Community Brimstone strategy

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Pl fifthcurve event.png
Basic Information
Map type: Payload
File name: pl_fifthcurve_event
Released: October 21, 2016 Patch
(Scream Fortress VIII)
Developer(s): Tomi "ICS" Uurainen
Map Info
Environment: Halloween
Setting: Nighttime, overcast
Hazards: Pumpkin bombs, Ghost,
MONOCULUS, Skeletons,
Horseless Headless Horsemann,
Visual effects only:
Hazards (Underworld): Health drain, Infernal Lava
Deep Water: No
Pyrovision Support: No
Bot support: Yes
Map Items
Healthico.png Health Kits: Smallhealth.png ×11  •  Mediumhealth.png ×9
Ammoico.png Ammo Boxes: Smallammo.png ×6   •   Mediumammo.png ×10   •  
Largeammo.png ×7
TF2 crosshair.png Special: Pumpkin.png
Map Photos
Loading screen photos.

This article is about Community Brimstone strategy.

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

General strategy

See also: Community Skeletons strategy

This Halloween map features pumpkin bombs, Halloween pumpkins, magic spells, and Ghosts; see Community Halloween maps strategy.

  • "Go on, pretend Merasmus isn't even here." (see General Merasmus Strategy) General mechanics for dealing with or exploiting the monsters on other maps apply here as well. However, even if there may be various tactical reasons to attack certain monsters, in general no objectives or achievements are to be gained by attacking the monsters in any form. The monsters are there only as distractions and disruptions, adding chaos and spontaneity to the holiday theme; but also in situations, blunting overly strong attacks or defenses. Player's interaction with the monsters should be avoiding monster damage to their own team while encouraging as much monster damage as possible to the other team. (Really, as confirmed by ICS; this is fundamental to understanding the map.)
So, general Community Payload strategy applies, but with the added complication of spontaneous monster spawns:
  • As disruptive as they are, the monster spawns are, for the most part, a balancing factor, slowing a rapid BLU advance and weakening a strong RED defense.
  • Attack only those Skeletons that chase your team; waste no fire on any other monster.
  • When the enemy's Sentry Guns are shooting at Skeletons, the Horsemann, MONOCULUS, or Merasmus, they are not shooting at you; use these momentary distractions to more safely target Engineer nests.
  • In the last area, RED team spawns both sides of the Hell Pit and they have multiple ways in and out from the spawn areas. One route actually brings them behind the BLU team trying to make the last push into the Hell Pit. BLU should keep an eye out on those flanking exits!
  • Neither team can have any reliance on the relatively unlikely appearance of the Horsemann or MONOCULUS. However, Skeletons can be expected to appear at least once in any round, Ghosts are a continuous presence around the cart, and Merasmus is almost certain to disrupt any effective RED defense of the final point.
  • "What goes around comes around.":[1] Earlier Horsemann or Skeleton spawns tend to disrupt RED's defense while later spawns tend to attack BLU from behind.
  • "That never gets old!":[2] The better RED's defense is, the more spells Merasmus casts. BLU should rapidly assess any spell effect for any opportunity to break a strong RED position. Likewise, RED can see Skeleton spawns late in the game as a chance to force BLU to give up ground.
  • "It's so beautiful!":[3] RED should take some care jumping "into the light" at the last point; on the one hand, leaving the underworld to BLU grants them access to powerful spells that can blast through the final defense, but on the other hand, rushing into the light en masse effectively abandons the final defensive position. BLU should judge if any large number of RED players rushing into the light is an opportunity to advance the cart or to wipe out under-protected Sentry Guns and Dispensers.
  • "How are we for time?":[4] The late appearance of Merasmus is particularly disruptive to the RED defense and Merasmus will spare no Sentry Guns.
  • "Biggy Wiggy":[5] As time runs out on the Tiny Melee Curse, the player should stay away from walls, carts, objects, and uneven ground to avoid the crushing death at the end of the spell. (Actually, this is a general problem with the spell from its origin on Helltower, but it is a particular problem on this map because of the many long ramps, many props, and may tight spaces.)
  • The only Rare Magic Spells available on the normal level are those dropped by the Skeleton King. Several Rare Magic Spell pickups are available in the Underworld, which are accessible only late in the course of the map, no sooner than Point D.

Class-specific strategy

Leaderboard class scout.png Scout

  • When monsters are active, the BLU Scout has a job of monitoring the cart timer and tapping it as needed to keep it from moving backwards.
  • Bonk! Atomic Punch allows a Scout who is IT to lead the Horsemann deeper into the enemy. If you can make it, run past the point where the Horsemann stops chasing you and turns on the enemy.

Leaderboard class soldier.png Soldier

  • Because of the superior effectiveness of your rocket splash damage against Skeletons, it is your job to be the first engage approaching Skeletons at a distance.

Leaderboard class pyro.png Pyro

  • Pyro provides excellent clean-up of small skeletons.
  • There are a couple of open Lava pits for airblasting players into.

Leaderboard class demoman.png Demoman

  • Because Skeletons and Horsemann spawns are uncommon (1-in-8), it is a waste of fire to set up carpet traps at the known spawn locations.
    • But, if you recognize the spell or catch the beginning of the spawning animation, you do have a couple seconds to set a small trap.
  • Charging helps a Demoman who is IT to lead the Horsemann deeper into the enemy.

Leaderboard class heavy.png Heavy

Leaderboard class engineer.png Engineer

  • Sentry Guns have no interaction with ghosts, are an effective defense against skeletons, risk being left undefended when the Horsemann is near, and should not be left anywhere near MONOCULUS or Merasmus.
  • Bone breaker: Sentry Guns have a particular advantage against Skeletons and the Horsemann. Sentry Guns are safe from Skeletons and the Horsemann will usually take at most one swing at one. When these monsters are the closest target, Sentry Gun aim is perfect and the fire is rapid.
    • When skeletons spawn, drop a Sentry Gun where it can shoot into your team's area, yet be covered from the other team's direct attack.
    • Be aware of the Skeleton locations — don't stand between them and your own Sentry Gun!

Leaderboard class spy.png Spy

  • As the team's spook, you should be operating within the enemy's position. This puts you in the place to know when and where the enemy has a monster spawned behind them. This might not be readily apparent to the rest of your team; so, inform your team of this situation so they can make an aggressive move while the enemy is disrupted.
  • With your Cloak, Disguises, and area of operation, you will also have opportunities to ​​tap the cart as needed.

Merasmus strategy

See also: Community Ghost Fort strategy

Given how much time and effort has been put into getting the cart this far, BLU is here only to shove that cart into that Hell Hole. If Merasmus does show up, that only means that the BLU train is running very, very late, and, quite frankly, BLU is probably hoping for Merasmus' help in breaking the RED defense. No truce is called by the map, and the game clock does not stop. So, BLU is not likely to cooperate with RED in defeating Merasmus. If you want to kill Merasmus, son, go to Ghost Fort.

  • "Kill everyone like you would normally." Merasmus' attacks and teleports are strong, wide-ranging, and random. Avoid Merasmus, but find every opportunity to attack the enemy past Merasmus and to get around him to control the cart.
    • BLU should commit its firepower to flanking through the relative cover of the two side passages, assigning only a Scout or two to zipping in and out to tap or advance the cart at any opportunity created by Merasmus' teleports.
    • RED should fire past Merasmus at BLU and avail itself of every opportunity to bypass Merasmus to disrupt the final BLU push that is sure to come.
    • Teams of RED Soldiers, Scouts, and Flyros should jump into the flanking entrances of the Warehouse intent on destroying all forward BLU Engineer positions.
    • A RED Engineer could leave an inactive teleporter exit hidden on top of something in the Warehouse beforehand to activate if Merasmus appears.
  • Merasmus does tend to wander off and attack places outside of the pit area; prepare/watch for a BLU push on the cart the moment this happens.
  • Merasmus will not spare any Sentry Gun. Mini-Sentry Guns have the advantage here of being rapidly replaceable.
  • On the off chance Merasmus is defeated, the Bombinomicon that appears provides a second chance at the Rare Magic Spells in Hell.

Horseless Headless Horsemann strategy

See also: Community Mann Manor strategy
  • The strategies for accommodating the Horseless Headless Horsemann in your Brimstone battle plans are contrary to most of the strategies for defeating the Horsemann on Mann Manor.
    • There is generally no advantage in the Payload game mode to expending fire power on Horsemann.
    • Most tactics and match-ups for fighting the Horsemann apply in Brimstone only when the team has agreed to fight the Horsemann instead of the enemy.
    • Instead of fighting the Horsemann, assign the IT player to leading the Horsemann as far into the enemy as possible.
    • It is better to attempt the Sleepy Holl0WND achievement in Mann Manor.
  • The Horsemann will not chase players beyond certain boundaries. With no immediate target within that range, the Horsemann will run towards some specific point on the map; the B-point Horsemann should run towards point C, while the C-point Horsemann should run towards point E.
    • If BLU is driven off of the cart by the Horsemann shortly after capturing the second point, the Horsemann's attention will be largely focused on RED.
  • Have the IT player lead the Horsemann as far into the enemy area as possible; dying to enemy fire deep in the enemy is almost as an effective way of tagging them as any melee hit.
  • Fire on any enemy IT player attempting to lead the Horsemann to your team.
  • The Horsemann cannot jump up, so jumping up to a ledge will force the Horsemann to chase you the long way around, ideally through the enemy.

MONOCULUS strategy

See also: Community Eyeaduct strategy
  • The strategies for accommodating MONOCULUS in your Brimstone battle plans are contrary to most of the strategies for defeating MONOCULUS on Eyeaduct.
    • There is generally no advantage in the Payload game mode to expending firepower on MONOCULUS.
    • Most tactics and match-ups for fighting MONOCULUS apply in Brimstone only when the team has agreed to fight MONOCULUS instead of the enemy.
    • Laying heavy fire on MONOCULUS draws its attention to your team and makes your team vulnerable the enemy.
    • Truce is not called on Brimstone; the cart may be pushed and points may be captured while MONOCULUS is active.
    • It is better to attempt the Optical Defusion achievement in Eyeaduct.
  • Dodge MONOCULUS: build defenses behind its covering fire and launch pushes into enemy groups it disrupts.
  • Critical hits anger MONOCULUS, causing it to rapid fire three projectiles with perfect lead.
    • Attempting to anger MONOCULUS while it is in the middle of several of the enemy is an exception to the rule of not firing on MONOCULUS.
    • Attempt this only when you know your weapon has a Crit Boost and you do not have another priority target.
    • Avoid angering MONOCULUS when it is in your team's area.
    • Stay away from MONOCULUS when it begins to rapid fire its projectiles. Use cover from buildings if you are close to it when it gets angry.
  • Watch for MONOCULUS stuns as opportunities to safely run past it.
  • Do not stun MONOCULUS when it is in the middle of your enemy; use the Underworld boost instead to injure the enemy.