Spy Meta - Has it changed?

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Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  Carlotso25 on Thu Jan 30, 2014 12:26 am

We had this discussion a while back that I thought was pretty good. Would love to get it up again.

Basically, there are a lot of opinions on the Spy class when it comes to playing it at the top level. Old traditionalists such as Frank West will swear by the tried and tested method we all know and love. Uncloaking at the right times, calling out info, poking some mo'fuckers in the back and giving your team huge advantages at times with the right pick or sap at the right moment. This is what has been widely regarded as the common Spy meta.

However there is a lot of debate when it comes to whether this is the most efficient way to play the class in Highlander. Spies such as Evan or EU's own Solid tend to come along the opinion that a traditional Spy playstyle is too inconsistent to warrant playing it full time. Therefore to adjust, they focus on survivability with the Dead Ringer and Spycicle, and using their gun as their primary means of killing people. They work mostly on killing flank classes and low health targets so as to slowly gain their team the advantage. Almost like a second scout. After all, spychecking has little to no impact if you're just gonna shoot em every time you see em. This is a new take on the Spy meta that some players believe Spies should adjust to for high level comp.

We came to a consensus that a traditional style comes across as Inconsistent large benefits and a gun heavy style as Consistent small benefits. There still is debate though. Some spies will argue that the kills a gun heavy spy gets make little impact on the game due to them being low and out of the fight anyhow, and that the style attempts to make the Spy good at something he is not naturally good at. Some spies argue that your aim and your skill at your gun is much more reliable than trying for a stab that has no guarantee it will hit due to how paranoid a target can be. Not to mention that extra DM is always a good thing.

What do you think? Is one style superior over the other for any reason? Is it perfectly fine for a Spy to be entirely on one end of the spectrum and perform just as well in a high comp setting? Or is a healthy mix of the two always the better option in any situation? Discuss!
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  SLASh on Thu Jan 30, 2014 5:27 am

Both have adventages, and disadventages. The best would be, if people could use both in a kinda balanced way, imo.
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  SilentNinja on Thu Jan 30, 2014 12:15 pm

There are alot of factores a spys "skill" is messured from, nontheless think that if you have a constant good aim, gunspy is most likely to be the best thing you can do. If your aim isnt good/constantly good enough, you´ll just end up wasting time and fail very hard.
Result: No wonder the spy meta is like that when there are just a few people with amazing aim (Solid, Evan for example)
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  SLASh on Thu Jan 30, 2014 12:30 pm

SilentNinja wrote:There are alot of factores a spys "skill" is messured from, nontheless think that if you have a constant good aim, gunspy is most likely to be the best thing you can do. If your aim isnt good/constantly good enough, you´ll just end up wasting time and fail very hard.
Result: No wonder the spy meta is like that when there are just a few people with amazing aim (Solid, Evan for example)
Nha. Anybody can change whenever they want. Practise makes perfect, or almost.
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  Villdjack on Thu Jan 30, 2014 1:29 pm

SLASh wrote:
SilentNinja wrote:There are alot of factores a spys "skill" is messured from, nontheless think that if you have a constant good aim, gunspy is most likely to be the best thing you can do. If your aim isnt good/constantly good enough, you´ll just end up wasting time and fail very hard.
Result: No wonder the spy meta is like that when there are just a few people with amazing aim (Solid, Evan for example)
Nha. Anybody can change whenever they want. Practise makes perfect, or almost.
1v1 me spy mge

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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  SLASh on Thu Jan 30, 2014 1:40 pm

Villdjack wrote:
SLASh wrote:
SilentNinja wrote:There are alot of factores a spys "skill" is messured from, nontheless think that if you have a constant good aim, gunspy is most likely to be the best thing you can do. If your aim isnt good/constantly good enough, you´ll just end up wasting time and fail very hard.
Result: No wonder the spy meta is like that when there are just a few people with amazing aim (Solid, Evan for example)
Nha. Anybody can change whenever they want. Practise makes perfect, or almost.
1v1 me spy mge
Okay.
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  SilentNinja on Thu Jan 30, 2014 3:07 pm

SLASh wrote:
SilentNinja wrote:There are alot of factores a spys "skill" is messured from, nontheless think that if you have a constant good aim, gunspy is most likely to be the best thing you can do. If your aim isnt good/constantly good enough, you´ll just end up wasting time and fail very hard.
Result: No wonder the spy meta is like that when there are just a few people with amazing aim (Solid, Evan for example)
Nha. Anybody can change whenever they want. Practise makes perfect, or almost.
Get as good as Solid, show me a video of you then i will believe your statement. If not, invalid argument.
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  Schweppes on Thu Jan 30, 2014 3:45 pm

Both are valid, whatever works for you and your team
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  SilentNinja on Thu Jan 30, 2014 3:55 pm

Schweppes wrote:Both are valid, whatever works for you and your team
Can only agree Wink
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  RaF on Thu Jan 30, 2014 4:10 pm

Properly played, CnD gunspy is I think by far the best way to play spy.

With the spycicle you can escape and live, with the CnD you can intel and time your stabs. Then just shoot heads and play flanks whenever you're around and then go and do the traditional spy part. Invis can work as well if the enemy has momentumm
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  pinkrabbit on Thu Jan 30, 2014 4:24 pm

SilentNinja wrote: If your aim isnt good/constantly good enough, you´ll just end up wasting time and fail very hard.

You won't reach top divs if your aim isn't great

SilentNinja wrote: when there are just a few people with amazing aim (Solid, Evan for example)

People are lazy. How many spies do you know who actually make a habit of improving their aim daily?

The aim of the Lenny/Solid style is to minimise luck. They rely on their well-practiced aim and can evade any dangerous scenario using the DR and Spycicle.

The CND + revolver is to maximise self-dependence. Your cloak isn't affected by external factors, neither is your aim.

Getting good at any game is always about minimising luck and maximising abilities in areas of self-dependence.

Also there are loads of spies better than Frank West.

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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  SilentNinja on Thu Jan 30, 2014 4:56 pm

pinkrabbit wrote:
SilentNinja wrote: If your aim isnt good/constantly good enough, you´ll just end up wasting time and fail very hard.

You won't reach top divs if your aim isn't great

SilentNinja wrote: when there are just a few people with amazing aim (Solid, Evan for example)

People are lazy. How many spies do you know who actually make a habit of improving their aim daily?
1. I was taking that on the amby for most instance, but aim is very important in general, sorry, shouldve been more precise.
2. Actually none, just when i think back to the "old novus" where some people like Polar actually made training seasons for aim Wink
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  Carlotso25 on Thu Jan 30, 2014 5:03 pm

pinkrabbit wrote:People are lazy. How many spies do you know who actually make a habit of improving their aim daily?

Grenja, me, RaF, Polarbear, Viildjack, K4yzer, and many others I can't think of right now.
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  frownybrownee on Thu Jan 30, 2014 5:14 pm

Ambasedor is gud if u can aim
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  Villdjack on Thu Jan 30, 2014 6:14 pm

frownybrownee wrote:Ambasedor is gud if u can aim

give this man a medal

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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  SilentNinja on Thu Jan 30, 2014 7:10 pm

Villdjack wrote:
frownybrownee wrote:Ambasedor is gud if u can aim

give this man a medal
Best amby desc EU.
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  PaNissanic on Fri Jan 31, 2014 2:51 am

amby op if you can aim with it

But, back on topic, in my opinion, the spy meta has definitely changed. Today, there are a lot more weapons which have an effect to counter spies than...say a few years ago. When the game was released, spy relied primarily on stealth, because you only had a 9 second cloak, and a disguise kit to help you behind the enemy. In spy vs. sniper update, the potential increased, where you can make the enemy come to you, and you can also use DR as another way to get behind. Ambassador also turned into godsend in situations where you'd normally die/wouldn't get the pick. Trickstabs also became a thing for spy, showing off flashy movements and becoming a class to be feared of. Sadly, the magic of these glorious items are dying, now with spy becoming such a popular class, people are getting adjusted to and recognizing these fancy moves. So for me, it's back to the basics of stealth. Sure, we can still pull off trickstabs and stuff like that every once and a while, but we don't get them as much now. Ugh, I should really go to bed.

TL;DR, yes it did change.
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  Isil on Sat Feb 01, 2014 10:21 am

Meta has changed in favour of Gun Spy. We can't deny it.
Gunspy is more reliable and at high level, players tend to pay attention to spies, watching their back or following calls. It's really hard to have these backstabs.

And sadly for those who rely on knife like me, I have to admit that gun spy is better.
Because they still manage to have great picks AND a lot of picks.

Here a proof: http://www.vanillatf2.org/2014/01/tf2-by-the-numbers-etf2l-highlander-season-5-review/

pinkrabbit wrote: You won't reach top divs if your aim isn't great

Nope. I played prem and I don't have a great aim.
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  pinkrabbit on Sat Feb 01, 2014 2:47 pm

Isil wrote:



pinkrabbit wrote: You won't reach top divs if your aim isn't great

Nope. I played prem and I don't have a great aim.

Isil wrote:And sadly for those who rely on knife like me, I have to admit that gun spy is better.

You understand the point I'm making
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  Carlotso25 on Sat Feb 01, 2014 5:25 pm

pinkrabbit wrote:You understand the point I'm making
True, but I think he was just pointing out that isn't entirely impossible like your post implied. Just incredibly recommended Very Happy

Also, those stats are very interesting.
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  Isil on Sat Feb 01, 2014 6:24 pm

Oh I'm available for mge spy if you want. I want to rely on my aim on certain maps.
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  _kayzer_ on Tue Feb 04, 2014 12:17 am

@Vildjack and @SLASh fyte me mge 1v1

@Pinkrabbit spoke the truth - get ride of luckbiased things like stabs (valve need's to fix backstab registration) + everyone is expecting a stab no one is expecting a double headshot

@Carlotso Not daily but 2/3 times a week with mge/tr_aim + net_fakelag

@frownybrownee give him two medals

@Isil playing prem (as a 3rd choice spy) or being prem quality is a total diferent matter - hurri, evokje, and some other spies that played prem never been prem material, same goes to EU and NA plat imo, flame me if you won't, I don't care, I'm not prem material also. fyte me mge algo, it would be nice to do some amby v amby Smile

@ALL having great DM helps a lot, but having great GAMESENSE and play with your team, not by yourself is the key

EDIT: just play what makes you feel comfortable and the way it makes you happy, at the end of the day its just a game
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  Sqrt(-1) on Sat Feb 08, 2014 1:11 am

I'm late to the party, but here's my thoughts.
The unfortunate thing is that the basic spy play, ie the cloak, stab, and die spy is getting pretty predictable. I'm not saying that it doesn't work, but it's not as effective nowadays as it was, say, a year or two ago, and it may be that in another couple of years, opponents will be able to shut down the spy class even more effectively than right now.
However, the gunspy style of play is relatively fresh, and more consistent. I believe that the metagame will slowly shift towards the gunspy style of play.
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  Bighomer on Wed Feb 19, 2014 12:11 pm

some comments on the to


Carlotso25 wrote:
Basically, there are a lot of opinions on the Spy class when it comes to playing it at the top level. Old traditionalists such as Frank West will swear by the tried and tested method we all know and love. Uncloaking at the right times, calling out info, poking some mo'fuckers in the back and giving your team huge advantages at times with the right pick or sap at the right moment. This is what has been widely regarded as the common Spy meta.
I'll sign that. Imo, getting the right picks > additional damage.
Creating paranoia and distracting certain players is also something that is often ignored nowadays.

Carlotso25 wrote:
However there is a lot of debate when it comes to whether this is the most efficient way to play the class in Highlander. Spies such as Evan or EU's own Solid tend to come along the opinion that a traditional Spy playstyle is too inconsistent to warrant playing it full time. Therefore to adjust, they focus on survivability with the Dead Ringer and Spycicle, and using their gun as their primary means of killing people. They work mostly on killing flank classes and low health targets so as to slowly gain their team the advantage. Almost like a second scout. After all, spychecking has little to no impact if you're just gonna shoot em every time you see em. This is a new take on the Spy meta that some players believe Spies should adjust to for high level comp.
I'd go the other way and say that playing gun spy 24/7 is not effective.
Depending on the map (precisely, what part of the map you're at and where the team's are holding), adapting a gun heavy playstyle may be more appropriate. But dismissing all stealth, hit and run approaches because you're too focused on your aim is dismissing some of your most effective and reliable options. That doesn't change in high divs either

Carlotso25 wrote:
We came to a consensus that a traditional style comes across as Inconsistent large benefits and a gun heavy style as Consistent small benefits. There still is debate though. Some spies will argue that the kills a gun heavy spy gets make little impact on the game due to them being low and out of the fight anyhow, and that the style attempts to make the Spy good at something he is not naturally good at. Some spies argue that your aim and your skill at your gun is much more reliable than trying for a stab that has no guarantee it will hit due to how paranoid a target can be. Not to mention that extra DM is always a good thing.
Here I'd also argue that neither gun spy nor "traditional" spy is really consistent. That is, you can mess both up. Or not.
Extra DM is usually a good thing. If both heavies are fighting 1v1, for example, your additional damage can be what wins your team the fight and thus the mid/ round whatever. But you could also use the distraction and get stabs. Or pick off the cowards/ weak targets who retreat so they won't come back for some time.
Imo you can't say that one approach is better than one but rather you have to decide every time.
Also, if you don't kill your target he'll just grab some health and all you did was delay him for a few seconds while you might be dead then. Benefits?

Carlotso25 wrote:
What do you think? Is one style superior over the other for any reason? Is it perfectly fine for a Spy to be entirely on one end of the spectrum and perform just as well in a high comp setting? Or is a healthy mix of the two always the better option in any situation? Discuss!
As I've said before, imo neither style is superior although I favor the traditional way in most situations.
And while you can perform perfectly fine even in the highest possible comp settings concentrating entirely on one style, this makes you easier to counter and you leave a huge potential untouched.

As for a change in the Spy meta, I think that many people regard the gun spy as superior now, although that doesn't hold true for everyone, obviously.
The additional weapon unlocks Valve gave us also have added more variety and imo it is key to make use of all of them (well, almost. Big Earner is still shit)
On pubs, it has always been about having fun and nothing changed there.
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Re: Spy Meta - Has it changed?

Post  Segno on Tue May 27, 2014 11:20 pm

In my opinion I really, really suggest stealthyness. TF2Gentleman has influenced me way more than you could imagine but it's not a bad thing. The way the spy was supposed to be played was stealthy, not being a retard Rambo with a small gun and a fake death.
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