Erik Wolpaw, who is known for his work on Portal and Half-Life games among other titles, has left Valve. The news first came to light when he updated his Facebook info, and was also confirmed by Marc Laidlaw (who left Valve early last year) in a tweet. “Wolpaw left Valve so I can now insult him freely without damaging the company’s reputation. He’s a comic genius and a true original,” wrote Laidlaw. Some confusion was caused when Wolpaw later tagged Portal co-writer Jay Pinkerton in a Facebook post announcing his departure whereby some believed Pinkerton had resigned as well. However, he clarified that this was not the case. “Last day at Valve!” announced Wolpaw. “People marching their crap out of their office in a box is central theme of 90% of what Pinkerton and I write, and now I’m finally doing it for real,” he added. He will continue to collaborate with Double Fine on Psychonauts 2. [Source: Erik Wolpaw (Facebook) via Tyler McVicker, Marc Laidlaw, ValveTime (Twitter)] READ FULL STORY AT PLAYSTATIONLIFESTYLE!
Counter-Strike players are currently coping with an exploit that allows bots to spam text and partake in games without being kicked. Advertisement The attack allegedly comes from one person who claims to be organizing the hack and bots in a somewhat concentrated effort. The proof comes by way of a wall of text that some bots responsible for the attack are sending out, which proclaim that the exploit’s continued abuse is meant to draw attention to security issues within Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. Valve has issued a statement and a hotfix meant to mitigate the issue, but reports are still coming in of un-kickable cheaters and exploiters. Though community solutions are popping up, the hacker responsible for it has been somewhat adapting, causing confusion and many in forums and subreddits to abstain from logging on altogether. The exploit allows the bots and exploiters to jump into all lobbies, even private ones according to reports. Advertisement It’s a similar exploit to one found a few weeks ago, where typing messages into a lobby allowed users to rank up READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
Video game bugs are like a foul odor. The cause might be some tiny thing, but if you can’t isolate it, it’ll stink up the whole dang place. Such was apparently the case with a Team Fortress 2 bug that took Valve ten years to finally eliminate. Advertisement Here’s how the bug worked: if you joined a server as one of four classes—pyro, demo, engineer, medic, or spy—then switching to scout, heavy, or sniper would mess up your animations and hitbox. So basically, if somebody took a shot at you, there’s a chance it’d miss even though it sure as hell looked like it hit. In a game where The True Measure Of A Man comes from one’s ability to make bullets go into other players’ faces, it was infuriating. This issue had apparently been around since TF2 came out in 2007. Here’s a video of the bug in action, courtesy of sigsegv: Yeah, it’s pretty bad! It’s amazing that this wasn’t taken care of sooner. A recent patch, however, finally took care of it. In Valve’s patch notes, they wrote, “Fixed an animation bug that would cause the client READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
There’s nothing worse than going on a tear in Counter-Strike, only to get gunned down by some asshole who’s spinning around, one-tapping everybody. He’s obviously cheating. Why hasn’t he been caught? According to Valve, it’s complicated, but they’re working on a new system to bust fun-killers. Advertisement First, here’s the reason Valve hasn’t augmented their Overwatch (not to be confused with the game) anti-cheat system—which has qualified players review reports of suspected cheaters after the fact—with auto-detection software for obvious cheats like spinbots: “Some bad news,” said Valve on Reddit. “Any hard-coded detection of spin-botting leads to an arms race with cheat developers–if they can find the edges of the heuristic you’re using to detect the cheat, the problem comes back.” Advertisement Valve’s solution? Machine learning. Reason being, machine learning, unlike other automated solutions, isn’t static. It’s a kind of AI that parses data and, well, learns from it over time, adapting its behaviors in the process. So, why isn’t this system busting every cheater already? Because it’s extremely complicated in a game like Counter-Strike. “The process of parsing, training, and classifying player data READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
“…two months before we shipped Half-Life 1, we lost the whole history; our VSS exploded”, Valve’s Erik Johnson told Gamasutra last week. “And so we had to put that all together off people’s machines. So yeah, we don’t have the history going back to the very start. We have the snapshot from that month.” READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
Reddit user OraCLesofFire submitted an extended GIF of the above documenting just how devastating the recent additions to Dota 2 have made certain heroes’ abilities. One of the biggest changes brought about in the game’s 7.00 patch was introduction of new Talent Trees. Advertisement It shows Phantom Assassin (left) hurling a dagger at Nyx Assassin (right). Phantom’s dagger attack has a chance to deal a critical strike on impact, so every once in a while, especially toward the end of a match when every hero is fully powered, it can deal massive damage and kill unsuspecting enemies with ease from afar. Hence the Dota 2 meme “1 dagger and im die.” But this time, Nyx Assassin completely reversed the result thanks to the game’s recent overhaul making it possible for the hero to reflect double the damage it would have received right back at Phantom Assassin. It’s been cathartic for any one who’s ever played Dota 2 and been slain by the cruel RNG of an incoming dagger to watch, but it’s also a perfect encapsulation of the fundamentally new landscape players have been negotiating since 7.00 was released. READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
Half-Life developer Valve released plenty of games on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, but they haven’t released anything on the current generation of consoles. When asked about this at a recent media roundtable, Valve president Gabe Newell explained the company’s reasoning. Newell said that the company’s disinterest comes from Valve getting “really frustrated working in walled gardens.” Newell cited a poor experience with Apple as to why he prefers to release games on PC, where they don’t have to deal with another company’s closed ecosystem. “There have been cases where we’ve updated products 5-6 times in a day,” Newell told Eurogamer, who attended the media event. “When we did the original iOS of Steam App, right, we shipped it, we got a whole bunch of feedback and like the next day we’re ready to do an update. We weren’t able to get that update out for six months! And we couldn’t find out why they wouldn’t release it! They wouldn’t tell us. This is the life that you have in these environments. And finally they shipped it! And they wouldn’t tell us why they finally shipped it.” The explanation makes sense for Valve, as they are in a position where they simply don’t need…
It’s been roughly half a decade since Valve published a game on home consoles, ending with Counter-Strike: Global Offensive for PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. With the outpouring of success of both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox …Read More The post Gabe Newell Explains Why Valve Is Avoiding Developing Games on Home Consoles by Lou Contaldi appeared first on DualShockers.
For years, Steam Greenlight was the way smaller developers could get their games on the Steam Store without the help of a publisher. Though Greenlight did help smaller games stand out, the system itself wasn’t without its flaws. Now, Greenlight will be taken down and replaced with something called Steam Direct. Here is how Steam Direct will work according to Valve: “We will ask new developers to complete a set of digital paperwork, personal or company verification, and tax documents similar to the process of applying for a bank account. Once set up, developers will pay a recoupable application fee for each new title they wish to distribute, which is intended to decrease the noise in the submission pipeline.” Instead of relying on upvotes, developers will now submit their games directly to the Steam Store. Valve will check to see if game files run correctly and, according to VentureBeat, make sure they are actually games. This sounds like it could lead to a flood of shovelware, but Valve feels confident that its current Steam algorithm can sort the good from the bad. Right now, Valve doesn’t know how much it will charge developers READ FULL STORY AT GEEK!
In a community forum, Valve has revealed that its indie curation program Steam Greenlight will be discontinued and replaced by Steam Direct in spring. …Read More The post Valve Announces Steam Greenlight to be Replaced with Steam Direct Program in Spring by Ryan Meitzler appeared first on DualShockers.
Valve — the company known for games like Portal, Team Fortress, Half-Life and for its software distribution platform Steam — has revealed it is working on multiple virtual reality projects, three to be exact. …Read More The post Valve Is Making Three “Full” VR Games by Tyler Fischer appeared first on DualShockers.
[Image: Kotaku] Not one. Not two. But three. Advertisement “When I say we’re building three games, we’re building three full games, not experiments,” Valve’s Gabe Newell told Eurogamer. “One of the questions you might be asking is ‘Why in the world would you be making hardware?’” Newell continued. “What we can do now is we can be designing hardware at the same time that we’re designing software.” Advertisement Newell explained that since Valve is co-creating a VR system, their approach is similar to how Nintendo makes new hardware and games at the same time. “This is something that Miyamoto has always had. He’s had the ability to think about what the input device is and design a system while he designs games,” said Newell. “Our sense is that this will actually allow us to build much better entertainment experiences for people.” These upcoming VR games are being developed in Valve’s own Source 2 and Unity. READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images “We get really frustrated working in walled gardens,” said Valve’s Gabe Newell. Advertisement During the last gen, Valve released some big hits on consoles (and PC, of course!), such as the Left 4 Dead titles and the Portal games. But this gen, Valve appears to be concentrating on PC. “We love the PC right now,” said Newell. “A lot.” In a roundtable attended by Eurogamer, he explained why. Advertisement “So you try to talk to someone who’s doing product planning on a console about free-to-play games and they say ‘Oh, we’re not sure free-to-play is a good idea’ and you’re like ‘the ship has left.’” As Eurogamer notes, free-to-play Team Fortress 2 has been a massive PC success for Valve. It’s not just the walled-in ecosystems of consoles that Valve isn’t hot on, but also iOS. “There have been cases where we’ve updated products 5-6 times in a day,” Newell said. “When we did the original iOS of Steam App, right, we shipped it, we got a whole bunch of feedback and like the next day we’re ready to do an READ FULL STORY AT KOTAKU!
In a chat with the press in Seattle earlier today, Valve boss Gabe Newell spoke about the effects President Trump’s (overturned) travel ban would have on the company’s employees, along with its esports events. Advertisement As reported by PC Gamer, Newell spoke of Valve employees who would be directly impacted were the ban to ever be brought back. “We have people who work at Valve who can’t go home. They’ve been here for years. They pay taxes. They cheer for New England in the Super Bowl and we try to not hold that against them… But you know, they can’t leave the country. So, like, there’s some event outside the country, and for the first time we say ‘Wait, they can’t go because they can’t get back.’ So that’s a problem, not just these hypothetical future employees but actual Valve employees. So yeah, that’s a concern for us.” Advertisement Newell also spoke of how increased visa scrutiny is a problem for esports, not just Valve’s DOTA 2 efforts but for the scene as a whole, since the upstart industry doesn’t have the popular or legal recognition that athletes and celebrities currently enjoy. “If you’re an opera singer, it’s pretty easy…