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So, we made a post already about the really cool new site by Drunken F00l, the TF2 Backpack Examiner.

I’ve gotten 1 hat since the idler hats were taken away (yes, I was a dirty idler). I also have the solider medal and all the weapons.

Check out my backpack.

Post yours in reply to this thread and let us see what you have!

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steam_powered

Steam has announced that it has a new genre on its platform, Family Gaming! This is great news especially since they will be offering games from this category at up to 50% off. Steam has partnered up with some new companies to bring you these great times. Here’s the official release from Steam:

With a slew of new games from several partners, today Steam is announcing the launch of the Family Gaming genre. Save up to and over 50% on select titles! Including six Nancy Drew games from new Steam partner Her Interactive and six new collections from Sandlot Games.

Your kids will thank you. No kids? No problem. There are some seriously fun
games you won’t be afraid to admit that you love. (Super Granny anyone?)

Check out the fancy Steam Family Games Sale page.

Make sure to check out what family games they have available.

ValvEA

After posting the video yesterday we realized that everything they’ve showed at E3 is nothing more than what the original has. A lot of people bought the first game and got bored of it after about a week. With the inability to choose what server to play on, the redundancy of maps, and not having any more competition than a computer people were bored.

Eventually Valve did fix a lot of this but by then it was too late. While there were, and are, dedicated fans of L4D it was a big decline in the community. The dedicated fans now want Valve to keep their promise of updating L4D once L4D 2 comes out.

With EA backing the project for L4D 2, the L4D team doesn’t have much say in what’s going to happen with the sequel. Typical of publishing companies like EA, they come in and take something good and want to make it into more of a money making machine. Do these publishers even care about video games? Time will only tell.

Video gamers as a whole are some of the most unforgiving people. We hold ourselves to such a high standard when playing games that it’s no surprise we would hold the makers of those games to an even higher standard. I can’t say I’m surprised by the fact that there is now a L4D 2 boycott group of around 16,000 members. These are gamers who feel that Valve is doing a great injustice by releasing a sequel to a game that wasn’t brought up to its full potential.

They recognize that L4D is a good game and that Valve needs to make more games to make money. They just don’t believe that they should make a sequel to a game that wasn’t given Valves full attention. Valve does state that they will continue to update L4D but that L4D 2 was too big to simply make it an update to the original. L4D 2 has five new campaigns, new melee weapons, new infected, four new survivors, a new environment, new AI director and an unannounced game mode.

It sounds like a whole lot of stuff will be coming with this new game but how much will Valve be able to deliver? As the old saying goes “Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.” Basically Valve spent millions on advertising for L4D only to have it not deliver what it promised. You can find a very interesting article on Valve’s False Promises.

Valve has a lot of people in an uproar on the Steam forums about the new L4D 2 game release. Time will only tell if the game will fly or flop. Nothing can be truly said until the game is officially released and more details can be put together on how the game functions. What can be said is that if Valve screws up L4D 2 and promises things they can’t deliver, they just might find themselves without fans. The sad part is that no matter what happens to L4D 2, the original is going to suffer with or without new updates for it.

steam_poweredWe love the Steam platform and the discounts they offer on games even more. The fact that you can digitally buy a game through their platform and instantly start playing is one of the most amazing things. Even though having a hard copy of the game is good, instant download for some is just the only way.

For quite some time now Steam has been doing weekend deals on games. Making games 40% off or 50% off from Friday to Sunday only. They do other game discount deals that expire later in the month but not as many. Finding these deals was not as easy for the average person as it should be. Steam has decided that they would make all discount games available on their home page as well as through an RSS feed.

The official statement from Steam:

Steam Adds Weekly Top Sellers List and Current Specials List

June 4, 2009, 3:45 pm – Valve – General Announcement

“Steam now offers two new information sources for gamers. A weekly top-ten list of game sales is now available each week, published via an RSS feed. The list is updated each Sunday morning and reports the previous week’s top performers on the platform. In addition, the Steam web site now also lists all active discounts, right on the home page, so bargain shoppers no longer have to hunt through the Steam store to find out which games are on special. See the current specials list in the tabbed area on http://steampowered.com, and subscribe to the Weekly Top Sellers list at http://store.steampowered.com/feeds/weeklytopsellers.xml.”

L4D2

Valve made an official release today that they will be releasing a sequel to the popular L4D co-op zombie shooter. As of now they’re simply calling it L4D2 and who would have imagined anything else? The game developers state that many of the games features will be better than the original game. They also intend on marketing it more than they did the first one which took a 10+ million dollar campaign to do.

Gabe Newell of Valve states that the AI director is what set the stage for the games success. While I agree a little bit with that I’m going to have to say no. I believe a large part of the games success was the large number of zombie fans across the world. Half-Life 2 was amazing with its undead and half dismembered monsters. This game gave lots of people a real sense of what it would be like to take on zombies. When introduced to the idea of a co-op zombie frag fest, blood bath game people were willing to jump on the idea.

L4D2 Nov 17

Here’s what Gabe has to say about the upcoming L4D2:

“A large part of how Left 4 Dead became 2008’s top-selling new IP on Xbox 360 and the PC was the custom-tailored gameplay made possible by the AI Director,” said Gabe Newell, president and co-founder of Valve. “With the knowledge gained from creating the original, new technology, and a passionate team, L4D2 will set a new benchmark for cooperative action games.”

We’ve all sat around and wondered, “What would I do if millions of zombies invaded the earth?” The idea sounds great and what they promised really looked good but it fell quite short of its full potential when it actually released. It took a few months before Valve got around to adding enough content to keep people wanting to come back for more. You can only play the same map with a group of people so many times. Hopefully L4D2 won’t fall into the same trap that its predecessor did.

Valve goes on to explain that L4D2 will have more content than the original. I really hope that’s true since the amount released with the first one wasn’t all that great. They even screwed up adding versus mode and tried to fix it a few weeks later only to mess that up as well. They do promise that all of the same stuff they’ve done to the first game will be in the second game. So we’ll pay another $60 to play a game with a few extra skins and maps, but here’s the way Valve puts it:

“Featuring new Survivors, boss zombies, weapons, and items, Left 4 Dead 2 offers a much larger game than the original with more co-operative campaigns, more Versus campaigns, and maps for Survival mode available at launch.”

Don’t get me wrong, I loved L4D. The game was simply amazing and no one wanted to get it more than me. I think they promised a lot of things they didn’t deliver and I think the things they did deliver on were less than adequate. Maybe L4D2 will be the game we’re all looking for in a co-op zombie smash and brawl.

Here’s the trailer of L4D 2, you’ll get to see a little bit of what they’re going to be releasing as well as you’ll see the new survivors.

the huntsman bow

A lot of players seem to be having a hard time figuring out how The Huntsman works. The last patch fixed it so that your flaming arrows will show up as just that when you get a kill with them. Before players would see a flamethrower icon and it was throwing them off.

Make sure to have a Pyro light your arrow or you can shoot someone that’s already on fire and kill them. Either one of these ways will give you the flaming arrow kill. Another tip to using The Huntsman is to make sure you don’t keep the arrow strung for too long.

You have about three seconds after you reach maximum power to let loose your arrow or you will lose the accuracy of the shot. This is why a lot of players are having trouble aiming or having arrows that seem to fly off into the distance. If you’ve had it strung too long and want to pull the arrow back in you can right click to release the tension.

052509_1941_TeamFortres1.jpgIn the last week many players have been throwing a fit over the new TF2 update. Some like it some don’t but most are very confused. Valve has released a small fix for the update on May 22, 2009. This only fixed bugs in the system that was immediately causing players to have issues.

There is talk of a new update coming today (Memorial Day) but I wouldn’t hold my breath for it. If there is a new update coming today to fix bugs it won’t be very large or have much of an impact on the last update.

The big debate here is if the old system or the new system works better. Some people were completely against the old system and some people are against the new one. Each system has its flaws but both give everyone the chance to get their weapons.

I think Valve could have done a much better job in preparing people for the chance in gaining weapons. A lot of people have figured it out but a lot of people that don’t visit forums, blogs or news sites still don’t know.

Valve also stated that they will be implementing a new trading system with the next update. Players are getting duplicate items right now and deleting them. No one wants to wait two or three months for the next update with duplicate items taking up space.

Valve should have released the trading system with this update or held off on giving out duplicate items. Just like Left for Dead Valve had a really good idea but a poor implementation of it. If they would spend a little more time with their updates and content working I think they would really hit the nail on the head.

Team Fortress 2 has gone from a goofy FPS to a mixed FPS/MMORPG farming and grinding game. Again, the idea was good but the delivery was poorly planned. Hopefully Valve will come back with a bang and clean up a lot of this mess they made.

Blue_tf2_banner

It’s my opinion that achievement servers were a fine idea. Mainly because I don’t want to go on a server where everyone is playing and ruin their fun by doing achievements to get my weapons.

I have heard plenty of debate about the subject but I believe that the system worked well. You will always have those people who think that achievement servers are bogus and “cheating”.

Usually those are the same people who will complain when you come on their server and try to get your achievements while they’re trying to play. That’s about the time they start screaming for you to go to an achievement server.

I really enjoyed the class updates and knowing that I had control over when I would receive my weapons. I would put in the time to do the achievements and gain them.

Now all you have to do is leave your computer on for days at a time and eventually you’ll collect some weapons.

While I know the fix is coming but I still think the system could have been thought out a lot better. Some other ideas that could have been used in their system are:

  • Give everyone weapons on update day without any stipulations
  • Revert back to not having any special weapons or upgrades
  • Make the weapons easier to unlock through achievements
  • Let players choose what weapons they want to unlock

Since the Sniper vs Spy update the TF2 community has been in an uproar about the new update. Valve did put out an official statement on the subject and changes they were going to implement. We will see how well they do with their fixes.

TF2_logo_question

One of the biggest questions we keep getting is exactly how you can achieve the new TF2 weapons. Is there a specific amount of time? Is there any way to determine how exactly it works?

Well Valve did release yesterday this official statement about the timing issues:

How long do I have to play to get an item?

  • When we were tuning this system we first looked at the average amount of time that players spend playing TF2 daily. From there, we set the goal of most players having around 20 items in their inventory after a couple of weeks of play. If you’re someone who plays a lot of TF2, you’re going to get items a lot faster than that. In the first few hours after the release yesterday, we had some issues that prevented the system from working properly, so that timeframe was not indicative of the system as it’s designed.

So the system will now award weapons for time played. I’m not sure how exactly this is different than gaining them through achievements.

Players can make a server sit in spectate or afk and farm weapons while not even doing anything. So now you don’t have to do anything at all to gain weapons, litterally.

Valve also made mention of implimenting a new feature where you can trade extra items you gain with other players:

Is this the way we’ll find items from now on?

  • Like everything else we build, we’ll be iterating on this system for a while, and have a lot of features planned. Some of the next things we have planned are:
  • Item trading. This is why you’re finding duplicates.
  • Giving players a method to influence the system so they   can work directly toward getting specific items.
  • Adding more rare items like the hats.
  • We’re going to be working on and rolling these out while we’re also working on the next class pack, with the goal being to get it all released before then.

    I wish Valve would have released these features with this update. Now people are forced to hold on to weapons they may not want to keep until Valve puts in the new system for players to trade them.

    So for now fellow players hold on to those items and wait until Valve releases another update for you trade them from person to person. Maybe you’ll be able to get some gold or jewels for your time. Who knows exactly what they’ll do this time.