It’s been a good long while since Robotic Boogaloo, the first (and thus far only) community-created update, and I’ve been thinking about it lately. The update never sat well with me and even if we don’t all agree that the update wasn’t that great, we should all acknowledge it wasn’t well-received. But I don’t feel that should be the end of community-created updates. I think the TF2 community can and does do better. If we want community updates to be a thing that people celebrate on the same level as normal Valve updates, though, they need to BE on the same level as a Valve update, as opposed to being a thing of people seeing one is out and thinking “Aw fuck, hat glurge”. The next one, if there is a next one, is gonna have to really knock it out of the park to prove this is a thing worth doing on the regular.
So maybe you are like me and you have 50+ games on your Steam account and you are using the rest of Steam’s functionality enough that you want to launch all of your games from Steam’s neatly organized and alphabetized library. Or maybe (also like me) you just think it’s fun to let your friends know when you’re playing 5 Days a Fuckfest or Tales of Game’s Studios Presents Chef Boyardee’s Barkley, Shut Up & Jam: Gaiden, Chapter 1 of the Hoopz Barkley SaGa.
It’s easy as hell if your game launches with an .exe file, as most games these days do. But what about older shit? Or ROM dumps? Steam doesn’t permit importing of most proprietary formats just by the usual way, nor links to webpages. As such, how to launch browser games or anything in an emulator, especially the clusterfucks that are DOS-based games, is not something readily obvious in Steam.
But you can do it and here is how.
So maybe you, like me, are interested in making an item for Team Fortress 2. And maybe you’re new to modelling so you want to look at TF2 models in, say, Blender (though this will get you far enough if you’re using something else). With the new SteamPipe content distribution system, though, shit’s all hidden and confusing now ’cause they converted all the .gcf files into .vpk’s. Even if you’ve extracted stuff from TF2 before, maybe you’re having a hard time now. All the tutorials for how to do this are outdated and I can’t be the only dumbass who couldn’t figure this out in two minutes, so I am gonna put this here for anyone who needs it.