Team Fortress Classic
|Team Fortress Classic|
The box art for Team Fortress Classic depicts the heavy class against the backdrop of Half-Life's box art.
|Distributor(s)||Sierra Studios (retail)
|Distribution||Optical disk, download|
Team Fortress Classic is a team-based online multiplayer first-person shooter video game released by Valve Corporation in 1999. It is based on the 1996 Quake game modification Team Fortress, and is itself a base for Valve's later game Team Fortress 2.
Matches in Team Fortress Classic pit two teams against each other, with each team member having access to nine distinct classes. Competition takes place in a variety of scenarios, usually capture the flag, VIP protection, or territorial control. Games are played on a large number of maps created by Valve or supplied by the user community. Since its release, the game has undergone significant upgrades to player models and game modes.
According to GameSpy, as of 2008, the game is one of the ten most played Half-Life modifications in terms of players. In 2010, the game was included as one of the titles in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die.
Team Fortress Classic revolves around a number of teams competing in a variety of game modes with players selecting one of nine classes to play as. Typically, players have the choice of two equal teams, red and blue, although certain game modes allow for more than two teams with access to different classes. Each game can sustain a maximum of 32 players. The way a player acts in a game is mostly defined by which class they select, and as such, Team Fortress Classic relies heavily on teamwork between players of different classes.
The use of teamwork is what makes Team Fortress unique. Before the game was released, most gamers were playing games such as Doom which were in a straightforward deathmatch format. Team Fortress not only offered objective based gameplay in which players must work together in order to achieve a team goal, but also offered classes which created a rock paper scissors type of gameplay. This encouraged users to play varied classes and also to use the classes in conjunction with one another in order to gain the greatest advantage.
Team Fortress Classic supports several types of play, with distinct objectives for teams of players to pursue.
- Capture the Flag
On Capture the Flag maps, the objective for both teams is to capture the enemy flag and return it to their base while preventing the opposing team from doing the same. Some maps of this type have twists on this formula, such as having multiple flags and requiring a team to capture them all or requiring a team to perform a task such as disabling security grids before being able to access the flag.
Standard maps have both teams trying to capture the enemy's flag until the point limit is reached or the time-limit expires. They must prevent their enemy from achieving the same.
Football maps feature a common flag, or in most cases ball, that has to be pushed onto an enemy capture point.
Reverse maps have the opposing teams bringing their flag to the enemy base and then capturing the flag in the enemy base.
Variant maps feature limitless possibilities. Official maps of this typology feature multiple common flags that are centrally located, as on Flagrun, or a match that takes place for each team entirely within the enemy base, as on Rock 2.
- Control Point
Control Point maps have two main types of game modes.
Standard maps consist of several command points that must be captured, typically either by standing on the command point or bringing a flag to the command point. Teams are awarded points at set intervals for each command point they control.
- Attack and Defend
Attack and Defend maps, a variation of Control Point maps, features one team trying to capture several command points in sequence while the other team defends each command point from capture.
Escort maps, the players are split into three teams – a single VIP, the VIP's Bodyguards, and a group of Assassins. The goal of Escort maps is for the Bodyguards to escort the VIP to a given point on the map while the Assassins attempt to kill the VIP before he gets there.
Deathmatch maps can be obtained by simply copying Half-Life Deathmatch maps to Team Fortress Classic's map folder. Though this is not fully supported, all maps should fully function as a four-team Deathmatch map.
In addition to the official game modes released by Valve, community-made maps can create new modes of play. For example, Murderball features a King of the Hill-style game featuring a common ball in which points are tabulated by keeping the ball for as long as possible while the three other teams try to take it from the player.
In Team Fortress Classic, a player can choose to play as one of nine standard classes. Each class comes equipped with at least one weapon unique to that class, and often a secondary weapon which may be common across multiple classes (typically a shotgun or nailgun). Additionally, each class gets a melee weapon (all classes but the Spy and Engineer wield a crowbar, an homage to Valve's game Half-Life). Finally, each player carries grenades; the effects of grenades vary, depending on the player's class.
In Escort game modes, a player may also choose to play as the Civilian class, which is armed only with an umbrella, no armor and very little health. Civilians are typically escorted and protected by the rest of the team.
The Scout is the fastest class in the game, but is unable to deal much damage in return. The Scout is armed with a nailgun as well as being able to use caltrops and concussion grenades to slow down and confuse opponents. The Sniper class is armed with a high-powered sniper rifle, and can be used to attack enemies from distant positions. The Soldier class is significantly slower than Snipers and Scouts, but possesses better armor and is armed with a rocket launcher that allows him to rocket jump, along with combat shotguns as sidearms for backup. Rocket jumping, while effective for moving about the battlefield, also significantly damages the soldier. Soldiers can also make use of nail bombs to cause more damage within close quarters. The Demoman class is armed with a grenade launcher for indirect fire onto enemy positions, and a Pipe Bomb launcher for booby trapping places as well as being equipped with a demolition pack capable of opening or closing certain routes on some levels.
The Medic class is equipped with a super nail gun, concussion grenades and a medical kit that can be used either to heal teammates or expose opponents to a contagious infection that drains health. The Heavy Weapons class is armed with a powerful minigun, and can sustain more damage than any other class. However, the Heavy is significantly slower than other classes. The Pyro Class is equipped with a flamethrower and an incendiary rocket launcher, both of which can set enemies on fire. Pyros also carry several napalm grenades for the same purpose. The Spy class differs significantly in style from other classes, as he can disguise himself to look like any other class on either side. The Spy is equipped with a knife to kill enemy players in one hit by stabbing them in the back as well as a tranquilizer gun to slow down opponents and hallucination gas to confuse them. Spies also possess the ability to feign death, allowing them to use their backstab ability more effectively. The Engineer class builds structures to support their team, such as sentry guns to defend key points, ammunition dispensers and teleporters. Engineers have the ability to replenish a teammates armour by tapping them with their spanner. In addition, the Engineer is armed with EMP grenades that detonates any explosive ammunition within its range, as well as a shotgun for backup.
Team Fortress was originally a 1996 QuakeWorld modification. Its developers were working on a follow up stand-alone version that they planned to call Team Fortress 2 when the team was hired by Valve Software to write a port of Team Fortress as a mod for Valve's game Half-Life. The original game designers were hired by Valve, and the mod was released as Team Fortress Classic by Valve in April of 1999.
Valve significantly updated the game over time, tweaking the game's networking code, play balance and user interface, and adding maps and game modes. In 2003, Team Fortress Classic was released as a stand-alone game on Valve's Steam system.
After a six-year delay, Team Fortress 2 was released in 2007.
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