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Team Fortress 2 - From Old To New 99

Posted by Zonk
from the i-call-shotgun dept.
As the Beta period for the incredibly fun Team Fortress 2 winds down, the website Rock, Paper, Shotgun offers up several pieces on the title. If you played the original TF and want to know how things have changed, they've got an in-depth series of posts on the nine classes. If you're more interested in the evolution of TF2 as a concept, the first of a two-part interview with game designers Robin Walker and Charlie Brown highlights the long road between there and here: "The arc of TF2 is something that's probably familiar to a lot of amateur developers or designers. When we got here the first thing we built was overly complex, very hard core, almost impenetrable to anyone who wasn't familiar with FPSs in general. And as we found as we played it, wasn't more fun because of it. I think one of the things we've learned as designers over the time we've been here is to better preserve our ideas while still making them more understandable ... If I looked back at various designs in the different versions of TF2, then I think that's the thing that moved the most. We were always doing interesting classes, interesting weapons, but I think the thing we succeeded at the most, that we were failing at the most, was that nugget of acceptability relative to depth." As for the best class, I tend to agree with Jerry.
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Team Fortress 2 - From Old To New

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  • it's the first fps since, hmmm, the original counter strike way back (around 1.5) that has me hooked and doesn't feel like yet another quake/doom/ut rehash. The polish level is amazing, and the art is just mind-blowing, amazing how they were able to create something so unique and yet make it run so well even on non super cutting edge hardware.

    major kudos to valve!
  • by vertinox (846076) on Monday October 01, 2007 @03:29PM (#20814659)
    I sort of had my doubts when I saw they were releasing TF2, but I'm slowly warming to the current concept.

    Back in 1997 when TF came out gameplay on the internet was very campy (literally) and very platform rocket jumping-esque. The original TF was a gem on Quakeworld because it provided more than just death match but rather a team cooperation game with different classes.

    Eventually, I went on to other games like Tribes, Counter Strike, and DoD and when I saw that the game was going back to its roots I had doubts that gameplay would work anymore since for a while they seemed to be taking a whole new direction with a more realistic atmosphere like counterstrike.

    But then I saw their art direction and rather than focusing on realism like counter strike, they made it look more cartoonish and platform jumpy which basically how things were back in 97 (Quake, Turok, and Tomb Raider were all out then).

    Of course it could be just nostalgia.
    • TF2: AKA (Score:5, Interesting)

      by IndustrialComplex (975015) on Monday October 01, 2007 @04:12PM (#20815377)
      The Incredibles Deathmatch.

      Everything about the art direction in the game reminds me of that movie... and I love it.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Mex (191941)
        Watch the Developer's Commentary on TF2. It's really interesting, and they mention they took inspiration from a 50's artist, which I forget the name of, but clearly the Incredibles ripped him off too.
    • One thing that really bothers me about TF2 (based on gameplay videos I've watched) is that when your team loses a game you'll be unable to attack until the next round begins. During this time the enemy team can freely frag you and there's nothing you can do about it. DoD has this "feature" as well, and it always made my blood boil with rage. Why would I want to play TF2 multiplayer when they have something like that in it? I may as well play by myself and repeatedly suicide with pipe bombs or rockets. I mig
      • by Behrooz (302401)
        Gawd, cry me a river. TF2 doesn't even keep track of deaths, but since you're so determined to do so, you may want to consider going back and camping some more counter-strike...
        • Where did I say this has anything to do with my kills to deaths ratio? Nowhere. It has nothing to do with my KDR. It seems everyone here is unable to deal with this subject without the use of ridiculous strawmen. People accuse me of being againts teamplay or being obsessed with KDR, even though this has nothing to do with either of those things.

          As for camping in Counter-Strike, it's actually a part of the gameplay mechanics so I don't know why the fuck you think it's supposed to be a bad thing, or why you e
      • For some reason TF2 attracts people who make a huge deal out of absolute non-issues, stuff that they are virtually alone in caring about. Recently a guy in the official forums was being abusive about the voice of the announcer, of all things, saying it was so annoying he had to turn off the sound. Mind you the announcer speaks about 4 times during a match... In the end he got so enraged, he got banned from the forums.
        So yeah, I think we have other things to complain about the game, although they seem to hav
  • How I miss the old 28.8 and the origins of online CTF based gaming. Team fortress was certainly the most advanced game of its time with a balance and gameplay that I'll never find again. TF2 is a great mod and a decade later shows the concept of team fortress can still provide a great game even in todays video game market. Take me back to the days when games had a great supporting community of map makers and server modders (best was team fortress regular on quake levels with grapple, sounds weird but was EX
    • How I miss the old 28.8 and the origins of online CTF based gaming.

      28.8.. such luxury. While in my day we made due with 9600. No fancy smancy k at the end.
      • 28.8.. such luxury. While in my day we made due with 9600. No fancy smancy k at the end.

        Pffft. I remember back when it was referred to as 'baud' and the numbers were measured in triple, or if you were really lucky, quadruple, digits.
        • by cthellis (733202)
          If you did not cut your teeth on 300 BAUD, you did not truly live!
          • by danlock4 (1026420)
            300 baud, pulse-dial-only...

            I felt privileged because it was direct-connect instead of having cups for a handset to be placed in. :-)
            • by cthellis (733202)
              Yeah, me too... I liked the cool factor of those handset-cradles, though! Where is it, where is it...? Ah, here it is [atarimuseum.com]!

              Hell of an upgrade when I went to the Avatex 2400 [recycledgoods.com] (could only find the 1200 BAUD model of this design in a good pic), though. I just about wet myself at how FAST the BBSes flew by!
    • by Osty (16825)

      best was team fortress regular on quake levels with grapple, sounds weird but was EXTREMELY fun

      No way! The real best was playing plain vanilla TF (not the MegaTF crap or other variants) on the Holy Hand Grenade server. 24/7 Canalzon, where the canalzon map author (ramirez) would frequently play with us. Team Fortress on the Canalzon map pioneered the "territories" game concept that went on to feature prominently in many other games, from Tribes to UT to Halo. Respect your roots.

      Canalzon was the only w

      • You missed my point a bit.. and I certainly agree with you that canalzon was a great map. What I was getting at was that the gameplay was highly dependent on the community whether it be the map builder or the way the servers were run. That type of free-form gameplay is what allows different people to come together to play a single game.
  • I was verry impressed with the beta. I've played several recent betas (ET:QW for example) that were nowhere near as polished. I'd surprised if they changed anything as far as optimization. Small gameplay tweeks are easy enough through steam. What really got me though is the feel of the artwork. I have always enjoyed the Spy Vs. Spy type animation and this is right along those lines. I don't know why, but it reminds me of 50's boozerunners and their tommyguns. The gameplay is really fun as well as balanced.
  • ...a seasoned pyro; at least in TFC? I never found much reward in using this class, and it doesn't seem to have improved from what I've seen and heard.
    • I myself am not, but a freind of mine is. I've never been that effective with them, but No_legs will clear checkpoints single-handedly. A Pyro/Medic combo can really cook some people, especially if they are camping a checkpoint or corner. They can do massive damage, and the burning effect doesn't go away when your not directly in the flame. Taking sustained damage from the burning is pretty rough, and will knock a heavy down pretty quick if there is no medic to put you out.
      • I like playing Pyro in capture maps especially when I'm defending. They can be very effective close range but really suffer in large areas.

        Although... I played in a server today where half the server were pyro's (about half and half on each team). It was carnage and a lot of fun :)
    • by djarum72 (122163)
      I play pyro all the time, it's the best anti-spy class.

      GTG, my sentries are getting sapped!

    • by doojsdad (1162065)
      I've found the pyro to be especially good at guarding control points/pads. In general, they are best geared for close combat. What better way is there to defend your pad from 4 enemies at once than jumping in and setting them all on fire? When it seems all is lost I've been able to take out five people at once when 'critical hits' jumps in. The critical hit thing is also an interesting addition.
    • Oh yeah, pyro is better than ever. Especially when you hear the soldier yell out "I'm on fire!"
    • by hocrap (167178)

      Playing pyro was fun, especially when the map, like Fort, was crowded. Pyro was a class I would use when I would be tired of playing the others fun support classes like engineer and medic. I just loved to annoy these soldiers or snipers with rocket fire playing pick-a-boo. Great memories, almost ten years since TF on Quake, not getting any younger.
    • Engineer and Pyro are my two favorite classes, before and now. I'm very happy with how well the work together, both defensively and offensivly. The recent patch improved the pyro's point blank damage, making them a bit more effective on prolonged offensive drives where an engie team can get a turret and dispenser setup. Engineer and Pyro go together like Medics and Heavies, or Soldiers and Demos.

      On defense, the Pyro is the perfect match with Engineers. If a spy is stupid enough to sap something while a p
    • I never really liked TFC, but in the original TF engineer and pyro were the two most fun classes to play. Engineers would start defending, build a decent level sentry gun, and do a little lone attacking. A well-placed EMP grenade could cause a lot of damage to heavier classes. I plated a lot on CTF8, which had a pair of tunnels leading to the top of bases that you could drop grenades down (and then jump down quickly, because each base contained a button that killed anyone in the tunnel). Having an engin
    • I only played that class for a few minutes, but I didn't much care for it. It's funny that it has the least personality, just a guy in a mask. The Pyro would work if they made his fire do more to you than just suck health. It does obstruct visibility a little, but it should say, prevent your character from firing his weapon properly, maybe cause him to run around screaming that he's on fire. Then the Pyro could clear out a room. He'd be a force to be reckoned with. Alas, he's just a throwaway character now.
      • by Hettch (692387)
        Then the Pyro could clear out a room.

        This is the only thing i remember about the pyro from old TF. Except repace "room" with "server." Ha, in the quake days we all said he shot the "lag gun" since it just placed candle/flame entities around the map and after a couple minutes of shooting would cause everyone to lag out. When it was an annoying server, it was fun to run around with him for a while before back to the usual of sniping on 2fort.
  • I never played the original, but I became very interested after I started working on a Source mod of my own. I've been a big fan of class-based FPS team play since Tribes and an even bigger fan of fun/silliness since discovering (the tasteless) Postal 2 (not that it need be tasteless, but humor is good...especially with FPS where you can get WAY too serious). The thing I like about class play is if it's done right you actually end up in a situation where team members depend on other team member filling vari
  • It's amazing. Almost worth the crazy long wait. Now I just need DNF and my gaming life is complete...
  • by Some_Llama (763766) on Monday October 01, 2007 @06:39PM (#20817065) Homepage Journal
    or is it too soon?

    Nerf scout shotgun or give them the sniper machine gun instead.. 2 shots from a scout's gun should kill a 175hp demo or 200 hp soldier.. i've seen 3-4 scouts rush a CP and kill everyone and cap the round.

    demo nades are a little under powered when laying ont he ground and exploding (direct hits are right, and stickys are fine).

    uber could last a little longer.

    overall tho you can tell a lot of balance was worked on prior to beta...

    • that should have read "2 shots from a scout's gun SHOULDN'T kill a 175hp demo or 200 hp soldier."
    • by cthellis (733202)
      2 shots from a scout's gun should kill a 175hp demo or 200 hp soldier..

      Come now, "two shots can kill a demo or soldier" if you're getting a point-blank ambush on them; preferably shooting them up the backside of their head. It can't do nearly that damage if they're at any real engagement distance or in the middle of doing speedy maneuvers to try to not also get killed in one shot. (And the soldier's splash damage at that range can usually take them out.) This is about the only thing that turns scouts
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Some_Llama (763766)
        "It can't do nearly that damage if they're at any real engagement distance or in the middle of doing speedy maneuvers to try to not also get killed in one shot. (And the soldier's splash damage at that range can usually take them out.)"

        With the scout's double jump mid air switch direction maneuver there isn't any splash.. the scout is also so fast they can run right past the slow missle from a rocket.. the demo doesn't even have a chance since you have to hit them dead on with a nade, gl with that... the o
        • by cthellis (733202)
          With the scout's double jump mid air switch direction maneuver there isn't any splash.. the scout is also so fast they can run right past the slow missle from a rocket.. the demo doesn't even have a chance since you have to hit them dead on with a nade, gl with that... the only choice for a soldier is aiming at his own feet thus taking a lot of splash himself, or stickies for a demo.

          Soldier can splash the floor, wall, ceiling... Just a bit of predictive trajectory and you'll usually take the scout out i
          • "and if you mean just give them a 10-20 damage buff, you're not talking much anyway, so it would hardly matter."

            It would make a difference tho.. last night i shot 3 nades and they landed at the feet of a sniper.. he just stood there and killed me and lived through their explosions.. if it was buffed by 10-20 he would have died as well.. so he would have to make a choice.. dodge the nades or take the shot and trade his life for mine.

            They already nerfed the demo. what nades are now is an inaccurate rocket lau
    • Bring bank bouncing grenades, what's the point of defending with them if you can't kill by lobbing them around corners? Scouts all giving x2 to cap is a little overpowered especially against the last capture point. How about a +2 limit for any one capture point, so more than 2 scouts doesn't cap any faster.
    • Some people can't come up with a defense to a specific tactic, so they shoot nerf.

      Here's a clue, use your fucking head. There is a pretty simple defense against what you describe, but apparently you are so attached to a method of play or a type of defense you can't adapt, so you die.
  • While I like some of the new additions, porting Warpath, Avanti and Crossover would do wonders for this game. It seems like some lousy TFC/TF maps got ported just for tradition (i.e. well and 2fort). Maybe they were fun in 1997, but they don't fit well in the current strategic game mechanic.

    Warpath especially needs to be in this game ASAP.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by GearType2 (614552)
      the commentary explains the map situation pretty clearly. But the basic idea was this: Valve is great and awesome and all, so they focused on a core group of maps that everyone in their team wanted for TF2 that they could make *great*. Being very open to modding, the community would build the mapset up. If you compare TF2's maplist to TFC's you'll find TF2's maps are more in rotation than any of the basic maps in TFC(except for 2forts). Hell, granary, and well are some of my new favorites. Also, don't hit
  • Don't get me wrong, I am loving TF2. I think it's a hell of a lot of fun. I could suggest a few tweaks, but I'm sure everyone playing it could. I trust Valve to pay attention to beta feedback and gradually tweak things over time.

    But Team Fortress 2 this is not. It's Team Fortress 1.3. Lets' face it, what has really changed? The main thing is that the graphics are a lot better, and that's a very good thing. But as far as I can tell, all the changes are incremental. Unless I'm forgetting something, th
    • by cthellis (733202)
      But Team Fortress 2 this is not. It's Team Fortress 1.3.

      But the thing is... this is actually good. What other game has delivered the type of gameplay of Team Fortress SINCE TFC? I have never found a replacement game that fit the mold. Certainly I loved seeing games develop out of that kind of class-based, teamwork gameplay--from Tribes to 2142--but there hasn't been another game that's delivered Team Fortress.

      Frankly, polishing things up and removing the exploits was all they NEEDED to do. But in
    • ===1st point===
      Your supposed new ideas of a gravity gun or portal gun in the game... are idiotic. Yes these are fun and cool guns. Yes they would be interesting in the game. Would you have a cohesive team experience with lots of push and pull and multiple solutions to an offense / defense problem? No.

      ===2nd point===
      If the grav gun or portal gun were in multiplayer. They would be one huge gimmick. After a while they would be really old after everyone got accustumed to looking at the really cool yet
  • The most amazing part of TF2 is not in the new art, graphics, map design, and certainly not the class based system, or UI... the real achievement is in how they chose to balance each class. Balancing like the different speeds of characters, the speeds of each weapon projectile, reload times, clip size, max ammo, critical hits (breaks up the monotonous turtling that is inevitable from good defense teams), uber charge. I mean every weapon is not new (see Q1 TF mod, weapons factory, TF mod for every freaking

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