Team Fortress 2, it's fair to say, is getting on a bit. The 14-year-old game remains incredibly popular on Steam, but over the past year it's hit the headlines for the wrong reasons, with bot problems that show no sign of disappearing. (Although we got to witness players conga-ing their way past the bots, at least.)
In any case, it seems the community has finally taken it upon themselves to give Team Fortress 2 a refresh, as a group of modders called Amper Software has started recreating the game in Garry's Mod spiritual successor s&box. The reason for this: they wondered what Team Fortress 2 would look like in Valve's newest engine, Source 2.
"Ever since Source 2 was first mentioned publicly as an engine that Valve was working on, a lot of people in the Team Fortress 2 community have started asking the question: if Valve ever ports TF2 to Source 2, what would it look like? How different gameplay would be? And would TF2 even feel the same?," the team explained in a blog post. "...s&box, the spiritual successor of Garry's Mod made on the Source 2 engine, has been released as part of a dev preview to a group of community members, including ourselves. It, pretty much, like Garry's Mod itself, allows you to build whatever you want using the toolset that it provides. So we've decided to not lose that chance."
The team currently has over 20 volunteers helping out, and has already started implementing significant portions of TF2 in s&box. As explained in their blog post, the team wants to "...rebuild Team Fortress 2 mechanics, port all the assets from the base game to the new engine and see how different it can look and feel from the original game." So far they've shown off their work recreating Sniper, Demoman, Scout, Pyro and Soldier, along with a "new and improved HUD".
They've also been hard at work porting assets and maps into Source 2, and it certainly doesn't seem to be a simple process. Porting Arena map Well, for instance, required the rebuilding of certain sections of the map, along with the creation of new textures and meshes. Producer and environment artist Kaya has also made a "simple original test map" with a spytech theme, which has already been released on s&box.
It's worth noting TF:S2 is still in the early stages of development, however, and the team is fully aware that this project is going to be demanding.
"This project is a huge undertaking, we would have to consider all nitpicks of TF2 gameplay, try to rebuild every single mechanic to feel similar to the base game, but with enough dedication, I believe that we can do it," said producer and lead programmer Moonly Days.
The work done so far looks fantastic, and while the project is far from completion, it seems like the team is pretty organised - so I have high hopes for this one. If you think you can help the team out, Amper Software's website has an application form here - and you can follow the team's progress on the TF:S2 Twitter account.