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Killicon telefrag.png
A Spy executing a Telefrag on an Engineer.
Sorry to 'pop-in' unannounced.
The Spy

A telefrag is a type of death that occurs if a player is too close to a Teleporter exit as an enemy player uses it. Any players that occupy the same space as the teleporting enemy are instantly killed and the teleport completes successfully. Multiple players can be telefragged at once if they are all inside the teleporting player's bounding box.

Telefrags deal 1000 damage and are indicated with the "unspecified death" skull and crossbones icon, with the person teleporting being credited with the damage and the kill; since telefrags are relatively rare and there are almost no signs as to one having taken place, many of them go unnoticed by bystanders (although bilaterally-unexpected telefrags are likely to be humorously noted).

There are only three known ways for a telefrag to occur:

  • A player is too close to an enemy Teleporter exit as an enemy uses it
  • A player is too close to a friendly Teleporter exit as an enemy Spy uses it
  • A player is too close to an enemy Teleporter exit as the owner Engineer teleports to it using the Eureka Effect

It is not possible to telefrag allies even when friendly fire is enabled. Players can be telefragged even if they are ÜberCharged, under the effects of Bonk! Atomic Punch, wielding the Dead Ringer, or under any other damage-reducing effect.

A particularly devious Spy strategy involves sapping an Engineer's teleporter entrance and then standing on it. If the Engineer is careless and is standing too close to the exit while removing the Sapper, the Spy will instantly teleport the moment the Sapper is removed, telefragging the Engineer and allowing the Spy to sap the Engineer's remaining buildings at his leisure. This tactic can also work in reverse; careless Spies sapping an exit may wind up being telefragged by an Engineer repairing the entrance. Similarly, Engineers can place their Teleporters at chokepoints and telefrag enemies as they walk over.


Update history

[Unknown Date]

  • Telefrags are now credited to the player teleporting, not to the Teleporter Exit.

May 29, 2009 Patch

  • Fixed Spies not being telefragged when standing on an enemy teleporter exit with the Dead Ringer enabled.

August 31, 2009 Patch

  • Fixed server log not listing telefrag kills as weapon "telefrag"

April 17, 2012 Patch

  • Fixed defense buffs reducing crush and telefrag damage

September 10, 2014 Patch

  • Fixed an exploit that involved players killing teammates via telefrag by switching to Spectator.


  • The term "telefrag" was originally coined by players of id Software's Doom and Quake games.
    • "Frag" is a real-world military slang term for "fragmentation grenade", but is also commonly used among Doom and Quake players to refer to the point awarded for a kill (whether via a grenade or not).
    • Telefragging was originally implemented in these games to prevent players from getting stuck when teleporting inside an enemy. The other potential solution — teleporters just not working if an enemy is standing at the destination — was deemed exploitable.
  • From the game's release up to an unknown date, telefrags were credited to the Teleporter Exit, not the player teleporting. Thus, one could have had a Deathcam that displays, "You have been killed by the Teleporter Exit of X"/"You have been killed by the Teleporter Exit of the late X".
  • As the damage caused by telefrags is credited to the teleporting player, any abilities that charge through damage dealt (such as Buff Banner rage) will be filled with a successful telefrag.
    • This does not include on-hit healing effects, such as the effects of Mad Milk.