Team Fortress 2 Spy vs. Sniper Update Released, Brings New Way to Earn Unlockable Weapons, Hats

Update 2: As some users have noticed, there are a few bugs in the new unlockable system. Valve's Robin Walker explains to RPS:

"As in everything else we do, we want to iterate, so this is really the first step towards our desired implementation," said Walker. "We also think we have bugs in the system as well, since we're seeing some players not finding any items after a few hours of play, which is not at all how it's tuned. We want unlockable drops to be a pretty regular occurrence for players, with the cosmetic hats being the rare finds."

Update: TF2 steward Robin Walker has confirmed to us that there is now a new way to earn unlockable weapons in the game. "Items now drop randomly, in addition to the old (pre Spy/Sniper unlockables) achievement tied weapons," said Walker. "We're going to release info on the new system on the blog tomorrow."

Walker also noted that a series of head-slot hat items (see above) can now be earned in the same fashion.

Original story: The largest Team Fortress 2 update to date has finally been released by developer Valve, kick-starting a four-day free trial for the game. Valve also notes that the title will be 50% off its regular price on Steam for the duration of the trial, knocking it down to $10.

The update includes two new Arena mode maps, a new Payload Race game mode, and unlockable weapons and achievements for the Spy and Sniper classes.

The patch notes reveal several other interesting changes, including a new community map (Hoodoo), significant improvements to the spy class, and other tweaks to the game at large.

The full patch notes follow:

Updates to Team Fortress 2 have been released. The specific changes include: Maps

  • Added new map, Pipeline. Pipeline is the first map in a new game mode named payload race, which uses two carts in each map instead of only one like traditional payload maps
  • Added new arena map Sawmill
  • Added new arena map Nucleus
  • Added new community payload map Hoodoo
Sniper Changes
  • Added new sniper rifle replacement, The Huntsman. Instead of a sniper rifle, you have a bow that allows you to move around faster while firing, and fire more quickly than the sniper rifle. Works better at medium range than the standard rifle
  • Added new SMG replacement, Jarate. If thrown on an enemy they will take more damage for short period of time. Also extinguishes flames on yourself or allies
  • Added new SMG replacement, The Razorback. Will protect you against a single spy backstab, and stun the spy for a short period of time. Comes with a 15% move speed penalty for the wearer
  • Standard sniper rifle now shoots through friendly players
  • Added 54 new Sniper voice lines
  • Added 35 new Sniper achievements
  • Added new revolver replacement, The Ambassador. First shot is very accurate and will cause a critical hit if it hits an enemy's head. Accuracy is poor for a period after that
  • Added new watch replacement, the Dead Ringer. When armed, you will appear in all ways to die to the first damage you take from an enemy. You'll be cloaked for 8 second after taking this damage. Upon de-cloaking you'll make a loud, distinct sound
  • Added new watch replacement, the Cloak and Dagger. Your cloak meter is only depleted when you move, so you can stay invisible indefinitely if you're standing still
  • Spy name tags now show up properly when disguised as their own team
  • Fixed a bug that would cause spectators to see disguise weapons incorrectly
  • Fixed a bug where enemy spies disguised as friendly spies would have cigarettes that didn't burn
  • Fixed a bug where overhealing disguised spies would show the wrong overhealing amount to the medic
  • Made it more obvious on first person view model when your motion cloak is out of juice and you are partially visible
  • Also made it more obvious on first person view model when you're bumped while cloaked
  • Improved the way your disguise weapon is determined to make it clearer and fix a couple of rare issues
  • Spies disguised as enemy spies now get a random mask to help complete the disguise, and their target id will be set appropriately
  • Spies disguised as medics now have an Ubercharge: line in their disguise target info
  • Spies outward facing "disguise health" now matches their disguise target when they first apply the disguise
  • Spies can now pick up health kits for their "disguise health", even when uninjured
  • Disguise UI doesn't show up in minimum UI mode (hud_minmode)
  • Spies that disguise as a player using an unlockable now show that unlockable in hand
  • Spies can now use enemy teleporters
  • Added 70 new Spy voice lines
  • Added 34 new Spy achievements
Scoreboard changes
  • Dominations no longer get wiped when teams switch sides
  • Dead players draw slightly darker in scoreboard
  • Converted class labels to class icons
  • All players now display the total number of people they are dominating
  • Fixed a bug that would cause the scout's ball to regenerate at inappropriate times
  • Demomen can now detonate their stickies while taunting
  • Flamethrower's air burst now extinguishes fire on friendly targets
  • Grenades and rockets deflected by a pyro under the effects of Kritzkrieg will now be criticals
  • The Heavy and Sniper now have new custom death animations
  • Fixed payload HUD not updating properly if you join in the middle of a match and the cart isn't moving
  • Engineer's dispensers now give 20%, 30%, or 40% of player's max_ammo (for each ammo type) on each use, based on the level of the dispenser
  • Added -sillygibs commandline parameter which will allow the non-violent gibs to be enabled
  • Added a new taunt for the Kritzkrieg, which also heals for 10 points
  • Improved the deathcam camera handling used when a player plays a custom death animation
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From The Chatty
  • reply
    May 21, 2009 5:45 PM

    Love the new tweaks to the Scoreboard!

    * Dominations no longer get wiped when teams switch sides
    * Dead players draw slightly darker in scoreboard
    * Converted class labels to class icons
    * All players now display the total number of people they are dominating

    • reply
      May 21, 2009 6:04 PM

      * All players now display the total number of people they are dominating


    • reply
      May 21, 2009 7:18 PM

      anyone find a way to get the class names back on the scoreboard? not digging the icons

      • reply
        May 22, 2009 5:40 AM

        Yeah, after playing it for a while now. I do NOT like the new scoreboard icons. They're very hard to read and not as intuitive as I thought they would be. If they were going to do symbols. They should have made them a bit bigger, simpler, and monochromatic. (Matching the teams color scheme).

        As of now it makes the scoreboard look like something from Bejeweled.

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