yet it's consistently the third most played game on steam.There is room for conpetitive to grow.
well free2play is going to make that a lot higher as well, tf2 has been and always will be a solid game. the one thing people forget (or don't know at all) is that TFC the origin of your beloved tf2 never took off in a major way. it was always overshadowed by games like UT, quake, cs etc. when fps games were in their prime but TFC was still great regardless of it lacking success. in a way you can say it missed its window.
long story short yeah tf2 is way more popular then tfc ever was but the main reason why comp tf2 exists is because of the comp community and esea's support. i honestly doubt valve ever predicted oh so long ago that tf2 would become a major cash cow solely from cosmetic items. why worry about anything else when one person can buy enough keys which is the equivalent to paying for the game multiple times over.
i don't see them shifting focus away from that now or anytime soon. if you love a game just play it but comp tf2 growing in a big way is and always will be a pipe dream. yeah i know it sucks hearing that but its the truth