Viewfinder

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The Viewfinder is an experimental primary weapon for the Sniper that was being play-tested by Valve. The existence of this weapon was first discovered in the form of VTF filename strings found in the texture_preload_list.txt file that had been added to the game as part of the October 28, 2015 Patch;

  • models/workshop/weapons/c_models/c_sniperrifle_tv/c_sniperrifle_tv_blue
  • models/workshop/weapons/c_models/c_sniperrifle_tv/c_sniperrifle_tv_red

Almost two years later exactly (off by 8 days), the backpack icons, model and textures for the Viewfinder were accidentally leaked in the Jungle Inferno Update. Based on the patch diff for the update, it appears that when Valve migrated some weapons and cosmetics over to the tf\models\workshop directory from their original directories (tf\models\player\items, tf\models\weapons\c_models), they accidentally migrated some staging build (in-dev) Workshop content they were testing at the time (if not for the past two years) and pushed it in the update.

According to source code[1], the main function of the monitor on the rifle was to highlight enemies with a tf_glow entity. There was an attribute planned for this function called add_sniper_glow_enemies_in_scope[2] in code. However, due to bugs involving it breaking existing tf_glow entities in use which caused issues with some mods and SourceTV clients[3], the idea was put on hold until a fix was implemented.

Update history

October 28, 2015 Patch
  • [Undocumented] VTF filename strings for the Viewfinder were found listed in texture_preload_list.txt, a file that had been added in this update.

October 20, 2017 Patch (Jungle Inferno Update Patch 1)

  • [Undocumented] Files for the Viewfinder were added to the game.

Unknown

  • [Undocumented] Files for the Viewfinder were removed from the game.

Gallery

References

  1. game\client\tf\c_tf_player.cpp:L6415-6452
  2. game\client\tf\c_tf_player.cpp:L6428
  3. game\client\tf\c_tf_player.cpp:L6417-6419