Community Payload strategy

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This article is about Community Payload strategy.

General strategy

  • A good defending team sets up their defenses on more than just near the first Capture Point, while still defending the cart as well. Setting up at one single location is never a good idea, as a single entity can take out the whole makeshift "base", while spreading out too much won't do any better, as this might lead to stretches where there isn't any defense to halt the process of BLU.
  • Remember that working as a cohesive unit produces results on either team, both attacking and defending. A single Heavy-Medic pair on either team can instantly halt or speed up the cart's process, depending on their side.
  • Do not focus too heavily on the cart if no BLU players happen to be pushing it. They will most likely take alternative routes or attempt to flank your team if you set up all your defences near it.
  • On some stages, there are locations on the cart's path where leaving it will make it fall back to a certain point due to hills. This means that BLU will need to work together even more at these points, as leaving the cart for a mere second can almost bring it back to the bottom.
  • Even though team strategy is almost required on this game mode, that doesn't mean trying to go in as one class can't produce results. However, constantly attempting will only hinder your team.

Class-specific strategy

Leaderboard class scout.png Scout

  • Scouts are much more effective on offense, as they count as two entities when pushing the cart. They are good on Payload for leading pushes or as last-ditch efforts, pushing the cart sometimes far enough to earn more time or to win the round.
  • When attacking, the Payload itself can be a valuable asset for a Scout. Its healing will help offset their shallow health pool and it can function as a shield while crouching.
  • Without the benefits of a cart, any source of healing is essential for the RED team. Mad Milk or the Candy Cane can be employed to this effect.
  • Bonk! isn't much use for defense or offense, but it can still be used to draw the other team away from the cart, or to help deal with Sentry Guns near it.
  • Scouts using the Sandman can more easily land hits on enemies pushing the cart, hampering BLU's progress.
  • Scouts can rush in as soon as the round begins, pushing through the still-preparing enemies and making routes for their team.
  • As with any game, a Scout should use hit-and-run tactics when attacking enemies pushing the cart. Players doing so tend to focus on what is in front of them, so attack from behind whenever possible.

Leaderboard class soldier.png Soldier

  • A Soldier's rockets can deal large amounts of damage against enemies clustered around the cart, due to splash damage.
  • When attacking, rocket jumping allows a Soldier to reach the cart quickly. The cart's healing will restore health lost while doing so.
  • As always, one of the Soldier's main duties is to take out Engineer nests. A player can hide behind the cart between firing rockets to defeat a Sentry Gun, but doing so alone is inadvisable. Sentry Guns are less likely to be encountered while on defense.
  • On offense, the Pain Train will allow you to push the cart at twice the usual speed. However, the increased damage taken from bullets can put you at a disadvantage.

Leaderboard class pyro.png Pyro

  • BLU players will often rush to the cart if set on fire, making afterburn less reliable for finishing them off. You can use this predictable behaviour to your advantage, though; if you are unable to catch an opponent, try to chase them towards the cart. Have teammates waiting to spring an ambush on them when this happens.
  • Flanking the cart-pushing players and attacking from behind can cause tremendous damage or even stop their progress completely. This is far more effective with the Backburner equipped.
  • Check for Spies when pushing the cart. A group of players all facing the same direction is a very tempting target for Spies, so be sure to look behind you. The cart supplies unlimited ammunition, so constant Spy-checking can be done with minimal impact.
  • Long range combat with a weapon like the Flare Gun is easier as players will move less when pushing the cart. The Detonator or Scorch Shot can be used to set several enemies alight at once.
  • The compression blast can be used to push enemies away from the cart. On maps like Upward, it can send them off the edge of the map and kill them as well. When attacking, use it to blast Stickybombs away from the cart.
  • Due to its ability to deal large amounts of close-range burst damage, the Phlogistinator can be deadly in certain Payload situations. If the attacking team is surrounding the cart, the Scorch Shot or Detonator can reliably gain large amounts of fire damage to quickly fill the 'Mmmph' bar. Once the bar is full, a well-timed (and well-aimed) crit ambush can decimate an entire grouped attacking force.

Leaderboard class demoman.png Demoman

  • Like the Soldier, Demomen and their explosive weapons become even more dangerous to tight groups of cart-pushing players.
  • Stickybombs are perhaps your best utility when on defense. A devious strategy is to place a cluster of bombs directly in front of the cart, and then wait for the enemy to start pushing it again. When the bombs come to be right under the enemy players, detonating can result in multiple kills. This is only really effective if the BLU team can only approach the cart from behind, making the Stickybombs harder to spot.
  • Even if you do not earn many kills with Stickybombs, their very presence can be enough to discourage the BLU team from approaching the cart.
  • Unlike Engineer buildings, the cart will not destroy Stickybombs when it moves over them.
  • When attacking, use your Sticky Jump to reach the cart quickly. The cart will heal the damage dealt in the process.
  • Also when attacking, check ahead for Engineer nests, and destroy them if you can. Otherwise, notify your allies to the upcoming danger.
  • On offense, the Pain Train will allow you to push the cart at twice the usual speed. However, the increased damage taken from bullets can put you at a disadvantage.

Leaderboard class heavy.png Heavy

  • A Heavy accompanying the Payload is even more durable than usual, thanks to the supply of health and ammo it dispenses. The lack of movement makes him extremely vulnerable to Snipers, though, unless he can safely crouch behind the cart.
  • A Heavy on defense should not be too ambitious if attacking a moving cart; he will most likely be targeted first, and the firepower of multiple enemies may be too much to withstand.
  • Attempt to surprise enemies pushing the cart whenever you can. At close to medium range, your primary weapon can rip apart even multiple players in seconds.
  • By standing in front of the cart, a Heavy can fire his Minigun, crouch and move all at the same time, which is not normally possible.
  • Consider using the Brass Beast when defending, since the loss in movement speed is not so problematic when the enemy has to come to you. However, you should be aware that moving more slowly makes you even more of a target than usual.
  • Due to the infinite ammunition when near the cart, and the attraction of a front-focused heavy to enemy Spies, constant firing can be safely used for Spy-checking. Infinite fire blasts from the Huo-Long Heater also are helpful in defending the cart.
  • It is possible for a heavy to jump on and ride the cart while it is being pushed. If there isn't any threat from Snipers, a typically slow heavy can move rather quickly, while still firing for an indefinite amount of time due to the ammunition resupply.

Leaderboard class engineer.png Engineer

  • Do not underestimate the importance of a Sentry Gun on offense. It won't help you push the cart, but it will provide an important anchor for your team as well as making your team difficult to flank.
  • When on the BLU team, move your buildings up gradually as the cart makes progress. Doing so will help your team maintain control of the area as you push through it.
  • Teleporters are the most important buildings to construct on larger maps. On Gold Rush Stage 3, having no Teleporters can lead to a 30 second walk back to the cart for most classes. This can leave a Heavy out of action for an entire minute with the longest possible respawn time.
  • A Sentry Gun cannot see the other team hiding behind the cart. This could allow a single person to use the cart as a shield to walk past it without being targeted.
  • The cart functions as a Level 1 Dispenser with infinite metal. If it is safe to do so, stand near the cart to receive extra supplies. In some maps' stages, such as Pipeline stages 1 and 2, the cart is available in your team's preparation area, allowing you to build your gear quickly.
  • The cart will destroy any building in its path, so do not place anything on the tracks.
  • Engineers with the Gunslinger can use the cart's infinite metal to build Mini-Sentry Guns with impunity.
  • The Short Circuit can be very effective while pushing the cart. It allows you to protect yourself and teammates from projectiles, and the cart will supply enough metal for repeated uses.

Leaderboard class medic.png Medic

  • Use the cart if there is no other source of healing available. Be cautious as the cart is most often the focus of attacks.
  • Your healing will stack with that of the cart. When used on a powerful class like a Heavy, this can make them very difficult to take down.
  • Healing a person being healed by the cart slows down your Übercharge rate. If there is no danger, heal teammates who are not pushing the cart.
  • Keep in mind that invulnerable players cannot push the cart. They will still be healed and supplied by it, though.

Leaderboard class sniper.png Sniper

  • Snipers should assume their usual role of attacking from behind the front lines, picking off approaching targets from afar. The Huntsman, on the other hand, encourages a more aggressive fighting style. In the context of Payload matches, a Sniper can more easily join his teammates to help push the cart.
  • If pushing the cart, staying behind your allies with the Razorback can provide a first line of defense against Spies attempting a chain stab.
  • Using Jarate on the Payload will often allow you to inflict its status on several enemies at once, leaving them highly vulnerable to focused attacks. Remember that the cart's healing will remove the effects more quickly than usual.
  • Enemies clustered around the cart are more susceptible to the piercing shots of the Machina, allowing a greater chance of multiple kills.

Leaderboard class spy.png Spy

  • If the attacking team is focusing on what is ahead of them, it is possible to pull off a "chain stab". This involves backstabbing multiple players in quick succession, which can completely ruin their progress. Silent killers like Your Eternal Reward are the best weapons for this tactic.
  • As a Spy on BLU, you are most useful moving ahead of the cart's current point and sapping any buildings that might be further ahead. This will give your team a better chance of getting the Payload to each point.
  • With the Dead Ringer, a Spy can be much safer when pushing the cart than most classes, especially while alone. Bear in mind that you cannot push it while disguised.
  • Although a Spy will often have better things to do, players should push the cart if safe opportunities arise. This is especially important if the cart is in enemy territory and about to start moving backwards; you may be the only player who can reach it in time.
  • It is more important than in other gamemodes to take out Teleporters, since when the enemy has a long way to go you can really delay their arrival on the battlefield.