TF2’s Hats And Stats Update Makes Me Sad

By Craig Pearson on March 30th, 2012 at 2:00 pm.

They are rather spiffing.
It doesn’t take a lot for me to get obsessed. I’d managed to pull away from Team Fortress 2, but then Valve introduced the Strange category of weapons, stat-tracking guns and melee weapons that report how many kills each has, and I got into it all over again. I’m almost embarrassed by how easy it was to hook me back into the mainframe. Worryingly Valve have just added a new category of unlocks to augment the Strange weapons counting abilities: Strange Parts.

Only found in crates, Strange Parts will help you study specific aspects of your performance in battle by letting you customize your favorite Strange weapon. Now you’re free to track the number of enemies you gib, projectiles you reflect, heads you’ve shot, and more.

They’ve also dropped three new hats into the game, and that number is a more descriptive than you realise: there are only three in the entire game, and to get one you’ll most likely need to spend a significant amount of money.

Each hat has a significant stat attached, and each day one will be presented to the previous day’s winner of the most duels, buyer of the most map stamps, or giver of the most gifts. All of these have an element of shopping attached to them: duels, map stamps and gift-wrap are all purchased in the TF2 store (although I’ve had a server drop duals into my backpack). You get the hat for a day before it switches to the next winner.

All yours: You just need to spin around and throw your money in the air

So, in a game where there’s masses of competitive elements based on player skill, Valve instead reward people spending the most money. You’ll need to win the duels, obviously, but bulk purchasing map stamps to get a unique hat for a day rewards those with a willingness to spend more money. It makes spending a competitive act. In addition Strange Parts will only be found in crates. So I have to pay to see the stats I’m generating. Actually with the dice-roll, I have to pay to generate the opportunity to possibly get one. While it was already the case with the Strange weapons, I’d hoped it was just something they explored. It looks like it’s here to stay.

In both cases you’re only ever paying for the opportunity. I’d have less problem if the rewards were tangible, and clearly stated, but the trend for asking for money from the users without any guarantee of getting what you hope for in return seems to be taking hold in Badwater. The hats and the hat nots. I know it’s free to play, and I know there’s a business at the heart of all this, but there’s an innate greed at the centre of this update that seems unlike Valve. There are plenty of things they could track and reward: the most kills, furthest demo jump, the most kill screens taken of someone. None would cost the players a penny, and they’d be rewarding what the game is about. Now I’m not so sure what’s most important to them.

, , .

160 Comments »

Sponsored links by Taboola
  1. Zern says:

    That’s it, I quit, yet again. Maybe this time I’ll stick to it. Probably not ;-).
    EDIT: Should have added an emoticon to take off the edge. Fixed.

  2. Roshin says:

    It’s a hat. For a day. Even if I try really hard, I can’t call it a reward.

    • Dances to Podcasts says:

      Hat for a day, foold for a lifetime.

    • Baines says:

      Anyone willing to dump money into a game just to get a hat for a single day deserves what they get. I’m sure people will do it, but if those people really want to burn money, you might as well let them.

      Honestly, I find the three unique hats less annoying than the F2P gimmick of chests/crates/whatever that you have to pay real money to unlock.

    • Kdansky says:

      All games should have the option to let stupid people spend more money on nothing. That way, the game can be sold at lower price or produced at higher price, without impacting sale price (which is what I will pay). Everybody wins!

      Except the stupid people who buy hats for 20$. But I don’t pity them.

  3. bit_crusherrr says:

    I really hate crates in TF2. They wouldn’t be so bad if you got 1 or 2 keys a week as a drop, but forcing you to pay for a key to unlock a box that might be a load of shite just doesn’t seem worth it. I really wish that people who originally purchased TF2 could either opt out of crates dropping or even better got 1 key a week for free.

    • Terragot says:

      THIS. I pay’d full price for TF2 when it came out, my brother got it free on his mac. Guess who has more hats, weapons and unique strange stuff and money left over to go down the boozer on a friday, and guess who has a single hat (proof of purchase that cannot be traded) and 20 odd crates.

      I bum valve, don’t get me wrong. I remember some of the great events like soldier vs demoman, class updates ect. I just wish I was a money beard.

      • bit_crusherrr says:

        I don’t even have any hats. Well I do have a few but that’s just from buying Magicka, Red Orchestra 2 and other games. I’ve never had one drop. It annoys me that I’m annoyed I don’t have any hats. You can’t even see them.

        • Kollega says:

          I have one hat that’s been dropped to me. I’ve been playing since the summer of 2008 and untill winter 2010. Say what you want, but i don’t think that’s fair.

          • Premium User Badge

            wyrmsine says:

            This. Playing since 2007, and I’ve crafted one hat (the Trophy Belt, of all things), and had exactly one hat drop in regular play, which came in a crate. Bit disappointing, that.

          • Bungle says:

            You get enough items from a month of playing to craft your own hat. Get over it.

          • Sharklord15 says:

            For all of you complaining about your lack of hats – I didn’t get one until 900 hours. But I had an unusual by that time. I hadn’t bought anything. And my drop rate was quite low. I had to TRADE for my hats, actually do something. It doesn’t matter about your drop count, you can always TRADE. This is what I did: Find one or more weapon(s). Go to a noob server. Trade req. random people. Put the gun in, and say “Any 2 random weapons.” At least 75% of the time for me, they put in two random weapons. I now have two weapons, of course. Now I repeat this, again and again and again, etc. Eventually, when you have around 18 weapons, scrap them – use a scrap banker. Smelt to a refined. Ask around for a cruddy hat whilst still doing the first technique. If you don’t get it by 1.66 refined, start asking for slightly more expensive hats, etc. It will eventually work for all people. And anyone who calls me sad is just a dick.

        • Godwhacker says:

          Well, you can always craft them…

      • Premium User Badge

        Smashbox says:

        On the other hand, without evolving their business model, development would have stopped a long time ago.

        I for one am thankful that their monetization has not resulted in a pay-to-win system.

        • Hypernetic says:

          Considering most hats are traded for around 1 refined metal… you could have a lot of hats if you really wanted them.

          • TechnicalBen says:

            What? Oh, refined. Like the ones you need lots of drops to get. :/

          • Premium User Badge

            frymaster says:

            27 drops. A hat costs 3 refined to craft, though, and then it’s pot luck

          • MikoSquiz says:

            Currently two weapons make a scrap, not three any more. Three scraps make a reclaimed, three reclaimed make a refined, a refined can be traded for a hat. That’s 18 drops, by my math. And the cap (which is pretty easy to hit with non-obsessive playing) is 8 drops a week. Play a reasonable amount for 3-4 weeks and you’ll have enough stuff to trade for a hat.

            The Ghastly Gibus is the best hat anyway, and all you have to do for one is dominate anyone who’s got one around Halloween time. And pretty much everyone has one.

        • bit_crusherrr says:

          It’s not the free to play crap that annoys me it’s that as someone who originally paid for the game I have to put up with the dumb forced money making shite like crates. You can’t even turn them into scrap.

          • LionsPhil says:

            I really, really wish you could turn crates into scrap, even if the rate was appalling. I don’t want to just bin a resource I can’t regain trivially, but they sure do generate pages and pages of inventory clutter.

            (The punchline will be once you run out of space and decide to delete them all, the next update Valve will let you craft a Hat Made Of Crates [recipe: fifty crates].)

          • Interrobangin says:

            You can turn crates into scrap by trading. It might seem like something that takes a lot of effort, but if you sell them in bulk, it would actually take less input than crafting or deleting them would.

      • Maldomel says:

        And all that for cosmetic items.

        • RegisteredUser says:

          There are actually a LOT of guns and items that have some severe modifiers on them. I don’t know why this isn’t discussed more, rather than the actually only cosmetic stuff I could not care less about.

          • DBG says:

            because it’s actually trivial to get all the “game relevant” stuff and the “people’s money/desires/goals” is in the cosmetics.

    • Ninja Foodstuff says:

      It’s because it panders to the same risk / reward mechanisms that make gambling so addictive. In general it disgusts me just how many addictive gambling mechanisms are finding their way into mainstream gaming now.

      • FunkyBadger3 says:

        All gaming is balancing risk/reward though, isn’t it? So it would make perfect sense for there to be more of it…

    • The Godzilla Hunter says:

      But the thing is that you reeeally don’t need to open crates. Crate drops even run on a separate drop timer (getting a crate =/= not getting a weapon).

    • DBG says:

      Um, actually you get random drops for free each week. You smelt them into metal and then trade metal for keys. So, in other words, you get keys for free.

      You get 9 items per week on average, so that’s 1 refined metal in 2 weeks or 1 key in 5 weeks.

      • Brise Bonbons says:

        That’s all well and good, but many of us still want to craft a significant number of the new weapons which haven’t dropped for us yet. And given how valve has made recent crafting recipes so damn resource intensive (while at the same time often requiring one or more valuable weapons to be sacrificed), we need large amounts of raw metal and non-smelted items to get our crafting done. That’s not even considering that we might want to save metal towards crafting a hat…

        In this system, if you don’t want to buy weapons directly (which is neither something I want to support nor especially fun), you’re often stuck making lose-lose choices about what you want to unlock: “Do I want to use my only X to craft a Y?” “I need the X to craft both the Y and the Z, but I only have one – which do I want more?”

        Now, I’m all for some hard choices in say, an RPG, or maybe during the strategic stage of a TF2 game. But I don’t think unlocking items in a progression system is really the proper place for such choices. Nor do I feel you should have to give up options you’ve already unlocked in order to get new ones.

        Also, doesn’t it seem a bit ludicrous that you could get one key in several weeks, during which you might get half a dozen boxes?

        • DBG says:

          Duplicates of weapons do drop. If you’re nervous to craft away an item X to get item Y then it’s just because you want Y right now. Because otherwise you just wait a bit and get both another drop of X OR another drop of Y OR you get a drop of Z, which you trade for Y. Or you don’t even do either of those because to satisfy your desire of Y you can take Y for a “test run” out of store.

          In most cases crafting weapons is stupid. You are more effective just trading them. Saving metal to craft hats is even more useless/stupid – just decide what hat you like and you’ll be able to trade it for 1.66-2,66 ref instead of trying a random craft for 3 ref or 4ref+token.

          The point of the post i replied was “i want to get keys for free by just playing” and my point is “you pretty much get it for free already by just playing”. If you say that you want to get them more often and faster, then my reply is “you are greedy”.

      • MisteroMikey says:

        Not to be critical, but drops occur for a 10 hour period reseting everyweek, and you get the chance to recieve more items, or more valuable items if your premium. If you aren’t premium, go buy 2 keys (5 dollars) and get yourself a hat or two and better yourself off.

        Just sayin.

    • YellowPikachu says:

      You can always delete crates, or give them away. Besides, if you reward player who “bought” the game youll have to make distinctions between those who payed full price or got it in a sale. Also not, that many players who started F2P have payed many, many times the full price of the game….

      • cakebring3r says:

        no. no you dont. my friend was ftp and he found 2 taunts and a hat in the first 10 hours of playing naturally i too advantage of this and bought him the game by buying to keys with the promise that i wanted my money back next time i saw him and his 2 taunts and hat, he then thought that he owed me more because i got him a game that he was otherwise addicted to so he gave me what he unboxed with the keys, the point of this story is that i’m a jerk… hang on that’s not it… valve turned me into a hat craving psychopath (edit: may be confusing, i clicked reply to the wrong person, my bad, but the point still holds.)

  4. trooperdx3117 says:

    This was the exact reason i bounced off team fortress 2 when they started bringing the whole mann-conomy update. Sure you could unlock the new weapons through hours and hours of play but all unlocks and drops were random which meant you never knew what you were getting. Say what you want about the unlocks in battlefield and Call of duty but at least if you set your sights on an unlock theres a clear way of unlocking it!

    • Premium User Badge

      Malibu Stacey says:

      Yeah grinding experience to be able to compete equally with everyone else is a much better system than having defaults which are, in general, superior to any of the unlocks.

      • Vorphalack says:

        Defaults superior to any of the unlocks? I smell an industry appologist, becasue in most cases that is a blatant lie.

        • Premium User Badge

          Malibu Stacey says:

          Perhaps try playing the game at a reasonable level & you’ll understand instead of throwing baseless accusations around like custard pies?

          • Premium User Badge

            Vandelay says:

            How does TF2 not have a custard pie launcher?!

          • LionsPhil says:

            Soldier: Equalizer is a straight upgrade over the Shovel. I’ve seen a lot of preference for the Liberty Launcher too, but it has disadvantages and might just be having a burst of popularity for being newer.
            Medic: Amputator over Bonesaw: even without the crossbow you gain an area-effect heal taunt.
            Heavy: Brass Beast is not a straight upgrade, but seems strongly preferred over the default minigun since the movement penalties are things good Heavy players are used to mitigating.
            There are a lot of degreaser+axtinguisher pyros out there too, but it’s again not a strict upgrade.

            There are naff weapons and plain different ones that do work as sidegrades (Your Eternal Reward and the Dead Ringer being good examples, since the latter brings back feign-death gameplay from TFC), and they’re the majority, but TF2 certainly does have some dominant non-defaults.

          • nightdart says:

            ye guy who said defaults are mostly better hes right and Wrong its really preference over anything like i use the machina but i know the normal rifle is sometimes better.
            but some defaults are just clearly better and really other than some extreme cases you shouldn’t really change it Demoman pipebomb and stickybomb shouldnt really be changed because the others are generally terrible and its never good to play as heavy with medic healing then run in when they have uber to realise they have kritzkrieg on it does say but when playing games i Cba reading. also things like The Backburner should just be taken out of the game it encourages bad play because the cost to put out fires on people is so expensive and it makes WM1 better.
            Really what im saying here is Defaults are Defaults and pretty much middle ground Good at most things type of deal there is no downfall to them there just isnt any fancy stuff.

            Should really give reference to the very fist post on this spin off thingy so yea the battlefield 3 way of doing things is straight terrible until you realise that play with a certain gun and stick with that gun and its no different to any other all guns are pretty much on the same level of power no 1 gun is superior to the next, the guns dont get better the more you play the better you get it seems like the guns are better but they really arent i went back to default gun on BF3 and i got 25 kills for 2 deaths which is usually around what i get with any other gun again Preference.

          • Strange_guy says:

            Brass beast an upgrade? It’s a terrible minigun, the tomislav is the arguably upgrade heavy primary. Still your point is accurate, as well as the ones you mentioned the GRU, atomiser, bushwacka, the Dr. Enforcical loadout (like the liberty launcher it isn’t always the best for good players, but for poor players it makes them too effective) are all weapons that lacking will leave you less effective.

          • MikoSquiz says:

            The Equalizer is a straight upgrade, yeah. Also the Pyro’s Axtinguisher is pretty essential. Both are achievement unlocks, though.

            I’ve never seen a player who knew his arse from his elbow using a Brass Beast. The mobility hit is just too harsh, a Sunday-player scout can flatten you with ease if you’re wielding that thing without a backup shotgun. The Tomislav is arguably superior, but the operative word is arguably – it’s a playstyle choice, and most players plump for the stock minigun. The Dead Ringer’s probably the closest thing to a straight upgrade that isn’t a melee weapon.. and it’s also an unlock

            The amputator’s heal taunt is a straight upgrade of sorts, but it doesn’t really have any practical use. It just gets you killed. :)

            In short, all the good stuff is achievement-unlockable, and all the highly situational or useless stuff that isn’t can be traded for cheaply. The exception is set hats, which do cost four refined metal and a specific weapon; none of the sets are very good except for the Spy’s, which is absolutely murderous in the right hands (if almost useless when there’s a sentry around). Getting repeatedly splatted by a fez-wearing spy out of nowhere can feel more than a little cheap. I bought that fez, of course. Mea culpa.

          • LionsPhil says:

            Sets are a bit annoying since they tie the dress-up into the gameplay. What if you wanted to be a murderous YER spy not wearing a Fez?

            The real reason to take the Amputator is if you have the crossbow too, since you get a lifesaving increase in self-heal, natch.

            Beast heavies regularly outgun others IME, and a Heavy with one getting crits (or kritz) is horrendously powerful. It plays to Heavy’s strengths, rather than compensating for weaknesses like the Tomislav.

      • Brise Bonbons says:

        It’s true that the standard options are often more versatile, and thus safer choices overall. But they are by no means better across the board. And many alternate weapons are clearly superior – in addition to the fact that most basic melee weapons are garbage compared to the unlocks.

        TF2 is designed well enough that the “ideal” weapon choice usually depends on how you play. But for many play styles, alternate primary and secondary weapons are clearly superior. The Liberty Launcher is frequently just better than the stock launcher, unless you’re in comp play where you always want the Original. The Machina is usually more effective than the stock sniper, since no-scoping is so situational. Pretty much all of the pyro primaries offer some advantage you want over the stock flame thrower. Similarly, an engineer is doing so little straight-up combat that I have trouble imagining why they wouldn’t want the utility offered by their alternate items. Spies almost always run alternate items, as do medics (certainly for me and anyone else who can hit with needles, the blutsauger is a straight upgrade over the stock needle gun).

        In short, if you go observe a public TF2 game, I will happily bet you internet moneys that most of the players will be using alternate weapons because they offer a clear advantage for their play style or that situation.

        Now, some classes (like demo) have very niche primary unlocks which don’t see much use. But at this stage in TF2’s development, I think it’s a little odd to continue arguing the stock weapons are “usually the best choice”.

        • YellowPikachu says:

          The only classes that need unlocks to thrive are Pyro (degreaser, axetinguisher). Some classes are upgraded with unlock (SOlider/Equalizer, Medic/Ubersaw, Heavy/Sanvich, etc) but they are still playable without them.

          That being said, you can get EVERY weapon in the game for 1 scrap ($0.05) if you go into almost any trade server. Heck, aside form some stranges (stocks, the ones from crate 30 and 40), stranges are usually 1 rec-1ref. Stock tend to be the most expensive stranges, mainly because its well known by the competitive and overall community that they are more consistent and sometimes downright superior (Rocket Launcher, Sticky Launcher, Grenade Launcher, Scattergun, etc).

          • nightdart says:

            until the most recent patch there was no difference between the usage of the foods for heavy as you could drop them all and get an instant 150 HP which is why i went with buffalo looks more manly but that got fixed no more instant 150 HP for me.
            and as long as u learn how to play with a certain gun learn its pitfalls and advantages there is really no difference you’ll find the best people tend not to stick with 1 gun they change for the other teams setup the map and on attack or on defence etc.

            also added little thing trade market is brilliant use it u find that most weps go for cheap you can get fast metal and its a great way to get hats.
            currently on 6 unusuals because of the buds that i got off various people (8 buds to work with = lots of choice of hats)

  5. Bhazor says:

    “So, in a game where there’s masses of competitive elements based on player skill, Valve instead reward people spending the most money. ”

    You only just noticed?

  6. 2late2die says:

    It’s sad to see what TF2 has become. I mean yeah, it’s possible to kinda just ignore all those hats and goofy weapons and really the entire market, but all this stuff takes man hours from developers that could be working on more worthwhile stuff, like, oh I don’t know, Half-Life 3 or something.

    It’s like TF2 slowly becoming less of a multiplayer shooter game, and more of a market place for silly 3D models – it’s like those poser or 3d studio max or maya sites that have repositories of premium 3d models you can purchase, only here you’re limited to doing just one thing with them.

    • Barlk says:

      “It’s sad to see what TF2 has become.”

      Yeah. For me, it was the advent of what I believe to be pay-2-win, a sad story that all began with the Mannconomy update and ultimately resulted in (imo) the destruction of the finest multiplayer game ever made (or at least that I’ve ever played). It all boils down to two key design principles Valve have held steadfast to:

      -the consistent delay of crafting recipes after the release of weapons into the game. It began with something like a months delay of the recipes for the two Rift pre-order weapons and seen again most notably with a months delay of the recipes for a vast array of weapons (the Spycicle update iirc). The only way to obtain these realistically prior to the release of their recipes was via crate keys and the Mann-co store (or in the case of the Rift weapons, pre-purchasing a €50 game), both routes of which cost money.
      -the continued presence of five stat-changing (three of which are stat-boosting) hats, all of which have stupidly high crafting requirements rendering them unobtainable to all but the most dedicated and rich players.

      To clarify: I consider pay-2-win as being to allow paying players to obtain gameplay-affecting statistical changes (ie. weapons) before it is realistically possible for other, non-paying players to do so. Trading, for the most part, serves only as a shortcut in such situations, and for only a few players: if every TF2 player wanted access to every possible loadout so as to maximise their ability to respond to any given situation, there is simply no way in which they would be measurably able to (gradually or otherwise) progress towards possession of every stat-changer in the game.

      So while, at a stretch, the multitude of poor design choices – the huge number of unbalanced weapons, the loss of TF2’s stylistic integrity, the objective loss of performance caused by the poor optimisation of a hundred different hats – can be excused as evidence of Valve’s continued enthusiasm and determination to provide ‘value’ to the community free of charge, it is the above elements that really kills any respect I had for TF2 and its development team.

      It was once a slick, well-defined and almost perfectly balanced multiplayer shooter. Now? LOLHATZ.

      • Brise Bonbons says:

        Well said. Personally though, I think the worst move has been the ever-growing price of crafting weapons. We went from “combine a couple things” early on to frequently seeing “lose two to nine weapons and probably a good quarter of a hat’s worth of metal”. This is exacerbated by the skyrocketing number of weapons in-game (and thus the diminishing chance of randomly dropping that one weapon you need, either to use or to craft something else with).

        The real joke is that community map makers have always done the lion’s share of work to keep TF2 fresh. As far as I’m concerned, Valve could have stopped supporting the game actively after the last big class update and let the community keep making maps, and it would be in better shape than it is now.

        There are so many weapons these days, I don’t even feel like the addition of new ones does anything to keep the game fresh. But that probably puts me in a small minority, so…

        P.s. For the record, I don’t think TF2 is currently Pay 2 Win in any real way. I just think it’s losing its elegant clarity and purpose of design under the heap of money-grubbing junk they’ve piled on top.

    • Wowza says:

      Except that the majority of hats come from community members, and there’s a large number of people working on the game who are not 3D modelers.

  7. Drinking with Skeletons says:

    Valve’s behavior has become more-and-more money-focused. From their relentlessly focus-group-tested games to the disturbing evolution of TF2 to their “me-too” attitude with DotA2, they just seem to have become…kind of worrying.

    What’s really scary is that they don’t answer to shareholders; there’s no pressure to make any more money than what is needed to pay salaries and save up for emergencies, no short-sighted emphasis on growth, nothing, yet we keep seeing more and more mercenary titles and updates.

    • Terragot says:

      I guess it’s to be expected, Gaben is a Harvard graduate and a Microsoft ‘lottery winner’ I’m sure his lifestyle is extremely profit driven, in that his peers are all about recording highscore in life with american dollars earned.

    • Kollega says:

      This. This, dammit. I second this comment, oh so very much, because it is the truth and this situation does worry me.

    • nil says:

      Earth to Gabe: ZT Online was a warning, not a suggestion.

      • Premium User Badge

        Devenger says:

        What an interesting article. Thanks for the link – I’m surprised I’ve never been linked to there once in the 4 years since its publication… it echoes a lot of my thoughts on what F2P gaming can become.

  8. Xocrates says:

    Part of me is annoyed at Valve for such obvious money grabbing scheme, yet the other part of me can’t stop thinking that anyone silly enough to spend a crapload of money just for the chance of getting a new temporary hat obviously deserves to lose that money.

    • Ninja Foodstuff says:

      Is someone with gambling addiction considered “silly”?

      • Xocrates says:

        If you’re gambling for a temporary virtual hat, yes.

        I know gambling addiction can be a problem, but you’re usually gambling for real earnings, not bragging rights.

        That said, this is more of an auction than an actual gamble.

        • Premium User Badge

          Hidden_7 says:

          Gambling addiction isn’t really about what you could be getting. If you cared about that in any meaningful way then you would go about things in a different way since gambling is an inefficient, unreliable way to get the spoils of gambling.

          Gambling addiction is about the act of the gambling. What you could be winning is actually pretty irrelevant, so gambling for silly virtual hats versus money doesn’t seem any less ‘real’ an addiction, since the addiction is to gambling, not what you could be getting out of it.

  9. Kollega says:

    “I know it’s free to play, and I know there’s a business at the heart of all this, but there’s an innate greed at the centre of this update that seems unlike Valve. […] Now I’m not so sure what’s most important to them.”

    Finally, the voice of reason has spoken. That’s exactly why i said “fuck this” around the Mann-conomy update, and “sad” is exactly what the hat-ification of TF2 has made me. Such a beautiful game, ruined irrevocably in the name of profit. Congratulations on finally seeing this.

    The comment up above me, by Drinking With Skeletons, makes an even better point that i have to second. What was done to TF2 is obviously intended to bring in as much money as it’s possible, damn the stylistic integrity of the game, the good press, and all other things Valve used to pride themselves on. And what makes it disturbing is that Valve don’t have to answer to shareholders… yet they make such mercenary moves that obviously have money and only money as their interest.

    And the worst part is that we can’t do jack shit about it all.

  10. OpT1mUs says:

    TF2 jumped the shark long, long, long time ago.

    • TechnicalBen says:

      Don’t give them ideas, else they will nuke the fridge and release a shark jumping loadout!

  11. MrYo says:

    That’s what everyone does nowadays. Try to get as much money out of each customer and see how dumb we are. It’s a shame that most people don’t care about this and still buy such crappy products from those greedy companies.

  12. kwyjibo says:

    Encouraging spending on gifts and maps should benefit the community.

  13. Premium User Badge

    jezcentral says:

    “I know it’s free to play, and I know there’s a business at the heart of all this, but…” anything after this was always going to be slightly naive, no?

    Also, I know I might well be reading it wrong, but where is the Pay2Win here? Isn’t the only actual benefit got from wearing a hat, and you get that hat by duelling? (Not trolling, genuinely asking).

    • Maktaka says:

      It’s Free to Play. Even though the claim is often made that F2P is fine as long as money is only required for cosmetic items, and even though this entire update is about players spending money ONLY on cosmetic items, “true gamers” still hate on it….because.

  14. Oof says:

    “catagory” = “category”

  15. Eukatheude says:

    It’s stupid but whatever, won’t affect a lot of people and it’s an easy moneymaker. Plus, stamps money goes to map makers.

  16. Groove says:

    This is the problem with free to play games. TF2 is a beautiful, complete game. You need never spent a single penny on it to enjoy one of the greatest shooters ever. Except:

    1) For the developer to make money they must make you focus on the paid aspects of the game. You can happily ignore them, but you’ll feel like you’re missing out. Like I said, even if you ignore them, the dev will keep thrusting them in front of you again and again.

    2) Similar but crucially different, completionists are in hell. If you want to 100% the game then you’ll need to spent loads of money, then keep spending loads of money. Forever if you want to have every shiny trinket and consider the game complete.

    3) It murders games as art. TF2, as I said was/is beautiful. The vanilla game was so carefully balanced and setup, so much time was spent making every class immeadiately identifiable from the slightest glance. You looked once and you knew what people could do. Now it’s a mess of different unlocks and abilties. It’s still a great game, but I’d be hard pushed to call it art any more.

    3a) Design as art. If you’re removing features from the game and letting people pay for them, your game isn’t the best game it could be. Removing minor things may not be that big a deal and it might be a good buisness, but if you’re trying to make the best game possible then either the feature adds to the game and should be included, or it doesn’t add to the game and it should be removed.

    • cliffski says:

      absolutely, well said that man.

    • Brise Bonbons says:

      Really well put Groove! I agree especially with the emphasis on elegant game design as art itself.

      I’ve been thinking about games in this way a lot recently. I think good game design can stand easily next to other forms of artful design such as architecture, industrial design, or furniture and decor design, rather than only being compared to the other branches of creativity such as books, movies, etc.

      Doing that, what do we see with TF2? A beautiful public building, immaculately designed… And then covered in “if you want to step up to the next price point” kitsch additions. It’s the pristine aesthetics and functionality of a well design piece of consumer electronics… But with a bunch of blank plastic inserts where optional features could go if you bought the “premium” model.

    • Premium User Badge

      jezcentral says:

      @Groove

      1) A downside for all F2P games, I agree, but someone has to pay for the game. F2P is not free. Somewhere along the line, someone (the customer base) has to commit money, and enough of it to keep the company involved going. (I’m separating Valve the publisher and Valve the developer).

      2) I’m tempted to ask, “So what?” I don’t mean it horribly, but no-one else is making them pay, just their own personal neuroses.

      3) I disagree that complexity prevents a game from being art. (Although I’m not sure that is what you mean).

      3a) Suitably for a paragraph about Art, I find this entirely subjective! :) It may be your opinion, but it’s not mine.

      • MattM says:

        Lots of players are interested in getting 100% in games. Seeing and do it all can be a lot of fun. In some games developers take advantage of that desire to sell lots of over priced junk. It might not be evil (depending on your point of view), but it is fair to criticize that part of the game just as you might criticize the controls or the story.

  17. Zern says:

    Does anyone want to discuss what their “ideal version” of TF2 would look like? For me it would have to be completely without hats, and only include a select few non-stock items. Mostly the stuff that can be unlocked via achievements. Balance fixes like the ability to carry buildings make sense, too. The rest I could do without. I know I’ll never see such a thing, but it’s nice to think about.

    • Premium User Badge

      Malibu Stacey says:

      All perfectly achievable using the item_whitelist.txt on your own server but why bother looking up things when procrastination is so much easier?

      • Zern says:

        I know that option exists. A favorite server of mine tried this a few years back. I don’t think it would gather any players. Most people who still play TF2 are probably fine with the current state. It is not bothering me enough to justify setting up my own server. Just enough to make me consider devoting my time elsewhere. Note that I am not suggesting anyone else to do the same.

      • Brise Bonbons says:

        It’s hard enough to find a server with a good community, that plays the maps you like, ideally (for me) with nocrits and only 24 players… Unfortunately such specific server setups do seem to have trouble staying active.

        As for me, I don’t actually care about hats. Make as many as you like, as long as they don’t have stats. My problem is the constant flood of new weapons. Now, that said, I think the hats and costumes would be much better if they stuck closer to the game’s theme. I like Valve’s sense of humor, but you can explore that while still defining some boundaries (I’m looking at you, soldier wearing a robot costume made of boxes).

  18. Leaufai says:

    Big fan of TF2 when it was new, but when it became about whoring for achievements, hats, etc. I lost interest. Will never forget my single-handed defense as a demo of an entire sector in TC_Hydro. Must’ve held off two dozen or so for a couple of minutes. Those were good times.

  19. Blinky343 says:

    There’s only three of theses hats in the entire game if I’m reading this right. Who cares then? There’s a pretty vanishingly small chance you’ll even run into one of these people, and even then the stat boost isn’t all that impressive.

    It’s another experiment valve is running, there’s no need to be an alarmist grumbly-gus

    • Premium User Badge

      Malibu Stacey says:

      You seem to be lost sir. Being an alarmist grumbly-gus is a prerequisite for posting on certain article topics on this site.

    • Premium User Badge

      Craig Pearson says:

      I’m usually not a grumbly gus at all, but it’s sad to see them reward folk just for spending amounts of cash when there are so many other stats in TF2 that could be lauded.

      • sneetch says:

        Yeah, in a single life you could award longest killing streak, most healing, most repairs, longest distance ran, most caps, most backstabs, headshots, people set on fire and so on. Those are all exploitable but they’d be better than most money spent on X in 24 hours.

  20. Premium User Badge

    Cross says:

    This is the trend that made me shut down my TF2 server a week ago. Unless that 2012 big secret is truly amazing, i am not coming back.

    Nuclear Dawn, anyone?

  21. baekgom84 says:

    I loved Team Fortress Classic and tried my best to get into TF2, but there was always something about it that bothered me, and that was even before items and upgrades were a significant part of the game. The point where I gave up on it completely was when I, as a heavy, confronted a scout in a 1v1 situation and got completely annihilated, thanks to some sort of stun mechanic. It didn’t seem right to me that a scenario like that should be allowed to happen.

    • Premium User Badge

      Malibu Stacey says:

      Even without using the Sandman, killing a Heavy as Scout 1v1 isn’t exactly the most difficult thing ever conceived. Would you still be upset if the Scout simply dodged & blasted you with the Scattergun instead of stunning you with the Sandman? I expect so.

      It’s a multiplayer game, there will always be people better than you no matter what items are available or not.

      • baekgom84 says:

        I get what you’re saying, but if it had simply been a case of the scout being a far better player than me (and I don’t claim to be a great player), I would have been able to accept that. But if you had taken away the items, at least he would have had to work at it, and you would have been able to say that given the same scenario with players of roughly equivalent skill level, the scout would have had almost no chance. I just think that by adding all of these extra weapon and equipment options to each class, it upsets the overall balance and needlessly complicates the meta-game. I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in making this complaint.

      • Bhazor says:

        No the sandman was shit. End of.

        That, jarate and the original backburner were the trinity of Fuck Yous that put me off the game.

  22. Stevostin says:

    There is IMO a nice way to do the pay for free games working well and I nearly never see one ever try it. Make an achievement a requisite for a reward that has to be paid for. Yes you’re paying for a hat, but a hat that shows something specific you did. You earn the right to wear one, you pay for the actual item. It’s straight, it’s honnest and I know I’d be a sucker for this.

    Imagine : when you do your 1K kill with a weapon, you have an achievement and a window to buy the strange version of that weapon for 24h and a small price like €2. It’s pretty certain @1K kill that you’re pretty much into the game. So unless you can’t pay anything anyway, who wouldn’t jump on it ?

  23. Resonance says:

    The article is pure hyperbole.

    It’s a hat you earn for 24 hours to show off the fact you spent the most money. It’s a small, ultimately meaningless [since it’s not permanent] token to encourage players to spend more money. It offers no in-game advantage and is just a little bit of fun.

    The inclusion of these worthless hats do not spell the death of TF2…

  24. Burky says:

    I’m just surprised that there was such a demand in the hat market. I got a rare hat, jumped on a trading server out of curiosity and was disturbed at level of the money that people were prepared to throw at me for it.

    Are there all these rich nerds with heaps of spare time and no concept of money?

    Still, over the years I put 500 hours into a game that cost me $10 and enjoyed the evolution of features over time. It’s kinda hard to judge them for wanting to make a bit of money out of it when the base game is still highly enjoyable and now free.

  25. ado says:

    I don’t see what the big deal is as long as they keep the game out of the pay to win territory. All this does is it gives more incentive for people to spend dough on cosmetic user created content which can only benefit the game and the community.

  26. BillyBumbler00 says:

    People quitting over Valve making a place that customers can choose to shove money in is rather ridiculous. I mean, I could see where you’re coming from if anything you mentioned was gameplay affecting, but it’s not. The game hasn’t changed fundamentally, and if you didn’t read the tf2 blog or patch notes, you probably wouldn’t even notice the new items. I know I wouldn’t have.

    • Premium User Badge

      Malibu Stacey says:

      Billy, as the kids say these days “you’re doing it wrong”. Knee jerk reactions are what’s required here not measured & rational discourse!

      • Kollega says:

        I would ask you to stop acting like there’s nothing wrong with the game (crates, which are basically gambling, are definitely in the wrong), but i do not assume it’s going to have much effect.

        • Premium User Badge

          Malibu Stacey says:

          LOL I don’t even play TF2 anymore other than the odd double mix since I got Dota 2 access back in January however I’ve been playing it in pub servers & competitively since it was released so I think I have a pretty good grasp of the game to be able to correct all the naysayers here, most of whom by their own admission haven’t played in years if at all.

          Crates are perfectly easy to ignore. All you have to do use that delete button when you get one drop. Not exactly Rocket Surgery. I’ve bought exactly 0 items from the Mann-Co store but I still have about 25 keys in my backpack because people trade them for hats and/or metal so if you’re that bothered, you can open them without ever paying a penny.

          Stuff like this doesn’t sit well with me because by their own admission VALVe have been using TF2 as a test bed for everything they want to do in Dota 2 but considering all the microtransaction stuff in TF2 is completely 100% voluntary, I’m not that bothered.

        • ado says:

          What’s wrong with crates? I delete them instantly when I drop them and still have an inventory with a bunch of hats and weapons.

          Crates are supposed to bait you in to buying keys, you only lose if you give in to your own stupidity.

      • Zern says:

        I stand by my knee-jerk reaction. This article was actually just one more reason for me. Some things had a much bigger impact. For instance the stark contrast between last year’s “All proceeds of this 99$ hat go to charity” and february’s 100$ valentine’s gift.

        • Premium User Badge

          Malibu Stacey says:

          I must have missed the memo which forced everyone to buy these ridiculously overpriced, entirely cosmetic items I guess. Consider me suitably informed now & jerking my knee in the expected manner along with the rest of you.

          • Zern says:

            I guess they really are trying to see what works and what does not. There is also stuff in the Mann Co. store that I really like. Being able to reward the map creators is a tremendously good idea. But on the other hand I know someone out there has to be buying those keys in hope of an tiny chance at getting an unusual. I agree that the best option would be to just ignore and delete the crates.

  27. psychoconductor says:

    Look at all your different coloured hats!

  28. Maxheadroom says:

    so this isnt the ‘big news’ they’ve been hinting at then? Cos I seem to remember them stating that wouldn’t be a hat or a map

  29. Premium User Badge

    Gundato says:

    Obviously I am not the best person to comment on this, since I never actually got into TF2. I liked the concept (and had fun being a medic a few times), but it just needs way too much of a commitment to be any good.

    That being said, I was never really a fan of the unlock system. When it was purely achievement-based, it encouraged you to play. Unfortunately, too many of the achievements (melee X people in one life as a medic) just weren’t conducive to teamplay. And many more were VERY situational. Then they fixed that and started to make it random drops. The random drops are good since everyone has an equal shot, but it then just boils down to more of a time commitment. And now apparently you need to pay for the unlocks too with some sort of keys?

    Say what you will, but I think Battlefield 3 got it right. It takes the CoD style “Earn experience to unlock stuff” which encourages all play styles (but GREATLY favors team players). But, even better, the difference in guns and mods are not big enough to make a massive difference. If I use my m249 enough, I get a nice scope. But I could always use iron sights to hose people. If I keep playing as an Assault, I get access to a few more guns, but it is not like I have to stop using the ones I already have. And, unlike CoD, the unlocks don’t drastically change the gameplay (stuff like dropping a grenade on death). Yeah, long-time players have the advantage, but that is more skill than anything else.

    Obviously the BF3 model isn’t good for a free to play game, but EA sort of has the right idea with the current “pay to unlock everything” approach. While I think it would be stupid to pay for EVERYTHING, I would love to be able to pay for the “basic” gear from every class. I almost never play Recon because all the fun gear (I think even the sensor) need me to chug away with a sniper rifle and a respawn deploy nobody uses.

    • Premium User Badge

      Malibu Stacey says:

      No you don’t need to pay for the unlocks, they’re still random drops or can be crafted using other random drops.

      Also the commitment to be any good hasn’t changed since release because the default weapons are still generally preferable to any unlock weapons. Unlocks tend to be good in specific situations but outside of that specific situation you’re going to get pasted where as with the default you would’ve had a reasonable chance of survival.

      Also you’re praising a game which makes you grind for stuff just to be able to compete on an equal footing with everyone else who has been grinding for stuff.

      • sneetch says:

        I believe he’s talking about these unlocks; the Strange Parts are only found in crates and you have to buy keys to unlock them.

        • Premium User Badge

          Malibu Stacey says:

          And don’t affect gameplay in any way at all since they’re simply a way to show off stats to other players thereby rendering the whole point moot.

          • sneetch says:

            Well, your point that it doesn’t affect gameplay is true but his point doesn’t have anything to do with whether or not it affects gameplay but rather that you need to pay for these unlocks.

          • Premium User Badge

            Malibu Stacey says:

            Which aren’t actually unlocks but modifications to existing items which simply add a new stat it tracks and in no way changes the functioning of the item with regards to gameplay. Hence moot point.

          • sneetch says:

            You’re splitting hairs there, I believe the preferred name in TF2 is “Item” but unlocks, equipment, modifications, you can call them whatever you want (this article refers to them as unlocks), but if you want them you must pay for them; you cannot craft them, they won’t drop outside of crates they’re for pay only. That is the point.

            Simply declaring it “moot” does nothing. Their existence may be irrelevant to you but not to others.

          • Asskicker says:

            You still don’t have to pay for them, you can just buy them with metal. (dropped weapons)

    • ado says:

      Clearly you are since you have no clue what you’re talking about :P

      You can gain items in the game by: unlocking them via achievement, crafting them, trading them, buying them and dropping them.

      Also, out of all online FPS games out there I’d say that TF2 requires the least commitment from you, either to be good at the game or to have fun with it. And xp based unlock systems in games like CoD and BF can go straight to the unbalanced and time-wasting hell from which they came.

  30. shadow9d9 says:

    I have well over 1000 hours played in TF2 and I never cared about hats or these other gimmicks. I give my hats away. If I wanted to play dressup, I’d buy a barbie.

  31. bakka bakka bakka says:

    I haven’t regularly played the game since the last Halloween update and the Christmas update killed my interest in really going back to my previous zest for TF2. What the game really needs is a rebalance, bug fix, and general clean-up. It’s too bad that that won’t be happening, we played a hell of a lot of TF2 for 3 or 4 years.

  32. deanimate says:

    I’ve never understood this interest in useless shit like a stupid hat. Oh wow I’m wearing a hat that makes no difference to the game play. It annoys me more than it should I know but really….are people into this crap over 10 years old?

  33. pkt-zer0 says:

    In some twisted way, this actually makes sense for TF2. They’re experimenting with how much stupid bullshit people will let them get away with. Apparently the answer is “quite a lot”. It’s not greed: they’re only doing this because it works.

    So the obvious question is: WHAT’S WRONG WITH ALL YOU PEOPLE?!?

  34. amorpheous says:

    Three hats. That most definitely means Half Life 3 is coming.

  35. The Godzilla Hunter says:

    IMHO its not really that big of a problem. Most of the hats and such are completely cosmetic. And for the unlocks, there are only a few non-achievement based unlocks that are actually useful (degreaser, Machina, tomislav and maybe the liberty launcher?). If you really want to get one of those, and are not lucky enough to get them in a drop, it is very easy to either craft them, or to trade for them.

  36. Premium User Badge

    Malibu Stacey says:

    Hatters gonna’ hat.

  37. Dana says:

    I dont care. Those are hats. Hell, I salute them for milking the fancy ladies without unbalancing the game.

  38. D3xter says:

    Yes, I saw this and quit Team Fortress 2 back when they introduced the entire “Mannconomy/Hat”-thing, I also saw the same thing with Left4Dead2, even if other people still won’t recognize it, other than that Valve still is largely stellar, especially compared to the competition…

  39. Oof says:

    The last time I thought Valve were “good guys” was when they put out the Orange Box. How many years has it been?

  40. Caddrel says:

    Or, you could say it was nice reward for people who support community map makers and give gifts.

    There are servers where people can play the vanilla TF2. People complaining here can easily play on those servers, but maybe posting about it is more fun?

    • Asskicker says:

      Exactly my thoughts, I’m server manager for a small community and that community wanted a vanilla only server. Guess what, nobody EVER played on it.

  41. Asskicker says:

    I really don’t understand what everyone is complaining about, it has always been like this hasn’t it? You can’t really craft the nice stuff you want, but you can buy it with items you collect while playing.

    I havn’t spent a dime on this game (excep for buying the orange box) and I have locked up about 1300 hours into the game, and I’m still playing and I always enjoy it when new items are added. Just today I bought an airshot counter for 3.66 refined, I got what I wanted and I didn’t have to spend any money, all I did was play.

    I’m not really understanding all this Valve hate, what have they done wrong? Releasing awesome games, releasing mod tools for them, free DLC, making their games F2P… Sigh, people will never be happy.

  42. MarvinPA says:

    Just seems like Valve making it easier for people to give them lots of money for no real reason, I guess? Pretty much exactly the same as the Valentine’s thing they did. I don’t see the big deal really, if people want to throw absurd amounts of money at them then it seems pretty sensible on Valve’s part to make that possible (and these things have always been entirely cosmetic).

  43. OfficerMeatbeef says:

    I have to say that I don’t really feel any outrage on this one at all. And that’s coming from someone who threw together a fairly lengthy screed against the horrible BF3 unlock system and its consequential newly-unveiled “pay to skip it!” option on another forum. Now THAT makes me sad. This, not so.

    So the first issue with this article is that it seems to be factually inaccurate on at least one very important point: the claim that these special hats give “a significant stat bonus” seems quite untrue; from what I can determine, none of those hats seems to give any kind of stat bonus at all. Pure cosmetic as with pretty much all the others. (EDIT: Looks like that bit has been scrubbed from the article now. Ok then!)

    The second issue I take is that I think this article glosses over the means and intent by which people earn these (again, purely cosmetic) hats quite unfairly. Let’s examine them, then:

    One hat goes to the person who gives the most gifts. Well, that one is pretty clear: someone is getting rewarded for their generosity to other players with a fancy hat for a day. Don’t see anything wrong with that, seems like a good thing to encourage. That money goes to Valve, but it is other players, not the one putting the money in, that gets the benefit.

    One hat goes to the person who buys the most map stamps. So we should review what map stamps actually are: they are ways to support maps made by the community, and every dollar goes towards them. Valve doesn’t get a penny for that. So there, you’re getting a special hat day for giving cash to other players like yourself who developed fun maps, originally with no expectation of any kind of recompense. That seems pretty thoughtful, to me, and another great way for Valve to encourage people to keep supporting and creating great stuff for the game.

    So the last one is perhaps the least clear-cut: getting a hat for winning the most duels. This is the only one where Valve gets all the money AND the player buying in is the only one who gets any benefit (which, again, is simply in the form of a purely cosmetic fancyhat). Coincidentally enough, this is also the one which someone has to earn by skill in addition to spending cash, as simply buying duel items doesn’t mean you’ll win the duels themselves. So one could just consider this one as buying into a competition where the prize is a status item for a day. Sure, why not, people do that with any and all amateur competitive activities all the time. Let’em!

    So considering all that, even if the hats DID offer some kind of gameplay stat bonus (which, again, they don’t), I don’t think I’d care anyway. That bonus would be fairly earned, and again, it would only be for a single day and then for only 3 players out of… hell, I don’t even know what the numbers are for TF2 right now, but I’m willing to bet my hats that 3 players out of whatever it is is such a drastically low percentage that your odds of even encountering one of them on a server is rather low, much less running against a dangerous team of powerhat-wielding moneybags (which, again, do not exist).

    As for the Strange items: also don’t give a shit. More cosmetics. If you want to have’em, great, enjoy. I won’t call you stupid for it, either. Spend your money how you want, there’s much dumber ways to do it than supporting the game you love.

    ADDENDUM: The more I think about this whole thing, the more I realize how far removed from the article’s position I am: this update doesn’t just not make me sad, it makes me happier that Valve is still finding ways to bring in money for not just themselves but contributing fans in ways that also encourage players to be more generous and supportive in the community. Why should that make anyone sad?

    • Brise Bonbons says:

      Very good points here. Unfortunately they don’t address any of my *personal* issues with TF2, but they do illustrate why “Valve is become an evil overlord” isn’t quite accurate yet.

  44. Jason Moyer says:

    Is it possible to run a server that only uses the content the game originally shipped with and if so, are there people doing it?

    • Premium User Badge

      Malibu Stacey says:

      Yes as I said on the first page, see item_whitelist.txt.

      This is how the competitive leagues & tournaments do it but there’s nothing stopping you doing it on your own public server. Hell you could even use a server plug-in to do it on a public server to be able to turn them on & off at will without having to fiddle with rcon commands if you want (can’t use plug-ins on match servers hence why item_whitelist.txt is used as it’s supported by the TF2 server by default).

  45. Premium User Badge

    Monchberter says:

    They’re continuing with it because it’s highly profitable and i’d hazard that the majority of people are not dropping money on TF2, but trading. There will always be a few pulling cash out their wallets, but frankly it’s the community that has nurtured this monster – (why some hats are worth ludicrous real world prices never really made sense to me, but then I did seek and trade for a Pyro hoodie that bubbles!)

    And anyway, the crates and stranges and the huge majority of hats do nothing to impact upon the core gameplay. They’re baubles, and there’s no need to buy them.

  46. AMonkey says:

    They don’t provide any gameplay or competitive advantage so I really don’t care.

  47. MonolithicTentacledAbomination says:

    Wow, Va£ve really is the next €A/Activi$ion

    • MisteroMikey says:

      Not to be mean, but that is completely untrue.

      Valve is the ONLY developer that has community made items IN THE GAME, and they are encouraging more and more people to do their work for them, and those people then get recognized for it.

      Valve is not becoming a money whore, specifically because they allow people to use this thing called an IDLE server, where you can do something else while your player diligently dies again and again, getting you items over your 10 hour period of item recieval. There is a trade system, and also a gift system, and using these two, you can get tons of unique items, if your willing to man up and spend the five bucks for two keys, which are valuable items in the TF2 trading community.

      Also this game was released in 2007, now think about that. 2007 is 5 years ago. Most companies (like Activision) has comepletely forgot about games from that timeframe. IE COD 4. I know its broken, because I used to play it. But that is besides the point. There are virtually no hackers on the game, except for the few on the servers that don’t have very much support, and those have bad ping anyways.

      Also a VERY good trading site I recommend, is Team Fortress 2 Warehouse. It uses a credit system, in which you must trade an item to them, you get credits, and you can get something else. Like the real world. Only better. Because all the items are stored on bots’ accounts. They automatically send you a friend request, and you put the items in the trade box, the bot tells you the selling price for that specific item. You trade with it, and boom you have credits to buy an item. Anyways the full system is explained on their website. http://www.tf2wh.com/

  48. TechnicalBen says:

    Even for free, I’ve given up on a game whose content is now so large and yet so limited. There are parts of it on my HDD that I don’t even think I’ll ever see (Golden Wrench anyone!?). This looks like more of that. :(

    Oh, and I cannot even afford the bandwidth all the updates are eating. :P

  49. Legion23 says:

    Valve makes more and more questionable choices, not only with Team Fortress 2 in my opinion (other examples would be L4D2 as a standalone title, changing Portal 1 for promotional reasons, implementing an item shop in Portal 2 etc.) Seriously I find this trend worrying with them.

  50. Jengaman says:

    My favorite gaming expierence ever was playing payload maps for hours and hours. It’s sad to see a game so balanced get so broken. Ever since that stupid fucking charging targe thing this game has lost all of its core values that it had when it was released. If you watch that original commentary in the game and listen to what they say, you can hear all of thier own rules they broke.
    I wish i had my favourite game back is all…