Team Fortress 2‘s loooooooong-awaited alien-themed “Invasion” update is finally out, and players are digging it. Well, some of them are, anyway.
Invasion has been in the works for over a year, with Valve and members of the community (the latter being largely responsible for the update’s maps and cosmetic items) dropping hints like they had butter-slathered lobster claws for hands. In the end, the update has proven fun, if not particularly game-changing.
There are four community-made maps — 2Fort Invasion, Probed, Byre, and Watergate — high tech weapon skins like the Batsaber and the Shooting Star, an Invasion mission campaign, and of course SPACE HATS. Some people dig it, while others are peeved that there’s not more to the campaign (and the update overall) to justify the money they have to spend on a campaign pass and space cases.
If nothing else, though, preliminary scouting (and Heavy-ing and Pyro-ing and etc) reports have included some fun secrets, especially on the Watergate level. The map, as it turns out, was directly inspired by Bethesda’s Dishonored series, and it’s not shy with easter eggs.
First off, there’s the structure of the level itself. Get ready to do some parkour:
Players have also found whale bone charms and a mask similar to the one Corvo wears in Dishonored — both of which were promotional TF2 items a few years ago — hidden in the level’s more obscure corners. Cases in point:
Kind of a weird game to model a level after in the middle of a full-scale alien invasion, but there’s a UFO in the sky, so it still counts.
Meanwhile in the newly invaded 2Fort, one player noticed a poster with an embedded warning:
And for those interested, YouTuber Im Myler put together a video of all the new unusual item effects:
A fair portion of the discussion surrounding the update, however, has concerned what’s not in it. From jokes about laser frying pans to legitimate questions about why a large volume of community content (including long-awaited and thematically appropriate map Asteroid) didn’t make the cut, it feels like in-the-know TF2 fans understand what they could’ve had and can’t shake the feeling that this update could’ve been a bit more special.
Still, it’s a community update (rather than a primarily Valve-authored one), so it was never gonna be the biggest and best ever. Valve, meanwhile, is so hard at work on big new features (including competitive matchmaking, in all likelihood) that they canceled their in-game Halloween event this year, opting instead to turn it over to players. So something big is coming. And for now, something small is better than something that’s not anything at all. How’s the Invasion update treating you?