Reader Review: 119 Team Fortress 2 Updates

Reader Review: 119 Team Fortress 2 Updates

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This review was submitted by Steven Bogos. If you’ve played Team Fortress 2, or just want to ask Steven more about it, leave your thoughts in the comments below.

119 Team Fortress 2 Updates (PC)

Recently Valve celebrated the release of their 119th free update to Team Fortress 2, the popular cartoon shooter released all the way back in October 2007. This is a huge number of tweaks and additions that have turned TF2 into an almost completely different game from when it launched. With the final of the class updates, the Engineer, looming on the horizon, many are predicting it will be the last major update of the game. It’s a good time to take stock on what has changed in TF2, what has worked and what hasn’t


Upgradin’ Mah Dispenser: Valve has shown us that the way to keep a game’s community alive as well as maintain sales of an old game is through continued content updates. Rather than nickel-and-diming us to death with minor DLC packs, Valve’s updates are meaty and free, with every major update pushing TF2’s sales through the roof.

Did I Mention It Was Free?: Since launch, TF2 has received:
* Four new game modes (Arena, King of the Hill, Tournament and Payload Race)
* 29 new maps (including nine community maps)
* 30 new weapons (including four community weapons)
* 49 cosmetic hats and misc items (including nine community hats)
* Dozens of balance updates and new functionality added to old content (such as the airblast being added to the vanilla flamethrower)
To put that into perspective, the new Modern Warfare 2 map pack costs $15 (only $5 less than the total cost of TF2) and contains a measly five maps. When you consider one of the only flaws reviewers gave TF2 at launch was that it had ‘only six maps,’ it makes you wonder what kind of rating they would give it today.


Drop The Drops! The first couple of TF2 class updates had their respective classes new weapons tied to achievements. It wasn’t a perfect system as people could farm on achievement servers, but it worked. With the Sniper vs. Spy update, Valve tried something different. They added the random drop system. The gist of it being that for every X amount of hours you play, you have an X chance of finding an item. The key flaw being AN item, meaning ANY item, including one you may already have. They’ve improved it over time, adding things like the crafting system and the recent redesign of how drop rates are calculated, but it’s still broken and unnecessary.

Fire Your Play Testers: With every major update, something is released that is obviously overpowered. For example, the Pyro update added a weapon called the backburner. As well as giving 100% crits when attacking from behind, it also gave the Pyro +50 HP. Pyro’s had more HP than Soldiers, and could charge level 3 sentries, as well as survive a fully charged sniper body shot. The +50 HP buff was removed within a couple of days, yet a similar situation has occurred with every successive update.

Whether the delicious free update stream stops with the Engineer or whether it continues doesn’t matter. TF2 has received enough free content to put even the biggest name developers to shame, and is a shining example of how a PC game should be supported. If you are still one of the few to have not bought TF2, it’s not too late to buy the best value game that has ever been.

Reviewed by: Steven Bogos

You can have your Reader Review published on Kotaku. Send your review to us at the usual address. Make sure it’s written in the same format as above and in under 500 words – yes, we’ve upped the word limit. We’ll publish the best ones we get and the best of the month will win a Madman DVD prize pack.


  • You forgot to mention the movies.

    Often in line with updates, the team fortress 2 team has continued to update the stable of “Meet the Team” videos, reaching new peaks of epic and entertainment with the latest “Meet the Spy” video, in particular the unforgettable line “No, that would be your mother.”

    The movies are dvd quality and highly entertaining tidbits that give a little more insight into the character of the TF2 classes.

    With only two of the nine team members left to star and only one last class update on the starting line, I for one am enthusiastic about their (hopefully) upcoming release.

    • Good point, i LOVED meet the spy, and i can’t wait for the last two.

      Apparently the voice actor who does the medic left valve, so we may not see a meet the medic 🙁

      • Someone on the Valve forums email that guy who played Medic (he’s the guy who plays Travis in No More Heros) and he said it would jump at the chance to do more Medic stuff, all Valve needs to do is ask.

        Also, I agree with this review, I can’t think of any other game that’s had the long period of evolution and extreme tweaking that TF2 has had.

  • You know what I love?
    The community.
    I’m not a big fan of competitive FPSes mostly because of the raging, but I can hop on an Aussie server and it’ll just be fun. Sure, it’s a game that can be played competitively, but it’s also a game that allows for a bit of retarded fun if everyone participates.

  • The best thing about this game is you can spend two hours totally immersed pewpewing everything in sight as a heavy and then if you are bored, just swap to another class!

    There are 9 different classes that make the game feel so fun once again if you get sick of the other characters.

  • “turned TF2 into an almost completely different game from when it launched. ”

    That’s why I stopped playing, I mean seriously, crafting system, I know I’m in the minority when I say that its the stupidest idea ever.

  • I only purchased the game about 2 weeks ago and I’ve had such a blast playing it. It’s always got players playing, and each class is like playing a completely different game. The maps are very easy to learn, yet are still largely balanced and great fun. Also to me it seems most classes are very balanced.

  • One thing overlooked is just how intricately balanced the game is. You really do have to play as a team. This ain’t MW2. No rambos allowed.

  • I hate these updates, part of the reason I bought a 360. It’s a shame they ruined that too with the class patch.

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