Valve explains Pyro TF2 updates

The weapons, achievements and maps.

Valve has given more details of what will be in the Pyro update coming to Team Fortress 2 PC this Thursday.

For starters, you can expect a "significant improvement" for the bog-standard flamethrower. Pressing the alternate fire button now produces a gust of compressed air that sends enemies flying and even redirects hostile projectiles.

So yes, you will be able to turn rockets back on their launchers, get blazing victims away from you pronto, and keep enemy medics away from their patients.

The Pyro also gets a trio of weapons to unlock by earning class achievements.

Up first is the Flare Gun, which replaces the shotgun and lets you set your enemies on fire from far away - as long as you can handle the tricky aiming. Useful for dealing with Snipers and Engineers, we're told.

Next is a modified flamethrower called the Backburner. This deals critical hits when ever you toast an enemy who has their back turned on you. It forfeits the compressed blast ability but bumps your health up by fifty points as a trade off.

Last but not least is the Axtinguisher. This is an axe, unsurprisingly, and it performs critical hits on any enemy who is on fire. Chop chop. But it will also be significantly weaker against those not ablaze. Combine with Pyro friend or Flare Gun for massive damage.

In total there will be 35 achievements to unlock, and they vary from finishing off another enemy lit-up by another Pyro, to igniting a Soldier while he's in mid-air after performing a rocket jump.

Head to the official preview of the Pyro changes to see them all.

Alongside the Pyro update this Thursday will be two user-created maps. These are a control point map called Fastlane that has multiple indoor and outdoor routes, and a capture the flag map called Turbine, which is clean and straightforward and easy to learn.

While you're waiting for that patch you can also watch the freshly-released Meet the Sniper video on Eurogamer TV, which er, introduces you to the Sniper class in Team Fortress 2. We rather liked it.

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