[UPDATE] PC, Mac editions of Orange Box pack-in will soon be solely monetized by Mann-conomy microtransactions.
Last week, a report surfaced that Valve was working on a free-to-play project. Today, that project was revealed as being the PC edition of the popular shooter Team Fortress 2, which was initially shipped as part of the compilation The Orange Box in 2007. Since then, the Windows version of the game has undergone many updates, the latest of which will apparently transform it into a microtransaction-funded title.
"We've been toying with the idea of making Team Fortress  free-to-play ever since the Mann-conomy update," Valve software developer Robin Walker told British magazine Develop. Introduced last September, the Mann-conomy system let players spend real-world cash on in-game items, ranging from weapon kits to outfits for the soldier, sniper, scout, pyro, and spy classes.
According to Walker, microtransactions will be the sole source of funding for Team Fortress 2 going forward. The game is currently offered as a two-week free trial on Valve's online service Steam, with all pricing having recently been removed as part of an extensive update. Develop reports that Valve will forgo any other funding option, such as advertising or a premium subscription model.
[UPDATE] Valve has now officially announced that both the Mac and the PC versions of Team Fortress 2 will be free-to-play on a permanent basis. The debut trailer for the new version of the game is below.
For more on Team Fortress 2, read GameSpot's full review.
i called it! that players are going to ask for a refund for this! read the msgs below! fanboys gave me a thumbs-down for that msg! so sucks for u!
It's been awhile since i've played a game past midnight until 1:30 in the morning, TF2 is one of the best multiplayer games I've played in a long while.
It sucks for people who bought it recently, but I find this a great decision, as both rebooting the community and getting more money, has succeeded. I'm happy to see my favourite servers are now always filled instead of empty most of the time.
@Masta_Rix Tell that to Activision, who has been ripping you off for a couple of years now, and making you pay for map packs that are not worth the money and should be with COD when you buy it.
You do not have to purchase anything to "Stay competitive" even people that have played for ages still use alot of the default weapons, the added weapons are "Alternatives" not upgrades(in most cases) Weapons like the Medic's Ubercharge and Kritzkrieg are a prime example - the Ubercharge is effective on offense, destroying sentries, staying alive, while the Kritzkrieg is MUCH better from a defensive Medic.
Argh I cannot play TF2 now, too many new guys asking questions like "how can I get the bow as sniper?". Will return in a couple of months when people have got more wiser
The only thing that annoys me about this is that I bought the game less than 2 weeks before it became Free to Play. If I had waited, I could have just downloaded the F2P version and bought a hat which upgrades your F2P to Premium. I would have had the premium version, a hat and paid less. @dRuGGeRnaut : ALL the weapons and hats can be found (You find 7-12 items a week on average) or crafted in the game FOR FREE. The downside are; 1: You may not find the specific item you are looking for straight away. 2: To craft weapons and hats, you need the specific items that go together to craft them (e.g. A+B=C). Say you have item A, and you've spent weeks unluckily finding item B to create item C, you could always buy item C instead. All-in-All, the free option is there right along side the buy option.
dRuGGeRnaUt You could pay to get those extra weapons or you could find them while playing or unlock them by getting certain amounts of achievements on certain classes everything besides hats can be unlocked without paying.
Also, anytime a company does the "here buy some outfits" or "here buy some weapons" they get attacked all over the internet. Just cause it's a company you like doesn't make it ok. This game going "free to play" is cool, but before hand, selling "horse armour" is a real **** move. When oblivion sold "armour sets" they got SCREAMED at buy everyone, yet when valve does it, everyone is like "YAY i can pay to make my guy more customizable! valve is so cool!" either like pointless DLC or hate it, just dont change your opinon when your favorite game company starts doing it too.
So before this went "free to play" did you have to buy these weapons through the mann-conomy to stay competitive? was the only way to get these new weapons, to buy them? even after buying the tf2 game? if that's true, or if those "purchase" only guns were an advantage over the standard ones, valve replaces my top spot for the "*****-bag" award. any company that charges extra for weapons, especially ones that are more powerful than what's previously available, are ****'s. no if's, and's or but's. that's pretty much forcing you to buy these weapons to stay competitive.. :(
@Neophyte555 wow! a free hat! im so thankfull i payed like 15 euros for a hat! really? the hat looks bad as hell (to not say other thing) and if i want i can get a free hat without robbing, a way better one
team fortress 2 just beat counterstrike and counterstrike source as the most popular and most played game on steam. great job, but hey, aren't all 3 of those games made by valve?
This is the game I should have bought instead of being ripped off by L4D. LOL, why did I pay for half a game on release, that was replaced less than a year later. Time to see what all this is about.
Went on TF2 last night and I could tell more then half the players were new lol. How could I tell? When half the team is a spy and they all rush me with a knife... what? don't know how to back stab?
TF2 is the kind of horrible spammy mess nowadays that I'd expect to see in a free to play game, I'm surprised it didn't happen earlier.
@czloviekVoodka I have yet to find a cheater. There we're a couple of spammers, nothing a ban can't fix.
Wheee, more cheaters and more "wow look at my uber n3w 5w337 h47!"... well there is always Fotress Forever.
Oh, and sure, Valve can be kind of asses at times,*coughcoughalflife2episode3coughcough* they wouldn't go so far as to make Portal 1 free. Hell, it's 10 dollars anyway, and Portal 2 is too new for that. L4D1, sure, it's pretty damn old. Half Life 2 Episode 1 is available as a demo, so stop goddamn complaining and get over it! But on the lack of heads up, I know how you people feel. I bought my Wii for 200$. Now, it's 150$, with Nunchuck, Wii Wheel, Mario Kart Wii, and all that crap. If I'm right, it may be packed with the 2 Wii Sports games! Psycho_Hands@Yes, me too.
This is a super smart move on Valve's part the game was released in 2007 so by now a lot of the sells of just the game has die down, but the community is still strong so make free to expand the community and use the mann co. sorry to make money from it. cuase lets face it most tf2 players have used the store for something even if it was a 2 dollar key to see what was in your first crate. And to the babies crying about I payed for the game and all i got was a hat. with all the updates that valve released and new items, maps, etc. you have gotten well over 20 bucks worth of stuff so embrace the new F2P tf2 and get ready for the noobs to cry about how hard the game is.
Frame_Dragger@Stfu. This is damn fine news for people like me who are scouring Steam for demos and cheap games. Anyway, I'm really happy.
well the game has been around for 4 years now... i think they wanted to draw more players to keep funding the servers, after all there is still premium accounts and other game store stuff
hurr hurr i paid for this game and i played it a lot and now i just wasted all that money and i didn't get anything hurr hurr oh wait, i got to play a game before it went free-to-play, i paid what i considered was a fair price at the time, i got more than my money's worth already and to top it off i got a free hat quit yo' whinin haters
Something Awful listed all the reasons TF2 going F2P is bad. http://www.somethingawful.com/d/video-game-article/team-fortress-free.php Look, I'll put a few here: "More people means more hats. Hats totally ruin everything. With all those hats, it was impossible to aim guns, run around levels, and shoot people. This is clearly a stunt to trick more people into installing Steam. Gaming as a whole will lose, as the Steam platform is terribly unfair to consumers and publishers, unlike EA's Origin, which offers download insurance at reasonable prices. With so many additional players waiting to get into servers, it will be harder to get away with switching away from a losing team without being kicked. New people can't play as well as experienced people. They should just go away so the community can become smaller and more impossible, rather than staying and becoming better like you did several years ago. What's next, free Left 4 Dead and Portal content? Ugh. There's only so much ammo in the Team Fortress universe. These new guys are going to hog it all. If Valve has to focus on all the free players, what are the chances we'll ever get a "Meet The Control Point" video? The chances of us getting the long-rumored Play By Email option are now pretty much zilch."
People need to quit complaining about the lack of headsup about TF2 going free. If you hadn't bought the Orange Box or TF2 already, then you shouldn't even call yourself a gamer. Valve 4 Life
@emperiox That's what is supposed to happen. Valve have to finalise everything INTERNALLY before telling everyone. It's not dishonest.
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