Community Halloween maps strategy

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Community Halloween maps strategy
Koth harvest event mid.jpg
The original Team Fortress 2 Halloween map, Harvest Event.


This article is about Community Halloween maps strategy. It provides strategies for themed mechanics that appear on most or all Halloween maps. It refers to other separate strategy pages that deal with the various monsters that spawn on several of the Halloween maps.

This article only covers the basic gameplay mechanics that are common on Halloween maps.

Merasmus.png Bosses and Monsters

For Community strategy articles available for monsters and bosses that appear on select Halloween maps, see:
Horseless Headless Horsemann : Horseless Headless Horsemann match-ups
Community Mann Manor strategy
Merasmus : Merasmus match-ups
Truce: Community Ghost Fort strategy
No Truce: Community Brimstone strategy#General Merasmus Strategy
MONOCULUS : MONOCULUS match-ups
Truce: Community Eyeaduct strategy
No Truce: Community Brimstone strategy#General MONOCULUS Strategy
Skeletons :
Community Skeletons strategy

Pumpkinbomb.png Pumpkin bombs

Pumpkin bombs are explosive traps that spawn and respawn randomly in several pre-defined locations around Halloween maps. They explode when damaged or hit by projectiles and so they can be used to attack and kill players close to a pumpkin bomb. Generally, they can only damage the enemy of the player that detonates one, as well as the detonating player, if too close.

  • Be wary of straying too near to pumpkin bombs, as enemies may use them to injure you.
  • Similarly, shoot pumpkin bombs yourself to harm enemies near them.
  • To detonate a pumpkin bomb, one simply attacks it at any effective range of the particular attack. Remember, one bullet, one pellet, one flame particle, one melee swing, one projectile, or one remote explosion is all that is required.
  • Pumpkin bombs can be used as a means for sneak attacks. Wait at a distance from the pumpkin bomb, and when an enemy passes near it, shoot the pumpkin bomb to detonate it, from clear across the map even, if within the range limit of the weapon.
  • These pumpkins can also be used in Kamikaze attacks when needed. When in close range of both the enemy and the pumpkin, attack the pumpkin for a swift and lethal explosion.
  • Pumpkin bombs can also be used by all classes for Jumping.

Leaderboard class pyro.png Pyro

  • Take care when ambushing the enemy with your Flamethrower when there are pumpkin bombs about. They are very easily detonated by the flame particles and you are usually within range of the explosion when you trigger it.

Leaderboard class heavy.png Heavy

  • If a Scout is attacking you, shoot any pumpkin bombs near him.
  • Your slow speed makes it easier for enemies to detonate pumpkin bombs near you, so destroy or stay away from them.

Leaderboard class engineer.png Engineer

  • Don't nest close to where a pumpkin bomb spawns. Learn where the pumpkin bombs spawn; a spawn location may be empty when you start building, but will spawn a bomb after you have finished.

Leaderboard class demoman.png Demoman

  • Pumpkin bombs can be incorporated into a Sticky trap to deal more damage with fewer Stickies.
    • Just don't hit the pumpkin bomb with one of your Stickies when laying the trap.
    • Stand far enough back to not get hit by the explosion in case you do hit it.
  • Lay a single Sticky Bomb next to a pumpkin bomb to setup a remote trigger for the pumpkin.

Leaderboard class medic.png Medic

  • Keep an eye out and stay away from pumpkin bombs in case enemies try to use them against you. Even when you are staying far back from the enemy, weapons that can barely damage you at that range can still easily set off a pumpkin bomb.

Leaderboard class sniper.png Sniper

  • Don't camp next to a pumpkin bomb; the nearby pumpkin bomb effectively gives enemies with Shotguns, Scatterguns, Pistols, and Mini Guns the power to one-shot kill you, and they don't even need to see you to kill you when they shoot it.
  • You can easily shoot pumpkin bomb near distant enemies, without charging, dealing enough damage to instantly kill a weaker class, even if the target player is hiding from you around a corner.

Leaderboard class spy.png Spy

  • With Cloaking or Disguise, you can sneak behind enemy lines and shoot pumpkin bombs from there.
  • Don't hide Cloaked next to a pumpkin bomb; players tend to shoot them just to clear them out.
  • A pumpkin bomb shot by your Revolver can do much more damage than your Revolver alone.
  • If any Engineer carelessly builds next to a pumpkin bomb, you can shoot it and instantly kill the Engineer, leaving his buildings for your taking. Remember to disguise before approaching the Sentry Gun.


Maps with Pumpkin bombs

Zepheniah Ghost.png Ghosts

Ghosts are a mechanic specific to some Halloween maps. Ghosts scare any player that gets too close.

  • The tactical effect of a Ghost's scare is to temporarily slow players and prevent them from attacking.
    • Ghosts have a negative effect on your team when they scare you or cause you to leave or avoid an otherwise tactical position, on the other hand they can scare the enemy, briefly making them less of a threat, either helping you to escape or to attack them with impunity.
  • Certain cues help you to know where a Ghost is, to avoid or exploit.
    • Ghosts have a signature moan that can be heard rooms away.
    • On most maps, rooms darken as a Ghost enters and passes, thus you can locate Ghost without being in the same room.
    • A frightened scream cues you that a nearby enemy is defenseless.
  • Ghosts take pre-programmed routes, so it is possible to learn where they appear and the paths they follow.
  • Respawned players are usually in a hurry to get back into the action and so tend to push through rooms in doorways blocked by ghosts.
    • Follow ghosts heading into doorways and narrow rooms in the direction of the enemy Spawn. (This happens often on Eyeaduct.)

Leaderboard class scout.png Scout

Leaderboard class pyro.png Pyro

  • Consider airblasting enemies towards ghosts to stun them.

Leaderboard class engineer.png Engineer

  • Avoid building where Ghosts can scare you.

Leaderboard class medic.png Medic

  • A Ghost scaring you will break your Medi Gun beam, stopping your healing and your active ÜberCharge.

Leaderboard class sniper.png Sniper

  • Scared enemies move slower and cannot attack, making them easier targets.


Leaderboard class spy.png Spy

  • A Ghost's scare will expose your Cloaked position to the enemy.
  • Watch for Sentry Guns placed where the Engineer can be scared.
    • Watch for any Ghost approaching a nest; Sap the Sentry Gun the moment the Engineer is scared.


Maps with Ghost(s)


Pumpkin.png Halloween pumpkins

All year long, Halloween pumpkins (Candy Pumpkins or Crumpkins) have a random chance of dropping when players are killed on a Halloween map (excluding MvM). When picked up, a Halloween pumpkin refills ammo and grants 3.2 seconds of crit boost to the player who picked it up.

  • Halloween pumpkins trigger a particular sound cue when dropped, which can remind you to look around for it if you are in a close fight.
  • Don't pick up a Halloween pumpkin if another nearby teammate can use it more effectively than you are and is moving towards it.
  • If there are no teammates around, consider collecting any unclaimed Halloween pumpkins to prevent an enemy from using it.
  • Wait to pick them up after any other boost effect you have has worn off (e.g., after a Kritzkrieg ÜberCharge or Mmmph crit-boost is depleted).
  • Close range classes such as the Pyro and Spy are usually able to pick up their own pumpkins shortly after killing their targets. This is because they are closer to their targets than longer range classes, such as the Sniper.
  • Since pumpkins drop semi-rarely, killing someone and hoping for a Crit boost is not an advisable strategy for fending off a push.

Leaderboard class scout.png Scout

  • The Scout is a particularly effective class to play when aiming to collect pumpkins, as the Scout is faster and so will cover areas faster, having a significantly better chance of beating other players to pumpkins, and then approach an enemy and utilize the power-up.

Leaderboard class heavy.png Heavy

  • The delay of your Minigun spin up wastes most of the short-lived crit-boost.
    • Arm with a Shotgun or Melee weapon before you pick up the pumpkin.
    • Alternately, spin up just before you pick it up.
  • Ammo management is essential to defending a point; use the Candy Pumpkin drops if you can reach them for a complete refill.

Leaderboard class pyro.png Pyro

  • Listen and watch for the signs of a Candy Pumpkin dropping when you are ambushing, picking one up that drops as you are ambushing can greatly increase the impact of your attack.
  • While you have a crit-boost, all reflected projectiles become criticals. Use enemy rockets to clear out groups of enemies.

Leaderboard class demoman.png Demoman

  • You can use the critical boost to pepper an area with critical stickybombs. However, they will be highly visible due to their critical glow, so try to launch them onto hard-to-see areas.

Leaderboard class sniper.png Sniper

  • As a Sniper, you are usually far away from dropped pumpkins, and collecting them is generally unhelpful, as you already deal criticals on headshot. A better strategy is to scope in on a pumpkin and kill any enemies attempting to pick it up.

Leaderboard class spy.png Spy

  • Picking up a Halloween pumpkin can expose your Cloaked position to the enemy.
  • However, if you are already in an open fight, picking one up could give you a couple of heavy shots from your Pistol or give you a real boost in a knife fight.
  • Wait until your uncloak has completed before picking up the pumpkin.
    • If you see an enemy attempting to pick up a pumpkin, consider collecting it immediately to deny them the crit-boost.
Maps with Halloween pumpkins

Spellbook Pickup.png Magic spells

Magic Spells appear on certain Halloween maps. Players that have a Spell Book equipped can pick up Magic Spells that grant them limited-use special attacks or effects.

  • Magic Spells, especially Rare Magic Spells, have spawning and access rules that are particular to each map; see the Community strategy page for each Halloween map for specific information about the Magic Spells on that map.
  • Rare Magic Spells are generally strong enough to be comparable to the impact of an ÜberCharge, possibly breaking a nest or a push.
    • Accordingly, they are either in limited supply (do not respawn) or are in restricted areas of the map.
    • On each Halloween map, learn the distribution of Rare Magic Spells and consider how to prevent the enemy from getting them first.


Maps with Magic Spells

Gargoyle Ghost.png Soul Gargoyles

Soul Gargoyles are a mechanic specific to certain Halloween maps. Soul Gargoyles have no benefit to game objectives; rather, they can be considered a general distraction to the team. Moreover, Soul Gargoyles only "count" during Halloween events, when their effects can count towards the item's rank, towards Scoreboard and Casual mode ranking, and towards certain Achievements or Halloween Contracts (Merasmissions). Picking up a Soul Gargoyle adds 10 Contract Points to the Primary Objective of the active Halloween Contract. The rest of the year, all the Soul Gargoyle has to offer is the sport of hunting for it.

If you want to pick up a Soul Gargoyle when Merasmus announces it:

  • First, figure out whether it is in your team's territory or not.
  • As you figure out where the Soul Gargoyle is (or isn't) you can change class as necessary to go out and pick it up.
    • If the Soul Gargoyle is in your team's territory, you might have no need to change a faster or sneakier class.
  • If you are killed when you are hunting a Soul Gargoyle:
    • First, viewing the Death cam, look behind the player that killed you for any glimpse.
    • Failing that, watch the spectation for glimpses of the Soul Gargoyle, using the mouse to sweep your view all around and using your fire buttons to switch between teammates, particularly focusing on your Scouts and Spies that are behind enemy lines.
    • After you Respawn, sweep the areas between your Spawn and the active battle.

Leaderboard class scout.png Scout

  • Naturally, Scouts can cover the most ground to search for and pick up the Soul Gargoyle and return to the fight as quickly as possible.
  • Bonk! Atomic Punch can help you run through the enemy to pick up the Soul Gargoyle.

Leaderboard class spy.png Spy

  • Disguised or Cloak and Dagger Spies are a choice for picking up Soul Gargoyles in enemy territory. Sneak in and pick up the Soul Gargoyle without enemies noticing.


Maps with Soul Gargoyles