Sorry for doublepost.
EemesWhat's important to remember is that there's nothing inherently good or bad about the 'stock' game. For instance, Valve set the max scattergun damage to 105 and the max rocket damage to 112. There's nothing inherently good or special about these values - there's no particular reason why the game would be significantly worse if rockets did only 111 damage at max, or scattergun did 106 (other than the effect of the tiny nerf/buff this would create). Just because this is the ‘stock’ level Valve set the game at, doesn’t mean it’s necessarily good or balanced.
I don't believe this is true. I imagine Valve picked most of those numbers with some very specific goals in mind, especially in relation to other values they had set already. So, sure, things like buffs doing a nice even 50% more health are probably arbitrary, but even so I think we can all agree the game would suffer if buffs only did 5%, or went up to 150%. There's clearly a balance to be had, which can be boiled down to "buffed players should be hard to kill solo, but easy to 2v1."
I'll try to come up with others.
"Light classes should always be vulnerable to getting double piped"
"Sniper dies at close range"
"Anything getting hit by 4 stickies at once dies"
"The rocket launcher needs to allow for soldier to deal damage and be mobile at the same time, without making him too hard to kill."
I mean. Especially on that last one, the rocket launcher is really a marvel of game design. Just enough rockets to allow you to do some crazy rocket jump and drop in out of nowhere to deal a single burst of damage, which if you don't aim perfectly, will at best damage some light classes (before you die), since hitting 1 direct and missing another won't kill anything. But if you DO aim it perfectly, you'll kill anything with less than 200 health (before you die). The damage numbers, and the interactions of damage between classes, are most likely intentional, and I would be surprised if there wasn't a long period of development where they were being changed multiple times daily.
I'm sure there are hundreds more, and I'm also sure there are tons of ingame contradictions to good design thanks to over 10 years of adding stuff. Sorta unrelated, but I think if we ever want to get serious about a promod, it's important to lay out a more concrete set of elements that we as a community find compelling.