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Team Fortress 2 Now Literally Drowning In Cross-Game Promotions – Secret Promo Items Found In New Game Update

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Any dedicated TF2 fan who once swore to follow each and every cross-game TF2 item promotion is now starting to regret his decision. Over the past year, Valve has been cranking the number of promos to unbelievable levels.

But what makes this occasion so special?

Team Fortress 2 Now Literally Drowning In Cross-Game Promotions – Secret Promo Items Found In New Game Update

First off, let’s check out the recent promos, just to catch up and remind any folks who might have missed them. The latest game from renowned game designer Eric Chahi (the man behind the incredible Another World), From Dust, has just had a cross-game promotion with TF2. Pre-purchasing From Dust on Steam before its release date on the 17th of August will get you a lovely Genuine Mask of the Shaman.

The next recent TF2 promo is for Red Orchestra 2, to be more precise, its Digital Deluxe Edition. Buying it on the 30th of August will get you two TF2 hats: the Stahlhelm and the Pilotka. Pre-purchasing it before its release date will score you these two hats, in Vintage quality. Currently, all awarded hats are Genuine quality only. Could be an intentional effect, could be a mix-up. Now, what I’m really hoping for is that the quality will actually be “Vintage Genuine”. And Valve could start using this for all their promos – pre-purchasing would get you Vintage Genuine and purchasing would get you plain Genuine. Would certainly work better than the current system. Keep in mind that these are only available for the Digital Deluxe Edition. The standard edition offers no bonuses whatsoever, though users who also own the original Red Orchestra will be awarded a number of in-game RO2 items and -10% off on their RO2 purchase.

But that’s not all. In yesterday’s game update, fans found files for a number of new promotional items: the Original, a rocket launcher inspired by Quake 1’s rocket launcher, which also made an appearance in the original Team Fortress and Deathmatch Classic. No clue as to how this one could be distributed, unless id happens to announce Quake 5 any time soon. Perhaps as part of a deal for the Quake anthology. Next is the Tamrielic Relic, a steel helmet with two ram horns on each side, from The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. Then there’s the Anger, a hood with a menacing brown veil, from Brink. We’ve also got the PIP-Boy, to be more precise, the 3000A model, from Fallout 3. This is a Misc item for the Engineer. It even changes the style of his pop-up HUD when using his PDA, though the Engineer doesn’t actually bring the PIP-Boy up to his eyes instead of the PDA. And last, but not least is the Wingstick, another Misc item for the Engineer, taken from the game RAGE.

So what do all of these games have in common? They’re all produced by parent company ZeniMax Media, which was founded by Bethesda founder Christopher Weaver and Robert Altman. As such, ZeniMax owns Bethesda, and they acquired id Software in June of 2009. So what could all these items be for? Well, the most straight-forward hypothesis is that they’re all for separate titles, although it is possible that items these may be offered as part of some sort of QuakeCon game pack. Why QuakeCon, you ask? Why, it starts today! Who knows what id and ZeniMax will unveil during QuakeCon?

All we do know is our wallets will most certainly not be pleased.


  1. This update broke the TF2.
    *Calls David for help*
    Never mind.

  2. I really want the Original! I’m a huge quake fan and I’m mostly soldier so this will be perfect!

  3. It’s quite genius, advertising other games through items in-game while/for keeping the game free.

  4. Bethesda Softworks promotion. They have Quake, RAGE, Fallout and TES.

  5. Yeah, I got a little carried away, but I was responding to the broadly negative tone of the blog post.

    • Broadly negative? The only parts of the article that could be interpreted in any way as negative were the opening paragraph and the final line, and even that would be a stretch. The final line was a joke, and I don’t believe the opening paragraph could really be considered negative.

  6. Well I can live with the promotions…
    I just want that sweet rocket launcher to be available through drops.

  7. I totally agree with WeakLeminDrink! This is not meant for players who don’t want the game, it’s meant for players who are planning on buying the game to be further enticed to purchase it. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to buy the Red Orchestra 2 deluxe edition, but now I am certain because I love the new hats! I fear the TF2 community has become spoiled beyond belief, so much to the point that players are simply waiting for an opportunity to complain. We should look at all the FREE dlc’s VALVe has given us, and all the hours we’ve played with this wonderful game. I can’t even imagine the TF2 community placed into another developer’s hands. Think about how they would behave with Capcom’s SUPER or ULTIMATE fighter expansions, and their $5 skins for characters!

    • This is very true, the way Valve provide content to the community (especially with TF2) is superb, and it always has been. Sure, they’ve created a way to make more money out of the game but while always allowing game changing items to be available for free by playing. I am happy buy the odd key and weapon I really want, because they’ve done nothing to screw me over. There’s immense goodwill between us and Valve, and it’s to everyone’s benefit.

      Even if you would never want to buy a game with promotional items, you will almost certainly be able to get it by other means down the line, especially if it’s a weapon. Some hats are locked to certain promotion, but… they’re hats, it doesn’t matter a jot. If people get genuinely upset about hats, then, I say again, it’s not Valve with the problem.

  8. I really like The Original.

  9. I find it hard to get annoyed by these cross promotions, for a number of reasons. For a start, they almost always become available in Drops and Crafting soon after release and they never give any sort of advantage to the game. And they’re mostly cool (especially these).

    Sure the net result is some people will feel compelled to buy games just for these items, but if they don’t actually want the game they’re buying then it is very much their problem and no one else’s. To get hung up about item qualities is equally bizarre behaviour, and not the basis for any valid criticism.

    I treat these things as a nice bonus when buying games I was going to anyway. I will be buying Skyrim, but I’m unlikely to buy anything that will get me the Original. I look forward to working towards crafting it.

    If anyone’s wallet is not pleased by this, then it’s certainly not Valve it should be angry with. It’s the person whose pocket it lives.

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