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 Team Fortress 2 - Spy Detection Guide

Team Fortress 2 - Spy Detection Guide

Team Fortress 2
Spy Detection Guide/FAQ
By whirlmaster
Version 1.25

Table of Contents
1.0 Introduction
1.1 Copyright Stuff
1.2 Credits

2.0 What is Spy detection?

3.0 Meet the Spy

4.0 Spy detection Techniques
4.1 You can't double jump?
4.2 Ouch!Your solid!
4.3 There's no need to jump
4.4 Do I know you?
4.5 Deja Vu?
4.6 This doesn't belong here
4.7 Something invisible here
4.8 What's up with my rockets?
4.9 Floating droplets
4.10 You die too easy
4.11 Why aren't you shooting?

5.0 Spy behavior
5.1 When Not in Enemy Lands
5.2 When sapping buildings
5.3 When Retreating
5.4 Favourite Spy disguises

6.0 Specific Class Info
6.1 Pyros
6.2 Snipers
6.3 Heavies
6.4 Medics
6.5 Engineers

7.0 Conclusion

1.0 Introduction
OK,first of all,this is my first guide/FAQ so please forgive me if it 
isn't what you expect.I am NOT the best TF2 player in the whole world
but I do consider myself an average player.If you have any questions,
tips,anything to add,constructive criticism,typos etc.,please feel
free to send me an email to do NOT accept
flame,spam,unconstructive criticism such as,"Your guide sux!!!11!!"
without any explanation whatsoever.This guide assumes you have 
mastered the basics of this game.

1.1 Copyright Stuff
Copyright 2010 whirlmaster

Feel free to use this guide for any use.I,frankly,don't care.You can
print it out or post it on your website or anything.The only 
requirement I have is that you give credit that I wrote this guide,
because,well,I DID write this guide.

1.2 Credits
-Valve,for creating TF2
-GameFAQs for putting this guide on their website
-TF2 Wiki and TF2 Strategy for additional info
-Anyone who has helped me

2.0 What is Spy Detection?
What is Spy detection you ask?Here,I will explain the term clearly and
explain the usefulness of Spy detection.Spy detection,is the act of 
checking,and if possible,eliminating a Spy.

 Why do you do this you ask?Firstly,you are being a credit for your
team.For example,Spies can destroy all the buildings your team's Engy
has built.They can backstab that Heavy over there who is stopping the
enemy team from advancing.By using Spy detection,you can hopefully,
save your team and yourself a lot of trouble.

3.0 Meet the Spy
To defeat an enemy,we must understand him.Yes,it sounds cliche but I
can't help it.In this section,I'll cover all the capabillities of the
Spy and all the weapons at his disposal.

Basic Info:
Health:125(185 when buffed by a Medic)

As you can see,the Spy has one of the least health in TF2,along with
the Engineer,Scout and Sniper.His speed is quite average,losing only
to a Medic(although the difference isn't that huge) and the Scout.His
speed is similar to that of the Pyro,Engineer and Sniper.His faster 
than Demoman,Soldier and Heavy.

Ammo loaded:6
Ammo carried:24
Damage range:Base-40

The revolver is the Spy's primary weapon.It's a simple weapon,able to
deal decent damage and a 6 ammo clip.Spies rarely use this weapon,
other than using it to cover his retreat or attacking Razorback 
Snipers.The revolver is fairly accurate that some Spies have been
known to "snipe" with the gun.There exists a Sam & Max variant known 
as the Big Kill which apart from design,is similar to the revolver in
every aspect.

Ammo loaded:6
Ammo carried:24
Damage range:Base-34

The Ambassador(Amby for short) is the Spy's unlockable primary weapon.
It's heavily decorated and bigger than the Revolver.Used normally,it
deals less damage than the Revolver.However,its trump card lies in the
fact it crits on a headshot,consider it something like a mini-sniper
rifle.It has a high recoil and as such,is not suitable for 'sniping'.
Unless their aim is REALLY good,Spies equiped with this weapon are
generally easier to kill in a firefight compared to the revolver.

1.Electro sapper
Ammo loaded:1
Ammo carried:-
Damage Range:-

The electro sapper does no damage but its strength lies that,it can
disable and slowly destroy buildings when planted on them.It has no
ammo limitations,therefore,a Spy is able to plant as many as he likes.
Two whacks from the Engineer's wrench or one whack from a friendly
Pyro's Homewrecker destroys the Electro sapper.In theory,a Spy can
plant faster than an Engineer can destroy them.Note that using the
Electro Sapper will not remove the disguise if said Spy is disguised.

PDA Items:
1.Disguise Kit

The disguise kit allows the Spy to disguise as an enemy teammate.
Attacking will remove the disguise.Spies are able to disguise as 
friendly teammates too.

2.Invisiblity watch
Upon clicking Mouse2(right-click),the Spy will be invisible for a 
duration of 10 seconds.It takes one full second for them to cloak and
another to decloak.Collecting ammo can refill the cloak meter.Note
that attacking or sapping while cloaked is impossible.Spies have to 
decloak before attacking.

3.Cloak and Dagger

Similar to the Invisibility Watch,it however,CANNOT collect ammo to
refill the meter.The CnD cloaks a Spy indefinitely if the Spy is 
standing still.It has a faster recharge rate.

4.Dead Ringer

Unlike the other watches,the DR does not automatically render Spies
invisible.If a Spy is hit while carrying out DR,he will drop a fake
corpse complete with kill icon while the Spy is invisible.It can
collect ammo to refill the meter and it has 6.5 seconds of invisibilty.

1.Butterfly Knife
Ammo loaded:-
Ammo carried:-
Damage Range:Base-40

The true weapon of Spies.Attacking enemies from the back with this 
weapon is an instant kill,since backstabs deal 450 damage.Even Heavies
will die from one backstab.

4.0 Spy detection techniques
There are various ways to detect Spies.I will list the techniques 
below.While shooting a disguised Spy will injure the Spy,randomly 
shooting everyone you see is a bad idea and a bad way to save ammo.
However,despite what technique you use,when you see a Spy,remember to 
alert your teammates if you didn't kill the Spy.X2 will send a voice
command "SPY!" around or simply typing or using the mic might help.

4.1 You can't double jump? 
Spies disguised as Scouts are extremely easy to find.As Spies are 
slower than Scouts,the disguised Spy would look like a slow Scout.The
difference is easily recognizable.Also,Spies disguised as Scouts can't
double jump and therefore a Spy.Put these Spies out of their misery.

4.2 Ouch!Your solid!
Teammates are able to pass through each other but enemies can't.If you
can't pass through a teammate,he's obviously a disguised Spy.Kill him
quick,no questions asked.

4.3 There's no need to jump
Similarly,teammates can pass through friendly buildings.If a teammate
must jump over a friendly building to proceed,their a Spy.The only
exception is the Engineer that built the buildings.Match the Engy's
name with the buildings.Looking at friendly buildings will say who
built them.Still,its worth checking everyone who can't pass through
friendly buildings.

4.4 Do I know you?
By pressing the TAB key,the scoreboard will reveal itself.In the
scoreboard,you are able to what class your teammates are currently
playing by looking at the icons next to their names.Because enemies
don't know what classes there are in the enemy teams,Spies will
occasionally disguise as a class the enemy team does not have.If cases
like these occur,the disguise kit will randomly give the Spy a 
disguise name.If you a teammate whose class doesn't fix the class 
stated on their scoreboard,their a Spy!For example,your teammate Tom 
is a Demoman but you bump into Tom as a Soldier?In that case,the
Soldier-Tom is an imposter.

4.5 Deja Vu?
If you just passed a teammate yet see him again,he's probably a Spy.
For example,your heading for the enemy intel in 2fort.You pass Tom
at the resupply room yet you suddenly run into him again at the 
bridge?He's probably a Spy.

4.6 This doesn't belong here
If you see a teammate who doesn't belong where their situated,their
most probably a Spy.For example,your an Engy and your building a base
at your intel in 2fort.You suddenly see a Scout enter.You think,Hey?
Aren't Scouts supposed to capture the enemy intel?Shoot that Scout
then,he's intended role is probably a Spy.

4.7 Something invisible here
Your walking on a hallway devoid of people.Suddenly,you can't pass!
That means there's an invisible Spy around here.Start shooting around
you and place your back on a wall.

4.8 What's up with my rockets?
Similarly to teammates,friendly rockets and grenades can pass through
teammates.If it somehow hits one of them,their a Spy.If it hits 
something in midair,chances are there's a Spy invisible.Invisible 
Spies,when hit will momentarily flash out their team colours(red for
RED Spies and blue for BLU Spies).

4.9 Floating droplets
Invisible Spies who have recently been underwater will drop water
droplets when on land.If you see water droplets where they shouldn't 
be,rest assured,there's a Spy around.

4.10 You die too easy
This applies to Dead Ringer Spies.When you hit a Spy with a non-lethal
attack and he dies,he's probably still there,using the Dead Ringer.For
example,you shoot at a Spy with your Engineer's pistol.He dies.Weird
much?He's probably invisible somewhere thanks to the Dead Ringer.Shoot
around.While there IS a slight chance that the Spy is *this* close to
death and you somehow managed to kill him,the odds are there aren't.

4.11 Why aren't you shooting?
Disguised Spies lose their disguise the moment they attack.Therefore,
they stick around and never fire a single bullet until they reach
their intended target.If you see a teammate who isn't firing at all
during firefights,never Spychecking etc. they're most probably Spies.
5.0 Spy Behavior
Spies have a general behavior pattern.Learning what they would do next
for detecting Spies who are clever enough not to be detected by 
your teammates.

5.1 When Not in Enemy Lands
When Spies have just spawned,their behavior patterns are pretty
predictable.For poor Spies,they would remain as they are or disguise
as an enemy instantly.For capable Spies though,they would disguise as
a friendly teammate or cloak and once they reach enemy grounds,then
they will uncloak and start wrecking havok.

5.2 When Sapping Buildings
When Spies sap buildings,they will disguise as friendly teammates as
to ensure the sentry gun doesn't blow them up into a million 
smithreens.Because using the sappers doesn't blow their disguise,
they will try to sap the sentries before stabbing the Engineers.

If the Engineer was not with his buildings at that time,the Spy would
most probably sap the buildings and stay cloaked or in disguise,
waiting for the Engineer to return and upon that,stab.If your the
said Engineer,shoot everywhere and never leave your back covered by a

5.3 When Retreating
Spies who are retreating will forget about their objective and often
die quickly while running.They might try to return fire with their
revolver or Ambassador.They can't do much damage unless your low on
health.If your confident that you can take down the Spy,go for it.

5.4 Favourite Spy disguises
Spies love to disguise as:
The first two disguises-Pyros and Demomen-are the favourite disguises
for most Spies.Due to the behavior of the Pyro and Demoman,which
tend to wander around their base alone,defending,they make good 
choices for Spies.

The last two disguises-Snipers and Engineers-are situational.They will
often disguise as those two when their in close reach of a Sniper spot
or Engineer nest.For example,the sniper decks on 2fort.
6.0 Specific Class Info
This section is for specific classes that are targetted by Spies more
often.Each of the classes some general tips of avoiding getting
backstabbed by Spies.

6.1 Pyros
Although not often targetted by Spies,Pyros play an important part in
Spy detection they deserve a section of their own.

The Spy's disguise kit and invisibilty cloak seems to be highly
flammable because for some reason,even a puff of fire will reveal the
disguised/invisible Spy and leave him burning with the afterburn.And,
for a class of 125 hp,afterburn is NOT a good thing.

Also,most of the Spies have some phobia of Pyros.Myself,having played
Spy,have feared the almighty Pyro for his flamethrower.As such,most
Spies tend to avoid Pyros,swerving to sides and sidestepping Pyros.

The Pyro's new unlockable,the Homewrecker is able to destroy enemy
sappers in one hit,thus making Pyro a helpful Engineer bodyguuard.

As a Pyro,use the above to your advantage.Randomly puffing a teammate
with fire will reveal if the said teammate is or is not a Spy.Also,go
out on your way to burn every teammate who avoids you for some reason,
as they are almost ALWAYS Spies.If you see an Engineer,go on and help
him by puffing fire at the nearby surroundings.If a Spy is sapping
friendly buildings and you have Homewrecker equiped,destroy the sapper
AND the Spy.The Engineer would thank you to the heavens for that.

Note that as Pyros often wander the base alone,spychecking or 
guarding the base,they are often favourite Spy disguises.Puff some
flame at any Pyro you see.

6.2 Snipers
Snipers are one of the highly targetted Spy victims.As Snipers spend
almost all their time scoped in and scoring for headshots,few pay
attention to their surroundings,thus giving Spies a free kill along 
with eliminating a key enemy defence.Below are some tips to not let
you get backstabbed so frequently:

1.After taking a couple of shots,retreat for another place.Because,by
the time you headshot your third victim or so,they enemy will be 
alerted of your presence and Spies would zoom in on you like bees to
honey.Moving to a new location,at least,slightly increases your 
survival rate.

2.NEVER equip the Razorback.The Razorback is a Sniper unlockable that
replaces your secondary weapon,the SMG or Jarate for a useless piece
of wood that protects you from one backstab.Any Spies above average
will simply pull out his revolver or Amby and shoot you down.

3.When cornered,don't be afraid to use your other weapons!When your
ambushed by enemy Spies,use your SMG to gun the Spy down.If you have
Jarate equiped,throw it on the Spy to prevent him from cloaking and
cut him down with your kukri.

4.Have your back against the wall.This simple move will effectively 
increase the chance of you survivng without wasting the secondary
weapon slot by equiping the Razorback.Backstabs would be difficult and
if lucky,the Spy would simply decide there are other easier prey out
there and leave you alone.If your unlucky,he would pull out his
revolver and shoot you but hopefully,that would be enough time for 
you or your teammates to kill that tricky Spy.

5.Be alert of your teammates reporting Spies or look if any teammates
have died from backstabs or revolver shots.If so,then you should
heighten your alert and strafe around frequently,changing locations
after a single shot etc.

6.3 Heavies
Heavies are the slowest class in the game and the fact they dole out
large amounts of damage makes them a highly sought-after target by
Spies.Following the simple tips below would make your Heavy experience
less of a frustration.

1.Constantly check behind!Fire off a couple of shotgun rounds behind
after a few minutes to check for Spies.You should always move around,
strafing,jumping etc. when not fighting.

2.When your munching on your tasty Sandvich,be sure to stand with your
back against the wall.When eating the Sandvich,your immobile and make
loud sounds(nom nom nom nom) and any Spy in the vicinity would kill
you with a backstab instantly.

3.If your paired with a Medic,check to see if your Medic has been 
killed by result of a Spy.If so,your the next in line.Start spraying
rounds like random and hopefully,you'll avenge your fallen comrade.

4.Stay in the middle!Heavies are a large class,by sticking in the 
middle of a narrow hallway,you would,hopefully,deter any Spies from
coming into that direction for fear of bumping you.At the least,they
might shoot at you with their revolver but the chances of your back
getting stabbed are lower.

6.4 Medics
Medics are also highly-targetted victims as your ability to make 
teammates live longer on the battlefield is highly invaluable.If your
paired with a Heavy,your chances of getting backstabbed is higher as
the Spy would toss you or the Heavy in as a bonus!

1.Look back frequently,you need only hold the button on the Medigun
at your teammate,feel free to look around once in awhile for any
suspicious teammates.

2.When attacked,RUN!Yes,your speed is faster than the Spy and as 
such,your able to maintain the upper hand if you run.Pull out your
medigun and FIRE!

3.Jump around and strafe every so often to throw off Spies who are
stalking you.

4.In a worst case scenario that you DO die from a backstab and your
paired up with a Heavy,Soldier etc.Alert your buddy immediately before
he/she suffers the same fate as you.

6.5 Engineers
The most frustrating thing as an Engineer is that after painstakingly
building a sentry nest,your buildings all get sapped by some Spy you
mistaked as your friend.The tips below deal with what to do when your
buildings are sapped.

1.Prevention is better than cure.Kindly request a nearby Engineer or
Pyro to help you guard your buildings while your away from your

2.If your away and your buildings are getting sapped,when you reach
the buildings see if there are any nearby teammates around.If there
are,shoot each and every single one of them.One might be a disguised
Spy waiting for you to come back and backstab you.

3.If the above scenario occurs and there are no teammates around,their
probably invisible or have fled.Take no chances and shoot your 
surroundings for awhile.

4.Kill the Spy before removing the sappers.No buildings and an alive
Engineer beats no buildings and a dead Engineer.

5.If the Spy reveals himself in a failed backstab on you,you can 
consider removing the sapper from your sentry gun.

6.Have your back against the wall all of the time,crafty Spies may
stab you first before sapping your buildings.

7.If possible,place your buildings in places your teammates must go
through.As teammates can pass through friendly buildings,if a teammate
cannot,he's a disguised Spy.

8.If you and a fellow Engineer have established buildings next to each
other and the fellow Engy's buildings are being sapped while he's 
away,do him a favour and destroy the sappers and the Spy.

7.0 Conclusion
The guide has reached its end.I hope you enjoy my guide and have 
learnt a thing or two.If you have any questions,things to add,typos
I made etc. you can mail them to like
stated above.Please note I don't check my email often.If one week has
passed and you haven't received a reply,send it again as I have most
likely accidently deleted it.
Enjoy TF2ing.


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