Steam To Start Hosting Mods

By John Walker on September 29th, 2008 at 9:36 pm.

From DIPRIP.

Valve loves them some modders. In fact, a significant proportion of their employees come from modding backgrounds – it’s an area they take incredibly seriously, as a source for enormous talent. This goes a step further this Thursday, as Valve begins to host selected mods on Steam.

“As a part of our continuing efforts to support the MOD community, we will begin hosting selected MODs directly on Steam starting next week. The first five MODs to ship on steam will be Age of Chivalry, D.I.P.R.I.P., Insurgency, Synergy, and Zombie Panic. As always, owners of any Source game will be able to download and play all of these MODs for free.”

In fact there are ten mods in the launch list, although it’s not known when they’ll all become available for download. They be: Fortress Forever, Empires Mod, D.I.P.R.I.P., Age of Chivalry, Zombie Panic: Source, INSURGENCY, Riot Act, Revolt: The Decimation, Awakening and Eternal Silence.

It’s a fine collection, showcasing some of the best amateur talent in the Source modding community. And it finally puts to rest the complete nonsense a few like to put about claiming Valve doesn’t support modding teams. Fortress Forever and Zombie Panic: Source being everyone’s favourites for conspiracy theories, and both appearing on the list. Valve says,

“We’re excited to see MOD developers get wider recognition for the hard work they have done, and we hope to support more MOD teams in the future.”

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48 Comments »

  1. Saflo says:

    Curious that MINERVA isn’t on there.

    I wonder if they’ll end up hosting Black Mesa, since it was born out of open disappointment with a Valve product.

  2. Downloads_Plz says:

    Huge kudos to Valve for this.

    Hopefully it will encourage mod developers to work even harder in hopes of getting their work recognized, which will only lead to better experiences for everyone involved. Except for the modders themselves, who will now likely dump even more time into their games, but it’s not like they’re actually human beings anyway, so it’s all good.

  3. Jonas says:

    Alright! Wonder what it’ll take to get a non-HL mod on there. I guess they probably won’t do that – it’s a bit too much to ask for them to start supporting other companies’ mod communities, eh? Alas, t’would be grand to see my mod on there :)

  4. scott says:

    Also wondering why Minerva isn’t on there ….

  5. Pavel says:

    Another one wondering about Minerva…and Black Mesa Source. Honestly, I am looking forward to playing BMS more than Episode 3.

  6. Theory says:

    Curious that MINERVA isn’t on there.

    They don’t seem to be handling single-player mods yet.

  7. Trestkon says:

    I agree, Jonas, non-HL mod support would be most excellent :-D

  8. Chris R says:

    Zombie Panic Source has been satisfying my craving for Left4Dead… but only just. If anything it actually makes me want L4D even more than before.

    I’ll have to check out Fortress Forever… sounds interesting. Whats it about?

  9. Theory says:

    It’s a TFC clone, TFC being the precursor to TF2.

  10. Alex says:

    It’s the mod team’s port of Team Fortress Classic to Source, instead of the departure Valve took in making TF2.

  11. Blake says:

    I’m surprised they chose FF, to be honest. It’s not a very good mod.

  12. Fitzcarraldo says:

    Which capitalist exploiter corp wouldn’t say a hearty “YES” to the free work hours from modders?

    LOL even with all the revenue from the “STEAM” cancer cartel they couldn’t buy the love :)

    RPS team, they are really giving you payola don’t they?

    ::: <—- this is a stretched colon

  13. Nimic says:

    Is Fortress Forever any good? I haven’t actually tried it, but I can’t imagine it could possibly be any better than Team Fortress 2.

  14. Saflo says:

    The fellow two boxes above you says it isn’t good. Also, it’s scientifically impossible for anything to be better than Team Fortress 2.

  15. Fumarole says:

    I recommend DIPRIP, it’s quite the fun vehicle-based deathmatch. Great for LANing.

  16. Colinmarc says:

    Ditto on Minerva. They even hired the modder, in that situation. Go Valve!

  17. Bob says:

    Uhm, those ten mods listed are just the last mods that have been added to Steam’s “Third Party Mod” list. Minerva isn’t there because it was added to Steam (as a link) way before that.

  18. The Hammer says:

    Hell, it’s about time!

  19. AlexW says:

    If Valve do put Fortress Forever up for download over Steam, that’ll reopen the discussion of whether or not they might put Black Mesa up there once it’s finished, since previously the main argument was that the IP it uses isn’t its own. Fortress Forever would neatly shred that argument, and since a mod needing CS:S isn’t exactly a downside for Valve the biggest remaining argument against it is download size – something Valve have gotten pretty good at, really.

    Now for the quintessential Dystopia pimp: Dystopia Dystopia Dystopia Dystopia Dystopia. Damn it would be nice to see an Orange Box engine, Steamworks-integrated Dystopia v2 on Steam eventually. Though that’ll require Valve to first update the Dys mod page on Steam from its pre-v1 state.

  20. Plopsworth says:

    Fistful of Frags is a unique mod. Spaghetti-western inspired objective based teamplay. Unique rewarding scoring where you, for instance, get more points for kills using the more difficult weapons (tomahawk, bow, colt revolver, throwing knife) instead of the more expensive and robust ones (shotgun, peacemaker, Sharps Buffalo-rifle) and where hits are rewarded (so no kill-stealing). Very polished work.

    Zombie Panic is incredibly fun with people communicating and using mics. Plenty of scheming and plotting with the barricades. One of the rare games were getting killed is very fun. It’s not as much scary as it is tense and strangely goofy. You can also induce The Thing-esque paranoia amongst the survivors if you see that one of them is infected and about to turn zombie within a minute. “Hee hee I wouldn’t stand so close to him if I were you” “No, the one on the right.” “No, not your right. My right- OOPS too late”, intermingled with protests of “No, I’m at 100% health, it’s not me”.

    Other fun situations: A lone zombie stumbling upon four survivors hiding underground. Everyone turns around and empties their firearms into the shambling creature. Yes, I know ragdolls are old-hat. I agree, but the corpse went flying out into the hallway from the lead poisoning it received. Two seconds of silence, then spontaneous nervous laughter across the voice-chat as everyone reloads. As they are mirthfully watching their slow reloading animations start the three other zombies waiting around the corner take their cue and decide to make their entrance.

    Lots of fun. I mean, one of the melee weapons is a Microsoft Natural Keyboard. You know those that look like they’ve been left outside in the sun for too long. It also includes the strange phenomenon of

  21. Down Rodeo says:

    FF is… OK. Some bits are a tad annoying, and it plays very much like TFC, but there are some nice touches – like the posters advertising the various classes. “Don’t take candy from just anyone” warns against the spy, but there are more. Rather funny ones too.

    Then, criticism. I am not very keen on the classes not feeling as “pure” as TF2′s and Hunted games very often end up in a dead VIP but I will say that there’s been a lot of work on this mod. Certain bits are very polished and I think that it is a fairly impressive piece of work.

    Oh, grenades. Oh dear. Still horrible.

    I think I’ll have to check out the rest of the mods there (also having played MINERVA recently I am one of those who believes it to be fantastic. The design is brilliant; I really like how he makes use of the full volume in the island. The writing has also secured the A.I. – whose name I cannot remember – as another of my favourites).

  22. Shadowmancer says:

    Old news this has been on the interwebs for 2 months now even the mods were named back then.

  23. MindBrain says:

    This should be cool. I tried the D.I.P.R.I.P mod demo when it came out and it was great. Started lacking players though and been waiting for an update. Maybe with this it will come back in force.

  24. Valarauka says:

    Mail Order Daiquiries?
    Massively Obese Dames?
    Magical Orange Dobermans?
    The word “mod” isn’t an acronym, Valve, so for the love of all that is holy stop capitalizing it!

  25. spd from Russia says:

    steam is a bloatware drm thing I dont need!

  26. Frank says:

    I suppose they’re leaving out Minerva and other SP games because they don’t benefit much from Steamworks… They really ought to have Dystopia in there, though. Or just, y’know, hire the Dystopia team.
    In other news: the next Prince of Persia will be on Steam! http://store.steampowered.com/app/5094/

  27. U.N.I.T.Y. says:

    For everyone who keeps asking why Minerva’s not in that list… it’s because it’s already being hosted. Steam and mods isn’t new in that they’ve already been hosting some for a while now, but they haven’t really advertised it, and they’re mostly older mods.

  28. caesarbear says:

    Needs Dystopia, Fistfull of Frags, Zombie Master, good old Battlegrounds…

    My god, they left off PVK2?!?!? What kind of list of mods is this?

    And no, I don’t believe any mod has been hosted by steam before. They are advertised, linked and recognized by Steam, but you cannot download any of them as far as I know. Incorporating mods into the Steam download and update system is a very big step.

  29. monkeymonster says:

    Nobody’s mentioned Insurgency… Awesome mod with a very recent massive update to bring modern warfare into the hl2 engine. Its going to the way of dod and I wouldn’t be surprised if its taken on by steam in the future.

  30. Dr. Quincy says:

    Where’s HL2 CTF? Bah!

  31. The Hammer says:

    Where’s HL2 CTF? Bah!

    Man, you are so right! I mean, as far as I know, it’s the only mod where the developers have actually had an arranged battle with Valve.

    I had so many good times playing that.

  32. Dr. Quincy says:

    Its very polished too. I rather wish it was made official, with Valve-supported stat tracking and the like.

  33. Smurfy says:

    I can’t wait :D

    I hope we see Zombie Master on there soon.

  34. MarvintheParanoidAndroid says:

    /me pgups Dystopia. I mean seriously, the team (from Australia) even got invited to Valve’s offices!

    But still, good news in general, even if it is just going to be to Valve’s advantage for all the modders to stress-test the system. Hopefully more mods will be added after the first batch sorts out whatever kinks exist, there’s a good few deserving and ambitious projects out there.

  35. Tei says:

    Why so late Valve? CTF, Counter-Strike, TeamFortress are mods. Why this hate to modders you make then wait.. how much? 3 years? to be able to get some hosting on autoinstalling features on Valve?
    I have no idea why you don’t have provide a standard or something, maybe something like the .umod capability of Unreal, to make installing mods in Steam a single click task.
    Is beyond me.
    I see you provide a gazillion tools, and enormeous support, so.. why no hosting? do you want lots of people making mods but no one downloading these mods?

    WHY SOO LATE!?

  36. malkav11 says:

    About time. They have some of the most modded games around, but the (sometimes woefully outdated) description and link to mod website mods have been receiving is inadequate. Especially when they *look* like they’ve gotten the full Steam treatment, even though they haven’t.

  37. KindredPhantom says:

    Shame they never approached Team Dystopia, Dystopia mod with this offer since it is one of the oldest hl2 modifications being released first way back on ’05, the original team were even invited over to valve were they helped them out with feedback on the game and good design tips (notice that the player models have shapes that standout and are recognized like TF2 characters). A mod that I would love to see some coverage of on RPS; I am willing to pay for all members of the RPS teams to have supporters status and to take part in the private supporter testing that is happening on Dystopia mod now. Just e-mail me and I’ll make it happen!
    The hidden source is also an old mod that is pretty polished and I am surprised is not on the list. I wonder on what basis they chose the mods since some of the mods having only one or two servers with very few people playing. I hope they do extend the offer to other mods.

  38. KindredPhantom says:

    Two mods have announced that they are to have their future version released on steam. Pirates Vikings and Knights 2 and Eternal Silence.

  39. KubeDawg says:

    I’m certainly glad to see Valve step up to the plate and offer something to these 3rd party mods that might not be available without Steamworks. I’m even more happy to see Fortress Forever mentioned as it’s a very fun mod to play, similar to TFC, but is more fast paced as well as polished. Certainly a great alternative to TF2 for those who dislike the direction it branched to from TFC. The development team for Fortress Forever have made some incredible improvements since it’s original release, and from what I hear, FF’s future can only get better.

  40. KindredPhantom says:

    Was that a comment or an advertisement for Fortress Forever KubeDawg?

  41. Smellycat says:

    I think it’s called a ‘defence’, seen as he be just one of us plebs and seen as so many people appear to under appreciate the amount of work that has actually gone into FF. Sure, maybe it’s not your thing, but there’s been an awful lot of love, sweat and tears from a large number of devs that’s resulted in the production of said mod.

    However, the fact that there’s sign of further mods being added to steamworks is awesome, allowing the average lazy gamer like me to access a number of good games that I otherwise wouldn’t.

    Nice.

  42. KindredPhantom says:

    I understand how much work and dedication goes into creating a mod. I test the source mod Dystopia and i get to see how much time the developers put into creating and perfecting the mod.

    All the source mods deserve to have steamworks it puts them on a level footing and makes that easier for them to be download and updated.

  43. AboveAgreed^^ says:

    I agree whith the guys post above^^

  44. zarrafustrah says:

    Whan will the final three on the list be hosted on Steam? I hate seeing that “Third Party Mod” entry still listed when they’ve been advertised for months now…

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