ranged combat.
  • The Booties give the Demoman increased turning control when charging; remain in areas that offer plenty of room and obstacles to avoid a Demoman's charge.
  • The Booties gives a 10% speed bonus when paired with a shield, making retreats harder.
  • The Booties also causes the Demoman's shields to refill 25% of it's charge meter upon a melee kill, allowing near-constant charges if he manages to row kills.
Loose Cannon
Loose Cannon
  • The Loose Cannon's cannonballs do not explode upon a direct hit with a player and deal significantly less damage upon hitting a surface. If you dodge a cannonball, you can assume the follow-up explosion will deal minimal damage.
  • The Demoman needs to time the Loose Cannon's charge so that cannonballs explode on top of you. Unlike when dealing with his Grenade Launcher, moving to or away from him can affect his aim.
  • The Demoman may use the cannonball's knockback to push you away from your team or into a hazard. Position yourself accordingly to stop this from happening.
  • Avoid being hit by both the cannonball's impact and its explosion, as this results in bonus "Double Donk" mini-crit damage.
B.A.S.E. Jumper
B.A.S.E. Jumper
  • Keep in mind that a Demoman trades in his Grenade Launcher to use the B.A.S.E. Jumper, making him weaker in direct combat.
  • A paratrooping Demoman will typically try to carpet bomb you with his Stickybomb Launcher. If the Demoman stays hovering in the air, he becomes an easy target.
    • His other, less practical option is to charge at you from the air using one of his shields. A Demoman with the B.A.S.E. Jumper and a shield is locked into melee combat, so avoid the charge and stay out of melee range.
  • A Demoman with the B.A.S.E. Jumper is much weaker while grounded. Take the opportunity to damage him after he lands or before he can launch into the sky.
  • The B.A.S.E. Jumper is ineffective in indoor areas with low ceilings. Retreat to a different venue if the Demoman's aerial assault becomes a problem.
  • The B.A.S.E. Jumper cannot be deployed again once retracted until he touches the ground. Harass him in midair or force him to retract his parachute, potentially taking fall damage.
Iron Bomber
Iron Bomber
  • The grenades launched by the Iron Bomber do not roll or bounce very much. The Demoman may count on the timed explosion to act as a temporary trap if he misses you with it directly, like a timed Stickybomb.
  • Although the Iron Bomber has a greater margin of error on missed grenades, its grenades have a 15% smaller radius than the regular grenades. If the Demoman is shooting grenades at the ground, you don't need to move as far away to avoid the explosion.
  • As when dealing with Stickybombs, be wary of a retreating Demoman, as he may use the Iron Bomber to lay traps too.
  • The Iron Bomber has a 30% shorter fuse time, giving you less time to avoid the Demoman's grenades.

Secondary

Trap weapons

  • Stickybombs can be destroyed by bullets and melee attacks (the latter option is rarely advised). If you come across a Stickybomb trap, shoot them before they explode to minimize damage.
  • Firing an explosive or a compression blast around corners can dislodge, but not destroy enemy Stickybombs. Try to scatter them in a direction where they won't harm teammates.
  • The Demoman will often watch over his Stickybomb traps, which might leave them more distracted.
  • Killing a Demoman will automatically remove all his Stickybombs and instantly give your team some breathing room.
Weapon Anti-Demoman strategy
Stickybomb Launcher
Stickybomb Launcher + reskins
  • A Demoman may use the Stickybomb Launcher to fight directly at medium range, but have trouble at close range due to the lengthy arm time.
  • The Stickybomb Launcher has a very long reload time. Attack the Demoman when he needs to reload.
  • Stickybombs are typically placed in hard-to-see spots as traps. Be aware of these spots and your surrounding in general; the best trap is the one you do not expect.
  • Once the Demoman detonates his Stickybombs, your team has a prime opportunity to advance and overwhelm him.
Scottish Resistance
Scottish Resistance
  • The Scottish Resistance can be used to set up multiple traps. If you encounter Stickybombs from this weapon, they are likely not the only trap you will have to deal with.
  • A Demoman can see his Scottish Resistance Stickybombs through walls, allowing him to detonate individual traps even when he can't see them.
  • The Scottish Resistance is not suited for direct combat because of its Stickybombs' longer arming time. A Demoman using the weapon will likely switch to his other ones when confronted.
Sticky Jumper
Sticky Jumper
  • A resourceful Demoman might use the Sticky Jumper to get reach higher ground or cover long distances to ambush enemies, all while remaining in good health.
  • A Demoman with the Sticky Jumper can retreat as quickly as he arrives. If he lays Stickybombs as if to retreat, weaken him enough so that fall damage can kill him.
  • A Demoman with the Sticky Jumper will still have access to the Grenade Launcher and his melee weapon, so expect a decent fight.
Quickiebomb Launcher
Quickiebomb Launcher
  • Stickybombs launched from the Quickiebomb Launcher can detonate quickly and are thus more difficult to avoid while fighting.
  • The Quickiebomb Launcher has a 50% smaller clip than the other Stickybomb launchers. Although the initial assault may be difficult to avoid, you only needs to hold out for a little while before the Demoman must reload.
  • Stickybombs from this launcher do 15% less damage. Enduring the damage from one Stickybomb can usually be survived.
  • The Quickiebomb Launcher charges its shots 70% faster. Don't assume that a Demoman who isn't attacking also isn't charging a shot to fire at you.
  • Unlike other Stickybomb launchers, the Quickiebomb Launcher's charge can increase damage inflicted by stickies. Do your best to avoid the stickies and close the gap between you and the Demoman to make his job harder.

Shields

Instead of using a Stickybomb Launcher, the Demoman can employ a shield that gives him the ability to rush at opponents every 12 seconds, granting him a guaranteed critical hit near the end of the charge. The shield also provides the Demoman added resistance to certain types of damage. Also, charging removes debuffs instantly.

  • A Charge can be delayed or nullified by using weapons with Stun, Slowdown and/or Knockback.
  • When the Demoman charges, he can only rush forward. Dodge the charge by strafing to the side or around cover, as backing up may not create enough distance.
Weapon Anti-Demoman strategy
Chargin' Targe
Chargin' Targe + reskins
  • The Chargin' Targe gives the Demoman resistance to fire and explosion damage. If possible, attack with bullets from outside his melee range.
  • If you cannot avoid a charge, move up close and end the charge early, before the Demoman travels far enough to bash you with the Chargin' Targe and land a Critical Hit with his melee weapon.
Splendid Screen
Splendid Screen
  • The Splendid Screen doesn't provide as much resistance to fire and explosions as the Chargin' Targe does. Still, damage him with bullets for maximum effectiveness.
  • The Splendid Screen deals considerably more impact damage and can do so at any range; try not to engage him in close combat at all.
  • The Splendid Screen's cooldown is 50% shorter, allowing him to charge a lot more often. Try to attack him between his charges.
Tide Turner
Tide Turner
  • Unlike the other shields, the Tide Turner provides full turning control while charging. Avoiding the charge will be much more difficult.
  • If the Demoman obtains a kill during his charge, he instantly refills 75% of his charge meter. Kill the Demoman or cancel his charge to prevent him from scoring more kills.
  • Like the other shields, the Tide Turner provides resistance to fire and explosions, albeit not as much as the Chargin' Targe. Continue using bullets for maximum effectiveness.
  • Unlike other shields, the Tide Turner's charge time will decrease if taking damage during a charge. Deal damage to the Demoman to prematurely stop his charge.

Melee

Weapon Anti-Demoman strategy
Bottle
Bottle + reskins
  • A Demoman may resort to his Bottle at close range, where his other weapons can damage himself. Since his movement speed is below average, most classes will have an easy time outrunning the Demoman while retaliating with ranged weapons.
  • The Demoman's slightly slow speed does not hinder him greatly, especially when combined with his above average health.
Eyelander
Eyelander + reskins
  • A Demoman will often use the Eyelander with a shield and charge at unaware foes to gain on-kill bonuses to his speed and health. Take advantage of this behavior by kiting him or luring him into traps.
  • If a Demoman using the Eyelander forces you into close combat, fighting back may be more beneficial than trying to escape; the weapon's range, head bonuses, and his shield's charge ability often make retreat impossible.
Scotsman's Skullcutter
Scotsman's Skullcutter
  • The Scotsman's Skullcutter reduces the Demoman's speed when active, making him an easier target. However, this weapon has an increased melee range and deals more damage, so attack the Demoman from afar.
Claidheamh Mòr
Claidheamh Mòr
  • A Demoman wielding the Claidheamh Mòr will likely equip a shield as well, to make use of how the weapon extends charge time by half a second. It becomes even more important to strafe or take cover when he charges.
  • The Claidheamh Mòr inflicts a flat 15% damage vulnerability on the Demoman, making him weaker to direct attacks.
  • The Claidheamh Mòr refills 25% of his charge meter upon a kill. Expect him to charge soon after a kill.
Pain Train
Pain Train
  • The Demoman suffers 10% more damage from bullets while the Pain Train is in his loadout. Use weapons that fire bullets for extra damage.
  • Even without the Pain Train, a Demoman can sticky jump onto a capture point and try to take it. Be prepared if you see a Demoman flying through the air past your team.
Ullapool Caber
Ullapool Caber
  • The Ullapool Caber creates a huge explosion on contact with enemies or objects. A Demoman might use the Ullapool Caber as a suicidal last resort; kill him before he reaches you.
  • Do not cluster near teammates, as this and the Demoman's other explosive weapons can punish you all.
  • If you cannot avoid being struck by the Ullapool Caber, fight back so that the Demoman dies from the blast or resulting fall damage.
  • Pairing the Ullapool Caber with a shield allows a Demoman to execute a kamikaze playstyle. As always, dodge to the side to avoid his charge.
Half-Zatoichi
Half-Zatoichi
  • A Demoman with the Half-Zatoichi is Honorbound to obtain a kill before switching weapons; he loses 50 health otherwise. Stay out of his melee range to force him to switch weapons and suffer the penalty.
  • If a Demoman scores a kill with the Half-Zatoichi, he will be quite healthy; treat him as if he were fresh out of spawn.
  • Wielders of the Half-Zatoichi can instantly slay each other; if you're confident in your samurai skills, you can quickly eliminate the enemy Demoman.
Persian Persuader
Persian Persuader
  • The Persian Persuader doubles the recharge rate of the Demoman's shield charges. Try to attack from outside his charge range, which will force him to waste it on getting in range.
  • The Persian Persuader allows the Demoman to get his charge earlier by collecting ammo; remove any nearby ammo sources while fighting the Demoman.
  • The Persian Persuader gives 20% charge for every hit. Paired with the Splendid Screen, the Demoman will almost always have a charge ready, be cautious.
  • The Persian Persuader reduces the Demoman's max ammo by 80% for both his primary and secondary weapons. If he is using a launcher with this sword, expect him to run out of ammo very quickly and force him to engage into melee combat, giving you an advantage.

See also