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Posted by natetodamax

That's really cool. Good on Valve for doing that!

Posted by James0890
@Shuborno:  
What's more worrying about this is that we wrong about how VAC works, from what people could surmise it looked like VAC was using full cheat signature flagging. This means that VAC would look for the complete memory signature of a known cheat in it's database. Using this method it's highly unlikely for VAC to be wrong, because it only looks for programs confirmed to be cheating utilities by VALVe. Obviously IW wouldn't push out a patch with a known cheat from VALVe's database so clearly VAC must work in another way. 
 
If it's using a method like heuristics then there could be far more false positives than VALVe cares to admit.
Posted by zitosilva

Here's hoping some friend of mine was banned, and has a extra copy of L4D2 now.

Posted by Shuborno
@James0890 said:
" @Shuborno:  What's more worrying about this is that we wrong about how VAC works, from what people could surmise it looked like VAC was using full cheat signature flagging. This means that VAC would look for the complete memory signature of a known cheat in it's database. Using this method it's highly unlikely for VAC to be wrong, because it only looks for programs confirmed to be cheating utilities by VALVe. Obviously IW wouldn't push out a patch with a known cheat from VALVe's database so clearly VAC must work in another way.  If it's using a method like heuristics then there could be far more false positives than VALVe cares to admit. "
I certainly don't want or expect them to divulge how VAC works, because that will just lead to more cheating. 
 
I'm assuming the support costs for allowing appeals are high - assuming VAC bans are relatively accurate, Valve will have a ton of people who hack or cheat costing them money and taking up time their support team could be spending on "real" issues.  (You can be sure that 99% of people who get banned would try to appeal.)  I would think that's the real reason for not having an appeals process. 
 
However, Valve has always seemed to be a company oriented around what is best for the consumer.  They have relatively loose DRM around their own games, figure out the business details and costs behind perks like Steam Play and Steam Cloud, etc.  There is precedent to them spending money to keep their customers happy without an instantly obvious return on that investment.
 
I'm starting to become hesitant to buy VAC-secured stuff on their store because I don't want a false positive ban to hit me ever.  I have too much invested in my account.
Posted by James0890
@Shuborno:  
Well VAC bans per-engine so you shouldn't be afraid of purchasing non-VALVe VAC games, the people who were banned from MW2 would still have been able to access their Source games since that is a different engine. However you are correct about games made with Source, then you are pretty much SOL.
Posted by RiotBananas

Nicholson needs to learn to fucking write. 
 
@blacklabeldomm said:

" 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?  "

@ilduce620 said:
" 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 Djeffers03

Valve are awesome.

Posted by Animasta
@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.  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)

"
wrong; they have different branches of source and lots of them are different; L4D and L4D2 are seperate, some others are seperate too (you can find a list on the steam forums somewhere)
Posted by Sanious

They're getting banned from a broken ass multiplayer game and getting an awesome co-op game instead. Valve is pro!

Posted by XenoZak

"12,000 Bans"
 
Thats a massive cock-up that was obviously an error. I'm sure microsoft wouldn't have admitted it if it was their error but its pretty hard for anyone (Especially a company as nice as valve) not to admit its an error and fix it.
 
But it does take an exceptionally nice company to give 2 free copies of one of their AAA titles away to all 12,000 of em.

Posted by Kyle
Sanious said:
" They're getting banned from a broken ass multiplayer game and getting an awesome co-op game instead. Valve is pro! "
This.
Posted by fisk0
@James0890 said:
" @Shuborno:  What's more worrying about this is that we wrong about how VAC works, from what people could surmise it looked like VAC was using full cheat signature flagging. This means that VAC would look for the complete memory signature of a known cheat in it's database. Using this method it's highly unlikely for VAC to be wrong, because it only looks for programs confirmed to be cheating utilities by VALVe. Obviously IW wouldn't push out a patch with a known cheat from VALVe's database so clearly VAC must work in another way.  If it's using a method like heuristics then there could be far more false positives than VALVe cares to admit. "

I think it said in the VAC forums that VAC is set up differently depending on the game.

The Source engine games are pretty open and allow a lot except for cheats whose signatures VAC could look for. 

Modern Warfare 2 on the other hand - despite running on the open Quake 3 engine - is extremely closed. Any kind of modding or editing of core game files are considered an cheat for MW2, and VAC for the game is set up accordingly - so when it noticed that some core files were different from how it thought they were supposed to look, it banned the users with the changed files.

As it turned out, there was some kind of issue where Steam had made an error while updating files (some said it only happened to owners of the retail version, who had installed and activated the game on Steam through the disc), and VAC then banned everybody who had those files.

Online
Posted by lumpkin
@ITSSEXYTIME:  VAC is far more reliable than a cheaters account of what happened. I've been using Steam since they forced it on us with Counter-Strike 1.6.  I hated it then, but love it now. It's come a long way.  
 
I've bought and played nearly a hundred games on the service. Me nor any of my friends have ever been banned due to a false hit. 
 
VAC keeps people playing Steam games, without it, D-Bags like yourself would ruin the games for everyone else.
Posted by matrix_hiei

more proof that valve is awesome

Posted by TheKing

I'll take someones extra! =P

Posted by FireSketch

Yo, Valve. You suck and stuff. I hate you so much I want to be banned.
 
...am I doing it right?

Posted by Godzilla_Sushi

Can I work for Valve please?

Posted by Bam_D_Leprechaun

man, i want L4D2 :(

Edited by Diabloshadow
@Warskull:  Dear Apple, @Warskull said:

" @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. "
Dear Apple and Steve Jobs. Learn this please.
Posted by Gamer_152

Wow, once again a brilliant move on Valve's part.

Moderator
Posted by kratier

somehow doubt a system can make an error of 12,000 within 1 day,
 
it might have reported the cheat in error, but someone had to press the giant ban button when the list amounted to 20,000

Posted by fisk0

They basically gave away L4D2 during the "Perils of summer" sale - without having you pay 60 bucks to get banned in MW2 first.

Online
Posted by jmrwacko

Valve is so awesome, they even cover for IW's mistakes.

Posted by SL33TBL1ND
@EternalDarkWing said:
" Gabe is the man. "
Posted by DanOConnor

I think they dealt with it really well and i'm actually jealous of the guys that got copies of left 4 dead 2!

Posted by StickyMicky

WTF is "play play" ? 

Posted by shazb0t

Yup. PC really is awesome. :P

Posted by TheMoD

awww look at that kitty

Posted by MythDarK
@StickyMicky said:
" WTF is "play play" ?  "
It's the sound of the dog in "Over the hedge".
Posted by Shuborno
@Bam_D_Leprechaun said:
" man, i want L4D2 :( "
It was on sale for only $10 not long ago.  I'm sure there will be more sales.
Posted by benpatient

so how do i get someone who got a couple copies of L4D2 to gift me one? 
*wink wink*

Posted by KingdomKey

Wow...thats amazing. It makes me feel good when companies give back to their fanbase. Doesnt happen at all in the industry. Anyone else would have said "Your screwed,to bad."
*bows for Valve*

Posted by TheCheese33
@ITSSEXYTIME: You're clearly upset because you were banned for a legitimate reason and are too chicken to admit it.
Posted by DBIZMO

Good to see Valve admitting to their mistakes and actually giving back to their customers.

Posted by Raymayne
@crusader8463: Not that anything so ridiculous would ever happen on Live, but in the past when the service has gone down for some people, MS have issued apologies and have given free gifts to every single Live user (The XBLA game Undertow being one example). So, y'know...shut up :|
Posted by DJofSparta

I barely read this article. I was too focused on the cute kitty.

Posted by TwoOneFive

uhhhhh okay. 

Posted by ITSSEXYTIME
@lumpkin:
I'm not saying VAC is a terrible system for detecting cheaters.  But I think it's far too harsh for first offenses.  
Posted by ITSSEXYTIME
@TheCheese33:

Yes, because anyone who thinks that people being permanently banned for a moment of stupidity must be a cheater.


I suppose if I think that people should be allowed to use silver ware in school without a suspension I must endorse child violence right?  

Posted by Onno10

I'm one of those who got banned wrongly, and I have to say some things.
Being treated like absolute crap on both the vac forums or by valve official support is definitely NOT fun. "VAC did NOT make an error..." and the likes were about  the only responses I got. I'm glad all these valve cockwits have been shut up now, as NOBODY can claim that their COMPUTER program is 100% foolproof.
  tough it's nice we got afree game tough. :)  

Posted by HitmanAgent47

I'm sure everyone already owns left4dead 2 with steam, or most ppl. It's like giving them a game they already had, twice to say your sorry. They should be able to choose from any valve games at least.

Posted by adoggz
@HitmanAgent47: 
its cool for people who don't have l4d2 like me so if anyone got a spare copy of l4d2 that they don't need maybe you could throw it my way if you don't mind  :D
Posted by Azteck
@jmrwacko: Vac is Valve software though, and not IW stuff. Or is there something I'm missing?