Team Fortress 2 Smissmas Update Features New Weapons and Beta Game Mode

Posted by Ben Huber on Dec 26, 2014 in Videogames

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Every year, Valve puts out a holiday update for Team Fortress 2, usually with a bunch of goodies and sometimes new gameplay additions. This year, they’re keeping in that trend and releasing three new weapons (two for Demoman and one multi-class item for Heavy, Solider, Pyro, and Engie), along with something really neat: a beta game mode. This new mode is called Mannpower, a CTF variant that features power-ups and grappling hooks. Yes, you read that right: every player has a grappling hook that will be able to help them traverse the map. It’s suitably silly and fun, and you can play it right away in game without any beta-participation shenanigans. Check out the full update details here. Read more…

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Team Fortress 2’s 6th Annual Halloween Update Goes Live

Posted by Ben Huber on Oct 31, 2014 in Videogames

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Wow, it’s been six years running now that Team Fortress 2 has done a Halloween special update! Not too bad, Valve. The latest update features plenty of spooky spells, a Halloween-themed map, new hats (of course), and best of all: bumper cars! Playing on the new Halloween map features a section where you can bump and bash into everyone else in a rush to collect points and win. As usual, there’s also a short comic as well, featuring the incompetent wizard of the TF2 universe, Merasmus. Goofiness and spookiness awaits! Check out the update page here. Read more…

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Last Chance To Vote For The Saxxy Awards!

Posted by Ben Huber on Sep 29, 2014 in Animation, Videogames

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The Fourth Annual Saxxy Awards voting period is almost over, so if you haven’t had a chance yet, you should get over there and vote! The Saxxys is Valve’s annual video competition in which fans use the Source Filmmaker software to create CGI videos using game assets from Team Fortress 2, Portal 2, and Left 4 Dead. Most of the submitted films are TF2 -themed, but there’s really no limit to what you can put in your film, as long as it’s either using game assets or your own original work. There’s multiple categories and several awards to give out. I’ve put a few of the best I’ve seen below the jump. And then get voting here! Read more…

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Watch Valve’s Latest Team Fortress 2 Short: ‘Expiration Date’

Posted by Bob Muir on Jun 19, 2014 in Animation, Videogames

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Team Fortress 2 has been out forever, at least in internet time. But Valve is still supporting it with new updates, even after the game became free-to-play a few years back. Their latest, the Love & War update, promises several additions, such as new taunts. But more importantly, Valve released another short starring the various playable classes, made in Source Filmmaker. “Expiration Date” has the red team confronting their imminent death only three days later, as well as Scout pursuing his crush with the help of Spy. It’s a whopping 15 minutes long, making it the longest TF2 short Valve has ever done. I just enjoy watching the characters bounce off each other, so keep making them Valve! Read more…

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What If Smash Bros. Featured Valve’s Characters?

Posted by Ben Huber on Jun 2, 2014 in Fandom, Videogames

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Smash Bros. is a great game because Nintendo has such a huge catalog of iconic characters to pull from, but not many other companies could pull off a similar feat. YouTube user crazyhalo definitely thinks Valve could do it, as they have created a video that remakes the intro film from Super Smash Bros. Melee with all of Valve’s characters. Gordon Freeman, the Heavy, Dog, every Dota character, Chell, and more are featured in this. If you’ve played Melee, this video will probably bring up a lot of memories, as it’s a pitch-perfect reproduction. Check out the video below! Read more…

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This Guy Built A Life-Size TF2 Minigun

Posted by Ben Huber on May 4, 2014 in Fandom

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Fans continue to impress us in all sorts of ways. YouTube user Cory Alexander put together a life-size prop of the Heavy’s minigun from Team Fortress 2. Not only is it the spitting image of the in-game gun, it also features sound effects, motors to make the barrel spin, and lights to simulate the bullets. He built it from spare parts as well as several 3D-printed parts for the more unique bits. It’ll also be used as part of a Heavy cosplay set to debut at Phoenix Comicon 2014. Impressive! Watch the full video showing it off below. Read more…

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Latest Team Fortress 2 Comic Features Lots of Bears

Posted by Ben Huber on Apr 4, 2014 in Comic Books, Videogames

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Do you like bears? Do you like Russian bears? Do you like washed-up mercenaries fighting bears? And most importantly, do you like hats? If you said yes to any of those, you should probably check out the third installment of the Team Fortress 2 web comic. This bi-monthly comic… er, tri-monthly… actually, it’s been almost four months since the last one. Let’s just Valve Time applies to their comics too. Still, they’re definitely worth the wait, and add a lot of hilarious backstory to the Team Fortress universe. Check out parts 1 and 2 here, then jump into the latest one. Lastly, Valve also announced they’re making a moon base level for TF2. Just thought you should know. Because that’s awesome. Read more…

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Steam Winter Sales Skate In

Posted by Ben Huber on Dec 21, 2013 in Videogames

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It’s the time of the year, when everyone gathers around the warmth of the computer screen and buys games for cheap on Steam. The holiday sale has started now and will run until January 3rd. There’s a lot of really great games on sale, so be sure to check out the full list for everything. Konami also has the PC port of Metal Gear Rising up for pre-order… and on sale! Jump on that ASAP if you’re interested. In other Steam-related news, you can get items for your favorite free-to-play games by participating in the sale. And, as part of that, Team Fortress 2 has just gotten a holiday update that adds new Smissmas-themed items and more!  Read more…

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Lil’ Guardian Pyro and Other Saxxy Award Winners

Posted by Ben Huber on Dec 2, 2013 in Videogames

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Well, Valve’s Saxxy Awards are over! All the votes have been tallied and the winner is… Lil’ Guardian Pyro! It’s an adorable short film feature a Pyro doll defending a sentry from a Spy doll. It’s really well done, but so were most of the nominees this year. Valve’s Saxxy Awards always bring out the best Source Filmmaker artists, directors, and animators out there, so be sure to browse the full site and watch them all. I really enjoyed Disruption, Crackpot, and Chinatown Getaway as well as the overall winner. Check it out below. Read more…

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Latest Team Fortress 2 Update Adds New Weapon Effects, Maps, and More

Posted by Ben Huber on Nov 22, 2013 in Videogames

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Team Fortress 2, despite releasing just over six years ago, is still going strong. A committed player base and continuous updates from Valve adding new items, weapons, and maps have made it the (in my opinion) best free-to-play shooter on the market. Oh, and yes, hats. The latest update, the Two Cities Update, for TF2 arrives today and will add new maps to the popular co-op defense mode, Mann Vs. Machine, along with new cosmetic items that allow you to deck out your items with colorful effects. With these Killstreak Kits, your weapon can glow and you can show off how good you are and killing “tiny baby men.” At least check out the site for more of Valve’s trademark humor and promotional stuff for the update which is absolutely hilarious. They released a new animated short, which is always cool! Read more…

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Team Fortress 2 Fifth Annual Halloween Event Begins: Helltower

Posted by Ben Huber on Nov 1, 2013 in Videogames

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Every year during Halloween, something special happens… something truly spooky! No, it’s not costumes and trick-or-treaters, it’s Team Fortress 2’s annual Scream Fortress event! Every year a map is transformed into a dark, spooky underworld where presents drop and candy reigns. This year they’ve adapted the Hightower map to become… Helltower. Also added are a new exclusive feature to this map: magic spells. Cast them at the opposite team to spook them out! Lastly, they added over 100 new community-made items, some of them even by people I know! All of those folks will be getting a cut of the money from those items sold, so if you decide to buy some items to dress up your character, know that you’re supporting real people! Now get out there and spook some folks! Read more…

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Surgeon Simulator 2013 Updates With Team Fortress 2 Characters

Posted by Ben Huber on Jun 22, 2013 in Videogames

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It seems like Valve’s Team Fortress 2 characters will jump into any and every game they can. Every other week there’s a new cross-promotion or new hat in TF2, all to promote new games on Steam. I can appreciate Valve throwing their weight around for smaller games that need attention. Surgeon Simulator, on the other hand, has plenty of attention, but this is just a match made in heaven. You can now play as the Medic operating on the Heavy in a new update for the game, and struggle to fit his new heart into his chest cavity. Much crossover fanart and YouTube videos have lead to this point, and it is beautiful. Check out the trailer below. Read more…

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Source Filmmaker Meets The Venture Brothers

Posted by Bob Muir on Feb 28, 2013 in Animation, Fandom, Videogames

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It’s not May 19 yet, so that means we’re all still waiting on the fifth season of The Venture Brothers, one of the few good shows still on Adult Swim. In the meantime, fans who have waited forever (or since 2010) for a new season will have to make due with fan-made content. That’s not a problem when there’s awesome stuff like this reanimation of one of season two’s best scenes using the Source Filmmaker. Read more…

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The Turret Anthem – The Source Filmmaker Works of Zachariah Scott

Posted by Ben Huber on Jan 27, 2013 in Fandom, Videogames

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I guess the ingenuity of the internet should never be questioned. Source Filmmaker is an impressive tool, but more impressive are the works coming out of it, made by fans. The recent videos making waves are The Turret Anthem and A Smissmass Massacre, two incredibly well-done short films that feature Portal characters in the former and Team Fortress 2 characters in the latter. Zachariah Scott has filled his YouTube page with great work, but these two most recent ones really do stand above the rest. Keep up the good work! Read more…

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Team Fortress 2 15-Minute Short Film in the Works

Posted by Ben Huber on Jan 12, 2013 in Videogames

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Valve’s series of Team Fortress 2 Meet the Team videos have been some of the best video game-based short films made. Ever. So a lot of people want more of that – I know I do. But making more is a big undertaking, but it looks like Valve is up to the challenge. In a recent Nerdist podcast, Gabe Newell mentions that Valve is indeed working on a Team Fortress 2 short film, and it will be roughly 15 minutes in length. They were originally aiming for a 90-minute feature length film, but once they discovered that was hard, they scaled it down a bit. Given the quality of the previous shorts, I’m incredibly hyped for this new video. Read more…

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Valve Launches Steam Community Market Beta

Posted by Ben Huber on Dec 16, 2012 in Videogames

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Ever had a virtual gun you wanted to sell? Perhaps a virtual hat you no longer need? Well Valve is taking the first steps into establishing a legit digital market within Steam, starting with Team Fortress 2, their eternal guinea pig, and Dota 2. Currently, you’re now able to sell and buy “Tool” items for real money, and eventually Valve plans to add weapons and cosmetic items into the mix as well. While this sort of market has existed for a while, it required third-party websites or middlemen to make the transaction happen (because you better not be PayPal-ing money to random people for virtual hats by yourself – that’s scam city). Now, with a solid trading system backing it, Valve will be able to monitor and foster their virtual economy even more. It’s pretty fascinating stuff! Read more…

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Team Fortress 2 Saxxy Awards Now Live – Vote for the Winners

Posted by Ben Huber on Nov 18, 2012 in Videogames

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Team Fortress 2’s annual fan-made video contest, the Saxxy Awards, have started up for their second year. You can now vote on the best Source Filmmaker video and best replay, as well as their individual categories. Comedy, drama, and all the variety and entertainment of a real awards show, without all the pomp and fancy dresses (except for maybe that Magical Heavy Fairy video). The voting period goes until November 27th, and the winners will be announced on November 30th… aside from Best Overall. That one will be shown live on Spike TV’s Video Game Awards pre-show and aired on TV. Now that’s pretty sweet!

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Scout vs. Witch – An Impressive Fan Film

Posted by Ben Huber on Sep 9, 2012 in Fandom, Videogames

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Source Filmmaker is one of the best things Valve has released. Already, countless fan films have been made using it, some of them rivaling Valve’s own work. Nailbiter (aka Randall Glass) took SFM and combined it with Maya, the Source SDK, and a helping of Team Fortress 2 and Left 4 Dead, resulting in a fantastic short that I sure hope lands him a job. It features a Team Fortress character, the Scout, meeting up with a few zombies from Left 4 Dead – and maybe it doesn’t go quite how he hoped. Check it out after the break. Read more…

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This is The Week for Video Game Cinematics: Warcraft & TF2

Posted by Ben Huber on Aug 17, 2012 in Animation, Videogames

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Two big games got new cinematics this week to promote their updates! World of Warcraft has upcoming Mists of Pandaria expansion, and their opening video is mighty impressive – no matter how much you complain about Kung-Fu Panda. On the other end, Team Fortress 2’s Mann VS. Machine update went live recently and the new short featuring Red and Blu Team partnering against a robot menace is also quite cool. When will Blizzard and Valve just make us some straight-up CGI feature-length films? Come on! Read more…

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Team Fortress 2 ARG Leads to 5000 Pieces of Data and a Comic

Posted by Ben Huber on Aug 13, 2012 in Videogames

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Valve has been known to love their ARGs (alternate reality game), and on Saturday they launched what they called their most “fiendishly difficult” ARG yet, involving roughly 5000 pieces of data to decode and collect. You had to download strange files, equip rare items in-game, and then high-five other players while wearing said items, all wrapped in codes and riddles. Their blog says they were worried it might take a while for the community to solve it, but they pieced the puzzle together in a stunning 12 hours. The ARG unveiled a new online comic for TF2 that indicates big things in the ever-popular free-to-play game. And the comic is pretty freaking hilarious too, so check it out!

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Kinect and Source Filmmaker Make Excellent Movie-Creating Tools

Posted by Ben Huber on Jul 29, 2012 in Fandom, Videogames

Bioware cinematic designer James McVinnie was excited by the prospect of Source Filmmaker – it’s an easy-to-use tool allowing someone to make digital movies using game models. Combined with motion-tracking from two Kinects, he created Practical Problems, a short TF2 film in which two Engineers duke it out. It’s really quite cute, and shows the potential of Source Filmmaker to open up the animation world. Many of these videos are mighty impressive, and they’re only getting better!

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Meet the Pyro Lets You See the World Through the Pyro’s Eyes

Posted by Ben Huber on Jun 29, 2012 in Videogames

Valve’s final Meet the Team animated short has finally been released, nearly five years after the game first came out. Given the omnipresence of “Valve Time” (the frequently mentioned joke that Valve operates on a different clock than the rest of the world) it should be no surprise it took this long. Yet, this video is certainly worth it. The latest update also came out, delivering Pyro-vision goggles, a Robot Chicken hat, and a new game mode in which you launch a monkey named Poopy Joe into space. Don’t tell me that doesn’t sound like a blast (and it’s free-to-play). Read more…

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Adult Swim and Valve Teaming Up For Something TF2-Related

Posted by Ben Huber on Jun 24, 2012 in Television, Videogames

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A newsletter signup showed up on the Adult Swim website yesterday, emblazoned with images of the Team Fortress 2 cast and a warning: next week there will be new details of an Adult Swim and Valve team-up. This, of course, set the internet ablaze wondering what this could possibly be. This past week Valve has been running a small ARG within TF2, dropping hints that their final animated short, Meet the Pyro, could be coming out next week. Could Adult Swim air it on TV? Or perhaps they’ll show the annual TF2 Community video awards show, the Saxxy Awards? We’ll find out soon!

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My Favorite Team Fortress Character: The Engineer

Posted by John Martone on May 26, 2009 in Videogames

Team Fortress Sentry Operating Manual

Every person is a player, and every player has their game. Valve’s Team Fortress 2, on top of being just delightfully hilarious and fun to look at, achieves an environment that sums up nine different “Players.” Some people are spies, some people are snipers, I however, am an Engineer. Read more…

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