Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time.
If so, which version did you play? Team Fortress 2 has changed so much during its lifetime that it might have been a tight, retrospectively austere cartoon multiplayer shooter that valued teamwork, or a cavalcade of wacky weaponry and that seems more geared towards chaos than consideration.
I like both versions of the game, and I think the core pleasures of the game remain even after a thousand hats and weapon modifications were added. Because to me, Team Fortress 2 was always about small, independently satisfying interactions.
I’m talking about the fun of rocket jumping as the soldier, of double-jumping as the Scout, of backstabbing as the spy, as airblasting people off ledges as the Pyro. I liked that I could join a server, read the game over a few minutes, and know which class to go to make myself most useful to my team, but it was these simpler satisfactions that I was really playing for.
So I’ve no problem with adding to those satisfactions. The best addition for me was the Sniper’s bow, because bows and arrows are always wonderful and there’s nothing more satisfying than pinning an enemy to the wall with a headshot. But there were plenty of other joys introduced as each class was expanded with new weapons, and the game was expanded with new modes.
There’s always grumbling about what Team Fortress 2 became, but let’s try to stay positive. What era of the game did you like best, and why?