I don't disagree that the xbow's ability to build faster than medigun and the maximum healing rate should be nerfed, but people are making a way bigger deal about it than it actually is, and i genuinely feel like most of those people don't understand how team fights work. the ONLY thing that the xbox changes in the grand scheme of team fights is that it allows players to re-enter fights (mainly soldiers, because scouts can stay in fights with low hp, and demos are usually not the most forward player anyway), which is a good thing, because it allows for more continuous, thus interesting team fights. i strongly believe the majority of the problems in this game stem from the idea of not being able to have a team fight based on a map's design, a weapon's ability, etc.
botmode's post from an earlier thread also explains why the xbow isn't as bad as it seems.
MarxistwheeI've been around for awhile, I'm familiar with the mechanics of the game with/without the xbow. (I started out playing roamer when shotgun was still a thing)
I'm not particularly advocating for or against the crossbow, I think the game is fantastic both with and without it but I do think a lot of the arguments being made on both are quite shortsighted.
To start, obviously crit heals are one of the best mechanics in the game, for obvious reasons and there should almost definitely be some sort of mechanic to make crossbows affected by crit heals. In the current state however, crit heals still play a huge in buffs, and I think some people are gonna argue that because you can get arrowed, you don't need to get buffed but that's distinctly false. For instance, on scout, although a quick love tap when you have crit heals gets you to 185, I think any scout main could attest to how powerful a 185 health scout is compared to a 125 health one. On roamer, 300 hp at the beginning of a fight can help you push spam or win a 1v1.
The amount of healing that crossbow puts out is actually absurd for the most part. You can fully heal a team at close range significantly faster and obviously arrow building adds a layer of unpredictability to the game that just shouldn't exist (often times the only way to know if a team has been arrow building is them to counterpop an uber on you). Despite all this, in most of the "important" situations to hit an arrow, it's actually pretty damn hard, obviously takes quite a bit of skill and oftentimes involves making a decision on whether to give out guaranteed heals to a target that may actually need it, or to take the risk to shoot the arrow, which is something that people seem to be ignoring. Obviously there are arrows that are just free that can save a player/team with bad coordination and decision making but, in general, that's what good aim in tf2 does. Arrows actually give medic a much greater ability to carry based on their mechanics just like any other class can.
I hope everyone knows that the crossbow is pretty damn complicated and I don't feel like I can really give a coherent argument one way or another in a forum post but I really hope people don't just attribute something to being dumb because it's mechanically based or rewarding coordination.
When it comes to soldier, I think it's pretty much inarguable that they're the class that receives the most arrows by a large margin. In combination with gunboats they can actually reenter a fight, obviously without a buff, which is something that only scout could really do at all before the crossbow. I see a couple of people arguing that damage you do has less meaning because of arrows and I really disagree with that, I just think that it means you need to be more on your toes as a team if you want to full commit in one moment, or play fights in a way that you, as one player, can follow up rather than initiate (which is something a lot of roamers have done regardless of xbow -> ma3la, purpleshirt, seagull, drack). Basically what I'm saying if you think that crossbow makes your damage more meaningless, and I know people might present some salt to this, but maybe, just play better? I know I'm not everyone but as every class in the game I've never personally felt like I was being ineffective and completely powerless as a player simply because the unlock made my damage worse. I've always felt like I could play in a way that circumvents the xbow, just as you can play in a way that exploits the medigun in the way you listed.
Like I said, I don't think I'm doing this argument justice. I guess to some up my overall opinion though, the crossbow in its current form is quite powerful and needs some adjustment but I don't know if it's so powerful that it breaks the game like some people think it does because it definitely adds quite a bit to the game and it's by no means a skill-less, brainless weapon like some people think it is. If anyone has any questions or like counterarguments to anything I've said, I'll try to address them because I want people to understand the game well enough to make accurate opinions about the crossbow.