Community Asteroid strategy

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Basic Information
Map type: Robot Destruction
File name: rd_asteroid
Version: Beta 15
Developer(s): Valve
Map Info
No. of Stages: 2
Environment: Space
Setting: Space
Hazards: Lasers, Pitfalls
Map Items
Healthico.png Health Kits: Smallhealth.png ×12  •  Mediumhealth.png ×8
Ammoico.png Ammo Boxes: Mediumammo.png ×14
Map Photos
Loading screen photos.
Map Overview
Asteroid overview.png

This article is about Community Asteroid strategy.

Note: It is recommended to read the main Asteroid article first to become familiar with the names of key map locations used in this article.

Asteroid is a Mann Co. Beta Map, so strategies may change until the final version is released.

General strategy

Attack the enemy robots

Each robot drops Power Cores, which increase the team score when you collect them. First team to reach 300 points wins the game.

  • Attack and destroy both A robots and collect the 3x5=15 Power Cores that they drop. Then proceed up to the left for health & ammo along the way. The A robots will re-spawn after 60 seconds.
  • You will arrive above the B robots...destroy them and collect the 3x10=30 Power Cores that they drop. Move to the left and up to the upper walkway. The B robots will re-spawn after 90 seconds and the A robot timer will restart in-sync with the B robot re-spawn timer.
    • When attacked, B robots may flee off the platform, falling into the water. If you don't see any B robots but the C robots are still shielded, check the water.
  • Destroy the C robots and collect the 3x15=45 Power Cores that they drop. Your team will now have 15 + 30 + 45 = 90 points on the board. The C robots will re-spawn after 90 seconds and both the A & B robot timers will restart in-sync with the C robot re-spawn timer, so all robots will re-spawn at the same time...after 90 seconds but only the A robots will be vulnerable.

Steal the enemy reactor core

  • Your Reactor Core doesn't need to be present to capture the enemy Reactor Core.
  • Unlike CTF, stealing the core requires significant time: first to charge it, and then to escape out of the Vault. Depending on the number of points being stolen, it can take 10-20 seconds for an attacker to even get free of the vault area. Because a core that is dropped within the vault area is nearly as (or even more) secure than one on the original capture point, cores do not require nearly as close of a defense as CTF intelligence does.
  • Egress with a stolen Core:
    • The three Lasers move at different rates, but line up for a moment approximately every 10 seconds. During this window, the Lasers route is the fastest egress from the Reactor Vault. However, escape via this route at any other time can require slow methodical movement while also risking instakill if mistiming, lag, or knockback disrupt your movement.
      • As the middle laser moves quite slow, you can wait till the middle laser is moving up, creating a (temporary) large space between the first & last laser, which you can then pass more easily (when the first laser moves up, move through it; and then wait for the third laser to move).
    • The most reliable (and generally the fastest) escape for a Core carrier is to leave via the one-way gate in the vault room, assuming that a nearby teammate is available to open the Gate.
    • The Vents, although feasible, are the lengthiest route and require the most time. The narrow corridor also presents little room to maneuver past defenders or dodge incoming fire. These same factors make the Vents very easy to defend, preventing recovery of Cores dropped in the Vents. As a result, the Vents are a risky choice and the other two routes are generally preferred.
  • The Reactor Core must be charged to at least 25 points before you can steal it. However, it is advantageous to charge as many points as feasible because:
    • The majority of the effort of stealing a Core is in getting to the point of charging the Core.
    • The higher the value of the stolen Core, the more likely the enemy is to divert players to defending it.
    • Escaping with a low value Core may often be worse than not stealing it at all because there can only be one core on the map at a time, meaning that your team cannot attempt to steal more points until the old one times out, is captured, or is returned to the point to charge further.
    • On the other hand, the longer you charge, the more time your opponents have to stop you. Especially if you're experienced enough to run through the lasers, two successful runs of 25 points gives more points then any unsuccessful run.
  • Because the Core fills at 5 points per second, you can estimate the value of core you are likely to be able to steal by estimating the likely enemy response time. If you won't have at least 10 seconds (approximately 100 points), you may wish to wait until a more opportune time.
    • You can identify more advantageous times to begin Core steals by watching the kill feed and enemies leaving spawn to estimate how many enemies are likely to be in the area.
  • Stealing the enemy's core--or even just making a credible attempt at stealing it--can also be an effective way to force an enemy to break off an attack and return some players to defense.
  • Even if your team doesn't capture it, stealing the core temporarily takes the stored points out of play for as long as the core remains active (60 seconds, can be "refreshed" by being picked up by any teammate no matter how briefly). In a close end game, a stolen core can buy your team enough time to score the 300 points needed to win even if the other team has more than 300 points "on the board."
  • If you have successfully charged a Core but do not anticipate being able to escape the Vault area alive, the single best place to be killed while carrying the Core is standing directly against the inside of the one-way Gate. Because any carried item drops immediately where you were killed, you will drop the Core in the doorway where it can be recovered by you or a teammate from outside the gate.

Defend your Reactor Core

  • If the enemy takes your Reactor Core back to their Reactor room then all of the points that the Core was loaded with will be added to theirs. When they steal your Reactor Core there will be an icon showing how many points are in the core and where the core is in the map. You temporarily lose those points while the Reactor Core is in enemy possession. If the enemy manages to capture your Reactor Core then all of those points will be gained by them.
  • If the enemy takes your Reactor Core there are two/three exits getting out of the Vault (depending on if an enemy teammate is nearby) which gives you time to kill them before they get out.
  • Reactor Core steals become increasingly valuable (and difficult to recover from) as the score imbalance increases. Thus, you should be particularly attentive to core defense when your team is ahead by a large margin, because the other team is likely to increasingly concentrate on a "Hail Mary" core steal.
  • Because defenders and Sentry Guns may be shifted forward to cover dropped Cores, be on guard against attempts to steal newly reverted and lightly-guarded Cores. Consider dispatching a player to "sanitize" the interior of the Core Vault immediately before a dropped Core times out and reverts.

Defend your robots

  • Losing a few points may not seem like a big deal, but each point contributes to the other team winning.
  • The first group of robots may seem like an unimportant loss, but it adds up. The more robots that are destroyed, the closer the enemy team is to your reactor core. Don't let the enemy team into your base!
  • Also, your robots will heal you if you are near them.

Class-specific strategy

Leaderboard class scout.png Scout

  • Work as a team of two Scouts. One Scout enters the enemy Reactor Core area through the right gate and the other Scout keeps the gate open so the Scout with the enemy Reactor Core can get out without going through the lasers or the crawlspace.
  • Bonk protects against the lasers in the Reactor Core room, and allows quicker access than the 2 alternate paths.

Leaderboard class soldier.png Soldier

  • Soldiers work best attacking the robots, or if necessary escorting the core carrier.
  • Soldiers are very powerful on this map due to the enclosed spaces; splash damage is a very viable, open areas in the map, and consistent source of damage output here.

Leaderboard class pyro.png Pyro

  • Despite doing only 75% damage against Robots, Pyros' consistent damage makes them reasonably good Robot attackers. Unlike some other classes (e.g., Demomen), destroying a robot requires that Pyro make a sustained attack, which consumes significant ammunition; fortunately, just two Robot gibs will fully recharge a completely empty Flame Thrower.
  • Airblast is an extremely valuable multipurpose tool that can be used for:
    • Area denial when defending against attackers trying to recovering/reset dropped power cores (especially against Bonked Scouts).
    • Pushing enemies off the edge of the mid bridge area for an instakill.
    • Escorting friendly Core carriers.
    • Blocking and disrupting ÜberCharge pushes.
  • Engineer buildings are critically important, but also very vulnerable and a constant target for Spies, particularly when in the enemy base. Consider being an Engineer Buddy to deter the enemy team from deploying Spies.
    • Pyros working closely with Engineers should equipping the Homewrecker and prioritize removing Sappers from Teleporters.
  • The Phlogistinator's healing and crit ability allows you to roam freely, targeting enemies at choke points where you can quickly take out a whole group at once.
    • The inability to airblast makes the Phlogistinator a poor choice if you expect to be defending a dropped Core.
  • The circuitous map lay out lends itself to ambushing enemies from behind, where the Backburner is particularly effective.
  • The low balconies around the A and B robots are the perfect height for Detonator jumps, and with a bit of practice jumps from the lowest mid route and from the main outside area to the battlements are possible. All of which allow crafty Pyros to attack from surprising angles.
  • The abundant underwater areas on Asteroid make the Neon Annihilator a great tool for ambushing enemies either invading your waters, or for dealing with enemies while attacking through their waters.
    • The Neon Annihilator's ability to remove Sappers is frequently overlooked, making this an excellent dual purpose weapon for Pyros patrolling the front portion of the base where Engineer buildings, Spies, and water are all plentiful.

Leaderboard class demoman.png Demoman

  • Demomen seem to be most valuable in destroying enemy Sentry Guns or sticky trapping the Reactor Core area.
  • Demomen are also very powerful in this map due to their high splash damage, capitalize on this, and you can control large areas of the map if you have a keen eye.
  • Stickies can be laid in masses and detonated to destroy a whole stage of robots instantly before the enemy team can respond to the Robot damage alert.
  • By laying one or more stickies directly on the Reactor Core, a Demoman can force a would-be Core thief to shoot the stickies and clear the Core prior to beginning a capture. Depending on the number of stickies deployed, this can provide substantial early warning as to a steal attempt.
    • The Scottish Resistance allows a Demoman to preserve his early warning stickies while continuing to use his secondary weapon to engage the enemy.
  • If you equip a shield, you can use the charge action while carrying the core, fleeing the scene rapidly
    • It is also effective with a shield while defending when a enemy is trying to flee with your core in the vents. You can surprise attack the core carrier when he is almost out of the vents.

Leaderboard class heavy.png Heavy

  • The short sightlines make the spin up time on your Minigun a liability. Consider aggressively spinning up if you think enemies are nearby, or switching to the Tomislav for better reaction time.
  • Heavies seem to be more valuable on area defense:
    • Around the robots when they are being attacked.
    • Around the Reactor Core if it gets stolen or is in jeopardy of being stolen.
    • Around a Sentry nest of more than 1 Engineer.
    • Around their own spawn when enemies rush the base.
  • Heavies can also be used to push as there is little room to dodge the Heavy's large cone of fire and high damage output. He can be a reliable source of damage and pushing power.
  • The wide open spaces and vertical dimension around the midbridge and A Bridge dramatically diminish the Heavy's effectiveness in these areas. If at all possible, the Heavy should avoid making a stand in these areas. A better option is to use your greater health, covering fire from teammates, and possibly the GRU to move quickly to the next chokepoint, establish a screen of Minigun fire, and delay enemy reinforcements while your teammates mop up.

Leaderboard class engineer.png Engineer

  • Because the higher value robots are shielded until the lower tier robots are destroyed, closely defending the A robots can deny the enemy the ability to access higher value robots and significantly reducing their scoring potential.
  • A Sentry placed at the vents end of the Reactor Vault corridor can limit the approach and escape options of players attempting to steal the Core while. This location is relatively well protected from attackers outside the Vault, and has long sight lines to any players attempting to approach (or escape) from inside the vault. It also complicates the timing required to sneak through the Lasers route.
  • Sentry Guns will automatically attack enemy robots if in range. Although this can be a useful way to steadily generate points if you are able to construct a Sentry Gun in the enemy base, it can also be a dangerous distraction if there are more pressing targets. The Gunslinger can be used to override this behavior if necessary.
  • Building a Dispenser in front of the one-way gate can delay the enemy from using that route to access the Core Vault.
  • Building a Teleporter Exit under the enemy base is an effective way to get to the Core Vault.

Leaderboard class medic.png Medic

  • Medics should be flexible and be where their team is getting hurt the most...either with a Soldier or Heavy, or perhaps a Pyro.
  • The tight corridors mean that the Kritzkrieg is relatively effective on this map.
  • ÜberCharge-specific advantages:
    • It is possible to get multiple team-mates through the enemy lasers using an ÜberCharge.
    • An ÜberCharge can easily block an enemy player from crawling through the vents.
    • Using an ÜberCharge can allow a brief moment for your healing target to destroy the robots in the immediate area without sustaining damage.

Leaderboard class sniper.png Sniper

  • The sniping options on Asteroid are fairly limited, though they remain effective:
    • The roof areas next to the mid bridge.
    • The upper decks on either side of the B robots bridge.
  • The close quarters inside both bases makes Snipers generally less effective on this map. They do, however, make Jarate and the Machina somewhat more effective.

Leaderboard class spy.png Spy

  • Note that Sappers do not work on the robots.
  • Spies are great for sneaking behind enemy lines with Cloak and stealing the Core or killing robots.
  • Using Cloak can also help with sneaking across the Mid Bridge or Under Bridge without getting noticed.
    • Cloak can also be used to sneak through the lasers. It retains its usefulness even if the other ways aren't blocked, as it is quicker than the vents and less suspicious than a door opening by itself. This is best done with the Cloak and Dagger, the L'Etranger, and a good sense of timing.
  • Using the Basement areas as a main way of travel can easily help with ambushing the enemy team.