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Community Announcements - CS:GO Official
As we consider what will be included in the next big Operation, we wanted to talk a bit about community made maps and how they are selected.

The CS:GO workshop community has generated a ton of custom made maps of increasingly high quality. We're currently in our fourth Operation, and so far Operations have featured a total of 21 unique community made maps. On average, each community map has earned over $23,000, per Operation it was featured in.

Deciding which maps are included in an Operation involves much consideration of several distinct criteria. Every map is considered and evaluated on its own individual merits. The final decision is made by carefully weighing each of the following contributing factors:

Theme / Aesthetic Quality

Maps should succeed at bringing players into the game by presenting an attractive and visually appealing space. Strong aesthetic quality should make players happy to spend time in the map, independent of gameplay considerations. This criteria may include a cohesive theme for the map, or a consistent style that helps players fulfill a fantasy. A good-looking map with a high level of polish that matches the quality of the official maps is a requirement, but a map with an interesting or unique core theme with spaces that feel like a real place, is of significant value. Our goal is not to dismiss any map out of hand, but rather to ensure that Operations include great-looking maps with consistent aesthetic quality.

Gameplay / Fun / Retention

If great visuals bring players in, great gameplay gets them to stay. When players are challenged or are having fun on a map, they will choose to play on the map over and over again. This is called Player Retention and is achieved by creating a map that is balanced, has lots of opportunities for a player/team to learn new strategies, develop new skills or have fun, new experiences. Ideally we want CS:GO’s maps to enjoy extended popularity due to strong gameplay even after the initial fantasy has waned. This will ensure that a map will stick around and keep players happy for a long time. Maps that don’t objectively meet these criteria will score poorly in this area.

Playtime / Interest

Community play time for workshop maps is a primary driving factor for determining map popularity, but community interest also plays a factor. Interest is a combination of a bunch of components including workshop ratings and community discussion, but (if applicable) we value how many people are currently playing a map and how much they play it as the most important factor in this category. The Playtime / Interest category is considered a wildcard category for us and will multiply the value of the first two categories, but can't make up for a map that scores very low in them.

Maps that excel in all three categories have a higher likelihood of being included in an Operation.

FAQ
My map wasn’t selected for this Operation, is it possible it’ll make it into a future operation?
Yes. If a map meets the bar on the criteria above, but did not get selected, it is still eligible to be included in future operations.

Will my map be considered for an Operation if it is not uploaded to the workshop?
No. Maps need to be on the CS:GO workshop to be considered in an Operation. Additionally, they need to be in a “shippable” state before Valve make the map picks for the upcoming Operation. Ideally, the map has also been played a bunch by the community and has gone through a lot of rounds of feedback and iteration.

But if it meets the bar and was submitted to the workshop on time, why wasn't it selected?
When the group of maps are selected for an Operation, the maps are selected so that they work as a collection. Our goal is to provide a collection of strong maps that have good gameplay variety and unique visuals that appeal to different groups of people. If your map meets the bar, but wasn't selected, it may have not fit well with the group selected and will be considered next time.

How important is “theme” in a map?
We consider theme to be very important. We tend to see a lot of maps that all have similar themes (warehouses, generic industrial, generic factories, etc) or maps that tend to heavily share themes with maps we’ve already shipped. Creating a map with a unique theme will help your map stand out to the community and will increase your chances of getting noticed/selected.

Will non-Classic (arms race, demolition etc.) maps ever be included in an Operation?
There are a lot of great non-Classic maps on the Workshop and we’re working on ways to include them in future Operations while still generating enough revenue for the map authors, but for now, we’re only including maps that support Classic modes.

What’s more important: New and novel features or tried and true familiar gameplay?
The short answer is that they are both equally important and different types players will value them differently. Players who have been playing for a long time have built up a lot of skills and expectations and playing a map that feels “familiar” to them is very important. But on the other hand, there are a lot of players who value new experiences which they can share with their friends and have fun. Producing a map that is both new and incorporates familiar things from classic maps is a good goal when producing a map.
Community Announcements - Gautam ☁
The CS:GO workshop community constantly amazes us with weapon finishes and stickers of increasingly high quality. We have currently shipped over 70 weapon submissions made by the community and all together, CS:GO weapon finish creators have earned over $3 million, with each finish earning over $40,000 on average.

Since shipping the first community case, we've gathered and responded to a variety of contributor questions. Common questions include "how do I get my submission in a case?", and "what can I do better to get my work noticed?". These are useful questions to answer for all contributors, so we've outlined our answers in the form of contributor tips below:

Tips for Contributors

  • Submit only high quality designs that were made by you. The entirety of the submission must be your creation; no clip art. It must be original content and if the work is the result of collaboration then every contributor must be listed in the contributor revenue share. The designs that you submit must be of high quality in execution. Showing your process is a great way to stand out and demonstrate the quality and originality of your work.

  • For weapon finishes, consider making finishes for weapons that have few high quality submissions. Some weapons don’t have a lot of high quality finishes submitted for them (Duel Berettas and Negev for example). Making high quality original finishes for those weapons is great way to stand out and increase you chances of making it into a case. Keep in mind each item in a case gets an equal share of the revenue.

  • Vary the techniques, themes and finish types, and try to experiment with new ones. When putting together cases and capsules we look for items that vary in technique and theme. Technique is the type of artwork that is used. Graphic patterns and hand painted designs are examples of different techniques. Example for themes would be finishes that look Sci-fi or Military. If you are making finishes for a particular weapon you may want to make one with a technique or theme that is under-represented, or hasn't been attempted yet. Certain types of finishes are also underrepresented in the workshop. In particular finishes that allow for flexibility in the way a pattern is applied to a weapon. These offer players a chance to get a unique version of a weapon finish.

  • Don't fixate on bold designs. Cases and capsules also contain designs that vary in saturation and contrast. Currently on the workshop we see many high contrast highly saturated designs. These designs can be identified from a distance but equally important are designs that are subtle enough to only be noticed when held, as different players have different preferences when it comes to broadcasting their weapon finish choice. Try making designs that vary in saturation and contrast. Sometimes making a subtle design is actually harder than a bold one.

  • Don't forget about popularity. Getting your finish upvoted and noticed is a great way to demonstrate desirability and collect feedback that will help you iterate on it. One of the factors we use to gauge community interest is the popularity of a submission.

Hopefully this information is helpful when you are making decisions on what to work on. We look forward to seeing even more amazing work from the CS:GO Community.
Community Announcements - SZ


The International draws near! All around the world players and spectators are preparing themselves for the battles to come. It all begins next Tuesday the 8th with the start of the Playoffs. To help you get the most out of the biggest event in Dota history, visit The International Tournament Website, where you can review the entire tournament schedule, find spoiler-free streams of each day's games, learn about the new Multicast and Newcomer's Broadcast streams, locate a local Pubstomp, read up on the latest TI4 news, discover what this year's champions stand to win, and more.

Need more ways to keep track of The International? Be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter (#TI4), Flickr, and Instagram.

Once the dust has settled and the new champions have emerged, everyone who owns a Compendium will discover a new gem in their inventory to show off their dedication to The International by displaying their Compendium level, as well as a new emoticon to match. The types of gem and emoticon received will change based on the owner's Compendium level when the tournament ends:


  • Copper (Level 1)
  • Bronze (Level 10)
  • Silver (Level 25)
  • Gold (Level 50)
  • Platinum (Level 100)
  • Diamond (Level 500)


Finally, we're launching a new batch of treasures on the store, all of which feature sets and items from pro players and teams. Open a Treasure of the Elemental Trophy, Tangled Keepsake, and Cannon's Fuse to claim items from a variety of pro teams and players, or purchase a Treasure of the Eternal Alliance to earn one of several new items from last year's grand champions, Alliance.
Community Announcements - SZ


A pile of Compendium rewards have just been released! Check out the new Pudgling courier, chat emoticons, weather effects and more. Purchasing a Compendium unlocks all present and future Compendium rewards, such as couriers, immortal items, battle booster, stat tracking, and an unusual taunt for the upcoming Techies hero.

With this update, we're also introducing Live Rewind, allowing you to pause, rewind, and jump around the timeline when spectating any live game. Saw an awesome team fight? Rewind and watch it again and again. Need to grab a drink while your favorite team is playing? Pause the match and resume when you get back.

Meanwhile, if you're coming to The International, you might want to head over to our Ticketing FAQ to prepare yourself for the event.

Can't make it to The International? Try joining (or hosting!) a Pubstomp, where people around the world gather locally to watch The International. Check out our Pubstomp page to learn more.
Community Announcements - jaypinkerton


Engineer and Medic make an unsettling new discovery while experimenting with the teleporter. Meanwhile, Scout stops insulting Spy long enough to ask him an embarrassing favor; the Administrator's clerical assistant/cleaner/murder expert Miss Pauling races to bury some incriminating bodies; and Soldier makes a new metal friend. Check it out here.
Community Announcements - davidw
We have updated the public release of Portal 2. This update contains all the changes from the recent beta. We would like to thank the community for the testing and suggestions that have been provided.

Changes:

  • Linux / SteamOS beta is now available
  • Steam controller support beta
  • Some translation updates
  • Fixed bugs with triple-monitor displays
  • Some other bug fixes
Community Announcements - SZ


The teams have been invited, and the Qualifiers have ended. All that remains is to prepare for the battles to come. Now, we can reveal what form those battles will take. Head over to The Path to The Dota 2 Championship page and learn about each stage of the tournament, from the phases within the Playoffs all the way to the Grand Finals at the Main Event in KeyArena.
Community Announcements - CS:GO Official
Recently we received a DMCA takedown notice regarding copyright infringement with respect to the the M4A4 | Howl, and a community sticker, Howling Dawn, claiming that the artwork was not originally created by the stated contributors. This matter is extremely serious, and we have taken appropriate action to resolve it.

When we launched the CS:GO Items Workshop, our goal was to provide artists with a space to share their creative ideas. By design, the Items Workshop has very low friction for artists to submit their work – new contributions do not require Valve review or approval. To ensure that these contributions represent original content, we require that all Workshop contributors sign a legal agreement confirming that their contributions are original. We also enable the community to monitor Workshop submissions and identify copies and plagiarism via the report flag.

All contributors share joint responsibility for the originality of their Workshop submission, and therefore share joint liability for claims of copyright infringement. That is, if two or more artists collaborate on a submission and the submission contains intellectual property that isn’t their own, all artists involved in the submission will share in the consequences.

For the items in question, the following steps have been taken:

  • Both contributors have received Steam Community bans. They receive no proceeds from either item, and both items have been removed from the game.
  • For owners of the M4A4 | Howl and Howling Dawn sticker, those items have been replaced by an alternative designed by the CS:GO team. These items will never be produced again, and have been assigned the ‘Contraband’ rarity.
  • All other in-game items that involve at least one of the contributors in their revenue share have been discontinued.
  • The Huntsman Case and Community Sticker Capsule have been revised to replace the copied and discontinued items.
  • Moving forward, we will no longer work with the contributors and we will not ship any existing Workshop submission that credits their involvement.

The cost for everyone involved in the resolution of this issue has been significant, including our players and community members. It takes considerable time and effort for the CS:GO team to resolve copyright infringement disputes, but fortunately copying is rare – the CS:GO community has submitted tens of thousands of unique entries to the Workshop, and we have shipped dozens of your designs without a problem.

To ensure that we don’t have issues in the future, we need your help. Please only contribute original work. If you see any items that appear to violate the Workshop copyright policy, please direct the copyright owner to tell us via Valve’s DMCA takedown page. Together we can keep the Workshop a safe place for artists and their hard work.
Community Announcements - DerrickG™


Valve is looking for Dota 2 Workshop contributors who are attending the Dota 2 International Championship!

If you are a Dota 2 Workshop contributor attending the International at Key Arena on July 18-21st, and you have shipped items in Dota 2, we would like to offer you a custom Workshop contributor badge to wear at the event. The Workshop contributor badge will have a piece of custom artwork, your name, and your alias. Please contact us at ti-contributors@valvesoftware.com so we may gather more details from you, and provide you with a template for the badge artwork. This Workshop contributor badge offer is in addition to the current ticket you have purchased, and does not replace it. The deadline to get artwork to us is Monday June 9th, 2014.

We are looking forward to seeing you at the International!
Community Announcements - CS:GO Official
Release Notes for 6/4/2014

[ MATCHMAKING ]
- When a player has been banned for cheating (via VAC or Overwatch), all Skill Group adjustments from that player's recent wins will be reverted for their partied teammates as well as their opponents.

[ MISC ]
- The "thirdperson" and related commands are now executable by servers (for mods and plugins).
- Added a server convar (sv_allow_thirdperson) which allows servers to set players to third person mode.
- The env_fog_controller entity now has a field and input to scale the amount fog is adjusted when players zoom (with scoped weapons).
- Community tournament servers with built-in round backups enabled will automatically restore all player data upon reconnection and this in most cases will avoid having to load round backups.
...

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