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Valve Reverses Modern Warfare 2 VAC Bans

And gives a gift.

Over the weekend, a group of motivated individuals began telling us stories of woe involving erroneous Steam bans by Valve's anti-cheat software. Unclear as to the reason for their ban and hip to Valve's never comment stance that it had on VAC, these Modern Warfare 2 PC users were ticked off and worst of all, banned from jamming on their sixty-dollar purchase. But all is well now. Valve has reversed many, if not all, of the erroneous bans and given a gift of goodwill to those effected.

Valve boss Gabe Newell sent an email to erroneously VAC-banned users yesterday afternoon, explaining that the automated system was in error. According to him, a signature check issue was caused "by a combination of conditions occurring while Steam was updating the disk image of a game." It wasn't the game itself as some of the banned users speculated on the Steam forums.  
 


Because Steam allows Valve to reverse bans, the studio has. Newell said around 12,000 bad bans over the last two weeks have been overturned. 
  
In an equally excellent move, more than play play in Modern Warfare 2 is being restored by Valve and Newell. The studio is attempting to restore faith and trust--and probably score a few brownie points by casual, unaffected onlookers like us--by giving each erroneously banned player two free Steam copies of Left 4 Dead 2, one for them and one for a friend. Newell also issued an apology for the "frustration" and "angst" this situation caused. Little do these new owners of L4D2 know that these same feelings will come back three-fold when some jerk splits from the group in a suicidal safehouse dash.
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Posted by BradNicholson

Over the weekend, a group of motivated individuals began telling us stories of woe involving erroneous Steam bans by Valve's anti-cheat software. Unclear as to the reason for their ban and hip to Valve's never comment stance that it had on VAC, these Modern Warfare 2 PC users were ticked off and worst of all, banned from jamming on their sixty-dollar purchase. But all is well now. Valve has reversed many, if not all, of the erroneous bans and given a gift of goodwill to those effected.

Valve boss Gabe Newell sent an email to erroneously VAC-banned users yesterday afternoon, explaining that the automated system was in error. According to him, a signature check issue was caused "by a combination of conditions occurring while Steam was updating the disk image of a game." It wasn't the game itself as some of the banned users speculated on the Steam forums.  
 


Because Steam allows Valve to reverse bans, the studio has. Newell said around 12,000 bad bans over the last two weeks have been overturned. 
  
In an equally excellent move, more than play play in Modern Warfare 2 is being restored by Valve and Newell. The studio is attempting to restore faith and trust--and probably score a few brownie points by casual, unaffected onlookers like us--by giving each erroneously banned player two free Steam copies of Left 4 Dead 2, one for them and one for a friend. Newell also issued an apology for the "frustration" and "angst" this situation caused. Little do these new owners of L4D2 know that these same feelings will come back three-fold when some jerk splits from the group in a suicidal safehouse dash.
Posted by Weatherman

yaaay, i suppose :P

Posted by crusader8463

This is why I love Valve. If something like that happened on live I doubt they would ever admit they made a mistake in the first place let alone publicly apologize for it and give people a gift for their trouble.

Posted by EternalDarkWing

Gabe is the man.

Posted by Brazzle

Man, I wish I had earned a free copy of Left 4 Dead 2 for doing absolutely nothing.
 
Good practices from Valve, as always.

Posted by scarace360

valve they ban you and then unban you and then give you stuff. man that sounds awesome.

Posted by zerfl

Marry me Gabe.

Edited by readme

Great move ... It's rare to not only see a company admit they made a mistake but actually 
apologizing  to the user. 2 copys of L4D2 are the iceing on this amazing-cake. 
 
Yet again prove that Valve is made out of pure awesome.

Posted by ilduce620

Not to be a complete douche, but it's "affected," not "effected." 
 
" But all is well now. Valve has reversed many, if not all, of the erroneous bans and given a gift of goodwill to those effected." 
 
Sorry...just drives me nuts!  :-)

Posted by Meteora

Wow. 
 
Valve is pretty awesome.

Edited by cap123

Weird thing to do, giving them a free game. Not sure if Activision will want them to be distracting them from their game, after they accidentally banned their customers.
 
I suppose they've already got their money, I guess.

Posted by teh_destroyer

Nice stuff, they definitely know how to make up for there mistakes.

Posted by Phished0ne

this reminds me of that time i emailed gabe newell... 
 
Crazy that that dude actually answers emails he gets from the average joe. 

Posted by Warskull
@teh_destroyer said:
" Nice stuff, they definitely know how to make up for there mistakes. "
It really is a good move, they admit they screwed up, apologize, explain how they screwed up, and then give the customer a freebie to show they mean it.
Posted by HeadNodShy

Aaaaaw kittie.

Posted by Vinny_Says

not to be a douche but what does: " In an equally excellent move, more than play play in Modern Warfare 2 is being restored by Valve and Newell." mean? 

Posted by DarthB

is valve the only company that truly gets pr?  seems like it.

Posted by zaglis

Valve just cant stop giving.

Posted by MysteriousBob

Thanks for that picture of a cat, it really enhances your article. 
 
Jesus...

Posted by Brackynews

"This is Kitty."

Posted by miva2
@EternalDarkWing:  the big man
Posted by phrosnite

Ohhhh, look at the little, cute kitty :D

Posted by Nictel

every article improves with kittens.

Posted by CaptainTightPants

Good stuff, that's a great game.

Posted by Maxynator
Posted by DrBobUK

Now if Activision controlled Steam and VAC...

Posted by Shuborno

I love Valve, but I actually am very concerned by this.
 
Their policy is that there is NO appeal process for VAC bans.
 
They showed here that VAC bans can be incorrect.
 
What happens when only 10 people are affected by a mistake?  They'll lose their investment in all VAC-secured games, and Valve will just assume they were cheaters since it's only 10 people and not 12,000.
 
The real solution to this problem is to introduce an appeal process for VAC bans.

Posted by Legend
@phrosnite said:
" Ohhhh, look at the little, cute kitty :D "
Awww! :D :D :D
Online
Posted by Darksaw

Valve are awesome, they find a way to lose no face after such a big slip-up, not only that, they've turned those people and their friends onto one of their own products. Genius!

Posted by Seedofpower
@Meteora said:
" Wow.  Valve is pretty awesome. "
Yes, sir it is.
Posted by xMrSunshine

Where did all the "VAC bans can't be undone" speak go?

Posted by Landon

I wish I knew someone who was banned. I still haven't played Left 4 Dead 2 yet.

Posted by Newjack

It doesn't get any better than Valve.

Posted by Jazz

I wonder when they'll get around to releasing the Mac versions of L4D. 
It would be nice....

Posted by captain_clayman

awesome. 
 
maybe this means people will start giving away L4D2 :D 
 
but still no dedicated servers though >.>

Posted by Buccura

Valve is swell.

Posted by schattenwolf86

That's a cool gesture by Valve's part.  Maybe VAC will get looked at and not be the joke that it is.

Posted by sagesebas

 In an equally excellent move, more than play play in Modern Warfare 2 is being restored by Valve and Newell.  
 
Whats play play mean? 

Posted by Hicks

good on you valve you still listen to the people, after saying that, i cant play mw2 anymore as soon as you start a game the amount of abuse is mad, everyone calls everyone else a cheater, i have never cheated in my life but have quit from games of mw2 becasue of the abuse on them.
Posted by TheAdmin
@sagesebas said:
"  In an equally excellent move, more than play play in Modern Warfare 2 is being restored by Valve and Newell.   Whats play play mean?  "
haha - When will Nicholson start proofreading? 
Posted by AhmadMetallic
@scarace360 said:
" valve they ban you and then unban you and then give you stuff. man that sounds awesome. "
@zerfl said:
" Marry me Gabe. "
funny ass comments xD
Posted by sagesebas
@99X: Repeat words is like the simplest thing to fix, if your in word it will underline the repeated word for you. This is nothing more than laziness. 
Posted by FireBurger
@crusader8463 said:
" This is why I love Valve. If something like that happened on live I doubt they would ever admit they made a mistake in the first place let alone publicly apologize for it and give people a gift for their trouble. "
When they had server issues for a few days they gave everyone a free download of Undertow. Not nearly as generous, but it's still something.
Posted by Olivaw

Man, Valve is the best.

Posted by claudius

God damn. Valve is my favorite game company.

Posted by Fuga

Anyone got an extra to give away?

Posted by ITSSEXYTIME

Hah, I love how Valve managed to turn this into good PR.


VAC's no appeals policy (Plus the policy of not actually telling you why you were banned) + Permanent banning is a joke.  Additionally, this serves s proof that there can be false-positives.  If the bans were temporary it'd be a mild annoyance, but you can lose quite a bit with a VAC ban.  If you get VAC banned in a Source engine game, you cannot play ANY source engine game on a VAC server.  That means no TF2, Hl2DM ,L4D,  L4D2, Portal 2, Alien Swarm, Counterstrike: Source, Day of Defeat Source or any mods.  (On secure servers, which if you've ever actually tried to play on an unsecured server before it can be a nightmare)


That's potentially hundreds of dollars of games that you can't play because VAC decides to permanently ban you with no way to appeal the ban.  Considering that most VAC bans are 13 year olds being stupid, the whole concept of a permanent ban on first offense is a bit harsh to begin with.  Zero tolerance policies are stupid no matter what it is because there's ALWAYS a context, and I wish Valve would change the way VAC handles bans.  (Why would they though? If you get banned, you just end up buying the games a second time and making them money)

Online
Posted by MarkWahlberg

 I can has play play?
Posted by Guexx

damn i wanted to be banned...

Posted by Shuborno
@ITSSEXYTIME said:
"

Hah, I love how Valve managed to turn this into good PR.


VAC's no appeals policy (Plus the policy of not actually telling you why you were banned) + Permanent banning is a joke.  Additionally, this serves s proof that there can be false-positives.  If the bans were temporary it'd be a mild annoyance, but you can lose quite a bit with a VAC ban.  If you get VAC banned in a Source engine game, you cannot play ANY source engine game on a VAC server.  That means no TF2, Hl2DM ,L4D,  L4D2, Portal 2, Alien Swarm, Counterstrike: Source, Day of Defeat Source or any mods.  (On secure servers, which if you've ever actually tried to play on an unsecured server before it can be a nightmare)


That's potentially hundreds of dollars of games that you can't play because VAC decides to permanently ban you with no way to appeal the ban.

I'm totally with you on this.  Their policy is unacceptable. 
 
They are making good money having one of Activision's biggest games on their service, and I feel like this situation is occurring only because the false positive were with Modern Warfare 2. 
 
Who knows how many people with false positive VAC bans for other games got banned without any acknowledgement from support.  Obviously Valve can't argue that VAC is always right anymore.
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