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Posts tagged “Valve”

The cruel and unusual Halfquake mod trilogy returns on Steam

The latest Half-Life mod to resurface, repacked and polished on Steam is Halfquake Trilogy - defining 'masocore' well before I Wanna Be The Guy made it a genre. Halfquake is a trilogy of surreal and cruel puzzle-centric mods by Philipp "Muddasheep" Lehner and they're some of the most interesting maps produced for the original Half-Life. Featuring  striking, abstract environments, genuinely clever puzzles, some very stupid ones…

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive gives the FBI a makeover

Valve have replaced another plank on the ship of Theseus that is Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, this time ripping out ye olde FBI player models from 2012 to slip in some shiny new ones. These stinkin' rat feds are now wearing blue FBI windbreakers over blue jeans, changing out of their drab olive assault team gear into something comfy which reflects the classic look of agents…

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Valve renames Artifact card after feedback questioning racist connotations

Valve have responded to some raised eyebrows regarding a recently revealed card for their upcoming game Artifact by changing its name. What was once called ‘Crack The Whip’ will now become ‘Coordinated Assault’ to avoid connotations of slavery and racism when considered alongside the card’s text, which begins "modify a black hero." To be clear, ‘black’ cards do not refer to race, but are a…

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Valve to start moderating Steam’s game forums

Much of the Internet is awful, everyone agrees, though people disagree about exactly which parts are the bad ones. This becomes a problem when you need to venture into one of the bad places, perhaps to search a game's Steam forum for a solution to a problem. Oh no! Now you're wading through a swamp swarming with alligators cussing you to the nines when all…

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TF2 Pyro dodgeball looks like a blast

Header image by DJ KamBer. It seems like Team Fortress 2 players come up with a new sport every time I take my eyes off them. Remember that 6v6 frying pan only tournament? And The Beginning's 5 jumping competition? Well, now we have dodgeball. The United Dodgeball League two day cup kicks off on September 22nd, when Pyros will start scurrying around airblasting rockets at…

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Negligee: Love Stories will be one of the first fully explicit ‘Adult Only’ games on Steam

This feels like a milestone - a sexy milestone. When Valve said that under their new content warning system, there'd be fewer restrictions on what could be sold on Steam, I was sceptical. Now it seems they were true to their word. If nothing goes wrong between now and its launch this Friday, saucy visual novel Negligee: Love Stories will be Steam's first uncut sexually explicit…

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Valve will require developers to write their own Steam store content warnings

Valve continue to wrestle with the self-made monster that is their storefront. Earlier this year, they said Steam would be lifting most of its restrictions, meaning they would no longer decide what should and shouldn't be allowed on their store as long as it wasn't illegal or "straight up trolling". Today, the company made another statement to explain some of the ways they'll carry out…

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Watch a full match of Artifact

There's a lot going on in Artifact. I'd already read enough to know that, but apparently I needed to see a game play out before the extent of the complexity sank in. Now I can't wait to start laying cards down on three separate lanes, working towards two different victory conditions, parsing each card's stats and tooling up heroes with equippable items. Artifact is Valve's…

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive’s botmatches and GOTV are now free for all

Valve have released a free version of Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, although it's more like a demo. As detailed in their latest patch notes, the free version of the ultra-popular esports FPS is limited to offline play only (including bots) and watching other players through their highly flexible GOTV spectator mode. This update also permanently retires the old 'legacy' UI, in favour of the fancy new Panorama style,…

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OG win Dota 2’s The International, $11 million prize

European Dota 2 team OG triumphed in this year’s The International, netting a whopping $11.2 million (£8.7 million) grand prize. They beat out China-based team PSG.LGD to take the win. TI8 boasted the largest prize pool of any esports event to date, with teams competing for part of a $25.4 million (£20m) total. The second place finishers still walked away with $4 million (£3.1m), which…

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Dota 2 announces two new heroes, one playable now

Valve’s MOBA Dota 2 is having a busy couple of weeks. The finals of its esports championship The International are tonight, and as part of the celebration they’ve announced two new heroes, one of whom is playable now. Grimstroke, named for the fact that uses ink from his runebinding brush to “channel vile forces,” is currently available, while Mars, who appears to be very much…

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Steam on Linux expanding support for Windows games

Valve have done a huge amount for gaming on Linux, bringing their store and client to the open-source operating system [don't even... -ed.] while encouraging and supporting other developers to port more games over. Their next step is building tools into Steam which can let Windows games without official Linux versions run seamlessly on Linux, appearing and working like any other Steam game. This expansion…

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Gabe Newell steps up to the mic in new Dota 2 voice pack

With over $25 million (£19m) now in the prize pool for Dota 2's The International tournament, Valve need a certain level of hype and energy to match that. Enter Gabe Newell, the softly-spoken CEO, knife-collecting uncle, and megacorp mascot. A new voice pack for Dota 2 has Newell deadpan through announcing large numbers of murders, delivering lines including "Megakill", "Monsterkill", "More than two kills but…

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Steam expands its broadcasting features, starting with The International 2018 live on SteamTV

While Twitch still seems a popular venue to watch Dota 2 mega-tourney The International, Valve have rolled out a few upgrades to Steam Broadcasting. If it tickles your fancy, you can now watch the massive esport event on SteamTV, complete with Steam friends integration and the option to invite your regular Dota posse to watch the match with you in a private chat (text or…

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive pulls the old but reliable MP5 out of retirement

While other esports games continually rework and re-imagine themselves, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive moves slow and steady. New weapons and systems are tentatively introduced once in a blue moon, so it's not surprising that its latest addition feels conservative. Absent since Counter-Strike: Source passed the torch to CS:GO, the now-silenced MP5 submachine gun is now available for use in offline, official casual and deathmatch modes, though Valve…

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Half-Life mod Echoes pushes both its engine and players to their absolute limits

While Black Mesa may be rebuilding Half-Life's world on a slightly more modern foundation, modder James "MrGnang" Cockburn reckons there's some life in Valve's old GoldSrc engine yet. Half-Life: Echoes is an impressive mod released last Friday, putting the player in the shoes of a scientist elsewhere in the Black Mesa facility when everything goes to hell. Cue the usual running, gunning, fighting soldiers and weird…

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Valve chap says last night’s Steam sexy search filtering was a mistake

Those with their ear to the pipes might've heard rumblings last night about Steam's search feature hiding all games with a whiff of wallopers and/or jubblies, seemingly a huge break from Valve's supposed stance of not restricting content on Steam. A variety of games, from jiggly-bedicked party platformer Mount Your Friends 3D to steamy comedy Ladykiller In A Bind, were briefly filtered out from everyone's…

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The best jumps that jumpers jumped in The Beginnings 5 TF2 jumping competition

Welcome to the weird and wonderful world of Team Fortress 2 jumping. It's a lot like normal TF2, only rather the shooting people the goal is to propel yourself skywards using explosively powered movement techniques on custom designed maps. Yeah, it's nothing like normal TF2. Jumpers have tournaments too though. They've spent the past month hopping through three separate events in the Beginnings 5 competition.…

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OpenAI’s bots just thrashed some of the world’s best Dota players

"We estimate the probability of winning to be above 95%", said OpenAI's Dota 2 bots at the start of their second game against extremely skilled humans. I knew they'd been trained up using a sophisticated reinforcement learning technique that had instilled them with millenia worth of experience. I didn't know they'd been versed in trash talk. It seems they had training time to spare, because…

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Counter-Strike: Global Offensive’s new ‘Panorama’ UI is now go go go

Valve have rolled Counter-Strike: Global Offensive's shiny new user interface, named 'Panorama', out as the default after weeks of public testing. It's light, it's colourful, and it stops the game feeling weirdly business-like. I like it! CS:GO's style felt like productivity software pretending to be fun, and this feels like a video game. It's not all sunshine, mind, as it may run worse on older…

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