Thaw is a multiplayer map for Team Fortress 2, set in and around a mountain shipping outpost, where the last traces of the winter's snow still remain.
It uses a nonstandard gamemode, Attack/Defend Capture The Flag, which challenges the Blu team to bring a single flag pickup to each in a series of control points (in this case three), and hold those points long enough to capture them and move onto the next, while the Red team must prevent them from doing so long enough for the timer to run out. The addition of the flag to Attack/Defend demands additional coordination and teamwork from the Blu team and means the primary defended zone is always shifting as the flag is carried and dropped on its way to its destination. ADCTF usually comes in one of two forms - either Instant-Capture (like HAARP), or Hold-Capture (like Dauphin), and Thaw utilises its Hold-Capture nature to the fullest, challenging the Blu team to not just send a single Scout behind the enemy to capture, but coordinate as an entire team to take command of a point area and keep Red out.
Thaw's first prototype was made within a tight 72 hour period for the 2022 TF2 Summer Jam, and is a very large and detailed map, so required a significant amount of quick design thinking and expertise with the Hammer Editor to translate ideas into reality as quickly as possible. After the Jam ended, Thaw's development continued on an iterative development cycle, utilising controlled playtesting to collect feedback and data with which to improve and balance the map. The map was also featured in the 2022 Summer Jam Showcase.
It is still actively in development, and remains in an Alpha state, not yet artpassed in order to allow for quicker and easier large layout changes.