The Way it Was: A Week of Looking Back

Hi everyone! aabicus here, and you may have noticed these days that I’ve been pretty much invisible on the SPUF side of things. My last article was in February (still haven’t caught a shiny Rattata…) and the SPUF of Legend‘s last video was 3 months ago. (That should change soon, though! Got another one in the final editing phase.) My main excuse, unfortunately, is money. In a nutshell, after graduating college I co-founded a gaming studio but got written out of the contract at the last minute. Without a backup lined up, I had to leave my apartment for financial reasons and I’ve since been transferring my skillsets into commissions to recoup my financial reserves. For the last few months I’ve been releasing regular videos on the VGFAQ YouTube channel (though they’re more gaming journalism or walkthroughs than my SPUF content), and I’ve been writing esport-focused articles on DailyEsports.gg. (I’ve also been shoutcasting Overwatch matches on Twitch!)

But Medic’s been singlehandedly keeping SPUF alive through a tireless stream of daily articles, and she deserves a break. So for every day this week, I’ll be guest-writing the daily featured article again! Most of these articles will be ancient articles from the Drafts folder I never finished back when I was Chief Editor, so expect some TF2 and other sundry videos. Consider it maybe a ‘blast from the past’-style retrospective week.

Because honestly, it’s kinda surprising to what degree TF2 itself has stopped doing anything. The Official TF2 blog actually stopped posting the same day I did, and the last update with any content beyond random tournament medals was 2019 Smissmas, one of two holidays that appear to still happen (the other being Scream Fortress). And let’s be honest, for the most part both updates have become rehashes of the seasonal content created in previous, more active years. I logged into Smissmas 2018 to get my stocking stuffer, of course, and then I giftapulted somebody a key, but beyond that, it just felt like any other day in TF2.

And no, I couldn’t find B3kkdhans3n702 on Steam to see whether he’s a real person or a bot. Either way, enjoy the key Hans!

I’m not blowing anyone’s mind by saying that TF2’s heyday is in the rearview mirror. But on the other hand, I think TF2 is one of the few games that can survive such an event and remain a ‘cool old grandpa’ even as all the kids flock to the shiny new options that are regularly getting new content. Remember, every game needs to die eventually, and few can boast as much content as TF2 has released over the years. TF2 was revolutionary in so many ways, being one of the first ‘games as a service’ titles and having one of the earliest loot box systems, both elements of which have been copied to death by other shooters in this day and age.

TF2’s impact will forever be felt outside the franchise’s direct community as well. As a Valve game and one of the most popular free-to-play titles on Steam, TF2 models and characters will forever be a part of Source Filmmaker, still one of the most widely-used machinima platforms on the internet. And thanks to TF2’s period of rampant Steam crossovers, there’s a whole host of other games that give their players a cosmetic incentive to give TF2 a try.

I guess in conclusion, I’m saying that TF2 will never have to suffer the death that most games must suffer. Especially with the dedicated community releasing new steady content and places like the subreddit and community tournaments providing new hubs for communication. This week, expect to read several TF2 articles doing their part!

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