Left 4 Dead 2 - the gish
<b>Gib Fest</b>
Blast the infected to shreds with M60s.

Swords can slice up some fun. Chainsaws can tear apart the infected. But you need to get close for both and well… chainsaws are really loud! Time to go with the ultimate gun, you and three friends armed with M60s and unlimited ammo. This is going to get messy.

<b>Cold Stream</b>
As we recently posted on our blog, we are busy working on the full Cold Stream DLC which will include Cold Stream, Blood Harvest, Crash Course, Dead Air, Death Toll, and No Mercy. We will be updating Campaigns on Steam with bug fixes as we get ready to ship the DLC.

Check the release notes as the list of fixes is extensive. The Xbox 360 will get Campaigns with the bug fixes at a future date.
Team Fortress 2 - SZ
<a href="http://media.steampowered.com/apps/tf2/artwork/meet_the_christmas.jpg"><img src="http://www.teamfortress.com/images/posts/meet_the_christmas.jpg" height="275" width="420"border="0"></a>

With all the hustle and busty fustle of Australian Christmas, you probably thought we forgot the most important part of it: The gift-giving. Well, we didn't forget. We were hoping <i>you</i> would. But you didn't--you guys are sharp! So get your Gift-Gettin' Pants on, because you are about to <b>get gifts,</b> and we'd prefer you were wearing pants for it.

<b>GIFTED!</b> All the community items previously only available in the Nice Crates are now craftable, droppable, and available in all the ways you're used to getting them!

<b>ALSO THIS GIFT!</b> A free Secret Saxton for every premium account!

<b>DUCK! GIFT COMIN' ATCHA!</b> To acknowledge all you generous souls who've been handing out Secret Saxtons and piles of gifts since the formation of the TF economy, everybody is receiving a Spirit of Giving badge. It's a plate-sized x-ray illustrating to your peers exactly how big your heart is, and consequently, what a good person you are. You—and more importantly, everybody else—will actually be able to <b>see</b> your heart grow over time depending how many gifts you're giving. We strapped an actual decommissioned Soviet-era x-ray machine to several team members' chests, and trust us, the science checks out: The people in our experiment with the biggest hearts <b>were</b> in fact the nicest guys on staff. How do we know? You should have <b>seen</b> how many people showed up at their funerals.

<b>STOCKING STUFFER!</b> In an effort to get the gift-giving juices flowing, we've made every map as Smissmassy as possible by wrapping lights around every rope!
<b>BUT THE GREATEST GIFT OF ALL...</b> was <i>inside you all along.</i> It's blood! Turns out you can sell it! See you at the plasma center! Merry Smissmas, everybody!
Portal 2 - the gish
Ooh! We forgot to mention something yesterday: One of the awards we were up for at the VGAs was Best Character. We can't say for sure if we came in second, but we definitely didn't win, so Wheatley's acceptance speech was never aired. <a href="http://youtu.be/ymMrwlsbtrI">Until now!</a>

Speaking of not winning, guess who didn't win Destructoid's Game of the Year. If you guessed Portal 2, we hope you didn't actually call your local sports book and put any money on that guess, because <a href=" http://www.destructoid.com/the-winner-of-destructoid-game-of-the-year-2011-218043.phtml?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Destructoid+%28Destructoid%29"><i>we won!</i></a> WE'RE #1! Unless you're reading E-Online, in which case, <a href="http://www.eonline.com/photos/gallery.jsp?galleryUUID=4186#159051">WE'RE BACK TO #2!</a>

Look, we understand that awards season is a turbulent emotional hell ride. But you know what would probably make you feel better? Buying things. It just feels <i>good</i>. With that in mind, we've put a bunch of Portal 2 merchandise on sale. For example, this incredible <a href=" http://store.valvesoftware.com/product.php?i=P2229">1970s-style Portal 2 movie poster</a> is 50% off! And if you're planning to go out to eat for the holidays, you should know that many restaurants now require shirts, something this 50% off <a href=" http://store.valvesoftware.com/product.php?i=CP216 ">"Wheatley Laboratories" tee</a> is 100% guaranteed to be. Frankly, there's figuratively literally too much Portal 2 stuff on sale to list in one blog post, but you can check it all out <a href=" http://store.valvesoftware.com/index.php?g=9">here.</a> If you order forty bucks worth of stuff, we'll throw in a FREE Aperture Lanyard. Just add it to your cart and then enter the code "COMBUSTIBLELANYARD" at the checkout.

And just so you don't think all we're trying to do is sell you stuff, here's a sentence where we don't try to sell you anything. Now that that's over, J!nx has some <a href=" http://www.jinx.com/shop/coll/portal2/srt/new/ps/70/ ">excellent Portal gear</a>, including the world's only Portal-themed baby onesies. Between now and December 22nd, you can get ten bucks off a thirty-five dollar order by entering the code "MILKANDCOOKIES" when you checkout.

If you have enough shirts and/or no babies, ThinkGeek has some crazy Portal 2 inspired non-clothing products like an actual, working <a href="http://www.thinkgeek.com/geektoys/science/eb0a/?srp=16 ">PotatOS science kit</a>, a <a href="http://www.thinkgeek.com/gadgets/lights/ea43/?srp=37">Wheatley LED flashlight</a>, and an <a href="http://www.thinkgeek.com/geektoys/collectibles/ea60/?srp=46">honest-to-God talking Cave Johnson Portrait</a>. Until December 22nd, you can get five bucks off a thirty dollar order or ten bucks off a fifty dollar order by entering the code "YOUSAVED SCIENCE" at the checkout.

Finally, do you like Portal 2? If the answer to that question is "no", then, man, did you make a wrong turn somewhere on the Internet. For everyone else, how would you like to celebrate those warm feelings every time you move your mouse? Because now that's possible with <a href=" http://steelseries.com/products/games/portal2/steelseries-qck-portal-2-edition?utm_source=valve&utm_medium=newsletter&utm_campaign=portal2qck">SteelSeries' new Portal 2 mousepad</a>. It won't be available to order until tomorrow. But from then until December 26th, you'll be able to buy it for 15% off by using the code "SSP215".
Portal 2 - the gish
In our last blog post, we announced that both the VGA and X-Play awards had nominated Portal 2 for Game of the Year. How'd things turn out? Well, you'll be happy to learn, we just barely lost both of them, helping cement our frankly historic dominance of the Second Best Game of the Year category. And the good news doesn't end there: We also grabbed the number two spot in <a href="http://www.pastemagazine.com/blogs/lists/2011/12/the-20-best-videogames-of-2011.html?p=2">Paste Magazine's first annual GOTY list</a>, while clawing our way to a dramatic <a href="http://reviews.cnet.com/2300-9995_7-10010423-9.html?s=0&o=10010423">second place victory on C-Net</a>. Just so you don't think we're getting cocky, though, the <a href=" http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_YE_TOP_10_VIDEO_GAMES?SITE=MOSTP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT">Associated Press</a> and <a href="http://games.uk.msn.com/galleries/top-20-games-of-2011">MSN UK</a> put us at the <i>top</i> of their respective lists. You can't not win them all.

To celebrate all this runner-uppering, for the next twenty-four hours, Portal 2 is 75% off on Steam. If you're paying in US dollars, that means you can buy Portal 2 <a href="http://store.steampowered.com/">right now</a> for seven dollars and fifty cents! If you're paying in non-US dollars, you'll have to boot up a spreadsheet and do the math yourself, but we guarantee the result will be just as startling.

And if you already own Portal 2, might we suggest you buy a few copies to give away as gifts? No? Well, unless you somehow skipped the last couple sentences, <i>too late</i> - it's suggested. Good luck getting the idea out of your head. You may as well buy some copies before it drives you insane. Sure, it's the second best gift you can give this season, but at a price you'd expect from the seventeenth or eighteenth best gift. Plus, let's say you give someone the number <i>one</i> game of the year. How are you going to top that next year? You'll have to buy them a car. Be smart about this.
Dec 16, 2011
Left 4 Dead 2 - the gish
<center><img src="http://www.l4d.com/blog/images/posts/086/jockeyreindeer.jpg"></center>

If you have been playing Left 4 Dead 2 for a bit, you probably have your own lists of who is naughty and who is nice. We already make it easy for you to track who is being nice – we have the Steam Friends list. But we know people can rage, players can grief, and some people… well some people you just don’t want to play another game with.

For those special people, we have the blocked list. Think of it as your own personal naughty list. Not only will those people not be getting gifts from you this holiday season, they also won’t be joining you in any games, reindeer or otherwise.

Once you add someone to your blocked list, they will not be able to join your game. This means they are blocked through the lobby interface, the server browser, the recently played list, and even direct connecting. They are gone from your life.

This does also mean if a friend invites them to your game, they will be blocked. It also prevents you from joining a game where there is a player you have blocked. If it was a mistake or you kissed and made up, you can always unblock them and everything will return to normal.

How do you block someone? You can simply block any user from within the Steam Community page, Steam chats, or your Steam Friends list. Players can also be blocked while in a game via the Steam Overlay, which provides an easy path to both locate and block current and recent players from joining your future matches.

Don’t worry about offending someone with your block. As always, your blocks are private. Only you can see the list of people you’ve blocked. And again, don’t worry about making a mistake blocking, you can always unblock someone at any time.

What games will support your block? Left 4 Dead 2 is the first. We want to test it here. CS:GO will be next and then we will continue to add games that use Steamworks matchmaking.

So now that you have your lists, what about gifts for you in today’s updates?

First we have some bug fixes. We have a fix for the problem of Tanks not consistently spawning in the finales. Prodigysim (once again) correctly identified when the issue was introduced and helped us track it down. Thanks!

We fixed the problem of dying when you win Death Toll and we mixed up the distribution of melee weapons in the new campaigns (we do read the forums) .

We are also back with custom campaigns. Today we are adding I Hate Mountains to the rotation and have an updated version of Suicide Blitz 2. If you missed it, RT Frisk made a special version of Suicide Blitz 2 to help with a <a href='http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=2Eeq0QD7Epg'>marriage proposal.</a> Ohh…

Lastly… well what are those things in Versus? What’s this new achievement? You’re gonna have to play a round and find out.
Team Fortress 2 - SZ
<a href="http://www.teamfortress.com/australianchristmas2011/part2.html"><img src="http://www.teamfortress.com/images/posts/merry_smissmas_x.jpg" width="420" height="275" border="0"></a>

Board up your chimneys! Bury your milk and cookies in the yard! Load your shotguns and stuff all of your turkeys! <a href="http://www.teamfortress.com/australianchristmas2011/part2.html">This year's holiday update</a> is here!

"Wait, which holiday?" you may be wondering. "Australian Christmas? Or Smissmas?" Both! <a href="http://www.teamfortress.com/asmissmasstory/">Read this comic</a> to find out what happens when holidays collide! Two special days enter the squared circle! ONLY ONE LEAVES!

In the spirit of Australian Christmas/Smissmas/Your Holiday Here, we'd like to give a few shout-outs to all the hardworking boys and girls who made this update possible. First, a big thanks to all our community holiday item creators. Thanks also to the Dr. Grordbort guys for their cool retro-futuristic Engie and Pyro weapons. If you think they look nice in-game, wait'll you see their real-life equivalents, on sale right now at <a href="http://www.drgrordborts.com">drgrordborts.com</a>!
Team Fortress 2 - SZ
<a href="http://www.teamfortress.com/australianchristmas2011/"><img src="http://www.teamfortress.com/images/posts/aus_xmas_2.jpg" width="420" height="275" border="0"></a>

As strongly implied in yesterday's <a href="http://www.teamfortress.com/truemeaning/">educational Australian Christmas comic</a>, <a href="http://www.drgrordborts.com/">Dr. Grordbort</a> has <a href="http://www.teamfortress.com/grordborts/">once again</a> landed a steam-powered rocket directly into the gravelly fields of the TF2niverse. Only this time the rocket's a little roomier, and has arrived bearing gifts for two classes, the Engineer and the Pyro.

Click <a href="http://www.teamfortress.com/australianchristmas2011/">here</a> for Part One of our Australian Christmas Update Announcement, and don’t forget to check back tomorrow for Announcement Part Two and, more importantly, the update itself.

Just because the update’s coming tomorrow doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be playing RIGHT NOW, because guess what: Double drop rates start tonight! They’re only around until next Wednesday, so get in there and take advantage of all the double dropping!
Team Fortress 2 - SZ
<a href="http://www.teamfortress.com/truemeaning"><img src="http://www.teamfortress.com/images/posts/truemeaning.jpg" width="420" height="159" border="0"></a>

What <b><i>is</i></b> the true meaning of <a href="http://www.teamfortress.com/australianchristmas/">Australian Christmas</a>? Some say it is a hamfisted attempt by the Australian government to turn a notorious felon into a beloved folk hero. Others say it's a calculated ploy by the novelty munitions industry to sell guns that shoot mistletoe.

And then there are those who look <i>past</i> all that, and maintain that it is a time to reconnect with friends and loved ones, and to be thankful for the blessings in our lives.

And <i>then</i> there are those who are still licking their emotional wounds from all the reconnecting with friends and loved ones they did at Thanksgiving, and realize that the <b>true</b> true meaning of Australian Christmas is zero human contact, eating candy, and getting as many presents as possible.

And those people are correct—<b>that</b> is the true meaning of Australian Christmas. We looked it up.

But don't take our word for it. <a href="http://www.teamfortress.com/truemeaning">Ask the Engineer</a>.
Dec 10, 2011
Left 4 Dead 2 - Chet
<img src='http://media.steampowered.com/apps/l4d/images/l4d_sale.jpg'>

Looking around at holiday decorations and sales, we noticed an alarming lack of zombies.

We needed to fix that. We did.
Left 4 Dead - Chet
<img src='http://media.steampowered.com/apps/l4d/images/l4d_sale.jpg'>

Looking around at holiday decorations and sales, we noticed an alarming lack of zombies.

We needed to fix that. We did.
...

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