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While Team Fortress 2 fans are now able to check out the game's five previous Halloween events with "Scream Fortress Classic", Counter-Strike: Global Offensive players can already get started with this year's festivities with the recently released "Halloween Mask-erade" update.
As the name and the linked image suggest, this year's CS:GO Halloween update focuses on the temporary introduction of themed masks. Each player will now be randomly assigned one of a number of masks at the beginning of a round, with designs ranging from paper masks featuring the faces of Team Fortress 2's cast, pumpkins, coloured animal disguises, and even a few clown designs more commonly seen covering the mugs of Payday: The Heist's cast.
Don't fret, however, as masks are not classified as cosmetic items and cannot be manually equipped, meaning they will only last as long as this year's Halloween update (or as long as a server has the new "sv_holiday_mode" command set to 1).
Lucky players (or unlucky, depending how you look at it) may be able to spot the ghostly figures of fallen teammates during freeze cameras after being killed, while shooting chickens will now cause them to be slowly resurrected from "Chicken Hell" as green zombies that will continue to shuffle around the battlefield before being killed once more.
Numerous other changes for Mirage and Inferno were also included with this week's update, so be sure to check out the full changelog if you're interested in finding out more about where that pesky boiler has run off to.
While Half-Life is still one franchise Valve appears unwilling or unprepared to create an official comic series for, it would seem members of the community are jumping the gun and creating their own. Created by ex-ValveTime staff members Ross Gardner and Michael Pelletier, the recently announced "Half-Life: A Place in the West" takes place in the early few years following the Resonance Cascade and subsequent destruction of Black Mesa, placing it in the relatively unexplored period of time between both Half-Life and Half-Life 2.
The relatively brief synopsis provided on the website homepage describes how the six-part comic series will follow three individuals who are "drawn to a strange, half-destroyed American city called Franklin", meaning that, while the story is set in the same fictional universe as the games we know and love, it will likely not feature any established characters or locations.
Unlike most community comics, A Place in the West was not created in Garry's Mod or the Source Filmmaker, instead adopting a hand-drawn art style similar to those used in Valve's own comic series. The series has been in production since May 2014 after originally being conceived in late 2013, and we've been told that each individual issue will feature around 30-40 pages released across six parts over a number months, reaching well into 2015.
Following Portents", feature no dialogue or any indication about the kind of writing we can expect from the rest of the series, we shouldn't have to wait all that long to find out given the next part is due out in just under two weeks on Monday, November 3rd 2014. Given the relative lack of Half-Life news or content these past few years and with the tenth anniversary of Half-Life 2 coming up in just under a month, conditions for releasing this comic series could hardly be more ideal!
There wasn't a whole lot of Valve news this week, but what little we did get was extremely interesting! Talking points from the past week include the release of Dota 2's 6.82c balance patch, the continued pretty-fication of Team Fortress 2's Asteroid, and Steam's "Free Weekend Weekend" event, among others!
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While it isn't quite a Steam seasonal sale, this weekend will see Valve host the largest "Free Weekend" event in the history of the platform. Starting at 10am PST on October 16th 2014, 10 big-name titles will be made available to play free of charge for duration of the weekend, during which the games will also feature "tremendous savings" should you want to purchase them for later play.
The ten featured games include:
- Blade Symphony
- Company of Heroes 2
- Don't Starve
- Grid 2
- Injustice: Gods Among Us
- Killing Floor
- Payday 2
- Trine 2
- XCOM: Enemy Unknown
For this episode of ValveTime Database, we're going to be investigating, analysing, and... laughing at one of Half-Life's least-known projects, the official/unofficial promotional film, Half-Life: Uplink!
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