Oct 26, 2012
TF2 Blog




In much the same way that most of the characters in the 1983 haunted elevator movie “The Lift” were warned – repeatedly - to take the stairs, we warned you that the frankly terrifying Scream Fortress Halloween event was coming. And now it’s here, and you’re scared, and you don’t have anyone to blame but yourself. This year, you’ll experience the tear-squirting terror of being trapped in a living nightmare with a vindictive ghost, just like everyone in M. Night Shyamalan’s epic of elevator haunting, “Devil”. Before we get to the horror proper, though, we’d like to thank everyone in the community who contributed such terrific items on short notice. Alright, enough talking. As female reporter Jennifer says just before the final elevator battle in “The Shaft”: It’s going DOWN!

TF2 Blog




Welcome to your DOOM... AARON A. AARONSON!



Yes, we're talking directly to YOU, Aaron A. Aaronson! This prophecy of your death is coming from INSIDE YOUR OWN COMPUTER! AWOOOOOO!



Hello, everyone else! What you just experienced was a brave new frontier in Halloween scaring technology: personalized terror! Rather than generically scaring all of you a little, from this Halloween forward, we’re going to scare one specific person... TO DEATH! Admittedly, much like the Human Genome Project, this is going to take some time. So everybody be patient - you'll all be scared eventually. Also, if any of you know Aaron B. Aaronson and don't want to deprive him of the thrill of dying of terror next year, don’t tell him about this blog post.



But just because we’re all now living in the amazing far future of scaring, being frightened in ways that until moments ago seemed impossible, that doesn’t mean we don’t have some more traditional Halloween horror planned for you. First of all, we’re happy and scared to announce the Fourth Annual Scream Fortress Halloween update, dedicated to the loving memory of Aaron A. Aaronson. It doesn’t ship until tomorrow, but you can read all the eerie details here.



Secondly, we’re pleased to present the first in our new series of Halloween-themed release notes. It’s a terrifying little tidbit of fearful fact reporting we call “John Carpenter’s Changes to the Functionality of Halloween Gifts”! Last year, gifts spawned publicly and could be claimed by whoever got there first. This year, players will receive private gift spawns that they can grab at their leisure without having to race everyone on the server for them. The end. Directed and programmed by John Carpenter.


Oct 24, 2012
TF2 Blog




Those of you who follow the private lives of TF2's mercenaries might be aware that Soldier's had an ongoing roommate problem. Specifically, his problem is that his roommate is a powerful magician. Things reach their logical, terrifying conclusion in a comic we call... "Doom-Mates!"



TF2 Blog




Since 99.9999% of you probably read that title and went directly to the Mann Co. Store, we assume we're now speaking to the three of you who don't believe in reading titles. And now that we've restated the importance of reading the title, we assume those three are gone too. We're essentially talking to ourselves right now, but Valve has a minimum word count for all blog posts that we haven't quite reached yet. Did we mention that items will be anywhere from 25% to 75% off? Well, we have now. Also, the minimum word count is 100 words. Bam!


TF2 Blog
Updates to Team Fortress 2, Day of Defeat: Source and Half-Life 2: Deathmatch have been released. The updates will be applied automatically when your Steam client is restarted. The major changes include:


Source Engine Changes (TF2, DoD:S, HL2:DM)

  • Fixed the "disconnect" command regression from the previous update
  • Fixed tools like vbsp working with new model format
  • Fixed a con_logfile ConVar exploit


Team Fortress 2

  • Fixed a common "FindModel" crash for replays
  • Fixed the Crafty Hair not using styles for the yellow and brown hair
  • Improved the "Restore" UI for customizing items in backpack
  • Fixed floating arrows on carried objects
  • Mann vs. Machine

    • Added a penalty system to deter players from repeatedly abandoning Mann Up games
    • Corrected the respawn time for the Mannslaughter mission
    • Updated MissionCycle behavior. Servers will always cycle to a mission listed in the MissionCycle file.


Oct 17, 2012
TF2 Blog





There are some words that, if I have to use them to describe a man, mean that man is dead to me. Also to everybody else. Because I will kill that man. One of those words is "hatless". The other is "coward".



I gave you mercs one simple thing to do: Defend Mann Co. from an unstoppable robot horde. Now Bidwell's telling me some of you are abandoning the fight in the middle of attacks. Firstly: What am I even paying you in found money that falls out of robots for?



Secondly — actually, put this first, it's more important — I am coming for you.



But thirdly, Bidwell's drummed up some penalties for any coward he catches running away from the frontlines. If any of you cowards out there find these penalties too harsh, don't worry about it, because see Point #1 (I am coming for you). Whatever penalties you get will seem like a day at the Being Afraid store (or wherever it is cowards like to shop) when I get my big angry hands on your beady little heads.



This just got signed by Saxton Hale





For more information, visit the updated Mann vs. Machine FAQ.




TF2 Blog
ETF2L is starting up its third season of Highlander next week. Last year they had over 300 sign-ups and are hoping for even more this year! Signups start Monday, October 15 and are open through the week until October 23. The season is slated to start the first week in November.



As an added bonus, to help promote the new season, on Sunday October 14 there is a Highlander match scheduled between one of the best teams in Europe and North America: Teams SNSD and The Syndicate. The match will be broadcast on VanillaTV at 9:15PM CET and is a joint effort between VanillaTV, ETF2L, and eXtv who are all going to be covering the event. More details are available here about that match.

Oct 9, 2012
TF2 Blog






New Tours!



Much like in Goldilocks and the Three Bears, specifically the part where Goldilocks broke into a bear's house looking for a place to sleep, some of you thought the one Tour of Duty we shipped with Mann vs. Machine was too hard. Others of you found it too soft. A lot of you thought it was just right.



In the fable, of course, Goldilocks held the defenseless bear family at gunpoint until her boyfriend Chet got there, at which point things turned truly grim. This is where our story diverges from that true crime drama, because we've sidestepped the issue by adding more Tours of Duty to MvM mode. Now, in addition to Operation Steel Trap (hard), we've got Operation Oil Spill (less hard) and Operation Gear Grinder (very hard). As Chet might say, "You goddamn bears are in for a lonnnnng night."




New Loot!



In the same way that Goldilocks and Chet drove off covered in bear blood and honey with a flatscreen TV and fourteen dollars in cash, we've cooked up some tour-specific loot you can take to your hideout in Florida. Just like the Botkiller heads awarded to survivors of Operation Steel Trap, we've got some brand new spoils of war you can only get in these new tours: rusty, blood-covered 'bot heads for the intermediate-level Operation Oil Spill, and some 24-carat diamond 'bot heads for the expert-level Operation Gear Grinder, so those of you players who survive the tour can show off a little bling to prove it.



(Remember: as always, loot is the only difference between MvM on the unofficial "Boot Camp" server and official "Mann Up" servers. Otherwise the gameplay is identical.)




Improved Matchmaking!



You can now select multiple missions you'd like to play, to maximize the chances of finding compatible players as quickly as possible. We’ve also added some handy buttons that'll let you select all missions of a particular difficulty level, or all missions not yet marked off on a Tour of Duty.




Lastly, like when Chet and Goldilocks beat a retired cop to death in Boca Raton and were sent to separate federal prisons, when your MvM group beat a mission, we used to disband the group. Now we've made it so that when you beat a mission to death in Boca Raton or elsewhere, party the other players on the server are sent back to the matchmaking screen as a group, so you can keep playing together.


TF2 Blog
Updates to Team Fortress 2, Day of Defeat: Source and Half-Life 2: Deathmatch have been released. The updates will be applied automatically when your Steam client is restarted. The major changes include:


Source Engine Changes (TF2, DoD:S, HL2:DM)

  • Fixed HTTP downloads on Mac not sending an HTTP referer


Team Fortress 2

  • Updated materials/models for the Champ Stamp, King of Scotland Cape, Stovepipe Sniper Shako, and Freedom Staff
  • Fixed a server crash that could occur if a Spy was disguised holding the Gunslinger
  • Fixed the Lacking Moral Fiber Mask being tagged as a misc item instead of a hat
  • Fixed the Gunslinger not accepting "Sappers Removed" strange parts
  • Overhealed players that are bleeding or on fire can now pickup healthkits to remove these conditions
  • Added tf_dingalingaling_repeat_delay (default 0) which limits how often the dingalingaling sound can play
  • Removed outdated tip about the Spy's Enforcer
  • Updated the localization files
  • Vote system

    • Allow kicking of connected players that haven't joined a team in Mann vs. Machine
    • Added sv_vote_issue_kick_spectators_mvm (default 0) which allows players to kick anyone that isn't team invaders, as long as they've passed the sv_vote_issue_kick_min_connect_time_mvm timer, if enabled

  • Mann vs. Machine

    • Added two new tours of duty, each with new unique loot:

      • Operation Oil Spill, with 6 new intermediate skill missions
      • Operation Gear Grinder, with 3 new expert skill missions

    • If a player connects to a MvM game through matchmaking and loses their connection, their spot will be held for a brief duration and they will be given a chance to reconnect
    • After victory on a Mann Up server, the players will be put into a lobby together.
    • Improved matchmaking searching status screen

  • Mann vs. Machine balance changes:

    • Explosive Headshots

      • damage is now 150 regardless of upgrade level
      • damage is done in one tick instead of the previous six
      • added a slowing effect based on upgrade level (50%-80% slow, 2-4 second duration)
      • radius still scales with upgrade level (unchanged)

    • Marked For Death duration reduced to 7 seconds from 15 seconds when the target is a giant robot
    • Reduced the "effect bar recharge rate increased" upgrade from 20% increments with an 80% cap to 15% increments with a 60% cap


TF2 Blog




In just under a month, we'll start accepting entries for shorts made with the Source Filmmaker, Valve's filmmaking tool. You'll be able to submit in five different categories (Best Action, Best Drama, Best Comedy, Best Original Universe and now Best Replay) with the hope of taking home a Saxxy at the star-studded Second Annual Saxxy Awards. So if you've got an SFM opus in you, crack those knuckles and get creating — November 1st'll be here in no time.



Also, a couple of quick changes for entrants:




We've Added a Replay Category


The Source Filmmaker is the perfect resource for creators looking to dramatize the TF2 mercenaries' off-hours — but after we announced the Saxxy rules, we realized we'd under-represented some of the great dramatic, comedic or just plain violently entertaining moments in-game. So we've added a new category to celebrate all the creators out there who'd rather make their movie magic on the battlefield.



You Can Use Non-SFM Tools for Post-Production


Because the SFM didn't ship with a few post-production features, like titling and transitions, we've decided to let people use other effects and editing tools for this year's contest.




Remember, though, that nothing makes us happier than people using and giving feedback on the SFM. We want this tool to keep getting better and better, and to do that, we'll need creative folks like you pushing the SFM in new directions.



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