Half-Life is back, and that’s all anyone is talking about. But spare a thought for that other old Valve game, Team Fortress 2.
A cursory glance at the Team Fortress 2 community reveals it’s resigned to defeat after a recent report confirmed Valve has pretty much downed tools on the team-based shooter.
In the video below, Valve News Network reports on an interview with veteran Valve employee Greg Coomer, who said “hardly anyone” is working on Team Fortress 2. According to Coomer, Valve is “just going to try and not shut it down or anything”. Here’s the quote:
“There are very few people working on Team Fortress. I don’t know the exact number, but it’s hardly anyone anymore. I think that’s kind of obvious, because we don’t have big updates for that game really anymore. We’re just keeping it going, and we’re just going to try and not shut it down or anything. But there’s hardly anyone working on it.”
That doesn’t sound good, does it?
Perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised. It’s been 765 days since Team Fortress 2 last saw a major update, according to Creators.TF.
But is there hope? Today, the official Valve Twitter account posted to point to its recent announcement of Half-Life: Alyx, as well as major updates to the eternally popular Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and, of course, cashcow Steam. But it also said “more to come soon”.
It’s been a big week here at Valve. Beyond the Half-Life: Alyx announcement, our teams have shipped major updates to CS:GO and Steam, with more to come soon.
— Valve (@valvesoftware) November 23, 2019
Team Fortress 2 fans are, more in hope than expectation I think, wondering if this means their game will get some love from Valve. And it’s not like Team Fortress 2 is entirely forgotten within Valve’s walls, either. While it’s clear the game is a low priority, Valve continues to release very small updates, the latest of which was issued just this week. And eagle-eyed fans spotted a Team Fortress 2 Easter egg in the stunning Half-Life: Alyx announcement trailer.
Don’t hold your breath! Team Fortress 2 is 12 years-old now, and while at the time of this article’s publication, Valve’s official figures suggests the game is in rude health with 55,000 concurrent players, Teamwork.TF reports 17,356 players are in-game. Why the discrepancy? Teamwork.TF doesn’t track idlers who are farming hats to sell, apparently.
So, it’s over to the community, and Valve’s Grey Coomer has faith in them. Speaking to Valve News Network, he said:
“I think it’s awesome that the community has tried to pick up the slack, because a lot of times, their work is better than ours. And they should know that. They probably do know that. And it’s not the case that just because people work here they’re making better than any of that content. Sometimes we do a better job, but a lot of the time the community knows Team Fortress well enough to make stuff that’s even better than we could.”
For now, though, Team Fotress 2 players feel a bit like this: