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We could have guessed as much, but now it's official: Valve will not be holding a Steam Dev Days conference this year. Instead, as ValveTime reported a few weeks ago, Valve will be focusing their energy on the Game Developer's Conference 2015.
In a statement made to Gamasutra today, Valve said that "Steam Dev Days was a great way to brief a large number of Steam developers... This year our focus will be a bit different, so we are planning a larger than usual presence at GDC. So, there will not be a Steam Dev Days this year, but we will certainly consider doing it again in the future."
You can see most of last year's Steam Dev Days presentations on YouTube and on the event's official website.
It's not all that common we post about milestones, but we think this one is definitely worth mentioning. For the first time, Dota 2 has surpassed 10 million unique players within the last month, peaking at 10,017,953 on January 1st 2015, according to the automated counter on the Dota 2 blog.
Dota 2 has consistently stood as Valve's most popular game since well before its release in July 2013, maintaining a player base of around 8-9 million regular unique players throughout 2014. As a point of comparison, Team Fortress 2 and Counter-Strike: Global Offensive continue to sit around 3 million and 4 million players, respectively.
Obviously this doesn't provide a very good indication of how many total players have played the game throughout its lifetime, but it does show Dota 2 definitely still has room to grow, despite already being Valve's most popular title, the most played game on Steam, and one of the most popular games in the world.
2014 is out of time. Let's spend a couple of minutes revisiting some of the best moments and events from the past year with our annual Year in Review video! 2015 is already looking to be one of Valve's biggest years yet. Happy New Year Everybody!
Thanks again to everyone who has checked out our content in 2014, it's been yet another great year! If you're looking for more great content, be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel, to follow us on Facebook and Twitter, and to check out our previous Year in Review videos over on our new-ish playlist! Thanks for watching.
Christmas has come again! To celebrate the best time of year, all the folks at ValveTime.net would like to wish all of our visitors, followers, subscribers, and fans a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. And what better way to celebrate than giving away a few free games!
Thanks to everyone who has stuck with us during 2014! Here's to another year! While our Round-Up takes a much deserved break, we've still got a few extra videos to release between now and the New Year, so be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel and to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date!
As we predicted on this week's Round-Up, this year's Holiday-themed update for Team Fortress 2 has been revealed in the form of "Smissmas 2014". The update will introduce a new beta game mode, free Stocking Stuffer items, new festive-themed weapon variants, 29 new cosmetic items, and three brand new weapons.
As shown below, the three new weapons include "The Iron Bomber" and "The Quickiebomb Launcher" for the Demoman, and the "Panic Attack" shotgun for the Pyro, Heavy, Engineer, and Soldier.
The new game mode, known as Mannpower, features as a fast-paced CTF-style set up with grappling hooks and nine different power-ups. Once a grappling hook is equipped in the Action Slot, it can be used to shoot out a hook which will reel the player towards the target destination at high speed a la Dota 2's Timbersaw. The power-ups on the other hand appear similarly to Dota 2's many Runes, providing temporary ability and statistical buffs to aid the player in battle, as explained within the spoiler tab below.
- Strength: Double damage for all weapons. Distance damage fall-off immunity.
- Resistance: Reduces incoming damage by 50%. Immune to critical hit damage multiplier.
- Vampire: All damage dealt is returned as health. 25% damage resistance. Max health increased by 40%.
- Warlock: 50% of damage received is reflected back to the attacker (reflected damage cannot directly cause death). Max health increased by 50%.
- Haste: Double weapon firing and reload rate. Double clip size and max ammo count. Movement speed increased by 30%.
- Regeneration: Ammo, health and metal regenerate. Rate of health regeneration inversely proportional to max health.
- Precision: Greatly reduced bullet spread. Distance damage falloff immunity. Rocket and grenade travel speed increased 250%.
- Agility: Movement speed increased by 50%. Grapple speed increase. Jump height increased by 80%. Instant weapon switch.
- Critical Hit: temporary full crit power for 30 seconds. Respawns in the same place after 60 seconds.
Currently, Mannpower is still early in development and will only be officially playable within the Beta matchmaking section on modified, CTF-only versions of Foundry and Gorge. The game mode is extremely insane at times, but thankfully Valve are ready to take any and all feedback you may have regarding Mannpower. For a quick preview of the new Mannpower gamemode and to find out just how crazy it can get out there, be sure to check out our gameplay preview video linked below!
By loading up the game during the Smissmas period, every player will receive a free "Stuffed Stocking" item with more "goodies for good little Mercenaries", much like last year. That's not all, however, as the Naughty and Nice crates we spoke about on the Round-Up can now be opened to receive either one of the 29 new cosmetic items, or one of several new Limited Festive weapon variants, depending on the crate type opened.
Like the Dota 2 and CS:GO Holiday updates released last week, Smissmas 2014 will also be introducing a rather large number of balance tweaks to a several of the game's character classes and weapons. These include a reduction to the damage variation for the Demoman's explosives, an extra 25% to the Demoman's charge meter upon getting a charge kill with the Bootlegger or Claidheamh More, and several others.
There's a bunch more details regarding this year's Smissmas update for Team Fortress 2 which will likely satisfy those previously disappointed by the community-made End of the Line update released earlier this month. Despite being described as "almost upon us", the Smissmas 2014 update and all of the content we just mentioned is now available within Team Fortress 2 itself. Happy Smissmas, everyone!
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