How to Set Up a Surf Server TF2

Written by brad malloy
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How to Set Up a Surf Server TF2
Setting up an enjoyable TF2 surf server will build a strong community. (Ryan McVay/Digital Vision/Getty Images)

Setting up a surf server is a great way to grab and hold on to regular users in the highly competitive TF2 market. TF2 (Team Fortress 2) is a first-person shooter game; surfing is a form of emergent gameplay that replaces traditional game objectives with racing down ramps to simulate real-world surfing. Surf servers rely on a good selection of challenging maps along with some custom environmental settings to stand out in a sea of dedicated servers. Gathering regular players will form a community centred around your server and will let you play with people who are less likely to behave poorly than more casual players; that makes the game more enjoyable for everyone involved.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Play surf maps on other servers and decide which ones are fun. Surf maps are prefixed with the word "surf" and an underscore; for example, "surf_greatriver" is a popular map you may want to try out.

  2. 2

    Upload the maps that you like to the "maps" folder of your server. The map selection will have a large impact on the quality of the server. Consistently challenging and fun maps mean more players.

  3. 3

    Open the "cfg" folder, and edit the "server.cfg" file. Add in the following:

    sv_airaccelerate 100

    mp_disable_respawntimes 1

    The first option makes it possible to surf; the second disables respawn timers, which will mean people can surf without worrying about dying and having to wait.

  4. 4

    Navigate to the "tf" folder and edit "mapcycle.txt" to inlcude only the names of the maps that you want people to play on. If it doesn't exist, create a file with that exact name, with each map name separated by a return.

  5. 5

    Restart the server to initiate the changes you've made. Enjoy your surf server.

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