Saturday, May 3, 2008

Valve catches achievement command exploit

Valve catches achievement command exploit

We were pretty excited when we learned about Valve's big update for Team Fortress 2 that would add new Medic achievements and weapons.  Fine, maybe only I was excited about it.

And how many of you guessed that Valve would somehow screw this up big time?  Very good, because you guys were correct.

This is the story of how Valve destroyed the TF2 natural order in merely two days.

April 29, Day 1 - Valve releases update, adding new Medic achievements to TF2.  The update killed my bandwidth, interrupting my GTA IV fun.  So maybe it was a bad idea for my roommate and I to try updating at the same time, but anyway...  The game is now flooded with Medics as players scramble to unlock the new achievements, not realizing that a team with no other classes can't efficiently deal out damage and win against a team that does appreciate balance.

This is quite annoying because I found myself forced to play as something else when I'm the one with 9 hours on a Medic (and less than an hour on the other classes).  Maybe I don't play TF2 like a gaming addict, but I play a Medic religiously; now suddenly, every joker decides they want to be a healing class?  Medic mayhem!

The best part of all this is that at some point, someone figured out that he did not need to actually earn any achievements.  The new update had somehow added an exploit in which players could simply type in commands to unlock the achievements and the three new weapons.  By the end of the day, many gamers were using these commands, whether to cheat or just out of curiosity.

April 30, Day 2- Valve caught on and churned out a new update to fix the exploits.  Here is the update news directly from the Steam website:

Team Fortress 2 Client

Removed TF2 achievement console commands

Team Fortress 2 Server

Fixed clients being able to trigger sv_soundscape_printdebuginfo on the serverFixed potential "nuke" exploit in rcon subsystem

Valve has made an attempt to further resolve this problem by rolling back, removing achievements from those who used the commands.  On the Steam forums, some have complained about losing all their achievements from the roll back, even the ones earned legitmately.  Others have yet to feel the wrath of Valve and are still running around with their Milestone weapons.

If you want to update to actually take effect, it's suggested that you restart Steam.  However, many of the community discussions suggest that Valve's problems are far from over - there will be much work ahead.

I'll be holding my breath for more updates, hoping that Valve will effectively address these issues.

Stargate Worlds MMO taking names for closed beta