Critical hits, also known as crits or full crits, are attacks that do extra damage and have distinctive sound effects when fired and upon hitting a target. Players on the receiving end of the attack will have the words "CRITICAL HIT!!!" in green, or "MINI-CRIT!" in yellow, respectively, appear above their head. Buildings are immune to both types.
Critical hits can be easily distinguished from normal hits. Most melee weapons have a unique swinging animation, projectiles such as rockets or stickybombs have a team-colored glow and sparkle effect (exemptions are the Cow Mangler 5000, the Righteous Bison and the Pomson 6000), bullets have team-colored trails, and Flamethrowers produce additional team-colored particles. These visual effects are accompanied by a crackling electric sound upon firing and receiving a critical hit.
Self-inflicted critical hits will not deal critical damage to the user, but will still play the sound effect.
Critical hits deal three times the base damage of the weapon and ignore both the distance modification and the random damage modification of normal shots, though explosive weapon critical hits still suffer from splash damage fall-off. As a result, weapons that are normally merely nuisances at long range (such as Miniguns) can become dangerous when critical hitting. The extra damage is of the "critical" type instead of matching the weapon's original type, meaning it cannot be resisted by the Vaccinator's normal healing or Upgrade Station buffs — though this also allows other mechanics to target critical damage specifically, such as the Battalion's Backup and the Vaccinator's ÜberCharge, which fully neutralize the extra damage.
When a player is killed by a critical hit, the class will let out a loud scream that differs from ordinary non-melee deaths, unless the class was gibbed (in which case they let out a larger "ouch" noise than explosive kills usually cause). The kill feed icon for a critical hit surrounds the weapon icon with a red glow.
Critical hits and mini-crits do not stack in any form — that is, meeting multiple conditions to earn a critical hit or a mini-crit will not deal any more than the normal damage boost. For example, the Frontier Justice's "Revenge" critical hits will not deal any additional damage if the Engineer is ÜberCharged by a Kritzkrieg, nor will a player marked for death and coated in Jarate suffer more than standard mini-crits. This means that team coordination is required if multiple players have ways to increase their critical hit output, or extra damage will be wasted. If both a mini-crit and full critical hit occur with the same attack, the critical hit overrides the mini-crit.
- 1 Critical hit chance
- 2 Special cases
- 2.1 Weapons that can gain both random critical hits and situational critical hits
- 2.2 Weapons that cannot gain random critical hits but can gain situational critical hits
- 2.3 Weapons that cannot gain random critical hits and cannot gain situational critical hits
- 2.4 Weapons that cannot critical hit in any way
- 2.5 Weapons that are exempt
- 3 Crit Boost
- 4 Mini-crits
- 5 Related achievements
- 6 Update history
- 7 Bugs
- 8 Notes
- 9 Gallery
- 10 References
Critical hit chance
The base critical hit chance for standard weapons is 2%. This is modified by a bonus percentage based on how much damage the player has done in the last 20 seconds, which scales from 0% at 0 damage to 10% at 800 damage. For example, if the player has dealt 200 damage in the past 20 seconds, the additional bonus percentage is 2.5% and so the overall critical hit chance is 4.5%. As a result, the highest natural critical hit chance attainable is 12%.
Melee weapons are designed to critical hit far more often than ranged ones in order to encourage their usage at close range. Their base critical hit chance starts at 15% — higher than attainable for ranged weapons with the recent damage bonus maxed out — and their recent damage bonus scales from 0% to 45%, meaning a player that has done 800 damage or more in the last 20 seconds has a melee critical hit rate of 60%.
Among those weapons that trigger randomly, critical hit probability is determined differently based on the type of weapon. Single-shot weapons, such as the Shotgun, Revolver, and the Rocket Launcher, determine the chance to critical hit with every shot. Thus, every shot of the Shotgun will have a 2% chance to launch a flurry of critical pellets, assuming no previous damage done. Rapid-fire weapons, which include the Minigun, Syringe Gun, Flamethrower, and the Pistol, check for critical hits once a second. With weapons like these, a positive critical hit determination results in all shots for the next two seconds being critical. This only applies to the active weapon; getting two seconds of critical hits on one's Pistol will not cause their Shotgun to fire critical hits during this time.
There is a wide variety of situations that affect whether a weapon can deal critical hits or not.
Weapons that can gain both random critical hits and situational critical hits
The following weapons can deal guaranteed critical hits in specific situations in addition to being capable of scoring them at random.
|List of weapons able to deal random and situational critical hits|
|Killing Gloves of Boxing|
Weapons that cannot gain random critical hits but can gain situational critical hits
The following weapons have a 0% chance of random critical hits in all situations, but can still deal critical hits in specific situations or if the user is crit-boosted.
|List of weapons unable to deal random crits but able to deal situational crits|
|Cow Mangler 5000|
|Sniper Rifle†||AWPer Hand|
|Bazaar Bargain||Hitman's Heatmaker|
|Sharp Dresser||Black Rose|
|Golden Frying Pan||Prinny Machete|
|Your Eternal Reward||Wanga Prick|
|Conniver's Kunai||Big Earner|
Weapons that cannot gain random critical hits and cannot gain situational critical hits
The following weapons have a 0% chance of random critical hits in all situations and do not have a means of scoring critical hits on their own, though they can still deliver critical hits if another effect is in play, such as a Kritzkrieg.
|List of weapons unable to deal random or situational critical hits|
|Eyelander†||Horseless Headless Horsemann's Headtaker||Nessie's Nine Iron||Claidheamh Mòr||Ullapool Caber||Half-Zatoichi||Persian Persuader|
|Flying Guillotine||Rocket Jumper||Sticky Jumper||Southern Hospitality||Sydney Sleeper||Enforcer||Dragon's Fury|
Weapons that cannot critical hit in any way
The following weapons cannot deal critical hits in any way because they mini-crit when they normally crit. Mini-crits work like normal on these weapons.
|List of weapons unable to deal critical hits in any way|
Weapons that are exempt
The following items cannot deal critical hits or mini-crits at all, usually because they cannot deal damage. Note that some of the items will still glow when crit-boosted; there will simply be no effect.
|List of weapons unable to deal critical hits or mini-crits|
|Bonk! Atomic Punch1||Sandvich1||Dalokohs Bar||Buffalo Steak Sandvich||Fishcake||Robo-Sandvich|
|Mad Milk||Mutated Milk3||Gas Passer||Jarate1||Self-Aware Beauty Mark3|
|Buff Banner1||Battalion's Backup||Concheror||B.A.S.E. Jumper||Thermal Thruster||Cozy Camper|
|Gunboats||Mantreads||Ali Baba's Wee Booties||Bootlegger|
|Razorback||Darwin's Danger Shield|
|Invis Watch||Cloak and Dagger||Dead Ringer||Enthusiast's Timepiece||Quäckenbirdt|
|Sapper1||Red-Tape Recorder||Ap-Sap||Snack Attack|
Crit boost is a state in which a player is guaranteed to deal critical hits with any weapon that is not specifically unable to score critical hits. A crit boost is indicated by the player's weapon glowing in their team color, with sparks of electricity surging and crackling from it. This affects most weapons that do not normally deal random critical hits, such as the Knife, Sniper Rifle, Gunslinger, and Eyelander, causing them to deal critical attacks for the duration of the boost; however, weapons that don't damage enemies (for example, Mad Milk, Jarate, Bonk! Atomic Punch, or Crit-a-Cola) won't gain any benefits from crits. Only the Cow Mangler 5000 is exempt from this rule, as it does mini-crits instead of critical hits.
A crit boost can be attained under the following circumstances:
- During Humiliation, the winning team is granted a crit boost.
- Capturing the intelligence in a game of Capture the Flag gives the entire capturing team a 10 second crit boost. This value can be altered or disabled by the server host console via a command.
- On Halloween maps during Halloween, killed players randomly drop candy-filled Halloween pumpkins. When picked up, the player is awarded around 3–4 seconds of crit boost.
- Upon killing an enemy with the Killing Gloves of Boxing, the Heavy will be crit boosted for 5 seconds. The crit boost applies not only to the Killing Gloves of Boxing, but to all the Heavy's currently equipped weapons.
- The Phlogistinator allows a Pyro to crit boost itself for about 10 seconds upon activating "Mmmph", but the crit boost only affects the Phlogistinator (or any flamethrower he picks up in that 10 second period).
In Arena Mode, a 'First Blood' buff is granted to a player who achieves the first kill of a round. It consists of a five-second crit boost.
- If players switch weapons during the buff, the electricity around their weapon will disappear, but critical hits will still be delivered.
- Triggering feign death with the Dead Ringer gives the attacker the 'First Blood' buff.
- The 'First Blood' buff counts as an ÜberCharge towards the Heavy achievement Supreme Soviet.
- Obtaining 'First Blood' as a Scout unlocks the First Blood achievement; killing five enemies with 'First Blood' unlocks First Blood, Part 2.
- The 'First Blood' achievement can also be earned by a Scout in Competitive Matchmaking mode, but no critical hits are awarded for the first kill.
Mini-crits add an extra 35% damage to a weapon's damage. Like normal critical hits, they ignore damage falloff, but unlike critical hits, they are still given ramp-up at close range and random spread. Full critical hits override mini-crits. Like full critical hits, mini-crits will have a glowing red outline in their kill icons and will be displayed with a larger font when combat text is enabled. If the player is under a mini-crit buff state (such as the Buff Banner or Buffalo Steak Sandvich), or the victim is under a mini-crit debuff state (such as being covered in Jarate or marked for death), all taunt attacks will also mini-crit. Aesthetically, mini-crits do not trigger critical death lines from victims, unlike full critical hits.
There are currently eleven ways for a player to deal consistent mini-crits to all other players:
- Attacking as a Scout with the Atomizer whilst airborne.
- Attacking as a Scout under the effects of the Crit-a-Cola.
- Attacking while under the effects of a friendly Soldier's Buff Banner.
- Shooting enemies with the Cow Mangler 5000's charged shot.
- Firing the Cow Mangler 5000 while crit boosted.
- Attacking as a Heavy under the effects of the Buffalo Steak Sandvich.
- As a Pyro, hitting an enemy with a reflected projectile (other than stickybombs and projectiles that are already crits).
- Melee hits midway through your Chargin' Targe or Splendid Screen charge.
- Activating "CRIKEY" charge with the Cleaner's Carbine.
- Hitting a headshot as Sniper using the Sydney Sleeper.
- Attacking from behind as a Scout while using the Back Scatter from around .
There are also currently five effects that force a particular player to take mini-crits from all incoming damage (See also: Marked For Death):
- Being marked by the Fan O'War
- Being an Engineer who is hauling a building with the Rescue Ranger equipped, or has done so in the last three seconds.
- Being covered in Jarate.
- Being a Soldier who has the Escape Plan active, or had it active in the last 3 seconds.
- Being a Intelligence courier in the Mannpower gamemode who has held the flag for more than 90 seconds without capturing it.
Finally, there are four ways of achieving mini-crits that require both the attacker and the target to be in a particular situation:
- Hitting an airborne enemy who was propelled airborne by an explosion with the Direct Hit.
- Shooting an airborne enemy who was propelled airborne by any source of knockback except Compression Blast with the Reserve Shooter.
- Hitting a burning enemy with the Detonator, Scorch Shot, Axtinguisher or Postal Pummeler.
- Directly impacting an enemy within half a second before a cannonball explosion with the Loose Cannon.
A mini-crit boost is the state of having all damage being dealt modified into mini-crit damage. Currently, this is achievable while under the effects of the Crit-a-Cola, an active Buff Banner, activating the Cleaner's Carbine's "CRIKEY" charge, and while under the effects of the Buffalo Steak Sandvich. When a player is mini-crit boosted from the Buff Banner, their active weapon glows a faint yellow on RED, or a faint blue-green on BLU, while the same color effect of particles swirl around their feet, and the text "Mini Crit!" appears above their health bar. Being mini-crit boosted by the Crit-a-Cola will look more like a normal crit boost, but the weapon will glow lighter.
All damage sources, including afterburn and Sentry Guns, only deal mini-crit damage when the player dealing the damage is being boosted. If the player loses the boost after firing a projectile while the projectile is in mid-flight, it will lose its status as a mini-crit. Conversely, after the Pyro sets fire to several players, returning to a mini-crit boost will immediately transform any afterburn damage to mini-crit status. Sentry Guns will only mini-crit while the Engineer is being mini-crit boosted.
- The vast majority of effects and achievements cannot tell the difference between a critical hit and a mini-crit, and as a result treat all mini-crits as regular crits. This makes it possible to gain a majority of crit-based achievements using only mini-crits.
- The "Mini Crit!" text is still displayed when combat text is enabled if a teammate assists you with a mini-crit, instead of showing the damage they dealt.
- Occasionally, when dying while being crit boosted, the particle effect and sound will still play despite not giving critical hits.
- The sound bug can be fixed by typing
snd_restartinto the console.
- The sound bug can be fixed by typing
- Sometimes, when firing a shot that is a critical, it will not play the critical sound effect. This only affects random critical hits.
- The opposite could also happen, the critical sound will play but no critical hit is fired.
- Crit indicators are still displayed even if the victim is ÜberCharged and receives no damage.
- Even when a Spy feigns death with the Dead Ringer, the "Critical Hit!" bonus-effect text will follow the cloaked Spy normally, giving away the Spy's position.
Crit MONOCULUS eyeball projectiles.