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TFPortal Fanstuff Special - Part 6: Retrospective
Written by Unknown on 18.12.2010 Time 18:48

TFPortal Fanstuff Special - Part 6: TF2 Retrospective

 

Welcome to Part 6 of the Fanstuff Special. Today's topic is a TF2 Retrospective. If you've missed one of the previous parts, just click at one of the links below. The next part will be released in two weeks (January 2nd, 2011).

Part 1 - Websites

Part 2 - Webcomics

Part 3 - Fanart

Part 4 - Mods

Part 5 - Do It Yourself

Part 6 - Retrospective

Part 7 - A Comment on 3 Years Team Fortress 2

 

Team Fortress 2 Retrospective

 

Three years... the game is already three years old... and what great three years they were! So much happened in this short time. We already tried to cover everything in our TFPortal Fanstuff Special, but that won't do the game justice. So let's give it another try with this Team Fortress 2 Retrospective. All big events in the game's lifespan are covered here. If you bought the game on a later date and missed some of the events, now it's your chance to catch up with the veterans. If you're a veteran, read the article anyway and enjoy the memories, both good and bad.

Before we start the restrospective, please note that there is one last part left. Part 7 of the TFPortal Fanstuff Special will be released on January 2nd 2011. Be sure to visit the website in the new year, because it'll be a blast!

 

 

2006

 

June

 

 

July

 

  • July 19th: The first-ever trailer for Team Fortress 2 has been released, introducing the community to all nine classes.

 

August

 

  • August 24th: Team Fortress Classic celebrated its 10th anniversary. The same day, Valve released a second trailer for Team Fortress 2.
  • August 24th to 27th: A life-demo of Team Fortress 2 was shown at the Games Convention in Leipzig (press-only event).

 

 

2007

 

May

 

 

August

 

  • August 22th: Release of Meet the Soldier.
  • August 23rd to 26th: Team Fortress 2 is available for play at Games Convention (again).

 

September

 

  • September 11th: Release of Meet the Engineer.
  • September 13th: Release of Fortress Forever, a Source mod inspired by Team Fortress Classic.
  • September 17th: Release of the Team Fortress 2 Beta for everyone who pre-ordered The Orange Box. The same day, the European Sports League (ESL) opens their TF2 section.
  • September 22th: Release of cp_lazytown, the first custom map for Team Fortress 2. (Source)

 

October

 

  • October 8th: Release of Ignus Solus, made by LitFuseFilms, on YouTube. It's the first Machinima made with Team Fortress 2.
  • October 9th: Release of The Orange Box in Japan. The same day, Valve released Meet the Demoman.
  • October 10th: Release of The Orange Box in the US (Retail) as well as Team Fortress 2 standalone on Steam.
  • October 18th: Release of The Orange Box in Europe.
  • October 25th: Release of The Orange Box in Australia.

 

December

 

 

 

2008

 

January

 

 

February

 

 

March

 

 

April

 

  • April 11th: Release of A Team Fortress 2 Western.
  • April 17th: Release of the first episode of 101 Uses of a Dispenser.
  • April 19th: Release of Meet the Scout.
  • April 24th: Release of the Gold Rush Update, the first mayor update for Team Fortress 2.
     
    Unlike all updates following this one, this update was not named after the class, but instead after the first new map Valve created and added to the official map pool.
    In a first for the game at the time, a class received new achievements and items centered around it. In this case, it was the Medic who received these.
    Aside from the extras for the Medic class, the update also added the Payload game mode as well as the map pl_goldrush.

 

June

 

  • June 2nd: Release of Rocking Fortress.
  • June 7th: Release of Meet the Sniper.
  • June 16th: Release of the Pyro Update.
     
    This update added new achievements and items for the Pyro. 2 new maps (cp_fastlane, ctf_turbine) were added to the game. These two maps were not made by Valve, but instead by community members. Fastlane and Turbine are the first two community maps to be added to the official map pool.

 

August

 

  • August 5th: Release of Temp Fortress (Wegame / YouTube)
  • August 7th: Release of Gang Garrison 2.
  • August 19th: Release of the Heavy Update.
     
    This update added new achievements and items for the Heavy. The Arena game mode as well as 7 new maps (cp_steel, pl_badwater, arena_lumberyard, arena_ravine, arena_well, arena_granary, arena_badlands) were added to the game. Steel is the third community map to be added to the official map pool.
     
    The same day, Valve releases Meet the Sandvich.

 

October

 

  • October 8th: Release of the first episode of Dynamic Action Team.

 

November

 

 

 

2009

 

February

 

  • February 22th: Release of the Scout Update.
     
    This update added new achievements and items for the Scout. 3 new maps (arena_watchtower, cp_junction, cp_egypt) were added to the game. Watchtower, Junction and Egypt are the forth, fifth and sixth community map to be added to the official map pool.
     
    Valve allowed the community to vote which weapon should be unlucked first. The Force-A-Nature won the vote, followed by the Sandman (2nd) and Bonk! Atomic Punch (3rd).

 

March

 

 

May

 

  • May 11th: Release of Team Fortress 2 - Super Smash Bros. 64 Intro.
  • May 17th: Meet the Spy video is leaked.
  • May 19th: "Official" release of Meet the Spy.
  • May 21th: Release of the Sniper vs. Spy Update.
     
    This update centered around the Sniper alone at first, but on day 4 it was revealed that the Spy would receive an update as well. This trend of two classes receiving an update at the same time was continued in the War! Update.
     
    The Payload Race game mode as well as new maps (plr_pipeline, arena_sawmill, arena_nucleus, pl_hoodoo) were added to the game. Hoodoo is the seventh commnity map to be added to the official map pool. Both the Sniper and the Spy received new items and achievements as well.
     
    The item drop system was added to the game with that update as well. The game would periodically give random items to the player. While only non-standard weapons were dropped at first, hats and other items were added to the drop rooster in later updates.
     
    The update caused some controversity with the item drop system at first. Originally, the new items for both the Spy and the Sniper were only available as a drop. Due to some heavy resistance from the community, however, this was later changed and the old achievement aquisition method was added as well.
     
    Last but not least, this update introduced hats to the game, adding nine hats to the game which could be found via the item drop system.

 

June

 

 

August

 

  • August 1st: The second Team Fortress 2 beta is revealed.
     
    This was the second closed beta for the game on which teams from the European and North American TF2 competetive scene participated. The goal of the beta was to test new items suitable for competetive play, among others.
     
    One day later, a thread on the official Steam forums was created, listing all known items leaked from the beta. All items tested in the beta were eventually revealed, and as of today, all but one were implemented into the game in one way or another.

 

 

  • August 13th: Release of the Classless Update.
     
    As the name implies, this update was not centered around a class but instead added many new in-game features as well as improved a few points benefitial to all classes. The King Of The Hill game mode as well as 6 new maps (arena_offblast, koth_viaduct, koth_nucleus, koth_sawmill, ctf_sawmill, cp_yukon) were added to the game. Offblast and Yukon were the eighth and ninth community map to be added to the official map pool. This update also added eightheen new hats to the game.

 

September

 

  • September 2nd: The Halocaust happened.
     
    Players were cheating in order to obtain in-game items. They would use a thrid-party program to idle on servers. Since items are dropped while playing, but not everyone wanted to play at the time, they used the program to idle and received the items even if they didn't actively play the game.
     
    Valve then took action and removed all items aquired throught the use of the idle program. In addition to that, Valve gave a special hat, the Cheater's Lament, to every player who didn't use the program.
     
    The Cheater's Lament was eventually given to everyone once again (including those players who used the program) with the Mann-conomy Update.

 

  • September 13rd: Release of Babyman

 

October

 

  • October 3rd: Release of Top FPS

 

  • October 29th: Release of the Hallowe'en Special.
     
    This was the first update to feature Halloween-themed content. Two new maps (koth_harvest, koth_harvest_event) were added to the game. Harvest was the tenth community map to be added to the official map pool.
     
    While koth_harvest represents the normal version of the map, koth_harvest_event is a Halloween-themes version of it. The event version featured pumpkin bombs and a ghost which could paralyze player for a few seconds.
     
    Aside from the two maps, five achievements (so-called "Scarechievements") were added to the game. Similar to the class achievements and their milestones which unlock certain items, the Scarechievements allowed players to obtain two hats: The Ghastly Gibus and the Mildly Disturbing Halloween Mask.

 

December

 

  • December 17th: Release of the WAR! Update.
     
    This update is the second one to include both achievements and new items for two classes - in this case, for the Soldier and the Demoman. The update added 2 new maps as well (cp_gorge, ctf_doublecross).
     
    In a similar fasion to the vote from the Scout Update, the community was getting involved into the choice of items for each class. During the few days prior to the update's release, all dead counts of both Soldier and Demoman players would be recorded by Valve. Depending on which side suffered less casualties (and therefore, won by defeating more enemies), a special item, the Gunboats, would be rewarded to one side or another. The item would eventually become available for the Soldier class.
     
    Another commnity-involving event was the propaganda contest: Players could create their own propaganda posters for the Soldier vs Demoman conflict and submit their creations to Valve. The best 3 entries were posted on the official blog.
     
    Last but not least, the crafting system was added to the game, allowing players to craft items and hats by using the items in their possesion as crafting materials.

 

 

2010

 

January

 

  • January 13th: Valve introduced the contribution system. Players were now able to submit self-created items and avatars. Some of those should eventually be added to the game via updates.

 

February

 

 

March

 

  • March 13th: 9 hats and 4 weapons made by the community were added to the game.

 

April

 

  • April 24th: Release of the 119th Update.
     
    The importance of this update was hinted at on the newspaper added to the main menu of the game during the WAR! Update. The update page reflects the progress of the game and lists the entire changelog for all 199 updates so far and included a teaser for the Engineer Update.

 

May

 

  • May 18th: The Fancy vs. Nasty Update, a fan-made update with custom-made hat models, is mentioned in the official blog. Most of these items would be added to the game in the Australian Christmas Update.

 

  • May 20th: 11 hats and 2 weapons made by the community are added to the game.

 

June

 

  • June 10th: Release of the Mac Update.
     
    Following Valve's release of a Macintosh-compatible version of Steam and some of their games such as Half-Life 2, Portal and Left 4 Dead, Team Fortress 2 is released for OS X. All Mac players who bought the game or player the game from June 10th to August 16th received a special promotional item: Earbuds.
     
    Aside from the compatibility of the game with OS X, the update also included a Training mode and Offline Practice mode to help new players get familiar with the game. The main menu of the game has been changed as well.

 

 

July

 

  • July 8th: Release of the Engineer Update. It's the last mayor update centered around an in-game class.
     
    This update added new achievements and items for the Engineer. 4 new maps (pl_thundermountain,      plr_hightower, pl_upward, cp_coldfront) were added to the game. Coldfront is the eleventh community map to be added to the official map pool.
     
    A few days prior to the release of the update, players could obtain a special item; the Golden Wrench. This item could only be obtained throught crafting. In an intervall of roughly an hour, the system would pick up a player who is currently crafting something and give him/her a Golden Wrench instead of a normal item. Only a total of 100 golden wrenches were available and eventually given to 100 players.
     
    A few players exloited the system and aquired a golden wrench by knowing the exact time for a wrench to appear and using scripts to craft in rapid succession. 4 golden wrenches were eventually taken away and given to other players.

 

  • July 16th: Valve announced the Art Pass Concest in a blog post. Players could design a map whose geometry and game mode were pre-determined by Valve. The winner of the contest would be included in a future update.
     
    Submissions were open until September 25th and the winners were announced on October 26th in a blog post. The two winning maps were added to the game with the Scream Fortress Update.

 

August

 

  • August 24th: Valve announed the Hat Describing Contest in a blog post. Players could write descriptions for all hats included in the game. The contest lasted for three days and the winner's descriptions were added to the game on August 27th.
  • August 31th: In an effort to raise money for charity, 14 players were destroying their Golden Wrenches that day. They raised over 31,000$ for Child's Play.

 

September

 

  • September 2nd: Valve announces the Highlander Mix-Match in a blog post.
  • September 4th: Inspired by the actions of the 14 players, Daniel Sato is organized the PAX Golden Charity. Jerry Holkins from Penny Arcade destroyed his Golden Wrench at PAX, 530$ were raised in total.
  • September 30th: Release of the Mann-conomy Update.
     
    This update introduced the trading system and the in-game item store "Mann. Co Store" to the community. In addition to that, 5 sets of items were added to the game. Each set consists of an alternate weapon for each of the three weapon slots and a hat (with the exception of the Spy, who has only two weapon slots and therefore only received two new weapons). There exist a set for the Sniper, Soldier, Pyro, Scout and Spy class.
     
    Aside from these 5 item sets, 15 new hats and 4 new weapons were added to the game. 65 new items were added to the game in total with this update.
     
    All items aquired prior to this update have been turned into "Vintage" items. According to Valve, this was done to give players a visual indication for their hard work. Since most hats and weapons can be purchased from the Mann. Co Store, the Vintage label indicates that these items were aquired through other, sometimes harder methods like achievements and crafting.

 

October

 

  • October 27th: Release of the Scream Fortress Update.
     
    This was the second update to feature Halloween-themed content. Two new maps (cp_mountainlab,      cp_manor_event) were added to the game. Mountain Lab and Mann Manor are the twelfth and thirteenth community map to be added to the official map pool.
     
    Just like koth_harvest_event from October 2009, cp_manor_event features some special items and a NPC limited to Halloween. The Pumpkin bombs make a return from the last Halloween event. New additions were the Horseless Headless Horsemann and the Haunted Halloween Gifts. The Horsemann would spawn periodically on the map and kill all players regardless of team affection, while the gifts contained one of the 9 class-based halloween masks. If a player colelcts one mask for each class, he/she could craft them together in order to obtain the Saxton Hale Mask.
     
    The update added 4 new achievements called "Ghostchievements". Some of the Scarechievements from the Halloween 2010 event were unlockable as well, if someone missed them last time around.

 

November

 

 

  • November 24th: The Highlander Mix-Match happens. Players from the development team, competetive scene and public players are participating in a match with Highlander class rules.
     
    The match was announced two month earlier and was scheduled for September 2nd. Due to a DDOS attack, however, the match was postponed to a later date.

 

December

 

  • December 2nd: Release of the third Team Fortress 2 Beta. This was the first beta to be available for everyone who owned the main game.

 

  • December 17th: Release of the Australian Christmas Update.
     
    The Medieval game mode as well as the mode's first map (cp_degrootkeep) were added to the game. As far as items are concerned, 21 new hats and 13 new weapons were added to the game.
     
    The update introduced the map stamp to the community. Players can buy a stamp for a community map in the Mann Co. Store. All stamp proceeds (minus any taxes) will be given to the mapfmakers of the corresponding map.

 

 

2012

 

December

 

  • December 12th: Release of Meet the Pyro. The reveal of the Pyro's face causes planet Earth to explode. The same day, Saxton Hale is killed in an epic battle with the Vagineer.

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