With the success of the AI systems of Left 4 Dead, we've been continuing to develop these technologies to create new kinds of game experiences. Team Fortress 2 is an excellent "sandbox" for explorations of this sort, and we've been quietly doing so for much of this last year. Some of the results of these explorations are TF "bots" — AI-driven player proxies with simulated humanlike senses, reaction times, and tactics. Although the TFBots are not yet complete, they play a pretty decent game of King of the Hill.
We thought you might enjoy testing your skill against these work-in-progress digital killing machines.
Victory on the Internet Day has been declared! The war is over! Who won? We don't know! Yet!
Luckily, I, Robin Walker, was up all night building a kill-calculating machine for just such an eventuality. We turned it on, the building filled with smoke, and right now a fireman is yelling at me to leave the building with everyone else. I'll leave when they pry this tiny netbook out of my cold dead hands. Or when an angry fireman fireman-carries me out of the office, which is what is happening right now. Anyway, once all the firemen calm down, we'll announce the War results with today's huge update. To pass the time, go get yourself a fresh mouse and start reloading this page as fast as you possibly can.
It all comes down to this. I'd give you a motivational speech right now, but the time you wasted reading it would be less time you spent making a difference on the battlefield. Go ahead and break the bad news to your grandfather: YOU are officially now the greatest generation.
Adding in the points awarded to our recent Propaganda Contest winners—60,000 frags added to the Killed Demomen score and 25,000 added to the Killed Soldier score—the war currently stands neck-and-neck at 5,727,928 Killed Soldiers to 5,742,720 Killed Demos. We need to stress to you that we have not gamed these numbers in any way: After a solid week of gut-grinding combat and an astonishing 11,470,648 total kills, the Demomen and Soldiers are separated by a mere 14,792 points.
Soldiers continue to hold the lead in the war—but like an M&M lodged up their collective noses, the Demoman refuses to melt away quietly. In other M&M-Stuck-Up-Drew-Wolf's-Nose metaphor news, the Soldier's lead remains thin as a candy coating. In fact, judging from our most recent numbers (4923531 Soldiers killed to 5056134 Demomen killed), the Demo actually seems to be closing the gap as the War hurtles to a close.
The Soldier/Demo war has generated more email than any event in Team Fortress history. The number one question I'm being asked is "are you going to publish any new information over the weekend?" Absolutely we are. In fact, here's some news right now: As of THIS MOMENT, there is still an M&M lodged up TF artist Drew Wolf's nose. Drew's in the hospital, and the entire team's thoughts and prayers go out to that brave little peanut M&M. Well, have a great weekend everyone!