Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Adam Smith)

It's a week of updates, plural, and they are in no way alive

While Valve prepare to release their Team Fortress 2 Halloween update, the mod community have been highlighting some of the most bone-chilling, spine-tingling items submitted to the Steam Workshop in a week-long event rather splendidly titled, Night of the Living Update. So, do you want the temperature of your skeletal apparatus to decrease? Do you desire spinal sensations of a peculiar nature? Traipse to the website and explore the blood-soaked offerings on display, some of which may make their way into the official update. This is particularly horrible. With two more nights of updates to go, I’m hoping for a Cthulhu mask. What’s the neatest thing you’ve found in the Workshop?

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Jim Rossignol)

He's bursting out of a bear.Needless to say, they’re celebrating with a big old hat-infrastructure update to Team Fortress 2. The ability for people create and submit and submit items has apparently now earned the community creators $2m, and Valve obviously want that trend to continue, as the update is a big ‘un in that direction. They explain: “The Manniversary Update includes several new features, including Steam Workshop, an improved item submission system that allows community item-creators to test, share and track the status of their creations. The entire TF2 community will also be allowed to participate by browsing, rating and offering feedback on all submitted items. The Steam Workshop will be fully integrated with the Steam community. In addition to the Workshop, the Manniversary Update will also ship 30 new hats and cosmetic items, an item decal system, weeklong “try before you buy” item tryouts, loadout presets, multiple miscellaneous items slots, improved game performance, and a new taunt.”

Everything will be on sale until Monday, too. The details, they are here.

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Alec Meer)

No, you don't have to pay for the hats

Adam wrote about visually delightful side-scrolling TF2 demake Team Fortress Arcade just the other week. It’s true, he did! I have proof. The problem was the game wasn’t actually out then, which looked like we were teasing you with a cool thing you couldn’t actually play. That’s because we are rotters, and want you to experience only suffering. But now it is out, which means you can play it right now.

Don’t think that gets you off the hook, though. We’ll find some new way to make you suffer any minute now. Maybe it’ll be my forthcoming Xenonauts hands-on preview. Maybe it’ll be Jim’s review of the Deus Ex: Human Revolution DLC. Maybe it’ll be that dead stoat I hid under your bed. Or maybe we’ll say something you disagree with about a game you’re fond of. Truly, our cruelty knows no bounds.

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Adam Smith)

A team of two is no team at all

Some of you may remember a dinky demake of Left 4 Dead that Alec posted about at the tail-end of the previous decade. The chap behind it, Eric Ruth, clearly loves nothing more than making retro-pixel-tributes because he’s done a few more as well. There’s one about electronic rackets (not to be confused with Pong, which was electronic racquets) and another starring some gaudy green space marine. You know of what I speak>. His upcoming project is another Valve-inspired title though, and it looks like a lot of fun. It’s Team Fortress 2 Arcade: a sidescrolling beat/shoot ‘em up. Here’s an interview and some gameplay footage captured on film by piki geek.

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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Adam Smith)

A man signs into his Steam account, this morningA few weeks ago, Valve started beta testing its Steam Trading feature and people have swapped over a million items since then. Were the majority of them hats? I don’t have those figures, but the entrails in this animal say “yes”. The trading feature is now officially live and you can trade all sorts of gubbins with one another. Clarification: “all sorts of gubbins” means Team Fortress 2, Portal 2 and Spiral Knights items so not a great deal has actually changed. Perhaps more interesting than item swapping is the ability to trade unredeemed games, although do note the qualifier ‘unredeemed’. Steam is not letting you swap grubby used goods. There’s a FAQ here. The fact that every public profile now comes with an inventory means that Steam is officially an RPG in which buying cheap games is the grind. The plan is to bring more developers on board in the coming months, so one day you may be able to trade the Incas for a pair of cowboy boots. Truly, we live in exciting times.

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Jim Rossignol)

Oh, I guess this is just about expired, but there’s probably still time to get on Team Fortress 2 and receive your party bag for the 15 year birthday hurrah of Team Fortress. Yes, it is that long since the class-based mod originally appeared, spawning an entire sub-genre of FPS, and some of the most popular games of all time. If you log into TF2 before the 24 hours expires (I am not quite sure how long is left) you will get a party hat (obviously), a noise-maker, and a free cake (remodelled health pack). Mmm, virtual.

Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Alec Meer)

Valve’s in-game TF2 item store is about to become an out-of-game item store. They’re trialling something called Steam Trading, which primarily involves swapping your TF2 unlocks (i.e. those damnable hats, mostly) for other games.

It’s an old-fashioned barter system in new-fangled clothes. What happens is you invite someone on your Steam friends list or who you’re in a group chat with to trade, and can offer up your various TF2 items to the other guy. In return, he or she can offer you other TF2 items – or to gift a game to you. You can’t do this with any old game in your Steam library – only games you’ve purchased from the store as a gift, or received as an Extra Copy.
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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Jim Rossignol)


The internet’s appetite for dressing up as videogame characters and acting out the activities we usually play on screen is boundless, as is evidenced by this rather high-quality live action Team Fortress 2 video. It’s a familiar tale of sapping a sentry gun. The film was made by some chaps called Corridor Digital. Go watch, below.
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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Richard Cobbett)

Well, that was quick. Only the other day, rockets were spotted in assorted Team Fortress 2 maps, and now Soldiers everywhere are tooled up with sci-fi weapons designed by the special-effects geniuses at WETA Workshop. (You may have seen their work in movies like Lord of the Rings, Avatar, King Kong, and about half the other blockbusters in recent years.) Read this comic to see their discovery, and visit the Mann Co. store to witness the might of Dr. Grordbort’s Infallible Aether Oscillators, and the inevitable hat that goes with them.

But, we hear you ask, what are> Dr. Grordbort’s Infallible Aether Oscillators?

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Rock, Paper, Shotgun - contact@rockpapershotgun.com (Alec Meer)

Another mystery is why it just took me five> tries to spell ‘mystery’ correctly. A better msytery is why some new and rather large new scenery objects have started showing up in selected Team Fortress 2 maps. They look like rocket ships, or possibly just rockets – but what do they mean>? I put ‘mean’ in italics there, so it would sound like I was whining like a pitiful child who wants everything nownownow. Did it work?
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