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Killicon sniperriflehs.png
Boom. Headshot.
The Sniper

A headshot is a successful attack to the head of an enemy with a scoped shot from the Sniper Rifle, Bazaar Bargain, Machina, Hitman's Heatmaker, AWPer Hand, and Shooting Star, as well as a fully charged shot from the Classic (scoped or otherwise). A Huntsman/Fortified Compound arrow or an Ambassador bullet can also deal headshots. Headshots deal guaranteed Critical hits; unless a damage reducing effect is active, a fully charged headshot from the Sniper Rifle will instantly kill any class, including an overhealed Heavy. The hitbox for the head of any class will always remain centered on the Y axis of rotation, no matter what the onscreen appearance may dictate.

Killing an enemy with a headshot yields an extra half point, for a total of 1.5 points per headshot kill. Scoring a lethal headshot with a Huntsman arrow yields an additional half point, for a total of 2 points.

Items related to headshot

List of items related to headshots
Primary Sniper Rifle AWPer Hand
  • Can only perform headshots after waiting 200 milliseconds while scoped in.
Sniper Rifle AWPer Hand
Machina Shooting Star
Machina Shooting Star
Bazaar Bargain Hitman's Heatmaker
Bazaar Bargain Hitman's Heatmaker
Huntsman Fortified Compound
Huntsman Fortified Compound
  • Can only perform headshots when fully charged.
Secondary Ambassador
  • Can only perform headshot when at full accuracy.
  • After every shot, the Ambassador is unable to deal headshots for 0.95 seconds.
  • Headshots beyond 1200 Hammer units will deal normal damage instead of a critical hit.
Action Grappling Hook
  • Headshots with this item deal 2 damage, while regular hits only deal 1 damage.
Grappling Hook

Related achievements

Achieved.png General

Grey Matter
Grey Matter
Get 25 Headshots as a Sniper.

Leaderboard class sniper.png Sniper

Parting Shot
Parting Shot
Headshot an enemy player the moment his invulnerability wears off.

Socket to Him
Socket to Him
Headshot an enemy Demoman.
Self-destruct Sequence
Self-destruct Sequence
Headshot 10 enemy Snipers.

Leaderboard class spy.png Spy

While using the Ambassador, kill 20 Snipers with a headshot.
Who's Your Daddy?
Who's Your Daddy?
Headshot 3 Scouts with the Ambassador.

Kill icons

Unused kill icons

Update history

October 2, 2007 Patch

  • Fixed headshots not always registering for crouched players.

December 17, 2009 Patch (WAR! Update)

  • Added headshot death animations.


  • There is a 25% chance that a player killed by a headshot will enter a special death animation appropriate to that class (for example, the Pyro does a backflip).
    • Any sword or axe for the Demoman and Half-Zatoichi for the Soldier will also have a 25% chance for the player killed to enter the special death animation, since these weapons also remove the enemy's head after a successful kill.