Valve offer free game after ban blunder

Nothing says "I'm sorry" like zombies.

Well that’s certainly one way to apologise. Valve has offered not one, but two, copies of Left 4 Dead 2 to the 12,000 players that were accidently banned from playing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 via Steam.

Poor, innocent gamers found themselves banned from online servers and the internet was flooded with forum posts pleading for help. Alas, Valve support staff could only tell these poor gamers that they were unable to help. It looked like many wouldn’t be able to play Modern Warfare 2 on PC anymore.

However, each of these players can now get back to shooting each other again, and have the option to pick up two free copies of Left 4 Dead 2. So, now they can shoot zombies too.   Players affected by the ban received an e-mail from Valve CEO Gabe Newell which said:

“Recently, your Steam account was erroneously banned from Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2.

This was our mistake, and I apologize for any frustration or angst it may have caused you.

The problem was that Steam would fail a signature check between the disk version of a DLL and a latent memory version. This was caused by a combination of conditions occurring while Steam was updating the disk image of a game. This wasn’t a game-specific mistake. Steam allows us to manage and reverse these erroneous bans (about 12,000 erroneous bans over two weeks).

We have reversed the ban, restoring your access to the game. In addition, we have given you a free copy of Left 4 Dead 2 to give as a gift on Steam, plus a free copy for yourself if you didn’t already own the game.”

Well isn’t that nice?  It’s not often you see a Games Developer Apologise for their mistakes? Do Train2Game students think that other developers – we won’t name specific examples of course – could learn a thing or two from Valve? And have you ever thought about what you’d do if there was a mistake in one of your games?

As usual, leave your thoughts here or on the Train2Game forums.

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