Team Fortress 2's meet your match artwork

If you haven't played Team Fortress 2 the past few weeks you should consider yourself extremely lucky since the Meet your Match update brought in not just the Competitive Mode, but a whole slew of bugs and poorly thought out design choices as well. Casual Matchmaking, the bread and butter for the wast majority of TF2's playerbase, was unfortunately hit by the majority of these issues as it got forcibly transformed into a completely serious, almost competitive mode with long queue times, punishments for leaving in the middle of a match, and worst of all, no autobalance.

As you can imagine, the community was less than pleased, but thankfully Valve have broken their vow of silence and have recently corrected the majority of these issues and brought back random, chaotic fun into Team Fortress 2, a game where the primary objective is to acquire the most outlandishly stupid hat. You can read the full change log over at the TF2 blog, but here's the short version:

You are now able to specify the map you would like to play when using the Casual Matchmaking, penalties for abandoning casual matches have been completely removed, and best of all, queue times have been greatly reduced across the board so you won't have to spend 10 minutes waiting to join a half-abandoned server.

On the other hand, abandons in Competitive Play are now penalized quite harshly, with "really long ban times" reserved for serial abandoners. Furthermore, Valve is currently looking into several options to offset the impact abandons have on games currently in-progress, though no details have been shared just yet.

And finally, the TF2 team is currently working on correcting a matchmaking quirk that causes people in lower population regions to constantly get matched into servers with high ping. While no solution is available right now, they are considering starting up servers with less than 24 players and then filling them up as the game goes on, rather than just stick everyone in a matchmaking queue and hope 23 other people are playing at 5AM in that region.

If you were waiting for this whole mess to blow over before starting up TF2 again, now would be the time to return since the premier hat-wearing simulator is once again an actually enjoyable game to play.

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