"If you thought all those duplicate hats and weapons in your inventory were incredibly useful before, man, were you wrong! You were also in the quiet minority, if the forums were any indication," developer Valve explains.
"EVERYTHING in your inventory now contributes towards something you actually WANT, and can build YOURSELF! If you're super clever, you'll even be able to craft new items before others can earn them the old fashioned way...Blueprints--some of which you'll get right off the bat, others of which you'll have to puzzle out on your own--will tell you which ingredients you'll need to combine to make different items."
The update, along with its mysterious and fiercely contested seventh item, will hit Team Fortress 2 on Thursday, December 17. Thanks to Dyllers for the heads up.