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Valve finally speaks on Team Fortress 2 after years of silence on 'bot crisis'

Team Fortress 2
(Image credit: Valve)

What you need to know

  • Valve has finally spoken on Team Fortress 2's "bot crisis" problem after two years of silence on the matter.
  • The developer has plans to "improve things" moving forward, though it's unclear how Valve plans to combat the botting issue specifically.
  • Team Fortress 2 hasn't had a major content update since 2017, and Valve hasn't communicated from the game's Twitter account since July 2020.

After years of silence from Valve regarding the constant influx of bot accounts using hacks into Team Fortress 2's official servers, the developer has finally commented on the issue through the game's official Twitter account. "TF2 community, we hear you," Valve said. "We love this game and know you do, too. We see how large this issue has become and are working to improve things." Notably, this marks the first time the account was used to Tweet something since July 2020. 

Team Fortress 2 (TF2) has remained one of the most popular shooter games available on PC despite its 15 year age, with the game standing as Steam's seventh most played game at the time of writing. Fans have stuck around for TF2's incredibly well-balanced gameplay, diverse pool of maps, and charming characters and visual style, but since mid-2020, hackers have continuously flooded Valve's official servers with cheating bots that ruin the experience for everyone. TF2's fans have been calling on Valve to address the issue ever since, and following the recent launch of the #SaveTF2 hashtag on social media that quickly went viral, the developer has finally responded.

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It's great to hear that Valve has plans to shore up TF2's anti-cheat defenses against botting, though many are bitter about the fact that it took this much effort to get the developer to address the problem to begin with. After all, TF2 hasn't had a major update since The Jungle Inferno Update in 2017, and for a long time, it seemed like Valve was content to ignore TF2 entirely. As a hardcore TF2 veteran myself, I'm just glad that one of my favorite games of all time will soon be playable again outside of community servers.

Right now, it's unclear what exactly Valve is planning to do to combat TF2's cheating issue, though it's reasonable to assume that significant improvements will be made to the game's Valve Anti-Cheat (VAC) systems. With any luck, these enhancements will get TF2 into a stable state. 

Maybe after that's done, Valve, we can have a content update? As a treat? Surely one of the best PC games ever made deserves one, no?

Brendan Lowry is a Windows Central writer and Oakland University graduate with a burning passion for video games, of which he's been an avid fan since childhood. You'll find him doing reviews, editorials, and general coverage on everything Xbox and PC. Follow him on Twitter.