Ok, so I mean the best game of all-time for me and not necessarily for everyone. I just put that as the title to get more people to click on my blog and get pissed.
1) Team Play
I’m a huge lover of sports. I grew up playing many different sports over a number of years, especially team-oriented sports such as football. As a result, I’m a big team guy. I’m the guy in an MMO that will gladly play the healer or support class simply because I get a kick out of supporting my teammates and making them better and stronger than they would have been otherwise.
With that said, NO GAME forces you and your team to play as team oriented as Team Fortress 2. I have been addicted to many online FPS over the years: Call of Duty 4, Halo 3, the Quake and Battlefield series…but nothing, at least that I’ve played, pulls off the team concept better.
First, each class has significant strengths and weaknesses.
Each class has something(s) that they’re really, really good at and something(s) that they’re really, really bad at. Nobody cares about your standard death match in TF2. Why? The classes are balanced in such a way that certain classes would get pummeled in a standard death match format because of their strengths and weaknesses.
Second, most of the maps are small and funnel the teams to each other. Imagine a football field: It’s defined as 100 yards in length and about 53 yards wide.
There’s very little room to run away from the opposing team. Sure, there are nooks and crannies that the opposing team can try to strategize around and slip through, but basically it’s one team trying to push against the other team.
Third, the best TF2 maps/modes, in my opinion, are the ones that has one team act as the offense and one team act as the defense. There’s nothing in gaming that I’ve experienced that is more intense then when there’s 60 seconds left and one team is trying desperately to stop the other team from capturing the point.
Most other online FPS I’ve played don’t really play with this team concept. Sure, you can choose “Team Deathmatch” or “Team Whatever” in a game like Call of Duty 4 or Halo 3, but there’s not much of a team aspect. Everyone just kind of runs off on their own, typically, and tries to get the most kills on the map. Not so with TF2.
2) Class variety = Win
Do you suck at FPS? Well, you’re in luck – you can suck at FPS and still be highly effective in TF2. There are some classes that you definitely need FPS skills such as the Demo, Soldier, Scout, and Sniper. However, there are other utility classes that have a tremendous effect on the outcome of a match and utilize very little FPS skill such as the Engineer, Spy, and Medic.
While some hardcore FPS fanatics may mock this and call TF2 a “gamez 4 teh noobz”, TF2 is far from that. While the Engineer, Spy, and Medic don’t require specific FPS skills, they do DEFINITELY require skill.
If you play as an Engineer, it’s all about strategy and where you place your sentry. Put it in the right place (and watch out for those nasty spies) and you’ll be a very though line of defense for your team. Get your teleporters up in strategic locations and your team will love you.
Spies are a class that you’ll either suck at or be one of the most valuable players on your team. Taking down Engineers and their sentries/dispensers/teleporters is an art only the most skillful can excel at. And there’s no bigger hard-on than backstabbing an uber-charged Medic.
Medics are the lifeblood of your team, especially on offense. If you don’t have enough medics on your team then you, most likely, will not win. Whether or not you win in points as a medic, you will be your teams MVP.
3) Balance is the key to life
With games in the MMO and fighting genres struggling to balance each class, TF2 is one of the most perfectly balanced games I’ve ever played.
Each class has a certain role that they need to fill. Rarely is it a good idea to have a team that doesn’t have at least one of each class. Spies will hate Pyros, Engineers will hate Spies, and everyone will hate the well-positioned Engineer. It plays a little like paper-rock-scissor, but with your skill definitely deciding the outcome.
Some people knock TF2’s Pixar-like graphics. I think these people are retards. First, because the graphics tie in to TF2’s sense of humor, but even more importantly because 5-10 years from now when we all think that Call of Duty 4 and Halo 3 look like crap, we’ll still think that TF2 looks solid because of the graphical style that they chose.
You can never appreciate how difficult it is for game creators to put a great sense of humor into a game. It is a very difficult thing for game creators to pull off and something that I see failed time and time again.
TF2’s humor has some of the best one-liners that you’ll be repeating to your friends for months. I won’t even bother trying to type out a bad rendition of some of the lines since you need an understanding of the TF2 world and voices to know why it’s so hilarious…but hilarious it absolutely is.
Besides, any game that has gamers who are weird enough to dress up like them has to be awesome.
GamesBeat 2014 — VentureBeat’s sixth annual event on disruption in the video game market — is coming up on Sept 15-16 in San Francisco. Purchase one of the first 50 tickets and save $400!