Posts Tagged ‘Valve’

Why You – Even You – Should Watch The International Finals

By Alice O'Connor on July 18th, 2014.

Spectacle!

By my watch, the main event of Valve’s $10 million Dota 2 tournament The International kicks off oooooh right about now in front of a sold-out crowd in Seattle. Gabe Newell will take to the stage and someone will yell out something trite about Half-Life 3. You should watch it. Not just because I think Dota 2′s one of the finest video games, but to see Valve’s pageantry. Big-money digital sport competitions in arenas will be A Thing for quite some time, it seems, and The International so far has put on the best show. With decent presenters, a solid between-game show, different ways to watch, and a general hum of excitement, it’s the event other games should be cribbing from.

Look, if you play Dota 2 you probably already know this stuff, but I’ll explain for everyone else.

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Aperture Tag Is A Whole New Portal Game… Without Portals

By Nathan Grayson on July 16th, 2014.

A Portal game without portals? “Why, that’s like removing puppies from the Puppy Bowl,” you might say. “What is even the point?” The point, fellow small dog enthusiast, is paint. Physics-affecting paints (think bouncy gel, etc) were part of Portal 2, but they weren’t the main focus. Paid standalone mod/game Aperture Tag: The Paint Gun Testing Initiative puts them front and center, and it looks like sticky, slippery, hundreds-of-feet-in-the-air-hurtling fun. It’s out now, and a trailer’s below.

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We Aren’t The Champions: Dota 2 International Playoffs Over

By Alice O'Connor on July 15th, 2014.

Not pictured: professionals.

The full pageantry of Valve’s whopping great Dota 2 tournament The International won’t kick off in Seattle until Friday, but already it’s seen a few upsets. Seven days of playoffs ended last night, whittling nineteen teams down to eight–with last year’s champions, Alliance, notably knocked out.

We haven’t seen all the fun and dressing Valve plan to fill the 17,000-capacity KeyArena with as teams fight over a $10 million prize pool, but we have got a fair look at how they’re trying to welcome newcomers, not to mention the state of the game. It’s a bit mixed, really.

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Mann Oh Mann: Valve Creates Early Access TF2 Servers

By Nathan Grayson on July 10th, 2014.

Early Access? For a game that’s been out since 2007? Yes, that is, in fact, a thing that can exist. Valve has decided to leave Mann Corp’s doors ever-so-slightly ajar so that fans might run around on Team Fortress 2‘s magical murder playgrounds before they officially hit live servers. So it’s a series of test servers for maps, essentially. Details below.

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Dote Night: Fairness, Tactics And The Poirot Of Esports

By Philippa Warr on July 9th, 2014.

Part of a miscellany of serious thoughts, animal gifs, and anecdotage from the realm of MOBAs/hero brawlers/lane-pushers/ARTS/tactical wizard-em-ups. One day Pip might even tell you the story of how she bumped into Na’Vi’s Dendi at a dessert buffet cart.

“Dota 2 is not about kills, it’s not about how many towers you can take, it’s about killing the throne. That’s the game”

I’m talking to Alliance’s manager Kelly Ong Xiao Wei about the “rat Dota” tag you’ll often hear applied to her team. I’ve been thinking about the phrase since I overheard her asking one of the Dota 2 commentators at ESL One to stop using it. Her point is that it’s not a neutral term. Rat Dota is also a judgement on the team and it implies they’re using an inferior or unworthy playstyle. That’s why she’s asking the casters to refrain from using it. But the more I think about the problem the more I wonder if there’s another solution.

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Finally: Someone Mixed Dota 2 And Mario Kart

By Nathan Grayson on July 8th, 2014.

It’s like they say, Internet gonna Internet. Thanks to a new and very good Mario Kart, kart racing is once again all the rage these days, and Dota 2 is more popular than all the cool kids in high school put together. What happens when you combine the two? It’s called Dota Dash, and it looks like it works maybe a little. Apparently, however, there’s still a whoooooole lot of work to be done. Video below.

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CBKBeebies: Dota 2 International’s ‘Newcomer’ Commentary

By Alice O'Connor on July 7th, 2014.

Top dad jokes in Dota.

“Furion’s playing rat doto” – four words full of meaning to the well-informed Dota 2 player but to most people, half of those aren’t even words.

Valve’s Dota 2 tournament The International later this month will be by far the highest-paying digital sports competition yet, with a prize pool currently sitting at $10,466,388. It’ll also be the most confusing digital sports competition. What a weird game Dota is. But the pageantry and big numbers will surely lure in the curious and confused, so Valve are planning a special commentary stream aimed at newcomers.

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Counter-Strike Update Adds Six Maps, Calms Dogs, More

By Graham Smith on July 2nd, 2014.

How long is it before everyone copies Valve’s Counter-Strike: Global Offensive update structure? The latest addition to the venerable multiplayer shooter is called Operation Breakout, and it adds six new maps for everyone to play for free. For those willing and able to pay $6, you then get a now-familiar bundle of upgrades including access to mission drops with the chance to unlock “45 exclusive weapon finishes”, a Challenge Coin which tracks your achievement-y ‘mission’ progress, and a new weapon case containing new community designs.

Given how most other games split their multiplayer communities by selling the maps directly, and given how that split is bad even for the developers, surely it’s only a matter of time before we’re covering our Battlefield and Call of Duty weaponry with paid-for and unlockable stickers and baubles. More details on the update and its maps below.

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Steam Summer Sale Is Go, With Summer Adventure Madness

By Graham Smith on June 19th, 2014.

GAMES.

Hide your wallets, shield your baby’s eyes: the Steam Summer Sale has launched. If you’re not familiar with it, this is the time of the year when Valve provide huge discounts to huge numbers of games, prompting everyone everywhere to buy games they might have missed at full price.

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Bread Or Alive: TF2 ‘Love And War’ Adds Bread Weapons

By Nathan Grayson on June 19th, 2014.

It’s day two of Team Fortress 2′s latest hyper-elaborate update, Love and War. Yesterday we got love in the form of dances and other taunts/expressions, but today, well, I’ll just let Futurama handle this one. This isn’t just any old regular war – the sort you might find at the bottom of the bargain bin at your local War Mart – though. No, no, this war has, um, bread. Oozing green teleporter-mutated bread, because Team Fortress 2′s sense of humor is nothing if not incredibly specific. You will find deet meats for this information sandwich below.

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TF2 Kicks Off ‘Love And War’ Update With… Dancing?

By Nathan Grayson on June 18th, 2014.

A mysterious countdown? Some teams? A fortress? I’m not sure if there’s a soul in the world who doesn’t know what this means by now: new Team Fortress 2 update. The latest multi-day reveal-stravaganza is called Love and War, and it’s kicked off its grim march not with new weapons or maps or colors other than red and blue, but rather, um, dancing. Also other expressions that will allow you to wordlessly communicate with and/or taunt your fellow players. There’s a new short film below, and it’s Valve’s longest ever, clocking in at a whopping 15 minutes. The topic? Inevitable, creeping death. Cheery!

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Flowing Traffic: Steam Greenlights Another 75 Games

By Graham Smith on June 13th, 2014.

MORE GAMES. MORE GAMES.

“Hmm? What’s that?” Valve spins around its chair, suddenly noticing the noise. “E3 just happened and we didn’t release any trailers for far away, in-development games? Right. Yeah, I guess you’re right about that.” Valve reaches over and pulls a rusting level by its desk. *k-k-k-thunk* Seventy-five new games have been greenlit, making their way through the community voting process to now have the right to release and sell their games through the service. This batch includes ADOM, Northern Shadow, The Hit, and a ton more obscure games.

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Do Not Pass CS:GO: Weapon Skin Removed After DMCA

By Graham Smith on June 12th, 2014.

Listening to the Terror through the wall

Valve games have become more and more dependent on the Steam Workshop for introducing new content and fuelling play. That’s never more the case than in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, which is as much about unlocking, buying and trading gun skins as it is familiar CT vs. T battles. So it’s interesting to see how Valve deal with copyright infringement within that community. After receiving a DMCA takedown notice about two items, the M4A4 | Howl and a community sticker named Howling Dawn, those items have been swiftly removed from the store and action taken against its creators.

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