After a week's worth of largely entertaining Team Fortress 2 "Spy Vs. Sniper" updates, Valve has officially released new content for two of the game's classes. But things aren't exactly going as planned.
As with most TF2 class updates, general whining ensues about how everything is ruined, how the developers have phoned the update in, and just how unfair the game has become. But with the latest change in how players unlock new items and weapons, an attempt by Valve to limit Achievement gorging to be "First!!!1" to get weapon X or sandwich Y, things are taking a turn for the unbalanced.
The Spy Vs. Sniper update brought about a bit of randomization to item unlocks, dropping Achievement based milestones. That change was an attempt to address the glut of specific classes populating servers every time a new update shipped and to deal with imbalance—the best players were scoring unlockable items much quicker than the noobs, making the playing field even more off-kilter.
So now you just need to play Team Fortress 2 as you regularly would, with unlockable equipment being doled out under less strict rules.
But some of those rules seem too random. Nor are they public knowledge (yet). Players are reporting logging hours and getting nothing. Some are allegedly leaving the game running in spectator mode and reaping the benefits. Not how it was designed, says Valve's Robin Walker.
He tells Rock Paper Shotgun: "As in everything else we do, we want to iterate, so this is really the first step towards our desired implementation. 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," Walker explains, "with the cosmetic hats being the rare finds."
Whether that's any comfort to TF2 players feeling slighted by the lack of handouts remains to be seen. No word yet on when players can expect an update to those rules, but hopefully it's soon.