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TF2 gets in-game store, new minigame

TF2 gets in-game store, new minigame

Valve has launched an in-game store for Team Fortress 2 using the Steam Wallet system.

Valve has announced the introduction of an in-game store to Team Fortress 2, allowing players to buy and sell items, like hats or guns.

The store, which was announced with a typically hilarious comic, ties in to the recently announced Steam Wallet system, which allows players to put credit into an account that can be used on Steam at a later date.

Valve has proclaimed the update as the biggest in TF2's history, as it brings a whole bunch of further smaller updates to the game too - more item sets, paintable items and minigames to name a few. 17 community-designed items have been included in the update too, with the designers getting a cut of the profits from sales.

Item prices range between $0.49 and $4.99 at the moment, with the most expensive item being a knife for the Spy class, while the average price is around the $2 mark. Older items have not yet been added to the store yet, but Valve is said to be working on it.

Item drops will still feature in the game as random rewards for kills, but Valve has confirmed to PC Gamer that some items will never be available anywhere else than in the store. Items bought from the store cannot than be traded.

A new Duelling minigame has been added as well, in which players can challenge each other for extra achievements. When two players enter a duel, they're highlighted to each other and unlock extra bonuses for kills, including free items if you engage in enough duels.

Valve's Robin Walker also told PC Gamer that the developer considered making TF2 free to play too, but ultimately dismissed the idea because "the cost of purchasing TF2 again is the main cost that cheaters pay when we catch them”.

Check out our Team Fortress 2 review for more info on the game, then let us know your thoughts in the forums.

42 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
mi1ez 1st October 2010, 09:45 Quote
hmmm...

not sure about this one Valve. Don't want to be beaten because someone has more disposable income!
Mraedis 1st October 2010, 09:58 Quote
Can't say I'm thrilled to see loads of rich newbs prancing around in their newly bought itempack.

But still, vintage items ftw?

@mi1ez, the bonuses are prone to tweaking if they prove to be too powerful, at least that's what the Valve I know would do.
Material 1st October 2010, 10:07 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mi1ez

not sure about this one Valve. Don't want to be beaten because someone has more disposable income!

This isn't the point of the update.
Quote:
Originally Posted by VALVE FAQ

Q: Does this mean the updates are over? Are you going to stop releasing free content now?
A: No. Our plan is to continue updating TF2 just like we always have, adding free maps, game modes, new features, and more. The Mann Co. Store is simply an alternative way of obtaining items that other players can earn during gameplay.

Q: Are you going to start charging for other kinds of content, like maps?
A: No, we have no plans to do this. Segregating players into groups that can't play together, based on who bought what, is something we'd like to avoid.

Q: Will I have to spend money to remain competitive?
A: No. Any items affecting gameplay, and even most purely cosmetic items, will still be obtainable simply by playing the game.
Cyberpower-UK 1st October 2010, 10:31 Quote
LOL @ bottom left on page 4: "They'll take our current inventory and like it! cheaply made unsafe products that catch on fire"
stonedsurd 1st October 2010, 10:31 Quote
Material, did you play today?

I'm guessing not.
r3loaded 1st October 2010, 10:35 Quote
It's not that big a deal, the gameplay changing stuff (i.e. the polycount weapons) can be randomly dropped or crafted. I just crafted most of them today :)

The rest is personalisation stuff, not a big deal. Just play the game already.
steveo_mcg 1st October 2010, 10:49 Quote
Polycount weapons??

I've not played in a while last time i found i was so rusty i wasn't enjoying it as much as i used to this isn't exactly encouraging me.
Goty 1st October 2010, 12:24 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by stonedsurd
Material, did you play today?

I'm guessing not.

You don't have to pay for the items to have every single new one already.

I've got nearly every item in the update already, and I didn't pay a cent. I just crafted the items using the materials I'd been saving up just for this purpose.
mrbens 1st October 2010, 12:44 Quote
Quote:
Steam Wallet system, which allows players to put credit into an account that can be used on Steam at a later date.
I hate this sort of thing, why not just let us pay with real money when we want something instead? So much simpler.
[USRF]Obiwan 1st October 2010, 14:30 Quote
is this a fictionary wallet? or do you actualy need to buy credits with real money?
B1GBUD 1st October 2010, 14:39 Quote
If items we're to have a certain value, then surely you could return items that are randomly dropped in return for credit?
Omnituens 1st October 2010, 15:22 Quote
Obiwan - it's real money. There is a minimum amount you can put in (£4) but all prices are in real currency (none of this credit crap like XBL or Riot Points)
general22 1st October 2010, 16:08 Quote
At this point in time there are items that you can only realistically obtain by buying them that have gameplay effects. Valve are aware of this but until they fix it I will just have to deal with the cashed up nubs.
knuck 1st October 2010, 16:47 Quote
I knew I should have made my thread in this section last night
frontline 1st October 2010, 18:42 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Omnituens
Obiwan - it's real money. There is a minimum amount you can put in (£4) but all prices are in real currency (none of this credit crap like XBL or Riot Points)

Yes, it is real money - your money. So rather than keep it in your own account to earn interest, you give it to Valve for safe keeping. Guess who earns the interest then? :)

Plus you can't withdraw cash from your wallet - once it is in there, you have to purchase items with it.

Can't believe that anyone would want to use this service.
Darkefire 1st October 2010, 19:16 Quote
If you could withdraw cash from your Steam Wallet, I think they might be subject to some banking regulations, which is more trouble than it's worth.

I'm really not sure why anyone would bother purchasing items unless they've got a bunch of disposable income, everything is pretty much cosmetic since the new weapons more often than not have disadvantages that outweigh their benefits (that, and if they do somehow turn out to be better you can bet they'll be nerfed shortly). I suppose if you really, really want a certain hat then it might be worth it, but I'm content to stick with mostly the stock weapons and the stock character design.
Mentai 1st October 2010, 20:01 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by frontline
Quote:
Originally Posted by Omnituens
Obiwan - it's real money. There is a minimum amount you can put in (£4) but all prices are in real currency (none of this credit crap like XBL or Riot Points)

Yes, it is real money - your money. So rather than keep it in your own account to earn interest, you give it to Valve for safe keeping. Guess who earns the interest then? :)

Plus you can't withdraw cash from your wallet - once it is in there, you have to purchase items with it.

Can't believe that anyone would want to use this service.

"One of the interesting side effects of shipping free updates for Team Fortress 2 over the years has been a large and devoted group of people who write us asking if they can simply buy game items directly."

These people exist, I don't see what's so offensive about them. To be honest, with the number of items available in TF2 now, spending $5 to get the exact ones I want immediately rather than working towards them (as I would have had to without this update) is appealing. I have more money than time, if spending a little gets the most out of my time that's fine with me.
frontline 1st October 2010, 21:40 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mentai
Quote:
Originally Posted by frontline
Quote:
Originally Posted by Omnituens
Obiwan - it's real money. There is a minimum amount you can put in (£4) but all prices are in real currency (none of this credit crap like XBL or Riot Points)

Yes, it is real money - your money. So rather than keep it in your own account to earn interest, you give it to Valve for safe keeping. Guess who earns the interest then? :)

Plus you can't withdraw cash from your wallet - once it is in there, you have to purchase items with it.

Can't believe that anyone would want to use this service.

"One of the interesting side effects of shipping free updates for Team Fortress 2 over the years has been a large and devoted group of people who write us asking if they can simply buy game items directly."

These people exist, I don't see what's so offensive about them. To be honest, with the number of items available in TF2 now, spending $5 to get the exact ones I want immediately rather than working towards them (as I would have had to without this update) is appealing. I have more money than time, if spending a little gets the most out of my time that's fine with me.

Oh, i agree - can't blame Valve for exploiting a business opportunity. Or people wanting to buy items.

I just don't see the point of transferring £50 into your 'wallet', spending maybe £30 of it and leaving Valve to look after the balance until there is something else you want to buy.
Matticus 1st October 2010, 23:10 Quote
I like the idea of this, and have been discussing with my friends at great length about the whole system.

We have come to the conclusion that it is fine to allow players to buy items if they don't want to wait for drops. But giving gameplay bonuses to people that are willing to spend £12 on a hat and a few other items to get the full polycount pack (for that class) is a bit annoying, 20% less damage taken from turrets with the soldier is nothing to sniff at. You are usually 1 rocket away from taking it down before it gets you, so if you are willing to spend £15 you can give yourself the advantage to take it down first. Which unbalances gameplay.

But what really takes the biscuit, snipers not dying from headshots by having the whole polycount pack, serously!??!?! That means on maps like hightower where quite often snipers shoot at each other from opposing "balconies" you will be pretty much invulnerable to sniper fire.
steveo_mcg 1st October 2010, 23:27 Quote
I've just played for a couple of hours and didn't really notice it being terribly unbalanced only comment i have on the store though is its ****ing expensive!
Matticus 1st October 2010, 23:55 Quote
I am hoping the perks for having the polycount pack are a little like the Direct Hit.

Allow me to explain...

If you are rubbish with the soldier, the Direct Hit will actually be more of a hindrance than the normal rocket launcher. Meaning you can't buy skill.

If you are pretty good with the soldier the Direct Hit will be good in some situations for you and not others, possibly about level with the normal launcher and using it will be more personal preference.

If you are a god like soldier then what launcher you are using should be the least of the worries of the opposing players.
[PUNK] crompers 1st October 2010, 23:59 Quote
you just know the minute you bought a weapon it'd be dropped the next time you play
steveo_mcg 2nd October 2010, 00:08 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matticus
sense

Here's hoping
r4tch3t 2nd October 2010, 04:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by frontline
Oh, i agree - can't blame Valve for exploiting a business opportunity. Or people wanting to buy items.

I just don't see the point of transferring £50 into your 'wallet', spending maybe £30 of it and leaving Valve to look after the balance until there is something else you want to buy.
It would be useful for younger people who don't have credit cards or paypal and have to use their parents card, rather than asking every time they can just put some money in there and they can buy when they want. Also you don't have to use the wallet, you can do a direct credit card purchase.

I also think the store is a good idea, as Mentai said. It can also bring about real world value to the weapons, then you can trade your TF2 weapons you get for beer :D
Pete J 2nd October 2010, 18:45 Quote
I've just popped in to say the comic mentioned in the article is bloody hilarious!
Showerhead 2nd October 2010, 18:46 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matticus
I like the idea of this, and have been discussing with my friends at great length about the whole system.

We have come to the conclusion that it is fine to allow players to buy items if they don't want to wait for drops. But giving gameplay bonuses to people that are willing to spend £12 on a hat and a few other items to get the full polycount pack (for that class) is a bit annoying, 20% less damage taken from turrets with the soldier is nothing to sniff at. You are usually 1 rocket away from taking it down before it gets you, so if you are willing to spend £15 you can give yourself the advantage to take it down first. Which unbalances gameplay.

But what really takes the biscuit, snipers not dying from headshots by having the whole polycount pack, serously!??!?! That means on maps like hightower where quite often snipers shoot at each other from opposing "balconies" you will be pretty much invulnerable to sniper fire.
I believe a side affect of the snipers not being able to be headshot is that they can't headshot anyone either.

What's bothering me about this is that to gain the class bonus you also need the hat. The chances of getting just one of the hats you would need for any class are tiny effectively meaning you would have to pay to get a class bonus.
Hovis 2nd October 2010, 20:08 Quote
I think it's scummy to charge people significant wedges of money for an edge in an online shooter. Why not just buy some hacks if having an advantage means that much to you.
Cthippo 2nd October 2010, 22:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete J
I've just popped in to say the comic mentioned in the article is bloody hilarious!

That is the first new product announcement I've actually enjoyed in a long time! :D
Mraedis 2nd October 2010, 23:21 Quote
I just noticed there are some items you have to buy. Like keys to unlock the Mann .Co chests, and dueling tokens, whatever those are.

Bad move Valve, bad bad move.
r4tch3t 3rd October 2010, 02:53 Quote
I have seen many people find the duelling mini game and as for the crates you can trade them. The server I was on last night had about 10 crates being traded. Some people are willing to buy the keys so if you find a crate just tell people and see what you can get for it. As for the the hat for the set you can craft the hats you know, just from other things, 75 weapons = 1 class specific hat so if you play enough you can craft the hat you want (still random but just keep trying)

Personally I don't think it matters, the bonuses are not that great and can easily be negated by a little bit of skill. Plus I am sure like normal all items will be excluded from clan matches etc. So if you are playing casually then a couple of people on the other side will have full sets but then so will some on your team.
Goty 3rd October 2010, 06:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mraedis
I just noticed there are some items you have to buy. Like keys to unlock the Mann .Co chests, and dueling tokens, whatever those are.

Bad move Valve, bad bad move.

Luckily there's nothing special about the items in the crates, except for maybe you'll get an "unusual" item, which only differs from the item it is based on in appearance.
Mraedis 3rd October 2010, 09:29 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Goty
Luckily there's nothing special about the items in the crates, except for maybe you'll get an "unusual" item, which only differs from the item it is based on in appearance.

Yes. But it means you will HAVE to trade the chests away, and how will you feel if the person that traded it gets a super-rare item out of it? ^_^
Pooeypants 3rd October 2010, 09:57 Quote
One of the items allows a spy to auto instant re-disguise after a successful stab. I'm sorry, that's just wrong.
Sim0n 3rd October 2010, 12:03 Quote
Having just spent about 2 hours playing on two different publics, im at the point of wanting to uninstall TF2 now, a game i have enjoyed since release, for god knows how many years now.

I know publics are publics, and you cant expect much. But in a 32 player server, having 4 or 5 players each side NOT playing, and just sitting in the spawn zone spamming what they have to trade, is just pointless, and damaging to the game.

If this trading system is going to stay, one of the following needs to happen (and im not sure if these are already in place ;

1. Trade "offline", or outside of the game, via forums, or IRC.
2. Have a server cvar that can turn off trading in your server, so people can concentrate on gaming.
3. Simply make trading servers, where the sole point is to trade. Much like achievement servers.
steveo_mcg 3rd October 2010, 12:22 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pooeypants
One of the items allows a spy to auto instant re-disguise after a successful stab. I'm sorry, that's just wrong.

Yes but it doesn't allow him to disguise until he has performed the first stab so you can see how that is a major downside for a weak spy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sim0n

I know publics are publics, and you cant expect much. But in a 32 player server, having 4 or 5 players each side NOT playing, and just sitting in the spawn zone spamming what they have to trade, is just pointless, and damaging to the game.

Like after all updates you can expect a period where the game is unsettled but i'm sure normal sevice will resume soon enough. Only shame with this update is that there is no counter, after the spy update playing pyro was great fun as there were lots of James Bond wannabes just asking to be bbqed.
Matticus 4th October 2010, 00:03 Quote
I played for a good few hours tonight and noticed some players really dominating with new items, but it seemed a good enough mix between teams that it didn't alter the outcome of each round, just the amount of kills for that player.

I did get 2 drops on my first death which I was pleased about, only gloves and the choc bar for heavy but better than nothing, right? Well apparently my luck continued as I totaled 7 drops tonight, one of which being the replacement for the buff banner, the battalions backup. :D

It seems pretty good, much more useful for charges than the buff banner. You seem to do more damage overall by surviving longer instead of spamming misplaced crits.
WarrenJ 4th October 2010, 10:02 Quote
Have you seen the prices?? Jesus I thought it was in Yen, looked twice and it's in pounds sterling. You can pay more for a Rocket Launcher than you would buying a new copy of the damn game. I saw a hat there for £15. I'd rather go and buy a new game all together than buy anything from there.
Kamakazie! 4th October 2010, 13:46 Quote
As usual, people posting here about certain items benefits without bothering to look at the drawbacks that the item gives....

..... Sounds like every other update then.


Thes items are no different to usual class updates. Every benefit has a drawback. Valve isn't stupid and they know what would happen if they unbalanced the game through the introduction of purchase only items that had significant benefits.
Matticus 4th October 2010, 21:18 Quote
I am sure that explains why after every update Valve tweak everything to balance the game again.

They may be awesome but they aren't perfect, the only way to test something like this is to release it and see what happens.
WarrenJ 5th October 2010, 10:14 Quote
/me wonders how long it will take before there's a WOW style auction house for TF2.
general22 5th October 2010, 14:33 Quote
Still looks like the only way to get the gameplay affecting hat/item set is through buying it. Very poor form from valve.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sim0n
I know publics are publics, and you cant expect much. But in a 32 player server, having 4 or 5 players each side NOT playing, and just sitting in the spawn zone spamming what they have to trade, is just pointless, and damaging to the game..

Err its a 32 player server, it was going to be a **** experience anyway.
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