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Kill Icons
Killicon merasmus.png
Killicon merasmus2.png
Killicon merasmus3.png
Killicon merasmus4.png
Killicon fire.png
Basic Information
Health: 33,750 +2,500 for each player in the server past 10
Damage Done: Fire Spell: 20-50 +5 per level
Melee: 70
Grenade: 10-50
Affected By:
• Battalion's Backup: Yes
• Bonk! Atomic Punch: Yes
• Candy Cane: No
• Chargin' Targe: Yes
• Dead Ringer: Yes
• Gunboats: No
• Mini-crits: Yes
• ÜberCharge: Yes
Found On: Ghost Fort, Carnival of Carnage (owner and announcer), Brimstone, Gravestone, Slasher, Laughter
Cower, fools! Merasmus is here!
Merasmus the Magician

Merasmus the Magician, or simply Merasmus (also referred to as wizard, magician, The Necromancer of No Refunds, and "idiot in a dress") is an important character in the Team Fortress 2 Storyline. Merasmus has several appearances or references in the comics, hidden pages, and game maps. He has more roles in gameplay than any other non-player character.

In the Team Fortress 2 Storyline, Merasmus has a connection with Demoman in the origin of MONOCULUS; however, he most often appears as Soldier's long suffering former roommate. His appearances in comics or other media are usually related to releases of paranormal or haunted Halloween maps, with Soldier’s actions generally being the reason the mercenaries end up fighting there.

In gameplay, not only does Merasmus (stylized as "MERASMUS!") make an appearance as the boss the players must fight in Ghost Fort, Brimstone, Gravestone and Slasher, he is also the owner and host of the Carnival of Carnage, a summoner of both MONOCULUS in Eyeaduct and the Horseless Headless Horsemann in the Bumper Car games, and the keeper and wielder of Bombinomicon, which itself appears on multiple maps.

Merasmus is voiced by Nolan North.[1]


By his own claim, he is six thousand years old. While his place of birth is unknown, this age would make Merasmus's origin contemporary with the rise and fall of the Sumerian Civilization.

Not particularly a top tier wizard, the earliest available records show Merasmus to be a brewer of potions for the Scottish Drug Company; an example being his "Wizard's Brew" Hat Tonic as advertised in the August 21, 1861, issue of The Teufort Bystander on display in the Coal Town Museum. He remained in Scotland until relocating to Badlands sometime between the late 1950s and mid-1960s.

In the Bombinomicon comic, the RED Demoman, then seven years old, discovered Merasmus's castle in the Highlands while seeking work. Merasmus hired Demoman to sweep the library of his castle, but told him not to look at a certain book. Ultimately, the Demoman lost his left eye when the Bombinomicon haunted it and Merasmus was forced to remove it. Years later, the magician's tumultuous relationship with the RED Soldier was revealed, and he summoned MONOCULUS (the haunted eye) for the RED team to fight.

During the events of Soldier Needs a Home, Merasmus kicked the Soldier out of his castle for being a nuisance. When he found later that the Soldier had trashed his home and evicted him, he took on a ghostly form and attacked the Soldier's team.

Following this eviction, Merasmus left Badlands to live in a city in another area of the U.S. Southwest, where he moved in with Tom Jones, who was later murdered by Soldier. After Merasmus called the police, Miss Pauling arrived and tricked him into checking Tom Jones' pulse, and thus Merasmus was believed to be responsible for the murder and arrested.

Merasmus was imprisoned; and while in prison he received several tattoos (one of them the Soldier's class emblem) and is permitted to wear a skull hat. While continuing his practice of brewing, he relayed to the other inmates the tale of Grave Matters.

In Blood Money, Merasmus borrowed $12,000 from the Japanese Mafia to construct a Carnival. However, he forgot to construct it over an ancient burial site, and so he invites the mercenaries to collect tickets for entry to the World's Largest Strongman Machine. While at the same time, the mercenaries constantly kill each other, creating an impromptu burial ground; thereby allowing Merasmus to summon Bonzo, the evil circus god of Sumeria. At that time, he also started to set out Merasmissions.

Gargoyles and Gravel marks the second time (after Blood Money) that Merasmus ran into trouble without any help from Soldier. This time, it was the Russian mafia he owed money to, and he needed the mercenary's assistance to fill a gargoyle with souls. Heavy and Spy responded to his arrival with annoyance, but eventually the mercenaries (and Miss Pauling) decided to accept the wizard's challenge once again.

Appearances and references

Game Maps/Events
Other media


Merasmus spawns on Ghost Fort's control point between 2 minutes 30 seconds and 3 minutes 30 seconds after the round starts and there are at least 10 players playing on the server. After level 3 his respawn timer is set to every 60 seconds, but resets when Merasmus leaves. The players have 2 minutes to defeat him before he leaves. While he is alive, the point resets to neutral ownership and cannot be captured, and the both teams start truce until Merasmus leaves or is defeated. On Brimstone, after BLU has captured the next to last point, Congeriae (D), there is a chance of Merasmus appearing in the final minutes of the game, especially if BLU has trouble getting the cart to the Hellhole. On Gravestone, Merasmus appears as a mechanism for assuring that all players in the Bumper Car Race leave the aftergame.

When damageable, Merasmus's health is displayed as a bar on the screen, under the time.

When Merasmus spawns, he pushes all nearby opponents away and destroys all stickybombs around him, also knocking back all stickybombs he comes in contact with. Merasmus has a wide variety of attacks, and can teleport throughout the map. Merasmus can melee players with his staff, roll bombs at them, and perform a hellfire attack which instantly destroys Sentry Guns while also launching selected players skyward. Merasmus can also teleport to the control point and hover over the control point and use the Bombinomicon to spread bombs a wide range around the control point. Whenever Merasmus is hovering in the air while performing this attack, all damage dealt to him are critical hits. Merasmus only uses this attack if he has been struck by at least 3 or 4 or more players that have had their heads transformed into bombs.

After some time and if Merasmus is currently not disguised as a prop, the Bombinomicon chooses 1 player on both teams and transform their heads into bombs. Players cannot attack after being turned into bombs and are stuck in their humiliation pose until the bomb detonates or they are killed, but their speed is also boosted. The screen and the Bombinomicon instruct the player to find Merasmus and run into him. If the player reaches Merasmus with the bomb, it stuns him, stopping him for 2 seconds. At all times while stunned, all damage Merasmus takes is critical hits. After Merasmus is no longer stunned, he then teleports to a random spot on the map; after teleporting 2 or 3 times, he begins reading from the Bombinomicon. The player who transported the bomb becomes invulnerable, speed boosted, and crit boosted for a short time after the explosion. If the player fails to reach Merasmus in time, the bomb detonates and deals 100 damage to the player. The player is given 15 seconds to reach Merasmus with their bomb head before the bomb detonates.

Merasmus has a disguise phase where the boss health bar turns green and a bunch of random props are scattered on the map. These props bleed green liquid when attacked, distinguishing them from background elements. Players must destroy at least 70% of the props before Merasmus has a chance to appear when a prop is destroyed. Props that do not spawn Merasmus drop a large Halloween pumpkin, which any player can collect. While disguised as a prop Merasmus heals 0.1% of his health multiplied by his level-1 every second. This means at level 1 he does not heal, level 2 with 10 players heals 33.75hp/sec, level 3 with 10 players 67.5hp/sec, etc... Merasmus enters this phase if he has lost over 45% of his health since he spawned or his last disguised phase as long as he is not stunned or using the Bombinomicon. The bomb head given to players by the Bombinomicon always destroys a fake prop in a single hit if players run into it. Similar to transporting the bomb, the player who destroys the prop Merasmus appears from receives the same invulnerability, speed boost, and crit boost.

Upon Merasmus's defeat, he disappears and is replaced by the Bombinomicon. It remains on the field for a few seconds, and all players can use it to teleport to Skull Island. When the players reach the island, they can climb the hill and collect the Skull Island Topper in the cage. Entering the cage transports players back to the main field. Defeating Merasmus for the first time awards the Necromannchievement Wizards Never Prosper, while collecting the Skull Island Topper awards A Lovely Vacation Spot.

As of the November 2, 2012 Patch, Merasmus's behavior has been altered. He became easier to defeat, with various classes better able to inflict damage upon him. However, he was given the ability to level up. Like with MONOCULUS, each time he is beaten, he grows stronger in the next appearance with faster health regeneration while hiding and increased range and damage to his hellfire attack. If the players do not kill Merasmus, his level returns to 1. The Skull Island Topper tracks the highest level of Merasmus the wearer manages to defeat.

Damaging Merasmus uses slightly different damage caluclations based on a few factors:

  • The distance used in damage calculation is fixed at 512, meaning weapons always do their base damage before any other damage boosting effects take place.
  • The Soda Popper deals 50% more damage, the Shortstop 75% more, the Baby Face Blaster triple damage, and all other Scout primaries do double damage.
  • Miniguns and Sentry Guns deal half damage.
  • Sniper rifles are tripled in damage, but cannot headshot. This stacks with the critical damage caused by Merasmus being stunned or reading to nine times normal damage.
  • The Huntsman has triple damage as well as the ability to headshot him (does not stack with critical damage while stunned or reading), making it the most effective choice to take him out.
  • Spy revolvers have double damage.
  • Spy knives are always tripled in damage, and, again, this stacks with critical hits. Backstabs cannot be triggered.
  • Merasmus cannot be set on fire, made to bleed, covered in Mad Milk, Jarate, or Gas Passer, or marked for death.
  • The Dragon's Fury does not require Merasmus to be on fire to deal its boosted damage.


Main article: Community Ghost Fort strategy
Main article: Merasmus match-ups

A simple strategy is to use the Sniper's Huntsman or Fortified Compound, which deal a total maximum of 1080 damage upon headshot to Merasmus while he is stunned or spreading bombs across the map. A fully charged Sniper Rifle does 1350 damage with a fully charged headshot, but takes longer to charge than the Huntsman, making it inconvenient because of Merasmus's teleportation. The player is safe from the bombs that Merasmus spreads if the player is far away from him while still being able to attack him with the Huntsman or any other Sniper Rifle.

Related achievements

Backpack Skull Island Topper.png Necromannchievements

A Lovely Vacation Spot
A Lovely Vacation Spot
Get to Skull Island and claim your reward!

Reward: Skull Island Topper

Wizards Never Prosper
Wizards Never Prosper

Update history

October 26, 2012 Patch (Spectral Halloween Special)
  • Introduced MERASMUS!

October 27, 2012 Patch

  • Added audio lines for Merasmus to use when he attacks.

November 2, 2012 Patch

  • MERASMUS! has leveled up at WizardCon!
    • "The Skull Island Topper" now tracks the highest level of Merasmus the owner has helped defeat
    • Increased Engineer, Scout, Pyro and Heavy damage against Merasmus
    • Increased Soldier and Demoman damage against Merasmus while he is in hiding
  • Updated the health bar for Merasmus and Monoculus

October 29, 2013 Patch (Scream Fortress 2013)

  • Lowered Merasmus's base health.

November 6, 2013 Patch

  • Fixed a bug that allowed Merasmus bomb-heads to be passable between enemies.

October 29, 2014 Patch (Scream Fortress 2014)

  • [Undocumented] Added a bandage to Merasmus's now-missing right pinky finger.

October 12, 2016 Patch

  • Fixed Merasmus not being stunned by bomb-head players on community Halloween maps.
  • Fixed energy weapons not hitting Merasmus props.

October 21, 2016 Patch (Scream Fortress 2016)

  • Updated some Merasmus audio files that weren't playing properly.

November 10, 2016 Patch

  • Updated the spawn/death sounds for Monoculus and Merasmus to remove the Horseless Headless Horsemann sound effects.

June 21, 2022 Patch

  • Fixed laggy animations on Halloween bosses, skeletons, ghosts and other ghoul-like beings


  • Ever since truces were added (on Ghost Fort, but not other maps Merasmus appears as a boss on), Merasmus's long-distance attack no longer sets players on fire, but still triggers the voice responses for being put on fire.
    • When Merasmus uses his long-distance attack, the Pyro takes damage from the initial attack, but remains visually on fire for the duration of the afterburn. The afterburn deals no damage; however, the Pyro can be specially affected by weapons that deal critical hits and mini-crits on burning players (such as the Sun-on-a-Stick or Detonator) as if the Pyro was on fire.
  • If Merasmus targets an ÜberCharged player to set on fire, the player is ignited and uses a "Fire!" voice response. The afterburn lasts as long as normal fire would when a Medic's beam is trained on the player and deals no damage.
  • If Merasmus spawns after the round ends, the server crashes upon map change.


  • Merasmus is the magician that the RED Soldier angered, causing both teams to be sent back in time to DeGroot Keep.
  • Merasmus's model uses the Sniper's animations[2], though he uses the Heavy's when the dance card is selected.
  • Marasmus is a medical condition characterized by emaciation and wasting, generally caused by malnutrition. The name of the disease in turn comes from the Greek word marasmos, meaning "decay". Zepheniah Mann stated in his will he contracted this disease while traveling to his new land in America.
  • Merasmus's Prop spell is a reference to a community game mode called Prop Hunt. Prop Hunt is a server-side mod where the players on one team are disguised as props and find a place to hide, and the other team searches for them.
  • In Grave Matters, Merasmus's arms are covered with tattoos, one appearing in the form of Soldier's class emblem; these tattoos are not seen in the preceding Doom-Mates or the following Blood Money.
  • A running gag in the comic series is certain strangers mistaking Merasmus's unconventional robe as a “dress” and so address him as "ma'am" or "lady."
  • Merasmus's voice actor, Nolan North, was born on the 31st of October, the same day as Halloween.
  • In Blood Money, Merasmus claims he borrowed $12,000 from the Japanese mafia. A bandage was subsequently added to Merasmus's right pinky on his in-game model, a reference to Yubitsume, a Japanese ritual used by the yakuza.



  1. Email from a Valve employee
  2. Screenshot showing Merasmus using other animations from Sniper.

See also