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TF Soldier Strats

 by [KoQ] Snare
 
    The Soldier is your basic grunt in TF.  He is good in just about any situation, and his only weaknesses are his slow foot speed and slow reload speed.  However, his powerful rockets, killer nail grenades, 200 red armor, and his ability to rocket jump more than makes up for his shortcomings.
 

Offense

    Rockets and nail grenades make the soldier a very powerful offensive force.  Use rockets just as you would in normal DM and nail grenades in any lobby (wide-open) room.  However, what separates good soldiers from great soldiers is the use of his normal grenades and keeping your rocket launcher loaded.

    The soldiers rockets are his best weapon. They can kill most of the light classes in 1-2 shots, and most others in 3-4. One key to using them effectively, is to use the rockets explosion (proximity) damage. I tend to always shot at the enemy's feet so they are always hit by blast damage. I also try to jump up when I shot so I can shoot down better at enemy and it helps to dodge enemy fire also. The first picture shows shooting at the enemy's feet, and the second shows jumping and shooting to get a better angle.

    The soldier starts with four normal grenades so make sure you use them. I like to hold them for 1.5 secs then drop them behind me when being chased, or toss them by a corner as I pass it. If you jump as you toss a grenade, you can though it pretty far, about the length of the bridge on 2fort4. This can be good to take out sentries or hwguys that are in the flag room. Grenades can be hard to see on the ground and when used effectively, can account for alot of frags.

    Reload is a very important command as a soldier. With only four shots per clip, you have to make every shot count. You don't wanna be caught in a fire fight without all four of your shots because you didn't reload.  I reload after every little fight I am in, whether i have three rockets left in the clip or one. I also reload after every time I rocket jump unless I see an enemy as soon as I jump. Make sure to bind reload to quickly accessible key. I have a MS Intelli mouse and have reload bound to the movement of the wheel up (if you don't own this mouse, I highly recommend it. You can have 5 commands bound to it).

     Being able to rocket jump is also very important as a soldier. With them, you can bypass alot of the enemy defense, and even take out alot of the enemy by surprise to help your teammates out that have to go up the ramps. An easy way to rocket jump is to use a script.  Below is an example script:

You can insert it into your autoexec.cfg if you like -- and the bound key can also be customized to anything.   Then it is simply a matter of pressing that key to rocket jump!

On 2fort4, there are 4 good places to rocket jump (shown below):
 
(top right) The front entrance onto the sniper loft 

(bottom right) Right inside the front entrance up into the "grate" room 

(bottom left) In the main lower lobby up on to any part of the 2nd floor 

(top left) To the right of the water entrance,  up into the area by the upper respawn room

 

 
    All of these spots are affective, but I find I use the spot by the upper respawn the most simply because the soldier is an easy target for snipers, so I use the water route alot.
 

Defense

    The soldier can just about play anywhere on defense. Again, his rockets provide him with enough power to take out incoming enemies quickly, while his nail grenades can buy him time to resupply or reload. Plus, his armor allows him to absorb alot of damage while stationed on defense.

    I tend to think playing ramp defense works best as a soldier. In this position, the soldier doesn't need to worry about his speed because all the enemies have to come up the narrow ramps to him, all the while being rammed by the soldiers rockets. One particularly good setup is having two soldiers on ramp defense. Rarely will any class make it up the ramps with two soldiers raining rockets down on them.

    Soldiers also make great sentry guards. The long range of their rockets can quickly take out those demomen that like to try a sit and toss MIRV's up onto sentries and their nail grenades can keep the lobby free to give to time to regroup.

    The one place I don't suggest playing defense as a soldier is on flag defense. Not that his power is not useful here, but his slow foot speed and long reloads can mean disaster if he does not get the enemies with his first four shots. However, with back up, the soldier can be a great first line of defense at the flag.
 

Overview
 
 
+ Powerful Rockets - Slow Movement Speed
+ 200 Red Armor - Long Reload Time
+ Nail Grenades
+ Rocket Jumping Ability
 
 
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Copyright 1997 by Ryan Haney and [KoQ]