Team Fortress 2 launches public beta

Team Fortress 2 thumb

Valve's department of mad scientists have decided that they need more guinea pigs on which to test their insane schemes, and have decided to launch a Team Fortress 2 public beta. The beta will play host to massive game changing experiments and will let Valve test out new tech without breaking Team Fortress 2 proper. Read on for details on the first round of changes in the beta, and details on how to sign up.

These are the changes for the first beta release.

Three Natascha variants:

  • 40% damage
  • 25% damage, -25% health
  • Spin-up/down time increased, slowdown-on-hit effect falls off over distance.

Map changes:

  • cp_granary: new entrance added into the RED and BLU mid ramp room.
  • cp_5gorge: 5 CP version of cp_gorge.

Misc balance changes:

  • Players being healed by a medic are immune to movement-impairing effects generated by hit-scan weapons.

In future we can look forward to "higher level, game-wide experiments", like doubling all player health. The beta should prove to be an interesting insight into the ideas Valve have for Team Fortress 2's future, and also a good excuse to play TF2 with some crazy rulesets. The beta can be installed directly from your Steam games library, so it's dead easy to jump in and test the new changes. Full details on the beta launch can be found on the Team Fortress 2 blog .

For more on Valve's plans for Team Fortress 2, check out part one and part two of our huge Valve interview. What do you think of the first round of changes, and what rules would you put into the beta?

Tom Senior

Part of the UK team, Tom was with PC Gamer at the very beginning of the website's launch—first as a news writer, and then as online editor until his departure in 2020. His specialties are strategy games, action RPGs, hack ‘n slash games, digital card games… basically anything that he can fit on a hard drive. His final boss form is Deckard Cain.