Valve Fans.. I Want To Understand You

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I didn't even vote in March Madness, in fact I rarely post anything on this forum, but hey, I think Valve are worth bigging up from time to time

1) When did you become interested in Valve?
Half Life, then almost immediatley Counter Strike, since then just about everything in their catalogue

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?
Valve have always treated the games and the players with respect - if one of their games has a problem, they fix it, if they can improve it a little they do, they just don't seem to have the same ideology as the rest of the games publishers selling day 1 DLC or forcing you through DRM hoops or releasing buggy software and expecting the community to fix it, they seem to work towards improving your entire experience not just vacuuming out as much cash as they can and legging it.

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?
Loads, all the time, no one's perfect, Portal's painfully short, microtransaction hats are stupid but thankfully entirely optional, they don't make enough games, there's looooong delays, but they're still head and shoulders over everyone else so instead of whining about it I say thank you and I look forward to what you have in store for me next

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?) More games, what they're based on? Who cares? The subject matter is massively overshadowed by the commitment, humour and vision that valve have put in to their past games and I really really hope they'll put into their future games. Aliens, Nazi's, Terrorists, don't care, just make it fun as you always have valve.

When did you become interested in Valve?
Quite a while after the Orange Box release, I was talking to a friend about Portal. I had played Portal: Still Alive (the XBLA version) numerous times by then, and when he reminded me that this game was a part of a package of five games I got curious. I mean, anything that could be in the same box as Portal must be at least passable, right? So I looked it up, found out I could get it new for $20 at Gamestop, and went and bought it because I am a cheap bastard. Spent most of a summer playing the Half-Life 2 games, replaying Portal a couple times, and it was all good. Then I realised there was some shooter I had never heard of before as the fifth game on the disc. I had spent at least a month with this game before ever booting up Team Fortress 2, and once I got started on it I was ashamed of myself for not doing it sooner. Even though it was terribly set up for a controller, even though it was buggy as hell due to Valve not patching it, even though there were only six maps, and even though I had to go through a lot of mental pain before accepting my new-found favourite game was never going to be patched, I loved it.

How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?
They released Portal, and Team Fortress 2, and Left 4 Dead; three games which were unique, original, and a far cry from every other game I had ever played. Once I played the games on the Orange Box, I knew they were something special.

Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?
Three words: wrongful VAC bans. You know you can have your entire Steam account banned for no reason, be locked out of your games forever, and have to go re-buy everything with no explanation, no chance of recourse, and no apology from Valve? I've seen a minute number people who've been banned like this, and it makes me feel like an EA fan sometimes. Just goes to show you that no dev is perfect, and just because they make some of the best games around doesn't mean their policies are going to be less draconian than the companies we commonly think of as evil.

What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)
Hats.

1)When they made Half-Life
2)Almost all of the games they make have a unique twist in some aspect of gameplay and almost all their games have a co-op feature
3)Not really, maybe when Steam is daft and annoying
4) A game with the number '3' in the title (not just HL(also, look it up, not a number '3' anywhere to be seen in the list of games they make))

I refuse to accept that the recent bile directed at Bioware isn't influencing this competition, so essentially, it became bogus from the moment they were included.

That doesn't mean they don't deserve to be there, not at all, but they were never going to win after the endings fiasco.

1. My friends got me into tf2, I ended up liking a thousand times more then I thought I would, and the rest is history

2. They definitely have a sense of humor that you can see compared to the other more faceless corporations. Plus constant free updates, good customer service and they generally don't end up looking like the bad guy with things like trolling their fans, day 1 dlcs, stupid bans, etc.

3. Other then half-life 3 trying to overtake duke nukem as the longest game in limbo ever not really.

4. Pretty much more of the same as they're doing now, seems to be working out great for every1.

Caramel Frappe:
Now I won't lie- this relates to the March Mayhem's Final Round of 2012 with Valve vs Bioware. When seeing the results that Valve was winning by a land side, I questioned some people for their reasons as to why they picked Valve. Even though personally I find it very silly if people vote for Valve mainly because of Steam.. a store, I have nothing against people voting for them otherwise like Portal 2 for example.

But this thread isn't about Valve fans being wrong, or why I dislike the,- no no, I like Valve actually and those supporting Valve have a right to do so. The problem is that I don't know much about Valve since sadly I never gotten really into their games like I did with Bethesda's. So this thread overall is about.. well, you! I want your feedback as to why Valve means a lot to you, why you love it, and so forth. If you're unsure how to post your feelings on Valve, I shall make questions to guide you in answering if you guys have the time:

1) When did you become interested in Valve?

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)

Anything else, feel free to add. You don't even have to answer all these questions- they're just there to help you out if you feel like posting in this thread. See, I think personally that a lot of people get on Valve fans because Valve keeps getting in the final rounds and won two March Mayhem's I believe (if I am wrong, please correct me otherwise.)

First of all, I think you vastly overestimate the number of people who vote for Valve just because of Steam. Also, you have to keep in mind the number of people who are only voting for Bioware because of KOTOR (a 10 year old game), and those who are understandably upset by nearly all of Bioware's offerings over the past 5 years.

1. I first became interested in Valve when I picked up Half-Life. I had never played such a tightly crafted experience in my life. The story, while simple, was woven into the gameplay seamlessly. Also, I've never felt as uniquely challenged by AI in a game as I was in Half-Life.

From there, I played Counter Strike and Team Fortress Classic. They were fun, and I enjoyed the amount of updates that were made.

This brings us to the launch of Steam/Half-Life 2, which was actually a huge misstep. It took me days to be able to play the game, and if it would have been bad, I would have probably written off Valve forever. It wasn't, in fact it was excellent, and since then Steam has constantly improved.

Of course, you have the Orange Box. Five games (of which I already owned 2) for slightly less than the price of one. Portal was perfect and bite-sized. HL2:E2 was a little bit too bite-sized, but gripping and epic. And Team Fortress 2...

Objectively fun.

From there, it's just more of the same.

2. The thing that strikes me specifically about them as a company is how the nurture a sort of Google/Pixar culture. Even though they have highly successful franchises and basically a monopoly on PC digital distribution, they continue to offer DLC for free and help make indie development viable.

3. They tend to collapse a little bit under their own production weight. Half-Life had excellent level design until the last hour and a half when you were on the alien planet. HL2's combat wasn't really satisfying, which I chalk up to poorly designed weapons, and this is only compounded by the fact that you spend the last hour or so essentially in god mode and the final boss is some sort of engine. Portal has no flaws. Portal 2 adds flaws with the larger environments. The Left 4 Deads have soooo many bugs and exploits, that if you weren't cheating, you put yourself at a profound disadvantage.

4. I just don't want them to change. As long as they are leading the industry in value for their games, I will continue to buy them, no matter what. Companies need to start following their example, and then maybe I'll avert some of my focus.

Caramel Frappe:

1) When did you become interested in Valve?

Few years ago I bought Garry's Mod + Counter-Strike Source. Within Gmod I played some of the HL2 levels. Decided to buy HL2. HL2 was bloody awesome, so I checked out episode 1. That, too, was made of pure awesomeonium, so I bought the Orange Box. I even found TF2 fun, and I fucking hate multiplayer. It was then that I deduced that Valve is one of the God-tier game devs operating today. They managed to create a competitive multiplayer game that I found fun enough to put over 150 hours into, something I thought absolutely impossible.[1]

There are two game devs I will pre-order for. Bethesda only gets pre-orders for Fallout games, I don't care about anything else they make. Valve I will pre-order anything singleplayer they make, provided I can afford to do so. I know it will be good, and if it isn't Valve will not rest until it is good.

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

Their games look great, will run on a toaster oven, they care about the customer, they release games when they're done instead of when the publisher wants, their downloader service provides sooooooo many useful things besides simply managing their products, and their games are priced fairly.

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?

Steam doesn't allow you to resell unwanted games, something I believe is a fundamental right anyone who buys anything has. Steam also doesn't translate currencies very well, many games rip Europe, Asia or the US off depending on how the dev sets prices. They could easily fix this by adding some backend code that checks xe.com and adjust prices accordingly, devs simply specify their desired price in their home currency and Steam does the rest. Offline mode works, but only if it likes you. I've never had problems with it but others do. The Friends service, while an absolute godsend, has it's issues(The overlay browser likes to crash the overlay and make it spazz out while loading, for example). Oh, and lastly, Steam doesn't have an easy way to molest the font size, and doing it the old school way resets every time Steam restarts.

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)

More of the same. Valve already has their games down pat. I don't even mind the waits, I prefer it matter of fact. Means I don't get the New Vegas problem, which is to say I don't get a game that's buggy as goddamn fuck, missing half it's content, and was clearly rushed out to meet publisher deadlines. Even Valve's mistakes are still better than most else you can buy, see L4D1/2. Their backend could use a lot of work though, again the currency issues and being able to resell your games being key points. I'd also like to see VAC a bit more effective, seeing as Activision absolutely refuses to allow us to moderate our own servers and instead relies on VAC and only VAC. I'd also like to see Steam be able to server hop automatically, so instead of returning "The steam servers are unable to process your request" it just takes a bit longer to launch while Steam hops servers finding one that will work.

Anything else, feel free to add.

I can't stress this enough, they need to allow us to resell individual games we're bored of. Installing a cap on price would keep publishers from spazzing out, they could even knock a couple percent off as a fee to placate the more bitchy pubs, gamers get to resell their purchased products as is their right, and everyone's happy.

We should also be allowed to just give games away if we so desire.

Captcha: know your rights. How fitting, Solvemedia.

[1] To date they're the only dev to do so, and even then they've only managed it with TF2. I can't stand L4D Versus, HL2DM, or Counter Strike.

This is a popularity contest. Valve is popular because of Steam, and Bioware currently has a bad rep with SOME people, so those will vote against Bioware, so who really cares who votes for who?

1) When did you become interested in Valve?
When the ORange Box came out.

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

They made a really good shooter, and the first puzzle game I absolutely loved

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?

No Half Life 3?

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games?

Half Life 3?

1) When did you become interested in Valve?

1998... Half-Life blew my f****** mind. And its still great

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

Half-Life 2 re-blew my f****ing mind

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?

Their only flaw is also their greatest strength... lack of direction

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?

HL3 yes im a fan boy

Don't be clouded by the ME3 ending controversy. BioWare has lost it's way on multiple fronts.

It's not rocket science. BioWare has made some very questionable decisions and games lately. How much of this is EA? A lot likely. Between the abomination Dragon Age 2, day 1 %10 DLC that should of been in the game among many other things, it's really easy to pick Valve over them.

What's not to like about Valve? They continue to release updates to all their games years after release, for FREE. That's just one positive of Valve. There are many.

It's basically console vs. PC. Console has brought MANY exploitative practices to the table. Unfortunately BioWare has fallen victim to this. Something Valve has tried to stay as far away from.

1) When did you become interested in Valve?
I first developed interest in Valve back before the orange box came out. I don't remember exactly, probably around '04, when but I bought Counter-Strike: Source and Half Life 2 from Steam. I had already been a fan of HL1, even though I never totally beat it due to CD issues. Ahh, those were the days.

There was and is a LAN in central Columbus called Whempys, it used to be quite competitive for CS:S, the tourneys took place monthly and had ladders, prizes, pizza bagels and tons of nachos, all you'd expect from a LAN. I really grew to love the LAN culture and the games we played, I guess for me this is when Valve became synonymous with PC gaming. Also I love, love, love Steamworks, why lie? I just do. Especially with the inclusion of the workshop recently.

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?
They stood out to me because they act as their own developer and publisher. This broke the regular studio/publisher relationship that we've seen cheapen and monetize so many games lately, so I have huge respect for Valve in that department. Honestly though its not their games that I admire them most for, however much I love HL, but their attitude towards PC gaming. The sales are insane, and I feel safe as a PC gamer under Valve's wing; I can't say that honestly about a single other developer.

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?
For me, yes, simple things. FOV options missing from the in-game settings of the Half Lives (I know you can work around this, but come on Valve) But what bothers me the most is two simple features that are missing.
A: The ability to send files to another use like you can so easily on xfire.
B: The option to go "Invisible" in chat. I love my friends, but I can't always play games with all of them, and I hate being made feel guilty for simply not wanting to or being busy.

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)
This is a hard question, Caramel. Honestly I just want more high-quality games that aren't L4D. I'd like to see Valve break the mold of Half Life with HL3. Change the game, as it were, not drastically but I'd like to see some more gameplay additions aside from simply "grab toilet, shoot combine." Don't get me wrong, that's always fun, but why not let us lean? Why not let us use iron sites for more accuracy on automatics? Why not let us grab ledges and pull ourselves up? Simple additions to the Valve formula are all I really want, that and HL3.

So yeah, Valve, get working on that.

Edit: Just wanted to add, I'm excluding myself from the Bioware/Valve vote. I love them both too much to choose. Why must one of my children die for the other to live? But I am very disappoint with Bioware's decisions with current releases. Looking at you, ME3, get your shit together Bioware.

1) When did you become interested in Valve?

I was a huge Half Life 1 fan, it was probably the game that made gaming a hobby instead of a distraction.

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

Every game they make has a place and does something fantastic in the mechanical design of the game. They, more then any other AAA studio, utilize games unique strength. They also experiment, have a more open design process then most, and make decisions based on long term loyalty. Also, they are the backbone of the distribution of PC games, my platform of choice, and there buisness practices advance gaming as a whole.

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games? Of course. But right now, none that seem worth nitpicking. I suppose Rochelle was pretty dull. Oh, and they are unneccisarily vauge about episode 3 for no reason. Other then that, maybe I wish they tried certain things, but what they do commit to is stellar.

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)[/b]

Well...more Half Life, but that's obvious. Other then that...new IPs are always nice. but they haven't really milked any franchise dry, so pretty much anything would earn its existence.

1) When did you become interested in Valve?

1998 when I got Half-Life and a PC that could run it for Christmas.

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

Attention to detail. Throughout the Half-Life games there's these very minor details that don't do anything to enhance the game, but give it a sense of humanity. For example, in Half-Life 2: Episode 2 there's a moment right after you get your car and are driving down the road with Alyx where she winks at you. She only does it the once, and you would only see it if you were looking directly at her (and really, why wouldn't you be?) but it was just another little detail given to flesh out the budding relationship between Gordon and Alyx.

They also have a habit of hiring good voice actors and writing good dialog that's delivered in a believable way. This is definitely exemplified in their latter games such as Zoey's rant on zombies being too fast in the elevator in Left 4 Dead or the two resistance members you meet in HL2: Episode 2 who help you defend the Vortigant and Alyx. Nothing feels forced and it just helps them feel real, or at least as real as characters can get.

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?

As Yahtzee pointed out in his Orange Box review, the Half-Life series has really started repeating itself over the last few games, which makes me wonder if this is part of the reason for the delay of Episode 3. They know how to create intrigue, but at the same time a little elaboration on some things would be nice. Most of this is just related to their habit of having lengthy breaks between releases, but they're a company that has never disappointed me so they can take as much time as they want.

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)

I would really like to see Valve's take on the World of Darkness universe. I know CCP is working on a WoD MMO and Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines used the Source engine, but the universe as a whole is very much about using details in the environment to tell the story, which is something Valve know how to do beautifully. I think they could make an intriguing Hunter game, or even a game based off Mage: The Awakening (cWoD has been over for almost 10-years now, it's time to move on an embrace the nWoD).

Yeah I'd really like to understand Valve fans myself. I mean Half Life was awesome and then... well... nothing really to like about them.

Steam when it began was just a back door for hackers to get into your computer (I got burned badly by this and i'm not big on forgiveness) Since then it's a... store...

Portal and Portal 2 were one trick ponies. That one trick got old really, really, fast.

Half Life 2 had a few good points but that drawn out buggy (not glitchy, the zodiac thingy with the gun on it) section bored me near to death and i've never been able to play past that. I understand that it gets better eventually, but in a Final Fantasy XIII gets better eventually kind of way.

Then again, people will like what they like.

Caramel Frappe:
snip

Because Valve isn't destroying themselves like BioWare.

Caramel Frappe:

1) When did you become interested in Valve?

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)

1) Orange box, my first valve game.

2) offering well polished games with characters and concepts I get interested in and good game mechanics.

3) A few, but less than most and none of them are overly game breaking.

4) More of the same would be great.

Assassin Xaero:

First off, I find this funny since you are obviously a huge BioWare fan.

Truth be told, I am actually a huge Bethesda fan lol. It's just I really adore Tali, she's probably the only reason why I loved the Mass Effect series so much. Everything else from Bioware is alright to me, but almost every game Bethesda made- I can't get enough. Still playing Skyrim and haven't completed everything from the day it came out @_@

Caramel Frappe:

1) When did you become interested in Valve?

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)

1. When my Dad got Half-Life 2, quite a few years ago. It came with CS:Source. I liked watching him play the former, and I enjoyed playing the latter myself. Eventually, I played Half-Life 2 myself and since then I've just used Steam for pretty much all my PC games.
I love Steam (which, incidentally, is more than just an excellent store) and I love pretty much every Valve game. They're very easily among my favourite developers.

2. They put a dedication into their games that I just don't see anywhere else. You play a Valve game, you're not gonna forget it - and you'll know who made it, like a signature they write into their games. You only have to look at the focus testing or rigorous refinement of concept art to know how much time and love Valve puts into their games. Simply put, they won't release something they're not proud of.

3. Left 4 Dead's buggy like a motherfucker and the very idea of a 'release schedule' is literally a running joke for them. Other than that? I honestly haven't.

4. Left 4 Dead 3. Portal 3. Half Life 3, or Episode 3. Hey, let's just get something with a three on it, yeah?
But really, I think Valve are at their best when their working with original concepts - either their own, or alongside indie developers like with Left 4 Dead and Portal. A brand new IP from Valve would make my year.

Caramel Frappe:
It's just I really adore Tali, she's probably the only reason why I loved the Mass Effect series so much.

Tali Bump.

SirBryghtside:
Out of interest, which Beth games have you played?

Morrowind
Oblivion
Fallout III
Rage
Brink
Skyrim

Only games I truly can appreciate are Oblivion, Fallout III, and especially Skyrim. So what I am saying, is that the big RPG open world games are my type of thing if that makes sense. Also, the feedback on Valve is incredible. I'm learning a lot and appreciating it guys :}

Caramel Frappe:
[...]

1) When did you become interested in Valve?

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)

[...]

I'm going to bite without reading anything because it's three pages and I'm a fucking tent.

1) I was probably in elementary school at the time. Amazed by the raw power that is Windows and computers, We were always looking for new games. I think at this time we had a PlayStation and Crash Bandicoot, along with Soul-Blade was the best of graphics.

Enter, Motherfucking Half-Life. "This shit is so realistic." "Wow, their mouths move when they talk!" "We're running like, 5 frames a second, but this is worth it, look at that gun!" We were wowed by the graphics, and the fact that poor Freeman had the shit up against him every time we thought we were doing good.

And then we discovered the Modding community.

2) (EDIT: Also, Developer Commentary is a turnon for me.) Even as I'm older now, Valve's Modding Community is the shit. Valve stands out because they put out a brainless engine, and says "Did you buy one of our games? Here's our engine, go apeshit." Yeah, Unreal did that too. But... They feel so... Unfamiliar... I dunno. If you looked back, you could find a database of Half-Life mods. It was so easy to make a Half-Life map, you could just pick it up and go. Yeah, hammer's complicated, and there were a lot of really, really bad mods, but there are ones that shined... Like DoD and Natural-Selection. (God, if you guys played with me back in my NS days, I'm sorry I was a retarded mic-spamming child.)

Valve didn't make these games, but they enabled them.

That's not the only reason why they stand out though. What makes Blizzard games amazing? Why does Assassin's Creed rock? To me, it's because they paid attention to the little details. Valve goes above and beyond that. We don't see it so much with Left 4 Dead, or Half-Life, but we really, and I mean, really fucking saw it with Portal. There are so many parts of the game they made and then turned around and said "Probably 30% of our players are going to see or hear this. But it's worth it." Having a game shove every part of it in your face, making sure you don't miss it is annoying as fuck because it's forced.

I can go on about Valve's games, and how Steam has revolutionized how games are distributed, Yeah, I'm a fan of Steam and yeah, I had my hardships back in it's Beta too, but these are the two core things.

3) I can't say Valve's work is flawless. That's against my beliefs. Somewhere, sometime, someone always fucks up and that there is nothing that's perfect. Steam, probably... That would be my only gripe because if your connection has a lot of jitter... Alright, it's a less than satisfactory system. This may be my fanboy talking, but the games they produce, and helped create... I dunno. I can't find it. Mind you, it's been a while since I picked up the Half-Life series, and I preordered Portal2. I guess the biggest issue I see is them trying to tie Portal and HL together. IMO, that probably is the sole reason why we haven't seen an Episode 3 yet. The sole cause of their delays is because Valve will refuse to fuck up the Half-Life series. They will release nothing that is par or below. It has to be amazing.

4)I want them to surprise me. With the exception of Co-op. Co-op is always welcome in SP games.

*sigh* I'm not a fanboy in a lot of things... But... I am for Valve. Unfortunatly, I don't overly enjoy talking about the company and series because I imagine myself foaming at the mouth screaming "OMG DEY R SO AWSOM!" which, if you didn't get that image in your head looking at my post, you have it now.

Two years ago, when Portal was being given away for free, I said "Okay, sure, I'll check it out" and downloaded Steam. I had heard great things about it, however, I wasn't all that into gaming on the PC. I enjoyed Portal greatly and, what with having a shiny new Steam account and all, I found myself in possession of a few other titles. I eventually bought both Half-Life and Half-Life 2, even though I've never really been much of a fan of shooters, because again, I'd heard great things about them. Both gave me hours of entertainment. I got Portal 2 when it came out and have beaten it a few times. I haven't played the multiplayer much because I keep getting put with some idiot who just wants to dick around instead of actually doing something. The challenges are what keeps me coming back. Gotta keep trying to shave a second or two off of my best times. It was the same way with the first Portal. The challenge rooms occupied me for dozens of hours.

I can honestly say that every Valve game I've played has been a great experience for me. It's not something that can be said about most game companies.

I actually didn't vote for Valve, though I'm quite a fan of theirs, but I certainly won't be losing any sleep when they'll win this year's March Mayhem, so I suppose that makes me eligible to answer your questions.

Caramel Frappe:
1) When did you become interested in Valve?

Around 2003, right about the time that they announced Half-Life 2.

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

Playing the original Half-Life was a mindblowing experience for me, back in the day. A game that wasn't a shooting gallery, and that had an actual plot and story. It was the first game that gave me a reason to finish it. I've been paying attention to Valve ever since.

3) Are* there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?

Portal 2 is one Valve game I take issue with. I thought it was an over-rated corridor fest, that only served to pointlessly drag the original game's shtick for a couple more hours. I found the humour to be very hit and miss, and I cringed my teeth every time the game found a more contrived reason to place me in yet another damn test chamber.

DoTA 2 is another Valve game that I have nothing good to say about. The community is beyond awful, and I feel like the DoTA formula has been done to death to begin with.

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)

First, I want to see Half-Life 3, and a conclusion to the series. Then, I want to see Valve moving on to something new.

Vault101:

Caramel Frappe:
snip.)

to be fair Valve is definetly the PIXAR of the videogame world...saints compared the monster of EA

Does this mean that Bungie is Dreamworks? (Bungie is my personal favorite)

I like Valve but I don't find them to be the best developers. They are certainly flexible and make game making fun but as for best developers? I can't say yes to that. Sure they are up there, I do like steam but I blame the fact that I only really go into Valve when Left 4 Dead came out. I also Loved Portal 1 and 2 but they're just not too significant in my book. I wouldn't mind working with them in my future.

1) When did you become interested in Valve?

8? years ago when i bought my first real gaming pc

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

It listens to its fans and its more bothered by quality than release dates.

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?

The wait between them. And portal 2 was over product tested resulting in a much easier campaign (listen to the audio logs their actually fascinating)

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)

More story driven co op games please, maybe something in the realms of fantasy rather than sci-fi.

The fact that Valve is winning by a landslide might have something to do with Bioware's recent.... problems with it's fan base.

I have no issues with Valve myself. I don't really dislike any of their games, though I don't particularly love them aside from L4D.

They make games that are kind of like Pirates of the Caribbean movies, you get shuffled from really exciting event/interaction to really exciting event/interaction until you're blue in the face. I prefer games that let you stop and think once in a while.

I love how people turn everything into 'my dicks bigger than yours' esqu sportsteam rivalry competitions.

I like some of Valves games, they're not my favourite developer but so what?

Personally I think Naughtydog or Rocksteady should have won this year based on what games had been released. But that was obviously never going to happen because it inevitably ends up being a popularity contest.

1) When did you become interested in Valve?

I was new to the whole "Next generation gaming" thing a couple years ago. During that period, my friend invited me to his house to show me this, quote, "awesome zombie game". Turns out it was Left 4 Dead. That was my first Valve game and I've been hooked to their products ever since.

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

Valve stood out because there games always had a unique style. They played like old-school shooters but had a new-school look. The gun-play had an addictive style to it.

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?

None what-so-ever, except for maybe the PS3 version of the Orange Box. It was plagued with load times and Team Fortress 2 was filled with too many modders.

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)

I have no wishes for future Valve games. Maybe another Portal game revolving around the co-op bots, ya' know, something non-canon.

1) When did you become interested in Valve?

When they were giving stupidly good deals such as Half Life 2 GoTY and the Orange Box
2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?
Their engine is a bit old? The load times in maps can be annoying I guess is the one thing I greatly dislike between all their games.

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)

I don't really look to companies for great games I go off of games. So I can't really say anything on that.

Caramel Frappe:
-snip-
1) When did you become interested in Valve?

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)

Anything else, feel free to add. You don't even have to answer all these questions- they're just there to help you out if you feel like posting in this thread. See, I think personally that a lot of people get on Valve fans because Valve keeps getting in the final rounds and won two March Mayhem's I believe (if I am wrong, please correct me otherwise.)

I guess since I may have inadvertently helped to spark the creation of this thread, I should probably take the time to post something. So...here goes.

I first became interested in Valve in 1998 when I picked up and played my first copy of Half-Life. (yes, I had multiple copies, but that's another story)

I had been hearing a lot of buzz from industry insiders about this new upstart developer with limited funds and big, ambitious ideas. There were claims of a reinvention of the FPS genre, and gaming narrative in general.

Naturally, I thought it was a load of crap, but the screen caps I'd seen showed some amazing looking visuals. And, seeing as I loved me some FPS fun like Doom and it's ilk, I thought, "What the hell? Why not?"

Didn't take long into my first play session to realize I was playing something special. Something I'd never seen before. By the time I had finished the game I knew two things. First, that this game was going to mark a moment in gaming wherein things would forever be different. Second, that I should probably keep my eye on this "Valve"; to see what they do in the future.

Fourteen years later, besides the occasional minor annoyance, I've yet to be disappointed by them. On the contrary, more often than not I'm "wowed" by their work. Love 'em or hate 'em, it's hard to not rank them among the best. They tend to have an attention to detail and level of polish few others have. They're also one of the few developers who actually care about their player base and one of the (even smaller) few that support the modding community. This is what made them one of my favorite developers and what set them apart from most of the industry.

This is not to say they are flawless. Good lord, no. They've made mistakes. LOTS of them. Still do, on occasion. However, they're different than most because they actually attempt to fix those mistakes. Often going above and beyond to not only fix the issue, but make it up to the players.

Steam, as wonderful as it is now, had one hell of a rocky start. Oh God such a bad start. It was buggy as hell, barely worked, and was so slow at downloading it could take a few days to get a game installed. Not to mention the store was comprised of pretty much just Valve's own games. But, they listened to the users, made adjustments, fixed bugs, and added features. This is why it accounts for over 51% of the digital-distribution service provider market. Not because it was first, but because it accommodates it's users instead of telling them to just "sit down, shut up, and deal with it." (that and, unlike most retailers who take 70% of a games sales and give the developer/publisher 30%, Steam does the reverse; takes 30% and gives 70%.)

Another flaw is also one of the better things about them. Ironically. It's their method to game development. They operate under a "cabal" system. It's a bit complicated to explain, so I'll just say look it up. Still, in short, this system does two things. It leaves the employees free to work on almost any project they want with pure creative freedom; and it lends itself to woefully drawn out development times. I'm sure I don't need to educate people on the meaning of "Valve Time".

As for the future, I hope to see more of what we've already seen, and continue to see, from them. More amazing, quality single-player narratives as well as fun, well-balanced online games. Likewise, I'm more excited to see from them what I don't expect. For example, take a look at these two patents they applied for last year:
http://www.faqs.org/patents/app/20110105231#b
http://www.faqs.org/patents/app/20110009193

The first is a modular controller designed to allow the user to manually swap out the dual analog sticks with a bevy of other input devices. Anything from a track-ball, d-pad, touch-pad, accelerometer, tilt-sensor, microphone, what have you. The other patent is for a bio-feedback input and tracking technology which, based on the patent and some interviews with Mr. Newell from a month or two past, is designed to track and analyze the movements and physical/mental state of the player (like, say, level of anxiety) while playing a game. The system then uses this data to make real-time adjustments to ingame events to better suit the players play-style and make for a more immersive experience.

Anyway, long post aside, the best way I can put it is: I like Valve because they make amazing games, care about the players, support modding, and are always looking towards the future. And, unless they royally screw up at some point, I'm going to continue to like them.

Also, here's a run-down of past MM winners:
2009 - Turbine
2010 - Valve
2011 - Mojang

The one constant in all of those MMs? Bioware was ALWAYS in the final. Every year. So don't give any credence to anyone complaining about "Valve's always winning" or "Valve's always getting to the final and ruining the bracket". It's a load of bollocks. Bioware is always the one making it into the final. So if any company is "messing up" the bracket, it's Bioware.

Caramel Frappe:
1) When did you become interested in Valve?

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)

1) Although they where always around, I am not a PC gamer, so I became interested after The Orange Box.

2) Because you can see they are really smart, and like to treat their users as if they were really smart too. Their games are always super polished and they are known for taking creative decisions against marketing tactics (making the protagonist of Portal a woman and Team Fortress 2 an animated FPS are two examples that come to mind).

3) Yes, several. I think Portal 1 is too short, and Half-Life too long (and it also has some serious pacing issues)...

4) I am among other people that wish to see an Episode 3 or a Half-Life 3 game. Possibly a tie-in with the Portal universe.

1) Maybe 2006-ish

2) They're pretty damn creative, and no one can hit the "sporadic delay" button without getting their ass chewed out like them. I'm just answering these, not necessarily a Valve worshiper.

3) Some of their games are kinda boring. The first Half-Life and the L4D games as an example. And as innovative as they are, they can't seem to do much outside the over-saturated shooter genre.

4) The kind of innovation they're capable of and the great humor they tend to inject coupled with an RPG styling would be awesome. Then again, I say that about most of the good non-RPG loving companies. Cuz well, RPG's > all. Or if they made something that was like a huge clash of video game parodying they'd probably pull that off better than anyone.

Bioware is still head and shoulders above them though. Really? Because you didn't like the ME3 ending? That discounts 1 and 2, Origins, Baldur's Gate, KOTOR, Jade Empire, Neverwinter Nights, MDK2, and the masterpiece that is Sonic Chronicles: The Dark Brotherhood?!?! (last one's a joke of course, but it's good for a 21st century sonic game)

I just can't put Half-Life 2, the Portal games, and a strictly multiplayer sandbox shooter over that flurry of epic titles. As much as I love Portal and think Half-Life is pretty good.

I remember the exact moment I fell in love with Valve, it was the second I played The Orange Box for the first time; January 17, 2008. Never having played a Valve game before since I'm primarily a console gamer and was unaware of their PC titles, I was completely blown away by how immersed I was in their games. From the supreme storytelling and great dialogue of Half Life and Portal, to the multiplayer perfection of TF2, I was forever made a Valve fan.

I haven't played a singe Valve game that I didn't love right from the start. I'm not saying that they're incapable of making a bad game, it just hasn't happened yet in my opinion. And again, I stress the importance of me not being a PC gamer and not even having a Steam account, so my love for Valve is based purely on their games alone.

As far as their future, I want what every other Valve fan wants, but unlike ever other Valve fan, I'm not gonna complain about it. If the phrase "quality over quantity" has any truth in it, then it applies to Valve perfectly.

I'm a fan of Valve because I LIKE THEIR GAMES. Boom.

And that's not a selective liking as with Bioware (where I only ever really enjoyed KOTOR and Jade Empire, but those were great games), bar the fact that I've never played Ricochet I have clocked hundreds upon hundreds of joy-filled hours with Valve's games.

Half Life, Portal, Counter Strike, TF2, Left 4 Dead, Day of Defeat. These are brilliant titles, and for a guy with a pc that's only really capable of semi-old multiplayer games and old single-player games Steam is a dream come true (especially since Valve's titles fall largely into those categories).

And don't you think it's a bit insulting titling the damn thread as "wanting to understand you"? Sure, if you accidentally stumbled upon an online community that enjoyed meeting up with each other to vomit into each other's mouths that might be a little hard to "understand". But this is a fucking videogame company, that makes videogames, great videogames, so I'm guessing you only called it that (as silly a title as it was) so it wouldn't seem like another stupid, pointless Valve vs Bioware thread.

Caramel Frappe:
1) When did you become interested in Valve?

2) How did Valve stand out to you more then any other gaming company?

3) Is there any flaws you've found in Valve or their games?

4) What do you hope to see in future Valve games? (as in what are the future games going to be based off of?)

Hey Caramel, it's cool to see you outside of your KS thread! Anyway;

1. I became interested in Valve after playing Half-Life 2 for the first time in 2007, as a part of The Orange Box

2. Valve is particularly community oriented, and often listen to suggestions made by fans, and incorporate mods into finished games (Counter-Strike, for example). Outside of Mojang, they're perhaps the most community-focused gaming company I know of.

3. Yes, there are flaws, all games have flaws! However, the Half-Life series, Portal, and Team Fortress are significantly less flawed than most other series I've seen.

4. Episode 3, obviously. That being said, I also wouldn't mind an entirely new engine for Half-Lfie 3. The Source Engine is seriously showing its age at this point.

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