Team Fortress has returned riding on the Source engine for its second coming. It’s a strictly multiplayer game where you can choose to play as one of 9 classes. Each class has its own strong and weak point. To give you an example for kind of chaos that goes on in game—the Heavy who is like the tank can be depended on to take the battering while he is healed by a Medic following him. Your Scouts and Soldiers can sneak and take out the opponents. There are flamethrowers and grenadiers that can help fend off incoming attacks. There are spies that can turn invisible and camouflage themselves into players of the opposite team. Snipers can be found picking out unsuspecting prey—weak medics and retreating heavy’s from high sniping points.
Everything in the game has a cartoon theme to it. This means the graphics are very colourful and the maps and player models are one brilliant visual treat—much like you’d expect to see in Pixar movies. Each player type is a work of art—each with their own identity that comes out through their image and their voices. If there’s something wrong with the game then, it’s that there are only 6 maps but more will be coming out pretty soon.
The sound acting for each of the characters is just impressive and there are so many of the voice commands for the most joyful and painful of situations you may get into. There are different kinds of emotions and gestures that are shown by the models, depending on the situation.
The performance doesn’t suffer a lot either in Team Fortress—if you could run Half Life 2 on your rig, you can run this pretty nicely as well. Do remember that you’ll need a better processor as you’re going to see anywhere upto 32 players running about the place with all kinds of projectiles and particles flying everywhere—it is a chaotic game.
There are some 3 types of gameplay which are linked to the type of map—capture the flag, where you run straight into the team’s base and grab their ‘intelligence’ and run back to your own. The Control point capturing map and territory capturing map are similar, and involve capturing important points in the map. The gameplay in all the maps is fresh and it will make you laugh your guts out. There’s voice chat in-game, so you can plan out your rushes and ambush strategies with your teammates.
What is the scenario for us here in India? Well, there’s a buzzing Indian Team Fortress 2 community on Steam that’s growing stronger by the day and a few Indian servers as well. More importantly there are many servers in the east—Singapore, Malaysia, Taiwan, etc. Ping times range between 100 and 150 ms to servers in Asia, and even in Europe. There’s the peace of mind knowing that Valve has brilliant Net-code in almost all their online games, so don’t worry about not having single digit pings to servers.
There’s no doubt that Team Fortress 2 has to be one of the most innovative and most unique multiplayer games to come along in a long time. You can buy Team Fortress 2 as a standalone game through Steam or you get it as a part of the Orange Box, which is the cheaper option. The price for the Orange Box is just Rs 999 for India—a lot cheaper than what you’d pay online (Rs. 2,100 or $49.95). Let’s put it this way, for a maximum price of Rs. 999, you get Half Life 2, Episode 1 and 2, Portal and Team Fortress 2, which by itself is worth the entire Rs. 999. Be warned though—many people have had problems with discs in the Orange Box here in India—they don’t work, so be prepared to use backup plan of downloading the games through Steam. Team Fortress alone will take a day on a 256kbps connection but its well worth it.
Rating : 9/10
Developer : Valve Corporation
Publisher : Valve Corporation
We’re giving Team Fortress 2 a 9 out of 10 rating, and here’s why: brilliant addictive gameplay, great maps (and more to come), great netcode, good numbers of servers to play on, cheap, and it make you makes you wet your pants and your tummy explode when you’re done laughing…isn’t that reason enough?
Team Fortress 2